Monday, September 26, 2011

A good missionary birthday for sure

Wow Brandyn's got the beardy look now, that’s a bit new...for me at least. Sorry bro I can’t grow a beard to match ya...
I’m 21!!
It was an incredible day, we didn’t get a ton of diner but that’s not what matters... we woke up at 6:30 as always and got out of the house at 7ish to get everything ready for the baptism of Brian and Steicy Morales (Wily´s date has gone back to the 8th, but really whatever day they want to be married) and it was good we did, we were busy! The water from the fount came out all nasty green! We finally decided that we would have to empty it and fill it again to see if it would clear up. We then left to help B&S´s mom prepare for the refreshments, pupusas! (Kinda like tortillas but filled on the inside with pizza cheese and beans and some meat) YUM lots to do, then to look for our appointments to teach. A busy but fulfilling day for sure. The fount filled up again, but still green! O well we did it anyway and everything was great. For lunch I called for pizza, Dominos had this special New York style pizza that was pretty tasty, and came with a coke that we couldn’t drink. We gave that away to some neighbors. All in all we came back to the house satisfied. A good missionary birthday for sure.

Today was pretty eventful too; we went to semuc champey again! Btw I found out that semuc chamey is Kekchi for ¨the river that hides under the earth¨ cool huh? The rides in the buses weren’t as fun but nothing big to complain about, all fun goodliness.

This week is GENERAL CONFERENCE!! Who’s exited? I am! And guess what...

It’s my last one here

The next after that I will be recently home and comfy to see it heheh. It’s going to be great.

No letters or packages yet but really I don’t mind not receiving them, the finish line is close (not to sound baggy). I’m kinda short on what to say this week, it’s been pretty normal, all goes well in the area lots of new and really good investigators. We just barely got off the bus from semuc champey and that’s why we are writing so late.

I’m so sorry for not having much to say but my mind seems a bit scrambled right now with the rush to get back to our area, buy food still, write emails and get to important appointments! I love you all so much and I hope to write you guys a bigger better email next week, take care!

Elder Andrew James Bronson

Monday, September 19, 2011

A wedding birthday baptism with lots of pizza

Sounds fun that you guys are having some good weather; here it’s been pretty rainy, lots of umbrella use. It’s been a really good week for the work, lots of young men left with us to our teaching appointments and we had tons of lessons with members present. two of our investigators had plans to be baptized the 3th, but wouldn’t have been able to be confirmed until the 9th of October, so with a little help we were able to move the date up to....THE 24TH OF SEPTEMBER baptism birthday! Wily also has plans to be baptized the 24th but he needs his legal papers before he can be baptized so we will see if he can pull that off. A wedding birthday baptism with lots of pizza.

Last Saturday was fun also, the sister missionaries in our ward had a baptism, and being sisters they can’t perform it. The boy, Sergio, wanted me to do it, so I did! The pictures I’m sending are from the baptism. He’s such a funny kid to haha the life of the party, I was just happy to be able to do the baptism; it was my first for quite some time...                                                                         

As for letters and things for my birthday I haven’t received anything but mail comes a little late here, I’ll keep my hopes up that something comes through, but it’s not such a big deal, mail is so few and far between (something natural for the mission) that I don’t worry about it. Haha this week I’m going to be 21!! Mom, your boy is 21 years old, oy I should just go buy myself a walker and retire. I hope the party at home goes well; I’m not going to ask you to save me a slice I might just buy myself something here.

Sorry guys but I’m not sure what more to write about today, last week was good but not incredibly eventful. One story came to mind:

Yesterday our last lesson was a family we contacted, a reference from their neighbor who is an investigator herself. It was really dark, only by candle we talked. We came into the house and started talking with just the wife and her 2 little kids, someone in the background was praying/weeping creepily, I already could imagine what kind of alter might possibly be stationed in that room...ugh. Well we start talking with the mother about eternal families; how she can see her kids forever even after death. Next the father came in; he was the one praying in the other room. He sat down and asked us kindly what our purpose was in visiting. I responded that we are missionaries from the church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. ¨oh, the Mormons.¨ he replied, I’ve heard about you wives right? I don’t believe that’s good, I don’t want that, I’m not really interested.¨ We continued to teach about how the family was about one father and one mother, married for eternity but I’m not sure that he really understood. He told us that he had recently changed his life and came to Christ by joining his Evangelical church. The real message was that he wasn’t interested. Alright, prayer and finish. I knew that I had felt prompted to knock that door, but I didn’t know why until their oldest son Hector came out of the shadows of the bed in the corner of the room. He had been listening the entire time but had been lying down because his tooth was hurting, but now that we were readying to leave came out and commented that others have passed by before, but didn’t teach quite as clearly. When we taught he understood, and he liked what we had taught. He asked if we had a church nearby and if he could come and see it. He seemed like a shining speck of hope among the family. We hope that we can find him this Sunday where he told us to meet him, that would be a really cool turnout.

Alright guys I love you take care, keep me updated on anything cool that happens up there in Utah and at home, until next week!
Elder Bronson

Monday, September 12, 2011

Here in Coban everything is beautiful

Wow you guys have some incredible sunsets. Here in Coban everything is beautiful, but there are hardly any sunsets, sorry mom.

Haha wow I miss Brandyn SO MUCH. I honestly miss him as much as I miss you guys; a member of the family is he! Man I miss him; it’s going to be awesome to see everyone again.

