Monday, February 10, 2014

Habiendo Sido Comisionado . . .

Hello Family! Friends! Pepper!

Well, first off, this week we had our baptism with Hector! YAAAAAAYYY!!!!  Seriously, he's one of my investigators of gold. AND! Now that he's baptized, we have an in to his family. Yay, new investigators!

However, other than that, Nothing happened this week, because my companion was sick for three days, and we couldn't do anything. We tried to call people to go on splits, but no one was available, so I spent those three days sitting in my room, practicing solitaire (Using Phase 10 cards).  Seriously though, this week has been the slowest week I've ever had in the mission.

Monday was P-day, like normal, so we went to the Stake Center, ate some chicken, (as always), watched Monster's University, and played some soccer. After P-day was over, we had a family home evening with our pensionista, and made the snickerdoodles from my Christmas package. Yeah, it was about time.

Tuesday was a normal day, nothing to report.

Wednesday, my companion got sick, so we spent the day inside. (Sigh)

Thursday, was our Zone Conference.  We also had the baptismal interview with Hector.

Friday, My companion got sick again.

Saturday in the morning, we had the baptism service for Hector. It was a really good experience, and I felt the spirit really strong.
However, when we got back home, my companion had a sudden drop in his blood pressure and almost passed to the other side of the veil. That was just about the scariest moment of my life. Luckily, I remembered a good amount from my EMR class, so I was able to help, and our pensionista was there too, so we were really lucky. He's doing much better now, but he's had issues with this for all of his life. So, that was fun.
Sunday was pretty normal, nothing much to report.

Well, that's all the time I have today to write, but I love all of you! Yes, even you.

Until next week,
-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Arriba en Llamas! (Not the Animal)

Hello, hello my beloved family and friends!
It's been six months already, so you all have probably forgotten about me.

First off, I am praying fervently for Emily. The other missionaries in my district too.
Sand Snowman (Not Daniel's)
You all should feel lucky that you're freezing up there, I'm sure you don't want to be burning your buns off like I am. :P I tried to make a sand snowman, but it didn't work, and I felt sad inside.
I have to say that although there is still a lot of dust, the air is a lot clearer here in Happyville. For that, I am super happy.

Oh, and the chicken foot last week? It wasn't all that bad. It was like a chicken lollypop that had fingers, and was slimy.

And did I burn a tie? Yes, yes I did. For my six months, Me, my companion, and one of the pre-missionaries in our ward celebrated with the tie burning and PIZZA. It was epic. Enclosed is a photo of me squirting rubbing alcohol onto the burning tie. :D It was an epic night, and super fun.

It's time for a story! 

So, me and my companion were going out to Plaza Vea (a super market) to buy some medicine for his eyes. On the way back, we saw a swarm of the Jehovah's witnesses. I thought to myself, oh shoot, we're probably going to half to talk to one of them. I was right. One of them eagerly stopped us to tell us about the kingdom of Jehovah in the earth. I have to congratulate them for their eagerness. The thing is, she kept talking... and talking... and reading weird scriptures from their translation of the bible... and talking some more. The thing is, whenever we tried to read a scripture, or share our opinions, she shut us down... and kept talking. This one Jehovah's Witness was talking at us for at least 45 minutes. The best part however, is that she gave us TEN pamphlets. TEN OF THEM.  Later I got a chance to look through them and see all the false doctrine, but it was an... experience. I feel a lot less inclined to listen to them because they refuse to listen to us. I was actually pretty impressed with her knowledge of her Bible though. Good work, I guess.
So we had a pretty cool experience this past week. We were in a lesson with Hector again, he had almost all the lessons at this point, and a plentitude of assistances, the only thing he was really missing was the date for his baptism. So, we were teaching the gospel of Jesus Christ, and after we had finished talking about baptism, he started expressing his feelings of how he wanted to be baptized, but didn't feel ready. I explained to him the importance of baptism, and how he is ready to be baptized. I felt an impression of the spirit to invite him to be baptized this same week... and he accepted. I saw the look on his face was a mixture of amazement and excitement that he could do it so soon. It's so cool to see how the spirit can touch the lives of these people, and the part most important is that the Lord doesn't need people to be perfect to be baptized. What he needs is people who understand and want to be baptized.

