Thursday, 3 December 2015

Better than money!!

December 1, 2015 

Hey guys!!! 

What's up?! This week has been pretty fun! It really flew by!!!

Well, the biggest news is that Elder Cox left and I will be training! My new companion's name is Elder Magby but I have not met him yet! It will be pretty fun! I really wanted a Latino companion to be able to learn spanish better, but I guess deep down I also really did want someone from North America because I  seem to connect a lot better with them! So, I am pretty excited! For today I am hanging out in San Nicolas with Elder Neilson! He is pretty cool! We get along super well so it makes things everything super fun! We are going to go to the mission home tomorrow to pick up our new comps because he is training as well! It will be fun! Its always pretty funny to watch them struggle so much with the language right when they get there! Haha-we all go through it! Its fun to be with them as they experience the culture and everything for the first time! Haha-so all in all, I am pretty excited! But I was also sad to say good bye to Elder Cox! He is a funny kid and I enjoyed our time together!! I learned a lot from him and he was an awesome example to me!

Well, we are working with that couple who needs to get married and who just brought rings but do not have enough money to throw a big party or anything! They are super awesome!! They were a miracle to find and are progressing a ton!! This Sunday they came to the church alone! I was pretty pumped!!!! Nobody does that! We would go walk with them but they live like an hour away from everything, so it's kind of hard!!! Anyways, they showed up a little late but they came all dressed up and everything! You know they are serious about the church when they put a skirt and a shirt and tie on!  I am not going to lie - some of the members don't even do that here! We often have many members attend in just the jeans and a shirt! This is just a different a culture!! But, they showed up and man, I was pretty flipping excited to see them! They stood at the door and I was very surprised!! Man, I was as happy as as if I had won 1000 bucks!! Haha - but worth more in a way!! Anyways, it made up for the super disappointing Sunday we had last week when nobody came! The members were super good with them and all said hi. Then the bishop met with them and it was sweet! I love those guys! I cannot wait go back and visit them! They have become my friends! It makes everything worth it when you find people like that! Elder Cox was sad to say goodbye to them because we found them together!!

This week our zone went to the mission house to do p-day together! It was pretty fun! We had to go sleep over at Elder Nielson's pension the night before because we have a long bus ride to get to San Nicolas and had to leave early in the morning! Haha- turns out that they didn't have any extra mattresses so we put the two that they had and laid them out horizontally and laid 4 by 4. Man,that was the worst night of my life! There was absolutely noooo roooom! Nothing!! I was dying!! Once you finally fell asleep someone moved and would wake someone up and then not be able to fall asleep again! Haha - it was not fun! Then we woke up early to go to Rosario as a zone! We took a bus and went up there together! it was pretty fun! we got there and they had planned out a bunch of games and stuff for us to do! some were fun, some were not! There will probably be pics on the mission blog,mom!! Anyways,it was fun! We ate some good food and was a good opportunity to relax a little bit!! 

To finish up the pday we watched Efraim Rescue! Man, I have seen it before but this time it really hit home! Those people are freaking awesome! I want to study about their adventures and stuff when I get home! The movie is really good at showing what these poeple went through. They went through some crazy stuff!! These people literally gave up everything they had! EVERYTHING!!! They gave up money, their belongings and they sacraficed their bodies and I am sure many of them were depressed! It really hit home for me. The times I want to complain or think something is hard, I think of them and then I feel like a little girl in comparison. They were dying. They had nothing left, which was crazy. The movie really shows that the greatest blessings that we recieve are spiritual blessings. These people weren't rewarded by money or health or wordly things but God let them see miracles which brang them closer to Him and strenghten their testimony which is a much greater blessing than anything else we can ask for. They saw tons of miracles because they sacraficed everything. That is one thing that got me. In the mission, you always want to see amazing miracles and stuff, but they don't happen until you are willing to sacrifice something. If you give up everything you have for God, you are going to see miracles and blessings !!

Anyways, this week has been good! I am working hard and having fun!

Love you
Elder Carter
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Rain and Blessings

November 23, 2016 

Hey guys! This week has been good! Just doing the normal missionary work!!

Man, its getting hot here! Haha - luckily we have air conditioning in our pension so it's not that bad!! Haha,but when we go outside, we just start sweating! The worst is walking back from lunch at like 1:30 in the afternoon with a super full stomach and you have to walk 30 mins back to the pension in the boiling hot sun! That kills me!! It's like 30 plus degrees everyday and with the humidity here it feels soooo hot!! Haha! The humidity is the worst part because it just never goes away! Plus,  it makes you all sticky as well!! The hot weather also means spring time and the spring alergies are getting to me! It's bad! The other day I was dying with the spring allergies!! Haha- I wanted to rip my eyes out and my nose was running like a water fountain! It seems to be a common problem with lots of other missionaries!! But luckily I called the doctor and I got some pills  and they have really been helping!! I am glad they are gone now!!  

With all the hot weather that we have been having I have been taking more showers, usually 2 a day. After working hard all day and coming back just sticky and gross it feels pretty dang good to be able to get out of the shower clean and refeshed!! I was thinking that is how the sacrament works. We go through our week making tons of mistakes and the way to cleanse them is through the sacrament! Saturday comes around and we are all dirty and gross! The sacrament gives us an opportunity to be refreshed and feel awesome! I think I need to work on improving my attitude because sometimes I don't always have that feeling..mostly, its just the "I'm hungry" feeling! haha 

On Thursday we have weekly planning where we pretty much plan everything we are going to teach all of the people we are working with. It usually goes for about 3 hours and at times gets pretty boring and dry. Anyways, we finished up right before lunch Thursday morning. We looked outside and it looking like it was going to rain pretty good. SO we quickly got our stuff ready to go for lunch. Well before we were able to get out the rain started coming down. Then rain was really coming down! It is probably one of the hardest rainfalls that I have ever seen! There was just tons of wind and the rain was just coming down!!! So we decided to wait it out for a little bit longer to see if it would pass. Since we had to walk to lunch, about a 10 min walk, we didn't want to get wet. Haha! Well, after like 10 mins of waiting it was just getting worse. The rain was coming down harder and harder!! We just decided to go for it! I put on a the rain gear I had but it wasn't worth it. I got soaked EVERYWHERE. It didn't matter that I had rain stuff on! I tried to keep my feet dry for the first 30 seconds but when we came to the street, where it was practically a river, I really had no choice but to walk through it! The wind was coming at us so hard! It was crazy!!! When we finally got to the house of the members we were just soaked! Haha - there was literally not a part of my body dry! It was all just wet! We took off what we could to eat, but i was pretty uncomfortable! The worst part was that the dye from my socks was running, forming a nice blue puddle underneath me. I hope it didn't stain the flour! But,we ate some good meat so it made up for it! We got back and dried our stuff up to just go out that same night and get it all wet again! Haha- it was a good experience! When it rains here, it rains hard!!!

I have noticed that lots of people who have chosen to be inactive feel that despite their not going to church, God continues to bless them. They mention that they continue to be good people and that the Lord has not forgotten them. I was really thinking about that the other day. Does God bless and reward people who aren't following his counsel or living His commandments? It  is true that you can choose not to read scriptures daily and still get good grades, a great job, and do awesome in life. After thinking it through, I realized that while a person may enjoy these blessings, they would still be missing out on the most important blessings- the ones that help us become closer to our Heavenly Father. These are the blessings that really matter. It's not so much about the money or the work, it's about the spiritual knowledge and experience we can get that will help us grow closer to our Father in Heaven. It was  kind of cool for me to think about this because I have always wondered why people who aren't doing good things are still living fun and happy lives? Well, in reality the biggest blessing that God can ever give us is that of eternal life. And we have to work for that, it will not just be given us. Even though right now it is not a blessing we can see or touch, it will be better than anything we can imagine!!!

This week has been good! The normal good stuff! Transfers are next week so I will be writing on Tuesday! But things are good here! I am learning how to cook a few more things and exercising more!! Haha!! Life is good!

Love you guys!!

Elder Carter
 
 

 
 
 
 
 

 
 
 
 

Bones and Eggs

November 9, 2015

Hey guys!
This week has been pretty good! We have been working hard! We also had interviews with president this week and that was good! He is an awesome guy!!
Lately my companion and I have been going for early morning runs. We decided to do it because for one,  it helps me to actually do my exercises  instead of sitting on my chair and doing a couple of tricep dips. And TWO because we are trying to work off all the bread and oil we always eat!! haha!! But I was thinking about running this week. I ALWAYS dislike getting up in the morning and knowing that we are going to have to go running. Then while I am running I enjoy it but at the same time I don't enjoy it because it hurts. THEN after I am done the run, it feels amazing! The whole day I am able to look back and feel good because I was able to do something hard and finish! haha! I think its the same with a lot of things in life. We don't like it before we get started, we don't like it that while we are doing but once we are done we really realize how much it helped us and the things we learned from it!
Here in this little branch we usually eat with the same members every week because there aren't that many members to begin with. Anyways, sometimes they aren't able to give us lunch so we have to make lunch. And I don't know how to make anything!! haha! I am getting sick of hot dogs and hamburgers!! haha lolz!! Argentina also has a food sometimes called "milanesas" which are just like big chicken nuggets. We eat alot of those. I also know how to make raviolis. So all in all i am getting a little sick of eating that! I wish I had learned to cook a little bit more before the mission! Haha! I will need to find a wife who can cook really good because I don't want to cook anything!! haha
This week I had the opportunity to study the vision of the tree of life. I really enjoyed studying it and reading about it. I learned a ton!! I loved seeing what everything meant. I always knew the tree of life was a representation of the love that God has for us. With the seminary guide I was able to learn something really cool! Turns out that the tree of life is a direct representation of Jesus Christ and his atonement. The tree represents the love God has for us and the biggest act of love that God has shown and given us is Jesus Christ and his atonement. Learning this made sense to me! That's why the fruit is the most deisirable above all! Its because those who eat the fruit and experience the atonement in their life recieve the best and most rewarding gift that God has to give us. We are able to be clean and have eternal life. There will be some who eat the fruit and go away, there will be some who just don't want to even try the fruit, BUT those who partake and share the amazing blessings that everyone is eligible to obtain, ARE the ones who are truly happy. They are able to stand before God and tell him that they are clean. And He will tell them that they have a spot in  the mansions of God! How great would that be?For me, this information really put things into a better perspective because I had never thought of the tree of life in that way!! How cool!!
So, a couple nights ago we went and visited some less active members! Anyways the father hasn't been feeling that well. He said he had been having some problems in his bones! So he asked for a blessing. We happily said yes. Well Elder Cox, being pretty young in the mission is still learning the language! He speaks really good, but he is still learning. Anyways in spanish the word HUESOS which means bones sounds pretty similiar to the word HUEVOS which means eggs. So, I bet you can guess what happened!! Haha!!! Elder Cox gave a wonderful blessing but everytime he ment to say "huesos" he said "huevos"!!!! Haha!! Man, I was trying sooo hard not to laugh!! It was classic!! The hermano played it off cool and I told Elder Cox what he said after we left and he was like what the heck?! Then the hermano came to church and was giving him a hard time! it was prettty funny! The best part was he was saying things like, we bless you so that your "huevos" recover so that you help your family, etc... haha it was funny!!
This week we have been woking really hard to really give God all that we have! This week we saw a miracle and were able to find a woman who is very prepared for us to teach! We found her through a less active who is her husband (boyfriend, they aren't married yet). Her name is Daniela and she had talked to the missionaries a ton in Buenos Aires where she grew up. She had gone to church a ton of times! She wants to be sealed with here family for time and all eternity has a testimony of everything! The only reason she didn't get baptized was because she wasn't married! Well, we found them and they had just recently bought rings to get married! They don't have anything planned yet, but I think if they have rings they have to be pretty close to going and filling out some papers! We are super excited! On top of it all, they are super cool!! He is 23 and she is 20 and they have a little boy! They live in a little house out out in the country, but its really nice!! It was sweet! What a blessing!!
Anyways, things week have been good! I was also thinking alot about the scripture in D and C 30:2 where the Lord is telling us to not think so much about wordly things. I have a problem with that, so it's something I am working on!!
I love you guys!!
Elder Carter

