Monday, April 16, 2018

Libertadores - Week 2


I found a cello in Peru :D

So this week was excellent. I'm starting to get to know my area, I think it's the smallest of my 5 areas, but it's still big. We are pretty close to the airport so we see airplanes flying low all the time..... The ward here is a lot different from Paramonga, the church is better established here in Lima because the members are really strong in the gospel. Our ward mission leader is a recent RM who served in Colombia and it's cool because he always comes with us with important appointments.

This week we had planned to leave with a member of the ward who has had a lot of time here and knows a lot of people. Our focus was to go out and have him show us the houses of former investigators that the missionaries had stopped teaching. He was really excited about it, so we went to his house to pick him up at the indicated time. When we got there he asked if we could wait 15 minutes because he was washing his clothes. We agreed, but I remember feeling a little impatient and bothered that we were going to waste time waiting for him. When he finished we stepped out of the house right when an elderly man was passing by. The member stopped the man and introduced him to us. An hour later we were leaving the members house again, but this time with a new investigator with a baptismal goal. That experience really made me think about my attitude. Patience is important, but more important is doing what the Lord wants us to do in the precise moment when we need to do it.

There is a member in our area that plays the cello and she let me play it.

The other picture is of our district.

Elder Harris






Monday, April 9, 2018

Libertadores - Week 1

Back in the Labyrinth

Well I was transferred. My six months in Paramonga were fantastic. I think I grew a little bit in that area and I learned a lot about how to conquer my weaknesses. I honestly felt sad leaving because of the relationships that we had made with the members and converts. But now I'm in a new chapter of the mission. I am now in the Libertadores Ward, El Trebol Stake. This is the zone closest to the center of Lima in our mission so I went from one end of the mission to the other. My area is similar to Naranjal (my third area) but it's a little smaller here and a little more developed. My area is part of the district San Martin de Porres.

My companion is Elder Zevallos, he is from Moquegua, Peru (it's in the south part of Peru). And he just finished his training or in other words he has been on his mission 3 months. But he is 24 years old. He is really excited about the work.

My whole mission I've heard that the Trebol Zone is just full of rich people and it's difficult to help them accept the restored gospel, but in the last few months the area where I'm at has had exceptional success thanks to member referrals. 

Picture of my pensionista and her husband in Paramonga eating soup.

There is nothing better than arriving to an area on Wednesday and having a baptism on Saturday.

Elder Harris





Monday, April 2, 2018

Paramonga - Week 24


El Profeta tiene REVELACIÓN

I think we all felt something special in general conference this weekend. Now we need to specifically remember what we felt, and live it.

This week we got in a car to take us back to Paramonga after being in Barranca all morning in the district meeting. The driver seemed like a normal everyday Peruvian, but after exchanging a few words we realized that not only was he a member of the church but he was also a councilor in the stake presidency. One of the aspects of the restored church that I love is that local leaders are everyday normal people who work, have families, and have many personal responsibilities, but on top of that they direct the work and the church of God. It's amazing. That councilor told us a cool phrase that doesn't sound that cool in English but it does in Castellano El que no vive para servir, no sirve para vivir. He that doesn't live to serve, doesn't act to live.

I am very happy that there is now a South American in the Quorum of the Twelve. I echo the words of Elder Soares that when the Lord wants something to happen he will work miracles to make it happen. But the miracles come as a result of our faith. 



Baptism of the Reyes Family (Limoncillo)


Watching general conference with the North Americans


Fruit salad with ice cream - breakfast


Monday, March 26, 2018

Paramonga - Week 23


Tuvimos un BAUTISMO esta semana

Remember a few weeks ago when I said that a lady in the street told me I looked like Leonardo Decaprio? Well she got baptized this week, along with her two teenage kids.

One scripture that I've used a lot this week is Mosiah 23:

21 Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith.

22 Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people.

Everyday there are trials of patience and faith. But our trust and our FAITH that he put in Christ is what brings us out of those trials with success.

This week we were teaching an investigator who is 19, we were about to say the opening prayer to start the lesson and we asked him if there were anything that we could ask for him in the prayer. His answer was a 10 minute vent about how he wanted to break up with his girlfriend but he didn't know how.

Pres Stauffer shared this quote in the last zone conference and I liked it.

Consider the following statement by Elder Dallin H. Oaks:

“[A person may have] a strong desire to be led by the Spirit of the Lord but … unwisely extends that desire to the point of wanting to be led in all things. A desire to be led by the Lord is a strength, but it needs to be accompanied by an understanding that our Heavenly Father leaves many decisions for our personal choices. Personal decision making is one of the sources of the growth we are meant to experience in mortality. Persons who try to shift all decision making to the Lord and plead for revelation in every choice will soon find circumstances in which they pray for guidance and don’t receive it. For example, this is likely to occur in those numerous circumstances in which the choices are trivial or either choice is acceptable.

