Monday, April 24, 2017

Episode 82: Great Opportunity to Improve Teaching Skills!

Hey everybody,

Things have been going well this past week. We have been working like crazy to help the people to attend church. And well, even though the majority of the people we had visited didn't attend church, it was still awesome because Jhon Jairo, the kid I talked about last week, attended church with his mom. We were super excited to see them there and they have just been really excited with the church as well. 

Something really crazy happened yesterday. We had talked with the Ward Mission Leader about having the Mission Cordination Meeting in the morning before sacrament meeting, and so we got to the church about 45 minutes early to be able to talk with him. But just as we walked in to the chapel, a sister came up to me asking me to play the piano for a special musical number. But the problem was that I didn't know the song and it wasn't a hymn so I had to learn the song really fast. It went okay so I has happy with that.

Well, things have been a little difficult with my companion. He is really great and all, but he is very quiet and I have to do everything before he starts to do it. But I have been able to learn a lot of patience so that's good and it has been a great opportunity to improve my teaching skills.

Well, the week after general conference our mission president gave us the goal to read all of the book of mormon in 6 months, and because I don't have 6 months, I decided to do it before I go home from the mission. This time I decided to focus my attention in all of the ways that the prophets or other people recognized the spirit and how they were able to recognize it, because I feel that it would be something very important to be able to help the people we teach to recognize the many ways to feel the spirit. I am currently reading in 2 Nephi and it has been very interesting to see the many witnesses that Laman and Lemuel received and that they continued being wicked, when Nephi from the beginning had been willing to obey.

As to the call for Mother's day it will be on Saturday.

I hope you guys have a great week!

Elder Parker

Monday, April 17, 2017

Episode 81: Lots of Fish and Sweets!

Hey everybody,

Well, things have been going okay this past week. The work has definitely been a bit slower because of all of the vacations that people are taking for Easter break. And here unfortunately the parties began Thursday and didn't end until yesterday so the few people that were in their homes weren't very interested in listening to us.

Here the big tradition for Easter is that they eat lots of fish and different types of sweets. We only ate fish like 2 times in all the week, but it was still really good.

About the baptism, the girl's name is Geinis Yepez. We are still working with Keila but she has been out of town all week so she probably won't be ready to be baptized t
he end of this month but we are still trying to see how soon she will be ready.

Also this week we have been finding some great new people. We were able to visit a young man that the missionaries had visited one time before and we had a great talk with him and he accepted a baptismal date and was very excited to attend church. Unfortunately, he wasn't able to go so we will have to keep working there.

I hope you all have a great week and I'll talk to you soon.

Elder Parker

Geinis' baptism

Thursday, April 13, 2017

Episode 80:New Companion and a Baptism!

Hey everybody,

Things are going great here in Colombia. Today we had transfers and my companion left the area. I am still here but now with a new companion. His name is Elder Dávila and he is from Peru. He seems to be a great missionary so we'll see how everything goes.

Well, on Saturday we had a baptism. It was a young woman from the area of the other elders who left and so we ended up being responsible for everything. It was really great and even though we didn't do all of the teaching it was still a great experience. We have another investigator that we received from them named Keila who is preparing for baptism at the end of April. And the members who live in that sector are also very supportive and are frequently giving references so we have a lot of work to do.

Aside from that, everything has been very normal this past week. And word is that Elder Christofferson will be coming next week to talk to us so I am really excited for that. 

I'll keep you guys informed with everything that is going on with our investigators and everything else.

Have a great week and I'll try to send pictures this next week.
Elder Parker

Episode 79: Investigators Struggling!

Hey everybody,

Things are going well here in Colombia. The conference was so great and I loved all of the messages that were shared. But I have to say that I was not at all expecting the news that you gave me. It's really sad to know that Grandma passed away but it makes it so much better to know that we can see her again.

As to what is going on here, things aren't going too great with our investigators. We were talking with Ruggelis and he told us that he really has no interest in knowing if the Book of Mormon is true or not. We tried to explain its importance but he wouldn't listen. In the end we had to let him go because he didn't want to progress. Even though it was really hard for us, I can only imagine how much harder it was for his mom to hear him say that but she was very supportive even in sharing her own testimony of the Book of Mormon. I hope that in the future he will be able to change his mind.

Antonio is doing fine, but our struggle is that he works Sunday mornings. I really never imagined how much of a struggle it would be for some people to keep the Sabbath day holy but here it is one of the hardest commandments because it is such a large leap of faith stop working one day of the week when your family literally only eats if you work every day. It's something that we will have to keep working on with him.

Before seeing dad's letter, I had no idea that there were any problems here in Colombia but we just received a letter about a special fast Sunday this next Sunday for the victims of these struggles. Please let me know anything else that you are discovering.

Can I ask a favor? My companion would like a little information about studying in BYU. He is from Brazil and is interested in knowing about the options that exist to help students attend from other countries. If you could send me any information about that we would be very grateful.

Thank you so much for all that you do. I hope that all are well at home. Please send my love to Granddaddy and tell him that he is so special to me and that he will be in my prayers.

Have a great week,

Elder Parker