Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Rama Chacra, Zona Rio Grande - Week 5... Most MIRACLE filled week of my MISSION!!!

Hey family!

I'm sure that this letter doesn't really matter to you guys since all you probably want is to see me in person, but I've got to write it because last week was the most miracle-filled week of my entire mission!

I endured to the end, and I think that the Lord wanted to help me know that, like those who marched in Zions Camp, He accepted my sacrifice. Every day of the week, as we prayed and searched for revelation in ALL of our activities, we found new people to teach. EVERY DAY OF THE WEEK! That never happens, and I'm pretty sure that it's the only time that it's happened in my mission. The best part of it all though is that we found REAL people, not just people who want to learn about the Gospel without commitment.

Tuesday night, at 8, we had a cita, and a vianda to pick up at 9, so even though the night was bitter cold and windy, we were going to be okay. Then, the person wasn't home, and the vianda was canceled and, yep, we were left to knock doors for an hour and a half to finish the day. However, Elder Bragg of the Seventy promised us that if we talked with 17 to 20 people in the day, one would listen. We had around 14 contacts and decided to pray to know what we should do. Elder Valenzuela felt that we should pass by one of the people we had contacted the other day, and as we walked to her house, I felt that we needed to knock doors until we got there. So we started knocking until we got to 16 contacts, without success. We knocked the next door, and from the window, I saw contact number 17 coming to answer. She let us in! Her name's Teresa, and she ended up telling us that she wants to have a closer relationship with Jesus Christ. We returned Friday night with a member, and on Sunday, the member brought her to church! It was a miracle! We sat her down next to the Branch President's wife, and they got along great. When we visited her after church that night, she said "Well, I guess I'm gonna have to stop believing in los santos" We taught her that her new santo can be El Santo de Israel. I have a feeling that she'll make it all the way.

On Wednesday, we found Oscar, who has cancer, We had a great lesson with him. However, when we returned on Friday night with a member, he expressed that he wants to keep reading the Book of Mormon, but would not like to continue the visits. I was a bit disappointed, but at least he was polite about it. I've been praying that one day, as he reads the Book of Mormon and remembers the good experience that he had with us, that he'll search for the church.

On Thursday, we had another grand miracle. The other elders in my district asked that everyone could get together to knock doors in their area to help them find new people. It's a huge sacrifice for us to go, because it takes 45 minutes to get to their area and 45 to return, but to show support, we went. I said a prayer beforehand, asking God that for our sacrifice to help our fellow missionaries, that He would bless the rest of the day so that we too could have success. I contacted with our Lider Misional, and it didn't go very well. Nobody wanted anything, so I started to pray in my heart. I tried to feel the Spirit telling me what I should ask for, and I felt that instead of asking that someone let us into their home, that I should ask for God to put someone in our path. The hour to return arrived, and we started heading to the meeting place. I talked with everyone that crossed our path, without much success. Just before turning the corner where the other missionaries were, I saw a woman standing close to the wall. I began to contact her, and she told us that the Catholic Church had rejected her, she hadn't liked her first evangelico church, because she felt the man that baptized didn't have authority, and that she and her family were just looking for the "Pure Doctrine of Christ". My jaw dropped! I taught her a brief summary of the Restoration, and she readily set an appointment for Saturday, saying that she was going to tell her husband (and yes, that's husband, they're married!) that we were going to pass by, so they'd be waiting. But the biggest miracle was when she told me where she lived. Chacra 13!!!!!! THATS MY AREA! I was sooooo grateful that day!

