Monday, August 29, 2011

Week 30 - WE WON! (two emails in one day)

Hello one and all,
Thank you for all the birthday wishes! Time just seems to fly by all the time, it´s a little scary. We had a zone conference this week and it was really really good, I loved it! We played a game and what ever district won they get to have a special p-day.... WE WON! I am way excited because now I will email in Concordia next week. They have better computers so I can send all my pictures :)

This week we taught some great people, a family that we gave a Book of Mormon to said that they really like it and when the mother said the prayer when we were leaving she prayed that they could be baptized! Now it is in our hands to prepare them. I hope everything will go smoothly with them. We started handing out invitations for an English class we are going to have every week in the church. Everyone is really excited about it. It is nice because now when people yell at me in the street in English and say "hey! What´s your name? 12347689" I can go ask them if they actually want to learn English.

I taught the class in church on Sunday and I spoke on faith. Many members shared great experiences :) I talked about how we need to be like Peter who walked out on the waves to the Savior. We need to have faith and courage to get out of the boat.

I will write more next week I hope you all have a wonderful week :)
Love, Elder Smart

E-mail #2

So I walked back to my pench and I saw that there is a new cyber opened . So we decided to try it out for pictures and wow it is pretty fast!! :) I hope you like the pictures.

A story that I forgot to tell you is that we had a lunch appointment which is really rare in the little city. We arrived there and the man who was one of our investigators was completely drunk. His wife came in from the kitchen to greet us and I looked at her left hand and it was cut really really bad. Dripping in fact all over the floor leaving a trail....we asked her if she wanted a band aid but she said it was nothing. (she was drunk also) We sat down and talked to the man for a while and his wife brought out sandwiches, I pretended to eat and when they weren´t watching I threw the food out to the dog. My companion put his sandwich that had blood on it in his bag. We found away to get out of there and went home and made PB & J´s, which have never tasted so good!

Another story is yesterday we arrived at a lesson 5 minutes later than we planned because we were clapping doors. (people clap at the front of houses instead of doorbells) When we arrived at the house the investigator told us that a new kid who is 14 years old had just tried to stab her. He was drunk and if we would of been there she said it would of been crazy. I am glad we were late and not there.

On a happier note. . . . In the conference I forgot to write and tell you that I met Elder Beckstead, whose grandparents (Neil and Lee Beckstead) live in my ward. There is a picture of him and me in the pictures I am sending. 
Well goodbye again and have a great week!
Love, Elder Smart 

Is it safe to cook on a space heater? I don't think so!!!
Elder Beckstead and Elder Smart (Neil and Lee Beckstead's grandson)
Elder Smart
Elder Smart and his district
P-day basketball

Monday, August 22, 2011

Week 29 - a cappella

Hello this week has been just full of lessons which I love :) because it is cold outside haha. But in a lesson we stood up to leave from our investigators house and he just started crying. He gave me a big old hug! It was nice. He also talked to us about how as he was reading the Book of Mormon. He read about missionaries and it clicked to him that we are here so far from home to help people just like him. He said that what we are doing is very important to him and he thanked us. It was one of our member friends birthday and he is not exactly the most wealthiest and he has a big family. So Elder Gabriella and I went and gave him a soccer ball and oh my goodness he was happy!! It was just a great feeling :)

And another experience that happened yesterday is that I had to direct the music in church just like I always do ever since Elder Black left, and in church there was only 9 people and the president wasn’t there so
we didn't have a radio to play the CDs. Well we sang a cappella.....needless to say it was me in front of everyone singing a solo more or less haha I will never ever forget it.

I will write more next week I promise and I hope all of you who are starting school enjoy it ha ;)
Con amor Elder Smart

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Week 28 - Another transfer in Federal

Hello everyone!
I Just found out that I am staying here in Federal....again.. I like it here but I am just wanting a change of scenery because I have knocked every street here. Oh well, there is a reason why I am here.

This week we went to Concordia for a district meeting and then returned to Federal. The very next morning we received a phone call telling us to go to the mission home for my companion to do his paperwork. So we ran out and canceled our appointments for those few days that we would be gone and took off for the 10 hour bus ride to Rosario.

While there I received a package from my loving mother. Thanx for the PMG MINI, everyone was way jealous. It is in color which is amazing because I have only ever seen it in black and white. It is the best gift you can give a missionary.(thanx) Also I was there at a good time because I got to eat pizza with President Giuliani and the other Elders in the mission office. It was cool. We spent the night at the mission home and then left the next morning for the 10 hour ride back home. It was pretty hectic having to pick up and leave to Rosario but it was OK. In a terminal I contacted 3 kids who have 20 years and are from England. It was really sweet.

I just received some horrifying news that I am going to have to stand next to president Giuliani's wife and translate here talk from English to Spanish at a zone conference next
week . yikes... pray for me.

My companion said our pench is the worst living conditions he has been in since being on his mission. We are basically camping, but I am used to it by now.

Thanx for all the support.
Elder Smart

Monday, August 8, 2011

Week 27 - 6 Months

Hola familia y amigos!
I hope that all is well in the states. Here in Federal things are good! This week we found alot of new people to teach and one man that we found is great from the moment we were in his house. He said he wanted to turn his life around. He is reading the Book of Mormon and is very sincere with everything he says. When ever we leave he thanks us and begins to cry, the spirit is always so strong with him. I love teaching him. It is amazing to see how the gospel fits in perfectly with peoples lives like a missing puzzle piece.

We went to one of our part member families and when we got there we could tell that the husband who isn´t a member didn´t really want us to be there that night for what ever reason. Then we had a great activity with them where we told the whole family we were going to go on a trip to where ever they wanted to go. They chose places like Utah, Hawaii, and of course Las Vegas ha ha. Well we said that we are all on the plane heading to where they wanted to go when all of a sudden the plane starts to have difficulties and we are going to crash. We hand out pieces of paper and tell them to write their last words to who ever they want. They had 5 minutes to do so and then they folded there papers in half and handed them into us, and we put them in a box. We then explained that some how the box opened up and all the papers got destroyed. My companion tore all the papers up!! They all said they felt said that they couldn´t say what they wanted to there families.

We told them that we can´t put things off in this life because we don´t know what will happen. Then my companion gave them back their papers to them because we didn´t really rip them up. We invited them to read and many of them cried doing so. I then bore my testimony and I used James 4:14 "Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow For what is your life It is even a vapor that appeareth for a little time and then vanisheth." At the end of the lesson the wife asked her spouse who he wanted to pray and he said "Vos mi amor?" and she said "Si mi vida" Sorry I had to describe it in Spanish because it is just so much cooler ;)

When we left the spirit was so strong there.The next day at church the hermana bore her testimony of the experience and said after we left they sat around the table and spoke just like an eternal family. When usually on a Saturday night they are off doing separate things. It was a great experience to be apart of. It is amazing that I have been gone for 6 months already. I love my mission and every experience I have had, the difficult ones and dangerous ones too ;)

I want to end with a quote by mother Theresa. Hope you like it!
Love, Elder Smart

People are often unreasonable, Illogical, and self-centered; Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, People may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives; Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, You will win some false friends and some true enemies; Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and frank, People may cheat you; Be honest and frank anyway.
What you spend years building, Someone could destroy overnight; Build anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, They may be jealous; Be happy anyway.
The good you do today, People will often forget tomorrow; Do good anyway.
Give the world the best you have, And it may never be enough; Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.
You see, in the final analysis, It is between you and God; It never was between you and them anyway.
– Mother Theresa

Monday, August 1, 2011

Week 26 - The Testament with thirty kids!

 This week in Federal we did divisions and I was with an Elder from Chile who is awesome. On the way with him back from Concordia to Federal we were just sitting on the bus and we had just gotten on the freeway when all of a sudden CRACK CRACK! We were sitting toward the back of the bus but we found out that someone had thrown two rocks the size of my fist at the bus and shattered the two huge windows in the front right size of the bus! They card boarded it up and we were on our way. haha Then the next morning we were studying when it sounded like someone was throwing rocks at the house and then it got louder! We went and checked the window and went outside and hail the size of quarters was coming down. It was so funny to see all the animals running around for cover. haha

We went and found some great new people to teach it was a really a spiritual day. Three people during three different lessons cried during the message we gave. People all have there different problems but they all find one common remedy in our savior and Father in heaven. It is amazing to be one of these people to deliver the good news that people search for.

We had an activity in the rama. (Ward) We watched The Testament with 30 little kids we invited from the neighborhood. It was chaotic but really good also. Then on Sunday I taught the priesthood lesson about keeping the Sabbath day holy and how our Savior has prepared the sacrament for us and I compared it to how our mothers make meals for us and how they feel when we don´t show up ;)

A member in our rama told us her conversion story and what happened. When she was working at a building rental office a coworker told her there was an Elder at the church who looked just like Leonardo DiCaprio from The Titanic, so all twelve of them went to church to see him. She liked the ward but didn´t get to see the missionary because he got transferred. The ward invited her in though with open arms and now I would say she has one of the strongest testimonies in the rama. So always keep an eye out at your wards    because you never know what will happen with one of the people you choose to befriend :)

Thanx for all the love and support!
Con amor Elder Smart