Monday, July 26, 2010

A picture's worth a million words...

I'm sure he's trying to say, "I love you MOM"!

Looks like some pretty good chocolate 'G-Love'!

Elder Rice is not happy?! "Ojo" which in Castellano means..."watch out"!

So, after a very long wait for Gavin's email today, this is what we got...(Good thing he's so cute)!

Hey Mom,
I'm safe...don't worry! We had a busy day/afternoon. We just jumped in a cyber to tell you not to worry and we'll write when we have time later this week, maybe Friday after planning. We had a way good week! I baptized Kevin. He's coming with us tomorrow to our district meeting. I love the kid! This Sunday we had 13 investigators to church! It was re piola!!!!!!
xoxoxoxo chaoooo
Your baby boy!

Not sure why he's sitting in a hospital...just happy it's not for him~

Yeso? Yes mam? Si o No?!

You're rockin' the hoody E. GP Rice

Your mother called...She said Portate bien and come home!...Soon!!!!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Rainy days and Sundays!

Amigos para siempre!
A little cold and wet!
Will the real Justin Bieber please stand up!

Hey Family,
So, we just got back from playing soccer and a bunch of missionaries got robbed. They took a bunch of wallets and stuff from us. Luckily, nothing of mine was taken. I'm sick that that happens so much. Some missionaries lost around 200 pesos. Luckily everyone had their cameras with them. Anyways, soccer was fun, even though I'm having lower back pain again.

Next week we are going to be baptizing Kevin which I am so excited about. He's such a stud! It's been raining so much here that the streets are just full of water. We come home soaked riding the bikes. We had only one investigator in Church, which was Kevin, when we thought we'd have about 13. We had a lot of people committed, but what are you gonna do?! When it rains, everyone just stays in. Makes it tough for the work because they think that if they go outside they're going to melt or something!

We've had some neat experiences with Kevin. He was super down on himself. Poor kid, just dwells on his past and can't look forward to the future. He just wants to fix so many things which he's already repented for and is ready to get baptized. It's just hard for him now knowing the Gospel. We had a really good lesson with him and after, I gave him a blessing of comfort. He said it really helped him. He's been super awesome this week. He had a long wait for his baptism because he wanted to be ready for it. We knew Satan was going to work on him, which he did, but he's been overcoming everything. He's going to be one of my favorite baptisms. I love his conversion story and being here to see it all. There's nothing better than seeing someone accept the Gospel right in front of your eyes and the changes it makes. It's like a change of attitude towards everything. He wants others to feel as he does. He was wondering how to do it. It's awesome to see how when we feel the fruits of repentance how we want others to feel as good as we do. We read in Alma 29:1-3 I think, or maybe 28, where he says he wants to shout out through a trumpet and shake the earth with his voice and cry repentance, but then he just realizes that he's just a man and someone who sins in his desires. The whole chapter is good. I had to give a talk on Sunday. I mentioned how in the Michael Jackson song, "Man in the Mirror" it says if you want to make the world a better place, take a look at yourself and make the change. We were doing contacts the day before and me and E. Johnson heard that song and we were like..."yeah, that's true...I'm going to use that in my talk."

So, things are going well. We have transfers in two weeks. It's so weird to see how fast the time is going. I'm excited but at the same time, not so much. I feel like I have a lot more to do before I go home.

Sounds like Jill is into eating's actually way good though. (Oh my Gavin...coming from the pickiest eater in the world!!!) I thought it was weird too when I first got here but it's like the best sandwich meat there is! Here at least! I'm sorry to hear about Ashley's friends accident and the other sad things happening right now. You really never know, do you?! It's important to be prepared though so you're ready for that time whenever it comes. Always! Feast on the scriptures and pray and go to Church and share your testimony with others.
I love you all,

Monday, July 12, 2010

Spain! World Cup Champs?!

Wow, I had a lot to read so I won't be writing too much today, but wow, a lot of stuff has happened it appears in one week. That's crazy! I like being informed about life outside the mission. It's weird that there even is a life outside of the mission and that everyone just keeps on keepin' on without us! j/k (Doesn't mean we don't miss you being here though Gav...)
This week was great. We were able to find Kevin's dad who came here from Peru last week. On Sunday he was shaking so badly and wanted to bare his testimony so I said, "I'll go up with you", so we both bore our testimonies. We shared ours right after Orlando shared his. Everyone in the ward had witnessed the health miracle that Orlando has had with his back so it was pretty cool. So, Kevin's dad happened to come over to his brother-in-law's house at the perfect moment. They shared their experiences with him of the gospel and really grabbed his attention. Kevin wants a better relationship with his and was afraid for us to talk to him, but instead of us asking him questions, he asked us, "what's the difference between you guys and all the rest of the church's?" I was like, well, we have the j/k, but we taught the restoration and were able to watch the video of Joseph Smith. I was thinking how excited I will be to go watch the Joseph Smith movie in Salt Lake when I get back. We should go as a family home evening. I'd like that. Anyways, his dad really liked what we talked about and found it to be really interesting. Everyone always gets super surprised when they hear our message. They hesitate until the spirit kicks them in the face, then they're like..."wow...these Yankees have something there." But anyways, we had a really great week. We had 5 in Sacrament meeting. Ibiz's husband Juan came!!! He came at the end, but I mean...he came! We introduced him to the bishop and it was awesome. I really do love that guy. He's the most sincere person. You should hear his prayers. You can tell he's just opening up his heart to God and letting out what he feels. We have some amazing investigators. If it wasn't for marriage problems we'd be dunkin' a couple of families. I'm hoping to get Ibiz and Juan married as well as German and Monica, like way quick like so I can be here for their baptism. It takes forever though because you have to take a turn and there is usually a 3 month wait. They make it so difficult that people just decide not to do it.

