Friday, February 15, 2013

10-22-12    Salta   Argentina



Wow! the weeks just go faster and faster. This week has been trying but very interesting and has built up my ability to identify the spirit and search for the spirit in the different activities that we do. Sometimes we study but don’t feel too much and so we have to search and desire the spirit with all our hearts for the benefit of the Lord’s work.

So the two sister missionaries left with short notice to a different area so we have to take over their area and investigators until the president puts two more elders in the area. It will be a challenge but I have a feeling that we will be in divisions all this week with members.

 We have two people to prepare for baptism and one we don’t know aside from seeing and talking to her in church briefly. The president told us to look for an apartment for 4 missionaries - that’s why we know he will be putting two elders in. It’s really exciting because the ward we are in should be splitting in December and the stake will also split if things go as planned. Then the area will ask for a temple here! I am so excited for the mission in the next few years! It’s so exciting to see the growth that is happening.

 We found a wonderful family because a member who is 18 years old said, when I asked if he had any friends nearby to visit when our appointments failed us, that he always wanted to knock the door of a certain house. It happened to be his friend and so we talked and he went to a church activity and then on Saturday went to a soccer activity and came to church Sunday. His brother is a member in southern Argentina. He doesn’t know much about the church but has a sincere desire to learn more. We also received the mom of this kid as a reference from a member not knowing they were family because she wasn’t at home when we went to talk to the kid the first time. We contacted the mom at her vegetable stand where the sister had told us she is always working. My companion did that the day after I went to the house. Then walking past the stand the next day the kid (Fernando) was showing up to talk to her. We could feel that the Lord was sending us there and that it was no coincidence.

Well we have to go! There is so much to do! I love you all!!!!!!!



10-16-12    Salta   Argentina


Hi mom
Sorry I didn’t write yesterday. We had a full day and due to all the stuff we had to buy, we didn’t make it here. We are doing great and are happy and having a great new week! The rope is tied across our room to hang our stuff on. haha. [I had asked Alex what the rope was for.] I will try to take some pictures before we take it down. We didn’t get everything so we will have to go back next week.

I love you all!

10-8-12      Salta   Argentina



This conference weekend was really great. We got some recent converts there and 7 different investigators. We could have had alot more but we need to commit the people a little better beforehand.

I watched the Saturday sessions in Spanish but found that when I tried to note something down I couldn’t stay focused on what they were talking about so when I went to English it was easier to take notes and still hear what they were saying.

I loved Elder Holland’s talk. I guess he gave the same one (almost) in the mtc but was even more bold and firm. He has a couple famous talks in the mtc. He has so much power behind what he says, it’s amazing. "Do you love me?" will be a question I frequently ask myself. It really makes one ponder and think about how we can improve. It seems they are really pushing for a higher speed of perfecting ourselves. Between that and dropping the age for missionaries to 18 and the girls can leave at 19 now makes me feel the second coming is alot closer.

Well we moved today and that used a bit of our time. I feel like I am camping even more now than ever haha. We will be buying an oven and fridge next Monday along with bed frames and closets... we have a rope and a floor and bathroom for now. The most important things at least! haha. We will eat alot of bread with non perishable things. :)

The chapel is close by so we will study and cook there if needed. This is the first time in my mission that I have lived in my area! I am excited and can already picture our neighbors in the baptismal font! haha.

Well I love you all so much and hope everything is going well!



10-1-12      Salta   Argentina



I am just getting to know the members here and don’t really have a relationship with them yet because there are about 120 -130 actives! Lots more than I am used to. We have alot more lunches with less actives and recent converts here because our mission leader organizes the lunches.

This week was an amazing week! At the beginning we were a little worried about the people who we were preparing to baptize - that they would need more time. We didn’t find them until Tuesday or Wednesday. The father of three kids is preparing to baptize his kids but needs to get active again. He is close but wasn’t ready for this week. He seemed ready on Thursday but Friday didn’t show up and Saturday we didn’t find him before the baptism.

The other lady had a testimony and her interview a few weeks ago but kept putting up doubts. Every time we saw her this week she said she didn’t want to listen to us any more. We always got into the house to talk about it and she would say no no no to baptism. This went on until Friday night when we had a very spiritual lesson with her - but she was still not wanting to do it. We had ended a fast Friday afternoon which was the key along with fervent prayer. Saturday we did divisions and my companion went to see if she was going to come that night to the baptism. He didn’t insist like he was doing before but just talked to her. After the prayer my companion told her that she hadn’t said if she was going to get baptized that evening or not and she said she was going to do it!

