Sunday, August 23, 2015

God and his army is stronger

Hey guys!!!!! How are we all doing? I hope everyone had a great week! This week here in Sabaneta was great! It has been raining everyday this week which was so great! Everyone was saying that we are in a drought and that we were going to run out of water in one month but it started raining hard so not anymore!!! so that's good! Its pretty crazy that one river is the sourc of water here! But God always loves and he has blessed this little town! 

But guys guess what? We found two more people this week and we invited them to be baptized. The first guy is a Peruvian so that's cool. His date is on the 19 of September!! So the weekend before I leave we are planning to have another baptism!! The lesson was with him last Thursday. I don't know if I've told you guys about him before but his name is Omar and he works for Kola Real, a soda company here but he has taken the lessons before in Peru when he was 17 but now he is 28 so now he is really interested but anyways the lesson was so spiritual!!!! It was so calm in his house, there was no noise what so ever but he had read the whole pamphlet! He said that he loved the first part of the pamphlet so I just kept going and he understood everything! The thing that was so great from the lesson was at the end when my comp and I finished teaching and both bore our testimonies, just from his face we could feel that the spirit was touching his heart and let him know that all the things we had said were true. We invited him to be baptized and he accepted right away! He was saying that it seems true because just by our dedication to this work helps him realize more that these things are true!
Yeah he is a cool guy! So happy to have him!:) he has gone to church twice!! 

Now we have another investigator that is new but he is another reference. He has come to church 4 times even before were teaching him but his name is Eleaser and his advantage is that his girlfriend is a member and they are planning on getting married. The girl doesn't was to force him. She is so cool she doesn't want him to be baptized for her so he definitely knows that it has to be his own testimony which is great! We have told him that they have to be his desires and he says that he really wants to know if this is the true church. The girl was telling us that she sees a change in him. He goes to church without her invitation. He goes by himself so we feel like he is preparing himself to be baptized so we will see if we can see two baptisms next month!!:) 

Leonidas is still preparing himself to be baptized. We want him to be really prepared for his baptism so we don't know if he will be baptized this Saturday or next Saturday but he says hi! He told me the next time I talk to my family to say hi for him! He is a really great guy! I told him he has to go to my wedding and my reception to play bachata haha but he is such a great guy he is definitely going be a great member of the church. Just pray for all of these guys please. Satan is trying to tear them down but God and his army is stronger as you guys can see the work is so great here in Sabaneta! I can't complain!!!  I wanted to let guys know that I am getting home on the 25th of September, it's a Friday and they still havent got the flight plan yet but they think I will get home around 8:15 not 100 percent sure but that's the approximate time!! Wow that's so weird to talk about.... hahaa but love you guys so much!!! Have a good week! This week lets try to give a reference to the missionaries! It will help a lot! 

Elder HOLYCROSS haha everyone calls me that! 

Elder Christianson

Hermana Dulce and her sister

Hermana Zagarra is leaving us

Nelson my workout buddy

A successful missionary is one who is dedicated

​¿Como estan mi gente?​ Que loco me falta solo 7 semanas ¿verdad? Pero... I'll stop talking in Spanish because no one can understand me only mom! Yeah buddy buddy mom we are just gonna talk in Spanish. English doesn't exist for us hahaha but anyways this week was so cool! Guess what we found a less active this week and here is a crazy experience for you guys! Okay ready...?

So when I got to Sabaneta I met a less active member his name is Napoleon. the president of the branch introduced us to him. He has so much time not going to church and also guess what he is an ex missionary... so sad... but okay I met him one random day out in the street and we have always wanted to find him. My companion Elder Pinales didn't want to waste time trying to help him so we never went to his house when I was with him but when Elder Lopez arrived I wanted to find him because he is a cool dude. He is super smart and I don't know why but I felt something when I met him. What I mean is I felt the holy spirit telling me that I needed to go see him. Anyways when I went with Elder Lopez to his house no one ever answered. I remember that sometimes when we went over there right before we got to his house we would see him and he would walk inside and hide from us or he would just never answer the door when the door was wide open. After like our 10th visit my comp said to me yeah we should stop coming we are wasting our time! So I agreed.

Now, last week on Thursday we saw him in the streets which was weird because he never leaves his home. He lives by himself and he doesn't work and he has no friends so he likes staying in the house....anyways like I was saying we saw him in the street but we actually bumped into him... like it was perfect!! We got his number and he was saying yeah go to my house on Saturday at three and we were like yeah buddy!! When the day came at three we tried calling him and he wouldn't answer....and when we got to his house he wasn't there. My comp was so annoyed I was a little also but get this!!!!! On Sunday, the next day I get the the impression to say to my comp, "hey lets go visit napoleon again tomorrow." My comp was saying why? like thinking I was crazy but we did and when we got there the next day he was there!!!!! He let us in and he said hey guys sorry I had to do something the day we planned the appointment we were like no its okay! We sat down and guess what? We talked in English. He is fluent in English and he is super cool. He just has a lot of problems! We talked for 2 hours about his life and everything but when we got out we realized that we were being that successful missionary according to preach my gospel!!! It says that a missionary that is successful is one that is dedicated and we are definitely that!! We kept trying and trying until we even doubted but I learned so much by that little moment from the beginning until now to always pay attention to the spirit and always be persistent. I learned that from Elder Holland!!! Wow I love the mission!! I love you all so much hope you like my week!

Also Leaonidas is not ready to get baptized. We think that he needs to wait another week because we don't want to baptize him until he is sure that he will endure to the end and until his testimony is strong! 

Love you all!! 
Elder Santacruz 

Shout out to My Boy Elder Jake Peterson for being a boss and finishing your mission! You are a great example to me man! Keep going dude!! Love you!

