Monday, March 14, 2011


How are you all? As I write this email I am just so excied because I know that soon I'll be seeing you all in person. Yay!

Right now I'm spending my last pday in downtown. The district wanted to get together at Pizza Hut for my last hoorah. So we just ate there. It was fun.

So how was your week? For me, this past week has seriously been great. I'm pretty sure it's gone faster than any other week in my mission. We have been teaching a ton, doing splits with the members, having fun FHE´s and really just talking to and finding so many prepared people. I love how the Lord is constantly preparing people and guiding us in His work.

We have about three people who are really progressing and should be getting baptized within a few weeks. One of them is Lucia, a 22 year old who we actually just taught for the first time on Saturday. We went to her house on Saturday afternoon to meet with her sister but she wasn't home so we ended up teaching Lucia. Ends up, about a year ago she met with Elders in another area, moved and lost touch with the church. Yesterday morning we went to pick her up for church and she and her two kids were all ready to go and waiting. Seriously, that's the best...when people are ready and we don't have to clap a million times or drag them out of bed. She loved church and has good desires. Great lady.

Funny each night my companions and I are always just sitting on our beds writing in our journals. One night this past week we were sitting there and all of a sudden Hermana Paipa started screaming. Like, so loud. Seriously, I thought someone had like entered the apt or something. Ends up a gecko slash like lizard thing had crawled up her pants! Oh my gosh! We were all laughing so hard!

So, this is officially my last email as Hermana Sargent. Wait, sad. All I have to say is how grateful I am for this time I have had in Paraguay. I can hardly believe I'll be back in the states next week. Feels so unreal.

I love Paraguay. It is such a simple country. I love the Paraguayans. So loving. So humble and kind. I'll miss them. I love the gospel. Living it is the key to real happiness. I love the Lord. Never before in my life have I felt so close to my Savior.

I feel like the mission has taught me a lot. I've learned what joy is. The importance of obedience and discipline. The people here and my companions have showed me and taught me about patience, trust and love. I've learned that maybe bugs aren't all that bad, I can live without AC and that avocados can be huge! I've come to understand what our purpose in this life is and the importance of enduring to the end and honoring the covenants we've made.

I have learned that God exists and really is a God of miracles. I testify that He knows each and every one of us personally! He hears and answers our prayers. I have felt His love each day and have witnessed the love He has for others as they've applied the atonement in their lives. I know His plan is one of happiness and hope.

And this is why I love being a missionary! Because each day we are able to go out and talk, preach and testify to everyone about our Heavenly Father, His son and the restored gospel! These past 18 months have been a sacred time and a time I will always remember for sure. I'm grateful for the Holy Ghost that prompted me several times to start my mission papers. I almost ignored that voice. But I'm glad I decided to follow it. I realize that this is what Heavenly Father wanted me to do.

So, I have all this week to work hard and next Tuesday is my last day in Amambay. Early Wednesday morning I'll be in the mission office to start a day of activities (including going to the temple!) with President and Sister Callan and the other missionaries who are leaving. Then...Thursday I leave and Friday I'll be with you all! How crazy! Seriously, it just doesn't even seem real to me. I try to imagine it and I can't. I'll believe it when I'm actually there! Wow, even though I'm sad to leave I'm super excited to see you all!

I'm sure that mom is possibly planning some things for when I'm back.......umm, I'm wondering if mexican food and a good, thick like Ghiradelli status brownie can work their way into these plans? ¡¡por favor!! haha

Seriously, I love you all so much. I hope you know that. I feel so grateful to have such a supportive, loving family. Thank you for always writing me. Thank you for your constant prayers and love. You have all helped me so much and given me strength to keep on going as I've been here in South America.

I know that God lives, Jesus is the Christ and His atonement is real. I know that the gospel has been restored. ¡que seamos fieles y perseveremos para siempre para que podamos vivir en el reino celestial!


Eating Chupa's like a frozen popsicle for 5 cents...saves us on hot afternoons.

The entrance into "village" in my's a way poor part with shack after shack...
homes to about 50 families.

Pics of us with some grapefruit we picked.

Monday, March 7, 2011


Dearest family,

How are you all? Wow! I'm so happy to be writing you. How weird is it that this is the second to last email I'll write home.....I thought this time would never come and now it's just around the corner. Have to admit, super excited to see you all.

