This last week was the craziest week in the office so far, but also one of the best! It was changes week, so we had to get everything ready for 31 new missionaries coming! There were 22 new gringos and 9 new Latins. On Monday, the first group came, and we went to get them from the airport. Sometimes I just have to chuckle a bit when I see the new missionaries and see how lost they look, and I look back and remember exactly how they feel!
We did the training meeting, then Tuesday morning, we did it all over again with the nine Latins that came in the morning. We did the training, then they went to their areas. On Tuesday night, the new gringos came, so we went to go pick them up from the airport. I didn't stay at the airport because another Elder had to get things from the office. There is a new gringo, Elder D, who is 6'10"! He is the biggest in the mission and has a full-ride to play basketball at BYU after his mission, so we will definitely have to look out for him!
We took the new elders and hermanas to a hotel to stay, and it was bad because they lost both of our reservations, but we got it all worked out. Wednesday was another day of training, and getting the old missionaries dinner and ready to go home the next day. One of the new gringos is getting trained in Cuidad Bolivar! I am so excited for that kid! We found out that I am training a new general secretary in the office now! That means I will be leaving the office in six weeks, and that Elder O will stay in the office for almost a year. It is going to be bittersweet to leave the office.
My new companion is Elder A from Bountiful. He has one change less than me, and I have wanted to be his companion my entire mission! We are really similar and unified in our companionship, so I am so happy! He is going to be a great secretary!
This last week, we found a menos activo family that we have been looking for the Y family. It is just the mom and the daughter, who is 23. They used to be really active, even the missionaries lived in their house for a while! We set up a dinner with them for this week, and we are going to get them to come back to church activity!
This last Sunday was great. I have been thinking that when I take the sacrament, I should be able to feel the same way I did at my baptism because I am just renewing those covenants. If I do not properly prepare myself, I am losing out on an opportunity to truly and correctly take the sacrament so that it purifies me. I have had some good experiences these last two weeks trying to prepare myself more for the sacrament.
I had to get some new socks, and I had to get my shirts altered, and I had to get my old Danskos fixed because there was an Elder here who has had a really rough mission, and his shoes were going out, so I gave him my mission shoes because he didn't have any money to buy other ones. It felt really good. And I want to be able to use the new Danskos when I come home, so if I can get the old one fixed I can wear those the rest of my mission. And changes week is a little expensive so some of it was spent on that.
Well family, know that I am happy. I am excited that we have positive investigators right now to teach and that I get to serve as a missionary at this time in my life!
Elder Austin Michael Kipp