Rachael's Mission

Mexico Torreon Mission October 2015 - April 2017

Rachael's Picture

Rachael's Picture

Sunday, January 31, 2016

Week 16

Hermana Lutze,

I hope you've had a good week. We've had some highs and lows... Hannah officially received word that she passed the CNA exams and is enjoying her job at Ashford. Natalie's hair highlights and cut look really cute on her. She donated her hair and fifty dollars to the Locks of Love. Jakob is enjoying basketball. His team won in double OT on Friday night. The girls and I along with Marissa met the Weights up at the Ice Castles in Midway Friday night. We had a fun time crawling in tunnels, scooting sideways through slot canyons and sliding down the ice slide. Natalie and Hannah along with Ben and Caleb went with Cami to the Draper temple for the first time on Saturday to do baptisms. We then all went together-Weights, Millers, Lutzes, and Papa to the Provo City Temple Open House. It is beautiful and they've really kept it according to its original time period in the furnishings and design. (We'll have to go together when you return from your mission.) We ate at Zaxby's prior to the temple and then had some ice cream at the Creamery on Ninth afterwards. Sadly, they were out of Graham Canyon! While there we received word that Kyle has come home from his mission. Marissa is really struggling right now with that news. Kyle was actually going to stick it out longer but the mission president after speaking with the mental health nurse about Kyle decided that Kyle needed to come home. He was released with a medical release. Please pray for their family right now. They could all use your prayers during this hard time.

I've thought a great deal this week about the peace the Savior brings to each of us and the importance of keeping our lives centered on the Savior. In Matthew 14 when Peter sees the Lord walking on water and hears the Lord say, "Be of good cheer; it is I ; be not afraid." It is then that Peter decides he wants to walk to him and the Savior responds to him by saying "Come". The Lord knew what was about to happen but He still invited Him to come because Peter needed to learn. We don't learn unless we are 'failing forward' like you've talked about. Initially Peter did walk on water. It was not until he took his eyes off of Christ when he saw the boisterous winds that he became afraid and started to sink. Nor did Jesus fail him at this point. He stretched out his hand and grasped the drowning disciple with the gentle rebuke, "O thou of little faith, why didst thou doubt?" I know this is true... that we must stay focused on Christ by using the Atonement and strengthening our testimony of Him on a daily basis.

A few scriptures on peace...

Isaiah 26:3 "Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee." (This is so true as we have our minds stayed on Christ because we trust Him then we feel the peace that surpasses all understanding.)

Isaiah 57:20-21 "But the wicked are like the troubled sea, when it cannot rest, whose waters cast up mire and dirt. There is no peace, saith my God, to the wicked."

Peace was on the lips and in the heart of the Savior no matter how fiercely the tempest was raging! (President Howard W. Hunter)

In this world of confusion and rushing, temporal progress, we need to return to the simplicity of Christ. (President Howard W. Hunter)

It is my firm belief that if as individual people, as families, communities, and nations, we could, like Peter, fix our eyes on Jesus, we too might walk triumphantly over 'the swelling waves of disbelief' and remain 'unterrified amid the rising winds of doubt.' But if we turn away our eyes from him in whom we must believe, as it is so easy to do and the world is so much tempted to do, if we look to the power and fury of those terrible and destructive elements around us rather than to him who can help save us, then we shall inevitably sink in a sea of conflict and sorrow and despair. At such times when we feel the floods are threatening to drown us and the deep is going to swallow up the tossed vessel of our faith, I pray we may always hear amid the storm and the darkness that sweet utterance of the Savior of the World: "Be of good cheer; it is I; be not afraid. " (President Howard W. Hunter)

We love you and pray for you always!



Monday, January 25, 2016

Week 15 (Just Do It!)

Dear family and friends,

So they found my package in Monterrey? The mission office says not to use DHL. You should use Fedex or UPS. (Mom comment: Now they tell me... this has been an ongoing saga since the beginning of December. :))

And wow Mom-your letter! It has some fabulous things in it! I love it! I love the last quote.  It is so true! I never thought  about that but now that I've read it, I know its true!

Also guess what! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! DALLIN H. OAKS IS COMING TO SPEAK TO US IN PERSON!!!!! OH MY GOSH... I'M GOING TO MEET HIM IN PERSON AND THIS IS GOING TO BE SO AMAZING! I'm not going to lie! I totally prayed for this to happen and look... It's happening!

After that exciting news, my week seems rather dull in comparison.


We went to Cristo de las Noas with Hermana Pati (member) and her husband Raul (nonmember). It was a blast! So beautiful and so much fun to walk around and take pictures! This place was built to look like Jerusalem and I think they did a fairly good job. Hopefully one day I can actually visit Jerusalem! It was beautiful and I will have to send pics!


