Monday, March 29, 2010

2659 Miles, 20 people in a truck at 50 MPH

Que lo que familia!

This week was a good one! Another frustrating several days with spanish. Elder Espinola got on a couple of them members because they were talking super fast and super gangsta and he knew that I couldnt understand so he told them to talk more slowly and with more inteligence. I thought it was funny. He definently has my back. I feel bad for the kid. He has to be so tired of working with me haha but I am so grateful for him!

This week Joselito was baptized. He wasnt quite ready to cut his hair (as you can see in the pictures) but he is alreadying leaving with us and helping us to share the gospel. It is really good because everyone knows him and can see the change in his heart and they really want to see that change too. Miguelina was supposed to be baptized this week but she didnt pass her interview and was acting funny all week before the interview. Yesterday when we went to visit her she completely broke down and told us why she couldnt get baptized. She has cancer in her vigina and it cost 25000 pesos to do the surgery. She lives in a house that isnt even finished. They dont have doors and the house isnt even enclosed. There is no way she can get that money and she says that if a man comes aroudn with more money she is going to have to be forced to live with him so she cant complete with the commandments right now. It was so hard to hear. I didnt understand everything she was saying but seeing her so upset made me so sad. I let a few tears go. Yikes. She has such a strong testimony but just doesnt have hope. I can totally understand her but so hard. We are going to keep working with her.

Good news! We finally receieve the papers we needed to marry the family that i told you about before (Cabral) They are in the picture with the tin house. She had to go and pick up 2 more of her kids this week so now 5 people live in that house. It is smaller than my room back home. They are scheduled to have their baptism this sat.

Funning story of the week... we were visiting a member and I said a sentence and everyone just starting cracking up and my comp had soda coming out of his nose. Apparently I said that people were having sex instead of what I wanted to say and with the context of the convo it was apparently really funny!

I had an interview with the pres this week. We asked me how things were going and all. He told me that I am going to be a great leader in this mission and that I can help a lot of people. He said that I just need to do my part and that for now that is to learn Spanish. He told me that if I continue working forward that I will be a great help to the mission. I hope that I can do that. It is what I want to do!

Thanks to the GPS Dad sent, i know that i am exactly 2659 miles from home! Incase anyone was wondering and the trucks that I ride go 50 miles per hour and today there were 20 of us in the back, breaking the old record.

It is the end of the month and we dont have much money so we have been eating a lot of rice with nothing. It is pretty funny to try and survive with nothing. I think I have lots about 10 pounds already this week!

Stories of the week... Bishop Bishop told me I couldnt tell mom if I got robbed or hurt but....since it didnt happen to me I think it is fine. Saturday ngiht after the baptism the people in SY went crazy! We were walking down the street and a husband was sitting on his wife beating her and we didnt realize what was happening until he got up close and Edler E said "lets bounce" his English phrase and we started running and then the guy got off and she started running and he threw a huge rock at her really hard. It really bothered me. There isnt really a police here so he like isnt going to be punished for doing this. Then later that night we barely missed a machete fight between two Haitains and apparently one of them got stabbed pretty bad. Everyone keeps telling us to be careful out in San Fran but I love it out there. Never a dull moment.

Right now the investigators/recent converts are our best tool. They are all sharing the gospel with their friends. We have 7 baptisms planned for this week we will see what happens. Two families. I am soo excited.

Well not much else is new!

-Did you see if the stores have lard instead of shortening. If they do it will make your cooking much easier and a lot more options!
i still havent checked...we are poor right now so were living cheap!

I love you all soooo much! I miss you all so much too! Thanks for your love and support!!!

Elder Wilson

Seth says no mail for several weeks.


P.S. A couple of notes of interest that he sent to us separate from the blog letter. The neighborhood he is working in San Fran is a very poor and somewhat "outcast" neighborhood in Sebana Yegua. Seth said none of the houses have water. They haul all of their water from the canal or anywhere else in the town they can find some. The women carry the water on top of their heads. They also don't have electricity in their home per se, but in Seth's words they "steal" electricity from others to use. Most of the people are uneducated and don't read. The majority of people don't have jobs and the few that do work in the field for less than the equivalent of $10.00/day. He absolutely loves the people and the area.

The other note of interest is that he was sure to point out that 20 people in the truck was NOT from "hitch-hiking"(see last weeks letter)but was rather a "paid"ride. It costs about 50 cents to ride into Azua which is about 30 miles from Sebana Yegua.


Monday, March 22, 2010

Luz on the loose

Wow..... 7 internet cafes no luz (light\electricity) 3 different tries to write this stinking letter so I hope that the luz stays for long enought to finish. Great day hahaha

Well things are going great here. The light and water has been horrible lately. We havent had hardly any. I took quite a few of bucket showers this week but I think I like them better because they arent as cold!

