Just some updates for our zone, we have transfers on this tuesday and wednesday. Luckily my companion and i will be staying together but next transfer president told elder K that he will be released from being a zone leader. So i already know that in 6 weeks i will be getting a new companion. But we don't' think aboout that now :) We do have some changes in our zone and we are gonna have 3 district leaders that are either brand new DL's or have only been it for 1 transfer. So we will have to do some major training with those guys to make sure they are on top of things and we are also getting two greenies in our zone and i don't know why but i'm just super excited to have some more greenie fire in our zone. I think we need it. They aren't even my greenies and yet i feel like they are coming into our temple zone family it's fun! Sothat will all happen on tuesday. Then next week, we are going to Zone leader council in eugene again and i will get to see puertas and hopefully Elder Gomez too. I found out he's getting transferred to Springfield in the Eugene zone so next monday i think we are all gonna go up and do some spanish work with them, that will be so fun.
Ok, now for this week. We had some big surprises that i wish were good things haha. Jessica does have a baptismal date now for the 14th of may and she was pretty excited about it, but she needs to quit smoking. She committed to it, but slipped and so now we are just working with her. I think we are gonna try and give up something with her so she feels like we are going through something similar. She is awesome and i still think her girls are the sweetest things ever haha. There was sooo much drama this week though holy smokes. I don't even know if i can explain it all.
Oh but even before that. Friday, at our zone conference, my teaching went great. It was soo fun to teach with elder nelson, who by the way, is now going to be a zone leader which is pretty cool for him. It's a bummer that we are losing him from our zone because he tears it up big time. But we taught really well, everybody had good things to say about it and we felt really happy afterward. We had a big plan and a fun activity that really could have gone either way, so we were greatful that it went well instead of downhill haha! We taught well, and the musical performance we did was awesome too! I wish i could send you the song. It's a song taht one of the missionaries wrote here and it's about missionary work and the OEM (oregon eugene mission) and it's soo awesome. Me and Elder Fiatoa sang and then we had another elder Kaumaitotoya do a little fijian part where he talked in fijian and we sang behind him. It was great! The spirit was really stong too as we sang ,we couldn't help but smile :)
Now for the drama...
So bubba camacho was baptized last weekend and was supposed to get confirmed this weekend. His dad was out of town working, and surprised eveyone by coming home on friday night. But this was actually the problem. He used to b an alcoholic and hadn't drunk for two months. He was doing really good and i honestly love the man. BUT, he drank that night with his worker buddies. He came home and freaked out at Kelly his wife, and Jessica and MOnica, the ones with the little girls. He accused them of going out and partying and stuff and thye were all just sitting at home and then Carlos starts screaming at kelly and all this crazy stuff. Then Carlos tried to do some things with Monica that were inappropriate but luckily they didn't do anything and he called the police on them and told the police that monica and jessica had drugs in their home with their litle girls and so the police went and checked and found nothing and then monica told the police that carlos was illegal and in their police computers he had two names that he was going by but the same picture and all this stuff. Then the police go over to the camachos and kelly answers the door and this is at 3:00 am mind you, and she says that he's not there! Even though he was, she didn't want to put him in jail. He has done a lot of horrible things in the past specifically when he has been drinking to kelly and so for her, it's just reliving all of these horrible memories so she was crying and just didn't know what to do. If the child service people came by and carlos was drunk, her son would get taken away againtoo so there was so much going into it that carlos was putting in jeopardy. Such a crazy time. This lasted all throughout saturday night. So on sunday morning we finally get a hold of kelly who, the poor thing, is so just distraught. She says everything is good to come to church and that they will be a fw minutes late. When we talked to her sunday morning, we didn't know anything about what had happened the night before either. But she ends up not coming at all because her daughter went to a party the night before that got raided by the cops and she was stuck in detox on sunday morning so kelly had to go pick her up and deal wth that situation and wasn't able to make it to church, niether could her son bubba who was supposed to be confirmed. AHH i was so frustrated with everyone! And then because there was all this drama with kelly and her husband carlos, jessica and monica were mad at carlos and kind of at kelly too so thye didn't end up coming to church just because of their late night and who knows what other excuse. Then the other 4 people we were supposed to have at church didn't end up coming either becuase of one thing or another. It was a super depressing morning and the only light really shed on it was when we got to play "love is spoken here" for the primary kids on the ukulele. It was really pretty and invited at least a little bit of the spirit back into our lives. We were trying so hard to keep happy and so we bore our testimonies too. Man it was a super rough one though. Then later after church, we went and had a bbq with a recent convert family who is trying to move out of their apartment because it is full of black mold! The family is so sweet and innocent but they don't speak much english so the owners of the complex are really not treating them fairly and are making them pay all this rent for their unsafe apartment, that they can barely afford and now thye gave them a 60 day notice as well. We have to go talk with them to figure out what is really going on. and if they really have to pay all this stuff. Other people have gone to court for this stuff and gotten a new place for free, so we don't want the Ibarrah family to get tricked or taken advantage of. But we had an awesome bbq and we brought the meat, (5pounds of carne asada for like 8 or 9 people). We ate so much and we had horchata and rice with egg in it and these yummy beans and pico de gallo. Man it was quite a meal for a fast sunady ahah. That put us in good spirits though.
After ward we stopped by kelly's to see if everything was okay from last night and the morning. And we find them all outside lounging in the sun. And carlos was out there too talking with one of his friends. We see kelly reading her gospel principles book which was pretty cool hah. We went and said hey to carlos. Ths was the first time we had seen him too and he was kind of em barrased to see us. But we just said hi and then talked to kelly for a while. Man i cannot tell you how much stuff this lady has gone through. It broke my heart, to hear the life that she has lead and then to know how strong she is in the church right now. Even though she oculdn't make it to church she is out in the middle of the day studying her gospel principles book and things she doesn't understand. She has been through so much though from abuse, to drug addictions, to rape, to going to jail for stabbing one of the guys that did stuff to her. It was some of the most horrible things i've ever heard and yet i felt so close and desirous to help her. She is amazing man, i wish you knew her. I can't believe the stuff she has put up with from Carlos too, he has done horrible things to her and she has forgiven him. She has a huge heart. But we talked to her about everything that had happened and wht's the plan i guess and she is all for the church, at this point she was like, it is all i have right now to keep going. She is like the mom of the whole neighborhood ha, worries about all the needs of everyone like jessica and monica, and her own family and she has just got so much on her plate. So she says she is just focusing on getting through her recovery and keeping her son. She said that she is gonna let carlos stay at their home but as of right now doesn't want much of a relationship with him so she said she will see if that changes over time. Thatnight we got her and bubba out of the house thoguh and went to a cool firside for recent converts and investigators. It was an informal meeting and mostly all the recnt converts talked and it was cool to hear their testimonies and questions that they had. It was good.
It was such a crazy weekend and full of soo much emotion. We saw jessica and monica too who don't want much interaction with carlos and in turn it kind of includes kelly so we are struggling to figure out what we do with thm cause theyre coming to the same branch ya know? It will take a lot of prayer and figuring thins out. It's hard cause we cannot pick sides and so we just play neutral with everyone. Oh and we talked to carlos last night too and just said hey man we love you and are here to help, but first you gotta want to help yourself. He was down to start working and said he really has been praying every day to have the strength and desire to not drink again. He realized he is crazy when is drinkng and so i guess that's a start. We will see what happens this week.
ahhh, i'm really tired. I Just want to go play dodgeball and get this all out hahah. (we are playing today as a zone :)) We are doing good though. This situation will be fixed and we know that Heavenly Father's will, will be done as long as we are working close with the spirit so, i guess for right now that's all we can do.
Our other problem is finding. We still are down on people to teach. We found a cool couple on saturday and are hoping for some potencial with them. They didn't come to church but at the same time we are feeling really hopeful just because when we talked with them and taught them, He had kind of like a Q and A and We answered a lot of questions and promised him blessings as he learned more about the church and then he had to split so we didn't really get a chance to share the restoration but he read the plan of salvation pamphlet and he was asking us a ton of questions about it. The coolest part was that he was like, there were two lady missionaries here the other day that talked to me and gave me this pamphlet and then you guys show up too. I figure God is trying to tell me something. And we were like...YEAH HE IS! The sisters too are missionaries in our zone that gave Jose to us as a referral. So this week we are looking forward to seeing him and his wife and little boy.
This is the last week of the transfer and i think i'll be a long one haha. We have to do a lot of finding this week to get our teaching pool up for the beginning of next transfer. Thanks for your prayers and thoughts and letters. They mean so much to me really. Oh and for my b-day package this week. I almos feel bad asking for anything but, there are these scripture cases that if somehow, you can get a hold of, i would go crazy! The only place i KNOW that they sell themis in the mtc, but they are little cases for your triple and bible. They just fit right in, and the ones in the MTC had little mexican designs on them that looked almost knitted i guess you could say. But they are for spanish scriptures so they are a little bit bigger than my normal quad sized english ones. If anyone has any connections to someone in the mtc, i will pay for the cases, the shipping, and whatever else there is hahah.
Anyways, yeah if you can't find them, don't worry about it at all, i can do wit hjust sticking htem in my backpack. But again, i can't wait to talk to you soon! I can't believe in just one week i will get to hear your voices and see your faces! I love you all so much and pray every day for you!
Love Elder Edwards