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Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December 28, 2010 Transfer to Capital

okay, I don´t know how much I am going to write, because I got transfered and I am too excited to focus... becuase right now I am in Capital, an area called Juncal. And what`s more, I am with my trainer, Elder Nelson again. I guess I turned out to be such a failure of a missionary that they decided to retrain me. But seriously, I don`t know what`s going to happen because he is going to train again, but his companion doesn`t come until thursday for some reason, so I don´t know if I`m going to stay here with him as a threesome, or if I am going to be sent to another zone. So yeah, I only got ten minutes left to write my letter to Presidente Gulbrandsen because we`ve been talking a lot... so I`ll write more next week when I know for sure (moreso than ahora) what will be happening. Love you, Sorry for wasting time, please forgive me. I`ve got funny pictures to send next week!

Con Amor,
Elder Arrowchis

Monday, December 20, 2010

December 20, 2010 Changing Attitude

Thanks for keeping up on my stuff.  and wow, I didn´t realize that I am waking up at 6:30 when you are probably going to sleep at 12:30 (or watching lost/office).  My dad will be calling at 11 your time and you will call at 11:40.  Ten minutes in between because I don´t know exactly the minute difference and just in case I run over or it doesn´t go through I have some time to wait for the call, get some water, do some push ups, wipe the sweat and tears and get refocused... and just for my worrying doubts that something could go wrong and I´d miss your call. If I get my Christmas package this transfer it will be on Friday, because we have a "special devotional" at the president´s house (La Hermana Gulbrandsen slipped fiesta). And if I were to say how I´m doing it would be challenging. I still maintain that this is the most challengin thing I have ever done in my life, mostly because my success depends on my attitude and focus. It´s basically a crash course in consistent repentance when you are repenting everyday for not meeting your goals and promising you will plan better to meet them the next day. There are more ups and downs in a day than at West Point, if you can imagine that! That´s a bummer that Cari´s camera got stolen, luckily that hasn´t happened to me yet, probably because the Lord knows I would do something stupid (we´re not supposed to resist) and get myself or my companion hurt :/. But I´m still good, we tried making cookies this week and we played fútbol with other Elderes. Also, I´m excited to see the puzzle because if you two are still acting like I think I know you, you might get around to starting it in a year and a half, or by the time I get home!
Spiritual stories for the week: The week was a long one, but yesterday we had some miracles. I started changing my attitude yesterday and just thinking with all my mind that things specifically are going to turn out good, and I think it works. We did a contact and the person told us he didn´t believe in anything. So I started thinking that he will accept to listen to us and then my companion managed to talk to him until he seemed happy to talk to us and although he had to leave and work he said goodbye very warmly and gave us his number to try and arrange a time to meet. We also did another contact who started out very sternly saying that he was a different religion. So I thought he will accept (along those lines) and he ended up letting us in and we taught him and his family and friends and he said that although he didn´t believe in the Book of Mormon he accepted to read it and two of his friends said they will read it and pray about it. The same sort of thing happened when a member went out with us later and we taught an old investigator family. So yeah, it sounds kind of cocky and arrogant, but until the Lord "humbles" me for it I´m going to continue testing it to see if that attitude change has a difference.

Other than that I can´t think of very many other stories and my time is almost out. HOpe you enjoy the pictures at least, and hopefully I have somewhat of an accent on Saturday.

Con Amor,
Tu hijo Elder Arrowchis

Monday, December 13, 2010

December 13, 2010 Small Miracles

Okay so first things first, why did peanut brittle not come to mind?!?!? [food missed]  I also realized that I miss cheese enchiladas and cinnamon (I´ve completely forgotten how to spell that) buns. Also, it´s always fun to receive ingredients for making s´mores i.e. graham crackers, marshmellows, hershey´s chocolate. Also, I don´t really have any pictures of outside Argentina because I don´t really want somebody to see me and rob me, but there´s an extremely funny sign here that I want to take a picture of so maybe some morning we´ll run for exercise to take pictures. [to Jordan]--That kid isn´t writing me back! He might not realize it right now, but his success largely depends on going to church and reading scriptures everyday. I´m just saying, playing computer games until 2 in the morning will not help him in anything. Now I am kicking myself for all the time I have spent playing video games, it really hasn´t done anything for me. I can´t think of one way that playing computer games has helped me... no, I could have been better at the piano, or soccer, or something! Anyway, the mission will be a huge shock for him, don´t worry ;D . Tell him if he wants it to be a softer transition with more success in the beginning he will put more time into taking care of himself and reading the scriptures. Tell him we study for 3 hours in the morning before leaving to walk all day, and that in the MTC it's for basically the whole day studying the gospel/language.

Right so spiritual experiences. I can´t think of too many, maybe as I´m writing, but there were some funny stories and even several miracles (apart from watching people´s countenance change as we taught them). First, I met a real live ninja. At first I just took him for a drunk but then as we contacted his house he told us how he had to go to the police station one time for "self defense". Supposedly he was walking under the bridge and two robbers came up and stuck a revolver in his face telling him to give them his money. So as he casually reached for his pocket he did a striking block with his left hand and spun into a right elbow to the face! Then the other robber started to run away so he started unloading with his 20 shuriken ninja stars that he happened to be carrying. To prove he teaches kung fu he showed us the tattoo on his leg of the chinese characters for kung fu, but even though I don´t really remember anything from Chinese I have a suspicion that he got the wrong symbols...

