Monday, August 11, 2014

Last Word From the Field

Dear Friends and Family,

I wish that I had some amazing email that I could send home today.  Basically, I know that if it wasn’t for the power of Christ’s atonement I would have never been able to make it through these last 18 months. I am feeling a little empty because my heart has just been poured all the way out; the people in Salt Lake and Argentina have all of it.  The only regret that I have is that I feel like I have gotten more out of this experience than I could have ever given.  I am the sum total of my companions, investigators, and my Mission President.  I love those people.  I love this gospel.  I know the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the truth.  And I know that this is where it all begins :)

See you all soon  
Hermana Walker
North America here I come!

The cute lady who does our laundry is going to the celestial kingdom for sure! I was surprised to see that she actually sewed the holes in my socks.

The 21 missionaries from the Eldorado Valley Ward
on the wall outside the Bishop's office :-)

Monday, August 4, 2014

Living in Denial


Nicholas's companion sounds super cute! I love that he is just talking about how humble he is. And Marcus sounds so pitiful.  He is already upset he doesn't speak Spanish in one day! Our family needs to learn patience! Hahahaha. 

This week President changed a bunch of rules and now we can drink Coke.  We are just doing everything 100 percent Preach my Gospel and mission white hand book, nothing extra. The weird thing with the diet here is it actually just tastes like regular Coke, but it will hold me over for the next couple of weeks. 

Speaking of the next couple of weeks, I lived in denial all week that my time is almost over, and then I sit down in the cyber to email you and I can't deny it any more. I'm kind of having an anxiety attack sitting here as I write. Dating, school, job, life are just too much for me. Really too much!! And my favorite family were able to reschedule their wedding but it's not until the 30th of August, so I'll be gone :(

Yes, I want to go to Ashley Swarts's wedding! And I'm glad to hear Aunt JoEllen is okay! Scary for the whole family!!

And I know that was like the lamest email time ever, but I am so stressed out that I can't really put my thoughts into words. I'll just have to worry about the future in the future. We will plan next week for how everything is going to work out for Friday! Can't wait to see my mom in 11 days ;) And everyone else in 19!


Hermana Chloe
Hermana Reid and I

Zone activity

I got to go on divisions with this cute girl this week--Hermana Foutz from Henderson!
I gave my companion highlights! It looked really good. I need to take an after shot :)  PS. I'm sooooo excited you were able to get me a hair appointment on Saturday!! My plane better not be late.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Wedding Planner


That is the chosen title of my email today because that is what I feel like these days: a wedding planner. Our three progressing families are couples that are waiting to get married, but unfortunately I haven’t been a very successful wedding planner lately. I am currently planning weddings number 4, 5, and 6 that of my mission.  We had one scheduled for Friday, the one I wrote about last week, that we had been planning for five weeks, and it was cancelled.  

This is what happened. I am a little upset with the officials, because between the time that they got their appointment to get married and last week they had changed the paperwork and did not let them know. So they showed up with what they had told them to bring before and not the new secret requirements.  It actually messed up two of our couples.  It was super rough for all of us.  They are headed today to go get a new appointment.  The problem is that they must get married in the registro civil, and to do that they have to get an appointment about a month in advance for when they can go and get married.  The country is a little unorganized so the requirements are not always the same. Sad. It is so awful that it is so hard to get married and keep the commandments in this country.  For those of you who live in Vegas: home of the 24 hour wedding chapels, you have no idea how much I wish that we had that here! But other than the two cancelled weddings, it was a good week.  

Basically we stay busy all the time taking care of these families and trying to find new ones.  It is a great problem to be so busy that it is hard to get everything done. I have a little over two weeks left! I can’t believe it.  I heard that President cancelled the end of the mission tour, so that is just another reason I’m so excited that mom is coming.  We can see Buenos Aires together :)

The best moment of the week was Saturday.  The Stake young men and young women had a theater event where each ward did a short play of a Book of Mormon story.  Since the MTC my favorite chapter in the Book of Mormon has been Jacob 5, and I have probably read it about one or two times a week since I have been on the mission.  And it gets me every time.  And as it would turn out our ward was assigned the Allegory of the Olive tree from Jacob 5 as our little theater production.  They did a modern dance version of the trees with the young women wearing green and brown dresses.  They danced and played the trees, and then they had one of the young men play the Lord of the Vinyard, and because we have very few young men, our little 12-year-old investigator, Liam, played the Servant of the Lord of the Vineyard.  