We stopped by to go to the chapel with her to see if anything had changed her mind or if she was just saying it to get us out of her house and she was all ready to go and excited.

Friday night we were just praying that she would feel the spirit and that it could work in her and that she could have the desire to get baptized and knew that was the only way it would happen. After her baptism and confirmation on Sunday she looked like a different person! It was truly a miracle! Her 8 year-old daughter got baptized at the same time. I don’t have the pictures yet but I will send them when I get it from the bishop. We didn’t have our cameras with us.

I have to get going. We still only have one mini and aren’t moved out yet. We should be moving this week some time. We will be right by the chapel in our area. It will be really nice.

I love you all and thank you for everything.


9-24-12      Salta   Argentina


Wow! We are swamped in the work here! I am in a ward that is alot more organized than any I have been in and it’s a blessing because we have sooo much to do! My companion and I are the zone leaders here and I really didn't think I was ready but I realized I have to bump up to the task. Alot of today was used to prepare for our zone conference tomorrow. We also have so many people to teach that we asked for two mini missionaries. They are going to be with us tomorrow and I barely know my new area! Mini missionaries are so we can be in divisions constantly to teach everyone.

We had two people get baptized who are so great. They are brother and sister, and a friend of theirs brought us to their house. I have a feeling the family will shortly be baptized too.

I forgot my camera card today but I will try next week. We will be moving sometime to a different apartment. Well I love you all so much and forgive me for not writing any letters. It’s next to impossible with all that is going on.



9-17-12        Salta   Argentina


I got transferred back to Salta near the city center right next to my
first area! haha
I might be going on divisions in my previous area so that will be cool.
We got to Salta late and I have no time to write. I am doing great! I
love my Heavenly Father and Savior Jesus Christ and all of you!

I will fill you in next week if we don’t end up moving to an apartment
in our area. We have to take a bus to get in as of now.
Sunday before church, we had a baptism because the water was broken or
something Saturday. He is 85 years old and loves the church! He is a
real gentleman! You don’t find many as nice as he is!

Love Alex!

My new companion is Elder Rodriguez from Buenos Aires!
Back to 100% Spanish

9-10-12               Tucumán   Argentina


So this week was really cool! We got to see the rededication of the temple in Buenos Aires! We watched it on the big screen at church Sunday morning and a second session right after for those who couldn’t in the morning. There were a couple different talks in the two sessions but the first was super good! One of my favorite 70´s (Arnold) was there and gave a wonderful talk. Elders Ballard and Christofferson of the 12 were there and along with President Eyring. They all spoke and it was really good.

A couple things I learned was that in life we are to figure what’s important and what’s not really that important and put the important first.

The temple recommend is like oil in our lamps and we need to always be prepared.

Pres. Monson dedicated the temple in B.A. when it first opened in 88(?) and it was the 39th temple. Now the Brigham City temple being dedicated in two weeks will be the 139 temple!

There is no sacrifice too big or pain too great to receive the blessings of the temple.

It is now the biggest temple in South America and by seeing the pictures it looked like a beautiful temple.

We also watched the temple celebration which is a cultural event and has a lot of different types of the local dances done by youth in the church. It was really cool and two of our investigators went and really liked it too. Pres Eyring and the two apostles shared their testimonies and blessings with everyone here and it was really spiritual for the investigators!

All of it made me want to go to the temple really bad but I will use that energy to get the members there that need to go from the branches I am in. In one week we have exchanges but you can send anything to me still. I will get it to those that need it.

All of a sudden I am finding tons of people with kidney problems... I am wondering if the translation of the roots and weeds that are in the bag are what they are called in Spanish or just names translated literally. Maybe you could look on the internet to find a correct translation. I’ll see if anyone knows here.
It came to my mind that maybe I am supposed to do all I can to share the information with those in need of it since the opportunities are coming up so often. I have thought that maybe it would be easier to come back with the information prepared and do some classes on it in the chapels. Who knows? haha

I will get the package on Tuesday of this week so don’t worry - it's here.



9-3-12                  Tucumán   Argentina


At church yesterday Rocio brought even more of her friends and they all got up to say thank you for a few things like their families at the testimony meeting! It was really cool. Before that though when they got to church there was not a single sister. So they went to a room and set it up and Rocio said she was going to teach her friend out of the principles of the gospel book. Then a sister came who is reactivating and got to be with them. In her testimony she said that she hadn’t had the opportunity to have daughters but that she felt God was giving her a different opportunity. I bet she will get the calling to be the young women’s president. At least I hope so.

We found a couple other families we will be teaching so I am super excited for that! I don’t have any more time though so I’ll write more next week.

Oh I got to bleed some brakes on a three wheel motorcycle with a little pickup bed on the back. They are really common here and you might find some pictures if you look for "motocarro". The brother didn’t know why his new brakes gave out on him. He had just had the cylinders replaced. He wasn’t going to go with us to an appointment but then after we helped show him how to bleed his brakes he decided to come with us! The jack fell out while we were doing it and I should have looked how he had it before cause it was pretty ridiculous. It hit my shoulder but didn’t go down too far so it only bruised it.

Well now I really have to go! Love you all!

8-27-12               Tucumán   Argentina

So I got one of the packages... the other one should be in the offices still. Someone forgot to load it into the president’s car or something when he came out here to Tucumán from Salta. I got the package that had the pork jerky and oregano and peppermint and gum. The oregano broke this time but the peppermint survived. The paper you had written out got soaked and the ink disappeared from the paper. I am guessing it was telling me the mixture of the oregano and peppermint. The plastic got poked by the glass parts and so everything had oregano. It smelled good wherever it went so that’s good. haha It didn’t ruin anything at all but the gum has a little oregano flavor hint to it. haha

I don’t know if I told you before but after my last companion showed me how, I have been directing the hymns in sacrament meeting for one of the branches. I don’t always know how but I do the best I can. It’s a little difficult sometimes since there is no piano. I have taken on a whole new interest for music. I would really love to learn the piano which I wanted to do before I left but never put too much thought into it. That and guitar is my goal for after the mission.

The last few days it has been overcast and super cold!!! I say super cold but I doubt it dropped below 40F. I really have no idea judging the temperature now. It’s sunny again today but the evening will be cooler.
We lost contact with a couple people we were preparing for baptism so we are in the search still. They don’t have cell phones and aren’t ever where the family says they are. I am sure we will find them and things will work out though. Rocio, the recent convert (12 years old) invited 2 new friends to church today and they were all cleaning the chapel and class rooms since they got there early. They are all very excited but we still don’t have a young women’s president or teacher. One sister got there and the president asked her to take charge of them since no one was there to go to relief society. I never thought I would see a branch with more elders and young men coming then young women! It should be easier to fill in the other half now!

I will look today again for the recipe but could you send me the apple cake and cobbler recipes? And if you can the chocolate chip recipe from Lois Deyo.

Well I have to get going.
I love you all and thank you for everything!


8-20-12               Tucumán   Argentina



One thing I have been learning here in the mission is persistence. Over and over again we try to get members, less actives, and investigators to church but time and time again they don’t come. When one family quits listening to us we go find two more! This week we confirmed the kid that didn’t get confirmed last week and his dad came for the last half of sacrament meeting which is a step with him.

Rocio, the little girl who got baptized the 21 of June brought 2 cousins to church and was asking if the stake Young Womens president was coming to work on the personal progress with them. Hardly anyone came for the classes so they were with us but I am learning how to adapt the class for younger kids too. It’s really tricky but something that will just keep taking practice.

An older gentleman came to church who we have been teaching for two weeks but he cannot see very well. We have to get a bigger book for him until he can get a new pair of glasses. He really liked church though! He feels alot better after learning how to pray the way we do.

Roxana came to church again and we left a Word of Wisdom booklet with her and she said she is buying more vegetables now! haha Didn’t have any other problems except tea because it’s the cheapest thing here. She will quit that right now though. She is reading and liking the Book of Mormon more and more. We are still teaching her in the house of some members who are active but sometimes don’t come to church because they all sleep in. haha Not the best example for Roxana but she still goes.

