Monday, January 2, 2012

2 January 2012

Mark is the Zone Leader of this group.  This picture was taken just before Elder Ortiz left to go home.

Hermano Huillca, Mark's temporary companion 

Queridisimo familia,
2 January 2012
How good. This week has been so interesting. I bet you would like to know how is my new compa├▒ion and all, but I don’t have one! Haha. Well.. I do, more or less. I’m sending a picture of Hermano Huillca who was with me for a few of the days. Other members the other days. A few nights the son of our pensioner stayed over. He is a recently returned missionary and it was pretty interesting. My Branch missonary leader also was with me a day. He also just got back a year ago and it was really interesting for him. He introduced himself as Elder Huaman one time. Haha. So I taught 18 lessons with members present.. Unfortunately if the member is your companion it doesn’t count.
There is also a picture of the Zone just before Elder Ortiz left me.
This week was fun. I learned a bunch. Especially I liked the progress I made in teaching by the Spirit. I taught an almost pastor (he took all the years of the required study apart from about 1 or 2) of the Catholic church and when he read the introduction of the Book of Mormon, he was so surprised when he read that it’s a sacred book and contains the fulness of the Gospel (in English it says: as does the bible, in spanish, it doesn’t... interesting, Here, there are about 20 different translations of the Bible, maybe that’s why? Some say that if we don’t keep Saturday holy we will die.. I’m thinking that’s probably why) So he read that and said, “Wow that’s really bold.” And I said, “Of course that’s bold. Christ is bold. Paul was bold. The truth is bold. I really liked what happened in that lesson. It was the second time this week that someone who has read the Bible a TON felt that what we were teaching was true.
The other was when a lady decided to not accept a pass along card of the Book of Mormon.. and decided to teach me why everything I know is wrong... Anyway I felt a little nervous at the start... since I know she’s read the Holy Scriptures about a hundred times more than me, realistically I have been learning about it a bit more than a year, no? So I felt that way, but I realized as she rambled, that that’s a sin. I have to have faith... and to be nervous is to let fear in, and that is to not trust in God. El amor perfecta desecha todo temor [Love casts out all fear]. I prayed and asked for forgiveness and power was given to me. I was able to have love for her, understand her mind, teach her the doctrine, and the scriptures she opened were taught to her and me by the spirit. It was a great experience.
Teaching the family Cabrera, who are AWESOME but couldn’t go to church since their cousins from 5 years that they haven’t seen came and [they felt] obligated to visit them all day. We were sitting there and I was explaining about what it says in Alma 33 and 34 about beginning to exercise faith. They started to feel the Spirit testify of all I said. Sister Cabrera has been very Catholic and until yesterday we haven’t really been able to mention why she needs to be baptized like Christ to enter in the kingdom of God, but teaching we did this:
  1. Pray to God with faith, in the name of Christ
  2. Read and study the Scriptures
  3. Listen from the testimony of those who know
  4. Repent
  5. Be Baptized
  6. Receive the Holy Ghost
When I said be baptised, I really just mentioned it, focusing more on the first 4 [steps], but I knew that she had a question by the expression that briefly passed her face. I asked her if she would like to make a question about what I had said, and she said no. So the gist of what I said was: “Well, I perceive that you have a question.  Ask and don’t worry.” 
So she said, “The whole baptism thing, why do I have to be baptized again, if I have already been baptized in the name of Christ?”
I opened the Scriptures and explained. We read 3 Nephi 11 and Mark 10:39, but it was explained more by the spirit, and I invited her to prepare herself to be baptized for the remission of her sins, and she, from the heart, said, “I will” ....  The only problem is that she is going to Tacna for a vacation (it’s summer here right now, remember?) I hope that doesn´t turn into a problem.
Hermano Huillca, last night, was looking at all you sent me and picking out candies and found the power raspberry [crystal lite] packets. Haha. He asked how to eat it and I explained really fast but was really busy so maybe not so good... He sat down, opened it, and thinking  they were pop rocks poured it bit by bit right into his mouth. I saw him struggling and suffering in the corner of my eye and, haha I saw that he was eating it just like that. Hahaha. So I taught him how to eat it and he got a bottle, filled halfway and finished the rest. I resumed filling out Teaching Records and in a second he asked me, “Does this blow up?”(speaking of the juice) 
I was confused so I said “No”... A moment more and he asked me if it would now, and I told him: I have no idea what you’re talking about. He opened the door and started shaking it and said: I put TWO inside, and I think its going to blow up. HAhahahahaha I just started laughing and laughing. I explained that the thing is not carbonated and even if we put all the packets in it wouldn’t blow up. It will just be really strong, but not as strong as when he poured it directly in his mouth. What a funny guy.
That’s time. Enjoy the week and study the scriptures diligently!! As a family every day!
Love Elder Johnson

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