Monday, August 6, 2012

Hello dear ones –
 I am so deeply pleased to hear that you are all doing well and that it has been a great week for you.  What fun adventures you are all having!! This week was in all complete honesty, one of the craziest weeks of my mission, possibly even my whole life. The Family Peñalva did it! They all got baptized!! I am so incredibly happy for them. They are converted, they are in this. They are so happy and it was really an amazing experience.  Juan Cruz, the boyfriend of the daughter Victoria also was baptized. We were not sure about him… but man, this weekend he just turned it around and felt it was the right thing to do in his life.  He wore the suit that Elder Connolly gave him this weekend to church for his confirmation. He wants so badly to be missionary. We also did 4 baptism interviews. The zone reached the goal and baptized 14 people this week. I am so happy for Elder Connolly, it literally was the most perfect ending for a missionary that you could ask him. I don´t know how I am going to pull a repeat when my name is called and it’s time to go home.

Penalva Family Baptism
 This week has also been one of the most humbling weeks. Thursday was the day that we finally set the date for Friday for sure for the Peñalva family to be baptized and finished all the interviews. That night after I got done doing the calls with the district meeting, I received a call from President and he has asked if I would be his Assistant with three other Elders. It honestly shocked me. I did not sleep well that night. The next morning we got the transfers, had the baptismal services of the Peñalva family and I didn't tell anyone I was leaving until Saturday. I really loved that branch and was super stoked to work there for a few more months, but this is a great opportunity to learn and to grow. I got here into Bahia Blanca last night at 8pm, took the stats for the mission, got done at 12:30, DROVE a car - that was a weird experience with my awesome stud comp Elder Costanzi from Buenos Aires, Argentina.  I maybe slept an hour because we kept having to go to the bus terminal to pick up sisters missionaries who were arriving at their areas. Good stuff... I am really grateful for this experience. I already today have been able to have tons of contact with President and his wife and they are so awesome. I love them so much. Here we go!!  My last year of my mission just got a lot faster. I am really excited to serve and get to know all the missionaries more. It is going to be a great opportunity. Next week an Area of the Seventy comes and we are doing a mission round so that will be doing a lot of traveling.
Leaving Necochea

This week I was reading in Alma 43 and really enjoyed studying the importance of preparation, and to see how Moroni received revelation, ideas, and inspiration through his preparation.  I am in Acts 12 now and am enjoying the Bible as well. I loved what Papa said last week in his letter about pondering the scriptures. I tried to start all my studies with questions this week and it helped me to have a deeper thought time. I LOVE MY MISSION!!

 Dad- I am glad to hear that things are going well there at lake.  I love it when you give me updates on all of the kids. My favorite letters. I love you Dad and will be thinking about your example a lot this week. Thank you for your prayers. I love you with all my heart Dad. I sure miss you.
Mom- Yesterday I bore my testimony in church and told the congregation that they all need to meet my family - especially my Mom. I talked about how you told me that it is important to show love to each person with the time that you have with them. Love others to the fullest everywhere you are.  That lesson has helped me a lot. Mom, I sure love you. I am so grateful for you. You have no idea. Have the best day ever. Good luck with your wedding this week. I love you!!
Mikesell- Wow... My thoughts, prayers, and fasting have been in your direction this upcoming week. I cannot believe that this is your last week in the big Stanley ID. Enjoy it. Mikesell, my first few months at college were some of the funnest times, but also some of the hardest. I challenge you and encourage you to be strong, pray, read, build strong friendships, be firm in mind, and to just attack it. At one point it will all hit you - that you are growing up. Mikesell.... I really love you. I hope that you just eat it up there at UVU. I will be praying for you always. You are going to do such great things there. Just tear it up, tear it up. Burn that campus with your spirit.  You have institute class right? For sure get involved in that. Mikesell you’re the best. Go get em!!
 Brennen- I am so pumped for all the good things that you are doing!! Bagged another two peaks this week!! I loved that picture that Dad sent me on top of Elk Mountain... That was incredible. All I hear is that you do great things and are just destroying it. I am so proud of you and the great example that you are. I love you bro. Thanks for being a warrior. Keep putting on the armor every day!! I miss you bro. Keep it up!!
Alex- I am so happy for your buddy. I also loved seeing that you are working out on the ranch with Del and Wheaton. You will learn a great lot from them. You are such a stud. Alex, I love you man. You are the best. Keep reading those scriptures and praying…it may little but so important.  Keep it up.
 Harrison-I am glad that you are super happy buddy. I bet you are just growing a ton. You will have to send me pictures of your summer experiences! I just think you’re the best Harrison. I love you man. Live the dream! 
McCall- Hey sugarn- I love you and am so excited for you and for your attitude! I am super excited to see how you have grown. I sure love you and I want to give you a huge kiss. I love you.  
I love you all so much and I hope that you are having the best week ever. I love this work and testify that this is true.
Love,  Elder Austin

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