It has been the first week in a long time that I looked at my watch and counted how many more hours we had to work for the day. We have a little motivational card that says something like “slow and boring days or months in the mission are for slow and boring missionaries” So we are going to have to change up the routine and do something new.
It was raining for 3 days straight this last week. Everything got wet and it was really cold (70 ish degrees!!!) I was almost dying freezing. We did get to have a service project helping people throw buckets of water out of their front yard because the street overflowed. It made me think about mom ́s mom when her house got flooded and helping out there years ago. Every single street out here was a river, and we had to buy big old rain boots like in the movies. Mine reach almost up until my knees, and there were still places that I couldn’t cross without getting wet.
We had our leadership council again in San Pedro, and it went well. We met the goal for the mission, and for the first time in years, in this mission we baptized more than 100 people in one month. Now they are pressuring us to baptize 150 in March, and then in April they want every companionship to baptize 4 people. It is going to be fun to try and reach these goals. It is all in our heads and in our faith. Miracles have not ceased. (Moroni 7)
I am doing pretty well. Personally I feel like I am growing and getting old, and I also feel like I am converting myself every day. I am going to try and speed up this next week because the last thing I need is to be discouraged right now. We gotta pick up the pace a little bit.
Fotos: comp, other dude, Presidents wife gave me a b day present, and 2 new foods. One is called La Gringa, and the other is a block of “honey” that was not so great and was a little too hard to eat. Love you all and I hope that you all have a good week!!!
It has been a super long week. It has been very stressful and probably one of the first weeks in a long time honestly. I think it was the first week in super long time that I was actually waiting a little bit for p-day to come around again.
We got to our house, cleaned that whole thing up, and got to work on the first day. My companion is also ZL and we are opening a new area right now… What a stressful transfer. We started with no lunches or dinners, no investigators, and without even knowing where the active members lived. At the end of the first week, we now know about half of the members, have a few lunches and dinners, have someone who lends us their washing machine, and have a good handful of investigators. We have yet to go contacting, and it has been something good for us, because it is going to help us stay motivated and only work with the members, which is the only way to work. (I convinced my companion)
I feel like I am going to learn a lot from new guy here. He is pretty cool, and one of the most truly christian people I have ever met. I am going to learn everything I can from him so that I don’t stay like old me. I always try to take the best from my companions and apply it to my own life in the way that I am. this is one of the most peaceable companions that I have ever had, and I hope to find a true zen with him *image of man floating, while meditating*
I hope that this week goes well for everyone, I am going to do my very best to have a good week out here. I love you all!!!
So… I got the transfer call last night. I am leaving the area, even though I have only been here for 6 weeks (1 transfer). It was way too fast and I was not waiting for this to happen. I hope to not get sad or anything and to keep working super hard. I was doing so well here and I don’t want to have to start all over again and leave all this work behind. But this is how the mission is, so I guess it is going to be this way. I knew it was too good to be true…
We had a baptism this last week, and it was pretty nice. At least I can say that I baptized in every area that I have had now… Also, something super interesting, I didn’t knock a single door in all of my time here. I only worked with members in finding part families and references, and this is the only way to work from now on.
I feel like I learned quite a bit honestly, even though I was just here for a little while, and I feel like I have worked with all diligence and as hard as I possibly could, so I feel good. Nothing else that is too interesting went on this week, and I have just been thinking about my future life for some reason. I don’t know why, but I feel more capable to think at a higher level and think rationally. I feel like mom and dad were right when they told us that our brains leak out of our heads when we are younger. I feel like I can take bigger decisions and also do things more rationally. I don’t know how to explain it, just that I am getting old.
Things I feel like I have learned: to be super diligent, a lot more patient, and be happy. Things I need to do better about: Delegate without just taking over, not get frustrated about unimportant things, and to be more humbler. I feel like I am doing good. My next companion is also going to be from the USA, and he will be finishing his mission in about 3 transfers, so it is very likely that I am going to kill him ( in mission terms ) (or literally, I don’t know yet)
I love you all and hope everything goes well for you all this week.
It has been a long week out here, and I am trying to keep it all together with some little stuff going on. I have a lot to learn here still, but here we are. My comp and I just need to talk some stuff out. It is nothing too big or interesting.
Our area is going really well. The married couple that we met went to church and I almost cried I was so happy!! We also are going to have a surprise baptism this weekend, because one of the kids that couldn’t get permission to get baptized finally got it, and he will be baptized this Saturday. We are also working with a few other awesome people that we hope to get moving quickly here.
I had to go to a leadership council this week with Elder Taylor (counselor in the area presidency) and the mission president. We got on the first bus that goes out to San Pedro, and they were getting after us for not being on time (on time being 1+ hours early), and I got frustrated with the APs. I don’t know what they wanted us to do in traffic other than wait for the bus to move forward haha. When I stood up to go to the bathroom, 30 minutes before the thing even started, the other AP told me “you have two minutes” and I basically told him he has no authority over me and to stop being so stiff. I think next time I am going to whip out D&C 121:34-46 on them and show them the real way the priesthood works.
I got to go back to my first area on splits again, which was a little weird. I avoided all of the members that I could, trying not to cause anything big, and just showed the other missionary all that his companion didn’t show him in the area. (My last companion in that area was his first comp, and he didn’t show him a good chunk of families that have a lot of potential, so I showed him all I knew and all I could. I also have pictures of a few families that missed me, the last ones from a family that invited us to eat dinner one of the days I was out there.
Our ward mission leader, ( a recently returned home missionary) gave us a referral yesterday, and brought us to the house of the family, and it was the most uncomfortable lesson I have ever had in my whole life. It is a married couple (Yaaaaaay) with their 4 kids. A boy (15) and three girls (18,19,21) The 21 yr one was calm and normal, and the 19 yr didn ́t stop talking… Ever… She is like Kelly on the office. and the 18 yr was weird too. They all wanted to take pictures with the two white dudes and they wanted us to visit them every day of the week. SNAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAKES We went running out of that house.
Well, that is basically my whole week. I hope that you all have gone well and that you can have a good coming week also. I love you all and hope the best for you!
Everything is just about the same, so I figured that I would take this time to tell you about some cool people that we have found out here.
First, the lunch lady that we have has some pretty interesting beliefs that are hard on me sometimes. She doesn’t let us wash dishes, clean up, or help her cook because “There are women present” so…. That’s something I had never ever heard before….
Also there are some weird old dudes from the United States down here that speak in mixed up Spanish and English that already have been here for a long time. Dudes that are like 70 who are married to girls that are between 20 and 30. So… that’s also something I had never seen before
We also have some cool people who are starting to progress out here and it makes me super happy. We have found them all through member references, and I am super happy. We found someone who already has an answer to her prayers, and is going to leave her work to be able to go to church, and I think she is going to be the first person that I am going to help get married out here and we are going to baptize the whole family. Also, we found another couple that are super smart and are super interested in the message that we have, and they are ALREADY married!!! so… Those are all things that I had never seen before.
I have always gotten along very well with my companion, and we are going to have some miracles out here with everyone’s prayers. I am super excited and hope that everything works out in the way that it should. I am doing really well and hope that you are all doing well too.
I love you all, and I hope you are all doing well spiritually, physically and emotionally
Basically everything is the same. There is no difference between the days, and at the same time, every single day is way different from all the others. I don’t know if you understand me, but it is something I imagine that every missionary understands.
I had something weird happen this last week. I bought a soap called Coast, not thinking about it and then afterwards I realized when I opened it that it is the same kind that dad always used…. So that was a little interesting. Now when I shower there are just a lot of homesick tears that rinse off my face… Hahahaha
I am getting along very well with my companion, and I think it is due to having to get along with my other companions that were a lot more difficult. I think you all would be surprised to know that I now know when to shut up, and how to have a calm conversation about two different opinions. I also don’t get so stressed out so fast, and I feel like I am becoming a better follower of Christ. I always look for something that I can do to help improve my ability to feel the spirit, and I recognize when I do something wrong because I feel it apart itself and I feel the need to repent. It is pretty cool. I never thought the spirit was literally your companion that just helps you do good stuff and stay away from bad stuff until I got out here and actually had some real experiences. I feel like if I wouldn’t have come out here, I would be super lost trying to recognize the spirit and never realizing what it actually was.
We had zone conference this week, and one of the most interesting things that president talked about was that missionaries have a ton of time to study. An average faithful member studies about 15 minutes a day (an example that we made), and we did the math to find out that to be able to study as much as a full time missionary in 2 years, that same member would need to study for 20 years. So basically we receive 20 years worth of knowledge from the scriptures in 2 years, and as long as we apply our faith, we can receive the light and the truth that it gives us. (D&C 88:118)
I am super happy, and am trying to get better every day. I love you all tons and hope you all have some good adventures this week.
It has been a pretty good week. We have been working hard with the Zone, which has been an adventure, to see all the problems that they have and try to come up with the most important solutions. We also have a great need to get some stuff figured out in our own area. While we were on splits, I was working hard to get a missionary to not just go knock on doors all day long, and when I got back to my own area, my companion told me all the appointments fell through and so he was just knocking doors all day long and everyone rejected them. They didn’t find anyone new. It was the biggest face-palm moment of my entire life. We can’t teach something that we don’t do. And we can ́t help others if we don’t know how to do it. I hope to get all this goofy stuff fixed up so we can start working efficiently and have some success.
