Sunday, May 18, 2014

Week 43: Change it Up

Well, my cyst has finally started disappearing. 
I wish I could say the same thing for the rest of my problems.
This week has just been a big onslaught of trials of faith, and they all just sort of hit me like a wall. The majority of said tribulations came from the great headache of a meeting that is the Changes. I’m not sure if I’ve explained it before but I think I’ll explain it again
What are the Changes? Basically what happens is that on Sunday night, the Assistants tell all the zone leaders what missionaries in their zones have transfers, they in turn call the district leaders who call each individual missionary. The following Tuesday, a taxi appears at the doorstep of their house to take them to the meeting.
The reunion is held in the Chapel in Montufar (my ward), which was the very first building constructed by the church in the country of Guatemala. Even though it has since been remodeled, it still holds a sense of sacredness.
The new missionaries come first, and receive a few instructions from the Mission President and his wife, and also the Secretaries (hi). Then at 10:00 all of the missionaries proceed into the meeting, where all the Elders who have changes are seated with their respective zones.
A hymn is sung, a prayer is said and the “Honorable” missionaries who are finishing their missions come to the pulpit and bear their testimonies.
The Mission President and his wife then give their prepared talks and we close with a hymn.
A projector is then turned on and a slide show demonstrates each individual change that has been made to the missionary roster: for example “In Progreso, Elder Layton receives a new zone leader… “Elder Bento.” That’s how it works. Then the new companionship stands and leaves together to go to their area.
Pretty sweet right?
The truth is that it really is. The meeting is spiritual and stressful…like a good game of Scripture Chase.
The only down side is that on the other side of the curtain…a lot of work goes into it. Especially on our part as secretaries. There was so much to do this week I almost died.
Sunday: A nice, “calm before the storm” kind of day. I got to talk to my family on Skype for mothers day. It was a fantastic opportunity, and I loved the whole thing in spite of a few technical difficulties. I have such a great family!
Monday: Today started the whole fiasco that was the preparation for the Change Meeting. We had to stay in the offices until 8:00 because there was so much to do! But for the one hour that we had to work I got to go on a division with Elder Tauiliili, who would be finishing his mission this Thursday. I learned a lot from him about Christlike Attributes. He was incredibly kind and understanding, and completely selfless, really, just a great example.
Tuesday: TRANSFER MEETING! I didn´t have transfers and neither does my companion (he´s been here for 30 weeks! Holy Cow!), but there was so much to do. The day before we had ordered all the taxis for the missionaries who would need to go to the meeting but by some tragic turn of events, we had all the addresses and phone numbers wrong on the computers.
So pretty much half of the missionaries came late.
I got to give a quick money training to the greenies and then go run to the other side of the church to pay for all the transportation.
There was a lot to do.
There’s a new Executive Secretary in the offices: Elder Walton, from Utah (he went to Lone Peak…I’m not entirely sure how I feel about that).
There were lots to do and we were running behind in the offices until 8:00 again.
Wednesday: Another fun thing about the change meeting is that the Missionaries who are finishing off their 2 years get to stay over in our house for two days. It was pretty sweet, I was able to talk with all the “Muertos” (or Dead). Two of my Zone Leaders, Elder Cerrato (from Honduras) and Elder Guaman (from Ecuador) went home.
So that was fun.
The only bad part about Wednesday was that all of our very best investigators flaked out on us. Baltazar and Floridalma are now on the fence about baptism.
We’ll see what we can do to help them.
Thursday: The best part about the Changes was that one of my best friends from my group and my district in San Juan got sent to my district here!
I got to go on divisions with Elder Huntsman!
It was a great day, we talked a lot about the mission and found a new investigator…(because we desperately need new investigators).
So it was a pretty good day.
Friday: In the morning, Elder Huntsman and I ordered Burger King for breakfast. (A note: one of the best things about fast food in Guatemala is that EVERYONE does delivery…not just Pizza! If you want McDonalds without even leaving your house…just pick up the phone! Except, Taco Bell doesn´t provide this service…that makes me sad). After working a little bit in the offices, Elder Gil and I went out to work. We had an awesome lesson with Floridalma again, our ward mission leader came with us to help us teach and the spirit was so strong!
…and looking on retrospect, sure I had a lot of problems this last week…but there were also a lot of blessings that I saw.

Woo Hoo! Church is True!

Feliz cupleanos Elder Rosero

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