Monday, October 15, 2012

The work goes forth by small and simple things

I love my family, día 496, Week 71,

I love you! Each week is always full of adventures and I love sharing the experiences that I have with you. I never know at the beginning of the week the adventures that await me. This week, as all weeks seem to seem was full of crazy stuff. I feel like I've awkwardly rambled here in the introduction grasping for some way to start out the letter. I'll just write it.

Monday night we had a Noche de Hogar with Alfredo and Belkis (baptized by Elder Cotton) and Celeste and her two children. It was awesome. We watched the story of Parley P. Pratt as shown in The Book of Mormon, How Rare a Possession. It was awesome. I love sharing the Book of Mormon with everyone. We then had a quick visit with Andrea, a contact that we made about 2 weeks into the area and who we've taught on and off the whole time. She's finally starting to realize the read, pray, feel good, get baptized process. I suppose that everyone has their time. Maybe we just asked the right questions or she just put things together, but anyways, we feel that something has changed that will allow her to progress and obtain an answer to the “Is the true?” question.

Tuesday we spent a bit of time planning our taller de zona that we'd have Friday. We really love our zone. The Elders (and Hermanas) are working hard, mostly obedient, all get along, and work. They are worth it! Since I got here and cleaned up the missionaries' act there hasn't been any serious problems with obedience since then. We've received great missionaries. Tuesday there was an interesting change in the normal flow of the day. In the afternoon we were very busy and in the night we were struggling a bit. I must share with you a contact that we did. It was one of the hardest rejections that we've had! A man was walking up the staircase where we were and upon presenting ourselves I started to tell him how much our Father in Heaven loves us and how Jesus came to the Old World and as soon as I said that Jesus also visited the Americas, before I could get in another word in he started walking away repeating, “Repent! Repent, so you don't burn in hell” Repent!” At that point we sort of just stood with mouths open a little bewildered. But then we carried on. He just wasn't ready to listen just yet. One thing that I've discovered is that I love teaching unemployed people or work-at-home people. They're always there! So we usually choose to visit them in the afternoons, usually the slowest part of the day. We were able to visit and confirm this weekend's baptisms with Celeste and her daugher Paola, and Danelia, a reference from a member.

Wednesday we made a quick run to the office to grab the digital copy of Facing the Giants to use in our taller. We spent the morning putting together clips for the taller. We included clips from that movie, a clip called Small and Simple Things made by a North Carolina Mission (you could find it), a clip about an Indian kid getting the entire street to help push a fallen tree out of the road letting traffic flow freely, and the Mormon Message by Jeffrey R. Holland,A Testimony of the Book of Mormon. We had a good time putting that together. We love our missionaries. Our day was a bit slow in the afternoon. Other than Celeste and Danelia not too much happened. We did however have an awesome visit with the slowly, but surely progressing German and Angela. We hadn't passed in like 3 weeks because they've been busy but they went to conference last week and have been reading the Book of Mormon. Slowly, slowly, but surely. We've yet to get them to a sacrament meeting and we're a bit worried because they've been spoiled by concerts and conferences and haven't really seen what the church is like every week. The comforting fact is that if they keep reading and throw a few prayers in there they'll eventually get to church.

Thursday was a fun day! We had interviews with Presidente, always a privelege. A new adventure was house inspections! We went with Hermana Hernandez and one of the APs (the more capable one) to inspect the houses of our zone and update the medical kits. So we spent most of the day with them. It was fun. We went along because we're the only ones who know the houses of the zone. I have a testimony that Sister Hernandez receives revelation too. She suggested that various Elders change houses for various reasons and it turned out that the majority of them were already in the process of looking. She is a great missionary. She invited our neighbor of downstairs, who we've tried to get to church, and this Sunday she actually came! Sister Hernandez is awesome. We got back to the office and worked on a card that we made for the Elders and Sisters (see the attached photo). Then finally we got back home. The power went out right as we got in and that didn't help us get out to work at night... so when the power came back on we got one visit done.

Friday we had our Taller de Zona. It was awesome. I think that it was our best one yet. We taught well together. I focused on Small and Simple things (Alma 37:6-7) and my companion focused on not being afraid. We watched the videos above mentioned and gave out the cards to the zone then went out to eat. We love them! Right after the lunch we got one of our baptismal interviews taken care of. We then ran over to the office to pick up some baptismal clothes we needed and then got back here to work. It was a low-key day. The coolest thing that happend was a contact that we did. After trying to visit Andrea we went to buy juice from a pulpería and a guy started talking to us in English. He is a permanent resident of the U.S. And has lived there for the past 30 years. He is super awesome and seems interested in receiving us. He did ask that we get materials in english because he reads it better. We were fine on that! It'll be the first time that I teach in english. We'll see how that goes.

Saturday we took care of our other interview and ran to borrow more baptismal clothes from another zone. The day was very slow. We filled up the font. It appears that rain water got into the cistern because the water came out a gross color. We just did some contacting and tried getting a hold of old investigators.

Sunday morning we had the baptismal service before church started. Danelia, Celeste and Paola got baptized. It was awesome. The Lord gives us miracles when we need them most. Celeste was also a contact from the first week of being in the area. This is about the 3rd time that we're teaching her. But until this time she came to church and was there for our appointments. Her hubsand was killed about a year and a half ago and in his backpack, which was on him at the time of his death, there was a Book of Mormon, so she's had interest, before it just wasn't her time. They were also legally married so she can go to the temple within a year to be sealed to him with her kids. Sunday after church we met with the stake presidency and Presidente Hernandez to talk about the missionary work in the zone/stake. The next big scheme that we have is a baptismal service including 3 (maybe all 4) stakes in our mission's half of the city. That'd be cool. We visited a few people and had dinner at the Zuniga's house to finish the day.

I love being a missionary. I love my family so much! I am so blessed to have your contant support and love. Time is truly flying.

Love you so much!

Elder Clay

p.s. Mommy, I tried taking more pictures this week!  

making my own burgers!

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