Mis Seres Queridos,
I had a humbling experience last week. During my language study I realized that my whole mission until this point I have been pronouncing the 'e' in 'JesuCristo' like the long e we use in English. In other words, I have been pronouncing the Savior´s name and the name of the Church WRONG my entire mission. It was a humbling moment to realize no matter how many leaps and bounds I have made in my ability to testify in the Spanish Language, I'm still imperfect and have leagues to go! So I have been practicing all over again saying the Savior's name and striving to evaluate the rest of my abilities to notice the flaws and try to polish them. Not just in the language, but in my obedience as a missionary, fulfilling every aspect of my calling, etc. It has been a good excercise that is helping me learn to rely more fully on Heavenly Father and my Savior Jesus Christ, and to have patience with my human failings.
It has been a busy but marvelous week. Part of my calling here in Paraná with Hermana Diorio is "Las Hermanas Capacitadoras," known in English as Sister Training Leaders. Basically we're the visiting teachers of the Northern part of the mission, and we have the privilege of doing companion exchanges or divisions with 30 or so sisters. We have two divisions weekly, and so it involves a lot of traveling which is really neat. I have the joy of not only learning from the incredible people of Paraná, but also learning from the other Sister Missionaries and the people of La Paz, Santa Elena, Sunchales, Rafaela, Galvez, Colón, Concordia, etc. It has been a humbling but treasured experience. This week I had the joy of doing a "Choque de Fuerza" in Galvez with Hermana Aragon, Hermana Ordoñez, Hermana Dean (who was a visa waiter with me in the WATAC) and my companion. We 5 sisters spent the day in Galvez in two companion ships of 3 and 2, contacting up a storm and teaching in every home that let us enter. We saw miracles! Something I've learned during my time in this calling is that when we are united in our Missionary Purpose of inviting others to Christ, we can teach in Unity with ANY companion, even if we have only known them for a matter of hours. It was like a sleepover that night with the 5 of us under the same roof, 3 sisters on the floor and 2 in the bunk beds. A total blast.
Church was an adventure yesterday! Soledad started having contractions in Sacrament Meeting, and 5 of the Relief Society Sisters soon had her in a classroom laid between folding chairs with pillows and ice on her forehead. Two brethren gave her a priesthood blessing and luckily the contractions stopped. Her little fraternal twins are only 7 months, and we are just hoping they make it to the 8 month mark. Many memories of my early childhood, when you were pregnant with Tyler and Jordan, Mom. :) We are delighted with the way the Ward is fellow shipping Sole and her Kids. They are well taken care of and it brings us a sigh of relief to know that they are watched over. The Relief Society Sisters held an activity to sew baby clothes for Sole's twins this past Wednesday, lots of little knitted booties and felt beanie hats and Argentine wunzies. It's gonna kill me not to be able to hold them--it's a missionary rule that we can't hold babies or kids :( But obedience brings blessings!
Eric is a rock. He was confirmed yesterday. Saturday we had a lesson with him, and when we turned to Moroni 6, we were so surprised to see verse 4 marked up. We asked him what he liked about that verse and he began to offer his testimony of the importance of coming to this Church and the way it has changed his life. His backpack was open and spilling it's contents onto the floor, I glanced down and saw the Gospel Principles book, all of the pamphlets from our missionary lessons, and--I couldn't believe it--even a copy of preach my gospel. Miracles!
Preach my Gospel study for the week: KNOWLEDGE.
Paragraph #1--Seek learning by study and also by faith. See D&C 88:118. We've got to seek learning out of the best books, and have FAITH in the principles we learn. The best books we have are the scriptures and the words of the living prophets--the conference edition of the Ensign magazine. Heavenly Father asks us to gain an education of Science, History, Math, etc. too. See D&C 88:78-80. When we fill our lives with learning, we are far more able to serve the Lord. I cannot begin to list the many skills I learned from my parents that Have been to my benefit and advantage in serving the lord on my mission. mowing lawns and weeding for service in Gig Harbor, Washington. Maintaining a clean house despite the daily hustle and bustle--always cleaning the sink as the "last dish." Handling finances in a budget--it works just as great with Pesos as it did with dollars. Even down to reading scriptures out loud, on a regular family study basis, it has helped me here learn and grow tremendously in my Spanish pronunciation and literature as I have practiced aloud in habit. We ought to take every opportunity to learn life skills, ask humbly those whom surround us to teach us what they know, and seek learning by study and by faith. Faith is an essential element of ALL learning. When I study Spanish for 30 minutes daily, I have to foster faith that Father in Heaven will Help me Remember what I've studied and apply it in order to teach His Argentine Children.
My examples of Knowledge is my Father! My Dad is always learning something new--whether it's a new software language for computers, how to create his own app, creating a new furnishing in his wood shop, reading a new book, etc. My Dad is always learning! He has so many life skills it astounds me. He knows how to frame, how to sheet rock, how to fertilize the grass just right so that it comes up greener than St. Patrick's day in the spring. My Dad is also so apt to teaching by doing, an essential attribute of a true teacher. My Dad taught me Algebra by helping me DO algebra, and giving me homework sheets in the summer to help catch me up and prepare me for the following school year. He gets up early Saturdays to get our house and yard in order, and oft times has awakened us at 7 or 8 o clock Saturdays to help us get to work. Sometimes, Dad, I loathed waking up. You know that. But I can't thank you enough for the work ethic it has given me in the mission field. We do hard things, we get up early, we work until we do a "Dad" job and we do it over when we're lacking quality--but the rewards are beyond describable. And I am forever grateful for that. The hard work paired with knowledge and learning has helped me realize that I can do it!
Paragraph 2: How can scripture study help us gain a testimony? Also see D&C 42:61, Alma 17:2-3.
"Peter Lists knowledge along with Faith, Patience, Kindness, virtue as necessary aquisitions for a divine nature." -Bible Dictionary. See 2 peter 1:3-9
I love you my family! Keep working hard at work worth doing!
Hermana Mikayla Boren