Monday, October 7, 2013

Photos -- Me and my Yerbal Sisters!


Look at these crazy awesome people I live with!

Hermana Peterson

Hermana Pazmino





WEEK 30 – “Spiritual Atomic Bomb, Miracles, and Our Saints Are Ready!”

Dear Familia y Amigos!

My heart is so full of joy for you all!! I love you all so much!! I thought about you all many times through out the conference. The powerful talks! The inspiring messages! The unity of our leaders in defending the faith of God will never be forgotten. As the conference ended, President Monson waved to us all. I could not help but feel the Savior’s arms around me, or the angels that protect me…offering me a sense of belonging, a sense of love. I had tear filled eyes as I watched as our beloved prophet when he left the conference center. Conference had come and gone all too fast, yet thanks be to the Lord God, the spirit still dwells here, it abides, I pray ever fervently that it shall not leave. 

The work of salvation is in every moment of this world. I FEEL so honored to be apart of this work! It is in every thing. I agree with the words of President Monson, it was one of the most uplifting and inspiring conferences. The Heavens are open, our saints are ready, and our leaders are united in the Lord. I know that they are inspired, righteous men and woman of God. This is His work. Thank you for your prayers. I feel as though our Lord and God prays for our success daily. Shall we not go on in so great a cause?

More than ever I know that I am a worthy Daughter of God. I am a part of the work. I am already doing a part of my life mission! I am AM A MISSIONARY! What prayers are offered. What strength we have…though agency plays a role, who can deny the Holy Ghost? I know that the Holy Ghost will carry our message into the hearts of those we teach and into the hearts of those who are ready. I LOVE THIS GOSPEL! I love this feeling I have. 

During the conference I could not help but think of you guys. There were so many times when I felt your comments or felt your hugs. LOL…or wished I could eat the crepe breakfast with you! :P Haha! 

One of those times was during O´Divine Redeemer. Wow! I could almost see the tears through my own mommy’s eyes!  :). When President Monson talked about a “Heart of Gold”…I thought of you Kaleb. When Hermana Carole M. Stephenson talked about the priesthood and covenants…Daddy you were right there. When I thought about the work of salvation…I also thought of you Karina Darling girl! When Elder Dyches talked about The Hiding Place I remembered all those times, Mom, you would read aloud to us great books and classics. :D I LOVE MY FAMILY!!!

Our investigadors (investigators) are PROGRESSING!! YES this is a huge blessing of the Lord. I seriously felt like I could go no more. My heart and faith said to hold on though after a very discouraging week. Then the day dawn broke!! It was beautiful to see. As we were diligent, as we kept good attitudes, and we pressed on the Lord gave us the opportunity to find nuevos, place fechas, and change lives. We found a boy about 19 who had so many questions. He declared, “How do we enter the presence of God?” We asked him how he would do it. He said, “I need to repent. Yet I am not perfect.” Then he thought, “How can I be clean? I want to be clean!” This was a beautiful moment for my companion and I. It was wonderful to teach him that God has a plan for him, and that he can be clean of his past, and that he can feel the Love of God for him and enter into His presence after this life.

We had a milagro (miracle) this week, a powerful faith building real milagro!! It was with an incredible woman who was vibrant and full of love. About two weeks ago, we met with her. SHE set her Fecha (baptism date)!! That was wonderful. She came to church and then…she was hit with an illness. We had not seen her for two weeks, until Viernes en la noche. It was 8:52pm. While heading back home we felt that we needed to stop and see Shirly. She came stumbling out of the house. She was instantly scared when she saw us. We cautiously and quietly said, “Shirly”?? Her health had deteriorated her image a lot. She openly stated she doesn`t feel anything and desired to not even live anymore. The beautiful light was gone from her eyes. She looked like she was walking dead. It was awful. We took her hand and I began to pray out loud. I began to pray that God would heal her. We don´t have the priesthood, yet I know the Lord heard and answered our prayers. I know that God is the God of the living. I know that God answered our prayers. She healed quickly after that night. She is happy. We are going to meet with her today. The Lord God has blessed us and her!

The Lord God is with us. We are His children. It says that the truth angers those who are wicked. I know that the truth is at times hard to listen to. Yet my soul illuminates with such love for God, for my faults and weaknesses, yet I know he makes weak things become strong unto me. 

Thanks for always being here for me family! I know I could never do it without you! LOVE YOU ALL SO VERY MUCH. Until next week. ¡¡¿VAMO ARRIBA!!!

Hermana Hansen


Monday, September 30, 2013

Hermana Pazmino & Wonderful Memories!






WEEK 29 “The Day Dawn is Breaking & He is Shooting Himself in the Foot”

Dear Familia y Amigos! :)

Wow! This week has felt long in some ways and short in other ways. I know that the Lord has really helped me overcome some things though. I am still in Yerbal. Sad to say it has been a battle—and lately, every day to think, wow… 6 more weeks of Yerbal. There has been many a time when I have felt like I couldn´t go on...yet something inside of me said "hold on". When there are transfers it’s often a good time to make new metas, GOALS. You know me. I am so much my mother´s daughter... Goals! How can I improve? What lack I yet? Sometimes that list gets pretty long. Yet I guess that’s our way of saying, I am not perfect. Lord if thou wilt thou canst make me whole. To which the master siempre (always) responds, "I will, be thou whole." First it is by our faith, our actions, and our diligence that we become clean, whole, and free from the sins that hang on our hearts and minds.

I AM SO FREAKIN EXCITED FOR GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!!!

This past week so many answers came…so many moments of comfort. I know that Yerbal is preparing me for different types of trials that I will have in my life. I know that the Lord is in His work and though my efforts are not shown in numbers or on paper I am changed. I love my companion and I have come to know the Lord in a way that is beautiful to me. 

This past Sunday I gave a talk that I call "Teach Me To Walk In the Light". Thanks be to the Lord that I was able to deliver a message about the Love of Christ and His light—which is a part of each one of us. I spoke about how we should forsake those things that are no longer worthy of light and put them in their place with the Love and healing power of Christ. (Romans 13:12 and The Light of Gods Love by: Dieter F. Uchtdorf). Teach me Dear Lord to walk in the Light.

A few nights ago I had the chance to walk along the streets. We were looking for an antinguo investigador. We came across this elderly man named Flor Pinto. He has had a tough life. He lives in the country to care for live stock and garden, yet recently moved back to the "city" (which isn’t really a city) to care for his health. He told us of his many experiences and openly admitted that he doesn’t believe in God. He talked with us and asked us "why do people suffer? Why do we go through things that are bad?" He kept talking. Finally he slowed down and took a breath... Then it went silent. We started to talk with him. My companion shared with him the Book of Mormon about opposition in all things. Yet he didn’t want to listen... Finally I felt the testimony grow within me. I felt such love for this man, and at the same time I was tired that he wasn’t even caring to hear the beautiful promises of the Lord. I know with all my heart that God is the God of the living and that agency is a precious gift of God. We are free to look on the positive or the negative. That will be moments in our life when it is dark and when it is full of hurt and pain, yet I know with out a doubt that there will always be light after the dark of night.