Anyways, this week has been a whirlwind. It's passed by quick. Okay, here are some of the highlights...

Friday night there was a youth fireside. It was all about the mission and how the mission effects us in different stages of our lives. It was awesome. It started off with a young priest who told of his desires to serve and how he is going to make it possible. Then, the 2 Elders spoke about the mission life then I had to talk for about 5 minutes about what I have learned from the mission, my testimony and my hopes for after the mission. Then, they had 2 recently RM's share their thoughts, a 50 year old High Priest from the ward talked about how serving a mission has helped him in his life and then the Bishop spoke. It was a way good fireside. I really enjoyed it and I think all the youth did too. I love it because alot of the young woman in this ward have strong desires to serve!

Okay. Saturday we had an interesting experience. We went to Magali's house. Our 12 year old progressing investigator who has come to church a few times and was going to be baptized this week. She came out and said she wasn't able to talk with us because her grandparents were there and they didn't like the mormon church. So, we were just chatting with her outside and all of a sudden her grandma came and was like can you guys come in and talk to my husband? We were like sure. I was totally naive and thought oh sweet, we can teach them both! Um, that definitely wasn't the case. we sat down and Magalis grandpa started off by saying how he and his whole family are Roman Catholic and how we are brain washers, devil worshippers and don't believe in Christ. Wow. seriously, I just felt so sad while talking to him. We tried to explain but he was def hard in heart and didn't want to listen. It's so sad when these youth have testimonies but because of the "tradition of their fathers" aren't able to progress like they would like to. It's sad. But, I know that we are planting seeds and one day when Magali is a bit older she'll be able to choose for herself.

Um, let's see. This last Ttuesday I got my Valentines package! Thank you mom!!! I laughed when I saw the new skirt! I have like three weeks to wear it! But, igual no's cute! PS, loved those cute little 100 calorie pack pop tarts. Yay.

Yesterday was a special day at church because we got a new bishopric. the bishop, Bishop Grau had been bishop here in Amambay for over 12 years. Yes, TWELVE YEARS!! I can't even imagine! But, I know the new Bishop and his counselors will do great. I think change is an exciting, good thing.

We are teaching Cynthias friendMmonica. I'm not sure if i wrote about her or not. But okay, she's great. She's 17 years old and will be getting baptized on the 26th of this month. She is really gaining a testimony of the Book of Mormon. And yesterday when we taught her she said the closing prayer and asked Heavenly Father to help her prepare for her baptism! I love when investigators pray for things specifically like that! It shows me they really have the desire and are serious about it.

I feel like I have felt so many different emotions this past week. From completing 18 months on the mission to being called a brain washer to finding some awesome people and seeing inactive families who we have been visiting with return to's been a roller coaster ride for sure!

I know this church is true. I am grateful for my time to serve the Lord as a full time missionary. I am grateful for the Book of Mormon. Even though prophets in the ancient times wrote it, it's for us. I am grateful for the opportunity to read and study this book each day because through this book I have come to personally know my Savior and better recognize His hand in my life and in the lives of others on a daily basis. I know President Monson is a prophet in these latter days. I am so looking forward to general conference! It's soon!

The gospel is true! And seriously brings such happiness to our lives when we live by its teachings!

Me, Hermana Paipa y Herman Lewis at church yesterday.....we didn't even notice it but everyone was like oh you sisters are dressed like the Paraguayan, white and blue! (and the US too).
So we had to take a pic. Funny.

Awesome fruit stand in our area

Me and Hna Lewis in LA JUNGLA! Yeahhh.

Me with Cynthia and the scripture case I made for her!

Me with my package! Thanks mom!!!

The district last Tuesday.

Monday, February 21, 2011


Saturday was baptism day! 14 year old Josue was baptized! Okay, so his mom is way involved in another religion and honestly, is kinda of an interesting woman. She is always telling us about dreams and visions she has had. She told us that she had a vision where the Lord showed her all the good people and told showed her that we were okay for her son to be talking to and that Renato was a good guy too. So, because she had her dream she allowed her son to be baptized. The baptism went great on Saturday....well, we always have problems with filling up the font and last minute people calling us telling us they can't give the talk or prayer.....ugh...but I guess just that's how it is sometimes! After being baptized Josue shared his testimony and said that he feels really happy and has finally found the peace that he had been looking for. Wow! He's a special kid.

