Monday, August 26, 2013

August 26, 2013

Hi papas,
Wow I cannot believe it is Monday already. It literally felt like two days ago I was emailing you guys. Elder Kunz kept telling me that the last week of transfers always flies by and he was correct. Just to quickly cover a few things:
 1. Elder Kunz and I are staying in the same area for another transfer. None of us received leaderships calls. The only change that occurred was we have one Elder that is going home tomorrow, so another Elder is coming in from a different area. Plus the new Elder will be our District Leader. 
2. To answer Mom's question. With exchanges, we do it within our district. So the District Leader will either go to another companionships' area, or have an Elder come to his area with the other Elder doing the vice versa (Hopefully that make sense). We usually do 2 exchanges per transfer so the District Leader can work with every missionary in the district. So the first time we did exchanges, I stayed in our area with our district leader and Elder Kunz went to his area. The second time I stayed in our area and the companion of our district leader came to our area. So both times I was the senior companion and lead the area, which means I was in charge of planning and getting us to appointments and investigators' homes. Hopefully that answers your question.
3. The language is getting better and I am getting more comfortable speaking it. I am glad you guys like our game. So far we each have won 1 time. This past week was really close it came down to Sunday night during our planning session and I said "Cool" instead of "Chido" so I was pretty angry about it. But it is helping and hopefully will hurt Elder Kunz's wallet more than my wallet :)
Well this week was so much better. We pretty much were able to teach two to four lessons a day which was awesome. We were able to teach some investigators that we hadn't visited for a while which was great as well. But more importantly this week we committed 3 people to baptism which is awesome. There was one hermana that we invited to be baptized and she didn't let me finish the baptism invitation, I said "Will you follow the example of Jesus Christ and be baptized...." and she said yes. It was cool to see how prepared she was after investigating the church for over 4 years. Plus the other exciting thing that happened this week was we had an investigator come to church. For 4 of the 6 weeks in the transfer we didn't have an investigator come to church so we couldn't count them as a progressing investigator. But yesterday the same hermana that we invited to be baptized came to church. Man me and Elder Kunz were so happy and are so excited to help her enter into the covenant of baptism.
So ya this week has been bomb. It was great to it too because the past two weeks were really hard and we didn't have much success. But it was great to see how the Lord does help us in His work when we really focus on doing it His way, and not the normal routine. It was also cool because I could see the Lord helping me with my Spanish as well. On Saturday the Elders Quorum did a bbq (Mexican style bbq are pretty cool by the way and different than American bbq) and I was able to understand the other hermanos as well as talk back to them. So it is really cool to see how the Lord helps His servants when they do the things that are helping the work progress.
Well I think that is pretty much it. Hope all is going well back home. Good luck with the school year this year. Hopefully it won't go by too fast, but I wouldn't count on it. Looking back, the past 3 months have flown by so I wouldn't think it would slow down for school.
Love you all,
Elder Roberts

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

August 19th, 2013

Hey guys,
So ya we are starting week 6 in the mission. I am almost 1/16 of the way done with the mission, and I can't believe how fast this first month has gone by. It literally feels like I got here two days ago. Just goes to show how fast things go by when you are anxiously engaged in a good cause and we need to take advantage of every possible moment in this life.
So to follow up with you question about our baptism. It didn't happen. Like I said the hermano we were going to baptized didn't get the papers he needed to get married and is waiting for them still. But we had dinner with them last night and he said that they are on the way and will be here in the next 2-3 weeks. So hopefully we will be having a baptism next transfer.
So other than that, this week has been super hard. First of we did exchanges again, and I led our area again, so that was fun. We did commit one of our investigators to get baptized in September so that was good. But other than that, this week has been really hard. Our appointments are falling through like crazy and we just can't contact our investigators to teach them and help them keep their commitments. So far it has been teach 1 lesson, then we can't get ahold of them for the next 1-2 weeks because they are working. Then to top it off, we got in a fender bender on Saturday with our car. No one was hurt, but it damaged our car a little bit on the bumper. So ya that was a great way to end the week. It has been super hard, but at the same time a really good learning experience about perseverance and diligence.
Looking back on the week I could definitely tell that I was just going through the motions of a missionary, and not really putting forth a good effort to find, teach, and invite others to come unto Christ. It is crazy how you can get into a rut like that and just go through the motions every day. I have made it a goal recently to treat every day like it was when I was in school at USU and had practice everyday. To go the practice not knowing what to do, and to be prepared as best as I can to work hard. Then when I see the opportunity, to work hard at it and perfect it as best as I can. So hopefully with that mentality we can see a difference in our area and start meeting with our investigators.
So ya nothing really else going on. Hopefully next week I will have some more experiences to talk about. Most likely I will stay in this area for another 6 weeks to finish out my training. I am getting more settled into the area and with the people. The Spanish is slowly improving. Me and Elder Kunz are playing a game every day where we talk in pure Spanish for the entire day, and every time we talk in English we get a point and we keep track of the points for the entire week. Then whoever has the most points has to buy the other person a chocolate milk. It has helped out a tons and I can understand the people a little better. I am in the stage where I can understand a few phrases and can pick out more words, plus it doesn't seem like they are talking as fast, but they are still talking fast. But with time it will improve.
Hope all is going well. Glad to hear you guys are settling into the new ward nicely. Just remember to take advantage of every opportunity to serve.
Elder Roberts

Monday, August 12, 2013

August 12, 2013

Hi guys,
So ya another week in the mission field down. In fact we are almost done with this first transfer, we are starting week 5. So ya it is starting to pick up a little bit. I remember I emailed Adam the other week and him saying the first 3 months go by slow, the next 3 give you hope, and the next 18 fly by.