On Friday, while we were planning, we had an appointment with someone new, but everyone kind of felt that he was going to stand us up. So, we decided to pray to see who could be the backup plan, and a random, unknown part-member family that I had seen in the directory came to mind. We put them down. The appointment ended up falling, so we went to the supposed house of the family. A man was outside, and when we asked him if the family lived in the house, he told us that they had moved. I'm almost sure that he was lying, and felt strongly that he was actually one of the members of the family. but we decided to continue. However, the Lord works in mysterious ways. If we feel we should visit someone, and they're not home, we always knock a couple doors close by to see if the Lord led us there for someone else. After knocking about 10 doors, on the last door that we were going to knock on the street, a young man with glasses opened the door. Elder Lees began to contact him, and after Lees finished, he said "Come on in, the girls told me you guys would come" "What?" I was thinking, when he whipped out a lesson 3 pamphlet and told us that the hermanas from centro had contacted him, and told him that they were going to send us to his home Friday at 5 o'clock. They hadn't told us anything, but GOD PROVIDED (especially since it was 5:15!) We taught a great lesson and offered to pick him up to take him to church on Sunday. He declined the offer, and told us that he would arrive by his own means, which is the Argentine way to say that he's not gonna go XD However, Sunday morning, as I was happily seated close to Teresa right before the start of Sacrament meeting, lo and behlod, in walks RAUL! That never happens! I was amazed at the power that the Lord has!

Saturday, we went to the cita with Cintia, the lady whom I had contacted in the other elders' area, and she was not only home, but had actually let her husband know, and on Saturday, we met Alberto. We taught a very good lesson, and they committed themselves to seraching the truth in the Book of Mormon. They didn't commit to coming to church, because theyve been disappointed by so many churches that they wanted to see the Book of Mormon first, but we have a return visit for next Saturday.

On Sunday, to make a long story short (since this mail is already huge), through prayer and revelation, we found Jonothan who, when asked if he could ask God anything, responded "If I end up liking this message that you guys are gonna bring me, I'd ask Him how I can bring it to my family in Buenos Aires."

I just want to give my testimony that I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the Lord's restored kingdom upon the earth. I love missionary work, and I'm going to start working on my Family History in order to bring the gospel to all my family as well. The mission strengthened my testimony in so many ways, and to thank the Lord for this great opportunity, I'm going to continue giving my all until I'm hugging my Mom in the airport, and even when I'm just a member, I'm going to be a member missionary.

Love y'all! 

MOM! I love you!

See y'all soon.

Elder Jimenez





Monday, April 9, 2018

Rama Chacra, Zona Rio Grande - Week 4...

Hey everybody :)

Honestly, I'm getting kind of tired of writing. We're gonna see each other so soon! But I'm gonna get this one in for you guys :)

This week was busy, cold, and rainy! The first couple of days were just normal, working hard, but not finding many people. Thursday, out of nowhere, one of my Zone Leaders called me and said that he had an interview with President in Gallegos on Friday, and that I was going to accompany to him, so I had to be in the terminal at 7:45 Friday, with my passport. Well that came out of nowhere! 

So Friday, we took the bus to Gallegos, which lasted about 7-8 hours, and went to the capilla. President and Hermana Salerno were super happy to see me, which kind of embarrassed me, but I don't even care, it was a tender moment. I'm almost sure that President made me go with my ZL just because he wanted to see me haha! I got a sneak peak on the Family Home Evening that they're going to do with my zone in Ushuaia after the interviews. We're going to watch Coco, the Disney movie about Family History. I got to see most of it, and it's a great movie! 

Saturday, we spent almost all day on the bus. There were a lot of complications in the 4 border crossings, and the trip ended up lasting 10 hours (when if it goes well, it usually lasts 5-6...). So that took most of my day. 

Sad news: We decided to drop Patricia. Early in the week (Wednesday, I think) we brought a member to her house, and she was very, very drunk. Up to that point, we thought that maybe those first couple times that we had visited her we had just grabbed her on some bad days, but we thought that with her son home, and with our visits, she might lay off the alcohol a bit. However, in the visit with the member, we came to know that it wasn't that we found her on a bad day, it's that she's a full blown alcoholic. The lesson was a disaster, and the member, the most innocent sister in the branch, was pretty shaken up. My companions visited her while I was in Gallegos, and committed her to live the Word of Wisdom, but when we passed by Saturday night to put plans to take her to church, she was drunk. Again. The hard thing is that I want to help her, but when she's drunk, you just can't have a real conversation with her. It's impossible to feel the Spirit, and there's no progression. She wanted to go to church, but we couldn't run the risk of bringing her while she had been drinking, so we decided to drop her. We're going to try and put her in contact with Alcoh├│licos Anonimos, to help her, but we won't be teaching her more. 

