Wow what a week! We had a wonderful baptism Saturday with Augustin. I had my first baptism at a river, the River Piribebuy (I think that is how it is spelled but it has a Guarani accent). The person who did the baptism was the branch president, Pres. Vera. I have really been learning a lot about ¨testimonies¨. It’s an amazing thing, the first time I bore testimony of the Book of Mormon and Augustin hasn’t missed a day of church yet. He has been paying his tithing, and he wants to go out with us and work. He already has the Aaronic Priesthood. Our stake president wants every man who can have the priesthood to have it because they want Limpio to be its own stake. Then later Saturday we had the baptism of Matias, the son of Leo. I got to do the baptism, and he calls me “Polar Bear” so I would like to leave him with a Canadian Toonie so I hope I don't get taken out this change, in 2 days.
Ok thank you for telling me about the money, I will fix that but I will let you know that I took out money today, but that will be enough for a while. I had to buy a new memory card because my 4 GB one broke so I bought a new one and I will be sending the other 1 GB home soon because it is full. When you send me one back fill it with pictures of Waterton, and wildlife too. I love showing people pictures of mountains and snow and saying that is where I live. Most people here have never seen real snow in their lives.
That t-shirt says Z Poti. “Poti” is “Limpio” in Guarani so it is (Zone Limpio) and on the back it says ¨Ram in the Thicket¨ That map is my area. The city is Limpio, a picture I took from a bus and a random pharmacy.
I have been working on my companion trying to find the thing that will spark the charge. It is hard to find but I haven't given up and I am not giving up because there are elders here that are worse and I know I will get put with one some time later. I am trying to find ways of filling up the time so we don't go to members’ houses and talk. He loves talking to the members and watching soccer. But he is a great teacher. He knows what the people need. When he is really focusing he can do a lot of good.
By the way, I think Fifa is trying to attack the church! Fathers day, Paraguay playing in the world cup, rain - the three things that do not work together when you are looking for people to take to church, but Paraguay won 2-0 so its all good haha. We had 3 investigators in the church and 45 people total. My first week there were only 15 people here in total and I was thinking, ¨Wow, what a small ward¨ haha.
Send the iPod through Fed-Ex. The missionaries here said that iPods in Paraguay are painfully expensive and hard to find. I got the package today with the thermal underwear and the batteries. It got here just fine, so I will expect it within a few weeks.
I have a couple of questions. Can you forward me the letters from Elder Bishop? There are a lot of missionaries that receive the letters from other missionaries to hear about success stories. Maybe you can get a hold of them and send them to me too. Some news that I remember hearing about in January - Ragan and Jason, what’s happening with them, are they still getting married?
There is a scripture that I have been reading lately that I love, Luke 14:28-30, that we have to be finishers in our lives, If we start something we have to finish it. It also relates to Nephi’s story about going back to get the plates. We have to be finishers in our lives. I have heard a talk by President Monson ¨Finishers Wanted¨ but I haven't read it yet. President Monson quotes the scripture. I heard about it from a John Bytheway talk.
Oh one thing more you can send me is the conference issue of the Ensign. We still don’t have it. We have this month’s but not last month’s and I want to read the talks, and some church videos that we can show investigators like “The Testament” and The Restoration”, movies like that. We can find them at the distribution center but there is no time to go to Asuncion for that. Also send any other copies of talks.
Something funny that happened last week, we were doing a family home evening with Leo, Augustin, Maties, and his younger sister and I was reading my family history stories but I had to try and translate it and that wasn’t turning out very well. It was getting kind of boring because they had to wait for us to translate the stories so after I had Elder Alvarez do a quick game and I had a prayer in my heart ¨How can I fix this lesson¨, then it came to me! With a little heavenly help I was able to pull off just the sweetest lesson on patience, and how the people that were sitting for the whole lesson have patience and that is an attribute of Christ. They liked it. So I was full of thanks to God at the end of the day.
Well thanks for everything. I am loving Paraguay! The Church is true. Thanks for everything you do for me!
Love Élder Rodgers