Tuesday, November 26, 2013

2013-11-26, What a week.

Well my week was good and after Elder Trupp left we only had about 2 real progressing investigators, but now we have about 11 or 12.

But the highlight of my week was playing the violin in stake conference with the ward choir.  I practiced 2 songs with them: 1) I know that My Reedeemer Lives and 2) Oh My Father.  So we played the first song and we went to go sit down in the congregation.  Then we were supposed to play the closing song Oh My Father.  So me and Elder Farr were chilling in the congregation, kind of dozing off, but the president of the stake during his closing remarks, said in front of everyone, "Can the elder that played the violin come up to the stand."  I was shocked.  I was so scared, but I walked up and stood at the stand with him.  He whispered in my ear, to go get the violin and get ready to play.  Stunned, I walked over, picked up the violin, and came over ready to play.  He said to the whole stake, “this elder is going to play a song on the violin and all of you will close your eyes and after he finishes the song, every adult would have to write down a reference for the missionaries on a sheet of paper.”  He then looks at me and says to play when I am ready.  At this time I am shaking in my skin because it is so out of the blue, but I just flip open the Spanish hymn book and it opens to the hymn “Love at Home.”  I feel it is right and as soon as my bow touches those strings all my fear dissipates and before I know it, I finished the song.  When I lift the bow off of the final note it is dead silent, I mean dead, dead, dead silent.  There were a million babies in that room, but not one of them were moving or making a sound.  Then, the president turns to me, smiles, and tells everyone to write their references down.  During that song every missionary pair in our stake received about 10 references.  I played the closing song “Oh My Father” with the choir.  I had to thank Heavenly Father because I know that in the past I would not have the courage to do that kind of thing in front of even 10 people. I really like that quote that you sent me, " courage is fear that has said it's prayers" and it is true.  Now I don't really care what anyone thinks about me or how my appearance is or if it is scary because you just need to trust in your Father in Heaven.  For some reason even though I haven't played the violin consistently since the last week of high school I played better than I have ever played before.

To answer your questions, the most recent mail I got was the talk from Elder Jefferey R. Holland.  So yeah mail is kind of slow.  Hermana Jackie is going to invite us over for dinner on Thanksgiving, I think.  

I will send more pictures and concerning the package, we have a Wal-Mart in our area so no need for food, so if you can the church has a set of missionary approved reading and they are small sized books.  I believe that they are blue with a red trim on the top or bottom of the covers.  They include Jesus the Christ, True to the Faith, Our Heritage, etc.  If you guys can send me Jesus the Christ, I would really, really appreciate it.  I love reading and there is a guy that got me hooked onto some deep doctrine reading that goes to our ward, etc.  Haha but if you can send me the book, Jesus the Christ that would be great.  If you need space take out some of the paracord or something.

Sorry I didn't write yesterday.  We just got back from the temple and the new experience is really Great!  Compared to the old, the new one is really, really much better.

The area is going great and I love the work and I love my companion.  I am trying my best here and I will talk to you guys next week. I Love You guys!

Oh yeah I saw my first dead body today.  A lady was gunned down and she was in one of the lanes of the main road.  There was a huge pool of blood and people were all crowded around.  They had a sheet over her face though, and the cops were directing traffic.  We saw this on the way to the temple.

Happy Thanksgiving!  Haha hopefully the box gets here in time...haha I hope it isn't all candy we got a Wal-Mart here!  Nutella is so expensive, and they have to lock it up in the Wal-Mart under lock and key because it costs more than 100Q.

Hey, I gotta go I love you and I will talk to you next week.

 Elder Farr and Elder Vincent in front  of the Guatemala Temple.
Stake Conference, November 24, 2013.

This is breakfast cada dia.  That is beans man, frijoles and pan my breakfast everyday is either this or bread with peanut butter and jam.  Eat beans daily! 

Monday, November 18, 2013

2013-11-18 Great Things are Happening

Hey guys, I got my new companion, and he is a great guy, and a real hard worker.  His name is Elder John Hunter Farr, from Snowflake, Arizona.  He has about 9 months in the field and he is a really hard worker.  The first day with Elder Farr, we worked so much harder.  We are both kind of new to the area so we got to know all the members in the area, and just got references and a plan set to attack the area this coming week.

The great thing about this guy is that he really lets me get involved.  The first day we had a little more time before we needed to get into the house, and we were walking and he said we are going to contact and place a Book of Mormon with that guy, but you are going do it.  It was a really great experience and in all lessons he lets me lead the lesson, and he involves me in finding and choosing the direction that we should go in our area.  Many blessings have come in these short few days that I have come and we have encountered new investigators and people to teach in these few days.  We talk to much more people each day than we did, and our days are full and fulfilling.  Really great guy... we talk about a lot of things and he is a real well rounded guy. We talk about motorcycles, scouting, deep doctrine, a whole bunch of stuff. But he said that he thinks that dad was companion with his dad because his dad went to Oregon for his mission.  Dad do you know a man named Mitch Farr from your mission?  But all in all this has been a really good week, and we are doing so much more work now.  [NOTE: Mitch Farr was one of the best companions Elder Vincent's father had during his mission in Oregon-what a small world]

Our stake conference is this coming Sunday, and guess what?  I will be playing the violin in front of the whole stake here in Guatemala.   Our branch, Palencia was chosen to sing at the conference, so once they heard I play the violin, they found me one.   One of the members had one.  So I will be playing…  I Believe in Christ and Oh My Father in front of the stake with the ward choir!

I don't think I will be having a turkey dinner mom... haha we eat at our houses for Thanksgiving and Christmas.  Regarding Christmas phone call, I don't know if it will be Skype or not, but I will let you know.  The baptism was moved to Friday this week, but a member will be baptizing him so I will send pictures.  Pdays here lately… we just shop and go to the mall nothing much.  Maybe next week we will do something.

Well have a good week and stay safe!  Tell Uncle Mark, Aunt Miki, and the rest of the relatives I said Hi!  I will update you next week!  I will continue to work hard!

Elder Hunter Farr and Hunter Vincent

Monday, November 11, 2013

2013-11-11 Change is in the Wind and Opportunities Abound

Hey guys... guess what... I finished my first six weeks and my first change here in the field... but there is even bigger news... Sunday night on change week the assistants called and told us the changes.   So apparently after six weeks President is giving Elder Trupp a change leaving me in responsibility of one of the biggest areas of the mission!  The district I am in is all Hermanas except for Elder Trupp and I, and that is not changing at all.  So as Elder Trupp was a district leader, there might be a great possibility that I will be one, or the new guy coming in will be it.  I don't know where Elder Trupp is going, but he will be training a new guy.  We will find out our new companions and where Elder Trupp is going on Wednesday at change conference.  I feel overwhelmed because of the size of our area, and I have only been here 6 weeks to get oriented.  I have a feeling that my next companion will be a Latino.  

I am so pumped! I want to work so hard!  I have learned the lesson of patience, complacency kills, and how disobedience can bring down the work or obedience can build the work.   I have been reading the Liahona and conference talks, and have gotten huge progress in my in depth study of the Libro de Mormon, and the New Testament.

I am having a good week.  How are you guys?  Ha ha I am just drilling new holes in my belt, as I need them mom.  I went down about 3 almost 4 notches on my belt now.

That is really great news about C!  The blessings of the temple are so great and you receive so many blessings just from being there.  During my time at the MTC I found peace and guidance especially in those first weeks. Through the blessings of the temple you will receive blessings that do not pass away when the physical body does, rather they are things that will carry into the eternities.  I love the temple and it is such a great thing to have.  Dad make sure you follow through with him and get him to the temple, there will be no other greater feeling for C as he participates in those blessings, also I promise you that as you help him to reach that point in his life, you will receive as much happiness and joy because you helped him receive those blessings through your service.

Well have a good week and I will let you know how things go next Monday.  I Love you guys.  Oh fun fact, yesterday we walked 20 miles to get to a part of our area and back so that was a killer.  Have a good week!

Monday, November 4, 2013

2013-11-4: Learning a Lot

Hey guys how is everything going?  Haha don't worry about me I am in good hands, and I don't think it would be professional to carry around big sticks [for the dogs from hell-see last week's post].  The dogs here on the streets don't really bother you all that much and there are some dogs that bark and come after you, but the dogs in the houses are the ones that will be more aggressive for some reason.

Halloween was good, we had to be in the house by 8:30.  There were people all in the streets dressed up in costumes.  The first of November is a holiday here.  People eat a thing called fiambre, which is like a salad with all sorts of meat and junk in there. We didn't get to eat fiambre which was a bummer but our food lady said she would make it for us sooner or later.

Our investigators are doing good, and we have a baptism for a little boy next week.  His mom is the only member in their family and the husband is a nonmember.  She recently got back to church, and she wants her son to be baptized so we are teaching him the lessons.  Our other investigators are so good, and 2 of them are ladies that have husbands that hate the church, and they are not married.  So the thing is that even though these investigators love the church and they want to be baptized, they read and do everything a perfect member should do…  they cannot be baptized because their husbands do not want to get married.  One of the biggest struggles here is that people live together.   Since they are not married, we can't baptize them.   A lot of our investigators have this problem.  The places we have a lot of success is in reactivation of inactive members and I guess that is a positive thing, because if we can't baptize might as well get the ones who were baptized back to church.  We raised the assistance of members at church from 70 members to about 90 something members.  All in all everything is going okay, and we are getting new investigators everyday, a lot of the time they are very receptive but are really devout in their catholic backgrounds.

I love it here and I realize now that the mission is the best decision I have made in my life... you grow in ways that is not possible in any other conditions.  My Spanish is coming along and my testimony is growing each day.  I wish I could remember where I put my Tungsten CTR ring.  I really want it!   Haha I realize that I was really bad at keeping my things, but I am forced to be good about it now...because you have to go out of your way to get a replacement or you will never find a replacement over here in Guatemala.
Thanks for the wagons west story, it was good, set it on the side so I can read it when I get back.

Haha good news mom… instead of getting bigger I had to drill new holes for my belt because it was way too big!  Haha I told you to get the smaller size belt, and you doubted me!

I started a study journal for my rereading of the Book of Mormon and did you know that Christopher Columbus, the pilgrims, the revolutionary war, and other parts of American history is in the first book of Nephi?  Haha when I studied it one morning, I was surprised.  I did not realize this before.  Having a study journal is good because it makes me think about deeper meanings and stuff with the scriptures.  When I read that Nephi saw that far into the future, it makes me think what all the prophets in time saw in visions and things.  How far into the future or in the past have President Monson seen?  We know that John the beloved saw the end of the world in the book of revelations, so what else has other prophets seen?  What would you do if you had that kind of knowledge?  Haha my companion and I have these deep conversations while walking and discussing things like where do we think Kolob is, or when do you think the second coming is going to happen, will it happen within our time or our children or our children’s children?  A lot to ponder!

I am having fun out here and I love what I am doing.  I am trying hard to do what we are here to do! 

Have a good week and I love you guys!