Saturday, August 4, 2012

The Office - Again.... FINAL LETTER! (Maybe)

Hey. So... I know today is only Saturday. And I know I´ll be home in like a week. Or like a week and a day. But yeah. Seeing as that I kind of use these emails as a kind of journal of sorts, I thought that while I have the chance I should probably make the best of it. 

So yeah. We had a pretty good week. Or should I say that I had a pretty good week. I kind of had a little bit of a mashing of companions for a while here. But, I had fun and tried to work hard for my last little bit of time here in the lovely land of Paraguay. 

Monday I wrote you all from out of town. We had to travel to find internet. But it was worth it. That night after working President let me know that he wanted me to come in as per usual on Wednesday even though I´d be waiting for dad to show up on Saturday. So, that was that. 

Tuesday. Spent the morning packing. I´m still a really slow packer. Did that for a while. Gave away tons of stuff to Elder Svedin. That came in handy later when I didn´t have enough time to effectively finish packing and so I had to just stuff everything in really quick. So, all my clothes are kind of wrinkly, but I managed to fit it all in a lot better than last time. The rest of the time during the day I just got to run around and say goodbye to people. It was a little weird because I plan on going back this week, but I didn´t want to really leave it up to chance either - it would have been really lame if I just disappeared and didn´t make it back, and thus never even gave a quick goodbye to anyone. So, I said my goodbyes. They were nice, but without tears or anything (for the most part) because we all are expecting me to go back soon. Managed to get all of the most important visits in. Probably my favorite visit was to the Zaracho´s. More than the goodbye itself or the fact that the Hermana started crying just because was just being able to notice the difference in them all. From the moment that we showed up to visit them, they just seemed really happy. Not that they weren´t happy people before, but they just seemed to have a different ¨glow¨ to them. That was really special to me. To see how the gospel has really made them happier. They were more talkative, more smiley, and everything. Really cool. Its been such a blessing to have been able to get to know them. They really gave purpose to the last part of my mission. It kept me focused, determined, and its really helped me to feel like I´ve come to a good conclusion. Rather than ending off just thinking about home or what we are going to do this week, it helped me to really be able to fulfill my purpose as a missionary. Now, I feel a little unprepared for this week running around with dad, but to me its totally worth it. I´m super thankful for the blessing that the Lord chose to give me at this time to have been able to meet and share the gospel with them. To end the day we got a ride with all of my stuff to the bus terminal. A bunch of the youth/guys were there to say goodbye. That was really nice too. I felt like people really appreciated the work that we were able to do in Saltos and that made me really happy.

That morning I met up with Elder Svedin´s new comp at the bus station in Asuncion. He finishes his mission in 2 weeks. Poor Elder Svedin. He has to ¨kill off¨ 2 missionaries in a row. Ugh. Hopefully it helps him to talk more and form stronger bonds with the members rather than just get himself trunky. I sincerly enjoyed my time with Elder Svedin. He´s a great guy. Hopefully we´ll be able to get together again after his mission (a LONG time from now. lol) and we can continue to have fun times together. 

That meant that after getting to the office in a taxi and sitting around outside the office all by myself for an hour or 2, the office Elders came and picked me up. Before I knew it, I was one of them again. haha. It´s been fun. For the last couple of days I´ve been running around with them, doing errands, and trying my best to help out. Its brought back a lot of good memories. They´ve even been nice enough to let me drive the van just like in the good old days. It´s been a blast. While I haven´t been helping them, I´ve been reorganizing all of my junk, working on my ¨Final Report¨ to give President, and... I dunno. Bugging the new office Elders. Thankfully they´ve been really patient with me so thats been nice. We´ve visited a bunch of people that I used to visit and stuff like that, and so the work has been good too. 

So yeah. Thats kind of been the week. Its been fun. Now I´m just waiting out Dads arrival. Today is P-day in the office and so we´re just kicking it. We´ll be out to go get lunch. Maybe I´ll reorganize some more. We´ll see. But yeah. I´m pretty excited about the week. We´ll be running around like crasy, but it will be great. We´ll be visiting friends, eating good food, seeing if there is anywhere to see, maybe buying some souvenirs. It´ll be good. 

