Friday, April 25, 2014

"a doctrine satan doesn't attack is hardly worth teaching"

Hola Familia!!

The subject for the email is a quote from President Fenn... I'm
going to tell you about the Mission Conference we had which some
refer to as "the Sacred Grove experience". We were in a forest
(ish) and remembered the Prophet Joseph and the first vision. There
are many principles and doctrines we learn from the First Vision
that satan will do all he can to attack. We share the restoration with
everyone we can because we know that it is through the truths,
priesthood, and ordinances that have been restored that we can partake
of Christ's atonement and be saved. This isn't always easy, especially
serving in the state that killed the Prophet! But I know we were each
called here for a reason and that President and Sister Fenn were
called here for very specific reasons; one of them is to help us be
forever true to the Prophet Joseph- the revelator of Jesus Christ for
our dispensation.

Here are some quotes from President Fenn: (some are funny but, maybe
you had to be there?)

"Satan hates Joseph smith. Don't you forget it."

They (God and Jesus Christ) said all their creeds were abominations.
"Abomination is my type of of language!" (Hahaha)

"Joseph smith and hyrum didn't give their blood so that we could have
a world famous choir."

"Imagine what it'd be like to be instructed by Moroni. It'd be pretty cool."

"In my dying breath I want to say that my missionaries stayed true to
the prophet Joseph Smith."
It was really great. One of the principles we learn from the
First Vision that I love is that where God is, Satan flees. God does
not shake hands with him.

So yeah! After he and Sister Fenn spoke, they opened it up for
testimonies- which, if you want to keep it short you DO NOT open it up
for missionaries to give testimonies. Good thing they didn't expect it
to be short haha. But the testimonies were inspiring, I really did
love to hear all of them. I was getting a bit hungry at the end
though haha. I didn't share my testimony there because I wanted others
to have the chance, but I'd just like to tell you now that I do have a
testimony of Joseph Smith. I know that he was led to the plates and
that he translated them by the gift and power of God. The Book of
Mormon is a true testament of Jesus Christ I know that for sure.

Below are some pictures- we had the meeting near that pretty lake- it
was a beautiful day, the warmest day so far I think. So many people
got sun burns haha I just got bad allergies :(

GOOD NEWS: Gael from my last area got baptized this past Saturday!!
I couldn't go, it's pretty far and we are already taxing our members a
lot. But I am so so happy for him I knew he would.

This week We met this AWESOME LADY who is the ELECT OF GOD! She was a
referral from headquarters- she requested for us to come. Someone she
knows has been talking to her about the church and how great it is and
she wanted to find out more. She's gone to the catholic and heard the
Jehovah's witnesses before but she says that they just don't fill her.
They don't feel right. She is looking for peace in her life and for
something to fill her because she feels a bit empty and like something
is missing. The spirit was so strong in that lesson. There were two
times that I was testifying in that lesson and chills went from my
head to my feet. That was such a blessing and we are hoping and
praying that all will go well. Pray for her! Her name is Isabel.

Well family I love you so so much!

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

'No Doubt'

Hey hey

Sometimes in weekly planning we give a name to the week we are
planning for -so we're more pumped for it and stuff.

This week was named 'no doubt' week.

It was pretty good! The good news is that we finally saw Joaquin
and taught him. We had been over reacting a bit and were thinking that
he was going to drop us, but he didn't! He is doing alright. It's hard
to find a woman to come with us sometimes, and it's hard if we bring
one that talks a lot so that we can't really teach. But he is still
progressing. Thanks for the prayers.

We taught a lady named sophie who is a member referral. this time we
had her member friend come with us and it went really well. She has
studied with a lot of religions especially with the Jehovah's
witnesses for 3 years but she never was baptized there because it
never felt right to her. We are excited for her to learn and search
for answers because she really does want to find the true church that
she can raise her kids in. It won't be easy but I believe some
miracles can happen!

General Conference was amazing of course. Some themes that really
stuck out to me were standing firm in our standards and being
obedient. Also giving our will to The Lord and loving others. I loved
President Monson's talk about loving one another. Some of my bigger
regrets come from times when I was too selfish and thoughtless to
reach out to others and show Christlike love and gratitude. We can't
be too kind and like he said, some of the worst words are 'it might
have been'. I am going to focus on that and giving my will to God.
That's a tough one but they promise it brings the most happiness and
blessings so I'm working on it :)

It was alexander's first conference and he was OBSESSED of course. He
gets more and more excited about the restored gospel. Also I told him
I was going to come back with my family after my mission is over and I
said it's too bad that my family doesn't speak Spanish. he says
there's no problem because he can understand a lot! Ha so be excited
about that family.

