Monday, July 28, 2014

So much to do, so little time, July 28, 2014

This is gonna be short. Sorry bout it. There is just absolutely no way to have time, or be able to sum up how it is and everything that Im doing. So, Ill try a little:

Food: good, lunch with members, and 
Companion: Guatemala, Hna. Carias, awesome, convert, last transfer here, just recieved news that she will be staying till the end of the change, hallelujah
Investigators with potential: Family with mom member, dad and kids no, hopefully baptism in three weeks, dad has work on Sundays so cant go to church, thats the problem, but I love them.
Other investigators: hard to keep committments or accept doctrine, we are in the process of looking for new investigators too, which means a ton of walking because our area is huge and has a billion hills.
Language: coming, they change their words sometimes according to my size, so I never know if they´re using real words that I can use too, or if its just for me. haha. I teach about a third of the time in our lessons, which is awesome, it is just hard to understand them.
Apartment: Good, far away from everything we need to do
Feet: good
Dogs: everywhere
Fleas: none
Weather: kinda cold, but I'm warm
Ward: long story... they´re good, we need active ward missionaries haha

How I feel? Im in super-plan mode. 

Love you all so much! I know that´s super boring... you were warned. 

Oh! Everyone is excited that we can now have English classes that I'm going to teach twice a week, and investigators, less actives, and everyone else is really excited for that. First one tomorrow!

It´s nice to know that I´m in the right place, at the right time, doing the right thing. It is very hard to know exactly how to do those things, and to have patience with myself while I learn to do new things. The planning and studying is awesome, and of course, Ive been used to that for my whole life. The hard part is working with other people in a language that I can speak but can´t understand, and trying to coordinate with other people. Sometimes members or presidencies just look at me like I'm supposed to be a gift sent from above to give them all the answers, but when it comes to putting plans into action my companion and I can´t do everything ourselves, and we definitely cannot cover the entire area evrey day to check up on ward missionaries, less actives, recent converts, new investigators, and investigators. So, we have a great plan this week for waking up the members to help us help the people in their ward, so that we can then help build the branch with new members, while they are working hard to maintain and care for the members that are already members. Visiting teaching and home teaching is important, people. Do it. 

Sorry that was just kind of boring info... but Im ready to go, and trying to adjust to love something else as much as or more than I love all of you. Everyone always wants to see my family, so I show them the Family Proclamation Book that mom made. When I see how much they love you, it makes me love you more. 

Also, dont judge these pics. I was sleep deprived for two days in most of them. The first one is for Jennah, and the second one is with Algie Brown´s sister. She is such an angel. 
Hermana Coray

Monday, July 21, 2014

Im Laboring in the Vineyard, and I already have a Tree

This is Sara's first letter from Chile!!!! July 21, 2014

It is beautiful here. There are dogs EVERYWHERE.
Me and my companion live in a cute little apartment. Her name is Hna. Carias from Guatemala. She is awesome! This is her last transfer though... Mom asked me about a thousand questions, and I cant remember what they are, so Ill just tell you random stuff. Theres a lot of work to do with reactivation in Rañaca Alto (my area). Everyone says I have good Spanish, but I cant understand a THING people are saying to me. They are all so excited that Im from America, and so they get excited and talk even faster than normal, and I dont even see their lips move.... So... pray more for interpretation of tongues maybe. hahahah.
Like I was saying, everyone loves that I have such light skin, and the other day we were contacting in the market, and this nice man ran up to me and was very excited... he gave me a little tree. I didnt know what to do with it. I just carried it around until we got back to the church, and then gave it to a girl in the ward to keep. Hahaha.
Sorry I sounded so serious on the phone! I was tired and just couldnt hear you haha.
My interview with the President and meeting him and his wife and family was wonderful. One of the first things he said was ,"Welcome Sister Coray, we have been waiting for you for a very very long time." I know he wasn't just talking about the past six months... haha.
I have to learn Spanish very quickly, because most likely, I will stay here when Hna. Carias leaves in 5 weeks, and so I have to know the area very well and know who these people are!
Our ward mission leader and his family are awesome, and so great to work with. Its hard to get ward members to come to meetings sometimes, but we're working on it. I hope evryone is doing great! I love and miss you all, but I haven't really even had time to think about any of that since I got here, which is good.
Love you! Being able to upload pictures is a little weird, so Ill try to figure that out. Same time next week!
Hna. Coray

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Arrival of Hermana Coray

Last message Sara sent Monday, July 14 around 2:00 in the afternoon from the CCM:
Also, I will call around 9 o-clock, and Ill just call the house phone. If you don't hear from me, dont freak out. The call card might just not be working or something, or sometimes the payphones are weird. 
Dad, did my teacher, Hna. Vidrio message you on Facebook? She was going to try to get you guys to send her a video so I could see it before I left. So don't think it's some weirdy trying to get a hold of you haha. I love you all very much, and miss you everyday. Keep me (and my luggage) in your prayers as I travel and get to a new place. 
I have also heard from very reliable sources that as soon as we get to Viña and take a group picture by the clock tower, we immediately have to go place a Book of Mormon, and get a contact. Before we even get our trainer. So, pray for me with that too. Ill mostly just smile and act excited until they take the Book haha. Oh, and they just give us the address of the mission home and we have to find our way there. Ill still be with Hna. Sanford, so we'll keep each other safe and get the job done. 
Remember, no news is good news. Lots of prayers, please. Lovin you lots and lots! See you soon!
The Phone Call-Monday
We set up Skype with Jennah and Greg and Adri and waited for the phone to ring.  By 9:35pm I thought the calling card must not be working like she had said may happen.  Then the phone rang! We each took turns telling her about our day and wishing her luck.  Go love those people!!!! It was short and sweet and then the phone cut off... sad.  But it was so fun to hear her!
The Flight-Tuesday
There is a great app on my phone through KYAK where you can track any flight around the world.  A few times when I woke up in the night I checked to see the status of her plane flying across the ocean from Mexico city to Chile.  I hope she got more rest than I did. 
No News-Tuesday, Wednesday? Thursday!
So we kinda expected an email saying she arrived. Tuesday came and went, no news.  But we felt peaceful telling us all was well. Wednesday came and went, no news.... hmmmm starting to wonder, still peaceful. I woke up early Thursday morning at 5:00 am just as this email and picture arrived.  I smiled, said a little prayer, again and went back to sleep peacefully.
The Clock Tower!!!! Finally Thursday morning I received this message:
Dear family,
Your daughter is now with us in the mission field and she is ok, we are grateful to have her here.
 This is a picture of her.

Elder Call
Secretario Ejecutivo
Misión Chile Viña del Mar
4 Norte 1112 | 68315332

July 14, 2014 Hermana Vidrio sending off District 5-C

Hermana Vidrio is one of the Spanish teachers at the CCM.  She really enjoyed district 5-C.  She sent pictures and videos to all the moms with this little message:

Here are more pictures and videos, I hope you all enjoy it.
Sisters, thanks for example to your sons and daughters (Alma 53:20-21, 56:47-48, Alma 57: 21, 26-27) they are this for you, thanks for your work and support them and send them to help and work WITH the Lord in His work.
I really love your children, they taught me too ... (a lot!! seriously)
I know that you may no need my help anymore but I want you to know that if I can help you in something I love to do it again.

on my new district, Two missionary'll also go to Chile Viña del Mar in six weeks, if you want to send more videos, I can copy them to a CD and send their children with them ;)
With LOVE:
Hermana Indhira Vidrio

Little things become important July 14,2014

This was a cute little letter conversation I had with Sara about her memories of the MTC:

Sara: The only things i will miss about the MTC are Sister Howe, Sister Nauta, and Sister Franks. Ill miss some other people too, but mostly them. I have made some very good friends here. Also, I loved that while I was here we were able to hear so many words from the apostles, and they say very different things in private settings than they do in General Conference or even in Stake Conferences. So I have really loved that. I am so glad that I will have all of these experiences to draw on for the rest of my life with my own family. It will be such a blessing. I hope you are doing good mommy. Thank you for teaching me how to fold fitted sheets and cook and do my own laundry, and to not be afraid to talk to people. Don't let the boys stop playing the piano. And making them sing couldn't hurt haha. Love you mommy

Mom: Isn't it funny how the littlest things add up to matter so much.  Life Skills..... they're important.  I love you so much.  So glad you have always been a happy obedient girl who looks to the gospel for direction.  Go love those people.  Eat well , Drink well,  be aware of people around you as you travel so you're safe.  Love you so much!!!! "I'm going on an adventure" Bilbo would say!!!!!

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Monday, July 14, 2014, I'm Going on an Adventure

Sara wrote us this quick note as she was packing to go to the airport!

Ahhh... Today, as I get ready to go I feel a little... terrified. I think it has all of the sudden hit me that this is real. I still can't believe I'm here, and it is especially weird because I feel like I'm never the one moving my own feet. At least I am repeatedly reassured by that. I can't really explain the contradictions I have felt within my own little self, and the inner-battles I've had, but this week I was reminded of one of my favorite discourses ever given, and I think it puts into perspective what the Lord intends for each of us.

Our teacher, Hermana Vidrio (she's amazing), showed us the Mormon Message Video (look it up on Youtube) made to follow the address given by Elder Christofferson about the gardener that prunes his bush.

Sometime in life we feel cut-down, or left to struggle alone. I can admit that I have said before in prayers, words similar to those that Elder Christofferson uses: "How could you do this to me, Lord? How could you bring me so low? Why do you keep cutting me down?" 

But most often, it is not until after those kind of hard things in our life that we can realize and appreciate those experiences for what they are.

At Christ's tomb, Mary thought she had seen the Gardner. Contrary to what many may glean from that scripture, I don't think she was mistaken in whom she saw.

She saw the same who created the Garden of Eden, overcame the Garden of Gethsemane, and condemned the barren fig tree. The Same Gardner who has planted this seed of faith in me, which, for me, is growing into the Tree of Life. The Master of the Vineyard. 

He is the Gardner who loves us enough to cut us down, always in the most precise and calculated ways, so that we are able to grow in the way He intends for us to grow. And I love Him for it. 

It's kind of like when Bilbo Baggins (yes, we're using Lord of the Rings this week) is reading the long list of everything that could go wrong. 

I'm excited to go on this adventure. 

Sara's Flight Itinerary

July 8, 2014:  Sara:  I got my flight itinerary, which I will upload to you in a picture in a second. Ill probably call from the airport around 8 or 9 pm YOUR TIME on Monday night. This coming.
Mom: Oh yeah what a fun family home evening!  

July 8, 2014 Why are you so.... old...?

This is Sara's last letter from the CCM. Next week she will fly to Chile!!!

Dear family and friends,
So I can spot a newby from a mile away. They have that "deer in the headlights" "where's the food" "I can't find my companion" look.

Anyways, so me and Hna. Sanford and our friends went and sat by some at dinner (we didnt have to ask if they were new. We knew.) And this one sweet spirit starts asking about where i was from... blah blah blah, etc. etc.... and eventually asks how much college I had done, and I said 5 semesters. She looked SO confused, but I could tell what she was getting at because she said (very slowly) "Oh. So you must have gone down to BYU the summer right after you graduated."

(Ding ding ding, what do we have for her, Johnny?)

"Nope, Im 21"
"Oh really?! (Gasp) Is that weird to be so much older than everyone else?"
I gave her the look from nursery (mom put that picture up so everyone knows what we're talking about). And that about settled it.
I wanted to say "Listen, just because Im old enough to tie my own shoes, doesnt mean I landed the ark." But, once again, those kinds of things are frowned upon.
P.S. Happy 4th of July. During lunch they had all the missionaries from USA stand up and sing the Star Spangled Banner, and it was one of the most beautiful things I've ever heard in my life. (The staff made an excellent effort at making traditional American food. With a little help from Costco, it was really good.)

I am so excited that this is my last week here, great as it has been. I know Im about to be served a giant piece of humble pie on a silver platter, but I dont care. The sooner the better. 
The other day we got to teach a real person (they're all real... but this one wasn't a profile) and it was amazing. It that's what it feels like to teach someone who has been prepared to hear the gospel, then I can't get to Chile fast enough. There was the weirdest, most powerful feeling in my chest. There are no words.

We had an amazing devotional from Elder Bednar the other day, and he talked mostly about developing Christlike attributes. The #1 thing that separates our characteristics from His (other than, you know, Him being perfect) is that He always turned outward to help others, when we would feel like turning inward. He talked about when he goes to visit stakes, and members are always so excited to tell him about their pioneer ancestors that came across the plains. He said he is always tempted to look at them and say "That's great, but what have you done lately?" I have never heard him give a talk that way. He was so serious about how much better we can be. I loved it. Food for thought. "What have I done lately?"
Also, what does it feel like for me to be gone?

Children, learn your scripture mastery. Dont worry about memorizing the words, just the reference and the principle. You will thank me later. 
Coming soon to theaters: Ive organized my scriptures in the coolest way. Video next week. 
I love you all dearly! Thank you for your sweet notes and encouragement. If anyone ever wonders if this is Christ's one and only true church. Listen to these words: It is. 
Also, Viña del Mar is in a place called Valparaiso, and Paraiso means paradise. So, there's that. 
Sister Coray

CCM Daily Schedule July 1, 2014

Our daily schedule is basically this:

Class (3 hrs)
Class (3 hrs)
Language Study
Ready for bed

Sometimes there's less class and more teaching. But Tuesdays and Sundays are completely different. More devotionals and happy thoughts haha. Love you!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Profile of a Prophet

Sara was so impressed by this talk she wanted to share it here:

Profile of a Prophet  by Hugh B Brown
This address can be found at

Hugh B. Brown was assistant to the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints when this devotional address was delivered at Brigham Young University on 4 October 1955.

I should like to dispense with all formality, if I may, and address both faculty and students as my brothers and sisters. I adopt that form of salutation for several reasons: first, practically all who are here are members of the Church that established and maintains this university; second, I believe in the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man; and third, I do not intend to give a lecture, certainly not an oration or even a sermon, but simply wish to bear my testimony to my brothers and sisters. I should like to be for a few minutes a witness in support of the proposition that the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored in our day and that this is His Church, organized under His direction through the Prophet Joseph Smith. I should like to give some reasons for the faith I have and for my allegiance to the Church. Perhaps I can do this more quickly by referring to an interview I had in London, England, in 1939, just before the outbreak of the war. I had met a very prominent English gentleman, a member of the House of Commons, formerly one of the justices of the supreme court of England. In my conversations with this gentleman on various subjects—“vexations of the soul,” he called them—we talked about business, law, politics, international relations, and war, and we frequently discussed religion. He called me on the phone one day and asked if I would meet him at his office and explain some phases of the gospel. He said, “I think there is going to be a war. If there is, you will have to return to America and we may not meet again.” His statement regarding the imminence of war and the possibility that we would not meet again proved to be prophetic. When I went to his office he said he was intrigued by some things I had told him. He asked me to prepare a brief on Mormonism. I may say to you students that a brief is a statement of law and facts that lawyers like President Wilkinson prepare when they are going into court to argue a case. He asked me to prepare a brief on Mormonism and discuss it with him as I would discuss a legal problem. He said, “You have told me that you believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet. You have said to me that you believe that God the Father and Jesus of Nazareth appeared to Joseph Smith. I cannot understand how a barrister and solicitor from Canada, a man trained in logic and evidence, could accept such absurd statements. What you tell me about Joseph Smith seems fantastic, but I think you should take three days at least to prepare a brief and permit me to examine it and question you on it.” I suggested that we proceed at once and have an examination for discovery, which is, briefly, a meeting of the opposing sides in a lawsuit where the plaintiff and defendant, with their attorneys, meet to examine each other’s claims and see if they can find some area of agreement, thus saving the time of the court later on. I said perhaps we could see whether we had some common ground from which we could discuss my “fantastic ideas.” He agreed to that quite readily. I can only give you, in the few minutes at my disposal, a condensed and abbreviated synopsis of the three-hour conversation that followed. In the interest of time I shall resort to the question-and-answer method, rather than narration. I began by asking, “May I proceed, sir, on the assumption that you are a Christian?” “I am.” “I assume you believe in the Bible—the Old and New Testaments?” “I do!” “Do you believe in prayer?” “I do!” “You say that my belief that God spoke to a man in this age is fantastic and absurd?” “To me it is.” “Do you believe that God ever did speak to anyone?” “Certainly, all through the Bible we have evidence of that.” “Did He speak to Adam?” “Yes.” “To Enoch, Noah, Abraham, Moses, Jacob, Joseph, and on through the prophets?” “I believe He spoke to each of them.” “Do you believe that contact between God and man ceased when Jesus appeared on the earth?” “No, such communication reached its climax, its apex, at that time.” “Do you believe that Jesus was the Son of God?” “He was.” “Do you believe, sir, that after Jesus was resurrected, a certain lawyer—who was also a tentmaker by the name of Saul of Tarsus—when on his way to Damascus talked with Jesus of Nazareth, who had been crucified, resurrected, and had ascended into heaven?” “I do.” “Whose voice did Saul hear?” “It was the voice of Jesus Christ, for He so introduced Himself.” “Then, my Lord—that is the way we address judges in the British Commonwealth—I am submitting to you in all seriousness that it was standard procedure in Bible times for God to talk to man.” “I think I will admit that, but it stopped shortly after the first century of the Christian era.” “Why do you think it stopped?” “I can’t say.” “You think that God hasn’t spoken since then?” “I am sure He hasn’t.” “There must be a reason. Can you give me a reason?” “I do not know.” “May I suggest some possible reasons? Perhaps God does not speak to man anymore because He cannot. He has lost the power.” He said, “Of course that would be blasphemous.” “Well, then, if you don’t accept that, perhaps He doesn’t speak to men because He doesn’t love us anymore and He is no longer interested in the affairs of men.” “No,” he said, “God loves all men, and He is no respecter of persons.” “Well, then, if He could speak, and if He loves us, then the only other possible answer, as I see it, is that we don’t need Him. We have made such rapid strides in science and we are so well educated that we don’t need God anymore.” And then he said—and his voice trembled as he thought of impending war—“Mr. Brown, there never was a time in the history of the world when the voice of God was needed as it is needed now. Perhaps you can tell me why He doesn’t speak.” My answer was: “He does speak, He has spoken; but men need faith to hear Him.” Then we proceeded to prepare what I may call a “profile of a prophet.” Perhaps you students would like to amplify what I must condense today and draw your own standard or definition of a prophet and see whether Joseph Smith measures up. We agreed between us that the following characteristics should distinguish a man who claims to be a prophet: 1. He will boldly claim that God had spoken to him. 2. Any man so claiming would be a dignified man with a dignified message—no table jumping, no whisperings from the dead, no clairvoyance, but an intelligent statement of truth. 3. Any man claiming to be a prophet of God would declare his message without any fear and without making any weak concessions to public opinion. 4. If he were speaking for God he could not make concessions, although what he taught would be new and contrary to the accepted teachings of the day. A prophet bears witness to what he has seen and heard and seldom tries to make a case by argument. His message and not himself is important. 5. Such a man would speak in the name of the Lord, saying, “Thus said the Lord,” as did Moses, Joshua, and others. 6. Such a man would predict future events in the name of the Lord, and they would come to pass, as did those predicted by Isaiah and Ezekiel. 7. He would have not only an important message for his time but often a message for all future time, such as Daniel, Jeremiah, and others had. 8. He would have courage and faith enough to endure persecution and to give his life, if need be, for the cause he espoused, such as Peter, James, Paul, and others did. 9. Such a man would denounce wickedness fearlessly. He would generally be rejected or persecuted by the people of his time, but later generations and descendants of his persecutors would build monuments in his honor. 10. He would be able to do superhuman things—things that no man could do without God’s help. The consequence or result of his message and work would be convincing evidence of his prophetic calling: “By their fruits ye shall know them” (Matthew 7:20). 11. His teachings would be in strict conformity with scripture, and his words and his writings would become scripture. “For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spake as they were moved by the Holy Ghost” (2 Peter 1:21). Now I have given but an outline that you can fill in and amplify and then measure and judge the Prophet Joseph Smith by the work and stature of other prophets. As a student of the life of the Prophet Joseph Smith for more than 50 years, I say to you young men and women: by these standards Joseph Smith qualifies as a prophet of God. I believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God because he talked like a prophet. He was the first man since the apostles of Jesus Christ were slain to make the claim that prophets have always made—viz., that God had spoken to him. He lived and died like a prophet. I believe he was a prophet of God because he gave to this world some of the greatest of all revelations. I believe that he was a prophet of God because he predicted many things that have come to pass—things that only God could bring to pass. John, the beloved disciple of Jesus, declared, “The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy” (Revelation 19:10). If Joseph Smith had the testimony of Jesus, he had the spirit of prophecy. And if he had the spirit of prophecy, he was a prophet. I submit to you, and I submitted to my friend, that as much as any man who ever lived, he had a testimony of Jesus, for, like the apostles of old, he saw Him and heard Him speak. He gave his life for that testimony. I challenge any man to name one who has given more evidence of the divine calling of Jesus Christ than did the Prophet Joseph Smith. I believe the Prophet Joseph Smith was a prophet because he did many superhuman things. One was translating the Book of Mormon. Some people will not agree, but I submit to you that the Prophet Joseph Smith in translating the Book of Mormon did a superhuman work. I ask you students to undertake to write a story on the ancient inhabitants of America, to write as he did without any source of material. Include in your story 54 chapters dealing with wars, 21 historical chapters, and 55 chapters on visions and prophecies. And, remember, when you begin to write on visions and prophecies, you must have your record agree meticulously with the Bible. You must write 71 chapters on doctrine and exhortation, and here, too, you must check every statement with the scriptures or you will be proven to be a fraud. You must write 21 chapters on the ministry of Christ, and everything you claim He said and did and every testimony you write in your book about Him must agree absolutely with the New Testament. I ask you, would you like to undertake such a task? I would suggest to you too that you must employ figures of speech, similes, metaphors, narrations, exposition, description, oratory, epic, lyric, logic, and parables. Undertake that, will you? I ask you to remember that the man who translated the Book of Mormon was a young man who hadn’t had the opportunity of schooling that you have had, and yet he dictated that book in just a little over two months and made very few, if any, corrections. For over one hundred years some of the best students and scholars of the world have been trying to prove from the Bible that the Book of Mormon is false, but not one of them has been able to prove that anything he wrote was not in strict harmony with the scriptures—with the Bible and with the word of God. The Book of Mormon not only declares on the title page that its purpose is to convince Jew and Gentile that Jesus is the Christ, the Eternal God, but this truth is the burden of its message. In 3 Nephi it is recorded that multitudes of people testified, “We saw Him. We felt of His hands and His side. We know He is the Christ” (see 3 Nephi 11:14–15). Joseph Smith undertook and accomplished other superhuman tasks. Among them I list the following: He organized the Church. (I call attention to the fact that no constitution effected by human agency has survived 100 years without modification or amendment, even the Constitution of the United States. The basic law or constitution of the Church has never been altered.) He undertook to carry the gospel message to all nations, which is a superhuman task still in progress. He undertook, by divine command, to gather thousands of people to Zion. He instituted vicarious work for the dead and built temples for that purpose. He promised that certain signs should follow the believers, and there are thousands of witnesses who certify that this promise has been fulfilled. I said to my friend, “My Lord, I cannot understand your saying to me that my claims are fantastic. Nor can I understand why Christians who claim to believe in Christ would persecute and put to death a man whose whole purpose was to prove the truth of the things they themselves were declaring; namely, that Jesus was the Christ. I could understand their persecuting Joseph if he had said, ‘I am Christ,’ or if he had said, ‘There is no Christ,’ or if he had said someone else is Christ. Then Christians believing in Christ would be justified in opposing him. “But what he said was, ‘He whom ye claim to serve, declare I unto you,’ paraphrasing what Paul said in Athens: ‘Whom therefore ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you’ (Acts 17:23). Joseph said to the Christians of his day, ‘You claim to believe in Jesus Christ. I testify that I saw Him and I talked with Him. He is the Son of God. Why persecute me for that?’ “When Joseph came out of the woods, he had at least four fundamental truths, and he announced them to the world: first, that the Father and the Son are separate and distinct individuals; second, that the canon of scripture is not complete; third, that man was created in the bodily image of God; and fourth, the channel between earth and heaven is open and revelation is continuous.” Perhaps some of you are wondering how the judge reacted to our discussion. He listened intently; he asked some very pointed and searching questions; and, at the end of the period, he said, “Mr. Brown, I wonder if your people appreciate the import of your message. Do you?” He said, “If what you have told me is true, it is the greatest message that has come to this earth since the angels announced the birth of Christ.” This was a judge speaking—a great statesman, an intelligent man. He threw out the challenge: “Do you appreciate the import of what you say?” He added, “I wish it were true. I hope it may be true. God knows it ought to be true. I would to God,” he said, and he wept as he said it, “that some man could appear on earth and authoritatively say, ‘Thus saith the Lord.’” As I intimated, we did not meet again. I have brought to you very briefly some of the reasons why I believe that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. But undergirding and overarching all that, I say to you from the very center of my heart that by the revelations of the Holy Ghost I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet of God. Although these evidences and many others that could be cited may have the effect of giving one an intellectual conviction, only by the whisperings of the Holy Spirit can one come to know the things of God. By those whisperings I say I know that Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. I thank God for that knowledge and pray for His blessings upon all of you in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.

July 1, 2014, The Drugs Down Here

So this week EVERYONE at the CCM has been sick. Some of the missionaries who came in last week brought the flu and colds with them (I fully blame them - because you're not supposed to come to the MTC when you're sick! Exhibit A!) But I'm getting better. The clinic has been so busy here, so Hna. Sanford and I have been taking good care of each other. She has a cold, I have the flu. Im not telling you this to make you worry (so mom and dad, stop). I just thought Id let ya know. Luckily, (And I think almost everyone in the world is aware) that Mexico has no shortage of ... medical remedies. I had to get my last Hep A shot today, and the nurse reassured me that it WAS REALLY Hep A, and he was really good at it too. The Mexico MTC medical staff has got it together.

In the next 2 weeks the CCM will be almost up to maximum capacity at 1000 missionaries. It is becoming the #1 training center in the world for Spanish speaking missionaries. If you get the chance, look up the history of this place and how the church originally bought and built it. Its an awesome story. 

One of the sisters I live with is Hna. Howe, and we are super good buddies. I love her to death. She's good friends with Dallin Mower, and to that was a cool little connection.

I heard there's a new branch in Cuba?!?! Yay.

Theatre Ballet family, thank you for these scriptures. Ilove them.

This week was great, and we got to listen to a great talk by Elder Holland. I dont really remember how he said things, but my takeaways will stay with me.

In order to become as He is, we have to walk where He walked. Salvation has never been a cheap experience. It wasn't easy for Him to pay for it, so dont expect it to be easy for you to try for it. It's supposed to require our souls.

There is no other name whereby man can be saved. But we know our salvation has a name.

Mom, after you post this, will you also post a talk by Hugh B. Brown for me? Everyone whould read it. It's fantastic. ¨The Profile of a prophet¨ 4 Oct 1955 He gave it in a BYU devotional.

I love you all. 

I feel the same Spirit here that I have felt my whole life. At first, that bothered me, because I wondered if I was doing something wrong and not trying hard enough to feel a special kind of Spirit. Then I realized that that's not the reason I dont feel like my heart is on fire every 5 seconds. I feel the same as I always have, because I've always had the best people around me. Ive been living in 'The City of Enoch' my whole life, because I have been surrounded by my own angels. You are more angelic than some of the missionaries sometimes haha, and it makes me miss you, but there's nothing that would make me leave this calling.

 Love you forever!
Sister Coray