Monday, January 28, 2013

Semana de Milagros (Week of Miracles)

What a fun week we have had! One of those weeks where during the week you face a lot of challenges and falls but looking back we have got a lot of stuff looking very good for the rest of the transfer. We are going to be baptizing Santiago this Sunday. Adolfo and Elisa(Flia Kim) are going to get married on the 8th of February and I will be able to see their marriage and baptism! I got reminded of the importance of obedience to the words of living prophets.

I went to Mendoza on Monday and got back on Tuesday in the evening. We basically missed 2 days of work in our area. It is tough to leave investigators like that for so long without any visits. It was really weird traveling solo all the way to Mendoza. I am so used to always being with my comp 24/7 that it doesn´t feel right to be alone. Ha ha. I hope it won´t be too weird when I get home. I may just not ever leave the house. Ha ha. I just had to go and sign a couple papers and do a thumbprint thing and that was it. But something really cool happened on Monday night. The elders from Necochea(another area in my zone) called me and told me that they had good news. A man that has been attending their ward for a long time is moving into our ward boundaries and he wants to get baptized. His name is Santiago(50), we have been meeting with him a bit and preparing him for baptism this Sunday. He is a super cool guy! He works a lot so he can´t get baptized on Saturday, but we are planning on it Sunday after church. We are pretty stoked. It looks like every companionship in the district is going to be baptizing this week.

Another great tender mercy that happened this past week is that we basically secured the marriage and baptism of Elisa and Adolfo(Flia Kim)! We got in contact with another consultant from the registro civil(the place where they can go and take out a turn to get married. I don´t know how to say it in English ..) that is a member from the other stake. Everything as of right now is looking pretty good. We are continually praying for a miracle. We are hoping to see some pictures in white these next few weeks of the transfer.

I told you about the past week about how it rained a ton here in San Juan. Well, it kept raining. The water system in San Juan is very old and needs to be replaced. Because of all of the dirty rain, they stopped all of the water in San Juan for a day to three days(depending on what area you lived in San Juan). Luckily in our apartment it only lasted a day, but many other houses went without for much longer. Now all the members in San Juan realize how important it is to obey the living prophets and have food(water) storage to be ready for whatever disaster or event that comes our way. We are in the latter days so if we want to take the name of the church upon us we need to always be ready for the second coming of our savior.

I´m sorry to hear about the passing away of Chris´s dad. They aren´t members of the church are they? The passing of a death is much harder for those who are not familiar with the plan of salvation. The scriptures are a good way to look for consolation: 1 Cor 15:21-23
21 For since by man came adeath, by man came also thebresurrection of the dead.
22 For as in aAdam all bdie, even so in cChrist shall all be madedalive.
23 But every man in his own aorder: Christ the bfirstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his ccoming.

Thanks to our loving savior Jesus Christ and His atonement for our sins, through Him we will all be made alive. This seems to be a big topic in the mission field because this is one of the big questions of the soul that often gets left unanswered. What happens to us after death? I know that these things are true because I have prayed to know if they are true and I have received my answer. What a blessing it is to know the great mysteries of the plan of happiness.

I love you all and hope that you pass a great week. Make sure you put on a coat over there in your ice storms and stuff.
Un Abracito,
Elder Dev Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Lluvia (rain)

Sounds like everyone has passed another good week over there! I hope it´s not too chilly over there for ya. We passed a pretty good week. It has been raining a lot here this whole past week. It is even raining right now.

Really, this week has been pretty normal, other than that we are improving and meeting many of our goals that we have as a district. Sebastián Kim is doing very well. Yesterday after church he received the Aaronic Priesthood and later that night left with many youth to go to efy. We have been visiting them a lot this past week(not only because they have a new ping pong table) to work closely with Adolfo and Elisa to get them prepared to get married finally. We set goals with them and they should be going today(this morning) to take out a turn. It usually takes about two weeks. I am praying that I can be here for their marriage and baptism! I didn´t realize it earlier, but Elisa´s birthday is also the 17th of January. So we had a little party over there that day. I hope you enjoyed your birthday this week mom. I bet it is really nice to be in St. George during these cold temperatures. Kyle(roommate from Snow) told me that up in Logan it got down to like 27 below zero...okay, I think I am happy here in San Juan. ha ha. Our other investigators are being stubborn and are being very good at frustrating us right now, but we have faith and patience to endure. We are also finding a lot more people to work with so I can still say that we are having a lot of success. It has cooled down here a little bit with the rainfall. I am just scared for when all this stops because the humidity is going to be crazy! I am going down to Mendoza today to do some more stuff for my VISA. Should be fun. Sebastián wanted Élder Crawford to baptize him because he knew him before us. They were the ones that found the Kim family, but then they found out that they belonged to our ward after a bit. I am planning on baptizing the parents though. Ha ha. Well, that is about it for this week. Sorry for the short letter this week. See ya next week!
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera

Monday, January 14, 2013


Greetings from Argentina once again. We had a pretty good week. The best news is that Sebastiàn Kim got baptized on Saturday! We also had our long-awaited interviews with Presidente Àvila. We have been eating way too many sweets lately so I am wanting to start a diet. It is still super hot here, and getting hotter. And it is my mothers birthday this week!

Yep, everything went very very well with the baptism this weekend! Sebastiàn Kim got baptized without problem and it was one of the best baptismal services that I have seen. He had many friends and family and fellow members come and attend the service. I think we had about 50 to 60 people there(which is a ton here in Argentina). He was really happy and is pretty stoked to go to efy this next week. Well, and the parents of the Kim family(Adolfo and Elisa Castro), are still pending on their marriage. It is true what you say mom, that it is difficult to work so hard to be God`s tool of the saving of a soul, but you may not be there to see the fruits of your labors. Even though I want to be able to say that I married them and baptized them, it has come to a point where it doesn`t even matter anymore. I see them as God`s elect just standing in front of the waters of baptism with a wall in front of the font. I just want them to be able to understand the importance of not putting off their repentance because the enemy is just going to keep telling them to not worry because they have plenty of time. They just need to get baptized. Same with the other couples that we are working with. The girl in one of them is now in the hospital today expecting her baby any moment. The other couple consists of a 16 year old(Emanuel) who has been coming to church for months without missing a Sunday. He was found by the anterior elders here. He comes from a family of the Jehovah `s Witnesses religion. His girlfriend is a member in the ward. His parents kicked him out of the house because his girlfriend is expecting a baby and they are not married. He is working things out so he can move in and have his girlfriend`s dad be his legal guardian or something like that and then they can get married. A bit complicated, but possible. Ha.

We had interviews with Presidente on Thursday. It went great as usual. An opportunity to talk with that man one on one is a pretty cool experience alone. At least I walk out of the interview feeling real good about myself. We went and ate at McDonalds for lunch. It had been a long time since my last McDonalds. Didn`t really miss it anyways. Ha. But what I did enjoy was an ice cream from Freddo, a gourmet ice cream parlor(expensive, so that will probably be the first and last time). It was delicious. Since E` Correa has been my comp, we have been eating a ton of ice cream! Just about every day. He is a great guy and all, but just being a little rough on the diet. I need a little bit more self-control. I made eggnog again this week. It always turns out so good! I should probably watch myself on that too.

It is still SUPER hot here in San Juan. Even though it stormed pretty bad last night, rain just increases the heat the next day here. I guess we are both stuck in the extremes. I could use -1 degrees once in a while here too. I am starting to bathe myself 2-3 times a day now. Ha ha.

Don`t think that I would ever forget your birthday mother! HAPPY BIRTHDAY It took me a little while, but I made you a special cake even with some utensils to eat with. I would sing you Feliz Cumpleaños in Spanish. Over the computer will have to do for this year until next year when I can sing to you in the house. Be sure to send me pics of all your gifts.

Spiritual Thought: I don`t know why I haven`t been giving you all spritual feasts with my Book of Mormon reading challenge that we are doing now in the mission. Presidente Âvila gave us all a new Book of Mormon with a pencil and a bookmark with the challenge to read it in 66 days. Even though it takes up all the time in my personal studies every day and I have other things I want to study, I have been enriched with the clear teachings of the prophets of the Book of Mormon. We are now in Mosìah. I passed the scripture mastery scripture this morning in Mosìah 4:30. I also have the new CES devotional of President Utchdorf playing while I am writing. He speaks of truth and the importance of it. The truth is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. This scripture in Mosìah teaches us to watch ourselves or in other words look in the mirror to see if we are really in the truth, to see if we are really watching our thoughts and our words and our works. Confirm your own testimony of the truth, and if you don`t have one of your own yet. Get one! God is our loving heavenly father and I know that He restored the truth to us in these latter days through the prophet Joseph Smith so that we can ultimately return back to His presence. I love being a proclaimer of the truth.

Have a great week!
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera
Sebastiàn Kim"s baptism

Monday, January 7, 2013

La Familia Kim...

I very much enjoyed looking at those pictures of the four-wheeler in the snow in front of the house. I used my imagination to make myself there for a moment making snow angels and stuff. It is getting pretty tough to keep a shirt white here in a San Juan January. We passed the New Years a lot better than we did Christmas this year. Transfers went well. More or less rough work week, but it is looking good for this week!

My new comp is a boss! E` Correa is from a department called La Matanza in Buenos Aires, Argentina. His family consists of four(2 parents, him, older sister). He is 19 years old and has now almost 5 months in the mission. He is from the same group as my kid(E` Johnson) as well as E` Egbert. I don`t know why Presidente is putting me with all of these youngins. Everything happens for a reason though. E` Correa came from Godoy Cruz, Mendoza, where he started the mission. He is a hard worker and very obedient missionary. We are lookin forward to having a great transfer.

New years was spent at the Kim Family`s house this year. We went over there pretty early and hung out with Kevin, Sebastiàn, and Yini, playing UNO for a while while papa Kim was preparing the beautiful asado. He always prepares it Korean style with the sweet meat and rice with a salsa picante. I like it a lot. Fireworks were a little better than Christmas mainly because there wasn`t any wind to stop these argentines from lighting them off. Hermano Kim took us home at midnight and from then on, we hung out with a couple other elders in the pench for a while playin cards and crackin jokes. We hung out in the institute the whole next day starving because nothing was open and we had nothing in the pench to eat. Neither were there any buses on the 1st so we had to be hungry the whole day while scavenging for whatever candy was left from our packages. Ha ha. Man, I guess the holidays were good because it helped me appreciate even more being a working missionary. So much hanging out made me never want to play cards again. Ha. It is an interesting concept(that of doing something unproductive repeatedly for the space of many hours or days), but I do not recommend it.

It was kind of a rough work week not being able to get way too much done with the fiestas and transfers, but we do have some awesome news. Sebastiàn is for sure getting baptized this Saturday as well as all set up for efy in Còrdoba on the 21st of this month. He really wants to get baptized this Saturday, but he still says that he doubts once in a while that God really exists. Because really anything about religion was hard for him to grasp his whole life(his dad was buddhist and the rest of the family has been searching for a while, especially Yini, who spent a long time investigating the Testigos de Jehovà(Jehovas Witnesses)). But now, because the family is doing so good in the church, he sees their example and wants to be like them. We are praying a lot for this guy right now. We also fasted yesterday for another couple that we are working with closely, the De Los Rìos Family(Johana and Felix). We were able to put a marriage date for March(I may not be here then, we are trying to move it up because we know that they don`t need to wait for anything really to get married. We like to call ourselves "The Casadores""(The marryers), so lets hope that we can have success with some of these couples here in Rivadavia.

Everything is going well here. I send a hello once again to all those northamericans up there freezin their noses off.
Un abrazo,
Elder Dev Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera
Fernando la Largartija

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

¡Me Quedo!

