Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Argentina - Pergamino, Centenario #34

From: Amanda Gibbons

Date: Mon, Sep 27, 2010 at 7:56 AM

Subject: Hey Hey!!

To: Bonnie Gibbons

So...what can i say. The weather here is crazy! I never know what to wear, the day will start out with sun and halfway through its raining and freezing or visa versa! But hey, that's the mission for ya! It's kinda like a game everyday to see if we are prepared or not, or over prepared! Ha. Well this ward has a ton of less-active members, like over 200, so we have got a lot of work cut out for us. We actually found a member knocking doors. There is no information on her here, but we went into her house and started talking. We had no idea she was a member until she showed us a picture of her sons wedding in front of the Buenos Aries temple! Ha, so we started to ask her question and she stopped going to church because one of the members told her she reads really slow and sloppy! Poor girl only went to school up until 3rd grade. Well she hadn't been to church in a good 20 years, so we basically had to reteach her everything, even how to pray. She was really excited we came and invited us to come back! I hope we can help her remember her covenant she made with God and that she will be able to be sealed to her children!

We also started teaching this young boy, 17, named Gaston. He is amazing!! Seriously, he lives in a crazy house where his mom just tells everyone basically that they are dirt. He has read everything we and the elders have given him and he prays like he has done it his whole life! The last lesson we taught, the house was crazy, kids running around, music, mom yelling, phone ringing and I had a coughing attack, but he was so engrossed in what we were saying, it was like we were the only 3 people in the room! He is searching for the true and wants to know for himself if its true. We asked him if he wants to be baptized and he said NO, i need to go to church and pray with more faith before i can say yes for sure! He's taking this very seriously and i love it! He didn't come to church this Sunday. Bishop went to go get him, but no one answered the door. If you could put his name in your prayers or the temple that would be amazing (Gaston Aguirre).

Also, Sergio, this amazing man who is still waiting on his divorcement papers. He really acts like he has been a member all his life. The lesson this Sunday was on keeping the sabbath day holy. I asked him what he likes to do with his family and he said a few things they do and then he said, i really need to organize my week, so that i can actually keep the sabbath day the way the Lord wants me to. He said he was going to start trying to do things other days of the week or plan his Saturdays better! Wow, that's something that I have never done before in my life, organize my Saturday to dedicate all my time to the Lord on Sundays! He also shared the most awesome analogy. He is an Electric Engineer, or the guys that work with computers and smaller equipment. He said i love how computers are like the gospel. They look cool from the outside and we can see that they work. But once you actually put one together and understand how it works, it becomes something beautiful and meaningful in your life! When we apply the gospel into our lives we can see the beauty and the joy that comes from it, and the suffering and pain when we don't do what right or we don't clean out the viruses.

I am trying to be a better missionary. In Jacob 4:12

And now, beloved, marvel not that I tell you these things; for why not speak of the atonement of Christ,

and attain to a perfect knowledge of him, as to attain to the knowledge of a resurrection and the world to come?

We should always talk about Christ and his gospel. You will be amazed at how you can apply it to EVERY aspect of your life. If you do this you will receive the blessing in this scripture, obtain a perfect knowledge of things! To better understand your purpose here and what God has in store for you! I love you all and thank you for your support and your prayers! They are heard and are helping! Have a great week, Keep the Faith.

Love Hermana Gibbons

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Argentina - Pergamino, Centenario #33

From: Amanda Gibbons

Date: Mon, 20 Sep 2010 14:36:23 -0300

Subject: Pergamino, Centenario

Hey Family!

Wow I never realizad how much I love not being in a city! Haha, ok so I did love the people in Rosario. Our bishop was so young and so willing and excited to work! I also loved our Mission Leader, Nefi. He was always there to help us and took care of us whenever anything happened! Fabian Lopez got baptized on Saturday and the Elders said he was super excited and his whole family came! I was really worried because to be baptized is a big change in someones life and to just have two new people you’ve never met come and help you with the rest would be a little scary. But that’s why I love the Holy Ghost. It doesn’t matter if i was there or not, Fabian felt the spirit and knows without a doubt that this is the correct thing to do. He can hear the message from a different mouth, and still feel the love of the Savior for him. I am so grateful I had the oppourtunity to meet him. I am trying to send a picture of him right now. Hopefully it works!

So first off…I LOVE PERGAMINO! It is so beautiful. Its not nearly as small as Santa Elena, but there are still a ton of fields and there are no building taller than 2 stories. The people are really welcoming and loving. Our first lunch was with the family Carrasco, and alter 2min in their house, i felt like I was sitting across one of my uncles making fun of me! I loved being in their home, feeling the comforting effects of the spirit! Our ward consists of like 200 people, but we have about 30 people that actually come every Sunday. It’s small, but all of the memebers are so willing to help us. Our Bishop was married 1 ½ ago and was called to be bishop 6 months ago. Apparently we had no leadership in this ward for a while until about 2 months ago. Bishop has no counselors, but wants to do all he can to help his ward. He has so many visions and goals, I am so excited to be a part of this work!

There is an investigador here named Sergio and I think I got more of the lesson then he did. He already is a wonder with the scriptures and he just has the grand Desire to learn more and to help everyone else in the process. He wants to get baptized, but he needs to relieve the papers from his divorce still. There are some problems with them, but he is working with one of the area 70’s to get it all worked out. Please pray that they will be able to work this out. He is going to be a stong leader in the church someday, i can’t wait to see what he will do for this ward.

