Elder Ty Russell

Guatemala, Retalhuleu Mission

December 17 2012- Email #22

Dear Family,

This week flew flew flew by! I can hardly believe how fast the weeks are going. Especially now that it is the holiday season and we are so so busy. It seems that people are a little nicer around the Holiday season and we have a bit more success. No baptisms this week…. Kinda sad. But they are coming, dont you worry!

So I will start with kinda a scary story… Tuesday my comp and I were out and about and my comp had the feeling that before going home we should visit these members right? I was super tired and just wanted to go home but my comp said he felt the Spirit that we should visit them so we did. The visit was just normal, nothing special. But… on the way home we found out why the Lord prompted him to stop and visit these members… 2 teenagers 3 minutes from my apartment got shot right at the time we were visiting the members in the exact spot that we walk home every night. They apparently were involved in some kind of drug cartel and were both shot dead on the spot. How grateful I am for the Spirit that prompted my comanion and delayed us from walking into danger.

Also in regards to dangerous things… there was another 2 earthquakes Sunday morning super early! One at 4 in the morning was the most crazy. The funny thing is we had no idea it was an earthquake. We have this big table that leans up against the wall upstairs by our room and about 4 in the morning it fell and crashed really loud. It scared the crap out of Elder Riveras and me and we both woke up and looked at each other like “what the heck”! We opened the door and saw the table and just thought that it fell by chance… we had no idea it had been an earthquake… but we found out the next day. Apparently it was decently strong. I was sad I missed it!

I got your packages today! I got 2 from Katie (one yesterday and one today) and two from you guys today! I was super excited! I havent opened any of them yet, relax. And I believe I am going to wait until Christmas even though I do not want to!! I have to be strong!

Today was our mission Christmas Party! It was super cool. We went to this theme park here is Retalhuleu called Xetaleu to use the theatre they have. It was SO cool. It made me a bit baggy though… it was all decked out in Christmas decorations and such. All the zones in the mission had prepared an act or song or something cool like that and it went super well. Our zone sang Silent Night that transfered into Feliz Navidad at the end. It was super cool! I have it recorded on my camera so you will see that when I send my SD card home. Also after the acts we had a lunch with the mission and it was super good food! So that was our Christmas activity!

So to update you on my work… the most positive thing that happened was we found a new family (families are everything in the mission. The most important thing you can do is baptize a family). They are super positive and are not going to any church right now. They went to church Sunday and really liked it. We also have family night with them tonight with the Stake President in his house. I am super excited for them. They want to be baptized on the 28th of this month. The only obstacle is that… he drinks a lot. We are helping him though. He has already seen the change in his life this past week and we hope he can hold strong. We are visiting him every night to help him out.

Also Kelly and Douglas…Kelly is the investigator and she is 16… in other words she changes her mind every other day. Haha we are working with them but we are still not sure if the Mom will, in the end, give permission. She is super evangelical and doesn’t want her daughter baptized in her church. We will see what we can do about her this week!

Also we are working with the Dad of a lady in our ward. His name is Plassido and he is 86 years old! He came to church yesterday and liked it alot. We hope to have him also baptized on the 28th!

Well family that is about it for me this week! I hope you all know that I am doing well and loving life. This mission is changing the Ty Russell you knew (for better). I hope I am making you and the Lord proud every day.

Solo quierro compartir mi testimonio. Se que esta iglesia es verdadera. Se que, sin ninguna duda, que Jesucristo vive y es mi Salvador y Redentor. Se que El Libro de Mormon es verdadero y que Jose Smith fue un profeta llamado para restaurar la Igleia de Jesucristo mismo en la tierra otra vez. Se que la obra del Señor es especial y poderoso. Se que puede cambiar vidas y se que si anguien quierre obtener lo mismo testimonio solo hay que orar.

I love you all!

Elder Russell

P.S. From Ty’s mom….I put his testimony in Google Translate below:

I want to share my testimony. I know this church is true. I know, without a doubt, that Jesus Christ lives and is my Savior andRedeemer. I know the Book of Mormon is true and that Joseph Smith was a prophet called to restore the gospel of Jesus Christ himself on earth again. I know the Lord’s work is special and powerful. It can change lives and that if anguien quierreget the same testimony just have to pray.

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