Monday, April 4, 2016

Goodbye Gardenias, Hello Mazate

Hey there everybody!

This week has been pretty great! As you can tell by the subject line, I had transfers! :O Saying goodbye to everyone I got to know in my first area (Gardenias) was bittersweet, but I´m so grateful for the chance I had to be a part of their lives. My last day in Gardenias was pretty great! We had a baptism! :) I got to baptize a little eight year-old boy named Mario. He´s been going to church for a while with his older brother who is already member, but he was just waiting until he turned eight to be able to be baptized. He turned eight last week, and we were going to wait untilSaturday to baptize him, but then when I told him I had transfers he got really sad because he wanted me to baptize him! So we planned a last minute baptism on Tuesday! It was pretty great! :) After that, I went to say goodbye to as many people as I had time for! All of the members and recent converts were so sweet. One member made my favorite lunch for my last day, and some of my converts got me presents! It was so sweet. I can´t wait to be able to see them all again!

But hey, enough about Gardenias, let´s talk about my new area! I was transferred to the zone Mazate-Lincoln, area Bilbao (pronounced Beel-bow). I love it so far! It´s a lot smaller than my last area, and it´s a little bit richer, urban lifestyle (rich for Guatemala anyway), so it´s a bit of an adjustment, but I like it so far! There´s a really nice gym that we go to every morning, lots of little restaurants, and stuff like that. So that´s pretty nice! Also, this zone is known in the mission as "The Promised Land" as far as baptisms go, so I´m pretty stoked about that. My companion is Elder Cook from California. Another gringo! He´s super cool though. I honestly think I get along better with him so far than any of my other companions! So that´s great. He has 21 months in the mission!!! Sooo we´re pretty sure I´m his last companion. Haha it´s pretty weird being with someone who has so long in the mission. He likes to try to make me homesick by talking about how close he is to going home...haha he´s a punk. But it´s all good!

So we´re in kind of an interesting situation right now. My companion is District Leader, but I´m senior companion. Our mission president talked to us and said that he wants my companion to spend a lot of time on divisions and stuff helping out his district, so I´ll basically be in charge of working in the area with other missionaries. It´s kind of weird, and a little different having a bit more responsibility, but it´s cool! My zone is pretty different, because we actually have more sisters than elders. So zone meetings feel a little bit like relief society, but hey, it´s all good!

As far as proselyting goes, I don´t have a ton to update you all on! This week has been spent getting to know people and the area pretty much. I still don´t know the members nor our investigators super well, but hopefully this week I´ll get a little more acquainted and be able to really start working!

I hope you all enjoyed General Conference! I definitely did. Even though it was a little different listening to it in Spanish, I still enjoyed the opportunity to listen to such incredible men called of God give us counsel. That´s about all for this week!

I love you all!

-Elder Thomas

No official pics this week because as Dylan put it "he got stuck with a crappy computer". These pics were sent to me by a member (Alexis) over Facebook this week.

With Alex, a good friend from Gardenias who is getting ready to leave on his mission
Finally got the pictures that went with this week's post!

A pic with Elder Toala right before we got transferred!

 I decided I´d take a pic of the top of the notch shower I was blessed with in Gardenias. I think I´ll miss it more than anything else. ;)

Something really intense bit my ankle during the night my last week in made my ankle swell up like this and it was pretty hard to walk for a couple of days. But don´t worry, it´s normal now! The members say it was this special kind of bee, but I´m pretty sure it was Godzilla spider coming back for round two. ;)

Not the best pic, but one more pick with Yaquelin and Eli (the two girls on the right) and two of their sisters, as well as Alexis!

One last pic with my converts Camila and Mari. I love serving in Guatemala, they make me look so tall! :)

Lila and Otto! Mom, you can thank this lady for making me lunch every day for the past 16 weeks! They´re the best.

A picture of my favorite lunch that Hermana Lila made me for my last day in Gardenias! SO GOOD!

Mario's Baptism

With Mario's Family

One last pic of the District before transfers!

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