Monday, December 12, 2016

Has it been 18 months?

Has 18 months really gone by? 
I still perfectly remember my first day, going to bed in the MTC, looking up at the bunkbed above me  in the quietness of the night, and thinking I have 18 months of this.
What seems so daunting and eternal has gone by in the blink of an eye;

Before the misison I had the opportunity to study in Spain. I remember the week after I opened my call we went to Barcelona as a group. We went to a famous look at point to see the view. The study abroad director, Brad Wilcox, pulled me to the side to look over at the view below us. You could see everything, buildings and the ocean and the sagrada familia in the distance. And as I tried taking everything in Brad asked me' "can you imagine yourself here Hermana Cragun? Can you imagine all the people you're going to meet and the experiences you're going to have?" Of course I always thought about my mission, what it was going to be like, the miracles is as going to see... And now 18 months later, I can look back and say, the mission was nothing how I thought it was going to be like. But it was perfect for me.

The mission has overall been the best decision of my whole life, without a doubt. The people I have met, who I have grown to love. The experiences and refinements the Lord has placed in my path to shape me, and help me grow. It has been a privilege serving here in Spain Barcelona 

It's impossible to list everything the Lord has taken the time to carefully teach me, but know I have personally come to know and love the savior even more. I've come to understand how perfect his gospel is, and how the Book of Mormon has the power to change and better our lives. Change is a miracle, and if we let Christ, he will shape us into the people he knows we can become, using our weaknesses to make them strengths. I am grateful for my Heavenly Father and  my Savior Jesus Christ, they have an infinite snd perfect love for everyone, and they've given me the greatest privilege to serve the people of Spain. I love Spain. 
I love Spain. 
My heart is aching thinking leaving these people, and not being able to be called Hermana Cragun anymore, or get to have investigators anymore, but I will forever carry these experiences with me, they have made me who I am, and Spain and my mission will forever be a part of the person I have become. 

Con mucho amor 
Hermana Cragun 

Monday, November 28, 2016

What a week

What a special week it's been, I feel like it's fitting that this week was Thanksgiving because this truly was such a special week to stop, and remember all the blessings I have in my life right now to be a missionary preaching the gospel here in Girona.
 The Lord really blessed us this week, six of our friends came to church! It was a miracle!
Our investigators continue to progress so well, Miguel has a goal for the 25 as well as our friend William for the 17th, but I would say our greatest miracle this week was our friend Leonardo. As we met for the first lesson we asked him why he wanted to meet with us and he stopped and for chocked up as he explained he was looking for a change in his life and he felt like that change needed to come through Jesus Christ,
As we ended the lesson we invited him to take that step in his life to change by being baptized and he agreed, he had a fecha for the 17th. As we closed with a prayer he cried thanking Heavenly Father for his blessings and for the help he would need to change.
I am so grateful for these small unforgettable moments and the spirit that comes with them, 
I am so blessed to be a missionary in the Spain Barcelona mission.
I am grateful for a Heavenly Father that inspired me to study here 2 years ago, and then in turn inspired his prophets to send me back to the country he knew I loved.
I am grateful for a mission president smd his wife who love me, and have taught me so much.

I love you all
Hermana Cragun 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016



The lord calls the unlikely to do the impossible"
-Russel M Nelson (spoken literally five feet from me)

This week we had the opportunity to hear from an apostle of the lord; Russell M Nelson,  his wife Wendy and Jennifer and Patrick Kearon, they came to speak to our mission. It was by far the most spiritual and impacting moment of my whole life. As we gathered as the entire mission waiting for the President Nelson to enter the room we quietly sang "we thank thee o God for a prophet" and the spirit was so strong, you could not deny that the lord testified to each one of us that we were going to be learning from one of his chosen servants that day.

I could probably write a novel about the things I learned that day, but what was most impacting for  me was President Nelsons, was he was of being (I'm so sorry if that doesn't translate right it sounds better in Spanish) anyways, his presence and how you could just look at him and see something different about him. He and his wife talked about how the lord is coming back, and he's coming back soon. And the importance of leaving it all on the mission and coming back changed and staying changed. We also had the opportunity to hear from the Kearons and that in itself was so amazing.

