Hola familia and friends! This week was pretty cool. It was full of new experiences, a new a record, and a lot of rain. First of all to answer your question dad, I have seen alligators out here. They aren't close to the city, but there is a place about a half an hour out of Coca where there are alligators and I've seen them. They are cool. There are also Boa Constrictors in all the rivers. I haven't seen one yet, but I really want to. There are all kinds of things out here haha. Including the piranha! I ate a piranha yesterday. I'll bet none of you have done that. It was pretty decent. I like Tilapia more but the piranha was pretty good too. The traditional Coca style of fishing here is awesome. They have a powder that comes from a plant that they throw in the rivers and it drugs the fish so that they swim slower. Then with their own two hands they grab the fish. They grabbed three piranhas this week. There is a recent convert family who went fishing for a branch activity. It's legit. We went fishing last Monday with a fishing line, and a bolt for weight and nothing else. It was awesome, but we didn't have a lot of time to stay there. This month, once again we have broken the record for baptisms in a month. Our last record was nice, but this time we finally broke double digits. We made it to ten and we were stoked. It was a good month for us. This week it was incredibly hot as well. The sun in Coca is unbelievably hot. It burned us up during the week. We have a very large teaching pool right now. We have worked like crazy to get out and find people and we have been able to do so very well lately. Now we just need to make sure these people progress. We have two baptisms set in stone for this month, maybe three in our sector, and we are happy about that. My comp and I are doing super good. Elder Arrieta is awesome. We have not had even one problem with anything. I never thought I'd say that about a Peruvian, Did I say that out-loud? oops. . . This week we didn't have great attendance at church because Sunday morning it poured rain like a beast. We were soaked when we got the the church and we live two blocks away. It's been good here in the oriente. I'm loving it here. It's hard, but we have been working as hard as we can and we are being blessed for it. I love you guys and I'll talk to ya next week. Hasta luego.
Hola familia and friends! This week was the craziest week of my life. We got the training with the branch council out of the way and it was great but that was only the first part. We also had a baptism in "La Cascada De Carachupa." The translation of that is the Waterfall of Facesuck. I don't why they named it that, but I'm sure someday soon I'll figure it out. It's a super cool waterfall though. The baptism went very well as well. We worked liked beasts this week and we had some good success. Bryan Rodriguez is progressing well and he will be baptized on the 12th of December. He wants to be a missionary which is super cool. He's awesome. Minerva Calderon has already started inviting people to her baptism on the 12th of December and there are others who can also be baptized in December. We are happy about that. We did an activity this week called the flight to Hawaii. We assigned four organizations to help us out. Well we get there to decorate and explain everything and one organization showed up, so in a moment of panic, we had to improvise a huge activity with tons of different parts. I volunteered to take on the management of three game at once; Elder Herrera took on one of the biggest activities by himself; my comp did a jeopardy game by himself; and there were many more things we had to do because nobody got there, but somehow we pulled it off. Elder Barnes was directing 65 people and throwing up every 30 minutes. It was awful but we did it, and it turned out being one of the best activities ever. It was crazy though. We went above and beyond the call of duty for that one. Then Saturday night after finishing this activity while us six elders were walking out of the chapel almost dead from the activity, the first councilor of the presidency assigned me a talk for the next day. It was good, so i gave my talk and we found out we lost our ward mission leader this week so we had to improvise gospel principles class. It went well. I had baptismal interviews to do, so I actually wasn't there but the elders did it well. Then our lunch fell through on Sunday. That was a bummer but another family gave us some rice and an egg. It was good. I can't complain. It was a crazy week, but there is a scripture that says "Hold on thy way" and that is what we are doing here in Coca. God is preparing the way and we are doing everything we can to be in the right place at the right time. That's about what happened this week. I love you guys and I'll talk to ya next week.
