Alma 29:9

I know that which the Lord hath commanded me, and I glory in it. I do not glory of myself, but I glory in that which the Lord hath commanded me; yea, and this is my glory, that perhaps I may be an instrument in the hands of God to bring some soul to repentance; and this is my joy.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Home Sweet Home!

Hannah flew into the Boise Airport on October 11, 2014 at 2pm. She was greeted by lots of family and friends. The grandkids were especially excited to see Auntie Hannah. They helped make signs for her big return. They spent hours coloring every inch of the poster to make sure they were really special. Many members of the extended family were also at the airport to welcome her home: Uncle Geoff and Aunt Holly, several members of Uncle Roger's family, Aunt Ann and Judy, and some of the college cousins. Everyone cheered when she walked through the gates. She was beaming from ear to ear and was a beautiful missionary. There were hugs all around, and then we headed for home.

After touring Peru for several days with Mom, Dad, Claire, Daniel, and Matt, everyone was exhausted from traveling. Even though they could have slept for days, we had lots to do in our short time together. Just a few hours after Hannah's big return, we all got dressed up for family pictures. Hannah was still officially a missionary, so she got to wear her name badge in the pictures. We were so grateful to have a chance to witness the homecoming of another valiant Christensen missionary, and to have our family complete again. Those moments were so precious, and we are so happy to have Hannah home.

We love you Hannah! Congratulations on serving and completing an honorable mission. We are proud of everything you accomplished, and Heavenly Father loves you for your service to His children. Welcome Home!


Wednesday, February 25, 2015

Wrapping Up

       My mission was the single greatest decision that I have ever made. I owe so much of who I have become to the people I met and the many experiences that I had. I will never forget those moments that were so important to me. One of those times was at the very tail-end of my mission, when finally it was time for the long-awaited arrival of my mom and dad to pick me up.
      They had been quite illusive for a while about their exact plans, so I suspected that they had everything worked out with my mission president and his wonderful wife. I just assumed that on the day of their arrival, someone would call me to see them. However, the day of my parent’s arrival came, and I heard nothing. I began panicking a little when evening drew closer realizing, that this was strange. I knew that my parents spoke no Spanish and would not be able to maneuver around the city without help, and it seemed that the mission was not involved because I hadn’t been informed. Growing more concerned as the hours went on, I phoned our mission president’s wife, who confessed to have been making some hasty phone calls trying to locate my “missing” parents. She said that she would call me as soon as she had more information. Mercifully a member who frequently visited the mission office drove past my companion and I tracting and informed us that they had just been to the office and met my mother and father. Much to my relief not much longer as night was falling we received the news from my Mission President’s wife about the arrival of my parents. She told me that they were in a hotel safe and sound, and that they would come meet me later that evening. She would be stopping by our apartment to drop something off for my fabulous doctor companion.
     Sister Marler arrived and gave me a hug expressing how excited she was to see my parents and I reunited. She made brief plans with my companion and asked if we needed a ride to our next appointment- which we really did, because we were quite late and the family lived really far away. I opened the van door to fall into the arms of not my mom, not my dad, but my sister-in-law Claire. I looked around the van with huge eyes seeing the face of each member of my family who had made the trip to Peru to get me. My mom, dad, brothers Matt and Dan, and Claire. We spent the next few minutes hugging and a bit of crying. Sister Marler had a great time snapping a million photos.

    It really was an amazing surprise that I will never forget. That night, we went to a family home evening where I was presented with a painting that had been done by one of my favorite members in the ward named Cesar. The evening was spent with them, where we taught a lesson and played a game. None other than ring on a string- the mission favorite.

     Mom and dad came tracting with me the next day, where they sat smiling, not understanding anything as my companion and I taught. They were real troopers walking all over the area without even complaining. They really enjoyed meeting my friends and eating with my pensionista: Hermana Silva. The last night was spent with another family home evening farewell. It was such a special moment for me where we sang and people shared what they loved about me. I will never forget that night. Over the next few days we met with other members and friends from my other areas where we cried and hugged and shared sweet memories.
      On the day that we left, we had some time in the morning to do some touring of some ruins. There were many in the mission, but I chose to visit Chan Chan, just outside of one of my old areas in Villa del Mar. We had a great time touring around, visiting some of the other sites: Huanchaco, Apiat and Avenida Espania, as well as Hermalinda the local market.

