Week 25: Piura …

Haha, this week was good. Reaaaaaaaally good. We had 5 investigators at church! That´s like the key indicator I live for! Solid!!

I ate cow intestine today… I thought I was eating clams or squid or something. What I do when I get to eat something gross is I eat it really fast so I can wash it down with something normal. This is always the wrong course of action. Why? Because when you eat all of something really fast everyone thinks you did that because you loved it and definitely want more. Haha, it actually wasn’t that bad as long as I kept thinking it was clams.

We received some AWESOME counsel this week that our focus should be on rescuing less actives, and this council came with the promise that as we focus on the less actives, we will have more baptisms AND better retention. Wow, what an answer to my prayers! I told you guys how frustrated I was because I just wasn’t sure where to focus our time. NOW I KNOW!!! And it feels so good to have this direction. It makes me want to work harder!

I love you guys! Have a great week!

Hermana Cardon


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Week 24: Guess Who I Saw in Chiclayo …

Ok, so Chiclayo was AWESOME! We had a three hour bus ride to get there in which I tried to sleep but because I am so accustomed to the missionary schedule I ended up reading all 2013 Liahonas in English that I had been wanting to catch up on! And then I got to read my favorite parts all over again on the three hour trip home! It was a great way to prepare for the spiritual feast we had in the meeting.

When we got to Chiclayo it was like we never left home! It’s the same desert, armpit-of-the-universe plus a zillion stray dogs scenery that we love in Piura!!!

And the chapel was the same as our chapel! And so with our whole mission and the Chiclayo mission there were 440 missionaries in that puny little guy, it was awesome! And Elder Nelson shook all of our hands and blessed us! It was soo cool, life changing!

Here comes the crazy part—I was sitting next to the companion of none other than Elder Chandler White!!!!!! Elder White was sitting on the stand with our leaders. He saw me first and then his companion nudged me to ask me if I knew the missionary on the stand. YOU BET I KNOW HIM!!! I cried. Haha I don’t know when the last time I saw Chandler was but I think it must have been before he got his mission call because I didn’t really know he was in Peru…. and who would have guessed the last time we saw each other that the next time we would see each other would be in a puny capilla in Peru with an apostle of the Lord and that we’d all be speaking spanish?? The missionary next to me told me that Elder White is the humblest, hardest working companion he has ever had, that he is “muy muy bueno.” So Sister White, Allison— Not a bad rep!! We talked for like 5 minutes after Elder Nelson left and before my companion and I got on the bus. He told me the Whites are moving to California. I told him Dallin is going to Ecuador. Tears. It was a good day.

(This photo was sent by Chandler to his family. Kayla totally pilfered it from Facebook.)

I love you guys! I am working hard and learning a lot! Every week I feel like I am learning and becoming better at my calling! I think I am becoming too attached to this ward though, haha, I don’t ever want to get transferred!!

Hermana Cardon


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Week 23: CHICLAYO!

This week our entire mission is going to Chiclayo to listen to Elder Russel Nelson speak! Chiclayo is totally out of our mission boundaries!

I’m really excited. To prepare, we are of course praying and studying, but also on Saturday we had a mission-wide fast. It was awesome.

This week was good. We will have a baptism this weekend with Brother Dominguez which might be the happiest day of my life. I have been teaching that man since my first week here in Peru, and he has changed SO MUCH, and to finally see him enter the waters of baptism will be so sweet. He is one who really is converted, who recognizes, actively seeks and chooses the Spirit of the Lord for his guide. I could write a book about his conversion story because it is so good….I’m putting that on the long list of things I will have to tell you guys in 12 months.

My companion and I had our first real dirty companionship inventory this week. First five weeks was psuedo-perfect, but now we’re really confronting our differences, haha… Luckily I have all my handy dandy RA skills that have helped me so much know where we are and what we’ve got to do to keep the peace, haha. I am really learning it is so much better to have peace than to be right.

One thing I really understand more than ever right now that before my mission I just don’t think I totally understood is the gravity of the fact that we have free agency. I think before my mission I saw myself more as a product of my circumstances rather than of my choices. I think my investigators see themselves that way too because so many of them, when we invite them to do something, they answer “Si Dios quiere.” Which is to say,  “If God wants me to.” They sometimes seem to really think that if God really wants us to keep His commandments, He will create a situation where we have no other alternative. That is exactly the opposite of the nature of our mortal experienc! If there were never anything to be gained from disobedience, this life would not produce the men and women God wants us to become–men and women who are patient, honest, loving, smart, hardworking, etc. In order to achieve this end,  we must face oppostition–it is up to us to choose what we really want and who we want to become. God has done so much to help us become good and be happy and successful. He has given us scriptures, prophets, His Spirit, the Church, covenants, etc. We choose how much light we let in and how much we use the opportunities we are given to grow and develop a character like His. Do we trust God that His way is better? That going to church will, in the end, make us happier than sleeping in? That being honest really is better than the grade we would get if we cheated? I dunno, just something I’ve been thinking about alot. It makes me want to study more.

Hermana Cardon


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Week 22: This week …

Well, another week has gone by… haha I don’t know what to say. I guess I feel a little disanimated… I don’t know if that’s the right word, haha, but my companion and I are getting along really good which helps a lot. Yesterday, Sunday, was supposed to be our busiest day because it being the last day of the week is usually our last day to tie up all the loose ends to what goals we haven’t yet completed. Well, we reached all of our goals by Saturday, so yesterday we used a lot of time doing some street contacting in a park in a part of our area that in all my time here I had never contacted in. (I have been in the same area since I got here.) So anyway, we were talking to a bunch of new people which was awesome but also a little overwhelming. I think I came away from that feeling a little down… I just don’t know where to put our time… if we should focus more on really strengthening the less actives and recent converts or if we should just keep doing what we’re doing: a mix of less actives, converts, new investigators, and investigators. Anyway, I have a lot of praying to do to find out where to put our time.

Lest any of you think this email is just a downer, I assure you that all is well. Part of the problem is that this keyboard doesnt have exclamation points. Haha. But seriously, we did have a really good week. Especially the past couple of days I’ve been thinking a lot about the Restoration…. maybe that’s all I ever think about, haha, but especially I’ve been thinking about what the message of the Restoration really is, because the people here really do understand who Jesus Christ was in terms of what He did and how we ought to follow Him. They understand the commandments, the importance of being obedient and accepting the atonement by faith, repentance, and baptism. It’s actually sometimes suprising how really, we aren’t offering anything too different. But in my opinon, what really is relevant for everyone that was lost as a result of the great apostasy is the true nature of repentance, personal revelation, and the purpose of all our experiences here on earth. I wish I had time to elaborate more, LOVE YOU ALL.
Hermana Cardon

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