Monday, August 26, 2013

Elder Kade Larsen wrote today and mentioned the uprising that is going on in Colombia.  I heard about it briefly from the Colombia Missionary Mom site but hadn't heard that things had gotten out of control in some areas.  I am so glad that Kade isn't in Tunja right now although there are still many missionaries and members there. It sounds like the missionaries are taking some precautions and trying to have some food on hand. The Colombian Missionary Moms are holding a special fast for our missionaries and for this situation in Colombia to be resolved quickly this Saturday and Sunday if anyone would like to join us.  I looked up a little bit about the strike on the internet and am sharing this tiny bit.  Feel free to it up yourselves.
"A nationwide strike in Colombia—which started as a rural peasant uprising and spread to miners, teachers, medical professionals, truckers, and students—reached its 7th day Sunday as at least 200,000 people blocked roads and launched protests against a U.S.-Colombia Free Trade Agreement and devastating policies of poverty and privatization pushed by US-backed right-wing President Juan Manuel Santos."
Kade wrote, "Well this week in Colombia has actually been pretty crazy as well. You will have to look it all up online or something. I am surprised you haven't heard anything about it. Elder Grover's mom knew about it, ha. There have been a lot of protests here. I don't know if it's in the country or kind of just our mission. Probably most of the country. The worst part of it all is Tunja (where I was at a few months ago). The protests are basically about everything. There are also quite a few going on here in Bucaramanga but not close to us. The protesters are blocking off the highways between the cities so that people can't leave or enter the cities. In Tunja, (I called them), they can't leave their house and haven't been able to since Friday. How horrible right?
The assistants called us all and have told all the missionaries we have to go out and buy rice, water, pastas, things that would last for at least a week if we weren't able to leave the house. My companion and I bought some rice the other day but in all honesty I have NO money. I didn't want to take more out without saying first so I am now asking you to put some money in there for this emergency. We need it to be able to buy some things and also to have some money if we have to leave all of the sudden. In Bogota it is a bit crazier too. YOU DONT NEED TO WORRY, NOTHING HORRIBLE IS HAPPENING HERE WHERE I AM AT.  I promise. Its just kind of precautionary type things. 
Things have been going really well here.  Of course, there have been some rough days and all. But we are getting better and better every day we are here. I hope that all of you are doing great back home and I hope that all is well. Thanks for the emails. It was great to hear from you guys after a long week."
Elder Larsen

Monday, August 5, 2013

Kade eating hormigas, big butt ants.

Dear family and friends, (this letter has been edited)
Well this week has gone pretty well for us here in Diamante. First off, I am super stoked that Brady was able to get put back in the field without much delay. Was he home for a week or what? (His cousin was sent home with a medical issue that was resolved)  About Dakota, that is super awesome and Elder Grover and I are pretty shocked she was able to do that. Who gets to say they were able to do that? lol. (Dakota was able to give President Thomas S. Monson a hug.)
This week was a good week but a little bit rougher than before. We still have our families but they still don't have baptismal dates. Neither was able to attend but we had 2 other investigators come to church so that was good. It stunk that the two families couldn't come on Sunday. They need to attend and if they do I feel that they will progress so fast. We are going to have a lesson with an investigator tomorrow and we are going to invite him to be baptized. We had decided the same thing as you, to give him the opportunity. He is an awesome guy, awesome investigator.
Today for p-day we went to the Center to buy some things with other Elders. We were in a group of 8 and shortly after arriving we felt like we shouldn't have come with that big of a group. We caught a bunch of peoples attention which isn't always a good thing. There were 3 or 4 references we got out of it though. It was a weird 20 minutes there. 
We hope to have a week with A LOT of member lessons. That is one thing that we have struggled a little with lately so we hope to boost that up a bit. Lessons with members are a whole other world when it comes to having an effective lesson. We are searching for some really good members that can help us with these two families so they feel welcome when they come to the church. We were able to have a good lesson with the a family but the problem was the son wasn't there. We hope to have one early this week as well to get a date for them. We are working hard here. We are going to do service project hopefully this week.  We took pictures to see what we need to bring when we come to do the servfice project. We have 3 or 4 people in the ward that want to come and help us with it so it will be cool. 
I am still the District Leader here in the area. The Zone Leaders are still in my district and another area called Bucarica is in my district. There are two sister missionaries that just got here. So that will be different now that they are in my district. They are the only two hermanas here in Bucaramanga. Crazy right? I still haven't met them face to face. This Wednesday I will be able to.
One of these weeks coming up I have to buy one of those backpacks that are to the side because the whole mission is switching to that style of backpack and we have to do it before September. That's ok though, I had thought about buying one quite a few times but now just need to find one that will last awhile. Well It was cool to hear about everything that has gone on this week. Hope everything is going well for you guys back home and in the new job. It will be a cool job for you I think.  Love ya all!
Your elder,
Elder Kade Larsen