Friday, July 29, 2011

26 de Julio

Hey hey hey!
haha Mom I loved how you started out your letter screaming the church is true. I hope you know that I definately agree. The stories you shared with me about girls camp and EFY and stuff were way awesome! I love to hear all your special spiritual experiences! They are awesome! I will send the primary kids a letter for sure! I just want to get a picture with these 5 kids getting baptized all wearing them! Thank you for getting that recipe and the journal! You are the best!
So we had some complications yesterday with the bus schedule and a pday in another city so thats why im emailing today...
The packages turned out great. no nosy postmen as far as I could tell. Theres a picture, is it all there? Yes, I did get the card.
The week was pretty awesome! The most exciting parts were
1. President is letting us get bikes! we will be 1 of the 2 areas in the whole mission to be allowed bikes! Yay! haha only 4 out of 190 missionaries in our mission have bikes and I get to be one of them! Elder Huston was a professional mountain biker so hes twice as excited as I am!
2. Uruguay took home the Copa America! It was quite the party. The ENTIRE country was in the plazas, in the streets, waving flags, honking horns, shooting off fireworks, instant parades formed in every downtown. It was quite the experience! It was impossible to get any missionary work done so we just walked to the plaza and got some cool pictures and enjoyed the fiesta for a couple minutes.
3. We will have a baptism on sunday!! all 5 are good to go and they are all ready and excited!
Ok yeah thats pretty much all the exciting parts.
Its heating up a little. The Branch is doing great. It was awesome to read what president Stephens wrote. That was so nice of him and I felt really happy inside. haha no but really. that was a very kind compliment. He is an awesome branch president. He has literally saved the church in Cardona. It wouldnt exist anymore if he hadnt come and saved it. They were thinking about shutting it down. Its now a pretty strong branch! Did you know he played football for Utah State? and he met his wife Sister Stephens who played tennis there. They´re awesome!
Caity Im so proud of you and your awesomeness. I wish I could see you cheer and give talks at girls camp! Thanks for writing me! I really love it so much hearing from you! You set a great example for your older brother haha
Tyler I know your all buff, tan, popular, and good at high school life. Duh. Your my little brother. haha its in your blood. but just remember always that you could be in some tiny little town in the middle of south america and none of that will matter anymore, noone will care, but you will need a strong testimony and you will learn the things that are way more important. ironic how that works.
I love this part of Elder Ballards talk "Small and Simple Things"

“Behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

“And the Lord God doth work by means to bring about his great and eternal purposes; and by very small means the Lord doth confound the wise and bringeth about the salvation of many souls.” (Alma 37:6–7.)

To illustrate, let me read from a letter written by one of our faithful sister missionaries, serving in South America, to her brother who had just received his mission call. She wrote:

“It’s really interesting with the people from the country—they are so quiet, timid, shy, and embarrassed. You are never sure exactly how much they understand. They will live and die in this small town. They are so poor and so simple and so childlike. They may never see a General Authority, never attend general conference, never go to BYU. They’ll never be Boy Scouts, never play basketball in a huge Church gym, never drive a car to stake conference, regional basketball finals, or anywhere. Many of the things we think about when we think of the Church—and take for granted—they may never see. [Now, the point.] But they have faith, they repent, they are baptized, they receive the Holy Ghost, and they renew their baptismal covenants each week when they partake of the sacrament. They pray and read the scriptures daily. They know God lives and that Christ is our Savior. And, I believe, they are going to the celestial kingdom. I do all the things they never will, but I’m not so sure about my own salvation.

“At first glance, the Church here looks absolutely nothing like the Church in downtown Orem, Utah. I have to keep reminding myself it is the same church and we all follow the same prophet. We have a sacrament meeting in the country each week because the members there really can’t afford to come into town. And as I sit there outside on a wooden chair on the plain ground, with the sun setting and the six people in attendance, as we sing hymns, pray, and partake of the sacrament, I wonder if that isn’t closer to Christ’s church than at home. But I guess it is really the same. The things that matter, the true elements of the gospel as Christ taught in 3 Nephi 11, are the same here as they are in Orem, Utah.”

