Monday, December 12, 2016
So tomorrow officially starts my last 6 months of the mission. Its crazy that its here. I've been planning for this day since the beginning. Its been a lot of crazy eating the past 5 days trying to get in all the food I wont be eating for the next 6 Months. So what the sexy 6 is, is when you diet and work out like crazy so you come home lookin like a G. My companion only thinks ill complete on the work out end but I'm determined haha! LESSSSS GOOOO!!!! No more pan de chocolate or the polaca!
So its been a pretty rough past couple of weeks. This is the second week in a row without finding a new investigator or EVEN a lesson to an investigator. We have absolutely ZERO investigators right now. So my first change here, we had half of the ward. My second change, we had the whole ward. Now I'm on my 3rd change here and once again, we have half the ward. So the sector boundaries didn't go too much in our favor cuz we left everything in the other half. We are working hard and contacting but I believe where we are lacking is in following up with the contacts. Its easy to talk to people, write their number down, then forget you ever talked to them haha but we are working hard to improve on that.We are teaching a good number of less actives and a couple that i love! They are so awesome but so difficult sometimes. Its hard to respect their agency but its a good patience lesson when they explain why they wont come back to church. The mission no longer is focusing in the less actives. We are only focusing on finding and baptizing then repassing the lessons. What we are mainly focusing on is the finding then we will worry about the other 3 steps.
Anyways the work is going good! We had a couple baptisms while i was off the internet which is awesome so if i have more time Ill send you guys some more pictures. I also went to the basillica today which is a really old catholic church. I couldnt take pictures in the coolest room of gold with like 5 virgin marys. However, i did go on top of the building and about peed my pants it was so scary. thought I was gonna die bc you know me heights aint my thing but i got up to the top. Also I took a cool picture that if you zoom in its blurry bc a fellow elder never turned off flash but its of me in the priest chair with the virgin mary behind me. Then the guards came and told me I couldnt sit in the chair. So the picture will have to do for now!
Thanks for the letters! i love you guys and I hope you are all doing great! We found a place to do skype so Ill be talking to you guys in about 12 days!!!!!!!!!!! WOOOOOOO!!!!!!!
Monday, December 5, 2016
Hey sorry its been awhile but things are going good here in Ecuador! It was a rough past change a lot of things to keep me busy which is good! Somethings that's changed is that the first presidency said that we have to have a zone conference and interviews every single change now. Normally it was one change conference next interviews. So I had an interview with president and it was awesome. I talked to him a lot about why its so hard to be exactly obedient. He talked about how well you get to know someone in 2 changes and i was like really well. He goes now how long was the pre earth life and I said an eternity. So he said Satan was able to get to know you VERY well. That's why temptations are so hard to resist because he knows your weaknesses because of that time. I havent thought about it that way and it really did help me out. It didnt really change how hard it is to be perfect but it did help me not beat myself up all the time with the imperfections that I make.
Well In the zone conference we had a cool training by the assistants about how short our time in the mission is. They added up all the time we sleep, eat, study and all that other stuff including the time we are actually proselyting, which adds up to 6 months. We spend more time in the mission sleeping then we do actually working. Thats what really caught my attention. The next news I got in the interview was I asked president when he goes home cuz I knew it was near when I go home. He said he goes home on the 4th and I said oh so my last interview ill have a new president and he said no. your last change is only 3 weeks. Because changes are on the 2nd of July and he said it wouldnt be fair to make the new mission president do all the new changes. So i now come home on the 13th of June. My mission is now 6 weeks and 3 days short of 2 years. That card that the assistantsmade of the mission of it only being 6 months of working is now a LOT smaller amount of time. The mission is passing by super fast and its crazy. Never thought 2017 would come but here it is! Im excited to work super hard in my last 4.5 changes i have left! The mission is the best. I love you guys talk to you all next week!
Monday, November 7, 2016
Matt informed us that he won't have access to the internet for the next couple of weeks. So he won't be able to send or receive emails for that period. You can write him at this address:
Elder Matthew Welch
Mision Ecuador Quito
Calle Robles E4-151 y Avenida Amazonas
Monday, October 31, 2016
Haha so this week was pretty good. My companion is super funny and so we have been having a good time. So since my comp is a lot taller than me I tell them he's from the states and they believe me. I kinda stopped doing it because after like the 3rd time of being raged on for my spanish I was like yeah this joke isn't funny anymore. Its because I say hes from the states and they respond saying but your spanish is really good to him. So the joke isnt funny to me anymore. But I told someone that my companion played in the NBA before he came on the mission and they believed me and then my companion said the joke of what the NBA stands for (see subject) But things are going great here.
Well in news of whats going on, they closed down the other sector in my ward in emergency changes and so we have the whole ward to our selves. Its a little intimidating because its a VERY big sector with A LOT of recent converts and A LOT of work to do. We are trying to figure out a good balance between the work in the sectors but hopefully we can get that all figured out. But because the hermanas got taken out, we had another baptism! It was honestly pretty crazy. Her name is Magaly and I have taught her one time. It was pretty cool though to know that she was getting baptized because she knows that this church is true and not for the missionaries. She may have not the strongest knowledge of the church but she knows its true so its a start. We will be working with her a lot and her sister accepted baptism but not a date. Hopefully we can get things going a little more there.