Our appartment here is really huge! Its two stories and we put all the beds upstairs so the four of us sleep in the same room. The owner of the apartment lives right next to us and she’s really sweet and a little crazy. She is really excited we are girls, so we can be the daughters she never had. She too is listening to the lessons. I love this work, its pretty hard to start in an area where neither of us know where to go or who has been listening, but we are putting our trust in the lord and just go out and work! I love bearing my testimony at every min. that I can. I feel that the lord has given me strength to be a stronger teacher, or at least I am better at telling people that they are wrong, in a loving way J If anything I have learned is that we need to fulfill what God has called us to do, even if we have no idea how to go about doing it. Jacob 1:18-19, talks about how we need to be sure do all we can, or we will have the sin of those we were supposed to help, placed upon our backs!! Ah, i sure don’t want that! I pray that the Lord guides you in all that you do and that you are asking him to give you direction. The only thing we got to do is ask, LISTEN, and do…

I love you all and pray you are safe. Keep the Faith.

Love Hermana Gibbons

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Argentina - Rosario #32

---------- Forwarded message ----------

From: Amanda Gibbons

Date: Tue, Sep 14, 2010 at 1:38 PM

Subject: weekly goodies!

To: Bonnie Gibbons

Hey family and friends!

Wow so crazy and awesome week! We had a special conference for just the sisters, and let me tell you, that was an awesome day, full of the spirit and of course giggles and screams of joy for seeing your old comps! Ha, President and his wife spoke and we got to watch a movie!! Ya hold your horses, we watch Errands of Angels. It was really awesome and taught me that I really need to serve my companion. All day I am teaching about the Savior and his love for others, and how we need to be like Him, but if I can’t even serve and love my comp, how can I do that for others. I do love my comp and I feel really blessed to have been with her…BUT…

Now on to a new adventure, TRANSFERS! I am leaving the big city of Rosario and going to Pergamino Centenario (I think, me and the other sisters are together) So ya, another 4 girl pench!! I am excited. We are going in to do a whitewash, which means neither of us have been there before and we gotta work there with only the map and the folder the elders left behind! It’s going to be crazy but I am way excited! I am going to miss a few things from here, like subway! But I am ready to go work in a new area!

Our investigator Fabian will still be getting baptized this Saturday! He is so excited and he cried last night when we told him we are leaving. He is really shy, but he has had the opportunity to know a lot of the members and he received a blessing, so I think he’ll be just fine. I’ll miss that family and I hope the others continue to go to church and realize what they need to do to be baptized. They all know what we teach is true, they just have a few things they have to give up first.

I guess that’s how we all are. We know that we have to be good and work hard and repent so that we can enter into the kingdom of God. But we always mess up, we think of ourselves first and how we can be happy in the here and now. It’s hard to keep an eternal perspective, even me as a missionary! That’s why we have the scriptures, prayer, the temple, and church, to help focus us again on the reason we are here! I am so grateful that God gave us these tools to keep us on track! What a blessing in our lives. It’s funny how much these have changed for me now. Sometimes I used to feel like going to church was such a bummer, a beautiful morning spent indoors!! But now I can’t wait to get inside that chapel and learn more about my Savior. I pray that you are all doing well and that you are doing the things to keep you on the straight path!! I love you, Keep the Faith,

Love Hermana Gibbons

Zach DeFrancis= Do you know Dustin Graham? I guess he played at BYU soccer and he served here! Hope all is well bud!

Hey if anyone knows Cameron Clifford, tell him I saw his video he made here about Ammon among the lamanites. You are a hoot dude!

Monday, September 6, 2010

Argentina - Rosario #31

---------- Forwarded message ----------

From: Amanda Gibbons

Date: Mon, Sep 6, 2010 at 12:10 PM

Subject: goodies!

To: Bonnie Gibbons

Hey all you out there!

Where to start! Well first I don’t think I have ever been so excited to see a bug spray man in my life! He came and fumigated our apartment, because we have an infestation of roaches! When we came back that night, we swept up some good piles of roach carcases! Glad those are gone, and we deep cleaned the pench, so it looks really nice!

We are still teaching the Lopez family! Mirian and Fabian (siblings) have a baptismal date for the 18th and they are both stoked! They are from a poor background and don’t have much schooling, but they sure do understand when we teach them the things of God. They were explaining to us what the plan of salvation was, what they read in the book of mormon and they are just do excited every time we come! They can’t wait until we start and give the prayer, so they can learn some more. Estepania and Lisandro are doing better (they were separated), but when we told them that they hadto get married before they get baptized, they pretty much just laughed at us. So tonight our lesson will be on the lay of chastity and how a family should be formed. They are so awesome, please pray that their hearts will be softened and they will have a desire to change.

Sunday the stake president announced that our area was changed, more than half of our area moved to a different ward!!! So our area shrunk a ton and the other sisters area doubled! Its pretty crazy and we still don’t know if we still work with what we were originally told or not. But with this change, it means that Teresita is not our investigator anymore. We still don’t know, but I’m pretty bummed because she is really awesome and I love teaching her!

So I’ve realized how easy it is to be taken in by the things of the world and I was reading an awesome talk by Hinckley and he said “No son or daughter or God can afford to partake of things that will weaken the mind, the body or the eternal spirit.” We have to make sure that our testimonies are strong and keep building them up. Don’t let the little things start tearing down your spirit, because those things will and you won’t even notice. Satan gets us slowly and he’s very clever! But remember you have the gift of the Holy Spirit and He will be your guide, IF you let Him. He is the SPIRIT OF TRUTH, and for this reason you can feel of Gods love and know that you are in his church. I love you all and I want you all with me forever, so this means you have to endure to the end and when you mess up, ask for the forgiveness that your Father is waiting to give! Hope you all have a great week! Keep the faith.

Hermana Gibbons