Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Aug 29 : Doubt Not Fear Not

There wasn´t anything real special about this week. not gonna lie. It´s getting a little hotter which is kinda nice and we´re working working working :)

We had 2 investigators come to church this week which was like a miracle!!!!!!! first is Ester. She´s a miracle find. We knocked her door and she said she had a friend that died 5 years ago that was Mormon and she had already read the book of Mormon and then invited us in for hot chocolate! ahhh awesome! She then told us that she had been catholic her whole life but has always had doubts and doesn´t feel like it´s right but she doesn´t change religions because it´s a tradition in her family to be catholic. As we´ve been teaching her she´s become a little missionary. She was talking to one of her Catholic friends and started teaching them the plan of salvation! haha she attended church and loved it! She was a little overwhelmed because she didn´t understand it all but she felt the Spirit and that´s all that matters! 

This week we chased after a dog and returned it to it´s family and got a new investigator out of it hahahaha we looked like idiots running down the street trying to catch the dog! but it was so funny

D&C 6:34,36
34. Therefore, fear not, little flock; do good; let earth and hell combine against you, for if ye are built upon my rock, they cannot prevail
36. Look unto me in every thought; doubt not, fear not.

Ah that last verse is my favorite! DOUBT NOT, FEAR NOT. The Lord is by your side always! Look unto him in every thought and there will be no need to doubt or fear when we have the Lord on our side. When we´re living his commandments and doing everything we can to be righteous children of God we receive the blessings and the help and answers that we need. I have seen this first hand in the mission, that when we really do everything with the Love of Christ in our hearts we are better representatives of Jesus Christ. I challenge you all to do that! In all circumstances to look unto him, to give him all your trust and confidence, because he knows you perfectly. Every flaw, every strength, and if we really give him our every thought, there will be no need to doubt of fear. 

con mucho mucho MUCHO amor!!
Hermana Smoot
Two of our Young Women who want to go on missions

Aug 22 : 6 Months and Unicorns

 This past Wednesday I hit 6 months!!! wahooo so weird and I feel old but that I have so much more time. Ah time is so weird. But we had a party because I hit 6 months on Wednesday and my companion hit 9 months on Thursday so our members fed us really well and it was just like a 2 day party! 

On Sunday night we had a family history get together and we helped a ton of our members and recent converts start and do their family history. It was so cool to see some of them just starting this new line of genealogy. They asked to see my family tree and when I logged on and could go back for hundreds and hundreds of years on both sides they were all in awe. Before the mission I always took that for granted. But seeing how that motivated the members here and how they just want to have that history to show their kids and to have the pride to know where they came from. SO COOL!!!
Our Family History Party

 This past Tuesday I taught a piano lesson :)  One of our recent converts wanted to learn how to play so I started teaching her little by little. Our lessons are every Tuesday morning and she just wants to know how to plunk out easy hymns. So before the lesson I have to go through and write out the melody on a separate sheet of paper and I`m teaching her how to read music. It`s kind of funny because to me this is so easy but for her it`s something totally new. But she has the drive to learn and I`m really excited for her! :) 
These past couple weeks have been really hard on me emotionally. So last week I asked our president of the mission, Pres. Goates, to give me a blessing. When I met with him we talked for an hour and a half about the mission and my desires and what I want to accomplish as a missionary and in life. When he gave me the blessing it helped me so much. The power of the priesthood is something incredible. It really is the power of our Heavenly Father.

We`ve had a couple miracles this week. First is Nicolas. We were walking down the street and just like every missionary, saying hi to everyone. We passed by him and said hi and didn`t think anything of it. He then turned around and stopped us and asked what church we were from. We introduced ourselves and talked a little bit about what we teach and what we believe in. He said he was going through a really hard time and had prayed that morning for a sign of what he should do in his life. So with that we set an appointment for the next day. The next day we took him on a tour of the chapel and taught him about the Restoration and he loved it! When we had our second lesson he had read the pamphlet, the introduction to the book of Mormon and all of the testimonies of the 3 and 8 witnesses and Joseph Smith! In our second lesson he said he was living with his friend at the moment but his friend was kicking him out and he didn`t have anywhere to live and doesn`t have a job. After the lesson we took him to meet with the counselor of the church that helps people find jobs and luckily our stake president was there too. So he filled out applications and everything. After all that we invited him to come with us to a baptism just 30mins away and he accepted! And he loved that too!! but when he left the baptism he had to go stay at another friends house that lives almost an hour and a half away. So  that kinda complicates things a little bit. But Hna Brown and I have come to the conclusion that if we have to drop him and send his contacts to other missionaries, we`re just glad that we could help him just this little bit and introduce him to the gospel. 

Our other miracle is Silvia. We were our knocking doors and she answered and warmly welcomed us into her home! WHAT? How strange. She told us that she had just moved to Mendoza and where she had lived before was across the street of an LDS chapel. One day she had gotten curious and walked over and asked them for ¨their bible¨ and they gave her a Book of Mormon and called the missionaries! Turns our that my last companion (Hna Sanchez) had taught Silvia for 2 months before she moved! Silvia has read the pamphlet about the Restoration every night for 4 months and loves it!  We call her ¨Our reference from the Lord¨ :) 
We have another investigator named Justo. He`s a rock. He`s a father of 3 and loves his kids! This week he attended church and we were so excited!!! it`s the first time we`ve had an investigator attend church in 3 months in this ward!  little by little we`re progressing!

It says unicorns in the Bible. Isaiah 34:7. ¨and the unicorns shall come down with them¨ If it says it in the bible. it`s true. 

someone this week thought we we`re from Brazil and thought our accent was Portuguese. hahahahahahaha 

I LOVE THE MISSION!!!! Just in these short 6 months my testimony has grown like crazy about missionary work. I know that the mission work is the work of the Lord. That only through the work we can help bring so many people unto Christ. Moroni 7:29-31

Brother and Sister Warner going home.  They were like mission parents.

Missionaries at a baptism

I found Elder Richey

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

August 15 : Happily Serving

Preface from Heidi:
            This week has been an especially tough one for Kylie.  Since she has been on her mission she and her companion opened a new area and then closed it again 14 weeks later. Then in a matter of a few weeks she was transferred twice because of missionaries unexpectedly leaving the mission field.  So in a matter of about 5 weeks she personally has had 3 unexpected transfers.  It has been extremely discouraging and emotionally hard to engaged in the work lately to say the least.  As she met with her mission president this week (she now lives and serves where he livesJ )  he told her she probably was experiencing a little missionary PTSD with all she had been through in her first area and the transfers that came after.  He gave her a priesthood blessing and she says she feels strength and peace to move ahead with what the Lord expects of her.  I asked her why she was not sharing all these struggles in her big emails – she responded that some were to personal and in most cases she just did not want to say anything negative about those she was associating with.  It’s a small world with social media.  So for those of you that have often commented to me that Kylie’s mission seems like a great big EFY or party – know that it is not!  The struggle is REAL.  MISSIONS ARE HARD.  But with her faith in her Father in Heaven and our continuous prayers of support, all our missionaries will have the strength to do what is expected and required of them – with a smile.  Thanks for supporting Kylie.  

This past week has been awesome! Since last Sunday was Hna Browns birthday we basically had a  P-Day party for her! We went shopping and then met up with some other hermanas for lunch and it was so much fun! On Wednesday we had lunch with one of our less actives from Peru and she is just the cutest little thing! She has one daughter but works all day long because she wants to get her daughter to college! We had lunch with them and the hermana asked me if I liked spicy stuff. Heck ya I like spicy stuff!! I was just thinking like a little spice, not much more, but she walked outside into her fresh garden and took off this red pepper and brought it in and served it to me. Okay 1. I haven´t eaten anything really hot in a long time so I´m not to used to it. 2. GOOD HECK THAT THING WAS A PEPPER FROM THE DEVIL. LITERALLY. The name of the pepper was pepper from the devil - not a joke. Ya, I´m not saying I like spicy anymore because apparently I don´t even know what spicy is! 

​This is one of my sister training leaders Hna Recalde! We had exchanges this week and I love her!

Familia Avila: Okay this family is golden!!! We´ve been trying to get them to accept a baptismal date for 3 weeks and this week they actually accepted after we taught about the Atonement. The dad said his main purpose in life is to follow Jesus Christ! Okay - how perfect is that?!!!  So we have a baptismal date for them Sept 10. But they didn´t come to church so we´ll see what happens. But they´re awesome!
So we don´t have to many investigators but yesterday we prayed and prayed and prayed because we had no one to visit after church and basically our plan was to knock doors from 4:30-9 - haha kinda crazy but ya. We we´re listening to the spirit a lot more than usual and talking to literally EVERYONE that walked by us! We found these women that are, what we like to call, ¨References from the Lord.¨ The first one was Silvia and she was new in the neighborhood as of 4 months ago, and had lived across the street from an LDS church before she moved and listened to the missionaries! She invited us in and pulled out the pamphlet of the Restoration and said since the moment the missionaries had given it to her she read it every night before she went to bed with the Book of Mormon!! ya I about died! So we´re just a little excited that we found her! 

We went running this morning and I tripped and fell on my face cause I didn´t have my glasses on and couldn´t see ..... ya I´m an idiot. 
We had our zone conference this week and hna Brown and I are the only sisters in the zone, so our zone leaders asked us to do a little activity lesson thing about unity in your companionship. haha We took on this challenge like champs!! We made it a relay race where you had to work together to get your investigator to the baptismal font and the prize was homemade cinnamon rolls (hna brown is an amazing cook by the way) and they LOVED IT!!! hahah it was so funny to watch these elders go all out! It was some good entertainment :)

Our zone of Elders!  We are basically the moms!

This is my companion hermana Brown.  I love her!

3 Nephi 11:15-16
Take action and get to know your Savior!

I love you I love you I love you ALL!!!!! 

Hermana Smoot

Thursday, August 11, 2016

So this week nothing happened. Pretty boring to be honest. We just walked and walked and walked and walked and got tired! haha Our area is so stinking big!!!! Hermana Brown and I have both acknowledged that we have gained some weight in the mission and we have started a workout plan!  We run 3 days a week and 3 days we do hard cardio and want to die. But it`s good. We`re motivated! and I will not gain more weight haha and the giant area helps with that too. One of the ladies in our apartment building is our best friend! She`s like 60 years old but she brings us over cake and little treats during our studies and she`s just a doll. We went to teach her one night and she had a piano in her apartment!!! I about died! That`s like unheard of in Argentina! I asked her if I could play for her and just like any old lady, she said yes. I sat down and played for 45 minutes and Hna Brown sang and she loved it!! We will be doing that once a week :) Who knew all those long hard years of piano would pay off and I`d love it this much! Also .... yesterday was Hna Browns birthday!!!!! Wahoooo we had a party! and today is party day 2! We had lunch with some awesome members and some elders from our zone came and we played games and ate the best food and an amazing cake and ahhh I love our ward :) 

Our Birthday party for Hermana Brown

So we`re lacking on investigators a little bit and the investigators we do have work full time and are single men. So we don`t teach them to often because either they cancel, or the member we have for the lesson cancels or someones cat dies and they can`t do it. I don`t know. Some people are just crazy! haha But I had the absolute privilage to teach a Catholic Preist this week :) (please oh please be able to read the sarcasm in that sentence!) It was very interesting. When we talked to him the first time we gave him a book of mormon and he said he read it every day! WHAT? He would just open up to a random page, read, and that was it! He said he liked it! But then at the end of the lesson he gave us the Book of Mormon back and we were super confused. He said he had an obligation to God and the Pope to be faithful. yah. I`m not gonna write what went through my head at that moment haha
We have this other investigator Emanuel that is so stinking smart! This guys takes notes on what he reads and reads and prays every day and loves to learn about the gospel! He`s just not coming to church ..... hmmm ya. But he`ll get there :)
We`ve been visiting a lot of less actives lately and most of them are old single ladies that don`t have much to do. So when we come they make us food and talk our ears off for 2 hours. :) I`ve learned many tricks on how to stay awake and interested. haha Some of these ladies have the coolest stories! I love it! It`s like story time every day :) with cookies, milk and all!

Amos 8:11-12
Do we as members understand what we have? The knowledge of the gospel is something that people in this world are searching for. The answers we have, the peace we feel, the hope and love we recognize are because we are members of the only church with the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Please recognize this! We are so blessed to have these answers that people are literally hungering for! I know that this church has everything we could ever ask for. I know that we have the pristhood, the power and authority of God that helps us progress towards our Heavenly home. I know that this church is true and I have 0 doubt that my Heavenly Father loves me and is looking out for me and for everyone that is reading this and more! Please oh please do not take the church and it`s blessings for granted, because you don`t really realize what you have. 

