Semana 88: Every Day Is Like My Homecoming In Ephraim
Well I've been in Ephraim for a week now and time has flown by. I will send you my address in another email mama. We live with an elderly couple named the Christiansens. Right after I left Ephraim last time the missionaries moved into this house and I was jealous I never got to live here before and now I'm here! It is definitely the nicest place I've lived on my mission and the Christiansens are great people. We have a little gym to work out in, we have the whole basement to ourselves, we watch the Preach my Gospel DVD's on a big projector, I don't freeze at night because it is central air, and I can take a shower that is longer than three minutes without getting a cold shower. It is really a nice house.
It has been funny being back in Ephraim for several reasons. The first day I came back we taught a man named Mauricio in Manti. Elder Brown and I were teaching him over one and a half years ago! It is neat to see how time and life can make people realize the need for the gospel. He still needs to get married but he acts a lot different than before. It has shocked me how many people remember me from before when I was here. I thought I just went unnoticed as the quite greenie but I guess not. It has been a week of laughs and talks of "old times" this whole week. The big difference this time in Ephraim is that we are now covering the English wards here. I feel like I'm becoming a true Utah St. George English Missionary because we are mostly teaching children. This coming week a girl named Sadie is getting baptized, the week after a boy named Nick, and then a boy named CJ will be getting baptized so we should stay pretty busy.
Jumping back to Monday, it was a bittersweet day for Elder Earle and I. It was good in the sense we were leaving Beaver for areas that had more work but we really like several families such as President Robinson and his family, the Marshalls, Guzman’s, and the list just goes on.
Thursday was a good day. We had DTM and I really like all the elders in our district. We all seem to get along really well. I found out almost every area is teaching someone Hispanic so we are going to have to work all that out. :) The Mt. Pleasant elders are even teaching a man I taught when I first got here so I think we will begin teaching him again. Other than teaching our investigators everything is good. haha We taught Mauricio again and it went great I hope he really does have the desire this time to do what he knows is right and true. He came to church so that is a good sign.
Friday was a really good day, we invited two people to be baptized and they accepted. We went to the institute to use the bathroom at night and there was a group of high school students there for debate. I recognized a few of them from Beaver so I went over and said “hi.” I started talking to a guy named Steven who I knew from when he took a Bishop's daughter to Homecoming while we were at the Bishop's house. I asked him if he was a member and he said no (but I later found out he was baptized when he was younger). When he told me his last name is Wayman I remembered Elder Wayman from Spanish Fork area that served in our ward. I remembered a pic Elder Wayman showed me from when he was in high school and he had long hair. Steven also has long hair and so long story short, Elder Wayman is Steven's Uncle. It is such a small world! Then we had dinner with a family called the Alders. They lived in Kaiser about 8 years ago. Turns out Uncle Brent was their stake president. The Mormon bubble is so small! :)
Saturday was a really busy teaching day. We went to Moroni and Fountain Green and spoke with a lot of former investigators. The hardest thing about Hispanics is that the Catholic church is deeply rooted in family tradition and their culture. Most of the time people will not listen just because being Catholic is a tradition and not because they have studied the scriptures and prayed to know if it is true. The highlight of my week was going to the Allred farm and out there, shoveling lamb droppings was MAURO! I can't explain it but he looked different from the last time I saw him. He smiled so much more, he talks more and it was just amazing to see what receiving a remission of sins and the gift of the Holy Ghost did to him.
Sunday we went to 4 wards including the Spanish branch. Even though there are very few people in the branch and it has shrunk since I was here, last my heart definitely lies in the Spanish Branch. It felt like coming home after a long vacation and everything just felt familiar. Everything just came full circle. I think the best part is that I now can communicate with everyone as where before I struggled a lot. Well I think that's about my week in a nutshell. Hopefully we can keep doing well. I have a feeling I'm going to be knocking a lot of familiar doors this week to see if we can find more people who are ready to hear the good news! I love missionary work so much! I'm livin' the dream! Vaya con Dios!
Dios es amor,