Sorry it has been so long but its been a busy week and a half. We have been working like crazy and enjoying every minute of it.
My last week in Argentina was soo awesome. Janet got baptized on the 29th. She was so excited and was soo happy. She even came to do service at the church with the branch a few hours before her baptism and worked all the way up till when we changed. And on Sunday, elder Minert, confirmed her a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and gave her the gift of the Holy Ghost. There is no better way to leave an area. That area is going to explode. There are more with baptismal dates and the members are really excited!! I am going to miss that place a whole ton. Then on Sunday, there weren’t any buses so I took a taxi into Paysandú (an hour and a half ride in taxi) which cost a pretty penny. Got to Paysandú and then left at 4:30 in the morning on Monday. Got in at 9 and went to work!
I have come to appreciate how much work the assistants in the past have done. I didn’t really quite understand how much it was until I got here. Ha-ha. My new companion is Elder Huerta from Santiago, Chile. He is such a stud. We were buddies before I got here and I got to know him pretty well when we were doing the charla fogoneras in salto and Artigas. He is one of the best teachers I know and I am super excited to get the chance to learn with him. We didn’t get that much of a chance to work in our area this past week because we were in the mission home most of the week with the new missionaries and the missionaries that were going home. I don’t think I have ever gone to the airport so much in my entire mission. We went like 5 times in 3 days. But I feel so blessed because I have been learning sooo much from president Smith. From the trainings he gives to the new missionaries, to the counsel he gives to those who are going home, even in simple meetings we have, it is always such an enlightening experience.
I had one of the coolest and most unique experiences of my mission on Thursday. President Smiths daughter left on her mission on Thursday and she was going to get set apart in their house that evening. Their stake president only speaks spanish so president Smith asked me to translate it and whisper it to her as she was getting set apart. It was so special for Elder Huerta and I to be able to share that moment with the Smith family. The Spirit was felt so strongly and I learned so much from their stake president. I am so grateful to have such great local leaders and to know that they are truly inspired and that they receive revelation for those who live within their stake. It made me reflect back on when President Ham set me apart and I was overcome with gratitude that there are men worthy to set young men and women apart as representatives of Jesus Christ to share His Restored Gospel.
Well, yesterday was the first real day when we got to work in our area and it was so awesome!! The people we are teaching are so prepared!! Cerro is Zion!! We are teaching a woman named Maria. Maria is 55 years old and has been searching for the true church for years. She has been with about every church that I have heard of but she told us that what she feels when she reads the Book of Mormon has been so different and she feels like what we teach is true. She is so smart and knows soo much. She is going to be a fantastic member of the church. Also we taught a man named Hector. Hector actually contacted the missionaries a few months back because he wanted to practice his english. He is about 65 and knows a ton of english. The lesson we had with him was kind of interesting. He brought brochures that he had in english and an envelope that he had with guitar strings and asked me to translate them into spanish so that he could learn. Ha-ha. Then after we talked a little bit about that we began to read the Book of Mormon in English. He didn’t really seem to interested because he believes that the Bible has all of the truth and that it is all we need to be saved. We began to testify, in both english and spanish, of the truthfulness and importance of the Book of Mormon. We explained what happened in the apostasy and how simple truths were removed and/or changed from the bible but that the Book of Mormon contains the fullness of the Gospel. We taught of the ministry of Jesus Christ in the Americas and of the prophets that He called to testify of His coming. It was awesome!! Hector totally opened up! He began to ask questions and to become really interested. It was kind of a long lesson, but it was worth it!
Today we had a great pday. We woke up early to go and have personal study in this cool forest preserve that they have in Montevideo. Then went and explored Montevideo a little bit and bought a ton of fruit in the street market for super cheap. Took some awesome pictures. And tonight jerry (president’s son) is going to come out and work with us. So we have to get going right now.
I love you all so much. Thank you for all you do and for all of your prayers in my behalf. They are felt in a huge way.
Lets all try a little bit harder to be a little bit better!
Have a great week and share your testimony with all those you can!!
Un abrazo grande,