Week 68: Priesthood Blessings

San Martin

THIS WEEK! IT was a cool week!!

We’ve been searching for good investigators to teach. We did intercambios (exchanges) with the assistant which was really good. Elder Teeples and I learned a ton. We were able to find a family of like 15 at least. Literally when we were in the lesson like 4 people came out of each room. I counted a ton of people… we were able to teach a lot of them it was a good lesson! They told us some of their kids were going to be baptized before but they never did in the end…wow, it was a miracle finding them!

The other thing of the week was in the morning when we woke up we heard some babies crying. So we went outside to where we where hearing the voice and they ended up being two cats that sound like humans. They were on the roof and pretty cranky and suddenly they started attacking each other! Funniest thing of my life seeing that. They were screamng so loud.

Apart from that I was sick for half the week! But I learned a valuable lesson. Over a year ago when I was set apart as a missionary I remember receiving the blessing from my stake president that health problems would never affect my ability to work. After a year of the mission I saw that promise being kept because to that point I had never  had to stay in the pension for being sick. That day I was in intercambios with an Elder and I was feeling super sick like it was impossible to leave. But they had a few appointments in their area so I decided to try it out.

We left to the appointments and I felt horrible.. BUT, as we got to the lessons, after saying the first prayer immediately the stomach pain went away and the spirit was with us throughout the whole lesson. After we left the pain came back but bearable to keep working. That was such a miracle. The first half of the day I had spent in the pension thinking I was never going to be able to do it. But now I realize it was just a lack of faith to that priesthood blessing I received. There is so much power and miracles in the priesthood!!

I love the gospel! By the way im feeling great now! back to 100 percent! I love you and miss you so much.

THIS thanksgiving im especially grateful for the Savior and my family. Both have inspired me so much to be able to progress to the point I’m at today! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

Love Elder Skonnard

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Week 67: Lauty’s Baptism!

San Martin

HELLO!!!

It was a good week! Lauty got baptized! I was so happy about that!! Well, this week was pretty slow. Basically the whole week we prepared for our open chapel event. It ended up pretty good, but few people came since its not really in the center of any city. Bummer! The good thing from this week was that we were able to talk too many of the members and get to know them, which resulted in a lot of references. Some of the members in the ward are super excited to work. We had some spiritual lessons, a few with new investigators. We met them and taught them at the house of a member we were visiting. They seem super interested in the message and in learning more.

We taught an investigator Daniela, which was a great lesson. She’s gone from smoking 40 cigs a day to 1 or 2 a day. So much progress with her, and she shared her testimony with us about the Book of Mormon. She knows it’s true and has a lot of potential to be baptized! Not much else new, just getting to know the area and members. I still miss my last area a ton!! It’s not the same.

Love you all and have a great week!

Week 66: The Hardest Transfers

San Juan

This week was the hardest week of my life. wowoowowowo. I was shipped to Mendoza and it was SO sad. I fell in love with the people there. Everyone was my family. We had 2 baptisms planned for the next weekend and 4 for the month, but sadly I won’t be able to see them. I had to leave probably my best friend from the mission, Walter el traico. so sad. I cried so much yesterday hahaha.

But well yesterday I met my new comp and area. Elder Teeples is excited and fresh in the field ready to work and see miracles. We basically don’t have any investigators or progress so we are going to be starting from scatch again.  BUT SUPER EXCITED TO WORK!!!!

Throughout the week we taught many of our investigators and saw a lot of progress. We committed Lautaro and Joana to baptism for the next week and made all the plans. Lauty already finished all of the lessons, but had to wait til the next week so his dad could be there and baptize him. We started teaching maycol again and he is more committed than ever now to the gospel. He passed through some hard trails and we shared with him a church video that impacted him so much. It was a spiritual lesson. He wants to be baptized and change his life. We were able to begin teaching Monica again, who had been struggling with her husband to be able to come to church. But she decided to put god first and started with the lessons again. We were so happy for her. Lautaro, Joana, and Monica all came to church and Maycol too (after it already ended hahaha)  It was SUCH a good week.

