Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Last e-mail home! 11/18/14

Well, last letter from Argentina!!! So, I’m finished! Wow! I can’t believe that it has been a year and half!!! This week was the best way to end the mission! Like I told you, President Ayre made this the week of miracles! He challenged everyone to break the records in their area. Well, as a zone we set some goals and we got ‘em!!! We set a new record in Parque Patricios, 30 of 50 lessons with a member present in a week!!!!!! We worked so hard, and the Lord truly blessed us!!! Then on Saturday, Elder Christofferson came! It was an incredible experience! I will tell you all about it later, but it was exactly what I needed!!!

And then on Sunday was our Despedida, the meeting that they do for the dying missionaries where they can share their testimonies with all the members and investigators and other missionaries. So, Hermana Duran and I sang Jesus the Very Thought of Thee. They said it was great! I was worried because I was losing my voice, but I know that the Lord blessed me in that moment to be able to sing! Then, I actually made everyone laugh twice while I was giving my testimony.

Then, on Monday I had my last interview with President, and boy was that spiritual! The mission is indescribable!! And then that same day the Relief Society threw me a going away party! That was really special! I will show you everything when I get home!!!

Now I am with Hermana Jensen, and we will be companions for a couple days more! I love this so much, and I just don’t want to leave! It is probably the hardest thing I have ever had to do. It’s just so true this work! You can’t participate and not know the Lord; that He exists and that He loves all of His children dearly because He gives you that love for them. This is the truth.  I know it.

Hermana Arntsen

Sunday, 16 November 2014

November 10, 2014 E-mail

This week the weather was so beautiful!!!! But, now the clouds came again and it heated up. It is getting into summer after all! 

It has been a very jam-packed 18 months! I feel like they’ve flown, but at the same time it has been a long 18 months. It’s a strange combination of feelings.

So, this week was great, as always! I hit a new personal record for member present lessons taught in a week! And, this week President has challenged the entire mission to break the records of the area in lessons with a member present, investigators in sacrament meeting, and investigators with a baptismal date! VAMOS!!!!!!

As a mission this year we have the goal of 2000 baptisms, and we are well on our way to hitting it by the end of December!!!!!! 

This weekend an apostle is coming! I think it is Elder Christofferson!!

The Relief Society has announced that they are throwing me a farewell get together next Monday! I couldn’t ask for a better time to be a missionary!!!!! Or a better time to honorably finish a full time mission!!!!!!! Quite literally the BEST 18 MONTHS OF MY ENTIRE EXISTENCE!!!!!!!! Oh, and President Ayres did a flip on the trampoline! (www.bsasno.blogspot.com)
Do the work!!!!!


Hermana Arntsen

Hermana Arntsen and Hermana Zendejas

Zone Conference
Hermanas doing community service painting

Sunday, 9 November 2014

November 3, 2014 e-mail


I actually did know about Hermana Heyman (her illness in the mission field). In the Caballito ward I met one of their (the Heyman’s) missionaries and a fellow mission president of theirs, and they told me about it. The mission field is a place of incredible opposition so that there may be incredible miracles!

A few months ago we had a similar stake conference broadcast with a few stakes in Uruguay and Paraguay too. Elder Bednar spoke about repentance! How strong!

So, this week we had all the seasons in one week!!! It was incredibly hot and then really cold and then we had about three or four consecutive days of rain. All day! Even right now as I write. This morning it was so cold that you could see a little bit of snow in the rain (we are on the 11th floor)! It melted almost instantaneously, but it was a cool experience!

This weekend I had a wonderful experience with fasting! It quite literally brings us closer to Heavenly Father! It’s a little personal so I won’t share it, but know that my testimony has grown this week about the power of fasting and prayer. The two of them have to go together to get a solid result (Hel. 3:35) That’s why in Doctrine and Covenants it says that we need to establish a house of fasting and a house of prayer! That is how our homes can become more like the temple! I felt a piece of the Savior’s presence so subtlety powerful accompanying me yesterday that I almost felt I had a little part of the temple with me! I know that renewing our covenants every Sunday is an essential part of our purification as children of God, and that the simple act of taking the Sacrament brings us closer to Him!

I love you!!!

