Well how are things going this week for all of you? I hope that you all are doing really, really well and that the school year has started off great for everyone. This week with my new companion, Hermana Paasaca, was a really good week. This week actually went by really really fast... Before I know it this transfer will be over! I honestly can`t believe how fast the time flies down here... I just count Mondays (P-day) Tuesdays (district meeting in the morning) Thursdays (Weekly planning) Sunday (Dia de reposo/Sabbath day) and repeat a few times and I am practically home! Haha just kidding... But seriously the mission flies!!!!
Since I was in the area before Hermana Paasaca I am kind of in charge of planning and coordinating everything till she gets hang of the area and everything... Let me just say... it isn`t that easy but we are working on it. I have to remember where these people live... I have to remember the names of the members... And that is probably the hardest part... (Here is just a hint for you at home... Members go easy on the missionaries if they don`t remember your name... We are trying I promise...) I think I offended a sister in the ward because I couldn`t remember her name. Sorry! But Hermana Paasaca is great and if we get lost she just smiles and says it is okay... Whew!
This week was pretty normal we didn`t run into any drunk guys or eat anything too crazy. We are just knocking on doors and running into less active members! Haha it is funny but sad at the same time. We will be testifying about Joseph Smith and the Restoration of the Gospel and these people say, "No, they are Catholic" or "they are Evangelists"... But we keep talking and teaching and as we get closer to the door, they finally they admit that they were baptised 15 to 20 years ago and they left the church... They usually leave the church over something really little... Like some member said something and they were so offended they couldn`t come back... It is pretty sad hearing these less active members feel justified for not going because they were "offended".... I heard one guy in a church talk say, "It takes a fool to offend but a bigger fool to take offence".... I really think that is true.
One thing that we have discovered is that even though these people are less active and they have been less active for a number of years... They still know that these things are true... We asked one of these less active members how they felt when they were baptized and she said she knew she was doing the right thing and that she was still grateful to the missionaries who taught her. It was pretty neat, she still had her original copy of the Book of Mormon with a picture of the missionaries who baptized her glued into the cover of her book. I was so touched that I almost started to cry. She remembered the missionaries names and where they were from... How could these members fall away from something that they know is true...
I remember singing in the April General Conference with BYU-Idaho`s choir and we were singing, "Let Zion in Her Beauty Rise." I remember we all were singing our absolute best knowing that the Prophet was just a few rows away and wanting to show our best for the Lord. I still remember a line from that song,
"That glorious rest will then commence
Which prophets did foretell,
When saints will reign with Christ on earth,
And in His presence dwell.
A thousand years, oh, glorious day!
Dear Lord, prepare my heart
To stand with thee on Zion`s mount
And never more to part."
I was brought to tears at the end of the song, the spirit was so strong. Isn`t this our goal-- To stand with the Lord and never ever fall away? I just wish everyone who enters into the Gospel understood what it means to endure to the end, because that is what it's all about, enduring! Repenting and enduring, repenting and trying again and enduring. Repenting.
This week we also are teaching our little Masias Family... They really are great! Their dad is still a little bit iffy about everything but I think he gains a little bit more confidence every time we come over. Especially since his son is starting to gain a testimony. It is pretty cool to see his son testify about the things that we are teaching. But this Saturday we had a Stake Conference and the Masias Family went! When they walked in I had to keep from cheering! They usually can`t make the meetings on Sundays so yeah it was great to see them. But what was better was our mission president and his wife gave talks during the conference. On Saturday night, our mission president asked the Zone leaders to provide a list of names of all the investigators who might be in attendance during the meeting. Our zone leaders called us Sunday morning and we gave them the names of the investigators who were going to be there. During his talk he read off all the names that he had and welcomed them all personally! I couldn`t believe it! Then he testified about the church and about how it is all true. He testified to these investigators about the decision to get baptised... It was a really spiritual experience for all of us. I can`t imagine what it would have been like for our investigators.
After the meeting was all over Hermana Paasaca and I ran to go say hi to all of our investigators. When we were by the Masias family, Hermana Amaya (The mission presidents wife) signaled to me to stay there and that she wanted to come and talk to our investigators. She then came down and talked to our investigators, then President Amaya came and talked to our investigators as well... It was really a nice experience. He talked to them all and promised them some pretty special blessings. Our investigators then left and President Amaya told Hermana Paasaca and I how important it is to teach families and why the gospel is for families! He then told us that he was proud of us finding and teaching this family and trying hard to teach the father as well. It felt great hearing him say all those things. But Hermana Amaya then congratulated me on my Spanish as well... Lets just say I was skipping out of the conference!!! Ahhh! All this hard work is for something!
Well I need to wrap this up.. I will send pictures next week! I love you all more than I miss you! I know that this church is true and there is no doubt in my mind about it!