Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Pigs and Singing Drunk Men (Rhys)

WoooWooooWooooWoooooWoooooooooo!

Just on a little bit of a spiritual high right now from yesterday, which will be explained in a little bit after I explain how my week kind had some sick moments, but overall stunk until yesterday, which, now that I think about it was actually the first day of THIS week so yeah, it did all kind of stink, except for some cool things.

Wed-nes-day!!!!! or wait. . ..  that may have actually been Tuesday..


Tuesday!!! we had an awesome service project for most of our zone, not all of them because some of them live kind of out there in another city called Avellaneda and so it was just for those of us here in Reconquista. BUT, we all got together and here we have little shirt/bib things for Manos Qué Ayudan (helping hands) that we use when we do service in big groups so it looks all cool and official and awesomely Mormon-ey. We walked a long little while over to this small little house that was just outside of the city centro, but kind of looked like it was in the middle of no where if you stood with the city to your back. There were lots of horses and tall grass and tree/bush things. Oh, it was also raining the whole time, so lots of that, and mud too. So we helped a family take down an old pig pen thing structure whatchamacallit and moved all the stuff over to a spot that had a cement base and rebuilt a new little pig pen thingy out of the supplies we had taken apart (tree branches, sheet metal, metal grating, wooden planks, wire, etc.) and once we got that all done, it was time to find some pigs. Because the reason we did this in the first place was due to the dastardly escape of these pigs from their previous pen and now we had go and herd them into the new pen. So we got sticks and headed out together to find these pigs. Just before we did, this drunk guy comes wandering up to our group out of the middle of nowhere and volunteers to help us. Who are we to turn down someone's help? So we had this really crazy drunk guy running off on his own to find pigs.  We also figured he wanted to volunteer in the first place because that's all we could understand of what he said, he was speaking some Spanish and then some shafanhaphshawl (Something like that) and he sang a lot too. But while looking for pigs, there were a few false calls that turned out to be a drunk guy crawling on all fours through the trees like Rambo and talking/singing. In the end we had to leave to our lunch appointments before we could actually find the pigs, there was only one sighting. I was with Elder White and a few other Elders when Elder White sees the pig and smacks it with a stick to get it in the right direction. But let me tell you something about this pig. You all know the movie Babe. We've probably all seen pigs before, I know I have, but I've never seen a pig the size of this pig before. This beast was at least as big as our kitchen table at home and this big black pig took off after one smack from Elder White and we never saw it again.
no 
Quick, side note, no I don´t actually have pictures of the service activity, no pig, no drunk man, no mud covered missionaries, nada. But hopefully I'll be able to get one of the other Elders/Sisters that do have pictures to send me some.

And as for the rest of the week, me and my comp have been trying to find news a lot all week and ppppppppppppttttthhhhh. It really stunk. The end

Elder Enright

P.S. Until yesterday when we had a conference with two other zones and president and it was awesome and I have been on a spiritual high since the ride home when Myself and a few other elders were just talking in the back of the bus about our areas and the zone and the mission and everything and it was awesome. 

Monday, February 24, 2014

"He's got the sassiness, he's got the perfect hair, is there anything Jesus can't do?" (Bayley)

^ Possibly my favorite investigator quote of all time.  But I'll get to that.

First of all - I got to go to the temple this last week!  AHHHH I love the temple.  There is something truly magical about going there, and it brings me more peace than anywhere else on earth.  Seriously.  As many of you may know, stressing out is a talent that I always have possessed, and this week was no exception to that, but when I'm at the temple, it's like physically impossible to stress out.  No joke.  I tried, trust me, but you just can't be stressed out at the temple.  Which is why sometimes I feel like I just go there and live there for like weeks on end, but unfortunately that's not the way it works.  But at least I got to go there for a day.  Going to the temple just makes life easier.  It renews you and strengthens you and reminds you of what is really important.  

And so, in accordance with this, my determination to work harder, I returned to my area to make the attempt.  Starting with: contacting.  So here's the thing about missionary work - I know that everyone around me, EVERYONE, is a child of God and needs to learn about his gospel.  That's just a fact.  And since we're the ones who share that particular message, we need to talk to everyone - EVERYONE.  Seriously.  Like that guy walking his dog.  The people washing their car.  That lady out walking to work.  Anyone and everyone.  We talk to them all - or "contact" them all (mission lingo). And sometimes...it's awkward.  Probably the most awkward contact of the week would be when I went up to these two girls and after referring to them as such realized that one of them was totally a guy (tip - if you're a 13 year old guy who wears skinny jeans and long hair, don't get offended if some people think you're a girl) but then as I started talking to them as soon as I mentioned we were from a church the guy just turned around and stood there with his back turned the entire time while I talked to the other girl (who was actually a girl).  Yeah.  Oh the awkward moments of missionary life.  They never end.

But some miracles for you.

We found another lost Spanish sheep this last week.  Which means we were out walking and this guy comes up to us who can't speak English (so basically just another day in Pasadena) but between our broken Spanish and his broken English we learned that he was a member of the church who had moved here from Mexico months ago and didn't know where the church was, if there even was one.  So of course we did some number exchanging and some awkward Spanglishing, but then he was at church yesterday.  Such a miracle that we were at that exact place at that exact time for him to be found.  Coincidence?  I think not.