I told this man that if he desired to know for himself that this church was true to come and see for himself. I encouraged him to look and ask questions, to open his heart and let the Lord talk to his soul, because I always know the Lord has something to say to me when I do this. I told him about how God is patient. He is loving. He is the Lord of our souls and the author of our salvation. I know that today is the day that Flor can accept the gospel of Light and the Love of God. That he doesn´t have to sit in darkness, but to have a peace and the knowledge that his life has purpose. He looked at me with a lot of concentration. He didn´t blink, he looked at me. I saw such light enter his eyes. Then it happened and this scripture entered my mind…for the natural man is an enemy to God and has been forever and ever unless he yields to the enticings of the Holy Spirit and putteth of the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement of Christ." HIS NATURAL MAN KICKED IN. He denied the spirit which I know testified to him of his divine origin.... It was quite frustrating... He started to talk again... about trials and suffering. I kindly invited him to pray and that if he wanted to know more we invite him to come and see... Only the Lord knows if he will or not

After this experience we went to a house of a member to see if they could accompany us to a lesson with one of our investigadors named Leonardo. Elias Goygochea came with us. It was at first a odd lesson.... lots of sarcasm… if Spanish has sarcasm.... lol. Elias had been told some background about Leonardo but not much. As we started the lesson, I was amazed at how calm Elias was. He sat and then rose to make a statement. He told of his dark past and how he had been alone, hurt, and made a lot of serious mistakes in his life. He invited Leonardo with such love and power of "every member a missionary" to come to church, to see what the church is and sealed this invitation with a solid testimony of the Church has changed my life. I have felt the Loving power of the atonement in my life and I know that I will forever be changed because of this knowledge. Come and See for yourself. 

I finally translated all of this (in our visit)... By the time I did I felt an overwhelming love of God for Elias, for my sisters, for my life that I have, for the knowledge and for the answers of Hope that I have received. I was amazed and I felt the redeeming power of the Savior flow through me like a gentle waterfall. I did get emotional. The spirit hummed throughout the room... it was silent. It was clear, my words were of encouragement and a second witness of the truth to what Elias had testified.

Yet when all was said and done, Leonardo stated frankly that he had no desire to attend church. I looked at him in surprise. His obstinacies were negative... I felt a little perturbed... I was thinking to myself, this is kind of like you are shooting yourself in the foot. The Heavens are open unto you, Leonardo, and I know not more what you need?! I felt frustrated yet full of such pure love for this man and desired him to put down his defenses, pride and social status and come to the Lord God. I felt like the lesson ended well though. The Lord is in this work. He testified to my soul that He has a plan. This deep knowledge has brought me closer to my Lord and Savior. Though Yerbal be like a millstone around my neck, may I constantly remember the Lord God, may I forever be an instruments in his Hands. Though I be but a mortal woman, I know the Lord gives and the Lord takes (and He has given me mucho).

2 Thes. 5-24 has really helped me this week – Look into it! 

THERE IS ALWAY SUN IN THE MORNING, NIGHT HAS NO POWER. The DAY DAWN IS BREAKING!!!!

Hoy Es El DÌA!!!!
Hermana Kaitlyn Hansen


Monday, September 16, 2013

WEEK 28

Dearest Familia y Amigos,

There are so many people who have emailed me this week! WOW I feel loved! It was at first hard for my brain to switch over to English and wow... I have been able to write many people and have found so much strength for the coming week.

Mom, to answer your question, there are areas to print of things, if you send me a link to another area that is not in the LDS web page we have been asked not to open it, if the talk is in the email I can print it out for later. We are not using the social network things yet. Uruguay is behind in the technological sense.

Uruguay is going well!! My area is good. I feel like this week has flown by. Quite frankly there are so many different things to write and so little time. Recently I went to Chuy, which is right on the border of BRAZIL and Uruguay. It was sweet! I went to Brazil this past week too. We did an Open House for the church and wow, amazing things happened!

The Casa Abiertas “Open Houses” are for the people who don´t know much about the church and would like to learn more. There are a lot of things that we teach and discuss at these. The first 3 lessons in “Preach My Gospel” are taught and we do what we can to help bring the spirit. I have so many amazing stories I could share. There was this couple that came in near the end of the night. Raul is an Atheist and his girlfriend was very religious. There was a special spirit in the Sacrament room. I saw Camilla take the hand of Raul and a few tears entered her eyes. I felt like angels were softening the heart of Raul and that we were perhaps the answer to many silent prayers of this devoutly religious woman. They were from Santiago, Chile and this was the first time that they had heard the gospel. 

We might be having a baptism next week! I am so excited. Her name is Shirly. Wow! She is so prepared. We have had so many people fall through, yet not this one. She herself personally set the date for her baptism. She has a strong love and faith for God. I know that He has prepared her for us.

Thank you, Daddy, for your words about faith and being able to change a whole city. I think that is exactly the difficult road the Lord has called me to bare here. I feel overwhelmed at times. The salvation of so many is waiting to be done, yet there is peace in knowing that the Lord’s plan will always succeed. I know the Lord is God. That he will always help those who trust in him and who are exactly obedient. I know the Lord lives and that he Loves His missionaries. The more I am out here in the field the more I love and am strengthen by the counsel of the Prophets. I AM SO EXCITED FOR GENERAL CONFERENCE!! My poor Liahona… it is so battered and worn... lol this is not good, but I know conference will help!

I love you all! I feel so much strength from you all! This church is true. I hope to grow a lot this Transfer.

I love this work!
Hermana Hansen



Monday, September 9, 2013

WEEK 27 “Agency, Light, and Moses' Great Example”

Hello Familia y Amigos!

There is such a strong sense of why am here and where I am going. As I have reflected and thought about how I care about doing things right. So often I think one feels they come short and too often we feel inadequate. Yet, I love the promise in Joshua 1:9, “Be strong and of a good courage. Be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed, for the Lord thy God is with you, whither so ever thou goest.”

Agency has been a principle I have come to know well.  It is something I have come to understand and to feel very strongly about throughout my mission. Agency is a powerful principle of maintaining personal righteousness. Agency--it is something that can make or create, ruin or destroy. Something I love about agency is that through the atonement—there is the ability to change, to progress. And what is even more important is the ability to be forgiven. This is that part that wraps around agency. It frees the sin bound soul and heals the heart wrenched man. It is important to remember that each one of our examples matters! My agency is what I can control.

We have had very little progress here. The people here are quite rude, yet THERE IS hope smiling brightly before us!! We know that our works are not in vain. The Lord is a God of mercy.

Prayer is a constant companion for me. I find that both the Lord and Satan are sending me promptings. Yet I look to the light and it filleth my understanding (see Romans 13:12 and 1 Cor. 4:6).

I LOVE THESE SCRIPTURES! Here are some insights I have found this week:
  • Moses:1 Do you have your scriptures close? vs. 2-- the Glory of God is intelligence, that He promises to illuminate our minds and fill them with light
  • 1 Cor. 4:6-- also endure His presence & cross reference to Moroni 7:48, 1 John 3:1 vs13-15.
  • The Lord gives Moses
    • 1.) a deep knowledge of who he is. Which reminds us that Satan has no power when we know who we are.
    • 2.) Gives Moses an experience to compare with the false glory of Satan.
    • 3.) God allows Moses to be tried and tested, because through our trials we are proven worthy of much more. We will be given more blessings and trials that will shape us and create us. WE ARE TESTED to the same degree as our experience.
    • 4.)Look to God and Live --Mosiah 4:19-21, cross reference D&C 10:5 and Luke 22:31, also see vs. 24 after we have stood firm, and yes it took effort (3X) Moses was rewarded. He is not only had a testimony his heart was converted to the Lord (2 Nephi 31:20).  Vs 25 The Lord returns…which reminds us that He never forsakes us. From all of this He now has a servant who will be steadfast and immovable. He is a great example of the Believers and an instrument in the Hands of God. It has helped me to remember the mission and example of Moses. With his people did they all look to God and live? Were they ready for the higher commandment? Did all follow Moses? Do all remember God? Did not Moses perform miracles for the Lord?  So many valuable lessons to learn from him.


Be happy! Learn to rely on the Lord and know that the Lord is in His work. I DO so testify, the Lord is my light. I may not have very good numbers with contacts and I may not know what to do at times, but I know that I shall not be dismayed, nor shall I be afraid, the Lord my God is with me.

