Monday, October 21, 2013


First, I´ll answer the questions that Dad asked:
-What kind of superstitions do the people have?
   One thing that they do that is wierd is for two days after halloween, on November 1st and 2nd, they have a holiday called Día de los Muertos (Day of the dead). What people have told me is that the spiritual world and our world are the closest on those two days. And to honor their ancestors that have died, the put food in front of their houses as an offering. Then after the two days are over they eat the food.
   The other thing is the Virgin Mary. All of the catholics here believe that Mary answers their prayers. And just about everybody in this part of Mexico is Catholic. About 95 percent of the people here are catholic and they really aren´t open to learn about anything else.
-Besides nuttela, is there any other food item mom should send?
   Well, nothing that would be able to get her safely from the US.
-Do they have dreams they tell you about?
   yes. I believe that I told you about "O...." a bit, the crazy christian lady. She always tells us about her dreams. some good examples of what her dreams are: A tree talked to her and told her where to go, she dreamed that her husband tried to kill her (and she said that the next day it happened), she dreamed that she should not join the church of the Jehova´s Witnesses. Later she told us that while she was in the bathroom, the voice a woman came from her shower, whispering her name. I´ll tell you more of her dreams when she has more, but "O" is an extreme example. other people have dreams and things, but not nearly as much as her.
-Do the girls flirt?
   not really. Sometimes, in mocking tones they try to speak English (all that they know how to say is "Hello, how are you? my name is ...")

Right now, I feel like I can understand most everything and I can say without trouble everything that I need, the only thing that I lack is my accent. Sometimes I say something or ask a question, and the person doesn´t understand, so they look at my companion, and in the exact same wording, he repeats what I just said. It´s pretty funny. I guess with time my accent will fade.

Something about missionary work is that improvement comes with time. If we are doing everything we can to improve everyday, over time... we will be awesome! But if we are not doing everything we can to improve, we will see little or no progress over the course of long periods of time. The reason we left our heavenly home with God to come here to the earth, is to become more like Him, to progress a little bit at a time until perfection. But we can´t do that without Christ.

Well, I love you all! Thank you again for your letters and encouragement!

Until next week!!
Elder Davis

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Week of October 14th

Well yesterday I had to give a talk in church for the first time in the mission. I decided to talk about obedience to our ward. One of the things that I shared was that we obey because we love God and we love our neighbor(see Matthew chapter 22) and that all of the laws and commandments given to us are based on this love. You can measure how much you love God by how obedient you are. I think the talk turned out alright, and I didnt mess up too many times in Spanish!

Right now, we have a lot of investigators that have so many problems. For example: We haven´t seen our investigator Angel for about a month, maybe more; Olga separated from her husband that used to beat her but she keeps going back every Sunday to talk about their problems rather than attending church; Alejandro is a flake, we always set appointments with him but he isn´t there; we have one investigator, Georget (11 years old) that wants to sin more before she gets baptized... and so on. Missionary work is difficult, but they all need a lot of help coming to Christ and that is what we are here for. The work is difficult, but the truth is, there isn´t anything in the world that I would rather be doing right now!

By the end of this week, I will have been in the mission for 6 months! that is already a 4th of the mission, I know that it doesn´t sound much but it went by pretty fast!

ever since the day I got here in mexico, it has rained almost everyday... but I think that it is almost over! Almost everyday it rains a bit, but every couple days it pours super hard. One of those days was tuesday when we were walking home from a little bit far away (like 20 minutes walking). It started to pour harder than I have ever seen it rain in the states. When it rains that hard there is really nothing that you can do to keep dry. I was wearing a rain jacket, but my companion and I got soaked so bad! It was pretty funny. At first we were running through the rain to get home faster, then it got to the point that we couldn´t have gotten any wetter, so we just walked through flooded streets. That happens every once in a while. It is always pretty funny

But... yeah the mission is awesome! I feel like I have progressed faster in these 6 months than in any other time in my life! I just have two request for the package that you are going to send me: The ties that I have in one of the bins in the basement, and a jar of Nutella. And yeah, every once in a while a handrwritten letter would be awesome... but it takes like 2 months to get here.

Thank you all for the letter I love you all so much, you are an awesome family!

Until next week,
Elder Davis

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Pictures for week of October 7th

Week of October 7th

This was a pretty good week! I recieved a new companion, Elder Fonseca. He is a pretty great missionary. He has been in the mission for 7 months (only a little bit more than me). Elder Fonseca is from Monterrey, Mexico (the same place as my last companion) and we get along pretty good and we work good together. I am still in the same place as where I began, Atempan ward, Chiautempan Stake in the Mexican state of Tlaxcala.

