Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Algunas Cosas (Rhys)

Hey!
Guess who wrote me this past week!!! I don´t believe that everyone here knows who Jonatan G. is, but my family does (a convert to the branch in Reconquista that went in-active but one of my best buds from Reconquista). Well yeah, he wrote me a small letter that was given to me by my zone leaders. He reactivated himself and is preparing for the mission!!!!!
So that was super awesome to hear, I´ll be writing him back soon ( or more like sending the letter that I already wrote. . .soon), but for those of you who know him and talk with him on facebook (fam, that´s you, he told me so) could you let him know that I got the letter?? Thanks.
Other than that, we did lots of missionary wortk this week. That´s basically every week as a missionary, but I don't know how else to put it.

Oh, there´s this one kid that lives in our area, he has like 4 or 5 years and he always is happy to see us. What happened is that last transfer, with Elder Smith, we were clapping a house and only this little kitten came out and tried to climb the fence, and this one kid came up and started watching the cat with us. As missionaries, we can be very easily entertained, and so the three of us just kind of stood there for 2-3 minutes watching this little kitten climb the fence. . . and fall on it´s head. It was allright, but we had a good laugh about it afterwards and this one little kid was saying "¿¿recuerdas el gato?? ¿¿recuerdas??? ¡¡¡SE CAYO!!!"

SO the reason I´m explaining this is because it happened over a month ago, but everytime we passs this Barrio, the little kid will come out and follow us wanting to share memories of the falling cat. it´s pretty great.
As far as what type of work we´re actually doing, there are a few families that we´re helping reactivate and we´re teaching a family that came here from Buenos Aires hace un año. The Dad of the family swears that he was baptized here in Fontana when he had 12 years, but moved to Buenos Aires and lost contact with the church, Interesting, because if I´m right, the Church is bigger there than it is here. But that´s not important, he says that if we continue not being able to find his records, he´s willing to be baptized again. so we were teaching the family (the dad, Gustavo; the mom, Marina; and the kids, Eric and Gernan) and we had our branch mission leader present and at the end of the charla offered to help them get to church and everything (they already decided that they were going, walking was the plan) and as we left he (the mission leader) told us that he felt like he already knew Gustavo, like they had been friends before. He really felt like he knew him. FFFFFEEEEEEETTTTCCCHHH!!!!! Premortal-life-friendshiiiiiiiiip!!!! I´m sure of it. And Saturday night, Hermano Espinoza (said mission leader) passsed by in his auto to give Gustavo a white shirt and tie. so yeah, it was awesome to see them in church. Their kids are so well behaved.

Well, that´s all I got, sorry, no photos again because of the computer. at least I hope it´s the computer and not the converter. . . .  nah, I´m pretty positive it´s the stupid computer.

Elder Enright

P.S. don´t forget about General Conference. . . ya know. . . that thing.  Invite all your friends, relatives, neighbors and Mascotas. The real ugly thing is that there´s a partido entre River and Boca (two of the biggest Futbol teams in Argentina), Domingo en la tarde. I hope you all know which to watch, Conference or Futbol. . . . .

Monday, September 29, 2014

(Kegan)

To sum up my week rapidly and effectively I should speak of several people no más.

The first of all being Diego and the Reyes Family.  We have been teaching Diego all of my time here in Placilla and this Saturday we had his Baptismal service.  Small, reverent, and planned 100% by my awesome ward mission leader (it was surprising not having to organize it all but at the same time very relaxing, okay not really, I was very stressed) However, despite the stress Diego finally entered the waters of baptism...and then didn´t want to get out.  After my companion had performed the ordinance, he promptly led Diego out of the Font but Diego stayed in the font for another 4 minutes floating peacfully on his back.  He apparently had never had the opportunity to enter a swimming pool before.

The next day, Sunday, he was Confirmed in sacrament meeting,  We were very happy to see Tony and Marlo arrive that same morning.  Tony and Marlo are from Peru.  Tony has been a member since 1992, but has been inactive most of his life, his nephew, Marlo, is not a member and has followed his uncle to Chile from Peru and now to the Church at the same time Tony is returning in order to reactivate himself.  Tony is a very cool and friendly guy.  Marlo is 17 and has impressed us with his spiritual sensibility.  That same day we taught them the Restoration and it may have been the best lesson on the Restoration I have been present in.  The highlight being Tony´s sudden realization that the Church was formed by Jesus Christ and Restored by Joseph Smith.  He exclaimed in awe that it all made sense now,  

Daniel, will be baptized between the two Sunday sessions this next sunday in the Stake center.  His interest is as strong as ever and he enjoyed our english classes a lot this past Friday, and I swear it wasn´t Just because we brought Sopapillas.
That´s one of the perks of serving in Chile, Sopapillas are like 20 cents a pop.
It was a fairly brief Email this week due to time limits,hope it sums it up nice for you 

Okay, even I know that was a lame finish.

Love Elder Enright 

Diego´s Baptism (  "It looks like a prison photo", I don´t know why they al look like that, we totally said SONRISA!)