Funny story. This past Monday we had an appointment with Josue. We were just sitting out in his yard and he came out with a little bouquet of roses and was like there is a rose for each one of you....because it was Valentines Day! Haha! He was like "my mom wants me to give them to you" . So cute. But oh man, I'm sure he felt as awkward as can be giving roses to the sister missionaries. Ha! We still have them in our apartment. I sent you the pic of us with the roses...Hna paipa thinks we look like we're in some Miss Universe Pageant or something but missionary style! We got a good laugh out of it.

We had zone conference this past Tuesday. Like always, it was awesome and I really enjoyed it. The Stake President here in the Asuncion stake came and spoke to us. He talked about how as missionaries there are two things that are essential for us to and the spirit. He also focused his thoughts on how we can work with and strengthen the members. Also, I loved what President Callan spoke on...we all had our New Testaments open and we read from and focused on certain stories and parables of Christ's life and how they relate to the missionary work. It was awesome to hear his insights and thoughts on these scriptures. Also, since that was my last zone conference I had the opportunity to share my testimony with everyone there. Seriously, I remember when I first got here I thought that the time would never come for me to stand at the pulpit and share my testimony...and now it's already come and gone. Basically, love zone conferences. I learn so much and really try to apply everything we learn into the daily tasks of the missionary work.

Still enjoying the threesome. Hermana Lewis and I get along way well. It's fun getting to know her better and seeing all of her first reactions to this foreign country! One of the advantages to having a threesome is that we can have a member come with us and we can do splits...more lessons, more people!

We seem to really be finding and teaching alot of youth who are interested. Their parents...not so much. For instance, we were sharing with a 14 year old girl, Claudia, who we've been teaching for a week or so now. We asked if she wanted to invite her mom to come listen so she did. However, her mom didn't want to and shouted out "I'm Catholic. I don't want to play with God." Umm...eeek. But, we continue to teach Claudia and other youth as well. We have 4 people who are preparing for baptism in March and they are all under 20 years old! I'm amazed at their desire to do good and learn.

People are giving us those huge avocados right and left and now we are pro's at making good. If only we had tortilla chips! We have to eat it with other things. But it's all good.

Well, I think that's about it from here in Asuncion. I'm happy to be here and to be a missionary. I love to share the gospel with the people every day.

I love you all lots! Thank you for everything! Have a great week!! Be happy!
Our Valentine's roses--haha

Me and Hna Lewis eating chipa....a traditional Paraguayan food thats pretty yummy! We were coming back from zone conference and like always, some guy got on the bus and had a big basket and was selling chipa....Hna Lewis hadn't tried it yet so we bought one!

Baptism of Josue...Renato baptized.

Street in Amambay after a rain storm!

With some members

Here in downtown!

Here in downtown!

Monday, February 14, 2011


Hey! How are you all? Happy Valentines Day!!

So bascially being in a threesome is awesome and the work is going great. Loving the mish. We are having a lot of fun together.

Yesterday we had a four investigators come to church. And Josue, who is Renato's friend, will be getting baptized this Saturday! Yay!

We are teaching a couple great families. One is a young couple who we met on Friday night. They asked us question after question...alot of "questions of the soul", how will God answer our prayers? Why does God allow suffering and destruction to good people? etc. We had a great lesson with them. Taught about the restoration and through the Book of Mormon, we answered their questions. We have another appointment tonight which we are looking forward to.

The other family is way great but they have a lot of social doubts...since all their family and friends are in a different religion. We visited them yesterday because they didn't come to church after commiting that they'd go. They were explaining to us how it was going to be difficult for them because of their family and friends...I was just like Hermano and Hermana, it looks like you are asking every one for their opinion except for one very important person--you need to pray, ask God and listen to His answer! This is one thing we are really focusing on as a mission is to get people down on their knees and pray so they can receive personal revelation. They told us they pray so hopefully they'll recognize their answer and progress.

I'm not sure if I have mentioned about the Koreans here in Asuncion. There are randomly a lot. It's funny, because they all know Spanish but when we go up to contact them they act like they don't speak Spanish and only talk to us in Korean. ugh!

Tomorrow we have zone conference. I'm totally looking forward to it! This will be my last one..crazy.

