Monday, March 28, 2016

The Weeks Fly By

The weeks fly by.

They told us in the MTC that the days feel like weeks and the weeks like days. At the beginning, I won't lie, I didn't necessarily believe it. But as the time has gone by, I've come to realize that it's very true. The time flies by. There really is so much to do, and so little time to do it. But things have been going very well.

Gabriela was confirmed yesterday, which was a great experience. She told us that during the confirmation, she felt like it wasn't our hands that were on top of her head. She felt as though it were someone else. She couldn't explain exactly how she felt, but she knew that it was something special. Very cool.

Also, this last week, we had an appointment with Lili, and at the end, we were pretty worried that we were losing her. Fortunately, at our next appointment, she told us that there really isn't a reason for her not to get baptized. She said her sister says that she is weird just like the Mormons so she was basically born to be Mormon. She is so close to accepting to be baptized. Please keep her in your prayers. She is awesome, and we hope she will commit to be baptized this month.

What a crazy week. It's always crazy to be working in Spain during Semana Santa (Holy Week). During the week, a lot of people come out and march in processions. It usually slows down the work. However, we are actually seeing a good amount of success. This week we are going to work even harder. The work is growing. I feel like we are going to see a few more baptisms in these upcoming weeks. We have a number of investigators that are progressing, but we are just working to help them overcome a few doubts.

I love being a missionary. It's the best thing that anyone could do. I would recommend it to everyone. So if you are not currently a missionary, share a little bit of the Easter spirit, see the Hallelujah video, and give some food to the missionaries. I can promise you they will appreciate it.

Thanks so much for all your support. I love you all.

It's a great day to be a missionary.
Elder Weenig

Monday, March 21, 2016

Gabriela's Baptism

We just got back from the Alhambra. It's my second time and even still, I feel like we barely saw anything of it. I love Granada. It's such a cool culture. A perfect mix of ancient and modern. I wouldn't mind coming back to study after the mission.

Anyway, the major event of the week is the title of the email. Gabriela was baptized! Such a great experience. She told us that she has been thinking about going on a mission, because of Jhizel's influence. So awesome. During the baptism they were sitting together, and I couldn't help but think of two missionaries. It will be such a good day when they finally go on a mission. So cool.  Jhizel is also now the president of the institute class that we have here. We were meeting with Gabriela the day before her baptism. We asked her how she was doing, and noticed that she had cut her hair. When we commented about it, she laughed and said, "Of course! I'm starting a new life tomorrow, I might as well look my best." What an incredible experience. She has changed so much. A night and day difference. I feel so lucky to have been a part of her story. The best part about this is that it's only the beginning. There is still so much to see -- when they go to the temple, when they leave on missions, and when they get sealed in the temple. I may live on the other side of the Atlantic, but I am going to try and be there for as much as I can.

I love this so much. I love being a part of this work. It really is so amazing. Seeing people change their lives completely. The first person that it has changed would be me.

What a great day to be a missionary!

Elder Weenig

Gabriela's Baptism with Elder Ylimaulo

Jhizel, Gabriela, Me and Elder Ylimaulo
The Alhambra

Monday, March 14, 2016

Sunday Blessings

I think that the weeks go faster and faster. This last week was amazing. Really, really amazing.

Gabriela is getting baptized on Sunday! Great experience. We were talking with Jhizel, who said that Gabriela was just waiting for the right moment (aka the 27 of March), and that she wasn't entirely sure why. So we decided that there really isn't a reason to wait, and we spoke with Gabriela about it after Gospel Principles class. She was hesitant at first, but when we proposed the idea, she agreed. So know it's the week of baptismal preparation (getting the clothes, inviting everyone, and making sure that she passes her baptismal interview).  I love baptisms. We have a lot of work to do, but we are excited for this Sunday.

Apart from that, we had a less active member that consistently commits to coming to church. But the day comes, the sacrament meeting starts, and she is never there. Up until yesterday. She had spoken with us throughout the week and seemed more confident than ever that she was coming to church. Although, we didn't really believe her (from experience) we were still praying for that miracle and it came. Sunday rolled around, and much to our surprise so did this member. It was one of those moments where you don't really know what to do so you just shake their hand and say "Hola". So cool. She has the goal to go to the temple this year and our goal with her is to get her there.

