Monday, March 19, 2018

Mon., 3/19/2018 (Loma Plata)

We had another fast week here in Loma Plata, and finally without rain. I'll just go over a few of the highlights.

The past few weeks we have been looking for a new house/chapel for Loma Plata, that is better quality/location, and we found a place and are working out the details with the landlords! It is going to be 100 times better than the current house! We had interviews with Pte Evans in Abundancia, which are always good. We got the house that we want to move into approved with help from Pte Colman from the District, so hopefully we can get everything worked out with the landlords.

We did have a good morning on Sunday; we had ELEVEN people in church! That doubles last week's number. Thinks are looking up here in Loma Plata. Having a chapel in the center of the city--as we are planning to have--will help even more.

Today for Pday we played some soccer and football with the rest of the district. I can't remember if I had told y'all, but Elder Garrett is going to college on a full ride to play soccer. Kind of cool right!

I also learned a lot about prayer this week. We are told to always pray (2 Nephi 32:9), and it's for a reason. Many people think prayers are just a custom and don't actually do anything, but I know that they do do something. In the past week, year and a half, and honestly in my whole life I have seen the power of prayer. From finding misplaced keys, phones or other personal items, to making crucial life decisions, prayer is always an answer and a way for us to receive help and blessings from our loving Heavenly Father.

Thanks for the letters; it's nice to always have something to read on Mondays and know how y'all all are. I love you!


1 Eating pizza with the Neuland elders and Pte. Carlos and Romi Colman and Elder Garrett.

2 With Elder Garrett

3 It rained a little.

4 Sunset in LP.

5 As I've said a few times, it rained a lot recently!

6 We still cook all of our food every meal every day!

7 This family has a valid excuse for not coming out to talk.

8 The streets here all flooded.

Monday, March 12, 2018

Mon., 3/12/2018 (Loma Plata)

It has been another fast week in Loma Plata! It's kind of like the time flies here. Sorry, once again I can't send pictures, we are writing from a hotel computer and the cable port broke. So for the week:

We were hammered with rain here in the Chaco once again. From what I've heard, some of the rainfall records here have been broken. In some areas of the Chaco close to us, there has been a good amount of church and government aid, as the flooding has been pretty bad. In Loma Plata we didn't have terrible flooding; juts a lot of rain. It gets pretty muddy here when it rains, so the few people that we have been able to talk to use that as a bit of an excuse. We have recently hit a few dead ends and hadn't known what to do in this area, so we called up one of the missionaries that opened up Loma Plata to ask for some people that he used to visit. We plan on visiting them this week, as well as a loooooooooooooot of contacting. For various reasons we have had to drop almost all of the investigators that we had, so it will be a really different week. Elder Garrett and I have been getting along really well, which is good. In church on Sunday we had 6 people (7 but one left early), which is better than past weeks but we hope to have many more this week!

So most mission houses have a few old Liahona/Ensign  magazines laying around which we read sometimes during studies. Here is a talk that I found this week that I liked; it's written about marriage but I think family relationships such as children and parents are also benefited by reading it:

I love you all and hope you have a good week!

Monday, March 5, 2018

Mon., 3/5/2018 (Loma Plata)

Well I have to keep it short as we don't have much time and it's a little late. We had a bit of a slow week this week, with a lot of rain. I can't send pictures today, but believe me it rained a LOOOOOT. Like everyday all day all week. Apparently the elders in Neuland spent half the week wading in WAIST DEEP water! We didn't have thaaaaat much but let it suffice that it rained a lot. Sunday we only had the 2 of us (Elder Garrett and I) in church, as the mud in the streets was too deep for anyone to come. Elder Garrett is the world's next piano prodigy. I've been teaching him there by there and so he played in church (I sang by myself hahahaha). As a result, we didn't have too much success, but we did have a good amount of time to get to know each other and talk. The weather here will never cease to surprise me. In other news, a worker came to fix the shower, so we now have one! That was a blessing. Elder Garrett has been a dope companion so far; he is a really good teacher and doesn't let the weather ruin the fun! We are hoping for a much more successful (and maybe a liiiiiittle drier) week this week! I'd like to end with a quote: "Never is a man taller than when he's on his knees." Don't forget to say your prayers; God is listening! I hope y'all have a a good week!

Monday, February 26, 2018

Mon., 2/26/2018 (Neuland/Paraiso to Asuncion to Loma Plata)

Wow! Well we had a busy week! Here it is real quick: 

We had changes and I'm now in Loma Plata with Elder Garrett from Layton, Utah. He is 20 years old and has been in Paraguay 3 months longer than me. He has really good Spanish and works really hard. He also has a really big sense of humor! hahaha! There is never a dull moment.

We had to go to Asuncion Monday night when they had changes. Then we went to Trinidad (the Mission Assistants' area) to go contacting (tracting) for a couple days until Thursday, when Elder Allan F Packer from the Quorum of the 70 came. 6 of the 8 Zones in our mission got together for a conference. It was really great and we learned a lot about the Holy Ghost and how to have his help more in our lives. 

 After the conference we took a colectivo back to the Chaco. We then got a ride from Filadelfia with my suitcases with a Senior Missionary who was auditing (or something with money) to Loma Plata. Lomas Plata is similar to Neuland, in that it is a German colony here in Paraguay. Loma is bigger though; I think there are 25 to 30 thousand people, which is much larger than the 5 or 6 thousand in Neuland.

 We have a small apartment that is a room with a tiny kitchen and a tiny bathroom. The apartment is a building with 4 of the same size, and the other room on our side of the building is the chapel. Pretty close huh! We also have bikes here, so of the 5 (well Yby yau doesn't have bikes now but we did the 6 months I was there) areas here with bikes, I've been assigned to 3 of them! 

Loma Plata is huge though; and we have to go pretty far out to go to the store or other weekly/daily tasks. If you have any questions about the area, just send me an email! Loma Plata is still really close to Neuland so the climate and such are the same. Here we are just a group, not even a branch. Loma Plata is part of the Filadelfia branch. Elder Garrett is a the group leader. We had a solid 5 people, including us 2 in church. There is a member family, Fm Alvarez, that came to church. The church has only been here for 7 months, and there have only been 1 or 2 baptisms in the whole time it's been here, but we are excited to work and we'll be changing all that! Thanks for the emails and I hope y'all have a good week!


1 Elder Garrett and I on a bridge in Asuncion.

2 Elder Villacresses (the Assistant/former Zone Leader that I had a few divisions with) went home this change.

3 The kitchen in Loma Plata.

4 The house (door on the left) and chapel (door on the right) in Loma Plata.

5 Our chapel (right side).

6 our chapel part 2 (left side).

7 I now play the piano for church!

8 As you may have noted, our kitchen isn't big enough for 23 people so we cook in the bedroom. hahaha

9 Here's Elder Garrett.

10 We didn't have bread Sunday, so here's a pancake...

11 Piano lessons at lunch time! He can now play Joseph Smith's First Prayer and We Thank Thee O God For a Prophet on the piano! (with 1 finger)

12 Here's a better picture of Elder Garrett.

Monday, February 19, 2018

Mon., 2/19/2018 (Neuland/Paraiso)

It's been a busy week and I don't have much time! Here is the week in a short email!

Elder McEwan had his birthday Wednesday! I made him some puffed oven (German) pancakes to celebrate. After, Pte Carlos Colman and a native member went with us to meet a few members in a little town called Yacac'vash that is 50 km from Neuland. It was a good visit. There are a good number of members that live there, and they haven't had missionaries there in the 17 years they've lived there since they colonized it. Needless to say visiting a new area is pretty dope.

Friday we went out to Paraiso with the bikes. It was really a rainy week. We did a few visits in the afternoon.

Saturday early we got up and biked the 20 km to Yacac'vash. We had the people all get together and taught about the Restoration of the Gospel, using a LOT of pictures. They also love singing so we sang a lot of hymns. We had everyone go home for lunch, then we got them all to come back to teach the Plan of Salvation. As in 90% of our lessons, there was a language barrier, but with the help of a LOT of photos and the Spirit we were able to teach them all and they were so very grateful. These saints were baptized with their whole tribe in Mistolar in the 80's but haven't had much contact with the church for years. One of them, Guillermo, helped to translate for those that didn't understand. We then went back the 20 km to Paraiso on bike. Thankfully it was overcast, as the sandy trail was very humid. I have a few pictures of the salt stains on my clothes from sweating, but idk if I'll have time to send the pictures. A miracle happened on the way home though: Elder Hermansen called us early with our changes (he was supposed to call on Sunday evening, but called Friday afternoon) and said we had to come back to the city. At that point we were 5 km from Paraiso with LITERALLY NO SIGNAL. We had no idea how that call go through. We rushed to Paraiso where there is 1 bar of signal (in some places) and called our driver to pick us up. He wasn't able to until later, but changed his schedule and got to Paraiso around 8 pm. He came right in time, as the rain picked up and the roads were getting worse and worse. Thank goodness for 4 wheel drive! For those that know what mudding is, that's how the road is getting to Paraiso! So we also helped another truck get unstuck, and got home [Neuland] late! We were so tired.

