Monday, October 26, 2009

Rain Delay.

Dear Family and Friends, Hey, what do you know the weather in Argentina is warming up. This past week we had a baptism planned for one of our investigators named Susana but unfortunately we had to postpone the baptism for this Saturday. There is actually quite an interesting story to why we had to postpone the baptism I will try and fill you in. Susana had a baptism interview Thursday with our district leader and then we had to plan another for Friday with one of President Benton´s counselors. The interview was planned for Friday night at the church. Friday morning was one of the hottest days since I have been here in Argentina. However, the temperature can change rather quickly here in Argentina. Well,it began to rain later in the afternoon. Our plan was to go to Susanas´house, which is close to where we live, call a “remise”- which is basically a taxi and go to the interview together with Susana. It was raining pretty good when we were on our way to Susanas´ house and it did not stop raining. The interview was set for eigth o´clock. We arrived at our apartment to call Susana to see if she was ready to go but she was not home yet. After a little while she arrived and we called for a remise. Unfortunately there were no remises available, it was about a forty five minute wait. We were not able to think of any way to get to the church, it was stilling raining pretty good and there was no remises available. We decided to call the counselor to see if he could come to Susanas´ house for her interview, unfortunately he does not have a cell phone, the number that we have was his house phone. We thought we could try and have the interview Saturday morning but Susana already had plans and was not going to get back to her house till around five o'clock. We could have tried and planned the interview right around five or six o´clock but that would have been pretty close and a lot for Susana. Therefore, we decided to plan the baptism for the following Saturday. Susana handled the situation very well. Elder Grant and I were able to finish the week strong. We were behind with some of the goals we planned for the week because Thursday we had our zone conference but we were able bounce back and finish strong. Zone conference was really good. Our zone, “Oeste”, and another zone from the mission, “Castelar” met in Ramos Mejia for zone conference. As Elder Grant and I arrived to the stake center/mission offices in Ramos most of the elders were already there. There was a couple of elders standing together and started yelling my name, Elder Brooks. I went over to see what they had to say, two of them were the zone leaders from the zone Castelar. One of the zone leaders is Elder Gneighting from Las Vegas, Red Rock Stake. Elder Gneighting and his companion Elder Grange called me over to ask me about some of my high school baseball records! I did not know they knew hah! Well that is my update for this week. Thanks for your love and support, I looking forward to hearing from you soon. Con amor, Elder Brooks.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Taxi Man Beware !!!!!!

Dear Family and Friends, It was good to hear from everyone and sounds like everyone is doing great. Well Elder Grant and I started off the transfer very well this past week. After the transfer meeting we went to Rafael Castillo to pick up all my bags and then we left for Billinghurst. Before we even got to our area we had taught our first lesson, we ended up teaching the driver who drove us to Billinghurst the first lesson! We took down his name and information and will pass it off to the Elders in his area. So as I mentioned Billinghurst is a new area, just opened last transfer. Our apartment as well is pretty new, and I must admit pretty nice, we live in an apartment attached to a house of one of the members in our branch, the Valle family, its kind of set up like the room attached to dads house. The Valle family is amazing, they help us out a lot, always making sure we are well taken care of. They also have a son serving a mission, the Argentina Salta mission. Elder Grant and I are basically bringing Las Vegas to Billinghurst this transfer hah! We are excited to work hard this transfer, we would like to work 24/7 like Vegas but according to the mission rules we are not allowed. Elder Grant and Elder MacKay, the Elder who finished his mission last transfer have been teaching a lady named Susana and we are continuing to teach her. Susana has a good understanding of the gospel, however she is passing through a difficult time right now and we know the gospel of Jesus Christ will bless her life and give her the help she needs. This pass week we set a baptism date with Susana for this Saturday, it is pretty quick but we feel she is ready. We do not have many other investigators but we are working hard to find them. This Sunday we had a total of around fifty members who attend church. It being a new branch there are not that many members, but from all those I have met they seem to all be great and are willing to help us out. I am very grateful for this opportunity to serve in Billinghurst and to help get this branch started, with faith in Jesus Christ everything is possible! Today Elder Grant and I went to the Capital because he had to go to the dentist. Capital was pretty sweet and pretty big, it was good to be in the city and to get a different look at Argentina. However, I am glad to be back in Billinghurst, we have a lot of work to do or you can say a lot of people waiting for us. The mission is amazing, this is the church of Jesus Christ. I am grateful for all of your love and support. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Mom, I love you. Con amor, Elder Brooks.

