Monday, July 27, 2015

July 27, 2015

 Lunch with the familia Echeverria. Capos! so good.

My dearest family and friends,

What a fantastic week it has been here in the mission. Crazy as ever, but more enjoyable then ever. I have been a witness of so many of the Lord's miracles this week, it has been incredible to see to tell you the truth. I have loved ever minute of working with the missionaries and have learned SO much from them. They are all incredible missionaries and it has been a privilege to work along side them.

I gotta tell you that travelling around is definitely interesting and always a new adventure! I've been living off oatmeal and bananas this past week and a half haha, it's pretty pretty awesome. My air-mattress is pretty comfortable though! This might just be the most enjoyable time of my mission, I really don't know why but It's just been something so special to me.

So we started this week off in Merlo. I went to Altos de Merlo B with Elder Rawlins and with Elder Farias. Things went really well and we were able to work really hard together. They are both such fantastic and humble missionaries, this was something I admire about them both. We saw some awesome miracles as well! On Wednesday we found a lady who listened to the missionaries before and she has 3 kids and is super interested. Wednesday night we also found a man who had recently been abandoned by his wife and kids, so we literally showed up at the perfect time. He told us he had been praying for a way out and then we showed up, was pretty special.

Next I was in Paso del Rey with Elder Ruiz and Elder Rodriguez. I was super impressed by their knowledge and ability for having so little time in the mission, I'm always so amazed by how awesome the young missionaries are! We worked really hard for the 2 days we were together. They have 2 awesome families they are working with.. and one of the families has a marriage date already.. such studs! 

Last off I was with Elder Healey and Elder Dye. Elder Healey is Tanner Murphy´s cousin! They are both super capos and it was a blast working with them. We had such a successful day together and we worked super hard! We ended up finishing with about 5 news and 6 lessons, and we were so blessed by the Lord! I love their work effort, they are both such hard working missionaries and have so many talents I was super impressed and learned so much from them! Elder Healey is a natural leader. His family should be proud! haha.

On Sunday I worked with Elder Child and we worked in the fuerte apache. It's a super famous ghetto down here in Argentina. It's huge! look it up online haha it's crazy.. but it was super awesome and we had a great time.

I think more then anything I have learned the importance of urgency and not procrastinating this past little bit. Sometimes in life, or in the mission we always think there is a more opportune, or better moment to do something. But having 2 days with each companionship has helped me have the desire to work and pray for miracles every single day and not wait... cause many times their is no tomorrow! Just a cool thing I have learned.

Overall things went fantastic this week. I learned a ton from the missionaries and I feel super blessed. I can't believe how the time flies by. I have been enjoying so much this assignment and I am super excited for this next week.

Can't believe it's the last week. Really doesn't seem real to me. But you better be sure that it's gonna be the best :)

Love you all!
Elder Hansen.

Monday, July 20, 2015

July 20, 2015

Baptism of Oscar, Andrea, and Maria 

Hola hola!

Thank you all so much for the letters. Looks like you all had a great week, good to hear! Glad that things went well!

What a fantastic week it has been here in the mission. It is incredible how fast the time flies by. This week has been awesome for many different reasons. 

So I officially am no longer in Rodriguez, and technically don't have an area anymore. But Elder Collins and I are companions again which I am loving! We have been called to travel in the mission and do divisions with the Elders out in the mission field, and boy is it a blast! We are pretty much just traveling around with a sleeping bag, air mattress and a change of clothes haha.. sounds like camping no? Last week we were able to go to 2 different areas and we are hoping to go to 3 this week. We just travel in a bus from area to area and eat whatever we can find. It's a pretty incredible opportunity. I'm learning a ton from the missionaries and we have been able to see so many miracles!

I love the tender mercies of the Lord. So President allowed me to go to the baptism of Oscar, Andrea, and Maria!! I can't express my joy and happiness for them, they are such amazing people and it was such a tender moment for me to be able to witness their baptism, and see their big day finally come. They are incredible. I was given the opportunity to share my testimony in the baptismal service and I was pretty emotional, it was a very special moment for me and it really meant a ton. It was amazing to see Oscar cry haha, it was the first time I have ever seen him tear up.. shows just how powerful the Spirit is and just how much it can touch the heart of one.It had to be one of the highlights of my mission, I was so happy for them. They also go married on Friday.. I didn't go but Elder Schoonover told me it was awesome.. so cool! Eternal families :)

Today we decided to go visit some our converts during our Pday since we were close! So Elder Collins and I were able to go visit Ruben and Osvaldo.. it was so cool to see them and hear how they are doing. Another tender mercy from the Lord for sure. I love the Gospel and how it changes the heart and lives of one.

