Monday, February 29, 2016

First Baptism, Amazing Experience

Hello hello hello everybody!!!!!! 
So, this week was a tough one having to lead the area and show where everything is, but it's all good because....... We had my first baptism!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
The whole thing was really good, it was really exciting to see Christopher make it to this step in the Gospel. Earlier in the week it was pretty tough, we really need to find new people to teach, which we are working on a whole lot. A lot of appointments fell through, I don't like it when that happens but sometimes it happens a lot. But Saturday and Sunday were both amazing!!!!! That day were visiting people by his house, inviting a bunch of people to come to his baptism. When we passed by Christopher was there and said that he wanted to come with us to visit people, so we asked our leaders for permission and he got to come along! It was a little bit hectic, but cool to get to go around with him before hand. The actual baptismal service was pretty darn stressful, Leonardo that was going to baptize Christopher showed up late, didn't have a change of clothes for after, and a lot of other stressfull stuff happened. BUT none of that mattered because the coolest part in the whole world was when my companion Elder Melendez and I got to be the witnesses to the baptism to make sure all the stuff was done correctly. In that moment, it is indescribable the joy and love and happiness that I felt for this guy of 12 years old get baptized by his cousin. Leo performed the baptism perfectly and it was the flippin coolest thing ever. It is and experience that I will definalty NEVER forget. 
Sunday, since Leonardo did the baptism that meant someone else had to do the confirming and guess what......... that person was ME!!!!! I was so so so SO nervous, but it was a really cool experience, I confirmed him a member and everything IN SPANISH!!!!! It was an amazing thing, I'm  so grateful for the gift of tongues--LIFE SAVER! 
In our gospels principles class this same day, the subject was prayer, and how we recieve the answers to our prayers. We were broken up into groups, sharing our ideas and then after, each group got to share in front of the class. One of the Sisters shared a story that I will never be able to forget. She shared how one day she was in the hospital with her aunt, going crazy with stress and sadness because her aunt was dying of cancer. She had no idea what to do, and prayed to our Father in Heaven that she might not be alone and that she might recieve some support. That's when she looked at me and talked about how in this dire moment of need, she could see Elder Justiniano and I pass by the entrance of the hospital on our way to our area. And in that moment she said that we accompanied her in that time of crisis, that we had answered her prayers and that she could feel comfort. As she saw us she could feel her prayer being answered, and that we were with her just from passing by. She thanked us for our service and for being there when she was in need.
I had no idea that this had happened untill she shared her experience with the whole class. I was absolutly astounded, and will never be able to forget how she looked at me and told this story of how when we didnt even know it, we were able to bring comfort and peace just by passing by. 
In my time here in Girardot, I have passed by that entrance of the hospital hundreds of times, and each time it is a struggle, because we have to climb up a very steep incline to the top of the hill to pass by the hospital and get to our area. Many times I felt very tired physically and to be honest sometimes I didn't want to do it. But I will never, ever, regret it. 
We have an unbelievable abilitly to impact those who surround us each day, when we carry the light of Christ, we can bring support and help to others when we don't even know they need it. Always, always, be worthy to share that light, to share that love, that others will need. I have a testimony, that you will never know when someone is going to need it. 
So very amazing these two days, and yes, I have been keeping a journal and I haven't missed a day :D I love the gospel, it is the best thing ever.
I don't have access to papa's blog, I'll have to ask him, that sounds like what we eat everyday!!!! No just kidding XD
The time goes so fast, can't wait to keep having life changing experiences on the mission!!!!!


Elder Kendall

Here is Christopher in the middle, he was baptized by his cousin Leonardo!!!

Monday, February 22, 2016

Big Transfers and Liver, an interesting week

Hey hey everybody!!!!!!! 

