Family and Friends,
Jumping into things: I was wrong about Cuenca. In my first two emails I sent out of Cuenca I played the "This is going to be Ruff" Card and the "Cuenca is Impossible" Card. But today I would like to play my "I was Wrong" Card.
This week was an amazing week here in Cuenca. Cold. Wet. and colder. It started raining this week... and it really hasn´t stopped. Rain in Guayaquil was awesome. It was warm and it cooled the super heated days... I loved working in the rain in Guayaquil. Here in Cuenca it is naturally cool. I wear a sweater. My Dad, with some personal revelation, bought me a heavy duty jacket (something I never thought I would use in Heat Swathed Ecuador) and I now use it to proselyte. But when the rains started... Now I am cold and wet. A fun combination when you want to work fast and hard.
Anyway, through the wet and cold Elder Caal and I are still at work. We tried to do EVERYTHING we could to get the message of the Restoration out to everyone. I would not be surprised if we had over 100 contacts last week. We did splits with the members, held a Family Night, went to a few ward meetings, planned a few more activities, and ended up the week with the best results that Tomebamba has seen in months: 1 baptism, 19 lessons, 12 New Investigators, and 2 people in Sacrament Meeting! Whew... if you all only knew what it takes to get results like that. I think I went to bed each night dead tired (and cold).
My shoes finally fell completely apart. It was a sad day to throw them away. I have now gone through 2 pairs during my mission. I think the rain is what did them in. They couldn´t put up with an ice cold liquid sloshing around the inside and outside all day. So they went belly up and died. I am now using my 3rd pair and they will easily last me to the end of my mission (which surprisingly is only a few short months away (I really am not trying to think of it...)).
Daniela Flores was the girl that was baptised. The Elders before me worked to reactivate her family and I showed up just in time to get her baptised. Her dad after the baptism privately thanked us for everything we do for him and reminded us that we have to keep visiting the family. He shouldn´t worry. We are obligated to teach the Recent Converts and Less Actives: His family meets both requirements.
We are now planning the baptism for Ximena Zhirapa (Cool spelling no?). She was a blessing to find and is super excited to be baptised. The ward members are SUPER excited for 2 weeks in a row of baptisms. The Bishop even called us last night to invite us to his house to teach his friends during a Family Home Evening. We already have plans... but a split should do the trick. The members are SUPER excited for the work and super ready to help us. What a blessing it is when the members want to help out. I absolutely love it.
I wanted to write some letters home this week... but there were more changes in the mission last night (something that seems to happen ever 2 weeks- as of late) and I was put into a 3some as Elder Garcia left for Guayaquil and Elder Pavioli was left without companion. So we went to the Terminal Terrestre of Cuenca at 7:30 this morning to drop Elder Garcia off. Needless to say: I didn´t get letters off this week. So I would like to Publicly write to a few people:
Someone who just put in their Mission Papers: WOW!!! You will love the mission! Keep strong the next few months... Satan is a killer just before the mission. Let me know where you are going and the mission office address so I can write you.
Someone who is going to Michigan: Thanks for the package. I will try to write back as soon as possible... but I will have to write your parents home... I doubt you will be in your apartment by the time the letter arrives to the states.
Someone who can´t seem to get better: So sorry to hear that your health is doing poorly. I will keep you in my prayers. Maybe you should try working less. Relax. Enjoy life. I love you.
Someone who is in another continent: I got your picture. I love it. Thanks so much for thinking of me. Sorry, I wont try sending you letters while you are living so far away. I doubt they would arrive.
Someone who went to France: Thanks for the Birthday card. The 10 lines were super funny. Did you marry your missionary that got home last summer?
And to all of you other "someones" out there: Thanks for your support.
Learning I was wrong,
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