Monday, November 29, 2010

Lots to Talk About

Dear Everyone,

Where to begin? First off thanks for the testimonies. Hermana Heaton wants us to put them in copies of The Book of Mormon. So I`m going to type them all up, make some copies of them, and glue them in the books. I think it`s a really cool idea. Anyways keep the testimonies coming. Gracias.

I can`t believe December starts this week. Cameron you`re turning twelve. Christmas is in a few weeks. Where does the time go? I have to figure out the calling information. The numbers here changed so I have to go figure out what to do. I will get that info to you.

Thanksgiving was interesting. It all started a few weeks ago. The zone leaders had thought about having a zone lunch on Thanksgiving. We all said, "Cool. Let`s do it." A week before Thanksgiving, it still wasn`t planned. I don`t know what the zone leaders were doing. Elder Longfellow talked to the zone leaders and our district leader last Wednesday at zone conference to figure out what we were doing. They said they had district service and that the whole zone lunch was off. That was dumb because we are part of the district and we weren`t invited. Plus they said that President Heaton didn`t want anyone leaving their areas. Most of us think they made that up. Anyways that night we found out that that Elder Longfellow and I and two other missionaries weren`t invited because we lived "too far away". We looked at a map and realized we live just a little bit further. It takes the zone leaders and our district leaders just about the same time to get there on a bus. Anyways Elder Longfellow and I said, " I don`t think so. We`re going to enjoy Thanksgiving." Our zone leaders and district leader ate together. They had to leave their area to go to the restaurant which was one of the reasons why we couldn`t go. Didn`t make sense. The two of us got together with some other Elders. We had to wait for the zls and dl to finish eating and then we went. They still don`t know that the two of us went and that`s how it`s going to stay. We ate at a chinese buffet. It was pretty good. It was no turkey dinner but it was good enough.

Your Thanksgiving sounded fun with all the grandkids. Did everyone enjoy my piece of pie? Did anyone go to the Turkey Bowl? If not you`re bums. How was the parade? I hope you all took pictures that you can sen me.

About the money. Whenever you send me money Mom I just take it out because the dollar`s value is always changing. I don`t want to risk the dollar losing a lot of value and me losing money. I take it out and hide it. Plus there are quite a few places that don`t accept cards. That`s why it looks like I never have money. Don`t worry though. I do. I get plenty of money every month. I have everything I need. Now I`m going to buy a shaver. That should save some time in the morning. Shaving is not fun. If you read this, Thanks Grandma and Grandpa.

The work is going well. We have a pretty big teaching pool. The problem in this area is that we can never find our investigators again. We find them and have a great lesson and then we`re never able to find them again. We`re doing well though. We have some investigaotrs that are progressing. We found an awesome Catholic family last week. That was awesome becasue most Catholics never let us in. They`re some really stubborn people. Most aren`t aren`t open to learning more. This family was though. they didn`t seem to interested at the beginning of the lesson but as time went on the mom started saying, "You know I`ve seen your churches and I`ve always wondered what you believe." They committed to read The Book of Mormon. At the end of the lesson, we got the dad to pray. At first, he felt uncomfortable doing it so I did an example and then he said one. It was short, sweet, and to the point. We have a lesson with them on Wednesday. Their name is familia Olivera. Our investigator Nelly isn`t progressing very much any more. We haven`t been able to get in and have a real lesson with her. We always have to stand at her gate. We`re thinking about dropping her pretty soon if she doesn`t make some progress. We`ve been changing the way we talk with people. We`ve been really persistent. We don`t take no for an answer. We`ve been having a lot of success because of it.

Well that`s it for this week. Make sure the Christmas lights look awesome. Make me proud. Everyone make it a good week. Until next week...

Les quiero,
Elder Jones

Monday, November 22, 2010

I Have a Lot to Write About

Dear Family and anyone else that reads this,

First off, Hermana Heaton wants all of you do something. She is doing a Christmas activity and needs all your testimonies. So by next week I need you all to send me your testimonies. Those of you that know Spanish can write them in Spanish, of course. For those that don`t speak Spanish, write them in English and they will get translated. They don`t need to be long. Just write what you feel like writing. Gracias.

