Monday, October 16, 2017

October 16, 2017 ~ Week 63

Hey Mom! This week was a good one, and we ended week 3 of the 12 weeks of training. Haha, it's good that we have two spanish speakers in the house, but it also makes me the official translator of the house so that communication is possible. It really is crazy though to think about how far I've come in the language from when I didn't think that I'd ever learn Spanish!

Training is going pretty well. Sometimes it's tough just because if we're going to do something, I've got to be the one to do it, but it's good! We're finding a lot, and doing a lot of teaching too!

We still don't have any baptismal dates in this area, but we should be getting a couple within the next two weeks!

My spiritual thought for the week comes from a quote from Isaiah in The Book of Mormon. 

In 1st Nephi 21:16, the Lord says:


16 Behold, have graven thee upon the palms of my hands; thy walls are continually before me.

I love the imagery that is there in that scripture, that it was for us that he suffered, and just as a carpenter gets callouses and blisters from creating beautiful works out of wood, the Savior has the evidence of his work for us in the palms of his hands. 

I hope you all have a great week! I love you so much, and I am so grateful for each and every one of you in my life!

Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, October 9, 2017

October 9, 2017 ~ Week 62

Hey Mom! 


As far life here, it´s pretty much the same, lots of finding, lots of teaching about the book of Mormon. But life is good. I like Canastíca. We have a really great ward here. It´s also kind of a nice mixture between the south and the capital. So we have a pretty good grocery store nearby, but there also aren´t a trillion people living in one small area. It´s more tranquilo.

There are four Elders in our house, and 10 people in our district. And in our house we have me and Elder Paolo, and Elder Ortiz from Mexico, and Elder Brutus who is also being trained. He's from the DR. 

I need to ask around about the waterfalls though! That sounds pretty awesome! I heard about some cool caves a little bit ago, and maybe we'll try and visit them one of  these P-days! 

Life is good though! I don't have any complaints. I think that my Spanish is getting even better now that I'm the only companion to speak and I feel like I am really perfecting the language with my grammar and everything! I hope this week is great for you all! I love you!

--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, October 2, 2017

Canastíca, San Cristóbal

Hey Mom! I´ll start by answering your questions!
I am now in the pueblo of Canastíca in the Zone of San Cristóbal which is the closest "Southern" Zone to the capital. It´s a super cool little town, and it´s got a pretty strong ward. And there were sisters here before, so the house is SUPER clean!

My companion is Elder Paolo, and he is from Yamhill, Oregon! He´s a super cool guy, and he´s really obedient, and ready to work hard! His spanish isn´t incredible, but neither was mine at 1 week in the field (Or anyone´s for that matter) and he has a strong desire to study and learn it, so he´ll be holding his own in lessons in no time. 

General Conference was great, and I made sure to get it hooked up in English so that my comp could understand... And I like it way better in English! My favorite talk was either President Nelson´s or Elder Anderson´s. I liked President Nelson´s because both our mission, and I personally have been focusing on the book of mormon recently, and I loved his question: "What is worth more to you: Diamonds, rubies, or The Book of Mormon?"

I also loved Elder Andersen´s because it felt very candid and genuine, and I liked the spirit that I could feel during the talk. I also loved the fact that he shared from Elder Hale´s talk, and the others and I felt like it was a nice tribute to Elder Hales. 

This week was great though! Lots of contacting! That's basically all we did, because we don't know anyone here, but it was a great week! I love you all, and I'm praying for each and every one of you!


--
Love, Elder Anderson


New area and a new companion


Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Leaving El Café

Dear Mom, 

First of all, that´s so sad to hear about Puerto Rico. It sounds like there are a lot of people suffering both there, and in Mexico with the earthquake. 

This week was a good one! We have a couple baptismal dates with a couple of our investigators, but on Saturday, my companion and I were surprised to hear that we are both leaving the area! But we don't know where to still! What we do know, is that we'll both be training, and that means we'll both be "Whiting Out" Or going to an area without having one of the companions familiar with the area! So that will be a challenge. It'll mean a lot of work, and a lot of finding and knocking doors, but I'm excited for the challenge! 

That means I have to say goodbye to a few people here, which is always a little sad. I'm just really excited to see where I'm going though!

Anyway, I hope you all have a really great week! I love and am praying for you all!

--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, September 18, 2017

Hurricane Maria

We received another letter from the Mission President Monday evening concerning Hurricane Maria.  This has been a busy hurricane season in the Caribbean and our thoughts and prayers are with all those affected by the hurricanes throughout the Caribbean and the United States.  We have seen and experienced firsthand the devastation and know of the physical and emotional toll that hurricanes take on individuals and communities as we lived in Louisiana during Hurricane Katrina in 2005.  We are grateful for a wonderful mission president and his wife who are taking such good care of the missionaries and also easing the fears of the parents.   ~ Paula 


Dear Parents, Bishops, and Stake Presidents, 

We are now planning for Hurricane Maria which is forecast to reach our mission on Thursday, September 21st. We are following the same procedures as with Hurricane Irma. All missionaries have food, water, and other supplies, and will be in safe locations.  We will keep you updated as conditions change.

President Jose M. Santos

 

Domincan Republic Santo Domingo West Mission

 

Estimados padres, obispos y presidentes de estaca,

Ahora estamos preparandonos para el huracán María, que se prevé llegar a nuestra misión el jueves, 21 de septiembre. Estamos siguiendo los mismos procedimientos que con el huracán Irma. Todos los misioneros tienen comida, agua y otros suministros, y estarán en lugares seguros. Los mantendremos actualizado a medida que cambien las condiciones.

 

Presidente Jose M. santos

República Dominicana Santo Domingo Oeste Misión

 

Estimados padres, obispos y presidentes de estaca,

Agora estamos preparandonos para o huracán María, que prevê chegar a nossa missão o jueves, 21 de setembro. Estamos siguiendo os mesmos procedimentos com o huracán Irma. Todos os misioneros têm comida, água e outros fornecimentos e seguros em lugares seguros. Los mantendremos atualizado a medida que cambien as condições.

 

Presidente José M. santos

 

República Dominicana Santo Domingo Oeste Misión

 

Minamahal na mga Magulang, Bishop, at mga Pangulo ng Stake,

 

Nagpaplano na kami ngayon para sa Hurricane Maria na inaasahang maabot ang aming misyon sa Huwebes, Setyembre 21. Sinusunod namin ang parehong mga pamamaraan tulad ng Hurricane Irma. Lahat ng mga misyonero ay may pagkain, tubig, at iba pang mga suplay, at nasa mga ligtas na lugar. Patuloy naming i-update ang mga pagbabago habang nagbabago.

 

Pangulong Jose M. Santos

Republika ng Domincan Santo Domingo West Mission

September 18, 2017 ~ Week 58

Hey Mom! This week was great! Today is week 6 of the transfer, so on Saturday night I'll find out if I'm staying here in El Café or not. This transfer has been so fun with Elder Heaton though, and we've worked really hard together.

Our recent converts are doing well. The Salazar family is pretty good, although a couple of them have missed church a couple of times for various reasons. We´re just trying to help them get into good habits. Some of these things would be hard to change, but they´re doing well!

Haha, I'm pretty jealous of the fact that you guys are experiencing autumn because it's eternally summer here! Sorry I forgot to tell you about being District Leader. It's pretty normal. I just take numbers and do district meetings, so it's pretty easy. And by gas tank last week, I meant our natural gas for our stove. Sadly, only the assistants have a car...

I'm glad to hear that everyone is doing great! I hope that you all have a great week! The only thing that I NEED in the next package is a new journal. Because I'll run out of pages in March I think. But you can just surprise me with everything else. Oh! And chapstick! 
Love you so much!

P.S. I love that picture! 3 of the coolest ladies ever!!!

Monday, September 11, 2017

Hurricane Irma

Hey Mom! This week was pretty interesting with the hurricane and everything. I don't have a whole lot of time, but I´m definitely okay! So that´s good! To be honest, my comp and I were expecting and half-hoping for a lot more rain and excitement than we got, but it's probably for the best! We received instructions to prepare, we bought jugs of water and lots of ramen, and filled up our gas tank. Then on Thursday, we just stayed in the house all day. So, we got some good study time, but most of the day was pretty boring. There really isn´t any damage at all here in the southern part of the country, so that´s good. The locals treated it pretty normally, almost too casually. I think that if it had hit down here, a LOT of people would have died for lack of preparation. It´s very touching to hear about everyone´s thoughts and prayers directed towards those affected. 

The rest of the week was good! Joel and Erick both came to church and I think they both had good experiences there! They are both doing great, and It's fun to be able to teach them! Everything down here is good! I love you all, and I hope you have a great week!
Love, Elder Anderson


P.S. I´ll send you pictures!






Saturday, September 9, 2017

Hurricane Irma - We all are safe

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Dear Parents,

Hurricane Irma has passed us and we are all fine.  The storm went farther north of us than they first predicted.  The result was that we experienced a tropical storm and not the effects of a hurricane.  We are very grateful for all of the prayers on our behalf.  All the missionaries are safe and sound and we are already back to work.

 

Queridos Padres,

Queremos comunicarles que el Huracán Irma ya pasó por la Republica Dominicana y todos nos encontramos bien. La tormenta paso hacia el norte del país como lo habían predicho. Por lo que los únicos efectos que pasaron en nuestra misión fueron lluvias y vientos. Gracias por todas sus oraciones, todos los misioneros se encuentran a salvo y ahora esta cada uno en sus áreas predicando. 



 

Queridos pais,

Queremos informá-lo de que o furacão Irma já passou pela República Dominicana e estamos todos bem. A tempestade se moveu para o norte como eles haviam predito. Portanto, os únicos efeitos que aconteceram em nossa missão foram as chuvas e os ventos. Obrigado por todas as suas orações, todos os missionários estão seguros e agora todos estão em suas áreas de pregação.





Sincerely,

President José M. Santos

Misión Santo Domingo Oeste

República Dominicana

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Missionary Safety: Hurricane Irma

We received this letter from the Mission President on Tuesday, September 5.  We are so grateful for the comfort it has given us through the following few days as we watched and anticipated every move Hurricane Irma made in the Caribbean.
Thank you all for you thoughts and prayers during the last few days.  We are looking forward to hearing from him next Monday!  ~ Paula


Dear Parents,



As many of you are aware, the Caribbean is expecting a hurricane. We are taking all the precautions necessary for the safety of all of your sons and daughters.  Our area is said to not be in the red zone. As of now, we are expecting rain and stormy weather.

We had a meeting with all the mission leaders and have prepared them to execute emergency plans. We provided them with all the tools and information necessary to be prepared should the storm affect their area. We have notified all missionaries that they need to have nonperishable food and water for the duration of 2 weeks minimum. We have informed them that any extra expenses at this time will be reimbursed. Certain sets of missionaries have been relocated to safer areas to avoid the harsher areas of the storm. They will be staying with other missionaries in a more secure area. Leaders are in charge of calling their assigned missionaries every certain period of time. Bishops and Stake presidents are also aware of the situation and will be attentive to the wellbeing of the missionaries serving in their areas.

Please know that we are doing everything in our power to keep our missionaries safe. I will follow up on their safety as soon as the storm passes. We would appreciate your prayers, as usual. Your missionaries will be communicating with you on their normal preparation day.



Sincerely,



President Santos

Santo Domingo West Mission, Dominican Republic



---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



Queridos padres, 



Como muchos de ustedes saben, el Caribe está esperando un huracán. Estamos tomando todas las precauciones necesarias para la seguridad de todos sus hijos e hijas. Se dice que nuestra mision no está en la zona roja. Al momento, estamos esperando la lluvia y tormentas.

Tuvimos una reunión con todos los líderes de la misión y los hemos preparado para ejecutar planes de emergencia. Les proporcionamos todas las herramientas e información necesarias para estar preparados si la tormenta afecta su área. Hemos notificado a todos los misioneros que necesitan tener alimento y agua no perecederos por un mínimo de 2 semanas. Les hemos informado que los gastos adicionales en estos momentos serán reembolsados. Ciertos grupos de misioneros han sido reubicados en áreas más seguras para evitar las áreas en riesgo de la tormenta. Se quedarán con otros misioneros en un área más segura. Los líderes están a cargo de llamar a sus misioneros asignados cada cierto período de tiempo. Los obispos y los presidentes de estaca también estan conscientes de la situación y estarán atentos al bienestar de los misioneros que prestan servicios en sus áreas.

Por favor, sepan que estamos haciendo todo lo posible para mantener a nuestros misioneros a salvo. Daremos seguimiento de su seguridad tan pronto la tormenta pase. Apreciaríamos sus oraciones, como siempre. Sus misioneros se comunicarán con ustedes en su día de preparación normal. 



Atentamente, 

Presidente Santos 

Santo Domingo West Mission, República Dominicana

Monday, September 4, 2017

September 4, 2017

Dear Mom, 

This week was awesome! We had some good lessons, we found some good people, and we had a lot of fun!
We had Zone Conference this week, and I don't know if I already told you guys, but this transfer I'm a district leader, so we got some training about that, and we also started a new Book of Mormon contact challenge, and a challenge to read the BOM as a mission before the end of the year.

This week we also went on splits with the MTC, and I got to leave with a kid from Grantsville! So that was pretty cool! Also, we got a new ward mission leader, and we were able to meet with him, and the rest of the ward council to discuss our needs and I'm very excited about the leadership in our ward!

We also made guacamole this week, one night we couldn't get much sleep because cockroaches kept coming into our room, and another night because the place next to us was blasting music all night! But, what can you do? 

We have two REALLY great investigators right now: Joel and Erick. Joel is super awesome and he goes to an American school, so he speaks perfect English, and his family is great too! They're really receptive, and I feel like they're going to make a lot of progress! Also, Erick is the husband of a member, and he's a super smart guy, and is excited to learn too!

Anyway, hope you all have a great week! Love You!

Love, Elder Anderson



Monday, August 28, 2017

August 28, 2017 ~ Week 55

These past two weeks have been really fun with Elder Heaton, and we've been working really hard! The biggest problem that we have is that we used to have a lot of investigators, but we just baptized the great majority of them, so now our job is to find find find. We did a lot of contacting this week, and found quite a few people. Some of them have a lot more potential than others do, but we'll see!

We have also been focusing a lot on our recent converts because there are a lot of them here. We've been working a lot with ward leaders to make sure that the recent converts have the support that they need. Home and visiting teachers, callings, etc. 

The eclipse sounds like it was pretty amazing! Sadly, we weren't able to see it at all here, but oh well. I'm glad that you guys were able to see it! Sounds like it was quite the adventure with the traffic and everything! 

I hope that everyone is doing well with school starting and everything! Everyone is so old now! Haha, but things are great here! There's not really a whole lot that happens day to day, but everything is good! Also, I've started sleeping in my hammock, so that's fun! Anyway, that's everything for now! Hope you all have a great week!