 










Thursday, 5 November 2015

A reflective week

November 2, 2015

Hey, whats up!

Happy Halloween!! Halloween here pretty much does not exist! Haha. The most I saw here were a couple kids dressed in robes trying to scare people - accompanied by some gun shots! haha ! People here really don't celebrate it! I have to admit, I did think a little about home and all the cool stuff that goes on around this time!
It poured this week, especially on Wednesday and Thursday! As a matter of fact, we left for lunch on Thursday and 5 minutes into our walk, we were completely soaked!!! Haha! It is pointless to even use an umbrella or a rain coat because EVERYTHING gets soaked- there is no escaping it! Haha!! It makes it a little bit harder to work, but that's alright, we worked anyway!
Man, it is hard not to get fat here! I am surprised I haven't gained more weight. I am going to let you in on what the normal argentine eating habits are;

For breakfast:They have a drink call "mate" which consists of tons of sugar and water. They usually eat that with some "facturas" or some type of bread. Just that, nothing else. And that's IF they eat breakfast. 
For lunch: EVERYTHING is fried. Its either something fried or a pasta of some sort! You also eat a lot of meat. AND there is always bread -always always. The bread is way good! It's hard not to eat it. 
Snack:They drink more mate with cookies. And sometimes bread too.
Dinner: They don't eat dinner until 9 or 10 at night. And it also consists of pasta or something fried with bread. 

So all in all, people aren't too concerned with lean eating here. Back home, it's not uncommon to see really fit people with lean muscle walking down the streets, but that is very rare to see here. I have to admit that the food is really yummy though, and I sure do like it!!! 

My new area, Ramallo is a lot more widespread than in the city, where I was last serving. We are visiting some people who live out on farms. The problem is that they always have freaking crazy dogs! They are massive dogs that are pretty much trained to attack whenever someone enters the property! And you guys know how I feel about dogs (except for very few).  So, I am not a huge fan of all the dogs we have to pass through before we get in the door. I have had to pick up a few rocks and throw them at the dogs to get them to leave!! Haha!!
We walk on lots of dirt roads and open country here. It reminds me lots about camping. This week, as I was walking along, I remembered back to all the scout camps I went on. Man, I have some great memories from those! The summer camps are better memories than the winter camps! Even though sometimes it rained or we walked a lot, and even though some activities were not as fun as others, they all created great memories! I had so much fun on those things!! They were also great testimony builders. I am grateful to my YM leaders for taking the time to plan these and for all their efforts to get us out there and have fun! Good times! I wish I could go back and relive those moments!!
One day this week, we had a ton of appointments scheduled! It was crazy! We had scheduled 6 or 7 appointments in a row. I was pretty excited for the day. But as we went to visit them, nobody was there!!!! NOBODY!!!! I must admit that I was feeling pretty discouraged and beaten and everything in me wanted to come back to the pension early and close my eyes and go to sleep. We had been on our feet for at least 5 hours with nothing going right. No one was opening the doors or anything! But we kept on going! At around 8:45 pm, we went looking for an inactive me,ver and to our surprise, she answered the door and welcomed us into her humble home. We were able to have a great lesson with her! It was pretty awesome! It was a sweet miracle and honestly, a much needed one because I was physically and emotionally tired! 

