Monday, April 28, 2014

Week 72: Menudo, it's Not Just a Boy Band from the 80's. It was David's Lunch!

Hey family!

How is everyone doing?

Mom and Dad, it seems like you guys had some really busy weeks.  Dad with you traveling a lot, and mama working your butt off, haha.  Well, that's good.  I get Tyler's and Lindsay's letters, ...and blake's.  They all sound like they're doing awesome.  Now all of us cousins are out on missions!!!!!  What an amazing feeling having the family serve the Lord.

Mom you said that Blake is having a hard time with French...yeah, i remember those days struggling with Spanish.  It was so hard but it comes with time and lots of prayers.  Now I'm having a hard time with English! haha.  I'm starting to forget how to speak well.  Like my comp studies English everyday, and asks about what some words mean, and I have no idea.  Oh well, Spanish is better!

This week.....holy poop!  I was so so so so hot.  It got to 45 degrees Celcius.  That's 113 in Farenhiet!  I was honestly sweating like a Mexican dog.  Actually, the stray dogs don't even walk in the streets when it gets that hot.  It's just us missionaries walking in the streets when its that hot.   Yesterday, as we were walking to the food.  My forearm touched my belt buckle and it burned me!  haha   That's how hot the air gets.  And they say its going to get even hotter in May. Bring it on!

I got to get you guys caught up on some interesting food I have eaten.  So about a month ago i had the wonderful privilege to eat Menudo..or cow stomach.  I was just about to throw up!  My comp was laughing at me the whole time because of my face while i was eating.  I managed to eat the whole stomach. I just put a piece in my mouth and drank some coke and swallowed it whole!  haha  I was dying....

Another thing that I haven't eaten before is pigeon.  Last Monday, I had the opportunity to eat a pigeon. One investigator that we had killed two pigieons with his BB gun and then plucked the feathers and fried them. I actually liked it a lot!  It tastes better than chicken.

My comp and I are actually finding some new people to teach!  I'm so happy for that. We have been working hard to get references from everyone.  And this past week we contacted 19 references!  And we found 12 new people!  Oh yeah.  With every reference that we contact we just teach them right there in front of their house.

It makes me really sad some times because of how hard the peoples hearts are.  There was this one lady who started to attack the Church, saying things about what we teach.  The biggest apostatsy that i have heard in my mission came from her.  She said I read the Book of Mormon and all it talks about is Joseph Smith, and it doesn't talk anything about Christ....Then I showed her the front cover where it says "another testament of Jesus Christ." Then I shared my testimony about how God works through apostles and profetas and other stuff.

Then another time we contacted another reference and it was some old guy. He told us that he has read the bible for 45 years, so we started to talk about prophets and how God is the same yesterday, today and forever and always will be.  And then we talked a little about joseph smith and how Christ has come again, and called other prophets like he has done before. When i told him that, he told me that it wasn't true and told us to leave... Oh my gosh.  I was pretty sad after that. I actually wanted to cry because no one was accepting us, and just rejecting us at every house we went to.

But at night we finally got accepted and we taught a bunch of sisters. And what do you know?? One of them is wanting to get baptized. She easily accepted the baptismal date. It was a spiritual lesson.

We have one investigator that is progressing. His name is Herlindo. We found him when i first got here. We found him drunk out of his mind. And we stopped visiting him because he was always drunk. But about a month ago we started again to visit. And he is doing so much better. You can see the happiness in his face that is growing little by little. And now he hasn't drunk in a week and a half!!  And he went to church yesterday!!  He told us that was the first time in 15 years that he has gone to church, and he liked it.  He is a guy with a character. haha

Anyways that was my week. I love you guys. hey and I get to talk with you all in 13 days!!  I will be calling the 10th of May. That's a Saturday.  Talk to you all next week.

Elder McNamara

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Week 71: Becoming Better Leaders Through Example: Loving the Work!

What an awesome week!  I had a lot of fun and things went pretty well!  And no, yesterday i did not conduct the meeting. or even pass the sacrament. We had 22 people there so that's good. But i did teach the class, which went pretty well!

Wednesday was the district meeting and i taught the missionaries about how through Christ we can be clean and faith. I felt really good teaching it and we practice teaching it also. I'm really liking being a lider in the mission, its fun and challenging and stressful sometimes. But its all good. I really like teaching the district meetings, that's my favorite part.

