Well That’s All Folks -July 26, 2016

Well. This is the end.

The zone is doing really well. We have 23 baptisms, and with the fechas reported right now we could get more than 30. We`ll see what happens.

Other than that. Just working. There should be a few baptisms here in the next week and in the next month.

Feels kind of strange. And yet normal. I don`t really feel sad, because something new is starting. Just unsettled.

It will be strange the first few days though.

Here is a photo of me and Elder R last Thursday, because we had divisions with the assistants. And that`s T, the guy we pay to move furniture to different houses. Looks like we`re at a party, huh?

Is there anything else that I´m forgetting to do? I´ll leave the destroyed stuff here.I have a few gifts for everyone too. I can´t even remember what all I have. I guess we´ll see when I unpack.

So I guess–

I`LL COME HOME THEN. LOVE YOU.

Elder Schafer

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Time Keeps on Slipping – July 19, 2016

We had a baptism on Sunday, which was cool. We have a few more people in our area that are progressing and could get baptized this month. What´s really great is how the zone is doing. I´m really impressed with Elder L. He should have 9 baptisms on Saturday. He´s also doing a good job animating his zone. There´s also a family in E, and maybe one of our investigators.

The week after, there are more, from the sisters, with a family as well. And a widow with her kids in N. Everyone is working really hard, and it´s cool to see how they´re finding and helping people.

We´re going to keep going and verifying with all of these investigators to help them get to baptism. Other than that, the time just keeps going.

Trying to stay focused. It´s been fun. Yeah, there are lots of good memories. Lots of nice photos, and some cool stuff to come at the end, and it´ll be all great. 

It´s like graduating. Just kind of antsy waiting for it.

Time Hurries On, and the Leaves that are Green Turn to Brown – July 11, 2016

It feels like I`m about to finish, but yet not. I`m just used to living in this dusty bloc house, where I can only walk around in sandals. And where we heard like 15 rounds fired just around the block from us last night at about 10:30. And it`s just strange that this is all so normal.

But at the same time. It`s going to be super awesome to finish.

This week we had ten baptisms as a zone, which was cool to see. 

I`m happy I get to finish as a zone leader and be able to do something a little different (even though I really get tired of nightly calls, and having to say something profound and helpful to each of the district leaders at ten when all I want to do is study some Spanish and hit the sack). But it really is a fun life.

Like today, I`m going on divisions to an area I`ve never been to. Just an overnight bag, and sleeping in another guy`s bed. But it really has become just an adventure.

In the end, I`m happy with it all. It`s all been worth it, and I`m grateful. Because I`m still just me, and I`ve mostly learned that I don`t know much about the world, but at the same time, I`ve learned a whole heck of a lot, and learned to do things I wouldn`t have ever done.

I you enjoy these next few weeks until I crash back into your house and I`m your son, but at the same time a strange, almost grownup guest who eats your food, uses your computer, and talks way too much about the `good old days.` Because now you`re used to living with four kids, and I`m used to living basically on my own. It`ll be kind of weird, and kind of fun.

But yeah. Two more internet times. And then the show`s over.

Elder Schafer

Getting to the End – July 5, 2016

Well. We went to Antigua. I took a bunch of photos, which are attaching themselves on this slow internet network like a slug slithering acrossed a glass window. We´ll see how many get attached before I have to send it and finish my internet time.

Honestly, it was fun, but at the same time, kind of boring. We had zone training today, and president came so we could give our last testimonies for the zone. 

I spend most of my time working, getting tired, waking up early, and studying spanish grammar so that I can take the test when I get back. I´m going to try and keep doing exercises of grammer everyday for those three weeks when I get back too, until I can schedule the test. 

That´s cool that the altitude won´t affect me after the mission. I´m really looking forward to going and getting out of all of the concrete jungle. In the desert or in the forest, just away from all the people and in a pretty place without all of the trash.

Maybe it´s just because of the zone training I just gave, but I feel absolutely drained now. I´m going on divisions today, with Elder S, who will also be going home next month. We´ll see how that goes.

But yes. Just here. Living it out. Looking forward to the next few weeks, and being able to get through them. Hoping that I´ll be able to get more sleep.

Love you!

Elder Schafer

The Projects – June 28, 2016

Well, to tell you a little about this week and La Sonora: The area is pretty big. There are three parts: Linda Vista, which is a big neighborhood, with some walled residencials. La Sonora, a slightly poorer neighborhood. And Proyectos. The projects. 

We live in Proyectos. It`s really poor and all the houses are tightly packed in lots of alleyways. It`s an interesting place. It`s pretty quiet in the day because everyone`s gotta work (there`s no welfare in this country). And in the night, it gets a little crazier, how I would imagine a lower socioeconomic neighborhood in LA or NY. Nothing really violent. Just teenagers and people around the soccer fields, hanging out, listening to music, and probably smoking illegal substances.
I`m looking forward to having some baptisms. Mosiah 13:9:  But I finish my message; and then it matters not whither I go, if it so be that I am saved. That`s my theme for this last month. 

But yeah. I don`t really know what more to say. I`m kind of excited to finish. The office was really the funnest part of my mission. But it is nice in lessons. When people really are listening and they appreciate what you are trying to do for them.

That`s why I loved Boca. My converts there were so nice, and thankful for us.. Like the familia S that got married. They always got super excited when I came. While I was in Chimaltenango, they made the elders call me on speakerphone to say goodbye. Or familia B, they were always very calm, but loved to shared the things that they`d been learning or what they`d been doing in their callings. The couples that I`ve gotten to help really have been my favorite people. Like E and J in Santa Barbara. They couldn`t get married, so J couldn`t get baptized while I was there, but they did afterwards when she turned 18.

But, there`s a lifetime of memories. It`s nice to have friends, and people that care about you. And sometimes it`s good to start over a little too. Like college. Basically from scratch.

Don’t Blink. You’ll Miss Chimaltenago too – June 22, 2016

I am in Linda Vista as a Zone Leader. I will tell you more about it next week, but here are some pictures from Chimal–

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The outdoor stuff is Colinas. The girls camp that the church owns near Chimal. It´s super pretty, and preserved, and totally different from the rest of Guatemala.

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We had one baptism. The nephew of a recent convert.

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And the crash with the traffic happened one night when I was on divisions, and the other missionary and I saw it all happen from the other side of where the photo was taken. The truck hit the close black car gainst the barrier, and bounced the other way off the road into a building. It was
cool. But kind of scary.

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Elder Schafer 

The Plot Thickens – June 14, 2016

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I write you today… on a crummy keyboard in an internet café. Not in the office. It´s a short story, but interesting.

Basically president decided that Elder S, who´s going to be the new asistant to replace Elder G1, needed to come in a week early. So I got sent to be with Elder S´s companion, Elder G2. We´re zone leaders of Chimaltenango. (Look it up, it´s like the Escuintla of the mountains).

It´s a small zone. But it´s cool. I´ll probably only be here a week, then I´ll go to my last area. But who knows. But I like it, and I´ll be following Elder G2 around. He´s really cool. We already get along well. Today in the morning we went to a gym that a member owns and lifted. I´m going to be super tired at the end of the day. But that´s how adventures go.

That capped probably the funnest week in the office ever. We had a lot of fun on the last pday, and just joking around. We went to the Avenida la Reforma on pday and just walked down it taking photos. Then we went to hardrock cafe for lunch. And we had a fire on the roof in the night.

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We should have at least one baptism here this Sunday, which is cool. This is a good zone. They have lots of possibilities for baptisms next week. This week we´re calling a lot to verify with the possibles. We have one fija and two possiblities in our area. I´m excited.

Love
Elder Schafer