Sunday it rained and at 9 only Arnildo and us missionaries were at church, so we had to start with only 3 people! Nicacio and 2 of his daughters came around 9:15 and so we did have 6 people! I presided and directed and gave a talk, and directed music, and Elder McEwan did the rest! After Sacrament Meeting we watched General Conference talks so that they could learn some! Nicacio and Arnildo love learning! The rest of Sunday we went and said goodbye to all the members here. It's hard saying goodbye, as I was here 5 changes, but I'm excited for my new area! To save time and money, they notified me of my new area Sunday, and I will be going tooooooooooooooooooooooooo... LOMA PLATA! It's another town here in the Chaco where there is just a group of a few members and the missionaries just opened up the area 7 months ago (the same time as when I moved to Neuland)! It's part of the Filadelfia branch. My new companion will be Elder Garrett from Utah, who has 3 months more than me in the mission! I'm really excited; I really like being in the Chaco. For those who don't remember, the Chaco is a big desert area (where it NEVER rains, but when it does, it does a LOT) which consists of the northwestern half of Paraguay. There are 8 missionaries here full time (and sometimes 2 sister missionaries) and one District, named after the Paraguayan state of Boqueron. It's basically a really cool place, and I'll be able to keep seeing Elder McEwan and maybe some of the people I know from Neuland! I'd like to share a small saying with yall from a song (I think its from the movie Prince of Egypt.) "There can be miracles...when you believe!" I know that is true because I've seen it in Neuland and all throughout my mission. We need faith and actions of obedience, and God will always help us! I hope y'all have a great week! Thanks for the emails! It's always nice to know how everyone is doing!


1 Saying bye to Hno Claudelino.

2 Some breakfast...

3 ...In bed! Happy birthday Elder McEwan!

4 Welcome to Yacac'vash!

5 With Guillermo and his family.

6 We got up at 4:30 a.m. to take a rattler to Fili to get a few things for our trip. We took the opportunity to sleep.

7 40 km of biking and all we saw was a tractor. On that road a hat is much better than a helmet for your protection.

8 With a few people from Yacac'vash! They're such humble people and were sooooooooooooo happy to see us! Like literally!

9 We found Arthur's long lost ranch in Paraguay!

10 "You salty" takes on a whole new meaning.


12 A little bit of Red White and Blue to color up yalls week

13 Your average temperature on sunny days. On rainy days it isn't as hot, it's just really humid and we walk through deep mud all day!

14 Ostrich sighting.

15 Literally in the middle of nowhere.

16 Cool rainbow in Paraiso.

Have a good week!

Monday, February 12, 2018

Mon., 2/12/2018 (Neuland/Paraiso)

Well it has been a busy week here for us in Neuland. I'm not really sure where the week went to be honest! Here are the highlights. I had a division with Elder Robinson (from Idaho), which was good but he was sick. Elder McEwan and I have been contacting (tracting) a lot recently, and I must say it hasn't been really successful overall, but we have met some very heartfelt people. It is hard when there are really only 2 churches here, and the other one's preacher says to your faces a few of the things he teaches, that are not true. That leads into my interview with President Evans. He asked me about the growth of my testimony of my mission. It was a moment to think deeply. I honestly would say, that my testimony of the truthfulness of the church and our message hasn't really grown as much, it's the testimony of why we need it and the falseness of everything else. For those that don't understand, it's sooooo important that we have a prophet. He is like a lighthouse during a storm on the ocean. If we don't see or take heed of the light, we don't know where to go. We know that we are in the last days and Christ will come. The prophets have said it and still do. The Book of Mormon and Bible testify of it. A couple of the people we talked to really strengthened my testimony of that. Well we had District Conference [ie like a Stake Conference but for the small branches]. As there is no money currently available in the District, the conference was to be broadcasted. Well it was raining, so they didn't have signal in Abundancia so long story short, we didn't watch the conference. There was however some big news! We have a new District President! I won't go into details but we missionaries shouted for joy. The former District Secretary, a man named Juan Gaona, is the new District President. He is going to do so much good for the District and the missionaries! We are hoping to have a good last week of this change. Next week we may have changes, but we never know who stays or goes until then! This week we will be going out to a community about 50 km from here called Yacac-vash that we have been trying to get to for a while, so that's kind of exciting. We also got 4 flat tires this week, that was fun!

That's pretty much all.  I hope y'all have a good week!


1 Out of the Neuland kitchen- Puffed oven (German) pancakes.

2 A little house cleaning.

3 Division with Elder Robinson from Blackfoot, Idaho.

4 It rained a little bit here, and I must say biking through mud is kind of fun!

5 Happy Birthday Elder McEwan! He got a package that Pte Evans brought up.

6 President Evans also brought me a package! Hahaha

7 That point where you-re so wet but so happy you don't even care.

8 Through rain, snow sleet or hail....... well I guess just rain here but we don't get stopped by anything!

9 Should I start sending weekly pics of new brown widows we find in the house (Question mark) There are so many!

10 We had a lesson with Fm Ortiz, which may have been the last time I'll see the dad (Brigido) because of his work. I have seen a huge change in his life and character by his conversion!

11 Starting new trends as usual!

12 Yes that is our assigned area in the mission. Not many people get to say they served ther mission in "Unknown territory!"

13 When you realize the rain isn't going to stop you just go back out and work.

14 same as 13

15 It was only around 5 or 6 inches deep.

16 Contacting the German side of town but... WHERE ARE THE PEOPLE? hahaha