This week we talked to this guy that works in a mine. I might have told you about him but if not he is the one that grew up in the Jehovah Witness church. He had read more, but not as much as we were hoping. At one point though when I bore my testimony he told me that he could feel the love I have for the Book of Mormon and what we are teaching. He said he liked how we are always honest and sincere when we don’t know something. It made me feel like something in my patriarchal blessing was being fulfilled. Speaking of which, I will look again in my stuff but I can’t find my backup copy. I know it’s in there just mixed in with all the other stuff. I lost my original because it was in my Bible when it got stolen. Speaking of which, I might be getting my Bible back. I always ask the kids on the corner who know the kids who stole my stuff and they have told me several times that one of the kids has it in his house. When we talked to them about the Word of Wisdom he seemed like the most receptive but we didn’t pursue it much with him because he wasn’t there when we had planned to see him. So now we will go back and talk to him and see if I can’t trade it for a Book of Mormon :)

Well I have to get going. I love you all!


8-13-12               Tucumán   Argentina


First I will try to answer your questions.

The thing my companion is pointing to on the wall is where a water shut off handle broke off... yes water was spraying out until we figured out how to shut it off with the same broken handle. The pipe and nozzle are in the wall so the tile has to be cut and the wall chipped away to replace it... when the houses are built they don’t think too much about repairs until they have to here haha.

This week we had another baptism but Sunday, he didn’t show up to church. His dad who is inactive came to the baptism but didn’t bring his son the next day to church. David is the kid’s name and he was so short I had to duck down to let him hold my arm. The water only was up to my knees too. I guess I could have just knelt in the font but it worked out fine. He is a really good kid and loves church. He has been reading all the little books for the lessons we taught him and always says a great prayer. Still has the energy of a nine year old but I am sure I was about the same.

The little old man is Hugo. He got baptized last week. He is always at church early waiting for everyone else to get there. We are trying to teach him how to read but it’s a slow process. We are hoping that maybe someone from the branch can help him out with that. A friend he met at church also doesn’t know how to read but his wife always read to him. It would be good if they both learned how.

The weather seems to be warming up a little bit now. I think it is the elevation that makes it so cold. A few months ago when we went up the mountain near here it was really cold and its not that much higher. I never saw snow on it though this year. It hasn’t rained for weeks so the roads and everything are really dusty.

We helped a member put up a chain link fence. It involved a little welding on his part. I said I didn’t really know how to weld but after seeing how he was doing it... I could have done it just fine haha. Everything is just to get by here. He is a really cool member who is about 25 years old married with two kids. They come every once in a while to church so we are working with them on that.

We had branch conference for one of the branches and the stake presidency came. It was really good but the stake president only had about 5 minutes to talk at the end of it... we had a ward council afterwards that I know will really help the members when we have ward council other times. Before, I don’t think anyone knew how to have one. We got by but now it should be better.

I made cornbread again today! It was really good. I think I will make it more often. It’s simple and everyone likes it. It’s different then banana bread too.

Well I have to get going! I love you all!



Missionary work is hard on the socks and shoes!!!!


8-6-12                  Tucumán   Argentina


So I survived transfers without getting moved or a change in companions. Elder Fox and I have been together for 24 weeks now and will have thirty at the end of this transfer. There will be alot of changes in the mission (companions in the next transfer because I guess there are about 20 missionaries waiting for visas and a group leaving and coming of about 20!) So I am guessing that is when the area that I am in gets split, putting two more missionaries here since we have two branches we are working with. Then each branch would have their own set of missionaries. So I might stay in one of the areas next transfer. Who knows?
I am excited though!

We will now have a Latino in our apartment because Elder Ricks is getting a new companion today.

We had another baptism this weekend and the other two areas in my district did too! It was a busy but exciting weekend.
Sunday afternoon and evening my legs have never felt so heavy! I never thought preparing people for baptisms could be so tiring haha.

The Buenos Aires temple will be reopening soon. I saw the pictures of the remodel and it is beautiful! Everyone should take a look. in the newsroom link.

We are still teaching Roxana the golden investigator! Her family came into town unexpectedly for her birthday and so she missed church again but she told the family all about the Book of Mormon and they all want to come to church the next time they are in town. There is no branch or church near to where the family is living but they can still figure something out. We are still teaching her with the active family and she loves it. We talked alot about prayer last night and she will pray about the Book of Mormon now. We don’t meet with her often because of her work and studies. But she said she has noticed a huge difference in peace and lack of nervousness in her studies and tests.

