Baptism in Vallegrande

Monday, May 26, 2014


Hahaha thanks :D Hey!! So I got my package!!! I  just loved it! Please send beef jerky every single time :D ohhhhh it was so good. And I treasure the Reflections of Christ cd. So good. Thank  you so much! I also got the letter from Gma papa and coltin, and mckade and kieran´s letters (from Christmas!!!)! Have you received mine?? No it doesn´t always snow here. Probably not this year, but oh it´s soooooo cold!

The Parable of the Talents

The branch that I´m serving in is a bit hard to work with. Some days here are really tough. People occasionally flat out argue in the middle of church, and the ward counsel can be really tough. And some days I feel like my work here is in vain because of the problems. And yet, God knows what I need to be of better service in the future, and I've actually found that my determination to follow and be like the Savior has increased as I see the great need for the Savior in those around me. I´m even more determined now to do all I can to help this branch become functional. And another amazing thing is that despite some of the hardships with the members, i´m seeing more miracles here with less actives and investigators that I've seen in my mission to this point. It´s the hardest place I've served, but I've also been blessed more here. I've seen so much hope and so many wonderful things, now it´s my job to help everyone here see God´s great love for them as well :) And also with our unique experiences here in the world, this morning I was studying in the New Testament about the Parable of the Talents, and it really impacted me! This is when the Lord was talking  to the 12, and He gave this to them specifically. One man with 5 talents, one with 2, and one with 1 each according to his capabilities. Here is the very first thing, God, or the Master, gave each his talents, and He knows how much we can do with them. Those with 5 and 2 doubled their income exactly and received the very same blessings from the Master. Everyone has their own talents, and their own roles to play. Some of the Apostles had a larger part in sharing the Gospel, some in the organization of the church, and no matter how much great of part of the work each one had, as long as they did their best with what given, they received the blessings of the Lord. It´s so easy to compare ourselves with the success of others, but that´s not how the Lord looks at us. We each have a part to play, whether great or small, but the blessings of Eternal Life are the same for all. The thing is, if we do our best, the Lord will bless us and allow us to fulfill the work He had planned for us :)

President Willard

Ouch Cary! That doesn't sound like a lot of fun. Hope everything heals
up for you! haha as for you and wade, it´s just freezing here! I can´t
feel my toes. But for the good side this weekend we had a conference
here in Vallegrande with President and Sister Willard. It was us 4
missionaries and them! :D haha it was a really cool experience. I hope
you wade and mckade will get presidents of your missions as awesome as
President Willard. They treat everyone with such love, and they
always share with the spirit. Interviews with President are so cool; i
can feel the spirit so strongly. Today we are going to play some
soccer!!! I´m way pumped for that. we also have another baptism lined
up for the 14th of June! So things are all well for me :)

Good morning

How was your week?? Here we are just freezing cold!!!!!!!!! nighttime especially is just frigid! My companion lived in Peru, and from an area where he never experienced a world colder than about 55 degrees Fahrenheit :D so he´s just dying, he´s having a hard time sleeping at night, for me it's getting out of bed right at 630. haha its just so cold!

Monday, May 19, 2014

Finally some pictures, a baptism and service

Finally here are some pictures for you!! :) The first is of us four elders here in vallegrande at the top of a nearby mountain! We went up last monday, and it was a blast. For some reason there is a building on top of the mountain, and we were on top of that. :D It was a spectacular view!

But best of all was this weekend! Elder Cardenas and I with Madaly, who we baptized on Saturday. She has such a strong testimony of the church, and on sunday when she was confirmed, asked the president what she needed to do to serve a mission! That would be so cool in my mind!! I had the opportunity to baptize her, and it was a really cool experience. :)

Glad to hear about the service you did! Service is the best isn´t it? I will always be thankful to Greer for the amazing example of service that he gave me. I appreciate it and strive to serve much more because of him :)

(One thing we learned from Josh's Mother's Day call that we forgot to mention last week is that Josh has been made the senior companion already. He was pretty excited about that!)

