Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Chau Liniers


Feel the love yet? I love you guys so much. I'm so sorry that things have been a little rough this week. I'll be fasting and praying my guts out for you all.

I left Liniers today because of the transfers. I love that place. I had a lot of spiritual experiences and met some incredible people. I sincerely and humbly pray that each one will endure to the end and partake of the blessed ordinances of the Temple. I met a guy on the bus who just ended his mission in Salta, (he knows my buddy Élder Thompson). He told me that Liniers was the first branch in Argentina to become a ward. Now I really feel like I underappreciated that area. I loved in to death, but there is some major history that I didn't know until the end of the two transfers I was there. Funny thing is, Elder Ellis, my comp from the MTC, is picking up where I left off, just coming out of the Villa 1114, the other infamous villa in Buenos Aires. Aguante las villas.

So I'm here in Chacarita 2, which is the same zone that I was in 3 months ago, with Elder McRory from Brigham City. We did splits before and met about 6 months ago, so in Missionary-time, we're long-time buds. We share a pension with Elder Zollinger (the duo is back) and Elder Castillo from México. I'm excited to work here, because the ward has famously awesome members. I pray that the Lord will help us find the miracles that He's been preparing.

Now for what happened my last week in Liniers. (It's always weird writing in a different transfer, because it feels like forever ago. I'm like an old man reaching back in his memory for the glory days saying "it feels like it was just yesterday." Wake up, Elder! It was just yesterday.) We got permission from the Bishop to teach and baptize a lady who lives in the west mission, but comes to stay with "La Capa" Gladys on the weekends and wants to be baptized in our ward. Her name is Crispina, and she makes me laugh so hard. She's like 70 something, and knows the Bible incredibly well. She has practically all of Psalms memorized, and throws in quotes in pretty much any situation. She also uses the frase "por ejemplo" (for example) to connect ideas that don't have anyting to do with eachother. "I have been feeling great while reading the Book of Mormon this past week. Por ejemplo, yesterday I ate Peruvian food. I love peruvian food. Por ejemplo, my grandson came to visit me the otherday, and he's a little rascal." I'll be hounding Elder Rosazza to send me pictures when she gets baptized.

We did a lot of saying good-bye to the amazing people we've met while here. Liniers has it's weaknesses, but it's an incredibly fertile part of the Lord's vinyard, and continues pumping out missionaries like a ward in Utah. (Two more leave this week which I believe will make the count 7.) I'm really grateful for the time I had in Liniers, and I'm excited for the transfer that just began here in Chacarita.

Oh, a quick random note. In the two transfers that I left la Villa 31, President Ayre received revelation to send Elders to the back of the villa, where we were practically discouraged to ever go. The Juncal ward had 50 baptisms. In 3 months. Elder Zollinger and I died laughing, because the Bishop had a thing against the people from the Villa. Luckily there's lots of support now that about 80% of the members are from the Villa, and other awesome ward leaders who aren't afraid to enter it. Oh I miss it there. :)

That's all for me this week. Mom I'll be on the edge of my seat next week to hear all about Annie's kids. I'm ready to put all the new quotes in my list of funny quotes I've heard during the mission.

I love you all so much. ¡Hasta la próxima semana! ¡Hurra por Israel!

-Elder Goff

P.S. Pictures:

1. José's kind of a camera hog.
2. José, Hermana Orellana, and José's aunt Gladys (not the other Gladys) and us after another awesome Bolivian lunch.
3. This stud's name is Israel. He saved our lives by helping us eat lunch. We can't enter any house unless there's another adult male present, and they all work on Mondays. But Israel was more than willing. :)
4. After a ridiculous storm. I don't know if you can tell, but there's a mark from our scripture bags where we didn't get wet, which gave us a good laugh.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Reflections about my Year Mark (sent August 18, 2014)

First of all, next week is transfers, so I won't be writing again until next Tuesday.

Okay, I got over myself about the whole Yeark Mark thing. I was really sad about it for a while thinking about how it's all half way over, but after pondering about it more, the Spirit confirmed to me about how great that is. I have a year of incredible spiritual experiences to use for another year of working in the greatest work there is. Now for the questions Mom sent me, and snippets of the answers that I wrote in my journal throughout the week.

