Monday, May 25, 2015

Rain Rain Rain

Familia y amigos,

What is going on?  How is everyone?  This week was a pretty good week here in Bluefields.  We had a lot of success and are seeing lots of miracles here, so I’m going to let you guys know what’s happening!

So as you can see in the title of my email it has been raining a ton here.  It just pours.  There are usually like 2 or 3 days of rain in a row and then a day of sun.  It was nice because yesterday we had a day of sun, so there weren’t a ton of excuses for people to not come to church and such.  But when it does rain, it dumps.  Here in Bluefields the average rainfall annually is in between 160 and 180 inches, compared with Utah, which is like 19 inches or so.  So it’s a ton, but we’re surviving.  I have bought an umbrella that I am using but it makes me feel like a testigo, whatever!  The umbrella works great and protects the upper part of my body but I’m not going to be able to avoid getting my pants and shoes all wet. 

One of the Zone leaders, Elder Henriquez, and his companion also came this week here to Bluefields.  We have been working super hard to get our investigators prepared for baptism this Saturday, so he came and did a couple baptismal interviews.  We have 4 possible baptisms for this Saturday and 3 of them were ready for the interview and they all passed.  It was definitely a blessing and the investigators with the Word of Wisdom problems have been doing really well.  Thanks for all of the prayers and everything, keep them coming!

On Saturday Elder Passey woke up kind of sick.  It was his first sickness in the mission because he is kind of new so that was a little hard for him.  We had to get out and work to commit everyone to come to church, so I just kind of had to drag him around all day.  I felt bad but it was something we had to do.  Even though he didn’t feel well, we had a pretty successful day so we were happy.

On Sunday we were even more blessed.  Elder Passey was still just a little sick, but we had a crazy morning of bringing investigators to church.  We ended up getting 13 people to come with us.  And we had 2 complete families there so we were super happy.  Right now June is looking like it is going to be the month of families for us, and we have been seeing a lot of miracles.  We are just working hard to keep finding investigators to replace the 4 that we will be losing this week.

Other than that nothing really has been going on.  I hope everyone is enjoying the end of the school year and everyone has a fun start of the summer.  I love you all and hope you all have a great week!  I have a couple of photos here, so enjoy.


Elder Hanson

Elder Solares and Me
Elder Henriquez, Elder Soifua, Elder Passey, Our
Investigator, Me, Elder Solares and Elder Hernandez

Elder Henriquez, Me, Our Investigator, and Elder Passey

Me by the Bay
Elder Passey and Me

Monday, May 18, 2015

Bluefields change 4, rainy season is starting

Familia y amigos,

How is everyone doing?  Things are going well here, and as you can see from the title I’m still out here in Bluefields.  It will be my 4th change here, so at the end of this change I’ll have like 6 months in total in the area!  My companion is still Elder Passey, so we will be continuing to work hard and try to get as many people to the waters of baptism here in these next 6 weeks.

First of all I wanted to give another quick B day shoutout to Owen, Riley, and Maddy!  I hope all of you guys had great birthdays, and I especially hope Owen is feeling older like he thought would happen.

Not much really happened this week, it was kind of a slow one.  On Tuesday we luckily got the changes call a little early.  They called us at 10:30am instead of 1 pm.  They told us that just Elder Rodriguez would be having changes so we sent him off in the panga at 3.  We just got to work after that.  On Tuesday one of our investigators with word of wisdom problems relapsed so that was a little hard.  We set a new baptism goal date for the 30th for her.

On Wednesday it was just another day of hard work.  This week was the “week of family” here in Central America, that was put on by the area presidency.  Every night there was an activity in the church.  It was kind of sad because each of the members was supposed to find a family or a friend to bring to the activities.  Nobody really showed up which was sad.

On Thursday the new Elder came, his name is Elder Hernandez from Guatemala.  It isn’t my trainer Elder Herndandez, but he seems like a cool guy.  Him and Elder Soifua started working hard so we will see what ends up happening there.  On Thursday our other investigator with word of wisdom problems relapsed, so he got moved to the 30th too.  We are changing up a couple things to verify better and we are working hard with them, please keep them in your prayers.

Nothing went down on Friday, and on Saturday the other Elders had a baptism.  Bluefields has been really short on water so we couldn’t fill up the pila (font).  It was like 12 inches high, and we had no idea what to do.  So we just decided to baptize the person in what we had.  He had to have him sit down, the person baptizing was on his knees, and then we just laid him flat.  He went completely under so it all worked out.  They also had a cool cultural night here, where people did some acts, danced and stuff.  Nobody showed up which was sad again but we had some investigators come.

On Sunday the rain started (marking the beginning of the wet season in Nicaragua), which is going to make the work here a little harder, but I know the Lord will bless us.