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In my studies this week

In my studies this week, being converted unto the Lord has really impacted me. There is a difference between just having a testimony and actively living what you believe. The Lord I learned, requires that we each have a personal conversion. As the scriptures describe it, that we become new creatures, which to me, means that we literally have to change the parts of ourselves that are attached to the world. Something very hard to do sometimes. True discipleship means giving whatever thing to the Lord. And our everything. If we are to be converted, we have to be willing to drop everything. I left a lot of things of the world when I left on a mission. The Savior wants me to leave them forever. A lot of the mentality of returned missionaries is that they can finally go back to the world, listen to their old music, watch their old movies, and return the life from which they came. I´m starting to realize more and more that that isn´t what Heavenly Father wants. He wants us to be converted forever to Him. Sometimes that thought scares me, that maybe I won´t ever do some of the things I used to do. That I would really change so much. And yet, if I want to be a true disciple of the True and Living God, that´s what I must do. I hope that I can have this mighty change of heart. And I´ll be working and praying towards it. The first great commandment is that ´we love the Lord our God with all our heart.´ That´s my goal.

Here is a pic of all the priesthood here in vallegrande! and also vallegrande :)​Displaying IMG_0011.JPGDisplaying IMG_0728.JPGDisplaying IMG_0046.JPGDisplaying IMG_0044.JPG


Another baptizm picture.

Monday, May 12, 2014


A note from Josh's mom: Yesterday we got to Skype with Josh for 1/2 an hour for Mother's Day. It was so awesome to see great joy radiating from his face. And so fun to hear him struggle with English. He told us it was weird to be speaking in English, and there were many words he couldn't remember. He said Spanish is easy for him now, but that no one mistakes him for a native yet! :) Josh didn't write anything specifically for the blog this week, like he usually does, so I am going to share some things from our brief emails back and forth. He was having trouble with his internet connection.

Josh's mom shared something she studied this morning from Elder Timothy J Dyches of the Seventy at October 2013 Conference:
As we draw near to Him, we realize that mortality is meant to be difficult and that "opposition in all things" (2 Nephi 2:11) is not a flaw in the plan of salvation. Opposition, rather, is the indispensable element of mortality and strengthens our will and refines our choices. The vicissitudes of life help us fashion an eternal relationship with God—and engrave His image upon our countenance as we yield our hearts to Him (see Alma 5:19).
"This do in remembrance of me" (Luke 22:19) is what our Savior asked when He instituted what we call the sacrament. This ordinance with bread and water renews sacred covenants we have made with God and invites the power of the Atonement into our lives. We are healed by abandoning the habits and lifestyles that harden hearts and stiffen necks. When we lay down "the weapons of [our] rebellion" (Alma 23:7), we become "agents unto [ourselves]" (D&C 58:28), no longer blinded by the sophistry of Satan or deafened by the discordant noise of the secular world.
Josh's reply:
I do especially like your second highlighted quote, I find that to be one of the hardest things for me. To just change all the little things that are hardly noticible, and yet harden my heart. I think almost everyone has little habits that we ought to abandon in our lives. Even as a missionary! It´s so hard to be 100 percent obedient in everything. And yet that is what the Savior asks us to do, to be perfect. That´s where trials and repentence come in, so that we can gain the strength to overcome those flaws in our lives. haha maybe i just need a lot more hard trials in my life. But, if we are seeking to be humble, and asking the Lord through prayer for how we can change, the Spirit will always direct us in what we need to change. The key is learning to do that every single day. That´s where i´ve been a bit lazy. I just seem to forget!! I wish my memory was perfect sometimes and I could just remember all my personal revelations and promises with the Savior. The Book of mormon says remember so many times. It´s just everywhere. I´m going to read the BoM one day and count how often it´s used. Remember, is soooooo important!
Mom described her "miracle of the hip", and Josh replied:
I´ve seen healing miracles happen in my mission as well :) Faith really is a grand power!
Mom asked if it was hard to see us all yesterday for Mother's Day. Josh replied:
Nahh it wasn´t hard. I was just happy :) It was way awesome to see [Papa and Grandma and Coltin], it was a total suprise!!
Josh also expressed his delight that Dalan and Stormi, Bobby and Kelli, and Mike and Kymmy are all expecting right now! He is so excited to meet all the new additions when he gets back.

Monday, May 5, 2014


One thing i´ve learned this week is that we don´t always get to see the fruits of our work. For example Abinidai didn´t know if his teaching changed anyone, but there was one man who listened; Alma. And then Alma went and ended up converting almost all of the Lamanite nation!! Sometimes we just have to have patience and trust that what we are doing really is making a difference. Haha certainly not seeing the fruits helps you build faith and hope. The Lord has a plan. He will accomplish that plan and we each have a part of it. But He is the only one who gets to know just how much we did for Him.