Sunday, May 26, 2013

Monday, May 20, 2013 - "WOW"!

Hola Mi Familia! Another week gone, and here we are starting the last week of the transfer. That is super crazy! I can't believe that we have almost completed another transfer already! It has gone by so fast! It was quite saddening to hear of the passing of Sister Monson. She was a special wife for the Prophet and he always talked of her so sweetly. Well, I have a lot to tell I feel like, so let's just get right to it! Starting with the investigators. This week has been kind of crazy and short, but good! We luckily were able to receive a few references this week to add to our teaching pool and we have renewed our desires to get references like crazy and to have more people to teach. We had changes with the zone leaders one day this week which also helped us a ton to get help and council for our area. Our funny lady has just been a hoot this week! We always look forward to our visits with her and we are always anxiously awaiting what crazy thing she will say next. She continues to tell everyone she knows that "the Mormons" are visiting her and she has been a good little missionary and has even given us names of people we can visit. She is quite hilarious! She brought her boss to the Mother's Day activity we had in the church (yes, we had a Mother's Day activity a week late... ) just so she could see everything everything she was learning! Haha! She is too funny! Our lady made friends with a member last week in church and so we brought that same sister with us to a lesson this week. Man, did she not take a breath! Haha! She just loved it! Talked nonstop! I'm sure she gets a little lonely sometimes and so when she has someone over it is just so exciting! She kept telling us that she was going to make us food for the next time we come and she has given us homemade bread and goodies like that. She made a little joke this week. She told the sister that went with us to the lesson that she liked her a lot and she wanted her to be her "Godmother" or "Madrina" for her baptism (for anyone who doesn't know, the godmother or madrina in the catholic church is a big deal for baby baptisms. Apparently they help in the baptism or something...). She just had us laughing nonstop! We taught her The Word Of Wisdom this week and she happily gave us her coffee container at the end of the lesson. We all went outside afterward and we dug a little hole and she poured her coffee in the hole and buried her coffee grains as a similitude of the Anti-Nephi Lehis burring their weapons of war. She is progressing quite well and is always sending us text messages to ask when we will be coming again. I think this week we will put a baptism date! The boy we are teaching kind of spooked us this week. In the changes we were having with the zone leaders I stayed in my area and Elder Hardison (who is in my generation and we traveled to Mexico together) came with me. We began talking and Elder Hardison began asking him how he has felt with us teaching him, etc. Then we arrive at the questions of baptism. He asks him and he then tells Elder Hardison his fight he had with his mom. He says that his mom has now calmed down and has given him her approval for baptism, but.......she wants him to wait 1 YEAR.....1 YEAR! That just kind of took us by surprise. We will be praying a lot for him that his mom will change her mind and we will also try and have a lesson for her to talk with her. So let's just hope for a miracle! That is all that is worth explaining about on to the other events...!!! Friday, we left Agua Prieta at 12 noon to be in Hermosillo by 6PM to be able to practice and rehearse with the other Elders in Hermosillo for our number! We arrived and BOY is it a lot hotter in Hermosillo than it is here. And I complain about the heat of Agua Prieta....haha! We took taxis to the chapel and when we got there the church's maintenance department is just going crazy! Haha! They are painting the exterior of the chapel and doing repairs and cleaning to get the building looking all nice and presentable for an Apostle. We practiced our number and man did it sound good! I loved being director! It was fun! Pres. and Hermana Hernandez came in and listened to our last rehearsal and liked it! Our zone went and stayed the night with the Assistants in their big house with one other zone. Saturday morning we had to all wake up at 5:30AM to get showered and ready to leave at 7AM. We arrived and the whole mission was there! It was crazy! The first and last time the whole mission will be together! It was neat to see old friends and companions and to talk with and see everyone! We practiced getting everyone into place for the picture and then we had like 20 minutes of down time to practice our song one last time. We got back into place for the arrival of Elder Christofferson and waited. When he arrived and entered the room, it was very special! The atmosphere changed. Elder Christofferson was accompanied by his wife, Elder Donald Hallstrom of the Seventy and his wife, as well as Benjamin De Hoyos of the Seventy (and part of the area seventy of Mexico) and his wife and Elder Torris of the Seventy as well. It was neat! So many General Authorities! After the picture, we formed a line and shook hands with all of them. Shaking hands with Elder Christofferson was something rather special. It happened so quick that I don't think I was able to enjoy it and take it in enough, but I just remember looking into his eyes--so blue! I felt like I was looking into the eyes of the Savior. When I shook hands with Sister Christofferson, she recognized my name and made the connection with Grandad. We went to our seats and as we started the meeting, we were the first ones to sing after the prayer. There were 8 of us in total and the spirit was quite strong with our song! It went quite well! Afterwards each General Authority and his wife took a few minutes talking to us. It was rather special. Elder and Sister Hallstrom were the only ones who didn't speak English so they had to have a translator there. They would say a few sentences in Spanish and they later the translator would translate. It was interesting. Even Sister Christofferson spoke a little bit of Spanish which was neat! But Elder Christofferson spoke like practically perfect Spanish! It was really an amazing conference! We learned a ton! A few things I liked that they told us: - If we all make small changes in ourselves and personally, the mission will change dramatically. -Strive to change and be better and do better than the day before. -More important than what we do, is who we are and who we become. It was truly an amazing conference. Elder Christofferson said he loved the number we did and it was one of his favorite hymns ("Hark All Ye Nations") and that he had never heard it sung with such spirit. That was kind of special because I was the one who choose the song! :) The highlight was the end when Elder Christofferson bore his testimony. He did it with such power and he bore witness and told us that he wanted us to know that when we pass through the veil, that in that moment he told us that Christ lives. When he gave his testimony a special spirit filled my heart. It was not like any other feeling of the spirit I had ever felt before. It was a completely different feeling, but I knew it was the spirit. The thing is, that this feeling has been lingering with me for a few days now ever since the conference! It was fantastic and a once in a life time opportunity that I will never forget! After the conference we stayed so that my comp could have his "mid-way" training meeting. It was also a good meeting with Hermana Hernandez and the Assistants. It gave us even more desires and encouragement to press on. Then the time came for us to leave and I unfortunately had to say goodbye to my "papa" Elder Melchor because he finishes in 1 week! Oh, that was so hard! He has truly made my mission experience the best! He started me off right and just taught me everything that I am as a missionary. I love him a lot and it will not be the same with him not here in the mission. It was hard saying goodbye knowing that we would probs never see each other again in this life. But who knows....hopefully so.... This weekend really gave me a testimony of the Restoration of the Church and the Apostle. I have truly felt that the Apostles really are special witnesses of Jesus Christ and have the same power and authority as the original 12. What a fantastic weekend I will NEVER forget! Well, I hope you all have a fantastic Week! Here's to the last week of this change. I only have about 6 changes left of my mish! That is nuts! Time is flying, but I am enjoying! Miss and love you all tons! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner
Elder Joyner finally got his Easter tie. Baptism - Agua Prieta

Monday, May 13, 2013 - "Mother I Love You, Mother I Do..."

Hola Mi Familia! It was super duper fantastic to be able to talk to you all this past Friday, and not only talk, but to SEE you all as well! Why wasn't Skype approved sooner in my mission? Glad to hear that everything went well with Mother's day. How spoiled mom was! I am so very thankful to my Father in Heaven for the wonderful mother that he has given me. I will never to able to repay her for the countless sacrifices she has made and makes for me. I am so blessed to have learned from her all that I have learned. Thanks for everything mom! I got my package Saturday! Thanks so much mom! I absolutely LOVE my tie!!!! It is seriously the most beautiful thing I have ever seen and have made quite a few people jeally! Well, I'm not too sure how long this will be since I just talked to you all like 3 days ago, but we will see if I've got anything to say... So this week we have been working on preparing a lady for her baptism for this past Saturday. We really haven't had to do much but just plan and carry out a baptismal service. Her kids were baptized back in like September and she has been going to church with them almost every Sunday since then, so she was more than ready and basically knew everything. We just reviewed with her what baptism was and why it was important. We were kind of worried because we have been attending the baptisms of the other Elders in our district and there aren’t any members that go to support. So we made an extra effort to invite everyone to this baptism to make sure that there would be attendance to support her. Saturday came and everything seemed to be going well. When we arrived at the church to clean the font we open everything up and there are cockroaches all over the font! Oh, that was disgusting! So we had to do some cleaning up...haha! We got everything cleaned and began filling the font. The baptism was supposed to start at 6 PM so we told her to arrive at 5:30 PM to make sure everything was set. Well, 5:30 well as 5:45, 6, 6:15....the lady had not arrived yet. We were starting to get really worried and freaking out. Most of the members had already arrived and we had a good crowd. Well, she finally arrived at 6:20 and we were able to get the baptismal service underway. It was really a nice service. Elder Carver, Elder Gutierrez, and myself did our "Nearer My God To Thee rendition that we did a few weeks ago in the zone conference and the spirit was so strong! The ordinance (sp? I don't know English anymore...) was performed by a brother in the branch and we ended. It was really lovely and I was very blessed to be able to participate in this baptism. This was really a blessing from the Lord how this sister just came into our hands and we were able to help her participate in this saving ordinance of baptism. Now the other investigators.... The boyfriend of a member is on hold right now. We are just chillin with him...I'm not sure when we will be able to put another date but we will just have to see. He seems to still like our lessons I think. I don't know...he kind of confuses me sometimes. I can't really understand what he wants or what he needs. We will just have to keep on keepin on with him I guess... The other boy is also kind of on hold too. We are just waiting for him to turn 18 so that he doesn’t have to have family permission to be baptized. We watched with him the Joseph Smith movie this week and it was quite special. The spirit is always strong when we teach and testify of Joseph Smith. He is a nice young chap, but we just need a baptismal date so that he can progress a little more. Our funny lady is quite a hoot! She just keeps us going every lesson! We find ourselves holding in the laughter. She is absolutely obsessed with "The Mormons" and everything about us. She tells everyone she meets that "The Mormons" are visiting her and that she is going with "The Mormons" and she plans to be baptized. We can't get in a single word talking with her. She just keeps talking and talking and talking. She has received a few answers to her prayers. She works Sundays so she has been praying that she will get a chance to go to church to be able to be baptized. Her prayer was answered. She was talking to her boss one day the things she is learning with us and she commented that she has to go to church 4 Sundays to be baptized. He told her to just tell him when and he will cover her those Sundays. So that was special. We had a really nice lesson with her this week about the Plan of Salvation and we were able to tell her that she could be sealed Time and All Eternity with her husband who died a few years ago. She really liked that and is really striving to reach her goal of baptism. She was able to attend the baptism this past Saturday and she just seemed like she was having herself such a good little time. She was telling all the members she couldn't wait for her own baptism and to be baptized in the true church! She is so presh! She also went to church this past Sunday, but left before we could ask her how it went. We will visit her this week to see how she felt. This week my testimony has also been strengthened in the power of personal revelation. I can testify that God hears all of our needs and helps us understand and know the things that we need. I firmly believe in the saying: "When we want to talk to God, we pray. When we want God to talk to us, we read the scriptures" Really those two go hand in hand. I love the scriptures and the wonderful messages that they contain for each and every one of us! Well, that is about all I've got for this week! Here is to a week of spiritually preparing to receive instruction from an Apostle of the Lord! How fantastic this opportunity will be! I hope you all have a good last week of school! I love and miss you all tons and hope you are well! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Monday, May 6, 2013 -

Hola Mi Familia! My this week has just flown by! I seriously feel like I just wrote you all! How crazy! Yeah, 5 de Mayo came and went. It really isn't anything big here like I said before, but in the state of Puebla it is and since my comp is from Puebla he kind of made a big deal about the day. Apparently Cinco de Mayo is when Puebla won a battle against the French. So that is why it is so big, but really whatevs. This week has had quite a few events. We are really starting to pick up work now and it feels quite good! This week, 3 of us have been getting together to rehearse for a musical number we were going to do in Nogales Thursday. So we have been hard working on that. The older lady that I told you we found that was really interested, basically obsessed, with the church. She always loves us to visit and is talking quite seriously about becoming apart of the church. She is an older lady in her late 50s. Her husband was killed and she lives alone. She says her father was baptized towards the end of his life and she went to church sometimes with him. And then the friend I told you about that she lives in Hermosillo that she always went with the church and Family Home Evenings. She is so funny. She really is obsessed with the Mormons and the Church. We can't go a single lesson without her mentioning at LEAST 10 times....if not more....just how organized the church is and that we are very organized people, etc. She is funny. However, she works Sundays and that keeps her from going to church, but she says her co-workers are willing to trade some Sundays with her so that she can go one Sunday yes, the other no--or every other one. Another thing she is obsessed with the Joseph Smith Story. Haha! So we did a little bit of pleasing her obsession and we watched the Joseph Smith Movie with how she just LOVED that! Just told us that she believes everything is true and just wants to be a part of the church. Well, she is like really basically ready to be thrown into the water...we just have to get her to church 4 times before putting a date. The boyfriend of the member, kind of fell this week! We went with him for our lesson Wednesday and before starting he told us that he wasn't going to be baptized on the 11th, this Saturday. He said that problems with his mom are just too strong right now and he needs to wait till things cool down a bit and that she can be more accepting. I think it was good that we called of the 11th actually. I don't think he is really ready anyway. But, we will keep visiting him and try to see when we will be able to put another date. This week, we really received a blessing! Apparently last week when we didn't go to church because we left for Hermosillo, this lady arrived at church. Her kids were baptized back in September and she wanted to get baptized, but couldn't because she was going through a few problems, but apparently went to church last week saying that she was ready to be baptized. We received this reference and went to visit her. Apparently she has been going to church since her kids were baptized in September. So we invited her to be baptized this upcoming Saturday the 11th and she accepted! So we are going to be visiting her like crazy this week-basically everyday- to review the lessons and make sure she is ready. But it is so fantastic, because the other date for the 11th fell through, but we were able to pick up another one quite quickly! Let's hope everything works out well. We had our multi-zone conference in Nogales this Thursday. There was only one bus that leaves for Nogales a day and it was at 4AM, so I freaking had to wake up at 2AM! It was HORRIBLE! It was a really nice conference though! Like I said, 3 of us did a musical number of "Nearer My God To Thee" and it turned out quite beautifully! Well, this week we sort of had a lot of desires to use bikes since all the Elders here have them, but us, and so....we went on a hunt and bought bikes on Saturday! Let me just tell you....Saturday was SO PAINFUL!!!! Oh my bum was in so much pain as well as my knees and legs! Oh! I do hope I can adjust quickly or I may have to return to walking! OH I haven't ridden a bike in so much time! I am not really used to it. It is fun and we get around fast, but oh how my body is not used to it..... One last thing...I received in my email today a few pictures....the Family in Hermosillo was baptized this past Saturday! AH! That just made my day! How fantastic! I am so happy for them! Well, that is about all I got for this week. I hope you all have a super fantastic week and I am SUPER DUPER excited that we will be able to SKYPE in just a few short 4 DAYS!!!!! AHH!!!! Until then... ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Monday, April 29, 2013 - Miracles Happen Once In A While When You Believe...

Hola Mi Familia! Well, Thankfully this week seemed to go by a lot faster than the first and it is hard to believe that it is Monday already. I am super thrilled that you all will be having a missionary lesson at the house this week! That makes me so happy that my family is participating in missionary work! Keep it up! Make friends with them, be a support system for them, help them feel comfortable, and share your testimonies! Well, like I said, this week has gone by a ton quicker than the last and thank Heavens! Looks like we are really starting to pick up work which is really nice. It is fantastic to pull out the agenda and look at this week and see various appointments already made with people. The sun has not been my friend lately....Although Agua Prieta is higher up and "cooler" than Hermosillo, just the fact that it is higher up in altitude is a killer, so we are closer to the sun. It is cooler, but the UV rays are SO STRONG! It is basically almost impossible to not get burned if you don't put on sun block. Even if you are out in the sun for only like 3 minutes, you can burn the rays are so bad. I found that out with my head the first day we arrived. I got burned pretty badly! So it is cooler, but also more suffering for the rays. The boyfriend of a member is progressing well! But he sort have had a big family problem come his way this week. We had a really nice lesson with some members Wednesday and talked about the Plan Of Salvation and it was nice to hear the testimonies of the member! When we went for our lesson Friday we arrived with him and he was quite upset. He was crying a lot and excused himself from the room. His girlfriend's mom said that he had told his mom that he was going to be baptized and the mom apparently got really mad and upset and is quite an explosive person, so that didn't end well. He says that he will continue with the baptism because he is 18 and doesn't have to have his parent's permission, but it still tore him apart how unaccepting his mom was. We just have basically a week and a half left till his baptism so we need to get moving to get him well prepared. The other member’s boyfriend is still going... we were talking with the family about him as well and they were saying that his family is quite strict and quite catholic and so they may not accept the thought of him being baptized. However, they told us that he has a birthday in June and will turn 18, so we may just have to wait until then to really put a date and progress too much further. But he is really loving our lessons and is a great guy and will get baptized one day I think. We also found a few new investigators this week. A guy who is 19 years old and is from the south but is here trying to get into the army. We taught him only once, but he seems pretty positive. This week we also had a little miracle. Friday before leaving the house we said a prayer asking God to put us in the path of someone that day so we could find more people to teach. Well we went and were going to our 6PM appointment that night, but it fell through and so we went to look for our back up plan, but that also fell through. We were thinking of who else we could visit and so we planned to go contact a reference that we received. We were walking down the street and this older lady in her 50s, flagged us down and asked what time the church services were. We began talking to her and apparently she lived in Hermosillo before and had a really close friend who was a member of the church and she would always go with this friend to church and go to the Family Home Evenings and such, but she never got baptized. She also said that when her father was older he got baptized and she also went with him to church. She knew a lot about the Church, but never got baptized. She told us that she was going to a church here, but doesn't really like how they have bands and "praise music" in their church and she decided not to go. We offered to share a message with her and we taught her the Restoration. She loved the message and accepted to read The Book Of Mormon and get baptized. We didn't put a date because she has a difficult work schedule, but I know that in the near future we can. This was really an answer to our prayer. I feel like those 2 appointments we and fell through for a reason and God put us in the path of someone who needed to hear our message. Just another little testimony that God hears and answers prayers. This week I also had 2 sweet experiences with families. We went to a baptism of a little girl in the branch that turned 8. Before she was baptized, her whole family got up and sang a special musical number. It was sweet because the little girl and her dad were dressed in white and her brothers had on their white Sunday shirts and also the mom had a while blouse and so all were dressed in white. It was quite a tender moment to see this family dressed in white singing together. It made me think of the temple and a family being in the celestial kingdom together. I also thought of my own family and how I can't wait for the day when we can all be in the temple together, dressed in white in the celestial room, getting a glimpse of what heaven will be like. We also taught this family who only has a year or so in the church about temple and the importance or temples and how their goal is to go and get sealed. It was really a sweet lesson and the spirit was there quite strong. Another little moment about families and temples! I LOVE the temple! Well, yesterday we didn't go to church. They called us early and said that we had to go to Hermosillo to get my Visa renewed. So we traveled all day Sunday and arrived in Hermosillo in the evening. This morning we went to the immigration office and got everything squared away so that I am legal and can stay another 9 months. Afterwards, I had the lovely opportunity of getting together with those who are in Hermosillo who will be apart of our small choir or octet for the Apostle that is coming in a few weeks. We found out it will be Elder Christofferson. How neat will that be! The octet is coming along really nicely and it should be quite a powerful little number! We then returned for a 5 hour bus ride back to AP and here I am. That is why I am writing so late! Sorry! :( Well, here is to another week! I am stoked because we are having a multi-zone conference with Nogales and so we will be going to Nogales! I have always wanted to go there so we will see what it is like! Hope you all have a fantastic week! Love and miss you all tons! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Monday, April 22, 2013

