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Monday, June 18, 2012

Rough week but hanging in there!

Well, this has been a rough one. But before you think anything, just know that I have grown sooooo much this week and I really feel like I am learning how to be a missionary here. I have had the help of my Father in Heaven so much in this area to help me be patient, humble, and diligent.

We´ll start with church. We had 4 people in church on sunday. No, I didn´t leave a zero off of the end of 40, we had 4. Haha it has rained really hard the entire week, and sunday morning it was raining really hard. We woke up and just had the feeling that it was going to be a rough one... We got to church and when 10:30 rolled around we couldn´t start because we had three people. Us and the first counselor. So we waited like 20 minutes and one hermana showed up. We left to go see what was going on with some of the members close to the chapel, some of them were sick/ had sick kids, so we went back to the church and there was still only the two other people. So we had the sacrament with 4 people and Elder Herron and I read a scripture and gave a thought, a little after the Sacrament 3 more hermanas came with some kids, so we had 11 in the chapel. It was kinda a hard situation but a testimony builder at the same time because during the sacrament I felt really good. I felt like I was where I needed to be and the Lord was happy because we as missionaries were worthy and ready to bless the sacrament for the few people that were there. (we bless every week, of course :) I felt the strongest feeling that the church is so true, so perfect, and it didn´t matter that we only had 4 people there. I was worried for the branch and for the members but it didn´t affect my testimony of the church at all, if anything it strengthened it. But....more members really do need to come. 4 is just not gonna do it. :/ We still had sunday school, Elder Herron and I had to just whip something up really quick, don´t know if it was that great but it worked, haha.

After church we went to Visit the branch president, we actually ate with his family. He had been at his house the whole time but hadn´t come. It´s hard when the branch president is inactive... We talked with him for a little bit about the atonement and how everything we do shouldn´t be for fear of punishment or because "it´s my calling and I have to do it" but we should do everything out of pure love for our savior after all that he did for us. Elder Herron gave a neat example of the atonement. He said that someone in a General Conference had explained that lots of us imagine the Atonement as a huge pile of sins and pains heaped upon the Savior at one time. But this general authority said it was more like a long long line of people. One by one, we all stood in front of Jesus and presented to him all of our sins, every single thing that we would every do wrong, and Jesus looked us in the eyes while he suffered for these sins and pains. Then I read him the scripture where Jesus asks Peter if he loves him, Peter answers yes and Jesus tells him to feed his sheep. We explained that if we truly love Jesus we will do EVERYTHING in our power to serve others, help others live the gospel in their lives. The spirit was really strong, me and Elder Herron were bawling...but we still don´t feel like we could touch the heart of president. He just had alot of excuses and is more a man of words than of actions. We hope that something we said will help him but it´s hard because he has to be the one to act, we can´t do it for him. It´s been hard because we feel like we are responsible for the branch and the members and when things don´t turn out we feel like we are doing somthing wrong. I know it´s not like that but that´s how we feel sometimes. But we will never quit helping the members get excited and this week we are going to visit a ton of inactives and non members with the first counselor in the branch, so we´ll see how that goes.

We have struggled to find investigators, we have been working hard to talk to everyone, to ask everybody for references and find the people who need this message in their lives. We had a couple of dates but they couldnt make it to church (turned out to be a good thing with 4 people there...haha) We have been teaching this guy named Conrado. He was drunk when we knocked his door and his mom let us in. He had been drunk for like 2 months straight. But hasn´t drank for like a week and a half. We put a baptism date with him and he accepted but really likes the Catholic church so we are trying to help him come to ours so he can feel the spirit. Pray for us that we can teach good and find lots of people this week!!

I love you all soooooooo much and thanks for all the prayers!! Hope all is well!

Elder Eastmond

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