Today we and some other missionaries in our District went to small taco restaurant. This place had a lot of wierd tacos on the menu: Eye tacos, brain tacos, cow-head tacos, and cow tongue tacos, and then some normal tacos. So I decided to try an eye taco (see picture) and another Elder from Idaho decided to try a tongue taco. The eye taco just tasted like chewy goo with salt and salsa it was interesting, but not bad. I still dont know which animal the eye came from, but I would think that it would taste the same coming from any type of animal.

Now I have a little story to share. On Wednesday, I and Elder Fonseca went to visit Herman Norma, a 70 year old sister in the ward. There is a rule in the mission manual that says that we cant enter any house if there is not an man with us or in the house, even if the situation doesnt seem like it would be a problem. Norma was in the house with her two grand daughters, so told her about the rule and then she told us that her son-in-law was going to be in the house the next day, thursday. So on thursday, we went back to visit her, and we found her and a friend of hers in the house too (the son-in-law was in the house sleeping). So we taught her friend and she now wants to hear more about the gospel. The point of the story is that if we stayed and taught Norma on wednesday, disregarding the rule (and remember that she is 70), we wouldn´t have found her friend the next day.

The Lord blesses us when we are obedient. But we won´t know the blessings of obedience until we are obedient (I believe David A Bednar talked a bit about that Saturday at the General Conference).

The conference was awesome over the weekend. Luckily, for the English-speaking missionaries, we were able to watch the conference separately in English. President Monson is the prophet of God in these days. God still speaks with us, His childern today just as much as he did in Biblical times. Just as Dieter F Uchtdorf said: the fulness truth is here, the priesthood is here, forgiveness of sins is here, and we invite all to join!

Well thank you all for the letters this week! I am glad that all is going well at home! Good luck with everything! Until next week!

Elder Davis

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Letter From Shane, week of October 1st

This week was an interesting week. Tomorrow I am going to recieve a new companion, but I am still staying in the Atempan Ward. But I wont have any idea who he is until tomorrow. But its alright, Elder Alejandre has been my companion for more than 4 months, which is a little longer than usual.

Now to answer your questions:
1. We want to know more about the people there: are they poor, what is the typical lifestyle and how does it different from us?
-The area that i am in right now is one of the richer areas in our mission, but the standards of living are a bit lower than they are in the states. The average house is small, has two floors and an accesible roof. everything is concrete, carpet is pretty rare, but the carpet that does exist is old and gross. Not many people cars, and most of those that do have cars cant afford to fix them or maintain them. They dont maintain the roads very well. 
2. How far do you have to walk everyday.
-We walk just about everywhere, i think we walk 5 or so miles everyday. There are some places that are a bit too far to walk, so we talk something called a combi. Combis are these vans that are everywhere, they are just a little bus, you pay them $5.50 pesos (which is less than 50 cents in US dollars) and they drive us. But over all, we walk alot.
3. We want to know more about the weather. Does it rain? is it hot, humid, etc.
-Right now, it rains a lot just about everyday, when the sun is out, it gets a little bit hot, about 80 or 85 degrees, and it gets a little bit cold at night. I believe that the rainy season is gonig to end in October or November.
4. What is your favorite food there?
-I like just about all of the food here, but it is really different from the states. We eat one of four or five things just about everyday. Pozole: this soup that the make out of corn, I have no idea what they do to the corn but it looks like teeth. Milanesa: which is chicken that they somehow flatten down to be really thin. Often they chicken and salt into boiling water and give it us. And carne asada, which is just cow. we eat every one of those meals with corn tortillas and salsa
5. do you have to cook sometimes, if so what do you make?
-We almost never cook... I sometimes make eggs or pancakes, sometimes I make a sandwich, but that is about it.
6. Have you gained any weight, or have you grown any? Are you able to work out ever?
-I haven´t seen a scale since i left the MTC in Utah, so I really dont know, but I dont think that my weight has changed much. I exercise sometimes in the morning, but not as much as I should.
7. Are there any foods you are craving from back home?
-Everything home cooked.
8. what do you want for Christmas, if we are able to send a package? 
-I would be happy with anything. But I also left a lot of my ties at home in a bin in the basement... I getting bored of the same 10 ties that I have because that is the only variety I have in what I wear.
9. Have you had to use your atm account or anything? Are you surviving on the money they give you.
-No, I haven´t had to use it yet, I am doing alright with the money that we get.
10. Are you starting to like mexican music?
-Not really. All of the mexican music includes a tuba, an accordion, and a singer with a wierd voice, its kind of wierd. 

Well everything is going pretty well. I hope that all goes well with the company (freaken obama). I used up my hour typing and answering the questions. Next week I´ll tell you who my new companion is. The gospel is true! Jesus is our savior and this his one and only true church and he will come again in His glory... soon (that is exactly what the world needs right now)!

Elder Davis