Monday, April 15, 2013

April 15, 2013

Dear Family:

How´s everything going back home? Things are going pretty normal here in the office. This morning we received 2 digital pianos that no one ordered, so they are now sitting on our floor while we figure out what to do with them.

I´m glad you got the letter from President Jackson. Sorry it was a little late, I´m getting a little behind on things. I did read it, in fact I´m the one who sent it. I thought briefly about putting in a little personal note like Hi Mom!, but then I didn´t. 

So yes, I am the district leader here. It´s actually just me, zone leaders work in pairs, but not district leaders. My main jobs are to make assignments for and conduct district meeting every week and get the key indicators from each companionship at the end of the week to report to the zone leaders. We only have 3 companionships in our district including me and Winkelkotter. So far it´s been pretty good. Honestly I´ve never noticed who is senior companion and who is junior companion. I think if I´m the district leader then Elder Winkelkotter is the senior companion by default. 

Thanks for that story about when President Rogers was a zone leader. I really like that, that he made a difference in that person´s mission. That´s the kind of leader I want to be. I want to really love and serve my district and help out the missionaries. I feel like I need to do better in that, go the extra mile. It´s hard for me to keep track of everything though. We´re always so busy in the office it´s hard sometimes to remember to be a district leader as well as an office elder. But it´s only been a few weeks, so hopefully as I keep learning and trying I´ll get better. Pray for me! :)

I´m so so glad too that we still get to teach. I would go crazy if we didn´t and if we didn´t have such amazing people we are working with. Everything that happened with Marcelo and his family happened several months ago, so I don´t know really well, but he and his wife were both in a pretty bad place afterwords. She seems to be doing fine now though. Marcelo as well is doing great. That´s what is so amazing. He made such changes in his life thanks to the Gospel. It is wonderful to hear him talk about the Plan of Salvation and how he wants to do everything right so that he can see his kids again. And he is on his way. On Saturday he was baptized by Elder Winkelkotter. It was a really great service and as always my favorite part was listening to him bear his testimony. Both he and his wife are happy, friendly people. You would never know that they had suffered so much. It is such a blessing to see people change their lives through the power of the Gospel. Even more so to be a part of that by bringing the message and the spirit. 

We found a new investigator this week, who is easily one of my favorite people I´ve ever meet. His name is Eugenio. He is about 63 years old and is from Sevilla, right here in Spain. Now, I don´t know if you know this, but it is incredibly hard to find Spanish people who are interested in the Gospel. Most missionaries go home without baptizing anyone who is actually from Spain. Let alone someone older than 60. Which makes him remarkable already. Then add on how we found him. He came to General Conference. We met him in the chapel watching the Priesthood session of conference. He explained that he has a very close friend in Portugal who is a member. He went to church once or twice with her several years ago as well as began meeting with the missionaries. Something happened and he stopped visiting with them, but his friend told him about conference and he decided he wanted to try again. He said he liked what he had seen of our church and that he wanted to be a part of it. Fast forward a day and Elder Winkelkotter has our first lesson with him (I was on splits). He says that he studied with the testigos (Jehovah´s Witnesses) for a few years, but something stopped him from being baptized. He said he couldn´t quite give them 100%, but that he hopes he can with us. A few days later we taught the Restoration (which he already knew and had read and underlined the entire pamphlet) and set a baptismal date for the 27th. In church yesterday someone asked him if he was a member and he said: After the 27th I am! Are you starting to see why I think he´s so great? But all of that is not even why I love him so much. I love him because he is the nicest guy, he makes friends with everyone he sees. He came to Marcelo´s baptism and gave a member a ride. At the end of the 40 min drive they were best friends. After the baptism a bunch of members and Marcelo´s family went back to his house to eat and talk and Eugenio was the center of attention the whole time. He carried on a conversation with the whole room, talking about whatever it was (he´s really intelligent as well). I absolutely love the man! Plus he has a full beard and great hair. I want to be him when I´m old. I have no doubts we will baptize him on the 27th and I can´t wait. All of this goes to show how much difference a member who shares the gospel with those they love can make.

Well, I have talked an awful lot. I´ve included some pictures. The first 3 are of the famous "molinos" or windmills in Consuegra. These are the windmills that Don Quijote jousts with. It was a beautiful day and a lot of fun. It´s definitely one of the sights I would want to take you guys to if you come. The other 2 are from Marcelo´s baptism. 

I will definitely be Skyping the family for Mother´s Day. All the computers in the office have webcams, so there should be no problem. 

Well, I´m off. Tell the girls I love them. I hope driving is going well. Erin is an amazing athlete and I can´t wait to see her in the Olympics. I love you all! Be safe and hug each other every day. Bye!

Elder Cousins

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