We did service for a family and moved a mound of dirt out of their sidewalk. It took a lot longer than we thought. Like 3 hours.

Walter and Seba, my best friends, came with us the whole week to our lessons. it was amazing.

We received transfer calls and I passed away when I heard I was leaving……

At church I said my goodbyes to everyone and Walter came with us on monday to help us with the suitcases and send me off.

that day i tried to keep my spirits up as we met the new area and people!!!

we should have a lot of success.

HAVE AN AMAZING WEEK!

ELDER SKONNARD

Week 65: A Cool Week

San Juan

OKAY, This was a cool week.

We ALMOST had a baptism.

We had interviews with our mission president this week. They were pretty interesting. He helped us realize our investigators can be baptized faster than we think. All they need to be able to do is be able to pass the baptismal interview. That changed my perspective a little bit, usually we would wait until they were super super prepared for baptism… but now I think we are going to start having more baptisms.

Other than that we had many lessons and an activity. These new investigators we have been teaching are super prepared. An 18 year old who already has his house and his family and he just happened to be searching for religion when we showed up at his house. They are super prepared and an awesome family. They have been keeping all the commitments and should be baptized in a few weeks. (if they get married :))

I did a super cool interview for a super cool dude who is 11, and is holding up his family trying to get them to church. He was baptized last Saturday, and on Sunday his mom had to leave and he was SO mad he had to go. Haha what an awesome kid.

That was the week! Oh and this morning we gave liberty to some pidgeons!

Elder Skonnard

Week 64: Progress in San Juanino

San Juan

THIS WEEK!

It’s been a successful week! Elder Aguilar and I are having a lot of progress with our investigators! They still aren’t coming to church, but we’ve been finding and teaching a ton of investigators. Right now we have a pool of probably about 50 investigators. A lot who probably won’t progress but also a lot with potential to be baptized! We are working hard! It was a fast week!

Like the last week, we had some days of extreme success and a few days where the appointments just kept falling through. The good thing is, we didn’t let that discourage us too much. We were able to endure and see some success.

This week I did an intercambios with Elder McCausland, el gallo. It was amazing! The best intercambios I’ve had in the mission. He came to my area and we had like 6 lessons that day. It was super successful and we both learned a lot. He’s a district leader in the other area now.

My eardrum burst last week so a bunch of crap kept coming out of my ear, and I couldnt hear anything for a few days. Walter, probably my best friend from the ward took some medical classes so he fixed my ear. And now its back to normal 🙂

Besides all of that , nothing new happened. Just 2 elders trying to support a San Juanino ward.

Oh and Lauty came to church yesterday!!!

Elder Skonnard

Week 63: Finding Success through the Lord

San Juan

MY WEEK! What a rollercoaster this week! Monday was pretty interesting. We had a special transfer and our trio was split up. Now its just me and Elder Aguilar here in this ward! It has been a fun week!

It was pretty interesting, every other day was a switch between incredible success and complete failure! haha. It was a spiritual whirlwind. We started off the week on a good note, we found some new investigators and where able to teach a lot of progressing investigators. One family, The Pereiras, are a less active family who have a boy whose not baptized. He understands like an adult everything. We had a spiritual lesson of the restoration and showed them the video of Joseph Smith’s vision. I think it impacted them. However, they didn’t make it to church this Sunday…

For the next few days we struggled. It was hard for us to find any success whatsoever. We couldn’t teach hardly anyone throughout the whole day. At the end of Friday we were begging to the Lord for a turn around.

Saturday was probably one of the busiest, and most successful days of my mission. We taught so many lessons! Appointment after appointment. It was such a turn around. It showed me when we humble ourselves, the Lord blesses us immensely.

Then Sunday was mothers day, no investigators came. They celebrate Mother’s Day big here in Argentina. It made me think of my mom, who has helped me grow as a person so much. I owe everything I am to my mom! Love you Mom!

That was the week! love you all!

Elder Skonnard

Week 62: A Few Highlights

San Juan

Well I just realized I’m low on time, but I’m going to tell you the two highlights!

