Sunday, January 11, 2015

Week #75 - Happy New Year - Los Anos Viejos!

HOLA como estan?

Well, I will start off like always by answering your wonderful questions!!

1- Any suggestions for our 2015 Family Theme?

1- What are your goals for this year as a family? The first idea that come to mind is, "The Gnarly Farleys".

2- Have you heard of any other parents coming to pick their missionaries up from your mission?  Does Pres. Riggins even give permission for that?

2- I have heard of a ton of people who picked up there son or daughter from the mission!

3-  We can’t decide if we should pick you up so that we can see Ecuador, or if we should let you just come home like normal so you have the traditional homecoming at the airport.  We see pluses and minus to both.

3- Honestly, if you guys came down here to pick me up, or if you didn't, I am good with anything.  It really doesn't matter to me!!  You guys make the decision and I will do whatever, but I need to know what you are going to do because the mission is going to ask me how I am going to go home.  And more specifically if you guys are going to come down to pick me up!! So, I would need to tell them.

4-  What would you prefer?  If you come home like normal, then we will want to take you on a trip to Ecuador with us (at some point) so that we can sight-see and meet people from your mission to our hearts content.  Kendall can even come with us.  I am only bringing this up now because if we are coming to get you, we need to make all of our arrangements now.  Please be honest and tell us what you prefer. 

4- The truth is that I am good with either of them!!! I think both would be super cool!! You guys can decide. (But I think you guys should--but if you don't its alright.)

5- What is one thing you love most about Ecuador?

5- I LOVE THE FOOD AND THE PEOPLE!!! They are both awesome!  I have made so many friends here and I have fallen in love with the food!!

Well, now I will tell you guys about my week--;)

Tuesday we started our day a little early and we went around and talked to all of the big businesses and we thanked them for working so well in their jobs.  Then we shared with them a booklet or something similar.  It was really cool because in those short conversations I could see their countenance change from a bitter face to a happy joyful face.  It was a great experience!!! Then for the rest of the day we worked to help the people come to church.

Wednesday we did the same thing.  We went around to all of the businesses and thanked them and then shared with them a gift.  Then we went to about everyone we could find to invite them to come to church.  But because it was December 31st, NO ONE was home.  They were all getting ready for their parties.  So, we went to visit all of the members and wished them a wonderful new year.  This day they gave us sooo much food!!! ;)

This week Presidente changed P-day from Monday to Thursday so we just stayed home and rested all day!!!

Friday we left to work and we tried to visit as many people as we could but hardly anyone was home because everyone left to go on a trip so it was kinda hard to find a person who wasn't busy!! But we did our best and we taught some people.

Saturday we did the same thing.  We worked as hard as we could but because it was still vacations here there were not a whole lot of people around. But we taught some people!!!  We also learned that a convert that was baptized a year ago has fallen away from the church.  That was frustrating! Also this day, this kid told us that he thought Joseph Smith was in hell and that the Book of Mormon is false.  This has saddened my heart greatly because he had helped us teach people just a couple of weeks ago!! So, Saturday I was sad and a little disheartened, but at the same time I felt strength because my testimony was getting stronger and I felt a power in the gospel!! I will do what is in my power to help this young adult.

Sunday was a day full of meetings like always!!!

Well, this was basically my week. I hope that you guys can feel what its like to be a missionary through my letters!!! BTW-new year is crazy here!!! There are so many explosions and fireworks and people burn huge statues in the street and right before they do that they fill them with fireworks!!! There is so much going on that it is literally a mad house!!! It is called los anos viejos.  

Los Anos Viejos (the old years)

Ecuadorians make effigies (statues) made from clothes stuffed with straw that represent them and their sins or faults from the old year.  When they ring in the new year, they burn the effigy symbolizing the ending of their old selves and the beginning of their new selves in the new year.

Then the next day NOTHING is open everything was closed and we could do anything!!!! It was awesome!!!

Well, I love you guys and I pray for you guys.  I love you a lot!

Elder Farley 

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