As I was thinking about that experience more this week, I realized that EVERY time in my mission that I have seen some miracles, it has always come after a struggle! Even though we are out here doing what we are supposed to be doing, God isn't just going to give us everything we want, when we want it. We must work hard for it. I was reading in the beginning chapters of Nephi the account of  when they went to get the brass plates. They were doing what God had commanded them to do. They were trying their best and they were almost killed a couple of times in the process! Lemuel and Laman saw it as God not supporting them. But Nephi knew that they needed to do their part first, before the Lord did the rest! Sometimes God tells us to do something but He will not just give us what we are looking for at our feet. We must really work hard and try our best to do our part. Thats what I think is important. Its a lot easier said than done. People always talk about enduring to the end, giving it all they have, but when it really comes down to it, when its hard and you really really want to give up and go home what do you do? That is when you get the blessing of the Lord stepping in.

Anyways, I am doing good! Thanks a ton for all the support!  I am enjoying Ramallo and we are seeing the blessings of working hard an being obedient! We have been finding new people to teach and it is really exciting! The people we are finding are awesome! I am super excited!
I love you guys!
Elder Carter

Two missionaries to the rescue!

October 26, 2015
 
Hey guys!!
This week has been super good! It is different being here in Ramallo than in the city! There is not much movement here and it seems like not as much stuff is happening! Haha! It's alright! i really like it!
This week we have mainly been getting to know all the members and the "menos activos" and investigatores! It's been good! The members are a little different here and there aren't as many, but its alright! I am going to enjoy my time working here!! We have a number of ladies that we are teaching but all of them have the same problem. They are living with their boyfriends (with a number of kids) and the guy doesn't want to get married. We have about 4 or 5 ladies who are ready to be baptized but their boyfirend does not want anything to do with the church or getting married! It is so sad! We fasted with 2 of them this Sunday so that we could some how find a solution to that problem! I don't know what it is the deal here with people not getting married! Pretty weird!!
On Sunday there were about 45 people at church, which was good! Its a lot smaller than Rosario! But i like it! The president is a little different and I think that's why there are so few people going to church but we are trying to work and help him out! Elections were going on here on Sunday as well and we were not allowed to be out because it gets crazy here!! So,  it was a good opportunity to get to know Elder Cox a little better and also  to catch up on my studies, the journal and sleep! It was a good rest!! Elder Cox knows how to make some good mini donuts so we were busy eatng those all day! Haha!  I have always been blessed with companions who know how to cook. Thank goodness because I  know anything about cooking! I decided I am just not a cooker!! Haha!!
One morning this week we were walking and a moter cyle passed by us. A couple of seconds later we heard what sounded like a crash. We turned around and the woman on the motor cyle had totally wiped out and the motorcycle was laying on top of her! We quickly ran over and lifted the moter cyle off of her and made sure that she was okay. Lucky nothing was broken! Here in Argentina there are a ton of speed bumps! They are all over the place! The night before it had been a little rainy. Anyways, what happens here is that people on motorcycles don't want to go over the speed bump so they go to the side where the speed bump and the curb meet. There is about 1 foot of space, so the moter cyle can easly fit through and keep going with out having to slow down. Well what had happened was that she tried to do but because of mud from the rain the night before, her tire caught the mud and she wiped out. I was thinking alot about this incident. Speed bumps are built for our protection. Even though sometimes they are annoying and we don't want to use them, they are so that we, and the people around us can stay safe. They have been built by people who know what they are doing and have seen far too many accidents before. When we do not choose to use these speed bumps the way they are designed, people can get hurt!  It's the same with the commandments!!!! God had given us commandments and even though it seems like they get in the way or they just slow us down, they are really here to help us. If we choose to disobey and go around the commandments we might just find our selves in a muddy situation! Haha!  God knows alot more than us and we should use the things he has told us to use and do the things he has told us to do! That's what's cool!!
The pension here is super nice! It is probably one of the nicest ones in the mission! Its good and I am happy! Elder Cox is super cool! And he is a funny kid! A little clumsy but I love him!

I love you guys!!
Elder Carter

A transfer!

