Thursday, January 24, 2013

Hola Everyone...

Hola Everyone!

I hope this week has been very exciting for everyone!  We´ve had a another usual week with teaching, contacting, meetings, and sleeping.  However, I feel that the work is progressing in the land of Gurabo!

Let´s see.  First off, on Sunday we had Stake Conference with a transmission from Salt Lake.  Sister Wixom, Pres. Beck, and Elder Nelson were the speakers.  Sister Wixom spoke of the importance of being examples to children and as well the importance of raising children.  Pres. Beck talked about the importance of tithing and shared different experiences of his mission.  The crazy thing is that he talked completely in Spanish.  Who knew, right?  I was very surprised to see him just whip out the Spanish language.  Elder Nelson spoke of many different things, but finally tied into all into the faith of the members of the Caribbean.  He spoke of the ancestors of the isles of the sea and the mandate every member has to share the gospel to the house of Israel.  It was a very good talk!  I think we can all follow his counsel and share the gospel.  We don´t always have to share with words, but we can just be an example to our neighbors and friends.  I know that our same actions and beliefs is what converts the hearts of men!

We´ve continued to teach our investigators and are finding some progress with them.  Ruben is continuing to read and pray, but he hasn´t gone to church yet which is a big problem.  Satan knows that this man will be great member of the church and so he´s doing all he can to stop him.  Every time he is planning to go the church, his boss calls and tells him he needs to work Sunday morning.  So luckily, Ruben wants to progress and learn more about God, so he´s looking for a new job.  However, he hasn´t had any success yet, but we´re praying he´ll find a new job.

As for Josephina, she´s no longer in the branch.  Her house is right on the division line, and so she has to attend Los Jardines.  However, I´ve seen her at Stake Conference and the other Elders tell me she´s just a busy as ever.  She is still smoke free and progressing well!  We all consider her active again, because she´s giving loads of references and wants to share her testimony with everyone.  Are we all like her, and want to share our gift of testimony with everyone?  How easy is it to just quickly share our testimony with someone?

We´ve also starting teaching a couple new people as well!  I don´t have much to say about them yet, but I´ll let you know when things pick up again!  But, I´m confident that there´ll be some more baptisms in the next few months.  However, I´m not sure I´ll be here to see them!  But, I really hope I can make a difference in these peoples lives.

This past week I´ve been studying alot of the Conference talks in the Liahona.  I really like the talk of Elder Cook about ¨Can ye feel so now.¨  He shared Alma 5:26.  It says something about those who have felt the song redeeming love and a change of heart; and if so, can you feel that now?  I thought about the times where I´ve felt the feeling of conversion in my life.  The powerful testimonies, conferences, devotionals, camps, etc.  It seems we can all feel the song of redeeming love during the powerful moments, but why don´t we always feel it during the quiet, slow moments of life?  I´ve thought alot about how we can constantly sing the song in our everyday lives.  I firmly believe that the base of all gospel, testimony, and progression stems from our communication with God.  One of the biggest things I focus on with investigators is our prayers to our Father in Heaven.  Do we constantly have personal prayer with God?  Do we really speak to or at our Heavenly Father?  Do we treat our conversations with God the same as our conversations with girlfriends, boyfriends, or friends?  I testify when we really strive to speak with and not at our Heavenly Father is when we´ll really start seeing a difference in our lives.  The communication with our Father in Heaven should be a cherished relationship that we all should not take for granted, so I encourage you all to evaluate your prayers and strive to build a stronger relationship with our God and Father.  I know he is always listening, we just have to speak!  En el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen.

Have an excellent week!

Elder Jensen

Happy Wednesday...

Hola everyone!

This past week has been a really good week for my companion and I.  We're working hard in the area and starting to find some new investigators out of the wood work, so it seems like we're moving forward again!

This week we met with a referral named Ruben.  He goes by Ruddy, so if I say one or the other it's the same guy.  But anyways, he met this lady in the branch who is a really strong member.  Well they turned into "really good" friends and he became very interested in her beliefs and style of life.  She started explaining our beliefs and a little bit about our religion.  He became more interested and wanted to learn more about our church.  So as Elder Nelson has said, "Ask the missionaries."  So that's exactly what went down!  He is always working and lives super far way, but we finally have had 2 really good lessons with him.  He doesn't know very much about religion, but he is very open and wants to believe in the gospel.  I'm pretty sure he'll progress really well!  Referrals from members are always super good!!  Everyone should help the missionaries with referrals, because that's where the miracles occur!

We also received a referral of a young 16 year old girl named Carolina.  She lives next to Estefany, one of the girls baptized a few months ago.  She seems interested and has the whole family of Bienvenido helping her out.  So with that kind of support, she'll have lots of testimonies to lean on until she can find out for herself.

We've also starting meeting with some other families and young adults.  We are also trying to put a new activity in place that will help the branch be more motivated to share the gospel and build up the kingdom here in Gurabo.  I guess we'll see how it goes in the next few weeks!

As for what Mom can say in church, I'll think this next week and let you know.  But encourage the ward to give referrals to the missionaries.  That's where we find success, and alot of people just need to be invited to listen!  So give referrals!!

Thanks for all the support and prayers!  The church is true and missionary work rocks!!  

Elder Jensen

Sunday, January 13, 2013


Hola Everyone!

I hope everyone had a fantastic week and that everything is going great!  Things here in the DR have been rather slow again this past week, but I feel like big changes are on the horizon!

The family of Bienvenido is progressing slowly, but a little at a time.  The mother, Elba, is starting to sneak in and participate in prayers, and she seems relatively happy to see us show up at their house.  We decided as missionaries and branch leaders that the best thing to help her grow is by being patient and supporting her family.  Of course we're always praying for her, and it seems that the lord is hearing our prayers!  I don't think I'll see it happen, but I hope and believe that one day that family will be sealed in the temple for time and all eternity.  But I do enjoy seeing the small little changes in the family.  You can definitely feel a different spirit there now!

Things continue to push forward in Gurabo.  Next week, we'll have our first meeting in the new building the church is renting.  I hope this will increase attendance and help some less-actives come back to church.  Guess we'll see!  I hope that within no time, this branch will be a force for good in Gurabo with activities, leadership, attendance, and so forth.

So yesterday we had a Zone Meeting and President Douglas and his wife showed up.  Sister Douglas did something quite ingenious, but at the same time we all felt terrible.  She asked us to stand up and then keep standing if we had got up everyday at 6:30 am last month.  All but 4 missionaries sat down.  Then she said to stand back up if we only missed one day, then two, etc.  Slowly, missionaries started standing up, but the majority was sitting down.  I hate to admit it, but I was one of them sitting.  It's weird how the majority of us are up around 6:30, but not at 6:30.  How many of us in our lives live the gospel this way?  Do we sort of study the scriptures, say our prayers, participate in church, or live our gospel standards?  It's one thing to be up around 6:30 in our gospel living, but its entirely different to be up by 6:30.  I testify that we will feel happier and find more peace in our lives if we strive to "wake up" on time!  We will feel God's love for us and a sense of security that God is pleased with our efforts.  As we do this, I know also that our testimonies will be strengthened and we will come to know that this gospel is true!  I challenge each of you to get up on time and find out the few minutes you've been missing.  En el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen.

Elder Jensen

Happy 2013...

Hola Everyone!

Happy New Year!  With the new year comes new changes!  This past week had really only one major change for me.  Yep, a new companion.

My new companion's name is Elder Nicolas for the Dominican Republic.  He has 6 months in the mission, so relatively new still.  I'm his first American Companion, so it's been interesting.  He speaks really fast, 100% Dominican, and so I know I'm going to learn spanish (Dominican) really, really fast this transfer!  He's essentially an only child and has been a member his whole life.  He seems really cool and has a lot of energy to serve and help build the kingdom in Gurabo!  I'm excited to see what is in store this transfer!

So missionary work wise, not a whole lot to say!  For one, this past week was the new year and I felt like this country was a different place.  Tons of people, beer, music, beer, fireworks, beer; did I mention beer?  This was not a good week to talk about religion with people because one, they couldn't remember the next day.  Or two, they were partying and didn't want to!  So I really don't have a lot of things to say!  It was honestly just one big party week here in the DR!  Hopefully better success this next week!

Things are goind good and I'm excited to see what happens this year!  Thanks for all your love and support and have an excellent week!

Elder Jensen