Well I have to get going! I love you all!



Sunday, February 3, 2013

7-30-12               Tucumán   Argentina

Hi mom!

On Monday I have my next transfer. I feel like I will stay here but I really don’t know...

Alot of people have been getting the stomach flu here. Other members on the same day didn’t come because of it. But they weren’t anywhere near us eating. They said it must be in the wind... we are a little more careful about using the hand sanitizer now.

I love the pictures! Thank you so much!

So this week was really good. Busy the way it should be.

I forgot to tell you we had a baptism last week and another one this week. They were both very nice.

One was an 11 year old girl who is the sister of another girl who loves going to church but just cant get her husband to take a morning off work to go do the marriage papers and blood test. The mom of Rocio (who got baptized) never showed much interest but she came to the baptism and really liked it. She too needs to get married. She wants to so now we have to get on them to get it done too.

 This weekend was the baptism of a kid who is 16 years old and has some mental progression difficulties. He is a great kid and very funny but just learning is harder. His mom and brother got baptized in December I think and the new stake president told us he felt he was able to get baptized if he understands the basic doctrine. He has wanted to pass sacrament for ever so now he will receive the priesthood and pass next week. He also wanted to be baptized really badly. He understood why and it was a fun experience teaching him. They are such a great family. She (the mom) was one taking DE and loving it. She had lower back pains that went away when she was taking them. She needs more and would like to do the liver cleanse too.

We got a reference to a girl who is studying here and her family lives in Jujuy and is pretty bored because she has no friends. She went to a church activity with one of her friends and really like it and the missionaries there passed her on to us. She lives a few blocks away from a great family (one of the strongest I have met in the mission). We took one of their kids and his cousin with us to her house due to lack of time and had a great lesson. The next night (last night) she came over to their house and everyone participated. It was one of the most spiritual lessons I have had in the mission. I have always wanted to bring the investigators to active members houses but they never live close or couldn’t leave the house or something. She will go to their family home evening tonight. The parents even walked her home last night after the lesson. It was so cool. It was the most ideal way of teaching someone. She already highly respected the kids for their testimonies the first night and now from the whole family. It made me think about us and some of the families we know. I think we just need to be a little more urgent and diligent in inviting.

This lady even said she feels like she is missing something in her life and that she feels like she is finding it. Roxana is her name for future updates.

Well I better get going. We have to go do alot still today!

I love you all and hope everything is going great!!!

Love, Alex




Here is a service project we did last Saturday too. I forgot to tell about that. We just helped the young men’s president put it in. He will do a thin layer of that and put tile on. Everything is done different here but it was easy to get the hang of it and it brought back memories of working on the house! I am grateful for cement trucks! hahaha

Love you all!


7-25-12               Tucumán   Argentina


Really quick because my companion was sick Sunday evening and slept all of Monday recovering. He is great now.

Not sure what he had but he vomited at church in the afternoon. He kept dry heaving so we got him some drops of some sort the sister Levrino said to take. It helped him out and he slept without issues.

Yes the older guy came again and is hanging out alot with the less active guy who came with his member wife this Sunday! I was super happy for him because he wants to go to the temple to be sealed.

I don’t read too many of those books because there is so little time. Always getting ready to leave or to go to bed. Anyways I love you all!

Love, Alex!

7-16-12               Tucumán   Argentina


On Monday I went to do divisions with the zone leaders and it really helped me out with my vision of what’s possible! We then had a zone conference right after that for most of one day and it even boosted my vision and excitement more! Then I found out I had to go back to Salta to sign a paper for my visa... that wasn’t the most productive time but I got back 24 hours later and started working and felt really good! Our president has really changed the mission for the better. He teaches so well with the spirit that you leave the zone conferences so excited to change anything that needs to be changed and do the very best you can. The mission is now the highest baptizing mission in Argentina but we aren’t quite reaching the goals which seem pretty low for what we believe we could be doing. There will always be room for improvement. I feel good about the things my companion and I are changing in order to reach our goals for the months.