We hit the record of eight lessons in one day and had an awesome family home evening with Ana Teresa (menos activo) and Pati and all their kids! Hopefully we can baptize Pati and get Ana back to church again!


Today was the mission broadcast and it was fabulous! Or at least I think it was fabulous? It was in Spanish, so I didn´t understand all of it, but most of it. There were lots of great speakers like Russell M. Nelson, Dallin H. Oaks, and David A Bednar They mostly taught out of Preach My Gospel. Let me just say that PMG is golden! It is an amazing resource and you can basically highlight every word because every word is so important! The First Presidency and the Quorum of the Twelve spent a long time praying and scrutinizing this book so that it would be perfect for us! No one was home today so not that many lessons.


HAPPY BIRTHDAY NATALIE!! There is no way that you are 15. You are not allowed to grow while I am gone! Stop it! Well I love you and I hope you had an awesome birthday! Today was actually a lucky day. We met some really great people with lots of potential! One lady needed help so we carried her stuff to her house and taught a lesson. She lost a baby that was 4 days old. We helped her find peace by explaining where her baby is and why she came and died so quickly! It was so amazing to see the tears of comfort and relief in this mother's eyes. Hopefully, we will be able to teach her more of this gospel so she can be with her family forever! We met Diana who basically needs to get married and can be baptized! Woohoo! We taught a lesson to Gloria and her two sons who are mentally disabled! It is so amazing to see the light that these children have! They only have desires to do good and help others. They are such sweet people! I also met the devil in person today. It was just creepy and dark. Satan can get such a strong hold on people that they literally become like him and it is not a fun time to be in that presence. We need to be careful that we are not slowly dragged down to that level because Satan is very crafty and has his ways. It is possible for anyone to become like this. We need to always keep our guard up.


We reached a record of nine lessons! We had lessons with two people who I think have great potential to be baptized! The first one is Abigail. She has such amazing desires to serve God and follow the example of Jesus Christ in her life! She even wants to serve a mission for her church! Hopefully, one day, she will serve a mission for our church! We also had a lesson with Violeta. She is very open to what we have to say which is good! However her house creeps me out! There were at least 20 giant brown spiders on her ceiling! It was hard to concentrate with so many eyes focused on me at once!!! ;) The sad part of today.......Omar and Marcia dropped us, so we won't be teaching them anymore. Unfortunately we had a lesson with a member and this member said some things that scared them and so they rejected us. It is really sad because we were making such progress.


Cristal and Haile were baptized!! Yay!! Oh the joy on their faces was indescribable!  They are so happy and I hope they will continue to be happy and one day enter the temple together! I'm so excited for their futures!


Cristal and Haile were confirmed members!! It is official and complete!!  So excited for them!! That night we had a family home evening with them and Haile taught the lesson on repentance! She is nine and she did an awesome job!! We are still working on making this a habit for them! 

Well that is all I have to tell about my week. Hopefully you are all having an amazing time in Utah with the snow!

This week I have been thinking about service. How we pray for people, but do we actually go out and do something for them? This life is for living, not for sitting and wishing. We need to be aware of the needs of those around us-neighbors, members, friends, family and look for ways to help them. Whether that is yard work, sitting and talking with them, or magnifying our calling, we need to JUST DO IT! HAZLO! We need to act and not be acted upon. If you look at the attribute of diligence it says we need to actively be doing things and should not have to be asked to do them. We need to find things that need to be done and do them! If we sit and wait it will be too late for those we could have helped and also for us. God expects us to help our fellow man! He wants us to be like Christ where we go about doing good and serving others, so that we may receive great joy and learn to obtain that great love which is charity-the greatest of all gifts! For without charity we are nothing! It is not important how much we know, how spiritual or skilled we are, if we don't have charity it profiteth us nothing because these things have no purpose if we don´t us them for the benefit of others.

Well, I love you all! Talk to you next week!


Hermana Lutze

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Week 15

Hermana Lutze,

We hope you've had a good week! Before you do anything else please send me the following:

·  your passwords for both your gmail accounts so I can associate them with your phone again
·  your password to your LDS account so I can see all the tithing you paid last year to do your taxes (The end of year that I received from the ward does not have any of that listed.)
I'm glad you can be there for Hermana Rubina as she talks about her life in Peru. It sounds like you have become great friends-lifelong friends. I love keeping in touch with those I met in Argentina. They will always mean so much to me.

We loved the picture of Elder Kemp flying through the air. I'm glad to see you are learning more about the gospel like the association of faith and obedience and yet having fun! I'm glad your intercambios went well! You can do more than you think through the strengthening power of the Atonement. He always makes us more when we come unto Him...  I'm so glad you are learning too that everyone around us needs to be strengthened even those that appear to be strong need kind words from someone, a smile, a hello... whatever we feel prompted to give. And  yes Visiting Teachers are so important. I've been preaching that since I was in college!

