Quote of the week:

"The Lord doesn't call the qualified, He qualifies the called"

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Week 56, Las Delicias, Rosario, Argentina

Baptism last saturday for Alejandra and Milagros

Alejandra is 23 years old and Milagros is 10

The lady on the left got baptized on Saturday in Santa Fe.
(She cried when I left. Mom and Dad we're going to visit them when you come pick me up!!!)


First off... Thank you everybody for the testimony book! That was so great. I loved reading all your testimonies and they really helped mine grow! GRACIAS!

So Alejandra and Milagros got baptized! WOOHOO! They had a great experience. The baptismal service went smooth after everyone showed up. Elder Haderlie baptized Alejandra and I baptized Milagros. The water was all nice and toasty, so it was nice. (I really miss going in the jacuzzi by the way. 11 months! Haha) After the baptism we went to their house and ate empanadas with them. They said they felt really great and super clean. On Sunday after they were confirmed Alejandra just started balling because she felt a huge burden lifted off of her shoulders. The ward is great and really supporting them in everything!

I was so happy to hear that the Perry family got baptized! HOW GREAT!! You guys need to do something for them! I cracked up when Dad told me that he got ahead of himself in sacrament meeting because he was so excited for them to get confirmed. haha I love baptisms!

This week was a really special week because on Thurs night Elder Smith called me and said that a lady that we were teaching in Santa Fe was getting baptized on Saturday too. I screamed and almost cried like a little girl. I really got to love them right before I left Santa Fe. They’re so awesome and I can’t wait to go back with you guys and see them. I already wrote them a letter. :) It was just a perfect Saturday to get baptized right? :)

Also this week we had Zone conference. We usually hear different workshops from the assistants and President but this time we were asked to give a workshop too! AHH! We were kind of nervous but it went really great. We spoke on the Book of Mormon in the conversion of a person. We talked about how the Book of Mormon is touchable proof that the true church has been restored. read + pray = answer. Simple concept, but a lot of times we forget the power that’s in the Book of Mormon. It’s the only thing we do! INVITE! I know that any person that WANTS to know, will come to know that the Book of Mormon is true, and not something made up by a man. I know that it was written thousands of years ago and brought forth right now to show to the world that God hasn’t changed and still talks to men through prophets. I know God loves us and has restored His truths. The invitation in the Book of Mormon says.

"We invite all men everywhere to read the Book of Mormon, to ponder in their hearts the message it contains, and then to ask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ if the book is true. Those who pursue this course and ask in faith will gain a testimony of its truth and divinity by the power of the Holy Ghost. (See Moroni 10:3–5.)Those who gain this divine witness from the Holy Spirit will also come to know by the same power that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world, that Joseph Smith is his revelator and prophet in these last days, and that The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Lord’s kingdom once again established on the earth, preparatory to the second coming of the Messiah."



P.S. Congrats Lexi on your mission call!!! That's soooo cool!!!

Monday, August 20, 2012

Week 55, Las Delicias, Rosario, Argentina

Elder Hjelmstad eating some yummy treats!!!

I believe they are making homemade ñoquis. This is Josh's favorite dish! He likes it with a tomato puree and chicken. He told me today to practice making it, so when he comes home we can have them!!! lol

Here are some fun facts I found online about them:
Argentinos eat gnocchi together on the 29th of every month, and it's a national holiday.
Excuse me while I swoon. 
Yes, that's right--people all over the country get together on the same day every month just to eat gnocchi.  Now, that's s my idea of a national holiday! I didn't grow up with any sort of food traditions that are celebrated like this on a national level.  But in Argentina, the tradition is that on the 29th day of each and every month, one is supposed to eat gnocchi.  Okay, twist my arm... 
Argentinos  are fond of the expression 'a full belly, a happy heart,' and on the 29th they prepare Ñoquis (as they spell it) at home and invite friends over to share the meal; it's also quite common to find ñoquis on the menu in restaurants on this day.  Either way, diners end up both full and happy.
Traditionally, money is placed under the plate to attract prosperity.  The money is kept by the diner as a good luck charm, is left for the hostess to pay for the gnocchi for the following month, or can be given to a member of the party who is in need.
There are a number of stories about how this tradition got started.  Italian immigrants (whose descendants make up about 50 percent of Argentina's population) may have brought this tradition with them. Some say that an Italian saint named San Pantaleon, one of the patron saints of Venice, was canonized on the 29th, each month this day is celebrated as his feast day. 
Some say it was a group of housewives in the 1970s that finally made the tradition widespread, a way to celebrate an otherwise dreary time of the month for most households-the last days of the month before payday, when the money had run out.  (I particularly like this idea, since Housewife is my day job.)
(- Courtesy of "Argentina with Love" Blog)
Cute Little Argentine kids!!!  I know Josh loves little kids, so I'm sure those big dark eyes just melt his heart!!!

(Not sure who this family is in this picture are but I'll be sure to ask him next week.)

Another week flew by! This next week is going to go by even faster.

Yesterday FOUR people came to church! We were super excited that they came.