Although there was a lot of success yesterday, there was also a moment of sadness as well. Lili, who had been progressing so much, decided yesterday that she didn't want to keep coming to church. It kills us, because the night before she had told us that the only thing that was keeping her from being baptized was the Relief Society (very long story). But, we have set an appointment for this Friday, so please keep her in your prayers so that she still comes to church.

Update on Jose Juan and Sandra. Sandra left for Chile this last week and was Jose's main support system. He is still not sure about baptism. He definitely wants to wait till Sandra gets back in July to make the decision, so keep him in your prayers. 

In other, slightly less spiritual news, we have a new car! There wasn't really anything wrong with the last one other than the dents and scrapes that come from being a missionary car, but we have received the new Opel Corsa (German model.) It's fantastic. The stereo system is much better which allows for much more EFY sing-a-longs in the car.

We are excited for this next week. We are going to go help out with a District leader training meeting in Malaga this Thursday, and have a lot of people progressing. I wish I could tell you about each one individually, but the time is short and I'd really like to share how much I really love being out here. Missionary life is crazy, hectic, and stressful at times, but is also the best time of my life. I love getting to see people progress, to care about people so much that it hurts you when they say no, I love watching the change that really happens in people. It's something real. I have seen it. Just to highlight one, Jhizel. I know I've already mentioned it, but she has a legitimate plan to go on a mission, and for the first time in her life, is saving money to be able to go. That's what makes it a great day to be a missionary.

Elder Weenig

Sandra's farewell party, (we were mid transfer so the missionary
sitting next to me was with us for a little while)

Tuesday, March 8, 2016


I really feel like we just emailed. It's crazy how quickly the weeks go by. The big news for the week: transfers came....And I am staying in Granada. I am very happy. There are going to be a number of miracles this upcoming transfer. I'm especially grateful because this is an unusual amount of time in an area. Usually, the max is four transfers, and when I leave, it will be close to five. I'm really glad to stay.

There are two really cool miracles that I would like to share this last week. Gabriela, the girl who is preparing for baptism, originally had offered the sister missionaries cigarettes at the baptism of Jhizel. So, naturally, we were worried about how teaching Word of Wisdom would go. Fortunately, when we taught it, she instantly agreed to everything and was completely willing to obey the commandment. That's a response that we don't get too often. Usually, we hear a few objections to tea and coffee, (people generally accept that tobacco and drugs are bad for you) but she was completely willing. Fantastic. We are really excited for her. She set the goal to be baptized on the 27th of March, which is also Easter, which I think would be he best way to remember a baptism. The celebration of the resurrection of Christ coupled with the beginning of a new life. Perfect.

The second miracle comes from Lili. She tells us every week that she has so many doubts and is very unsure about the church. But when the other missionaries were saying goodbye to the members at church, she came up to me and asked, "You're not leaving as well, are you?" When I told her that no, I wasn't, she got a very relieved looked on her face. She smiled for a second then said, "Good, because you have to baptize me." Both Elder Ylimaula and I were shocked. Up until this point she had made no notion that she intended on being baptized anytime in the near future (if at all). But her comment showed that she wasn't just thinking about being baptized, she has been planning out he possibilities. Please pray for her. We are hoping and praying every day that she is able to get her answer so that she can be baptized. She would be a strong member.

I want you all to know that I am so grateful for the time that I have here. I am starting to realize how short the time is that I have left, and I want to make the most of it. I love being a missionary. I would recommend it to anyone. It makes you so happy. When you aren't happy, it's because you are too focused on yourself. It's the perfect way to live. I genuinely wish that I could stay here for another two years. Regardless of the amount of time, I have a goal to make everyday a great day to be a missionary.

Elder Weenig

The Granada Zone
You might recognize some of these guys. They are all my companions
still in the mission (Right to left, Elders Gantner and Fife from
Fuengirola, me, Elder Holman from La Linea, Elders Black and Ylimaula
from Granada)

Eating at a Wok after residency