Monday, August 1, 2011

29: Refugio 8

Hello everyone!

So it’s me again.

This week has been an adventure.  Monday we went shopping, and I was actually able to buy bacon!  It is so good.  This week I’ve been able to cook some good food.  French toast, pizza, bacon, and I have a chocolate chip cookie’s so great.  But I need some more ideas of foods I can cook.  Give me some ideas and I’ll cook it.  I can get the ingredients, but make it simple.  Also, we don’t have an oven, just a stove and a toaster-like thingy.

Tuesday...I really don’t remember what happened, but I’m sure it was good.

Wednesday I got to do interchanges and went with Elder Arbon, our zone leader.  That guy knows a lot of doctrine.  Wow.  He wants to be a seminary teacher, which will be good for him.  Somebody’s got to do it.  It also rained a lot that day (it’s rained a lot every day).  We spent 20 minutes trying to figure out how to cross the river/street to get to the stake center.  Yeah.  It’s pretty cool.

Thursday we had a multi-zone meeting with the president.  It was a pretty awesome meeting.  Our president is so cool.  I love the guy.  Also, he bought every companionship a pizza, donuts, and chocobananos for lunch.  So good.  I kind of miss American food.  After that we got back to our area and it was raining a lot, so I decided to wear those HUGE rain boots that I’ve dragged here.  Well, they’re really ugly, but they work well.  All the guys who worked in the fields wanted my boots, and all the girls laughed at them.  Well, to be honest, I don’t like wearing them, but that day they served pretty well.

After a cool lesson with Raul, an investigator who’s going to get baptized this Saturday, we walked out and realized there was a huge river going down the street.  Well, my companion didn’t want to get his feet wet, so I ended up carrying him on my back through the river to get to the chapel.  Once we got there, we had a noche de rama, and we gave the lesson.  It was on service, and I ended up telling the story about the three pioneer boys who carried their company across the river in the freezing cold.  After, I started relating the story to reality and said, "Now, maybe we don’t have to carry people across rivers now, but—oh wait.  I just did that today.  Yep.  I’m going to heaven."  Yeah. It was pretty dang sweet.

Friday was even more of an adventure.  I had interchanges again, and this time went with Elder Hobbs to Magdalena.  First of all, he shares the house with cuscachapa because his area is really poor and there aren’t any houses that live up to our standards.  They’re all pretty dead.  Magdalena is about an hour from the house, so we had lunch at 11:00 (his cook is amazing) and took off to his area.  I’ll be honest, his area is exactly how I imagined El Salvador.  All green, dirt streets, water flowing through the streets (when it rains), a ton of rain, poor houses, terrible bathrooms--the epitome of El Salvador.  It was a pretty sweet day, and I’m not going to lie, being able to speak English is a lot of fun.  So we taught some pretty powerful lessons.

The last lesson we taught was the coolest.  It was an inactive family with a 16-year-old-girl who had not been baptized.  When we started out, they didn’t want to return to church.  The mother went to another church, and the dad and grandpa were both pretty lazy.  Well, let’s just say that that whole lesson was guided by the spirit.  Word for word—especially the questions.  By the end, they were saying that they wanted to go to church, and the girl wanted to get baptized.  So sweet!

Then, it was 8:30, and we had to head back to the house to get back by 9:30.  So we took off, walking through the pitch black forest.  It was pretty intense.  We seriously could barely see anything.  We kept tripping around on rocks, holes, and puddles.  After about 20 minutes of walking, we were able to hitch a ride back in the back of a pickup truck.  Then it started raining.  Really, really hard.  It was actually cold, and the raindrops actually hurt.  I was soaked to the core.  By this time the water was about a foot deep and the pickup was basically driving through a river.  It was a pretty sweet experience.  We got back to the house and the power was out, so we got to sleep and eat in the dark.  It was such a sweet experience.  For a more detailed explanation, see Elder Bailey’s missionary journal 1.  Ask me about it in a year and a half.  It was pretty tight.  I’ll send a picture that Elder Hobbs took next week (he just got emergency changes and got sent to Atiquizaya because another elder was leaving).
all the bugs are bigger here...even the spiders

So that was an adventure, but it doesn’t beat Saturday.

Saturday we had a baptism for Adonaí Puentes and his daughter, Julisa.  His wife (we had to marry them) was already a member and all of the kids too.  He’s pretty sweet.  Kind of crazy, but cool.  He’s gone to the temple open house three times.  So yeah, the baptism and marriage were way cool.  I gave a pretty sweet talk, and after that sang that one primary baptism song.  The spirit was so strong.  When I baptized him, it felt so cool.  That was really the first time that I’ve really felt the spirit during a baptism.  The other times it was just kind of like... "Oh, you’re baptized now," but with him it was way cool.  After that, we also got to eat cake, which is always fun.  That was a really happy day.  We were both so filled with the spirit.

After the baptism, we went to look up a reference that came from the president of the east side.  Both of them had gone to the temple open house, and the husband more than once.  It was a small family: Adonaí and Jaquelin Reyes and their little like 2-year-old kid.  They are the most positive people I’ve ever had.  They are so amazing.  We taught them Lessson 1 and they committed to read the Book of Mormon.  So positive.  It was absolutely amazing, a miracle that we found them.

Sunday, in the tarde [afternoon], we went back to teach them, and they had read and prayed.  We started out and they both told us that they knew that the Church was true, and when I asked them if they wanted to get baptized, they both said yes.  It is so awesome.  We put a dead date (a dead date is when we commit them to a date, but they haven’t gone to church yet) for the 27th of August.  It’s pretty sweet.  I’m way excited for them.

So my companion is good.  The first week it wasn’t the best because we had to adjust to each other, but it’s getting much better.  He’s pretty chill.  He does like to be in charge totally, and since he’s the senior companion, I had to give it to him, even though I was basically senior companion the last change.  He likes to command, but I think that after a couple weeks of that, he’ll start listening to me and trying out my ideas, but until then, I’ll just learn from him.  I have a lot to learn from him because he is good.

Well, that’s some of the stories from this week.  It was definitely eventful.  Wow.  So cool.  Hope all is well back home, praying for you all, so be good.  Thanks for all you’ve done for me, and remember the Church is true.

Elder Bailey

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