Family and friends! How´s everyone doing? Things are going great here. This past weekend we had a baptism. Lusmila was baptized on Saturday. It went really well. Elder Baugh did the baptism. She had had a few baptismal goals, but because of work wasn´t able to actually get baptized on those dates. Her work schedule changed though and she was baptized yesterday. She´s from Peru and is a friend of one of the members in our ward.
Right after the baptism on Saturday we had an activity. It was a dessert contest. SO all of the members were supposed to bring a dessert and a friend, then we had a judging and all. It went really well. It was very stressful because we ended the baptism and right away went to the dessert contest, but I think it went well in the end, so that´s good. I´m attaching a picture of the baptism in the letter to mom and dad. I can´t send it to everyone, but if anyone wants to see it, they can ask them for it. So Lusmila was baptized on Saturday then confirmed by a member named Tomás on Sunday. It went really well.
Tony never had a goal for the 27th of February, but he was praying about it. Anyways, what happened with him is that we called him one day and he said to Elder Baugh, Elder, I have something to tell you. I want to be baptized. But I can´t be baptized until March. As it turns out, the friend that he heard about the church through wants to come to his baptism and she can´t do it until March. Here´s the story, it´s quite interesting. He said one day he doesn´t know why, but there was a girl with the name of Ruth who was one of his friends on Facebook. I guess they started talking and as it turns out she´s from Utah and has talked to him about church, sent him links of church sites in arabic, etc., and emailed President Hinckley with his info. so we could contact him. So yeah, it´s a really cool story, and right now it´s looking like the 14th of March is when he will be baptized. So that´s really good.
Let´s see, what else new has happened. Oh, we´ve been working with some less actives, and a couple of them came to church this past week, so that´s good too. What else, oh, mom asked how often we eat with members here. I would say we eat lunch with them 5 times a week, and dinner about 3 times a week, but we´re going to change dinner. We just told everyone that we can only eat dinner with people from now on if they have either a recent convert there, a menos activo, or a non-member. We´re not supposed to eat dinner unless that´s the case, so we changed. I didn´t ever eat dinner in Vilafranca, so here´s it´s been really hard eating dinner, because I just don´t have that much space in my stomach now to eat two big meals like that. Anyways, mom also asked how often we eat with the hermanas. We eat with them at almost all of the lunch citas, but dinner citas hardly ever. So yeah, that´s that with eating. This past week we had a zone conference. It was really good. We talked a lot about The Book of Mormon. It was a great conference. To make it even better we got to have Dominos pizza for lunch.
This past week I also did my first splits with members. It was crazy. Especially because I still don´t know how to get around very well with the transportation and all. Like memorizing all the bus numbers etc. It´s good though. Well, I´m going to go write the individuals now, but have a great week.
-Elder Sommerfeldt


Christmas 09

Elder Sommerfeldt and Johnson in Cornella (September ish)

Elder Morales, someone, and Elder Sommerfeldt... Christmastime 09


Family and Friends! How´s everyone doing? So, just so you all know, to start off, I now have a new email address. This is the new one. They updated myldsmail.net or something. It´s now whatever this is, which is ryan.sommerfeldt@myldsmail.net
. So that´s good I guess. It´s powered by google and it´s just like gmail almost. I don´t know if I like it as much though. I´ll get used to it though. Anyways, so I´m in Barcelona here. My new companion is Elder Baugh and things are going great. I still miss Vilafranca a lot, but I´ll get adjusted to life here. So, the first thing, it´s really different here. It´s so much bigger, and we don´t walk nearly as much, we use public transportation to get around everywhere. The other thing, we´re in the same ward as some hermanas, so we see them a lot. Third thing, we eat with members a lot. We usually eat with the hermanas, so that´s why we see them almost daily. We also eat dinner here, so it´s weird eating three meals again. The first few days I was so full and could barely do it. Anyways, that´s that. My birthday was good. I got a package from Jen, and I´m still waiting on the package from the fam. I´ll get it soon though. I also got something from Pilar, if you remember who she was from Vilafranca. She gave me something the day I left and told me I had to wait until Friday, my Birthday, to open it. It was a notebook with some pictures in the front of me, Elder Nelson, her, Yirka, and Josué. So that was nice of her. I´ll get to go back and visit everyone there someday. The ward´s nice here, but so much bigger. I´m used to knowing everyone, but there´s so many people here that it´s not like that as much. Also, we have two investigators that we´ve put baptismal fechas with. One of them, Lusmila will be baptized this Saturday, and the other one, Tony (he´s from Egypt, speaks a bit of English, and is learning Spanish, we teach him in English) is praying about the 27th of February now and wel´l talk to him about it tomorrow. So yeah, things are going well there. Mainly, everything is so spread out so it´s harder to be able to visit with everyone because there´s a lot of travel time between everyone. Things are going well though. Oh, my birthday was pretty much a normal day. The Ayudantes and Elder Baugh made french toast in the morning since it´s my birthday, so that was nice. I don´t know if I told you, we share a piso with the Ayudantes, so that´s fun. They´re only there about half the time though because there always traveling. Let´s see, what else is new. I got cards from Grandma and Grandpa Brockbank and Grandma and Grandpa Sommerfeldt, so thank you for those grandma and grandpa. Oh, it´s been really cold here lately. Yesterday it was even snowing. Really lightly, but there was snow falling. And the humidity makes it freezing, and this past week there´s been a lot of wind on top of that, hence it´s been quite cold. All in all, things are going well though. Well, I´m going to go now and right individual emails. Next week this email will be a little more interesting because I´ll know a little bit more what I want to talk about. Have a great week and I´ll hear from you next week.
-Elder Sommerfeldt



Hey Family and friends! How´s everyone doing? Well the sad news is that this is my last time writing to you from Vilafranca... I´m going to Barcelona this afternoon to be in the Barcelona 1st ward there. So that will be interesting. I had a few things that I was going to say before I found out I was getting transferred, so I´ll hurry and say those, then talk about the transfer, etc. So, first off, a couple weeks ago I was a genius and mentioned to people that I have a coin collection, but that I didn´t have any coins from any of their countries, so guess what... the next week I got a coin from Chile, a coin from the Dominican Republic, a coin from Bolivia, and a coin that Spain used before the euro. It´s cool. I´ll have to see what I end up with by the end of my mission. Next thing, I got the coin from the Dominican Republic from Belkis. She left this past week to go to Italy, like she moved there. It was kind of sad, but she was doing super well right before and was really excited to get there and find the church, and we talked all about getting her records sent and all, so I think she´ll will be just fine. So yeah, that´s that. What else, oh, I got a letter/birthday card from Jen´s mom this past week and she said something about a temple in Payson! No one´s ever told me about this. So what´s the news with that? That´s cool though, I always figured someday there´d be another temple in Utah Valley. Next, Elder Nelson and I were jogging a couple times a week every morning. It was fun, but super cold. We both only have shorts and t-shirts for exercise, and it was way cold outside, but that´s okay. It wasn´t too cold once we got going. This past week too, we´ve played basketball a couple times at a nearby park. We have half an hour of exercise each morning, so that´s what we were doing for that. It was also fun because a member, Pilar, would come to watch us play basketball in the mornings. She´s changed a ton. She was having a hard time, but now she´s one of my best friends here, and she was always helping us and giving us food, etc. It´ll be sad leaving. What else, oh, the umbrella I had that was really nice from Men´s Wearhouse in the trash now. It broke, and then just got worse and worse until it hardly worked, so I had to trash it. Luckily Pilar had an extra black umbrella, so that´s what I´m using now. So that´s that. Yesterday was a sad/fun day. We passed by Jose, Ibraham, Joseph, Francis, Johny y Aidaley, Hna. Durán, Josué, Pilar, Yirka, Fabiola, and Karlita y Raquel. It was sad saying goodbye to all of them. I got pictures for all of them. I also showed my Sommerfeldt for President shirt to most of them, because they´d heard about it and all. Pilar put it on and I have some pictures of her posing with it, so that´s good. I even have support in Spain now. I also made CDs of a bunch of my pictures this past week. There´s three of them, and I´m sending them to Jen. I just sent them today, so she should get them in a week or so, then get you guys a copy. By the way, with all my pictures, make sure you save them, because I sometimes delete them off my camera, but that´s only because you guys have copies, so don´t delete them, and keep them in a folder somewhere in the computer. Thanks. So I´ll be in Barcelona, my new companion´s name is going to Elder Baugh. He´s in the same group as Elder Nelson so he´ll be going home in July. Oh, also, last night after we had Noche de Hogar it was kind of cool, because everyone got up and talked about me for a while. I didn´t know how to react, but it was good to see I´ll be remembered. I´ll come back here right before leaving to go home though, so no worries. But it´ll be a year and a half. I´ll miss Elder Nelson too. We´ve gotten along really well. A lot of the members here have even said that we´re the best companionship (like working together, getting along, being effective, etc.) that they´ve seen here in Vilafranca. So yeah, it´ll be weird there. But he goes to BYU, so I´ll see him after the mission for sure. Well, oh, another interesting thing. I´m going Barcelona, which means that Elder Morales, my last companion, is going to be my zone leader. So that will be kind of cool. Another thing, I called Elder Baugh this morning to figure out our address there, and he said we´re really close to the office and we pass by there a lot. So for now you guys can just send things there. If anything changes I´ll let you know, but anything that gets sent can go there. I think that´s about it. I´m sad to leave Vilafranca, it´s like leaving my home, but I´ll go where I´m called. Well, I´m going to go now, but have fantastic weeks and I´ll write to you next week from Barcelona. ¡Chao!