What are the Highlights? Baptisms! That's an obvious one. There's nothing greater than watching a sincerely repented soul take upon themselves the name of their Savior after being washed clean of their sins. But also many of my favorite memories have been the hard times- or just the straight up crazy ones. The danger, the wildness, persecution- it all helps me see the awesome power of the Lord's protection. But the greatest highlights of all time have been the unexpected moments when the Lord poured out His love for me through His Spirit. Whether it be in a hard time, after a spiritual moment, or for no apparent reason other than to just tell me that He loves me, I've had more experiences feeling the divine sensation of my Heavenly Father's love than in any other time of my life, and that is sacredly precious to me.
What are some struggles that have caused you to grow? The obvious one is what's been going on in the family back home. Without getting too much into detail about such a personal topic, I've grown a greater appreciation for Eternal Families, and my testimony has evolved into seeing every aspect of the Gospel relating to God's plan to make earthly families something eternal. How glorious is the Plan of Salvation, and the Atonement of Jesus Christ, when thought of in that respect. Other struggles would just be the lamer ones, like misunderstandings or friction bvetween companions that have taught me humility and patience. Robberies, no electricity, and persecution from religious zealots just make me laugh.
What have you learned from your companions?
   Elder Ellis and Elder Anderson- The biggest thing I've learned from them was following the Spirit to prepare for lessons and teaching in unity. We were terrible at Spanish, but at least we did it in a unified way!
   Elder Pirez- Haha, well seeing as I only really understood about 10 words the entire six weeks we were together, I'd say his example is what taught me the most. This guy works hard. No wonder he's an assistant now.
   Elder Fernandez- I learned pretty much everything else in training that Elder Pirez couldn't tell me. :) Also how not to get bothered by little things like differences in sense of humor, or another Elder sharing the pension that pushes you into traffic, and calls everyone sinners. Elder Fernandez taught me humble patience.
   Elder Bobadilla- Oh man, I've been secretly hoping that President had plans to put us together again because 1.5 weeks wasn't enough. This kid is humble, and loves people like I can't believe. I looked up to him so much, and I still do. He's rocking it as a zone leader now.
   Elder Valladolid- Patience. Haha! We're good friends now. But that's the biggest thing I learned. Also, we had a lot of success in an area that was supposedly "dead". He helped me learned that dead proselyting areas don't exist.
   Elder Critchlow- This kid's like a brother to me, and I love my brother. He's a lot like Elder Bobadilla (infact, they're companions now, haha). He's one of the few people that have rivaled my own mother in making me feel loved, and that's a talent that few people possess. He taught me how to better develop charity for absolutely everyone.
   Elder Adamson- This guy's direct. He sure helped me with that. Just say it like it is to the investigator. Fornication's a sin. If you don't go to Church, you need to repent. Your Catholic baptism as a baby is invalid. Haha, what a stud.
   Elder Aróstica- Aww, we were together so short a time, that I didn't have much time to learn something from him. But we were great buds. I guess I learned how to laugh in all kinds of situations.
   Elder Rosazza- I've learned how to drop people who aren't going to progress. We aren't here to waste the Lord's time. If they aren't prepared, we've got to let the Lord take care of that, and move on with those that He's prepared.
What are your goals for next year? Write in my journal everyday, atleast just a little bit. I can't let another day go by without recognizing the Lord's had. I'm going to master Castellano until I sound like a legit porteño. I'm going to do excercise more faithfully, because I miss being a skinny 150 lbs kid. I want to baptize weekly which is the standard of excellence. Everyone needs the ordinance of baptism, and I want to help them have that opportunity. Finally, I want to entirely yield myself to the Lord. I want to be completely consecrated, and allow Him to change me into the Celestial Being He sees me as. I want to be overflowing with charity for every person I meet, just as my Savior is.
What investigators have impacted you personally? Everyone who has rejected the Gospel for one reason or another. I won't put their names for privacy reasons, but they helped me realize a little bit of how Heavenly Father feels when I reject something He knows will make me happy. Those who influenced me for good are too many to write. A few examples are: Beatriz, who broke down the door to get baptized at 73 years old, Andrea, who had been praying for the Lord's representatives to come to her, and recognized us when she saw us, The Vilma Family, who were the most prepared I had ever seen, and accepted baptism 3 minutes after they met us, and kept every commitment until they had to move to Bolivia (we passed the referral to the Bolivian missionaries, and I pray that they were able to accept the Gospel there.), Gladys who was always happy inspite of an insane amount of opposition. The list can go on forever.
How have you come closer to Christ? I've learned so much about my Savior I feel inferior in trying to describe it. His love for me and every one of God's children is indescribeably incredible. His Atoning sacrifice that allows me to start over again and again until I become the perfect being that Heavenly Father wants me to be deserves all of my worshipful and adoring gratitude. Jesus Christ has become not only my leader and my God, someone to whose cause I want to consecrate myself. I want to be His best friend in the Celestial Kingdom. He's helped me see my many faults, and put His hand on my shoulder, comforting me when I need it, and pushing me to improve. I love Him.

Well this went much longer than I planned, and I don't even have time to talk about all of the great things that happened this week. Really quickly, Kiara was baptized, who is this awesome daughter of an investigator who is incredibly prepared, but can't be baptized until she and her less interested husband get married. It was a spiritual experience, and I felt inspired during her confirmation to bless her with the strength to be an example to her family so that the rest of the members can join the Church, and be sealed in the Temple. I pray with all of my heart that this happens.

I love you all so much, and I'm praying for every one of you. ¡Hasta la próxima semana! ¡Hurra por Israel!

-Élder Goff

P.S. Pictures
1. We did this Super Family Night with four different families. It was really spiritual, and everyone brought food!
2. I made chocolate chip cookies, and now I'm famous.
3. The Bravo Family. I don't get why it's latino culture to not smile in pictures, becasue they're a hilarious family! But they're the ones who have nieces in Utah.
4. Kiara's baptism with Hermano Zúñiga baptizing her.
5. Jared wants me to put as the caption "El mejor Líder Misional que he tenido en toda mi misión." Haha, Jared's an awesome Ward Mission Leader who has become one of my best friends. He's heading off to the Brasil Campinas Mission in a few weeks.
6. After Kiara's baptism, the Zúñiga, Bravo, and Capararo families took us out to eat at a Peruvian restaraunt. I was the only one there who wasn't Peruvian or a decendant of Peruvians. 'Merica! But at least I have a brother in Peru, so I guess I kinda qualify.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Four more for the Lord. Take that Satan.


Before anything, I´d better add a disclaimer to my subject line. I´m not taking credit. It was an incredible miracle that the Lord gave us four confirmations in one Sunday in a ward that´s struggling bit. I don´t want anyone thinking that I´m challenging the Devil to anything. Although with the Lord we can take him.

So anyway, yeah, Nicole, Consuelo, and José were all confirmed this last Sunday, along with Samuel, this giant stud that the Hermanas have been teaching. It was extremely spiritual, and I had another cool experience with the gift of tounges as Heavenly Father directly confirmed Nicole a member of His Church and gave her an incredible blessing through me. I was honored that He allowed me to stand there and be His mouthpiece.

RY-GUY´S ALMOST IN THE FIELD! I´m so excited for you bro! Half of the people we teach are Peruvian, and the second they tell me where they´re from, I interupt and tell them about you. ¨Nosotros somos de Per--¨ ¨¡MI HERMANO ESTÁ ALLÁ!¨ Luckily Peruvians are awesome, so instead of being stunned and turning it into an awkward moment, they just get excited along with my patriotic Peruvian companion, and we´re all suddenly best friends. So thanks for your missionary efforts down here in Buenos Aires even though you´re on the other side of the continent. :)

Great news! Gladys, the world´s most dedicated recent-convert-turned-missionary, is finally having success! Her friend Crispina, lives in the West misison, but comes to stay with her every weekend, and suddenly became interested in the Church. After talking with her, she began plowing through the Book of Mormon starting from where we left off in 3 Nephi 11. When she read about baptism, she described a feeling like a lifting of a burden, and she readily accepted the invitation. She came to Church, and afterwards described her dertimination to ask the Jehovah´s Witnesses to stop visiting her, because she´s found the true Church. We didn´t encourage her in telling off other preachers, but I secretly admire her zeal.

So it sounds like you´ve all heard about the new focus of missionary work in getting an investigator to the Temple. I´m so grateful for this shift in focus. I mean I love baptisms, and I´m right along with the rest of the missionaries inwardly chanting ¨¡Bau-ti-zar! ¡Bau-ti-zar!¨ But this new focus resparked my love for the Temple again, even though I can´t go every day. Baptism is the door to the Kingdom of God, but the Temple is in the center of the Kingdom of God. It doesn´t make any sense to enter the walls of a city and just stand there looking at the palace. ENTER IT! Those sacred buildings are modeled after the buildings already built in the Celestial Kingdom. I´m honored to be an escort to the Temple, rather than a guide to baptism- however important that first ordinance may be.

Love you guys so much. Thanks for all that you´re doing! Hasta la próxima semana. ¡Hurra por Israel!

-Élder Goff

P.S. Pictures

1. A drawing a 7 year old girl of a family we´re teaching drew of us. Apparently I´m going bald. Dad, please send me you´re Rogain.

2. This cool map of the americas in the nearby mall.

3. I officially made homemade empanadas. You may all celebrate my success as an international chef. (I´ve perfected three dishes now: Empanadas, Chocolate Chip Cookies, and Top Ramen.)

4. This is a Bolivian dish that José´s aunt made us. It´s called Falso Cornejo. (Fake Rabbit) It´s good, but if it weren´t for the name, it wouldn´t be Minstagram worthy (Missionary Instagram Hahaha! I think I´m so clever.)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Good week. (send August 4, 2014)


I love you all so much, and yes I miss you and all. But don´t. You. Dare. Say anything about my benchmark next week. Please and thank you. :) I love being on a mission, and when people make remarks about ¨Hump day¨ I just feel sad, and start to think about the end of it all instead of the fact that right now I´m supposed to be consecrated to the Lord. If I see one more Elder make the hump day signal with a hand slowly declining and the crashing airplane noises, I might go crazy. Please keep the count-down on the inside, and we can be happy together when it´s all over. You´re all the best, and I can´t wait to talk more about mission experiences when we´re all together! :)

A few weeks ago it was freezing, and everyone was telling us about how the worst was yet to come. Now it´s oddly warm. So warm that we wore just our white shirts, ties, and slacks instead of bundling up. All the people who were ignoring us, began to do their lame heckling again as they realized who we are with those insults that don´t make any sense and just make me laugh. It´s good to be back. :)

This week was awesome! Remember Consuelo who has nieces in Utah? She and her daughter were baptized this Sunday along with this awesome kid named José! (I talked about him two weeks ago in the letter that didn´t come through.) It was kinda rough leading up to the baptism with the ward leaders who are intent on baptisms only on Saturday. We´re trying hard to work in harmony with them, but in this case it was impractical for several reasons, and José´s aunt/soon-to-be-adopted-mom wouldn´t be able to make it. Also nobody comes to Saturday baptisms as shown with Gladys. But after praying together as a companionship, we felt inspired that Sunday was the day that the Lord wanted them to be baptized, and we went for it anyway, praying fervently that the leaders would have a change of heart.

I was nervous the whole morning on Sunday, but when I finally saw the Bishop, he cheerfully greeted us, and I felt at ease. There were a ton of members that came even though it was a Fast Sunday, and nobody made the investigators feel awkward by complaining about the baptismal service. It was a miracle, just as all baptisms are, but I´ve come to realize something: if there´s ever a baptism that goes smoothly beforehand without any difficulties presented by the Adversary, it´s an infant baptism, which the Lord heatedly denounces in Moroni 9. The Lord´s way´s the harder way, but the only one that makes any sense. I know that baptism is an essential ordinance that EVERYONE must take to recieve their Celestial inheritance, and I´m so grateful that three more were able make this covenant.

Okay one more story: our ward mission leader is this stud, Jared, who´s just about to head out on a mission to Brazil. We were in a lesson where I was feeling frustrated with a sister complaining about the hypocrites in Church. I was feeling pretty steamed up inside, and trying to be gentle in reproving her to come to Church. But I didn´t have the Spirit, and I didn´t feel good. Jared decided to come in and assure her that she would always be welcome to church, and lovingly testify of the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Spirit was intense. She still refused, but man, I felt humbled by Jared´s example. How could I have forgotten charity? I really felt Moroni 7 slap me in the face. ¨If ye have not charity, ye are nothing.¨

I love you guys so much! Thanks for all of your prayers and efforts to drive forward the work of Salvation for our family and the family of our Heavenly Father!

1 and 2 The baptisms

3 So last Pday, we went to go find Messi jerseys, and were nervous that we waited too long after the World Cup. We found a guy on the street selling them for a decently cheap price, but we were in a hurry. So we were like, ¨Good material? Check. Doesn´t look too fake? Check. Number 10? Check. Okay, lets get out of here.¨ On the bus my comp looks at me and says ¨La talla.¨ We forgot to check the size. Chanting L-_L-L in my head, I checked it. And I saw... XXL. Crap. We got it switched today, but it was pretty hilarious.

