Monday, July 8, 2013

2013-07-08 It turns out even a low power taser is plenty strong…

Hey Everyone,

I had another wonderful week.  I feel really good about the way everything is going for us here in our area.  I really don’t want to leave the area at cambios but I’m afraid I might.  That kind of surprises me because before the mission I thought I would want to be in as many areas as possible but I love it here and love the ward and I’ll be sad when I leave.

Tasers are inexpensive and easy to get here so lots of people have them.  We were with a family and they had a really low powered taser so I let Elder Chavez try it on my arm.  It turns out that even a low power taser is plenty strong…

We went to the temple this Tuesday and I loved it.  I really miss going to the temple.  I understood everything this time which is a major improvement from the last time I went in Lima.  It actually reminds me a lot of the Mt. Timpanogos temple inside.  My companion from the CCM Elder Laidlaw was there too so it was fun to be able to talk to him a little.

I guess that Bolivia and the US government aren’t on the best of terms right now.  They decided to have anti-US protests on the 4th of July so the Americans were only allowed to leave the house to eat at the pensionistas’ in street clothes.  My companion went with Elder Chavez’s companion so they could go to both of our appointments.  We got 2 cakes to celebrate. Elder Crankshaw and I sang the national anthem and we watched 3 episodes of The District during the day.  It was a pretty awesome day and I got to spend the day with Elders Crankshaw and Chavez so that was a lot of fun.

with Elder Crankshaw eating their 4th of July cake 

Yesterday we had way too many appointments to visit so we went on splits with 2 of the priests from the ward. I went with Arturo Flores.  The Flores family are year old converts and my favorite family to visit here.  It was really fun going with Arturo and it made me feel really good about my Spanish. He said almost nothing so I had to do all of the talking and it turned out well.  I can finally speak in Spanish without having to think about what I want to say in English first.  One of our appointments fell through so we knocked doors instead.  We walked by a door and a block later I was still thinking about it so we went back to knock and found 2 awesome new investigators.  They have a cousin who is a member of the church and serving a mission in Uruguay right now. They are both very interested in religion in general and are looking to find a church to join.  They said they were busy cleaning up their house and didn’t have time to listen to us right now so we offered to help and they said sure. They didn’t actually have anything for us to do so we just stood and chatted for a few minutes while they hosed down the tile floor around their house.  Since we weren’t doing anything I asked if we could teach while they cleaned and they agreed and we taught about the restoration for an hour. Arturo didn’t say a word the entire time so I felt really good that I understood everything they said to me and was able to make it through the whole hour.  They both want to come to church this week. Our next lesson after that went just as well.  We visited the Gonzalez family which I’ve been teaching since I got here.  We had a wonderful spiritual lesson and at the end invited them to be baptized. They aren’t married yet so they know they have to do that first.  They finally said yes and are getting their papers together for their marriage and should be able to get baptized 2 months from now. I’m really excited for them.  There is a mom, dad, and 4 kids.  The hardest part about missionary work here is finding entire families who are all interested together.
Market where Elder Howlett finally found an avocado--a huge one!
The Flores family is great.  The mom told me this morning that Arthur really loved going out to teach with me. That really felt good because he is kind of a rebel and is always having problems.  We had some good talking while we were walking between appointments.  His mom said he came home and told her he’d miss her when he goes on a mission.  He told her he’s sure that he wants to go as soon as he graduates.  So that was a pretty incredible change from not really wanting to go before (he’s 16 and will graduate right when he turns 18).  Also the reason I talked to her this morning is because she has a washer and offered to wash my clothes for free! They are the best and are making me pizza for when we go to do a family home evening with them tonight. Sister Flores is also taking her vacation days on Sunday now so that she can go to church.  Her husband and she are planning to go to the temple in September to be sealed.

Everywhere we go, people continue to feed us.  This week right after dinner we went to visit Manuel (blind) and they were just having dinner so his wife served us some soup.  I was already stuffed and honestly didn’t think I could get the soup down.  I ate a bite of the chicken in the soup and then lifted the whole thing out of the soup and realized it was a chicken foot.  Luckily, he is blind and I put it in my companion’s bowl.  Then when we’d finished the soup she brought out this massive plate of pasta for each us with a mushed beat sauce.  It was absolutely terrible and I have no idea how I ate it all.  I don’t think I’ve ever been so full in my life.

Testimony meeting here is the best, way better than at home.  As soon as they invite people to come to the pulpit 20 people stand up and all walk up at once.  Everyone here understands what a testimony is and gives short powerful testimonies rather than the story of their life.  I love testimony meeting.

We found a family of 11 this week who are all very interested and I’m very excited to keep teaching them.

Have a great week everyone!

Mom you didn’t tell me anything about Liz’s boyfriend.

Elder Howlett

P.S.  Jacob 6:12 (maybe all of chapter 6 to get some context)


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