Monday, January 25, 2010

Mission Week 19/Panama Week 10: Tough Assignment in Chorrera

Hola Familia!
Change of duty station to San Diego?  Neat.  Elder Laidler (MTC Companion) will be happy to hear that. 

My new companion is Elder Victor Castillo and he's from Ecuador.  he talks a little differently so sometimes I can't understand a word he says.  He has been out about 19 months or so.  Elder Laidler was also in this zone but the day I was going to meet him, he got emergency transferred to San Blas.  Talk about irony.

I actually got a ward this time.  There are alot of really neat members in this one, but I think they don't understand that missionaries shouldn't be 'chilling' at their houses.  Lots of inactives, naturally, and I think the Bishop doesn't really care much for the missionaries.  And in all complete honesty, I can't blame him much for it.  There's a lot of work to do everywhere.

I just received two letters.  My ZL here still has them and I'll likely nab them from him right after I e-mail.  My guess is that they're the replies from my friends that I've been waiting for for awhile.  But one of the counselors to the mission President told me that I had a package, or at least that's what it sounded like.  Im not sure, but I'm hoping it gets sorted out soon.

Did I buy a rice cooker? No, because people here really like to feed me, too.  A lot.  I only buy cereal for breakfast.

I will write a letter to the ward today.  There will be time; the zone is going to play soccer again.

When I had a rough time in Concepcion, I wanted to go home.  Heck, there are alot of times when i still want to go home, for a myriad of reasons. I've still got alot tof growth do do; almost no one here knows how to work; my hold on the language can be very limited sometimes.  But I don't feel like I can go home right now. 

Working here in Chorrera will be difficult for two reasons:
1.  The members and the ward are going to need to understand that while we are here to be their friends, chill time is not allowed.
2.  I really need to study my language much more.  I think the only possible way I'm going to be able to teach anyone out here is if I use personal stories.  But to use those, I really have to understand the language better. 

The way some of the people out here think really drives me nuts as a missionary.  Nearly everyone I talk to is one of two things.
1. I was born as a {Whatever religion}, I'll die a {Said religion}.
2. Well, I don't really think it matters what religion you are, as long as you believe in Jesus.

I'm still hanging in there and I expect to destress quite a bit today.  I hope everything goes well with house hunting and all other endeavors.

Your Elder in Panama,
Elder Austin Michael Ascura

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