Rachael's Mission

Mexico Torreon Mission October 2015 - April 2017

Rachael's Picture

Rachael's Picture

Monday, June 27, 2016

Week 37 (Ask Inspired Questions)

Dear family and friends,

Well another week has flown by. I really need to take more notes of what happens in the day. I have been slacking lately.

Monday: Normal day. But it passed way too fast! P-days are always gone in a flash.

Tuesday: It was a good day. We had a really fun "Noche de Hogar" with the family Martinez Flores! It was on faith and we had an activity that was a blast! We laughed so much with them! This family was on the point of breaking apart entirely and now we are seeing so much change-more unity. It is amazing how the gospel is for the family. It is to unite us here on earth and for eternity! We are working really hard right now with the husband. He is the most hard hearted at the moment. If we can get him to soften up and be baptized, the whole family will for sure go with him! This is such an amazing work to save families!

Wednesday:  Today we did splits with two members from the ward. I went with Hermana Kati and we talked to a man about the plan of salvation. In that moment I felt that I should ask him to be baptized. At first I thought, "No! That's crazy. I've just met this man and we have only been talking for about 3 minutes!" However, despite my thoughts of the natural woman, I invited him to be baptized and he accepted! It was my first invitation in the street that someone has actually accepted! It was an amazing experience! Now we will have to see what happens with him, if he progresses. I hope so!

I also went with some members to visit an Hermana Blake. She is very sick and basically can't do anything. Her dedicated visiting teachers go to teach her at least once a month every month without fail. It was so great to see these women fulfill their call and to love this woman so dearly and so perfectly. It didn't matter that she can't go to church or that she can barely hear us. They went to fulfill their duty and to truly love this woman. Hermana Blake was so grateful for their visit and that the Hermanas remembered her. I truly know that Visiting teaching is so important. Everyone needs that support. It doesn't matter if they look like they are fine or have the perfect life. Everyone has a problem with something in their lives. Until we are perfect and exactly like Jesus, we all need help with something.

Thursday: Today was awesome because we had 8 lessons with a member present! Woohoo! That's a new record for one day! However it did involve a lot of standing. We didn't sit all day. So we were really tired when we got home.

Friday: Today we found an investigator of GOLD!!! We contacted her and her mom the other day while it was pouring down buckets of rain. We were all huddled under a tarp in front of a store. Today we went to visit them. The mom wasn't there, but the daughter, Ruth, talked to us. I really learned the importance of inspired questions. We found out her father died of cancer 4 years ago. We talked about the plan of salvation and how she can be united with her father. It was a very spiritual and moving lesson. We invited her to be baptized and she accepted! We are going to work so hard with her so she can be baptized and have a strong testimony!

Saturday: Normal day

Sunday: It was kind of a sad day. All of our investigators were sick-literally all of them! So no one came to church. But it's okay, next week will be better.

Today I was reading in Ether how Moroni is now the only one left and all these great civilizations crumbled because of their pride and refusal to repent. These civilizations had all the power, all the riches, they had everything they needed but because of their pride and their sole focus on riches they destroyed themselves. Sometimes I think we are like that. We are self-destructive. We make our own problems. We overthink things. We blow up at small things. We take things the wrong way. I think that about 50% of the problems we have, we create. We create them with our pride, our greed, and our disobedience.We have to learn to humble ourselves, accept our weaknesses and work to change them. We must accept that we are not perfect and accept the weaknesses in other people. If not, we will destroy our family and our lives just like the Nephites and Jaredites were destroyed. I know each of us has the capacity to change. Through Jesus Christ, all change is possible if we are only willing to take that first step to change.

Love you all! I hope you all have an amazing week!

Hermana Lutze

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Week 37

Querida Hermana Lutze,

Como anda todo? We attended Karen and Joseph's sealing on Saturday in the Oakland Temple! It was very nice. The reception was great as well but a ton of work! Our presidency met on Tuesday. We always have incredible meetings. I love working with these sisters and knowing that we are being guided by the Spirit in the decisions we are making. We talked about the book "Daughters in My Kingdom." Have you seen that used in Mexico? The General RS presidency has emphasized its use. I'm just curious. 

