Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Week 26: In which David comes to church, Claudio is surprised, and we recognize Rosa

Another week in Othello

Hola, mi amada familia y asombrosos amigos! Aqui estoy, pero estoy triste que no tengo mucho tiempo para escribir esta semana. Estaba escribiendo el Presidente Lewis y tambien contestando preguntas de otras personas. Lo siento que esta carta sera corta, pero yo quiero escribir un poquito aun que no puedo escribir tanto.

[Hello, my beloved family and wonderful friends! Here I am, but I am sad that I don't have much time to write this week. I was writing to President Lewis and also answering questions from other people. I am sorry that this letter will be short, but I want to write a little, even though I can't write very much.]

This week has been super awesome! David came to church this last week, and is doing great! His biggest challenge is going to be that he works insane hours and it's going to be hard for him to keep going to church. Arnold is doing super well too, and we are going to go by him tomorrow to help him a bit more. We saw him yesterday. He has some hangups about the trinity and nature of God, but we'll be doing our best to help him out with those.
We also met some really cool new people in the last week. We were knocking on some doors earlier in the week, and we ran across Fransisco. Fransisco is super cool, and we plan to go back tonight! He seemed super open to the message we brought, and was really touched by some of the things we shared about the restoration of the gospel. He was very interested in looking into it, since he seemed to have grown a little disillusioned with his own and other religions.
We also met a cool guy named Claudio, who was shocked to learn that we weren't paid for our efforts. Over the course of our conversation, he really opened up. He expressed his own disillusionment with his own church for having very highly-paid clergy, and was very interested when we told him about the model of organization in our own church. He was also fascinated by the idea of the restoration. We have his phone number, and he wants to hear back at some point.

Below is an excerpt from my weekly email to President Lewis, edited a bit to be more suited for this medium:
As you know, we often work with a particular service group. Once, while there, I helped a lady who was very friendly and open. I normally wouldn't think twice about something so trivial as that, but later in the day we were walking back to the apartment when I noticed the same lady go into an apartment just across the street! I simply made a mental note of the event and my companion and I continued with our evening. A few days later, we were out knocking doors not far from our apartment. I mentioned the previous experience to my companion, and he and I agreed to go knock the doors in that area. As luck (if there is such a thing as luck) would have it, the first door we knocked was the very door the lady lived in! She introduced herself to us as Rosa. We ended up having a really awesome conversation with her, and she told us that missionaries had come by before but usually couldn't really teach anything because she was usually really busy taking care of her kids, but that she really wanted us to come back and go inside to teach her more! She also asked about the Daily Dose program (note: a free public service program run by the church to help people learn English), so we gave her the information for that. We have an appointment to return Thanksgiving Day.

In that short little episode, We were fortunate to see so many different finding and missionary elements come together and form a miracle. Service, tracting, former missionary visits, and Daily Dose! It was really something awesome to see, and we're super excited to see where Rosa will go in the future!
I love you all! Have a great Thanksgiving!
Elder Adams
Q&A from Editor Mom:
Hi! - Hi right back!

How are you? Are you still sick? - 
I'm doing super awesome, thanks! I am pretty much over my cold, and I feel fine now, but I still have a death cough. I pretty much figured out that it's caused by allergies which are basically only activated/aggravated when I get sick.

How was zone conference? - 
Zone Conference was the! It was super awesome, and very inspiring. You should totally and very seriously check out the Christmas initiative this year; it's different, and very exciting. It's called #LIGHTtheWORLD.

How's Othello? - 
Othello is - pretty much, to put it lightly - the absolute best. It's pretty much just an awesome balance of everything. You probably didn't really have to deal with this on your mission, since you were in an almost exclusively Spanish-speaking area your entire mission. Here, we are often working in a bilingual area but only get to teach the people who prefer Spanish. However, in Othello, since we cover both languages in our area, whoever we talk to we get to teach! We don't even have to worry about making a division at all! I must admit, it's extremely refreshing. We still teach a lot of Spanish, of course. We just get to teach EVERYONE!!! It's so awesome!

How are your shoes holding up? - 
Thankfully, they are still holding up great. Those brown ones are extremely sturdy, and as I've been conserving my black-shoe use, everything is just peachy!

What new people have you met? - 
Big question. We met Claudio, Rosa, and Fransisco. Those are probably the three coolest. I can mention at least 1-2 later in my big email. (Probably all of them, though.)

