Wow, I don´t even know where to start. This past week has probably been the craziest so far during my seven months of service, which is pretty solid considering my first two areas and moving processes. Basically, I can´t describe everything that has happened during these past few days, and to be honest, I still have quite a bit to learn here. Just to give you guys a brief lowdown, on Friday morning the Mission President called me in my apartment in Paraná to ask me a quesiton. I AM THE NEW HISTORIAN IN THE MISSION! So basically, I left my new little apartment yesterday to travel to Rosario to begin working in the offices. From now until Wednesday, the old mission historian, Elder Larson, and I have worked together, trying to get everything organized and ready for both the new missionaries coming in this week and for the old ones who finish the mission tomorrow morning. Simply put, we have tons and tons to do, and I´ve had some pretty crazy experiences. Since it will probably work out better this week, I will make a bullet list. So much information!!!!!
- As historian, I work in the offices with five other missionaries. Luckily, I kinda described some details in an email a few weeks ago. Two missionaries work as assistants to the president and help with all of the main mission conferences and meetings each month. One missionary works as the financial clerk and is in charge of ALL the financial aspects of the mission. Another missionary works as the secretary and is in charge of visas and other official documents. Then another missionary works as the librarian and has to work with all of the contracts and supplies of the mission. Then there´s me, the historian!!! I will explain my job throughout the email!
- I work with baptismal forms, church data computer programs (MLS and other ones), and with a special historian gmail account. So basically, I still have tons to learn and have only worked here in the offices for about one day. However, I still kinda have a general lowdown of my basic duties :)
As the historian, I will:
-keep track of all new members and current baptismal services within the mission
-be in charge of all the mission data, which we log into and organize in excel to do analysis and brainstorm of ideas for improvement in areas (# of contacts, lessons, etc.)
-put together the weekly powerpoint presentation that gets sent to all missionaries every pday. I might send it to you guys one week, just so you can see what I get to do! It includes mission information about everything and letters from the president and other area authorities.
-help out the secretary, my current companion, with some of the visa stuff and centro trips to fill out official documents
-work with all of the referrals within the mission, which come from both LDS.org, the general offices of the church, and phone calls from currently serving missionaries
-work with new misisonaries sometimes when they come into the field
-put together documetns and print off files that the president needs for certain meetings
And that´s about all I know for now. I still have small other things too, but those will just come with time. Elder Larson is really cool and is from Dallas, Texas!
- Right now, one of the newly called assistents is Elder Artunduaga, the same missionary who lived in my first apartment in Santa Fe! We just talked for a long time, and I really enjoyed it since I can finally communicate with him. At the very beginning of my misison, speaking in spanish was SO HARD! He is from Columbia and really cool!
- The air conditioning is AMAZING! This is my third time in an air conditioned room since I arrived here in Argentina!
- This computer here in the office feels incredible, even though it is just a two-year old PC!
- We work in the offices all throughout the day, each with our respective duties, and then leave out to work in the field for the last four hours before nighttime.
I want to write a lot more, but we have some stuff to do with the older missionaries. Also, there are some baptismal documents we have to enter into the computer. So I have to go. I love you guys and hope you all are doing well!
Thanks for all of the suport and everything. Next week, I should be able to write quite a bit more! The mission has really been quite the experience for me, and I really appreciate all of your prayers and what you had taught me before the mission. I love working with computers, so this should be a pretty fun experience for me.