Spencer is from Canton, Michigan and is called to serve in the Ecuador Quito North Mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints from July 2014 - July 2016.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Week #101 - Comité Del Pueblo, Ecuador - July 4, 2016

Dear Family and Friends,

Well, it's been another interesting week here in Comité del Pueblo.

President Richardson and his family went home on July 1st and our new mission president, President Murphy and his family, are here now and have been on a tour of the mission last week. Our area got to meet him on Friday. He brought 3 of his 6 kids with him. President Murphy is a little rusty with his Spanish. One of President's children served his mission in the Dominican Republic and got home over a year ago so he could speak some Spanish but he seemed a little out of touch. It will be a good opportunity for them to learn and touch-up their Spanish...hahahaha!

Unfortunately, it's still been pretty dangerous in this area. We have had a couple of close calls last week. But my companion and I have been as cautious as we can be, plus the criminals/gangsters around here are pretty easy to pick out of a crowd. They pretty much dress the same, and are usually smoking or drinking, which isn't a good sign.  We just have to pay close atencion to everything around us. If we don't, it could be dangerous. At the end of the day, pretty much every single evening, we run to our house as quickly as possible so that noone can catch us or follow us. Honestly, I'm getting pretty tired of that!

This weekend was worse than usual. The last day of school was Friday, and everyone was partying and getting drunk, wild and crazy all weekend. In most of my other areas, the weekends are when you need to be on guard, but in Comité, all the days of the week can be dangerous. For example, we had a close call today at 11:30 in the morning. We were very lucky that there was a police officer nearby. I'm pretty sure we didn't get robbed because he was there. I'm honestly thinking, sometime in the future, that I should get a license to carry around a gun at all times so these types of things don't happen to me again.

Anyways, I'm not sure if I will be able to write next Monday, which is the day before I come home. I don't think I will but I'm not a 100% sure. But it's been an awesome 2 years in Ecuador! Honestly it's been the best decision I have ever made in my life! There is absolutely no substitute to sharing the Gospel and helping and serving other people. It's sad for me to think that pretty soon, I won't be a full-time missionary who is teaching the gospel 24/7. I love being a missionary and wish I could do it for the rest of my life! If only... And I have learned to love the people in Ecuador and it will always have a piece of me. I really liked something Elder Holland shared with us when he came and spoke a few months ago. He said that we will never return to who we were before our mission and we shouldn't ever forget to share the gospel with everyone around us when we return home. That we can't get on the plane going to the Celestial Kingdom and then in mid-flight try to turn the plane around. He told us that when he meets RM's and finds out that they've forgotten to continue sharing the gospel or decided that they've already "served their time" and don't need to do it anymore, that he just wants to take them by the throat and shake some sense back into them! Hahahaha! I testify that as missionaries and also as members of this true church, that our duty is to share our beliefs with those around us. Share the truth of this wonderful gospel that brings so many blessings into our life. I also testify with the First Presidency of the church who have told us that there is no work that brings more satisfaction and blessings than missionary work. I'm so grateful to have had this opportunity and so thankful for all of your prayers on my behalf these last 2 years. You have greatly blessed and strengthened me.

Have a wonderful week everyone! Hope to see many of you in person very soon!

Love,
Elder Dyal

Elder Dyal with President and Sister Murphy

 Quito Calderon Zone with President and Sister Murphy and 3 of their children

Quito Calderon and Ofelia Zones with President and Sister Murphy

 The Zone with the Calderon Hoodies