Monday, July 25, 2011

July 25, 2011

Hey Family!
We broke a record here!! We had 60 in church. There has been more than that in the past, a long time ago, but it is the most that I have ever seen! Jorge Gonzalez went to Church (that inactive family that we found) with his other *girl-who-is-a-friend* haha.
Rafaela went to church. Her son Cristian was baptized with Elder Thomson, and we have been working with the mom. But problem, she doesn’t read! So we are going to be passing by during the week to help her. At the end of this week we will be going to a missionary capacitation (ability) meeting in Yby Yau, with Concepcion. So I will be seeing some old companions I left in Concepción and a book of Mormón on C.D. So I have asked Elder Salvatierra to bring it for me. We will give that to her (Rafaela) so that she can listen to the Book of Mormón while she is working, cooking, and resting. Her son (18 years old) and his girlfriend just had a baby so we are going to be trying to share with them too.
I will take out money next week to make the orders for the ao´poi (aow-po-ee) The dollar is low. I was thinking of taking out Gs 1,000 mil. I think that would cover 6 nice, well made shirts. Let me know what you think. The dollar is 1=3.80 so it would be about $263, more or less.
We are planning an activity, a big activity called Paraguay Pyhareve (Night of Paraguay). We are going to be inviting EVERYONE!!!! There will be Paraguayan food, dance, music, culture! It will be great. We are planning for the 11th of August.

Send a letter to Josh Hunter and tell him that he has to WRITE ME!!!!! and if he doesn’t....... bad things may occur....just saying....
If it would be possible to attend Brandon Wight´s farewell that would be great. He attended mine, and I am, well-a little far to attend his, to send my congratulations. Tell him to write me, that I have been waiting... haha(And if you see Jordan Crane there gently remind him that I have not gotten his letter...)
I wrote a letter to Brother Godfrey, and sent it with an Elder who was to go to Asuncion for changes, to get sent, but as I had other things to send and they never got to the office I am worried that the letter was never sent properly. So keep me updated if he has received my letter.

Bad news, I think that I may have lost my camera.......although all the pictures are backed up on my drive. It’s not a big loss but I have to do a big search. Our house is only 3 rooms so it shouldn’t be toooo hard to lose something in there.
But thanks for everything, family. I love you all SOOOO MUCH!
Send my love to all!
Élder Lucas Rodgers
LA OBRA DE DIOS ES MARAVILLOSA! ME ENCANTA!!! (The work is wonderful. I love it.)

Monday, July 18, 2011

Luke and Elder Alvarez from Honduras

Quote on wardrobe

July 18, 2011

Hola familia,

Wow, what a week. The weather has been pretty much perfect!

That is great that Emily has got her call!! Tell her congratulations for me!!!!

We had a good Sunday. Our investigator, Ramon, went to church and had a good experience. His beliefs came out on Saturday a discussion that we had with him, that the Godhead are one in being. We had a big discussion with him about that. He has studied a lot about spiritualism... and he doesn’t believe that families can be forever so when we got to church he was walking in and the priesthood meeting was about the eternal marriage.... “Noooo”, I was thinking in my head. That brought a lot of doubts up. It is times like that when missionaries start sweating haha. But the Sacrament meeting was great. An active member came with her sister who had recently moved from Asuncion to PJC and the member told us when we could come by this week to teach her! Miracles!!!! And also we were walking one day with my old companion down the street and a lady stopped us in the street to ask us if we had a bible to give her. We had a short conversation with her, gave her a Book of Mormon, and after a few visits (her mother is 103 years old and still living) she commented to us that her neighbors are members of our church. We clapped their neighbor’s house looking for a ¨Jorge¨. A man comes out and says his name is Lazaro and so we start talking to him. Their whole family (Gonzalez family) were pioneers here, going to church in Brazil because there was no church in PJC, and they moved to Asuncion, came back, and lost contact with everyone. That was 15 years ago! The Lord led us to a very humble family that nobody in the church knew about. The brother of this man’s name is Jorge. He is about 21 years old.

We came back with Elder Vasquez and met Jorge’s ¨friend-who-is-a-girl¨, explained that the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesucristo and about his appearance to the Nephites. We saw a very strong look of interest to the story, we shared a story from the Book of Mormon that they liked, and committed them to go to church but of course they forgot. So we will be going and working with this family. Their dad passed away. Our goal is activate the family and get them to the temple.

I’m sending a picture of a quote that some missionary left on the wardrobe that I really enjoy reading. I am enjoying reading the latter chapters of Alma. The ways of Moroni were AMAZING and INTELLIGENT! Because he was (Alma 48:11-18), his enemies were mad at him because he kept the commandments of God and was strengthened (Alma 49:27). Which is, I’m sure, how Satan feels when we keep the commandments, that he wants to ¨beber nuestro sangre¨! (as it says in 49:27)

I think that the reason that I love these chapters so much is because the symbolism is so clear. It is not a war of flesh and blood that we are fighting but a battle of testimony, our souls, and faith-see Ephesians 6 (I think, the last chapter). Thanks for everything that you guys do for me! I pray that you will continue to receive the blessings that God has prepared. I am really enjoying this time to be here and we are working everyday looking for new people to find and to help!

Love Elder Lucas Rodgers

Monday, July 11, 2011

New T-shirt

Luke with old companions Meneses and Salvatierra and other elders

Luke at the Asuncion Temple with Elder Vasquez and President and Sister Madariaga

July 11, 2010

Hola Familia!

WOW what an experience. (Helaman’s Encampment) That would have been amazing to attend! Those pictures are awesome. This morning I was reading Alma 46 about Helaman and the Standard of Liberty. The scripture that I love from that chapter (well one of the scriptures that I really love) is 21. Just imagine those warriors running, getting their armor on in the name of the Lord, to fight until death for their beliefs. Just imagine what the Father was thinking when he saw their faith.
So.... we had changes... but I will begin this narration from last Monday
Monday I sent you guys an email. I brought my camera with me but I could not find it after. We went home, then prepared (we were in a trio with Elder Levos, our old zone leader who went home) for our BBQ but I didn’t have my camera so I didn’t think too much of it. When we got to the church to cook Elder Levos put his camera down on the ground and we were preparing the meal. Some youth came in with the intent to use the field to play soccer but we said that it was occupied and they left. A few moments later Elder Levos noticed that his camera was gone! They had taken it. So after we had played a little soccer we left to go back home. I went home with Rodrigo, a young man that always does visits with us, and my companion. Elder Levos went back one last time to the house of some of the youth to ask about the camera. We got home. My camera was nowhere to be found so we decided to run up to the computer shop and ask if anyone had found a camera. (with a lot of hope) They said no. I went to the cubicle where I was sitting and looked under the desk and there in the back corner a camera in a case!!! WOW QUE SUERTE! (luck) So I had it again. That night we went with Elder Levos to a visit in his area because there was a death in the family and it was a visit he had to make. We got back to his house at 9:30 ish. It was far away. Then we talked and got ready for bed. Phone rings..... changes......... we hear him say things ....that’s awesome, then he finishes and comes to us..... with a smile.... tells us all the changes of the zone (my district got changes - Elder Sears left) then tells us to guess where my companion is going! to CONCEPCIÓN!!!! Wow that was crazy. he was always saying that he would like to go there. Then Elder Levos looked to me.. and smiled. He asked me if I have munchies or if I have been putting on a little weight... because YOUR’RE PREGNANT!!!!! (in missionary lingo - will have a son,or train). So as of **right now** I am training a missionary. He’s the only Latin that came in the group. His name is Elder Vasquez from Honduras. Back to the story :-) -------- then I got a call from Elder Anderson in Kennedy telling me that he, Elder Meneses, and Elder Salvatierra are also traning!!!! I left to Asuncion Tuesday at night, saw a bunch of old companions and good friends. We left to go to the temple and the chapel beside it and had a meeting with Presidente then we got our companions! Elder Rodgers...gets.....Elder Vasquez!
Then we took the long ride back to PJC. But I am having a good time. We had 2 hours of companionship study every day so that we can go over all the study material. This a great opportunity and I am really enjoying it. He is really helping my Spanish and I am teaching him English so it is a fair trade, haha.
While we were in the car with all the trainers I saw a sign that hit me. it says in English, "Yesterday we had to be big. Today we need to be giante"
Thanks for everything I love you all so much. You are always in my prayers!
Love from afar,
Elder Lucas Rodgers

Monday, July 4, 2011

July 4, 2011

Hola Familia!

Greetings from the cold P.J.C.

We had a very interesting week! It has been soo COLD!! haha. I think that it has dropped below zero! Also it gets very foggy out. It’s crazy! And the craziest thing is that we are going to be getting changes today or tomorrow! It DOES NOT feel like 6 weeks have passed by and I will admit it scares me.... but we are working great together! We had one of our investigators, Ramon, tell us that he accepted our invitation to be baptized and was asking questions about baptism and what it is about, and how. I call it "The 5 W´s of baptism" (Who can do it, where does it need to be done, when will we do it, why is it necessary, what is it for?). He doesn’t really have a testimony right now, so we are working on that, trying to help him find his testimony. One of his doubts is that he wants to go with his wife, but his wife gets bored. haha She likes churches where there is dancing, yelling, singing, praising things, very exciting,......(like Christ did in The Bible... I guess haha).

Another thing that happened is that my district is having A LOT of problems. They are having a hard time getting along and always needing help. But I am doing what I can, what is in my grasp to help them.

Yesterday we had a family home evening with a family who are a little less active, but their sons are inactive, We watched the new "Joseph Smith, The Prophet of the Restoration" and man, I love that movie. It just goes to show that he really was a prophet, and shows the things that he went through. That just gives me a boost of energy whenever we have the opportunity to watch it. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet. More than the spiritual witness from within, I know it is true. It just makes sense! Just read the Bible haha.

I have been studying continually El Libro de Mormon (O Livro de Mormon - en Portuguese) This morning I was reading Alma 42 and WOW it is full of things that are deep! The whole chapter is great but especially v.16-23 me encanta! The whole discourse that Alma gave to Corianton, his son, who was not the most faithful of missionaries so that his dad had to correct a few of his errors, then he gave a great talk about mercy and justice and how the atonement of Christ can feed both mercy and justice. It just makes so much sense through these scriptures. I love chapters 36 - 42 because they are the letters that Alma sent to his sons, and are worth our study. There are mixed topics and wonderful sermons.

That is a very awesome looking cake (at Ragan’s wedding). Jason’s dad sure knows how to make cakes. It looks more like a decoration than a dessert and I bet it would feel kinda bad cutting it haha.
Well I love you all and send my love! Thanks for everything.

Today we are having a bbq to commemorate the 4th of July. We have meat marinating as I write haha. Well, love you all!!!!

Love Elder Lucas Rodgers