Sunday, February 16, 2014

February 3, 2014

Hello everyone! Well, the news with the transfers is that I am staying here in the Teotlaltzingo with Elder Garrido, so no changes. I am pretty happy about that, because we have some pretty good investigators right now. One of them, Araceli, is supposed to get baptized this Satuday, but right now she is sick so we are hoping that she feels better by Saturday. I think that I have already told you guys but a couple months ago the leaders told us that in order to be baptized, investigators must attend church 5 times. so that makes it a little more difficult to baptized, but it also makes for stronger converts.

Today for Pday, we and some other missionaries went to a pyramid close by. We hiked up a little hill in the morning and found what they told us was a ancient pyramid, but it was pretty much just an ancient man-made mound of dirt. The pyramid wasn´t impressive but it´s cool to think that the Lamanites were here before we were. I attached 3 photos, one the pyramid, one picture of me and some wierd grafiti, and the other of a chiuahua with the worst little dog syndrome I have ever seen (it acts like it wants to kill us every time we walk by but is scared to get too close).

Yesterday our stake had conference, and our bishop decided to rent a van to take us (the missionaries) and all of our investigators to the stake conference (which is about and hour drive away). we needed the van because very few of the members here have cars, and the ones that do don´t have room because the put 2 or 3 families in each car (in mexico you can put as many people as you like into a car). We were only able to bring 2 investigators and 4 less actives; and the other missionaries in the ward  brought 3 investigators.

Anyways, my time is up. This week I am going to start writing handwritten letters and then I am going to send them when I can. Thank you for all that you do! I love you all!

Until next week!
Elder Davis

February 10th 2014

Well, good news! Araceli was baptized and confirmed over the weekend! One recent convert in the ward, Ruben, baptized her.But not without difficulties. The only fear that Araceli had about baptism was cold water, so as irony would have it, the hot water in the church stopped working. The water heater worked but hot water didn´t come out for some reason still unknown to me. So we ended up draining the water from the water heater into buckets and filling up the batismal font, but even after all that the water still wasn´t warm, so we baptized her in luke-warm water.

then the next day, one of the members went to pick her up for church in his car, but his car broke down, and they ended up walking to church. They got their just before sacrament meeting ended, just in time to be confirmed! It wasn´t easy but every thing came out alright. Every time their is a baptism, something goes wrong for some reason, there is always opposition. Araceli has always been a great investigator and she is going to be a strong member of the Church.

Also, we have been teaching a family in the ward that haven´t been very active. Every time we have invited them to church they have had some sort of excuse for why they couldn´t go. One day we taught them about the temple and being sealed for time and all eternity as a family, and they had a list of reasons why they couldn´t go to the temply. Then we gave the father, Aaron, the asignment to study and teach a family home evening on the Proclamation to the World, which teaches all about families. When we went back a few days later for the familiy home evening, he had completely change. He said that he had read the article, and something clicked in his head or something, but he said that he is determined now to go to the temple and be sealed to his family. And when we invited him to church he didn´t give any excuses! Through our personal studies, the Lord can enlighten our mind and give us more understanding!

And now to answer some of Dad´s questions:

1) which story in the Book of Mormon is most meaningful to you right now (if any) and why?
-Right now, I´d say the story of Ammon and his brothers when they went among the Lamanites. In Alma 26, Ammon talks about the joys that came from his success. The joy that comes from serving the Lord can only be as great as how hard you work, how much you sacrifice. Ammon is an example where he sacrificed everything, worked as hard as he could, and didn´t hold anything back from the Lord, his success and joy was proportional to his sacrifice.
2)I would like to know your biggest victories/success along with biggest frustrations.
-I described above one big success with Hermano Aaron and his renewed desire to follow the Lord and set the example for his family. After the struggle with Araveli´s baptism, there was a feeling of success. And we have one investigator, Isa, who is just awesome. She understands and accpets everything we teach, she loves going to church and learning, and she already has a desire to share the gospel already! She is planned to be baptized March 8th, along with her sister, Teresa, who is equally as awesome! One frustration we have had here is that the members of this ward are super challenging. They talk bad about eachother, they have trouble fulfilling their callings, and I worry about the future the converts sometimes. But I have also seen progress in the ward. with the help of a few strong members, they are getting better.
3)I would like to know which hymn is most meaningful in your life right now (if any).
-There is a hymn in Spanish that isn´t in English, its called "Placentero nos es trabajar" (It is our pleasure to work). It says somethings that relate with the mission directly.
4) I would like to know what miracles you are seeing  as a missionary?
-One miracle was with Hermano Aaron. One miracle is with this ward. When I got here this ward was dead. The members hardly ever went with us to appointments, we never had our weekly Missionary Coordination, or Ward Council. But with the help of the missionaries and the Stake Presidency here, the ward is beginning to improve.
5) your feelings about the Mexican people?
They are very friendly and easy to talk to, even if they have no interest in what we are teaching.
6) have you ever been stumped by another pastor?
-I have yet to talk with the leader of another church, but there are a lot christian churches here.

Anyway, my time is up. Looks like I wrote a little more this week. I hope you enjoy. I love you all and wish you all the best!

Until next week,
Elder Davis

Saturday, February 1, 2014

Week 1/27/2014

Buenas tardes! this week I now have little more time to write. So last week, when we climbed the mountain, we didn´t get all that far up. I would say that we still had 4,000 or 5,000 feet to the top, so that means we got to about 12 or 13 thousand feet up. That climb was a bit harder than the Malinche (the 14,000 foot I climbed a couple months ago) but it was pretty fun.

Friday morning we helped some members with their corn. What we did was scrape dry corn off the cobb into a giant bucket as you see in the picture. With filled up about two of those buckets with corn.

The next week is the end of the transfer, so I guess you guys know the drill by now, that next monday I will be able to tell you if I am leaving the area, or if I am recieving a new companion. In the next couple weeks we have 3 people that are going to be baptized, so if I leave the next week I am going to miss it. One of the investigators that is going to be baptized next week, Araceli (the blind investigator) is an investigator that was going to get baptized this Saturday but we had to change it because of the Stake Conference.

Today for Pday we went and played soccer with some other missionaries at a fake-grass field (I forget what its called). Compared to the Latin people, I really am not good at soccer, but it is still fun because there are other white guys that are worse than me.

Well, the mission is awesome! This whole transfer (6 weeks), we haven´t had much success but now we are starting to have a bit more. The mission is all about learning how to improve, work more efficiently, teach a more powerfully, and become more like Christ everyday. Something that I learned over the past couple weeks is that even when you have companions that are pretty difficult, you can still learn from each one of them, but it takes humility. You can´t learn if you aren´t humble. Even if someone corrects you in a prideful, contentious, or contemptious way, there is always something to be learned.

I am glad that all is well at home and that you guys are participating in missionary work. Now I just have somethings that I want you guys to tell me in your next letters:

What are the missionaries doing (or what have they done in the past) to work with the members in missionary work?
What are the members of the Branch doing to participate?
What have you guys done and what are you doing now to work in unity with the missionaries?

Well I love you all! I hope that you have a great week!
Until Next week!

Elder Davis

week of 1/20/2014

Buenas noches! Sorry for the lateness, we (Me, Elder Garrido, Elder Insaurralde, and Elder Strom) had the oportunity to to climb another mountain today, the 17,000 foot mountain that is in my area although, we didn´t have time to get even close to the top... but it was still pretty fun. I don´t really have a lot of time right to to talk so I will say what I can.

This is a great time to be a missionary because the Lord is hastening His work everyday. I feel like I am progressing so much and becoming a little better everyday. I am glad to see that you all are participating in the work! Look for ways to talk with more people everyday about the gospel and the Lord will bless you with success!

Sorry that I couldn´t say much today but I will talk more next week... pictures included.

Elderd Davis