This week has been such a blessing. Elder Collins and I seriously love the mission, and the missionaries more than we can express. We feel so privileged, and also under qualified.. we really are trying to make whatever difference we can, to be able to bless the lives of others... whether it be the missionaries or their investigators. I thank our Heavenly Father every day for this amazing opportunity to serve and I really can't express what it means to me. I think if their is one thing I have learnt in the mission is charity, and it's all come from coming to know better my Saviour. 

I love you all. Hope you know that. I feel so blessed for all that I have. Thanks for being apart of my life. So on the 3rd I don't know if I will be writing or not, but I will maybe have a moment. I had an idea. I wanted to invite you all to share you testimonies with me that last day, I think it will be pretty cool and special.

Well time to grab my sleeping back and air mattress and get to work :) haha

Love you all!
Elder Hansen.

Friday, July 17, 2015

July 13, 2015

Me and the Robertsons.

General Rodriguez Ward

Hey Fam,

Wow what an amazing week this has been. It has been one that has been super crazy to tell you the truth. We continued to be super blessed though. So it started out with a great Zone meeting, and then lots of tramites which was kind of the down part but we were happy to get those all over with. Our ward also did an activity for the 9th of July which was incredible. the 9th is Argentine indepence day, so we ate locro (which is like argentine stew) and it was a great day! After they had a couple traditional dances and stuff. They gave a lot of the investigators an assignment in the activity which was incredible, our investigators were there are like 6 in the morning cooking and preparing!  They all felt like they had a big responsibility in all that was going on. It was cool to see. 

This weekend was also a special experience for me. Today we had a testimony meeting with the missionaries that were going home, It was awesome to see the growth of the missionaries that I have worked closely with, I felt such a pride in having had the opportunity to serve with them. They really are such amazing people.

The other day we did divisions with Francisco Alvarez and I went with Elder Pratt, things went great and I was able to learn a lot about him and from him! I really enjoyed getting to know him, and getting to know how his testimony has changed during the mission. He expressed how on the mission he has gained a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon.. At the end of the night we had a lesson about the restoration and as I heard him share his testimony about the book of mormon it was sooo powerful, and so incredible to see how simple yet powerful it was. I am always so amazed and strengthened by the faith and power of other missionaries, it really is such a blessing to get to know them.

So in our area things are going great. This weekend we have the goal to have 4 baptisms. We have Oscar and Andrea who are going to be married this Friday and baptized Saturday! I'm more then excited! We have Maria who will also be getting baptized with them, and then we are praying for a miracle with Florencia. She is Maria´s grand daughter. She loves the church a lot and even passed her baptism interview she is just a little hesistant and timid but we are praying to know how we can help her! So we are super excited about that.

So our other investigators Eduardo and Diana didn't come to church yesterday which made us really sad. We are going to have to work with them for August now, but they are a huge possibility for that month. Kevin and his family (Family Cantero) came to church yesterday for the 2nd week in a row, that was awesome. Kevin is 10 and has a huge desire to get baptized, so we are helping his dad get active again so he can baptize him! Right now he has a baptismal date for the middle of August. 

We also saw a huge miracle the other day as well. We met a man named Alberto who has lived in Argentina for 23 years now, but is from Paraguay. So I guess when he was in Paraguay he went to church for 2 years with his friend! But he never really once got in contact with missionaries, so never really progressed towards baptism. The other day we expressed our desire and our goal to help him come to know that this is God's true church, and as we ended the Restoration my companion invited him to be baptized and he accepted! It was soo powerful! He has a ton of knowledge, now we just need to help him change this knowledge into a testimony, so we are super excited to work with him for August.

Well I can tell you that I love this work with all my heart. It brings such peace and happiness to my life and it has blessed me beyond measure. But  beyond anything I have seen how the Lord has blessed the lives of coutnless people, and how he has allowed me to witness it all. The other night when I saw some of my converts and families I had taught I felt so humbled, and so blessed to have had the opportunity to meet and be apart of all of their lives. The Gospel is something so incredible, and the best is that it lasts forever.

Well the truth is im actually getting changed. I got called last night so I'm not going to be in Rodriguez anymore and on Wednesday I will be going to the offices to see what happens. Who  knows wha's going to happen but we will see, I'm super excited though and ready for whatever may come! Gotta love changes, the best!

Well I hope you all are great and know how much I love and appreciate everyone of you, thanks for being such a special part of my life!

All the best,
Elder Hansen.

July 6, 2015

Hey everyone!

So this week has been incredible but crazy! Life is great and always busy with things to do!

So this weekend I have my convert meeting (a meeting were we get to see all our converts one last time before we leave) so I have to call them today and let them know.. so I really don't have much time..

But we have had another fantastic week here in General Rodriguez and the work continues to go amazing. We have been so blessed by the Lord, and we have seen some big steps in our investigators and in their progress. This week I really was trying to focus on planning well and learning how to be better prepared.. it has helped us a ton. Elder Schoonover is learning a ton and continues to contribute more and more. It has been amazing to see and to be apart of his growth.

So this week President Robertson`s son Dallas is going to come out with us and work for the week! It is going to be so awesome, I am beyond excited. What a great experience it is going to be for all of us. It is going to be such a cool experience for all of us and I can't wait!

Andrea, Oscar and Maria continue to do great and are progressing super well! We are so excited for them. They are preparing well for their marriage (Oscar and Andrea) and then for their baptisms. On Sunday after church they stayed for a ward baptism and they loved it! Was a super special experience for them and they feel even more desirious to be baptized now. It has been so awesome to see them grow and change in these past weeks. They are doing fantastic for this month. For this month we are also working for Eduardo and Diana, they are a married couple that when to church 2 weeks ago. They are doing great as well. We are working a lot with them to help them strengthen their testimonies... They have been better in far as reading and praying but we are still focusing on that a lot. 

Well I don't have much more time but I love you all so much! Thanks for being so supportive and understand! Know that I love and pray for you all.. hope you all have a great week!

Elder Hansen.

June 29, 2015

Our zone going to the temple 

Lovin the life out in campo

Dear Family and Friends!

What a fantastic week it has been here in Rodriguez. We have been super blessed by the Lord it has been so incredible. I have loved the little miracles that He has blessed us with, it has been truly amazing to see.

Elder Schoonover continues to grow and do great. His Spanish is getting really well and is he is learning to take on a bigger role in teaching and contacting. I am always amazed by the faith of these young missionaries. We get along super well and working together is a blast. Sometimes the language barrier can be the funniest thing. So yesterday we had a big lunch with our branch president and his family.. and right after we went to do some follow up with a family we had contacted last week. So we clapped and they let us right in.. and when we went in we saw that they were just finishing eating. As we sat down they asked my companion "usted sabe que es pollo y asado" (do you know what chicken and bbq is) and before he could say yes they asked "ustedes quieren?" (do you want some) and with all this confusion he just said "yes" and so they brought out plates and we had to eat again.. we literally almost died haha it was hilarious.
So this week was incredibly rainy (well the weekend) and pretty much the whole city got flooded and the power kept going in and out.. classic Argentine winter I love it! It was definitely a wild time in our bikes, we got super soaked and muddy out in campo but it all makes for the great mission experience!

So like i said this week was fantastic and our investigators continue to do great. This week Oscar and Andrea (who get married on the 17th) and then Maria (Andrea`s mom) are going to have their baptismal interviews! We are more then excited for them, they are so prepared and incredibly excited. It has been so awesome to see their testimonies grow. Oscar was very doubtful about the whole thing 3 weeks ago, but now he has a solid testimony. The other day his daughter was at his house (she lives in a different part of town) and we ended up teaching her for the first time. Oscar was sharing his testimony about how this is God's true church and how much it has helped him, he also told us that he is going to make his daughter come to church with him someday! haha. It was super cool. So they came to church on Sunday even though it was raining like crazy, that was a miracle in itself.
We also have another awesome married family.. the family Villagra. Eduaro and Diana were taught over 2 years ago by missionaries and decided to get married, but they never were baptized. We just started teaching them and things have been slowly progressing. We have been focusing a ton on the temple and on family (they have 3 young kids) and it has been going great! They also came to church yesterday for the first time with us, which was absolutely incredible! We were seriously so happy for them.. more then words can explain. They have baptismal dates for the 25th of July so we are working with them like crazy as well!
We have one or two other possibilities for July as well. One is Florencia, the niece of Oscar and Andrea. She is still undecided about her baptism but she loves church a lot. Besides that we are already starting to focus on August and trying to prepare people for then.

Last night we did meet a really awesome guy though, he has been less active for quite a few years. His older daughter is a member and his younger daughter isn't, he has the desire to return to church but it's quite hard for him. We are going to start working with him a lot... and to do so we invited him to join us in an appointment on Tuesday. We think that a great way for him to learn will be to listen to the discussions again, and then to bare testimony when we give him the opportunity.. so we are super excited about that.

Elder Hansen

Sunday, June 28, 2015

June 23, 2015

Elder Schoonover and I

Our Zone in General Rodriguez

Hey fam!

Happy Father's day again dad! Hope you had a good weekend, I'm sure you got spoiled as usual!

How are you all doing!? Hope life is good up there in the great white north. Things are getting pretty chilly here, sure nothing compared to Canada but I've become a wimp. After those Argentine summers I can't handle the cold haha. It is definitely worse on a bike, but I just bundle right up and life is good! We have had a great last week here.. lots of good stuff has happened!

So like I sad yesterday we went to the temple as a mission! So incredible. Then we went to the office and had a "family home evening" all together. It was awesome... such a special day. They had some missionaries share their conversion stories, they were pretty amazing. I am always so amazed by the faith and the courage of people who go out on a ledge for the gospel.. I feel like I always had it so easy. We then played some games, it was a blast.

As far as our area is going, things continue to go well and we are continuing to work and pray for miracles. We have been finding a lot of new investigators, just have been having some trouble in helping some of them progress. It really was hard for us the first 2 weeks to work with members for a lack of knowledge as far as their schedules, locations and capabilities.. but we have been trying to really involve them more. We know it is going to make all the difference. We do have some great news though, Oscar and Andrea set a marriage date last Monday! They will be getting married on the 17th of July and then baptized on the 18th! They will also be getting baptized with Maria (Andrea`s mom) and then we are working on 2 of their nieces and nephews right now who live right next to Andrea and Oscar. We had a big noche de hogar with them on Saturday, and we were about 11 people in total, and they all went to church on Sunday after so that was pretty special! It is awesome to see the power of families and how important they are, and how they are all coming to church together. The ward is super excited, and so are we. We are gonna plan a reception for the weekend that they get married! The other day we had an incredible lesson about the temple and the importance it has, and we really tried to help them see that the temple is the final goal.. not baptism. So we are excited about that. 

We are working with an awesome less active family as well, the Merlees family. They also went to church for the first time in over 6 months. They are a family with a ton of potential. They went to church for 11 years in Paraguay, then when they moved here like 4 years ago they kinda lost the desire to go. We have been working with them and they have responded really well, they have super strong testimonies just have fallen out of the habit.

Besides that just working a full and trying to do all we can to hasten the Lord's work. It's amazing to see His hand in everything. We have been studying about faith a lot in the mission and it has been pretty powerful. Just to see how much the faith of one can do, and how our faith has to be based in Christ. I hope we can continue to grow in our faith everyday.. and as we do so we will see so many miracles! Take care!

With lots of love, Elder Hansen.

June 15, 2015

Hola Hola!

What a great week it has been here in General Rodriguez. We continue to be so blessed by the Lord, I really do marvel at the blessings he gives us. I have felt very privileged to work this week, we started with a fantastic Zone Meeting last week. We have awesome leaders here in Lujan.  I have also felt blessed to continue to watch Elder Schoonover grow. He is a great kid and such a hard worker. He is very humble and willing to listen which I love, he has a desire to apply all that he can. His Spanish has gotten so much better as well... i feel so jealous haha my Spanish took like 4 months to get better! He's a natural.

So the other night we had a pretty crazy little encounter with our bikes and a car and almost got robbed haha. But the Lord definitely protected us and we got out with any problems, just a bit of a destroyed bike. But we are all good so don't worry :) 

As far as our area things have been going good. We have a couple of really great people prepared right now. We have a couple (Andrea y Oscar) that is going to be married and baptized in July, they are really solid and are going to church every week. The other night we had a really special lesson about the temple and they have such strong desires to go one day. They are super special. One of our challenges is that the mom of Andrea has a baptismal date for the 27th of this month, but she expressed a desire to get baptized with her daughter. We have been praying a ton about what to do, we are trying to looking for the Lords will. We aren't sure yet what is going to happen but we know it will be great either way, we are super excited for this family they have SOO much potential.

 We also had another couple go to church yesterday, they are awesome but also need to get married. We haven't talked about that yet, but it's the next lesson plan that we have. They are a young couple and they have a lot of desires to follow Christ more in their lives. It is cool to see people and how they do whatever it takes to find the peace that comes through finding the Lord.

This week I was reading about the 2000 stripling warriors. And knowing that Father's day is coming up it made me think a lot about why the stripling warriors were as successful and faithful as they were. I love in Alma 53:20-21 because it explains their attributes.. and then its say that they were taught all these things. And if you read in Alma 27:27 it takes about their fathers (the Anti-Nephi-Lehi´s) and how they had many of these same attributes. I know that the stripling warriors were faithful because of their parents. I know that I don't come anywhere close to them, but I want you to know mom and dad that I am so grateful for what you have taught me. More with just your words, but for your examples. That you were always faithful, honest, and righteous. I couldn't have asked for anything greater. So dad I hope you have a great Fathers day, and I hope you both know how much I love you! 

Have a great week,
Elder Hansen.