But yeah. That is basically my summary for the week. It was a good one. More than that though, this is probably my last letter home. Thats strange to me. The time has really just flown by. Sure, some of the days seemed to drag on pretty long and everything, but the weeks went by fast, the months faster, and the 2 years have just passed by before I could hardly realize it. Its been quite the adventure. Good time, not so good times. Awesome times. Tons of great memories. But more than just an adventure, really it has been a super spiritually fulfilling experience. I can honestly see how I have changed and become a better person in the last 2 years. My testimony is stronger and I feel much more prepared for the next stage of my life. I don´t think that there is anything else that I have ever done in my life that has been so worth it, or that has helped me to change as much as being a missionary has. But even if I hadn´t changed at all, even if I had gained no personal benefit from this time here, it would have been worth it just to have been able to help so many people to come unto Christ and change their lives for the better. I´m so very thankful for the opportunity that the Lord has given me to be his servant for these years. To be able to do His work here in this great land of Paraguay. I know that this is His church, and His plan of happiness. I´ve seen how the Lord blesses those that will follow Him and do His will, and how those that choose not to do that in their lives are forced to fend for themselves. I know that He knows what´s best for us, and He always has seemed to bless me with that, even when it doesn´t appear that way to me. I´m so very thankful for all of the blessings that He has given us. I hope that I can always remember and cherish the moments that I have had here as a missionary, because I know that they can and will have a lasting impact on the rest of my life.

So. Thanks to everyone who reads my letters. It made me happy to hear that at least a couple people out there are interested in what I´ve been up to. I hope that what I´ve written has been at least somewhat inspirational and helpful and that you´ve been able to catch a glimpse of the work that we´ve been up to out here since I´ve been gone. Thank you for all of your letters, the packages, the love and the prayers. They have been much appreciated. I´m excited to see you all soon and share time together once again. I´m sad to have to leave behind this beautiful country and these people and friendships that I have made, but I am also very excited to be able to be together once again with all of you. Thanks for everything, love you all a ton, and have a good week. See you SOON!

Elder Humphreys

Monday, July 30, 2012

Saltos - Week 20

Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiii. So. This is it. I´m done with the letters. Thats weird. It went by so fast.... almost too fast. But yeah. Glad that the week went well and that everyones doing good. Just happy and waiting for me to get back... lol. But yeah. Lots to say. Little time.
This week went incredibly well. It was awesome to see how the Lord blessed us for working hard upuntil the end. We weren´t really expecting it, but in the end, we ended the week with 5 baptisms. What a great way to end up a mission. That meant that the week was pretty hecktic and we ran around a ton. But it was totally worth it. Its left me with a kind of spiritual hangover to start this week, after being on such a spiritual high last week, but I´m really happy.
Monday. I realized that my second last pairs of pants has another hole in the butt. Ugh. Thankfully they don´t have to last much longer. By the way dad. I don´t remember if I remembered last week, but another pair of contacts would be great. If you could.
Tuesday. We thought it out and I was talking with the zone leaders and we realized that the family we were working with could be baptized this week and that there was no need to delay. So me and my comp planned out every day and started teaching a bunch of stuff and doing a lot of preparations and verifying. The Zaracho family is awesome and super prepared and so it wasn´t all that tricky. Had some really long lessons and by about friday we had 3 solid baptisms lined up and good to go. That night we also had a super blessing as we passed by a member families house and they offered us dinner and we talked about their daughters baptism. She lives far away and so President had originally told us that she wouldn´t be able to get baptized. But, she called him up after talking, he realized that she was ready and should be baptized. So that was another person to work with. 4 baptisms this weekend.
Wednesday. Taught some long lessons. I also found 20 mil on the ground and so that made me really happy (its like finding 20 dollars but Paraguayan style).
Thursday. Same thing.
Friday. We were doing our weekly planning and realized that one of the other zaracho daughters was ready for baptism, and that we just hadn´t considered it because she hadn´t been to church very many times. But, one easy call to President and he said that it would be a reasonable course of action to have her baptized with her family. Wow. What a blessing. So. We had 5 interviews that day. Rough on the guy that had to come out and do all of the interviews, but totally worth it.
Saturday was the day of the baptisms. We spent all day working. Cleaning all the church by ourselves, cleaning out the font (that was really gross) and running around like crasy. Some good old physically demanding missionary work. But totally worth it. The baptism was awesome and really spiritual. It had tons of things that didn´t go according to plan, like nobody showing up on time, there not being enough baptismal clothes for everyone, the fact that I ripped the crotch of my pants, the fact that some of the baptismal clothes became seethrough when wet, and the fact that the water level dropped a lot right before the baptism, making the baptisms tricky. But in the end. Awesome. Really spiritual. They are great. Even payed their tithing right there at the baptism. I loved it. Elder Svedin did 2 and I did 2.
Sunday morning we went and had the last baptism in the river. Also really cool. I´ll have to send the pics later when I have more time. All of them came to church and were confirmed. Awesome. Great way to end.
Anyways. Today has been a little hectic. Still not sure when I go to Asuncion and how long I´ll wait it out here. Oh well. HAving fun. Super excited to run around and see dad.
Cool news about Elder Patterson, the wedding, hail and efy. Sad that I missed it. The church will pay for my second suitcase so no worries there. It makes me happy that you´re bringing stuff to give away. No need to be nervous. I´m here. :) It´ll be fun. We´ll make it work. Anyways. Thats it. Gotta run.
I love you lots. The mission has been an absolute blast. The Lord has blessed us and me so much and I´ve learned tons. I think I´ll try and write again something next Monday. But. For now I have to run. Thanks for the support and reading all of my letters! Love ya all and see you super soon!!!!!
Elder Humphreys

