Monday, February 29, 2016

I almost had an hijito

Hi everyone!

Well this week was pretty normal here, to be completely honest. We only had a couple weird things that almost happened to us last Monday. But now it's all back to normal. Here's what happened: 

So. P-day ends last week right? We decided to go bowling as a district. I've done that a lot in my mission I've realized. Whatever. And so we get back to our apartment and we leave right at 6 to go work. We make it about 5 blocks away from the apartment when all of a sudden I get a phone call: PRESIDENT. It's only about the 4th or 5th phone call I've gotten from him in the last week. I'm just thinking "please don't tell me another grandpa died." Fortunately it wasn't that. He was calling with a special assignment for me! So there was this brand new elder in the mission that was having a really hard time getting used to the mission life and everything. He was in San Juan, where it's REALLY hot and I'm pretty sure he was in a pretty poor area. Probably a lot to get used to. And he wanted to go home. He talked to President about it, and President gave him the option of going to another area that has a nicer apartment, nicer area in general, stuff like that. And he told President that he'd go for 2 days and see if it was better. And then President asked me, he's like "So I'm trying to think of kind of nice area with a nice apartment and stuff like that. Do you have any ideas?" And I'm like "Ummm... I don't know President. Maybe Sarmiento would be a good area for this elder." And he's like "That's exactly what I was thinking!" So President was going to send me a little hijo for a couple days. My job was to help him SURVIVE. Yikes! So we went and packed and everything, cause the next day we had to be in the office. I even tried calling all the members I knew to ask them to help this elder feel really welcome and comfortable. And then the next day we went with everything, but unfortunately we were told that this elder no longer wanted to come to Sarmiento with me, he was just going to go home. So... all of that didn't happen. I'm still here with Elder Levander. 

It was a good week though! Hardly ANYTHING happened. But it was great. We spent a lot of time opening the mouth and knocking doors, and we had much more success than I expected or thought we even deserved. Sometimes when your only plans are just knocking doors basically you kind of have a hard time feeling excited. But the Lord blessed us anyway, and this week we've got a lot of future investigators that we're going to visit. We were very blessed. 

So that's about all. I hope everyone has a great week!

Elder Bingham

Monday, February 22, 2016

Swallowed up in the joy of Christ

Dear Family: 

Wow. What a week. I suppose I've just got to start by saying that all this news about Grandpa was really unexpected! I was really sad when I heard the news. It was just so random! When I saw that President Goates was calling me on Thursday it was definitely the last thing I expected to hear him say. I hope all of you are doing well.... Send my condolences to Grandma especially. 

I'm doing okay though. I got the phone call from President on Thursday it was about the hour of the ciesta, when we're in our pension doing the other half of our studies. He had actually called me on Tuesday to do the Ecclesiastical Endorsement interview for BYU, so I was kind of expecting a follow up or something of that. But, it definitely wasn't. I sat there after the phone call just wondering in disbelief at how this all could have happened. What President had told me didn't make any sense, because Grandpa didn't have any health problems really and I was just kind of confused, sad, and to the point of tears. I even asked myself why I had to lose two grandpas on the mission, none of it really made any sense. Elder Levander was off in a different room so he could read out loud to himself in Spanish, so I just knelt down and offered a quick prayer.  

Right before President called though I was just studying for next week's district meeting, which is about the role of the Spirit in conversion, and I had just opened up the Book of Mormon in Alma 31:38. And then I got up from my prayer and sat back down to start reading again, cause I really had nothing else to do. And I just felt this overwhelming sense of comfort that I had never really experienced before. If you read the scripture it says this: 

 38 And the Lord provided for them that they should hunger not, neither should they thirst; yea, and he also gave them strength, that they should suffer no manner of afflictions, save it were swallowed up in the joy of Christ. Now this was according to the prayer of Alma; and this because he prayed in faith.

What an answer to a prayer, right? The Lord just basically told me "Go and work, and everything will be alright." That's what Alma and all his bretheren did when they went and preached to the Zoramites. So, in short, that's what we did this week. I'm doing alright here. Don't worry about me. I'll be fine. I'm just going to go work. 

