The power to feel….How cool!

Hola familia mía!

What a week! We spent the week planning and prepping for an activity that we did on Friday. And as I think on the activity, I think of Taylor and Logan. Remember how they used to find some bizarre pleasure out of belly flopping? And it almost hurt to watch them do it, but at the same time, it was kinda funny. I thought of that when the activity flopped too. Haha we had a “Noche de Cine” in the church building and it was aalllllmost super awesome. We had a projector that we borrowed from President Madariaga, blankets on the ground, a sheet on the wall for the screen, and we were all set to watch the Testaments. I also made doughnuts, and they turned out alright! I was pretty excited- I’ve never made them before. It was like a little bit of home. 🙂
Hna Van Dusen came with her parents (they came to pick her up and have been travelling around Paraguay for a few days) and they brought a BUNCH of candy from the states so we put that all out too. They also brought some sour punch straws and chocolate frosting, so I’m a super happy camper. Anywho, everything was all ready to go… and we couldn’t get the audio to work…. Not cool! So we ended up watching the movie on the t.v. from the capilla. We couldn’t really hear or understand very well, and I was a little bummed. But I decided halfway through that I was going to feel the Spirit anyway. And I did. It’s incredible what the Spirit can do, even though things don’t seem to work out just right. I was able to feel the love of my Savior for me and for all the people in that room.
Yesterday in my personal study, I was reading the beginning of Mosiah,when King Benjamin begins his discourse from the tower. There’s a little part in one of the verses that says that many of the people couldn’t hear because there were so many people. And I thought about that for a while. Surely there were people that were bummed because they had been so excited to travel to the temple to hear the prophet speak, just to find out that they wouldn’t be able to hear his words. Surely there were some people that got a little frustrated. But surely the people were able to feel the Spirit and feel the power that was there as they were on holy ground in the presence of a prophet of God. And that matters more, doesn’t it? I think that so often, we focus more on what we can see, hear, or touch, and forget to focus in on what we feel. That is what will have a greater significance for us in our lives. That’s what will guide us home to our Heavenly Father. But anyway, that’s what I learned this weekend. 🙂 That the Spirit is the most important- if we have the Spirit with us, it will rule out any disappointment, discouragement, fear, or sadness. Because it carries with it the love of God.
Well, time is short and I’ve gotta boogie. Thanks for all that you do and all you are! I love you all more than a lot!
Hasta la proxima,
Hermana Pinguino
P.s. Thanks for all the missionary updates! It’s super crazy to think that so many missionaries are coming home already! How’s Allyssa doing? Also, I’ve got some hugs for you to give out for me- One for grandma when she comes up, one for Sister Pollock (I recently got a letter from her- I say thanks and that I appreciate her letters!), one for Amanda (I’m glad to hear that she’s doing so well- thanks for the updates!), and one for each one of you. 🙂 Thanks a million!
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Livin’ the Villa Hayes dream…


Hey, all!

First off- thanks a million for the doughnut recipe! I´m pretty excited to try ´em out. It should be lots of fun 🙂 You´d be proud- I made fried chicken today with garlic mashed potatoes. It was fantastic. All I needed was a little bit(a lot) of gravy. It was quite the experience though… We bought a whole chicken so we had to cut it up…. and we found that they stuffed the head and the feet inside of the chicken…. They were in a little plastic bag with the talon poking out and the eye looking right at us… Do they do that in the states….? Haha it almost made me second think eating lunch.. But not quite. I feel like weird things with my food don´t phase me as much as it would at home. When you´ve gotta eat, you´ve gotta eat! We ate cow stomach in a lunch appointment last week… yum…. Haha I love this place more and more every day.
Super purete! We found some really awesome investigators this last week. We found a 24 year old guy Friday named Ariel. We only shared with him a little bit and he accepted a baptismal date and came to church yesterday. He´s looking for lots of answers and has been super prepared to hear the message of the Restored Gospel. Yesterday at church, he told my companion that he feels like he´s in the camino correcto and that he was going to be finding lots of answers in the church. Super cool. And the members of the branch really picked it up yesterday with the investigators we had in church. We had 5 people come, and every one of them had somebody befriend them. If that´s not a miracle, I really don´t know what is. We also had consejo de rama last night, and it actually functioned! Man, it was so cool. We talked about our investigators and they offered help in working with them. We also started planning an activity that we´re gonna do in a few weeks. We´re gonna have a movie night and watch The Testaments. We´re planning on inviting the whole world and having a box of copies of The Book of Mormon for afterward. We´re all pretty excited about it.
I loved your little bit about salt and grace. Super cool. I´m gonna work on speaking with grace seasoned with salt this week too. Good thing the salt in this case signifies Christ because I always tend to oversalt thin
gs until I get canquer(sp?) sores all over.
I´ve been getting super into the New Testament this last week. In my personal study I´m studying part in The Book of Mormon and part in the Bible. This week, I got into the Isaiah chapters of 2 Nephi, and in Spanish, so I didn´t get a whole lot of what was going on in there. So I´ve been loving my New Testament reading. I´m coming to realize how cool the Bible is- how cool it is that we have in our hands an account of the life of our Savior. We can read His words, read of the things He did, and learn directly from Him. I think that´s why I love 3 Nephi so much. You just get to learn from His words and actions directly. I´m doing my Therefore chart again, and it´s super cool seeing how everything can apply to my life right now. It almost makes me wonder if Christ was impressed to do certain things or if other people experienced certain things just so we could learn from them. I would say yes. I´m learning a lot about how the Lord really does know it all. He has a specific plan for each of us and knows exactly what we need and when. How cool is it to have the perfect, all-knowing God of all things as a Father?
Anywho, I best be off. Thanks for being the coolest family of my life. 🙂 Good luck with this super crazy week! Just keep swimming, just keep swimming, what do we do? We swim, swim….
Love you lots!
Hermana Pingel 🙂
P.s. Badmitton is seriously in the Olympics? That´s so rad. I didn´t even realize the Olympics were going on until the other day when someone was watching ´em. I was suddenly filled with a little bit of Yankee pride because someone from the states was getting ready for the shot put or algo.
P.s. again- I attached a few pictures we got today of the Rio Paraguay. And the cows on  the beach.. Super fantastic!

