Wednesday, January 11, 2012

9 January 2012

Beautiful Peruvian sky

Mark, January 2012 (17 months into his mission)
Querido Familia.
How did the week go? I had a great week here with the Elder Rojas. He is from Lima and is very good. He’s got the same time in the mission as I do and comes from the Mollendo Zone (pronounced moyendo more or less I think.. it’s hard for me to write how it sounds in English... I think if I read a word in I don’t know I would read it with a spanish accent yes or yes).
This week we have been trying and trying to do the good. We couldn’t work Monday or Tuesday and started Wednesday. But even asi (with that) we passed the last week. We ALSO had to do two interchanges of companions... so basically I was with Elder Rojas Wednesday, y (and) Sunday and a little of Saturday.
Last night we taught a family who was pretty awesome.
The family Chamana is progressing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
We talked with them with Elder Garcia in intercambios (exchanges with another companion) and taught about eternal marriage and civil marriage. The dad was alone that day and at the beginning was ok with the idea of getting married, but at the end he was so animated (excited) to be able to go get married next week!! So we left him to go to another cita (appointment) and we challenged him to ask the hand of his girlfriend to be wife. His children were so happy that they will be getting married.
When we came the next time the to-be wife was there and we got to teaching, she expressed a lot of doubt and the feeling that she couldn’t leave the traditiones (traditions) of her parents. We taught her the doctrine of eternal marriage. She said the same that her to-be husband had said last week that she didn’t want to submit herself to the law of man, just God, so she was going to get married by the power of God. We explained about the sacred nature of the marriage covenant and how we have to be spiritually ready and how Civil marriage is a blessing that allows her family to stay together in the preparation for a temple marriage. To be able to complete the Law of Chastity starting now to be ready by February 2013 for the temple. They at the end were able to be happy and wanting to get ready. Another one of their doubts was that there is ONE church on the Earth with the authority of God to perform ordinances and not all of them (all of the churches). I understood why she thought that that would be a problem. It’s because the world is imagining a God who doesn’t exercise mercy on those who come unto Him in faith. We explained the temple and how in addition to ordinances for the living, there those who have deceased can be sealed to their families in the heavens, because that is the mercy of God with His children. We explained the other part of her doubt, that children who haven’t been baptized or are baptized from a baptism other than that of Christ (like hers) aren’t lost, but of them is the kingdom of God. In that moment she realized that all of her doubts are coming form false doctrines and teachings of the "world" but really from any who isn’t the Church of Jesus Christ. She understood that God is merciful and loving and was relieved.
Here in Peru, to get married you need your birth certificate. But nobody ever has it and if they are from far away, they have to go to their home town to  get a certified copy. We were worried that that would delay their marriage but SHE HAS A COPY! I have never heard of that happening. Her to-be husband is from Camana so that’s easy. 
Also in church yesterday, something awesome happened. The Quorum of Elders teacher was sharing the 11 personal creeds that George Albert Smith gave himself when he had 34 years (they are so awesome). One was that he would help all know the truth. The teacher asked what it meant and Brother Cabrera (the investigator.. the only Brother Cabrera I know...just so y’all know) gave the answer: We have to help all know know that the Book of Mormon is true and that Jesus Christ is the Lord. I wrote that down to remember it. He had brought his brother to church too to be able to present (introduce) his brother to us.
In the zone leader conference the President talked about DyC 4 and asked if this is a missionary scripture. We all said yes and he said: “No.” Haha. It was given to the patriarch of the Church, the father of Joseph Smith in this time. But it applies to all, and especially ward council and priesthood excecutive committee and mission coordination. That we need to work with all! Then he mentioned a scripture for young missionaries and said DyC 11 and I officially recommend it to Paul so that he can study it good this week. It’s really, really good, and it guilt- tripped me a little for not having studied it before coming.... so Paul, read it so you can avoid guiltation (where did this word come from?) like me. haha. But really, study and understand it. You will be called to preach the gospel with power and authority. That doesn’t just come. You have to make yourself ready to preach in that way. And it doesn’t just come by going to the MTC. It has to come from YOU and you should know the word before going. Like it says in DyC 11. Asi que, lealo! (So, read it!)
Tomorrow we’ve got family home evening with the Cabrera family.
Today I was reading in Corinthians and it was AWESOME. This Paul guy was such a man. I want to be like him. I like how he expresses the truths, I like 1 Corinthians 12 28 a lot and 1 Cor 14 is illuminating.
Love Elder Johnson

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