Monday, June 28, 2010



Luke and Elder Alvarez


June 28, 2010

Hola familia!
Well we had a good week. Nothing exciting happened, nothing out of the ordinary. That’s cool you talked to Elder Peterson. That all really sounds familiar about the things he wanted haha. You can’t find a lot of things here that are readily available at home. Just last week I found peanut butter and have been eating peanut butter sandwiches, haha. One thing that is cheap and there is a lot of are noodles, also any kind of sauce like mac and cheese sauce (like you mentioned a few weeks ago). I was thinking back of when I was in the MTC, and I remember seeing Brother and Sister Bishop driving in their truck out of the parking lot. I tried shouting at them but to no avail, and I remember seeing a few other people from the stake.
People here have been asking me a question but I don't have the answer for it. Why is the symbol for Canada a leaf? Send me something on that, and if you could set up an email account for me, through hotmail or gmail that I can give the address to the people here, my converts or good friend, so we can keep in contact. It should be something like Lrodgers or Erodgers, something simple (doesn’t need to be one of those). I don't know if we still have it but could you look for the music that we had for the play Moroni. There was a song that I would love to hear again, ¨Oh, Ye Fair Ones¨ and the other ones. If you could look into that, Those church DVD, VHS do not exist here haha.
I got a letter from Sister Nietz and she asked if I knew a certain family from Asuncion. Ask her if they had a son that served in Columbia. If so then my companion knows them. The son served in Colombia and met the family of Elder Alvarez. Then in this mission they kept in touch and he and his dad came to see Elder Alvarez one Sunday. I was talking to the dad in English because he is always in the states and can speak English. He said that the sister missionary that brought his family the gospel was from Calgary, so see what she says. It’s the same last name.
There are a bunch of pictures that I am sending, I got the pictures that you sent of the wildflowers and decided to send some of the scenic shots that I have from here. Thank you for all you do for me. I love this time I have to be here in Paraguay. I am learning so much, I love the gospel and I love my Savior.

Love, Elder Rodgers

Monday, June 21, 2010

Baptism of Matias

Baptism of Augustin in the River Piribebuy

Luke's mission area

Z Poti shirt (Zone Limpio)

