Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Week 22: Rescuing a Romanian, Black Church, and Deflating a Cat

Hola family!

Good news, I just sent a letter in the mail to you guys, should be
there by next week hopefully!

This week was a little bit strange. We started off by spending a
morning out in Chiva, a small town about 15 miles outside of Valencia
to do some contacting and passing by some members. Well, the town was
empty as heck, but we still had fun talking to the old people and
getting some much needed fresh air(Valencia's air is pretty bad). We
also gave out some baptismal dates to some of our investigators! One
was for Samuel, a man from Ghana who basically accepted everything we
taught him as truth in the first lesson, and sadly won't be getting
baptized until I probably get transferred at the end of the month,
since he missed church(dang it!). We also have been teaching Lola, a
Spaniard woman with a bunch of life problems, and who’s super nice.
Besides the fact that she's got the attention span of a bag of cats at
some points, she's been super receptive and we hope to give her a
baptismal date next week!

Our other investigator is Rafael from Nigeria, who've we been teaching
since before Christmas. He's a super religious man, so trying to
humble him down to go to church has been a struggle. So we ended up
making a deal. If we attended his church, he'd come to ours. So that
we did. It was called Mountain of Fire and Miracles, and the meeting
was probably the strangest experience of my life. We were the only
white people in the building, so we stood out like crazy. Luckily for
us, they were all super nice Nigerians who got super excited when we
came in. But from the super bad translator changing the lesson from
English to Spanish (" por favor sit down!") to the freaky dancing
during the choir numbers, to the fake flames behind the pastor the
entire time, we were ready to leave after like 45 minutes haha.
Overall definitely a cultural experience, and because of that, him and
his wife attended our church!

A miracle that occurred this week strengthened my testimony also that
God knows where he needs us to go, at exactly the right time. We were
contacting on our way to an appointment in downtown Valencia, when we
passed by Eugene, a little Romanian member who was going to cut some
plants for his wife's sore throat. Not thinking anything of it, we got
to the appointment, only to have them fire on us, so sort of a bummer.
As we sat in the square next to her piso calling people, we heard a
yell from an alley down the street, which sounded a lot like Eugene!
So we quickly jogged down there to find this angry(and I mean angry)
African man who looked like a construction worker squeezing Eugene arm
with a death grip and yelling at the top of his lungs that he was
going to call the police on him for cutting what apparently was a rare
plant from a sort of old and unkempt garden(it was a cactus). This
drew a crowd, so we began to reason with this angry man to let him go,
since this was the first time this ever happened. Still not convinced,
he dragged Eugene along the road to the garden to point out which
plant it was again. He now was pretty much shaking this poor old man
by the belt and arm, so we, more forcefully, with the help of Ronny
the member we had, tried to convince him to let the man go. Finally,
after a bunch more people came and convinced this man to let him go,
he gave in and took his picture as a warning before storming off.
Obviously shaken up and hurt from the experience, we helped to walk
this man back to his wife and home. I know that without our being
there, Eugene would have never had the support/witness of us with that
man, and because of that I'm grateful that God had us go there at that
time, even if our appointment didn't go as we wanted.

We also were able to participate in a bit of service for a recent
convert of ours. Hermano Washington, who's super great, has two cats,
who are, well you know cats. That was a no duh statement haha. One of
his cats is super old, so it has a lot of issues, heart conditions,
and an issue where it's body is filling up with proteins every two
weeks. So since he's too nice to put it down(it really should be that
poor creature haha), he asked our help to restrain the head and feet
while he sucked out 2 liters of off white protein from its body with a
needle and syringe. This we did for about 10 minutes before the cat
flipped out, and we had to keep restraining the thing. We didn't get
all of it out, so it's still quite giant haha. The best part was that
he served us this lukewarm peach shake afterwards that was the same
color of the proteins so that was bit hard to swallow. But hey,

This week during my studies, I read some amazing conference talks from
some of the apostles. The one I enjoyed was the CES devotional from
last week from President Nelson and his wife, called Becoming True
Millennials. It overall focused on how even if the world doesn't think
so, our generation has tremendous power to help others and be powerful
missionaries in the world. It also spoke on how we should
instinctively use the powers of heaven and the church(temples,
prophets, scriptures) in order to answer our questions on life. On the
mission this isn't that hard to do(since all we got is scriptures and
conference talks haha), but in life this would help many not to get
distracted by other untrue influences of the world. Overall, it's a
great devotional, and one that can apply to all of us, since we all
live as part of the millennial generation(since, you know, it's been
the new millennium for like 16 years now haha).

Overall great week, and even better since we had our interviews with
president this week(who's the coolest and most spiritually in tune man

Love and miss you all!

Elder Taylor Moulton

 Spent a morning contacting and passing by people in Chiva, a tiny pueblo with great views, clean air, and a bunch of old spaniards!  (orange groves above)
 Three giant king statues on a mountain - they celebrate big here in Chiva!
 The town watering hole/pond
 The dry riverbed, since there's never water here in Spain haha
 Waiting for our train home
 The view from one of the passby's home

 New food this week - Spanish churros and chocolate!
 Deflating a cat - that counts as service right?

 Delicious Italian pizza for lunch today
 Valencian Cathedral
 Yep we climbed 270 steps to get to the top of that!  

 Valencia and the sciences in the background
 Elder Turner and his new "gang sign"

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