I just wanted to share with you a couple of thoughts from our lesson today in Relief Society. It is the first lesson by President Howard W. Hunter "Jesus Christ-Our Only Way to Hope and Joy"

"What think ye of Christ?" "We must know Christ better than we know him; we must remember him more often than we remember him; we must serve him more valiantly than we serve him. Then we will drink water springing up unto eternal life and will eat the bread of life."

"He is our prize in time and in eternity. Every other prize is finally fruitless. Every other grandeur fades with time and dissolves with the elements. In the end, ...we will know no true joy save it be in Christ. May we be more devoted and disciplined followers of Christ. May we cherish him in our thoughts and speak his name with love. May we kneel before him with meekness and mercy. May we bless and serve others that they may do the same."

"In the majesty of his life and the example of his teachings, Christ gave us much counsel with secure promises always attached. Strive to build a personal testimony of Jesus Christ and the atonement. A study of the life of Christ and a testimony of his reality is something each of us should seek. As we come to understand his mission, and the atonement which he wrought, we will desire to live more like him."

"In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world." John 16:33

"If our lives and our faith are centered upon Jesus Christ and his restored gospel, nothing can ever go permanently wrong. On the other hand, if our lives are not centered on the Savior and his teachings, no other success can ever be permanently right..."

"Let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed." D&C 123:17

"You have the Savior of the world on your side. If you seek His help and follow His directions, how can you fail?" Gary E. Stevenson

I'll end with this awesome quote I was sent this week.

"Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people will not feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It is not just in some of us; it is in everyone and as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give others permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others." ~Marianne Williamson

I love you and I'm so grateful for your light that shines to me!



Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 14 (Family Psychic Powers)

Well another week down! Can you believe that I have passed my 3 month mark (well less than 2 in the actual field)!? Insane! I am a 3 month old baby missionary!  Time is wacky here. It is fast and slow, feels like 9 hours 100 hours or 2 minutes all at the same time! I can't explain it. I have strange mixed feelings. I want it to go faster and slower and have more time, all at the same time? 

Another strange thing, all the emails you guys send me talk about things we have learned this week or that I have been thinking about! So strange! Family psychic powers! ;)


So Monday one week ago, I learned about all the  trials that my compaƱera is going through and the hard decisions she is going to have to make when she goes home. Needless to say she is not that excited about going home right now. Listening to her made me even more grateful for my amazing family! I hope you guys know that we seriously live the most perfect life! A washing machine, dishwasher, clean water, hot or even warm showers, a dryer, comfy beds, warm house without giant spiders, beautiful yard-we are living a comfy life. So don't take it for granted!


We had a capacitacion (training) in the morning which was awesome! The training was on obedience and I am amazed at how interconnected obedience is with faith. Well, how everything is connected. Then we took some pictures at the end. One of them has Elder Kemp flying through the air! It was so funny! I love this Elder. He is always good for a laugh. He knows how to have fun and also be a good obedient missionary (He is our zone leader right now). I will send you the flying pictures. We also had intercambios today and it was my turn to stay in our area and plan everything! Ah! talk about nerve racking! I was so nervous! Hermana Avila came to my area and Hermana Rubina went to Torreon. It was so funny to see the faces of our investigators when I arrived without Hermana Rubina! They all thought she had left because of them. I thought I was going to crash and burn without her. Luckily the Lord heard my prayers and I did really well on my own! We had some amazing, powerful lessons tonight and could feel the spirit so strong!


Still intercambios. It was a good day. I love Hermana Avila! She is a great example and is such a great missionary! Hopefully we can have the opportunity to be companions at some point. She is especially good at contacting. I tried to learn from her and am trying now to contact EVERYONE! It is a little hard with Hermana Rubina because she always runs to our next appointment but that's OK- work in progress. Today we were introduced to an investigator, Arecelia, who is the neighbor of Hermana Dobali from the ward. She accepted to be baptized once she knows more! I am so excited for her and I have high hopes! We also met a menos activo, partial member family. Hopefully we can help them all become members!  At the end of the day we went to Torreon to retrieve my companion. It was such a good experience to be the leader for a day. I learned that I am not perfect but I can do this! I can teach with the spirit and help these people without Hermana Rubina. 


3 Month Birthday! Today we had La Comida with Hermana Zoraya. At the end of the meal we shared a scripture and gave a mini lesson. During the lesson, she cried and shared her hardships. Sometimes we forget that we are not here just for the nonmembers, but also for the members. EVERYONE needs to be strengthened continually. Never look at them and think, "No, they are fine. They have a good testimony." Always look for ways to strengthen our fellow hermanos in the church! Even the prophet has his support system with his counselors and the Quorum of the Twelve. This is also why Visiting Teachers are so important! The visiting teaching here is terrible. No one does it and this is why there are so many menos activos! They need more hermanamiento (fellow shipping)! All the scriptures say that we cannot make it alone. We need Christ and we need to be there so Christ can work through us to help others stay strong and true to the faith. 


