Greetings again from Pilar,
Hello Everybody, I hope all is going well back home. As for me this past week has been an adventure as I´ve gotten used to life in Paraguy. So two fun stories for the week. Earlier this week we had our first rain storm in the middle of the night, luckily it only lasted the night so we didn´t have to walk in it, but when we woke up we had no running water in the apartment because of the storm, no shower, no sinks, toilets, nothing. Luckily for us it was fixed by the end of the day. Hopefully that won´t happen again. Haha, but it was good. Second on Sunday when we got to church we found out that the speakers didn´t show up so our Branch President wanted me and my companion to each give a 20min talk with 5minutes to prepare. Well all I can say is that I tried to take up as much time as possible with my limited Spanish ability, but my companion definatly had plenty of time to talk after me. But the talk itself went well…I think. As for the work, it´s going ok. Paraguay is very different from back home in the fact that people are super friendly here, everyone is willing to talk to you and hear what you have to say, in fact most people (not all) would be more than happy to let us come back many times and teach. While this sounds great, it´s actually really difficult because it´s very hard to discern when people are truely intrested or not. Most people are receptive to the messages we share, but aren´t willing to act, and in the end action is the most important part. As for the church and the members themselves, they are great, but the work is still developing here and we have been trying to strengthen the branch and help the members grow and become leaders. The Branch President has only been a member for about 2 years and is 23 years old. He is great, but it is hard for him sometimes especially being so young. The branch is small, only about 30-40 people attend church meetings, but there is alot of hope for the people here. The work will continue on.
As for Paraguay as a whole, I thought it would be fun to talk a little about the norms of the country. Like I said people are super friendly here, they also live in pretty humble circumstances compared to the U.S. There are lots of stray dogs everywhere, some want to eat us and others will follow us around everywhere. There are also lots and lots of frogs, huge frogs, and monkeys aparently, but I haven´t seen any yet, so I have yet to believe but my companion swears it´s true. Also, similar to Argentina, they have a siesta in the afternoon where most people go home and rest, or do other things. Because of this, our missionary schedule is a little different, so we usually do our daily studys in the afternoon since nobody wants to talk to us during this time. This is fine with me because it means we don´t have to walk around during the hottest part of the day. Also, there is no such thing as dinner here; people usually just eat a big lunch and that´s it. Because of this we don´t take a dinner break either, we just work through it. I thought this would be hard, but it´s so hot all the time that I´m never hungry anyway. Additionally, almost always when we teach people we teach them outside. When we show up to teach someone, the person or family will pull out several chairs and we will sit outside in the front yard and teach the gospel. I thought this would be weird, but it actually seems pretty natural. It´s interesting how many things here, while very different from back home, seem very natural to me, almost familiar, it´s crazy.
Anyway, that´s all I can think of right now. I´m excited for this week and all the possible people that we might meet. The Lord is truly preparing people to hear about the gospel, it is crazy how things work out. For example, we have taught a particular woman a couple of times and she hasn´t been progressing, we were planning on visiting her one last time before we stopped teaching her. So when we went to visit her, we ended up meeting one of her friends that was visiting. Her name is Maria and she is amazing. We ended up teaching her instead and it was great. She had so many questions, but she was so receptive to everything. I don´t know if it will go anywhere but I´m excited to find out. It´s intersting who the Lord will put in our paths.
Anyway, I don´t have any more time, but I just wanted to say that I´m so grateful for this gospel and for my Savior Jesus Christ. He is our perfect example and when we put our trust in him and have faith in him, then we will see miracles performed in our lives.
I love you guys,