      It was heartbreaking to fly away from my beloved city. I looked out the window at the place that I loved so much, where so much of me was built. At the city where I had prayed so fervently for the people. The city where I shed so many tears, and so much sweat. I thought about where my feet had taken me in that city and how much I would treasure that place forevermore. My heart yearns for my other home frequently. I realized I didn’t know when I would ever see it again, but I knew that it was my time to move on.

     Our adventures were only beginning. We had no idea how the rest of our trip would turn out. We had planned to go to Cusco and eventually to Machu Picchu. However, due to some unfortunate circumstances, we had no guide. Right before leaving Trujillo Claire suddenly remembers a friend who actually was a tour guide in Cusco. She made one phone call and one email later and we were all miraculously set up for a FANTASTIC trip to Cusco and Machu Picchu.
      We stayed the night in a little ‘hostel’ in Lima until we actually got all the way to Cusco. We were greeted by our fabulous guides: Randy and Itala. They really saved us. We were arranged with a quaint little hotel, and were able to rest for a while and adjust to the 11,000 foot altitude city. That night we took a tour of the beautiful city with Itala who acted as our tour guide. It was a pleasure to hear all about the history of the amazing city.

     The next morning we woke up early to drive the 2 hours to get to the train depo that would get us to the city below Machu Picchu called Aguas Calientes. Randy was an amazing guide, and he really became our good friend. He treated us like family. The train ride was so beautiful, I could hardly take it all in. The town of Aguas Calientes was also so beautiful and touristy. We ate in the city (I was the one who did all the food ordering so that everyone could get a taste of traditional Peruvian cooking) and toured all the little shops and went back to the hotel to prep for the morning at the famous Machu Picchu.
       The ride up the traversing mountain was perilous (or so thought mom. For me it seemed almost normal.) The buses zoomed up and down the mountain with mere inches on all sides from running off cliffs to ramming other busses and colliding with the mountain. Classic Peruvian driving. We finally made it to the city of Machu Picchu and spent a fair amount of time touring the ruins. The surrounding mountains were simply exquisite. It was really an amazing experience. The trip of a lifetime. We had another tour guide named Jose, who took us through the city and explained what we were seeing. It was surreal to be in such an awe-inspiring location.

       We decided beforehand to try our hand at climbing the actual mountain beside the ruins. There is a pretty intense hike nearby that we wanted to go up to get a birds-eye view of the ruins. The hike was so strenuous that only half of us made it to the very top. It took 2 hours to go up an only an hour to go down. There were steep little half steps up the entire hike. It really took a toll on all of us, and we were all eager to be down the mountain for a little rest and relaxation. 

We enjoyed our last night in Aguas Caliente. The next morning was the start of the end. We started on our way home from trains to vans to airplanes where we eventually made it all the way home. We had a little trouble in the Peruvian airport with my expired tourist visa, but after a fine paid by the church, I was able to leave the country that I loved. I couldn’t have asked for a more rewarding experience. I would not have traded these experiences for anything in the entire world.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014


Dearest family
Welp, this is the last letter that you are all going to get from me on the mission. I am kind of sad that it has to end. We had a super hectic schedual today doing all sorts of activities. None of us got to use the internet today, but Hermana Marler called me and told me that I had to write you and sort out some little things. 
Firstly, I am so so so so so so SO happy for Benny. I was crying. It was so great to be able to watch him read his letter. Congrats Harry, I have a TON of stuff to share with you when we can chat more calmly.
Dad, Congrats for doing so welll on your potatoes this year. All that hard work was so worth it. I am so proud of you.
Thanks a bunch for emailing me the schedual of the stuff. I know now what we can do during our time here. It will be really special. I am getting really excited to see you all.
Also, There is a member who said that you guys could stay with them until I finish (meaning Monday.) Also another member knows a really nice hotel really close to here that is good quality and safe and also cheap. You don't need to make a reservation or anything Hermana Marler said that she will send a couple of elders to come and pick you up from the airport. Also, I know a member who lives in Cusco (I don't know if we can do anything with that, but he wants to help in whatever way he can. He;s AWESOME)
Things are going well here. I have a couple of special members that you are going to meet. 
I had an amazing experience the other day in the Womens conference. It was something that was directed specifically to Peru. It was an answered prayer for us missionaries. I felt the spirit so strongly. I am looking forward to watch general conference. 
I love you all so much. This letter was very special for me to write. I am so grateful to my Heavenly Father. I am so grateful to my Savior Jesus Christ. I am just so full of love and grattitude. This is a miracle to be here.
I'll see you on Friday.
With so much love, grattitude, cariño and everything else that I have.
Hermana Christensen

