Monday, April 27, 2015

Upe buenas!‏

Pues, this week went pretty well, we ended on a really good note in my last area, I´m happy with how it ended with my companion and I think he´s ready to face the challenges of the mission, or the blessings- better stated! I had transfers and got moved to Toyopan, it´s a place in San Jose, the city is actually called Guadalupe. I was assigned to be a zone leader so I´m here learning a ton, trying to help the Lord even more in every way I can and learn as much as I can. I love getting assignments in the mission because I get to learn so much! My new companion is Elder Rivera, he has 1 change left in the mission, so I need to keep him in shape to finish strong haha but he´s actually super cool, he is from Honduras but speaks a lot of English, so I´m talking in English with him to help him out. I know that this is the Lords work, I have absolutely no doubt, I can feel it everyday and I´m grateful for the time He allows me to have here in Costa Rica, working in His vineyard. I hope and intend to try and always serve Him with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. I´ve come to appreciate more fully the Savior´s Atonement in my life, as I have studied what he did for me in greater depth, I´ve found my love for him has grown. I try everyday to be able to help God´s children here in Costa Rica come to know what I now have learned and felt. I encourage you to ponder the Savior´s Atonement, think of the role and importance he plays in your life. If necessary, restructure your life to put it in harmony with his teachings, his example, and his loving desire to ¨bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man.¨ (Moses 1:39) 

I love you guys a lot, I thank you for everything you´ve done for me, and hope to be able to write you again next week! 

Elder Lohberg

**from typing back and forth:
Mom: Tell me about transfers! Where are you now? Diego sent me a photo and told me Nopal San Jose - but I looked that up on a map and it doesn't show me anything - so where are you?  Tell me about your new comp (what you know) etc
AND how was your last week? 

Aaron: Diego took a photo last night to tell you, the ward is called Toyopan, its in San Jose, Quadalupe, or my area is called El Carmen. President called me and asked me to be a zone leader here. My companion is cool, he only has 1 change left in the mission and then he goes back to Honduras, he´s 25. The area is pretty calm, it´s not to hot or anything. We have like, 24 missionaries, or 22 in the zone. 3 districts. Gunna have to learn a lot quickly=) haha, the thing I love about assignments is learning, what i don't like is the responsibility hahaha but it´s all good, everything will help me in the end.

Mom: wow! So - would that zone be west or east mission you think?  Sending home a ZL - hopefully he will sprint to the finish and teach you tons!  I assume the new mission president will be in the San Jose area as well? So tell me how transfers went today then? Did you go earlier or just regular with everyone else? Did you meet up at central park? 
Aaron: It´s east mission, with the gringo president. But I´ve been thinking a lot and it would be cool to be in the mission, assuming that Elder Parker and Elder Toledo stay here haha, at least Elder Toledo. He seems like he wants to work hard still but I´m not sure. The new president in the east mission will be here in this office, in Zapote, the new one will be in a new office that they´re building in Escazu I think, San Jose but I
 can´t remember. We met up at like 9-10 in Parque Central in San Jose, and then we had to wait on our zone to leave and he came  back. It´s pretty cool here, it´s a lot of city but not to bad, i also have elders that have one of the most dangerous parts of San Jose haha, La Leon Trece, and i´ll have to go with them on divisions some time. Elder Rivera my comp told me he did divisions Thursday haha and they got robbed because  they stayed a little too late there. 

Mom: looking on the map - looks like it might be the west mission? 
Have you taken your stuff to the new apartment? What's that like?  Do you have your camera with you? Could you grab a quick picture with your new comp?
What did president say to you when he called you? 

Aaron:I do have my camera, but I forgot the cable to put the pictures on.. next week. I have a lot of pictures now but they´ll be put on super slow because they´re in a higher quality. I´ll take pictures with him this week. 
He said, Elder I have an assignment for you, I want you to go be a zone leader in Toyopan, it´s one of the biggest wards in the mission and I want to see your zone increase in confirmations, your companion has one month left so help him stay strong to the end. I only put two good missionaries together as zone leaders or Sister specialists so I expect good results, I expect baptisms and retention, I have high standards 2 months of no baptizing and you´re no longer a zone leader. And I said, okay! Haha cool stuff and all=) gotsta strive to be the example always! 

