Tuesday, March 31, 2015

3/23/15 - 16

Hello Family and Friends. Today is the 23rd of March, 2015. Time is just flying. This Wednesday are changes, but the lucky thing is that I know that I am staying because I am training Elder Zamora. I love the people here, the ward I am in, the people I have met and I am very grateful. 
This week was very eventful. I am going to write a shorter email today due to time. In my mission up till now we have baptized 160 people this month of March. The goal that we have for this month is 204 and if we reach it, it will be the first time that this mission, or any Paraguayan mission has ever baptized more than 200 people in a month. WE are praying, working hard, and doing all that we can to help others come unto Christ.

We have been teaching quite a few people here in Barrio Obrero and we are trying to help them come unto Christ and be baptized so that they can qualify for eternal life. WE are teaching:Susana, Ausucena, Isaias, Jose, Liz Paola, Martha, and The Molina Family. I will update you all on them next week. 
I learned this week that God has done everything he can to help guide us to his presence again. God has given us the scriptures, church, prayer, prophets, the priesthood, and all other sorts of things to help others come back to him. One big example that I found in the scriptures is that God guided the Israelites in the desert when Moses was a prophet. It says that he guided them, "With clouds by day, and fire by night." The Israelite s took 40 years to get to the promise land and the big reason why it took so long is because of the sins that they committed and their unwillingness to be humble and repent and recognize the hand of the Lord in their lives. god has given us guides similar to that so that we can make it to our own promised land. In Alma 37:44-46 it says that it is very easy to listen to the word of God and pay attention to eat and if we do so we will be taken away from this world of pain and afflictions to a PROMISED LAND that is a lot better. That has been my goal these last 2 years. Help people find a better world through repentance and baptism in The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. I know that the church is true and I invite all to find out for themselves.

Thank you for the love and support! Until next week!
ELder Jessop

Friday, March 27, 2015

3-16-15 The Importance of Christ-Like Living.‏

Hello Family and Friends. 

This mission has changed my life. It has all been such a great blessing that has been rewarding beyond description. I have learned and felt that God really does love every single one of us. I have felt his presence in my life. I have grown to understand what he has done for me and how I should live to show my gratitude for his atoning sacrifice. I talk to many people in the street and it saddens me to recognize that they have not felt this peace, love, and redemption that comes from the atonement of Jesus Christ and it brings me such great joy that I cant describe to have the opportunity to help others come unto Christ and be perfected in him. I have grown to love my God and have come to know him better and I am extremely grateful. He has helped me become like him and I know that through repentance we may all become like him. I am happy. I know that my Redeemer lives and on that note I would like to tell you about my week.

Ramon: The biggest miracle that happened this week was the baptism and confirmation of Ramon Fernandez. He is 59 and I have said a little bit about him in past letters. His wife died 10 years ago and his son died 3 years ago at the age of 17. He has had a very hard life and it has been a privilege to be a part of his life and help him find peace and joy in a life that sometimes causes great pain and suffering. He got baptized on Friday at 8:30 and gave one of the greatest testimonies I have heard. It was such a humble testimony and a test of his faith. He is not the most wealthiest man in the world and he turned down a job to come to Church and get baptized on Friday and told us about his experience. He is very humble and I know that he will be able to become more and more like Jesus Christ as he live the principles and ordinances of the gospel.

Other Investigators: We are teaching a couple of other people too and helping them come unto Christ through baptism and repentance. We are teaching Asucena and her mom Susana. The man of the house is a member of the church and it was a great experience meeting them. Susana (mom of the house) wasn´t sure which church was true until we came to her house and before we left we invited her to pray and ask God. She did what we asked and went to work that day and said that she met a man that knows members of the church and he told her that she needed to go talk to them if she is looking for help. She talked to one of her friends, who is also a member named Myriam Bueno, and went to church with her on Saturday to a Relief Society activity and then she went to church and Sunday and she loved it. She has gone to church a couple times in the past, but never felt the urge to keep going. Now she feels like this is the way that the Lord is trying to take her. It has been a miracle and her daughter came to church to and realized that a couple of her high school classmates are members of the church to. We are teaching another young man named Isaias, who is also looking for the true church. His best friends are members and he has been to church several times and knows all the church doctrine, but feels that he isn't ready to be baptized. We are trying to help him complete with commitments and read the Book of Mormon and feel that it is true. We are teaching another women that is named Liz Paola and she came to church on Sunday to. We haven't shared with her a lot, but she lives with members, so we hope to be teaching her and helping her.

