This week was a big adventure! Me and Elder Strait are both new as zone leaders, and we are both new to our area! We arent sure what's going on or what President Martinez was thinking! Ha ha. On top of everything, we are in Villa Obispo, which is President and Sister Martinez's home ward! So we just got thrown into some new territory! It's been fun...it's extremey different than being in Santa Barbara. This is a big ward, with about 130 people on average who assist weekly.
The first few days we walked around confused, with our noses in the area map. The elders before us left some investigators so we tried to find them and found a few of them who are really good. The first day in the new area, the zone leaders had a conference in concepcion in the mission home, so we went up there and were trained by the assistants and president Martinez. I cant say I understood all of what they were saying. We had a giant pan of sea food for lunch which was interesting. It looked really expensive. I'll attach a picture.
The day after the conference we had a zone/district meeting which was good.....me and my companion are both still young missionaries and we have many missionaries in our zone who have more time or the same amount of time in our zone...and we are supposed to encourage them and pump them up to go find, teach, and baptize for the remission of sins. It is a challenge, but it's been good.
One of the days this week we gave four priesthood blessings of heath! We gave three to babies that were sick, and one to Carlos, a nonmember dad of a ward member who was hospitalized. The blessing to him was really good because just yesterday, the missionaries from a different area called us and said the blessing we gave to Carlos a few days ago worked and he loved our short visit. So they want us to stop by again! The other really awesome blessing was to Paola's son. Paola is one of our really good investigators. Its a long story, but basically, she was a reference to a different area, Avenida Alemania, from the headquarters of the church. She wants to get baptized. Avenida Alemania was actually in the same district as Santa Barbara, so in my district meetings, I had heard about Paola. One week in our district meeting, the missionaries in Avenida Alemania told us they had some news...that they found out that Paola is actually from the zone, in the area of Villa Obispo...so they passed them the reference. Our district was a little said but they did the right thing....then Ka-POW! All of the sudden I am in Villa Obispo! So that worked out awesome! We passed by Paola's house and we gave a blessing to her sick baby...the baby cried all through the blessing, then at the end he stopped crying. We left right after the blessing and then that night, Paola called us very emotional and said thank you so much for the blessing! She apologized that she had us leave so fast after the blessing and she just thanked us a lot for the blessing. So that was really cool!
So....the next major thing that happened.... wait, first, Sunday was good, we had stake conference, we didnt know anyone there still but it was good to meet so many members. .......yeah, so on P-day, we played soccer in the morning against another zone, and afterward my companion said that his stomach was on fire. My companion wont complain about anything unless its serious because he's a very tough man. He is buff. So he kept getting sicker and sicker. We tried to make it home on a bus, but we had to stop and get off so he could throw up. He kept throwing up and throwing up and we finally made it to the house were he rested for some hours. Then the mission president called us to crack the news that one of the missionaries in the zone has to go home. So that was lame...but we also told the mission president in that phone call that Elder Strait was extremely sick....since this is his home ward, President called some members and had them come and pick us up and take us to the emergency room. So...my companion went and ended up being there for about 5 hours. We gave him a blessing with a member and he got a little better. We got out at about 11 at night...then the next morning he still felt bad and Sister Martinez wanted to do some more exams on him, so we went to the hospital where we were there for 3 DAYS!!!!!!!!!!! So that's were I was for the last three days...we just barely got out. That is also why I didnt get on email on Monday. But...everything is alright. The hospital was really nice....almost like a hotel. It was boring but we laughed a lot. We tried to teach the gospel to all of the nurses. Ha ha. I'll tell you what, if a missionary ever doesnt want to work, just put him in the hospital for three days and he'll be dying to go out and work!
That's about all for now, I love you all, have a great week!
-Rich seafood from the zone leader conference! Mmm
-Pictures from the hospital.