Okay. There is like a full out mosquito attack here in Paraguay. I'm not kidding. They are everywhere. Saturday I thought I had Dengue Fever. There are a lot of cases of it here and all of a sudden Saturday morning I felt so fever, aches, nausea, the works. We went to a pharmacy to ask them about something I could take and they told me that it looked like I had Dengue and needed to go to the doctor. No! Seriously, I wanted to cry. I always think of worse case scenarios and imagined me in some third world status hospital getting my blood drawn. Ew. ha! But I called Hermana Callan and asked her what I should do. She said it's most likely that I just had a virus of some sort and told me to do a liquid diet and drink lots of Sprite. So that's what I did. After about 24 hours I was totally fine. Thank goodness!! Saturday was not fun, but I'm totally fine now. So BG!

So there is a scripture that I love. 1 nephi 17:51. I love Nephi's attitude and his own family members were doubting him and making fun of him, etc... but he was just like hey, the Lord has helped me out this far, I'm pretty sure He can help me make a ship! I feel like we can really relate to this. Yes, we have trials and challenges and sometimes some things seem impossible. But if we think about and recognize the tender mercies and help and miracles we've seen and received from the Lord throughout our lives it is evident that He can and will help us out as long as we are doing what He asks us to. I love 1 Nephi!

Well, already did our grocery shopping and are going to head back to the apartment. Hna Lewis and I want to bake something...she wants to make banana bread with chocolate chunks so I think thats what we'll do..yum!

I love you all so much. Thank you for constant support and love.
I pray for you all daily.

Have a great week and I'll be writing next Monday!

¡La iglesia es verdadera! ¡Somos tan bendicidos por tener el evangelio en nuestras vidas!

Me with my comps

Me with's funny how the little kids draw me like totally blonde! Ha!

Thursday, February 10, 2011


¡maiteipa! ¿mbaĆ©cichapa peiko?

Wow, I feel like so much has happened within these past ten days! I was happy to see my inbox full of emails and getting the update on all of you. Yay.

Okay....we had transfers on Wednesday. I am training again! Hermana Lewis from Boise Idaho. She is great! She is an elemenatary ed major at BYUI and is way excited to be here. Her Spanish is...coming along! She'll pick it up in no time. Sometimes she just looks at me and is like what did they just say?! And okay, here is the thing...I'm still in the process of training Hermana Paipa as well. Yes, we are in a trio! It's kinda crazy. I actually found out at the leadership training meeting we had last week. I think President Callan wanted to give me a heads up and prepare. There is a total of 14 sisters in our mission it's not like we have an odd number and have to have trios but President Callan said after much fasting and prayer he felt like this is what he needed to do. So we are in a trio. Really, I'm totally up for it! Learning a lot from the both of them. And so far it's been a lot of fun to have two comps. I was in a threesome in the MTC so I'll be ending my mission the way I started it. It makes it a lot easier too because both Hna Paipa and Lewis are great girls!

Okay. The leadership training conference we had last week was awesome. Itt was basically all morning and afternoon and I learned a ton! We spent a ton of time doing practices and learning how we should better teach some of the doctrine and encourage our investigators to do their part. It was way cool because President Callan did lots of practices and examples so we could learn from him and participate with him in the practices. Like I said, I learned tons. Now I'm just really trying to focus in on what he taught us and apply them in our lessons.

Okay, so it looks like we'll be having a baptism on the 19th. Renato is like Mr. missionary now and wants us to teach all of his friends. Um, okay! Fine with us! We are teaching his 14 yr old friend/neighbor Josue. We taught him for the first time last Monday...we explained the restoration to him and then asked if he had any questions. He asked, "how can I become a member of your church? When can I be baptized?" Wow! Talk about a golden investigator! That's like the question we want every investigator to ask! He has already been to the church 3 times and loves it. Today he left on a YM camping trip with all the other YM and is already way good buds with them. We are excited about him! We are just waiting on his dad's permission....but it looks like everything will be okay!

Mom mentioned something about a cold front up there in Az. It's been so much cooler down here too! Cloudy, not hot. I've been loving it.

So, with Hna Lewis as a companion now we have an hour of language study each morning and not just 30 minutes. I'm going to take advantage of it and learn some more Guarani! Or at least try. It's seriously hard but I want to learn more while I'm here. This morning I was studying Guarani, Hna Lewis was studying Spanish and Hna Paipa, English. We were all trying to do was funny. There is def a mixture of langagues going on.

