Thursday, June 25, 2009

Missionary update

June 24, 2009


Ready, set....Go!

This week was incredible. I have seen many incredible miracles pass, and I have started writing in my journal a lot because this is stuff I never want to forget. We'll start with last Tuesday (boy its been a while since I've emailed!)

We had an activity in the church with the familia Marquez (octavio, gonzalo, karen), Tomara, and Juan Carlos to watch the restoration together before the baptisms. The familia Marquez didn't come, but it was a good movie. I can almost quote the whole 20 minutes! But it was good. We swung by the Marquez's apartment afterwards to see why they didn't come and Octavio had had a seizure and he has a tumor in his brain that moved a little bit and he lost a lot of his memory. This had happened 6 years ago when he was 5 and it came back within 10 or 15 days, so we were hoping all would turn out well. We showed up and talked with his mom for a bit and she was having a tough time. She says he doesn't remember he has a bike, doesn't remember his teachers name at school, what grade he's in, he doesn't remember family friends that are here all the time... then he walked in and sits down at the table and looks at me and my companion in the eyes and then turns to his mom and says ´I know them... Elder Jensen and he's elder...Taylor!´ He then told us that he remembers everything we've taught him, all the things that happened in 1 ne 1-10 (what he's read so far) and how excited he is for his baptism on July 4th. It was pretty incredible. Of all the things he `happened´ to remember, all the stuff from the church that he had been taught in the past 2 months was still there! It was pretty miraculous. (he's still getting baptized on the 4th...we're really excited for him. He is such a great little guy and is so mature! (and he has started having seizures again... we're hoping he can settle back down so that his brain doesn't suffer damage again))

Next. 2 Sundays ago, we had to do 66 contacts to hit the 140 that we are supposed to do each week. There was a promise made that you would double your baptisms if you did 140 every week, and my trainer taught me that ´you're a meathead if you don't do 140,` so I do! Every week of my mission I've done at least 140, and no one believes me because there aren't too many missionaries that hit that, let alone literally every week of the mission. But we were doing a lot of contacting 2 Sundays ago, and we ran into someone named Luis. Last Friday we went and taught him, and it just clicked. I could see it in his eyes that this was exactly what he was looking for, that he knew it was true, and that he just loved it. He came to church on Sunday, and recognized our ward mission leader Octavio from a few years back. They chatted, and Luis has been looking for work for a while and justo in octavio´s department they needed an electrician, so today actually he is going over to pick up the job. What a great thing! I read him my favorite Scripture—Mosiah 2 41. And the thing is that he basically quoted the scripture to me before i read it. He says you know I'm on the right track here, and I know it. I challenged him to be baptized and he immediately accepted. His wife said she'd think about it, but that's okay. She used to go when she was 10 but never got baptized. I know they both are going to. But it built my testimony of doing 140 contacts—even though it stinks sometimes, there are grand blessings in store for doing what we should.

Next. We had the interview with Juan Carlos and he passed! Yay! He then says  `elders—I have a reference for you...lets go invite my friend to come to my baptism.´ We went and justo his old pastor was there waiting for this couple to go to an asado in the church. We were our normal happy selves and Juan Carlos says I came to invite you to my baptism on Saturday. The pastor then asks if he can talk to Juan Carlos for a bit in private. I talked to the couple, but kept my eye on those two talking. The pastor turned into a ´wolf dressed as a sheep´ and told Juan Carlos we were of the devil, that he still had to pay tithing, that he had come to rob the people away from his church. It was a pretty powerful, intense moment, but Juan Carlos calmly bore his testimony and told this guy that he knows the church is true, that there is a prophet and that he knows it. We were so proud of him.

We had 2 baptisms this weekend (well, 3...the hermanas had one too). It was so great. We had a great turnout and a lot of our investigators came. I had the privilege of baptizing Tamara and then on Sunday confirming Juan Carlos. Needless to say, it was a great weekend. They both were just so content. Tamara had a friend and her mom come in from Beltran, about 4 hours away, and they both really enjoyed it. The friend is now taking the discussions, and Tamara is now teaching with us (she's coming with us to the flia. Marquez in a couple hours). It is such a joy to see these people enter and grow in the church.

I am continually awed at the things that go on down here. Last week, we hit the standard of excellence. It was an incredible week. We literally ran between citas a few times... George Benson send me your bike! But I'm alright with that. I'd rather run across town like we did yesterday twice to teach people who are progressing than not run across town to teach people who are progressing. We ended up teaching more than 30 lessons—a new record for me. It is really a great time to be here in Allen---far better than when I first got here!

We had transfers last night. Me and Elder Taylor are sticking together another transfer. Hna. Pincock from here in Allen is heading out to Bariloche, and everyone else is staying put. We're really excited because 2 of the elders in our district are SO good together and they are staying a third transfer together. Look out Roca and Allen!

I've learned how to make a lot of good food now too... I've made ñokis, empanadas, home made bread, and all sorts of delights! Just you wait till i get back to the states to cook it for you! It's delicious!

I think that's about all I've got for now. I'm out of time! I love you all and am having a blast!

Taylor Alan Jensen

Which is funny because my comp is Taylor, I'm in Allen, and I'm Jensen. I get confused sometimes.

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