Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Aug 11th 2014

Hey everybody!

So, another week, another dollar. Haha, well, a rather different week since we had lots of celebrating of the leaving of Elder Lindsay with lots of members and people. Nice to hear that everyone is having a good summer and that you are all still doing lots of activities and having a good time and getting fit with all that water sport. I do miss the lake, but Elder Lindsay is supposed to send photos of it next week to me haha. I hope Mom gets better from being sick (Get better Mom! I´m praying!). Seminary sounds really cool, Brother Wilde was a really good teacher of seminary so probably helped everyone know how to do it better. Thanks for all the prayers for Tony! I hope everything goes well on your guys end with all you are doing as well!

The big news, transfers. I am staying with Elder Nelson here in Azua for one more transfer! Yeah! A guy I know is going to be the other zone leader here, and the hermanas will be really different as two different ones are coming. So that will be fun!

So we had a sort of strange week. A few sicknesses went through, I didnt get any but other people did so our whole work this week was a little poor but overall effective. At least a lot of members got visited to dismiss Elder Lindsay. It was fun though! We did a cool district meeting where we had a message about eternal marriage (a great class for missionaries and young men!) which was funny and probably gave everyone a bunch of ¨trunky¨ feelings. We then had a practice done by two of the musically and theatrically inclined hermanas, and it was absolutely hilarious. I wish I could upload the video, but its too big. Anyway, they did a practice marriage proposal as Elder Lindsay and Brother Wingman. They like, shared some scriptures about marriage and it was kind of like a missionary lesson (but about as funny as lessons with crazy people). And then they sang ¨Love One Another¨ But it said ¨as I have loved you, marry me forever.¨ hahahahaha. Then the commitment was extended with promises of blessings and fidelity forever. And at the end bro wingman testified of his companions words of proposal, and they ended with a prayer. One of the funnier things I´ve seen. Someday you will all see the video. So thats funny you guys had YM talk about temple marriage. Its true, its the only way to obtain exaltation and we all agreed as a district that its pretty awesome stuff. I said of the few things we get to take with us into the next life, the biggest part is one´s wife and family. So hopefully I get married one day (maybe sooner than later.). Oh, funny comment Dad about sister missionaries haha. I´ll keep it in mind (but probably not really haha).

We got our fill of Elder Lindsay being dead jokes, and all his things about country music (he sang a bunch, we had like a personal concert of it) and hunting and stuff. We visited a bunch of people, but still arent finding many new ones yet. Tony is still progressing really well, and now I get to see him baptized with Elder Nelson! I hope we can get there by the end of this month or start of next, he is ready, just not finished yet with the lessons and a couple more things. I´m going to miss Lindsay and his tallness and cowboyness, but it will be fun here. Also those two hermanas who are leaving were super cool, so hopefully the next ones are cool too. We at least still have familia calderon to chill with here and still clean their dishes and talk with them and enjoy fresh produce and get references.

So I got beat by my ¨mission tia (aunt)¨ She like, hit me with kitchen utensils. We were helping her cook, and I said something about her being really mean, so she was. We got a ride in an awesome car too! And have been eating slightly more dominican lately (the oil and salt is too much here no wonder they all have diabetes). The hermanas finally had a normal baptism that went without any hitches. We did an awesome karaoke activity for activity night here. It was sick. They like, danced and sang and we sang a bit too haha. Not very well though. Spanish music is cool but super high. It was pretty goofy. Mostly we are just goofy. Its weird to change and everything but change is the law of life and we are willing to live it. Hopefully we will comply well with revelation and make the best of God´s blessings!

Anyway, looks like a bright new future here in Azua!

Con amor,

Elder Sullivan

Friday, 8 August 2014

Aug 4, 2014

Hey everybody here from the DR!

So here I am yes over the one year mark. They say its downhill from here on out, which I hope not, because the hill wasn´t very high that I made it up for the first year. Sounds like everyone is enjoying the lake out there, thats great! Here the weather has been extremely hot other than a couple days of rainstorms. The gardening yes is pretty interesting, and yields some great tasting produce! Although, all the produce from here is fresh since we market buy, but its better right from the garden when you pluck it. The fresh fruit juice is super good here, we have a lot of passionfruit and a thing called tamarindo. The naturalness of stuff is really awesome and nice.

