Monday, April 25, 2016

Seventeen Weeks

Well first off, I have my story of the bikes for the week: My crankarm broke (this is the 3rd time that the same part broke) and so my companion towed me with some rope that I was carrying (I learned to come prepared now haha) all the way to the bike shop so that they could fix it. It was pretty fun and I got a cool picture of it. The crankarms are now black instead of the polished chrome that they always were before too so that's one more part that's tricked out on my bike now. Yeah I'm cool, but I can't help it. Sorry. (Also included is a picture of how my bike looks in it's current condition, BMX handlebars and all.)

Next, we have been having a lot more success this week and I've been able to feel the spirit in the work a lot as well. We tried meeting up with one less active member that said she wants to start coming back to church to teach her in the chapel, but she didn't show up, so we called her to see where she was. Turns out that she was sick, but we ended up reading the introduction to the Book of Mormon with her over the phone and it was a pretty cool experience. We've also taught a lot more lessons this week compared to the last few (12 versus 7-8) and I really enjoyed it.

We also visited a few people that we haven't seen in a while, one of them being Teresa, the japonesa that loves when we visit. It'd been three weeks since we had seen her and she gave us some super nice quality Alfajors (and shared sprite and cookies as always) and we visited with her and her friend Milagros for a while. We then also randomly came across another less active name Hugo who got a divorce with his wife (another less active member) and hasn't been to church in about 3 months but we talked to him for a little over half an hour (just about life and how things are going) and we both felt really good just chatting (him and us) and he showed up to church yesterday on his own, and all the members were super happy to see him and giving him hugs like an old friend they hadn't seen in years. It was awesome. 

And that leads me on to my last Less Active for this week: Hermano Bernadeau. In Argentina, soccer is huge and he is not an exception. He misses sometimes because he coaches soccer on Sundays from time to time, but the catch is that he does it for free in a field by his house (there are random soccer fields everywhere here) to keep kids off the street and some local organizations have caught on to what he is doing and even donated him some jerseys to use with the kids. He also has a lot of young teenage sons (who have a lot of friends that have grown up with them like sons and as such there are a lot of the young boys from the street around his house that he more or less looks after). Recently though, one of those friends has been having serious parenting problems (fights between his mom and dad, who I don't think lived together) but one day his dad starting going after his mom with a knife (and she was stabbed a few times) and he jumped in to help her and got stabbed a couple times himself. As such, the dad is in police custody but the mom and her son are in the hospital and he asked us to pass by because the kid apparently always loved talking with the missionaries. We tried yesterday, but we missed the visiting hours so we are going to try again tomorrow but I really look forward to it. I don't know why, but I always feel the best helping younger/teenage kids, especially here in Argentina when they almost never have a good role model to look up to and really have no vision for their future. It was really awesome the service that Hermano Bernadeau does for all those kids though and just felt like sharing.

That was about it for this week though, other than some random pictures of beautiful sunsets that we have been having and another notice: We are allowed to have DropBox accounts here on this mission and so I will now be backing up ALL my photos to DropBox. I will continue to share specific photos each week in my email, but if you want to comb through the rest, here is the link to view them: 

That also means that if you want to share more pictures or short video clips with me you can upload them to DropBox and share them with me there if they don't fit or work with email.

Other than that, I hope that you all have an awesome week and love you all!


Elder McCollum

P.S. I also made prickly pear jelly to eat with Pancakes out of prickly pear fruit (we found a prickly pear cactus) so there's a picture of that too.

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