Limpio, closest city, picture taken from bus

June 21, 2010

Hola Familia!
Como Esta!?
Wow what a week! We had a wonderful baptism Saturday with Augustin. I had my first baptism at a river, the River Piribebuy (I think that is how it is spelled but it has a Guarani accent). The person who did the baptism was the branch president, Pres. Vera. I have really been learning a lot about ¨testimonies¨. It’s an amazing thing, the first time I bore testimony of the Book of Mormon and Augustin hasn’t missed a day of church yet. He has been paying his tithing, and he wants to go out with us and work. He already has the Aaronic Priesthood. Our stake president wants every man who can have the priesthood to have it because they want Limpio to be its own stake. Then later Saturday we had the baptism of Matias, the son of Leo. I got to do the baptism, and he calls me “Polar Bear” so I would like to leave him with a Canadian Toonie so I hope I don't get taken out this change, in 2 days.
Ok thank you for telling me about the money, I will fix that but I will let you know that I took out money today, but that will be enough for a while. I had to buy a new memory card because my 4 GB one broke so I bought a new one and I will be sending the other 1 GB home soon because it is full. When you send me one back fill it with pictures of Waterton, and wildlife too. I love showing people pictures of mountains and snow and saying that is where I live. Most people here have never seen real snow in their lives.
That t-shirt says Z Poti. “Poti” is “Limpio” in Guarani so it is (Zone Limpio) and on the back it says ¨Ram in the Thicket¨ That map is my area. The city is Limpio, a picture I took from a bus and a random pharmacy.
I have been working on my companion trying to find the thing that will spark the charge. It is hard to find but I haven't given up and I am not giving up because there are elders here that are worse and I know I will get put with one some time later. I am trying to find ways of filling up the time so we don't go to members’ houses and talk. He loves talking to the members and watching soccer. But he is a great teacher. He knows what the people need. When he is really focusing he can do a lot of good.
By the way, I think Fifa is trying to attack the church! Fathers day, Paraguay playing in the world cup, rain - the three things that do not work together when you are looking for people to take to church, but Paraguay won 2-0 so its all good haha. We had 3 investigators in the church and 45 people total. My first week there were only 15 people here in total and I was thinking, ¨Wow, what a small ward¨ haha.
Send the iPod through Fed-Ex. The missionaries here said that iPods in Paraguay are painfully expensive and hard to find. I got the package today with the thermal underwear and the batteries. It got here just fine, so I will expect it within a few weeks.
I have a couple of questions. Can you forward me the letters from Elder Bishop? There are a lot of missionaries that receive the letters from other missionaries to hear about success stories. Maybe you can get a hold of them and send them to me too. Some news that I remember hearing about in January - Ragan and Jason, what’s happening with them, are they still getting married?
There is a scripture that I have been reading lately that I love, Luke 14:28-30, that we have to be finishers in our lives, If we start something we have to finish it. It also relates to Nephi’s story about going back to get the plates. We have to be finishers in our lives. I have heard a talk by President Monson ¨Finishers Wanted¨ but I haven't read it yet. President Monson quotes the scripture. I heard about it from a John Bytheway talk.
Oh one thing more you can send me is the conference issue of the Ensign. We still don’t have it. We have this month’s but not last month’s and I want to read the talks, and some church videos that we can show investigators like “The Testament” and The Restoration”, movies like that. We can find them at the distribution center but there is no time to go to Asuncion for that. Also send any other copies of talks.
Something funny that happened last week, we were doing a family home evening with Leo, Augustin, Maties, and his younger sister and I was reading my family history stories but I had to try and translate it and that wasn’t turning out very well. It was getting kind of boring because they had to wait for us to translate the stories so after I had Elder Alvarez do a quick game and I had a prayer in my heart ¨How can I fix this lesson¨, then it came to me! With a little heavenly help I was able to pull off just the sweetest lesson on patience, and how the people that were sitting for the whole lesson have patience and that is an attribute of Christ. They liked it. So I was full of thanks to God at the end of the day.
Well thanks for everything. I am loving Paraguay! The Church is true. Thanks for everything you do for me!
Love Élder Rodgers

Monday, June 14, 2010


Shepherds Pie meal

Paraguay soccer team sweatpants

Comment by Leslie

The Shepherds Pie and other recipes were some I recently sent to Luke. Tyler Mysyk and Jordan Crane are friends from Calgary who are soon returning or have recently returned from their missions.

June 14, 2010

Hola Familia!
This week went by fast, but I’m sure the coming week will be going even faster with 3 baptisms planned for Saturday, Augstin, Matias (son of Leo), and another girl that is 9 years old (Guana Lupe). We have been having a good week, but it seems along with Tyler (Mysyk) I have been putting in some patience-building weeks too. Elder Alvarez is a great elder, a great teacher but he is really thinking about home a lot and I think he doesn’t know the reason he came on a mission. He wants to sleep in the house all day long, or stay at peoples’ houses and talk for hours (members or investigators), so I am constantly saying things like ¨Well, ready to go¨ or ¨bueno, lets go¨ or in Guarani ¨Ja-ha!¨ haha
Friday we had our last interview with President Wade. Every interview he asks the missionary to say a prayer in Spanish to start but this time he said a prayer in English and he said some things that were very touching. He thanked the Lord for sending me to this mission, and asked that I would be able to learn the Guarani language and many more things. He is a great man. He told me after my mission to keep in touch with him because at the end of this month he is gone.
But something sweet, President Wade has given the missionaries permission to watch the Paraguay game today because it is P-Day, so we will be watching it here too. Italy won the World Cup last time so we'll see (apparently they’re not as good this year) But here in Paraguay there is so much promotion for their team. It’s awesome. I bought some blue sweatpants that say Paraguay and the team logo. I’m still waiting to buy a jersey but they are all over the place here.
I was reading some of the letters that I got from Elder Crane (Jordan) and realized that he finishes his mission June 18 which is in 4 days! So if you hear anything about him, let him know. I would love to hear from him.
I found something really cool in the scriptures this past week that I would love to share briefly. When Nephi was building the ship he says about 5 times that I make it after the manner of God and not of Man. I was thinking a lot about this and then I thought, ¨Yeah, that’s true¨. When we are building our families, our lives, our homes we build them after the manner of God and not of man, because God's ways are higher than our ways.
I made Shepherds Pie this week. It turned out alright! There were a couple things on the list that I don't know where to find here, and the peas were really different but it turned out alright. Then I tried to make the white sauce for noodles, but the noodles were sitting in the water for too long so they were really nasty haha. Trial and error, eh?
Those ties are here all over the place. I have a plan to buy a bunch of white temple ties. I had a plan to send the one I have in that package but in case we went to the temple I would need one or if we had a baptism. But I will be buying more of them.
I love the Gospel so much, and I love Paraguay. I love being able to wear the Savior’s name. I love the Book of Mormon and know it is true and know that is has a converting power that no other book has. Le amo mi Salvador mucho, el hizo todo para mi, por medio del Salvador podamos tener la vida eterna con nuestras families para siempre. (I know how to say it not write it. I hope that was right)
Thank you for everything you do for me.
Love, Élder Rodgers

Monday, June 7, 2010

Paraguayan tie "al-po-we"

Paraguayan weird bug

" Cup containing "Malte Dulce" which is coconut, hot milk and burnt sugar . Cup and drumsticks made from Paraguayan wood, "Palo Santo"

Leather bag for Leslie

June 7, 2010

Hola Familia!
We had a good week, here in Emboscada. We have been teaching a lot of cool people. One person in particular is a man named Augustine. He is a great guy. He lives next door to Leo and didn’t really sound very interested in the church. But one day when we were with our ward mission leader (Bruno), we decided to visit him (last week) and had a great lesson. The spirit was so strong, then he came to church (like I said last week, and he had been drinking the night before). But this week we taught him about fasting and fast offerings. He really seems interested right now. We were walking to church with some kids and we stopped by his house to pick him up and walk together, but when we were clapping Leo opened her door and told us that he had already left! So when we got to the church he was in priesthood, and right before sacrament meeting I saw him alone in a class so I was about to ask him how he was enjoying church. I walked into the classroom and saw that he was paying his tithing! I quickly exited after not knowing if I should say anything or not and went in to sacrament meeting to get the piano keyboard ready. We were walking back with the kids to their house and I told my comp what I saw but I had been thinking that is was fast offerings. Then we decided that he was fasting too. But later that day we went to Leo (her son has a baptism date too) and we were talking to them, then Augustine walked in and we started talking to him too and he told us what happened, and that it was tithing and we taught him about tithing. He is one of the coolest people I have met here and almost everybody knows him as “Tin” (pronounced like ¨Teen¨) in this town because he is always doing different kinds of jobs for people. He has a welding spot and is always helping people with whatever he can.
Our other two people that we had baptism dates with fell through because their husbands have no desire to be married so we are continuing to look for new people.
That’s really cool that you got that package so soon, I was afraid it would take longer. But the tie dad can use. That is a type of tie that they make here, and there are people here that can custom make ties like that. Right now we are looking for it in Luque. It moved locations so whenever we are there we take a look around, but we did find a leather-crafter shop and I found a bag for Mom. I will be looking for a person who can custom design hammocks and have him put a Calgary Stampeders logo or a Calgary flames haha. That photo with Ronald McD was in Asuncion. We were there last week. My comp had to sign some papers. Unfortunately the distribution center was closed because it was Monday. Yes that cup is the Palo Santo cup with something called ¨Mate Dulce¨. There is coconut in it, then you pour hot milk and burnt sugar in it and drink it with the special straw that they have. It’s really good. That boy's name is Josue (Joshua, I think) and he is the grandchild of Brother and Sister Sotelo in Kennedy, He is always there because apparently his father doesn’t want to have anything to do with him. And that is a really weird bug that is here. That’s what it looks like, then it sheds its shell, which is what is in the picture.
I have sent out a lot of letters so the people that sent me letters should be receiving some soon. One thing that would be great to have here would be a magic trick book for coin tricks to amuse the little kids. I have learned a few basic ones.
I like what you said about a testimony. I will read about that. I like that idea.
I mentioned somewhere that I can see what Moroni meant when he said I couldn't write a 100th part. There is so much that goes on here that I do not have time to write it all.
I Love you guys! Thanks for everything that you do for me.
Love, Élder Rodgers