Monday, March 28, 2016

¡Felices Pascuas!

Hola Familia y amigos!

Happy Easter! Or as they say here, Happy Easters. We had a great Easter yesterday- we ate lunch with the Familia Ramirez, as normal, then we found a menos activa while contacting and she gave us banana-orange juice and torta and then later we had a Noche de Hogar/dinner with Andrea and her kids, a single mom in our ward. That, on top of the Easter candies and grandma's fudge, made us two very full Hermana misioneras. Earlier this week we also made chipa, as is the semana santa tradition, with the Familia Admen. It's been a very fun, junk-food full Easter week.

Yesterday I finished el Libro de Mormon and the spirit confirmed to me that it is true. As a mission we have been marking all of the words "faith", "repentance" and "baptism" to find all of the passages about the doctrine of Christ, but I also added the word "diligence" to my word/verse search, one of the Christ-like attributes I want to improve/develop. I was thinking there would only be a few verses on diligence, however there is a lot of verses on it. As I have been reviewing what I've read and learned I've been working to apply diligence to my work as a missionary. With anything, we can't be the best of the best tomorrow after deciding so today. It's more of an uphill process, little by little getting better and better, working consistently towards our goals that will get us to where we want to be.

On Thursdays I was having a rough diligence day - it was rainy, we'd been walking and contacting without much success and I was pretty tired, just one of those days you're just ready to throw in the towel. As we were heading towards our next visit I randomly thought to take a left and head down a street when we usually just go straight and take a short cut. Our appointment wasn't at a set time so, thinking why not, we turned down the street. Not two houses down I saw Limpia, a menos activa we visited a lot in Juan de Salazar, working at a house in our area. We talked to her for a minute and found out that she got a job and has moved in with her cousin here in Asunciòn! Turns out her cousin lives about a block outside of our area, but it was a great tender mercy to me that day to find her and invite her back to church. We're passing on the reference to the other missionaries and I'm hoping for the best for her! If we hadn't been diligently working we would not have found her or known that she had moved.

I love the Book of Mormon, I know it's true. I've truly come to know my savior and the importance of His redeeming sacrifice for us more than through any other source. Every time I read it I feel this kind of joy that's hard to describe - all I know is I want everyone to feel it and that's why I'm here, to share it. I also know that Christ lives! I am so grateful to know that He lives and is working, more diligently than we can imagine, to bring us back to our Father in Heaven. Hallelujah.

With love sent from Paraguay,

Hermana Carr

P.S. Here are some pictures to give you some insight into my life here in Asuncion.

My ironing board (my comp's bed)

My air conditioning (we call it R2-D2)

My washing machine 

My dryer

My dish washer (just like the one we take camping!)

Monday, March 21, 2016

Temple Day & Sick Days

¡Hola familia y amigos!

On Tuesday we were able to go to the temple and it was amazing. I love the temple so much! I feel the closest to my Heavenly Father in the temple and I am so grateful for these sacred places we have all over the world. It was a great spiritual experience to be able to attend again and after I felt ready to go share the gospel and invite people to have the same experiences I've had.

Sadly, Thursday my companion came down with a bad cough and lost her voice, so we've been in trying to help her recover for the last few days. As missionaries it's a little different on sick days - instead of staying in and having a "Netflix" day, we just stay in, study and maybe watch Meet the Mormons. Thankfully I've got the scriptures, Jesus the Christ and a book about the history of the church in Paraguay to read. The more I learn about Paraguay the more I love this country.

Cool story about the temple and our chapel: The chapel in Moroni was if not the first, one of the very first chapels built in Paraguay. It was built by the members and the missionaries in a central part of Asunción, calling a lot of local attention. Once built, it was used as a meeting house for the neighboring areas/cities as well as those who were here in Asunción. Though the members were few, the Paraguayan pioneers were strong. As the church grew the Moroni chapel was chosen as the grounds for the temple. There was a mansion next door that the church bought as well and instead of tearing down the mansion they incorporated it into the new chapel that sits next to the temple. In 2002, Gordon B. Hinckley and a couple of the Apostles came and dedicated the temple and were impressed by the unique chapel as well as the temple.

I am so lucky I get to serve in an area so deeply tied to the roots of the church here in Paraguay. It's a privilege to add my little bit of service to the countless missionaries that have come through here since the 1950s.

I love you all and hope all is well. We're coming up on Easter and General Conference!!! With regards to the Book of Mormon challenge: Endure to the end! We can do it! Two more weeks!!