We are finally in a super awesome ward, where we have ward council every week and coordination meetings too. The members leave work with us, and they help give fellowship and follow up to the people that we are visiting. Down here they always have a list of 5 families that they want to activate, and this is the first ward where they don’t just eternally assign those 5 families to the missionaries and wash their hands. They assigned ward families to visit them, visited all 5 and the next week 3 of the 5 were at church. It is going to be awesome to actually get some ward support out here, and what is going to matter most now is how we work. I am doing well personally. I am trying to be a better example for others. I am tired of leaders who always say one thing and can’t even do it themselves in their own areas. I want to be someone who does something and then asks others to do the same. Just as Christ did.
I just realized that I don’t have any pictures for you all this week, but next week I should have some. It has been good out here, and I am trying my best to stay encouraged and to have a good time helping others and focusing on the missionary work we have. I have been generally happy and doing good.
It has been a long and stressful week, but it has been good and I feel like a lot of growth is going to come out of where I am and what I am doing now. I feel like we are going to have a lot of challenges, but they are challenges that I have been waiting for. I feel like I overcame a lot in my last area, and like I am here for the next round of challenges. I am with another missionary from the USA, and it is a little weird but kind of nice honestly. We get along and get each others humor, and we don’t talk in English to show a good example and also because I hate English.
We have little problems in our zone we are trying to get figured out, and it is going to go well for us if we can get things going here. Our area is doing okay, but is a little rough for the lack of people they were teaching. I am entering again in an area that the last guy just finished the mission, so when I got here it was a little rough. The house was a disaster and had a whole bunch of old clothes all over the place that a ton of missionaries had left behind, so we spent all morning cleaning that thing up nicely. We now live in a house where you can feel the spirit 🙂
I feel a little sorry for my companion sometimes, because he has more time in the mission here than I do, and almost every house we have walked into, the people have told us that I speak more fluently and that my accent is almost gone, and then they ask me how much time I have in the mission. I always just tell them I have been out here for almost the year mark. I don’t want to go home yet….
Leaving my last area wasn’t as hard as the first time, although I left people crying, this time I felt bad because I didn’t cry too. I am already used to the changes that we have to make out here, between areas and companions, and now everything is just normal.
I have a leadership meeting tomorrow, and I think they are going to machete us to death in there, so pray for me to get to the hospital in time so that I don’t bleed out and die. President spends all his extra time sharpening his machete…
I love you all and have been praying for you all too, and I feel super good about everything at home. I am at like a 9.5/10 on basically everything that I feel. Just a little bit stressed about the new responsibilities, but I am sure that after about 2 weeks it will already be normal.
I love you all, uploaded goodbye photos, and also one of my new comp. I am pretty sure he wears size 26 pants…. so weak….
It has been a while since I wrote a group email, but here goes nothing. I was traveling almost the whole last week, a little sick, but all good now. I got back to my area on Thursday, already knowing that they were going to transfer me. I am going to go back to my first zone, but in another ward and I am going as a Zone Leader. It is super complicated, but Elder Birnbaumer (my first companion in this area) is now in La Masica, as a district leader, so we will still get to see each other, and it will be in my first area too. I hope that it all turns out well. President called me and said that I was going to go there, and he said that it is because I have been obedient, a hard worker, and I teach the other missionaries well, so he needs me to just keep doing the same out there. I hope it goes well for me and that I can learn a whole bunch from the experience.
It is hard to leave this area, I am happy and sad, and also hard to leave my companion even though in the beginning I wanted nothing to do with him. Now we have become one in Christ, and it is tough to leave him and others behind here. I know all will be well, and this time it is a little easier to say goodbye. I am used to having to just say goodbye to people and have to leave or have them leave. It is weird and I never thought I would get used to this.
I hope to kill it in my next area. I have learned a lot here, and I think that the best advice that I could give any person, missionary or member, or nonmember or whatever it may be, is that we all need to learn to love repentance. Repentance is not just asking for forgiveness. It is a change of heart and lifestyle to fit better with what God wants for us. I pray every morning specifically for God to help me recognize ONE thing that I can do better the next day, and at the end of the day, I ask for help to be better at that thing the next day. The next day I put it in practice and try to find the next thing to work on. It may sound like a lot of work, but it is better than making a list of a million things that we need to do better and then doing nothing. I love feeling like I get just a little tiny bit better every day. It makes me feel like this is the true path of discipleship. I am satisfied with my life and my work out here and I am giving it my all.
I love you all and know you are all doing well right now. I know you will keep doing well as we keep working out here in the Lord’s vineyard. I hope you go have awesome adventures in the snow and that you are all safe and having a good time out there. I love you tons and will talk to you all next week.