Monday, August 25, 2014

Work Equals Investigators and Baptism Challenges!

Dear family,

Thanks for the emails and yes, the package got here. =) 

This week has been super awesome for me. We had a bit of a rough start because we spent nearly the entirety of Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday contacting with only one guy letting us into his house on Tuesday. And on Thursday we spent the entire day in peoples houses and finding new investigators. That day we found four new investigators and we had two of them say that they would be baptized. We also have another family that has been investigating the church for a while that are in the process of getting married so that they can get baptized. A couple months ago Elder Ballard told our mission president that if the missionaries did their contacts and were good then we would teach 4 lessons find 4 investigators and of those 2 would be ready for baptism.
Elder Bartlett

Elder Sirrine

I saw that come true this week. And it was awesome. The best thing was that on Saturday we found a family of 6 that wanted to listen to our message and that like us. It´s been a really intense week for us and I couldn´t be happier! Now the only thing that we need to do is keep teaching and for the people to come through on their end and it will be glorious. 

The other cool thing that happened this week is that I got to teach my companion how to make fried eggs. It´s a very funny and very stressful process the first time you do it. I was laughing a ton and he got upset because he broke an egg in the sink. My first time doing it I got frustrated because I couldn´t get the eggs to flip with the yolk intact. Now I´m like a pro and he is too. It´s pretty awesome. We also made vanilla pudding and it turned out really good. I think that I am becoming a pretty good cook now. The only problem is that I get a bit impatient and want to eat before things are totally done and ready to put together. But, I´m learning patience and it is going well.

Love you all tons and hope you have a fun week!


Monday, August 18, 2014

Trainer and a Baptismal Challege Accepted!

Dear Family,

Elder Sirrine and Old Train in Ushuaia
Thanks for the emails and the support. I love hearing from you guys every week. It sounds like all of you are having fun and that good things are happening in the family. It is way cool that there are new families in the ward now and I hope that Max has a lot of new friends. As for my update for the week it´s been a kind of crazy one for me. Monday and Tuesday I had to get up at three in the morning to make it to the bus station before 5 which is when the bus left. When I went out to Comodoro we got on the bus at 5 and we were two missionaries and two other people on the bus. It was practically empty. We listened to a lot of music and slept a ton that morning. It was four hours to get to Rio Grande where we picked up two other missionaries and a couple of other people. Then we had a 10 hour trip to Rio Gallegos. I now have my ID in Argentina which says that I am legal for two years but when I tried to cross the border into Chile they almost didn´t let me cross because I didn´t have my passport. But, I made it fine without any problems. We got to Rio Gallegos at 5 in the afternoon and chilled around til 9 when we went to the terminal and at 9:30 we headed out to Comodoro. We traveled and slept all night and got to Comodoro at like 7 in the morning. Then at 11:30 we were in the mission office and we got to meet all the new missionaries and have a meeting with our mission president. We had a really good lunch there, It was ravioli and there were a couple different kinds of salad.
Elder Sirrine and Penguin Display

Elder Sirrine and Elder Bartlett
I also met like six of the new missionaries that had either read my blog or that had heard about my blog. And apparently if you look up my mission on Google my face and my blog are the second things that show up. That was really weird to learn. I didn´t know that so many people read these emails. Then I met my comp, Elder Bartlett, he´s 6´5" tall and makes me feel like I´m tiny. It´s the weirdest feeling because I´m used to being one of the taller people and now I´m more normal. And then at 9 that night we headed back down to Ushuaia and spent another full day travelling. We got to Rio Gallegos at about 8 in the morning, got on another bus at 9ish and spent the rest of the day on the bus sleeping, talking and reading a bit. It was the longest ride that I have ever been on. It was TERRIBLE. We finally got to our apartment at like 10 o´clock on Thursday and I slept like a rock. It was so nice to have a real bed again. And then on Friday we went out to work and while we were contacting we found a family that accepted a baptismal date! It was so totally awesome!

