Sunday, March 27, 2016

Great week!

March 23, 2016

Okay so first I want to let you all know a little bit about my area. Navarrete, my area of it anyway, is pretty poor. My area is the poorest and most country of the three other areas here with missionaries. We have a total of like 3 paved roads. Everything is dirt and rock roads for the most part. Most of the houses are wooden houses. Most of which look like shacks. Very humble abodes. Lots of dirt or concrete floors inside. But that's the custom here so it's super normal and the people are just happy with it :) A lot of the time I feel like we are in the middle of the desert. Just the feel of the area and the dirt and houses and stuff make it look like some random town in the middle of the desert. But I love it! It's a super cool area and the members always help us. When I first got here, we didn't have very many people in our teaching pool, but we have just been talking with everyone and inviting them all to church and to hear from us and to be baptized. We have been asking and receiving lots of references for people to visit with and teach. We ask everyone everywhere if we can help them or if they need something or have a service or project we could do for them. And now we have lots of more people and have found some solid potential people to progress. In every area I have people who I am so close with and who I was sad to say goodbye to. I am already finding and seeing who those people are and will be from this area. The youth, especially the young men, are super strong and leave with us a lot and there are lots of them. I love that. I love working with the young men.
So days like yesterday are days that I just love. From 3-5pm we are still having trouble finding people in their houses and most of our appointments fall through. But from like 5-9pm, we are just booked solid and literally have to run to our next appointments. Yesterday we had a long lesson that went a little over time and so we had to hurry over to a young man's house from the ward named Jose. When we got there, he was not ready and he wanted to shower super quick and change. We were way late but needed him so we could teach a few people because we can't teach women alone without another male present. So we gave him 4 minutes. 10 minutes later, we finally left his house and booked it to our next lesson which was super far away in a really country area/neighborhood where we found some cool people the other day. I am pretty sure there are more cows than people in that area/part of town, but the people were super cool so we had to go back to teach them. We were like jogging with our bags and everything up and down dirt/rock hills to get there in time. Luckily there was lots of breeze and I didn't forget to put on my deodorant ;) We had a solid lesson with that family, unfortunately the dad was working so he was the only one of them family not there. Then we got on a small Dominican bus with like 40 other people (not an exaggeration) to another area far away for two other lessons. Then we got back late at night. It was a fun, busy, solid day and all the lessons were great. I loved the fact that we were in such a hurry that we had to literally run, haha. It was great! My feet were sore. I actually have another foot blister that peeled off.
So that random guy that I called last week on accident and invited to church CAME!! He showed up and traveled like 2 hours to get here!! Crazy! He is so prepared! He seriously is golden! But he lives so far away and can only come down on Sundays for church, so it's going to be a challenge to teach him. But he used to live here and knows quite a few people and members of the ward and really wants to get baptized! So I think that it is a for sure possibility. Literally the coolest miracle though how I came into contact with him and that sparked his desire and interest to come and everything. Way awesome. We also had lots of other people in church who we visit and teach. We are seeing lots of success!! We put 3 baptism dates this week, they will be a challenge to achieve, but we will work hard and sacrifice and do all we can to make it happen! This is the most crucial transfer for me because it will mark the success we have the next two transfers and those will be with my mission son so I want it to be the best they possibly can be.
The mission is so great! 

Elder Greer
My super dope scripture bag I had made a few weeks back.

Loving the New Area!

Pictures of My Peeps in Pueblo Nuevo

March 9, 2016

My people!! These are my family in Pueblo Nuevo. I honestly love them all so much and am way sad to leave them!

The old lady trying to kiss me is Mamá. She was just posing I'm this picture, but when I told her I was leaving she really did try to kiss me! Haha. She attacked me with a hug and I screamed and turned the other way as she tried to kiss me hahaha. I was like, Mamá!! You can't kiss me! Or hug me! Haha I love you too but it's against the rules! But she didn't care haha. She is everyone's mamá, but she insists that she is my girlfriend hahahaha. She made me spaghetti last night when I said goodbye and cried a little.

The two girls and the mom are the neighbors of the Pueblo Nuevo elders and are members and cook for them literally every meal. They are so good to us and Rosy, the mom, is our mother! She said that me and Castillo are her favorite and is so sad we are both gone now.
It was definitely a hard goodbye. I'm gonna miss her a lot!




Last week in the office

 March 5, 2016

Sorry for not writing last week, I just didn't have much time and it wasn't the most interesting week anyway. But something cool that happened last week was that I had two super cool meetings with phone companies because I am in charge of all the phones in my mission and President asked me to basically work my magic and see if I could figure out a better plan for our mission and how to save money. So I made some calls and organized two meetings. One with the company we have now, and the other with the rival company. It's basically like Verizon and AT&T. So with the company we have, I had them explain to us all the feature of our plan in details, asked them many questions, many of which were questions my president wanted to know, and I told them the complaints we have and reasons for why we are thinking of switching to the rival company. There were two representatives from the company, my companion and I, and two representatives from the church headquarters from the Capital. They were basically like my lawyers, hahaha. One of the guys was super clear with me before the meeting that all questions I had, I had to ask him first and any questions the people from the company asked me, I had to look at him first for approval to answer. It was super weird haha, but it was because he was negotiating and stuff and he is specifically in charge of doing that. It was pretty cool and interesting haha. In the second meeting, it was way more relaxed and it was basically a representative of the rival company explaining to me her offer to us that was a plan customized specifically for our mission and the info I gave her a few days in advance. And then I got my business man personality on and started negotiating and telling her the things I liked and the things I felt could be better and the things the company we have now does better for us. So then she made even more offers and honestly gave us such a great offer by the time we finished. The other two missions have that same company and similar phone plans, so she really wants us to have it as well. It was a total of 4 hours! The meetings lasted that long haha. So now we will go back to the company we have and tell them to make us a better deal, or we are going to switch probably. Then I brought all the info to President this week and now it is up to him to decide what to do. So yeah, you can say I am totally a business man now ;) No, but after, I was thinking and thought how cool it was/is that I am able to participate in these types of things and learn all this. It really is the best of both worlds because that was all in the morning, and then in the night, we are out in the streets of our area like normal missionaries preaching and teaching and helping others come unto Christ. Pretty cool. I also thought it was way cool that Heavenly Father has blessed me and blessed me so much especially during the meetings with the gift of tongues. It was a super professional couple of meetings and the language isn't nearly the same that we hear and speak every day in the streets and with the people in our area. Especially because there is so much slang and weird words here. So I thought it was so awesome that I was able to understand everything perfectly and speak really well to them and negotiate business-wise and all.
So our area has been a mess this past month because the whole month of February, it is the month of the carnival. Basically every Sunday the whole month, everyone and their mother goes to the carnival. But it is no Del Mar Fair, it is like crazy! It's not quite as bad as Brazil during their carnival season, but it's up there! The people go crazy, drink lots, do bad things, less clothes on the women. I could go on... Just not a good environment for missionaries. Or really anyone. So last Sunday was the last and biggest Carnival Sunday of the year because it was their Independence day. You can only imagine... Our numbers were very low! Doesn't help that the carnival is held in the dead center of my area!... That really was the big problem for us. There were roads we could not even go down. At one point, we had to stay inside the house of a new investigator after ending the lesson early because we literally couldn't hear ourselves talk because the carnival isn't just in one spot, but they march down every road in our whole area. Insanity. But thank heavens it is all over now!
But something awesome was that Teobaldo, the old man who at first progressed so well but then got sick and for a while didn't progress, he got better recently and we invited him to church and HE CAME!! We were totally not expecting him, but on Sunday morning when we entered the Sacrament room, there he was sitting next to a member he knows!! He came all by himself too! We were so happy! And he seemed to really love it! So I am way excited to see him tonight to see if he will come again tomorrow. Pray for him!!
Our other investigators are doing alright, but Carlos (the guy who got hit by a car and broke his leg) and his wife Maria are doing really well! Carlos has all the time in the world to read now because he cant leave his house, so he promised us to read everything we give him. And he has been doing really well with it. We asked them what they understood about what they read about the restoration and they had a pretty good understanding of it. So now it is just up to them to find out for themselves through prayer, faith, and searching the scriptures if it is true or not. We will set a goal for baptism with them hopefully tonight. Just a goal though, I don't want them to be freaked out or anything. Just a goal so they can work to get their answer before the date we pick for them.
So this is my last week here in this area and as the office elder. I am so excited to leave haha. I know that sounds bad, but after 8 and a half months, it's time. I'll miss Betsy, the truck we get as office elders and AP's, but Betsy will be in good hands with Elder Reeves. I am so stoked to see what Heavenly Father has in store for me and the people he has prepared for me to find and help live the gospel and have greater happiness and more blessings in their lives. I have been stressing out and way nervous about where I will be sent and stuff. I feel like I am receiving my mission call again! haha. But I fasted and prayed about it a ton and I feel confident that wherever I end up is where I need to be and I will grow the most and find the people who are ready to accept this true and wonderful gospel. I am so stoked and ready to keep giving it my all, even without the current responsibilities I have right now. I know I will be so blessed if I do. I only have three transfers left, So I will make them count! Some missionaries start to get trunky and think about home when they are this close to it, but I refuse to be that way. Don't even talk to me about home because I am already here. The fire is large and it's only getting larger baby!
My PDay will be on Wednesday again. So until then, This is Elder Greer signing out.
Much love. Wish me luck!

Elder Greer