Wednesday, March 13, 2013

March 13 - Off to Ecuador - The Adventure Begins!!

Yesterday was the big day!! Ben flew from Lima to Guayaquil, Ecuador.  He called us from the Lima airport with his leftover Peruvian coins.  We were able to talk to him for a few minutes. He was excited to head out to begin his missionary work.  He said it was hard to say goodbye to the other missionaries, especially his companion who got on another plane to head to a mission in Peru.  He was traveling with the one sister from his district.  She is also going to the Guayaquil South Mission.  Ben was proud that he made it through the CCM experience.  He was part of the first group of missionaries in a new program.  He also said he enjoyed proselyting while in the CCM.  We look forward to hopefully hearing from him next Monday on his P-day to find out who his companion is and where he is assigned to labor. Here are a few excerpts from the letters we have received from him while he was in the CCM:

"I play a lot of basketball with the Latinos, it is a lot harder, they do not know the definition of a foul.  It is hac-a-Shaq all the way up the court.  They also travel and double dribble every time, it 's hilarious. but gym time is a time I look forward to almost everyday."

"Yesterday, I had the opportunity to go proselyting for the first time.  It was amazing to see the circumstances that the people live in.  I am so glad to live in America.  I am so grateful for mom;s cooking, wow I would die for one of her meals right about now.  It was cool to finally be able to be an actual missionary.  It was pretty crazy.  They just dropped me and my companion for the day, Elder Bonilla in an area.  Then it was up to us.  I was able to place 2 Books of Mormon.  It was cool to knock doors. It was hard to know what was a house and what was an abandoned pile of cement.  I decided we should knock  on this one door.  He was actually an inactive member whose wife has been taking the missionary discussion before they moved to where they live now.  They said they had not seen the missionaries where they are living now."

"The Latin people are so kind and loving.  I don't know if I told you this already but Elder Casanova, who is now in the field, asked Elder Stanley and I to be the best men at his wedding.  The new group of Latins are awesome as well.  Last night they all gave me a piece of their money from their country and they all signed it.  It was awesome.  The new Latins are calling Elder Stanley and I Latinos."

"I went proselyting yesterday for the second time.  It was pretty crazy.  It was a pretty slow day.  nobody wanted to listen to us.  It seemed like nobody was home and when they were they just ignored us.  My companion and I  were able to teach 3 lessons.  One to a lady in the park whose sister was a member, she was a pretty good contact.  We also taught a lady who was outside he house, she was super interested but she would not give us her name or address because her husband would be mad that she was talking to us.  I bore my testimony to her in Spanish and taught a little about the Plan of Salvation in Spanish which was cool but then my companion testified to her about the gift of tongues because I was able  to speak Spanish to her.  It was really cool to have one of the Latins testify about me.  I already have stories about proselyting.  One little boy thought I was a monster because I was the tallest person he had ever seen and I was a gringo.  He walked up and punched me right in the stomach.  It was funny. He was a cute little guy."

 Here are some pictures, thanks to Elder Moore and the CCM staff!!

Some Elders in the CCM!!

One of the Branches in the CCM

Ben's CCM District

Another Branch in the CCM

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