Monday, September 21, 2015

September 21, 2015

Glad you guys are having fun! Its awesome here in the Favorita! 

Where should I start.. we had ward conference yesterday that no one knew about until the day before. We had lunch with a counselor of the stake presidency who is in our ward Brother Pinto. He is an awesome guy. His wife knows English and when I don't understand something, she helps me out haha. It's kinda nice. Lets see... We had priesthood with the stake presidency. And it was awesome! We had people who never show up, show up this week!! We had 62 people in our ward!! I know it doesn't sound like a lot, but for here it is a lot so it was awesome! Also, during gospel principles we eat bread and listen to Hermano Chandia speak. It's pretty chill. We had an investigator show up for sacrament meeting but the only is the snake, the girl who goes after American missionaries. She wanted help with her English homework and was asking if I could come over to help her. Elder Pinedo told her that if we had time during the week we would try to come and pass by her house to try and be nice. And then Elder Pinedo was like we need to go talk to people real quick but we'll see if we can pass by this week. Bye. So we walked away. I felt kinda bad because it was kinda mean.. Had sacrament meeting. It was good... and then she wanted to talk to us again. She was telling me that there were 2 other missionaries a long time ago who would talk to her in English and she would talk back in English or Spanish. And my companion left to go talk with someone else right before this to set up a family night with them and left me standing in chapel alone with her. Well.... he was in the chapel too and there were tons of people in there too but he wasn't there to help me leave. So I told her that there is a rule for missionaries to talk only in their mission language and I could not talk in English. She didn't like that too much but it is true. I told her that there are institute classes that can help her with English but she didn't like that either. But hey, What Else Am I Supposed To Do??? I tried to help her but she denied it.. I don't think we will pass by her house again because she isn't progressing at all and is lying to us about different things too. So there's the crazy story for the week hahaha. 

Now a better one. So we went to visit this inactive family on Saturday. The Martinez family. They were there with their daughter and husband who live in Guaymiyen (they are inactive too) so we taught like their whole family. We taught about how to keep the Sabbath day holy. We were talking and usually I don't understand everything, but I could understand what they were saying. pretty much every word. And usually I don't talk more than Elder Pinedo, but I could talk and I talked probably more than he did. And honestly I don't remember every word I said. Actually, I can't remember half of what I said but what I do remember is that when I was speaking, I could feel the Holy Ghost and the spirit was strong. My words didn't feel timid but they felt powerful. It is amazing what we can do if we have faith in the Lord and that he will put the words we need to say into our mouths. I don't remember the scripture that says that but it is true. I can bear testimony that the gift of tongues is real because without it I would still be speaking my "Italiano Spanish" that Brent told me I had before my mission and I wouldn't be able to speak Spanish. It's kinda funny. When I started this letter, I started in Spanish and was trying to translate to English for the first couple sentences. Moral of the story, put everything you have into the Lord and he will Multiply your blessings and your abilities. Faith isn't easy though, it's work. James 2:17-18. 

I love you guys and I know you guys are doing great things over there in the US. Love you guys and I challenge you guys to try to strengthen you faith in Jesus Christ. Also, look for the blessings that God gives you every week. Because there are way too many to count. Just take a moment to pause and think about it. Its an awesome feeling to feel blessed and all of us are. 

Love you guys and see you next week! :)

Elder Hakes

**** When asked about the earthquake in Chile.....

We were in a lesson and we didn't feel it at all. It is a really old house too and so I believe that there were some angels there protecting us because every other person told us that there lights were swinging and it was a really really bad one. There were people like 4 houses down that were outside in case the house fell down. I guess it happened at the end of our lesson because when we were outside everyone else was too. But yeah, we didn't feel anything. There were a couple replicas that night but it wasn't bad. I only felt one and it was like when you'd hit a kind of  bumpy spot on a quad. Nothing bad. Elder Pinedo couldn't sleep well though. He woke up at every replica. haha.

Friday, September 18, 2015

September 14, 2015

Hey mom!! 
I hope all is good this week!! Did you get my pictures??? I sent them with the wi fi I had in the hotel in San Luis. This week has been a bit crazy and a lot of fun! I went to San Luis to become legal for the next 2 years which was awesome!! It was weird too.. it was kinda like a vacation to be honest. kinda weird. We woke up and did all the normal eat shower things, went to the place to be legal and sat there while everyone started to do the first part. It took a while because there were 17 of us.. then we ate lunch at a restaurant and studied for a couple of hours.  Then that night we went out in the centro for ALB. then back to the restaurant for dinner really late and to the hotel to sleep. Woke up and pretty much the exact same thing. We had some other missionaries show up that night too  to start their stuff so that morning we did second part while they did the first. Met up, ate at the restaurant again and ate some ice cream then  pack to go home. I was back in Mendoza around 9. Got back with Elder Pinedo then we went back to the pench. Crazy first 3 days. Then on Thursday I had diarrhea... it sucked. It was like straight water. TERRIBLE. But the day after, I was fine. 

Oh yea, Monday and Thursday Elder Pinedo woke up at 2:30 and woke me up too. In the morning we recite the missionary purpose right when we wake up. So, I wake up while he has started the purpose thinking I missed the alarm, which is not normal, but I went with it. I asked after we were done... did I miss the alarm?? He was like yes.... but I thought it was still dark outside from what I could see from my bed through the window so I asked, what time is it?? He was like.... ohhhh it's 2:30. So I Said....good night. So that was a little crazy. 

