It's a blast when you work hard. We worked super hard this week. Probably the hardest week I've worked in the mission. We had a day where we found 7 new investigators and had 6 lessons. That was unreal for Choquehuanca. I LOVE IT. But that is like nothing compared to the progress we`ve been having with the branch president. When I got transferred to Choquehuanca, President Harbertson told me that the 4 Elders that got sent there all had specific reasons for being there. I'm starting to see that reason for me. It was CRAZY. We made an appointment to meet with the branch president and... he came! Then we talked about the ward and he was telling US what he and us need to do. Then he actually did ALL of it. Prayers and fasts get answered. The crazy thing is that when he finally did his job, everybody else started to do theirs. I feel like by the end of my time here we will actually have a functioning branch. That really is like my dream. hahaElder Halverson is going to be a great missionary, I know it. He basically knows everything he needs to do. It's just tough with the language and it is hard for me to always speak Spanish to him when he doesn't understand, so I end up speaking in English and it doesn't help. We are going to fix that this week though. 100% Spanish total siempre.
Monday, February 24, 2014
February 24, 2014 - Lamb blood and intestine soup! Yum!
I forgot to take some pictures of Choquehuanca for you guys but basically it’s a small town in the middle of a field surrounded by green hills and mountains. All the buildings are either adobe or concrete and brick. We live with a family whose house is right across the street from the church, which is nice. However, our house is separate from theirs and we only have one room with our beds, a dresser, and our desks. The bathroom is nice and we have indoor plumbing with a shower with warm water. Also it’s bigger than most showers here. The only downside is that it’s connected to their house so if I ever have to use the bathroom in the middle of the night it sucks because it’s cold and sometimes raining. The family aren’t members except for their son and he is like 15 years old.
Our pensionista (the people who feed them every day) lives like a mile away from our house but they are building a new bigger house that we are helping them build and when we finish we are going to move in with them, which will be really nice because we won’t have to walk a mile to eat and their whole family are members. With our clothes, we just give them to a member every week who has a washer (because most members wash their clothes by hand). There are no mosquitoes here because it’s too cold and high. However, there are like mini tarantulas here and you know how much I hate spiders. I found 3 this week, thankfully I only find them on the road and not in our house. The food is the same every day, we eat rice, potatoes, chicken, sometimes alpaca, sheep, or cow, bread, and eggs. Thankfully our pensionista is a good cook but it’s still kinda bland.
We are still working a lot with reactivating members here but we still have some investigators. It’s hard to proselyte, though, because the town is so small so we have already talked to a lot of people. I’m still trying to learn people’s names but there are a few people who we are getting really close with to reactivating. It takes a while to teach people here though because a lot of them are really uneducated because they are farmers. Also a lot of old people here only speak kechawa so I don’t know what they are saying and I only know a few kechawa phrases. we had a really good day because we taught 7 lessons which is a lot for a day here. Normally we only teach 2 or 3 because the people aren’t there at the time we set up with them.
I really love the storms we get here like almost every day. There are huge thunderstorms that pass right over us. A normal day you will be looking one direction and it’s blue skies and then you look in the opposite direction and there are dark grey thunder heads coming right at us. An average we get around 50 members to show up but the last 2 weeks we have gotten 2 different investigators to come to church. One of the investigators we are working with didn’t understand much of the first lesson but the next time we talked to him he said it was like we planted a seed in his mind and he is starting to understand more. Me and my companion have really been trying to be as obedient as we can and have really seen the blessings coming from that.
Ok something weird I ate yesterday was lamb blood and intestine soup which strangely enough reminded me of a mcchicken.
Choquehaunca is in the Puno region but is still a few hours from Lake Titicaca so I haven’t seen it yet plus it’s also out of my zone. Anyway I love you guys and I’m having a great time here!
Love Elder Halverson
Chase and Elder Nicholls
(I'm adding a blurb from a letter that Elder Nicholls sent to his family regarding their mission. I am told that all his past companions have not worked very hard and their area has not been very productive [ie. church starts late, branch president doesn't show up to meetings, etc.]. I'm happy to report that Chase is working really hard and there is finally success in the area!)