Monday, May 30, 2011

Met Zone Goal!

Look . . . a beautiful flower!
Dear Family, So today I am writing super early because we have a special zone council today. Usually just the zone leaders go, but this time all the district leaders are coming too. This week has been super awesome and it's weeks like these that make me wish that the mission would never end!! So this week, we started out with 8 baptisms as a zone and we ended the week and the month with 19 baptisms in total. We all worked hard this week to meet the goal. Basically from Wednesday to Saturday we did not work in our area. On Wednesday, I went to Siqiurres to do 3 baptismal interviews. On Thursday, I went to Limon to do another interview, but the kid never showed up and my companion traveled a ton to do a few baptism interviews. On Friday, the APs came to visit the zone and so we went with them to other areas. On Saturday, we went to La Rita where they baptized 2 families, a total of 8 people. Basically we made the goal because of this area and so we are really grateful for them. So basically that was my week in a nutshell. It was really crazy but really awesome!
So DAD Happy Birthday to You!!!!!! I hope you have a happy birthday, I hope you cake is really good, only 6 more months till I can eat an ice cream cake again. I also hope you go to a really cool restaurant to eat really good food! So this is the last week of school! This school year has gone by really fast and I hope you all have a really good summer. Julia only one more week until you come to Costa Rica! I hope you have lots of fun!!! So yesterday during church, I was reading my Patriarchal blessing and I found something new that I had never noticed before. It mention faithfulness about 12 times, either me being faithful, being blessed for my faithfulness, helping others be more faithful or people looking up to me because of my faithfulness. So I was thinking about that all yesterday, about how I can be more faithful as a missionary and as a regular person after the mission. So I love you all and I hope you have a fun last week of school!!! Love Elder Anthony Smith P.S. tell nick that I have like 3 letters for him, but I have had no time to send them so I will do that this week!!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

May 23: Officially 18 Months Out!

Dear Everyone,
Hey so I hope you all had a good week. Thanks for sending me Nick's letter . . . it's good to hear that he is doing ok!!!!!
So this week was really busy with lots of divisions and trying to help the zone out so that we can make our goal. Right now we have 8 baptisms and the goal is 17, but this week we have a lot of possibilities and so we are going to be working super hard this week too. Remember how last week I said that we finally had some new investigators. Well all of them are super cool, but for every single one, there is something that impeeds them from getting baptized this week--which kinda is too bad, but oh well. Franklin, this super cool reference that we got, totally wants to get baptized, but the only problem is that he has to get divorced. Alejandra just gave bith to her baby boy yesterday night and another investigator named Yesenia is in labor right now. The only posibility that we have is Martin to be baptized this week, but he isn't sure if he has to leave town this weekend for work.
So something I'd really like to do for super awesome really awesome converts is give them a triple and the bible after their baptism. Not the hardback or paper back version, but the leather ones that are really nice because it's a lot funner to read your scriptures when they are nice. So this week our ward is going to the temple so I am going to ask someone to pick me up some scriptures so that if and when I do have a baptism, I can already have this gift. So I'm hoping that using the consecrated fund for this is okay. I plan to give them to the adult converts and maybe something smaller for children . . . I will make sure that the scriptures will be for someone who will use and enjoy them!!!!!
Well this is going to be a short letter because I don't have a lot to write about. Some good news is that I completed 18 months in the mission this week so yeah, that's pretty cool!
So I hope you all have a fun week! This is basically the last week of school for ya all since the actual last week of school nothing is done. It's crazy that it's already summer vacation again!!
Well I love you all and I miss you all and I will see you in 6 months!!!! Love Elder Smith

Monday, May 16, 2011

Two Elders!

Dear Family and Nick oh wait Elder Smith,
Hey everyone I'm sure last week was super exciting with Nick entering the MTC. Its super cool that there are two missionaries in the fam!! 
So I don't have much time to write, but this week has been super good!!! For the past couple weeks my comp. and I have been trying to find new families to teach and we were a little discouraged cause it has been super hard to find people. Knocking doors has not been very effective so we hardly to it and whenever we contact a family, they are always from a different area. But this week we are starting to see the blessings that come from working hard. We received a couple references and one of them is a guy named Franklin who had an anurism, I think, a couple months ago and so he can't move half of his body. Well he came to Stake Conference last week and he really loved it. Yesterday we met with him for the first time and had a super awesome lesson. We taught the restoration and he sayed that last week he was praying and asking God to help show him the correct path just like Joseph Smith was trying to find the correct path. He also said that he believes that one of the ways that God answers prayers is though other people and that we were an answer to his prayer. So that was pretty cool!!! Also we did finally contact a family that lives in our area and they seem really cool and we are going to visit them this week. Also this week we are going to be doing lots of divisions!!!!!
So I love you all and I will send Nick a letter in the mail!!!! Also me and my comp will start thinking of ways to use the fund to help people.
Love Elder Smith

