Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Fun Stuff in Paraguay Once Again

Mon., 3/21/2017 (Yby Yau)

We have had another busy week here in Yby yau/Pedro Juan Caballero! Monday to finish off the day we were going to make cookies with the cookie mix Hermana gave us for our house. We actually don't have a cookie sheet so we just made cookie cake instead but it was really good to have some American food. hahaha. Tuesday we left early for Pedro Juan for district meeting. After the meeting, it was one of the hermanas birthday, so we had a little cake and ice cream. I then started a division with Elder Torres in Pedro Juan, which lasted til Thursday night. The members love the elders, so when we passed by a couple of the members' houses they all had a ton of food for us. We finished off the day in a noche de rama (activity for everyone at the church), which ended up being... you guessed it... soccer! Hahaha every activity turns up being soccer here. It was a lot of fun, as they have a lot of little kids and playing soccer with 5 year olds is pretty fun. Thursday I learned how Noah felt when God sent the rains because let me tell you, it rained buckets. And when I say buckets, I mean the Carolina Tar Heels in march kind of buckets. WE went out to work nevertheless, and got a little wet. I'll send the photos I can (there was one point in the day where all the water was above our knees but we didn't risk losing a camera so we had to wait til it subsided for the photos). It was pretty crazy. We then walked a few miles to the other side of Pedro Juan to help a companionship of sisters move to a different house. Their old house was pretty nasty but the new one is great. Elder Torres and I took a colectivo home late that night, as the moving took a lot longer than expected (we also may or not have gotten lost while walking to the sisters' house hahaha). Friday Elder Baez and I, among other things, cleaned the baptismal font(tub), because we had 2 baptisms planned for Saturday. The next day we went up to where our investigator family, Fm Benitez, lived--with the zone leaders--for the baptismal interviews of Cristian and Junior. We got some stuff ready and baked a cake, then had the baptism. Cristian and Junior were super excited for their baptisms. I really don't understand anything in our lessons (because they are in Guarani), but I can always tell when people have the desire to follow Jesus Christ, and when the spirit is there. We felt the spirit so strongly during their baptismal service. Yesterday we didn't get too much done, but (for the first time ever, I think) had branch council, which is really for all the leaders of all the organizations and everything but half the people came, including half of Fm Benitez. It was good to get the insight of everyone on what the people need! Today for Pday we stayed in our area and Elders Hernandez and Torres came to climb Cerro Memby. I wasn't feeling good so Elder Torres and I stayed back, but I'm doing better now. This week I will receive a new companion, as Elder Baez's time has come, but I won't know until Wednesday, so next week I'll be able to write it! That's all from the week!

One thing I wanted to note came up in my conversation with a friend (from the MTC) serving in Uruguay right now is how missions really aren't about the numbers. Everyone before my mission said I would be able to help hundreds of people get baptised, I'd be able to tech 50 lessons a week, and so on. That's not really how it is in the mission field. It can be pretty hard sometimes, but the only number we need to focus on is how much effort we give. That effort should be 100% as much as possible. It works the same way in life. If you really want to be better, if you really want to read some scriptures every day, if you really want to get good grades in school, or whatever other situation, you will only get it after you try and after you put in work. In 2 Nephi 25:23 it says that we are saved after all we can do. After ALL WE CAN DO. My challenge this week is think about one thing you can do better this week to do all you can do to be better, and do it. Thank you all for your emails and prayers! It's really awesome to get emails from family (and friends too if anyone has time); I only skim through them during computer time but I read all the emails a few times throughout the week, and its great to get encouragement. Since some of y'all were wondering, I am allowed to receive and view photos sent in emails! Have a great week everyone! I love y'all!

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1 the spoils of a clean house
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2 jersey swap; I had found a discounted official Paraguay jersey and he had an official Cerro PorteƱo jersey(his favorite club here) and as companions we have to swap something
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3 Hermana Alexander's birthday party
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4 While waiting to take out our money, I realized I was with 4 Peruvians. Of 14 Elders in our zone, there are 5 from Peru hahaha
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5 Waiting on the other Elders, they ended up waiting on me hahah
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6 Pedro Juan Caballero sunset
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7 Noche de Rama and the ball goes up on the roof... don't worry its 100% safe
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8 We helped Hermana Gonzales and Hna Alexander move in, with this Hermano's truck and ElderSalazar, Elder Belez, Elder Torres and I
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9 We got a bit wet and a bit dirty. Turns out there was mold covering everything from the Hermanas' house hahaha
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10 Nothing like good ole Ramen until Elder Torres spilled everywhere hahaha
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11 How they wash clothes in Peru I guess
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12 Elder Torres washing his clothes
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13 Our investigators' dueno had a tractor
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14 Bailing out the font before cleaning
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15 Clean as a whistle
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16 Baptism! Me, Junior, Cristian, and Elder Baez
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17 With the whole family
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18 Cristian and Elder Baez
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19 Junior and I
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20 I have a couple old pictures that Elder Torres sent me today. Our district
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21 with one of the zone leaders too
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22 our division was a bit wet
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23 or should I say really wet
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24 The water was a little deep. It was at this level earlier before we had the camera out, so I recreated how deep it was
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25 All of the streets
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26 Elder Torres was too scared to cross. The water was too high for motorcycles and cars to go anywhere, and Elder Torres was having trouble crossing streets
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27 Apparently this weather is normal in April
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28 It was pretty strong
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29 waiting on E Torres
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30 Shelter finally... after the rain was over. All of these pictures were about an hour after the rain
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31 soaked
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32 Off to help the Hermanas move
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33 PJC moving crew
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34 Lunch as a district ft. Termites in the background
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35 Lunch. Elder Baez has worn his new Paraguay jersey every second possible
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36 A picture from a Pday lunch from my second week in Yby yau/Pedro Juan Caballero.

 That's all!

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