All right, first I got all my cards and ID back. The guy only took my wallet and the cash.... They already replaced my money for the mission, but I'm can't pull it out because I'm still waiting for my card. So yes to all 3.
I'm sorry you have kidney stones Mom! That's not fun. I've never had one, but if you say it hurts worse than labor then I don't ever want one! Don't worry either your email made sense. Too bad you guys couldn't go to Alex's (Jordan's cousin who left on his mission 1 year to the day before Jordan.) homecoming. I'm sure he did great. So weird that he's home....
They don't really do anything for halloween here in Uruguay. I heard that the little kids dress up. But no one else cares. We told them how it is in the USA and they said that would be fun, but hard here because there are alot of iffy people here in Uruguay. ;) I actually had forgotten it was even close to Halloween until I read your email. I guess when your in the mission the Holidays are just another day of work.
Great Job Thunder Band! I'm sure you'll make BOA finals for sure. What day do you go down? Also try and film it because I'd love to see their show. What's it even about anyway?
What has Sarah been doing that the trombone is almost broken? Is she sword fighting with it or something? ;)
The people are progressing mas o menos. We had no one in church at all... Which was a little bit of a bummer because we had worked so hard to get them to commit to come, but they didn't. We right now are still in the process of finding good people. We've done good so far and we've found a few good people who have good hopes of progressing. We found a menos activa named Jenifer and her non member husband, Marcelo. He's great and said that whenever she wants to go to church he'll go with her. We going to work hard with them to get them to church this week. Also we found a man named Fabricio. He's the boyfriend of a menos activa. Only probelm with them is that they aren't married and they have 2 kids. Still we're going to work with then and hopefully see some miracles there.
The conference with Elder Oaks was AWESOME!!! He taught us a lot! Also Elder VIñas and Elder Hallstrom from the Seventy were there. Elder Hallstrom talked a lot about how we're not seeking baptisms, we're seeking converts. It was great and it was really needed to be heard, because there is a big problem with a lot of elders just baptizing little kids who have no support and end up going inactive once the elders leave. Elder Viñas talked about mas o menos the same thing about Verdadero Crecimiento (True Growth). After Elder Oaks gave us a inspiring talk on repentance. Not about us repenting but about teaching repentance effectively and right. He explained how repentence is a prerequisite of baptism, not to be done after. He also explained to us about how it's crucial that we teach complete and correct doctrine. We can't expect the people to make a change and repent if we can't even teach them all of the principles. I definitely learned a lot, and realized some areas where I can improve. I really believe that we're going to see miracles here in Uruguay with the council of Elder Oaks and the others.
The big highlight of the week was the conference, but also we had a funny experience going down to Deo (Montevideo). We were in little buses, which were just 12 seater vans. Our van broke down in the middle of no where and we had to wait for an hour to be picked up. A little Toyota Truck came up and hooked up to us with a rope that had to be 4 ft at the most. So we're getting hauled by this truck that's smaller than the van and we're going like 65 mph passing other cars along the way (We were all sure that if the truck had to slam on the brakes we'd be screwed), swerving and drifting in and out of the lane. It was an adventure for sure. There were moments where I thought we'd die! But in the end we made it safely there and had a good time in Deo at the Conference.
Hope you all have a good week and have fun during the Holidays. Make them good because they're the last ones without me! ;) wow, what a thought...
I love you guys!
Elder Jordan Duke
PS I was thinking that ties and candy like Jolly Ranchers and Starbursts are good for christmas. And whatever else you feel like sending me. :)
More "burning tie" pics to celebrate 1 year in the mission: