Yep, that's right. I'm up here just chilling in my new area called Barranca. It's like a port city, kind of like Huacho where I used to serve, but a little smaller. It's super awesome though and I'm loving it so much. There's actually a fair amount of green and I almost fainted when we went down a road lined with trees and corn fields. I'M SO HAPPY!!!!!! Really it's just amazing to be doing the Lord's work, but it's even that much cooler here in Barranca.
I'm in a branch for the first time in my mission, but there are more people that go to church than some of the wards I served in so that's cool. Not that there are so many people, but I was in some wards that shouldn't have really been wards...welcome to Perú.
The people here are really cool too. I just feel that they are so ready to hear the message. I feel so blessed to be here and am going to give it my all. The members here are pretty cool too and we had an awesome family night last night with like 20 people and had fun playing games and everything. I just feel so ready to go out and conquer the world. We're bringing back the elephants.
About Los Próceres in Los Olivos. I'm gonna miss that ward so much and all the amazing people that I got to meet there. We had a really special family night where two of the coolest families (the Santiagos and the Leons) and a couple of other people came and just said all sorts of nice things about me. I really haven't heard stuff like that in a really long time and it touched me a lot. When I thanked them all I started crying because I realized something. When I opened my mission call I couldn't say where I was going because I was crying and my mom just kept asking me where. I tried, but it wouldn't come out. I felt such a deep love for the Peruvian people even though I didn't know them. Well, when I was talking last week I realized that I was crying for those people for the family Santiago and the family Leon. They among lots of other people are the reason I cried. I didn't know them here in the earth, but my spirit definitely knew them and I'm so grateful that I came here to Perú where I have been so blessed to come to love so many people.
Things were kind of crazy this week and we're getting into the swing of things with my companion Elder Garcia. He's from Cuzco and is a really cool guy. We've got some great investigators and are helping a lot of less actives come back to the church. There was a really cool guy that went yesterday named Roberto and we're gonna help him. He has a great testimony, but needs to work on his conversion obviously because he's not going to church. He wants to do what's right though and just be expecting some miracle stories for next week.
My spiritual experience for the week was definitely yesterday. We had a noche de hogar and the family had assigned me to give the message. The branch president had told us that we were going to talk in sacrament meeting, but then said it was for the Relief Society so I had prepared something and felt like I could share that in the noche de hogar. There were quite a few investigators that went to the noche de hogar and it was special to feel the Spirit. I talked about how in this life there are trials for all of us and we can decide how we take them. We can ask God to take them out of our lives, or we can ask Him to give us strength, faith, and patience to be able to make it through. I've learned that so many times in my life, but last night was extra special and I know it's what God wanted me to talk about. It was cool because I was kind of bummed that I didn't get to give my talk, but then it turned out even better in the noche de hogar.
I was reading in the scriptures and somehow ended up in John 9 this morning and that chapter is so awesome. A gem if I say so myself. You should all go check it out. That blind man sure had faith and I want to be like him.
Thanks for all of your great examples. I love the mission so much and am praying for all of you everyday. Have the best week ever!!!!!!!
Love your friend in the land of green (as green as it gets),
Elder Aaron Micah Wheatley
ps. We don't have running water so I've been showering from a bucket this week. It's cool and cold at the same time. Gotta love it!!!!!!!!
|Throwing the 'ol pig skin around -- what a nice break on P-day|
|Just chillin' in the park|
|Lovin' the BBQ sauce|
|Service Project -- moving bricks up the human chain|
|Carrying heavy buckets up the hill. SO COOL!!!!!!!That's something special in Perú.|
|Don't know what's up with my eyes but it was YUMMY Pizza|
|My family in Peru -- I'm going to miss them!|
|Here's Barranca -- Car ride with actual greenery outside|
|Eating some crab -- good stuff.|