Monday, November 26, 2012

I had a way awesome week this week!!! We found this sweet Indian village!!!! I'm talkin' about naked people and wigwams!!! We were on our way to Nuevo Asuncion and we saw an Indian woman walking through the woods and we followed the same trail she took and found like 25 Indian Guarani families living in this community thing. Some had mud huts and others had houses made out of trash bags and sticks. We tried talking to a couple of different families but they didn't speak Spanish. We found out though they do carvings for a living of like armadillos and cocodrillos (Crocodiles).  My companion wants them to do a carving for him of the Cucapei (no clue what this is . We found some people that knew some Spanish and talked to them about the gospel of Jesus Christ and whether they would be willing to come to church...they said yes but they didn't come. We are going to be working more with them this coming week though and we're going to find someone to translate for us for the people that dont speak Spanish. 
We walked through the jungle looking for the road to Nuevo Asuncion and we popped out like 3 kilometers outside of it when a chipa barrero truck went by and he yelled, "what the heck are you guys doing out here?" We said, "We don't know! Where are you going?".  He was going to Nuevo Asuncion, so we hopped in the back with all of the chipa (chipa is a type of bread)  because there wasn't any room in the front.  It was like sitting in a oven and there were super bumpy roads. We ate 2 chipa bread rings and payed the guy. It was super funny because we hopped out really sweaty and smelling like chipa and then they sold some of the bread we were just laying on to a guy. hahahahaha.
We also have been teaching this awesome lady, Raquel.  After teaching her 2 days before, she read all the way up to 2 Nephi. We taught her about the law of chastity because she has 2 kids with her boy freind who lives with her.  She is making her boy friend move out until he decides either to marry her or leave. She has had some incredible spiritual experiences and her testimony of the gospel and the Book of Mormon is growing really fast. She came to church this Sunday and hopefully in a week and a half we'll have her and her two sons baptisms. The effect that the gospel has on people is amazing and I feel incredibly blessed to be able to see peoples lives change and be blessed as they find a testimony that Jesus Christ is our savior and that his word and sacrifice for us is what truly brings happiness in this life.
I love this work and I love you guys. Thank you so much for the letters Dad, Mom, and Jessi!!!!! I got a dear elder letter from you, dad, already. All of your letters are helping me a ton.
Elder Neifert

Monday, November 19, 2012


Dear family,

I got gypped by the dang computer lady and I tried doing email for like 30 min and restarting everything twice, so I only have a few minutes and will reply to more letters next week.

I am only supposed to write to family... I think that means everyone I'm related to.
Thank you for the letters Jessi, Fil, Dad, and Mom.

This week I did a division with President and his wife which doesn't happen very often. We went to a lady named Raquel's house who showed up at church last Sunday with her son, Alejandro. We watched The Restoration video with her and talked about the important role that the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ can have on our families and what it means to have a prophet who directly receives revelation for the church. She was super receptive and the spirit was amazing as she shared about what kind of things had prepared her to be ready to change her life around. She wants to be baptized right away but she is living with her boyfriend and so she'll have to get married first, which they want to do anyway. We also talked about eternal families with her. It made me think a lot about you guys - everybody in our family and how great and blessed we are. I love you guys.

And dad that's totally sweet, dude! doodly doodly doot doot! (Dad and the dog, Bentley, were on a walk and found a deer.... The deer was severely injured (like broken leg - not gunna make it) and needed to be put down. The dog obviously saw it and started to go after it. The part Seth is so excited about is that his Dad, who didn't have a gun on hand, ended up taking it down with the dog leash and a pocket knife.) I salute you my good man. You should make a kimono out of that deer skin and wear it to do your walks in the morning from now on.

Bekah - I love you a ton, I hope you had an awesome time at camp!

I will respond to more emails (Jessi's, Fil's, and Mom's) next time. I am sorry I dont have much time today, because I stink at computers


Elder Neifert

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Taking up His Will

Hola Familia Neifert,

HAPPY BIRTHDAY, DAD!!! I hope you had some good pie! 