Not too much is new here. Weds we had our normal district meeting and we ate out like always. The restraunt that we ate at was amazin. I asked our Zone Lider if I was going to get sick and he told me that I wouldnt and I said if I do I am going to be mad at him. Well you already know the story. You arent supposed to date on tthe mission but I had a date that night with the bathroom! I had diahrrea 8 times during the night! It was horrible I fellt so skinny afterwards.

The pictures of Mikayla are so stinking cute! It was so nice to see the family! Everyone looks great! Not going to lie Maren, everyone is in love with you! All the missionaries think youre hot stuff! Especially Elder Espinola. He has a picture of you hanging on his desk! The brownies were amazing too! I ate them in 2 days (one and a half) and Elder Espinola liked it a bunch too.

Funny stories of the week. There are always people that are beating their kids. Thats just the culture here but it is especially funny when the old ladies do it to the little kids but this week I saw an ancietly old lady running down the street with a branch in her hand chasing a little toddle. I think you had to be there but it was sooo funny. We were in a lesson when it happened and all of us just started cracking up! She couldnt catch up to him!

Weds night we had a movie night in the chapel with all of our investigators. We watched the Restoration and it went really well! I think that they all thought it was good!

Friday was a weird day from the beggining. Our district leader came out to do a baptismal interview. He begged me to make the fry bread so we did it. Our investigator had to work in Azua that day so couldnt make it to the interview so we had to do an un planned intercambio. I stayed out with him again (Elder Shoenhals he is amazin!!!) and out of no where a bunch of Americans showed up at the basketball court by our house in a bus. We went to talk to them. Turns out that they are here from Oklahoma doing dramas about God. Their drama was really weird and crazy. We talked to them afterwards and they were nice but starting asking us what we were doing and after they found out we were Mormons they started being kinda of jerky and questioning our beliefs. Sure doesn´t make me miss americans! haha Then later in the day, we saw two motorcycles almost crash. That was really funny after the fact. And we were teaching a lesson and during the pray the guy just got up and started walking around. He came back in a couple minutes later with a comb and his shoes and told us to continue. It was a little bit different and then he got up later and walked around agina. He was a little bit different. After that there was a little kid on a runaway motorcycle. He was too small to stop it. Idk how it didnt crash but his dad was chasing after him and it was hilarious! LAter that night, during the interview, the family I told you about last week, the wife, showed up at the chapel and I talked too her for a long while. I asked how we can help her family and she said that her husband still just doesnt feel comfortable in chucçrch with out his clothes. his jeans and his only pair of shoes are covered in paint. I felt like I should give him a pair of my pants so I did and they were very grateful. Sunday came a long and he had to go to work and couldnt go to churhc. That means that if I get transfered out at the next transfer, I wont be able to see him get baptised. That made me really sad. The first time in the mission that I really felt sad for someone who didnt complete with the things they need to do to be read for baptism. Idk.... and while I was talking to her she asked me how much longer I have in SY and I told her its possible that I might leave in a week and a half. She got a little teary eyed and told me that she hoped Id stay because she doesnt want me to leave because she has become acostumed to me. That made me feel really good because I have always thought I had a connection with the family and its good that they feel they have one with me too. I think I will always remember the family Cabral. I really hope that they all get baptized soon. She told me that I have to return and visit their family someday.

WE had a baptism on saturday of a kid named Francisco. He has 18 years and has already comitted to serve a mission. He is going to be a great member. He is awesome. He is in the pictures.

Elder Espinolas brother returned to the mission this week so he is excited about that. I still love him to death and he aare still working amazing together! The scab on my forehead is gone and I didnt get any new ones this week.
I havent heard from Elder Barrett! I am not sure where I will watch conference. The pres here doesnt want us to watch it in Eng so it will be in spanish!
If I am still here in SY we will go with the ward to Azua in the district center and inbetween the sessions or after we will have a massive baptism for all the areas in Azua. That would be exciting to see. I will know next monday what my fate is. Elder Espinola and I both think that I am going to leave and he will stay but I hope I can stay too. I love it here and am just starting to feel like I know enough to kinda get to know the members. Spanish really came along this week! I really felt blessed! All is good here!

Love you all lots! Thanks for everything!


Elder Wilson

Look for fun pics later tonight.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Blood and Barbed Wire!

Hola la familia mia!

How's everything going back home?! Life here is going good. Can not complain. This week was one of those weeks you just had to laugh and smile because everything went wrong! A lot of the members failed us and investigators too. Gas went out, scab on face, diahrrea, ect! But I loved iit.

