Monday, May 30, 2011

Week 4- Belgrano

Hola Todos! Another week has gone by here in Belgrano and we were able to eat McDonalds once in the past week. Yum. Unfortunately our baptismal date that we had for this week is not getting baptized... at least not this week. Nicolas came to church late yesterday and I talked to him after and he was telling me that he feels like the Catholic church is true... I told him that of course he would feel better as he gets closer to God through any church, but that doesn't mean that that specific church has all of the truth. He recommitted to keep reading the Book of Mormon and praying to receive the answer. I hope I helped him understand the importance of our message. He just doesn't understand... Other than that we have a couple future investigators (people that are kind of floating around due to various circumstances that we are hoping to talk to soon) and pretty much no other investigators. Yesterday we were able to schedule an appointment with a part member family where the mom and the 2 youngest children (who are 9 and 11 and were baptized a few months ago) are members. They have 2 young teens and the father who aren't members. The father recently returned because the mother kicked him out a few months ago, so we hope that they are more sensitive to the gospel now and to how the gospel can help them as a family. We have the appointment on Wednesday. Hopefully we can get something going there and help them with their situation. Other than that not much is happening. We did an activity the last week, but only one non member made it and he lives far away. It's tough working with the members here when they all say that they work in the offices of the church, go home, and the only other place they go is the church. Hopefully we can get them to realize that the people that surround them all the time are their brothers and sisters and get them to want to share the gospel with everyone. Anyways, other than that... not really anything else to say. I love you all. Write me next week! Haha. Chau.

Monday, May 23, 2011


So this week was a pretty interesting week... I don't have much time, but I'll try and fit in everything that happened. Exciting things that happened- We visited the Stake President on Monday night and helped him out because his wife is in another province trying to bring home their adopted child and she has been there for 3 months. I think he really appreciated our visit and his apartment is huuuuge!!! He owns a mate (a super popular drink) company. Other things... I did exchanges with the zone leaders for one day.. it went averagely well.... We visited Flia. Krodolfer who is an older couple from Switzerland. He was mission president in Tuscon Arizona and they speak 5/6 languages. They ended up taking us to McDonalds in their car and talking a little bit about the less actives and some ideas that we could do to find more investigators. It was epic. We also had lunch/dinner with Elder and Sister Foster (2nd quorum of the 70), Sunday lunch with Sister Arnold, and we visited the Aidukaitis family to ask for their help with an investigator who was a reference from them. So we basically covered all of our bases. Haha. Anyways, this week when we were talking with Brother Kradolfer we talked about a program that the area presidency has made that the bishop said we don't have anything to do with (when we really do) and what it is is that the relief society, the high priest group, and the Elders quorum are supposed to have 5 families each of less actives/part member families and they are supposed to do a lot of things with them and one step is to invite the families to receive the missionaries. Anyways, nobody would give us even the names of the families and so for that we went to hno. kradolfer because he is the high priest group leader so we wanted to see how we could help him with his assigned families. Anyways, later he talked to us about how maybe we could do a Book of Mormon stand or something in a park. Anyways, a couple days later (Saturday night) I got a call from the zone leaders and they said President Gulbrandsen was worried about us because President Arnold called him saying that his missionaries didn't know about the program and that they were inventing new programs with parks and stuff... haha. So anyways, Pres. Gulbrandsen called me yesterday and he made me explain him the whole program and everything and he was just really confused. Haha. I guess there was a slight confusion in what we talked about with bro. Kradolfer, but President just said, well that just shows you how everyone has their eye on you! Hahaha. Pretty interesting. Anyways, we are still working really hard with our investigators (even though there are very few....) and trying to find new ones! Love you all! Thanks for your support!

Monday, May 16, 2011

1st General email of year 2

So last week I completed a year in the mission! Pretty crazy eh? Yup, I bought ice cream to celebrate. So this past week I realized I left a ton of my stuff in the south... but Elder Aguirre finishes the mission this transfer and he says he is going to bring up all the stuff I left down there. But the worst is that I left my hair buzz/clipper. Narf. Haircuts are way expensive and I don't know if anyone else has a dealy. We'll see. My hair is getting longish. This past week we had a breakthrough here! So during last week we went and visited the Aidukaitis family (my companion had never just passed by before and didn't really want to do it... haha) and we asked for a referral that Sister Aidukaitis had given the missionaries before that they had lost. She gave it to us and recommended we involve someone else in her conversion (because Sister and Elder Aidkaities don't always go to our ward). So we called her niece on Saturday night and had her call the referral and the lady (Marta) came on Sunday! So she went to church and already has a few attendances and is excited to keep coming and we are going to try to schedule a family home evening with the Aidukaitis family or with their niece and her family. Other breakthrough- Then, in the last hour of the meetings on Sunday a younger man walked in and sat down. My companion told me that he had gone a couple times before and so after the meeting I went up and started talking to him. His name is Nicolaus. Then one of our ward missionaries walked into the room and was really surprised to see him. Apparently they are friends since they were 14. He agreed to a discussion right then. So we started off the lesson really well getting to know him a little and also the 2 ward missionaries bore their testimonies and also a recent convert about how the gospel had helped them. We were able to transition smoothly into the lesson and he went from saying ''I'm Catholic'' to (at the end of the lesson) accepting the baptismal invite saying, ''I have to do it.'' He accepted a baptismal date for the 4th of June. The Spirit was really strong during the whole lesson and when we knelt down and prayed at the end of the lesson he prayed very sincerely and asked if what we were sharing with him was true. The Spirit was really strong and when he finished the prayer he turned and hugged me, as if giving thanks. It was a really special lesson and I hope he keeps progressing towards his baptismal date the 4th. Awesome. We also were able to have a few successful interactions with former investigators and contacts so we should have an even better week this week. We are also working with our ward mission leader to be able to start involving the young single adults a little better and to do some activities through the which we will be able to find new investigators. The future is bright! Just gotta keep our heads up. Love you all. Holler at cher boy Elder Trayner next week!

