Sunday, May 17, 2015

Friday, May 15, 2015

Welcoming another new group of missionaries!!

The morning after the farewell dinner we have a welcome breakfast for the new missionaries arriving from the Mexico City MTC.  This time all the missionaries were from Mexico with the exception of one sister from the Dominican Republic

It is always fun to meet the new ones. They usually arrive very tired (they get up around 2:30 to pack, or some just stay up all night) and very excited and ready to work. And the only thing they really care about is who will be their companion and where will they work.

But first we feed them breakfast. It is usually around 10:00 by the time they arrive at the house and we have everything ready. I switch it around, but lately we have been eating eggs with ham, tomatoes and potatoes mixed in them with refried beans on the side, tortillas, salsa, fresh fruit, and juice. This time we also had slices of roasted poblano peppers with fresh corn, onion and cream cheese. Yum! (But a lot of work so we probably won't do the peppers again.:-)

During breakfast we go around the table and everyone introduces themselves. Next we give some general training like--"the next few weeks are going to be some of the hardest of your life and you will probably cry every day". (It is just better for them to know that right up front.:-)

While President interviews each missionary personally, the assistants meet with each Latin missionary individually to review the English language program and help them set goals to learn English while in the mission field. Meanwhile I am meeting with groups of 4-6 explaining health procedures. Then we head to the church building for additional training and to meet their companions!

Here are some pictures from the day. The trainers are on the right.

The three sisters who arrived in the morning:

 The elders who arrived in the morning:
 And the companionships!

And then we had two missionaries who arrived later in the day. Their training was done the next morning at the office. Here are their pictures.

 In this case the trainer is on the left.:-)
We are so glad to have them and look forward to great things from each of them!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

That time again . . . Another Farewell

This group included missionaries from four countries,  our first American sisters and two elders who returned home for several months each in the middle of their missions for medical reasons and then returned. Elder Mendoza has the distinct honor of celebrating three Christmases with us!
We will certainly miss them all. 

Final Transfer
Hermana Brittni Newbold--Tooele, Utah, USA
Hermana Ashlyn Naegle--South Jordan, Utah, USA
Hermana Linda Bazan--Oaxaca, Mexico
Hermana Kathia Castillo--Veracruz, Mexico
Hermana Carly Huchendorf--Rexburg, Idaho, USA
Hermana Brylie Warburton--Weiser, Idaho, USA
Elder Abinadi Mendoza--Pachuca, Hidalgo, Mexico
Elder Velazquez--didn't feel out the paper work 
Elder Esteban Acevedo--Talcahuano, Chile
Hermana Dulce Cruz--Veracruz, Mexico
Hermana Whitney Ford--Riverton, Utah, USA
Hermana Carly Kortas--Almont, Michigan, USA
Elder Kevin Ramos--Ahuachapan, El Salvador
Elder Maximiliano Hernandez--Ramos Arizpe, Coahuila, Mexico
Elder Moisés Cordero--Pachuca, Hidalgo, Mexico

And here are a few pictures from our last night together:

How can anyone not love these cute Hermanas?!!

 The entire group of sisters
Our pioneers.  The first American sister missionaries to serve in the Mexico Guadalajara Mission. There were four others in their group originally. One sister is now serving in Illinois due to knee problems, another broke her ankle and went home for three months so will be returning in August, and another had to go home a couple months early due to health. The fourth is a Latin sister from the United States who entered the MTC three weeks later and so opted to go home during the next change instead.
 And our wonderful group of elders!
 My Mother's Day dinner. :-)
 Elder Mendoza and his ugly socks.
We wish them all the very best!! And hope Elder Mendoza gets some new socks!!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Mission Council

One of my most favorite meetings is Mission Leadership Council (MLC). And this past week we had one of the best ones we have ever had. I am not sure what made the difference but the Spirit was there in ABUNDANCE. It was a very sweet and powerful day.

President Wagner began the day by teaching the Area Plan and charging all the missionaries to not only teach it in their divisions and zone classes but to also take it to all the active and less active members in their areas and teach them as well.

That was followed by my part where I taught "How to Teach Like the Savior" from the January Ensign article by the General Sunday School Presidency. Everyone received the article in advance so they could study it and the corresponding pages in Preach My Gospel. We then talked about the importance of following the example of the Savior in all things, including the way we taught and discussed ways to help those under our stewardship apply the principles.

The assistants then taught the fundamental lesson on the Book of Mormon. This has been taught many times and at times the missionaries treat it lightly due to their familiarity with the topic. But this day was not like any ordinary day. The Spirit was so strong and many felt it bear witness to them about the truthfulness of the book. When some seemed surprised the Spirit would testify so profoundly during a practice President Wagner reminded the missionaries that to the Spirit there are no practices, and they are investigators. I loved that.

Then President Wagner ended by teaching out of Chapter 5 on the Book of Mormon. Around this same time my children were at a wedding at the Salt Lake Temple for my niece. So as I wouldn't feel left out, they sent me a picture of them there together. President Wagner posted this picture on the wall during our training and used it to teach the purpose behind everything we do. Eternal Families. Our entire purpose here is to live so we can have an eternal family in the next life. How grateful we are for our 8 children and 10 grandchildren and how dearly we pray to live so they can all be ours forever.

It was sweet and made me cry.

Here are some pictures from the meeting:

Our current mission council.

 The Picture President Wagner projected on the wall.

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Our last week of interviews!

This past week we traveled the north side of the mission for interviews. We loved being back out with the missionaries and spending one on one time with them. (Or six on one in my case:-)

Here are some pictures from our travels!

We started with these four. They told me they were Vocal Point. Okay. Didn't get a chance to hear them sing, but at least it explains why they were all wearing blue ties!

 Zone leaders--on the right--doing a little training!

 Yes, Mom, I got the package!
 Gearing up for some powerful preaching!

 How they beat the sun, where at this time of year it is hot! hot! hot!

He finally got his prize for winning the scripture chase!! (I did not forget!)

 Making sure we have all our materials before heading out . . .

 Closed eyes. Oops! That is why I usually take two pictures! But at least they both have smiles on their faces!