Monday, July 24, 2017

E-mail Week 53: July 24, 2017. Norma's Faith to Obey The Word of Wisdom.

So this email is going to be quick, because I don't have time, but this week was great. 

We had 4 interchanges and I got to know all of our Zone.  I was in Melgar, which is a party city, but also looks like a jungle and is way pretty.  I also got to go to Espinal which is one of the hottest places in the mission.  It was way awesome to be in these intercambios.  I love all the Elders of our Zone and am so grateful to be with them and to learn from them.
Also we had a great experience with an investigador, Norma. She has been drinking coffee all her life, 4 times every day.  And we explained to her about the Word of Wisdom and she was quite surprised but she accepted so that she could be more in line with God. It was amazing to see her faith--that just to live God's commandments she was willing to change all the culture of her family. And I am so grateful for these amazing blessings that God has given me to know these people.

And that's it. 

I love you guys.

Elder Parson

This is Melgar, a baptism that we had in the District.

Our group of Elders after transfers.

Monday, July 17, 2017

E-mail Week 52: July 17, 2107

Buenas tardes, como vamos?

How is everyone doing?  I hope that you are all doing well.  I am doing fantastic!!!! 

So this week we were able to go on a lot of visits thanks to a convert whose name is Camilo.  It is incredible to see how much the gospel has changed him.  His life before was crazy, he lived in a really dangerous part of Bogota and has had a fair amount of difficulties but now he is devoted to the gospel.  We were able to visit a lot of people and it was so cool to hear him bear his testimony. Also we had a multizone conference in Ibague, an awesome city two hours away.  It was so awesome to see some friends that I have been with and to also hear President Baquerizo and his wife talk to us.  I love them so much. We also gave a training to the Zones about the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ.  I have realized that many times I teach a lesson just focusing on faith or repentance without mentioning one of the greatest stories known to man, about God and Jesus Christ appearing to a young boy to answer his question and about Christ revealing more of His word to a young boy, to a darkened world to help us improve more in the Doctrine of Christ and to teach us how we can obtain every answer to our questions. It is truly incredible. I hope to be able  to testify to all of this amazing story that has brought such joy to me and my family.

Also another part of the training was focused on how we obtain the power of Christ in our lives.  He has all power and we can obtain this power.  Hermana Baquerizo told us the first part to obtain this power is to learn about Christ.  It is so true.  I was studying all the topics on Christ in the topical guide (a reference guide for the Book of Mormon and the Bible) and it was amazing how much I learned.  I learned how I can follow his example better and I am so much happier as well.

Well that's all the time I have.  I hope all of you have a great week and remember, Christ loves you!

Con mucho amor,

Elder Parson

Ward Mission Leader

The Girardot Zone

Elder Palma (Ibague Zone Leader) and Elder Ribeiro

Monday, July 10, 2017

E-mail Week 51. July 10, 2017.

So this week has flown by but it's been really good. I am sorry, I never have enough time because P-day goes by so fast. But this week we had the opportunity to go up to Bogota and have intercambios with the Assistentes which was awesome!  I was with Elder Valverde from Ecuador and we had a blast. Although we were kind of sick, we were able to go out and proselyte. It is quite interesting--in Bogota, the people are quite closed off and it is difficult to try and talk to them. And they also think that we are thieves so they get scared and often jump away.  But we talked with so many people.  It was quite funny, we got rejected and rejected, chased by someone who told us that what we were doing was awful, and the rejected some more, but it was a way funny experience. I used to think when we are getting rejected it is because we are doing something wrong, but now I realize that when we are rejected, it is just another way to testify of Jesus Christ.  Needless to say, I love Elder Valverde.  We had a great time. 

Also we had an Open House at the church this week that was way successful. We had a ton of people that came to learn more about the gospel and about the church. It was awesome to see that when members invite their friends to learn about the gospel, many love the message. It was super fun!

For P-day today, we went to a different town called Chicoral and hiked. I got fried but it was way fun. 

Well my friends, that's all the time I've got.  

Have a fantastic week!

Monday, July 3, 2017

E-mail Week 50: July 3, 2017. Felix Sneider's Baptism.

So this week was another great week.  We had the amazing opportunity to go up to Bogota and receive training from our awesome Mission Presidente, Presidente Baquerizo. He has helped me so much in the mission and I was so happy to hear him. He talked a lot about goals, that sometimes we plan to find many investigators or to baptize three people in a month, but then after making those plans we never go back to review them. I realized that I am struggling with this. But we made the effort to always plan for our goals. We have put the goal of 6 baptisms in the next 3 months, which I have never had happen, but when we started to always plan for our goals, about who we needed to work with, or who we needed to find, we were blessed with a baptism!!!!!  It was an amazing opportunity to see the blessings of the Lord in my life. 

Felix Sneider was baptized and he is one of the most prepared persons that I have seen for baptism. He had been coming to church since January but the missionaries didn't visit him until my companion found out that he wasn't a member of the church. He was ready to make some changes  in his life and was so excited for his baptism. We were going to plan it for the next week and we asked him what he thought but he said "No, I am ready now."  And then he got baptized on Saturday.  It was such a neat experience and it all came from his friend inviting him to learn more about the gospel. We can never know when someone is ready, all we have to do is do our part so that they know about the gospel. 

