Monday, January 27, 2014

Letter #35

Hey Family,
So, YES! I found out, and I will be getting transferred this week! I will find out Wednesday where I get to go, and next week I will email y'all my address. (so y'all can continue to send me wonderful letters) :P haha Of course I am sad to leave this area because I have so many good memories, and helped so many people here. However, I  know the Lord has a better plan for me right now, and I can't argue against that! haha 

That is the best to be able to go to the temple, like I told mom in one of my last letters; that is one of the first things I want to do when I get home from my mission! It is defiantly something to be in the temple, and especially feeling that there is a presence of that person you going through for is the best too! 

So the best week was this week! I have been on many exchanges teaching this guy named Ricardo Grimaldi! His wife was baptized last year and he just didn't quite accept the gospel yet. He was baptized on Saturday! It was super spiritual. The coolest part was it was Hermana Baers last week in the mission (like she goes home today) and he got baptized this week so she could witness him get baptized. We planned this one so well. The wife really wanted a temple marriage, and has been talking to him all the time about it. He knew that he needed to get baptized if he wanted to be with his wife forever! So we did so much to help them out and I have taught him a couple of times. He loves the missionaries. I was able to stand in the circle when he received the Holy Ghost. The thing that got me the most is we planned to sing Family's can be Together Forever, I was crying in the middle of the song, and then he and his wife cried. Everyone in the room cried and the spirit was sooooooooooooooo strong. It was sweet because he had family that are not yet members there so that will be good for them! It was an amazing experience for him to get baptized! Man I love Baptisms!!!!! The best moments on the mission!
Have fun! Love y'all
Con amor, (with love)
Elder Andersen

Monday, January 20, 2014

Letter #34

(I have added my dad's comments to Elder Andersen in RED so you can know what he is referring to)

Hey Family!
Dad,that is a super sweet quote.(“It is difficult to find anything more healthy to drink than good cold water, such as flows down to us from springs and snows of our mountains. This is the beverage we should drink. It should be our drink at all times.”)  I remember being at the Menedez' house this week and they asked if we wanted soda or something else to drink. I said water please, and then they insisted that we could take something else. I said that I want to go on a diet, and Sister Menedez said ok fine and gave us water. 
The Hispanics are out to get me even bigger than I already am! They give us so much food!! Hearing about what mom cooks the missionary's back home makes me a little jealous! :p haha I do like the food here, but don't get me wrong, mom's cooking is always the best!!!!

(Wednesday evening was very nice though. We had the missionaries over for dinner -- both the English and Laotian. One of the elders (Rivas from New Jersey) told about being a convert at age 17. He had been rather active in the Catholic church and even helped the priests. A friend invited him to our church and he attended for some time until he decided that he needed to be baptized. He had to talk his mom into signing the permission slip. On his baptism, he had to walk 45 minutes to the stake center because his family didn't go to the service. It was very interesting to hear his story. His family is still non-member but he continues to write to them and pray for them. We hope that he will be blessed by their conversion when he returns home.)

That story you shared is sweet. I might have to tell that to some
investigators so that they have some "ganas"(I don't know the word in
English, it is kinda like oomph) to be baptized. That is a super sweet
thing, we have had some people in the branch not go to their own

So this week was a little crazy Yesterday we came out of our car
and we were about to go in the apartment and these "morenos" (black people, I say "morenos" cause its not racist here) They are Pentecostal and they called us over and we ended up talking for them for 40 min, well more like arguing for awhile! So everything they were saying to Elder Bushman and I brought everything back to what they said with scriptures just in the bible! They would go onto different subjects and bring different questions but we just destroyed them with our knowledge. One of the things they talk about was that the trinity was one person. We brought them so many different verses and showed them so much but they just didn't understand. The thing that irritated me the most was they said that we just had to believe in Christ and we are saved, and that it is not in our actions! Of course we showed them James 1:5 ( If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all men liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.) He made something up and we
just said look man the only way we can make it to Heaven is through
faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the holy ghost, and
enduring to the end. Then he went off on this tangent about how what we were telling him was not true. I really wanted to fight him, finally we left before I got myself anymore upset with this guy! I spoke some Spanish to him and Elder Bushman had to shut him up but it didn't work! We just eventually left! I hope he finds the truth somehow!! haha We were also able to have some super sweet lessons with some other investigators, so hopefully we can see things pick up!
Love y'all and keep up the good work!

Love y'all,
Elder Andersen

Monday, January 13, 2014

Letter # 33

Hola Famila,
Pues porque papa empieza su carta en espanol yo necesito hacer el
mismo. Gracias por todas cartas que me enviaron. me ayuda mucha este
semana porque este semana fue muy estressando y muy duro y todo. pero
horita estoy contento con todos bendicions que mi padre celestial me
ha dado.

Here's the translation for the first paragraph:
"Well, because Dad started his letter in Spanish, I need to do the same. 
Thanks for all the letters that you have sent me.  They helped me a lot this
week because this week was very stressing and very hard and all.  But
right now I am content with all the blessings that my Father in Heaven has
given me."

