Sunday, September 22, 2013

...what appears to be a sacrifice

"You will come to know that what appears today to be a sacrifice will prove instead to be the greatest investment that you will ever make."  Gordon B Hinckley

"Its A Fiesta"

Everyone survived the weekend of "Mexican Independence Day".
The Country is decorated in the traditional green, white, and red. 
Elder Iverson and Elder Loayza are getting into the spirit!

"The Lord Will Help Us If We Are Faithful"Elder Katich

First baptism in two months. We are so proud of Elder Maravilla -Elder Katich .

Sweet Is The Work

Elder Poulsen and Elder Dove with their newest convert. This little boys father was reactivated recently by these two Elders and was able to baptize his son. There was a huge turnout by the ward in support of this family. Some powerful testimonies were shared which strengthens my own ten fold. He was confirmed this Sunday in sacrament meeting. The Bishop presented the family with a Family Home Evening Book, and the little boy with new scriptures and a Children's Primary Song Book. Elder Poulsen even scrubbed the font on Saturday by hand so it was in pristine condition... Impressive!
Also two other companionship's stayed late after church to assist in a special baptismal musical number. It was absolutely beautiful and they sang part of the song in English / Spanish. Notice our New Elder Ford who had been in the mission one night thrown into the mix. He also led all the music for the baptismal program. He was such a good sport!

Family Home Evening

Elder Arnett- Tecamac II Zone Leader ..."I thought I would just share this picture. We have had amazing family home evenings in the Ward. We have been organizing them. We invited Elder Menendez and Elder Rodríguez to this one to see how they could do it to help their side of the ward. This was one we had this week. We had 10 investigators present, 2 recent converts and 6 less-actives from our side."

Have President and I mentioned how proud we are of these kids?! 

Who's Up For A Little Soccer?

This is a group of Elders playing soccer on Monday next door to the mission office. No one got hurt... thank goodness..... however -at a zone farther away Elder Oliver wasn't so lucky and ended up in the hospital ER with a severe sprain, crutches, and non weight bearing status for one week. What touched my heart was the care and concern of his companion and those in his zone. And a dear sister who drove him to the hospital and all the way back to their area, which is a significant distance. She refused gas money that the President offered 3 times; only reassuring us that it was a pleasure and blessing to be of service. As I hugged her and watched them drive away from the hospital I got teary as I was overcome with gratitude for the many members of our area who watch over, feed, house, and assist in circumstances such as this- with a humble heart and willing attitude. We are so blessed.

We checked on him today (Sunday) and he had taken off the soft cast of cotton padding and put a sock on for church and kinda re-wrapped it. What a great attitude! I told him he has swelling in his toes just like us old ladies who have "edema" in our lower extremities at the end of the day!

Happy Elders

Mondays are Fun Days

It is so fun to be in the office on Mondays as missionaries come in to get pouch (mail). Those that live close play a little soccer in the parking lot, missionaries request special interviews with President Egbert, they turn in receipts, pick up missionary supplies, take English Language tests, and work on college applications. Elder Ford met up with his new companion/trainer Elder Rincon. (top right)

Oh- We Come Prepared!

Before hiking up the wet and muddy trail for a baptism in Molango we show off who was prepared in the group! Yep, that's right. Elder Dove and Hermana Egbert have boots on. Hermana Egbert is more of a fashion statement but its his toned legs that makes Elder Dove win this showdown! It's those 630 am workouts with Elder Shillig and Elder Poulsen. 

District Meetings on Wednesdays

President and I attended Elder Zamudios district meeting. 
This group of 6 had great participation. 

District Meetings on Wednesdays

The assistants attended Elder Messick's district meeting- positive report on the day.

"President Egbert's and My First P-Day in the Mission"
So the President's Assistants and the Secretaries talked President Egbert into taking a Preparation Day on Saturday as a group to visit the TEOTIHUACAN  Pyramids. They decided we earned a much needed break from the daily schedule of the Mexico Pachuca Mission. I went thinking "a pyramid is a pyramid- once you've seen one you've experienced them all!" I was just excited to spend time in the sun and with our Elders and  Elder-Sister Ramos. But to my surprise.... it was amazing! I don't even know where to start. It is a city of Pyramids that has been uncovered which was once populated by more than 175,000 people. They claim only 7%  of what existed is now uncovered. It goes on forever; and YES I climbed to the top of the tallest one. THIGH BUSTER! In a skirt no less.....   Can't wait til all our Elders get to visit this historical site when they serve in areas that are in close proximity.
The Elders arranged for a seasoned tour guide (who is a member of the church) to lead us through and teach us about the history. So much of it is tied to the history of the people of the Book of Mormon. 

Our Amazing Secretaries.
Elder Huff (Finances), Elder Stucki (Training in Finances), Elder Campuzano (Visa's)

No need to comment here.
Just look at this group.
Elder Stucki, Elder Huff (front), Elder Poulsen, Elder Dove, Elder Campuzano

Our Missionaries stood out in their missionary attire- and that is why they are asked on P-Days to always dress as a missionary. Many tourists asked for pictures with the Elders. 

