Saturday, May 31, 2014

I might move to Villa 31 after the mission (Sent: April 14, 2014)

¿Qué tal familia?

Another week in the Villa. Oh man, I wish I could take pictures so you can see this place. It´s so incredible. I think I might just move here after the mission. Haha, no that´s a lie. But at the end of every day, Elder Critchlow and I talk on the way out about how great of an opportunity it is to work inside. So few people get the chance to see such a cool place. Even though we haven´t had as much numerical success as we´ve expected, this has been one of my favorite transfers of the mission.

Like I´ve mentioned before, there´s a lot of other missionaries from other churches being in such a crowded area. So at the beginning one day while we´re walking to our part of the Villa, one guy calls out ¨Hey! Do you guys believe in Faith?¨ We replied that of course we do. He started to tell us that he researched our Church and knows all about it. He proudly declared that he believes in the ¨Faith of Abraham¨ and insisted that we believe in the ¨Faith of Shirtland¨. ... We kept asking him who ¨Shirtland¨ is, and he just became frustrated. Finally he said, ¨well look, I´m drunk right now, but I guess we´ll see in the end who´s right.¨ Then he walked off. So there´s my experience with talking to a drunk Pharisee that believes only that the children of Abraham will be saved.

Our investigator pool is unusually slow for a villa. It´s not really uncommon for people to have problems with the Law of Chastity or Word of Wisdom, but unfortunately for us, all of the people who have the greatest desire to be baptized have these kinds of problems. They have to wait months to get married because of the strange laws in the Argentine government, so it´s a bit tricky sometimes. But one of these investigators is incredible. She and her daughter are extremely receptive and so we´re continuing to teach them while we pray that their situation will change.

The other day, she asked a question about the ¨five things that we can´t eat¨ that a loud member (bless his heart) blurted out in the middle of a prior lesson. So we pulled out the pamphlet on the Word of Wisdom, and before we even really said anything, she looked at the front page and said ¨okay, so I´ve got to stop drinking tea, and coffee. I´m good with the other things.¨ I was kind of caught off guard by how willing she was, and almost said, ¨well yeah! Great! So that´s the Word of Wisdom,¨ and move on. Haha she has so much faith it blows me away. I pray that her boyfriend will follow her example so that they can be baptized as a family and experience these blessings together for eternity.

This Sunday, she and her family came to Church. The little four-year old is a stud, but when he sees us, just goes nuts. One day we were walking down the street, and he dropped a hacky-sack that a dog grabbed. So Elder Critchlow took it out of the dogs mouth and tossed it to him and he happily screamed ¨¡Qué valiente que sos!¨ (How valient you are!) Haha, que capo. But during lessons and sundays, he is incredibly irreverant. I think his poor mom gets embarrassed of him and leaves right after the Sacrament meeting. I had the thought to describe to her that she has no need to worry, that little children are the glory of God. Really, He doesn´t mind that her four-year old is a little of the walls, because He´s just so happy that their within the walls of the chapel on that Sunday. That they´re accepting His Gospel. That they´re trying their best to improve. They´re incredible, and they´re going to be blessed in this Gospel. I´m excited to keep working with them, and have faith that Heavenly Father will help them overcome their mountain of struggles.

I love you all. Thanks for your continued support! I´m praying for each one of you every day.

¡Hurrah por Israel!

-Élder Goff

Okay we found an internet cafe that´s ridiculously expensive, but it lets us send pictures. So here´s a whole bunch.

1. Happy Hump Day Elder Critchlow!

2. So there´s this gigantic building- palace really. It looks super cool, and when we found out it was a museum we were super excited because of the awesome gun museum we went to recently. It turns out that it was a museum on Water and the Sanitary History. Basically a giant palace built for plumbers. What a bummer. (No pun intended. Okay maybe a little bit.)

3. We were going through our Emergency Box to see if anything had expired. The rule is that if it´s expired but still edible, you can eat it and replace it. We were starving that morning, and were thrilled to find out that the granola bars had expired a week or so earlier. Woo!

4. President asked me and Elder Zollinger to take over the grill at the BBQ that he threw for the two nearest zones.

5. There´s probably the best picture you´ll get from me of the Villa. It´s from the train, so it´s a terribly out of focus, and you have to stare at the sketchy backside. Sorry, it´s a whole lot cooler inside, but I´m never taking out my camera in the streets.

6. Elder Critchlow shot a basket while jumping on the President´s trampoline, and made it!

7. Don´t worry. Despite how this picture looks, we work hard during the week. :)

8. Pretty much all of our investigators are references from this guy. Hermano Gimenez is such a stud!

9. This is our ¨Elder Indiana Jones¨ picture. :)

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