Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Ward Conference...a great spirit prevails

The above photo goes with cutlines at very end. Lost photo from uploaded it again.
We're happy to be a part of the Palermo Ward, Belgrano Stake, Buenos Aires, Argentina.

Priesthood power as the stake presidency and bishopric gather for a post-ward-conference meeting. They shared messages of hope and love for the Saviour and for the Restored Gospel.

A brand new convert given a Church calling like President Hinckley counseled. Gathering the new hymn books just purchased for the ward conference. Step by step...

Newly reactivated husband of gal who did the crafts with the ward conference theme. His whole countenance becomes better each week. Yes, the Gospel brings peace, joy, and happiness into the lives of members.

Just survey voted for cutlines below the photos (the ones after this I forgot and put on top...since the first photos we put in start from bottom up).

Here are some of the ten young single adult choir who began and ended the ward conference. They are in primary presidencies, and YW presidencies. Great young men and women.

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Cutlines on top from here: Shy Sonia from Peru, who is blossoming like the flowers she has, as our new Relief Society President since May; and (I'll have to look up her name), newly reactived family, who made all the darling passout crafts with the ward conference theme; she also teaches one of the Relief Society classes.
Three generations of Church members in Argentina: Grandmother Maria Pilar (in R.S. presidency), Daughter Marcela (our wonderful Gospel Doctrine teacher), Granddaughter Zoe, who is learning to stay by her parents during Sacrament Meeting and not run around so much.

Walt got a good photo of the pizzas being cooked and cut in the kitchen. Elder Allred had gone in to get Reva Lou's banana bread pan. The three gals who make things happen in the ward, L-R: Nora (in charge of the Talent Night, and a past Relief President), Sonia (from Peru, our current R.S. President), and Magdalena, our recently released Relief Society President. We love our ward members!These are cutlines for the photo at top:
Yes, even we ward Sr. Missionaries sang at the Talent Show, the night before ward conference: "I hope they call me on a mission...."all verses. Everyone had a good laugh when we changed the ending to "...when I am retired."

In Spanish it rhymed. Everyone had a good laugh

Saturday, September 26, 2009

This week's comings and goings in our mission...

"Seven Steps to Inviting the Spirit" was the message from Elder Zivic (to my right), the first counselor in our area presidency and a member of the First Quorum of the Seventy, when he taught the Sr. Missionaries at our monthly zone conference. He has a very strong spirit and speaks excellent English. He is a native Argentine, so lives in his home here in Buenos Aires for this assignment.
His message was adapted from one by Elder Gene R. Cook.
I. Invite the Spirit through Prayer
D&C 42:13-14
Alma 26:22
D&E 29:1-2
II. Invite the Spirit by using the Scriptures
D&C 18:34-36
Helaman 15:7-8
III. Invite the Spirit through Testimony
D&C 100:5-8
2Nephi 33:1-2
Alma 34:8
IV. Invite the Spirit using Hymns
1 Samuel 16:23
D&C 25:12
Matthew 26:30 (Mark 14:26)
V. Invite the Spirit by Expressing Love and Gratitude to God and Man
1John 4:8, 16
1Nephi 11:21-23
Moroni 7:47-48
John 13:34-35
VI. Invite the Spirit by sharing Spiritual Experiences
D&C 50:21-22
Helaman 8:11-13
Alma 12:9-10
VII. Invite the Spirit through Priesthood Blessings
James 5:14-16
Moroni 3:2
D&C 42:44
D&C 75:18-19
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I'm taking a straw poll survey: Do you like the cutlines above or below the photo?
The ones above are below the photo; the ones below are above the photo. Got that?!
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Elder y Hna. Allred went with us grocery shopping this morning. We're the only area couple with a car, so we're happy to give rides to the other Sr. Missionary couples. They are area welfare missionaries...and go home about November 16 to West Jordan, Utah. We both live in the Sinclair Apartment Building and trade off hosting Sunday dinners after our Palermo Ward
9-noon block.
"Saturday is a special day, it's the day we get ready for Sunday..." as we grocery shop at Jumbo's. We got lots of bottles of purified water. We're starting to get some goodies for when Janie, Daniel, Katie, and Heidi come in 11 days! Yipee.... This looked like a sweet family crossing the road by our haircutting place...which is just a 1/4 block from our area office. Now if we'd been a "Sister Aimee Fisher" we'd have chased them down to ask them about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and how they can be a family together forever. We'll pray our young missionaries--whom Dr. Petersen keeps healthy and strong--will find them and teach them these truths.
Then it was time for our once every 4-weeks haircuts...
After a 4-hour search at different places for a recliner...which were all priced from 3,000 to 7,000 pesos (exchange rate now is 3.8 pesos to the dollar)...we decided it was not cost effective for the little bit extra length sleep I'd get in one. As we got back close to the office, we had lunch at Mc'Ds.
We saw a dog walker on the drive back... (opps, lost photo...I'll put it back in later...)
Driving Elder T to the mission home...his mission president on the left...
Right after this photo is when I fell walking up the cobble-stone terraced steps to the mission home (you can see walk on left side of photo). Luckily, I only got some bruises and had a sore right hand for a couple of days.
Walt and President Argyle were helping put the Elder's luggage in the mission president's SUV when I was on the steps. Walt came dashing over to rescue me, and help me up. He will always be my "knight in shining armor!"
Missionary goodbyes... when we picked up Elder T Wednesday at his apartment for the 45-minute drive to the mission home for his farewell luncheon, temple session, and drive to the airport.
They did their testimony meeting with their converts invited on Sunday night at the mission office.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fed the missionaries last night...