Mom: are you ok with it being such a close area? Still city?  you've not even gotten a chance to see any of the beauty of Costa Rica - just wondered how you feel about city life?
Also - I never asked you - but what did you do with the information Megan Kint gave you regarding her friend from college?  She sent his info with the suitcase stuff - just wondered what if anything happened with that.

Aaron: It´s a little boring, but it´s not ugly here or anything, just that it is city. Maybe we´ll do cool activities, who knows, anyways If I'm in the east mission i will have Limon which is one of the most beautiful parts of Costa Rica, Limon and Guanacaste (west). I totally forgot she sent me that, I will look into it again, I think I saw it and realized it would be almost impossible to find him, but I will check it again.

Mom: well this week will be interesting for you as you set out to learn a new area and a new assignment.  How many gringo missionaries are in your zone?  How many baptisms did they have last month? Are they working in that area? How was your new area last month?  What's their investigator pool look like?  Sounds like you'll have to do exchanges with other missionaries - so how does that work with being ZL? Do you always both work their areas? or does one elder go to your area while one of you will go to their area?

Aaron: I´m still learning.. I´ve asked a lot of these questions but it comes with time. I don't know how many gringos, they had 16, they´re working, my area had 2 i think, or 1, not sure, they don't have that many, gunna find a ton. I´ll be doing lots of exchanges. ZL´s do it with all their elders, like not only district leaders, so we´ll see. no, one leaves one stays.

Mom: oh and so do ZL's visit the district meetings? or do you have a district you are over as well?

Aaron: Yeah we have a district meeting, in my last zone they did.. here theirs 3 districts but the last one is just us, the sister leaders and our district leader, a little weird but meh, He told me this week is just a normal district meeting, but we´ll have zone conferences at least. 

Mom: well that's good then - so both areas will be worked not just one area.
Well I'm excited for you - excited for the change in routine - areas - comps - it will be a new start.  I look forward to NEXT week being able to hear more about what you experience this week with it all.  
I'm so proud of you Aaron and the great missionary you are!  I got teary reading your general email this week - I was reading it out loud to dad and started to cry.  So very happy - proud - full of love for you!

Aaron: It was pretty sad leaving my first area aha, but just keep swimming=) we have 3 districts, not just 2 areas, so we´ll be giving lots of followup everywhere =)=)

Mom: ya I'm sure - but change is good.
Ya I realize you have 3 districts - I meant you would be working one person in their area and one in your area when on exchanges instead of both ZL's leaving their area and working in the exchange elders area only.  
Sounds like you will be doing a lot of leg work - your area on the map doesn't look too huge - where's the building that you meet at? Will have to figure that out so I can look it up on the map :)

Aaron: oh yeah changes here is always 1 elder in each area. I don't know what the place is called but we´re their right now, it´s a pretty big building, we´re in the family history center. 
next week i will send you a ton of photos i promise.

Mom: how much more time do you have?

Aaron: Not sure like, 10 minutes or so. i think.

Mom: well - if you could tell me just one thing that you would want others to know - what would it be?  People at church ask me about you all the time - how you are doing - etc 
I always tell them you are doing well - and share what I know about what is going on with you.  

Aaron: Orrr now, I love you a lot mom!! !Stay safe and we´ll talk next week, with photos!!! =d
Tell them I´m learning so much and I love it here!! 

