Dear family and friends,
Well... the summer heat is back unfortunately, at least for a couple more weeks. I guess I will just have to try to enjoy it while I can. Still not moved into our new place yet either but we got a call from the offices this week saying the papers finally went through and we should be moving in in the next couple of days. How FUN! We recently got back from our Zone Activity today. We had planned to play some sports on the "beach" a.k.a. the shores of Rio de la Plata (I could almost see Uruguay) but we got there to find that it was high tide and the beach was full of water (and DISGUSTING WATER at that). BUMMER!
This week started off GREAT. Monday night we had a great appointment with Dario. We talked about the Restoration y Baptism and invited him to be baptized on the 26th of February. We have a lot to teach in that period of time, but he is very prepared y understands really well the importance of recieving an answer from God for himself if the things that we teach are true. At the end of the lesson he told us that it is not just coincidence that he found his family y we found him at the same time. We are keeping frequent contact with him y were a little sad when we found out he would be staying with his adopted family in Quilmes for the weekend and wouldn´t be able to make it to church Sunday. But to our suprise on our way to the church that morning we saw him with his family just getting off the bus.
Tuesday and Wednesday morning I spent in "Platanos" again doing an intercambio with Elder Sanchez. He and his companion are still not getting along, and everything I had heard told me Elder Sanchez was causing the problems. Tuesday morning after district meeting the zone leaders and I had a little sit down with him to hear his side of the story. The intercambio was also a great opportunity to see how well he works in his area and to get to know him a little better. We actually had a really successful day, and I enjoyed working with him. I found that he is a really good Elder who is trying to do what he is supposed to. At the same time he does have several issues that make it a little hard for him to get along with people... We talked a little more about the situation with his companion and I tried to help him figure out a way that he could finish off the transfer in the best way possible. Hopefully things will get a little better! On top of that today I found out that one of the other companionships in my district is having some major problems y almost got into a fight last night... so on top of moving this week I imagine I will have to do something about that. I am sure there is plenty to learn from all of this, but it can sure be discouraging sometimes!
Saturday we had a nice long service project. A week or so ago we were walking down the street when a guy out in front of his house painting some boards called us over to talk to him. He said "Finally the Elders came to my house to visit me!" After talking a little bit we found out that his mom is a member in a different Stake. We offered to help him with the painting or if he needed help with anything else and he told us that if we wanted to do some work we could come back on Saturday to help him build something. We set an appointment for Saturday morning bright and early y showed up right on time to find that he was still sleeping! After about 45 min of waiting for him to wake up y get dressed y drink his mate, we got to work. I got my hands all blistered up pretty good swinging a pick around y shoveling dirt to poor a big concrete pad in front of their house. We had a great chat getting to know him and he had several questions about the church as well. He has his wife y 4 kids... a 7 month old baby, 2 year old daughter, 4 year old son, and a 10 year old daughter. (See foto) Apart from his family, almost the whole family of his wife lives in the same house (parents, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, etc.) y we are looking forward to passing by again soon y having a good chat with them!
Yesterday we had Stake Conference which was fantastic. We had 3 investigators show up that we weren´t expecting at all! Dario, the father of a girl who sings in the stake choir who we have been working with, and an investigator that I still dont know who recently returned from vacation in the coast. There were some great investigator friendly messages talking about Testimony y about how the Gospel blesses families. I think just about every single person there got up to go to the bathroom at least once at some point during the 2 hour conference. A little distracting... but we were able to talk with our investigators afterwards and they all said they had really enjoyed the messages that were shared y the music.
Well, thank you to all of you who wrote me this week! and as always to all of you for your prayers! Hope you all have a fantastic week and a happy Valentines day!
Elder Ian Wheelhouse