Monday, July 23, 2012

Saltos - Week 19

HEY! Hows everybody. So I was thinking and I realized that I´d be home soon and so it wasn´t worth writing much this week. lol. Okay, not really, but at the same time, i just spent a bunch of time talking with Elder Svedin about all of the crasy news and letters that he got and so now I´m short on time. As always. Glad to hear that everyone is doing well though.

Anyways. Our week was good. Changes news came on Monday. We were a little anxious but all is well. We stayed, and we were mercifully saved from being in a trio. Aparently President didn´t know that you wouldn´t be here till the 4th. i might sleep on the floor a night or two, but now he knows so we´ll make it work. Elder Schmidt is training. His kid is really cool.

Tuesday we did a division. Elder Svedin got stuck doing contacts all day. Aparently a lot of people were mean to him. Poor guy. Hope that once I´m gone and stop talking so much that he´ll have more time to practice. I talk way too much. Dang it. I had fun though. I left with Cleverson and we had a great day. Talked to Elder Patterson. Weird to think that he´s home...

Wednesday we had to go medicine shopping. Turns out that Elder SVedin got scabies or something like that. A little mite that lives under the skin. Thankfully we caught it early. Thursday he was in the house all day in bug killing cream with a member and I did another division. Apparently it was SUPER itchy. Hopefully we got it before it got passed to me.... lol?

Thursday was good. It was weird just being with a kid from the ward. Especially when we went to ward night and I was basically by myself with all the members. But I had fun. Got more work done. Lots of lessons with members this week.

Friday we got to teach the Word of Wisdom to an investigator that is looking to get baptized. Hard for her to give it up. But, in an act of faith we fetched the cigarettes from her house and she passed them off to me. So that was cool. Especially because that meant that I had a brand new pack of smokes in my pocket... jk. But that was a new experience. First time I actually almost had a descent opportunity to break the word of wisdom if I wanted. haha. Thankfully we weren´t tempted. We got to break them up and toss them into the river. Hopefully her habits are as broken up and destroyed as those smokes were. But I´m sure she´ll be able to do that.

Saturday was good. We got to visit the family that we´ve been working with. They are doing great. We visited them with members earlier in the week. They talked all in Guarani. Ugh. But it was good for them. Saturday we talked about the Plan of Salvation. The mom is really excited to be baptized, and the girls are following right behind. One even quit her job to come to church this week. Awesome. We had interviews and a really good lunch (thanks to President) that day too in the morning. That was good. He invited me to hold on strong till the end. I told him not to worry about it :). Also had to go to this awkward birthday party at Adrianas house. Thankfully we didn´t have to stay too long .Parties are no fun as missionaries. lol

Sunday was good. I gave my last talk. Talked about the members doing their part to help have real growth in the ward. I think it went alright. The Zaracho´s went and so they are looking really good for baptism next week. I´m really excited for that. Things are good here, and I´m having a blast, while still excited to run around and visit everyone.

Anyways. I gotta run. I love you all lots. Thanks for everything. Weird that I´ll be home so soon. Keep up the good work and have fun at your camps and cabins and whatnot. Love ya. Chau!

Elder Humphreys

Monday, July 16, 2012

Saltos - Week 18

HI! So. We had another good week. Actually, it went quite well. I hadfun. Its great and sad at the same time – it seems like the less time that Ihave left, the more success we´ve been having. We´re still looking for thatbaptism, but for the first time in a while it looks like we have a couplereally seguro (…ready…?) people lined up. So that’s been really great. We´rehaving fun. We´re kind of scared because we have changes coming up this week.Hopefully President doesn´t throw us a curve ball – I´d really just like tofinish here and hopefully I can just stay here with Elder Svedin. But we´llsee. Its in the Lords hands now. 
Anyways. Like I said. Good week. Monday was kind of a disaster. We were going to be done all on time, but then a member called us up and needed help. She stopped by while we were writing and told us about all of her marriage problems and how her husband was cheating on her etc. Ugh. Thats no fun. So we were fortunately able to help her out a bit. Convinced her not to do anything dumb and offered our help. So we were working with her and her family a bit this week. Its a bummer because the hermano should know better. But, we do what we can. That evening.... it was alright. We had helped the Hna and so we got out just on time but didn´t get to do our shopping. Had to jog out and get them Wednesday morningish.

Tuesday went well. Had cow stomach for lunch. I was the only one that ate all of it. One at most of it. The other shamelessly left it on his plate. Elder Svedin... he slipped it into his bag while nobody was looking. haha. At least he did his best to not offend them by not eating his food. lol. Then we had a nice long walk out to one of our main investigators. Shes doing really well, seeing a LOT of change in her life through the gospel. Thats nice to see. I also talked to her boyfriend - he was in jail. Apparently people in jail here have cellphones and everything. Ridiculous. Anyways, apparently he´s a member and everything so we had a nice long chat. He might get out this week. We´ll see if thats a good or a bad thing. Also shared with the Flia Zaracho. They´re doing great. More on that later.

Wednesday we had a fun little lesson when a guy walked in in the middle of the chat. He is a member from Ciudad del Este. Anyways, he talked our ears off and effectively ruined the lesson. Thankfully it was just with a less active member and was understanding. Somehow we just happen to be attracting slightly crasy people to us from all over the place. Had some good visits. Watched Together Forever with the family with problems. My favorite church movie. :) It was kind of awkward though because in the last moment they invited all of the youth from the ward over, AND the dads ex-wife was there with his kid. Weird. But, we made it work.

Fun stuff this week - not sure why but both me and my comp had random dreams with each others families. Apparently in his he came to visit us in Canada in one of his dads cars. He offered to let dad drive it and he refused, but Elder Svedin convinced him. Ya well, in the end, dad crashed it. hahaha. I thought that was funny, and commented that that specific car he was talking about (and deffinately does) cost more than our house. That wierded Elder Svedin out to hear - that was the exact same thing that I said in the dream. lol. So thankfully dream cars are cheaper than real cars or dad, you´d owe Elder Svedin 1.3 million or so. Try to be more carefull next time. lol.

Thursday we got to talk to Adriana again. Shes doing well. Lets just say that shes not married yet but she´s doing an awesome job of keeping ALL of the commandments. Her husband is getting pretty frustrated. She is even getting creative and having her niece over to visit for the night and everything. One of my best non baptized converts for sure. Ward night was a disaster but oh well. Everything else went swell.

Friday. Awesome lessons. We got some members over to visit the Zarachos and they just talked and talked and talked in Guarani. I didn´t understand a thing, but was happy. I think it helped them a lot. We also went back out to our far away investigator. She told us that she really wants to get baptized, because she knows its true. Ended the night accidently ending up and a big birthday party at the church. We left early. Parties here are lame. lol

Weighed myself today. Lets just say that you probably won´t recognize me anymore - I´m fat. As in 10 to 15 pounds extra. Ouch.

Saturday. Little bit of a disaster. The upside being that EVERYONE gave us food. We also got attacked by drunks all night long. I let Elder Svedin take care of the worst ones while I got the references of the better less drunk ones. haha. I don´t think Elder Svedin liked it, but it was effective. I liked it too because the drunks kept asking me if I was Chilean or Uruguayan or something. I take that as a compliment. I don´t seem too foreign anymore so thats nice.

Anyways. Sunday was great. 3 of the Zarachos went. The lady that lives far (Guillermina), and another person we recently found. Lots of people so I was happy. There were a ton of people in church too. It was crasy. So that was awesome. Got some more great visits done. The Zarachos are awesome. The more I look at it, the more I realize that the Lord sent us to their house at least 3 times before we took the hint. Its a bummer we didn´t notice sooner. But really, they are some super chosen and elect people and the Hna and a couple of the kids are really excited to get baptized. I´m sure the rest will follow. Awesome.

