Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Oh ¡que triste!
I´m being transferred to.....................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................Motril!!!!!!!!!!!
That mean adios 120º F Sevilla and hello to a MUCH cooler Mediterranean (i don´t know how to spell that word)
Motril is in Granada right along the coast. Next to the sea. I know nothing about it except its cool, its only a branch (for now) and I´m serving with an Elder from my CCM group!!!! Elder Rodriguez! It´s so exciting but so so sad. I was sitting in church next to one of our investigators when the bishop announced I was leaving, and she looked at me and said "now you won´t be here for my baptism". It was so so so sad. But the future is always ALWAYS bright.
I´m gonna miss Sevilla so much. All the members were really sad that I was leaving, an old lady cried, (yes!) and it made me sad but honestly made me feel really good. Now it is a little prideful but as a missionary its nice to know that you feel like you make a difference. So although it was sad, it was really sweet (that sounds weird but you get what I´m saying). I´m moving from a city with 6 missionaries to one with only us 2. I think I´m gonna like it, its definitely gonna be different.
So like I said, my new companion is from my CCM group, so its gonna be us two kids in our little branch, but I am SO excited. I´ve made some REALLY good friends here, missionaries, members, investigators (soon to be members) Elder Fagersten is gonna have a handful of baptisms soon (or at least he better!!!!!) No he´ll be great, (but seriously I´ve worked hard here).
As always the mission is wonderful. Elder Stanley (who lives with us) is dying (going home) on Wednesday. We´re all going to Málaga on Wednesday and then we´ll part our ways for our new areas (his is home). Its strange to see the two sides of the mission, me still pretty green and him right at the end after 2 years. Strange to think of what going home will be like-which makes me want to work harder now.
4 Months really have gone by FAST. But at the same time, its starting to get hard to remember my old life before the mission-¿what did I do all day? I really don´t know. I don´t know what to do after the mission. Its HARD work but still I don´t know what else to feel productive with my time.
A few nights ago I was in a cita with a part member family who has a girl from Nicaragua living with them. I was talking to her and she said she served a mission in Honduras, ¡¡Honduras!! And I asked her if she knew an Elder Kirkham and she said YES! She knew I was Andy´s brother when she first saw me, but she didn´t want to sound weird. As if we don't hear weird things every day. But ya, I forgot her name, I have it written down but its in our piso, she said she served in the same zone as Andy but i don't remember where. Its something like Hna. Aras or something, I´ll remember to bring it the next time I email. Sorry, but its a really small world.
I´m so excited to hear about the Smiths, I can´t wait to hear the news every week. Our ward mission leader just adopted 3 young kids as well and they always love to hear the news on the kids. Dylan Gavin and Emma. I´m just so SO happy. Give them big hugs from Uncle Matthew.
Last week I wrote about how my patience was being tried, this week I want to say, that the Lord blesses us after the trial. We´ve seen MIRACLES this week. Last night I just felt really guilty for my attitude last week. The Lord blesses me every day, and I hardly deserve any of it. But the important thing is that he is in His work. I know that.
I love you all, I don't know when I´ll get the latest mail, sometime next month but next week I can give you my ADDRESS!!!!!!!!! it will be so nice. I lost some of the letters I´ve written when we moved so I´m sorry to those who feel neglected. I´m trying to get over being the same forgetful lazy Matthew. My companion tells me I´m still really spacey. Oh well. I find it endearing in myself. (joke)
I love you all. Love you Mom and Dad. Love you Hermanos (siblings), Love you Sobrinos (nieces and nephews-i think those are spelled right) special love to Dylan Gavin and Emma- Hola from Spain. I Don´t know you three yet but I already love you and say welcome to the family! And also Love to mis amigos! ¡¡Les quiero a todos!! I love you all.
Elder Kirkham (the last email from Sevilla)
Oh ya mom and dad there's a family who says you HAVE to come to Spain and stay with them. jajajaja Just passing on the message.
Love you

