Still alive and doing well here, no sickness or anything yet, all has been great! I don't have very much time to write today because we got a call last night that Elder Lewis has special changes, so I will have a new companion this afternoon. It is really weird that they would transfer out a trainer halfway through a change, but it might be because Elder Lewis has been here over 6 months so he would have been leaving this change anyways but now I will get to spend almost my whole time with my new companion, so hopefully he is cool, it is weird because I feel like we just started to work really well and click together and now there is a new companion. Also, I am really scared because I am in charge of like knowing the people from the area now and how to get around which is not something I was planning on.
All in all, we had an awesome week though. Thursday we do a planning session for the whole week and I had the impressions to look at the old investigators and menos activos and we were able to put in our schedule to go and try and contact a lot of people because right before I got here they had a big baptism and so now most of the lessons we teach are to actives and recent converts so we need to be teaching more investigators and less actives so that went really well and everyday we have been trying really hard to contact all of those people! It was perfect because Wednesday I was feeling a little homesick again but then that got me re-excited on Thursday and I am doing awesome again, and am so excited to get to work.
Our main investigators are Ana, Susena, Maria & Carlos, and Gabrielle. Ana has a really hard time understanding the lessons so we take like 3 appointments to teach each lesson, but she has been able to retain more and more each time and it is definitely because of the spirit! Her siblings were baptized right before I got here. Our problem with her is that she doesn't want to go to church because she doesn't understand it, we were supposed to baptize her next Saturday but you have to go to church 5 time before you can be baptized so we will have to push that back:( Then Susena is brand new and she is golden! She came to us asking about all these things that are in the bible and why aren't thy in the Catholic church and how she thinks she should have a personal relationship with God, and boom we have all her answers! She was the first person I got to ask to be baptized and she said yes! Only problem is her husband is very anti-religion and is an alcoholic so we will see how this goes week by week. Next Maria and Carlos, Maria loves the gospel and has already almost read half the Book of Mormon in just a few short weeks but Carlos is less sure. We were able to share the story about Alma 32 and the growing of faith with him, and I really home that helps because I think that like it says in Alma 32:21 he thinks he needs to know 100% but faith is about taking that first step and believing that what you've been feeling is right! Then there is Gabrielle who like Susena and Maria is just perfect! But, her boyfriend just got out of jail so they can't be married until he is off parole, and she can't be baptized while they are living together and not married:( so I might not see much progression there!
Okay, the food this last week was so good!!! I love the food here, I can't even really describe it, but pretty much we start every meal with like a soup, then we have like tomato rice with vegetables in it, some incredible meat dish with a savory sauce and tortillas! Then we drink like limeade or fruit punch pretty much is the best way to describe it, and have like fruit with cream for dessert! And I am not sick yet! Haha
We have been spending a lot of time with the menos activos, and it is so hard to get them to come to church because apparently its part of the culture here that you don't need to fulfill your commitments so people say yes to things we ask just to avoid confrontation with no plan of doing it! The culture is very different here, it seems like about 50% of the people have children before the turn 18, it is incredible how many people my age or just a little older already have families, it is sad, but they are so happy too! It really reminds me of kind of a run down Rome here. There is no way of differentiating what is in a building just by looking at it, and most people like run business right out of there houses, and it's a lot like that, just not as touristy! Also, it is really cold here in the mornings and the nights because we are up in the mountains, but then it is tough to dress because the sun really heats up the afternoons! One of the pictures is my cuate (dude/bro/man) Javiercito! He is a recent convert and Ana's brother, he comes with us to teach all the time, he is 15 and he is going to serve his mission in Seattle I know it! Oh also there is this cool thing called pouch apparently where the church like delivers mail. So I can like send a letter to any other missionary without postage, it will just get delivered so that's cool, and also they just take normal letters back to the US, so I need a lot of US forever stamps so that I can send letters, I only have one left! That's all for this week, I love and miss you all!!!
So scriptures for this week:
Dad John 5:19 thanks for your example!
Mom 3 John 1:11, everything good is of God!
Sam Proverbs 4:3 keep priorities in line, everything will get better, it is the knowledge that matters!
Jake- Deuteronomy 31:6-8 The Lord is always there for you!
Max Ephesians 6:1-2 Mom and Dad know best always remember that!