Then another day as we were walking from the church we contacted a man who turned out to be pentecostal. He didn´t want to listen and insisted we were teaching doctrine of men and so then gave us a pentecostal blessing right there in the street to help us start following God. It was interesting. Then on Saturday we were walking and it started to rain out of nowhere (in other words we were in short sleeves without umbrellas). Luckily we were contacting a reference and he invited us into his house, even though it was the house of his relatives and during the birthday party of their son. They weren´t too attentive but let us talk until the rain slowed down. So then we left and were blessed to miss the worst part of the storm. Next miracle for that day, as we left we had to cross the street but couldn´t because of the flood that the rain caused. We could have walked across, but my shoes are dying right now and I did not really want to get them soaked. Then out of nowhere came a guy on a motorcycle and ferried us across to the otherside where there was no water in the street. That was literally a miracle. Then as we were walking more towards our appointment we witnessed another miracle. We came to another part where we couldn´t cross for the water in the street so as we were standing there waiting for my desires to spare my shoes run out, a couple was leaving their house and called to us. We talked with them and it turned out that they were listening to missionaries a while ago but the missionaries stopped going by and so we organized when we could pass by again and when we finished the water had receded from the street enough for me to leap frog across and not get my shoes soaked! Three miracles in one day. Apart from that we are still struggling to find more people to teach in a day.

So about Christmas. I will write more later today or during the week when we manage to get the phone number of the church because you are going to call me. First I am going to talk with my dad around 5 pm my time (I think 1 your time) and then I will finish talking with him at 5:30. Then you can call me at 5:40 (I think 1:40) and I will talk with you until 6:10, and then I go back to work for the next 5 months! But I will send another email before next week certifying the times and with the phone number where you will call me. Muchísimas gracias por toda tu ayuda con esas cosas, estoy disfrutando mi misión más por tu sacrificio a cuidarme. Gracias mamá y Matt, y les amo tanto. Yo sé que voz sos mi mamá por una razón y fue una bendición para mi. Chao Chao.

Con Amor,
Elder Arrowchis

Sunday, December 12, 2010

El Talar Pics

Mario's Baptism in El Talar

Mi tercer compañero de Missouri, USA
[Elder Blanch]

Grandpa Arrowchis, how did he get on a pamphlet?

December 6, 2010 Baptism

Believe it or not we had a baptism. His name is Mario and he was basically ready to be baptized when I got here in El Talar, but he only lacked the approval of his mom. He is 20 years old but he wanted her blessing since he still lives with her, but she came around after he bore his testimony to her and she agreed. Hope you enjoy the pictures. I´ll try sending some more as long as they go through. The baptism was great even though I didn´t really know him. He said that when he has kids he´s going to make sure that they know going on a mission is expected of them.

Con Amor,
Elder Arrowchis

November 29, 2010 Snare Drums and a Whistle

Bueno, I´m glad that Jordan managed to make it back [to BYU], and I can believe that he wouldn´t want to waste the money of Uncle Ed to get something to eat. But ha! That´s funny, no food for 12 hours, ja ja ja ja ja. I´ll send more pictures next week, but I don´t know if I have one with me and Argentina in the background, so I´ll have to take one. Besides, it´s not terribly different from California. Today I am going to go get a haircut and we are going to cook chorizos and eat choripan for lunch (French Roll sandwhich with suasage inside).

Weird, I kept wanting to write the spanish words for that sentence...if you haven´t noticed my spelling is worsening, because guess what in Spanish everything is spelled like it sounds! And each vowel only has ONE sound! I´m also trying to work on my accent to sound more latino, so hopefully when I call in 4 weeks you´ll notice a difference :D Also something more about my area, there´s a group of kids that get together in the afternoon with base and snare drums and a whistle, and they just beat their drums and play for hours. It´s so cool because I´ve never seen a bando gang before, especially not here! People watch and other kids bring their drums and join in too! It´s awesome.

Spiritual experiences for the week:

On Friday we were walking all day and didn´t find anybody. Nobody was home and nobody in the street wanted to give us their address to pass by later. Then at the end of the day when we were dejected and without plans we were going to head to the church to use the bathroom and Elder Blanch did one more contact. There was a mom and her brother and they immediately said they´d listen. We taught them and found out that the mom had been listening to missionaries when she was in high school with her friend and her brother started the lesson not believing that God answers prayers and ended saying he would pray and be baptized. It was a miracle to encounter them and see his faith change. Then we left with some time and still no more plans when we did another contact and the man accepted to listen. We taught him and his girlfriend for 15 minutes and they seemed interested. The night ended after that so we went home.

Another miracle. Yesterday we weren´t encountering too many people until we passed by a contact´s house. He wasn´t there but his mom was outside and she said she would listen. We needed a man 18 years or older to be present to teach her, so we went to a member´s house and he just happened to be there and ready to leave. So we returned in 5 minutes with the member and started teaching her. She told us that she has been dealing with depression her whole life and that a year ago her husband died and she doesn´t feel the energy or enthusiasm of living.  She also said that her brother is a bishop in Tucuman (Province in Argentina) and that he gave her a book of mormon recently and told her to talk to missionaries whenever she saw them and her other brother served a mission. It was an amazing spiritual lesson about the plan of salvation and she and her two daughters said that they would be baptized in the beginning of January. She also asked if it was possible that her brothers were praying for her. Chao, no more time.

Con Amor,
Elder Arrowchis