Well President Nelson did leave us with a challenge-to try a new door approach. Every time someone answered the door we needed to ask them "would you like to know more about you family?" "Do you know your grandparents, your great grandparents? Well let us help you!"
So we tried it out  and saw soooo many miracles Haha and so many funny responses as well. One of those miracles  was meeting Adrian and his girlfriend Denia. As we knocked a building this young Spanish couple answered, covered in tattoos and piercings clearly had just been smoking and so well we presented ourselves and asked if they wanted to know more about their family, and you know what?! THEY SAID YES I just want to make it clear that that NEVER happens haha. We ended up teaching the plan of salvation and it was so incredible, were coming back Wednesday to teach them more. 

The work is growing here in beautiful Girona, we have three investigators preparing for baptism right now- Daniel from Honduras, Merlin from Honduras and Elvira from Peru; we love working here and I absolutely LOVE the members here, I feel more at home than ever. 

I love this work, I love being a missionary and I love Spain! I'm grateful as President Nelson stated that the lord "calls the unlikely to do the impossible." I at times feel like the most unlikely person to be called to the lords work, as I think of all my flaws and how much more I have to learn and do, but with the lord I truly can do the impossible 

Love you all!! Xoxox Hermana Cragun 

Thursday, September 29, 2016

perfect week

cant beat that view of the city

life is good, mission is perfect

Mom's favorite, family from Venezuela with typical plate of Pabellon


What a crazy week! Between two intercambios and teaching at zone conference, visiting our favorite Venezuelan family and it raining like CRAZY and getting soaked
we had an amazing miracle...MARI HAS AGREED TO BE BAPTIZED!
the experience was so amazing,
Saturday we met with Mari to talk about her doubts about baptism, and in the beginning she was saying that she just felt like she was just not ready And needed to keep learning, and we explained to her that she WAS ready. Mari has changed her whole life around for the church, she stopped drinking, going to parties, she stopped going to the gym on Sunday to keep the Sabbath day holy, she even is moving out of her piso to find a better atmosphere where she can study and keep the faith with less temptation. SHES AMAZING. Anyways we explained baptism and how it's really just the gate to the path and not the ending destination and she was still hesitant,
WELL then an idea came to my elder from my past area shared this experience and brought back to me...
And we suggested that we could pray. Each of us. Mari, Hermana Spiegel and I, and our two members that were helping us, to ask god if Mari was ready. 
So we each knelt down and prayed and the spirit flooded the room, we couldn't resist but crying and by the time it was Mari turn to pray she said she knew she needed to but she was afraid, she thanked God for each of us in her prayer and when she finished she stood up and said she knew she needed to be baptized 

My testimony grew so much that day that God DOES hear and answers prayers. He is so perfectly aware of each of his children and wants them so badly to have the gospel and the answers to our prayers. Sometimes he tests us and makes us wait for these answers, but the only thing he asks of us is that we have faith and KNOCK at the door, because he will always answer. His way is ALWAYS the right way, even if we don't understand it and even if we're afraid to follow it, he will do what's best for us.
Love you!!!
Hermana Cragun 

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

September update

Herman Spiegel and Hermana Cragun
                                                   Once a cat women always a cat women

What a spiritual week! I feel as though I've sat at the feet of the Savior and heard and learned so much through his servants this week. It was absolutely incredible to be able to spend 2 days with the Zwicks, the area seventy. I learned sooo much from them! Some of my favorite parts were how they said to always keep striving, and their touching stories about their son Scottie with disabilities who even despite set backs has helped convert people because of his love of the gospel! I learned so much from them and was able to receive so much revelation for myself and area! The best part? Elder Zwick said he was going to call on a random companionship for the practica in front of the mission, and who did he call? Yours truly. Hermana Spiegel and Cragun hahaha, but it went well so it was okay in the end. 

One of the highlights of this weeks was when Hermana Spiegel and I were able to  visit a family from Venezuela, they are living together but the husband wants to get married. Since they done have papers we had to do the hard thing and teach them the law of chastity and invite them to pray about it, and move out.  The spirit was sooo strong and at the end, they accepted!
We are so happy for them and know the lord will bless them so much! He's doing so much to build his kingdom here in Gerona! Our other investigators are doing so well too! We are constantly finding and teaching and seeing so many miracles! Mari has accepted that she needs to be baptized so hopefully in the next couple weeks she will be ready!!:) 
Love you all!! 

