So this week has been great for all of Bella Union. We had 10 people in church. Investigators that is. It was really great! We have a baptism of 4 people coming up this Saturday the 22nd. Our baptism is Karen and the other three are from the other elders so I can't remember their names..
The package that you sent me had the animal cracker cookies and other candy like warheads and stuff. To answer all you questions. All four of us are in the same ward in Bella Union. It's a ward of about 60 active members. It's just us four in the district and we're in the zone of Salto. The ZL's are in Salto and it's about 2 hours away from us in Bella Union. The other elders in our district are Elder Rodriguez from Bolivia and Elder Mendoza from Colombia. ZL's are Elder Laycock from Utah and Elder Hewlett from I think Utah also.
The first district meeting was great! I was fine and not nervous at all. I think that fact that I have a lot of experience and knowing that I had more than a year more in the mission then the next oldest missionary in the district it gave me a little bit of confidence that I knew what I was doing and that with the Spirit all would be fine. I talked about chapter 1 in Preach my Gospel and what we can do to better ourselves as missionaries and focus ourselves on our goals and objective.
We will see Pte. Heaton for the last time on Wednesday. They are coming this week to all the zones for a goodbye conference. It's going to be so weird with them gone, but adjusting won't be too hard either. The new president seems like a great man and I'm sure the work will continue without problems.
So about the other investigators, We have Soledad and Gabriela and Agustin who are brothers and sisters. Soledad came to church but Agustin couldn't because he had a game on sunday and didn't go and Gabriela didn't want to go. I'm positive that they all will go this next week though because Soledad loved church and she wants her siblings to come with her.
Also we had Ramona, who is a great lady and the mother of a recent convert. Her only problems are that she has to quit smoking and get married. She is down to 1 cigarrette a day so she's doing well. The getting married part is a little harder. We've explained to her that if she feels better in the house of her daughter than at the house with the guy, who isn't the dad of her daughter, than she should do what makes her happy and what's best for her.
Romina is the other one that came to church and she is great! She is the little sister of a bunch of members and she is just the next in line for baptism. She is a little uncertain about baptism and I think it's because she also goes to a catholic school. We helped her understand that she needs to listen to what God tells her and not what the other people around her say. She commited to pray and the work towards the 6th of July as her fecha bautismal.
This week really went well and we had a lot of success as a district and zone and for that I'm excited and happy. It makes me happy as well because I'm the leader and whether I like it or not it reflects on me how our district does and so I'm really happy that we are moving the work along and that we're are having so much success.
I love it here in Bella Union and I think it's a great place to end the mission. I'm not 100% sure that I won't be switched, but I wouldn't be surprised if I stayed.
I love you guys and I want you to know that I know that this is the true gospel. I know that if we want blessings that we need to obey the commandments of God. Like Elder Perry said in his talk in Conference. "Odedience to the ley (law) is Freedom."
I love you and hope you have a great week!
Elder Jordan Duke
Clockwise from top left; Elder Ramos, Peru (standing) Elder Rodriguez (Bolivia), Elder Duke, Children of ward mission leader, Elder Mendoza (Colombia).