Another miracle is Delilah.  Remember Delilah?  I know I've talked about her before.  She's amazing.  I love her so much.  We found her a little over a month ago and have been teaching her ever since, and in the time I've been working with her I've seen the gospel change her life.  She's become happier, she reads and understands the Book of Mormon, she comes to Young Womens every week.  And this coming Sunday, if all goes according to plan, she's getting baptized.  I'm so ridiculously excited for her.  As part of preparing her for her baptism, we went over the other day to watch a church DVD, Finding Faith in Christ, with her.  If you haven't seen it, it is basically like a 20 minute long film that depicts the life of Christ.  Well, we get to the scene where Christ is resurrected and comes to see Mary, and she turns around and sees him and of course he is all resurrected and glorious, and he comes on the screen and Delilah, sitting next to me, goes "gosh his hair is so perfect, that's not fair."  But wait, it gets better.  Then the scene comes where he shows himself to his apostles, and Thomas of course has been kind of doubting and finally feels the prints in the Lord's hands and believes, and Christ says something along the lines of "because you have seen, you have believed, blessed are those who have not seen, yet believe" and Delilah goes "oohh need some ice for that BURN" and then after a few minutes reflecting on that, she says "he's got the sassiness, he's got the perfect hair, is there anything Jesus *can't* do?" at which point Sister Crump and I basically lost it.  Best commentary to a church movie ever.

But anyways.  Thank you all for your emails and prayers.  I hope you all have the greatest week, full of cookies and sunshine and daily prayer.  I love you!
Love,
Sister Bayley Enright

Elder Sarchet, Sister Enright and Elder Poplin

me and Elder Bock our district leader with Elder Poplin creepin the background

Sister Crump, Sister Enright

me, Elder Poplin, Elder Sarchet, and Sister Crump

me, Sister Crump, and Sister Christensen the awesome member who drove us

Our district

 the sisters in the district - Sister Crump, me, Sister Mcpherson, and Sister Martin.

AMAZING TOILET PAPER BUT STILL NO PEANUT BUTTER (Kegan)

This is a roll of toilet paper we recently bought, it looks a little different right, THERE´S NO HOLE

Instead of a hole there´s this thing-a-ma-bob that looks all fancy sitting in the middle


 and does nothing but look a little fancy

What the fetch....it opens

That´s right the little fancy doohopper is MORE FETCHING TOILET PAPER,  I don´t know if you guys have seen something like this before but you need it.

That should be everyone.... (Kegan)

Hello everybody!, whether you are in the mission, at home, or in some other place, I really hope this email gets to you because I have recently, well okay about two weeks ago, found out that I may have some incorrect emails, however everything should be good, besides, it´s not like I could tell you to email me if you don´t get this, because if you don´t receive this email...well bummer.  There will be a solution some day.

But anyways.  This week in the mission has been fabulous in a few aspects and a little less so in others, the main reason being the lack of JIF Peanut Butter here in Chile (that´s the reason for the ´little less than fabulous´ part by the way, plus why the heck did I just use the word fabulous, I AM A MAN!) 

The week started out very well. Elder Correa and I were able to teach Gonzalo, our athiest investigator, twice at the beginning of the week.  We had a great lesson at the top of the hill on the peninsula of Quintero where we talked a lot about prayer, because he still hadn´t prayed.  That next day we were able to accompany him on his way to work and talk more about pryaer, because he STILL hadn't Prayed (Ether 12:6, 2 Nefi 32:4, Alma 32: 17-18 !!!!!  GAAAHHHH!!!!) those verses pretty much describe how I feel about the situation.)  At least we are his friends.  We are going to have to teach him AND his family, Elder Correa and I may also have to exercise some unrighteous dominion and MAKE him Fetching Pray!! Because as soon as he does that I know that we will be able to help him more than ever.

Thursday we spent walking around in Loncura searching desperately for work to do and never found it.  What´s more the wife of our only investigator with a Baptismal date, told us he was not going to return this Saturday from Santiago but the NEXT Saturday, o sea, the day right before his Baptism was supposed to be.  We didn´t feel all too happy at that point

BUT

That very night we called Fernando to encourage him to return early in order to be Baptized the 2nd of Marzo.  To prove that God is a God of miracles he said he would be able to return the 24th, or Monday from Santiago and we could help him to prepare this week.  Elder Correa and I felt as if all the work we had that day that had been seemingly for nothing had been so that God could bless us that night with Fernando's early return.  What´s better is that yesterday we saw him seated next to his wife in the chapel, he had returned two days earlier than planned!!!

So we have a baptismal service this Sunday and you are all invited despite the inevitability of your arrival.

Also  The weather is starting to change here because the sky is more often gray than not, what stinks is that the clouds don´t exactly weaken the strength of the sun here, so it is still really hot outside of the shade.

Oh well

I hope you are all doing well and again that you receive this email.

Elder Enright

.Penguinos!!! My companion is obsessed with them, they are essentially.... Shoot I forgot what you call em in the States, but they are little chocolate cakes with chocolate frosting on top and cream in the middle


 Mission Coordination meeting, that´s Hno Bascope, our Ward mission leader,  I just love how the aspect makes it look like I am a giant sneaking up on him, Had to share that.

So I have printed a photo (POR FIN!) of Rhys in the mission and Bayley sent me one a while ago and I realized they have something in common, The Enright Missionary thumbs up, I approve.


Monday, February 17, 2014

A Few Things..... (Rhys)

Before I get going, I just thought that I might clear up a few things. first off, the wormy water. Mom, I´m glad you asked; I may have been somewhat depressed had my mother not commented on this and that may be all I wanted to say about that. Oops, not. The thing is that A: I have a water filtering bottle that I bought before the mish, B: I have another one that I got at the MTC because they don´t want us to die. That´d be bad, Thanks MTC!! Because seriously, for the first two transfers here in Argentina, I drank all of my water from one of those two bottles. filling them up and leaving one in the fridge and always switching them out to have cold water cause a tank on the roof apparently gets heated up by the sun, hmmm, who knew? After the red worm incident, I still continued to drink everything through these bottles. . . I just boiled it beforehand. So that´s actually what happened, Mom, sorry to worry you, but thanks for worrying.

Kegan and Isaac. Kegan, I know Elder Brough quite well, cause he lives right next to me here (not for too much longer, he and his comp got a new pensh and are on their way to move to that one soon). Isaac, he also says he knows Elder Chug and Hermana Padelsky. In fact, Elder Brough says that he´s best friends with all of them, but I wouldn´t trust him on that one, he´s got shifty eyes.

Yep, I think that that´s all that I wanted to say about that, and now on to something interesting about this week, It's actually harder to think of something that wasn´t awesome about this week. So I´m just going to tell one of the coolest things that happened and then send my wonderful parents and their snot-nosed-brats an email.

This particular story is about how Elder Ratliff (you were right Kegan, he is short, there are lots of comments about that here) and I found and ended up teaching Sergio and Gisela. So Ratliff and I have a ton of references, mostly cause they kept stacking up as we try time and time again to contact the ones that we have while collecting new ones, but hey, whos going to complain about references?? We´ve had this one for a while for a house right next to a less active member (a really nice grandma lady who´s only less active because sometimes it´s tough to leave her house and she really loves us to pass by and gives us cookies. Old nice grandma ladies that gave us food were only a legend to me and my comp in Formosa and I always wanted to meet one and oh yeah that´s another thing that I wanted to tell my Mom about, you asked where exactly I was in my last area: Formosa, formosa capitol, Barrio Lujan. Technically a part of the capitol city, but way out there.) and we´d never been able to catch someone at home, until this week as you may have guessed. We tried one  afternoon and the man named Sergio opened the door (literally looks like the Argentinian version of Tobias from Arrested Development). He actually closed the door behind him and began to tell us that he really wasn´t interested at all. So we got to talking more to him and found out that he actually doesn´t believe that God or anything like God exists. Some more talking revealed that before, he had been a little religious, but his only son died at 13 and not too long after that, the place where he worked burnt down. So Ratliff and I don´t really know what to say about the work, but we do have something to tell him about his son. So we shared a little about the plan of salvation on the doorstep and Sergio invited us in. After one of the most reverent lessons that I have had on the plan of salvation, Sergio wanted us to come back soon so that he and his wife (can´t think of the word in English, it´s not wife cause they´re not actually married yet, but they basically are, if you know what I mean, I know that Kegan does) and He also really wanted to come to church with us. He didn´t end up coming because his wife worked this Sunday and they told us that they want to go together sí o sí and so we´re making plans for next week. But this experience and the opportunity to know these two people and to have the opportunity to share that plan of salvation with two who have lost their only child made me super grateful for this plan and just how darn tooting perfect it is. To every doubt and question that Sergio had, we didn´t have the answer, but the plan of salvation did. What happens if someone dies before having been baptised? what about younger children? or what about how we can actually live together forever? every part of the plan is there to catch us if we ever fall and give us another chance to achieve the salvation that is so clearly the goal of the plan.

I´m super grateful for the plan, and also for the family that I get to spend it forever with, in the meantime, here´s a cartoony looking car in our area.

Elder Enriqué



Pension, study

Study 2

Cocina

Bedroom  (all 4 Elders sleep in one room because it has air conditoning)

Bano

Stairs

Valentines Day Zone Conference (Bayley)

Okily dokily.
 
So, first of all, happy Valentines Day to you all!  A few days late.  I actually hardly even noticed the holiday since it really isn't that big of a deal on your mission, but I did take a minute to celebrate February 15 - the one year anniversary of my receiving my mission call.  How insane it is to look back and realize a whole year has gone by since I was called to be a missionary.  It's 1000% not okay how quickly time is flying.
 
Anyways.  Let's not think about that.
 
One of the highlights of this week was Saturday, when Sister Crump and I got to go to the temple to help out with baptisms.  Our mission president has recently released a policy that missionaries are allowed to go with recent converts to the temple if it is within 90 days of the person's baptism, thus encouraging missionaries and recent converts alike to get that person to the temple.  And so on Saturday we got to go!  With Pasadena's recent convert, Brian, who was baptized just a little bit before I got here.  He's from Scotland, is a retired pilot who still goes flying all the time because why not, and is truly awesome.  And it was so amazing to get to go to the temple with him and see him there for the first time.  One of the best parts of the whole trip, however, was when another recent convert in our ward, Brother Barnes, revolutionized the baptismal process by, instead of leaning back to the baptized, squatting all the way under the water.  More efficient, perhaps, but also a lot harder to watch and not laugh.  So funny.
 
In less spiritually uplifting news, our water has been on and off sporadically this whole week, which means our toilet is either not flushing or making Moaning-Myrtle's-haunted-bathroom noises, which is fine.  Sometimes it drowns out the noise of cats fighting that makes it really difficult to fall asleep at night.  You'd think those cats, who like to fight and scream and yowl right outside my window, would've either killed each other or resolved their differences by now, but apparently not.  Have I mentioned how many cats there are here?  Seriously, they're everywhere.  Cats and chihuahuas.  They run this town.
 