We had tacos/taco salad, but I had hurried and mixed a batch of dough to have cinnamon rolls and hot rolls to send home with them. Walt just added this comment: "The highlight for Sister Petersen is when she spoils the missionaries."
I also sent the last container of homemade frozen strawberry jam with them to have with the rolls. Oh, and I had made a batch of chocolate chip cookies, which they also got to take the rest home.The new Elder on the left who is replacing the Elder on the right...whom we're on our way this morning to pick up to take to the mission home for his farewell interview with his mission president. He is going home to Sandy, Utah.
The new Elder asked: "So do we get to eat here every night?"
"Just once a month, Elder," was my reply.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

More on Elder Petersen's health visit to North Paraguay...

Walt had some time to be in on some of the meetings in the Church. He said after the meetings at the Church they handed out dry biscuits to the little children which they treasured as if they were candy. Makes me realize we take our abundant, delicious food for granted! I am grateful for all that we and our family have been blessed with. And thankful for the Gospel that blesses the lives of so many throughout the world.
Here is Dr. Petersen with the non-medical person who helps take care of the health clinic. This is on Wednesday afternoon when he is getting ready to see patients. He saw 23 that afternoon, then 32 the next day.
Hna. Wade had packed them a lunch, which they stopped and ate along the way. There were 3 vehicles that were loaded with medicines and things to take to the Nivacle Indian members. Elder Petersen rode with President Wade. He said it was 38C that first day. (I think that's close to 100 degrees F.) The two Sisters were from the Church Employment Service Office to help teach about finding jobs. President Wade's mission presidency secretary went, and his two assistants.
This is what the road was like for most of the 5-hour drive. Somewhere along the line we had been told it was a dirt road most of the way. The dirt road was just 2 km off the main paved road over to Abundancia (which is Spanish for Bountiful).
Walt is always intersted in how things are being built--remember both his father and my father were carpenters in Idaho. The man holding that rope in the background is pulling up a bucket of cement (he said the bucket is on the ground hidden by that car). Then the other man on the top will work with the cement. This is across the road from the Paraguay Asuncion North Mission Office.
He was overwhelmed on takeoff Tuesday night seeing the expanse of the 13-million size city of Buenos Aires lit up. He has three photos like this to show all he saw from the window of the airplane.

Friday, September 18, 2009

He's back...hurrah

Dr. Petersen is 4th from the right; President Wade, 2nd from right, is president of the Paraguay Asuncion North Mission. I'll find out the rest later...right now I'm going to talk with my Sweetheart about his 3-day trip to help in the Health Clinic for the Nivacle Indians.
He took 97 photos--which may have broken my record for a 3-day trip! Walt said he had a great trip to Paraguay to help in the Nivacle Indians' Health Clinic.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Zone Conference #5 of 5... then Elder Petersen leaves on special assignment...