“We should study things out in our minds, using the reasoning powers our Creator has placed within us. Then we should pray for guidance and act upon it if we receive it. If we do not receive guidance, we should act upon our best judgment. Persons who persist in seeking revelatory guidance on subjects on which the Lord has not chosen to direct us may concoct an answer out of their own fantasy or bias, or they may even receive an answer through the medium of false revelation” (“Our Strengths Can Become Our Downfall”  Ensign, Oct. 1994, 13–14).

Get ready for GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!

Hasta luego amigos

Elder Harris




Monday, March 19, 2018

Paramonga - Week 22

Regaton

In the last year and 8 months my taste of music has really adapted. As missionaries we aren't allowed to listen to worldly music but sometimes it just happens. For example, right now I am in an internet cafe and the guy 3 computers to the right is blasting some good regaton. The music they listen to here is awesome, from combia to salsa. I don't get why we don't listen to it much in the states.

Yesterday we passed by a family that is investigating the church and they said they were busy because the sons were doing homework, we offered to help and for the next half hour I was sweating trying to remember all the math that I forgot in the last year and 8 months. I'm excited to get back to studying, I'm sure I will study either civil or electrical engineering. I'm torn between the two, but don't worry I'm not thinking about it too much ;)

This week we had a baptism of Juliano. It was great seeing him really be able to understand faith and repentance. And he asked the gringo to baptize him ha.  He was really nervous to share his feelings after the baptism but he managed to say a few things, then he said in a loud voice Yo sé que la salvación viene por Jesucristo. (I know that salvation is only possible through Jesus Christ). When he said that I really felt the spirit. I'm grateful we were able to progress and show true charity to this man. I know that it's because of those changes that we have been able to help him become a convert.

This week one recent convert in our ward returned from traveling to Italy for work. We hadn't known him before so it was cool hearing his story about he found the missionaries and how he came to live the gospel. He asked us if we could teach his 19 year old brother. The next day we came back and found Moshei, his brother. And the lesson with him was awesome. He was so excited about everything we taught from Jose Smith to the Book of Mormon. He came to church with his brother this week as well.

This week we also saw some people carrying bricks up a hill to a house that they were constructing so we helped them. By the time we ended our white shirts were orange, but they thanked us by giving us dinner! And they also said that we were true Christians and real disciple of Christ.

Es Todo

Gracias

Elder Harris

Misión Perú Lima Oeste





Monday, March 12, 2018

Paramonga - Week 21


Corto y dulce

Today I completed 20 months in the mission but I still feel like there's a lot of things I need to improve. I have a lot left to learn still. I feel a huge desire to give more and help more people come to know how it feels to live the true gospel of Jesus Christ.

Next week I will send a better letter.

Elder Harris


Work visit with Elder Maldonado



Monday, March 5, 2018

Paramonga - Week 20

Torta

My phrase of the soul this week is from 2 Nefi 33:10  "If ye believe not in these words believe in Christ. And if ye shall believe in Christ ye will believe in these words, for they are the words of Christ." The Book of Mormon is the word of Christ. This week we were teaching Juliano, our investigator, when two lady's from another church knocked on the door. Juliano innocently let them in (he lets everyone in his house that speaks of God). They sat down with us and we just kept teaching the lesson normally, until the lady started arguing with every point of doctrine that we taught. She had a lot to say about the church and the Book of Mormon, but my companion and I we felt calm. We just let her talk. We just listened. When she finally gave us a moment to respond we just testified of the divinity of the Book of Mormon. She tried to prove to us that it was false but after several minutes, she got up and left, obviously a little frustrated. I'm so grateful for the shield that is the Book of Mormon, in those moments when the woman was trying to destroy everything we believe and telling us that all our doctrine was a lie, I just thought in this scripture and I realized that I will never be able to deny that the Book of Mormon is true and that it comes from Christ. It is HIS word.

This week was Alexis´s baptism, he was baptized on Saturday, confirmed on Sunday and Sunday in the afternoon he moved to Santiago, Chile. So we are going to transfer his member record and everything. He is 13 and his dad was able to baptize him. Because of errors of the baptismal prayer he was baptized 4 times, but he said afterward that he loved it because he felt cleaner with every dunk.

This week we were knocking on a door asking for directions and a lady came out with two huge pieces of birthday cake! And she gave them to us without even asking who we were. A few days later we taught her and her husband and they accepted a baptismal date.

I love this work, I feel like the time is slipping away quickly.

Elder Harris