Love you all!
Hermana Hansen


Monday, September 2, 2013

WEEK 26 -- “Leonardo, Lamoni, Lightning, Laughter, & Lame Companions”

Hello Dearest Family & Friends,

Es un placer para mi hablar y escribir con ustedes hoy. Es un poco dificil para mi cambiar mi mente a ingles pero... :D yo puedo. It is a pleasure for me to speak and write with you today. It's a little hard for me to change my mind English but ... : D I can.

This past week has been full of such different types of trials. I am so grateful for the time I have been given to contemplate life, the reason I am in the mission, and learn to be more self-less in this divine work of the Lord.

I have seen miracles as I have devoted myself to the work. I feel much better than I have in a long time. The night is far spent, the day is at hand: let us therefore cast off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armor of light.

I experienced an amazing scriptural experience the other day! We were in the house of this unique lady, named Blanca. Up until last Saturday I didn’t know she had Alzheimers (the illness Zeke had). Many “choice” experiences occurred with her...Lol! Her son, however, is such a strong figure. He has so much knowledge and takes care of his mom in her old age and his name is Leonardo.

So we started a lesson with his mom Saturday night and we sang a hymn and then entered Leonardo. He immediately told us his experience with the missionaries... it was pretty negative, but we talked with him some more. I felt prompted to start talking to him about the pre-mortal world and to help him gain an eternal perspective. We talked about our purpose here on earth, the gifts God has given us, and how agency is such an important and huge part of why we are here. The spirit was so strong as I testified.

Leonardo openly admitted that he did not believe in God, only a grand spirit. Instantly a part of the scriptures entered my mind, Alma 22. This is when Aaron and his brethren are amongst the Nephites. Aaron is teaching the father of King Lamoni. This was seriously an incredible lesson. Everything that we had taught him so far was in correlation with this scriptural text. He believed in a great spirit, he believed in prophets of old and had read the Bible. He wants to believe and with what faith he has--he gave to us! I was amazed. We just changed up the names--I was Aaron, Leonardo was the king, and Hermana Pazmiño was Ammon! lol It was incredible how everything worked out! It was incredible to me how Leonardo felt the spirit of what we were sharing with him. I felt the words coming as we talked about the things of our heart.  The promise that we will not be confounded before men is a real promise!! 

He said we gave him a lot to think about and that he desires to know more. Near the end of the lesson I testified that no matter how far you think you are from the Savior, He will always take your hand and walk with you every step of the way. He will never leave your side. The spirit testified of this reality. I know this is true, that the Savior will walk every long, dusty, and perhaps difficult road because He cares for us. I know the Savior is my dearest friend and I know the Savior came to be with us as we taught Leonardo that day. 

"The difficult path you are called to bare may in fact be your only path to shine!"

The other night there was a huge rain storm!! It was amazingly strong. We thankfully were in our house. Yet water was leaking through the window. We have this storm protector curtain on the outer parts of our windows (we live in an apartment) and well me being supposedly "smart" Ha!Ha! NOT. Opened up my umbrella and was like “okay, I can handle a little rain and close the storm curtains at the same time”. I opened the window and it was like nothing I have ever experienced before. Haha! With my umbrella open I still faced this huge amount of rain!! Dad, it’s like that one time at 5th year girl’s camp when it rained.  It was JUST LIKE THAT! 

So I soon realized that it was way more than I could handle and I start screaming! Like a man scream...HaHa!  And all I can do is yell... I am in shock. My companion looks at me, like "what the--!!!! Are you Crazy!!!?? AHHH I need to help her!" So she ends up sticking her whole self out the window behind my umbrella and closing the storm curtains. Haha!!! We both shut the windows soaking wet and laughing so hard. I can honestly tell you it was HILARIOUS!! Lo Maximo!

"Life is not about waiting for the storms to pass, it is learning to dance in the Rain".

We had a short-plaza stay with us this past week, named Katherine. Corto plaza- is the equivalent of a “Mini-mission”. She has been a member of the church for only 4 months. The trials of the mission are really hard for converts... There are so many doctrinal questions and wow there is still a lot to learn, but SHE is incredible! The reason we have her is because Hermana Peterson has a hurt ankle and it is getting worse. She has been out for the whole change.... IT is really sad. Oh my dear companion! She might have to go home. The advice of Dr. Allen gave me before I left has been so great--stretch every day!! It really does make a difference. I have lost 14 pounds in the mission... it is weird. Yet is all good!

There are many stories I could share about drunk investigators, lesbians stocking us, and crazy moments of Spanish, but know it is all still good here mom. Don´t worry! We are being safe, learning SO many new things, and learning to be a light in the darkness!!! :D I truly believe that this mission is like Jonah and the Ninevehites... Haha! Not every one likes to be told to repent...yet just like Nineveh, all of YERBAL will be converted one day!! 

I LOVE THE OBRA MISIONAL! (Mission Work!!)
Love you guys,
Hermana Hansen


Monday, August 26, 2013

WEEK 25

Hello My Wonderful Family & Friends!

Having a latina compañera is la MAXIMO. (<--- esta palabra es la favorita de mi Compañera Hermana Pazmiño!) Ella es en serio capaisisimo like fortisisisismo in musica (She is seriously like very strong and compassionate music). My head is spinning with Spanish and English. At times it really is much easier to speak in Spanish.

MOM!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY YESTERDAY!! You were in my thoughts and I was like Yes, today is a special day! My wonderful mom, this is her day! Lately I have been thinking of how to help a dear friend of mine here in Uruguay. Her kids have been acting up and yesterday (possibly due to it being your birthday) I received promptings of how to help my dear friend here with her kids. I remembered some of the things that you have done for me and taught me. I created a 10 Steps to build a happy home chart. Remember all those charts you use to make us?! Chore charts, exercise charts, love of learning charts, charts for bed time, charts for practicing the cello, etc. LOL!

Those were helpful to keep us on task, yet it was other things that made a bigger difference – it was all those times you read aloud to us, those quite hours on Sundays when gospel truths were shared, the example of prayer, and the scripture insights you were always giving us. It was those times when I was angry over a decision and yet you still stayed firm knowing it was best --that has made me who I am today. It was the hugs and consolation when I was sad that helped me overcome my trials and challenges. Mom, I may be lacking certain things, yet I know that God sent me an angel to watch over me.

This week was WOW --stressed filled, spiritually building, and an opportunity for new lessons learned. A major stress was that we found out that one of our investigators is lesbian… that was a bit of a shock and we realized she had been hitting on us. We asked our leaders what the steps were to help her and teach her. They said that it was not a good idea for us to help her – even a bit dangerous for us to stay involved. It was difficult to know how to end our relationship with her with kindness and friendship.  After time some stress built up on that topic and it looked like we were avoiding her and it seemed like none of our leaders were helping us --because they had work and families. We lost our cell phone too and the whole world felt a little like it was falling apart. We talked with the bishop and well he said he didn´t have the keys to help us... great. There is still so much I lack in the Spanish language and so I think he thought I didn´t respect him as a leader --which was not the case at all. My hope is that we can still work on the same page! 

Anyways, I ended up crying it out and Hermana Dutra—and she helped me so much!! She helped me see the perspective just like you would, mom. Right now I feel as if many lessons have been learned through this experience and I am so grateful for the things I have learned. It is important to understand that God really does have a reason and it is important to honor our leaders and respect their decisions. It is okay to cry and to feel emotional, but it is also important TO RISE ABOVE the things that are bringing us down and to stay strong! We must work hard and only give it our best! I have learned to hold my tongue more, to speak only kindness, to not compare, to make specific goals, and then keep them! Wow! The Lord is really helping me. I desire to be an instrument in his hands! To be shaped into more than I ever could become without him. He has really helped me this week with patience and Christ’s love. 

