Tuesday, February 21, 2012

February 6, 2012

This week was real real good. I definitely miss Elder Jolley, my first son, but I was happy to accept my new son, Elder Derrik Abbott, this Wednesday. He is a few months older than I am and from Maryland. He is a great guy. He is so humble and happy and ready to work. I feel lucky to have been blessed with another great companion. I'm sure we will have a real good three months together. 

More stories about Hielda. Hielda is the sister who we have been taking to church for the last few weeks. She is so great and so loving and has so many desires to do good. I love her so much. She just has a few crazy thoughts that she hasn't really figured out yet. For example, she started offering all kinds of money to Elder Abbott and I the other day as a gift of diezmo. This week in church, she stood up in Relief Society and started to speak in tongues and prophesy, because she thinks she is a prophet, and that's what they did in her last church. Lots of the sisters complained to me and I told them that we would try to talk to her, but that they had to be really patient and try to help her figure out what is okay, and what is not. Nevertheless, she continues to progress and is a great lady. I sincerely love her a ton and she has taught me so much.  She probably wont be able to be baptized in my time here in Argentina. Hielda is married with one man, from whom she separated, but not officially divorced, and has been living with another man, Domingo, for the past 12 years. So to be baptized, she would have to get divorced and then get married to Domingo. That's the biggest problem. In Argentina, the government is insanely slow with marriages, and even slower with divorces. They have made it very difficult to do either. To be married, one has to take out a marriage license about 3 months ahead of time, and then be married by a federal judge. (The Argentine government does not recognize church marriages.) The usual divorce takes about 2-3 years, even though all the people have to do is receive a signature from a lawyer and a government official. It's super frustrating and delays and discourages hundreds of people from being baptized. Oh well, I will do my best to help these people develop their testimonies to the point where they are completely set on being baptized and won't stop for anything.

This week, one of the couples that I have been trying to help get married for six months now told me that they took out a license to be married right before I head out of Longchamps and wanted to be baptized the following Sunday. I cried. The man is the son of another man I baptized, Carlos. His name is Pablo. Him and his fiance, Natalia have been coming to church more loyally than most of the members, and it will be so good to finally see them make the big step. Can't wait.

I feel so fulfilled. I have been understanding more and more lately how much true happiness comes from helping others, and misery comes from thinking of yourself. Every time. The more you helps other's cups to be filled, the fuller your cup is. It's way too good. I feel great, and I love what I am doing. All is well. Life is good.

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