Elder West's Favorite Scripture
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
I forgot to tell you that they switched our p-days to mondays and internet day to tuesday, so that is why I have been writing you a day late.
This past week was a bit rough. It has been getting cold down here as well, it probably gets down in the low 40s, haha, but I bet that is nothing compared to chicago cold. This past week we only found 9 new investigadors, but they were pretty good ones. We found one family who recently moved from El Salvador, and we were really suprised when they took our their Hymn books and asked what hymn we should start off with, haha. Apparently the missionaries were teaching them in El Salvador and they were super close to getting baptized but they couldnt because they arent married. They couldnt get married because the husband (who is also a baker which is really cool) is from guatemala, but his wife/partner is from El Salvador. With all of the experience that I have marrying people I already know that it will be literally impossible to get them married. Because they probably his wife/partner is probably living here illegaly. (in my last area I tought a family where the mom was from peru and wanted to get married but couldnt because she had 75,000 quetzales worth of legal fines). And judging by the very small, house made our of cinder blocks and tin sheets we can very well assume that this family that we found could not afford to become legal citezens, let alone get married. It is really sad because this family is great! They already know that this is the true church of Jesus christ but it will be very very difficult for them to be able to repent in order to be baptized. The three most commonly commandments broken here in guatemala is first, killing people, second the law of chastity, and third the word of wisdom. And I think that more the 50 % if not100% of the poverty in this country is related to at least one of these 3 very big commandments.
Yesterday and today we had a Super p-day activity for our christmas treat! It was great. It started off yesterday with a bunch of service projects helping to fix members houses and stuff. Then we played games and ate free food. Then we watched a new church movie called the 17 miracles which was incredibly amazing. I nearly cried 17 times during this movies I think, haha. It is about the martin and willie handcart companies. you guys have got to watch it. It made me realize that the sacrifice that I have made to serve a mission is not a big sacrifice at all. In fact it is the least I can do to. Plus it strenghtened my faith about how god continues to be a god of miracle. In the movie in focuses on all of the miracles that happened along the journey. It is a must see, it would be a good sabbath day movie to watch with the family. Then we stayed the night at the mission bunk house (thats where all of the newbies stay the day before they enter into the field) and then woke up at 3 oclock to go to the temple. Oh and I forgot to mention that we started a fast after dinner to baptize 204 people in the month of january. And so I am still fasting and I am absolutely wiped. But it was a very spiritually edifying experience. The area authority presidency was also in the same temple session as us which was kind of cool.
Well I gotta go, but I love you guys one million. (i got grandmas letter that she sent, Thanks Grandma J)
P.S I complete 17 months on thursday! thats almost a girl mission!
So I completly forgot that it was thanksgiving last thursday. While we were eating breakfast my companion mentioned it to me so, I made an extra top ramen to celebrate. We also bought a popsicle after lunch. It was great.
So this week the work of the lord went very very well. We were able to find 21 investigadors! and 12 of our investigadors came to church. In the past 6 weeks we have found 58 new investigadors! It is incredible. Right before we got to this area the other elders that were here told us that this was a really really hard area to find new investigadors and this area has only had 4 baptism for the whole year. HA. I guess they didnt know that I was in one of the roughest area in the mission for 7 1/2 months. This area is heaven on earth to me. There are no large hills or endless stairs, it is safe (1 or 2 murders a month), and the people are really humble. As a mission we have really raised the bar a ton. We usually find about 1000 new investigadors each week and last month we had 180 baptism! For january we have a goal to baptize 204 people. When President Brough was here, he said the most succesfull month that they had was 203 baptisms so we are going to try and beat that.
Yesterday we found a new young couple who told us that they want to change their lifes, and have been living in unhappiness eversince they got married. I was sad for them, but at the same time my soul was rejoicing because I know exactly how the gospel of Jesus christ can help them.
That really poor family I told you about a few weeks ago is progressing really well. The branch president authorized a huge food donation for us without even telling us. Which is great! but they told all of their family members (who are many other very poor families) and for some reason all of them want to come to our church now hmmmm.... I wonder why? But its okay, we were able to talk with alot of them and many of them have good intentions in coming to church. We challenged all of them to be baptized and they all said yes (thats like 15 people) but we could tell that some of them just want more stuff. We had a good lesson with one of them who has a family of 6, and their kids have aspirations to be doctors and teachers, and I felt like I should promise them that if they remained faithfull in the church, kept all of the commandments, and served missions they would all be given the opportunity to accomplish their goals. This family has been stuck in this huge rut if poverty for generations and generations, in fact they are known in this town for being a very poor family with a lot of problems. If this family can become converted to the gospel they would be huge testimonies and examples for the entire town.
Today our zone went to Antigua, and I showed my companion all of the best parts. I sent a package of stuff about a month ago has it arrived yet? It contains a memory card of the first half of my mission and it would be very tragic if it got lost. I half been really good at buying suveniers and I would like to send you guys another package, but if my other package got lost then I just will carry around all of this stuff until the end of my mission. I got a hold of a really sweet machette for like 100 quetzales (12 dollars) that kevin would absolutely adore, haha.
Next week, President brough is going to let us go to the temple as a christmas treat! I am sooooo excited. I look forward to being able to go to the temple with all of you when I get home.
I also had a revelation yesterday as I walked past a window. I totally invisioned my self as an airplane pilot. And that Is what I really want to do, but if that is not possible I will just be a dentist or something. I will have to research that after I get back. Dont worry megan, I failed the driving test my first time as well, I did a very illegal manuver that wasnt my falt.
Have fun eating thanksgiving leftovers.