|Elder Nelson and Gaibor in Centro de Lima|
*(Because of technical difficulties, mostly my ineptness, Cameron only got a letter from Melissa this week. She used the right email address. Wish I had thought of that.)
Congrats Melissa, you get to receive this week´s letter. Mom must be really worried because her letter didn´t get through, but tell her not to worry, I´ll just read double next week or really I have a couple of letters from Cody Bake and Elder Cazier too.
EFY is a great program and just starting to get down here to Perú. The youth that go have an incredible week and their planners are filled with photos of youth from EFY in the US, so smile big whenever there’s a photo op, there could be a Peruvian on the other side of the lens!
What you said about the plan of Salvation is so true. It´s incredibly important for us to value our siblings and our parents when we´re here. I realized that too late in high school and really I wish I had a few of those weekends back so I could spend some more time at home. It´s never going to be important how many times you go to a party or hang out with your friends during your time growing up, but you´ll remember the times that you stayed home and spent time with Mom and Dad. They have so much to teach you and they love you so much. They value your agency and so they let you go to activities on the weekend, but they wish you would spend some time every once in a while bonding as the small family that´s still at home.
We don´t regularly teach people the plan of salvation until after they have a baptismal date, mostly because the message of the restoration is so important, but occasionally when we start with that lesson it´s really something special. If you want to learn anything about our Heavenly Father and the infinite love he has for each and every one of his children, read 2 Nephi 9 and pay attention to how he treats Adam and Eve even after they disobeyed his commandment.
We taught a family starting with the plan of salvation thsi week. Arturo is a mechanic and operates a garage with his wife Giovanna (yes like Pokémon). Our bishop gave us his name and address as a reference and we visited them a day or two later. We found the whole family home (Nicole 13 and Bryan 8 as well) at night and taught them the plan of salvation in two lessons, one with the family proclamation and the second with a pamphlet. The mom had a pretty heavy battle with depression a few years back, and still looks a little depressed every once in a while, but really this lesson brightened her face like nothing else could. She asked us about what happens after this life and then told us how she wants to use her experience as a positive thing to help others know that depression doesn´t have to be the end of it all. They are married in the Catholic church, but that’s not enough, so we are getting them married civilly this next month in the mission offices in a massive marriage.
The other family were going to baptize is the Gonzales family. They are married! They have a date set for next weekend to be baptized with their daughter that is 9, Joyce. Juan and Ericka also have a son who’s been a member since last November. He´s 15, and super strong, singlehandedly helping the Ramos familia to come to church. His dad took a sudden interest in why his son has changed so much in the past year and now he´s told us he wants to get baptized...no invitation needed. They are an incredible family, and this week he even traveled 5 hours from his work site (he’s working on a site 5 hours from home for the next 4 months) to come to church and he’s planning on doing the same thing next week. We are so proud of them and can´t wait to help them join their son in the church. We are planning on having Juan Ramos do the baptism, their families are super close friends.
The photos are one of me and Elder Gaibor in Centro de Lima, one of Elder Dansie, the other gringo in the zone (he’s from Las Vegas and a convert of 3 years), 1 of an interesting story I found in a members class manual, and two of the types of money that we use. Almost all of the money we use is in coins. If you use a bill it’s usually just to get rid of it so you have coins to use, pretty opposite the states actually. I walk around with probably about $6 in my coinpurse, but it’s enough to eat breakfast for half a week and also transport myself to the offices and back by bus. Yeah, livings pretty cheap.
|More Peruvian money|
Well, I love you all, I hope you had a great week like Melissa did. I pray for edifying experiences for each of you and I hope you are learning about the gospel. If you don´t learn something new about the gospel every week, look for a solution, you will always learn something new.