Monday, February 23, 2015


Dear Everyone,

This week was kind of different.  Like it rained.  A LOT.  4 out of the last 7 days were just a strong, hard rain.  In our area, it is really really bad, because the drainage systems here are really clogged and just neglected, so a lot of people had about 3 or 4 feet of water in their homes.  Brings a new meaning to having your house flooded.

On Saturday, we were able to go to the temple with some of the youth from our ward.  We went to the Family History Center last Sunday, they found some names and completed their books (My Family), and we received approval from the mission president to be able to take a group to the temple to do baptisms and start this process of saving souls.

Also on Saturday, we had the privilege to go to a training for the ward councils of this area.  We started to walk to take a bus and then it started to RAIN, like so crazy.  Luckily, we were close to our house so we grabbed umbrellas and coats, and I ended up giving mine to some girls from the ward, and we got SO wet.  When we finally got to the stake center, we walked in and naturally the first person we see is an area seventy, and we are standing there like drowned rats.  We were like...there goes our pride!;) We walked into the bathroom to dry off and we found the other sisters in there as well, and it was fun to just laugh it off.  It brought to my mind the quote, "life isn't about waiting for the storm to pass, it is about learning to dance in the rain."  That quote comes to my mind a lot:)

The training was amazing, even though we lost the signal.  The area seventy, Elder Krasnoselsky spoke to us about the importance of ministering to the people according to their needs.  That it not be something mechanical, something that we are obligated to do, but something that we do because of our love for our Savior and our gratitude for what he did for us.  Really, that is what our focus is now,  to minister in such a way that we gain the trust of the people and they can see and feel the love of our Savior through us as members and our service.  Really, this is for everyone, in every calling, in every ward.  Minister to the people for whom you are responsible, and you will be able to feel that your perspective is changing and that you are becoming a true disciple of Jesus Christ. (Moroni 7)

Something else that we laughed about was afterwards, there weren't any buses because of the rain, so we had to walk back.  On the way, we received a call from some girls from the ward, who were stuck on the wrong side of a huge flood zone thing.  They needed to get home, but weren't able to cross the river, because it was deep and fast, really, it surprised me how deep it was.  So, at 9:20, we walked to where they were, and then we had to walk to the other end of our area with them to enter the street where they lived on the other side, and all in the about 10, we finally got to their house, dropped them off, and booked it home, until we  were walking in the water and we saw a flipping snake in the water with us...we almost died.  Seriously, I don't think I have been so startled for a LONG time.  The SWAT team...hermana missionary style.  Kind of frightening.

Anyway, the moral of the story is, even when you know that there are creepy things swimming in the water with you...don't be afraid, pray really hard and walk really, really fast:)

I hope you all have a good week!:)

Hermana Farish

Youth at the temple

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Fat Joke of the Century

Hola Familia,

Judging by everyone's emails, this week was kind of crazy for you guys!  I am so glad that everyone is doing fine and that Emily received her call! That is so awesome!

Now, I am pretty secure here in Paraguay with my physical appearance and all that, but today we had a zone activity with something that we weren't sure if we should be ashamed of,  or if we should just go with it, so we just went with it.  We had a BOUNCY HOUSE at a zone activity.  Eesh. We had a blast!  At one point, there were three North American sisters (all about my size) trying to climb to the top of the slide through the slide.  Well, we got up there and all of a sudden, the top part started to cave in.  We were like...haha, it is just because the other hermana is coming!  So we sat there at the top of this giant bouncy slide and all of the sudden, the top part started to collapse all of the way, and the slide TIPPED OVER...just because we were sitting at the top.  We totally fell off the side when it tipped over. we were embarrassed a little bit...but, at least there were three of us so we could all take a little bit of the blame:) But still, we tipped over a huge bouncy slide, who can say fat joke?

