Monday, February 24, 2014


Dear Family, This is the best time of my life! I love being a missionary and teaching the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ. On Tuesday we were on our way to English class and the Relief Society President called and told us that the Relief Society was doing a Book of Mormon kickoff that night and she wanted us to teach las hermanas how to study by reading 1 Nephi 1-3 with them. It was interesting but a wonderful experience. We made the comparison between Lehi and Joseph Smith and helped them realize how fascinating the scriptures are. We spent a lot of time on the last verse of 1 Nephi 1: 20 And when the Jews heard these things they were angry with him; yea, even as with the prophets of old, whom they had acast out, and stoned, and slain; and they also bsought his life, that they might take it away. But behold, I, Nephi, will show unto you that the tender cmercies of the Lord are over all those whom he hath chosen, because of their faith, to make them mighty even unto the power of ddeliverance. We told them that Nephi invites us to do something here and asked what that something was. They didn't get it so we explained that he says he will show unto us the tender mercies of the Lord. The question becomes, how does he show this to us? As we read through 1 and 2 Nephi, he shows us. We invited them to look for, write down and consider the tender mercies of the Lord that Nephi shows us and that we receive from the Lord in our own lives. I am pretty sure that whole conversation was something that dad asked about during family scripture study one night. It is amazing how often I reflect on family scripture study and how much I learned. At the very end of the class, I stood up and bore my testimony of the Book of Mormon. I then took the opportunity to speak to a group of mothers and future mothers. I explained to them that I have read the Book of Mormon almost every day of my life because each night my mother would gather us and we would read. I explained that if she had not done this my father would have but that it was because of the influence of my mother that I have come to know and love the Book of Mormon. I explained to them that the only reason that my mom would go through the trouble of gathering fighting children that often acted like Laman and Lemuel was because she read the Book of Mormon every day and she knew it was true. The Spirit came very strongly and they all realized the incredible responsibility they have as mothers and also the wonderful influence they can have on their children. Natalia Ulloa (the Ortega's granddaughter) finished the Book of Mormon this week. We think it took her about 7 weeks to read. She finished it at school and texted us. She said it was the most beautiful book she has ever read and that when she finished it she wanted to jump and cry and laugh and that she was filled with the Holy Ghost. The best part though is that after calming down, she turn back to the Title Page and started again. There is no better way to convert ourselves than using the tools the Lord has given us. Kimberly and Eduardo Colon started their temple prep classes yesterday. They are doing really well and are so excited to go to the temple to be sealed. We are going to do baptisms with the Ortegas and Norma on Friday and they will bring their own family names. Yesterday we had an extra half hour and we didn't know who to go visit. We talked about visiting a former and then going to visit Norma's family to try and teach them for the first time. We decided to visit Norma's family first but after praying changed the order. We visited hermana Acosta and caught them on their way out the door. She set an appointment and then committed to come to church next week. We then went to Norma's and we pulled up, said a prayer, and as we got out of the car they pulled up and her step-dad for the first time let us teach him. It was a miracle. If we had gone to Norma's first and then the Acostas we wouldn't have been able to find either at home and wouldn't have been able to help them come unto Christ. I am so grateful for the tender mercies of the Lord and for the guidance we receive each day from the Holy Ghost. Norma's step-dad said he would be baptized as he comes to know these things are true. It was a great blessing and an answer to prayer. We then taught Giselle Matamoros the Word of Wisdom. She is the Ortega's neighbor so they came. At the beginning she told us that God would just have to forgive her because she would not be able to give up coffee. At the end of the lesson she looked at us and said, "I promise that I will never drink coffee again. I know the Lord will strengthen me and bless me." The Gospel changes us. Also, Rodolfo is down to smoking 6 cigarettes a day. Two weeks ago he was smoking ten. Yesterday he only smoked three. It is special to see the change that has happened and the joy that has come into his life. There are other addictions that are even harder to overcome still but we are taking it one step at a time. I hope you are all well. Enjoy the Gilbert temple dedication! Thank you for your prayers and faith. Please pray that Madison (Giselle's granddaughter) will receive permission to be baptized from her parents. I love you. Elder Case P.S. That bird scares me to death. It is Giselle's. Every time we walk up to the door it screams "hola, hola, hola". The picture of the man with the deer skull is Fider Gonzalez. He is an insane Mexican and I love him to death. We showed up the other night and he was sticking metal through the skull so that he could hang it from the horn pull string in his 18 wheeler. It reminded me of Blake Smith (Is he the one that put the big horn in his truck?). I think I have explained this before but when we first stopped by the Ortegas in June, every time we knocked on the door, Blanca would answer and point to her Virgin Mary and say, "Soy Catolica". Well now when missionaries from other faiths come and knock on her door she points to the Plan of Salvation pamphlet and says, "Soy Mormona". I love this Gospel!

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