Monday, September 8, 2014

Great food = 10 lbs - New Companion from Peru - No more English - Ran out of his shoes - Have Faith - English Class - Trip to the Beach! - Testimony

Well you are going to have to squint and tilt your head a little to recognize me, but I have officially gained a good 10 pounds already! Wholly smokes...(pretty sure thats not right)...but yeah it is so hard not to gain weight here! The food is just sooooo amazing! Haha but I have officially put myself on a diet (after eating a lot today at a huge buffet!) Also I am going to be running everyday now!!! It is amazing how much you can miss a crazy thing like running.

Well I just found out that I will be staying in my area, but I am going to be getting a new companion. He is from Peru, and knows zero english!! Also, I will be the only one in my whole district who isnt new to the area, and also I am the only one in the whole district who is not from south america! So I literally will not be speaking English at all NO MATTER WHAT for at least 6 weeks!!! I am super excited for this challenge. A little nervous, but excited. One thing that is sad, is that my old companion, Elder Collins and I, have done a lot of work in Lopez, and he is really sad to be leaving. We have lots of baptisms that are in the process of happining and he is sad not to get to be a part of them. However, he did help me so much, helped me learn to work, helped me a TON with the language, and helped me learn how to have fun. Here is a picture of my awesome trainer/companion/friend.

We worked SO HARD that his shoes just fell right off his feet!

This week we had something really sad happen. A woman named Lidia, was doing really well listening to the lessons and understanding. One day, we arrived to a lesson and she told us with tears in her eyes that she understood our message, but couldn't continue listening too us. My heart broke. She had felt the spirit several times and I know it. It is heartbreaking to have this happen, but I am NOT giving up on her. Like I said in my last letter, I think I was the 6th out of the 7 missionaries.

This is us teaching the English class in the chapel, we didnt have a big turn out this time, but they LOVE posing for pictures!

It was so fun! We had a zone meeting and they decided to take us to the beach for volleyball! It was soooo fun! I even got to run on the beach with one of the other elders. (I´m not as graceful as those people in the movies)
PS I´m wearing a MESSI jersey! (yeah I know they lost :,(  )

This mission experience has already changed me in so many ways. My testimony truly has grown. My reliance on the lord has grown exponentially. My ability to be positive during difficult times has been increased.

It is amazing what happens to you when you say something over and over again. I say the words, I know Joseph Smith was a prophet, I know Jesus Christ lives, and I know that that this church has the full truth, every day with out fail. You start to realize how true the words you are saying are. Whether you want to believe it or not, you begin to realize, that this gospel is 100 percent true. My testimony to you today is, that everything in the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is true.
I love this gospel and thank God daily for allowing me to have a knowledge of the truthfulness of it.

Love you all.

Elder Graves

Write to Elder Graves in 1 of 4 ways:

1. E-mail
2. Send mail through
They will print and mail it for you at no cost (without a stamp).  This is a free service. Instructions:
Select the "Argentina Posadas Mission"

3. Send letters through the Church Pouch Mail Only postcards or one-page correspondences (no envelopes).

Fold the letter in thirds, secure the long side with tape about one inch in from each end. Do not seal the ends. Stamp and address the blank side as you would an envelope. Use the following mailing address:
Elder Taylor Graves
Argentina Posadas Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, UT

4. Physical Mailing Address.
Due to exorbitant costs incurred in the country of Argentina by the church, He can not receive packages :-( - not even a bubble envelope. Please refrain from sending anything other than an envelope/letter - anything else will likely be returned to sender.

Elder Taylor Graves
Córdoba 1243
Posadas, Misiones 3300
Casilla 12

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