So, today we played soccer in an indoor field. It was a lot of fun. I'm really looking forward to playing indoor when I get back. It's been pretty cold here. I like it though. We have zone conference this week so I will probably be able to meet the new mission president. Our zone is in first place doing the best out of all the zones. That's kind of cool I guess. I can't wait for Kevin to get baptized! It's gonna be so rad. He's going to be a missionary...I know it! He's so smart and as we taught his dad, he helped out more members usually do. It's going to be awesome to take him with us to teach. The Church is so true! And so perfect!!! It's crazy how true it is.

I just looked on my blog and you put Elder Garcia instead of Elder Velasquez on a pic He has a super long hair that grows out of his forehead. He's going to give it to me so I'll remember him when I leave. Haha! I love that kid! I love you guys and miss you all.
Love Elder Rice

Thursday, July 8, 2010

Argentina Buenos Aires South!

The entire BAS mission group saying adios to President and Hermana Asay!
Crazy Elder's!

Gavin loves Peruvian food!
Photo shoot?
The wonderful Fitch's and Elder Schupple soon to be RM's!

Elder Velasquez. He will giving Gavin his really long hair that grows out of his forehead for Gavin to remember him when they part!


Hey Family,
That makes me way sad about the Teerlink kid. I hate when things unexpectedly happen like that. That's too bad. (Tyler Teerlink was hit on the head by a big rock while climbing with the scouts. He has a bad skull fracture and had surgery but is expected to get the use of his hand back soon.) I hope things will work out for him and his family and that he can recover. Chris White is such a stud. I'm sure his blessing made all the different. The Priesthood is real.

Cam, congrats on doing well on the MCAT! Who would have thought you'd do well on it? JK! We all did! You're a stud. Mom, I'm glad you had a great time in St. George with your friends. I hope Marvenna wasn't invited...uh oh...Cam LOVES Marvenna! (haha...I'll never tell Gav)! Sounds like Jon and Ash are doing well as are Whitney and Adam. Adam's in the Bishopric now! Wow, that's an intense calling. I'm sure he's ready to fulfill it. Dad so you're sportin' the German team! Freak, you'd be killed here! I was on divisions with Elder Garcia when the game was going down. He's from Peru but after the game, everyone was so mad that Germany beat Argentina they thought we were from Germany. Everyone kept asking us. We had to go switch back on our bikes in the Villa where our areas meet, we got there a little early, or in other words on time and were waiting for the other elders. So, after the first group of pibes asked me if I was German, I put my helmet back on and covered my 'blonde' hair. It was crazy to see the difference in Argentina when they lost compared to when they won. Soccer is their life!

German and Monica weren't able to come to church this week because of an incident we later found out about just after the game. Everyone gets so drunk and crazy. German was sitting in his doorway and his drunk neighbor started bothering him. He was saying stuff about his wife and ended up grabbing his shirt and ripping it up. German was ready for work, about to drop his kid off at his moms when this guy just starts to fight him. The guy bit German's calf, like Mike Tyson style. In defense, German had to kick him in the face and broke his nose. Anyways, long story, but I'm making it short. The guy came back later with a knife so German had to beat him up. All this happened right in front of his 6 year old little kid. It makes me so mad. German's had a crazy life, it was hard for him to hold back he was so offended. I saw his leg yesterday and it was nasty where the fool bit him. This all happened after the game, so on Sunday he couldn't come to Church and couldn't even go to work. It's so crazy how this stuff is just normal to all these people. It makes me even more grateful for where I live. We really are so blessed...more than we even realize.

This week we had some crazy spiritual lessons with Kevin who is the 18 year old nephew of German. I'm sending you a pic so you know who he is. I love the kid. He and Orlando bore their testimonies at church on Sunday. Orlando was blessed with a miracle with his back problems. He walks so good now and doesn't have the hernia in his spine. Everyone's just so weirded out because he was soooo miserable in so much pain. He's convinced that Heavenly Father blessed him as he started to go to Church and got to know us and the members. He's now going to move back to Peru on Tuesday with his family and his wife. We are sad because we wanted to baptize him, but we are really happy for him. We will pass his info onto the missionaries there so they can continue teaching him and the rest of his family.

