Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Libertador General San Martin (Ledesma), Salta - February 10, 2014

Dearest Family,
It sounds like you're all goin' through a tough time, but it was great to get your positive letters from every single one of you!
Anyway, so this week we helped a lot of the visiting teachers. It really is a great program! I love the way the church is set up so that you have someone there to help you always!
I'm kinda catchin a little of the Spirit of Elijah as I help the converts
with their family history. Thanks for helping out with my craving!
So Pablo.... He didn't get baptized. He was working extra hours all week to be able to have Saturday off for his baptism, so we weren't able to find him. In the morning on Saturday he went to go help out a cousin with a project in the mountains. The truck broke down and they had to walk back. It took them the majority of the day, and despite the fact we passed by his house around 10 times, he didn't make it back until very late. In church he talked to the branch president about a couple concerns that he had. We've never really talked about his family in Buenos Aires, but it seems as though it's a bigger deal than we thought. I'll keep you posted on when he finally gets baptized!
We had a successful family night! Usually very few people go, but this week we had quite a few. We played a game with a tower made of flour and you had to cut off parts without making the candy on top fall. If it fell, you had to eat it with your mouth only. It was really fun, and the investigators enjoyed it!
We got to paint! I love doing service projects! It was great to finally get a chance! The paint here is really different, but it's a lot easier because it doesn't require skill!
The Book of Mormon is awesome. While I was doing exchanges with the zone leader, he had to use the bathroom really bad. We stopped by a member's house, but there wasn't a male. We ended up inviting a guy from the street to be in the house with us! While I waited with him for my comp, we read in the Book of Mormon together. It was quite fun!
We also got to read with a less active who works as an undercover cop. Of all the parts we could have read, we read the title page. Wow! It invited the spirit so strong. The book just has power!
Right before that lesson, it started to rain quite a bit and our plans in the other side of the city had fallen through. It was in that moment when the taxi-driver brother of Pablo came by and offered us a lift! Little miracles make life really fun.
Yesterday there was a huge rainstorm. Normally we don't have issues with leaving the windows open, because the roof extends over the windows about a foot or two. This rain was almost horizontal. Totally nuts! Lots of stuff got wet. My shoes are drenched. It even made it over the top of my boots! Even so, it was really fun to just keep going around, saying hi to people in their houses. It reminded me of the quote from Joseph Smith - "The work of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and independent." I testify that it will. His work is our perfection and salvation. Sometimes there are trials, but if it weren't for those, God's purpose could never be accomplished. I love the gospel. I'm so grateful for a wonderful family that always supports me. I love you guys so much! I hope you all have a great week!

Monday, February 3, 2014

Libertador General San Martin (Ledesma), Salta - February 3, 2014

Hello Beloved Family!
The ward sent me the newsletter! That´s kinda fun! I couldn't read much of it, so maybe I'll print it later, but tell them thanks for me!
I used family search this week! It was weird from an Argentine perspective. Mine is really boring. It's all filled. Our converts have nothing. So we get to help them fill it! That´s really fun. Especially when their family members are members as well!
I've spent this week studing verse by verse in the first chapters of Nephi and something of Isaiah. It's really cool! Just reading in Chapter one, there´s so much packed into the first 6 verses! After studying all the cross references, I decided that there´s no way that Jospeh Smith wrote the Book of Mormon... Again. It just really is incredible the depth that the scriptures have!
Our branch president is on vacation! It's really great. He´s not working, so he's got all the time in the world to do whatever! We had a great branch council and we're currently working on helping the sisters with their visits. It's great!
I did exchanges with Elder Parada this past week for the second time on my mission. He's from Colombia, but he acts super gringo. It was so weird comparing the exchanges this time to the exchanges from a year ago. It was very different. Crazy what time can do to ya.
PABLO IS GETTING BAPTIZED! I'm just really excited about that. We went by to go with him to church and he was there waiting for us. He's also truckin' through the Isaiah chapters like a pro. I'm convinced that the difference between him and other investigators that haven't progressed as much is the reading in the Book of Mormon. Even though he admittedly doesn't understand much of it, just by reading it he knows it's true. The branch is pretty excited and so are we!
We had three investigators in church! It was kinda unexpected. Pablo came from the beginning. From there Lucila (who's awaiting the paperwork for her marriage) showed up late, even though she said that she wouldn't be able to come due to work. Lastly came Gladys - Elio's mom. I don't know if I've said much about Elio, but he's pretty close to baptism. He just has to decide to do it and realize that the church is true. Other than that he's good - keeping all the commandments and such. Fun thing about Gladys - she's never made it due to work, illness, and a million other excuses. Then, yesterday, even though Elio was sick, she showed up. She was about to go home when a 19-year-old sister said, "Hi! Come on in! Everyone's in this class back here!" She resisted, but the sister took her by the hand into the class. Yay for member missionary work!
Speaking of that, we had a fun experience of running into two references that just happened to like to play soccer with members. It's super easy to teach when the members have already paved the way.
Anyway, I hope you all have a wonderful week! I love you all! Thanks for all you do for me!