We are working even more with members in order to teach all of the people we have to get to and the two different areas we have to work in and it’s really giving them excitement to keep working with us. I gave a talk on exaltation which also boosted my excitement. I felt at first like I was already burdened with a ton but then a split second later I knew that it was an opportunity to serve the branch president especially since it was a last minute thing Saturday evening. I had called to see if he could do divisions and ended up with the talk and finding someone else. haha. I guess he hurt his back and has no idea how.

One of the branch meetings had 37 people in it which was a nice bump from the average of 23 last month.
Saturday night we were not finding the people we had appointments with and when I was ready to ask myself what to do because our backup plans had all failed too I saw an old guy standing by his fence and asked if we could chat with him for a little bit. He ended up accepting a baptism date and wanted to go to church the next morning. I was skeptical that he was just saying things like alot do but I had a special feeling to stop by in the morning and he happened to be waiting. He is older and looked like he might have difficulties walking but he walked faster then most of the members we go out with! He stayed for the three hours and had a wonderful time. A less active member who we brought decided by himself to sit by him and walk home with him and invite him to eat lunch with us in his house on Tuesday! I was truly grateful and still am for another miracle among many others this week.

Well I love you all and I know that doing the Lord’s work brings the true happiness that one is looking for. Are you studying the George Albert Smith book there? We just finished the 3 chapters talking about missionary work and it was really really good! I can’t wait to read those when I get home because here we don’t have quite enough time.

Reading the Book of Mormon this week has been really fun. I have been trying to search it more diligently than just reading and I don’t have time to go off on different paths in my studies but it’s still great. I feel that it brings more power in our lessons due to having more of the spirit. It’s been a really good learning week. Now I just have to work on keeping the things applied and not forgetting them or slacking. Diligence is key!

Love, Alex

7-9-12                  Tucumán   Argentina


I was reading in 2 Nephi 6:15 and I am sure there are many others that say in the latter days there will be pestilence. The thought came to my mind to look it up to see what the dictionary says and it describes cancer perfectly... kind of interesting.

This week was an interesting but great one!

On Tuesday I was doing divisions with our branch president and we walked around a corner headed to a part-member family's house and these two kids came up and grabbed the president's little backpack and then saw my little scripture bag in my hands and grabbed it too. I told them they were just books but he pulled it and I let it go, not knowing what the other kid might have in his pockets where his hands were. They left and I wasn’t sure what to do. I felt pretty useless without my scriptures. I felt I had done the right thing though. I thought afterwards that I could have resisted more but that's not what we are taught. I was just thinking how much I would like to have my scriptures or at least my triple - since I had more marked up in it.

We stopped by a couple of members’ houses who live close to see if they knew the kids who hang out there. One did and said he would try to locate the stuff if they didn’t just burn it or break it. We left there and it was about 45 minutes after they took the stuff that we were headed out the main road. A few blocks down the road we saw a group of kids (who I know from saying hi and trying to get to know them a little so that things like that wouldn’t happen). The president didn’t know any of them and just said to cross the road, so we crossed and as we went a block further we came up to a crossroad that not too many cars go on and my the president said there is your bag. I was just thinking how much I would love to have the books and was praying silently that the member we talked to could find them. Anyways, it was right in the middle of the street and closed up but it was fuller then when they took it. I didn’t really think anything of it and was just thinking about how it got there and how grateful I was. When I opened it, the president’s books were in there too! Then I realized my bible wasn’t in there but wasn’t too disappointed. I have since asked a couple of the kids but one was really drugged up and drunk and I don’t think he understood me and another sheepishly said he didn’t know where it is but they all say hi to us now as the Mormons. I figure they opened it up with their friends and they said to put it over there in the street since it’s the only way out of the area and we pass frequently there. Or an angel picked it up and put it there right before we showed up.

Last night we got home from church a little early because I wasn’t feeling good at all. I think I ate too much because I stacked my plate up. The member always tries to give us a ton of food there. Took my plate and filled it up again and I feel bad to leave stuff but now I won’t hesitate there. It’s always so good but we walked fast afterwards rounding people up for church and we walked pretty far. In church I didn’t feel good. Anyways I am better now. Nothing happened. I was also really cold and shivering in church and afterwards my whole body hurt and was sore.

We stopped at a few people’s houses to set appointments and then went back.