Hola Mi Famila! Whew! What a crazy, LONG week this has been! I don't even know where to has been quite rough. Although it has been quite hard this week, the Lord has really been with us and I have been able to see little miracles and blessings that he has given us each and every day. Even something as little as a member passing by offering a ride to a far away street, the Lord really has helped us. The missionaries before us didn't really leave any work for us. No investigators or anything to work with, so that has been rough not knowing where to begin. We have just been using the directory to try and find members to visit to introduce ourselves and get to know them and try to see if they have anyone we can visit or teach. A few have given us a couple of names and have been really helpful. I am so surprised and happy with our branch. There are 3 branches here in Agua Prieta and we are in Branch 1. It is bigger the WARD I was in Hermosillo and it is only a branch! They have like 120 attendances. It is pretty neat! And all of the organizations have their presidencies and are very well organized. Our Branch pres. is a young fellow. Only 27 or so years old, but he is really good! All of the members are so nice and seem to want to help us, so that is good. Agua Prieta is one of the highest baptizing zones in the mission. That is because they are so close to going from a District to a Stake and I think these members really want a stake and so everyone is working hard and doing their part to make that happen. This branch doesn't have a piano player, so I am back at my old calling! Yes! I feel like the Lord has really helped me improve and advance in Piano in the mission! Just another little blessing from serving a mission! We have found 2 new investigators this week that are really quite awesome and they are both Boyfriends of 2 members. A boy who is a miracle! He is 18 and the Sunday before we arrived, he apparently went to church for the first time and went up and bore his testimony in Fast and Testimony meeting! Apparently he said that he knew the church was true, and even without talking to missionaries first! We met with him and taught him the Restoration and the spirit was so strong and he began to cry. He said he knew that the church was true. We invited him to be baptized May 11th and he accepted the date! So we have one date so far! :) We also later on taught Lesson 3 "The Gospel" and he just loved it! Once again he cried, but a lot more this time. He gave such a wonderful prayer and the spirit was really strong. He is so willing and loves meeting with us. He is truly one of those "already prepared" and will progress really well! There is another boy that is also the boyfriend of another member and we found him just going around looking for members to meet. He is 17 and had heard the missionaries one time before and they gave him a Book Of Mormon and he has been reading it and really loves it! As we were getting to know him a bit, we asked him what he most desired in this life and he said to have a family centered in the Gospel and to be able to be a good example to his kids when he has kids. We taught him the Plan of Salvation and about families and he really enjoyed it! We also invited him to baptism, but he said he wanted to wait because he doesn't want to be in a different religion than his family. We have been trying to get him to understand that he doesn't have to wait, but we are just not sure how to get to him. We will still work on it though. He has felt the spirit and has received answers to his prayers, so I think we may be able to help him! It has kind of been sort of fun being a trainer! It is weird being with someone who knows completely nothing about being a missionary and you have to teach him everything, but it is going well. This Elder is a good guy. He is obedient and likes to work. He is sort of like me and kind of quiet and "serious" as they like to say down here. I don't like serious, I just say I'm tranquil and peaceful. But with us both being the same in a way, it is has been kind of interesting and quiet! Ha! I am used to comps that don't shut up, but now that I have one that is like me and doesn't converse much it is kind of killing and awkward and times! We will get through it though! I told mom before transfers that someone in a high place told me what they were thinking of for me in this transfer. The options were Zone Leader or Trainer. I told her that I didn't feel ready for either, especially Zone Leader, but I have found this week that he Lord really knows us and knows what we need and what is best for our lives. I know that this assignment as trainer is exactly what I need at this point in my mission and already I am learning and growing so much in so many ways and so many skills. I am truly thankful for this time and know it will most likely help me prepare for other assignments in the mission later on. This week Hermana Hernandez called me and told me that she wanted me to put together a small group a missionaries to do a special musical number for a special conference in May. Apparently 1 or 2 Apostles will be coming to our mission and I am putting together a number for them! We have a group of about 8 Elders and I have chose " Hark All Ye Nations" as the piece. I have been doing an arrangement and it is coming together well. We practiced for the first time today and I am super excited! It should come together nicely! I know I am leaving out a bunch of things to say, but nothing is really coming to mind at the moment. I hope you all have a fantastic week! I will be talking to you all in a short 2 and a half or 3 weeks! How crazy, huh? Till Next Week! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Monday, April 15, 2013 - "Oh, Whatever Are We Going To Do...."