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Feliz Dia de la Amistad!

Hola to all! And Happy Friendship day! Haha I love Latin holidays.. Everybody here is buying stuffed animals and mugs and little cards and wishing everybody a feliz día. Haha what a lovely day.

Awesome news! We had another miracle baptism yesterday! And it was AWESOME! There{s a family in the branch that consists of the dad and his three kids- one girl that{s twelve and two boys, 10 and 8. The dad was inactive for a while, so his kids didn{t get baptized. But before I got to Villa Hayes, he reactivated and is now one of the strongest members in the branch, if not THE strongest. His older son got baptized a couple months ago, so we visit them a lot to teach the lessons over again.
The daughter, Monica, got baptized in the Catholic church a while ago because her grandma is super catholic and she lives with her next door to her dad. When I first came, she didn{t really like to share with us or go to church. She only did it because her dad pretty much made her. But as time passed, she started to enjoy sharing with us and became involved in Young Womens. But every time that we talked about baptism, she{d just close right up and tell us she already got baptized. But a few weeks ago, she told us that she was thinking about getting baptized. So we cracked down and really started focusing on her, trying to help her understand the doctrine of the Restoration, Priesthood authority, etc. But she was still really wishy washy about it.


This last Thursday, we went and visited her and read 3 Nephi 11 with her. Powerhouse chapter, by the way. Love it. The Spirit just whooshes in when you read the account of Christ appearing to the Nephites and the people praising Him, and then He goes right into baptism. It{s the best. Anyway, we talked about how Christ showed us exactly how we need to get baptized and explained that we weren{t inviting her to get baptized again, but to get baptized for the first time by somebody that has the authority to do it. Something clicked with her and she suddenly just got it. She said she wanted to get baptized on the 5th, but we have a mission goal of having each companionship have one baptism each month… So I asked if maybe she wanted to this weekend…. And she chose Sunday after church. 🙂 It was so cool. From the second that she made the decision and said she was going to get baptized, there was a change in her. Before, when I first came, I didn{t see her smile much. But since Thursday, I feel like a smile hasn{t left her face.
She was so excited to get in that water. And as I stood there watching her in the font, I just thought about the countless prayers that were being answered in that moment. Not just by me or my companion, but by countless other missionaries before. Missionaries have been working with her for years.
I learned something this weekend. I learned about trusting in the Lord{s timing. God has a plan and He knows how things need to be and when. And everything will always work out the way He wants it. I{m just super grateful that I was blessed to be able to be there when the timing was right. I love this girl. 🙂


Well, I{m sorry it{s so short. But know that I love you all a ton, and I appreciate immensely all the prayers and support. I can feel it from all the way over here. 🙂 And a late Happy Birthday to Dad and Adam! I{ll bring you your birthday presents….. In about a year… 😉 Love ya!
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Pingel
P.s. Today is my 8 month mark…. weird, right?
P.s. again- I attached a picture of Hna. Estigarribia, Hna. Navas and I- our 3 generation shot! Fun stuff. 🙂
P.s. again- I don{t have the source for the quote…. I just have it… But isn{t it awesome?!?! 🙂


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Surprise! It’s a girl!

