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Elder Pemberton
Santo Domingo West Mission
C/ Hatuey #73
Urb. Los Cacicazgos
Santo Domingo, Rep├║blica Dominicana

Monday, October 22, 2012

10/22/2012

Well I need to be serious with you all. It´s been the hardest transfer of my short mission life. Mostly because of my companion. I know that the Lord see´s it fit to try His children and there are days when I feel a little bit brave and I ask for more trials in my life to be able to grow more. And well does the Lord hear the prayers of his children. 

Elder Paredes and I, short and sweet, are very different. He´s a great person just raised very differently than I was. He recognizes his faults and its been hard for me to recognize mine, because I´m so focused on just accepting him for who he is and trying to bare it all. We just dont feel any unity when we teach because he teaches very differently than I was taught. We had exchanges on friday and when he came back on saturday I just felt such a tension between us. Before we went out to work he said that he needed to talk to me. So I sat down at the desk and he told me he couldn't take it anymore. He said, "what do you what me do to? What do I need to change? " And I just looked at him. What am I supposed to say? I felt like he wanted me to pull out a magic button that at promblem solver written on top. All I could think of was trying to be the missionaries that Preach My Gospel tell us to be and be obedient. I feel like I´m always walking on thin ice with him and I feel like I never know what to do. So his solution was to start letting me make all of the decisions. Its been a really hard couple of days on top of the diffuclt transfer that passed and the one we´re in right now. And all of you who know me well enough know that I´m not so great at handling difficult situations. The best hope I have is that all of this will make me stronger and that I´m learning a lot. I guess? I understand that the Lord asks us to sacrifice everything for Him but I do ask myself, "is there at times unecessary sacrifice in our lives?" I know that this is where I need to be. 

But no worries, not all is lost. There is always hope. I´ve done the best I can to try to understand how can I find happiness in spite of it all. We got to go to the temple and unfortunately I wasn´t able to leave as happy as I wanted to. And only the Lord knows why. But I was able to learn something. I was able to learn that we can find the a fullness of joy when we complete with our purpose. And as I thought more about it, I thought, "well, what other time in my life am I going to have a more defined purpose?!?" For those of you missionaries, "inivite people to come unto Christ by helping them..."  you know the rest. I feel bad for those of you out in the lone and weary world where its less easy to understand your true purpose. Also looking for help I was reading in the May General Conference Liahona and I came across the President Uchtdorfs talk in priesthood session. I learned there that especially as missionaries we can find happiness as we look back on the day and realize which moments we were used as instruments in the Lords hands. There are answers in the scriptures of the ancient times and modern day. 

Now, on to investigators. Even though Elder Paredes and I are having some problemitas we have been able to find some investigators. We found a man named Gil Abreu and he's such a great man. He´s had a really humbling year. His family left him and went to the US. He lost his leg in a weird accident when he stepped on glass from a light bulb. The leg got infected and the doctors had to take the leg. He was also a Subdirector of Agriculture for the southern region of the DR. Which is a pretty big deal. Unfortunately his party lost in the presidential elections and because of his leg he wasn't going to be able to keep up with his projects that he had. Now he is looking to join a church. He feels a great need to join a church because he knows how much God has helped him in his life. He´s honestly such an example to us. Because he´s not depressed nor hateful for what has happened. He feels good and he shows it. We just hope that he can get his answer soon because he´s receiving a few other churches at his house. The battle of souls is real. Pray for him. 

I´m out of time but please pray for these people as well. Eridania, Natalia, Cesarina. They are a family a mom and her two girls. Isamar, who is a girl of 14 years and Nicaruaris. And please please please pray for my companion and I. We want to fix things, we just dont know how. I love you all, hope you have a great week.

Love,
Elder Pemberton

P.S. If you could send some emails or letters or anything I could really use the strength. I don´t mean to sound needy I know you all do so much for me. But If you have time that would be great.