Hola Mi Familia! Well, this has just been quite the craziest week ever! I don't even know where to begin. So much happened. So many good experiences and memories. But we'll get to that in a minute. I know you are just dying to know what happened with transfers and everything, but you will just have to wait and be patient while I explain my beautiful week chronologically. Tuesday, we arrived with the lady that got baptized and she broke the news to us that the bishop had asked her to speak the coming Sunday in Sacrament meeting! Ha! Imagine that! She doesn't even have 1 month since her baptism and now they are asking her to give a talk! She was kind of freaking out and nervous, but we helped her. She was asked to speak on Obedience and so it wasn't too hard of a topic. Later that day we went with the Family that we are teaching. When we arrived, the sister told us that she was thinking about us and hoping that we would pass by that day and we did! She said that in the last couple of days her family was experiencing quite a few problems and was in the middle of a crisis and her mom had stopped talking to her for days. She was upset and was looking for some words of comfort and she knew that we would be able to give her that comfort. We went on a scripture rant for a good bit sharing our favorite scriptures about adversity and trails. I shared one that I have always liked that is Lindsey's Harris's favorite scripture as well. It says something along the lines of "fear not little flock, though heaven and hell combine against you if you are built upon the rock, you cannot fail." She was comforted and we proceeded on with the scheduled lesson. At the end of the lesson her mom miraculously called and they recon ciliated. She said that this happened because we were there and what a blessing it was for us to be. That same day I heard word from a sister in our ward that used to live in Nacozari, that the Nacozari branch would be going to the temple that following weekend. I basically flipped! Pres. had told us that if we have more than a year of not going to the temple we could go if our ward had a ward day or something. I heard this and called the zone leaders asking them to ask permission to be able to go to the temple to complete with my one year of not going and also to see Nacozari! :) They called Pres. and he told them to make the decision and one of them had not gone to the temple either, so they said yes so that we could both go together! It was lovely! Thursday, the zone leaders called me saying that Pres. wanted to put another companionship of missionaries in the zone and they asked if I thought that my district could use more missionaries. I told them that the sisters in the other ward could really use more and that they needed help. The assistants approved and we spent a good half of the day look for another house to rent to move missionaries in. It was quite difficult and a long day, but we finally found something that will work. Friday night we went to sleep at the zone leaders' house, so that me and one of them could go that next morning to the temple. The first session was early at 7AM and so we were up about 5 getting ready and all. We arrived a little late to the temple, but just in time to make the 7AM Session. It was great! Upon arriving in the session, there were quite a few wards doing sessions that day and so it was a full session. We were there and another pair of missionaries as well, but unfortunately none from Nacozari made it into the 7AM session. That was disappointing. The session was so wonderful and it felt so fantastic to be back in the temple after not going for a whole year-this past week marked 1 year in Mexico (1 whole year outside of my country) and 1 year not going to the temple. I loved every moment of it! Afterwards we got dressed and were heading out and I saw 2 sisters from Nacozari that we entering the next session! It made me really happy to see them. Upon exiting the temple, we went to greet some member that the missionary that was with me that I knew. One sister say my badge and asked me my first name and I told her, and she said that she was Carmen's mom! That was super exciting to be able to meet her! Ever since I arrived in the mission, I was hoping to meet someone in her family and I finally did! That was super awesome! We later went to the distribution store to buy a few things and saw a few youth from Nacozari and a few more sisters! It was so fun to see them and we took pictures. Unfortunately, I never got to see my Mexican parents, the branch pres. and his wife, and a few other members, but it was really fun to see those that I saw! Saturday night, we went with the teaching family to watch a movie with them, "The Testaments" and they really enjoyed that. Then I broke the news to them that I had heard rumors that I was going to be transferred (because I had heard rumors from quite a few.).They basically freaked out and began to cry and be all sad. They had really come to love me quite a bit and thought of me as one of their family. They said I was the only Elder that really understood them and what they needed and how to teach so that they could understand. They began asking what they could do to get me to stay and I said there was basically nothing. They said they wanted to do something special before I left and all of a sudden they decided to make a carne asada! We went to the store with them to buy the meat and stuff. We bought flour and I made the tortillas! We grilled the steak and had our carne asada tacos! It was quite delicious! The mom and daughter had left for a good 20 minutes and came back with present. They went and bought me a few ties! That was really nice of them. We had a good time together! I will miss them! They had a baptism date for the 4th of May and they wanted to know if I would be able to be there. I'm not really sure if it will happen, but I told them I wanted to be there in one year from now when they get sealed as a family in the temple. They said they want to go to Salt Lake, but if that doesn't happen I just may have to make a trip back out here....parents...mission tour? :) Sunday came and we received the call that I would be going to Agua Prieta (US connections again!!!) and that I would be training! Woah! What a hit that was! I spent Sunday saying my goodbyes and packing! Monday morning, I headed to the offices to receive my "son". There were about 10 missionaries that had arrived and all from gringos....We were all waiting around while they had interview with the Pres. and Hermana Hernandez asked me to sing while we waited and so I sang a hymn and other started to get up and do little solos as well...although they weren't that good! ;) Pres. then assigned us our companions and I have been placed with an Elder from Puebla Mexico. He is 19 years old and is a greenie! I love him a lot though! He is pretty cool and we seem to be similar in personality a little. We left for the 5 hour bus ride to Agua Prieta and arrived around 5:30PM. We took a taxi to the house and not too long after our district leaders showed up with the keys. We have a nice little place with a boiler (HOT WATER!!!) and a stove and oven! It was quite trashed from the other missionaries and so we had to clean it up a bit. Today, Tuesday, has been quite a rough one! We are, as they call it, opening the area. Basically that means that other missionaries are new to the area and they we start from scratch, from nothing, nada, zip! That has been rough! We don't even know where to begin! We don't know any members, the elders before us didn't leave us and investigators and so we are having a rough start. This week will probs be the hardest one of my mission! I am already starting to feel the weight of being a trainer and will have to basically teach him how to do everything and upon that having to find people to teach. I think he is a little home sick and is kind of freaking out. I can relate to that and I know how he feels. But we will get to working and knowing each other and will work on that. So that was my week! Well, I hope you all have a fantastic week. Here's to the longest and hardest one of my life! Love you all! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner
District Leader - Elder Joyner and his District Missionaries

Monday, April 8, 2013 - "Lord, I Believe!"