Hannah worked like crazy last week and is a little sick this week because of it. She can't wait to leave on our trip this Friday. Me too... I'm ready for a vacation.

Natalie enjoyed Youth Conference. It was tough getting her there! She went and actually had the most fun boating! She went tubing and wake boarding. I'm so glad she attended. I've never met a more stubborn person.

Jakob enjoyed Scout Camp. They fished, rode horses, and played in the water. He earned his Fly Fishing MB. He's stoked about it! He actually caught a fish on his first try. :) 

Interesting experience that I wanted to share from this weekend. We were outside the temple taking pictures after the sealing and saw a huge group of people further down on the grounds also taking pictures. The girls were dressed immodestly and we found out later that the church allows families celebrating Quincineras to take pictures on the grounds. The feelings I had as a watched them and their complete lack of understanding for the sacredness of what occurs in the temple made me really sad. We'd just watched the performance of the highest ordinance in the temple. It was so beautiful and so sacred and then to come out and see this group, it just made you wish that they too understood what the temple stands for. So Hermana Lutze keep at it! You're awesome and we love you so much!



Monday, June 20, 2016

Week 36 (Do You Obey Out of Fear or Love?)

Dear family and friends,

This week was slow and fast at the same time? I'm not even sure how that is possible. But hey, on the mission, anything is possible ;)

My week:

Monday: I officially became a mother! Woohoo!.......Wait, I don't know how to be a mother? I have no experience with this kind of thing! Let's just say that my Heavenly Father loves me so much that He decided I was too comfortable, and gave me a new adventure in the mission :). Hermana Montoya is my Bebe and she has about a month and a half in the mission. I will be finishing another 8 weeks of training with her. I sure hope that I can figure out this whole parenting thing;) I am still in Durango but in a different area-Barrio Estacion. On another note,  today we had a Samuel the Lamanite experience! A bunch of kids were throwing rocks at us and none of them hit us nor came close to us. So we either have the Spirit or those kids really need to work on their aim. I think I'll go with the Spirit.

Tuesday: Well, this ENTIRE area is hills. We are literally neighbors with the mine and everywhere we go it is a hill. I'm going to get a lot of exercise in this new area (Estacion). However, it was a Great Day as usual! Today I met Ruben (the recent convert of about 2 weeks) and he is an amazing convert!! He really wants to be a disciple of Christ, obey EVERYTHING and help with EVERYTHING! We need more members with that kind of attitude!

Wednesday: We were looking through the Area Book and we found recent converts that no one is visiting. One that we found and went to visit was Adilenne. When we arrived we had a great lesson with her Grandma about repentance and the Atonement. She has really strayed from the path and knows it wasn't coincidence that we came to visit their family. Hopefully we can help them reactivate. :)

Jueves: Conferencia con Presidente Ramos! Those are always the best capacitaciones! We talked about Desire, Intencion, y Accion. All three are important, but one without the other is incomplete. We first need a desire to act, then have the intention that we are going to do it and then we have to actually act. We face this problem every day in the mission. There are many people who have good intentions but NEVER ACT! It can be frustrating at times, but hopefully we can get better at helping them actually act in their lives.  The rest of the day was great. We found lots of new investigators. 

Friday: I ate Tomalitos (baby tamales) and they were fabulous! I will have to try and make them when I come home! You can make yummy salads :)

Saturday: Another great day! We found a young man named Antonio. He has suffered  from many addictions and the Christian church has changed his life. Now we just hope to help him find the fullness of the Gospel! He is very spiritual so I have a lot of hope for him!

Sunday: We passed to pick up our investigators and they didn't come to church with us. It was sad and it broke my baby's heart. I had to help cheer her up and explain that it isn't her or her efforts. The people just have their agency. However at 12 two of our investigators showed up! This family Flores is so great! They have so much potential! They have had family problems, but the gospel has helped strengthen their family, and they have seen the blessings!! I hope we can help them be baptized!!

