Thursday, December 31, 2015

Week #79

[It was wonderful to visit with Wesley on Christmas day. He is so happy. My phone ran out of storage right before he ended. I think I only missed 10 seconds of it though]

Hola Familia!

Christmas was great and the greatest part was talking to everyone! I miss you all so much, but there is nowhere else in the entire world where I´d rather be. Today is the last day of the year 2015 and it´s weird to think that I´ve been away from home for an actual year. Thinking of this year, I can honestly say that this year has been the greatest of my entire life. I have grown up more, I have become closer to my Savior, and I have strengthened my life more in the year 2015 than any other year in my life. This year has literally changed my eternities and I´m extremely grateful for it.

We had transfers this past week and I had a big Deja vu. Just so I can explain a little about how President Cifuentes does transfers. He told us that for the past 4 transfers, he has prayed to know with which companion we should be. He wasn´t really worried about the area, just focused on the companionships. I served with Elder Brown in General Cerri, and with Elder Dement and Elder Paleka in General Arias. This transfer, President Cifuentes told us that he prayed to know in which area we should serve in. He wasn´t as focused on the companionships, but more on where we should be serving. It was a surprise to hear the transfer calls this past week. I was called to serve in General Cerri with Elder Dement. That´s why it has been a Deja Vu. I´m so excited because there definitely a reason why Elder Dement and I are together again serving in Cerri.

It has been a great blessing to be with Elder Dement because he knows how to work and he works HARD. I love working with him because we see so many miracles. Just these past two days, we have found some great people that truly need the gospel in their lives. On Tuesday we spoke with a woman named María and her son Agustin. (I spoke with her husband a lot when I was in Cerri before, but never on them). They showed a lot of interest and we visited them yesterday. We sat down in their backyard and we asked María if she had read the pamphlet on the Restoration. She said yes and she said she had a lot of interest in Joseph Smith and she wanted to learn more. haha that´s something that two full time missionaries can help her with. We taught her the restoration. The Spirit gave us the words to say and we already had great unity (Elder Dement and I have already taught together many times). The Spirit was so strong that tears came to her eyes and she told us, "I just want to learn more." She accepted a baptismal date and she said the closing prayer. We could feel the María´s sincere desires to follow Jesus Christ. It was only one of the first days in Cerri, and we´re seeing so many miracles and blessings from our Heavenly Father.

I hope everyone has a great new years! I hope all is well! Thanks for all the love and support.

Love, Elder Bosco II
Bahía Blanca Zone!

 Downtown Bahía with 200 missionaries

Downtown Bahía Christmas Day!

Elder Dement! I found out that he lives in the McAllen, Texas Mission. He lives in a city called Portland, Texas.

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Week #78

Hola (Aloha) Familia!

I´m glad I´m on the mission and I don´t have to worry about the stress of BYU losses hahaha. This week was a great week and it´s getting hotter and hotter. The funny thing is, Santa Clause in Argentina still has a suit with a big white beard, I´m not sure how he doesn´t die of heat.

We had a baptism this week. Luciano De Ipola is 9 years old and he made the decision to get baptized. So that you guys understand the situation of his family, His mom served a mission some years ago and became less active afterwards. 6 years ago, the Bishop of the ward got to know them and Sis. De Ipola started to come to Church again with her two kids, Luciano and Leandro. Her husband even accepted the gospel and got baptized, but sadly is less active in this moment. Sis. De Ipola stays strong in the Church and her two kids come every Sunday. They are great little kids and they have strong testimonies of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Sis. De Ipola truly wanted Luciano to understand the importance of a covenant with the Lord before baptism. For that reason, he didn´t get baptized until yesterday. We have been teaching him about baptism and the Savior, but the truth is, he already had a strong testimony from the great examples of his parents and what he has learned in Primary. He was extremely excited to get baptized and super prepared. He´ll be a great missionary one day.

We had a great experience with Flor this week. We taught her the Plan of Salvation in a period of 5 lessons. We explained the doctrine and principles with a lot of simpleness and clarity. And the truth is, the Spirit has been able to help her learn and understand everything. On Saturday, we finished teaching the Kingdoms of Glory and Flor started to cry. The room was filled with silence. She began to share stories with us on how she became to know that God exists and how she recognized us as representatives of Jesus Christ. She told us that she truly needs the gospel in her life. She looked at us and asked us if there are commandments that she doesn´t know that she can live. We happily told her yes and we invited her to pray to know that the Plan of Happiness is true. We kneeled down and she sincerely asked Heavenly Father for forgiveness of her sins. I was filled with the Spirit of joy and happiness knowing that the Spirit had truly touched her heart.

