Monday, October 31, 2016

Kennedy and new comp: Elder Gonzalez

Hey Mom!!!!!
Thanks for the pictures and emails, I am doing great and my companion's name is Elder Gonzalez, he is from El Salvador in Central America, I realized I have had 3 companions from Central America now. He is a really cool guy, we are getting to know the area a bit more, and I remember most of the area but there is a lot that wasn`t part of my area when I was here so we did get a bit lost this week. But everything is good, the members help us a lot and we will have lots of lunches and food, so no worries. A lot of the members told me that I am more skinnier than when I was in Kennedy before haha.
The best part was seeing that some of the contacts that I started when I was here that were baptized. There was a lady named Martha that we worked with a lot, and we eventually had to stop visiting her because she wasn`t progressing.  I guess the missionaries returned after a while and she was baptized, and some other contacts I knew were baptized too, they remembered when I had visited them for the first time.
This week when we arrived we had 2 baptisms that were former contacts and we had the opportunity to teach them and they had their baptismal interviews and were baptized.  Their mom is now investigating the church too.
It's crazy to see the little gospel seeds that we plant in the lives of the people that we talk to, and sometimes we don`t see the fruits of our labors but there are many, like it says in Alma 36.
We also recieved the news that we can wear sombreros (hats) and I am very happy for that due to the heat. I haven`t gotten the packages you guys sent yet but we will have a zone training this Tuesday so maybe I will get them there. Other than that, not too much new, I am happy to be back in Kennedy and I know there is a lot of work to do, which makes me even happier. Hope you have a great week and tell Allan I say hi, and to keep going strong to leave for his mission!!!! Have a great week mom! Happy Halloween!!!!! 馃懟馃懟馃懟馃懟馃懟
Elder Spiro

Last lunch in Thompson

Saying Adios to the people of Thompson

Baptisms in Kennedy of former contacts

Monday, October 24, 2016

Tranfers and a soup that bites back

Hola Mama,
Thanks for your emails and pictures, no worries about my health, I am doing good and my toenail is healing well, they have all the medicine I need here so all is good. The news of this week is that I will be transferred to a new area!  I will be going to one of the areas I have been in before, an area named Kennedy. I will be the senior companion and we will be arriving in "Whitewash", which is when 2 missionaries arrive to an area at the same time, but luckily I remember a bit of the area so I`m not too worried.
It's kind of sad to have to leave my companion, he is a great guy and we got along well, it's really different when I have had American companions, I haven`t had any bad companions, but there is a difference when we are from the same country.
My week was good, the highlight as you guys saw was eating the piranha soup, we didn`t eat the piranha head, just the rest, but it was good! It tasted like any other fish really, not very different. I never thought that I would eat piranha in my life, let alone in Paraguay, but apparently they fish a lot of piranha here in the rivers. Sister Frontela had made us something else to eat, but she said she had some piranha soup left over and we decided to try it too haha.
Not much else this week, just the family that we had found couldn`t attend church because they were out of town, but they said they will come this next week for sure! They are really interested, and they were all waiting for us to get to their house on Saturday to teach them hopefully I will receive the news that they get baptized and I would be very happy.
I recently have been reading that part that you read to your class in 3 Nephi, it's very interesting to compare that part with the Bible, they are very similar.
I will try to get the picture book to Allan in some way, Kennedy is close to Thompson, we'll see what I can do so no worries. I still have my little tree from last year but I had to gift my advent calendar because there was no space in my suitcase, sorry :/
That's about it, next week you will have pictures of when I go to say goodbye to everyone, thanks again and hope you have an awesome week! Can`t wait to hear from you soon!
Elder Spiro

A family that lives near the elders

Some branch members

A kitty neighbor

In front of the church

Piranha soup!

Monday, October 17, 2016

Week of 10/17/16

Hey Mom,
Thanks for the emails and pictures, and the packages you are sending too! Normally, when we pass by the mission office we pick up the packages that have been sent, because there really isn`t a mail system here to send stuff easily and cheap, but it usually gets here fast. I`m glad to here you enjoyed your time in Utah, I`m sure the weather is a lot nicer there, it began to get super warm here this week, and I think the change made me a bit sick again. I had a really high fever and my head hurt a ton, but I rested and I feel much better now, and the medicine that you had given me before the mission helped.
This week we had 2 investigators come to church, they can`t progress much because 1 needs to get married but her boyfriend has to get divorced first and the other has to have the signature of her parents and they don`t seem to want to sign. We encountered a miracle yesterday, as we were walking to our lunch we had a girl and a guy stop us in the street asking us to stop by their house because they had a lot of questions about religion and they wanted to know more about a sister that had passed away.  We arrived at the house and there were a ton of people that lived there, all brothers and sisters around the ages of 20-24 and they had a bunch of questions about the church and we shared with them about the plan of salvation, I could tell they felt the spirit and one of them said "This church is one of the better ones that we have found" but the only problem is that they are only home on Saturdays and Sundays, but they are interested in attending church.

