Friday, January 27, 2012

55: Independencia 22

Today is a very special day for you all, because we've been able to capture a few photos of "Elder Bailey in the Office." Please realize that these photos you will be viewing are 100% authentic and have not been touched or tinkered with. This is the real deal.
This week for Elder Bailey has been very interesting. Hold on while I take out my little piece of paper.
... ... . .
Okay. I didn't find it.
Let's start with Friday. Friday was a very special day and a memorable moment for Elder Bailey, and not just because he was able to partake of Taco Bell. On Friday, EB had the opportunity to go to San Salvador and attend a special conference meeting for missionaries of the two missions found in El Salvador. It was a very great meeting, featuring Elder Amado from the Seventy, Elder Clayton from the Presidency of the Seventy, the two mission presidents, and all of their wives, of course.
Elder Bailey surely felt the spirit in those wonderful two hours, and received a lot of revelations from his Heavenly Father. Out of all the people who talked, EB says that the one he learned the most from was, of course, his mission president, President Cordón, who is a pure genius. Man. Wow. He's a genius. So it was a busy day for Elder Bailey, as he is still in the office and had to prepare a whole bunch of stuff for the meeting. He was able to see and talk to Elder Parry, one of his friends [his companion] from the MTC. He really enjoyed this meeting. It was a very spiritual meeting, and it was a lot of fun seeing all the missionaries, even though he was running around the whole time. But that wasn't the end of his adventures for the week.
After the meeting, Elder Bailey was able to continue working in his area. He found many positive people.
Sunday, Elder Bailey had a stake conference with Elder James B. Martino of the Seventy. It was there that he was able to set a record in his area for the most investigators in church, where he was able to bring 10 investigators to church.
Well, in his district they were also able to bring the future mayor of Santa Ana and a bunch of other diplomats. All in all, it was a very good meeting. The sister who brought them to the meeting told us a bit about their comments after. One of the diplomats was a pastor, who commented that church was a lot cooler when the people weren't yelling. The mayor, after hearing about eternal marriage, asked for help to find a wife in a political meeting later that day. All in all, it was a success.
Tuesday, Elder Bailey was able to contact one of these diplomats (who, ironically, lived next door to his house). He is going to return with her later.
Also, that Tuesday, Elder Bailey was able to put a date with a girl named Yanira. Because it was a very spiritual experience, we're going to ask EB to tell it personally.
"So my companion and I went to talk to this girl named Yanira, who we've taught 2 times. I talked about baptism, then the Holy Ghost, and gave her the baptismal question. She is a very shy girl, so she kind of squirmed around a bit, and said no. So...well...I just got revelation, and kept going until she said yes. It was an awesome lesson, and the spirit was very strong. It was WAY cool. I am getting a lot better at teaching now. Just think of how good I'm going to get when I can teach all day!
The next day we returned to her house, and she was trying to back down from the date (the 5th). So we talked a bit, and got her to recommit. It was awesome. Then we went to another investigator, named Jonathan. We were able to put a date with him too. Thank goodness, that kid has been hard. They've been very cool, spiritual experiences, and my teaching skills have improved a lot. It is so cool to be able to feel the Holy Ghost testify to what you are saying. I love it. Missionary work is so awesome. Also, I found Benny again, one of my earlier investigators from before I went to Refugio. I brought him to church. I got talking with him a little, and he commented about how he had stopped drinking and smoking because of the Book of Mormon. Wow, is that cool. So we're going to go back tonight to try and put a date with him before I go."
All in all, it's been a really good week for Elder Bailey. On Thursday, he was also able to have a multizone conference with President, where he learned about planning. It was a very good lesson. He had to prepare a powerpoint and some awards and pictures with frames for the people who had baptized families, and it all worked out well. In the office, he has been working hard on making a program in Access to make the retention reports he does a lot easier, and it is working very well. He is very pleased with himself.
He'd like to thank all his family and friends who support him and read his letters. If you made it this far, congratulations. I salute you.

