Monday, December 28, 2009

Elder Farnbach's 17th Letter

Dear Friends and Family,

I confess, talking on the phone was wonderful, but it sure made proselyting the next day difficult. The Zone Leaders came over, though, and that helped. They are, as we would say here, "tired". One was just released as AP because President only has missionaries serve 6 months at a time. The other is kinda the golden boy who we all assume will be AP one day, because he fast-tracked from DL to ZL in a single transfer. President always has one white, and one black AP. Anyway, they are both starting to get worn out from working all the time, so they watch a movie here, take an hour off there. Still some of the best teachers in the mission, but like I said... TIRED! This helped me to set my goal, though. I want to finish without ever getting "tired". That's the goal.
I had somewhere I was going with that... oh. I used my cheese and tortillas to make the ZLs breakfast burritos. I always try and teach that it's our job to help those above us, especially in the Church, where they don't receive much physical recompense. The ZLs usually miss a meal to do interviews or instruct us, so I always try and have something ready for them.
Being Senior has strained that slightly. Sunday was really discouraging, though. Most of those people that we ALWAYS count on to come... didn't. We have 3 baptismal dates right now, and only one showed up. We literally had a conversation like this.
Us: "This is the only true church"
Inv: "Oh, I know!"
Us: "That means that no other Church is true"
Inv: "Yes"
Us: "So if you want to be baptized, you shouldn't go to your old Church" [ instead of coming to this, your new church ]
Inv: "Oh, why?"
Anyway, we are really working our tails off to fix this transfers worth of baptisms, and the ZLs pointed out that we can plan one or two transfers out. We have names and people for 7 next transfer, and then, we are praying for 7 the transfer after that. Goals reflect the desires of our hearts, and frankly, we just want to help everybody. I've been having real moments where I would just love to see everybody be righteous, and it feels great... except when they are NOT!
We were invited to dinner at one of my recent converts house, and he's just got the coolest testimony. I am happy to report I've only had one person I've baptized go inactive so far :)
I really DON'T like the Camp [the Liberian refuge camp where he is serving ], though. It frustrates me how much people are willing to sit and let life be done to them, instead of doing something with life. I'll probably be here forever, though. Elder B. is almost finished training, and President doesn't like to leave people in their training areas. He also LOVES training new missionaries in the Camp, so Elder H. thinks I'll be here another 3-4 transfers. That's what we guessed about Abomosu, though, so hopefully...
Not really much else to say... I'm sorry to hear about Great-grandma Rose :( I know that it's a long shot, but I've always secretly been thinking about how cool it would be to introduce the girl I'm going to marry to Great-grandma Rose :P
What else... Sorry I am not writing more about my investigators, but I haven't grown really attached to any of them in my few weeks here, yet, especially with Christmas. We committed our entire investigator class to baptism, though, and that was like, 20 people. We need to follow up, of course, but we taught all about the baptismal covenant, and asked if they were willing to live up to their end, which they responded with a resounding "YES!" so here is hoping!
Also, we had a great lesson with a woman who can't speak English. We got approval, because her husband is a member. Anyway, I was teaching, but I'll be honest, sometimes you just don't think the Spirit will be there. Elder Holland said, though, that you are definitely teaching by the Spirit when you teach and learn something. I was talking about why God does what He does, and said "All of God's energy is focused on making us truly happy"... then paused for a second and thought "Wow! Why didn't I know that?!" I mean, He who is greatest among you, let him be your servant...? Never put two and two together like that before that day.

Love you all! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! Go and serve somebody. There is no greater happiness.
Elder Farnbach

P.S Mom, does Elder Sullivan shoot home any updates? I haven't heard anything about him. Also, if possible, I'd love to here from Elder Sullivan, Elder Jones, Ex-Elder Winder, and Elder Mineer about any advice they have, especially when it comes to taking care of a junior elder.

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