Monday, July 27, 2009

I think it is just awesome that the ward is getting a second set of elders because they are doing so much teaching, way to go Beacon Hill ward. All we do down here is spend our time finding people and in fact there was actually a talk in conference about how many missionaries spend much of their time finding people rather than teaching them. It's interesting how your perspective changes when you're a missionary. I wish I had shared more.

The language is going good for being out a little over 4 months and although I can understand quite a bit and can talk alright it's a bit of a pain sometimes because I can't understand much of anything they say when they aren't talking about gospel stuff.

Sorry, but no pictures this week as this computer totally locks me out and won't read the card so hopefully next week.

What a week! We found so many good people or golden investigators but none of them were able to come to church because of prior commitments but they are so great! There is this one older couple in particular. We were crossing through an area that we hadn't been in for a while and I remembered that we had agrigated this one lady (an aggrigation is where we teach a compact lesson one and commit them to something and almost always Elder Kenney and I give them a Book of Mormon and get them to read and pray about it). She didn't seem very promising and she didn't seem that interested but she said that she would read it and pray about it. In fact if I remember correctly the only reason I remembered her was because she was the first lady where I did most of the aggrigation. So we stoped by and her husband answers and said to his wife, more or less, the two boys that walk around all day talking about religion are here, and as he is letting us in we hear in the background the wife or the one we aggrigated say (loudly might I add) "Mormones." So we talked to them both and they are as golden as you can get! The lady reads the Book of Mormon every night and the husband described it as she reads it whenever she can. He is almost blind but is getting new glasses soon so he will be able to read it and is really excited to. Also it turns out that he visits a former Branch President in the area every so often because he now lives alone. Incredibly, they would have liked to go to church, but couldn't because they had a prior commitment (we talked to them Saturday night) but they said they can't wait to go to church. As we taught them they were soaking it all up! It was an amazing lesson!

We had a lot of other good people this week that we talked to but none of them were able to make it to church which was the first time we've been able to go to church in a month because of the pig flu or wait it's the swine flu isn't it? I can't remember they call it "la gripe por cina" or "gripe-A." Now that we have church though we can really start getting people to progress. It's really hard to get someone to want to be baptized when they've never been to church.

Well I know this work is guided by the Lord, now more than ever, because of the narrow ways in which we ran into all of these people this week. Now we just have to see them through the next few steps!

Thanks for you love and support!

Elder Sands

Monday, July 20, 2009


Feliz dia del amigo (happy day of the friend)! This week was well a little hectic. We were helping the Hermanas (sisters) in our district on Tuesday and found some great people here in Tandil (I'm in Tandil for p-days). After that we went back to Rauch of course and well worked not a whole lot more.

The pig flu has ground everything almost to a hault but it is finally starting to subside from what I've heard; everywhere but Tandil. As of Thursday there were 170 deaths from the flu in the province of Buenos Aires and 70 of them were in Tandil and Tandil isn't that big, especially compared with the rest of the province. So once again no more church.

So one thing from Argentina is alfajors (pronounced alfahores) they are these little cookie type things with chocolate dipped and two or three of the little cookie type sandwich structure with stuff like "dulse de leche" or something else in between. They are really common I'm sending a couple of pictures of my favorite (as of now I haven't tried very many). They're amazing I don't know why they aren't in the states.

Sorry about the lack of pictures but I'm still trying to get rid of pictures from off my camera that were from the MTC but I think now I'm starting to get to those from Argentina. I'll get to those from Rauch eventually, but Rauch it's very, well empty. There is a lot of campo (fields) in the area so we do a ton of walking as we don't get any bikes and it is that way in the whole mission.

So the weather this week has been fairly rainy and windy which is never a fun combination.

Anyway I'm running out of time thanks so much for everything!

Elder Sands

Monday, July 13, 2009

Sorry guys, I forgot my camera in Rauch, so no new pictures this time around.

Acea, it's good that camp went so well. I'm glad to hear that you achieved a lot and had a great time.