The mission president took this photo of us as we were leaving. He let us do our presentation right after his talk at the start of zone conference. We had seen six missionaries before the z.c. started, and two right after our presentation. So we saw over half of the 14 missionaries in this zone. We left a touch after 12:00 noon, and made it to our apartment by 5:00...leaving a little over an hour for Walt to repack for his 4 days in Paraguay. The remis taxi picked him up at 6:45, and his flight went out at 10:10.
Today he was scheduled to make the early-morning drive with the Paraguay Asuncion North Mission President and his two counselors to the Neocleve Indians. President Wade said it was a 5-hour drive over bad roads to the northern, wilderness-type area of the country. Dr. Petersen has been given special permission to help re-establish the health clinic for these Indians there.
He took the camera, so we'll share some of his photos next week.
I'm not sure if he was missing me already, but he called twice after he left the apartment before his plane took off last night.
After the zone conference my sweetheart of a husband suggested we take an extra 15 minutes and drive in the 2 miles from the road to let us get a photo on the beach of the Atlantic Ocean.
Remember, I mentioned I had left my camera Friday at the mission home, so I didn't have it Monday night when we stayed by this scene.
The mission president brought my camera to the Tuesday zone conference, so we did get a photo after all. Not the pretty Cancun turquoise water and white sand, but it is a beach and an ocean.
These puppies flocked around our car as we were ready to leave. The tiny Church at Mar del Ajo' had small classrooms, and a small chapel. This southern-most zone had 4 Sister missionaries

Some more of zone conferences in the B.A. South Mission...

Zone Conference 4: Did we mention: "We love to be with missionaries!"
Zone Conference 4: Of their 200 missionaries, 30 are Sisters...which is more sisters than we've seen in any of the missions. The middle sister of the ones kneeling is the one from Rexburg.
Sisters are great missionaries and work very hard!
Day 4: Mission President's wife with two Hermanas...can you believe the middle sister is from Rexburg and her brother Spencer was Katie's ballroom dance partner for a couple of years. Small world! Day 3: Sweet Hermana from Ecuador came to zone conference in her native dress.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

We love to be with missionaries...

The area medical advisor takes very good care of missionaries... We especially love Sister missionaries...
If I had my camera...I'd also be posting a photo of us with the waves of the Atlantic Ocean behind us. We drove south 4 1/2 hours yesterday to Costa de Este, a small town on the east side of Argentina's southern Atlantic coast.
However, since I left my camera in the mission home Friday evening after our #4 zone conference, I've been in withdrawal the past 3 days.
We had a fun Sr. Missionary Couple outing on Saturday -- no photos.
We had stake conference Saturday evening, Sunday morning -- no photos.
Monday we had a fun drive out into the country side to the ocean -- no photos.
I thank the person who invented the camera...I've really been missing mine.
The mission president is bringing it today when we rendezvous with him for the #5 and final zone conference for the Argentina Buenos Aires South Mission.
It's nice listening to the waves as I sit for a while at four o'clock this morning to let my back pain ease so I can sleep a little more before we're up and on our way for the 20-minute drive on over to the stake center in Mar del Ajo.
We do love to be with missionaries who truly are bringing the world the truths of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We are thankful for the Savior's Atonement for each of us. We pray we will do our part in helping prepare for His Glorious Second Coming.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

The zone conference that was--Day 1

At the end of zone conference, an ingrown toenail usually attracts a crowd. The Elder asked his companion to come in and was okay with others coming to cheer him on.
When I saw him before zone conference, I asked: "Elder_____, how is your toe?"
He asked back: "How did you know about my toe?"
"Well, you were just in the office yesterday and had Dr. Petersen take care of it," I answered.
"Oh, that must have been my twin brother," he laughed.
Yes, he has a twin in another Buenos Aires Mission -- can you belive they both had ingrown toenails at the same time, same foot: the right, and same side of the toe?!
I've heard of twins being so much alike....but this is something else!
The missionaries are grateful for Elder Petersen taking such good care of them.

A nice morning drive...

After a 1hour 20 minute drive in heavy traffic, arriving at 8:59 a.m., and sitting in our car in front of the stake center ten minutes with no one in site, Walt called the mission president, and I heard:
"We think we're at the right stake center, but no one is around."
Then I hear, "Oh, I must have written it down wrong. No problem, President, we needed a dry run anyway to be sure of how to get here."
The zone conference was the next day.
So we'll be heading back along the same route this morning.
We are amazed at the network of the 4-high stacked overpasses every time we come back into the city. They don't really show up well in the photo.

Monday, September 7, 2009

Missionaries are miracles...