There is a need for patience with some of the members here, and to feel love for my new oro who is so far from home for her first time. Distance is relative for me, actually. I feel like you guys are still close--practically the same distance as it was when I was attending BYU-Idaho. IT is not that far! LOL! I feel that way nearly every day. I look forward to writing yet in all honestly I LOVE THE MISSION!!!!! I LOVE getting home at the end of a long great day full of miracles and my feet burn and my mind feels tired, but my spirit feels enlightened and I know I have done all I could do! WHAT A FEELING. I love this work! I love the testimony building experiences, the ability to express in both languages now and for the blessing of a spiritually empowering companion.

This past week we have had an incredible investigator to teach and work iwth. She is incredible! The Lord has prepared her to receive the gospel! She will be baptized next week! I am so excited. She has such a love for the Lord. Her name is Isabel Olivera.

My leaders here are astounding. The new Mission President came up and visited us this past week and Wow! He spoke with such power of his calling. I needed so much to hear the things he said. He talked about discipline  and obedience. Wow! Powerful! So often we are obedient for spurts of time, yet it is when we are self-disciplined to stay strong and to press on, well, that is when the miracles begin. I am so glad to have heard his message. I am grateful for the leaders who help us to make good use of what we have for work of the Lord.


The other night Spanish made a firmer click in my head! It was so amazing to listen to a conversation without having to focus on each of their palabras (words), translating and trying to gather the meaning.

There is a scripture story I have felt really strongly about this past week. It is covers the topic about how the Lord cares about the one. In a journey to another city, Jesus and his disciples stopped just outside of Samaria to buy food and rest. The dusty roads lingered on their feet and the exhaustion of teaching all day, healing the broken hearts, and infirm souls that the life of mortality bares down with its weight on the body. I can see it now. All day no one has been listening to the Son of God. They are hungry and tired. The Savior sends his disciples into Samaria to buy food. Yet, does Jesus join them, walking through the markets? NO. He waits and stays back. Then there comes a woman who is a sinner and recognized as such. She comes as she always does to the well. 

The Lord is waiting there to talk to the one. Perhaps it was this Samaritan woman that needed to hear His message the most the afternoon. Perhaps it was this woman that needed the love and redeeming joy of forgiveness the most in her life. It is a beautiful example from our Lord. He gets to know this woman and her heart and literally raises her broken heart and sin bound soul to a higher level of forgiveness because he was willing to patiently wait for the one who would accept him. It says at the end of John I think, that not enough books could fill the works of Christ. Can we not find reason to rejoice?! We are all beggars; we all look to God for aid. Look to God and LIVE. This is a special insight gained this week!

Love you all so much
Hermana Kaitlyn Hansen


Monday, August 19, 2013

WEEK 24


Hello Dearest Familia y Amigos!

It is so good to hear from you all! I LOVED LOVED LOVED the fotos! Thank you so much for sending me information about Kaleb receiving his Patriarchal Blessing and Karina her endowments! Wow! What changes. Thank you for being wonderful and close to the Lord. Karina, thank you for the quote and update on your life… I LOVE You. 

WOW! LOTS and LOTS of changes! I am a trainer for a new and wonder Ecuadorian :D Sister Missionary. SHE IS seriously incredible. She is 20 years old and YES, my wonderful Karina, you read that right, she is from ECQUADOR :D I get a little piece of where you are going right here with me too. She is really amazing. Her name is Hermana Pazmiño. From what I can tell so far the youth programs and the strength of the people/members in her country is simply astounding. Hermana Pazmiño is prepared for the mission and loves the Lord with all her heart and she has such a beautiful heart. Her love for life is so beautiful and I seriously love being her trainer. We have already begun to perform milagros por Dios (miracles for/with God).

We had a baptism this past week! Maria Julia is 87 anos. It was seriously a miracle that she got baptized. We fasted and prayed with all our hearts. It was a neat experience. I hope that we can continue to be diligent and full of faith so that the Lord will lead and guide us. We have 4 or 5 more baptisms planned too. May the Lord God lead us and help us. They are all wonderful people. With God’s Love we hope to extend and help them complete their commitments with the Lord. And WOW! THE LIGHT that shines from their eyes directly after their baptism…words cannot describe this moment. It is awesome!

This past week we were trained and met our new OROS. The excitement was wonderful! I love being around other missionaries. I am grateful for the determination and love of other missionaries. We are unified and our friendships are built on eternal principles. One Elder made a comment that helped me immensely. I came into the trainers conference with a few questions. Elder Barlow answered these questions. He bore testimony of what his trainer taught him and what he learned. I think we can all apply them to our lives.

1.) Look for milagros (miracles) every day and learn to wait on the Lord. Be they small or big. (Don´t forget to look for the Forget-me-nots amidst the giant Orchids of life)
2.) Teach and live the "why´s" of obedience. Our agency is the most precious gift we have. As we learn to control ourselves and give ourselves to the Lord, He makes us whole. 
3.) Use the scriptures unto conversion. I truly agree with this. It is the doctrine of Christ that heals. It is the peace of His words that guides, that protects, that applies to everyone.

A thought hit me as we were riding back from the transfers, in that all of us are SO different. WE all feel different, have different personalities, yet it is our love in Jesus Christ that unifies us. It is the GOSPEL that relates to every single person. I know and testify that this is true. God knows us. He provided the way to return through Jesus Christ. 

I am grateful for personal revelation, for the many opportunities to grow, and for the angels that are here round about us to bare us up. I believe in Christ. I believe in redemption. I believe that as we come unto God He will make us whole. Every day I feel like I am lacking in one way or another, but I have seen the Lord enter my life, and make up the difference and more.

I really feel like the quote Karina sent me: “The Lord can perform remarkable miracles with a person of ordinary ability who is humble, faithful, and diligent in serving the Lord and seeks to improve himself.  This is because God is the ultimate source of power" (James E Faust)

I know that there will always be trials and there will always be opposition. May the Lord prepare and strengthen me to overcome the challenges that come our way. 

I am so happy all is going well. WELCOME TO THE FAMILY JOHN from HONG KONG!! May the Lord bless you for your awesome personality and hard work. What amazing blessings come to those who believe. 

With each new day, I thank the Lord that He provided the way.
Sincerely,
Hermana Hansen


Monday, August 12, 2013

WEEK 23 – “Dear to the Heart of the Shepherd”


Dearest and Wonderful Family & Friends!

WELCOME Exchange Student!! I have forgotten your name, sorry, yet I know you are already awesome!! May God bless you and Kaleb as you both attend American Heritage this year. What a great opportunity!

The reason I named this letter, “Dear to the Heart of the Shepherd” is because I feel strongly that we are children of the most High God. I have come to know my Savior more than ever this week and I am so grateful for the blessings and faith building experiences I have had.

I often ask myself, “Have I done all I could for my area? Am I a good missionary, because we have had so little success? And why are the people not accepting the message we have? It is right in front of them!!! The truth, the spirit, the love of Christ, the evidence and the words of Christ. 

As I turned to the scriptures in searching for my answers I could not help but cry and pray for the Lord to help me understand. And yes, He did answer my questions and so many more. I felt Him lift my spirit to a higher field of view. I felt such love for my brethren, for the people I have met and for the one’s I have not yet met. I felt the tears come as I read of the prophecies found in 2 Nephi 24-33. With each verse, I felt more that my Lord knows exactly what I am experiencing and He seemed to cry with me. I could feel the words of Nephi’s sorrow, and share in the feeling of having the people receive the words and esteem them as naught. How come they so often say to me…God has already talked to His people and we have no more need of His words or new revelation?

But who are you to say that God has only one people, be that Israel? Who are you to say that the Lord is done speaking to His children? Who are you to say that there is no more to learn? I KNOW with all my heart that God’s love is infinite and it doesn’t stop with the changing of years of time periods. I have felt of His love for myself. It extends endlessly. I know God lives and that he has prepared the Book of Mormon to come forth. And I know that there are still more records that will be given when the people are ready for them.

