June 1, 2015

It was another pretty decent week here in Chalchuapa. I really like it in this area and am loving my time here! Last week we had a multizone, I think it was my last one, but it was pretty good! I was super stoked because my package from the Anderson’s finally arrived after 2 months of being in the mail. I ended up opening it up in the house of Elder Baker.  Cant be a coincidence!  haha!!!  Thanks a lot! As for the multizone, haha the missionary doctor for Central America came to talk to us about the dangers of Chicangunya and Dengue but joked around pretty much the entire time, but it was pretty good. Now that the rain season is growing close it’s going to get pretty sketchy again and everyone will be scared of and exaggerate mosquito bites just like the past couple rain seasons, cant wait. Haha I will never forget about my trainer who had dengue while I began my training. I still think that the hardest couple weeks of my mission were my first 2 in the mission field because i couldn’t even leave to work. I felt so useless and everything being in the house all day for 13 days. I think the worst part was not being able to write my first week in El Salvador.

In the multi zone we did a few practices on how to do an effective contact in the street. The practice was that we’d have 2 minutes to get a lesson with an investigator that had a doubt. Like not believing in Joseph Smith, being a Jehovah’s witness, not understanding what the differences between all the churches was, etc. It’s not something we generally want to do, and I’ve gotten to the point where I’m really picky with investigators. Before i wanted to teach a ton of lessons and preach the gospel like i thought missionaries were supposed to do, but now i know i am here to baptize and retain and nothing else. But between the two zones present, i ended up coming in second place to elder brown! It was crazy because we went to a tie breaker and did the practice with mics in front of everyone haha. I was pretty nervous at first, but not too bad. But yeah, i lost.

After the multizone I went to the assistant’s area again on interchanges, once more with Elder Baker! We had a ton of fun even though we only were able to work for like 3 hours. The night ended by eating teriyaki wings from Buffalo Wings, which is actually a legit wing gig in El Salvador. I didn’t know they existed. We taught a lesson 2 houses down from a Black Magic church that looked really creepy! It was literally a real Black Magic church, I didn’t even know they existed. Apparently a missionary took a picture of it a few months ago but his camera broke and he had bad dreams for a few weeks after, so kinda crazy.

We’ve got a ton of potential for this change. We already baptized little Denis on the 12th of May and were able to have a really good baptismal service with Fernando yesterday. I was able to perform the ordinance and everything went smoothly. We have been teaching the sister of a new convert named Tania who is pretty cool. She’s like 19 and finally went to church yesterday and is preparing to be baptized on the 20th of June. As for now we have 4 baptisms lined up for the weekend of the 20th and have a potential to finish this change with 6 baptisms at least. We still have Edgar who will be getting married on the 20th and baptizing on the 21th with his deaf daughter, Fatima. I love that family! It’s been really cool because we were able to reactive the future wife of Edgar, but the best part has been to see how happy their son Raul has been. He is 17 and preparing to serve a mission and has always been active and is really happy to see everything coming together so well for his family. Again, that’s the best part of the mission. Watching people become happy. Not the kind of happy like after sinking your teeth into a glazed donuts from Krispy Kreme or a 64’yard touchdown pass, it’s something greater… which is sometimes hard to believe because donuts and touchdowns are great.

We also passed by the house of less actives 2 Saturdays ago, and as a result, they have been to church the past 2 Sundays and are even bringing family members to church now. One teenage girl named Rosa yesterday accepted to be baptized on June 20. She loves Young Women’s and went to church for a while last year but was never baptized with her cousins. Where they will be sealed in September. We{re pretty stoked we were able to set a baptism date with her this week because we weren’t planning on it originally. (Grammar correction for my dad.)

This week I think I’ll be finishing Jesus the Christ… finally. I started it last year and have been reading it off and on but when I finally got to the part of the Atonement I read a lot. I’ve read around 200 pages in 3 weeks after having read 500 pages in a year haha. I feel like that’s the biggest thing I’ve been able to learn so far, is about the Atonement. It’s a crazy topic because it’s so complicated and there’s a lot of things we’ll never really understand. Even as a life long member, it’s really not anything I took too much time to think about or study before I came out here. I accepted it because of the numbers of time i had heard about it, but that’s where my learning ended. I love seeing it work in the lives of the people i teach! I wish it was something I could’ve learned about earlier, I just didn’t understand.

I think that’s about it for now! I still have all, yes, all my BYU stuff boxed up until next change so I don’t get made fun of by my comps – still in a trio. I’m still eating what are probably too many pupusas and still get overwhelmingly amazed every time I see a huge frog in the street. I still have the same habit of wanting to buy jerseys and am even trying to snag a couple of RSL jerseys even though I still think soccer is a disorganized race with a soccer ball. And I’m still working in the rain without an umbrella or jacket. Pretty much the only thing new I picked up last week was to look carefully in the street because there are cool black rocks made by lightning I can collect and possibly one day put to good use… in ways i don’t know yet.

Elder Nate Slack

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