*click, click, click* zzzzz... Huh? What? Oh, I'm emailing. *click, click, click* (sent July 28, 2014)


What happened? Waddya mean you didn't get my letter last week? I'm so ofended by the Argentine Internet, I can't even remember what I did this week. Okay I sent it again, and I hope that you got it somehow. And I repented of being so ofended, so I'll get going on what happened today.

But first of all, this computer keeps captilizing random Words, and trying to autocorrect my spelling but it doesn't realice that I'm speaking English. So if I sound like a noob, sorry. It's not my fault. Hahaha :)

So this week was interesting. More tan anything, I'm just tired. Like ridiculously exhausted. I've fallen asleep just about every night while I was praying. I'm usually praying about something really fervently at 10:30 like "Heavenly Father, please bless Rocio's boyfriend that his heart will soften and they can get married and be baptized, because she's so ready... and it would... be.. so... zzzzzz..." Then I suddenly wake up and realize that my knees hurt and there's no more blood in my legs. And it's like one in the morning. "Oh. I don't remember what I was praying about. Perdón, Padre. En el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen." Elder Rosazza's given up on waking me up, and even took about 20 pictures of me with my own camera. Hahaha

Lately the Ward has been pretty awkward. Liniers is a really great Ward, but it seems like though the leaders clearly understand the work of Salvation, the other members aren't really getting it. I don't want to be negative and say that they're lazy, but there's not really another Word for it. Anyway, the stake has been trying hard to change that, which has made it some of the meetings awkward to bring investigators to. The leader start's "lowering the cane" on the High Priests and Elders Quórum about home teaching, temple attendance, etc. and someone starts to argue about communication, and there's not really any Spirit in the room. Luckily this last Sunday I looked over at the investigators that were in the room and they were pretty much fast asleep. I'll count that as a blessing. Chastise with love, people.

Remember Gladys? You'd better. Because she's so awesome. I'll probably be bragging about her in every one of my letters while I'm still here in Liniers. She's so excited to share the Gospel, we should just give her a badge and have her be a Sister Training Leader. Whenever a plan falls through, we look at each other and say "Vamos a ver a Gladys." She's always there and willing to go talk to her neighbors. Most of them reject her, but while comforting her, she said to us, "That's okay, I'm going to keep inviting people. One day we're going to baptize all of Barrio Scapino." (Her Little villa-esque neighborhood.) I love this lady. She's so happy, and just as pure as her baptism day.

This week I finally finished my ridiculously in-depth versión of the study activity of the Book of Mormon that Preach My Gospel suggests in chapter 5. I sent some pictures so that it will make more sense, but basically I found out that in the Book of Mormon, by my count, there are 7,742 references to Jesús Christ, 976 verses containing words directly from Him, 998 times where one of His divine characteristics is mentioned, and 1,275 doctrines or principles of His Gospel. It's been incredibly interesting to see my perspective of the Book of Mormon change as I've done this study. Now I treasure this Little copy that has marked in bright colors any time one of His names is mentioned, He speaks, He's spoken of, or His teachings are expounded upon. There's no doubt in my mind, that the Book of Mormon was divinely brought forth in this day to convice the Gentiles that Jesús is the Christ, and to realize the gathering of Israel. As Elder Holland said, "no man can come to a full testimony of this divine work with out first having a solid testimony of the divinity of the Book of Mormon."

I love you all. Keep on being so awesome. Ry-guy, I think I brag about you to my investigators more tan Mom brags to others at home about the two of us combined. ;) Remember, we're playing for keeps... 'til the Life Juice weeps. (High five through the internet, because no one understands our secret brother language.)

-Elder Goff

P.S. Pictures!

1 and 2, One of the nights I fell asleep praying. Courtesy of Elder Rosazza.
3, We live in a city called "Mataderos" which means "Cow butchers". They're really proud of their beef. One day I busted up laughing as I realized that the statue in the plaza that we pass by just about everyday is the freaking Golden calf from Moses's day. I'm preaching among idolotrous pagans.

-Élder Goff

Alma 36:24

More pictures

4-7, My intense study of the Book of Mormon

freaking siesta... & Futbol en la villa es loco. (sent July 21, 2014)

(First letter that day...)


Noooooo!! This freaking siesta is the worst thing in the world! While I was reading your letters, the lady at the internet cafe said that their closing in 5 minutes. I´m going to come back to write later today, but just in case, know that I love you guys, and that I´ll send all the pictures next week hopefully.

(Later on that day...)


Stupid siesta. Sorry I´m late. All of the locotorios closed after Argentina´s national nap time, but after some intense soccer with a bunch of members, missionaries, and a group of random kids from the nearby villa, I can talk. (Yep, soccer is still crazy. :P )

This week was a pretty good one. But not really anything new to report. We dropped a lot of investigators and found a lot of others. But I really only have one or two stories. So we´ll talk about Alan. He´s the cousin of this awesome little stud named José that we´re teaching. The first time we met Alan, he told us that he´ll listen, but made it very clear that he was ¨athiest.¨ Then we get into the lesson, and he starts helping out his little cousin understand about all these characteristics of God. Haha, Alan buddy, we caught you. Come on. Fess up. You believe in God. But he kept insisting that he didn´t. Then I felt the Spirit telling me to testify. So I basically just said something like, ¨Alan, I don´t understand. There´s a being with all of the power in the universe who loves you so much. All of the things that He has to do in keeping the universe in balance, and He cares most about your happiness. And yet you refuse to acknowledge His existence. I promise you that He´s there, and He wants wants best for you.¨ Alan looked really humbled, and looked down at his Book of Mormon and told us that he´ll keep reading and praying to find out. Then he cracked down and prayed. What a stud.

I´m almost done with the Book of Mormon again. Man, the ending is so depressing with the Nephites being destroyed, and the Jaredites destroying themselves. It really gets you in the humbled mood to listen to Moroni testify about charity. Something I realized again was that charity is the key to everything. You can´t try to be a desciple of Christ without it. You can´t even try to have faith in Him without it. You could almost put it in front of Faith as the first principle of the Gospel. I love what Moroni says when he tells us that it will make us appear ¨just as He is.¨ (Moroni 7:48). I´m going to work on praying for more charity so that I can make that happen.