Monday, September 22, 2014


Sorry, I lost a bit of time answering some questions for mom so I don't have a lot of time. I am SO HAPPY! Elder Uceda came to visit the missionaries this past week and it was just phenomenal. I just reloved all things pertaining to missionary work. There is a nice bit of time left for me to do some good works and to see some miracles. All the extra prayers would certainly not be wasted on me at this point. I am full of excitement to work hard, and I will. Thanks a million.
Love you all bunches and bunches.
See ya next week Mom and Dad!
Hermana Christensen

Monday, September 15, 2014


Hola mi familia querida. 
Muchísimas gracias por las cartas que me enviaron. Pero enserio, me ayudaron bastante para enfocarme más en las cosas importantes.
I can hardly believe that 1. Benny is a college guy!!! He's soo cool. He's living in the place that I lived for 2 years. It is an awesome place to live. But seriously. The location is bomb. I am so happy for that guy. I think that he will rock it up. 2. Carter is already  1?! Wasn't he just born!? Dad,, stay busy digging those spuds. I have like a hundred and six things that I can now do with potatoes. I can't wait to teach ya'll some of my favorite foods. This place literally is potato land.
Thanks to Grandpa Ogborn for sending me some really awesome cards. I just ate them up. They're a great support system.
Marco is still progressing, but didn't pass his interview again. He's still moving forward. We got tired of just teaching him, so we invited him to teach with us the other day. It was one of the most powerful lessons that I have ever seen. He bore his testimony about how prayers are answered and that people can change when they come to know God. The young woman that we visited committed to be baptized in that moment. It was incredible. I have learned a ton from this guy. He will get baptized soon, his testimony is so strong and has changed so much.
We have been teaching a less active family in our area. They have been inactive for 23 years and are now coming to church faithfully. 3 weeks in a row. Wow. They have all the excitment in the world to relearn the things of the Gospel. It really was a miaracle. We found them when we were updating the ward list and we invited them to church and they CAME. Then they kept coming. I just LOVE seeing less active members in the church. It really gives me a thrill unlike that of anything else. It is just like the parable of the good shepard who goes out to find the one who is lost. When he finds it he throws it up on his shoulders and REJOICES. I am rejoicing now because of the faith of less active members. I have been fortified by their faith and their endurance after many trials. 
I love the Gospel and I love being a missionary.
Hermana Christensen
PS. I cant send pictures for the next few weeks. Sorry :( I lost my cable to upload fotos.

Monday, September 8, 2014


First of all, CONGRATS TO JOE AND KYM! I am so excited to be an auntie again, but THIS TIME I will be able to get to know their new baby from the first few days. That is so exciting!!!!! WOO HOO!
Benny is going to go to New Orleans Louisiana. My prediction
Thanks for the update about all the crops. I really enjoyed all of that. Good luck on harvests and stuff. I want to ride around in a beet truck or tractor this beet harvest!

