Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Week 34 - Miracles happen in El Milagro!

Buenos Dias!

This was another amazing week here in El Milagro. This week we have had some pretty amazing experiences with an investigator named Diana Loyaga. She is 24 years old and is a very active member of an evangelical church in Trujillo where she is the equivalent of a primary teacher and was baptized about a year ago. Her boyfriend is a strong member of her church and she is quite comfortable where she is right now. Well although she is comfortable where she is right now, one day when we came knocking at her door looking for her older sister Ruth, who was not home, she decided to let us in anyway and listen to what we have to say. She from the start has been very energetic and very active in her learning process. Although at the start there were some very respectful disagreements about doctrinal points she was very excited to invite us back. Well after her first lesson she had her experience which I shared a couple of weeks ago about finding the Book of Mormon in her house, and well she just continues to have experience after experience. This week while joking with a friend on two separate occasions she said "if I see a Mormon I know this is true" , once while scrolling through Facebook and another while walking to work, and of course immediately finishing the word Mormon she sees missionaries. She has had so many answers to her prayers and signs that at this point she is just asking for something a little simpler. This past week we went to visit her on Saturday, and she had talked with her pastor who has given her the advise to not allow us to visit and to especially not pray to know if the things we share are true. Well we kindly explained how prayer is just a conversation with our Heavenly Father and that he will never lead her down the wrong path. With tears in her eyes she expressed how she is scared because she knows what we teach is true and she knows that we are authorized representatives of Christ. She is scared because she knows now she has to make the changes that from the beginning she had promised to be willing to make. Well to make things even better yesterday we gave her a tour of the chapel here in Milagro. We did not even make it past the Sacrament room before her eyes started welling up with tears. With her heart practically beating out of her chest she expressed how she had dreamed the night before that she was in the chapel dancing for joy although really she had never before entered. She is so ready and knows that what we share about Christ and his church is true and now she just has to begin to take the difficult steps to change her life. To make it even better she shared with us that the night before we visited her for the first time she had been praying for God to put something in her path that would help her change her life for the better and that she was willing to do whatever it takes to make that change happen. Well I think it is a little hard to have more obvious answers to one's prayers then Diana has had these past 3 weeks. She has a lot of opposition to begin to make these changes in her life, but when we find the truth we will always have Christ by our side when we try to follow it. I just pray that she is able to stand up against the opposition she is going to find with some of her friends and she can continue down on this path that she has started to find the truth that will bless her life eternally. 

Well on a slightly less spiritual note this week I decided to shave my head because I was tired of having bad haircuts. I was thinking maybe it will help to start from scratch. Well I officially feel like I am 13 all over again hahahaha. In addition this week to celebrate Elder Maddock's and my birthdays we as a district all went to Chili's and ate some oh so missed "mexican food". Some other happenings this week include a new kitten that is continually trying to enter our room at all hours of the day. He has been given the name Elder Vassito. We are hoping he might soon help us with our mouse friend Remy as well. We also were able to visit the temple this week with our zone which is always an amazing experience. 
Well this was an amazing week in El Milagro and we have some really exciting things coming up here in the near future. 
Elder Vassau

p.s. Happiest of birthdays to my dearest brother Max Vassau who is officially turning 13 this year. WOW as of tomorrow our favorite little Max will be a big time teenager.

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Week 33 - Brando Baptism!!!

Buenos Dias!

Yet another awesome week here in El Milagro. This week we had the baptism of our best bud and 14 year old neighbor, Brando Gallardo.  He is the cousin of our pensionista's kids and we met him a little over a month ago. He honestly wanted to get baptized after only 2 weeks but because of a few complications with him possibly moving away we had to post pone things until this weekend. He is so awesome and is going to grow up to be a great missionary one day. To make the service even better we invited our other neighbor, 16 year old Eduardo Castillo to perform the baptism and help out his new friend Brando.

It is really so much fun working with the young men here in El Milagro. It is not a huge group of boys who are active in the church but it so rewarding helping out the young men because not only can I see myself in them (I was there age not too long ago) but I also know how much the gospel can change their lives. I know how having fun activities always helped me while I was in young men’s so recently we have been working to try and have some fun activities for the young men members and friends in this area and on this subject... Young Men Missionary Movie night was born. On Friday, with 7 young men, about half members half friends, we all climbed into one tiny public van and went to the church to watch a short video of the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and to have a short lesson. It was so cool to see these young guys share their beliefs with their friends, all the while enjoying themselves with a nice little movie. Well sure enough the first thing they asked afterwards was when we can do it again so it looks like Young Men Missionary Movie Night is going to be a regular thing in these coming weeks.

This past week Elder Nuñez and I went to the Plaza de Armas to pick up a package his mom sent him from Argentina, and sure enough it was filled with Mate (the name of an argentine herb/tea and the special cup/straw that you use to drink it) and it is fair to say now I am addicted to my new mate he gifted me.

Well this has been another great week here in El Milagro and I think we will see a few more baptisms this month before Elder Nuñez heads off home.

Until next week!

Elder Jack Vassau