Tuesday, June 23, 2009

June 22, 2009
Dear Folks,
¡No tengo fotos! Tal vez la proxima semana. Estoy tratando para encontrar algunos,
pero es bien dificil en mi area.
Elder Drain left this last Thursday, and now I´m with Elder Acu±a. He´s from
Argentina and is pretty talented at pretty much everything. I think we´ll do pretty
well in the area, at least with numbers. He´s my third comp in two and a half months,but I´m getting the hang of this whole teaching people in spanish thing. However, there´s still a lot of room to improve.
I didn´t get any packages this week, just one other letter. It was the one from you with the talks for the plane ride. They were nice to read though.
Well, not much more to talk about. We´ve had a bunch of appointments with
investigators that aren´t progresing.
Don´t worry. We´re working hard here. The problem is that we need moth
investigators and instead all we have are cockroaches. (It depends on what they do with light)

Hasta luego,
Elder Rickords

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

June 15, 2009

Dear Folks,

Thanks for the questions, I’ll try to answer some of them. Well, about my life, the weather is fine. For a while it was sunnier than usual for this time of year but now it´s been raining a lot. It´s also pretty cool, so we wear our suits everyday. In the mornings and at night it gets pretty cold, but we stay pretty warm with walking and our sweaters if we´re just studying in the house.
The members feed us, for lunch aand we really appreciate it. Since food is so expensive here, that´s pretty much the only meal we get except for breakfast, which we make ourselves. Nothing new with the food, it´s pretty much normal Colombian, rice, beans, and meat with juice. I´m accustomed to it now, so there´s nothing that we eat here that really bugs me.
Cambios this week, which means Elder Drain leaves this Thursday, but I leave him on Wednesday at the office. My new companion is from Argentina. I hear he´s pretty cool and everyone I talked to likes him.
The Area Presidency has two new members, so two of them already left this area for their vacations before taking up their new assignments. The new Mission President takes over this next month, but the old one will live somewhere in the mission because he´s from here.
We walk a lot, sometimes we take the busses, but mostly we walk. We walk a lot.
I´ll try to get some pictures for next week, but there´s not much to take pictures of here.

Con mucho amor,
Elder Rickords

PS Tell dad and Grandpa happy Father´s Day. I love them both and miss them. Tell Dad I work hard, follow the rules and do everything he taught me to. And tell them I love it here.

June 8, 2009

Dear Folks,

No I don´t have any pictures, but maybe in two weeks. Glad to hear that life is good. Hope you´re all enjoying this wonderful time of year.
Well, about me, we´ve now knocked every door in our area, and have found a few more people who might be interested, but they're not always consistent in keeping apppointments, which leaves us wasting more time. However, we will work hard until... forever. It looks like I´ll stay here for the next transfer, yay.
I feel kinda bad for Elder Drain. He said to me the other day “I kept trying to figure out why I was sent here for my last cambio. First I thought maybe I was here to baptize someone, then I thought maybe I should get things ready for the next transfer, but that´s not it...” So he´s pretty sure his purpose here is to train me, which is great since he was a Zone Leader and is very well known in the mission. So he keeps telling me things as we walk, and we practice teaching and speaking more than I ever have in the mission. I´m learning lots and only hope I´ll be able to remember it all, which is why I write it down. Anyways, next cambio I´ll be ready for almost anything.
About my area, we´ve lost contact with our golden investigator because he´s always “too busy”. He doesn´t return any of our calls and didn´t come to church this week. However, one of our investigators did come, which made us really happy. She said she would, but the night before she was having doubts. We have a few more investigators, but they are investigadores eternos, because they always come to Church but have issues that are keeping them from baptism. They´ve been coming for almost a year now, and we´ve really been pushing them to progress.
So I´ve been here for two months now, so I can understand most of what they say and can have a conversation with any one of them. However, most of the members in the ward keep telling us that we shouldn´t be dissappointed if our numbers aren´t very high. That´s a big problem, because if everybody expects very little of us it´s hard to get the members excited.
Well, that´s about it. I know why no one wants to get transferred here, but we make tons of contacts and this last week of the cambio is gonna be great.

Con mucho amor,
Elder Rickords

June 1, 2009

Dear Folks,

Elder Alvarado has been transferred, and now I have a new gringo companion. He´s Elder Drain from Arizona. This is his last cambio, only my second, and it´s in the hardest, lowest baptizing area in the mission. I feel kind of bad about it, but he´s cool, but kinda quiet and a lot thinner than me. The apartment was kinda quite, but now we´ve started talking. Sometimes I find it hard to be me in conversation because I can only talk with a personality in english. But I´m learning lots from Elder Drain and I hope he can enjoy his last cambio.
So after this cambio half my district will be wiped out again, probably me too. My district has now become the place where the dying go to die, since three end their missions this transfer.
Now that my comp works we do 20 street contacts a day, but rarely get invited in. When we do, the people never let us in for another appointment. We had a special fast for one of our investigators who needs to find a job so he can leave his girlfriend. He´s been an investigator for almost half a year now but can´t be baptized because he lives with his girlfriend. Also, we have one bright ray of hope in a reference who is extremely interested in the church, but is very busy with work so we haven´t been abe to visit him yet. He´s our best bet for baptism.
So now we´re going around to all the members to get them excited and to ask for references. The members in our area are great people but not very excited about missionary work. We'll keep working on it. Also, I´ll be helping now with those English classes, and we're planning on using the Gospel for that. We´ll start with a hymn and our reading mterial will be the Liahona. Any suggestions on how to teach them all english?
I got my first letters from other people this week. Tell JJ I say hi, Paige too. It sounds like my blog needs updating, from what I hear. Also, tell everyone to use DearElder since it´s a lot cheaper than sending letters through the mail, I think. But if they do send mail, I think they have to send it to the office.
Well that´s about all for now.

Lots of love.
Elder Rickords