Monday, May 9, 2011


Hola, Well this past week was pretty crazy. I don't really want to retell the whole story cuz I already told the fam on Saturday (when I called for the Mother's day call), but I'll do it quickly. So on Wednesday night I was finishing planning with Elder Mateos, just doin what we do when we got a call from a blocked number. So E Mateos answered and it was President Gulbrandsen! So he asked to talk to me so I picked up and this was a rough outline of how the conversation went- Elder Trayner, we have a situation up here and we're going to need you to come up to be a District Leader in Belgrano. ....oh.... I know that you have a few baptisms planned in the following weeks, but sometimes the Lord works in mysterious ways and we need you up here. oh.. ok... Well we're gonna try to get you on a plane tomorrow up here and your companion is going to be Elder Lemo. Oh.. ok... sounds good. Oh, and just so you know, it is the area where all the general authorities live and they are attentive to your work so... So no pressure or anything right?? Haha, yeah, no pressure or anything.... but I just want you to know that I have a lot of confidence in you. Oh... ok sounds good Well do you have any questions (and he started going off talking about how the Elders of the group after me were doing and I told him I was from the group before with E Hunt, Allen and Smith....) So I spent a lot of the night packing and in the morning hopped in a comvee to Ushuaia, hopped on a plane, and arrived to my area at about 9 at night. Pretty crazy. Anyways, Nate asked me some pretty good questions about the area and stuff so I'll let that conversation explain pretty much everything--- Responses to Nate's questions: So tell us about your new area and your new companion. The area is dead here and has been for awhile. My companion started here 2 transfers ago but his trainer was transferred or something and then a companion came that had back problems and didn't do anything (he's in the offices now) and then my comp was in another area for a long time, then another companion came but he was receiving weird letters from a girl convert and so President switched me and him. Haha. We have one kind of investigator at this point and my companion doesn't really know the members. The University of Belgrano is located inside of our area so there are at least 25 young single adults. We are going to try to make the best use of them in the near future. We also have 3 general authorities (President Arnold, Elder Aidukaitis, and Elder Foster) and their families and an area 70 named Elder Alliaud and his family (I think he has family.. not sure about that one...) Yesterday we had an attendance of about 115-120, but they tell me the normal is about 70-80. It was an incredible change from my branch with the inactive branch president. Haha. We have 2 ward missionaries (girl students because not too long ago there were sisters in this area), and they recently called a ward mission leader who looks to be most excellent. I haven't seen a ward that works so well like this one in all my time here in Argentina. The church actually works how it should! Haha. We also have one returned mission president with his family and I think 2 sets of elderly missionaries that work in the area offices (which are located just outside the area). Any investigators? Like I said, one'ish. It sounded like you are in a powerhouse ward with general authorities- that must be crazy. Do they invite you over? Sometimes we have dinner with them, and if we haven't taught or found new investigators or haven't received referrals in the day I hear it gets ugly. Haha. Especially with Elder Aidukaitis. Are you the only companionship in the ward or are the other missionaries in your district also in that ward? Just us. Those were the questions Nate asked me.... pretty much explain everything by the looks of it. The weather is a lot nicer here... and it is probably one of the richest areas in the mission... being District leader is pretty cool.. The District meeting on Friday (of course the morning after I arrive... haha) went really well and we have some good Elders and Hermanas (sisters). Now we just need to get progressing because there is a lot of room for improvement, but surely we are headed up! Welp. love you all. Let me know if you have any other questions or anything. Until next week!

Monday, May 2, 2011

Tengo hambre

To whom it may concern...? Another week goes by here in the cold. Looks like I'll be here for another 6 weeks. Hopefully we can get things rolling here, cuz I've been pretty frustrated these last 12 weeks. Haha.... On Sunday only one person who has a baptismal date went to church, Monica. Miguel Ahumada was sick and we don't know what is going on with the Ochoa family because we haven't been able to make contact except once in the past week and our member that is helping us, Marcelo, hasn't been able to get in contact with them either. Lame... But we are looking forward to a great transfer now that the other one has gone by. Hmmm... What else... Oh. We went to a funeral of 2 pioneer (for the island) members who were killed last week from another branch. It was really sad, but Elder and Hna. Downs (the couple that came here) tell us that they have been able to get in contact with a lot of less actives of Chacra and El Centro (the other 2 branches) due to the funeral and all the people that went to the viewing and funeral. Oh!!!! Hahahahha!!! I just remembered the epic moment of the week!!! Yes!!! Hahaha. This past week... like... Friday or something... we were with the Ahumada family teaching them and then afterwards we had another appointment far away and we were running late so Miguel offered to drive us in his super ghetto car. So we hopped in and we headed off and he was telling us how he always just drives normal even if the terrain isn't ideal (because the dirt roads here have weird tiny pot hole thingies everywhere) when we went down a road and there was a big body of water.... he accelerated and we entered into the water made it about half way and then we stopped and the motor cut out. So he tries to start it up and it wouldn't start up.... haha.... then my foot started getting cold and my companion reached down to the floor and said, Ah! There's a bunch of water!!! Hahahhaa. Oh no.... So they took off their shoes and socks and rolled up their pants and I just walked out with my boots and the water was suuuper cold and we started pushing the car out. Hahahahaha. We finally got it out and it was really cold after. Then a member came and towed the car with a little rope back to Miguel's house and luckily the next day the car worked so he could go to work. Anyways, that's all I've got this week. Hope you enjoyed. haha. Love you guys. Thanks for everything. Happy mothers day!

Monday, April 25, 2011

I'm hungry right now...

