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Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Email #70 (Gilbert AZ)

December 22, 2014

This week was a good one! We had our Mission Christmas party and it was a blast!!! We let off a balloon with a little light on it for each person baptized this past year:)

Can't wait to skype with you in three days!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Hermana Lattin

 Oh...and this picture is me with a rusty machete.....#fierce

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Email #69 (Gilbert, AZ)

December 15, 2014

Hola hola holllla!
Sounds like this week was a pretty good one at the Lattin home! I'm glad you're getting into the Christmas spirit!
Life in Gilbert is wonderful. This week had to be one of the crowning moments of my mission, so much felicidad packed into one weekend. We had our mission tour with Elder Packer and then Vanessa's baptism later that night, then the Carrillo's sealing on Saturday and Valeria's baptism later that night:) And then on top of all of that I was able to be reunited some of my very best mission companions in the whole world, Chavs, Lana and Mama Bear (Sister Baria) all came back for the sealing and baptism!!! It was the best!
Vanessa's baptism is a moment I will never ever forget. Her journey to enter the waters of baptism is a story I will be telling for the rest of my life. She is amazing. After she was baptized we were in the bathroom while she was doing her makeup and we asked her how she felt. She said "Amazing". And then she stopped and just kept nodding her head, then she looked at us and with tear-filled eyes she said "I feel really good". I am so grateful that she took that step, that she demonstrated her faith and gave her heart to Heavenly Father. She is a shining example to me of how precious the Atonement of Jesus Christ is. I am convinced that the ONLY thing that could pull her out of where she was, physically, mentally and spiritually, was the changing and healing power of the Atonement. And she embraced that power fully in her life and allowed it to give her a second chance, to help her to start over and become completely clean of her past. As I've been on a mission, I've had the opportunity to see the Atonement change lives, the lives of investigators, the lives of my companions, and my own life. I know that Jesus Christ lives and that he really did suffer for all of our sins, pains and afflictions, just like Alma 7:11-13 says. Vanessa entering the waters of baptism and receiving the Holy Ghost reaffirmed that to me and I am so grateful that I was able to witness this miracle.
And Valeria's baptism was so so sweet! She is such an amazing, smart and all around awesome person. The Flores family is a special family. Daniel and Renata were taught by Hna Chavarri and Bukoskie and were baptized in June of this past year. At the time Valeria wasn't sure if she wanted to be baptized, so she decided to wait. The sisters kept on teaching her, but she just didn't feel ready. Then (kind of out of the blue), about 2 and a half weeks ago she decided she was ready! She was really excited to be baptized by her dad and it was such a tender moment to see him baptize her. He was pretty emotional afterwards. They are an amazing family.
Here are the answers to your preguntas, mamita!
1. answered above:)
2. No, Tim couldn't go to the baptisms, because he had work BUT he did have work off on Sunday and stayed at church for all three hours!!!:) And get this, we weren't able to be there until the very end and he still went and stayed for the whole thing. It's amazing to see how the Lord is helping him slowly but surely recognize the Spirit and the truth. We have a lesson with him this Wednesday, we'll let you know how it goes and how he's feeling about his baptism on January 3rd!:)
3. The tours at the Mesa Temple Christmas Lights are so fun!! We basically walk around and talk to as many people as possible. There are quite a few  Hispanics who come so we get to speak A LOT of Spanish:) They are short on Spanish sisters in that mission, so we are happy we get to help!

Okay, well I love you all so so so soooo much! Thank you for all your prayers, I can feel them lifting me up and making miracles happen over here in good ol' Gilbert! Have an amazing week!
Hermana Lattin
Vanessa's Baptism!

Lots of support from old companions!

Valeria's Baptism

December 13, 2014


Carillo's temple sealing!

Friday, December 12, 2014

Email #68 (Gilbert, AZ)

December 8, 2014

Hey there fam!!!!
Isn't the Christmas season just the best? I am loving the "He is the Gift" Initiative, it's such an amazing tool, not to mention an awesome video that brings the Spirit and reminds us why we really celebrate Christmas.
Any miracles with sharing "He is the Gift" with your friends?? I want to hear them! And if you haven't had any experiences yet, keep trying!:)

