[October 13, 2010 Letter]
Another week has passed by here in Salt Lake City and things are going great.
I'll answer some of your questions first....I am fine financially, no need to worry there. It's actually a common occurrence that people pay for our food whenever we go out to eat, its already happened probably 5 times since I have been here. Plus, I have my mission debit card which gets money on it from the mission. So I'm all good here.
And yes, for general conference and every once in a while I do gel my hair, just cause its getting a little long and spiking it a little makes it look a little shorter and a little nicer...but I got a haircut today so I wont need to do it again for that long.
As for the Visas...really don’t know anything, Elder Coulston says the mission office will call me when there is news, but with his previous visa waiters they were both there for the full transfer or 6 weeks, and they were both going to Mexico as well.
Anyways, thanks mom and dad for the emails, its great to hear from you and hear how things are going in the SCV. Sorry to hear that Bryce got hurt and not sorry to hear that Valencia lost. And HAPPY BIRTHDAY Tyler!! I swear I remembered, I actually got you a card today, so it will be mailed tomorrow and get there a little late, but I sent it before your birthday so that’s all that matters.
Ok, so as for the week here in the field, things are going pretty good. Carlos and Marisela continue to just amaze me at how prepared they are for the Gospel and how much their faith and love for the church has grown. On Sunday, Marisela actually had to work, but she got off work at 3, and drove as quick as she could over to church to catch the last hour (our church is 1-4). She went to Relief Society in her supermarket work clothes, and we heard afterwards that she bore her testimony at the end of the meeting and it brought a lot of the sisters to the point of tears. Then, yesterday, we went over the baptismal interview questions with them, and we actually taught them about tithing and about the word of wisdom right there. Carlos was telling us how he felt bad because he couldn’t pay tithing because he doesn’t have a job and isn’t making any money right now. He also told us that occasionally he drinks a little bit of alcohol just every now and then, but he didn’t even hesitate and told us he would stop immediately. They didn’t even question or doubt the word of wisdom or tithing at all, which a lot of people tend to get hung up on. They really are amazing people, very faithful and humble, and things are still looking great for their baptism this Saturday.
Speaking of people being prepared for the Gospel, we got an interesting phone call sometime last week. We got a call from a guy named Felix. He told us he wanted to get married to his girlfriend and baptized into our church....We promptly were at his house in no more than 10 minutes. We decided we could help him out. The funny part is that we had contacted his girlfriend about 2 weeks ago and she seemed completely uninterested and gave us the "I don’t have time right now" speech. But now her (Sandra) and Felix want to get married and baptized. We put them on date for the 23rd as well as their wedding on the 23rd. We went to temple square with them on Monday and continue teaching them daily. I guess he had been meeting with the missionaries about a year ago and was going to get baptized, but then he moved and never got back in contact with the church. Either way....they are the definition of prepared to hear the gospel.
Umm, this week we also got dropped by 2 investigators who we had a lot of hope for. Carlos (17) and Diana (19) both prayed about the plan of salvation and they both said that they felt good about it. We stopped by their house on Sunday and tried to get them to church and they had a soccer game but said they would try to make it to the last hour. We got a text from them at church saying they aren’t interested in changing religions...hmm. We suspect the parents were involved but we don’t know. We haven’t been able to find them or contact them since. It's very disappointing when you can tell someone knows its true, but they don’t act on that faith and accept the gospel of Jesus Christ.
Hmmm lets see, everything continues to be good here. We run in the mornings a lot, and Elder Coulston, Elder Romero and I all get along great. Both of my companions enjoyed the Rice Krispies you sent as did I...I think I would venture to say that they are the best so far. By the way who makes those? and what started the whole rice krispies phase?? It's alright with me they’re delicious. Let's see we have zone conference tomorrow, and a baptism this weekend!! This will be my first one where I have seen the investigator progress the whole way...from the first visit to baptism...so that's exciting.
I know that this church is true and that Jesus Christ is our savior and redeemer. I know that only through him can we return to live with Heavenly Father again and live with our families forever. I also know that it is not enough to just say you have faith in Jesus Christ, you have to act on that faith and follow the example of Jesus Christ by repenting and being baptized by water and the Holy Ghost for the remission of sins by someone who holds the restored priesthood of God. After we do those things, the process isn't over, it is just beginning, we have to continue to repent and strive to build our testimony and become like Jesus Christ each and every day, or in other words, endure to the end. If we can do all those things, which make up the Gospel of Jesus Christ we can have eternal life, I know that this is true and it is something that all of us should be striving for each and every day.
I love being a missionary, and I love and miss you all.
Have a great week,