Monday, February 27, 2012

February 27, 2012: Week 19 A Happy Birthday to Emily!

So We decided that we aren't ever using that other internet cafe again. Elder Atkinsons computer froze too...but since I missed it last week.
HAPPY 18TH BIRTHDAY EMILY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
There you go and don't worry, I didn't forget, I just couldn't send an email last week. Emily I'm going to write you a letter today so be expecting in within a few weeks. Dad, those doctrinal points helped alot, but she still didn`t accept it and now she hasn't been to church for 2 week in a row since going for 4 in a row. It's sad but we have literally taught her everything from The Restoration to Fasting. We have nothing left to teach her and she isn't changing. We might have to "Drop" her.

That's super sick that Jeremy Evans won! BTW how are the Jazz doing? Are they up in the top of the rankings?
Sounds like the Blue and Gold banquet was fun! Sorry I couldn't get my pictures to you in time. I did send more so be expecting them. Also I still have my 16 GB card that I have all of my pictures on and the ones I Send I just copy them over to the othercard when it comes. So ya send one when you get the one I sent, and I will definitely be expecting a lot of letters soon. Haha the Elders in their "Droughts" are going to be so mad :)! I remember one time a few weeks ago 3 of my packages and like 8 or 9 letters came for me at the same time, and Elder Shepherd, one of our ZL's, said "geez Elder Duke you know some of us don't get letters." I said "I'm sorry I haven't left the Garden of Eden yet" referring to Eagle Mountain of course.  Lol I know I'm super hilarious. ;)

Yes I got all my packages stamps, nutella, garments and all. You can tell by reading my story above.
I already wrote and sent the letters to Lizzy and Katy and I'l be writing one to Emily and Sarah this week. I wrote a family one and one to Kaili last week so be expecting those in the next couple of weeks as well.

With the money thing, and I'm going to bold this because I've tried to explain it before, but I don't think you've noticed. (Yeah, Dad noticed...I just worry! ;) ) I don't run out of money. We just have to take it all out at once. First because nothing in our area accepts cards. Second because using the Cards alot here apparently isn't very safe, so that's why it looks like the money goes by really fast. I hope that cleared up the confusion. I've just been taught that here, it's just safer and better to use cash not cards. But so far I've never run out of money. I usually have extra left over actually.

For food Breakfast is usualy a bowl of cereal. Lunch in our area we get fed every day. Also here they don't eat breakfast, they just drink Mate, which is like some weird herb drink. It sounds and looks super gross, and missionaries can't drink it anyway. Lunch, they eat a huge meal so we get like 2 to 3 plates of food and there is always a desert like Helado (ice cream or sherbet) or Dulce (literally means "sweet" but can be dessert or candy) of some sort.
Dinner here doesn't exist almost ever. They just eat enough food at lunch, to carry them throught to the next day. It's really weird. Usually we literally eat 1 of 3 things rice with sauce, noodles with sauce, or milanesas which are like meat patties dipped in batter and fried. That is literally the extent of the meals here. The word originality for food doesn't exist here. Also the food is very bland. They put next to none when it comes to flavoring and spices. They think Bell Peppers are spicy! It's super funny! Giving them Warheads is probably one of the funneist things ever to see, lol! their faces are priceless!
As for laundry, members of the ward do our laundry here, but in most areas we have to wash our clothes by hand.

Sounds like alot of things are changing since I've been gone. That's so crazy that President Draper is released!! I can't believe it's been that long! Also don't forget to keep me updated with friends and where they're serving. and btw I know every single person that I'm friends with on Facebook, so don't worry about whether or not I know them, cuz I do.

April is home next month!! WOW! Also I'll have a year left when Alex gets home! That's crazy! Time goes by way way way to fast!!
Besides like $20 I'll be fine for this month, and I only need that because our water leaks and we went a little over on that so we got less money this month.

I love you all and miss you, hopefully by Mothers Day I'll know better Spanish ;)

Elder Jordan Duke

Monday, February 13, 2012

February 13, 2012: Week 17 Time goes by way too fast...

I can`t believe that Jack already had his farewell! And since when was Josh going to be Deacons Quorom President?? I had no idea! Congratulations o ¡Felicitaciones! That`s great to hear work is going better. I am a little worried about maybe being in a new ward when I get back, but I can't really do much about it. A zebra dress, that sounds a interesting.... I definitely need to see a picture of that.(Referring to Emily's Sweethearts Dance dress.) I got all the packages by the way. and at the same time. So all the Elders who are in their "drought" weren't too happy that Elder Duke got 4 packages and like 10 letters. It was really funny!!

Our investigadores are good since you want to pray for them I'll go one by one and explain their situation.

Mariana: She loves everything about church she has been 5 weeks in a row all three hours. Only problem is she doesn't want to acept a fecha for baptism because in November she tried to committ suicide. We've tried to explain to her that The only thing she needs to do now is make that step of faith. We know that God has forgiven her and she is ready. She is just scared and still needs to forgive herself. We want to give her the 10th of March as date for baptism. So you can help pray for her for that date.