So this week was crazy, in a good way. We taught a ton and are frantically trying to help two very amazing people be prepared for baptism this weekend. Vanessa is getting baptized this Friday the 12th!!! Man she is one of those people I am going to be talking about and sharing her story for the rest of my life. Her example of faith and total surrender to the Lord is an example we all need to look towards. She is SO excited for her baptism and so ready to make those promises with God. Vanessa has changed my life. Every time we meet with her I am in awe of the way the Atonement of Jesus Christ is able to infinitely heal, change and save us. She has made drastic changes in her life in the past 2 weeks and is doing everything she possibly can to allow God to change her life and that in turn is allowing her to become who her Heavenly Father wants her to become. She radiates the light of Christ wherever she goes. I can't even imagine how bright it will be after her baptism!! Her baptism will be one of the BEST days of my mission! I feel so blessed to be a tiny sliver of a part of her journey to baptism (and beyond:)), and I am so grateful to have her shining example of faith and strength in my life. She was able to meet President Nattress this past week (he came to a lesson with us) and he was so amazed and inspired by her faith. (P.S. President Nattress is the BEST!!!)
Also, we were able to teach Valeria and she committed to be baptized this Saturday as well! When we asked her why she wants to be baptized and she replied "Well, I want to be with my family forever." She is so cute and we are so excited for her to be baptized. The Flores family is one of my favorite families I've met out here. It will be a great day when they are sealed in the temple for time and all eternity a year from Valeria's baptism!

We also found a new investigator this week from our YSA ward! His name is Rafael, he's 19 and guess what... he's from Brazil!!:) haha gotta love those Brazilians! Vai Brasil! He was invited by a friend to go to a ward party and he went and met some elders there. They texted us about him and we went and saw him that night. He was very open and willing to learn, and even said yes to a soft commit to baptism! It was awesome. He didn't show up at church yesterday but we have a lesson with him tomorrow.
This past week was a week of milagros and we look forward to another one. Heavenly Father is blessing us so much, and honestly I can't even fathom why! Of course we are working hard and being obedient, but that's what I've been doing for my whole mission! God is so good and I'm so grateful for these miracles. I'm not going to lie though, training is stressful and HARD! Sister Haycock is so awesome but it's just hard teaching a new missionary how to be a missionary and teach her Spanish and be in charge of the area and worry about all your investigators, recent converts, less actives and members that all need to be visited.... I just pray that Heavenly Father can work through my weaknesses and what I lack in organizational skills and leadership skills! I am learning and growing a lot, and I know that Heavenly Father is giving me a chance to see all my weaknesses and faults through this experience so he can make those weaknesses become strong:) Ether 12:27! Mission life is great!
And Mom, my companions name is Hermana HAYCOCK... not Hunsaker:) hahaha
I love you so so so so soooooo much!!! Thank you for your fasting, prayers and support. I seriously have the best fam in the world.
Have a great week!
Hermana Lattina

Vanessa is getting baptized~December 12th

My new companion~Hermana Haycock

I love being a missionary

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Email #67 (Gilbert, AZ)

December 1, 2014

Hey there familia!!!
Wow, looks like you had a blast in good ol' Weiser!! Gotta love the family:) I can't wait to have dumplings again someday! Those are my fav!
So this week was a crazy one!!!! SO MANY MIRACLES! I think its Sister Haycock's greenie fire that's making all this happen! I guess I first better start out by introducing my companion. Her name is Hermana Riley Haycock and she is from Santa Clarita, CA. She is awesome and so excited to be here! It's a crazy weird experience training a brand new missionary, it's really fun but stressful! I feel like there is so much to teach her in the next 2 transfers and not enough time. She'll be fine though. I just hope I'm doing enough! Teaching her Spanish has been pretty rough haha. I forgot how hard it was at first, you just have no idea what's going on and you don't know how to respond to anybody! It's hard to watch your companion have those issues, because they know so little that it's a struggle to try and fill them in on everything and let them try and express themselves in a language they can't speak yet! Now I understand at least a little portion of what Chavs felt while training me haha it's a good experience for me and I'm learning. I really have to try hard to be organized, obviously it's not something that comes naturally for me. But I need to be able to do it because otherwise nothing gets done! I know Heavenly Father is helping me so much, because somehow we are getting everything done.
BUT GUESS WHAT??? Un milagro paso!! Vanessa moved in with the Maynez family and she is on date to be baptized the 13th of December!!!! She is so solid and she is living in a place and environment where nothing is keeping her from finally getting baptized. Pray for her!!! I still can't believe that actually happened! God is so good. When we got a text from Hermana Maynez telling us she had moved in and she wanted us to come teach her that night (this was Saturday) I almost cried I was so happy! She is amazing!
Also, Tim is on date for the 3rd of January! Pray that he can continue to be solid and be searching for answers. Also, he needs the courage to ask for Sundays off this week so he can start coming consistently!