Monday, April 20, 2015


I´m thinking more basic subject titles will be better. One word subject headings from now on! This week went pretty tuanis, pretty cool. We had a baptism Thursday, and investigator named B got baptized, but she wasn´t able to get confirmed this Sunday (yesterday) because she went to San Jose to study. So... this next Sunday she´ll be confirmed! We´re also hoping that one of our investigators named A gets baptized! I love this work; love being out here in Costa Rica, even though its mind bogglingly hot right now, it´s awesome! I love more than anything being able to read the scriptures and listen to the words of the Prophet and the Apostles. Never before have I really enjoyed General Conference but now there is NOTHING better haha. I love you guys so much! Thanks for everything and I´ll try and write a better email next week=P

Elder Lohberg

info from emailing back and forth:
Aaron: hai mom=)

Mom: I just got home!! So glad I decided to check the emails before I got busy doing something else!! 
How the heck are you? How's your week been?
Aaron: Super duper, it´s been okay haha I´ve been having my companion do everything so he learns in our last week (i think) together. haha I'm trying to have him do ERRYTHING, and our numbers become crap doing so, but hey, oh wells! the principle is that he learns!

Mom: true - he needs to learn how to hand out books, teach etc - that's YOUR job as trainer - to teach him! haha!
So - thoughts? you should be transferred this up coming week right? so - any thoughts on where you might end up? EXCITED for the change? chance to see something else? NERVOUS to have a new comp, new area? 
You'll find out Sunday night right? So transfers would be next Monday then? If so - would you still email that day but just later in the day? 
Aaron: I hope I get changed! See some new places, meet new people! My area is super good right now, we have like 3 baptisms coming up, pretty much solid and we have 18 investigators progressing with 18 baptismal dates, I´m sure a lot of them will fall through but still I;m happy with the progress we´ve made in the area. Lots of people tell me Puntarenas or Zon a Sur, they´re both supér hot places, and dry and lots of bugs and beaches and stuff. Sunday I believe I will know what is happening, next Monday is transfers. I think so yeah, almost 100% sure we´ll email Monday. 
No not really nervous. I will go and do whatever the Lord wants=)

Mom: truly proud of you Aaron!! I KNOW you are an excellent missionary!!
I'm excited to see where you go!!  You've got bug stuff still and sunscreen?  Are you even using the sunscreen I sent?  You will need the bug stuff in the outer areas I'm sure - anywhere there's water there will be bugs :)
BUT you should also get to see some cool animals as well if you are out of the city - some missionaries have seen sloth, monkeys, an ant eater I think someone saw, iguana of course :p
Aaron: I haven't touched the bug stuff yet, lots of sunscreen.. I'm too lazy and tired to put it on... i hate sunscreen haha I'ma die from cancer here, or at the least burn my eyes out.

Mom: maybe the next mission president will let you wear sunglasses  - some missions allow it - while others don't so pray for the next one to let you do it :)
If you go to Puntarenas - that for sure is West mission - and Zona Sur looks like it would be East mission then
Aaron: I have been haha!! I pray everyday that we can! I´m almost certain that if I'm in the West mission, in Puntarenas, the president will say no, but i think the american president from Idaho might say yes! in the east mission,. Zona sur is east 

Mom: sounds like you have a lot of things happening in Heredia though so that's cool to leave it with so much going on!!  Way to work!
Any news on G and M?
What about A and R?
Who else are you working with? Anyone you've mentioned before?
Aaron: G and M told me they were going to go to church yesterday finally. but didn't.. They´re all sick so I'm not sure. Maybe next week they´ll go finally. A really wants to get baptized, R is really kind of slowly investigating everything, he´s like Brother J, he acts the same too.. but she wants to get baptized before I leave so they´re in the process of getting married. Maybe everything will get done in time this week for her, if not next month for sure. We have a lot of people but they´re the ones progressing quicker than everyone else. This last Thursday we had a baptism of someone named B, it was more like.. she really wanted to get baptized had all the times in the church and passed her interview, it wasn´t anything difficult so it was a little weird.

Mom: Dad has been experimenting making curtido - he has made several different batches of it - the last one was one of the better ones - some are too vinegary for me - he's set on trying things that you MIGHT be getting :) it's like a cabbage salad - we had it with papusas? or pipusas? at a market  - like I said dad wants to try to find what you are eating! haha! 
Aaron: I have never heard of curtido lol. We eat a ton of rice. and a Ton of beans.. and some types of meat, usually like sausage or chicken.  Pupusas, are from El Salvador. Elder Toledo made me some and I know how now, they´re super good. 