I love you guys so much. I´m sorry that I was so short on time today, but I´ll be praying my heart out for you all.

-Elder Goff

P.S. Cole, you made me start decorating my Agendas. I even made a little secret page for the World Cup last transfer. :)

¡Brasil, decíme que se siente tener en casa tu papá! (sent July 15, 2014)


I´M ALIVE! Don´t worry! Haha yeah, there´s some pretty crazy riots, but luckily they´re pretty far away from where I am. Liniers is tranquilo. The rioting is all happening in 9 de julio which is right outside of my old area. They´re always rioting there anyway. That´s the same street where the crazy River fans were taking over the city buses and waving flags on top while they drove them around town. It´s ¨normal¨. Haha

So transfers came around again. But nothing changed for us. Élder Rosazza and I are still together in Liniers 1, because we only had 4 and a half weeks together due to that flash transfer.

The subject line is what all the Argentines sang in the stadiums to taunt the Brazilians, their archrivals in soccer. On Sunday practically everyone was singing in unison. It was pretty funny for a while but thank goodness the World Cup is finally over. I don´t want to talk about it again for another four years. So no more stories. :P

Gladys was baptized this last Saturday and confirmed this Sunday! She was so awesome, and so happy. She only has about half her teeth, but she doesn´t let that stop her from smiling. I´m amazed by the faith that she´s shown. Despite all of her trials from living alone in a tiny house still under construction that her neighbor is trying to take away from her, she continues cheerfully telling everyone about how happy the Gospel has made her. Right before her baptism it started raining so hard we could have practically just taken her by the hand and ¨baptized¨ her standing up. But we did it the right way in the font. But with the rain and the soccer game, nobody wanted to come aside from 5 other people to whom I will be forever greatful. (Check that out. I just used the word ¨whom¨. Considering how bad my English has been getting, you should all be real proud of me.)

I´ve been anxiously awaiting this P-day in particular. I was so excited to hear about Ryan´s first week as a missionary, that I could hardly contain myself. I´m so glad that he´s doing well, and he´s going to make an incredible district leader. What a freaking stud. I love you bro!

A while back we were talking to a lady who is a devout Evangelist about the purpose of life. She bluntly rejected the truth of Eternal Families telling us that after this life she believed that we´ll just exist in the glory of Jesus forever. We won´t be brother, sister, father, mother, husband, wife or anything. We´ll just be... there. I can´t describe how sad I felt when she said that. The thought of just... being... even if it was in heaven, made me so depressed. It didn´t make any sense either. I tried my best to testify about Eternal Families, and though I could feel the Spirit so strongly, I could tell that she didn´t want to feel it.

I always thought that while on a mission I would gain a stronger testimony about the Book of Mormon, about the Atonement, or about the Restoration- and I have, more than any other time in my life, gained an incredible appreciation for each of those. But to be honest, I´ve been surprised by how strongly my testimony has been strengthened about the truthfulness of Eternal Families. God established the family in the same way He has done everything: never to end, but to forever extend in glory and power. The kind of joy and happiness that our Heavenly Father wants to give us, yes, is in His presence forever, but with a purpose. A purpose and Celestial joy that can only be found in the family bonds. Of this I humbly testify, in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

I love you guys so much. Hasta el lunes que viene. ¡Chau!

¡Hurra por Israel!

-Élder Goff

P.S. Pictures

1 and 2, Glady´s baptism. All I can say is ¡qué capa!
3. Welcome to our study session for two days this week. The power likes to go out at the worse times possible like when it´s 130 degrees and 300% humidity, or 2 degrees and 300% humidity. But it´s fixed now. Plus we found out that we have a gas heater. :)

A new low in the Internet Cafes (sent July 7, 2014)


The United League of Internet Cafes Againts Mormon Missionaries have come to a new low, and told the ciber that I´m in to count down on the timer rather than up. I have practically no time right now, so I´m going to write as fast as I possibly can translate Spanish to English in my mixed up brain.

First of all, before I forget, next week, I´ll be writing TUESDAY because of transfers.

This week was awesome. A bit rough, but awesome. Thank goodness the US lost the world cup. I don´t mean to sound like a traitor. I really wanted them to win, but I like living peacefully among the passionate soccer extremists here in Argentina. ´Merica can win when I´m in the states. :) But why is the World Cup in the winter? The two things that motivates Argentines to do absolutely nothing: Soccer and cold weather. One day, we had eight appointments set up with investigators and members present, which basically meant every hour of the day was filled with meetings or appointments. I was super excited about that, until EVERYONE fell through.

Except Gladys. She´s incredible. She´s a humble little old lady that works for the political party currently in power in Argentina. And she´s getting baptized on Saturday! We´ve been teaching her a little bit everyday since we´ve met her, and she hasn´t failed us once. May God bless her heart. She´s been inviting just about everyone to the lessons, but with very little success. But I think she´s more positive in the face of rejection than we are, because she smiles everytime she tells us of another rejection. One day she told us: ¨Oh! I´ve been meaning to tell you. I invited my friend to hear from you guys and she told me that the Mormons in the United States burn their children and wives as sacrifices. I didn´t believe her, but I thought I should tell you.¨ With horrified looks on our faces, we told her that it wasn´t true, and she just laughed at the ridiculous lies that people have been telling her about the Church. She´s assured us that she´s excited about her baptism, and she can´t wait to be a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ for the rest of her life. What an example!

Okay, we paid for a little more time. Phwew!

So when Argentina plays, the country shuts down, except for us and the theives. So President Ayre has been looking for ways to keep us busy, safe, and in the apartment. When Switzerland played Argentina, he invited us to an Argentine cultural activity as a mission that he recieved permission from the Area Presidency to do. Guess what we did. Go on. Guess. We watched the game. YES! It was so much fun. We had to take out 2 hours of our P-day, but it was worth it. I can´t even describe how crazy we went when Argentina scored in the 117th minute. We went crazier than the fans in Sao Paulo! ...okay maybe not. We still had our shirts on. And we weren´t drunk.

Anyway, thanks for all you guys are doing. I´m loving serving a mission for the Lord. I know that this Gospel is true. I know that our Family can be together forever. I´ve been learning so much about the importance of sincerity in prayer. Lots of the people here are scared to try praying that comes from the heart, and isn´t memorized or chanting. But while reading the prayers offered by Christ in 3 Nephi, prayer doesn´t require eloquent language. Just sincerity. With a real desire to do what you promise to do. May our Heavenly Father bless you all.

Ry-guy, I love you so much, and wish the best for you in your mission. Ahora, ¡escríbame! :)

¡Hurra por Israel!

-Elder Goff


1 through 3, The game. The Zone Leaders already knew about it and brought a bunch of gear.

4. Remember the guy who told us that we looked different than the Jehovah´s witnesses and Evangelics because we didn´t knock on random people´s doors and interogate them? He got baptized and came to look for me at the Misisonary Farewell that happens every transfer for the whole mission. Alfredo, you´re a stud!!!

Pictures from last week.

5 and 6, I´ve been so crafty lately. Check out this thing I made to help investigators understand modern day prophets and apostles. Thank you Liahona and Guaymallen box.

7, Here´s the next language I´m gonna learn. Quechua. It´s a native language in Perú, so you and I will be able to speak in three different languages, Ry-guy.

Re: Pictures!

Dang it. That´s Alfredo. The other one is of me and my MTC comps all grown up. Awww...

On Mon, Jul 7, 2014 at 1:30 PM, Adam Goff <agoff@myldsmail.net> wrote:
1 through 3, The game. The Zone Leaders already knew about it and brought a bunch of gear.

4. Remember the guy who told us that we looked different than the Jehovah´s witnesses and Evangelics because we didn´t knock on random people´s doors and interogate them? He got baptized and came to look for me at the Misisonary Farewell that happens every transfer for the whole mission. Alfredo, you´re a stud!!!

Vivo todavía a pesar de la loca copa mundial :) (sent June 30, 2014)


Soccer is still crazy. I tell you, this sport. The next time somebody tell me that religion brings out the worst in people, I´ll laugh in their face. Really, it´s not that bad. But just pray that if the US plays Argentina (which is pretty likely) that they lose. Or win. I´m not really sure which would be better. :)

Anyway, about something more important. By the time I go to bed tonight, RYAN WILL BE A MISSIONARY!!! AAAAAHHHHH!!!! I´m so freaking proud of that stud I can´t even describe it! And not even just because he´ll finally write me every week! ;) Thanks for sending me his talk, I downloaded it and I´m going to listen to it in the apartment. And do a happy dance: . (Check that out. My missionary buddy from  Elder Thompson showed me that. Isn´t that cool? No? Well to a missionary isolated from the internet apart from this email it is.)

This week was awesome. Guess what? We had investigators come to church! It´s been pretty rough in that department for the past couple of weeks, but finally we have progressing investigators! That family that has nieces in Utah has really warmed up to us and loves the missionary lessons. They invited us over for dinner last night. They made chicken with Peruvian condiments. Elder Ry-guy, lemme tell ya. You´re gonna be eating real good in Perú. Disfrútalo, amigo. During dinner, we talked about their experience at church, and Consuelo (the aunt of the two girls in Utah) kept telling us about how much she appreciated how they talk about the family in church. She liked how personal the Gospel was taught and applied to everyday life rather than mere chanting, singing and traditional worship of the Evangelic churches that she´s been going to. It was interesting to see someone realize the difference between worldly religion and true religion. Her husband Alejandro was so excited to be in church again for the first time in about 20 years, and he excitedly described to his wife what a Bishop was, and how the hymns work. They have an incredible future ahead of them, and I´m very humbled and excited for the opportunity I have to teach them the Everlasting Gospel so that they can be an eternal family.

We also watched a few Mormon Messages at their request. One was a new one that I hadn´t seen about the real, enduring love of an elderly couple despite the difficulties of aging. I almost cried thinking about my own grandparents and their love for each other. Thank you so much Grandpa and Grandma for all that you´ve done to teach me by example of the powerful love that Elder Scott speaks of in the end of the video. (The quote was in Spanish, so I don´t remember how it goes, but if you can find video, watch it.)

I had an incredible experience last night while praying. I won´t get too far into detail in respect of its sacred nature, but let me tell you, that our Heavenly Father loves our family. I was assured more than I think I ever could have been that He does. The power of the Holy Ghost is indescribable, but motivates me to try and teach others about it. I know that my Heavenly Father is concious of us and our struggles. It´s my goal to overcome my imperfections, and more effectively show others about this.

I love you guys. Never give up. Keep faithful in the Gospel. I promise you beyond all the words I can use, that it will be worth it.

I love you all and I´ll talk to you next week! ¡Hurra por Israel!

Elder Goff

P.S. I forgot the camera cord again. (Dangit!) Sorry. Expect some cool pictures next week.

I had a catchy subject line all prepped, but I can't remember it now. (sent June 23, 2014)


Hey! I love you all so much! I only get to say that once a week, but I hope you remember that. Ryan's joining me out here in 8 days! Welcome to the best club you'll ever be a part of, bro!

This week was a whole lot better than last week. We tried some new things to try and find investigators. Mom, you'd be proud of us, we set up an incredibly attractive stand in the park that would be worthy of your epic Scrapbook Expo. (And by that I mean this little tiny bedside table with a bunch of pamphlets, copies of the Book of Mormon, and pictures of Christ taped to the sides. But for two 20 year old foreigners in a po-dunk Argentine neighborhood it was pretty impressive.) Since nearby all the people were selling World Cup merchandise, people naturally thought we were selling as well, but then we would begin to talk about the Restoration and how this message was free of charge, and available to everyone.