Well family and ya else, its been a good week. I drank a lot of mate, learned a lot about soccer history and uruguay history, but my testimony got stronger this week. So its been a good week. Ill be talking to you all lates. Love you all
Picture of Daniela (sorry its super blurry. Not my fault haha)
Picture of Magaly and her baptism (Idk why she's posing like that)
Since you guys went to disneyland, I learned how to make chocolate and we made disney chocolates because im still hurt
Monday, October 24, 2016
It was change day. It was a good 6 weeks with my companion elder chavez but it was for sure the quietest 6 weeks of my life. I can only hold a one way conversation for so long. The changed passed by super fast though! I stayed in my sector and I recieved a giant as a companion. Hes about 6 foot 6 latino from uruguay. You know what that means. We gonna be drinkin mate all day yoo. He unpacked his things and had about a 5lbs bag of that stuff haha. Time to learn to like it. Its awesome though. Hes super out going and funny so we are already having a good time.
In return, with this past weekend, we baptized the very last what was in our investigator pool. We literally have nothing. I was kinda nervous for this and a couple baptisms almost got pushed to this change but they didnt. We have a LOT of work to do. A lot to get going. Im excited though because its going to give me more of a chance to improve my finding abilities. Contacting, or tracting, doesnt really happen here. If you talk to people walking down the hill, they either ignore you or just get mad. If theyre walking up the hill you can talk to them but those are pretty hard to find because they are all on the bus. I honestly dont know what we will do to find the news but I know its gonna happeen because its gotta happen or ill lose my mind haha.
Something that helped me this week was I got really bored the other day while my companion was sending in a letter that I started rereading a lot of old letters that I have. I read one from Tyler that I think was his second letter to me on my mission. He said that even though he wasnt necesarily having the greatest time on his mission, he always put that he's living the dream. He said you gotta learn to train your mind. So it got me a little animated for this change. Because I knew that this change was gonna be a LOT of work and a lot of difficulties but if I learn to train my body to my mind, it'll all be good. Just gotta keep those positive thoughts and success will come!
Thanks for the letters. Talk to you lates!
Monday, October 17, 2016
So some crazy stuff is goin down! To start, the mission wont have or receive any book(s) of Mormon(s) for the next several months. Its gonna be pretty difficult to help the new investigators progress the next several months when we only have 3 copies in the house. Thats a book of mormon a month if my math is right. Its that supposedly the distribution center in the states doesnt have any copies of the new version in spanish so we have to wait for them to print it out, then send them to us. By new versions I mean that the book of mormon I have now, is out of date cuz they changed a few words in some verses in the spanish book of mormon...
Next crazy thing, we got these books about "how to use technology safely" and they gave them to all the missionaries in the mission and said its to be studied to help you after the mission. I think they are lying and that ill be getting an ipad woooooooooooo! I hope so but honestly, id rather have a bike than an ipad...
On saturday we were supposed to have a baptism. It was the baptism of Daniela. Jose's little sister. She was FINALLY excited to get baptized it was awesome! So friday we went to their house we talked to the mom saying hey at this hour we are gonna come by and go to the church with Daniela and with Jose. She was like yeah thats fine. What we didnt know is that she told Daniela that night when we left that she couldnt leave till she got home and then they were gonna go down together. So we followed the plan that we set the day before and so did Jose and Daniela. So about 30 minutes before the baptism started the mom calls me yelling at me like a psycho latino that you would see in some crazy mexican telenovelas. So i made my companion talk to her. She went pscho wanted to talk to Daniela and she yelled at her made her cry then told us we never told her we were gonna go down with her. We said yeah we told you last night and she said but you have to call and tell me when you got her and say shes with you. Well we didnt know that and so Daniela was still crying and so the bishop talked to her then Pte Christensen was at the baptism too and so he talked to her and told us we should wait to baptize her cuz shes too upset to be able to focus on the spirit. The worst part was that the bishop told her she wasnt prepared to get baptized now the mom wont let her. It was a BIG mess! MADNESS! Hopefully within the next several weeks we can get this all taken care of and she will be able to get baptized!
Other than all that news.. this past week we had a meeting with president and the assistants talked about something that really made me think. They talked about the phrase "returning with honor" they applied it by saying we all know what it means, but it can be applied to more than just going home after the mission with honor. It means going back to your house every night with honor. Every time you walk in the house at night you should reflect and think if really, you came home with honor that day. It really does make you think a lot about your diligence. If really you gave everything you had that day. My new goal is to have a personal evaluation at night to see if really im coming home with honor. If not, what did I not do and how can I make sure I do it the next day. Everyday times running out and its crazy how fast its going. I gotta make sure im doin all I can in these next months so not only everyday I can go home with honor, but when the time comes, I truly come home with honor knowing I did all I could with what I was given.
I love you all! Thanks for the love and the support. I gots pictures so yeah! Ttyl
baptism of the familia moreno!
My favorite activity of my mission so far! As you can see it was a monster!
Monday, October 10, 2016
So last night I ate probably one of the grossest things of my mission. I ate pig intestines with a nasty side of something that looked like meat but tasted like crap. Honestly I was trying so hard not to gag and every time I put that nastiness in my mouth I hid it under my tongue and waited a sec then gulped down some liquid without chewing it cuz it was full gross! Seriously the worst ive eaten until then was cow utter and let me tell you Id rather eat cow utter and fu with a side of beef balls than eat that grossness again haha. My companion said he really liked it though... Lts are weird sometimes.
So this week we heard a capacitation that I really enjoyed. This Elder is one of my good friends cuz hes a super funny chubby latino and just honestly makes the mission fun! So he was talking about the mission horario and was talking about how we need to follow the rules cuz if we show up to the house too late, we dont plan, when you dont plan you say youll do it in the morning but then if you over sleep you dont plan and then your day is garbage just wondering all day in the streets just looking to get into a house. He then shares the scripture of Abraham having to sacrifice his son. He says, now if that angel would have woken up that day and gone "naw im tired im gonna sleep a little more" then shows up even 2 minutes late, Isaac would have died. So when ever you dont want to wake up in the morning, maybe you kill an Isaac. Dont kill and Isaac. It was the greatest capacitation ive heard in a long time haha not only because it was super funny the way he tied scriptures in, but he made it super awesome that you just wanna be more obedient with everything!
So other than all that jazz, it was a pretty good week. We had 2 more baptisms of the moreno family and it was so awesome to see them get baptized! They bore super strong testimonies at the end and even the 13 yr old jordy started crying in his testimony. The spirit was for sure present at that baptism! It was a little hectic though because the bishop was gonna baptize jordy but he called us 15 minutes before the baptism was gonna start and told us. I already lent my pants to one of the investigators getting baptized cuz they dont even fit me anymore. So I had to run home, grab extra clothing cuz coach put me in and it was game time. So I showed up about 5 minutes late and our mission president was there haha. I was like ahhhh no because he is huge on starting everything on time. The point is it was crazy, we started late, but the spirit was still there and we now have 3 new members of the church! (1 of the sisters)
I started restudying a talk this past week and I focused on Elder Nelsons because everyone told me that was their favorite. The biggest thing I loved from that talk was when he said "only latter day saints can have joy under any circumstance". It really made me think because its raining here nonstop which makes it a lot harder to work and im still sick but im happy. Its so weird. Because I have a better understanding of my Savior now, I understand everything He did for us and it makes a lot of things that happen in the mission seem like nothing. You just have so much love for Him, that you love doing what He would do if He was still on the earth. I also loved when he said "missionaries dont leave their homes to increase the number of members in the church. They do it to bring joy to the world!" I have receivedso many blessings and im honestly happy. Im here to share it with the rest of Ecuador!
I love you all and thank you for all you have done for me! ill talk to you all next week!
PS. I forgot my cord to my camara so i cant send pictures. Ill do it next week and btw I went fishing today and it was awesome. Wasnt no hot dog catching catfish, but it was good enough!
Monday, October 3, 2016
Man I cant express to you all how much I love conference. Just like Elder K. Brett Nattress I hate to admit this to you all but, I was not listening when I shoved my head between the cushions to listen to conference. I seriously feel the urge to go back over the past like 19 yrs of my life and listen to every conference talk given. However as awesome as conference is I tell you what, I am so excited to only have one left on the mission and not have to worry and stress all day about trying to get to watch it in english. Also super excited not to be thrown into the secretary´s office with other gringos to listen to it haha. Ill write more about conference latuh on
Unfortunately, the rat killing did not happen this week. I would say im disappointed but ive been pretty sick all week and killing rats probably would have only diagnosed me with the plague so its all good. The sickness, its going on day 6 right now. Nothing serious just bad headaches and a super sore throat to the point where i sleep every other night because one night i dont sleep cuz im coughing all night and the next i do because im just so exhausted from working on 0 sleep. I tell you what, im not gonna miss these experiences but its something that truly makes you grateful.
So to start out I would like to talk about seriously how inspired these leaders of the church are. Within the first 2 talks, my question was answered. Its something I already knew the answer to apparently but it really hit me right in the good ol bosom. The trick to missionary work is love. In my last letter I talked about service. Putting the needs of others before yours. In those first 2 talks by President Uchtdorf and Elder Hales the parts that had the most impact on me were the parts where they talked about love. You can do all the service you want in the world, but if you dont do it with love it wont change you.
However, the talk that stood the most out to me was by Elder Rasband. They really saved one of the best talks for the last. Something that I loved was how he said "we cant forget our personal spiritual experiences" It really was something so obvious but something I needed to hear. He talked about how sometimes we give our children names so they wont forget. The other day I was watching Monte del Señor, I dont know what its called in english, but its about the building of the salt lake temple. In the movie, President Woodruff says "ive always kept a record ever since the prophet joseph smith said we should everyday. No matter how tired I am, I always do it." So when I heard the part about "we cant forget our personal spiritual experiences" I thought about my journal writing. These past several weeks Ive had the most spiritual experiences just sitting on buses and thinking and reading a lot but at the same time, my journal writing has been the worst its ever been my whole mission. Not only that, but ive decided I need to change the way I write in my journal. Ive normally just been keeping a track of everything I have done that day so after the mission I can remember everyday, but now im changing it to what President Eyring said in a talk not too long ago about how have I seen the Lords hand in my life and also to my personal spiritual experiences. Somedays on the mission you just are on fire and nothing slows you down, then the next your just there working because you know you should which isnt nearly as enjoyable. With that talk, I determined its because im forgetting my personal Spiritual experiences. I know that if we dont forget those experiences, being able to endure to the end will be so much more enjoyable and easier because we remember the love of our Savior and have felt the spirit testify to us of truths. I invite all of you who dont, to keep a journal of those personal spiritual experiences. If you feel like church things sometimes are a chore, its because you dont remember those experiences enough to know that those are blessings.
I truly am so grateful for such inspired leaders of the church to guide us in these last days. The church is true! I love you all and have an awesome week!
BTW a new investigator started giving me all this christian music. The subject is the best one ive heard so far of like the 1000 songs hes just giving me haha
1st i found kolbe. Hes really skinny now but its good for him. Maybe he wont die from diabetes this time
would you check out that view
Monday, September 26, 2016
So this week was pretty good. Besides the fact that the door opened and my bands flew out and whipped me in the back while I was working out, it was a solid week.
Something I love about my new sector besides the chocolate bread (btw they have a very good pineapple bread too I discovered) is that we do a lot of service. For example we have been helping out this old member with his little plot of land. Taking a machete to it and taking down all the plants. Then burning it all and while all the smoke is in your face and eyes, cleaning it out till there's no green left. That last part wasn't too much fun. But this week we got ourselves a crazy service planned. We are gonna go rat killing. I ain't talking mice, I'm talking straight rats. This member has a chicken farm thats filled with huge rats so we gotta go kill them now... with our feet! haha I'm so freaking scared for this service but it'll be awesome to say I've done it and send you dead rat pictures. Stay tuned!
Then he asked me about my companion. I said idk what i need to do to help him improve. Im still trying to get used to him. (my comp is super quiet). He says part of that is that you need to look at other missionaries especially with your calling and look to see how you can help them improve. He says once you start doing these things you'll understand what it means to forget yourself and go to work.
I talked about to him a little more and he finished the interview and thanked me and looked at me straight in the eyes and said "elder Welch, you are a completely different person then you were when you started the mission" I literally almost started crying. The mission has changed my life. I told myself that I didn't want to come home weird like Dustin and I didn't want to ask to extend my mission. I was holding back as a missionary. Now I don't wanna come home. Besides being so tired all the time, I love this. Jose´s baptism was the most spiritual one I've had yet! The kid got baptized and just gave the biggest hug to the member that baptized him. He then bore such a very short but powerful testimony that this church is true. The spirit was so strong! I was so happy! The gospel is the source of our happiness. Ohio State football is a close second, but truly i couldn't stop smiling that whole night. He's a new 18 man that's now apart of the true church and preparing himself to help others do what he just did. Convert to the Lord.
Thanks so much for everyone of you that wrote me. I love you all and I'm super happy. As Tyler once said a lot of times "Im livin the dream!"
Jose´s baptism! Great kid!
the picture with the kid by me is the familia moreno. We are just working with them helping them receive their answers and then its their turn!
Monday, September 19, 2016
Man the "winter season" in Ecuador really is something else let me tell you. I am so happy this is my last time in this season in Ecuador haha. You leave the house, sunny its like perfect no clouds nada! Then you leave lunch and its just the worst thunderstorm you have seen. It just straight down pours like a freaking hurricane and just thunder and lightnings all day and so yeah.. you get drenched. Especially since I don't have an umbrella and my shoes had a huge hole in them i was getting extra wet. One day it even hailed. So running away from the hail to shelter, I was put to think about one of tylers stories. He said one of his companions would walk in the rain instead of run because he says you get just as wet. I say that is false. I have experimented and have decided that it is false. I have an umbrella now so im a little more prepared for the week.
So the work here is good. We have a program and its awesome and all. Its just the whole program is about to get baptized this weekend. After that, we got nothing. Ive never felt so non diligent and diligent at the same time in my mission. Im used to working everyday all day and now we have a ton of more things to do so your numbers definitely take a bit of a crash but you show up to your house just as tired. My sector as always, IS ONE BIG HILL! This time its no joke. Its just a hill. The only flat part is right when our sector ends. On the bright side there is this chocolate bread that is sooooooooooo good here that has frosting on it. MMMMmmmmmmmmmm yummay that stuff is good! I try not to eat it though everyday because i don't wanna get fat. Some how i still manage to get skinnier and skinnier and idk how. I still consider myself yolked though to an extent. To finish off about my sector, we got a couch inthe house. It may be a couch that has no cushions and not soft at all but i still sleep on that and it is my best friend. Hate all you want mom i wont go to bed im takin the couch.
Like I said we have a few people that are going to get baptized this week. So im choosing to talk about one. His name is Jose. Hes 18 years old and hes been through a lot! I still dont know him perfectly, but my companion has told me everything to be able to see the repentance in this young man. After going through fecha after fecha, having a baptism everyone there waiting for him and him not showing up, to him now being 100% certain of his baptism is awesome. Truly the gospel changes lives. My calling is so awesome. I get to see people everyday accept and use the greatest gift given to the world, the atonement, and see it change lives. See it change the way people act, look, and even their appearance in their face. Its the greatest to watch people truly find happiness. Something ive been doing this week is plopping myself down on that awesome couch and i found a bunch of Christmas letters. Dad take notes here. So this one missionary that was here, in his stake they did a Christmas book. Every missionary writes about their mission and shares some stories and their testimonies. So there is about 200-300 of these letters in the house. I dont know a single one of them, but they have given me such a spiritual boost! Seriously i read all of those letters in 3 nights. It made me reflect on my mission and ask myself questions about how much have I really grown on my mission? How have i seen the atonement work in my life and the lives of others? And the fact this week when i was teaching Jose and had the feeling of I dont wanna go home ever, is an indicator to me that this is where i need to be and that the gospel of Jesus Christ really does bring true happiness. This is real fun being a missionary, walking hills not so much, but teaching and baring my testimony yes. I love you all! I hope you have an awesome week! Thanks for everything! Talk to you guys later.
my last zone picture in ambato
Elder Pricito! With our candy ties on. Its his favorite song too!
Monday, September 12, 2016
I feel pretty confident in my german spelling so hopefully its right. Anyways, we just had changes and I'm out of Latacunga! After 4 changes there i was ready to leave but it was pretty hard to say goodbye to some members. The bishop sure was happy though that I left haha I dont know what I ever did to him. Anyways, the familia Avila was super hard to say bye too. I almost cried and they gave me sooooo much crap including my favorite spoon that i always used over at that house haha! Definitely made my suitcases a bit heavier. Im now back in Quito in the zone Chillogallo. Should be a lot of fun and a lot of growing. My companions name is Elder Chavez, from Peru. He has 2 more changes than i do in the mission so hopefully he can help me progress more and especially improve my Spanish!
The baptism of Tatiana went super well! Oh and of Tiger haha. That kid is crazy though! He has a testimony so thats what matters. Anyways, easiest baptism of my life done but it was awesome. The hermanas had 2 baptisms too so it was awesome to hear all the testimonies at the end of the service.
My favorite part of this week was finding a couple new investigators. Especially the Familia Maya Taco. They are super awesome and willing to change. I think they just need a little push and a little more help until they start doing it on their own but they are all super humble and it was incredible to hear their story. We started introducing ourselves at the beginning of the first lesson and they just start talking about all these family problems that are going on. Normally you might think, well thats not good, but when you have the answers to all these problems it kinda just puts a smile on your face and you think thank goodness im here. Although i wont be able to see them progress, I know that if they do their part, an answer will come and that they will be blessed for it. The gospel of Jesus Christ truly does bless families and I hope one day they come to experience that!
Well thats basically all I've got for this week. Things should be getting pretty crazy and I'm excited to see what happens! I love you all! Thanks for the letters. You all rock and i miss and love you all! Take care and talk to you next week.
Monday, September 5, 2016
hahaha so one of my past companions elder Furner wrote me and I thought you guys might think this was funny. He went home about 3 changes ago and now studying at BYU. So anyways, I always teased him that he is going to have to take what he can get as far as his wife goes because i was just making fun of him and it was really funny he would get super defensive but he ends his letter to me with this hahahaha "Your favorite, best, awesomest, most attractive companion that you have ever had, and the one that is going to choose whatever wife he wants because they all want him" I still doubt it though.So this week was awesome because we had sort of a miracle happen. So we received a reference from a recent convert. Her daughter was going to get baptized in Guayaquil but she moved into latacunga and she already had the interview and everything in Guayaquil. She came to church twice here and then she got her interview this past Saturday.NOW, SHE AND HER SON TIGER ARE GOING TO GET BAPTIZED THIS SATURDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!
So this week was pretty crazy with one of our new investigators. He owns the papi pollo restaurant that i love here in latacunga. And since I've been here for 4 changes, me and him are super good friends. He's so awesome. Then we decided to finally make the move on him and try to start to teach him. I tell you what i felt so nervous haha! I didn't want to ruin the friendship that we have or get banned from the papi pollo that i love so much. So what i have to say to you guys is that you cant be afraid to open up your mouth and share what you know to be true with the friends you have. It may be hard, and you may think a lot is on the line, but I promise something good will come out of it! Who knows, maybe they'll end up accepting fecha like my papi pollo dude luis. Be brave and the Lord will bless your efforts.
So I had a couple of spiritual experiences that have happened to me this past weekend. To start, baptismal interviews are the best and they are just so spiritual! Its awesome getting to hear their repentance story and why they have changed and then to hear their testimony. It for sure strengthens mine!
Second, Yesterday was pretty rough. I was pretty stressed with some dumb stuff that i shouldnt worry about and it was just hard. Then in sacrament meeting to finish we sang i believe in Christ and i was super close to crying but i held them back. Its so awesome my life right now. Literally all i have to worry about is telling people they have a loving Heavenly Father that has given us a Savior. Its awesome thats all i do. At times i forget my purpose and i just wanna go home or just go to LA fitness and just be the tank i once was, but then something spiritual like that always snaps me back into why im here in Ecuador. Life is going pretty good. To finish the day, i was outside brushing my teeth on my patio and i was just looking up at the stars. I then thought of a quote that one of my old zone leaders shared with me
“God left us the world unfinished for man to work his skill upon. He left the electricity in the cloud, the oil in the earth. He left the rivers unbridged and the forests unfelled and the cities unbuilt. God gives to man the challenge of raw materials, not the ease of unfinished things. He leaves the pictures unpainted and the music unsung and the problems unsolved, that man might know the joys and glories of creation.”
I just felt the spirit super strong in those few minutes i was outside. We truly do have a loving Heavenly Father. At times we question things that He does, but He has a purpose for everything just like how He did with how the world was created. The mission is awesome guys!
Have an awesome week! I love you all! Take care talk to you later!
shoes are finally giving out:(
my cat friend named chestor
Monday, August 29, 2016
So I'm sorry but I'm super short on time again. Luckily I don't have very much to report on because this past week there was a district leader conference in Quito, zone meetings and divisions, and to top it off a zone conference with president. It was awesome though. I got to see a lot of old companions and I learned a lot. Now for more craziness, we just did a zone activity so I'm in ambato now i have to go back to quito in like 30 minutes because tomorrow at 8 i have to renew my visa. Im getting pretty old! Im super drained though from a billion buses I've taken and I'm 100% drained on my apoyo haha. Its okay apoyo comes soon
Well something I've learned that I've really been lacking on is my planning. I have always known its important but anyone that knows me knows im a little tooo laid back and it hasn't really changed a whole lot. Im in the process of changing that though. as a mission they placed goals that we should be accomplishing every week. Like the key indicators. Man am i pumped to get working and to reach those goals. Now you guys in brazil and missions like that may not think 6 lessons a day is a lot. But when you get 3 lessons and like 10 contacts in a day everyone is congratulating you on that day. The assistants got us pumped testifying that if we really do eficaz planning at night, we can accomplish that. I will put it too the test and return and report. anyways like i said, I'm super short on time ill try to get a letter off to everyone of you that wrote me! Love you all! Have a great week and talk to you later!
me and Quilotoa
A less active family and me are about to rescue a dog
I'm smiling super weird cuz I just got out of a 8-5 in the tarde meeting. Im tired
old los chillos crew
me and my mijim elder espinosa lo maximo!
I had to stay in a random closed sector house in ambato for the zone conference and it was an old hermana house and I found out i fit in them jeans haha
fun zone activity playing olmypic games. I was on team Ecuador and we lost. Not too proud of myself
Monday, August 22, 2016
So me and my companion started a band this week. Its called "White Latinos". We have a few hits. So he plays the uke and I just sing into his MP3 player that has a microphone. Our album is I hate veci because i swear I'm like super close to just flipping out on her she drives me insane! The ZLs are fighting for us to change houses so that's whats keeping me calm. haha anyways, maybe I'll let you guys in on some of our songs in the future!
So I just got back from Quilotoa! Its wayyyyyyyyyyyyyyy beautiful! I don't have as much writing time as I normally get because the bus was super slow. so 1 if my letter to you is short, don't hate me ill make it up next week. 2 if i don't get pictures out due to time, look up Quilotoa on google and you'll be amazed. FOR SURE have to go back with those peeps that wanna come with me!
So this week was a little rough as far as work goes due to my companion getting sick. We would leave for a lesson and he would be like dude, we need to go home NOW! it was pretty funny especially since he had to go poop in a cup haha! Hes on a lot of pills now so hes getting better. We worked with Alex a couple times this week! Hes doing great and last night we were in a noche de hogar with a new investigator and Alex bares his testimony I swear I was super close to crying. It was so powerful and I know that David, the new investigator, felt it! I love working here! I'm getting pretty tired of walking up and down these same streets and stuff, but when you have lessons like those and investigators like him its just awesome and makes all the other hard times worth it!
Sorry this letter is a shorty. Ill write you a longer one next week. This week ill only be working in my sector half day tomorrow, then and . I have conference in Quito so i have to leave a day early and then another zone conference then divisions so its a little crazy but I'm excited! There will be a lot to be learned this week! I love you all! Thanks for the emails. Talk to you all next week!
I'm so gonna take my future wife here and pull the "she thought Quilotoa was beautiful but I thought she was more beautiful" card on her. BOOM! children fed!
Monday, August 15, 2016
Another awesome bumper sticker I saw haha
This was a little difficult but that's okay I've been warned that the mission isn't the easiest thing in the world. Anyways I've had a lot of heart breaking experiences this week that literally i just cant take bc they make me so upset.
1. This experience happened about 30 minutes ago. I went up asked the guard to a bank if i could pay the light bill here and he said yes so i waited in line for about 45 minutes only for the guy to awkwardly look at the paper i handed him and say what is this and me explain it to him and he goes yeah we don't do this. I wanted to hit that guard in the face. not cool.