In Stake Council we talked about the importance of the ward council. Let me testify of the truth of this. Ward councils are the foundation of everything because without a ward there is no stake and without a stake there is no area and without areas-well, there is no church. Ward councils have a huge responsibility to care for their members and to direct the missionary work. We are here to work and aid, but the ward council must direct and be the energy behind this work. They are the retention system. 


Capacitacion with Elder Reyes of the Seventy. He gave a really good talk on obedience and faith.


We had the baptismal interviews for Haile and Cristal! They are going to be baptized next Saturday! So excited for them! It is a miracle they are being baptized. We've met with Hermana Lourdes and her family to help them solve their problems and have a more united and happy family. Cristal rejected the gospel so many times and now she is getting baptized with her daughter! The Lord really does work in mysterious ways. Tonight we had another Family Home Evening with them, but this time they had to prepare it and they did such a great job! We hope to make this a habit in their home so that can continue to constantly strengthen their family.


Today, of course, I wake up, look up, and the first thing I see is a giant spider on the ceiling. Of course! Why me!? I need to find a way to get my compaƱera to kill it for me.;) Today we are going to see Cristo de las Noas! So that will be exciting! I will tell you about it next week.

This week I read a talk from Elder Bednar and he said something very profound. He said we are not in this calling because of what we have done in the past. It is not like we have earned a position. (But we still have to do good things to be ready for these callings.) He said, rather, we are in these callings because of what the Lord knows we CAN DO. He knows what we are capable of and have the capacity to achieve in these callings! So you are all in your callings for a very important reason! Please magnify your callings! Do everything in your power to invite people to Christ, invite them to partake of His gift, to bask in His light, to feel His love, to develop more faith in Him so they can accomplish everything they need to! Everyone has a part to play. It is like soccer. Every player has their part to play and it is essential that they play that part so that we can all obtain our main goal which is to return to our Heavenly Father and receive His full glory! Everyone needs to play their part. If they don't it weakens the team and can even bring others down and keep them from doing their part and giving their best effort.

I know you have heard a lot about keeping the Sabbath Day holy. Let me tell you just how crucial and hard that is here. We have so many great investigators, but because they don´t go to church we have to drop them. There are so many members that are menos activos because they simply don't take the time to go to church. There were 30,000 baptisms last year in Mexico, but church attendance stayed about the same. This should not happen! We must go to church, partake of the sacrament, and feast upon all the words of Christ. Please be strong and help others not only go to church but enjoy it so they will keep coming. If someone is missing from church, go seek them out in love and tell them how much you missed them and how you hope they will come next week. Everyone needs friends and to feel the love of Christ through you. You guys are His hands. He can´t just come down to everyone and bring them to church. That is our job to love and care and have concern for all of our fellow members! Please care for your sheep. Don´t just let them walk to the wolves. Protect them.

Speaking of sheep, the sheep here are very stubborn! They don't want to move and they don't want to listen to the voice of the Good Shepherd! So many have forgotten what His voice sounds like and when they do hear it, they often reject it. Ba Humbug! Hopefully we will find some more willing and calm sheep very soon. 

Love you all! I hope you have a fabulous week!


Hermana Lutze

Yes, we Google Earthed this picture! Rachael really does live in a castle with a witch weather vane!

Elder Kemp aka Zone Leader and the Flying Peanut

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Week 14

Hermana Lutze,

We're still in St. George today and will be heading back sometime tomorrow to the snow. It sounds like we got about a 1/2 foot while we've been down here. We just came back from a walk along the river in the sunshine. It felt so good after spending the last few months in the snow and the inversion. 

Mission life is sounding like the Battle of the Five Kingdoms... It's so hard emotionally because you love and serve the people you are teaching and you know how happy the gospel would make them even though they will still have trials and you want that for them. The dream Marcia had is an amazing gift. Hopefully, she will see it that way. You see it that way because you have a complete understanding of the gospel.

I really want to see Hna Rubina in her mariachi dress. So take a picture! :) 

Hannah has been orienting at her new job and has been accepted to BYU I, UVU, and the U of U. We, of course, are still waiting to hear from BYU. She only has 4 high school classes this year.

Natalie continues to practice her three instruments and try my patience at times. She hasn't been very happy to be down here in St. George. She really likes her time alone.

