Wednesday, July 15, 2015
The weather here has been incredible too!!!! Every single day we get up and it's cool outside til about 11 and then it heats up a little til about 3 and then the clouds come in and it is either overcast or rainy for the rest of the day. I will probably enjoy the rain even more when I'm not walking outside in it for 5 hours haha I honestly don't mind the rain. It's either get home wet from rain or wet from sweat; I prefer rain cause it doesn't smell as bad :) I have really enjoyed the mission though. I can't believe that it has already been almost 2 years. I didn't even remember that yesterday i completed 23 months! haha it's interesting because the time has recently been counted going down, not going up.
let's see... what happened this week..... well, we are still pretty much teaching the same investigators, but we found this incredible lady last saturday! We walk into her home, and it is just so pretty and open to the spirit! her boyfriend is a member of the church that got baptized about a year ago, and she called him when she saw us on the bus. She didn't want to jsut talk to us. So she decided to do the following: If we got off at the same time as her, then she would talk to us. I remember that day; we were going to get off a block later, but we decided that we might as well get off with her. ummm, coincidence? i know that it wasn't. She is sooo incredible. She is already in 1 Nephi 17! Yep, she is pretty freakin awesome!!!!!! She couldn't come to church on sunday, but she is going to come this week for sure!
I also saw some pictures a couple of weeks ago that I hadn't ever seen that you guys had taken, and I kinda got emotional as well, but it's ok mom, we can make it!
On monday, we got called by President and we had a special "suicide watch" assignment. Needless to say, someone had to be with this elder at all times, and his mother had asked that we watched him for the night. So we tried to pull an all-nighter (worst decision of my life)! We played monopoly til about midnight, and then we got permission from pres to watch both the Lego movie and Frozen (both of which were phenomenal!!! And even though I tried, my stomach started hurting so bad by about 3:30 that I just decided to go to bed. Elder Orchard was the only one who made it all night, and the sick elder got exhausted and crashed til morning as well. We had to get up at 5:30. I swear I almost puked multiple times because even when I tried to nibble on things, my body was like "i'm too tired to eat, I'm going to give it back to you!" So I didn't really eat until after we got back from the airport and I got to crash for a few hours before going back out to the area to work. I felt pretty aweful though. However, now that I am a little more rested and feeling a little better, it was a pretty fun night without the stomach ache!
I am not sure what else to really write about... We went to my first area today to say goodbye to some converts. It was such a good time! I love them soooo much! i got the opportunity to share my testimony with one of the families that has been struggling with going to church because of their schedule, and that was very special for me. I hope that they can come back to be sealed in the temple! That would be sooo awesome for them!
I think I am going to ask you to forward this mom! Thank you much! I know this church is true. The mission really has changed my life. I know that christ lives, and it had never occurred to me how important it was to share our beliefs with others that he lives and that he has restored his gospel! It is VERY IMPORTANT!!!!!!! I hope we can all find a chance to share our beliefs this week!
Love Elder Norr
Wednesday, June 24, 2015
Ok, so after getting my mom's email of "hey, haven't received an email in 2 weeks hint hint" I figured i should probably write again this week. In my defense, these last few weeks have been soooooo crazy! The first week of this cycle, when I wrote on monday, we were in the offices all day with the news on monday, Tuesday was changes and a pretty normal work day,we went to Teotihuacan on wednesday (I will explain in a second), Thursday we had to go to migration all day (in super nice part of town called Polanco), and friday one of my comps went with pres ALLLLL day from about 7am til about 11 pm to clean out all the houses that are now empty, and saturday was a normal work day. Sound exhausting? The answer to that question is YES!
First, what is Teotihuacan? Answer, Ancient Aztec civilization that is over 2000 years old. Is it awesome? Uh, YEAH! There were tons of people, all of which were trying to RIP us off for the cheap fake things that they sell to ignorant tourists for 20 times what it is actually worth. But it was an awesome experience! They even had original wall paintings that have been preserved for over 2000 years! Sweet. It was about a 3 hour trip to get out there and then another 3 to come back, we got completely fried because my neck was the only place I didn't put on sunscreen, but it was a blast!
