Saturday, February 7, 2015

WEEK 80- Trial of Your Faith

JANUARY 26, 2015

Dear friends and family,

It's been a roller coaster of a week, to simply say the least.  Emotions up and down.  A few surprises.

If you haven't already heard, Sister Hansen, our Mission President's wife, unexpectedly passed away this past Wednesday night.  She was lively and healthy at 69 years old.  President was at a meeting late Wednesday night and called her after he got out.  When he got no answer, he started to worry and rushed home.  When he arrived, he found that his sweetheart had collapsed.

Here is the article from the local newspaper: 

The entire mission (220+ missionaries) and the Hansen family gathered together on Saturday morning for a sweet memorial.  No one was really sure what President was feeling or how he was going to be.  As we walked in, he shook every single missionaries hand with that big grin on his face, as he always has. He gave a beautiful sermon and testimony.  I hope to someday have a marriage and love for a companion as strong as his.  He held up his Sealing Ordinance Certificate and as he always has, reminded us that this was what it is all about.  Getting to the Temple.   Being faithful to the Lord.  Being obedient, even when times get rough.  His faith and testimony are so incredibly strong, even in this moment of great trial for him.  His foundation is built upon Christ.  What an amazing disciple of Jesus Christ!  My calling to serve the Lord in the Utah Salt Lake City Mission has even more deeper meaning to me now than ever.

There was a funeral this morning for all family and friends of the Hansen's.  We were privileged to hear from Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the 12 Apostles and Elder L. Whitney Clayton, 1st councilor in the Presidency of the 70.  Also in attendance were Elder Rasband and Hallstrom of the Presidency of the 70.

President Hansen will be getting released and we will be getting a new mission President in the next few weeks.  When I heard this news, my heart ached.  I've never lost anyone that I've been so close too, and now to lose both President and Sister Hansen at the same time.  I've never shared so many spiritual and uplifting experiences with anyone other than with President Hansen, whether it was in personal interviews, training's  or any other setting.  After the funeral this morning and before President Hansen left to the cemetery, he was giving hugs to a few of the missionaries.  As silent tears rolled down my cheeks, I stopped by and gave him one last hug and had a good few last words with him.  I know there is a reason the Lord took Sister Hansen as suddenly as He did.  I don't know why (at least not yet), but I do know there is a good reason for it.  The work will go on continue to move forward.  I will forever be grateful to the Hansen's, for who they are, and all they have done for me and for the Lord.

"And he hath brought to pass the redemption of the world, whereby he that is found guiltless before him at the judgment day hath it given unto him to dwell in the presence of God in his kingdom, to sing ceaseless praises with the choirs above, unto the Father, and unto the Son, and unto the Holy Ghost, which are one God, in a state of happiness which hath no end." (Mormon 7:7)

On another note, there a few other things that have recently happened.  First, transfers are tomorrow and my new companion is Elder Boyles--Again!  I'm excited to serve with him once again and tear it up down here in Pioneer YSA stake.  Second, our mission (and I think most North American missions) will be getting iPads in the next 2 months or so.

My faith in the Lord has been eternally increased by the experiences he has allowed me to witness in the past 18 months.  I know that as we do our best to be continually faithful to Him, we will be blessed.  We will be happy.  We will be able to face the challenges of life with greater power, power from above. 

Stay close to the Lord, and I promise He will bless you.

Elder Carroll

My favorite scriptures this week: "And behold, I say unto you, this is not all. For O how beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings,that is the founder of peace, yea, even the Lord, who has redeemed his people; yea, him who has granted salvation unto his people;

But behold, the bands of death shall be broken, and the Son reigneth, and hath power over the dead; therefore, he bringeth to pass the resurrection of the dead." (Mosiah 15:18;20)

"I have a fam'ly here on earth.
They are so good to me.
I want to share my life with them through all eternity.
While I am in my early years,
I'll prepare most carefully,
So I can marry in God's temple for eternity.
Fam'lies can be together forever
Through Heav'nly Father's plan.
I always want to be with my own family,
And the Lord has shown me how I can.
The Lord has shown me how I can." 
(Hymn #300 Families Can Be Together Forever)

Found a Green Day truck!

Dinner with Liz and friends!

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