Monday, January 20, 2014

Jan 20

Well this week I had to say goodbye to Elder Franco and now I´m with elder Villarreal from Panama. He´s a great missionary who already has 18 months of experience. I was a little disappointed because I wanted to train but oh well, I know that with Elder Villarreal we will have a lot of sucess here. It will be a little interesting becuase he already told me that since he has more experience we are always just going to do what he says but I decided I´m just going to let him do his thing and try to learn from all the strengths he has. 

Brooke and Sam, that was great to hear that your child will be a girl, that is awesome! Also I hope that all the rest of you had a good time celebrating all the birthdays. I´m super happy to hear that you bought an elliptical machine. I lost 60 pounds on one of those before the mission.

Im super happy that I´m still here in Ciudadela. The ward is awesome and the members love us as missionaries so much. We have really been improving on the way that we work with members and have been having good results. The members all know who the investigators are and they go out of their way to say hi in church and sometimes even to visit their houses. There is a rule from the first presidency that the missionaries stay in an area more or less for 6-8 months. I would love to stay for that long here. But I´m also upset that I got sent here so early in the mission, since now every other ward I have will be a little more challenging.

Well not a lot happened this week what with my last companion going home and my new companion getting to know the area, but we have a lot of people progressing and I think we will be having a lot of baptisms in the near future. I love you all and I hope you are all doing great!

Elder Wilson

Monday, January 13, 2014

Jan 13

 Eva at her baptism

A lunch some members gave us to say goodbye to my companion. Also right now we are headed over to Evas pizza store for one last pizza she wanted to give him. With the holidays and my companion leaving, I think Ive gained some of the weight I lost.

This week was really great. There were a lot of really small moments in which I was able to feel a lot of The Lords love and my own, for the people and for this work. One of them was of course Eva Ruiz at her baptism. After the service she shared her testimony and it was awesome. She talked about how much she loved us and was grateful that we had helped her to find the answers she was looking for in her life. It was a great experience and helped me feel even more grateful for the trust that the Lord gave me when he called me to this work.

Something funny happened which was that I accidentally said in a letter to the mission president that my mom died a few weeks ago. I was talking about Maria and that I understand her situation because I lived the same a few YEARS ago. So I got surprised when I got a phone call from the mission president asking me about my moms death a few weeks ago. But in the end we just laughed about it. I really love President Searle. Hes been great for the mission. He shows missionaries how to trust in each other and how to love. Also he raised the monthly typical number of baptisms from about 80 to over 100. Its awesome. Plus as an area the instruction we are living in the mission is to spend more time with the members, but we are still baptising more.

Elder Franco goes tomorrow. Transfers are on Wednesday. Im excited to  see what happens but Im sure I stay here in Ciudadela. I hope so. I love this ward a lot. The members love the missionaries and we are making a lot of progress.

We have been teaching an investigator named Perdo this week. His story is awesome, like it belongs in the Liahona or something. He works in a prison and was praying one night to receive guidance. A while before that his girlfriend, now wife, talked to him about the Book of Mormon, and he was praying to know if he should read it or not. So he was praying and walking in the deserted part of the prison when he saw the book on the ground covered in poop. He picked it up and cleaned it off, and now hes going to be baptized the 16th of February.

Love you all,
Elder Wilson

Monday, January 6, 2014

Jan 6

This week was awesome. First off, we had 9 investigators come to church which for me is unheard of and a huge miracle. I felt so glad to be able to see all those people right where they needed to be. Equally awesome was that we saw 4 less active members that we´ve been working with come to church. I love seeing them come becuase I know some of the challenges that they are going through and I love being able to see them turn to the gospel for help. We are teaching an investigator named Maria that I just realized I wrote about last week. She´s the one where her husband died super recently. It has been great to see her feel some of the peace that comes from the gospel. She still hasn´t accepted a baptismal date but she has come a few times to church and I´m sure that the Spirit will keep working with her until she does.

Eva Ruiz is all set for her baptism this Sunday. She is the owner of a pizza store and sometimes when we visit her we have to go to the business and she gives us a free pizza. She told us once that she feels horrible because of the Sabbath Day. She makes the most money on that day and she can come to church each week but she can´t close her store Sundays. We talked to the mission president and he said it was all okay. But it was cool to see that she herself wanted to find out how she can best keep that commandment. The relief society president said that she participates well in the ward classes and that she is rock solid. But still please pray for her.

I was able to see a lot of hte tender mercies of the Lord thjis week. First off, one night we were visiting a member in their house to share a message. The area presidency tells us that we naad to visit the members very often to share a message and leave come commitment. Well anyways after the lesson the member just mentioned that everyone hopes that the missionaries will pass by their house and share a quick message. Just that simple phrase made me feel so happy and blessed to be able to participate in this work.

Second, we had the best turn out ever I think as a ward this week. Usually there are like 140 people, but this week there were 197. I think it might be because of the new year but either way 197 people were able to take the sacrament and renew their covenants with the Lord. I´m praying that all those people will keep coming to church and keep feeling the Spirit´s joy. It was so full in the chapel that we ran out of chairs.

My companion only has one week left but he keeps on being very diligent and hard working. I´ve been able to learn a lot from him and I´m super glad for his example. I love you all and I hope you have a great new year!