Hola familia and friends! This week was awesome! As a zone we are straight up goin beast mode in the jungle! To start the week we had the mission council meeting and for the first time in the history of the Ecuador Quito North mission the Zone Oriente Norte came out on top. This week we will also break the record for most baptisms and rescues that the zone has ever had in a month. I know we don't work to compete but crazy things are happening out here in the jungle. It's been incredible to see how things have lined up and how the Lord has prepared the way for so many blessings and miracles. Also, I know for a fact the God moves mountains. I saw one moved yesterday in the night. We had organized a training on the plan we are trying to put into practice with the members. Up to now there had not been much participation or support, and it was kind of like our last stab at success with the plan that we prepared and fasted and prayed for. Unbelievably they all showed up. The training went really well, and they are committed to use the folders we made and to complete with the familiy history plan we have. They left excited and ready to work and our branch council was very effective, We hope to see results very soon. We still lack a little, but we are very close now. For me, it was a mountain moved because I knew this plan would and can work, but there were times when I was the only one who stuck with it. Every part of the plan came from the area presidency and what they are asking so I knew it was right. I held on my way and last night we threw all the cards on the table and went all in and it appears we are going to come out on top so I'm excited. This week I also had the opportunity to baptize in a river. It was super cool. Lucresia and Alberto got baptized and it was a great service. We were very happy. Today we were able to Eat some giant worms and watch some monkeys play in a tree. It was pretty awesome. I love it here in Coca. It's the coolest place ever. There are so many things that are just awesome and the work is really starting to look up and we are happy about that. I love you guys and I'll send some pics today. I'll talk to ya next week.
Hola Familia and friends! This week was good. We are starting from the bottom with our less actives, but we found a ton this week, so we are happy about that. I finally met my comp. Cristian Arrieta from Lima, Peru, He is the first Peruano that I get along with super well, that is super humble, and super obedient, and hardworking. He's a beast and he is helping me out a ton. This week we were working super hard. We didn't have any trips to Quito which was good and I was happy. The other day we spent the whole day trying to find new investigators through recent converts and less actives and we didn't find anything. We got to our last appointment and as we were leaving, they stopped us and said, " could you guys visit our neighbor? He's passing through a ton of challenges and he is basically all alone. We went right in that moment to visit him and his name is Bryan Rodriguez. He is 15 years old and the coolest guy ever. We got there and he just said. I have no friends, but I know you guys will be my friends. The doors to my house are always open for you and he committed to go to church and everything. It was awesome. Things are progressing as well with our plan with the branch. We have training and activities planned that are going to help us out a lot. We are still crankin out some good stuff here in Coca. We tied the record for baptisms in the history of the zone this month and we are on track to shatter it in November and then Shatter it even more in December. I'm super excited to see what happens. There is a ton of potential out here. I'll send pics next week when I'm back in the jungle. I love you guys and I'll talk to ya next week. Hasta luego
Hola familia and friends! Well here is this week's update from the jungles of Ecuador. We had a good week. We headed to Quito for the last time on Tuesday and got things taken care of with my comp and his wisdom teeth. We came back and did everything we could in the few days we had, and we turned out a decent week. We had a baptism on Saturday and it was awesome. We were happy about that. We had a good solid attendance in the church and we have people progressing toward baptism. In the night we recieved changes. Elder Vargas got transferred to Otavalo and Elder Herrera went back to his sector. A beast of a DL got sent to me so I was thrilled for that. He is going to help me a lot. His name Elder Barnes. I know him super well, and he will help me a ton. My new companion is Elder Arrieta from Lima Peru. He has around 7 months in the mission, so he is pretty new. I really don't know much about him and I've never met him, so it should be a fun week getting to know him. I can't believe we are in November. That is blowing my mind right now. I feel like I blinked my eyes in January and I just opened them again on November 1st. It's been nuts. I love it here in the jungle. The people are great and there is a lot of work to be done here. I hope I'm here for awhile because there are a lot of things I'd like to do. I love you guys and I'll try to send pics..Talk to ya next week! Hasta luego.
This blog is dedicated to Easton Nielson's mission to Ecuador Quito North Mission.