Well, this week has been pretty interesting. We’ve been working pretty hard, but unfortunately both of our baptisms fell through this week due to one heading off to Lima and the other to Huancayo before classes started. It is the end of summer vacation — kids have been out of school since Christmas — so hopefully it will be easier to find FAMILIES to teach. Well, time go get searching for more people to baptize. Seriously though, there are a lot here, you just need to do the right kind of searching.
Yesterday was rather heartbreaking. I seriously felt like someone ripped my heart out during Sacrament Meeting. We arrived early like normal, and there were only two people there — the branch president and an old woman that is always there super early. I instantly thought, “Well, there went all of my hard work again. Time to start working with inactives again.” As we got going through the meeting, a handful of members showed up. We arrived at a total of about 30-ish after having almost 70 the weeks before. I got up to bear my testimony and talked about things that were going on in the ward. The Spirit really guided me and I felt the Spirit fill my heart. I love this area so much, and as a servant of the Lord, when it doesn’t go through, we just feel so heartbroken because we want the salvation of so many people. I reminded the branch of some things that happened in the past, like a bunch of gossip, not liking the leadership that the Lord chose and other destructive things. I told them that if they weren’t building people up, they were tearing them down and thus being instruments in the hands of Satan, and not the Lord. The whole function of the Church is to help the poor in spirit and those that have tragedies in their lives, not to tear them down. I got a letter from Grandpa on Saturday that said that we shouldn’t judge people because we have no idea what their experiences are, how they grew up, and so many other facts about their life. That’s why the Savior gave us the commandment to not judge. We cannot do so accurately. I shared all of that and hopefully the “active” members will start to change their attitude about the other members and leaders.
Other than that, it was a pretty fun week. Not super productive since Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were Carnivál and nobody was home. We’d go to appointments, but nobody was home since they were all in the Plaza Principal dancing, cutting trees, and playing some really loud music. But, it’s how they celebrate, so I’m cool with it. It was actually fun to watch for a bit.
On Friday, we had splits with Junín again to do my baptismal interviews for my investigators. I chilled with Elder Meager again and we worked our butts off. They needed people to teach in Junín, so what we did was grab about 135 pamphlets of the Restoration, the Plan of Salvation, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ and just knocked doors like crazy. After four hours, we had done over 60 good contacts and found a few new people to teach as well as get one to accept a baptismal date. Then, we went out with a member (who started to teach me to crochet a hat, although I’m going to switch to knitting since they say it is easier. . .) and her two kids (oh, her husband also lives in Utah, but I have no clue where nor what his name is) and visited her friends that aren’t members. When we did that, we finished the day with over 82 contacts with a ton of possibilities. It was quite the day.
It’s funny that you talk about tithing in your letter. I was reading a bit in Enseñanzas de los Presidentes de la Iglesia: Lorenzo Snow and he said something very fascinating. There will ALWAYS be poor people in the church unless everyone in the Church starts to pay a full tithe. Really made me think about a lot of the families here in SPdC that are suffering from financial problems and how things would be better for them if they paid their tithing.
And, thanks for that thought mom. The Savior is always interested in what we’re doing, especially since I’m on the mission. I can feel His presence in so many ways now. I guess that as a Missionary, we’re given an extra portion of the Spirit, so I’m really learning how to recognize it. Compared to before the mission, I don’t know how I survived high school without recognizing the Spirit. I know it had a constant influence in me, but now I can feel it.
Well, that’s all I’ve got this week. Until next time! Love you all!