Sunday, August 31, 2014

August 18, 2014

Paysandú is so awesome! Every week it just seems to be getting better and better! This past week went great!

On Tuesday we had zone capacitation where we learned a lot about being obedient, to make sacrifices, and to consecrate ourselves more to the obra. And that night I went on divisiones with Elder Gamarra. He is from my group! We had a great day working in his area and learned a lot from each other. 

Elder Marín and I have been working a lot better together. We started off this change with different levels de animo but now we are on the same page. We are getting rid of all the beliefs that we had about our area and are starting all new. We took on the mentality that we are opening area. The entire attitude has changed in our companionship and we have been seeing miracles. We found 3 new families to teach this past week!! aaahhhh! We are so happy. 

One we found when we went out with the bishop to work in our area. We were looking for a family in a part of our area so we just started asking around. It was the familia Rodriguez, a name super common. But we just knocking doors and people would kind of guide us to where it was. We knocked one house and a lady came out and we asked her and she said that her husband was Rodriguez. So we started talking about the gospel and the family out in front of her gate. And then we asked if we could pass by and share a little bit more. She started talking about how she only had one room in her house and that there was no place to sit, etc. and then our bishop just goes "what do you mean there is no where to sit? There are two chairs out in front of your house right there. That is more than sufficient. We don’t come for your house, we come to save your soul." no joke. Those were his exact words. And then she goes, "seguro? pasen" (okay come in). So there we were sitting in front of her house at 830 at night with 6 people and 3 chairs. Me and my comp went half and half with our chair, bishop had his own, and she had her own with her children. Turns out that her daughter was baptized a few years back. She was going to church with her husband and stopped after they moved. We had such a great lesson and set up to go back this coming week. When we got up, I almost fell right over because my entire right leg was asleep ha-ha. But it was well worth it. 

Then the other night we went out and found another family where the 2 of the kids got baptized and the rest of the family no. the whole family was going to church and then they just stopped. we don’t really know why but when we went back to the house the missionaries before kept a great area book and found out that they were waiting to get married, and that was 8 months ago so they should be married already! The mom in the lesson was sharing her testimony of what the elders had taught before. Aaaahh it was so awesome! 

Then we found Santiago and his family! We were teaching in the house of a member the past week and their son (Santiago) was in the lesson. We talked about faith and repentance and he really liked it so he invited us to go to his house and teach his family as well! We went this past week and have set up to go back on tomorrow!! 

This week has honestly been the best week I have had in Paysandú. And it all changed with our attitude. Once we changed it, repented, and went out to work with all we have, our area is showing us that there is so much to do! Everyone we are teaching right now is progressing. We are finding new people. The members are excited to get out to work. 

Everything is changing! We are so stoked on life right now. Working harder than ever and seeing the blessings. 

My spiritual thought for this week comes from President Spencer W. Kimball--

“I remind you … that regardless of your present age, you are building your life; … it can be full of joy and happiness, or it can be full of misery. It all depends upon you and your attitudes, for your altitude, or the height you climb, is dependent upon your attitude or your response to situations”

I have such a testimony of this. And it got a lot bigger this past week working in Ombú. Every thing starts and ends with your desire and your attitude. We have overcome so many difficulties in our area this past week just by changing our attitude. I encourage you all to try it. If life seems to be going rough, take a minute and take a look at your attitude. I promise you that it will change! 

I know that the church is true. I know that Christ lives. He knows us personally and loves each and every one of us. If we give over to Him our weaknesses, He will make them strong! Give your best and leave the rest up to Him. 

Lets all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better this week! 

Get out there and share your testimony!!!

I love you all so much!

UN abrazo grande, 

Elder Staffieri

Las Fotos:
Choripan y omnibus.
Lunch pails that a member gave us with dinner from national y uruguay.
Elder marín y yo en our room
The missionaries of Ombú : Elder Marin y yo, hernama Risco y hermana Silva
Sending in the logros
The paysandu grafiti
Lunch with the apartment y young.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

August 11, 2014

Okay. I have ten minutes. Ready! GGOOO!!

Okay this week has been awesome! I am getting to know my area more and we are finally finding more people to teach! whhoooppp whoop! This week we have been working a lot on talking all the time in the streets. It’s basically impossible to talk to everyone so we are just focusing on never stopping talking to people when we are in the streets. And we are seeing the results! It’s been a super cool experience.

This past week we went down to concilio in Montevideo! It went great. President Smith taught us a ton about obedience, sacrifice, and consecration (idk if I spelled that right) which is exactly what the mission needs right now. We are so excited to capacitate the zone about it tomorrow. It’s going to change a lot up here! But then after he taught about that he basically gave us all the time to talk about our zones and what is going on and to form a plan on how we are going to get better. He told us that we are going to take responsibility of basically everything that has to do with our zone. It’s awesome but kind of scary at the same time. He told us that the assistant’s aren’t going to travel with him anymore and that he is going to work a lot more through us. So that is going to be algo different but it’s going to help us a lot. It is going to make us really own Paysandú! 