My spelling in Spanish isn't as good, it's just like my English. haha! Like I
said this week was a little hard because Elder Bushman was sick for 2 days! 
We couldn't go out and I felt like we have done nothing this week.  So the
devil is getting to me and telling me I'm not doing enough! But this week
will change; we got some Hispanic home remedies for his sickness and he is feeling a lot
better. Haha.

This week was cool because we had out quarterly Mission President
interviews. When we talked and he asked, "How is your Spanish coming?"
and I said, "Pretty good; I can talk to everyone. Of course, I have a lot
to learn but I am pretty good." Then he is like, "So pretty much you are
going to train." And my eyes got big and was like whaaaattt?!?! And then
he asked me...  "If your companion got hit by a train would you be able to
train new missionaries?" And I was like, "Yeah, I would be able to. I just
feel like I'm super young. Normally missionaries don't train until they are
over a year in the mission; so that is why I'm like holy why so soon!" He didn't
specify when, but he said I will train soon. So that will be a big
responsibility! I am excited to do it. When I am with younger missionaries,
 I do better with speaking Spanish anyway!! :p

Cool story:
So the Hispanics don't celebrate Christmas (very sad huh?). They celebrate
Dia de los Magos or Day of the Wise Men. That is when the wise men visited Jesus.
It is always January 6th, so this year we went to the Amezquitas
house for it because they invited us over. We learned about a new tradition; 
they have this big circle bread (see picture below) and they have 3 little plastic 
babies baked into the bread. When you are eating the bread, if you get one of the
 babies in your piece you have to pay for this feast that they do on February 2nd.
Of course they included us, they made the missionaries do it! Luckily I didn't get the baby
Jesus. So whenever someone gets it, they start screaming and become upset because
they have to pay for part of the party! HAHA! The bread was really good!!
After, we shared the manger scene with them. We told them about the wise men
that came and adored the baby Jesus. It was sweet to be able to show them
the story, so they could see where their tradition kinda comes from.

I love ya'll and keep up all your good work :)
Love Elder Andersen

Monday, January 6, 2014

Letter #32

Hey family,

I'm glad to hear y'all had so much fun out there in Salt Lake and back
at home too! Please tell Omar and Victor I said, "Como estan chamacos." 
(they should laugh) chamacos means kids in Mexico. I miss them :p And yeah,
our church starts with Sunday School, then we split to Priesthood and
Relief Society, then we have Sacrament Meeting at the end!! Ours starts at
1:40! So yesterday was horrible cause it was Fast Sunday and I almost
died!!! I fasted for about 27 hours!! Haha, I know that the Lord will bless me even that much more.

This week has been a lot better than the last couple of weeks. We had
a lot more lessons and we had a couple investigators at
church too! This had been a big blessing. We are really working with this
family The Penillas. Brother Penillas has been watching the Discovery channel and
it has really changed him to believe that there is no God. We have
been working with him so much -- the funny thing is that his wife is a
firm believer and she knows there has to be a God! So it's pretty
opposite with them. He is a less active and she loves the church; we
are really trying to work with them. We feel like they are close but
there is just this one last thing we don't know about. I told him what
he has to do to find if there is a God. I just told him straight up,
that we visit him to help him out to find if there is a God or not,
either we are out here wasting our time on helping people and there
is no God, or what we teach is true. He told me a joke about his
job and I turned that joke to him. He is a welder and he said he faked
it till he made it. I told him that when I grew up in the church, I
faked it till i made it (or till I found out that it's true) that the
more we put our faith in things, the better things come to us. And I
told him even if this is all a fake, I rather be a good person in this
world that people can look at and say he helped a lot of people and he
was a firm believer. I hope that really helped him out.

Miracle this week:
Many of you know I had some bowel movement problems and when I was
taking all the medicine they told me to take, it wasn't helping at all --
It seemed to make it worse actually! After complaining about it one night,
Elder Preece told me that I should get a blessing. I was like how
did I not think of that before?!? So the next day I woke up, went to
the bathroom and that was the worst it ever hurt and I cried because the
pain was really bad! I came out and asked for a blessing and Elder
Preece gave me that blessing and by the end of the blessing, it didn't
hurt and by the end of the day, it was all gone. -- There was no pain when
I went to the bathroom and it just magically disappeared (I have had this
problem the last month or so). I have a strong testimony that
Priesthood blessings are real and they really work. That if we put our
faith in the Lord, miracles really do happen! Jesus wants to heal
us all but we can only receive that help if we do all we can just like
in 2 Nephi 25:23. After we do all we can, we can receive grace or that
healing that we need!

I love y'all so much!!!

Love Elder Andersen

This picture is of Acirema Malacara. She was baptized by Elder
Bushman and I confirmed her in Sacrament meeting. She is a member and
her dad wanted us to perform it.