So Thursday there was a capacitation for district liders en tampico. So i got to take the 5 hour bus ride to Tampico. It was really interesting and I definitely learned some new things, and things that can help me to be a better lider en my area.

President Jodan talked to us about becoming a better lider than we were yesterday, and having to put the example for the rest of the missions, And he said that it us, the district leaders, that are most important in the mission. Because we have to bring to pass the Area plan for missionary work in mexico that the 70s had put in place. It's because we talk with all the elders every night and are teaching them very week.  So WE have a lot of contact with all the elders.

Friday we had another meeting with president and he taught us more things with the assistants. And then we traveled back to valles. And elder Nieto and I couldn't travel to our area because it was too late and we would have gotten back to our house at like 10 at night. So we stayed with the Zone leaders. And i had the worst night sleep of my life! haha 3 guys on 2 beds. Oh gosh.

Anyways that was my week. I actually enjoyed it a lot. I'm gaining a better love for missionary work and i'm seeing the difference! It's awesome.

I love you family!  Have a good week!  Way to get your first kiss Julie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!:) hahaha

Elder McNamara

Week 70: To Know God and that The Church is True

So this week was alright.  It is starting to get so hot here. They say that this zone that i'm in is the hottest zone there is in the mission.  And, oh man....IT'S HOT!  And its going to get even hotter.  I miss the wintertime here but ill be okay.

So this week like every other week, we have been trying to find new investigators!! Do you guys know how hard that is?  Ya, so hard.  So we found this less active young girl that is married and has a little baby. They're 19 and 18 and are living by themselves. The husband isn't a member and has talked with missionaries a lot. He wants to get baptized and all, he just can't go to church because of his job.  So once he gets over that challenge he will get baptized.

We also talked with his little brother, who is 15 and loves Xbox and video games and all that. So i talked with him about all that good stuff so he would feel comfortable and not think, "who are these weird dudes talking about god?"

So then we started teaching them about baptism, and to pray to know if what we taught them is true, and i shared my testimony about how i learned for myself the first time that this Church is true.  I told him that i played Xbox a lot, and the stuff about God didn't really mean much to me, but one day that i saw a video about Christ at EFY i felt something that i had never felt before and that night i prayed about it and received an answer. I told him that he might think 'oh cool, the love of God,' and stuff like that (all sarcastically); but that everyone needs to feel that love and know that God is watching over you. It was really powerful. so we'll see what happens there.

Then Wednesday, i did divisions with the other area in my district.  In the area of Tamuin.  Its a little town, bigger than the one I'm in. So we took the 2 hour bus ride and got there. We taught a young women named Kathia. She's an investigator and her  ex-boyfriend is Mormon.  So that's how she knew the church.  The missionaries had dropped her, but then we returned to her that day.

I was trying to see where she's at in the knowledge of the gospel and all that, and seeing what she has understood from the missionaries. Then i started to teach her about prayer; how she can receive an answer from the Lord.  It was probably one of the leccions that i have felt the spirit strongly. I testified to her that she is a daughter of God and that HE wants her to know the truth and to help her en every aspect of her life.

And i read in John 14 where Christ says...I wont leave you comfortless, i will come to you....The peace I give you, the peace i leave with you. She was feeling the spirit big time. Then we all sat there in silence and then my comp for that day invited her to be baptized and she accepted. That just goes to show you that there's a time for everyone and that this gospel is so true and that the Love of God is for every single one of His children.

Thursday we went to Valles for a zone conference with president and then i talked with president afterwards. The thing is, is that we didn't get back to our area until 10 at night; haha crazy.

Then yesterday, hardly anyone went to church,  including our branch president. So guess what? I was presiding and i led the meeting again, haha, and passed the sacrament to the 7 people that were there. Then at night we visited a family that was preparing to go to the temple.

The stake was going to pay for their traveling cost and the branch president was going to pay for their garments. SO, they had everything paid for..but you know what happened? They didn't go because they said they wanted to have good clothes to go to the temple.....that's probably the lamest excuse that i have heard; to deny the wonderful blessing of being sealed to your family. I was so mad. So know what we talked about that night? About sacrifices, and i and my comp planched them.

We talked about the purpose of God and about a family in the Philippines that sold their house and all their possessions to be able to go to the temple. I'm pretty sure they understand now, ha.

