|Notice the HEIGHT difference :)|
This week we have come across a LOT of Apostasy. It is crazy! Never in my whole mission have I found so much Apostasy, and people who don't like the Church. I read the talk from Elder Holland this week titled ¨The Cost and Blessings of Discipleship¨, and it really helped me a lot. In it he says, ¨...defend your beliefs with compassion, but defend them.¨ The times that I have shared my testimony with people that are just so so confused, have been the moments that my testimony has grown the most this week. It is hard to hear so many people bashing the Church, and saying things that are just so sad to hear, and so offensive to Heavenly Father, but when Hermana Medina and I have shared our testimonies, is when I have felt so strongly that YES, this is the true Church. Usually when I hear apostasy, I get really angry and argue, but this week the Spirit really helped me keep calm. Seriously, it has been crazy the things we hear. Like some things I don't even feel comfortable writing in this email. One member of the Church told us that Doctrine and Covenants was written by a man, and as I bore my testimony of Joseph Smith that he is a prophet of God, I felt it SO strongly. I think it was the first time I have ever cried in front of a less active member, but I am so grateful that my testimony is able to grow through experiences like this, and not be damaged. I can see the difference in the TESTIMONY I had before my mission, and the CONVERSION I have now. I am so grateful for all of the experiences I have had to gain this conversion, and a lot of them came from Barranca. So, even though I was confused about my time in Barranca, and why I was sent there...I can see now that I received a huge part of my conversion there, and I am so grateful for that. The Lord is definitely closest in our difficult times.
So, Hermana Medina and have been tearing it up! Working so hard! I want to be a great example to her, and I want her to start her mission off successful. So, we have been working harder than ever here in Huaraz!! Seriously, my feet HURT! There are lots of fleas here so I am literally eaten alive, but we are pushing through! We were able to meet a family this week and set a baptismal date for the 5th of July. La familia Tafur Leon...is a mother with her 3 daughters, Kari, Andrea and Fatima. They are awesome!! Kari was so excited to answer the door to a gringa because she studies English and needed help. The girls are VERY smart. They understand the gospel. They had great questions and it was a GREAT first lesson. Hermana Medina, being the best trainee ever, invited them to be baptized finishing the lesson and they accepted!! So we will be fighting Satan hard this next month so that they can receive an answer and be baptized. Be praying for them...La familia Tafur Leon. They are awesome :)
Hmm what else...OH...Hermana Jones and Hermana Leyva are companions!! Haha! Two of my best friends, and now they can be friends. Basically, BYU is just going to be THE BEST when I get home :) Also, Hermana Lopez is already home! She left Monday!!! She called to say goodbye. Really, the people you meet on your mission leave a HUGE impact on you. I am really really grateful for Hermana Lopez and everything she taught me!! All my companions have played such a huge part in my progression as a daughter of God, and each one has helped me come closer and closer to Christ. I am excited to see what great things Hermana Medina has to teach me :)
|Hermanas Agle, Jones & Leyva|
Well, I am sure in these next weeks I will have SO much to write about because I am in HUARAZ, and Pdays are going to be AWESOME. Oh also, my zone leader now is Elder Martinez who is the missionary I was in a trio with for a day in the hospital. He is super great! Basically, I am just really excited to be here and to be working in the zone in the mission that is closest to heaven :) 3 miles above sea level, and about 8 hours from Lima. It is really hard to breath sometimes, and it is super dry, but so great! I am excited to see miracles here!! I am finishing my mission strong! I know this gospel is true and I am so blessed to have this chance to share it here in Peru!