Thursday, January 29, 2015

2015-01-26 My last cambio has begun.

Hey Everyone,
Well, this is it.  My last cambio has begun.  I will be staying in Colcapirhua.  My companion won't which is the surprise.  I'm getting a new companion named Elder Palma.  I don't know him but this will be his first cambio as a zone leader and I've heard that he only has a little over a year in the mission.

I'm very happy that I'm sticking it out here in Colcapirhua.  It's been raining a lot here.
Valencia kids
This week we went to the temple with a bunch of people from the ward including the Valencia family (minus Rinaldo because he had to work) and Denilson and the Pozo family and Lucia Colque.  The last two are less active members who we work with.  I love the temple!  I really love how it feels to be there.  The Valencias had done a little family history work and Alan got baptized for his grandpa.

Denilson has been going with us a lot to do visits.  He went all day long on Friday.  I gave him a copy of Preach My Gospel and he's been reading it.  He's getting less and less nervous and better at expressing himself.  He's a really great kid and it's a lot of fun to go visiting with him.

Samuel and Brenda came to church on Sunday.  Brenda is 24 I think and Samuel just turned 11.  Their mom, Maria, didn't make it to church this week but did last week.  She was there for our Sunday afternoon lesson though.  We teach them outside under a palm leaf roof shelter.  It's really nice.  They have dogs and cats and ducks and turkeys and chickens wandering around.  Maria really likes us but is super Catholic.  She's excited to meet my parents.
Alan Valencia
Alan brought his best friend Jerson to church yesterday.  Jerson loved the church and told us he wants to get baptized.  I haven't met his family yet so we'll have to see how they are.

Of the 4 siblings who were listening to us, the oldest 2 are doing far better than the younger two.  The older ones are Manuel and Maria.  They are both reading in the Book of Mormon and we watched the Joseph Smith video with them.  Classes are about to start up again in the university here so I'm worried that it's going to be harder to find them starting this week.

I love being a missionary.  I believe that by the gospel is by far the best way to live this life.  It's worth it to go to the work of changing your life to live the gospel.  I'm certain that anyone who does their best to live the gospel will eventually make it to the Celestial Kingdom.  I love my Savior and know He loves us.

Elder Howlett

2015-01-19 ... if she can win herself a testimony

Hey Everyone,
Well, this week was excellent.
Daniel Fernandez baptism
Daniel Fernandez finally got baptized. The other guy in white on the left is Hermano Ancalle, our ward mission leader.  I think it was very good that Hermano Ancalle got to baptize him.  We had a meeting later that night between the missionaries in our ward and him.  Hermano Ancalle bore a heartfelt testimony and told us that baptizing Daniel had reminded him of his own mission.  Since that time he's been more excited about working with us.

We are actually having a lot of success as far as working with the ward goes.  The ward is much more involved with us than it has been in any of my other areas.  The 3 companionships that are working in our ward right now are actually all very good missionaries which helps a lot.  We have had a lot of good activities with the ward with a lot of attendance.  We get lots of people to do visits with us and the ward is really helpful to our investigators when they come to church.

Kevin and Denilson in Denilson's house
Denilson went with us to do visits again.  He's only been a member about a month but the entire time we were walking around between visits he was asking us things about the mission because he's super excited to go.  He's 17 right now.  He took us to one of his friend's house where we had a great first lesson and his friend, Diego, accepted a baptismal date for the end of February. He bore a great testimony about how he'd come to know that this is the true church and how that had changed his life.

Rinaldo was confirmed and received the priesthood this week so that was pretty exciting.  He's officially started his new job where he gets home at 6 Monday to Friday and only works 'til noon on Saturday and not at all on Sunday.  

teachin' Marcelo
This Saturday we are going to the temple with members of the ward and with a bunch of recent converts for the first time including:  the Valencia family, Kevin Laura, and Denilson.  I'm excited for that.

This Sunday that's coming is the last transfer of my mission.  I had an interview with President this week and he asked if I wanted to stay a fifth transfer or go somewhere else.  I told him I want to stay.  He said that as long as the Lord doesn't need me anywhere else he can do that.  So hopefully the Lord doesn't need me anywhere else. 
The Valencias' next door neighbors, Maria (the mom) and Samuel (the 11-year-old son) came to church on Sunday.  That was awesome because Maria is super Catholic.  She is a really good person and really likes us though.  She would be a faithful convert if she can win herself a testimony.  Samuel loves the church.  He was coming before with the Valencia family.
zone in Pairumani
I think I mentioned Maria, Manuel, Adriana, and Daniela last week.  They are between 16 and 21 years old and intelligent.  We taught them a couple times again this week and for the first time Daniela and Maria came to church.  We have a Family Home Evening with them tonight and I'm making root beer floats for the treats because I found root beer cans for 1 boliviano each.  

25 mangos for 4 Bolivianos
Kevin's 2 younger brothers, Alan and Samuel, both came to church too.  They are pretty much ready to be baptized.  We are getting pretty much nowhere with the dad still though.

Alex Trigori was also in the church on Sunday and reads the Book of Mormon and prays every day and is set on getting baptized.  We are progressing a little with his parents though.  

Things are going great here in Colcapirhua.  I like my companion and my area.  It's a pretty area.  It's rained almost nonstop all week long.

I enjoy being a missionary.  It's a lot of fun to just visit people and meet people and talk about the gospel all the time.  I love Bolivia.  I love the gospel.

Elder Howlett