With love sent from Paraguay,

Hermana Carr

Monday, March 14, 2016

Happy Pi P-Day!

¡Hola familia y amigos!

So today is the only day in my life that I will ever have a "Pi" day, P-day. Pretty cool! To celebrate, because we celebrate the little things, we got "pie" tarts from Superseis.

This week we had changes again - man, six weeks flies by!- and Hermana Santos left Moroni and is now in Laurentu, Luque Sur. I am still here in Moroni - livin the city life - and Hermana Lundberg (or as the Paraguayans say, Hermana Alumbra) is my new comp!

It's been a rough week with our investigators. Many of them aren't progressing or keeping their commitments, which means they are not repenting and are not coming unto Christ. We keep working, praying and hoping for them though! We have been able to find some new investigators here and there. We've also been coming up with a new ward plan for the missionary work and we are hoping to start some fun activities throughout the week that people can invite their friends too to help us find new people to teach- we'll see how it goes!

Today for our Zone Activity we went to the Fundación Solaridad and helped set up wheel chairs that they will be handing out to those in need. It was super fun and it felt good to do something different to serve.

This week is also our Zone's "temple" week and we will be attending the temple tomorrow!!! I am so excited- I love the temple. Every P-day we have the opportunity to serve and clean the temple- and by cleaning, we mean to "sparkle" and wipe off finger prints; the temple doesn't really get dirty. In preparation for tomorrow, we went and cleaned the temple and we made sure that all of the dust particles that had settled since last week were all cleaned up. The temple really is a holy place. I am so grateful for temples!

With love sent from Paraguay,

Hermana Carr

Pi day and new comp!

Tranquilo sunday mornings on España, Central Asunción

Monday, March 7, 2016

Work Hard, Work Hard

¡Hola familia y amigos!

This week was a good one for Hermana Santos and I.

To finish off her training, Hermana Santos and I took the determination to si o si contact 70 personas this week. As missionaries we have the mandate to each talk with 10 people everyday - it sounds easy, and may be it is easy for some, but for us it's hard. We can't control the number of people that receive us and we can't control what commitments our investigators do or do not keep, but we realized we can control how many people we talk to - this week were determined and we made our goal! To celebrate we got Dominos today for P-day! ... now we're going to do it over again this week, and for the rest of our missions :)

The heat is starting to calm down a little and we are super grateful. We've cut down trees with machetes, we've seen break dancers street performing for the people at red lights and we even contacted houses to ask to use their bathrooms. This week has been crazy, and overall this change has been crazy with Hermana Santos - just as with all my comps, she's become a best friend of mine. Tomorrow we will start the new change and we are excited to see what will happen!

With love sent from Paraguay,

Hermana Carr

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Healings and Divisions

¡Hola familia y amigos!

This week has been loco crazy.

Last Monday we started off rough as Hermana Santos came down with a high fever, eye, back and muscle pains - all symptoms of dengue. We took it easy Tuesday, said a lot of prayers, drank lots of water like Hermana McMullin told us and by Wednesday she was back to 100%. No dengue here!!! We really think it was a miracle - Hermana Santos was not feeling good and usually dengue takes you out for a week or two. We're super greatful for her health!

Wednesday morning we attended an incredible devocional given by Elder David A. Bednar for the missions here in South America. We learned a lot and my comp and I have been applying what we learned. The greatest lesson I learned from the devocional was how to take notes and receive impressions from talks/devocionals. He gave us the advice based on the Book of Mormon; the Book of Mormon was written on two plates: 1) the large plates - a historical record of the events/what happened and 2) the small plates - the spiritual impressions, teachings, visions and writings of the profets. He said our notes should be more as the small plates (what the spirit is teaching to us), less of a word-for-word record of what the speaker says (what the speaker is teaching us).

This weekend we got to do divisions with Hermanas Jara and Lundberg in a neighboring area, Campo Grande. It was a lot of fun and I got to know a lot of members and investigators in Campo Grande. We also got to sleep in well-working air conditioning - the house in Campo Grande rocks! #tendermercies

The weekend was fun, but we are now back in home-sweet-home Moroni, ready to work hard. We only have a week left of this change - Hermana Santos is almost done with her training! And I feel like I'm just about to finish my second training - I've learned so much these last weeks.
I hope all is well! Thank you for your prayers for our health! They are answered!

With love sent from Paraguay,

Hermana Carr

We got a ton of Burger King coupons from a member so we celebrated Leap Year with Hermanas :)

Just a glimpse into the good times at Campo Grande