Monday, October 27, 2014

The last two weeks

Dear Mom and Dad,

First off, it was a little weird seeing all those photos. It seems like she didn't even leave. Here in the offices I have to send the old missionaries home and I've gotten used to it. But it was a little hard seeing Chelsea home and with the kids. These past 2 weeks have been the craziest. I dont even remember what happened 2 weeks ago.

This week that past we had transfers. Ive never been so busy in my life. First of all, the asistentes y el presidente hacen los cambios y después, los secretarios llevan a cabo lo que el presidente y asistentes hicieron. Estoy encargado de toda la transportación, vuelos, hojas de cambios (se los voy a explicar después), y lo que los demás secretarios no hacen. 

1. Transportation. Usualmente lo que hacemos es enviarlos en taxi. Siempre gastamos mucho dinero, a veces misioneros se quedan solos, y en el fin hay problemas. Esta vez le dije al presidente que deberíamos cambiar la manera de transporte. Pensamos mucho y en el fin decidimos a tener un micro. 1 micro para todos los misioneros. Había 4 paradas. Cada uno fue una capilla central de las zonas en Santa Cruz. Empezando a las 9:00am, el micro pasó por cada capilla. Los misioneros solo tenían que esperar hasta que llegara el micro. Lo subieron y bajaron según sus áreas nuevas. Todo salió bien. Lo vamos a hacer cada cambio desde hoy en adelante. 

2. Vuelos. I have to make flights, find transportation for them to and from the airport, and then change the flight mondaynight before cambios when president makes more changes.

3. Hojas de Cambios. This sheet is the one way that we let the zone leaders know who has transfers, where they are going, flight information, and everything. Before we used a transfer sheet that years ago was made by some of the secretaris. It was so hard to understand. It took so long to fill out and it was so hard to catch mistakes. All around it was just poorly made. I took it in to Presidents office and he told me ''I dont even want to look at this'' and I agreed. We decided the night before changes that we were going to completely redesign and reformat the whole thing. It took us a while to change the format but then filling the new sheets went way faster. President liked a lot the new ones. The day of transfers, after sending the hojas out to the Zone leaders, we hardly got any calls. (thats a good thing)

Also the beginning of this week we had leadership conference. So to add to our level of stress and work, we had to fly in all the leaders for monday night and tuesday morning. Then Tuesday night we had to be done with transfers. We had several nights in the offices way late. Then the cambios past and then we had to deal with the antiguos. We spent hours and hours in the airport. Also I made a few phone calls to parents to let them know their missionary´s plane was delayed. I don't like those phone calls very much. I think they don't too. 

My favorite part about this week was spending time tuesday with all the new missionaries. They are great. Its weird to see them and to think I was one of them just a few months ago. They don't speak any spanish and I know I was just like them. Its amazing to see how excited they are to work. They are so happy. They thought it was so cool that we had a bus to pick them up, they were so excited to eat at the restaurant close to the offices, and everything we did with tramites and visas was so fun to them. I remember when I first got here, I felt like that too. I love being able to teach them, help them be excited, and be the first one to help them start the mission. They are all great missionaries and will be leaders soon. There were 8 that came in. 

So this year of 2014 is the year when the church has been here for 50 years. In the beginning of the year President put the goal of having 1450 active converts or rescued by the end of the year. These last 2 months of the year we will be focusing on that. (2014 50 años) As part of our plan to meet this goal we started a '40 day' fast. We arent actually going to fast for 40 days but we will be purifying ourselves through our actions. Every day we drop one attribute bad and replace it with something better. 40 days is the exact number of days in the transfer. At the beginning of this transfer we read stories in the scriptures about the number 40 and what it represents and then we are mirroring the saviors 40 day fast and purification. I have already seen the miracles come. 

During transfers the secretaries are in and out of taxis traveling here and there. We have a ton of time to contact and talk with people. We took advantage of that this week. Out of everyone there were only a few that lived in our area but there is a guy named Mauricio. We haven't actually visited him yet but tomorrow we will. We had just gotten out of a taxi When we saw him wearing a shirt that said ''Elder'' so we had to talk to him. We starting talking, walked with him a little while, and he invited us to come back to his home. I´m not sure what will come of it but I know it was the start of the miracles that will come during this time and this 40 day fast. 

I love all.

Hurrah for Israel!

Elder Gehring

The blood on the floor is from when Elder Miranda stabbed his finger with a screwdriver. He was very scared. It was a deep wound. 

Monday, October 13, 2014


Hi there mom and dad and family,

If you need any questions answered about the Bolivian voting system you can ask me. I could probably help you out. I was put in charge of coordinating all the voting of the Bolivians with in our mission. There weren't very many but its so complicated here. I'll make you a short list of how it works.

1. You have to vote. If you don't, you end up paying a ton of fines and they take away certain rights and privileges.

2. You register to vote waaaaay in advance. Then the day (only one day) of elecciones you have to return to that same place. No exceptions. 

3. Its all by hand. Each school has tables, each table has a list of names and you have to vote on that table. The winner is chosen about 2 weeks later because it takes so long to count the votes. 1st they count who won each table, then who won the most tables in the school, then who won the most schools by district and then by province and then by another thing and then the country. 

4. No one here knows the rules on term length. We asked everyone and everyone had a different answer. One says one can only win twice, another says 5 times you can win, and another says that after winning 5 times in a row you become the president forever. Im not too sure which is right. 

5. You can't drive on elecciones day. You can't form large gatherings. You can't have religious meetings. You can't buy alcohol. No one in the whole country works. And as a mission, no one is even allowed to leave the house. 