Alejandra and MIlagros are all set and ready for their baptism on Saturday! They’re so ready! Alejandra is a great lady. She messed up and had a child when she was 21 years old but has truly repented and is super, duper excited to get baptized. We had a lesson with her and she just poured everything out and was crying and after she said she felt way better. They will get baptized on Saturday at 5:30pm! Pray for them!  

This week we saw some more miracles!

On Friday, it was pouring rain and we still went out. We had an appointment with Rodrigo at 11:00am and when we went by his house he was still sleeping, so he told us to come back at 12:00. So when we went back at 12:00 his buddy Maxi (We had taught him once before) was there and they were already reading the Book of Mormon together. (Not normal. ha) We sat down and started reading the Book of Mormon too and then from nowhere Maxi said, "You know what? Last night, I prayed to God and asked Him to show me the true way. I don’t know why, but I felt like I needed to come to Rodrigos house and now I feel really good." We explained how God answers prayers and he said that he believes it to be an answer from God. We kept reading and then at the end he expressed how he felt and said that he didn’t feel confused and was really interested in reading more. I really know that God answers prayers. He answers mine! He answers Moms too because I’m still alive. :) haha jk but really, I know that God has a truth, and as missionaries we help people try it out, like trying a cake. I believe and know that God loves us so much that He doesn’t want us to be confused. He has a truth. And I know that I am a representative of that truth. Anyone can know for himself or herself. We don’t have secrets, and neither does God. His church has been restored and the Book of Mormon is the proof of that restoration.  

I love you all so much! Thanks for your support!

Elder Hjelmstad

Monday, August 13, 2012

Week 54, Las Delicias, Rosario, Argentina

Recently, Josh's mission presidents wife started a facebook page for his mission. I was able to find a few pictures that I thought I would share. Some of these pictures are from when he was in his first area. enjoy...

The missionaries do a lot of service while they are serving their two year missions.  

The Rosario Argentina Mission Home:
this is where the missionaries first come when they arrive in Rosario.
They return at different times for special meetings, etc.

The Mission President and his wife

Elder Hjelmstad is on the far left, in the back
(probably on his tippie toes)!!!

This week was good! We did some divisions and I really learned a lot and have seen some progress in myself. I use to get really nervous when inviting somebody to do something but lately we’ve just been so excited and doing it so much that I’m not scared at all! I’ve really learned to teach when it’s the time to teach and invite when its the time to invite! 

Yesterday at church Alejandra and Milagros showed up and they were wayyy excited to be there! They’re officially our favorite. Milagros’ sister Maitena is 5 and the cutest little girl ever. She drew something... (Still trying to figure out what it is). haha But they’re pretty excited to be baptized on the 25th! We’re so stoked for them! Also, a less active guy that wants to change, came to church! He was way nervous but left smiling from ear to ear. The whole ward is really great at helping people feel comfortable and loved. We need more of that in California! I feel like I could’ve done a lot better at bringing friends to activities and helping those that came to church with the missionaries. I learned a sweet concept this week... Usually, members think that the missionaries are the ones who do the missionary work and that they should help the missionaries with their investigators. It’s not like that at all. The missionaries should help the ward with their friends! Help the Perry family with their conversion! It’s so important!

Cool moment this week was when I did divisions with Elder Hixson, from Springville. He’s a great missionary! We had a sweet appointment with a 15 year old named Cesar. Elder Hixson told me he didn’t believe in God and I said that we were going to show him that he actually did believe in God but didn’t know it. We had the plan to just ask inspired questions. We started out with questions like what do you like about the church and how do you feel...etc. He said he felt good and tranquil when he went and then we read some scriptures about receiving answers from God and how they come as feelings. He pondered but still didn’t believe that that peace he felt came from God. He then opened up and asked up if we believed in the devil and we said yes and explained how that there’s two sides to everything because if we didn’t, nobody would learn. We said that in every single decision there are 2 options, God or Satan. He said that he didn’t believe in either and asked where he was in it then? We explained that if it isn’t God... its the other. After a moment of silence, we asked, Do you believe in a God and a Devil, then before really thinking he said Yes. MIRACLE. We then went on the talk about baptism. He’s getting baptized this Saturday. I love being a missionary!

Funniest thing this week was last night with Rodrigo. This guy is a 21 year old character. Soooo funny, just being how he is. He tried to speak some English and said a bad word and we started busting up laughing and then we played a game to choose who prayed. In the game you have to say a type of metal and whoever says ORO (gold) has the say the prayer. Oro also means "I pray" so we played and of course he lost. haha He was like naahhhh you tricked me! hahah and we started cracking up and he didn’t want to say the prayer and so Elder Haderlie tried but we just kept laughing. My cheeks and abs were killing me we were laughing so much. soooo funny.

I love you guys!!
Elder Hjelmstad

Monday, August 6, 2012

Week 53, Las Delicias, Rosario, Argentina

Mission Council
Alrighttyyyy… the Olympics are driving me crazy! GO USA! I keep asking everybody if they’ve seen water polo and so far NOBODY has. ugh. 

But anyways this week was great! We saw some more miracles and we are still super excited for our investigators! We got let down on Sunday when only Milagros came but she loved it! Her whole family came so it was just great. You’re probably wondering what the miracles were.

1. We were walking and a lady walks across the street to us and asks where the church is. We tell her and she says she’s going to go on Sunday. She didn’t come but were going to pass by her house now!

2. Rodrigo, our super excited investigator that’s almost TOO excited to get baptized invited his friend and girlfriend over because his friend was way interested. Turns out they’re named Cristian and Antonella (I want to name my daughter Antonella) and they’re super great! We’re really looking forward to teaching them! 

This week we made a plan of action for our zone because the truth is is that were not working very diligently and effectively. We have a LOT to improve. We’ve seen a lot of progress in our area just from having excitement! President Monson said, “Missionary work is hard work. Missionary service is demanding and requires long hours of study and preparation that the missionary himself might match the divine message he proclaims. It is a labor of love but also of sacrifice and devotion to duty.” This is something that is required of everybody! We must learn and develop! We are the means by which people can have more happiness right now and for eternity. I’m so grateful for you and everyone else. We need to have FAITH and NEVER let ourselves get discouraged. We all have an important part in this. Share the gospel! You’ll never regret it!

Elder Hjelmstad

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Week 52!!! (That's ONE YEAR!!!), Las Delicias, Rosario, Argentina

a cake I made from scrattchhhh. yeaahhhhhhhhhh turned out good. That’s coconut on top. :)
there’s even casinos in Argentina haha (it’s in my area)

shoes after one year... (and I have two pair)


Elder Haderlie and I are working really hard and were finding a ton of people that are so great! This week has been FILLED with miracles and I don’t even know where to start. Maybe I should start with our new friend, Milagros, because his name means Miracles! We received a reference from a member of a family that got baptized a long while back that lived like 5 blocks from their house. We went... nobody. Then we went back on Sat... nobody. Then we went back like an hour later and....a girl answers the door and was super happy and almost kissed Elder Haderlie on the cheek. It was awkward but we got talking to her at her door and her name is Alejandra. She said her sister and parents got baptized over 10 years ago and that they were getting back around lunchtime. We asked if we could come back after lunch and share something with them. She said sure and so after lunch we went and they received us with open arms. They’re SUPER nice and loved going to church but stopped because the other Elders left and lost contact with the church. Rufina, the mom, lives with her husband and two daughters, Sandra (member 30 years old) and Alejandra (nonmember 23 years old). Sandra has two daughters, Milagros-10, and Maitena-5. Alejandra has a 2-year-old boy named Ticiano. They had only good things to say about the church and we invited them to come to church. We invited Alejandra and Milagros to be baptized on the 25th of August and they accepted! soooo on Sunday... THEY ALL CAME TO CHURCH! Woohoo! I will keep you updated!

Then we have Rodrigo, a hilarious 21 year old that is kind of an air head but smart at the same time. Finding him was a miracle! But we talked to his Dad that had been to Vegas and stuff and then we shared a little lesson and Rodrigo was way interested. We went back on Monday with our ward mission leader and taught about the restoration of the gospel. We promised him that if he read and prayed, that he’d receive an answer from God. It was such a great lesson! Anyways, we went back on Wednesday and we asked him if he read and prayed and he said YES! And that he knew it was true! ahhhhhhhhhhh! We went back last night and read from the Book of Mormon and talked about some things. After, he asked us if we knew how to play an instrument and we said we played the piano a little bit and he said SING SOMETHING AND I’LL FILM YOU! ahaha so I played praise to the man and we sang the first verse. Haha, that guy. 

I love being a missionary and love having Elder Haderlie as my companion. We’re working hard and the Lord is blessing us! I know that this church is true and that God knows the desires of our hearts. I know He loves us! I know that whoever reads, ponders, and prays with real intention, WILL receive an answer from God. I’m so thankful for the many blessings that I have received and the blessing that I may receive if I’m worthy of them. We’re progressing a lot and I hope that the zone can feed off of our excitement.


Elder Hjelmstad

Shout Outs:

Jen- Have fun at hair school!!
Dad- You’re a bachelor for a week! Watch some Olympics for me!
Mom and Jade- Soak up that Utah sun!
Grandpa- Thanks for the advice! love ya!
J&A: Have fun in Georgia!!!

Elder Haderlie describes his new companion, Elder Hjelmstad

(Josh's Mom) I found that Josh's new companion also has a  blog online.  I read his first blog entry after being placed as Josh's new companion... It was titled "So my comp is from temecula cali" of course I had to read on...this is what he wrote (Sorry, I had to share):

"So my comp is from Temecula Cali. He’s great. Big kid, like as tall as me BUT not super skinny. He’s buff. He played water polo in high school and went to BYU for a bit. They don’t have a team there just a club. I thought of Uncle Ryan when he talked about water polo. He absolutely loves it. He also loves his mission, way excited kid and we are super excited to be together and work. He has 3 sisters just like me, but he is the second child. He is a way cool guy so far and has a real desire to do the stuff. We are gonna kill it again here, may not be this first transfer but we are going to do all that we can so that it is."

And this is what he said this week:

"My comp and I get along great, we have true desires to work and we have found amazing people these last few days."