Hola Familia! June 3, 2013
Things got a little crazy here this week. As a result, I have a new room, a new companion, a new laundry sister, and now we have medio pension which is pension just for Dinner. So from the beginning, last Thursday I think it was, Elder Arce got a call from his trainer, Elder Garcia, who is leader of a zone in the offices area. It was a warning that the other elders destined for Argentina were leaving in the morning for their mission and that we would likely get a call soon from the zone leaders. Well, he was dead on, but we had already started moving rooms because of the twice weekly fiestas above our old room. So half of our stuff was in the old room and half in the new room. Well the end of the month was approaching pretty fast, so we called the bishop and we moved all of the stuff except a desk and a couple of things for hanging clothes, and the water heater for the shower to the new room. It´s a pretty small space, so we played “tetris” for a while. For a reference, the two rooms are like my old bedroom with a bathroom that’s probably about 10 square feet. Also we fit two beds and two desks and an armoire in the space. It´s a little cramped, but cozy and easier to clean than the other one. So elder Arce left for Argentina early on Thursday morning and then there was a conference with President Blunck all day on Thursday. I was in a trio for a day and a half and then waited at the offices for three hours for my new companion from the jungle. His name is Elder Gaibor, from Equador, yes it rhymes and is great fun to say under my breath :)
Our first actions on the night after he got here (Friday night) were to teach a few lessons. But the morning after, we moved the rest of the stuff. I´ve taken icy showers for about a week, but it was the same my first week here, so no biggie. We also spent some time making our beds so that we aren’t sleeping on the floor on mattresses. The zone leaders are finding pieces to a bunk bed for us so that we can have a touch more space soon as there is only a foot in between the two beds and at the foot for movement. The climate change from the jungle to Lima and the lack of clean air here messed with Elder Gaibor a bit and so he spent a day laid out in bed and I spent the day studying and prepping lesson plans and organizing the room. I gave him a blessing in the morning and he started to feel better toward the end of the day, so we went to mission correlation meeting and taught some less actives a lesson then headed home. Sunday however, was great, Elder Gaibor is really teaching me to ask EVERYone for references. With him we are having a lot of success with the members, even less actives. He has about a year in the mission and it shows.
Juan and Maritza and us had a lesson last night that was really good., They told us about some miracles that happened surrounding their baptism that we hadn’t known about, and I bore testimony of the importance of keeping a journal of the blessings that our Father gives us. Juan told me that he will plan to do that starting that night. However, here’s a couple of the miracles that happened for them.
Juan is a machiner, he builds machines for companies that hire him to a specific purpose. At his job site this week (in between his baptism and his confirmation) he was cutting some steel pipe (about 4 inch width) and he had this thought come into his mind to be careful. Well he thought to himself that he was always careful with this particular machine because of the dangerous nature of the beast. He was checking the sides of the cutter when the steel pipe bent in half instead of cutting. The pipe passed on the side of his arm not even but almost grazing it. But his head had been in the spot at the same moment seconds early and it would have crushed his skull. How incredible is that! He said he knows now that the same feeling came over him during his confirmation that came over him when he had the thought to be careful.
The two parents have seen some incredible changes happen in their home because of their listening to the missionaries, and they’ve also noticed that during fast and testimony meeting, almost all the testimonies have the usual common things and in addition they mention the change that’s happened because of the missionaries (almost our entire ward are converts of varying times in their lives) Juan and Maritza say that their daughters are always kind to each other but now, they are extra careful to serve one another. Also their daughter Yubiza left her work, which was a stress on the family and on Sundays, specifically because she wanted to spend time with the family. It’s incredible the things that they have done even without us asking, and its evidence to me that our Heavenly Father works in us constantly to mold us into the people we have the potential to be.
The family even have introduced us to the brother and sister in law of Maritza to teach. They attended the marriage, baptism and even the confirmation. He’s a former Jehovah´s witness but left their church because he watched his aunt get shunned by his grandma for committing a single sin. The whole congregation apparently doesn´t talk to you ever again if you sin. You can attend but nobody will acknowledge your presence. It’s super sad, but its opened a door for this brother and his wife to be able to listen to us with open hearts.
So in answer yes, we are always working with new investigators and with less active members in order to gain new investigators. We do a lot of work trying to reactivate converts who aren’t quite fully converted, but he majority of our work is with less actives and investigators.
Yes my pen is ballpoint.
Hooray for cocoa, its super expensive here. oh and a drink you ought to try: Evaporated milk with a couple of spoons of sugar like a third of a cup or less of the milk with the rest of the mug filled with hot water. That’s super common at breakfast here with nesquick or milo (fortified nesquick) if you want some other flavor to it. It´s super good, but I’m sure super fattening haha.
I love you all and pray for each of you often, just know that I am safe and happy and working in the Lord´s vineyard to brings souls from the harvest.