Monday, March 9, 2015

Lost Camera :-( - Debit Card Problems - Message Is A Happy One/Cheered By Companion's Testimony - Dario Ordained & Wants To Serve Full-Time Mission, But Disappointed That He Must Wait 1 Year - Dario To Baptize Grasiela This Friday! - Answered Prayers Through Taylor's Companion's Father, Brother Hawk

Well, I had a tough week this week I have to admit. While I was in a bus on the way to a lesson, I noticed my camera was no longer there. I had likely been pick-pocketed, or it could have easily fallen out while walking. I immediately told myself not to panic and just get through the day. I got through the first part of the day and lunch just fine, but then I started thinking about the situation that I was in. I am here, without a camera, during perhaps one of the most incredible adventures of my life, with no way to get money to buy a new one, because my credit card was deactivated recently. My companion has also said that Argentina will not allow credit cards to be mailed here either, so I did feel like I was in quite the rut. Well, to be honest, I'm still kinda there. But, I am feeling a lot better than I did yesterday.
I kinda told myself that I would just let myself be sad during the day and during the lessons (something that I had never even thought of trying before...). Ánd so I did... for like half a lesson. Then i learned an important lesson. While on this mission, it is actually extremely difficult to be sad! The message we are carrying with us is such a happy one. I started getting cheered up, because of the testimonies my companion was sharing and realized, that I didn't need to be sad, that it would all be okay.
I thought of a quote that I had recently heard by President James E. Faust once said, "In the Gethsemanes of life that we all have, and often in my present calling (as apostle of the Lord) I have gone to my knees with a humble spirit to the only place I could for help. I often went in agonized spirit earnestly pleading with God to sustain me in the work I have come to appreciate more than life itself."

This is my hope that one day I will get to this point. I have to be honest, I am not yet there,but I'm trying every day,and I realized that the camera, is something so small and so unimportant, compared to the privilege I have to be a part of this work.

Well you all should know about the recent baptism that we had, of Dario Do Santos. He is an incredible member already. He recently received the priesthood and is very excited about the whole idea of this gospel. He reads the Book of Mormon like crazy and loves all of it! I was talking to him the other day and asked him what his thoughts were on the subject of a mission. (He is already 21) He said that he was planning on leaving in 3 months. Unfortunately, I had to brake him the news that he could not receive his call until after a year of waiting because he was so recently baptized. 
However, something that we have been doing is doing some visits with him so he can see how the mission is. One is his neighbor Grasiela (I don't know if I have already told you about her yet...) She is really excited about the gospel, and has told us that she has had a spiritual confirmation that Joseph Smith was a prophet and that this is the true church. She has asked Dario to baptize her.
She will be baptized this Friday, along with another child of a part member family. This is the most happy I think I have been as a missionary. Seeing the complete change in Dario, and his complete willingness to serve, and to be someone worthy to hold the Lord's priesthood and do something so sacred as to baptize, only 2 weeks after his own baptism, makes me so happy.

I love this work, and love you all!
Elder Graves
Argentina Posadas Mission
This is Taylor's Dad: 
Kirsten and I were somewhat distraught over Taylor's lost camera.  This is such an important time in his life - worthy of many photographs to help him remember these sacred experiences and friends.  It would seem that a camera is easily replaceable so...not a big deal, but in this case unfortunately the bank canceled Taylor's debit card (for security reasons) and sent him a replacement card to our home.  The problem is that we have no way to send him the new card - though we have tried unsuccessfully for a few weeks now - meaning that we have no way to send him money.  This is a problem when there are additional unexpected costs (like the need to replace his lost camera).  

Kirsten got creative today and was able to get in touch with Elder Hawk's (Taylor's companion) Father.  She explained our inability to get money to Taylor for a replacement camera and (never having met him) asked him if he would be willing to deposit some money into his son's bank account and then ask him to give the money to Taylor.  Brother Hawk didn't even hesitate and so graciously helped us get the money for a camera to Taylor.  We feel a sincere gratitude for Brother Hawk and his willingness to help us help our son. 

Taylor has a great Mom.  Though separated by more than 6,000 miles, she found a way to take care of Taylor's unique needs on the same day that she found out about the problem.  Taylor is blessed to have such a loving mother.  Nothing will get between this mother and the love she has for her son - not even 6,000 miles.  She is the best.  I am so grateful that she was able to take care of this while I was unavailable at work.

Since Taylor was unable to send pictures due to his missing camera, we had to get creative again for pictures to include in the blog and we "borrowed" some pictures from Elder Hawk's blog from their recent zone activity to the ruins.  Thanks again Elder Hawk!  You have come through for us and for Taylor (Elder Graves :-) once again!  

Here are the pictures borrowed from Elder Hawk's blog:



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

1 comment:

  1. Thank you, Bryce, for that sweet extra message. I love you.