Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Catching Fire

HI family,
yup, catching fire, we're on fire! fernando's baptism was awesome. Funny story- so he was an ideal investigator this past month- never any questions, never any doubts, just how he could get baptized. it was so perfect, we were always trying to figure out what his doubt was. He had his baptismal interview on friday and we were at the church waiting for him to get out. it was really funny because there were actually another investigator getting his baptismal invterview the same day and that guy went in for his interview later and came out like 30 mins before fernando. we were getting kind of nervous that something had come out that he had failed to mention to us. Finally- after an hour!!! he came out. Apparently, our DL made the mistake of asking him how he met the missionaries,haha 30 minutes later they were able to start the interview! when he got out Fernando was telling us about how he told him his whole life story! which, for real, he really did tell his whole life story. he first met the missionaries in 1992 and he actually showed us this week the first book of mormon that he had gotten from them! it was so cool this guy has been prepared!
when we started teaching him, we asked him to show us on our map where he lives so we could make sure he lives in our area (we always taught him in his niece's house). well, he pointed to a place in our map, so we thought we were ok to teach him. turns out though, that he actually lives like 2 blocks out of the ward boundaries....a detail that just came out the night before his baptism!! really?!?!?!? we couldn't have found that out a month ago?! we spent the last 15 minutes before bed time and all morning trying to figure out what to do with the DL and ZLs. ...awkward...well, thanks to fernando being a rich man and having a million houses, we were able to baptize him because his niece lives in a house that he owns, which is in our boundaries ( big time loop hole!) not sure that's a kosher excuse, but that's what they told us to do, so we did it. eventually of course, he'll have to go to his ward, but for now since he has family in our ward, he can come  here. woops! well, our perfect investigator finally had a flaw! haha, but he's still on fire! he was so happy to be baptized. what a day!

this friday, we had a thanksgiving dinner. it was so funny. someone needs to explain what thanksgiving is! it was 80s themed and they had the primary singing christmas songs. haha oh i love latinos!

we're getting a little nervous for december. we have been told that every companionship in the mission must baptize in the month of december. we don't have anything solid yet though, so we're kind of nervous, but hopefully this week is a good one. it has to be if we get a baptism in december. 

things are going well. it's freezing here. probably not as cold as home, but for california it's cold! my sweaters are getting more trunky than i am, they have holes! haha hope things are going well.
love you! 

hermana lapierre

some pics from the baptism, the 2 teenagers are his great nieces but they were in my first ward in the mission- in tujunga! 

love you, 

hermana lapierre


Tuesday, November 12, 2013


Dear Family, 

This week has been awesome! I was looking at pictures from the beginning of my mission and wow....I was a little chubby huh?! haha well nothing like tortillas rice and beans to help you lose weight! Anyways, life is good. 

We are continuing to see many miracles here in Bel 2 and Los Robles. We are super excited for Fernando Castillo's baptism in a couple weeks. He's progressing really well. It was really funny- we had a lesson on the word of wisdom the other day and as we were introducing the lesson, he started testifying of how not drinking, smoking, etc. is so important and how it helps you feel closer to God (yup, he totally said that!). He is super excited to be baptized, he told us that he wants us to talk to him like he's already a Mormon. He is so awesome! It seems like we've met him at the end of a life long spiritual preparation to receive the restored Gospel. 

The other day (aka last week), we were walking down the street and this woman came up to us to ask us where our church is and if we could come teach her family about the Gospel. umm....sure! yeah, we can do that! well, we went to their house this week and it was amazing! They've been looking for a church to go to for a long time. Actually, her husband told us that he saw missionaries biking down the street the other day (before she met us) and he felt like he should follow them to see where the church was. When he went to grab his bike and came back they were gone. Then, a couple days later, his wife saw us! that's when she stopped us to ask if we'd teach her. They are so awesome! The spirit was so strong in the lesson. 

East LA is AWESOME!! It is so different than the other areas i've been in. I love it. I've never smelled so much weed in my life. But, it's ok, that's why we need to help them! haha I wish I could take more pictures and show you this place. Love it.

love you guys!

Hermana LaPierre

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

November 4th

Hello Family!! 
Remember when I said that this was my dream transfer?! Well, it has really been my dream transfer- it's been amazing!!! I love everything about this transfer- my companion, the area, the investigators, the members. Miracles all around!
This week has been awesome. 

