Friday, August 28, 2015

Week Ninety-Nine: Last Forever

Wow! If every week of my mission was a bottle of root beer on the wall, we would have drinken them all by now!

This week was a roller coaster to say the least. Elder Thorpe and I have been working REALLY hard to pull off a group wedding and a big ole baptism. Those efforts have included a lot of lessons, a lot of phone calls, and a lot of problems and miracles. Just to give you an idea, we had to send missionaries to Aija, Ancash and Namora, Cajamarca to get birth certificates out of a small Catholic church (feel free to Google maps those places). It looks like we are going to do it though.

It is weird to be doing the "lasts." They have been a quick two years. They have been amazing, and life changing, and indescribable. It's strange to be ending my service here but I have a lot of stuff to do at home as well. I can't imagine what not serving a mission would have been like. I am so glad for these experiences that I have had. I know that this is the Lord's work and His Church and it has been amazing to be a part of it.

My family will be here Friday. We are going to be here in Moche through Sunday. Monday, we are going to Cartavio. Tuesday, we are going to eat lunch with the Marlers and going to the temple. Wednesday we are going to Chimbote and Thursday, we are going to Chao and then headed home by 10:30pm

Once again, you are all more than invited to my homecoming talk on Sunday Aug 30th at 1pm and to my house afterward. I can't wait to see you all soon!!!!!

Elder González

Ninety-Eight: Buster's Back

Well, after this one there are only two more of these. Weird right?

This week was a great one. Elder Thorpe and I gave my last zone training which was bitter sweet because that is one of my favorite responsibilities. We talked about how to better invite the Spirit to our lessons and how to really "teach" instead of just "informing." To help that point hit home, Elder Thorpe and I did an example where we contrasted reading Where the Wild Things are out loud to someone and really painting the picture and relating it to someones life. We want them to always remember that the missionary lessons are not informative seminars, but rather spiritual discussions to foster real growth.

Also, can I just say that I love having Elder Meaker as the assistant to President? He called us up on Friday night and said, "What are you doing tomorrow?" "Teaching people like normal," we told him. Then he asked us "Do you want to go to Chao for Herminias baptism?" Of course the answer was yes. We went down to see the baptism of the landlady/food lady that Elder Thorpe and Elder Meaker had when they were in Chao and we got to swing through the place where we ate everyday and visit the Salinas Durán family. It was super neat.



As I was thinking and reflecting about what it will be like to go home in a couple of weeks, I thought about the first episode of the third season of the PBS cartoon, Arthur. It is titled, "Buster's Back." If you can find it on Netflix, I would invite you to watch it and to know that I won't even mind if you all like Kresplain or something else crazy when I get back.



Love you all and hope to see you soon,
Elder González

Saturday, August 8, 2015

Week Ninety-Seven: Preparing to Come Home!

Hey there everyone. It's weird to write you on a Tuesday evening instead of a Monday morning. Are you all still there?

We had a great week full of lots o lots o lots o chores and things to do. Elder Thorpe and I have been as busy as bees with training and baptisms and other tasks. We are working on organizing a mass wedding, planning a big baptismal service, and in a very delicate relationship with our landlady about the fact that our power went out a week ago and nothing has been done.

We had a baptism on Saturday of a really cool lady. Her name is Marta and she was the only person who wasn't a member in her whole family. Her son got back from a mission a few months ago. She has been hearing the missionaries for 4 years. She loves listening to the Elders but since she has a hotel and usually takes the night shift she is always tired and has trouble focusing sometimes. Elder Thorpe and I realized, however, that if we really keep things interesting and ask her questions, she not only understands but actually gets excited. Turns out the secret was just her being awake, haha. It was a neat baptism. Even Elder Meaker came down for it.


ANNOUNCEMENT: I realize that I haven't fully disclosed a lot of information about me coming home. So here is the run down. My family will be here on the 21st of this month. We will go around to all of my old areas and visit a lot of the people that I have come to love here. We will be in the Trujillo airport by 10:30pm on the 27th, the Lima airport by 1:10am on the 28th, and the Seattle airport by 1:30pm on the 28th.

When I step off of the plane I will still be a missionary and living mission rules (which includes not hugging females). Due to that potential awkwardness and the many things that I will have to do that day, I am asking for there to not be a big group at the airport. (Sorry, I know that that is a very idyllic scene).

I have about a million and a half things to do that day and the next like renewing things, fixing things, and buying normal people clothes. So the first opportunity that most people will have to see me will be Sunday, August 30th.

At 1pm on the 30th, I will be giving a talk relating stories and learned lessons in my church. I would love for you to all be there to hear some of the things that I have prepared for that day. At two, when the meeting ends, we can all go back to my house and catch up for a minute. We can all talk and gibber and gabber to our hearts contents. It'll be kind of a party/reunion/gathering.

So now you are all caught up on my return, haha. Like I said, it's weird and it brings a lot of mixed emotions and although there are about a million things that I will miss to death about Perú and about being a missionary, I'm pretty excited to see you all as well.

Well, see you later.
Elder González

Week Ninety-Six: Independence Day

Before I forget: next week we are going to the temple to do an endowment session for Pday but since the temple isn't open on Monday, we will have pday on Tuesday. So I will be writing Tuesday the 4th instead of Monday the 3rd.


So last week, I said that I was going to get a tour of the inside of the lighthouse. Not quite. The guy didn't have time to walk all the way up there with us so instead, he gave us a tour of the port. He showed us all of the ships and machinery. Apparently, like thousands of tons of sugar are exported from that port every year. It was pretty neat. It made me kind of want to get a job down at the docks in Seattle. Not one of those jobs where you have to be really strong and lift cargo. Maybe one of those jobs where you just clean the poopdeck or something.


Tomorrow is Peruvian independence day. What does that entail you may ask? Fireworks, alcohol, and a lot of marching bands. It'll be interesting. Elder Thorpe and I celebrated last night by flying our Peruvian flag, eating a Peruvian cake that we bought a couple of days before, and cooking the only thing that makes us think of independence: hot dogs.


We have a baptism this week! Her name is Marta. I'll tell more about her next week when I send the pictures and stuff but she is really neat.

Well, I love you all a bunch. Have a great fiestas patrias!
Elder González