So what did I learn this week? God is awesome. And he does in fact hear and answer our prayers, and comforts us and strengthens us in times of need. That's my short sermon for this week. 

I love you all. I wish you all the best. 

Elder Bingham.

P.S. Yesterday I made Philly Cheese Steaks in honor of Grandpa. They were delicious. I just wish there was Dr. Pepper here. 

Here's a cute picture. Happy birthday.
Had a fun little family home evening on my birthday with an awesome member family and an investigator!

I have an awesome district. They got me a moustache for my birthday

Elder Levander was nice enough to share his poptarts with me! It was delicious. 

Monday, February 15, 2016


Hi everyone! Thank you guys SO MUCH for all the birthday wishes! Right now I'm having just a splendid day, and I'm really grateful that God has let me live 20 years of my life. But once again, thanks a bunch to everyone who's ever been a part of my life basically these last 2 decades. They've been a riot. I hope all your lives are all great as well. 

So... I'm in another new area! And I'm washing another area! This would be the 4th. So this isn't anything new to me. My new comp Elder Levander and I just got right off the bat this week, and I think I already know how to get my way around the area and basically all the active members in the ward. The ward's called Sarmiento by the way. It's a really small ward, especially compared to my last ward in Lujan. And I'm in the same stake. We probably get a maximum of 50 for attendance every week. But the members here are so great! They're all so ready to help us, we've just got to find some things to do first. The problem is this: Our zone leaders (who were here last transfer) were basically inside the apartment all transfer, because one of them got sick with bronchitis and couldn't leave the pension. Now he's resting up a little bit working as a new office worker. But anyway, they couldn't leave us with very much to do, cause they couldn't do very much. And I'm not complaining. Just stating the fact that now we only have 2 investigators in our area and we don't even know which less-actives to work with. So it's all on us to find new people! And for some reason I'm just WAY excited to do it! I just really want to blow up this area right now, and I really think it can. The members are really great, we just are going to need a little help from them. 

So.... We're trying out some new ideas. Sarmiento is honestly a hard area. It's not a big area, but it's FULL of houses. And it's a really rich part of Mendoza. All the houses here are really nice. And So the people here aren't very humble... And want nothing to do with us when we knock doors. We've almost had 0 success with that. So me and Elder Levander were looking for some ideas during our studies one morning. And we received inspiration from God! And I think it's going to EXPLODE this area! We found it right out of Preach my Gospel. And it's this little activity we can do with members. We help them make a list of people they know that aren't members. It doesn't even matter if they don't think they'll listen to our message, cause we never really know when God is preparing people, right? And he might not even be preparing that person specifically, he could be preparing a friend or neighbor of theirs. So the members make the list, and then they pray to see who on that list is prepared to receive it. And then we go with the member to visit them! We're still in the process of doing it all, so we haven't received a lot of results yet, but the members are all really excited to do it. And so now I'm excited. And I want to BLOW THINGS UP here! 

So that's about it. Elder Levander is way cool. He's from Nebraska. Nobody knows how to say either of our names, even though they aren't very hard to say. Whatever. I'm excited. 


Elder Bingham

Super zone meeting. There were lots of extra people with us that were going to train this transfer that didn't have a place to go before they got their companions, so we had like a double sized zone meeting.
Going to do tracting with all the newbies! It was a blast!
So I found a new hobby, and it's called carving palm tree husks into cool mask things! His name is Paco the Palmera.
Elder Levander
 Epic selfie with all the people we played soccer with in Lujan last week!

Monday, February 8, 2016

What a weird week

Well hello everyone! Happy Super Bowl! I'm glad to hear the Broncos won. That's cool. Basically all of us in Lujan were cheering for them. Anyway though, glad to hear everyone's doing great! 

