Sunday, September 25, 2011

Via Lactea

Favorite Spanish phrase of the week: Vìa Lactea. The Milky Way. We got a ride back from San Lucas last night in a convertible. When you're in the pockets of highway between hotels and cities, the stars are really a sight. The black ocean made me feel like we were just driving at the edge of an abyss.

New fruit (or vegetable!) of the week: Betabel. Or beets. I felt like I have never really tried it before. Rating: Better on salad. Also, 5/10. With Tony's spice, 10/10.

We're working a lot with Sarahì in preparation for her batismal service! That will take place between the sessions of conference on Sunday. She's really funny and is just progressing and learning everything well. Earlier in the week we had a zone conference in San Lucas with President Cantù, which was great. I came out of that with an improved understanding of the purpose of trial and our Heavenly Father's keen ability to understand us and our needs. If we do our best, even though it may be far from perfect, that is acceptable for Him. He asks us to endure difficulties and knows that they are exactly what we need. If we are obedient and diligent, even without understanding exactly why, He accepts our effort.

We've been finding a lot of cool new people, but we've had a lot of trouble finding them afterwards... That tends to be a problem if they are going to progress. Sometimes we just can't find them when they're home, or sometimes they don't want to be found, or sometimes we do divisions and we can't find the house of the people they found while I was gone. Whatever it may be, we're looking for people who really are prepared to recieve our message, who want to come closer to the Savior and who want to really progress in the Gospel.

We were walking to the ciber just now, and we heard a weird sound in a trash can. A huge dog jumped out and nearly took out Elder Crabb. Mèxico.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Dia de Independencia

We had a really cool ward activity on Friday for Mexico's Independence Day. Mexicans seem to be really patriotic, so it made for a really fun time. We ate helotes (the thing that that skeleton guy throws in that other guy's eye in Nacho Libre), did our best to mouth the national anthem, and I'm pretty sure I pledged to defend Mexico a few times. There were some dances, skits, darts, and lots of food. I lost very badly at darts (only one of them actually stayed in the board).

We've found a few really great new people this week. One is Ana, who is a good friend of Sister Pacheco, a recent convert. The first time we arrived, she just started getting out chairs for us before we had said anything. She's really cool, but she brings her kids to visit their dad in prison every Sunday, so they can't really make it to church. We're trying to find some way that she can come, but it doesn't look totally possible. But, we always met Saraì, who was able to come to church. All of her family members are members of the church, but she just didn't get baptized somehow; however, she wants to get baptized! We're the perfect guys for the job.

New favorite Spanish word: "rocanrrolear" = to rock 'n roll.

Monday, September 12, 2011


New fruit week: Guayabas (new for Elder Crabb, anyways). Guavas in English. I give them an 8/10. Elder Crabb gives them a "better than nanches."

I had the awesome opportunity to visit Sinaloa for the capacitation in Culiacàn. We boarded a tiny Cesna in the wee hours, which meant we had a red ocean sunrise. Really, really cool. I realized that my camera was in the cargo hold, and then I realized that it was one of those incapturable mission moments: being with sleepy Mexicans on a tiny plane by the light of a Lion King sun over the Gulf of California. I was there for two days, and got to see some old friends (a few missionaries from my generation are training missionaries from Elder Crabb's generation) and meet a lot of new Elders who I hadn't seen before. It was a great learning experience. I think one of the biggest lessons I learned was the importance of faith. Everything is based in it. The "animo" that I have for the work is based on my faith. A fin de cuenta, the success that I see is based on my faith and diligence and trust in the Lord. We also instituted something kind of new: in a first lesson with investigators, we're basically like, "Hey, this is the Book of Mormon! Let's read it right now!" and then we read the first 12 verses of first Nephi, in which Lehi prays, is given a book and feels the Spirit while reading it; it's a pretty cool parallel for what is happening in the life of the investigators in that same moment.

I had a really fun birthday. We worked really hard. I didn't even have time to open my packages by the end of the day. On Sunday, the Vega family made me a fruit and graham cracker cake!

I spoke in Sacrament meeting. I related the stories of Newel K. Whitney and the prophet Jeremiah and talked about how the Lord prepares us to accept the responsibilities he gives us. I also talked about Amalia, from Costa Rica, and about how the Lord had prepared her to recieve the Gospel.

Elder Crabb and I are having a lot of fun. We're staying together for this next change and have big plans to improve the area.

Shout-out to Oliver for being super awesome.

Monday, September 5, 2011

A Cow.

This morning we had a really cool zone meeting in San Lucas. Our zone leaders taught a few concepts about missionary work, but applied them in a really cool way. My mission is part of my preparation for... everything afterward. Life and beyond. So, the better I handle my current responsibility, the better I will be as a father, and the better I will handle my responsibilities in heaven. It was cool. I'll do everything I can right now to help those who I can, but also to grow and become better for future callings.

A few weeks ago, we had an appointment with this guy, Edmundo, but couldn't find his house. We found it during this last week, and we when got there he said, "Hey! What happened to you guys? I made ceviche!" So we missed out on some good ceviche, but we made sure that he didn't miss out on the Gospel. He was really interested in what we taught about the Book of Mormon, and has a few friends who are members.

This week, I'll be going to "seminary" again in Culiacàn. That should be really fun and even more edifying.