Saturday, December 28, 2013

Week 13 (12-23-13)

Every week there is just so much to say, but I have no idea how to explain it all. This last week has been  packed with so much, its impossible to tell you everything.

I’ve grown every single second this week. I feel like I am learning faster than humanly possible. I am having incredible times, stressful times, and exhausting times. This week has been so much fun for me. Elder Layton is incredible. 

Was of course when we got the news for cambios, so not much happened besides scrambling around and packing up. The rest of the day Elder Froerer and I were running around all of Nonguen saying goodbyes. We literally went from the top of the sector to the very bottom. It was an exhausting night. I was terrified and so stressed cause I’ve only been here for 6 weeks and for the first 3 I couldn’t understand hardly anything that anyone was saying. I was going to have to lead the sector and take charge to help Elder Layton get to know as many people as possible and have a productive week as well. 

We headed to the bus terminal and met up with everyone to get our new comps early that morning. We waited and met up. Finally Elder Layton and I met up, and I said my goodbyes to Elder Froerer and Shumway and then we left and went to unpack Elder Layton. We soon got our stuff in order and went over some plans. We worked up in E and got to know everyone up there, like Ignacio, Familia Neira, Matias, etc.  Afterwards, my head hurt after trying to speak so much Spanish and guide Elder Layton around for the first day. 

We worked so so so hard, and our spirits were high. We found more and more  future investigators. It was a super long, but good day. It was basically just running around introducing Elder Layton to members and finding people. We also had a baptismal interview in Collao with one of their investigators that went really well. And after that, we went to Concepción because Elder Layton had choir practice. We ended that day completely exhausted. 

We had our Christmas conference. It was so much fun. Everyone headed to the giant stake center chapel in Concepcion. It’s one of the biggest chapels in the entirety of South America. We had some workshops and classes in the beginning, then we had the elderes and hermanas who were going home  after this next cambio bear their testimonies. Then us new elderes and hermanas had to introduce ourselves. We then had a great lunch in the giant gym in the church. After, we had the devotional where the choir of some Elderes and hermanas sang some great Christmas songs, and watched some parts of the new bible videos in between songs. I felt the spirit kind of unleash on my soul. I was touched and I felt my saviors love. I felt his love that he was sent here and died and suffered for me personally, and knows me perfectly. I know he lives and is mindful of me. 

We woke up and studied and organized our room a bit. We had a good planning session for church attendance and a good comp inventory. We had another exhausting day of work including another interview in chillancito. All went over well and Elder Layton, because he's super intelligent, had a lot of the area memorized already.

We had some good visits with a few people, and then set up for an activity Elder Froerer and I had planned. We planned a Postréton, (which translates to something like a Dessert fest competition thing.) The activity went really well, and although we didn’t get as many investigators there as we would have liked, we had a few menos activos, and others who came by surprise. It turned out good. We made some ginger snaps for our dessert. The activity started out with a musical number by the relief society, and watching some videos. We then ate some desserts and the judges had to decide which was most delicious. They said that we would have won, but since we're missionaries, they gave the prize to the pie that Miriam and Lidia brought. It really was delicious and deserved the prize of a 2 year free subscription to the Liahona.

Great church meeting. We had our highest attendance ever topping at 132 people. The chapel was PACKED. It was a mix of a Christmas program, and a primary program. It was so great. We had good classes and everything. Everything was really great, except the fact that Ignacio had to go home before it started because he felt sick, and our investigators made excuses and never showed up. But everything else went well. We worked really hard that day and eventually met up with hermano Christian Moya who is Jenny Reyes' brother. We went around and visited some families and it went really well. 

Monday (today) 
We did some super deep cleaning this morning. Our house has never looked so good and has never been so organized. We all felt good and satisfied this morning. We headed out to the centro soon after and Elder Garcia and I went to Doggis and had some completos for lunch today. And now I’m here typing. 

This week was tough, exhausting, exciting and amazing. Confusing right? Every day was painfully long, and tough. It was super stressful for me to make the right decisions and lead Elder Layton along to get to know the sector. But all in all, as I look back, the week zipped by. It hardly feels like it was anything at all. I cant believe how time works around here in the mission. 
Elder Layton is so different from Elder Froerer. It’s a huge change. Elder Layton is coming from being one of the office elders so he is ANXIOUS to work. We pushed so hard this week. The results were clear. We were a lot more productive. Elder Layton is 20 years old and is from Mesa Arizona. He’s a lot taller than me and is really skinny. He’s super intelligent. He knows how to do basically anything. Really, he can do anything you can imagine. He is a great missionary, and a bold teacher. He strives to excel in every aspect of a missionary. We are going to really try and put a new face to the missionary effort in Nonguen. It’s a good time of excitement. Out of all that he can do, he loves to sing. He has a good voice. He took choir in high school, and studied a bit of music in college. He is always, always positive. He is always acting in a kind manner to everyone. He is always super organized and is a great worker and studier. I’m am so excited to work with him and learn from him. These next 6 weeks are going to be a blast. 

Elder Garcias' new companion is Elder Montaña. He’s an elder who is nearing the end of his mission and is still going strong. He is always bursting with energy. He’s always positive and outgoing. Elder Garcia is having a heck of a time with him as well. Elder Montaña is from Santiago, and is 21 years old. 

Elder Layton is super musical and Montaña is as well. Elder Layton has a Ukelele and Montaña has a guitar. So in other words we have a nice little possibility of a mission band in our casa. 

Exciting times happening right now. This week is going to be incredible and we have some great plans. I’m going to be spending some time with some incredible families for parts of this holiday oriented week. I hope all of you at home enjoy the holiday season. I am so grateful for the true meaning of it all. As we reflect this season on our dear savior who was born so many years ago, let us remember who he is, what he did, and his influence on each of us every day. I am so grateful for my Redeemer, and my Savior. I know he lives. I know he suffered and died for us and through that he knows us perfectly. I am so grateful for this knowledge of him and this grand opportunity that I have to serve him and testify of him. He is my Savior, Lord, and King. I hope all of us have a great Christmas. I’m so grateful for the opportunities I have to serve.

May your Christmas be everything and more. I miss you more than ever, especially through this holiday season. I love you all so much. Until next week. 

Elder Ethan Haws. 

Monday, December 23, 2013

Week 12 (12-16-13)

Hola! Again another week has gone by. It’s been a good week. We have worked hard and I have learned a lot of lessons this week. It’s so great hearing from everyone and how everything is going on at home! I can’t express how grateful I am for all of you. I love you all. 

This week wasn’t much better as to finding more people, but I still had a good time and learned lots. It was eye opening in a lot of ways. 

Was kind of crazy. Things just got to a boiling point with all the frustrations we have been having lately. Elder Froerer got a little flustered and it wasn’t too fun. We got back to the casa and relaxed a bit. We went up to one of the hills in our sector, and we got some members to go help us find and teach people. We were stoked. We taught a super Catholic hermana, and an Evangelical preacher. The lessons didn’t really phase them but we were glad we actually taught two more new people. We went back down and had a fun noche de hogar(family home evening) with la famila Reyes, Miriam, and Lidia. 

Regular day of work, and not much happened. We were working in A and D, which have been pretty much dead for the past while as to finding more people. We also met with our ward mission leader, Pato, and set goals for mission work in the barrio for the coming year. 

Somewhat regular day once again. Elder Pulsipher, the second counselor in the mission presidency came to work on his documents and all the work we have done with them (the p-doc where we go out and verify old and inactive members of the church with the little information we are given, like an address.) He came to the chapel and we worked in MLS and updated records of the church. Also, he gave us an updated list and new stuff to do. Since Elder Froerer’s chances were high of leaving this cambio, we had to use part of our morning studies to go to the chapel and update records with the 6 and a half months of knowledge he has gained of Nonguen. We worked on that for a while, and then had a normal day. We met with the usual people like Ignacio, Matias, and Tomas. And then we worked in C. We found this guy named Ricardo who is strongly addicted to smoking and drinking and owns a nice house. He has a huge garden and patio within his gated property. He looks like he’s 50 years old or so and is taking care of his 85 year old mom who can’t do much at all. He is a really friendly man, but is stressed with the burdens of life. He wants to change and have more peace in his life. We taught him the restoration, and it went pretty well, but since he was kind of drunk he didn’t catch on too much. 

We worked with the p-doc records in the morning and had another kind of non- exciting day. We met with some good people but nothing amazing really happened. 

We had planning for church attendance, and companionship inventory. It went really well. We both kind of figured out why E Froerer and I had been companions all along. We brought up that at times we have felt kind of distanced as companions, and that there was some friction at the moment. We discussed in great detail patience and things we have learned. We haven’t always gotten along that great. But we have learned so much from each other. He is the complete opposite of me. He always played sports, can make decisions on a dime, and tends to lean to "If you want it done right, do it yourself." I’m completely opposite. We have both learned patience and humility. Through this talk, we became better companions. We had yet another normal day. We ventured out to another sector, Santa Sabina, where Elder Froerer had to give an interview with another investigator. After, we came back and worked some more in D.

Better day. We finished up the p-doc inventory, and went to lunch with hermano Wladimir Aburto Rico. He’s the guy we have been helping move boulders, and carve stairs in his backyard for service times. I had no idea what I was getting into when we went to lunch. Little did I know that the hermano loves to have food challenges with the missionaries. We walked in and sat down to a table filled with every condiment, aliments (side food) for tacos you could ever imagine. We were going to eat some serious tacos. We all sat down and began to eat. At first I ate slow, cause I didn’t want to look like a pig, and eat all the food. But from seemingly nowhere the hermana just kept going back and getting more fresh tortillas from the kitchen. They just kept heaping on my plate. We ate until it hurt. The hermano finished at about 10 and Elder Froerer and I couldn’t take more than 9. It was ridiculous. We spent the rest of the day waddling around Nonguen with our stomachs about to explode. It was a good time. We had some good lessons and things went all right.

Good day. Our church block was cut to an hour cause of the voting and election of the new presidenta de Chile. We had a good lunch at la familia Ojedas. They are such an incredible family. After, we went to the house and studied, prepared, and relaxed and laughed with our extra time. After, we visited with some people. We were invited to a surprise once with la familia Torres. They cooked up some delicious Sopapias. They're like mini scones that taste really good. We visited with Miriam and Jenny as well. We had a nice day, and we went home finishing the week with a good attitude. 

Today was cambios. Our zone has stayed pretty much the same but Elder Froerer is leaving to Talchauano. Elder Shumway is leaving to be a zone leader in Chillan. I’m going to miss these guys. My mission dad is always going be one I’ll never forget, same with Elder Shumway. My new companion will be Elder Layton. He was one of the office elders and he’s going to be great. I’m excited for these next couple weeks. 

The week hasn’t been anything spectacular. We didn’t really find anyone special or have any major events occur, but I learned a lot about myself and what mission work is about. Even though times get tough out here, I only need to focus on my purpose and look on the bright side of things. I’m grateful for the help of a gracious Savior who knows my struggles perfectly out here. I’ve had good times, and I’ve had the rough times. Both have taught me so much during the 12 weeks I’ve been a missionary. I’m grateful to be able to just be here and serve with everything I have. I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to bring people to the source of true happiness and to be able to serve them and befriend so many people. I’m grateful for my testimony that I have to share. God lives and he loves us. His Son Jesus Christ is our Redeemer. He leads this church and this work. I’m grateful to be a representative of Him. I hope you all have another great week! I miss you all and love you so much. Till next time. 

Elder Ethan Haws

Week 11 (12-9-13)
Again, another week has gone by so quick. Thank you for all your letters, encouragement and love. This week has been another roller-coaster. We had good times and we had the bad. But what else can you expect from the mission. I am so grateful for all of you. You all mean so much to me. 
This is how the week went down. 
Monday was really regular but it ended up being terrible.
We had a nice P day at the casa. We didn’t do much but lounge around and relax. E Froerer and I went out and worked in area D for the rest of the day. We had planned to visit one of Froerer`s old converts named Jessica. Elder Hutchins, (Elder Froerer`s first son) and Elder Froerer found her and worked really hard to convert her. She eventually married her husband and was baptized. She has three little kids and a husband that’s crazy. He’s bi polar and has the shortest patience span anyone could ever have. She has been coming less and less to church. For the past 3 weeks she hasn’t even shown up. So we went to visit her. She opened the door and the house was kind of chaotic. She yelled back to ask if it was ok for the missionaries to visit, and her husband, Miguel, yelled back ``no I’m studying`` and so on. We talked with her for a bit, and Elder Froerer reached to the point where he asked if she wanted us to come back anymore, or if she had any interest in the church anymore. She said no. She never wants us to come back, go to church or have anything to do with it. It shattered Elder Froerer. After the bad week, he was at his wits end. He worked so hard with her. And it all came down to that. It was a hard day.
Regular day, but we ended up being excited because after a week and a half of not finding anyone, we found 2 possibilities with investigators. We were excited. It was a regular day.
Exciting and new cause I had a mini cambio(exchange) with Elder Noe from my zone. Elder Froerer had to do an interview with his comp so we switched and Elder Noe came here. He is a massive guy cause he’s on the BYU football team as a cornerback. Everyone we talked to just stood there for a second and was kind of startled because he’s tall and muscular. Good teaching tool at times. But it was fun. We had a service project at la familia Ruminot`s house. We trimmed grass and rose bushes that had grown into trees. So while we worked we got to know each other. We talked about our interests, dreams, life, and the mission. He is a great guy. We soon enough finished up and went inside to find that la hermana had made these insanely good fruit smoothies. After that we bought some empanadas cause our lunch fell through with one of the members. Those empanadas were really good. We worked out in area E and D. We met with people like Ignacio, la familia Ciudad, and Tulio. We found a lot of new possibilities and worked really hard. Something funny and strange happened while we were contacting. We stopped at a house, and a white guy with a shaggy brown beard walked out and we started talking Spanish. He responded saying, ``sorry mates, I don’t speak Spanish`` This guy was from Australia. He is here visiting his family in Chile, and riding his motorbike around South America. What are the odds of that? Since Elder Noe can’t really preach in English I gave it a shot. He had the beliefs in like an inner spiritual self, like finding yourself kind of deal or church in your heart. It was so weird and funny. It’s so strange; my mouth wasn’t really working in English. It was such a weird feeling being more accustomed to Spanish than English. After, Noe was freaking out because the guys name was Michael. He told me he would always practice his Australian accent with his friend and pretend to be Michael. He was stoked that he got to meet an actual Michael from Australia! I was too. We had a good lesson with Tulio and finished out the day. I learned a lot. I learned that it’s good sometimes just to go out and simply be relaxed and enjoy the work. Work hard of course but just be happy while we’re doing, even add some humor into the work to lighten things up. I learned a lot from his example.
Thursday was really normal again.
Friday was different though. 
We had a normal morning with studying and planning. We had planning por la Iglesia to get people to church and after picked up lunch from the wife of our ward mission leader. It was just simple spaghetti. We were eating lunch inside the house when we heard some commotion outside. Elder Shumway and Garcia were out there with Gringo, and the other dog, Cubilio. We stepped out the door, and there was blood everywhere. Gringo had gotten so desperate to get to Elder Shumway that when it tried to hop the fence with razor points on it, its paw got stabbed and caught on it, it was stuck screaming and hanging from the fence. They had to run over and lift him off and then blood just came flooding out. Blood was everywhere, and it wouldn’t stop flowing out. We tried making a makeshift tourniquet but it didn’t do much. There wasn’t a veterinarian around so we called the supposed owners. They lazily showed up a good 30 minutes later and realized that it was a serious problem and that Gringo was nearing death. So since they didn’t own a car, they forced Gringo to try and walk over a mile to Collao. They dragged him along, and now there are bloody tracks running through Nonguen and Collao. Crazy moments. 

Later that day Elder Shumway and Froerer had mini cambios with the Assistants; which left me and Elder Garcia on another mini cambio. While we were working, I just made a decision to visit someone I had planned for out of the blue. I don’t know why, but we just started walking there, I didn’t think twice about it. We visited with Tomas for a good 30 minutes, and all he wanted was to be baptized. Elder Froerer had met with him once or twice but nothing really happened. This time we met with him and he was prepared. We set a fecha(baptismal date) with him and I hoped Elder Froerer and one of the Assistants were setting another fecha(baptismal date)  with another of our investigators. We worked in Collao for most of the day and it was a good cambio. We headed back to the house and visited with the assistants for a bit. Elder Froerer had been able to find a lady that was a golden investigator. She accepted a fecha(baptismal date) within 15 minutes. We were so excited. Unfortunately though, They had a disastrous lesson with Tulio. They met with him and he was drunk. He kept on saying no to everything and that he was strictly catholic. They said they got really bold and promised him blessings from completing things and trials for not. So Tulio was left hanging from a thread as an investigator.
Saturday was normal. 

Translation for the "let us save the estuary" mural:
"The mapuche is the defender of the land, water, and nature. Like in the estuary, Mapuche blood flows in our veins, to protect the nature that God has given us.  Take care of it!

Sunday was normal too. 
We had a good church meeting. And visited with a few people. The sad thing was we didn’t get a single investigator to church. We were really disappointed for this. Our hopes for our investigators fell a little bit. But we’re going to work hard this week to get things back up again. It ended up being a so so week. Better than the last. But still kind of feeling slow
I’m grateful for the opportunity to serve. I’m grateful for Gods hand in the work. Every week I see his hand in my life, and in the life of so many others. I have a strong testimony that he loves us, and knows every one of us so personally and so much deeper than we can possibly know. I’m grateful for the opportunity to see so many miracles and see his hand in my life and others. I’m grateful for my Heavenly Father, and my Savior. Through Christ’s Atonement the labors and stresses from life of a mission are lightened. He knows my sorrows and worries perfectly. I am so grateful to know I am never alone. My testimony grows every second. I am so excited to work and experience so many new things. I will continue forward with faith and my smile this coming week. Thank you so much for all your love, care, and messages. I love every one of you so much. Until next week. 
Elder Ethan Haws

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Week 10 (12-2-13)
Every single week without fail, I sit here for a minute and think, ´´where can I even start to write.´´ 
This week has pushed me to my very limits. It was incredibly, incredibly, INCREDIBLY difficult. We went from a week to super bacan numbers and experiences to rock bottom. we couldn’t of had a worse week. We found no one. Everyone the entire week rejected and were, at times, very rude. It pushed not only me, but Elder Froerer to the edge as well. I constantly was weighed down with stress. I can’t really tell you how stressed I was at some points. But I know as I keep working and forgetting the bad and trying as hard as I can, things will get better. 
I’ll give you some slight details of the week
Was just a regular p day. We didn't do much. It was Elder Garcia´s birthday as well. So Elder Shumway got him a trophy. We relaxed a bit, and cleaned the house. We worked a bit and had a few lessons. 
Wasn’t too exciting, didn’t find any leads to any other investigators, We have only one serious investigator at the moment. 
(Side tangent)
An older man named Tulio. He was taken in by la familia Ojeda. He used to be one of the regular drunks just living out on the streets here in Nonguen. (By the way, there are TONS of drunks here. I’ve gotten to know almost all of them.) He didn’t really have anything going in his life. So one day, the hermana took him in under the conditions that he would try and stop drinking and smoking and start learning about the gospel. One night we went in and found him and taught him. He is one hilarious guy. He has kind of an innocent, dumb blonde appearance at first, but he is intelligent and funny. He has Italian ancestry so he has white skin like ours. He’s something like 57 years old. So we've been teaching him and he has been really receptive to all the doctrines we have taught. I feel such godly love for the people I teach. I love teaching them and helping them get closer to the Savior. 
So Tuesday night, we had a Noche de Hogar with Tulio and the Ojeda family. We watched the restoration and discussed the doctrines and lesson behind that. It went really well. We had juice and completos after. 
I had a mini cambio with Elder Ramirez, my zone leader. I was scared out of my mind for this. It was my showtime. We had a zone meeting and discussed goals. After that E Ramirez and I left to Nonguen. We worked hard. It was just a long hard put your shoulder to the wheel kind of day. Every plan that I originally had fell through. It was humiliating in some ways. I felt like my Spanish came to a screeching halt in some parts of the day, it just wasn’t working out. I couldn’t speak, and I was scrambling for other ideas constantly. By the end, I was drained and dazed. My mind was just fogged up from how long and tiring it was. 
We ended the mini cambio and went to work. In the morning, we did a lot of P doc. Its just verifying the old and severely outdated records of the church here in Chile. So we go around with a list and just verify where old and inactive members of the church live. After lunch with an hermana, we worked like crazy. This is where things just looked impossible. We found no one still. We went everywhere and tried everything. We still found no one. We were rejected, and even got to the point where we just stormed away and had to take a moment to get the spirit back. By the time we got back to the casa we felt beaten. I was so clueless of what to even do or think. 
Since I’ve had 4 weeks out in the field now, Elder Froerer is pushing me to do a lot of the planning, working, and teaching. Especially cause he has 6 months in Nonguen. He has been here forever, so we are preparing for cambios so if he gets shipped out, ill be ready to be el dueño (in charge) de Nonguen. 
Anyone who knows me, knows or can tell that I’m terrible at taking charge and making decisions at times. It’s a real problem that I have. Out here in the mission, I’s unacceptable. I've constantly felt a deep pressure to overcome my weakness there. Sometimes I lack serious courage and self esteem to push over it. It is my biggest short- coming. I've been working on it and I will work on it until the day I die. So in constant fervent prayer I have been seeking divine help with this. I know that with my Heavenly Father and Saviors help, this burden may be made to seem light.
Regular day, we worked hard. We had a mutual activity at the church that night, and even some non- member jovenes  (youth) decided to join. It was good. 
Another hard day, with little that came out of it. We were in sector D and taught the regular people like familia Ojeda, Sean y Nicolas, Jessica, y Hermana Ciudad. We contacted like crazy, and found some really mean people. 
A better day. Its always nice having a Sunday to spiritually refill at church. We had a good fast and testimony meeting. We have some spiritual giants in our barrio (ward). It’s amazing. Both extremes so close here in Nonguen. Ive never seen such a contrast in people before. Ignacio received the Aaronic Priesthood and was ordained a Priest! Entonces, Chandler, you and Ignacio had a good Sunday. Crazy how that both my brother and recent convert are now in the same ranking. Ignacio is on top of the world. He always talks about how he feels the love and power of God. He feels amazing. And seeing him always makes me feel better. We worked hard this afternoon as well. No fruits, still. 
Got up, studied and seriously cleaned the house. It was a good morning. We live in a cleaner place now. The four of us Elders Froerer, Garcia, Shumway and I have been having a good time here in the centro. We got a flipping delicious lunch where I got my first LEGITAMATE completo. We went to a thrift shop kind of place and I got some sweet ties for 500 pesos each. (a dollar) and now I’m sitting here typing. 

Its been a tough week not having anything starting up, or anything going for Elder Froerer and I. I’ve struggled a lot, and of course from that, I’ve learned a lot about myself. At times I’ve questioned everything that I’m doing. I’ve looked deep inside myself and pondered a lot about missionary work, life, and what I need to do. I’ve felt alone, and lost at times this week. But still, I know my savior knows exactly where I am at. He has felt this. With this knowledge, I am pushing forward. I am relying on no one else except my Heavenly Father and my Savior, Jesus Christ. I know things will get better as I continue to go forward with faith, to work hard and forget myself. I have a testimony that is still a roaring flame. I’m grateful to be serving. I’m grateful for my calling to be a representative of Jesus Christ, to testify of him. 
It’s crazy thinking about everyone at home. It’s a different world over here. I love each of you so much more than you know. I miss you all! I hope that this next week is good for all of you. Till next week.

Elder Ethan Haws
Week 9 (11-25-13)

This week has probably been the single most incredible and miraculous week of my entire life. Many times this week I have just stood there in amazement of Gods tender mercies, miracles, and love for his children. 

I am so thankful for all of your support. It really keeps me going through all the days of the week. I can’t begin to explain how grateful I am for all of you. 

I want to tell the story of Ignacio together so it makes more sense. It is one of the greatest miracles I’ve­­­­ ever seen and same for Elder Froerer. 

So on Monday, Ignacio didn’t want to get baptized. He was really unsure about the Book of Mormon, Joseph Smith, and Thomas S Monson. We didn’t think he had a chance. But we asked him what he was looking for. He said he wanted a big answer, something big to happen, a dream even. We kind of taught him that you just can’t command God to do things. Then we told him, that if he wants his answer, there is one way that he could receive one. We taught him about fasting. That he shouldn’t eat for 24 hours and read, ponder, and pray constantly throughout the fast. He accepted. So on Wednesday, we all started after lunch. I knelt by my bedside in probably one of the most humble prayers of my life. I asked with my whole heart that he would feel the truth of these things in his heart. I prayed that if Heavenly Father desired it, He would give him an answer. I even got more specific. I prayed that he would read the Book of Mormon, and that the words would sink deep in his heart, that he would feel peace, and remember all of the experiences that he has had with us. I prayed specifically that he would call us when he knew these things. I prayed that he could find a way to be baptized on Saturday. 

Later on Wednesday, Elder Froerer`s phone rang. Ignacio called and said, ``You told me that i needed to read while i was fasting, give me something to read.`` We told him to read Alma 32 and Mormon 7. He asked, ``What do I do if I feel something?`` We told him just call us. Later that night we were with la familia Ojeda. Sure enough, E Froerer`s phone rang. Ignacio told him that he had been reading and he had felt this super deep peace, and he knew he needed to be baptized this Saturday. I don’t think I’ve smiled bigger in my life. The next day, We visited with him. He told us that that night he had had another dream! He saw a man dressed in pure white and he told him that he needed to completely immerse himself in the church. He told us that he re-saw all of his experiences with us. Scriptures, the mission president, the dream. He told us all those things just hit him hard, again and again and again. He knew he needed to be baptized. So this Saturday, he was baptized. Sunday, he received the Holy Ghost. Without a doubt God heard my prayers. God gave us a miracle. It was a miracle. My testimony grew so much because of this week. 

Quick summary of the week.

Of course was P day. It was awesome! got to go to the beach and have an incredible day of shopping and hanging out with all the elders. We got home and we cleaned the house. At last I got to open the package. Oh man, it was like Christmas on steroids. Everything was perfect. I even took out the micro sd card with music on it, and to my surprise, I got it to work in my mp3 player. So we lounged around and studied listening to my music for a while on our beds. That night we had a good noche de hogar with the Reyes. It was a lot of fun. 

A really regular day. Had district class, completos for lunch at the Reyes, and got a lot of contacting done. We prepared to start a fast for Ignacio on Wednesday cause he couldn’t today. 

Incredible day.  Had a conference for the new missionaries at the mission home. I was able to see my friends from my generation and learn a ton about missionary work. After the conference, I started my fast for Ignacio. After Elder Del Rosario and I had another mini cambio. We were in sector D and we worked hard. We got a lot of contacts and met a really catholic family. When we stopped to think for a minute, the name Hermana Cuidad popped into my head for some reason. So I said, Why not. We visited, and turns out there is a non member living there too. To our surprise we just started teaching him the first lesson and it went well. It was a miracle. Later E Froerer and I met up again and we visited some families for the rest of the night. Ignacio called us that night as well. 

Had another morning in the conference, and finished that up. After we visited some other people, then Ignacio. We went over some baptismal interview questions, and then he was interviewed an hour later. HE PASSED and we were bouncing off the walls with happiness. It was an incredible day. 

Regular day. Elder Froerer and I worked really hard. I placed my first Book of Mormon with a guy that we met, and we got a lot of contacts and new investigators. We were still ecstatic with Ignacio’s miracle. 

We had a service project carving more stairs in the guy’s backyard. We saw a huge 7 inch long centipede, and a 4 inch long spider in the ground. Fun stuff. We worked and soon enough we were at the chapel preparing and filling the font. Time flew by, and the service started. Elder Froerer was able to baptize Ignacio. After they changed, Ignacio came out and we had a long conversation. He told me he has never felt so happy, right, and at home. He kept on saying he felt like a new man. He was close to tears. He wished that his family was there to support him. Sadly, they’re all catholic and evangelico. He doesn’t have that much support, but he is an incredible kid. After, he gave his testimony. It was incredible. He shared his story and he boldly stated that he knew these things were true. It was the greatest fist pump moment of my life. 

Regular day. Good church service and good study times. We had a ward activity where willing members meet in the chapel and go out and visit menos activos, or members who have been missing church. Elder Froerer and I went with Fransico, the 2nd counselor in the bishopric. It was a good time. We got to go visit with the familia ojeda and have a great lesson after. 

Monday! (today)
Wow. This morning I got on my knees and thanked my Heavenly Father for the miracles that have happened the past week. I asked that they would continue to happen this present week. Little did I know that the next few hours would be the most amazing miracle of my life. We got ready and went to play pelota on a nice field in the centro. When we were almost there, I reached down to feel my wallet in my pocket. To my horror, it wasn’t there. I felt as you are probably feeling as you read this. I was terrified. I had everything in there. I was completely lost not knowing what to do. Everyone felt bad for me, and we tried to retrace our steps as we walked to the field. When we got playing, I prayed in my heart like never before. To my complete amazement, I heard shouting from the other side of the field. I looked up and they were saying YOUR WALLET! MILAGRO! I couldn’t believe what I was seeing. Apparently some guy had walked up and just given it to us. I have no idea how or why it happened. But I testify that Heavenly Father Is a God of miracles. He is so present in our lives. When we need help, He can give it, no matter how impossible it seems. I know he lives and watches us. He is our Heavenly Father. 

Too many times this week impossible things have happened. I testify that miracles are real. No matter the impossibilities, or the doubts that are present. ANYTHING is possible when our Heavenly Father helps us. Even when we think Heavenly Father has helped us too much for another miracle to happen, think again. I testify of specific prayers, they work. When we need help in something specifically, He is there to help us in greater detail. He is always there. I’m forever in my Father in Heavens debt, in my saviors debt as well. I love them and all that they do for me.

Thank you for all your love and support. My heart is so full this morning. I love you all more than you understand. Until next week! 

Elder Ethan Haws