Thursday, June 19, 2014

Farewell to Presidente and Hermana Carter

President and Hermana Carter, leaving as Mission President after 3 years of faithful service in Argentina:

Hermana Carter wrote on their mission blog: Wednesday, June 18th

When we pulled in the church parking lot this morning and I caught the first glimpse of this sign, I just burst into tears and that is how the day started.

We had a great transfer meeting, which was fairly normal, right until the moment that my husband decided to surprise me with a huge spray of flowers. It was totally unexpected, but what made it even more special were the lovely words that he said. The missionaries know that I have worked for our entire mission to learn and improve my Spanish. It is not as easy as you might imagine to learn Spanish. Much of the work that we do at the offices is done in English and there are always people around to translate. I have felt incredibly blessed for the help from the missionaries and from our Heavenly Father most of all. We have a goal that every missionary leaves the mission with two languages. “Lucia” Carter took the Spanish test, and today the missionaries gave me a standing ovation! It was a first. I no sooner sat down than the assistants asked us to come back and they asked Brianna to join us and they thanked our family for our service here in Argentina and gave us an engraved silver tray and another spray of flowers. Each of the missionaries wrote us a personal message.The letters have all been combined and bound in a book. We will treasure it forever.

After that, we had a break for lunch. Oh, I forgot to mention that when the missionaries arrived this morning they each got to choose a number and I had brought all the leftover items from the pantry at our house and numbered them. It was a fun little thing and kind of amusing to see the missionaries walking around with random items like a spice jar of cinnamon or a can of green beans!

After lunch, we moved to the chapel and the pastores shared their testimonies. Three of the zones had prepared special musical numbers which were amazing! The third however, was God Be With You till We Meet Again. You can only imagine what it was like for me trying to speak after that. Presidente then spoke and then we showed our own Pastores video, which I will share on the blog another day.

We sang our mission hymn which is a song called “I’ll Find You My Friend.” The missionaries all stood and sung an additional verse about us and I am pretty sure that everyone was crying by then. One of the assistants left immediately after the closing prayer to get boxes of tissues.

Then the missionaries came one by one to say goodbye to us and give us a hug or shake our hand. It took about an hour and I have to say that it was one of the most spiritual experiences that I have ever had in my life. Even now, I still feel wrapped in the glow of their love which was demonstrated to us in such a beautiful way.

Words are truly inadequate to express our emotions and gratitude.

Below are some pictures from the morning. I hope to always have the mental images from this afternoon engraved upon my heart.

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