Well, I am very excited to be one of the many missionaries (the age change is bringing a flood of new recruits) training a new missionary! His name is Elder Andrew Jessup from Harbor City, California. He is very big but he has the enthusiasm of a little kid. He is a hard worker who wants to be obedient. He speaks the basics of Spanish, but I am helping him a lot with pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary. I am pretty strict about speaking Spanish all of the time, though I do explain things he doesn't know. One of his goals is to learn how to roll his r's. I am taking your advice and trying to serve him every day, even little things like teaching him how to cook or cleaning his shoes. It can be very fun, but it is also a lot of work. I have a lot more respect for parents or anyone else who has to give constant attention to children--I am sure what I am feeling is just a small example of how that is.
I am also very grateful for my trainer, though at the same time, I am trying to do everything I would have like my trainer or other companions to have done to help me. Being a trainer has been pretty emotional. It was exciting going to Asunción to see who else would be training and wanting to see which one in the group I would train. Like I said, it also makes me remember how hard my training was and gives me an immense sense of gratitude for the strength God gave me to make it through and how much I have progressed in this year.
It is also satisfying to see his progress and enthusiasm as we focus on the basics. Today we were setting a lot of goals for the 12 week (two transfers) training period, and one we decided to put was how many baptisms. When he said 5, I acted a little shocked, and so he was going to set a lower goal. He was very happy when I told him I think we can get even more. So our goal is 15! I didn't tell him that is more than I have baptized in my whole mission (yes, I do write it all down in my journal), but it will be good to help him have a high aim.
I am trying to have faith to baptize more people in spite of the difficulties. I now have a lot of pressure with my two assignments--like worrying about a calling and a family. But it is just another chance to learn and strengthen my testimony. Speaking of baptisms, the mission baptized 185 last month, which is a record (because there were 5 weeks). My district was one of the highest baptizing districts, as it was before I got here. So things are going fairly well, but like I said, there is a lot of pressure.
One of the difficulties is that we still don´t have anyone who is progressing. But I am happy with the progress our branch is having. That was our first correlation meeting in a very long time, and we might have branch council this week! Yes, Ismael is younger than me. Please keep praying for the leaders, for my companion and all he is learning (especially Spanish), and for me to strengthen my faith (may sound odd, but I need it).
Sounds like there are a lot of changes happening (just like this time of year last year), but I am sure you will be able to get through it all. Life never stops changing, like you mentioned. I am sure Daniel will do well. One thing that might be good for him to bring is a flash drive to store pictures, videos, or things the mission sends him like talks or emails.
Like I said, the best way I can describe how I feel is gratitude for this chance to train. The Lord blesses us with so much, and we always need to use that to help others. Simple, but true.
-Elder Wesley Morgan