Monday, December 23, 2013

Salama Salama (week 48)

Hey guys I loved your letters this week as always and little Charlie just sounds like the absolute funniest. I can’t wait to talk to that kid next week haha. He is just the best.  Man mom and dad your dates just sound like the best man and that is just what I loved to do was go to cheeseboard and just explore and enjoy life in san fran and berkely.  It’s the best.

Ok so I’m here in Salama Baja Verapaz. The area is a good area.  We don’t have a ton of investigators right now and that more than anything is the biggest issue. This next week we are really going to focus on that. This area is way different than all the other areas I have had in my entire mission. I am actually in a downtown type of setting. I’m in a little city which is different than all of my other areas. San Jose is a little pueblo and same with Cubulco and San Cristobal. So that is the biggest difference. The branch has over 100 attending which is the first time I have had that since San Andres in Peten so we at least have some support in our area. We have members that leave with us as well and that is something I haven’t had in 6 months haha.  It’s funny because even though I have a bigger branch and members in my area I still have the same problem of finding and teaching investigators that want to progress.  I like this area though.  I think the best part is this house of youth there is in my area. The missionaries baptized like this entire youth house for orphans here in Salama. Those kids are sooo funny! We go there like every night to eat. They are nuts and soo funny they are soo much fun.   It makes me think of when I was like 16 years and in priests haha such good times.  Alright now my comp… well where to start with elder bonilla. Well he is from mexico like 45 mins outside of DF.  Well let me some it up by saying that he is the man.  He is soooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo funny. I’m literally laughing at every little thing that he says. I don’t know why but he is soo funny it’s just the best.  I love they guy to death. I think that he has like 19 months in the mission. He went up to zl 3 months ago. He is a convert to the church and was baptized when he was 14.  The work with him is awesome. He has a ton of experience teaching and I am learning a lot with him and bettering my teaching every day.  Ya so I couldn’t be enjoying my time with him anymore. I like my new assignment a lot. It’s a lot of responsibility but I like that. It keeps me on my toes and I think it just prepares me for work and school when I get home. We are always putting together goals for the zone and we talk with the assistants and president about them and about what things we can improve on. It’s fun having that kind of a connection with the pres. I can tell him what I think and give him my opinion and he actually takes it into consideration. Let me just say that I couldn’t be any more happy with my pres.  I don’t think I have said that in a while but he is just the best. He is a convert to the church and he just has such a strong spirit with him. You can just tell that everything that he says is inspired. When he talks to you you can just tell that he loves you and wants the best for me and for all the other missionaries. I’m confident that I have the best mission pres in the world. Pres. Watts was great too but there is just something about Curtiss that I just love. I think it is the fact that he can laugh. That to me is just something that is soo important. Like you can be serious and spiritual but still be able to have fun and laugh and he just has the best sense of humor.  Hermana Curtiss is great as well. When she is talking you can just feel how much she loves us and how she just wants what’s best for us. I am so blessed to have just the best leaders and president in the world. I love the mission. I love my comp. Salama and my president and just life in general.  Love you all family and don’t forget to pray and read your scriptures.  Look for opportunities to share this gospel because every needs it. Pray for opportunities to talk to people about the church. Pray for strength to know what to say when the time comes. Love you all family and have a good week!

my comp the tall one and one of the assistants my old zl his name is elder trujillo

just a member killing the pig for christmas
(I hate this one and didn't want to add it but since Nick sent it home I did...)

some of the petojos and i in that youth house

Thursday, December 12, 2013

I have a change ( week 47)

Hey team loved your letters this week and I love the Christmas season.  Even though to be completely honest with you all it couldn’t feel any more not like Christmas.  Man it’s really not a winter wonderland at all… I’m sweating as we speak…haha  

