Monday, November 19, 2012

The biggest change in the mission so far! - Email from 19 Nov 2012.

It is official!! My mission has pretty much taken a 180 degree turn, and I think it`s going to be for the better! This week, President Rowley has made an announcement in our mission that will really change things! We had a Zone Meeting on Thursday to make it known, and the Zone Leaders began by asking two questions. The first question was, What type of converts does the church need here in Tumbes? We began listing things like leaders, people that serve, people that are truly converted, full tithe payers, people with a testimony of the Book of Mormon, etc. Then they showed us a scripture that really changed things! Doctrine and Covenants 58:10-12. It talks about first going to the rich, and then moving on to the poor. I guess President is really looking at what we`re doing and what would really help the church to progress in this part of the world. He thinks, as do I, that the church needs more leadership. The church needs more men that are strong in the priesthood and that really have the means to serve other people. Unfortunately, we as missionaries search a lot of the time for the easy baptism. We want to be able to say that we`ve baptised a lot of people. But to what end? President is really showing us that we have a purpose even higher than baptising. As he said, if we baptise the men that will really be able to contribute, the women and children will follow! Inevitably, they will be baptized as well.

When that announcement was made, I think a lot of the elders reacted pretty strongly. It`s a huge difference now! We were reminded once again that we are not allowed to enter homes where there is not an adult male present. Something that honestly has not been done during my time as a missionary. We`ve gone in where they`ve let us, even if it is a mother. Now, we are being told that that`s not ok, and we need to change. I really do feel like the mission is changing a lot. We will no longer have the best numbers. Our numbers are going to fall for a while, but if we really put in the effort, the church will grow and flourish.

So anyway, that`s the biggest news that I`ve got from thiis week! It really has been a lot of fun this week with Elder Huaman. We`re doing well working together, and I really feel like we`re going to have a lot of success. We`ve met a few good families that have the potential to really go far. Because of the changes that President has made, we`ve really been searching for those men that are going to help the church grow! As a result, we`re knocking doors that before we wouldn`t have knocked. The big houses are now sought after, instead of judging the area to be a bit harder. As a result, we found one man who told is just in his doorstep that he wanted a Book of Mormon, and that if we gave him two or three weeks he`d read it all!! I was really impressed by that because normally the people we run into struggle to even read one verse! I feel like things are really going to become a lot more exciting now.

The ward is also doing great! Because of the Stake Conference we had last week, our bishop is really more focused in missionary work. We had a meeting where we were able to make our ward mission plan, and I`m really excited to get it going! We`re now assigning a Book of Mormon to one family in Sacrament Meeting every week! Also, we have a least one activity going on during the week as well, and we`re hoping to have two. I`m excited for all of the changes and am really looking forward to being able to work with the members more. I know it`s going to be great!!

OH!!! Something else happened this week...I got my Christmas package!!! I was literally like a little boy at Christmas, I couldn`t believe how HUGE it was!!! Thank you Mom!! I`ve included a picture as proof of how amazing my Mommy is, and how GINORMOUS the package was!!! Haha, who could ask for a better mom??

Well, I really just don`t know what else to write! This week the sewage came up out of the ground on the way to our Pension. It`s been all over the other streets, but now we had to walk through it three times a day! Oh, also, they have now built another bar! It`s right in front of our Pension! I guess it will only be open on weekends, but Sunday night the music was so loud it felt like the speakers were inside their house!! Haha, I feel bad for the family...I don`t know how they could possibly sleep with all the noise! Then again, we have a club where they hold events just a couple doors from us...I guess when there are graduations this December we`ll have the privelege of listening to spanish hip hop as well! Oh joy! Can`t wait for the sleepless nights...haha, but I guess that`s part of being in Peru. :)

Anyway, I love you all so much! Keep up the letters! I`ve got one in the mail to all the family!

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