So I forgot to answer dad's question in email last week about the area I am serving in. So me and my companion, along with two other Spanish companionships are serving in 1 Spanish ward. Like I said in past emails our area is pretty big, but most of our investigators live in Westminster with a few others living around the area. Things are going pretty good. As for our baptism on the 18 of August we might still be having it, or it might not be until next transfer. The hermano we are working with isn't married to his wife so he has been working on getting married and he needs the correct papers to do so. But his birth certificate isn't the original copy and so they didn't accept it. We are going to work with him tonight to see if there is an alternative route we can take, but most likely he won't get baptized until next transfer. It sucks because we thought we were home free with it, but I guess Satan is trying everything he can to prevent us from making the necessary covenants to experience happiness.
Yesterday I had a new experience. We were finishing up having dinner with a member and we asked her is there was anything we could do for her. She asked if we could give her a blessing because she injured her arm a couple days ago. We agreed and asked who she would like to do the anointing and who to give the blessing. Now just to let you know, me and my companion have given several blessings, but every time I would anoint and he would give the blessing. So I thought that with 3 older missionaries the chances of me getting asked to anoint or give the blessing were small. However she asked me to give the blessing. Oh man I was so nervous and didn't know what to do, or how to do it, especially in Spanish. But in the end it was a really good experience and very spiritual. It was a cool experience to really listen to the promptings of the Spirit to say the things the Lord has promised for this Hermana.
Well that is pretty much everything that has happened so far. This week we have been going through the Plan of Salvation for companionship study especially with the Atonement. My understanding, and love for the Atonement have definitely grown since coming out on the mission. Mostly because it is a testimony builder to see people apply the Atonement in their lives and the happiness they have when they do apply it. I know that the Atonement is real, and that our Savior Jesus Christ performed it for us because He loves us. I am really starting to see how the Gospel can bless the lives of those who will apply the teachings of Jesus Christ to their lives, specifically the Atonement. I am so grateful for the Gospel in my life and all the blessings that come from our Heavenly Father when we obey His commandments.
Love you all,
Elder Roberts

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

August 6th, 2013

Hola Padres,

Sorry for the lateness of the email. This transfer we have zone conference and the transfer that you have zone conference you attend the temple as well. Well this week is zone conference and so they switch the day we have p-day to the day we attend the temple. So instead of p-day on Monday, we moved it to today because we attended the temple. Oh and my the way the movie that we watched in our endowment session was different than the one we saw at the Logan Temple and Provo Temple.

That is awesome that you and the Kunz family are in the same ward. We were really excited when we saw that. It's crazy you guys have to go all the way to Hyde Park for meetings every week, but I guess the Lord works in mysterious ways. I bet Bishop Murdock is going a little crazy with the task of calling new presidencies and other callings. But knowing his work ethic, and his ability to follow the prompting of the Spirit, he will do just fine.

So ya this past week has been good, and hard at the same time. To start things off, last Tuesday and Wednesday I experienced my first companionship exchanges. However I wasn't the one who left our area to another area. Nope I stayed in our area and led it for a day. Ya it was super, super, super scary and it hard at the same time. But at the same time it was a great learning experience, I really started appreciating how much my companion does when it comes to planning and actually talking to people and starting appointments. So ya that was a great experience. This week has been pretty hard though. A majority of our appointments kept falling through and we ended up dropping several investigators. It has been a little frustrating, especially when people don't keep their appointments and we have a great lesson planned for them. But it has been good at the same time, we are contacting more on the street and starting this week we are going to be knocking some doors. So I really believe it will help me with my spanish as well as my nervousness of talking to people. I remember my first street contact; I was super nervous and afraid that my spanish would suck and they would just walk away. But it went all right, I still made like 40 mistakes (didn't conjugate almost all the verbs I used) but it was still good and helped a lot. So this week is going to be great.

I have seen an improvement in my spanish though. My companion is starting to have me teach more in the lessons as well as street contacting. We have a really good system so that we both can improve and find new people. It was cool this week, during one of our daily planning session Elder Kunz said we needed to find a new family to teach, specifically with a mom, dad, and two children. Then the next day we were knocking doors and we found a family just like he said. We weren't able to teach an entire lesson, but we said a prayer with them and they seemed really interested. It was really cool to see how in tune with the Spirit my companion is, and how the Lord puts those who are ready to hear the gospel into our paths.

So we are still almost close with Hermano Alverado on getting baptized. He has set a day to get married on the 13 Aug so we are working with him to get baptized on the 18 Aug. Then also yesterday we visited another investigator, who has been investigating the church for 6 years, and committed him to baptism on the 18 Aug as well. The only thing that is stopping him is he isn't married to his girlfriend, who lives in the same house and is dragging her feet to get divorced from her other husband. But that visit was super good and the Spirit was really, really strong. It has been cool to see how important the Spirit is when we teach and how the role of the Spirit can change the lives of anyone.

Yo se que la iglesia es verdadera y el evangelio de Jesucristo is verdadero tambien. Yo se que Jesucristo es nuestro Redentor y Salvador. Yo se que is por medio la expiacion que podemos regresar a Dios y perdonar de nuestra pecados. Amo el evangelio con todo mi corazon y se que el evangelio puede ayudar todo personas que aceptarlo.
I love you guys,

Elder Roberts