We are teaching the little brothers of our mission leader who aren’t members! They are twins and are going to be baptized on the 28th of October! They are 14 and are awesome, they came to church last sunday and are excited! That was the good part of the week!

Now the sad part. We had an investigator named Maycol, he was progressing a ton. We were actually planning for his baptism this saturday. But suddenly, he has to move to the south for the army and he leaves saturday morning! What a terrible coincidence! We were obviously super sad but hopefully the missionaries over there take care of him!

Other than that we had a pretty normal week. Seba, our mission leader basically came with us every day! He misses the mission a little bit haha. Super fun!

Today were going to spend a few hours at the San Juan river!

Love you all and have an amazing week!

Week 61: General Conference!

San Juan

This week!

We had transfers on Monday, Elder Bigley is now my comp and now were in a trio with Elder Aguilar. He arrived in the afternoon and its been a pretty fun week together! We’ve had a ton to do figuring out which investigators to focus on since the area combined with another area. But its been fun and hard work! The sad part is that we didn’t have like any set appointments with our investigators so it was basically contacting them the whole week and we ended up only being able to teach like 4 or 5 lessons.

The highlights of this week were the general conference and the “district” meeting we had. It was basically a zone meeting because everyone from the zone was at that meeting, (besides Jachal). It was great, we got to know each other from the new people who arrived and were all super energized to get working! I have a ton of hope for our zone this month! We should achieve wonderful things!

We only had a few lessons this week, a few with some new investigators we found. The others with some investigators who have stopped progressing a little bit. We taught the third lesson but they were distracted with the kids, it was hard for the spirit to be present. We weren’t able to help them very much but luckily they said they would come to the conference.

The conference was amazing! We almost kept the tradition with the doughnuts but since there arent any here, we bought churros instead. It made me feel super sick because of all the oil it has greased on to it, but it was so worth it! My favorite talk was obviously from Elder Callister. Picture me sitting in my chair shaking uncontrolably from excitement. That was me during that talk. The book of mormon is the best, I love that book! I learned of the importance of reading it every day and of following the prophet’s inspiring council. We can’t take a revelatory prophet like President Monson for granted! We just can’t! We have to listen to him!

None of the investigators we are teaching came, but the awesome members brought their friends and 3 new people got to get to know the church and watch the conference. We made plans with them after. The members are a huge help!

Love you all and miss you so much! Have an amazing week!

Elder Skonnard

Week 60: Transfers!

San Juan

This week was great! We got transfer calls. My companion left and now im in a trio with Elder Bigley and Elder Aguilar, both gringos! It’s gonna be super fun, Elder Bigley was already in the pension of 4 and now hes staying with me as a comp! they closed one of the areas in the ward so now theres only 3 of us to cover the whole ward! We have so much to do now!

Elder Machado the Brazilian Elder I helped me learn a lot of things, especially in the christlike attributes that I have realized I need to work on! All the members were super sad to see him go…

This last week we were able to find a ton of more investigators. We spent our time in a few neighborhoods “alejados” and many people were able to listen to our message. The members helped us and came with us to the appointments we had with our progressing investigators. We had a lesson with the 3 girls who had came to church the other week, and it was a little unprepared so it seemed like the whole time we had no idea what to teach or to say! It was a nightmare! But thanks to the spirit, we were able to help them understand the importance of reading the Book of Mormon. It seems like were going to start all over again the lessons because we don’t feel like they were understanding when we were teaching them! It should be a good transfer, we have a lot of potential baptisms!

 

Our district and zone has a ton of amazing missionaries. Our district now consists of our trio and 2 elders who are opening a new area super north in San Juan that has never heard anything about the church. They are 2 machines, and our going to help our zone so much. Elder Tyler is one of them who was my comp in La Consulta and an x zone leader. And Elder Rawle who was my zone leader in San Luis! We are going to be doing intercambios there because they’re in our district.

Love you all have an amazing week!

Elder Skonnard!

 

Week 59: Christlike Attributes

San Juan

HEEEY!

Super slow week! I’ve got nothing much to share because we’ve been in the pension ALL week! Elder Machado was sick so he wasn’t feeling it. I did a few intercambios this week with some of the Elders from the zone which was super fun!

First I went to the other area of the zone and I went with Elder Velasco. He’s an awesome missionary and I loved working with him. The highlight of all of that was the lesson we had that evening. A family that has a son who isn’t baptized yet has been inactive for 5 years. We had a super spiritual lesson with them and committed them to coming this Sunday to church! it was a super spiritual and uplifting lesson.

The other lesson we had this week was in our area. We invited a few members to come with us to visit our investigators who are progressing. They were able to connect with each other and become friends which will help so much, the members are super nice and willing to help us. My favorite area I’ve been in! This family has come to church but are still struggling to gain a testimony.

Our investigator Monica, who was going to be baptized this week, dropped us 😦 Super solid investigator, but her husband doesnt want her to keep meeting with us or let her come to church. It was a sad day. But something out of our control, we are thinking about trying to go and talk with her husband but he is super closed to our church and the missionaries. So well see what happens……:(

Overall it was a good week in terms of what I have learned. I’ve had a ton of time to study and learn more about Christ. This transfer I learned so much that I can grow a lot in my patience and empathy. Two attributes of Christ that are so important. I’m thankful for the oportunity we have to learn and grow everyday and become more like Christ! I love the Lord and I love this gospel!

Have an amazing week!

Elder Skonnard

 

Week 58: The Atonement!

San Juan

This week was great!

I think the funnest part and highlight of the week were the conferences we had. It took up most of the week.

First of all, I had an intercambios with the AP and learned so much. The biggest thing I learned from his example is that i need to walk faster haha. Something super small but saves so much time! haha. It was super fun and we had a ton of success in that day working together.

We had a zone conference, I was able to do a training for the zone and I talked about listening and resolving doubts. It was good and I hope it was able to help us achieve understanding of the importance of listening to our investigators. I learned so much studying that.! It changed my perspective!

We had a stake conference with the huge chimbas stake. President Zanni asked me and the other zone leader Elder Richardson to do a capacitation in the priesthood session. We separated in a room with our mission president, stake president, all the bishops, and mission leaders from the ward. Elder Richardson and I talked about key points of the missionary work that we can improve together with the members especially with effective meetings and goals with plans. We achieved the vision of helping them understand the importance of having a ward mission plan! I think that’s going to change member missionary work so much! I loved doing that! highlight of the week by far.

This week I learned even more deeply than I had previously about the atonement. I studied a lot about Christ and I am blown away by how willing he was to make the decision to atone for our sins. If you our having problems or challenges throughout the week, I invite you to study more deeply His atonement. Trust me it helps!

Love you all and miss you so much!

Week 57: Capilla Abierta

San Juan

This week has been great! 4 people came to church, our investigators are progressing, and we’re hoping for a few baptisms this month! Our main investigator, Monica, has to wait a few more weeks to be able to be baptized because of a stake conference next week, but she is super excited and super prepared!!

Nothing much really happened this week. For half the week we were in Mendoza in a Leadership Counsel and in the end, there were a lot of changes made to the mission. We are now going to be doing all of the studies in the morning and working the siesta. In the end its going to give us a lot more time do work and be more effective but it has been a challenge in getting the mission see the vision…haha.

We found fewer people this week, but the good news is, our investigators came to church this week! It was such a tender mercy. In our ward the last hour is sacrament meeting and we called the family and sent them a message to see if they were coming. They came late, but were able to enjoy the last 30 minutes of testimony meeting! They are awesome, they still havent accepted a baptismal date but have true intent and this week I have faith they will accept to be baptized.

We had a capilla abierta this week, which was an activity with the ward to invite everyone to come see the church from the inside and it turns into a ton of references. We got the whole zone to come and help us present the organizations. Elder McCausland and I left to go bring people in the church. We talked to so many people in those few hours hahaha. We were in the end we only ended up getting about 8-10 people to go in but Elder Mccausland was telling me that out of all the capilla abiertas he had done they had only gotten 1 person to come in, so i think that was a pretty big success! A lot of good references from that event it was awesome!

Those were the highlights of the week!

Love you all!

Elder Skonnard