I love Hermana Lopez- she just gets it. I am amazed how similar our experiences have been. We both come from a big family, grew up in the church, but our parents are converts, have had similar family experiences on our missions, similar experiences that brought us out to the mission, experiences on the mission- especially similar beginnings of our missions (she's only been out for 5 months), same age!! (not 19 yrs old!) similar intrests, anyways, suffice it to say that we get along great! She feels the same way I do about the Gospel and missionary work. I love it! I've never had a companion who feels so much like I do. I am so excited to work East LA like crazy this transfer! Alma and Amulek, my friends.  President said that he's been keeping track of us (our letters, entrevistas, numbers, etc) and has been waiting to put us together for a long time! I'm excited to see what happens.

We've met so many people who are prepared, the work is really growing really fast here. In fact, we met a man this week- Fernando Castillo. A member called us up one day and said she had a family member who was ready for the gospel and asked if we'd come over right then to teach him. When we got there he explained that he's known Mormons for a really long time and he even lived in Utah for a while. He was really impressed with them and the way they live their lives. He's been coming to church the past couple weeks as well. Before we were even able to invite him to baptism, he asked us if we'd be able to baptize him! It was amazing! When he came to church yesterday he looked just like a member! We extended a baptismal date the second visit, which he accepted without hesitation. It's kind of funny because of course usually you spend so much time trying to convince people that they want to be baptized, but now, we're kind of slowing him down trying to help him really feel the conversion process- he just accepts everything already and since the first visit talks about how he wants to go to the temple to baptize his sister. 

The whole week has been like that. We've been finding people who already want to get baptized and are really progressing towards baptism. We met another woman who has been looking for answers since her daughter had a tragic accident 4 years ago- both her and her daughter have been looking for a church that could give them the answers they have. The Spirit was so strong in the lesson. Every lesson we teach is powerful and the Spirit testifies so powerfully to them. Even though I was still transitioning and trying to figure out everything in a new area, we feel like we barely even did anything and the Lord blessed us so much. I'm excited to actually get to work and see what else can happen. 

I am so grateful for the experiences I've had as they have helped me turn to the Lord in a much deeper way. I've begun to understand what it really means to be a disciple of Christ. He's helped me understand how much I really need to depend on Him. Before I think I would be more tempted to see the success we see now as a manifestation of how "good of a missionary I am", but now, I see how much it is not about that. He is a kind and loving Heavenly Father and so has blessed us, not because I "deserve it" but because He will always bless his faithful children in His own time and way. The more I humble myself and open myself to His will, the more peace and joy I find in His work and as His servant. 

so keep on going even if you don't feel like the lord is helping, keep going- he'll help! i promise!

the stake relief society activity this weekend about missionary work. they were trying to get members to give us referrals. They had us do a skit- which was really funny- more so because it was so pathetic! We did it about how members can share the gospel with friends through service. it was funny. that's where the picture comes from (well, afterwards). Someone in the relief society also thought they had a great way to get referrals for us. They went through every missionary that died this past year and gave a bio on every one- talked about how they died, etc. nothing like sympathy and tears to get the members involved to share the gospel! haha. 

love you lots. Wish i had a year more to write about everything that's happened this month, but there's a mountain of missionaries waiting for the computers, so I've got to go. 
Hna. LaPierre
 (this picture is kind of funny, but it's our companionship flags-Mexico and the US!!)

Monday, November 4, 2013

I'M IN EAST LA!!!!!!


This weekend was transfer calls and we were expecting Hermana Southworth to leave since she's been in the area for longer, but nope! I got sent to Belveder 2 and Los Robles Wards, which is East LA! I am so excited, I've wanted to serve in East LA my whole mission so I am so excited! AND- I have a native companion, Hermana Lopez, I am so excited!! my dream transfer! So the weird thing is that now, I'm covering 2 wards, Los Robles is a singles ward, so that will be fun. 

This week was really good. I'm sad to leave Rimgrove. We've been setting up a cool activity with the young women to make cookies with them and have them take the cookies to some less actives and share spiritual thoughts with them. The young women are so excited to do it, so I'm sad I'm not going to be there with them. Things are on the upswing there. The sister that is coming to take my place will be awesome. She's super cool, and suuuuper tall! The ward will not know what happened to them!

We had a mission tour this week with Elder Sitati. It was awesome! He talked about our purpose and broke it down into 8 parts and talked about the why and how of each part. He was really good. His wife talked about being a disciple of Christ, it was so powerful! Something I loved is that they talked alot about just keeping covenants and how if we keep our covenants than we don't have to worry about having the Spirit, and being blessed. It's so true. I love that. The Gospel is so simple. 

Hope you all have a great week. It's taking me forever to write this letter because I keep getting distracted with other missionaries talking. 

Love you, 

Hermana LaPierre

Oct. 21

Welp, you just heard from me about 4 days ago and I doubt very many of you still read these. But if you do, you're troopers. And I love you.
The temple this week was AWESOME!!!! There is no way it could have gotten any better. The member that came with us owns a restaurant and since we left around lunch time, right as we got in the car, she said " I thought you probably hadn't eaten lunch yet, so I brought you some lunch", as she handed us breakfast burritos...ah!....I love Latinos, especially their food. we got to the temple just before 1 so we missed our sesson, and had to wait for the next one, which was great! because we got to do iniciatories. Nothing like not going to the temple for a super long time to make you appreciate every moment and every word. It was perfect- so spiritual and so reassuring. Then we finally got to go do endowments and if iniciatories weren't good enough, that was a suuuuper cool experience. It was really instructive and insightful. I Love the temple!
We decided this week to go to an area that we don't usually go to- we have no members, potentials or formers down there, so really no reason to go. Plus, the area is super nice, so for Spanish work, usually means there's no work there, but we went anyways. We decided before we went that we'd say a prayer at every cross street that the Lord would bless us with new opportunities and with people to teach. As we walked and prayed, our prayers were answered! Pretty much every person we talked to was Latino (kind of a shock for that area), and everyone told us we could come back! One man we talked to, Eriberto, was really nice. He's in a Catholic Evangelizing group, but was really nice and really open to hearing more about what we do. He told us to come back(maybe so he can evangelize to us?!haha). Our prayers did not bring crazy miracles, we didn't pick up any investigators while we were there, but our eyes were opened, and we got to see that there are people that we can work with in other areas than the ones we always go to. We met another woman, Anita too. She was walking to her car when we saw her in a rush to a party, but she stopped to give us her contact information so we could come back this week! The Lord hears our prayers. I'm excited to see what happens.  
Hope you're doing well,
love you all,
Hermana LaPierre

 here are some pictures you can laugh at, more of me trying to bike! how would you not want to listen to the Gospel from that girl?! haha. (don't mind the garments- i did everything I could to hide them!)

October 16

Good morning family!
This week has been good, kind of sad. I don't know how many people heard about it, but one of the elders in our mission, Elder Page, was killed this past week in a biking accident. He was hit head on by a car. What made it sadder for us is that we had just talked to him on Sunday at General Conference. He'd just gotten to the field 3 weeks earlier and is also from the east coast (North Carolina). I know his trainer really well- I was in their zone a few months ago, so it was pretty sad. We had a memorial service on Sunday on his behalf as a mission. Elder Ostler (his trainer) spoke for a while. Elder Page was an incredible missionary from what it sounds like. His father had passed away about 3 years before he left for his mission and he told Elder Ostler that he had a mission to fulfill on his mission- he felt that he was there to teach people the power and reality of the plan of salvation so every contact, every lesson, etc. always related back to the plan of salvation. I was impressed by how much love he (Elder Ostler) had for him. I can only imagine what it must be like for him, but he handled it so well. It was such a powerful, uplifting meeting. Isn't it so interesting how funerals can be uplifting? I am so grateful for the plan of salvation. My testimony of it's reality has been strengthened and confirmed this weekend. He Lives! Jesus Christ lives and loves us so much. He lives so the sting of death does not last. Sometimes I refer to the Atonement as messy, because it is used to handle the "mess" of life- every question, every pain can be overcome through the Atonement. Sometimes we don't like to admit or face our problems because they seem unconventional or because we know we shouldn't feel or think a certain way, but it doesn't matter because guess what- you can overcome it! There is so much power in being open with ourselves and others, because the Lord will deliver us out of any wilderness if we let Him. The Lord's plan is a perfect plan.
On a happier note, yesterday we were on exchnages outside of the mission in Chino! (in english work, that area is now in the Ranchacucamunga (no idea how to spell that) mission, but in spanish work, it's still in arcadia). It was my first day every biking as a missionary, and it was a crazy experience! (don't laugh too hard at the pictures). First off, the skirt was crazy. Too flowy- way too flowy. so I had to pin it like a diaper like 20 times. I think the funniest part of the day was when we were getting ready to leave from an appointment once, and I was pinning up my skirt. This woman just stopped and stared at me for a good 10 minutes. finally she just said, in a semi disgusted voice "What are you DOING?!" my comp for the day, Hna. Vellinga said "We're making pants!" again, silence. she just stared at us until we left! haha. what a day! we switched bikes half way through the day because the other bike was alittle much for me (if only my legs were just a liiiiiittle bit longer). the other one didn't really change the height issue, but it made my bumb feel a little better :) I'll try to add pics so you can see it!
Today is our temple day and we should be heading out in about half an hour! I'm so excited! it's been crazy getting a member to take us but we found someone! she is so great! i'm sure there will be a multitude of blessings for her and her husband, who woke up at 4 to take the elders to the temple this morning!
love you all lots. Have a great day!
Hermana LaPierre