Thursday, October 27, 2011

Man this is one of the greatest transfers of the mission! Elder
Olivares and I have been tearin it up real good ova herr. Its crazy
how tranquilo it is out here in the campo. Theres no cars, motos, or
movement. Just two horses from the neighbors mowing our grass for us
and a bunch of missionary work!

Juan and Dolores are doing pretty good. I am a little worried about
them just cuz they are having lots of problems financial, maridal, at
work, quiting tobaco. We are praying a LOT for them. Its hard to have
spiritual lessons because his alcoholic uncle always comes over and
doesnt let us talk. The other night we were over there talking about
the sabbath day and their super cute little daughter, covered in mud
and barefoot said that they couldnt go to church with their parents
because they dont have shoes. Its sad because they both have brand new
nice cell phones and a new dvd player, but their kids are barefoot. me
da pena. :( Virginia, Dolores´ sister was in a lot of pain with a
urinary infection. Its sad because they literally use the woods as
thier bathroom. She is a incredible little girl for the family
situation she lives in. She has a lot of faith and a lot of love. She
is only 9 but is very very mature and smart. She asked us to pray for
her and we told her we could give her a blessing. Its really special
to stand around a little girl in a box house of metal sheets with a
garbage bag roof and pronounce priesthood miracles. I felt the spirit
so strong and I know she did tool. After the blessing she was crying.

Sunday we had a fun time getting all muddy. Its been raining since
saturday. So Sunday morning we left for stake conference in basketball
shorts and tshirts. We got completely soaked and muddy. We got on the
rented church bus and went with the driver to pick up a couple members
and investigators. I got off the bus and ran to knock on a family´s
door, but i didnt notice the wire fence without wood stakes and
totally clotheslined myself. It was so funny but hurt really bad haha.
I totally face planted in a pile of mud a horse poo pie. I looked
around and the only person that saw me was the bus driver. Elder
Olivares said he died laughing and said to my companion hahahha! THE

We had an awesome stake conference and Elder Bradley Foster of the 70
presided. I shook his hand, thanked him for his talk and he came and
shook our investigators hand. Daniella, a 21 yr old new mom who has a
bunch of problems in her family and with her husband came. The topic
of the conference was temples, marriage, and family. Sweet huh!

This week is gonna be crazy! I hope everything comes out as planned.
Its not gonna be easy but I know we will see some miracles.

Tuesday we had interviews with President Heaton. My favorite part was
Sister Heaton´s cinamon rolls. The stake president came and talked to
the zone and told us to have lots of patience with the members here.
That we are used to a different world of mormonism and 1/2 the members
here if you ask them cant tell you what the atonement is. He asked us
to love and help them. It was great to be with President Heaton even
though it was only for a couple minutes. Poor old guy stays so busy!

Mom, the relief society down here is a lot different. I cant tell you
how many times I have seen a sister get a huge bag of clothes together
for a family or investigator that dont have much. They dont get
together very much, or have presidency meetings. Sometimes they do
visiting teaching. They dont really do all the organized stuff but
they love and serve a lot.

I love you all so much! Cuidense mucho les quiero!

Monday, October 3, 2011

From: Daniel Kellis 
Date: Mon, Oct 3, 2011 at 9:46 AM
Subject: Craziest Week of my mission life

Hey so Im alive! haha man its been quite the crazy week! Im excited to tell you all about it and all about my new area and companion.
So the zone leaders always call us on Monday nights of transfer week. Tuesday is P-day (mostly for packing and stuff) and Wednesday is travel day. Tuesday we said goodbye to everyone and made tacos with a family (they didnt like them at all because they were too spicy...I think they got kinda mad) haha
So there isnt really any direct busses from Cardona to anywhere, you have to go to Colonia first. So we left Tuesday night from Cardona, took two busses to get to Colonia. my bus to Salto was gonna leave at 5am Wednesday. The missionaries in Colonia on transfer night always have a full house because everyone from the little towns in Colonia come in to wait for their bus. Well, right when we got to Colonia the zone leaders let us know that a bus strike had just started. So we left Colonia and the Senior couple brought us to another companionships house with extra matresses. We stayed the night there (all my bags and everything were in the other house still) and I was out of money for the month. (no food) so we just cleaned their church and worked in their area for the day. It was funny, we did a joke with some recent converts that I was the new missionary coming into their ward and that I was brand new and didnt speak Spanish.
Wednesday night the strike ended and I was able to get on the bus to Salto at 5am Thursday. So I was on that bus alone for a while (which is super weird) until a SIster Missionary got on half way to Salto in Fray Bentos. That was even more weird. She was super flirty from Chile. My comp greated me in the Salto Terminal. He seems super cool. He is from Lima Peru. He was recently trained in this area. We took a taxi to our house and I started getting confused as we left the city for about 10 minutes into the wilderness towards artigas. We drove down a dirt road for about 5 minutes and we passed a couple houses on the way super spread out with huge citrus orchards and green houses between each house. There was a house out in the middle of nowhere that we pulled into. We`re here! 
So our branch is only about a year old. It has about 60 active members and they are all recent converts. The church has been in Salto for many many years but Elders opened the area im in to missionary work about a year and a half ago. We have a huge handful of investigators and they all work in the orchards and green houses. Every lesson we go to is about a 15 minute bike ride on bumpy dirt roads. Im definataly physically getting used to that! Especially with these piece of junk bikes! The pedals are broken, theres no brakes or shocks and the only gear that works is the lowest one so im always pedaling super fast to go super slow. But its all worth it because the people out here are amazing. There is a bus that picks everybody up each sunday and brings them all the the little rented house that we use as a church. I definately am used to being out in the middle of nowhere but I feel stupid for ever complaining about having to take an hour and a half bus ride to district meeting in Cardona because now its a 40 minute bike ride (8 Km-i dont know how many miles that is) to the closest bus stop with then takes us to the stake center on a 20 minute bus ride. The closest place to buy food is about a 20 minute bike ride. Which isnt too bad. Its just the dirt roads and the bike that kill me. Im gonna be super in shape though! haha The house we live in is actually only a year old so it is in decent condition.
There was a HUGE storm on friday. We rode our bikes through this one spot in the trails where the water was up to almost the top of my bike tires. I just got off and walked it. I was impressed with Elder Olivares. He didnt think twice about crossing it to get to that lesson. He loves our investigators so much. He is an incredible young kid. He is super obedient and super strong. Hes been a member for 3 years and has about 3 months in the mission. He could be a trainer already. I took a shower with all my clothes on because I was completely drenched in muddy water. We came into town to watch conference at the stake center, and stayed in another Elders house. Two nights on the ceramic floor with diaheria and a fever and super sore legs. The conference was incredible and just what I needed to hear. President Uchtdorf`s talk brought tears to my eyes as I felt the love of God through all the suffering. It was such an incredible conference. I love how the talked alot about missionaries and the work. I started thinking about Tyler and imagined him in a white shirt and tie with a name tag here in Uruguay out in the orchards on a bike and I just started crying. It is such an incredible experience to be here doing this work and I love it so much. I love Tyler so much and thinking of him receiving these blessings was super emotional for me.
I know the work we are doing is the work of God and that it may not be easy but it is so important. I cant wait to start another week in the best two years.
Elder Daniel Kellis
La Mision Montevideo Oeste
Enrique Martinez 1167
Montevideo Uruguay CP 11.800