Ya team so as you can tell I have a change in the mission. I’m going to be a zone leader in Salama which is in Baja Verapaz.  Let me tell you how I feel… pumped and sad.  I’m sad because I am now leaving Cubulco after only 3 months and I’m leaving that place with 7 fechas that are all pretty fijo and are going to get baptized.  That’s just great because although I am not going to be there when they get baptized I’m going to get credit in heaven for finding and teaching them…haha.  I’m sad about that and because this area of Cubulco is more ready to hear the gospel than any other area I have been in thus far in my mission. It was the best opening up this area to missionaries for the first time.  That was soo fun talking and contacting people that have never seen us before.  It was the best. I’m soo sad to be leaving that area. I worked so hard there and I’m not going to be there to see the blessings…haha  Well that’s just the way the mission works though so it’s all good.  The other hard part about leaving Cubulco is the fact that I am going to have to say goodbye to Basilio Alverez that inactive member we found. Ya he is going to be a leader in the church... I know it.  He is sooo pilas and I love him so much.  Also saying goodbye to Hermana Maria was tough too.  It’s hard having so much love for these people then out of nowhere having to say goodbye.  I just love those people so much.  Ok now about my change to Salama.  I’m pumped to have the responsibility of my zone and its going be so fun.  I am also excited to have a more personal relationship with the president because I am going to have to talk to him like every day. Oh, and to have a good rama here in Salama will be great.  Ya so those are the changes.  I’m pumped and sad but I guess that is how it always is.  Now for the last week in Cubulco and it was awesome. We had a baptism which is just the best and only the second one in Cubulco but it was awesome.  Her name is Joslyn and she is 10. She has gone to church a ton because her mom’s friend is Mormon and always brought her to church. Yea so I baptized her and her parents pretty much wanted nothing to do with us. That was until they came to her baptism. They felt the spirit at the baptism of their daughter so strong I know it. The next visit we had with them they had changed completely and said they are going to get married on Wednesday so they can get baptized asap.  That’s the best and a great testimony builder. They went from not wanting anything to do with the church to now wanting to get baptized all from feeling the spirit.  There are so many little miracles happening in Cubulco it’s crazy.  I wish I could tell you all of them but I really can’t. Family and friends the church is true.  I know that without a doubt.  Today is the day of your repentance so don’t procrastinate it.  I could not be happier as a missionary of the lord.  I look forward to helping the people of Salama come unto Christ.  Love you all and have a good week!
Elder Call

hermano robeto and i and the the tie he gave me remember this tie story

my comp and I on a bus

basilio alverez and i that less active i found and brought back to the church in cubulco

basilio and the fam of hermana maria we all got together last night to watch the christmas devotional at the house of hermano basilio. he invited all these people to his house to watch it and made dinner for us he is the man

my zone with me focusing on keeping a little toy bird i won in pictionary today haha

my district and I was in charge of for like 12 weeks

this is a great pic. there was just some guy walking on the street with a bunch of goats and i couldn't figure out what he was doing until i went up close and realized that he was selling the milk of the goats fresh literately squeezing it out of the utter into a cup and selling it to people. i didn't try it because i was scared i was going to get a disease but i wanted to. that just something you don't see in the states

josylin and her parents

the branch of rabinal supporting the baptism

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Thanksgiving in guat (week 46)

Wow guys your thanksgiving sounded sooo good. It put me soo baggy. You guys did exactly what I love to do. Beach and san fran and eat haha. I’m trying to think if there is anything better… hmmm no.  Like mom and dad I know you guys know how good that is but I wonder if ella and ben do because I think those kids have no idea haha. I’m glad to hear that you guys had a great thanksgiving.

