Monday, May 29, 2017

E-mail Week 45: May 29, 2017.

So this email will be way short because I was kinda busy putting in referrals.

Nothing of interest really happened this week. We had a fairly good week and our Zone is doing awesome. We found a lot of new investigators and were able to help them. We went on a intercambio with the Zone Leaders which was awesome. I was with Elder Damiano from Atlanta and it was so much fun!  I learned so much from him.  He is such a well rounded missionary who is involved in all aspects of the work. 

I wish I could write more, but the time goes by so fast. I hope you all have a great week. 

Love you guys, 

Elder Parson

Monday, May 22, 2017

E-mail Week 44: May 22, 2017.

So this week went by way fast, but it was awesome. After coming ofg a great Sunday with a Mothers Cay call, we had another awesome opportunity to hear Elder Hugo Montoya from the Quorum of the Seventy. He taught us a lot of things about how we can gain more power and authority with our callings. I also had the opportunity to go to Ibague, which is another zone 3 hours from ours and it is so pretty. I also had the opportunity to see some of my old friends that are going to be dying soon (or ending the mission) and see Elder Campos, my friend from Bolivia and Elder Hess. It is so awesome to see these guys and I am so grateful to serve with them .

This week we had an awesome opportunity to find a family who really wants to change. It was really a huge blessing because the wife was an old contact in the street. We were visiting an investigador and we asked who else we could teach. And he showed us to his neighbor. And the even better part is that both of these people own restaurants so sometimes we get free food!  But anyway, this family that we found has such a desire to find the truth. We left them the assignment to read about the Plan of Salvation and when we came back they had read and they asked us "So what really happens to us after we die?"  That was fun to answer. They aren't married but I am so grateful to see their real desires to change. They came to church and and are excited to continue learning. 

Just before I end, I would like to quote something the Mission President's wife said:  "We all know that we will have the opportunity to be celestial beings in the next life, but would you like to be celestial beings now?"  And the way we do that is by abandoning all of our sins and changing all the things we need to change by repenting.  And it is such a great joy that fills our lives when we do. 

I love you guys, have a great day

Elder Parson

Elder Campos

The Zone Having Dinner

Neiva, Colombia

Neiva, Colombia

Monday, May 15, 2017

E-mail Week 43: May 15, 2017.

Well, this week was obviously the best, because I got to call my beautiful mother and family! It was so awesome to be able to talk to you guys. I LOVE YOU SO MUCH

Entonces, this week was pretty interesting.  We have been working pretty hard to get a lot of people married and baptized these past few weeks and this week basically half of them decided to stop listening. That was kinda hard but it is good that now we have the opportunity to find some more people. So this week we have been looking for a lot of people to teach. It was pretty awesome.  One day, a member bought us arepas.  

So we went to eat arepas late at night and we were able to talk to the shop owners and share a quick message. Then a day later, we had a lesson with them and were able to place a baptismal date with him. It was awesome to see how humbly he accepted the date--that it was just a way to change his life. That is our goal on the mission, to find people that are ready now to change and to allow the Gospel of Jesus Christ to influence their lives.

I know this may sound random, but for some reason it just clicked with me about what our mission is. I would often get frustrated when we couldn't find people, when people didn't come to Church and when people didn't get baptized.  I would get really  depressed.  But then I realized that my job is to invite as many people to Christ as possible in this short time of two years. My purpose is to be as persistent as possible to help people change their lives and to live God's commandments in my life. If I am doing this, I am successful. So now, if we have the appointments falling through, or if no one wants to listen to us, I am happy to find the one person who really needs the gospel in their lives. God respects agency, but when we use our agency to follow His plan, that is when He rejoices with us. 

Thank you for your prayers.  I can really feel them lifting me up in my times of need.  I hope you all have a great day and especially the Moms, to remember the important and sacred opportunity that you have to raise your kids. You really are what shapes our lives. Thank you for your amazing examples.

Les amo, que esten bien

Elder Parson

Monday, May 8, 2017

E-mail Week 42: May 8, 2017. Following the Spirit....

This email will be really short, honestly because I don't remember what happened. This week has just gone way too fast. So this week we have been trying to visit a lot of members.  The Ward has been losing a lot of people and so we are trying to help them. It was awesome.  More people are coming to church and we are trying to have activities every week. This week we are having a trompo tournament, which is like a version of yo yo here. I have no idea how to play but I am hoping to learn.

Also, we had an interesting experience.  We were just walking to an appointment when I felt the need to visit one of our investigators. She lived kinda far but we went and visited her and she was so happy.  She told us that she had had problems with her husband and was going to make some rash decisions. She said it was a miracle that we came.  That has been the greatest blessing to me in the mission--being guided by the spirit to bless other peoples' lives.  I know that when we follow the spirit, when we have the courage to follow His promptings, we can follow the plan of God more closely. 

This week has been good for investigators.  We have some awesome families, but as always the problem is marriage.  But if they have a testimony of the gospel, I know that one day, they will be able to be baptized.

Thank you for all your prayers, I definitely feel them.  When I am tired or discouraged, I always feel an uplifting hand.  I hope you have a fantastic week.

Love you all.
sigue en el camino del Evangelio

Elder Parson

Elder Hoopes before his transfer.

Elder Hess before his transfer.

Happy Birthday to our Zone Leader.

Some cows randomly walking down the street.


Monday, May 1, 2017

E-mail Week 41: May 1, 2017. Luz Estela's Child, Call to be DL

How is everyone doing?  This week has been a very rewarding week. We were able to see many blessings. But to start off, first an awesome experience.
Colombians are very particular about their meat and all the different departments have different meat. And here, they cook the meat in huge ovens, about 8 to 10 feet wide, that look like pizza ovens. These ovens are made out of mud and my companion and I had the opportunity to help make these ovens which was awesome.  And then for the first time, this guy came to church with his wife and family.  It was so cool because he said:  "I have never had much faith and I decided to listen to the missionaries to see if it could really help my family.  And just this morning, after getting ready for church, work started coming in for me."  He is a motorcycle mechanic and so there isn't a whole lot of work and his family needed food.  It is amazing to see that when we put the Lord first, blessings come.

Also, this week we had a really neat experience with Luz Estela's kids.  As we were coming to church yesterday, one of them ran up to me and said, "I want to get baptized now, like in this very moment, now.  And I want to be a missionary."  That was such a sweet, tender experience for me.  Really the gospel will change all behavior and all lives. 

Some new changes.  Yesterday I received the call to be district leader.  I am excited to learn from the amazing experiences that will come from this and am excited to serve the missionaries in my district. 

I hope you guys have a great week and remember how much God loves you.


Elder Parson