It is really weird how when I think about home its super cold and the leaves are almost gone and then here its getting hotter and hotter.  Did you guys get my pictures? 

This week I read a really awesome talk called "The Fourth Missionary"  and it really changed the way I taught and looked at my purpose as a missionary.  I don't know if you guys can find it, but that would be an awesome talk to read for anyone going on a mission.  I think the main thing I took from it is that the only way that we can reap the fruits of being a missionary is if your heart is in it completely.  You can't learn anything if you don't give your heart into the work, because otherwise everything you do will be biting a bullet because you would rather be somewhere else.  If we give our heart over to God he gives us new desires, a new purpose, a new driving force that over time changes us into a completely new person whose will becomes aligned with the Father's.

So I tried focusing on giving all I had to the Lord and his work and placing my will to the side and taking up His will. 

After that ward blitz in Nuevo Asuncion, we had a lot of people who wanted to hear more and so we spent a ton of time out there this week.  Nuevo Asuncion is in the middle of nowhere and a lot of the people don't speak Catellano(Espanol) only Guarani.  There isn't anything there, but really poorly made houses and farm animals + poop canals.  We met a ton of people who wanted to know more about our church and a couple who just wanted to be baptized on the spot without knowing why or what role baptism even plays in salvation.  We did a lot of explaining and inviting and invited about 30 people to church!  Its nuts how many people had been prepared for us and wanted to hear and learn more about the gospel.  We also have a ton of in-actives out there and we spent a lot of time trying to get them to church. 

We also found a couple of people who are super prepared to receive the gospel and we had some incredible lessons with both of them.  One guy's name is Hugo, he is really curious about the Bible and the Book of Mormon and had some really deep questions about God and his plan for us.  We talked for a while and he expressed how the only people that he would trust to really guide him to know God's will is a prophet of God!   I almost jumped the gun I was so excited! I was going to just yell out, "THERE IS A PROPHET AND HE IS CALLED OF GOD TO DO THAT!!!,"  but I held it in and started talking about prophets of old and who a prophet is and does. I shared scriptures like Amos 3:7 and others from the Book of Mormon.  We shared the first vision and he said he would read and pray to ask God if it was true. 

We also found a whole family who all really want to know more and we taught them on Saturday about what the restored gospel of Jesus Christ means for us and left her a plan of salvation pamphlet.  She read the whole thing and came to church the next day with her son Alejandro.  She came with a ton of questions and we answered some and then taught her more about how she can receive answers for herself through the scriptures and prayer. She can receive a testimony of what is true through the guidance of the Holy Ghost.  Then we went to sacrament meeting expecting some sweet talks and surprise surprise -  it was the primary program that day.  It was nuts and kids were running around and crying all over the place.  She said she had a good experience, though.  Hopefully, we can have a great lesson this week and she'll come to church.

I love you guys!!!!

Elder Neifert

Monday, November 5, 2012

Dear Family,


I got both dad's and Derek's letters this week!  And they are 3 weeks behind everything.

The money here is in Guarani's and I get 850mil a month.  Which was way funny to say, "I'm about to drop 50 mil on a banana bushel," but it has gotten a little old.  I have a debit card they gave me but right when I get reloaded with money, I go to the ATM and cash it out. 

My new place is okay... it doesn't leak!!!  But we are in it with 2 other elders and we have all of our stuff in a tiny room.  1 bunk bed, a table, 3 armoires, 3 chairs, and 2 fans because we don't have air conditioning.