I was a bit sad about that, because I came to know that my chances of baptizing were officially done, but that's not what it's all about. Looking at the positives, there have been many good things that I've been able to do in this area, like help various missionaries, especially my companion Elder Lees, who is literally the best missionary I've ever met, improve a ton the relationship that the members have with the missionaries, and find new people for my companions to teach.

This week, I read the story of the missions of the Sons of Mosiah. I liked how the Book of Mormon tells that the lamanites in the desert rejected Aaron when he brought them the Gospel, but then later on, in the midst of their trials, they remembered what he said, and without a sinlge missionary present, were converted to the faith. I may not be able to baptize in this last area, but I'm going to continue talking with everyone I can, in the streets, the busses, stores, their homes, and everywhere I can find 'em, and I'm going to try and plant as many seeds as I can.

I'm also so grateful for the man the mission has made out of me. The Lord has really molded me in these two years, and although I'm still very imperfect, I think I'm going to be able to serve others more than before coming down here. 

I love the Lord, and I want to dedicate my life to Him. I'm going to keep working in His work when I get home, spreading the light and peace that the Gospel brings, because I know that that IS what it's all about. 

FAMILY! I love you guys! I'm praying for you! Stay safe, well see each other soon :) 

MOM! I love you! I hope you get better! If you haven't asked Dad for a Priesthood blessing, do it! 

Love you guys :) - Elder Jimenez 

Monday, April 2, 2018

Rama Chacra, Zona Rio Grande - Week 3... Shoulder to the Wheel!

Family!

Not trunky at all right now, just workin' hard, but I can't help but be amazed that this is my 3rd to last time writing you guys... HOW CRAZY! This last week flew by, and we'll be seeing each other in no time! (just to get you guys trunky haha!)

This week was shoulder to the wheel! We worked hard, and in the end, saw miracles (the biggest of which was actually pretty funny). I was also able to do some great divisions, get a visit from the great and powerful Asistentes Viajantes, and do a special division with a member named Nahuel!

The division with Nahuel was really special. While we were thinking of ways to use our time to the maximum, as a compa├▒erismo we had the idea to do divisions with just 1 member in order to have 2 companionships working at the same time. So I went with Nahuel to the first visit with an antiguo investigador named Rafael. Upon arriving in his home, Rafael said "Let's break the working tools out!" and took out his Bible. I cracked my knuckles, said a silent prayer to the Lord to bless us with His Spirit, and almost heard the Spirit saying "It's game time baby!". We had been working so hard in these past weeks without any success, but thanks to the obedience of my companions and I, Nahuel and I qualified for the Spirit.

At first, Rafael began asking questions intentioned to get me off track and stumped, including the ideas of Heavenly Mother and the race of the leadership of the church. If the appointment had happened earlier in my mission, I may have been tempted to try to answer his questions. However, the Spirit whispered, and out of my mouth came the question: "Rafael, how bad do you want to know the truth? Do you really want to know?" He was surprised at the question. I then proceeded "Every answer to every question you may ever have is found in the Book of Mormon. You can pray and know that it's true" Maribel, Rafael's girlfriend, who had joined a minute after starting the lesson, listened attentively. We proceeded to talk about how to recognize the Spirit, and it filled the room. The Spirit was so strong that everyone could feel it. Maribel began to cry, and Rafael got quieter and quieter. Nahuel, a recent convert, and I gave powerful testimonies of the Book of Mormon and of the Savior Jesus Christ. The Spirit was literally pulsing in the room! After leaving them commitments, we all kneeled down, and Rafael offered the closing prayer, thanking God for the message that we had brought him. After leaving the house, and walking a couple blocks, we stopped to give a prayer of thanks. After the prayer, Nahuel looked silently off into the street, then said to me "My heart's still beating in my chest from the Spirit that was in that lesson. That was the strongest Spirit I've felt in a long time!"

I'm so grateful that the Lord gives the Holy Ghost to His worthy sons and daughters. Sadly, Rafael is choosing to reject the clear and powerful spirit he felt, and is not currently progressing. But we're going to work with him, and I'm hoping he'll have a change of heart.

However, not all hope is lost for one baptism more in the mission! I know that it's not about baptizing, but you can't blame a man that spent more time traveling than teaching for 7 months for wanting to get someone wet! Patricia. Like Luke Skywalker, she's my last hope, and she has to do with the biggest (and funniest) miracle of the week. We were discouraged with the strange attitudes that she had shown us the week before last week, and so we waited to visit her until Friday night. When we got to her house, we met her son Nicolas, who had arrived from Buenos Aires. Buen pibe! But here was the miracle: It became very apparent to me that during the first 3 interactions we had had with Patricia, she had been very drunk! It was hard to tell because she hadn't smelled of alcohol, and although she had acted a bit strange, I've met a lot of weird old people here in Argentina that were stranger than her. To my defense, neither of my two companions noticed either!

The miracle is that Friday night, she was sober, and desired to go to Conference! She's so much easier to teach while she's sober, and actually really likes the message. She told us that she wasn't going to be able to on Saturday, but that she wanted to go on Sunday. So, Sunday morning, we passed by her house with a member to take her to church, and to our despair, she answered the door in pajamas and said that the injury to her spine and knees were giving her a lot of pain, and that she wouldn't be able to go. Luckily, today on the earth, we have a prophet of God who, Saturday night, boldly called all of the priesthood holders of the church to rise up, and bless the people of the earth. So we broke out the consecrated oil, and gave Patricia a blessing. I told her that we were going to visit her between sessions, and if she was feeling better, could go to the last session.

Upon arriving at church, I offered a silent prayer, asking God that He would give Patricia strength, and upon arriving at her house after the first session, we found that she was feeling 110%, and was excited to go to the second and last session of conference! She LOVED IT! I'm praying day and night, and I think that if things keep progressing at this pace, we'll be having a baptism my last Saturday of the mission. PRAY FOR US!

And last but not at all least, General Conference. By far the best I've ever seen, it changed me as a man, and I think it changed my life. I feel proud to live in these last days before the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, and very pleased to have been able to be one of the lucky souls that was able to raise his hand in favor of President Russell M. Nelson. He is a prophet of the living God. Jesus Christ lives. I feel so privileged to be able to start my personal ministry in His service in these last weeks of the mission, and especially on the home front!

FAMILY! How lucky we are to be members of the true church of Jesus Christ! Let's pay it forward, and start ministering to all that surround us, searching for personal revelation, and blessing those who surround us! MOM! Enjoy spring break! I LOVE YOU! see y'all soon! LOVE YOU GUYS! - Elder Jimenez

P.S. Aguante un apostol latino y el tercer templo en la Gran Argentina! #TierraPrometida


Sunday, April 1, 2018

Rama Chacra, Zona Rio Grande - Week 2... Hard Week of Work!

Hey everybody :)

As I sat down today, it hit me that this is the 4th to last time that I'll write in my mission... Thats crazy! Not trunky though...

Sounds like you guys had a great week! Im happy to hear that everything's going well.

This week was HARD. Hard.

Upon arriving in the area, I quickly found out that we don't have a single investigator, and that our area is comprised of 3 main neighborhoods that are all 30 minutes apart from each other walking. Greaaaaaaat. Add on top of that that the work is really different from the office (the schedule too), plus were training, and I've got two areas to call 5 times per week each (those calls are in the night, when everyone else is relaxing and eating), and you'll get an idea of how I was feeling this week.

The good thing is that I'm good though :) I'm really worried for the area, because we worked really hard this week and had very little results, but there were many positives!

