Garrett in front of the Guayaquil Temple

Monday, January 7, 2013

31 Dec 2012

¡Hola familia desde Santa Rosa, donde me encuentro en mi último P-Day de la misión!

Wow, now didn't the time pass by really quickly? It doesn't seem like 104 weeks, but indeed it is! I'm definitely in for a big change in a week's time! I think I got a little scared seeing all the snow and the temperature! 12ºF! BRRRRRRRR! Please bring me TWO big jackets so I don't freeze leaving the airport!

Well, this is the last week, so I'm going to be throwing a big effort in getting several people baptized, possibly this Saturday, which is the way I'd like to go out: BAPTIZING! So it should be a very interesting week in working with all the investigators!

I was asked to give my "farewell" talk in the Branch yesterday since next Sunday is Fast Sunday, in which I had only 5 minutes to prepare, so it was just winging it talking about missionary work, I'd say it was a good talk for having so little time! Now I'll have to start preparing my homecoming talk!

Not too much in the way of a report this week, we found it kind of hard to teach people this last week due to the holidays, but this week appears that it will be much better!

I love you all, tell everyone I say hi and that I can't wait to see you all next Tuesday! Take care, have a fun New Year's celebration! See you on Tuesday! (Monday I won't send an email, I'll be in Guayaquil eating with President Montalti and the other missionaries who are leaving).

Nos vemos pronto!

Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

24 Dec 2012

Phone Call tomorrow!

17 Dec 2012

¡Hola familia desde una Santa Rosa muy caliente! This last week it has gotten pretty hot here in Santa Rosa! Ah yes, before I start off! ¡Feliz Cumpleaños a Kyley! Hope you have a great day!

This week was really great! We managed to pull off two baptisms this Saturday, we were going to have a third, but we'll have it this week if all goes according to plan! We had the baptisms of our "golden family" Mercedes and Fernanda. What a spiritual experience it was, tears were falling from some people's eyes. I wasn't one of them, but I sure felt a strong presence of the Spirit there! That is one great experience that I won't forget, and it is a good way to be winding down the mission! Now we're basically back to step one again, as some investigators didn't want to keep listening, well, that's their choice, but I feel that they will listen again in a short time.

Wow, only a week to Christmas! Do you have everything prepared? I think I'm good to go! I probably will by some small things next week to keep me occupied! There's a member family close by that has agreed to let us play Monopoly, so that'll be fun!

Well family, that's about all for this week, enjoy the pictures of the baptisms we have had as of late!

Take care, talk to you next week!

Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

10 Dec 2012

¡Hola mi familia! Wow, another week down, one week less to go, only four weeks left! Wow, sounds like you all had a great week, which makes me happy as always! This week went pretty good for us, but this week will be even better, as we are planning on having three baptisms! And what a great time to have them as well, with Christmas just around the corner! The holiday spirit is in the air, and I think that helps out a lot the progress of the Lord's work here on Earth. As it usually is with baptisms, this week will be pretty hectic, but that's alright, the time goes by faster when it is as such.

I must admit, while in Church yesterday, I felt rather weighed down, stressed I guess you could say, with getting our investigators to church, but after taking the Sacrament and saying a few prayers in my heart, I felt a big relief, and that feeling was increased when Maria Mercedes, who will be baptized this week, confirmed to us that she was absolutely sure she wants to be baptized. She had mentioned to us during the week that she was insecure about the decision, but after prayer and reading the Book of Mormon, she now is good to go for Saturday, along with her daughter, who has been sure all along the way, from the first visit! After that I was able to take a nice deep breath and the worries went away! Amazing how the Spirit works in people, and the power of prayer! My testimony of the two keeps on growing, and I imagine it will keep growing as I keep seeing the positive results!

Well, I guess I'll be in for a cold surprise when I get back, seeing as Dad mentioned that the temperature is at 25ºF today!!! Brrr!

That's the update for this week family, hope you all have success in what you do and that the Lord's Spirit may be with you all!

