Monday, August 26, 2013

Aug 26

Dear Family,
Oh how much I love hearing from you. Every time I get on the computer and start reading your messages the spirit is so strong. I know the Lord is reminding me how important my family is to me even though I am not with you right now. It is crazy how much my love has grown for my family on my mission. I never knew I could be so happy.  
Also the other day with Elder Barakat we were talking about individual happiness. And we were talking about how are happiness in this life can keep growing and growing as we keep more and more commandments. I know the closer we are to Christ and the more responsibility we have in this life only the more happiness we can have. 
I know in this life that the lord has a plan for each one of us to be happier and happier each day. And to continue learning more and more. One of my favorite scriptures is moroni 10:32 ¨yea, come unto Christ, and be perfected in him, and deny yourselves of all ungodliness, and love God with all your might, mind, and strength, then is his grace sufficient for you, that by his grace ye may be perfect in Christ; and if by the grace of God ye are perfect in Christ, ye can in nowise deny the power of God. ¨
I know that God loves us and with him we will be so much more happy.

I love your letters, Mom I am so glad that you are feeling happy in the ward, how is Bishop Beck doing? Also how are the Walkers and the Hunsaker's, oh I love those families? And also I need the email of Maddie Riggs to be able to write her. Will you send it to me in your next e-mail? Mom, I hope you know I love you so much, also Makenna I love you so much

Dad and Brennan, I wish I could have joined you in your outdoor adventures, oh how I love camping even more now that I sleep in a sleeping bag every night. Ha I am so glad that all of you went to a place to camp. And I cant believe you bathed in that water... you know how I don’t like the cold. Ha but, don’t worry here it is super cold every night and I don’t get cranky. 

I love you all so much, keep denying all ungodliness and one day, I know with out a doubt, we will be in the presence of god as an eternal family. I pray you can picture it as I do. 
With all my Love,
Elder Hicks

Also Mom I haven’t taken any pictures this week, forgive me, I will do better this next week.
Elder Hicks

Monday, August 19, 2013

August 19

Tough and Great Week! 
I’m with my new companion Elder Barakat. HE is such a great guy.
Wow every day is so great and every day keeps getting better. 
This week we need prayers for some of the converts that I have been able to see converted. All of them did not go to church this week. And it would be great if you could pray for Elsa, Elba, Carolina, Niels, Branco, and Oriana. It is so hard to see that they are not going to church. And there is only one thing that can help them, and that is god. Thank you so much. 
Also Elder Barakat is such a great missionary. We are trying our best.
Mom, Dad, Brennan, Makenna, I love you so much and I am so glad that little by little we are coming closer to god and Christ. 
My companion and I this morning were talking a little bit about conversion and a testimony. Sometimes for me it is so frustrating, as I try so hard and I keep failing to follow the spirit or to follow all of the rules of the mission and I keep failing. I want so bad to be converted because I know it the only place I can really be happy.
We brought up Alma the younger and his conversion process, my companion said ¨Alma was not converted after he saw an Angel, but it says after many days of fasting and prayer was when he was converted. I know that after I have tried my best with prayer and fasting is when I will truly be converted and sometimes we have to wait because everything is line upon line and precept upon precept.
I love you all so much and I am so glad we are all working so hard to be converted to Christ, and it is not an easy process but I know it is worth it
Elder Hicks
P.S. Mom the weather is fine and my allergies are great. Even though we pass a horse about every day, I am fine. Thanks for checking on me.
All my love to you all!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Transfer Day/Elder Barakat

This week we did not have a baptism. But i have a new companion. His name is Elder Barakat, and he is from El Salvador. He is such a great missionary. Really, he is so nice. He speaks a lot of English, he helps me with my words and hopefully I can help him learn even more english. Also we confirmed Branco and Niels this week. It was such a great confirmation. Their Uncle came to the confirmation and he felt the spirit so strong in the church. We asked him how he felt after church and he said ¨ I feel at peace it was such a tesimony builder for me.
Oh I would love for you all to send me photos of you! I love photos and the people here love photos of families also. I want you to know that I am proud of you Dad that you that you are working out. With the help of the Lord I know you can stop eating as much if you want to. When I first arrived in Argentina I ate so much food, and I would always look forward to eating lunch or dinner. But with prayer and fasting, The Lord has helped me realize that food is not that important and if we follow the word of wisdom and set a plan for what we are going ot eat, we can feel the sprit in our lifes even more. What a blessing it is to have the opportunity to have a grocery store right next ot our house to buy all the things we need. But also with many blessings comes much responsibilty in our own chiçoices. I know with prayer dad you can lose weight and continue looking and feeling better about yourself with the help of the spirit, listen to him and you will overcome.