1) I think this was a transition week. I'm already getting more comfortable in the routine (never comfortable, maybe adapted would be the right word haha!), plus, the area makes us work smarter. We already lose an extra hour because of the special studies we do with Elder Lees, and walking from barrio to barrio takes time, so this week, we decided that were going to dedicate specific barrios to each day, and put all the appointments in those neighborhoods on those days. I have a feeling that next week is going to be more successful.

2) We already improved the relationship with the members a ton! There were some problems with the Branch President, but I arranged an appointment for him and the other elders and sisters in my district (who had been present in the problematic time) and they worked everything out! So now were good. Plus, there are some great members here. Chacra has the highest assistance of all the units in the mission with 130. We brought an investigator to church this week, and they did a great job fellowshipping her. Were going to work with them a lot!

3) We had an assistance! We had worked sooooo hard all week, and nothing. Nothing. Nothing. I wasn't frustrated, but I was super worried because if we don't find anyone, we don't teach, nor baptize. So we were working, Saturday night, closin' in on the hour to go home, and a member cancels the divisions we were going to do with him. Great. But then, a lady with a cane comes walking behind us, and I say "Buenas tardes". She says "No thank you" in a very bad english accent. How nice haha! So I say "Que bueno su ingles", and she looks at me with a face that says "You're kidding right" and walks over to her apartment building, and invites us in! We met her, her name is Patricia, and among all the crazy questions she had, we invited her to come to church, and she accepted! The only problem was that she lives about an hour and a half walking from the capilla, and she walks at a pace in which the tortoise and the hare would beat her XD

So we arranged for a couple members to help pick her and us up, and after a ton of effort, Patricia came to church! She had a good time, and we had arranged for a couple members to help host her. The experience left her willing to return next week. So we'll be working with her!

Now, I'll just get this out for now. After church, we helped her paint a room, and afterwords ate a stew she made (chicken neck isn't that great, but like Patricia says "It's cartilidge, not bone, so you youngin's with good teeth won't have any problems eating the whole thing!). After we ate, we tried to teach a bit, but the woman talks toooo much! She almost didnt let us get in a word! It slowly became apparent that she may just want us to pass by and talk with her, but not listen to the gospel, which is a no no. So we decided to make it clear to her. We told her "Patricia, were really grateful for all you do, and we love your company, but we want you to know that were not just passing by to chat. We're here to baptize you. If you want help to get baptized, we can teach you. But we can't just come and talk about other things." She didn't really react, so were still not sure if shell be a good investigator or no. Our plan is to leave her pamphlets and passages to read, and we'll answer questions in the appointments, and we're only going to pass by once or twice per week. All in all, she's good, and we're going to work with her, but we've definitely got to keep searching.

I'm not going lie to you guys, I think that these are going to be the hardest weeks of my mission. It's just tough here. I'm not sure I'm going to baptize, not even sure if I'm going to teach that much, but I can assure you guys one thing. I'm gonna wake up on time every day, study every day, pray, and work hard till the last day. I didn't give so much these past 24 months just to give up in the last. And I KNOW who I'm working for, and He gave His all for me, and He loves me. So I'm gonna go and give Him the tiny part that I can give Him of what He deserves from me.

FAMILY: I'm glad you guys had a "don't spill the queso" moment! I hope nobody was hurt though haha! SOFIA: Youre a legend! You inspire me! MOM! Just 10 more weeks, and you got it! LOVE YOU! Love you guys!

- Elder Jimenez

PS: They sent us a third companion named Elder Valenzuela from Paraguay. He has 11 months in his mission! He's doing great.




Rio Grande: La Capital Internacional de la Trucha :D
Rio Grande - The International Trout Capital

Monday, March 19, 2018

AP, Zona Comodoro Norte - Week 31 // Rama Chacra, Zona Rio Grande - Week 1...

Wow! I heard so many good things from you guys this week! I'm happy :D

This week was packed, and really interesting...

Week 1 in the office was the routine: Goodbye dinner to the retornos, welcome to the newbies, and new leadership training. President Salerno wanted me to lead most of the trainings, because he wanted Elder Singh to see how we do things in the office, so I still had to carry the load, and it was like all other week 1's... TIRING!





It was extra weird because Sage Beesley, a high school friend of mine, came to the mission! She looked pretty shell shocked! It was cool to talk to her though, and I think she'll be fine. She went to Ushuaia, so I'll be seeing her soon! We totally forgot to take a foto though (sorry Mom!)



At the end of the week, we had booked a flight with LADE, the trashiest, sketchiest airline on the planet, so that I could get down to Rio Grande. It's cool though, because instead of 19 hours on a bus, you have 2.5 hours in a flying garbage can that actually costs less :D However, Friday night, as I was halfway through packing, and getting ready to go to a dinner with Daniel y Maria (my investigators when I was a LZ in Comodoro Norte), the airline called me (at 7:45 PM) and cancelled the flight! I was MAD!!!! So I threw everything in bags, ran to the terminal, and took the last possible bus to Rio Grande. It was a close cut!

So yeah, I passed almost all Saturday on a bus that almost left me in Chile! I've become a pro at sleeping on busses though (I use my suit coat as a blanket, and I'm gone) During the trip, I met Jennifer from Italy who speaks English, she told me all about her travels (and gave me a ton of travel tips fof the Europe trip that I want to do with my #OfficialBestFriend Elder Austin Ramsey) and I met Guillermo, a petrolero that transits between Comodoro and Rio Grande for work. Guillermo didnt really want anything, but Jennifer was super cool and accepted a pamphlet of the Restoration. I hope she reads it!

When I got to Rio Grande, EVERYTHING CHANGED! Right before I came down here, President Salerno decided to make a few more changes... He assigned me to Rama Chacra de Rio Grande, as the new Lider de Distrito of Distrito Chacra! My new companion is Elder Lees from Mesa, Arizona (2nd companion from Mesa #Farabee) and he's in his 2nd transfer in the field, which means that on top of DL, I'm a trainer!

I'm beyond pumped for the new asignacion! Elder Lees is a capo, and he already speaks spanish well. Plus, I got to speak with the district last night, and they have a lot of potential! Deep down, I feel like the Lord knew all along that this was going to happen, and I feel like Chacra is the place thats meant for me!

I'm happy for all these changes because the truth is that I was feeling a bit bad when I first got here... I couldn't believe that I wasn't assistant anymore, I don't have a car, I'm far from my family away from home (President, Hermana Salerno, Ekblad, etc...), and on top of it all, IT'S COLD DOWN HERE! It's really, REALLY, cold! Plus, I don't regret extending, I really don't, but the thought did cross my mind that I would have been hugging Mom this Wednesday, and for the first time in my mission, I actually asked myself "What am I doing here?". In Tolhuin, maybe I felt that way sometimes, but I always knew deep down why I was there, but this week, I actually didn't know what I was doing on this freezing island without my minivan.

So I prayed. I asked God to show me why I'm here, why I felt like I needed to stay. And on Sunday, as I was in Priesthood, we read these scriptures in D&C 64:25,33-34 -->
25 Wherefore, if ye believe me, ye will labor while it is called today.
33 Wherefore, be not weary in well doing, for ye are laying the foundation of a great work. And out of small things proceedeth that which is great.
34 Behold, the Lord requireth the heart and a willing mind; and the willing and obedient shall eat the good of the land of Zion in these last days.
So that's what I decided to do. In that moment, I said inside myself "Father, I may not know what I'm doing here, I may not know what my purpose is, but I'm gonna do what I always do, from Tolhuin, to Gallegos, to Trelew, to Comodoro, and back to la Isla: I'm just gonna do what's right" That's been my whole mission! I haven't been perfect, and maybe I haven't always had a clear vision of the work, but I just keep working, and keep trusting in the Lord, and keep giving until the last drop. So I'M PUMPED! I think the Lord wanted me to figure all that out, and now He's revealed to me his real plan: CHACRA! We'll see how it goes!

