July 7, 2014

My Testimony


I could start out with a bunch of cliches....time flies fast when you are having fun, all good things come to an end, and many more.

First of all, I love Argentina. I love the mission. I have even learned to appreciate and enjoy all the dog chasing, door slamming, hot summers, cold winters, animals biting, food eating, and everything else that has come along with the package.

I would like to take this last opportunity I will have, with my name badge still on, to share my testimony.  A testimony that leads to conversion may be the biggest blessing we receive from the mission. This work is not about me, or us, this is God`s work, it is about helping his children return back to his presence. In God`s perfect plan he uses us, his imperfect children, to bring to pass this great and marvelous work. I could also list any number of lessons that have been learned - by forced experience, the agency of others, and situations that one would never imagine before this little adventure called the mission. One comes to realize the value of diligence, obedience, faith, love, patience, humility. (And not to mention the value of conveniences such as a washing machine, hot water, hot sauce and flavorful food, and that a few blisters never hurt anyone)

More than anything I can testify that our Savior lives. It is through His grace that we repent and can become more like Him. I know this because I have felt it in my own life, and also seen it in the lives of others in Virginia and Argentina. And now, my son, I have told you this that ye may learn wisdom, that ye may learn of me that there is no other way or means whereby man can be saved, only in and through Christ. Behold, he is the life and the light of the world. Behold, he is the word of truth and righteousness. (Alma 38:9) I know that our Heavenly Father loves us perfectly. Happiness and peace in this life comes through obeying his commandments. I testify of the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. I have come to absolutely love this book. (If I had to sell something door to door, this is probably the only product I could be passionate about.) I testify of Joseph Smith, and also that God has called a living prophet. 

Thank you for all your prayers and thoughts. They have been felt. God listens to us. Through coming to know and love our Savior, we can love those around us. The greatest experiences in life come when God uses  us as instruments in his hands. I love my Savior Jesus Christ. I love this gospel. Sometimes I think, why are we not running down the street with our hands in the air to let everyone know of this message....We have a purpose so important in the life, to prepare to return to the presence of God.

The church is true. Let us keep going with more faith. Que sigan adelante! Que seamos firmes y diligentes en nuestros convenios. Les quiero!

Hermana Andrews

Mision Argentina Rosario, enero 2014-julio 2014

June 30, 2014

June 30 2014


President Giuliani has gone, we now have a new pres. It´s a reminder of how the mission really is...people come and go, we come and go, but the work of the Lord continues on.

Well this week the biggest obstacle has been people juntados. I have been trying to think of the word for this in english...but we haven´t figured it out...would be living together?

It is a huge obstacle here in Argentina, the number of people that are not married, and the overall attitude of marriage. We were sitting in a lesson with Natalia and Jorge, (Jorge has now read half of the book of mormon in 2 weeks), when we found out they are jundado!!! Ugh. They have been living together for 18 years, and to divorce from her old husband is a complete mess and takes lots of time and money. We normally ask if they are married in the first contact....and we can´t remember if we never asked them before or what happened. But anyways, this was something difficult, complicates baptism.

We found another family, Raul and Marcela, one day contacting. We talked to the guy, he told us he lived alone and invited us in. What a creeper, we were thinking. Well it was all a joke, he has 6 kids, and they are a family with a ton of potential. It´s so refreshing to have a family where the mom AND the dad listen. Another new person is Carolina, she absolutely loves God, and has the most interesting personality...but would mean she will fit right in as a member here, and accepted a baptismal date:) I just love the people in Argentina, they all have something so odd but loveable about them. jaja. She is 35 and married to a 70 year old. But hey, I guess that´s love.

Leandro is doing better, it´s been a struggle after his baptism as he has had so many more distractions and temptations. But we were able to see him receive the priesthood, and he is doing better, and doesn´t even have a girlfriend. :)

We had a couple awkward moments...teaching a lesson, when someone claps outside, and it was los testigos de jehovah....Our investigador just says ´oh it´s just the testigos, they pass by too...¨ jajaja. Then after this lesson we go contact a street, when the testigos come walking up in their big heard like they do to attack a block, and start contacting! They then saw us standing in a doorway, and moved themselves to a different street. jaja.

The activity we did was a talent show. It turned out that our president and his counselor couldn´t come...so it was left to us 4 little missionaries to do it all. Well in the end it turned out a real hit (what would be considered a failure in america was a success here?....) and they all loved it. We had quite the variety of talents.... 74 year old recent convert Rogelio demonstrated how fast he jumps up on to his bike seat, and zoomed around the chapel. There were poems in french, singing, a mock radio show, and we did some completely embarrasing act, dancing around to music with balloons on the top of our heads. (even worse with the fact that the only music we have is from EFY...) But the whole thing was hilarious.

Church was exceptionally good yesterday. We talked about diets...but specifically spiritual diets. And how many times we are so worried about our physical body, but how often do we starve our spirits?

And....the world cup. Argentina is playing quite well:) There´s even a good chance that the US will play us...so we will see how that goes.

Love you all!! Hope summer is going well:)
Hermana Andrews

June 23, 2014

June 23 2014, Happy Summer!

Happy summer! Happy world cup! (Argentina has been doing pretty great I've heard...)
Another week has already come and gone. I don´t really even know what to tell you....but maybe some pictures will do? It´s weird to think that in a few weeks my life as I have known it will come to an end. I feel like I just have to take everything in here. I finally understand the meaning of awkward RMs. It´s leaving a life and entering a different culture.

We have been working on the whole riding without hands.
I don´t know how people haul their three children around
on those things.
Oh, just riding the donkey home from school.

4 north americans with lemon bars. Our favorite treat. Last night we slept with them, today is Hna Wildes birthday. We celebrated with facturas for breakfast and are watching Frozen....(yes Jacob). And she got the traditional phone call from President in the morning. There´s none of that free coldstone on your birthday, or anything like that...
There´s a huge emphasis on contacts in this mission. But how cool is it to think that if we talk to 140 people every week, as Elder Ballard has asked, (in the streets, knocking doors, etc), that´s 140 times to share your testimony. And if you do that every week of your whole mission.... What miracles would be seen.

We had some pretty great miracles. We taught someone named Natalia, and her husband Jorge (ex testigo de jehova), we came back another day, and she told us she could walk again and her health had improved. And natalia had read all of first nefi. We also taught some other new people, have more people with baptism dates. Its always just the part of actually going to church that is most difficult. We taught Lucia, and one night she taught us how to make noquis, it´s italian food that´s like pasta made from potatoes. We also met a guy who has written a best selling book on amazon, about ´why god doesn´t exist and that the bible was written by numerologists´. Poor guy. He wanted to teach us all the evidence from the bible why God doesn´t exist and that he was made up by math people.

One day I saw a family on the side of the road as we were driving to Parana, taking family pictures in matching clothes (soccer jerseys), with all the little kids lined up. It felt to Utah-Mormon! I haven´t seen something like that in a long time.
Love you all! Have a great day. This gospel is true! And enjoy the world cup:)
hermana andrews
p.s. heleman 12:1
"And thus we can behold how false, and also the unsteadiness of the hearts of the children of men; yea, we can see that the Lord in his great infinite goodness doth bless and prosper those who put their trust in him."

June 16, 2014


 Happy world cup! The copa mundial may be the biggest cultural thing I have seen in argentina, next to mate of course... Yesterday they played Bosnia, and won! The little phrase ´in the world but not of the world´ ever felt so true. As we walked around and attempted to contact houses, there was almost no one. Everyone and their dog was watching it. Luckily there was one family of members that don´t like soccer, and we taught them. Walking home it was almost eerie as no one was in the street. The most festive we got was the flag in the window, and a jersey I bought.

Happy fathers day!!! Yay. We went to church. The primary children didn´t even sing the little song. And we had salad and soup for lunch. jaja. But yesterday was quite a day. Keep in the mind the events of the world cup and fathers day....

As we left the church my comps bike busted, the tire went completely flat as a part of it was broken. So then she hops on the back of mine and we haul home. We go to open the apartment door, and it wouldn´t open...and wouldn´t open....The key didn´t work or something. I was searching all the options, of climing the roof, shimmingy around the side of the wall to climb in a window...and nothing was working. We go tell the neighbor-owner. She comes, can´t open it, thought we had busted the door....This happened during middle of the siesta, a sunday, fathers day, and the world cup. Worst circumstances. We were getting ready to make a trek back to the other hermanas apartment, who don´t live even close, and without bikes...When finally the door opened! Our neighbor sprayed some grease stuff, and it was a miracle!

To top off the day, a dog attacked us walking home. I have never been so terrified with a dog in the mish, as it was huge and black, and chased us with its big fangs hanging out. And no one to help us, as obvsiously everyone was inside watching the game. All in all a memorable day. The other hermanas then came over to sleep, we ate our crepes and ranch and veggies:)

Happy 17 months in the mish! The hermanas gave me a lovely little present all wrapped up.....I open it up, and there´s an animal hoof sitting there! Like all fury with bone sticking out...jajajaja. It was so disgusting. They found it on the side of the road yesterday and thought it would be a classy white elephant. Still not sure if it´s a sheep, goat, or something else.

We had a week of miracles. We found several new families to teach, one day a member came with us to contact her reference and the man ended up accepting a baptismal date! It was so great to see her have this experience, she had a list of people she was praying for to be prepared to accept the gospel, and it really strengthened her faith. Not all the little miracles can be put into words, but I really saw this week how God works according to our faith and diligence. As a district we were focusing on and practicing inviting people to be baptized...and I saw how God gave us the opportunities to do it.

I also like to see how some people are so content with what they have. People that can hardly walk, or hardly have a house...but are the happiest people. It´s humbling and makes me grateful.
Some people are just obsessed that we are from the US, and even asked us to sign their copy of the book of mormon. jaja.

Our branch pres. has now given us the assignment of teaching sunday school also...oh boy, the old testiment kills me. I´m used to teaching about the faith the jose smith all day! My companion teaches one class, and I teach the other, so that there´s a sunday and gospel principles. I have come to love teaching people.
Your week sounds so fun! Jacob is a little adventurer now!
Thanks for the letters and pictures! I´m grateful for all your prayers also. Have a great week,
Hermana Andrews

June 9, 2014

June 9 2014

Remember that cheap little walmart watch that we got right before the mtc?....well, It´s finally kicked the bucket. Most of my other things have long been shot, but the trusty little thing is finally dead. (After showing up 30 minutes late to a meeting with the branch president....and having no idea that we were a little behind...oops)

Another week has already come and gone. My comp is hermana Carlson (I started and am ending in Argentina with a comp named Carlson!), and she is so great. She´s from Orem, has almost a year in the mish, what else....Everyone says we look alike. There´s 4 of us americans here now. And the other hermana,hermana wilde, was with me in santa fe for a long time. Needless to say, it´s quite fun here:)
This week consisted of the hermanas that had a baptism, we ate tacos with the familia spies (argentine style....they were DYING from the picante, and it wasn´t even hot....and of course dumped plenty of oil on the tomatoes, lettuce, and meat), we played signs for FHE with the ward (SO hilarious, as there were only adults, all of which are a little older and weren´t quite understanding the concept of the game).

Yesterday our investigador Lucia came to church, well at least for part of it. And after we had an asado with them. She is so great.....she reads the scriptures and analyzes it herself. So refreshing to have a person who is intelligent and gets it. She asked us, ¨so the great and abominable church that it talks about in nefi would be the catholics, no?¨.....She has such good questions. Now we just have to get her husband on board, and they gotta get hitched.

We have had to leave a lot of people, but that´s the mission life. Find, teach, find teach. It´s all a process. And within this whole process, there are so many miracles. It´s been surprising to also see the lack of knowledge that many members here have....for example, we asked what ´atonment ´means, and hardly anyone really knew. It´s a testimony to me of the diligence and studies. Even people who are members for years forget things, get lazy, and get comfortable. We are working to teach the members the basic principles and missionary lessons.

Congrats on the graduation landon!!!!! How adorable. Was it in the place in sandy? And holy smokes, ethan has grown into an ostrich or something.
Thanks for all the prayers, and updates.
Enjoy all the camps and trips this week!
Love you all,
Hermana Andrews

"There is no doctrine more fundamental to our work than the Atonement of Jesus Christ. At every appropriate opportunity, testify of the Savior and of the power of His atoning sacrifice. Use scriptures that teach of Him and why He is the perfect pattern for everyone in life. You will need to study diligently. Do not become so absorbed with trivial things that you miss learning the doctrine and teachings of the Lord. With a solid, personal doctrinal foundation, you will be a powerful source for sharing vital truths with others who desperately need them."
—Richard G. Scott

June 2, 2014

Transfers - June 2 2014

And another transfer has come and gone......This transfer I knew I would be staying here, and was kind of just over all the news and excitement of who is going where. I guess I am officially the old lady. The news came, the sad part is that my comp Hna Castaneda is leaving....but my baby that I trained, Hna Hickman, is going to train in venado tuerto, where i started!! Also, the Hna Coreas who is here with me in Esperanza is going to my area in Santa Fe!! It´s a small world here in the mission.... I am starting my last transfer. Last of everything. Very bittersweet.