Monday, May 9, 2011

Happy Mother's Day

Dear Family and Friends,
I’m so glad that I got to talk with all of you yesterday I really enjoyed it and it gave me lots of animo (encouragement) to work hard for the next 6 months. So yesterday we had a super awesome Stake Conference here in Guapiles. President Galvez and his wife came and also Elder Laboriel who is a member of the Quorum of the Seventy. Before the conference started there was a little meeting for the recent converts and investigators and it was super awesome!!! President Galvez and Sister Galvez talked. President Galvez said there are 5 things that new members need to do, read the scriptures for 5 min. daily, pray at least 5 times a day, have family home evening, fast every month and pay tithing. As missionaries that is our goal with new converts, because if they can do those 5 things constantly than they will be prepared to go to the temple in one year and won’t go inactive. The stake conference was really good too. Elder Laborial gave a really good talk.
So I’m glad to hear that all went well for Nick’s farewell. It’s crazy to think that so much time has passed since my farewell. I’m sure Nick did a great job on his talk and I know that he is going to be an excellent missionary. Just have fun buddy and don’t worry if it’s hard at first, because it’s going to be. Just remember that it’s going to get harder before it gets easier and remember that as a missionary you are going to have special gifts of the spirit and you have the power of faith and prayer on your side! While you are in the MTC I will write to you, so mom please send me his MTC address, and then when you get out into the mission field I will email you, so also mom could you send me his email. Also upload pictures of the farewell and prom.
So since I haven’t written a lot about the people we are teaching I will write a little today. So we found this inactive family, the Bonilla family and they have been inactive for quite some time so we are trying to reactivate them. One of the daughters is living with a guy named Omar and he isn’t a member so we have been teaching them. He is really interested and is reading the Book of Mormon, the only problem is that they aren’t married and he works on Sunday. Something that we want to do with them is take them to the temple, now this is where part of Dad’s consecrated fund could come into hand. I could use some of the money to take families for a trip to the temple. We are allowed to take families to the temple because the spirit is really strong and lots of people get converted right there. Also part of Dad’s fund could help some people get married and something that I would like to do is be able to buy scriptures for the people that I baptize! So those are some things that I was thinking about! We are also teaching a young guy named Jose Luis. He is about 24 and has some member friends in another ward. A couple weeks ago he went to a young adult campout and he loved it. The only challenge we have with him is that he likes to visit his family in the morning on Sunday and so it’s hard to get him to come to church, but we are going to keep working with him. I told you about Alejandra--we are trying to fix a couple problems that the husband has and fortunately the members are willing to help us with this family. We are also working to find new investigators.
Well I love you all and once again I hope mom had a happy Mother’s Day and Nick, get ready to begin the coolest thing you have ever or will probably ever do!!!!!!!!!!!
Love Elder Smith
Please remember in the package you send to incule lots, but lots of family pics. and Dad you can send more talks too, cause I actually do listen to them and I like them too!!!!
NICK I LOVE YOU AND I WILL SEE YOU IN 2 YEARS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, May 2, 2011

It's May . . . only 6 more months!

Dear Everyone,
So you all have heard the news of Osama bin Laden. I was at a member's house last night and it came on the news! So I'd have to say that was the highlight of my week! Not too much has happened since the last time I wrote you. Thursday we had zone council with President and all the Zone Leaders. It wasn't too much fun because as a mission we did horrible this month. We only baptized 99 people and that's the lowest we have had in a long time so President kinda chopped our heads off (term we use as missionaries here) The good thing was Hermana Galvez made us these really sick hamburgers and I think they were the best ones I've have in 17 and a half months!! Also we watched a really cool talk that Elder Holland gave in January to the missionaries in the MTC. Nick you are going to be in the MTC for 3 months so I'm sure that some Apostles will visit while your there. Also Nick one thing I would suggest is that you take a voice recorder or a recording device so that you can record talks and lessons in your mission. That is something that I wish I would have done because I have heard some pretty amazing talks. Also I will think of some advice that I can give you this week and will share it with you when I call home. So about calling home this week. Well I can't call Sunday morning because I have church in the morning so maybe I could call in the evening or Monday evening. What I'm going to do is buy a international calling card so that I can quickly call you guys like Saturday in the morning and we can plan it all out.
So today we had a fun activity. A member took us up the mountain and we went hiking and it was pretty fun. This past week has been super super super hot, but today it rained a little bit and so it was a lot cooler. It was really jungely and it was really cool. I tood some pictures that I will upload right now. Well finally we are in May and I will be completing 18 months in the mission. It's hard to believe that I only have 6 months left and I'm sure that it is going to go by super fast.
So my new companion Elder Martinez is cool! We are working to find new investigators and help out our zone complete the goal we have. This week we have interviews with President, but this time he is going to come to all our houses, so that should be interesting.
Also about the shoulder bag. I actually don't have it anymore because I gave it to a missionary whose backpack broke, but in the MTC store they have really good bags and they are pretty cheap, so Nick could get one there. Well So I hope you all have a good week. Love you all and I cant wait to talk to you all for the last time in the mission!!!!
Love Elder Anthony Smith