Hola Mi Familia! Hope you all had a fantastic week as I did. Especially with General Conference and all! Today I officially complete 14 months in the mish! How crazy is that! I can now count the months that I have left on my fingers....10! That is super nuts! This week has been full of teaching my comp the area and trying to get back into the rhythm of things after the vacations. We continue to have a hard time trying to find people to teach, but we have been committing quite a few members to talk to friends and invite them to meet with us. And we have been receiving a few references which is always good! :) Friday, we had a zone meeting with the Zone Leaders to learn of the new things they were told in their monthly meeting with Pres. An exciting announcement was made....we are now able to email FRIENDS AND CONVERTS!!! That is an exciting announcement! It will be so much easier than having to try and deal with the crappy Mexican Mail System! Also I think that I will be able to go to the temple soon! It has been exactly one year since I have gone and since Pres. made the rule that we can't go, I thought I was out of hope till I got home. But....he is letting those who haven't gone in 1 year or more go! So that will be fantastic! Tuesday night we have a neat little Family Home Evening with a family in our ward (the sister who receives the packages) and the lady who just got baptized and her son and her sister who was baptized in December and her kids as well. The sister gave a nice lesson on the power of prayer and the importance in our lives. We were in charge of the games! Hehe! We played a tie race where you have to tie a tie and untie it and then pass it on. There were two ties going in the circle and the one who received both ties had to answer a question. It was fun. For refreshment we made pizzas! They were delish! There was a sweet little spirit there as we socialized with this sweet family. I so do hope they stay strong in the gospel! This week with the Family we have been teaching, we had 2 really nice lessons. First, we taught them "Follow The Prophet" in honor of Conference and invited them to come to Conference with us. We watched a talk from Pres. Monson from a few conferences ago and it applied to something that has been happening in their family and so that was a nice little testimony of prophets. We also taught the importance of Prayer and Studying the Scriptures. It was a really great lesson! We shared quite a few personal experiences of the power of prayer and studying the scriptures. I love telling investigators that to talk to God, we pray; if we want God to speak to us, we read the scriptures. How true that is and I have clearly seen it in my life! At the end, the less active brother spoke up and shared with us a few experiences he has had with prayer and his testimony. Later, the wife and daughter also told us of how they are experiencing conversion through prayer. I always love to hear investigators talk about their experiences with the power of prayer and how they have received their answers! It strengthens my testimony every single time! The Family was able to go with us to conference and it made me happy that they were able to see more of the church and all the messages. They are progressing quite well with their baptismal date and could really be baptized quicker, but they wanted the 4th of May so that is that. The sweet lady that got baptized was also able to attend conference this weekend-all 4 sessions- and I think her testimony was really strengthened. She seemed really happy to be there with everyone and hear the messages. I think she may be my strongest convert and it makes me overjoyed to see her enjoy the gospel and what she is learning. We taught her about temples this past week and she was able to see the temple when we went to Conference. I really hope she can stay strong to reach this wonderful goal of going to the temple. Apart from the Family there aren't any really significant to mention families in teaching. We do have more, but they aren't progressing as well. Hopefully this week we can find more. I always LOVE this time of year--GENERAL CONFERENCE! It is just the best and I have been waiting for quite a few weeks for this. I did what I do many times before conference-I generated questions or problems that I have in my life and I prayed that I would find answers in the talks from General Conference, and guess what.....I received my answers! It is just another testimony of revelation and that the Apostles and Prophet lead and guide us for what we need in our lives. I felt this conference was especially important for missionaries. If you put your shoes in those of a missionary, you will recognize that many talks and things that were said were great council on how to prepare for a mission and what missionaries can do to be better! It was great and really spoke to me the whole time. I especially liked Elder Holland's talks of "Lord, I Believe!". I always love how he takes stories from the New Testament and the life of Christ for his talks! I loved the story that he told of the Young Man that said that he didn't know for sure, but that he "believed". I really loved this talk. Although I too, don't know and understand much sometimes, I too can say "Lord, I Believe" and that I have the faith and confidence that if I search for my answers, I will find them and can turn my belief into knowing! Unfortunately, English wasn't available Saturday and so we had to watch all those sessions in Spanish. However, Sunday they set up English, but I didn't know about it the first session and so watched it in Spanish, but I did get to view the last session in English. It was actually kind of cool to watch it in Spanish and have the experience that I probs won't have again after the mish. But it was nice to see a little in English; it makes a difference in how the messages are presented and everything when there is not a translator. I saw Oliver in the Saturday Session singing! that was neat! Now, just one more conference in the mish..... Well, here's to another week! Last week until transfers next Monday...we will see what happens... I love and miss you all tons! Just one more month and I will be speaking to you all again on the phone for my second to last time. ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Monday, May 6, 2013

Monday, April 1, 2013 - Holy, Holy Week!

