Monday, October 27, 2014

La cartita para la semana‏

So Ill just say that the mision argentina resistencia has one more reason that makes it THE BEST! Bonus skype for Argentine mothers day was AWESOME! Love you momma :) Feliz dia de la madre. 

I have been studying so much in patience. At times I feel self consience as I speak with the people-- they are timid and arent used to being asked questions. So I am learning so much patience with myself and with the people that I love so much. 

We worked our tails off this week. Flying around on our little bikes. They dont make bikes for big people here. Since we bought the used bike, I have had to take it back to the shop every single day to get something fixed that I have broken... But we are having a great time playing in dust and bringing souls unto Christ. 

Interviews were amazing. Really just what I needed for a great battery charge to keep going. It was so good to talk, to express myself and to be taught. It was also so good to see Elder Fiabane, Elder Carrera and Elder Israelsen. I have been blessed with such amazing relationships here in the mission.

We have been working hard with investigators and less active people. It is such a priviledge to reach out to these people that really just need some love and understanding. Some nurturing in the gospel. We FILLED the church this week. We had 46 people there. Just a joy for me to see all of those members and people that are coming to know that which we love.

I love this work so much and am so blessed to be a part of it. 

Still havent seen any rain here. Honestly Im kind of excited to see what this place turns into with a little bit of water.. RAIN BOOTS!!

Elder Johnson

Taking a half shower (these save your life)
Sleeping in the colectivo after divisions
Probably going to baptize here :)

Tuesday, October 21, 2014


A short one. Sorry about that. Im writing today because the man that works in theschoolthat lets us usehis computers had tokick us out and leaveyesterday. And my space bar doesnt really work...

What an amazing week. Sunday Elder Mendozaand I were walking and working so hard.Then we turnedtoeachother and saidthat we bothwantedto workhard, butthatour legs just werent cooperating.I love that somuch. Working until Ive really given itall. Itsan amazing feeling to know that our efforts goto help the salvation of children of God.

I hada unique experiencein the church today. The reunions follow being mostly in the dialect toba, which hasnothing to dowith Castellano... At first I was a little discouraged. But then Irealizedthat Iwasfeelingthe spirit sostrongly. I know thatthis is the true church and the onlychurch of our SaviorJesus Christ here on earth. I feelthe same in our tiny little church without lights, without a piano and singing thesame 3 hymnsthat the membersremember than I do at home in Phoenix, Idaho, Mercedes, Resistencia, and every singleother chapel I havebeen to.I feel amazing andatpeace.

Illtry to be betterat writing. Momma, ElderMendoza andI have the same birthday!So we will berighteously andsuper obediently partying it up likecrazy people the 28th. Juuusstttt so you know, ;) We like treats. A lot. Therearent really treats here in our area. Theyonly have onetype of alfajor, so my streak oftrying a new alfajor every week has been broken.

I just feelso incredibly blessed to be here. We made cookiesfor the mommas that have been so greatto us here in the pueblo andcolonia. They arejust amazing andI am so happy to havethem in my life. Wetoldthem happy mothersday andlet them know how really grateful weareforthem. I amso grateful and blessedtobehere.And incrediblyhappy!

Love you all!

Elder Johnson

Tuesday, October 14, 2014



So I had to reprogram basically the whole computer to get it started up. We have looked every night since we arrived here in Laguna Naineck for a cyber. Today we finally found the little elementary school and found out they have computers. Im not sure if I would consider them computers, but they have lights and a keyboard. So I guess they work...

I love it here. We have been so incredibly blessed. The night before I left the office, I was kneeling down and praying real hard and just asked that everything would turn out okay in my new area. I really do feel insufficient at times when I teach and minister in the mission field-- I have been in a chair counting money and playing with budgets for the last 9 months. 

We didnt start out too well. Our bus picked us up an hour late, and when we were leaving Resistencia, it broke down. A couple hours later, a smaller bus came, picked us up and took us to Clorinda. I sat with Elder Carrera and we just talked about that which we had learned as office Elders. I have been so blessed to serve in the office and to help all the missionaries here in the mission with their money. Maybe they all werent all that happy with me, but I sure have learned a lot.

We slept 6 missionaries in the tiny pension of Elder Israelsen in Clorinda. Toasty. We got up early and headed to Laguna Blanca with plans to sleep there and be traveling back and forth for a couple weeks. We called our Dueña and she let us move into our pension in Laguna Naineck that the Elders had found for us that night. She lent us mattresses, a fan, and a table. She showed us where everything is, and has just been a huge help. What a blessing. 

The next day we ran into a member that was just put into tears that we were in the city. She moved from Buenos Aires with intentions to build up the church here in Laguna Nainek, but a few things happened and she ended up going a little astray. She was so happy she even brought us cookies!! Woo hoo!!!! We have been working with her and her precious little family. They made the long haul hour walk to church in the colony.

The furniture store people have also been a huge blessing. They always let us know where they need to go and give us rides when needed. Such amazing people. We gave the family a Book of Mormon, and they were just so graeful. Im so glad that we have the opportunity to make a first impression with the people. Last night we were asking the Hermana about where we should go buy food. After explaining the whole town to us, she brought us a full dinnner. I was just too happy, and so grateful for a nice little dinner (we have been having problems finding lots of food to buy here and coordinating it with our schedule-- rice with eggs has been getting pretty old honestly). This is such a special people, and I feel incredibly blessed to be here.

The little group of members is doing great. We started off great working with these special priesthood holders and doing divisions. We had a church attendance of 33 this week. The investigators were amazing, and 11 came, many bringing friends and family. I feel so excited to work with these people. Half of the sacrament meeting, as well as our lessons are in Toba, but it is okay. I feel like I am in Havasupai again. I love these special aborigine people-- they have such great faith and love for the Lord.

Lets go for best week ever #2!!!

Elder Johnson

Tuesday, October 7, 2014



What an amazing week. Boy has it flown by. We haven’t had much time at all to work in our area, but the time in our area was so productive and efficient. We carried out divisions with two amazing members of the ward—so many members were excited to go out with us to the point that we had 3 companionships heading out in the same night. I left with Hermano Vega. What an incredible, kind man. He has served as bishop, stake president, and now he is serving as the early, EARLY, morning seminary teacher. He spoke with me, answered questions, and really was a mentor to me as we walked to our appointment. We visited the Enriquez family who has been out of work for so long, and have really had this as a spiritual obstacle in their lives. The last time we went by, we invited them to pass by the employment center over there in the church. They exercised a little faith, prayed a little harder, looked a little more diligently, and some great results turned out. They both found jobs in the same weekend, and are just feeling happy and blessed and really recognizing that they are receiving amazing blessings.

We carried out service for Bishop Shulz twice this last week. What a great family! I feel so blessed for the opportunities and blessings I have been given to come to know, love, and work with these amazing leaders in the church. I have learned so much from their examples and their manner of loving and leading these groups of faithful members and those who have fallen astray in this special region of Argentina. I MOWED THE LAWN (with a PUSH mower!) I miss mowing the lawn Saturday mornings. I love service. Oh man I just love it. Especially when I have the chance to serve those whom I love as so.

I will be heading to a new area to open it up to missionary work. Before, ten years ago or so, missionaries visited by frequently on bicycle to the point where a small group was formed even with a little capilla. However, without bicycle the city has been left behind. There have never been missionaries stationed there. I will be covering a small village of aborigines, La Primavera, and a small city named Laguna Naineck. Laguna Naineck has never had missionaries before. The two towns are close by a larger town named Clorina, which is right next to the border or Asuncion, Paraguay. I will be heading up there with Elder Mendoza, an ex zone leader that has been working in Reconquista, Santa Fe. He´s a little guy from Lima, Peru, but he is a working machine.

