Email 20/2/17

Hello everybody, 

It has been a good week. A lot of time was spent in the streets trying to find new investigators. We had an interesting experience with a backpacker from the Czech Republic. We walked up to him, and introduced ourselves (in Spanish) as missionaries from The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and then invited him to hear a message about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. His response to our invitation was a question (in English): “Well, what would you be talking about if you weren’t talking about the message?” That kind of caught me off guard, so I just said in response, “Nothing I guess.” I then asked him how many languages he spoke (since our conversation was switching between English and Spanish) and he said, “the number of languages a man speaks is what the man is,” which doesn’t really make sense, haha, but I really liked that first question he asked us. It strengthened my conviction that the whole point of me being here in Spain and learning Spanish for two years is to share the message that, “through a modern prophet, God has restored knowledge about the plan of salvation, which is centered on Christ’s Atonement and fulfilled by living the first principles and ordinances of the gospel.” If I weren’t sharing that, I guess there would be nothing to talk about. I know that this is true and it is such a wonderful blessing to bring people to have their own testimony of this.

We spent a lot of the week working on finding, and well that will definitely be what we’ll keep doing this week as well. Thursday and Friday were fun days though. Thursday, we went to Málaga to have our interviews with President Andersen, got to go eat at Taco Bell, and then spent the night in the piso of the Zone leaders there, Elder Boston and Elder Dunham, which was really cool because they had both been Zone leaders for me at different points earlier in the mission. On Friday, we had our Zone Conference. It was focused on the second fundamental from The First 12 Weeks, “The Role of the Spirit in Conversion.” In preparation for this conference, I had been studying a lot about this topic and identified five things I can do every day in order to better have the presence of the spirit in my life which in turn helps those we teach feel the spirit confirming to them the truthfulness of the message. They are to study the word (D&C 11:21), be obediente (D&C 121:37), pray for the guidance of the spirit (D&C 42:14), follow the promptings of the spirit and act on them (D&C 33:8-10), and give thanks for the promptings that have been received (D&C 78:19). Having the guidance of the spirit (the “senior companion”) is so necessary in missionary work.

Everything is going great in Motril. I love our little branch. Yesterday, in church, we even had a few visitors from other parts of Spain. I was responsible for playing the piano in sacrament meeting, giving a 20 minute talk, and then two minutes before priesthood meeting started, I was asked to teach the lesson. That was fun haha, but I don’t think that the Sabbath doesn’t get any better than that, when you can spend the day teaching and serving other people.

Love,

Élder Stark 🇪🇸

Photos

1: This was a pretty guapa week for Motril. After a rainstorm, outside of Mercadona.

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2: Sunset in the center of town.

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3: Abandoned factory

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4: Church on the hill

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5: Fountain and palm

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6: Church dating back to the 1500’s

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7: Edge of town

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8: Ferris wheel in Málaga 

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9: A very tired Elder Pack and I; we match our ties.

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10: Until next time.

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