It has been another good week in the Lord’s work. Everything is going well with finding and teaching. Those who we have been teaching already have been progressing bit by bit, and we’ve found a few more people to add to our teaching pool, including a family from Paraguay: we met them on Monday night, invited them to come to a ward activity the next day, and they came! We also went to Granada to have intercambios with the Zone leaders, Elder Krummenacher and Elder Darrington, both of whom are good friends of mine, and it went really well. We saw a lot of miracles and a lot of fruit coming forth during the intercambio. Also, speak of fruit coming forth, Juani, the other elders’ investigator, was baptized on Saturday and confirmed yesterday! I was able to act as one of the witnesses for the baptism, so that was great! All in all, it was a busy and solid week.
Many of you are aware that there was a lot of terrorist activity in Spain this week. From what I know, all of this happened in the Barcelona area, which is not a part of my mission and far away from where I live. Nothing about our missionary work was affected or changed at all by those events. My heart and my prayers sure do go out to those whom were affected by the attacks. Spain has been my home for over a year now, and it saddens me to see these things happening both here and throughout the world.
By coincidence, on Thursday afternoon, I just happened to be reading the words of President Hinckley in the general conference following the September 11, 2001 attacks. In a talk entitled, “The Times in Which We Live” (https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2001/10/the-times-in-which-we-live?lang=eng), he gave us advice on how we should live in times of terrorism and wars and insecurity:
“Let us be prayerful. Let us pray for righteousness. Let us pray for the forces of good. Let us reach out to help men and women of goodwill, whatever their religious persuasion and wherever they live. Let us stand firm against evil, both at home and abroad. Let us live worthy of the blessings of heaven, reforming our lives where necessary and looking to Him, the Father of us all. He has said, ‘Be still, and know that I am God’ (Ps. 46:10).
“Are these perilous times? They are. But there is no need to fear. We can have peace in our hearts and peace in our homes. We can be an influence for good in this world, every one of us.”
Those words are just as applicable today as they were sixteen years ago when he said them. More recently, President Monson reminded us in his talk “Kindness, Charity and Love” (https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2017/04/kindness-charity-and-love?lang=eng) to “. . .examine our lives and determine to follow the Savior’s example by being kind, loving, and charitable.”
A loving Heavenly Father has always called prophets to guide and warn his children, and that is as true today as it has been at any other time throughout history. The words that our modern-day prophets share, combined with those found of prophets of old in the scriptures, should be our guideline for how to survive these tumultuous times. Just like the hymn says, “[I] thank thee, o God, for a prophet, to guide us through these latter-days.”
Élder Stark ??
P.S. Happy 90th birthday to President Monson!
1-2: We were schooled by the Castro family in the art of making tortilla de patata last preparation day.
4: “We’re not afraid of hills either.”
6: With Elder Krummenacher and Elder Darrington during our intercambio
7: Found Superman (he’s a member)
8: Dinner with the family of Bishop and the family of Carlos
9: Until next time