On November 16, 2015 I went to the Mission Office for my last time. I got to see the new cambios for the rest of the missionaries. Had my interview with President. Hna Videla gave us her marriage class presentation. We went to the airport...said more goodbyes...and had some amazing contact experiences..(we walked around looking for someone to contact and we saw a man in army camo and felt like we should talk with him. Ended up that his father had just passed away and he was flying home for the funeral...wow...the Spirit truly guides).
It was hard to walk through security, thinking that that might be the last time I would ever be in Chile. I am at peace knowing that I gave my "all" in my mission. That is not saying I was a perfect missionary, but through Christ I was able to give my best and He made up the rest.
When I saw my mom, dad, and Caden via FaceTime waiting for me in the airport, it was a beautiful feeling. To be embraced, hugged, and kissed by those whom I call my family, those who had waited, supported, and prayed for me during those 18 months was a joy beyond words.
Thursday, December 17, 2015
"Behold, who can glory too much in the Lord? Yea, who can say too much of his great power, and of his mercy, and of his long-suffering towards the children of men? Behold, I say unto you, I cannot say the smallest part which I feel."
That is the only thing I can say about my mission. When people ask me, "Tell me about your mission!" it is like a wave of spiritual, emotional, and physical feelings. I know that the Spirit carried me when I couldn't walk another step. I know that Christ was helping me and cheering me on every step.
This mission experience literally opened my eyes to the splendor and beauty of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I love Chile. I love the people I met. But most importantly, I love my Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ.
The streets of Santiago
My apartment on the 14th floor
The best group of Hermanas- Las quiero mucho
My twin jaja
My family of Independencia
Temple day with Presidente y Hermana Videla
Ataque de El Salto-wonderful member missionaries
Hna Catia y Ivan
Hna Monica Lopez
Fiorela y Estefani
Funniest pic ever...1...2..3...ahhh
Love them...la Fm Margual y Juliana/Martin
He always practiced his english with us, even while we were in the elevator...
Thursday, November 5, 2015
Instead of a regular letter, I decided to put some thoughts together.
Love ya mucho
Never thought to go before,
It was myself holding me back-
To ask my Heavenly Father,
If I should leave my way to accept His greater hand.
Guiding me wasn’t easy.
I put up a good fight.
Leaving it all behind me-
Am I doing the right?
It was not one answer-rather many
To realize it was not my curiosity but destiny.
All happened fast-God had waited long enough
The first flicker of the faith I planted,
Called in my weak and growing state,
To join the many.
I left thinking it would be easy.
Knocking a few doors,
Passing out pamphlets
I had no idea to put it simply.
Yet the moment I arrived
That the peace I felt
Meant that He had a plan for me to do.
Six weeks spent in a cold white room
With a group of youngsters
Buttoned shirts and ties,
All of us without a clue.
To talk about Christ,
To wear His name.
I knew who He was?
the stories and photos, from my seminary days.
I am not a sinner.
I know how to teach too.
My pride would soon learn,
That my weaknesses are more than a few.
The language didn’t come at once
Actually not at all.
I doubted that this gift existed,
To loosen my twisted tongue.
I remember my first night out.
It scared me to my knees.
How should I talk to people,
When I sound so-o-o silly?
Who knew the missionaries walked so fast?
Took a great force to keep the pace.
Now I have more profound respect,
For the pioneers who treked across the plain.
Slowly and steadly I learned my role.
Yet with each step forward came 3 steps back.
We taught about this Atonement,
Where He suffered and paid for all.
I realized this meant more than a historical fact,
But was the way to save myself from-
My own Fall.
Now here I am,
Writing this to you.
Feeling this profound love,
For all He has asked me to do.
I could not imagine
How much He would form me.
To take me in my broken state,
Opening my eyes to the reality.
The gospel of Christ is not a club,
It is not a good idea,
Rather it is the plan from Above.
We are children of a God,
Put in this state of faith.
To do everything in our power,
Then trust in His grace and wait.
Giving up our will to His
Can be like a jump in the darkness,
But with the greatest given certainty,
Of a landing in all He has promised.
The mission has no end this is true,
Because we live in a world where this is much to do.
Forget these shiny worldly distracciones,
Follow the living prophet, and put our faith, hope, and love into action.
Saturday, October 31, 2015
The view from our apartment
Thank you so much for your words of encouragement and animo. Love you guys tons! I think I am loving the mission more and more every day. I wish I could take what I have learned and could have put it into practice in the beginning of the mission...but I know each “phase” of the mission is important. I love the mission, but more importantly I love the gospel of Jesus Christ, which will never end.
A couple of experiences from this week:
We did a stand in the feria (open market in the street) which was really fun. We were able to do a lot of contacts, and it is super genial because the feria takes place close to where the church is at.
I gave a talk in sacrament meeting. I used the story of when I was learning how to drive and I crashed into the garage (haha) to talk about the atonement of Christ. Thanks mom and dad for your patience with me learning how to drive...you never gave up.
M received the priesthood and will be receiving a calling!!!
This next week Hna Videla and I will be presenting in 3 zone conferences which are based on the mental and physical health...your prayers would be greatly appreciated. We are hoping to help the missionaries have the power to cuidarse mejor.
We had one of the lessons màs espeical that I have had in the mission. We talked a haitiana named M. In the beginning of the lesson we prayed for the gift of tongues, because she does not speak spanish super bien. Wow. The spirit carried the lesson. With each point of the lesson (the restauracion) she was getting more and more excited. In the end of the lesson we asked her, do you believe that God could call prophets hoy en dìa...she looked at us and said yes, and I know this message is true, I never knew this existed before...I know it is true because my mind lets me believe it and...(then she pointed at her heart) I can feel it right here. There are people with spirits so valient here and so open to receive the truth.
Look up the painting by Greg Olsen...the way of joy....this painting has been really important to me in my mission...I saw the imagen here in the mission, and it was a answer from Heavenly Father to help me draw nearer to Christ.
Make it a great week.
Saturday, October 24, 2015
Love the mission. Seriously. The gospel of Jesus Christ is the real life, the purpose of this life.So we have started to do intercambios with our group of hnas this week. This cambio we only have 4 comps in our group, which makes it a little easier. We have two new hnas which makes it really fun. It is amazing to see the excitement and the light that the new missionaries bring into the field.Hmm. I seriously have a hard time thinking about what I want to share with you guys. It is amazing to see the hand of God in His work. In the mission we learn a lot in the way to see His hand. He could do the work on his own, but He allows us to participate with Him to prepare the world for the second coming of Christ.This week in our District Class we read a scripture that I loved. DC 84:77. Christ should be our best friend. He is a friend that accepts us how we are and helps us to become better. As we confide in His power, we will learn more in who we truely are. We are not defined by our titles, weaknesses, or accomplishments. We are children of God, and with this title we will have the hope and the faith to keep on trying.We had an interesting experience this week. So we were in route to a Clinic to help an elder with his doctors appointment, because the mission presidents wife was in a conference. We were not exactly sure how to get to the clinic so we were asking people in the metro (train underground...a subway is the word right???) While we were talking with a worker, a young man approached us and asked us...do you remember me? His name is Pancho. Honestly I did not remember his face, but he told us that he was going to a place right by the clinic. During this trip I was thinking he was a member from a differnt ward or something. Because he had this "light"with him. But when we went our way, I asked my comp Hna Henry and she reminded me that Pancho was a contact we had done. And there was a click. When we contacted him, hace tiempo, he was smoking outside his house and told us that he was atheist basically but that we could pass by. For me, this experience showed me that Heavenly Father has a way in preparing people. Poco a poco.My invite to you guys this week. Press humble service, without receiving recognition. (read alma 48:17-19)Find joy in the journey.Love you guysHna Duffy
Saturday, October 17, 2015
I am so happy to hear from each of you, and to see how many blessings all of you are receiving. Sigan adelante yah!
I am really excited to have a scripture of enfoque with you guys each week, my scripture for this next week is 1 Timothy 4:12. I will let you know how my studies of Moroni 7 go. This last week my scripture was 2 Nefi 31:20....I am focusing on the idea of hope this cambio..love it!
This week...was a long one. My comp was sick for this week, but she fought the good fight, and we were able to still be out and about. But bless her heart, we were in a lesson with a man named M for the first time. And suddenly my comp got super pale and asked to use the bathroom, and barely made it to the toilet before exploding. We decided sí o sí this man is going to be baptized, because he is still visiting with the missionaries.
Some of the memories (spiritual and funny) of this last week:
-Teaching a young teenage girl in the street about the plan of salvation with the figurines that Hna Henry has. The spirit was strong as this burdened girl could think of the message and the love of God.
