Monday, April 24, 2017

March 20, 2017 -- Fun in the City

Hey guys thanks for your emails, here's my week!!❤ 

Monday- Monday was a good relaxing P-Day๐Ÿ˜Œ We just woke up and emailed and I got to chat with Dal for the first time in awhile so that was cool. Then we went to the post office and then went grocery shopping. After that we went to this place called the strip district and its basically just a bunch of street venders selling random stuff downtown. It's where you can buy like super cheap stealers gear and what not. There was actually a super cool candy store kinda like Judd's candy store back home, it was cool. I resisted buying anything because it was all junk haha after that we went to the church to play basketball and volleyball with the other missionaries in the area. On our drive over there we saw these self-driving Uber Cars!! ๐Ÿš—๐Ÿš• They are super cool, they have like this big spinning detector thing on top of the car that senses the traffic and traffic signs and pedestrians and all that and it just drives itself. They are just testing them out here in Pittsburgh but we saw like 3 of them, it was pretty sweet. Then we went to dinner at the Reyes house๐ŸŒฎ I love that family so much!! They make us chicken and rice every week and then they bring out a stack of corn tortillas to eat it with and it's just so perfect haha the English Elders came with us too and it was super funny because the whole time they had no idea what we were talking about. Brother Reyes gave one of them this super spicy salsa and the Elder's face turned super red but he wouldn't admit that it was hot ๐Ÿ˜‚ So we started making fun of him in Spanish and it was the funniest thing lol. It was good! I got to do the spiritual thought//FHE lesson for them that night and it went well and afterwards Sister Reyes gave us a referral for one of her friends that's super interested! After dinner and FHE with the Reyes, we went to ESL class and helped out there and then we went home. 

At the Driving Range on P-Day :) 

Tuesday- On Tuesday we tried some people in the morning and we were able to have a few conversations just through the door but it was terrible because it was freezing and snowing๐ŸŒจ Then we went to a lesson with our investigator, Jim, and it actually went pretty well. He opened up to us a little bit so we were able to learn more about him and how to address his needs and concerns. Then later that afternoon we had our first real lesson with Dorothy! So she was the referral that we contacted last week who requested a Book of Mormon and a Bible and so went by this week and she had been reading both and she read the Restoration pamphlet!! No one ever actually does that! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ So we went over the pamphlet with her and taught her the Restoration in depth, then we asked her to pray about the Book of Mormon. She said that she already knows that it's true because when she was younger she said that she knew that the Bible was missing stuff so obviously it would make sense that there would be additional scripture on the Earth. If everybody were as open and reasonably minded as Dorothy, then missionary work would be tons easier lol. So then I said "Well if you've come to know that the Book of Mormon is true, then are you willing to follow the commandments and teachings given to us in it?" And she said "well of course" Then shared 3 Nephi 18 about meeting together oft and we invited her to church and she said she'd be there!  She has some things that we would have to overcome in the future but we will work with her! It was a good lesson though๐Ÿ’ and afterwards she offered us a drink from the party drawer in the fridge so I grabbed a Dos Equis to celebrate a successful lesson๐Ÿฅ‚๐Ÿพ ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ After that we went to go contact an investigator who had a Baptism Date awhile back but he wasn't home and his wife answered but she was acting all awkward and suspicious so we aren't sure what's going on there๐Ÿ˜… Then we went to Panera Bread for dinner and then we went to Janet's house to share a message with her and she committed to give a talk in the Spanish group on Easter Sunday! So it was good. 
At one of the local parks in Pittsburgh -- They have great equipment!! Yikes!!!

Wednesday- On Wednesday we played basketball in the morning and then we went and poured cement for service for like 3 hours then we went to Days for Girls which was more service. Days for Girls was actually really fun on Wednesday because it's just a group of missionaries and older ladies eating snacks and sewing hahaha. After that we went to go contact a couple people before our lesson with Wilbur, our investigator. We ended up finding an older less active lady who lived in the same apartment complex as one of our potential Spanish investigators, so we talked to her for a second and she had just enough time to share her entire conversion story with us just like every other LDS member in PA lol. She seemed lonely though so maybe that's where the Lord needed us and it worked out super good because afterwards we went to go try and find one more Hispanic family before our lesson with Wilbur and Wilbur was actually at this family's home! He was just about to head to his house to meet us there for our lesson but we ran into him at this other house haha it seems like all the hispanics in Pittsburgh are friends and hang out with each other. But we ended up teaching Wilbur at that house as well as the other guy that we were originally going to find named Manuel so it all worked out! And Wilbur was actually able to open up more about his situation because he wasn't at home with us in front of his family. So he explained how he's trying his best to raise a family of 5 kids in a crazy world and how his oldest kids are disobedient. So we told him how the Gospel can help his family and stressed the importance of church attendance to help him. It was a good lesson! 
Looking good covered in cement dust!! 

Thursday- On Thursday we went to a lesson with a Less Active named Nicola and had a good spiritual message with her about finding a desire to repent and then we went to pour more cement for service๐Ÿ˜ค My hair was completely grey afterwards haha pouring cement is terrible. After that we went home and did weekly planning and got ready for Zone Conference the next day. 

Friday- On Friday we had Zone Conference allll day. I like Zone Conferences alright but 9AM - 4:30PM is a long meeting. President showed us the Easter Initiative video and its pretty cool! It's called #PrinceOfPeace. I don't like it quite as much as #LightTheWorld but it's still pretty cool. After Zone Conference we rushed over to the church for a lesson with our investigator, Jorge. We had Raymond, who is a recent convert himself, team up with us for the lesson and it went really well. We taught the Restoration pretty in depth and Raymond was a great help. It's always cool seeing 2 native Spanish speakers talk to each other in lessons. At the end of the lesson we invited him to come to church on Sunday and we already knew that he doesn't work on Sunday's but he said he wasn't sure if could come because it was going to be cold and stuff and I was like dude you're here right now! ๐Ÿ˜‚ and it was snowing outside! Like we were legit sitting in the church during a blizzard and he said he wasn't sure if he would be able to come and then after talking to him for a second he realized that he was totally capable of going and said that he would go haha. Hispanics all have this insane fear of church, I don't understand it at all. 

Saturday- On Saturday we played basketball again and then we rushed back home and got ready because we had a lesson at 9 AM with an Investigator named Kayla. She said 9AM on Saturday was the only time that she could meet so we were fine to go and it ended up being a really good lesson! We answered all of her questions and referred her to some scriptures and taught the Restoration. She is excited to learn more so we set up a return appointment and invited her to church and she said that she would really try and go. After the lesson we went home and did our studies and things and then we went and tried some Spanish part member families that live on the edge of the border of the farthest area that we cover so it was a super long car ride and I had to drive and it was pretty boring and the families didn't even end up being home so it was kind of a waste, then we were supposed to have a lesson with another investigator named India but she canceled too. We did end up having a lesson with our other investigator named Erica and it went well and she said that she really wants to go to church on Sunday so we are excited for her๐Ÿ˜‹ Then we went to our dinner appointment at the Cรกrdenas house and it was good๐ŸŒฎ then we went to Wilburs house because his daughter was really sick and had been in the hospital. We visited with the family for a second and then gave the daughter a blessing. They aren't members but we figured that them seeing the priesthood being used couldn't be a bad thing ha. It was my first anointing in Spanish and it was Elder Hall's first blessing in Spanish too, on the way to their house we were trying to find priesthood ordinances in Spanish on Gospel library but it's hard because there's no missionary handbook in Spanish so we had to download the Administering the Church Handbook in Spanish to figure out how to do it haha but we did! And it all worked out! ๐Ÿ˜‚ Then we drove home and it took 10 years because Liberty Bridge is closed ๐ŸŒ‰ ๐Ÿ˜… 
The oldest soda machine in Pittsburgh! Sporting the nice Anakin, Gungun display :) 

Carter describes this as the "coolest soda machine ever. It's so sick!" 

Pic of Downtown

Sunday- On Sunday we just had studies in the morning then we called all of our investigators and less actives to try and get them to church. This is one of the benefits of having 1 o clock church as a missionary hahaha. Despite all of our efforts and a good amount of investigators, we only got one to church but it was Jorge! And it was super good that he came! It was his first time so we were excited for him. The only way for him to come was if he came like an hour early but we didn't care so we told him to come anyways so Elder Halls and Elder Condie gave him a tour of the whole chapel and hung out with him while I attended Ward Council before church. This is another benefit of the trio lol. Then we had our normal church meetings and they were all really good and it was fun to have Jorge there and all the members in the Spanish branch introduced themselves to him and stuff. During Sacrament meeting one of the Members of the Stake High Council came to give a talk but he didn't speak Spanish so Elder Hall's translated for him live into Spanish for the Spanish branch and it was super cool! I was really impressed, I want my Spanish to reach the same level that his has reached. I'm learning a ton everyday though! After church we straight up went to Arkham Asylum๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ ๐Ÿ˜ˆ☠️๐Ÿ‘ฝ๐Ÿ‘ป I live in Gotham because the Dark Knight was filmed here and we went to the Psych Ward so I think it classifies as Arkham Asylum. One of the members of the Spanish branch was admitted there a couple weeks ago because she's been having some serious mental problems so we went to take her the Sacrament. They don't mess around there though, in order for us to go in we had to leave pretty much everything behind and we had to take our ties off and all we could really bring with us was the bread for the Sacrament. She was on the 12th floor so they have a pretty decent view of the city and when we got up there, there were like 4 patients just staring out the windows but it was kinda scary I don't know how to explain it. The patients aren't allowed to wear shoes and most of them are super super skinny and it's just kinda sad and scary. There was one guy that was just roaming the halls screaming at everybody and then there was another lady that came up and actually started talking to us. She had visited with missionaries back in the day so she told us to go to our house and told us her address like 5 different times but I was like "don't you live here?" And she was like "no, what makes you say that?" Then I looked down and she wasn't wearing shoes and she had a patient's robe on. So I said "Idk I just figured you did." Then she replied "Nah, I'm just here for today" so Elder Halls said, "well what brings you here then?" And she said "umm you guys!" And at this point she is standing about as close to me as you can get like stomach to stomach hahahaha it was crazy but it was so funny because she was in complete denial about the fact that she lived there like she hadn't accepted it yet. Eventually we were able to give our member the Sacrament and she was acting pretty normal so it was good. Then we stopped by and saw Harley Quinn and Scarecrow on the way out and called it a day๐Ÿ’ After that we went to our dinner appointment and it was pretty far away but it was good!๐Ÿ˜‹ Then that was it for Sunday. I have started writing these at the end of each day so that's why there is a lot more pointless detail๐Ÿ˜‚ This week went by super fast, it was freezing all week though and it snowed like 5/7 days๐ŸŒจ I was jealous of all you guys on spring break๐Ÿ˜… I am craving warm weather☀️  I'll go respond to your guys emails when I get a chance!! I love and miss you all๐Ÿ’™

-Elder Nelson

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