Monday, May 27, 2013

Momentous week!

Well that's great that Connor got there without a hitch. Its crazy to think we are a full world width apart.
This week was a momentous week! Besides zone conference, I got attacked by a dog for the first time. I did pretty good, it was a medium sized dog so I held my ground and took a couple pretend (but very fierce) kicks at the dog and then kept walking. It was pretty terrifying, definitely got my heart pounding haha. The other missionaries keep asking me if anyone has tried to rob us yet. I am very curious how that will go, if it every really does happen. Every missionary I have talked to here seems to has a story about it so ... 

We do arrange with the members to go out with us and I spoke in church last Sunday. It is amazing the attention that the members give to missionaries here. Basically because every person in church is a convert, so the people here hold us in very high regard. So when i spoke it was like every person was staring with the most extreme intent, and they hung on to every word... so it was quite different than speaking in a ward back home. 

Zone conference was awesome! I got to get to know my mission president a little better which was fun. Before that however was of course all the lessons, there was a lot of emphasis on the concept of member missionary work. President Mehr specifically spoke about how we as missionaries are teachers and the members are finders. He also spoke concerning the problems or concerns that missionaries have regarding obedience. He is definitely an inspired man he spoke about every single thing I had questions about. My interview with the president went really well, I spent the most time with him out of all the missionaries cause right when i got in there someone from church headquarters had called him and he had to pay some bills for the mission right away so he spent about 15 minutes doing that while we just talked. So about 20 minutes into the interview, the interview actually started. We talked about lots of the doctrines in the scriptures we both enjoyed ,and we probably spent 10 minutes looking for one scripture that we both knew but we couldn't find. In the end we couldn't find it so he asked me to tell him what it is when I find it. It was Hebrews 11:3. 

The work here is going good. We taught one of our investigators the law of Chastity this week and we found out that the woman living with him is not his wife :/ bummer! He was married before and he hasn't been able to get a divorce so that is why he isn't married to the woman he is living with. He has however been working on the divorce for the past couple weeks (even before we started talking to him about it) so it should be wrapped up soon and he should be married. We also started teaching his younger sister and she loves the gospel too so hopefully she will get baptized too.

It's getting ever easier to wake up early and work out, which definitely helps throughout the day. I think I have already gained 5-10 pounds from both eating very well and working out every day. 

The rainy season has definitely started it has been raining quite a bit. It has basically been raining all day today and half of yesterday and some the day before. I have some pictures on the Savannah in which I am soaking wet. It's so funny here when people see you soaking wet they say "what are you thinking? you are going to get a cold" all I think is are you kidding me its like 80 degrees out haha. I just tell them "oh back home when it rains it is freezing so I am used to it"  I have also taught a lesson while the woman we are teaching is breast feeding (with nothing covering her or anything) its quite different here.

We had a big activity for all the missionaries last week in Port of Spain - it was like a sports activity. So since our apartment is the apartment in Port of Spain, it basically became the staging house. Lots of the missionaries didn't sleep at their apartments the night before so they could get to the activity so basically nobody had eaten breakfast. So I made pancakes for about a 10 missionaries. 
I'm starting to get into the swing of things here and getting use to the area. I know my way around the area really well now. However, with getting to know the investigators and people here I am really starting to understand the struggles of the area. It's pretty frustrating actually because I know that if people just listened to us and did what we asked them they could receive so so much more than they even know is possible. I have already been out in the field about a month, pretty crazy. Its weird to think I am living in the Caribbean.

Thanks for the scripture reference, Connor actually wrote me and said the same thing - to read John 15 Thank you for sharing that, I will read it. A mission is quite a bit more trying than I expected but it is awesome. 

I hope you guys have an awesome week and oh yes I have gotten a hair cut I did it myself hehe. 