Hermana Arntsen

Sunday, 2 November 2014

October 27, 2014 E-mail

So, this week we finally got to teach the cousin of Hermana Nelly, a member in the ward. Her cousin, Alan, has been involved in the scouting program with the church for the last five years and has started going to church the past month. We finally got to sit down with him on Saturday and teach him a lesson. He really liked it and said that he had been missing a chat like that before! He seems really anxious to read and seems pretty golden. Only problem is that we can only see him on the weekends, but I think that he will progress well! 

Also, we found out that Anita and Domingo probably won't get their documents until the 20th of November. So, it looks like I won't be here for their baptism, but it has been a privilege teaching them! And, it’s not over yet!!!! The ward is really helping them feel welcome, and they have more and more friends every week!

The other picture is a man who was painting this building all morning. Keep in mind that you can't see the ground and I took that picture from an 11th floor window. I watched him start in the upper right corner of the building and work his way down the building and then come back up and move a little to the left and go down the column again and then come up and work his way left and down again and again and again all morning long..... And on top of that, I think he will have to go back and do a second coat because the first was a little thin. Wow! What a job! And, considering my incredible fear of heights, what courage!! I think that that is how life often is. We have such and incredible mountain of tasks in front of us that sometimes just looking at all we have to do, we give up right there without having started! But, if we have the courage to say “Yes! I can do it all!”, then we can work section by section, up and down, over a little more until we finish! We just have to pick a task and decide to do all that we can with that task, and then leave it and move on. That’s what this man would do. Wherever he was, he would paint all that he could reach and then lower himself, and then paint all he could reach, and then lower himself.... Pretty cool, huh?

Love you!

Hermana Arntsen
Anita and Domingo, Hermana Dickson & Hermana Arntsen

Man painting a wall

Sunday, 26 October 2014

October 13, 2014 & October 20, 2014

October 13, 2014

Yes I did love conference!! Today we had a Sister’s P-day in the mission home and we watched the General Women’s Broadcast! How inspiring!!!! Pres. Uchtdorf always knows how to remind us of our divine nature and potential!

I’m sure the blessings of missionary service extend into the eternities considering it is such a special calling that we were all pre-destined and prepared to fulfill it. Because really it is hard sometimes. It is quite literally the hardest thing I have ever had to do, but all of the difficulty and the struggle disappears in the lovely knowledge that I need to be here doing this now. These are eternal consequences. (Think about that all of you young priesthood holders with a missionary obligation. :D)

This week was incredible!!! We worked so hard, and we saw so many miracles. In the end the people took their decision with their gifted agency, but I feel so content as to my part that I know I was able to do what the Lord wanted from me this week. That is the most wonderful feeling in all the universe!

So, today at President's house, after watching the conference, we had a wonderful privilege. President Ayre is friends with the one....the only.....Linda K. Burton!!!! And we got to have a lovely phone call with her!! That was incredible!!! We had just heard her speak and then we got to speak with her!!! She is just “a love” as they say here! So sweet!! So that was cool!! So and the end of the transfer, there is the meeting to say good-bye to the missionaries and they give their testimonies...well Hermana Duran and Iwill be singing in the meeting “Jesus the Very Thought of Thee” and we will see how that goes!! :D

There is always so much more to learn, and so much more to do, and so much more to be!!! Remember the parable of the talents!!! We can never plateau! You have to be happy with the progress you’ve made yes!!! But never be satisfied!!!!!!! There are always more godly attributes to develop and talents to bless the world and others!!! Remember the Restored Gospel is the most IMPORTANT thing that anyone can learn and live in this life!!  So SHARE IT!!!!!!!!
Just imagine how important it is for Heavenly Father (Moses 7).
Hermana Arntsen

October 20, 2014
I am really excited to see you and be able to progress in the plan the Heavenly Father has for me, but I do not want to leave this place either!!!! TOO HARD!!!! AHH!!!!!

There is not much to say about this week! The Lord has been guiding us and leading us to more people who need the gospel and the inactive families who need to return! The bishop is starting to help us more and taking an interest in our investigators so it’s all GREAT!! The bishop of a ward is your best friend as a missionary!!! Sorry, I don’t have any rally crazy awesome stories to tell y’all this week. Every day is an amazing awesome story!!!!
Don’t forget to do your missionary work today! Be a light!!!!!

Hermana Arntsen

Sister's day at the mission home!

Sunday, 12 October 2014

September 29, 2014 & October 7, 2014 E-mails

September 29, 2014

We don't get the General Relief Society broadcast on time because of the time difference it's so late for us. So they rebroadcast it, but the missionaries won't see it. We’ll hold a special meeting of just sisters and get to watch it together. But for general conference, oh yeah, we’ll be there!!! With all our investigators!!!! So, this weekend Cristian, the brother of Zulma who got baptized, came to church. He had to leave right after sacrament meeting so we didn't get to talk to him much, but he has been reading the Book of Mormon! Hoping to see some great progress there!!

Also last night we went to the Despedida (the farewell for the dying missionaries), and that was fun! I got to see some old companions and some members from other areas. But the highlight of this past week was.....drum roll..............I GOT TO SEE CINTHIA!!!! We went shopping last p-day in a place called Once, which is right close to her house, and Cinthia came to spend some time with us! It was great to see her! I can’t believe it’s almost been a year since her baptism!! She’s doing great! Wants to go on a mission and study at BYU! haha! How wonderful!!!!

This Friday we are going to the temple!!!!!!! So excited for that!!!!! And then Conference! And then transfers!! That will start my last transfer!!!!! AAAAAAAHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (Partial scream of excitement and majorly scream of fear/sadness)

Love you!!!

Hermana Arntsen
P.S. Just because I’m almost done does not mean letters/emails are not welcome! They always are!!!!!!!
October 7, 2014

Oh, you bet I heard that talk! (Elder Bednar’s talk) When an apostle says it, you know it's true!! Rock on Elder Bednar!! It was very special to hear the talks in Spanish. I just think of all of these people here that I have come to love so dearly and the dedication they have to Christ and the church and how they always have to listen to translators and don’t get to hear the voice of the Prophet. It was such a special demonstration of love for them that they could finally hear in General Conference the original words of a general authority. I know they felt very special! (And what a great break for the translators. ;D)

It is incredible the missionary force right now!! But what is more incredible is the missionary force that is not wearing a name tag!!! They are the behind the scenes workers!!

So, incredible story for this week! We were leaving General Conference Sunday night at 7:30 pm (the sessions are live so they are at 1 pm and 5 pm). And, while waiting for the bus we started talking with a lady there at the stop. She didn't seem too interested in the fact that we were missionaries but, as the majority of people here, believes in God and all that jazz. She lived about two hours away and had to get home fast to help her kids get ready for school the next day. The Spirit told me to say a prayer with her so that the bus would get here. I said, “Silly Spirit, we are in the middle of the street and she doesn't want anything to do with us.” Then the Spirit would insist and we battled like this for a number of minutes, and I imagined hesitating too long and then wanting to pray when the bus comes around the corner and miss the opportunity. Then the Spirit reminded me of Ammon, whose story I had read that very morning. When the evil men scatter the flocks of the king and the servants are in despair, Ammon thinks “what a great opportunity to show my power, or rather, the power that is in me.” It totally applied to the situation, so I explained the Cristina, the lady, what I had in mind. She looked a little weirded out, but said ok. Quite literally the second that I said “amen” her son cried “Hey, here it comes!” The look on Cristina’s face was a joy that only the Sprit and faith brings. I know that in the moment she knew that God existed. Later on the bus my companion tried to give her a Book of Mormon and she wouldn't take it. But I am calm about it. I know that thanks to the Spirit and this mantle of this divine calling, she had her faith strengthened if for only a moment.

I believe in the power of prayer! I believe in the inspiration of the Spirit! I believe that every person who had been baptized by priesthood authority, received the gift of the Holy Ghost, and lives worthy of the gift had the right to divine inspiration to bring about the saving blessing of eternity!! That is the truth! Unsure? Seek your confirming revelation!


