Monday, August 27, 2012

August 27, 2012

¡Hola mi familia!

 Another week and what an emotional rollercoaster it was. Some really great things happened though! First off before I forget, I'm not sick anymore thank you for the prayers! We found a new, very promising investigator so we´re excited about that! Her name is Jocelin, and she is 15 years old and has already been to church twice with us! So we had the first lesson with her and we are doing a lot better switching off in lessons and sharing time, we really focused on that in comp study this week, but then I gave her the invitation to get baptized and she said yes! It was only the "soft" commitment so there isn't a date set or anything yet but she is solid. Then we got the ward directory and are trying to clean it out so we walked a TON on Tuesday but it's good. We found one guy though, saddest story ever. He is about 30 years old maybe and has three kids. But three years ago he had an accident in work and fell fifty feet. He was seriously injured, his mind is completely gone, he is paralyzed from the waist down and has very limited arm movement. He cannot live on his own but his wife married him after the accident in order to take care of him. The saddest thing was his youngest son was 7 months old.. If I understood everything the wife was saying I'm sure I would've been balling my eyes out. But we had a prayer and I got to offer it, the Spirit was so strong it was incredible.

 Julio was doing great this week, had gone the whole week truly this time without drinking but on Saturday night we showed up for his lesson and he was was heart braking. I was so sad and felt so much anger not necessarily to him but to Satan for not letting him progress in the gospel. He knew it was wrong and kept asking for forgiveness the whole time we were there and saying he was sorry. He said that we were the examples he has never had in his life and we mean so much to him. And then he got frustrated with himself because he feels like he is letting down his Heavenly Father. We tried to just let him do the talking on Saturday night we went back on Sunday and had a very powerful discussion. We told him that we would not give up on him and neither will his Heavenly Father, we all know he can do this and so does Julio and he wants to. We talked to him about the Priesthood and that it is the power to act in God's name and to do His will. He asked for a blessing and chose me to give it to him. I was so scared I was only able to do the first half in Spanish and the rest was English but he understood it because he lived in the US for like 20 years. But it was amazing. I want so bad for him to be able to do this, I can't believe the love I already have for these people especially our investigators.

 Alright our numbers this week in case you're interested ha-ha 5 investigators came to Sacrament, 30 lessons taught this week, 141 LPE's (street contacts), 20 references received and 11 contacted, 2 new investigators, and 101 people came to church this week, and 51 pupusas eaten. We are very happy with those numbers but all can be improved upon like always. And we are working hard to do it trust me. Oh a sweet story we were at a pupusaria and a guy came up and started talking in English to us which is always weird cause I never know if I should reply in English or struggle through in Spanish ha-ha but anyways he was like "I lived in Salt Lake and my mom is a member and I read the book of Mormon and I want you guys to come teach my family especially my daughter who is 17 and we want to come to church" well after I got up from falling off the bench in amazement we had him write his address down and everything and just talked a bit more and then he left. He was out of our area just barely so we gave it to the zone leaders to go talk to him on Saturday and they went out and could not find him. The directions here are ridiculous ha-ha. But they found the street but the house did not exist and the people on the street did not know who they were. I know the Lord sent them to us and he will make it possible for them to find the missionaries again because I think they are the ones who have been prepared to receive us. So fingers crossed again there. Oh and we have a baptism this Saturday! Raul is 13 years old and a stud! He is so ready for baptism I am excited for him!

The week before last I finished the Book of Mormon again in English so I`m starting it in Spanish or I have started in Spanish ha it`s very slow goin but that`s ok I seriously mark almost every verse no joke. Its amazing how much more you understand when you read in a different language because you have to focus so much more and really take time to do it. So I`m only like 15 chapters into Primero Nefí and then have done a couple other chapters but its cool. And as always it sounds like home is all good besides the fires still going that's ridiculous! I bet Lagoon was sweet! We definitely should do a trip when I get home and Brandi graduates ha-ha I`m excited for that. And dad gets to watch movies at work again!! What the heck I wanna watch a movie! We watch the testaments almost everyday at lunch so that's fun actually sometimes its in Spanish so I try to really focus. But my comp was in plays and stuff in high school so he says every line of every character during the movie...pretty annoying so i decided i will never quote a movie again while I'm watching it ha-ha.

 Oh fun fact apparently there was a 7.4 earthquake last night! We had no idea but some guys got emails from their family and the presidents wife emailed us too ha-ha but none of us felt it, I'm kinda bummed ha-ha but you cant even tell. All the homes here held up pretty well against it I guess ha-ha. The Spanish is still coming, slowly but coming I guess some members are saying I have improved a lot but I dono if I believe em haha. But anyways its good to know you`re all doing so great!

 "Let us do whatever is required to qualify for the Holy Ghost as our companion, and then let us go forward fearlessly so that we will be given the powers to do whatever the Lord calls us to do. That growth in power to serve may come slowly, it may come in small steps that are difficult for you to see, but it will come."

 —Henry B. Eyring

Brandi you`re doin great in cross country keep it up! And I`m glad you got my letter haha. Well I think that should about do it for me down here I love you all so much and I am so grateful you are praying for me everyday, pray for the people down here too. I pray for you always! The church is true! Follow its teachings and you will be truly happy and have Eternal Life!


Elder Derrick Jorgensen

Monday, August 20, 2012

August 20, 2012

The weeks just keep flyin by! And what a week this one was I dono where to begin but lets see Tuesday I went on splits with a Latino and holy cow that was tough communicating but actually we were able to get across everything we wanted to say and basically talked all day. His name is Elder Paniagua...bread and water hahaha I thought that was hilarious but anyways yeah we had lessons all day mostly with less actives but it was good. Then Wednesday I went back with Elder Hammond and we were back to doing work. This week we did a ton of lessons with less active members and it showed on Sunday, our attendance is usually around 70 and this week we had 120!! Yeah we are basically a couple of studs but its whatever ha-ha jk. The lessons are starting to get easier to follow though just sometimes Elder Hammond doesn't really tell me what he wants to do in the lessons so I show up and am a little lost at first but im able to kinda come back and follow along. we still aren't teaching many lessons from preach my gospel which is basically all I know how to do so that's why its kinda rough, but im workin. All of the members think im like 25 cause I guess I look really old cause of my jaw line or somethin is what I got outta their hand signals, and then my voice too ha-ha.

But this week somethin kinda bad happened.. I got pretty sick Friday and Saturday, I just had a lot of stomach problems and body aches and absolutely no energy so it was pretty rough but im startin to get better so that's good. I dono how I got sick cause my comp didn't get sick or anything. We need to be really careful though I guess denghai is starting to come up a lot here and one elder has it. and my ankles are always bitten every night even though I wear those yellow things on both ankles but whatever I will start tryin more stuff out to be careful of it.

We haven't done much service here yet on Saturday we tried to get like a 150 pound thing of bananas down from the tree and that was the biggest joke, most awkward thing ever. The tree was like 20 feet tall and was growing over some power lines so yeah just really frustrating and the only people there were us and the lady and then Hermano Nieto who is a mute so he can say sí and no and that's it so not much help for me but elder Hammond gets him. Anyways we tried for like an hour and a half and then had to give up and go do our lessons I felt bad but I was so tired and sick I was just like please hermana we gotta go and she was just like ok so that was that.

And not many new investigators this week. We actually had to drop Fernando the 14 year old who was ready for baptism cause the gangs were following him and his brother again so that was sad. And then Hermano Julio who is the drunk, we found out that he drank this Friday night and last Friday night so he lied to us. But he still comes to church and we see him every night or almost every night so hopefully we can keep him away from it cause i know he wants to change, Satan just has a tight grip on him. But this week we have a lesson planned with a new family we contacted and we feel pretty good about it so fingers are crossed. Oh yeah this week my comp did some bus preaching so next time we do that its my turn he said..super scary huh ha im way nervous..but that way isn't the most effective its just an easy way to get a lot of LPEs.

I think that about covers my week though..glad im talkin to you guys right now haha pretty sweet but hey this week read in third Nephi about Christ's ministry in the Americas and really focus on chapter 18 I think about the sacrament and how important it is. its pretty awesome! but I love you all and am praying always!

¡Que Dios les bendiga!

Elder Jorgensen

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

The house on the left is probably the nicest in our area.

This is where our Zone Leaders Live. It's real nice there.

Me standing at the top of Jardin pronounced (Hardeen)  It over looks the whole city of San Salvador

We got to order Pizza Hut when my companion and another elder met their 1 year mark!

August 13, 2012

Wow another week down already! I seriously cant believe its been a week since i was sittin here emailing but anyways this week was pretty crazy. Not a whole lot of sweet stories except  my trainers and another kid in our house hit there year mark, so we ordered pizza hut!!! Holy crap that made me miss American food haha but it was cool. This week we dominated in lessons, we had 19 lessons with members present and 5 new invesitigators found and 140 lpe (street contacts) so yeah we were busy. My companion talks about home a lot and it kinda makes me mad cause then i just start thinking about home and im like dangit dude. But its alright we still get along really good.

So our house i guess i didnt talk about it last week but its supposedly like one of the biggest houses in the mission besides the assistants house. Coulda fooled me though our bedroom fits two twin beds and two of my luggage bags and thats it not a single thing else, then our kitchen is a sink and like two feet of counter space and we have another table set up too. oh and that spacious mini fridge haha. then theres the other zone leaders rooms and our bathroom which is pretty fancy ha but not really. Dont get me wrong though im not complaining at all cause ive seen the members houses, or tin shacks and so i know how good we have it and how blessed we are to live in America.

This week my trainer has tried to involve me more in the lessons so that was helpful cause i felt like my spanish was starting to slow down a lot and it was when i started talkin, so embarassing haha. But im tryin and prayin, i can understand a little more of what people are sayin but talkin or speakin will take a lot longer. sorry my typing and grammar is not that good in all my emails ha but anyways im doin really good.

We had to postpone our baptism we had from last saturday cause he used to drink coffee, he's 12. But he has no problems with anything its just a mission rule you have to wait a month after you keep all the commandments and word of wisdom stuff like that. Then we found an alcoholic this week he was a reference from someone i dono who. But he has a wife and she was baptized when she was 8 but never active and they have 2 kids. So anyways we went over and talked to him didnt even really have a lesson he just shared with us his desires to quit drinking and since that day he has gone almost 8 days without drinking which is amazing because he was drunk all the time and he came to church on sunday with his family!! They looked like some of the best members in the ward so hopefully they keep it up! Then we have one other kid Fernando he is 14 and has had some problems with the gangs i wont go into detail but i couldnt even begin to imagine living his life, its rough but his date is set for later this month so thats awesome! Oh and our church attendance this week was even lower than last week we had 67... but i guess like 20 go to the other ward cause they like the people better and the time better, ours starts at 8.

The weather here has been way nice its been cloudy but not rainy so it only gets like right around 90 except its a lot more humid and kinda rainy off and on during the day. We walked just barely under 50 miles this week but im countin more like 60 because the hills are freakin ridiculous!! Pictures just dont do them justice ha. Last week i sent letters to nate and kaulin but i had a different address for nate so i dono if he will get it and im mad cause it was like a four page letter. But anyways sounds like home is same old same old which is good ha keep that list goin of movies and music i have to watch and listen to.

The food has been decent im currently at 31 pupusas so i should eat just a couple thousand on the mish ha. But anything you wanna send, more granola bars and stuff cause some nights we dont have dinners planned and my companion isnt big into making anything or buying groceries really for dinner so i eat like 6 bars and some poptarts ha. I have a feeling i will be a trainer of my area when i get done with training cause my comp has been here for almost 10 months so im freakin out right now about that haha. Just where everything is and stuff and lessons and the language! So thats a little scary but i know the Lord will help me with everything i stand in need of if i am obedient. Thats about all i got goin on now though i love you and pray for you always. ¡Que Dios le bendiga!