We didn't do much this week, Elder Bredsgaurd was sick with what he thinks is a bug he had about a month ago that has resurfaced.  We went to the hospital and they had to run some tests - so we stayed at the office elder's house which is super chuchi (super fancy).  It had air conditioning in every room and had hammocks so we spent the night and studied all day. After they got all they needed for the test, we had to hang out at the office for another day waiting for results. So we studied and  watched church movies.  And then they called and said  the results wont be back till Tuesday, so we took a collectivo home and went back to work.  The next day we had an awesome day planned and a lady showed up who worked for the mission and made us clean our house all day.   And then I had chi vi vi wasu (shee vee vee Waa soo) (I have no idea what this means) and so we only taught a couple lessons Saturday, but they were good lessons. Sunday was awesome! We had one of our investigators show up for church and were going back today to teach him more!  Also we had a ward blitz on Sunday and the whole ward went out to visit less active members and eat lunch together in Nuevo Asuncion.  We found like 7 people who said they wanted to be baptized!!!  Elder Bredsguard and I are super excited for this week! 

I uploaded pics.  I hope you guys can see them.

I love you guys and I hope you are getting better, Mom!  And keep up the missionary work, Dad! That's awesome!

I will think about Christmas box stuff! I hope you guys had a good Halloween!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Hello Family,

ELDER BEDNAR CAME!!!!! It was way different than everybody expected!  We had a big conference down in San Lorenzo and both the North and South missions came.  We woke up at 4 in the morning and got there at around 7 taking collectivos (from what I can tell- a collectivo is a bus.) all of the way down. (Which so far is my favorite thing about Paraguay (I always think of Brother Goerring when I take those... behind all of great people and spiritual stuff.))  We had a big question and answer session for 3 and a half hours!  It was awesome! I think the main messages he wanted to share with us is that we need to teach people not lessons and that people are agents not objects.  Also that the spirit is the teacher not us! He said, "Do you really think that somebody is going to change just about every aspect of their lives because a 19 or 20 year old boy from the United States tells them too?"  Also he talked about how we shouldn't be playing the game of 'guess whats in my head' with an investigator. We need to ask questions really looking and listening for what they are feeling or thinking about (which is way harder than it sounds).  His wife spoke, too and there were some really awesome testimonies afterwards.  Then we took some really packed collectivos home and it was like 95 degrees outside. I felt sick and slept for an hour and then we went out and worked.

 We had a baptism this week set up, but our investigator didn't pass the interview and we are having second thoughts about what steps he has taken to know The Book of Mormon is true or that we have a prophet today, or even if God exists.  That is the biggest problem I think that people have here in Paraguay.  They all say they believe in God and Jesus Christ, but don't understand or care to understand why they believe in either of them or what it means.  It is really tough teaching someone when you can't find out where they are to start with.  Btt that is where inspired questions come in and where letting the Holy Ghost be the teacher helps them have a stronger desire to learn and grow closer to the Savior and Heavenly Father.  

Thank you for the letters Dad, Mom and Jessi and for sending the address! 

And congratulations, DEREK!!  That's awesome!  You are going to love the MTC and France!  Something I had wished I had done before coming out on a mission is have a stronger knowledge of the scriptures. Something that's helped me now is thinking about problems or doubts people have and find scriptures to help.  Same with Preach My Gospel.

Elder Bredsgaurd and I caught  a snake on our way home yesterday! I have a picture... And he stepped in a big cow turd this week!  (There are a ton of cows that wander around everywhere.) 

We have moved from the really leaky house into a better one.  The pictures are of the leaky one.

I also went on a split with another new missionary who was from Guatemala!  I was really worried that I wouldn't be able to help at all because my Spanish really isn't that good yet, and Elder Bredsguard translates for me all the time.  But it worked out and I was really blessed so that people were able to understand me and I could converse with Elder Lopez really well! 

I am really slow at typing, so my letters aren't as long as I want them to be...that and I don't have very long, but I love you guys!!! Thank you so much for the letters and updates.  MOM! Did you score?  You must have scared the kids you were playing with really bad!!!  I hope you get better soon!!!  (Elder Neifert's mom teaches 4th grade and injured her leg playing a ball game with them recently.)

I cant figure out how to do pictures. Sorry.
Elder Neifert