Take care y'all,
Elder Bailey

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

54: Independencia 21

January 18, 2012
Alright. Well family, I'm writing you all one day earlier today because tomorrow we are going to have a special conference with Elder Clayton of the Presidency of the Seventy. So today I am writing you from my seat in my office. We just finished cleaning it all because Elder Nelson (of the Twelve) is going to have a meeting here with all the bishops and stake presidents of the country, and President says he's very likely to come in here to check out the office. So he's going to see MY desk. Woah. I also just finished writing "El Estandarte," our mission newsletter, for this change. It's been a very busy week. We got five new missionaries this week from Mexico (they came 2 weeks late). Busy, busy, busy.
But let's start with P-day, because that's an interesting story.
I decided to finally get my teeth fixed. I've had cavities for a while now, so it was finally time to get them fixed. The good thing is that it only cost me 10 dollars per cavity. The bad is that she told me I actually had eight. Okay, so I had her fill the two worst ones that day. Well, they were my two back molars on the right. So she finished, and it was cool. When I got back to the house, I tried to floss, and as it turns out she got a bit of the filling stuck between my two teeth. Well, I also couldn't wear my retainers. The next day I went to her, and she told me that she could just knick it off. Well, she did that, and also a bit of my tooth. So now I have this huge gap between my two back molars and...what can you do? Anyways, I still have to get my other ones filled, and am not really sure what I want to do about that now.
Sunday I went to church, like always. The president also went to our ward, which kind of stunk because I only had one investigator in sacrament meeting. But I think she'll get baptized, so that's okay. The members are looking a lot more with us, which is pretty sweet. I've been in this area for a really long time. I love them. Not gonna lie.
Monday we had family home evening with Victor Samayoas family and an investigator he brought. He taught us about how to have a family home evening. Kind of weird, but it was still good.
Tuesday we had a Noche de Fortaleza, where we went with the bishop to teach a lesson to some members, and they were supposed to bring investigators. It worked out, they brought one, but she didn't want anything, and yeah....
We've been working a lot with a member named María de Carmen. She's the convert of Elder Alvarado. She's just awesome. We're going to baptize her neighbor. Well, we're always working hard.
I've been working a lot with Access and Excel in the office. I've learned a lot of cool tricks, and have made some pretty sweet stuff.
Anyways, I've got to go now.
Elder Bailey

From Jan 19, 2012

P.S. The pic is me after the dentist. She used a lot of anesthetic.

Friday, January 13, 2012

53: Independencia 20

Hello family!

It's me!

So wow. This has been a busy week.

Here we go. So as you already know, I got called to be district leader of the office, and apparently that also means I'm in charge of the office when we're in the office too. So we've got two new elders in the office right now who don't really know what they're doing, and my life has gotten hectic. Seriously, I don't think I've ever had so much responsibility and stress. I have to make sure that all the problems and projects in the office get done, as well as get good numbers in our areas. It's hectic.

On Saturday I went on interchanges with Elder Alvarado, our new zone leader (he's from Hawaii). Normally we don't do that, but this was an exception because he's been in Independencia before and wanted to contact some of his old investigators. It was a good idea. One of his old investigators is named Erica. She didn't get baptized before because she lived with her "husband" and he didn't want to get married. We tried to contact her, but she wasn't there, so I returned Monday night with Elder Ward, we taught her, and we put a date with her for the 29th. So there's one baptism! I went to church with him (Elder Alvarado) too on Sunday, and all the members remembered him. He is a really good missionary who loves to work. It was kind of cool to do an interchange.

Erica's way cool. She's got one kid and is pregnant with the second, and just wants to get baptized, which works out really well for us.

On Wednesday, I had my first district meeting. It wasn't that great, but it was my first time and I only had about 10 minutes to prepare, so it was all right. Also, I think every single phone rang at least once while we were in that meeting, and the assistants didn't even come until the last 5 minutes. So it didn't really work out.

Well, yesterday I completed one year in the mission. I'm over the hill and running. Teaching, working, learning. It's good. The mission is awesome.

Take care,

Elder Bailey

Friday, January 6, 2012

52: Independencia 19

Okay. So it's been a really busy week. Let's start with Friday.

Friday, after writing, we went to the Lake Coatepeque. We were all pretty exhausted, so it was way good. This time, we actually went to a house of a member who was down next to the shore. We took a whole bunch of pictures and threw the frisbee around a bit. It was a lot of fun. Way pretty. Really, it was just beautiful.

Saturday was also really cool. We got to go to the President's house and have a New Year's dinner. Mmmm. It was the best food I have had since I started my mission. Sister Cordón had been preparing it since Tuesday. It was a huge turkey, pork loins with pineapple, ponche (a food from Guatemala), mashed potatoes, stuffing (with bacon...the best stuffing I have ever had), salad, chocolate cake, and cheesecake. Let's just say it was good. We also had a lot of fun. President's family is awesome.

On Monday we started changes, and my new companion, Elder Ward, came. He's from Washington. A good guy. So basically I've been running around a ton this week doing all the changes (because Elder Christner's not here...he left for Belize, and Elder Ward doesn't really know what he's doing). So it's just been way hectic. I've been doing a lot of new projects too, so I've been very busy here in the office.

Oh but wow, that food was good on Saturday.

So I'm also the District Leader for the office now. It's kind of an interesting position. It's weird being in charge now.

So that's the week, summed up. It's been good, busy, fun. My companion's gone. We got to be really good friends after 4 1/2 months. He was good.

I also got a package a couple days ago. Thank you so much! It was awesome. We're going to eat the Tim Tams tonight for my companion's birthday.

Well, I'm going to send some pics.

Good to hear everything is going well!

Elder Bailey