-Elder Sommerfeldt



Family and Friends! How is everyone doing? Things are going great here. It was another successful week with lessons and we have a lot of people that are so close to accepting a baptismal goal, so that´s good. I wrote down a few things that were big this past week to talk about, so I guess I´ll write about those. First off, thank you for the reeses mom and dad. I love reeses, as you know. Anyways, I got the reeses when we went into the office for interviews. THat´s the first thing. We had interviews this past week, on Thursday. It was good. I got to talk with President Hinckley and learn some more things, learn some techniques on how I can contact better, etc. So that was good. Elder Nelson told me after too that in his interview President Hinckley told him he had a great companion, so that was nice to hear. Anyways, interviews were good, and it´s always fun to see the other missionaries, including those in the office and all.
Next, I think you´ve already sent my birthday package, but if not, can you put syrup in there. They don´t have syrup here that I can find anywhere. I just want some good cheap, sugary syrup for german pancakes, but I can´t find them. I made german pancakes this past week and had to just use powdered sugar. It tasted good, just not as good as with syrup. Oh well though, that´s not the most important thing as a missionary.
Okay, now onto some more mission related news. This past week Elder Nelson and I planned and carried out a ping-pong tournament for all of the youth in the branch. It was a doubles branch and the catch was that you had to bring your partner, and your partner couldn´t be a member. A lot of people brought people that we´ve already taught or are teaching that are great friends, but aren´t ready yet, and some people didn´t even bring friends, but two people came that we´d never met before, so that was good. After the tournament, which Elder Nelson and I won, by the way, we had a little message then refreshments. During refreshments I talked with one of the kids that had come, Bryan (17 years old), and we set up a time to visit with him. So he´s a new investigator now. SO that was good. He seems like a good kid, so we´ll see what we can do to help him out.
Next, we went to Vilanova on Saturday and a guy named Manuel Rojano drove us out there. We visited with that family, Alex, Olga, Romina, and Sebastian. It´d been a while since we´d visited them, but they were still doing good. The member we brought with us talked A TON though. We were there almost 2 hours, which should never happen, but the member just kept talking, telling them about the Urim and Thummim, etc... In the end it was alright though, and I think they´re still interested. We´ll just bring different members in the future. I hope we can help them to be baptized here soon though.
Okay, next, we´re still teaching Humberto, he´s doing well. He´s 17 and I think he´ll probably be baptized within a few weeks. He´s just a little hesitant to commit himself right now. We´ll see what we can do there though. So that´s the brief update on all that. Let´s see, that´s the gist of what´s happened this past week too.
Oh, here´s something that´s unique to Spain. Here if you want to cross the street and you´re at a cross walk you just cross. Cars have to stop for you. If you´re just standing on the corner cars will come up and stop and wait for you to cross. A little different from Utah where we try and hurry and pass before the pedestrians cross. It´s weird for me though just walking even when there´s a car coming. It´s good though.
Belkis is doing well. Actually, this past week we printed out pictures of all of the recent converts within the past few weeks and put them on a bulitin board in the church with their names so the branch can remember them and all and recognize them. The counselor in the presidency saw it and said he really liked it and thought it was a good idea. So that´s good. Basically, everything here is going great. We´re in the last week of the transfer, and I´m not sure if I´m going to leave or not. If it´s completely normal I´ll stay for one more transfer, but it´s not always normal. So we´ll just have to wait and see. Oh, along with that next week my Preparation Day will be Tuesday, just so you know. Also, I think this next week I´m going to give my camera to a member to make some CDs, so probably you can expect getting those eventually, in a couple weeks or so. Anyways, I can´t think of anything else that´s happened this past week, so I´m going to go ahead and send this. Have a fantastic week though. ¡Chao!
-Elder Sommerfeldt