Monday, October 14, 2013

Family and friends!!! I am low on time this week for several reasons but I can definitely say that this has been the best week of my mission so far! I will try to cram as much as I can in and I might just have to fit in the more important parts. Well I am in Leganes right now which is close to Fuenlabrada. Reason being is that this morning, Elder Echegaray left to go to an area called Cuatro Caminos and he is serving as Zone Leader there in Barrio 1. As we say here, ¡¡Que maquina!! He is awesome and I will miss him a ton. I have been chosen to train a new missionary straight out of the MTC which is nerve racking but exciting as well! It is rare for a non native speaker to be training right when they finish getting trained so I know it will be hard but I am excited to work hard with someone filled with excitement. I'll find out tomorrow who it is and so I have to stay with the Elders from Leganes for a day. Well this weekend our miracle finally came full circle. Ana was baptized on Sunday and she chose me to baptize her! It was the first time that I had baptized anyone and it was suuuch an amazing experience. I will never forget it and I felt the Spirit so strongly. Exactly three weeks after we had our first lesson with her, she was baptized. Lets see... what crazy stuff happened this week. Well on Tuesday we went to Parla to do an interview with a whole family who was baptized on Friday! Elder Echegaray was the district leader so we went there to do it. Everything went great and they all passed! On our way back, they told us to take this bus home and it ended up going the wrong direction and we wasted about an hour and a half of our night! We just barely got back to stop by Ana's to see how she was doing. She gave us a ton of food and so that lifted our spirits. She is amazing. Well on Friday we went to Parla again to go to their baptism which was fantastic. The family is so strong and amazing. It really got me excited for Ana. We basically had 4 lessons with her this week and they all went amazingly. She accepted all of the commandments and has a testimony of Joseph Smith. On Saturday we had her interview and so we had to go to Carabanchel to meet with the Zone Leaders there and bring them down to Fuenlabrada. It went great and she passed wonderfully! We had an activity during the night which was awesome. Members brought food from their own countries and it was super cultural! We cleaned the baptismal font and thats when we found out the transfers too. I am so stoked to train!! So Sunday we had church and Ana came with her two kids, Esteban came with his two daughters, and Solange came with the Morena family. It was amazing to see so many investigators in the chapel! Oh and Juan Romera was there too of course! At 6 we had Ana's baptism and honestly, it went perfectly. Everything was just perfect and I will never forget it. Elder Echegaray bore his testimony and it was the first time that I have seen him cry. I was filled with the Spirit and cried myself. After, Ana bore her testimony and told her story of how we met her (ask my mom if you want to know!). It was amazing and I am so grateful for this opportunity to be here in Spain, as a missionary. Sorry I don't have more time but thank you for all of your letters, prayers, and love!! Elder Franklyn

Monday, October 7, 2013

October 7, 2013 - Conference Weekend!

Another week has passed by here in Fuenlabrada! The time seems to be going by more quickly but we are also beginning to see more fruit from the work that we have accomplished here. This week will mark my fourth month as a missionary and it has gone by quickly! Only 20 more months left! Haha but I know I'll enjoy every one of them. Well for P Day last week we went to El Sol like I talked about last time and it was really fun! After we had a lesson with Marinela and her family. They are from Romania and I kind of feel like Elder Mayans over here. Just wish I knew some more Romanian. Or any... We taught them about the Book of Mormon and it went good! Tuesday we had an intercambio with the elders in Parla and so I was with Elder Baker again and I stayed here in Fuenlabrada. It went really well! We had a lesson with Ana in her door way adn we read 2 Nephi 31 with her which she loved. Then we contacted for a while and actually had a lesson with a man named Jorsh who is from Bulgaria in a park. That night we went to Hermana Consuelo's house and ate some cheese empenadas and had a short lesson with her. Juan Romero came too and our relationship continues to grow better! Wednesday was a hard day. It started out great with our Zone Training meeting but after, a bunch of people canceled on us. We ended up having a lesson with Purificacion and we talked strictly about steps that she needs to take to quit smoking. Her record to date is still 3 a day but we just need to push a little bit more to the end. After we stopped by Marinela's and gave her a Romanian Book of Mormon because we didn't have one before. After we went out to pass by a few houses and no one was home and a few people just didn't want to see us. We tried hard that night but didn't see much success. Thursday was amazing. We planned the week which was a little boring but good and I learned alot about recieving answers through prayer. We prayed a lot about Ana and decided that we needed to set a date with her to be baptized. After Medio Dia, we went straight to Ana's. We taught her about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and set a date with her to be baptized. I'm gunna leave you guys hanging a little and not tell you when but just wait for a picture of some good looking people in white haha. She is such a blessing for us and I am so grateful to Heavenly Father for her in my mission. We can't do anything without His Holy Spirit and He has blessed us through our obedience to have the opportunity to teach her this wonderful message. After we had a lesson with Esteban the spaniard which went really well and we actually set a date with him to be baptized on the 26. He agreed hesitantly but told us of some experiences in which he has seen signs that he needs to get baptized. It truly was amazing. After we went out contacting and recieved a few good references and ended the night on a great note. Friday we had another intercambio with the elders from Mostoles and I.... stayed in Fuenlabrada again haha. Third time in a row but I am learning a ton and had a great time with Elder Malan. He's from Draper Utah! We had a blast together. We contacted for a bit in the morning and had a little success from a guy that was practically yelling at us but we had a lunch appointment with Hermano Carlos Murillo which went great! The food was booomb. After medio dia, we had a lesson with a new investigator named David. It went really well and he is really interested in the Book of Mormon! After we went to Amparo's and shared a little message which went well. Then we taught English class with Purificacion as our only student but it was fun! Noche de Hogar didn't happen because no one showed up but we went out contacting and had a lot of success. We met a man named Sergio and ended up giving him a Book of Mormon and he told us he would read the whole thing! Good day! Saturday was great!! We switched back in the morning and then had a lesson with Mike! It went really good and he is trying to be better every day. After medio dia, we had to basically head straight to Pavones to watch general conference at 6. It was the morning session and I watched it in spanish with Elder Echegaray and it was amazing! I was suprised how much I understood and how good my notes are on it. We headed back after taking a few photos by the temple and arrived back at 9:55 so we went straight to planning. It was a great day though! Sunday was even better! They held priesthood at 11 but we couldn't go because we went to Ana's at 12:30 to take her and her two kids, Ashley and Leandro, to watch general conference with us! It was the farthest she had travelled with the two little ones, only being 3 and 1 years old, and my faith grew a bunch by seeing her excercise hers. We watched the 2 o'clock session with them in spanish which went good but I was mostly wrangling the little ones to give her a chance to listen. After we walked around the temple grounds a bit and took some pictures and then took them back to the train station. At 6 we watched the last session and I finally got to see it in english!!!! It was amazing and I learned sooo much. Conference is amazing! Today we are going to Parque Sur, the mall not the park, to eat food and bowl with a bunch of other missionaries!! I am super excited and know it'll be a blast! I love you all and thank you for all of your emails and love! You're the people who make this work possible! Keep it up. Elder Franklyn