Polanco? Just a super nice upscale city in the middle of mexico city. We decided that we had a couple of hours to kill while waiting for green cards, so we went and got something for lunch and then we went to an art museum. It was interesting, but I don't think I am a very good art person. I just can't really grasp the whole This woman has a giraffe's neck and drawers coming out of her stomach interpretation, but it was rather entertaining.
Last week we went to Maravillas (second area) to say goodbye to some members and the convert I baptized while I was there! Turns out Raymundo (the 18 year old that I baptized) has now had the opportunity to baptize his younger sister and we are hoping that he will decide to serve a mission soon! Super cool opportunity!
Yesterday we had to go get green cards again so we ran to wendy's to get some lunch (there are only like 2 in this entire huge city!!!!9 and then we decided to go to a really cool aquarium. It has 3 underground floors that have all different types of jellyfish, sharks, rays, fish, crazy things, and it was a blast too! I don't think i have ever been to a real aquarium before. I have been fish and sharks in tanks, but I think this is the first actual aquarium I have went to. It was a blast!
Now for the spiritual things! The last couple of weeks have had incredible miracles. our companionship has decided that if we want something from God, we must tell him what we are willing to do to get it. Each of us has goals as well as companionship goals that we are going to work on this week to truly show God how willing we are to work to receive his blessings! I have never really thought about that concept before, praying for God and then telling him "look, I am willling to do this, this, this, and this, but I am asking you to please bless me with THIS." it makes sense though. We must decide to be willing to tell God what we are going to do so that he will bless us. "I the lord am bound when ye do what I say; but when ye do not what I say, ye have no promise." DyC 82:10. That has been something that has really helped me this week!
We went and made Horchata with the Familia Macedo last week and it was delicious! I love horchata, and now I know how to make it! Yes! We had stake conference on sunday, and that was an experience! THere were many inspired talks that I really enjoyed! Also, 2 of the members in our ward were given the melquisedec priesthood (one recent convert that was baptized about 5 months ago, and another man who has been a member for 5 years, and is absolutely incredible!) It was such an incredible privelage to see them ordained. I know my life has been blessed by the Melquisedec Priesthood that my dad has held, and that I have never had a great chance to serve than I have while holding it. It truly is the link between us and Our heavenly father!
So, now a funny spiritual story. We found this incredible family last night. Please pray for them. Griselda and Salvador Alva. So this is something that I have seen a couple times in my mission but I love it. The father was willing to offer the closing prayer to the lesson. We explained to him a little bit about how we should pray and he started. He was doing such a great, simple prayer, and then his daughter (less active member) slowly started to help him when he got a little lost, and then finally he was just like "that's all I got" and his daughter just kept the prayer going for a minute and ended it. I have only seen tag-team prayers a couple of times in my mission, but they are a little funny. I am just grateful that the people are willing to try to pray in a way they aren't used to. This family is very special and I hope you can keep them in your prayers as they continue to receive the missionary discussions.
Also, we went by with a lady named Rosario who is the sister of an old investigator who we were really looking for. we ran into Rosario and she accepted a return visit. She wasn't at the appointment, so we went to the house where we found Griselda and Salvador, and then we went back. As we were walking up to the door, a lady from the other side of the street said "you guys are looking for me." Ummm, what? Turns out, it was the old investigator Adriana that we had previously looked for. We go over and say hi to her and her boyfriend. We start talking to her a little bit. The conversation was a little awkward at first, but then the wheels got rollin. Turns out her dad is sick and has to be treated in a hospital that is in a completely other state (lame) and she and her sister have to be there almost all the time to watch out for him and take care of him. She received the mission lessons for a week... She read up to Alma 42 in the book of mormon, went to general conference and received at least the restoration and the plan of salvation. She know what baptism was and they had talked to her about it; she wanted to be baptized, but then her dad got sick. She has a hymn book, everything. This woman is incredible!!!!!!!!! We tried to set up an appointment, but because of her dad, she couldn't give us a date. She has our number and she is going to call us when she is home! I felt we should sing her a hymn, so I asked her if it would be ok? her words "You guys are going to make me cry. I'm here with my boyfriend, and now you guys show up. I'm just going to be an emotional wreck. God always just seems to send you guys when I need you most. I just don't want to cry right now.... But what hymn are you guys going to sing me?" haha We sang "Abide with me, 'tis eventide". I promise we have never sang that in tune in this entire cycle. I felt as if we were singing with angels to this woman. It was just such a sweet spiritual experience! Loved it!