Alright, so transfers happened, and it was pretty crazy. I staying here in Girardot for another transfer! We pretty much new before the transfer call on Sunday that my companion was going to go, but what we didn't expect was a call he got Friday night. One of the AP´s called and told him he´s going to Leticia!!!!! So he had to leave Saturday at 5, and I was with my district leader and his companion until today. Super crazy, he left for Leticia and I was here waiting to know who is my new companion. He got here today, his name is Elder Melendez, and he´s from Peru! He seems pretty cool, and this transfer is for 8 weeks so were going to have lots of time to talk.  He's got about 9 months, not to much more than me. What's crazy is that by the end of this transfer I'm going to have 7 months in the mission........ LIKE WHAT!!!!!
We have been teaching Christopher, and he came to church this past Sunday so we are all ready for his baptism this Saturday!!!! All he needs is to have his interview and to make sure all is ready, and it should be a good day! His cousin Leonardo our recently-reactivated member is having an interview to baptize him too, its going to be pretty darn legit. 
We have some pretty promising people as well, although Jaime stopped meeting with us, he didn't like how different church was and how everybody talked so much about D&C and all these different books and that he just wanted to continue in his church where his wife goes. Also she influenced him in that to, she didn't like us all that much. It was pretty sad, me and my comp both felt that he knew that the Book of Mormon is true, and that the church was as well, but just couldn't take that step. Hopefully in the future he will be ready. 
It has been raining here a whole lot, which is pretty weird, I actually woke up this morning a little cold, which never ever happens here. 
Oh yeah, and guess what I ate for lunch Tuesday...... LIVER!!!!!! When we got to lunch they put the plate and I thought "oh yeah, it's the same meat as always," but then I cut it, and it was kinda weird, and then I tasted it, and it was really weird!! I couldn't finish eating it, which was hard but it just wasn't good. Then afterwards I learned it was liver and I thought "Ah, yup that makes more sense." Not my favorite food XD 
It has been a good amount of work here in Girardot, but we are finding a lot of promising people and it is a lot of fun. I really do love being a missionary!   I'm really happy and enjoying the mission. Going to be showing the area to my new companion, it is going to be fun. I LOVE BEING ON A BIKE!!! I dont think I can go back haha.
All of my love, 
Elder Kendall

Look what I found!!

Monday, February 15, 2016

Good week, Had an Interview with President Baquerizo


This week was pretty sweet, we had a ton of good work this week with finding new investigators and we taught a ton of lessons!!! It's hot like normal, but sometimes it has been raining at night, which is kinda crazy. 
There's one guy we are teaching who we contacted in front of his house, and he came to church yesterday!!! His name is Jaime and he is super good. He told us that he ran from work to get over to the church, has been reading the Book of Mormon and really likes what we have been teaching him. Today we have an appointment with him where we are going to talk about the word of wisdom. He has a ton of faith and is really progressing. He has a baptism date for the 5th of March.
We should be having a ton of good things happening in the coming weeks, and it is going to be different because the next transfer is going to be for eight weeks instead of six. They are changing the time the Latinos stay in the CCM to three weeks instead of two, and that's why this next transfer will be longer. This Sunday is when we will know the changes and it's pretty much 100% that my companion is going to leave and I will get another one. He has been here a long time so he is excited to experience something new. 
On Wednesday, I got to have an interview with President Baquerizo, he came to Girardot and taught us some stuff and afterward we had interviews! It was super awesome, he is an amazing guy. We have applied a lot of what he has told us and it is for that reason that we had such an awesome week. It was cool to get to talk to him and to have the opportunity to ask questions. We had to miss lunch to be at the interview with President, so he took me and my companion and the Zone Leaders out to lunch at a place called the Corral. Its pretty much the closest thing to American hamburgers that they have here in Colombia. It was a lot of fun to go to lunch with President and talk about his mission and other stuff. 
My stomach is fine, so don't worry :D 

I love all the pictures and love you guys!!!!!!

LOVE YOU!!!!!!

Elder Kendall

PS - So I forgot to tell you, with my companion I learned what was the reason that I have been put with him. It is so that I can learn patience. Something that helped me this week was that I put it into these terms ``I got a big bowl of patience soup, and I've got to eat it all'' So that has been helping me out, I have been able to change my attitude. It isn't super easy, I'm still workin on that soup, but we're gettin there. 
Also, woke up yesterday with some sort of head cold, and by the time we were heading home I was so tired that I started singin ''I Want a Hippopatamus for Christmas!!!'' out loud to myself.  Thought that was pretty funny.  Once I repeated this song about a thousand times, I started it up with Nelli the Elephant, so just some quality stuff XD

Monday, February 8, 2016

5 months in Colombia, 5 Months of Goodness

I don't know how the time has been passing so quickly, it's like we just get started with our studies in the morning and then I blink and we´re already shutting off the lights and turning on the fans to head to sleep..... SUPER RAPIDO! 
I have no words to say on the Broncos winning the Super Bowl except, lamesauce time 10.
But wow good for the Panthers having a season like that. I MISS FOOTBALL!!!!!!!!!
This week I was still having problems with my stomach and so I wasn't able to work for a few days because I was always in and out of the bathroom as soon as I ate anything. But I was able to go to the doctors and he was super chill, checked my stomach for about 20 seconds and then told me to take this medicine and that was it. So, I've been doing that and right now I feel a whole lot better, and we´re working like normal. 
I wasn't able to visit Jorge this week for my stomach and he didn't show up to church this week.... Kinda dissapointing, we will have to push his baptism date back to March. But the last time we talked to him he was still willing to change and as long as he continues in this path toward baptism it's all good in the hood!!!! 
We have been working with some of the less active members and recent converts to ask for them to present us to people to teach, and it has been working really nice! Right now we are teaching Christopher which is the cousin of the guy that we just recently activated that I sent a photo of. He is 13 years old and has come to church twice already, and we are teaching him the lessons, he is going to be baptized on the 20th of February!!!! We are working to have Leonardo, his cousin, to baptize him, its going to be an awesome experience. 
Another family that we have been working with called the Herrera Family are doing good as well, my companion Elder Justiniano and his previous companion started meeting with them and they really love the missionaries and the Church!! There are the parents, Janner and Leidy, they have 2 kids, but only one of them is the son of both of them, his name is Dylan. The other is a son of only Leidy and is named Brian. They arent married, which is what we´re working on, the brother Janner already has a strong testimony of the Book of Mormon and knows that the church is true, he is amazing!! Leidy is who we are working with more, because until recently she didnt want to get married and so they couldn't progress and be baptized. But, we went there on Saturday to kinda give them a Lesson of YOU NEED TO CHOOSE NOW!!! but when we got there Janner told us that Leidy had a change of heart and while talking to one of the members said that she wants to get married!!! SUPER EXCITING!!!! This is really the only thing holding them back from baptism. The only problem is is that they want to get married in about 3 or 4 months, which is really far away but we are working with that.
I have been using my calender, its flippin awesome!!! I love all the super cheesy jokes.
It's hard here but we are working and we have some promising things to come in these next few weeks. Also in 2 weeks its already the transfers again, super fast.
I had a dream about football and Coach Cristiansen giving one of his awesome pep talk things and other football stuff that I dont remember, but it was awesome!! 
Lots of love for Coach Ken!!!!! Tell him that he knows I probably be dying if I played rugby! HAHA
HURRAH FOR ISRAEL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Elder Kendall


Tuesday, February 2, 2016

Helping people move is the best!

It's weird to think you guys are getting piled in with snow, it is weird to me that there is snow!! 

There was a lot of good stuff and a few challenging things this week. But the time is flying super fast!!! I cant believe that I nearly have 5 months in the mission! Pretty soon I'm going to get to unrap my second 6th month period tooth brush that I got here! The last time I went to the dentist Tyler's mom gave me 4 tooth brushes for each 6 months of my mission, so that is a pretty fun way to track the time. 
We have been working the first part of the week with contacting again, we have also got some good references from the Hermanas in our zone that live in our area that we are going to start to teach. We have talked and learned a lot about how the best way to find people who will be baptized is through the members, Less actives, and the Recent converts. So we are starting with that more and we have some promising stuff to look forward to this month of February. 
Jorge is doing good, we have been teaching him and he loves coming to church and learning more about the church. He always tells us how he never had this opportunity before and he is willing to change to be able to continue forward. He is awesome!! He really understands repentance and wants to change his life. The only problem that he has right now is that he can only attend church every other week for his work. He has a work companion and they change who works Sundays each week. So one week he works and one week he doesn't. So we are working to see if we can get him to change his work or ask his boss or his work companion if they can figure something out so that he can attend each week. 
We also have a young kid that we are teaching whose name is Christopher. He is the cousin of a less active that we have just recently rescued, and he is preparing to be baptized as well! He has 13 years old and he has been having a little trouble obeying his mom, but we are working on that and as he is learning I think he is starting to change as well.
Our Zone leaders had a baptism this weekend that was really cool, it was a couple that have been taking the lessons for about 6 months but couldnt be baptized because they were'nt married. This is honestly the problem that 90% of the investigatores here have. But on Friday, we were able to attend their wedding!!!! It was so cool to see these guys get married so they could finally be baptized. The next day, Saturday, after lunch I got pretty bad diarrhea  and so I wasn't able to go out and work because I was in and out of the bathroom a lot. But, we were able to make it to the baptism of this family that got married, and it was amazing!!! So cool to see them able to recieve this wonderful ordinance. I still have had bad diarrhea Sunday so we weren't able to work yesterday either which was a little hard. I'm still getting better but now my stomach is better. 

If I can be totally honest, the food is a pretty big challenge for me. Each day at lunch its a little bit like a chore, and if I'm not saying the prayer to bless the food I'm praying like this in my mind" Please Lord help me eat this food!!!!!" over and over and over again. But the Lord has been with me and I have been able to eat some things that you would never have seen me eat in a million years. They like salad here. But when I say salad its not really like the type of salad over there. It's more like pure things of avacado, onions and tomatoes and that's the salad. But like I said I'm working through it with God's help. 
Really a good week but a little challenging with not being able to go out to work all the days. But I feel the Savior's love for me more and more every day!!!!!

TE QUIERO MUCHO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Elder Kendall