Hey, all!

Man, I tell you what… It´s been quite a week! We had changes last week… And I´m training! If that wasn´t a super huge suprise, I don´t know what would be. Haha it was funny- Monday night, the elders called to let us know about changes and when Hna. Van Dusen told me, I pretty much just left the room to go pray. ¨Heavenly Father…… I can´t train…….¨ I was sad to see Hna. Van Dusen go this last week, she finishes up in a few weeks and I was looking forward to killing her off… 😉 She´s super cool. I´ve learned a TON from her over the last three months. I look forward to seeing her again in Rexburg after the mission.

My hija´s name is Hermana Navas and she´s from Honduras. And…. I understand about 60 percent of what she says…. Dang. I´m still not super great with the language yet, and she speaks a lot differently than Paraguayos do. But she´s super buena and is really excited to work. Which is good because that´s all I know how to do. I´m excited to be working with her and learning together.
I´m learning a lot this week.

The first few days after my hija came were kinda tough. I just kept worrying about how I just feel super inadequate and unqualified to train. With a snap of the fingers, I went from being with my second companion in my 4th change to suddenly being trained and having the weight of all of Villa Hayes on my shoulders. Basically, I was just feeling pretty lost and alone. But in my personal study, I read a talk that President Madariaga gave us that is super awesome. It´s called The Fourth Missionary. It talks about the four different types of missionaries and how we can become the fourth missionary, or the missionary that consecrates himself completely to the Lord. It talks a lot about surrendering our will to the Lord so that He can change us. Change is the ultimate purpose of the Gospel and of this life. And the Lord is the only one that can change us. BUT He´s never going to do that against our will. So we have to give ourselves completely to Him so that change can take place.

I also read a scripture that Hna. Van Dusen recently shared with me- Alma 29:6, which says, ¨Now, seeing that I know these things, why should Idesire more than to perform the work to which I have been called?¨ And I would add, ¨why should I desire less?¨ I´ve done a lot of pondering about what it means to put the will of the Lord first. And I´m learning a lot about putting my trust in Him. That´s the only intelligent thing to do. Granted, I have no idea why the Lord wants me to train. But I know that He does. I know that He has a plan for each and every one of us. And through His grace, we can be changed to become who He wants us to become. We just have to seek that grace and do our part. I´m seeing that as we do, we can see and feel that divine help and strength in every day of our lives.

I read a quote by President Henry B. Eyring that basically sums up what I learned this week. He said, ¨I am part of the fellowship of the unashamed. The dye has been cast. I have stepped over the line. The decision has been made. I am a disciple of Jesus Christ. I won´t look back, let up, slow down or be still. My past is redeemed, my present makes sense, and my future is secure. I´m finished and done with low-living, small planning, smooth knees, color-less dreams, tamed visions, worldly talking, cheap giving, and dwarfed goals. I no longer need pre-eminence, positions, promotions, plaudits, or popularity. I don´t have to be right, first, recognized, praised regarded, or rewarded. I now live by faith, lean on His presence, walk with patience, am uplifted by prayer and labor with power. My road is narrow, my way is rough, my companions are few, my guide is reliable, my mission is clear. I cannot be bought, compromised, detoured, lured away, divided, or delayed. I will not flinch in the face of sacrifice, hesitate in the presence of adversity, negotiate at the table of the enemy, ponder at the pool of popularity, or meander in the maze of mediacy. I won´t give up, shut up, or let up until I have stayed up, stored up and paid up for the cause of Christ. I must go till He comes, give till I drop, preach till all know and work till He stops me. And when He returns for His own, He will have no problem recognizing me. My banner will be clear.¨ And so begins a new chapter for me in the streets of Villa Hayes. I´m ready to give it all so I can become who the Lord would have me be. What an incredible blessing that we have been given to be able to have that divine assistance in every step of our lives, if we allow ourselves to receive it, that is.
I hope that you all have a wonderful week and know that someone in Paraguay loves you a lot. 🙂
Muchísimo amor,
Hermana Pingel

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Tender mercies galore!

Hola, familia mia!
It´s been a crazy week! We´ve been working really hard to find lots of new people to teach. When our family moved away, we realized that we didn´t really have hardly any other investigators. We were just super swallowed up in helping them figure out the gospel. Which isn´t necessarily bad, but we weren´t taking advantage of other opportunities to find people and help them really progress. So although our hearts hurt a bit, we tried to really kick it into gear and work harder, and Heavenly Father showered us with tender mercies throughout the week.


We´ve started teaching some really cool people that have baptismal dates and are already progressing pretty well. One girl, Genesis, came to church yesterday and loved it (another tender mercy that she could look past the fact that there wasn´t anybody in church). She said that she´s going to come every Sunday because she loved it so much. It was awesome. 🙂 Another tender mercy- we´ve been working with a family with some little boys that were recently baptized. Their older sister is twelve and isn´t a member, but she always comes to church and loves to share with us. But her grandma and her mom hate the church and have hardened her up about baptism. Every time we mentioned it, she would just say, ¨I´ve already been baptized.¨ So we hadn´t really made any progress with her at all. But on Monday, we went to share with them and the dad told us that Monica wanted to be baptized! We asked her about it and she said she was thinking about it. Super tender mercy. We´re working with her now and she has a tentative baptismal date scheduled. Super cool!


We´ve also started teaching some other girls that are really smart and really receptive to the things we´ve shared. And ironically enough, they´re both teenage moms… But I´m really excited to keep teaching them. They love it so far.
On Tuesday we went to Mariano for our district meeting, and some of the youth from the ward there threw a surprise birthday party afterward. 🙂 Haha it was super awesome. The girl who orchestrated the whole thing is 20 and just sent in her mission papers. She goes with me on splits all the time and she´s super awesome. They made some pizza and cake, which made all the Elders pretty happy. Haha it was pretty awesome. Haha it was funny- they got a Tinkerbell party hat for me because they said that I look like her. Haha what..? I love that they think anybody from the states looks blonde…

On Thursday, we had our lunch appointment with the branch president´s family like always, and they were super funny. Their 18 year old girl(who is also the Young Womens president) made a little cake, and after she brought it out, they kicked the party up a few notches. You know how on keyboards, they have demo music? Songs like Silent Night, Yankee Doodle, and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star? Bueno, they busted out their keyboard and played the demo songs while we ate the cake. Hahaha I love Paraguay more and more every single day. 🙂

Speaking of the branch president´s family- we went over to their house on Saturday to do a little service. They´re adding another room to their house, and we offered our help, so we got to build a house this weekend! I´m almost as cool as Ben and Michelle. 😉 It was funny- President taught us how to do it and then just gave us full reins and went off to do some other stuff. So we learned how to make the cement mixture and laid a few rows of bricks. It was pretty fun. 🙂

I really liked the paragragh you started your letter with. Haha I just read it and laughed as I thought about church yesterday… We did have two investigators in church yesterday, which was awesome. Haha there were more nonmembers than members in Young womens. We actually only had 27 people in church yesterday, which is the lowest I´ve ever seen. Villa Hayes is struggling a bit. We´re not entirely sure how to really help the rama here, but we´re definitely trying. I´m pretty sure the speakers all spoke true doctrine.. I spoke for twenty minutes and then the next speaker just read straight from the gospel doctrine manual, so yeah, everything she said was approved by the church. The pianist/primary president actually didn´t show up to church (she had to do her laundry), so we sang a capella (did I spell that right? I honestly have no idea. Any way I try to spell it, it looks weird, especially while thinking spanish). I made Hna Van Dusen lead because my eyes are bugging me again and I didn´t want to, but I did sing at the top of my lungs to help keep everybody kind of on track. As for singing at a lively tempo…. Haha all hope was lost. I love the church experience here. 🙂


I spoke about Jesus Christ and basically just shared story time. I shared some stories of Christ and the things we can learn about Him and His involvement in our daily lives. First I shared the story about feeding the 5,000 and how when we comje to Christ we´re filled. Also that, like the 5 loaves and 2 fishes, Christ can make us more than we are. Although we may feel inadequate or lack the strength we need, through Jesus Christ, we can become who we need to become. The second story was of the woman with the blood disease that touched His robe and was healed. I talked about how the Lord is aware of us although we may feel like one person among a crowd of thousands of others. Also that through the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can be healed of any weakness, pain, sin, anything. Through Him, we are made whole. The last story was of Christ appearing to the Nephites and the invitation that He makes to all of us today. Still today, He invites us to arise and come forth to Him, to arise from the standards and norms of the world, to stand a little taller and come to Christ that we may receive the fulness of the blessings that He has to give us. I felt the Spirit so strongly as I was able to stand there and just testify of my Savior and Redeemer. And once again, that Spirit testified to me of Jesus Christ- of who He is, of what He has done for me, and of what I can become because of Him. I know that He lives. I know that He loves us. And like you said in your letter, that is the best knowledge that we can have. And that´s why I´m here.  🙂
I love you all more than fresh, warm chipa!
Muchísimo amor,
Hermana Pingel

P.s. I hope that everybody at home appreciates your seminary jokes like I do. They´re too fantastic.
P.p.s. Knock knock….
P.p.p.s. Could you tell Gramma I say thanks a million for the birthday money? And that I love her lots? Thanks! 🙂

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Good Bye…what a ridiculous word.

Hola familia-

I´m gonna warn you right now that this email may not be very long.. We´re super short on time. It´s kinda been a super crazy day today. We ran out of gas this morning for our stove, so we had to get that figured out. And then our shower heater burnt out, and we had to get that all fixed. And then we finally got out to Mariano (we went ice skating. Who knew you do that in Paraguay?) a little late. We finally got home and then realized
 that I lost the keys… So that was another adventure in itself. So anyway, now we´re finally here in the cyber with a few minutes to share the happenings of the week. Luckily, I actually don´t have a whole lot to share, so it all kinda works out. 🙂
Thanks to everybody for the birthday wishes! It was great to hear from all y´all. I hope you all know how much I love and appreciate every one of you. 🙂 I hope you have some cake on Thursday. 🙂
Sad news- our family moved to the chaco. 🙁  We called them Saturday morning to see if we could visit them that night and Enrique told us that they were going to be moving the next day so they´d be packing all night. Oh man. I´ve never been punched in the heart, but I think I know how it feels now. We were just in shock. We went over to say goodbye and take pictures with them. I attached some of ´em. I was really worried because out in the chaco, the church is pretty much nonexistent. There aren´t even missionaries in most of it. I was worried because they´re finally to the point to where they
´re super excited to be baptized and really are starting to grasp the gospel. Shyrley was literally counting down the days until Thursday when she could get baptized. But in the chaco, they wouldn´t be able to be baptized. They wouldn´t have the constant nourishment that they need. But the Lord always knows what He´s doing. The mom and dad and the 3 year old girl are going to go out and live in the chaco, and the other four are going to go live with their grandma in the south mission for a while so they can still study. They already know where the church is down there, and we´re going to send the missionaries directly to their house. The girls will be able to get baptized soon, and it will be in a place where the church is more established and the members are much stronger. So in the long run, it will be a blessing for them to be able to have that good strong support. I´m learning a lot about putting my trust in the Lord. The other night, I just had to kneel down and tell the Lord that they´re completely in H
is hands now, and I´ve gotta trust that everything will work out. I just look forward to the day that they can enter into the temple of the Lord and come out as an eternal family. I know it´ll come- now it´s just a matter of the Lord´s timing. It was really cool though when we went to say good-bye. Rosana, the mom, told us, ¨There´s no way that I´m going to forget the two of you. You helped me know the church and the Book of Mormon.¨ I´m super grateful to my Heavenly Father for allowing me the blessing of meeting and being a part of this wonderful family.
Anywho, I hope that you all have a really awesome week. I love you all lots and lots. 🙂
Con amor,
Hermana Pingel
P.s. Lettuce…. come in? Nosotras somos misioneras de la Iglesia de Jesucristo y tenemos un mensaje de esperanza y del amor de Dios. ¿Será que podemos pasar y compartir con ustedes?
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Un Dios de Milagros


What a week! Here´s the deal- We had a goal as a mission to have every companionship baptize and confirm in the month of June. So as a mission, we´ve been praying and fasting to be able to acheive that. Hermana Van Dusen and I were struggling a lot this month, trying to help somebody be ready to be baptized in June, but nothing was coming of it. A few weeks back, we found somebody and had a date set for the 23rd, but then she ended up hiding from us and we never got to meet with her again. Lame. Up until last Monday, we still didn´t have anybody to be baptized before the end of the month. It was kinda rough. But then on Monday night, we were teaching our family about baptism, and the 11 year old girl, Larissa, piped up and said, ´I´m getting baptized on Saturday.¨ Haha Hermana Van Dusen and I just stopped and stared at each other for a second. The whole family has only gone once, but Larissa and one of the others, Virginia, have gone 3 or 4 times, and the rule is that investigators have to attend church at least three times before getting baptized. We have no idea what made her decide that Saturday, the last day of the month, was the day she wanted to get baptized, but she really wanted to. The only one that could have put that idea in her head was God, the One who heard us praying constantly to find somebody to get baptized in June. Her parents were totally cool with it, so she got baptized and confirmed on Saturday! It was so cool! My testimony of prayer is growing more and more. And my testimony of the love of God is growing as well. I love reading in the Book of Mormon, and there´s a scripture I´ve always liked, but never really understood until now. 2 Nephi 27:23 says, ¨For behold, I am God, and I am a God of miracles, and I will show unto the world that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever, and I work not among the children of men save it be according to their faith.¨ My God is a God of miracles. We just have to have faith and make the choice to see miracles be wrought.
We´ve had a pretty awesome week with our family. We started teaching them the commandments because we had to help Larissa get ready for her baptism. We taught them the Word of Wisdom earlier in the week, and we weren´t quite sure how it would go down because they drank coffee every morning and night. But we just taught it to them and they committed to living it as if we had just asked them to go flip the light switch or something. Awesome! Rosana, the mom, told us as we were leaving, ¨I´ve gotta go throw away all the coffee!¨ We brought them some chocolate powder the next day to switch it out, and there wasn´t even a little bit of coffee in the house! OH MAN! I love them so much! Shyrley, the oldest, is suddenly just on FIRE with the gospel. Yesterday at church, she told Hna Van Dusen, ¨I don´t know what happened to me. I´m just so happy! I´m just so excited to get baptized!¨ She then went on to tell us that she only has one more Sunday until she can get baptized. And she tells everybody that she´s going to go on a mission. 🙂 So she´s pretty much set to get baptized on the 12th. It´s gonna be a super great day. 🙂 We´re trying to figure out what´s going on with the others though.. Rosana and Virginia have some doubts that we can´t quite figure out. They don´t really have a date set because they just aren´t set on it like Larissa and Shyrley. Not really sure. Lots of prayers are going up for them these days.
Sounds like things are going great at home! Hahaha I loved the little blips from everybody. It´s funny- when Taylor was talking about eating a snake, I wasn´t as grossed out as I would have been 6 months ago. Sometimes I just don´t ask what kind of meat is in whatever I´m eating…
Mom. I have so much shame about the ´their´. I even looked in my sent mail to double check. Yer rite. Gross. As for the punctuation, the keyboard was dumb. I have no excuses though for the horrible grammar mistake. I´m gonna go repent of that tonight.
Mom. I got so super excited when you said you were helping the sister missionaries out! Haha I fist pumped. That´s what we need out here.. the members could make such a huge impact if they really caught the vision of the gospel.
Hey!  Great news I learned recently! Remember Pablo from Mariano? He´s filling out mission papers!!!!!!!!!!! Gahhh!! Oh man, I´m so so so so excited about him going on a mission, it´s a little ridiculous! He´s going to be so awesome!
I´ve been pondering a lot lately about our Heavenly Father and my personal relationship to Him as His daughter. I find myself thinking about what it must have been like as I was preparing to come down to earth. I´m sure that I had a moment alone with my Father before leaving His presence. What did He say? What did He do? What did I promise to do? The thought and the image in my head helps me refocus, especially when I pray. It´s really something incredible, isn´t it? The God of the earth, the universe, everything, is our Father. He loves us. He desperately wants us to choose to come back to live with Him. And He´s given us everything that we need to get there. We have purpose. We have potential. We have the way prepared for us. The rest is just up to us to decide to walk the path, partaking of His love in our lives. I just love this Gospel so much. It´s perfect. And it´s changing lives- those of the people we teach as well as my own. What an incredible blessing!
I love you all so much! Have a wonderful week full of Paraguayan colors and lots of burgers ´n hot dogs!
Los quiero mucho,
Hermana Pingel
P.s. Who´s there?
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Hey there, hi there, ho there!