Well, I think that's it for the next 2 weeks....ummm, I mean, uhhhh...... nevermind sorry mom haha I'm grateful for the gospel in my life. It is a true gospel and I am grateful to be a representative of Christ. The mission is coming to an end. I literally have less than a month left in my mission. We gotta us the time we are given! I hope you all go out and help someone in need this week. You will know who they are. Don't be afraid, just have faith!
Tuesday, June 9, 2015
Hello everyone, I decided to write today because we are going to be int he offices all day, and I doubt I will really be able to write on p-day because we are going to be gone most of the day. The family Acosta Velazco got baptized this last saturday! It was a beautiful baptismal service and I will never forget it. I would like to just write a little bit about their story today.
We received the familia acosta velazco as a reference from the sisters in the other ward. They had given her a quick guided visit of the stake center. Guadelupe (mom) had went to the elementary school in front of the stake center almost 40 years ago and had always wondered what happened inside. When we started teaching Guadelupe, she was just an incredible investigator! Her eyes just sparkled and she understood what we taught. She started to study on her own and began to know more and more as we kept teaching her. Finally, we got the chance to have an appointment with her whole family. They said it would be tough because they were really busy, but they made it to the appointment. We got to meet Jose Israel (father), Estafany (daughter 20), Daniel (son 18), and Fernanda (daughter 11). We started just kind of getting to know them, and right off the bat, they were open with us. They explained their doubts, questions, everything. After a couple lessons, the dad explained that he wasn't sleeping well in their home, and that they had all experienced some weird stuff in their home, but the person who really noticed was the dad. He had served in the military and had been a security guard too; he had seen some things that just wouldn't leave him alone. We felt we should give him a blessing. He accepted, and we gave him a priesthood blessing. The following week when we got to talk to them again, his wife told us that he hadn't had problems sleeping or anything since the blessing. SO COOL! The lessons continued, and they accepted the date for the 30th of May. We went to get them married on that saturday morning, the judge got their late, but when it was their turn, they couldn't get married. Guadelupe didn't have a social security number; like it really didn't exist. BUMMER. So the following week, without us, they went 2 or 3 times with the judge until they could finally get married! They got baptized on the 6th of June, 2015. I baptized Guadelupe, Estafany, and Fernanda. The spirit was sooooo strong. The baptism started a little late, but it was probably the strongest baptism I have ever been to. At the end, the time was given to Guadelupe and Israel to share their testimony and their feelings. Guadelupe bore the sweetest testimony and it was just soooo great! I wish I could have hugged that woman!!! But can't... Israel then stood up, and he has always been the one who keeps it together, is really calm, doesn't express much emotion. He thanked everyone for coming, and then his eyes started to water up. He then said "I'm grateful that my family can be here with me today. Thanks to those 7 minutes of tour that my wife got in the stake center, my entire family has been able to find the true church". My eyes started to tear up. It was such a sweet tender moment! Fany wasn't going to be able to make it to the confirmation, but everything worked out so that she could make it and stay at church. The confirmations were so beautiful. The spirit was soooo strong in the sacrament meeting, and it was also testimony meeting which made it AWESOME!!!! This family truly is a one of a kind family! I love them dearly! Thank you for all of your prayers and support! I hope you all have a great week!
This church is true! Live it! Love it!
This is the familia ACOSTA VELAZCO!!!! THEY ARE JUST SOOOOOOOOO GREAT! They got baptized on saturday!!!!!
First, This is Hermano Salvador. He's an awesome brother. He helps us out all the time with our visits! This time we were painting that room that e are in!
That's just me hanging out on p-day in my hawaiian shirt.Blotter and I got pretty excited when we got to put together the new vacuum for the offices haha
Wednesday, June 3, 2015
Hello everyone, I hope you guys are all doing well! This week is going by sooooo fast! The mission is literally starting to just feel like a dream. This week has been awesome so far! We had almost all of our investigators come to church with us this week, which was awesome! However, the familia acosta velazco didn't get baptized. When we went to the public registry (judge's office) Hermana Guadelupe didn't have a curp (kinda like a social security) and turns out, she doesn't even exist in the system.... :/ So, they couldn't get married, but they have already tramitted another curp and they are going to get married tomorrow at 2! Please pray for them! They are sooooo great!
So, I think it is time for me to take my anti-paracite booster again (it says to take it once, and then again in a month to kill the strong bugs) because I think in the last couple of days I have dropped like 3 pounds... But no big. We went to walmart, and the solution to 3 pound weight loss is.... ICE CREAM! So we are on our way back from walmart, and we have the big recyclable bags. I have everything from a gallon of milk to eggs to juice to fruit to body wash in my bag. I change shoulders and after a little while I here something pop (something in the bag, not my shoulders haha) I had the ice cream on my hip since we left walmart so when my hip started getting colder I didn't really pay much attention. We get back home, and go up to the kitchen, I put the bag down on the table, and reach inside for the stuff. ICE CREAM! It had popped the top on the ice cream and compressed the container so that quite a bit of it was squished out and on my other groceries... Oh man....... Not to mention the giant ice-cream stain that I found on my left hip. So that's why it was sooo cold.....
In the area we have been doing really well! We have had the chance to go looking for most of the less actives in the ward. It is so sad when you get there, and they tell you "them? They haven't lived here for over 2 years." These baptized members of the church just disappear until someone someday says something that will get the "I was baptized into the lds church" comment out of them by surprise. But nonetheless, we have been working hard. It hasn't rained as much lately either. We are working on a project that is called "mil vidas en cien dias" (1000 lives in 100 days) It includes each companionship choosing 10 families in their area/ward and then working with the ward to make sure that those 10 families get/stay converted and active for the rest of their lives. It is a good project, and even though my companion and I are starting a little late, we are trying hard to get into a little more action with our ward with regards to this activity.
I learned a very important lesson in the last week. The truth, it was pretty rough, maybe not on a physical level, but on an emotional, mental, spiritual scale, it was tough. Sometimes we want to make it sound like it is just great all the time, but it's not easy. I didn't really have tons of ganas (i don't really know the best word for that in english; it's like desire) I was doing the things that I should. Reading, praying, teaching, financial stuff, but I didn't feel good. I prayed and prayed that God would help me have ganas. I looked in the scriptures hoping to find some cool scripture that would motivate me. I read a lot. I prayed a lot too. But I didn't find what I was looking for. I finally one night realized something. God doesn't always just give us more strength. He doesn't just give us the scripture that motivates us always. Sometimes it is our own responsability to make a conscious effort to feel better and be better. I wasn't reading different things than before. I hadn't stopped praying. But I was different. I looked at everything from a different perspective than normal. I finally decided that I was going to wake up the next morning and try. I was determined to not have another day that I didn't want to have. God always gives us the signs, but sometimes it is our perspective of the signs that either keeps us going up the right path, or starts us going on the wrong path. We need to want to see the good in the world that God gives us.
My companion found this video and I think it would be cool for you guys to see.
Life really is a great gift. We have truly been blessed with so many talents and abilites. God knows our true potential, and through the atonement of his son Jesus Christ we may someday return to his presence. I hope we can all understand and appreciate that. Thank you all so much for what you do! I hope you have a great week!
Wednesday, May 27, 2015
Today has already been a really fun day! We decided to go take the bell tower tour (recommended by President Stutznegger) in the 500 year old catholic cathedral down in the center of the city. It was interesting. We got to walk up some really cool spiral stone stair cases, and then when we finally got up on top of the roof, we got to walk around and take pictures and stuff! It was pretty sweet! Sister Stutznegger told us that from the top, you can see the mexican city temple, but it was a pretty hazy day.
Also, we had quite a few investigators come to church with us on sunday! We are hoping to baptize guadelupe's family this saturday, but first we are going to have a wedding in the morning!!!! Should be exciting!!!! Our ward mission leader brought his dad to church and he has been taking some interest in the gospel, and we also are working with an incredible woman named Prisila.
So it was getting kinda late, and we decided to knock on the doors of the people that were obviously home on that street. We almost get down to the end of the street, and we decided to knock on another door. We knock, hear "it's the mormons" from inside the house, and then a 30-35 year old worman (prisila) walks out, opens the door, and tells us to come on in. She told us that she had asked the elders to come visit her over a year ago and they never went.... but we got there!!!! She said that she was looking for a church and then she remembered her friend Ingrid. She said she looked that she had a stable, nice life and that she was a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints! THANK YOU INGRID! So we have been teaching her, and she has accepted the baptismal date for the 4th of July!!! Great way to celebrate independence day! From sin! haha
Well, other than that, we've just been having fun and working hard. The mission is going great, but I can't believe that here in a week or 2 I will be going into my last cycle. But life is good, and it only gets better! I hope you all know that I love you and the lord loves you! May he bless you in this upcoming week! The church is true! If it weren't, I wouldn't have come down to mexico for 2 years!
Have an excellent week!
Also we were in luck!!!!! We ran into a world fair in the middle of the city! Got to go see tons of different people from all over the world sharing a little bit of their culture! Pretty awesome!
This is a wooden staircase at the top of the bell tower! Each beam is one piece of solid wood! It is over 200 years old!These are the pictures that we took TODAY! We went into a 500 year old catholic cathedral and we went on a tour of the bell tower. They have tons of bells and really cool staircases. It was kinda weird being in a catholic cathedral taking a tour while there were church services, but it was also a really cool tour.
This is the familia Macedo! They are such an incredible family and probably one of my favorites! They are just so great! They gave us those hats that we have on! They say "MEXICO" on them!
Wednesday, May 20, 2015
Hello there everyone! I hope you are all doing very well on this fine day! I know that I am! This morning we got up and went to our area early for a service project; we rebuilt a roof! So we get there at about 8:30 and we go to get the laminate pieces. I was thinking like 4 or 5 feet tall laminate pieces that are about 3 feet wide that would way about 15 lbs! ummmm..... no...... We get there to pick up 30 FOOT LONG LAMINATES that are about 4 feet wide and weigh 120 lbs! Ummm..... this should be fun! So we had to carry 5 of these bad boys out of the factory and to the members home. after taking 3 we decided "let's just take the last 2 together"..... UGH! That thing was a beast! Holding 240 pounds of laminate above your head between 6 people doesn't sound that bad, but it was still pretty tough. Then came the fun part! Taking rickety wooder ladders and leaning them up again the house and holding this thing about our head and passing it to the elders and member that were up top! It was tough, but it was a really fun service!
Rainy season has gotten here early!!! Really early! So it has been raining every afternoon at about 6 o'clock. The dark clouds settle in and the rain pour out. The first few days I didn't have an umbrella, but there was one specific day that we were walking and Elder Blotter DID bring an umbrella, but there was sadly not really room for two.... No big, I didn't mind getting a little wet. We were walking on the sidewalk of one of the main roads in our area and I look over at Elder Blotter cause we were talking. Cars had already been going past us, but while looking over, out of the corner of my eye I just see a red mini cooper that is flying down this road and all I see out of the corner of my eye is that this guys car is about a foot off the sidewalk and going through an ENORMOUS 25 foot long puddle up against the curb..... dang it....... I only see a 6.5 foot wall of water that punches me in the face and soaks me with dirty backed up drainage water.... It was cold. Elder Blotter was on the other side of me so he didn't get as wet, but I just got soaked! Anyways, that day we were walking around and we were just getting wetter. We decided to go with a very less active man that hasn't bee to church in over 20 years, and he is only 40. We show up to his house soaked to the skin and he lets us in. We felt we should share a conversion story about the anti-nefi-lehitas. We explain it and how they were truly converted to the gospel.... PAUSE
BACKGROUND INFORMATION: This man is inactive for some issues that his parents had with their marriage, and he still is holding an awful grudge towards his father and another member of the church.
PLAY: He looks at us as we are discussing a little bit, and he asks a question: "How did they forgive the people that killed all of their family members and friends? I have noticed that I have very strong feelings that I need to fix, and I would like to know how they did it so that I could also do it."
This was an AH HA moment because we had been wondering if this man was really understand that he needed to change. THis man had been thinking and was guided by the spirit to know that he needed to change. What a miracle!
This email is getting pretty long, but I just wanted to post an update on the familia Acosta Velazco. They are doing great! We are hopeing they get baptized next saturday! They are such an incredible family and I love them very dearly! I hope you can include them in your prayers!
The weeks get faster, but I am also noticing that I am learning even more things! The adversary is just a liar and a distractor. He doesn't have the power to remove answers from God or spiritual experiences so he just does his best to put so many things into our mind (including doubts, hobbies, business, job, etc.) that we get distracted enough to not remember the good things that we have recieved from God. Opportunities are like the bus. Even though we are waiting for them, all the adversary wants to do is distract us just long enough so that when we come back to our senses the bus has already passed. I know that christ came to help us overcome our weaknesses and be able to take advantage of the opportunities in our lives. He loves us. He has done everything for us. I know that the atonement really happened! It is the greatest sacrifice in history and even though not in history books, it is the historical event that we should know the most about. I know God lives and watches over us! I know you can all feel his love if you want to! Look for him every day! Help other find him! I know people are prepared for all of us!
Have an excellent week! Thank you for all of your love an support!
Wednesday, April 29, 2015
WOW! I cannot believe how fast this last transfer was, and honestly, I think it was probably one of the hardest transfers that I have had. But now it is over and this transfer is going to be even better! So now Elder Blotter and I are in just a normal companionship and we have already met some pretty awesome people this cycle in the area. Yesterday we went out to work, and we already found 2 new people that said they would come to church on Sunday with us! YAY! Also, we are hoping that a couple of the investigators that we are already teaching will be able to come with us to church this week and we shall see if we can help them take another step towards baptism! :)
Today was weird. Today Elder Schaap went home. I met him my VERY FIRST DAY OF THE MISSION! We have the same trainer and everything. And we have been in the same district, zone, house, for about a year! It was kinda weird saying bye to him at the airport, but he served his time, and now it is time for me to finish serving the rest of mine! It is just strange now that people that I have know for a long time start to go home. It just seems like time is going by SOOO Quickly now!
Cool experience! So yesterday we had to go on an errand to help out one of the assistants that went home today. We had to run to the market in the center of town to pick up a couple of last minute things he didn't have time for. So on the way back, instead of taking the metro train like normal, we decided to try something different and take the metrobus. it is pretty much like a metro, but they are buses instead of trains and drive on the surface streets of Mexico City. So we get on and the bus is supposed to stop at station "Ethiopia", but instead it goes about 2 stations and everyone gets off. We are like "sweet! Now we can sit down!" nope, the only people on the bus were us and a man sitting towards the back that the sides of his head almost shaved and longer, slicked back hair on top. We asked him if the bus was going to ethiopia and he told us that it should. However, a minute later, we got off the bus. The other man decided to go talk to the conductor. SIDEPOINT: So the doors on the metrobuses are like double-doors that also pivot (if that makes sense). So they just kinda scissor together, hard, when they shut. So the man comes back to talking with the conductor, and he already looks upset. If that isn't enough, he is about to step out of the train, and the conductor shuts the doors on him; he is pretty much just talk pinned in between 2 hydraulic doors. We were close, so I ran over and pried the door open so he could get out. At this point, the man is pretty ticked, but thanks us for helping him. When the next bus comes, we get on, and I am standing pretty close to him. He has his headphones in, and suddenly I just feel the impression: "TALK TO THIS MAN!!!!!!" I tried to not really think about it, because truth be told, he kinda scared me a little bit haha After a couple of minutes of repeatedly feeling this same way, I decide to talk to him. We start out talking about las vegas, and life, but to make a long story short, I start explaining a little bit about the missionaries, and he starts having questions, and as things just keep moving along, not only do we get the chance to explain a little bit about ourselves, but we get his address, and we get to explain quite a bit about the restoration, and he wanted to learn more!!!!!!! He doesn't live in our area, but we are going to pass the reference to the other elders in our mission! Hopefully he will get baptized before I go home so I could go!