Joaquin said he would come to the Sunday morning session of
conference. We made a little treat/activity bag for his kids out of
things we had found around the apartment haha. We were sitting and
waiting and super super bummed that he hadn't come. Angry and sad
almost. And OF COURSE guess which talk was being given? The gratitude
one by Elder Uchtdorf. I was having a mini battle there. It's like he
was talking right to me in the very moment, it was great and it helped
me just be like... It's ok. And thankfully 1 or 2 talks later Joaquin
came in with his niños! We about died. We took them to the Spanish
translation room, gave them the bag and thought: good luck! Hahah we
went back to the English room so excited. The Spanish room didn't have
too many seats so we thought we'd let others have them. We were SO
happy. So I learned to just be grateful and it'll all work out! Keep
praying for him please, he needs it. Pray that we will know what to do
to further help him.

In between Sunday sessions some people from the Spanish and English
wards did a potluck which was great. Joaquin and his kids stayed and
had fun. (they were sweaty because they were literally running around) 

haha I love them so much! 

A cool
miracle happened there. We were just talking when the elders came up
to us and said "hey go talk to that lady she lives in your area!"
Apparently a Peruvian lady member from the English ward went outside
the church for a little (during the potluck) and found another
Peruvian lady who was out for a walk and invited her to come inside
and she did! Haha so she met a bunch of members and had some food and
we got her information and we will be visiting her this week! Pretty

So yeah! Stay strong and have courage and make goals from conference
and do them!! I love you all and I know that this church is the true
church of Christ.

Love, Hermana Barlow

Ps. I also loved the talk about Joseph Smith and also the one about
the Resurrection by D. Todd Christofferson

Thursday, April 3, 2014

It's still true.

Hola otra vez!

Ok... So this week also was, ya know. A little less than what we hoped
and dreamed but hey! I'd still say I'm living the dream, it's a
privilege to serve The Lord.

Juana unfortunately did not make it to the ward family home evening
on Monday. When they say they have their own ride, never trust them!!
I've learned that in my mission but I always just believe them. :( but
the tender mercy was... that the activity went really well. Hna Simmons
and I were in charge of the lesson and activity, and the past couple
times when the other missionaries have done it, it has been really
good. So that morning we still didn't for sure know what to do! We put
some scriptures on some cards and decided to put them in groups and
have them act out the Book of Mormon scripture stories. We didn't know
how it would turn out or if it'd be lame or what. But it was a huge
hit! Everyone loved it and was laughing and they learned a lot too
about what the scriptures can offer. We got a lot of compliments and
I'm just thankful that all went well. It was a blessing!

Tuesday we saw Joaquin. His niños were still at day care so
finally it was peaceful! He has been receiving answers about the Book
of Mormon and he is loving church. His issue at the moment is that he
isn't recognizing his answers to be answers about baptism so we were
helping him with that. It was so funny, I was literally taking a
breath before inviting him to be baptized when he said "I'm gonna pray
about baptism in your church!" Hahahah so I think he knew what I was
about to ask? Idk. But as many know, hell starts to break lose when
they want to do that. Unfortunately we haven't talked to him since
then and he didn't come to church. We are kind of freaking out so pray
for him please!!

Another cool lesson with a less active helped me see the power of the
Book of Mormon in action. Ok so she is less active right? Only comes
every so often and has a testimony, but not very strong. A couple
weeks ago we invited her to read the Book of Mormon every day (she has
read it before but it has been a while) so any whoo so this week she
was so excited to tell us that she had been doing it! She has loved it
so much. She is a hair stylist and she told us about some people that
she had already talked to about it. We hadn't even invited her to
search for missionary opportunities yet, she had a natural desire to
tell people about it. It was so cool, because that is what the Book of
Mormon does!

Sooo yeah I finished the Book of Mormon today! ITS STILL TRUE. Hah no
really though... it was really amazing reading it this time with a brand
new copy that hadn't been written in yet. That helped me have a fresh
view of everything. I loved marking it in blue=missionary work red=
atonement of Christ and yellow= doctrine of Christ. While reading it I
came up with about 15 new ways to read/ things to look for and study
while reading the Book of Mormon just as I did with these topics.
So... I plan on doing all of those even though it may take a couple
years O__O ha but anyway I love love Moroni 7 and what he teaches
about faith. Can't have faith without hope, can't have either without
a meek and lowly heart, and if we don't have charity we have NOTHING!
Oh dear. And in the next chapter Mormon says it again in ch8:14 of the
importance of faith hope and charity together. Then in chapter 10:20
again. And in verse 22 it teaches more about how if we are in iniquity
and want to continue in iniquity, we can't have hope in that future.
Only despair. While reading all of these I thought of DyC 4:5 (all
about missionary work) "and faith, hope, charity and love, with an eye
single to the glory of God, qualify him for the work." Soo now I
understand a lot more about why hope and charity have to be attributes
that qualify us for the work and being disciples of Christ. Pretty

Shout out to my girl CP (chels Pinnock) for the awesome birthday
package this week.

Casi general conference!

I love you all!! Stay strong