I know it has been a while since I have written a long family letter, but I promise I haven't forgotten about all of you. If y'all have time though, you should send me a quick email; Whats going on in your lives, school, work, family, kids, anything. That way I feel like I know what's going on with everyone!
Anyways, back to my life: The mission. I feel like not much has changed here, but maybe that's just because the mission makes you used to changes.
So, right now, I am training. He is my first kid (as they call it in the mission, when you train someone.) He is a great guy, and honestly, has been my best companion. You really tend to latch onto your trainers because they are the one's who show you the ropes. Not just when it comes to teaching, but also just how the mission is in general.
My Kid is named Elder Cortez. He is from Ecuador, but lived for a year in Mexico before the mission. He is a former professional soccer player. When he was 16, he was recruited by a person to play in Mexico, and eventually worked his way up from the reserve squad to the main team. Within a few months, he was making decent money, and had no real plans of being a missionary. With that money, he purchased a motorcycle that, according to him, was way too powerful for his 17 year old body to handle. He was involved in a terrible motorcycle accident, which ended his soccer playing days. After he has healed enough to travel, he headed back home to Ecuador. In the airport was his family, and also his bishop. His handed him a folder which contained his mission papers. That was the first time in his life he had seriously considered a mission, although he was raised in the church. So, while healing, he began to work and prepare for the mission, arriving here in Early January.
This week is Carnaval. I know James, and also Jenny and Mom and Dad experienced this holiday in Peru while they were there. But for those of you who don't know about it: It's basically a week long water fight. And some people don't use water. They use paint, gasoline, soapy water, and somethines the balloons have rocks in them. As you walk through the streets, you are constantly sprayed with water guns, and pegged with waterballoons, and sprayed with silly string. This is not a holiday I enjoy, to be honest. It also means the missionarys cannot teach. 3 days of nothing but sitting inside the house (or throwing water ballons from our balcony, since I live in the plaza now). This holiday started yesterday, and goes until this wednesday.
So, you all remember my pensionista? She is the nicest person you could ever come across, and would do anything you want for you. ANyways, she has a daughter, who is in her late 20's. This daughter has been living in Italy for the past 8 years, but recently returned home to live. Her name is Johana, and is equally as nice.This week we have been focusing on putting fecha bautismales with people we know are prepared. While teaching lesson 3 with Johana, who is very interested in baptism, she explained to us she knows she needed to be baptised, but wanted to wait a bit. At first, her excuse was that she felt she needed to learn more about the evangelio before being baptised. At that moment, her little sister quickly explained it was because she still wanted to drink, and party during Carnaval. That is when we decided to take the lesson in a different direction. We flipped to Alma 34:33 where it explains that we should not procrastinate the day of our repentance. After that, she accepted the new baptismal date for 2 weeks from now, and has promised to keep the word of wisdom. Her family, and us, were very proud of her for taking this step in her life. She has told us she plans on staying in Bolivia for a while, and attends church with her family every week.
Well, time is running short and we have to go. If everyone could send me even a few sentences about your week, or what theyre up to I'd love that! Keep in touch!
Bolivia Cochabamba Mission