Hey! Sorry, I haven't received any new letters since I got into the field, so this is my only contact with you that I've had for almost two weeks!
So Guachpita is the area I'm serving in! It's in Santo Domingo! So it's actually like the slums of Santo Domingo, but to tell you the truth, I think that most of the area around here is slums. It is poor like you've never seen.
Remember when we saw the pictures of the Santo Domingo East Mission on Facebook? They were contacting someone at a tin shack. That is what I'm working in. But don't worry Mom, the place where I live is way better than that. So we work mostly in the area with the tin shacks and also a place that is just full of these buildings that are about four or five stories tall and made of pure cement, and I'm not kidding, cement floors, walls, and ceilings, and they're all pretty old. There is a lot of trash on the streets and everywhere in general. The water only comes certain days of the week, and it rains a lot too. They really don´t have very good water drainage either, and on the days when they get water from the pipes (only certain days of the week like I mentioned earlier) to drink and use, it pours out of kind of funny places. Like in the slums with the cement skyscrapers, the water pours down from one of the higher floors into the courtyard type of area that is between two buildings.
Boy Mom, if you could see some of the places I've been! Wow, we took a taxi today and we stuffed like six elders into the shotgun seat and the back seat of a little beat up car that didn't even have an inside cover on the door. We've already had to take a motorcycle, because we were running late on Saturday, haha.
So anyway, enough about where I'm at, sorry to go on with that, it doesn't really matter, I'll talk about the work! So I'm getting trained by an Elder who has been out about 14 or 15 months named Elder Blake. Mom, I think that there is a website called missionarymoms.com or something that all of the Moms join, and his mom is on there, so you should check it out if you want! He is from Boston Dad! (Henry served his mission in Boston!)
We're doing so great! I cannot believe how much the Lord has blessed us this week! In my first week! We met all of the mission norms for the first time in Elder Blake´s whole mission! In my first week! Those are like standards that we try to achieve. And we had a baptism! On my first Saturday! Wow, the Lord really blessed me! Just to give you an idea, we taught about 43 lessons and had 15 new investigators this week!
I had pictures of the Baptism, but I forgot my USB cord at home, so I´ll have to send pictures next week!
So we have a baptismal date set for every Saturday of every week including General Conference Saturday every week until the 23 of October except for the 16 right now I think.
I really have been blessed beyond measure, because this area was not having success earlier, and I think my companion has been working here for two transfers already, and his work set everything up so that we could have so much success when I got here. We´re also teaching a couple of families. One of them we taught last night. It's a Dad, a Mom, and two kids, age 12 and 8. The Dad's name is Victor. It is such a privilege to be a representative of Jesus Christ and have the opportunity to teach an entire family as they sit together before you. Wow, if I could have the privilege to bring them to the knowledge of their Savior, and see them be sealed together as a family for Eternity, that would be priceless. I was thinking about that today, and that would truly be something that never ended. That would be happiness, and a difference in someone's life, joy that would never end. Oh, I hope that I can be a part of that, bringing a family into the Gospel, so that they never fall away.
So I didn't get to baptize on Saturday, but his name was Bryan and he is about 12 I believe. The funny part was, we had one baptism, but in Church on Sunday Morning we had two confirmations. A boy showed up that got baptized about two months ago! I guess he had never been to church since!
So that is so sweet that Elder Hyde is getting trained by Elder Taylor!
Oh, I saw Elder McBride again at Transfers! He gave me a tie! Transfers are why I couldn't email you, because in the MTC we had Thursday Preparation Days, and in the field their on Mondays. Transfers are on Tuesdays, and so I started in the field on Tuesday and this is my first Preparation Day!
I think that you can send letters in an envelope to this Miami Address, in fact, my companion says to use this one.
Elder Jeffrey DeSpain
2250 NW 114th Ave. Unit 1A
Miami FL 33172
Thank you so much for all that you do! I just want to say a little something in closing, I have grown to love the Song ¨I Know that My Redeemer Lives¨ Satan will work so hard to scare you and discourage you, he is really good at what he does. He will work so hard to get you afraid, but we have to recognize that that is how he works, through fear. Jesus Christ lives to silence all my fears! He lives, He lives, and He will always conquer Satan, we just have to look to Him!
I've got to go, sorry! I love you so much!!!!!!!!!!!!
Elder Jeff DeSpain