Email 3/10/16

Hello everybody,

I hope that all of you have had a good start to the month and that all is going well with your school, work, missions, or whatever else you might be doing.

Today is already the first day of my third transfer in the mission field. For a lot of reasons, these past few weeks have been difficult and discouraging and very trying on my patience, so I hope and pray that perhaps things will improve during these coming six weeks. At the time that I’m writing this on Monday morning, we still haven’t received our transfer calls, so I don’t yet know if I’ll be leaving Elche, who my new companion will be, etc., but I’ll wait to send out this email until I know. 

Anyway, the significance of the third transfer is that means I am no longer technically in training. The mission has really been something that I’ve been preparing for all of my life, but I’ve been in formal training for pretty much this entire year: first was my mission prep class at BYU, then my six weeks of training in the Madrid CCM, and the first twelve weeks in the mission field. But, just because I’m not “in training” doesn’t mean that I’m done learning and that now I know everything I need to. Not at all. So, I am looking forwards for the opportunity to keep learning and keep growing, to keep trying to become a better disciple of Christ, to keep developing into a more consecrated missionary, to keep improving my language and teaching skills, and so on.

I was so grateful for the opportunity to listen to the divinely inspired words from General Conference this past weekend. I feel as though the opportunity to hear guidance and counsel from living prophets and apostles of Jesus Christ has taken on a whole new significance and meaning for me. We are so blessed to live not only at a time when the original church of Jesus Christ and the associated authority has been restored to the earth, but that we have the opportunity to so easily and readily access these things through modern technology. I’m grateful that I have the ability over the next weeks and months to go back, review the talks that were given, and work to better implement the principles taught from them into my missionary work and life.

Okay, I’m writing this in the afternoon. I am indeed staying in Elche for at least one more transfer. My new companion is going to be an Elder Catmull. I actually found out before the transfer calls came. Some of you will remember that Elder Krummenacher was my companion in the CCM. He emailed me this morning, talking about how much he likes my new companion, but he never said his name haha, so it took a while to figure that out. But I’ll have more on this next week.

Love you all,

Élder Stark 🇪🇸

Photos

1: We had a baptism last week! Okay, not quite, just an 8 year old in the ward being baptized, but his parents had us come over and teach him about the importance of baptism, so that counts for something, right?

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2: We went to a Viking exhibit during p-day last week, but in reality, it was just a bunch of old pots.

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3: Enjoying the cool, fresh weather of the Mediterranean coast

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4: The “Elche Zone” during our p-day last week

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5: Celebrating Elder Goates’ one year mark in the field; Hermana Giraldo, Elder Stark, Elder Darrington, Elder Llavina, Hermana Prior, Hermana Butler, Hermana Gentry; Elder Pesce, Elder Goates, Elder Fumero

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6: Our General Conference setup. We had the opportunity to watch it in English, thankfully. We watched the Saturday Morning Session live (which was at 6 PM here haha), then we watched the Priesthood and Saturday Afternoon sessions on Sunday in addition to the Sunday Morning Session live too. I have yet to watch the Sunday afternoon session.

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7: Until next time

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