1. Mail. I have almost zero time to write letters, so everyone please bear with me!! I will try and get into the flow of writing letters every P-Day for those who write me. I can receive mail and packages, but I have to turn in a card before...so until I do that, I won't get any mail. Don't worry though, I will get it all eventually. Send all mail to the mission office.
2. Zaragoza. This is the name of our area. (Mom's note: Zaragoza is a suburb more north of downtown Mexico City)
3. Companion. Elder Cardona. He is from Columbia and is learning English. I help him with that. He is really cool and funny. We love to joke around and work hard.
4. Food. No street tacos yet!! I need to wait until my stomach settles down!!
Okay, experiences with teaching...this is my favorite part! The following is a list of experiences, from week 1 and week 2 here....in no particular order.
1. Victor is an investigator with a wife and little daughter. He was NOT baptized on the 17th...I was so disappointed...here is why: he needs an answer about whether or not the Book of Mormon is true, the church is true, and if baptism is the right path. As representatives of Jesus Christ, my companion and I promised two things. First, my companion said that his answers would come before the 17th. And I promised that the answers would come in the way that he needed. I know that both of these are true...so, if he was promised an answer, why wasn't he baptized? Well, I had a prompting earlier this week. It gave me comfort and worry. It said that even though the answer WOULD come, that doesn't mean he will be able to recognize it...I was comforted because it was confirmed to me that the answer did come. It worried me though because that also suggested Victor might not recognize it. That turned out to be true. Our next lesson with him will be about recognizing the Spirit.
2. Ian is a less active young man who is 17 years of age. His story is a sad one. I absolutely cried as I tried to teach and comfort him with my companion on the street one day. During much of this discussion, I just silently sobbed. I wanted nothing more than to help him. In this moment, I felt incredible charity. I wanted to do anything for him...I even thought to myself that I would die for him. He and I both cried on the curb as we tried to help him. He has many problems. He is a great kid, just has some struggles.
3. We have a new investigator named Junue. She has 3 kids, and her husband is the brother of an active member named Julio. I invited her to be baptized, to which she has accepted. The 31st of this month is the date.
4. Victoria. Investigator. Never seems to be home...or so we are told by those who live around her. We want to invite her to be baptized.
5. Geovany is less active. His mother died yesterday. My companion and I went to the chapel to give comfort. I don't know if I have ever seen such sorrow before in my life. Out of the bishop's office walked the daughter, Geovany, and a young teenage son of the mother. They were really sad. That was a new experience for me, to see that. But we gave hugs, only to the guys of course, and went back to work.
6. Anna Laura. She has a nonmember aunt. Once during a lesson, I felt prompted to ask these two if we could sing for them. They said yes. And we did. We sang "Creo en Cristo" (I Believe in Christ). When Anna said the closing prayer, she began to cry. That was a touching experience. We have used songs in other lessons as well, and it has never failed to invite the Spirit.
7. I have also had the opportunity to seal the annointing of oil on a child's head in Spanish. Also, we have taught twice in church. During the second hour, each Sunday, we teach less actives and investigators. That is fun, but rough because of the language...but I am greatly improving and loving it. Our ward is enormous...but only about 50 are active, maybe less...we have lots of work to do!!
Okay, here is a funny story!!
One day we came home, my companion and I. I saw something on my shoe and casually asked my companion what it was. We didn't think much of it. Then I saw the bottom of my other shoe...it was covered in mud! My companion yelled out the question IS IT POOP?? and I said no, of course not...then I smelt it...it was dog poop. These shoes are currently hanging outside our apartment, 4 stories above ground, in a plastic bag...I will clean them today....maybe! haha
Okay, here is a typical day...
Wake up at 6:30 and work out...sometimes I wake up late...from 7:00 - 8:00, we get ready. The shower is almost always freezing. The toilet is like a foot away from the wall so I have to sit all weird in order to use it. Anyways, at 8:00, we study...we study the gospel, and especially how it can bless the lives of all the people we will teach today. Then at 9:00 we have companionship study...we practice teaching each other, plan, other stuff, and then leave. Then we teach and teach and teach less actives, investigators, and we ask for referrals from active members. We are fed lunch at around two...then we teach some more. We get home at 9 or 9:30. We plan again, and then bed at 10:30. It is fun!
Language is coming along great. It is hard here in Mexico. I can speak relatively well, but I can hardly understand anything. Even simple phrases...they talk so fast! But I am improving.
Yo sé que esta iglesia es verdadera. Mediante de Jesucristo, podemos encontrar paz y gozo constantemente en esta vida. Dios nos ama. No podemos comprender el amor de Dios. Y sé que José Smith fue un profeta de Dios. Tenemos un profeta en la tierra hoy tambien. Dios quiere que nosotros sigamos el ejemplo de Jesucristo en todo que hacemos. Yo sé con toda de mi corazón que el Evangelio es el camino correcto. Encontraremos felicidad cuando vivimos segun a los principios de el Evangelio. Tengo en testimonio de la Expiacion. Jesucristo es nuestro Salvador, y morió para todas de las personas en el mundo. Yo lo sé.
I love you all and thank you for your love and support.
I will write to you next week!