Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The Portilla Familia

Dear Familia,                                                                                                                       

No pictures this week, mostly because there wasn´t too much picture worthy haha Last week the same thing happened so we had to do the Pday photo shoot. That explains our pictures from last week, but well this one not so much.

Let Grandma Andy know I got her letter that she sent about a month ago, and that it was great to hear from her. She and Grandpa are near and dear to my heart and I was excited to see a card from Nampa.

About the new temple video, there’s a new rule here from the presidency del area que dice que no podemos visitar al templo mas que  2 veces al año incluso con conversos nuevos, entonces. (that says we cannot visit the temple more than 2 times a year even with new converts).  I’m saving one of the times to go close to my birthday, so if I miss writing you for a day or two, you´ll know why. I´ll be trying to let you know a week before though. 

I lost my voice around Wednesday and didn’t find it again until about Friday after noon this week. As a missionary that was pretty devastating. I had come to feel like I could talk to anyone anywhere in Spanish about the restored gospel that makes me so happy, but I was back to feeling like the gringo comp that can´t speak Spanish again. Every time I tried I fell into a coughing fit and had to pass off the conversation to Elder Mariscal. I spent a day in bed just resting, and that was frustrating too, but I am better now, teaching, but with a bottle of water in hand just in case. There was a harsh change in climate that got about half of us sick this week, but its warming up now. Staying in bed all day made me start dreaming. I’m the kind of person that doesn’t usually remember his dreams from the night before in the morning, but when I nap or when I wake up and then fall back sleep that’s when I dream.

Apart from that, we´ve been working with a less active family from Arequipa, the Portilla family, there’s Elizabeth, Gemma, Giannina, and the stepdad Fabian. The two daughters are 24 and 14 (3 days older than Melissa) and they each have a baby. Pick your jaw up off the floor please. Gemma has a baby from an Argentinian man whom she calls her pareja (partner) but they are very much separated right now. The mom and the older daughter are members, but the other two aren’t. Elizabeth the mom, has fibro myalgia, and so coming to church was a really big challenge for her. She sometimes can´t get herself out of bed until the afternoon but if she gets up early she’s disoriented and feels drunk. She wants nothing more than to help her daughters get back on the path before going the way of all the earth. She’s a little fatalistic, she thinks she’s got about 2 years to go before dying :/. 

Anyway, we had a really tearful lesson with them inviting them to come back to church, and they all accepted, but all based on Elizabeth going. Well, Sunday came and we picked up on investigator, and headed to the chapel. When we got there, there was about 5 minutes to go until 9 when church starts. We waited until the sacrament was about to start and then entered, disappointed and feeling a little discouraged because we had knocked on the door for their apartment (above ours) with an hour and a half to go before the meeting. Then a miracle happened. The hymn finished and before the priest could start saying the prayer, in came Elizabeth, and trailing were her dos (two) daughters and her husband. I couldn´t stop smiling and I knew it was a pure blessing and miracle that they had made it in time. Being in the chapel excited Elizabeth and she talked to bishop about activating her record. Her daughters say they are coming back every week and Fabian said it wasn’t half bad. WHEW! I was stoked all day long and still smile thinking about it.

Package stuff for E Mariscal, ya anything American is cool I think haha, he’s from here so he can receive things pretty readily. I’m out of time to add in this part, so whatever you send I’ll be grateful for!

There’s two sets of missionaries in barrio Año Nuevo, we are the new area set.

We will attend general conference in the stake center closest at about Universitaria and Micaela, it’s called the Retablo.

There are microwave ovens in most houses. We eat potatoes and rice and chicken prepared in a variety of different ways...that’s about 70 % of the food here. Then there’s spaghettis and sometimes beef, beans, but yeah rice potatoes and chicken for the most part.

Seasons are opposite here, so probably sweaters for March or April, and sunscreen for December haha. That’s a joke, I have a ton of sunscreen.

After a month of cold showers in my first area, I just kind of got used to it, but yeah here I got sick and then I didn’t shower for two days or so, I wasn’t about to make myself worse, there’s a guy coming today to install the shower.

I have the picture of the warrior, don´t worry. And the Ericksons I don´t think they have a blog, you could send a note to ask them if you´d like, they came for a baptism from the other elders here in Año Nuevo this week, but I won´t see them until October.

I love you all, I´m working hard and helping the Lord do His work. I love my time here, and this people, I honestly can´t imagine myself anywhere else. Please pay attention to conference and rewatch the parts where you might fall asleep. Every talk is important! Sometimes you just have to look for the why in your own time.


Elder Nelson

PS Hoorah for grape juice! Love that stuff.

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