Monday, August 7, 2017

May: Matrimonios, Milagros y Mother's Day

We are already half way through the month of may and it is making for a pretty awesome Month here in Matagalpa! I recognize it's been a few weeks since my last weekly update, and I apologize, but its just due to lack of time. As such a brief summary of the people we are teaching will have to do to bring things up to date. I have now been in Matagalpa for a full 5 weeks meaning this change is already coming to an end and I will likely be getting a new companion. The last 5 weeks have been pretty awesome and in this month especially we have really started to see the fruits of our work and Matagalpa is growing on me more and more. 

To start the month we had the Wedding and Baptism of Noel and Elsa. The wedding was a bit of a headache on our part because we had to put ourselves incharge of the whole event planning in the church and trying to get members to help out. I don't really have much experience planning a wedding, but all things considered it went pretty well and they we so excited to be able to take those two important steps in there lives. They have both been warmly accepted into the ward and are having a hard time accepting the fact that they have to wait a whole year until they enter the temple together. Since their baptism, they got the attention of lots of friends and family and they have been inviting tons of people to get to know the church. We have already started teaching one of Noels brothers and his friend and two of Elsa's daughters from her previous marriage have been to church with them twice now. They have such a strong desire to share the gospel because they have such fresh conversion stories! I'll attach some fotos with them below. 

Other than their family we have been working with several other really awesome Families. One is a Family of 6 and they have been super solid. Xiomara and her three daughters have been to church every sunday for the last like 4 weeks straight now without fail. Xiomara and her oldest daughter, also named Xiomara and Liz are all preparing for baptism next weekend. They are all super awesome and love church so much. Xiomara is way excited to be able to be baptized and they are all ready, but her husband has been a little bit of a roadblock, because he is buddhist so he doesn't believe in God, nor does he believe in marriage. We have been working really hard with the whole family (except the oldest son who lives with his girlfriend and works from 6am-10pm everyday..) and we have really seen a major change in all of them including Jose the buddhist and he is now willing to get married to support his wife in her beliefs! His wife hopes he will continue to open his heart to the gospel and he really has been alot more receptive even though we have basically zero experience teaching atheists (very rare in Nicaragua). It also doesnt help that he studies every Sunday all day. We have really become close friends with the whole family though and it will be awesome to see them make these important decisions in their lives. 

A third Awesome Family we have been working with is a part member Family that is super big and is super close with their extended family. UNfortunately they live all spread out, but we have been able to teach Magdiel and Tatiana who are a newly married young Family as well as Tatiana's Sister, Mara. Each of them have been facing lot's of opposition, but they have been strong despite the trials and are preparing to get baptized the first weekend of june. 

Before concluding I must mention Benjamin who is preparing to be baptized this week! He is a youth who we found one day outside of his house and since then he has been to almost every activity we invite him to and we learned that his mom actually had met with the mission previously and remembered alot about the church. She has been difficult to teach though because she works in Managua all week long, so is never home. She fully supports her sons baptism though, so he will be baptized next weekend. 

In General things here have been really good and we are seeing tons of growth in the Yaguares Ward. We now have like 4 sundays where at least 10 investigators have come to church which has been way awesome and has really helped the members have a greater desire to bring their friends and several members even decide to just come support us in our Gospel Principles class on Sundays. As far as other news we are about to enter the rainy season, which will likely be pretty strong since we are up in the mountains. The good news is in my area, we souldn't have to much troubles with flooded streets, because none of the streets are flat haha. Anyways that's about all for now. I will try to get more updates out, but in the meantime enjoy some photos attatched below. 

Happy Mothers Day to all Mothers!

Elder Hamson

The first photo is with Noel and Elsa before the wedding at the church. The second is them right before the baptism and the last photo is of some of the Elders in the zone at Hermana Reina's house doing some grilling on Pday. 

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