Friday, November 14, 2014

Nov 14, 2014

Hey Family.

It's that time of the again to write an email about this past week in the mission. The main activity this week was zone 
conference in A Coruña yesterday. We drove up Tuesday with the sisters and spent a fun afternoon at a huge mall. We mostly had lunch and then frozen yogurt and walked around. We don't have any amazing malls in Vigo so it's fun to go to see a really big mall. There was a bowling area, go cart racing, carousel, video games, tons of restaurants and stores. We checked the sisters into their hotel and then went to ours to rest until the devotional at 8. President, Sister Jackson, and the assistants were driving in from Oviedo where they had a zone conference there that day and didn't arrive until around 7:30. The zone leaders planned the devotional and had gone to a lot of work to have a meaningful experience. The messages were about the Savior and his atonement, then role playing about repentance, baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost. Our meeting started Wed morning at 9 and ended at 1 and then we ate pizza and left for Vigo along with Pres. and Sister Jackson and the assistants who flew back to Madrid. Most of the Elders that were headed south had to wait for a 5 o'clock train to get back to their various cities. Sister Jackson talked about listening and the importance it plays as the investigators are being taught the gospel. She emphasized the need for silence and letting the Spirit work during the silent times. President Jackson gave a 10 minute instruction about leading music. The poor missionary who was asked to lead the music was so awkward and nervous that Pres. decided right then to give an impromptu course. He handled it very tactfully and the missionary was a good sport about it. We are constantly teaching our JAS how to lead music and giving them practice time to get comfortable doing it. Always a good skill to know. President Jackson also talked about the importance of teaching about the apostasy in more depth so investigators will understand the need for a restoration. He said there are 70 scriptures in the Bible that talk about the apostasy.

We got home and collapsed until english class and FHE. Larry and I are teaching the advanced conversational class now and we have about 3 students. It takes some planning to come with ideas to make the class interesting, fun, and give everyone a chance to talk as much as possible. Luckily there are lots of online sights that help us with ideas. 

Last Friday we had a chance to go again with  the sisters to teach the Portuguese lady from the cruise ship that lives in a tiny town about 30 minutes from Vigo. She lives there with her partner of some years and his two kids. The kids however don't like country living so they have apts. in Vigo. She is sincerely looking for something and knows that she shouldn't be living together with a man outside of marriage because she has mentioned it a couple of times to us. He won't marry her because it would affect their income. (must be taxes or govt. subsidies) They have a really great house and it is filled with lots of items indicative of their various talents. He draws she sews to name a couple of things. He wants nothing to do with the missionaries or religion but is fine if she wants to explore different religions. She invited us to return and said she would pray.

Sunday we were invited to dinner along with the sisters and elders to have dinner with a Brazilian member in the branch. I had always assumed she was single and childless because she was always alone at church. We found out she has a husband in Brazil and two grown children and they have been sealed as a family. The kids when they turned 18 told their parents they were done with the church for a while but they would come back someday. They are JAS age and live here in Vigo with their mom. We met them for the first time at dinner. We didn't know they existed until a couple of weeks ago. They are really personable young adults and we had a great time talking to them and getting to know them. The elders told them about our JAS activities and the son said he might start coming. The daughter didn't say much but she was so friendly and talked freely about the gospel. They would be such a wonderful addition to our group plus they need the gospel back in their lives and sooner rather than later.

Sunday was branch conference and our little chapel was filled to capacity along with the Primary overflow room. We need a bigger building. They have land for a building but problems with various neighbors in the area where the sight is located. We had a great meeting. Our branch President, President Rey, gave such a good talk about the progress the branch has made and areas where improvement is needed. Then the district president, President Bamio, spoke and I honestly don't remember much about his talk. But that is my problem not an indicator of the value of what he said.

The institute teacher was sick Sunday so she asked Larry to substitute for her. He did a great job talking about the challenges the Lord gives us in our lives and how we respond is the key to if we progress in this life and go on to live our lives dedicated to the service of the Lord. He was a bit nervous which is unusual for your dad.

Monday I made a meal for the institute teacher and her family and went to her house to take the food and visit for a bit. She is such a good teacher and I love talking to her. He youngest son was born the day after Griffin so I am always interested to see him and what he is doing. He is a darling little boy with a mop of black hair. I asked her if he'd lost any hair since he was born (like most babies do) and she said yes because he has had two haircuts. That is one way to look at it.

Well the sisters are coming over in a few minutes to burn a CD so I'll say goodbye for now. Take care. We love you all!

Mom and Dad

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