What I learned from Flor is a lesson of a lifetime. How often do we ask ourselves if there are MORE commandments that we can live to become closer to our Heavenly Father. There are many ways that we can live a commandment more fully or that we can consecrate ourselves to this great work. This is the work of the Lord and it´s only through the commandments of Him that we can return to live in the Celestial Kingdom and become exalted. I love the Plan of Salvation and I know that it is real.

Thanks for all the love and support. I´ll see you on Christmas Day!! Love you!

Love Elder Bosco II

 Luciano De Ipola´s baptism! A picture of his family

 a picture with me and Elder Paleka

Monday, December 14, 2015

Week #77

Hola Familia!

I hope you have a great time in Hawaii. I´m with an Hawaiian everyday so I guess it´s close to the same haha. This week we had our ward Christmas Party and we took part in the nativity scene. It was a great spiritual experience and we felt like a big family. I seriously love the ward that I´m in. The day I have to leave I will miss them a lot.

The Menendez Family, Axel, and Flor all came to the Ward Party on Saturday. As we sat eating the dinner, I felt a warm feeling from the Spirit. This is what it´s all about- to be with a big family. I gained a big testimony on the importance of unity within a ward. If the prophets tell us that we have the most success being raised up in a home that is based off of principles of the gospel such as love, charity, and faith, the same goes for a ward family. It is a lot easier for investigators, new converts, and members to live the gospel and to love the gospel when they feel love, charity, and unity in a ward. It´s one of the many reasons why Jesus Christ organized the Church the way He did. I have a testimony of the importance of being part of a family.
Now that I think about it, that´s where most of my happiness comes from on the mission. Knowing that I´m pleasing my Father in Heaven, my brother Jesus Christ, and my earthy family. Being part of a family and helping others feel the same why is a priceless feeling. I´ve seen it with so many investigators and converts. When they realize the love that takes place in the Church of Jesus Christ, they open up and start to follow their Savior with more willingness. This Christmas I hope that everyone can feel the love of the Savior by being part of a big family.

This is the message that we share with the world. We were a big family before this life and God´s plan is that we can all return to His presence and be a big family again. That is the reason why we do the things that we do as members. That is why we do temple work, and that is why we preach the gospel all over the world. Our Heavenly Father wants us to return to His presence and to live in peace. I can only imagine that happiness we will be able to feel when we can already feel so much love as part of a family here on this earth.

Thanks for all the love and support. I´m so blessed to have the greatest family in the world! I love you all!

Love Elder Bosco II

We ran to the Olimpo (Soccer Club in Bahía) Stadium in the morning

 Zone P-Day

Our Christmas decorations 
The nativity!

(From left to right) Elder Valle, Rodrigo Angulo, Me, Elder Paleka, Hno. Rossell 

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week #76

Hola Familia!

What a week! MARILU GOT BAPTIZED!! I can´t even tell you how happy I am. It was an incredible experience. It was so powerful. I think it was so great because we have been teaching them for a few months now and we´ve been able to see their progress. We were able to witness their wedding and we´ve been able to see many changes that have taken place from the Spirit of the Lord. She was extremely happy and ready to take this step in her life. The best part is that she made the decision to be an example to her family. Omar, her husband, was telling us during the interview that he has a goal to have an eternal family. He has the goal to baptize his two sons. He´s extremely close to enter into the waters of baptism. We need a lot of prayers for him and his family so that the Spirit can touch their hearts as it has touched the heart of Marilu. If you could, please keep in your prayers Omar, Marilu, Celeste (19), Johanna (17), Lucas (12), and Jonathan (10). It was the prayers of so many that helped Marilu make the decision to be baptized and I know it will be the same for the rest of her family. I have so much faith in prayers. Without a doubt, God answers our prayers. 

The entire Menendez Family came to church and stayed the entire time. It was a big step of progress and I was extremely happy! The ward here in General Arias is awesome. It´s growing so much. Our gospel principles class with new members and investigators is growing in number each week. We had to move to a new room with more space and two fans- because it was getting pretty hot in the other room and a bit claustrophobic haha. The numbers in the ward are growing and we´re seeing so many miracles. I´ve never had so much unity with the members and the other missionaries in our ward. We are having a blast and we´re seeing so many miracles. Without a doubt, Bahía Blanca will have a temple in the near future. 

