Wednesday, June 25, 2014

The Birthday

Happy Fathers Day Dad! Many times, it takes living without something to really begin to appreciate its worth. But, this is one of the biggest blessing that the mission has provided me. I have been able to realize in particular how big of a blessing I have been given to have been born to Smokey the Bear and Dino the Dinosaur.  I must have been a top notch guy in the preexistence to have been sent to this treasure trove for parents.  I am looking forward to quite a bit of golf with my ol`pops in 2015.

This week Eulaio was baptized. The second interview was very enjoyable.  He is finishing up Alma right now in the scriptures and is already seeing his family reform itself.  He asked me if after the baptism he could have some time to offer a personal prayer and thank God for what he has given him. He was baptized by one of my favorite members in the area. So it was a fun one. 

One of our investigators was talking to his friend about us and the friend said, "hey watch out for them missionaries, they just want to baptize you because they receive 1000 Pesos for every baptism." The investigator thought about it and said to us, "well if its true at the very least you could give me 20 percent!"   ha

The bishop is a solid man here and one thing that is great is that he often refers to himself as "the bishop." He speaks in the 3rd person: "The bishop is hungry."  "The bishop needs to head out now because he has a meeting."

For the B-day we bought pizza and a neighbor / less active member that we are reactivating came over and we had a good time. We kicked him out after a short time and went to bed at 10:30! ha

Half of the group is the pres of the relief society and her husband - the elders quorum president. They are practically the only members in our area (the sister missionaries have them all on their half) but they are some of my favorite people.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

New Digs

We switched areas with the Sister missionaries last Monday because their area was "dangerous." They will continue living in their old house because it already sits within our old area. We were going to a new house. The zone leaders were the one in charge of finding a new house in this area but were having a hard time accomplishing that and because of the pressure to do the exchange on Monday, they accepted the first on they found.  Yippie =)  
well it turns out the most dangerous part of the house are the ants.  They have a colony under our house and swarmed the new comers like philistines.   I woke up one night to them squirming all over me. We had to take precautions with our food, because they went at any sign of a crumb. This is a pic of the bread that my comp taped to the door to keep it from being swarmed for the third time.  We bought poison and went to work. Pretty soon we had piles of dead ants filling the corner of our house. V for Victory!!!

The house also doesn't have "protection" which refers to the metal bars which every house has here so that people cant rob the house. when i first got mexico i thought that that was weird and unnecessary. now I am dying to have it. we are thinking about buying a rooster to defend the house, because we don't want a dog. =D 

On Friday i had exchanges with Elder Jimenez. He Looks just like my bud Hefe Martinez. He is a super smart guy. He graduated from high school when he was 15. Super solid.

My comp is great. We are easy friends.  One thing though that i find funny about him is that he believes every missionary/Mormon wives tale and is always telling me them. =D  He also exaggerates them and makes some up so I didn't want to be left behind so jumped onto the bandwagon and started trying to one up him. Now every time that he tells me one I throw out one of my own, about how "the time when the missionaries apartment burned down and they barely made it out alive and on inspection every part of their skin was burned except where their garments covered!"    he eats it up!    He is also super in love with Megan.  ha and he wanted her email. I wasn't so sure if she would want that so I gave him sam leathams email saying that that is her nickname and she has a different father so different last name.  I try to avoid lying in general, but sometimes i postpone the truth....=)

we knocked on a door and nobody answered so we knocked a little louder and we hear " I'm coming" shouted from one of the rooms inside. seconds later a teen age boy showed up at the door having just ran out from his shower, sopping wet and covered in soap in a towel.  haha

We were knocking on a door last week and a youth from across the street came over to us and started talking to us. My comp went on with the conversation like normal so i thought he knew him, then we asked if we could share a quick message. one the way over my comp came me the face: "do you know this kid?"   ha nope. well he is a member but hasn't gone to church for a year since his mom and siblings went to Texas.  he is 21 years old and lives alone in his house which is a nice house so he is set. we took him to church with us and he really enjoyed himself.
We eat with members for lunch everyday, but the problem is that the families are in the other part of the ward most of the time and so we have to take the bus. the ride straight from our house wouldn't take that long but we take a huge detour so we get a good half hour ride. I read most of the time but the buses are super rattly so sometimes it just doesn't work so i take advantage and catch up on my sleep....until it rattles me out of my seat. =)

Its pretty nuts here with the world cup. We get updates from the children.   I don't really know why but all of the children call me poncho here which is the nick name for fransisco. 
I held the intereiw for Eulalio. He will be baptized on my birthday! woot woot
We had a meeting with President this week. He is taking off in 15 days! 

