Monday, February 23, 2015

(WEEK 78) Otavalo City!

That's right! I know all of the mission now! (Coast, jungle, Quito, and the rest of the mountains)... Well, not Ibarra, but that's only 30 minutes away. The Quichua Book of Mormon that Elder Richimondg gave me about 15 months ago will finally be put to use haha. My sector is on the north part of the city. If you look up Plaza de Ponchos on the internet, my house is really close to that. I'm also really close to the bus terminal. So my sector is mostly the small tuorist city of Otavalo with a little bit of hills and farms, but not much. I've already seen a ton of forigners. I'm pumped to learn an indigeous language! Actualy to be honest, Quichua won't be 100% necesary. Out of the many many wards in Utah-valo (Utah plus Otavalo because almost everyone is a member!), only one ward speaks Spanish. And that's my ward haha. It's called the Latino ward. The rest of the wards in my zone and the neigboring zones have sacrament meeting and other church meetings entirely in Quichua. So I'll learn a little bit of the language, but I won't feel like a new missionary again and be forced to do it haha sweet! It was wierd to leave Quito after being there for about 11 months but I'm more than excited to be here.
My new companion is Elder Mazzarelli (Almost like the cheese). Even though that's an Italian last name (I think), he's from Chile which would make him my 3rd companion from Chile. (The others were Elder Santana and Elder Parra). He's from Santiago and has a heavy Chilean accent. Sometimes I have to listen carefully to understand him haha but he's awesome. I'm still a zone leader so it should be fun working in a zone outside of Quito with a leadership assignment. I have to adjust to a new sector again but I have faith that the Lord will help me. Plus it's fun starting from level one again. There's always a lot of funny things that happen. For example, my companion locked the keys in the house haha. So there's a good start. The good news is that that the owners, just like almost everyone else here, are members of the church. So they'll be able to let us in later. Oh, and the house has a guitar!! So I'll be jaming for the first time in 18 months.
I always have a terrible time thinking of what I did in the previous week after the changes. But I know that we have 5 soild people with baptimal dates for March in the sector. I'm going to have to talk with Elder Gallego in the mission councils to figure out their progress. On Monday and Tuesday due to the carnaval, we could only leave the house for set appointments. So there was a time where we had no set appointments, we play a ton of card games haha. On Tuesday there was an air strike. We almost got nailed with water balloons from the 4 story building. To that was terrifying haha. We saw the first balloon splatter right in front of us so but we could tell where it came from so we paniced and ran behind a car as the 2nd wave of balloons came. We left the battlefield bone dry! I thought we wree dead but like I said last week, there are angels around us haha.
So now the sisters of my group are return missionaries haha. Or at least they are in the offices right now and are going home in less than 24 hours. On Saturday we normally have family home evening nights. But This last Saturday it was Henderson home evening. Sister Henderson had members from her old ward (Cumbayá). Even the bishop came. They put up a slideshow and everything to say goodbye to Sister Henderson. She cryed too haha. The best part was, we figured out by the pictures that she mounted a horse in the mission hahahaha!!! In case you don't know, that's something a missionary cannot do at all. And we had evedence of the iniquity haha. Oviously there's nothing we can do now because she's already going home. But it was fun messing with her all Sunday long haha. I kept on making horse noises. Elder Gallego mounted me and I galloped around the chappel. We're still children haha.
Wow this letter's getting super long. Maybe I'll try to end the letters in Quichua soon but for now all you get is Spanish. Entonces, que pena. Ya envié la carta que tiene los registros de SUU. ¡También puse una foto de mí en la mitad del mundo y una de mis placas misionales! ¡Disfrutarán! Bueno, espero que tengan una semana buena y que todos estén bien. Me di cuenta de que ahora va a empezar March Madness. Entonces voy a jugar basquet todos los lunes para conmemorarlo jaja. ¡Advísenme de todo! ¡Les quiero mucho!