Mom: ya they were good!  We had them in Portland at that Saturday market place (food truck)
Aaron: yeah, i like them. I would like to visit El Salvador maybe one day, pass by with my wife to say hi to toledo and his wife hahaha

Mom: I'm pretty excited to see where you go! I can't even begin to tell you!!  giddy you might say :)
Have been really trying to pray to find people to have the missionaries teach in our home - pray for people to be brought to me as well.  I am trying to figure out the best way for me to do missionary work. 
maybe you and Toledo can be comps again as ZLs! That would be cool! 

Aaron: As God can put His trust in us that we WILL talk to His children if they´re in our path he´ll do it, if we never talk to them then he can´t trust us to talk to those he puts in our way. 
I really would like to, but he´s companions with Elder Mills, who was where I'm at right now 7 and a half months too, he baptized Diego, but they only have one change together, so i don't think so. =( maybe one day, but he´s in the east mission right now, so is elder parker but elder parker should have changes before the split I think. 

Mom: so IF you are in the East mission - then since the temple is out of the mission you won't be able to go any more while on your mission? Do you know?
Do you know exactly when the split will happen?
Aaron: Nope, no more temple. July 1st I believe, I heard that President leaves June 28th. But the assistants told me May was his last month, and we have a mission goal of a baptism per missionary for president in may so I'm not sure. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Hello! How are you guys!‏

Diego, Elder Lohberg with a photo bomb from Elder Henry :D
I need to write this one pretty quick, because I´m almost out of internet time. This week went really well, we had a multizone meeting with President Wilkinson, and then we went on divisions with the assistants to the President, I learned so much in these last 3 days that I was a little shocked haha, by all the information. I´m trying to organize my thoughts and what I have learned to put them into practice, to become a better missionary. I learned about the importance of planning, and not just doing it to do it, but effectively planning out what we´re going to every single day. So, I´ve changed how I plan. I know it´s hard, it takes a long time and you really have to put your mind to work to be able to plan out the next day well, the next week well, or even just to plan out your month. But, planning is an effective tool and will be useful in every aspect of my life, even though it is boring at times=). I know this is Christ´s church. I have felt it in my heart. I have received my answer from my Heavenly Father that this is His true Church. I encourage you to investigate, discover, and come closer to Christ, follow his perfect example. He will bless you in every aspect of your life as you do so. 

Elder Lohberg
Washington buddies - Elder Lohberg & Elder Henry
sitting at the internet cafe

Elder Lohberg with Elder Cantreras

Elder Lohberg with Elder Acuña

                                                               Elder Lohberg practicing his "r's"

Monday, April 6, 2015

Hello everyone!

General Conference was so good! I don´t have a lot to talk about this week, it was ¨Holy Week¨ here so almost everyone went to the beaches, so it was a pretty slow week. But, General Conference made it all better, just listening to the apostles and prophet talk in English was super satisfying. Everytime our investigators didn't come to a session was when all the talks that were perfect for them we presented. I was so disappointed haha, there were some SUPER good talks on marriage when our investigators who aren´t married weren´t there, I was like, we´re going to force them to read this talk after haha. There are times in the mission when out of love for people I really want to just take away their ageny, just make them do these things because I know in the end it will bless them. That´s probably the most frustrating thing in the mission, that people have their agency haha. But yeah, I loved almost every single talk, the talk that related dancing to learning and putting gospel doctrine in practice, and the talk by Elder Holland, about the brother who almost fell and his brother reached out and grabbed him. Really, I´ve grown to love general conference, listening to the prophets and apostles and putting all these principles in practice. I´m definitely going to study the talks in general conference when I get my hands on it! I encourage you to do the same, study them, feast on the words of the prophet and apostles and put them into practice! 

Elder Lohberg

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Nobody gave me ideas.