We took out a baptismal date with Kevin for the 24th as well as an older couple, Ibiz and Juan. I'm not positive they'll make it but I know Kevin will. He's such a stud. He understands his purpose in life now. I can't wait to take him out and work with him after he is baptized. We are really blessed. I feel like we are really bringing the Spirit into our lessons now. It's crazy how the Spirit really does the teaching. It's taken me like my whole mission to grasp that fact and to learn how to use it. We have so many good things going for us in this area. So many great investigators.

Oh, before I forget, will you guys pray for German and Monica and their family? I would hate for something to happen to them. The guy lives like 3 doors down in a Peruvian Villa next to the railroad tracks in a way dark place, in a house made of material. It wouldn't be hard for someone to get in. Just keep them in your prayers for us. (Will do Gav)! Thank you!

Mom, if you send me a package, I said IF, don't feel obligated, but Reece's...a ton of them. Reece's Pieces would be rad. Peanut Butter M&M's, some skittles, (not the red pack), and yeah, whatever, don't feel obligated. Oh, and thanks for the letter you sent me. That was unexpected and I liked it. Thank you mom.

Today for P day we're going to play soccer again. Freak...I LOVE soccer. I think I've gotten a lot better than I used to be. I want to play in an indoor league when I get back.

PS...I make banana bread now. My comp showed me how and we have like a microwave slash oven thing. It's rad for making pan (bread) and I make a mean banana bread. I'm obsessed, I make it so much. We're making it and taking it to a noche de hogar (Family Night) with the Family Cardenas (Jesus's family). It's going to be a well needed one. I love that family so much.

I love you all. The Church is true! Listen to your leaders. Read your scriptures! Say your prayers...on your knees! Wow, we knelt down after a really good lesson with Kevin in his tiny tiny little room he has. We were all touching knees basically. But, he said the prayer and it was so sincere and so amazing. We were with the first counselor and he was so impressed. Even Kevin felt the Spirit overwhelmingly. Anyways, have a great week!
Love Elder Rice the Third!


Saturday, July 3, 2010

Happy 4th of July weekend!

We are so blessed for our freedom in America!
I am blessed to have this little boy!
Happy 4th of July!!

Friday, July 2, 2010

Week 1 of this transfer....

Wow! I'm dead tired! We played futbol for 4 hours today. I feel aged. By the 3rd hour I was just dead and lazy. I wanted to keep going but my body just wouldn't let me. I don't like that! Then we had to walk over to the cyber because my comps bike is getting fixed again. The bikes break so much. Poor kid has had to pay 200 pesos of his own to fix the bikes after being reimbursed for half. Pero q va a hacer (what are you going to do?)
This last week was awesome! Especially Sunday. We had 8 investigators in Sacrament meeting. I LOVED it! It was like crazy trying to fellowship and support each one of them. Orlando would get baptized as this is his 5th week in coming to church in a row, but he's not married. His wife is coming to be with him though when he has his back operated on so we are trying to get them married and baptized together. That would be so cool! They've been together for 10 years and have 2 kids. This week we had an awesome lady with our investigator Ibiz. We also found her husband with our mission leader. We had a really spiritual lesson. She's awesome. The husband is even better, but he doesn't feel the need to go to church which blows because he drops her off every Sunday. She fell though and broke her hand so she only comes now for Sacrament meeting. I wish he would just pop in and see what's up. We visited an investigators brother in the hospital and found him and his wife. He was shot twice. He has nails in his leg because the bullet fractured the bone. He had a thing in it kind of like Terry's leg when he that bad broken leg. His wife is awesome. Well, woman friend. I'm not sure if they're married. But, we were able to give him a blessing with his cousin who is a member. Well, recent convert. He's promised to change his life after this is all over and go to church and live a better life. It sucks when something like that has to happen to someone to make them put their priorities in order. He is a great guy though. He was actually sticking up for a friend and was shot by another friend. Some friend...Today was his surgery. We're going to visit him tomorrow night and see how he is doing. Oh guess what? Jesus' got the Aaronic Priesthood yesterday! His wife Angelica got a calling after years of not being able to have one! It was so awesome! They're so great. We have a family night with them tonight or whatever they're called.

Oh, dad...sorry I never told you Happy Father's Day. I'm a terrible son! Happy Father's Day! I felt so retarded the next day. I forgot the week before than forgot the Monday after. My bad. Oh and are you watching the World Cup??? It's not hard to tell the outcomes of the games. The people go crazy after! So, it comes down to dad's German's to see if Argentina moves on.

Well, I wanted to send pics but this computer doesn't allow me too. We're going to do divisions right now with some ward fellers. I'm so dead tired I want to be in my bed right now! P.S. that story with Chris...haha, I love that kid! He's so righteous! What a stud! Oh man, tell him to hit me up with a job at that joint of his. I've always been known to make a mean smoothie...well, snow cone, but I'm sure it's about the same.

Have a great week! Keep reading scriptures and praying. Don't miss a day. Keep up the habit. The habit is the most important part. It's like working out...if you miss a day, you usually end up fading...?entendes? (understand?)

Gavin Raiz
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