Wow I am impressed with all the crazy stuff that has been happening lately. You guys went to China like it was nothing haha. Thats pretty cool all the stuff you guys got to do. I just hope you realize that now as all of your kids are basically Grown up we can do cool adventures like that as a family. I just have to learn Chinese now so you guys won´t one up me. My district leader elder Sien, elder sacalxot and I have this running joke thing where we always try to one up eachother. If someone says they have a 30 thousand dollar car the other says they have a cooler 31 thousand dollar car haha. Its pretty funny. But we also try to one up eachother in real life. And so I figure that I have to one up you guys, I can´t let you guys speak the same number of languages as I do. So for my birthday IF you send a package, which I don´t expect because its a waste of money and I can basically buy all the same stuff down here, send me a Mandarin for dummies book.
This week was pretty lame in church. We only had 43 people in attendance, and 7 were investigadores. That means that only 35 members came to church. And we have to remember that there are 8 endowed families, and several endowed individuals in the branch. So if only 35 come to church, and only 4-5 of them are endowed, that means that 15+ people are bringing upon themselves a condenation for their infidelity... But hopefully tey we come next week. The active...or less active ones at least.
There is a family here named the Garay Family, and They have so many tests of faith that they are going through right now. They live in a colony called Las flores. We call it sodom, we also have one we call gomorah (La vista hermosa) We arent allowed to knock doors in that colony because of all the bad stuff that has happened there in the past, but we can teach there if we have a refferal. But anyways it is a truly horrrible place. I can give you guys a little Salvadoreño history of Gotera. Basically San Francisco Gotera is far from the capital and has border with Honduras, during the war this was a conflict point between the Rebels (FMLN also known as fidel castro communists. And yes they are the dominant political party in E.S) and the government. Gotera was government territory, and all the cities that are above Gotera were fromt he rebellion. During this time there was an abslute embargo? of food and supplies going up to the upper cities. As part fo the whole deal, to save the people above from dying, the governement invited them to come to Gotera, they gave them free food, supplies and land here in gotera. And the people took advantage of this, so now these free-loaders all live here in gotera in these colonies of free land (Las flores, vista hermosa, San José etc.) and they still live the free-loader life. These colonies are full of what they call "Huevónes" or "Araganes" who don´t work, are full of drunks, and nobody, nobody, nobody has any money. So as such the place is basically a pig sty of sin and filth, and keeps degrading.. sot he garay family wants to move, but don´t have the money,a nd they are trying to raise a family in this horrible place. They arent the only ones either. On top of that there are a ton of other trials that they are going through in their family. Oh but I could spend all day talking about ther trials that we have here in Gotera..
On the good side we have a couple people who are working towards baptism this coming month, but we are not rushing to force them into the water. I agree with Teresa, it does no good the anyone to baptise instant inactives. So now when I pray I dont pray that we can baptise, I just pray that we can help people gain a testimony, because when they have a testimony, they will get baptised. It wont be an issue, it will just be part o the process of trying to become like Christ.
Love elder DeVictoria