Friday, November 29, 2013

What a wonderful life- November 27, 2013

Happy Birthday Tommy!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
!!!!!!!!!!!!!! YAH!!! GO CRAZY! Invite Jabari Parker over for dinner or something. You can because its your birthday! And happy thanksgiving everyone! I am thankful for Villa Gonzalez and everything it offers to me. I LOVE IT HERE it is literally heaven on earth. I have never grown to love so many people in such a short amount of time.
This week was really different, not being with Elder Cannon. But we worked SO hard. We just worked and worked and worked and worked, I am so happy. We leave the house at 10, come back at 12 until 230, then go back out until 930. I walk fast, which is a little hard sometimes for my comp since he is short but we do it and we rock it. I was told that with Elder Villanueva I need to work hard, and Mom you would be proud. Also, I read in Mosiah 2 22-

22 And behold, all that he arequires of you is to bkeep his commandments; and he hascpromised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth dvary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do ekeep hisfcommandments he doth bless you and prosper you.

And I am using that a lot with my lessons. ALL HE WANTS OF US IS KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS! I love it. and that is what I am trying to do. I was in a lesson with our branch mission leader (his family is less active. His mom went to the temple and everything, but things happen and now we are working with them and also trying to get our mission leader to serve a mission) and I pulled out the Missonary Manual, and said -this is what the lord gives to us missionaries to become the best missionaries we can become. Only through this can we really realize our true potential as missionaries of the church if we keep the rules to the letter.- then I picked up the scriptures and said -this is what the lord gives us as his children so that we can realize our potential as children of God. only through keeping the commandments to the letter can we do it- AND ITS TOO TRUE! THE GOSPEL IS TRUE man I am pumped, commandments are too awesome. He wants to bless us. All we have to do is keep the commandments. 

Also, we taught our English class this week and it was great, we had about 15 people and 12 were hatian men. First we had them practice singing their ABCs and that was pretty great to hear all these guys doing it. Then we had them stand up and guess what we did! HEAD SHOULDERS KNEES AND TOES. Man it was too funny. I was cracking up. Somebody should have taken a video of that golden moment of life. 

We have 3 people on date this transfer to be baptized, the children of Gregorio and Chelo, a guy from the english class. Chelo is one of those things you call a GOLDEN INVESTIGATOR. It really shows the Lords hand in the work when you find such prepared people to recieve His gospel. He reads the Book of Mormon, is praying and told us that he REALLY would like to get baptized, he just wants to keep learning more. Elder Cannon was a little sad when he had to leave from teaching him, but Elder Villanueva and I are working hard to keep him going. When someone really is willing to read, pray and go to church to find their answer, you know the Lord will guide them. 

But yeah, it was a pretty regular week. The best week we have had so far, just like every preceding week. The mission only gets better and better, day by day and I am so thankful to the Lord that I have this chance to have a taste of His work and His glory. 

Oh yeah Andrew came up to Santiago, and President gave permission to come see me! We had lunch then saw the monument. He is pretty great, especially his spanish. He loved everything, and I was so glad to see him.

Love you all, eat lots, and See you soon.


1. Andrew and I in front of the monument

2. Elder Villanueva ON the monument!

Monday, November 25, 2013

The life- November 20, 2013

The Zone conference was really good! President Douglas has a way to speak so quietly and smoothly without raising his voice that makes you realize his authority and how he knows what he is talking about. MAN he is a great guy. ALL that was talked about during the zone conference was obedience, obedience, obedience. And priorities of whats more important, Christ or your family, your girlfriend, a personal cell phone, video games, sports, or anything. It went down hard, everyone (i hope) came out loving it and learning how to rededicate ourselves to the work.
My new companion is named Elder Villanueva! It was sad to see Elder Cannon go... he is a great elder and I learned a lot from him. But thats the mission, and I am excited for change. He is from Tiajuana Mexico, but knows a lot of English. I kind of wanted to have someone who knew no english... I need to work a lot on my spanish. I feel confident speaking, but I was hoping to HAVE IT DOWN asap but President knows whats best, I am excited. 

Nene and Miguel, from the branch, are both thinking about starting their mission papers to go out! THAT WOULD BE SO COOL! That is the last conversation we had with them before Elder Cannon left, they are really good guys and theyll be good missionaries. They are the ones that go out with us the most in the branch, and I feel like puting elders in the area really helped get these guys excited to go out and serve. 

Yesterday also we said goodbye to Basilio... That was really sad. He really loves Elder Cannon and I, and we gave him a blessing before we left and took pictures, but after all that and we were about to leave, he began to cry. He is probably the most pure hearted soul I have ever met in my life. He is about 30 years old, and with this illness he has, he is so suprisingly positive and happy and just tries to do what is right all the time. He lives about a 20 minute walk from the church and still walks and does all he can to follow christ. 

Oh yeah, Diego, a baseball player in the branch, is getting looked at by a few colleges in the USA, can you give me the contact info of the BYU sports or Baseball team? that would be awesome. He is like 22 and throws 93ish. 

Oh yeah, can somebody send me the pic of the cover photo of my facebook event of my farewell? We have a really poor area that looks so familiar... It may be the same picture. we will see!

