Wednesday, February 3, 2016

February 3, 2016

Hello everyone!

Sounds like you all had a great time in Vegas!!  It must be nice being in such warm weather.  ha.  ha.

So we had a great week.  The highlight of the week was definitely Saturday and Sunday.
Monica is our investigator that was super ready and prepared to be baptized but we needed to get a divorce from her previous marriage and then get them married first.  And it is NOT easy to get people divorced in Nicaragua.  Luckily we worked with a really cool lawyer who was baptized recently that helped us a ton.  We got to the point that all we needed to finalize the divorce was the signature of the husband but nobody had an address for him.  Luckily we had an address of his grandma so we tracked her down but she doesn't exactly love Mormons and she wouldn't tell us where he lives but we found some of his friends who gave us his address.  So we go to where he was living but he was at work and wouldn't get home until like midnight.  And this was on Saturday so Monica´s baptism couldn't happen on Saturday.  But this super awesome lawyer went to the house of this guy on Saturday at like midnight and found him and got the signature to finalize the divorce.  So we got a phone call from the lawyer on Saturday night at like 12:30 and he´s like, can we have a marriage and baptism tomorrow before church?  And we were like, Heck ya we can.  So we called Monica and her partner Kirby and told them to be at the church at 6:30 in the morning to get married and baptized.  We lent Kirby clothes because he didn't have anything nice to wear.  So Saturday morning we had the marriage first in front of the font and right after baptized Monica.  It was actually a really cool experience.  We talked with Kirby after church on Sunday and he wants to get baptized as well but he´s still got some challenges we´re working with him on.  I imagine we´ll be able to get him baptized this month with a little help from the lord.  It´s cool because Monica is an amazing support for him and it´s a family that honestly wants to change and follow Christ.  

  Also Sonia got baptized on Saturday and confirmed on Sunday without any sort of problem.  She loves primary and will go into Young Women's soon.  Mom to answer your question, I have no idea how many are in primary in the ward but I´ll check for you.  Sonia´s mom Urania is really cool but she won´t be able to get baptized until she gets married and her partner has no desire to get married so some prayers to soften his heart would be greatly appreciated. 

  Familia Robleto, the family of four we´re teaching, didn't come to church this week which was very disappointing.  But I think they felt pretty bad about it and say they´ll come this week.  It´s kind of hard to believe them because they haven´t come for the last two weeks but I've got faith that they´ll come.  The dad Javier is really cool and sincerely wants to find out if the church is true.  He has a lot of doubts about the Book of Mormon but he understands that reading it, pondering it, and praying about it are the keys to receiving an answer that it´s true.  He´s completely ready to follow an answer he receives so that´s a very faithful first step.  It´s definitely a seed of faith, now he just needs to nourish it...  The rest of his family is cool as well.  His 8 year old daughter Celeste is like the little engine of the family.  She always does her homework and encourages her family to remember to read what we've left.  The baby I asked you to pray for has a heart problem that will require open heart surgery eventually but she got something like laryngitis that she was pretty weak to be able to handle.  But they say she´s getting better.  

   So ya every day I´m learning more and more things that I´m responsible to do here like for example paying the utility bills for about half of the houses in the mission, making sure the proper food gets to all mission meetings, balancing every account the mission uses, sending people the necessary money on their mission cards, handling insurance claims, overseeing all the housing in the mission and dealing with all the problems the home-owners give the missionaries.  For this change I have Elder Beals to help me and teach me everything but next change he´ll go home and I´ll be on my own which honestly scares me to death.  But I´m figuring everything out quickly and I know the Lord will help me.  I´m just going to be super super super super super super busy for my time here.  The goal is to be able to leave the office by 3 everyday to go out and proselyte but often there are meetings or other things that come up that make that hard.  For example yesterday was leadership counsel at president´s house and I had to get donuts and juice to all the ZLs and Sister training leaders at the chapel before hand, pay the bus driver and send them off to the mission home for the meeting, go to Burger King and pick up the order of 37 whoppers I made the day before and deliver it to the mission home before they had their lunch break.  And I verified with Burger King twice that morning to make sure they were working on the order and they said yes, and we went to pick it up at 11:30 and they only had the burgers done and hadn't started on the fries or drinks.  So ya there´s lots of logistical stuff like that to do which takes valuable office time away from doing the actual financial stuff.  

   But I feel extremely blessed.   I´m in a blessed area with a great ward.  I love Elder Jungers (pronounced Yuhn - gers), he´s a hard worker and a great missionary.  The time here is going to go by very fast because I´ll be so busy all the time.  It´s weird that I´ll complete six months on the mission this Friday.  Time goes super fast and super slow somehow.  It just kind of goes.

  Congrats Matt on graduating from the police academy and blessing Myles.  I´m not sure which uniform looked sharper, my baby blessing clothes on Myles or Matt´s uniform.  Haha I was a bit surprised to see dad in a suit in that pic.  I guess you´re all used to that by now.

Well, have a great week!!  I love you and always pray for you!!  The church is true!!

Elder Smith

Monica after her wedding and before her baptism
Elder Jungers, Sonia and Family, Cody

Carne Asada

PriceSmart is the best!  American food - yum!

Cody's new favorite - PriceSmart

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