Tuesday, May 21, 2013

What a beginning to the week!

Last week pday was a great start to the week. We went on another two-week shopping trip, so we don't have to get more rides, and someone paid for entire cart!. Then on the way out, someone gave us two trays of raspberries. So it was a good Costco trip.

So first thing off is Frank. He is ok. He found a house and has started two solid jobs. He still isn't smoking or doing anything wrong, but his new house is half a block outside our area. So we called Elder Senn and sent him a baptism! They were pretty happy when we passed off that referral. We talked to Frank a couple times and will still go to his baptism and everything.

Last Saturday, we went with the youth and helped them clean the whole chapel. It's tough to motivate youth to come clean the chapel, so we told them they couldn't play soccer after unless they helped. We got a good turn out and got it done in thirty minutes. It had been raining all that day which made soccer even more fun but a LOT more humid.

My improved lesson for primary and the class we always teach because the teacher stopped coming to church.

Ana and Angel have been ok this week. They are definitely progressing, just not too fast. Angel still reads The Book of Mormon and doesn't really pray, and Ana does pray but doesn’t read. We taught the word of wisdom, and he immediately agreed to try to quit drinking in order to strengthen his testimony of a prophet since he still is unsure. We went by Sunday morning before church and woke him up, and he said they were going to start getting ready, then they didn't show up. Right after the sacrament, we drove to their house and asked why they didn’t come. Their son, Jose, had started to throw up, so they had a good excuse. That day we had been having a zone fast for our investigators to finish off the transfer strong. So that night we went by and invited them to go to Diana's uncles baptism in North Ogden. They packed up their still sick kids and came out to it. Luckily, they had Brother Rubio share his testimony. He came and talked to Ana afterwards, but I think it was just more stressful, because Jose was still really sick the whole time. I felt bad. We asked how he liked it, and he didn't seem to excited, but I couldn't blame him. It was a very, very casual baptism. The MT Lewis bishop still can't resist yelling out his ridiculous jokes the entire time including as soon as everyone said amen after the baptism.

But we went by there last night…just Elder Pyne and I with a newly wed couple in the ward with a baby on the way. The man of this couple is a returned missionary and really likes to take over lessons and teach what he wants, but we wanted to see if they would connect. (He is white, but he served in Spanish, and his wife is Peruvian.)...so Ana and Angel started by saying they didn’t know what to do, because their marriage was horrible, and they didn’t even want to be around each other anymore. SO, the guy member goes and tells them how he and his wife are perfect and have never had one fight, because they live the gospel. Then his wife cut him off and started talking about a huge fight they had and how everyone has problems and Christ needs to help us to get through them. So we are glad the wife came and were kind of bugged by him, but still Ana and Angel didn't seem to listen to her. They never really respond to other members. I am not sure why.

We had talked about boldness earlier that day and usually I don't have a problem being "honest" with people, but I just kind of went for it and said that I loved them both, but they were prideful. I said that I asked them to pray as a family in the past, but they were too prideful and refused to do it. They had tried to fix their problems without the Lord, and they failed....and if they actually did have faith and actually loved their kids (we had just talked about how they were sure they did have faith in Christ), then they would humble themselves and pray as a family at night time. That got to them pretty well and thanks to the Spirit, they didn't get offended and kick me out. We said over and over that we loved them, and we wanted them to be happy, but they were going to keep failing unless they involved the Lord. Elder Pyne reiterated what I said, then Angel said a prayer, and it was AWESOME. The best prayer he has ever said by a huuuuge amount. In the prayer, he asked for help and said he wanted to stay with his wife and his kids. Then we left, and on the way out, we said we loved them, and Angel said we love you, too. He was tearing up, and he is very much not an emotional person. So that was a good lesson. (We had taught the law of chastity and saying positive/constructive things).

So anyways that night (last night), Elder Plowman and Elder Ward were together, because the travelling trainers (Elder Ward is one of them) are going around to each of the companionships in our zone this week. The four of us went to Ogden Pizzaria that night. It was my birthday dinner "on Dad" but then someone paid for us.

We also taught Vanessa and Liz together last night...so progress on them. Vanessa is officially our favorite person in the whole world. She is so cool, she is just soo stressed and sad about how much she has to do that her mom (Liz) won't do as a mom. So we taught Liz last week and showed her a Mormon message and said she needed to be better about talking to her daughter and being better with her kids. This week we have been working on following up on commitments the day after which has been good for us. Vanessa agreed to be more positive and help her mom even if it’s hard. Then they both came to church. Their fellowshipper is Hermana Bluvan. Hermana Bluvan is the best. She is like six feet and has hands bigger than I have and always wears business suits to church. Her 25-year-old daughter and grandson live with her. Her first lesson with Vanessa last week she offered her home anytime to come and take a break and promised her she would help with anything she needed. We went over for our lesson last night, and Vanessa opened the door and said that Liz was asleep so she needed to make her little siblings dinner, and we needed to come back in 20 minutes. SO we called Hermana Bluvan (who was on her way to the lesson) and said we had to wait 20 minutes. Hermana Bluvan came anyways and helped clean their apartment and made the kids dinner while Liz slept. Then her (Hermana Bluvan’s) daughter came and played with the little kids while we had a lesson and Vanessa and Liz (she woke up for the lesson). They agreed to get baptized on the second of June. We showed them another Mormon message (we love using those in lessons now. I have never done it before) and taught lesson 3. Vanessa was so exhausted that she kept dozing off. I feel really bad; she is always so, so exhausted and never stops.

Then we found another couple people tracting.  Elder Plowman and Ward taught two other lessons including a guy who tried to bash, but Elder Plowman shut him down with The Book of Mormon and his testimony (atta boy).

So yesterday, Elder Ward showed up at our apartment with Elder Graham, the other travelling trainer, and they said that the sisters were having a training on Thursday, and they wanted someone to train on boldness. So they asked Elder Ward and Elder Graham didn't want to so Elder Ward asked Elder Plowman and I to go train on boldness with him, and we were so pumped. Then the sisters found out we were going, and I guess they talked to president and didn't want us to come. Would’ve been fun but, oh, well.

Yesterday, we had mission leadership conference. It was pretty aggravating. I guess there have been a lot of zone leaders complaining to President how they want it to be more of a counsel, so President kind of gave us what they all wanted and had two missionaries go up and present an idea they had. The idea wasn't that bad, but they opened it up for feedback and ended up spending an hour and a half of people just saying pointless comments. We got literally no where. President just sat there and watched, and he didn't say it out loud, but I could just tell he was thinking, "See? You can't do this without me." After they got those two missionaries to sit down after an hour of venting and complaining about the mission, the assistants got up and brought up a few issues. They talked about poaching and of course there were like four people that had to bring up those ridiculous hypotheticals, "Well what if....?...then can I teach them?" So they wasted time a little with that...there were a lot of people really annoyed at that point. Then President stood up and randomly said we would take the last hour to go bowling together. Nobody believed him at first, but sure enough, we went.

Last week Elder Plowman and I taught district leader training on The Book of Mormon. We talked about how the purpose of missionaries and The Book of Mormon is essentially the same, and we won't be there all the time with our investigators, but The Book of Mormon will.
District leader training

Anyways, I think that's it for this week. I think it’s for sure now that I will be staying here one more transfer. I think all the other Spanish missionaries would hate staying in j2 for that long since it’s so small, but I am just happy to finally stay put for a little bit. Until next week.
Elder Bassett

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