Monday, November 23, 2015

Chase is feeling under the weather (possibly from eating raw hamburger)

I wish I had a lot to write about this week... but honestly, I've got nothing. I've been pretty sick this week. Last Monday I ate a "hamburger"(and I put quotes because the hamburgers here do not taste the same as a hamburgers from the states) and I think it was really undercooked. I've been pretty sick ever since. I've been trying to take it easy this week, but we are still making a ton of progress with our investigators. We are currently teaching 35 people who are on their way to be baptized. To start the week, we didn't have a lot of people with baptismal dates and were determined to challenge a whole bunch this week. By the end of the week we have ten more people with baptismal dates and they are pretty promising.

We have been teaching the family that lives across the street from Layevska and Ambar and the two kids that live there are so cool. We are super good friends. Joneiker is 13 and Monserrat is 11. We have mostly beeen teaching the two of them, because their parents are always working, but the whole family is super cool. They read the Book of Mormon together all the time and really love the gospel. A week ago we challeneged the two kids to be baptized this 12 of December. Things are going well and they are learning a ton. Last night when we were teaching, and Joneiker turned to me and whispered... Elder Abel, I have a confession to make. I was a little scared, but then he said, "I want to be baptized." lololol I said that we are preparing a baptism for him already and he was so happy! They both went to church yesterday and loved it. I'm sure that they will be baptized on the 12th as long as the parents permit it.

This Sunday it was poooouring rain. It's always sad when it rains on a Sunday because nobody goes to church. and I mean nobody. Out of the 6 missionaries in the ward, we were the only ones that were able to bring investigators to church. Usually we have about 130 people each week in the chapel. This week we had 45. It made me realize that we need to focus on the members as well as the investigators.

I hope you all have a good week and enjoy Thanksgiving( I think that it is this week, right? haha)

"Futbol" soccer in the rain.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

The sisters got baptized...and they caught a triantula in their house.

Layevska and Ambar got baptized last Saturday! It has been really cool watching them progress in the gospel. They are always so exicted to learn more! At the end of every appointment that we have with them, they always remind us to give them homework in the Book of Mormon. I baptized Layevska and Elder Ortiz baptized Ambar. Tonight we are going to go and teach the family. The parents want to learn English, and the dad said that if I teach him English, he will get baptized. I'm going to try to best to make that happen. HaHa

This week was stake conference, and it is always really hard to get investigators to go because stake conference is an hour and a half away. We have been teaching a couple (who are actually married!! That never happens in Costa Rica! haha) and they have been wanting to come to church for about 3 weeks now, but have never actually gone. This week when we taught them we told them about stake conference being an hour and a half away. The wife said that she actually wanted to go! Yesterday she went with her 9 year old nephew and loved it. We also convinced Ambar and Layevska to go and they are now all best friends. I hope this leads to the conversion of this other family! We are working with so many great families right now. We are teaching a family of 8 and they Lovvvvvve us. They are all so cool. The only problem is that they live an hour away from the church.... I have faith that they will make the trip this Sunday, but it's so far for a family with young children to walk!

Another update on animals... I have now seen the little red poisionous frogs that are from the rainforest. They look so cool, but I am always scared to get close and take a picture because they are pretty dangerous. Also... after a long rainy day of work, we walked into the house. I saw something big on the ceiling and couldn't really figure out what it was. After getting closer to get a better look I saw that it was a HUGE triantula! A lot bigger than my hand! We knocked it down and caught it and got some cool pictures of it. With all of the scary bugs and frogs that we find in our house I am getting a little scared to sleep on the floor. We have a man witch that we found (thats a story for another time) that is making us hammocks. Hopefully they will be ready today. I'm sick of sleeping on the floor.

I hope that all is well with all of you! I would like to encourage everyone to help out the missionaries in your own ward. Members can help investigators so much more than missionaries can. Missionaries can teach all day long with pretty words, but if they don't have a friend in the church, they are never going to have any motivation to go!

Love you all! Remember that there is power in prayer!

Baptism day!
A sloth sighting.

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

It has been a week of unusual jungle animal sightings.

This week has been the week of strange animals. This past week I have seen bugs the size of my hand, lizards that look like they belong in Jurrassic park, triantulas, a gigantic bird with a neon yellow chest, a whole bunch of huge frogs and a SLOTH!

All of these animals have funny stories behind them, but I'll just tell the stories about the sloth and the lizard.We study outside everyday because it is hotter inside our house than outside. As I was studying I heard a rustling in the little garden that is outside our house. When I got a little closer to look a HUGE lizard jumped out of no where right in front on me. It was a little bit longer than my hand and forarm. Not going to lie it kind of scared me... It had bright yellow stripes and super long ears. I seriously thought it was a lost dinosaur. After I got a few pictures it hopped away and hasn't returned since then.

I have heard a lot of people saying that they have seen sloths here, and I really wanted to see one. Ever since I've got here I always have looked up in the trees to try to spot one. One day my companion and I were walking down a dirt road with a bunch of vines above us. I said to my companion, "if there really are sloths in this area, they must live around here. But I wonder what they look like.... Probably like a big hairy coconut." and right as I said that, I saw something rustle up in the trees. But whatever moved stopped and I sat there staring at what I thought was a huge coconut. After staring at it for about 5 minutes... It slowly started moving! The big hairly coconut was actually a sloth! I was so happy that I finally got to see one!
The next animal on my checklist is an armadillo. Apparently there is one that lives really close to our house.

I have been reading a lot of the bible this week during my studies and I have found a ton of really good scriptures. If any of you are looking for something to read, read the book of Proverbs. It is so full of great life advice. Mom I thought you would like Prov 15:20 and 1 Corinthians 9:24-27. And if anybody can find a woman like it describes in Prov 31: 13-31... let me know;)

As far as the work is going.. we are going to baptize Layepska and Ambar this saturday! The parents gave us permission, so everything is all set up and ready to go!

Shoutout to my Mamá for running her first 100 mile race! Proud of you!

Keep the emails coming!!
Love you all!

Monday, November 2, 2015

Neighbor performing surgery on Chase, and some weird thoughts on how Americans celebrate Halloween.


This week has flown by just like the rest of them! This week went by so fast that I forgot that it was Halloween until the people here started reminding me! The people here don’t celebrate Halloween at all... and they have the weirdest ideas of how Americans celebrate. I had a ton of different people come up to me and ask me if my family will be sacrificing children tonight? Apparently the rumor in Costa Rica is that on Halloween, everybody in the United States worships Satan and sacrifices children, and I’m not kidding. Everybody is scared of Halloween because of that.

I have some really good news! I finally got my ingrown toenails worked on!! I’ve had some realllly bad ingrown toenails on both feet for about three months now, and I just kind of dealt with the pain this whole time. It started to get really bad and I decided to finally do something about it. My neighbor offered to do the surgery and cut about half of my toe off. It doesn’t look too pretty right now, but at least it doesn’t hurt anymore!! My companion took a video of the whole thing and it is about 45 mins long of me screaming like a little girl... If we cut out the boring parts, I might think about sending it to you all. haha

The work here is still really good. I am starting to become really good friends with the people here. They are all so nice. The hardest part is still getting them all to come to church. We are teaching two sisters who are 13 and 15 years old named Layepska and Ambar. They are super funny and we already are really close. They are supposed to be baptized this 14 of November and I really hope that it all works out. We have permission from the parents and everything, the only thing that is holding us back is that my companion made a joke that to baptize someone, you hold them under the water until the bubbles stop... Layepska didn’t like that and now she’s scared of being baptized.....

That’s about it for the updates though... we have 31 people that are progressing towards baptism, which is really good for Costa Rica, I’m hoping to have 40 by next week. It’s not too shabby, especially because we had 7 when I got here... haha

Keep praying for me!

Happy Halloween! Thanks for your emails and your prayers! Love you!

Old Branch Presidents birthday party!