Great to here from ya! You must have been up early this morning… Seminary teacher….. 🙂 Sounds like things are going well- that{s so awesome about the temple! Number one about the names that you were able to take to the temple. I{m learning more about the importance of temple work. It{s basically missionary work- for people on the other side of the veil! So cool! And number two for the temple lilacs. Yay! I was thinking about lilacs the other day… Love em. 🙂
Way to go with the running thing! That{s super awesome! There was a week a while back when we went running every morning along the Rio Paraguay. Super fantastic. But it{s been a while. Sometimes we go over to the cancha by our house and play futbol for a bit, which is fun too.
Haha let{s see if I can answer all of those questions….
1. My missionary Paraguayan life is good! Sometimes I come out of a lesson and it hits me again that I{m a missionary for the Lord Jesus Christ and I just smile. I{m pretty sure I have the best job on the planet.
2. The companionship is super great. Hermana Van Dusen is an awesome missionary and I{m learning a lot from her. She leaves in the middle of August so her time is running short. We{re working hard and getting along really really well.
3. The work is moving along. It{s been kind of slow lately, but that{s okay. We{re starting to find more people to teach, and we{re excited about the prospects. Our biggest focus is on the family that we{re teaching, but I{ll talk about them later. But things are going well. The members are starting to help more, so that{s super awesome. It{s been a little hard because the branch is so little and kind of unstable. We{ve been averaging 32 people in church the last few weeks, and there{s only a certain number of members that you could really call active. But even then, they don{t quiiiite get it. We passed the Relief Society President buying empanadas yesterday right after church… It{s a process… But we had branch council last night, and it actually kind of functioned! Haha it{s the second time we{ve had it, and the first time was a straight up disaster. I also got to finally meet the ward mission leader last night, which was pleasant. He hasn{t gone to church in months. Haha that about sums up our little branch. But I love it. 🙂
4. The weather isn{t bad right now. It{s winter right now, so it has cooled down a lot. For the most part it{s fine when the sun is out, but as soon as it{s gone, it{s just cold to the bone.
5. The food is still super delicious. I{m working on learning how to make some different things Paraguay style to enlighten your taste buds in a year. Prepare to be amazed!
6. The food hasn{t really changed much from Mariano. A little, but not a lot. The food in Mariano was a little bit more chuchi, and we had a lunch appointment every day of the week. Here, we only have two, so we{re make our own food a lot. And then sometimes we go grab something. But for the most part, the food{s the same.
7. White. All the rice is as white as I am. But… I{m enjoying it….. I stilll won{t make it if I have the choice, but I enjoy it when we go to a lunch appointment and I have a plate of rice and chicken. Yumtastic.
So there ya go. 🙂 Life is good here in ol Paraguay.
We{re working a lot with our family to help them catch the vision of the gospel. They really like to share and love it when we come over. They read the Book of Mormon every day and pray every night individually and as a family. But they{ve been a little flojos in attending church. They{ve only come once, and they didn{t come yesterday so they{re baptismal date dropped. We were really really bummed. But progress is being made. We watched Finding Faith in Christ with them the other night and it was super cool. I love that movie. I always feel so uplifted after watching it. They were pretty into it too. One of the girls, Shyrley, told us that she feels like she wants to put her trust more in God after watching it. Awesome. 🙂 We had a really good lesson with them last night, and they seemed to be much more into it as we talked about the blessing of repentance in our lives. We{re gonna go visit them tonight and talk about baptism. We feel like they have a few doubts about baptism because they don{t quite have that fire to be baptized yet. But we{re excited to go over it with them. We{re gonna set another baptismal date for the 12 of July. 🙂
Well, I love you all tons and tons. I love what I{m doing so much. I love that I can introduce myself as a representative of Jesus Christ. I love that I can watch people grow in their faith and help them take steps to coming to Christ. And I{m learning more and more every day who He is. I{m reading in Jesus the Christ and loving every second of it. Things that I didn{t understand before are beginning to really make sense as I figure out just a little bit more about Him and what He did for me and what He continues to do for me every day. I love this Gospel that allows us to come to Him and receive His love more fully in our lives. I love the sweet feelings that enter into my heart when I can testify of that love for each person individually. I love life. 🙂 I hope that you all have a fantastic week- last one in June! Live it up! Give some references to the missionaries!
Los quiero demasiado mucho!
Hermana Pingel
P.s.:Fun fact- My hair is curly. I{ve found that if I leave it down or in a pony tail or something, it just curls right up real fast. Honestly, it looks like I used a curling iron. Which is fun, because those have never worked out for me. Haha there ya go- the random p.s. of the day.. Love ya!

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Happy Monday back atcha!

Hola Familia!
It´s been a pretty good week. We´re struggling a little bit wtih the area, but it´s good. We´re working hard and trying to do all that we can to get the Gospel of Jesus Christ in the hearts of the people here. We´re teaching this girl, Sol, who has been meeting with the missionaries for a long time. She really wants to get baptized, but still hasn´t gotten permission from her mom. We set a date with her to be baptized on the 23rd of this month, and have been offering up a whole lot of prayers and fasted with her to be able to receive permission to be baptized. Her mom doesn´t really like the church and isn´t very open to the idea. Last night she asked her mom again, and she said no. I´m a little sad about it, because she really wants to get baptized. But I´m also super grateful becasue the Lord still answered our prayers. The answer wasn´t exactly what we wanted, but God softened her heart. She said that she wants some more time to think about it and that she wants her to mature more i n the church first. That´s definitely progress, so I´m grateful. She´ll get baptized soon, and I just hope that I´ll be able to see the day that she enters the waters of baptism.
Hermana Van Dusen is making me act as senior companion this week to get a different feel for the work, and although I complained a little bit… it´s turning out to be a good experience. I´m learning a lot about the work that goes into missionary work- planning, coordinating, leading, etc. So it´s good. We´ll just see how it goes… Haha we´re just hoping I don´t lose the phone this week! 😉
No need to worry about the eyes- we´re back on track! It´s pretty much just a week long thing every time and then we´re good to go. It´s just weird that it´s happening more frequently over the last year or two. Bizarre.
Anywho, sorry about the short little baby letter. I hope that you all have a super great week and know that there´s a girl down in Paraguay that loves you lots!
Paz y bendiciones,
Hermana Pingel

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Feliz Cumple!