October 20,2015

Hey guys!! It's been a crazy week!!
To start off, last Monday we cut computer time short so that we could go golfing! Man, golfing was super fun!! It had been a super long time since I last went! The course was kind of crappy because it wasn't the golfing season and I played awful, but I loved it!! It was super fun!! haha! So, we went and the course was in this  gated off neighbourhood! We drove up in a little crappy looking taxi and entered this area where the houses were just massive and the cars were super nice!!!! It was crazy!! We got there and started golfing right away,which was sweet!! Nobody was playing and the guy was super nice that let us in! We had a ton of fun and it felt like I was just hanging out! It was pretty awesome!! We then finished up and went and got some chorizos in centro which are like sausages but in a sandwhich and man they are sooo goood!! Haha! It was a pretty awesome day! It was definitely a good way to spend my last p day in Rosario!!
We had a good week doing divisiones, visiting the members and everything!! We were starting to find new people to teach and new menos activos to work with! It was pretty sweet! I was pretty excited!!! So much potential right when I was leaving!! It's alright, though! The new companionship will do great!  We did a couple of service activities this week, which went super well! We cut down a tree and it was pretty fun! I will send pics next week, I  forgot my camera!
The big news this week is that I got transferred! I am now in a small little town outside of San Nicholas! It is called Villa Ramallo! It is about an hour away from San Nicolas and San Nicolas is about 1 hour and 30 mins from Rosario! My new companion is named Elder Cox. He is from Utah and just finished being trained! I am excited to work with him!
We found out about transfers Saturday night, so we were busy visiting and saying goodbye to everyone all day Sunday and Saturday! Man, I had some really tough goodbyes! The familia Castellano and Bozac were both super hard for me to leave! I had built such a special friendship with them!  They both felt like part of my family. The familia Castellano felt like my uncle and aunt and then the familia Bozac felt like other grandparents! It was pretty hard for me to say goodbye to them! They both cried! I wrote them notes and gave them a few gifts! I hope I can see them both one day! Mom, they are both going to add you on facebook so accept them and keep encouraging them for me!!
Sunday I was asked to give a talk, 20 mins before sacrament meeting. I was thinking tons of what I should talk about. Sunday was mothers day here in Argentina so I went with the theme! I talked about mom and the love that she has shown me and how its similar to the love of chirst! I think it went well because I looked out into the congregation and some sisters were crying. I think that means it was good!!
I left Rosario in the morning and I arrived in San Nicholas in the afternoon. I traveled alone which was pretty weird!  Haha! But, I made it safe and sound! Ramallo is very very different from Rosario. I was pretty sad to say goodbye to Las Delicias and I think I really took it for granted while I was there! The members there are amazing and do so much for the missionaries. It is much smaller here with about 40 people at church every Sunday. We share the branch with a pair of hermanas... It is a little tiny town that doesn't really have a downtown or a centro. It is very calm and quiet which is very different from Rosario where you hear gun shots every night and there is always tons of movement! It's alright though, it should be good and I am excited to work here! By the way, I have realized I am a city boy!
I really loved the people in Rosario and for real am going to miss them! The members really took great care of me - they fed me every day, helped me with my laundry, and were always ready and willing to help the missionaries out as best they could. They taught me a lot!  I know things will be different here, but I am looking forward to doing my best! I am excited and committed to working hard here!
I love you guys! Thanks for everything!
Elder Carter

Tuesday, 13 October 2015

I was humbled!

Hey guys!! How's it going!! 

Well this week has been pretty good! I am back working hard with my toe pretty much better , I hope!!!

I was thinking about the scripture that you told me you guys were thinking about (ponderizing) in Mosiah 4: 27. It's a pretty good scripture! I was reading it and studying it a little bit and I liked the footnote in D&C 10 :4. In this part, the Lord is not letting Joseph Smith translate the Book of Mormon because Joseph had given some of the pages  to Martin Harris and then Martin Harris lost them! So, Joseph had to repent for doing this before he was able to translate the plates again. Quite a bit of time passed between when he gave the plates to Martin Harris and when he was able to start translating again. When Joseph finally was able to translate again he was trying to translate very quickly to make up for the lost time. Then the Lord said to Joseph to take his time and to work well but cautioned him not go faster than he could. I thought that was pretty cool and it put the scripture into a little bit of a better perspective to me. We must do our best, but not take on more than we can handle!! Good choice on the scripture,dad!

The other elders in our ward are always late. One of the elders is from mexico and he is always late. ALWAYS, ALWAYS, ALWAYS. And you know how I am about being late. Anyways, it gets annoying when we have lunch together or have a lesson together because we can't start until they get there. So I went and talked to him to try and help him with this problem. He said he would do better and work on a plan to improve. I was pretty happy about that! Well, turns out that later the same night we had a lesson together with a "menos activo" (less active) that wanted all four of us to go for some reason. It was in the other elder's area area, so we headed over there. We arrived on time and were waiting outside for the other elders to arrive.  They didn't get there until about 20 minutes later!! I was ticked, especially because the elder I spoke to said they were going to try to do better. But,  I didn't say anything, trying not to ruin the lesson we were about to have. I know that going into a lesson with a spirit of contention is not good. But to be honest, as we were going in I was pretty mad!!  Then, to top it off, the "hermana menos activo" (the less active sister) who wanted us to go there wasnt even there!!! I was even more ticked off cause we were wasting time that we could have used working in our area!!! I was not very happy, but God knows me pretty well and what I need to learn. 

SO, get this- about after 10 mintues of waiting she walks in with 6 large pizzas for us to eat!!!!! I can't tell you how fast my atitude changed from being mad and upset to being grateful and humbled!! This family really does not have money. The mom is out of work and they have 3 kids. Their house isn't very nice and they live in a very dangerous part of our area because they can't afford anything better. Yet, they sacrificed their money that would have been very useful to them to try and help us out!! I was truly touched!! It made me think that I need to be more giving and also that I need lighten up a little bit. Everyone makes mistakes but we are all trying to go to the same place. God probably gets pretty frustrated at us sometimes too, but through Christ all is possible and we can become better. Everyone needs Christ and that makes us all equal! I felt bad about being so upset, but was truly humbled and grateful for the food and the kind act they did for us and for how this sister reminded me to lighten up!