The biggest thing about this week was our zone conference though, which was actually on Valentines Day now that I think of it - tricksy mission leaders keeping any missionaries from getting trunky for Valentines Day.  But it was seriously an incredible conference.  It was with President and Sister Aidukaitis of the 70, who came and spoke to us on lengthening our stride and widening our vision as missionaries.  President Aidukaitis is basically Doofenschmurtz (I'm pretty sure that's spelled wrong) from Phineas and Ferb, at least he looks and sounds just like him, and he's hilarious.  It's funny how serious you'd think all General Authorities are, and then you meet them and they're just like normal people, except that wherever they go it's like the spirit is so concentrated you can't breathe.  But like at one point we were talking about reasons why missionaries hesitate to invite people to be baptized and this one missionary was talking about distractions that happen during lessons and President Aidukaitis goes "oooohhh yes, the Holy Ghost *hates* children!" with a dead straight face, and we all just cracked up.  So funny. 
 
They also shared some truly incredible counsel, some of which I think applies to everyone, missionary and non-missionary alike, so I want to share it with you.  And that is to live and plan your life by FAITH.  One of the things missionaries do a lot of is set goals - not just personal goals like "be more charitable" or "be more patient" but actual numbers goals - like goals for how many lessons we're going to teach and how many people we're going to find and whatnot.  And one of the goals we set is for how many baptisms we are going to have each week.  And in discussing the importance of our goals, not only having them but having the faith to make them a reality, President Aidukaitis went along our row of missionaries and asked each companionship what their goal for baptisms was this coming week.  And since most of us didn't have any we were planning on, most of us said "0."  When we'd finished, President Aidukaitis looked at us all and asked if we believed God was able to do all things.  Yes, of course we believe that.  Do we believe in his promise that "the field is white already to harvest"? Of course we do - we believe God keeps his promises.  Do we believe God can guide us to those who are prepared to receive the gospel?  To those who are in need of it?  Yes, of course he can.  Can He even perform such miracles as finding people who are so ready to get baptized like that week?  Of course!  He's God, right?  We believe he can do ALL THINGS.  And then he looked at each of us in turn and asked "but why would he give such a miracle to you if your goal is 0?"  So yeah.  All of us basically looked at our toes or pretended to be taking really in depth notes - but it was powerful.
 
Now of course, in normal life, you guys don't sit down every night and set goals for how many people you are going to baptize (missionaries are weird, it's okay) but I think it is safe to say that we all set goals of some kind - but are those goals just coincidences we're hoping will occur, or are they actual realities that we have FAITH can actually happen, so long as we have faith in God and then we go out and do all we can to make that goal a reality?  I think that principle of faith is something powerful and applicable to each and every one of us.  God can do all things, which means all things can be done so long as we trust in him.
 
I love you all!  Choose the right, make french toast, and enjoy sleeping in on the weekends.
 
Love,
Sister Bayley Enright
 
P.S. I just remembered that I totally did celebrate Valentines Day!  Sort of.  Our ward had a ward Valentines Day activity that we didn't know if we missionaries were supposed to go to but we figured we could go just for like our dinner appointment (since there was going to be free food and missionaries never turn that down, that's just against all mission rules) and when we showed up it turned out that it was a Valentines Dance so the gym was all dark and the music was really loud and all the missionaries just ate our cookies and sandwiches out awkwardly in the hallway before leaving.  Yup, the awkward moments never cease.

Ateos, French Toast, The Spirit, LETTERS!, and more Missionary Work!!! (LOOK I got a subject in!) (Kegan)

Yes, yes thank you very much, I was finally able to organize my thoughts to create a subject for this email, even though it doesn't appear organized in any way, However, rest assured that my brain has worked on higher levels in the past, (Thumbs up!)

So we will start with number one, ATEOS.  To clarify I am speaking of athiests (Ateo is en Español)  ¨Why?¨ you mights ask am I talking about atheists, because this past Monday, after an extensive trip to Viña, we were finally able to go to work again and so we went to try and contact a couple of referrals and past contacts we had made in the Bunker (big apartment complex).  We knocked on a door we had contacted a while back and a twenty-something year-old man opened the door and almost instantly started asking us questions about what he had heard from his parents, whom we had contacted the first time.  We talked a bit at the door but then explained a little bit about our message (You know, eternal Salvation and whatnot) so he let us in (FOOL! haha!) and we got to know him.  His name is Gonzalo, although he was raised Catholic, like his parents are, he is atheist but interested in what we share about the Book of Mormon.  We passed by again later in the week with our Bishop and had an excellent lesson with him.  With the Bishop we talked about the restoration, but a lot about conversion as the Bishop could relate a lot with Gonzalo, having been in very similar one before his own conversion.  Gonzalo, although he claims to not believe in God, pays more attention than any other investigator I have had in the mission, literally.  He told us before we´d finished the lesson with our Bishop that he really felt an interest to know if God exists.  He also takes faith and prayer super seriously.  For him it is important for us to help him understand the power of faith, but also to show him the faith he does or can have, because  ¨.. Faith without works is dead.¨ that´s why he needs to pray. 

Later in the week I got to have interchanges with Elder Nash,  we had an awesome time together, we talked with a lot of people in the street, but my favorite part may have been the excitement Elder Nash has to be a missionary, it really made me open up my eyes because...well holy Fetch, I'm a missionary!!  I also may have lied because that night of interchanges might have also been  better.  Elder Nash brought the Maple syrup that Elder McDaniels had foolishly left behind and we made FRENCH TOAST!!!! (Plus, Elder Nash tells me Frozen was amazing, shoot!)