Zone Conference: I had the last Zone conference of my mission on Friday. A Zone Conference is when a bunch of missionaries get together in the mission and we receive instructions from the Mission President. We read two talks, the first was called Start with the End in Mind and the second talk was called "The Power of Faith". The first one talked about helping people receive Temple blessing and how we should see the potential of everyone of our investigators, their potential to become like God. The second talk was about faith and how God can perform miracles according to our faith. In our mission with have a goal to baptize over 200 people this month and if we do so, it will be the first time in Paraguayan history that a mission baptized over 200 people in a month. Our goal is 204 and with our faith, God will bless us according to our desires. We also watched Meet The Mormons which is a church produced movie about 6 Mormon families and how the gospel has affected their lives and has been a blessing for them. I invite everyone one who reads this letter to go see it!!! It was absolutely awesome and I am not saying that because I am a member of the church, but if you have ever wondered what a Mormon is or why I am here in Paraguay, GO SEE IT!

I have learned so much and been so blessed. My companion is helping me understand the importance of being patient, humble, and loving others. I am trying my best to live a Christ-like life and have noticed that the more I try the more I become like him. I love you all and thank you for your love and support. Until next week.

Elder Jessop

Thursday, March 19, 2015

3-9-15 March Madness... Mission Madness !!

Hello Family and Friends! We have changed March Madness to Mission Madness, which means Baptism Madness here in the Paraguay Asuncion Mission. It has been fun these last two weeks. As a mission we have a goal to help 204 people be baptized this month this month and this is our theme:  

                    Mosiah 18:16- Y de esta manera bautizamos a todos los que estuvieron en la misión                       Paraguay Asunción y eran un número de 204 almas;si y fueron bautizados en las                           aguas de LA MISIÓN PARAGUAY ASUNCIÓN, y fueron llenos de la gracia de Dios.

That is our goal for the month. Mission Madness!! We are trying our best to help people come unto Christ here in Paraguay, but now I´d like to talk about what has been going on in Barrio Obrero. 

Divisions: We did two divisions this week...one with Elder Edwards and another with Elder Norton. Elder Edwards(Orem, Utah) came here to do the division with me in my area and he did the baptism interview for one of our investigators name Ramos that is getting baptized this Wednesday because he can´t do it on Saturday. Elder Edwards and I were in the same district in the MTC and we had the same companion in the mission and it was super awesome the division. Next I went to an area called Republicano to do a division with Elder Norton( flagstaff,Arizona). HE is super awesome and I went there to do 3 baptism interviews for their investigators: Maria, Clara, and Mirna who all get baptized in two days. The interviews were very spiritual and it was an edifying experience for me and for them. Mirna wasn´t going to get baptized, but she prayed the night before and woke up in the middle of the night and called the Elders and said that she wanted to be baptized!!! That's what you call God answering prayers.  

Eating American Food: So my family sent me a box and seeing how my companion is from Ecuador I decided to share with him a lot of the food that they sent. He ate his first brownie, pudding, and candy corn pumpkin and pop tart. Elder Zamora is awesome and we are really having a fun time here.

Investigadors: We have an investigator named Ramon that is getting baptized on Wednesday. He is 59 and is ready to change his life. He was supposed to get baptized on Saturday, but came home really late from work and couldn't, but he did come to church the next day so we are planning his baptism again for this week, We also have an investigator named Isaias that came to church. We are trying to help him read the Book of Mormon and receive of testimony of its truthfulness. Sometimes that takes a while, but he loves to come to church and has a lot of friends there. 