--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, August 21, 2017

August 21, 2017

Hey Mom! This week was great! So, it turns out that my new companion isn't Elder Hilton. It's Elder Heaton! And that's awesome because he's from my group at the MTC! So we have the same amount of time in the mission, he's from Ogden, Utah, his name is Tanner, and basically we're the same person! I'm also very happy because he's an obedient missionary, and he likes to work hard (unlike some of my past companions) and even though I'd be surprised if we spend more than a transfer together, I know that this will be a really good 6 weeks with him!

This week was pretty normal, we're focusing on finding right now. Don't have a lot of current investigators, but we'll find some! We're teaching one guy who has a really cool house on the beach! I'll send some pictures!

Love you guys! Can't wait to see pictures of the eclipse!

                           



                                                       

                        

Monday, August 14, 2017

Wedding, Baptisms, and Confirmations





This week was absolutely nuts, but I´m glad that we were able to work like crazy this week so that I could give my comp the perfect end to his mission. Working til the end! So, we had some frustrations early on as far as the government, and the whole process of getting people married, and there was also a miscommunication with our ward mission leader, who was going to talk to the ward about getting together the money to help the family get married, but he didn't really communicate that very well, so we got stuck in a hard spot right before, but we were able to gather up enough, with a small contribution from us to be able to get them married!

So on Friday, we drove down, and gave the documents, and paid the money, and they were officially husband and wife, then we got the baptismal registries signed because they were living the law of chasity, and on Saturday we had their baptism. Also a crazy day! In addition, a kid we've been teaching named Anthony got baptized! The baptism was a special experience and the coolest one was Sarah´s. Me and my comp both baptized her, and I said the blessing. It was cool, because we could tell that she was kind of scared, but we carried her down, and my comp held her, and as I started to say the prayer, she just looked at me, and she didn't seem like she was scared at all, she had so much trust. She is such a special soul, and is so happy, and is really just an example to us all. Compared to a lot of people, she seemingly has nothing, but she loves God, and is so innocent, and that's why she's so happy, because she knows what actually matters. When she prays, she prays for others. Those who don't have food, for the missionaries, for our families, even for those who can't walk. And I don't think she's even referring to herself when she says that. She's simply thinking of others.

Then on Sunday, we had the confirmations, and we asked members of the ward to do them. There were some very special blessings that were pronounced and I know that if they continue to live the gospel that those blessings will be realized. They are such a wonderful family and I'm going to do everything that I can to ensure that they continue to be nourished by the word of God, and continue in the path that they've now begun. 

Anyway, it was a great week here in El Café! I'm ready to get my new comp on Tuesday morning! All I know is that his name is something like, but not necesarily Elder Hilton, so we'll see! Haha, I love you all, and I hope that as school starts, that you all do well and enjoy the wonderful thing that is learning! Love you, and have a great week!

--
Love, Elder Anderson





                                                               













Monday, August 7, 2017

August 7, 2017

Hey Mom! My year mark here was great! I burned a shirt, and I´ve been able to contemplate the fact that I've been here for a whole year already. Also, I can now look at my journal and see what I was doing exactly a year ago, so that's pretty cool! Things here are good! We've been working towards the marriage of the Salazar family, and there were some challenges that were presented. Principally the lack of organization in government here, but we've finally gotten the birth certificates and everything is going to work out. We had baptismal interviews for them, and right when we went onto their street, someone started blasting super loud music. Like, SUPER loud. So we ended up having to call a member and asked if we could have the interviews over there. But! "Every problem has a solution, and every solution takes time." So we've been doing a lot of problem solving here. Now we just have to get that wheelchair for Sarah. Our other investigators are doing okay, but this week we're going to focus on finding, and looking for references so that we can build up our pool of progressing investigators.

So, I've got about a week and a half left with my current comp, and then he'll be headed home. It's cool to be here in the capital because I get to see President Santos more. Not a lot, but more. 

Thanks for the email! I love you guys, and I hope you all have a great week!




--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, July 31, 2017

One Year!

Hey Mom! I can't believe either that it's been a whole year already since I left! Absolutely crazy, but I guess time flies when you're having fun, right?  
I like the questions that you asked me, and here are my answers:


Q: What eternal truth do you know now, that you wished you had known or known better before you left on your mission?
A: I would honestly just say a love for the gospel. The fact that living the gospel brings us lasting happiness and peace. Before the mission I liked the gospel, and I enjoyed church, but I didn't see the absolute NECESSITY for it in my life like I do now.

Q: What do you feel is your greatest strength as a missionary?
A: Probably my ability to accept, love, and serve others. Companions, other missionaries, members, investigators, this is something I've had to develop, but I feel as though it's a strength now

Q: Complete this sentence (it can be as long or as short as you want): "I didn't expect my mission to be 
A: I didn't expect my mission to be anything like it is. I guess I really didn't know what to expect, but any expectation I had before wasn't very accurate. I don't really know how to explain this, but my mission has been way easier, and yet, way more difficult than I thought it would be. I am grateful for the unexpected though, because that's been what's forced me to grow.

