Monday, December 17, 2012

Letter 74

December 10, 2012


Well the weather here sure had a change on the cold side. I busted out my mangas largas today (long sleeves). Also today since I'm feeling in the Chrithmath Spirit I'm gonna get my picture taken with Old Saint Nick at the mall. I couldn’t go last week because the member that was going to take us never called and so we just played volleyball. I'll try to send it to you afterwards via email.

To answer some questions. No I didn’t know that I was on TV but I love that picture! hahah Elder Curletti is my favorite! (Jordan’s picture was on Mormon Times on Sunday – they were talking about the ladies that put together the tree at the Festival of the Trees in honor of the McAllen Texas Missionaries that were killed last year). That’s really cool! And no I never sent a tie... no one ever asked me :(. (I was told that the tree skirt for that tree was made from ties donated by missionaries from that mission – I saw one that looked just like the tie Jordan wore in his mission pictures and wondered if he had sent it)

I've been thinking about what I want to go into and I think I might go into Graphic Design... maybe illustration... maybe business... who knows? I’ll talk to you about it on Christmas.

This week in our area we are doing pretty good. Elder Williams and I found a few PM families that we are starting to teach, but during the lessons that we had with them the member got really off topic and we lost control. We had a lesson with the mother of one of the sisters in the English ward. She's 87 years old and has heard the missionaries lots of times and so far dose not want to join the church. We tried to get to know her and help her to feel comfortable with us and everything, then we tried to start the lesson and the members with us started teaching about SEALINGS IN THE TEMPLE! I don’t know why they thought that would help at all... anyway... We are planning this week to sit down with these members and sharing with them our lesson plans so they know their part and wont highjack the lesson AGAIN. sheeesh...

Mario is doing pretty good. He's is under a lot of stress because of a financial situation he is in right now and that in turn is making him really sick. He called me on Saturday and just unleashed all of his feelings. I felt really bad for him. We just told him to pray and read the Book of Mormon. Anyway... He's had the hiccups for the last 6 days! I don’t even know how that happens... haha but it was pretty funny when we visited him yesterday. He was just hiccuping and hiccuping over and over. He was really stressed when we went by last night but as we talked he calmed down a lot. He said that he loved us and that he's sorry that he gets a little "cranky" sometimes. haha I love that guy. He is prepared to be baptized and said he is excited for this Sunday but he said if his health goes downhill he we would have to postpone it.

Mario's daughter, Gina, is doing AWESOME!! She is so prepared and accepts everything that we teach. She came to the YSA ward yesterday and stayed a little later to go to the English Ward with her mom who she invited to come. She went to the YSA's FHE and institute and a little dance they had this week. She's stoked for her baptism this week.

Since Mario loves art I think I am going to draw him a picture of Christ for his baptism, and I actually might just draw one and give a copy to all of my recent converts here! Speaking of recent converts The Harkriders went to the Temple to do baptisms for the dead for the first time!! The both had the chance to do the work for some of their own relatives! And Sam is going to come up to Utah to visit BYU and stuff in January probably and I told her to visit you guys too. Show her a good time up there in Utah!

Well that’s all I have time for this week but I love you and hope that you all have a cup of Horchata for me this Christmas! (because it tastes like Christmas)...

-Elder Jordan Stewart

Monday, December 3, 2012

Letter 73

December 3, 2012

Feliz Navidad Ya'll!

I hope you all have a great Christmas! It sounds like things are going to be a little different this year... that stinks. Try to have fun though as a family! Remember the true Spirit of Christmas!

I don’t think they’re doing transfers on Christmas Eve. I think they're cutting this transfer by a week so that doesn’t happen. I'll let you know.

I don’t think I'll apply for BYU just yet. I want to bundle up my credits in a degree at UVU first and then I can transfer. That’s what I want to do right now. Let me know if you have any other advice.

The work is going really well down here though!

Yesterday Elder Williams and I had the baptism of Hno. Saul Alvarado! It was amazing! We went over on Thursday just to see where he was at with his Baptismal date which was going to be on the 16th. He had been struggling to receive an answer about Joseph Smith and the Restoration and so we didn’t know if he was going to still feel good about his date. We decided the best thing to do would be to review the interview questions with him to see where he was. When we came to question 2 about Joseph Smith he paused and after about 10-15 seconds of thinking he said, "Yeah, I believe it." WOW we were SO surprised! Elder Williams thought we were going to have to drop him. We finished the interview and the next visit we asked him if he wanted to be baptized that very Sunday (because he works in the oil fields 7 days on and 7 days off so he would have to wait 2 weeks) and he said, "Sure!" haha it was such a miracle to see him be baptized yesterday and even more that his wife can now have an eternal family. She was so excited! I love that man and I'm glad he's on the right path.

Brother Beltran is still in Mexico... they took his Visa away so... he'll be there for a while trying to get it back.

Mario and his daughter Gina are doing really well and are progressing to their baptisms. They both came to church yesterday and Gina said that she was going to the Christmas Devotional too. We found a really awesome fellow-shipper for her who is doing a great job. I love the members here! I bought a large print Triple and Bible from the distribution center so that he could read. His eyes are bad and he lost his prescription glasses fishing so I thought I would give those to him for an early Christmas gift. I'm also going to give him that blue shoulder bag that I came out with so that he can carry them in church cause they're pretty hefty! I wasn’t using it at all and I was going to send it home so I thought, "What the heck? I'll give it to Mario!" He's a really good guy. I don’t know what its showing that I sent... I didn’t send anything.... I bought some stamps… maybe that’s it?

Frank disappeared and we haven’t had contact with him in a while. We're still working on it though.

I love the Christmas Season! Even though it’s hot down here and I'll probably be opening more tamales then presents this year I am so excited for Christmas. I absolutely love being a missionary. This Christmas season it’s so important that we remember the true meaning of Christmas as we celebrate our Savior’s birth. I've been thinking a lot about it lately, especially the importance and anticipation of that one moment. Before the world was, we stood in the Grand Council in Heaven and Christ was chosen to redeem the world. He said "Here I am. Send me." And from that moment on the world was waiting for His coming. Prophets testified of his coming. Sacrifices were made from Adam down through the ages, testifying of that Savior that was to come. Signs were given in the Heavens and angels appeared with glad tidings of "peace on earth goodwill to man". And then after all of the waiting and anticipation... it happened and those signs and testimonies and prophecies were fulfilled. Our Savior was born into the world. I hope we all remember this long anticipated moment this season. It’s my testimony that it happened and that now we are waiting for His second coming. Let us remember and prepare. I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and show true Charity as you remember Savior this year! Love you!!!

-Elder Jordan Stewart