The other day we were walking behind a little girl and her mom. Suddenly, the little girl just stopped in the middle of the side walk and started going to the bathroom!! Haha - I thought it was classic!! The mom's face was pretty funny! Haha!! It got me thinking about my parents and some of the things I have done to embarrass them!!

Anyways, thats all!! I love you guys!!

Elder Carter

Sunday, 11 October 2015

Great conference weekend!

Hey guys! What's up?
Wow!! This week has been crazy!!
Conference was freaking awesome!! It was so sweet! We watched it in english, so that made it even better! I think it is way better to hear their actual voices!! All the English speaking missionaries got to watch conference upstairs in the high council room, which was pretty fun! We went out for ice cream in between sessions on Saturday!
There were so many good talks!! I would probably say I have two that really stick out to me! One of them was by Elder Anderson. He related the story about the family who died and left 3 children and how the surviving kids chose to move forward in faith! It was crazy! I was really inspired!  The fact that one of the sons was out serving a mission when his parents died was pretty significant to me because I could put myself in his shoes. And I can't even imagine it! What amazing faith! It helped put a lot of things into perspective for me! 

The other talk that I loved was Elder Holland's talk about mothers and how the love of a mother is like that of Christ's! The whole time I was listening to it I was just thinking about my mother and what an excellent example of that she is. She has sacrificed so much for me!  I will never be able to repay. The talk just made me extra grateful for the mother I have. Elder Holland was saying that sometimes when it is hard to feel the love of Christ, it is truly displayed by a mother. It made me think a lot about whether or not the  decisions I have made, am making, and will someday make are going to make my mom proud of me. Thank you, mom! You are the best!!!!!
This week I had my operation on my toe! Everything went well and I have been resting for these last couple of days!! Actually, another elder in the zone got the same surgery so we hung out for a while,while our companions went out and worked! He is a pretty cool guy!! He actually is one of my good friends on the mission, so it was pretty fun!! But I think by Tuesday I will be back into the full swing of things! It will be nice to get back to good old missionary work!!
We don't have a ton of people to teach right now, so this week we have been focusing on a part of our area that is a little bit outside of Rosario! We have to take the "collectivo" to get there, but I think there is a lot of potenial there! I am looking forward to finding new people over there so that we can help them!!
It's crazy to think that I have been out over a year! I really have enjoyed my time and I feel as if it is going by way too fast! Looking back it has gone by faster than I can ever imagine!! I am really trying to enjoy every minute because I know it will be over before I know it!!

Thank you so much!
Love you guys!!
Elder Carter

Tuesday, 29 September 2015

My prayers are working!

Hey guys!! This week was good!!

I dont know if I already told you about a missionary serving with us in the ward by the name of Elder Curtis. Anyway, turns out he is really good friends with Triton and Steven. They met at BYU. I think Gavin and Joel know him as well.  What a small world!! I went on divisions with him this week and it was pretty fun!!

Well, it turns out that I did not go in for surgery this past week. Instead, I am scheduled to go in on Friday, which is perfect because it is General Conference weekend, so we wouldn't be out much, anyways. I am pretty excited for conference!! I was never excited before my mission, but I think I had  given it the importance that it deserves! But now I am pretty excited to hear the talks and learn about the 3 new apostles that are going to be called!! This weekend should be pretty great!!!

Things are good here in Las Delicias! I have been here for about 5 and a half months now and I know pretty much all the members and a lot of the menos activos! It's kind of nice knowing all the streets and all the members so well! Its also kind of hard sometimes because I loose a little bit of faith if we have already knocked a door, or already tried to reactivate a member! I think that's why it's pretty important that we are transferred areas every once in a while!! I have been able to see this ward change and it's pretty cool! They recently changed a couple of callings and then BAM!  things started to pick up and things started to change! We baptized and now the goal for this ward is to split into two. I don't know why because they only have 110 people going every week,  but I am working with the ward for this goal! It is amazing the difference it makes when people really put time and energy into their callings and do it to the best of their abilities! Amazing things can happen!! But it really makes me happy to see people that were once inactives blessing the sacrament, or giving a talk or just coming to church! This truly is an amazing ward!!

When I first got here, we were teaching a women named Geraldine. She was awesome! She took notes, she read, she had a baptismal date, she had come to church, gone to institute, she had a day to the baptismal interview and everything was awesome. Then she told her boyfriend. Man, her boyfriend was not happy! He doesn't want anything to do with the church and told her that if she joined they would end  things. They had been dating for 6 years, had already built a house to move into and were pretty much married, just without the title and living in different houses. So this decision was pretty tough for her and she dropped us. I had been praying that they would get in a fight or something! Anyways, this past week I had a feeling that we needed to pass by her house, even though she doesn't live in our part of the area(it would be the part of the area where the other elders work). We decided to go anyway! Oh and she is really hard to find! She is a police women and works a ton!! So we always had to teach her a weird times!! She basically is never home! ANYWAYS we went and we found her in the house!! Even better, her boyfriend and her had been fighting like crazy!! My prayers were working! So, we invited her to church and guess who came to church?! Geraldine ! I was pretty pumped! I really hope she gets baptized!! I feel like I have been a part of a cool miracle!!