Q: What have you learned about people through teaching and serving them every day?
A: I love this quote that President Hinckley once shared: "I used to complain that I didn't have shoes, until I saw someone who didn't have feet" 
Both Spiritually and Temporally speaking, I have been blessed with shoes in my life. I have a father who loves his children, honors his priesthood, and provides us with our needs and our wants. I have a Mother who loves and teaches us, constantly serves us, and is a wonderful example in word and deed. I have brothers and sisters whom I love, they love me, and each one is a wonderful blessing in my life. I have extended family as well (grandparents, aunts, uncles, cousins) who are also great blessings to me. I was born in the United States, a promised land with incredible liberty and financial opportunity. I was raised in the only true and living church. I was blessed with friends who are great examples to me and share the same values. I have so much, and seeing people with so little has made me so sad at times, but I know that I can offer them the best thing that will improve their life. I've also learned what truly matters, and what offers true happiness.

Q: How has your testimony changed from the one you shared at your farewell a year ago?
A: When a testimony is put to the test, it either shrinks or grows. Mine has increased DRAMATICALLY. President Boyd K. Packer said that a testimony is found in the bearing of it. I have had the opportunity to bear it a lot, and I feel a stronger conviction every time. As the result of a lot of prayer, study, meditation, and earnest seeking.

I want you all to know that I love you, and miss you all. I hope this year goes fast, but I hope that I enjoy every moment that I have to share the gospel with others here. I am so grateful for each day that I've had as a missionary and for every person I've met here, and every experience I've had both the good and the bad. I know this work is real and that it is blessed by the hand of the Lord.

P.s. We had two baptisms the other day. Brayan, and Johao Aragonès!
I'll send pictures next week if I can. 

I love you all, and hope you have a great week!


--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, July 24, 2017

¡Feliz día de los pioneros!

Happy Pioneer day everyone! I hope that you guys have had a great day so far! I always loved the fact that we have two family holidays in July in Utah. Independence and Pioneer Day. So I hope you all have a lot of fun! 

This week was really good! We had lots of good lessons, and found some really good investigators 
this week! We were also able to do splits with the MTC again this week, and we ran into someone from Utah! Yeah, I didn't believe him until he told us he was from Taylorsville! Haha, that was crazy! He bought us lunch and we talked for a while. Really cool guy! Also, I went on intercambios with my Zone Leader, Elder Pinto. It was really good to go with him, and I learned a lot. 

The Salazar family is doing well. This week we're going to a government place with them to put a date for their wedding, so that's exciting! We're also trying to get a new wheelchair for Sara, so I'll let you know how that goes. 

This week we are going to have 2 baptisms! Brayan (Bryan) and Johaun (Joan). They are the stepsons of a member of our ward, and we're really excited for their baptism! Other than that, it's the same old same old around here. I love being a missionary, and I am happy with all of the success that we're seeing here. 

Love you all! Have a great week!
--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, July 17, 2017

Week 49

This week was a good one! We had Zone Conference with President Santos, and it was really good! President Santos is a great man, and you can feel his love for you when he's speaking. 

The highlight of this week was leaving with the MTC on splits! It seems like not that long ago that I left on splits when I was in the MTC and I didn't know any spanish. So it was very cool to be able to
experience that from the other side of things now. Oh, how far I've come. I now consider myself to be practically fluent. Obviously, there are words here and there that I don't know, but there are english words like that too! As far as grammar goes, I think I've pretty much got it down! It was fun though! I left with an Elder Jensen, and he was a cool guy. I hope to be able to train soon, because I think it would especially be fun to have someone with that "greenie fire" and all the excitement that comes with being a new missionary (personally, I don't think I've lost my greenie fire, and I plan on having it until the end) 

As far as the teaching goes, things are good, we're helping the father of the Salazar family to quit drinking, and we're helping to take care of papers and stuff to get them married. Also, we're trying to obtain a new wheelchair through the church charities for the little girl in the family. Things are good! Some people came to church this week, others didn't, but we'll keep trying!

I love you all, and I hope that you all have the best week ever!
--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, July 10, 2017

¡Feliz 4 de Julio!

Happy Fourth of July! I hope that everyone made up for the fact that for the first time in 19 years, Tanner Anderson wasn't even there to celebrate the independence of his own country. But I celebrated here. In my bed. Cause I was sick. I don't know what happened but I felt like I needed to throw up, and had a fever all day, but the next day, I was mostly better until the night when I almost threw up again. But now I've recuperated all the way!

This week we had something we call a "Cosecha" (harvest) in our zone leader's area. Basically, after District meeting, we went over there, and gathered with the members, and went on splits to go find new investigators. It was good! I went with this kid named Arturo, and I called him "Arturo el duro" which is like, Arturo the strong, haha, I thought it was pretty clever! So, we went out, and started looking for people to contact, and we just went from house to house. For a bit, we just kept getting rejected over, and over, and over, until we found a guy who would listen, and we gave him the whole rundown on the restoration. I'll tell you, I completely agree with Elder Boyd K. Packer when he said "Oh, if I could teach you this one principle. A testimony is to be found in the bearing of it!" Every time I testify of the fact that Joseph Smith really saw the father and the son, and that we have a living prophet today, I feel my testimony of that reality grow stronger. That is one of my favorite parts of teaching, is the opportunity to testify of truth. 