We started practicing more for the charla foganera this week too! We have some really talented elders and hermanas. It’s going to be awesome! 

This week we were in a tripanionship with Elder Carreño. His corto plazo had to go back home to study so we went out with us to work for a day. It was actually really fun working with 3. Usually it’s a lot harder but it went great. 

This Sunday I gave a talk in sacrament meeting about missionary work. It was supposed to only be 10 minutes but the sisters left me with 30 to speak...haha. I did the best I could. It actually went really well and we have more members to go out with us this week! Blessings!! We have been working a lot to gain the confidence of the members and of the stake presidency. That has been the biggest desafio that we have had I think. But with visits and leaving with them, things are slowly beginning to change. 

Miracle of the week! An ex bishop that we have been teaching for a while finally came to church!! yyyeeessss!! Smiles all around on Sunday when we saw him there! I wish I had more time to explain a little bit more. 

Spiritual thought of the week: 

Quote from Elder Ballard that we learned in concilio--"The act of baptism itself doesn’t wash sin away. Thanks to the Atonement, the effects of sin depart when someone keeps their baptismal covenant faithfully to follow the Lord Jesus Christ."

Let’s all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better this week!

I love you all! Thank you for all of your support! 

UN abrazo grande, 

Elder Staffieri

las fotos: 
The missionaries of Paysandú y the stake presidency. 
The elders and sisters of my group who were at concilio (elder toledo, elder caires franca, yo, hermana simpson, hermana fullmer, hermana toone, y hermana mazzini)
Traveling to concilio with chaja (elder marín, yo, hermana valverde, hermana simpson)
Elder de la cruz: the new secretary!! whoop whoop! I lived with him in Artigas
Taking a mattress from the hermanas house to give it to the elders who came in from young.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

August 04, 2014

This is going to be a short one! The cyber we are in is not really funcionando. I have tried to send emails over and over again and they just won’t send so I have to start over and now I only have about 10 minutes. Sorry if this wont be as detailed as you’d like but at least its something right? Ha-ha

Well changes!! Crazy as usual! Went to the bus station and my ticket wasn’t there and the tickets of the other missionaries tampoco. So we went over to the zone leader house and decided to rent a bus to go down to Montevideo because that was where everyone was going. When the "bus" showed up, it turned out to be a van. Ha-ha. We decided to put the missionaries that needed to go down si o si that night in the van and bought bus tickets for the other elders the next day. The first time doing changes by myself in the mission because no other missionaries were going to where i was going. haha. But everything went awesome. I ended up leaving Wednesday morning at 6 am to salto, bought another ticket going from salto to paysandu. Got into paysandu at about 1 in the afternoon, dropped my bags in the church, went to lunch, and then headed back to the terminal to greet and send off missionaries the rest of the night. A ton of missionaries pass through paysandu on their way to other zones. So it was cool. We got to see a lot of our friends in the mission. 

So our house is basically a mansion!!! It is the entire floor of an apartment building on the main street of paysandu! Its ssoo legit! We live as 6. I am the only english speaker in the house. The rest are latinos and one brasilero. It’s a pretty fun house. And the best part! 3 bathrooms! Whoop whoop! 

The zone is awesome. I am here with 4 missionaries from my group: Elder Hansen, Hermana Simpson, Elder Gamarra, y Elder Mendoza. It’s such a blast. 

Working this past week was a blast! I am getting to know the area and all the members and investigators here so my head kind of spins at times ha-ha. But it’s all part of the fun. 

Elder Marin and I go to the bishop’s council meeting with the president of the stake and the bishops. We had an awesome meeting last Friday and we talked about all the wards and the missionaries and how we can help the wards to grow. Then yesterday night we had a meeting with all the missionaries in the zone and pte damiano and his councilors. It went great! Everyone is pumped and we have the support of the whole stake presidency, the bishops, and a ton of the members.

Okay sorry! I have to go! Time is up! I love you all! Thanks for everything you do to support me out here and the missionaries in your wards and stakes. 

Get out there and share your testimony!

Lets all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better! 

UN abrazo grande, 

Elder Staffieri 

Sunday, August 10, 2014

July 29, 2014

Family and friends! Sorry this email is going to be really short and quick. I have 20 min to get in and out and I still have to write president. So sorry! But I will write more next week I promise! 

This past week has been sooo amazing. Aaahh. It was so great. I wish I had time to write about everything that has happened but no da para hacerlo. asi que vamos a hacerlo rápido! I am just going to talk about the big things that happened this week! 

On Thursday, we were with a family where I gained my testimony that the Lord puts the right words in your mouth in the right time. aahh. It’s crazy how one phrase can change a lesson! 