When the other elders got home, one was about to clean a water line that gets plugged all the time from iron that builds up inside the pipes in the instant water heater. The valve to shut off the water just fell off in his hand and sprayed everywhere. They plugged it with a rag and they held it while we looked for a shut off outside and looked for the owner who lives under us. No luck with either of them. They continued holding and it was still spraying because they couldn’t plug it all the way. We let it go and put the handle back in place to try and close it and it worked! Only a trickle is coming out now but the hot water is plugged so we didn’t shower today... haha. The pipe is cemented into the wall as usual here so someone has to come chip it out and then replace the valve... the cast iron piece of the pipe that the valve is in just broke off. Ill try to send a picture next week.

The owner was on vacation because today is Argentina’s Independence Day. He also sounded really drunk and just said he’s not sure what to do haha. Then I called back and asked if he could send a friend or family with keys to shut of the main water. They didn’t help - just saying we had to get on the roof to shut off the water coming from the big tank on top of the house... no way to get up safely so we went to bed with it just dripping not too fast.

We weren’t having luck with any of our appointments on Friday morning and we were about to go to a different part of the area when we passed a door which I had thought about knocking in the past - just never had time. Then I thought, no how is anyone going to be there. It’s almost lunch time and if there is anyone they will be cooking and not want to let us in. We turned around to knock on the door and tried a new approach of contacting which we had learned this week and they said come on in! We were both surprised but it was really cool. We went back Sunday and the mom was there but the most interested is her 18 year old son. He didn’t come to church because he plays soccer during that time... always something but we will go again soon to talk about it and see if he is still reading.

Well I will talk to you later. I love you all!

Love, Alex

Saturday, February 2, 2013

7-2-12                  Tucumán   Argentina

We found this girl who was a reference because she has a tumor in the uterus. She has had it for several months now and I guess she got a job and stuff to get her mind off the fact that she might be dying soon. There is a family member who died two years ago only a few months after discovering the cancer there...  it's super sad but she is super interested in the church. I think she has to get married. She has a 2 year old kid too. She might be in her 20`s. Another lady we know as a reference is going through chemo therapy... she’s almost done.

So the Balderrama family (brother of Isabel) just baptized their 8 year old on Sunday during our second church meeting during the evening.

You don’t have to take up room in the package for socks because I am just folding the backs under my heel and don’t even notice it. Twice the life in each sock! haha. I also have a friend who said he has so many socks because his mom sends him some in every package and will give me some.

Samir, the little kid with asthma and a cough all the time coughs up what his mom says are egg pouches of something because they are little bag like things filled... that kind of freaked me out.

Love, Alex

6-25-12               Tucumán   Argentina


My companion was sick Saturday and we didn't leave the apartment. He was hurting throughout his whole body and was wiped out so he slept all day taking V-C, D, and oregano. He's way better now but we still both have runny noses and a little cough. A ton of people are sick now here. It’s colder now and people are always getting sick. If everyone ate healthier I think it would change that. Everyone needs to do the liver cleanse too. ha ha

Today we had transfers but I am still here with my companion and all the same people in my district. We’ll see what happens next time. I am really happy about staying!

Love, Alex

6-18-12      Tucumán   Argentina


sorry i wont have much to write this time. the writing time goes by super fast when i prepare stuff to print. thank you for the information!

I found two bottles of oregano in my suitcase so I'm not in dire need of it.

It’s been really cold the last few weeks here. It even frosted once last week when I was on divisions.

I went to Salta again so that was kind of fun but it sets us back with our schedule for the investigators. My companion had a brother to do divisions with but he had a couple meetings in the church so he lost some time there. I got to see my comp from the MTC for the first time in the mission. I also got to see a missionary who I lived with for my first 4 transfers. It was really cool to talk to them for a bit since immigrations office was packed and they like taking their time. I should be legal now though! ha ha

We are working really hard to get a couple married now that they feel the Book of Mormon is true and want to get baptized. The husband has to take time off work to get the blood test and wedding taken care off and that might not be able to happen for a little while. We’ll see what happens. We found an old investigator who also wants to get baptized but we have to help him quit smoking. His wife is reading and believes it’s true also and feels really good about it. So hopefully we will be baptizing two more couples in the next few weeks. I am hoping I have one more transfer here then I will have 4 in every area so far. Not that it matters but I would like to see them baptized.

Thank you for everything! I love you!

Love, Alex

6-11-12      Tucumán   Argentina

Hi mom!

We are going to print out a big map of our area today so we can start organizing groups to teach throughout our area. If you read in Mosiah 25:15 it is how they taught on their missions. Where I last was, we had started it but it was just getting going so I didn't see much happen but I could tell it would work and now in those areas they are baptizing more than one every week! It worked well in the last area because alot of willing active members and recent converts were living close by so we would find new people while teaching them. In this area everything is a little more spread apart but now the plans for starting the groups to teach are a little more refined. The president is always talking with other missionaries and putting together plans and guides for us to try out in our areas. It’s different in every area but we just have to learn how to use our minds and listen to the spirit and rely on the spirit to help us out more. The map will be about 4 or 5 feet wide if we can get it that big. Then we will pin names on it where people (investigators, active, inactive members, and recent converts) live. It will be fun once it’s done.

If everyone in the mission starts doing it we will all go to new areas but which are fairly well organized. It took about 3 months for the area that is having the best success at it. But it’s refined now so when we get it going we should start seeing better results. That one area is baptizing about 1-2 every week but the last few have had 5 to 7! The faster we accept the changes which are sometimes hard for people to make in the mission the faster we have results.

We had a few investigators in church this week so that was really nice after letting go of alot of our old investigators. They just weren't progressing and we had to move on. It’s always hard but it’s got to be done. One of the people came to church with her little sister but her boyfriend didn't come. We have to talk to them about marriage because I just found out they were back together. It’s the best way because they have two kids. She is excited to get baptized and had a date for the 23rd of June which could still happen since a member knows a guy that can get people married in a few days! Normally you have to wait a month or more...

The transfer is already coming to an end and it is so crazy because it’s going by so fast. I guess we still have two weeks left but that's nothing for how fast it goes by here. I have to go to other areas to do divisions now too so it just makes the weeks go by super fast. I might have to go back to Salta to do more paperwork stuff for the visa next week too so that will only add to the small amount of time.

Well I will send this one off and see what just came in. I love you all and everyone is so grateful for your knowledge of the herbs. I will try to get pictures with more of the families I am working with here than I have before so that you can see who they are! I feel bad about not having too many pictures but it’s also hard to get them because it’s bad to carry that stuff around. The two other missionaries who live with us got felt up by a group of guys wanting to rob them but they didn't bother looking in their bags and that's where their cell phone was. They just felt all their pockets and then the missionaries tried to get away from them as fast as they could.


Love Alex

6-4-12                  Tucumán   Argentina


Hi mom

So I forgot to tell you last week that we went to an exhibit in our area on Monday of the human body. It’s the muscles and body parts that you can go look at and see how everything works! It was really cool and they had alot of different parts taken out so you could see how it all goes together. They are real bodies and all real parts! I guess it’s way bigger in the states with way more to see. It was really cool though.

Today a member who has a taxi took us up to San Javier (mountain) where the big statue of Christ is. It was a very long trip but we were way up there and it was really cold. At least from what I am used to down below.

It was a tiny little road and the buildings up there were all super rich people’s houses except for their gardeners. There is a picture of a church that looks really European because the people who live up there came from Europe. There is also a picture of a hotel up there too.

Too bad it wasn’t clear but it was a good trip anyways. Pretty much the first real touristy trip I have done here.

This week I had to go to Salta to do the first part of my visa renewal. I have been illegal for a couple months. I have to go back again in 2 weeks to finish the papers. It’s about 4 hours by bus so not too bad. Time to take a nap and catch up on sleep. When we got to Salta in the night I didn’t see it but the next day going back I saw that the normal parking for the buses in Salta was caved into the river bed below. The whole road and parking lot right there was all caved in about 15 feet or so from what I could tell.

We are in the process of dropping alot of our investigators to find new ones who have a bigger interest because they aren’t going to church right now. We have a couple that go but they have other things keeping them from progressing. We found a couple new families but it looks like only one is going to progress. It’s about 1 in 20 that we find get baptized but it varies on the companionship. We are trying to work with the members more to get them to give us references because that is the most successful way. Especially if they come introduce us.

Oh I got the package when I was in Salta. They had just got it that day. Not too bad for time! Those are the fastest ones to get here. The envelopes.

Well I love you all and hope everything is going good!

Love, Alex

Say hi to everyone.