Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Agato....A Cat

Hello Boyz and Girlz! Zowee do we have a special treat for you today!  Hey! We have a bran new email! Your the first kids....This email is LOADED with all sorts of stuff that good for you, and do you know what we call it!?!?!?!  Mormon-O´s!!!!!!

Hey I thought youd like a little waker upper.  Well, this week has been very different from the ones Ive recently had in the past.  This week was my first week BACK in Otavalo and it almost feels like I never left.  A bunch of natives with their long braided hair, quichua, and chicken/potato soup!  So this new sector is about 15 minutes south of my last one in Otavalo and there are way more hills here!  Another thing is that this sector is very DUSTY.  I leave the house with semi black shoes, and come home with a decently thick layer of dust.  I love it.

So I bet you are wondering how Ive been with my first gringo companion.  Its been a ball!  To be honest, he is a mix of my cousins Corey and Brandon with a little bit of an asian kid.  We get along really great and we laugh a lot quoting movies and youtube segments.  We have a ball.  We get really weird looks too.  The people here think its weird that a latino and a gringo walk together, but now its like a gringo and an asian gringo walking together.  You should see their faces!

In this sector we have our work cut out for us.  There arent too many people here in the first place and not many people are receptive.  Its mostly due to the evangelical church near here that basically commands its members that they cannot even speak to people of other religions.  We do have a few investigator though that should start to progress: Veronica, Vladimir, and Wilker.  I barely know them, but I will soon and help them on their path to Christ.

I also am able to associate with one of the best members that I have ever met.  His name is Luis and he was baptized in 1996.  He gives us lunch every Tuesday and cooks to our hearts desire!  We also got to his house everynight because he needs to kinda be checked on so he isnt tempted to go drink. And we need to use his phone :)  He is very skilled with fabrics and makes ties, scripture cases,and other really cool things to sell to the missionaries.  He also has the walls in his house COVERED with photos of misionaries.  He is always willing to help us and gives us lots of references to work with!  I would hope that we all could be like this with the missionaries to help the work of the Lord.  

This week I read something really striking to me in Preach My Gospel.  It is in chapter 9 in the section IMPORTANCE OF MEMBERS.  I would encourage all of us to read and apply this section.  We should not leave everything up to the missionaries.  Yes, we can do it all, but the work is SO much easier when we have the help and support of the members.  

I know that if we can all help in this great work, we will be able to find greater happiness in our lives.  I know that this Church is true, and I know that it is the ONLY way to get back to our Father in Heaven.  I love being a missionary in Ecuador!!!

Elder Lomeli

Gets a little cold here

Elder Barnes is a little crazy haha

Monday, May 18, 2015

Goodbye and Hello Again!

Welcome one and all, to the 34th weekly email, of Elder Travin Lomeli, Missionary of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.  Speakers were selected from general authortities and general officers of Elder Lomeli´s brain.  Members of the contact list have come from all areas of the world, to recieve and email and report from Elder Lomeli.  Music for this session, provided by your personal playlist.

Well everyone, now that we have yet again completed another very fast week, time for another one.  This week as a little bit slow in Carapungo, but we were able to visit with a lot of people at least once so that Elder Yañez could say goodbye.  When we visited with a recent rescue, Roger, he was completely crying his eyes out.  Ironic becuase just last week he explained to us how he never cries and thinks crying isnt worth the pain.  Just made me realize how big of an impact we can be on people in so short a time.  He almost made us cry too.

So when Sunday night came, I wasnt too worried at all for the changes.  But when we got the call, they told me that I would be going to Agato, which is in Otavalo.  I was only out of here for a month and a half and now Im back.  I am about 10 minutes away from my old sector in Iluman and it feels really weird to be back.  And to top it off, my new companion is Elder Barnes who is from my group and from West Haven (by Ogden).  He is not only my first gringo comp, but he is my first companion not from Peru haha.  

We are going to work hard to find people to teach and baptize.  And if I can get permission, I will go see Tupak and see how he is doing!  I never got a picture with him, and now Im way close so I will do my best.  

Something that we shared with a lot of members this week really hit me.  It was a scripture that is very famous in the missionary work.  It is 3 Nephi 5:13: Behold, I am a disciple of Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I have been called of him to declare his word among his people, that they might have everlasting life.  

This is the purpose of all of us here on the earth, not just the missionaries.  Try to look for the experiences to help others achieve eternal life.  They are all around us.  It could just be as simple as saying Hi, but it makes a difference.  Show your faith by your example and others will want to be like you and ask you how.  I know that this work is true and Christ lives.  Go share it!

Elder Lomeli

Zona Calderon Este

Last visit with Roger

Monday, May 11, 2015

Mothers Day and a Borracho

Heyyo everyone!

I hope that all the mothers were able to have an amaz zuh zing day yesterday!  It was great to call home and see everyone´s smiling faces.  And for those of you who I didnt see, I bet you were smiling too.

