Called To Serve

Ecuador Guayaquil North Mission. August 2014 ~ August 2016

Sunday, May 31, 2015

May 2015


Sorry I didn't send an email last week. We went to the cyber really early in the day, and no one had written me yet, so I just wrote to president and we left. We were going to head back later in the day, but never made it back because we ended up short on time.

As far as your questions, Spanish pretty much isn't a problem anymore. I do wish I had a little better vocabulary. I still struggle with that sometimes. As for other things to send in the package, you should send more EFY music because Cammi didn't include much of that last time. Also, I kind of miss sour gummi worms, so you can send a package of those. Ties are always cool to get, but don't spend too much because I am really putting a toll on my ties. I can't really think of anything else that is too important. I'm getting less and less "I want that! I want this!" I think it has a lot to do with the situations I see here. I'm probably going to get back home and go into shock with all of the things I have.

As for me this week, we had a capacitacion (training). It was a video for all of the ward councils in the South America northwest region: Ecuador, Colombia, Peru, Bolivia, and Venezuela. Other than that, we did 2 invasion of sectors this week. That pretty much means all of the missionaries from the zone go to one sector and contact for about 2 hours. It's pretty fun. I also had an intercambio and went to a different sector on Friday. We taught a family that my companion and I had contacted a week earlier, but they don't live in our sector, so we had to give the reference to the other elders. They're a super cool family. We went to visit them, and we put a baptism date, and they accepted. I just have to find an investigator like that that actually lives in my sector.

A priest in my ward got his mission call this week. He is going to Honduras. The family invited us over when he opened up his call, and it was super cool! We had a small missionary testimony meeting. Both of his parents served missions, so they shared some of their best experiences, then they invited us to share what we wanted. I just want to say to y'all that I am so happy for this time that I have to serve a mission, I have grown more in this 8-9 months than ever before in my life, and I still have a lot more growth that I will be able to have in the coming year. This opportunity is so special and I have learned so much. So yeah, that didn't make much sense, strangely enough I was able to express it better in Spanish. 

This is a cool teaching tool we use. The first nail is Jesus Christ because he's the base of our religion. The other nails represent a different fundamento (principle) of the church. The nails can change depending on what we want to teach, but they're often Prophets, Apostles, Priesthood, Revelation, Scriptures, and whatever other thing we want to teach, like missionary work, or church attendance, etc... Try it out!

This was a little thing we did for our "Dia de la Mamita" we gave one to all of the hermanas in the ward that do a lot for us. The rice krispies turned out pretty well, the thing that didn't turn out quite as well was the shape of the hearts.

One of the members of the ward has a cat that just had babies, and one of the kittens came out white, so they named it Robert (after their favorite gringo).

My companion took a little nap, and I had a little fun... probably wasn't a very good companion thing to do, but his reaction when he woke up about 15 minutes later was really hilarious.


This week we found an incredibly prepared person to teach. She talked to the bishop, and he presented us to her on Saturday, and we already taught her a watered down version of The Restoration, and she came to church yesterday. That was really awesome to find someone so prepared. We also found a really cool family. The dad is actually a member. He got baptized when he was a teenager, but he hasn't gone to church in years and years and years. We're teaching his whole family now, and I think they're coming to church next Sunday. We're also teaching someone who is pretty much deaf. We have to talk really slow, and really loud, and even then he doesn't always understand things. We end up teaching mostly with pictures and writing down short phrases for him to read, but his vision isn't the best either. It's definitely the most peculiar teaching experience I've had. He's an interesting guy for sure.  So yeah, some good people this week.

I MADE PANCAKES! They were pretty good, but not as good as the ones we make at home.

We went bowling again. It's one of the easiest activities we have that's actually fun. I think I've been bowling more times in Ecuador than in the United States.

This was the sunset the other day. The camera did a pretty good job of capturing it, but not perfect. It was actually a little more vibrant. It was probably one of the coolest sunsets I've seen in my life... just missing the ocean and the beach!

April 2015


We watched conference in English this time. We had a room of the gringo missionaries and it was nice to actually understand (although by now I could have understood in Spanish). This sector is more affluent than my first one, so pretty much everybody has tv and internet in their house, so conference  attendance was pretty sad. There were maybe 15 people there on Saturday, and 50 on Sunday.

We spent most of the week focusing on inviting everybody to conference, and then nobody came, which was pretty disheartening. We had one person that really wanted to come, but she couldn't. That was a bummer, but good that she understood the importance of going.

I didn't take any pictures this week, and I dont have much to share because like I said, we were just trying to get people to come to conference, and then no one came.

Sorry I dont send very long messages, but to be honest not that much different happens during the week. I don't want to be one of those missionaries that have every little detail of their week in the email. Right now we dont really have investigators that are progressing, so we're doing the same thing... walking a lot, meeting a lot of new people, and teaching a couple of lessons. 

We had intercambios with the ZL's this week. The ZL's sector is the richest sector in this mission, and one of the richest in all of Ecuador.

We are still teaching our English classes. we have about 15 people every week. It's really weird to think in English. Before I thought it was weird that Spanish had two ways to say to be (ser y estar) but now I think it's weird that English only has one... I think thats pretty much it.

This is the building we're living in now. It's a pretty nice building, but our apartment is a little small for my liking, and we have no windows. It feels like we're stuck in a dungeon.

Elder Lund was a little sick and feeling really tired this week, and so yeah... this is him studying Lehi's Dream.

In this ward I have had to give 2 on the spot talks, but I don't really have anything prepared, I just kind of wing it. It's really not that hard when I'm studying everyday. It's a little different than giving a lesson, but it's really not that hard anymore. We sometimes have to teach Gospel Principles, but that's literally just like how we teach the lessons, so we could pretty much do that in our sleep.

As for this week, we had a baptism out of nowhere. He is a son of two people who were members. He was already baptized once, but his records got lost, so we taught him all the lessons this week and baptized him on Saturday. He is 12, is super smart, and already knows he wants to go on a mission. He asked me to baptize him, which was cool.
Other than that, today we went to the city and did some exploring. We went to some small shops and did some bargaining. It's really funny because the people are always so shocked when we started speaking good spanish. I bought some cool things to remember Ecuador.

I have pics to send, but we're short on time and the computer is being a little dumb, so I will send them next week!


This is the baptism of Nayed. We forgot the clothes for him, so we had to run back to the house. We were sprinting through the streets, so that was interesting, and when I baptized him his foot came up, so I had to do it again.
This is la familia Pareja. They changed wards this week, so they had a little goodbye dinenr with us. They are super nice and super cool and it's a bummer to lose them.

Bye Elder Lund! We had a really weird cambio this week. We passed Sunday Night without a call, so we assumed we were going to be together more time, and then Monday night they called us and said Elder Lund had cambios. I'm not exactly sure what Elder Lund is doing in this picture, but this is just kind of how he is.

This is the 2nd counserlor, the Bishop, and my new companion Elder Torres. I only had 6 weeks with Elder Lund and they already changed him. So that happened... Elder Torres is from Peru. He's a cool guy.
This was a pretty cool sunset. It rained really hard that night, and during the day it was super hot, that's Ecuador for ya.