Sunday, 28 October 2012

General Conference was INCREDIBLE - 8TH OCTOBER 2012

Family! GENERAL CONFERENCE WAS THE BEST EVER!! That announcement that missionaries can now leave at a younger age was awesome. I'm so pumped about that. The work will explode. Here, and in some other latin american countries, the missionaries could already leave at age 18.

Dad! That's quite a shame about your ticket, but not gonna lie, I laughed. How much was it? What was your favourite talk from conference?? There were so many great ones that I couldn't decide which was my favourite. I'm glad everyone had a good time. What's Zupas? I totally forgot about Thanksgiving with all the conference ruckus, and almost didn't eat at all yesterday haha. Luckily a member gave us some chicken nuggets and little potatoe tater tot things. Quite the Thanksgiving feast. Did you watch all the sessions? In my letter I'll talk about some of my favourite talks and stuff. That was really rude that you put that wretched number 9 in your email. I have a lot of time still left in my mission, and it's never gonna end. I was thinking a lot recently about how great of a dad you've always been. Thanks for always providing for us and being a good example. I always loved spending time with you and I'm really grateful for all you taught me. You've always been strong in the church and I admire your dedication. You never gave me an excuse to mess up and flake out. Thank you so much for that, because thanks to your example, I've been able to obtain my own testimony and my own conversion. I would like to hear more stories of the days of your youth (so long ago) and your mission, cause I don't know that much. Could you send me some cool stories or something? I love you so much Dad, you're the best!

Mum! Still haven't heard anything from you yet. I hope everything's good! I hope you manage to get an email out before I leave. I loved conference this weekend. It was my favourite conference ever. I wish it never ended. What were some of your favourite talks? Did you enjoy Utah? I bet it was cool seing Michael and stuff. They talked a lot about the family and stuff this conference which I liked. Thank you so much for all you've ever done in raising me and showing me a good example. You're spiritual sensitivity and missionary efforts have been an example to me in the mission field. I feel like I'm learning a lot about how the Spirit works. I love being here, and thank you for always supporting me. I think as a youth one always takes for granted what your parents do for you, because it's just expected, but I'm starting to see how big the sacrifices you made for me were. Thank you for dedicating yourself to raising us, even though at one point it meant stopping working during the day. Thank you for always having a strong testimony and helping me develop. I appreciate how, especially the last couple years before my mission, I could trust you with my problems and troubles and thoughts and you could always help me. I'm grateful for the time and the love you always gave to me. I love you tons Mum.

Michael! I can't belive you did a frontflip. That's awesome. Writing was my worst class in BYU too. It depends a lot on your professor, cause others said it was the easiest class ever. Who are your professors? Your friend has a rock climbing wall in her house??? That's ridiculous! What was your favourite session? I LOVED conference. You'll talk more about the second coming later? Bro, if you feel like you need to go, do it. If there's one thing I learned from General Conference, and from the prophet himself, we need to follow promptings immediately, without worrying what the results are. Remember that the Lord's will is the most important here. It'll be sad not seeing you, but if the Lord wants it, then do it. Just follow the Spirit and make sure the decision you take is what the Lord wants. I'm in the same ward, but there are 4 missionaries in this ward. We divided the boundaries of the ward so each companionship generally works on one half to save time and be more efficient. My new companion is awesome. Tell Trent congrats!!!!! That's crazy he's going to St. Louis. Love you Mike, I know you'll make the best decision. Read, pray, serve, and fast to have the Spirit. Love you!

Charly! I'm glad you loved the temple. It's so cool! Are you excited to perform in the cultural performance? Did you have a lot of fun in Utah? What was your favourite talk? Did that announcement make you want to serve a mission? Where did you sit in the conference? What kind of stuff do you have to do in the performance? I bet it's gonna be so cool. I wanna see videos and stuff. Love you Char!

Jake! Haven't heard from you, but I hope you're doing well! Wasn't conference awesome? What was you're favourite talk? Was that the first time you've been now? That's cool that you could be leaving on a mission in only 5 years. I'm so jealous you get to leave earlier. Love you Jakob!

This week was so awesome. I like working with my new companion, Elder Gómez. He's really awesome. I know we're going to have a great time together. He's always super motivated and loves talking with absolutely everyone. It's awesome. We have a lot of fun together and laugh a lot too which is great.

On Friday, we had an awesome leadership council in Chillán, and we learned a lot there. We reached our zone goal of 7 and actually got 9 baptisms last month. This month, our goal is 9. I couldn't go unfortunately, but Hector and Carolina got married!! They're getting baptized this weekend and so is Kassandra. It's gonna be great!!!

