Monday, June 5, 2017

Hurrah for Israel

Never thought that this day would come. I remember starting out the mission thinking man the day will never come and now it came faster than I thought. Its pretty hard thinking I have to say goodbye to this pretty soon. 
Just so you guys know, when I started the mission I had a goal. It was to not come home weird like Dustin did (I would say Tyler as well but he left weird so he came home the same. Just couldn't understand him). The way I figured I would complete that goal is by not letting the mission go through me and rather I just go through the mission. I don't know when it happened, but I'm so grateful that it did, that the mission started going through me. I still feel like I'm the same guy as when I left, with obviously the same interests because I miss the gym like crazy, but I know what's actually important now in this life and that really we are in a preparatory state to live with God and our Savior again. I wont risk not getting that again. 

On the mission I've learned so much more about the Plan of Salvation and about everything else. My testimony has shot up like crazy and there's no convincing me otherwise that these things aren't true. I know who I can trust and who is always there for help when I need Him. Maybe you have heard the saying that your strongest convert on the mission should be yourself and I can 100% say that. 

Being given the opportunity to share the gospel with all my brothers and sisters these past 2 years has been a great privilege. It hasn't been easy and many times I wanted to hit these people because of their hardened hearts, but I have really come to love them. Just the thought of not seeing an old woman walking with her cane and a big sack of who knows what on her back makes me want to cry. I love Ecuador and I love these people. 

To finish off I want you guys to know that I know that this church is true and the only true church of Christ. I know that the Book of Mormon is true and will bring anyone closer to God and Christ by reading it and applying it in their lives because I have done it and have seen the difference. I know that Christ lives. I know that this is His work and that nothing will stop it from going forward. I love my Heavenly Father and I love His Son. Hurrah for Israel. 

See you all next week, 
Elder Welch

The cake :(

Monday, May 29, 2017

"Tengo un ejercito de hijos"

So the week went by pretty fast. Its going good here in Tena.
So like I said last week we had transfers. My companion is honestly one of the nicest companions I've had on the mission. Hes super great and we get along pretty well. he doesn't make me trunky or anything like my last one would so thats awesome. The only problem that I have noticed is he has super bad BO. I don't know how you tell someone they need to buy deodorant haha but we will see if he buys it when the money shows up on wednesday. I hope so cuz it's like sitting next to that indian kid in class bad when we teach a lesson sometimes... I still love him though
So this week we decided to pass by Rafael. I told my companion a couple of his stories and he was pretty animated to go meet him. So last night was the day and he put on a pretty good performance. My companion asked him "do you have any kids" and with like this straight stare at us not even smiling or anything says "I have an army of children" I just started laughing cuz I was like what in the world but Rafael didn't think it was too funny. He did give us some pretty good food that he made with his friend that he had made in the street 30 minutes prior to us showing up. 
Also another story. Those BYU nurses frustrate me. They literally called us and asked us to go translate for them. So we go one morning and they were like why are you guys here? you should be working like we don't need your help. So once they told me that at the end I said why did you call us then? Like we literally canceled lunch and all of our morning citas to come here because you guys called saying you needed help. So frustrating but at least the physical therapist that I was translating for was super nice to me. He needed a lot of help. Mom btw here is another back tool that you can buy if your hook isnt getting it done. Look up the tuner by Dr sherik (I think thats his name) 
So i'm pretty pumped you could say. Yesterday in branch council, still am not used to saying that, our branch president said something that stuck to me. He was telling us about an interview he had with his mission president while he was on his mission. His mission president said "if a junior companion gets desanimated whose responsibility is it to get him animated again?" (excuse the spanglish I just honestly don't know what word you use for desanimated) so he responded back "the district leader is responsibly". He then kept asking and if the district gets desanimated up until the mission president. When He asked him whose responsibility is it to animate the mission president he didn't know what to say. Then his mission president said "its no ones job to animate me because I didn't come on the mission to be desanimated". Its so true. You don't go on a mission to get bummed out over things you can't control. It's a part of the plan. No matter what happens, as long as I am diligent in the work, I wont lose any blessings if people reject me or the church attendance was that big or any other thing that can upset a missionary. The best part is that the church is still true. Just like in the attribute of hope it says that you will always be enthusiastic and animated if you truly have hope. The goal this week for branch conference is that every member, including the babies, is responsible to bring a plus one to church. However, the missionaries are a plus 6. If we can reach that, we will have an attendance of like 100. That would be so cool! Gotta have hope though! 
The church is true no matter what happens. Im doing great, my airplane tickets showed up, the financial secretary told me how much I will be getting because im going home. Doesnt feel real pero tiene que dale. 
Im gonna sprint through the finish line. I love being a missionary

this is for Jake Fisher

This super good cake and cheesecake they sell in my zone leaders sector. Its so good

My companion told me today that before the mission I had a manly face and now I have a child face

Monday, May 22, 2017

"BYU Nursing Program Saves the Day!"

So it was a pretty good week. I consumed a lot of pizza and shrimp this week so it was cool but man do I feel icky girl. Currently eating some cookies while writing this... CANT STOP WONT STOP! 
So this week we were able to go to Baños and do meaningless divisions. I say meaningless because my zone leader told me "i'm not even telling president about these divisions. 1. its week 6 and 2. you go home in 3 more weeks so i doubt it even matters" So literally meaningless but they were way fun! After we taught some peeps we went and did an all you can eat. Im proud of myself cuz I took down 14 pieces but i could have done better but they took too long to bring the pieces out. mi parcero aka my companion, took down 11 and started throwing up in the street so it was actually pretty funny. I was laughing pretty hard because it was literally right in downtown Baños in the middle of the street. 
Also some member called us this week and goes "elders, i want to take you guys out to eat. Come to Choquitos." So yeah we went there and MAMA it was a rich place. Im sure it wasnt that rich but anywhere where there isnt plastic chairs you think is a rich place but she did feed us like kings! She told us to get whatever we wanted and then after that made us buy another plate and then after that said lets go get ice cream. In total she spent like $130 on us. Maybe it doesnt sound like that crazy but keep in mind Ecuador is A LOT cheaper than the states. I was actually full those two nights which hurt so good. 
We taught Rafeal. Sadly he didnt accept fechya but when we invited him he started talking about this little boy he gave soup to. Hes a funny guy. He just doesnt get it
So to explain the craziness of sunday, this is what happened. So we walked in typical like 8:45 and there was just the branch presidents family the other missionaries, and like one other family were there. So we are starting the meeting at 9 with a total of like 25 people. The out of no where a super tall white woman walks in. Then another. Then another until about 35 byu students were in the congregation. It was honestly crazy! Supposedly they are BYU nursing students and the are here in our sector helping out with a group called charity. So this week we are going to go and help translate for them. Should be interesting because my medical terms in spanish are sort of limited. 
We also had changes last night. My companion is just moving to the other sector in Tena and my new companion is Elder Navia. Hes from Bolivia and has about a year in the mission. Should be a super fast change... We also got the list of all 350 less actives yesterday so these next 3 weeks will be consisted of finding those lost sheep. 
I love this work. Its awesome being a missionary! Thanks for all the love and support. Im doing great!

Heres me in that super awesome restaurant 

Heres me with a Llama. Its a lot cooler than any cat

Heres me eating pizza 

Heres me with the zona Oriente ( i know its super small. Its about less then half of a regular zone) 

 my hard core piano performance I put on for the zone

my comp and I outside of Rafeals house after a lesson. It was raining super hard so I didnt want to get too wet cuz im without an umbrella so we waited it out 

Monday, May 15, 2017


I ran into Rafeal today, the crazy cross eyed investigator we have that I was telling you all about yesterday, while he was working. He started screaming "WELXSH, WELXSHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!" I didn't hear it but my companion did so we went and talked to him for a bit and he told me the reason I didn't hear him is because in the states it makes a lot of noise. He´s doing great though. We have a cita with him this week and hopefully he actually understands something this time and also hopefully we get some more funny stories from him! 
It was awesome to talk to you all yesterday. A little weird to bare my testimony in english but I was happy to see you all and to know that you are all doing good. Especially cool to see Goldie! 
Anyways, I don't have anything new to share but the Gospel is true, I know what I'm doing is very important.
I love you all! Thanks for all the love and support.

Elder Welch

I too had a Hank the water tank water bottle. A dog jumped on me and scared me and I dropped it so it broke

If you see where the clumper of lights are in the background thats where I was. We walked up that big hill and I sweated and they werent home so I wanted to sit down 

Thats the amazon river

Monday, May 8, 2017

"Know, Do, Become"

Pretty good week in Tena. Only one day this week we went without a lesson so thats how you know it was a success. Also we had an asistence of 54 yesterday so thats pretty ballin! 
So last night the missionaries in the district slept the night over at our house because we had to leave at 3 in the morning to get to Baños for a zone activity. So one of them fell asleep at like 9:30 and so i ran and jumped on his bed and he literally flipped. I think I scared him like hard core cuz he threw his journal and his pen across the room and then I thought he was gonna punch me in the face. So basically I learned dont wake people up from sleeping by jumping on their beds. Its still pretty awkward between us now...
So last night we had interviews with pte and they went super well. I always learn a lot from him. I'm gonna miss these interviews. So anyways I talked to him about personal study and how he learns so much and gets so much out of the bible. I was asking how I could learn and get more out of my studies and if I had to learn German to read the bible to get the true translation. He then told me dont worry about it too much. He then quoted the line upon line scripture and said the Lord will guide us in our studies and help us learn. What we have to do is apply what we know. He then quoted saying "you need to know, then do, and then become" So i invite you guys all to apply that to your lives. You have to really apply what you are learning in your studies so that you can become more like our Savior. 
Sorry the letter was short. hope it made sense! Hopefully we can have a super hyphy skype this sunday:) 

I got the whole back row to myself traveling this past week. Decided I would take a selfie

This is probably a dream location for dustin. The virgin that looks over Baños

Monday, May 1, 2017

"yo soy tranquilo pero también soy una bestia"

So this week was pretty good. On Sunday last week the branch president said in branch council "it's going to be a good week" and I started thinking "well it sure can't get worse than the week we just had".  He was right, it was a lot better. 
To start off, if you are ever debating about getting a haircut from a trany, dont do it.  You might be wondering why would I ever go and get a haircut from a trany? Well I didn't know he/she was a trany. I thought it was just an ugly woman. Then I sat down and she asked me how I wanted my hair cut and I just about stood up and left cuz of his or her voice. Not only that she was a trany, but she also did a craptastic job. Hopefully it grows before I get home so i don't look like a pinhead. 
Then at lunch I decided I would eat half of a chicken. So i told the guy to give me 2 plates of a 1/4 of a chicken and he looked at me all confused and said but your friend just bought a lunch?... So i looked at him and basically said "I know what i'm about". I took that down like a champ. (Btw if you don't get that reference, watch parks and rec) 
So the week was awesome! Started out with lots of lessons and lots of new investigators! YEEEEEEEEEEEEEEAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA BUDDYYYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!! It was actually awesome. Not to mention one of the new investigators we taught owns a clothing store and she gave me a free tie. You know I sucked up to her the next lesson and wore the tie. She so came to church this sunday too so that's a first here in Tena for me!!!! We also were able to get the branch president to come out with us this week so it was awesome even though we literally, i'm not exaggerating at all, didn't say a word in 3 straight lessons. Its okay though because all 3 were to less actives. 
So you remember the investigator that dropped us and I said I would follow up with you with what happened? Well this is what happened. I called him all week and he never answered.  He too was in finals. So yesterday we knocked on his door and I basically said what I told you all I was going to say. Then I bore my testimony of the Book and my companion bore his testimony. Im not gonna lie, I thought he was going to let us in, but he just said thank you and i'll read the Book this week. Im happy though because we have officially done all we can with him until he decides to listen again. 
So on saturday we did a service project helping a family move houses. I dont know who took more advantage of my muscles mom or my companion because I carried just about everything heavy (the fridge, washing machine, all the couch parts, etc.).  The worst part of the service project is I got the harder side every single time. Not cool. 
Its going to be a good week this week. My crock game is still going strong so thats how I know. I love being a missionary! 

