Hello Family and Friends!
Always great to hear from you! Probably my favorite part of all of Pday. Kristine and Dad, I got your letters today you sent around Halloween time and it was fun to see the pictures! Also it was great to hear from Dino and for his testimony! I´m glad everyone seems to be doing well. Everything is fantastic here in Argentina, and even a little bit cleaner thanks to the rain!
Don´t have a whole lot of time to write today, we´ve had a very crazy day so far. But here´s the highlights of this week.
Tuesday we had district meeting in Banfield and the Hermana´s in our zone dressed up like Lamanites and Nuns (Just for fun in the church for halloween). The nuns modified the rosario a little bit and put a book of mormon at the end instead of a cross. Also they made cookies for us so we were all very happy elders. :) After district meeting we went to burger king for lunch, very tasty, then we split up for intercambios. I spent the rest of the day and the next morning working with Elder Baggaley in his area in Ingeniero Budge. (Same area I worked with Elder Manning in). It was definitely a learning experience for both of us because he only has been in the field 6 weeks longer than me. Basically we struggled a lot with the language, but we were still able to contact people and teach some lessons, no doubt we were blessed with the gift of tongues!
Also the day we finished Intercambios, Elder Spence and I had divisions with some members in our ward. Elder Spence went with Maxi Rodriguez (14) and I went with Hno. Torres. He is a great man! We visited the familia Lallana, and Miguel (el padre) y his 3 girls watched Finding Faith in Christ. What a great video! The spirit was very strong and I think they were suprised how much spanish i was able to speak because I usually don´t get to talk much when we visit them. (Hno. Torres wouldn´t let me get away with not speaking).
We have some great investigators that are progressing, but still a pretty sad turnout at church this week. One of our newest investigators did come, but none of our others were there. We had to be on time this week, so we didn´t get the chance to pass by any of them which didn´t help. Noelia always wants to go to church but she can´t go unless her friend Rosa Chena (Inactivo) goes as well. Also we recently found out that her mom´s boyfriend that they are living with us doesn´t want us in their house anymore, so we are trying to figure out a way to teach her at Rosa´s house. That will also help them to be able to go to church together!
This week we also got a call from a member visiting the area who had a reference for us. He was actually a bishop in Uruguay around the time you were in Uruguay mom and dad. His name is Oscar Perez Rojas, and he was a bishop in Colonia Sacramento Uruguay, if that rings any bells. Just figured I would share that with you and see if you knew, o and the reference he gave us was very good too.
This week we had an experience that was new for Elder Spence even. We were waiting on the corner near our pension for a bus and someone pulled up and offered us a ride! We couldn´t talk to them very long and the cars behind them were going crazy, so they drove off... but they went around the block and pulled up again! Obviously you have to be very careful getting in the car with strangers, but they were an older couple and we figured we were safe. we talked to them for a bit and they were actually previous investigators and had a lot of great things to say about the church. We are plannign to meet with them again this week!
Also we started working in a new part of our area that we got as part of the division and had some great success! Just walking down the street we had several people contact US who were very interested. I think the area has been closed for a while, so there is lots of work to do and it is a great location because it is very close to the church. I think we will be doign a lot more work there.
Last off I just want to share something I learned in church this week. In spanish there are 2 verbs for "to know": conocer y saber. He talked about how with the gospel we often start off being acquainted (Conocer) with the principles etc., but that we should strive to strengthen our testimonies through study and prayer and put these principles to practice in our lives so we can know (saber). I know that I have grown so much here on my mission, and I have been greatly blessed in my studies. It is definitely one of my favorite times of the day! The Book of Mormon is so powerful, and has strengthed my testimony of the church and of my Savior so much. Also I have learned a lot about the power of prayer, and want to thank you all for your prayers for me and for missionary work in general. It is a great work and I have no doubt that the Savior is at the head of it.
I hope you all have a fantastic week and I can´t wait to hear from you again!
Elder Ian Wheelhouse