Tuesday, June 18, 2013


So today we had cambios again, but this was the BIG one which determines which mission boundaries we will remain in starting on July 1.  I had kind of mixed feelings about it - when we were in San Javier they told us all to basically plan on being sent to Rancagua, and then as soon as I got used to the idea they sent me back "inside" the Concepción mission boundaries here in Chillán.  But as I had never served more than two cambios in any one sector, I knew that my chances of getting sucked into the Rancagua vortex hadn´t been completely eliminated.
Anyway, the results are in, and (drumroll please...) Hermana Snyder and I are staying together in Libertador for another eight weeks!  This also means that I will be staying in the Misión Chile Concepción for the duration of my mission as well!  (Sorry, David Archuleta fans, I won´t be sending yáll any pictures of Davie-the-missionary.  Though I hear he´s a district leader, so maybe you can imagine him better now that you know that!)
They did make some crazy changes in our house, though, as they pulled out one set of Hermanas (Hermana Lovell and her new companion Hermana Martínez) from our ward and are putting elders in their place, while the other sisters, who will continue to live in our house, will begin to work in what was previously a ward with four elders, just on the other side of the maid road from our sector.  So now in our church building on Sundays there will be two wards with two elders and two sisters apiece.  It will be a strange adjustment, but it will be nice to have that extra priesthood support in the ward.  I remember my first couple of weeks in San Javier it was SO WEIRD having the Elders there all the time, but then we got to like it a lot, so hopefully that is how it will go for us this time around as well.
In other transfer news, Hermana Phelps is getting sent to Chillancito in Conce, to be companions with Hermana Miskin again!  So strange to end up with one of your old companions, but this time they are going to be in a trio and they will be training, like Hermana Fajardo and I did with Hermana Holland.  Hermana Frandsen is also staying in Conce, but she is getting sent to Talcahuano, which is the portion of the mission we sucked up from Conce Sur.  I am really glad that we are both staying in the same mission - we started this thing together and we´d darn well better end it together, too!  Hermana Fajardo is still in San Javier, so she is going to Rancagua, and dude I am going to miss her!  She is so totally awesome.  But I know she is where she needs to be and that Rancagua just got one of the best missionaries in the world!!!!
So one little sad thing about the boundary change is that in the boundaries that are headed north, there are 16 Hermanas.  In the boundaries we gained to the south, only 4.  :(  Sad day to lose a dozen Hermanas from our mission, but I guess that must be how the Lord wants it.
So yesterday in Church we were in Sunday School when the bishop beckoned Hermanas Lovell and Phelps out into the hallway (Hermana Snyder and I were in charge of teaching the class) and tells them that the Elders´ Quorom had been in charge of providing the talks for Sacrament meeting and apparently nobody had come prepared, so suddenly we missionaries are in charge of the entire program, except for a musical number provided by the Primary (a Father´s Day tradition, of course!).  So that was fun.  We grabbed our scriptures and each came up with something nice and short and then threw in another musical number just for good measure.
Being Father´s Day, I gave my talk on our Heavenly Father.  I don`t know why, buit I don´t remember it ever occurring to me before to honor our Heavenly Father as much on Father´s Day as our eartly fathers and grandfathers, but I was glad that it finally did.  I shared several scriptures about how He is the Father of our spirits, how we are created in His image, and how He loves us and has provided us with the Gospel and the Plan of Salvation in order to be able to bless us with all that He has.  In culmination, I read John 3:16-17, which has become one of my favorite scriptures here in the mission:

"For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
"For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved."
I know that what this scripture says is true.  Sometimes keeping the commandments and repenting seem like really hard, painful things to do, and I know that it certainly isn´t meant to be easy.  But it is a blessing.  God sent His Son to teach us the way, to set the example, and help us to know how we can be able to come to receive all the blessings that God has to bestow upon us.  He did not send the Savior so that we would feel guilty when we sinned, but so that we would be ABLE to repent and become free of stain.  He does not give us commandments so that we feel restricted or limited, but so that we can be free of pain and sorrow and be prepared to receive all the He hath.  He loves us SO VERY MUCH and He wants all of us to be able to participate in His celestial glory.  I am so very grateful for the opportunity He has given me to learn His gospel and try to live it and to share it with others.

This week for your commitment, I want you all to take the opportunity to celebrate Father´s Day by honoring our Heavenly Father.  Take some time to pray and thank Him for all the He has given you, and show Him your gratitude and love by doing your best to live His commandments and do His will.  I want to do the same.
Well, gotta get going now.  I love you all and am so very grateful for you!

Have a great week!



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