Another experience that made me giggle was on Thursday, when we went to lunch, turns out there was a huge party going on, and one of the moms who came brought her two twin boys, her ONLY children, with a nanny for each one.  I just giggled inside as the mom talked about how hard her life was, and I was thinking, "You think your life is hard?  You should see my Aunt Laurie.  She goes DEER HUNTING with twins and 3 other small children. So there:)"  Laurie, you are awesome!  As well as all of my aunts, my grandma, and my mom!  you are all such wonderful examples of dedicating your life to your family.  It makes such a difference!

I have been thinking a lot about the whole love and charity thing.  I was reading in Moroni 7, and it says that the true disciples of Christ are the ones who have the true charity.  So, you need to tell mom that she can't kill you, because she needs to have charity;) (I sent her a singing Valentine in front of A LOT of people), and also, it says in this verse how if we want charity, we need to ask for it, because for most, it doesn't come naturally.

In preach my gospel it talks about how the Atonement was done because of the love of Jesus Christ, not only for His Father but for us as well.  Everything that we do as servants of Christ is because of our love for Christ and our appreciation of what He did for us.  If we don't feel the need to do it, it is because we don't have charity.

As far as my contacting, I am still struggling.  I contact, but it isn't nearly enough. We have so much to do that a lot of the times I use the excuse we don't have time or we need to go.  But the other day I felt an impression to talk to a teen girl, and in talking to her we found a less active and an old investigator.  So, I need to contact more, and not "quench the Spirit", because that is what I have been doing.  Just relax and feel the Spirit and have my priorities straight.

As far as the work goes, we had zone conference on Tuesday, and we were there all day because we had interviews with President McMullin.  They went really well, and we had some interesting conversations.  The focus was on goals and on the desire to make goals, work to meet them, and all that.  We went to the AP and he sat us down and said, "When you begin to have relationships with someone who could be your future spouse, at what point in your relationship will you set goals?"  We were like....WHAT?  ELDER.  Number 1: We don't say or talk about the "M" word in the mission. Number 2:  Why on earth would we tell you? Yeah, that was slightly awkward at first.

Something that I really liked from this conference was that we talked about desire. They gave us a talk by Dallin H. Oaks, which talked about how our desires determine our priorities, our priorities determine our choices, and our choices determine our actions, which determine our salvation.  Really, if we want something badly enough, we will be able to accomplish it, with the help of the Lord, and lots and lots of work.  I love being a missionary, and even though sometimes it really just stinks, I know that nothing will happen that I will not be able to overcome, because we all have a loving Heavenly Father who knows us and our weaknesses perfectly.

Also, something that I just realized is that this week makes one year since I opened my call!  The time is going by so flipping fast.  Random my plaque in the church?  How weird...19 years of my life i looked at all of the missionary plaques...weird.  Everyone is just growing up so incredibly fast and moving on and making choices.  Loca es.

I love you all and I hope you have a good week!

Hermana Farish

Monday, February 9, 2015

As If For Years

Well flip. 

This week was one of those weeks that makes all of the other weeks walking in the sun worth it.  We had lots of fun little miracles, and we were able to see the Lord's hand in His work. 

Mostly, I want to focus on something that I read today that really just went to my very center.  I was reading an article in the Ensign about our journey through life and how a lot of the times, we are just waiting for things to change so that we can be happier.  We say, okay, I am only going to be in this ward for so long, so I am not going to accept a calling, or for me, I am only going to be in this area for so long, so...just work with the hope that I get transferred.


What the author said really made me think.  How different would our lives be if we lived and prayed and worked in every situation as if we were going to be there for years?  As if nothing was going to change and only we had to do the best we could with what we had in the moment?  I was like...oof.  Something that I really need to change is my perspective.  We are where we are because the Lord knows that we are going to be able to learn something from the experience. The missionaries come and go, but really our purpose is to improve SOMETHING in the area, whether it be the ward, baptisms, or individuals, and we need to do it with the idea that we are going to be there for always. I am not explaining myself really well, but basically we have to make the most of every moment that we have so that we can do all that the Lord would have us do.

I love you all so much, and I hope that you can always try to think in the eternal perspective, that everything you do can help or hinder your progress.

¡Les quiero! (I love you!)

Hermana Farish

Monday, February 2, 2015

Miracle of Miracles

Dear Family,

We have had a good week here in Paraguay.  Really, it is so awesome to see the Lord's hand in these things.

First off, Hilda.  Hilda is 67 years old, and has diabetes. Something is really, really wrong with her foot, and it is hard to walk.  The sisters who were here before found here, and Hilda always used her foot as an excuse to not go to church.  But now, she is so ready to be baptized.  Last week on Sunday, we were walking to bring people to church, and we had the feeling that we needed to go to get a less active (the bishop's wife), so we went, were rejected, and when we were walking back to go to church, we found Hilda walking with her grandson to go to church with us.  We wouldn't have found her if we hadn't gone to find the less active, so even when you have impressions, and you don't know why, you need to follow them , becaue who knows, just like Elder Hughes said.

On Monday Hilda told us that she had woken up on Sunday morning with so much pain in her foot, and wasn't feeling well.  She said that she prayed to the Lord that she would be healed so that she could walk to church.  She told us that the pain just left.  WWHHHAAATTTTT???  We were so incredibly happy.  The second miracle with her was this Sunday.  We tried to call her, and she didn't answer, and we didn't have time to walk and find her, so we went to church really depressed.  But at 9 am, she walked right on up with her grandson!  She told us that she woke up a little late and began to walk, even with the pain in her foot.  Then her grandson found a 2 thousand guarani bill so that they were able to take a bus and not walk so much.  This really showed me that we have to act on our faith, which sometimes is really hard, but when we do, our loving Heavenly Father will help us to bear our burdens and will bless us beyond what we can imagine.

We had a wonderful gift this Sunday.  The Sisters Linda Burton (President de RS) and Neill Marriot (2nd counselor YW) came to Paraguay!  We got a colectivo for the ward and we all went to the chapel next to the temple to listen to them. We were like 4 rows away from these wonderful women.  It was such a wonderful experience.  They really are called to bring relief to those who need it, and I want to be as loving and as humble as they are when I grow up. 

They truly have charity for every single person.

Seriously.  It was so amazing.  From Hna. Marriot, she told us 5 things that we need to do to keep our spirits from diminishing and protect ourselves from temptation:
1-Pray always:when we don't have the Spirit in our hearts, STOP what you are doing AND PRAY.
2-Read and STUDY the scriptures.  Pray for inspiration and revelation.
3-Take the Sacrament every Sunday.  When we don't take the sacrament, we lose power from God.
4-SERVE others with the love of Christ. Mosiah 2:17
5-Go to the temple often.
From Hna. Burton, she asked the question, "What kind of woman am I?  Am I prepared to meet Jesus Christ beyond the veil?"  That was SO deep.  It was like...oh flip.

The heat wasn't all that bad this week.  It is getting easier, but wow, I am getting some really, really, really weird tan lines.  LIke BAD.  We have air conditioning in the room where we sleep, and it is such a downer when we go outside the room the next morning and the heat just melts all of the protective ice that you built up during the night.  My companion is fine, we have a pretty good relationship now, and I am really trying hard to develop charity.  The conference of the Relief society last night really showed me what an incredibly powerful tool it can be in the power of conversion.
Oddly enough, my favorite thing to eat here is a salad made up of salt, cucumbers, lime, and tomatoes.  It is SO good and fresh and healthy.  There is this thing called milanesa that is like fried chicken but it is slices of beef.  It is so, so good with rice and this salad.  Something that I thought would never happen is that something really good with rice is mayonnaise, with corn and peas.  COLD.  Weird, but true.  Almost everything is better with mayo.

Anyways, that conference was such a wonderful blessing, it was like the pep talk of the century.  And I have 6 months in the mission..que en el mundo.  Time is going by WAY too fast.
I love you all, and I hope you have a wonderful week!  Stay happy and know that you have a Heavenly Father and an older brother who are at your side at all times!

Love, love, love,
Hermana Farish