Monday, October 12, 2009

It was raining cats and dog bites

Dear Family and Friends, It is great to hear from you and sounds like everyone is doing great. I appreciate all of your emails and letters. I apologize if I do not comment on everything you ask me but with the limited time I do have it is hard to do so, plus I have a lot to write about today. Elder Tate and I finished this past transfer strong and it was not that easy. Saturday we went to go pick up lunch and as we passed by a house a dog jumped out and bit my leg. Lucky for me it was only a bite to my pants but he was able to rip a pretty big hole, if there is time I will send you a picture. Mom, I was able to get my pants sewn so do not worry and as for my leg, it is fine. Also, this past Saturday for most of the day the temperature was really nice , but all that changed really fast during the evening as it rained harder than I have ever seen it rain. We did not have the right clothing or I should i say we did not have anything to keep us from getting soaked but we enjoyed it hah! Elder Tate and I and also the other elders Elder Brown and Elder Unker all arrived to the apartment soaked. If I have time I will also send some of these rain pictures. Saturday night Elder Brown and I received a call that we would be leaving and we were able to say our goodbyes Sunday. It was tough leaving the members, converts, and investigators, you truly come to love those you serve. Today we all went to the transfer meeting. Elder Tate, Brown, Unker, and I all sat together with great anticipation. My transfer was one of the last to be announced. My new area will be the town of Billinghurst, andt is located in a city called San Martin. Billinghurst is a new area that our mission president just opened up last transfer prior to this transfer. It is located in more of the city, where there are no dirt streets. The apartment is brand new and very nice, I feel very humbled. Also I have received a new companion, Elder Grant. After the transfer meeting we met and came to realize that we are from the same hometown, Las Vegas! We went crazy as we were both very surprised. Elder Grant attended Bonanza High School and has been serving in the mission for quite a while, he will be leaving after this next transfer. We are very excited to get to work and continue to develop this new area, Billinghurst. Also, not too far from Billinghurst is the Buenos Aires North Mission, it is actually across the street from where we are typing our e-mails. Well that is my update on what is going on here, the mission is amazing I am very grateful for this opportunity to serve and for all of your support, I look forward to hearing from you soon. Con amor, Elder Brooks. Dad thanks for the dear elder Mom I do not really need much for my birthday the only suggestions I have are ties, deodorant (right guard), plastic disposable razors to shave, or candy. Thanks mom love you!

Friday, October 9, 2009

World - Wide Church

Dear Family and Friends, Sounds like you enjoyed general conference, it truly was amazing. I do not have much time to write so I am apologizing early for the rush. We were writing our emails in a place but the computers were just not working, I had my email almost done but I just was not able to send so we had to find another place to write and now we are short on time. I was able to watch most of the conference in English, however the Saturday morning and afternoon I had to watch in Spanish, but I was able to watch priesthood in English. Due to the time change priesthood ended a little late here, we arrived back to the apartment from the stake center at midnight, and we were pretty tired. We went right to bed and then woke right back up. Sunday was a big opportunity to bring some of our investigators to the conference and we clutched up and were able to bring ten of our investigators. During the sessions members brought food and we relaxed and went outside to eat. The mission is amazing, I know I might say that a lot but it is true. I can see and feel the gospel of Jesus Christ change my life. I am grateful for your love and support. I am grateful for a prophet that lives today, President Thomas S. Monson, who also loves us. This transfer is coming to a end this next week, so it looks like this could be my last week in Rafael Castillo. I have truly come to love those I have been serving, it might be a little hard to leave. I hope we can remember the feelings we felt this conference and continue to better ourselves and those around us as we live the gospel of Jesus Christ. I look forward to hearing from you soon. Con amor, Elder Brooks.

Slideshow of Elder Brooks' Mission

Cameron reads his mission call

Flag of Argentina

Flag of Argentina
The national flag of Argentina dates from 1812. The full flag featuring the sun is called the Official Ceremonial Flag (Spanish: Bandera Oficial de Ceremonia). The Official Ceremony Flag is the civil, state and war flag and ensign. The sun, called the Sun of May, is a replica of an engraving on the first Argentine coin, approved in 1813, whose value was eight escudos (one Spanish dollar). It has 16 straight and 16 waved sunbeams. According to tradition, during the Argentine War of Independence General Manuel Belgrano was commanding a battle near Rosario. He noticed that both the Crown's forces and the independence forces were using the same colors (Spain's yellow and red). After realizing this, Belgrano created a new flag using the colors that were used by the Criollos during the May Revolution in 1810. The flag was hoisted for the first time in Buenos Aires atop the Saint Nicholas of Bari Church on August 23, 1812. - Ref: