Entering the home stretch… a big push to the finish line!

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The week of getting baptized is always the hardest week for the investigator because Satan works extra hard to get them to fall. That is awesome that Tayla was able to resist falling! Sadly, the same cannot be said for my investigators this week. Ironically, I was a worried about showing up late to the Mendoza family’s baptism, due to an appointment we had. Upon arriving a half hour late, I discovered that I had no need to be worried about being late. When I arrived, the members were still being in the process of doing the last minute preparations before the baptism. Chapin Standard Time at its best!  The only thing that was a little alarming was that the Mendoza Family had not even arrived yet, despite the fact that they are usually the first ones to arrive at activities. Fearing that the Mendoza family let Satan get the best of them, I quickly called Elder Cubas to see what was going on. Cubas informed me that Andres had not gotten back from work yet. This was odd because Andres has always gotten off from work at 12, and it was now 3:40. So we made my way over to their home. When we arrived, we discovered that Andres, out of anger, had hit his wife and stormed out of the house, and had not come back home since. After waiting there until 5pm, we finally decided that we were just going to have to postpone the baptism. It was heartbreaking to see yet another baptism fall through the last minute… starting with the family in Panca whose baptism never happened after it fell through. It was at least reassuring to hear Maria and her kids invite me to come back again when they do get baptized… which means there is still hope for the Mendoza family. Please keep them in your prayers this week. It does worry me a bit that they might end up feeling like the old man in my first area who stopped going to church because he felt that he disappointed everyone when he didn’t get baptized.

unspecified5Other than the sadness I felt for the Mendoza Family’s baptism not going through, I have been keeping myself fairly busy finding new families to teach, which has been helping me keep me distracted these last three months. In my new area there is a lot of damage control that needs to be done since the Elder that was here before me was super “baggy,” and did not work at all his last two months. Just to make the matter worse, the members are now super hesitant about working with us. I do not even dare to tell them how much time I have left in the mission for fear that they will assume I am baggy like the other elders. Apparently the ward members have a super bad impression about elders who are finishing the mission due to how many elders who have finished their missions super baggy in this area. I don’t understand why elders get baggy when it should be the exact opposite. Missionaries in their last three months should want to take advantage of the short time they have left. I feel now that my mission is coming to a close, and I have been working harder than I have ever before so that I can bring as many families to the gospel before I finish. Hopefully, through my hard work, I can convince the members here to change their opinions of missionaries who are finishing their missions. I do have to admit however, that one thing that is hard when you have 21 months in the mission field, is that you get tired faster. Before, when I would get home at the end of the day, I would have energy to make dinner and to read the scriptures, but now I just collapse in my bed the moment I get home.

Did I not tell you in my last email that I got transferred just a block away from my last area? This is why I was going to be able to see the Mendoza’s family’s baptism. My new companion is another tall gringo named Elder Whitney… and of course, he is from Utah. I don’t understand why every time President Smith puts me with a gringo, it always as to be some super tall guy. I know there are tons of other gringos who are just average size. What gives??

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