February 2, 2015
As for being out of the office... I couldn't be happier! Really and truly, not being AP anymore has made me more happy then anything else for a quite some time. I ceremonially transferred the phone of power to the new Assistant, Elder Willis, and it was like a huge dark cloud was taken off of me. And due to Elder Cloward being made the district leader, and not myself, I have NO more follow up calls for the rest of my mission! Yaaaaaay! Freedom! People will still sometimes ask me for permission for things, but then I tell them "I'm just a trainer, not an Assistant, go call Elder Willis." A very nice change indeed.
Now I am training a brand new Elder from Delhi. His name is Elder Peter. He is very westernized, so he fits in pretty well with our apartment (which has me and two other american elders in it, Elder Cloward and Elder Thompson). Being a trainer is definitely the most rewarding position in the mission. Without a doubt.
It was nice meeting with all of the new missionaries because they have such a bright hope and faith for their mission. They expect so many good things to happen. I don't think they realize how difficult it will be, but I'm grateful to see their enthusiasm because it re-pumps me up.
Also, I am back in Convent Road, but this time on the North side, not the south side. So it been kinda fun, and difficult, to find different people to teach and visit than I did last year. It's also cool seeing how the branch has changed in a year. Some people have gone off to America, other people were newly baptized, some Less Actives are now active, but also some actives have become less active... It's also cool seeing how physically much people have grown in one year! The primary kids have gotten so much bigger!
Really really sad news for the week though... Sister X just completed her mission. She has become one of my good friends on the mission, and I love her family a lot as well (they live in the south side of Convent Road branch, so I used to visit them quite a bit). Well, 2 days after she got back from her mission, her dad died.... I tried to imagine how hard that must be, but I can't really understand it. Unbelievable... I was also shocked by how some people talked to her at the funeral. I don't claim to know how to be sensitive people that just experienced a death, but I was appalled by what some people told her. As Sister X was telling me about how her dad died she started crying, and then while she is mid-tears one the branch members practically starts to scold her! "Why are you feeling so sad? Come on, you just back from your mission! You know the plan of salvation! You know you're gonna be with him again some day, so you shouldn't be so sad about it." I understand that knowing the plan of salvation must help, but that doesn't mean the rest of your mortal life is going to be easy without a father! I feel really bad for their family. I think we are going to visit them tonight.
I don't think I'm getting trunky. Having a trainee really helps, because it forces me to show him exactly the way missionary work is supposed to be done. In fact, I'd say I am being more obedient than I have for months! I hope to do a lot of good here in Convent Road before I fly off to America.