I am super excited to get to work with Elder Bartlett now. He just has this amazing spirit and miracles are going to happen. I can feel it. These next transfers are going to be good ones for me and hopefully for him too. I hope that all of you have a great week too and I love you tons!


Monday, August 11, 2014

Transfer and Trainer

Dear Family,

Local Dog
Well, sounds like you all have had a very interesting week and that the whole family is going to be out in the world preaching the word of God. It´s a wonderful thing hearing about how all of you are changing and growing and to see how people are doing good things. I´m going to need to start writing Tyler and then Lynette when they head out. And I look forward to hearing when Zander gets his call and when he´s going into the MTC. It´s gonna be fun.

The biggest updates from this week are that we found a guy while contacting that let us talk to him for 20-30 minutes about the Book of Mormon and that told us that he wants to hear more of the word of God. It was really cool to see that even though the majority of the people here are really closed and don´t like to talk to us that there are people that are ready for the message of the gospel and that want to talk to us.
Mountain Homes in Winter

Elder Sirrine in Snows of Ushuaia

Also, today was transfer day and my comp, Elder Crespo, headed out at 5 in the morning to go up to his new area in Trelew. That was an adventure. We got up at three in the morning and finished getting all of his stuff ready and then at about 4 we started calling for a taxi to come and pick us up. There were none that answered the phone and we ended up at 5 trying to find a car and get to the terminal that is 20 minutes away in auto. We showed up in the car, he ran onto the bus and then the bus left. We were barely there on time to get him off on the right bus. And now I have to wait for another couple of days to go travel up to Comodoro to pick up my new companion. Because, I´M TRAINING!!!!!! I´m really super excited and very nervous about that because it´s a big responsibility to train a new elder. But, I know that I´ll be fine.

So, now I have to wait ´til thursday to find out who´s going to be my new companion. It´s gonna be a fun trip chilling on a bus for 3ish days. I´m looking forward to being able to sleep a lot. Outside of that the only other update is that it´s still snowing here in Ushuaia and that I am know finding the furthest houses up the mountain that I can get to. It´s been really fun hiking through the mountain trying to find people. Also, there´s a tv show called "Este es mi villa" or something like that and they did an episode in Ushuaia about Dos Banderas and Las Raices. That is my area. You can probably find the video on the internet and see what I get to see every day. Except they went during the summer and I´m here in winter but it´s pretty similar. Love you all tons and hope you have a spectacular week.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

Ushuaia Zone Conference Zone Photo

Elder Sirrine has now been part of the Ushuaia Zone for almost six weeks. This photo and others in the blog where taken by the Mission. Ushuaia is the farthest city south in the mission and is said to be the farthest southern city in the world and Elder Sirrine's mission gets its slogan from this city quoting scripture saying, " And lo I am with you always even unto the ends of the world.
Ushuaia Zone

Monday, August 4, 2014

Mud and a Foursome

Dear Family,

Thanks for the updates y´all sent me. I´m glad you all made it home safe from your trip. Thanks for the pictures too. It´s fun to see you all.

From my end this week has been really peaceful. We found a couple of families to teach, we also had a fun time Saturday playing a bit in the mud because it´s heating up here and so all of the snow is melting and what is left in the majority of my area is mud. When the cars drive by they splash us and we also got into a bit of a mud fight. Elder Crespo, my comp,
Elder Crespo, Elder Sirrine's Comp

Elder Crespo Muddy

Elder Sirrine In Pension

Elder Sirrine Muddy

Bracelet made by member

Other Elder in Pension and Elder Crespo

Last of the Fab Four Elders
was totally covered and I was more or less muddy. He was so upset that he got dirty, apparently being clean is really important to him even though he´s really an anti social person. So, that was fun to find out. Also we had a Tsunami this week (where all the missionaries in the zone go and talk to people in the same area to help a companionship find more investigators) We contacted for two hours more or less and were able to give like 40 references to the hermanas. That was really awesome. I think the zone leaders said that they were going to start doing more tsunamis in the zone now that this time worked so well for us. The other thing that was cool is that one of the young women in the ward made me a bracelet that has my name on it. Her family is totally awesome and I love going to their house on Sundays for lunch. The best part of the branch here is that the members that give us lunch are all really awesome and the rest of the members are friendly to us. The problem in the branch is that there are very few people that are really active and a lot of people spread rumors about the missionaries about members and everything else. It´s really irritating for me to see that. But, we´re working with the leaders in the branch and it´s been getting better. When I got here it was a lot more screwed up.