I can honestly say that I have seen so many things and heard so many vile justifications of  the "why not´s" and "your church is not true because of this, and He loves us all and all of the churches..." YES, He does love us all, but there is just one God, and He has one Church and one faith. They see the words, they feel the spirit, yet they open not their hearts. There are those faithful and humble few that think they have found the truth, yet they are lead away by the learned men who lean not to the Lord for understanding. 

I have really enjoyed and received encouragement from Alma 29:9-10 and Alma 26:16.
It is good to have messages like these when times are tough. These past six weeks have been pretty rough.  However, even though my companion, Hermana Peterson and I, experienced a prueba de nuestra fe (a test of our faith--Ether 12:6). We also experienced a miracle this week.  This powerful, faith building experience has helped me to know that the Lord wanted to make sure I would do the work His way and rely on him more.

Domingo (Sunday), we had the opportunity to proselyte after attending church. We first talked with a potential investigator, but no matter how many times we have tried to build his faith and allow him opportunities to feel the spirit, to no avail, he resists and rejects our message. I could not help but cry after our time with him. As we walked away I felt so much love for that man, and desired him to accept the truth. I know the Holy Ghost testified to him, but he still rejected it. May God help soften his heart and prepare him to some day accept the gospel of Jesus Christ, which is the power unto salvation.

My leaders talked about not murmuring or complaining. I have been fortifying my efforts this week and well…they were proven true. I know God has heard and answered the prayers of my companion and I because later on Domingo, we were walking by this man that we often see around our area and he waved to us. I said to my companion, one day that man will hear and accept our message. Then a little bit later, he stopped us. We started to share our testimonies. He talked with us for about an hour.  And he said he is going to need to pray about if baptism in the church is right for him." ¡¡Que Milagro!!

Last night we had a wonderful Noche De Hogar (FHE) con our Stake President and Bishop-- both of whom are neighbors and in our ward. It was wonderful. The spirit was so strong. We were able to address this man’s needs! We invited him to church, and he is preparing to be baptized. Yerbal has not had a baptism since March! This is a milagro (miracle). I pray that my companion and I stay worthy of this miracle. 

The Quote from C.S. Lewis describes best the feelings and truth I feel, "Give me all...give me your weaknesses, your strengths...and I will give you myself. I will make you whole and full of light." I have through my desires and will have asked God to help make up the difference. EVERY time I open my mouth the Lord God is there. I feel weak and lacking many things. I feel like through Faith we are made whole, "If thou will, thou canst make me whole" He says I will, and says "thy faith hath made thee whole, go thy way and sin no more. Cross Reference D&C 6:33-37. This principle is true. WE need to learn to do things the Lord’s way.

We are ALL DEAR to the Heart of the Shepherd. He gives up on no one. He is still helping us look for and help the lost sheep find their way back into his fold. He loves and cares for each one of us. I am so grateful for my trials. Thank you Lord for answering my prayers.

Sincerely, to my Lord, family and Friends, We are children of God.
Hermana Hansen




The scriptures referenced earlier:
I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it. I do anot bglory of myself, but I glory in that which the Lord hath commanded me; yea, and this is my glory, that perhaps I may be an instrument in the hands of God to bring some soul to repentance; and this is my joy. And behold, when I see many of my brethren truly penitent, and coming to the Lord their God, then is my soul filled with joy; then do I remember awhat the Lord has done for me, yea, even that he hath heard my prayer; yea, then do I remember his merciful arm which he extended towards me.  (Alma 29:9-10)

Therefore, let us aglory, yea, we will bglory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever. Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his cmercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel. (Alma 26:16)


Monday, August 5, 2013

WEEK 22

Hello Familia y Amigos!!  I send my warmest hugs and happiest heart to all of you!!

The scripture you shared with me, mom, has so much power and significance behind it. Especially since it describes my week, lol! The Yerbal area is one tough cookie. Ether 12:2-6 has really helped me too. It is so important to seek to have the spirit-- not only with me, but to also make it a part of me. I am grateful for the scriptures. The more I read the more the eternal principle of missionary work becomes a part of me. I feel so blessed to have the knowledge I have and to have a strong testimony of the eternal principles found in the gospel and its doctrine. I love learning and studying the scriptures and words of the living prophets. They have impacted me so much. The Lord has sent me so many incredible personal helps and promptings. 

I love my companion. She has quite a few quirks and she talks about as much as Joe Stack does. Strange for a girl I know, haha, but it’s true. And…she ONLY speaks to me in Spanish. Unfortunately, none of our investigators are really progressing right now. We are here to teach and preach and to be tested. We are here to serve and share the light of Christ.  We are here to love and to grow.  

I agree with Alma when he proclaims, “Oh that I were an angel and could have the desire of my heart. To proclaim and have them believe.” I hope more people will want what we have. To want this light, this peace, and this hope that the gospel of Jesus Christ Brings!! I am so grateful for it in my life. It is not easy, because SO often we here the words, “I  can´t!” or “Get out of here!” or “I just really don´t care about God.” Well, my dear Uruguayian – Uruguagos --God Cares about you, each of you. And so do I.

Honestly, more than any passage of scripture I CAN completely relate with Alma 26. Haha! We go from house to house, hoping that at least some souls will be ready, that some souls care enough about God to listen and to let the spirit teach them and that they will come to sing the song of redeeming love.

We walk a whole lot here, and yes, mom, my shoes are working out great! My coats are warm and honestly I feel well prepared. Karina, when shopping/packing for your mission, make sure you pack colorful clothes. Stay away from the browns and blacks! I love colors. I am so happy when I wear colors.

I think I finally have everything figured out with how to cook for myself here and get a decent balanced diet. The weirdest thing I have eaten so far  is… (Bethany Bailey you would be proud) …cow stomach. It was honestly the grossest and weirdest thing ever!!! It was slimy... and had weird pores on it. HAHA! I am so glad I didn`t have them translate what it was until AFTER I had eaten it. But my stomach still freaked out anyway. That was some real Uruguaso wonderfulness... haha :).

The Lord is really here. He has given us direction. I feel so grateful for the experiences I have had. My love and respect for the prophet Nephi has grown while here, especially as I share with others his story found in the first part of the Book of Mormon. I love how Nephi wants to know the truth of his father’s words (Chpt 2) and how he shares them with Sam, his brother. I cannot help but think of Karina and I with this situation. Still to this day we share the special and good things that we have learned! We rejoice in the testimony building moments of the other. The Lord has blessed my life with dear siblings and I am grateful I can share all kinds of things with them.

I like how Nephi first learns for himself (gains a testimony) then testifies that he will follow the Lord, see 1 Nephi 3:7. Then he is tested. His brothers want to turn back and he ends up following through with 3 different plans. And finally, through the will of the Lord and perseverance, the plates are obtained. The Lord prepared him saying that you will be a ruler over your brethren. Nephi’s faith is tested when he is far from his parents and their support. Line upon line Nephi’s faith it built. He is prepared. He has a testimony and the Lord places him where he needs to be to bring forth His kingdom. He is someone who the Lord can depend on. I have felt the words come to me as I teach these principles at different times and in different ways. It is kind of funny how it doesn’t ever come out at the same lesson twice. It is wonderful how the words come and I feel like they really are meant for the individual.

I have seen miracles occur when we are talking with less active members. I like how we are actually getting to know them with the time we have here and we are able to talk, joke, laugh, and share our love for God with them. We are making friends and I feel like I actually know them! It is so fun to see their personalities shining through and to feel the spirit working through us in their homes, their lives, and their hearts. Thanks be to God for this. I know it is by his hand that I have the gifts and blessings that I have.

My companion and I were asked to give the lesson in Young Women’s yesterday. I felt the Lord work through me with this. I desired to inspire and uplift the hearts and lives of the Uruguayan youth. Yesterday I felt so much love for these young women. The words came and we fully expressed the importance of families and making, being apart of, and deciding now who you will be. It was a powerful experience.

