Well, I feel like a very big, thick chapter of my life has just come to a close. Tomorrow I say goodbye to Negritos! I found out this morning for sure that I am going to be transferred. I really have a lot of mixed feelings about it, which actually suprises me a little. I´ve been through quite a bit of struggles here, especially with the members. I´ve had to learn how to work with people that I just don´t mix well with. Now, after I´ve fought and battled for six months, I am going to miss them, a lot.
It´s funny how just as I figure out how to work with them, how to love them, I´m getting changed. I think Heavenly Father had that planned for me here! I´m going to miss Hermano Juan Medina saluting me every time I see him, calling me his general. I´ll miss the little tangents that Hermano Policarpio goes off on all the time...and many more people! This town really is where I was born as a missionary! I sure have grown and changed a lot here in this short time, and I´ve seen my share of growth as well. I hope that they continue to grow!
So...GREAT NEWS! Pedro and Edy Alama came to church this Sunday! We haven´t talked to them in about two weeks because they just weren´t progressing and we wasted time with them. Well, they just came to church on their own! They only came for the first hour, but I was super grateful for that. Elder Ramirez has also told me that he had a dream that he baptized their whole family...I really believe that´s going to happen. They´re ready. I hope Elder Ramirez will follow up with them, and I know he´s going to be a great leader here in Negritos.
Also, we had a less active, Joel Zapata, come to church for the second Sunday in a row! He really is a great friend to me. When I first got here he was one of the few that took the time to talk to me, even though my Spanish was pretty horrible. I left a tie and shirt for him because he didn´t have one, and this Sunday he came with his non member girlfriend that he´s living with. We also visited them afterwards and we may have a chance with Roxanna as well! I really hope so, because he could also be a great strength to this branch here in Negritos.
As far as our work here this week, it kinda went slow. On Thursday Elder Ramirez and I were suprised by a phone call! Our ZL´s called and said we had to be in Talara at 11, no questions. Well, when we got there we were the only ones. Then, President Chipman just walks in! It was really a shock, and I was really happy to see him. Whenever I see him I just feel happier and calm at the same time. We ended up meeting with two other campanions and learning about how to make companion study more effective. I learned a lot that I´m hoping to be able to apply in the future. He really is an amazing president, and I´m going to miss him when he leaves in this next change.
OH! Other super good news, the investigator of Elder Smith and Elder Yupa, Rommell, that was having drinking problems is back! They visited him on Saturday and he was able to have a big change of heart! He said he really wants to be baptized still, and even came to church on Sunday! He seemed pretty changed, for the better! Before he was argumentative with the points of doctrine, but in our class he just seemed really receptive. Also, before he wasn´t much to just talk socially, but after church we were sitting together, and I got him talking about basketball, soccer, and just different small talk. It was like night and day. I can see in his character that the Atonement really is taking effect in his life. He still has a long way to go, and is still overcoming addictions, but I really saw a big spark of hope this Sunday. I hope to hear of his baptism in the future.
As far as other things...I feel great! I´m doing great! I´m learning lots! Haha, and I´m running out of things to say...this week just a bunch of little things happened that I can´t really remember.
Random thing...ran into a guy who does apholestry! He was redoing a couch in his living room and it made me think of you, Mom! It´s really kinda random and rare to see someone that does that kind of work here. He lives in just this kind of hut thing, but inside he´s halfway through a job that looks like it belongs in a mansion. It´s truly incredible how he can make something so nice in such a dirty city.
Well, unfortunately my time is running out and so are my ideas to write! I don´t know why, but I just don´t have that much desire to write what´s going on! Tonight we´re going to have a big FHE for Elder Smith´s birthday, which is today, and my going away. Should be interesting! Hope I don´t cry, I really have fallen in love with the people here...
Love you all! Thank you so much for all of your support and prayers! I´ll let you know all about my new area and zone next week! It feels like I´m leaving for another mission all over again...
Con mucho amor,Elder Schofield