Monday, 21 October 2013

October 21st, 2013 Letter

Nice to hear everyone is adventuring and doing cool things! Dont worry about the food, we went one day to the cajero.... um.... I think ATM in english, and we tested for money. All four of us crowded the machine and when it deposited money we went a little crazy with happiness. The people outside probably thought strange things about the Mormons. But it was a joyful experience. I still am using the personal money from the American money for the airport since I havent really bought anything with it and things are fairly cheap. Not so much if you are on a missionary budget haha. We will probably celebrate thanksgiving in american fashion on whatever day that is since our neighbours who are also the landlords of our house and members are american and will probably help us out. They used to live in Seattle, pretty neat eh? They were married extremely close to the time you (mom and dad) were and have eaten in that Ivars acre of clams place too! Thank you for the info about everything (thank you mom for my IB score in music if you could tell Mr Uzick that clearly Georgia and I were just amazingly smart people and awesome and I expect laud and fame haha kidding it is nice to know I wasnt totally wrong, especially with the weird music on that test)

So, this week was good. We taught our people and such. Some are really progressing now. There is this one family (well, the mom and the son since dads are kind of hard to get in lessons here) we are teaching who just accept everything and read all the assignments and understand everything they read and amazingly awesome and cooooool! I had heard of people just accepting the word of wisdom straight away, but these two actually did! They are well on their way to entering the fold, we still have to work out the mother´s work schedule on sundays and see if she is married (this is kind of a problem in the DR) but her son actually came to church on his own without anyone passing by his house! So he is our best progressing right now. We have a couple of people stuck in the rut of not being married. It is a little frustrating that one. Another man we told he had to come to church because it is a commandment and he did. He is reading all the way in 1 Nefi 12 in less than two weeks. Other than he doesnt let us visit him much and his wife is kind of strange and doesnt want to attend our church until he is baptized he is progressing. We are taking a much more direct approach with everything and really try to get people to understand the importance now of what they are doing. That a commitment with God is serious, and that is what they do when we invite them and they accept. Hopefully this incurs action so we dont have a bunch of people with dead faith. It is happening.

Had a strange call for all the missionaries to attend an adult session of stake conference so we could stand in in the meeting and be recognized or something. Talks as of late have really been on trying to get members to work with missionaries and missionaries with members. We hope this happens, and to an extent it already is.

It is interesting here that the mission president attends stake conference of almost every stake. He was at ours along with the temple president. Presidente and Hermana Rodriguez are amazing people. They hold such a power. Hermana Rodriguez spoke about how the members need to pick up their socks and work hard because there are lots of missionaries now but not nearly enough references. President addressed our investigatores and had them stand in the meeting and spoke with them directly about the book of mormon and how important everything is and I hope those investigators there will be baptized. I would after hearing our president speak. I cannot deny the power of that man. Truly a priviledge to serve with him. He is so nice and kind and caring and yet powerful and really takes time to adress points like investigators in the meeting that day.

Our ward finally had a baptism as well. The other Elders baptized a man who had been investigating for quite a while. The water in the font was kind of low on saturday but they proceeded. Unfortunately, the man was quite tall and so the baptism was quite an ordeal for a little while, especially since he had trouble laying flat. Eventually, they found this technique of kind of sliding him into the water to fully submerge him and when it finally happened, everyone new. The Spirit really entered the room and the man being baptized felt it as well. Truly special to witness, how when the ordinance is performed properly that the Lord confirms it as such.

We had this cool lesson with the family of a returned missionary who refered us to his uncle. Despite some strange happenings with his family, it was really amazing to see how much that man wanted his family to be eternal. He wanted them all reactivated and his uncle baptized. He cried openly during the lesson bearing testimony, and is the only returned missionary here that doesnt always correct us in lessons but rather really helps. It was a really cool lesson, and I feel so touched that he would trust us with the salvation of his family. We felt so insufficient after his testimony. But we continued and it went pretty well. So glad the Spirit is with us. Really special blessing.

Que mas... spanish goes well. I understand better all the time and speak better. I still tend to meld words together a little if I dont concentrate and people still dont understand my questions perfectly haha. I still have to focus to understand spanish but I can continue the lesson even if the other people talk or ask questions. I am learning the lessons still and figuring out ways to teach better all the time. Really neat experience, and after only two months and a bit it is hard to believe I have lived somewhere other than here. Glad you still live vicarously for me at home. Someone is going to have to remind me when I come back of what it means to live differently than I am now.

I am glad all goes well at home and hope I am representing the family well here. I would like to share of my experiences with the book of mormon here. Although some investigators struggle to read it or havent yet found their answer about it yet, it is really a life changing book, if for no one else it has been for me especially out here. I can always imagine the stories being told in the book, and I love sharing testimony and explanation of the wonderful gift we have of the book of mormon. I like to tell people of my testimony of the reality of Moroni. I have really felt how he felt, how he was lonely and lost yet strong with the Lord. I love how he ends with how he shall sit with his God in the ultimate day. And I truly love his words of how he speaks as though we are present, and yet we were not, but that Jesus Christ had shown him our day. Share the book of mormon with everyone, family. There is nothing written that compares to it. Invite everyone to read it and pray. I still take Moroni´s promise here in the mission and confirm it. It is important to know that like Alma, we need to always grow in the faith through prayer and fasting and study even after witnessing all we have witnessed. Alma saw angels, and yet he still prayed and fasted and studied until his surety could not be broken. Always read the book of mormon. Always be ready to share it.

Anyway, all is well with me. We really hope for baptisms of our wonderful investigators this november. I truly want them to feel more deeply of our Savior and God´s love.

Con amor siempre,
Elder Sullivan
PS Home teaching father.... I guess you better do it. Take good care of Andy for me and get him ready to be a missionary! Take care of all the people you teach. Take care of Amanda for me, I heard she sent mission papers in, so help her and such and send my salutations and suchhhhhhh. BE GOOD.

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