This week I have learned this area is really for me. My companion and Hno. Ruben taught me a lot about obeying with exactitud. I obey the commandments more easily because I know the consequences, and I know why God has placed them. But sometimes when I have rules to follow, like the commandments, and I don't really have a good reason, it is hard for me to follow them with exactitud. My natural woman enters in and says "No, why do you need to do that? It doesn't change anything?" There are a lot of rules in the mission and in life that at times we don't understand or have a reason why. However, I am learning every day to obey with more exactitud and obey not out of fear of a consequence or for a reward. I am learning to obey more for the love of my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ. Like it says in the scriptures, "sì me amais, guardais mis mandamientos," if you love me, keep my commandments. Hna. Montoya (has a year and a half as member) and Hno. Ruben (2 weeks in the church) and they have really taught me how to obey for love-to obey because I want to be better, to obey because I want to make my Heavenly Father proud and I want to return to Him with the least amount of spots or stains. To be as pure as possible! I really admire these two people so much and I hope I can develop the attribute of true obedience and have this desire to really change, to really be the best I can be because it is only through our obedience that we receive blessings. It is only through our obedience that we can truly become like our Heavenly Father because our Father's kingdom is built on laws, justice and obedience. If we can't obey here how can we expect to be accepted into His kingdom? We need to obey with exactness.

I love you all! Have a great week!


Hermana Lutze

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Week 36

Querida Hermana Lutze,

Como fue tu semana primera como Mami? Tell us about your new companion and your new area. 

Life here is the usual crazy. I went to a patriotic Relief Society activity on Tuesday. Joyce Jacobsen came over to me to talk about her husband's condition. It sounded like appendicitis. I was right. He had an appy the next day. He just had open heart surgery a few weeks ago and now this second surgery. Brother Goul passed away and his funeral was this week. I remember him as such a sweet man and always interested in the person he was talking to. MayRene told me some beautiful stories about them when I went to the viewing Friday night. I worked Wednesday out on the unit. I was charging. We admitted 5 and transferred 3 with two more admits slated to come at the end of the shift. I was exhausted by the end of the day. They were sick admits too. Sometimes it's a matter of tucking them in the bed but these patients weren't like that. Thursday night Dad and I went to La Jolla Groves as part of a "Thank You" dinner for the i-Centra implementation. Nice evening! We ate dinner over at the Russells on Friday and visited with Papa Fred and Mama Carol for a little while before they were off to California again. They left Saturday morning. Yesterday we met Brent and Amy at Seven Peaks. Everyone had a great time. We then took them to Zootopia. Very cute movie. You'll have to see that one when you get home. That evening the adults went out for Sushi while the kids ate pizza. I'm exhausted just telling you about my week. ;) I spent a lot of time at work and in the yard this week as well. I filled two trash cans with cuttings from the yard. Dad and I will be in California this coming weekend for Karen's wedding. 

I've started reading at the beginning of the Book of Mormon again and was rereading the testimony of the three and eight witnesses. The Spirit bore testimony to me again that what they said was true. Not one of them every denied their testimony of the Book of Mormon even though some of them later had issues with the church itself. It's all true! Brent and Amy shared with us some of their Trek experience. They were picked to reenact the Jens and Elsie Nielson handcart pull. They had a similar experience to Tasha and Rob. I'll never forget the pounding of your feet as you ran down the hill to help Tasha. May we always RUN to the rescue of others!

Love you!



Monday, June 13, 2016

Week 35 (In the Lord's Time and Way)

Dear family and friends,

Hola a todos de Mexico! Well, another crazy week has flown by. I can't believe that I'm almost to the downhill run. That is kind of scary :) But life keeps moving, with or without me. Entonces, I better go with it. :)

My week:

Monday: Just a normal dia de preparacion. In the evening we visited our investigators.

Tuesday: We had an awesome Capacitacion de Zona on Preguntas Inspiradas (Inspired Questions). Really, Preguntas Inspiradas are the best way to have success on the mission. Afterwards, we went to a member's house to eat. I ate rice and we put bananas in it! I was so surprised because it was actually delicious! I've now found a new way to eat bananas other than in ice cream ;) 

Wednesday: We took about a million bus rides. My companion had to go to the dermatologist. We went there and then stopped by the pharmacy, but she forgot some ID for reimbursement, so we went back to the house and then back to the pharmacy and then back to the house again. All in all it was 5 bus rides and our entire morning ;) I'm sure we rode ever blue bus in Durango.  

