Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Terra Nova

August 25, 2010

Things have been going well for the most part. Gelcimar/Russellyce (the couple we married and baptized) were confirmed on Sunday. It went really well, and they are looking like good members that will stay active. We are now just doing our best to find more families to teach and baptize.

This week Elder Wolfe has been having some health problems, so we haven’t been able to work as much as either of us would like. He ended up throwing up at lunch on Saturday and has been having some stomach problems. But he’s been getting better, so we are hoping to finish out the week well....He’s a good guy though. I’ve really grown to like Elder Wolfe. He’s a good worker and missionary. I’ll miss him after transfers...

Speaking of transfers, I found out on Saturday if I go or stay. Some members are worried I’ll get transferred, and everyone is trying to give us lunch on Monday, just in case I yeah. Might be a little interesting. I honestly don’t know if I’m going to be transferred. Something tells me I’m going to leave. But I also kind of want to stay, just because I've become such good friends with the ward members and my baptisms. And when you want to stay in an area, you always get transferred. But I also have been here for such a long time....I’m not really sure what I want. I guess whatever the Lord wants....whatever the outcome is, hopefully I’ll be happy. So, next week I might be sending an email from Tefé....legit...I just hope my berimbau and bow and arrow get done in time. If not, I’m making Elder Wolfe send them to me.

So, before I forget, I’ll tell one of the more interesting stories of the week. After church and meetings we were heading to talk to an investigator when one of my old investigators stopped me on the road. He was drunk out of his mind (not too surprising....) and really wanted to talk with us. He pronounces my name Heypley. So I heard him call me from down the road and came running. He greeted me with a drunk hug that lasted about 20 seconds. I love drunk people. I know you all are jealous. He then started telling me how mad he was. I started telling him he needed to calm down, but it didn’t do much. He almost resembles The Hulk. He would randomly scream and make noises saying, "I’m ANGRY" then would jump up and down. I asked him what was wrong. He told me his wife was drunk, and he was mad at her. I resisted saying, "well yeah you idiot. Look at yourself..." he then got really serious and said, "Heypley, I have a gun. I’m going to kill my wife." I flipped, and responded, "you can’t kill your wife!" he said, "I’m mad and I’m going to kill my wife, you want to see my gun?" Oh gosh....I spent about 30 minutes talking to him, telling him he couldn’t kill his wife. He wanted to walk with us, so we went for a little walk. For a while I tried to convince him to give me his gun (by the way, its illegal to own a gun in this country...) but he wouldn’t give it to me. So, I tried reasoning with him. Not like its easy reasoning with a drunk person. I said, "Look, if you kill your wife you'll end up in jail." He responded, "I don’t care." Ok....that didn’t work. then I tried, Well, what about your kids....? You want them to grow up on the streets, fatherless and motherless, left to fend for themselves?" That got to him. He stopped for a second and said, "yeah...what about my kids..?" So I jumped on the answer and started elaborating on how his children would grow up without parents. without food. maybe even using drugs and selling who knows what to get money. It seemed to work. He walked with us, with his arm around my comp (Which Elder Wolfe really enjoyed by the way...) and said that he would bury his gun, not kill his wife and thanked us for the help. I saw the newspaper the next day and didn’t see anything about a dead woman killed by her drunk, I'm assuming he didn’t kill her. One more life saved. Moral of the story, give references to the missionaries so they don’t have to teach drunk idiots on the road. I was only scared for my life a few times in that 30 minutes....

So, yeah. Lets see. what else is new....Oh yeah. So, since I’ve been here almost 6 months, I’ve been running out of lunch messages. So, I’ve started telling stories. This week I’ve been telling one of Grandpa’s Hawaiian folklore stories about the 2 brothers that found the pearls on the beach, and then tie it into the gospel and missionary work. Its been going pretty well actually. I’m digging it. It also scores points with the kids. So, yeah. thanks Grandpa! If you guys at home (dad...) remember any of the others hit me up with an email or something, cuz now everyone is wanting stories for their lunch message...

Well, that’s pretty much what has been going on this week. Just another week in the life. Today we played soccer and made tacos. Legit. Hope all you guys have a great week. Love you!

August 18, 2010

Well its been another good week on the mish. The wedding turned out great! It was well attended, and the bride did a good job making everything really nice. Only prob is that it started like an hour late, but that’s pretty much normal for here. But, I took some good pics. I’ll send some to you guys.

The baptism went down on Sunday. Everything went pretty well. Only prob is that the bride’s brother (the Elders Quorum President of our ward) was supposed to baptize her, but he got called in last second to work. So, they asked me to baptize them instead. I always like performing the baptismal ordinance, and it went really well, but I think it would have been more special if it was the bride’s brother that baptized her. The baptism was also really well attended and some good testimonies were borne about baptism. Everything turned out great.
For dealing with such problems with the papers for this wedding and working with this couple (I’ve been working with them since I pretty much got here...) everything turned out really well. Only prob is that Bishop didn’t go to the baptism, and was just sitting in his office during the baptism. But the counselors went and were really supportive. I love baptizing families and doing weddings. It makes the baptismal meeting that much more special. I was happy with the way things went down

This Monday we had zone conference and reviewed one of the trainings that Pres gave to the leaders 2 weeks ago. It went well, and its always nice to get to see a bunch of old friends...

Transfers go down in 2 weeks, and I’m pretty much ready to leave. I’m kinda banking on it actually. I found myself even making a list of members, converts, and investigators that I need to say goodbye to. I just hope that its not bad karma and I’ll end up staying. I guess I wouldn’t mind the area for another transfers, but this is the longest time I’ve been with a comp and its always nice to just get a little switch. We'll see what goes down though. Whatever the Lords will is...

I’m trying to think what else is new. Not really too much. Just trying to find more good families to teach and baptize. Our mission is doing fairly well. Over the past years the mission was baptizing a lot, but not too many men and families. These past few months our mission has been baptizing more than 25% men which is pretty legit. President is really trying to have us work with men and families. So, I’m looking for another wedding to mark...

Well, that’s pretty much all that I can think of...A lot of the week we were just getting ready for the wedding and everything. Dad, happy birthday! Mom, thanks for the package on the way. Erynn, have a last good week at home. Have a good week guys.


Elder Eric Stapley

Monday, August 16, 2010

Terra Nova

Hey guys,

Well, sorry, but I don't have too much time. Today, we had a churrasco and played some soccer with the zone. I'm digging the zone. Cool Zone leaders, a lot of friends. It's fun....

So, this week has gone pretty well. It looks like we are finally going to have the (recently postponed) wedding this Saturday and the baptisms on Sunday. They just need to pass the interviews tomorrow, which I'm hoping won't be a problem. We marked 2 more baptism dates, and if everything goes as plans, we should have a strong transfer--it's best to leave some unfinished work for the new elders coming into the area. We marked the baptism date of a man named Moses. He needs to stop smoking, so we'll see if he's ready to get baptised this month. I hope so, just so it can be said that I baptised Moses...

I've been pretty proud of my district too lately. Right now we have enough baptismal dates to baptize 15 people between our 3 duplas this month. With each of us baptizing at least 1 man and a family. Legit. We'll see how it goes, but things are looking pretty good....

Transfers go down at the end of this month. I think I'm ready to leave. Of course I'll miss the people, but sometimes it's nice to just get a new area and a fresh start. I guess we'll see what goes down though. Sounds like there are some openings in Tefé....some city in the middle of nowhere.

This week, I've been trying to put everything I learned in last weeks' trainings with Pres into action and it's been paying off. I shared one of the trainings with my district and really tried to prepare a good training and it looks like it worked. I've gotten compliments from the entire district and one Elder even said it helped him to mark a baptismal date with someone he's been working with for a long time. We spent a lot more time studying the scriptures during the training and I tried to have the people in the district talking at least half the time with stories, feedback, ideas and all that good stuff. I'm excited and the work is going strong.

My entire zone sends their love. We'll just say the Red Robin seasoning is getting famous...

Anyway, that's pretty much what went down since I emailed last. Hope everything is going well at home. Have a great week! tcahu

Elder Eric Stapley

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Terra Nova

Hey guys,

Well, sorry for not writing on Wednesday. I've been in meetings this entire week with all the District and Zone Leaders. So, I'm taking off a little bit of time for my P-day today. I didn't even have time to let you guys know. So sorry about the delay.

Things have been going well. The trainings were a lot of fun...It was nice to see some old friends and get some great trainings from Pres. I've been spending the entire week with Elder Soares, another DL who is way cool. It's been a fun time. The trainings really didn't present any new material, but just reminded us of things we already knew or that we need to apply better, such as teaching more of the "investigator" than the "lesson." And teaching by using a lot of questions. I learned some good things that I'm going to apply and pass for the district. We even got Subway for lunch. We'd show up each day and have breakfast (made for us!), get some trainings, do practices, and we really studied the scriptures. It was a good time. Pres even gave us an extra lesson....eternal marriage and how to find your future wife. It was a hit....

The wedding situation (I referred to last week) turned out better than I thought it would. The family was pretty upset that the wedding didn't happen on July 31st and there were some tears shed. But, overall I guess it turned out ok. The wedding should now happen on Aug. 14th and the baptisms on the 15th....I'm just hoping everything still ends up going well....

Transfers are going down in 3 weeks or so. I'm ready to go. I love this ward. I love my baptisms. I love the people. I'd like to hit up an interior area in the middle of nowhere. Like Tefé or something. Just to work with a little branch or something. I feel like it'd be a fun time. I guess I'll find out soon though.

I've been busy doing baptism interviews and it's been a while since I've even been in my area. It was all good. But hope you guys have a great week.

Elder Eric C. Stapley