We had two family nights this week..both with members inviting nonmembers. We have 3 investigators because of it!! It was awesome!!! The first one we talked about families and the importance of families and then gave a historia familiar folleto to them. Sorry family history pamphlet to them. Mind switched to Spanish for a moment there. It was really good. The pamphlet is actually really cool!! The second one we had dinner with the lesson.  It was awesome!! We ate some food that is Peruvian, it was rice, egg, beef, chicken, and some other things but it was good and that's all that matters!! hahaha. Then we taught a quick lesson about the restoration because we didn't have time to talk about what we wanted to. It was already like 9 and we needed to leave. So we taught a quick 20 minutes on nothing we planned and I think we did really well! 

And yesterday I had a talk in church. Manuel who is the secretary and just got home from his mission like 3 months ago so he likes to go to lessons with us. We know him really well. He asked me in Sunday School to give the talk and I said sure, why not. Our church ends with sacrament. The reason he asked me to do so and not the bishop is because our bishop isn't at church very often. He has work a lot so he isn't always there. It's kind of a big problem that we are trying to work out. Anyways, I spoke about enduring to the end. I don't really remember everything I said but I think the Lord was helping me because it didn't feel hard. I just spoke like I speak English. well... a bit slower but more fluid than I normally do. hahaha. 

Oh yea, we have a snake investigator, scratch that. We have a dragon investigator. She only was talking with us because she likes gringos. It was terrible. Before I made my one comment she was looking at me much, but after then she just wouldn't stop staring at me. Like I kid you not. Straight 15 minutes of her staring at me. I tried to talk less and didn't really look at her much but she wouldn't stop staring at me. It was like kinda creepy... I asked Elder Pinedo and he said she was staring at me the whole time. When we were trying to leave she was trying to show off that she was learning English and that she knew it. So she was like.... by friends, good....... bye and all this really bad English. Yeah, it was bad. 

What else happened.. nothing much. It has been a good week other than the dragon. haha. Spanish is coming along really well I feel like my spanish is 10x better than last week. It was after San Luis that I just started speaking better and I don't know why? But I ain't complaining!!! haha. 

It's awesome here. We can see the Andes Mountains from anywhere in our area. I need to take my camera one day and take some pictures for you guys. I don't know if you have googled the Favorita on google maps or not but I'll take some pictures for sure. Well, hope everyone is having an awesome week and I love you all!!!

Con amor,
Elder Hakes

Monday, September 7, 2015

September 7, 2015

Hey mom!!!! 

Sorry I can't send pictures again this week because I don't have time. We only have like 30 or 40 minutes because I just found out I leave to San Luis to become a legal citizen or something. So, I leave in less than 2 hours and will be there until Thursday. It's kinda crazy!! 

Okay, so a few fun stories I had this week. So, me and my companion were sitting in the bus. I was next to the window and he was in the aisle next to people who were standing. We were sitting there and it starts to smell terrible, I mean really terrible. Then this lady asks me to open the window. She was standing right next to my companion and it smelt BAD, so Igladly opened it. So the reason it smelled terrible is the lady crapped her pants on the bus. And she had diarrhea and so it was on the bus floor too. She used like a newspaper to clean the ground!!! It was CRAZY!!!! hahha. 

I can understand the language a lot better now. I pick up like 25% of  what happens so that's good! haha. I can speak a lot more fluidly too. It was awesome yesterday we were teaching a woman who we just found and apparently the missionaries had taught her a long time ago but never again. We are going to look through the area book and find out because she seems like a snake. (A snake is a girl who takes lessons because she likes the missionaries and wants a missionary to take her back to the states. or wants to date us kinda thing. ) Anyways, when we were talking I could talk about all the things that I wanted too and IN SPANISH!! It was amazing. Gift of tongues is awesome. 

Oh and another story....this was yesterday too. We had a lunch appointment set up with Hermana Chandia who is the mother of the mission leader in the ward. It was the mission leader's birthday and so she invited us over for dinner with her and him for his birthday and to eat lunch with them. We showed up 30 minutes late because we thought we had more money on our bus cards than we did. So we had to go put more money on it then go to lunch..... Anywho, we show up and none of the food is ready. They hadn't started the chicken or anything. Then, one of the mission leader's friends or brother wanted to talk to me in English and so we were sitting there talking in English and his broken English. It wasn't entirely horrible, but it wasn't great haha. Then it is getting closer to the food being done and all these people start showing up. I think it was his whole family because there was like 15 of us and children. It was crazy. So we ate chicken, salad, and the potato crab egg salad, and bread. It was all really good but we needed to go to study because we were already way way late. Then Hermana Chandia pulled out a karaoke and started singing. Then a daughter tried to sing it was fun and awesome! She tried to sing over the rainbow, but then they thought it would be awesome to hear the big gringo ginger sing over the rainbow. So sure enough, I had to sing over the rainbow with the music and their whole family cheering me to do it. I did not want to, but I did anyways haha. Looking back on it now it was kinda fun but in the moment it was not cool at all haha!! We left after I sang but it was the weirdest fast Sunday I had ever had haha. Very different. We fast for the dinner on Saturday and breakfast in the morning which is very different too. 

Siesta throws off everything too. We study half an hour until 8 30 and then 8 30 to 9 30 for companion then to work. Return to pench and eat at 1ish then study 30 min for personal study at 2 30. then 3 to 4 is 12 semanas which are to help me be able to train an elder in 12 weeks, then 4 to 5 to do study of language. then work and regresar to pench at 8 30. Good stuff!!! haha. 

In San Juan they wake up at 7 30 and in bed at 11 30 which is way different haha. It's a little crazy here.During summer I guess it changes again too. Still trying to figure everything out but some day it will be like the back of my hand. 

Sorry to everyone else, I can't email long this week but next week I'll make sure to email all you guys back!! 

Love you guys and hope all is going good!! You guys are awesome and can do anything with the help of the Lord. When you feel down and like no one cares remember that god does. DyC 18 10. 

Love you guys and I'll talk to you all next week!! :)

Con amor, 
Elder Hakes