Hi Dad, Kelly, Mom! Familia! Friends! Loved ones!
I miss you all. I pray every day for you. I can feel your prayers in
return. The work goes forward. I hope my email two weeks ago did not
frighten you pertaining to my health. I am doing much better. I have
finished my medications that the doctors have given me and I am on the
mend. Mom, please still send me those probiotics and antiacid pills. I
need them a lot to help me continue to regulate my food. Every meal we
eat has rice, menestra (fried beans) and a type of meat, so the food
is rather greasy. But it is very delicious. I tell myself the health
problems are only a side-effect to having a cultural experience.
My language is improving a lot to with the natives with the help of
Hermana Reyes. The fact that she only speaks Spanish forces me to use
all my knowledge to communicate with her. Sometimes because of the
language barriers, we don´t communicate the best, but when we fight,
everything gets cleared up. Companionships are teaching me a lot about
patience and charity towards others, and always having a companion is
good marriage preparation. Haha.
We have two new sisters who are living with us. Hna. Meono and Hna.
Needham. In fact, Hna. Meono entered the MTC with me on October 26.
They are both from Utah. I like having other English speakers in the
house, but I them remember that Hna. Reyes feels left out, so I only
speak in Spanish when she is around. I like to have a good laugh in
English every now and then, though.
Update on the missionary work: we have a baptism this week! His name
is Lorenzo Vince. He is the nephew of a recent convert. Plus, we hope
Katarine, the daughter of Teresa can get baptized as well. There are a
few complications, too much to explain here, but I will let you know
what happens next week. Also, Karen Preciado did not end up getting
baptized on January 7. We had to drop her, which means we had to stop
teaching her and visiting her. It is sad when we have to do this with
our investigators, but if they are not progressing or doing their part
to join the church, we cannot do much more for them. Sometimes it is
frustrating and sad that we do everything we can for them to find joy
in their life, and they are so stuck on the world that they don´t want
to change. But God has given us our agency to exercise. I just
remember how patient Heavenly Father is with me. We finally got a
baptismal date from Christina Carrascal, a 17-year-old whose Mom is a
less active for 15 years. She is an incredible youth. She is very
studious of the Book of Mormon and has a strong testimony. She will be
getting baptized on February 11. Yay! Plus, we started teaching the
Manilla family. They will not accept a baptismal date until they
¨receive their answer that the church is true. Thus I pray they do
their part to read the Book of Mormon and pray by tomorrow when we go
to visit them. Cross your fingers and pray hard. Fast if you can. That
is the most powerful tool that can bring about change for our
Still haven´t gone to the temple yet in Guayaquil, but I ask the
mission president every week. Patience.
We were in a training meeting this morning and talked about how all
the gringos or North Americans are having health problems because of
the food they eat. I was grateful I was not the only one. It put my
problems in perspective. Now I don´t complain at all because some have
it a lot worse. I am starting now to put my life in order and watch
what I eat. It all starts with me.
If you could, please gather some simple recipes to send to me next
week. I am learning how to cook from my companion, but my knowledge is
limited. I can´t just go to the internet now and look up how to boil
Dad, I am going to purchase some really nice scripture covers, real
leather with Christ´s pictures engraved on them, but they are going to
cost 70 dollars. Can you make sure the money is in my account?
That is all I have for now. I am working on writing you all this week
with personal letters.
I love you. God bless you. I hope you find strength and a testimony
building message in this email. Please find people to give references
to the missionaries. It makes a world of difference.
Love you all,
P.S. I print out your emails every week, but cannot reply to them
until the following week.