Monday, November 25, 2013

Mensaje Nuevo

If I could sleep for half a year like a bear, I would!

Hey everyone! 
This week has been a bit weird for me. We've had something to go to or be at almost every day this week. Oh, and that's other than the normal mission stuff.

To start out, Monday we had choir. Yes, I'm in a choir. It's a choir of selected individuals from all of the mission. We meet two times a week to practice. Our first performance is on the seventh. We're singing some hymns in Spanish, and a version of the Twelve Days of Christmas in Portuguese. It's interesting, because Portuguese is really close to Spanish, but... different. It's kinda hard to explain.

Tuesday we had our district meeting like normal. However, right after, Elder Campos had to go to emigrations, so I went on splits with a member of our ward. Boy, was that difficult. I had to do practically all of the talking, contacting, and everything else Elder Campos and I worked together on. That was an adventure.

On Wednesday, we had a multi-zone conference with our mission president. It was a big training thing with three different zones, and they talked about stuff like health, stress, and other important things to remember.

On Thursday, We went and helped with some service for the pensionista of the Hermanas. We sanded her walls, and did some painting.

On Friday, we had Choir again! YAY! However, after choir we had to do our weekly planning session, which always takes about two hours, so that was fun.

On Saturday, nothing happened.

On Sunday, (yesterday) there wasn't sacrament meeting, because they had elections down here, and the time for voting was right at the time of the meetings, so there just weren't any meetings. Another thing that happened was that we didn't have anywhere to go for lunch. (On Sundays we always eat with the members, but because of the elections, the schedule was messed up), so we called one of the members and they said they would feed us. Anyway, it was also a pretty normal proselyting day, and at one of the houses, they invited us in to try a little food. It turns out, a "little food" is actually a lot of food. After this, we had to go to the members who'd invited us too, so yesterday I had four meals. Breakfast, Lunch, lunch, and dinner. 
In the afternoon, we had a satellite transmission for all of the South American countries, so that was interesting. It was about "Hastening the Work of Salvation."

Anyway, that about sums up this week. I love you all, and wish you un ¡Feliz Día de Gracias! I could make a list of all the things I'm grateful for, but I don't have another hour to write it. Thanks for all your emails and all your support!

Well, I'm off to eat something either (1) salty (2) sweet, or (3) ew, what is that? Thanks!

-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

P.S. So, I've started a collection on copies of the Book of Mormon. Right now, I have one in Portuguese, French, Spanish, and English :)


-Elder Smith

Sunday, November 24, 2013

Juegos de Video y Helado

Okay, the title is a lie, I can't play video games, and I don't have any ice cream.  But hey everyone!

This week has been pretty great! But before I explain more in depth, I'm going to answer a few questions.

The dinosaur was a gift from our favorite recent convert, Hna Mary Luz! Yay!

The baptism was this past Saturday. It was for our investigator Maria Molato. Elder Campos did this one, but the next one is definitely mine. ;)

Yes, the package made it here in one piece. Thank you so much for the letters, candy, and gifts! (I'm being good and not opening them till Christmas. Or at least until I can't stand the wait any longer. ;)

Aw man. I really need that picture of the snow. ;) I actually miss being cold. :P
I can't wait until we're able to Skype on Christmas, (Yes, we get to Skype! How cool is that!) so I can see those two little trouble makers, Evalee and Kaylee. Oh, and the rest of the family too. I guess. ;)
Congrats to Dave on his new job! ¡Felicidades!

Feliz Cumpleaños, David! Did you save me a piece of that pie?

I don't have much more time, but it's been a good week. Elder Campos and I have been having some awesome adventures.

Our most recent focus has been an investigator named Enoc Paz. His wife and daughter are members of the church, and his baptism date is set for the 30th of November. He is really invested in the lessons, and he really wants to get baptized so he can be sealed in the temple with his family. 

Thanks so much for everything!

With lots of love,
-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Hay Diez Platinos Rojos

Hola Amigos y Familia!! 

I have to say, this week has been pretty long. I always seem to be tired, but I guess that's normal for missionaries. We work our bodies, spirits, and minds (especially in my case while learning the language) constantly, so it only makes sense that I feel tired. I'm just glad that I have P-day every week to kind-of "recharge."

I met a dinosaur this week.

Elder Campos and I didn't have any baptisms this week, however! we do have one this coming Saturday, so let's pray that nothing goes wrong. Fingers crossed.

Glad to hear that everything is going well en Los Estados Unidos. I have to say, I really miss the luxuries that we have up there, however, this is an experience I wouldn't give up.

So far, the MegaMind watch has worked great, but I don't know how well it will fare with the test of... Time. Get it? Watch? Time? Yeah? Anyone?...Bueller?

Okay, So if the package is a La Oficina día de hoy, it will get put with the mail for our zone, and I'll get it at the zone conference tomorrow from my zone leader.

I'm glad to hear that after everything, (the house being flooded and all), that things are finally starting to calm down at home.

Oh! and I need a picture of the first snowfall. I'm not going to see snow for two years otherwise. ;)

Thanks for all your help and support! I pray for you all every day! This is the Lord's work, and the field is all white, ready for the harvest. Keep on going! Never give up! Never surrender!

-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

Sunday, November 10, 2013

Un Titulo en Espanol

Buenos días familia y amigos! Greetings from the dirtiest place in South America!

I have to say, Halloween was kind of boring down here. It does exist, but the government is not very fond of it.  I saw tons of fliers saying not to celebrate Halloween, and there were only very few people actually "trick-o-treating."  It's definitely not as big as in the states, and I have to say I really missed dressing up. :P Well, only two more years till I can, right?

This has been a slow week for us down here. Our district in particular hasn't been having really good success. That may be due to it having four trainees, or something else I don't know, but it's been pretty rough. Anyway, we didn't have a baptism this week, but we have four investigators that are really close.

Funny story time! This Saturday, we were doing service at the house of Hna Mary Luz one last time, and it was only me and Elder Campos, and we went with her to the store to get supplies for cleaning, and, well, she bought herself, Elder Campos and me, watches. They're cheap replication watches, only like 6 or 7 dollars, but nevertheless, I have a new watch now. I thought it was really funny. It looks like the watch from MegaMind.

Spanish has been coming along nicely, Elder Campos insisted that I give my testimony in sacrament meeting this week, and I felt really comfortable doing so. I've also been able to participate in teaching the lessons about 50/50, like it should be. So that's pretty alright. Really, the only issue I really struggle with is understanding everything people say.

I'm glad to hear everything is going great at home, and it sounds like Halloween was fun! And the package, if you send it on Wednesday should get here either next week or the week after. 

Thanks so much everyone! I love you all!

-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Bautismo Numero Dos

Hey everybody!

Entonces! This week has been exciting, we had the baptism for Hermana Mary Luz this week.  (I had her name wrong before).

We spent a lot of time preparing Hermana Mary Luz for her baptism. She really is an amazing convert and a great person. Elder Campos performed the baptism on Saturday, and the confirmation was the following day, done by the bishopric. 

Here's an exciting thing that happened this week, Elder Campos had it set hard in his head that we needed to paint our room... And I wasn't going to talk him out of it, so we painted our cuarto. It was just us, so it took a couple of hours, but I do have to say that it looks a lot better. Before it was just concrete grey, but now it's a light creamish color. So, that was an adventure.

We have a problem with our ward down here. They really don't want to do anything to help.  Por Ejemplo! At the baptism of Hermana Mary, we didn't have hardly anyone show up. The Sunday before we went around to all the classes and asked them if they would attend, and they said they would, but not many people actually showed up. They need to understand that the conversos nuevos (new converts) need the support of the ward. Anyway, enough about that.

I've noticed something down here. The members don't really understand the concept of "the sabbath day." Yesterday, we were eating with one of the families in our ward, (we have lunch with a different family every Sunday), and one of the members left for a couple minutes, and came back with some bananas and a box with a couple donuts. I was a little surprised, but I didn't want to say anything, but I just kept thinking to myself "Hermana! That's against the commandments! Those donuts were purchased on the Sabbath Day!" It's a little funny how the members down here are.


It's always so nice to hear from everyone at home every week, and thanks so much for the pictures! I'm so glad to hear that everything's still alright in the States. And this Thursday marks three months in the field! The time is flying! That's 1/8 of my mission. Before I know it, I'll be back home.
I don't really have any more time to write, So I'll leave you with this. Every grey cloud has a silver lining. If your circumstances look bleak, always try and look for the good in every situation. In this is true happiness.
Elder Daniel Smith