Monday, March 21, 2016

Words are inadequate (week 17)

Okay, so this week was super awesome. This week I became officially legal to be in the country of Argentina and It was as torturously slow as I thought it was going to be!!! I had to sit forever in an uncomfortable chair, but whatever, at least I'm legal. 

Also we had a baptism this week. Se lllama Yamila. Oh  man she is awesome. Me and Elder Ortolano contacted her and we got a baptisimal date with her for the 19th of march and Unfortunately E. Ortolano was flashed out to another area and me and E. Rojas finished her lessons and preperation and this last Saturday was her baptism. I Had the Fantastic opportunity to baptize her. I was Honestly freaking out a little before the ordinance because this was going to be my first time baptizing someone and I was super scared I would mess it up and embarrass her in some way and I did not want to do that at all because I knew how timid she was. So I was just praying so hard that God would help me do this right and por suerte He loves her so much that He helped make sure I didn't screw it up. It also helped calm me that she is such a easily loveable person. I did have to do it twice and the water was freezing beyond all measure, But, the experience was perfect, in my own biased opinion. Then afterwards when we were trying to say good bye and get back to our pench (apartment) we went over to shake hands with yamila and her family and she shook my hand and she said "thank you so much elder porter. You did this for me and I am so happy and grateful for your work". It was the best thank you I've ever heard in my life. And she was just smiling super big and wouldn't let go of my hand and I was just feeling on top of the world at that moment but I also felt frustrated because I just wanted to hug her but I couldn't. But then Franko, my first convert, was there as well and he came up to me and told me in english "elder porter congratulations, thank you for your work". Oh man I hugged him so hard for that one!!! Then the next day at church she was confirmed and received the Holy Ghost and she looked so happy afterwards and she was crying and that was such a powerful testimony to me that she had in reality received the Holy Ghost. She is so awesome! I wish I had adequate words to express over email just how amazing she is and all the other people I have met here in Argentina. They are honestly amazing, and wonderful. It amazes me how fast and powerful the spirit works with these people. The scripture that says by small and simple things are great things brought to pass, rings so true to me right now. Because, when I think about it, all I did in this was say here is the path, here are some simple things you have to do to get on it and stay on it and then they do and then the spirit goes BOOM there's your witness and then BOOM their life is changed just like that! All because they listened two awkward teenage kids. The spirit is so powerful and and you can see it in people lives. I remember when I first met Yamila you could see in her face  and countenance her fears and worries and sadness and now she IS a Completely different person, full of faith, happiness and hope and that was wrought because she decided to listen to us and say a simple prayer to her Father in Heaven. Oh my Gosh its crazy!! that's all I can say. 

In other news Elder Oaks was Flashed out to Lobos and we got Elder Salmon who is from Alabama and and he was in my district at the MTC so its super awesome Right now in Villa Tesei.

I also found some hair in my Choripan, which would normally gross me out, but now I just pick it out and keep on eating. Progress! "Choripan" is named after chorizo sausage. It's like a chorizo hot dog on a bun. It is made from the finest cuts of pork and beef. Haha, not really. If you think to hard about what goes into chorizo, you won't want to eat it. Walking the streets with grease-dripping chori is very Argentinian. It makes you feel like a local, one of the guys. It says ‘I am from Argentina and I don’t care what goes into my food as long as it is from an animal.’ 

But anyway that is my email. I hope it makes sense and you understand a little better how awesome Argentina is. Love you guys!!!

Elder Ren Porter

Elder Rojas, me, Yamilla, and her family right before the baptism
After the baptism
Random statue of Jesus on the side of the road.
Playing tennis with the sister missionaries on p-day

A wonderful week (week 15 & 16)

Hi everyone! 

This past week (or should is say these past two weeks, because my lds mail account wasn't working so I couldn't email my mom. This caused much distress! Sorry mom!) have been something!!!

I had to do some paper work this week to get half way legal here.....which was super awesome. I had no idea what was going on or what exactly I was filling out and I wanted to photograph everything to ask someone what it meant, but had I whipped out my camera, i probably would have been robbed haha so I decided not to. 

I also bought a pair of really nice unused dress pants for three bucks this week. My comp is super jealous haha. 

Also one of our future investigators had a baby. I say future because we haven't been able to teach her yet because she had her baby on the day of our cita (appointment) which was super rude. Just kidding. 

I tried BLOOD sausage this week and it was HORRIBLE!!!  I feel like puking just thinking about it. 
On the language front....
I still can't really understand anyone and they can't understand me. I'm getting to that point of learning a language where its just plain embarrassing and NOT funny, but I'm hoping this will motivate me to work even harder so I don't have to say "no intiendo" fifty million times a day. 

Also last week me and ELder Schoonover did a food challenge that called "toddy titan" where you have to eat 3 packets of toddys (a cookie brand here in argentina, Its SUPER GOOD, definitely  something that the word of wisdom would chastise against because we can't stop eating them!) and you have to do it in 20 minutes. #teenageboysdodumbthings!! OH man it was so hard and I couldn't do it. It was definitely a humbling experience for myself. My comp was able to do it though and it totally destroyed his digestive system for rest of the week. Poor guy. So maybe it's a good thing I wasn't able to do it. Haha

I've realized how awesome bleach is here! You can use bleach to get a stain out of your shirt after a pasta lunch or you can use bleach to get rid of mold on your wall or my personal favorite....use bleach to clean the water you're about to pour down your gullet!!! Very useful stuff! I love the expressions on peoples face when i pull out a little container of bleach and put a drop in my water right before I drink it haha its awesome!! 

Something I really liked about this week was how hard it was. We had a lot of citas (appointments) and they were all over the place it was really hard and stressful. But I learned an important lesson on how to be more charitable this week. After a long day of heat, thirst, and hunger it's hard to find the motivation or patience for some things. But I've tried to just wring out that tiny ounce of effort to change my mind or find that last reserve of love and share it with those around me even though I might have wanted to keep it for myself. I've been trying to imagine people we contact or people I see with a smile, because when I first look at someone I almost immediately think "oh geez this person is not going to want to hear our message" but then we start talking with them and I do see them smile and they change into a whole new person! and then I start to see them as God might see them and its amazing!!! 

I Also saw something REALLY COOL yesterday. My comp and I were running around after sacrament trying set up appointments and I saw my first baptized investigator, Franko,  in a suit, holding two trays of bread to go clean them, after having helped pass the sacrament. I just stopped dead in my tracks and thought "Oh my Gosh. A month ago this kid, this brother of mine, that I found while just asking him for directions, was just living life and playing soccer and now he is a servant of the Lord with the priesthood of God and is on the straight and narrow path back to our Heavenly Father" And Oh my gosh, my mind was blown that I had helped do this!!!!!
I love this work down here it is amazing and awesome and I am so glad to be part of it. 

Se´ que este obra es verdad y poderoso. Se´que Dios nos ama mucho y E´l guiado este iglesia. Se´ que voy a vivir con mi familia para siempre y que Dios quiere que ayudarnos con nuestro pruebas si Se pidimos for este ayuda. 

Love you guys!!!
elder porter

P-day. Me, elder Rojas, Elder schoonover, Elder Oakes
Also p-day, with the locals trying to teach us futbol (soccer). My investigator, Gerardo, is on the far left standing up (with bright green shoes) He asked me to baptize him. Can't wait!!!

My district
The aforementioned "Toddy Cookies"
A new look I'm trying out!!! Just kidding mom!