The next morning We continued to search for people to talk to.  On the way to lunch I recognized Leonor and Felipe, two new investigators I had found with Elder Gomez, but had essentially dropped because I never found them once in the last change.  I felt super impressed by the spirit to go and talk to them even though we were late for lunch.  What was amazing was that they recognized me, I had never thought we had left a strong impression with them, but that tells you what I know.  We will pass by today, but it sounds like it will still be hard to find them at home.  I guess I've learned I should have worked harder to find them, but that means I won't make the same mistake this time.  

Something i FORGOT TO MENTION WAS THAT ahhhhhh CAPS lock!  Ok, we're good, Anywhoo, This past Wednesday I got Letters !!!!!  Thankyou guys so much!! for those letters, Isaac I didn't get one from you yet but I doubt somebody messed with it, there are less problems with that here than in Mexico. Thank you LaFonds for your letter, I now have pictures of more of my extended family to show off to the members here. 

Rhys: do you know an Elder Brough, because he´s got a friend here in Viña named Elder Ethington, we got to talking

Isaac, the same Elder knows two other missionaries over there in Japan, an Elder Chug and an Hermana Padelsky.  I pads still sound so cool.

Until next P-day I eagerly await all of the fan mail that is bound to arrive.
Love you guys

Elder Enright
Elder Guapo y Elder Nash on interchanges
French toast!
The district leaders' suppllies.
On the way to Stake Conference  Christian (Future Elder ), My Comp, and Hna Brenda
Hno Bascope (ward mission leader), Elder Wadman, (DL), and Elder Correa
Coming home after Stake Conference, waving at Mom

Monday, February 10, 2014

Entonces..... (Kegan)

Short on time yet again

I took to Viña today to get my Carnet (Chilean identity card) and to shop for pants (because the sun has literally been bleaching the pants I have).  It was very odd walking around in JCPenny ( even though they called it Lolabelle or something like that it was definitely JCPenny) here in Chile.  While I was trying pants on I got a call that I should have emailed a document earlier that morning.  Since  I was actually a few dozen blocks from the office I was able to walk there and let them make a copy of it (thank goodness I had that thing in my back pack) because the trip there lasted about an hour and a half.  

But all that is the end of this past week, I should at least begin with Tuesday becuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuz... Tuesday night I had an awesome experience teaching a menos activo who had recently begun to reactivate.  We talked about the Restoration (honestly because we were a little worried she´d forgotten), but when we got to talk about prophets (you know, those guys) she confessed that she didn't believe there could be a man today on the Earth who is a prophet of God. That kind of stopped my companion and I in our tracks, which was very easy as we were already seated.  So we began to elaborate the part of the lesson that should be prophets and kind of turned it into a testimony of prophets session, supported strongly by the Bible and the Book of Mormon.  What made the lesson truly memorable was when a helpful neighbor decided to begin blasting Europe´s The Final Countdown just as my companion began to testify.  Yup,  I felt very tempted to begin a Job Bluth magic show.

Later in the week My district leader and I both got very sick, well I was sick, he had some insane back pain due to a scist (SPELLING?) that had grown in his lower back.  We spent an intercambio together with some rest time for him, but of course with contacts and book placing.  The contacts might have appeared very odd the way I had to keep my neck, back, and head stiff to stop the migraine and him walking with pretty stiff legs and back due to the pain, I'm just glad we don´t have video. 

But like I said, short on time.  What was excellent about this week was that Natalia was confirmed this SUNDAY!!!

The not very good news is that I have spoken with the mission President who doesn´t want us walking farther than Loncura from here on (turns out Ventanas, where Victor lives, and Puchuncavi, where Natalia lives, should correspond to us).  That means we have now got to rely on the ward to visit and teach them, not much has happened as of now but we hope to increase the amount of ward missionaries we have to support this change.

ISAAC:   Ipads man!! I can´t believe you even get your email done with them.  When I was in the CCM people talked about a mission in California where they Used Ipads like Lehi talks about the Promised Land, only without the promise of obtaining it.  I´m really curious how you include them in the work and how much they help. Do you use them when you go street contacting? 

Elder Enright

*Something Inspiring* (Rhys)

Really quick, first off I want to say happy late birthday to Elder Bennion whose birthday was Groundhog day. I planned to say this a little bit earlier (last monday to be exact, but that didn´t really pan out quite like I had planned, cause I forgot. So Happy Birthday!!!

Also thank you for all the awesome letters that I received in the mail just this past Tuesday. I got a Christmas Card from the LaFonds (all except Eli, for some reason they replaced him in the family with an absurdly tall freakishly old looking clone, much like what is happening in my family): I got a letter from Japan. . . well not from Japan actually, from an Elder Ricks who just so happens to be in Japan and that´s the place that sent it, But Japan didn´t write anything. A letter from the greatest sister missionary who is currently serving in Texas and enjoying cold weather. And one from another Elder who just so happens to be in the superbly inferior country of Chile. So we´ll just pretend that I totally was expecting all of these and totally didn´t almost pee my pants when my new Zone Leader (Elder Parsons) handed me letter after letter as my excited scream raised in volume and pitch to match the rising stack of envelopes in my outstretched hands.

