this week was pretty swell. we had 7 investigators come to church, which is miraculous after having 1 last week and none the week before. one day in the week before last, we were on our way home contacting, and a family invited us in. we entered, conversed a bit, taught lesson 1, and set a time to come back, but it wasnt a super great lesson, and i didnt think much of it afterwards. the next week, we showed up to the appointment a bit late (cus we hadnt thought they were really that interested, and had been visiting some other people) and the mom told us that they had been waiting for us, but everybody had left cus we had come late, and she told us that her daughter wanted to come to church on sunday and that she had commented about the lesson to her sister (who hadnt been present) and that she wanted to come too. we werent able to teach them again last week, but we passed by on sunday to take them to church and they were sitting outside waiting for us. the mom couldnt go cus she was sick and i think the dad was working but the two girls went and they loved it. it also worked out super great cus right as we walked up, one of the counselors in the young womens presidency who lives nearby was walking to church a little ways off and they all went together. they dont have a baptismal date but they should be able to get baptized the saturday before the next transfer (in which i'll probably get changed) and if their parents both go the next two sundays they'll all be able to get baptized together which would be awesome. the parents are nilda and javier and their daughters are diana, joana, y angelica (who stayed home with her mom on sunday)
another investigator,ana, came who we've been teaching for a while but until now hasnt been able to come to church. shes the daughter of juana and the aunt of thalia, and used to go to church with her grandma, but hadnt been able to recently because she was pregnant. she gave birth a couple weeks ago, and still cant walk much because they had to operate, but took a taxi to church. three of her daughters came with juana and thalia, and she and her son and her baby showed up during sacrament meeting. her husband works some sundays, and they say they wanna get baptized as a family, but we're gonna see if we can baptize her and her kids first to encourage her husband a bit more.
we also visited an investigator that had formerly been in the area of the other missionaries in the branch but the areas got changed and hes in ours. we werent able to teach anything but we invited him to go to church on sunday. his mom, mirna, him, isaias, and his brother have a long history with the church (the mom is familiar with gordon b hinckley) but never got baptized. we went on sunday to bring him, but nobody came out when we clapped, except the dog. he told us when he got to church that the dog had gone inside barking and that he remembered he needed to go to church and got up and went.
we also talked to marcelo, and he told us that he doesnt want to get baptized anymore and that he doesnt want us to come to his house anymore. we taught hernan on wednesday and saturday and he said he was gonna come to church but he didnt come.
also i did splits with the zone leader on wednesday which was cool. he did splits with elder barahona on tuesday, and on wednesday there were no buses cus it was new years so he stayed another day to do splits with me.
i have a ton to write, as i didnt get to write last week, so we'll see if i have time for everything. miguel got baptized saturday the 21st, cus we found out that week that he had gone to the church two times before we met him. his baptism was originally scheduled for the 22nd after church, cus he had a friend in another ward that he wanted to baptize him, and the friend was going to be travelling for Christmas. the friend came and was able to bring baptismal clothes too, cus we dont have a ton in our chapel, and none that would fit miguel very well. miguel is super awesome, the day after he got baptized he used his car to help the relief society deliver a Christmas basket to a less active family, and this week he helped the other elders in the ward to pick up investigators, and he let us use his computer to skype. he's gonna get the priesthood next sunday and sí o sí he's gonna be a great strength to the branch.
rodrigo and tamara were out of town for Christmas, and on saturday, at the baptism of the other elders, sister Chela (who rodrigo and tamara had been living with) told me that they had moved to coronel ovieda, which is like 125 km away, cus they couldnt find any work here. it's a bit sad, but a bit funny too. it's like they showed up, hermana chela brought them to church, we taught them, baptized them, and they left again. God used hermana chela to introduce them to the church, and elder muñoz and i to teach them, and now that they're members, He's using them somewhere else surely to continue his work there.
i got a new companion this transfer, Elder Chalé, who's from mexico. he got baptized just three years ago, so he doesnt know a ton of stuff, but he has a great work ethic and loves missionary work. i've been able to learn a ton from him about missionary work, and i've also been able to share a lot of the knowledge i have about the gospel with him.
elder barahona got a new companion too, elder svedin, who's on his last transfer. they had a marriage and a baptism on saturday, of the mother of a teenager that got baptized the week before i got here. it was purete.
also mary is in my district too, the girl i knew from byu.
also Christmas miracles! elder Chale and i started visiting marcelo again, and at first he said he was still waiting for a sign, but we put a baptismal date for th 28th anyways. he ended up not going to church the 22nd but seemed set to get baptized igual. we passed by his house the 28th and he said he wasnt ready, but out of the blue he showed up to church on sunday, and said he wanted to get baptized right then. elder barahona did an interview with him so that we could baptize him before sacrament meeting, but it lasted a bit longer than expected, so he has a date for this saturday.
on Christmas eve the branch president brought us dinner, which was awesome, and the next day he brought us mcdonalds for lunch, which was also awesome. on friday, the mission had a Christmas activity which was pretty sweet, but i got burned pretty bad. we played sports all morning, then had a white elephant gift exchange (i got balloons), then ate pizza hut, then went to cerro lambaré, which was pretty cool (it's a monument or something, you could probably look it up on wikipedia and find out more than i know about it).
we visited a less active family that i had never visited before, but that elder Muñoz had showed me where they lived, and it turns out one of the teenagers plays accordion and is in a legit band. he was playing and it was incredible what he could do, and i wanted to be able to practice a ton and play it a ton so bad.
we found a couple really cool new investigators this week, but unfortunately one is leaving for argentina next week, til february. the other was a contact that we had done, and set an appointment to come back. i didnt really see much potential in the contact, but when we were doing planning the night before, i confused that lesson with someone else who seemed really hungry spiritually so i was stoked for the lesson. we went to the address we had and realized what had happened, but clapped and had the appointment still. we had originally contacted a teenage girl, and she had said that we could come back to share with her and her dad. we got there and she went and got her grandma, and we asked if there was a man present to share with us, cus we cant enter unless theres a male of at least 12 years. her dad came out and sat down with us and with her. it was a super funny lesson, cus we taught lesson 1, the restoration, and the dad was like ''i already go to a church. i understand everything you're saying and i thank you for coming, but this church saved my family and i feel like this is where i should be.'' he said something along those lines a few times, and every time the girl just rolled her eyes. i had one book of mormon with me to give away, and usually we only give books of mormon to people who have already read a pamphlet or something so we can be sure that we're not wasting it (we only get 21 per transfer) but i felt i should give them the book of mormon even the dad is gonna be a bit tough, and when i said that i was gonna give him the book, you could tell it just made a huge impression on him. he was like ''wait you're just gonna give me the book? for free? why?'' and i explained that it has helped me immeasurably in my life, and i wanted that he and his family could also receive those blessings, and he was just astonished and super grateful that we were just giving away books. it really strengthened my testimony that the Spirit is guiding this work, even if at times we dont realize it. also it seems like the girl is really gonna be able to progress, and that as she progresses, she'll be able to share her testimony with her dad and the rest of her family so that her dad's not so tough and stubborn.
i cant remember anything else and i dont have my camera so i'll try to send pictures next week