I sobbed the whole production of about 15minutes as I watched our little investigator play the part of the Savior.  I might just miss watching this family enter the waters of baptism, but some things are more important.  A long time ago in my mission I prayed to my Father that he wouldn’t send me anything or ask me to do anything that would influence me to develop pride.  And as I have watched the blessings unfold from that desire I am amazed, that I have been allowed to feel successful but in a quiet way.  I felt lately that my Father is proud and accepts my service.  This moment was one that has literally changed me, and the whole family was spiritually uplifted.

I can’t believe that Marc leaves tomorrow! How is he doing? Camron sent me a picture of you guys at Grimaldi’s.  I love Grimaldi’s!  (Ever since Whitney and Ryan suggested we walk across the Brooklyn Bridge and go to Grimaldi’s, I have loved it, for the pizza and for the happy memory of that day!)  That is on my list of the things we will be eating my first week. Mom, what are you going to do when the boys are gone? We’ve been planning so long to get them ready to leave, and tomorrow they will both be gone. When I think about them, I just cry. I can’t even imagine how you feel. Mom, you and I have both been doing very scary things lately!

I love this gospel and being a missionary, even if that means I will be doing wedding planning for the last two weeks of my mission. Haha. Oh, I hope to see these weddings! We shall see.

Hermana Walker 

PS. Nick sounds so good.  I love that he’s like if my emotional sister can do it, I can do it. Haha.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Funny Story

Hello all!

For the past couple of days, I have been noticing that all of my socks are getting holes in the balls of my feet, and I have been wondering why and just thinking that my socks are getting old.  Then, I took a look at the bottom of my shoe, and I saw my foot and started cracking up in the street. haha.

I am crying in cyber because of all of the pictures and letters from and about Marc and Nic today. I've actually been doing a lot of that lately. Every time I feel the spirit of missionary work, like in a lesson, or at church or something, I start to cry because I know that I will be feeling a lot less of that soon. My companion and I are trying to just work our hardest, and in reality we are just super enjoying everything.   

As for our family, they are getting married this Friday, and everything is still on schedule.  They have their interview tomorrow, and then instead of Saturday, they are getting baptized on Sunday after church and then confirmed the same day. We changed the day because on Saturday there is a stake activity and our chapel is the stake center. We couldn't find a time other than 2 in the afternoon, and having a baptism in Argentina durring the siesta is like asking for no one to show up, maybe even the people getting baptized. haha.  

This last week I got strep throat just like my companion, so that pretty much sums up our week.  But our family is so cute!! This week the dad told us that he asked his children if they wanted some tea in the morning with their breakfast (something they used to always do), and then the children were like all confused and offended because the Hermanitas said that tea was bad.  Then the dad said, "I know I was just testing you."  It was a super cute story! Ya, these children are super, super cute.  With the last week before the baptism, we are expecting a lot of problems, but it is to be expected before every single baptism. 

I am going to go, but l love you! And hopefully there will be pictures of a baptism for you next week! 


Hermana Chloe
Hole in my shoe. haha.
Elias is a recent convert whose parents are getting married on the 22nd of August so that his mom can get baptized!

Hna Reid and I in our Jerseys watching the semi-finals game (Dia day repose people, we couldn't watch the finals on Sunday.) However, I'm very sad for Argentina ;( 

These are two pictures that I have in my bag and show almost every new person we talk to.  It really helps us gain confidence with the people  to talk about our families. The first picture is one side and the second is the other side. (Do you like how I added myself to the graduation picture?)

Monday, July 7, 2014

Praying for the Time to Go Slower

Hello all!

So the whole mission was kinda hit this week by a wave of sickness and luckily I did not get it this time!! Unfortunately, my companion did. She was sick with strep throat so she got an antibiotic on Monday, but then it didn't get better so they upped her dosage on Thursday, and then she finally got better. Basically that means that we did little teaching last week trying to help her rest and feel better.  But we did manage to make it to our most important investigators. I will tell you a little more about our miracle family that I've mentioned before.

Barby started listening to the missionaries 13 years ago, but then she stopped because her husband didn't want to get legally married so that she could  get baptized.  About 7 years ago, she attended church with her at the time little children and again desired to be baptized, but the same obstacle of marriage prevented her from baptism and lead her to investigate other churches.  In this last year, Barby and her family have gone through a lot of trials, and she was about to move to Spain to work for a year to get away from all the problems before the missionaries knocked on her door two weeks before she left.  She listened to them for about a month before I was transferred into the area.  In our first lesson  after I got here, we taught Barby with her husband (Jesus) for the first time.  Then the next lesson we taught the whole family with the children Liam (12) and Julie (10).  And then that Sunday they came to church together as a family!  They have a date to be married on the 25th of July and to be baptized on the 26th.  They seriously are a miracle.  So prepared.  In the lesson we had with them on Friday, Jesus said the last prayer and prayed for their family fechas and at the end of the prayer he was crying.  It was a super sacred experience.  He started the lesson saying he thought it might be a good idea to wait for a month to get married so that they could have a little more money, but when we explained that they could be going to the temple in one year and that the sooner the better he just said, "Well then I guess we're really getting married on the 25th," and he just looked at his wife and smiled.  And the children are angels.  I love them, and I am humbled for the opportunity to teach them.  I know that Satan will not make it easy, but the power of Christ's atoning sacrafice will make it possible!

About my companion! Her name is Hermana Maren Reid.  She only has one transfer less than me on the mission, so it is kinda crazy that we are together.  She is 23 and from Mesa, Arizona.  Basically, we are super good friends, and the work just seems so much easier these days to be with someone like her.  I have loved every one of my companions, but it takes a lot of stress away to be with someone who is so much like me and who also wants to finish strong on the mission. And with so little time left on the mission, working hard is the only option.  We both love this area and the mission, and she is a saint for putting up with me in my last transfer and my anxiety about going home :)

The new mission president and his wife, President and Hermana Robertson, came to our zone meeting this week. I've been in denial that the Carters actually left, but meeting the Robertsons made it very real! Don't be jealous Mom and Dad, but I felt kinda like my parents left me behind!!! You know how I love the Carters! But actually President and Hermana Robertson are super nice.  I think that he is going to be a very good president. He seems to really know the gospel and how to apply it in our lives, and I think that he will be a very good spiritual teacher for the missionaries.

I forgot to tell you, but before President Carter left, we had a great interview--kind of like my exit interview where we talked about the future and everything. At the end he gave me a blessing; it was very sacred. I will tell you all about it when we see each other in August. I am officially pathetic. President and Hermana Carter are planning a mission reunion in October during Conference. This is how pathetic I am: the thing that I am most looking forward to after the mission is . . . the mission reunion! Haha.  The Carters love to set people up, and he said that he has a few former elders in mind but he will consult with the hermana to get her thoughts on who they should introduce me to at the reunion. It's going to be a big reunion in the Tanner building on campus, and I really am excited. No judging! 

May we all try a little harder to find the touch of our Father in Heaven's hand in all things beautiful this week.  Do the things that you won't be able to do in one week like give eachother all hugs.  Marc and Nic you are both commanded to give each other a hug at least every day. I LOVE YOU!

Hermana Chloe 

PS. We have permission to watch the Argentina soccer game on Wednesday!!
Julie and I 
President and Hermana Robertson
My 4th of July outfit.

Monday, June 23, 2014



So in case anyone was wondering if I got transferred...What are you thinking? This is the mission of Hermana Walker. Of course I got transferred!!  I am now back in my first area to die in the same place where I was born. (In mission lingo the place where you are born is your first area and your last area is where you die.) It is kind of surreal to be back in Castelar.  One of the investigators that I found here 9 months ago is engaged to get married so that she can get baptized before I go home! It will be a super bitter sweet moment. 

As for Castelar, it has been surprisingly great to be back.  I was a little scared when I saw that I was coming back, and when I walked into our apartment on the first day I couldn’t hold back the tears.  I was caught off guard by the flood of emotions from my first transfer here in Argentina. I have come full circle, and I’m so grateful to be here. While in this area the first time, I was destroyed in every single way—emotionally, spiritually, physically. I arrived in Argentina full of fear and anxiety about the country, language, and worries from home. It got to the point where I didn’t think I could do it.  At the end of my first 3 or 4 weeks in Argentina, I left Castelar struggling to survive and clinging to a tiny particle of faith, and I went to 9 de Julio where the Lord helped me become who he needed, not who I  had wanted.  The sting of those first weeks hurt when I came back.  But then like He always does, the Lord has just poured out the blessings.

The sisters were teaching a lady before I got here, and on my first day in this area we had a lesson with her and invited the Dad to listen as well.  On my second day, we had a lesson with the Mom the Dad, the son (12), and the daughter (10).  Then, they all came to church on Sunday! They have a fecha to be baptized on the 26th, and today at 6:30 in the morning we went to the registro civil to get them a turno to get married.  They will be getting married on 25th of July and then baptized as a family on the 26th.  As I stood in the crowded bus this morning after my companion and I went with Barby to the registero civil, I had to hide the tears. I could not believe how strongly I could feel the spirit in that bus.  I knew that I was exactly where I was supposed to be. I have hardly ever felt like I stood in a holier place than that bus.  It was one of the most sacred experiences of my mission.  So in addition to the family we found back in Oct., that is two families we have getting married in July! Yay! Yesterday, we had dinner with the bishop and when his wife was talking about our three families of investigators she started to cry.  I love this ward, I love the mission, the work is going great, and I still have 7 more weeks!!!! I’m so lucky!!!!