Well this week was a lot of family finding.  I think that in total we are teaching 8 families, with 3 more that we still need to visit with.  They are all at different stages of progress, but this week the majority of them should have a baptismal date!  We are very excited to be able to teach the families, becuase there is support system to make the conversion to the Gospel easier.  Sadly, not one of them came to church becuase they were away visiting their mothers.  We have confidence they will come this week though.

Apart from being able to call home, Mothers Day was quite exciting.   As we were walking out of church to go to the mamitas house, we saw two drunks (borracho in spanish) on the corner.  One of them had his pants pulled all the way down doing some doo doo duty, and the other one was just mindlessly laughing.  We thought it was funny. Then as we passed them, they yelled "GRINGOS!!!" and started to walk after us.  Normally we can just keep walking and they will run into a pole and decide to stop, but these guys were different.  They first asked my companion to take him to church to talk with God and tried to say a prayer or something.  Then they cam to me and asked me the same thing.  I just tried to continue to ignore him, but that irritated him.  He started yelling in my ear and he had the Sammy Sprinkler effect so my ear was wet.  He then swung around and gave me a good old punch to the chest!  I was taken back by it and was about to retaliate.  But my companion stepped in at the precise moment and shoved the guy away.  They walked away and did nothing else.  But hey, not everyone can get punched by a drunk guy on their mission :)  Check that off the list!

Well thats about the majority of the week.  Elder Yañez is still working hard and not thinking too much about home.  He is excited to finally go to the temple after two years though.  The scripture them that Ive had in my mind this week is someting cool that Elder Yañez showed me in 1 Corinthians 9:14-18.  Go read it, especially to those that are preparing for a mission.  I know that this Gospel is true, and we will ALL be blessed if we ALL preach it!

Elder Lomel

We play futbol hard

The aftermath of the drunk guy :)  It was more red before

Our Mothers Day lunch

With two of our investigators Maria and Lupe and a FHE

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Conversión Personal

 **Monday Night Football Theme Music**

We welcome you back to yet another thrilling night of Missionary Football.  Our matchup tonight, The Elders from Utah against the Evasive Ecuadorians!  Who will win this matchup of two forces that are constantly against each other? Stay tuned to find out!  Kickoff is in 3 seconds!

Hey everyone!

Hows it going? This week absolutely FLEW!  We had a week of lot of ups and few downs and some real learning moments.    

 To start off, we had a Special Training with President Richardson on Tuesday.  He gave a really powerful lesson about our own personal conversion.  We need to strive to be converted if we have any desire to help other people become converted as well.  We need to get rid of our pride, be a STUDENT of the scriptures,  pour out our souls in prayer, and serve our neighbor with all our being.  These points really helped me realized that I need to  work a little more on myself before I can help others. President Richardson is such an inspirational man, and Im so glad to be able to learn from him.

We have been working pretty hard this week with some new families that we have found.  We have a family of two and they both have a baptismal date for the  16th of May!  Their names are both Maria (mother and daughter).  We took them for a tour of the chapel and they both really enjoyed it.  They just have a few troubles reading and recognizing the answers to their prayers. We have the faith that they will make it :)  We are also working with 4 other FAMILIES that have lots of questions and desires.  The only problem is that it is very evident that Satan is working very hard so that they dont come to church.  One family came though and they want to come back! 

We were doing our companionship prayer this week and it was my turn to say it.   I finish the prayer, but I never heard Elder Yañez say Amen. I look to him and he is sound asleep.  He stayed asleep like that  for another hour :) So funny.

  We have been talking to lots of people on the street this week.  But, we make it a big point to talk to families.  We contacted  5 families that were receptive and accepted and visit this week!  We had more success with the african american families.  They are way more chill and comfortable with talking to guys in white shirts and ties :)  We made some new friends this week and they said they have our backs and that we dont need to worry walking in the streets. They got us covered :)

 When Sunday rolled around,  we were able to have  6 investigators show up for chruch.  We also planned to do some missionary activities with the ward.  One investigator asked us to come to her house and help her son Frank who has been shut in his room for four years due to depression.  He is  18 and we have gained his confidence a little.  We explained the principle of our purpose in this life and just tried to be friends.  All of this was just talking through the door, but he accepted for us to come back!

FINAL (Elders win on a Hail Mary play to win 35- 28)
We were able to finish the week by rescuing a less active member named Roger.  He is 71 and he make the third rescue for us in the last three weeks! Yay!  We  had a great PDay playing volleyball and eating pizza as a district. Been a great week!

This Sunday is Dia de La Madre.  Probably one of the most importatnt days in the year.  I hope you all thank your mothers for all they have done and do.  Thanks Mom, I love you :) Thanks for helping me get out here on my mission!

I hope you all have a great week!   The scripture passages that I would invite all to read this week are Mosiah 2-4.  Really powerful General Conference in ancient times.  I think Conference was like that in the  80´s  so it looks like weve come a long way :) Hasta luego!

Elder Lomeli