Monday, November 24, 2014

November 24

 the Ocampo Quintero family.

the family, my companion and I, the mission leader, and a recent convert from the ward. The recent convert is the one in yellow and he's awesome. He's deaf but I've been learning a lot of Spanish sign language and I can easily communicate with him. The ward mission leader got married the day before.

So if you all remember last week I asked for your prayers so that Milton Ocampo and Andrea Quintero could get married before Milton had to move. After I left the computers that day we went to visit them and turns out that he didn't have to move until late December. But thenon Saturday we went to visit them and he said he had to go on Sunday, yesterday. In Colombia marriages are a super huge, complicated process, but thanks to a huge miracle that is hard to explain we had all the necessary papers. There's a priest who works in the notary office who trusts us to do weddings. So when Milton told us he couldn't get married because he had to move, we went to grab the papers in our house and about on hour later we married them right there in their house. They bought a cheap ring in a store and we called a couple witnesses, it turned out super awesome. And now they're married. And that's how we do things in the Colombia Barranquilla mission. We taught their last lesson to them all as a family yesterday and I felt like crying, but the good news is that Milton is going to a village where the church has a branch close by and the rest of the family will be here for a while. So thanks a ton for your constant prayers in their behalf.

Santos and Ana Dilia were all good to get baptized this Saturday but they didn't go to church yesterday. We'll be passing by to see what happened and if there's a possibility of them getting baptized this week or in the next couple weeks if not.

Esilda was also going to get baptized this week but she has cancer and she has to go to Barranquilla this weekend for a medical visit, so I guess it'll be next week. I have learned a ton of pacience during my mission. At first I would be super frustrated by these things but now I'm super calm. I guess it all comes down to learning to trust in God. I have seen so many times in my life and in my mission how God brings things about in His own way, so you just have to obey the commandments and trust (D&C 123:17)

Interesting comment of the week is that Lexi Garrett gets home from her mission this week. It's super strange since I went to the MTC the very same day that she did. That's the benefit of being a man: your mission lasts longer.

Well I love you all and hope you have a great week. I should have a super busy week with exchanges with the assistants, zone conference, revision of all the houses in the zone with the senior couple in the mission, and other fun things waiting.

Elder Wilson

Monday, November 17, 2014

November 17

This week was pretty good because we really didn't have anything to do other than dedicate ourselves to proselyting. The area I'm in is really great. In my last area in Barranquilla, it was super hard to get someone to listen to the message, even members sometimes were too busy. But here it's awesome, in 2 hours we can have 3 or even 4 lessons if we work really hard. I love to teach fast, efficient lessons so I have been having a great time here. There are a lot of people getting ready to get baptized soon, and I expect that in November and December we should have between 4-7 baptisms. 

We are teaching a family Ocampo Quintero. The mom Andrea, the dad is Milton, and we teach one of their sons named Anderson. They have more children but they don't live there since they are from separate spouses. They are awesome. Andrea is super ready to get baptized and Milton is quickly getting ready. Anderson is also excited but progresses a little more slowly. We are praying for a miracle but we don't know what we really want to happen. The problem is that Milton lost his job this last week and they offered him one in Medellin, another city. He's planning on going this week without his family until they can go join him in a couple weeks. But they need to get married. We have all the papers they need but we need the 100,000 pesos. So the situation's a little complicated, we don't know what has to happen, but God does so we'll see what He decides to do.

Another family we are teaching is Santos and Ana Dilia. They are awesome.  They always go to church and Santos has overcome a drinking addiction he had. They are going to get married November 29th (pray for that as well) and baptized shortly thereafter. 

Another lady is named Esilda. She also has to get married (see a pattern) but is ready to do it. She has the money, desperately wants to get married so she can get baptized, but has to wait for some medical tests to get finished before her baptism. Well really she doesn't have to but she wants to.

Other than that there are a couple of youth we're teaching who want to get baptized, but I think for now that'll do on the descriptions. My companion here is awesome. He's been in the mission for like 18, 19 months now and works really hard and is a great zone leader. Of all the leaders in the mission he's been a leader for the longest. I'm super lucky to learn from him. For his birthday today we had a zone activity where we watched Cloudy with a chance of Meatballs 2, ate hamburgers and hotdogs (Colombian ones - not so good) and played soccer. We ended it up with a surprize water balloon ambush by my companion and I. Super fun.

Well I love you all and hope you have a great week.
Elder Wilson

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 10

 a pic with my lunch from Pedro Ascencia last week
 Elder Richardson and I with the Bishop's family and a couple less active sisters we teach
 the awesome bus I took to get to Valledupar
Caribbean. I will come back some day to enter those waters.

Wow this week has been a huge asventure. I'll give you a play by play. Monday night they called me about transfers, turns out I left Alfonso López and got send to the farthest part of the mission that white people can go to, Valledupar. My companion is Elder Abad from Argentina, he's awesome but for time I'll have to give more details next week.

Tuesday - I went to the terminal in Soledad (a suburb of Barranquilla) to get the bus for the 6 hour bus ride. While on the bus I had an awesome experience. I felt strongly that I had to go to the front of the bus and start contacting everyone. So I went there and in front of everyone explained that I'm a missionary and everything, invited them all to hear the message, took down their info, etc. I was nervous but I said a prayer and felt like Paul while I shared my testimony with them all. I got to Valledupar at like 7 at night, but since I'm now zone leader and new miassionaries got in late, we had to be in the terminal until 11:30 waiting. We slept with 6 missionaries in our house for a night, until they could get to their houses, and we all pulled matresses onto the roof of our house. It was awesome to sleep under the stars and it was super cold, since Valledupar is a valley in the Sierra Nevadas. But don't think that it's not blazing hot during the day. It's just like Barranquilla. Hot and muggy. 

Wednesday - worked normally, there is a great family we're teaching here who wants to get baptized but needs to get married. They are just waiting for their papers. The Ocampo Quintero.

Thursday - Got back on a bus to go back to Barranquilla for leadership council. Slept the night with President Searle and his wife in their penthouse in a huge tower. I was taken aback by how awesome thier house was - heated water in the shower, oven, toaster, microwave, clothes dryer, piano, air conditioning (I got to sleep with a blanket for the first time since Bogota), etc. Ate dinner with pte. Searle and another pair of zone leaders who were there with us. 

Friday - Leadership conference. All the zone leaders, the assistants, and the sister training leaders get together and discuss problems the mission's having and what can be done to solve it. a super experience. Then we went out to visit with an assistant in their area, and at like9 PM my companion and I, the other zone leaders that were there, the assistants, and pte and his wife all had a super dinner in presidents house.

Saturday - bus back home.

Sunday - 9 investigators in church, 7 progressing

Monday - normal.

This week has been crazy but also really awesome. I've learned a ton and I know that I've got to learn. My address is the same as before to send me stuff, but if you want to look up my house on Google Earth, I live in the Calle 28B con 5B in Valledupar. By a small field.

Well I love you all and hope you're doing great
Elder Wilson

Monday, November 3, 2014

November 3

 Yalissa's baptism
part of the zone after the movie

Well the obvious highlight of my week was Yalissa's baptism on Saturday. It all turned out great. She got to the church an hour late though and wasn't answering our phone calls so we were super nervous but in the end it all turned out fine. It was great, after the baptism she had a time to share her testimony, and then her evangelical grandmother also shared her testimony haha. Her grandmom is super evengelical and has the tradition of everyone yelling amen and stuff like that in church, so I think when she didn't hear anyone saying that stuff she started to try and get us all more excited, it was way funny. After her testimony, she said "who lives?!" and the member of the bishopric who conducted the meeting kind of muttered God lives and she sat down. But really she shared a great testimony, Yalissa too. Yalissa invited some college friends to the baptism and they went, and we saw that one of them was crying. We'll be working to get in contact with her to teach her too.

Today we went to lunch with Pedro Ascencio, a convert from Ciudadela. It was great, he told me that he and his wife are planning on going to the temple to get sealed in March. My zone leaders gave me permission to go and we went for a quick lunch before a zone activity in Ciudadela. It was great to see him. I'd send a pic but this computer doesn't read SD cards so I can't until next week. But I do have some pics from other missionaries that I'll send.

Sorry for the short letter, don't have much time because we got back late from watching How to Train a Dragon 2 as a zone. Tonight they tell us what'll happen tomorrow for transfers, I really think I'm going to go from some things that president Searle was asking me.

Elder Wilson