The other couple we had found the other week couldn`t come to church, the husband works a lot and that is one of the problems we have found is that people usually aren`t home because they are working, but I know if we keep searching we will find more families!
I was studying my patriarchal blessing the other day and every time I read it I notice more and more things, it really helped me to give me motivation to keep moving forward and working hard, so I invite you guys to read your patriarchal blessings and to pray before you are going to study them, it really is powerful the revelation we can recieve.
That's about it for the week, I hope you are all well and keeping up with the Book of Mormon reading! Tell me what part you guys are reading, I am in 3 Nephi 26 right now, close to the end. I also forgot to add that I had another ingrown toenail this week too, so that wasn`t very fun, more needles, but it was luckily only one toenail and I hope it heals quickly.
Have a great week, always praying for you all and can`t wait to hear from you next week!
Elder Spiro

Alex's district at the temple

The front walkway by their home

A district activity

The whole zone

Monday, October 10, 2016

Week of 10/10/16

Hola mama!!!
First I have to say sorry that there won`t be any pictures this week, the computers we are using don`t have the USB plug to connect my camera, but next week for sure!!!!!
I am jealous of your Harry Potter world experience, and the pictures are awesome! It's cool that Ryan works there, I like all the details they put in everything, were there a lot of people there when you guys went? 
Thanks for the stuff you are sending, I will be sending the Christmas cards soon, so I`ll try to send them more earlier this year, I sent Nana a card but I don`t know when it will get there. 

Everything else is great, we didn`t have any investigators come to church and there were only about 34-36 people at church, we don`t know why. We left Sunday with hopes to find new people and we searched and searched even though we were tired and I was a bit stressed, and about the last house we contacted for the day we found a awesome family that was very nice and willing to listen, the only problem is that the husband works from Monday to Saturday and at his work all day. But, we are going to keep being obedient and working hard and I know the blessings will come.
Everything else has been good, my companion was a bit sick this week but I am much better, trying to eat less candy and junk food, more fruits and meats to give me energy and it is helping a lot. I am learning a lot about patience and hope in this area, sometimes we have a lot of people to teach and at other times we search all day long and we can`t find anyone, but I have learned to accept the will of the Lord before wanting the things to happen when I want them to happen, and I am grateful for that.
For the Christmas package, the only 2 things I need is some P90x Cds, the ones that have exercises where I don`t need weights (Dad can help you to find which ones) and duct tape, but just a little bit. The problem with books/movies is that we can  only read and watch the stuff that has the church seal on it, a lot of the stuff is about the church but not made by the church. The CTR rings from last year were great, I have handed them out to the people I have baptized. Maybe some little things like a card holder for my temple reccommend, I know they sell stuff like that at the Deseret Book store.
But thanks Mom for everything, hope you have a great week and let me know if I can do anything for you guys, can`t wait to hear from you soon and always keeping you in my prayers!!!! Go Utes!!!!
Elder Spiro

Monday, October 3, 2016

Conference notes

Hey Mom,
Glad to hear everyone is well and I hope you all enjoyed conference, we were able to watch it in the branch house here in Thompson, normally they just have it in the stake center but they had it in all the church buildings for this conference. The only problem was that it was only in Spanish, and its not that I don`t understand, it's just different when it's not the speaker`s actual voice. But I enjoyed it, and I also really like the talk from Elder Cornish, sometimes we always make comparisons and really we shouldn`t, everyone is different and progresses differently. I also enjoyed Elder Bednar`s talk, he is always very specific and uses a lot of doctrine in his talks, and its very interesting to hear different forms of the things we are studying every day.
We unfortunatelty didn`t have any investigators come to church, we had invited a ton and we went in between the conference sessions to invite people, but nobody came. It's another lesson for me that people have their agency, we just need to do our part and invite and testify. We do have investigators, we just need to help them understand more and see if they have a desire to progress.
I wasn`t feeling too well during the conference either, I couldn`t concentrate very well, but no worries, I`m sure it was just a stomach virus and I am feeling better now. Today we are going to go to the temple to clean so that should be a great experience as always.
Not much else new, we are helping Allan to prepare for his mission, and I have been thinking a lot this past week in my personal conversion to the gospel. A lot of times as missionaries we study and learn things to help investigators or members when they have a question or problem, and sometimes they accept what we teach and sometimes they don`t, but I think what we as missionaries don`t realize is that the things we learn and live help us to become more converted every day and to live what we teach and have experiences is the best way to gain a testimony.
Not much else this week, just working hard and trying to do my best, hopefully I will feel better these next few days and thanks for the pictures and updates! I am feeling good, just a bit tired but that is normal, I am eating better now, and that helps a bit too. Have a great week! Hopefully the Utes can win this week!!!!
Elder Spiro

Family home evening