Hermana Cragun 

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Small update and picts from maddie

                                                 Not much but quick updates these days.
                                                       She is happy and doing well.
           This is a friend from High school Emilie, who was on student council with her and is now serving in Barcelona.  They were able to see each other briefly making transfers when Emilie arrived.
                                  As of today this is Maddie's new area Girona Spain
                                 She is super excited and has a new comp ( no picts of her yet)
                             Good bye to one of her favorite areas and a Bishop and his wife who became like family to her.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

The Lord always answers prayers

First before we get to any other details or talk about a hunk the else that is happening let me say, I'm staying in Vilafranca, a miracle if I do say so myself.

Secondly. My mind is so muddled at what to write right now haha 
I've been HORRIBLE at writing so I'm sorry, but to update you my birthday here in vilafranca was without a doubt the best birthday I've ever had. I've always celebrated my birthday with close friends and family, and this year I did the same. It really was so humbling to see people take me in like their daughter and spoil me. People that I haven't known for more than a couple months. They all hold a special place in my heart, and four cakes later on the scale as well...
But truly it's such a humbling experience to see people just love you so much. 

Third- LESLIE WAS BAPTIZED. There's a 110 things I want to write about it, but basically to sum it all up one night in vilafranca we met her contacting and I wrote "miracle girl" next to her name in my agenda to try and help me remember who she was, and that's exactly who she's turned out to be, our miracle girl. As she got up to bear her testimony she said : 

As I went in for my interview for the elder asked me if I had prayed if I had received my answer, and the truth is I did. I did those things. But the way I had received my answer was through the people I met here. The peace and love I was looking for from my Heavenly Father I received and felt through the members of the church, through all the members and missionaries I met, and that's I came to the church was true, 

I loved hearing her testimony  and it was such a good reminder that the lord ALWAYS answers our prayers. Since day one Leslie has said want she wanted "to feel the love of Heavenly Father" but it is usually through others he answers our prayers. 

My companion just left for her second area, I'm sitting in a laundry mat with my friend hermana Mayes who ends her mission today. She was the missionary I spent my first night with here. Time is not real here. 
Last Saturday I received a call from President asking me for a new calling- training and sister training leader. I'm excited for this new opportunity to train again and get to work with the hermanas :) 
Love you all 
Xoxo Hermana Cragun  

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

what a WEEK!


Friend that is moving


What a WEEK! 
This week was full of a little bit of everything. Moments of fear, tears, and pure joy as we watched our favorite little Bea be BAPTIZED!! 
 Tuesday we were off to go go district meeting when the phone rang from an unknown number so I picked it up thinking it was an investigator when I heard "hermana cragun, do you know who this is?" I immediately recognized the voice as an old investigator from my FIRST area. And my stomach basically dropped. He began asking me where I was, where my trainer was. He was trying to get information about her. When I told him I couldn't give out info like that he said "well it's just that I've been wanting to learn more about the gospel again" and I said "contact the missionaries in sabadell  then, they can help you" and he said "well hermana cragun, it's just that I'm not in sabadell anymore, I've moved because of work, and I've just so happened to find myself in vilafranca now. And I've heard you are here now, correct?"
I couldn't believe it. I had no idea who told him where I was or who had given him the number to our phone. I basically told him never to call back again and that we could never meet. (But that if he was really interested in the gospel that he should call the sabadell missionaries) 
 I phoned my STL who had me talk to president, so basically our whole district is in guard in case anything happenes, but I don't think anything will so know worries. How he figured out our number or where I was now? Still unknown. 

There were some tears this week though as one of our favorite families in The ward moved to Mallorca :( they've lost everything so they had no choice but to go. Being on my mission has made me realize how lucky I am. I've watched people and met people who have passed through horrific things, and yet keep going. One of my favorite lines is from a girl my age who said "there are people who will complain all day to you about your lives, but I don't like to do that. All that does it make you sad, and life isn't about being sad. Life is about laughing" 
This comes from a girl whose been abused, whose lost her sight, and who has lost her home, and is on her way to live with her cousin. It's just made me realize how lucky I am to have the life that I  have. What I use to think was a "big deal" before the mission has become nothing but petty worries now. 

But the best part of the week was when BEA WAS BAPTIZED!!! it was so amazing to see her take his step! She's come so far spiritually, she's even sharing the gospel with her friends. Her service was small and beautiful. She didn't want a lot of people there, just close friends and family. But it was so great and went so well. This is one of my favorite things about the gospel. That it comes from an all knowing God we can't even comprehend, and yet it's so simple even a child can grasp it. And Bea has truly grasped it.