Hola Mi Familia! Well, like you all most of the Latin American world has vacations these 2 weeks. It is Holy Week which is widely celebrated by the Catholics and so there are school vacations and everything! And basically when there are vacations everyone whole lives in the city leaves for the coast/beach and everyone who lives on the coast goes to the city so basically NOBODY was home this past week which made it extremely difficult to have lessons. That was pretty sucky! I feel bad because this week that I feel like I don't have much to report on, so sorry if this is short... With the Family we are teaching we did have quite an excellent lesson this week! They told us that they really really enjoyed the church services last week and that they felt comfortable and that they could see this as a future for them. We taught them Lesson 3 "The Gospel" which talks about baptism and all. We asked the million dollar question and invited them to baptism! THEY ACCEPTED!!!! We have put a date for the 4th of is kind of a ways a way, but the General Conference Sunday kind of kills us with not having regular services (with the requirement that they have to attend 4 Sundays.). It was a really fantastic lesson and they gave us dinner again! It is pretty great! They seem to feed us every time we go over there! I love it! They are really starting to gain more and more trust in us and are more comfortable with us. We also challenged the dad to get his life in order and meet with the Bishop so that he could be the one to baptize his wife and daughter so that is what is up with that. Thursday night we had basically all of our appointments all threw and so we went to go visit our renters who live below us. They are the ones who aren't members...very very catholic....but love the missionaries to death like their own kids. We began talking and it turned into a lesson. They explained what this Holy Week meant to them as Catholics and we explained why we don't really celebrate the Holy Week, but more Easter and the Resurrection. It was quite an interesting chat and really interesting to hear their point of views on different things and also that we could share with them ours. I mentioned to them that one of my goals before leaving Mexico was to buy a Catholic Rosario (Rosary in English?) because I am absolutely fascinated by the Catholic religion and traditions. They took that as an appreciation and respect for their religion and gifted me one! YES! Mission accomplished! At the end, we had to go to another appointment and leave, but we left them with our testimonies of Easter and this season and we sang them our beautiful harmonized rendition of "I Know That My Redeemer Lives". I felt a special spirit while singing it and I believe they did too, because when we finished it was just really silent and the spirit was so strong and then they just told us how beautiful it was and how in awe they were! It was nice! Well, now we get to the weekend events.... To begin, Elder companion and I got a phone call from my papa Asisitant Elder Melchor and he tells us that we would be getting another missionary with us and would be in a trio for the final 2 weeks of the transfer. So Friday night Elder companion #2 arrived with us. He has 5 months in the mission, but only 3 weeks in Mexico. He previously served 4 months in his own country due to visa problems. At first I was dreading it because the last time we were in a trio it was really hard to teach with 3 people and all. It actually didn't go to bad for the first day. The next night we went to visit a sister who is less active and she has a little snack hut outside her house and so we bought Tostitos from her which are basically the individual potato chip bags opened up and you put nacho cheese and sometimes meat or lettuce and tomato in it and eat it. It is pretty good..sometimes....Well that night I woke up shaking kind of badly and felt like I had to go to the bathroom. I spent the next hour sick to my stomach. It was not fun....I think it was the lettuce and tomato we ate it may have been saved from one day to the next. Well, I woke up feeling HORRIBLE and I could barely shower or walk around the house without getting really tired and having to sit down and my whole body ached. If we hadn't of had to confirm the lady and her son I would have said that we not go to church, but we had to. But we only went to Sacrament meeting and then came home and I spent most of the day in bed sleeping. The sucky thing is I basically wasn't able to eat anything at all that day. We ran out of bread so I could have a few slices of bread and the only other thing I had was cereal and milk and that wouldn't have been good for my stomach. My comps gave me a blessing and I felt somewhat better at the end of the day. I do feel loads better today, but there is still something that doesn't feel right and doesn't feel completely cured, so I don't know what I need....more sleep or more gatorade, or more medicine or what... During Sacrament meeting we also got a new Bishop and Bishopric... The old one was in for 5 years as bishop. That same morning, the Zone Leaders called and said that Elder companion had special transfers to Obregon and that he would be leaving Monday morning at 7AM. He was happy to leave with this being his first area and having almost 7 months here. I had mixed feelings. I was kind of happy and sad. We have had a rough time together but were just starting to get along these past few weeks. He is the comp that I have had the most time with as well... 4 months... So he left this morning and that was that. So I am here with Elder companion #2 and that is that. Well I hope you all have a good rest of the week and enjoy your break and time with Grandma and Papa! I love and miss you all tons! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner
Baptism in Hermosillo, Mexico

Monday, March 25, 2013 - "Here Is Hope"

Hola Mi Familia! Well, this week has been quite a week. The weeks seem like they are just flying by! It is really crazy! I haven't felt them go this fast before. We are at the half way point of transfers; completed week 3, 3 more to go! The weather has been a little more tolerable. It has cooled down a tad bit and will stay like this for another week or so. It is still hot, but bearable. This week a young man from our ward left for the mission. He is going to Veracruz, Mexico. In Mexico, they like to make everything a party and so they had a going away devotional basically to set him apart. We were able to take an investigator, with us who is a family friend of this guy that left. They had a little devotional and the family members bore testimony and then they set him apart. It was kind of weird because in the states it is just like the family and that is it. But here they had the family and the whole ward there to watch him get set apart. So whatever! Seeing the goodbyes and setting apart brought back TONS of memories and was quite a special time for me to reflect on what happened a year ago and how far I have come since then. It was weird for everyone to tell this young man, "see you in 2015!", and it seems like really a long time away. But really, the mission is super fast and the time goes by like water running through your hands! You really just have to enjoy every single day! We seem to be in a bit of a crisis! We are beginning to feel like there aren't a whole lot of people to visit and that at times we have been left with nothing to do. We have thought about "opening the area" which would mean like we would basically just start from scratch and try and find people to teach. But the Lord has given us quite a bit of miracles this week that has really helped us along and have given us more people, little by little. The lady and her son....were able to come to church yesterday and so we had 2 baptisms yesterday! It was so nice! When the Zone Leaders came to do interviews, the one that interviewed the lady and was very impressed at all that she knew and her testimony and how she has grown and all. It was neat. She really has changed quite a bit. We went from thinking that she wasn’t interested at all in the beginning and wasn't really committed, but when she received her answer to her prayer that it was true, she just took off and has been making amazing progress since then! She really is quite a miracle. Both of them asked that I perform the ordinance and I felt privileged. The service was really nice and, once again barely any members came quite just made me hurt, because we announced it in church and all. Not even the Bishop came! But it was still nice. I was thinking while filling the font, the importance of what we were doing. I thought to myself that we were participating in saving ordinances for 2 special people. Saving ordinances that would be used not only for his life, but for the eternity and they have a far great eternal significance. How great is that! I hope that they will remain firm and stay strong in the Gospel. The Family we are teaching seem to be getting off to good progress! We had 2 really neat lessons with them this week. The first, they invited us to eat with them and after the lesson we talked about faith in Jesus Christ and how Faith without works or actions is dead and how faith moves us to act. We then, watched "Finding Faith in Christ" which always just hits the spot! I always love watching this video! It is so powerful and I especially love all the miracles of Christ is shows. I think they were really touched by it as well and asked to keep it. The daughter recently got into a relationship and one day her boyfriend was over while we taught them and he became really interested, so we are now teaching him, as well. At this lesson we committed them to put their faith and trust in Christ and join us at church Sunday! And they did! We passed by their house at 7:30AM which made me have to get up even early than my normal 5:45AM Sunday schedule. We were really worried because the sister had told us that she isn't very social and that they don't adapt to changes well and would only commit to baptism if they felt comfortable in the church. We were nervous and hoping that she would really like the church. While there a ton of members greeted them which made them feel good I think. Half the members didn't even know that they were investigators because they were all dressed up in skirts and Sunday clothes! So we seem to be making good progress with them and hopefully we can get them in the water! This week, the Bishop asked us to speak in church. I was overjoyed with the topics he presented to us: The Death and Resurrection of Christ and The Blessing that come from His death and resurrection. I chose to speak on the death and resurrection. The bishop only gave us one day to prepare which stressed me out, but I thoroughly enjoyed preparing this talk. I was able to just immerse myself into the scriptures and to learn and know, like never before, of Christ's final moments of His life. I was able to reflect much on the Atonement and the meaning it has for us. I think that we can know the Atonement, but will never be able to fully understand it. My testimony grew tremendously in just a few hours while preparing this talk. I really took myself with Christ; I was there in the upper room when he instituted the sacrament and later announced that one of His own apostles would betray him. I was there as He when to the Mount of Olives and told his Apostles to wait as he left to go pray. I was there as prayed to His Father in Heaven asking VOLUNTARILY to feel all the sins of the world, asking that He could live every single one of our lives in that instant. I was there as he was betrayed, tried, and later beaten and mocked. I was there as He hung on the cross and wept as He felt the presence of His own Father in Heaven leave Him, just so he could complete His Atonement and know how it feels to feel abandoned completely (Elder Holland gives a fantastic talk on this: "None Were With Him"). I was there as He found Mary weeping and told her that He has been resurrected. I could feel like I was there! I can't even put into words, or describe how it was to be able to prepare this talk. It impacted me so much. I am so very grateful for my Savior and Redeemer and for all that He did for me. He even lived my life and felt how I feel when I feel alone or depressed or saddened or upset or far from God. Although I can't fully comprehend what He did and why, I am grateful for it. I know that through Him we can find hope and peace in any and all trails that come our way. No matter how big or small, Jesus "doesn't just make up the difference, He makes ALL the difference". I hope that this Easter we can really reflect on all of this and what this means to us and how it has changed us. I hope that we will read in the Bible His family moments and that we will take a trip and experience those moments with him. I know HE LIVES! Well, I hope you all have just a blast with Grandma and Papa this week and in your little mountain cabin.... :l .....I hope Easter goes well and that you all can reflect on its real meaning. I love and miss you all tons! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! I know that My Redeemer LIVES! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner

Monday, March 18, 2013 - Heat Has Begun...

Well, the subject line pretty much says it all....unfortunately, the heat has begun. We have been around 95-105 this week...and that feels cool. That isn't even the high yet; just wait till we get up to 120! Ugh! But it is crazy to think that this will be my last summer in this heat and I will most likely never experience it ever again in my life...right? That doesn't mean I will try and take advantage of it, I will still have to complain a little bit. I think that climate is one of those things that can invoke the senses. You know like a smell or a song can remind you of memories, well I believe the heat does the same. As I have begun suffering again, I have been reflecting on what it was like the last time I felt this and it brought back many fond memories of Sonoyta and the horrible heat there, but the wonderful times I had! Well, this week was a little....long and fast at the same time! This has been quite difficult this week in some aspects. It seems like we just can't get investigators to understand sometimes. They just don't want to understand the importance of this message that we have! The lady we are teaching didn't come to church yesterday.... :( She worked late into the morning and didn't get up in time to come to church, so her date for this Saturday has fallen. However, we have come up with a deal. If she goes to church this coming Sunday, we will be able to do the baptism right after the services that afternoon. That means that she wouldn't be confirmed until the next week, but that is okay because we would still be getting a baptism. We went this week with her 9 year old son to see what he thought and, well, we've added him to the teaching pool and he has decided that he wants to get baptized with his mom! So we are looking at 2 baptisms for this coming Sunday! They are doing so well though and she is super duper excited! She came to the ward activity that we had today and was just chatting with was the sisters like she seemed to fit in really well with everyone and seems to be comfortable at church which is very important. The other family slowly seem to be drifting off a little. They still want all of their family to start listening to us, but the dad doesn't seem too happy about all of that. We are trying to get a lesson to talk with him and see what we can do. They like the lessons and all, but there is still some doubt or something that is holding them back. We just have to try and figure out what that is. There is the other Family...well, they are just rough! The Mom is a bit sensitive and the daughter doesn't know much about God or religion which makes it hard sometimes. They are the family where the dad is an inactive member and the mom and daughter want to learn about the church. So we are trying to reactivate an inactive and baptized 2 non-members. There have been 2 events that have happened that have almost jeopardized our relationship with them. Each of these events haven't really been our fault, and have been complete accidents, but since the mom is so sensitive it has a little rough and we have thought that we almost lost investigators a few times. However, yesterday we sat down with them and they were in good spirits and we were able to talk about how they have felt and what they want from us and how we can better help them, etc. So we will see how it goes with that. They are a neat family, but will just take a little time and patience on both ends. We had a neat experience with them one day when we went with them. The mom was telling us how the daughter told her that one time when we were there with them teaching, that the daughter could see a bright glow surrounding us. That made me feel quite neat! It really shows that we really are God's messengers and that His Spirit is always with us to testify and help. There was a sister in Nacozari that would always tell us, every time that we went to eat at her house, that God's angels were eating at her house and she felt really blessed. She always referred to us as God's Angels and it this experience made me think of that. This week we did an activity as a zone that we called, "The Bomb!" We planned that we would go to our areas and one day go to a place very populated like a park or flea market or something with a lot of people and just go talk and invite people like crazy to church. We handed out pamphlets like crazy! Apparently one zone did this once and they had a ton of people in attendance at church and got quite a few baptisms out of an activity like this one, so we decided to try it. Well, it didn't go so hot! Of all the people we talked to and invited, not one person showed up to church the next day. That was a little depressing, but oh well! Everyone has their feel agency! At least we tried to plant seeds. This week has really been a reflection week for me and a week of being very grateful for the parents I have and EVERYTHING they have taught me. I just can't even comprehend all that they have taught me! All that I am is because of them! I really like many of the traits that I have like being humble, patient, basically never getting made-or at least not showing it- cleanliness, and many other things because these are traits my parents have and they have passed them on to me! I read in a conference talk or something recently that said that for a parent to successfully raise a child is to teach them to live without them someday, to do things for themselves....something like that. I don't really remember. But I have feel that this is what my parents have done! They are successfully helped me to live on my own and take care of myself and my surroundings. One of the most important things they have taught me is about priorities and always putting God first. I have talked with less activities this week and have realized that one problem they have in life is that they don't have their priorities straight. I am thankful that my choices when I was younger were: you go to church or you go to church. There wasn't really even that option. You just go to church. And I am thankful for that because now I know that Sundays we go to church and I don't even have to think about that. I don't even have to think about if I want to get up early to go. I just do it because that is what I have been taught and I have come to know the truth of it! I am so thankful for my parents and all they have done for me and all they do for me and the sacrifices they make! I love you mom and dad! Well, this has been quite a fun letter to write! I hope you all enjoy it as much as I did! Haha! I hope you all are well! Thanks for all your love and support! ¡Yo sé que vive mi Señor! Con Mucho Amor, Elder Joyner