Thursday, 3 November 2016

Week 105: Mission Accomplished!

It's so crazy to think my final day as a missionary is already here. I love being the Lord's servant. 
It has been a wonderful two years meeting amazing people and helping them find faith in Jesus Christ. 
I will miss New York and the wonderful people I've met here. I love and already miss you all. 
Hurrah for Israel!
Elder Peterson

Wednesday, 19 October 2016

Week 104: The Final Countdown

Hey Everyone! 

I can’t believe this is the very last week of my mission! Being a missionary has really helped me grow so much and in so many ways. I am truly grateful the Lord has blessed me to meet so many wonderful people here in New York. I love them dearly. I’m grateful to have had such good men as mission presidents, who showed their love and appreciation to each of us individually as missionaries. I’m grateful I chose to serve a mission. I’ve been spiritually uplifted and gained confidence that couldn’t have come in any other way. I want to express my gratitude to those who have helped me, supported me, prayed for me and done so much for me throughout the past two years.  I can't wait to see you all soon!!!

I love and miss you very much,
Elder Peterson

"My last p day as a missionary!"

"Doing some teaching in Niagara Falls."

Lunch at Connors with K.L. and Elder Bates!

Monday, 10 October 2016

Week 103: Sharing My Final Testimony as a Missionary

Hey Guys!

Can you believe I will see you guys in two weeks? I’m so excited!!! I’m counting down the days until I get to give you all the biggest hug. It’s hard for me to believe my time as a missionary is almost up. The first year seemed to go by slow but once I hit my one year mark, time just flew by! What advice do you have for me to make the best of the two weeks I have left?

We had a combined zone conference this week with the Buffalo north and Buffalo south zones. I had the chance to bear my final testimony as a missionary and of course I got emotional. I testified that He lives and of the love our Father in Heaven has for each of us. I was a little nervous because Elder LeGrand R. Curtis (General Authority Seventy) was there but the nervousness washed away and I was confident as I testified of gospel truths. Later on in the meeting, as he was addressing us, he complimented me on my testimony and said how grateful he is for my service. He was here on an assignment to speak to us about striving for obedience and determination to be a successful missionary. He did an amazing job and I really enjoyed the things he said. 

I’ve been thinking about the week we will spend together here as a family and there are a couple of things I’m hoping we can do. First, I would like to have a pizza night with my district. I would love to get to see them all one last time before we go home. I know of a pretty good pizza joint where we can meet up. I would also really like to attend sacrament meeting in the Niagara Falls ward.

I’ll start calling the people I’d like to visit after we have a good idea of when we will be in specific areas of the mission.

I love and miss you very much!
Elder Peterson

Elder LeGrand Curtis & Elder Peterson

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Week 102: The Blessings of Affliction


I absolutely loved watching general conference over the weekend. My favorite talk was given by Elder Evan A. Schmutz. He spoke about the atonement and why bad things happen to good people. I love how he said we can apply the atonement to our lives even when bad things happen to us. He also reminded us that it’s our responsibility to try to find what can be learned from our suffering. I love that!

“Everyone … is acquainted with some measure of loneliness, despair, grief, pain, or sorrow…

Many of us have pleaded with God to remove the cause of our suffering, and when the relief we seek has not come, we have been tempted to think He is not listening. I testify that, even in those moments, He hears our prayers, has a reason for allowing our afflictions to continue, and will help us bear them. …

When we find ourselves laboring through tribulation, it can be difficult to see our trials as signposts on our personal trail of discipleship. But whether we find ourselves at times in the dark valley of despair or on the high road of happiness, learning from and feeling compassion for the sufferings of others can be a blessing.

… May I suggest that your personal struggles—your individual sorrows, pains, tribulations, and infirmities of every kind—are all known to our Father in Heaven and His Son. Take courage! Have faith! And believe in the promises of God!

The purpose and mission of Jesus Christ included that He would “take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people,” “take upon him their infirmities,” and “succor his people according to their infirmities” [see Alma 7:11–12].

To fully receive these gifts our Savior has so freely offered, we all must learn that suffering in and of itself does not teach or grant to us anything of lasting value unless we deliberately become involved in the process of learning from our afflictions through the exercise of faith…

… When we can link our suffering to an assurance of purpose in our mortality and more specifically to the reward awaiting us in heavenly places, our faith in Christ increases and we receive comfort to our souls.”  

-Elder Evan A. Schmutz 
(October 2016 General Conference)

We had another awesome miracle happen! We had a bible referral not too long ago and we actually had the chance to meet with her in person. She is the nicest lady and has a sincere desire to follow God and Jesus Christ. She told us about some of her struggles and experiences with other religions and how she prayed that she would find the right representatives of His church… and she did!!! We had a brief lesson with her and by the end, she was already excited about getting baptized! It has been the coolest experience. She is so prepared and ready to accept the gospel! We can’t wait to meet with her again on Wednesday.

I seriously cannot wait to see you guys in THREE WEEKS! I think I would like to spend most of our time in Cattaraugus, W. Seneca and maybe Batavia for a bit.

I love and miss you all very much! Only three more weeks :)
Elder Peterson

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