Hermana Arntsen
Megan with Hermana Nelly & son (ward members)

Sunday, 28 September 2014

September 8, 15, and 26, 2014

September 15, 2014
This weekend we had a multi-stake service project at a hospital in Caballtio!! I got to go back to my old area and see a whole bunch of people!!!!!! It was great!!! For the service project we were sanding down the exterior and repainting the banisters outside. Then on the inside we had to paint on this paint remover and the scrape off the paint, which I think is what we were doing in the picture. It was really fun. So, that was in the morning and then we got home, ate a little, showered, and we had to go help get ready for the Capilla Abierta (Open Chapel) which was from 5 until 8. It was a great success!!! A ton of investigators came, and we received a ton of referrals!!! It was so great to see the participation of the ward members! They MAKE EVERYTHING POSSIBLE IN MISSIONARY WORK!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! If I haven’t said that enough over the past 16 months I had to say it again ;D.

Anita and Domingo are progressing nicely. We actually found out that they don't have to wait to get that document to get married if they have their passports. So we should be expecting their marriage and baptism pretty soon. Also we found a great family because of the Capilla Abierta. Elder Garcia just grabbed them off the street! They are really great ,and we are excited to work with them! All in all this week was a great success! Like always in missionary work!!!!!!

So, here we are just about to enter into spring! Looks like we won’t even hit summer until after I’m out of here so that’s good, I’ll get spared the heat! Here it’s been raining a ton, too! I’m so glad for good rain boots and a good coat!! Yesterday we got drenched!! We quite literally were dripping wet. But that’s mission life!!! It’s the BEST!!!!!! Wouldn’t ever change it!!!!!!
Don’t forget to study Preach My Gospel!!!
Love you!!!!!
Hermana Arntsen

September 22, 2014
This week was good. We found a really great family although we haven’t been able to talk as much with the kids yet but the dad, Miguel, is great! He read his assignment, and when he prayed with us he prayed to know “quickly” the truth about the Book of Mormon! He couldn’t come to church yesterday though, so I hope that he can hold out strong until next Sunday. He is really great. Then Domingo, from that nice senior couple, came yesterday even though Anita was sick and couldn’t come with him, he came alone. They are so great! I’m very grateful for the privilege it is to teach them! Hermana Dickson’s awesome! Growing every day!! She’ll be great!! No complaints just happiness in the work of the Lord!!!!

Oh! I almost forgot! I had a great epiphany this week!!! This shows why it’s so important to not just study the scriptures and doctrines but also to keep a study journal and to share your ideas. We were talking in companionship study about what we were going to teach a family, and I had an idea. So, normally we think that we have all these problems and challenges, so God gave us His Son and the Atonement to be able to handle them right? Well try thinking about it in reverse. As human beings naturally we need the Atonement to be able to return and live with God right? Right. So, Heavenly Father gives us trials and difficulties so that we use the Atonement for our salvation. Does that make sense? So, instead of the Atonement being the remedy for whatever problem, problems become the avenue to the Atonement. I hope that makes sense. All things point to Christ.  Pretty cool, huh? The Spirit knows great things!!! That’s why we have to diligently seek him and ask questions and study and discover!! Because HE WILL TELL US!!!!! (Moroni 10:5)
Love you!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Hermana Arntsen

September 26, 2014
(Excerpt from a quick note Megan wrote to us after hearing of the death of her great-grandmother this week.)

President called yesterday to let me know the Grandma Della passed away. Almost made it to 102! Wow! What an incredible life! I don’t know why Heavenly Father decided to give her such a wonderfully long and full life, but now I wonder if maybe I just needed the help to get on the mission and the inspiration. I know that she never made it to South America in all her travels, but I am doing it for her. Grandmother Della is an inspiration in her faith, charity, and spunky attitude! She had her share of life, and I’m sure she went happily.

I know what you are probably thinking: poor Megan; so much had to happen when she was away on her mission. But, please, don’t think that. It’s ok. (D&C 58:2-4 :D) Sure, it would have been nice to spend more time with Grandma Betty, Grandpa Alan, and Grandma Della before they passed on, and it would have been nice to be at Michael and Cassie’s wedding, but I will have all of the eternities to be with Grandma Betty, Grandpa Alan, and Grandma Della and even some earthly time to be with Michael and Cassie. All sacrifice is worth it in the service of the Lord. One thing I have learned is that sacrifice means to “make sacred.” All of these sacrifices are making this time that I have dedicated to the Lord even more SACRED. And I wouldn’t change that for all the time in the world!
I love you all so very much!!

Hermana Arntsen