Thursday: Today, I don't know why, but my compañera and I were really, really synced with the Spirit. Normally we feel the Spirit. But today was special because I knew the Spirit was actually talking to me  and guiding me by the hand. Really exciting experience! 

Friday: We went to visit Carlos our investigator. He had the homework to really pray and meditate on baptism to receive a clear answer from God. Well, he did the homework and received his answer!......and decided not to be baptized. He wants to be baptized in New York. We couldn't believe our ears, to say the least. He denied his answer and was putting his own terms to God. He said he made a deal with God that if He let him get to New York, he would be baptized. We were very clear with him and let me be clear with all of you. We do not put our terms to God. In this life, God is the one who sets the terms and we can choose to obey or not obey. Accept or not accept.  But we do not make the deals. The blessings that WE want will only come after the trial of our faith. They WILL come. But we must always do the will of our Heavenly Father first, not only doing His will if He gives us something first. God  does not need us, but we need Him. So He sets the terms which we can accept and receive all the happiness that we will ever need. I promise that if you submit to the Lord, everything will be all right. Everything will work out perfectly. But we can't focus on Him our plans, We have to search for HIS plans. Don't deny the answers from God and don't hesitate to follow them. 

Saturday: Today was the most perfect day! We went to visit our investigator Monserat. She wasn't there and her husband said to return in about an hour. So we went to visit our recent converts. As we were walking to their house, we saw a young woman standing outside her home. She looked like she was going to a party. Lots of makeup, hair done, short short dress. At first I thought, no no. She won't want to listen. She just wants to live her party life. But, as we were about to pass, the Spirit stopped me to talk to her (literally and physically stopped me.) As we talked, she began to cry. She told us how she hates being immodest and wearing lots of makeup. She told us how her mother-in-law and her family disapprove that she  was baptized into the Christian church (all her family is Catholic or non religious) and they force her to dress up like that and go to parties and such. Wow, I couldn't believe it. This woman has passed through so much with her family. They have criticized her for her religion and beliefs, and she was beginning to crumble beneath their pressure. I was so grateful I listened to the Spirit to contact her.  She has so much potential to become a member of the church!! She is definitely an escogido. I hope she listens to the Spirit and learns the truth of the gospel and gets baptized!! After that we went to the recent converts' house and we found that their family was visiting them. We talked with them and learned that the cousin that was there was struggling. We learned that she has been having thoughts about ending her life.We arrived in the nick of time to talk to her about the gospel. Sadly she's not in our area, but the missionaries will pass by. Interestingly enough, we arrived 5 minutes after they arrived. If we hadn't talked with Daniela first (woman in dress) we would have arrived too early and not found them there to talk about the gospel. After we talked with them, we went back to Monserat and taught her. Truly it was an amazing day-all done in the Lord's Time and the Lord's Way.

Sunday: Normal Sunday. The air was so fresh and crisp! Also, I literally saw a dog get run over, I saw him UNDER the tire and he yelped and got up and ran and ran and ran. I hope he is still OK. Yah......not a pretty Sunday sight ;) 


1. Let the Holy Spirit guide;
Let him teach us what is true.
He will testify of Christ,
Light our minds with heaven's view.

2. Let the Holy Spirit guard;
Let his whisper govern choice.
He will lead us safely home
If we listen to his voice.

3. Let the Spirit heal our hearts
Thru his quiet, gentle pow'r.
May we purify our lives
To receive him hour by hour

This is my spiritual thought for you. Let the spirit guide you. Always follow its promptings and never reject the answers God gives you.

I love you all! Have a good week!!


Hermana Lutze

P. S. Mom note: Hermana Lutze was transferred to a new area today and is now a Mami! Hopefully we'll hear more about this new development next week.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Week 35

Hola Hermana Lutze,

Como estas? Esperemos que todo esta bien alli!

