All is well here in the jungle--it`s rained everyday this week so my rainboots have come in handy. We trek through the mud everyday as our area doesn`t have paved roads. It is one adventure after the next. This week has been busy but good--we are preparing Junior (18) for his baptism this week. Yeah Yeah! He is solid. Came to Conference with us yesterday, has read the 1 & 2 Nephi and Jacob. We are also working with Familia Mozombite as they will be getting married on the 24th the day before their baptism. I`m learning how to marry people out in the jungle! Lots of paperwork and errands, but it is all good.
This week started out a little rough but ended on a strong note. At times my perspective can get cloudy--like when our water stops working and I have to shower with a bucket or when the members that are acompanying us to a lesson come 45 minutes late. The mission is challenging but I loved the message of Elder Godoy in Conference when he said that we should work the the end vision in mind. I have to keep my eyes upward--to focus on the vision of why I am here--because my time is short. This mission isn`t permanent. I was reminded why I was here during our Friday companionship study. We decided to answer the first set of questions in Chapter 1 in PMG--What is my purpose as a missionary. Each of us answered the questions. I felt the spirit as I remembered why I had put my mission papers in in the first place and why I`m here. I want to love these people!! I want to bring them closer to Christ. The talk on missionary work by Elder Bednar was gold as it perfectly describes why we share the gospel. Although I watched most all of the sessions in English with the other North American Missionaries. I was so touched to see all of the members pour out of the chapel on Sunday morning.
The church has only been here for 40 years--it`s new, but we are working to establish Zion. We were reminded of this during a training we had with all the Ward Councils in the 3 stakes here in Iquitos. 2 Area Seventy came to speak. As of right now only 34% of the members that were baptized from the past two years are active. If more were active we would have around 7 or 8 stakes and we would be esencially have a temple. I can`t remember his name but I was touched by the message of the member of the Seventy. We are to establish Zion. We are to seek out Christ`s flock. We are help bring others to Christ, to become faithful members of the church and receive temple recommends. We are to do all we can to prepare for a temple here in the jungle. It was a rad meeting. I came away ready to work. How blessed am I to work in this part of the Lord`s vineyard. To establish Zion and help members become worthy for a temple. There is a lot of work to do!
Two other highlights of my week--
On Sunday we left the house early to pick up a less active man. He is 84 years old and has 2 teeth. Julio--he is the sweetest old man. He walks around and hears fairly well. He opened the door right as we knocked with his turquoise polo on and blue basebell cap along with his little black bag. It was the cutest thing.
On Friday we stopped by Rogner and Victoria`s house as they came back from Requena, a town on the other side of the river (apparently there is a ton of really cool things out there but since it`s across the river I won`t get to see it during my time here. That`s ok, after!) People here in Iquitos show their love by feeding you--oh my goodness we had all kinds of fruit that they brought back. It was delicious--they have these fruit call Caminos ( I call them belly button fruit) so good! It was fun trying different fruit in the jungle. We are working with them to get married--they know the Book of Mormon is true and like going to church. They are the sweetest family.
Well all is well here in Secada. Next week are transfers--I made it through my first one in the field!!! The Lord is so good. I am safe and working hard. Love you all and miss you. You are in my prayers!