2. This next experience is actually one that really made me upset. We taught this new investigator and she listened and all that. Then at the very end of the lesson when we were getting ready to invite her to baptism my comp said something about the book of Mormon and she went LOCA! COMPLENTAMENTE LOCA! She was like i cant believe in another book. Okay why not. Bc the bible is all there is. No, Christ said there are more of His sheep in another part of the world this is them. NO i dont believe you. Thats okay you can go pray about it. No i wont i like my church. Have you received an answer that your church is true? no. Will you pray about our message then? no. Will you pray about your church then? no. Okay hermana whats gonna happen if you don't pray about your church or ours and what we are teaching you is true and you didn't even want to pray about it? Idk but i just don't believe in that book and I don't wanna pray about it. That is basically how the last 20 minutes of the lesson went. It literally broke my heart to see such a sweet person go so cold hearted and not even want to pray about what we were teaching. I can only imagine how Heavenly Father feels when His own children reject Him and His son. Its really quiet frustrating and sad.
3. This kid my home boy, my home skillet, home slice home digity, Alex Vargas is the freaking man! He is only 16 years old and this kid is just awesome! Over the past month or so we have been teaching him I've developed such a love for the kid! (not gay love) He is so awesome! Like any one would if they did everything we invited them to do after each lesson, he has received an answer and knows what we are teaching him to be true. He literally is the coolest! The only sad part is that his parents wont let him get baptized. They believe hes not old enough to make that decision. Ive begged Alex to let us talk to his parents and his parents say they have nothing to talk to us about. That we can continue to teach him, he can come to church, he just cant get baptized because hes "not mature enough yet". Man Alex just started crying in the lesson when he told us all this and was like I know its true they just don't believe me that i know. He then said "once I turn 18 I'm going to get baptized" Mom, dad, i promised him i would go to his baptism . Please let me haha. But he also goes to all the missionary prep classes that our church has. The kid is a stud! Love that kid!
The cool experience of the week was yesterday. We went to go give a blessing to a less active that has been sick. I told my comp to do it because he never has and it was awesome. Hes 82 years old and hes been sick with pneumonia. He hasn't walked in a month! My comp blessed him with the ability to go to church next week and to reactivate himself. After the blessing my comp goes, "i said in the blessing that you would have the strength to be able to go to church again. How about you walk around the room." He was super hesitant and so i booted in and said "hermano do you have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ?" He said yes. So i said "you cant have even a slight doubt that you cant walk around this room. Have faith in him and we will do it with you." He was so scared so we said it to him again about not having doubt. Then we helped him up and watched him walk around the room. First time in a month he has left his bed and walked. That was honestly such a spiritual experience to us all. He came back to his bed and sat down and just had this glow in his eyes. There is a reason the first principle in the gospel is the faith. Without the faith, there is nothing.Such a powerful moment. Makes all those other heart breaking experiences i mentioned above so worth it in the mission to have experiences like this.
Thanks for all the letters y'all have sent me! They are awesome as is you. Love you all! Talk to you all next week!
My new glasses!
These fun toy motor cars that my comp and me had a race in around the mall. As you can see in picture 2 I won. He ate my dust
Monday, August 8, 2016
So this week was awesome! Im not gonna lie, the mornings were a little bit rough, but i went hard on the workouts to get my mind off things and let me tell you what. I is gonna be ripped!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Its been a great learning experience and I'll tell you why.
So I had the opportunity to read my patriarchal blessing this week and some things really hit me hard. I wont share them but its had such a positive impact on me. Its given me a lot of comfort and helped me more fully attempt to grasp the idea that God has in store for me. Ive been reading "leales a la fe" and its been helping me a lot too. Talks also are getting me pumped up to work! If you are ever down and you don't like it, listen to a bombin talk by either Elder McConkie or President Brown and they will make you feel like a champ and you is happy. Also dustin told me one time that I shouldn't be sad because sad spelled backwards is das, and DAS not good. Believe it or not, its helped. I would say the thing that hit me the hardest was the song "have I done any good" by Alex Boye. I was listening to it and it just hit me super hard!
Have I done any good in the world today?Have I helped anyone in need?Have I cheered up the sad and made someone feel glad?If not, I have failed indeed.Has anyone's burden been lighter todayBecause I was willing to share?Have the sick and the weary been helped on their way?When they needed my help was I there?
The reason I love it so much is because I bring a message of happiness as a missionary. The last line "when they needed my help was i there?" Hit me super hard! Its like I can be sad or I can do my job and my calling and help others be happy. I need to be there for others and I need to help them out and the Lord will bless me after the mission. Grasping this concept has made me cheer up so much. I am really grateful for everything that has happened in my life. I know the Lord has put me through trials bc He knows I can handle them. I love my mission!
Thanks so much for all the letters and prayers and consejo! Its made me feel very loved and im happy now. I would honestly say this is one of the happiest times I've been on my mission. Give everything to Him. Don't fight anything and you will be blessed with happiness! This church is true and you all stay golden!
