Monday, January 6, 2014

La Orientación Familiar (Home Teaching)

Last week, I didn´t even have time to write everything I´d planned. I also wanted to mention the Leadership council, which went very well. We talked a lot about working more with members and being obedient and formal. Supposedly, we are one of the most formal missions in the area (dress and conversation), but we have to keep improving, as with everything. President Agazzani also explained why numbers are very important to him and to the Lord--they represent our work efficiency and the amount of people receiving their salvation. He showed us that this mission baptized 500 more in 2013 than in 2012! Definitely the fastest growing mission in the area. I am very grateful to be here in Paraguay at this time, and the goal is to keep growing at an accelerated pace.

This week we had a lot of success with church attendance. I don´t know if I mentioned that we called group leaders (like a branch president) in Atyrá and Tobatí? That was a big step, and they are both doing well. The group leader in Tobatí has a sister (Teodora Meza) here who we have been trying to teach for a while, and he finally brought her daughters to church. We helped them move on Saturday, and their stepdad also seems interested in the church. The only complication is that he hand his soon-to-be-wife are never home at the same time. But we´ll see what happens.

Luján also came to church again, but her mom and the Garcías (her cousins) continue to fight so neither one comes to church. We need the support of all of them to help her get baptized and stay active. In that same neighborhood (Buena Vista), we are also teaching the Kiese family again. I think I´ve mentioned them--they are young adults who were baptized but never confirmed. They just need to quit smoking and come to church so they can get baptized again--which should happen soon.

We still have Gustavo Resquín and Emilio Portillo coming to church, but neither wants to be baptized. So weird. And Cristian is waiting for Ilse´s divorce so they can get married and baptized. We´ve got lots of miracles on the way.

We also called Delfina as Relief Society secretary. She is very timid and was scared the first time we mentioned giving her a calling. But she seems to have changed a lot and wants to contribute to the progress of the church. That made me so happy!

We´re giving out a lot of callings, but what we need now is Home Teaching. I cannot express how important that is. We have converts who fall through the cracks because no one knows who they are or helps them feel welcome. Elder Keller has the vision of assigning everyone a Home teacher, and we need that. For example, in that same neighborhood where we are teaching a lot of people, we found a young couple who'd been living in Barcelona for a few years. They seemed to know a lot about the church, and we taught the whole Restoration to them. When we invited them to be baptized, they admitted that they are already members. If they had a home teacher assigned, we would have already known that. President Thomas S. Monson, the most inspired man living on the earth today, chose to speak about the principle of Home Teaching instead of many other topics he could have mentioned in General Conference. It´s simple, but it is eternally important.

My favorite gifts are the belt--I really needed one--and the flashlight. It´s pretty awesome. That reminds me, President Agazzani said that the church is trying to get missionaries to change from backpacks to shoulder or waistbags, so having a little, but powerful light really helps. Yes, the next transfers are the last Wednesday in January, and I´m almost positive I´ll be leaving to do my last three transfers in one area. And Go Colts! Haha, and thanks for letting me know about the job opportunities. Maybe I'll end up just teaching at the MTC, like many people have suggested. I love you all! Don´t worry, be happy!

-Elder Morgan the Older

P.S. Along with doing your home teaching, read the Book of Mormon! It´s so important! (Moses 7:62)

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