Turns out Elder Jensen knows a little bit of ASL and Elder Greer was
wanting to know if he knew it well.
This week, we...
- Have some interesting experiences on Wednesday night
- Have exchanges with the Zone Leaders and find out just how weird English work is
- Teach Saif and get a baptismal date!
- Add some people!
- Add some more people!
- And the rest of the time, walk around and try potential after
potential after potential...
First off, what do pumpkin seeds, a drunk guy, and giant cockroaches have to do with each other? The answer is "Wednesday night on El Cajon Main Street". We started Wednesday off by walking around the streets visiting potential after potential without any lessons and a lot of No's and "Go teach Muslims!" On Wednesday night we decided to walk on
Main Street because there are almost always Arabic-speakers there that we can try. As we were walking we noticed a drunk guy playing in traffic and commented to ourselves how he's drunk and we should go out of our way to avoid him (the best we've gotten out of a drunk person is "No"; the worst is usually something about how they're God or some
other major historical figure). So as we're walking and talking with this family, Drunk Guy spots us. And yells at us. Typical, drunk people in El Cajon have a tendency to yell at us. And then he runs toward us swearing up a storm, stops, gets in Elder Greer's face and tells him (in between the cussing and slurred speech) to get lost because he doesn't like us.
Now Elder Greer is from Florida and grew up in an area where he got to interact with drunks from time to time, so he calmly told the man "Sir, you're drunk. You need to leave." And when that didn't work out we both just walked away resolving to call the police if he follows us. He didn't. But he did take the time to circle back about 10 minutes later and remind us (from a distance this time) that he doesn't like us. Interestingly, I think he's the same guy that told Elder Poffenbarger and I that he was Jehovah (I'm pretty sure I talked about that a while ago).
After that little incident we kept walking and talking with people with again a whole lot of "Not interested. Thanks." As we're talking with this one guy he reaches into his pocket and pulls out a handful of pumpkin seeds and proceeds to drop them in Elder Greer's hand. Elder Greer stood there rather confused for a second and then continued talking. The man then put his hand in his pocket again and gave me a handful of pumpkin seeds. We both walked away from the situation very confused. Why did he have pumpkin seeds? Why did he think we wanted pumpkin seeds? What are we supposed to do with these pumpkin seeds?
So we walked on and ran into another guy right in front of a closed-down lawn mower shop. As Elder Greer and I were talking with this guy, we both noticed on the building one cockroach. Then another. Then another. And then a few more. Which was rather disgusting to watch and rather distracting. So after we finished up the street contact we got out of that area as fast as we could before the cockroaches decided they'd much prefer the sidewalk (and the missionaries standing on said sidewalk) than the seemingly-abandoned lawn mower shop.
And really this isn't that exciting but it's probably one of the only major things that happened this week.
On Friday we had exchanges with the Zone Leaders. Since Elder Greer is the District Leader the Zone Leaders go on exchanges with him once a transfer. So Elder Greer was with Elder Fiso in Arabic work while I went to Fuerte with Elder Harris.
English work is weird. Super super weird.
As we were teaching lessons a lot of times I'd almost hit a wall in teaching because I was so used to hearing Arabic and speaking in Arabic that I at times couldn't figure out what to say in English, especially when we were teaching the Restoration. We taught a few people who are progressing towards baptism and tried some less-actives in Fuerte boundaries (Fuerte covers downtown El Cajon, which includes many care facilities and halfway houses. I'll let you make the connection there).
On Saturday we taught Saif again. This time we brought a member with us and taught the Plan of Salvation. His whole family was home, but they didn't want to participate in the lesson, so they just sat in the dining room chatting while Saif listened intently and participated very actively in the lesson. Once we got to "Our Life on Earth" in the Plan of Salvation, Elder Greer invited him to be baptized. He said yes! And accepted a date for August 25th!!!!!!!!!
He wasn't able to come to church, but we feel like he's solid. After Saif, we brought the same member to teach a potential named Hind. We were able to teach Hind and her mother, Aida, the Restoration. They got it! They said they would be baptized if they knew it was true. They're a great family.
Yesterday we went to teach a family we had street contacted earlier in the week, Mazin and his son, Yusif. We got in the door with them and the wife joined us for the lesson. After starting off by showing them "Because He Lives", we taught the Restoration. They're a Catholic family but said they were willing to listen and learn more. We got a return appointment set up for this Saturday, so we'll see how that goes.
And for completeness' sake, fill in the rest of the time I haven't mentioned with "We walked around a lot and tried a bunch of potentials with a lot of 'No thanks' responses." On a semi-related note, Elder Greer and I have noticed that it's getting hotter in El Cajon now that it's August.
That's it for this week! Sorry for a rather uninteresting email. Thank you all for your letters, both electronic and physical! I love being able to hear from friends and family, so be sure to write whenever you can! As always, my address is in the signature. Have a great week!
-- Elder Hawkes