Mom, how great it is that you have the opportunity to work with Ms. Updike! I dearly LOVE her and the valuable principles she has taught in the hallowed walls of American Heritage are of eternal significance. How wonderful for you. Honestly, it has brought me to tears! 

This work is amazing! This next week (Wednesday) we will get a new mission president. I know this decision is of God. Thank you for your prayers, for your examples, and for the blessings you share with me. How wonderful is the Love of the Lord! He is in our lives. I love reading your letters and seeing how the miracles and blessings of God are occurring in your every day lives. I pray for each of you-- every time I get a chance. We are not alone. You are loved! I LOVE YOU and I know with all my heart that God is our loving Heavenly Father. You each have incredible potential! Never forget that God is LOVE. Every time you feel love and give love--it is of God.

Love you all,

Hermana Hansen

Monday, July 29, 2013

WEEK 21 – “So Great a Cause as This!”


Hello Dearest Familia y Amigos!

It is so wonderful to read your letters! I am so grateful for the opportunity to write you all today. This week, and others, has just flown by. I cannot believe that I have spent 5 months on this mission already. This week came with different challenges, and the challenges of the coming week are going to be different still, yet my faith in God feels stronger and better. My love for this gospel is growing and changing, and I feel His angels around me every day. Sometimes I look back and realize He was there--walking the dusty roads of Yerbal with us. The more I ask Him questions, wait upon the Lord, and allow this gospel to shine through me, the more the answers come, the more our paths are lead in the right direction, and the more miracles happen.

This week was not monumental in baptism or people keeping their commitments, but it was still a good week. I admit it has been tough. The principle of agency has really beaten us down, yet I thank the Lord for preparing my companion and I to overcome this in hopes that this coming week we can mejorar nuestra compañerismo en la mejor manera (enhance our partnership in the best way). OH lol! Disculpe (excuse/pardon me). I am so use to thinking in Spanish. We are trying to better our companionship and the way we teach.

This past week I spoke, wrote, and studied EVERY DAY in SPANISH! Today is my English day. Starting tomorrow I am studying, speaking, learning, and thinking only in Spanish! The LORD is really helping us grow from doing this kind of intense study. He is changing our lives and I know that he is preparing the people for us. It is up to us to find them.

So many hearts, like Alma and Amulek, are hard. I found strength in Alma 37:33 hasta el fin (until the end). It really did make an impact. I am so grateful for the words of the scriptures. They help me in so many ways.

Lately I have had a little doubt enter my mind. Thanks be to the Lord for helping me over come it. I am on my way to understanding more as time goes on. I have researched for 6 days in anticipation to finding my answer. Last night, I made my doubt into a more specific question. He answered me specifically last night. I am working on breaking down my uncertainties into specific questions. It was hard to jump into the answers and really listen. When I decide to truly listen the Lord speaks peace and calms my fears. He helps me remember what I have learned. 

The principles found in "Lord, I believe" by Jeffery R. Holland have helped me immensely. To hold the (knowledge or) ground that you have already won (or attained), to fan the flames of your faith, to put forth your declaration of faith instead of your declaration of doubt. It has been incredible to see Ether 12:6 work in my life. I have received a stronger witness, thanks be to the Lord, after the trial of my faith.

Ether 12:6 is a scripture to highlight for Yerbal. It is tough here, yet I know the Lord is helping us and we will receive a witness after the trial of our faith. So MUCH is being required of missionaries, of members, and of the principle faith – here and everywhere. Testimonies alone are not enough. It takes a true conversion of the heart. I thank the Lord for the opportunities to be more converted in His ways.

May the Lord bless you all,
Hermana Hansen


Monday, July 15, 2013

WEEK 20

Hello Dearest Familia y Amigos of Mine!!

Thank you for writing me this week! It was good to read the words you wrote. I am so happy for Regina and her success! What blessing to her family. I know I have enjoyed the way she writes. She has a gentle and intelligent air to the way she writes. I like that. I hope to read her other books when I return. And thank you for sharing about Benoit´s sister! She sounds crazy WONDERFUL! lol We all love Benoit! lol How fun to get to know his sister.

This week has gone by in a wonderful way. I finally feel adjusted to missionary life. I live, breath, think, dream, and talk about the mission. My companion before was really quite "trunkie" (someone who thinks a lot about home). It feels like there is a higher standard where I am serving now. There are amazing things happening too. Through faith and trust in God hopefully we will see positive results and help more people attain the wonderful and sacred covenant of baptism. I have felt and seen miracles this week!

There was this one moment this week when I was talking with two men about the gospel. They were very religious and opinionated. They had talked to missionaries before and I didn´t really understand half of what they were saying, but I kept a prayer in my heart and relied on the promptings of the Holy Spirit. One of the "problems" they seemed to have with Joseph Smith was that he could have interpreted the words of God--translating the Book of Mormon differently --than the Lord would have wanted. I compared that to Moses and how he talked with God face-to-face LIKE Joseph Smith did.  Moses was given a higher law, yet the people weren’t ready. I phrased a question, “Do you think that Moses misinterpreted the 10 Commandments which is the foundation of religion on this earth?” They were surprised. They believe strongly in the bible and the 10 commandments, yet lol when they didn´t answer. I looked straight at them and said, “Moses didn’t misinterpret God’s word, and neither did Joseph Smith”.

As we continued to talk with them they asked me a question, the only part I understood was about the Holy Ghost.  The words came like a sun rising. I felt the words enter my mind and a page in preach my gospel came into my mind. A lightning of thought streaked across my brain. I talked about how the spirit prompts us that things are true. It is there to bear witness. Receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost is when it is able to dwell in you and become apart of your being and a guide for your life. It can only come through someone holding the authority of God and after you are clean through the covenant of baptism you can receive it. I was still unsure If I had answered his question, yet I turned and asked, “Did I answer your question?” He eyes were surprised and he commented that I had answered it sufficiently. He was a little taken back and SO was I--quite honestly. It was really a great experience.

This week my Zone Leaders started something called FUEGO EN 33. This is when we have a goal and we watch as fire for the gospel message is sparked in different areas in Trenta Tres! These goals are stretching us each day to reach them, have faith, and work hard!!! Honestly I have never felt so tired at the end of the day. IT FEELS SO GOOD! This work is incredible!

Last night the Fuego Meta was to place 3 fecha bautizmals. It was the end of a long week, we had worked hard, and honestly I was exhausted. When we received this text, my companion and I could not help but feel a little overwhelmed. We had less then 3 hours to find 3 people and help them to get ready for baptism. We went to a quiet place and said a prayer and then went forth diligently upon promptings. The faith of my companion as she offered a heart-felt prayer, with directness and trust—was honestly a beautiful experience. 

As we walked we talked with a lot of people. The first person not interested. Could it be, the second person? We talked with him. He knew a boy in the Barrio de Obolisquo who was serving right now his mission in Brazil. He listened to our message. We got his directions and made an appointment. It went really well... Then we continued to walk on.

Later we encountered two girls. We stopped and talked with them. The beginning of the conversation was a little shaky but as we pressed on they listened, we gained their respect and both felt the spirit. They both agreed to be baptized on the 28 of July!! The Lord had answered our prayers. I waited for disappointment to set in. We had worked and we taught with the Holy Ghost, we were so close to the Fuego! Yet even though the first boy had not accepted baptism... disappointment never came. It was amazing I was instead filled with love and gratitude to my Lord and God. For all that he had done for me. I am so grateful for the faith of my companion and for our diligence. I know the Lord heard and answered our prayers last night.

In 33 my Líderes de Zona are Elder Acosta y Elder Marroquine. I think you are familiar with them and their outstanding personalities. Their faith has transformed my mission. Their example has changed me and encouraged me to be ever closer to my Savior. They held a conference that was inspiring--teaching us about faith and repentance. It was an incredible conference. They teach with the spirit. They inspire my companion and I, the other Elders, and the rest of us to become all we can through the Lord. I am so grateful to be here on this mission! I feel empowered and I feel finally, YES this is what it means! This is how I desire to be! Yes Missionary work is an eternal Principle!

