Monday, April 7, 2014

Courage to Stand Strong

"Here are the pictures from General Conference! It was the first time I have been in a ward that provided a bus for the members to go to the stake center. I hope you can recognize some people, like my companion standing up. The lady in the very front of the picture is Sonia."
"One other new thing is that most of the wards provided lunch between sessions. I peeked into the Costa Bonita room to take pictures of my old friends from that ward, where I served. Elder Adamson just so happens to be serving there, too. I also got to see a baptism they had on Saturday between sessions, which was a special experience."
"I also included a picture from last week when my district cleaned the temple."
I was so busy last week I forgot to mention a few things. That happens quite often.That week I learned to cut trees with a machete doing service for our member neighbors. My district went to clean the temple in Asunción. All I did was dust the furniture, but just being in the ordinance and Celestial room is a great feeling.

And the feeling of participating in General Conference is always incredible. I noticed the common themes of avoiding pornography and defending the truth, both of which were very powerful. They were also mostly discussed on Saturday, so I hope not too many members are "Sleeping through the Restoration" and just watching the Sunday sessions. I really enjoyed those talks about having the courage to choose the right. I am sure they will help the 18 and 19-year-olds now serving missions around the world. I think many missionaries come with the false concept that though many doors will be slammed, the last door you knock right before giving up hope will always be a miraculous family that will have been praying to find the truth. Some days that does happen, but most of the time you just have to keep working whether the people want to hear the message or not. In all seriousness, I had no idea how many people would not want to hear this message. Now I do. We sow many, many seeds, but only a very small percentage grow fruits of eternal life. 

Speaking of missionary work, can you see why I said that Elder Ballard knows how to be an effective missionary? He followed-up on his commitments! That´s great. We are actually trying to do that more in our mission, too--follow-up in our conferences and zone trainings on what was taught the last time. I also liked how Elder Anderson added the idea of being a tree that cannot be blown away to Elder Maynes´s phrase from last conference, "You must become the rock the river cannot wash away."

Apart from that, I am sure you all had the parts you liked most, and I know most of what I learned was revelation for me and won´t be as interesting as what was meant for you. Just remember what Elder Hallstrom said and apply it!

The other interesting event this week was interviews with President Agazzani. The tone of those interviews has changed a lot. We just talk like friends now, which is nice. He told me he is really going to miss my group. He has mentioned that before, but never like the way he said it on Tuesday. But hey, he´ll be back in Cordoba the next July--Tell Tim Price to say hi!! 

I did write to Liza, though I don´t know if it´ll be enough. President Agazzani told me we´ll be going to the temple in May, so I will be able to put her name on the temple list. And I'll try the cream soda recipe....someday.

With all of those spiritual experiences, the missionaries in our zone weren´t able to teach much. We´ll have to get them jump-started again with the training tomorrow. In our area, we continue to visit the converts hoping that they will use their agency and fulfill their baptismal convenants. Sonia smoked her last cigarrettes on Saturday. The members are starting to get a little more used to her. She also escaped from the conference without telling us. She really wants to get baptized, and she is changing a lot. Here´s hoping she´s ready for this Saturday.

Lots of Love,
Elder Morgan the Older

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