I love you guys lots!

Take care thanks for your letters! they are so awesome! especially yours tyler!!



Monday, July 11, 2011

July 11, 2011

Hey Hey Hey!
Guess what Mom!? yes I did play in sacrament meeting. but not for the sacrament hymn because I had to lead while Elder Huston broke the bread. Then I jumped over and he blessed then I passed. It was way different! haha Elder Huston was presiding so I gave him the bread first! gotta love the mission! haha So yes. Sunday it was just me and Elder Huston. Juan got back from EFY in Buenos Aires Saturday but hes pretty sick. President Stephens gets back from the states tomorrow. President Heaton will even be here on sunday for the disciplinary council. We have been having soccer on Saturday afternoons for all the youth and their friends, and then after soccer we bring them in the church and teach a lesson. 4 non member youth came to church on Sunday! And the coolest part was the members brought them without us even asking them to! Members are golden in missionary work! are you doing your part? your thinking arent you..haha
This week was pretty cool. We had a lesson with Jorge, and he never fails to impress me. This week we came to his door and the first thing he said was "DID YOU BRING IT!?" Elder Huston knew what he was talking about and we turned around and came back with a tithing envelope. I guess he had asked Elder Huston at church last sunday to stop by with a tithing envelope to help him fill it out and stuff. This man is really poor, really sick, really new in the church, but his faith and diligence is so inspiring! He is one of the VERY few tithe payers in the branch, and his nicest posesion is probably his MATE. haha. what a man! we asked him if he knew why we pay tithing and what it goes to. He said no, but that President Cabrera from the District presidency spoke on sunday about how it was a really important commandment, and that he wanted to obey all the commandments. We explained that the money goes to building churches, missionary work and things like that. I was just so impressed with his faith and desire to fulfill his baptismal covenants. After that lesson, Elder Huston and I almost at the exact same said hey Jorge can we get a picture with you? He may be really dirty and old and poor, but he is a bigger hero to me than any celebrity or sports star. Reminds me of a scripture I was reading today in 3 Nephi 13
  1. 19 Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and thieves break through and steal;
  2. 20 But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.
  3. 21 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
Another kinda awesome experience more on the funny side, we were bringing a bunch of youth to the church for a lesson on Saturday and a little van-bus thing was parked on the street on the way. All of the sudden like 4 kids ran out and started coming with us and like hugging me and Elder Huston. I recognized them as grandkids of a family in the branch that come to church pretty often. A lady comes out of the bus with like a nice suit on and calls them back. I had no idea who they were but we told the kids they should probably be with them if thats where their parents thought they were. Turns out it was another church! The kids were like fighting to come with us and almost crying, like grabbing our legs begging us to let them come with us. It was SO AWKWARD!!!! haha look! they obviously like our church better lady! haha no...but its cool how even little kids know whats up.
Yes, I am getting used to the season changes. I feel like im 100% used to living in Uruguay now. Not excited for summer to come though! I hope im in the south for the summer! Its starting to warm up a little this week. Its a perfect day today!
So we talked to the post office in Cardona, turns out that package is probably headed back your way. I think they are sending back anything that gets here. so if anyone reading this is planning on sending a letter. hold it for a little. or just send it through the mission email adress. so frustrating and a real bummer!
Yes MOM! I should have kept going with piano! It was awesome to hear about Oregon!
Its been rough in Cardona with the work. I have a great companion but sometimes he just doesnt have the excitement, the drive. He is such a great guy though! I want to help him get more excited about the mission and the work but its so hard. Our numbers are horrible. I feel like I teach all the lessons. I pray hard for help, for patience. Any advice? Elder Huston is still a stud though! His Dad played BYU football! His Grandpa was the BYU basketball coach that had cancer! He is a professional mountain biker and is a awesome guy!
I want to see pictures from Oregon!
Well, I gotta go.
Take care! Love you guys!
Elder Kellis