Sunday, October 13, 2013

October 7, 2013

Hola de la Gran Misión Buenos Aires Norte!
So I know that last week I said that I would write Tuesday, but suprise! Tomorrow is indeed our Pday but today is our email day. Not sure how that worked out this week but whatever haha. 

So this past week was a pretty good one! We have been having some success and have found some pretty good investigators! Right now we have about 25 investigators total so we are being kept very very busy. We sometimes have to go on splits with the Ward Mission Leader and some priests in order to keep up with all of them. It is tough though because we have not had a baptism and will not have one this week, so we are trying to figure out what we could do better with them to get them to take that first step onto the straight and narrow path. We decided that we are going to have to drop some of them who are not ready for our message and are just not progressing so that we can focus on those who are ready and willing to do what it takes to have the truth in their lives. It is a very hard decisión to drop somebody, to just take them off your list and know that, at least for now, they rejected the Gospel of Christ when you did everything you could to bring it to them. But I know that eventually they will know of its truthfulness, either in this life or the next.

Also I am amazed at how much better General Conference is when you are a missionary. Haha I was looking forward to watching every session almost as much as I used to look forward to watching a Husker game or a Brand new movie. It is amazing how much you can pull for your life from each and every talk that is given during that event. Every single one of them is inspired of God for us at this time I know it. Luckily for me the stake here is amazing and they set up a small TV to watch it in English in a classroom in the stake center where we went to watch conference. I was so happy to be able to hear it in a language that I can actually speak haha. Myself and 3 other Elders, including my second companion in the MTC, and two Sisters watched it in English. We were able to watch all for sessions and our Ward misión leader brought us food to eat in between sessions. He is a boss and he does a ton of work for him. His name is Carlos and we are very lucky to have him working with us in the San Cristóbal Ward. If any of you didn´t get the chance to watch any of the sessions, or even if you did, I know you will learn so much if you go back and watch or read the talks again here soon! Like President Monson said, this last conference was one of the best ever!

This last week we had to go pay our rent directly to the company because the guy who usually takes the money to them was not there. So we took a bus right into downtown Buenos Aires. If I would've known I was going there I would've taken my camera! It is beautiful there and the buildings are absolutely amazing. We went right past the national capital and a bunch of other buildings. Its pretty much like going right to the national mall in Washington D.C. It is like a whole different world there. The buildings are huge and extremely architectural, a lot like stuff you would find in Europe, and everybody is White. Here in my área pretty much everyone is either Peruvian or Chilean, so everyone is kinda darkish. But just a short bus ride away it was like I went to Europe. Crazy how that Works. I was still the only guy with blonde hair though cause almost everyone in Central Buenos Aires is of Italian or Spanish descent which gives them dark hair. All the Germans live in a different sección of town haha.

Also here is something really cool! There is a guy in my Ward and his name is (get this) Lucas Zolinger (it only has one L to keep that sound cause with two L´s is makes a shhh sound here). Haha when he saw me and looked at my nametag he was like what the?! He himself is from Brazil but  you can definitely tell his ancestors were German or Swiss cause he is White but has just lost the blonde hair due to him Brazilian mom. He is a great guy and he is fluent in English, Spanish, Portugese, and is learning German. So needless to say we get along really well! He told me that his mom has done family history work and his ancestors came from a town called Zollingern (i think) in Switzerland during World War 1 and some also came later after World War 2. They all moved to and live in Northern Brazil but he came down to Argentina for school. The school he got into is really good and you have to be fluent in English and Spanish to get in. Anyway he is really cool and I just thought you might like to know that we still have relatives as far away as Argentina!

I am glad things are going well back home and Mom is healthy. I have been keeping all the fam in my prayers and I try to pray for each one individually so hopefully that has been helping you all. I´m glad that Dad has been enjoying his retired life and I am certain that he will remain busy with stuff to do around the house. Maybe by the time I get home the shop will be built and the Jeep will be fixed and I can take it as my homecoming gift! Haha I can dream can´t I? Anyway I am sure that the Lord answers prayers so if you all need anything just ask him for it!

As for me, I am doing good! I still can´t hardly understand anybody but I think that I am getting better. Either that or I am just getting used to not understanding anybody... haha. But yeah it is going good! It is frustrating not being able to understand people cause I really just want to help and serve them but that is really hard when you cannot understand them. I hope that I can learn either Spanish or patience quick cause with my high expectations of myself I start to get frustrated that I cannot do much. I am sure that within a few more weeks (or months) I will be able to do whatever I need to do and speak with people. I can usually speak and say what I want I just have a hard time understanding what others say to me. Oh well though I am pretty sure the Lord is just trying to teach me patience, which is something I have not ever had... Just keep up the prayers for me to learn quick and I am sure it will come with time.

So I am pretty sure that Barry comes home this week right?! It is so weird to think that he will be getting back and I am just getting started, but I am so happy for him. Please Please go to his homecoming or even stop by his house and get him to write me cause I haven´t Heard from him in forever! Also, if you see Joel tell him to email me cause I have not Heard from him yet either. Also I am pretty sure Marshall comes home in about two weeks, so make sure to stop by and see him too. I know that is a lot cause you are all busy but at least go to their homecomings for me please!

Well there isn´t really a whole lot else going on around here. We have a misión conference tomorrow so that should be fun. I am pretty sure that the misión president is taking us all to the Buenos Aires Zoo. It will be good to see my friends from the MTC and also meet some new people. It should be good and I am pretty excited!
So anyway thanks to you all for your love, support, and prayers on my behalf. I can feel their power every day. I know that this work is true and is lead by the Lord himself. I look forward to hearing from you all again next week.
Love always,
Elder Zollinger
Tory and Elder Pereira

Tory, Elder Pereira in San Cristabal

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