Monday, February 24, 2014

February 22, 2014

So... it´s all going pretty well! Yesterday the assistants called me and said that there was a problem. They said that the tithing from Sabanalarga (my last area) was lacking. And that since I was the group leader I was responsible.. I said okay and they said that I needed to come to the office in the morning early to have a special interview with the president with all my bags...
I kind of felt like they were joking but they said that I needed to give my companion my cell phone because I couldn´t be trusted. I gave it to my companion and then the assistants called him and said that I needed to pack. My companion was really nice and helped me. At night I didn´t sleep like at all.... but then I got up at 6:30, got ready, and we came here to the office.
President talked to my companion and said that I should wait. Then they pulled me in with the financial secretary and he gave me a paper about bad use of funding saying that I needed to fill out the process in Sabanalarga and sign the paper. They asked me what I did wrong and I said nothing. (But to be honest I thought they were joking and then later on would say I was the new financial secretary or something...) They then sent me away for a minute and then brought me back to sign the paper but the paper said "Welcome NEW SECRETARY!!!!" They recorded it all and said welcome and everyone congratulated me.... but then they said that president wanted to talk to me and congratulate me. I went in and he said.... congrats, but I just talked to your mom... and I didn´t tell her that you´re the finance secretary.... I told her that you were the new assistant....
Then everybody started yelling and they showed me the big board with all the missionaries and there was my picture.... I´m still in shock haha
It´s weird, but obviously the Lord feels like there are things I need to learn here.

I am a little sad because I´m going to miss my area in Santa Marta, but it´ll be cool here too.
I´m nervous, but I just gotta´ pray haha
I love you all!

2 gringos... never happens haha

February 17, 2014

This week we were working all week long getting our 2 investigators Angie and Katelyn ready for baptism and all was going pretty well! But unfotunately Katelyn didn´t get baptized. Her family is all less active and the night before the baptism we were teaching and we just felt like they were only talking to us because they wanted financial support from the church, and the dad wasn´t even going to be there for the baptism, so we said we were going to postpone the baptism just one or two weeks until the dad could be there, that actually made Katelyn a lot happier, but the next day they didn´t come to church and the mom kind of exploded saying that all the church leaders are liars that say they´ll help and don´t.... The branch president said that he would advise us not to go back for awhile...
Anyways, Angie is great! She was excited and nervous all week long, but she made it! The day of her baptism she was excited and the brach here is awesome for baptisms. A lot of people went and some even went early to decorate! The only problem was that they were repairing the water tubes outside..... that means that the water wasn´t crystal clear... it was more of a black color haha. We felt SOOOO bad, but she was okay. So it was more like getting baptized in the Jordan River like Christ did haha.

Also being zone leader means that we don´t just do exchanges with the missionaries in our zone... but the assistants do exchanges with us.... On Friday we woke up  at 4:30 to get to Barranquilla and change companions and then I came back with Elder Schwab (Gringo from Iowa who lives in North Carolina) to work here in my area. I felt a little stressed haha, but we taught some great lessons. He teaches well and we found some good new investigators including a family of 6!
At night he did give me some pointers and things I can do better. He said that our zone could be doing a lot better than it is, so we´re gonna work harder! Then the next day we woke up early again and I went to get my companion back.

Other than that it was a pretty average week. Love you all bye!

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

February 10, 2014

So this week was pretty busy and now I´m not very happy because every week seems to just fly by haha. On Wednesday morning we had to wake up at 4 to get ready and head down Barranquilla for the leadership counsel. It´s all the zone leaders, asistants, and sister leaders. It was cool, spiritual and a little scary haha. But it was awesome. The do it the first Wednesday of every month. They called us the night before and said to bring our area books.... Our area book wasn´t too bad, but we could have done a little better.
A van picked us and the other zone leaders up and we got there at like 7:30. They gave us a lot of trainings and things to share with our zones. They had us review each others´ area books and point out how we can do better. The mission president shared with us some concerns he has about the mission and that apparently there is a LOT of disobedience in our mission. Another zone leader (Elder House, MTC companion) told me that president went to his zone and started chewing out quite a few missionaries.... BUT my zone is good haha. After the counsel they fed us Subway and gave us all the packages and materials for our zones to take back. We didn´t get home until like 7:30. I was pretty tired the next day which was weird because we didn´t even work in our area and we were in air conditioning all day long haha.
On We´ve been really blessed as far as our investigators. There aren´t a ton, but the ones we have are progressing well. We have 2 baptisms for this Saturday. One is the daughter of a less-active family and the other is a girl that started coming to church with her less active friend haha. YAY less actives!!!
We have a great investigator that is the future husband of a less active member. He´s called Norveis, and he´s funny, and we gave him a white shirt and a tie on Saturday, but he didn´t come to church.... It´s because they were moving. We´ll get ´em next week!
Got my package from the family! Thank you! I´m excited to listen to the CD, but our DVD player is broken.... so I´m looking for one to be able to listen to the CD haha.
Love you bye!