Hey everyone, I'm pretty hungry this morning and it is pretty cold outside. Plus it is raining. Haha. Anyways, I received many excellent emails this past week, thank you all for writing me and keeping me in mind. Oh a couple things I forgot to put in the emails to people... mom or dad, is it possible to send tobasco sauce or some type of delicious spicyness??? If so please do, along with CDs of music and talks or whatever, I need new things to listen to. haha. I am still waiting the Jennie Oaks Baker CD since I left the MTC... Hahaha. Anyways, a few weeks ago I bought boots and they are warm and water proof. This week I need to buy a belt and new socks and new basketball shorts. Just so you know what I am buying. Haha. Welp, this past week was most excellent. We were able to do some pretty crazy things and we are really excited for our future prospects. We ended up teaching all of the lessons this past week with member. A feat I've never heard of. Haha. We taught 22 lessons all with a member present in the lesson. Unfortunately Monica decided not to be baptized last week, but we put a new baptismal date with her for next month. In total we now have 6 baptismal dates and we had 7 investigators in church on Sunday! Woo hoo! We are still trying to boost the attendance of the members, but we didn't have much luck with the long weekend and everyone going camping. We had an attendance of about 65. We are working a lot with a family called the Ahumada family. They are 2 young parents named Miguel and Natalia that we found the other week from an old record that was buried away. Anyways, they are progressing A LOT. They heard the missionaries before like 4 years ago and the last time they had contact was a 1.5-2 years ago. They have 4 little children, but unfortunately they aren't married (who is married here??). They went to church and are starting to do some paperwork to get their birth certificates to be able to get married. Miguel knows that the church is true, but it is taking Natalia a little bit more time, but she is reading and praying every day. Spectacular. Miguel even offered to sleep at a members house and live the law of chastity so that he could get baptized this week, but he realized that isn't the best option and so we are working on the papers with them. We are also working a lot with the Ochoa familiy. Also former investigators with about the same time periods. Unfortunately Miriam (the mom) ¨wasn't feeling well¨ so they didn't go on Sunday, but they (Ricardo, Miriam, and their 8 year old daughter) have a baptismal date for next month as well. We're going to keep working hard with them so they can gain a testimony of the Book of Mormon because in the 1st lesson (I was on splits with a member) I asked (as we were introducing the Book of Mormon and what they have to know if it is true- read, ponder, and pray) if they had prayed if it was true and they said, Honestly, no, I have never prayed about it, and she said the same. So I bore testimony about how I received an answer and how I knew they could receive an answer too and they accepted the challenge. Unfortunately they didn't read either, but they are committed to read before Thursday. They are a really good family. Anyways, those are the baptismal dates that we have now. It made me so happy to see the Ahumada family together in church on Sunday. It is hard to keep the faith when everything is going wrong, but that's what the faith is- keeping your head up and trusting in God even when we do everything right and receive everything wrong. I believe that next month will be an excellent month here in Austral, hopefully I'm still here to see it (there are transfers next Sunday), but I'm pretty sure I will because we just started doing really well and I am training. We'll see what the Lord wants. Anyways, I love you all. Thank you so much for all your love and your letters of support. Keep reading the Book of Mormon and you won't stray from the strait and narrow. Holler at me next week! Keep it real! P.S... I can't remember if I didn't send a general letter of if something went wrong... hahaha... sorry! Love you all!

Monday, April 11, 2011

It's snowing here...

Hello family, friends, and acquaintances, Today it is snowing quite a bit in Rio Grande, Tierra del Fuego, Argentina. Probably going to have to buy more ski socks... haha. Anyways, not much is happening. We have one investigator that is progressing pretty well. Her name is Monica. She went to church for the 3rd time yesterday. The only thing is that she came to Rio Grande 3 weeks ago to start dating an active single member and so she kind of feels pressured to get married and baptized. Haha. All of our other investigators are slower... it's been pretty tough, I don't know what the difference is between how I was working in Buenos Aires and how I am working here, because their must be a difference. Anyways, hopefully we start seeing the fruits of our labors soon. This past week we had zone conference in Ushuaia with their zone too. It went really well and the picture with the mountains is in Ushuaia, the other is the 2 zones together and the last one is our front yard through the window here in Austral this morning with the snow. Anyways, I've been pretty frustrated lately, but I just gotta keep working and eventually we'll see the results. Elder Mateos is doing really well. He is a really good missionary, but he is one of the hardest people I've ever known to get up in the morning... if anyone has any ideas let me know. Haha. That's pretty much it for me here... Nana and Forrest! You'll have to share your experiences with me next week! Congratulations Forrest! I'm so happy for the decision you have made. Also, happy birthday josh (again). Well. Love you all. How's your reading in the scriptures going? Hit me up with some questions next week. Love!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Coldness in the toes of the earth

Hey everyone, Tis I, your beloved child, brother, broskie, lover, and missionary, Elder Trayner. This week was relatively boring, although I did enjoy the general conference thouroughly. My favorite talk was by Elder Robinson about being and doing. Helped me realize a few things I can do to become a better person or being and also how to more effectively help others here in argentina become better people, and more like their Savior and Father in Heaven. Anyways, we had a pretty decent family home evening for the branch on Friday where we watched finding faith in Christ, listened to a few testimonies, and then ate some pizza and stuff. It was a pretty good activity. Hopefully we can keep doing them and getting better attendance each time. Anyways, it continues getting colder, and this past week was freezing.... umm... what else... not many of our investigators made it to the conference, which was super lame, but surely they'll go next week and that we'll be able to find a lot of new investigators this week. Hmm... I don't have much else to say. That is so awesome that Forrest is going to be baptized! Epic. Well.. we keep working hard here and we're hoping to see the results soon, just gotta keep our head up and try to get everyone to feel the love of Savior here, because if they don't feel that, the members are never going to do anything and people could get baptized, but they would just end up like all the converts from the past 2 years- inactive. Out of like 30ish converts in the past 2 years only 3 are active. It's horrible, but a bunch moved too. We're doing our best to get them back and get them over their offense or their laziness or whatever it is that is preventing them from going. Hopefully we'll also be able to have a baptism soon. Surely the Lord will help us do a miracle here if we keep working diligently with faith. Anyways, I love you all and hope you are all doing well. I testify to you that the true happiness is not in the world, but is in Jesus Christ, our Savior. Follow what He has shown and taught and you will find peace in your life. Love you guys. Until next week.

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Train Trayner that's training...

Sup Fam???

I'm super hungry. I only ate a little cereal cuz I ran out. Haha. So the first week of training went pretty well. We got started on Wednesday, but we still had a pretty good week in the end. More about this in the following sections where I respond to questions from Nate and from Mom.

So what are some of the fun things you have been able to do on P-day down there?

Here in Rio Grande? We play soccer behind the church on a cement court sometimes. One time we did an asado (a barbeque) with chicken and chorizo (like bratwursts). Yum. What else... oh. That one time we went to Tolhuin and Lago (lake) Fagnano... that's pretty much it. In my last few weeks in Constitucion we were playing basketball every monday. Ballin. Anyways, our investigators invited us to Tolhuin next Monday so we might do that.

