Note from mom: All missionaries are accounted for after the earthquake yesterday in Chile. We hope we will hear from our son soon, though.
I am DL again, for a different district, and I am still with Elder Young. That isn’t surprising, nor am I upset. Elder Young is an excellent missionary. I feel the more motivated, focused and spiritual that I have for my whole mission. I think that I have understood a few things that before weren’t very clear to me, like the missionary purpose, vision and manner, and we are working smarter than I ever have in my whole mission. During stake conference, our area seventy and president pounded into us the importance of unity, between the members and the missionaries. One thing that I had not understood very well is that missionary work is that missionary’s work. Let me explain. We are here literally to be the “hands of the Lord”, which means that we are just instruments. It is important that we stay with the spirit and that we understand the doctine just as it is important that a knife is kept sharp; because it we don’t work properly, we can’t be used to our full potential. However, just as a knife is useless if there is no one there to use it, so are we useless if there is no one there to guide us. We need the members doing the missionary work, and we especially need the leadership to do their part to guide us.
This ward is weak. It isn’t as weak as El Castillo, but it has some very fatal errors. Elder Young and I were in companionship study one day, discussing what is to be done, when it occured to us that, if we can be bold with investigaters and less actives, why couldn’t we be bold with members? If the leadership is not doing what they need to be doing, why should the missionaries sit back on their hands and patiently endure it? We are called to invite others to come to Christ, but we are not told to whom. We suddenly felt liberated, fearless, ready to say exactly what needs to be said. We have been making a lot of plans for how we are going to get the ward moving an improve the unity between the missionaries and the members. We have been visiting the presidency of every organization, telling them exactly what they should be doing, helping them, asking them, begging them to do their part, and, if it is necesary, testifying against them by the power of the Holy Spirit that they are wrong so that they are moved to action. We are going to take every opportunity that God gives us to help them, and we are going to focus on getting them in line with the vision that God has for all of his children, working with the stake to get them there.
I know that I shouldn’t say this, but I wish that I had understood this concept earlier. I could have done a lot of good in both other wards, and helped a lot of people out. We missionaries are not here for much time, so we need to make the biggest foot-print possible so that we can make a lasting impact for good here. We are young, but Alma said in chapter 32 that words will be placed in the mouths of babes that will confound the wise. And it is urgent that we do something. If we do not raise our voices against all that is evil in the time that we have, we will share in the condemnation of those that failed to repent before it was too late for them.
This church can not fail, but the people within it can. The promise that the church generally would never fall into apostasy was not only a promised blessing, but a warning. The church of Christ is the church that is exactly the church that Christ established. Nephi says that there are only two churches, the church of Christ, and the great and abominable church. If we are doing something that is not in harmony with the church of Christ, we are not part of the church of Christ. So of what church are we? It is our solemn responsibility as missionaries to help these wards where we are not fall into apostasy like that. I have been giving that a lot of thought and a lot of study, and I think that I understand things a little bit clearer now. I guess that I have gone a little fire and brimstone, but that is probably just because of the work that is happening right now here.
Love you all. I’ll keep you updated on any successes.