Monday, January 27, 2014

Missionary Pace

Dear Family,                                                                                                            

What a week! I get to the internet cafe every week amazed that the week has gone by so fast and searching for something extraordinary to share with the family and friends I have. Something that can be hard for a missionary to transmit can be the sheer incredibility of the missionary work. We honestly can´t describe what it’s like unless you have been in the ward as our companion. For example, this week we needed to get the baptismal permission slips for Kevin and Yaquelin so that we could go forward with plans for the baptism. The dad works in the neighborhood where we live, so we planned to go by there first. We passed by and thankfully he was there, we asked if his wife and kids would be coming down from their house to sign the slips and be interviewed for their baptisms and he said...uhhh can we move this to another day (this was Thursday) they are in Independencia (half hour drive) and I have to go get them probably tonight then if they need this interview. So we moved the interview and the permission slips to the day before their baptism, and then when they didn’t call us to set up the interview time in the morning we decided that this required a little more effort on our part. We practically ran up the hill (300 stairs and then a rocky ascent) to get to their house quickly and not lose the zone leaders’ time for the interviews. We got there, sweating hard but ready to help them come down with their kids for the interview. What we found was an angry she dog ready to bite my shoe (she’s the size of chika no worries) for coming too close to her last puppy. We also found the family, but they weren’t ready to come down, and told us they could come down after lunch to the bishop’s house for the interview. ...uhhh yeah okay we can figure out a way to make that work we said and then started the long trek down. We did all of that in the space of about an hour and a half.
 Angie and her Missionaries

Angie, her grandparents and her Uncle Eric
So that was our first exciting experience of the week, the other was the day of the baptisms. Saturday we got up and went to the church after studies and breakfast and started to clean the font and the room where the font is. The morning went by super-fast and we ended up cleaning until lunch at 1, with the baptism at 3, my baptismal pants being mended by a member in the hills to be recollected at 2 and a lesson to teach to the recent convert that was fixing us lunch somewhere in there. Needless to say it was a tight schedule, but we made it to the chapel at 3:05 and by some strange happening the family had come early. This is the family of Angie, who´s pictures are attached. They wanted the baptism  early in the day to keep it private because Angie’s mom is pretty sick (with the hat) and can´t see a lot of people. In attendance were the bishop, the primary president, Angie her grandparents and her uncle, Erik. 

From there, we returned home to hang up the baptismal clothes and set the fan on high so that they would be dry at 8 for the other baptism. We left the house after leaving everything ready and left for the other area (Retablo) so that I could interview their baptismal candidate 1hour antes de su bautismo.. Leaving our area, a lady stopped us in the street saying she was a member from another stake and wanted us to come to her sons house to give him a blessing (her son’s not a member). We called ahead to Retablo saying we would be coming in a touch late, but not to worry and then went to his house. His name is Jose and he has a tumorous growth in his nether regions...suffice it to say that the Peruvian people are really really direct, and I don´t plan on picking that up :) We talked about the priesthood and then gave him the blessing, we will be going back on Wednesday after the surgery.

After that we left our area and got to the other area, gave the interview and left again because we had a dinner appointment that had already started to pass (appointment at 7 and then it was already 7:05) We get to the appointment in our area and start to eat when we get a call from the zone leaders saying that the MJs (single adults)

had an activity and that they needed us to come to the church early before the baptism to help them convince people to stay for the baptism. On full stomachs we ran home and grabbed my baptismal clothing (thankfully dry) and hurried to the capilla. Basically all went well after that and we returned home to absolutely pass out for the night.

We go at that kind of pace for a couple of days and it exhausts us, then we have really slow days, when it seems like all of the appointments we thought we had fall through. All in all it’s an average or accelerated pace, but it’s a total rollercoaster. I love it. It teaches me that this life is up and down all the time and that if we are true disciples of Christ, we can take the super up and downs to make the ride a little smoother for others. Really that’s what I’m coming to learn is the mission work here in Lima Norte. We work super hard and take the good the bad and the ugly in hopes that we calm the waves for the people we find in storm tossed seas. One of my favorite hymns has always been Master the tempest is raging, more for the musical quality than for the lyric, but as I think about this week, I think we can all depend a little more on Him in this crazy crazy life, and in so doing he takes our troubles and tells us to give them up. The chorus in Spanish:

Las olas y vientos oirán to voz:
Sean los mares que rujan más, o diablos que bramen con fuerte clamor, las aguas al barco no dañarán del Rey de los cielos y de la mar.
Mas todos ellos se domarán.
“¡Cálmense! ¡Cálmense!”
Mas todos ellos se domarán.
“¡Paz, cálmense!”

Whatever this life throws at you this week, remember this: He is the Master, and this ship will not sink mientras el lo guia. Espero lo mejor por cada uno de ustedes y deseo que dejen sus cargas a Sus pies.  (I hope the best for each one of you and wish you lay your burdens at His feet.)


Elder Nelson
PS. Happy birthday to Kolby and Darci, there are letters on the way but probably won´t get there this week you two are the greatest, stay strong and never look back

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