Monday, June 20, 2011

This week has been a trial of my patience. Oh my. But an awesome one as well. One of the best in my mission so far.
Stress news first then happy news. I am slightly going crazy. I LOVE Sevilla. I love the people we teach, I love my companion, but all of them have been trying my patience.
Sevilla is HOT (really not that big of a deal, just really hot) and everyone in Sevilla is leaving soon(let me explain). Everyone and their dog (literally) leaves for the playa (beach) during the summer. So there's only old people who never leave their pisos. But still that's ok. Its just hard to meet with investigators when they're not in Sevilla. Again not a HUGE deal, just trying my patience. Then my companion. I love him, I just sometimes get annoyed. The good thing is we work good together, there's no problems there, just a little eye twitch at breakfast or during planning or something like that. But there we go there's the news.
Now the exciting. We´re getting a NEW ROOM for gospel principles class. There was physically not enough room in our class yesterday and we´re moving into the chapel over flow. Which is ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡¡AWESOME!!!!!!!! so awesome.
Also we have peanut butter!!!!!!!! Its a miracle. I swear its the only place in Sevilla that sells peanut butter. I´m so happy. And our new piso is amazing. First of all it has air conditioning, its clean, there's no mold, no cucarachas, no pee getting thrown on us from our neighbors-its great!!! And our Bishop gave us Root Beer from the military base that's in our stake. Its GREAT! What a great week.
Spain is awesome. I´m so excited to come back with you guys (hint hint). But seriously just the places I´ve been so far I want to show you all of it. And I still have 20 months worth of Spain to see!!!!!! We go to lots of pueblos (towns) that are technically in our ward boundaries. They´re amazing. Just White WHITE houses up on the side of a mountain, looking over HUGE green fields. Its AMAZING.
Alright focus.
Also this is the last week of the transfer. Which is sad, because I am most likely leaving. But I just keep telling myself that the Lord knows where I need to be WAY better than I do. It will be sad to leave though and not see the baptisms we´ve been working towards. But the work goes on. I love these people so much.
Good things about Spain
Bread
Siesta
jumbo duplos (delicious candy like a really sweet strawberry licorice covered in sugar)(not like twizler)
Old ladies who want to give you kisses (besitos)
all the black people from Africa (chocolate)
THE BUILDINGS
the culture
a drink called gaseosa (really sweet seltzer water)
the awesome people
gypsies
Undesirable things about Spain
hoochy viper clothing during the summer -yikes
all the chlorine in the water
dog droppings EVERYWHERE
smokers
lack of peanut butter
really disturbing picture of Jesus outside our door (we want to change it to a happy one)
hoochies
hoochy posters of hoochies
lack of clothing
gypsies
alright I love you all
I love Spain as well
Happy Fathers Day Dad and grandpa and STUART!!!
Happy Birthday Daniel and others with their birthdays
Love you all
besitos
Elder Kirkham
I really am loving life

Monday, June 13, 2011

Be a rubber band

What a week!
Well Dad sent me a friendly reminder that my emails are too scatterbrained. Sorry, I´ll try really hard to focus my thoughts more. Honestly I´m just trying so hard to remember what happened that I type whatever and whenever I can. But I promise I´ll try harder.
Well this week. We had specialized training in the Sevilla Zone. That was great. I always learn so much from President. Good news no intercambios this week, those just stress me out so much. And you know how crazy I get when I´m stressed.
I´m starting to dream in Spanish now-that is I talk in Spanish in my dream but ironically enough there are sometimes when I can´t understand the OTHER people in my dreams. My subconscious is so cruel that way. Oh and apparently I speak in Spanish in my sleep (so says my companion).
So being companions with Zone leaders has its perks and its poops. We learn a lot of stuff early, but then, we know it, I´ll have to just explain. Right now there's 4 Elders in our area, me my companion (ZL) and another Elder and his companion (other ZL). The president wants to consolidate 4 into 2 (which it should be) so I basically KNOW that I´m leaving Sevilla in 2 weeks, which is the hard part. Its not that I´m getting lazy or anything, I´m just so sad to know that I´m leaving these families I love so much.
We have been teaching this recent convert form Peru and TRYING to teach the rest of his family but they've always been busy. He brings his granddaughter to church but we can never meet with the rest of the family. And THIS WEEK we had a noche de hogar oops (family home evening) with them. And they CAME TO CHURCH!!! It was great. There are 2 daughters and their boyfriends (they're both Spanish) and the granddaughter. It was great. This month all of Europe had a special fast to bring someone else to church. What a GREAT blessing this family has received from it. One of the boyfriends just loves us. He wanted to take us hiking on some festivo day he has off of work, so we might be changing our Pday. But who knows.
AND
A girl we´ve been working with for longer than I´ve been here, is just doing GREAT. Last week one of the assistants was on intercambios with my companion teaching her. He invited her to be baptized, she said yes and they set a date. BUT he didn´t know that she´s living with her boyfriend. So now she WANTS so bad to get baptized but can´t. Its so sad. She´s too poor to move out now and she´s planning on moving back to Peru soon anyways so she doesn´t want to get married and AHHHHHHHH. Its so sad. She wants SO BAD to get baptized and we have to tell her she can´t. So we´re waiting on a miracle.
But the work goes on. Oh and we´re moving TODAY!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I´m so excited. And it seems like I´m not focusing this letter any better.
Being here is the best decision I´ve made. The hardest thing for me is the battles inside me. Beating myself up for things I could do better or not meeting our goals or whatever. And when those things happen its hard to keep your heart in the work. For that the specialized training was great. It just seems to come when you need it the most.
I think one of the best lessons I´ve learned is to be a rubber band, yep. A rubber band is nice and comfy just sitting on the table thinking its a cool rubber band. You can put a rubber band around a deck of cards but if its not stretching, the cards just slip and slide and fall around. So you stretch the rubber band and it hurts and you're scared of snapping, but the cards stay in place.
You don´t grow in life without stretching. The hard stuff in life seems like it might snap us, but its the stretching that makes us better.
There's my words of advice or wisdom or whatever. Remember the stretching makes us stronger. I love you all. Please pray for me, even though I know you already do. I love being a missionary but not because its just a fun vacation. I love being a missionary because God is shaping me he´s making me into a better person and I somehow help other people at the same time. I know the gospel is true.
I love getting your letters and emails. I love you all. Remember that the stretching makes us stronger and in reality keeps the cards from falling.
love
Elder Kirkham (kit-kat)
ps. Jennifer and Stuart I´m SOOOOOO happy for you guys! I wish you could bring me some homemade bread with peanut butter and jam