Another great experience was with the other baptism that took place on Saturday. Elder Valle and Elder Price baptized a man named Favio Rossi. He is a Jewish descendant and because of that, he was kept some of the beliefs and traditions of the Jews. He has spent many years changing from Church to Church and has never felt like he belonged. When he talked with the missionaries, he had interest and he began to read the Book of Mormon. The Book of Mormon made all of the difference. Just like it says in 2 Nephi 9:1-3 and 2 Nephi 30:7, the descendents of the jews will start to believe in the words of the Book of Mormon. Even though Favio has always believed in Jesus Christ, he had to change his beliefs about the day of the Sabbath Day. He believed and lived it on Saturday, and now on Saturday. I was able to interview him and it was a great testimony to me that the prophecies in the Book of Mormon are true. It was incredible to see the conversion of Favio and the Spirit that I felt as he bore his testimony yesterday was powerful. My testimony grew concerning the power that the Book of Mormon has in converting us to the truth.

Thanks for all the love and support. I´m so blessed to be a missionary of Jesus Christ in the last days. The Lord´s hand is in EVERY part of this great work. Please keep the Menendez Family in your prayers so that they can keep progressing. Thanks for everything.

Love, Elder Bosco II
 Marilu´s baptism!!!!

 The Menendez Family after Marilu´s baptism!!
 A little Hawaiian spin the the baptism haha
 It was a great baptismal service!
 Favio Rossi, the baptism of the Elder Valle and Elder Price
Our little celebration


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Week #75

Hola Familia!

I´m a little confused about the primary letters you want me to send. When do you want me to send them, and to who? My ponderize scripture this week is 2 Nephi 33:10-11. I only have my scriptures in Spanish with me, so I can´t write it, but I love this testimony by Nephi. He testifies with all of his heart that the Book of Mormon testifies of Jesus Christ and that they are actually the words of Jesus Christ. There are many people who say they believe in Jesus Christ and don´t accept the Book of Mormon. That´s not possible. It´s only possible to have a true and everlasting testimony of our Savior by reading, pondering, and loving the Book of Mormon.

This week was unbelievable and FULL of miracles. I would like to share two with you guys. The first one happened last week. I was studying in Preach My Gospel about Finding People to Teach. It teaches us that we must pray that the Lord will guide us to the people that are looking for the truth and we must also pray that the Lord guide these people to us. I thought about those suggestions and I decided to put it in better practice. As we left the apartment that day, I remember specifically praying for someone to come to us that was looking for the truth. It was a simple pray, but I truly wanted to put my trust more fully in the Lord. We walked a few blocks and we were waiting in a bus stop. We were waiting for the bus for about 3 minutes and a car passed us, turned the corner and stopped. The man got out of his car and walked towards us. He had a catholic necklace on and he asked us if we were Mormons. We said yes and he said, "Perfect, I have a family for you guys that you need to visit and teach." At this point the bus had arrived. The man wrote the direction of the family´s home in our agenda and left. We got on the bus and I was in Aw. Had the Lord actually answered my prayer so quickly? It was a miracle right before my eyes. I thanked the Lord for what He had blessed us with. The direction to the family´s home wasn´t in our area so we passed the referral to other missionaries. I have no idea what happened with this family yet, but I know without a doubt that the Lord knows them and is watching out for them.

The other miracle happened with MariLu Menendez! We have been praying and praying for MariLu because she is so prepared but she wants to get baptized with her family. Her family still needs more preparation. She came by herself this Sunday to Church and it was the Primary Program. The program was incredible. The children talked a lot about baptism and the importance of the baptismal covenant in God´s Plan. Afterwards, in the Gospel Principles class, we talked about Eternal Marriage. The Spirit was incredible as we talked about temples and the blessings of temples. I remembered thinking in that class the thought that came to my mind. It came to my mind about 3 times. I thought, invite MariLu to baptism again after the class for the 5th of December. The thought came to my mind more than once, so I was determined to do it again. The class ended, we exited the room and I walked up to MariLu in the hallway, I asked her how the class was and she answered me by saying. "I´m going to get baptized this Saturday." I couldn´t believe what she had just said to me. I didn´t even have to invite her, the Spirit did it for me. I was filled with happiness, I can´t even explain it! I told some of the members and they were just as happy! I´m so excited for this weekend. Please keep MariLu in your prayers!

Thanks for all the love and support! I appreciate all the prayers in my behalf. I´m truly blessed to have so much love and support in my life!

Love, Elder Bosco II