The other night we were going back to the apartment(we live in like a apartment complex) so we have to go through a main door to enter. Anyways,  as I turned to go into the main door I bumped into a guy who was in the middle of kissing his girlfriend.  Ha-ha! I laughed pretty hard! #breakingupsin- good times!!

We are trying to work with the relatives of our converts! But, right now we are stuggling a little bit finding new people to teach!! But, its alright!! We eat well and the members are pretty good to us! 

I am doing well! Just trying to loose a little bit of weight! Elder Black and I are doing some pretty good workouts in the morning!

I love you guys!!

Elder Carter
Cool pic!
 
Having fun!
 
 
 
The City of Rosario
 
Proud Canadian!
 
Our apartment complex

Thursday, 24 September 2015

Always learning!

September 21, 2015

Hey guys! What's up?

This week has been good, although not a ton has happened. We are sure working hard! We are still going to the clinic for Elder Black's knees, but its alright! This should be the last week! I have started to appreciate it, as it gives me some good time to study and think about stuff!! One of the things that I have been studying is the story of the brother of Jared. I really like that story but one thing that really sticks out to me is in Ether 6 verse 6 (I think that is where it is). He is talking about  how the stones that Jesus touched with His hands, led them through so much time in the darkness. I was checking in with my good friend, the seminary manual, and I read about how today, we too have stones that are bright and lead us through times of darkness. They are the apostles and prophets. I learned how sometimes we are in darkness but if we follow the words of the prophets, both modern and old, they can be our light and we will be able to arrive in the promise land,which would be the celestial kingdom. It was really cool to see it this way!!

I have been studying tons out of the seminary manual and it's got some pretty good stuff in it!! I wish I had payed more attenion in seminary. Because  now I am learning so much stuff which is actually the same stuff I could have learned before!!! Well, at least I am learning it now!! Ha-ha!!! I am finding it pretty cool to look at all the details in the Book of Mormon because there are so many!!!

Well, the bad news is that I have another in grown toe nail!! Haha!!!  At least this time it is on the other foot! Lol!!!! ! I feel like I have seen the operation done so many times I could do it with my eyes closed! And now that we can't go to into Santa Fe (where the best doctor is) we have to find a different place here in Rosario . Luckily, it doesn't really hurt, it's just kind of there. Hahaha- it's kind of funny how many times this has happened to me!! But don't worry Bita and mom,  I am fine!! It is interesting how everyone always says that you learn stuff on your mission that will help you for the rest of your life. I am trying to figure out how this repeated experience will help me. Sure hope it doesn't mean I will keep getting in grown toenails for the rest of my life!! They are annoying!

We got a new ward mission leader this week and he is pretty awesome! He comes out and visits people with us 5 times a week! It is pretty awesome! And we can see that alot of things are changing for the good now that he is coming out and helping us so much! It is amazing what a difference it is making!! He is such a good example to me of how to magnify my calling, no matter where I am - at work, the mission, with my family, etc., but it's sweet to see this!! 

I am doing really good! It is getting hot again! We are working hard, trying to find new people to teach! I am enjoying my time here, especially with the new converts! They are super sweet!!!


Love you guys!
Elder Carter
Post surgery visit :)
 
Loving these "asados"!!
 
 
Look how good they feed us!!!
 
A little bit of sightseeing
 
A bit groggy after surgery :(
 
ICan't get enough of  these!!

Thursday, 17 September 2015

Reflections

Hey guys!!

This week was good! Turns out that my comp has a problem with his knee, so every morning we have to go into downtown to do some therapy. I can't go in, so I sit outside and study. He torn his mcl and pcl and lcl and a bunch of other stuff before the mission and then hurt it while he was here so he is recovering right now. But man, taking time out from working is not that fun. I feel like I can't do a ton, but I guess thats just life! I try to talk to people on the bus ride there, but its tough cause I feel like we aren't doing much in the area. Luckily, this is the last week of therapy! Although I do really want him to have a good recovery so we can get to work in the upcoming weeks! haha knee problems!! In the meantime, I have had a good opportunity to study and reflect!!

We had a council meeting with president Zanni this week! It went really good! There was a ton of information and new thing which was really cool!! Elder Bluth was also there cause he is a zone leader in pergamino now, so that was pretty good to see him again!! 

One of the things that I liked from the leadership council was a video we watched of a talk given by Elder Jeffrey R. Holland. He talked about salvation and the fact that it is not easy and the fact that missionary work isnt easy either. He talked alot about how usually missionaries have success at 9:29 at night, or when its pouring rain, or when its super hot out. It's because when we put in everything we can and have given it our all, with nothing left, that is when we will be blessed. He talks about how the road to salvation is not a cheap experience. We can't just choose to be disciples of Christ when its nice and sunny outside. When we decide to be a follower of Christ, its a lifetime commitment. Through the good times and the bad. Its the same as a missionary, we cant choose to be a good obedient, hard working missionary when everything is going awesome. We need to be giving it our all even when things are hard. When its raining, when we can't find anyone, when nothing seems to be working. Then after we keep pushing past that, we will be blessed!

