Well it has been as pretty exciting and amazing week!
This Wednesday Elder Jorge Zaballos of the area 70 here came and we had a really good conference. He talked about learning the language for your whole life and setting higher goals for ourselves and the importance of love in the work. It was really good and motivated everyone a lot. But the best part of the meeting is that I talked with Elder Muñoz and the other missionaries who are in Oberá and the familia Amarillo got baptized! And also the Torres family was reactivated and the 9 year old son got baptized! I was so happy when they told me! And I am so excited for those families and for Oberá cause it is continuing to grow! It was way cool!
Also, la familia Ventura is getting married this Friday, baptized this Saturday, and confirmed on Sunday! It is going to be a super crazy week for them but they are so happy and are always just talking about how much their lives have changed and how much they love everything. They have so much faith and are really an awesome example to me of how I need to be more excited and ready to learn about the gospel. They are already talking about going to the temple and it is possible that in a year if everything goes well that I might be able to go with them. I can´t think of anything more amazing for a missionary than to be at the sealing of a family! I really love this family so much and I am so happy for them and so excited for their baptism!
We are also working a lot better with the branch. We had a meeting with the ward mission leader Chunchu (he was basically the city drunk before, but totally changed his life and got baptized) and the Branch President Sandoval (whose dad was the first person to be baptized in Puerto Rico). It went way good! President Sandoval is a bit difficult to work with at times but we finally are helping him to see that we as missionaries are here to help him build the branch. It is one church, not the church of the members and the church of the missionaries separated. We convinced him to let us start a gospel principles class and we are planning an activity and we now have a branch mission plan! We presented it to the branch counsel on Sunday, and to be honest there was some contention between some of the members about certain things (there is a lot of past here) but we just started talking to them about what we wanted to accomplish and working together and the vision for this area. There were some tears and a little contention but in the end we all knelt together and offered a prayer and we are now definitely headed in the right direction.
Also, the other day Elder Meniz and I were talking and I was kind of complaining about the sister missionaries in the district because they just have no desire to work and that I kind of hope they leave this change and he told me that I need to humble myself and not let my ego get elevated. At first I was kind of mad and wanted to argue with him and tell him that I wasn´t doing anything wrong, but then the Spirit told me to listen. So I did. And I am glad I did because I realized that any success I have is not mine. I thought of Alma 26:27 that says "I (the Lord) will give unto success." I am very glad that he told em that because I think it helped me to avoid a lot of trouble and pain down the road. I just need to always remember that the success is not mine. It is the Lord´s. And I am not out here so I can feel good about myself and the things I can accomplish. I am out here so that the Lord can bless the lives of people like the Familia Ventura who will have the chance to become an eternal family. And that is why I am here. That is what it is all about.
I love Puerto Rico, I love the people, I love being a missionary, I love all of you and above all else I love the Lord.
Con amor, Elder Hawk
"A toucan head we found in the street. A member is going to clean it up and feed the head to his dog and give me the beak!!! I am pretty pumped for that!"
"The airplanes that Danielle sent for Christmas are a big hit with the kids"