Thursday, November 21, 2013

November 19, 2013

Dear Family, 

Everything down here is going well. We should be having some baptisms this week! My very first. Hopefully it pulls through. We did not hear about the typhoon; it's almost like we are in a bubble. We don't really know what goes on around us, simply what we are doing and supposed to do. I'll be sending you pictures next week of  my area hopefully some baptisms and just things down here. I didn't realize how big Santa Barbara is until this week we started going to different areas for certain people and things and its huge! And very pretty.  There are some parts where you  just think you are in the middle of the jungle, completely isolated. And I didn't notice probably because we walk so fast and just never stop to look around.  There are 4 volcanoes where I am and one is in my area. I'll try to get a picture of it.  It's huge!

But we have a little girl that should be getting baptized.  Her Mother is a recent convert but she never goes to church.  Her name is Karen Perez she is 10 I believe. We also have another Sister named Sidni Valasques.  She and her sister are scheduled to be baptized this week but they aren't married so we don't know if it is going to happen this week but she is progressing very well and has gone to church with us twice now and she accepts all of our invitations, and just is a very humble person that I can tell wants to be with her family forever and know her Savior. It's just convincing her husband to marry that's the problem right now.  It's just the culture down here not to be married because its just a hassle and they think it's not important.

Everything else is fine.  The Spanish is so so.  It's improving but in a really slow rate at least to me.  My President said that this week and next week is apparently very hard on the new missionaries for just some reason in either feeling they aren't improving or just other reasons so I'm getting ready to get hit by that and I just hope I have hope and faith that I can push through and get on the other side where things will start rolling. But time flies already incredibly fast I felt I just wrote yesterday and I only have 2 more weeks and then I possibly might be somewhere else with a new trainer. It's crazy you really do if you work hard lose a sense of time. 
But I enjoy hearing about what is going on even if it is some bad news like our country. 

Haha I like the photo (cartoon you sent) but here in Guatemala it is not the money they don't want to give up its the Coffee! Turns out Guatemala is the capital of the world for Coffee and its apparently really good here. I also heard the chocolate here is amazing to so I'm trying to find that one out.
But Spanish is coming a little.  I never realized how complicated grammar can be especially when it's in a different language and goes completely against what you were taught. I think that's what is getting me right now.

Haha I never realized how good the CCM treats you until now.  'Im grateful to be able to go to the Guatemala CCM I think it helped me a lot and prepared me more than the MTC could have even though the CCM treats you like your babies and they feed you well they give you everything like Ice cream and cookies and even a snack time for everyone and all that.  It's like the nursery of the Mission  which I think is why it's so hard on new missionaries from the beginning.

I'm really happy I was able to get to my actual mission and start learning the language. I love my mission President.  He expects a lot and is very strict but that's because he wants the most we can give and try to be the best we can be. Turns out our mission the Guatemala Central Mission is #1 in all of Central America and South for exact obedience and being trust worthy and all the missionaries doing what they are supposed to. And we are #2 in all of Central America for baptisms and #1 in Guatemala. It goes to show you what we get for trying our hardest and try and follow all of the rules and the blessings that come. My interview was just the regular 3 month personal interview of just seeing how you are and what's up. My district consists of me, my companion and 2 other Elders and 2 hermanas. But our zone is pretty large. And yes I have met quit a good amount of other missionaries from the mission and they all tell me how it's rough from the beginning and that you just sound stupid from the beginning but your able to handle yourself by the third transfer and understand everything.

I think when you realize why you are here and who called you and has made so many promises to you in the scriptures new and old you really start to change and have faith which I find is never enough but enough for me to act which is all we ever really need to do and the rest comes. When I first started I hated contacting because the language is a hindrance but we are here because our objective is Invitar a las personas a venier a Cristo al aydarlas a que reciban evangelio restaurado mediante la fe en Jesucristo y su expiacion, el arrepentimiento, el bautismo, la recepcion del don del Espiritu Santo y el perseverar hasta el fin. I and everyone else on a mission is here to invite all people to receive Jesus Christ's true gospel and be baptized with the true authority given to Joseph Smith by the Apostles of old. Its hard here because many are Catholic or Evangelic but the people that are ready understand and hear. I have been studying the Bible a lot because of that problem with the other religions and them feeling that they are content and they don't need anymore or the fact they may not believe there religion is right but they don't want to change. And I notice a pattern with all the Prophets and Apostles and all the servants of Christ in the Bible and Book of Mormon they all have more bad days then good. And they all go through more hard situations and things than anybody else has to. Now the question is why is that why would people that follow Christ and doing so much good be the ones that get hurt and go through the most hardships. And it's because they can handle it and we have trials to grow and become more. I notice Paul would actually be happy to go out and have to deal with that and he almost died a couple of times and the reason he was happy is because he knew what he would get out of it here and later on after he is dead 


Elder Toma

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