Monday, November 28, 2011

Primer Bautismo? I think so...!


Well, I am able to attach some pictures. If I were to attach all of the ones that I wanted you to see it would take a super long time and that is exactly not what I have as a missionary are some pics for now. ¡Disfruten! This week was overall just a grade A week. The highlight of the week was by far Friday! What a day! I´ll start off with Friday.

Alright so at first it was just one of those days until just about after the ciesta(oh yeah, and by the way, the Argentines all take a ciesta every freaking day from like 1:00 to más o menos 4:00, just depends on the person. So it is very hard to contact people and catch people at that time of the day. It is also very very very extremely pretty hot at that time of the day and every other time of the day right now. It is very hard to find myself when I am not soaking wet...I know kindof gross, but that´s the way things are down here. Everything is kindof gross in my area. Oh yeah, and back to the other sentence...) then we started having success, we must have been doing something right. ha ha. We were able to talk to a few less active members and hear their stories and really befriend them and teach and invite them back to church. They didn´t come yesterday but we´ve got some pretty high hopes for them this week. The most awesome part of my mission so far to this point definitely happened at about 5 or 6 en la tarde that day with one of our progressive investigators, Lucía. She is this Señora that has been visiting with the missionaries for over two years and has gotten close to baptism but has never had strong feelings about getting baptized and has a lot of doubts about some of the doctrine. We arrived at her house and she told us that she didn´t really want us to come back because she has so many doubts and she doesn´t think that this is gonna work out. My comp É. Hudgens talked her into having just one more charla(discussion) with us. It is often hard to talk her into something, but this time I can surely bear testimony that we walked into that house holding the spirit of God with us. We had made a plan for her, and it was simply about how the gospel is supposed to be something really simple. We had a few scriptures to back it up for more understanding and after a bit I felt like she was starting to understand our purpose in helping her a bit more, but she was just missing something. While she was searching through her Bible that she had supposedly found something that was causing doubts for her with the Book of Mormon and all, I knew that she wasn´t going to find anything very valid. During that time I had that feeling or still small voice as some people call it. But this time it was a lot stronger and it was bringing things back to my memory that I learned in the MTC. I felt to ask her to see if she has prayed to know if José Smith was a true prophet of God. Very surprisingly her answer was a simple "no". So then obviously our next step was to commit that lady to pray to know, but even better is to actually pray with her to see if she actually does it right. She told us that she would do it but she needed to know how important for her it was in this prayer to keep it very simple and just ask one simple and specific question "Heavenly Father, was José Smith a true prophet of God" and I had the faith to tell her that if she prayed with real intent, she was going to receive an answer just like the scriptures say. She didn´t quite get it after the first prayer, so I made her pray again and after we were just going to take some time for silence so that she can stop and notice those feelings and the Holy Ghost change her life and truly testify to her of these truths. I won´t describe too much else, but it was surely one of the most powerful experiences in my life. The spirit is a wonderful thing. She commited to be baptized this next Sábado Dec. 3rd. I am so happy for this lady, that after more than two years she has finally felt these feelings of hope and peace in her life. I think they are going to give me the opportunity to baptize her because I´m new. That would be pretty cool, but hard too because she has a very broken leg(health care is reeeeeaaaallly bad down here). But a good experience nonetheless! Well, I hope I haven´t bored you with this. It was sure worth the time for me writing this history down. Ha.

Okay, let´s see what else have I been able to experience this week. Oh yeah, and after the visit with Lucía we were able to find two new families that are just golden. One whose son just passed away in an accident and is in desperate need of help from the Evangelio(gospel) and the other who has a big family and kids that are just crazy but she is really really happy when she is talking to us nevertheless and she wants us to teach her. Golden!!! A couple of our other families, the Familia Tejada and the Familia Cruz are being pretty hard with us right now. They both have one member of the church in their family but they don´t seem to talk much and know too much about Gospel things. I hope that we can keep teaching them and bring them to church to progress!

Oh yeah, the humorous highlight of the week is this crazy Bolivian Guy(there are tons of Bolivians in my area because they all come down here and rent casas to harvest all these crops with the farmland) that loves finding us when we walk next to his area and he talks to us about the most far out things ever. The first time we met him we thought he was going to rob us or something but he just wanted to tell us that he has been studying about the vida naturaaaaaaaal(emphasis on the "a"). He talked to us about he has found out new insights about the sun and the air and the water. Elder Hudgens asked him if he had been studying the earth and the fire also. He said "No! Fire comes from man........wait, yes also fire". Ha ha. Then he went off on some tangent about that because of Noah in the Bible he does not have to wear a tie. Then the next day he talked about more nonsense false doctorine stuff in the Bible. He would´t really listen to us, so he was just a waste of our time.

Thanksgiving this week was definitely not the same, it actually may have been one of the hardest days of the mish so far because we just planned all day long!! The mission is basically wanting us to revolutionize the way we plan so to start and practice and get good we are going to have to plan for 6 to 9 hours...yeah, it´s the truth. It was one of the longest days I have ever lived, no doubt. I didn´t even get any mail that day, I guess nothing has quite arrived here yet. Must take a while...

Oh yeah, and in the last letter I forgot to tell you about the dogs of Mendoza. There are perros EVERYWHERE!!! I guess the story is that the Argentines feel bad for the dogs because they can´t feed them and care for them but they don´t want to kill them, so they just let them loose to roam the streets. And I wish that you could just be in my area to really see how many there are.

The language and culture shock are starting to slow down and not be as big of worries. I am slowly being able to understand more of the people and am able to teach a lot more of the lessons that we teach. It is pretty cool to see how the spirit works with the gift of tongues also. I still haven´t had to give people kisses on the cheek but it seems to be a pretty popular way of saying hello. That´ll take some gettin used to... The people here are all awesome. They are all very nice. You can just go and talk to anyone and start talking about anything! It is really cool! My first time in a full on spanish ward was yesterday, it was a pretty cool experience! Got to meet all of the members. The ward is pretty big for Argentina, it has about 100-150 members.

The mission life is very very hard and sometimes not very fun at all but overall it is the most awesome thing that I could be doing right now in my life. I hope that everything is just going awesome at home and everyone is staying outta trouble. Thanks for all the prayers and support. Send me some letters of something so I can have some encouragement or something. Ha ha.

Con Amor,

Elder Larisch

La Iglesia es verdadera!