Or are you stuck doing laundry all day?

Nope, we drop our clothes of at the laundromat.

How much are you cooking on your own right now?

Pretty much not... just pday we either cook or buy. Everyone here gives us wayyy to much food, I'm gaining weight.

What do you typically make?

They sell crappy tortillas in some places so cheese quesadillas. Yogurt, pudding, fruit, left overs... haha.

Tell us about your new companion.

Elder Mateos is from Cordoba (b or v..??) Argentina, but he was living in Resistencia, Chaco for the past year because he was a professor in a university. He is an Information Technology professor or something similar. He's pretty smart and he is learning English really fast (even though he says he doesn't speak it at all...haha). He was baptized 2 years ago and he is 24. He is the only member in his family and he got to know the church through a girl he met on facebook, who he ended up dating. Hahaha. The best part is that a year ago he broke up with her and now she is living in Ushuaia (3 hours away, basically the only other city on the island.. hahaha). The rest of his family is catholic and he actually went to the catholic church before getting baptized. He's a baller.

Hopefully you guys are getting along well together.

Like peanut butter and jam baby.

How long are the days there?

They're getting shorter. It gets dark at about 7:30 and the sun comes up at about 7 or 7 30 i think.

How are you coming with your new investigators?

Really good. We finally have found some good new investigators. We had 5 in church on Sunday but 2 of them need divorces. Our other best two- Nancy and her sister Veronica- didn't go because Nancy didn't want to go cuz she was still really upset the the cops came and got mad at her for selling alcohol after hours the night before. Haha. But we talked to her later in the day and she was doing better, but she is still really upset cuz things are tense with her husband (they're not married...) and things aren't getting better. But last night he participated more with us. Hopefully we can turn that around because if not he is supposed to leave in April. Anyways, last night she said she believes that the Book of Mormon is true because it has helped her and she believes that Joseph Smith was a prophet. Now we just need to get the whole marriage or split issue fixed and she'll for sure get baptized. Unfortunately Roman is taking more time but
he'll also be baptized soon. Also we helped an inactive young man who is the only member in his family go on Sunday and his sister was really interested and she went too. They look really good, we just need to keep them going to church and at least that girl from the family will get baptized.

With the branch leadership?

Good. Unfortunately Pres. Nina still hasn't come to church, but the District President says that they are supposedly going to call a new presidency soon. Yup...

Well you all pretty much asked me all the questions that I had anything to say about... I guess I'll share a story from yesterday- A kind of less active brother asked us if we could go with him after
lunch to visit his inactive sister. So we went and she was there and she has a back problem and she was super depressed about her condition and also her spiritual condition and she was crying and I just felt so horrible for her, but I could feel the love that our Heavenly Father has for her and I could really feel that she was my sister. Anyways, we shared about the Atonement and repentance and then she bore her testimony and asked for a blessing. So we gave her the blessing and the Spirit was really strong. Anyways, her brother is going to pick her up next week to go to conference and another brother that was with us is going to try and find a wheelchair.

Well, love you all. Hope you are all doing well. If not, read the scriptures and get down on your knees to pray. Thanks for all your support!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Another transfer gone by...