I didn’t have my camera really with me this week, and I was dumb and forgot it for the cultural night.  Another Elder has photos that I’ll send next week.  I love you all, and I hope you all have a great week!  Everyone go and read Mosiah 7:33, its a good one!

Mosiah 7:33 “But if ye will turn to the Lord with full purpose of heart, and put your trust in him, and serve him with all diligence of mind, if ye do this, he will, according to his own will and pleasure, deliver you out of bondage.”


Elder Hanson

Monday, May 11, 2015

Happy Mother's Day, Cambios This Week

Familia y amigos,

I hope all the mothers enjoyed Mother’s Day yesterday, it was great getting to talk to the family!  Everyone is getting so big.  I hope that everyone had a great week this week, mine went well.  We were blessed to have a baptism that went alright, and we were just working with the investigators that we have.

Anyway this week we were just securing a baptism that we had planned.  We had to make sure he wasn’t drinking coffee, and his family is super poor so we had to give them some pinolillo (substitute for coffee, ie postum) so that he had something else to drink.  He is the son of this super cool menos activo (less active) that Elder Roney and I found, but we didn’t know that the guy had a son.  He was super stoked for baptism, so we taught him and it went well.  On Saturday we showed up for his baptism and he wasn’t home.  We had everything planned out, and of course no baptism can go smooth, Satan always has to throw in an obstacle.  He was playing Nintendo at some house where you can pay to play, so we got him, took him to the baptism, and then confirmed him on Sunday.

The other investigators we have are doing well.  The majority of them right now are having problems with the Word of Wisdom.  It isn’t like a coffee problem which is easier to get over, it is alcohol and tobacco.  If you could all please keep my investigators in your prayers that would be awesome.  If all goes well with them we will finish with a very successful month.

This week is cambios (changes), so we will see what happens here in Bluefields.  I don’t really think that I will be having changes, as my 6 month sentence isn’t up yet.  We should be getting a new Elder or Elders here, so I will let you all know what happens next week.  As usual, if you see the McDonalds charge on the card, you know I had changes.

I hope that everyone has a great week, you are all always in my prayers.  I wanted to share a scripture that I found this week that I really liked.  It is in Doctrine and Covenants 100:15, which says "Therefore, let your hearts be comforted; for all things shall work together for good to them that walk uprightly, and to the sanctification of the church."  I know that if we all do our part and we walk uprightly, doing the things that we are supposed to, everything will work out fine.  I love you all, have a great week!

Elder Hanson

Look what I found!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Trip to Juigalpa and Zone Meeting

The ride to Rama on the panga...

Familia y amigos!

What is going down?  I hope all is going well and everyone is enjoying the nice cool weather! Things have been going pretty well here in Bluefields, it is still really hot and we have been sweating a lot.  I don’t think people realize how hot it is here. The investigators are doing great and we have been seeing a little more success here!

This week was a little crazy.  All week we were working to lock down 2 baptisms here.  One of them was an 80 year-old woman, the mom of a member here in Bluefields. He lives and is working in Panama, and he was super excited to hear that his mom was going to get baptized.  The other was the granddaughter of the first lady. The 80 year-old woman was a reference here and when we first went to put a fecha (baptismal date) with her the granddaughter wanted it too, so we prepared them both.  Everything was going really well, they got interviewed on Wednesday, and then we got a call. 

Wednesday night the Zone Leaders called me and told me that me and my district would be having to go to the zone meeting which was on Friday.  That meant we had to drop everything we had planned for Thursday and Friday.

We left Thursday morning on a panga to Rama and then the long bus from Rama to Juigalpa.  It was the usual ride, super long and boring, and of course it was exhausting.  We worked for 2 days there in the area in Juigalpa to help them find some people to teach.  They are lacking some people to teach so it was 2 days of straight contacting, knocking doors, and such.

We had the zone meeting on Friday which wasn’t too exciting. We just talked about our possibilities and then the Zone Leaders gave a lesson.  It was all right.  The APs were also there so I got to talk to Elder Collado.  Overall, the trip was exhausting with 10 missionaries sleeping in a tiny house and then having to wake up at 3:00 am on Saturday to catch the bus back to Rama and then the panga to Bluefields.  The panga on the way back didn’t have a cover and I didn’t have any sunscreen so I got super sunburned and am in pain. It’s mostly my arms that hurt.  Also, we didn’t really get to eat anything on Saturday because the panga came in late and we had to rush to the investigators houses for their baptisms.  All I had to eat was like a half of a loaf of bread on Saturday.  Luckily there weren’t any problems with the baptisms and they both happened.  

On Sunday we were blessed to have 12 investigators in church, hard work really does pay off.  I hope that all of you have a wonderful week, and I love you all a ton!  I can’t wait to talk next Sunday!

Elder Hanson

Me and Elder Collado in the Zone Meeting