Hey family! And Happy Birthday, Katie! I would write it to you in Guarani, but it’s the hardest language ever to write. So I will just leave it up to your imagination. I hope you had a fabulous day! 19…? How bizarre… Felicidades!

Man, it’s so crazy that another year of school has already come and gone. Everybody is getting so old! But it sounds like everybody’s got some good plans for the summer to keep busy. Sounds like it’ll be a good few months. 🙂
It’s super crazy down here… It’s like somebody just flipped a switch and it got freezing cold over this last week. We hit 2 degrees celsius the other day. What in the world? SO COLD! Haha but it’s a great experience…
This last week was a little rough on the work. Like I said before, we decided to basically stop working in most of the sectores in the area and focus in on two. So this last week was basically like starting over. We dropped a ton of investigators and just had to start fresh. It’s been a little tough, but it’s been good too. We’ve found some pretty cool people and we’re really excited to teach them. The only thing is that my eyes went totally crazy on me this week which was a problem. It made it a little hard in lessons because I haven’t been able to look directly at things/people… Haha street contacting was interesting…. It was really frustrating because we had to spend so much time in the house this week and I really wanted to be out working. I got more than a little impatient with myself… but it’s okay. I’m learning lots about depending on the Lord and being patient when things don’t go the way I want them to. I don’t know what the deal is though… I feel like the eye episode things are happening a lot more frequently than they have before. Oh well. Whaddya do?
Great news! Our family came to church yesterday!!!! And they loved it! Gah! I’m just still so ridiculously excited about it! Well, almost the whole family came. Enrique ended up going to the chaco to work last week, but he’ll be back at the end of this month. Haha he even called us yesterday to tell us that like a week after we found out he left. Haha oh man, I LOVE this family so much. They’re incredible. I forgot to tell you- one of the pictures I sent home last week was of them. The mom’s name is Rosana, and the kids are Shyrley(15), Virginia(13), Larisa(11), Dani(8), and Damari(3). And they’re awesome! Damari is so cute. She pretty much only speaks guarani because that’s what they speak in the house. She understands castellano, but guarani is all that comes out of her mouth. Haha so she always comes up to us and whispers something in guarani with her big eyes and I just have to laugh because I think of Finding Nemo. “Look, you’re really cute. But I don’t have any idea what you’re saying!” I love teaching them. They’re so open and so excited every time we come over. We’ve started just reading with them out of the Book of Mormon with them every other lesson and yesterday we had them act out the story of Nephi as we read. Haha it was the best thing of my life. We moved their baptismal date back because they still need more church attendance and Rosana feels like she needs more time. The girls are getting there though. They told us the other day that they feel like they got their answers to their prayers and feel like the Book of Mormon is true. Awesome! But we moved their date back to July 7th. I’m super stoked- It’s gonna be the best birthday ever!
Kinda cool- We had a lesson last night with a kid named Alfredo, and for me, it was a really awesome experience. He’s a really curious kid and has all sorts of questions. He’s studied a lot about lots of different religions and the history of the world and just doesn’t get why there are so many different concepts and views of religion around the world. He talked about the Bible and how everybody seems to have their own version of it that just suits them and their wants. As I testified of the Book of Mormon and the Restauration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, it just became so much more real for me. God is so all-knowing and so perfect that He knew that people would change the Bible. He knew that things would be taken out. He knew that people would interpret things differently. So he had a back-up plan. He sent a family to the Americas. He called prophets. He had them write the doctrine of Christ. He sent His Son to go to the Americas Himself to teach and guide the people. He had a prophet put all of those writings into one book, without taking away a single plain and precious truth. And then he called another prophet to put that book into our hands so we wouldn’t be lost in a world of confusion. How incredible is our Heavenly Father’s plan and His love? It covers everything- every question, every person, every situation. Really, it is everything. It was really cool to be able to feel the Spirit testify to me the truthfulness of the message that I’m sharing in the moment that I testified of it. What a blessing to be a part of this wonderful work!
I love you all and hope all is well! Go get ’em!
Con mucho amor,
Hermana Pingel
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