How's the ward mission leader? - 
The Ward Mission Leader for the 2nd (English) Ward is really cool! He has some really clever and good ideas about mission work. He is pretty much on top of things, and I don't think we could survive without him sometimes. His name is Bro. Hahn. He's a really nice guy; he's a bit on the quieter side, but he's a really creative guy and very dedicated to his calling.

What day is your mission Christmas party? Where will it be? Is it mission-wide? - 
It's not quite mission-wide; it's only half the mission. The Zones going to our half of the party, which will be held in Quincy, will be: Othello, Moses Lake, Ephrata, Wenatchee, Omak. It's going to be on December 6th, in 2 weeks.

Will you be Skyping home on Christmas day? (I've heard of missionaries Skyping on Christmas Eve.) - 
Yes, it will be on Christmas Day. I will also have a 5-minute call on Christmas Eve simply to confirm the call on the following day.

Have you had snow yet? Are you staying warm?
No snow yet, but I am definitely staying warm. I'm excited for the white wonder to begin falling!

Has anything funny or embarrassing happened to you? (We heard about the pollo from Elder Boren. :-) - 
Um, not here, not yet. You clearly already know about how "Mormon" is only a chicken. Not embarrassing or funny that happened to me per se, but also I noticed something funny in the missionary handbook. It keeps talking about "El fondo del apoyo misional", or the missionary support fund (MSF). However, I prefer to read it "El fondo del pollo misional", which sounds basically identical, and means "The fund of the missionary chicken". I've always wondered how we fund the missionary chicken, or where it is even kept.

Tip for laundry: If you are doing laundry at a laundromat, make sure the washers and dryers you use are clean. I've heard of people ruining all their shirts because, for example, the person who used the washer just before them dyed something red, and there is red dye residue left in the washer. Presto: pink shirts and underwear. I've heard of people ruining clothes because of gum left in a washer or dryer. Just beware of the pitfalls of laundromats. I've had clothes stolen from laundromats, too. Fun times. - 
Thankfully, I have not yet had to deal with a true laundromat. One of the three companionships of Elders that lives here in Othello (we're all about a block from each other) has a washer/dryer, so we've all just split it up so we each individually get a day. They've become the Othello Elder Laundromat. Thanks for the tips, though!
What are you doing for Thanksgiving?  Any plans? I hope you have a happy Thanksgiving wherever you end up!
Oh, we've got dinner(s) lined up. Don't worry. We're going to have an awesome Thanksgiving!
We can't tract at all that day, President says, but we were contemplating using some of the time to bake some cookies to show our gratitude for members and others. We also have a cool return appointment set up with Rosa, who I mentioned before...
By the way, I already mentioned #LIGHTtheWORLD - it's really, really cool.You and Dad should both get involved in that; it's a great opportunity. It kicks off the day after Thanksgiving (this Friday), where there will be an AWESOME video (I know because I'm a missionary so I got to see it early ;-P). There's already a teaser for it (I also saw that). You may have already heard about this through the ward, since it's pretty big. However, the video is only a small part of it. To kick of the whole thing, December 1st is a "Worldwide Day of Service". After that, there's even a super awesome calendar (which you can probably already find somewhere online, maybe for December. It's basically an advent calendar. So, this new initiative is all about how we can all (not just Mormons) give good Christian service and try to be more like Christ as part of this special, miracle-filled season. The video shows Christ doing certain things, for example, feeding the poor, and then a modern-day example of people doing the same thing. It's super exciting! There's then an advent calendar leading up to Christmas where each day has a different focus. For example, December 2nd might be "give sight to the blind" (like donating eyeglasses) and December 3rd might be "heal the sick" (like donating blood). I don't have the calendar right now, but it's so exciting! You'd better get pumped, and you can also invite anyone to participate as well! It's really quite brilliant, and a great way to introduce the gospel and our beliefs as well. So, get psyched! 
Bonus #1:  Sister Lewis, the Mission President's wife, has been asking every missionary what they are thankful for, and posting the answers on her blog.  She asked Ben this a couple of weeks ago, pre-transfer.  Here is his answer:
I’m super thankful for the awesome people here in Wenatchee.
I’m grateful for awesome leaders in the WYM.
I’m grateful I get to speak Spanish here and eat Mexican Food! It’s way too delicious.  

Bonus #2: Ben's P-Day was a day late this week to make room for Zone Conference on Monday.  Here are a couple of pictures, and a video, which Sister Lewis took at the Zone Conference and posted on her blog.