There was no uruguay t-shirt in the package to answer the question. I did get the t-shirt from Blaine and Carly`s wedding.

Baby Gavin sounds good. I`m happy to hear that. He sounds like a normal Jones baby. Nice and big, especially the head. I`m not surprised. Maybe he`ll be beat Cameron as far as weight goes. I`ll bet you`d love that Jenny. Haha.

That would have been awesome if you went to Church with a half haircut, Weston. You should have left it and grown out an afro. Mom and Dad probably wouldn`t have gone for that. Too bad. You`d fit in really well with the Uruguayo boys. They have some ugly haircuts.

I hope your tooth gets better soon Dad. Tooth aches are defenitely not something I like. Good thing we have pain pills. Anyways have fun with that.

I`m not sure how my Thanksgiving is goin got turn out. Supposedly, we`r eating as a zone. That`s not set in stone yet. We`ll see what happens. Hopefully it will be better that being stuck in the MTC. It sounds like your Thanksgiving will be fun. Are you all going to the Turkey Bowl? You`d better. I hope you all enjoy eating a piece of pie(minus pumpkin yuck) in my behalf. Let me know how it all goes having all the family there.

I did divisions last week with Elder Christoffersen. He`s only in his second change so he still can`t speak the greatest. It was all up to me. I was pretty nervous the whole time. That was my first time working with someone so young in the mission. It was a big learning experience.

The work is going well. We`ve been finding a lot of new investigators. The problem is we can never find them again. That gets frustrating because thye`re cool and then they disappear. We do have some progressing investigators though. Our best investigator is Nelly. She`s making good progress. We haven`t been able to have a sit-down lesson with her for a couple weeks. We always have to stand at her gate and talk. She`s reading the Book of Mormon diligently. When I was on sivisions with Elder Christoffersen, she told me, "No one could have made up this book. The names and the stories. It`s not possible." That made me happy. She said she believes the book is true, she doesn`t want to pray about it. Well it`s not that she doesn`t want to; she doesn`t see the need to do it. We`re going to help understand so she can get her own testimony. Our mission goal is to have a "White Christmas", and Nelly is going to give us a "White Christmas".

We found a really cool guy yesterday. His name is Jorge We contacted him a while ago and he told us that if we ever saw sititng in his yard, we culd go and talk to him. Yesterday afternoon we saw him sitting in his front yard and pounced. We sat on the wall and chatted for a while. We got to know him and then started to teach him about the Restoration. When we got to the Josè Smith story he was still listening but didn`t seem all too interested. Just then a younger guy walked by. He was a recent convert that Elder Longfellow and I met last week. Apparently the two know each other. Anyways this young guy just stats testifying to Jorge about the truthfulness of the gospel. He told him he had the Melquisadec(not sure how it`s spelled) priesthood. He showed him his oil vile and said that he could give blessings. He told him how his life had changed since becoming a member. It was PERFECT. Jorge started to really get interested. We explained the Book of Mormon and invited him to read it. We told him we wanted to give him a pamphlet and the Book of Mormon. Apparently he thought that we were just going to give him the pamphlet because he said, "I don`t want that. I want the Book of Mormon." It was awesome. The Lord defenitely had a part in that. He put that recent convert there at the right time. The Lord works in mysterious ways but HIs way is ALWAYS the best.

It`s great being part of the Lord`s work. I love testifying even when most of the people don`t want to listen. My testimony gets strengthened daily. I`m learning a lot and I love it. I`m so glad I got sent to Uruguay . I just hope I can fulfill my purpose here. I agree wihtoy Dad. It`s great being part of the Lord`s work. It`s defenitely not easy but so rewarding. The Lord always prepares a way.

I guess that`s it for this week. Have a great Thnksgiving. Enjoy your feast. I hope you all have a good week.

Les quiero,
Elder Jones

Monday, November 15, 2010

What A Week

Dear Family,

First off, thanks for the sending the money for my new camera. It works great. I`m not sure what happened to the old one. I`m defenitely going to save money by not having to buy a bunch of batteries. I christened it today. Elder Longfellow and I went to a huge cemetery. We had to have a permit to take pictues. There were even some open graves. We couldn`t see any bones or stuff. We also walked by the ocean and got a some cool shots of Montevideo . The camera works great. Thanks for the Christmas present Mom and Dad.

