Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Week 76

Hi Everyone!
Well sorry for writing a day late! Its Carnival season and this past weekend was a big parade/party for the entire island so Monday was a national holiday for people to sleep/get sober for work, and EVERYTHING was closed. Worst P day ever! But the library was closed so we weren't able to write yesterday.
So yes, this past week I stayed in Aruba the entire week! It was nice, but we still had to go to the airport to drop off Sis. Cuevas who finished her mission! It’s gonna be a lot more boring around here without her haha. But this branch is finally starting to get its fire back! It’s incredible how much missionaries affect the church out here because it is so small, and this poor branch has had a really rough few string of missionaries, but we have been working really hard with the branch and are finally starting to see the fruits of it!
 We watched the broadcast(the world-wide missionary training meeting) and it was really good! It had a lot of really good suggestions that we are going to implement into our zone including working more with less-actives. It was a good broadcast.
This past Sunday was absolutely crazy. Everybody wanted to feed us or for us to come over for family night or they had a reference for us or wanted a Book of Mormon to give away and 3 people brought friends to church! It was the most stressful three hours of the week! After church we went to get our bikes and had to sit there for a minute to take in what had just happened. Needless to say we are going to be ridiculously busy this week!
Also we had an incredible lesson with the Chacon Family. We talked about our purpose on earth and faith repentance and baptism and they agreed to be baptized on the 20th of February! I am so excited for them! Also it was transfers but Aruba stayed the same so we didn't have any problems there! See you guys next week!

Elder Harsh

Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 75

Hi Everyone
Well this week flew by! We had trouble having lessons this week so basically all we did was go contacting and we had so many funny things happen! Some of the highlights were finding a lady that was 104 years old, finding a crazy guy who loved to smile but had no teeth, and finding a super old guy who fell asleep mid-conversation while standing up!! I was impressed.
Anyways I thought I was finally going to have a full week to work in my area but E. Nance had to leave for immigration so we still haven't had a full we in my area yet! So much traveling! Also bad news, we have Elder Rasband coming to visit our mission but we are going to miss it... So that’s a bummer.
 Also Lina (the mom of the Chacon family) hurt her back and so she was down for the count this week and was unable to meet with us or come to church, but on Wednesday we are going to try and set a baptism date. 
On the bright side, we finally got a guy named Hector to come to church. Hector has a cool story he is Arubian and we had two lessons with him then he told us that he wasn't interested in having us come over anymore. He told us to come over and pick of the Book of Mormon we gave him but we told him to keep it. Then about a week ago, we were in the area, so we stopped by to see how he was doing and he told us he was reading a little from the book and he wants us to start coming again! Then he came to church! It was great so see the spirit take hold of him.
 Welp, that’s about all I can think of right now but I'm still loving it here! Aruba'riba!

Elder Harsh
This was sent to me from this couple from Boston- They were on vacation there.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Week 74

Hi Everyone!
Well I'm back in good ol Aruba and hopefully I am going to stay put for a while! It’s been awesome flying around to everywhere but I have really been wanting to get back to work in my area!
Trinidad was so much fun! It was kinda like the DR but not as cool. I flew out with sister Cuevas and so for Thursday and Saturday I had a girl companion!!! :) It was tight.
Also we had a really good conference at the mission home. It was cool being there because I had only seen it over Skype but it was weird because I didn't know anybody there! Everybody was from the other mission and so nobody knew who I was and I didn't know anyone! But it wasn't so bad and Sis. Egbert cooked good food.
We talked a lot about leadership and how to be Christ-like leaders and also we focused a lot on the Book of Mormon and how we can use that to help our investigators. Then Pres. Cornish of the Seventy talked to us about the Character of Christ and the Atonement and it blew everybody's mind. It was an incredible conference! Then on the way home we bumped into Pres. Cornish in the Airport and got to talk to him more! All in all it was a great time and we even got to go out and work in Trinidad! I got to go out with E. Carrillo and it was good to see him again.
Also we bumped into a Dominican member that lives in Bonaire and all she could do was show us pictures of her grandson and tell us how ugly he was! It was sooo funny. Dominicans are awesome.
Today we went with our Branch President to explore caves and it was way fun. We went with the sisters and that's always a good time. Our branch president is a super uptight intimidating guy in meetings and at church and stuff but when he gets with us on P-day he opens up and is hilarious and way fun to be around!
So I think I am going to stay put in Aruba for the next little while but who knows! haha Hope you all have a good week!

Elder Harsh

Monday, January 4, 2016

Week 73

Hi Everyone!
Yeah I got my Christmas!! It cost an arm and a leg to get out of customs but it was worth it for the Smarties, Seeds, and Chulula!!!! In two days worth of personal study I mowed through the 1 pound bag of sunflower seeds and loved every second of it!! But the New year in Curasao was great! Here in the islands its custom for everybody and their dog to shoot off tons of fireworks for the New year. We live up on a big hill there (the biggest on the island) and so we could see the ENTIRE island. It was the coolest thing ever!! Fireworks everywhere!! Also we saw like 3 fields on fire because these islands are really dry so that was funny. There is an Elder In Curasao from a rough city in Mexico and every time somebody shot off a firework from behind us he would cover his head and duck down and he finally couldn't take it anymore and had to go inside. It honestly seemed like he had PTSD and it was so sad. Something I have really learned on my mission is just how incredible it is to live in Utah.  Also  this week we had something freaky happen. I was in Curacao with two other elders and we were walking down the street and this guy pulls up in a truck and starts talking Papiamento to us. The other two elders were really new and didn't speak Papiamento but I was talking to him and in Papiamento the word for "bad" and "sick" is the same. So he told us his daughter was "malu" and I assumed that meant sick and he wanted to know if we could give her a blessing. We said of course but we get there and she was sprawled out on the floor. So we put her in the chair and everything started to go downhill.... she was possessed by 3 spirits and trying to deal with that was terrifying! It honestly scared the crap out of me but very long story short after a while we blessed her and commanded them to leave in the name of Jesus Christ and it all ended all right, but it really shook us all up, especially the two newbies that were with me. It really helped us learn that there really is an adversary against us and that we need to do everything we can to protect ourselves from that. I had kinda thought that that kind of stuff didn't really exist and maybe that’s why it freaked me out so much, but it all ended well.
Then we came back to Aruba and had a pretty successful week considering we only got to work 2 and a half days in Ostad. But this week Pres. Cornish of the 70 is coming to talk to all the Zone Leaders in Trinidad so yep you guessed it! I'm flying again and this time to Trinidad! Sometimes I feel like I fly more than I teach....But the airplane is a great place to contact!! On the way back here I met this really nice Venezuelan who is dating a U.S. Marine who has family that is Mormon. It was great to talk to her about it and I gave her a book of Mormon I just happened to have in my bag :)
Today we went with a member and played Beach tennis! It’s like Volleyball and tennis mixed and was tons of fun! We also had pizza and it was delicious. All in all, it was a pretty good week. Me and E. Walker had a war council while I was with him to set goals for our zone to try and get these Islands blooming!! Well that’s about it but I'm pumped to go to Trinidad to see what that is like!!

Elder Harsh