4 de Febrero 2013
This week has been an interesting week for us as we look for new people to teach. Our area is so big that we are now working on the other side of the area (about an hour walk from the area where we normally work) and it's just like opening a new area that hasn't seen missionaries for a while. The trouble is that we usually look for new people to teach by visiting those who were previously taught and never reached baptism for some reason, but in this area there really aren't any people that have really been taught more than once or twice by the missionaries in the past.
Surely you could easily see how big our area is in Google Maps. Just search for Reconquista, Santa Fe, Argentina. Our area is everything south of the calle carente-siete (street fourty-seven). Before the recent arrival of the sister missionaries, we also used to cover everything West of the ruta once (Route Eleven) and North of the carente-siete (street fourty-seven).
Part of the reason that we are starting to work in this "new" area is that the area that we have been working isn't seeing as much success as we've been used to having there. One of the sisters in the branch, Margarita Guzman, gave us a reference to go and teach her grand kids who live just a few blocks away from her and right next door to another member in the branch. Well we went over there one day to talk to them and it was just one of the three boys who was there, or at least that was awake. So, we told him that we'd come back at a different time so that we could talk with the whole family. So we went back last Tuesday and there were three little girls, the oldest being no more than ten, and two of the three boys that we were looking for. The three girls weren't relatives of Sister Guzman, but rather cousins from some other side of the family. Anyway, the girls told s that no one was home right as the two boys walked outside and told us that their mom was sleeping. Well that didn't make any sense because we could see a women walking around inside trying to sneak a look at us without being seen and the boys and girls both gave a conflicting story. So, Elder Waldron just spoke in a loud voice, not to the kids, but to the women walking around inside, and said, "Hello, Sister! Can we can talk with you for a minute?" Well her reply wasn't nearly what was expected because she more or less shrieked something that was barely understandable. She then repeated her response, but this time we understood. She told all those kids who were outside with us (her sons and nieces) to, "you´ll throw rocks at them and I'm going to call the police!" So we called back, "We´ll just come back another time when it´s better for you," and we left. A little ways down the street rocks started to land near us, so I don't think we'll be going to visit them anytime soon.
Later, we were talking with Sister Guzman and she asked us if we had a chance to visit her daughter and grand kids. I told her that we went by, but that she didn't want to talk to us. Sister Guzman then said that, "that doesn't mean we have to quit trying; she'll come around." I left out the part about her daughter being somewhat crazy.
We've just had a lot of sad experiences in that neighborhood this week though. Not sad for us, but sad to see. We went to visit a member who wasn't home, but her daughter was there with her boyfriend, who isn't a member. So we talked with the daughter for a bit and then at length asked if we could sit down with her and her boyfriend to share a scripture. The two of them have a baby together, but that's not really surprising (that only describes half of Argentina), and so we decided to teach them about prayer and having daily prayers as a family. Her boyfriend, Luciano, didn't really say much during our lesson on account of he being very shy (which is also why they don't go to church with her mom apparently). We didn't really want to take a long time in that lesson because we were told that Luciano was about to go to work and was just waiting for his ride, so we made the lesson short. Afterwards however, we were waiting on the corner of the neighborhood to meet a member from the other branch who was going to accompany us to our next lesson and we saw Luciano across the street hanging out with a bunch of vagos (bums that don't do anything; punks is another good word to describe them). Then we saw him sit down with them and start to get high by putting glue in a shopping bag and inhaling it. He saw that we could see him and kind of tried to hide, but not really. I'm pretty sure his girlfriend doesn't know a thing about it and Elder Waldron thinks that she knows and just has no idea what to do about it.
As Elder Sharapata and Elder Waldron continue in their quest to prove that their own city is better than the other, Elder Waldron has gone to a whole new level of arguing. The other day he was trying to explain how the restoration of the Gospel would never have taken place if it wasn't for Philadelphia and that we owe the restored church to his city's existence. It was funny because he was so wrong, however blasphemous it might have been.
So in this newish area that we are working in we found this family of two, a mom living with her daughter of sixteen years. So far, we´ve only had two lessons with them, but they have been really good. They're just very easy to talk to and we've had good conversation with them. They were going to be in the church yesterday, but they couldn't go because Laurea, the daughter, was sick with a fever that morning.
We taught another women with her daughter in this new area Sunday afternoon about the Plan of Salvation because she told us that she had a son die three years ago when he was thirteen. She told us that someone told her that one day Jesus would come to her door to give her son back, but then said that what we taught made more sense and felt right.
We were teaching Doming about the Priesthood, but he said that he doesn't want to receive because he doesn't feel ready. After talking with him for a bit he said that he doesn't want to have to bless the sacrament in front of the congregation because he would feel uncomfortable in front of everyone (we have a massive branch of thirty to forty people every week). So were going to keep working with him to help him feel prepared.