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Elder Ritter - 11/13/2023

Hola a todos!

This week was definitely a little bit of a rollercoaster. Immediately after wedding out last week's email, I sent a message to our mission nurse asking what we should do about him and his sickness. He had actually gotten worse and we (me and the zone leaders) were starting to get a little worried about him. So she said, "take him to the hospital." So yeah, immediately after sending out last week's email, I was sitting in a hospital waiting room until 11 PM with my companion, the zone leaders, and a senior missionary couple waiting for the doctors to come and help my companion who was absolutely WRECKED. We finally got an appointment, a perscription, and took him home.

He started taking the probiotic, and it worked really well! Still wasn't 100% but he started recovering very well. In the meantime, we had exchanges for an entire week, so that I wasn't stuck inside the entire day while my companion recovered. It was really fun! We had a lot of really great lessons. Not too much progress on teaching people in general, but we're going into this next transfer ready to go. By the end of the week Elder Tomsen was good to go and ready to crush it. We're very optimistic now, and he's back to full health! 

Like I said, we weren't able to teach a lot of people this week. People just don't want to answer us, pick up our calls, answer our texts or anything. But I did have the opportunity to attend Sara's baptism, a super funny young lady with a really strong testimony. She got up at the end of her baptism to talk about her experience and she capped it off with, "I sure hope my mom gets baptized very soon," while giving a very pointed stare to her mom. All of the members laughed and all of the missionaries exchanged nervous/excited glances. Hopefully her mother does get baptized and they can go to the temple together! That would be a dream come true. 

We also did a chalkboard activity in the streets where we stopped dozens of people asking them to write down on our chalkboard, "Por qué estás agradecido?" (Why are you grateful?) The people's reactions were all very interesting ranging from "I'm really glad you're doing this, people need to be a little more grateful," to "I have nothing to be grateful for, I'm in a rush." It literally would take about 5 seconds to write down something they were grateful for, and yet so many people reacted negatively. But we tried to be positive and cheer people up as best as we could. It was interesting that the overwhelming majority of peopme that wrote things on our board were younger people. Teens, young adults, young couples, etc. It was nice to see that they had a lot to be grateful for. They wrote things such as "my boyfriend/girlfriend" "being alive" "music" "family" "my mom" "jamón (spanish ham)." Not one person seemed to leave without a smile. It was a huge success! We met tons of nice people, got a lot of numbers, and made some great friends. 

What are you grateful for? Let me know! I'm grateful for the opportunity to be a missionary, and for the Atonement of Jesus Christ that allows me to change. It gives me hope that I can be better than what I am right now, and that is a powerful thought. We read in Alma in the Book of Mormon, "worship God, in whatsoever place ye may be in, in spirit and in truth...that ye live in thanksgiving daily, for the many mercies and blessings which he doth bestow upon you."  Make a short list today of 5 things you're grateful for. You may find more things within those 5! God has given us SO much and sometimes we forget. We are always wanting more and more and more, always trying to one up ourselves, and one up others, but God never tries to one up. He's not comparing our possessions with another's, our talents with another's. Instead He's comparing us against how far we've come. Notice the ways he's helped you today! 

¡Cristo vive! ¡El Libro de Mormón es verdadero!

¡Os amo!

Elder Ritter 

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