Veronica: She is 12 and she loves everything she just has a problem with putting church as a priority. So if you could pray for her to have that desire to come to church that will help a ton.

Daniela: She is kind of off and on. One week she comes and the next she doesn't. She reads and prays but just has a problem with getting to church every sunday.

Lilian: She is 40 mas o menos and she has 2 daughters 12 and 18. They don't listen to us but she has been talking to us for about 3 weeks now. She went to church 3 weeks ago. and she now has the thought that church is boring because it was a 5th sunday and everything was rescatate (reactivating) and bring back the menos activos. It was actually hard for us to stay awake... So now we just need help with her getting back to church and also her daughters to listen to us.

Malena: She loves talking to us and all the other stuff and her parents also. Her and her mom had a Fecha for the 25th of this month, but they didn't come to church.... They have a Panadaria (bakery) and they work every day in the morning So it's hard to get them to church. So pray for them to come to church.

Those are all of our investigadores that are really set and we've had at least 2-3 lessons with. They're all great just no one here comes to church.

I love you all and miss you! Thanks for all the prayers!

con amor, Elder Jordan Duke

P.S. I had pictures I was going to send, but we have Zone Conference this week so I can't even send them until thursday and I won't get anything till then either. i'll still send them though.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

February 6, 2012: Week 16

So I'm now on my second week of change 2. It feels weird to have people younger in the mission than me.... I still don't know that much. My spanish is improving a lot. I can relate pretty much whatever story i want. it just takes a while for me to get the words out of my head. I have just about every word I need to use in my head, I just can`t make sentences sometimes. The understanding is pretty good. Some days I can't undrstand anyone at all. While other days I can understand pretty much everything. We still don't have anyone with a fecha bautismal (baptism date) but we are working on getting people to that point. We are going to share Moroni 8: 25-26 with the girl who doesn't think she is worthy for baptism and try to help her understand baptism will help and if she's truly been praying for forgiveness for over a month I'm almost 100% positive God has forgiven her. She just needs to forgive herself and take that step of faith. For the most part we have had at least 2 in church for a month straight now so that's good.

About letters I've gotten some of the letters from everyone like 1 from Lizzy and from the family and the cousins, but I can't resond because I need more stamps. I'm completely out so send some up in one of the next letters please. Thank you. But as soon as I get the stamps I'll start firing off more letters.

Today we went to the Zoo as a District. There were lions, leopards, tigers, monkeys, baboons, water buffalo, llamas, goats, chickens, peacocks and capiburas or however you spell that. Those giant hamster things. It was super fun. We played futbol after and I decided I'm terrible compared to the latinos. We have an Elder from Panama, Elder Fonseca, in our district and he is really good. Our district is: Me and Elder Atkinson (Colorado), Elder Tyree (West Virginia) and Elder Fonseca (Panama) and Hermana Moreno (Argentina) and Hermana Shaw (Utah). It's a great district and everyone is hard workers.

I still can't believe that there are now Elders and Sisters younger  than me in the mission. I was talking to some of the Older "Veterans" with like 6 months left and stuff and they all said they feel like they just got here. Even the ones leaving this next change. We have weird names for stuff in this mission. Like being "Born" is starting your mission. "Dying" is ending you mission. Your "Dad" is you trainer and your "Mom" is the comp of your "Dad" before he trained you (That's a new one for Dad...not sure I would have wanted to be called "mom."). and your trainees are your "Kids" or "Hijos" It's funny especially when a member overhears that an Elder "died" last change and they freak out :)! Lol

I'm going to attempt this last paragraph in spanish so here goes nothing.

Amo recibiendo sus cartas y leyendo ellas. Estoy muy agradecido por esta oportunidad que tengo para compartir el evangelio con las personas aqui en Uruguay. Solo tengo un cambio aqui, pero se que esta realmente es el mejor decisión que los hombres jovenes pueden tomar. Esta obra realmente es la obra del Señor. Puedo sentir del amor que Él tiene para todas las personas en la tierra cuando estoy en una lección y puedo sentir el Espíritu Santo muy fuerte. Se que sin ninguna duda que esta Iglesia es la unica igelsia verdadera en la tierra y si hacemos nuestra parte y obedecemos los madamientos de Dios, podemos tener gozo, paz y consuelo en esta vida y la vida eterna depues de esta vida. Tambien podemos vivir con nuestras familias en El Reino Celestial con Dios y Jesucristo. Se que José Smith vió Dios y Jesucristo en la Arboleda Sagrada y que él fue llamado para ser un profeta en estas últimas dias y por medio del poder del Sacerdocio él tradujó El Libro De Mormón y establició La Iglesia de Jesucristo en la tierra otra vez. Se que tenemos un profeta hoy, Thomas S. Monson y él esta aqui para ayudarnos y guiarnos en esta vida. Se que la expiación de Jesucristo fue por todos de nosotros y no fue solo por nuestros pecados pero fue por nuestros affliciones y dolores tambien. Amo a mi Padre Celestial y estoy muy agradecido por las bendiciones que Él me da. Les amo y escribiré mas cuando yo puedo.

Con Amor, Elder Jordan Duke