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 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Yay for Order!

February 3, 2014

Dear Everyone,

This week has been great! This week has been a week of new beginnings!

We went to one of the Elder´s area called Lavalle and had an
asado! (like a big barbeque) My first one! Nobody could believe I
haven´t had one in my two months here. ha. The Argentine´s LOVE asado!
It was super fun and we were able to do some Zone bonding!

On Tuesday, we had Consejo, which is a meeting for all the leaders of
the mission that we have once a month. They talked a lot about how we
need to talk to everyone that we see on the street! Sometimes we
forget about that and just walk fast to our appointments because we
are late. But my companion and I have been on fire this week! We have
been stopping everyone on the street! A lot of them aren´t interested,
but we´ve found some awesome people because of it.

Especially because this is what happened this week. We both had really
strong feelings that we needed to start all over and look for new
investigators. None of our investigators have been progressing and we
felt like we can use our time doing more effective things. It was
really hard to leave them, but I know that they will be more prepared
soon. It took a lot of faith to start over, but we´ve already seen the

Last night the Elders found this kid, Maxi, that´s been going to
church in their ward and attending the youth camps and really wants to
be baptized! He lives in our area, so he would go to our ward. They
passed us the referral and we´re going to visit him tonight!

Also, last night the Carballos in our ward invited us over because
their cousin was in town and isn´t a member. She recently lost a child
and was really confused about where she was. We taught about the Plan
of Salvation and told her that her daughter was happy and that she has
the opportunity to be with her again. How blessed we are to know about
God´s plan for us! It brought a peace to the room and she was able to
feel the Spirit and know that everything would be okay. She lives in
Buenos Aires, so hopefully she will be baptized up there soon!

We´ve been doing a lot of cleaning in our apartment and our area book.
(I don´t think either have been cleaned very well in 2 years) We were
scared to start it, but as we have made our apartment and our area
book cleaner, we have felt the Spirit more and we are more receptive
during studies and planning to the promptings and inspiration that the
Lord wants to give us. Now I understand why it´s so important to have
a house of order. :)

We did exchanges this week with the sisters from Mendoza! I stayed in
my area with Hermana Norr from Washington and we talked to so many
people! We saw miracles and had so much fun! And ate some really good
alfajores. (they´re like little cakes)

They have the best junk food here. Alfajores, facturas (pastries),
pizza. And ALL way better than the ones I´ve ever tried in the states.
If there was one reason I ever moved here, it would be for the junk

This week we had a huge miracle with one of our recent converts in the
ward. Magali was baptized in November, right before I got here. But
when the missionary that taught her left, she got super sad and didn´t
want to come to church. We always passed by, but never could find her
and no one from the ward could find her or talk to her. On Thursday
our ward mission leader, Alan, invited us to go visit her. We went and
her mom said that she didn´t want to hear from us, so we sat down and
started sharing a message with her mom. She came out in the middle and
we instantly became best friends! She is the sweetest girl! She
started to share her story with us about why she stopped going to
church and why she distanced herself from everyone. She told us she
didn´t know why she came out, she just felt like she should. That
night she walked to the Bishop´s house to have an interview, and the
YSA group was there getting ready to go to a camp in Uspallata. So she
went home to pack and left with them. Apparently the camp went super
well because 5 of the YSA kids that were inactive left camp, deciding
to go on missions! It was sweet! Magali is coming back to church and
wants to come out to appointments with us this week!

This week has been crazy, but we´re excited to start fresh in our
apartment, in our finding,  and with ourselves. That´s the great thing
about the Gospel. We can always start over!

I love you all sooooo much! I am glad everything is going well and I
hope that it continues! We are so blessed! Thanks for informing me
about the Superbowl and relating it to missionary work! ha! I love
getting your letters and hearing how you all are doing! Keep on
keeping the faith and being examples! And have fun with the Mag´s this

Love love love!
Hermana McKenna Lawrence

Ps. The message that we shared at the Baptism of Jorge was the
Restoration! It brings the Spirit every time! :) Love you Uncle Larry
and Aunt Laurel! Oh story for you! The other day, I cut a picture of
the prophet out of the Liahona in the kid section and I turned it over
and Uncle Larry´s face was on it! So I turned the page and it was an
article that you wrote! About your dad :) I loved it so I cut it out
and put it in my journal! It was a fun surprise.

I love everyone!