This week was one where the days were long and hot but full of work so, it flew by!
I learned a couple of things about Argentina this week. First, never ask anyone about the Falcon Islands, which are at the bottom of the country, because you will be lectured for thirty minutes about "what really happened" in the war with England. I also learned that in some cemeteries the caskets are put into little rooms where, through a window, you can see the caskets which are full of dead people. This was a pretty scary discovery for me. While we were walking through a cemetery this week, I had the creeps!
As far as the work goes, we had a busy week. We have a decent pool of investigators right now and it is so gratifying to see them progress in their special ways. For some, it’s trying to pray and read the scriptures, while for others, it’s trying to quit smoking or drinking. Each person we come in contact with has their unique need, so this requires us to be on top of our game to first, identify the need and second, to help find a solution. This is what missionary work is all about!
We were able to fix baptism dates for our boys, Pedro and Francisco, who are the grandsons of a menos activo we've been teaching. We are teaching the boys' parents and other brother but since Pedro and Francisco are always at their grandma's house, we've been able to teach them on a more consistent basis. Both boys are such studs, but like all teenagers during the summer months, they like to do whatever they want. Sometimes we have to whip them into shape and remind them that they can't just play soccer all day, everyday. We've taught them all of the missionary lessons and they have relationships with the ward members so their future as members looks promising. I'm pumped for them! This week they asked us what they need to do in order to pass the sacrament and I thought that was the coolest thing!
This weekend our ward had a youth dance with the other ward in Villa Mercedes. Since I'm still 18 years-old and technically the age of a "young man" I tried all week long to convince the leaders that I should allowed to attend the dance, but it didn't work. I guess my Spanish isn't clear enough so I'm not too convincing. Even so, the dance was a success for us because a couple of our investigators attended and they had a blast which makes our job as missionaries so much easier. Instead of searching for friends within the Church for our investigators, they are already there... just waiting on the dance floor. LOL!
One of the bummer parts of the week was getting a text from one of the families we are teaching telling us that they aren't in the position to receive us anymore. This was so disappointing because we had a couple of awesome lessons with them and they had tons of questions for us. I realize, however, that his is just the process as a missionary. Everyone has their agency and it's a tough lesson to accept sometimes.
A few weeks ago, during our weekly planning session, we went through our phone and called a bunch of people in our contacts who we didn't know. We did this to see if we could find more people to teach. One of the people we contacted was Leila. Leila is 22 years-old and she received the sister missionaries a while ago but she doesn't remember much about what they taught her. She works a ton so she's hard to meet with but we had a pretty cool lesson with her this week. She had some bad things happen with her marriage and now she is in the process of getting a divorce. Consequently, she's asking a lot of "why?" questions right now. In our lessons, she grills us with questions and gives us "homework" for the next lesson. Sometimes she’s a real tough cookie to crack but she's very receptive to our message and after we taught her about the Word of Wisdom, she even stopped smoking. She's looking for something more in her life and let's just hope we have it for her.
We were also able to teach Nano (yes, like IPod Nano) again, the boyfriend of one of our young women. Like me, he was disappointed that he couldn't go to the dance on Friday night. While teaching him this week, we learned that his mom is a member of the Church. She was baptized when she was 18 years-old but when she moved from Mendoza, she stopped attending church. We were so excited to hear this! Now, we've just got to find this lady so we can reactivate her while teaching Nano. Nano is such a stud! He's started to play soccer with us on P-Days and while we play, he makes me look like an absolute fool. He has also been attending church with us every Sunday, so the future is BRIGHT for him!
I hope everyone enjoyed Valentine’s Day with all the lovey dovey stuff. I sure missed not attending Highland High on Valentine’s Day because I always looked forward to seeing the life-size teddy bears all over the place!
Also, our bishop showed us the video of the MoTab singing "America the Beautiful" at the inauguration of Donald Trump and that was way sick! “SO” to the MoTab!
Keep it real and have a great week,