- So is the Spanish coming along tons faster having a native companion to communicate with?
Having a spanish companion has helped me but I have to try to not get frustrated. I am a slow learner I decided. And some days I know a ton more than others! When I have intercombios I always know a lot more or maybe it is just because I can understand Americans when then talk. I am not sure.
Elder Espinola continues to be very patient with me. Poor kid. I do not know much and he always has to repeat himself. But we try to do our best. We talked about what he is going to do after the mission and he says he really doesnt know and that is scares him because there is not much to do. He hopes he can find work or go to school but says that he will worry about it when the time comes!

We had 3 baptisms sat. Really only 1 because the other ones were family of members that just hadnt been baptized. The one that we taught is Yaylina/Yerlina something liek that. She is Haitain and always happy! She got sick on sunday and was in the hospital so she didnt get confirmed yet!

Yes I have cooked some! I made the bread twice now! I love it! It is sooo good. And I use the packets that you and the websters sent me to make spaghetti. And we had gravy with yuka the other night and that was amazing!

Our baptism for 2 weeks ago, Jose, is soo solid. He has already given us 3 references and walks about in his white shirt and tie and shares the gospel with everyone. He says when his work (he sells stuff in the street) isnt going well he just goes and talks to people about the gospel.

The family that needs to get married is having troubles getting papers together but I still have hope for them! They have changed so much. Every lesson with them they just soak it all up! You can see the change in their countance and I absolutely love it!

Tuesday was horrible! Everything went wrong! I just had to laugh that day. We had three members planned to leave with us and every one of them cancelled on us. About half of our appointments werent there, We walkd from one end of town to the other about 7 times, i cut my forhead, and to make things worse I had horrible diahrrea when I got home! I think I sent pictures of my forehead but doesnt look too bad. It was worse! We were walking out of an appointment in the dark and and i was writing down our return appointment and WHAMMMM there was a gate and on top of the gate was barb wire. I got clothes lined by alambre de puas. It bled for ever!!! I am glad that I got my tetnus shot!

On Wed I had an intercambio with elder shoenhals. He is from michigan. It was so fun and so nice. We talked and talked and talked. I Prob way to much because we stayed up a little late but it was soo nice to just talk with someone. He is an awesome kid and has had a rough life but gets whats going on. He is from michigan. It was so fun and so nice. We talked and talked and talked. I have a new hobby. Hitch hiking! It costs us 80 pesos (2 dollars) to go to azua and back so me and elder espinola have decided to hitch hike. With Shoenhals we had to run after a guy and as he was driving we jumped in the back and had to roll into the bed of the truck! it was sooo funny.

Yesterday in church my first convert that waas a male, papito, he is 18, blessed the Sacrament so that was cool! Fun to see!

After church we went to cook lunch and the gas ran out! So we had to cook in the church. that was kinda fun!

Investigator of the week is Joselito. 18 yrs old and gangster. When we contacted him, he had long hair, ear rings, the whole deal. Last week he stopped wearing earrings and yesterday he told us he wants to cut his hair but wants a picture with it first and one after so that he can show people how much he has changed. Idk it is fun too see him change. I can not really understand him cuz he mumbles sooo much but Elder Espinola always fills me in afterward. He started teaching Joselitos aunt to and she wants to change and we promised her that her change can come through the gospel and she accepted a bapt date with Joselito! that was lots of fun!

The week has been good! I love you all lots. Sorry letters are always soo scattered!
I love you tons!
thanks for your love and support!

Thanks a ton to the Websters for sending me the package! Was way nice and nice to hear from you all! I am going to miss you all tons! Especially Jace!

Tell keato I want an email from him telling me where he is going!

Love you all

Elder Wilson

Saturday, March 13, 2010

The Tender Mercies of the Lord

Seth and his companion, Elder Espinola, are teaching a more poor and humble population than previously. They themselves are trying to be obedient and humble and love God's children in the poorest of circumstances. They are unified and love each other. We have seen this as a "Tender Mercy" from our Heavenly Father. For those who might not be familiar with this term, the video link below will be helpful.
As a grateful son and father,

The Tender Mercies of the Lord

Monday, March 8, 2010

Happy Elder

Hola Family!

Ok so to start Elder Espinola is from San Franscico in the Santiago mission. About his family, his bro and sis are members but his mom is not. His dad was killed when he was three so he doesnt really know muhc about his dad. He has had a tough life and always has had to work to help his family out. Pretty humble kid. He eats chicken raw.

We are having a ton of sucess here. We put down 10 bautismals dates yesterday in sacrament meeting and we have fifteen with a date right now. We are working with one family. We contacted them and the first day the wife wasnt very receptive and all but a week and a half later she was balwing in the Sacrament meeting, after we had to explain to them that it didnt matter what they wore to church because they didnt want to go because they didnt have nice clothes and says she is 100 percent converted because of the book of mormon. She has already read basically through 1 ne and continues every day which is a ton of reading for her because she does not know how to read very well. But she is the first person that I have really seen a complete change of heart in and wow it is totally amazing! I love it. the 19th is their marriage and 20th their baptism and in one yr their sealing! It is soo awesome.

