Sunday, September 16, 2012

August 2012

August 6
“Una semana muy normal‏” – A very normal week

This week was incredibly normal. The only interesting thing that happened was on Thursday when we had training in the mission home for trainers and trainees. There were about 12 companionships there and it was an opportunity to see how things are going for senior companions and the new missionaries. We then ate lunch and were given something similar to the roast mom makes on Sundays at home, and then ice cream. Food that you´ll only find in the mission home because the meat that they give us at members houses is barely even chewable.
Spanish is going great and I am now 95 percent fluent. I stumble every once in a while on how to ask a certain question or phrase a few things, but now I am starting to get a little worried about my English. I hope to really increase the amount of verbs I know in this last year and perfect it even more. We are now on the last week of the transfer.
Life is going well. The families here are wonderful and really make us feel at home. I’m working hard, but could be working harder. Story of our lives, right? There are always things we could be doing better. Thanks for the love and support family. Hope all is well.     Elder Farmer

 August 13

Transfers!  I´m staying in Ramon Castilla for my fourth transfer.  Two missionaries from the district are heading out, Elder Arestizabel, from Chile, who has been the DL here for four transfers, and Elder Manayay from Chicalayo who has been here for four transfers and just finished up training. Elder Arestizabel is a super good friend out here on the mission and in these last 3 changes being in the same district we´ve had a lot of good times. It’s tough seeing people leave because it´s likely we´ll only see each other at Christmas conferences from here on out.  Good times but changes are always necessary.
Today for p- day we ate lunch as the same house that we ate at last week. This time, however, we ate the famous dish of Piura, Ceviche. (Se-vee-chay). It´s a super odd looking meal but I´m sure Dad and the brothers would love it. It´s raw fish, but not really. You cut the fish into little tiny peices and then put it in a bowl with red onion, peppers, and another type of seafood called pota - im things its some sort of muscle. You´ll have to look it up. As a final step you throw in a ton of lemon juice which is so acidic that it turns the fish white as if it were cooked. Put in some tomatoes and wha-la. Scrumptious. Technically, we are not supposed to eat this meal as missionaries because the poor gringos get sick from the raw fish a lot, but.... just consider this my confession. So far my stomache feels fine and it was for a good causë: a goodbye lunch for elder Arestizabal.

Hope all is well out there family. Thanks for the emails! Even a short short hello is worth all the effort.
Love, Elder Ryan

August 20
Hump Week

It was a pretty low week but we worked hard. We hope to be able to baptize Clara Torres (who I met my second week here and has been progressing little by little), Alexandra (Fernando and Brandon’s mom), Hunberto (a 22 year old who was found by the missionaries in December), and Raul (a 19 year old whose brother is member and grandpa is a Piurano pioneer).
On Sunday we gave talks again. It was my fifth one here in the ward. I talked about a topic that was on my mind all week. On those days that we couldn’t find our investigators, we were at least finding 2 or 3 less actives to teach and it got me thinking about our faith. I recently realized that the first principle of the gospel goes way further than just having faith, but constantly cultivating it and making it grow. I don’t think that a single less active had plans to go inactive one just kind of happens.  So, how do we strengthen our faith and cultivate it even more? Simple. Keep the commandments. And hey, did you know that it’s a COMMANDMENT that we read the scriptures every day?  Alma 36:8 (or something like that) says that for small and simple things God works BIG miracles amongst the children of man. So, Im pretty sure that every less active would still be active in the church had they been reading their scriptures every day and therefore receiving the blessings of God to have more faith. But yeah, that was my message to the ward. I hope you all can think about that too. Where is your faith, and what can you do to make it even stronger?

This Friday I compete one year. It didn´t go by all that slow to be honest. Only one more year until I see you all again, but just like mom told me, one year to help even more people change their lives and have the blessings that OUR family has!

The family downstairs has a daughter that lives in LA and recently got her green card so she was able to come and visit after 6 years. On Tuesday she made us hamburgers. Real, American burgers. I could tell she paid a good price to get that quality of beef because frankly, I didn’t think it existed here. It was delicious.

Then today we went to Catecaus with the zone and I saw a sweet leather hat that I juts couldn’t pass up. It’s actually quite awesome and only cost 7 bucks. Woop.

As far as the ceviche that I ate last week.... I woke up on Tuesday with some serious stomache problems – live and learn  Love you all! Have a good week.        Elder Farmer

August 27
Falta uno‏  - Missing One

My hump day was... uneventful. The tradition amongst missionaries is burn a tie at 6 months and a shirt at 12 but i didn´t do it because I´m supposedly I´m just too practical for that. I’m not going to waste a shirt! Maybe I´ll burn a shirt right before heading home and then tell my kids that I burned it when I completed one year just for a good story, ha.
We focused a lot this week on the people that have baptismal dates. If all goes well, we will have 3 this coming Sunday. Clara Torres, Alexandra Valle, and Hunberto Anastacio, who I mentioned last Monday. Your prayers would be appreciated because even though they have progressed a lot and all have a sincere desire to get baptized.  Time is going by quite fast here in Ramon Castilla. It is weird to think that I got here way back in April. It does not seem like very long ago at all but here we are almost in September already. This coming Sunday is stake conference.

Me and my companion are getting along great and are trying to get better. Being in the mission for a year, I have developed a fear of the world. The temptations and challenges that we face are just too difficult. It is the most interesting thing to see someone 15-20 years older than us open up and tell us about all the things they have gone through and I can’t help but think what we would be or where we would be without the gospel? Fewf.

I hope all is well. Dont forget to pray. Thanks    Elder Farmer

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