I am realizing now how important it is just to work, work, work and be as obedient as possible. That is what is most important. Life is hard as a missionary, but the best life I could ever ask for. 

I hope all is well out there in the VINE, it is nice and cool here during the night, I am actually getting a little bit dry on my hands and my face. The winter here rocks. 

I am excited to hear from you all on Christmas! But one thing is that I am not sure what we will do... Since it is skyping. uhh but yeah or it is calling. We will let you know as we get closer! 

Love you all! 

Bethany and cole and everyone else... YOUD BETTER BE READING YOUR SCRIPTURES DAILY it makes all the difference.
 Gigantic Dominican moth.

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Dominican Republic- November 13, 2013

So this week has been really exciting. First, thursday we had a GREAT activity with about 60 people at the church building playing games like musical chairs and human knot, and the people just loved it. We got some good less active members there, so that was too great. Everyone looked like they enjoyed themselves. That day, we visited with a less active man, Frank. He is pretty amazing, he is on the SWAT. But we challenged him to read the Book Of Mormon, cover to cover, before he got back on work (since he really messed up his wrist or hand) and he is doing it. YEAH
Then Saturday we had a baptism! The sisters have been teaching Fatima for a long time. She is the daughter of a man in the ward, and Nene, the ward mission leader, baptized her. It was a cool experience for him since he became a priest the sunday before, so he was nervous and freaking out the whole time. But I assured him he would do great. When he was doing it, Elder Kunzler and I were the witnesses. (Elder Cannnon went to the baptism of the lady who got married a few weeks ago that he taught in his previous area) and I really felt the spirit. You could feel and see the room fill with the Spirit of the Lord and it burned in us. It was a really cool experience. 

Oh yeah the office elder, Elder Astacio, brought Elder Cannon back along with those really big bottles and we filled up about 15 with water from the church to wash clothes and to bathe. Then we got water the next day. Its all in a tank underneath the house, and the pump to carry it to the top of the house into another tank is broken, so we are stilll using the water in the bottles. We had clean water, we just drink bottled water in the big bottles, but yeah we were just lacking water to do all other things. 

I heard there was a meteor up there! That is pretty crazy.

It was my half birthday, thanks for remembering. 

BETHANY KEEP DOING WORK SISTER! And yeah that was sad to hear about Boys and Girls Club Basketball. Dad, Brent and I worked hard to keep it afloat, but theres not much you can do sometimes. Some things are just meant to fall. THAT MEANS COLE CAN NOW PLAY VOLLEYBALL!! YEAHHH!!

And then yesterday we saw one of our english class students, and we shared a lesson with him. He was pretty dang interested, I am excited. He is really smart, hatian, and speaks like 3.5 languages. He is really excited to read the book of mormon. His name is Chelo, lets hope he keeps it up.

Thanks for everything, and thats awesome to hear about Ben Jafek!! When does he report!? I want to email him when he is in.


Ward activity.
Fried yucca and mac and cheese
Christmas tree in the DR

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The Spirit is strong in VILLA- November 6, 2013

I know I emailed you saying I wouldnt be able to but I have like 5 minutes to finish this. THE THINGS I DO FOR YOU PEOPLE.

So the computer is SUPER slow so I am not sure how much it will let me write. But anyways, we recieved notice that it is possible that we may not recieve water at our house, or the whole city of Villa Gonzalez, for a MONTH. WOW that would be pretty awful, but we will see. I luckily washed my shirts and pants and socks recently... but I am going to have to find a way to wash and also repeat some clothes. (mother's editorial note:  Ewww!  Stinky boys in the 90 degree weather.  Showers?  Washing clothes???)
MOM SEND THAT PICTURE OF US WALKING ON THE DIRT ROAD  INTO THE ENSIGN! I am not sure what they would do with it but maybe they will make a little mormon ad that says "Work: Taking you to far places" or something REALLY deep like that. I should write those things because I am really profound. 

We had people at church! YES!! We had Gregorio and his 2 kids who are preparing for baptism, Basilio, Fellito, then a friend of Nene/new investigator Chino (like 21), and 2 investigators that are brother and sister, Angel (14) and Elizabeth (22), who Miguel and I went to pick up walking 30 minutes to go get them to walk back like 20 minutes. Sadly, Angel and Elizabeth heard someone mocking one of the testimonies and they were a little saddened by that, but in the lesson we explained to them that its hard to control others and they shouldnt say things sometimes but that shouldnt discourage us. When they told us those things, we were thinking "shoot" but we were on top of it. The spirit really helped us a lot. They liked the singing and the other testimonies though, I taught Angel how to read the music and a young guy Andy taught elizabeth.

Gregorio is the man. We left for an hour on Friday to go visit some a less active then we heard some whistling and yelling behind us. Thinking it was a usual drunk, we didnt pay attention to it. But he yelled "Hermanos!"  and it was Gregorio! He was the first person baptized in all of Villa Gonzalez. He was out of the church for a little while then he prayed for guidance. We showed up the next day and now he is as excited as ever. The Branch President wants to give him a calling and everything! 

Love you all, thats all the time I have for today. The Spirit really does guide his servants when they are living worthily. Missionaries and everyone else. Love you all once again