26 April 2010

Not much new

As for the work here, we are keeping on with the daily grind and trying to keep our investigators going strong. The biggest challenge is getting them all to church when we cannot be in both sets of meetings. And this week it seems like the branch president threw in the towel for sacrament meeting. When I called up a member to see if there were any investigators in church she said that there were a couple but that sacrament meeting only lasted about 25 minutes. The branch president spoke for a minute after the sacrament and then ended the meeting. I’m not sure what the reason behind that is, but I hope the investigators had a good experience. We had a good sacrament meeting in Simoca and we had a couple of good visits. The district president invited a couple of his friends to church and we were able to talk with one of them that came, but we won´t be able to teach her for a while. She has a lot of problems, mostly with her husband, and she is afraid that it will cause even more problems if she starts to take the discussions.

As for the rest of the week, it has been pretty good. Our apartment is kind of falling apart and since we have a contract and cannot find somewhere else to live, we have to live in a construction zone for the next couple of weeks. That will be interesting. It’s kind of creepy having people in your house while you’re not there, but I’m going to take all of my valuable stuff and put it in a suitcase and give it to one of the other elders to hang on to it.

As for everything else here, things are good. We had a super good zone conference and I feel better than ever after having a good chat with the mission president, he really is super awesome and gives really good counsel. There isn’t a whole lot to tell, just a peaceful week here in the mission. I wish you all the best in everything that you do and I will keep on praying for ya all.

Elder Jeff Rose

19 April 2010

Sound Advice!

How is it all going? Wow, what news! Thanks for letting me know about the baptisms of Sean’s parents. That is so cool. I was hoping that that would happen sometime. And all the moves in the family; everything is going to be completely different when I am back huh?

Well, things here are going good. Transfers came and went peacefully. Nothing really happened. A couple of things changed but everything in our district is almost exactly the same. There was only one elder who left because he finished his mission and so he was replaced, that´s all. As for that everything is going fairly well. Monteros and Simoca are still there and still moving along at their own pace. We are looking for new people and having success here and there; trying to get the members involved in order to get more fellowshipping and references. It is the key no matter how big or small the area you are in. Even in a place like Gilroy you could have so much more success if the members would just do a little bit of missionary work. All it takes is a few minutes and a couple questions and a listening ear to be able to share the gospel and, who knows, perhaps change the course of someone´s life. I hope that all of you are willing and actively engaged in doing the Lord´s work. If not, there is improvement to be done.

One of the quotes that mom sent me about how if we are judging people, we don´t have the time to love them is so true. That hit deep after some things that have happened this past week. In the area Elder Castro and I are in there are quite a few issues between members and leaders and all sorts of stuff between the members. Sometimes, I don’t know why, but we let other people´s issues become our issues when they really shouldn’t get that far. I am not talking on a level of helping other people out and resolve those issues but rather on the level of allowing the reason for their problem to give us the same problem. I hope I am getting this off clearly. I’ll try to explain. I was doing some pondering after church on Monday and realized something. There is a family who is super good with the missionaries in the branch, they have their own son on a mission, they are all ex missionaries... you get the picture. Well anyway, for some reason, some misunderstanding, some offense, something personal with the current branch president, none of them have callings in the branch. It doesn't make sense, but that is that. Now this is where the lesson comes in. I started letting that bother me on a personal level because of the friendship I have formed with that family and before I realized it, I started to have a somewhat standoffish disposition with the branch president. We are all imperfect, but instead of looking for the good, it became so easy to find his character flaws. And it began to have an effect, not necessarily a bad one, but nonetheless it had an effect on the things in the branch. It never became a topic of conversation, nor something that either of us commented, but nonetheless, it was there. Now I realize that it was exactly what President Hinckley (I think it was Hinckley spoke of when he related the story of the wedge left between the tree branches that eventually weakened the tree to the point of splitting it into pieces. Those are the things that we have to self reflect on and get out of our lives before they even start to have an effect, before others even notice that they are there. Perhaps a small rock in our shoe doesn't cause a need to amputate at the knee, but the nagging blisters and calluses will eventually cause discomfort and lead to a growing pain if we do nothing to remove the root of the problem. And when that day comes that we have let things go too far and it I necessary to amputate, what are we going to say to ourselves? "I wish I had taken just one moment to stop, examine the problem and take out the small pebble."

