Monday, August 4, 2014

Yay for the Mission!

August 4th, 2014

Well family, this is it... the last one. 

There are not a lot of words that can describe my whole entire mission. Most of the words will never come close to explaining how incredible of a journey it has been. And it's not over yet!  

This week we travelled to Mendoza for my last leadership council. President Goates gave us ancients in the mission the chance to share our final testimony and what we have learned. 

I have a gigantic list, but you'll hear more about it later. Mostly, I have learned that the Gospel of Jesus Christ is the only way to happiness in this life and the next. The Plan of Salvation is real and God gave it to us because He wants us to be happy. All of us. Our brothers and sisters who don't yet remember the plan they accepted are waiting for us to remind them. And we can remind them through keeping our covenants we make with our Heavenly Father. 

Jesus Christ lives. And His power is real. It is shown through worthy Priesthood holders and the faith of every one of God's children. He runs the church. He forgives. He loves. And it is through Him that the Plan of Happiness is possible. It is through Him that all of us can be made perfect. This is why we do what we do. This is why I do what I am doing.

Like Dad said, I have a new foundation. A foundation built on the undeniable testimony I have gained of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. It wasn't easy to build. And it will never be a perfect foundation, but it's a start. And I have a whole life ahead of me to keep buildilng. 

I know these are just words, but they really are a part of me. And the experiences I've had here on the mission make those words real. I think I've grown a lot. Sadly, not in stature. But a couple of bad falls and dog bites really did me some good. I wouldn't say I've grown up, but grown. And that's it. 

This last week will be full of miracles I am sure of it! Thank you for the letters, the support, the prayers, and the love. It pushes me along and blesses the people of Argentina. 

I love you all and I wish you the best this week! See you soooon! 

Love love love, 
Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Two weeks to go and there is so much to be done!

July 28, 2014

Hello for the second to last time! 

This week was incredible! Micaela was baptized and confirmed a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints! Her mom came to the baptism and later to church on Sunday to see her confirmed! Her mom is starting to support more and we've been able to teach her a couple of times, so that is a miracle! I have confidence that the whole family will follow soon :) 

Hermana Hill and I made brownies for the baptism and we had to carry them the 10 blocks to the chapel. We made more friends in those 10 blocks then we usually do in a day! Blondes and brownies... not such a good idea. 

I realized this week that even though I have little time, I have A LOT left to learn! And I'm gonna learn all that I can before I come home! There are so many more people to help, so many more testimonies to be shared and so many more Argentine lunches to be eaten. I am a servant of Jesus Christ and I will finish strong! 

I love you all! I hope everything is going well with school starting! I wish you all so much luck and I am praying for you every second! 

With much amor,

Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Yay for Crazy Days!

July 21, 2014


This week has been great! I'm feeling better and working really hard! We had a couple of crazy days, but it's been going great! 

We worked so hard and were sure that 10 of our investigators were going to come to church on Sunday. They all said they would be coming and we had set it up with different members to invite each of them to sit with them and show them where their classes were. Well, nobody came. Not 1. And I was really sad. But during the Sacrament, I thought about how the Savior and how He invites us to be better all the time, and we always fall short. It doesn't feel good. But He suffered for that. He knows our hearts, and our desires and never gets mad when we don't do what we could've done, He just invites us to try harder. I realized how much I loved my investigators and how sad I was when they didn't do what I know will help them. The Lord loves them even more than I do, and always invites them again. So try again we will. 

Mikaela came with us to a baptism this weekend and was way excited! She didn't come to church because they went out of town, but she is excited and ready to be baptized this Saturday! So I'll send pictures of it next week! 

I hope your summer is going well! And good luck starting school these next couple of weeks! Thank you so much for your letters and prayers! I love you all so much! 


Love love love
Hermana Lawrence 

Monday, June 9, 2014


June 9, 2014

I can't even believe that Cydnie is a teenager!!!! Congrats girl! I hope you have an amazing day and enjoy every second of it! 