I had the chance to give a talk in Church yesterday. It went really well!! I am grateful for the opportunity to have given my testimony about "Every Member a Missionary". The words came through good preparation and feeling the Lord helping me. My confidence is gaining. I am grateful for this chance to grow in another language. Thank you mom for encouraging me to keep working hard!! Lol I needed that! <3

Blessed be the Lord. He is the way the truth and the Light! I LOVE this Gospel! It is amazing 70,000 MISSIONARIES and GROWING!!! ¡¡¡¡¡¡VAMO ARRIBA!!!!!!!

The Lord is my light! May He be with you! And as this week presents it’s challenges, may we over come them with faith and trust in our loving Heavenly Father.
Sincerely,

Hermana Kaitlyn Hansen

Friday, July 12, 2013

WEEK 19

WEEK 19

Hello Dear Family & Friends,

It feels so good to write you all today! I send my warmest hugs and my biggest smile to all of you! The Lord has really blessed me. The great thing (and the challenging thing obviously --yet lets not focus on that) is that with every new area and companion, you can start a-new. I have felt the redeeming power of the Lord as I am trying to set new goals and habits for this mission. 

My new companion is awesome! Her name is Hermana Peterson. I hope to get a photo for you all next week. (My camera broke... lol of course it did.) Our new area is considered one the hardest in the mission. Mom you remember that story about the guy that was going to Uruguay in the Mcdonald’s drive through? Well, we are good friends now and he is in the Secretary position right now. He told me that Yerbal of  Trenta Tres Uruguay is considered one of the hardest areas... Well, watch out Yerbal because Hermana Peterson and Hansen are ready and gearing up to build a solid foundation!

Hermana Peterson is like a mixture between Lisa Reid and Joe Stack... hahaha!! She is so unique and has a natural talent for learning the language. I seem to have a natural understanding of teaching (no where near perfect yet), but that seems to be a strong area for me. I am grateful for her positive and ready to work attitude. She had a hard companionship last transfer and we both feel so grateful for this change!! Our companionship is practically all Spanish speaking and so we are both progressing and helping this ward move forward. Right now only 37 members attend regularly…and this is out of 256 members! Yikes! MEMBERS ARE SO IMPORTANT—especially these 37! They are doing all they can, yet the Menos Activos (less actives) are really hard headed.... It is going to take a while, but with the Lord’s help all things are possible! VAMO ARRIBA!

I love my new Zone and district leaders. Wow! I have never met men like them in my life. I feel so grateful and blessed to have their example in my life. I have never seen the way these Elders teach. I could almost picture the Savior being a part of their lessons. They have the spirit with them, they teach and they love. They have 100% obedience 100% and trust in God and 100% faith in the principles of the Gospel. I hope to obtain a photo of them as well. Seriously! I count them twice when I say my prayers of gratitude. Yes, the area is hard, yet I know God’s angels are beside us!

Mom I received your packages! THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Your letter. mmm Thank you. :´] you are the best mom! Thank you for the vitamins, for the bag, for the thoughts, for all you do for me and for our family.

Daddy! Thank you for all that you do. For loving mom! Thank you for serving a mission. When I have to walk up a hill I remember the story of your companion working off the "odd thing" he ate and I smile. Haha! 

Karina, thank you for your love for your prayers, and for telling me everything just as if I was there. LOVE YOU!

Kaleb, what a wonderful young man you are becoming. Thank you for your message about looking up! I love you. Thank you, you are rockin’ awesome!

Kimberli! I am so glad you had the opportunity to see our family! What a blessing. I hope you enjoyed it for the both of us :P ;D <3 Mom said something about you coming back to Utah? Tell me more.

To all my friends, thank you for your examples in my life!!!!! Thank you for your support. Thank you for all that you do in your home wards, for all the blessings you bestow and do for others. God sees you. He knows you! Each of us are Children of God. The closer I am to the Savior the more I see this. Weaknesses are a part of this life. And yes, trials can make or break us, yet if we remember the true principle of Love and look to God in every thought, nothing is impossible with God.

Thank you mom for your updates about home! Thank you for sharing the challenging RM companion stories from others with me. I feel not so alone now. I try to remember that “what we are is more important than what we´ve been, and what we can become is more important than what we are!”  If you have time look up Phillipians 1:4-7.

This is the Lords Work!!!! 
Hermana Hansen


WEEK 17 -- "WE ARE CALLED TO SERVE"

WEEK 17 – “We Are Called to Serve”

Dearest Familia y Amigos!

WOW! It is sooo incredible! KARINA YOU ARE SUCH AN AMAZING GIRL!!! The people of Ecuador are so blessed to have you come! This work is so incredible. That mission conference yesterday was amazing!! I felt so blessed and yes, members make all the difference. If we don´t have a “missionary pro-active ward”, we won’t have as much success. We need members to have the spirit of love in our wards and to have a desire to share this love and light with others. When there is no love, then there is more room for offenses to happen and problems.

My companion and I had a baptism this week!!!!!!!!!!! Jessika Yaninia Marero Barrios!! She is one incredible girl! I am so grateful that she has made covenants with God. The reality of this whole baptismal process has really helped me see the value and importance of this church in every aspect of our lives. The water was freezing for Yaninia -- poor thing. Also, the level of it was below her knees because we forgot to assign someone to fill up the font. Oops! So she was freezing and then the drop for full immersion into the water was too much. She freaked out a little and her foot popped out and her head didn´t go fully under. W

When one of the priests finally did baptize her he literally had to hold her down because she would come popping up so easily. There was a moment after her first time down where she was literally frozen and she was breathing slowly and she hesitated for a long time. Her first look was one of, “I don´t know if I can do this?!" and then she had this total change come over her face, "Yes, I can do this!!" This gospel means so much to her already! 

On Sunday she received the gift of the Holy Ghost. Her smile was indescribable. She is already talking about doing baptisms for the dead for her mother who died a little while back.  She talks about missionary work and how she wants her friends to feel what she feels!! She has expressed a desire to serve a mission like us too. She really loves Hermana Calderòn and I.  I feel so blessed to know her. Generations are impacted because of her decision Friday to be baptized. This church is so amazing. (There was a few things that happened and she was sadly not baptized with the others in the stake center like we had planned, but it was a special night and we made it all about Yaninia.)

OH MY GOODNESS Mom you are an angel sent from heaven! I have always known this. Thank you for all your updates. About Jaely, Sarah Simmons, Jessica Davis, Rachel Andersen, Freddy, and so many more! Thank you so much!!!! For all you are doing. WOW what a life you have! How wonderful that you are doing so much for so many mom. Seriously you are SO AMAZING! Thank you for helping Jaely. I am so PROUD OF YOU  MY DEAR BELOVED FRIEND--Jays you really are amazing. Keep going I love you. Jessica D. and I hope you like living in Utah! And Freddy... I pray that my letter finds him. The words I wrote were for such a time as this..... please mother, put his name in the prayer roll... he is such a good soul. The Lord knows Him. He needs God’s light in his life and I hope he finds it.

This past week has been crazy busy. We had the wonderful opportunity and blessing to be part of two open houses in other mission areas of Uruguay. This is where people come and go through a "tour-like” setting where they come to understand more about the basic beliefs about our church. I have seen so many miracles.  I have seen people’s lives change and a sense of understanding about who they are and what they are looking for through this experience. I feel so blessed to be a part of this church. This church is so incredible. Every aspect changes and influences lives in positive and beautiful ways especially when done the way God intended for them to be done. 

