January 30, 2012 Tartagal
This week was a great one! My companion and I have been changing a lot of little things to just do better. We talk about everything and it works out. We just have to keep trying to do better than last week or yesterday or earlier in the day. It’s a constant thing that never ends - or at least in this life. I still remember what Brittany Wilson said about the mission before I left that when we think something needs to change or when something is bugging us alot of times its our "outlook" on what’s going on. When we change our outlook, our attitude changes about the situation.
I feel so blessed to have the help of the Spirit to tell me when to and when not to say things or react a certain way. I like to go back to one of my favorite verses in the Book of Mormon - Mosiah 3:19. It helps me keep trying and keep going back to my Heavenly Father to have his Spirit in order to make good or better decisions. I know that we were given what we needed to follow the example of Jesus Christ. we just have to take advantage of it (the Spirit) by always being worthy of it.
This week we had a baptism of a kid named Leonel Orellana. He is 14 years old and has two younger siblings who are not baptized yet but they should be ready this Saturday. The parents weren´t coming to church but the mom has started to come to be with the kids. There are some older kids, the oldest being 23, who we are working on bringing back to church too. They are just one of the nicest families I have worked with. The oldest kid was going to church and when he turned 19 he wanted to go on a mission. His mom didn’t let him because she wanted him to be a border patrol. I think she was inactive at the time. He lost all his excitement and went to be a border patrol.
This week the girl that lost three babies before they were born came down to Tartagal today to come to church and visit family for 15 days. The mission president said that with their desire they can be baptized with a minimum of coming twice to church. Then they should come once a month to renew their baptism covenants until he can get the priesthood and bless the sacrament in his home! He has to work so it’s going to be harder for him to come down to go to church but we will see what happens. Maybe his wife will lead the way first since she has a little more time.
We had another successful Sunday! There were 115 yesterday in church. It’s hanging out around that number because when someone comes, someone else doesn´t make it. It has really helped me as a missionary to be looking at these numbers and thinking about how we can help it grow. We have been doing all we can to lighten the load of the branch president and it has been working out well because he has alot more excitement to keep going also. He just called 5 members to different callings after we gave him a list of people and possible callings. Hopefully he will continue to call people every Sunday this month! we’ll see how that goes.
We now have a Young Men’s president and teacher for the Sunday school class of the young men and women. We were teaching that a few times. We also now have a refreshed Young Women’s presidency which is going to help alot. Between the young men and women we are going to work to get alot of kids coming back to church. The Young Men’s president is the guy that just got married and reactivated when we baptized Melina his wife. We just played soccer as an activity today which seems to bring alot of them.
Melina just got called to the Young Women’s presidency. It is so cool to see them with such a strong desire to continue and to help others keep going. Even before they were called, they were going and visiting with a couple of the families. We also just had our 5th Sunday lesson on visiting and home teaching. Our numbers here werent the best... 4 families out of 250 visited and 9 sisters were visited. People shared experiences and they are all very motivated. We hardly could meet together in the biggest room available because the other branch uses the sacrament meeting room during that hour. It was a very stuffy class but very spiritual too.
Well I’d better get going.
Happy Birthday to Ryan Hollander!
I love you all and thank you for your love and support! Thank you all for the Christmas cards! Please forgive me if I haven´t gotten back to you!