I have seen that a lot on my mission. Every time I have seen success, there has been a hard time infront of it. Hard time with the area, hard time with my comp, with the members, etc,. and it's not that fun. But when we use our agency to choose to keep going and giving it our all no matter what, then we will be rewarded with success! We will be able to grow and progress the most in this life! It was so cool for me to think about all this through the week!

Another thing that I really liked about the council meeting was when we talked about is what motivates us to work? When times are hard, what makes us work? When we want to sleep or go home, what keeps us going?  For me, there were a bunch of things that crossed my mind. I thought about my family, my friends, the people I am helping, the blessings I receive, etc., friends, but when it comes down to it, what really motivates me is Jesus Christ. I know that one day I will have to stand in front of him and either feel good about my mission or not. In front of Him,  there are no valid excuses, because he felt everything. He sacrificed everything for me and I want to be able to say I gave it my all for just 2 years. He died for me, and I will give Him my best for just 2 years to try and help some of my brothers and sisters.

This week has been good for self reflection.  We are looking for new people to teach, but are slowly finding them! 

I love you ! 
Elder Carter

Sunday, 13 September 2015

Baptism Day!

September 9, 2015 

Hey guys!!

How's it going? This was a pretty big week!!

On Saturday, Miguel and Silvia were baptized!!!  It went super well!! There were tons of people there to support them. was the baptism of miguel and silvia!! Their friends from Concordia (an 8 hour drive away) came up to help with the baptism!! These friends from Concordia were the ones that introduced them through the church. It is how we got in the door! Haha! They met in buenos aires at a conference for kids with Down Syndrome. Both their kids have Downs Syndrome.  The members just started sharing the gospel with Miguel . Miguel agreed to listen to us and really gained a strong testimony!! So they came up and he baptized and confirmed one of them! 

We reactivated a guy named Ordóñez  and we thought it would be a great idea if he could participate in the baptism as well! So we helped him prepared to baptize Miguel, while their friend from Concordia baptized Silvia! Well Hermano Ordóñez  is a pretty nervous guy. He was suuuper nervous right before the baptism! As a matter of fact, as he was walking in the font he fell cause he was so nervous. Anyways after Miguel went under water 3 times, he was finally baptized!! Hermana Ordóñez got it right!!   I sure was praying for this guy cause man, he was super nervous. And it worked because he got the prayer right after the third time! But I think it really helped him in his eternal progression. Then on Sunday we had another recent convert give the holy ghost to Silvia! That went super well!! He was pretty nervous but I think it helped him a ton!

It was super cool to watch these men prepare to do these sacred ordinances. They really prepared!! I realized that some times becuase we have taken the sacrament so many times or seen so many baptisms we start to get dull to how meaningful these things really are. I was impressed by their example, preparing to every little last detail! It was sweet!!

When they were changing and everyone was waiting in the chapel, we were watching a video of the First Vision! It was an awesome time for me to refelct on everything. And a feeling of overwhelming peace and comfort came to me. I think I realized what affect the decision of 2 young men to serve a mission had on Miguel and Silvia. They now can live with their Heavenly Father again after this life. Throughout  all their problems and trials they will have a different family supporting them and that they will receieve so many blessing! It was an amazing feeling and I feel privileged to be part of it! What amazing people!

Miguel and Silvia said that they felt something very special when they recieved the spirit! I was super happy for them! After so much time,  they are finally part of the church!! Its almost as if they were part of my family! Haha- like a couple of aunts and uncles!! 

The big news for this week is that I got a new compaion! His name is Elder Black, he is from Colorado and he is massive!!!!! He is like 6'5 and is probably 235 pounds. Nobody is going to rob us now!! Haha- but he is pretty cool! He likes playing basketball so I think we will get along!

I am still here in Las Delicias. It was pretty sad for me to say goodbye to Elder Bluth. Three transfers together is a long time to be with the same companion, and it was pretty fun! It was definitely a rougher day and night after he left! It just doesn't feel the same! But I am super excited also because Elder Black is super cool too!! I learned so much from Elder Bluth. Its crazy how fast the time flew by!!

This week I have been studying a little bit more in the Book of Mormon! I was reading in 1Nephi 16 where Nephi breaks his bow and arrow. Then his whole family is complaining, even his father Lehi, who is the prophet at the time. Anways Nephi builds a new bow and arrow. Then what does he do? He goes to his father, who was just complaining to God and asks him where he should go to hunt! I never really realized why Nephi goes to his dad whn we has had visions from God himself.  Well, the seminary manual helped me out a little bit on this one. He asked his father because he is the prophet at the time, and he receives revelation for his family. The visions that Nephi had were for himself, not for his family. The natural man would jump right ahead and ask God himself. I have also been thinking that the fact that  Nephi had a relationship with God and the fact that his father had just sinned by complaining against God, could have made him search for power and hop over Lehi to be the prophet.  But he didnt, he realized taht we are all humans and that we make mistakes, our leaders too. And we still have to respect and support our leaders. it was pretty cool for me to see it this way! 

I hope you guys have a good week. I am sad that Elder Bluth left. It's wierd to work here with out him! 

Thanks for everything! 
I Love you guys!!
Elder Carter