Well another transfer just went by. I don't know how it went by so fast. So crazy. It was pretty hard, but I feel like I'm learning and it has been great being with Elder Hunt. He is definitely a good friend of mine and an excellent missionary. Unfortunately our companionship couldn't last forever and he boarded an airplane for Buenos Aires this morning! He is going back to the area next to his last area... and I am going to train!!! Hahaha. Crazy right? Didn't even expect that. Yup. My companion arrives here on Wednesday morning. His name is Elder Mateu (Mah teh oo). I don't know if he is latino or american, but I guess I'll find out soon enough! Haha. It's gonna be great and I'm sure I'm going to learn a lot. I've always liked the idea of training. Anyways, I'll try and share a couple quick stories from this past week and update a couple things. 1. Roman Roman should be getting baptized this week, but it has been almost impossible to meet with him, but he is definitely getting baptized in the next couple weeks. 2. Nancy Nancy is our new best investigator. She was a reference from a less active (pretty much inactive) brother that we are trying to help to come back. Anyways we went and setup an appointment for another day when her husband would be home and then we went and it turned out the her husband didn't really have much interest, but her younger sister was there so those 2 wanted to listen to us and the 2 husbands were kind of in and out of the lesson. Anyways, they had a lot of interest and a lot of questions and we had all the answers and they kept asking questions about the plan of salvation and we had to promise it for next time because we didn't have time to do it then. Anyways, they accepted all of the invitations (read, pray, be baptized) and then we invited them to church, but they didn't want to go. I told them if they didn't go that they would never know if we represented the only true church like we know we are, they realized it was true and commited. Anyways, it ended up that only Nancy went on Sunday and only for a bit, but she liked it even though she was confused about some of the doctrine of one of the speakers, but we assured her it was his doctrine and not ours. Haha.... Good ole branches.... Anyways, we met with the sister and her in the afternoon yesterday and the sister was pretty upset she couldn't go and even made us a cake for our birthdays (E. Hunt's was yesterday) and Nancy and her husband gave us small gifts (a pen and a keychain of leather). Epic. The husband is starting to open up to us and everything and both Nancy and her sister have offered awesome prayers from their knees at the end of lessons. Awesome. They're for sure baptisms this transfer. 3. Finding out E. Hunt was leaving with Flia. Alvarez So last night we were at a less active family's house that we are working hard with and they gave us dinner and a cake (we ate a total of 5 I think... ridiculous) and afterwards we were sharing with them and the spirit was really strong and I really felt for them as a family and I bore my testimony of how my eternal family is the greatest hope I have in my life and it is what gives me purpose and meaning to my life and I got all emotional and ended up crying telling them how I wanted them to be an eternal family and prepare to enter into the temple for the 2nd time on the mish (the other time I was testifying of the same thing to Flia. Robledo). I really felt the truth of what I was saying and l know they felt it really strongly and Elder Hunt ended up emotional and it was all kinds of ridiculous and then our member starting testifying (kind of....) and my phone started ringing, so I looked at it and it said Asistente (assistant to president)!!! I had totally forgotten about transfers and I was like... what...??? So I stepped into the hallway and answered it and it was Elder Jones again and he asked me if I was obedient and then said that the Lord must trust in me a lot and that he had called me as a trainer!! Crazy. All I thought is... crappp.... Elder Hunt is leaving... and I said sweet or whatever and I went back in and everyone just kind of stared at me and then I said I had something to say and said that Elder Hunt was going to be leaving. So he said his final words and we were all looking a mess (except the dad, he held through) and it was just a great lesson with them. They better return to church and make it to the temple. Anyways, hope you are all doing well. I'm gonna miss Elder Hunt, but I am sure going to learn a lot training... Crazy. I love you all a lot. This transfer will be an excellent transfer and Austral will grow! It has to becauset his past week we only had 40 people in the church. Ridiculous, but the Lord will help our righteous desire. I love you guys! Thanks for supporting me!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Greetings everyone, This week was a decent week. At first it looked like it was going to be horrible, but we hung in and ended up finding some really good investigators. The weather also decided to take a downward turn and now it is pretty cold, but at least the wind is supposed to let up a little as the temperature goes down. Anyways, there are transfers next week, but I really doubt anything happens with us here. We're still trying to get the area going, but looks like we'll have to keep going step by step. Anyways, I am writing today because on Monday the offices made me go to el centro (downtown) to look for an apartment with the zone leader here for a senior couple of missionaries that is going to be living here. They come on Thursday, but supposedly they don't speak spanish... haha. Should be interesting. But we ended up finding 2 good apartments. Also, we had two really good experiences, but I'll put them in the following answers to the questions Josh asked me. What miracle happened in your area this week? This past week we were finally able to meet with a 17 year old named Roman who has been going to church every week for the past 6 months and is more active than his member girlfriend. Haha. We had already taught him a couple times, but it is difficult to find time to teach him because he works and studies and his family doesn't really support him because they go to another church. Anyways, Sunday after church we pulled him aside and had a lesson. In the lesson we talked about recognizing an answer from God through the Spirit and it was a really good lesson, at the end we talked a little about baptism and challenged him to be baptized and he accepted. Then I said that we were preparing a baptismal service for the 26th of March and he said he didn't think he'd be prepared, but we reassured him and bore testimony and also our member that was there bore his testimony and then Roman accepted. He has never accepted a baptismal invitation before So we should have a baptism next week. The first one in a long time here. The other epicness happened on Sunday night when we found a former investigator who is 18 and his whole family. The kid told us how he was going to get baptized and how he had read and prayed about the book of mormon and everything, but then his friend got baptized and the missionaries got transferred and then they said the missionaries had never passed by again! Anyways, the dad then told us how he is looking at all the churches, trying to find the true one! And the wife said she was in some new catholic church??? but that she was willing to follow her husband in his persuit for the true church. Then at the end of the lesson another former investigator that has gone to church many times showed up and we talked with him a bit and he gave the last prayer. Epic! It was really good. Tell us more about your trip to the lake last week Uhhh... it was a really big lake. The members drove us and made us chorizos (sausages) which we made into delicious sandwiches and then we walked around for a while, made that sign, and then went to a little touristy town to catch a ride back to Rio Grande. We didn't really do anything, but it was sweet looking (as you can tell from the pictures). Lake Fagnano. What is the climate like? It has gotten a lot colder lately. I asked what type of climate it is and they told me it is a tundra here. Haha. It is really windy all the time (memories of Aruba...) but the wind is cold. Haha. Supposedly as it gets colder the wind gets weaker. Tell us about a spiritual experience you had either teaching someone or during your personal/companionship study Yesterday we were teaching new investigators and I felt the spirit testify really strongly as I testified about how the gospel has blessed my family and also they didn't want to go to church but I felt I had to say that our message was really important, about how God really has called a prophet like he has always done before and that they would never know without going to the church and they said, I guess you're right, yeah I'll go if my sister goes and Fede (and then they all agreed to go). So we made plans to go on Sunday and everything and setup a follow up appt on Friday. That was really good. Anyways, keep hitting me up with questions if you want me to write long like this. Haha. I love you guys! I know the gospel has been restored in these days and that we have a living prophet and that the authority and power of God is on the earth! I am so grateful for knowing these things and for knowing that God loves us enough now to have called a prophet and to continually give us guidance through him. I really have received so much happiness and hope from the Gospel and I know it really is the only way to find the true happiness. I know the real happiness is in the Gospel and that it can't be found in the world. Thank you for all helping me to get here (the mission). You all have really made a huge difference in my life. I should probably write a few people that made a big difference in helping me get here. If someone at home sees Cody Haycock tell him thanks and that even though he doesn't know it, he is a big reason I am here and as well for Brother Mayfield. Tell Bishop Nelson thanks too and I'll have to write my seminary teachers. Mom and Dad- you guys are the best! Thanks for sticking with me through everything and teaching me what is right! You guys are the best! Thanks Nate and Josh for being great examples and setting the standard and thanks Rach and Nicole for raising me to be who I am. You all are the best. Anyways, this letter is way too long and I am super hungry. Love you all! Keep safe! Mom, do you forward these emails to my friends every week? Just wondering because I've never known... Haha. Let me know.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Adventures with Penguins

Hello everyone!

This week I ate blood sausage! Hahaha. Disgusting, super mushy. It's like meat pudding and it doesn't even taste good. A member is a chef and he made it for us. The other meats were waayyy better. Yup. Also, I think all the pictures I attached are from yesterday when we went to Lake Fagnano, one of the world's largest lakes. I didn't write yesterday cuz it was a holiday here and all the internet places were closed. Anyways, it was a super adventure to go to the lake
which is a little over an hour away from Rio Grande in the middle of the island close to a tiny city called Tolhuin. Anyways, it was super epic and fun. Anyways, there weren't as many people in church this week and we only had a few investigators so that was pretty rough, but we gotta keep our heads up and our shoulder to the wheel! Anyways, I don't have much else to say and I have to finish up cuz elder hunt already finished. Love you all! Keep safe!