OH!!!! Then we´ve got transfers. I am so excited and feel so incredibly blessed to go serve the people in La Primavera and Laguna Naineck. Every night since seeing the transfers, I have laid in bed thinking about this group of special saints and people up near Clorinda. As I listened to the general conference, I thought and pondered about them so much in how I can help them, serve them, and help that little group of members to grow and eventually be a branch. I feel so comforted by the spirit as I think about this great task. I have been in an office chair the majority of the time here in the mission; I don’t really feel all that practiced at making changes such as these. However, as I listened to the conference, I was comforted in knowing that my abilities and capabilities will be increased beyond my own so that I may complete this task that I have been assigned. I feel so blessed to be able to work with Elder Mendoza. I know that as we work together, we will have success.

The assistants visited the Primavera a few weeks ago to start looking for a place to live, and to talk with the local members and leaders about bringing them missionaries. President, and the members, have been waiting for this for a long time now. Elder Ortiz, told me that the members were just about in tears when they heard that they would be receiving missionaries finally. I feel so humbled to be able to serve this little group who I already love. It will be definitely different than sitting in an office chair and handling money, but I am sure that the Lord will help us both.

As we were getting ready to see transfers, I was reading the scriptures, and began joking with the Elders here in the office. Alma is relating faith in Christ as a seed, and describes a few blessings to us:

And because of your diligence and your faith and your patience with the word in nourishing it, that it may take root in you, behold, by and by ye shall pluck the fruit thereof, which is most precious, which is sweet above all that is sweet, and which is white above all that is white, yea, and pure above all that is pure; and ye shall feast upon this fruit even until ye are filled, that ye hunger not, neither shall ye thirst.

I read this scripture to the other Elders and began playing with them how this scripture was just like that which is passing with me. I never “suffered” here in the office. But I just love so much working in the mission field. I feel, especially knowing now where I am going and the people I will be helping, that the fruit and blessings will be delicious and just amazing. I am so excited to start this new chapter in my mission. It will be an amazing experience.

We headed to the Matto family to say goodbye. What an amazing, converted family. As I spoke with Andrea, Gabriel, Agustin and Carolina, I just felt stronger and stronger that this work really isn’t mine. I can’t change people to the extremity that this family has changed. I personally can’t bring happiness to the lives of people like this family has received. But the Lord can. And through his only true church here on the earth today, his restored gospel, sacred and so necessary ordinances we may perform as we come to accept him, people change. I love that about the mission—getting front row seats to this amazing changing process in the lives of people through the atonement. I know it’s true. I feel it more and more daily.

Elder Johnson

                                                    Goodbyes with the Matto family!
 Sent Elder Santana home this morning. He has helped me so much.

Pictures of the office elders´ house

 We put all 8 bunks in the same room. A party every night :)

Pictures home this week

 elder mendoza and I heading to the Primavera :)

Elder Ramon enjoying conference

    Friday, October 3, 2014

    Changes are afoot in the office man.‏


    Wow has this week been a great one! I smashed down my kilo of Gridos ice cream in 23 minutes, our Lo Lo´s chicken and waffles were amazing (thank you for the waffle iron) and I had so many great spiritual experiences.

    I am using this year mark as a “restart”. Fix some great goals, start a new journal, leave some bad habits and attitudes behind and start fresh with a new year. I am feeling incredibly excited about the work, so I am hoping that I can maintain this excitement. I love the mission so much.

