Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Two Conference Week

Hello Everyone!
It's been another great week in Galt.
This week has been full of meetings and trips to Elk Grove.  On Wednesday we had a "Spanish Conference" which is like a zone conference for all the Spanish speaking Elders and Sisters in the mission.  That was great to be able to see everyone together in one place.  It was weird though because I realized I don't know about half of all the Elders and sisters in the Spanish work.  All the Elders I know are going home in the next couple of months.  We have probably gotten about 20 new sisters in the past few transfers and a good deal of elders the past few as well.  We received a lot of specific training for the people we work with which was great because the type of work we do is completely different from the English work.  It was sad to hear that we are not doing very good as a Spanish side of the mission.  We've only have 23 baptisms this year (which means the baptisms I took part in [Mendozas, Juan Carlos, Mike Mendez, and Martin Diaz] contribute to 7 of those 23, or about 1/3 of all the baptisms in Spanish work).  We need to step it up and it looks like we will be doing that quite soon in the Lodi Branch!
We also had a mission leadership meeting on Friday which has been one of the best meetings I've been to on my mission.  They talked to all of us and told us the mission is doing great in finding people to teach and actually teaching them, but something is happening to those people and they aren't making it to the step of baptism.  We got a lot of training to take back and teach to all the other elders and sisters in the mission so that we can step it up.
Probably the most interesting thing that happened this week was with Hermana Mendoza.  I found out this week that since shortly after I left the area she really hasn't liked me.  I guess a lot of drama/gossip  happened after I left and the missionaries blamed it on me figuring I would never come back to the area and the problems would go away and be all worked out.  It would have been fine, but now I'm back! She wouldn't tell me anything but wasn't willing to trust me again.  I talked to her a lot and read her a lot of scriptures and then we left for the night.  She's been less active for a few months, since almost right after her baptism, and so we didn't know what would happen with her.  She called me the next day and told me that she had had a vision the night before and the person testified to her of everything we said and she knew she needed to move on from her past and make use of the atonement.  She said she felt like there were a lot of bad influences that made her not like me and she thought it was because I have a strong spirit that could help her out a lot and she had taken it the wrong way.  She knew she needed to come back to church.  She also said her son (who's a non-member) had a dream where he talked to God and he knew they needed to come back to church as well. It was a miracle! She still didn't want to come back to the branch because she thinks the people like to gossip but she ended up coming with her son on Sunday! They left quickly right after Sacrament meeting but it was definitely progress for her and her family.
Last night we had dinner with Juan and Jovita Rodriguez which was awesome.  She's the best cook I know in the mission!  We also got caught up with everything that happened in the past months and we got to see pictures from her son's wedding in Tampa.  It was great to see them.  Juan's mom has been in town from Mexico for the last month and they took her to Tampa, to the temple in Oakland, and to church twice here.  She loves the church but unfortunately she's leaving to Mexico today so we will send her information to the missionaries in Mexico City and hope they find her.
Things are looking up and we are very excited to see some good success in the near future!
Les Quiero,
Elder Gaskill

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