Wednesday, February 1, 2012

January 16, 2012

I feel like I am getting so much into the missionary groove, I don't know if I will ever get out.  Every morning, my eyes shoot open at 6:29:59AM, one instant before my alarm clock goes off. And after that moment, I cannot go back to sleep. For those of you that have lived with me before, that is a really big deal. Usually when I wake up, I feel like someone has shot me with a buffalo tranquilizer or something and kind of feel like crying. I even feel like I have the typical missionary cadence when I talk. I promised myself I would never acquire it, and am now kind of ashamed of it. I guess lots of things change when you are a missionary.

This week, I had to run around and spend the night in a bunch of different other areas to help them out and to do some baptismal interviews. The District Leaders in the mission are always traveling all around the mission, so I can expect weeks like this for the rest of my mission. It was really good to spend time in other areas, but being away from Longchamps for a few days made me realize how much Longchamps has become my home here in Argentina. I love it so much.

This week we started talking to a man named Eloy. Eloy just moved from Peru and he told us that he came here with the clothes on his back and 10 pesos in his pocket ($2.50). Right now he is without a house and sleeping in the trains, in parks, or on buses. The way we found Eloy was really interesting. The other day, we were on a bus that we take several times a day.  Let me digress for a second. When we are on the buses, we always do our best to talk to as many people as we can. We decided we needed to be more bold and started talking to people on the buses in a different way. We get on the bus and stand at the very front, hold up a pamphlet from the Church, and say in a loud voice for all to hear, "We are men called of God. We are here to share a message that will help you. Right now we are going to come and talk to every one of you. If you are interested in the truth, you will give us your address so we can pass by your house. Thank you." It's so embarrassing sometimes and I kind of hate it, but Elder Jolley loves it, so we do it anyways. We have found some good people in that way. But, when we found Eloy, we were not doing mass soap box contacts. We were just standing really close to people who were sitting down, and putting our name tags right in their faces, almost forcing them to look at us. Then we ask them why they are looking at our name tag and start up a conversation. I was doing that to Eloy on a bus and he was looking pretty earnestly at my tag, but we were about to get off the bus, so I didn't start up a conversation. Later in the day, we were walking around an area that we had never been in. We walked past a house and I saw Eloy sitting on a chair outside, sleeping. We were kind of in a hurry, so we didn't stop. I told Elder Jolley that I had seen the same guy twice and I thought it was weird. Elder Joelly just stopped walking and said, "Whaaaaat?!" He was really distressed and told that if I see a person two times in one day, the Lord really want us to talk to him. Elder Jolley was totally right, so we went back and asked Eloy how he was doing. He ended up being totally nice and humble and homeless. He had just been sleeping in front of his friends house when we found him. We started teaching him at the church and it has been so good. He is so prepared for us. He is getting baptized in two weeks. Too good. I will let you know what happens with him in the next few weeks.

The mission is real good right now and I am starting to think that one year more is not going to be enough. I miss home and I miss you guys. All is well. Life is good.

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