Wednesday, October 3, 2012

October 3, 2012

Hola family and friends! Greetings from. . . wait for it! . . . Madrid! I´ve been assigned to Barrio 6, the only area in the mission with a temple, and I live about 3 minutes away from it. So, I didn´t go very far, but that´s okay because this area is awesome! My trainer (more about him later) keeps telling me it´s the best area in the mission. We have a ward (barrio) of about 250 members who, I´m told, are very excited about missionary work. I haven´t meet any of them yet, but I can´t wait to. It´s going to be awesome to go to church in an actual chapel again!

My trainer is Elder Rigtrup from Washington D.C. He´s got a year and half in the mission, but is still totally focused. He is obedient and works hard. He definitely knows his way around and I´m glad to have him as my trainer.

We are in bit of an odd situation investigator wise. Somehow we have no area books or recent records or anything. We have four investigators from the last transfer (Elder Rigtrup was in this area already), but that´s it. Elder Rigtrup says 2 of them are golden and we definitely will get them baptized so I´m excited to meet them and start teaching. I hope I get to be part of a baptism before leaving. I do have transfers here (training is 12 weeks), so I think I´ve got a good chance.

Yesterday was a pretty crazy day. We got in the morning and said goodbye to the Malaga and Barcelona elders. Then we finished packing and cleaning and then waited around all morning for the president and his assistants to come pick us up. They arrived around 1:30. President Jackson and his wife are awesome! They haven´t been here long, but they know what they are doing and they are definitely inspired. (And yes, my surgery was actually one of the first things we talked about. He asked if we had meet before and I said no, but one of your colleagues operated on me and I met some of your staff). We then traveled to the mission home. It´s about a half hour away, just outside the main city in this super nice development (or urbanization). It was awesome just to be in an actual house again. What was even better was that Hermana Jackson cooked lunch for us, Cafe Rio style. And afterwords. . . brownies and ice cream. I was in heaven! They were almost as good as Mom´s. We got some training and stuff and then went back to the capilla (chapel) on the temple grounds and received our new companions and assignments.

After that we (Elder Rigtrup and Elders Plum and Peña our piso mates) got our luggage and walked over to our apartment. We spent a few minutes unpacking, etc. and then we left for my very first lesson. Our investigator´s name was Andres and he was awesome! I guess they have been teaching him for awhile and he is all ready for baptized but he is having trouble with drinking with his friends. We didn´t have very much time so wasn´t really a lesson per se. Elder Rigtrup shared a scripture and then we both bore our testimonies that he could overcome this problem with the Lord´s help and that he would more joy in the Gospel than anything else. When I bore my testimony I was overcome with love for him. It was absolutely incredible to me how much I loved him, without ever having met him before. The Spirit worked through me and I know he felt it. I know he felt my love and God´s love. The sad part about it all is he is moving and that may have been our last visit with him. That just made it even more of a testimony to me of how powerful it is to be a missionary. I may never see Andres again, but I want so badly for him to be able to change and be happy, truly happy in the gospel. I love him so much already. I hope is able to get baptized.

Well, I almost forgot the most important part! New address! Here it is:

Calle Luis de Hayos Sainz 168 9-D
28030 Madrid, Spain

So I better get a ton of mail from you all! Haha! Oh, and if you do send me a house warming package, could you throw my sweater in there? It is getting chilly here! Also, if you ever send packages you need to write Not for Resale on them, so I don´t have to pay a fortune to receive them. Gracias!

Other important thing, p-days are Wednesdays now (as I´m sure you realized). Today we went to the Prado Museum, which was pretty cool, but cost too much. Oh that reminds me, could you also send me one of my student cards? Elder Rigtrup got in free with his, and I´ve heard there are other places that works too.

Well, I think that is about all for today. I can´t wait to get out and start working with our investigators (at least 1 appointment tonight) and to tell you all about it! Wish me luck! Love to everyone, until next week!

Elder Cousins

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