Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Here Comes a Big One!

August 3, 2009


Get ready. It was a big week and I wrote an outline of things i´d like to discuss in this email. Here we go……

1. We had a great week. We got the standard again, and in doing so, me and my comp became the first in the mission to go back-to-back weeks hitting it. That's big time. I was told that there are about 30 missionaries who have gotten the standard, there are 4 of those who have gotten it twice, 1 (my comp) who has gotten it 3 times, and me who now has gotten it 6 times. We were pretty excited. It is not easy, and Sunday night we didn't even celebrate because we were too tired. We just gathered the numbers from the district and made our calls to report them and went to bed early! Maybe we'll celebrate it tonight—I just found popcorn this past week and have been making some popcorn. Yum!

2. On Friday, we had a pretty special day. We found 8 new investigators. We got into 3 different houses and taught some really great people. It was really neat to see how some of our plans fell through to let us search and clap new houses or have old contacts pop into our mind. Something I've learned is that when plans fall through, there is something good to do. Sometimes we find it, sometimes we don't. But Friday, finding 8 new investigators was huge. We are excited because we'd been feeling a little drained on new investigators to teach, and now we are set up to have a good week this week.

3. Tamara, our recent convert, is going through a bit of a trial of her faith. She has started living with the Marquez family because of all the garbage her sister was giving her about being a member. It's been a real blessing for both of the families—to have Tamara living with the Marquez and the Marquez having her basically as a sister. She had an interview with the stake president (as did Edgardo) yesterday during church. She has a lot of interest in serving a mission, and I know that she has a great support system here to do that.

4. We called and invited President Peterson to our baptism on Saturday. We called him Friday night to confirm that he was coming and he said yes and he said he'd be delighted to come at 2 and do a couple hours of work with us. At the same time, his wife went out with the sisters. That called for a quick, stressed planning for those hours! Before we were just going to find some new people, but we set up a cita with Raul and Maria, 2 of our real good investigators who are working on getting married, and the familia Marquez. The 2 citas turned out great. Raul and Maria both want to get baptized ASAP but are delayed by divorce papers. We should be able to fix all of that and get them baptized next transfer. With the Marquez, we talked about following faithfully and preparing to be a missionary. Tamara and pres. Talked for about 10 minutes after the cita. We're really excited for the 2 families.

5. The baptism was great. They were both so happy. We started on time, had great talks, and had a million people come. All of Edgardo´s family was there, and some of Mariano´s was there. All of Mariano's family has been sealed in the temple, but most have since divorced. Its really sad to see, but he was excited and so was his abuela, who is a very faithful member. It was a great baptism. I baptized Edgardo and Elder Taylor baptized Mariano.

6. On Friday night as we planned, I had an old contact come to mind. We planned to go to the barrio where that contact lives, and as we walked over I walked straight to that house to start. And what do you know? The lady we contacted was there. We passed in, and had a great chat with her. She was excited to learn about the church and unfortunately couldn't come to the baptism or sacrament meeting on Sunday. But we're excited to start teaching her. It was a neat experience for me to literally be led to that house. We're excited to keep teaching them and help them come unto Christ.

7. Almost done. But this one is a really funny story. We got robbed yesterday! Well, kind of. Someone tried to rob us! We were knocking a house and he came up behind us and I just thought he lived there, so I turned around and started contacting him. I ask him what his name is and if this is his house and he says no its not, pero te robo (but I'm robbing you). I just told him nah you're not robbing us and kept going with the contact, talking about Christ. He says give me your pants and jackets and shirt and shoes and belt. I say ´look you've already got your own. You don't need mine!´ he says no give them to me because I'm going to sell them to buy more drugs because I'm addicted. I tell him ´you're a child of God. You don't need to be a drug addict. He loves you! ´ he just told me again he was going to take our suits and shoes.  I say look I'll give you a pamphlet about the church, but I'm not giving you my stuff. Then we try to start walking down the street again and he puts himself in front of us a bit. He says ´give me your clothes. I'm robbing you.´ then comes my favorite part—I say ´you want us to get naked right here in the middle of the street?´ and he says ´yes´ then I give a really awkward look to him and then to my companion and mutter ´that's kind of weird…´ he looks at me and says ´well what are you going to do?´ I say ´we're going to keep working. We're sharing about God with people. Want to come with?´ and we start walking again and he gets in front of us again to stop us. He then says ´you want me to stab you? (I've been watching his hands and his pockets this whole time and had already seen that he doesn't have a knife or gun or anything. I say nah that's alright. We're going to leave now. I look at my comp and he says to me in English lets go to other sides of the street and run. So, that's what we did. We ran a half a block and he tried running 4 steps but kind of stumbled a bit. He'd had a couple drinks and didn't have a chance chasing us down. Fun experience, huh? It was a blast. Calm, cool, collected, and witty. Next time, I want to try and convince him that I'm the one robbing him haha. But no I'm really thankful he didn't have a knife or gun or anything. People get robbed and beat up here a lot. Like weekly we have people telling us about people who get knifed or shot. But this guy… he's got to bring his A game next time if he's getting anything out of us.

8. This is my favorite number. We have a lot of really good investigators. We have one named Luis. I think I've talked about him before. He is incredible. He just finished the Book of Mormon. He really really wants to get baptized, but his girlfriend isn't ready to get married yet. We've been working and praying hard with them, and she is there and listens from the other room every time we teach. But she just doesn't want to yet. This Thursday, we cooked tacos with them ( a real treat—they don't have tacos here!) and afterwards she asked us what she had to wear to come to church! Yes!!! Unfortunately, Luis's brother broke his leg real real bad working and had to stay in Roca, so they were there helping with that and couldn't come. But we're seeing progress. They went to the ward mission leader's house last Sunday to drink a mate and that was real real good. She is going to come around soon and they should be baptized next transfer.

9. I had smores on Friday night with the familia Millequeo (Edgardo´s family. It was SOOOOOOOOO good. Its been a darn long time since I've had smores. We had a nice little testimony meeting around their fire and it was a really good moment.

10. One more. In church, we had 66 people. Of that 66, 8 (yes! Hector came yesterday!)  were my converts, 5 were menos activos that I helped reactivate, and 5 were investigators we helped bring. That's 17. Then you take out the 4 missionaries and stake president that was there and its 17/61. That's a big chunk of the ward that I've had a direct part in bringing. That makes me feel okay
I love you all! Have a great week!

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