Wednesday, March 9, 2016

March 9, 2016

Hey family.  It´s been quite a week.  Super super busy.  
   On Sunday we had a Central America regional conference where Elder Anderson spoke.  It was really good.  There were several seventies that spoke, the young women´s second counselor or something spoke as well.  She was the only one that had her talk translated.  It was just filmed in a room in SLC and broadcast over here.  Elder Anderson did a good job talking in Spanish.  I mean, it´s probably easier to speak spanish when you have a teleprompter telling you what to say but it was good regardless.  You could definitely tell that he knows Portuguese.  Elder Anderson was talking about a trip he made to Africa and a lot of sacrifices that people from Congo had made to go to the temple and how they finally got a temple.  Then he looked at the screen and said, now I know those saints in Nicaragua have been waiting a long time for a temple... And everyone got super excited, thinking he would announce a temple or something.  But he´s just like, you´re doing a great job going to the Honduras temple.  So no temple for us but we got a bit of a scare here.  We brought six people to church this week.  Maria, Maria Del Carmen, Mel, Veronica, Kirby, and Noel.  Maria, as of Monday, had over a week of no smoking so we got her interviewed for her baptism this saturday and she´ll get baptized unless she smokes again.  We´re really excited for her.  But she needs a lot of prayers.  Mel and Veronica are family of Maria as I´ve explained and went to church and are just starting to realize I think that there has always been something missing in their lives and that by living the gospel they can fill the hole in their lives.  Wow that was a very profound sentence.  Maria Del Carmen is a fairly old lady we contacted across the street from the mission leader´s house.  She didn´t go last week because she was puking (I reminded her that I puked last week and still went to church) but after that she felt bad and promised us that she would go even if we had to carry her dead body to the chapel.  So on Sunday she left at 7 AM to get the the chapel (the meeting didn´t start until 10...)  It kind of confused us because we went to take her ourselves and she didn´t answer the door so we thought she was rejecting us.  But she´s super cool. Just pretty sick.  Kirby is doing better than last week.   He had a change of heart and he´s doing better.  Hopefully it´s a lasting change of heart.  Noel is doing great.  He´s going to get baptized this saturday (again, as long as he doesn´t smoke or drink). 
    It´s hard to have two baptisms this week with people that need a lot of Word of Wisdom verification because with changes the secretaries barely touch our areas Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday.  But we´re putting our faith that we´ll be blessed for everything we do to serve the lord, even if it isn´t proselyting.  So please lots of prayers for the baptism this week and the rest of the progressing investigators.  Familia Robleto again didn´t go to church but they had a pretty decent excuse.  Rosemary had been on a list of children that needed to be operated on when a certain surgeon came to nicaragua and on Friday night she was cut from that list and the surgeries were this week.  So they went to the hospitals and did everything they could to get Rosemary back on that list but to no avail.  She didn´t get operated on this week and the clock is definitely ticking.  Also, skilled surgeons qualified in this type of surgery don´t come to Nicaragua often.  So they say they´re putting all their faith in God and doing everything they can to receive His blessings but it´s not true.  They haven´t gone to church in like four weeks, they still aren´t married and she still isn´t too hot on getting baptized here shortly.  So we´ll see what happens with them but please pray for them and especially Rosemary.  

    For changes for me I basically had to make a ton of different orders at a ton of different restaurants for all the happenings on Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday (news arrive on Monday, get trained on Tuesday and Wednesday, old missionaries have a dinner on wednesday and leave on thursday).  So I´ve ordered a ton of Subway, Burger King, Pricesmart Pizza, bought like 70 muffins at pricesmart, Doña Haydee, Comida a la vista.  I´ve had to order flower arrangements, base plates etc.  Just a constant stream of crap to do that you can´t afford to mess up on.  So news from changes...  Elder Weyand (was my DL and materials secretary) had changes and Elder Aitken came into the office.  Elder Nave went up to ZL in Granada.  Elder Merrill got moved to be ZL in Universitaria so he´s my ZL again.  Now Jungers is DL.  I think that´s about all the missionaries you might know that got changed.  

   Oh, I forgot to tell you that on Sunday President and Sister Russell invited all of us secretaries and the APs over to their house for dinner because President had a lot fewer meetings or something due to the area conference.  So Sister Russell made a legit thanksgiving dinner with Turkey, stuffing, potatoes, gravy, cranberry juice.  It was amazing.  Wow.  I think it was kind of their way of saying enjoy this meal before the worst 3 days of your life.  A nice little pep talk before getting the crap beaten out of you.  Thats what changes do to you.  But oh well, it´s basically over.  I just have to wake up at like 3 tomorrow to take the dying missionaries (those who´ve completed their missions) to the airport with my comp. 

  Oh on Sunday I was walking down the street and I looked down and saw something smashed and fuzzy.  So I looked closer and it was an enormous, black and purple tarantula that someone apparently found and chucked out of the house.  That was pretty cool.  

  Sorry mom, I didn´t get the packages yet.  I´m definitely keeping my eye out though, trust me.  I feel back to normal now.  Not sick anymore.  All symptoms of my sickness basically ceased this past Saturday so I've been fine for a while.  Don´t worry about me.  Also, I took another parasite test (on nurses orders) and an H Pylori test (no idea what it actually is)  and both tests came back negative.  So I don´t have parasites and don´t have H Pylori.  But I´d appreciate it if someone could tell me what H pylori actually is or means.  Oh and I haven´t even started my accutane yet because we´re still waiting for final approval from SLC.  

   Well, love you all.  Enjoy golfing dad.  Enjoy feeding the chickens mom.  Good job on the violin Peyton.  Good job on doing crap for the wedding Delaney (and mom I think)  good job at saving hundreds of lives every day Matt.  

Elder Smith

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