Monday, April 29, 2013


Dang, it has been kind of a tough week. We have had lots of bad weather, lots of upliftments then just being dropped down, lots of being unfocused about future stuff(in a way it is a good thing because I feel a lot more secure about what I am going to do in the future), etc.

We were hoping and praying a lot that Elder Barton would be able to be here for the baptism of this family that we have prepared, but as always something crazy/unexpected happens to ruin the plans. Maybe it is just the will of the Father. We had an awesome visit with Vanesa and the family on Saturday preparing them for the baptismal interview and for church the next day(because it was essential for them to get baptized this next Saturday). We even bought her a cheap alarm clock so she could wake up on time for Sunday. They are a VERY humble family and they have no way of waking themselves up, especially on a Sunday. We passed by on Sunday morning to walk to church with them, but one of the kids came out and told us that the ambulance had to come and get her at 5:00 AM to take her to the hospital because she was going to have her baby...and the first thing that was going through our heads was "she is pregnant???" ha ha ha ha ha ha. We didn`t say it out loud, but it is sad how we didn`t even know that she was pregnant(she is a bit overweight). So it looks like the baptism is off for a couple weeks or so. It is a bummer for my comp, but oh well. Some things just don`t work out the way you want them to.

Another problem we have had is the terrible weather. I believe that it has rained here more than my whole mission put together. We are having to wash our clothes twice as much because we just get soaked like every other day. It has put a toll on the amount of work we were able to do this week, adding upon how my comp is kinda losing it. Ha. He is going to Germany for a few weeks before school because his family now lives on a military base because his dad is a doctor. He gets to see his family next Wednesday at 11:00 AM. He is super stoked to see the fam and leave the missionary life as well as getting sad to leave being a missionary and helping others with their salvation full time.

He has been finishing his stewardship letter this week that he has to turn in to Presidente Àvila and his stake president so he has been thinking a lot about the future, so I have too. I had a bit of time to search different schools and pray about it and stuff and I think that I want to go to the University of Utah. I am not sure if I want to go back to Snow. The U is not quite as cheap as Snow, so working for a bit may be necesary along with looking for financial aid. My idea is still that I can come back and work for a bit and spend time with the family maybe looking for an eternal spouse in the Salt Lake area. Ha ha. I think I am sure about the not coming home early to start school right away, but maybe I could just take a couple classes from a nearby college. That might be hard though too set up now and may be too late. But then go full out starting in the spring. My comp and I have also been talking casually about future careers and stuff. He is going to be a large animal vet and I was not 100% sure yet. I printed some stuff out on some health careers that I wanted to look into and I think I have changed from the physical therapy view and I feel really good about studying to be a dentist. Nothing I have ever thought about too hard before because it never called my attention. It concords well with my patriarchal blessing and it is one of the best careers to go into right now with many benefits. So yeah, that is the update on what I feel about the future life. I just will have to find a good job to keep me busy bringing in some cash for when I get home.

Well, this is the last week of the transfer. I just have to endure this last one out and I can receive a new comp and we can start working super hard again. I want these last three transfers to be the best of the mission. We`ll see what we can do.

I am glad that I have sisters that can at least get super good grades in school. I wasn`t terrible, but I will always have those guilty thoughts about how I wish I did better in high school so that the rest of life could be easier. Keep up the good work and you will all be rocket scientists some day! Ha. That is great that there are more missionaries leaving. Wasn`t it Kelleen that is coming to Argentina? Joe is coming home already?? Wow, that means that everyone starts to come home...oh boy. I will keep Bro. Heaton in my prayers this week.
Till next week,
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera

Monday, April 22, 2013

Andando (come on!)

Life is going alright here in the mission right now. We are kind of plateau-ing with the zone. Not seeing too much improvement in a lot of aspects. We had a couple cool miracles pass us last week with some investigators though so it is looking pretty good. My comp is getting closer to ending his mission(2 weeks...).

With our investigators this whole last week, we barely saw any progress and advancement and we were getting down on ourselves. During planning on Thursday, we decided to do a fast on Saturday especially for this one family we are teaching so that they can get baptized. We did the fast and that afternoon on Saturday in the lesson we had with this family, they basically just had a huge change of heart and said that they were now all wanting to get baptized. I have no clue what happened in their hearts for them to change that fast, but I know that I am going to be fasting more often. We put baptismal dates with all of them(Mirta, Vanesa, Ayelèn, and Luciano) for this next Saturday because they needed to go to church one more time. The unfortunate thing is that they didn`t make it to church yesterday! Ugh! There are way too many trials in the mission. Ha ha. Maybe it wasn`t God`s will for them to get baptized this next week. Who knows, maybe my comp will be able to baptize his last week here in Argentina!

Elder Barton is rounding the corner and starting to realize more that he is going home as he gets his classes ready, receives his flight plans, writing his stewardship paper for the end of his mission, etc. We are still working hard though. That is a good thing!

