Monday, June 19, 2017

May 29 - Dorothy gets baptized!

Hey guys here's my week!   

Monday- On Monday we went to Jamba Juice in the morning and got smoothies for breakfast. I got a secret menu item called the the "Fruity Pebble" smoothie and it was really good. Then we went over to some of the other Elders apartment and hung out with them for awhile. Because my companions were getting transferred, they had to send a lot of emails and we had to make a bunch of quick runs to the store and stuff. Later that day, we went over to the church for a little bit and played indoor soccer and a couple last games of basketball. Then we headed to Dinner, we went with some members named the Ballards. We met them at this place called Bull River Taco and it was okay but not my favorite. Then we went to ESL class and we actually had a super big group so that was fun! Then we went over to the Reyes so that Elder Halls and Condie could say goodbye. It was kind of sad but the Reyes were happy that I get to stay at least🤷‍♀️ 

Tuesday- On Tuesday my companions finished packing and then we went and visited Dorothy so that Elder Condie and Elder Halls could say goodbye and that was pretty sad. Then we went to Olive Garden for one last lunch as a trio. We did the unlimited soup salad and breadstick special and it was only $6.99 and it was delicious. I'd recommend it  Then we went to the church in GreenTree for transfers and Elder Condie and Elder Halls left and I picked up Elder Herzog. Then Elder Herzog and I headed back to the apartment and dropped off his luggage then we went to the grocery store and grabbed some stuff for the week real quick and then we got right to work. We went and saw Belle, a less active, who just had her baby. But she's going through one of the most difficult situations ever and she just told us all about it and I had no idea what to say. I was trying to follow the spirit and stuff but it was beyond missionary control, so I referred her to talk to the Bishop and she said she would so we gave her his number. After that we went to Erica's house and taught her a little bit. She went to church last week but she said she didn't feel super comfortable because it's hard for her to be baptized without the support of her family and the lesson at church was about the importance of baptism. I could understand where she was coming from. We just invited her to keep coming and told her that God would create a way for her and she said she would keep coming for the first hour at least. After that lesson we went to Jorge's and finished going through the baptismal interview questions with him and talked to him more about the standards of the gospel and why we live them. It actually went really well! Then we came back home for dinner. 

The Trio says goodbye to Dorothy.
Wednesday-  On Wednesday we went and taught Dorothy in the morning and it went super well! She actually filled out the back Study section of the pamphlets and wrote down all of her answers on a separate piece of paper and gave it to me. And all of her answers were 100% correct! It was kind of cool cause I'm the one who's taught her all of this stuff haha. After that, we went to do service at Days for Girls and that was good. Elder Herzog has actually served in Pittsburgh before so he used to go to Days for Girls like 10 months ago so the ladies remembered him. After service, we went to the church to have a lesson with this referral named Juan. It was terrible. He had no interest in learning about our spiritual beliefs, he just wanted to know what our church would do for him if he were an illegal immigrant and needed papers. He couldn't believe that the church wouldn't hire lawyers to help a someone getting deported who was a member. And then I explained to him that if word got out that the church were to hire lawyers for someone who was an illegal immigrant then every illegal immigrant on the street would come join then church just for that reason. He didn't believe it and just kept telling us that in his church they would do everything possible for every illegal immigrant and I was just like that's great, you go back to your church then. I was getting so upset because he told me I would never know what it's like to be illegal and all this stuff so I can't relate to the people here or actually grow to love them. I'm happy to never see that guy again. After that "lesson" we went to the Reyes house for dinner.(An illegal family that I absolutely love) and we had a good time with them, it's super fun to joke around with them and the food is always delicious. We had a spiritual thought with the kids and I told them they had to read a certain chapter in the Book of Mormon then tell me what it was about at church and I would have a prize for them haha. Then after that we went to a lesson with a less active that I had never met before but she was super cool. She's a convert to the church of a couple years and she's covered in tattoos and piercings like the "tattooed Mormon" or whatever. It was just kind of cool to talk to someone who's different from the rest and she has a strong testimony too. Then I came home and got my package with cookies from home so I enjoyed a couple. 

Thursday- On Thursday, we went and played basketball in the morning  it was fun with our new group here. Then we went and showered and stuff then went to District Meeting and that was good. Then we had another lesson with Dorothy(we had to do Daily Contact with her baptism on Saturday) and it went well! She keeps giving me recipes to try and make because I gave her some of the Banana bread I made last week and she loved it so now she assumes I'm a chef  After that lesson we had a lesson with the Lizarraga family but we couldn't find a team-up to come with us and we wouldn't be able to enter the house without a male member. We didn't want to cancel the lesson by any means and it was raining so we couldn't meet outside. So we were struggling and then we got the idea to take a priest out with us so I called Margarita(lady from the Spanish group) and asked if her son was home  and if he could come out with us. I knew beforehand that if you ask a strong Hispanic mom if her son can go out with the missionaries then she's going to send him regardless of anything else going on hahaha so we went and picked up her son Abinadi. He was quiet at first but then he opened up to us and it was super good to have him and he plans on serving a mission and stuff too. So we had the lesson with the Lizarragas and it went perfect! Then we went to dinner and just took Abinadi with us because the member who was taking us out to dinner was super good family friends with Abinadi and lives next door. So we all went and ate and then he went home with the member so it all worked out super good! We went to that same middle-eastern restaurant that had the super good Philly cheesesteaks  the guy that works there is my homie, he took us to the back where they keep all the meet and showed us how fresh it was and then he gave me a bunch of free samples haha so it was fun. But then the saddest thing ever happened. We were leaving the restaurant we were parked on a busy street so I set my iPad and my to-go box on top of the car while trying to get in without getting hit by incoming traffic. I grabbed my to-go box and set it in the back of the car and then I saw a car coming and I didn't want it to rip my door off or hit me so I hurried and got in the drivers seat. (Leaving my iPad on top of the car) then I started to drive off, I got about a 50 yards and I was like wait... where's my iPad?! And at that very moment I saw it fall off the car in the rear view window so I stopped the car and ran outside and grabbed it and it was shattered   I'm such an idiot I hate myself. So now my iPad is cracked pretty bad but it still works and everything. After that sad story we went to the Dushku's house for a correlation meeting and figured out some final things for the baptism and stuff and then we went home. Funniest part about Thursday was that I read the story about Nephi breaking his bow during my personal study that day.   

Friday- On Friday, we tried to see a couple less actives in the morning but there was no answer so then we went and tried a couple potential investigators and got a return appointment with one of them who said she was interested ✔️ Then we went back to the apartment and weekly planned. Then we had an early dinner with some members and it was good to be in their home because the husband is less active but we had a good time with him. After that we went to go try a few hispanics near the church and we actually had super good luck. We got a return appointment with a Guatemalan family! And we met 2 other new Hispanic men who said we should talk again soon but didn't actually set a return appointment with us. Then we went to ESL class and then we tried a couple more people afterwards but they weren't home. But in the same apartment complex that we were trying, we met 2 more guys from Guatemala haha so we talked to them for awhile and one of the guys used to build LDS church's in Guatemala for his job but he didn't seem super interested ha. 

Saturday- BAPTISM! On Saturday we had a baptism!! Dorothy got dunked! Woohoo! 

Dorothy's baptism with Elder Herzog! 

But to start the day, we went and played basketball in the morning and it was a good time. Then we went and made the programs for Dorothy's Baptism and it reminded me how much I hate Word and computers in general. Everything is so complicated. But we finally made it look good so we printed those out and got a couple other things ready and then we headed back to the apartment. We called Dorothy to make sure she was all ready and she was in tears because her 2 best friends couldn't go but I tried my best to comfort her over the phone but I was already kinda stressed out myself trying to make sure everything was good with the actual service. Buttt everything went prefect!! We had lots of support from the Ward at the service and everybody did great. President and Sister Johnson came too. I had the opportunity to baptize her and then afterwards Dorothy bore her testimony and she did super good! Then we had refreshments and stuff, she was so dang happy. After the service we went to our dinner appointment with the Pineda family and that was good! Hermana Pineda told me that my Spanish was "bastante bien" getting compliments from natives is always nice. After dinner we went back to the church to make sure that everything got cleaned up after the baptism. Then we took some of the left over refreshments to some less actives in our area and they were actually super grateful that we were thinking about them. Sunday- On Sunday, we went to church and the Spanish group was combined with the English Ward which actually worked out good because we had to confirm Dorothy! So that went well, then afterwards I had to translate the talks to English for the Reyes family during Sacrament meeting.   it's exhausting. The Reyes kids wrote me letters about what they read in the Book of Mormon and they are pretty funny   I'll send a pic of them. After church, we went and tried some Hispanic houses in the area but we didn't have a ton of luck. We came to one apartment building that has doorbells for every apartment on the front and Elder Herzog just pressed all of them at once haha and like 3 different people stuck their head at the window saying "who? What do you want?" And Elder Herzog was just like "Hello! We are messengers sent from God!" then the 2 put their heads back in and the last lady was just like "uhh huh yeah have a good day." I was dying laughing    I think you had to be there. After that we came back to the apartment and had dinner. Then we went to what was supposed to be a part member family's house but this guy from Mexico City lived there. He was sitting outside on his porch and he just starting talking to us in Spanish without realizing it and then we responded in Spanish and he was like "esperen¿ hablan español¿" and we were like "de hecho, sí"   anyways this guy was super cool and I had a full on conversation with him for like an hour. I think I'm close to "Pittsburgh fluent" as far as Spanish goes. But we talked to him forever and he was so chill and we gave him a Book of Mormon and set up a time to come back. He said he would find the address for the lady that used to live their for us too! It was good. Then we went to the Columbians house but they weren't home so we went to Sergio's house and he was home but at that point it was like 8:50. He let us in and we taught a 10- minute version of the Restoration and invited him to pray about it and to come to church and we got home before 9:30   And that was pretty much it! So this week was good and bad! I shattered my iPad! We had a baptism! We had a lesson with a racist immigrant! We found new investigators! so yeah.. Elder Herzog is my new companion and he's great ha he's just super chill. He's from American Fork and he's 21 years old and he's been out for 21 months so he goes home soon. He's been in a lot of English areas so he's trying to get his Spanish back but he's doing good! Well that's my week! I'll send pictures later. ️ ️ 

I love and miss you guys!! Happy Memorial Day! 


-Elder Nelson

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