    Saturday, we had the great opportunity to see Carolina Matto be baptized over there in barrio II. I left barrio II back in April, and since the baptism of Andrea, we have been waiting for everything to work out so that Carolina, her sister, could be married and baptized. A good half year later, we were able to see this amazing woman set the example for her husband and daughter and follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized by immersion, and by the power that God has given man here on the earth. I have such a testimony of this Priesthood power—only by this power can baptisms, sealings, and other incredibly sacred ordinances be valid. It was such a touching experience to sit by Agustin and Gabriel, the sons of Andrea, who are now fanatics of the gospel who are truly converted and know that this gospel is true. Andrea faithfully holds a calling and has rock hard set goals to go to the temple when financial circumstances permit. I feel so blessed and humbled to see some of the amazing fruits of the prayer, study, and work we dedicated to this family. All of it starting with a “last door” of Elder Howlett and I on a hot humid night in February when all we really wanted to do was get on the colectivo and head home. I know that the spirit guided us to that home. It has been such a blessing to see this family make incredible and life changing gospel as they have come to accept the restored and only complete gospel of Jesus Christ here on the earth. As Ammon said while glorying in the Lord:

    “Therefore, let us glory, yea, we will glory in the Lord; yea, we will rejoice, for our joy is full; yea, we will praise our God forever.Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long suffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel. “ Alma 26:16
    I cannot express the smallest part of the feelings I have as a servant in the work of the Lord.

    Sunday night I went on divisions with a recent convert 16 year old priest in the ward Ezequiel Gomez. I love working with the future missionaries. One of the reasons is because I remember the days when the missionaries dragged me out to go work with them. Such incredible missionaries that had such an impact on my life. Surely they had so much patience for my lack of knowledge and teaching skills, poor guys. But they made a difference in my life and made it assured and firm to me that I needed to go out on a mission. Although Ezequiel wanted to take pictures of every single thing we did—waiting for the bus, in the bus, walking out of the office, and the list goes on, I had an incredible experience with him.

    We are working so much better with members as well, and I am seeing such results in this ward. As I gave a small talk as Bishop Shulz asked yesterday to say farewell to the ward, I was so filled with emotion. I came into the ward missing Barrio II. I missed the members, the priests, my converts and the less active members with whom I was working. I learned to love the ward when I fixed the goal to change the culture of the ward—to help us be a rescuing, finding and loving ward. The ward still has a long ways to go, but as I looked out into the congregation, I felt the love I had for each and every member of this little group of saints God has here in the middle of nowhere Argentina Resistencia. They have made SO much progress, and are excited about extending a hand of love to those that need it and to start working together in the work of the Lord. I love them so much, and it hurts my heart a little to start saying goodbye to them. We have divisions and lessons with members planned out for this last little amount of time I will be here in the ward.

    The talent show turned out AMAZING. We did the chin act upside-down thing (if you want a performance, all you need to do is ask president). We were named Los Pericles, and just had the whole crowd on their feet. Even though we practiced the least out of all the acts, we just made everyone so happy. Just a really great time with these Elders that I love so much. I don’t know if that helped out image as missionaries in the ward or if it just turned us into upside down singing chins that don’t know the words to any primary songs… (Who would have known that popcorn popping would be so hard? Palomitas isn’t even a word here…)

    Now if this is boasting, even so will I boast; for this is my life and my light, my joy and my salvation, and my redemption from everlasting wo. Yea, blessed is the name of my God, who has been mindful of this people, who are a branch of the tree of Israel, and has been lost from its body in a strange land; yea, I say, blessed be the name of my God, who has been mindful of us, wanderers in a strange land.

    I started pday a little late today because we had an audit of the mission. Last night and all this morning. But then he took us out to a nice parrilla (Hermano Gomez Paz is the best). Oh man. Im sorry Uncle Sam, but American barbecues (how in the world do you spell that??) have nothing on a nice Argentine Asado. I was just about the happiest thing alive here in Argentina during that lunch. He explained to us that, sure, we might not have tons of time out in the field bringing others unto Christ, but the hours we sacrificed are multiplied by 20 in the precious hours missionaries have to preach and bring others to Christ. I loved that.

    President will show us transfers TOMORROW! MAÑÑÑAAANNAAAA. So Ill know where I will be shipping off to this upcoming  wednesday. Ill be on Tuesday to let ya know momma.

    I love this work. Its just TOO good. How was I so blessed to have this gospel in my life. Go share it with someone :)

    Elder Johnson

                                                        Elder Williams and I after the audit