Jakob's team won all of their games but in the end the point differential wasn't in their favor so they didn't move on... Jakob's old Surf team was ahead of us by one point due to a shut out so they moved on and were beat by the Surf Premiere team. The brackets are really dumb this year. There's no Gold, Silver and Bronze division. They've just lumped all the teams together. But, hey, it was worth coming down here just to get some sunshine and warmer weather.

We've had fun visiting the Weights and are looking forward to them coming up at the end of January for the Provo City Temple Open House. The kids are all also going to go with Cami to a temple for baptisms for the first time while they are up and we hope to see the Ice Castles in Midway.

I've been struggling to get my lesson together for Stake Women's Conference but revelation is coming line upon line and precept upon precept. I've been extremely busy this week between work and my calling.I also have a RS lesson to prepare. We've been asked to teach in Relief Society for Ward Conferences.

Hermana Lutze I've really been thinking about the importance of fortifying ourselves against the adversary. We are at war with him and like it says in Joseph Smith-Matthew 1:22...insomuch, that, if possible, they shall deceive the very elect, who are the elect according to the covenant."
We are the elect and must cling to the Spirit and receive personal revelation to guide us so we will not be deceived. We do this by praying, studying the scriptures, partaking of the Sacrament, attending the temple, and following the counsel of the living prophet and apostles. 

I've also been thinking about what are my weapons of rebellion... read Alma 23:6-8. We are converted unto the Lord when we lay down our weapons of rebellion. What are your investigators' weapons of rebellion? How can you help them put their weapons down?

I love D&C 45:3-5. Christ loves us and is pleading our cause before the Father. We read, "Listen to him who is the advocate with the Father, who is pleading your cause before him-saying: Father behold the sufferings and death of him who did no sin, in whom thou wast well pleased; behold the blood of they Son which was shed, the blood of him whom thou gavest that thyself might be glorified; Wherefore, Father, spare these my brethren that believe on my name, that they may come unto me and have everlasting life."

Another favorite this week D&C 123:17 "Let us cheerfully do all things that lie in our power; and then may we stand still, with the utmost assurance, to see the salvation of God, and for his arm to be revealed." This is what a mission and life is all about. We must endure well!

I love you!



Monday, January 11, 2016

Week 13 (Are You on the Sideline or on the Field?)

Hola familia y amigos! 

You probably think I am crazy with how I describe the weather. But here it is blazing hot one day and freezing the next or the day starts out cold, heats up, and ends in the frozen zone. The weather is more temperamental here than Utah!


After I emailed we went to Centro (Torreon). While there we shopped for thermal leggings.  I thought I had entered into a den or the black market or something! The shops are all dark and obscure and there are alley ways in every direction! You could literally get lost! I'm pretty sure I could buy whatever I wanted there! It was Swiss Days on steroids mixed in with the Black Market! We found what we needed-Hermana Rubina was fitted for her Mariachi Dress to wear when she returns home (This is her last transfer. She leaves in February! Wait......people leave the mission? ;) ) Then we went to District Meeting and met the new people in our district like Elder Wilkes from the Dominican Republic. Elder Sanchez and Elder Black were moved somewhere else in Mexico. 


Well this day was amazing! We saw so many little miracles along the way! The best was when we went to visit Omar y Marcia! They are supposed to be praying for an answer as to whether they should be baptized. Marcia prayed and that night she dreamed of her 'abuelo' whom she hasn't dreamed of in a long time! It was so cool because her 'abuelo' is waiting for her to join the church so she can do the temple work for him! I really hope she realizes how special her answer is! Right now they have a baptismal date of 13 of Febrero!


Today was normal and then in the evening we had a movie night with Rosca and hot chocolate! It was fabulous! We watched 17 Miracles (LOVE that movie). And guess what!? I won the Rosca! I got the baby Jesus! But apparently that means I have to make the tamales.........ya sorry, I don't know how to make tamales so........that will have to wait! Plus there is no time!  But it was still fun to win the Baby Jesus!


Just a normal day of teaching, preaching, contacting, trying not to be clumsy and fall because there are rocks everywhere whose sole purpose in life is to trip you. ;)

Friday, Saturday, Sunday

These three days were rough. We haven´t contacted that many people, no one is home for their appointments, people reject us and tell us to come back ¨later¨ which means never and our investigators didn't come to church.

It is hard and frustrating because you love these people and want them to have this precious gift. The gift of the gospel is the greatest gift anyone could ever receive on this earth and they won't accept it! I have really had to remember this week that everyone has their agency to accept or reject these things. We cannot force them. It has been impressed upon me that there are so very few of us that are actually going to return to our Heavenly Father and receive the fullness of his glory. We need to work so very hard to obtain these things. I have been reading in the December Liahona about the new and everlasting covenant! It is fabulous! Go and read it! It talks about all that we will receive in the Celestial Kingdom and what we must do to obtain it! Heavenly Father has given us the opportunity to receive never ending happiness and to live the life that He lives with not only our beloved family but with all the other people that we love in our lives! How amazing is His plan for us!