Alright so this thanksgiving was cool too. I can’t believe that it was a year ago when I heard elder holland talk to us in the mtc.  Man time flies. So we had to come down here to Salama from Cubulco on Thursday because we needed to sleep at the zls house. We had a missionary conference con president amado in Coban and so we needed to leave super early. So ya we had thanksgiving dinner at the house of a members house here in Salama. She knows the states and how thanksgiving is so we had turkey potatoes and well pizza for an appetizer. It was good I mean for guat. Let me tell you guys that nobody has better food at thanksgiving then us.  It was fun though eating some somewhat American food.  It was a lot of fun being with the other missionaries and being baggy together haha.  It was a fun night. The next day we had the president amado conference. That was great and I love being in the presence of general authorities.  You can always feel the spirit soo much and I learned so much and I can’t wait to apply it to my life and in my area of Cubulco.  The best thing that happened this week though was yesterday we had a lesson with one of our investigators. She always wanted to get baptized but hasn’t been able to because her dad wouldn’t give her permission. Well we fasted and well her dad gave her permission it was great. It was a complete miracle. Ya so she is going to be getting baptized this weekend hopefully unless some freak thing happens.  Also her parents want to listen to us and want to go to church so hopefully we can get them in the water soon also haha.  Man like I said last week. I have seen so many miracles in my area. We haven’t had baptisms yet but I have found and taught 8 people.  Like I told you they want to get baptized but can’t right now. So I planted the seeds and they are going to get baptized in the future.  We also found a member named Basilio Alverez and I think I told you about him.  Well ya he wants us to teach his family now so we should have a bunch more investigators. Man overall the mission is the best. I did miss thanksgiving with the fam but I’m perfectly happy here in guat. Love you all and have an awesome week and remember to choose the right.  This life is sooo short compared to the eternity.
Elder Call

thanksgiving dinner 

and the first vision but elder call style

I have no idea what to put for my subjects anymore (week 45)

Hey team loved your letters this week. Man I didn’t even know that it was thanksgiving this week haha. Ya so to answer your questions no I don’t think they celebrate that here. I’ll tell you what though they are always celebrating something and I don´t get it.  Man thanksgiving without john and ann that’s weirder then heck.  I can´t believe it because that has been thanksgiving for the last 15 years. What a crazy change. All I ask is that next year for thanksgiving we are all together haha. Great to hear that grandpa brown is recovering well.  Ella, I loved your letter too. Glad to hear everything is going well.  How do you like theater and how is it being in middle school?
Well the big thing for this week is that I found a house in Cubulco to live in finally. So my comp and I will be moving back there shortly because we are taking a bus from Rabinal to Cubulco to work and then from Cubuclo back to Rabinal to sleep every day.  Ya so we found a house and it’s such a dope house as well.  It will be nice working in Cubulco full time again because the other elder who got hurt in Rabinal is now back in Rabinal.  The only thing is we are really not working full time over there because the last bus leaves at like 5:30 so we lose something like 3 hours of working every night.  It’s all good though because we have a house and we are going to move back there tomorrow.  Ya so all I can say about this week is it was full of miracles. Not big ones but little ones and it’s such a testimony builder for real. I have never had a point in my life where I have felt the lord’s help in my life so much. I can literally feel his hand guiding us along with finding new investigators, with teaching, knowing how to teach, and with finding a house to live in this week.  The odds are always against us but we always manage to do fine.  I really wish I could tell you over email but I really can´t because it just won’t do it justice how I feel. My testimony has grown more here in Cubulco then any other place in my mission I think.  This week especially and I don’t know exactly why but my comp and I were just walking with the spirit and it’s like Jesus was walking right there with us. We talked to everyone and everyone wanted to listen to us. We put like 5 new fechas out this week as well. None are for sure going to get baptized as of right now but getting fechas is a start. We just taught like a ton of like small super super spiritual lessons.  Ya so basically I am loving the mission and it is the freaking best. It kinda makes me sad when I think that I only have one year left because I wouldn´t really mind doing this for the rest of my life haha.  The church is true and that is a fact and if you guys don’t have a strong testimony get one. It’s not that freaking hard just pray, do your part, and be humble.  Love you all and have a good week.
Elder Call

Some pics I took while riding on the bus...