Sunday, June 28, 2015

Villa Elisa: May 1, 2000

To my family:

Hi!  Um… now what.  Uh… well, this week hasn't been all that great.  A lot of walking and talking, but not a lot of charlas [tr: discussions] given.  There was this one pretty cool thing that happened, but I'll talk about that in due time.  There's other stuff to talk about first.

Last Monday, the 24th.  I passed off charla one to Elder Handy.  This entails memorizing it and reciting it to him.  Other than that, Monday was pretty blah.

Tuesday was okay.  We had zone meeting, which was just sort of there.  Nothing spectacular to talk about.  Later that afternoon, we visited a lot of our investigators, with really nothing to show for it.  We did give one charla one to a lady and her daughter.  Both agreed to read and pray.

The cool part happened Wednesday.  We went on splits with the zone leaders.  This was originally a tough thing for me because I didn't know my way around very well.  Elder Handy told me he would show me on the map.  We had a map this whole time and he never told me.  I'd been lost for three weeks, and we had a map!  (Yeah, I'm a little bitter about that).  Anyway, I was able to guide Elder Kump around in the end.  We had no less than seventeen charla cortas [tr: short discussions], three of which I gave.  For comparison, Elder Handy and I have had maybe twelve for the other six days of the week, none of which I gave.  Anyway, we had three charla ones result from the charla cortas.  Unfortunately, this day affirmed my fears about Elder Handy being flojo [tr: lazy].

Thursday was not nice at all.  We didn't do hardy anything.  We were hosed out of three appointments that Elder Kump and I made.  That wasn't the worst part.  We went to talk to Jorgelina, and she told us that her husband was getting upset with her because she wasn't helping him do whatever it was he was doing.  We were told not to return.  This from the coolest investigator yet!  But, there's nothing we can do.  We left a Family: a Proclamation to the World pamphlet, and said our goodbyes.  If I wasn't sure before, I am certain now.  Satan does not like this work.  Jerk.

Let's see.  On Friday, we were hosed by five people.  Joy of joys.  We gave charla two to that lady and her daughter (Magdelena and Luisa).  Both accepted baptism.  That was good, of course.  Highlight of the day, obviously.

Saturday wasn't too bad.  We had a charla one with a snake (a girl about our age who tries to flirt with us).  She was so bad that we didn't set a second appointment.  She told me that I talk like a little angel.  Blarg.  If she goes to church, then we'll talk.  That night we had an awesome charla with Carmen, a lady who might as well be a member for her beliefs.  She recognized the hypocrisy in the leaders of other churches, she doesn't smoke or drink, and reads the Bible.  In fact, she was able to recite John 3:16.  Impressive.  She wasn't able to go to church this week (her idea; we never invited her), because her daughter in Buenos Aires was going to call Sunday some time, but she said that she'll definitely go next week.

Sunday was tough.  None of our investigators came to church; we had four who said "I'll be there, no matter what."  Plus, it seemed like no one was home.  We reviewed charla one with a guy, and that's all we did.

Tough week.  Going on splits with Elder Kump was the best part of the week.  It showed me why we weren't having any success to speak of.  I still haven't participated in a baptism.  It really opened my eyes.  I discovered, when I looked deep inside myself, that I don't love Elder Handy.  I know that I should, but I don't.  I try my hardest, but I just can't do it.  I've been praying my heart out these past few days to overcome this problem.  I can't do it alone.  I can't find an aspect of him to love.

For an example: last night, we were at a house of an investigator family who was slipping away.  Instead of offering to help them, he reads scriptures that aren't exactly nice.  I asked him if slamming the investigators will really do any good.  He said, and I quote, "No, but I want to do it anyway."  Plus he hasn't helped me learn anything.  In a month, we've done a total of an hour and a half of comp study [ed: companionship study.  Missionary companionships were supposed to study together for at least an hour every day.]  It's really difficult.  I haven't learned anything new since I got here, except for a little bit of stuff that I did on my own, but, once again, I can't do it alone.  This is not a good thought, but I think it's a blessing to both me and the people of Paraguay that Elder Handy leaves next month.  I feel really bad about this, but it's really how I feel.

As I said earlier, this has been a tough week for me.  I know this work is the Lord's and I'm doing his will by serving this mission in Paraguay, so I'm not getting discouraged at all.  I'm here to learn and grow, and, in order to overcome this problem I have with Elder Handy, I will have to.  Don't worry about me, though.  I'll be fine.  I've got divine support and help.

I love you all!


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