(WEEK 78) Otavalo City!

Monday, February 16, 2015

(WEEK 77)

So in Feburary every year Ecuador celebrates carnaval. Which is kind of a wierd holiday because the only thing that I noticed is that kids are out of school for 2 weeks for a 4 day holiday just to soak each other with water. So we've had to be very careful with waterballons and bickets of water on 2nd and 3rd story buildings haha.On Friday (One day before it ever started) these kids threw water ballons at us from the 3rd story haha. One went right by Elder Gallego's head and the other went right between Elder Bonola's feet. They kept on trying to get us but we never got hit haha. There are angles around us. God also played this year because on Saturday and and Sunday it rained a lot. I think he won.

On Monday we had the "Bonola" Split party in the mission house with Sister Richardson and it was sweet! There were like 4 giant tubs of ice cream and a ton of chocolate and caramel syurp. We're spoiled haha. I'll send a picture... It was Elder Bonola's birthday on Wednesday this week so we bought him Subway. Plus we bought him a cake on Thursday and we ate cake after the district meeting. On Tuesday we had divisions with the Nielsons (Elder Nielson and Elder Nielsen). I was with Elder Nielsen (He's like almost 7 feet tall, I though I was tall here...) and Elder Bonola. We walked a ton that day but we ended up having a good day and a nice reward at the end of the day. The stake president (Saenz) bought us 3 family sized boxes of Domino's Pizza. (Matthew 6:26). We also worked witht the sister missionaries in Pusuquí because they had problems with an investigator. But everything turned out good.

On Friday we had the interviews with president Richardson. He's awesome! He always shares great scriptures and knows how to uplift anyone. Plus the meeting was really good. We learned an effective way to get the members to work with us more in teaching investigators.

Hmm... What else happened... Oh yeah, so in the ward concils that we have every Sunday, there are always the presidents that are focused, and others that are not. For example, the elders quorum president was playing on his "doodle-pad" on his I-pad for the whole meeting. He drew a sun, a moon, a flower, the Salt Lake temple, the Batman symbol, and the Superman symbol. So that's nice.

¡Espero que tengas una buena semana! Ya firmé el registro de SUU. Ahora solo tengo que enviarlo. Voy a enviarlo el Jueves porque siempre tenemos la reunión de district los Jueves y por donde la capilla está tambièn los Correos De Ecuador. Me sentí rarísimo llenando los dos rigistros jaja pero bueno... Estoy feliz aquí en la misión. Presidente me dijo que los últimos seis meses son los meses que más voy a recordar de mi misión. Pero allí vamos viendo jaja. ¡Cuídense!

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

(WEEK 76) Bonola Split Party!

So I have a new companion. This is the 6th time that I've been put in a trio. I'm still in my same sector with Elder Gallego and our new companions name is Elder Bonola. He's from Veracruz, Mexico. My first Mexican companion! I love it because all he eats is hot stuff so today we went to Subway and he put a mountain of Jalapeños on his sandwich. He challenged me to do the same and I accepted it kicking and screaming. The mission president had to make some weird changes so he'll just be with us until the real changes (2 weeks). Today we won a banana split party! Whatever district that has all the latinos pass module 11 in the English exams, wins one. So in 2 hours we're going to the mission house which will only be the 4th time that I've been there. I'm excited!

On Tuesday we had the mission council and it was pretty good. President Richardson trained on exactly what the mission needed to hear. I love seeing all the ZLs every month... On Friday we had another meeting together with 3 other zones. It was the introduction to the interviews. Sadly, the real interviews will be this week on Friday. I was expecting for us to have them already. I don't know why I like the interviews so much but I do.