Apart from all that, I learned to make an asado with President, and Hermano Sielas was way happy to see me, but is going to be heartbroken when he hears that I'm going to another branch!

FAMILY! I'm pumped that you guys are going well! You're all so trunky haha! We'll be seeing each other soon :) 

MOM! Congratulations on the new full-time job! I'm proud of you! LOVE YOU! 

SOFIA! Capa, capa, capa, capa, capa, capa, CAPA! Bien ahi con el tercer premio, sos una capa pero re capa, sos re inteligente. Felicidades loca! 

TE AMO! I love you guys! Have a good week :) - Elder Jimenez

Monday, March 12, 2018

AP, Zona Comodoro Norte - Week 30... Last group of Newbies.

Hey family :)

Sounds like you guys had a good week, so that makes me happy! I had a pretty good week as well!

As you guys already heard, we passed a PDay in Calafate, which was really cool! The glacier was really beautiful! It was huge, and every once in a while, chunks of ice would fall off and make huge splashes in the water. The water of the lake has a Carribean Blue color because of a substance that they call "Glacial Milk" so that's pretty interesting haha!










After going to the glacier, we went to centro, and I decided that it was finally time to buy some recuerdos to bring you guys, and I'll just let yall know, you're going to be spoiled when I get home! I spent a particularly large sum of money with some artisans who are members, named Pedro and Viki. They have a little baby named Jeremias who is literally, and they confess to this as well, the happiest baby on earth. The little guy was so cute! When we went to their tienda to buy some stuff for you guys, he was sleeping, but we woke him up, and he was all smiles. It was muy tierno!

I thought it was a worthy place to buy the bulk of my gifts for you guys because they're members, One of the pictures that I sent home is with Pedro in the terminal of Calafate. He had come to say goodbye to us and had made Elder Ekblad, Elder Singh, and I special pins with our names on them, and also, he gave me a ring, that he called the "Ring of Nefi". Its really cool, and I think I'm going to wear it the rest of my life as a recuerdo de Argentina.



So Calafate was awesome! After passing PDay there, we took a colectivo to Gallegos. On Tuesday it was Elder Singhs birthday, so we celebrated by eating sushi with the local elders, since Rio Gallegos has the best sushi restaurant in the Patagonia. It was really fun!



We had 2 days in Gallegos before the conference. In each of the 2 days, I was able to visit a family per day, los Vargas and los Baier. I was soooooo happy to hear that the Baiers are going to temple prep classes, and are determined to go to the temple to be sealed as a family this November! Those were big news for me!

los Baier




We also used the 2 days before the conference to work with the local elders. It was fun to see my old area, although these days I pass through there so much that it didn't have as much novelty as the first time I had returned.

After the conference, I had learned from one of my weekly calls that Comodoro Norte, the zone in which we live, still wasn't having much progress, so in an effort to help, after giving the conference in Gallegos, we took an 11 hour, overnight colectivo to come to Comodoro and push people to work. On Friday and Saturday, among all the other stuff we had to do, we were able to get out and do lots of divisions, giving our best effort to bring people to church, and progress as a zone.

Overall, it was a busy, but really fun week. We released transfers on Saturday. You all might like to know that Elder Allen, my trainee from a year and a half ago, is going to be a Zone Leader this transfer! I'm proud of him, he's learned and grown a lot, and he deserves it! He's going to be in Ushuaia, so the two of us are going to be in Tierra del Fuego.

However, President Salerno wants me to stay up here for the week to help show Elder Singh how to train the newbies and the new trainers and leaders, so I'm not going to make it down to Rio Grande until Saturday, on a direct flight on the sketchiest plane company of Argentina, LADE, haha! It will be fun to train the newbies though because my friend Sage Beesley from high school is in the group that's arriving on Tuesday. It's going to be weird, but fun!

All in all, I'm pumped to get back to the field for my last 5 weeks of the mission. I love Argentina, its people, the Lord, the Book of Mormon, and the mission. I'm excited to have an area where the biggest focus I have is getting out and preaching!

