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Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas to Everyone

Hello! First off, I CAN´T BELIEVE IT´S CHRISTMAS AGAIN! Wow, I hope you all enjoy the snow and Christmas spirit. As missionaries, we´ve had a white Christmas as well, just with a little twist: no snow. haha. Better yet, we had the baptism of Juan Sarli.
Juan Sarli. I didn´t have time to describe his incredible conversion story last week, due to an occupied schedule and crazy week. Plus we ended up playing sports on Pday, which is always a blast. But yeah, we had taught Juan for almost two complete months, passing by his house about two times a week. From the first visit and to this very day, he has always invited us in with a smile on his face, showing his teeth underneath his HUGE mustache. :). With roughly 60 years under his belt, he knows life well and always has many stories to share with everyone. He is a complete cowboy and grew up on a ranch, basically out in the middle of nowhere. For almost 40 years, he worked with tractors and other farm machinery, leaving him with his dark bronze skin and interesting sense of humor. Everyone can see his humility, and I have really enjoyed teaching him.
After going over every missionary lesson two times with him, he felt ready for baptism, ready to make the sacred covenants, and ready to "start a new life," as he likes to say it. He really has seen some changes, and after listening to the discussions he realized the church could help him out substantially in his maturing years. He accepted his baptismal date at the beginning of Novermber, and with that goal in mind, we worked diligently with him, little by little, right up until that special Saturday when he entered the water and started his life as an official member of the church! 
He is doing great right now, and we pass by his house once a week to teach the lessons over again. Plus it´s just great to see an old friend's face. If I ever have the opportunity to come back to Argentina after my mission, his house would definitely be on my list of houses to visit! We ate dinner with him just the other day, which was also just great.
Though tough at times, the mission has really blessed my life. Seeing the change in people´s lives, even though it takes place thousands of miles away from my house, makes me smile. Sometimes I feel like my past life didn´t even exist haha. I have been here for almost 17 months. Man, i am officially Argentine! :)
I really appreciate everything you guys do for me. Hopefully Santa makes it to each and every one of your houses!!
Merry Christmas,
Elder Jones 

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