Anyways, all in all a great week. I think that it was the first time in my mission that I passed all of my goals (besides baptism), and we can really see how the Lord is blessing us. We´ll see how the changes go. But yeah. I´m out of time. On the computer and on the mission. All my clothes are worn out, one of my shoes are even growing mould (not sure, and the clock is winding down. But we´re giving it our all. We´ll see how the changes go. But, thanks for everything. Love you tons, and talk to you all next week. CHAU!

Cleversons baptism

Me and Elder Svedin in our matching shades

Elder Humphreys

Monday, July 9, 2012

Saltos - Week 17

Hello hello. Another week. Another adventure. Glad you had fun. We had a good week as always. Da gusto to be a missionary. Fun to think that we´ll have our own Crossfox. I think it´ll work well. I always thought they looked nice. Sorry. It´ll probably cost a little more. But I think it´ll be worth it. The roads here are just made of dirt, and so we´ll definately use the offroad capabilities, and then I think we´ll be doing some real road tripping and so I think a nice little crossfox should be able to get us around pretty fast. I´m assuming its faster than our van, and so if thats the case, we´ll get everywhere in no time. Weeeee. I miss Paraguayan driving. haha. As for the package - thanks again. I really wasn´t expecting anything so that was a nice surprise. Especially because I didn´t recognize the name of the person and I don´t know anybody from Montana and so that kind of caught me by surprise. lol. I´m also glad to hear that Toby is staying fit and that he gets the occasional walk. That you had a fun b-day week too. Sounds like a blast of stuff. Sad that I missed the Stampede again, but oh well. Weird to think that I even miss that disaster. lol. I can´t believe that there is another Spiderman too. Now I have soooooo many movies to catch up on. Good thing that there will be lots of time for that. Its funny because I had no idea who a couple of the people you were talking about are. Either you have tons of new friends, or else I´ve been away for so long now that I´m just forgetting people. lol. Oh well. Anyways, the week was grand. I spent the evening on Monday running around near my old area with one of my old office buddies, Elder Roberts. Great guy. I more just limped around though because my jammed toe from soccer was hurting like heck. But I survived. Got the late night bus back. It was funny because we met an American family in the terminal. She ended her mission in the south mission a month or two after I got here. Now shes married and back to visit with her husband. Weiiiird. I´m not ready to get married. Anyways, I slept like a rock on the way home. I was still suuuuper tired though. I only got like 6.5 hours of sleep in 2 days. Oh well. Worked anyways. I´ll have some sleep to catch up on when I get back. I got the the Terminal in Saltos really early and the guys were too lazy and tired to pick me up and so I had to wait it out there for a while. It was actually nice though because I got to see as the sun rose over Brazil and the river that runs between us. Really beautiful. Tuesday my toe was fortunately doing better. Its super bruised, but I walk fine. Its just not fun to kick things with it. Oh. And I remembered a funny moment that I had a weeks back - all over the places are little corner stores built into peoples houses. Well, the other week I walked in to one and it looked kind of funny. The lady came out and I talked to her for a second. Then I realized that they had shut down the store and I was just standing in some random ladies house. Oops. That was funny and awkwardish. What else. Oh yeah. So I´ve been meaning to write people back letters but I realized its too late. Dang it. So I guess if anybody had a question I think I´ll just try and answer it through this email and hopefully they notice it. For instance, the one that I can think about right now just had a really good comment about how we can take advantage of the atonement in our lives, even if we aren´t in serious need of repentance or are passing a really hard moment in our lives. Anyways, I was just thinking about that and I really liked it. It reminded me of this talk that I really liked from the April 2012 Liahonna by Elder Bednar. He