Monday, December 12, 2011

¡Navidad se acerca! (Christmas is coming)

Buen Día Amigos y Familia,

I am doing pretty good this week. We were so-so successful this week because we are having some problems with our investigators just keeping their commitments. On Saturday night we thought that we were going to have a bunch of people at church with us because we were rockin the references and almost did half our goal for the week in one day! But unfortunately, sometimes Latinos just like to say "yes" and don´t do too much about it. That´s why it is kinda hard to misionar(the verb for "to do missionary work", yes it is a real word) sometimes here. For some of our investigators, they are part of part member families and they don´t really feel too much about the church and really just need to humble themselves a bit, so my companion and I came to the conclusion that the best approach is to pray for trials directed towards them. Nothing too hard, just some burdens that they will not be able to bear themselves.

I am still getting trying to get the hang of the language but every week I am definitely seeing progress. If there was one thing that I could wish for, it would be just to be able to understand what the natives are trying to say to me. I can always fumble around in my own words and still get the point across but I would be able to teach a lot more if I could understand them better. We have been spending time with this one member family(actually it is one of the part member families, we are trying to talk to their sister Rosa who is just lost in her life right now) that has been helping me a lot with the language. Before I came to Argentina, people were telling me that the Spanish in Argentina is very beautiful and almost sounds like they are singing the language. Correction. That only applies to certain people because I have heard some terrible slurry Spanish and I have heard some that is just fun to listen to because they tone up and down a lot when they are talking. I have also noticed how a lot of gringo Elders that are about to go home haven´t really picked up to good of an accent. My goal is different, I hope to leave looking and sounding like a Mendocino. Eh, we´ll see. Ha.

I am still getting used to the Spanish Church here. It is so different to hear everything in a different language in all the meetings! I think I was supposed to give a talk in Sacrament meeting yesterday but it ended up that there was a primary program. Oh boy was that a treat. You know how they are really funny to watch when you are in Utah, well it gets just about tripled when you come to Argentina. Ha. All the kids are so funny because none of them knew what they were doing and it appeared like it wasn´t very well prepared. But nonetheless, it was a very good sacrament meeting. I just wish we could have had some of our investigators there to enjoy it with us. Oh well, next week! One other thing that is different is that Argentines do not have very good voices. A lot of times they don´t have anyone that plays the piano so they just sing A´capella and it does not sound very good... ha ha. My comp plays piano well so maybe I will dust of the good ol´ piano skills a bit and play some Himnos while I am here. Lucía, the old crippled lady that we baptized last week is doing amazing! She is so spiritually strong right now that she could move a mountain. She knows a lot and wants to help us out in the missionary work because she has some friends that she knows that need this in their lives. Superb!

Dang, I can´t believe there are already Christmas parties going on. Isn´t it like 95 degrees outside...yep, it every day...Ha ha. We as a companionship are acually dreaming of a White Christmas. How could this be? you ask. Well, we actually are planning to have a few baptisms on December 24th. I wanna be dressed in all white on that day, so we are going to try our hardest to get these people feeling the spirit and knowing how important being baptized is. One thing that really helps in the missionary work is being bold and we are going to do just that.

The verdict is that they do not allow Skype-ing in this mission. It has something to do with obtaining the number or code for the U.S. or somethin. I don´t know. I will be calling though for sure and I will follow up with more information at a later time.

That is really awesome that Brandon is finally gonna leave and be a missionary. I bet he is just dying to get to be in the MTC for 3 months learning Ruso. Good luck to him!

Well, this is about all that I have time for this go-around. The Spiritual Thought of Elder Larisch this week is going to be more of a Spiritual Compromiso for you. Do missionary work! It helps out the missionaries SO much when you as a member are helping them out in their full-time work. Always remember that you have also partaken of the fruits of this Gospel and have the knowlege that others are searching for. Share your testimony with others. When you see missionaries, go up to them and give them a reference to someone who is maybe going through a hard time or who is going through important times in their life like a marriage or death or a newborn. A lot of times, that is when people may be searching the most for help with burdens and challenges. How amazing is the gift of the Atonement that we can be relieved of our burdens. Go and share this! Every member a missionary, as some general authorities would say it.

Thanks for all of the prayers and support. It is amazing how I can just feel the love. Lo envio atras donde vino, a mi familia y amigos.

Con Amor,

Elder Larisch

¡La Iglesia es verdadera! ¡Sin duda!