Well first of all HAPPY BIRDTHAY MOM (tomorrow)!!!! Oh that´s so fun! You´ll have to tell me all about what you guys do, I want to see pictures and send me a piece of cake if you could too would ya? No, I´m just kidding.
Well a lot of things are happening this week. It´s the end of my first transfer, which means I´m not a greenie anymore!!!! Not that I really ever felt like one, but it´s good to know that there will be missionaries younger than me and that I have some experience under my belt. Also it´s a transfer, so lots is changing...including my companion...which I´m not very happy about, but whatever the Lord needs me to do. Hermana Jarvis will be going north to a city called Benidorm and I will be gettting a NATIVE companion!!!! What?!?!?!?! Oh man, I don´t know what that´s going to be like. Her name is Hermana Cerna and she´s originally from Peru, but she´s been in Spain now for a while. She´s only been out for like 3 or 4 transfers so she´s fairly new which will be interesting, but good. At least she´s good at the language right? Needless to say, I probably won´t be using very much english for the next few weeks. I´ve heard she speaks/understands a little english so that´ll be good, but it´ll still be a change.
Alright, now for the big news that relates to the title of this email. November 2nd now has two very important things. First, my sweet daddy´s birthday, and second, MY FIRST BAPTISMS!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAHHHHHHH!!!!!! Hahahahah, oh man, you guys, they are so cool! It´s this really sweet mom (Edita) and her two kids (Wilbur, 10, and Dayleni, 8) and they are from the Dominican Republic. We found them through some members (that´s honestly where finding is at. That´s why it´s being stressed right now so much to the members, because probably around 90% of good investigators are references from members) and they´re just super sweet and humble. Honestly so many people here are. They aren´t kidding about the whole "bad economy" thing here. That doesn´t even scratch the surface. I can´t tell you how many people I pass daily who are just out on the streets begging so that they can try to get by. It breaks my heart.
Oh! So something weird that I found out about last night, the way they do missionary farewells here in spain is just strange! There was one last night for a missionary in our ward and man oh man. So they do it on sunday nights, so it´s not part of sacrament meeting. They begin with "testimonies" which basically just turns into an hour long brag session about the missionary. Then they have a slideshow, then the whole family speaks, then they give the missionary a blessing (which I guess sometimes they just set the missionary apart right there in front of everyone) and then the missionary speaks, and then the bishop speaks, and then everyone eats. So it basically takes like 2-2 1/2 hours and it´s crazy! I´m so glad we don´t do that in the states. It´s not the way I would chose to do it at all!
So what else can I tell you...Dad I know you wanted to know more about our investigators, so maybe every week I´ll tell you about one of them. So someone we´re going to go visit after we finish emailing right now is Lorena. I don´t know if you remember her, but she´s the one we found in the park that started crying after we shared a prayer? Anyway, she´s so sweet! We taught her a lesson 0 (the book of mormon) and then we haven´t visited her for a few weeks because she´s been super sick, but we´re finally going back tonight. She´s a total Joseph Smith case! She´s been looking for the right church, and she´s getting baptized in her other church this month apparently, but we´re determined to change her mind and to sway her towards us instead.She has a little daughter who is 6 and she´s married, but we haven´t met her husband yet, so hopefully we can meet him soon and then have them baptized together. That´s something I´m realizing too, the family is the most essential part of this gospel. Everything we have, everything we do, is so that one day, we can make it back to our heavenly father and live with him and the rest of our spiritual family. He literally is our father, and we are his children, and more than anything he wants our safe return to live with him and become like him someday. The family is essential to God´s plan, and we must not defile or make light of so great a blessing the Lord has given us.
Well I love you all! You are such a strength to me, and I don´t know how I would do this without you. Thank you for all your emails, love, letters, prayers, thoughts, all of it! I can´t tell you how much it means to know that you are all there at home cheering for me. I pray for you always and keep you in my heart. Wish me luck in my week of spanish! Haha, if next week´s letter is all in spanish because I can´t think in english anymore, be grateful, and then ask Luke to translate it :) I love you all! Have a great week!
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