This week I was reading in Alma 8 when Alma went to the city of Ammonihah. He was rejected and spit upon. His soul was anguished for the loss of their souls. It comforts me to know that even Alma, a prophet of God, was rejected! Many times it is not us but the hardness of their hearts because Satan has gotten a firm hold on so many of these people and is not willing to let go. I am here to simply offer this knowledge and if they reject the message it is sad. There is not much else I can do other than hopefully plant seeds so they will be future investigators. However, then an angel of the Lord came to Alma and commanded him to return and there he found Amulek and together they preached and changed the hearts of many! Miracles were performed! We need to remember that in our lives "It is after the trial of our faith that miracles are brought to pass"! He does not give us the miracles to build our faith. He gives us the trials to use our faith, to grow our faith, to show our devotion and determination and then through that effort we are able to see miracles wrought in our lives! Brothers and sisters exercise you faith! Doubt not! Remember that with Christ all things are possible! So move forward and act, trusting perfectly in the plan that Heavenly Father has for you. This plan is a plan of happiness, not only for this life, but for eternity. Do not sit idly by on the sidelines for there too you will be lost and forgotten. Only those who enter the field and thrust in their sickle and labor with all their might and bring forth fruits will be remembered. And then when we return to our Heavenly Father we can smile and rejoice because He will say to us, "Here is my beloved son/daughter in whom I am well pleased!" Always strive to do things that will please our Heavenly Father and make Him proud to have such amazing children-children that love, serve, strive to be like Christ, take action and exercise great faith so that great things may come to pass!

I love you all! Hope you are having a wonderful new year!


Hermana Lutze

P.S. If anyone has any contacting tips, that would be much appreciated!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Week 13

Hermana Lutze,

I enjoyed last week's e-mail. It's good to have emotional melt downs every once in awhile because they help us to re-look at our priorities. They help us to see if our desires and actions are congruent. I had to laugh about the goat. I had a few similar experiences on my mission and yes the Elders were much more into it than I was. I'm happy for the people of Mexico... they will get rain now that you are there. We should call you the "Rain Woman." :) We Google Earthed your address just to see if you were telling the truth about the castle and the witch weather vane. I've attached the picture. :) There's another yellow house across the street? At first I thought that was yours until I remembered your description. I liked your workshop analogy and being one of His favorite tools. I know this comes as we ask in humility and then act. We will be directed to where He needs us.

This week has, of course, been another busy one. I worked the first three days like crazy and then went to Michelle's dad's funeral on Thursday. Afterwards I did initiatories at the Mount Timpanogos Temple. I was able to get a couple of tickets to the Provo Temple Open House on Saturday, January 31st. The pictures I've seen so far are gorgeous! Dad and I planned an Anniversary trip to Logan in March. I'm going to take him to Angie's. :) We took Christmas down all day Saturday and then decided to take the Entertainment center downstairs. It looks so empty up here. We'll be getting bids soon to have one built.. It will be nice to have something different and to actually use the downstairs. Hannah got her first CNA job on Thursday. She walked in, filled out an application, interviewed, and was hired on the spot at the Ashford center across from Lone Peak High School, Natalie has been working on her guitar, organ, and piano. She is also enjoying her American Fork volunteer hours in the snack bar. It's fun to see her take an interest in the medical world. Jakob is playing soccer and basketball right now. His AF city team won their first game and his deacon team lost their first game. It's really fun to watch him play a sport other than soccer. His team is playing in President's Cup this coming weekend. Yeah, another trip to St. George. :) I'm assuming that you read the e-mail I forwarded to you about Ryan and Sharon's new baby boy. I'm so excited for them. He's so cute.

I wasn't able to attend Emily's class this week but I've been listening to it. We were in Ruth this week. It really struck me that Ruth truly had a testimony of the gospel and one of the reasons she wanted to be with Naomi is because she wanted to "stay active" in the church, not that she just loved her mother-in-law. She knew if she stayed in Moab that she might fall into inactivity. As you know this is huge for your investigators. They must have friends in the gospel to help them along the way because at some point you will go and they will stay. One of the big concepts Emily talked about in Ruth is that of full and empty Ruth 1:21, Ruth 2:11, 12, Ruth 3:17, Ruth 4:9, 15. Boaz is a type of Christ and we know that Jesus Christ descended from Ruth.  How is Christ in v. 15 a restorer and a nourisher? On another note we talked about the tree in Lehi's dream today. We talked about Kevin's Pearson's talk last April about "Staying by the Tree." We must commence, catch hold to the iron rod, press forward, and cling to the rod of iron. I think we sometimes hold on with one hand or a finger instead of clinging to the iron rod. Do we cling to our scripture study, prayer, covenants, Christ, church/temple attendance, service, etc. What does it mean to cling? To me it means holding on with both hands and not ever letting go of the fundamental practices so we will always have the Spirit with us to make correct decisions.

I love you!



Monday, January 4, 2016

Week 12 (Are You a Favorite Tool in His Workshop of Salvation?)

Well family and friends, I can't believe that a year has already passed since I e-mailed you! ;) Hopefully all of you are doing well, have set your New Year Resolutions and haven't already given up on them on day four! 


We had District meeting. On the way there, the song "Boys will be Boys" from "Three Men and a Baby" was playing on the bus radio! Of all the songs to hear in Mexico!? I took it as a tender mercy that the Lord wanted me to remember how much He loves me and is looking out for me! That song holds so many memories for me from watching this movie with my sisters! Good times! I love them so much! They are my best friends in the whole wide world!


Well, today, to say the least, my companion and I had a heart to heart melt down. We talked about what we need to do to change and be better to have more success in our area. It was good for us, but involved a lot of crying. People don't realize this, but every day here is like the Hobbit movie "Battle of the Five Kingdoms!" We are fighting with Satan, our investigators, the ward, the weather conditions, and the biggest fight is probably with OURSELVES. Every day I have this internal battle to get out of bed and go to work and to remember I really can do this. People might think I am crazy for how much I talk to myself ;). But it really is slowly getting better every day. I wouldn´t say it is easier; it is just that I am becoming accustomed to the work. We also saw a miracle today! An investigator we thought we had lost (Cristal) has had a total change of heart and is now listening and preparing for baptism! So excited for her! She has a baptismal date set for the 23rd of January! Another miracle-we had been looking for this reference in Bosque Real, but had been unable to find her home. Then, while walking in the street, this member stopped us and introduced us to the very person we were looking for! It was so cool and amazing! She is actually less active so now we have the opportunity to help reactivate her.

P. S. This day I ate these stuffed peppers. Oh my goodness they were to die for! So good. We are making them when we get home. Oh and I have carried on our family tradition of eating cake for breakfast. ;) 


Today was so interesting. It seemed like we walked around most of the day because we couldn't find anyone home. I thought that we would have 0 lessons and such for our daily numbers. However, when we counted our numbers, we were actually just as successful as the other days, if not more successful! It just goes to show that when you are truly trying, the Lord knows and makes up for the rest!


New Years Eve! Well we went to the house of the Maldonados and the first thing I see when I walk in is this dead animal that we are going to eat staring at me! Turns out it was a goat. They cooked the goat and then ate LITERALLY EVERYTHING! I tried some intestine, heart, and liver. The Elders on the other hand ate the intestines, heart, liver, kidneys, tail, brain, eyes, tongue! Everything! I am not going to lie.......I was a bit grossed out. Not a huge fan. I liked that stuff better when I didn't see the poor face staring at me pleading with me to save it! We also had an epic game of UNO and finished the night with some sparkling cider!


New Years! Well it rained all day but we still had our Actividad Deportiva. So much fun! Then in the evening we went out to visit people.


So it rained non-stop all day Friday and today as well. This is a place that does not usually get rain. Therefore they do not have drains and gutters like the US. So needless to say the streets disappeared and literally became lakes and rivers! They have giant speed bumps here and we had to use them as bridges to cross the roads! It was insane! I needed a row boat or something! I honestly never thought I would have to use my coat and gloves here. I was wrong. I am freezing especially at night. I am a missionary Popsicle.

P.S. Apparently this rain is not normal here. So you know my gift of getting everyone else wet except for me on water rides, well, still got it. ;) Everyone was getting wet but me. 


We had an amazing lesson tonight! We were teaching this elderly couple for the first time and they were so receptive to everything. We invited them to be baptized and they accepted! Hopefully they will be baptized the 6th of February! This couple has great faith. I hope they get baptized!

Good news, I am going to stay here for another transfer which is awesome! I want to see these people baptized!

I live in Vista Hermosa #166, Hacienda Refugio, Gomez Palacio. My house is yellow and looks like a castle! There is even a bridge at the entrance of Hacienda Refugio. 