So the cosecha went well, and we had a couple of good lessons! Then for the rest of the week, we continued to work with the investigators that we have. I don't know if I told you guys, but we ended up having to drop Mercedes and Carina. They looked up some anti-mormon stuff, and there are very simple and clear explanations to some of the doubts they expressed, but unless they "Doubt not, but be believing" (Mormon 9:27) they will never come unto a knowledge of the truth. Our other investigators and recent converts are doing well though! Basically the approach we've taken with recent converts is to go and read the Book of Mormon with them. Because the culture here, isn't very conducive to literacy, and doesn't encourage a love for reading, so we want to change that culture at least within the church, and with the Book of Mormon. Also, it's good to help them interpret some things that seem simple to those of us who have grown up in a scripture reading environment. Like Lehi's dream, or all of the Isaiah verses, and to give explanations of who are the twelve tribes, and why sometimes in the scriptures Gentiles is a bad thing, but sometimes it's simply a declaration of nationality. 

Also, this week I was tired of having hair, so I decided to buzz my head. Lol. I look like an egg. Maybe that will help me to not get cat called so much though! Haha, I'll send pictures!


Elder Anderson with Hair


Elder Anderson without hair

Anyway, that was my week! For the month of July, I started reading one chapter from proverbs a day, because there are 31 chapters, and I probably wouldn't ever read them in order otherwise, but I really like some of them! One I really liked was in Proverbs 1

32 For the turning away of the simple shall slay them, and the prosperity of fools shall destroy them.

33 But whoso hearkeneth unto me shall dwell safely, and shall be quiet from fear of evil.

I like that it says that the prosperity of fools shall destroy them. Sometimes Satan allows people to live without difficulty so that they never humble themselves and come to God. The people in the great and spacious building sound like they must have been pretty wealthy, but if we are humble in whatever circumstance, in times of famine, and in times of plenty, we will "dwell in safety, and be quiet from fear of evil". 

I love you all, and I hope you have the best week ever!​
-- 
Love, Elder Anderson


Salazar family



Grandkids of some recent converts




Ocean on p-day



Ocean on p-day



Street art



Street art




Monday, July 3, 2017

11 Months and Lots of Changes




Hey all! This week was great! Michelle was baptized by our bishop on Saturday, so that was awesome! We´re still trying to teach her mom, so that´s a work in progress.



Also, President Nuckols left this week, and now we have a new President: President Santos. We had a meeting with him the other day, and I'm very excited to have him as our new mission president. He´s going to do some great things here in this mission. 

This week went well! We put 7 baptismal dates this week, and we ended up finding a few news too! Also, our ward split this week on Sunday! It was pretty unexpected, and now we have church at 8:00 on sundays, so that´ll be another challenge as far as getting investigators to church on time, but I guess it´ll help to seperate the prepared from the unprepared. 

As my thought for the week, I want to share something that I learned about fasting the other day. I was reading in Doctrine and Covenants 59:
13 And on this day thou shalt do none other thing, only let thy food be prepared with singleness of heart that thy fasting may be perfect, or, in other words, that thy joy may be full.

14 Verily, this is fasting and prayer, or in other words, rejoicing and prayer.

What I thought was that it´s interesting that it compares the words fasting, and joy, and rejoicing. So basically, they should be the same thing. Or that when we´re living the gospel, we should be happy! And that's all there is to it!
Love you all, have a good week!
--
Love, Elder Anderson




Monday, June 26, 2017

We Talk of Christ

My companion is feeling better now, so that's good news! We got out this week, and were able to work hard to make up for the time that we missed. 

This week, we got a call from the second counselor in the Relief Society Presidency, and she was wondering if we could come and give the lessons to her granddaughter. So we went to start the lessons, and she was the most prepared person I have ever taught! Her name is Michelle, and her Grandma is the only member of her family, but she's been coming to church since she was 5 years olds, and she just turned 8 last month. So we had the first lesson, and it wasn't even really a lesson. It was literally us asking questions and her giving really great answers! It was awesome, and she's super smart! We put a baptismal date for July 1st with her, and our goal is to end up teaching her mom. 

Teaching her, along with all of my experiences here, has made me really grateful for the blessing of growing up in the church. It really is an incredible thing to be taught the gospel of Jesus Christ from a young age. It reminds me of a scripture that we memorized as a family.
 2 Nephi 25:26 
And we talk of Christ, we rejoice in Christ, we preach of Christ, we prophesy of Christ, and we write according to our prophecies, that our children may know to what source they may look for a remission of their sins.

It's so important to teach children about this stuff. It can change and shape lives. The gospel is so good! 

Anyway, that was my week. We're probably going to have to drop Mercedes and Carina. They aren't progressing, and they won't read in the Book of Mormon, even though we've left that invitation for them like 3 times in a row. 

Hope you are all doing great! I love you all so much, and I hope you have a great week!



--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, June 19, 2017

Una Semana Aburrida

It was so great to see the pictures of the baptism! Those pictures absolutely melted my heart! Tell Sophia that I am so proud of and so happy for her! Also, thanks for the dabbing picture! Haha, I'm so glad that everything worked out as far as the river level and the weather!

Well, as far as my week goes, it was actually pretty boring. My comp got sick halfway through the week. So my days consisted of reading, and cleaning the house and stuff. I honestly think that that is one of my callings in the mission. Cleaning the mission houses. They end up getting so dirty, and somebody has to clean them. So that's what I do.

Anyway. Sorry for such a short, boring letter. My comp is getting better now, so I'll definitely have more to write about next week! I hope that you all have an incredible week. I love you all so much!

--
Love, Elder Anderson

Monday, June 12, 2017

Just Can't Quit Coffee

Hey Mom! This week had its ups and its downs. I'll start with the main down:

We have two investigators: Mercedes and Carina. Mercedes is in her 60s and Carina is her daughter and is in her 30s. Now, they've both been progressing pretty well recently. They've been coming to church, they've started to read the book of mormon. We went through the first 3 lessons with them just fine, and they both said that they belive it's true. Then we got to the Word of Wisdom. Now, they knew about it beforehand, because they were introduced to the church by a member friend, but when we got to the part about coffee. Mercedes basically told us that she wouldn't give it up. We were kind of surprised by her adamancy in not quitting. She told us that she simply didn't think it was necessary to quit. We asked her if she believed in the book of mormon and Joseph Smith. She said yes, but didn't think coffee is wrong. We asked her if she thought coffee is bad for her. She said yes, but doesn't want to quit. In the end, I think that it just comes down to her desire to do it. She believes it's true, but just doesn't want to act on it. Please keep Mercedes in your prayers. We'll keep trying with her.

One of the highlights of the week was last Monday. We had a family home evening with the Salazar family, and it went really well! It was a great experience for all, and there was a part where we talked about family prayer, and President Nuckols was talking, and turned to me and said: "Elder Anderson, did your family have any traditions for family prayer?" Well, I immediately thought of the prayer bell. I told them that we had that bell, and every night, I'd here it ring so that we could gather and pray, and that everytime I hear a loud bell, I think of praying with the family. It was a good memory to remember :)

The rest of the week went well! We had lots of good experiences, and I'm so glad to be here in El Café. Even if someone just won't quit their café. I love you all, and I hope you have the best week ever!



--
Con Amor, Elder Anderson

Monday, June 5, 2017

El Café - Semana Dos

Hey Mom! This week was a great one! Let me tell you why: We started off the week by getting our apoyo (Our money) and going to a grocery store called bravo.  And let me tell you, that place is a paradise. I'm talking about a clean, organized, store. With space to walk! It was incredible! And things were a LOT less expensive there too.

As far as the work, things are going great! We are still teaching the Salazar family, and they're progressing really well. In fact, tonight we have a family home evening with them in President Nuckol's house. So that'll be good! We also have 2 investigators: Carina, and her mom Mercedes that are progressing well. They have a baptismal date for the 1st of July! Then we have this guy named Benjamin that we are teaching. He's a great guy, but he has a wife who lives in the US that doesn't want him to get baptized. So we're working with him and trying to figure out the best way to help him in his situation. 

We also found A LOT of new investigators this week! My comp and I set a goal to get 12 news, and we ended up getting 15! We met one family who one of the ladies says that she was baptized into the church a long time ago. We'll have to see if that's true though, because right after saying that she asked if we believed in the new testament, and if there were any differences between mormons and catholics... haha, we also got a reference from a 14 year old member. We went to talk with his friend and we ended up teaching the friend's sister, him, and his 2 other friends too. They all seemed really interested, and they all had really good questions, so we'll see what happens with them! 

Today for Pday, we went to an underground cave with a pool of water. It was pretty sweet. I'll send pictures. 

As a spiritual thought for the week. I want to share one of the scriptures I've recently memorized in spanish. I find that it helps a lot to be able to say scriptures in spanish from memory, because I've known a lot of them in English, but if you try to translate in your head, it doesn't work out exactly like you want it to. But the scripture is in Mathew 11:28-30

28 ¶ Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.

30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.

I find it really interesting that we aren't giving our yoke to Christ, and saying: "Okay, thanks for taking that for me. Appreciate it. See ya later!" What we are doing is taking on Christ's yoke. He's not doing all of the work, because he can't force us to keep the commandments. He can't force us to use the atonement. He can't force us to repent. He's helping us to be able to push, to be able to work. But we have the promise that if we let him, if we decide to push alongside him. It will be easy. It will be light. Not because it isn't a hard load to carry, but because we have the strongest pusher helping us along. 

I know that that is true. I know that God loves us. I know that we can make it. We just have to live the gospel and let Christ lead us. That's all there is to it. I know the church is true, and I know that this work is important. I love you all, and I hope that you have the best week ever!

Monday, May 29, 2017

El Café- Semana Uno

My first week in my 3rd area went really well! My companion is Elder Larkin from Las Vegas and he's a super good guy, and I have the honor of being his last companion in the mission before he goes home in August. The area is VERY different from Neyba. There are so many people crammed into a very small space and you'll see what I mean from the picture I'll send. Also, I'm REALLY close to the ocean. Which means that I have a sweet view from the roof of my apartment AND it's super humid! It's like, pretty uncomfortably humid all the time, which is tough, but whatever, there are worse things. haha

We have a few really good investigators here in our area. We are teaching this absolutely AWESOME family. The Salazar family. They have 5 kids, but there are also a few uncles and people that we always teach when we're sharing with them. I taught the family my first night here, and I just fell in love with this family. They're pretty poor, but they're just so happy, and so kind. They have a little 7 year old who is super cute, and they have another little girl in a wheelchair who is so polite, and always smiling. I am so excited to teach this family, and to see them progress and be baptized.