Okay. Well family, I love you all lots. Can't believe I am now in my last transfer of the mission. Where has the time gone? Everyone is asking me how I feel, and really, I feel normal. I don't feel like next month I'll be going to my house. Hasn't hit me yet. But it's all good. I'm happy to be here in Paraguay. But, when the time comes, I will be so excited to move on. I know that there is life after the mission and that everything will be okay. Ha!

Okay, I'll be writing on Monday!
The church is true! God lives, knows and loves us. Have a great weekend!

CYNTHIAS BAPTISM that was on January 29th! (and Tobias' almost baptism!)

All the hermanas from last change...

Future missionaries from Amambay...Leila and Renato least I hope they both serve!

Me with my two trainees!! Yeahhhhh!

Our threesome eating some avacado and brazillian mango last night.....
they're huge huh???!!! We picked them off the trees!!

Monday, January 31, 2011


Que tal? Can you believe that today is the last day of January! I can't! This month has passed by super fast!

Okay, this week has been a good one....Saturday was baptism day! Yay! Cynthia was baptized! Okay, so hna Paipa and I filled the font up on Thursday and all was good to go. However, Saturday morning we just happened to pass by the chapel and there were a ton of people inside doing some heavy duty cleaning. Seriously, it was like a disaster. And to top everything off, they had emptied the font. NO! We thought we were all prepared and ready to go, but no! It takes about 2 to 3 hours to fill up the font so luckily we happened to pass by the chapel that morning. If not, I don't know what would have happened. Eek. But anyways, the people cleaning told us they would take care of it and refill the font. Well, they did fill it up but the water was like river status. Filthy. Something is like wrong with the pipe. But, everything else went good! Cynthia is SUPER happy! And actually, we've been teaching her 9 yr old nephew, Tobias,who now lives with them. He almost got baptized on Saturday as well. I say almost because yes, he had his interview with the Elder, was dressed in white, but when it was his turn to enter the water he totally had a panick attack. Seriously, we along with everyone else, were trying to get him in the water for like thirty minutes but we had no luck. Ugh! It was crazy. Lots of Paraguayans are afraid of water because they aren't used to it. No beach, no pools, etc. so ya, Tobias was traumatized to say the least. He would not get in. But, hopefully we can get him in the font soon! I think if we have clean water in the font it would help!

Last Tuesday our district meeting was awesome. We talked a lot about the Book of Mormon and its role in the missionary work. At the end of our meeting our district leader invited us one by one to share our testimonies about the Book of Mormon. It was a powerful, spiritual meeting. The spirit was strong. I love the Book of Mormon.

Okay, last Tuesday after the meeting we were on the bus coming back to our area. I was sitting down and looking out the window when I felt a tap on my shoulder. I looked and sitting across the aisle and one row back from me was a 40ish year old man offering me Terere...the traditional Paraguayan drink. (it's like mate but cold). Everyone here carries around their thermals and drink Terere all day. I politely said no gracias to him. Then he started to ask if I was here in Paraguay working. I began to tell him how we were missionaries. He said he knew about the church but had never seen an Hermana before, only Elders. Afterwards, I pulled out a pamphlet about the restoration and began to explain a little bit to him. He told me he would like to attend the church and learn more. Okay! I wrote down his name and direction to pass along the reference to the Elders where he lives. It was cool to share with him! I love riding the bus because we get to talk to people from all different parts of Paraguay! and plant seeds so that other missionaries can teach them in the future!

Hermana Paipa is doing and good and continuing to learn the ropes of the mission. at times she tells me she feels way inadequate to be amissionary. I'm pretty sure that's normal for every new missionary. And honestly, at times I still feel like that! I think we feel like that so we keep ourselves humble and realize we need the Lords help in every moment. One thing that she is really struggling with more than normal is the weather. She is so not used to the hot summer weather. It seems to really be taking a toll on her. In her city she says maximum it reaches 80 degrees. NADA! This past week there were a couple days here where it reached over 110 with 80 percent humidity. HOT! The Elders here in Amambay with us were sick in bed for 3 days because of the sun. Eek! For me, ya, it' hot..but I don't know, I think I'm kinda used to it now. We are just drinking and drinking so much water, it's crazy! I just hope neither one of us get sick. I don't want to be inside all day. I'm super excited for this week because tomorrow we have district mtg. and then Wednesday we have a leadership training meeting with President Callan. It's for the zone leaders, district leaders and trainers. I'm looking forward to it! Should be pretty neat!

