We went to the temple with some of our converts and with the ward to do baptisms for their family members! It was awesome. Everyone in our ward is so great to help the new members and to be able to go to the temple with them was super special.
Presidente and Hermana Larson came with us to teach some lessons! It was awesome. They’re so cute and just testified with such a strong spirit in our lesson.
Fernanda got baptized! Her brother, Francisco got baptized last week! Fernanda was having lots of questions and doubts and such and didn’t know if she wanted to be baptized. So we were there teaching her in the stairwell of their building (we can’t enter a house if there’s not another adult woman there) about real intent and receiving answers from God. Real intent is more than just really wanting an answer, it means you say that when He answers you, you’re going to do His will, even if it’s not the answer you wanted. We read DyC 9:8-9 and talked about how God answers prayers through the Holy Ghost and invited her to pray. We were just kneeling there in the stairwell and she says the most humble sincere prayer ever and the spirit was so strong, there are no words to describe it and she just said she was ready to be baptized the next day!! It was an incredible experience. These kids are such a good example of faith and humility and trusting in Gods will.
It’s Hermana Clarks last week so we are crying but that’s fine, she’s gonna be fine in Utah and going to keep #bautizandoelmundo :)) I’m seriously so grateful that we were able to be companions for these past 4 months, I’ve learned so much about faith and seen so many miracles with Hermana Clark!
This week was great and full of miracles (like every week, but y’all get the idea that there are lots of miracles here in Bolivar). Here are this week’s highlights:
Ten investigators came to church yesterday! Woohoo! We were only expecting seven and turned around after the sacrament and three more people had shown up :)
Zone service project at the hospital. It was super fun. Fun fact: I have yet to see a lawnmower here in Lima, most people just use weed whackers and we used a combination of shovels, pickaxes, and bush trimming shears to cut grass and clean up the gardens.
Interviews with Presidente Larson
I got to accompany another Hermana to the dentist because she broke her tooth in half. Another fun fact: Here in Lima people just have random dentist offices in their houses so thats cool.
See the picture below of the funny message we received from our investigator Diego! He was contacting people in the street with Light the World pass-along cards. :)
“…following the Savior will not remove all of your trials. However, it will remove the barriers between you and the help your Heavenly Father wants to give you. God will be with you. He will direct your steps. He will walk beside you and even carry you when your need is greatest.”
– President Dieter F. Uchtdorf
We see this every day here in the mission, we spend all day inviting people to come unto Christ and it is incredible to see the changes people make in their lives to be able to do that, and the strength and help they recieve from God through prayer and reading the Book of Mormon.
This week was cool, we were supposed to have a zone meeting on Tuesday but it got cancelled last minute so we had 2.5 hours to knock doors and ended up meeting some of the coolest people who are super prepared for the gospel.
On thursday Gianella got baptized! Her friend, who is going on a mission soon introduced her to the church and she’s the best. She is so willing to do whatever the Lord asks and keep all the commandments and just loves the Book of Mormon and is seriously an example to me. It’s been hard because her family didn’t really want her to get baptized but she just told us that she knew it was true and she knew she had to go through with it.
Friday we had a multizone conference with Presidente and Hermana Larson and I learned a lot. Then Hermana Kilpack ended up coming to stay with us again for this weekend and it’s so crack up. She’s new in the mission and was staying with us before and basically its just a party all the time because she and Hermana Clark are super funny.
General Conference was the best, the members helped us again with the bus van to pick up everyone to go to the stake center to watch it. We were able to watch it in English and it is so powerful to be able to listen to prophets and apostles testify of Jesus christ. I loved Elder Nelsons talk about the Book of Mormon; it really is the word of God and has the answerrs that we need. I’ve seen so many times in my life and in the lives of the people we teach that we can find answers to our questions and our lives improve when we read the Book of Mormon every day.
(If you didnt get to watch conf, check out LDS.org and give it a listen, I promise it’ll make you happier :))
Last Monday night President Larson called to break the bad news: (1) I was being transferred and (2) that I would be called to be a Sister Training Leader (hahaha biggest joke ever). I was so bummed to be leaving Cayetano and Hermana Valencia, but it’s all good….
My new area is Bolivar in la zona de Magdelena. My companion is Hermana Clark, from Bountiful Utah! My new area is so different from Cayetano, its way nicer and also HUGE, the ward is super great and the Bishop is so helpful already and I’ve only been here 1 week.
Hermana Clark ran track at the University of Utah, so let’s just say she loves to run and I do not, so it’s been an interesting week. hahaha, nah its all good though, pray that I survive.
The Hermanas de Palao (my previous zone) had a problem with their house and are living with us for like 2 weeks and it’s so fun. I was in the Zone Palao with Hermana Zaldivar for 3 transfers and she is training a new missionary Hermana Kilpack from Utah, so basically were just having a blast the 4 of us living together. And we go on splits every day so I’m having to learn the streets and members and everything really fast.
