Sunday, April 27, 2014


Santo Domingo

 Dear Family,

Well, I have some interesting news! I was transferred this week from San Felipe! I am now in Santo Domingo! That was pretty much the furthest thought from my mind! 

I got a call Wednesday night from one of the missionaries and it was a little bit ominous because they were talking to my companion and he told me that they wanted to talk to me. They broke me the news and I didn`t know what to think! I had to get all my stuff packed up that night.  But Elder J. and I made a good time out of it (even if I was super tired the next day). I`m kind of getting expert at having stuff ready to leave at any moment. The next morning the Assistants came in their pickup and dropped me off in Mazate. I was at the change meeting when I saw that they had created this area that I am now in. I with an awesome Elder named Elder B. from Honduras (his family actually lives a couple blocks away from Elder C.'s family, my first companion). He is a super awesome missionary and is a super happy guy. He was the Assistant to the President when I came in the mission so I always looked up to him so I feel pretty lucky to get to be with him for his last month in the mission. 

Santo Domingo is a really cool place! It is a town that is kind of separated from Mazate. You have to take a bus for about 15 minutes through the jungle and then you get to Santo Domingo. Mazate is one of the hotter places in the mission and they say that Santo Domingo is one of the hottest in Mazate! Should be pretty fun! Just walking around I can feel a lot of energy for the work and I am so excited to see the miracles that will come from our hard work. There haven’t been missionaries assigned to Santo Domingo for many years and Elder B. opened up the area a couple months ago. There have been a lot of miracles and we hope to see more! Almost all the members there have recently joined the church and are so excited to share this new happiness and joy with their friends and family! I just feel so blessed to be here!

I know that the Lord has some really great blessings in store for me. I was pretty sad to leave San Felipe because I really grew to love the people as I saw them have a new light in their life and really grow closer to their Savior. I will never be able to thank the Lord for how much he helped me there and how much he taught me through experience. I know that the Lord will keep blessing those people and that their testimonies in the Savior and his atonement will continue to grow. Both young men that I baptized should both be getting the priesthood soon!

I had some interesting experiences this week with getting along with what we have as missionaries. There are a couple little problems with the new house so this week I bathed on the roof, boiled water for food in a frying pan, and used bags of water to wash my hands! I am actually getting pretty good at taking care of normal conveniences with whatever I have. I guess you pretty much learn it all as a missionary. But not to worry, I`ve got everything I need.

The bus that takes us to church.
Here in Santo Domingo we live like 15 minutes from the chapel. What we do is we rent a really big bus and everyone meets up and gets in the bus Sunday morning. It was really fun to see the Santo Domingo members all get together and head to church together in the bus. Everyone just seems really happy! I just know that one day Santo Domingo will get its own chapel. We just have to find the people who will fill it up! We may have a few baptisms this week as we move towards that goal!

We were able to see a video from the church`s `Because of Him` (or in Spanish, `Gracias a El`). How blessed we are to have a Savior who loves us so much that he has freed us from every one of our mistakes and weaknesses. If we let him, he can give us new starts and help us change our hearts. We will live again because of him and what a blessing it is to wear his name and bring people unto him each day. I love him so much and know that through him I will be able to return to my Heavenly Father`s presence.

I am doing great and am so grateful for all the amazing prayers and support of everyone!


Elder Jensen

Crossing a street that flooded with rain. We put little stools in the water to cross.

I have no idea what I just ate!

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Exotic Fruit

Getting mandarin oranges off of a tree of a church member. He has so many types of fruits in his back yard and I think they only exist in his yard because they are so wierd and awesome! Guatemala has so many wierd fruits and everything grows!

Dear Family,

I am never going to be able to thank the Lord for all the many wonderful experiences I have and the amazing blessings I see him pour out upon me and the people who I get to meet each day!

This week we were so blessed to be a part of another baptism! J. was baptized. J. is such a great person and I really am so blessed to have met him. We found him because he is very good friends with a family in the ward. The Family´s name is L. and they have a lot of kids. One day we met him as we were visiting with the L. family and we found out that J. is always with that family. We started to teach him and we saw that he had a really great desire to be baptized just like his friends were. But later people started to tell us that we would never get permission from J.`s parents because missionaries had already tried in the past. One day we came and had the blessing to teach J.´s parents. The Spirit accompanied Elder J. and I very strongly and we taught a very powerful lesson about the Restoration of the gospel. The heart of both parents was softened deeply and they actually felt a strong desire to ask Heavenly Father if the message was true. J.`s dad, T., told us in a later visit that he felt something that he had never felt before. He says that some days in his work he feels very sad and lost and lonely but that he began to pray and ask the Lord for help and he described to us the Spirit and that the Spirit had not only given him an answer about the Restoration, but that it began to accompany him during the day and helped him have positive thoughts and see the world in a new way. After that, both parents began to support J. and help him attend church and eventually be baptized and confirmed. J. even told me that when he prayed to know if the Book of Mormon was true that he felt something very special that he won`t forget. He is anxious to have the priesthood as well as F., our other convert. I felt once again a huge amount of gratitude to the Lord for having been a part of that miracle. It`s almost like we didn`t do anything but just be willing to follow the Spirit and do our best and the Lord led us to him and softened the heart of his family. What a wonderful experience!

I have found that my love for the people is starting to grow more and more each day. I think that it is a huge answer to prayer and something that is helping me so so much! My companion, Elder J., is showing me a whole new way to find and work with people. We do our best to talk to people that are outside of their homes and that have been put on our path to listen to the gospel. We take time to get to know them and really show them that we are the Lord`s representatives. We become friends with everyone we talk to and we really start to feel more love for them. It helps me to focus more on the people we are talking to then on how many lessons I am teaching but really who I am teaching and how the restored gospel can really change their life and bring them to the Savior Jesus Christ. I am so grateful that the Lord trusts me enough to talk to his prepared children and have the chance to invite them to have lives full of happiness and hope. 

We also were able to see the Spirit helping K.`s sister H. K. was baptized two weeks ago and has seen so many great blessings and has a testimony that just keeps growing. She introduced us to her little sister H. a few weeks ago and she has been helping her sister to be able to receive that Spirit that has testified so much to K. We had a lesson this week with both of them where we invited H. to be baptized. I felt that the lesson wasn´t going to great but in that moment the Spirit bore testimony to H. so strongly that she began to cry and really feel and know that this is what the Lord wants her to do so that she can be happy and follow the example of the Savior. It just really showed me that the Spirit is so powerful and so important in this work because it is not the words that we speak that change the hearts of the people, but the Spirit that bears testimony so strongly that that impression can never be forgotten and nothing can separate us from that knowledge and testimony that it gives us.

Just as a side note I think Guatemala has to have some of the best fruit I have ever tasted! It is definitely the promised land because if any sort of seed falls on the ground it will basically just spring out as a tree without any worries! There are like ten types of mangos here and they are all so delicious and not to mention all the other types of fruits that don´t even exist in the states. I think I will be bored with just apples and oranges when I get back.

I know that the Lord is there preparing the hearts of his children to find this happiness that he freely offers us. I know that this work really isn´t the work of the missionaries or the ward but it is the Lord´s work and he directs it. I am so grateful for the testimony I have of the Savior and all that he has done for me. It just makes me want to serve him that much better. 

Thank you for all the amazing support!

Elder Jensen
I couldn´t tell you what this fruit is called. I guess its used to make chocolate or something
Elder L., my CCM companion, got moved to the San Felipe zone! He is in Mulua! We still really hit it off!
Tierra Colorada. This is on the way from San Felipe to Calahuache. It is kind of cool because the houses are on top of each other and the highway runs through the town.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

General Conference

Elder P. and I. Our zone had these shirts made before we were companions and it turned out that we both had the same number 6.

Dear Family,

Hopefully I can find enough time to share all my many experiences this week. The internet was misbehaving so we`ll see if I can fit everything in!
This week was really cool because we got to go to conference. It was a really great experience! The only low note was that the English feed of the conference wasn`t working so the only session I got to watch in English was the last one. I was still able to learn a lot but it is a little bit harder to focus as I was trying to understand the Spanish and also the message. I am also so grateful I will get to study the talks soon when we get the Liahona.   President Ruiz came to San Felipe and encouraged us all to do our best to bring as many people as we could to conference so we were trying really, really hard to bring a lot of people. In between each session we were just searching for people to bring and I was walking around with our house phone doing my best to get people there. Not as people came as I wanted but I really felt like I did my best!
I really felt during conference a huge amount of gratitude for being part of the restored church. As I listened to the prophet and the apostles I was just filled with a feeling that the Church of Jesus Christ really has been restored to the earth and that it is guided by a prophet who really does receive revelation. I felt the spirit so strong as I listened to the messages and I knew without a doubt that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is not made my any man, but is Christ`s church here on the earth.
This week we had the chance to continue teaching three very special people. One of which is the sister of K., named H., who really wants to be baptized. The other is the wife of a less active member. Her name is C. and her husband, E., is a member. She was actually a reference from a member and when we went to visit she instantly recognized us as servants of the Lord and had the desire to be baptized. We had the blessing to see them both in church last Sunday and C. went to conference this Sunday. I really am praying hard for them and really trying to help them understand the importance of living the Lord`s commandments and having a family within the restored gospel. I really hope to see them one day at the temple! I will be working hard for them and also praying for them. 

The other person that we had in conference is a friend of a member and his name is J. He is 12 years old and really wants to be baptized. Yesterday we were able to go to his house and we found both parents and began to talk with them and teach them. We found that they were very, very nice and we had a very powerful lesson about the restoration. I felt the spirit so strong and they really had the desire to pray and know that the message was true and that God has really restored his gospel to the earth. The dad expressed to us that he has felt lost recently and that he really feels far from God. He says that he has been searching for something and I really knew in that moment that he has been prepared and that the Lord really led us there. We also talked to them about J`s desire to be baptized and they gave us permission! That whole lesson was a miracle and I hope to see even more miracles with that family! If everything goes well J. may be baptized this Saturday and hopefully his family afterwards!
I also received a new companion this week. Elder P. headed for his home in Nicaragua and it was hard to see him leave and we had some great last moments with our converts. My new companion is Elder J. He is from Utah (between Provo and Salt Lake). The cool thing is that he is actually half Dominican because his mom is from the Dominican Republic and his dad is from Utah. He could actually understand and speak a little bit of Spanish before the mission so he has really good Spanish. Also he was a gymnast at the University of Nebraska so he is super strong! I have really enjoyed our few days together and I think that we will do some great things here in our area. He has ten months in the mission and I think I will be able to learn a lot from him (just like from my other companions too). 
I can never thank the Lord enough for all the wonderful blessings and experiences that he gives me each and every week. I know that he is watching out for me and also using me as his hands. My testimony of the gospel is always increasing and my love and appreciation of the Savior and his atonement never ceases to grow!
Elder Jensen

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Tarde de Blanca

The 29th we had a tarde de blanca or white afternoon. 7 people were baptized. 

Dear Family,

I have been so incredibly blessed this week! I was blessed to be part of my first two baptisms! I can´t help but feel so grateful to the Lord for the chance to be an instrument in his hand and see all the miracles that made this possible!

This Saturday the 29th K. and F. were baptized! We had already set the date with them last week but the whole week we visited them both each day and kept showing our support and bringing members of the ward to show their support as well! We were able to help K. overcome some of her fear and we had some great spiritual experiences with her as she prayed to here Heavenly Father for courage and an answer to know if what we´ve taught is true. She has a great testimony of how we can recieve answers to our prayers through the Spirit because she has shared some of those experiences with us. Also we were able to see a lot of miracles with F. His parents at first were pretty hesitant about him being baptized this Saturday because I think they don`t want him to fall away from the church as they have. The mom was really unsure about him being baptized. After a lot of prayers and fasts her heart was softened and she was able to see the amazing blessings that were F. was receiving and she was able to see that he was ready to make these covenants with the Lord.

When I look back and think about how we were able to find both F. and K. I realize that it all came through the members! We were able to find the F's family after we decided to seek out the less active families and go to the Bishop to ask who of all the less active families we could visit. That was when were were guided to his home. We found K. as we were contacting houses but we really began to have success when we found that her brother is a member and her mom is also a member. We also visited her a lot with the members and she made some great friendships. She even got up one time to go to seminary which starts here at 5am. I realize that Elder P. and I almost didn´t do anything. It was all the guidance of the Spirit that led us to them and also helped us to lead them to this amazing step in their lifes as they were baptized and confirmed. My testimony really grew that what we missionaries really have to do is work our best to be worthy tools in the hands of the Lord. If we are obedient and worthy and willing to submit to the Lord and be humble, he really will guide us to his prepared children and we will literrally become instruments in his hands and see amazing miracles.

I was also so blessed to be able to perform both ordinances (and also another baptism of the Sisters in San Felipe). The actual service was really cool because 7 people were baptized and 1 of them was from Calahuache, a member of the B. family. There was so much support there and there really was a strong spirit. It was such an amazing experience and I can`t tell you what it did to lift my spirits. I just felt so full of thanks and I wanted to work that much harder after the service to be able to help even more of Heavenly Father`s childrens and keep being an effective tool in the hands of the Lord. I know that if I am willing to give him my all and I keep doing my best to show him that I am worthy of his guidance, I know that I can continue to have amazing experiences like this again.

I am so grateful for this time that I have had in Central - San Felipe with Elder P. and all the amazing things the Lord has taught me. I won`t say that it has been easy but it certainly has been worth it and I wouldn´t trade this time that I`ve had here for anything. I know that our Heavenly Father really is there for us and wants to bless us so so much. If we seek his guidance and really pay attention to the promptings of the Spirit he really will direct our lives for good and we will see so many miracles. I thank the Lord for the chance to serve and to see the Atonement work changes in people´s lives.

Elder Jensen
A talking bird


The street headed for the Church in San Felipe.