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Still on the Move

We had a good week and the new comp is great.  With my last comp I hadn’t said anything to the President or to anyone to try to get rid of him. On the contrary I told my pres that he was a solid elder and helped me a lot, which was true. He was not the easiest person to be around but heck, I’m not going to be the whiney elder that is complaining to the President.  And most the time we did get along and plus it’s good for me to have comps of all sorts. The mission is a refining fire – right? And I know that you guys really  pray that ill have hard comps and impoverished areas ;)  The new comp is from Honduras. Name is Elder Lobo (wolf).  We get along great.

In my district there are 4 hermana misionaries. One of the areas where the hermanas are is dangerous so they are having us switch areas with them.  Ha, great idea.  So, after just one week here we are packing up again. My comp has 18 months in the mish and the funny thing is that his first area in the mish was the area where we are going today. But he was only there for two weeks because while they were walking through a park the Gangs here started a gun fight with the police in that very park. They had to dive under parked cars for protection. He is excited to be back....

Also, the funny thing about this area is that when I got here they told us that we were going to do the area switch, so I didn’t work to hard at learning the area. Then they told me at the beginning of last week with the transfers that we weren’t going to do the switch. Sooo, I busted my tail (and my feet got a few blisters) to learn the area really well. Ha - now we are heading out.  Them folks just like fooling with the white guy.

*We contacted a woman and she agreed to have a lesson in front of her house. She was about 70 and very Christian. It was a fun lesson because she got really into it but we didn’t quite convince her. At the end we asked her to say the prayer and she eagerly agreed.  She started praying in tthe traditional Baptist way, she started more quietly her praises and then quickly got louder with lots of hallelujahs and then at climax she started speaking in tongues!! Then she put her hands on our heads!!   I almost fell out of my chair.  

Bishop's Birthday Party

The sad thing about the change will be leaving Eulalio. He is already in 2 Nephi and there was a baptism this week from another area and we invited him and he showed up 30 minutes early to see it. He will be baptized on my birthday. We were in the car shop with him one evening, which is just what you would expect a car shop to be like; filthy with filthy people. There are cigarette butts and alcohol and men with dirty mouths.  In one room, not where we meet they have the expected posters (dirty), and there are dirty animals that roam around.  But as we were sitting there talking, all of that fell away as the spirit filled the room with a feeling a peace and joy. It was very distinct and very memorable. Those experiences are very personal because down the road I will be able to look back on that experience and feel the same joy. It was very much my experience and nobody else’s. The other men in the other mechanic shop didn’t feel anything similar and maybe never have. But now it’s an integral part of who my life and Eulalio’s.  Neat memories!

We contacted some people this past week and asked them if they knew a certain man who lived on the street. Nope. O well so we asked if we could teach them. They said that we could come and talk with them. Then they talked to us about buying their funeral services. This included the coffin, the burial, the clothing... We put there flyer on our wall next to the warning notice that the church sends listing people of risk that we should watch out for,  just in case right....

One night at ten we were in our apartment and this old man passed by our house and knocked. I opened the door and realized it was hermano Evia, which is one of my favorite people I have ever known. He is a member and always has riddles and jokes waiting for me. He said "hey i saw your lights on" and just walked into the house. Ha, he is a goofball. He didn’t want to go home and didn’t have anywhere to go so he came for a visit. It was one of the more enjoyable nights of my mish. When I told him yesterday that we were changing areas, he said "oh no! Give me a hug then."      

Love you guys!