FAMILY! Mom is so trunky! She told me that I only have 45 days left, so that was a splash of cold water for me! I hope you guys are ready for a Star Wars marathon in the basement haha! MOM! You're so trunky! I'm glad you love me though :) I'm proud of you for almost making it through the school year! LOVE YOU!

Love you guys! - Elder Jimenez 




Monday, March 5, 2018

AP, Zona Comodoro Norte - Week 29... Trimestral (tri=3, mes=month, trimestral=3 months, o sea, 4 per year) Goals

Hey everybody :)

I'm glad that you guys enjoyed each others company this week!

This week for me was pretty busy! We gave 2 conferences, one on Wednesday in Trelew and one on Friday in Comodoro, both of which went well. We decided to continue focusing on the plan we put in motion in January, so we're reviewing some stuff in the conferences, as well as refining the plan a bit. It's going really well.

The historic record of the Patagonia for baptisms in a month is 38, which we set last year in July, which down here is always the most productive month. However, last year, President Salerno had put the goal of achiving 45 in a month. It was always there in our minds, but we never came very close apart from when we got 38, and most of the time, although it would have been cool, the missionaries didn't really put it as a real goal.

So this year, President Salerno (<-genious) decided that, instead of putting a super high goal every month that we never achieve, he put trimestral (tri=3, mes=month, trimestral=3 months, o sea, 4 per year) goals of 96 baptisms per trimester. He told us that if we can get 96 bautismos per trimester, even though wed only have to get 32 per month, instead of 45, we would increase the baptisms by 50% this year.

Closing up February, the funniest thing happened. We achieved 25 baptisms in January (which although it's not 32, is way more than last year, and a great achievement considering that we also had a good month in December), so that left us with 71 more baptisms to achieve the trimestral goal. Then, last month, we achieved 26 baptisms (which was really cool because for the first time ever in the mission, we're consistently having good months, with an increasing trend of baptsims), and when you subtract 26 from 71, it leaves you with.... 45.

March is different though. Weve never been so prepared as a mission to reach 45 baptisms. There are tons of investigators that have accepted baptisimal dates, and with the plan we put in place, the leaders have made a huge change, and are leading their zones and districts with a lot more ingenuity and power. I've got a great feeling about this month! If we can get 45 my last full month of the mission, and on top of that, achieve the 96 per trimester the first time we go after it, I will die happy!

Today, I'm writing from Calafate. On Saturday we came down here because President wanted to assist church, which was really cool. We got to do divisions with the elders here and a member. I went with the member, named Nico. We were knocking doors, not having much success, and I was like "Alright Nico, we need to set a goal. What do you want the goal to be?" We decided that we wanted to put 3 appointments for the elders to go to. We said a prayer, asking the Lord to help us with our goal, then, the next door we knocked, a man named Ricardo let us in! We taught a very spiritual lesson, and left him with a ton of interest and a return appointment. We then went on to set two more appointments with the next two people that we stopped in the street as we walked back to the meeting place with the other missionaries. I know that if we let the Lord know about our righteous plans, and ask him for help, we will have success!

President had to go to Chile for a couple days, so now, we're going to pass PDay here, then make our way to Rio Gallegos to prepare my last conference. Today, we're going to go see el Glaciar Perito Moreno, the biggest growing glacier in the world. I'm pumped! :D

To end on a spiritual note, this week, I've made an extra effort to read the Book of Mormon every day, and boy have I seen the blessings! I've been reading every night before I go to bed, and I kid you not, I've been sleeping better than ever! The Book of Mormon has become the keystone of my testimony, and I know that if we read it in a spirit of prayer every day, all the promised blessings from the prophets for doing so will be realized in our lives.

FAMILY: I'm glad that you guys were able to pass some time together this week! SOFIA! BYU! BYU! BYU! Nos vemos muchacha! MOM: You just had a same old same old week, being the hero that you are :) LOVE YOU! Love you guys :) - Elder Jimenez