So this week was a little odd. Basically just the transfer calls we got. But I'll get to that. So... Once upon a time I used to live with my companion and 2 other elders in the same apartment. And in a 4 man apartment it can be kind of difficult to do certain things, like find time in the morning to shower without interupting study time. So, President decided that we should change apartments. And me and Elder Castillo found one! And this week we spent much of our time getting all moved in. But not just that. Since we were living with other missionaries before, we shared the fridge and the stove and all the wash buckets and plates and forks and everything else I'm forgetting. And obviously we couldn't take all of that, or else the other elders wouldn't have anything. So we had to spend all of our time this week shopping. And we still don't have a stove. The apartment though is way nice! It's perfect for our area because it's right next to the bus stop, 10 minutes closer to the chapel walking, right in centro Lujan, and it's just a really nice apartment compared to what I've lived in my whole mission. It just doesn't have anything yet. But here's the weird part:

Obviously this apartment was too good for us to have. Cause we're both leaving! WHAT? But we both just got here together! Well, President is changing a lot of things in the mission. He wants all the leaders of the mission to have an area that can show an example to the other missionaries when they come for intercambios. And now the zone leaders are coming to my area. And where am I going? To the zone leader's area. It's like a 15 minute bus ride. And I'm getting a new comp... Elder Levander. He sounds like a cool guy. He's the son of my MTC comp Elder Clarke. Also... President's making me district leader! What? Didn't see that coming. I definitely don't feel qualified. But you know... I guess you never do right? The Lord qualifies who he calls. I'm really sad I'm leaving Lujan/Perdriel. It's a super good ward. But I'm still really close. I'll literally going to Perdriel to do intercambios with the zone leaders, and I'll know the area better than they will. For a while. 

So... That's basically what happened! It's been a kind of humbling few hours. But, we'll see how it goes! I'm really grateful for the new opportunity I have this transfer and I just pray that the Lord will help me be an ok district leader. 

I love you all! Have a great week! And happy Valentines day! :D

Elder Bingham

Our new apartment that we don't get to live in! Hooray!

Super Bowl Sunday. We're wearing our colors.

Look what we found! ANOTHER really gorey dog!

Garlic/onion fields smell really bad.


The Zarate family, that we were lucky enough to say goodbye to just in case we got transfered. 
And we did. They're way awesome.

Monday, February 1, 2016

A week of miracles!

Dearest family:

Hey everyone! How's everyone? I personally had a very fantastic week! Let me tell you about it!

So. For starters. Me and Elder Castillo have been making some goals recently to try and make our daily planning more effective, and there's been a big emphasis recently in the mission on making goals that we can actually accomplish and having the faith to do it and stuff. So that was our big focus this week! And let me tell you, it worked really well! We had a MUCH better week than we did last week. Well, last week we weren't in the area, but this week was just one of the best weeks I've had in a long time as far as lessons and stuff goes. We were nearly able to accomplish every one of our goals that we set this week! It was a miracle! Or more like lots of miracles, combined into one giant miracle! I'm now going to tell you about where the majority of our success came from: 

So once upon a time this week we were looking through old investigators, and we found a name that seemed promising. Her name is Laura. She was investigating the chuch about 5 years ago. And we found her again on Tuesday we went and talked to her. Well, she's been through a lot these last few years. She's about 38, and she recently just got out of a rough time with her ex-husband. Apparently she was abused by him a lot while they were together, but now he's been put in prison. Right now she's actually got a permanent guard outside of her house in case the family of her ex comes to avenge him. Hopefully that doesn't happen. But right now the biggest problem for her is that because of all the psychological trauma that came as a result of the abuse she can't have custody of her children. She recently just got certified by a psychologist saying she's now mentally stable, she just has to do some more things and then she can have her kids back. She also has a boyfriend name Juan, and they're both investigating right now. They are both very religious though! They have very strong testimonies of God and know that none of all this was his fault. This week we taught them the Plan of Salvation and The Restoration, and they basically believed all of it already. We invited them to read the Book of Mormon and pray and they're already doing it. It was awesome to be able to find them at such a crucial point in her life! We're hoping to see even more success this week. 

Well, that's about it! This week we get transfer calls again, so I'll let you know what happens! I'm hoping I get to train... It would be cool. Whatever happens though, it'll be great. 

Love you all!

Elder Bingham

I took some pictures finally! Or Elder Castillo did. Here's some!