Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Delayed P-day - Thanks E. Smith! - New Chilean Companion E. Venegas - Spiritual Experiences - Goal=Faith in every moment - Guided Prospecting - Strong Spirit - Testimony of the work...Not always a baptism, but always a stepping stone - An Excited Investigator Was Lost but then found again through faith and a miracle

Well, finally we have the chance to write! We had to postpone our P-day to Tuesday because there was a holiday here on Monday and nothing is open when there are holidays, and then when we came to the computer place, the power in the WHOLE CITY went out... so yeah we are here writing two days late :) Better late than never write_?
So first I want to say a big thanks to Elder Smith, he was really fun and really helped me learn more Spanish. Even though we both speak English, we never had an English conversation, and for that, our ability to speak has really increased. Even though he had only been here for 6 weeks like me, they called him to go serve in Paraguay for this transfer.
​Now I have a new companion again! His name is Elder Venegas and he is from Chile! He lives in the area that 3 of my really good friends are serving! (Morgan Vorwaller, Brooke Squires and Jessica Mccubbins). My language ability has gotten to the point that with almost anybody I can understand pretty much 100 percent of what they say and we can have any type of conversation. But... with my new companion... well lets just say he talks reeeeeeaaally fast. Haha it is so awesome how fast he can talk and it is really helping me learn how to listen more closely for words. 
He and I have already had some very spiritual experiences and I know it all has to do with the immense faith that he has. My goal this transfer (6weeks) is to learn how to truly show my faith in every moment. Not just have faith, but show it through action.
We were in an apartment complex clapping doors with little success. I finally turned to my companion, and told him that we better start heading to lunch. Without responding, he turned and clapped 1 more door. I thought, okay one more and then FOOD. When the door opened she looked surprised and told us that she had been waiting for us. We didn't understand because we just touched a random door. She said that her friend had told her about us and that she had been waiting for us. We were in shock. She accepted us and told us that the Herman Joseli had told her that we would come by, after the lunch we were just about to have. We were amazed that the spirit had really guided to her house. Because of that experience she was mentally prepared to accept us and the lesson was that much more spiritual because of that. In the end, we decided to have her join us for the lunch with the Hermana Joseli and we continued talking about the gospel. 
In the end, she expressed a few doubts about what we had said to her, but the response to her doubts didn't come from us, they came from the Hermana Joseli. She said to her, "What more proof do you need, than that God sent these men to your home?"  In that moment the spirit was SO strong. I felt it, my companion felt it, and I know the investigator felt it as she began to cry.
These experiences I share with all of you, are so special to me. I love them and know that I am blessed with these experiences only by my faith of serving this mission. I also have to tell you, that we don't baptize every person with who we have a spiritual experience. Although they feel the spirit, does not mean that they will chose to follow Christ and be baptized. What it means to me, is that we were just a stepping stone for them in their journey towards Christ.
One more experience. One day we were waiting for a bus and a girl of about 20 years came up to me and asked me where I was from. I told her the states, and she was in shock! I told her that we were missionaries and that we are sharing the story of Christ and his birth as it is the Christmas season and that we wanted to visit with her family one day in the week. She was very animated and wanted to have us with her family. Right when she was giving us her direction our bus arrived and we had to go, so she didn't get to write her whole direction. When we went to search her house we realized she didnt put her house number and only her street name. I was devistated. I told my companion that I didnt know what we should do but he just turned to me and said, “Elder Graves, have faith, we will find her.” The first door we clapped at was hers.  I know the spirit guides the missionaries. I have seen it work in me and in my companionship.

I love you all and love this gospel

Elder Graves
Argentina Posadas Mission


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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