Invitations to our English classes made by our Ward mission leader

Of Phone Malfunctions and Baptisms (Bayley)

​So the weather here in TX is finally starting to cool down, meaning that for the first time this year when we walk out of the apartment at 6:30 in the morning, we don't immediately break into a sweat.  In fact, I even wore a scarf this past week.  We don't really have fall here in TX...but if we did, we could kind of maybe possibly be starting to see the beginning of it...a little bit.  It's wonderful.

Speaking of getting up at 6:30, a story for yall.

So missionaries are kind of like robots when it comes to the schedule - when the alarm goes off we are just programmed to roll out of bed, say our morning prayers, pull on our tennis shoes, rinse with Listerine (fact: I've probably gone through more Listerine than any other single product on my mission...with the exception perhaps of sticky notes) and head outside ready or not for another day.  So earlier this week, when our alarm went off, that's exactly what Sistah Stoff and I started to do, even though we were both feeling positively EXHAUSTED as if we'd only had like 3 hours of sleep.  Leaving the bedroom, I saw that our bathroom clock said that it was 1:25 rather than 6:25.  Confused I checked the phone again: 6:25.  I went out to the living room to check the kitchen clock: 1:25.  Upon pointing this out to Sister Stoff, she checked her watch which read 1:25 as well.  Not wanting to get up 5 hours earlier if not necessary, we decided to do all the troubleshooting we really know how to do with a cell phone and turned it off and back on again (works every time).  And tada!   It really was 1:25, not 6:25, so we kicked off our tennis shoes and went back to bed.  Why our cell phone randomly decided it was 6:30 when it wasn't on that particular day, I don't know, but I'm so glad we didn't go out and start exercising then, because the lack of sunrise partway through probably would've freaked us out into thinking it was the Second Coming or something like that, when really it was just a confused missionary phone.

We are still working hard with Diane and Aljae to prepare them for their joint baptism on the 11th.  I say "working hard" but not really - because they are just so prepared and so involved and the ward has been such a rockstar at integrating them both into Young Mens and Relief Society, respectively.  I love them both so much.  This past week in our lesson with Aljae we were discussing the priesthood, and he is so excited to receive the priesthood and be able to help bless and pass the sacrament.  And just yesterday in our lesson with Diane, she started to tear up as we discussed the blessings of the temple, and expressed how much she couldn't wait to be able to enter the House of the Lord.  With both of these two incredible children of God, they have been so loved by the people here that this ward is their family.  My testimony of the importance of member involvement in the work has been strengthened like tenfold.  I am so excited for their baptism, I just can't wait!
And speaking of baptisms, this past weekend I was able to go back to Pasadena to see Edward get baptized!  I found Edward several transfers ago with Sister Killian.  We were just riding our bikes and he was on the side of the road and we stopped and talked with him.  We would teach him in his autoshop, usually all sweating like crazy, and there he demonstrated a sincere love for His Savior, incredible knowledge of the Bible, and a deep desire to be closer to his Heavenly Father.  And now, several months later, he has been baptized.  I was so grateful to be able to go back to Pasadena - I absolutely LOVE that place and all the members and missionaries there - and in talking to Edward he just kept saying over and over again how happy he was and how this is the biggest blessing for him and thanking us over and over again for bringing the gospel into his life.  Yup, the church is true.  End of story.

This past week was also Sisters Conference here in THE Mission, and I presented a segment on being purpose driven missionaries.  I absolutely loved preparing for that presentation, because in doing so I spent a lot of time really focusing in on what it means to "come unto Christ," since our missionary purpose is to "invite other to come unto Christ."  Ultimately, to "come unto Christ" means to live the Plan of Salvation.  To learn of and follow the Gospel of Jesus Christ here on earth, to take hold of the redeeming and enabling power of His infinite Atonement, and to return to live with him in a state of exaltation in the Celestial Kingdom.  And that really is the purpose of everything!  In all that we do, full time missionary or not, we should be helping those around us not just better their lives here on earth, but ultimately receive Celestial Glory.  And what's truly amazing about that to me, is that, according to Moses 1:39, that is God's purpose as well.  And so when we read that we can be "instruments in the hands of God," that is possible because we are all united in purpose - just as we saw that our Father, Christ, and the Holy Ghost are united in purpose, so are we expected to unite in purpose and live our lives to help bring about the immortality and eternal life of all mankind.  And that's kind of a big deal, everyone.  Don't let yourself be distracted by things of mortality, but keep your eyes focused on eternal matters.  That's really all that matters here, so don't lose sight of it for yourselves or for others.

Yall are amazing.  Thanks for your prayers and for your faith.  I hope yall are as STOKED for General Conference as Sister Stoff and I are (seriously, we have been counting down the days all transfer - its like Christmas except even better) and if you didn't catch Uchtdorf's talk at the women's broadcast from this past Sunday, repentance is available and you can listen to it at least twice because it's amazing.

LOVE YALL!

Sister Bayley Enright

 Me and all my companions!  (Minus sister bolton :( ) From left to right: Sistah Stoff, Sistah Boam, Sistah Crump, moi, Sister Barton, Sistah Killian, and Sistah Johnson

                    ​Accurate

 ​Edward's baptism!  Sistah K, me, Bro Ruiz, Edward, Sis Rogers and Sis Utley

​Random drawing at the church building.  Primary children are the best.

Monday, September 22, 2014

Miracle Max-ed (Bayley)

First of all, an update on the wrist - it's healing!  This past week I got the cast taken off (when you get a metal plate put in, you don't really need all that time to let your bone heal because, well, because you kinda forced it together with metal) and man when they took that cast off...


it looked nasty.  True story.  All that iodine from surgery and lack of use, the thing looked fake!  Poor Sister Stofferahn was more than a little disgusted.  But the Doctor just had me do a few basic exercises like make a fist and try and turn my hand palm up (which made the gash open up and start bleeding everywhere, to which the Doctor went 'ah, very good!' which wasn't exactly what I thought, but whatever) and then he put a few bandages on a sent me home with some therapy exercises to do to get my hand back to normal, which is still a work in progress.  But now I have a pretty sick incision that makes me the most popular missionary in the ward to all the primary children, so that's a nice perk.



So that was definitely a highlight to the week.  Throughout this whole process, I really have seen the hand of the Lord very clearly defined - the whole healing process, the surgery, everything went far better than could've been expected, and the fact that I am sitting here today typing with both hands despite the fact that I broke my wrist three weeks ago is, to me, a miracle.  It was interesting, immediately after the incident I got a blessing from one of the elders, and he blessed me that I'd be able to continue to work and everything would be fine, and though perhaps in the moment of hearing such promises we may think YEAH RIGHT HOW IS THAT POSSIBLE MY WRIST IS BROKEN, God is a God of miracles, and just because my wrist didn't just magically heal right then and there Bible-style, that doesn't mean that my rapid recovery and immediate access to medical assistance was not a miracle in itself.  What's more, this whole thing has really helped me appreciate things that I may have taken for granted before - like the strength in my left hand to push down the window button in the car (seriously though.  You'll all be happy to hear, though, that after several days of little strengthening exercises, I can not only roll down the window in the car, but also squeeze the toothpaste out the toothpaste tube.  It's kind of a big deal).

Anyways, some other highlights of the week included giving Aljae the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet and his saying that he "just wished he'd known about all of this a long time ago," having Diane pray for the first time out loud (and in the prayer she thanked God for letting her know the Book of Mormon was true.  AHH!) and having the Elders' recent convert, Jarvis, open our Book of Mormon class with a prayer saying "Greetings.  This is Jarvis."  Convert and gator prayers are the best: FACT.

We also had leadership conference on Tuesday, which was all the Zone Leaders, Sister Training Leaders, and District Leaders.  It was incredible, I learned so much and received so much inspiration regarding myself, my area, and my sisters.  One of my favorite things shared was actually a quote by President Uchtdorf, in which he said that there are only two ways a companionship gets along: either they are both being humble, faithful, obedient, and strengthening each other to be their best, or they are both content doing wrong.  If a companionship is not getting along, it is because one is trying to do right and the other doesn't care, or is even trying to do wrong.  And I think this principle applies towards all relationships - whether it be with family, with friends, or with others, we should always be striving to have a loving relationship created by a joint desire to serve God and put him first.

We also had a pretty crazy miracle this week.  Sister Stofferahn and I got back from the doctor's appointment on Wednesday a little earlier than anticipated, and so had some time to walk around and knock on some doors.  While we were doing so, it started POURING rain, Texas style.  So we were positively SOAKED.  And as we were walking, sopping, back down the street, we saw two men standing under a pavilion and went up to contact them.  What proceeded to occur was one of the most awkward contacts of my mission, which concluded with both men just leaving and going back inside without even saying anything to us....yeah.  So we turned around and kept walking and at that exact moment a woman came out of the office next door.  (Look at that timing.  Coincidence?  I think NOT).  She saw us and called out "are yall Jehovah's Witnesses?"  to which we responded "nope!"  She then asked "Mormons?" and we were said yes she goes "Good, I need to talk to yall."  YEAH, that doesn't happen every day!  Turns out she works at a battered women's shelter and would like for us to have some sort of Bible study/prayer session with the women to help strengthen them and raise their spirits.  It was seriously such an amazing miracle to see the Lord putting us right there at that EXACT moment so that we could meet this woman and arrange to help so many of his daughters who are in desperate need.  There are few things as wonderful to experience as being the answer to someone else's prayer.

Whats more, yesterday was the primary program.  Sister Stofferahn and I were practically giddy we were so stoked for the best sacrament meeting of the year.  And as all the little primary children sang "I am a Child of God" I felt such a confirmation of God's love for not only all those little kids (including the little boy who kept crying that he wanted his mommy, and also the little boy who was too short so that as he sang his 'Follow the Prophet' solo all that could be seen was his hair sticking straight up above the podium) but EVERYONE.  

Love yall!  Thanks for all your prayers, especially with this wrist nonsense.  I have definitely seen them in our work.

Love,
Sister Enright

​Sister Walton and I at Leadership Conference


​Two arms again!


After getting soaked in the rain

Bugs' Lives! (Kegan)

I have learned very recently and by experience that shoe powder is flamable and yet safe, making it a great and terrible tool to bring hard justice down upon small and large insects alike.

This week we have had several creepy crawlies (and however you´d describe that way that slugs move) help us understand the lack of airtight security in our humble pension.  I´ll include photos, but sadly it has been very hard to download videos onto GMAIL for that reason, I´ll have to ask you guys to be content with the photos.

But...beyond crispy insects, this week was fantastic in terms of la Obra.  One of the highlights being wednesday night when the Ward had it´s 18th of Sept party (short explanation, 4th of July for the States = 18th of Sept for Chile =minus fireworks + chilean-cowboy-kleenex-swinging dances) 

At said party we were able to not only enjoy time with one of our investigators and his family, but we also contacted a reference from a member then and there (Daniel), The food was also very delicious, I´ll try to find a way NOT to sound weird and still use that word.  

Daniel (whom we taught the next day) has been super receptive and we are preparing him to be Baptized next month.  After our Second visit we dropped in to verify how he was doing.  He blew us away by having read not only the Introduction that we had left him, but everything at the beginning of the Book of Mormon up until 1 Nefi 1 and had studied thuoroughly the pamphlet on the Restauration we had ALSO left.  He has been excited since the beginning and I consider myself blessed to havebeen able to teach him.


In just a short while it will be General Conference !!!!!!!!!!!¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡!!!!!!!!¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡!!!!!!!!
Be there or be Square (and please invite friends)
Love Elder Enright

 El 18 de Septiembre 11 (okay, fine it was just yesterday, but it looks very cool)

 "I´m the only stick with EYES" Soooo. that thing was suddenly on our door one night, our neighbors warned us that they jump, bite and are poisonous.  My comp burned him to a crisp.

Sluggy the slug, also a victim to shoe powder spray and fire

All of You.... (Rhys)

people that I always write but are on missions and thus have little time to read the full emails that I send, les pido disculpe. But I`m going to write this real fast so that it`s not too long and I have time to send out smaller individual emails.

FIrst of all, this week we got to listen to Walter F. Gonzalez of the Seventy, he talked to us about Bautizar MAS, Retener MAS, y Reactivar . . . MAS. So we got a real awesome trainging from him and his wife and our beloved Presidente Franco all about how to really help people become really converted to the gospel and how to basically reconvert those who have fallen by the wayside. Elder Gonzalez shared the parable of the lost sheep and how we as representantes of Jesucristo need to follow his example of CARRYING the lamb/sheep back to the fold. E.g. do everything possible to help the people come tot eh capilla los días Domingo hasta que puedan hacerlo ellos mismos!!!!. 

So that whole thing was really fun, and guess who I got to see again. Elder Smith!! ELder Sufia!! Elder Thomas!! Elder Ware!! Elder Clemons!! Elder Murphy!! Elder Ratliff!!  and some others too, but it was really neat to be able to see them all again and we took pictures, but this computer isn`t letting me do anything of the photo sending sort, so ya fue.

But yeah, that`s all I got for now.

Elder Enright

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

(Kegan)

Good Martes everybody!

I´ll explain rapidly the reason why I am writing on Tuesday rather than Monday, even though the only people who probably do really care about what day of the week it is are my parents...

Okay, so this Monday we had an amazing zone conference with President Kähnlein, his wife, and his asistentes,(that may or may not be spelled in Spanish, I am unsure at this point)  so we moved P-day for our zone to Tuesday.  More on the conference later.

This week Elder Oldroyd and I had a blast working with Fransisco and Vicente (I should probably get a picture with them sometime) the two twin returned missionaries.  We were able to use their help to visit a good number of investigators who don´t happen to have a man older than 16 in the house (according to our mission´s rules, unless there IS someone of your same sex PRESENT in the home, you cannot enter).  Plus beyond only using them to enter houses, they both obtained a large amount of experience as missionaries in Mexico and Peru and we were able to utilize those same abilities to teach some interesting lessons to what occasionaly was a seemingly bored group of adolescents.

Speaking of that "group of  adolescents" their name is Familia Alvarez and the youngest son, Diego, is our investigator who will be baptized this weekend, as long as everything goes well.  I will keep you guys updated on what happens, he is 9 years old and is slightly attention deficient as all nine year olds are, so it makes it interesting teaching him.

This past Sunday, we saw a miracle.  We have been praying and fasting intensely that we might find someone that God has prepared.  Through the week it was rough getting anyone to listen to the best message in the world (*cough* that´s the Restoration we´re talking about people) but we continued searching, especially amongst those who we hadn´t taught in a while.  By the end of the week the results weren´t what we were expecting (But Diego DID Come With Us To Church, YAY!!)  In the second hour of church on sunday my comp and I entered the class late and I sat down next to a guy that I didn´t recognize.  When you are new to a ward, it´s a common occurence and you get use to getting to know the members poco por poco by just saying hi to EVERYONE inside the church on Sundays.  So I said hi.  The guy actually ended up being, Daniel, the friend of a member who said yes to her invitation to attend church.  He lives on our side of Placilla (TAKE THAT HERMANA MISSIONARIES!!) in a part that has been particularly dificult for us to work in.  I don´t belive we would have found him any other way and he is very excited to learn about the Church and read the Book of Mormon.  We are going to see him tomorrw in the Ward 18th of Sept Activity.  Two Miracles at once.

