So this week was suuuuper challenging and Hna Christianson and I are still trying to figure out why... but I`m staying positive because I ended up having a great experience in Ignacio despite not having much to work with in the beginning.
Anyways, problema numero uno from PC is MARRIAGE. We are currently teaching 5 families who aren`t married, 4 of which have been investigating for a significant amount of time -- Familias Valles, Zeta, Rocio and her kids, and familia Pacheco. Luckily Familia Valles and Pacheco are making headway on their marriage papers (side note-- getting married in Peru is SO complicated! It`s annoying). Familia Pacheco should be baptized this month for sure. Rocio`s husband is completely against the missionaries and according to Hna C we`ve barely seen him before...so that might take a little work. It`s just SO sad because she and her kids are at church every single week and are reading their scriptures and everything. And then Familia Zeta has two kids who have been baptized, Rosita is the leader of the young adults and Christian is primary age. Their dad Pablo has to go through a divorce before he gets married to Mercedes. And then last but not least, Familia Abad are the ones we just found and literally I wanted to cry when Magali told us they aren`t married. UGH. My patience is being tried in this area... but let`s look at the positives this week!
Angeles (age 18, Magali`s daughter) has a baptismal date! She is amazing. She comes from tough conditions and both her grandma and mom were pregnant by age 15. She told us that she`s determined not to take the same path. After teaching her the Restoration the first time, she told us that she went to her room directly afterwards to pray to know if Joseph Smith was a prophet and felt peace. She is so eager to participate in activities and is becoming friends with Rosita Zeta! WE LOVE HER.
Jefferson is progressing super well. He said that since he`s been meeting with us he gets angry less often, which used to be a weakness for him. The only bummer was that he couldn`t come to church! When we passed by that afternoon he said that his family didn`t have enough money to come. (The bus is 2 soles per person in total, there and back, which is about 66 cents in the US) They are really really poor. We will make sure that doesn`t happen again :(
We had intercambios this week with las hermanas de Los Ficus! I went over to their area with Hna Sandison. That girl is seriously the greatest example to me. She was baptized just over a year ago (from Twin Falls ID). Her mom is waaay Catholic, her dad is Christian, her sister is Atheist, and they show her anti-mormon stuff all the time but she is SO STRONG. I feel like I learned way more from her than she could`ve learned from me that day.
WHILE we were there, Hna Christianson and Hna Mitchell were knocking on a door in our area when a man opened and said ¨We`ve been waiting for you!! Come on in!!¨ They were sooo confused until he explained that we had contacted his wife onein Plaza Vea and she had told her whole family about it! Ricardo was investigating the church as a teenager and they are super eager to learn more!! WOO HOO!! I`m grateful for Hna C for teaching me to contact ALL THE TIME AND EVERYONE, even P days.
For New Years our recent convert Hno Henry brought us dinner (he is seriously hilarious and one of my fav people). The next day we walked by piles of ashes in the streets because here in Peru they have the tradition to burn a giant straw doll at! Haha, pretty crazy.
In district mtg this week we learned about SIMPLIFYING the way we teach The Restoration. This is such an important principle.
It goes right along with Elder Uchtdorf`s talk from last conference. He says somethign along the lines of: Äre we making our discipleship too complicated? The gospel of Jesus Christ is simple enough that even a child can understand and live it.
During my mission it`s like the basic principles of the gospel have been further ingrained in my heart and my love for them has deepened signficantly.
I know our Heavenly Father loves us.
He has a plan for us.
Jesus Christ has restored His Church on the earth through the prophet Joseph Smith.
The Book of Mormon is the word of God.
Of these things I know to be true!!
Intercambios with Hna Sandison, a little sunburnt
The bamboo used to construct houses in La Legua
Going running on New Years Day
District meeting with missionaries from Texas, Arizona, Lima, and Oregon (Elder Williams is from near Salem... we are the only missionaries from Oregon in the mission!)