talks about how we can use the atonement for 2 main purposes in our lives. Really cool. I reccomend it. What else though. Oh. We had a chance to talk with this family that we had found on Sunday. They are really cool, and appear really prepared to recieve the gospel. The Familia Saracho Gonzales. They are a family of 8. So we´ve been talking a bunch with them. Its really hard teaching that many people at a time. Especially when the dad doesn´t understand Spanish. So thats been interesting. I FINALLY got to give away the Guarani book of Mormon that I´ve been carrying around since the MTC. Hopefully we can use the members enough so that he can get his own testimony too. Wednesday. There were some big soccer upsets, putting the two biggest teams in Paraguay in the running fr the championship. But more on that Sunday. We had a cool moment we got to watch the restoration with some of our investigators. Love that movie. However, the day was kind of sad in the end - one of the less active members that we´ve been working with had been in Asuncion with his wife for a couple of weeks. She had been sick for a month or so. I actually gave her a blessing maybe 2 weeks ago. Anyways, I´ve been calling him to see how he´s been doing. On Wednesday morning I called and she had fallen into a coma, and then later that day he let me know that she had passed away. So that was pretty sad. Especially because he was doing everything he could to give up his smoking problems and such so that they could go to the temple. But yeah. He´ll be back tomorrow, and so we´ll be passing by to see what we can do to help. Hopefully he´s okay and we can help him feel better and stay on track. Poor guy. Thursday. NOt that much new. Tried to work hard. Had limited success. But thats how it goes. I don´t know if I remembered to mention it last week, but last week on the way home we ran into this drunk guy. I wasn´t going to pay him much attention until he started asking for help, and said that he felt like commiting suicide. That caught my attention. So I tried to find out where his house was, but he was too drunk to discribe it good. So I got him to walk us there. But, in the end he was WAY too drunk to walk straight and was stumbling everywhere. So, I sucked up my pride, and i grabbed him by the arm, and we walked to his house, either arm in arm or hand in hand depending on the moment. haha. We got some funny looks, but it was all I could do to find his house. Anyways, we shared with him a couple of times during the week. I´m not sure if he´s super interested, but he didn´t seem to get drunk like he normally would have, and he says he´s happier. And he didn´t commit suicide, so I´m happy. Worth the walk. Anyways. Gotta hurry. Friday we had kind of a rough day, but the highlight was the morning. We got to build a house. Or should I say a small shack. Well... I´ve seen dog houses that are nicer, but they were happy. lol. I had a blast. It was fun. Basically we just eyeballed and cut some scrap wood and really thin plywood and slapped it up. Its funny because they didn´t really want to measure or anything like that. It was full of gaps and terrible, but they didn´t seem to mind. Made me thankful for the house that I´ve been blessed with. And we had fun just helping out. Also had another good visit with the Saracho family. Satruday. Kind of normal. Sunday. Really cool in that we had 6 investigators in church. I think thats a new record. lol. That was cool. Some of the Flia Saracho, their neighbor, another lady we´ve been working with, and a friend of a member. So that was cool. The only bummer being that with the cold and whatever other excuse there could be, not many members were there. Oh well. Hopefully everyone wants to come back. But yeah. After church was the HUGE soccer game. Basically nobody was home. And then after the game, mad partying. Thankfully we thought ahead and did all of our studies at night to avoid the meyhem. Today we had our meeting. I think it went well. We played soccer. Probably my last time. Bummer because I didn´t really play very good but oh well. Hopefully I can find some people to play with when I get back. But yeah. Gotta run. Happy Birthday to CHLOE btw. Hope its grand!!! lol. Love you all very much, hope you have a good week, and talk to ya soon! Chau! Elder Humphreys

