Monday, April 16, 2012

April 9, 2012
This has been an incredible week. God has really been giving us miracle after miracle. My senior companion, Elder Wagner, is on his last transfer, and rather than being trunky has decided that he needs to fit in every last ounce of work he can, so we've been working from six thirty to ten thirty (and since they're zone leaders and have to put stuff in the computers in the mission office at night sometimes we work until eleven) without stopping. It's exhuasting, but it's great. We set three more baptismal dates. Which is especially incredible because this area hasn't baptized in two years, and now we have it set up to baptize weekly for the next month, plus several others who are so close. As far as the Tornados go, we kind of didn't take the tornado warning too seriously (sorry mom), and didn't notice that the president had told us all to "seek shelter" becuase we were working rather than checking our phone, and ended up seeing several miracles. The tornados were far enough away that it didn't really affect us. THe cool thing was the hail that was the size of golf balls to base balls. WE have some saved in the freezer. All of the cars in our apartment complex, and almost our entire area recieved some form of damage, mainly lots of dents on the roof and the hood, but we were in a corner of our area, and didn't find out about the hail until after, meaning our truck was completely undamaged. It was really cool. President has now sent out rules that we are required to seek shelter if any list of bad weather occurrences happen. So don't worry mom, we'll be safe. Another cool thing is that, since we whitewashed in, and the elders before us don't seem to have been to hard working, we started from literally nothing, but this area has become one of the most productive. There are so many people ready to here the gospel here, it's great. Also, my companions have broken my fear of speaking on the phone by only writing my name on all the cards they give out with the phone number, so everyone asks for me, and for making me call everyone. After several days of some very misunderstood phone calls, including a couple just hanging up and Elder Wagner or Ward calling back, I can officially have a phone conversation in spanish. So there's that language barrier down. The gift of tongues is really real, spanish is not a problem here, and now I can focus a little more on being a better missionary and teacher. My comps are great for that. Another random fact, I can read portuguese (even if I can't spell it). It's very similar to spanish in spelling. We had a portuguese BoM with us and I opened it up and we could actually read it, it was cool. Well, I'm pretty much out of time, gotta go. Que les vaya bien, love Elder West!
Also, we got caught in an easter storm out tracting. No one is home on easter until late in the evening, so we basically had to fill all of our appointments that didn't show (hispanics punch a lot more than white people, but are a lot more willing to listen in general if you are talking about God or Christ). We got caught in a really long thunderstorm that rained so much the whole time. When we drove home some of the roads felt more like little rivers. My comp who has been out 23 months said he has never been so wet in his whole mission... It was really fun though. There was one bolt of lightning that was really close, almost at the same time as the thunder, that was so loud it set of a couple car alarms. It was cool. But we met some cool people. I think people decided that if we were going out in this we were either crazy, or we really believed what we were teaching was true. One guy even came back and asked us to come by after he had told us we were crazy, it was funny. But out of time, love you all! Cuidanse!

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