I am so fetching excited to tell everybody (all 26 of you at least) that two of our investigators (Hermana Bety and Hermano Luis) here in Reconquista 1 got married just this past friday and baptized together with four others in the branch the following saturday. And don´t forget the super important confirmation part too, that happened this past sunday too. So that was pretty bomb, especially after working with them all week to help them get married and also continue to not smoke, something that they had given up, but at times is easier to not do than other times. Hermana Bety nos dijo a story about walking in to find Hermano luis holding a cigarette, not smoking, but holding a cigarette and kind of just sitting there, not wanting to smoke it, but at the same time wanting to smoke it. Hermana Bety told him if she wasn´t going to smoke, then he wasn´t going to smoke either and brought in a bag of suckers (something that we figured out kind of helps to give up smoking, candy) and replaces the cigarette with a sucker. The way that she told it was pretty funny, and I guess you had to be there. but now we´re going to start talking with their sons more because they both smoke and that´s what makes it harder for Bety and Luis, especially since we got rid of all of Bety and Luis´ cigarettes, but the sons still have ém. So that´ll change soon.

Other news this week, Helped our recent convert Hermano Danilo (from the saturday before I got here ) paint a room and today went with Hermano Danilo to a place where you can buy Ice cream in buckets of ten liters, no joke, they just didn´t happen to have menta Granizada, so we had to stick with banana with Dulce de leche. 

Oooooo, another news item that may or may not be related to ice cream, found a place now that we can run to in the mornings to do our excercises. After doing it this morning and doing some pull-ups, I realized just how much 4 months without the ability to do pull-ups has affected me. . .  and possibly Ice cream, but I don´t like to cast blame at Ice cream, so we´ll just say the four month gap. Yeah, I feel better.

Not too much more to tell except for the fact that after a really really really really hot day in the morning, it started pouring rain like crazy just about an hour ago, kind of cleared up a bit now. But that´s how it works here, crazy heat followed by crazy rain. And I can´t think of anything else to say other than don´t forget to be awesome, everyone.

Elder Enright

Painting service project

Bear witness to the ten liters of ice cream (and a studly ELder with his sweet cup)

Hermana Bety

First week of Motherhood (Bayley)

*mission motherhood, that is.

So. Right. Transfers.  This last Tuesday, Sister Boam and I bid our farewells in Houston and I picked up my baby missionary - Sister Crump!  She is awesome.  She is from Utah, the oldest of four, and so excited to be here.  We have been together not even a week and have already seen our fair share of miracles.  But what else is new?  That's the mission life, right?

First of all, let me tell you a story about our investigator Hollis.  So Hollis is wonderful, I love that guy.  He is 79 years old, searching for greater happiness and "the truth," and loves the Joseph Smith story.  His hangups are 1) drinking coffee, and 2) he's addicted to sports. No joke, he seriously cannot bear to be away from watching sports for just a few hours eachSunday, so it's a real struggle to get him to come to church.  It seems ridiculous, and honestly I am probably like the worst missionary to help him through this specific concern since I have like 0 empathy for that particular challenge.  In fact, I asked my district leader if he thought it'd be okay if I took a baseball bat to Hollis's TV as an attempt to help him break his addiction (Elder Bock said that there wasn't anything in the white handbook that said otherwise, but that President might not be 100% down with it).  But anyways, so we've been helping him quit coffee and have given him all these suggestions and helps and whatever, and this last week we sit down with him and he's like "you know what girls, this no coffee thing isn't going very well, because I went and bought that hot chocolate that you told me about and it's disgusting!" and I just sort of sat there wondering if I really and truly had just heard the words "hot chocolate" and "disgusting" used in conjunction with one another, and what could I possibly say to that and finally our member is like "well what kind of hot chocolate did you buy?" and he goes into the kitchen and brings out a tin of Nesquik.  Yup. Nesquik.  And we were like "well DUH that's not hot chocolate, Hollis!" and he was like "but it says chocolate - look, right here!" and when we told him it was for chocolate milk, not hot chocolate, he goes on like this 15 minute rant about how if it wasn't chocolate they shouldn't market it as chocolate and how was he supposed to find hot chocolate when everything said "chocolate."  Hahaha.  Finally we were like "listen Hollis, how about you ask a store associate to help you?" and he was like "well what if they don't know what hot chocolate is?!" and we were all "trust us, they will - everyone knows what hot chocolate is" and he said "well then how come I don't?!"  I don't know, Hollis.  I just don't know.  See how important missionary work is?  Bringing truths and happiness to those who know not where to find it - not just talking about the gospel, but also about hot chocolate.  HOW CAN YOU NOT KNOW WHAT HOT CHOCOLATE IS LIKE FOR REALS THAT IS MY LIFE.
Anyways.

Another story.
So we have this guy here named Richard who was baptized several months ago and then just never came back to church.  We have a lot of that, actually.  It's super sad.  After people get baptized and make that choice, there is serious opposition from Satan because of course he KNOWS that they are on the right path, and so he does all he can to knock them off early because he knows the further down they go the harder it will be for him to get them.  But anyways.  So we finally manage to sit down with Richard and teach him a lesson, it's been FOREVER, our appointments with him always fall through.  But finally we're teaching him!  So we're talking some very basic stuff here - like receiving answers to prayers and recognizing the Holy Ghost, and we're talking about how he has gained that confirmation from the Holy Ghost that this church is true, and I asked him that now that he knows that, what is he going to do with that knowledge, and we sit there waiting for him to answer...and keep waiting...and keep waiting.  Keep in mind that the Spirit is like WAY strong in the room, and we can tell that Richard not only feels it, but feels uncomfortable with how strong it is.  So finally after like a good 10 minutes of silence, he just stands up and is like "I have to go."  And just leaves in the middle of our lesson.  Yup.  That hasn't happened yet. First time for everything on the mission I guess.  It was good though, because you could tell that the Spirit was working with him helping him realize there are changes he needs to make.  But then we told the elders about it and now everyone thinks it's hilarious that I spirit-scared off someone in the middle of a lesson.  Which is fine, really.  I can live with that reputation.

Okay, so last story.  We have a couple we are working with who are super awesome.  The wife is a recent convert as of last summer, and her husband has been investigating the church but his baptism has been placed on hold until the two of them can be remarried (marital law in Texas is no fun at all - it's like they *are* married but not really but sort of but actually no, a fact that surfaced after her baptism, which has been fun to discuss with them both as we've been helping him prepare for baptism.  But yeah, anyways). However, they have been facing the most severe financial struggles and have been living in a hotel with no employment, no transportation, and really very little hope. This past week, though we didn't know it at the time that we made plans to go and see them, they were conned out of what little money they had left, and were left with absolutely nothing. When we stopped by at the hotel, we arrived to find them in really the worst we've ever seen them. Both were crying, both were a wreck, and they just told us how they felt so hopeless and abandoned. We had prepared a lesson to share with them, but it was very clearly not what was needed. We reassured them of their Heavenly Father's love for them, and knelt and said a prayer with them that they would be at peace and trust in God. Though we couldn't do anything for their circumstance, we did all we could to bring the spirit into that little hotel room. It's so hard to see people in situations like that, and all you want to do is do EVERYTHING for them but it just doesn't work like that.  So anyways, just 2 days later, we decided to stop by again and see how they were doing. The situation was much different than the one we had left, they were both doing much better, had talked with Bishop, and had made plans to help them with their financial situation. But then the husband told us something amazing - he thanked us for coming over when we had that day before, and told us that the exact moment that we had knocked on their door he had been at breaking point, and didn't know what he was going to do, but knew that it would've been bad, but that we had come and the prayer we had said and short message we shared had been exactly what he needed to hear, and it "diffused" him.  Moments like that remind me of how incredible it is to be a missionary, and how important it is that we as missionaries follow the Spirit.  We didn't know the situation that was going on with that couple that day when we made plans to go see them, but God did, and he arranged everything so perfectly so that we could help them. We really are just instruments in His hands, and I just love seeing His work being accomplished so perfectly all the time.

I love you all!  Keep feeding the missionaries because the missionaries here could use it - yesterday in Relief Society literally NO ONE had signed up to feed any of the 5 sets of missionaries, so I just kept sending the meal calendar back down the row over and over again until finally someone signed up...to feed the other sisters.  Close enough.

Love,
Sister Bayley

Me and Sistah Boam, last day

Lake Charles people at transfers!!! Some of my favorite people in the world. No joke.

Posterity pic! My grandma Sis Hamilton, my momma Sistah Barton, me, and my baby Sister Crump


Monday, February 3, 2014

Reconquista 1 (Rhys)

Hello people, Something that I didn´t mention in my last email that you may have taken count of anyways is that that was my last monday before transfers. So now that means that this is the first Monday after transfers. And sadly, that also means that I am no longer in Formosa.

We got the calls tuesday night (a lot later than usual) and our zone leaders told us that basically everything would be the same. . . except for a few things. Elder Truman was to head to Reconquista something or another in Santa Fe as a district leader, and Elder Enright (that stud) was to head to Reconquista Uno, which is in Elder Truman´s district. I have to admit that I didn´t take the news too well. After one whole transfer of our area almost dying on us and almost nothing happening, when we were finally getting the area back on it´s feet with Emir and . . . well mostly Emir, I had to leave. So I called Emir and told him what was going to happen (like he told us to do no matter what happened) and said bye to him. Then I stayed up late packing my stuff and then tried to sleep. Oh yeah, failed that last part btw.

Early as crap the next morning, I left on a colectivo for Resistencia and from there to Reconquista, realizing slowly that I was no longer in Kansa. . I mean Formosa. And let me tell you something, Argentina really changes the further south that you get. I finally arrived at Reconquista, met my new comp, (ELder Ratliff, he came out at the same time that I did, but was waiting in New York for a Visa and is from Gilbert Arizona. . . along with three other elders in our zone) and As the day grew longer and longer, I realized just how bomb my new area is. We live in a pension with two other ELders (one of them, ELder White, is also from Gilbert Arizona and went to the same school in said Gilbert and they were comps at the MTC and they waited for their visas together with different comps, but in the same pension and since coming to Argentina they´ve been in the same zone. Weird) and it´s right next to Grido (best Ice cream in Argentina). supposedly our area is "small" but after my area in Formosa that we could walk around in less than 15 minutes, it´s decently sized. 

I need to send pics of my area sometime because it´s super sweet and there are lots of shops and rich people (rich people who think that they don´t need mormonism, silly people, they already said yes a long time ago) and I don´t need to leave my area if I need to buy something, and I can walk there. But the best part is the water. If I want to wash the dishes, I don´t have to fill up water bottles in the bathroom, don´t have to check for worms, don´t have to boil my water every night due to fear of worms (technically only happened once or twice in Formosa and it was funny, but still. . .) and if I happen to be washing my dishes (just mine this time, I don´t have to wash everyone's anymore) and I happen to want warm water, I can have it!!! I really need to finish this so that I can write to my family, but things rock here in Argentina (way more in Argentina ) and I have to be careful with my money now that I have Grido so close. And thank you everyone for emails, Dinino family, thank you so much for your emails and support, I´ll be seeing Vegas again in less than two years now, but I can hardly believe that today marks 7 months.


Elder Enright 


P.s. Rise and shine campers, and don´t forget your booties cause it´s cold out there. (it´s late, but still)


Concerning Snow, Bashing, and Pasadena Miracles (Bayley)

So first of all, I informed you all last week that I'd spent my pday in an epic Risk game, and it seems only appropriate to provide the contrast and tell you that this last week my time was spent instead playing football.  Yes, playing football.  And by "playing football" I mean the other missionaries played football while I ran around and tried to look like I knew what was going on, clapping when the other people clapped and trying to look like I cared, except more than one time I ended up being on the wrong side of the field while the rest of my team looked at me like I was and idiot.  It's fine, fine.  We can't all be football stars.  Obviously.
 
Anyways, so I have a few stories for you today, the first one being that IT ACTUALLY SNOWED IN TEXAS.  Yes, yes indeed.  Did it snow for more than 2 minutes and stick to the ground or car or anything?  No.  But it did snow.  It was quite funny actually.  That day - Tuesday - was FREEZING, and also ice was falling from the sky (literally - not rain, not snow, not hail, just evil pellets of ice) and because we are crazy (or actually because I'm crazy, Sister Boam wasn't too keen on the idea) we went out walking to our plans, hoping to garner some sympathy points.  And we FINALLY managed to get in with someone, out of the freezing ice storm, and we sitting in her nice warm house just starting to talk about prophets and how important they are, when all of the sudden she leaps up and exclaims "IT'S SNOWING" and rushes out the front door and tells us to come with her we can teach her outside but can you believe it's actually SNOWING so we went outside, and everybody had emerged from their houses and was walking around in disbelief and awe, snapping pictures and videoing and acting like the way everyone in Narnia acts when the snow finally begins to melt because Aslan has returned - so I guess sort of like in Narnia except the reverse situation.  So yeah, that's the story of how we finally got out of the cold only to then teach our lesson standing outside in the cold snow that eventually turned to sleet and ice again.  Thanks Texas.
 
Story #2.  The baptist preacher.  So during our Hour of Power we were out knocking on doors and mostly stumbling our way through some awkward Spanish door contacts, but then finally someone English answered the door!  Which was really exciting until he started laying into us about all the evil Mormon practices we supported, the first of which was plural marriage (yup, never dealt with this problem before).  So we politely tell him that our church actually *does* believe in Jesus Christ (He is in the name of our church even) and actually we *do* read the Bible and no we don't practice plural marriage and he goes "no no, see, that's what they want you to think.  But I had a friend who drove through Utah once and he said it's all over the place, but they just don't want you to think that" and we sort of blinked and were like "ok, that's nice that he drove through Utah, but, um, we actually *are* Mormons."  Of course he didn't care about what we were saying, so we talked politely with him for a little bit longer and then left.  Sometimes, that happens, but I have learned that no matter our situation and no matter what is being said to us, we are ALWAYS representatives of Jesus Christ, and we must stand strong and true to who we are and do what Christ would do, and know that so long as we speak truth and don't get angry and start bashing, the spirit will be there with us always.  Which leads me to story number 3 - Marisol.
 
I've talked a bit before about how amazing it is to be instruments in the hands of God, and that's all missionary work is about really - being there so God can do His work through us.  Well, Sister Boam and I had an incredible experience with that this past week.  We had an appointment fall through, and had some people we wanted to try and figured we would just walk to them since it's not like we were on a time crunch and being out walking meant we not only saved miles but could also meet and talk to people on the way.  So we're out walking basically forever, and nobody is home and nothing is happening, but we know that so long as we just are working and praying and trying, God can use us.  And He did.  We're walking along the side of the street (because who needs sidewalks in the South, right?  It's not like Pasadena roads are alarmingly narrow anyways) when this woman driving towards us slows down and stops right next to us and calls to us out her window.  "Will you go see my daughter?" she asks.  We've never met or even seen this woman before, but she tells us all about how her 12 year old daughter has been dealing with a lot of problems and has a lot of negative influences in her life and even ran away from home, and she needs good direction and she knew we could help. We said that we would love to, and asked when and where. The woman told us her daughter was at home right then, we could just go by. So we took the address and walked over to the house, where we met Marisol and her aunt and grandparents. Even though they had no idea who we were - nor did her mother - she let us right in and went and got a Bible. We talked to her all about how God is her loving Heavenly Father, and partway through our lesson her mother returned home and joined in the discussion. At the end we all kneeled and Marisol prayed to know if Heavenly Father was really there.  It was amazing, the Spirit was so strong. And just to think, if we hadn't been out walking and at that certain place at that certain time, we wouldn't have met Marisol.  And maybe it felt like walking was doing us no good because nobody was home and nobody wanted to see us, but we were there and God used us and guided us to those who were in need. To me that is one of the greatest joys of missionary work.
I love you all!  I hope you all had a wonderful Groundhog Day, and quoted Bill Murray excessively, as is only appropriate.
 
Love,
Sister Enright
P.S. Transfer calls were this weekend, but I am staying in Pasadena.   I am, however, losing Sister Boam :( and instead getting a brand new missionary to train!