God is Love

​Hey guys!!! Wow this week already finished? Flip... haha 

Well this week was a little loco. We had to go to Santo Domingo because we had to renew our Visa. They are doing it because they are sending all the Haitians back to their country because most the Haitians don't have papers so that's kinda sad! We did that Monday and yesterday it took us 5 hours to get back to our area can you believe it!? Wow Santo Domingo is far. Oh by the way Santo Domingo is the Capital!

This week we were able to find 5 new investigators. Can you guys believe it, they were all references!!! Hey we might be seeing some more success soon! Woot Woot! One of the investigators is a Peruvian and he is so smart. He works for Kola Real, its a soda company. He is an engineer but he is so interested in the plan of salvation. He has studied about everything. He looked into Buddhism, Jehovah witness, Atheism but he is understanding everything we are teaching him! Wow he asks a million questions so that's good! He did go to church last week, not here in Sabaneta in a another city. He enjoyed it, he said he will come to the one here so were excited to have him!

Leaonidas went to church again!!!!!!!!! That's four weeks straight going and he is still focused on it!  He is making sacrifices to be a member of the church of Christ!! It's so great! He said to today that he feels apart of something and that he is starting to feel happy for once in his life!! Wow!!!! That's so cool! The Lord is definitely helping him!! 
He might not get baptized this Saturday because we want him to really have a strong testimony but he will get there right? Yeah buddy! 

President of the branch is happy! Today we saw him and he said he is so happy about the work that we are doing, he is seeing a lot of progress and its true the work here is changing! People are more motivated to help us. 

I am so excited for this week. We are going to meet a new family. They are a reference but they are really cool. They want to know more about the church so we will see how it goes. Please pray for us!! Prayers do work!!!! I love you all Mucho!! This work is great!!! God is love!! Christ lives! This is his true CHURCH!

Elder Santacruz

Super funny man

Dominican working in sandels

Temple selfie

One doesn't work without the other...

Well.... another great week here in Sabaneta! We are seeing miracles all over the place! I gotta talk about the VECINO, the neighbor first because he is so cool! The neighbor is progressing more and more, we put his date for the 1st of August! We set if for that day because his girlfriend is coming down from the states for these next two weeks and so we will do it if he is willing to make sacrifices. We talked about the law of Chastity and we really hope that he won't do anything dumb with her. He needs all the help he can get so please pray for him that he wont fall into temptation. He sounds so pumped to be baptized and he has that desire to change. We hope the best for him but what has been really cool is that some nights we have been reading the book of mormon right before he goes to bed and he is starting to get used to everything. Also this last Sunday he went to church on his own and he got there on time at 9:00 exactly. We will see what happens this week! 

We are teaching a family and we have been teaching for about a month now. They haven't had the time to go to church because they always go out of town but this Sunday the father and the daughter went to church. It's great to see the father finally wanting to learn more. They have so many friends in the church because they were our reference from the branch president! What we haven't been doing is we haven't been visiting them that much weekly so that is what we need to change! 

This last Saturday, we had a lesson with a less active member. She is a mother of three kids. I took a picture with two of the kids. The little girl does poses haha. The mom lost her husband two years ago and around that time, she fell away from the church. We have been helping her with her family home evenings and also we have been helping her try to let go of what happened to her husband. She needs to move on with her life. She is getting so much better, the other day we got to her house and she tells us that she had read three chapters of the book of mormon on her own. Usually we have to try to push her to read the book of mormon but this time she did it on her own which was great! She is motivating herself! The other day we shared a great message with her which the scripture is in Corinthians 12: 20-22 and it talks about how even the weak ones are necessary which I think it is so cool how it talks about each part of the body being necessary and that one part doesn't work without the other! 

So many great things are happening and it is so cool to see more and more people interested in knowing about the gospel! The church is true I love this gospel, Christ lives always, and this work is only gonna get bigger! 
Love all of you guys have a good week!
E. Santacruz

Said goodbye to my great friend Elisaura. See you again soon. Congratulations on your marriage.

Leaonidas and his madre

Sabaneta til the End

​Hello everyone! Guess what!?! I am gonna stay here in Sabaneta for sure. I am gonna finish my mission here! Yes! I know that because I have to kill my companion... that means he is gonna finish his mission in 6 weeks and then I am gonna leave 4 weeks after that. Wow I only have 10 more weeks isn't that crazy​. Yeah I am excited to know that I am gonna finish here! This week was so great! It first started with Leaonidas our Investigator!

He went to church again that's so cool. We are starting to notice that he really has the desire to be baptized but he needs a lot of prayers! He is such a great guy! We both love him so much! One thing we need to work on is him going to church on time but also he needs to go to church on his own just so he doesn't get used to us taking him every week! Other than that he always talks about his date! He is like so I am still getting baptized on the 25th right? so that helps us know that he is still excited! 

Also on Sunday we sang the song glorious by David Archileta in the movie meet the mormons. It was a duet with my comp and I and Hermana Frost playing the piano and wow it was so cool. First time singing in church and it was so special everyone felt the spirit I wanted to do it because I have never sang in church and I knew that mom would have wanted me to do it! After we sang, everyone was like wow you guys need to sing every week! haha I was like umm... nah but we sang it in Spanish! It was cool! 

Yesterday when my comp and I found out we were gonna stay together we were like yeah buddy we are gonna kill it in such little time. So much work to do! Our goals are to have a member leave with us everyday! That a goal that we really want to work on. I am so excited to be here and wow I am so pumped to have time still in the mission because pretty soon I will be with you guys but love you all this week will be even better promise you that! Have a good week!