Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Mon., 3/27/2017 (Yyb Yau) New companion:

Hey everyone, I hope you´re having a good week! We had changes this week so I got my new companion. His name is Elder Castro, and he is from Peru; a little town on the border with Ecuador. He likes playing soccer and is very obedient. Another thing; he likes contacting (the equivalent of tracting, or knocking on doors to find new people). It sounds like we are going to get some stuff done this change. Every 6 weeks at the start of the change, we set goals for everything, including how many people we will teach and baptize. The mission´s goal for each companionship is 3 every 6 weeks. Last change with Elder Baez we had a goal of 4. This change we went up a step to 11. We´ll see how that works out!

Anyways, I'll start from the beginning of the week. Tuesday we had district meeting, and then visited church members for Elder Baez to say goodbye. The branch president came to help us get Elder Baez's stuff to the bus stop. It took a while because he has 6 suitcases worth of stuff! We took a collectivo to Asuncion arriving around 4:30 am Wednesday, and there met up with about 20 missionaries and the office elders. We stopped by the office then I got dropped off in Mariano to wait for my companion and the collectivo back home. I got to talk to a lot of other missionaries that I know, including Elder Tesucun, who went out to Concepcion. I also talked to Elder Brower, my companion from the MTC, but with him it was by telephone, letting him know that he was supposed to be in Asuncion that day to pick up a new missionary and train. He was pretty bummed because he had stayed in Concepcion... but it all worked out because they had him skype his new companion hahaha. Good old Elder Brower. Anyways, we waited a long time, and eventually got on the collectivo. We arrived during the night. Thursday we got Elder Castro settled in and got out to work. He has no experience with bikes hahaha. We had a Noche de Rama, where we had a little lesson, then had some games planned but apparently there was a Paraguay soccer game so that ended up being the activity hahaha. There´s nothing bigger than soccer here. Friday we had a pretty similar day. Saturday, we ended up going 38 or so kilometers to visit a woman who got baptized near Asuncion then moved here. She wants us to baptize 2 or 3 of her kids, so we´re looking forward to working with them. We got a ride from the branch president, but he can´t take us out there much so we will have to go on bikes. More to come in the following weeks hopefully. Sunday we had church. With Elder Baez gone, there were a few vacancies. I now teach for the first hour, we teach the class for the young men second hour, I led the music all 3 hours of church, and both of us gave talks in church. Oh, by the way, we were given notice right before\during church hahaha. Exciting stuff. After church, it was raining pretty hard. We really didn´t want to go out and get soaked, so we went through our area book and called every person who the missionaries have talked to before but that we don´t currently visit. We found a few people that said we could stop by this week, so hopefully we´ll get to meet some new people! Today we are in Pedro Juan Caballero for Pday. Since we are in Pedro Juan, the only place with computers has a problem with photos so I can´t send any this week, sorry! Ill try to send them next week!

This week we have general conference coming up (Final 4 also, go Heels!). General conference is a cool time because there´s a prophet here on the earth just like in the times of the Bible and Book of Mormon and you can watch on your TV (BYUtv) or on the computer(lds.org) in your house! Pretty convenient and easy. It´s a time when we get to learn a lot about a lot of subjects, and it´s all really useful. I encourage you to all watch conference, whether it´s in English, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Guarani(that´s what we´re watching it in), or whatever other language. Go ahead and watch; you´ll get so much out of it. I know it´s important and you can too.

FYI:  In the mission there are about 160 missionaries. I think there are 6 senior missionaries (we don't ever see them), and my zone right now has 14 elders and 4 sisters. My first zone had about 18 elders and 6 sisters. So its a ratio of about 3 or 4 to 1. There are 3 elders and 2 sisters from Paraguay here, as well as one guy in my zone who is half Argentine and doesn't like to speak guarani. There aren't very many Americans; I'd say maybe 40 of 160. In my zone there are 2 (finally!) of us American elders and 1 sister. The rest are all Latinos. A ton of the Latinos are from Peru. We can get the Liahona if we want but we have to go to the office or have someone else pick one up.

Thanks for all your emails and prayers.  Have a good week!

Rohayhu!
(I love y´all!)

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