Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy Turkey Day!

Happy Thanksgiving this week! I can’t believe it has already been a year since I was in the Provo MTC about to leave for Peru. I hope this Thanksgiving day is amazing for everyone, and especially to think and to give thanks to our Father in Heaven for the blessings He has given us.

This week, we had cambios! Elder Condori and I knew that he would be leaving the area, since he had been here in this area for 6 months and that is basically the most time in one area in my mission. It was good, he said good-bye and everything and we actually got along those last two days. I am still here in the Pirai stake in the Abundancia Ward.

Wednesday, we went and picked up my new companion - Elder Colque. He is from here in Bolivia, from Cochabamba, where the temple is. He is so great. He is a hard worker and he loves the mission. He loves the people and just wants to help them, and he teaches with the spirit. I am really happy about the changes and I am pretty sure he is exactly what our investigators and the ward needs.
He has 8 months in the mission, but he is just a temporal here in the mission, his real mission is Venezuela Barcelona. He is just waiting for his visa.

This week was good. We are working hard and finally got a man we have been teaching to come to church. His name is Alcide Garcia. He has been listening to us for a while now, but with his brother is sick in bed for the last 8 months, he has been taking care of his brother and hasn’t been able to come to church. But his brother finally is getting better little by little and Alcide was able to leave his brother for an hour to come to church. It was good.

We also taught Brother Delfin Flores, the family whose daughter just died recently. He is still hurting a lot, but he remembered what we taught him last week about the Spirit World and that his daughter is happy. Yesterday, we taught him about temples and what he can do to help his dad, uncle and other family members to return to God’s presence. He liked it, but still doesn’t have a testimony that it is the true church…little by little.

Sunday, we had another area-wide satellite training session in the stake center. Basically it was about how to work more with the wards and missionaries together. My companion and I have a lot of work to do. The ward has about 200 members on our lists... The average of active members is 80. We were all supposed to go to this training, the missionaries and all of the ward council. In our ward, it was just us, and one other person--- And it wasn’t the Bishop... It was the High Priest Group Leader. Haha. So, we have got our work cut out for us. But, I know with my new companion and with the help of the Lord we can do miracles.

Now for the bad news... I just got news that the Brother Julio Cesar, the man who stopped smoking and got baptized in my last area... He died. Apparently his brother in law killed him or something like that. My old companion emailed me and asked me if I wanted to go with him to visit the family, so we are going to go today in the afternoon to talk to the sister. I feel sad, I love that man, I remember when I was saying goodbye because I would be transferred out of the area, he hugged me. He basically was bawling and didn’t want to let me go, he told me that we had changed his life forever. I am sad, but I know where he is now, and I know he is happy, that he, at least, repented and got baptized.

So, basically that is my week. Really happy with the changes and sad with the news that I just got. But, I am all right. This is the Lord’s work and I am just His servant. I feel SOOO much better now with my new companion, Elder Colque. Even the members noticed it yesterday, haha. They told me I look more happy and more energetic and with more desires to get to work.

I love you all, and I hope you are all doing great things up there in ¨Gringo-landia¨ as some say here in Santa Cruz. I honest know for a fact that the lord Jesus Christ saved us with his atonement. I know that he loves us and wants us to come back to Him. I can feel more and more light and happiness as I continue to read the scriptures and say my prayers. We are children of a God. We are royalty, so we should act like it. I know that the Lord has put on this earth one true church here on Earth so we can do ordinances (I don’t remember how to spell that-- Ordananzas) in a holy temple of the Lord. I know this with all my heart and I am so blessed and so thankful to my God that we live in this time of the world.

Be happy people. There is hope still in this world. We are loved by God.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Going Strong

Another week has passed and I am still here going strong. This week went by faster than the last and I honestly dont have much to tell you all, since we just worked like normal but here is what happened with me...
This week, we started teaching new people.
Sister Diana Sandoval is a 22 year old girl who listened to the missionaries before and this week we taught her about the restoration and the Book of Mormon. She was really nervous to pray because she thought the bed or things would start to move, but we explained to her, and she prayed and read the Book of Mormon, she said she believes that Joseph Smith was a prophet, and she accepted a baptismal date for December. 
She has her husband and baby girl, but the husband doesnt want to listen to us, maybe some day soon he will listen.
We also taught Brother Delfin Flores and his wife, Daisy, the couple that I told you lost their baby reciently. We taught them about eternal families and they had a lot of questions, about death and where is their daughter now. They are really confused because people from other churches (namely the Jehova´s Witnesses) are visiting them and they are just so confused. They thought their baby girl was there in the ground, just in a really deep sleep. But, we taught them and they said they would pray to know if it is true. 
The hard thing with them is that they never have time for us to visit them... just once a week every Sunday. But, little by little, they will hear our message and I hope they progress. They are hurting a lot, and I know the gospel message will help them with everything.
Other than those two, we didnt do much this week. Last week, we thought we found a house for the new missionaries and us to live in, but the zone leaders told us that we couldnt live there, so this week was ¨Find a House¨ week. When a lesson fell through, we went out on the hunt. The houses here a either just rooms put together and they all share the bathroom,  or they are really small. So, it was tough to find a house for us to live in, but we found one that is more or less suitable. But, it is fine.
Ummm... What else happened? Umm... It is getting really hot and everyone started giving us watermelon to eat, instead of just soda. It has been a nice, delicious change.
Other than that, there isnt much left. I love you guys so much. I will talk to you later... Until next week!
... My card reader broke. Pictures... some time soon!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

November 12, 2013

How goes it everyone? I am hoping everyone is doing well, havent heard from Brooke or Corey or even Oakley for some time now- are they still alive and doing well?
This week was good, it went by so fast, but it was good--
 Lets see what happened this week-
Monday, like I told you already, we went to go bowling on Monday, it was super fun and good to just hang out and relax for a little bit- we didnt even get to finish and see who won, because here you pay by the hour and not the game, and we didnt know that, so we didnt get to finish the game, but it was still good-
Tuesday and the majority of the week, we were told that 2 more Elders will be coming to our area to work with us at the end of the month, so we were looking for a new house to rent. We didnt do a ton of teaching since we had to look for a house, but we finally found one, and so fun stuff.
Wednesday I had an intercambio (exchange) with my district leader, Elder Sarasty, from Columbia. My companion went over to his area and he worked with me in my area- it went really well, we taught a teenager named Milton and we challenged him to baptism- he accepted and he is working on getting baptized this 30th of November,
I learned a lot that day- I learned that I need to just be me, even if my companion wants to be a robot and just teach the lessons and not according to what the people need, it was really good and he even bought me dinner to celebrate my year mark in the mission
Thursday- My year mark!! Or as mom wrote me today, the countdown begins until I am home. Haha, it was a good day! I was really happy and had a good attitude all day, even if my companion is a twinkie (just 9 more days together, I can survive.) Haha. I feel different now that I have a year under my belt, more confident, more happy- I like it
The weekend passed quickly and nothing else newsworthy happened- we are really trying to help the ward get out of the funk that it is in right now- it is going good- I am loving the work now-
Well, that is about it for this week- It went by fast but it was a good week-

I honestly know that the church is true. We teach people all day about the truth but many just think that it is impossible to know which is the true church. With all the other churchs and doctrines out there, they have just given up hope that they can know the truth for themselves. That is the thing though, we can know for ourselves what is the truth. I know with everything that I am, that the church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the one and only true church of God here on this earth-- I know it, I can feel it in my heart! I do not have one doubt about it-. I know also, that even though we arent perfect as people, God still loves us- He will always love us and that is the truth!

I love you so much!! Talk to you all next week!
Ugh, I was going to send you all some pictures but my zone leader stole my card reader. Haha, maybe I will send them in another email if I have time, if not, I guess you all have something to look forward to next week! Bye!

Monday, November 4, 2013

Year Mark!

Hello family! I hope everyone is doing well. 
Time is passing faster and faster. It is crazy to me that we are in November already.
It is the week of my year mark. I have arrived at the half-way point. Honestly, I am blown away that I have a year in the mission. I am amazed that I have less than a year left in my mission. I am excited for the second half of the mission.
This week, was a little bit more of the same. Today, I only have an hour for internet. We are beginning to do more zone and district activities (something that in the past, never happened) and so today, we are going to go BOWLING!!! haha, I am so excited. There is only one bowling alley here in Santa Cruz, and for the first time, President approved that we could go.
Let´s see what happened this week... 
Some newsworthy things, were:
We found Delfin and Daisy. A mom and dad whose baby girl was sick and recentely died. They are hurting badly and Delfin, told us that before, he wasnt open to learning about other churches, but now he has a lot of questions and he is more open. We have only taught him once, so we still arent sure if he is going to progress or anything, but at least we found someone else to teach that might be open to the church.
Oh, Happy Halloween! And Happy Birthday, gramps and Kelsey! 
Here in Santa Cruz, Halloween isn't common. Only the richer people,  (in the first and second rings) celebrate it or the kids go trick-or-treating. It was just kind of a normal day here for me. It was funny since a lot of members told me that the members of the church shouldnt celebrate halloween, since it is a night of evil things. I explained that now, it is just a night to have fun and that we still celebrate it. 
Then came their holiday, The Day of the Dead, here they call it ¨Todos Santos¨ or All Saints. Basically, everyone makes homemade bread to give to people and then they go to the cemetary all day. It isnt a big thing, with everything like it is in Mexico, so it was just a normal day, with even less people in their homes for us to teach.
Not much else is going on here in my area, Abundancia. We arent having much success... The area is pretty weathy and for the first time in my mission, it has been difficult to find people that really want to listen to us. But, we are still here, plugging along as mom calls it.

I love you all so much. I know the church is true, there isnt anyother on the earth. All the other churches are good, they can make you happy or make you a better person, they can do exactly what our church does, except for one thing, they cant allow you return to our Heavenly Father again. That is the difference and that is what makes the church the only true church... that it allows us to return to the presence of our Father in Heaven again, and that is the purpose of this life- to have happiness and to return to live with Heavenly Father again. I know this with my whole heart and I know God listens to us and still loves us.
Until next week, I guess.
-Elder Jensen