Elder Gardner

Elder Gardner will enter the MTC on Wednesday, June 23rd. We will keep this blog up-dated every week with his letters and pictures. If you would like to write to Elder Gardner, please click on the "write a letter" link on the right hand side for directions and his address. If you don't know much about Mormon Missions read the "about missions" page to learn more; it may help you understand some confusing terms in the letters.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Raw fish times two (Parque Chacabuco Week 5)

¡Buen Dia!

Well, I don´t have anything too exciting to report this week. But I got a letter from someone (to protect identities the sender will not be named) who wanted to know more about the food. So I will tell you about I dish I had this week from Peru. It is called serviche (I think that´s how you spell it). On Tuesday all four of the elders in the apartment went to eat with a member from Peru (she runs a restaruant and is a really good cook). When we arrived she was still making the food. They were all talking about it and I heard ´pescado´ a lot so I figured it was fish but it was clearly uncooked. I was wondering how long it would take to bake or fry or whatever cause we didn´t have too long. But then she finished putting in the milk, onions, cilantro, and other stuff and we all sat down to eat without cooking the fish! It was actually pretty good. The texture wasn´t amazing but it tasted good. We had it with rice and potatoes (like every other meal I have here). The next few days three of the four of us had stomach problems but we aren´t sure if that was the cause or not. On Saturday we ate with another Peruvian member and had the same meal, but this time with some sort of pasta instead of rice. So much for the amazing Argentine beef; I get to eat raw fish instead.

Besides eating fish I had one of the best experiences of the mission so far. We went with a member to visit his friend who is less active. The friend was asleep so we talked with his non-member mom instead. She had talked with missionaries a few times before but I guess they didn´t explain too well cause she had a lot of misconceptions (like we worship Joseph Smith, we don´t believe in the Bible, etc). We explained what we really believe for a little bit. She said things like, ¨I need to feel something before I believe.¨ Elder Ludwig started talking about prayer and God and I thought he was going to go into the first lesson when he just stopped and asked, ¨How do you feel right now?¨ She said she felt really good and calm. Then he asked where those feelings come from and she said the heart. Then he asked from whom those feelings come and she thought then said God. So far this is pretty normal, we ask those questions a lot; the only weird part was that it was in the middle of the lesson. Elder Ludwig thought for a second then asked, ¨How do you know they come from God?¨ Then all of a sudden she started crying. I didn´t really know what happened but she felt the spirit pretty strong. When she was able to talk again she kept saying, ¨nunca me pasó jamás.¨ Which pretty much means, ¨I´ve never felt that before.¨ We told her that it was the answer that she was looking for. She said she was definitely going to church. It was pretty awesome. Except that she didn´t go to church; but it was still good.

This Saturday we are going to baptize a nine year old girl. We were also going to baptize a 24 year old man but he didn´t go to church yesterday. It´s pretty frustrating. On Saturday people always say they will go but then on Sunday they never go. Instead we have random people we´ve never met come to church. O well, we just have to work harder.

I´ve officially been here over a month. My Castellano is improving. People can almost always understand me, except for when I ask questions. And I can understand enough to fake my way through a conversation. I still have a long way to go before I´m really comfortable, but it´s a lot better than at first.

So that´s all I got for this week. Happy Birthday Lizzy (a little late, I´m sorry). I can´t believe she is five already. That´s crazy. Have a great week everyone!

Elder Gardner

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