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

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