les quiero muchisimo!
hermana smoot

Yes I got kissed by Messi - you just can't see his jersey

Thursday, August 4, 2016

August 1, 2016

Sooooooo I got special transferred again :)  I´m not a bad missionary i promise! One of the hermanas in the mission had to go home because of anxiety so her companion needed a new companion. So the first people they call is the trio! haha Tuesday morning they called and said I needed to be in my new area by the afternoon so it all happened super fast. My new companion is Hna Brown from Dallas Texas and our area is Mendoza Centro. Literally the center of Mendoza. So we have a billion tourists and so many cars and big buildings and it's the complete opposite of Justo Daract and it´s throwing me for a loop! But I love it!! Hna Brown is so much fun and such a hard worker. The area is super nice because we have a ton of people. It makes for great opportunities to talk to people in the street, but then again, because we´re in a richer area more people reject us. But for every 5 people that reject us, 1 person listens :) This area has a ton of potential .... once we find the people. haha But the ward is awesome and we eat lunch with members everyday. So I´m really getting a feel for Argentina food ;) I´ll be here for the whole next transfer (hopefully) haha 
This is Hermana Brown

Emanuel is a 25 year old college student that loves to learn and read! heck ya! We´ve got something for him to read and learn about haha He´s progressing really well. We found him sitting in a park and taught him the first lesson about the Restoration and when we visited him yesterday he had read it all and taken notes on what he understood and wrote down questions he had when he read!!! Freak - I don´t even study that well!!! We´ve just gotta work with him a little more about the apostasy and prophets, but he has huge potential! 
Claus is in his early 30s and is a radiologist. The only time we´ve visited since I´ve been here was crazy! We asked him what he remembered about the last lesson and he basically taught us the whole plan of salvation perfectly and then we asked if he had any questions and he said ¨what chapter should I read next?¨ Wow. just wow. he´s golden. 
We´ve been doing a lot with our less actives and trying to get them to come to church. It´s crazy to see these people with fantastic testimonies not going to church and not receiving all the blessings they could be. It´s sad. But that´s why we´re here :)
Okay EVERYONE here knows English!! Like we´ve taught 3 lessons this week in English and the people understand and have a full on conversation with us! It´s nuts! Sometimes it´s really weird cause it´s now a habit to talk and pray and teach in Spanish, so even when I do talk in English, some of the words and ideas come out in Spanish. It´s super weird but I like it :)

Okay I had the coolest experience this week!!! So it was one of my first days here and we went and had lunch with one of our members. While we were waiting for the food we were getting to know each other and the father said ¨Smoot ... Like Mary Ellen Smoot. The former relief society president¨ I said ¨ya that´s my grandma!¨ and then his mom started freaking out ¨HERMANA SMOOT WAS HERE 20 YEARS AGO!!¨ haha what? They pulled out pictures and everything! My grandma and grandpa Smoot had sat in that same house with these same members almost 20 years ago, and now I´m serving here in their ward 20 years later.
This is the picture of my grandparents!!!! left to right: Someone traveling with Grandma, Hna Nacarrato, Grandma Smoot, Hno Nacarrato that works in our stake presidency, bishop Nacarrato that´s our bishop, and Grandpa Smoot :) 
The hermana was the relief society president at the time and every year after she sent my grandma her Christmas card and every year my grandma sent a letter back. I was so taken back by this experience! I'm still just in awe that the Lord has placed me in this ward with these people so I could have that experience. I am so beyond blessed words can´t even describe it! 

This is Hna Nacarrato right now!  
Another crazy experience this week. So on Friday we were crazy busy! like we were literally running to and from appointments! It got to the end of the day and we were running to our apartment so we wouldn´t be late! We got to the door of our apartment building and Hna Brown couldn´t find the keys in her bag. She was the one that had locked the door and kept the keys for the day so we knew that she had had them. We both started freaking out and on the side walk completely emptied both of our bags and could not find our keys! One of our neighbors let us in the building but we still didn´t have the key for our room or the key to the church. We finally accepted that there´s a good chance that they fell out of her pocket while we were running through the center of Mendoza. We we´re so scared to call the office elders cause we knew they would be mad. So we prayed first as one last resort. And before we called hna Brown said ¨Hna Smoot. Check your bag one more time.¨ All I did was open my bag and the keys were sitting on the top of my scriptures. What an answer to our prayers. The power of prayer is INCREDIBLE! Use the power of prayer every day! It's amazing and I promise that your Heavenly Father is listening to every word!!

Helaman 5: 8 
¨and now my sons, behold i have somewhat more to desire of you which desire is, that ye may not do these things that ye may boast, but that ye may do these things to lay up for yourselves a treasure in heaven yea which is eternal, and which fadeth not away; yea, that ye may have that precious gift of eternal life, which we have reason to suppose hath been given to our fathers.¨
always always always make sure your actions are helping you progress towards your Heavenly Father. 

i love you all and you´re always in my prayers :)
les quiero muchisimo
Hermana Smoot