I love you all, tell everyone I say ¡Hola!
Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

3 Dec 2012

¡Hola familia from a warm and sunny Santa Rosa on this first Monday of
December! Can you believe that? This year is almost over, it sure was
quick, wasn't it?

Well, allow me to tell you how great of a week we had! About midweek,
Wednesday or Thursday, we received a referral from a member in the Santa
Rosa 2nd Branch, who has a friend who lives in our sector, wow, what a
great family! It's a mom and her daughter, and when we met them for the
first time, both my companion and I knew they would be baptized! It's funny
how I am in the province of El Oro (Gold), and how the referrals we receive
are golden as well! They have a baptismal date for the 15th of this month,
and another family we have been working with accepted a baptismal date for
the 22nd! It was a week of success, helping all of the people to realize
the importance of being baptized, and today Presdent Montalti's weekly
letter talks just about that: Baptism! This last month of the mission will
be full of success, that's exactly how I want to end, with a lot of
baptisms! Sure, it'll be sad to leave Ecuador and all the great people
here, but I know I've done my best to help them come unto Christ and see
the blessings that come from living the Gospel, that gives me a nice
feeling of satisfaction!

Thanks for your updates this week, I'm glad you all could spend some time
with some of the family, what a nice surprise that must have been! Can't
wait to spend that time with all of you here shortly!

I love you all, have a splendid first full week of December, the Christmas
spirit is in the air!

Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

Monday, November 26, 2012

26 Nov 2012

Hi family from what is right now a rainy Santa Rosa! It appears to be
clearing up though. first time I've seen rain here in Ecuador since April
or so.

Wow, we had a pretty good week, mostly for the fact that we had a baptism
of an elderly gentleman named Luis. The interesting fact about Luis is that
after an unfortunate workplace accident several years ago, he was left
blind. It was a little different teaching him the principles, especially
the Book of Mormon, as he isn't able to see it for himself, so we made sure
to give very powerful testimony about the book so that it would profoundly
touch his heart. And it did! The baptismal service was excellent, but we're
a little short on time, so the photos will come next week! This week looks
to be good, as we'll be teaching more and more people! Today my 16th and
final transfer period began, I'm still with Elder Castro, but it's possible
tonight that there will be transfers, but I've been told I'll stay here in
Santa Rosa until the end of my mission, in the beginning of January! So
we'll see what happens with that! Six weeks to go!

Thanks for the photos, and a new car? I get to drive it too! And the turkey
you cooked looked delicious! Glad to hear all the family is doing good,
tell them all I say hi!

Have a great week, I love you all, and December begins this week! That
deserves a big WOW!

Take care everyone! Talk to you next Monday!

Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

Monday, November 12, 2012

12 Nov 2012 Transferred Again!

Hello family! Apologies for writing late today, but I was transferred this
morning from Guayaquil to the city of Santa Rosa, about 5 hours south of
Guayaquil. Santa Rosa is pretty close to Machala, where it seems eternities
ago I started my mission! It was rather unexpected, as the complete
transfers aren't for another two weeks, but I suppose it's for the best! It
is really possible that this will be my last sector, but we'll see, nobody
knows! The bummer about leaving Guayaquil is that I was going to have three
baptisms this upcoming Saturday, but now Elder Coy and his new companion
will have them! My new companion is Elder Castro, from Lima, Peru, the
first Peruvian companion in the 22 months I have on the mission. There's
always a first for everything! He has about 3 months on the mission, so
when I say new, I really mean it! Although it's sad leaving all the members
and investigators I got to know in Amazonas 2, I'm more excited than I
thought to be here in Santa Rosa. The Santa Rosa zone is well-known for
baptizing a lot, so that boosted my spirits!

I got quite a few emails from everyone today, thanks for writing me! I
don't have much time today, but next week I should be able to get back to

Well, got to get going, a lot to do!

I love you all, have a fantastic week! Chao for now!

Elder Garrett Cederquist
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur