Tuesday, July 28, 2015

2015-07-27 Finishing Strong


JUST KIDDING.  Here is his latest email:

Hey guys, well the second to the last week down here and it has just flown by. We have been working hard and not trying to think about the time. 

Our investigators are doing good and it looks like we will be having a wedding and a baptism on my last Saturday here! So I am pretty excited about that.  The zone has been doing very good and we have been seeing a lot of success. 

This past Sunday there were many people in church and our investigators are coming too.  The old lady that sings Christian songs to us came to church for the second time now, and I really admire her because she is sooo poor and lives alone and she wakes up super early and starts the long walk to church just to get there.  She is good and progressing too...

We have been teaching this guy that got shot up a little while ago and he is still recovering, but he is doing well too.  He wants to change and be better, but he has a lot of bad friends, but he really has come to love the Book of Mormon.  He reads it everyday and seems to be leaving behind the bad things.

Right now I am starting the book of Moroni, the last book in the Book of Mormon.  It feels good to read the book through again and to see the faith and the experiences of the people.  Just being here in this mission has helped me gain an appreciation for the BOM.  

Every Friday for a few weeks now we have been having an activity named Mormon Night, where our investigators and members get together for a spiritual message, and for games etc.  It is really a success.
This Saturday I had my last interview with President Crapo.  It was sad!  Haha.  He talked about dating, marriage, how to stay strong holding on to the iron rod to be able to return to the Celestial Kingdom.  It was really good.  We shared goals and experiences, and attributes.  I broke down near the end though.  He said "well Elder, you've served well..." and I just started bawling.  Haha he said that that is a good sign because the mission has helped me changed, and that the love that I feel is a confirmation that the Lord has accepted my offering.  It was great.  I feel sad though.  After that for the past few days I just feel sad, and kind of empty.  It will be really hard to leave.  I cannot believe the time is here.  Oh well.  I'll get over it.

So here is my schedule for next week before I head home. On Sunday, we head to the capital.  Then on Monday we get to go to central market etc. to buy stuff to bring home and say goodbye to areas.  Then Tuesday, we will have a big lunch with President, and then go to the temple.  Then we spend the night at the assistants’ house to sleep.  Then the DAY… Wednesday at 4 in the morning, we go to the airport.

I love you guys, have fun and have a good week!

From las escobas nature walk/park:
Found a new pet.  He really likes me.

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

2015-07-13 & 20: Rise Up O Men of God

Hey guys, well this week went by fast... like normal.  Monday we just played soccer in the hot sun here, but the highlight of my week was Tuesday.  We had a conference with President Crapo.  We woke up at 2 in the morning to get on a bus and head to an area called Chiquimula.  The conference was great.  It was based on a talk that I wished I had read ages ago called "Becoming a Consecrated Missionary" or something like that given by Tad R. Callister.  He talked a lot about how the culture of the mission is being affected by the culture of the world and Central America.   Presidente shared much concern about how the mission and the missionaries are going down the drain because some missionaries are being sucked up in the things of the world. 

Things Have Really Been Cooking Lately
President emphasized the phrase "Men of God".  He said, now is the time to lay all of our sins, weaknesses, and bad things aside and sacrifice them upon the altar.  We must become Men and Women of God.  We cannot serve 2 masters, we cannot have one foot in the world and one foot following God.  We must "decide now whom we will serve". 

There are so many heroes and men of God that I look up to in the scriptures and in my life.  Captain Moroni, and his righteousness, Nephi and his faith, the 2000 stripling warriors and their integrity at all times, Abinadi in the face of death, Joseph Smith, my parents, Leaders, and finally my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 

We are born in this world but we need not be on it.  Jesus was tempted of all kinds of sins and temptations, but he did not act upon them.  Like the hymn says "Rise Up O Men of God",  We must rise up, and leave the darkness of this world. 

As a mission we have started a "40 day fast" see the JST of Matthew of the fast of Jesus.  We started fasting on Saturday and we each think of 2 or 3 things that we are willing to sacrifice and do away with, weaknesses, sins, etc.  And for 40 days we work hard to avoid and eliminate all things that associate or invite those things in our lives.  At the end of the 40 days, we should have our weaknesses become our strengths.  Each of us have things that hold us back and keep us in the world.  Let us sacrifice these things and leave them behind.  We are greater than we think or know, and the only thing that limits us is our personal righteousness.  

I love all of you and I testify these things.  Just in these few days avoiding and thinking about these things has helped me a lot.  Have a good week!

