Thursday, December 16, 2010

New Companion!

December 15, 2010

Dear Family and Friends,

DANG JENA! That’s all I have to say about this week because so much has happened and it has blown my mind! It’s all good though because I’m not stressing, I’m just trying to take it all in, and let me explain to you what I’m talking about! I’ll start out by saying why my mind is blown and I have to man up and work harder than I ever have before. In Spanish they call manning up, Ponte trucha, which I think is slang for It’s time to wake up! But when someone isn't manning up out here and doing what they are supposed to do we tell them to Ponte Trucha.

Well anyway, let me begin. Last Monday was transfers and I got a brand new companion named Elder White that just came from the English speaking side of the mission! He is from a tiny town called Elsinore, Utah. He is a thug; he is about 6'3 and has the deepest voice you've ever heard! All in all, he is the man. Well I have been out here for about 6 weeks now and I have been pretty much letting my companion Elder Hansen figure everything out, and he would also teach a lot of the lessons since I’m not fluent in Spanish yet( I’m almost there). Anyway, Elder White has been out for 9 months and most of the time he has been English speaking so he doesn’t speak as much Spanish as I do. He is also new to the area so I have to call the shots for now. So no longer can I let my companion take control, I have to, especially in the lessons with investigators. It has been tough though, I’m not playing.

Elder Hansen transferred Monday and left me to figure out everything for myself not to mention there is this whole language difference. These last two days have been really hard because my boy named Godofredo, he is about 70, is getting baptized tonight! Elder Hansen left me with all the planning to do for Godofredo's baptism so I had to get everything set up for it. I had to get the program ready for one of the members to make, verify who was giving the talks at the baptism, and call the guy who is filling up the font. Well you get the point. It has been tough because I’m calling the shots and I’m pretty new at this. But I haven’t said why me? Why in my 6th week in the mission field do I have a companion that isn’t fluent, or why couldn’t I get one that is fluent that can help me more with the language. All I know is that I was put with Elder White so I could man up, stop sitting back and letting other people do the planning, and PONTE TRUCHA. Chyeah! Anyway, I know the Lord has done this so I can grow and progress faster. It is hard, but I need to do my thing and work harder!

Anyway, like I said, my boy Godofredo is getting baptized tonight and we are all extremely happy. One of the members of the Branch named Mario (Papa) Andrade is baptizing him since they are good friends. Mario Papa is the man, he is about 70 also, and he has the deepest voice that you have ever heard and he is like a big bear. He is the older brother of the President of the Rama (Branch), Presidente Andrade. Anyway I hope everything goes according to plan tonight since it is the first baptism I’ve been a part of so far!

I like that Mom is getting the girls nativity sets for Christmas, that’s pretty tight. I know when I have a wife one day, we will need a pretty nice nativity set too so don’t forget us. But I have to tell you something G, there are some pretty good looking girls out here, but every time I see one, in my mind I think, Dang Son work harder and Ponte Trucha and my wife is going to be sweeter than all these girls! Chyeah!

Did you get my Christmas cards? If you did, can you send them to people that you think would like them, I gave you a list but do your thing. Give one to my boy Brother Sowards, I love that guy!

Don’t worry about the MTC pictures that got lost in the mail; I’ll get those from my MTC buddies after their missions. They are pretty busy I’m sure and don’t have time to worry about sending pictures just like me. One P-day is definitely not enough time to get everything done but I’m trying. All the pictures of the MTC were of just a bunch of dudes. After my mission I can try to reconnect with my friends and get those pictures back but for now I’m going to send you a disc that has all my pictures I have taken from the mission on it!

Well our area is doing really awesome! We have been inviting everyone we teach to be baptized and setting dates for them so they have a goal to strive for. We now have 5 people with baptismal dates and I’m really excited about that. Charlie has a baptismal date for the 25th on Christmas. He is an awesome guy that has had a rough life. He has been listening to the missionaries for 2 years now but he finally feels ready to enter into the waters of baptism. We are so excited for him and so is his wife Miriam who was baptized about 5 months ago. She is so excited she bought me and Elder Hansen ties ha-ha! Another investigator that we have that has a baptismal date is Enrique. He is the man and I have been teaching him since I got here in November. He believes the Church is true but the only thing that is stopping him from progressing is he works Sundays and can’t get them off. We have been fasting and praying for him and I hope he will be able to have Sundays free. We set the baptismal date so he could have a goal to shoot for. We have another investigator named Pedro Rendon. He is really tight and has accepted everything we have taught him with an open heart. He also works on Sundays and this is a problem so we are continuing to pray for this and he is as well. Our last investigator is Anna Cisneros and she accepted a baptismal date for the 18th of January. We have only taught her twice so we will have to see how things go. She has the desire to come closer unto Christ and this is the way how, through faith, repentance, baptism, and enduring to the end. We have a couple other investigators as well like my Boy Elvis and his wife Crystal. Elvis always invites us over to talk with him. I have good feelings about him but we will have to see what happens. He is a really nice guy who always offers us food when we come over. He also accepted baptism when he finds out for himself that what we are teaching is true.

Now I will explain to you why I think the Lord has confidence in me. The last two days have been really hard cause I haven’t had my trainer Elder Hansen to do all the work that I didn’t know how to do yet, not to mention he would help me out with the language since he is fluent. Now my new companion is Elder White. He is the man and we are getting along really well. The only problem is I’m not fluent in the language yet and neither is he. I know a little more Spanish than he does and it’s pretty tough because now I have to lead in teaching most of the lessons. Plus I had to plan for a baptism for tonight. I don’t want it to sound like I’m whining because I’m not. It has just made me think that, the Lord has to have confidence in me to put me with someone that doesn’t speak the language that well. I really wanted a fluent Spanish speaking companion like Elder Rivera or Rangel so I could take my time and practice my Spanish with them but I didn’t get one. But after I got Elder White as my companion I realized, I don’t need to have faith in myself and the fact that I could learn the language myself by practicing with a native speaking Elder, I need to have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ that He will further bless me with this language if I am obedient and do the best I can. Things are going really great here and I’m loving it, like I said, it has been pretty tough these last couple of days, but I know the Lord wouldn't give me this responsibility if he didn't think I could do it. But I can, and I will, because I’m not a scrub, Chyeah! That is what I have received from this new transfer and I will do my part to improve the language and my ability to lead and I have the faith that the Lord will help me.

Well, let me think if anything funny happened this week. My new companion has one of the deepest voices I’ve ever heard and yesterday we met with one of the members named Mario Papa Andrade (he is an old guy from Mexico that is like a big bear). He also has one of the deepest voices you have ever heard. So when Mario Papa started talking to my companion he noticed that he had a deep voice too. So then we had to see who had a deeper voice and Mario won ha-ha, he said that he had a deeper voice because he had GRIPA (I think that means a cold). So it was funny to see them go back and forth talking, trying to see who had a deeper voice. Choir practice was pretty funny too since it consists of like 9 members of the Branch. Everyone tries hard but there are only a few that really know how to sing. So during choir practice after Church, it is pretty funny hearing everyone try to hit their notes and sing their parts! We are just making a joyful noise really.

Well I have lots of work to do so I will let you go. The gospel is true!

Merry Christmas!