This week has been a little tough because Hermana Bills got Emergency exchanged out of our area into the other half of the ward because one of the other hermanas ruined her foot and can't proselyte. It is just me and Hermana Calle. We are still loving it and having a blast, but I sure miss Hermana Bills. At least we are still working in the same ward!
Marco is doing pretty good. He did not pass his third interview because he smoked the day before. But he is all ready on everything else. Our district leader had a really wonderful interview with him and got him all excited all over again to be baptized. We are still planning his baptism soon, with another interview to come. He wanted to fast this week for his first time. One YSA, named Daniel who is his friend told him that they could fast together for his first time and Marco said yes. He is pretty nervous. We told him that we would fast with him too and he seemed a little more comfortable. I know that the Lord will bless him. He is so awesome. I need to get you guys a picture of this kid. He really is legit. He will be there soon. We just have to keep having faith and working with him.
Dora came to church again! She even came with her inactive son too! She is so sweet. We were in the Gospel principles class with them, and at the end A mom and son about their same age put their arms around each of them and showed them where to go for the third hour. These two members had also been inactive. This is the work of salvation. I am so impressed by these examples of faith. Hermana Dora is so sweet. After 23 plus years of being inactive she is coming back to church. I love to see less active members in church. I get a real thrill out of it. I think my mission is one of reactivating members to be honest. Hermana Calle said it best. They hadn't had less active lessons for months maybe one here and one there, but not a whole lot. Never more than 3 a week. Now we have about 7 or 8 every week, but not only that, they are coming to church. We are working with members to try to find new less active members. We have found about 4 new ones just this week and from all the less active members that we have 4 came to church this week, and some brought their families who have not been baptized. So in total we had 4 less actives and 4 investigators, but the other missionaries in the same ward had 8 less actives and 4 investigators. WOW. The ward building was PACKED. The work is hastening and you can see it in every phase of the work.
Thanks for all the help with the My Family book. I have given about 3 trainings on how to fill out the book and how to put in all the data online. I always have to show my book. I am the leader of the books in our zone and usually am asked to come to organizations in the ward to help them fill out their books. I am so excited to get back into indexing and doing family history stuff.
I love being a missionary. I am loving this work
Love Hermana Christensen
A really delicious hamburger that I ate. It is from a place here called "Gringo Loco". It is a Guy from Texas who came to Peru, married a peruvian and opened up an American-style burger stand. It is to die for. He's a convert and the missionaries are frequenters there.

Me and our zone in a zone activity. We made the temple out of sheets of paper. Turned out pretty cool

The church in the plaza de armas. It always amazes me it is so pretty.


Familia mia,
Les amo cada uno de ustedes. Mamá, gracias por siempre escribirme y contarme de todas las cosas que están pasando. Dan y claire son muy libres en este momento antes de regresar a la universidad. Voy a hablar con la Hermana Marler y hacer sus pedidos de los Estados Unidos. Gracias por su disposicion a ayudar.
I am doing so well this week. As always, thanks for the pictures. They mean the world to me. I am working really hard (as usual) I just come home and crash every single night and in the mornings I wake up with my feet hurting from working so hard the day before. The only way to make them feel better is to keep walking. (Mom I know that you a probably worrying at this point but dont worry. It isnt critcal. Its like how your feet feel the day after walking around disneyland.) I love working hard. I love preaching the Gospel. There are so many miracles all over the place. 
This week we have been trying to update our ward list (they are SO out of date. About half of the members dont live here anymore! grrrrr.) and we knocked on the door of someone who wed never heard of. Her name is Dora. Shes got 60 years and opened the door with her eyes wide and her mouth open. She told us that she had been praying for help from God. Shes been less active for about 20 years because someone had offended her. We invited her to church and she said that she would come. We ended up calling her about 4 times to remind her about coming to church and each time she said that she would come. On Sunday morning, she walked into church with her sunday clothes on. We welcomed her in and sat her with a really sweet member, and then I went to work. I ran around to just about all the members of the Relief Society that I could find to go over and say hi to her. She got swarmed by hugs and kisses and welcomes. It was so sweet. Later that day we went to visit her and she cried because she was so happy that she had gone back to church and about how nice all the hermanitas were to her. The church is true.
Marco is still progressing, but he still claims that he doesnt have enough faith to believe in Joseph Smith. Sometimes investigators can be a little frustrating. We are doing all that we can to get that guy to recognize the testimony that he has. He loves the church and wants to get baptized so badly, he just doesnt pass the interviews because he says not yet to the Joseph Smith Question. He has officially been without smoking and drinking for an entire month. little by little
Thanks for everything. Enjoy the pictures!
Hermanita Christensen
Me and hermana Bills with some american candy

Me and a cat. Love them!

Street in Peru

Me and Hermana Gonzales con galletas