Sunday, September 8, 2013

E Garcia, Teaching Christian, Zone and District Conference

This is a picture of the baptism of Carmen and Magda. Carmen is Magda's mom and the other girl in the picture is Lupita,  Magdas sister. If I look fat in the picture it is because I am.  Lupita is not a member. Lupita is 17 and Magda is 27

(from the mission blog we found these pictures and captions from zone conference)

Everyone is supposed to learn a new language. Spanish speakers are to learn English and of course English speakers are to learn Spanish. So we had a couple activities to encourage them in their learning, which they could also do in their companionships or as districts if both are native Spanish speakers.

In these pictures each person is taking turns reading the Book of Mormon in the language they are learning and the person they are reading with, corrects them on their pronunciation, It was a fun activity and I think we all learned something new.

The food:
We had these great hamburgers made by the wife of the branch president. They were really good!

And then Hermana Wagner (Hija) topped off the meal with these very cute cupcakes!

The Zone

We did not have time to do anything fun today, but it is funny how much you change while on a mission, I do not really care about doing a ton of fun things on p day now, I just want to wash, clean, and write to you guys. Cristian came to church yesterday, as did Carmen, and Magda, our recent converts. Angelica, Magdas friend could not come yesterday, and has been really sick, this week. We had a fun conference in Guzman yesterday and Juan Pablo and Emmanuel were there and I had a fun time talking to them. I had a wonderful time fasting this weekend as I have had many times lately. 

Cristian is a stud. He is first person I have taught in my mission that is about my age, and has similar interests, he is the kinda guy that I would have been friends with before my mission. He is related to Juan Manuel somehow and was a referral from him. We taught him the restauration this week and had a very spiritual lesson. He asked very good, very intelligent questions and understands very well. He has a speech problem, but only when he reads.   I can understand how he feels, seeing as I have to read in Spanish. He arrived at church at about 10 55 right at the end of sacrament meeting, and I was so happy when I saw him enter. 55 people came to church today, but many more stayed for the 2nd and 3rd hours than that normally do, that was totally awesome. We had way more people in Elders quorum than we ever had before, as well as in Gospel Principles class.

I bore my testimony, again, mostly on fasting. As much as I hated and refused to fast before my mission I love doing it now. It is so much easier to do it, when you are doing it for a specific purpose. I know that I am preaching to the choir telling you guys things that you already know, but for me I am just learning them. I fasted so that Cristian would come to church and for Angelica. Angelica is a friend of Magda. They work together at the Pharmacy, but rarely work together because they are always chatting. We taught her several times in the church this week and she has been really sick. She has colitis, some sort of stomach problem that she has had for 15 years, she is 30 years old, but could pass for 20. Hermana Munoz came to church and her husband did not. She shared her testimony and it was quite discouraging and startling what she said. Apparently she has dreamed that she is going to die while delivering her baby. She delivered Sol early and has had other stomach problems as well. We are going to visit her tonight. The conference in Guzman was a conference for all of the priesthood holder in Guzman.

The highlights of the conference were seeing my Guzman converts, the good, necessary, and ever direct talk of the district president, president Torres. It was the best talk that he has given in my time in this zone. As is his custom he chewed out he members.  We as missionaries, are protected from these direct comments except for the occasions when President Wagner is there ( the other members consider us to be angels, and President Wagner knows the truth, haha.)  President Torres talked about the oath and covenant of the priesthood and about paying fast offerings. About 140 or 150 people came to church yesterday in Guzman and the branch received 660 pesos of fast offering money, (like  4 or 5 pesos for each member, or in other words, like nothing)

The other highlight was Elder Turley, he is from Idaho, finishes his mission in December and is the President of the Sayula Branch in Sayula. His spanish is better than half of the latin people. His talk was easier to understand than the closing prayer. I have never heard an American speak spanish like him, other than President Wagner, who was born in Mexico. Elder Turley is a boy among men. I was not able to see hardly any Guzman members other than the Diaz Lopez family.

Zone conference went well, the test was really easy. I felt like my spanish was ok at times this week and bad at others. It rained like crazy this week and I have continued to do pushups like an absolute mad man. I read Nates letter and am not sure if it was really written by him. 

This is a picture of the baptism of Carmen and Magda. Carmen is Magdas mom and the other girl in the picture is Lupita, Magdas sister. If I look fat in the picture it is because I am. Thanks for the letters, they were very awesome and encouraging.

Cristian works in his family's store. Which is kinda funny, they sell catholic stuff. His brother and sister in law are really interested in the church as well, the other elders here in Tuxpan are teaching them. About Cheryl, I do not know for sure. Actually, the rule here is that you have to live the word of wisdom for one week before being baptized as well, but Carmen drank coffee less than a week before her baptism and did not tell us, but told Elder Mills in her baptismal interview, but elder mills felt like she was ready to be baptized and so he let her pass the interview, he said he has failed people before, so that was not the issue. Hna. Munoz is due in a little less than 2 months.

Lupita is not a member. Lupita is 17 and Magda is 27

My toes are great! I loved hearing about the Polynesian Elders in Nates letter, sounds like they are the exact same people as they were when I left. Do you remember the time when the fire alarm went off when I was in the MTC because a polynesian elder tried to iron his hair! It was totally awesome, I also remember seeing them at the vending machines rather frequently. O, and when they questioned him about the hair ironing incident, he pretended to not be able to speak english! haha. 

Everyone here is Catholic, 105 percent, it just does not mean much. We have been eating hamburgers fairly frequently with the neighbors of the other elders, haha, that is the good food that we have been eating. Oh, and for your information, during zone conference, my companion told pres. Wagner about a cool investigator that we found while hitchiking a ride and President Wagner took advantage of the situation to make it clear that we will never travel in a rides again, just so that you are not worried about that now, haha.

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