Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
The Lord of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Psalms 46:10-11

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

First Week!!!

SO!  First, MOM, I got the package!  It was postmarked August 19th so I guess thats when it got here.  THANK YOU!!!  There was SO much food but it's so appreciated! We pretty much just have it sitting open in the room and eat it at night. The chapstick was amazing as well!  Make sure to give Russ Johnson a big thanks for me, that was a really cool thing that he sent and I look forward to using it!

 So first off, my week was awesome!  Very hard, pretty long, but I think that the time will pick up as I go.  My zone is called Quiche and my area is Cunen.  It's the biggest zone in the mission and it's the furthest area from the mission home.  It was just opened 6 weeks ago by my comp and his old comp.

We live in the church in this tiny little room off the chapel (the only other room in the building) and we have a branch of about 40 people.  The members that come are pretty strong but we have a lot of nonmembers.  The area is HUGE!  I'ts the biggest in the mission, we can travel 11 hours and still be in our area.  We have a couple bigger cities around Cunén but they're like an hour or so away by bus.  We're really in the middle of nowhere, one of the pictures that I sent was taken just from where we were contacting. 

It's sometimes tough to find things to do but we're really trying hard to find people.  We work a lot with the members and less actives to try to increase church attendance.  Like I said our branch is pretty small and our branch president has been in for like 15 years so he's kind of lost the fire a bit.  But we're working hard, contacting quite a bit.  We have a few potentials, one guy named Andrés seems really positive.  There's also a bunch of languages in our area, we've been contacting out in the mountains and half the people we run into don't speak Spanish.  But its fun.  Like I said the days are kind of long right now but I think it'll be like the CCM/MTC and pick up as we go.  There's also a whole freaking ton of wild dogs, everywhere you turn there's wild dogs!  But its cool, I like the area I'm just scared because I'm probably going to be there for like 6 months, as time goes on I could see it becoming hard to find things to do but we're taking it one day at a time and just doing all that we can.  We're about 5 hours from Xela by the way and about 2 hours from all the other Elders in our zone (we dont have a district, just a zone). 
My comp is Elder Bitner, hes from Glendale, Arizona and he's really cool.  He's been out about 13 months.  (seeing that makes me feel like I'll never get to that point, I'm kind of feeling like 2 years is a really long time again but I'm having fun and I'm working hard and that's what counts, I know the time will go faster as long as I do that.  I really just wanna go to a city where its easier to find people to talk to but we're doing alright right now.  Plus, I think everyone's first area is tough so I'm just praying a LOT! haha).  Speaking of my comp though, yeah, he's really good, he knows the area really well so he knows the places that we can go to see people and talk to people.  People are pretty welcoming but after a first visit I think it gets a little rough.  Especially since the chapel that we live in is the only chapel for the entire area (meaning that we can go contacting an hour away but it's not super likely that people are going to come to church (we have members in these surrounding cities that don't even come very often, they're really good members too, it's just really tough to get them to church).  Yeah, ít's a tough area for sure, President said that they don't send just anybody to Cunén so that made me feel good.  I am having fun, I am enjoying myself, always remember that :).  I'm not sure what else to write, I'm doing the same thing and printing my emails and then writing and then I'll answer the emails from this week next week so yeah!  I love you all!  Have a really really great week and I'll talk to you next week!

-Elder Westenskow

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