It is so much easier to take care of things earlier than to wait and wait. Take care of the stuff in your lives on your own with the help of the Lord before you have to get another one of his servants involved. Because once we let things go too far, the doctors keep charging and there are lasting scars. The best form of repentance is a solemn, personal private repentance between us and the Lord. And why do I say that? Because if we can carry out such a repentance, we are being humble and submissive to the will of the Lord and we understand his gospel. "Greater the joy of he who repenteth of his own accord, than that of him who is admonished by the servant of the Lord."

That was the lesson I learned and had to teach myself through prayer and meditation this week. Though it may have come late and I would have avoided many problems if I had stopped the problem at the source, I have learned a life lesson and for that I am grateful. I love you all. I hope you keep on progressing in the gospel, I hope to be with someone someday who´s testimony makes me want to grow mine own, someone whose spirituality exceeds mine own, someone who love´s the Lord as much as I do, someone who is worthy of entering the temple, someone who has learned this same lesson and applied it not only to those difficulties with other people, but to every sin or transgression in their life and can stand before a representative of the Lord and witness for their worthiness to enter the Lord´s temple. And I strive to be that same person, so that when someone else says that same thing, I know that I am not expressing impossible wishes. I always hope for someone far better than I am to bring me up and I constantly strive to be that same person who excels in spirituality and love of the Lord. Take care. Till next week love you all chau.

12 April 2010

I'm loving my mission!

Hey everyone, how are things going in the world? First of all to the questions about my safety, all is well. the mission president and his wife tend to pay very close attention to the circumstances of the sister missionaries and don´t take chances in situations like that, it is not the first time something like that has happened. But I believe they are all safe. They are now in San Pedro, Jujuy, close to where I was last serving.

This last week has gone well. We are trying to keep some investigators on track for their baptismal dates that are coming up. We are teaching several people, one who was a monaguillo (don´t know how to say that in English) for the catholic church, one who is the daughter of a less active family, an old lady who has lost a lot of family members recently and a friend of a member who is studying in the university. Things with them are going well. We had a really good experience this Sunday to fast for them and we hope that they will really have a growing desire to do those things that we invite them to do because we know that it is the best thing for them.
As for the area and all that, we have had little rain so things are drying out, but we have been having problems with the apartment and it looks as if we will be moving to a new place somewhere once we find it. So that is what we are looking for right now is a new place to live. This Wednesday (in 2 days) we will have the zone conference. This time around it will be very interesting because not only are all the missionaries invited, but also the ward, branch stake and district leaders from our respective areas and all the youth who are preparing for missions. It will be a little more pressure to make a good impression on the leaders since there have been major problems recently in these areas with leaders falling off and lots of issues between the leadership and missionaries and members and all that. We are, little by little, trying to resolve all of those issues, but like President Northcutt told me in an email he sent me, “as missionaries for the most part we are just not in a position and not equipped to handle all the problems that are thrown at us and it really is not our calling to solve those problems, mostly it all comes down to patience and hope that all the stuff, the roots of the problems, will work themselves out to allow the work to go forward.”

I’m loving the time that I am spending here. I just realized something a little creepy, the sister missionaries that started their missions with me are finishing up this next transfer. That was super odd. We´re cracking down and trying to get to work on all the stuff we need to do and always are trying to improve. There definitely is no shortage of spiritual experiences in the mission; too many to tell, but just know that the Lord definitely blesses his missionaries and watches out for them. I thank you all for your prayers and Elder Castro asked me to thank you for praying for him as well. He is a great kid and he is learning a lot. Together we are having a lot of good experiences. I can tell that I have definitely been growing in the mission and I deal with things better than I did before. I’m definitely not a pro, but things are coming into place. I love you guys and I pray for you always. Take care.
Elder Rose

Zone Conference

Stick Bug

Tropic of Capricorn

Bee experience and harvesting honey

05 April 2010

Hey Guys

Hey Fam... another one coming your way. No te preocupes, está en castellano al final ;)

