Growing as I serve the Lord for two years and love the people for a lifetime

Monday, October 27, 2014

What The Guat?! Week 8

Alright so what´s your record of people that you´ve seen on one motorcycle? 2? Because mine is 5. Guatemalans are crazy. So something really cool about this place is that a bottle of soda costs roughly $.30. If we were allowed to drink Coke (we can´t), I´d be dropping Quetzales like it was nobody´s business. 

I got to teach a lesson in English on Saturday! We met a guy from Dallas, and he just asked me to speak English since his English is way better than his Spanish. It was really cool. I hope that with lots of study, I´ll be able to teach just as well in Spanish as I was able to in English. 

Last night, we went over to a member´s house to share a short message and watch a video about the Restoration. After, they brought us out some food. And then more food. And then more food. It was so awesome. Good stuff too. Oh, I had beans for 3 separate meals yesterday. That meant that I´ve had diarrhea 3 times this morning. Fun stuff. 

Okay, we aren´t supposed to have cameras when we´re out and about, because they may get stolen, so I don´t have lots of pictures. Lo Siento. 

One of our investigators asked if he could be baptized Sunday morning because he wants to be a part of the church so badly. It´s a rule that an investigator has to go to church 3 times before baptism, so we have to wait a bit before we actually can. His baptismal date is November 8th! If he goes to church next Sunday (which he will, he loves it), we´ve got the green light!! I´m so excited for him. He´s a really nice, humble guy who just wants to be closer to God. a

Well, I can´t think of much else for this week. I´m about halfway through the Book of Mormon. Y├íll should read it. The Spanish is coming along.
I love you all!
-Elder Konold

P.S.  You can take Fin out of America,  but you can't take the America out of Fin

 P.P.S.  There are cats EVERYWHERE!

To answer some questions:

What’s your ward like? How do your lessons go? Do you have to teach any classes in church? 

Do you get to meet with other elders during the week? Anyone from your MTC group in your district or zone?

How do you do contacts? On the street or do you go door-to-door? Do the members help much with referrals?

How are the kids there? Do you get to speak with them much? They tend to have an easier time understanding you.

You learning more words every day? What books are you reading other than the BofM?

Sheesh, lots of questions.
We aren´t allowed to drink any dark sodas. So it´s pretty much just sprite, 7up, and any orange soda. Our ward is good. I haven´t had to teach any lessons yet, or talk in sacrament meeting. We have district meetings every wednesday. We have 2 companionships in our ward, so I see those elders 3 times a week. Everybody is together for weekly planning, p day, and district meetings (our whole zone goes to a stake center). Most of our contacts are on the street. We rarely just knock doors. The kids here are nice, and a lot easier to speak with. Right now, I´m just focusing on the book of mormon and preach my gospel. I´m going to start listening to the Joseph Smith tapes at lunch (we get an hour every day).

Monday, October 20, 2014

Welcome to the real Guatemala!

My last week in the CCM wasn't anything spectacular. We just spent our last day doing workshops. So long. 
 {Transfer Day - Elders Jarvie, Konold, Chebreis, Gurksnis, and Flygare}

President and Sister Crapo are really nice. I think they'll be great. 
On my second day, we were walking around finding people to teach. My companion (Elder Funes from Honduras. He's nice) and I started talking to a couple on the corner. After a few minutes, I noticed the guy's shirt... Great Oak Class of 2012. I wish I could have taken a picture with him. We don't bring our cameras out on the street while we're working. 

{Fin and his companion, Elder Funes}

There are dogs EVERYWHERE here. Ugly ones, cute ones, ones that I didn't know existed. I saw a couple of dogs humping in the street. Stay Classy, Guatemala. OH!! I'm in the city! I'm in the central zone. I guess this is the zone that everybody wants to end their mission in, because we have all of the cool stuff here. I'm in the Trebol ward. They're pretty nice. 
I didn't even think about how much I'd be walking. We walk EVERYWHERE. Sometimes we take busses, but those are almost worse than walking because we cram so many people on there? How many people fit on a regular school bus in America? 50? Guatemala? 200. It's actually kind of funny. Okay, so sometimes we get sandwiches for lunch. They call them "transmetros." They're amazing, and they cost about 3 bucks. They're easily almost twice the size of a Subway sandwich. Good stuff. 
We had dinner with a member family last night. They were so nice! We have two other elders in our ward, and we were all over there. They said that my spanish is good (I don't really have an American accent when I speak, I just talk pretty slowly). It's been a good week. There have been lots of eye opening experiences for me. Poverty is a serious problem here. Our house is pretty nice compared to what else I've seen. It's just a reminder of how blessed we really are. 

Elder Konold

Our Apartment:
The lovely kitchen....
The shower...
 It's all about the food...

The study area...

Remember the lucky machete?!....please hide that!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

My Mother's Lucky Machete

Alright, this week was easily my best week in the CCM. Why? Because Guat City is awesome. We started our city tour with a trip to Wendy's. Wendy's here is super amazing. Imagine that Pat&Oscars bought Wendy's. That's what it's like. I don't think I've ever tasted anything so amazing as my Wendy's. I had a burger that I could have sworn was personally grilled by Uncle Sam. And I got an extra large Coke. Can't stop me from being American. 

We went to see this awesome relief map of Guatemala. It was really cool to see all of the mountains and lakes and areas that I'll be in. After that, we started our bus ride into the city. I saw a man peeing in the street, and a lady no-shame breastfeeding on a bench. Welcome to Guatemala, Elder Konold. 

The market was so cool!! There were two levels. The bottom one was a food market. They had massive cuts of meat hanging from the ceiling, 8 foot tall mountains of fruit, and flies EVERYWHERE. It was still pretty neat to see. The second level was where all of the Guats were selling their stuff. What was the first thing I bought? If your guess was "Not a machete," you'd be very, very wrong. Elder F and I both got one. They came in a really cool leather sheath. I walked around and got some goodies for all of you. I was happy that I was able to communicate with these people. I went in with the thought that I'd do some bartering and get some sweet deals on everything, but I quickly realized that these people need that money far more than I do. The presidential palace here is made of green stone because the president's wife loved guacamole. I can definitely see where she's coming from. 

Every week, we teach "investigators." This week, we actually taught real investigators. Elder J and I taught a woman who was supposed to be less-active, but turns out, she goes to church every week and the temple often. So that was a bit of a waste. Oh well. I got to practice my spanish!
{Fin's CCM District - Elders Dawson, Jarvie, Konold, Aubrey, Gurksnis, Flygare, Duncan, and Chabries}

Conference was pretty cool this weekend. My first time watching ALL. TEN. HOURS. So long. I thought the talks were good. My two favorites were Lynn G. Robbins,

and David A. Bednar's.

Bednar's talk was easily the best conference talk that I have ever heard. Can you print that out and send it to me? 

We got the package you sent on Monday. Everyone was really happy to get mail. That's honestly my favorite thing in the world now. Mail is the best. 

I guess that's it for this week. My next P Day will probably be my first Monday in the field. I'm so excited to go out, and I'm ready to be a real missionary. 

Abrazos y Besos!

-Elder Konold

P.S. The coke tasted a bit sweeter. But it was from a fountain, so I didn't notice a huge difference. I had a 2 minute chat with one lady at the market! I just told her that we were all missionaries and today was our day to do some exploring. I think we understood each other pretty well. I don't know if the churches here have wifi. I'll find out soon. I don't think that I get to email next week - we leave the CCM early next Tuesday morning. I go through phases of soft and liquid, but no solid dumps. Still haven't crapped in my Gs!