It's so good to hear from you all this week! Not gonna lie, it was one of the harder weeks of my mission, but we perservered and are ready to keep working hard! We talked to everyone and their DOG this week, and everyone said no. Some people even ran away from us, but they are still children of God, and one day they will find the gospel. :) 

On the plus side, four of our investigators came to church! Even though we couldn't find them at all this week. So that was sweet! Maria the old lady we are teaching loved it! We had a lesson about baptism and afterwards she felt so bad that she had been baptized as a baby. She said 'I didn't know that was bad!' ha! But she is looking so hard for her answer, so I KNOW she will be baptized soon! Mikaela didn't come again this week.. and now she's headed to Cordoba for the week.. but we'll find her again! And Gonzalo and Daniela came to church so that was great! They are so prepared and will be married and baptized soon as well! 

Asi que, despite the hard times of the week, miracles are happening here in San Luis! And I love it!

I am so glad that you are doing well and I know the Lord will continue to bless us as we are serving Him! I'm so proud of my family and I am always praying for you!

Love you sooooo much! 
Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Yay for San Luis!

May 26, 2014

Mis queridos, 

First of all, shoutouts: 

Good luck in your half marathon today!!!!! you'll all do so great! You have a fan in Argentina! 

Also, CARLIE BUSH! Congrats on your new baby!!!!!! I am so excited for you guys, you'll be amazing parents! You also have a fan in Argentina! 

Well, this week I grew. Sadly, not in stature.. but I feel a little bit more spiritually "filled". 

San Luis is almost like a different country than Mendoza! The food, the people, the buildings, the streets, the dogs.. ALL DIFFERENT. But the good news is, I LOVE IT HERE! 

We have a pretty big ward here and they are all unified in building each other up and expanding God's kingdom. I hope one day to raise a family like the ones found here in San Luis. Everyone learns from each other, seeks to help and love each other, and they just have fun! They all have so much faith and show it in every little decision they make. 

I've been studying this week a talk by President Eyring called "Mountains to Climb". He talks about building our foundation of faith so that when the mountains come, we will have the strength to climb them. Like Nephi says, "I know that the Lord giveth no commandment unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them." He always prepares a way. We may not understand that way as much as He does, but with faith, we won't need to understand. 

President Eyring says that the way to build our foundation of faith is 1. the base - our personal integrity, choosing the right in every decision placed before us, and 2. the rest- the Gospel of Jesus Christ and all of the Priesthood ordinance and coventants that come with it. 

The members of the Pringles ward are STRONG. And from what I've seen, it is because they are constantly righteous and constantly remember their covenants and seek to help others make and keep those sacred covenants. 

This all makes sense in my head, sorry. But that's what I'm learning from my time here in San Luis. My faith is growing and we are seeing miracles! 

Right now we are teaching a girl named Mikaela. Her parents raised her in the Catholic church, but she never felt close to God there. The Elders stopped her on the street last week and invited her to church. She came and she loved it! Now she is praying and reading the Book of Mormon and she is excited to have a relationship with her Heavenly Father. I know He is listenting to her. She has a baptismal date for the 7th of June

Yesterday was the Argentine Independence Day, so we got together with the ward for a Locro on Saturday. If you look it up, you'll know how excited I was to eat it.. 

Today we are headed over to Mendoza because tomorrow we have our last leader's meeting with President Avila before he leaves! Que triste! 

But I know this week will be even more full of miracles and learning! Because I still have MUCHO TIEMPO to work hard! 

I love you all and I hope things are going well! You're in my prayers! 

Hermana McKenna Lawrence
2 Ne 31:20  

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Yay for Transfers!

May 19, 2014

I'm running out of creative titles.. 

So I'm leaving my area! And I will die in.... San Luis! My area is called Pringles but its pronounced "preen-glaze". Am I craving American chips? Yes. I leave on Wendesday and I'm so excited! 

My new companion will be Hermana Lybbert! She came with me to California back in the day. She's from Washinton and went to BYU Idaho. She's super sweet and I'm super excited to get to know her and learn from her. This transfer will only be four weeks long and then comes the 8 week transfer to welcome in the new mission president. And then I'll be home! Crazy! 

It is going way too fast! The week was unbelivably fast! For P-day we went and toured a winery. ha! It was cool. But I probs won't ever do it again. It smelled way bad like drunk people. But it was cool to see how they make wine. Made me never want to drink it so that's good! ha. 

We had zone meeting this week and then a talent show in our branch. Hermana Barney and I did a special presentation of "chin heads". Everyone loved it! I'll send the video soon when I have a better computer in San Luis! Woohoo! It was a lot of fun. 

Today we're going hiking, so you'll get lots of cool pictures next week! 

Sadly, I have to leave, but David Olivera is getting baptized next week! A miracle happened with him this week. He still was waiting for his answer and wanted to know that God loved him before he got baptized. So we promised him that that night, if he knelt down and prayed and then waited a little to listen for his answer, he would feel it. He said he prayed and then woke up at 2 in the morning because he couldn't sleep. He went downstairs and saw a man dressed in white. The man told him that God loved him and had a special purpose for him. He felt peace and told us that he wanted to get baptized as soon as possible. Sweet huh! He is way excited! I'm sad I'll miss it, but I know it will be beautiful! 

Well, I love you all and I hope all is going well! I am praying for you always! 

Good luck with everything this week! 

Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Yay for Exchanges!

This week was way great! Full of more meetings and more learning and more work and more fun! 

We went up to Tunuyan, the area of the other sisters in our zone, and did exchanges! It was super fun and we saw a ton of miracles! 

Right now, in our area, we are focusing on the Olivera Family. They are Jehovah´s Witnesses, but they are not attending right now. The dad, David, is the most interested and we are sure he will be baptized really soon! He came to church by himself this week, but we are working on getting the family more involved. They'll come around soon! They have 3 of the cutest little boys ever and they are our best friends! Alejandro (8), Neuel (4), and Diago (2)! 

I am getting way excited to talk to you on Sunday

And this next week we will have a lot more time to stay in our area. So we will work really hard and teach everyone and their dog about the Gospel! 

I feel like I learn the same thing every week, but deeper. ha. This week I learned again that the Gospel really is soooo simple! All God asks us to do is keep His commandments and everything will turn out the way it's supposed to. Our Father in Heaven loves us, so He sent His Son, Jesus Christ to be our perfect example. And if we follow Him, we will be happy. Being an instrument in the Lord's hands makes me the most happiest I have ever been, and I know that will stay true forever. 

I still love being a missionary! 
I am continually grateful for your love and prayers! 
And I love you all so much! 

Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Yay for being a Missionary!

April 21, 2014

I can honestly say that it is still exciting to get up and start a new day every day! I love being the Lord's servant and I will serve Him forever! 

This week was Easter! But Argentina doesn't focus on Easter as much as it does, the Semana Santa or Holy Week. Most everyone is Catholic so they focus a lot on the dark day of Friday.Friday there was literally no one out side. They don't eat meat all week, only fish, and then on Sunday they have a huge Asado to make up for all the meat they didn't eat in the Semana Santa. haha. Sunday didn't really feel like Easter at first. The talks in Sacrament meeting had nothing to do with Easter and no one even said Happy Easter.. Hermana Barney and I ate chocolate eggs and THEN when we went to our leaders meeting, the leaders had brought back packages and letters from the office, so I got my birthday package with the Easter Eggs in it!!!! Woohoo! Right on Easter! Thanks for making Easter feel like home! Also, I got the debit card, so now I can buy a jacket. ha. Thank you so much! 

This week was super great! Hermana Barney and I are working so hard! We found a ton of new investigators this week, left behind some that weren't progressing and had the baptism of Lourdes! She's 13 and super sweet! The baptism was beautiful and she had a lot of great support from the branch and her family! It was a great weekend! 

I'm so glad that you all had a great Easter! You all look so great and so big! Austin is HUGE! It's getting close to that day and I'm getting all the mixed emotions that come with dying on your mission. ha. Excited, sad, nervous, and overwhelmed. ha. But I know that when the time comes I will be ready. We are coming home more and more exhausted every night because we are giving it our all and we feel so great! 

I know the Lord is helping us in this great work! I feel His hand everyday in the miracles we see and the happiness we see in the people we teach. I love being a missionary and I love teaching the Gospel to everyone I see! I will be sad when it all ends, but right now I'm just loving life! 

The work keeps advancing, the Gospel is truer than ever, and Jesus Christ is my Savior! I know if I follow Him, I will be happy. He lives! For all of us! 

I love you all! 
Hermana Lawrence

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Yay for Conference! Boo that there's no more:(

April 7, 2014


This week was super great! A lot of stress relieving and now I'm ready to jump up and work hard this transfer! 

Transfer doctrine says that I'm staying here next transfer! With my new companion Hermana Barney! She is from Utah and came out the same time as me! She is super sweet and cute and we will have a lot of fun and work super hard! I'm way excited! 

I'm feeling a lot better! The bruise from my fall is gone, the cold and flu is finally gone, and I'm feeling healthy and happy! I'm even eating apples every day! 

Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday we were down in Mendoza having fun! ha. Hermana Dote had to do some paperwork for her Visa so we went down Monday night and stayed in the apartment of the Mission Nurse, Hermana Ashby! She is my best friend! She told us stories about her son and her fiancee and tried to set us up with her other son who is in Peru on his mission. ha! 

Then Tuesday, we had Leadership Council with Presidente Avila and all the STL's and Zone Leaders of the mission. It was super great! Gave me more excitement to keep working! We learned a lot about Baptism and how it is a Sacred covenant, and how we need to help our investigators to know that it is a covenant for life! They talked about that a lot in the General Woman's meeting last week too! I loved it! It really is so important! And it feels so good to fulfill our covenants and help others. 

Tuesday night, all the Sisters from the mission came to the mission home and we ate a super yummy dinner and then slept in a hotel! The next morning we woke up, did yoga with the nurse and talked about health. ha. Then we played some fun games and got dressed to start the conference. They taught us about not hurting our companion's feelings, about communication, companionship inventory and later about why we are here and our role as Sister Missionaries. I loved it, learned a ton and we all got to relax and just let out all the stress we had inside of us. ha. I feel like every sister missionary should be able to go to a spa for 2 days in the middle of their mission. No, but seriously, I feel a ton better and I'm so ready to get down to work this transfer! 

Thursday and Friday we worked hard and had some awesome lessons! We had a surprise baptism on Saturday because the Elder's investigator Soledad moved into our area last minute! So she was baptised on Saturday and her daughter, Lourdes,. wants to be baptized next week! woohoo! So we are going by to teach her a couple times this week :) I'll send pictures of the baptism soon! 

Conference was amazing! Sadly, we had to watch it in Spanish, and I didn't understand a lot of it, but it was amazing to see that the same Spirit was there! They are still the words of God and I know that everything they said was true! I can't wait till they are up on so I can print them! 

I love you all and I hope that you have such a great week! Keep on keeping on and you are in my prayers always!!!!!! 

Love love love! 

Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Monday, March 3, 2014

New adventures and not so new, but equally great companion!

Dear Family, 

Remember when I told you I was coming to be with Hermana Lopez?? So I get off the bus and my new companion, HERMANA DOTE, came to get me! They all heard wrong on the telephone and it got passed to me as Hermana Lopez.. hah. We don´t even have an Hermana Lopez in the mission! ja! 

It is so good to be with Hermana Dote again! It feels like we weren´t even apart ever and we just picked up back where we left off! We´re already friends and we already know how to teach well together so that made the transition super easy! 

Our area is BEAUTIFUL! Freezing cold and right next to the mountains! The fruit here is super good, so I´mma eat good this transfer :) The members in the branch are incredible and all the young women love us! The dogs here are kind of nicer.. but still scary. It´s a more rural area, but still nice and there aren´t too many bugs so we´re good there too! :) 

Unfortunately, the internet in our area is realllllly stinky... so sorry but I won´t be able to send pictures this transfer... I´m going to go print them out so you might get some in the mail in 2 months! ja.... sorry...... 

We´ve had a lot of meetings this week so we had to travel 3 hours back to Mendoza and then an hour to another meeting in Tunuyan. So I haven´t gotten to know everyone we´re teaching this week.. but we should have more time this next week!

We teach primary in our branch because there are not enough people to do it. ha. But it was sooooo fun! 

Fast and Testimony meeting was amazing! I felt the Spirit so strong and the Saints here have incredible testimonies! The church really is the same everywhere and it really is led by Jesus Christ, himself! 

I´m so glad to hear that the Temple Dedication and Cultural Celebration went so well! I´m so proud of my family! Thank you for being such a good example to me! 

Well, I love you all and I LOVED your letters this week! I am printing them all out and I just sent some letters home on Friday! Hopefully you get them soon! 

I´m glad you got my Tang! It´s wayyyy better than what we have in the States! ha. I love it! 