In Deep Thought

The tour guide taught in this particular spot for over 40 minutes. The missionaries were in deep thought and referred to their Book of Mormon often as he referenced many facts about this area. 
After our get away to the Pyramids we headed back home, showered and dressed up again where we took off for a two day Stake Conference in the Tezontepec Stake.

Tezontepec Stake Conference

President and I were privileged to be apart of this Stake Conference Saturday night and Sunday. President spoke in the Adult session Saturday night and to the youth Sunday morning at 8:00 am. The chapel was packed and the spirit of the youth was strong in that meeting. Because this Stake does not have a Stake Center and their chapel has no gym they met in a tent in the parking lot. I took a picture as people were filing in before the meeting started. President did a fabulous job speaking in all three sessions. We were privileged to meet an Elder De Antunano, an area seventy and his family, and President Ruiz and his spouse, the first counselor in the Mexico City Temple Presidency. President Lozano of the Tezontepec Stake and his presidency are special men and so gracious and welcoming. Their efforts in preparation for this stake conference was commendable. President Egbert was impressed with attention to detail and the overall spirit of the whole conference. They ended up setting up more chairs and had right at one thousand members in attendance in the tent! What a great way to wrap up and start a new week. President Egbert translated for me twice as I shared a message- to which I am so grateful he can help me at this point with that part. It was so good to see three companionship's of missionaries in this stake. I apologize as I didn't get their pictures taken. Elder Russell and Elder Enriquez- Elder Hurtado and Elder Unamuno- and Sister Diaz and Sister Laguna. Elders Russell and Enriquez actually had a baptism right after conference. We had another commitment so were not able to attend, but they promised me pictures for next weeks blog. 

A Time To Share from our Missionaries

  • So one time we were trying to contact a less active member and we knocked on the door and you could hear a lot of noise inside. We were waiting for somebody to come and let us in when we saw two little boys peeking at us from the window- when they saw us looking at them they started to giggle and tried to hide. I asked them if their grandma was home. I was only answered with more giggles until one of the boys chucked a note out the window saying nobody was home! We started giggling ourselves as we walked away. Elder Kearl and Elder Zepeda
  • So on Monday all four of our appointments fell through. We were discouraged and asking "why"? We were prompted to visit a part member family that we had an appointment with later in the week. We decided to go by earlier than scheduled. Her husband for twenty years had wanted nothing to do with the church, but after our visit this day invited us back and is interested in progressing in his knowledge of the restored gospel. Elder Arnett and Elder Hirst
  • We have two investigators that are faithful attendees of AA. Their commitments to attend those meetings has interfered with their ability to attend church. We often felt like we should drop them as we were not progressing because of their inability to attend Sunday meetings. However, we felt inspired to invite them to pray and ask God if they should be attending Sunday meetings and if he would be able to help them solve this dilemma  They got the answer they needed and now we have 3 baptismal dates for the 11th of October. This couple and their 9 year old son. God answers prayers and we learned to be more patient and ask for inspiration on how to help our investigators with their unique challenges. Elder Messick and Elder Leon.
  • So last Sunday we were summoned to the Bishops office to help translate for an American sister who lives in the ward but does not speak Spanish. We translated to the bishop her concerns, challenges, and fears. As the Bishop bore his testimony and tried to help her, the spirit came so quickly and was felt so strongly. It breached the language barrier, and she felt our Heavenly Fathers love. We know God placed  two gringos here because one of his daughters needed a hand at a crucial time. God is a perfect planner and we are involved now in helping her family come back into activity. Elder Cardon and Elder Beesely.
  • So this week last week we were feeling rather discouraged as our progress had been slow and our two investigators were not progressing. My companion and I decided we need to have a companionship inventory and pray specifically for help on how we could resolve our "stalled" progress and be better missionaries. We were inspired that we need to be "happier in the work" and that others would feel that change by the smiles on our face. We also felt inspired to encourage the Bishop to contemplate how our ward could move forward with the "Work of Salvation" and that the recorded broadcast of that might inspire him on the specific needs of our ward. AMAZING results. We felt happier in the work this week, our investigators felt it and are progressing, our ward members have given names of those who could benefit from our message, and today we had the best ever ward council meeting. We testify it was because we humbled ourselves, asked sincerely and specifically for help, and then when inspired acted upon it. We are feeling blessed. Elder Noriega and Elder Moreyra
  • So I have been praying for more opportunities to share the gospel as my time in the mission wraps up the end of this week. I have been diligently working  to give 110% until the very last moment in my service. My companion and I were on a  transport van with only the driver and one other lady. As we were traveling she began to ask us about who we were and what we did. We discussed things about the church and then she asked "What do you like about Mexico?" I responded that I love the Mexican food. She said that she would love to cook something special for us and invited us to her home for a further discussion about the church and for some great Mexican cooking. I am grateful Heavenly Father hears my prayers and knows the desires of my heart and placed us in the perfect situation to share the gospel with another one of his children. Elder Clawson and Elder Rodriquez

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