Monday, June 6, 2011

Hola. Here's a Mass ¡Feliz Cumpleaños! to June

Well, what a week its been. I´ve been on 4 intercambios this week. Both of the AP´s, Elder Stanley yesterday (he lives with us) and Elder Walton today (his companion). You learn a lot when you´re with other companions.
I never know what to say. Right now there are some Romanians yelling across the room. That's exciting. I understand now why missionaries seem to write less and less as their mission progresses. You just get used to it. You get used to talking to crazy people every day. Crazy experiences. Awesome Experiences. You get so used to it, it just becomes your life. Its getting harder to remember my old life (before the mish). I´m so used to being a missionary.
We´ve been planning a musical fireside this past week, about the life of the Savior. We´re putting our extra time into that. We´ve been fallared a lot this week. (fallared: real spanish verb fallar which means to fail, with English -ed ending) There's A LOT of Spanglish going on in our vocabulary.
We always sing Hercules in our piso. But we don´t know all the words. So if someone would be so kind to email me the words to the first song that the muses sing "gospel truth" as well as the "who put the glad in gladiator" song; I would love them forever (truthfully). I´m finally buying some more stamps today. So I get to send the giant pile of letters I have. Yay!!! and sorry I´m so lazy.
There was an hermana here who wrapped up a chocolate bar and put a stamp on it just to see if the Correos would send it. And they did. So I wonder if they ACTUALLY weigh the letters.
We had SO many people at church yesterday. Still no baptisms but there are so many READY to be baptized. It's just little things that are stopping them. Getting married, finishing a doctorate thesis (not little), getting permission from mom, etc. But wonderful things are happening in Sevilla. The gospel is as hot as the weather.
I probably will be leaving Sevilla next transfer, almost positive. They want to consolidate .....there's an old Spanish woman smiling at me....they want to consolidate our area to just 2 Elders instead of 4 and just have the zone leaders in our ward and the hermanas in the other ward. And seeing as I WILL NOT be zone leader WILL NOT be zone leader, I´m leaving. So that's sad. I´ve been working so hard with all these people. I love them so much.
We had this OLD OLD lady feed us yesterday. Oh my yuck! She gave us this meat, which she started off by saying "I don´t like it but I made it for you". Its the "meat" off of a pig's neck, so basically ALL FAT. Oh my I was gonna throw up. But the bread was delicious.
We also now have a group of students from UVU doing a study abroad in Spain and they're going to be in our ward for the next month. It makes me feel good because my Spanish is WAY better than theirs. But I love Sevilla.Its crazy to think, woah!!!! you're in one of the most famous cities in Europe right now!!! while your walking down the street.
A woman told us that lots of old people die during the summer every year. I hope this old lady (her name is Angelita btw) I hope Angelita doesn't die this year.
Today is going to be a pretty low key day. Got to buy some stuff. I´m gonna cut my hair for the first time since the CCM (its kind of long) and we´ll eat some really good food.
There's this stuff called Tomate frito that's what they eat with pasta here. Oh my gosh I LOVE it so much.
I love being a missionary. We STILL haven´t moved. Oh ya, the Senior couple in charge of medical and health stuff inspected our piso and told us we can´t live there and are surprised we´re not SICK from all the Mold growing. So, love you all.
Daniel keep loving scouts while you still can!!!!!
Oh and I had the best Ice cream of my life this week
And I really would like those Hercules lyrics
Love you all
Elder Kit-Kat (that's what everyone calls me now, yes the chocolate candy)