PS- so we taught a less active and he started like whipping his kids with an extension cord for apparently "bad behavior" when they weren't doing anything actually.  He started yelling while whipping them "yo soy bien tranquilo pero también soy una bestia" It will now probably be one of my new threats along with daddy forgot to feed the children. 

yes that was probably the most uncomfortable I have ever felt in my life. Almost just got up and left but I got scared of being whipped as well so I was on way good behavior.

Monday, April 24, 2017

La Chamba

The "chamba" took a big hit this week. Adam taught me that word. He said thats what they called the work in Mexico so I thought it was more fun to say chamba than obra so I do. Ill explain later why it took a hit. 

This week we had zone conference and it was pretty good. So president starts out the conference saying "we have good news and bad news. The bad news, Elder Christofferson came and visited our mission this past monday. It was short notice and only invited the missionaries in quito. Good news, we are going to spend the next 30 minutes talking about it." I just about punched someone in the face. Stupid emergency changes. They did a pretty good job talking about it. He left a blessing on the mission however I forgot my notes in the house so I forget exactly what the blessings were. Still feel a little bitter. 
A couple highlights of the week. 1. my sandals broke so I decided it was a sign that since it was like my 3rd pair, that it was time to buy crocks. They are just the greatest. They also look super swaggy. 2. I started making the mama de los batidos. I call it "la mama". Its basically just a ton of fruit, eggs, avocado, milk, vanilla, and the secret ingredient, pony malta. I like drinking it while I have my crocks on.
So like I said, la chamba took a hit. We went 3 straight days without a lesson. I wanted to die because it was so hot those days and you just stand outside of every house crying and knocking for like over 5 minutes because they told you to come and they lied. Not only that, just about every contact denied us too. Needless to say, I passed out at the end of every day. Then to top off that we got denied every contact, yesterday, the ONLY investigator that we had, decided to drop us. Like excuse me? I drop you you dont drop me. After that happened I told my comp I need to sit down. I sat on a stair for like 30 minutes cuz I didnt know what to do anymore haha. That night I told the zone leaders what happened and they said "are you going to go teach him again?" After he said that I didnt respond for like 10 seconds cuz I literally almost said "you idiot I just said he said I dont wanna listen anymore. Why would I go back?" After the conversation I was doing some pondering and I thought of the districts when the investigator "jinx" thinks she received an answer and that the mormons arent for her. The missionaries didnt give up on her. Anyways, yeah so I decided since he studies in Riobamba, like 5 hrs away from Tena, that I would call him and invite him to read the book before he decides to drop us. I will inform you next week on the outcome.
So on saturday we did divisions so i went to the other sector in Tena. It was awesome because we had a lesson. But it was also great because the guy we taught has been looking for an answer to his question about what church is true. He said he has been studying with the testigos and adventistas and catholics and everything. So his mom is adventista and he lives with her. So we were teaching him and then his mom comes in right when we are starting the first prayer and she just gets so mad. She like starts throwing a temper and everything haha. It made me think a lot though in Acts 5 verses 41 and 42 because she literally hated us because we were teaching the truth. Ive been thinking a lot about that experience including yesterday on my half hour stair sit. We are getting rejected left and right right now here in Tena. Its way hard and it honestly makes the days so long. But I am grateful that everyday I get rejected representing the name of Jesus Christ or as the scripture puts it being counted worthy to suffer shame for His name.
Well la chamba continues. At least if the day is hard, i get to go home and put on my crocks. It always puts a smile on my face. So does putting on my placa. 

I found a bamboo log and I tried to cut it with my machette. But because I was so tired I actually fell asleep on the ground and my comp took a picture of me sleeping

Just a couple dollops of tuna. That tuna was straight gold. 5 bucks!