Something that my teacher from the MTC sent me:
Élderes y Hermanas,

Yesterday we had a great class with one of the districts that I am with about the Atonement.  It is amazing how many purposes the Atonement fulfills.  It redeems us from the fall, cleans us of our sins, complements justice in helping us find help and peace when the decisions of others directly effect us, empowers us when we do not have the capacity to accomplish something, and transforms us- literally changes our nature.

I love the story President Monson shared in conference:

"During the 1940s and 1950s an American prison warden, Clinton Duffy, was well known for his efforts to rehabilitate the men in his prison.  Said one critic, 'You should know that leopards don't change their spots!'  Replied Warden Duffy, "You should know I don't work with leopards.  I work with men, and men change every day."

One of my favorite blessings of the Atonement is its ability to transform us.  In John chapter 2 we read about Christ's first miracle- when he changes the water to wine.  This small miracle, not understood by everyone present, shows that Jesus has the ability to change things. "This beginning of miracles did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested his glory." (vs. 11)

Marvin J Ashton (of the 12) said:

C. S. Lewis indicated there is often pain in change when he wrote of God’s expectations for His children: “Imagine yourself as a living house. God comes in to rebuild that house. At first, perhaps, you can understand what He is doing. He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised. But presently he starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make sense. What on earth is He up to? The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of—throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards. You thought you were going to be made into a decent little cottage: but He is building a palace” (C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity, New York: MacMillan Co., 1960, p. 160).
Yes, there is pain in change, but there is also great satisfaction in recognizing that progress is being achieved. Life is a series of hills and valleys and often the best growth comes in the valleys. Change is a meaningful part of repentance. Some are unable to repent because they are unwilling to change
I hope you like the message behind this, sometimes  we don´t realize we can be so much better and Jesus has to help us realize this little by little. I have learned so much with Elder Barragan and i am ready to learn so much from Elder Barakat. 
This week was such a great week, My love for all the members in the ward have grown so much. 
I am still in Pilar and I love you so much, 
Elder Hicks

Monday, August 12, 2013


We wont receive an email from Troy today because of transfers,  but we received these picture from an RM that served in the same mission and is visiting Argentina.  He saw Troy and Elder Barragan on the street and spoke with them. He said Troy is doing great


Monday, August 5, 2013

August 5

Dear Family,
Mom, I received my garments about 2 weeks ago, sorry for not telling you. And also preparation day for next week is on Monday so I will write you on Tuesday next week.
I can’t believe this week is the week we were sealed, I will especially remember all of the blessings that we have received on that day.
This week was defiantly the best week of the mission, and probably the 2nd hardest. To explain, last week after we wrote president, we were putting our goals in for the week and for one of our baptismal goal we only put 1. After we put the goals I started thinking about our baptismal goal and I just did not feel right about it. So I told elder barragan and we said a pray about our baptismal goal and we both received revelation that it should be 2. After this I was kind of confused and I was thinking about our options to baptize people. And we only had 1 person that we could baptize this week, and his baptism isn’t even a for sure baptism. 
After this during the week we started looking for people that we could baptize. So we started going to as many old investigators as we could to find some body that had had attended the church 3 times to baptize. In the end it was no luck by Thursday our baptism had fell through with Ariel and also we could not find anyone else to baptize... At this point I was thinking why would the lord give us revelation to baptize 2 people if no one could be baptized. 
So after this thought Elder Barragan and me said a prayer during weekly planning, and we asked who could we baptize. How can we baptize 2 people? And right after the prayer. We thought of Branco and Niels, the two kids that we are teaching. We thought that they will have 3 times at church by the end of this week. And we could set a baptism by Sunday night. 

After this we called the bishop and we set up the baptism, and we had two baptisms this weekend with Niels and Branco. I was able to baptize Branco and elder Barragan was able to Baptize Niels. It was literally the coolest experience in my life. 

Our zone leader called us this week once he figured out that we had 2 baptisms and said ¨elders I want you to understand something, once the lord sets a goal with you and you try your hardest, that goal will happen and you will be able to accomplish it. ¨ He was so proud of us. And I hope god was too.
I know that each week we set a goal we will be able to accomplish it, if we try our best and always call upon god for help.
This week our baptismal goal is 1, and we have one investigator, who is the brother day Branco and Niels that can be baptized on Saturday. We are going to try our best to make it happen. But for sure this week we are going to 1 baptism if we both try our best.

I love you all and I know that this church is true. We also went to Buenos Aires again today, if you know the Obilisk in the middle of Buenos Aires we went there and I have pictures. I can’t send them to you through this computer; I will send the card home. 
Dad and Mom I am so proud of your missionary work, and I love you all so much, Next week is transfers and I don’t think I will be with Elder Barragan anymore, we will see what happens, I know whatever the Lord asks me to do is possible with him. I love you all so much

I love you so much
Elder Hicks
Our baptism, from left to right, Selene, Nancy, Bruno, Niels, Me, Branco, And Elder Barrangan.