Well that was my week for you all. I love you and thanks for the emails. I'm staying here in Tanquian for another change, haha oh yaa.....

Elder McNamara

Monday, April 7, 2014

Week 69: First Week that David Received No Emails or Letters ??

Hey family. 

Hope everyone's doing alright. I didn't get one email today, except for the small sentence from mom and Blake . You know how important those emails are to me every week and are like oxygen to a missionary. 

Well anyways, this week was alright, I have been sick all week, walking and working all day everyday.  I am more than exhausted all week long.  But I'll be alright in a couple days. 

Nothing too interesting happened this week. I did divisions with the Zone Leader, Elder Cutler.  He is from Draper, Utah too, haha.  And, he went to Alta!  He was a year ahead of me though.  I never knew him before the mission but we know the same kids back at Utah and my track coach Doug.  He was fun to talk with him about those high school days and other stuff. 

We have been working with a family lately that's really good and nice.  With the mom, Elvira and Julianna. and her kids. The little kids are so respectful and pay attention to everything we teach. There's a little girl that's like 9, her name is Dulce, when we go to their house she respectful puts her hands together and down by her legs and waits until we shake her hand. Shes cute. And she reads all the parts in the Book of Mormon we leave with the whole family.  I really hope the get baptized and are able to go to church this Sunday! 

The general conference was really good.  I enjoyed it.  We went to Valles about 2 and half hours away to watch it in the stake center.  I got to watch it in a room with other elders, in English.  I liked all the talks. Especially the one by President Utchdorf, when he and Tommy Monson go on Air Force One, and Pres. Utchdorf got to sit in the captain seat and he started to have memories of his days of flying...then he put his hand on the throttle and then Pres. Monson said...."Dieter, don't even think about it." haha   I laughed so hard.

And the other talk by Elder Scott, when he told about when he dated his wife, when she told him something that changed his life ...when she told him that she is going to marry a faithful returned missionary ...and then Elder Scott all of the sudden had a desire to serve a mission!  I liked that a lot too. haha.   And, of course the talk by our Prophet, about being more kind and loving towards all of God's children.

I hope you all liked Conference.  I think about you guys daily, and pray for you all everyday.  I miss you and love you.  Only one month until i get to talk with you (Mother's Day), and only 7 months until i get to see you all in person! 

Elder McNamara

PS:  Dad, thanks for your instant emails and always being there for me, especially today when I didn't receive any emails.  It made me feel much better, and not so forgotten.  It really helped, and it was fun.   I love you very much.  

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Week 68: 600 B.C. Ruins, Julianne & Juliana and Burning Leaves

I had a good week this week!  All is well, ...all is well!

The reason that I didn't write yesterday was because we changed our P-day to today (this week) so that we could go to the Ruins of the ancient American people. It was pretty cool!  I enjoyed it a lot!  It was really interesting because the first thing that they showed us was an figure of a women that the dude said it was dated to 600 BC and that the oldest date was 600 BC, and the guy kept on talking and saying that right now the archaeologists are trying to find out how they got here in the Americas.

So me, as a missionary, of course I know how they got here.  The Book of Mormon starts out 600 years before Christ, and I know how they got here.  I tried sharing it with the tour guide, but he wasn't that interested.  It's all good.

My comp and I are finding a lot of new investigators.  We found this one family that is really nice, and I think that they are prepared by the Lord.  We put a baptism date in the first lesson with the mom and her older daughter.  Guess what the daughter's name is?  Juliana, haha.  I told her I have a sister with that name. Anyways, they are a really good family and receptive to the spirit and all the things we have taught them so far.

Sunday night we were looking and contacting new people and we found this one young women, 20 years old, just burning leaves so we talked to her and got to know her.  I couldn't believe she was 20, because i thought she looked 30. But right there is when it hit me that I'm 20 too! haha.  I don't feel like a 20 years old, I still feel like I just barely left high school.  So I think I went through my mid-life crisis.

Anyways this young women is married and has a baby, and now they are getting divorced after 2 years. How hard is that?  That's definitely not happening to me. But we started teaching about the atonement and then baptism and then she accepted a date for her baptism. We did all that standing there watching her burn leaves. The Lord works in small weird ways sometimes!

I miss all you guys like always.  I'm so excited for General Conference, and hope you all are too!
I love you.  Have a good week!

Elder McNamara