It's been a little bit of a slow week, but that's okay. We've just had a hard time getting a hold of people to teach them, but it happens sometimes.
Pioneer Day was this week! Since it's not a holiday in California, the Vista Stake had its own celebration in the stake center parking lot, the same building we go to church in. They had lots of booths that you could do things in, like making ropes, candles, drinking homemade rootbeer, eating all kinds of berry and peach cobbler, churning butter, pulling little kids in handcarts, a couple guitar bands singing old music, a doll-making booth, and even a 1/3-size replica of the Nauvoo Temple that the Spanish ward made. It was really neat! Our mission president and his wife came as well. We had a couple of investigators go.
We had to say goodbye to West last night. He is getting deployed on Thursday, a little sooner than we thought. It was hard for all of us, since we've all become good friends. We gave him a military-sized pack of all the scriptures, which he was very thankful for. He plans to read them a lot. It's a shame we ran out of time to baptize him before he left, but I am sure he will join the Church when he gets back in a year. We will continue meeting with Ceyda. By the way, she is a really, really good cook. They fed us dinner last night. We took pictures and exchanged emails and such. Hopefully I'll get to talk to him again sometime.
Speaking of farewells, Elder Fackrell is getting transferred today. He came in with me and we've only been here for 3 months. President Cook asked me to train again, so I will get a greenie at transfers tonight. This will be my 3rd time training. There will now be 2 greenies in our ward! Hopefully he can break the streak and have a last name that's easy to say the first time. I have been praying a lot, asking for help as I train again. It's a big task and there is a lot of trust being placed in me, so I will need to do a good job! I'm sure it will be great again.
My birthday is on Sunday. I'll be 20 years old. That's pretty crazy. Hump day is next week. Boy, life is speeding up quick. I don't have a long time left on my mission so I'm trying to make the best of it. It's still a year, but seeing how fast this past year went by, I don't want to waste a minute. It's been really great so far being out here. I wouldn't trade it for anything. I miss family, friends, hobbies and whatnot, but the compensation of preaching the Gospel and helping people change their lives is pretty neat. I hope all of you are being missionaries in your own capacities. Sure we won't baptize all of our friends or even bring them to church every week, but just living the commandments and being an example goes a long, long way. This work is definitely real, and the Church is definitely true, and it's the best news in the world.
I hope all of you have a great week. I love you all very much.
It's been a really short week, without a lot of action. I was out Wednesday afternoon, then Thursday afternoon through Sunday night down with being sick. It was probably strep throat or tonsilitis. I had super super super sore throat the whole time (it's still quite sore) with a bunch of white dots in the back of my throat. I had waves of fevers, usually around 102, lots of dizziness, barfing, toileting, and headaching. Needless to say, it was a pretty dumb week. I got sick of laying down so we went out and working yesterday. It was tough, but a lot better than laying inside! Dinner appointments were embarrassing because I couldn't eat more than about half a fist-size amount of food, plus some water. Then I would proceed to cough the rest of the dinner hour. Those were the nights we didn't cancel dinner. Being sick as a missionary isn't as fun as being sick at home! Joe's probably making fun of me now because I'm sickly!
West and Ceyda did get back from their vacation finally! They were too late for church, but it was almost a good thing because the Gospel Essentials lesson was on exaltation, and there was deep doctrine mixed with false doctrine for an hour. If they'd heard it, they probably wouldn't have come back to church, so it was probably a good thing they missed! West told us they had missed church a lot and couldn't wait to come next week. I forgot how cool he is!
We had more talk with the Assistants this week and discovered that Fonzie is actually in the 10th ward (Which is the APs ward. We're in the 3rd ward). So we're going to have to pass him back to the 10th ward elders again. We did this once already, so Fonzie has had one lesson from them and has been to their ward once. We told Fonzie we'd have to do it again, and he told me he and Ruby really, really did not like that ward. He said if they had to go to that ward, they would just not go to church at all. He also told us he didn't like those missionaries either, and they were really pushy. This is going to be an interesting time telling the APs all of this!
That's really all for this week. I hope you are all doing well. Love you all
It's finally been a better week. We've had several weeks of frustration, lots of opposition and rejection, and lots of fatigue. We had a break this week, thankfully. We have 2 new investigators, one of which has a baptism date.
The one with a baptism date is Fonzi. Fonzi was taught all the missionary lessons in Del Mar Stake but he had to move up here for work. We're going through all the lessons again (he's a little rusty) and he has a baptism date for Aug 6. His girlfriend's name (she's a member) is Punefuolemotu . Thankfully, she goes by Ruby. They have 2 kids, Isaiah (1) and Roman (3). Isaiah is the loudest one-year-old I've ever heard, which is saying a lot. They're a lot of fun though.
We also picked up Ottilia as an investigator. She is a hispanic lady in her 50s. She grew up Catholic, but later left the church because she got divorced from her husband (a no-no in the Catholic church), who was really cruel to her. She was remarried to another man, and they loved each other very much, but he passed away from cancer a year ago. She has been going through a hard time, especially sorting through all of his things, but she really enjoys our visits and is eager to learn about the church so far.
West and Ceyda get back from vacation this Saturday. We're going to do all we can to squeeze a baptism in before he deploys. The MREs they gave us are really yummy.
We were walking around a small part of our area last night, past a place called Boomers (it's like Trafalga in Utah), and there was a guy eating a sandwich sitting on a power box. We said hello, and then we got in a good conversation. He had some cousins that were LDS and he really liked the Church and wanted to come on Sunday and learn more. We gave him a copy of the Book of Mormon and he was very excited to read it. His name is Daniel . We will try to see him again on Friday.
That's about all for this week. It's cooled down a little bit, which is always nice. Sunscreen is nice because it prevents sunburns, but it makes us sweat a LOT more in this high humidity. I've never sweat so much in my life. Good grief!
It's been a really long, really tough, and really frustrating week, so there's not a lot to write about.
Almost every appointment we had this week cancelled, so we spent the vast majority of our days walkin' talkin' and knockin'. It happens, so I'm not worried about, but it's just not as fun as having lots of teaching in a week.
Last Tuesday night West and Ceyda gave us a giant handful of MREs. They are really cool, and pretty yummy. Some people don't like them, but I think they're pretty good. They also let us borrow their tennis stuff so we could play in the morning while they're gone to Washington and Florida.
In church on Sunday, there were a lot of people bearing testimony about how our country is the greatest in the history of the world and that our military has God behind them, and how our leaders are inspired. Almost no one mentioned Christ until one of the stake presidency members got up and told people to bear their testimonies about Christ and the Gospel. Then one of the people who came up later mentioned in their testimony that Americans eat more hot dogs on the 4th of July than any other day of the year. Then Elder Barlow and Elder Snedaker got up and finished the meeting off with some real testimonies. In the closing prayer was mentioned "..and please help the political leaders of our nation make better decisions...". It took all Elder Fackrell and myself could to not burst out laughing in the middle of the prayer. Needless to say, it was an interesting sacrament meeting.