February 3, 2014

Hello! What a week! So on Tuesday we just had a great day of teaching! A lot of investigators listened to us and we´re having some good progress as far as baptism goes!
Wednesday we had to go and help some missionaries in our zone move because they were living in the church and they truck driver must be a tetris MASTER (like dad) because he fit everything in this little truck perfectly, including my companion and I haha. Then afterwards we did and "invasion." All the missionaries in the zone came to that area to go out and tract because that area is really struggling, but we got them some references!
Thursday one of our investigators told us that she has the people from her current church going over and showing anti-mormon videos, but she really wants this gospel to be true (please pray for Alexi Escorsia). She told us that and wanted us to answer all her anti-mormon questions, but we just said we´re there to invite and bore testimony and left.
Friday I did an exchange and went to this little town called Gaira. The missionaries there have to travel a lot in bus and we ate lunch with a family that lives SUPER far on a little farm. We had to walk in a little bit of jungle. It was kind what I imagined that Colombia would be like before I got here.I was able to help the elder and get him excited again, but he taught me a lot about how to work and teach more clearly. He goes home in like 9 weeks.
Saturday we had a ton of appointments! And we were blessed when we visited Alexi and she said that she finally prayed sincerely and felt that she just had to keep reading. We said it was an answer from god and she knows that it was.
Sunday 5 investigators came to church! Including Alexi and varios members brought friends for us to teach as well! We´re being really blessed. We also could help the branch president help a less active family that almost lost their home. He asked us to go with him and we talked to the family about the bishops store house and they´re getting help from the branch now.
Today we went and bought stuff downtown, I saw the beach and the ocean, we ate chinese food, and we watcehd the best 2 years hahaha. So great.
I love the mission!
I´m praying for you all! congrats to my super awesome brother who is making the greatest changes of all!!!

January 27, 2013

So Santa Marta is sweet. Right at the start of this week we did an exchange. I went with another elder who´s pretty close to finishing his mission and he´s a little sad and feels like he hasn´t had a lot of success in his mission. But we just worked and he teaches SUPER good. I told him that at the end and he said he liked working with me. While I was with him my companion was with a newer missionary who´s a little proud, and lies. My companion is the bad cop. He humbled the elder pretty well haha.
Wednesday we had to go and buy mattresses and carry them in a little tiny bus to a town that´s about an hour away. We had to haggle with ever mode of transportation in order to get the price down... gall!!! But we did get there. At one point we put the mattresses on top of a bicycle taxi. It´s a back taht pulls a little carriage. Everybody looked at us and just laughed. Silly mormons haha.
Our area is struggling as far as finding good people to teach. The members give us references, but they´re all 16 year-old kids... They´re great! but I like baptizing men hahaha.
My companion is great and loves that I´m willing to do the zone stuff. We get along well and work well together. Our area is cool, but rough, we have a lot of hills that are about 87 degrees haha.
Today we played soccer with the other zone here in santa marta, and I made a goal!!!! I remember when I made goals in little league you guys bought me a slurpee.... I would like a slurpee please.
Love you bye!

January 20, 2014

THEY TRANSFERED ME! The mission president took me out of my dear and beloved Sabanalarga... I was really sad to leave. We visited our converts and said that it was possible that one of us would be leaving and they were really sad, and said they´d pray that we wouldn´t leave.. but oh well...
So they called me on Tuesday night and sad Elder Morgan, you´re going to Santa Marta as Zone Leader. So there are 2 zones in Santa Marta and we´re the Manzanares zone. It´s actually super nice here. Santa Marta is a District, not a stake yet. But of all the branches we have the best branch that´s full of returned missionaries and members that give us a lot of refernces. My new companion is named Elder Juarez and he´s from PerĂº. He´s been a zone leader a really long time and he´s great.
The thing is that we run errands ALL the time.. Every now and then he looks at me and says, "I can tell you feel bad that we´re not out teaching, but you´ll get used to it." haha.
He´s right. I feel a little weird and it´s different, but it´s fun.
We work differently here than in my last area. It´s basically just ALL references and working with the less active members and baptizing their family members that didn´t get baptized with them, the only problem is that a lot of our references are kids, but we´ll get a family soon to go and teach, I can feel it.
We had our interviews with the mission president on Saturday, he´s just such a champ. He´s so funny and awesome haha.
Santa Marta is great and I´m happy to be here. The people here are nice, and it´s really touristic. Love you all! Have a nice week!

