Cochabamba, Bolivia Temple

Cochabamba, Bolivia Temple

Monday, April 27, 2015


At long last we had a normal week again after all the conferences and extra meetings that we got to enjoy these past couple of weeks. So I might actually have some things to share.

On Monday we went and played some more fun Wallyball (with a picture). Almost every other Monday we've had have been very relaxed, but this one we did a lot of running around. There was especially heavy traffic as well as a section of the center of the city was closed down for cleaning. Again, not entirely sure how effective the 'cleaning' is down here. If ya'll are wondering why a part of the city would be cleaned, its because instead of having large Walmarts on every corner, there are open air markets that take up portions of the city. And, because these areas get a lot of people wandering through, quite a bit of rubbish finds its way to the streets. Anyway, we ran around for almost the entire day, and really enjoyed the time to sleep.
All the Elders enjoying their reward for their service.
On Tuesday we went and helped a family move their stuff to their new living space. Because it was only 2 and a half blocks away, and the people live pretty humbly around here, we got to carry everything down the street. Some things were definitely easier than others to move, but we did manage to get a hold of a wheelbarrow to help with the wardrobes and stuff like that. We got rewarded with some yummy food and I'm pretty sure pictures made it up there.

All the Elders who participated in the move

From there we were told we were going to have an extra meeting with the Élderes, but then later in the day we got a call telling us it was cancelled. So, we were left without plans before going and having the regular missionary meeting. If pictures from Linarez didn't arrive from this one either, it isn't my fault.

One of the pictures from Linarez


(The previous week he had mentioned they had visited the Linares family but no pictures had been posted. Hence, the "clarification" of it not being his fault if there weren't pictures again)

Wednesday we got to do some more service with the Bolivian lawnmower in the same place that we found the bees the other time we went to cut jungle. Lucky this time we were a little more careful and checked things before hand. From there I went to work in another area for the day with a different Elder to see how things are going. It was very strange to be in a different area, especially because I didn't know very much of the area. It was fun though.

Thursday we had a super fun Zone meeting, followed closely by doing the real work: eating lunch. The way that people in our area had time, we ended up walking a lot from one side on our area to the other. But the good thing is that all our walking was rewarded. Friday we decided to use as a day to share the #Gracias cards, mostly because no one had time to visit. We had a very interesting experience as well; as we went to talk with someone waiting a Micro, we were told 'somos católicos, no hablamos de otras religiones; no pecamos como así.' (We are Catholics, we don't talk about other religions and we don't sin either) In respect we started to back off and offer them a picture of Christ, which they strongly rejected saying 'no nos gusta Jesucristo, ni su madra ni su padre. No nada; somos ateos.' (we do not like Jesus Christ, nor his madra nor his father. No, nothing; we are atheists) I felt kind of bad for turning a God-fearing man into an athiest so quickly, but we moved on somehow.
Saturday we helped a family a little move a bit of dirt from place to place (felt like a roadworker in his giant CAT moving earth around). We taught a little then went to the baptism of a family that the other Elders in Los Pinos found, then waited in the chapel until ward council before returning home. On Sunday we got someone that we visited with that morning attend church with us, so that was good. We also met some references from members about super less active families in our area, but one of them we might not be able to teach. Very intesting sometimes the history of people.
Hope everything up north is going well, and the future Elder going to Argentina is practicing his 'j' sounds to put to use in that unique accent.
With love,
Elder Yates

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

¡Mail Time! (Monday, April 20)

