Dear Wee Dad: Don´t be a Bumbry-- I would hate for Pres. Douglas to show up at our house and be like, ¨He simply exploded.¨ But I do hope you enjoy that Spare Oom.
Dear Delaney: Halloween sounds like sooooo much fun! Please send me pictures of your costumes!!!! And have fun in NJHS :)
Dear Ethan: You should publish, that was a work of literary genius. Also, I will not talk to Elder Gothard about underwear.
Dear Mom: Conference was da bomb! I loved Elder Klebinglat´s talk too!!!! And that staement from Elder Packer caught my attention too. My comp used it in a contact the other day. We got to watch conference in English, which was soooooooo nice, but I assume it was simply left in Spanish for the Spanish speakers. Also, OF COURSE I KNOW AGUACATE IS AVOCADO! It looks the same in the DR as it does in the US, haha! I eat avocado several times a week, yuca as well. Thanks for the pictures, they didn´t completely load, but that one with Grandma is really cute!
So, mission things. It is so wonderful when people really catch the vision of the restored gospel. We have an investigator that we taught the plan of salvation, and she really understood the implications of it, and was asking good questions. That was a cool lesson. And then she went to the Saturday session of conference, and her favorite talk was the one about defending Joseph Smith. How cool! Yesterday we had a follow up lesson with her to really explain authority and the ordinance of baptism, and the importance of the restoration, and she really got it. We talked about recieving the witness of the Holy Ghost for ourselves, and she talked about her own experiences with that during our lessons and at conference. Experiences like these are what make the mission really awesome. SO few people understand the implications of our lessons, and it is so refreshing when someone does. We are trying to figure out a way to teach to the general level of understanding here. And it´s not that the people are all uneducated and simple-minded. Religion in the DR is like air, they all agree that we need it, and it is a normal part of everyday life to have people come into your home and preach at you. And we have to explain to them that they need to breathe a specific kind of air, and do so with a conscious effort: making committments, attending church regularly, etc. But so many of them really recognize the truth in our lessons, they just don´t know that they need to do something with it.
I get to give service a lot too. Mostly we´ve done house work, but we also cleaned up someone´s yard, and I got to wield a machette! We shelled guandules once too, and that was fun. Cleaned the church. My companion teaches piano on Sundays and I help a very little bit with flashcards of notes.
So here´s my Dominican Thing for the Week: NAMES. There are Latin names here, also Westernized-American names. And then there are the Dominican names. They are not like any names I have ever heard before. Some really good ones: Radelki, Aneori, Belkis, Noelki, Nicauri, Naurisbel, Ruester, Anadelmis, Awilda, Lujersi, Dismeri, Bayallo, Guarionox, Ambriorix. And names beginning with Y. They pronounce Ys and LLs with a ´Ja´sound, and names beginning with Y are really common. Here is the definitive list of all the Y names my comp and I know: Yukaira, Yubelkis, Yaidiri; Yamilka, Yahaira, Yubelsy, Yanelly, Yuleicy, Yudelka, Yuleini, Yudeini, Yesalin, Yaniris, Yoleni, Yascalin, Yessenia, Yuleiris, Yarilin, Yeiliny, Yaron, Yosdarwin. We spent a full half hour last night looking through her old agendas for good names. There are a lot more, so if any one is into the hipster-cultural baby name thing, I have a gold mine for you.
Anyway, love to everyone! General Conference this past weekend was wonderful. I am requesting right now that Mom put a link to Elder Bednar´s talk here at the end of my blog because it was really great, and I though it would be helpful to all of my non-Mormon friends, to better understand why I am serving a mission, and why missionary work is an important part of our church. It´s something like 10 or 15ish minutes, but I think it will be worth your while. And Elder Bednar is a great speaker, his anecdote in this is particularly entertaining. Have a great week everyone, and lots of love!
Link to Elder Bednar's talk: