Monday, December 22, 2014

This week was interesting. One day when we were leaving the apartment, we saw two missionaries talking with a member on a street corner. Turns out they were from the MTC and were sent out to contact people. They were from Brazil, and the showed us a map with the divisions of our area into about 12 companionships. We found two other Elders from the U.S. On a bus, we saw a bunch of missionaries, including sisters, waiting for a bus to go to the Chapel in Ballester to go back to the MTC. We received two referrals from them, one from each of the companionships we talked to.

All but three of the members we had scheduled to accompany us failed. It's difficult because people have lives and their stresses, and we can forget that too often. But it is sad when our plans start falling through. Even still, the members here are wonderful. They support us a lot.

We went by the house of a recent convert who just turned 16. His internet wasn't working and couldn't figure out how to use it, so I went on and within a couple of minutes it worked. He said "you've got to be kidding me." He said the place he was going to take it would charge almost $1000 pesos to get it fixed.

The Ward had a Christmas Dinner on Friday, but we had to leave after about half an hour, and they were just setting up during that time. The food wasn't done, but we had to be in the apartment on time so we didn't eat. It rained Saturday and Sunday. It was great. I always seem to work better when it's raining, but people generally are less likely to listen or let us in.

There is a real "Christmas Spirit" that has an effect on people. They've been more open to invitations. This time reminds us of things as they really are, that Christ did indeed come to us. I hope that during this Christmas we can learn and prayerfully apply more abundantly the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our lives. We will find greater joy and peace by following the counsel of the Master. The Gospel is simple, but not always easy. We too often are tempted to excuse ourselves or others from the pathway to greater happiness.

And it came to pass after I, Nephi, having heard all the words of my father, concerning the things which he saw in a vision, and also the things which he spake by the power of the Holy Ghost, which power he received by faith on the Son of God—and the Son of God was the Messiah who should come—I, Nephi, was desirous also that I might see, and hear, and know of these things, by the power of the Holy Ghost, which is the gift of God unto all those who diligently seek him, as well in times of old as in the time thahe should manifest himself unto the children of men.

For he is the same yesterday, today, and forever; and the way is prepared for all men from the foundation of the world, if it so be that they repent and come unto him.

For he that diligently seeketh shall find; and the mysteries of God shall be unfolded unto them, by the power of the Holy Ghost,as well in these times as in times of old, and as well in times of old as in times to come; wherefore, the course of the Lord is one eternal round.
(1 Nephi 10:17-19)

Monday, December 15, 2014

It rained Saturday, which was very nice, but no one came to Church yesterday. We've been trying to get a lot of people to Church and it is proving to be very difficult. We've met a lot of people. We met a former investigator who received the missionaries about 10 years ago. Johnathan is moving to Quilmes for three weeks, but he's really interested.

I finally met the Villa-Luque family. They've been going to church for 15 years or more, but can't get baptized because she's married to someone else and can't get divorced yet. Their son was sustained as Elder's Quorum Secretary this Sunday and is going to go on a mission.

It pains me to see how as members of the Church we don't always see all of the blessings and responsibilities that we have, or can have. We are all responsible for living according to the testimony we've received. The parable of talents does not directly refer to "talents" but a very large measure of weight or wealth. The talents are not ours, neither are the gains we are required to make on them. They are the Lords. What we have been given much responsibility, but there is even more awaiting us after this life if we are faithful to the testimony and responsibility we've already received.

Monday, December 8, 2014

This week went well. We didn't have as many lessons because some of our members fell through. It stressed out Elder Jones a bit, but he's doing great.

Julio came to church again. We found out he's the Senate's adviser and the professor of a member in the ward. He told us a few stories about him, and he's very quiet, but he understands everything. He's always in Capital or somewhere else, so we've only talked to him through text messages.

We found Johnathan, who seems to have a lot of real interest. We keep running into him miraculously. He couldn't come this week, but he'll come next week. We've had a number of miracles, and I'm absolutely convinced that we don't find prepared people, they find us. But we find them faster through members.

We have a Zone Conference with President this week.

The "He is the Gift" initiative is very inspired. We have pass along cards that are very effective. It is a simple message, and many have their hearts softened because of Christmas. It is an excellent opportunity to invite someone to receive the blessings of the Restored Gospel in their lives.

Monday, December 1, 2014

This week was strange. My leg got much better, but my arm broke out in a rash, so I bought diphendyramine, but I became way to tired and dizzy, and I couldn't sleep because I felt so drugged. In the end, it only made the rash worse.

Julio couldn't come this Sunday because he's a professor of law and had something to do with a marriage in Capital. Jorge, who we found last week and has shown lots of interest, couldn't come either, but he said he wouldn't forget and would come this week. This week went a bit slow, and we've found lots of people who couldn't go this week.

There's a new Ward Mission Leader, who still isn't set apart. He's amazing. He seems to know everything by instinct. He received very little information about his calling, but he seems to know it better than many leaders I've seen. We feel very strongly that this ward will change dramatically.

The Church is doing a campaign "He is the Gift" and they made a great video. On the 7th, we'll be the only advertisments on YouTube.