Wednesday, July 13, 2011

11 July 2011

Dear Family,
Jaja la fecha de regreso no hará tanto como tener un compañero con 23.5 meses en la mision. Pero Elder Hunsaker es lo maximo. Solo a veces dice, De a qui tres semanas voy a buscar este cancion. [Ha Ha, having the return date for my mission is nothing like having a companion who's been in the mission for 23.5 months (missionaries serve for 24 months).  But, Elder Hunsaker is at the very end.  Sometimes he says, "Three weeks from now, I'm going to look for this song.]
Well just this week [we have] seen some divisions [missionary splits where companionships are switched around temporarily] with a District leader and my anterior [earlier] companion Elder Hernandez (see picture)

We went to Arequipa like I said last week for the meeting with the President of the mission. It was the maximum. [the best] We talked with him in the night of Monday about a lot of things, and then way more Tuesday [about how] to help out the Zones. The zone we are in is one of the two zones of the mission that is suffering a little. More than anything for the attitude of the missionaries. The church here is a District and Branches so there aren't so many members. I think they all get used to more help from the members and get a little disanimated [discouraged] and then tell their new companions that nothing passes [they're not having missionary success] and the tradition gets passed on. We are working big time to kill that off before the next transfers. Last month in all the Zone Camaná, there were 2 baptisms, but this month we have already had 4! So something is changing...
I think there are some religious groups really trying to preach against the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints... because we talk to a bunch of people who when they see us, say oohh but I dont believe in Adam Smith. We say.. that's great, us neither! Haha but really... what is up with that?
We had a lesson with an almost priest, or rather, he was about to take up being a priest but realized he didn't want that to be his job. So he knows a ton about the scriptures and really suprised me a few times by his insights about the sacrament and the premortal life. Never have I talked to any other person who understood so much from just the Bible. Modern day scripture really clarifies these doctrines well.
Today I really want to be able to take those pictures I have been planning to take since I got here. It's just we have quite limited time on Monday sometimes. Very pretty. But imaging those desert mountain shots I sent when I came to the valley of fields... Camaná is like that. Green surrounded by huge sandy mountains. The housing areas are pushed up into the starts of the mountains by the farm land.
We talked with Nancy this week. The first time we talked to her we talked about the Restoration and asked if she believed it. She said of course and that she has wanted to be baptized, but since her husband doesn't want to get married, she is in a situation. Also Bety has the same problem. She really feels it is true and is so animated [excited] to receive the remission of her sins, but her husband doesn't want to get married either. We will be trying to help them with their honest desires to live the Law of Chastity and if they really have that desire, they will be blessed with solutions.
Sunday one of the speakers didn't come and the other two spoke about 7 minutes combined. The Branch President asked me to fill up that time leaving me almost 30 minutes to spontaneously talk. I talked about some teachings of President Uchtdorf, of the Plan of Salvation and the blessings of living the gospel.
Now I have to relinquish the typing time to my companion. Well, see ya next week.
Elder Johnson

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