Monday, October 31, 2011

October 31, 2011: Happy Halloween

Wow I am now onto my first last holiday in the mission. Me and my comp have been joking around that we are going to dress up today like business men with name plaques and all and knocking on the doors here.... Oh wait... We do that everyday haha. It sounds like your party went super well for Halloween. I always love the Halloween party. You all should send some pictures. I still carry around a picture of basil as a pumpkin from last year. i love that picture.

This week was super crazy. Probably one of the hardest physically and mentally of my mission. I am now with Elder Hobbs and he is a great missionary, but he doesn't have a ton of time in the mission and so he doesn't really know how to run a zone. I have been having to do everything. All the complaining and problems by myself when I really don't know what I am doing at all either. But it is all alright. I am happy cause I feel that I  am doing as good as I can. I have gotten better already at doing a lot of things.

This week I went to 3 different areas to do splits. It was crazy. I went to a whole bunch of different places and got to meet a whole bunch of new people and work with new missionaries. It was a lot of fun actually, but super tiring. In one of the houses we were woken up by all these birds chirping. It was terrible. They were so loud. So when we went to leave and we were waiting for the bus stop I was looking at the tree and decided to throw a rock at the tree to try and quiet the birds (bad idea). I chucked the rock and it was way early in the morning and it went way lower than I had wanted and went inside a house. I looked over and saw that there was a person inside that house. I ran over and this old lady just stared at me holding her right shoulder. I asked what happened and she just whispered while turning around entering into her house and with a small voice said, "you hit me". I felt so bad, but my comp couldn't help but laugh.

That was just one of the many things that happened. I really had a great time, but I hope I can stay in my area a bit more this next week.

This week though was the baptism of this kid named Ricardo. He is 20 and is such an awesome kid. He went to church as a little kid but never got baptized. His whole family are members, but him. We had put the baptism for 12, but it got moved to 2 cause of a meeting we had at 11 with all of the bishops and stake presidency. Then we had to move it again that day to 5 because water wasn't falling. It was so hard, but he just wanted to get baptized and brought a whole bunch of his friends. It was such an awesome baptism and he is so powerful. He bore his testimony after and it was amazing.

 Then this morning me and my comp went to get pupusas for breakfast and we started talking to this family that owns the pupuseria. Then this lady ran how and she ran to me and hugged me. I saw who it was and it was a lady that I had taught in Independencia. She told me she had gotten baptized like a month after I had left, and that she had asked for my to come to the baptism, but I was in ahuchapan. It was so awesome to see her and how good she is doing.

It was a good month and I am excited for November. Crazy I will be completing one year of being here. Well I love you all and I am sorry, but President Cordon cut on our time to write so we have a lot less time. But I love you all and hope this next week is great. And don't worry mom I got your e-mail this time haha.

 Elder Gillette

Monday, October 17, 2011

October 17, 2011: The Hurricane


I am going to start out by saying the computer that I am on doesn't really work. The part of the keyboard where the numbers are and most of the punctuations are don't work. So if I put one of these ] today that means it is a question mark and if I put one of these * it is an exclamation. Cool] It may be hard at first, but you'll get the just of our new code thing cause this week will involve a lot of them.

WWWWWWWWWWWWW***************************************************** This has been a crazy week. Craziest of my whole mission. Let's start from the beginning.
Monday- I was doing super good. I was pretty excited about the six more week in my area and about the three baptisms we had for this past weekend. Everything was going pretty good. We got out to work and it was a normal day.
Tuesday- I don't know why Tuesday, but I woke up a little bit bummed that I was going to be in my area again. Such a long time and it has been fun, but I was getting a little bored or something. So we went out and it was going good. We visited this family that is super awesome. I baptized one of the kids , Diego, about five months ago and he is an awesome kid and we are teaching his dad. We had an awesome lesson with the dad. The grandma has just barely gone to the temple and she is awesome. We invited him to be baptized and he accepted and it was such a spiritual moment. The grandma then looked at me with tears in her eyes and told me that the very first time I came to help Diego get baptized that she could see the authority that I held and knew I was suppose to help the dad, David, get baptized too. It was inspiring. I then realized why I was suppose to be in my area for more time. 
The whole rest of the day went well after that. We ended up buying pupusas and going to the house super happy with all that had happened and with the dates that we had. We entered in the house and the phone rang. I went and picked it up and it was my Zone Leader. He then told me that President had just called. I was super confused and asked why. He then told me that we were going to have Emergency Changes. I was like WHHHHHAATTTTT]]]]]]*****. He then told me that I would be leaving my area the next day. I asked where and he told me to a place called Molino. It is in Santa Ana north. I was so confused. I didn't know what to think, than he told me that I was going to be a Zone Leader. I thought he was joking. Sounds like a joke, but it wasn't.
I hung up the phone and started calling everyone. All my recent converts, the members, my bishop. It was so sad. I wasn't going to have any time to say goodbye to anyone cause the next day I was to leave at eight in the morning. I got all packed up too. That was super difficult. I finally got to bed at one thirty.
Wednesday- We got up at five so that I could go and say bye to some recent converts. I knocked on the door of Mama Iris and she was confused why were there so early. I told her I was leaving and she started to ball. It was so difficult. 
I finally got on the bus though at eight and got to my area. My new comps name is Elder Palma. He is from here in Apopa, El Salvador. He is a super great missionary and knows a lot. We went around my area. It looks like a super sweet area. The ward usually has an attendence of one hundred and forty, which is amazing, and the best part is is that the members have a schedule of when they feed the missionaries. Every night we get fed dinner. I was super excited about that. 
The rest of the week has been just like the other days. Being a zone leader is a lot different than I thought. Everyone is always calling and needing something. ON Friday I went on interchanges to this one area named Rio Zarco. I did my first bapismal interview. It was a crazy experience. I had a lot of fun though. I am not gonna lie though it has been a lot of fun getting to know my zone.
Here in El Salvador it has been crazy though. All of this week it has been raining like crazy. When I was in Ahuachapan it was flooding like crazy and got up to like my knees. Here it hasn't been flooding, but it hasn't stopped raining since I got here. A lot of people have suffered a lot of damages. It has been crazy. They say it from a hurricane and that it will keep going til like Wednesday.  We went on Saturday and did service for a family that two of the walls in the house crashed in from the flooding. We got the whole zone together to do it. I can tell it will be a lot of fun, but super hard, to learn how to work well with other missionaries and how to lead. I have been reading in Doctrine and Covenants section one hundred and twenty one a lot this week. I really hope I can be a good leader.
I am not gonna lie though..... I am super tired though. it has been such a crazy week. This next week should be more chill... I hope haha.
Sounds like all is well at home. Wow the World Series is already here again. This is already my second world series. Time flies by. Also I can't believe you asked dad about Christmas. IT is already only two months away. That is crazy. I will think about what I will need for Christmas.
I love you all and hope everything goes well for you all this week. I am always praying for you. I am going to go home and take a nap now I believe :]
Love you and talk to you all next week,

Elder Gillette

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

October 10, 2011: Transfers!!!

Hola Familia!

  Well this past week was a little bit longer. I am not gonna lie it was probably one of the longest and I have no clue why. I blame it on the fact that we were going to find out about transfers and after so much time I was pretty much secure that I was going to be leaving this area and so I was just waiting to see where I would be going. It was a depressing thought thinking that I might be leaving. I really really like this area and I have a lot of fun with my comp and I get along super super well with all the members. We are having a lot of success too.

  On Thursday of last week we went and had interviews with president. He said he was really impressed with how I trained and that Elder Trump recommended me to train again. I would love to train again. I thought it was a blast!

