Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Happy Birthday!!

Hey family!!! 
Well it`s Monday again!!! Nick, happy birthday!!! Hope all your dreams come true!  I will be there for you next birthday!  Well things here are going great!  We are just chugging along with the work and hope that everything turns out okay.  Sometimes I wonder if what we are doing will bring any results and then the Lord just helps us along so we don`t have to wonder or worry if our work is worth the effort. 

This past week my companion completed two months in the mission and I completed 13 months in the mission.  I tried to make her two month mark the coolest day ever but everything I do is kind of useless because she feels like she has a LOOOONNNGGG time to go before she finishes her mission.  Especially when the people here ask how much time she has before she can go home.  When she says,  "I still have 16 months left."  people here always make faces like... "Are you serious???"  One investigator even said, "The mission thing is an obligation... No one in their right mind would voluntarily do this... right?"  When we told him... "No, haha we signed up for this", he seemed to think we were crazy... But I even thought I was crazy when I first got here to Ecuador... 

Well.... It is hotter than Hades and it is raining like crazy and I don`t know why people live here... No the real question is why the people don`t have air conditioning.  Because I could live here... (wait...I am living here!) But it would be nicer if air conditioning existed. Also these people drink HOT soup before every lunch and dinner... That is something I will never understand.  AND they drink this hot thing called "colada"  which is the grossest concoction on the planet.  They make it out of cooked oats that they liquefy with milk and then they add fruit to it.  It`s gross you're not missing anything. But when it is really hot I don`t know why they serve us more hot things to eat.  It is cruel and unusual punishment to me.  "Can we just have like a salad or something?" -kid from Nacho Libre (that line has so much more meaning to me now) 

Well what else happened... My compànion almost got bit by a dog.... We both got really sick yesterday and were up all night from the bad food we ate... not fun... But we are better. Everyone lies to us and says they are not home or not available to listen to us.  But besides all of that we are really happy and it`s because we know what we are doing is right.  And the gospel is true!  That is all that matters! 

This week Beatriz got baptized... Yes it was a miracle. That woman was so hard to figure out. One day she would be happy with everything we said and would be a little optimistic about her baptismal date.  Then the next day she would be opposed to everything we said and ask really difficult questions that were practically impossible to answer let alone in Spanish. But through all the ups and downs she took the plunge.  

Her baptisms was kind of a flop though.  We told everyone in the ward 7:00.  People the baptism is going to start at 7:00 on the dot!!! So please be there to support us.  Well we got to the chapel at 6:45 and as we stepped out of the dirty bus, Beatriz was just pulling up to the church on her motorcycle. We went inside and showed her the baptismal font and her baptismal dress and then we waited for the people to show up... And we waited some more.  When 7:30 rolled along I then called the Bishop asking where in the world he was since he was going to baptize Beatriz.  He told us he was on his way.  After that phone call I started calling other church members like crazy trying to persuade/ask/beg/plead them to come... And everyone said NO!!!! Ahhhhh then I received a phone call from our ward mission leader saying that he was really sick and couldn`t come to the baptism either.  So not only did I have to say the opening prayer and lead the music and give a talk I had to DIRECT THE BAPTISM!!! It was kind of awkward saying, "And now I am going to talk a little bit about baptism and after I finish talking we are going to have the baptismal ordinance performed by Bishop...."  But it turned out okay considering it was a complete disaster. 

But after Beatriz changed back into her dry clothes she came into the room and her three year old daughter ran up to her and gave her a big hug saying, "HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!" It was pretty cute but those kids are so smart.  It was Beatriz`s birthday... it was the day she was born again!!  It really touched me and I was so grateful to have played a little part in helping Beatriz along the way.  I am so grateful to be a missionary and I know that there is lots of work to do and only FIVE MONTHS to give it my all!!! Wish me luck! 

Love you all more than I miss you!  
Love Hermana Welch #1 (Jess) 

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