It was another busy week. Jakob and Natalie left on Monday for NYLT at Timberline (Leadership training for Scouts) and EFY. They both learned a lot and had a great time. I know more about Jakob's week than Natalie's. Imagine that?! Hannah worked all week, spent some time with friends, and went to see a movie with me-"Me Before You" It was good and heart wrenching at the same time. You gotta love chick flicks. Dad and I went to the Hale Theater on Tuesday to see "Big River" - theater version of Mark Twain's Tom Sawyer. It was good especially when they opened up the stage and it was completely full of water underneath. Wow! Amazing! I helped Hannah register for BYU that night. We stayed up until 1 am. She got all but one class that she wanted. Dad and I attended the temple on Thursday and participated in sealings. I love spending time in the Celestial room. We also met with Jakob's new soccer team this week. I do really like the coach. I sure hope he can help improve Jakob's game. We picked Jakob up from Scout camp yesterday and visited with Anita at her home. It was fun to see her yard and her house. :) Dad helped diagnosis a faucet issue while we were there. Leave it to dad to find something to fix. I'm just glad he was able to help her because her husband was out of town. I taught Relief Society today. It went well and it was fun to see the sisters of the 48th ward. I miss them. 

I wanted to share with you something today that not many know about yet because it wasn't officially announced. Sister Burton and her presidency recently changed the wording of the purpose of the RS. Sister Edgington from the RS board came last Sunday and related this to Sister Crandall and the 48th Ward RS presidency. It use to read, "Relief Society prepares women for the blessings of eternal life by helping them increase their faith and personal righteousness, strengthen families and homes, and help those in need. IT NOW reads, "Relief Society helps prepare women for the blessings of eternal life as they increase faith in Jesus Christ and His Atonement, strengthen families and homes through ordinances and covenants, and work in unity to help those in need." I love the increased focus and specificity in the revised purpose. Increase faith in what... Jesus Christ and His Atonement, strengthen families how...through ordinances and covenants, and help those in need how... in unity!!!! 

I love you! Women of righteousness are needed more than ever! I can't remember if I shared this quote with you but I love it so much I'm sharing it again!

Elder Kim B. Clark emphasized in the October 2015 General Conference, “Whatever level of spirituality or faith or obedience we now have, it will not be sufficient for the work that lies ahead. We need greater spiritual light and power. We need eyes to see more clearly the Savior working in our lives and ears to hear His voice more deeply in our hearts….If we will look to Christ and open our eyes and our ears, the Holy Ghost will bless us to see the Lord Jesus Christ working in our lives, strengthening our faith in Him with assurance and evidence.” (“Eyes to See and Ears to Hear”, Elder Kim B. Clark, GC October 2015)

Love you!


Monday, June 6, 2016

Week 34 (I've Never Loved Family History BUT ...)

Dear family and friends,

Well, I don't like how the time is speeding up faster and faster and I am getting closer and closer to the halfway point!! In about a month I will be halfway done!!! That just can't be possible! I have to say that the Elders are actually very blessed to have the opportunity to serve for 2 years. I'm a little jealous, but it's OK, I will be fine. :)

Monday: We played basketball and soccer with the Hermanas!! Way fun to finally do some real exercising! It was blazing hot while we played, but still fun! Great day! 

Tuesday: Not much happened today or I can't remember. Take your pick.

Wednesday: Today we went to visit Debanni (a recent convert) and we found her with some of her friends. We taught all three of them and they actually have some good potential! I hope we can work with them and their families! Also, we went to visit a man name Primitivo (English: Primitive and it is fitting seeing how he has about 80+ years ;) However, he is so sweet! He actually went to the store and bought us little sodas! (He is in a wheelchair because he has only one leg so it was quite the kind gesture for us :) )  Another man came up to us and started to ask us "How ya doooin" "Hola guerita y morenita" ...........ya thanks, we're not interested right now ;). He was definitely drunk. But so funny that he called my companion Morenita!! It's like saying 'Hey White Person' in the United States!! ;) It also hailed for about 3 minutes here! It was a miracle! My companion was so excited!! She has never seen hail before! 

Thursday and Friday: Still teaching Ignacio. He has numerous problems in his life, a lot of sins and burdens. However, it has been amazing to see him start the repentance process and truly repent and have this true change in his character and personality. He has changed so much and all thanks to his personal desire to change and his relationship with God. We haven't done much. We just try to teach and strengthen him but it is really him that is changing and fighting to be better. It just goes to show that ANYONE can truly change if they want to. We also have a recent convert who suffers from same-sex attraction. It is amazing to see how the Gospel is helping him overcome his temptations and really change his life! He is amazing and a fighter as well! I know it is not easy for these people. but the fact is that we have to align our lives with God. We can't change the laws of God to fit the people. No one said it would be easy, but God has promised us an Eternity of Happiness if we can do it!

