Photo number 1: Picture of the family Campopiano, for Christmas I gave them a Preach my Gospel because the two boys will be going on missions this next year! She is the one that washes our garments every week. Awesome family
Photo number 2: I gave Esteban y Miriam (my converts) that picture of the first presidency, and I laminated it and put my testimony on the back and stuff, it was a really fun night with them.
Photo number 3: Baptism of Guillermo (9year old special boy) and Juan (18 year old) they both got baptized this last saturday and it was an incredible night! They both had been through a lot of missionaries but never were able to get baptized, and weren´t ever ready before, but the Lord blessed us to be able to get them both baptized!
Photo number 4: Another photo of baptism with the Branch Presidente (Older guy) and the 1st councelor (younger guy)
Photo number 5: A picture of Guillermo coming out of the water. He was SO stoked!! He absolutely loved it!
Photo number 6: A picture of Juan coming out of the water, he was super excited too!
Photo number 7: A picture of us and Juan coming out of the water
I sent a few photos in the last email, I hope you all enjoy them! It was really awesome being able to skype you all and see you all, and see how you are all doing! I was able to get a hold of Gigi and Papa for a few minutes too, which was great to be able to talk to all the cousins and aunts and uncles that were there. It really helped me a lot to talk to each of you and see your faces, and how excited you all were! I thought it would make me miss you all more, but it did the opposite to know you´re all doing well, and you´re still there, and still my family! And to be able to see Josh too was great. You all seem like you´re doing well, and I hope you were able to have a wonderful Christmas! We passed it really well, and were able to enjoy a lot of food, and a lot of company from the members here. They are all wonderful, and they all say hi to each of you! I showed them all pictures of you and that made it a lot more personal, which was really cool. Last monday I was able to give a few really cool gifts out to people. The first, I gave a Preach my Gospel to one of the really active families here, called the Campopiano family. They have a boy that is going to be leaving on his mission this year, and another boy that will leave in 2 years, and the mom is really focused on helping us, so I gave them a preach my gospel to be able to prepare and to be able to read together as a family. It was really cool to see how thankful they were, and it was cool because it really wasn´t a big deal. But through the Lord´s help we were able to give them something they really cherish. After that we went to Esteban and Miriam´s house, and I gave them each a picture of some temples, and one of those Priesthood cards we bought before I left, and I gave them the picture of the First Presidency you guys sent me in my last package. I put my testimony and laminated it, and they were really excited to put it up in their little humble home. Now it´s there bright and center for all to see, so that they can remember that we have a living profet to guide us in our days. Maria y Evelyn y Ruth weren´t there last week, but tonight we arranged to eat dinner with them, and i´m going to give Ruth that Book of Mormon in drawings to her. I wrote my testimony and marked a few stories so that she can start reading and understanding, and I wrote how as a family we always read that together for years, and it really helped me to understand, and I know she´s going to love it!
This week was really special, because we were able to baptize Guillermo and Juan. Guillermo is 11 years old, and when he was 2 they told his parents that he wasn´t going to live past 5, and if he did, he was never going to walk or talk. Now Guillermo is 11 and walks, and talks, and only has a slight handicap with his words and with his speech, But he´s extremely smart, and I love him to death. He always comes up and gives me a big giant hug when he sees me, and he´s really special for me. His parents were so happy to hear that he finally wanted to get baptized, because before there have been like 3 or 4 different companionships that have tried to baptize him, but he never payed attention in the lessons, and didn´t show that he wanted to, but we were able to use a lot of patience, and he was able to answer all the questions and he was really excited to get baptized. In the baptism, after the ordinance they gave his dad a few minutes to be able to give his testimony, and he got really emocional and expressed how imporant this day was for him, because he never thought his boy would live to have this day come. He got really emocional and thanked us a lot in his testimony for having patience and being able to teach him, but really it was all our Heavenly Father that made it possible. He gave us the opportunity and we were able to pay attention to the spirit and make it happen. The mom was also really emocional when she saw him come out of the water, and Guillermo had just the brightest, most wonderful smile you can imagine on his face, gave the Branch Presidente that baptized him a big hug, and looked right at his mom and waved with this million dollar happiness grin on his face, and she began to cry and looked so happy. I am so thankful to be a part of this wonderful event! It was so awesome! I love this family so much. The family in total are like 12 people. It´s a huge family, and now they feel just like my family.
We were also able to find some really prepared people this week from other members who have gotten really excited for the Missionary work, and how much we are able to work with members. My convert Maria has a cousin named Albertina, she´s Brasilera, from Brasil, and doens´t speak extremely well Castellano, so we got her a book of mormon in Portuguese and she is progressing really well, she came to church yesterday, and she actually went to the baptism on saturday too, and loved it! She´s like 62 years old and she´s just this happy, hard working little old lady, and I already love her to death! SHe is preparing to be batpized the 19th of January! We also had another cool encounter with another really active family, the family Elizalde, the mom´s brother drinks and smokes a lot, and he´s the only brother out of like 6 that isn´t baptized, and for CHristmas he drank way too much and had to go to the hospital, and that scared him a lot, because he lives alone with his 5 year old kid, and he is 42, and it scared him that one day he wouldn´t be able to control himself and do damage to him or his kid that can´t be repaired, so he decided to start listening to us, and he came to church too, and is excited to get baptized the 19th as well. It´s amazing to see how God prepares people through the members, and how he is blessing us so much right now! We have anther member, Santiago (He´s the bigger kid in the family that I gave the Preach my Gospel to, and the one that is going to leave on his mission this year) and he invited one of his friends to church yesterday, and he came! So we went to his house yesterday, and the kid´s name is Andrés, and he told us that for the past few months he´s had this "hunger" to look for God in his life, and to find the true church. It´s just absolutely amazing how our Heavenly Father prepares people when we are doing what we should be. We´ve been trying to be so so so obedient these past few weeks, that´s it´s gotten to the point where I can literally see how the blessings come as a result of our obedience. I´m so excited for all these people, and If you could all remember them in your prayers please to be able to help them, and to keep them strong to be able to get baptized and change their lives. Thanks for everything everyone, I love you all, and hope that you all have a wonderful new years! I´ll talk to you all next year!!!! Love Elder Allsup!
HAPPPPPYYYYYY NNNEEEEEWWWWWW YEEEAAAAARRRRSSSS 2013 CAN YOU BELIEVE IT?!