Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Prayer is the Answer

Mom and Dad and Friends and Family,

I hope that amidst all of your business and things to do, you were able to enjoy your week this week. Thank you for getting a blog started. It looks really cool. It's Minatilán, but don't worry, the names here are difficult.  Here on the computers, the spell check is in Spanish.  (BTW it is a lot easier to write in Spanish. The words are written exactly how they sound). I will try to send home an interesting picture every week. Sometimes I forget to take pictures because we are so focused on working here.

Thanks for the money. I don't need it yet, but when I do, thank you so much. The blog is awesome. Thank you for doing that. As for recordings, yes my recorder broke, but I have a program that converts video to audio. I can take a video with my camera, then convert it to an audio and send that:)

That is awesome to hear about all that is going on back there at home. Dad in Argentina...that is sweet. Dad, you gotta keep up on your Spanish so that we can talk at Christmas. What is Argentina like?

Jenna, you are so beautiful and your voice is amazing!!! I miss you! How did that activity go? You guys sound really good. What is the situation with Sam and you? You went to Mesa High's homecoming too!!! You are becoming super popular!

So...this week was super eventful. We worked super hard and had a lot of success in finding this week. Thanks to prayers being answered we found some really awesome investigators this week.

On Wednesday, we headed out to visit an investigator with plans to set a baptismal date. We were super excited and felt like we were going to have an awesome lesson. When we got there...he wasn't home. His family told us that he left to Ciuadad de Carmen and won't be coming back for at least a month. That made us super sad...and I was a little angry. We then passed at the house of our backup plan, and they weren't there either. So...we said a prayer asking the Lord to lead us to someone that He has made ready to hear the gospel. After the prayer, I remembered a reference that we got from another investigator about a month ago. Her name was Mariana. We had passed by her house several times before, but she was never home, or didn't have time to talk to us. We got to her house, and she was standing by the door. When we showed up, and greeted her with our usual ''Hola Hermana, buenas días!'', she looked at us and told us that she had been waiting for us for the past 30 min. This is a reference that we hadn't talked to in over a month! She invited us in, we had a wonderful lesson, and we set a baptismal date with her. She committed to prepare herself by reading the scriptures, praying and coming to church. On Friday, we visited her again, and read from the  Book of Mormon with her. After reading and discussing, she prayed and received her answer that the Book of Mormon is true. We invited her to church again and asked if a sister in the ward could come pick her up. She told us no...but that she would come on her own. Usually when people tell us that, they don't show we left a little sad.

Yesterday, she showed up to church 20 min. early, on her own, and stayed for all 3 hours. It was awesome. She is very interested and wants a change in her life. She is a single mom with a little boy that is 4 years old. Allen...he is so funny. Anyways, she is preparing for baptism on the 10th of October.

So...remember William? He opened his mission call last week. He has been praying for his family for a whole year (he is the only member). His family came to church with him for the first time last week. On Wednesday night, we went to teach his whole family. It was an awesome lesson, and we taught to like 8 people. The Spirit was so strong, that his aunt, cousin, sister and mom were all crying. Then he bore his testimony to his family. After that we almost flooded the house because we were all crying;)  It was an awesome lesson, and afterwards we ate empanadas!!!!  Elder Reyes and I are planning on having William baptize his family before he goes on his mission. That gives us and the Spirit until the 24th to convert his family:)  His sister and his cousin came to church yesterday!!!

On Tuesday, we went to visit a contact that we made the week before. Her name is Maria. When we contacted her, she shared with us that she really needed to hear a message about Jesus Christ, because she has some problems with her daughter, so we set an appointment with her. When we got to her house, she told us that she was super busy and that we couldn't visit her. We asked her when we could come back, and she told us that she is always busy, and that she will never have time (really, she just didn't want us to visit her). I then said a prayer in my heart for guidance in how we could get the door open, so that she could recieve the blessings that God has for her.  In that moment the Spirit spoke to me. I asked her if she had ever seen this book (I showed her a Book of Mormon). She told me no, and asked what it was. I explained what it is, and shared with her that in this book, we can find answers to questions of our souls. I then showed her the list of questions that we glue in the back of the Book of Mormon (Questions of the soul in PMG. Attached is a photo of what we made) and asked her to choose one that she wanted to know the answer to. After she chose one, I asked if we could read with her to find the answer. She told us to come back in 5 hours when her husband got home.

                        Questions we asked her in can find the exact
                         questions in the English version of Preach My Gospel

We went back at the time she told us to, she welcomed us in, we met her husband, then they took us to meet Alondra, their daughter. Their daughter is sick. She has some mental illness that I can't remember what it is called. She is seven and she can't do anything for herself. It is really hard on the mom, because she has to take care of her 24/7. We shared a short message with them about the Book of Mormon and read in it. She started crying telling us that she has been waiting and praying for help from God, and that we were her answer. We have another lesson with her this week.

This week a lot of prayers were answered. I know that prayer is the way we communicate with God. Sometimes it feels like we are talking to no one, or we get frustrated when God doesn't instantly answer our prayers, but we need to be patient.

This week I studied a talk by Neal A. Maxwell entitled Patience.  It is amazing.  It relates patience to every different aspect of our lives.  If we are patient, we are humble, loving, respect agency, have faith in God, enjoy our lives.  It is amazing and I encourage you to read it.  It can be found online in  I was also studying in the book of Luke chapter 8. The parable of the seeds. In this parable Jesus talks about four different types of earth where seeds fell and started to grow.  The seeds represent the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and the different places represent different types of hearts the receive the Gospel.  I encourage all of you to study this parable and take a self evaluation. What kind of earth am I for the seed? How can I improve my heart to be good soil for the Gospel to grow?  Strive everyday to have your testimony strengthened and become representatives of Jesus Christ.

Elder Reyes and I are having a great time, and we have set about 10 baptismal dates for October. We will see how many actually make it, but we are going to do everything we can to baptize a ton this next month.

I am so excited for conference this week!!! I am more excited that our investigators have the chance to listen to prophets and apostles called of God!!!  It is going to be an amazing weekend.

                               This is a picture of me eating octopus.  It is good!

Gracias para todo que hacen para mi. Puedo sentir su amor y ayuda que siempre me han dado. Estoy muy feliz y animado para ser un representante de Jesucristo. Se que con fe en nuestro Padre Celestial, podemos hacer cualquier cosa que Él nos pida. Se que la Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Últimos Días es la única iglesia verdadera, y fue restaurado por medio de un profeta llamado por Dios. Él nos ama, y quiere que cada uno de nosotros podemos regresar a su presencia.

(Here is the translation from Mary in Google translate:  Thanks for all you do for me. I can feel your love and support you have always given me. I am very happy and encouraged to be a representative of Jesus Christ. I know that with faith in our Heavenly Father , we can do anything He asks us . I know that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church, and was restored by a prophet called by God. He loves us , and wants each of us can return to his presence .)

This is a picture of our ward family after the Temple Dedication.

I Love you all and wish you the best week!!!

Elder Cavenee 

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

The Spirit Speaks

Dear Mom and Dad and Friends and Family,
 This week was amazing, starting last Sunday!!!!   The Mexico City Temple was rededicated.  We traveled to Villahermosa to take part in the rededication.  We got to go to two sessions of the dedication.  It was amazing! Elder Holland gave an amazing talk on the Prophecy of Elijah...a prophecy that was fulfilled in the Kirtland Temple with Joseph Smith.  He said that there are millions of people in the world waiting for that prophecy to be fulfilled, and it is our responsibilty to let people know.  He also gave another talk on dedication, and rededication.  He shared stories of the early pioneers and the dedication that they had in their lives.  Now is a time for rededicating our lives to the service of the Lord.  I took this talk and applied it to my life.  This week I rededicated myself as a missionary and representative of Jesus Christ, to really give Him my all.  Be 100% focused on what He expects of me and to always trust in Him.  At the end of his talk, he bore his testimony in Spanish.  He only knows a little bit, but it was so powerful.  He was crying as he said ''Yo se que esto es la iglesia verdadera. Yo se que Jesucristo vive.'' (I know that this church is true.  I know that Jesus Christ lives.)  It was amazing.

On Monday we had transfers.  Elder Jenkins left and Elder Reyes came.  He is super awesome.  We are working super well togather, and we are already best friends!!!  Heand I are finding success here, and are working hard:)

Wednesday was a real blessing.  We went to visit with Eusebio.  We taught him a lesson so that he could know if the Book of Mormon is true or not.  We focused on the question ''What does Jesus Christ expect of me?''  In 2 Nephi chapter 9, you can find the answer to this question.  (Repent, be baptized, endure to the end.) We read it together and talked with him about what Jesus Christ expects of him, and how he could complete what the Jesus Christ expects of him.  We then knelt down with him, so that he could directly ask Heavenly Father ''Is the Book of Mormon true?''.  We knelt down...he asked, and we stayed on our knees for about ten minutes.  He then looked at us and told us that he knows that it is true.  And because it is true, he knows what he needs to do for Jesus Christ.  We were super excited!!  The Spirit spoke to him and he was ready for baptism, we just needed to teach him the rest of the lessons in 2 days.  We set up a appointment with him for the next night.

On Thursday, we showed up at his house, and he wasn't there.  We called him and he didn't answer.  His mom was home and she told us that he didn't want to get baptized or keep meeting with us.  We were super bummed, but we didn't let that get in the way.  We went home and prayed for him.  Prayed that some way we could get in touch with him.  We prayed that he could be guided by the Spirit.  On Friday morning we got a call from his brother Jorge who told us that he and Eusebio would be home in the afternoon if we wanted to come over. (The miricle here is, Jorge didn't know about what had happened with Eusebio, and he isn't really interested in the church.)  We showed up at 4:00, and Jorge wasn't home, but Eusebio was.  He invited us in and we started to talk about his family and his work. I was trying to find a video that we were going to use to teach him, but I couldn't find it.  I decided to use another video, but when I played it, it wasn't the video I wanted!!  My companion looked at me with a face of ''Why did you pick this video?!''  I was super stressed out. I had no idea of how we could relate this video to help him with his needs.  The video ended, and my companion asked him what he thought about the video.  Then I just started talking.  The words just came.  Then we prayed with him on our knees again to know if this is what he needed to do. (He didn't want to get baptized.)

We prayed with him, and we were on our knees again for like 10 minutes.  He then told us that he felt nothing. He knew what the Spirit felt like, and how prayers are answered, and he felt nothing.  He told us that he would let us know when he recieved his answer.  We convinced him to come to the ward actvity with us.  There he had a lot of fun, and got to know a lot of members.  After the ward party, we took him into a room and asked him what he felt.  We seriously sat in silence for 30 minutes while he just pondered and thought.  He then looked at us and told us ''I got my answer. I need to get baptized tomorrow.''  We were so happy!!!!  We asked him what happened.  Miracle: he told us that he had been thinking about the video that we shared. (The video that I didn't mean to share/that we didn't want to share.)  He told us that he needs to prepare his garden for the coming of it's Master. Here is the link to the video.

The Spirit guided us in that lesson.  When we were lost, he took over and converted Eusebio. Moses 6:32;
D&C 24:6.

On Saturday we baptized him.  After he came out of the water, he gave me the biggest hug I have ever had in the mission.  I asked him what he was feeling, and he told me that he felt new...clean...ready to change:)  On Sunday he was confirmed in church, and the blessing that was given to him was all about misisonary work within his family and his potential as a leader.  It was super special.  Afterwards, I asked him how he was feeling.  He asked me how many people were standing around him when he was confirmed.  I told him that only Reyes.  He told me that he felt someone else at his shoulder.  He is an amazing guy, and he is going to be a great leader one day.

I testify that the Spirit is there to help every single one of us.  We always need to apply the atonement in our lives every day so that we can be worthy of him as a companion.  Every night...kneel down and ask for forgiveness of your weaknesses, and ask for His strength.  When we do this, He helps helps us to be strong. Ether 12:27.

On Sunday after church William opened his misison call. (He just completed a year as a member.)  He is going to Mexico City east mission and he leaves on October 28!!!  He is so excited!!!

This week in Preach my Gospel I have been studying the lessons again, focusing on Lesson 1...the Restoration. I am trying to change the way I teach, in order to invite the Spirit more.  I am focusing on using different methods depending on the needs and personalities of our investigators.  In the Book of Mormon, I studied Alma 26.  It is an amazing chapter about missionary work.  I Love verse 27 that talks about patiently suffering. We when do this, God will give us success.  Also verse 22 talks about if we have faith, and repent, we can come to know the mysteries of God.  He will reveal to us things that have never been revealed before. With this revelation, we will bring thousands to repentance:)

I Love this work, and I know that it all is true.

I Love you all so much!!!!!!


Elder Cavenee