Consuelo, who we met while doing this, gave us her address and told us to pass by. When we did so, we met her husband Alejandro who turns out to be a less active member with a lot of good memories about the Church and is interested in returning. Consuelo has never been to the Church, but has two young nieces who were recently baptized. Guess where they live. Utah. She excitedly talked about them and showed us a bunch of pictures on Facebook. One entry on Facebook showed where they moved to. Okay now guess where that was. I'll let you guess for real this time. Okay ready? Highland. No, I'm not kidding. I was flipping out. The family is really humble, and interested in the Church. We have an appointment with them soon, and I'm beyond excited to talk to them. They readily accepted the Book of Mormon and the beat up pamphlet of the Family: A Proclamation to the World that we gave them, and display them on their living room shelf. Haha! Capos.

I had a really interesting experience in my personal study this morning. I'm reading through the Book of Mormon, marking every time Jesus Christ personally speaks. Some times it gets tricky, especially in the ending of 3 Nephi, because Christ quotes Malachi, saying that His Father is speaking, but Malachi says that it's Jehovah speaking. I was a little confused, and though fundamentally it doesn't matter, as the words of One are the words of Both, I decided to pray to understand it. By doing so, I was reminded of how many times Christ says that the Father commanded Him to say something. I then thought of some of the scriptures in the Pearl of Great Price that talk about how fallen man cannot be in the presence of the Father. I felt the Spirit confirm to me that Jesus Chrsit was chosen to be our Advocate with the Father, just as the prophets have always said. Jesus Christ acts as a perfectly unified messenger of the Father, who then talks to a prophet, who talks to mankind. In this way, we as mankind are still able to talk directly to our Heavenly Father, even though we are separated from Him, in addition to feeling the influence of the Holy Ghost.

I don't know if that made any sense, but it was a great experience realizing why sometimes in the scriptures, the difference between the identity of God as the Father, and God as Jesus Christ is hard to tell. It blew my mind how wise Heavenly Father is in selecting from the beginning a Savior, and Divine Advocate for mankind, and how central Jesus Christ is in yet another point of the Gospel.

I love you all, thanks for all that you're doing. ¡Hurra por Israel!

-Elder Goff

P.S. Pictures:

1. This is the nicest lunch I've ever had cooked by missionaries. Milanesas Caseras!
2. This sweet old couple has a tiny apartment filled with Coca-cola merchandise. They insisted on giving me this glass with Polar Bears running a relay race.
3. This stuff is Locro, some traditional Argentine food we ate for Dia de la Bandera. It wasn't too special, but the lady who made it is the kindest little old lady I've ever met, so it had an incredible aftertaste.

¡Feliz Día del Padre! ¡Feliz Aniversario! (June 16, 2014)


Are you guys partying it up or what? Father´s day, and Becca and Cole´s first anniversary? Wow! I hope you guys had a great day, and I send all my love and prayers with you guys. ¡Feliz día a todos!

So you´re not going to believe this, but there was another Flash Transfer. And I don´t even have a reason to say April Fools this time. It´s for real. My awesome Chilean buddy Elder Aróstica was whisked away to San Cristobal in La Boca, nearby, but out of the zone. I´m going to miss that kid so much. My new companion´s name is Elder Rosazza from Peru, (nope, sorry Ry-guy, not Chiclayo). He´s really cool, but a whole lot more serious, and so I haven´t tried scaring him yet... we´ll see.

Let´s talk about the World Cup real quick to get it out of the way, and because I think that for the past few paragraphs I was the only one in Argentina not talking about it. It´s a pain. But it´s also hilarious. Nobody wants to talk. Or if they do, they stare directly at the TV practically the whole time, even if they don´t care about the game. One lady was so passionately angry about the calls in the Brazil vs Croatia game, and when I asked who she wanted to win, she told me she didn´t really care. ??? And Sunday Argentina played Bosnia. Hahahha!!! It was quite the sight. People were wearing rediculous baby blue and white hats around in the streets, lighting off fireworks, and hanging gigantic Argentine flags from the apartments. And it was practically sure as fact that Argentina would win. But the city SHUT DOWN. I´m even still in Capital Federal, but there was NO ONE out in the street. The funny thing was, even though I couldn´t watch the games, I could tell the score because the streets were silent, and then suddenly all the houses echoed ¨GGGGGOOOOOOOAAAALLLLL!!!!!¨ I can´t help but laugh off the frustration. I can´t wait to see what happens when Argentina plays some games with more risk. Soccer is weird.

This week was rough. We got soooo lost. Being two new missionaries in the area without any idea about the area, with hardly any investigators left over from other Elders, and with the World Cup in full swing, we felt a bit stuck. We didn´t really know where to look, and I was feeling pretty terrible about our past few week´s numbers, especially being Father´s Day. I spent the whole week repenting to my Heavenly Father for such a poor Father´s Day gift. And Sunday night, He responded with a flood of inspiration of creative ways to find investigators. Elder Rosazza and I are excited to try some out, and rededicated ourselves to just outright talking to people in the streets. I read Doctrine and Covenants 52 this morning, and it says at least five times that the Lord expects us to ¨preach by the way¨, or in other words, talk with just about anyone. So we´re going to do a whole lot better about looking for ways outside of the ordinary to find people to teach the Everlasting Gospel.

I want to again send all the love from my heart to each of you. I´m so grateful for all of your prayers and especially for all that you´re doing to serve our Heavenly Father at home. Keep serving. I promise you that it is well beyond worth it.

Hasta la próxima semana. ¡Hurra por Israel!

-Élder Goff

P.S. Pictures!