Anyways, this week was definitely a week of miracles and I know that they'll continue to come through our obedience and diligence!!:)
Love you all!
Hermana Lattin

Email #66 (Gilbert, AZ)

November 17, 2014

Hellllooooo to everyone who is currently in Weiser for Thanksgiving!!! That's a party. Weiser is a great place, even though it smells like onions and cow poop:) Every time we go to the Lecheria and it smells, I think of good ol' Weiser. Just kidding, the Lecheria is wayyyy worse than Weiser. I really do miss Weiser. But I mostly miss all my family because they're the best, especially around the holiday season!
Speaking of Thanksgiving, holy cow! How is it already Thanksgiving week?? So strange. And how are my companions already going home??? What the weird. It's a sad thing to have to say good bye to two of my best friends, they've made this past transfer so great. We've seen so many miracles despite the craziness of our area, and my face and stomach hurt most of the time from laughing so much. I love my Chavs and Lana! With them prepping to leave and packing, we had a pretty crazy week, because everybody and they're dog wanted to feed us... I'm not kidding when I say we had more than one night of double dinners... hahaha but that just goes to show that the members here are great, and it was also such an awesome thing to witness and experience the love they have for my two companions. Each companion that I've said goodbye to, or am going to say goodbye to this past transfer, (Carvalho, Chavarri and Woolstenhulme) mean so much to me, they have become my best friends and have impacted my life in the best way possible. They are the most stellar missionaries I've met and I feel extremely blessed to have had them as my companions.
Anyways, the big news for today is that I am training! Una misionera verde is coming from the CCM en Mexico and I get to be her trainer! Crazy, huh? I am really excited! I just hope I can be as great as my trainer was for me. Something that really scares me is that I won't be able to be the trainer this new missionary needs in order to learn all she needs to learn before I go, because she'll definitely need to train pretty soon after I leave with several new Spanish missionaries coming in next year after February. But I was studying our monthly study topic this morning, which is the gift of the Atonement: The Savior's Love, and I asked myself "How will the Savior's love help me be a good trainer?" And obviously there are a lot of different answers to that question, but one that hit me at the end of personal study was the fact that because of the Atonement, the Savior's love can and will make up for my faults and weaknesses, as long as I hand my heart over to him. Maybe I alone cannot give my greenie everything she needs to be ready. Maybe I alone cannot teach her Spanish perfectly. Maybe I alone cannot train her in an area I hardly know myself, visiting all the people that need help in growing closer to Christ. But because of the Atonement of Jesus Christ and His love for me, I am NEVER alone. He will be with me as I help this new missionary start her mission off right and because of Him, my trainee will learn and do everything she needs to become who Heavenly Father wants her to be. And because of that, I am strangely peaceful about everything that is going to happen within the next week, (my companions leaving, getting a new missionary and the area being split up differently). I just know that everything and everyone is going to be okay:)
So this past week was great! We saw quite a few miracles within our own area, especially with Darren, the newer Chinese investigator. He just gets it. I don't know how else to say it, because he really does. Despite his background in a non-religious community and a slight language barrier, he has one of the most sincere desires I've ever seen to grow closer to God. We taught him about Jesus Christ and the Atonement this past week, and the Spirit was able to touch his heart and testify to him that he has a Savior that will help him become clean and become better. He is very sensitive to his feelings and recognizes the Spirit even though he doesn't quite understand the concept of the Godhead yet (we'll get on that this week:)). One of the most spiritual moments of my mission was when he said the sweetest prayer after our lesson and asked Heavenly Father several times to help him be closer to God and to be better. He is awesome: ) And then we were able to witness a miracle at the Montero's baptism. The elders in the Branch have been teaching this family for the last 2ish months and all of them wanted to be baptized, except for the dad. He was apprehensive and wasn't sure if he wanted to make the commitment. So the mom and their two kids prepared for baptism, and he still remained unsure, until the night of the baptism, 5 minutes before he decided he wanted to be baptized with his family. Another missionary was there to interview him, he passed and they all were baptized together!! It was so amazing.
 Okay well I love you all sooooooo much! Have an amazing Thanksgiving week in Weiser! Tell everyone I say "HOLA!!":)
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Lattin