Monday, August 6, 2012

August 6, 2012 El Salvador


Hola from El Salvador!

Holy cow what a change it was from the mtc to the field. So many things have happened and i´ve only been in the field for five days!! But anyways I'll try to remember everything that has happened first off my mission president. He is pretty cool and has a way powerful testimony, he is pretty strict though well actually he is very strict but that's alright it sounds like this mission really needed him because it was kinda a wicked mission. So there's a lot of extra rules but we are being exactly obedient so the blessings should just start rollin in haha jk.

My area is called Cuscatlán it is outside of San Salvador but not very far we are still very close. And this area has the steepest and most hills out of all the areas, that's my personal opinion and other missionaries opinions as well haha. And it is poor here lots of tin shacks and just tiny cinder block houses its so sad. The people here are nice but very sinful I was just like holy crap people come on. And they aren't nearly as accepting of the gospel as i thought they would be and almost none are willing to change who they are, its heart breaking.

Alright next off my companion you'll never believe it but my companion is Elder Michael Hammond from Montpelier, Idaho!! Can you believe that?! But he is a way good trainer i am his fourth kid in the mission field so he knows what he's doin which is great cause i can't understand hardly anything that people are saying. He has helped me a lot to stay focused and not miss home so much and just helped me with everything its hard to explain in just an email. But i really like him so that's good, the only thing that kinda gets irritating is he does tend to talk himself up quite a bit from like high school and stuff which is fine I guess, I just don't care to hear it sometimes ha. But anyways with the language I can tell the difference between words a lot better it doesn't just sound like one mumbled long word anymore. But i have no idea of what each word means so i just smile and nod and look from them to my companion and back to them, smile, and repeat, occasionally i will bear my testimony. I have given the first lesson once and then shared like favorite scriptures a few times but its hard. And it gets really frustrating but I'm trying not to get too down. But its been good. We do about 25 LPE which are some words in Spanish i don't know what they stand for street contacting ha-ha. Elder Hammond pretty much does all of them. I've done a few but they're pretty shaky, i get nervous trying to translate and then my Spanish really starts to suck ha-ha. But its alright.

My first night here we were doing our last lesson and it started pouring and neither of us had our umbrellas or jackets so the guy gave us some sacks for our scriptures and we start booking it home. We are at the bottom of a dead end road and there is a stalled taxi at the bottom so me and my companion push this taxi like 300 yards in 6 inches of rushing water uphill, and im serious not exaggerating at all. So we get him to the top of the hill and turned goin down a different hill and then popped the clutch and it started up. so then we gave each other a high five and finished running home. I was so freaking exhausted after that run ha im out of shape big time.

Another pretty awesome story is we had two baptisms on Saturday a 25 year old mom Claudia and her 12 year old son sad is that but so happy for them. Their testimonies are so powerful its awesome! They are gonna be solid members too so that's even awesome! And then we have one more baptism this week Miguel's friend Raul. But other than that we cant talk to anyone like zero people. We spent a lot of time with less actives this week too we had 14 lessons with less active families and none of them came to church. Our church attendance was 73 before the Sacrament and 83 after. And our ward membership is 400 so that tells ya a little about our ward. Elder Hammond said this week was kinda bad usually its around 100 but still i was like  holy crap. and he said it was terrible before he came to this area seven months ago. So well keep workin.

Everything else is really good though, we have a mini fridge and a hot disgusting shower. The weather here is very nice a cool 95 degrees in the house during study time plus humidity so our fan really makes it just nice and chilly..... that was a joke i sweat like well i don't even know how to describe how much i sweat. I drink probably 4 gallons of water a day and never go to the bathroom ha ha  freakin ridiculous.

But its all good here and sounds like home is wonderful too i love you all so much and hope you all are all healthy and well and loving this gospel as much as me!