Good Afternoon USA!!
Yep, today is the day we received transfers. Pretty exciting. Lots of changes going on here in Chimbas Zone. My district was all able to baptize this past week. We ended this transfer with a bang! It was awesome being able to talk with the family. Christmas was fun/boring and New Years will be much better!

Well I can imagine just how anxious you are to hear about transfers...ha. E´ Egbert is outta here! He is going to make his way over to a place called Valle de Uco back in Mendoza. I am going to stay here for the hottest summer of my lifetime with a latin comp. His name is E´ Correa. All I know is that he came in the same group as E´ Egbert and E´ Johnson, he is supposed to be really cool, and he is from Buenos Aires, AR. My district is changing a lot. But we will have an equally successful following transfer. E´ Johnson is going to San Luis(he is my son, I need to know where he is going) and he is getting his first latin comp! E´ Wixom is coming in close. He is going to be the new zone leader in the San Juan Zone, so we will be working closely with the Kim Family.

Christmas was kinda fun. We got passed by the huge zonda on Christmas Eve and that just ruined everything. Knocked out the power of everywhere in San Juan. So even more than everyone burning of hot(115 degrees F) winds, everyone was stuck inside their house without functioning air conditioning and ways to make their food. We just got a couple candles out and played cards all night till 10 with a couple other elders, then went over and had an asado with our ward mission leader. Christmas was awesome because I got to see and talk to all the family, but other than that it was super boring because we couldn´t go out and proselyte. It will be the same way tomorrow for the 1st, but we have the keys to the Institute and lots of elders are coming. We are also going tonight to the Familia Kim´s house to pass the new year. They, I have to say are very much one of the top families in my whole mission. They treat me like their real son. We have been spending a lot of time with them lately because their 18 year old son, Sebastián(who hid from us for a long time) felt left out and now has a testimony and wants to get baptized. We took some photos yesterday. Bad news is that the computer is not letting me send pis today so it will have to wait till next week. Sorry.

The whole Kim family showed up to church...on time! It is a super awesome thing that they all showed up, but the thing is, with our ward, they all show up late. But the Kim family still had a really good experience with our ward and they will be coming back. Sebastián(18) has a baptismal date for the 12th at 7:00. His parents, who we are ready to marry, have the date for the 19. We are praying, as well as many ward members, that they can make it to that date. We have a bunch of other investigators that we are preparing for this month. I hope E´ Correa likes to work hard and baptize because we are going to be doing just that. I just wish marrying a couple could be easier because we are working with a plethora of good unmarried couples.

We had a pretty awesome miracle reference this past week. We went contacting with a member when she took us to this house that we dropped off a baptismal invitation the other day. The señora let us in and we saw that the invitation was still on the table. Her name is Claudia Marchado and she is an inactive Evangelist, but still firmly believes in God. We started talking and she said that she really wanted to go and see it but something else came up. We found out that she is the aunt of an active member in the ward, but had never talked with the missionaries before. We kept going in the lesson and found out that she has been the most prepared investigator that I have ever come across in the history of my mission. She said that she was praying for someone to help her son-in-law with his life, she has had lots of signs that this is the true church, and she has even seen The Other Side of Heaven one time when she was looking for good, christian movies. It was just an amazing lesson seeing how much of the Lord´s hand had been in her life even before we got there. I hope that she will be able to progress peacefully to be able to come and get to know the church.

Spiritual Thought
After Skype on Tuesday I have been thinking about my family and what they really mean to me and the love I feel towards them. I came across a video today on that impacted me. It is really hard to think of how I would feel if I was that young man who out of nowhere lost members of his family. His attitude is just the thing that really hit me. What does the knowledge of God´s Great Plan of Happiness mean to us? Does it affect the way we live? The decisions we make? When families are sealed, that family becomes eternal. Nothing, but the members of the family themselves can break that bond made in the temple. Seguimos siendo una familia.

I love you all very much and pray for you every day. Enjoy your winter!
Un abrazo,
Elder Dev Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera