August 14, 2017




Elder Cochran

Semana de Semanas

Cameron hasn't been able to take a regular preparation day in about 4 weeks because of how busy things have been since his new mission president got there. He said, "The way President is using me is interesting. I am almost like his Assistant but at the same time I am a Secretary. He is using me like a secretary in a Presidency. Normally I have a lot more tasks to do than any of my companions. Normally I have to do lots of splits with them so that I can do the things President has asked me to do. I took a 1/2 day Saturday to buy food and clean the house but I had to work. I am busier than ever. I am taking a lot of the assistant's job and we are doing things in a way that gives me more work as well. Ecuador continues to change its laws so I am having to juggle many tasks not to mention my regular ones, and my purpose as a missionary. I am trying to maintain my calmness, and I have felt that my ability to take on a large amount of tasks has grown."

Hey Everyone,

This week has been a week with lots that has happened, starting with planning to start a change cycle.

Tuesday we prepared what was going to happen at a Leaders Council with all the leaders in the mission. We set up everything so that we would go to the temple and sleep in the dormitories that they provide. It turned out that we weren't able to get the dormitories so we decided to have them stay in our house. An hour before entering the temple a missionary called and told us there was space there. We organized it so that we would sleep there. But there was a problem that there were several missionaries that didn't bring a change of clothes in the morning so after the session I was running around coordinating that while serving food to the missionaries at the same time. By the time we left it was 10:20.

Wednesday in the morning we had woken up early to buy all the breakfast. When we arrived at the chapel we found out that the West Mission was there. We had reserved the chapel but there were 150 from the other mission. We had to reorganize where we were going to go and it was lots of work. I stayed behind to redirect the missionaries to a different chapel. Also a group of missionaries arrived per Presidents request but President was going to surprise them with going to a session in the temple. They all had forgotten their recommends. I organized it so that they would go fold blankets in the temple. After all that I arrived and helped set up the snacks for them. Then one of the missionaries told me that he had an appointment in 20 minutes that he had forgotten about. I was supposed to speak in the Leader's council but I was one of the only people from the office that could take him there because they were all speaking too. I talked for 2-3 minutes then left. While I was waiting for the hurt Elder to come out of his appointment I received a call that we need to pick up something at the office and bring to the council. We did it and we later organized the quantity of materials each zone of going to receive.

Thursday I had a my interview with President and he thanked me for the work that I am doing. He later continued with how he wants to get us working less in the office and more in the field. I am a little unsure of how we will do that but I am watching and waiting. He said he wants us working in the office only for 3 hours. That is taking away 4 hours from the norm. I don´t know how our workload is going to get shortened or how I will be able to do it but I will wait and watch.

Friday I had a special meeting with President and the Assistants and the sister leaders about what we are going to do when the new missionaries come. It is a lot different from before and will require a lot of work.

Saturday I took a half p-day. I bought food and cleaned the house. I came to the office to coordinate and to finish working on the plan for the arrival of the new missionaries.

Sunday came and it was such a great day. We had 2 special people come to church. They are both investigating the church and we have met them recently. They both loved coming and what they learned. Later that day we had a lesson with each one of them. We visited Bianca first. She is from Venezuela and lives here with her Uncle and Aunt until things calm down in her country. We had a powerful lesson with her. We committed her to be baptized and she was a little indecisive. Her aunt told us that she is afraid of what her family will think. Her uncle and her aunt then bore their testimonies individually of baptism and feeling the spirit testify of the truthfulness of the restored gospel. They both cried as they bore their testimonies and testified how the truthfulness of the restored gospel and the covenant of baptism. As we closed she prayed to know if it was true and she prayed for her family. She started to cry. We recognized that that moment was a special moment and we didn't want to interupt the spirit that was there so we left. Later we taught Leonela. She is an amazing person. 9 months before she was taking drugs, smoking cigarettes, doing bad things with her boyfriend, and it got the the point were she had a desire to slit her wrist. She turned her life around after reaching that point. She made those changes and God had put her in our path. She told us that she has tried everything to find happiness in this life but the one thing she hasn't tried is following Christ and now she is willing to do it. Two returned missionaries after coming home invited us to go visit her. She has come to church twice and now wants to get baptized. In church she said she wants to get baptized next Sunday. We visited her and she told us that she has found her answer. She said every time she has accepted us in she has felt a peace and a joy and a light that she has not found in any other place. After drinking, doing drugs, living in a different way that Christ has taught she said she couldn't find happiness but now as she has felt it she knows it is true. She accepted to be baptized this coming Saturday. She understands everything that we have taught about the gospel clearly and then does it. She is a great example to us all.
I love and miss you all!
Elder Smith


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