Monday, September 28, 2015

Bats in the Belfry (and other such nonsense)

I'm not really sure what a belfry is...but we have bats living above our pension. Who knew bats could be so noisy? I was able to tolerate them for a while, but my patience reached a limit when I came home one day to find little gifts all over my bed. Gross!

We went to visit Maribel and family this week. Her little brother is six months old. I don't think he likes me very much. I walked in, smiled my friendliest smile, and said, "¡Hóla!" - which of course prompted him to immediately burst into tears.

How many missionaries does it take to change a lightbulb?
Well, we had a lot of fun this week. I guess we had to relieve a lot of stress. But I promise we didn't spend all of our time fooling around. We had some very spiritual experiences. Last night, for example, we went to visit one of our investigators, a kind lady who always gives us cookies. She had one of her neighbors over; he was watching the Sunday night soccer game. But he was very friendly and willing to turn the volume down and participate in our discussion. We taught about the Restoration of the Gospel to Joseph Smith and explained the function of the prophet in the true Church of Jesus Christ. He seemed very interested. My companion had the inspiration, at one point during the lesson, to ask him (somewhat out-of-the-blue), "Do you believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God?"

Without hesitating, he said yes.

I know this, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, is the one true church of God on the earth. He directs it through his prophet, Thomas S. Monson. I am so excited for the opportunity we have this weekend to hear the word of God through the mouth of His prophets and apostles in the General Conference of the Church. I invite all of you to watch it!

Hermana Watts

Monday, September 21, 2015

As a Little Child

Said the Savior:

"And again I say unto you, ye must repent, and be baptized in my name, and become as a little child, or ye can in nowise inherit the kingdom of God."

This week we had the great honor of witnessing the baptism of Maribel Sanabria, who with childlike submission braved her fears and entered the waters of baptism to make sacred covenants with her Father in Heaven. What a privilege to take part in such a momentous event! This truly is the way, the only way to inherit eternal life.


Hermana Watts

My companion cooking lomo saltado (or trying to burn down the pension, not sure which)

Getting ready for the baptism!
Pre-baptism: We had to take the photos inside because it was raining
Nine year old Maribel Sanabria
Maribel with her sisters
Hermana Watts, Hermana Castillo, y Maribel
Maribel's mother and siblings

Maribel with Hermano Segovia, who baptized her
What's a baptism without cake?
Post-baptism - The rain cleared up and the sun came out just in time to take some more pictures!

Our P-day trip to the River Piraí with Maribel and her sisters and cousins.  This river has been the site of many baptisms in the past.

Frutilla! (somewhere between raspberries and strawberries - found on our walk to the Piraí)

Zona Iguazu!!

Monday, September 14, 2015

Under Attack

​What a week! Some days it just feels like everyone just wants to attack the Church. We talked with several well-meaning people who seemed to challenge every basic belief that brought me here to Argentina.

First, the Catholic father of Maribel, the little girl who will soon be baptized: "I like your church and have always gotten along great with the missionaries, but why do you have to be so selfish and say that you are the only true church?"

Second, Flavia, a Jehovah's Witness whose husband recently got baptized in the Church: "I would invite you to study and ponder Galatians 1:8-9, which reads that 'If any man preach any other gospel unto you than that ye have received, let him be accursed.'"

Finally, from María Nelly, one of our best investigators: "Why can't there be missionaries who just come and talk about God, without trying to convince me that their church is right? Churches are all just big political groups."


I know that there are a lot of churches which claim to be true. I understand how easy it is to believe that all of them, or none of them, are good and right. But I know that there is one church that is organized and directed by the Savior Himself. Only through the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints can we receive the ordinances necessary for salvation and exaltation. I know because I asked God in prayer if it was true, and He answered my prayer through the power of the Holy Ghost.

My invitation to all is that you might ask God sincerely if the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only true church upon the earth. I promise He will answer your prayers, as He did mine.

Hermana Watts

Pretty sure this is what paradise looks like.

Monday, September 7, 2015

Called to Serve!

A few days ago we got a phone call at about 10:00 at night from a less active member we visit once in a while. She explained that her mother had just gotten out of an operation and was in the hospital and she needed someone to stay the night with her mom. Well, we're missionaries, and we have certain rules, such as we cannot leave the pension past 9:30. But we promised to enlist the help of the members. We called around and finally got ahold of a sister who was willing to go stay the night with the abuelita. We went to bed content and satisfied with having helped a sister in need.

But our work didn't end there. Early the next morning, we received a text from the sister asking if we could come to her house later that morning. Of course we were more than willing. As soon as we finished personal studies, we went to see how we could help. We found that the mother had been released and was doing well, although she cannot move much until she fully recovers. But what the sister really needed was..."Oh, hermanas, could you please just clean my bathroom for me?"

Not exactly the kind of service we expected to do on the mission, haha. But we set to work cheerfully and cleaned the bathroom, washed the dishes, swept the floor...Mom, you should be so proud of me!

I am so grateful for the opportunity to serve my sisters and brothers here in Argentina and Paraguay. As King Benjamin wisely says, "When ye are in the service of your fellow men, ye are only in the service of your God."

Hermana Watts

P-day!  We took a trip to the costanera.  That's Paraguay in the background.

Look at this crazy bug I found!!  (pen for size reference)