Tuesday, May 5, 2015

{Week 73} Polanco - May 5, 2015

First of all...
MOM!!!!! Happy 46th birthday! I love you so much! 
Just for your information, today is also the Mexican celebration of the battle of Puebla... everyone has school off, but that's about the extent of their partying.

So this has been a fun week! 
On Monday, we got to go to the CCM (Mexico City MTC) to pick up the new missionaries - there is only one new sister, Hna Wong from Baja California. The CCM is really pretty and clean, so I was happy we got to go there. 
The CCM - Hna Wong, Hna Ingram, me, the Assistants Elder Schaap and Elder Perea, and two of the new Elders, Flores and Pacheco

We then went back to the office, and spent a little while training the greenies with the Assistants (and playing a little basketball with a volleyball and a bucket screwed on the wall). 

Then we came to the President's house with Hna Wong where we spent the night! We slept on really comfy mattresses, but it was so hot that night that we hardly slept.  The next morning, we went to the Changes Meeting, and enjoyed that a lot. A bunch of members from our ward came to the meeting to say goodbye to Hna Mercedes, Hna Luque, and Elder Evans. They brought Mariachis which was hilarious - a bunch of dressed up Mexican men singing to the missionaries! It was crazy. 

Then we came back to the President's house with the Assistants and all the missionaries that were going home. We had a nice meal, and a testimony meeting. Then we sent the Elders to the mission offices, and we stayed with the Sisters that were going home! - Hnas Luque, Mercedes, Williams, Nance, and Monarez. We enjoyed our evening together, playing games and chatting. Then, Hna Ingram and I slept on the blow up air mattresses in front of the open porch door - and it was raining outside. We had such an amazing sleep! It was the best sleep I've had in awhile. Then we woke up at 3:30 to take Hna Luque and Hna Mercedes to the airport! That was fun - but super sad. I hugged them both so hard. I love them tons, and it's really sad to think that I might not ever see them again. I cried for a little while after we said goodbye to them. 
Farewells to Hnas Luque and Mercedes at the airport.

Then we raced over to the mission office (this is the President, Sis Stutz, Hna Ingram, and I) to get the next batch of Elder's to board the plane. They were going to be up and ready waiting for us so that when we pulled into the office at 6 they could jump in and we could leave... but when we got there only Elder Schaap (the old assistant that's going home) was ready - the rest were still sleeping. But they all got up fast and were ready to go. That was a hilarious airport trip because Elder Evans had one suitcase, and a laundry bag filled with stuff that he was planning to send through the baggage thing. When we got to the airport, he had to juggle all his stuff because his suitcase was too heavy. So he and Elder Norr were there in the line opening his suitcases and throwing his stuff around. Then they wouldn't accept his laundry bag unless he plastic wrapped it. So he had this giant blue plastic wrapped laundry bag ball that he checked into the baggage. It was so funny. After they took off, we did one more airport run with a few others, then finally headed back to our area and got to work. 
Hna Taylor and Elder Evans - two missionaries from the same hometown.

And yesterday, the President and Sis Stutznegger took us to Ciudadela - a market place where they sell Mexican clothes and trinkets. We had a blast there and I bought two dresses! We spent the whole day with them, and that night we had appointments, so that's why we didn't have time to write. And today, we worked in the morning, then we had to come to the president's house again - we're having a meeting with him and the assistants tomorrow to plan our training program for the year. So right now we're in his house doing nothing, and that's why we decide to write today! So I'm sitting in his nice office on his huge fancy computer in a really comfy chair writing ya'll! 
Hna Taylor with the Stutzneggers and what looks like a little Mexican man trinket!

And when Elder Evans went home, they took his companion Choc out of the area. So we now have the biggest area in our whole zone! We are now the only missionaries in our ward, and our ward is one of the biggest. My area practically just more than doubled in size. When Hna Ingram and I finish our mission, they're planning to shut down our ward completely for missionaries. We're kind of sad about that, but we feel like it will be really good for the ward in the long run. We told the Bishop and the ward mission leader the other day that that was the plan, and they were sad, but now they're making a whole bunch of plans about how they're going to work - this ward is suddenly more excited about missionary work than ever, which is ironic because they're taking the missionaries out!

But we're seeing some really good stuff happen! We've got a bunch of investigators...
- Alejandro - the elders were teaching him. He's already come to church like 6 times. but he has a ton of doubts and is really not sure what he wants to do. But yesterday we had a great lesson with him - we challenged him to pray right there with us and ask God if it was all true and if he should get baptized. So he did! We all kneeled down and he prayed - Hna Ingram and I were both praying at the same time so hard in our hearts that he would feel the spirit. When he ended his prayer, he just kind of sat there with his eyes closed for a good five minutes. Then we all sat down again, and he told us that he felt really peaceful. So right now we're working with him for May 16th for his baptism. He's a hard case, but I know that he can do it. We're also getting to know his family a lot better - his wife and Ana and his 2 kids. We're trying to arrange teaching them too.
- Nora - So we contacted her son Alberto by knocking on their door, and he gave us a return appointment. But when we came back, he was sleeping, but Nora let us in to teach her. She loved our message. The next morning we dropped by to take her to church with us, and she and her husband Jose came! They only stayed for Sacrament meeting, but they liked it, and Jose wanted to know when we'll come teach him too. So they're both doing pretty great!
- Edith - this is the mom (her daughter Edith got baptized a couple weeks ago) she's great, but she just needs to get married so she can get baptized - and her husband works in the army so he's never home and it's been hard to find a time for it to happen. She's great, we just don't want her to get cold, and decide not to do it.
- Carlos - he's progressing really well, but on Sunday he had to leave town and didn't come to church, so his baptismal date fell through. :( But we'll be seeing him on Thursday and we'll work with him to put a new goal.
- Bertha - She was a reference from a new convert named Lourdes. We actually just barely taught her for the first time this morning, and it was really good. The Spirit was strong. And she told us that she felt really peaceful, and that that was what she had been missing in her life. So we have some high hopes for her. She's married, but her husband doesn't want anything, and her kids are really cute - her daughter is 5 and her son is 3 and is deaf. 

These are the investigators that we have right now, and they could all use a ton of prayers! 

We also have high hopes for a family that we met on Sunday. We were walking down the street, and we passed a lady and her daughter. They kind of did the double take and looked at us, (but that's normal here), then kept walking. I actually felt like I should contact them, but for some reason I didn't. Then the mom stopped and shouted after us, asking if we spoke English. Her daughter had some English homework with her, but didn't know how to do it. So they took us to their house which was in the other street, and let us in and gave us juice, and we helped the little girl with her homework for about 30 min. While doing that, the whole family gathered around to see who the strange white girls in their house were, so we started chatting and introducing ourselves and explaining that we were missionaries. We told them that we'd like to come back to keep helping with her English homework, but also to teach them all about God - and they said yes! So on Friday we have an appointment to go teach them. It's a family of 5 - and they seem really great. We have some high hopes for them - they could also use your prayers! 

So it's been a great week! i love it here. Hna Ingram and I are having a lot of fun together. We speak some crazy Spanglish and it's hilarious. We get along great, so that makes it easy to work hard and help people. I'm loving life and can't believe that the time is rapidly coming to an end. The members here looove reminding us that we're going home soon. But we're having a great time.  I love Mexico. 

Hope you all have a great week. You're all amazing. Katia, I'm glad you're okay. Jenna, you rock that Bball. Jordy and Carlee, keep up the the good work in softball! Mackenzie, I love you. Chelle, I love you too. Dad, thanks for your letters. I love hearing from you. Logan, you're pretty awesome too. Addison, I don't know you yet, but I'm looking forward to hugging you! And Mom, thank you so much for faithfully writing me every week. I love reading your letters. You're pretty much the best mom that exists. Thanks for being mine. I hope you have a great birthday and I'll talk to you on Sunday. I love you all! Be good, say your prayers, and give mom a huge hug for me! And be thinking about any souvenirs that you want me to bring you - I'll be asking you all about it on Sunday. Love you!

-Hermana Taylor
Hna Luque and I.

Hna Mercedes and I.

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