We are teaching a friend of some recent converts, who wants to get baptized. She's only 14, but has a lot of support from her friends. We had a family home evening with her and her mother this week with the convert family, and talked a lot about the family. She loved it. Then, they both went to general conference and loved it too. It was great. We prepared a lesson for them, and the mother, Cecilia, started out by saying that she supported her daughter and everything but already had her religion and wasn't going to change. For a second we lost hope, but thought that a missionary is powerful when faced with opposition. We followed our plan, and the Spirit was so strong. Cecilia accepted to read the Book of Mormon, and accepted the baptismal invitation, however without a date. It was a great experience. I trust more and more in our singular message to the world. The Spirit can really work miracles.

General Conference was INCREDIBLE! I have never enjoyed conference so much as I did this week. I got to watch it in English with some other missionaries. It's way better that way. I understand it in Spanish, but it's not the same when we don't hear their same voices. I loved the new missionary announcement. I think it'll be way better. I think a lot more missionaries will go out to serve and it'll bring great results. I'm gonna talk about my very favourite talks only, cause there are so many that I loved.

Elder Ballard on Saturday afternoon gave a great talk about how we should be like bees. I loved how he said that small acts of service can bring us closer to the Lord and give us more of His Spirit. I learned a lot from that . He said we need to spread our testimony from our mind to our heart by praying so that the Lord can guide us to people in need. A big theme from conference was conversion, and how acting on what we know is what really converts us, and plants our testimony in our hearts. If we want the Spirit more, we have to act more on our knowledge.

I also loved Elder Robert C. Gay's talk about what we are willing to do to give up our soul. "Would you sell your soul for a nickel?" It confirmed a lot of some of my promptings recently about the importance of teaching about eternal life as I teach investigators, and not just focusing on their temporal needs. It made me think a lot about what is really more important in life, and prioritizing. I want to live and teach that more.

Elder Neil L. Anderson's talk was incredible. If we want to know the true doctrine to church, it's not hard to find. Trials are designed to help us grow, but can destroy us if we aren't prepared. To prepare we need to study the scriptures, pray, serve, fast, and never leave the church. I want to pray for more trials, because through trials we can really grow. Trials are the best learning experiences.

Anthony D. Perkins in Priesthood session talked about 6 principles do deepen conversion. Prayer, Study, Participate in ordinances, Showing love, Tithing, and Chastity. Very simple but very powerful. we can't affort to let our guard down at all, even if we think we will never fall.

President Monson in Priesthood talked about we need to see people as the changed people they can become, and really trust in that atoning power. I need to see everyone in white as a missionary. I loved that talk. It strengthened my testimony of the atonement.

I loved Henry B. Eyring's talk on Sunday also about how God never hides from us. We need to be willing to accept the Lord's will and timing. Sometimes we want things done our way, but we have to be willing to do things His way in order to grow. He knows what we really need a lot more than we do.

Elder Holland's talk was incredible too. He's given a talk really similar to missionaries in the MTC before. I love when he talks about Peter and his progress. It's so awesome. It made me think, why do I serve, and how much do I love the Lord? I loved it. The Lord did so much for us, and He needs our hearts now.

Russell T. Osguthorpe was awesome too. He talked about how conversion is the goal of teaching. It made me think about my own teaching as a missionary, and how I need to teach key doctrine, relate it to their lives, invite to action, and promise blessings.

David A. Bednar's talk was incredible. I never thought of that distinction between testimony and conversion. It was so cool. A testimony is gained by searching and asking, but conversion comes through the application of the received testimony. By living the gospel, we change bit by bit, and give our whole heart to the Lord. A testimony is not enough to protect us. I've seen that so much. Many people with testimonies aren't converted because they choose not to apply the teachings of the gospel. When we do so with a willing heart, we see a change.

Some promptings I felt during the conference were the importance of re-living the first principles and ordinances of the gospel constantly. Faith, repentance, baptism (sacrament), and holy ghost. By doing so, we will constantly change and become more like Jesus Christ. We will be worthy of the Holy Ghost, and will experience a change of heart and be converted. I've been feeling a lot recently that it is important to converse with the Lord in my prayers. I feel like as I do so, I will be blessed in every aspect.

Basically this week was a huge spiritual feast. I wish I could feel like that always. I'm striving to always feel like that in my studies. I love this church and this gospel. I love the Saviour. I know He lives and restored His church through Joseph Smith. This is the truth. I know it, because the Holy Ghost has testified to me. I love serving here. I never want it to end.

Thanks for all your love and support. I hope you loved conference as much as I did, and I hope you keep sharing the gospel!! I love you all!!


Elder Blomfield