Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Episode 18: Baptized German!

Hey everybody,

This past week has been great. This past Saturday I had the privilege to baptize German. It was super great because his mom and little brother were able to attend and it was a super spritual experience.

Christmas was pretty good here. After we finished talking to our families we were able to attend the ward Christmas dinner, which was super yummy. It was kinda sad because like 200 people attended the dinner, but only 100 attended church on Sunday. We have a lot of work to do, but we are slowly making progress so all is good.

We still haven't found out about transfers yet. The calls usually happen tonight after our planing session at 9. I'm not sure what is going to happen but I am very excited to see what my next opportunity will be here on my mission.

My studies right now are all in Spanish. Usually I will read a chapter of the Book of Mormon, the New Testament, Chapter 6 of Preach my Gospel about Christlike Attributes, and usually find scriptures to use in teaching the lessons that day. It started out really rough in Spanish but has gotten a lot easier and I have barely looked at my English scriptures except to look up a weird word that I don't recognize.

I haven't been able to ask about the names from Brother Parker. I know the missionaries from the Loperena ward so I will try to ask them this week.

Thank you so much for all of your prayers and support. I am so blessed to have your support here. See you guys in a few months at Mothers Day!!!

Elder Parker
Merry Christmas Skype call

Elder Parker with Elder Reyes - Christmas in Valledupar
Zone Christmas Party with President and Sister Searle

Monday, December 14, 2015

Episode 17: Meeting with the President!

Hey everybody,

It sounds like everyone is very busy getting ready for Christmas. We are getting very busy too. We have a Christmas meeting with the Mission President and his wife tomorrow and then on Friday there is a Christmas dinner for the ward. And then there is a phone call home which is just around the corner. And then transfers will happen right after Christmas too so that's crazy. I can't believe I have almost been in Valledupar for 3 months. I still feel like I just left home.

For the most part, everything is going pretty good here. German had his interview and is ready to be baptised the 26th of December. It's gonna be great because it is the last weekend of the transfer so it will probably be Elder Reyes' last experience here in Valledupar before he is transferred. But German is super excited and so that's great.

Right now we are getting rid of a lot of investigators. There are so many that just aren't progressing so we are starting from scratch with a lot of new people so we are hoping for good stuff with this. One of our newer investigators named Sandri was able to attend church yesterday. It was awesome because we invited her like last Tuesday and she has been super excited for it ever since. We are going to meet with her again tomorrow so hopefully she had a good experience.

Um. there really isn't that much going on here right now. I feel a little bit overwhelmed because I am starting to set really high goals for myself because I know we can get a lot done, but my companion is a little bit hesitant. We aren't doing bad right now, but I just really want to do more.

I hope everything is going well at home. I can't wait to talk to you guys in just over a week.

See you guys soon,

Elder Parker

Monday, December 7, 2015

Episode 16: Mail does go to Colombia!

Hey everybody,

Things seem to be going great back at home. Things here are going okay. We are really struggling to get people to attend church. On Saturday we had almost everyone saying that they would attend, but in reality only two of our investigators did. It's really stressful but we are trying to do our best here.

Everybody is getting ready for Christmas! I'm sad that I missed the ward Christmas party, but our ward will have a Christmas dinner in about two weeks, so we are pretty excited for that. The same day as the dinner we are hoping to have the baptism of German, so we'll see how that goes. Unfortunately, the baptism for Berta isn't going to happen for a while because she started working every day from 8 am to 8 pm, so we never have a chance to talk to her. Her schedule will be better in January so we are hoping that things will start to improve then.

I finally received a letter! This week at our Zone meeting I got the very first letter you sent to me in September when I was still in the CCM. Hopefully that means that any other letters will get here soon. I also got a call from one of the Secretaries that my packages arrived at the office and that they will get here in about two weeks, so hopefully right before Christmas. I do have to pay a customs fee so that is pretty lame but I still have plenty of American money so I am doing fine for right now.

Right now I am studying in Mosiah at the part when Abinadi is talking to the wicked priests. I love it because the priests are trying to trick Abinadi but he always has just these solid answers so none of the priests can accuse him of anything. It is really cool for me as a missionary to think about this because Satan wants so badly for me to slip up, so I just have to focus so much on the Spirit and what it's telling me to say.

One last thing. Today we were in the mall doing some shopping when the song "I'll be home for Christmas" started playing. That was really weird because they used to always play it on the radio with the messages from the soldiers, but it applies here too. Even though I'm lots of miles away, I'm still thinking about you guys and trying every day to do the things to make you proud.There is nothing I would rather do this Christmas than spend my time in the service of the Savior.

I love you guys and can't wait to see you in a few weeks.

Elder Parker