I love the mission. It has been the best experience of my life. Those who have been following my emails should know that my time is running short. I have decided to take the approach of Alma, who said, " Yes, since that day, even until now, I have worked without end to bring souls unto repentance; to bring them to try the great joy that I tried; so that they can also be born of God and be filled with the spirit." (Alma 36:24 parafrased) That is my goal. To work WITHOUT END to bring souls unto Christ. I have felt such a great joy in doing so these last 2 years that I can´t stop now. There is no stopping early or going home early. I have to be like Alma and work until the end and then will my joy be complete like his was. Jesus Christ is the best example of this  complete joy. Even in the Garden of Gestemany he begged to be lifted from him the cup which he was drinking and succumbed to the will of the Father and suffered for all of us, even until the end. 

I know that the church is true. It has given me a direction and given my life joy. I know that families can be together forever. That is the  plan of God, that we may all be perfected unto Christ and believe in him so that we may one day be with the father again.

Elder Jessop

Friday, March 13, 2015

3-2-15 Fe, Consagración, Amor

Hellos Friends and Family. I hope you are not bored with my emails haha. I am doing great here is Paraguay. Sembrando y cosechando lo que siembro. The mission has been so fulfilling on a level that is very hard to describe. I can explain to you all the day to day activities, the lessons I learn, but it is really hard to explain the joy, peace, and love I have felt while serving here in Paraguay. I love it and though it has been hard, I couldn't ask for anything better.

Elder Zamora: Like you all know, Elder Zamora is the new Elder that I am training and he is super awesome. He got to baptized his first convert on Saturday. He is teaching me a lot of Spanish because almost all of my companions have been American. We are cooking a lot of...... rice. He loves rice. We buy like 2 pounds of rice a week. He is teaching me a lot of words from Ecuador; for example, when he doesn´t understand what someone said he says mande, instead of que dijo. It is super slang from Ecuador and I love it. He gives me a whole different perspective because he was baptized in the church only 1 year and a half ago and I admire his courage and strength that he has shown in these last couple of weeks in the beginning of his mission. 

Miracle 1: One of the miracles that we found this week is a 20 year old young adult named Matias. We were at a little store when he came up to us in his bike. I didn't see him so I went walking and he called my companion over and I went back so that we could talk to him. As it turns out, the missionaries visited him before, but he never went to church. He said he had left his house that day looking for someone and he ran into to us. He then went on to say that he wanted to go to church and be baptised.... Can I get a 1, 2, 3 MILAGRO!! It was an amazing experience we fixed an appointment to go there to his house the next day and we invited him to be baptized on the 21st of March. It was truly a miracle. The one that we were praying for.

Miracle 2: The next day after Matias, we found a man named Ramos, who has been to church a few times. Seeing how we are new to the area we decided to visit him and give it a shot. He let us in and he has had a pretty tough life. His wife died 9 years ago and his son died 3 years ago at the age of 17. Just that in itself as really hard to handle and overcome. We invited him to church and to be baptized because he said that he needed to find a new beginning he just didn't know what or where to find it. He was thinking of abandoning his house and just leaving, but he was very grateful that we came and changed his mind. He said in church that Sunday that he was waiting for someone to come and help him find the path and then we showed up. It is amazing how The Lord can guide his servants by the spirit even when we have no idea like my companion and I. It was a wonderful experience and he hopes to be baptized shortly.

Miracle 3: Rodrigo got confirmed this week. Our convert came to church with a tie, white shirt, and dress pants for the first time. That was awesome to see. He always tells us that he wants o be an Elder just like us and it is really special to hear people say stuff like that to us because it fills my heart knowing that I can help people complete their dreams just by being an example.

One mission. There is a lot of things that someone can do in 2 years. I chose to come here and it has been the best decision of my life. I love the Lord and I am grateful for his atoning sacrifice. It has cleansed me and made me who I am. I hope to keep doing better and keep finding more a more light until I can become perfected in him. I know that this work has blessed my life more than I had possibly imagined. I am so grateful. It has all been a miracle. 