Love you love you love you!!!! Thank you for everything! 
You´re in my prayers!
Your missionary,  
Hermana McKenna Lawrence 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Yay for more surprises!

Dear Family, 

This week has been nuts! On Tuesday, I got almost the worst sunburn of my whole life. Then Thursday, surprise! We wore scarves because it was freezing cold and raining! We had to unpack all of our winter clothes again! ha. From Thursday till Sunday it was freezing and I don´t think it ever stopped raining. And today, HOT. Again. 

We came home soaked every day, but I had fun because I got to wear my cute rain boots :) There was absolutely NO ONE on the streets and when we knocked on doors, no one wanted to let us in because we were sopping wet! They told us "go home, you´re going to get sick!) haha. 

One lady, Neli, told us that the Lord has seen the sacrifice we´ve made, and we were good for the day. ha. My companion and I later talked about the sacrifice the Savior made for us and how what He did was way harder. ha. So we worked even harder the rest of the night. :) We didn´t see a ton of success, but we know the blessings are coming! 

Thank you everyone for the birthday wishes! My birthday was great! And so was this week! 

On Monday, we got locked in the chapel with the Elders from our zone and had to wait a couple of hours for the Bishop to come let us out. ha. But Tuesday, we got back to work and worked hard! 

Apparently, mission birthdays are to get fat. In district meeting, we had facturas, at lunch, we had a huge plate of Peruvian party food that they only make for special occasions, my companion bought me ice cream, an investigator gave me coke and cookies and then lunch on Friday was another celebration with cake! ha. My diet starts today. 

But my birthday was really great! We worked hard, arrived at our apartment exhausted and satisfied :) and sun burnt. 

Miracles of the week: 

- the other day we met this little girl in the street. Her name is Sofia and she is like 7 years old. She stopped us and said, Hey what are you doing? So we told her we were missionaries and she said she loves to help the Father in her Catholic church! She told us she believes in God and Jesus Christ and we asked her where she lived. The next day we stopped by and met her mom, Antonela who is pregnant with another one :) She was super excited to meet us and so grateful that her daughter stopped to talk to us in the street. We have another lesson with them this week! :) 

on Wednesday we walked a ton and hardly found anyone. We were on our way to visit a Potential Investigator when my companion said wait. We stopped in our tracks and around the corner came this lady and her daughter. We talked to them and 30 seconds into the conversation, the cars in the street we would´ve just crossed, crashed. The Lord really protects His missionaries! The lady´s name was Cristina and she told us that she was a member and wanted to take her 9 kids to church, but didn´t know where the church was in her area. She´s not in our area, but I know the Elder´s will take good care of her where she lives :) 

Yay for miracles! 

This week in my studies and observations I have been learning a lot about how much the Gospel blesses families. On a mission, we see so many families every day, some of them happy, some of them not so much. Obviously, no family is perfect and we all have our problems, but it is not a surprise to me that the happy families are the ones who include Jesus Christ in their home life. They read the scriptures together, pray together, and have weekly Family Home Evenings. I know we were blessed with families to help us to learn to do these things. We all have personal problems but we cannot get through them or learn to get through them without our families. And it´s those small and simple things that make all the difference. I don´t have my family with me right now, and as a Missionary, we have time set apart permanantly to read and pray. But I have noticed a huge difference when I do it just because I´m supposed to and when I do it because I remember it has eternal consequences. I know sometimes it seems like no one pays attention anyways, or it takes to long to do it, but I am extremely grateful that we read and prayed as a family before the mission. And I am grateful for the knowledge I am gaining on my mission of how important that was and is for the rest of my life. I know you will recieve blessings as you continue to set aside that time to read the scriptues and pray together. It really is of eternal consequence. :) 

"Y así vemos que por pequeños medios el Señor puede realizar grandes cosas." 1 Nephi 16:29 - sorry I only have my Spanish Scriptures. But it says that through small means, the Lord can bring to pass great things. God works through the small and simple things. But Satan knows that too. And he will do everything he can to get us to not remember those things. 

The Gospel is made of small and simple things, including small and simple blessings. I have noticed those a lot this week. From a little girl stopping us in the street to a cold day, the Lord has blessed us this week, even if it´s not in the way we expected Him to. 

I send my love and prayers your way! And some fun pictures! Love you!!!! 
Hermana McKenna Lawrence