Dear family and friends,
It has been a fantastic week here in Wilde! After a hot week today is nice and cloudy with a bit of rain to cool things down! I have been a bit sick all week with a cough... but hopefully I am just about over it. Hard to believe we are already a week into November! Lots has happened this week... and I hope the stories make sense because there are so many details I want to include, but even then I know it just wont be the same as living it!
This week we had a couple really awesome experiences. Wednesday started off as a not so great day... I was sick in the morning and a member kid that was supposed to accompany us to some citas ended up not being able to go. We ate a decent lunch in the pension and I was able to take some medicine and rest for a min which helped, then it was off to work again for the afternoon. Very hot humid day. All our plans fell through and we recieved a call from a family we were supposed to have a Noche de Hogar with that night saying they would have to reschedule it for another day. We eventually ended up at the house of a member whose grand daughter is one of our investigators and had a good visit with them. As we finished up talking outside and as we were about to leave... out of nowhere it got super dark and cloudy and started raining on us. I told my comp we had 2 options... we could run back to the pension (15 blocks) to get our umbrellas/rain stuff... or we could run 5 blocks to the house of a member and visit them and hope for the rain to pass. We started heading for the pension but right then the rain started pouring hard and we decided to make the shorter trip to the members house. Apparently that morning the mom of the family (Hna Espinola) had talked with one of their neighbors whose kids Emanuel 12 y Lautaro 9 have been listening to the lessons and coming to church for several months and want to get baptized, but the parents arent sure if they want to let them get baptized y in the past havent shown much interest in coming to church y finding out WHY their kids want to get baptized. Anyways, that morning apparently Hermana Espinola had talked to the mom of the family (Soledad) and felt something was wrong and after talkin for a while Soledad asked if the hermana could say a prayer for her. Apparenlty her mother in law (Carmen) has been very sick and she was having a really hard time. After saying the prayer she felt to tell her about priesthood blessings of comfort and asked if she would like to recieve one when Hno Espinola got home later that night. She accepted and the Hermano ended up getting home earlier that night than usual because they had several cancelations of trucks they were supposed to recieve at work that day. As the Hermano got home apparently they said... "too bad the missionaries arent here right now to go over and give the blessing to Soledad". We happened to show up several minutes later thanks to the rain and we had a great lesson with the mother, Emanuel, Lautaro, y oldest daughter Miriam (18) before giving the blessings to Soledad y Miriam. (Miriam has been helping take care of her grandma Carmen who is sick who lives across the street) The Spirit was very strong and Soledad asked if we could come back the next day to go give a blessing to Carmen as well. We made plans to pass by the next day as well and Soledad said she was feeling much better. We went over to give the blessing to Carmen who was laying in bed and apparently hasnt been able to eat or sleep or anything lately y isnt able to get up and do things for herself. Hermano Espinola gave the blessing and blessed her that the sun would come up the next day and she would be able to recover her strength to be able to sit up on her own and start eating food that she needs to be able to recover. Great people with great faith! After giving the blessing to Carmen we were able to have a great lesson with Soledad y her family and she told us that she was going to come to church this Sunday (her y Lautaro came, hope to see the rest of the family next week!). We were able to pass by Saturday night to visit Carmen and sure enough she was sat up in her bed and told us that she had been able to eat and sleep and was feeling a lot better! She also asked if we could share a message with her and her husband Antonio... who actually turned 65 that day! We talked briefly about the Restoration and Prayer y invited them to start praying together. I am still amazed to see how everything worked out so perfectly that we were able to be there for that family right when they needed us. We had gotten to the point where we didnt know what to do with the family because if the parents dont want the kids to get baptized there isnt much we can do... but I have come to realize that God is aware of the needs of all his children y knows just what it takes to open their hearts to recieve His gospel!
Also this week we got back to the pension one night and a neighbor lady we have never talked to before called me over to ask us a question. She asked "What happens to our children when they die?" and went on to tell us that on Nov 1 her son was robbed and thrown in front of a train and killed, and that her husband had died 2 years ago as well. Very sad situation, and you could tell that she had suffered a lot from not knowing what really happened to her loved ones who had passed away. As my companion and I taught and testified of the Plan of Salvation and that she could see her family again one day y be with them forever, the Spirit really hit me and it is always amazing to feel the love that our Heavenly Father has for each of His children. She thanked us for the comfort and told us she would be talking to us again soon.
This week we were also able to find the rest of the family of Roberto. He seems to be doing really well and is content that his family is listening to us now as well! Apparently this week he recieved news that his son that is in prison will probably be released soon and be able to come home. (Not sure about the whole story still... but apparently he is innocent.) We still havent seen any of them in church yet... his older daughters apparently like to go out dancing Saturday nights and dont get home until 10 in the morning on Sunday and obviously sleep all day. They were a little harder to teach... and didnt seem really interested in talking about God with us... but by the end of the lesson one of them told us that she was interested y had lots of questions. We told Roberto that they were all invited to church, y he promised they would all be there one day. We asked about his daughters who always go dancing and he told us... "they will only go dancing if I SAY they can go dancing". Great man, and always fun to visit his family. Also his son Facundo is learning to cut hair and I took advantage of the opportunity y got a free haircut one night after our visit! He actually did a really good job. I only had 10 pesos on me which he wouldnt even accept but eventually he took the money and went and bought a coke to share with everyone.
Anyways, I think thats about it for this week! Things are going really well and we are hoping to be able to set some Baptismal dates with some of these FAMILIES here in the near future!!! Hope I can be around to see their baptisms! We are hoping to see 10+ people in church this next week!!! Thank you for your thoughts and prayers!
Elder Ian Wheelhouse