Friday, October 14, 2016

Week 68 -Good Bye Lugo's

 Don't Study and eat at the same time?
 The office picture.  
 The relaxed office picture
At the bus stop with the Lugo's

Family and Friends,

This week went by way too fast! I feel like I just wrote home yesterday and amazes me that another week passed by. The highlights of this week (since last Friday) of course include the last weekend of Elder and Sister Lugo here in the mission and leaving them in the airport, a couple of unexpected conversations with old friends, and a very obvious and immediate testimony of the blessings of keeping the Sabbath Day holy. 

This past weekend was crazy busy! I was spending every minute I could in the offices with Sister Lugo so she could pass me every last drop of financial wisdom. I was calling her day and night asking for instructions and advice to handle the never ending To Do list. Then, on Sunday night, we took our last traditional Sunday night office picture, and Elder and Sister Lugo left the mission offices for the last time. On Monday morning, Elder Lopez and I went to the bus station to drop them off and say good bye for the last time. It was hard to see them leave and I miss them so much! It's always such a strange sensation to say goodbye to missionaries at the end of their mission. I have now had the privilege of dropping off close to 20 missionaries in the airport/bus station, and you can always feel a little of what they are feeling: sadness, excitement, anxiousness, joy, etc. It's truly an indescribable combination of feelings, and only a fraction of what missionaries feel when they leave I am sure. However, even though the Lugos have left  coupled with several semi-serious computer issues, we are doing well and surviving. 

Even though I felt sad on Monday morning saying goodbye to the Lugo's, I was thrilled to be able to have two very unexpected phone conversations later that day. Since I inherited Sister Lugo's ''financial secretary cell phone'', Sister Rodriguez, the wife of my ex-mission president, President Rodriguez, called to say bye to sister Lugo. Sadly, Sister Lugo had already left, so I passed to Sister Rodriguez, the contact information of Sister Lugo, but then I got to talk to Sister Rodriguez for a few minutes and it was so great to talk with her again! Then later that evening, I received a call from Utah and was a little scared to answer the phone, not knowing who it would be! However, I was super excited to talk with Elder Flores from Chihuhua, Mexico! Elder Flores, just like Sister Rodriguez, wanted to talk with Sister Lugo, so I passed him her number. Elder Flores was my first zone leader here in the mission and also my companion for my very first day in the field before I started my training with Elder Suarez.  I have always looked up to him and was super excited to talk with him and remember some of my favorite moments of my mission. 

Also, this past Sunday, Elder Lopez and I meet a man named Rodolpho at church. Rodolpho was baptized about 2 years ago but hasn't been going to church recently while looking for a job. Elder Lopez and I were super excited to meet him and happy he came for the first time in a while. At the end of the services, Rodoloph asked if we could go to his house to ask him for help with his English. We agreed and said we could pass by Monday night to get to know the rest of his family and help him with whatever he needed. 

On Monday, Elder Lopez and I realized we had a ton of work to do in the offices and decided that we weren't going to be able to go to Rodolpho's house. We called him to tell him and he told us that it was urgent so he decided to come to the offices so we could help him. Turns out, Rodolpho had scheduled a job interview on Tuesday morning to be an English teacher at a local college and needed help with his English presentation he would make on Tuesday. Elder Lopez and I helped correct a few things and worked on his pronunciation and then at the end Rodolpho said, ''man, I sure hope I get this teaching job, if I don't, I will have to leave behind my wife and teenage children and move to Mexico City to look for work''. Elder Lopez and I reassured him that if he trusted in the Lord and relied on him, everything would turn out well, regardless if he was given the job or not. 

Yesterday, Elder Lopez and I passed by Rodolpho's house and the first thing he said when he saw us was, ''They called me! I am the newest English teacher at the tech!''. He was so excited and grateful that God had provided a way for him to get the job so that he could stay with his family. Later, Elder Lopez and I mentioned that Rodolpho was able to get the job by keeping the Sabbath day holy and going to church. If Roldopho would not have gone to church on Sunday, he would not have meet us before his interview. And if Rodolpho hadn't met us before his interview, he may not have been able to get the job without our English help. This experience taught me how important it is to go to church every Sunday and keep the Sabbath Day holy, because you never know what blessings the Lord has in store. 

Have a great week!
All the best, 
Elder Shipley 

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