We had 3 baptisms on saturday and have 3 more this sat. Jose and Banesa were baptised on Sat and both of the m are older like 40s and will be very strong members in the church. I am sooo excited for them.

Pictures arent working again today but i have a bunch. Right now we are working in a neighborhood called San Fransciso. It is a VERY poor area. Tin houses with dirty roads and looks like you would imagine when you hear 3rd world country. And it has been raing the last couple days so we have been playing in the mud the last three days. It has been lots of fun and crazy. I was a nice break from the burning hot sun! There hasnt been much electricty this week and even less water/ I think i only showered like 3 times this week.

Our branch presidents wife had surgery in Azua so we visited her while we were there. It is really nice because elder Espinola is way into service. WE are always serving others. We always sit on the ground while we teach so the people we teach can sit in their chairs. I so wish the pictures would wokr. I have some good ones.

During one of our lessons a little boy came out and was eatign toothpaste. Idk but it made me really think about wow all that we take for granted. He was eating toothpaste. The weirdest thing here is that people just breast feed right in front of you. Almost everyday atleast twice in our lessons they are breast feeding!

Since there was no light my laundry sat in the little washing machine for like 3 days.... i went down when we finally had light and WOW it smelt horrid!

The biggest problem that we have now is that a lot of people do not know how to read. It is hard to teach someone about he B of M and other things when theey cant read but at the same time it is a blessing because they have to find someone else to read it for them and who ever reads it for them gets to learn to.

I am out of time and have to jet. So much to say but so little time. Thanks for all your prayers and lvoe I have really felt them this week! Know that I love you and that I am soo grateful for all you do for me. Elder Espinola nad I are working hard and time is flying. There arent enough hrs in the day to get everything done and its a good feeling to hit the pillow and not remember a second later! We are really going at in and loving every minute of it. I could not have aasked for a better companion and better teacher.

I love you all lots!

If i didnt answer a question remind me and I will do it next week!

Love you lots

Elder Wilson

Seth sent shout outs to: Kenny Liscum, Keato, Browns, Jesse, Brindy, Haley, Suzy, Ms Liscum, Ms. Catt, and Websters. He then added "I can't think of others and I'm out of time but tell them 'Hi' too."

Seth added that they are not getting regular mail on a weekly basis but he appreciates the letters!

Elder Keaton Brown... Seth guesses you'll go to Indonesia!

Monday, March 1, 2010

New Companion Elder Espinola

Hola Familia.

Another Crazy week in Sabana Yegua. I had an intercambio on weds with the Zls and that was good. It was with Elder Gardner. I sent a picture of him. He is from Canada and on Thursday the Assistants called us to our house and told us that we were going to have a special transfer. Elder Barrett had to leave and I got a new companion. His name is Elder Espinola. He is a Dominican so it is a little difficult for us to talk. Spanish isnt coming so well. I have to be honest it is frustrating sometimes. Elder Espinola is a really hard worker and were already having a lot of success!

I received a package from home! It totally made my day and made me soo happy. I gave Elder Espinola one of the chapsticks and he did not know what to do with it! He did not know how to use chapstick! I thought that that was pretty funny. He now puts it on and says he is a girl everytime he does it! THe peanut butter will be amazing and all the speghetti packages are amazing because elder espinola only eats top ramon so I am fending for myself. I really like him though. We share everything and there is a ton of unity between us already so that is really nice! He is a really good kid!

I got the websters package! Thanks so much! I loved JAces letter. Soo jace. I am really gunna miss you guys!

I tried pig colon. It was not too bad actually. The members have been cooking a lot more for us and so that is really good.

I did get some new pants and they look pretty good! My other ones I am just really disappointed in!

Elder Allred is the kid that is in my Zone. He is from Lehi Utah. Man that kid just makes my week every week. I look forward to pdays just so I can see him! Again today he was like ya man we need to room together and we both want to be orthodontists too!

Havent gotten to close with any ward members yet because I am still not able to communicate completely!

Most people are catholics the others are evangelicos. The evangelicos dont really like the mormons very much so theyare always fun to talk too.

Right now I do not get many juices. Sabana Yegua doesnt have much but I think other places have more. I do not drink coke much anymore. I got tired of soda pretty quick.

All is going well here. THe Lord is always there for us we just have to be willing to see and accept His help. I have to remind myself of this sometimes. Especially with Spanish haha but I am grateful for all your love and support!

Elder Wilson