Monday, December 26, 2016

Week 19

Hola mi familia!
This week was a ton of tracting. With very little success. Everyone we ran into said they were to busy getting ready for Christmas to let us talk to them for 5 minutes. It was hard because we were just trying to share the 2 minute Christmas video with them, and nobody would let us.

That's basically all we did Saturday and we ended up sharing the video 3 times. It was fine though because it was something to distract me from thinking about the Skype the next day. Because I knew it was going to be a late call, so the longer I put off thinking about it the better haha.

We met a couple new families that could be really good potentials, but we haven't taught them yet so we are for sure. But they appeared to be really interested. So hopefully it goes well with them.
We met with Mario cardiel again and we went away from talking about the bom and focused more on what else he has to do to get baptized.

And we told him that after he does all that, then he will get his answer to the bom being true. He seemed like he liked the idea, and he's starting by coming to all three hours of church. Then we will work on harder things for him like coffee. But that's gonna come with time.

We had another visit with victor and his family. They are probably going to be our most promising family. But we ended up just talking to them, I don't know how we got off topic. But he said he had read all the testimonies of the three and eight and the introduction. He said by next time they would have more questions.

Other than that, we really just tracted. So it was a very quick week, which was nice. We are starting to really make sure we work with the members more, so that's the focus of this week.

I can't believe it's going to be 2017 already. Next thing I know this will all be over, so I've got to make the most of it while I can. I loved being able to talk to you all again, just another short 5 months till I can again.

 Love you all,
Con amor, Elder Williams

Monday, December 19, 2016

Week 18

The weather is pretty crazy here. One day we were freezing our tails off. We put like 3 hand warmers in our shoes and pockets. Then the next day it's back up in the 70's and there's tornado warnings all day. But it was way nice outside where we are at. Then yesterday it dropped down even lower than before and snowed/rained, so lots of black ice. But I think it's just going to get colder. So good luck to me this week without car, haha. As far as sickness I'm good, just had somewhat of a cough ever since I left. But still doing great. Making sure I work out pretty hard so I don't put on the southern 30 pounds.

This week was a rather slow one. We seemed to find more suajili and Arabic speakers than Spanish speakers. So it was filled with a ton of knocking and not so much success. But it's ok because that will eventually come. Just gotta keep pushing through.

Monday we had the lesson with victor, the guy that met the church 18 years back. And at first we thought it was going to be another "we're catholic and are never going to change, but we respect everyone else's religion" because that's exactly what his wife said.  but then after she said that, our member started going off about the 10 commandments and how they worship images instead of god. And I could tell she was getting offended. But then her husband jumps in and says he agrees.

That's why he doesn't attend the church. Because he believes in the Bible, but he doesn't like all the false doctrines that are taught everywhere. So we started talking about how no matter where you go in the lds church, the doctrine that is taught is the same. So then we started to teach a lesson, but our member started going off about something else. (He's 81 and a little too excited to share the gospel.
He just always goes off on tangents about where they are from and 30 minute long life stories about what we are talking about. We still love him though.) so we couldn't really teach them. But we invited them to read the introduction and 3 nefi 11. And we are pretty sure he's read it. So we are going back this Thursday with one of our fresh rm's so it should be good.

The next couple days we had straight knocking planned and we only found Africans and Arabians. But we still talked to them as much as we could and then got their address for the English elder here that speaks suajili.

Saturday we had a lesson with margarita again and I invited her to be baptized, and she said yes but she wants to wait until she has more time to come to church every week. So we figured out what she needed to do in order to accomplish that and invited her to do that.
Hopefully she follows through.

Yesterday snowed and was super cold and that's about all that happened. But we met a super nice Muslim family from Iraq and struggled through the language barrier. But it was still nice to find a Muslim family that would let us in to talk.

That's it for the week! I don't know when we are planning on FaceTimeing, but I'll try to figure it out by the end of the day, otherwise I'll let you know by Christmas. We just don't know when our dinners are going to be and our church is at an awkward 1.

Con amor,
Elder Williams

Monday, December 12, 2016

Week 17

So Tuesday was a little miserable because we had to bike across town to get to an appointment that didn't end up happening. And it was raining and super cold. So we decided to go over to the English elders' apartment to finish our studies. Then we had them take us to our dinner so we left our bikes at their apartment. We later regretted that decision, haha.  It then for English class instead of helping teach I went in with the ward choir and helped them practice. Which actually worked because afterwards they didn't sound like dying cats! Haha. It was a lot of fun though, I miss singing everyday.

The next day we ended up walking so far and we didn't have time to pick up our bikes. So we were walking a ton. But it was totally worth it in the end because we needed up on a road we would t have tracted otherwise. And we came in contact with a super golden investigator. He answered the door and after a little bit he's like "wait what church are you from?" And we told him and he was like "oh! I went to that church for like 3 months 18 years ago and I loved it, but I moved to Atlanta and lost contact with them." Then we said there's a reason we found him then. We asked if he had a bom and he said he did in the past and loved it too. So we gave him another and set a return for tonight at 6:30!
Thursday we had to walk again which wasn't too bad, but this time it was to get our bikes so that's probably why it wasn't bad, haha. Then we had dinner at grandma morenos house. She told us to call her that. So the branch here is basically 3 huge families, and she's the mom of one of them. But she always gives us so much food. Like that time was 3 huge burritos each. We luckily convinced her to let us take one one for lunch the next day, because we were dying! But she also always has a referral for us. Because she rents her rooms out in her house to a ton of Hispanics. So she just invites one of them to come talk with us and we usually can do the first lesson. It's pretty nice actually, haha.