In what ever happens this week, just love it! Sometimes it is the only thing we can do.  I love you all!

Hermana Walker 

P.S. My companion is Hermana Reid from Arizona. She’s great; I’ll tell you more about her next time.  I think she is my 9th companion in 9 months. Crazy! Especially crazy for a girl who used to fear and despise change. 

Hermana Reid

Monday, June 16, 2014

For My Brothers--What Every Elder Needs to Know to Get through His Mission with All These Sisters. . .

To Marcus and Nicholas,

Because of recent experience and observations, I feel motivated this afternoon to address a topic for my handsome little brothers, who will be leaving on their missions in one month's time.  This advice is so that they can know how to appropriately and respectfully handle being in the same mission as sister missionaries.  I will start out by saying that I feel for you bros, sister missionaries while in general are great, can be quite a problem. Sisters and Elders are now often the same age. Sisters have a unique work to do as missionaries and can often reach people that the elders can't; however, the increase in awesome sisters creates unique challenges for the elders. Here are some tips and thoughts that will guide you through many potentially difficult situations and help you stay focused.

-First, you need to have a the general understanding of who a sister missionary is exactly.  I have decided that there really are 4 different types of gender in this world--all so significant that they deserve their own category--these are: male, female, pregnant, and missionary.  Therefore, in your mission you will be missionaries and the sisters will be missionaries.  It will help to just think you are all the same gender.  Some missionaries wear skirts and some wear pants and a tie. Also, as for respectfully talking to and dealing with the missionaries in skirts, I would say that a good general rule is to treat them like someone else's grandmother--meaning super nice and respectfully--but nothing more.  If you wouldn't say it to a Tanner's or Braize's grandmother, then you shouldn't say it to a sister. If you wouldn't do something for Sister Imlay or Sister Stubbs, then you shouldn't do it for a sister.

-Second, you need to be careful with pictures. (This advice is not reflected by the first few months of pictures from my mission before I got smart.) It will really help you out to set some personal rules before you go into the MTC.  Here are my suggested picture guidelines. First, if a sister missionary wants a picture with you, NEVER take a picture without your companion, and she should also be with her companion in the picture.  However, because you should also not take a picture two and two like a double date, there should be one other elder or sister in the picture (for example, the companion of whoever is taking the picture) in the picture or have a member or other person in the picture.  Meaning, if you take a picture with a sister missionary in it there, will be at least 5 people in the photo!  Why is this important you ask? Because in my time as a sister training leader, I have seen some crazy stuff.  And some sisters are nuts and look through the pictures in their camera a lot.  Just imagine if she had a picture alone with you.  Don't let her get any ideas!

-Another thing,  If there is a group of sisters talking at a mission event.  Don't talk to them.  Go to a group of elders and talk with them.  A mission is a complete bromance.  Embrace the bromance! Avoid at all costs any romance!!!  You speak with the sisters only when you have to. If you enter a room with sisters, you shake their hands to be polite and greet them, then you go talk to elders.

-Fourth, as a leader, district or zone leader, you should accept the importance of Sister Training Leaders.  They have the responsibility help the sisters in every aspect that is outside of the general district or zone capacity.  Meaning that you can help the sisters all you want within a district or zone meeting, but outside of that meeting you have the priesthood responsibility for accountability and nothing else.  Every-other-thing you want to say, you should say to the STLs, and they will let the sisters know.  Even something little in the work should be communicated through the STLs.  For example, you can't just call and tell them things.  Let's say that a companionship is having a hard time finding new investigators, and you as their district leader call them and give them all sorts of advice for only their companionship to help them find new people.  Then what happens?  (1)They feel all special because you are helping them, and (2) they want to call you after and tell you about all of their successes and say that you are just the greatest.  Bla-bla-bla! It is just easier to call the STLs, and then have them call the sisters, if you just can't wait until the next district meeting to give the help to the whole district.

Other general stuff:
-Do everything in your power to do nothing that would make a sister think that she is special to you.
-Do not go easy on them, but also do not be overly hard. Good luck with that balance :-)
-A general mission rule, for working with sisters and others in your mission, is to learn to say sorry. If there is a misunderstanding, apologize first. Swallow your pride, and say sorry!

Other than that, I will do some more thinking of other things you need to know.  You guys will be awesome. Just be wise.  Don't do anything stupid.  Don't act your age.

Hermana Walker

P.S. Have mom by you knee length spandex shorts to wear under your basketball shorts for exercise or activities. The sisters don't want to see your underwear hanging out of your shorts :-) You're too classy for that.