Monday, February 28, 2011

Austral and a Big River


This week was an interesting week. We had another super decent
attendance in church this week. We had 81 people in Sacrament meeting
and 4 were investigators. Little by little right? Yup. They tell us
it is a lot better attendance than the last 2 months, probably because
vacation time is ending, but I like to think maybe we had a little to
do with it. Haha. This week they reorganized the elders quorum and
so now we have an active elders quorum president and they announed
that our 1st counselor in the branch presidency was now authorized to
do interviews and things and that hopefully we'll have a new president
sometime soon... haha. Interesting. Anyways, still getting used to
the area and we were able to find 10 new investigators last week, but
only 2 of them were really good, but unfortunately they called him
last minute to work sunday morning and so they didn't come, but they
should come next week. We just gotta start the snowball rolling here
and then we'll be rollin with it. Anyways, pretty sure I'm getting
fatter here cuz everyone just eats all the time cuz there isn't
anything else to do so they are constantly giving us food and there is
more money here (even though it doesn't look like it... haha).

OH! Epicness!! I almost forgot to put this!!!! Gosh... Last week
Elder Hunt and I passed by the beach to see it and we found a
penguin!!! Yup! Touched a little penguin!!!! Hahaha! Epic. Best
thing ever. I guess it is really rare to see them over here too.
Gosh. It was so funny. Yup. We had to touch it cuz he was just
snoozin and I think he enjoyed it and he stood up a couple times for
us too. We were so disappointed we didn't bring our cameras.
Anyways, I guess I should throw out that we are helping a lot of
people build their houses here. Funny. Well. Love you all! Keep
safe and read the Book of Mormon! Holler! (more pictures follow in
the forward from Elder Hunt)

Monday, February 21, 2011


Hey everyone,

This week Nate asked me a bunch of questions that explain the area
better so I'm gonna put them here with my answers. Enjoy.

it was saying that it has a similar climate to Alaska?
I've never been to Alaska, but I would guess that it is pretty
similar. It hardly snows here in Rio Grande, and it is super windy in
summer... pretty cold... yup.

What in the world?

Do you have a car to get around the island or are you pretty much just
working in Rio Grande and getting around on foot?
We're just in one little part in Rio Grande. I hear you can look up
the street Keninek on Google, it's the street we live on and the
building that the church rents out for the church is also on it. It's
really different here because most of the members have cars, but we
basically just walk around on streets of little rocks all the time and
get blown around by the wind. Haha.

What's the inside of that house you are living in like?
Pretty decent. Unfortunately the plumbing sucks so we have to throw
our used toilet paper in a bag. Laaaame. We have two heaters and it
is hard to balance the temperature. Haha.

Any differences in the food in that area?
No, because hardly anyone was born here. They're all from the north
of Argentina, so they talk a little bit different than the people in
Capital, but that's because they talk different than everyone else,
and I am pretty used to hearing just about every accent.

By the way, how is your Spanish?
Feeling pretty fluent at this point?
Pretty much, at least in normal conversation. You start asking me
about car parts or something weird and I'm still learning those.
Every once in a while I don't have a word, but I can get around it
easily now.... yup.

Anyways, this week was pretty decent. We're still trying to get the
work rolling here. We received over 30 names from members of people
who we could share with, so hopefully this week we can start teaching
all these people. This week President Gulbrandsen came and we had
interviews and a little zone meeting (it's interesting because our
Zone and District are the same thing... 6 Elders. Haha.) It was
really good. Then I guess he went on Saturday and visited some
members and they really appreciated that. Then he came to our
sacrament meeting on Sunday and talked about the Sacrament and how we
need to keep going to church even if another member offends us (seems
to be a pretty big problem here...), it was really good and one of the
less active members that we helped to come was crying and he really
enjoyed it so it was really good. We also had an attendance of 77
which is pretty decent. Our goal is to get over 100 consistently and
then there will be a reason to build a church here, because right now
the church rents an old supermarket... haha. Anyways, President gave
us permission on Friday night to visit our inactive branch president
after 9 and we went and it was a really good talk and everything and
he committed to go on Sunday, but unfortunately he didn't go. In my
interview President first asked me who should be the new president and
then told me to start praying to know who should be the new
president.....!!! I was like... What??? Haha. But yeah, hopefully
everything gets settled soon. Also, we were looking through the
records and discovered there were 3 baptisms here last year. Haha.
So we are looking forward to getting the missionary work rollin here
again. A little over a year ago an Elder had over 20 baptisms and so
we know it is possible. A lot of the members have lost hope, but we
are trying to raise their faith so they can try to share with the
people they know again. Oh crap.... I think I'm gaining weight
here.... Hahaha..... lame. Oh well, what are ya gonna do. At least I
might start fitting in my clothes again. Haha. Anyways, things are
good and we're looking forward to making them better. Thanks for all
your support! I love you guys! Let me know if you have any

Monday, February 14, 2011

Tierra del Fuego

Hey everyone,

This week was insane. So I called all my converts and stuff on Monday
and said bye, and then at 1 the office elders called and said I
wouldn't be able to leave til wednesday because they had a problem
with my ticket. Anyways, it was weird still being in my area, but I
was thankful for being able to see and say bye in person to almost all
my converts. Then on Wednesday I had to wake up at 4 20 AM and rolled
out to the airport at 5. Then I flew to the middle of nowhere for 2
hours ish (Trelew in Chubut) and had to sit in an empty tiny airport
for over 9 hours. Then I was feeling sick and super thirsty. It was
horrible. Then I got down here(Ushuaia) in 2 hours and slept with
the Elders there. Then Thursday morning I left in a big beefy van to
Rio Grande (where I am now). It took like 3 hours to drive here.
Anyways, I arrived at the church for a meeting and left my bags just
inside the doors and everyone came out to greet me. It was pretty
crazy. Elder Hunt is a baller. Official. Then we went to our
apartment and saw all the notes the old elders left... Unfortunately
there aren't any maps of our area. A map doesn't exist. Hahahahaha.
Awesome. So anyways, we called a member and he drove us around to
members almost all day (something super weird for me because like 3
members in Buenos Aires had a car). And we went through the days with
members learning the area and we are doing pretty well with it now.
Unfortunately I was moderately sick, but I'm almost all the way back
to full health now. The members here are super helpful and nice.
People build their own makeshift houses, but the insides of the houses
are nice. A lot more technology here. Anyways, this week we are
excited to put the shoulder to the wheel and get the members working
hard so we can have success here in the coming weeks. They left us
with about 2 investigators so we are about starting from scratch, but
there was an Elder here a little over a year ago who had over 20
baptisms, so there is potential, we just have to get everyone working
together. Anyways, I don't have too much time left so I better just
leave it at this point until next week. I'm gonna attach a couple
pictures. The mountains are in Ushaia, Rio Grande is flat and
desertyish. The house is ours. Haha. Well, love all of you! Lend a
hand to someone this week! Haha. :)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Transfers... and the pictures from the baptism

Hola todos,

Well. The time has come. Haha. I'm still in Constitución.... Until
Wednesday. Hahaha. I got transferred to the south! Yup. Anyways,
they had problems with my flight so I don't leave til Wednesday. It
is going to be horrible. Wednesday morning I have to be at the
airport at 4 30. Yikes. Then I have like a 2 hour flight and an 8
HOUR LAYOVER. Yup. By myself. Gonna be psycho. Anyways, then I
have another 2 or 3 hour flight. Ave maria o como los mexicanos aye
caramba! Anyways. This is how I found out. So yesterday we went to
the farewell of the missionaries that were leaving in the mission
offices then we left and hopped on the train when we get a call from
the assistants. My comp answers and they ask him to pass the phone to
me. So he passes me the phone and the assistant says, Elder Trayner,
are you 100% obedient to the missionary handbook (this is all
translated)? I said yeah. He said, good, because the Lord has called
you to be senior companion in Austral, in the south. Your companion
will be Elder Hunt!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Hahahhaha!!!!
I couldn't believe it!!! My MTC comp, Elder Hunt, is going to be my
comp down there! So crazy. Love the guy. Anyways, he then explained
the area. He said the whole south of the mission has been dead
lately, especially Austral. So they whitewashed (took out both the
missionaries that were there) and are putting me and Elder Hunt in.
They said a year ago one of the other assistants baptized 10 weeks in
a row and the assistance in sacrament meeting was about 100-110. He
said nothing really happened since then and now they have an
assistance of about 50-60. So President wants us to get it back to
how it used to be. So it could be pretty rough at first, but I'm way
excited to work with Elder Hunt and it should be a good ward. Crazy
right??? Anyways, so I'm still here til Wednesday and tomorrow we'll
be a trio for a day. haha. Funny stuff.

Anyways, I'm really excited to work and to have another area and I'M
GOING TO THE SOUTH! Haha. Pretty crazy. Yup. Well, hopefully I can
get any packages that are here before I go... Haha. Well. Love you
guys! Talk to you next week from the cold and wind! Keep safe! The
gospel is true!

Monday, January 31, 2011

The Baptisms of Gaston and Nicole!!

Hello everyone,

Another fantastic week goes by here in Constituciòn, hopefully this
week isn`t the last because there are transfers next week. We'll see
what happens, everyone is telling me that I'm gonna leave. Haha.
Anyways, this week we had 2 baptisms, but I forgot my camera so
hopefully I remember next week. We had the baptism of Gaston Miranda
(the 9 year old stud who recently moved here) and the baptism of
Nicole Caimi (the 81 year old woman). Everything went really well and
we had good participation from the ward. We are hoping for the
baptism of at least the dad of Flia. Medrano, the others are being
frustrating and the dad ended up coming to our ward alone yesterday.
Annoying.... It's been getting harder to trust people when they say
they are going to do something. Anyways, that's the news here for
this week. Hopefully I don't get transferred next week, but we'll see
what happens.

Back at home I hear Bailey almost died!! That's horrible, but we
can't lie, the dog is a fighter. Thank goodness she should be ok.
Well... not much else this week. Let me know if there is anything you
want to know! Love you guys! Keep safe!!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The Baptism of Yarine Cordova

Hola todos,

Hey so I didn't remember if I ever sent the pictures from the baptism
of Herminia so I sent one of those too. Anyways, everything went well
with the baptism of Yarine (shah ree nay). She ended up asking me to
baptize and confirm her and it was a smaller service, but it was kind
of sad too because it was like the farewell for the bishop's family
who were good friends with all of us. Anyways, we are excited to work
with the new bishopric and they are all really dedicated and willing
to work hard, so we are really excited. They even called a ward
mission leader!!!! Hahaha. Epic. A young man named Gonzalo just
started his mission papers and he was just called on Sunday. We are
excited, especially me because I've never had one. Haha. The stake
is also really excited and just implemented a new plan. If the wards
cooperate and do what they ask, I think there will be a lot more
success this year. It's just kinda tough to get everyone to work
together and to commit. Oh well.

Anyways, this week we have 2 baptisms. Nicole Caimi, an 81 year old
lady who lived in the U.S. and Venezuela and has lots of interesting
stories, and Gaston Miranda, a 9 year old stud that recently moved
into the ward whose dad is pretty inactive (but he came to church
yesterday!!!). Love it.

Did I tell you guys about the girl that walked into the church last
Monday morning? Anyways... On pday last week we went to play bball in
the morning (which we never do) and it just so happened the a 18 year
old girl was just inside the door talking to a member of our ward and
saying how she had a mormon buddy in Mexico and how she was really
interested. Yup. Her name is Rosio and she came to church on
yesterday. We are excited to work with her and it's funny because she
lives right above Carla (who we baptized like 2 ish months ago that
lives in the building where we used to live??). Epic. Well. Until
next week. I love you guys!! Keep safe and sisters- you better catch
me next week! Haha.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Hola de Constitución

Hello everyone,

Elder Trayner here, writing from Buenos Aires. Hope everyone is doing
well, and from what I hear everyone is doing well. This week was
another good week here. This week we have a kind of interesting
baptism. Yarine Cordova is going to be baptized because somehow her
membership record got lost and there aren't witnesses. Then the
following week we have at least 2 more and we are hoping for 7. On
the 27th we have the baptisms of Nicole Caimi (a really old lady who
has had a really rough life, but feels really happy with the church),
Gaston Miranda (the 9 year old who just moved here a couple months
ago), and we are also working really hard so that the Medrano family
(with the 2 young twin girls) can get baptized. They just struggle to
understand and they don't trust in what they know they have felt. It
is kind of frustrating, but we are expecting them to be able to be
baptized the 29th as well. These are our baptismal prospects at this