This week had to be the biggest up and down, it was kind of crazy. We found a lot of really good people and we lined up a lot for yesterday. There still isn't church because of the flu and it has shut down a lot of stuff down here. We have to instead have lessons with members with all of our investigators. So we go to our first one and no one answers even though the key was in (the locks are really different down here) so there was definitely someone there. After that we went to a couple of members homes to give the sacrament. We then went back and after a long time someone finally answers and he said that his mom wasn't there and he was sleeping. You can tell that this isn't too important to them or they would put more effort into it. We also went by another investigator and same thing, wasn't there. Also we had a lesson with our fetcha (date for baptism) but she said that she doesn't want to get baptized right now and that she'll start taking the lessons again in a few months. It was a huge let down.

However now we are going to focus on a couple of other people we found. They look very promising. One of them doesn't exactly live near us but for some reason I kept on remembering her so we passed by many times and every time she wasn't home. We finally caught her Saturday and it was amazing. We only had an agrigate with her (which is a short, on the door step, first lesson) and she had read and prayed and knew it was true. It threw us off because they never do that the first time, so we challenged her to be baptized and she said that she'll pray about it (which is what we asked her to do) and then we had an amazing second lesson. We meet with her again on Wednesday.

We also have a lot of others with whom we actually have citas (an appointment). We have really good numbers. It is amazing what a difference a hard working companion makes. We get along really well too. Also I think I mentioned this, but he cooks, so now I'm learning recipes and such. So now we actually have some food not just bread.

I don't know if you have received any pictures of Rauch, but it would be the fields with the fences and horses and cows. Not much else. It's really small and we do a ton of walking. One other interesting thing about Argentina, there are dogs everywhere, and lots of them! Sometimes they'll follow us around which is kind of fun. These dogs are a lot more tranquilo (calm) down here. Also if any of them ever barks a lot all we have to do is pretend to pick up a rock and they book it in the other direction. They really don't like to mess with people. Also there are like packs of strays that run around the streets. Apparently there aren't many in Rauch, it is very clean from what I've heard.

Anyway I'm out of time thanks for the support!

Elder Sands

Monday, July 6, 2009


Wow Timo and Mica, enserio or rather seriously hahaha, that is so great that they are learning about the gospel. That's really awesome so how are the pools? I realized that when the 4th came around that I usually am at the pool for that day.

It's crazy to think about it, especially because it's cold! Well not really cold, but chilly. Anyways, I need to buy a few things as the missionary mall coat, well it's not very, well useful. So I'm going to get something a tad more useful.

Way to go Acea and Sebring on the grades! That's awesome!

This week was insane! The pig flu is well it's really causing problems. But also, this week was really, really exciting because my companion is fantastic! We worked really hard and we almost had the same numbers as the Hermanas (Sisters) in our zone and they lead the mission almost every week in certain things so we are really excited for this transfer. Well other then the pig flu stuff which I'll talk about, we just worked like crazy! We don't have a really big area but we found lots of people to teach. We tried to get a picture in front of the municipalidad (kind of like city hall) for the fourth because they put up the date in these big letter things and such, but they didn't do it for the fourth and we can't really figure out why. That was interesting.

Elder Kenny can cook too, it is awesome! So whenever we don't have food with members we actually have real food. I'm learning a lot from him in that respect too.

So now to the crazy stuff. We didn't have church! Yeah Argentina is well going crazy over the pig flu and there are actually a few cases in Rauch, I've heard. So that kind of made the work difficult because we have to get people to church. So without church that is difficult. They're also going to try to close all of the supermarkets this week for 3-7 days. It's really got a lot of people freaked out. So this has got to be one of the most interesting things to happen.

The hospital here in Rauch is like full, and they won't let anyone in at all unless they're already sick. So we are buying more food for the week and well working more or less without a goal. It is really frustrating. Also all of this week we're stuck in Tandil because we have a zone conference and we're supposed to do divisions every week now so we don't get to go to Rauch until Friday. Well maybe later too. I'm not too excited about this.

One thing I learned however is that when you have someone who has the same goals as you do and you have the Lord on your side, amazing things can happen. We have just been walking down a street and just randomly walk down the wrong street (we do that a lot) and so we decided to knock a door and every time they let us in! You can tell that the work is led by the lord. This is his work and I love it!

Thank you for all of your letters speaking of which I don't think they have pioneer treks down here but I really enjoyed reading about yours and it reminded me of when I went and I loved it.


Elder Sands