It´s been cool to see the branch change, to learn how to teach English classes, and to find more people. Things have also been a lot better with Elder Crespo because the other two are moving out soon to their new pension so he´s been a lot more chill. I´ve seen him grow this transfer. It´s been fun to help him come out of his shell a bit and to help him enjoy being a missionary. He´s a good guy and I like him a lot. And transfers are coming up next week which means that he might be leaving Ushuaia. It´ll be interesting to see what all goes down. 

Also, I haven´t gotten the package yet but it should be on its way down here. And yes, Elder Carter is still in the office. I hope you all have a wonderful week and that things all go well for you. Love you tons!

Love, Michael

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Serving in the Snow of Ushuaia

Dear Family,

Thanks for the emails and for the photos. I love hearing about what you all are up to. Also, to me it isn´t going to be bad for me that you all go off and have fun. I just like to hear from you. And I love seeing you all. I hope you are enjoying the vacations and that the heat isn´t doing you harm.

Elder Sirrine Loving the Snow
Newest Investigator
As for me I am totally enjoying the snow. We had about three days straight of snowfall and it got up to a little below my knees in some places. It has been a blast walking and playing in the snow. But now it´s getting warmer and all the snow is starting to disappear. It´s been really sad watching it go away. But while it was here it was a ton of fun. We made a snow man, slipped around everywhere and almost got lost a couple of times on the mountain that is my area. Yeah, my area is the mountain in Ushuaia and there are some parts that you can only get to by hiking about 30 minutes and now with the snow it´s even better. We did divisions twice this week once with the zone leaders and once with our district leader. When I was with one of my zone leaders in my area we went to go contact people and we walked for about 20 minutes without seeing many houses and when we got to a group of them the first house that we knocked we got invited in and got to teach the family about the restoration of the gospel. They were totally awesome. The daugther has a lot of questions about the church and told us that she hadn´t found a church yet that really filled her. So we´re working with them and the other time we did divisions my companion found another family in my area that we are going to teach. It´s totally awesome to see that we can find people and I am a firm believer in that when we do divisions miracles happen. 
Elder Sirrine Drinking Cold Water
Name Tags in the Snow

Making a Snow Angel

Snow Angel Named Elder

Ushuaia Snow Plow

Ushuaia  Forest

One of the four Elders with Giant Ice Cycle
It´s one of the greatest feelings to see the miracles and to know that the Lord has His hand in this work. The other really cool thing that happened this week is that we had an investigator come to our English classes on Saturday. My companion and I were way up the mountain in the woods doing contacts and all the other missionaries were way far into their areas too. So it was an adventure getting all of us out there to give the class but when we got there it was a really cool experience and we had a totally awesome lesson. And then the investigator invited us back to her house and we got to talk to the whole family and have a good lesson. It´s been a really fun week. Also, today we got together the four of us that are living in the pension right now and we had a chat about what all has been going on because we´re all getting really irritated with each other this week.

And as a result of that we saw that a lot of the things that we were doing weren´t really all that good and that we needed to be a lot better than what we are. So we set goals with the four of us and decided how we are going to be better about being obedient. The most impactful thing that my district leader told us, he lives with us right now, was that if we don´t do good on our missions then our children will be cursed and the curse would be that they would be less active or inactive. He also told us that if we don´t step up and fix the obedience in the mission then this mission was going to die. So, we´re all very animated to be a lot better this week. It´s going to be really cool to see how it all plays out for us this week. Love you all tons and hope things go well for you!