Lately I have been feeling like Alma when he taught the poor outside of the synagogues. These people are just as poor. However it is interesting how many of them don´t want to change their lives because it takes too much effort and they are afraid they will be "confused". Sometimes it is even harder to teach them because they don´t have the same education we do. We have to explain things in the most simple ways possible. So, I have been thinking a lot about my own heart and whether it is open and receptive. Are we open and receptive to what people are trying to teach us? To the people trying to help us? To the whisperings of the Holy Ghost? To the advice of others? To the commandments of God? Our hearts need to be open if we want to change. They need to be open and willing to be molded by the Lord. I try everyday to hand my life over to the Lord so that He can mold and change me into what He needs me to be. We need to be instruments in the hands of the Lord. But first, we need to be made into something that he can actually use to bless the lives of others. We first need to BECOME that instrument and then we can be used for amazing things and to perform miracles in the lives of others! Brothers, Sisters, Families, Friends! Turn to the Lord. Ask him to guide you and mold you so that you may be a beloved instrument (tool) in His workshop of salvation. I want to be his favorite hammer, wrench, pliers, etc. I don't want to be the tool He casts aside because it was not fulfilling its purpose in the great construction of eternal happiness!  Remember to become these tools requires action. Ask and act! 

Love you all!

Con mucho amor,

Hermana Lutze

P.S. I am starting to master my Jedi Skills! I already look like a Jedi in my jacket with my umbrella light saber! I am a sight to behold! I'm going to take on the world or I guess this small part of Mexico. 

Sunday, January 3, 2016

Week 12

Dear Hermana Lutze,

I hope this e-mail finds you well and happy. We spent time with the Weights, Millers, and Papa during this last week since we talked to you. There was lots of sledding and hot chocolate with a few rounds of laser tag thrown in and a viewing of the new Star Wars movie. Of course, we also had lots of yummy food for New Year's Eve and enjoyed New Year's Day with football games and more food. I worked on my blog. I'm actually blogging about our great trip to the DR right now.:)

I enjoyed your e-mail this week especially your new acronym I.L.L. (Infectious Love of Life)  I'm going to have to work on that some more with my siblings. Getting together is sometimes stressful and requires a great deal of patience. I'm so grateful for Bishop Sanchez and his wife and their willingness to serve you and your companion. Always remember their great example of service to you and try to emulate it. I've been so grateful for all the service I've received over the years and the opportunities that I've had to serve other people... This week I was able to take a meal over to the Howell's. Michelle's dad passed away on New Year's Eve. The funeral is this Thursday. I was also able to help Kathy Harvey who I visit teach. She fell and tore her quad muscle so I was able to take dinner to her and then will be going in this week in the morning for a little bit to help her get up and started for the day. Hermana Lutze true happiness comes to us as we serve those around us. As you know, it is through service that we learn to love others.

I must say you've had some interesting experiences this past week in teaching and I know there will be more. I'm so glad that you recognize the importance of the Spirit in teaching. I found it interesting that you talked about setting goals at the beginning of your e-mail. Our Relief Society lesson was on that today. Raegan used the December Ensign article "Navigating the Currents of Life." Do you get the Liahona down there? If so was this article in it? The article talks about taking the first steps forward, making an evaluation (which I'll talk more about in a minute), deciding on worthwhile goals, making it happen, and then grabbing an oar, a paddle, anything to help propel us forward and move us out of stagnant water. So in sacrament meeting I happened to be re reading a conference talk "What Lack I Yet?" that goes along with setting goals. In it Elder Laurence talks about the importance of the sacrament and using that time to ask that very question "What Lack I Yet?" Doing this during the sacrament is so important because the Spirit is their in abundance and will guide us. He said, "The Holy Ghost really does give customized counsel. He is a completely honest companion and will tell us things that no one else knows or has the courage to say." We must not be like the rich young ruler in the Bible who was humble enough to ask "What lack I yet?" but not faithful enough to follow the counsel he was given. "We must be willing to act when we receive an answer." "The Holy Ghost doesn't tell us to improve everything at once, if He did, we would become discouraged and give up. The Spirit works with us at our own speed, one step at a time, or as the Lord has taught, "line upon line, precept upon precept, ... and blessed are those who hearken unto my precepts, ...for unto him that receiveth I will give more." "Most of us clearly understand the Atonement is for sinners, I am not so sure, however, that we know and understand that the Atonement is also for saints-for good men and women who are obedient, worthy, and conscientious and who are striving to become better." "The Spirit can show us our weaknesses, but He is also able to show us our strengths. Sometimes we need to ask what we are doing right so that the Lord can lift and encourage us." "Be persistent, but never be discouraged. We will have to go beyond the grave before we actually reach perfection, but here in mortality we can lay the foundation." President Kimball taught, "I have learned that where there is a prayerful heart, a hungering after righteousness, a forsaking of sins, and obedience to the commandments of God, the Lord pours out more and more light until there is finally power to pierce the heavenly veil...A person of such righteousness has the priceless promise that one day he shall see the Lord's face and know that he is."

I love you!


P.S. The girls went to the temple last night with the Millers and as part of the 2016 Bishop's challenge they are being asked to go once per month. :) I'd already given Jakob that challenge this week. Any encouragement from your end to them would be much appreciated!