-A investigadora named M A yelling....[DUUUUFFFFYYYY[ because we had passed by her house. We were going to have an appointment with her but she wasn't there..but she ended up seeing us from her car when she was pulling up. …One of those moments where you had to be there.
-Our [friends in the flower shop...I dont even know how to put it into words.
-Hna H and I tried to speak in English while we were in the house to see how it would go….(Yes mom you will need to teach me how to talk again;) How did it go with Caden??
This week I learned a great lesson about the Atonement of my friend and Salvador Jesus Christ. I had an experience where I realized that I still had a weakness that I thought I had defeated here in the mission. It surprised me, and I became very frustrated to think that this change was not flawless. I began doubting myself and the changes and the progress that Heavenly Father has helped me make while in the mission. I began to blame myself for this weakness again. And it honestly threw me for a loop. I read a talk by Elder Kopishchke called..Being Accepted of the Lord. From this talk I learned that I was making the love of God and Christ conditional. I was thinking that they only were pleased or loved me when I was doing the right. I know they love the sinner but not the sin...but I had not thought to apply this knowledge to myself. I know even when I mess up, Christ is at my side with a smile to help me up. I cannot deny the changes I have felt here in the mission, but this does not mean that the fight is done. Satan knows how to attack us where it hurts the most, but God does not want us to live in despair, only focusing on our errors. I cannot say I know everything about the Atonement, but I know that yo Hermana Duffy, am nothing without Him in my life. I am a spiritual daughter of God in this foreign land..the earth..to learn from my mistakes (which Christ already paid for). Through the Grace of God, I am not paying back the debt of Christ (that would be impossible), rather I am trying to accept Him, CONFIDE in Him, and live His rules, and to live my best to show Him my love.
Focus in the things you know. Focus in your strengths and divine talents. We are literally in a spiritual battle. Be humble enough to accept the Atonement in your life. Christ does not ask us to be perfect without Him, He asks us to allow Him to help us.
Love the gospel, Love the church, Love you guys!
Make it a great week.
Pray to know the will of God. One thing you can change to help you in your personal progress. Always put yourself in places where the Spirit can go with you.
Tuesday, October 6, 2015
It has been another wonderful week, down here in Santiago Chile. We just got out of the Cambios meeting (Hna Henry and I will be staying in our sector!!!). Arriving to our group we will have 2 new hermanas, and 2 hermanas coming from the MTC , which means we will be plenty busy for the next 6 weeks!
I am so grateful for the cambio we just ended...and it ended with a bang! Wedding, conference, and baptism. I sent a ton of pics for you guys to get a taste of how it went. Can I just say, planning a wedding is the most stressful thing ever..haha. But we have seen soooooooo many miracles in the process. The registros civil here in Santiago went on strike, so many people can not get married right now. Justo before all of this Juliana and Martin were able to fix a time with the judge to get married. Saturday Oct 3 at 7:30 pm...literally right between the sessions of General Conference here. Our blessed Mission President let us have the reception in the mission office and it was a great opportunity to share the gospel with the friends and family in the reception too! This newly created family already has the goal to go to the temple in a year, and they will be blessing this sector and ward greatly.
Conference was the best!!!!!!!! Love the idea about doing the weekly scripture together as a family. Im in! This cambio I am going to focus my studies in the hope and the gratitude, so probably my selected scriptures will be about that. I love Pres Monson, and I am so thankful for his diligence and faith. I can not even imagine the responsibility and the weight that he holds. I remember saying this last week...how tiring it can be to literally be responsible for the well being of so many people. How weird it would be just to be thinking in the wellbeing of one person. To live the gospel does not mean that we are perfect, but it means that we keep trying and in the process help the people in our sphere of influence.
I can not even explain the blessing and miracles we see every day. The hand of God is in our lives. One simple story that happened this week...we are looking for a new sector to focus in...which means knocking doors. We were knocking doors one morning without any success...until we entered a little passage, and literally the last door in the passage (which was actually a door of a gate with a number) is when God put someone in our hands. Diligence, faith, hope....love it. Another story...we passed by for a young teenager in our sector, when we left we forgot to give her the note from a missionary that had served in the sector before. We felt like we should go back to give her the note in that moment, even though it was something small. Literally 10 seconds after turning around to head back, a man approached us that basically asked us if we could pass by his house the next week because he had seen on the TV something about the temple here in Chile. This is not my work, nor the work of my comp...we are very weak tools in the masters hand to carry about this beautiful work.
Love you guys more than I can express