Another Service Opportunity.
Hey guys!  We are seeing a lot of blessings as the days go by because we have been having investigators going to church.  One of the people that we are teaching her name is P and she is suuper old!  Haha she could be my grandma, but she is doing really well with the lessons.  It is funny because every time we go and visit her she likes to sing Christian rock songs to us and stuff, because she grew up in another church, but she is really progressing and wants to know the truth. 

That family that we reactivated of 11 people is doing good and the girl that we are teaching that is the girlfriend of one of the sons of the family wants to get baptized and married to him, so we are hoping that all goes well with them.  Keep them in your prayers! 

Other than that things have been good... just working hard and enjoying the time.  All the missionaries are starting to say "it smells like death here!" whenever I walk in the room, but I just want to work!

Haha I love talking to people and getting to know them.  Haha I think it will be hard to get back and speak in English because I don't know how to speak it anymore.  Hermana C one of the sisters in the district, one night this past week, when I called for daily numbers, was saying "my tonsils hurt." and I was saying "you didn't get them taken out?" and she kept saying tonsils, tonsils and I just kept thinking wisdom teeth, wisdom teeth.  Haha so we had a conversation about what are tonsils and then it hit me that she wasn't talking about wisdom teeth.

I am completely lost when talking in English now!  Haha oh well.  My comp says Hi and I am doing great! Have a great week guys! I love you all!
One of many horses in a recent parade in town.

Thursday, July 9, 2015

2015-07-06 Great Lessons in A Spiritual Place

Hey guys! Well, glad to hear that everything is alright there.  This past week has just flown by.  We have been working hard, and trying to find and teach as many people that we can.  We have been teaching this family that we found this past week and last Monday, we found and met the father of the family when we were going to another place in the zone in a taxi. 

As missionaries, we are encouraged to always talk to all the people that God puts in our path.  He is a taxi driver and responded really well to our questions and to what we said.  When we asked if we could come and visit him, he said sure and was super happy about it.  When we visited them they were super receptive to the message and are progressing.  They said that they have been looking for a church to go to and they felt that their prayers were answered when we came.  We were super happy!

All in all the week went by really well.  Time goes so fast that I forget at times things that have happened.  I have to write them down in the night so not to forget.  Well haha I don't have much to say this week... so many things going on.  Stay strong.  Say your prayers, and keep it up. 

I love you guys and have a good week!


Hey guys, this week went super great!  My comp and I are getting along pretty well.  We have learned a lot this week about the work and how we can improve. 

Presidente Crapo wants us to implement more contacts on the street and go house trackting.  He wants us to talk to all the people that we see and be bold about it.  Get to know them and help them feel the spirit.  So we have been trying to do that.

We had a fairly good amount of investigators in church yesterday.  That made us very happy and we are seeing a lot of blessing in their lives.  There is a family of 11 that came to church for the first time together in many years and we were super glad to see them in church.  They were very active before and some of them served missions but went inactive.  So we have been working with them to get them reactivated.  We are also teaching the girlfriend of one of the son of the family and we are seeing a lot of progress with her too. 

Today we got to go to see the ruins and ancient sculptures and artifacts of the Mayans (Lamanites).  We had a good time.  Two zones (Zacapa and Puerto Barrios) met up together and went to see the ruins.  It was very interesting place.  We got up at 5am and got there at 8am.  The place was very peaceful and got to study our scriptures while we were there. 

I was reading Helaman in the Book of Mormon.  As I was reading about how Nephi the son of Helaman is in his garden tower telling the people of their wickedness and problems and reminding them to change their ways otherwise they will be destroyed.  All I could think of when we were looking at the ruins “of how could a great civilization like that just go down the drain?" And first thing that comes to my mind was because of PRIDE!  It is very sad to think about it.  We all have to beware of pride!  All throughout the Book of Mormon, you will see that Pride kills!  Pride destroyed the people in the Book of Mormon. What we must do is look to the Savior like the people in the times of Moses who were saved from the poisonous snakes.

Satan is always attacking us, our cities, our families and our communities.  We can see that in the government now with same sex marriage.  I can tell you that once the voice of the people and the government leaders chooses evil, speedy destruction soon follows.  Our prophets have said that over and over again. 

Let us repent and read the signs of the times.  Let us not be like the hypocrites and the Pharisees that could read the weather but not the things happening around them.  Let us cast off our sins and pride and be strong in this time so that we as the people of Zion do not end up like these ruins, desolate and a whisper in the dust testifying of a once great people gone badly. 

I know that the Book of Mormon is true.  The only thing that can save this dying world in sin and our souls nowadays is the restored g√≥spel and the teachings of the Book of Mormon!  Let us learn from the mistakes of this people and live as the Lord wants us to be.

I love this work and I will surely miss it.  I am so happy being part of His work.  There is no greater blessing than being a missionary.  I love you all. Take care!