I am so grateful for the opportunity my district and I had to clean the temple today. The lady was so wonderfully nice. We were able to walk into different rooms. There was even an opportunity to enter the celestial room. We were wearing white janitor outfits to do the cleaning. I felt a sense of peace there. He sent his angels round about me. I felt beautiful...I felt whole. I thought about how one of my companions has been beaten and battered by the world in her life and I was hoping she was feeling the comfort and peace of the temple. I felt like there were people in the room comforting us and taking away our burdens. I felt the pure love of Christ swell in my heart. It was an experience I will never forget.

I send my biggest smile and warmest hug! I LOVE YOU GUYS so much. I am so grateful for so many things. God be with you! We each are called to serve!!!

Sincerely,
Hermana Hansen


WEEK 16 -- "BECAUSE I HAVE BEEN GIVEN MUCH"

WEEK 16 – “Because I Have Been Given Much”

Hello Dearest Family & Friends!

I am so grateful for your letters and photos! LOVE YOU! SO many beautiful smiles and so many awesome moments shared, thank you so much!! It was so great to see my friends photos too!

This week has been very successful. My companion and I are working hard and for the most part we are on the same page. My Spanish grows daily and I feel like we are really connecting with the ward. There are over 700 members here in La Paz, Uruguay, but not all are attending church. Part of our mission this week (and probably for a long time afterwards) will be to reactivate members. We are doing what we can to help them remember their true testimonies of Jesus Christ, to strengthen these testimonies, and to help them see what a difference it makes to attend and partake of the Sacrament and to enjoy the blessings of gospel. 

My companion, Hermana Calderon, is a good teacher and she has many strengths, and we are learning to work out our differences. Lately she has been letting my take the lead in our teachings & lessons! We have finally accepted that we are really quite different people in our personalities, but we can still learn things from one another. 

This scripture came to my mind a lot this week, "I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren" (Luke 22:32)

Each day I feel that I understand the vision of this mission more and I understand what I am supposed to be doing. By chance we went to the temple this week with our investigators. The mission President gave a great lesson about the temple and the plan of salvation. It was so wonderful to step onto the temple grounds. I was able to leave the burdens of the world behind, there were no temptations, and I felt whole and eternal. It was a wonderful feeling.

Afterwards I had the opportunity to converse with President Armstrong. We talked about the problems I was having with my companion. He gave me a whole new perspective. I even felt self-centered part way through our discussion and asked for his forgiveness for my short-sided views. Afterwards I talked and shared some things with a wonderful Hermana here in Uruguay, Hermana Marz. She commented to me about me being stronger and that is why I was given someone who needs my strength. That was also a new way of thinking about it and working through it.

Yaninia is progressing!!! Her baptism is this Friday!! She is getting baptized in our “zone wide baptism”. This is where all the missionaries gather with those who are ready for baptism and we all do a service together!! This time we have 18 who are ready! It will be a night to remember. I can hardly wait to see them ALL IN WHITE!!! :D How wonderful! The Lord is in this work!  I love it here in Uruguay!

Sincerely,
Hermana Kaitlyn Hansen


WEEK 15 -- "PRECIOUS SAVIOR, DEAR REDEEMER"

WEEK 15 – “Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer”

Hello Dearest Family & Friends!

Wow what a week!! So much has happened and I hope I can adequately describe the events. Some tears have been shed and hugs exchanged as the announcement was made that our dear Mission President Armstrong will be leaving the mission due to the health of his wife. We found out after I wrote to you last week and now the news has really set in.

At first I was in denial and shock. I didn´t know how to take this, nor how it would affect my mission. My companion began to fuss and talk about how she couldn´t “do” her mission without President Armstrong. He really has worked with her a lot and I know that there are few concerning issues that have come to the surface since I have been her companion, but her actions helped me choose quickly which side I was going to be on with all of this --complaining or understanding. It was still painful to come to terms with the words, "The Lord’s will be done" and I have cried about it, but I know the Lord does things as they need to be done—in His time and in His way. 

The Mission President and his wife mean so much to me. I remember the first time I met them. They greeted us as we got off the plane and their looks of reassurance and welcome hearts to our wonderful mission were exactly what I needed. I knew I would be loved by them and that I could grow in this atmosphere of security and peace. During my first night in Uruguay I was getting ready for bed and had a feeling to go into the living room and there was Hermana Armstrong. I felt like I wanted to be near her.

I listened to what she was saying and the direction she was giving to the other elders for the following day. It was wonderful to just be in her presence. A scripture comes to mind as I look back on that experience, "Did not our hearts burn within us as [she] did sit and talk with us and share scriptures with us?" (Luke 24). I feel so honored to know them and to have experiences with them that I will hold and treasure. Our new Mission President is President Newsome. His trainer in the mission field was President Armstrong!! Cool, eh? They both served in Uruguay, Montevideo Mission. 

Things have really progressed here in La Paz, Uruguay. I am grateful for this. The Lord really helps us and directs us if we live worthy of having the Holy Ghost as our companion. We have one girl who is so ready for baptism and she will be baptized on the 22 of June! Her name is Yaninia (Sh-nine-ah). She is 17 and wow what a great girl she is! Our ward was really accepting of her and I know the Lord lead us to find her. We have also encountered four more potential baptisms by the end of June! May the Lord guide us and help us with these investigators. He “Knows” them—He really knows them! We only know them for but a small moment and we are here to serve them & help them find Him.

We have yet a new companion here with us in our little family of La Paz --lol. Hermana Phillips has yet a new oro to train!! Hermana Spradlin left for the other mission this last week and we have a wonderful new addition to our home, Hermana Hatch. NOW GET THIS—Ha! Ha! I honestly am amazed by this. While I went to school at BYU-Idaho she was my neighbor in Lamprecht Hall during spring semester!! Can you believe what a small world it is?! It is so cool! The more we have talked, the more I have realized how she really is a great person and someone I can see myself being friends with for a long time. 

Today (P-day) we have spent time getting to know one another in casual-awesome way! Karina, you know how we have laughed and got into the horoscope things, well :P haha she is born in January, so “naturally” we are getting along, both being Aquarius’s and all. :) Karina, I don´t know if you were praying for me to find a bosom friend, but I think this girl might be that “gold” I have been hoping for and waiting patiently for. How fun!! I love Hermana Janessa Hatch. We both admitted that the semester we met was not a good time in our lives and that we are grateful to get to know the more experienced and mission selves that we are today!! The Lord is so good to us!! :D I feel so blessed!

I have had a lot of time to ponder this week. We have a lot of investigators that are biblically astute! I have been trying to read the bible every day and to get more familiar with it. Any way, I felt prompted in a charla (lesson) the other day to share about the history of the Bible from the background I have studied. It was wonderful to find words come to my head--words I didn´t think I knew-- and explain how the whole history of the world was involved in preparing the people to receive the Book of Mormon as a companion and another testament of the Bible and Jesus Christ. I went on to explain how the religious world was ready for the Restoration.

This experience more deeply solidified my testimony and I have a greater love and understanding for the saints who lived during the times of the New Testament and for the sacrifice made by my ancestors—and all the pioneers and Joseph Smith. How incredible this gospel is. How great is our purpose. How wonderful the Glory of God is!

Samuel Merrill shared a scripture with me that I would like to share with you. Alma 26:16 "Therefore, let us glory, yea we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever. Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his longsuffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel." What a beautiful scripture this is.

Kaleb, you said something that I like a lot with your comments about kicking against the pricks—in Acts 9:5 where it mentions this, Saul was learning that his actions were harming himself more than anyone else. When we fight against what is right, we hurt ourselves the most. I too have learned that it is important to heed the promptings of your conscience and as it says in the quote at Mt. Vernon “conscience is a part of heaven to guide us". This is SO TRUE! I love this and thanks for sharing your wisdom little bro!! <3

I love this work. Hopefully the lessons will go well this week! And may God be with you. He is here beside me, my Precious Savior, Dear Redeemer (see Doctrine and Covenants 84:88). Love it!

Sincerely,
Hermana Hansen