Welp, this week went well, we´ve been finding lots of new investigators and seeing a lot of progress in our area. One of the members in our ward, that was our ward mission leader just left today to go to the El Salvador mission, so we went to his setting apart last night to wish him off and to give him some last minute advice. I´ve been learning a lot lately, mostly on something that has been hard for me- to love everyone. I´ve always said to myself that I really did love everyone I met but then I realized I know almost nothing about them, nothing about their families, their backgrounds, nothing. So, Í´ve started to really try and learn about them, to be like Christ and be a friend. This week is Holy Week in Costa Rica, so there's no school and people are going to have work off, which means they all go to the beaches and stuff but we´ll see how many miracles we find! I don´t think God takes vacations, so he´s got people waiting for us out there!=D Also! This week is General Conference!!! Holy cow, invite ALL of your friends. If you really want your friends to hear about the restored gospel, to feel the truthfulness of it, I don´t think anyone could help them feel the Spirit better than the Prophet. So invite your friends! Be brave, if they say no they will still be your friends, I´ve noticed that in the mission, members have it so good, you have friends who know that you love them, all you have to do is share or invite, out of love, and they´ll accept, it may seem hard in the moment, make the decision now and then do it! =) General Conference is the best. 
Elder Lohberg!
Elder Contreras, Elder Acuña, Elder Lohberg, Elder Henry

Typing back and forth info:

mom: So - tell me about your week!!
Did your zone go to the temple today? Several of the mom's on the facebook group were freaking out cause none of us had gotten emails on Monday - and I had to work Monday but had moved appointments around a little cause Kara thought you'd told her you'd email around noon - so I moved a gal so I could be available but then no email - and then when dad finished working he monitored the email watching and still no email - it was later that evening that Sister Wilkinson said that several of the zones were going to the temple today so they switched their pday to do so - so we'd probably hear from our missionaries today - then she said "they were supposed to tell you that last week so you'd know" :)
Tell me your news! How are your investigators doing? How are things with your comp? How's the district coming along?  Did you feel the earthquake/volcano that just went off a couple days ago?

Aaron: Yeah we just came from there, I got my package as well. It´s because our zone leaders didn't tell us until Tuesday. ...The districts cool, we had 4 baptisms this last month, which isn´t very good, especially because 2 came from my area, but this next month we´ve got the goal of 10 and everyone's super pumped. No I heard about it but didn't feel it. Everyone told me that when it´s super hot that´s because there´s going to be an earthquake, I NEVER feel themÑ=(

mom: You got the box or the pringles cans? I'm guessing the box - was everything in there? I didn't list the protein powder and realized that after I'd sent it off - so wondered if it would make it.  I think the other 2 will never get there - oh well - now I know at least!!

Aaron:The box, 2 ties, shorts, protein powder, CHEX MIX, the note, andddd the 3 bars. oh yah hersheys! I took the blue one and he has the black one, I didn't want to give him it but oh wells haha. the chex mix is good it came in Monday when i was in the office, it was like perfect timing

mom: Dad and I are taking that member missionary class with brother Wilcoxson - had our first one last night - basically talked about how we needed to just invite and if we invite whether or not the person accepts - we are successful.  So - that's what we are going to try to do - invite, invite, invite.  Although we wont be home this weekend to invite anyone to conference with us - but I have been talking to people at the food bank! 
Sunday night I prayed that I would have people brought to me at the food bank that I could talk to about the church - and that I'd recognize them - well Monday (I'm working Monday's now too) I was talking to M about the church, and then G came up and I was talking to him and he said he had a cousin who joined the church - so we chatted some and then A (the meat guy we thought might be a member) well he came up to me and said he "used to be mormon" - went to seminary and everything - he went to school with Brother Duce.  We talked a lot about the church - and then this other gal - who was working in M's spot - D - she told me she was an inactive member as well - so we discussed things too!  Within 30 minutes or so I had several people approach me - so I felt it was an answer to my prayer the night before.  Now I just need to figure out how to talk with them more about the church and see what I can do to help them come back to church.

Aaron: Yeah, keep inviting, you have nothing to lose! haha it can be a little disappointing but we cant take away their agency, we just have to do our part and the rest is on them. Just do it with love and they´ll listen=D