Sunday, 15 January 2012

PRETTY GOOD WEEK - 9TH JANUARY 2012

¡Hola familia!

Sounds like everyone´s been super busy!

Dad!  Sounds like hockey was a lot of fun. Too bad we lost against the Russians. We´re supposed to win!! That was funny about the thieves that were stealing from the tire yard. Hahaha chasing them down with your truck. I think you just need to paint the truck black, throw on a black suit with a cape and call yourself batman. Who needs the police when you can chase them down yourself? I like the goal of doing PPIs. I think that´s something really important. President Monson taught that progress accelerates when it´s reported. I like that you took Kenna on a one on one date too. I always loved it the times we did that. Do you have any other cool missionary experiences from your mission?

Mum! I like the idea of a family blog. I´m not sure if I can look at it, so could you just send me what you write every week in a separate email? Sounds like you´ve had and done a lot of visits this week! That´s awesome. As a missionary I´m starting to see how the small and simple things strengthen people immensely. I really like your idea of studying Preach My Gospel. It´s awesome!! It teaches us what to teach and how to teach it, as well as how to find people and how to serve others. It basically tells us everything we need to know about sharing the gospel. I´m happy that things are going well with you. That´s too bad that Jake was sick. I haven´t received any emails from him for the last 2 weeks.

Michael! Sounds like you had a fun week. Too bad you have exams soon! I´m sure you´ll destroy them anyway so don´t even worry about it. I hope that book is good. I´m jealous that it didn´t come out earlier. You´re gonna be an awesome missionary. When do you think you´re gonna hear back from BYU by the way? My zone leader applied for BYU too and he´s curious when he´ll get his response.

This week was pretty sweet. We had a baptism!! Jacqueline got back from her trip on Tuesday so we went by to see her and to give her her Christmas present. We didn´t say anything about baptism, but when we were about to leave she told us to plan the baptismal service as soon as possible. We were so excited!! A huge miracle and answer to our prayers. The next day we went with the Bishop´s wife who was recently called to serve in the Presidency of the Relief Society, and she helped us a ton. Jacqueline was even worse because her daughter and been really insensitive with her. The bishop´s wife helped us a ton by really reaching out to Jackeline and offering to help her. We found out too that she is going to be Jackeline´s visiting teacher. We were gonna do the baptism next week, but felt that we should do it earlier because if we didn´t do it maybe something would arise and Jackeline wouldn´t do it. We did it after the meetings on Sunday and a bunch of the members went to the service too. She bore her testimony and felt really welcomed by everyone. We were really happy for her, and she is really happy too.

We had three investigators at church this week. We had Edith and her sister Mily, and Jacqueline at church. Edith had a baptismal date for the 14, but I dunno what´s gonna happen with that. She feels insecure because she too suffers from a little bit of depression. We went by and taught her and her sister. Her sister had put doubts in her head and basically is trying to bring Jacqueline to her church instead. When she went to church and participated in the classes however, she became interested. We´re gonna see what happens with that. It was interesting too because about 5 minutes before the Gospel Principles class, we found out that the sister who normally teaches wasn´t there, and that we had to teach. Elder Navarrete was a genius and divided the class into groups to study the manual and present what they learned. It ended up working out pretty well.

The Bishop is doing some changes in the ward which is good. He told us he wants to change everything. It seems so far to be working because the Relief Society is taking off, and a new counselor in the Bishopric asked us in Priesthood in the meeting what the priesthood in the ward could do for us. We were taken a little off guard but we´re really excited and are gonna bring specific names and assignments next week. We´re also excited because they´re working on reactivation a lot now, and on getting us good referrals.

This week none of our recent converts were at church. Natalia was out of town, Ximena had instruction from the doctor to stay home and rest because she has an operation in a couple days, and we have no idea what happened with Camila. We were gonna meet with her this week but she couldn´t because she was busy signing up for university classes. She hasn´t answered her phone at all for and I´m a little worried. Normally we meet with her in another member´s house but I wanna pass by to make sure everything´s ok. We´ve also received some bad news that maybe Natalia had a relapse with the word of wisdom. Preach My Gospel teaches us not to be discouraged if that happens, but we´re gonna do everything we can to help her. It´s a lot to expect a huge complete change in a person in such a small amount of time. We´re excited though because we´re getting more and more help from the members.

We set goals this week to improve with our time usage and to focus more in our studies. We didn´t find anyone good this week, and almost all the people who committed to go to church didn´t show up and didn´t answer their phones. It was frustrating on Saturday when everything just fell apart with the appointments we had and everything. We decided that in order to have more success with the things outside of our control, we need to show the Lord that we´re going to be better with the things inside our control.

We´re still working with Edith, Susana, Cony, and Antonia as possibilities this month. We might drop Silvia because she hasn´t done anything and didn´t go to church after swearing by God to go. It can be very testing to your patience when people completely bail on their commitments and the appointments that we have. I think the important thing is to always show the love of the Lord, but we have to use our time effectively, and not with people who don´t wanna change their lives.

It´s starting to hit me that Elder Navarrete is almost for sure going in 2 weeks. It´s gonna be terrible! I´ve learned so much from him in this short time, and the experiences I´ve had here have changed my outlook on life completely. I feel more patient, and I feel like I´m more able to see things how they are in terms of the gospel. I´m more able to see sin and see righteousness.

I love being a missionary. Although at times it can be difficult when we´re knocking doors in the sun or when all our plans fall apart, I know that this is the Lord´s work. I have a million things to improve, and I love improving everyday. I´ve been so blessed with the language, my teaching abilities, and with the miracles I´ve seen. Although I have to improve immensely as a missionary, I´m happy to see the progress I have made.

I know this is the Lord´s work. This is His church, and His gospel. Joseph Smith was a prophet. He saw the Father and the Son, and He translated the Book of Mormon by the power of God. This is the Lord´s kingdom, and His work will go forth.

Thank you so much for all your letters and for your prayers. I´m so happy to see the progress in each one of you, and I know that the Lord will bless you and me as we seek to follow Him more closely.

¡Chao!