This week I reached 7 months in the mission and today is my 20th birthday so I feel super old. Today has been super fun though, including the peruvian tradition of smashing eggs and throwing flour at the birthday person :)
Not much time to say anything but theres lots of photos so hope that makes up for it.
Not gonna lie, this week was rough because literally nobody was in their houses or wanted to talk to us. But it’s all good because as always we are seeing miracles here in our sector.
First of all, finally Luis got baptized! His family is all members and he’s talked to the missionaries for years but just recently he was finally able to get married and make some great changes to get baptized this weekend. Literally, every day when we went to his house, he had another problem or obstacle to deal with but its been super cool to see him change his attitude and always say that now he’s putting God first in everything. With that, he was able to make this great step and enter into a covenant with our Heavenly Father. It’s incredible. The gospel of Jesus Christ changes lives, for real.
We had interviews with Presidente Larson this week, which are always fun.
After a whole week of not finding people to teach, we were blessed to find some super cool people on Saturday who are really great and interested in learning more.
At times, you may long for peace as you face uncertainty and what seem to you to be looming challenges. The sons of Mosiah learned the lesson that the Lord taught to Moroni. It is a guide for us all: “If men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all [who] humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them” (Ether 12:27).
Moroni said that when he “heard these words,” he “was comforted” (Ether 12:29). They can be a comfort to all of us. Those who do not see their weaknesses do not progress. Your awareness of your weakness is a blessing as it helps you remain humble and keeps turning you to the Savior. The Spirit not only comforts you, but He is also the agent by which the Atonement works a change in your very nature. Then, weak things become strong.
It’s great to be able to help people feel this spirit and experience the Atonement in their lives and change as a result, myself included.
Tomorrow I hit my 6-month mark in the mission. It’s been the craziest past 6 months but also the best. I am so happy to be a missionary because I get to testify about our savior, Jesus Christ every day to everyone.
*Last week’s message was flagged as spam by many email providers. Check your own spam folder for messages from Hermana Erickson and please mark “Not Spam”.
If you missed last week’s exciting update, you can find it here: ¿Yo También?
Now for this week’s news…
This week was great. The highlights:
Humberto and his entire family came to church with us this week!
We had interviews with Presidente and Hermana Larson and it is always fun to talk to them.
We are seeing miracles with the Book of Mormon. For real. Two different investigators started reading the Book of Mormon and praying this week and the next time we talked to them, they were convinced that it’s true because both of them were able to have super great opportunities at work which they really needed.
It’s incredible the spirit and power that comes into our lives when we read the Book of Mormon. It reminds me of Mosiah 2:41. It’s a commandment to read the scriptures and when we follow it we can have both temporal and spiritual blessings. Its been incredible to be able to see how people can have their hearts softened and change for the better as they discover that God answers prayers and as their faith in Christ increases.
Our house got broken into and some stuff was stolen but we are alive and doing great. As a result, we go to Rimac – a different missionary sector – to sleep in the Hermana Capacitadoras (Sister Trainers) house every night. It’s a party.
We tried to make cookies today but the oven in the institute building was out of gas so I guess we are just going to eat the dough.
Note: Wednesday night, Becky received a phone call from Hermana Larson, the mission president’s wife, who informed of us of the theft referred to above, although with few details. She shared that other missionaries were impressed with Rachel’s unflappable response to the break-in and referred several times to Hermana Erickson as a “Rock”. Via our weekly email messages, we obviously inquired of Rachel how she felt and for additional details. The following is the full account.
We woke up Wednesday morning to see all our stuff all over the floor and the doors open and one of the dresser drawers in the hallway, so obviously we wondered what on earth happened. The balcony outside our window is covered in dust and we could see footprints leading into the house through the window. Also there is a clinic next door with a security camera and [our landlord went and reviewed the recording]. Turns out someone scaled the wall up to the balcony, came in through the window, searched around a bunch and left through the door. The funniest part is that they entered at like 2:45 and left at about 3:10 and my companion and I were asleep the whole time. Even though they entered the room where we were sleeping and stole stuff out of our dresser. So now everyone knows that we sleep like the dead…how embarrassing. Oh well. Mostly I think it is funny that we didn’t wake up at all. I guess that’s probably better because if I woke up to see someone in our house I don’t know what I’d do. Also, just thinking if I was a thief, I’d feel bad robbing a house with pictures of Jesus everywhere!
It’s been interesting and I’m grateful that all is well. The Lord protects his missionaries, I’m sure of that!
Not sure what Hermana Larson told y’all but I told her that y’all are chill and wouldn’t freak out so I hope I didn’t lie!