Buenos dias! 02 Jan 2012
Another week has come and gone, but I am not complaining. I hope that everything went well for the New Year celebrations. This week had some highs and lows. We had some major struggles because of the holidays and everyone traveling. We did have some good things happen, but to be blunt the week didn't go how we had planned.
To start off with some good news, I actually talked to Antonio (Ricardo) this week. It was a very pleasant surprise. He is doing extremely well and is moving forward in his life. I am still just so shocked on all the changes that he has made. The gospel has blessed him so much in his life. He went from being an alcoholic to now helping others overcome from their addictions. He has a calling to work with the "12 Step Addiction Recovery Program" and he has also helped to create and open a recovery home in St. George. He is the director of operations for that home. He has received the Aaronic Priesthood and will receive the Melchizedek Priesthood on March 3rd. Then he will be preparing to go to the temple soon. I am just so happy to see how far he has come and grateful that I was able to help him a little. My joy is full to see this happening to him. He is happier than ever and enjoying life. I love how the gospel can bless anyone's life, if they just put it to the test.
Some good things this week - we have a few more baptismal dates with some investigators. Pedro is still progressing really well, but we just have to get him married and to church. Those are the only two things standing in his way of being baptized. We have the whole month of January to work on that. We also have another couple that we are working with. Their names are Jesus and Angelica. They are really awesome and have a great desire to learn and follow Jesus Christ. There are a lot of good things happening, but we were faced with a lot of struggles this week as well.
Cris was supposed to get baptized on Saturday, but to make a long story short; he didn't get baptized. We are both really bummed about it. We have gotten very close to Cris and genuinely love him and want him to just get baptized, because he is completely ready, but he continues to procrastinate his baptism. He seems to come up with excuses the week before the baptism, so we set up another date and then the week of his baptism he throws another one. The main obstacle is his wife. She is Catholic and she hasn't decided to get baptized or to commit herself to just our church, so Cris feels that if he gets baptized and she doesn't want to, that it will just cause problems in their relationship. It is just extremely frustrating when you know someone is so prepared and would be a great member of the church, and they just shy away from it all. We had a lesson with him the night before he was supposed to be baptized, and he was ready to be interviewed, but it was so INTENSE! I have played in numerous sports events and things like that, but I have never been more nervous in my life, then when we were in that lesson with Cris and Maria. My hands were just shaking and I couldn't control it. I just feel such genuine love for this man, that I want him to enter through the door that leads to numerous more blessings, but he is denying himself of those things. But we are going to continue working with him, and to help him and his wife to be ready for baptism. I am hoping that it will be soon.
New Years was good. We were permitted to watch the movie "Up!" It was good to just relax for the night, but it felt super weird to be watching a movie and not out knocking on doors or teaching lessons. It is crazy to think that we are now in the year of 2012. What is even worse to think about it that I go home this year. Time is just moving by faster and faster. I am still stuck in between were it is good that time moves fast, but sad because my mission is fading quicker and quicker. Transfers come at the end of this week. We will actually be apart of them this time. Elder Castro and I were both hoping to get to stay with each other for another transfer, but the Lord has other plans. I am going to be staying here in Cedar City and will be training a new Zone Leader. His name is Elder Pederson. He is from Argentina. I have only met him one time, but I will learn more about him in the next 6 weeks. It is crazy to think that there are only two Argentinians in the mission and I will have served with both of them.
NEWS FROM HOME: (Chad's cousin Zach, got engaged this week!) It is really crazy to hear about Zach and Lily. That is pretty cool though. It just seems that this last month was just a month of engagements or marriages. (Rumor has it that Sarah Rude is getting married! She just graduated last year! Oh My!) I have heard of so many people getting engaged or getting married. 'Tis the season I suppose. I hope that this finds you in high spirits and enjoying the new year. This new year is a time to grow and change, so let's use it to the best of our capabilities.
Live it, Love it, Preach it!
de la vina del Senor!