The conference (I´ll be brief) was one of the best I have been to, I know I´ve described what they are like before, but I am too lazy to search through old emails, so I´ll do it again.  Zone Conferences are meetings of one to several zones (which basically means at least 20-something missionaries) that get together to listen to what President, his wife, and everyone else who works in the office of the mission have to say.  Everyone who presents in these meeting search for a long time in prayer and fasting to know what the mission needs to be doing, and so we know we will see miracles for (according to what we learned this past Conference) being assertive, bold, faithful, and basically like Jesus Christ.  We also talked a lot about the converts we will (¿) create (?) 

And there was pizza.

It was a very good week and I am looking forward to the week of the 18th, lots of opportunities to find families and speak with raving drunk men, we´ll see how it goes.

Love 
Elder Enright

 Los Alfajores that President gifted us with for the Zone conference (Alfajores are some kind of popular chilean candy that is basically two cookies with caramel/manjar inbetween them and covered in chocolate)

My comp and Vicente crossing the Creepy Bridge, several nights ago

Elder Oldroyd and a family of investigators we found this week.

Some Excerpts from Rhys's Letters

(from a letter to Mom and Dad dated August 22, 2014)
Through letters I like to be able to send/write things that I forgot or don't have time to write in my emails. For example a description of what Argentina is like, something that I hardly ever have time to write about.

In the northern part of Argentina it's more desert-like, not in the sense that there is nothing for miles, but there is dust everywhere (sometimes despite the humidity) and the type of foliage is similar to that in a desert.  But that's not everywhere, there are plenty of areas that are far more forested/ swamp-like.  Reconquista for example, is further south and therefore a little cooler... and gorgeous.  Quite literally every open field that can possibly be used as a futbol field, is, and has two goal posts, one on either end.  In the streets (most are not paved at all, but dirt roads), there are usually ditches on either side called zanjas (sawn-haws) that are little open sewage trenches.  Not all zanjas are for THAT type of sewage, it's more common that kitchen or washing water is drained there, but the other type does happen/exist.  Sheetrock and insulation don't exist here.  Every house, store, building whatever-you-name-it is made of concrete and bricks, so controlling the temperature on the inside requires a heater or air conditioner running 100% of the time.  There are dogs, quite literally,  EVERYWHERE.  Not just normal dogs either, there are random stray dogs that are very often super ugly/damaged/currently pooping in the street.  Just the other day a dog peed on my ankle while we were contacting an old investigator!  Yeah, that was funny.  Not a lot of people here own cars, it's way more common that someone owns a moto (motorcycle or moped/scooter) and I've seen up to five people (usually families) crammed up on top of a moto, sometimes the kids have their own kid-sized helmets.  I've come to love Argentina, even though I doubt that it escaped your notice how much I didn't love it upon first arriving

(from a letter to his siblings dated Aug 23, 2014)
Here in Argentina, we pretty much are without washing machines (as missionaries) and have to wash our own laundry by hand unless a really nice member offers to wash them for you, with washing machine or no. Just last week, Elder Smith and I were walking along this long dirt road, chucking our laundry bags over our backs.  Soon, we became aware that there was someone following us, a 16-18 year old kid in shorts, sneakers, jacket and ski hat.  Once he saw that we noticed him, he asked if we knew the time.  Once he spoke, we knew he was drunk off his rocker (because obviously he didn't have his rocker with him) and we stopped a bit and he caught up with us, asking us where we were from this time.  We told him that we were from...Viviendos (the barrio we live in) and this obviously confused him for a bit before asking again what time it was.  We told him and then he told us his name (don't remember) and that he was waiting for a friend of his.  We told him great, but see ya' (not exactly like that, but you get it).  After about one minute of walking, he calls us back again and asks us what we do, we explained that we're from The Church of Jesus Christ and then he asked for something to read (a fairly common drunk guy thing to do here) all with the obvious air of trying to stall or something.  We gave him a Palabra de Sabiduria pamphlet and shook his hand to leave.  As I shook his hand, a kitchen knife fell out of his other sleeve and all three of us stared down at it for about five seconds before looking back up to his now terrified face.  Elder Smith and I swung our bags over our shoulders, smiled, and said bye.  His face was so funny, worst thief ever.


Monday, September 15, 2014

Transfer 10. Week. . .4, no, week 3 (Rhys)

So this is actually week 4 right now, meaning that last week was week 3, hence the mix up. But I`ll be talking about last week, so week three people.

       First off, thank you to everyone who continues to write me and send pictures, congratulations to my sister for going through surgery and getting to go out to eat in P-day attire (perhaps a more impressive achievement than the surgery). Though I haven`t had time yet to read the emails, I was able to pick up una tema. Erin, WHAT HOUSE IN CALIFORNIA??? 

 To start off the week, obviously we celebrated P-day,  our weekly holiday. We (me, my comp, ELder Allen - from Mesquite, Las Vegas - and ELder Burke) went to visit and hang out with some members who own a small little farm like place, and ate duck guiso. Tuesday was a super super super hot day and... yeah. Wednesday was interesting, this was the day that I first started feeling a little bit sick, but nothing serious. We spent a lot of time contacting and talking to people, we sat down and talked to a group of people known as "gitanos" or Gypsies. These are people that are pretty nomadic and don´t ever stay very long in one place, so at first I was thinking that we should just go and talking to them was a bad idea cause they aren´t going to be here for more than three days anyway, but I wanted to share something with them. It wasn´t till later that my comp and I both KNEW that we had to go and that it was a bad idea and just left a folleto and walked out. People living in busses makes me think of the muppets. . .

I still felt a little sick on tThursday, but My comp had it worse, however, we did some pretty good work and what not. Friday, I woke up with a sore throat that made it hard to talk, but the whole day was literally filled with citas, so that made it alright. Unfortunately, that also made it necessary for me to talk. I didn´t think much of it until the next morning. Saturday, I woke up without the ability to speak above a whisper, yep. That was fun. But even without being able to talk much, I did my best in our citas to talk so that it wasn´t just my comp, he´was a little intimidated by the thought of only him speaking in lessons. Same thing with Sunday, I woke up even worse, but got better after taking a few pills and acquiring honey from ELder Allen to help with the throat. Unfortunately, It had rained all night between Saturday and Sunday, meaning that not many members showed up to church and none of our investigators, we did however get to meet and teach a friend of one of our members. Well, I mean to say that Elder Correa taught her, in all of our lessons leading up to this one, I spoke very little, but tried to help, however, I felt the impression to be completely silent during this one lesson except for the testimony that I gave at the end. . . which no one heard. But that Charla in particular made me realize that me not being able to speak is God interfering with the training of Elder Correa. It`s not that he doesn`t talk much in charlas, we go back and forth great, but this past week we have been studying asking questions and listening and I think that me being silent really helped force my comp to really rely on the spirit during charlas to ask the right questions at the right time, it was great.

Well, it`s nice to be able to say a lot without having to talk, we´ll see how long this lasts and if everything goes well I´ll be talking soon. In the meanwhile, everyone here is making jokes that FINALLY Elder Enright can`t talk and everyone else can. ja ja         ja ja          ja ja. . . . .

Elder Enright

Me trying to hitch-hike to Reconquista (not really), this was taken while SMith was still my companion, that`s his backpack I`m borrowing.

ELder Allen, Elder Correa, Elder Burke, Sebastian, Alsitus, and then there are my knees. . . sorry.

Surgery Week! (Bayley)

So probably the biggest event this week (I wouldn't exactly call it a "highlight") was my surgery, which took place Thursday.  It was all very fast - I went to the doctor's on Wednesday and they made me go through the whole separation-from-your-companion-for-xrays trauma yet again, and the doctor came in and looked at it and asked if I wanted surgery (the other option, he said, would basically be to have a permanently dysfunctioning wrist for the rest of my life, but hey that was nice of him to preserve my agency in this particular circumstance) and when I agreed that yes, I guess surgery would be the best course of action, he went "great! well we need to do it tomorrow."  So yeah.  Good thing my mission president and his wife and also mission doctor and his wife were all out of state at a mission president seminar in Arizona.  That was well timed. (<-sarcasm).  But we had a fabulous member here who was willing to drive us into Houston and stay with Sis Stofferahn while I was being cut open and whatnot.  As far as I can tell the surgery went well, and I was adequately entertaining coming out of anesthesia.  After they wheeled me out and into recovery, I asked if Sister Stofferahn and Sister Elzinga (our member) could come back and once they got there I just started talking to them and talking to them and my machine kept beeping and going off and finally the nurse came back and told me I was talking too much and needed to stop and instead take deep breaths because my oxygen level was too low and was dropping.  According to Sister Stofferahn, I also kept complaining that the nurse wouldn't give me more juice (which was annoying, they wouldn't give me more because they said it would make me sick, which was ridiculous) and apparently I was being particularly sassy and rolling my eyes when they told me to do things.  All I know is that both my comp and Sis Elzinga were laughing really hard, so I'm glad I could entertain them.  Then they pumped me full of drugs and let me go, and after lunch at Jason's and a short nap on the way home, we were back to work teaching lessons and knocking doors.  But let me tell you, I don't think I've ever been so exhausted when I finally went to bed that night.  And then the next morning we presented at zone meeting, so there wasn't really any time to rest!  Except, on my bad, sometimes during lessons.  Yeah, oops.  That hydrocodone they gave me made me horribly sleepy, so no more of that after a day or two.  Can't be falling asleep in lessons or Relief Society...yeeeaaah.

But so yeah.  

Other than surgery and the accompanying awkward doctor's appointments, this week was wonderful.  We were exhausted, we were - at least in my case - on drugs, but we were working hard and we saw miracles.  For example, Aljae.  Aljae is SO amazing.  He called us earlier this week to tell us that he had been reading the Book of Mormon, specifically 2 Nephi 31, and while reading it had had the most amazing sensation come over his whole body, and he knew that it was the Spirit, that the Book of Mormon was true, and that Joseph Smith was a prophet.  (As if that phone call on it's own wasn't enough, Sister Stofferahn made the whole thing even better because she thought that he had said he felt "Satan taking over his body" and so was like freaking out when I was all "oh that is so great!"  Yeah, speakerphone problems).  Aljae is just so incredible though, because he has such a powerful testimony of his own that he has received through diligently keeping commitments.  Yesterday after church he told us all about they had discussed priesthood duties in church, and how excited he was to receive the priesthood himself after his baptism.  I am so grateful for Aljae, and so grateful for the power of the Book of Mormon to invite to Spirit to testify of truth.

We also had such a special experience in the hospital, actually, with the nurse who put my IV in (and apparently I have really small veins, so that was nice to discover).  She was asking us about what we do (missionaries are so confusing to hospitals - we call each other sisters but we're not sisters, we're not from here but we're not students, we're employed by a church but actually employees...yeah, very confusing to everyone) and we were telling her about how we teach people about the gospel of Jesus Christ and so we started exchanging our favorite Bible verses and talking about much peace Christ brings.  By the time the IV was (painfully) in and before the nurse left, she thanked us for being the highlight of her whole day and bringing such light to her morning.  And it made me realize just how important it is that we, as representatives of Jesus Christ, are always doing what 2 Timothy 4:12 counsels us to do and being EXAMPLES of the believers.  At home, at work, in church, in surgery, EVERYWHERE.  Just as Sister Cook counseled our mission a little while ago, "we are the message." We are standing as witnesses of Christ at all times and in all things and in all places, and I'm not just talking about us full time missionaries.  There are few things as destructive as a covenanted follower of Christ acting contrary to the name he or she took upon themselves.  So where e'er thou art, act well thy part.  Make Christ proud as you carry His name.

Thank yall so much for all your prayers and efforts and help in the work of salvation.  Keep praying and reading and sharing Mormon Messages because those things are the BOMB.

Love,
Sister Enright

 ​Downtown Houston bright and early in the morning :)


​and post surgery at Jason's Deli, where I could have all the juice I wanted

Monday, September 8, 2014

(Kegan)

Hello everybody, wherever you happen to be in the world (even though the large majority of you are most certainly in the States)

This past week in Placilla has surprisingly wet and cold, I feel as if I stepped suddenly from one part of the world (Chile) and into another (Another part of Chile that looks as rainy as Washington does).  So I wasn´t being that imaginative, but it WAS raining a whole lot. 

That meant I was able to put into use the Snow boots and rain coat I brought down here more than a year ago, however I still have not been able to find out a good way to use the boots nor the coat to keep my backpack from getting very wet.  I´m open to any ideas.

Seeing as I am somewhat new to this part of the mission, my wonderful companion Elder Oldroyd (Old-Droid/R2-D2) has been guiding me around what has been a very flat and rich area in comparison to those that came before it.

I have loved working with Elder Oldroyd, we had a good amount of success searching this week for new investigators and even for the ones we´ve got.

We started off the week with service, moving a literal mountain of wheel chairs from one lot to another.  There was totally a Bonus-Dead-Dog´s-Mandible underneath one of the last wheelchairs that we became stupidly excited about.  It´s very true that the miracles come after our work and faith. :)

We had an awesome lesson in the home of an elderly woman named Rosa who was slightly apprehensive (but not TOO much) at the start,  as she listened to our message she began to be very interested and at the end kneeled to pray with us.  It was a slightly awkward moment.  We hadn´t explained that we meant that she could pray OUT LOUD, and so she proceeded to pray in complete silence, we never interrupted her (evan though the small room required awkward and painful contortions of our knees to get the trick done) and as she finished praying tears came into her eyes.  She explained the relaxing and comforting feeling that had come over her even though she had been through a rough week.  My companion and I were super happy to explain to her the power of the spirit and leave with a commitment to read the Book of Mormon.

In fast and Testimony meeting I was able to briefly share the same story to our entire ward.  Placilla is full of many families in which not all are members, the hard part is that the majority of them live in another sector worked in by the two hermanas in our ward, the majority of the ward leaders also live there.  Stinking Hermanas

...and no I am not bitter about, nor are Elder Oldroyd and I encouraging a competetive spirit against the Hermanas, that would be ridiculous.

I guess in short I could put it like this. I know for a fact the Spirit will always testify to those who listen of the truth of the restoration, that moment repeated itself at least one other time this week and the Spirit without fail was there.

Thank you to everyone for your support, prayers, and missionary efforts where you are, remember the Spirit will ALWAYS testify of the truth, but he is not going to open our mouths for us.

Love ELder ENright

 Elder Oldroyd and ELder Enright (at Hermano Quintanilla´s, where we had service)

 Interchanges with ELder Larson

My comp thought my Sunglasses were awesome

Miracle on Avenida Alvear (on sunday) (Rhys)

So, just last week after emailing, I had to fill out a survey thing that 90% of the mission supuestamente also had to fill out and the whole thing is supposed to be in preparation for the possible arrival of a general authority to the mission. Nothing has officially been announced by Pte. Franco, but I´m hoping to have and incoming General Authority soon.

       Aside from that, this week was filled with me and my comp trying hard to get members of our branch to charlas with our investigators, be they new or antiguo. In most cases, the cita ended up falling through and left us with time to talk to everyone we see/pass by in the street. Which led to some interesting contacts and lessons. One of said lessons was with a guy literally named Fruto-Sergio (sorry, this space bar has about a 70% percent actually-will-work-rate, I can get it to work better by really pounding it) who really seemed to have a sincere desire to change and come to church (didn´t come), but had a really hard time understanding and remembering what we told him, turns out he smoked a lot of drugs as a teenager and is still trying to stop. Kids, just say NO. A few minutes after said lesson, a lady named Mariela let us into her front yard to teach her and insisted that she never admitted missionaries or anyone like us to pass and didn´t know why, but she wanted to listen to us. We had a a pretty good lesson and even got her to say the closing prayer, which kind of made her cry a little bit. . . oops. But all in all a good lesson, the only problem was that she said that she wouldn´t be able to make it to church on Sunday, which then brings us to Sunday.

        On Sunday, none of the investigators that promised to come to church ever actually showed up, even when we passed by some of their homes. The miracle actually consists of two miracles. The first one being that Matias, the grandson of our recent Convert (Hno. Soto, who basically raised him), showed up at church, even though it´s been about two weeks since we talked to him, he said that he´d like to come to church, but never came and though we passed by his house several times, we never found him. But an invitation from his Grandpa got him to church and he loved it. As Sacrament meeting was starting, I was sitting next to Hno. Soto and Matias, and a woman walked in with her little 2 or 3 year old daughter that I at first didn´t recognize. Then when my comp looked at me and asked me if I recognized her too I felt bad because I then knew who it was, Mariela!! She just up and decided to come to church, looks like. they both liked it and we´ll be visiting them during the week.

        Sunday night(last night) we had a noche de Hogar with Claudio en la casa de Hermana Velasquez that was a huge success. We talked about and shared testimonies and played tuti-fruti. Also last night, really quick before bed, I made a pizza for me and Elder Correa, waking up and going on a run was a little harder to do with late night pizza in our stomachs, but it was worth it.

I have pictures to send, but none of the computers here seem to accept a usb so far. .. Sorry

Elder Enright

Another short one because I'm still learning to type one-handed (Bayley)

So as many of you have already heard, I will be needing to get surgery on my wrist.  So that's grand.  It will actually be a huge blessing because it will mean I won't need to be in a hard cast for a long time, and I'll be able to quickly return to "almost full function," which is good enough for me right now, since the splint I've had on for a week now certainly doesn't enable *any* full function.  Or any function at all actually other than being a great conversation starter when contacting.  Transitioning from the broken wrist to the gospel isn't exactly the smoothest transition, but let me tell you, if my mission has taught me anything it has taught me how to relate anything and EVERYTHING back to the restoration of the gospel.

But something I've seen this week is just how great God is - which honestly is something we see every day, but it turns out that when you're out in the heat and humidity in a splint and sling and feeling kind of like this couldn't be worse *physically*, God makes sure that you are aware of all the spiritual blessings that surround you and make any physical ailment completely worth it.  Like for instance, remember Aljae?  Our awesome 17 year old investigator who told his Sunday School class yesterday all about his baptism?  Yeah, him.  Well, yesterday he started talking about how he wants to go on a mission, which would kind of be my favorite thing ever.

Another miracle of the week was Diane - a woman who referred herself on mormon.org requesting a Book of Mormon.  You gotta love it when it's them finding you instead of the other way around.  Turns out that she has been in touch with an old friend who is a member living in Utah, who suggested she read the Book of Mormon and get in contact with missionaries.  And she did!  She is super amazing, has already committed to baptism and come to church and says that she feels like this is what God wants for her.  I have developed SUCH a strong testimony that God is really preparing people, and that there are those around us desperately seeking what we have!

So yeah, definitely a week of miracles.

Last thing.

I've been thinking a lot about the idea of feeding our spirits.  D&C 101:37 counsels us to "care for the life of the soul," and in a brilliant Mormon Message (Daily Bread: Pattern - if you haven't seen it yet, go and do) D. Todd Christofferson compares our need for daily spiritual nourishment to our need for daily physical nourishment.  And in watching in for like the billioneth time this last week, it just hit me really hard how true that is - how much our soul is both our physical and spiritual bodies, and that we cannot get away with feeding just one and neglecting the other.  Especially when you think about how much we are counseled that the "natural man is an enemy to God," and that a test of this life is for our spirits to have control over our bodies, not the other way around.  But if the only aspect of your soul that you are really feeding is your physical body, how can you possibly expect your spirit to have the strength it needs to help you fight temptation and weariness and opposition?  There is absolutely NO substitute for the spiritual strength that is built from daily spiritual nourishment through prayer and scripture reading.

So just read your scriptures and say your prayers.  Every day.  Ok?  Ok.

Thank yall so much for all your prayers and all you're doing.

Love,
Sister Enright