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Saltos - Week 16

Hello hello. Glad to be able to write this week. I´m in slightly unusual circumstances this week. But good ones. Strangely enough, I write you once again from one of my favorite computer/office spots in the world - thats right. My very own/former office desk. Ah. How I´ve missed this place. My home away from home. But I´ll explain later.
This week went really well for us. Monday I was without Elder Svedin. So I was going to have to go out with the other guys. But then in the middle of the day a recent convert/20 year old kid asked if he could go out with us. Jackpot. We went out and ran around for the night. That was the start of our success. Usually you only get a little done on P-day night, but somehow we managed to get a bunch more done. So that was good. Picked up Elder Svedin that night. Made it back alive with only a couple mishaps. Hes a good kid. I got lucky.
Tuesday. Had our district meeting and whatnot. It went okay I guess. I´m not the best district meeting teacher. But, that afternoon we went and got to work. Got a bunch done again. Crasy. Had a couple good successfull days in a row. Left with the same kid. Went great.
I don´t know if you´ve been noticing the news but there has been a little unrest here in the country lately. Thankfully, it has had basically no effect on us at all. The only possible thing being that if they stop shipping gas into the country, me and my comp might have to hitch a horse and buggy back to town. I´m not going to lie... we´re super excited. haha.
Wednesday. Our lunch visit fell apart on us for the second day in a row. But we didn´t let that slow us down. That day I did a division in the other area of Saltos.... things are going a little rougher over there. So... we basically just talked to strangers all day and hopefully found somebody that will progress in the future. It was fun. A little challenging when people don´t want to let you in and you have no back up sit down plans. But, it went well. Thanks to a full day of contacting new people, I was able to reach the goal we have of talking to people during the week. So that was good. I learned a couple of things from Elder Schmidt, and hopefully he learned a thing or two from me too.
But yeah. Back to my area. Thursday. Another great day. We took a gamble and took a really long walk to talk to somebody in the morning. Thankfully we remembered to call this time and so it all worked out. Great. Then we had ward night, which usually takes a lot of the wind out of our lesson teaching sails, but somehow, we were able to have another quite successful day. Really, we could see the Lord blessing us this week. Met lots of new people, and were able to share with many about the gospel. Always is great to be able to do that. That night the ward activity kind of fell apart, as the people that were supposed to be there never showed up, and we weren´t able to plan the cool activity that we wanted to do. But oh well.
Friday. Another pretty good day. Met lots of new people. The people that we already knew are doing decently well also. Adriana is still SUPER actively involved in the church and such. Her husband... still not really at all. Oh well. We keep praying and hoping we´ll be able to find a way to help him change.
Anyways. I mismanaged my time this week and so I have to hurry. Saturday had a really cool experience. We got to talk with Cleverson. He was going through a really hard time. But he told us that he took our advice and prayed to know what to do. Later that week he quit his job so that there is nothing that could keep him from going to church on Sunday, and the Lord blessed him so that his family didn´t even get super mad at him like he thought that they wood. More details to the story, but it was really cool to see how by his faith his prayers were answered. He´s awesome. He shared with us his feelings and thanked us for all of our words and guidance. Apparently he keeps a journal of all of the important things that we tell him and how they have blessed him. Awesome. Almost got me tearing up. Almost...
Sunday was good. Not as many investigators as we had hoped for, but a good turn out anyways. Cleverson got called as the Executive Secretary of the ward. He makes his missionaries proud. Then after going to go out and work, we had another miraculous day and found a couple cool families to teach and work with. In the end, we had one of the most successful weeks of my time here in Saltos for sure, and maybe even in the last while in my mission, at least as far as the numbers show. So that was great. I´m not quite sure why the Lord decided to bless us so much, but we´re planning on doing everything that we can to keep the ball rolling.
Happy birthday to Grandma Humphreys this week! Also, sorry to write so late, but Happy Canada day too!!!
Today was really cool. They decided to have a special meeting for all of the zone and district leaders here in Asuncion. It was really good and I´m excited to apply it. But the other thing I really loved was just that the majority of my favorite missionaries were there. It was just like a big sweet family reunion. We got to play soccer, and we played as the team of old oficinistas. We kicked butt, only losing one game. So much fun, even though I did get my big toe nail kind of destroyed. It also meant that I got my letters and packages more early than normal. That was awesome. I love the package so much, especially because I wasn´t expecting anything more to come for me. It was super fun too. We had a blast trying to guess the numbers and figure it all out. Great stuff. Thanks!!!
I´m excited. Fun stories for the week. Fun choir meal, congrats on the Elementary grad, the fun hotel search, more awards (Great job), and crasy Triathalon stories. I enjoyed it. Have fun.
Anyways, I gotta run. Thanks for everything. Love you all a bunch. Have a great week! CHAU!

Elder Humphreys

Monday, June 25, 2012

Saltos - Week 15

Hola. Hows life everybody? Thanks for the update. Sounds like you´re all having fun.

We had a pretty cool week here. It doesn´t really show through the numbers we got, but really its the changes and help that really count if you ask me.

Monday was good. Pretty tranquilo P-day. We went out and got to work in the evening. Had a really cool lesson with this couple that we are working with: Francisco and Marisel. Neither of them are members but they have been to church 3 and 2 times respectively. They really like it. She knows that its true. He´s having a little bit of a hard time giving up his Catholic beliefs and such, but they are coming along. They really liked church last week. She told us about how she had learned about the importance of the law of chastity. So we got to talk about families and them getting married and such. It went really well. A couple days later she told us that she had read the pamphlet and that it had brought her to tears of happiness and of wanting to repent for living together. So hopefully they can get that worked out soon. She really wants to get married. He wants to, but isn´t in too much of a rush. They would of come to church this week but had to take a surprise vacation with his work or something and to visit his mom. Oh well. Next week.