On Friday, we went out working with president smith! He was up in Artigas for the ensayo for the charla foganera and went out with us on Friday night! And it was sooo amazing! We learned so much and saw some miracles. In the lesson with Jose y Mariana we finally got them to commit to get married and president was like, "okay, tomorrow we are going to come by at 10 and we are going to go take out your wedding date!" haha. They had been really hesitant to get married because they didn’t have money for a big party after but after they understood the doctrine, they realized that it was more important to get right with God than wait for a big party. So the next morning, president lent us his car and we went and picked them up and took out fecha! We were their four witnesses! THEY WILL GET MARRIED ON THE 12TH OF SEPTEMBER!!! AAAHHHHHH!!! HOW AWESOME IS THAT??!!! They were so dang happy leaving the court house place. aaahh! One of the happiest days I have had here in Artigas! 

Saturday, we had the charla foganera here in Artigas with our choir of missionaries and testimonies of all the recent converts and then president smith and pte bueno spoke. fffaaaaa!! The spirit was sooo strong. Everyone loved it. Then right after we left for salto to go do it again on Sunday. I went and slept in my old house and went to church there. I was comps with Elder El-Bakri just like the good old ccm days!! aaahhh we had such a blast. And it was great to go to church and visit all the people I was teaching before I left salto! We ate lunch with Silvia and had some great visits with members, etc. then we had the charla foganera there! And again! The spirit was so strong. I felt really blessed to be able to do it in artigas and salto, two of the zones in the mission that I love most. It was really special. 

On Saturday, pte gave us all our changes and I am leaving Artigas. To be honest, it is going to be really hard to leave. I leave here in 4 hours. Yesterday I was making a lot of visits and aah it was so hard. In my past 6 months here I have grown to love everyone come si fuera mi familia. I felt like an hermana yesterday when I got emotional in a lesson haha. but ya fue. I am going to miss this place so much but I am so excited to be going to PAYSANDÙ!! And to be honest a little bit nervous. pte smith told me that I will be going as zone leader. It was very humbling for me and it will be a new challenge this mission. But my comp is such a stud. His name is elder Marin. I worked with him in oeste. He is such a great missionary and I am looking forward to learning from him and for the opportunity we have to serve all the missionaries in Paysandu. It’s going to be great! 

I am a little bummed too to be leaving mi hijo, elder Vasquez. But I am so proud of him. In these past 3 months of his training, he has totally changed. He is a completely different missionary now than what he was when he came in. elder trucolo is coming in my lugar. He is a stud and is going to help out barrio 4 a ton! 

Sorry that this was kind of rushed and thrown together. But I have got to go and finish packing, make a visit or two and get on my bus! I love you all so much! Next week I’ll send some pictures and stuff! 

Let’s all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better. 

I love you all!

Un abrazo grande, 

Elder Staffieri

Friday, August 1, 2014

July 21, 2014

This past week has been incredible! We are working a ful in our area and being blessed abundantly. 

This past Tuesday, we had a great district / zone meeting. We reflected on the interviews and capacitation we had with president and his call unto repentance. So in district meeting, we talked about repentance and the doctrine of repentance for us as missionaries and for those we teach. I shared some experiences that Elder Vasquez y yo tuvimos that changed my mission and challenged them all to do the same. The Spirit was there and it was just awesome! Then after wards, we had a humbling zone meeting. We all did a rendicion de cuentas in front of the whole zone companionship by companionship in the stake center on a giant projector after the worst week Artigas has had as a zone. It was awesome. We all took responsibility of what happened in our areas the last week and took it upon ourselves to improve. AND THIS PAST WEEK!!! oh did we improve!! And the district too! wwwwwwooooowwww. It was incredible. I think I had one of the happiest moments as a district leader in my mission so far! Seeing the progress of all the companionships in my district and all their desires to get even better!!aaaahh! Nothing could be better. So we are all way pumped to give even more. 

After the changes we made last weekend, we have noticed a huge difference in our area. We have been working with more members, finding a whole lot more (found a new family of 6 this past week!!! :) ), our ward is a lot more animated, our companionship has been strengthened, the spirit is here more, etc. it’s just been going off in our area! 

This past week we had a choque de fuerza with our ward too! This is when we all meet up at the church as a ward and go out to visit menos activos and knock doors and stuff! I went out with the bishop and second councilor. It was awesome. We went and visited an old bishop who had gone inactive, and a 3 other inactive families. We had a really great experience Saturday night and then on Sunday, we saw the results! A full chapel! aaahhhhh!! I haven’t seen our ward that full in over 5 months! It was truly amazing! All the members are so excited now to get out and work! 

Also, a first on my mission, I played the piano in sacrament meeting. After what I thought was 5 years of piano lessons without learning anything except up on the housetop turned out to be false. Over the course of my mission, I have been teaching myself how to play again little by little. haha. And now I can play. Well mas o menos. I know how to read music and this past week I was practicing and I played in sacrament meeting. It was pretty fun. The ward appreciated it. So thank you mom for taking me all the way to Rancho Bernardo every week to take lessons when I was 7 years old. I am now seeing the results at 20 hahaha. 

Well sorry! That is all the time I have for this week! I love you all so much ! Thank you for your thoughts and prayers! 

Let’s all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better this week! 

Pray for oportunidades to share your testimony! 

UN abrazo grande, 

Elder  Staffieri