Tuesday, July 16, 2013

July 15, 2013

President Smartt,
            This week has been great. At the beginning of the week we were stuck down in Roseau because of the tropical storm that was hitting. We got back to Portsmouth on Wednesday and went to work.
            We have been trying to meet with the members in our branch to strengthen them and their families, and ultimately strengthening the branch as a whole. We met with the Lo family 2 weeks ago and when we were leaving, they thanked us and said that they really needed to have a nice discussion of the gospel. He said that he hadn’t really had a chance to do so since his mission. It must have helped them a lot, because they had us over again this week! They like having the missionaries in their house because they can feel the spirit and like to focus on what’s really important in life, and have a time where they can take their minds off of medical school. Their children like having us there too, and their parents like to have us be examples for them. We also met with two other families this week, the Russell’s and the Clyde’s. It is helping us a lot to meet with the members because when they trust us, they are more willing to work with us. We have been getting a lot of help from the members here and we are so grateful for that.
            We had a great lesson with one of our investigators, Peter, on Wednesday. His fiancé, Gina, was also there with us. Gina was the person who referred us to Peter. Gina is a inactive member, with all of her active family members living in the Salt Lake area. She was helping us answer some of Peter’s questions and helping to explain some things too. It was great to see her opening up and sharing some of her testimony of the gospel. Peter has been opening up more and more as well. At first, he was very hesitant about the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith. He was almost telling us that there’s no way Joseph Smith was a good man and that our church has “shady” history and all other kinds of stuff. This week, however, he accepted a book of mormon and was really excited about a scripture I shared with him. I shared Alma 26:12 and bore my testimony on it and he said “wow, that’s awesome. You’ll have to write that down for me.” It is amazing to see how the spirit works and how it can help to soften the hearts of others.
            Kelly came to church this week! We were so excited that she came. We met with her on Saturday and had a great lesson. She was very apologetic for last week and said that she knows that Satan was trying to get her to stop meeting with us and to stop reading the book of mormon because he knows that she’s doing a good thing. She had a question about where the book of mormon came from and what not, so we were able to explain it to her and help her to understand better. She said “OH! That makes so much sense now!” It was amazing. She also looked at us and said “You know you guys, you should really come by twice a week now, instead of just once. I’ll make more time for you guys because I need to know everything before I get baptized!”
She came to church on Sunday and loved it. She was so excited the whole time. You could really tell that she was paying attention and wanting to understand because in Gospel Principles she was asking great questions and also sharing her thoughts and opinions. When I went and sat down next to her to explain that the last hour would be Relief Society/Priesthood she turned and looked at me and said “What are you doing in here, you’re not a woman! Go to your men’s class!” She already knew! She was able to meet a lot of the branch members and really liked them. She has a baptismal date for the third of August. We are so excited for her and the progress she has been making.
I know that the Lord is mindful of us and that He blesses us according to our obedience. I know that this is his work, and that there isn’t anyone else in the world that wants us to succeed as much as he does. When we are successful, he is successful in bringing to pass His work and His glory (Moses 1:39). I know He lives and loves us, and I share that in the name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Elder Nielson

Alright, dad said he wants me to send my letter to president to you guys and that way i dont have to repeat stuff.
Anyways, Happy July Monday! Dominica has the most random holidays here. Today is called July monday. it's a holiday. why is it a holiday and what does it represent? That's a great question.
The storm last weekk was totally wimpy. on tuesday it rained real hard and was pretty windy in the morning, but other than that, not much happened. We're all good. Just cockroaches and humidity as per ushe. oh, the storm totally made it way hotter here. It was so miserably hot this week. Im pretty sunburned on my arms and neck.  
I feel like i dont have anything to really talk about this week. i wrote it all to president. 
OH! just kidding. totally have some crazy news. so president smartt took all of the elders off the islands. ALL of them. except for us. we're the only two out here in the islands now. all the other islands have sisters now. he said that he made all the changes in the islands and now they will be the same for SIX MONTHS. So looks like im not going to have a thanksgiving, christmas, or a birthday this year. well, i guess i dont really ever get a birthday anyways, no matter where I am. but yeah, looks like we'll be here for a really long time. I'll be an old man by the time that I'll get back to puerto rico. It's funny, though, because i feel like my spanish is improving while I am here, even though im not speaking it all the time. I speak to Fournier in spanish a lot of the time though, and i study in spanish sometimes. like this morning, i only had my spanish stuff with me and i studied for an hour and a half in spanish. Fue chevere. no tuve ningunas problemas. esoty tratando de aprender tan mucho como posible durante el tiempo que tengo con mi companero puertorriqueno. El esta aprendiendo mucho ingles de mi, y estoy aprendiendo espanol de el. Es perfecto!
Gracias por sus cartas y por su amor. Tengan una semana buenisima y siempre clamen al Senor. El nos ama y quiere que hagamos lo justo.
La escritura de la semana es helaman 7:16. Cuando la lei esta semana me asombro. Siempre necesitamos seguir al Senor. No podemos ganar la felicidad por las cosas del mundo. siempre necesitamos obedecer y ganaremos la felicidad eterna.
Como dice Nike, HAZLO.
Elder Nielson

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