   Last night though I was laying in my hammock and I fell asleep (which that happens every night. My comp always makes fun of me that I always write in my journal and then pass out in my hammock from being so tired and at about 11 I will wonder my way onto my bed. Melt down has come back.) and at 11 I got a call. I picked it up and it was my district leader. He told me that he had the changes. I was super out of it at the time and he then told me that we would both be staying in the area for another 6 weeks. I was like so confused, but it turns out I will be here in el arco for another month and a half. I will have been here for over 7 months at the end of this next change.

   I am super excited cause we have had a ton of blessings in this week. There is this inactive guy we have been working with named Manuel and he really has a super strong testimony, but drives buses so he can't go to church. We visited him this week and it came about that he got a new job where he won't be working Sundays so he told us he can help us Sundays in the morning to bring people to church in the back of his pickup. Here it is totally legal to ride in the back of pickups. So everyone just piles in to the back and go around. I always am walking and see this pickups just filled with people. They have bars around so everyone is standing, but it is crazy. I have to ride them to get to Los horcones and back every week. So this Sunday we went around with him just piling people in the back of his truck. IT was awesome. We felt like we should have been playing music and stuff cause it looked like a party just passing by and picking up people. Some random guy almost hopped in and just went to church with us. It was fun and we are going to start doing that every Sunday.

   Me and my comp this week were asked by the stake president to give 20 minute talks each in our sacrament meeting. I had never given a sacrament talk so long. I felt like we were going to give sermons. I studied and got it all ready and thought it was an excellent talk. I started out telling the story about when mom came into my room and gave me the envelope full of money and told me it was because "I had been such a good kid", but how after she took it away. Everyone loved it and thought it was such a funny story (cause it really is) and I compared that joy I had when I had that money in my hand with the salvation we could one day have. I really really like the quote from President Uchtdorf from conference that he said.
  "You could pile up all the money in the world and you could still not buy a loaf of bread in the economy of God". Everything was going good in the talk until I looked down to my notes and realized that I had left them in my back pack. At least I had looked over my talk a couple times and I know the scriptures really well by now so it all went really well.

   Other than all that I am super excited to be here longer. I love my bishop here so much. He is such a great guy and he made me call him last night after we found out about changes cause he wanted to know if one of us was going to leave. He is a good guy and his family is awesome. All of the members are great. I was telling my comp that I am super glad I will at least be in an area this long that I really like.

     It sounds like it is starting to get cold there again. It is opposite here. It is definitely getting hotter it feels. I am not excited for the rain to stop. I actually really like it.

      Well I think that is everything. I hope you all have a great week! Love you all and dad say hi to Grandma and Grandpa. I am glad to hear that they are doing better.

