Allen's e-mail address

Monday, March 28, 2011

Last Week of March into April

Dear Everyone,

Another week has past and now comes another week. It’s kind of interesting to work for so long with a person and have them be so hopeful to progress and nothing happens. We have had to do a whole change up with our investigators. The investigators that we had just would not progress. We would teach them and teach them but they wouldn’t come to church and so we having to back off them and look for more. We have found more investigators and they are looking hopeful again. We found a family that looked like a great find. The only problem is/was that they did not come to church yesterday. It would have been so great to have them get to church. We are at this point with a lot of investigators. They agree to do a lot of things but they then don’t do them. Frustrating but oh well. We still managed to get 9 people to church yesterday and still hold on to 4 baptismal dates. Crazy stuff that happens but that’s life. So I got the coolest news ever yesterday!! So we have been teaching this couple that really likes the church and everything. They have a couple of problems to fix and they are going to get baptized. They need to stop smoking and…. Get married. Argh! The getting married situation is the hardest to deal with in the mission. There are a lot of people that don’t want to get married. So we faced this problem with them when we told them they had to get married. It wasn’t a total rejection but they didn’t want to get married within the next 6 months. So they kind of got pressured a little too much and stop going to church for about 2-3 weeks. And so yesterday they came back to church. That was very nice to see, investigators going solos. After I taught Gospel Principles, they stayed after and said they needed to tell us something. I was kind of excited because I’m just that way. Well, they told us they were going to get married in April and she was going to go to the registro civil (dad translate) to take out a turno. (dad explain) I was so excited that I was jumping up and down in the classroom. The only part that is sad is that I am leaving my area in two weeks. But I am so excited that they are going to get married and baptized now. Just some really awesome things that happen in the mission.
General Conference weekend!! I am so excited to listen to the prophet and the apostles. I hope that every one is getting ready to listen to a prophets voice. There are going to be a lot of good teachings. The mission has definitely helped me to have an eternal point of view on everything. The importance of listening to the prophet and a lot more small gospel principles that seem small but very important. I hope that everyone can just take in what the leaders of the church have to say. I guess I can’t say it enough but it is really important every general conference.
Thanks Erica for the letters you send me. I really like the paper strips. Gracias Abu y Gpa por sus cartas. Estoy emocionado por junio… jajaja. Thanks to the rest of the family for your emails also. I love you all and I’ll talk to you next week.

Elder Pickett

Elder Pickett and Elder McDonald

Monday, March 21, 2011

March Madness Photos

[I just barely received some photos that Elder Pickett sent a few hours ago. It seems that this cyber-cafe is not very reliable and emails come when they want. So here they are, enjoy. Paul]

Just Another Manic Monday

Dear Everyone,

So this week was just a normal week. Just doing the good tracting and all. We are finding a lot of less-active people. A lot of them just fell away because life started to get busy and they decided that it wasn’t important to put God first. Well, they are completely mistaken. The thing is, we need to put God first in everything so that everything else will go well. It’s kind of funny how that works no? We always explain to people that we have 168 hours in the week and God only asks for 3 of those hours. That means we have 165 hours to do everything we need to do to survive. Saying that you don’t have time to go to church is just ridiculous. It’s like tithing. Some people end up paying their tithing at the end of a pay check after they have bought everything. What happens there? They end up spending the money for tithing and now they don’t pay tithing. Depriving themselves of blessing because of irresponsibility. You have to be responsible to manage your time enough to put the Lord first. The Lord will help us in every way possible if we put him first. Studying your scriptures in the morning instead of turning on the TV will probably bring you blessings. Saying a prayer before you eat your food. Fulfilling your callings in the church. So many things we can do to show the Lord that we really want his blessings. It’s hard to watch people here that just treat the church like it’s some [edit] social group. People think they just need to go when they are feeling bad. We need to go to church EVERY WEEK! God promises us so many blessings for just keeping his commandments. One of those commandments is keeping the Sabbath day holy.

Yesterday we had a pretty successful day bringing people to church. We brought a handful of people to church but we had like 5 unexpected people come to church. In total, we had 12 investigators at church. That is a lot of people. Our difficulty right now is having all of them accept a baptismal date. That is the hard part about the mission is letting people use their agency. We really want the best for these people but they just want to keep on their ways. It’s tough. But we keep trucking a lot through it all.

So I was reading in the Book of Mormon (again like always), and I found a story that I remember from seminary. It’s the story in Alma 47. I forgot names and everything but they story can be easily applied to everyone of us. There is a Lamanite leader and a Nephite leader. The lamanite leader tries to persuade the Nephite leader to come down from his camp so they can do some sort of “treaty”. Eventually with enough persuasion, the nephite leader goes down off his camp on top of the hill and gets killed. The lesson that we can learn is, Satan is always trying to get us off our spiritual mountains. He is trying to lure us in so many ways that it is unthinkable. We need to stay on top of our mountains and not be moved. This applies to everyone. Not just the younger crowd. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen adults here who have fallen off the mountain because Satan said to come off the mountain just a little bit. Please stay on your mountains and listen to the prophets. Speaking of which, GENERAL CONFERENCE!!! Ha ha. This is a perfect time of year to get more instructions and to get better. Think of it as like New Years Day for everyone who wants to listen. A chance to get better and to do the things right.

Well, thanks to everyone that wrote me, Mom, Dad, Abuelita, Sara “the supreme”, Britney, and everyone that wrote me in the past. Cui, Miss Erica, Lina, Grandma and Grandpa Packard. Everyone who has sent to me, I have gotten them and I apologize for not writing back. Everyone pouch also I have received (Mary, thanks). I love you all and I really appreciate your support.

With love,

Elder Pickett

Monday, March 14, 2011

13 Marzo 2011

Dear Everyone,

Well, another week. This week got a bit colder. We were dying of heat and sweat on Wednesday and Thursday but then Friday it became really windy and Saturday it rained. It then turned really really cold. Ok, ok not that cold but definitely colder than it was the past couple weeks. So what happens when the first wave hits of cold air? That’s right. I get sick! I have a sore throat that doesn’t seem to want to go away. Just wonderful when you are on the mission. Getting sick on the mission is great…. Not.

But obviously it’s not the end of the world. We were able to baptize 2 more people. Well, three if you want to count the one that is a ward baptism that we taught. We almost completed a family with the kids getting baptized. I will attach the story that goes along with these baptisms. We are happy that they all got baptized and they all love to go to church with their grandma so it works out to keep them active. Also, our baptisms from last week came this past Sunday. It was really great to see everyone still coming to church. It was just really great to see everyone still trying to get better.

Historia de Exito - published in the mission newsletter

The older I get in the mission and in age, the more I am seeing that it is so important to go to church. We only go to take the sacrament. Ok that’s not true but it is the main reason why we go.

This past week while reading in the book of Mormon, I found my favorite scripture for the mission. It is Alma 29:9. I have really tried to apply this scripture to me and my mission. Well, actually the whole chapter I’m trying to apply to my mission. For some missionaries it takes some time to find their groove or to actually get it. I feel like I finally get it and it makes me happy. The inexpressible joy that I feel, to know that I am out here serving the Lord and helping others is amazing. The helping people part is what I like the most. Baptizing these kids made me so happy because I could see the joy on the face of the grandmother who had been inactive for 20 years and is now going again. She told us that she will never leave the church again. The oldest of the boys that got baptized told us that he wants to go on a mission and he is 11 years old now. Just some wonderful things that make me happy. The indescribable feelings that we get for doing the work of the Lord. The scripture that talks about how great will be our joy if we bring one soul to God and if we bring many… wow. I am experiencing that joy more and more while I am here in Argentina.

Serve in the wards where you are at. Fulfill your callings and do your duties. Do your home and visiting teaching. Please. Everyone needs to come back to church. Sometimes we are lazy or something always comes up that we can’t do our visits but some people need your help.

Thank you for your support always and keep strong. Although we may pass through some tough times, remember that our Heavenly Father is always there for us. I love you all and until next week…


Elder Pickett

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


Dear Everyone,

How are things? Things have been really crazy again. So yesterday was a holiday here so that is why I couldn’t write. Everything was closed and today, only half the things are closed. So right now I am writing from Wal-Mart because the internet café by our house is still closed so the only one open is here.

So yesterday we did some service. We basically built a house. We fixed the roof and the back wall of this one room house. It is literally 6 feet by 6 feet. It is so small and 4 people live inside of it. But we went with the other elders from our pench and it was a blast. We were telling jokes and laughing and have a great time helping repair this home that was ready to fall apart. Then afterward we went to a birthday party and we had some milanesas and peach cake. Oh, by the way, I love peach cake now. It was fun to talk and tell jokes and laugh with the family that we were with. I love being able to do the things that I would be doing at home like conversing with families.

Saturday we had THREE baptisms. It was pretty much awesome. We are finding a lot of people that are ready and a lot of kids who never got baptized at 8 so we are looking every where for baptisms.

So in our recent district meeting, I talked about the importance of being obedient. There are huge reasons for being obedient. Obviously the reason of blessings, if we do what God wants, he will bless us. But there are other things. If we are obedient, we will receive a light. That light is also the Holy Ghost. And once we have the Holy Ghost, we will have power to do whatever God wants us to do. So with obedience comes power. That has been the most important thing I have learned out here in the mission. Obviously it is not as easy once you get out in the real world so I have to practice real well how to do it here.

Abuelita y Grandpa, Felicitaciones!! Tal vez puedan pasar por acá otra vez para tener almuerzo pero esta vez vamos a comer asado! Jaja Les amo muchisimo. I love you all. Thank you for writing me. I really do appreciate hearing from everyone and getting support. Elder Craig, I love hearing your stories. I love you Bro.

Until next week,

Elder Pickett

[Dad note: I know many of you are writing Allen and we sure appreciate it. I am trying to get him to acknowledge the letters but as you can see, we are not too successful. Please continue to write to him and when he comes home in 6 months you can chew him out for not responding. Thanks]

General Conference Highlights