Well time is flying here. It's hard to believe I'll be 20 this week, or that I've been almost out for a year now on the mission. Everyday I strive to make the most of my time here. Que sepan que me encanta ser misionara. I Love being a missionary. This has been the hardest but most joyful fulfilling time of my life. 
Hna Cragun 

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

Semana de San Jordi

HOLLLAAA Regional indicator for SpainHeavy black heart
This week was the week of San Jordi, which is basically the Catalonian version of Valentine's Day. Here the girls give out books and the boys give out flowers and so naturally we missionaries took advantage of it and gave out Books of Mormon! And San Jordi was a success! Giving out books and working with members to stop everyone on the streets. I was surprised how many youth came up and asked me about our religion and god in general. They kept asking me how I "knew" these things and it was a cool experience to be able to testify of Book of Mormon in my hand to peers my age about the gospel. The experience also made me realize how lucky I am to have grown up in the church and how religion has impacted basically almost every aspect of my life. I can't imagine what my life would be like without it.
Our investigators are doing amazing. The Lord is truly blessing us and helping us, there's no other explanation. 
Noeli is doing amazing :) she is reading and praying everyday. She's the absolute sweetest and she's going to be baptized the 14 of May. She has the two cutest kids ever and  she invited us over Tuesday to try some dishes from Peru! 
Bea as well. Our 10 year old investigator ( her parents have been less active) never fails to surprise us with stick figure drawings AND colored paper haha I love it. She's going to be baptized the 7 of may. She's energetic and wild but she has a big heart and we love her.
We also have Leslie ! Our 18 year old investigator from Peru who is the funniest cutest girl ever! She's so smart and what I love about her is when she reads the Book of Mormon she gets it! She loves Nephi and his decision to pray which helped him not rebel like his brothers. She's not even baptized yet and she's sharing the gospel with her friends!

I've come to the point where home seems like a dream to me. I speak Spanish trying to speak English and my dreams all take place in the streets of Vilafranca. I love the work so much and Spain. I say that ever email, haha but it's true!!

Let me finish with a scripture I found this week

 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the fields; for they are white already to harvest.

Miracles are happening here in Vilafranca 
Xoxoxo Hermana Cragun 

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Many Miracles

I'm sorry that I have been basically the worst at writing lately. I feel like there's so much to say and to do and somewhere to be, that I haven't had the time to actually write how things are going.

I'm loving the mission right now, we are teaching so much. I feel like, always have somewhere to be. We're helping Nellie, a single mother from Peru, Becca, a 10 year old whose parents are trying to reactivate prepare to be baptized right now. They're sooo amazing and progressing really well. Beccas family especially is so fun to visit and to be honest they are the most  humble people I have met. They give us food every time and watch us eat because they don't have anything else to give. Last time we ate sliced up apples. Becca drew us a a picture and labeled it "to the best missionaries in the world"  I love it. 

We've also seen many miracles in this week alone! 
My first week here in Vilafranca I got SUPER lost and we stopped a man for directions to help us find the Capilla. He ended up walking us there and we talked for a minute before he had to go. WELL. Just last week we got a reference for a man from Bulgaria, who had walked into the church to see it, and it was him!! The same man we met! He told us that he has walked past the church everyday since that day we first met. He's super receptive to the message and wants to meet whenever we can.
We're also teaching a man named Javier, who a couple years ago was in an accident that left half is body paralyzed. He can't speak much above a whisper so at times it's hard to understand him. He's hard catholic, but he's willing to learn. He couldn't come to church this week but we're meeting with him again Wednesday. 

And just lastly we've helped a cute girl named Valeria work on become active again. She's AWESOME! We love her and her family. They always invite us over for dinner or noche de hogars ( family home evening). She came to church for the first time in months AND brought a friend who loved it and wants to come back, and that we're going to start teaching Wednesday.

My companion has been having serious leg problems, and they aren't getting better. Im kinda worried for her to be keep her in your prayers 

WELL I LOVE YOU ALL!!! The lord is blessing us so much here in vilafranca. I LOVE IT :) this is seriously the hardest but best time of my life. I can't think of a time when I've been closer to the spirit or felt more joy from serving. I feel soooo lucky and blessed 

Love you all Two hearts hna cragun 

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Refiners Fire

WEEK 2: Vilafranca 
The halfway mark 

Wow. To even think that it's been nine months seems pretty insane to me. Unreal really, time really is such a foreign thing here on the mission, it just goes by sooooo fast. 
But looking back, at the cities I've served in, the people I've met. I see where time has gone. It's interesting watching my trainee, because I remember and can relate exactly to how she feels at times, but it's weird to realize that's not me anymore. To realize how far I've come, and then to know that I have to make the most of the times ahead. Make every moment count. 

Well Vilafranca has become my refiners fire haha, it's so hard at times and yet so amazing. It's been a week of  MIRACLES!! We've been able to work with a menos Activo family, the mom is from Spain and the dad is from Ecuador, and their daughter isn't baptized. The elders were meeting with them before we arrived and things were going well, but they couldn't get them to come to church. Well this Sunday we arrived and were greeting ward members and my companion goes "LOOK!" And in walked the little girl with her mom!!! I couldn't believe it! It was the greatest miracle of all! She has a date to be baptized the 9th of April. So keep her in your prayers!
We also were able to visit Noel, a young mom from Peru. The sister missionaries were visiting her until they were pulled out, she hasn't  had contact with missionaries for months. We found her name in our area book and decided to call her and she picked up and invited us over. The lesson was amazing and she was agreed to be baptized right there! Her date is for the 16 of April

The ward here is all incredible, I've never seen a bishopric so on top of things. They are soooo kind to the missionaries and love missionary work it's amazing. My trainee is doing so well! She's learning so fast and is so cute and so positive. She helps a ton. 

I love it here in Vilafranca, it's smaller than I'm use to, but I feel like the Lord is preparing SO many people for us here. It's truly such an adventure and blessing to be here. I'm grateful for the miracles I'm seeing, for the lessons I'm learning. I love missionary work, and I love my Savior. 
LOVE YOU ALL Two heartsRibbon 
Xoxo Hermana cragun 

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Chapter one in Vilafranca

Hermana Allen from England- Greenie

Vilfranca-New area
Fantastic market!

About an hour from the city of Barcelona you will find a quiet city near the coast called Vilafranca. It's quiet, with a population of 35,000 and most of the citizens here are Spanish. The work is good, with a promising new frontier. I have found I am more of a city missionary, I like the constant hustle and bustle and places to be. And while Vilafranca is no where near the size of Valencia, something about it reminds me of my first town Sabadell, so it had a comforting, homey feeling to it, and with no one having been down here, my trainee and I do have our hands full. 

MY TRAINEE! My trainee is the absolute cutest. Monday night we went out to work with the new missionaries before they were assigned trainers. Hermana Wiseman (my old companion) is also training and so the two of us went down to Barcelona together. But because Barcelona is where Hermana Wiseman use to work, they gave her permission to have the night visiting members and recent converts. Well one of the houses we went to, the current missionaries from Barcelona passed by with their new missionary- Hermana Allen.  I got the chance to talk to the adorable quiet British Hermana Allen. And who would have guessed it but, 14 hours later we were made COMPANIONS. 

Hermana Allen has been the sweetest, and opening an area has been the CRAZIEST! But it's awesome. We've been able to try and go meet as many members and people as possible these days. We've come home dead tired every night and we wake up to do the same the next morning. But beside all that I have never heard a peep of complaint come out of her mouth. She's quiet, and shy, but when you get to know her she's really just so intelligent and sassy. Haha she's the perfect companion for me and I love her so much.

Vilafranca is amazing. It's beautiful there are so many amazing ward members and the bishop is INCREDIBLE!!!! He loves missionary work and he truly cares about everyone. Our first day here we were out on the streets when a police officer pulled us over and asked for our DNI ( ID papers). Ridiculed us for  being missionaries and then said our DNI looked fake. And well right when I was about to panic he took of his helmet and introduced himself as Bishop Borrut,  hahaha he's hilarious and has been such a huge help. We spent the week meeting members, viewing the area and on the streets trying to create as big of a new investigator pool as possible.

Truly it's been SO amazing, I feel like Vilafranca is a blank page, a white sheet. It's possibilities are endless, literally this city is what Hermana Allen and I shall choose to make of if. This morning as we read our scriptures, I read DC 10:44 : And by your hands I will work a marvelous work among the children of men, unto the convincing of many of their sins, that they may come unto repentance, and that they may come unto the kingdom of my Father.

45 Wherefore, the blessings which I give unto you are above all things.

What a blessing it is to be a missionary and to be able to be his hands for his work. Till next week. Pray for us to see miracles here in Vilafranca 
Xoxox Hermana cragun Ribbon