Last Tuesday and Wednesday, we had a training conference. I`m pretty sure I mentioned that last week. It was great. A lot of the other missionaries were whining. They said it was boring and that they didn`t learn a lot. Oh well; their loss. I learned a lot. Presidente and Hermana Heaton and the AP`s taught. Everything came right out of Preach My Gospel. A lot of missionaries just aren`t studying Preach My Gospel enough to keep those principles in their heads, myself included. We did a lot of practicing. I was on divisions with Elder Wilson. His comp and my comp already had the training so the two of us got put together. He`s younger in the mission so I was leading the lessons. It felt good. It was a new experience. I got to talk for once. My last few comps, and current comp, are all talkers. They don`t give me a lot of time to talk. I hope that will change. I hope I become senior comp soon so I can talk more. It was a great training meeting. It helped me realize where I need to improve.

We`ve lost some investigators. Andrès, one of our best, dropped us. He said he wasn`t really interested anymore. He was too busy at work and didn`t have time for us. That was a big bummer. Ana Laura, another great one, is out of town. She`s supposed to be back this week. Nelly is doing great though. We talked with her yesterday. She started reading 1 Nephi. She sais she believes the Book of Mormon is true. She hasn`t prayed yet though. We explained that we have to pray to receive a witness from the Spirit. She said she would read and pray. We mentioned baptism again. She was baptized in the Catholic church and didn`t see the need to get baptized again. We quickly explained the priesthood because we were short in time. She understood. We set up another lesson for this week. That`s the report there.

I saw a poster for Harry Potter 7 today. It looks like it comes out this Friday, at least down here. That makes me trunky. I`m sure a lot of you will be seeing it. Don`t tell me anything about it though. What about the World Series? They should be over by now. Who won? Anything new in the world of sports?

I`m sure that broadcast was great. The one we had a couple weeks ago was great. One of the Elders here is from Gilbert and he said the Gilbert Temple groundbreaking is in a couple of weeks. Is that true? What about the Phoenix temple?

To answer your question Valerie, I pray in Spanish, write in my journal in Spanish, and do my scripture study in Spanish. It defenitely helps with the language.

I found a cool Nativity today. It`s twenty five bucks so I`m debating if I should get it. I can find a cheaper one but probably not like that. I`ll get you a cool Nativity Mom. Don`t you worry.

Anyways that`s it for this week. I`m sending home some pictures. I hope you all have agood week.

Les quiero,
Elder Jones

Monday, November 8, 2010


Dear Family,

In case none of you could figure what I wrote for the subject, it says I HATE MY CAMERA. Last week I put all the pictures I had on my card onto a DVD. I just tried to look at them, but it won`t work. It shows the file name but it won`t show the pictures. To top it off, all of the pictures are no longer on my memory card. It looks like they got erased. I lost the pictures that I took on my year mark because that happened in the last week so they weren`t on the DVD. I HATE MY CAMERA. I don`t know if it`s the camera or the memory card or what. It`s starting to tick me off. I`ve decided that getting a new camera and a new memory card will probably be a good idea. It may just be the memory card but the camera isn`t good either. It goes through batteries like it`s its job. I found a good Kodak camera today. It looks like a good one. It`s got a rechargeable battery. It`s 12.2 mp. Kodak is s good reliable brand. It`s $200. Mom and Dad I will pay you back when I get home. I think this is the best idea. If I can`t get the DVD to work I`ve just lost all the pictures from the first year of my mission. I hope that DVD starts working. I guess that means I won`t be sending more pictures home. Sorry.

On a happier note, we had a good week last week.We found five new investigators. They`re all really legit. One of them is Ana Laura. She was really interested and she`s smart. She said, "If you two didn`t think this message was true, you wouldn`t be thousands of miles away from your homes sharing this message." I agree with that 100%. She accepted to get baptized if she knows that the gospel is true. They all accepted to get baptized if they recieve a testimony. One of them, Nelly, didn`t accept the baptismal invitation at first because she already got baptized in the Catholic church. We had to explain a few times that one has to get baptized by proper priesthood authority. She finally got it. That made last week awesome.