I love you guys so much.  Thank you for your prayers.  This week I definitely felt lifted up by them. Please keep sharing the amazing light of Christ that I know you have to brighten a darkened world.

With a lot of love,

Elder Parson

Felix Sneider Baptism

Monday, June 26, 2017

E-mail Week 49: June 26, 2017.

So this email will just be a whole bunch of photos because I haven't been able to send a lot the past few weeks. But this week was awesome. We were able to have a lot of intercambios (interchanges), which I love. Interchanges are when we go to different areas and are with different missionaries for 3 days. I first was with Elder Salazar from Peru in my area. This guy is a stud.  I love him because he really changed his life with the gospel. The only thing he wants is to be the best missionary and he has a powerful testimony of the Atonement of Christ. After that we had an intercambio with Elder Ribeiro from Brazil. This guy is crazy but is such a stud! He has about the same time in the mission as I do but he is so fun to talk to. He is so awesome to contact with​.  I also had an intercambio with Elder Monson.  He was with me in the CCM (Missionary Training Center) and I haven't seen him for over six months. But he is so awesome. He is opening an area that is a small farm town and is doing awesome. It was so fun to be with him, talking about the experiences that we have had in the mission. It is super sad to think that we almost have a year in the mission because it has been so awesome to serve the Lord this year. And we want to keep serving Him with all our might. But he is such a good example for me and I am so grateful for the time I had. 

Well it looks like I am out of time.  I hope you guys have a fantastic day. 

I love you.

District in Neiva

Friends in Neiva

Members in Neiva

Members in Neiva

Monday, June 19, 2017

E-mail Week 48: June 19, 2017. Getting to know our new Zone.

Buenos tardes!  This week has been crazy, but awesome! I will just start right in. So this week we have been traveling a lot. In our Zone, there 16 missionaries but they live in outlying towns.  So we went to their houses and helped them clean a little bit.  We also helped Elders find their houses as many are training and opening the area.  But it has been awesome here. Our branch has about 140 people attending and  missionaries work there. We have been learning a lot about the area because my companion has only been here for 3 weeks so we are learning a lot together.  My companion is awesome, although he looks like he's from China, he's from Lima, Peru.   He is a stud!  He is way funny and way energetic.  It has been way fun to teach with him.  Also we have found some awesome people this week.  One is named Diana and she has a baptismal date for July 8th.  If all goes well, she will be able to reach her date.  We are hoping for a lot of baptisms in the zone this week and should have five if all goes well.

Well my time is basically up but I hope all is going well and I hope you know how much I love you. 

Have a great week!


Elder Parson

Colombian steak and sausage called rellena which is pig's blood in rice

The others are part of the Z
Colombian steak and sausage called rellena which is pig's blood in rice.

Part of our Zone enjoying lunch.

Preparation Day Soccer.

Monday, June 12, 2017

E-mail Week 47: June 13, 2017. Out of the frying pan...and into the fire. Transfers to Girardot to work with Elder Roque.

So this week has been awesome... we had a fantastic week to end the transfers.  We found some awesome families and finally received some referrals from the Ward.  And the coolest part, MARIA CONSUELO GOT BAPTIZED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  That was  such an awesome experience. She really was a miracle. She was a reference that we had been looking for for two months, and one day we got a prompting to go look for her in the farm part of our area. While we were down there contacting, we felt impressed to ask  a lady if she knew a Maria Consuelo -- and it was her! She was so ready for her baptism, especially after the death of her son and ever since she has been coming to church, she hasn't cried for her son and has felt more peace.  It was an awesome baptismal service and she invited all her family. Also, the family Chicas Arias has been coming to church for 2 Sundays and they are loving it. It really hurts me that we didn't go back for them earlier, but I am very happy knowing they will follow the Gospel.

So about the subject line of this email...we had transfers last night. I was very sure that I was going to Bogota, because normally missionaries only stay in the hot areas  of the mission for 8 months and I have 10 months.  So I was really surprised when I got the transfer call to Giradot, which is the hottest zone in all the mission...and as Zone Leader.  I thought my Zone Leader was pulling my leg so I didn't think we had transfers, and then I received the call that yes I am going to Giradot and yes I will be Zone Leader.  It is amazing how inadequate I feel about that. But right now I am here in  Giradot and I am way excited to work here with my new companion Elder Roque.  Although I know I lack a whole lot, if there is anything I have learned on my mission, it is that through the Gospel of Christ, we can achieve all things.

I was quite sad to leave Las Palmas after the amazing relationships that I had with the members and with the investigadores, but I am sure that my companion will be able to take care of them.  I am so grateful for the Lord and Him giving me the opportunity to serve there.

Thank you for all your prayers and  support.  Once again, I can't send pictures because of Colombian computers; but I would just like to leave with my testimony.  I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior, that He died for us and left us the perfect example to live a perfect life. And the mission is the best because it is the opportunity to testify  of Christ in word and in deed. I am so grateful for this opportunity--especially when today I have been serving for 11 months. 

I love you guys,

Elder Parson