Hurray for more time to write back to the States. This week was a little boring in regards to fun activities and adventures, but I do have some pictures to share, so I'll share those.
This week we had a member of the 70 (Elder Waddell) come and visit our lil' ol' mission. As such, almost our entire Thursday was spent sitting in a chapel and listening to him. We only had a little time in the morning to study and eat a quick lunch before running over to get ready to be spiritually enlightened. On a side note, as we were eating we got a little visit from traveling preachers from another Church. We talked a little before they went off on their way. Anywhozit, Elder Waddell is a giant - even taller than E' Fleming. He also served as a missionary and mission president in Spain - Barcelona. A very cool guy.
On Sunday we had Stake Conference, in which another member of 70 (Elder IDontRemember) visited and talked a little. It was also really good. The rest of the day of Sunday was pretty relaxed as we spent the majority of the day with members visiting and talking. The night before (Saturday) we had originally planned to go to a sesson of the Stake Conference, as it was called La obra de salvation (The work of salvation), but we suddenly got a call telling us we couldn't go. As such, we were left without plans and walked around a bit trying to find someone that didn't go. Super fun.
I've written before about 2 specific investigators recently, and I'll take a little time to update what's happened. First, we had one that was doing well and getting ready for baptism. However, yesterday, he didn't make it to the conference. A little worried, we went over to try and complete our scheduled visit with him, only to learn that he had left to go to another church. Methinks we didn't do very well explaining the Restauración. The other, that was professing to see demons, we managed to find again. We also helped him get rid of all of his 'Saints' and images he had around his house. Unfortunately, instead of joining us in the Conference, he went shopping. The important things I guess.
Monday we didn't do much, as we had no activity as a Zone. Instead we went home and relaxed a bit. Then we enjoyed the sensation of having all plans fail and start knocked doors again. Unfortunately there was no grand experience this time. Martes (Tuesday) we went and helped a joven (youth) prepare his mission papers before having a few lessons. (His brother, Elder Llanque, is serving in Salta, Argentina btw) In the night we went and visited again with the Flia Linarez, and I'm sure photos have already arrived up there. Wednesday we had the great pleasure to have a repeat of Monday. However, we had the luck of also finding other religious preachers, so at least we had some people to talk to, right?
Love and photos incoming,
Elder Yates

Pictures of things mentioned in letter from April 13

Always fun to see reminder from home                Perhaps this is the "alternative"
                                                                                                                         Bolivian lawnmower?

Fun at the zoo with the missionaries

What a beautiful spot - made better because Elder Yates is there

Love the scenery of this zoo!
Always searching for that "elusive" investigator.

Pictures from their new digs Elder Yates and Elder Moreno moved into. Even though it's cooling off, they still make good use of those floor fans :)

Monday, April 13, 2015

Más Cartas (More letters)

Muy buenos días todos, espero que su semana pasada fue bien, y que estén animados a leer mis cartas otra vez. Aunque mi memoria es horrible, me parece que eso no les importa mucho a ustedes (Good morning everyone, hope your week was good, and are encouraged to read my letters again. Although my memory is horrible, I think that does not matter much to you). Please don't kill me if this letter isn't 'missionary standard.' =/
For a little activity Monday we went to the zoo and looked at some animals locked up in their little cages. We also saw some fishes swimming in their little tanks. We enjoyed the time to walk around peacefully and not get rejected when we tried to preach the gospel a little. While the animals are good listeners, they're not exactly the best at understanding or responding to questions, so we might have to let them go as investigators. So sad. This time might have been a little better than the last time as more of the animals were awake, and we got to meet some perezosos (sloths). Very cool.
On Tuesday we moved into the new little casa. Unfortunately I didn't take any pictures, so let that be a little anxious suprise for this next week. On Wednesday we used a little time to get everything a little straightened up and organized as our Tuesday was packed pretty tight. On our adventures Wednesday we managed to find a person in a very interesting situation; ever since his moto accident, he has seen 'personas en todo negro' (people all in black) that others have told him is the Devil trying to kill him. Oddly enough we havn't been able to meet him since the first encounter...
Thursday was a little change of pace as E' Fleming y yo switched places for the day to see how the areas are doing. Luckily E' Fleming and E' Moreno had a pretty good day in our area. My day, however, was a little less exciting as (E' Fleming and E' Gonzalez being secretaries) we got to do some work in the office. We did leave to proselyte and have people to visit, but poor them being in the office every day. 
Saturday was the day of celebrations in the ward, as it was the birthday of the son of the bishop, a marriage, and the Mormon Día de los Hijos fiestas (Children's Day party) as it was actually on Sunday. Not entirely sure if the States has Children's Day, but down here it's pretty popular. We didn't get to go to any party except the marriage in the evening, so we kept ourselves busy visiting people instead. Oh well, maybe next time.
Sunday was also pretty peaceful, as once again our investigator con fecha asisted. He is really moving along well and will be baptized soon. We did have some good lessons this day, but because it was día de los hijos and almost everything was free for children, many of the families were absent from their homes. 
It's actually starting to get a little chilly down here, as the winter is approaching for us. And it's about time, as I've been in time of summer for almost a year. And, if it was possible, there's even more clouds and rain now. Woohoo.
Artísimo amor,
Elder Yates

Monday, April 6, 2015

La Carta (the letter, Monday, April 6)

Well, here we are again, stuck in the same ol' rut of me writing an email and several other people (hopefully) waiting to gain a glimpse into one of the best currently living lives. Hope that everyone brought your popcorn and soda so that, after reading this, they can go and see a good movie. Maybe they'll actually see a plot there.

Bueno, the biggst and most obvious thing to talk about from this last week was the 185th General Conference. We got the priviledge to watch 4 of the sessions (the priesthood session plays too late here) these past two days. And, I'm happy to note, we even managed to go and have some ice cream after a Saturday session. It may not be a Blizzard after Priesthood, but it's the best we can do down here. We practically spent the whole weekend in the Stake center since our area is a good distance away and made traveling not much more than a waste of time. The good news is that the benches arn't too bad and is one of the few buildings that actually has AC. Not that we really need AC right now, as it is (finally) cooling down a little. We also managed to find the Conference in English, which we enjoyed to it's fullness - except when the talkers gave their talk in Spanish; then we changed the channel. I can honestly say that, no matter the language, the talks are best in the original language.
While I don't have the time, ability, nor desire to talk about the Conference in its entirely, I'll share a few little notes. First, there was much calling to repentance, especially about the use of cellphones. Interestingly enough, the harshness in English was toned down a little in the Spanish translations. Second, there seems to have been objections in the Sustaining of the Authorities, which I've been told is the first time since the 80's I think. On a side note, a few of the General Authorites looked a little worse for wear. Third, one of the Twelve didn't give a talk this Conference, unusual because, if I remember correctly, all of them always give a talk (I won't tell you who didn't talk; let that be a little scavenger hunt for ya'll if you didn't notice). All in all, certainly a memerable Conference.
Anyway, the week was pretty interesting for us, especially as it was the Semana Santa (Easter Week). As such, people were a little more receptive than normal. Especially in viernes santo (Good Friday) we did significantly less walking than other days. I did manage to gleam a little insights into the largely Catholic traditions around these parts for this time. Apparently this is the great time of fish eating, with all the little tiendas (stores) proclaiming their selling of different fishes, due to the tradition of not eating read meats. And, as I thought before, it is also the time to do one's semi-yearly reconciliation with God in church, as we got many people telling us they already had plans to attend their church this weekend.
In an attempt to avoid bashing on other churches, let's just say that a few other churches also get pretty excited during this season and send out people to proclaim their doctrine. Luckily they tend to avoid us for the most part, but every once in a while things get a little interesting - a situation I had hoped to avoid by not going to the Bible belt. Ah well, I guess mankind really isn't too different when it comes to personal beliefs across nations. However, it really gets interesting when, while visiting with an investigator, another preacher passes by the house and tries to get our attention, and the investigator then proceeds to attack him. That may have happened to us a time or two this week...
We started eating lunch with a different family this week, and I'm not to sure if they'll post pictures (Sorry Mom) but I'll see what I can do. We're also planning on moving houses this week, so I might include some bonus photos en cambio (of the transfer).
Muy lovingly,
Elder Yates