Tomorrow and Wednesday, I get to go to a training meeting. I mentioned this a couple of months ago. The Church has come out with eight new lessons to help missionaries teach better. They are not replacing the lessons in Preach My Gospel. They`re just helping us be better teachers. They are going to start teaching these lessons in the MTC in May. Before then, all the missionaries already in the mission field have to be taught the lessons. In our mission we have them every three months. I found out last night that it`s my turn to go. It`s from 8am to 6pm tomorrow and Wednesday. I`m looking forward to it.

Summer is gettig really close. Last week defenitely wasn`t cool. Yesterday we didn`t get a lot done. We left after lunch and were out for about an hour when Elder Longfellow started feeling sick. We went back to the house so he could rest and cool down. We left again at six and finished up the night. I`m just glad I`m not up north where it`s even hotter.

Friday was a weird day. It didn`t feel like I had already been on the mission for a year. We made brownies to celebrate. I also burned a shirt and recorded it. It was cool. As I was trying to fall asleep Friday night, I was thinking about that has happened in the last year. I speak another language fairly well. I know how to better share the gospel with others. I`ve learned how to better trust the Lord and many other things. With those thoughts came the thoughts of inadequacy. I still have so much more to learn. I should be able to teach the gospel better. I should be able to speak Spanish better. I should trust in the Lord more. That`s what the mission helps people do. It looks like it`s going to take two years to learn all these things. That`s why Elders serve for two years. I guess the sisters are smarter or something because it only takes them eighteen months. The point is, I`m looking forward to trhe next year. I can`t wait to learn more.

I guess that`s about it for this week. I hope you all have a good week. Oh congrats on the musical. Until next week...

Les quiero,
Elder Ethan Jones

P.S. Happy Birthday tomorrow Charles. I`m going to find a good card and send it to you.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Time Goes By Fast

Dear Family,

Well, I never thought the day would come, but it did. Where has the last year gone? I still feel like I have so much more to learn. It`s going to take two years to learn how to do everything and then I`m going to get sent home. I guess all I can do is keep learning and doing my duty and leave the rest up to the Lord.

Last week was good. We found some good, solid investigators. Our best investigator is a man named Andrès. He`s a stud(We missionaries call cool people studs, FYI). We`ve had one lesson with him. We have another lesson with him tomorrow night. He accepted the baptism invitation if he knows that the church is true. We read the last two paragraphs of the introduction to Book of Mormon with him. We told him that, if he really wants to know, he will receive an answer.

We had some good contacts last week. We met one man named Carlos. His wife recently died and he was sad about that, of course. We started tlaking about the Plan of Salvation. He doesn`t believe in anything. We chatted for a while and told him that he needs to pray to know that the Plan of Salvation is real. He kept rejecting the invitation and then he finally said that he didn`t know how to pray. We taught him how to pray. He changed after that. He was open, I think. We chatted a little while longer. I felt the Spirit while we were talking to him. I think he felt it to. I think he was a little afraid to let the Spirit in. I think he changed after we talked about prayer. That was a neat experience.

I`m going to send home some pictures. I`m pretty sure this is the first time I`ve sent pictures home. I sent home my group photo from the MTC but that`s it. Better late than never I always say. The computer I`m using is really slow so I`m only sending home a few. I`ll send home more next week.

I`m out of time again. I hope everyone has a good week. Good luck with the musical, young women stuff, school stuff, stake stuff. mounty stuff, and all the other stuff you all do. See ya later.

Les quiero,
Elder Jones

I forgot to talk about Halloween. It wasn`t anything amazing. There were kids out. A lot of them were dressed up the same. Their costumes weren`t very creative. Everyone was done trick-or-treating by eightish. Elder Longfellow and I were going to buy some cheap masks and go by some members` houses and ask for candy, but it never happened. We were too poor to buy masks. Maybe next year.

Anyways, Halloween in the U.S. is better, I think.

Now I`m finished.