Friday, December 11, 2015

"When it rains, no one leaves their house"

My best friend Elder Teahan left Trinidad.

Another good friend, Elder Knotts leaves Trinidad.

December7, 2015

So its been a little difficult 2 weeks! Last Sunday we had a down pour. When it rains here, no one leaves their house. So we get to church soaking wet and no one is there. We combined our branch with the another ward, central. And I think total we had 20 people there! And of those 20, 6 were from our branch. But then this week was super hot! And of course, we didn't have rain until Sunday, but even with the rain we had more people come than the week before! Combined again with our branch and central we had 50! That was better, haha! Progress.

This week we haven’t been able to find Alvaro (mr bolivia)... I'm pretty bummed about that but we will keep looking. On the bright side Joe is doing really well and is super excited for us to pass by! He didn’t come to church because of the rain, haha, but I have a feeling he will real soon! He is always waiting for us to pass by and teach him. He's working on his goal to start a new life! 

We also have a recent convert named Raul who is 82 years old. haha! He is the funniest guy I've met! He is super hard to teach because he doesn't understand completely. I think we have taught him the resurrection like 6 times, haha. But he’s super awesome. I love talking to him.

Elder Harding

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

"We have 3 new investigators!"

Hump day!!! Keeping tradition with the ceremonial burning of the white shirt.

November 23, 1015

This week was super cool! We have 3 new investigators. Ignasio,  Alvaro (mr bolivia) and Joe. Ignasio is a cool guy. He’s a little different and funny, haha, and he has friends in a different ward so he familiar with us and he is super excited to listen to us. Alvaro is Mr Bolivia. And yes, we found him! He is super cool and is very focused on family which is awesome because we teach a lot about families! He is very open and honest with us. He has expressed difficulties he’s had in his life and he has a lot of faith, so I think he will like the message we have for him. Then we are teaching Joe. Yeah, his name is American but only because his dad was obsessed with an old cowboy show called Billy and Joe or something like that. Haha! He is very out going and funny! He also helped us get to our next appointment with his motorcycle!  

This week we’ve also been visiting a lot of less active priesthood holders and trying to strengthen the branch to help it grow. 

I also had a fishing dream this week:( I dreamed we were in Mexico and I caught a huge dorado hahaha!!!

Elder Harding  

Sunday, November 15, 2015

"It was a happy ending:)"

My companion and I with President

A place that Presidente took us to eat.

I fished this eel out of the sewer in front of my house.

November 9, 2015

This week was awesome!! First we went to Santa Cruz to have our meeting and it was awesome! Presidente said something that I liked… he asked how is our study? Are we reading or studying? He said in the mission we need to be studying for topics. It was great, he taught everyone the more effective way to study. We were in the offices all day and after our interviews president took us and the zone leaders from Guayaramerin out to KFC! I didn’t know Bolivia had all these places!! 

We got back to our area to work and we were going to visit a new investigator with a member reference. During the ride on the motorcycles, my companion got a bug in his eye and it wouldn’t come out!! But, luckily this new investigator was a doctor! So he saved my comp and his eye and we had a great lesson after! It was a happy ending:) haha! In Bolivia right now it is mango season. I come home with bags full of mangos everyday. We pick them as we are walking!  They are everywhere! Oh, and we got to pass over Cochabamba on the flight home. I couldn’t find the temple or the Jesus Christ statue from the air... but it was awesome sight. 

Elder Harding

"I have to get used to new responsibility"

My comp (on my right) the greengos from Guayaramerin,they are so cool and Martino who I lived with in Guayaramerin.

Everyone leaving after immigration.

November 2, 2015

So this week was another crazy busy week without working much... I really miss teaching and a normal routine!! Haha, it’s alright, I just have to get used to the new responsibility. I’ve been helping the missionaries from Riberalta and Guayaramerin with immigration! It’s been crazy, but we have been taking care of them. We’ve had them around for a few days but they left and are finally back to their areas. So this week we have been trying get to know our area a little better because we still don’t know everyone. We are now getting help from our branch council and we have lots of referrals from the members which is great because we have lots of work waiting for us! Today we fly to Santa Cruz for the leadership council and will be there until Thursday... we are always so busy!! But it’ll be fun. My new companion is awesome, I love his desires to work and teach. He is super funny too! We are always joking around and joking around with the people here so our relationships with the families we have are super good and strong. We are working a lot with the priesthood menos activos and activando them and working from references with them and expanding our work from that. We are pretty much starting our area over and starting fresh, I love it and I’m super excited to see the progress!!

Elder Harding

"I have a new companion"

Alligator in a park 

My district before changes

October 26, 2015

So, this week was pretty busy with cambios. Yes, we had combios! I have a new companion. His name is Elder Villalobos from Colombia! He is super cool and he is from my group or my zone so I already knew him! But honestly, this week has been very crazy. We spent a good 2 whole days in the airport sending and receiving missionaries the combios! We lost a lot of time to work but we had a meeting with the stake president and we found out what has to be done to change our branch to a ward. So we will be working very hard to help this branch become a ward! We are working with our branch president and things are looking good! Not much else has happened this week because of combios things were crazy and it kept us so busy. We are going to dig in this next week and work on the new goal we have to change the branch to a ward! I’m pretty excited to get to work this week!

Elder Harding

Friday, November 13, 2015

"Crazy good soccer game"

October 19, 2015

This week was pretty fun and interesting! It started with a crazy
good soccer game latinos vs greengos, haha! Greengos won like 15-9! Haha!
That was pretty fun to play and funny. 

So we also had a service project to move parts of a motorcycle outside and as we were finishing the family decided they wanted to move the pig pen. We needed someone to get in the pen with the pig and tie it up and hold it so it wouldn't run off. Of course I was the one who jumped in there and lassoed it up and held it as everyone else moved the pig pen. Haha! My ears hurt from the pig squealing so loud!! But I didn’t mind, it was pretty fun! 

So we had intercambios and I got to work with Elder Santos. That day we busted out six lessons one after another! it was awesome! Oh, and the hermanas had a baptism for a girl named Silvia and she chose me to baptize her! So I had her baptism on Friday and it was a really good session. Her parents who aren't members, showed up and her uncle or dad I don’t know which expressed how happy he was for all the support of the branch to help her get baptized.

It was a pretty good week, I was happy with all the lessons and teaching we had!

Elder Harding

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

"Sister missionaries baked me a cake"

October 12, 2015

This week was pretty crazy and fun! So to start, we were supposed to fly to Santa Cruz to have a conference with President and the other zone leaders but the airport was closed so we joined in with skype, like a conference call, haha, but it was a terrible connection. We did the best we could and I think we understood most of it. So the point of the conference is we have to go back and teach what we learned to our zone. At the end of the conference call, the President told us, “Oh by the way, I'm going to be in Trinidad tomorrow!” And so he sat in during our reunion de zona as we taught what he talked about in the conference that we had on a bad Skype connection! Haha! To out surprise, it went really well! Monday the sister missionaries baked me a cake for my birthday and that made me pretty happy! I have a lot of pictures to send but I'm at an internet shop that has viruses so I am not going to connect my camera. So next week! It’s been super cold here and everyone is shocked. They say this never happens. Haha, I’m dying because my warm clothes are in Santa Cruz! I had to barrow a jacket from our branch mission leader! Oh, we have a branch mission leader now! He is awesome! He is recently married and his wife is a convert. We are super close with their family.

Elder Harding

"Conference was powerful"

October 5, 2015

So my birthday was pretty cool with conference this weekend! We watched it in the stake center and we got it in English!! We had a fat greengo party and everyone brought something to eat to share, it was awesome! I have pics but I forgot my camera today.... Conference was powerful. I liked the talk about mothers a lot, haha! It made me think of you mom, and how grateful I am for how you raised me and took care of me. After that talk, Elder Knotts and I looked at each other and said, “Crap, I miss my mom!” at the same time! Haha, I miss you mom. 

We had a lot of investigators come to almost all the sessions!! Which is almost impossible,butit was great! Haha! We have some really good investigators. And to answer the question for dad and Kevin, we had about 50 in the priesthood session. It was a good turn out. It’s amazing, this week passed by so fast! I don’t have my notes from this last week so I can’t remember what I wanted to write haha, sorry. I’ll do better next week!!

Elder Harding

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

"He was Mr Bolivia!"

These are old planes that crashed in Trinidad. They just pull them out of the way and leave them here in this airplane graveyard. They are on air force property and we got permission to explore them from the mechanics who let us through. 

September 28, 2015

This week had its ups and downs but mostly ups. It was a good week. The downs were I got sick because someone gave us bad water. I went to the clinic and my tests came out clean but I took the medicine they gave me anyway and I'm all good now! I have to go back and take more tests to make sure I am still in the clear. Then, after I started feeling better, my companion fell ill, he had the same thing! Hahaha! It was a rough week but we are good now! 

I'm pretty stoked about a new investigator I have. We contacted him in this rich neighborhood and we got talking and this dude is freaking jacked!! He's huge!! Then, I found out he was Mr. Bolivia!!! Haha! So he and I got to talking about the gym and all that good stuff. Haha, it was awesome! I was so happy to talk about working out and all that with him. We passed by his house again and he was leaving with his family to go to the park. He is also always working and then spends time at the gym. But he was super happy to see us and talk with us more so we will be passing by every Sunday because it is his only day free. We also have another really good family and they are all ready for baptism! But..... we are waiting for the fetchin lawyers.... one dropped the family and the other one wants more money and the family doesn't have the money... The lady investigator needs to get a divorce from her old husband who she doesn’t have any connection with anymore and doesn’t have kids with him so it should be a quick divorce but we need to find a better lawyer for her. 

So this was my week. it was pretty solid. And outside of the teaching, we are always running around because we are doing stuff for the zone! Haha! It’s crazy to be zone leader!

Elder Harding
The difference between a city and a country missionary's badge.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

"I am now in Trinidad"

Leaving Guayaramerin on combios.
We are building sofas for service.
This is the first Ford F150 I've seen since I've been here!

September 14, 2015

So this week was interesting. Yes, I finally had combios after 9 months in my first area! I am now in Trinidad as the zone leader! I’m pretty nervous to be the zone leader... but oh well, I will just have to work hard! This week I haven’t worked too much because I have been running around doing things for the zone. I am so lost here in Trinidad, haha! I don’t know where anything is! I had the opportunity to meet my branch and I bore my testimony on Sunday. The branch is big and strong and we have good leaders who help us work so I’m excited to get to work with them more! My companion is Elder Velasquez. He is from Argentina! haha! He is a cool guy he is super goofy which is good because i don't like serious haha! 

Elder Harding

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

"Everything is coming along so perfect"

September 7, 2015

This week was a great week!!!! We have a new investigator and her name is Keila and she is progressing super fast. We have had 3 visits with her and we have finished lessons 1, 2 and 3! She has come to church 2 times!! She has a baptism date set for the 26th and is ready!! She wants to learn as much as possible so we are visiting her everyday! We are preparing her for the combios in case we are not here. Our goal is to finish everything for the next missionaries who come to this area after combios. They won’t need to do anything before her baptism, she is honestly ready!! She is super out going and loves to joke around and she already knows the Book of Mormon. When we ask her to open to a scripture, she opens right to it! It’s just amazing how everything is coming along so perfect. That scares us a little hahah. But she has been prepared and is ready!! Also, I've been with Elder Sanchez this past week who is finishing his mission tomorrow. He is from Costa Rica. He is super cool and super funny! I’ll miss him so much when he leaves.. I have learned so much from him!! 

Elder Harding

Saturday, September 5, 2015

"President Zambrano came to visit"

Elder Harding with President Zambrano

August 31, 2015
Elder Harding

Entonces this week was a different week but a good one! President Zambrano came to visit! We had a meeting and holy crap, I learned a ton from him!! It is always good when he comes because we don’t really ever get to talk to him face to face because we are way far away from Santa Cruz where our mission home is. We all were able to have interviews with him and lets just say I don't think ill be leaving my area anytime soon! haha! He asked everyone at lunch how much time they had here in Guayaramerin and everyone is saying 2 months, 3 months or 4 months. Then he came to me and asked, “And Elder Harding?” and I said, “Well I only have 8 months... hahaha” and then he laughed and said the record for the last 5 years is 10 months in 2 areas. He said I might break the record, haha! So I don't know what will happen on the next transfer…we will see!

We have a new super good investigator! She was a reference from a member. This woman is super interested and I'm super excited to teach her Wednesday! 

We also found out the hard way about a bug here that makes a loud noise that hurts your ears. It looks like a cross between a fly and a cockroach.  If you get near it, it pees on you... My companion got peed on like a good 6 times this week! We learned that when we hear it, to not stop and look but to RUN!!! haha! My companion HATES all types of bugs so it was pretty funny that he was to one to get it!

Elder Harding

Friday, September 4, 2015

"Fernando is finally Baptized!"

August 24, 2015

This week had its ups and downs for sure! To start off, we had some sick service projects this week! First we went out in los compos to work like all the local men do here.  We went to cut down trees with our machetes!! It was a lot of fun! we had to use long sleeves and long pants because of all the bugs and spiders. I think it is how my companion got dengue fever. It’s a disease you get from mosquitos and he is pretty sick. We've been to many, many hospitals and used a butt load of money of taxis... haha! He is alright now, doing much better. The other service project we did was harvesting yuca. Yuca is the root portion of a plant like a potato and I think I even like yuca more than potatoes! So this guy said he just wanted to cook for us and we went way out in the compos to eat haha! He has a sick little camp thing. It was like an outdoor house, like a dream camp to me! This turned out to be a good week. Fernando is finally baptized!!! He did it!!! It was a beautiful baptism with lots of support from the branch!!! it was a fun week!

Elder Harding

"My rat count is two"

August 17, 2015

This week was a pretty good week. We had so many family home evenings with members it was nuts! I kept getting calls from people wanting us to pass by and give lessons to their families for family home evening. It was good for us because we got feed really well! haha! 

This week my rat count is two. We have a huge rat problem. So we will be studying in our house and a rat will run by… so I grab my machete and I've killed two so far! The latinos are all scared to death of them! haha! 

For P day today we went to Riberalta and hour away and had a really cool activity with the zone. It was at this resort like place and it was really fun. We played volleyball, tennis, soccer, ping pong and a bunch of other games.

This week I've focused on helping Fernando read and some menos activos! This Saturday will be the baptism of Fernando!! he did it!!! I am so happy! Hopefully he shows up to this baptism... haha! I know he will. He is super excited and loves to read the Book of Mormon. I also showed him the app the church has and so now he listens to the book when he is busy! I am pretty excited for him! Other that that not much is going on. No other progress with people..I’m still working on that.

Elder Harding