Thank you for all the support and love. Have a great week!!

Elder Jessop

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

2-23-15 The Day and Life of a Missionary

"Sometimes you will never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory. "-unknown

I read this quote this week. Yesterday actually and I don't know why, but it just struck my heart and I wanted to share it. We should all try our best to appreciate the situations that the Lord puts us in. We should try and learn Patience in Affliction and do our best to bear our burdens with love, serenity, and desires to accept the will of God and know that he knows what is best for us. Our live is made up of moments and memories. We should try our best to make the most of them because before we know it, it will all just be a memory. How do we want to remember those moments? I want to remember this moment of my life as a step toward the presence of God. I know that he loves me. I have felt it and I do feel it. He knows me. He sent his son for me and for all of us. I know that to be true and my desires to share that truth and high.

I am not sure what to write right now to be honest. I wish I could explain my feeling, thoughts and love for each of you, but I can not do that through a computer screen. It has all just been amazing to be sincerely honest. Today is the 23rd of February 2015. Another great day, another great week, and many more weeks to continue is ahead of me. I guess I will start with what happened this week.

Tuesday: My first district meeting here in my new area. My district consists of 4 companionship. We talked about the vision to baptize, a talk that was given by a Mission President in 2008. Our mission has the goal to baptize 200 people this month. My district has a goal of 10. We talked about the importance of repentance and the remission of sins that comes through baptism. It was a great meeting and with the Lords help he can bless us according to our desires. 

Wednesday: We had ward night. On of our investigators came named Rodrigo. He is getting baptized this Saturday. I love the Paraguayan people. They are so loving and kind. Rodrigo is a stud future missionary and he wants to baptize his family too haha. We can help with that.

Thursday: I made a cake today. I was a banana cake and we gave it to the Candia Family. The mom is less active and her kids have yet to be baptized. One is named Angel and he is a stud! He loves the church and is 15. He wants a to be a professional boxer. The next one is Nadia she is 13 and then Jose is 8. We hope to reactivate the mom by doing service and sharing with her about the Book of Mormon and the importance of keeping Gods commandments. 

Friday: We had a service project and we made a floor with the Candia Family again. There was a flood here in my area a couple months ago and their house got destroyed s we are helping them build a new one. Starting with the floor. Service always brings joy to the heart. That same night I had a really spiritual experience. I was reading in Alma 24, when is talks about the Lamanites and how the slaughtered the newly converted Anti-Nefi-Lehitas. The obedience to Gods commandments and the trust they had in his will blew my mind. They had covenanted with God that they would not take up arms against their brothers. They would die before they broke that covenant with God. Over 1000 of them were killed and because of that over 2000 Lamanites were converted and became Anti-Nefi-Lehitas. It is amazing how Gods plan is perfect and how he has a path for everyone. 

Saturday:Baptism!!!!! Rodrigo got baptized

​It was a miracle!

Sunday: I gave a talk on Sunday in church and I talked about the importance of having the vision to baptize. How we should help everyone come unto Christ inviting them to repent and be baptized. It is impossible to be saved without talking that step in our lives. If we have friends, family members, neighbors, or know anyone that isn't a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. We have to help them repent, be baptized for someone that possesses the proper authority of God and help them receive the spirit by the laying on of hands. I have realized that now more than ever. 

I love my God. I have been extraordinarily blessed by his son, Jesus Christ, who came to this earth and suffered for me. I have come to appreciate that suffering and have learned the importance of daily repentance to be perfected in him. I invite all to come unto Christ and be perfected in him. Jesus Christ invites all to come unto him in every book of scripture that exists. He only wants us to be happy and has shown us how. I am happy. I have never been more happy. and I know that my joy and happiness and light will grow as I continue to share the gospel, obey gods commandments, and try my best to be like him. I love you all and I wish you a great week. 

Elder Jessop