Hola again familia,
To explain the photos, I received a package this week and could not have been happier to see that it was sweet bread from Penny! Elder Barajas and I just feasted. So so good! The other is a picture of La Fiesta Patrias that our ward had. It was a great party to celebrate the independence of all the Latin American countries. It was on Friday and was a good time. Food from 10 or 12 different countries.
Hope that you are all doing well! Thank you for your prayers and love. Looks like everyone has been pretty busy but happy. We have Elder Ellis coming this week to tour our mission. We are very excited for this! We spent all day today doing a mission wide service project in which we cleaned and dejunked (is that a real word or just used in our family?) and organized everything the mission owned. We get to have a Zone Conference with him on Friday. I am really excited for that. He asked President Ashton to have all of us missionaries prepare a five minute talk on Luke 9:23-25. I have really enjoyed that assignment and taken quite a bit of time. I entitled my talk "Deny Yourselves of All Ungodliness". On Friday in the Zone Conference, Elder Ellis will call out a few missionaries at random to give their talks. Should be fun. I will write mine up next week it I have time.
Anyways, some things I have been thinking about recently is what I am grateful for. I have realized how much I take for granted and how true the saying is that you don't appreciate something until it is gone. Some of the things I am grateful for is a bed and brakes that work. My brakes went out on my bike because of a weird glitch and I had a few interesting experiences, but I brought it back into the store and all is well.
Something else I have been thinking about is the role of the Holy Ghost in missionary work. We have been having some incredible finding situations and have four new investigators this week. What a blessing. Thank you for your prayers, they are surely being heard and answered. I have realized though that if these investigators don't feel the Spirit, they are not going to progress in the Gospel or keep committments. Elder Barajas and I have been talking and praying and studying how to teach with the Spirit. In Doctrine and Covenants it says something to the effect of "if ye have not the Spirit, ye shall not teach". I have realized that this is because without the Spirit we are just 19 year old boys with white shirts and ties.
I continue to feel the Spirit very strongly in my life through study, prayers, and the Sacrament, but I have realized that this is not enough, I need to be able to help others feel it. So if anyone has thoughts, experiences, or advice, please let me know. The work is going well. My ward is wonderful! Our bishop is 27 or 28 (David, I think you can empathize) and everyone is kind and beginning to catch the Spirit of the work.
We are being blessed greatly and I am so grateful to participate in this work. I remember a testimony meeting we had as a district in the MTC. I bore my testimony that this work was the greatest work on the earth and that it has been prophesied since the earliest times in scripture. I know that this is the Gathering of Israel and it truly is a marvellous work and a wonder.
Things are great! I love you all. Elder Barajas and I have become best friends. We sure do enjoy the work. I pray for you often.