We love missionaries! We will be teaching "Missionary Health and Safety" at 6 zone conferences in the next 9 days for the Argentina Buenos Aires South Mission, along with Elder Petersen talking in private consultation with any who have health concerns. I will be keeping a record of everything, plus running the power point presentation, while Dr. Petersen teaches from it in Spanish.
This will be our 9th or 10th mission of the 14 we have been invited by the mission presidents to visit in our South America South Area of Argentina, Paraguay, and Uruguay.
These missionaries are from a different mission of the three missions within the city.
Elder-Dr. Petersen made a house call Sunday evening, a 30-minute drive each way from our apartment to the center of this 13-million people capital city of Argentina--Buenos Aires. People, people everywhere--walking, going down under the ground to take the subway, in taxis, riding buses, traveling via city trains, or driving cars!
We have a continual prayer for safety when we drive, and a continual prayer of thanks for the positive protection in the congested, fast-paced traffic. These young Elders appreciated the freshly cut pineapple and the banana bread we brought to them. I apologized that it wasn't the best banana bread I'd ever made, but they assured me that any food is welcomed by them.
Notice the picture of the Savior over the map of their area where they will search for His lost lambs. These are the posters they have on their walls in their apartments.
They may not always get their beds made, but they get the job done of doing the Lord's work--6:30 a.m. to 10:30 p.m. day in and day out of preparing and going out into the world to find people to whom they bring the eternal blessings of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His temple ordinances.
On preparation day--usually on Monday from 6:30a.m. to 5:00 p.m, they exercise, study, maybe join in a friendly game of soccer or basketball with other missionaries in their district, wash and iron their clothes, clean their apartment, grocery shop, e-mail a letter to their Mom & Dad, maybe write a few letters to brothers and sisters, and a close friend, or a missionary buddy in another country, before putting that white shirt and tie back on to go back out finding and teaching at 5:00 p.m.
Occasionally--they even put their white shirt and tie on earlier on P-Day and go with their zone on an outing to a cultural site in their area of the world, or if they have a temple close enough, do a temple session. (P.S. This is not the bed of the two missionaries pictured...there were two beds in the "living room" for the other two Elders who live in the 1-br apt. Dr. Petersen said their beds were neatly made when he went in to check on the surgery site.)

Saturday, September 5, 2009

A mission has many aspects...

We are so thankful for the Atonement of the Savior for all of us. We pray we will serve this mission with honor and help show the Lord our gratitude by magnifying our callings here. Serving a mission has many aspects. And the Prophets even counsel us that having some wholesome recreation helps rejuvenate us. I always love it when my sweetheart comes up with an idea for a Friday "date night," as he did last night. Walt saw a missionary with a health concern, then spent several hours dealing with a complicated health problem with another missionary via several phone calls, (even missing Chinese Friday) then drove over to a health clinic for a Sr. Missionary. I could tell he was having a stressful day when he said at 6:30: "I have an idea. Let's wind up here in the office [we were getting ready for the 5 zone conferences we'll we attending the next two weeks for the Argentina Buenos Aires South Mission] then go to the apartment, pop some popcorn and watch "Hoosiers." Watching a basketball movie of the sport he loves the most helps him unwind. We left the office at 8:55...and yes, we popped some corn and watched the DVD. We always enjoy seeing it again. Thursdayfternoon we had driven the Walls out with us to do a temple session. Our temple here is closing November 1 for an extensive 18-mo to 2-year expansion remodel, so we're trying to get there as often as possible before that. It was a small session with just two men and four women, but it's always good to feel the peace and calmness in the temple. The Allreds had been working in their apartment Wednesday on a "Food Storage" presentation for Saturday, so hadn't gotten into their daily missionary attire clothes yet when we took Alejandro & Monica to lunch. We took our friends to "Kansas, which advertises the best beef in Buenos Aires" for lunch on their last day before flying back to their hometown of Mexico City. They gave us each a little remembrance gift. What a sweet, young couple! It was a rainy day. The "Santa Rosa" which are the rains that they say start the end of August actually started September 1 and it has rained every day since. We both love the rain. But we could still see our fun 25 skyscraper skyline out our window...though not all the buildings are visible in the photo through the rain clouds. Oh, yes, and I caught the train this time--which isn't hard to do since one going in either direction goes by every 10 to 15 and night. B.A. is a busy city ! Keeping warm in my fuzzy bathrobe while sitting at the computer off and on throughout the night for 20-30-min stretches while my back recoups to be able to lie back down. I let my back settle down while Dad showers, so I can stand long enough to shower.Finally, on the sixth photo I got him to smile a little bit after his 40-min exercise. I so miss going up to our 8th floor exercise room with him each morning after we we're up at 6:30. They have such great equipment to work out on. He dislikes exercising but is obedient to the missionary rule to exercise 30 min 6 days a week: 20 min cardiovascular, then rotating days of 10 min strength training with flexibility. Then we did 10 min of back exercises in addition.
However, as we were walking in to the temple Thursday, he told me his back had started hurting that day. "It must be contagious," he added.
At ages 75 and 70, we're falling apart piece by piece.
We'll take it one day at a time till our mission's end:
March 30, 2010
Just another day way doooown south. And now I'm going back to bed to get the missionary required 8 hours nightly sleep.