Tuesday, March 5, 2013

What week am I on?

Hola Familia y amigos!

Thank you sooo much to Mom for the typed letter and to Heidi for her letter!

This week has been wonderful, but not quite as eventful as last week.

I want to talk about the Spain Madrid temple.  I have now had the chance to go in the waiting room.  We were waiting outside to meet up with some elders and we got really cold so we went and waited for a while in the waiting room.  The peace and spirit in the temple was soo strong!  On Thursday every missionary in the Madrid area gets to go to the temple for a session.  I am sooo excited!  They do this every 5th thursday of a transfer.  I feel very blessed to be in the Madrid area.  I am very excited to go to the Temple!

On P-day last week we went to Atocha--a more touristy part of town.  It was pretty and we had fun looking in some of the Shops.  We also had the funniest contact.  And a tender mercy.  It was about 3 minutes before we could go in and we were on the street we live on and there was nobody around.  It was cold and we were really tempted to go in early.  But I saw a couple walking our way and holding hands.  I thought, fine.  I will do one more contact.  I can talk about eternal families. 

So I stopped the couple and we had a really nice conversation with them.  They were not interested at all, but they were super nice and she thought it was great that we were trying to improve peoples’ faith in God.  The best part was when her husband told us he wanted to be Mormon.  I was shocked.  He then went on to say that he wanted 4 or 5 wives. So we explained polygamy and how we don´t practice that!

Paulino is progressing!  He is finally reading and marking his scriptures.  He told us he wants to be baptized someday, but he won´t make a commitment he isn´t sure he will keep, so we can´t give him a date.  I hope he continues to progress.  He still won´t come to church.

We had a great lesson with Paco, and we took him to give him a tour of the church.  He felt the spirit and is reading the book of Mormon.  He wants to be baptized too.  He didn´t make it to church because he was exhausted and has a surgery today (pray for him please) but if all goes well with the surgery and the doctor says he can get his foot wet he  is scheduled to be baptized on the 13 of April.

We had a lesson with Dayana yesterday and she loved it!  We taught the restoration and she totally believes in Joseph Smith.  She is praying day and night and we finally got her a Book of Mormon.  After teaching the first vision and finishing the words of Joseph Smith, she just said, “Wow.”  As we testified that this really happened she kept saying que maravilloso! and that she felt something she couldn´t describe.  We asked her to be baptized and she said that was a really big decision that she wanted to make sure was right.  I am confident that she will receive an answer as she continues to meet with us and feel the Spirit.

We had a less active come to church!  I was sooo happy.  We will continue to work on our investigators and encourage them and love them so that they can come!  Yesterday we had a mission fast to help us know how we can all work to reach the mission goals.  We want to have 1000 baptisms by the end of this year.  We have 60 something.  But, something I keep forgetting to mention which is incredible news: by the end of this year our mission is expected to double!  I am so excited and I know this will help the work progress!  I am so excited that I will pretty much be able to see the mission double.  What a beautiful time to be serving a mission!

Tomorrow we are doing intercambios. Or exchanges.  They are different than the Ogden mission.  We will switch tomorrow at 2 and get back with our normal companion Thursday at 12 when we go to the Temple.  So it is kind of a long exchange.  But I am super excited!  I am going to Alcala which I am told is on the other side of Madrid.  But I am way excited!

Questions to answer:
Darrin:  You mentioned in your last note that you are teaching.  About how many discussions do you teach a week? 
We teach about 7-12 lessons a week.  This includes a lot of less active lessons though.

Darrin:  About how many people come to Sacrament meeting in your ward?  (100, 150, 200, etc.)
about 110--it is a pretty good ward. A lot of old people.  The primary and youth groups are small.  Not many families in the ward.

Darrin:  How is the food?  What are some of your favorite things so far?
I love the food so far.  We don´t get fed much so I have been buying hotdogs and sandwich food.  But I love their tortilla patata.  It has nothing to do with a tortilla.  It is egg, potato, and cheese.  Delicious.

Darrin: You wrote in your last letter about street contacting.  What other types of missionary work do you do during the week since you said that tracting is not worthwhile?
We do a ton of street contacting.  We don´t knock doors.  But we try to visit less actives, we have English class and our weekly Noche de Hogar (family night).

Darrin: I'm guessing most of the people you meet are Catholic.  How do they feel about the pope resigning from his post? 
We actually teach mostly latinos who are not always Catholic.  Lots of evanglisticos and testigos de Jehova.  But I have heard a little about it.  One lady said that he couldn´t handle the position and he wasn´t good with the young people. I guess she thought it was good he was resigning.

We are in a different locutorio (internet place) and I don´t know how to send pictures.  I will send some next week!  Sorry!

Con Amor,
Hermana Olsen

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