I don't think I really have too much more to write this week! Things have been going well, and for the most part I have been healthy (always a good thing!). I suppose that I will just end this week's email with my testimony of the restored gospel. We must understand the importance of what Joseph Smith really did! We must understand that we would not have the gospel today if he had not had the courage and faith to ask our father in heaven to know which church was true! I testify that we must know these things if we expect to find peace in this life. I know that the church has been restored through Joseph Smith, and that the Book of Mormon is true! Where would we be without the knowledge and testimony that we receive through the book of mormon? Think about it. I know that Christ leads his church. I know that we are imperfect people, but that if we strive, we will be made acceptable before God! He loves us, and wants us to learn and grow! Let us strive to understand more fully the restoration of the gospel and the blessings we receive, have received, and will receive in the future because of it! I know this will help us stay strong in times of need! :)
I love you guys!
Hope you all have a good week!
P.S. Picture time!
1) A selfie with all of the newbies/ assistants that got here on monday!
2) Sister Luque. She got here when I was being trained. She is back home in Argentina!
3) What? Even luchadors get hungry sometimes! haha
Saying Bye to Elder Schaap at the airport
It wouldn't be an airport trip without the Krispy Kreme doughnut stop!
Bowtie family pic at the changes!
Thursday, April 23, 2015
Ok, so this time I need to write so you guys know what things are.... haha
First, this are called "guitarrónes". They are the huge guitar that they use in mariachi bands! Second, So skeletons are a big part of the mexican culture, and they have these really cool porcelain/ clay statue things and they are awesome! 3RD, please tell me that you all know what these are! SOMBREROS!!!!!!!!
First, Alebrijes! They are sweet!
2nd, This is black clay stuff from oaxaca! Also really cool!
Finally, this is this sweet little bag store! Probably what you would like mom for your scriptures!
Tuesday, April 21, 2015
This week was absolutely incredible! I just felt that there was sooo much revelation and good things that happened last week! We have been doing well with our investigators! Guadelupe has been progressing really well! We taught her the plan of salvation and she totally understood it. She has committed herself to reading the book of mormon more too! SHe couldn't come with us to churhc.... :( but we have an appointment with her tomorrow! We are hoping to meet her family!
Funny story! So, my companion, Elder Blotter, thought he saw the other 2 office elders go down into the bottom floor where all the bunk beds are (basement, super cool, perfect for sleeping) for a siesta. It was p-day so there wasn't a problem, but my companion and I have a different p-day so before we left (they had shut the door to the room so no one would go in and mess with them like we normally would) Elder Blotter grabs a spair mattress and wedges it inbetween the stair and the door. It wasn't like they couldn't get out because if you pushed the door a little harder, the mattress would just fall anyways. It was just a little funny thing. We get back home, and the mattress is still in place, and the door is still locked. We came to the conclusion that they had not really been in the room like my companion had thought.. Anyways, that was just background... So last night I went down to shut off the lights and make sure the door was shut. I noticed the light was on in this bedroom...... freaky..... So we decided to go in through a sketchy basement window. it was pitch black, and I was with both the assistants when we jumped down there. We drop through the window into the bathroom (there is a door inbetween the bed and bathroom) Elder Perea (assistant) jumps down first, and then i jump down with him. I go and open the door quick, and there is nothing in the room.... no one..... nothing..... Hmmmm. So i go and unlock the door, and I was looking for the lightswitch and elder perea sticks his hand out the door and shuts off the lights...... :/ The light swith to the room was in the hall and someone had turned it on by accident without noticing!!!! We were freaking out there for a while thinking about why the light was on haha
So, now for the SUPER AWESOME SPIRITUAL STUFF! There has been a family that has not been to church really in almost 5 years. The family Macedo. When I first got to the area, a member told us where they lived and we went to see them. We would go at least once or twice a week and not find them. Finally after a couple of weeks, his brother opened up and gave us Brother Macedo's phone number. I called him and they said they would go to church, but they didn't.... They hadn't really went to church even though they had said multiple times to ward members that they would go. Well guess what?!??!?!?! They have been going for the last 6 sundays! :) YAAAAAAAAY! We have been teaching them once a week in their home. It is a family of 3 and they have a little boy. This last thursday we taught about the importance of scripture study and the spirit was SOOO STRONG! Finally, at the end of the lesson, they told us they wanted to share something with us. What was it? quote:"Elders, starting this sunday, we are going to pay our tithing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!" YESSSSSSSSSSS! It was such a sweet moment, and then they asked to take a picture of us with them and they are going to print it out and send it to us! AWESOME!
The spirit has been sooo strong lately! And I feel like I am definitely becoming more in-tune with it. I know that this church is true because any church can have good things happen in it, but only in the true church can constant miracles become a reality! I know that God lives and even though I have never seen him, I feel his love and his protection. he listens to us as we pray and strengthens us when we stand in need! I am grateful for the gospel in my life and know that if we follow the teachings and example of Jesus Christ, we will find happiness, and I mean TRUE HAPPINESS forever! I know it!
I hope you all have a wonderful week!
Tuesday, April 14, 2015
Thursday, April 9, 2015
Hello there again! Many of you are probably wondering where I have been for the last couple of weeks. I guess no one saw my "gone proselyting" sign on the door of my room haha
Things have been really cool lately! We have found lots of really cool people that are accepting the gospel and we hope we can help them accept a couple of baptismal dates by the end of this week and invite them to come to church with us.
First off, I don't really write too much on mondays cause wednesday is our P-Day. Since we are the secretaries, everyone comes in on monday for mail and other stuff and we don't really get th chance to do anything, so we have P-day on wednesday so if you don't see anything from me on monday or tuesday then don't get discouraged, cause it will get there.
First the funny, then the really spiritual, even though it is all good stuff! So friday we were asked to not leave the offices for safety reasons, but no big deal. So, things were just pretty normal. Got up, ate breakfast, did exercise, and then we get looking at this little tiled 10 x 12 foot patio that we have in the very middle of the building. It has no ceiling or roof and has concrete walls on all sides with a door to get in. What happened with a bunch of 20 year old creative, hard working, active, handsome young men with way too much free time on their hands? We cut the top off of a 5-gallon bucket, grabbed some screws and a drill and put up a basketball hoop in the patio. We didn't have a ball, so we resorted to my volleyball, and just had 1 on 1 on 1 games to 21 for hours! It was so much fun, but I woke up sooooo sore the next day! It was a really awesome conference weekend! There was fun, but also the spirit!
Who got to watch conference?! I did! This time was my last general conference, and I decided to watch it all in spanish! It was a little bit of a different experience, but the spirit was there all the same! One of our incredible investigators named Guadelupe (Gua-day-loo-pay) come to conference, and in the second talk I noticed she had closed her eyes for a sec (that's normal), but during the congregational hymn I asked her how she had felt and she asked me about my notebook that I was jotting things down in. I told her that as I listened the spirit would sometimes tell me to write things down that would help me in my life and my issues and those were the things I was writing down. I then asked her "do you know what the holy ghost is?" She replied no, and I explained a little bit to her about who he is and what his role is, and then I mentioned that maybe while she was at church, talking to us, praying, singing hymns, etc that she may have felt peace or love. She lit up and said "I FEEL THAT! I have honestly jsut had sooo many of my questions answered in these last few minutes that I have been here (the first hour of conference). I really feel that way here now." It was SOOO AWESOME! The spirit was soo strong, it was just like a cloud (figuratively) in the church building. Guadelupe is soo awesome and wants the gospel in her life! Can't wait to see her tomorrow!
That should be it. I think one of my favorite things from conference is from Elder Caussé of the seventy. "The path doesn't change that much, but our eyes do." (I hope I translated that right) Many times the things that we do in our life based on our circumstances seem rather ordinary and we fall into the habit of seeing things as ordinary, or even boring. This can include church activity, sports practice, scripture study, homework, even everyday miracles, but we must be careful not to fall into this thought process. Everyday miracles are still miracles, and maybe we just need to open our eyes a little wider to see something new and exciting in the routine things we do daily, weekly, or monthly. God has given us the incredible ability de recibir revelación por medio de su santo espiritu, y if we pay attention, nos daremos cuenta de verdades hermosas y nuevas en the everyday things that to us seem "ordinary". I know that the lord will talk to us and give us guidance if we listen, and if we look for something new and exciting, we will find it. I got 20 months now.... that's weird, but I find myself getting excited over things like it was my first month in mexico, and I'm LOVING IT! Try it! You'll have a great week!