Transfers are next week. Yes, this change is coming to an end! Wow! Hermana Rencher...from Dyan's ward, ends her mission this change. Crazy! So...the next time I'll be writing is next Thursday!!

I wanted to send a pic off of Cynthias baptism but this computer isn't letting me. Ugh! I'll have to next week!

Well, we are going to head back to the apt to each lunch. I bought all the ingredients to make a bunch of banana bread to take to all the people who helped out with and participated in the baptism!

Yesterday the Bishop gave the 3rd hour class all about the scripture found in D&C 64:33. I love this scripture. We can't let ourselves bet tired, lazy or be less dedicated....endure!!

Okay fam. I love you all tons. I hope you have a great week. I pray for you all daily. Thank you for your love and support.

Friday, January 28, 2011


Hey! How are you?! Maiteipa?! So, I'm having problems with my church email....I guess I'm officially not in the system anymore so I can't log in! How weird. I think the people in SLC think I'm home already. Not yet. So, I have permission to use my gmail account for the remainder of my mission.

Okay. Just read moms! ROBS....CONGRATS!!! I'm super super excited for you! I'll totally help you out out with your Spanish to prep you for the summer! and how cool that your "brother" will come here and we'll be able to speak Spanish with him too! Sweet!

And okay....NAT.....BYU???!!!! WOW! Congrats! You def have some big decisions to make now :) I say...go to BYU this summer.....I would like to find a job and work in we could be close! And then, once you've turned 21, after this summer you can go on a mission!!! Just my input :)

Okay. Things are going good here. Honestly, right now I can't even really remember what happened exactly throughout the week! But okay, one of the highlights was that yesterday we had a fireside with President Arnold who is the Area President...he's over Paraguay, Uruguay and Argentina. It was definitely a great opportunity to go and hear him and his wife speak! There were lots of people there. President Arnold spoke alot about topics regarding to the restoration and then told us that he wanted to tell us 3 things he would tell to his children....1. Have a testimony of God. 2. Get an education and continue to study and 3.Understand the importance of a temple marriage. It was way awesome! I was so glad we were able to go!

The weather here has been so nice this past week. Well, lots of rain...but the temperature has totally dropped. It's reminding me of CA weather or something. Love it. We haven't been using our AC as much at night and we've actually had to shower with hot water in the mornings! It's been a while since that has happened!

Okay. Our investigators are....good. At times it's hard because they just don't progress how we'd like them to! But, we do have a couple that are progressing. Angel and Magali. They both have been to church several times and just need to get baptized now! We are really trying to help them keep their commitments and understand the importance and need for baptism.

Mom asked about a couple families that I had mentioned a while back. One of the families...we aren't visiting anymore. They basically told us not to because their family is from another church, etc. However, the other family we are continuing to visit. They are was humble and awesome. The only thing is, it's hard to find them in their house! However, this past week we had an awesome appointment with them. We focused on the Atonement of Christ and how it helps us repent and fulfill our purpose here on earth. The brother was just like looking at us as we talked and it seemed to just click in his mind. We are hoping to find them in their house tonight to teach them again.

Okay. I just have to tell you this. Yesterday we went to eat lunch with Jose and Leila and their mom had made baked potatoes! It was my first baked potatoe in such a long time and I was so excited!! Funny huh! and speaking of food, for lunch today we are going to make Hna Paipa french toast. She's never had it and Hna Lewis and I were talking about it the other day!

So cute. This week we received a text from Josue, our recent convert. He invited us to an FHE he had planned in his house with some of the other youth. It made me so happy. He loves the church and the gospel and is progressing well!

So we are now inviting people that we meet to be baptized the 26th of March. It's weird.

Okay family. I love you all sooo much! Thanks for your love and continous support! I feel like so much is going on at home! Lots of good and fun things! Makes me happy.

Have a great week. The church is true. I love being a missionary and teaching the truth each day!

Me....with fresh cut bangs...did it myself!