Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Death and Dying

Hello family. I know that´s a pretty gloomy title but it´s what I´ve been thinking about a lot this week. Some weeks I don´t have very much to write about and other I have too much. This week has been one of those weeks that had a little bit of everything in it.

On Friday in the morning we went up to Mendoza for a little meeting with the Mission President, President Avila. He was there with his wife and three of his kids, the youngest of which is only like 10 or 12 or something. He also has a daughter who is married and a son who is on his mission in Washington. The family introduced themselves and then he shared a spiritual thought/lesson with us and that was about it. He seems really nice and it´ll be interesting to see if he makes any changes in the mission, so far there hasn´t been any.

Anyways, the weird part of this story is on the way back we drove by a motorcycle accident and saw a dead man on the street. They didn´t do anything to cover him up or anything. It was a really strange feeling. But the story gets weirder. When we were at a members house later that night they told us someone in the barrio (ward) had died and after talking about it for a bit we realized it was the same guy we had seen earlier that day. And what´s even weirder is that when we were at the Bishops house on Thursday night we had talked about this particular family because they were inactive and we were making plans to pass by his house. We went to his viewing or something on Saturday with the Bishop and it was definitely a situation in which I had no idea what to do. We met the wife and their oldest kid who is only 13. They have more kids, the youngest of which is 4.

Even though we didn´t know him we were still weirdly intertwined with the situation and it made us think a lot about death and life and how it´s so unexpected and just a million other things. We talked about a lot of different things that day because it was a situation and experience that made us feel a lot of emotions that we don´t really know how to handle. In the church it helps that we have The Plan of Salvation, and that we know that we´re going to see those people again someday. But that knowledge only kinda dulls the pain. It´s ironic how the people who suffer the most are the ones that stay behind. I can´t really think of many other situations that have that same effect. Maybe it´s just the fact that it´s so unexpected sometimes that we fear it. But a lot of times in the scriptures they talk about it as a rest from their labors and their going to be with God, and I guess that´s just the part we need to focus on the most. I don´t really know, it was just a really strange weekend for that reason.

On a different note, I guess I should tell you all that I am now in San Martin, which is a city about an hour and half away from Mendoza where I was before. I am now companions with Elder Guillen, who is from El Salvador, so I´m taking the opportunity to improve my spanish as much as possible. He´s really nice and easy to get along with but struggles a bit on obedience sometimes so it´s going to be an interesting transfer or two. But we´ve already had more success in half a week here than I had in a week or even two weeks in my old area. There´s quite a few more neighborhoods here so the people are usually more receptive and will listen. A couple interesting things about the area are that we live like 30 minutes away from where we actually work haha. So we have to take a bus in the morning to work, and then take a bus back if we don´t have lunch with a member (which we haven´t yet...) to cook in the pension and then another round trip bus ride to go to our area and work in the afternoon. So we spend a ton of money of busses.

Welp, much love

Elder Lounsbury

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