So yeah, everything is going pretty well around here. This last week there isn't a whole lot to tell as far as the work goes cuz of some problems that we had. Not problems really but yeah. When I said in my last email that I had to send Elder Castro to Salta, he ended up not getting back until Wednesday night at 11. Then we stayed in Concepcion for the night because we had district meeting there the next day. Then when we got back from district meeting we went to lunch and then studied then went to Simoca and had a couple good lessons. Then the next morining when i got up Castro said he was sick, so we didn´t do anything all day cause he was sleeping, and then the next day we had conference and the day after. Of course the highlight of it all was conference. It was super good. i loved it. Like always it makes you want to be a better person and the talks really were amazing this time around. I saw a couple people I knew in the chiors, I was super surprised to see a kid I was in the MTC with, Justin Arnold. He´s actually getting this email. Which by the way reminds me, if you´re reading this Justin, write me back about your scripture cases. I´ve got some questions. But anyway, it was fun. The work is going well. We keep finding new people and now the trick is hanging on to them. I trust in the promise that I believe it was Elder Ballard made, that God is always preparing people out there and we have just got to go looking for them. That´s the plan right now. We have some good people and I am excited to see if we can kick them into gear. I have also heard some cool things from past areas about people who are listening to the missionaries and those who have gotten baptized. It really is a super cool feeling to know that there are fruits of you labor that get harvested after you have left that labor. It´s true of all callings in the church really. We have always got to remember that we need to put our best effort into everything so that we can see what happens afterwards.

Today for pday we made a cool trip. We went to a place called Tafí del Valle, a little touristy place about 2 hours from my area. It was nice and cold there and it got me all excited for the cold winter, but then I got back to my area and my hopes were dashed by the 85 degree temperature. It's not too bad but after so much hottness it would be nice to have a change. Anyway, I want to send pictures but I am trying to find a computer that will let me. It´s just a luck of the draw thing. One of these days i´ll get lucky. Well, I´ll finish up. It was good to hear from you. Good luck to all you guys. I love you a ton. Take Care.

Elder Jeff Rose

Ahora si... jaja.

Así que sí, todo va bastante bien por aquí. Estasemana pasado no hubo mucho que contar. Hay algunos promblemitas que hemos tenido. No problemas realmente pero sí. Cuando dije en mi último correo que tenía que mandar elder Castro a Salta , no volvio hasta miércoles a las 23 hrs. Entonces nos quedamos en concepcion porque había reunión de ditrito allí al día siguiente. Luego, cuando volvimos de la reunión de distrito nos fuimos a almorzar y luego estudiar luego fuimos a Simoca y tuvimos un par de buenas lecciones. Entonces la mañana siguiente cuando me levanté Castro dijo que estaba enfermo. Por eso no hicimos nada en todo día (estaba durmiendo) y al día siguiente tuvimos la conferencia y el día después. Por supuesto el punto culminante de todo ello fue la conferencia. Fue super bien. Me la encantó. Como siempre te hace querer ser una mejor persona y los discurso eran realmente increíble. Vi un par de personas que conocí en los coros, yo estaba super sorprendido al ver a un chico con quien yo estaba en el CCM. Pero de todos modos. Fue muy divertido. El trabajo va bien. Seguimos encontrando a gente nueva y ahora el truco está seguir con ellos. Confío en la promesa de que creo que fue Elder Ballard hizo, que Dios siempre está preparando a la gente allí y en que sólo tenemos que ir a buscarlos. Ese es el plan ahora mismo. Tenemos algunas buenas personas y estoy emocionado de ver si somos capaces de animarles a seguir adelante. También he oído algunas cosas interesantes de las áreas anteriores sobre las personas que están escuchando a los misioneros y los que se han bautizado. Lo que realmente es una sensación super genial saber que hay frutos de trabajo que usted recibe después de haberse ido de alli. Es cierto de todos los llamamientos en la iglesia realmente .. Siempre hemos llegado a recordar que tenemos que poner nuestro mejor esfuerzo en todo lo posible para que podamos ver lo que sucede después.

Hoy en día para PDAY hicimos un viaje de diez. Fuimos a un lugar que se llama Tafí del Valle, un pequeño lugar a 2 horas de mi área. Era agradable y el frío allí y me hizo trunky para el invierno, pero luego volví a mi zona y mis esperanzas fueron destrozadas por los 30 grados que estaba haciendo. de todos modos. Quiero enviar fotos pero estoy tratando de encontrar una compu que me deja hacerlo. es sólo una suerte del empate. uno de estos días voy a tener suerte. así que... bueno me despido. Fue bueno saber de ustedes. Un viaje feliz a mamá y papá y feliz aniversario y buena suerte a todos ustedes. Te quiero un montón. cuidense.