Monday, August 1, 2016
Well yeah this week has been a pretty crazy and a rough one that's for sure. Yeah to start out, we got emergency changes and I stayed in the sector and elder espinosa left. i was kinda bummed bc i was really ready to leave, But my companion is awesome! He jut came back on the mission about a week ago and so hes got about 5 months in the mission. He's really an awesome guy and im going to learn A LOT from him this change! His name is Elder Gonzalez from Texas. People think hes latino but i don't see it haha
Well with a pretty big trial that just hit me, I was forced to reflect more on my purpose in the mission. I remember about 2 months ago I fasted and prayed super hard to receive comfort in the plan of God. Yeah, it's going to be hard, but bc of that time I have my trust in Him and He knows WAYYYYY better than I do. Ill be great! Thanks for all of the Support!
So this week we only got to visit Alex one time. Hes doing great now! Hes been praying and reading and so he went and talked to his parents and said "I've been thinking and praying and i want you guys to know i might changereligions" after a few questions he said he feels good doing what we invite him to and he wants to know a little more about his answer first. He still hasn't come to church but this week he will! I have faith! Hes awesome
So next we got Kevin Baca. That malcreado is funny but he's starting to frustrate me. He's not doing anything and won't come to church. We taught him about as spiritual of a lesson as you can when you are teaching in the street and my companion went HARD! He testified and said " We know that if you come to church tomorrow, you will have your answer" So powerful even if the spanish was off. It was amazing to be present. Unfortunately, he was scared of an answer and didn't come. We will see what happens with him!
Well yeah, sorry this letter is kinda short. I hope you all are doing great and having a fantastic time! Thanks for all the prayers they are much appreciated. Time to get even more lost in this great cause! "despues todo lo que se ha dicho, el mayor y más importante deber es predicar el Evangelio" I love you all! Talk to you later!
Monday, July 25, 2016
So this pastwas a pretty good day! I was really happy about what we could get done in our short work day. So Alex accepted fecha for the 13 and so did Kevin. Although that doesn't sound like that big of a deal, that's the first time someone in our sector has accepted fecha for about 4 weeks so i was pumped even though they both fell . Other than that, our ward did a show de talentos. With how typical of Ecuador it was, they ran out of talents after about an hour so they just started calling people out. They called some people out and they left to go practice in another room. Then they called on an hermana who sang primary hymns in english and spanish. Then my name creeps up "welch, welch, welch, welch!" So i played it cool. I went up talked to the DJ and got things rollin. The intentions were to out-do myself when i did "ill be there" on the cruise. I was planning to bring high-pitch matt back. I didnt quiet out-do myself on the cruise, but i did bring the house down and got chanted for an encore. I brought JBiebs to the Latacunga building. I brought the pitch, i brought the moves, I even brought Ludacris with me when I dominated "baby" by JBiebs. My moves were killer. I am officially known as Elder Bieber in the ward now.
So as far as work goes its going ight. We are working super hard and not seeing very many fruits but I know they will eventually grow on this tree that I'm planting here in Latacunga! So last week dad and dustin wrote me about alma 21-24 i think it was of Ammons converts. How they built there testimony in Christ and they never fell away. So I decided I would capacitate on thatin the district meetings. We are all taught at the beginning of the mission to baptize converts, and how do we do that? we teach and preach and testify of Christ and invite others to follow Him. So an activity we did is we went through lessons 1-4 and counted the number of times it mentioned Christ or one of His nicknames. It was a TON! I forgot to write down the exact number of times in my agenda but it was a lot. We then did practices having to teach a principle in a lesson and use His name the same number of times predicad does. I think it was a really good practice to help us remember our purpose and to help us have converts in Christ not in any other reason!
A couple other things happened this week that I loved. So I was reading alma 60 and was reminded of a capacitation that the APs gave in a zone conference one time about cleaning our vessels first from the inside and the outside will be pure too. I really loved it. Ill keep what i learned to myself this week and invite you guys to read it and share something with me about what you learned from it! Another thing that happened was my comp got pretty sick one morning out of no where. So after studying for awhile and getting pretty bored after a couple hours, i went through all my pictures from where im at now, to the very beginning. It was so weird first of all to see how much I've changed outwardly, but also to see how much happier I look now in my mission then i was at the beginning. Its might be hard for you guys to see the difference if you went through my pictures but the mission has honestly changed my life. I always had a testimony, but not on a lot of gospel principles I do now. I understand so much more and i still have a lot more to learn! Tengo más deseos ahora a perseverar hasta el fin para que yo pueda llenar mi silla en el reino celestial con todos de mis queridos! The mission is awesome and I'm super excited to see you guys ! Im excited to see you all and how much you've grown and to show you all how much i have! Thanks for all you guys do! Thanks for all the letters. I love you all and will talk to you next week! maybe in a new sector also because we have changes this sunday!!!!
I also cut my comps hair and I messed up big time and just had to cut it all to a 0 hahaha. I thought I was qualified to cut a black people type hair but the fade is too hard haha
The long awaited moment has come to an end! I finally ate guinea pig and I'm okay if I don't get it again!
This is what the leg looks like