This week was pretty good, rained quite a bit. Since Elder Lindsay goes home next week, we have eaten a lot of dominican food, this like steamed chicken thing with rice. The chicken is really good done in dominican style, but it sure is a lot of rice to eat. A few people have been getting sick, and rain is sort of a ¨shut down¨ thing here in the DR. All of a sudden the whole world is sick or has some excuse to not leave their house and just lie in bed haha. Oh well, we found some people who listened. Tony, our investigator, is still doing really well. He is super awesome. Sure, we dont really progress through the lessons but we basically teach him the whole gospel every lesson anyway since he asks so many questions. He kind of just changes his life because he wants to. He cut his hair, has been leaving behind the world and is seeking God. He is slowly having his recognition that God really is there and that he is loved. Its not something that people here in the DR often admit. They like to say that they really believe in God and that they are sure he is there, but not many people really feel that way with their heart. Tony is starting to really realize what it means to feel like a son of God and not just believe for te sake of believing or something like that. He is really similar to Elder Nelson and they get along super well, and he´s similar to me too and I love talking with him. He is really intelligent and knows how to ask stumping questions (not for us though, we are missionaries and are promised not to be stumped if we are worthy) and challenges the status quo. He´s kind of like a hippie in some ways but then again not really haha. At least we all believe that meditation is really important. Anyway, hes a cool guy and will definitely be baptized. Its interesting, that we always expect some sort of recompense, some sort of reward for everything we do, and yet, the best things we recieve are the ones that have no noticeable reward. Tony has started to see that, and that really God is everywhere, and if you can feel his presence, that is all that really matters, and that if he can give and give up everything, then he will be happy. I suppose part of why we are here in a world based on temporal things is to learn to let go of everything and see that what matters most is God´s light, which is love given freely. And if we let go of all other things, we have no more weigts upon us.

Otherwise, the week was fairly regular. We still have to find more new people haha. Maybe someday will actually call the number on the cards that we also pass to people and Elder Nelson says ¨call when you want to hear the truth¨. Its been fun getting to know everybody around here. With only one week left in the transfer, Im not sure yet if Ill be staying or leaving Azua, so we kind of just plug on until something happens. Its pretty fun being with Elder Nelson, always lots of creative comments and funny moments. Whenever Im on the phone too long, he always reminds me to get off the phone. Usually by making fun of me, or how it wastes minutes or how I should leave the poor people alone. Ah well, I like to talk too much apparently. Too much country sounding music is being sung by elder lindsay lately, he needs to go before we all start preacing with cowboy hats haha. Elder Nelson still tells me ¨sounds like a personal problem¨. And we made fun of Elder Forsyth for being old, again. Everyone keeps telling me the states is better than Canada, and that I should go to university in Utah, the promised land. I do like the colour blue, but the whole being in America thing still makes me cringe. We had a super cool activity on thursday where we had a spiritual message (we just watched a video since Elder Nelson and I were a little too disinterested in doing lots of work) and then played this awesome game, they one where the person has a towel in the middle and they hold it and calls a number and one person from each team has to go and grab the thing before the other one or get tagged. Anyway, it was super cool we even got Tony to play and Brian picked up Elder Nelson when they won and they all started bouncing him up and down and cheering ¨WINNERS¨ repeatedly and tried to kill each other retrieving the chocolate bars after. So it was good, lots of yelling and fun at least.

Yeah, so thats kind of it. The hermanas had a baptism, and I ended up singing with the four of them (no one else wanted to haha). It was fun, and my part was the coolest anyway, even without the other elders and I like singing. We sing a lot here actually, we sing hymns in every lesson.

Thanks family for everything, I hope you all have a great week!

Con amor,
Elder Sullivan
PS For the Poons!

Thanks for the LEGO! Elder Forsyth (an older guy) played with them thoroughly. I dont have the pictures, but we made a bunker for one of the guys and the jeep driving around it. It was cool, my companion bombed them though and they totally died but now they sit on a shelf in an awesome pose. I made that catapult thing too, although we dont have many things to shoot haha. Anyway, the jeep is super cool and slick looking, although we will see if many other wars are had. Remember we are all soldiers in the army of the Lord. Conquer!!!!