So that's the good news for this week, we're going to have a baptism this Saturday. :D

Well, those are the three big experiences for this week. Sad to say, I'm almost out of time, so be good all!! I love you and I'm praying for you!

With pantalones,
-Elder Dañel Jacob Smith

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Patas de Pollo

Hey, y'all!! 
It's your favorite time of the week, Email time!!  And, I was so astounded that dad was the one to write me that I fell off my chair. (Sorry Dad)

First off to answer a few questions!

No, bug repellant does NOTHING. These are SUPER mosquitoes. And SUPER mosquitoes means SUPER itchy.

Yes, our new pensionista still makes all of our food for us. However, we have to do our own laundry in the washing machine upstairs.
Is it cleaner in Villa Alegre? Is it cleaner? Ha! Yes. Yes it is. I guess the richer the people are, the cleaner they're required to be.

Sad to say, but we still don't use bikes. That is the bike of our pensionista's son. No, we're still going on foot.
Christmas Dinner with our Mission
Elder Ortega is from Chile, he's 25 years old, he's allergic to bananas and shellfish. He really likes to talk, which helps me out a bit in the lessons. His favorite color is red, and he is addicted to chocolate. He also suffers from low blood sugar, so he has to eat something about every hour and a half.

Yep, we've got people to teach. The most notable, and probably our closest to baptism is Hector. He's 22, he's coming to church regularly, he has had a few of the lessons too. The only thing he's really missing is going under the water.

Anyway, I've enclosed a photo of the greatest thing ever. 

That was a lie, it's a picture of me eating chicken feet! It's pretty gross, and a little bit slimy. It's like a chicken flavored lolly-pop.

So, the notable occurrences of this past week are as follows: 

On Monday, we had our P-day, we watched Madagascar 3, played some volleyball and Futbol, and it was pretty fun. Other than that, no pasa nada.

On Tuesday was our district meeting. The rest of the day we spent in lessons.

On Wednesday we had interviews with our mission president, like he does every 3-4 months. So, that took up most of the day. Other than that there was mission correlation and ward council.
Picture of our choir from December with our Mission President and his wife.
Thursday was the same as always. However, about halfway through the day, we had divisions with our district leader. That went until Friday morning.

Friday was the end of divisions. Other than that, not much happened. However, we did find two new investigators from contacting, so that was pretty cool.

Saturday was boring, because we didn't have hardly any lessons.

On Sunday was Sacrament meeting, and some lessons. Pretty ordinary week, right?

One thing that we've been doing recently is we've been working a lot with the ward missionaries, most of which are young men preparing for their missions, so that's been pretty alright. This accomplishes two things. Number one, we have more lessons with members present, and that's always fantastic. Two, we're helping in the preparation of these new missionaries.

It's always really cool to see the light in people's eyes change when talking about the gospel. The other day, we were at the house of one of our investigating families. The lesson we were teaching was the plan of salvation, and the thing with this family is that their dad had passed away. When we told them that they could live together forever with their dad, Their whole expression changed. It was really cool. 
It's also interesting to think about how these things that are so well known to us are something completely new to them. I guess that's why we're here, right? To share with these people the things that we have, and they don't.

As always, I'm continually praying for you all, Emily now as well. 
Remember that the shortest way between two points is Parkour. Have fun, and keep on keeping on!

From your favorite Eldersito,
-Elder Dañel Jacobo Esmito
P.S. Here are a few more photos taken in December
Missionary Choir that I sang in

Another choir performance

Yet, another choir performance

Photo from our trip to the fountains at Parque de la Reserva