Pictures 10/15/2012






Tuesday, October 9, 2012

10/8/2012


Mis queridos amigos y familiares,

I´m here starting on my 6th transfer in the mission field. This transfer has gone by so, so fast. We found out last night that Elder Paredes and I will being sticking it out for another one. So lets home that we can grow a lot more in this coming transfer and see what happens.
This week has been a week of a lot of traveling. On tuesday we went to an area about an hour away called Padre Las Casas for our district meeting. After which i was supposed to go on exchanges with the zone leaders but my stomach was just killing me. Note taken: just be obedient and dont eat in members houses cuz its very likely that you´ll end up with diarrhea. Yeah its been a rough week and a half BUT what ever it was has left my dehydrated body and now I´m back to eating the good stuff again. But due to me not feeling well I didnt go on the exchange and me and my comp went back to our area to work.
Wednesday we came into town to Azua to have interviews with the President. It was a good time to spend with the other missionaries as we waited and then I was also able to have a good interview with the President. With that and general conference I was able to receive a lot of good advice on how to keep my excitement up even in tough times.
Then on thursday we took the hour drive BACK to PLC so that my comp could give a baptism interview as he is the District Leader. 
On friday we went to Azua again which is a 15 minute ride on the highway in the back of a truck (hey you got to do what you got to do) so its not tooo bad. We had our end of the transfer party with the senior couple, The Browns. They really are great I love being able to spend time with them whenever we get the chance. But our zone went over to their apartment for lunch and guess what we ate!!!! Hawaiian Haystacks!!!!! AH I was so very happy to eat a meal from home. If you don´t know what they are ask my mom Ana she makes them quite well! But please don´t get me wrong I love rice and beans. It was nice to be able to hang out with our zone in a calm environment and share stories and such. 
Then came general conference. I learned from Elder Stott that he doesnt take notes during the conference. And he´s got a point because the talks come out in about a month and we can read them again there. What he taught me to do is to write down the things that the Spirit tells you. What a different conference. It went by so fast but I truly received plenty of inspiration from heaven that I hope I will be able to put into effect very soon in my mission. 
As for the revelatory news of the age change of the missionaries my heart soars to know that truly we are blessed to be part of the true church and that Christ, and not a man, directs it. As we heard about the sister missionaries my mind went directly to my good friend Jessica Van Alfen who I hope received an answer to her prayers with this news. She will make an excellent missionary. This will be such an excellent development in missionary work and I know that the time is close to the end for the Lord is calling more and more of His children to serve Him and to spread the "Good News" so that the world can be prepared for our Lords second coming.
I was definitely filled with the Spirit as I brought questions to conference and received direct answers to those questions by the messangers of our Heavenly Father. Just another way that He shows that He loves us His children. 
My companion and I are excited to be together again. We´re struggling a little bit in teaching with power and unity in our lesssons. I hope that we can humble oursleves and find an answer quick so that we can help more and more people. And at the same time enjoy more and more our mission.
Last night while we were waiting for the transfer call I opened up some letters. I have never felt so strong a spirit from a letter as when I read a dearelder I received from Kiffyn Smith. She´s currently in China right now teaching english. She tells me that she is not allowed to share her testimony at all and that being in a different country and culture has been hard for her, but at the same time she´s loving it. I am grateful for her example in missionary work by example, by service, and by love. Also quite a while ago just so you know kels I sent you a letter and well I said I didnt get yours. I recieved the letter the week after I wrote it. Just so ya know.
Well my dear family and friends I hope you all know how much I truly love you all. I know that I am here on my mission for a reason and that I am learning so much. I hope you all enjoyed general conference and were able to receive peace counsel and feel the love of your Father in Heaven like I was able to. I know this church is true. I know that Heavenly Father is always with us and always knows what we are going through and what we need. We need to remember that we need to humble oursleves by always praying to Him and realizing that we need Him much more than we let on to (Mosiah 4:11). I truly love being a missionary even though its been hard I know I´m being prepared for so much in this short two years. Please pray for the work over here. Pray for miracles in the lives of our investigators and that their hearts may be opened. We will be eternally grateful for those prayers. I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Love,
Elder Pemberton