We also had a fun moment where we found one of the members dogs in front of our house. It had got lost but somehow knew where we lived. It didn´t want to follow us to his house. But then when we went in our house it just barked and scratched at the gate. So we got frustrated and I had to walk the dumb dog home by his collar. Its funny because the streets are really territorial here. Its like living in the dog version Compton or Brooklyn or something. haha. So I had to walk in home, almost dragging it through the sketchier parts while Elder Svedin practiced his baseball skills and scared off all of the gangster street dogs with rocks. He almost killed one or two. Needless to say, that was an adventure. Something that I had never imagined that I would do on my mission. lol.

Tuesday we almost spent the whole day on the bus. It left at 8. We got there at 12:30. Had a 2 hour meeting. Got on the 3:30 bus. Got back at 8ish. Ugh. But, thats the life. I actually really like bus rides now. The part that was the worst was that they were showing movies the whole way there, and then some movies and music on the way back. Way distracting and not really spiritually uplifting. I did catch up on some of my reading though in Preach My Gospel so that was nice. The conference on the other hand was just grand. Thoroughly enjoyed it. We learned about how to meet the South America Souths goals, how to have better ward councils, and the importance of working with the men and fathers of the families. Great stuff that we applied later in the week.

Wednesday was a little bit of a bummer. Most of our plans went right down the drain when a couple of things got mixed up. Adriana is still doing great though. And her boyfriend agreed to get married!!...... in December. Noooo. So now we have to try even Harder to talk with him. She´s being a great missionary though. She brought her cousin to church with her again this week, and so we´re working with her too. Thats awesome.

Thursday was a little rough too. We made a sacrifice to go visit someone that lives a ways away. And... she was sick. Dang it. Then we had the ward activity that night and so there went most of our time. The president didn´t show up either and so our plan of watching a movie fell through. So I had to make a last minute game plan, and we played some gospel pictionary kind of thing, and made a game out of memorizing a scipture. Close one. Apparently we should have made a bigger emphasis in memorizing the reference too though because I can´t remember where it is. lol. ¨Let no man dispise thy youth, but be an example of the believers.....¨

Friday we had some really good plans. Most of them fell through as well (lame), but we were able to make the best of it and do a bunch of visits that we had needed to do, but just didn´t have time for. So that was nice. Cleverson is going through a little bit of a rough patch with work and his family and stuff and so we were able to share with him which was nice.

Saturday was really cool. We cleaned the church but it went really quick with everyones help. Then after our studies we got out to work. We went over and were talking with Adriana about how we were going to be able to ¨get at¨ her husband. Well, at that exact moment he showed up from work. I wasn´t sure what to do, but I remembered the example that President had given us at the meeting we had had about just asking for a little time and then giving a solid testimony to try and get their attention. So before he could run away, I told him we just wanted to talk a little bit. He still ended up walking away, and we thought we had lost. But he came back out in a couple of minutes. At first it was a little bit rough going, but after a little bit we were able to get a little flow going. Promised lots of blessings. Talked about the need he had to take action and know for himself. About WHY we were getting Adriana so excited and demanding to get married. In the end I think it went really well. He accepted the invitation to get baptized when he knows its true, and we had a nice little kneeling prayer at the end that he gave. The only bad thing being the fact that they neighbour had his music SUPER loud the whole lesson. You could hardly hear Elder Sveding when he was sharing. But, nothing you can do. Thankfully the spirit speaks louder than words. Hopefully we see some progression there.

After that we went and bought a bunch of stuff. We´re all out of money, but fortunately I had some personal money and I took out some more today. We bought the stuff for an investigator who is going to quit smoking. We had some goofy stop smoking lesson and hopefully if he sticks to it and uses the stuff we gave him he´ll be able to stop by the end of the week. For good. So that was nice. I really think he can be a great leader in the future. Recent convert that has fallen away for a bit because of work and the smoking problems, but is willing to do anything to come back.

We also got to give this large print bible to a members grandma that night. She absolutely loved it. lol. That was fun.

Anyways, I´m basically out of time. Sunday was good. Adriana and her cousin went to church. Francisco was out of town. But, thats how it goes. I had to teach the class and give a talk with little preparation, but oh well. People said that they went alright. or decent. Or good. I don´t know. We finally had ward council and so we also got to apply all of that. Hopefully we get more support from all that.

But yeah. Gotta run. Luckily I had some time here and so you didn´t have to wait. Have a great week and write you again next Monday (hopefully). Love you lots! Chau.

Elder Humphreys