We have a Family Home Evening every Satuday night to help get the ward going and let the members and investigators be friends. They're really eficient! We always have about 50 people show up. We always play games as well. We played one game where you have to run as fast as you can and I biffed it in from of the whole ward with my companion hahaha. So my bruised hip has been hurting me but it's just another thing that makes me laugh. Saturday a family of recent converts moved from our sector to the other sector in Cotocollao. We helped them move yesterday but it was sad because they're awesome and now we won't see them as much. It was fun to help though. My companion and I had to pull up 4 couches to the roof of a 4 story building with just 2 ropes. They were insanely heavy haha. It was raining a little bit but I has still sweating trying to pull everything up. The hallways were way too small so that's why we did it. We had a couple of memebers to help us a little from the bottom too so that was nice.

I've ran out of things to say. Voy a terminar en Español de nuevo porque ya es como mi costumbre... ¡Gracias todos por su apoyo y amor! ¡Gracias también a mi papá por ayudarme registrar por SUU este año también! Aveces me parece que el día nunca va a llegar y que solo vivo como misionero jaja, pero realmente estoy muy agradecido por todo. ¡Espero que tengan una buena semana! Dee(2x), Yo todavía no en tenido mi entrevista pero cuando yo la tenga, le voy a decir lo que dice presidente. Gracias por su paciencia jaja. ¡Cuídense todos!

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

(WEEK 75) Spiritually and temporally fed

Where do I start... So this week Elder Craig Christensen from the presidency of the 70 came! That's right, PRESIDENCY of the 70. That's like almost apostol. He came and had just a 2 hour meeting with the ZLs and Sister leaders in Quito. So there were only like 20 missionaries there. Ït was a really short meeting but he talked about a ton of cool things. He talked about some of the profound things that he's witnessed with the coucil of the 12 meetings. And that whenever on of the apostoles says, "I feel..." That's when everyone pays atention and when the profound things come out. He talked about how we can know if The Lord has accepted our "offering" refering to missionary service too. He also shared a lot of personal experiences where he's seen many miracles in his life. It was a powerful meeting. And after that we got "The Sub of the Day" from subway (Cordon Bleu: $3). So we were happy.

Elder Nielson (From Montecello, Utah) from our zone got really really sick after the activity we had as a zone. He was literally shaking in the chappel. So we took him home with us while his companion was with his district leader. He stayed with us for 2 night because he got so sick. At our house Monday night he was literally shaking like a dog under 2 jackets and 2 blankets. Plus he was throwing up like every 20 minutes. He threw up lood twice. The mission nurse couldn't really help us so we called a doctor from the ward at like 11:00pm at night and he told us to make him soup. The soup was terrible haha all we had were old noodles and salt. But we made him drink that masterpiece and after like 36 hours we cured him. We dropped him off with his companion Wednesday before lunch. He was so grateful that we "momed" him while he was sick that he tried to give us $40 when we saw him on Thursday for the district meeting. We obiously couldn't accept it but that was kind of fun freaking out in the house trying to cure him. All worked out in the end haha.

On Friday my companion and I gave, I think, one of the best trainings we've ever given together. It was just for the district leaders and their companions for the leadership meeting and we based the talk on President Ezra Taft Benson's talk: "Beware of Pride". The Spirit just lit the room. Plus the way that everyone participated doubled the spirit in there. I can't really discribe it but it was unforgetable for me. Plus we had one of the more powerful contacts together on Wednesday. We just taught lesson 1: The Restoration, but we didn't even feel like we were speaking. Everything just went so naturally...

Aparte de eso, comimos comida buenísima toda la semana. En serio, tosas las momitas nos dieron bastante comida, y estoy seguro que la comida fue comida de los ángeles... La comida aquí por lo general es buena pero esta semana comimos como dioses. Oh, y también hoy jugamos bolos (Bowling) en el Quicentro. Elder Wheelwright y yo logramos el puntaje m'as alto (106). Fue chistoso porque empezamos malísimo pero al final tuvimos un Pavos (Turkeys) (I doubt that's how it's translated haha). Les quiero mucho y espero que disfruten la semana.

(WEEK 75)