Ok. So my whole mission just changed yesterday... They released
Bishop Villalba!! He is leaving to live in his other house in Azeiza
(where the temple is here). Now we have Bishop Casariego who was the
counselor. So crazy. I can't believe him and his wife are leaving.
We are going to miss them a lot. Also, a returned missionary who did
an epic job as the young men's president, Fabian Cardozo is leaving.
Lame. But we are working hard with a lot of people and the Lord is
blessing us to meet people that are really prepared and also people
that are members that fell away a long time ago. We are trying to
bring them back, but as it explains in the Book of Mormon, once they
have had the light and rejected it once, it is really hard to bring
them back, but we are trying really hard, but we understand it is up
to them to make their own decision. It is really hard to see when
people realize what they are missing out on and how they don't have
the happiness that they need in their family and then they don't come
to church to be able to change their lives. So dumb. It happened
this week with a few people. We went to some former investigators and
they told us how they were even worse off now than they were before
and how they realized they needed to find the help of God, and how
they had seen how the Gospel and our church helps people change, but
none of them came. Also, we found a man the other week who has 8 kids
and he isn't happy and he told us he really wanted to go and he didn't
come. And the worst was the dad of Gaston Miranda (the 9 year old who
is gonna get baptized the 29th) didn't come. It is so frustrating
sometimes. I just want the people to just fulfill what they say and
finally change their lives, but in the end it is their choice. Lame.
But I understand we are doing a good job here and the ward really has
changed, and that makes me really happy. I hope that this year can be
a year even better and I know that the Lord called our new bishop and
it must be for some reason, so we are excited to get working with him
and the new bishopric now.

Anyways, I just want to invite you guys to change the things that you
know that you need to change right now. Don't put it off, because it
will never happen. That is something I have learned here. I have
also learned the importance of being true to your word. I am so happy
for the opportunity I have to be here in the mission and I really have
seen a lot of miracles that the Lord has performed here in the ward
and this area. It's tough when there are changes, but I know the Lord
is looking over us and He always has His hand in our lives, even when
we don't realize it. Anyways, I want you all to know that I know the
Book of Mormon is true, and that by reading the book, by pondering
what it says, and by praying to God we can all know it is true. I
know that Joseph Smith was a prophet chosen by the Lord to restore His
church on the earth. I am so greatful to know this church and to be a
part of it, and it really has changed my life. I hope we can all
recognize the influence of the Lord in our lives and see how much He
really does bless us. I love all of you guys and I want you to know
that each one of you has changed my life, and for the better. I have
learned something special from each one of you. I love you all.
Don't forget that it is us who leave the Lord, not the Lord who leaves
us. Keep safe and look forward to hearing from you all next week!

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Baptism of Herminia Alicia Martinez!!

Dear Everyone,

This week was a most excellent week. This last week we had the
priviledge of baptizing Herminia Martinez, the mother of a less active
who came here from Mendoza to be baptized. It was awesome, and she
was so grateful for us and for the members and her family. It was
awesome to see how the family has become so much more active and
excited in the past 2 weeks. Anyways, this week we got word from the
mission that Yarine Cordova (remember my first converts??) doesn't
have a membership record, so we are likely to have to baptize her this
week because there aren't any witnesses or anything from her baptism
10 years ago in Bolivia. It's gonna be pretty weird, but oh well.
Also, we found a new family who moved here not too long ago that was
going to another chapel and their 9 year old son wants to be baptized
and so the Elders of San Cristobal said they would baptize him... The
Elders over there have made such a fiasco for us. Anyways, they are
excited to start coming to our ward and we are going to talk with
their son on Wednesday, so he should be baptized soon. We are still
working with the flia. Medrano, but they are being really slow and the
women of the family won't accept our commitments other than reading so
it's been kinda tough... Yup. Anyways. I love you all, thank you
for all returning to writing me this past week. Haha. Keep safe and
I'll try to send the photos in a separate email if I can. Love!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Is anybody out there?

Greetings all,

This week it seems my words will be limited because I have no emails
to respond to (other than the fabulous pictures that Megan sent...).
Don't worry, I still love you all, but c'mon... haha.

Anyways, this week went really well. We ended up having 7 people in
church and we were able to get two inactive families who have never
come to our ward to come too. The ward was really happy and Elder
Mohulamu is really excited because he sees how much the ward helps us
now. Well last week we were hoping to go and fill out papers so one
of our investigators could get married, but they ended up not having
argentine documents so we have to wait until they have those... so it
is going to be a while and I think it cooled their excitement some
because they didn't come to church... :( But we commited another
couple to do the papers when they receive their argentine documents
next month (so they will get married a month from then) so that was
neat... then we had 5 from flia. Medrano which is the family with the
two twin girls who are really confused about getting baptized because
the other elders told them that they really shouldn't get baptized
here. Anyways, their whole family came for the first time with all of
them (3 kids and both the parents) so that was neat too. They liked
it a lot. Then we also had Hna. (sister) Moron, who is the mother of
an inactive who came to church with her as well. She is getting
baptized on Saturday because she had all the teachings and everything
in Mendoza Argentina. She really is a blessing from the Lord. So
those people are pretty much our main investigators right now. We
were disappointed because we taught 6 family members (cousins and a
brother and his wife) of a sister in our ward and none of them came to
church. That was pretty rough, but we are going to keep trying to
work with them this week and with a lot of praying and insisting they
are sure to show up. Haha.

Yup. Well hope you all had a very happy new year, looks like you all
partied too hard to write me. Haha. We had to be back in our
apartments at 9 on new years eve, but we still heard lots of
fireworks. Uh... Elder Mohulamu and I get along really well and oh!
Haha. We did the Haka at the ward new years party. That was pretty
sweet. I'll try to attach my holiday pics and a video of the haka in
a separate email because I know some of you can't receive attachments.
Well love ya all. Make sure you write me next week or in the next 15
minutes! Happy new year!