Also! It is so strange to be in a ward again after attending small branches for 10 months. It is a nice change though to be in a place where there's a bishopric, teachers that teach. Elders quorums that home teach. I don't know, it's kind of a relief! Also, the bishop and his family are so great. They have the missionaries come to their house every sunday and have a feast! We had chicken wings, roast beef, potatoes, pasta, salad. I felt like I was back home! And they do it EVERY SUNDAY! Oh, and the bishop's daughter-in-law asked me where I was from, and I said "Utah" and she said "what part?" and I was surprised because usually people don't ask that here, but I said "It's west of Salt Lake, it's called Tooele County" And she said in perfect English: "Oh, I served there! In West Valley!" Haha, it was so weird to hear that! And her husband said he had a mission companion from Stansbury Park. Rob Christensen or something. Pretty cool! 

Anyway, I think I'll really like this area. It's different, but it's good. I'll let you guys know how my second week goes here! I love you all, and I hope you guys have a great start to your summer!
--
Love, Elder Anderson






Monday, May 22, 2017

Transfers...



Hey Mom! So, to answer your questions... I'm leaving Neyba! We got calls on Saturday night, and I'm actually the only one from my district leaving. I'm finally going to the capital though! I'm going to an area called "El Café" (kind of ironic because I'm a missionary serving in an area named the coffee) Haha, but I'm leaving tomorrow morning to go meet my new comp: Elder Larkin. He's from Las Vegas, so I'm sure it'll be fun! It'll be a little sad leaving Neyba, but I'm excited for a new adventure, and I'm also excited for big grocery stores and maybe fast food!

As far as this week goes, it went pretty well! I had 4 two hour long gua gua rides for Zone Conference, and for District Conference on Sunday. I'm really excited for my gua gua ride to the capital to be the last one I'll have for a while. Other than that, I just kept preparing the investigators that we have for baptism, we now have 10 baptismal dates, and although it would be nice to be able to witness the more of the fruits of my labors while I'm here, I'm ready to go plant some more seeds in my next area.

Anyway, that's honestly about it! It was so nice to be able to talk to you guys on Sunday. I'll admit that I was pretty trunky on Monday, and also on Tuesday, but that's to be exprcted! I got right back to work after that though. I'm so happy for Jarrett and Nikki, and I was way more happy on Tuesday because my bro was getting married than I was sad because I wasn't there. 

Well! That's about it for this week! I'll let you guys know next week how my next area and my comp are. See ya!

--
Love, Elder Anderson

P.S. The photos are of me and some investigators, and also, the one peso coins I've been saving up for my entire mission. I tried to spend them today, and they're worth so little that nobody wants them. I finally convinced some dude to sell me a gatorade for them. Haha, it's funny how worthless they are. The majority of the time, they don't even give one peso coins as change, they'll just give you a little candy or a mint or something instead...


















Monday, May 15, 2017

Mother's Day 2017

Mom!!! I don't really know how, but I'm pretty sure that during all of the excitement yesterday, I neglected to tell you happy mother's day. So... HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!!! I hope your day was incredible and that you were told a million times how great of a mother you are, and that you never forget that fact. You are the best mom in the world! :) 

It was absolutely incredible to talk with you guys yesterday, and it's crazy to think that the next time I talk to you guys, it'll be Christmas again! Really crazy stuff! I know that I've said this a lot, but I really am so grateful to have such an amazing family full of people who love me, support me, and help me through everything. Haha, like I told mom yesterday though: "It sucks so bad that I have such an awesome family!" Because I miss you guys so much! 

This week was a good one, we have a lot of people that are progressing really well, which is really great, but also too bad, that we're having so much success right now that I'm just about to leave Neyba. I just pray that a really good missionary comes to Neyba to replace me. Someone's gotta come and help Givelord, Millord, Lionny, Yinairy, Mariely, Jeisy, and all of my converts here!

On Saturday, Selenni got baptized. It was a really good service and it was cool to watch her take that step in her life. She's got a lot of friends now who are really interested in the church, so that'll be great if she can help them out and have a whole group of good strong youth in the branch here.

I'll let you guys know next week where I'm headed next! I'm excited to go, but I think I'm also going to miss Neyba. There are some really great people here. I hope that I've made an impact here, and that I've had an influence in helping to bring people closer to Jesus Christ. 

I love you all. I hope you have a great week!

--
Love, Elder Anderson
Ps. Thanks for the pictures! The first one is the jugs of water we have, and this week I made a goal to drink an entire jug straight from the jug.
The other one is a picture of some crazy little girls that I met in Duvergé at a member's house
The last one is a picture of my comp with the branch budget, haha






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Our most recent family picture:  Mother's Day 2017