Dear family and Friends,
This week has been absolutely exhausting and insane. I got a new companion here in the offices and so I have to teach him constantly, but we also had changes and i am one of the two that can drive. So I had to drive people around till 3:00 in the morning to the airport because the missionaries going home lost their seats. American Airlines did something wrong and didn´t want anyone to find out. So they offered two missionaries of ours 800 dollars if they switch their flight to the next day and we couldn´t switch. So then they tell them within the last 5 minutes that their documents aren´t vaild when we had people going home all day and their documents worked. So President got super mad and asked, so are those seats filled after they missed the flight and they said yes, but they didn´t find out till like 5 minutes before they closed the gate what documents they had, and if they were valid. So obviously everything was a lie about the documents not working, they just had to kick us off because they overbooked. So we got two emergency flights from Salt Lake for 3 hours later and we finally went home at 3:00 AM and we started taking missionaries to the airport at 7 AM that same morning. So it was a really really really long day. To top that off, that was the day after we stayed up till 4:00 AM working 20 hours straight on preparing documents for new missionaries and preparing the church for changes.
We had a few moments in the offices to do our normal duties and during that, I completely lost it. I just sat there staring at the screen with my mouth open and nothing happened because I couldn´t think with so little sleep. Then another one started lauging at me and I started to laugh and all the sudden I was crying and laughing. I think I would consider that a breakdown caused by lack of sleep. So the APs told me and the secretary to go sleep on the floor in the church and I don´t really remember much more. But needless to say, it was an experience that I won´t forget soon.
Now the big problem is with all the work for the changes this week, I had no time to pay the rents of the 85 houses we have in the mission and the area offices were closed for the holidays, so I can´t ask for the money to do that. So now I don´t have the 45,000 dollars I need to pay for all the houses and the deadline is very very soon. So I guess I should just pray that missionaries don´t get kicked out of their houses or homeowners don´t threaten to take away the mission home. Our guarantee says they can take the mission home if we fail to pay so I am praying that the homeowners didn´t actually read the contract and start to do that.
One time the missionaies didn´t send their water bill so we didn´t pay it for two months and then I got an email from our lawyer that we have to pay the bill that instant because the homeowner was already threatening to cut the water of the mission home. I don´t think President would appreciate that so I ran to bank really quick to pay that. Good experience most definitely.
So, in total, I really hope I can pay all these rents before deadlines and nothing insane happens this week. Wish me luck!
Sadly no opportunities to leave and work but I think we can this week or the next. But we have a crazy new iniciative in this area of south america where we don´t really dount numbers anymore like the rest of the world. They have kicked up the pressure on baptizing even more. Now the number of baptisms, confirmations, baptismals dates put, and investigators are the only numbers we verify every week. Before there was like 20 didn´t things we counted to show how we are working and if we are working effectively but now there is four. And they all directly apply to baptism. Nothing pertaining to less actives, recent converts, lessons taught, references recieved or contacted etc. Just baptism, baptism baptism. Crazy no? I am actually quite excited though because now less missionaries will focus on getting high numbers, but rather focus on these people and how to help them make their first covenant with God. That has been a problem for a really really long time. If you didn´t get high numbers, the leaders would always get worried and pressure you more and more so I think this will be really really good. I believe Argentina, Paraguay, and us (Uruguay) are the only ones in the world doing this so let´s see how it works! 2015 will be an interesting year! Huge huge huge changes in missionar work here, should be good!
Other than that, not too much more to report this week.
Probably the most or second most crazy week of my mission including mental breakdowns, President losing his temper and running up escalators in the airport, best sight ever was that he, a 68 year old bald American Mormon missionary President in a suit flying up escalators at 11:00 PM on New Years day trying to get missionaries on their flight even thought they were lost already. Needless to say we got some looks. Best experience ever. But yeah, great week and looking forward to these big changes! Love you guys and have a happy new year and I will hear from you soon!
(The picture of my zone says, SOMOS ESTE because we are the zone este. Este means east and somos is we are. So it says we are east. Basically the east zone.)
(Other photo is us making fun of Prom pictures in a parking garage next to the mall here. It was a good Pday today)
(The others are us goofing around) hope you enjoy!