January 13, 2014

So this week was a hoot and a holler. So we started the week really excited for the baptism that was coming up on Saturday.
They both needed to be interviewed by the mission president and he came to interview her... but she never came... but President Searle is AWESOME and said he´s drive us to her house!!! so we went and as we got there she was leaving to get to the interview. But he just talked to her right there and it was fine. And Manuel went and talked to president in Barranquilla. so that went well.
I also had been calling every day asking about the birth certificate of Mayra (the wife) and Manuel (the husband) still hadn´t gone to get his in Barranquilla, so we were really nervous. It got to Wednesday and the office secretary said it was very likely that we would have Mayra´s certificate before Friday. And without a certificate they can´t get married............... or so we THOUGHT!!!!
We went to Barranquilla to get my companion´s ID and I ran into Elder Palmer (good mission friend) and I told him of my woes... and he said "Why don´t you call the guy from Cartagena that marries people without the birth certificate?" Well gee.... I DIDN´T KNOW THIS GUY EXISTED!!! But we called him and after some negotiating he said he´d come!

So there´s a picture of the guy in the our little house church marrying them, but it was still rough because they all showed up an hour late to their own wedding and when she showed up she said that she didn´t even have her ID because she had pawned it for a little bit....... colombia..... but the guy said he could do if we sended the ID  the next day.
The wedding was cool because they were members of a church that didn´t allow women to wear make up and when a member said that she would do her make up she got really excited and the members found her a dress and we lent him a suit hahaha.
When the guy finished marrying them he told them to kiss and Manuel was embarrassed... but she wasn´t haha (see picture)
So they got married and it was great. Some members even found her a little bouquet haha. Which she threw to all the single ladies after.
And then of course the next day they couldn´t even get to their baptism on time... BUT THEY DID GET THERE!!!
So it was a great week for them and for us! And now we get to teach their son too! He´s 9 so he counts as a baptism for us too!!!! woohoo!!! haha
Yesterday they brought all their kids to church and it was funny because the kids behaved AWFUL!! But I was just so happy because they´re the first young family in the group here haha.
We also had 5 investigators at church yesterday! Two of which I didn´t even recognize until my companion told me there were ours haha... awkward...

I LOVE THE MISSION!!!!! Hope you all have a good week too!!!

January 6, 2014

So here we are we just passed the new year here in Sabanalarga and it went really well! WE found several people to teach this week which was cool! One was super awesome and showed a lot of promise, but didn´t come to church... but that´s okay, we´ll work on it.
The Corra family change from a pretty good family to AWESOME!!! The kids are all young, but the parents are TOTALLY getting baptized (god willing) this Saturday! Here we are working with them. Then need "special interviews" and need their records to be able to get married on Friday so that we can then head over to the pool on Saturday and get ´em baptized!
We had a pretty good day yesterday because..... TEN people came to church! It was SO sweet! haha. That´s not even counting the friends and kids that our investigators brought as well.
Sacrament meeting started and I was a little nervous becasue the Corra famiy wasn´t there but then about 15 minutes into the meeting they walked in with ALL of their kids dressed up nice, I just about cried haha.
Alberto is working out pretty great because we´re teaching a couple that lives in front of him, and now his wife wants to listen too!
To bring in the new year we... slept haha. We didn´t really do anything. We worked normally and then went to bed on time. A car with super loud speakers passed by at about midnight so I said Happy New Year to my companion then haha.
Okay. So happy new year everyone! I love you all bye!

December 30, 2013

So.... What a Christmas!!! It was great! Especially talking with the family! I was super excited all day long for that haha.
We had a great Christmas and Christmas eve. On Christmas eve we went over to see Alberto and he was a little sad because his wife didn´t come home for Christmas, but he had bought us some cookies and soda hoping that we would come so that was really nice! Then at night what was our christmas eve dinner?..... PIZZA, SKREWS (it´s a bread thing with caramel in the middle), and COCA COLA!!!! Yay!!!! haha. Picture included. Then at night I opened one present, and with luck it was pajamas!!! Batman pajamas haha.
Christmas morning I opened my presents and they were great! A few toys, an apron?, and chapstick haha. On Christmas night the daughters of the lady who cooks for us brought the food and I felt bad because Santa couldn´t get to their house. but Elder Morgan and his little toys from home could! So I gave them the little toys haha.
Also on Christmas day we were nervous because we thought Alberto had smoked and his baptism was Saturday... So on the 26th we made a good plan to go and give him support and we brought a member with us. We went ready to console him but.... HE DIDN´T SMOKE!!! And so this last Saturday he got baptized! It was AWESOME!!! The most faithful member here who had never baptized, baptized! it was a great baptism, even though not many people came... but the pool water was cold! So they told me... I know the lord answered our prayers with Alberto, and a big thanks to all of you who prayed and put his name in the temple!
We also had a great experience the the Corra family! they weren´t really preparing to get baptized, but we started talking to them and then we just started asking them questions about their desires and if they really believe that God can bless them. Then I felt impressed to share a scripture from Doctrine and Covenants about how God answers prayers, and the spirit filled the room. They then realized that they had indeed recieven answers to their prayers and wanted to get baptized.
But Sunday morning they ddn´t want to go to church, but we went to their house and talked to them and they came!!! It´s great being a missionary and seeing people humble themselves! haha. Now they just need to money to be able to get married.... (If you could pray for the Corra family that would be great)
We´ve had a lot of blessings here in this area with people changing and I know that the Lord is  here. I love you all!