The majority of my week was traveling. Traveling with the Cifuentes' is always enjoyable because we have a good time chatting and I can just ask President all the questions I have stacked up in my brain. I've said this before, but I love conversing with people like President. He's so wise and I love how our conversations always turn into counsels pretty much. It's a blessing to spend time with him as I learn so much. Through those "counsels" we were able to make a few plans to improve the mission and help our missionaries progress. The conferences were fun and it was great as always to see old mission friends and meet the few newbies that came while I was in Tandil. I'm missing like 5 missionaries that I'll meet this week before I can say I know everyone in the mission personally again. It's cool being able to say that and helps me as a leader to better serve when I know my "sheep." It was a bummer to not work in our area as much as we wanted, but we were doing what we were asked to do. The Lord blessed us anyway with a few great highlights and experiences that I'm excited to share.
Elder Valle and I, by the beach
First, we had an appointment with our investigator Lucrecia for the first time this week, and brought Gianfranco Tidei (the missionary I saw arrive in the airport from his mission about 4 months ago - p.s. our new neighbours are the Tidei family after moving a week ago, we love it). We got there and, long story short, Lucrecia said she wanted to be baptized, set her own baptismal date, AND told us that she no longer desired to finish her sleeve tattoo! My jaw was on the floor. What a blessing and an answer to our prayers. It never ceases to amaze me how God can somebody's mind/heart. So anyway she will be baptized January 7th. She's super ready and knows so much about the gospel.
Second, the Laspina family confirmed their date to be baptized. The 31st of December at 4pm. New Year, the baptism of my beloved Laspina family, AND another brother married... big day :) We're so excited for them, such good people and they're so ready (I guess that applied to the Laspina's and Rauren).
Third. President asked us to go help the Elders from Coronel Dorrego (Way and Duncan) along with the Stake President and some counselors go do "divisions" in a place called Monte Hermoso (the beach I went to last year with my zone in like October or something). Well we picked up the Elders from Dorrego and got to Monte Hermoso around 7, and we found out that the Stake President was actually organizing a sacrament meeting there. This next transfer we will be opening Monte Hermoso up as a new area in the mission, so they are trying to help provide the sacrament to the few members that are out there right now in an effort to prepare them spiritually for the mission work to come in that city. Such a beautiful place and it was fun to run out in divisions and round up some members for this meeting. (We also drove past the beach on the way to a members house during sunset... I think that was a Christmas present from God cause I about drooling from the view of those golden tinted waves... mm). We ended up starting pretty late, around 8:30, but enjoyed a beautiful sacrament meeting in the home of a member there who was baptized in Paraguay. I was amazed by the fact that the spirit could be felt just as strong, if not stronger, in the humble home in a beach town as in a big chapel. I felt the "Christmas spirit" so strongly as I led our tiny congregation in "O Come All Ye Faithful" for the opening hymn and smiled as I thought about how weird but special that whole night and situation was. It really felt like we were lighting the world. What a cool experience. Afterwards, because of how late it was, we stayed wtih Elder Way and Elder Duncan in Dorrego. Super fun being with them. Elder Way is a cool guy and a long time mission friend, and Elder Duncan is part of the group I brought in the last time I was AP, so it was awesome to see the progress over this last while.
(left to right): Elder Duncan, Elder Way, Moi, Elder Valle
I'm excited to have both a Holly "Jolley" Christmas as I chat with the fam next Sunday ; ) and a "White" Christmas as well, dressed in white to bring others unto Christ next week.
Strive to light the world always and this next week especially as we celebrate the birth of our Savior.