So the week also consisted of the day of cleaning, pulling a car out of the mud, more rain, zone meeting, lots of teaching and finding, and everything else.   The hardest part of the mision would be seeing people not fulfill with their commitments, not come to church.....to know that people have felt the spirit, and knowing how the gospel changes the life now and for the eternity, and then see the people reject it. Having people shut doors in the face, the freezing cold, or whatever rude comment does nothing. It´s feeling this love that God has for his children, and then seeing people not live up to their potential. This is what hurts. I´m understanding more the book of mormon, what all those missionaries like alma and ammon and amulek were talking about, when their worked with all diligence and prayed constantly for their brothers, to come to a knowledge of Jesus Christ. I know the true joy in life really does come from this, to see our brothers and sisters understand and apply the atonement in their lives.

Hermana Hickman loves me enough that she sent me oreos and a jar of peanut butter! true love. And I received your letters and pictures, thanks!!

Congrats on the seminary graduation landon! Still going to boondocks, or how is it now?
Love you all,
Hermana Andrews

My new friend

May 26, 2014

May 26 2014


Truth is, I don´t have much to say. 
Maybe some pictures to share?
Of course every day is exciting to me, but when it comes to putting it in a letter for people thousands of miles away to read, it just doesn´t quite work out. 

Some things that could be noted is we had branch conference (almost have the people who came were from the stake..jaja) We are part of a stake in santa fe. Us missionaries were in charge of putting together a little choir, so of course i played the piano. Oh boy...such sweet people, with desires to sing...and have never had any training in the least bit. The things we take for granted, like having a beautiful sounding choir in church. jaja. But I think it ended up sounding ok, at least it didn´t drive away the spirit... The conference was really good, the stake president (who was the first person called to start the church in esperanza) talked about the promises that have been made about this area. It really is a special place. And I just know that one day the church will be thriving here. For now, there are some members who are just rocks and such examples.

One day we let a member borrow one of the bikes...so it was me and my comp sharing my bike, cause it has the little ´seat ´ thing on bike. What a ride. A...it´s not so cute to have 2 full grown people clunking around like that. Catches the attention of people, that´s for sure. 

The moral of this picture is you should never ask a 7 year old to take the picture. Because the oversized american gets her head chopped off. But, he is the same adorable little boy who then walked up to each of us, including his mom, and said ´fat ´, ´fat´, ´fat´,...as he pointed to the stomachs. He pointed at me and said ´skinny´. jajaj. First person so say that, so I like him. 

Working hard!....or hardly working?... We helped a family build the brick fence. And dug out weeds. The old fashioned pioneer way...with out the tiller thing or weedwacker. I was just wishing I had some Preen to put down after.

It was 25 de Mayo yesterday, it´s dia de la revolution of something....but anyways some holiday, everyone eats empanadas and loco. So we ate some food.

I love teaching gospel principles. You never know what it will bring. Yesterday it was 2 recent converts and an investigador. Edgardo is almost 80...and the investigador is a sweet old viajito also. Well we taught plan of salvation. Edgardo explained where we came from before being born....in the words of an 80 year old, and how parents love each other and all....jajaja me and my companion were trying to compose ourselves and not pee our pants, all while the other member kept saying ´we lived in the moms tummy! we lived in the moms tummy!¨. We explained about the before, before part....like our spirits in heaven.

Well don´t worry, the week did have the other great spiritual parts and all:) As a zone activity we all contacted for almost an entire day, to find some specifically prepared for baptism. We have met several people this week with lots of potential, and it also turns out that our investigador Sofia already knows one of our members. A super special moment was as we taught a new investigador Melina, she said the closing prayer, and immediately after started crying and crying. She explained she felt something really good...she felt the spirit so strongly, and we helped her recognize what she was feeling. It was a testimony to see how God touches the hearts of his children through the spirit. 

I love you all!
Thanks for the letters and prayers. 
Hermana Andrews

P.S. I heard this scripture in a district thing, and love it. It´s about the work we do...in the mission, callings, etc. The success isn't ours, it's God's. 1 Cor. 3:6-9