General Conference was great! It was a little different than normal, but I am excited about all the new changes. Everyone in the room went crazy when they announced that a temple was going to be built in Salta, Argentina, Haha! It is too bad that it is not going to be finished being built while I am in still in the mission. My favorite talks at Conference were by Elder Godoy, Elder Holland, and Russell M. Nelson when he gave his longer talk. There is a lot happening to prepare the saints for harder times. They talked a lot about service and personal revelation in this conference. President Nelson talked about receiving revelation to be able to separate our selves from the world. It makes you really think that being a member of the church isn´t just a hobby, it is the most important thing in the whole world and we need to not let worldly things get in the way of our personal salvation.
Yeah, when they said that all the quorum presidencies were being released and that it was going to be one big Elders Quorum I was like, well my Dad just barely got called to one of those positions in the High Priest Group Leadership, so he is being released. He said in his last letter to me that it was one of the shortest callings he’s ever had. Haha! I like the idea of “ministering” instead of Home Teaching and Visiting Teaching! That bumper sticker that Elder Holland saw was funny that said; “If I honk, you’ve been home taught!” Hahaha. We need to try not to be quite that way!
The zone conferences here were good, they were a lot less busy than normal, but it was really fun to be with all of the other missionaries. President Patania spoke about how we need to work faster and better because the number of missionaries is going way down and the areas we serve in are getting bigger and bigger. The mission is losing missionaries like crazy! Back in the day there were like 250 missionaries and now there are 136 and it is estimated that in July there will only be around 116 missionaries.
I have an idea of who will be my replacement but it is not set in stone yet. If it is who I think it is, it is going to be fun! To me, it doesn´t matter who it is, I am just really excited to get the new guy in here to train. I will train the new elder taking my spot in the office for like a month and then I will be sent out! I am super excited to get back out there in the field. I am pretty nervous for where I will go next!
G. is good. We had a lesson last night. He wants to be baptized but he is afraid to commit he wants to wait longer and we are trying to help him to not wait so long, but I think he will eventually get baptized. He is ready. He watched General Conference and he felt the spirit and he said that he feels bad when he doesn´t read the scriptures, so he understands that what he is doing is good and that it is helping him. I can´t wait to see if he gets baptized while I am here, but if it is later I am still counting it as a baptism, Haha. He is super awesome!
Yeah, we ate chicken and mashed potatoes for General Conference and it was really good. We didn’t have the dinner at the Mission President’s house. We cooked it in the zone leaders pension and I drove the truck back and forth taking all the chicken to the church. It was fun to drive again! I am getting pretty good at shifting a manual now. The trip to the zoo was going to be today, but it was canceled because of sick missionaries that the Mission President needs to take care of. There are a lot of missionaries that have gone home from being sick and we are kinda close with some others. The mission is slowly getting smaller. It is a hard mission.
Anyway, I am excited to get some souvenirs from some elders that are serving in Estanislao del Campo. That is my dream area. I want to go serve there so bad. That is where they found a tribe of people that had been following everything in the church and reading the Book of Mormon and saving up tithing and when the missionaries finally found them they ended up baptizing like one hundred people and now every Sunday like 140 people go to church there, which is bigger than any other place in the whole mission. I am in the stake house in the large city of Resistencia and only 70 people come to our ward, here. The people that live way out there don´t even have a church building, it is just a roof overhead. It is a place called El Potrillo and it is really far away, but the elders in Estanislao get to go there every week. The native people there harvest the Palo Santo wood and make things out of it. The Elders have to use a translator to talk to the people there. It is so cool. I really want to go!!!! It is beautiful where it is too!
So this week has been good. I have read the scriptures more this week and I also wrote in my journal everyday. I am excited to go back to being a full-time missionary for a while. I have liked being the financial secretary and I have learned a lot, but I am also here to feel the spirit and to be a missionary and going back out into the field, I am going to take advantage of every moment of that. I want you to know that I have done cool stuff in the office and I wouldn’t have chosen to do anything else if I was given the choice to do it again, I would.
This week we went to Corrientes to give out some more of the washing machines and dryers, that we’d purchased. That road trip there is where I took most of the pictures of the bridge that I am sending to you.
Love you and miss you. I pray for all of you everyday!
Elder Nate Pendleton
Watchin' General Conference....
Pictures of the Bridge from Resistencia to Corrientes...
Juggling in the middle of traffic !?!?!?
Flag of Argentina...