Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Busy Days in Bolivia


Here's a journal entry from possibly the most productive day I have had in this area, when it comes to mission work:

"3 Julio, 2014. Jueves. Universidad II

It's suprising to me how much I can get done when we have everything p`lanned out well.  I'm not lying when I say we were in a rush all day long, practically running from cita to cita.

We started off the morning early, with excersizes and a big breakfast, prepared by norma and Jessenia the day before (recent converts). After, at 8 am, we went over to Julia Chabarria's house to give service. I'm not kidding, we washed clothes for 3 hours straight, with her giving the orders every step of the way. I was hunched over the big water bucket for so long, that my back was in strong pain all day long after.

At 11:30 we arrived back at the house.  There was no time to study, or even shower, because we had a cita with Efain at 12 on the dot. All we did was shave and put on extra deodorant.  Efrain ended up presenting us to his friend, Eli. They study together at La San Simon, a state college here. We taught lesson 1 and she weemed to accept. Sunday she says she will come too. After we help her and Efrain with some upper level english class homework, then flew to lunch.

After shoveling down our food quickly, we went to Ghersons house, cita fija. He wasn't able to talk, so we went to Doña maria, who wasn't in her tienda either. After we went to Juana Espinoza, but she just asked us to come back tomorrow for a cita.

Finally, we arrive at Kevin and Arnolds house. Their Aunt ends up coming and greeting us, and invites us in.  We end up teaching her the plan of salvacion. She has to sell chicharron on Sundays in order to keep her family afloat, but she said she will do her bext to come on Sunday, maybe for one hour. We will go pick her up also Sunday Morning.

After, we left Amada's, Volando over to heidys. We were late to a cita fija we had with her. She has had tons of doubts about the church, eve though shes beena member for more than 10 years. They've mainly come for one reason: While going through a rough time a few weeks ago, her firend invitied her to his church, Crist Viene (yeah, the one created by an ex member who claims the same exact story as Jose Smith). She said she had a beautiful experience there, and really felt something.  SO, we are working a ton with her on her testimony so she can resolve her doubts.  She is reading the LdM ad praying often, so I know she will be able to rerain her testimony, and be reactivated. SHe promised us she will come on Sunday also.

From Heidy's, we booked it over to Zacharias's house, another set appointment.  With him, we have to be super direct. He has already attended 2 times, so this is what I told him: 'Zacarias, your sister in law Magda is getting baptized on the 12th of July. If you attend the sunday, and have your answer, you too can be baptized with her on that day.'  That really made him aware of the situation, althought he didn't accept nor reject the invitation.   But, we will see if he attends on Sunday.

Next stop we hit Assis, but he wasn't home. We ended up visiting Julio Cesar, a less active youth of 23 years old. We are getting to know his whole family, who aren't members yet except his litter sister who's also less active.  He recently quit his job, which was on Sundays, so he can focus better on studies and try to come back to church.  We taught him about the santa cena and explained to him he could be the example for his whole family to get baptized. 

Finally we made it to dinner, pounded the food, and filled out a progress report for ward counsil. We have a lot of tasks we need from the members, but they are really willing to help.  We gave our schpiel, and then turned the time over to the other companionship in the ward. Realizing I wouldn't be able to help them out with their area, my eyes became very heavy, and I eventually passed out for a few seconds. Luckily I don't think anyone noticed.

5 lessons, 1 new person, service. Today was very productive, I'd say.

Elder Potts III
Bolivia Cochabamba Mission

A New Mission President

Last week the old mission president went home, and as of friday, we are under the reign of a new president, President Hansen.  NObody knows too much about him, but I was able to meet him on Saturday.  He is tall, hefty, in his late 50's, and wears hearing aids.  He came off as a great guy though.  I'm excited for the future with a new President.

We had out last conference on Wednesday with Predient Dyer, and it wasn't like normal ones.  It was filled with crying, last testimonies, and even a talk by Sister Dyer on "How to find your future wife." She asked us to take notes, but the fold it over and not read the notes until we get home.  The conference ended with president and sister Dyer hugging each and every missionary, and sharing a few words with us.  Presidents words to me? "You will be a great leader among these missionaries, Elder Potts."  It really meant a lot to me.

My companion and I had an experience this past week with a new person that we found. " We went and visited a little old fragile lady this morning named Hna. Espinoza. I have never wanted to help anyone so bad before. First of all, she is 80 years old, lives alone, and has no family even in the country.  She is also very sick with diabetes, and suffers from severe depression.  All she wants is for her family to be with her again, but her husband passed away a few years ago.  We had a very long visit with her, but I know she enjoyed every minute of our company. We shared with her about the plan of Salvation, and how this information can help her understand better our purpose here on earth, and where we are going. I know she was glad to learn about this plan. She no longer can read, so we will leave her with videos or audio to listen to next time we visit her."

So, Magda, the Golden Investigator we have been teaching now for a few weeks, introduced us to her sister, Flavia this past week.  She is 100% just as golden as Magda.  It was amazing teachign with both of them, and Magda began helping us teach the restoration and bearing her testimony... She hasn't even been baptised yet and she is already giving her testimony!  I feel blessed with the investigators that we have right now.

I love you all, stay safe and advise me of your activities throughout the week!

Elder Potts III

Bolivia Cochabamba Mission