Elder Schroeder

Me and my companion Elder Salima. A cool bug I found.
I'm learning Samoan from these two, Elder Gibson (left)
Elder Hill (left) Elder Ferrin (right) they came out with me from the MTC.
Soaking wet on the Savannah (middle of town)

Monday, May 13, 2013


Thanks for all the information about the money and razors and stuff. I got the Razors they were delivered Monday at 2pm my time. Thanks for sending them, they work great! It's nice to have enough to last the whole 2 years.  We have a district meeting every Tuesday at the mission office, that's when I picked them up. Yes, I have met the Monson's they are super nice. We had a car wash over there last p-day and they fed us. To answer the questions about how we contact people here, well when we meet people on the street you say "good day" (or whatever time of the day it is afternoon, night, morning, etc.) and then you say "how are you" or "wheas-da-seen" (if you say the word phonetically as fast as you can you will be saying it correctly) and when you say "wheas-da-seen" you put your hand up in front of you like you would if you yelled "what!" Then you start talking to the person. The people here are generally super nice and basically everyone you try to talk to will stop and listen to you, just out of respect. About a third of the people we talk to are pretty interested in what we have to say. Besides all that the people here are very, very friendly and very inviting. When we approach houses we go up to their front gate and yell "good day inside!" Which seemed a little weird at first. Now, I think knocking on doors would be weird.

We have two new investigators last week. They are the most promising they each love what we have to teach them. One of them we contacted calling into a house, the first time we met her we taught her a 45 minute lesson on the restoration and she loved it. She expressed to us that she wondered why there were so many churches on the earth today an that she had been searching for the one true church. The only sad thing is she doesn't live in our area so we are going to have to hand her off to the zone leaders. The second one is basically is a dream to teach, because she has never really been taught anything about religion, so we got to basically start from square one with her. She loves the lessons and has three kids two of which that are old enough to be baptized also! The last turns 8 at the end of next month. The only thing that is really difficult with the investigators here is getting them to come to church, cause basically everyone works on Sunday :/ which stinks cause it is a requirement for baptism. Those two investigators baptismal date is set for June 1 so hopefully they can come to church. The man I told you about last week is another investigator who is really progressing, he has been fellowshipped by the elders quorum president. He came to church on Sunday and loved it!! His baptismal date is the 25 of this month and it will be in the Ocean. He seems super excited so hopefully he keeps coming to church. It

One quick story on the third day I was here we visited a less active family. After we taught them a lesson on keeping the sabbath day holy they offered us food, so we said yes. They gave my Elder Salima and I huge plates of food we insisted that they eat with us but they said they will eat after, so after blessing it we started to eat. Their little kids probably around 4 and 5 were just hovering around us gawking at us. Elder Salima then yelled outside to the father and said "are your kids hungry" he yelled back saying "they better be they haven't eaten for two days" Elder Salima and I looked at each other with looks of astonishment and since both of the parents were out of the kitchen we promptly handed the food to the kids.

Also one last, thing keep your eyes peeled for a picture of me and my companion in the Ensign or Liahona, basically any church publication. At the baptism this last Saturday an older missionary couple showed up from church publicity. They had us each sign a release form for our pictures and she continued to take about a million pictures of the whole processions but mainly she focused on Elder Salima and I. So, if you see any pictures from Trinidad in church publications look out for me. haha..
 In ward council last week the Bishop talked about the fact the ward needs a disaster plan set up before the end of next week cause we will experience about 10 hurricanes this season... their hurricanes I found out are not really hurricanes, they are just big storms.

I learned some customs here this last week. Whenever people get together in somebodies home for a birthday or something they get a loaf of bread say a prayer holding it in their hands and then break it put honey over it and each person there eats a piece. Also here the people more so eat a small breakfast a very large lunch and a small dinner. I am pretty well used to it... your body feels way better too just saying. here is an interesting fact if you were wondering, there is a steel drum band that plays outside of your apartment pretty much every night. I didn't think that something like that would really happen. haha...

I love you all and it was great getting to see you guys and talk to you on Skype... tell Grandma I love her too.
Maracas Beach P-day