Monday, August 2, 2010

Austin - Wisconsin - July 19, 2010

¡Hola a todo!
Second week was fantastic with the car! We got a lot done, had a lot of teaching appointments and picked up three new investigators this week. But it seems our baptismal dates are kind of wavering. Two of them are definitely excited and we have started the process of planning the actually baptism but the other three aren't doing as hot. Two of them need to get married and just seem to have no motivation to get married and so during our last companionship study we had construction paper and we made DARLING Calendarios del Matrimonio (Marriage Calenders haha). They're all colorful and we have the date with the marriage on it with a big cake drawn in the box and pictures of the temple, hearts and stuff, it's quite cute. And our last baptismal date is having a really hard time, her son has gotten in to drugs and lives on the street and with bad friends.

We met this 19 year old kid that was driving a Cadillac and he pulled up into a driveway while we were walking, we started talking to him and he was so cool. He's so mature for a 19 year old. He's been through a lot. His dad drank and kicked him out of the house when he was 16 and he has a girlfriend and a child and he has a job at a door making factory and has recently got promoted to the managerial position. And he was just so willing to talk to us, he had so many good questions like Who created the earth (he was kind of confused because Catholics believe God and Jesus are one and so he didn't understand how Jesus could have made the earth if he wasn't born yet.) And what is God's plan for families and he was just curious how he could thank God for all that he had. He was really interested about creation, like creation of the world, babies, mountains, flowers...everything. It just thought it was incredible how God made everything, he knew it wasn't from man because man can only create "robot-like stuff"as he put it. And obviously interested about the creation of babies because he just recently had one. He thought it was cool that God allows people to create other people. Anyways, he was quite a bright young man.
Let's see, Elder Kelly and I also had a really bad day on Thursday, a lot of our appointments fell through, it seemed like no one answered the doors or wanted to talk to us and to top it off I got a headache and was feeling nauseous. So we went back to the apartment and I took a small nap and then we went to Dairy Queen and got a blizzard and recommitted to speak Spanish more, work harder and do better and trust in God always! It was fantastic! We're gonna get some work done, fuurr shuure. In fact, I make 20 notecards every morning now and together we are learning 20 new words a day, it's actually really useful. We try to find different reasons to use words like bleach, squirrel, hierarchy, ditch, birdcage and other stuff in contacts and lessons. I'm learning fast.
Okay, so the day where I was all alone with an English speaking companion -- AMAZING. Holy cow, I didn't even know God knew Spanish but he obvious does because I know it wasn't me that was speaking or understand what anyone was saying. The Zone Leader was quite impressed. We went tocaring (knocking on doors and contacting) for like 2 and a half hours and I managed to hold a conversation with every we met and extend a commitment and even get return appointments with several people. I also taught two lessons all by myself. To Paulo, a knew investigator we have that we found while tocaring, I taught the whole first lesson, it was awesome. He had lots of questions too that I was able to answer and he's excited to meet again, he also asked me about what the bible said about abortion, I didn't really have an answer so I told him I'd search for an answer and have something for him when we returned (I could use help with this too, I still have no idea what scripture I'm going to show him besides the normal don't murder scriptures.) And I taught an impromptu lesson to the investigator with a baptismal date with her son living on the streets (it was the first time I had seen or talked to her). I asked her about how she felt about baptism and she told me she wish she knew more about the Book of Mormon so we sat down and had a little lesson on the Book of Mormon and it was incredible. The spirit was so strong. And I found out later it was honestly a miracle because Elder Kelly tells me that for some reason she has a reeeallly hard time understanding Elders but she never once asked me to repreat myself and she would respond to me very appropriately. But really, they've tried bringing in several Spanish speaking Elders from other areas to try to speak to her and not even the best speakers could communicate really well with her haha. When I told my companion that I taught her a lesson he just got really wide eyed and was just like, "What? Did she understand you at all?" And I said, "Oh come on, I'm not that bad."And he said, "No, she always has a hard time understanding Elders." He was pretty surprised, he expected me to just make a return appointment with her not teach a lesson. How cool is that?
It's hot as a biscuit in our apartment, I don't sleep with anything over me and if we have both fans going and the AC blasting then it's actually a pretty good sleep but it's funny that it's just way to hot even with even one blanket so I just sleep on top of my sheets and blankets. And last week I washed my garments but didn't want to spend $1.25 on drying so I just aired dried them and I guess I didn't dry them enough because I put them in my draw and then throughout the week we noticed a sour smell coming from my body and I honestly thought I had developed body odor but it took a couple days for me to pinpoint that it was my underwear and that it was from when I had put them away still a little wet. It was terrible and my companion has still never let me forget it, he sometimes say as we are getting in the car, "Uugh, smells like a dirty garment bottom in here." haha
Much Love,
Elder Papritz
p.s.
to Tom Westover, thanks for the letter, it was the first letter I got out in the field. They had it waiting for me in the sleeve of the binder they gave each of us at an orientation meeting. I'll write you later but I just wanted you to know that I had just gotten the letter, and from what you were saying I think you assumed I was only in the MTC for 6 weeks. One more month until marriage, right? Sick. haha

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