Saturday: Today we went to visit Monse and we hung out with her and her 3 cute kids!! They have so much energy!! They are always trying to jump all over us!! And they absolutely love to take pictures!! So we have a lot of pictures of them ;) Her family is so cute!

Sunday: Well today was a normal, beautiful Sunday. We didn't do much because my compañera felt sick. So we went to a member's house so she could drink some "Ruda" tea and then they took us home. It was also the day of elections, so we had to enter in early because the people started to get a little crazy.

Well that is basically my week! However I love what one Hermana talked with us about when we were eating with her family. We talked about family history. I will be honest, I have never had a love or desire to do family history work. It bores me. Mainly because I have no idea what I am doing. However as we were talking about it I realized a couple of things. One-family history work is good for three things, conversion, retention, and reactivation. It can literally help us with all phases of the missionary work. Second, that the temple is where we can be united with all of our past and all of our future. Every time we go to the temple we do work for others. We only do the work for us once. This should tell us the importance of family history. If we are only doing for others when we go to the temple, then the temple really is not as much for us as it is for ALL of our family. Third, I realized why the scripture says in D&C 128:15, "And now, my dearly beloved brethren and sisters, let me assure you that these are principles in relation to the dead and the living that cannot be lightly passed over, as pertaining to our salvation. For their salvation is necessary and essential to our salvation, as Paul says concerning the fathers—that they without us cannot be made perfect—neither can we without our dead be made perfect."

I began to think, "How can our spirits be at peace in the Celestial Kingdom if we haven't saved all our ancestors? How can we be at peace knowing that we could have saved them and that they could have made it to the Celestial Kingdom if we had only taken the time to look for them and do the work for them?" I know that I could not rejoice in living with God if I have failed others and not given them this chance to have the same joy that I have. I now realize that we HAVE to do this work. We have to do this work so that ALL of our family has the opportunity to live in the Celestial Kingdom. Otherwise it will haunt us for all of eternity. I know it's not easy, I know that it may not be the most exciting thing on the planet for some (like me), but now, knowing this, I have more desire to learn how to do family history, to discover my ancestors, and in the process, I know I will also discover myself.

I love you all!! I hope you can get going on family history work and if you are already doing it, well, keep going!!


Hermana Lutze

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Week 34

Querida Hermana Lutze,

Te amamos muchisimo! Te damos gracias a nuestro Padre Celestial por ti y tu ejemplo a tus hermanos! It was another busy, crazy week but we made it. Jakob and Natalie are ready for Scout Camp and EFY. They both leave tomorrow and return on Saturday. Hannah will be an only child for a week. She will be working a lot and getting ready to start her other job at the hospital. We visited with Mama Carol and Papa Fred on Monday and then took the kids to see Captain America: Civil War. The rest of the week was spent working at work and at home. Hannah worked a ton at her job and did all the pre-employment for the hospital. She's working on her BYU class schedule right now. She saved someone's life at the care center on Friday. She performed the Heimlich maneuver. She was so proud of herself for staying calm. I am too! Natalie started guitar again. Jakob attended basketball camp with Ben and Jack. He also went to Arsenal, Surf, and Forza tryouts. We didn't have much luck picking a team based on flight level so we picked this time based on the coach. I sure hope we made the correct decision. He will be playing for Forza. I took the girls shopping for summer clothes on Saturday and we actually found some knee length shorts. Amazing! Today Dad and I taught the CTR 6-7 year old class. I'd forgotten how much I love teaching Primary. The Spirit is so strong in Primary. They emanate the light of the gospel. We talked about the importance of prayer and how the Lord sometimes says yes, no or not now but however he answers our prayers it is always in our best interest even though we may not think so at the time. I'm grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who loves us no matter what! We sometimes think that He only loves us when we are obedient. That is not true! You will come to understand this more when you become a parent.

I love you!