Alrighty for the week, my companion was sick last Monday and we didn’t leave the house, on Tuesday we had important appointments so we left, but came back to the home early for the same reason. Sunday we didn’t leave the house either, September 11th here was voting day and seeing that this isn’t the United States of America and the passing of power is a little crazy at times we didn’t leave the house either. It was by far the most calm relaxed Sabbath day I have had in so long... since my first area in Juana de Arco. My companion decided to put the Day of Rest into action and slept for like 5 hours, I studied the Book of Mormon in English from Ether to Moroni 10, took some well needed time to just ponder about things and studied. I looked at what the Gospel Principles book says about what is the day of rest, what it said really helped me clear my view, maybe it will enlighten you guys too. At first I thought it was a day to just take a break right? Go to church worship God and take it easy, but it turns out that we do all that so that our minds will be clear and free to think about God and spiritual things. It’s a day to remember our need for spiritual nourishment as well as the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ. We can do service even though it is a labor because we do it thinking about God helping others is helping Him. Anything that would distract you from the Lord would be inappropriate, but anything that would bring your attention to Him would be perfectly good. It also talked about how it ISNT a day to just sleep all day, because that would be very unproductive, and in the same way wouldn’t be focusing on spiritual needs. It’s that focus that matters.

Last week a member gave us a reference to her niece that is now living with her, that wants to be baptized. She’s only 8 years old but her story isn’t a very happy one. Her parents are abusive and don’t care about her, they abandoned her to her aunt Marcela, and even her aunt isn’t always the most understanding person. When Marcela, the member, told us the story Olivia, the 8 year old broke down crying. She jumped on me and cried on my shoulder, I didn’t stop her, poor little Olivia. The day before that, Tuesday, we were going into our first teaching appointment with them but they weren’t home, so we came back in the night to see if they would be. It was already very dark, and they only have candle light. We came up to the door and Olivia answered but said something about someone being in the ¨Santo¨ (or I guess you could say Holy Place) but didn’t mention that her aunt wasn’t home. We came in and followed her deeper into the house, I had just entered, Olivia already disappearing down a hallway I stepped on some dry sticks. How cliché. Next moment some not-so-friendly guard dogs came charging into the room through a dark doorway.  All I had in my hands was my Book of Mormon and my companions too, I’m pretty sure if Olivia didn’t come back to drive them off I could have been dog chow. Saved from 2 hungry canines by an eight year old. ¨El Santo¨ turned out to be a big room with walls covered in newspaper and a little closet with a sanctuary of candles and Jesus Idols, complete with some Kekchi lady chanting something creepy in Kekchi. Ummmm... see ya Olivia, well be back tomorrow when your aunt is home! Haha the thing is the lady doing all that was the groundkeeper, and not a member. Still really creepy.

I had a crazy dream the other night that as a missionary I had fallen to my death, SPLAT.  But being a missionary when I died I became an angel and was still in the service of my God, watching over other people and putting my hands on their heads giving them blessings when they were weak. Later on I saw God on a throne, but it was something silly like in an office building, I went back to my angel duties of floating around. It was kinda neat, sorry for the randomness.

 The pictures this week are of something that we did last week exploring a little place called Las Islas (the islands) it was pretty neat but my computer didn’t want me to upload them last week so I did this week. This week just today we went to some waterfalls about an hour out of Carcha, it was really cool but we got soaked just from the heavy spray of it.  It was so HUGE. And my camera was out of batteries. Ugh. But my companion took some with his so I will still have some hopefully.

Love you all so much please take care this week and use you time productively, know how much God loves you and just wants you do make right choices, that’s basically the only reason why we are here on earth anyway.

Elder Bronson

Monday, September 5, 2011

I’m hoping for a birthday present from above of a baptism that day, how great would that be!

Alrighty then another change another companion...oy more companions. You are right Mom I have been highly blessed to have so many good companions in a row, my new companion is named Elder Opazo, from Chile, South America. ¨the only country to fit inside a tortilla¨ and its kinda funny here in Coban there is a special type of chile called Chile cobanero, and that has basically now become his new nickname. He was trained by Elder Bowman, my second trainer so it looks like we are mission ¨brothers¨. He’s an amazing guy and we are really focusing in on baptizing this change. Last weekend we fasted for baptismal dates and the Lord sent us 5, and two of which are very sure for the 30th of September. My birthday the 24th falls on a Saturday and I’m hoping for a birthday present from above of a baptism that day, how great would that be!                                           

Just today we went to explore some little tiny waterfalls but we got to go in Pday clothes and I got some really good pictures. I won’t be able to send them this week because the computer is being lame but maybe next week you will see my epic slingshot vs. wooden sword battle with Elder Hale, from Las Vegas. Intense with the raging water down below!

 Change week was a little crazy, Tuesday night I spent the night with Elder Umana again in our house in Coban 2, he said it was really weird being back there. We waited all day Wednesday for our companions to arrive but there was a teacher strike that blocked a couple of roads and they didn’t get here in time and I spent the night with Elder Umana in his place. If you are wondering how the living is here, in my house at least there is running water in two sinks, one kitchen one bathroom, the house is kinda small but we don’t need much space. Plenty of light, one of the better houses I think. I really like it.

Well I too have come to the point in not knowing what more to say. Plenty of things happen every day all week but they seem so normal now that nothing spectacular come to mind. I’m emailing Elder Pincock every week something small, Hawaii sounds fun too, they might just have as many chickens there as we do here. Did you know that he knows how to hypnotize a chicken? That’s one that I don’t even know how to do. Well my beloved brethren I hope all goes really well back in the summery states, I love you all so much and can’t wait for next week to write you all again. Take care!

Elder Bronson

Haha I had a little bit of extra time and found an email that you guys sent me one year ago on Labor day.  I was still in Santa Elena with Elder Segura, I had just received a package of music and peanut butter and jelly and pop tarts. How strange is it to think that far back, but it seems like it was only just a little bit ago, time has gone so fast.

Love you all