Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas time is continuing to be really strange. Our whole zone had an activity last night - Christmas Day - where we all sang in the park. We set up a keyboard and mics and the whole shindig. It turned out pretty cool, and afterwards we had a table set up with a bunch of church materials, so it turned out pretty successful too. I think I've learned a lot this week. I've learned, in part, what it means to take upon myself the name of Christ. From what I understand, that means the my motivations become equal to His. That becomes reflected in my actions, my desires, my prayers, my success as a missionary. I've become completely preoccupied by my investigators, even down to when I'm sleeping. I've woken up a few times during the night and realized that I wasn't having dreams, I was just thinking things like: What should I teach the Juarez family? What members can I bring with Lupita? When I really take upon myself the name of Christ and work my hardest, we see lots of miracles.

This week we found the Ortiz family. One of their kids yelled at us in the street, asking what religion we were from. We put an appointment, and now they're preparing to be baptized. We visited a guy who's been going to church regularly for months with his family who are all members, and he accepted a baptismal date as well. So, we've got a lot of work to do, weve just have to continue working hard. Happy Christmas!

Also, I finished reading the Book of Mormon. We started a daily reading as a mission when I was in my first area, and we finally finished. But, it literally scared me to not be in the middle of the Book of Mormon, so I read Moroni 10 and then read the whole introduction up to 1 Nephi 2 in the same study.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Lemme splain

Lemme splain. No, there is too much. Let me sum up:

- Painting the new house of the Hermanas in Macapule. There were only 5 paint brushes for 8 missionaries, so I sat on the couch. That led to being dog piled by four portly Mexicans (and Elder Pearson).

- Stake Christmas Choirs. I got roped into three different choirs. It was really fun. The missionaries all sang Joy to the World, and I directed and yelled the tenor part. Elder Pearson and I sang... Campanas de Navidad, and threw in a bunch of key changes and sang a verse with no melody. I don't think anyone noticed.

- Baptisms. Giovany and Elva were baptized on Saturday. So dang cool. Giovany's sister is a recent convert. He's basically pulled a 180 from when I first met him (very grumpy) to right now (...bashful?). Elva is a woman that Elder Johnson and Elder Rendon contacted last transfer. She brought 5 grandkids (they seemed like 25) to the baptismal service, so it was pretty rowdy.- Recieved a foot rub from a Mexican mortician. ...that is all.

- I'm just super excited for Christmas. Elder Mendoza and I are getting along really well. I like Jardìn a lot. I'm starting to get to know the members pretty well - there's a ton. We're planning on having a lot of success during this transfer.

Hot dogs are okay even if you don't cook them.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Christmas Activity

We had an mission Christmas activity this week. It was great. All of the
missionaries in Sinaloa went to Culiacán for the day on Thursday. We played
dodgeball. I lost every round, except for the round of Mexicans vs.
Foreigners (we sang the national anthem). We also had a testimony meeting.
My favorite part of the activity was just being able to see all of the
missionaries and meet those who I hadn't before. It's important to me to
get to know all of the missionaries that I can; I feel bad whenever
missionaries finish that I never ran into.

We're teaching a family of a less active member, who is actually a return
missionary. He and his wife have two girls, one of which - Carla - is *super
* excited to be baptized. I love their family. We taught the plan of
salvation on Saturday, but we brought materials to color, and we all drew a
"map" with the different parts of the plan, starting in pre-earthly life
and following all of the steps to finish at the celestial kingdom. They're
acually the only people that we planned for in our weekly planning session
that haven't now been dropped, so we're nearly starting from the bottom up
right now in Jardín, but that's okay. We're excited to find new people.

Elder Mendoza is sweet. I'm teaching him English and he's teaching me
Chilango slang.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Piano fiend

Hi, I hardly have any time, but here are some photos. I'm now with Elder Mendoza from Veracruz. He is a piano FIEND, and a great missionary, but he kind of fell off the chart during transfers yesterday, so I didn't manage to write e-mails. Elder Mercado headed back to Culiacán. Love that guy. I should see him this week because the mission is going to Culiacán for a a Christmas activity. Things are going great.