  Elder Gillette

Monday, October 3, 2011

October 3, 2011: General Conference 3

Hola Familia!
  Wow, what a great weekend. It was great, but also sort of weird. Just because whenever now that I have a constant schedule, but the schedule gets changed for like a day or two, I feel super weird. This week was super good mainly because of General Conference, but I will touch on that later.
  This week we were off and running trying to get everything ready for our recents converts Mama Iris and Little Iris to go to the temple. My ward went this past week for the first time to the temple and we had been hoping we could get our converts to go with them. The ward was going to go on Thursday and so we decided we would get everything ready on Wednesday. Tuesday in the night though we recieved a call saying we were going to go to Santa Ana the next morning til like 6. So we left super early and didn't get back til about 6 and then we ran the whole day to try and get everything ready. I really am super blessed to have such a great bishop (Obispo Zambrano) and get along so well with him. I went to his house and told him about Iris and he said it was almost all ready. That he had done most of the stuff. I felt so relieved. It is so much easier when you have the help of the leaders. 
   We went and saw Iris and her husband was there. They were in a bit of a shock. What happened was that they went to San Salvador on Wednesday and there bus crashed and like 3 people in the front of the bus died. Luckily she said she had felt inspired to sit in the back with her 1 year old kid. She said nothing happened to them. I then asked why they had gone to San Salvador and she said that on Tuesday she had won a brand new phone. I was so surprised. Her husband then told us that he believes it is for the path that she is taking right now. That she had gotten baptized. He isn't even a member and hearing that from him was amazing. I could see in her the gratitude she had in that moment for the Gospel.
   The next night we passed by. I entered in the house of theirs and felt super good. I then asked her what they did that was so different in the house. She told me nothing. We sat down and starting talking. She then told us about how her day was great and then it occured to me that they had gone to the temple. They had done baptisms for the dead and they had loved it! I was so excited. They said the feeling that they got was amazing and the best part was the members were so good to them. They all had bought hymn books and triples. I am so excited for them. The dad wants to get baptized, but just has to find a new job.
   We have been working like crazy and we have seen some great results from our work and much better lessons. I have been able to understand a lot better and just ask better questions. I can tell we are working a lot harder, because we have been starting to do weird things in the night. I, almost every night, fall asleep in my hammock and then at one o'clock in the morning wake up and go to bed. I got up at 1 thirty one night in my hammock and got up and right as I got up Elder Trump yelled at me in an english spanish jibberish and it super scared me. I was scared to look at him cause I was half asleep and I was scared he would be there waiting to like kill me, but when I looked he was out on his bed. I got him back a couple days later cause He told me he woke up to me speaking in the middle of the night  saying, "¿Que dice la hermana de ir a la iglesia? ¡SÍ! " Which means "What says the sister about going to church? YES!" I was cracking up when he told me. I have been working so hard that I am trying to help people in my sleep go to church also. haha
    The multizone that we had on Wednesday was super good. It is fun to go back to old areas in Santa Ana and pass the places I have been to. I like actually being able to know most of the people here. I saw two of my old comps (Elder Romero and Elder Bonilla). I don't talk too much to elder Bonilla (my trainer), but Elder Romero is like one of my best friends now. 
    This weekend was just amazing though. I think its funny how I never watched conference before at all, but now I die to see it. All 5 sessions just fly by so fast. I love what they all talk about and see how usually there is like a topic a lot touch. I decided before that I would write down 5 questions. The conference started and my first 2 questions got answered in the first 2 talks it was amazing. I had other questions that I had not even written down answered too. 
   I especially love the Priesthood Session. I still always miss training table before, but I decided after to get the Training Table of El Salvador... Pupusas haha. Really the stuff they talked about in Preisthood was amazing. I wish I would have heard the talk of Elder Holland before my mission. I believe that every 14- 19 year old kid should hear it. I also loved President Packer. Not gonna lie I feel like he knows he is going to pass away soon, but before he does he is going to tell everything the way it should be. 
   I thought that Neil L. Andersons talk was interesting about why we shouldn't wait to have kids. 
   I really love, like always, the talks of the prophet Thomas S. Monson. The talk from Priesthood was awesome and I invite all of you to read it rather on the internet or when the Ensign comes out. It really helped me. 
   I liked that most of the talks were based on service it seems like. Service rather it be missionary work or service we can do for our neighbor. One of the General Authorities opened saying the 2 Great commandments are Love God and Love your neighbor and that everything else is a break off of that. I heard a lot of wise words today and I hope I can apply them. Thats one thing I have become a lot better at in the mission. That we can read or hear something, but if we don't put it into practice we will never really learn it. 
   I am excited, like always for this next week. It is good to hear that Sweet Tooth Fairy is doing good and opened a new store. I know that they couldn't do it without Hilary. I am sorry about what happened with the house. I was like cringing the whole time that I was reading the message from mom. Jeez mom! When I read about how you slipped I almost died. Be careful, but it will be a hilarious story after this is all over haha. I do hope you all keep enjoying the wheather for me also, because the weather here is just getting hotter and hotter. We will start the dry season at the end of this month. 
   Can't believe I only have one more General Conference in the mission. That is crazy.
   Well I love you all a lot and I hope you have a great day and week.
Elder Gillette