Then Friday was the mission tour with elder klebingat. Holy cow that man is a powerhouse. And he's German so he was super bold with us. But it was really, really good. I learned so much from it and a lot of things I can improve on.

Saturday we had a kid go out with us who just got back from his mission and it was awesome. He suggested we go to a family friends house. And it ended up being a possible investigator that we had been trying to get in with. So with this kid we got to talk with this guy for awhile. He owns caracasville. You can look it up online. He's such a good cook. And he invited us back over for the 27 because he is busy up until then.  Then that night we met a family from Costa Rica and sat and talked with the mom for a couple hours. It was cool because we taught her the restoration and she agreed with everything. Up until we said the bom is another testament. She says that wording makes it another bible. So we tried explaining it for awhile. Still don't know if she fully understood. But then we invited her to be baptized and she wasn't ready to say yes. Because she feels like then evrythings she's ever done before doesn't mean anything. Including he baptism in 87. So we tried explaining it doesn't mean they have no value, just that it wasn't done by the proper authority. We really just shouldn't have invited her to baptism yet. But I got it back to her reading the bom and finding out if that's true. And then after she can decide about the rest. So hopefully when we go back Wednesday she's there. But she was super awesome and I've never talked so much during a lesson.

Sunday was a highly productive/unproductive day. Haha. First reason is we had a lesson with Manuel before church and got him on date for January 7th. And I really think this ones going to happen. He's already come to church three times and is planning on staying. So just gotta make sure he knows the bom is true! Then right after church we booked it over to Nashville with the Aldays and went to the walk through Bethlehem. The actual event wasn't that cool, but it was a perfect opportunity to talk and gain their trust for a couple hours. Then afterwards they took us out to eat. whoops. Haha. We mad a judgement call and decided it was ok, and it it was good we did. Another long time to talk to them. And we got them to come to the Christmas dinner this Friday. Now we just need to get in and teach them! They keep canceling on us because of their daughters swim meets. But I think it will be easier now. Then we came back to the apartment and did 12 week for the last time! (It's the first 2 transfers in the field training thing) it's bitter sweet. Because it's super boring, but now we have to leave the apartment at 12 instead of 1. So another hour to tract when nobody is home! Yay!

That's the week! Love you fam!

Con amor,
Elder Williams

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 16 - Hermitage

So this week was an interesting one. We had exchanges from Monday night until Wednesday night. And I took over the area so I had to really test my Spanish?? but it went rather well in that aspect. I could really feel the gift of tongues helping me. Because I didn't have elder Webster here to lean on. That was a fun couple days and I'm so glad I have elder Webster back. Except transfers are this next Tuesday so I'm not sure if we will be together that much longer. I have a feeling I'm going to a new area. But we will know for sure on Saturday!

On Tuesday we had district meeting/ interviews with president. Nothing really exciting there. Just got to talk with him for a couple minutes.

Best white person moment of the week! We knocked on a door at 7:30(not even late yet) and the wife answered the door with the husband right behind her. We said our normal missionary thing and then the husband comes out and just starts yelling at us. He was like "this is a no soliciting neighborhood, get out of here." We reply with "not soliciting and if he knew any Hispanics around." He says "not in here, you're going to try a different neighborhood. And you have no right to be knocking doors this late at night. You're scaring the crap out of people. I had a gun pointed at the door when you knocked. Now get the **** out of here." We replied with "alright have a merry Christmas." His face was priceless, he couldn't believe we were so cool about it haha. Couldn't stop laughing about it for the next little bit haha.

We found a ton of really promising families this week. One of them we knocked on their door at 8:30 and they let us in and we didn't leave until 9:45... whoops. And we didn't even teach anything. But we just talked about how they had met with the missionaries a year before and somehow lost contact. But they were super nice and awesome and we just sat and got to be their friends. This Sunday, if we get permission, we are going to go to something called "walk through Bethlehem" with them and just really get a solid relationship with them. But they would seriously be the coolest members:)
We also were able to come in contact with margarita at her house at 8:30(seems to be a pattern with us). But we just ended up helping her clean her whole kitchen, because her two grown kids who live with her don't help at all. But so we were there till ten..... mega whoops. It's ok, it was for a good cause haha.

Yesterday we accidentally slept in until 8... both of us turned off our iPads the night before and didn't realize the other did to. So elder Webster luckily woke up naturally. But we freaked out and go ready super fast. We had to end up not doing language study, so it was a costly hour and a half. But at least we didn't do it on purpose! I set up my alarm clock from the mtc so that wouldn't happen again haha.
But church we had 2 investigators show up and a less active family too. And the mom of the less active family even got up and bore her testimony! It was awesome. One of the investigators was a golden investigator just placed in our laps. We met him last week at church when one of the most recent converts brought him. He stayed all 4 hours last week and 5 hours this week (we had dinner after church and then we taught him the first lesson) but the lesson went pretty good and we had his friend with us so it was super easy. He's already planning on staying at his church before we started teaching him so we just have to get him all the info and get him baptized! Haha, that's the power of member missionary work:)

That's about it for the week. Love you all and I'm praying for you!

Con amor,
Elder Williams