1-4 The Guaymallen factory is in my area! So last P-day, Elder Aróstica and I went and bought a big box each for pretty cheap. Guaymallen is a popular brand of Alfajor, which is basically this cookie/brownie thing with Dulce de leche in the middle. Argentines love them. And so do I. And according to that second picture, apparently so do Chileans. :)

5. Mom, you´re going to love this. We were talking with the Elder´s Quorum president, and his little 5 year old son kept wanting to talk to me about ninja turtles. Then his 7 year old daughter gave me these. I´d say that drawing of me looks better than any of the pictures that I´ve sent you!

Argentine Dedicatory Prayer for the Work of Salvation (sent June 9, 2014)

Also, President Ayre sent us this copy of the Dedicatory prayer Elder Ballard gave to dedicate Argentina for the work of Salvation recently. It´s incredible.

Dear Elders and Sisters,

A couple of months ago, Sister Ayre and I had the privilege of representing the mission at a special event here in Buenos Aires at el Parque, 3 De Febrero  wherein Elder Ballard dedicated Argentina for the Work of Salvation.  I thought it would be important for each of you to have a copy of this sacred prayer.  After reading it, I am sure you will feel a confirmation of the spirit as I have that the Lord has blessed our great mission such that we will continue to see great growth in Convert Baptisms.

Recently at a Stake Conference, President Gonzalez referenced Elder Ballard's blessing and then stated that we are now in Buenos Aires seeing success in convert growth like never before in the history of this great area. What a blessing it is for each of us to be servants of the Savior at this great moment in Buenos Aires.

We love you all very much.  Thank you for your diligence in sharing the Gospel and blessing the lives of so many here in Buenos Aires.

President and Sister Ayre

Argentina Dedicatory Prayer
February 21, 2014
Parque Tres de Febrero

Our Beloved Heavenly Father,
As thou canst see, we are gathered as a small group of leaders of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints here in the Parque Tres de Febrero, as near as we know to the place where Apostle Melvin J. Ballard, Elders Rey L. Pratt and Rulon S. Wells of the Seventy, and others gathered 89 years ago, to dedicate, at the direction of the First Presidency, all of the lands of South America.
By Assignment of the First Presidency, our purpose this morning, dear Father, is to offer and record a dedicatory prayer specifically upon the land of Argentina. And so we ask thee, dear Father, to pour out thy Spirit and power upon the leadership and the members of the Church here in Argentina. We invoke a blessing as part of this dedicatory prayer upon the area presidency and the area seventies, upon the stake and district presidents, the bishops and branch presidents, the Melchizedek Priesthood leaders, and upon all of the sisters who carry such a great responsibility in building up the kingdom of God. We invoke a blessing upon the youth of Argentina, the young adults, the young married couples, the boys, the girls, that thy Holy Spirit will fall upon them, and that they will have spiritual experiences and insight come to them beyond anything they have experienced thus far in their lives, that they will have those feelings and inspiration come from thee as to what they can do in their individual lives to enhance and move this work forward ever more effectively and powerfully in the future than it has in the past.
Now we know, Heavenly Father, there were a handful of thy children at the dedication of South America 89 years ago. Today, in Argentina, there have been baptized over 425,000 of thy children who are living today, and we pray thy blessings to be upon them wherever they may be living and whatever their circumstances may be, that we may find them, we may bless them, we may bring them unto thee and to thy Beloved Son, that they may receive the full blessings thou hast in store for thy faithful children.
We have, Heavenly Father, in this area almost 7,000 young full time missionaries; it is a miracle. We thank thee for this miracle and we pray thy blessings upon every full-time missionary serving in Argentina, that they will draw close to thee and to the leaders, to the bishops and the stake presidents, the Priesthood Quorums, and the Relief Society and Young Women and Primary, and they will work together to find those that have lost their way, who once had testimonies. Bless their efforts to reignite in their hearts the testimony of thy Beloved Son, the Savior and Redeemer of the world.
We pray thee, Father, to bless every branch and every ward, and every stake and district, and every mission in Argentina, that they will see a clear vision of how working together with all that has been given unto them since that day 89 years ago and that they will hasten the work of salvation that we have been asked to do by President Thomas S. Monson.
We pray humbly this morning for thy approbation, thy blessing, thy mercy, Heavenly Father, to be able to accelerate thy cause in preparing Argentina along with all the other lands of the world for that day when thy Beloved Son will come again. By the authority of the holy apostleship vested in me, and in the name of thy Beloved Son, I dedicate this land to thy work. We ask thee, dear Father, to reach down and touch and bless the lives of the leaders, the political leaders, the civic leaders, the business leaders, all of those who have a voice or a responsibility of any kind in affecting and strengthening this country, that the current challenges and problems that they are facing that there will be men and women of integrity raised up by thee with a vision to know what to do, and how to do it, to stabilize the economy and to stabilize the affairs of Argentina so thy work can prosper and go forward.
We are so deeply grateful, as part of this dedicatory prayer, to acknowledge the life and ministry of the Prophet Joseph Smith, and for the Priesthood that was restored to the earth to him through John the Baptist and Peter, James, and John. We are grateful for Moroni and the Book of Mormon, and to all others whom thou hast sent to restore to the earth the fullness of thy everlasting gospel.
And now we ask thee that all those blessings pronounced upon all of South America by Melvin J. Ballard 89 years ago may be accelerated as part of this dedicatory prayer of Argentina. May there now be a new day, a new enthusiasm, a new commitment in the hearts of all of thy children, both member and those who are not.
We are grateful Father as a family to be here this morning. We have had sons and grandsons who have served thee in Argentina. Heavenly Father, we thank thee for the privilege to dedicate this land unto thy work, and leave this blessing upon these leaders that sit here and all other leaders within the boundaries of Argentina, to move forward thy work of salvation with a renewed spirit and enthusiasm to build up thy Church. This prayer of dedication and blessing we ask for humbly, in the sacred and in the beloved name of thy Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, amen.