That pretty much sums up all of yesterday. We stayed in the house for a really long time and it was boring. We ate lunch and we undercooked the hamburgers. I think we all are going to get sick. Also mom, I used the shark plates that you sent me. So good choice there. 

The rest of the week was so fast. I dont even remember what we did. It just flys by. We did end up staying late a couple times in the offices. I was in charge, with the assistance, of making a program for all the missionaries to follow during Sunday. It took so long. We kept changing a ton of stuff, President wanted this and then that and we were just blown away with the revelation he always receives. And this week that is coming up won't be any calmer. We have to start prepping for cambios again. It felt like yesterday that I was just walking into the office and now I have over 3 months here. 

This week we didn't teach very many lessons, but we taught one man who we have been having a lot of trouble with. He is married but has had a few difficulties in his marriage. We came to this lesson not sure of what to teach. We followed the spirit and found out he really had no idea who we were. He had no idea why we were always passing by, why we teach him and what our goal is. We were able to explain that to him through the teaching of the Plan of Salvation. He lit up. I saw his curiosity change and his mind working. He has so many questions and it was the first time he had heard of such a thing as a life after this one. We explained that through Jesus Christ we can be make perfect and because of Him, we can become who God sees and wants us to be. We are excited to return and help him understand a little more. He finished our lesson with a prayer which he had refused in previous lessons. The spirit was there and he knew it.

I love this work. And I love you all.

Hurrah for Israel!

Elder Gehring
Eating pizza

Elder Funk with money

Fotos of the kids

Free jello


Freeeeee jello



Lunch for elecciones

Lunch lunch

More lunch

Nap time



Serious jello

Table for lunch

Todos juntos


Monday, October 6, 2014

Conferencia General

Querido Familia,

No estoy hablando español mucho con mi compañero. Cada día intentamos a mejorar pero es difícil cuando los dos somos gringitos. Les voy a escribir en español para que yo pueda practicar mi español. Si habla, por favor corrija mis errores! Y va a disculpar si no me puede entender ya?

Esta semana pasó rápido y siento que hicimos nada en el fin. Hubo conferencia este fin de semana y no salimos a enseñar. Usualmente durante los sábados y domingos enseñamos más que los otros días en la semana pero este sábado y ayer no lo pudimos hacer. Siento que el trabajo en las oficinas a veces no nos deja a trabajar en nuestra área. Lunes y martes se llevó a cabo la conferencia de líderes. Siempre con esta conferencia hay tantas cosas para hacer. Lunes, yo estaba ayudando a los asistentes con alguno problems en nuestros números del mes pasado y me olvidé llamar el micro para recoger a los misioneros que habían llegado de Tarija. Sentí tan mal. Algunos de los Líderes de Zona se pusieron un poco enojado que tenían que tomar taxi. Jamás me voy a olvidar el micro. Pero en la conferencia aprendí mucho de los otros líderes y también de Presidente y su esposa. Me di cuenta de que tengo muchas cosas en mi vida que no hago bien. Esta conferencia mas de todo me hummiló. Ahora sé que cada día hay algo que el Señor quiere que aprenda yo. Por medio de mi estudio personal y el tiempo en las mañanas puedo buscar lo que el Señor me está revelando. Aprendimos mucho de los estudios y la importancia que tienen ellos en nuestras misiones. 

Después de la conferencia tuvimos que escribir una carta a la misión, o sea, una lista de anuncios. Los secretarios siempre tienen algo para decir a los misioneros. Hicimos una copia, después una otra, una otra, y una mas. Cada vez que cambiamos algo, Presidente quería colocar algo diferente. Estábamos en las oficinas hasta 10:15 pm con el presidente para que pudiéramos terminar todo. Él nos llevó en su auto en el fin. El próximo día tuvimos que enviar esta lista de anuncios a todos los líderes de zona. Fuimos temprano a las oficinas para terminar las últimas cosas y enviárselos a los LZ. No sé si ellos entendieron todo pero por lo menos enviamos todo. 

Jueves tuvimos nuestra primera lección de la semana. Enseñamos a Fabio y Daniel. Ellos están progresando poco a poco. Su mamá de Daniel todavía no le ha dado permiso de ser bautizado a Daniel. Él siempre nos recibe y vamos a ver en el futuro lo que dice su madre. Fabio está un poco más difícil. Está leyendo de vez en cuando y no ora mucho. Explicamos la importancia de la conferencia general y nos dijo que iba a ir. Cuando fuimos sábado estuvimos muy triste por no verle a él. Domingo tampoco vino él. Pasamos y le llamamos mucho pero no sé qué pasó. Parece que desapareció. Esta semana le queremos visitar más para fortalecer su fe en Cristo. 

Vimos a la conferencia general en inglés. Fue una bendición aunque puedo entender en español. Con los demás misioneros de EEUU, escuchamos a los profetas vivientes. Amo conferencia general. Amo los mensajes que escuché. Me pongo triste en el fin cada vez que termine la conferencia. 6 meses de esperar y solo 2 días de instrucción y mensajes. Ni modo, sé que estos 6 meses que vienen van a pasar rápido. 

He leido mucho en Mosíah esta semana en preparación para la conferencia. Leí la historia del Rey Benjamín y lo que su pueblo hizo para prepararse para escuchar a él. Traté a hacer lo mismo antes de esta conferencia y estoy agradecido por mi preparación antes. Oraba, leyía, pensaba mucho de lo que quería aprender. Mis oraciones fueron contestadas. Les prometo que Dios nos contesta a medida que oremos con fe y con propósito. 

Les quiero mucho a ustedes. 

Hurrah for Israel! 

Elder Gehring
Y también nos vamos a mudar. Vamos a vivir en el piso 17 de los Torres Cainco en el centro. Presento: La Vista.