The bishop called us on Saturday night and told us that we are assigned talks for sacrament meeting. In our ward they do a missionary work sunday each month on the third sunday. We both had to talk for like 20 minutes. Good thing I had a couple talks prepared, so I just went off of those. I think that one of the big blessings of being set apart as a missionary is that it is not too hard to put together a quick talk and give it. ha ha.

Leonardo, our convert, is progressing a ton! He finished the Book of Mormon now and is starting to read all the other books that we gave him. He loved the preparing to enter the holy temple booklet and had tons of questions. That was fun. Ha ha. I can`t wait to go back to the temple when I finish the mish. Leo is doing all he can so that his daughter, Milagros, can get baptized also, but she loves to sleep on Sunday mornings...

We are also starting to work more with our less active member families because we are finding lots of part-member families. Maybe we will be baptizing and completing more familes in the near future. It is just really hard to work with inactive members.

We did an activity this week with puppets. It was something the ward mission leader put together. We basically did a puppet show on "the life of a missionary", but not really. Ha. I don`t think we got much of what the missionary work in the ward needed, but oh well. At least we had fun with puppets...I´ll attach a pic.

The San Rafael zone is not really going anywhere. I am just kinda doing all that I can right now as a leader as well as waiting patiently for transfers to see some new missionaries in the zone...ha ha.

Today, we have plans to go visit a bodega(winery) because it is basically my comps last p-day(because we may be going to Mendoza next monday) and he hasn`t been to a bodega yet. There are plenty here in San Rafael so that should be fun.

Sorry I didn`t give too many details on the piche(armadillo) last week. The answer is yes, it was pretty good. It was one of the fattiest things that have ever eaten. It is not clean. It makes you feel like just taking a long shower and eating about 4 pounds of laxatives and tums to get that thing out of you as fast as you can. Armadillo burps are worse than fish burps. Ha ha. 
Thanks for all the prayers. Love you!
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera 

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Armadillo en mi panza (Armadillo in my belly)

We had a better week and got a lot more work done than the last. Our investigators are progressing but they still are not coming to church. Elder Barton is getting nearer and nearer to the end of his mission. I am starting to think about what my future is going to be like after the mission.

I don`t understand how two areas can be so different. When I was in my last area in Chimbas, it wasn`t this hard to bring people to church, but here it is the thing that is taking the most toll on all of us. We are working with complete families but the members aren`t as willing to help. It makes a huge difference. It is still possible to baptize people without members working with you, but with them it makes it a whole lot easier. We are basically still working with the same few families and trying to get them to take more steps. The Esquivel family and the Cortez family. Leonardo, our recent convert, is the head of the Esquivel family and is being a great example for his daughter and those of the extended family that live in the house. The next big step is bringing them to church. The Cortez family needs to have member involvement in the lessons and then they will start to gain their tesitmonies. We are praying a ton for them.

Elder Barton, my comp, is nearing the end of his mission as he only has 3 weeks left. It is tough sometimes being with a missionary like this because a lot of them seem to "burn out" towards the end. He is staying somewhat strong. Ha. We are working hard, but if he is going to wake up at 6:30 he is going to need the siesta in the afternoon to rest his eyes for a bit. Ha ha.

My comp is getting all of his classes and stuff ready at BYU and it gets me wanting to get more ready for the future. President, towards the end of the mission, gives us permission to look at schools and jobs and stuff, so I will spend some time on that and get back to ya. I may need some help on some of that stuff. Actually, is there a way that you can send me my Snow information. How to get into my snow account so I can look at my credits and stuff to see what I need. I would appreciate it. I can`t remember any of that stuff.

Last week was a lot colder and this week is pretty hot again. I love the unpredictable weather. This P-day, we went to Valle Grande, a beautiful place up there in the mountains of San Rafael. It was good up there and we had a good time, but we had a little trouble getting back. That is why I didn`t write yesterday. I will send some pics. We ate armadillo for lunch with our asado on Sunday with members. That was fun. My first brain that I have ever eaten was armadillo brain. Mmmm. I´m sure that Lexi would love it. She always loves stuff like that. I´ll bring some back for her.

Thanks for the prayers in my part. I wish everyone well till next week!
Un Abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera

Monday, April 8, 2013

La Conferencia estuvo manso (The Conference was meek)

That`s super awesome that in one week I became a `new cousin` twice! I am glad that everything went well with the births of Whitnie and Hudson. Just making the big family that we have that much bigger. We had a so-so week here. The zone, after transfers has just been falling quite a bit. We have the zone meeting tomorrow so this will be one of our chances to elevate the zone. Wow, General Conference was pretty flippin sweet! The talks were super awesome and I feel like I was very able to feast upon their words.

Some of my favorite talks were Holland(I just love the way that he is able to grab our attention so much that we are on the edge of our seats the whole time. I think everyone looks forward to him every time to take a great part out of the bible and interpret it into a way that just makes everyone's jaw drop.), Andersen, the first presidency in the priesthood session(namely Utchdorf), etc. We missed out on a few talks on Sunday because they were trying to kick us out of the enlish room and some of the stake leaders here did not know what they were doing. Oh well. I think it was pretty obvious that one of the big themes of this conference and one of the main things that God wants us to know through his living prophets is that we need to put more focus in our home and family. I was able to point out a reference to that principle in almost every talk! Must be important... The most important eternal work that we can do is under our own roof. If everyone did it perfectly, we would have a perfect world. Family is the most important social unit. My comp loved Elder Clayton`s talk...ha ha. He wants to get married ASAP!

The other North Americans in our zone(Elder Chase and Elder Larsen) were able to baptize in between sessions on Sunday. That was a pretty cool experience for them and that family.

We had some really good visits with some investigators this past week. We did a couple exchanges and we had consejo and conference and other distractions from our area, but we did the best we could. We watched the long Joseph Smith: Prophet of the Restoration movie with Leonardo, his daughter, her boyfriend Nicolàs, and other kids there. After the movie we were able to talk about the movie and feel the spirit super strong. Many of the kids got emotional because they were feeling something they had never felt before. Leonardo bore his testimony so strong in front of them and really put the words of Elder Holland to the test. What Leo told the kids was that he truly `believed` that what we were teaching was true and that is why he got baptized last week. He is a huge stud!!! Those kids have to get baptized now. Unfortunately, for some unknown reason, Leo and the kids were not seen this whole weekend at any of the sessions of conference. Dang! We will still see a lot of progress in them equally this week.

It is crazy to be with someone who only has 4 weeks left until they are going to split from the mission. He isn`t getting way too bad yet, but he will probably want to do anything but proselyte during the last few weeks. Gotta endure till the end!
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La iglesia es verdadera

Monday, April 1, 2013

Bautismo de las Pascuas

Happy Easter everyone!...from yesterday.

I hope everyone had a great Easter Sunday and was able to have fun with the eggs and bunnies as well as take some time to think about Christ which is the reason of why we celebrate this day. I missed the family a lot yesterday. None of the bigger holidays in the mission are the same without the family. We passed a so-so week as a zone here in San Rafael. We gained lots of elders that are not the biggest of workers so it kind of complicates things for us a bit here. There is work to be done. But hey, we baptized Leonardo this past weekend!! It was awesome!

It was definitely a baptism that we had to work for pretty hard this past week. The enemy was throwing just about everything he had in front of us including not being able to find baptismal clothing, him almost not passing the baptismal interview, working with a tough ward mission leader, etc. We are just glad that he was able to get baptized, that it was a great spiritual experience for him, and that his daughter, Milagros, is way happy for him and supports him and will soon be following him into the water. He finally felt the spirit a lot in sacrament meeting this time! It was awesome to see him with his arm around his daughter because she came to see his confirmation. I think that it was one of the happiest moments of his life finally feeling good about bringing his daughter to a church that he fully trusts in and has a stellar testimony that it is true. That is what the mission is all about!!! Helping families become closer to each other as they get closer to God. Good stuff.

Church was good yesterday because they actually remembered that it should be Easter themed(both Christmases and Easters that I have passed in the mission, the wards didn`t really put any focus on the theme of the holiday). The church here lacks a lot of organization/preparation. They are always just everywhere with their talks and meetings that they are very hard to follow. Preparation is a very important thing so it makes it easier for the ones who attend to feel the spirit. The spirit is going to be in the church every Sunday because it is the Lord`s Church, but sometimes it is really hard to feel it if you don`t seek.

Can`t wait to see pics of the new cousins coming from Kim and Lynsey. I have a lot to keep in my prayers this week. I hope dad can get better for his trip too. We totally forgot that it was April Fools today. It always catches me unexpectedly there at the first of the month so I can`t think of any good jokes. Oh well. By the way...I´m not 100% sure, but I think that I may have just made you two grandparents... Good ol April Fools jokes. That sure wouldn`t be good at all. The pie we had was bought from the store. The only thing that we make here is pan de banana(banana bread). Ha ha. Simple, fast, and tasty. That is awesome that Stephen is home. Send him a "Que te pasa chabòn. Te mando saludos de Mendoza, lo cual serìa mejor que Còrdoba..." I haven`t gotten any packages or letters but we are going to Mendoza tonight.

I am way stoked for Conference this weekend! We are going to hear many awesome things from inspired men. It is always great to hear what the prophet of God has to tell us for these modern days.

My keyboard is terrible today and we are a bit hurried because we have to travel to Mendoza today for the zone leader consejo. But I will attach some pics and stuff.

Thanks for everything! Love you all!
Un abrazo,
Elder Larisch
La Iglesia es verdadera
My cool Easter egg
Baptism of Leonardo