Monday, March 30, 2009

March 30, 2009

Well Hello there!

This week was..... really bad. First off, Elder Herrera had the flu for Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday, so we didn't go out at all. We just stayed in the apartment. Then he finally got better but.... He goes home in June and has no desire whatsoever to do missionary work. It is very hard. All he talks about is going home, and girls, and wanting to leave here. I hate it. It's hard to get him to do anything. We get along very well. I love him. But still, I have so much desire to go out and talk to people but he just wants to sit around. It's also hard because he doesn't speak a whole lot of spanish to me. So I have been doing A LOT of studying on my own.

Yes I do know Elder Quintana, he is a Spanish Elder in Denison, Iowa right now. I will be seeing him on Wednesday at Zone Conference. So why else was this week just bad?.... Well Alister did not pass his baptismal interview. Elder King, the one who conducted the interview asked him a question not on the interview that Alister didn't know. Ha...I think Elder King was expecting him to know everything.... but Alister obviously doesn't yet. I was disappointed. But We are going to work with Alister really hard this week and have him ready for Saturday. We are going to have the baptism and wedding in between conference sessions.

Elisa will be baptized this week also. Not sure which day right now. She is going to probably be leaving for California because her mom is having a surgery done. But she will be baptized this week. And she attended church for the fourth time. She really enjoys it. She is a lot happier since she quit her job. I like it.

Gabriel has a baptismal date for April 25th. Last time we were over there he was drunk. We talked to him for a long time. And he really has the desire to change. So we are going to be working with him extra hard. We are bringing Roberto, a recent convert with us on Thursday to teach Gabriel with us. Roberto went threw the same situation with drinking everyday. It'll be good to have him there with us. Other than that.... Not a whole lot happened this week.

Since receiving Elder Herrera as my companion the work has slowed down a little bit. And I really do hate it. We have so many people that have so much potential but we don't see them as much as we should. So I think I am going to sit down with him this week and just have a talk. Ha and be straight up. I am good at that.But I did receive some good advice from Amber's dad in a letter he sent me. He told me to try and find one thing positive out of each day. That has been hard this week. But it has helped me to realize sometimes we just remember the bad and forget the good. But when I have focused on the good it has helped to realize that no matter how bad the day was, we helped to change the life of someone. And those are the types of things I want to remember.

My spanish is continuing to improve. I can pretty much understand all of my church meetings now and teach all the lessons. That's good! But everyday conversation is hard. People use so many weird words I just don't know. But I am working on it. And using the little book Uncle John gave me everday. It is quickly feeling up with new words.

There is no greater feeling in missionary work than watching someone make that covenant with God and enter the waters of baptism. I have never felt the spirit as strong in my life as when I was there with Oscar. I can't wait to have that opportunity again with Alister and Elisa!

It is so sad to see missionaries not complete their missions. It is definitely very difficult and challenging, but it's not worth it to leave. I have never been tested so hard in my life as I have since I have been out here. But on the other hand I have never felt God's love as strong as this. It's definitely a lot of mixed emotions. But it's changing my life.

Oh yeah.... funny story. So we helped a member clean out her store since she was closing it down. And she bought us pizza. So I was eating pizza and one of the pizza's had mushrooms on it. I am not a huge fan of mushrooms, so I picked them off. Ha! So later that night on the same day we had dinner with la familia Ramirez. Ya want to know what we had? Mushroom soup. So I gladly ate it. I just can't win though. :)Dinner appointments are always interesting since ya never know what to expect.

I love you all very much! I miss you and hope that you are all taking care of yourselves. Since I am not there to keep you in line and all. :)I hope you are all looking forward to conference this week. It should be amazing. Being able to hear talks from God spoken through the mouths of his servants. I have learned that God has given us everything we have. We can't give back anything, except our will. We do that by making correct decisions and striving to develop the attributes of Christ. Continue to better yourselves. I love you Mom. Don't forget about the 1.

Love Always, Elder Moore

Monday, March 23, 2009

March 23, 2009

Hellooooo!Hey there! It's me. Sorry this letter is coming a little later in the day then usual. We played basketball this morning for like 3 hours. I am so sore. I definately don't have what I used to have in me. But I am gaining weight. 150 now. We have been working out pretty hard core. :)So yes, Elder Shumway did get transferred to Grand Island. I am still here. Of course! With Elder Herrera. He was born in Mexico but is from Colorado. I really like him a lot. We get a long very well. He was the zone leader in my zone before transfers. So I knew him already. It's kinda hard being with him though because he goes home in June. So really that is all he talks about. I don't like it. It's hard to focus on the work with him just talking about that. But we are going to have some good success I think.I am going to be in the Spanish Omaha North for a long time. Because Elder Herrera goes home in 2 transfers. So I will at least be here 3. From what I have been told. I will be training the next new missionary that comes here in June. Ha! I have a lot to learn.So this week was a pretty good one.

Alister will be getting married to Erika on Saturday at one. And will be baptized at 2! Woohoo!! That is great news.We pushed back Elisa's baptismal date again. But this time for a good reason. She DID come to church this week again finally! She quit her job so that she could come to church. We will be baptizing her on April 4th. The reason it is going to be April 4th is so that we can baptize her and her mom on the same day! So we will be having 2 baptisms on the 4th.Georginia still has a baptismal date for the 28th and is progressing very well. She lives with members too and comes to church every week. Hopefully all goes well with that.So this Saturday and the next we should have a total of 4 baptisms. Hopefully all goes well. Please pray for them. Thank you! We helped Maria move on Friday. She has her own little apartment now with her daughter. That will be good for her. She was really having a hard time but seems to be doing better. We taught her again this week. And she told us she really felt some very strong impressions. That night at 11:15 we received a text from her that said we have made her think alot about things but really just wants to be sure before she commits to anything. She is going to be baptized. She is golden. Plus her daughters are all members and she has awesome member support from Sister Bailey. So all is going well there. We have an appointment with her Tuesday night. We plan on setting her for baptism then.

Speaking of moving we also helped the Bishop move. We are moving people left and right. This was a service filled weekend! We also found a new investigator.... Sophia. We taught her the first lesson and she was crying by the end. She told us she felt something too. we haven't been able to contact her since though. That's a bummer. But we will keep trying.

This week we had kind of a scary experience. I really need to follow the promptings of the Spirit. Well I do. But this time I didn't. We were walking down the road and a navajo indian guy told us to come in. I didn't feel entirely comfortable but we did anyways.... We got into his house and he started swearing at us. And saying that mormons are the worste people of all. That we killed his people to gain our land. And that we were devil worshippers. And then he swore at us a little more. Ha so I gave him a Book of Mormon, testified of it, and got the flip out of there. Yeah.... Crazy stuff.... There are some really crazy people out there!

My spanish is coming a long a lot better now. Still not great. But everyday it's getting a little better. I have really begun just talking and not thinking about what I say before I say it. My pronunciation is getting better, and my speed. You have to be able to talk fast here. It's nuts how fast some of them talk. And a lot mumble too. That makes it a little more difficult to understand but all is well.

I am the driver in our companionship. Elder Herrera had his driving privileges taken away. So I drive. I was so dang scared the first time! I hadn't driven in almost 4 months. yeah..... But I feel more comfortable now.

What else.........Oh yeah!!! I heard the temple dedication was awesome! From both you and Amber. And you both shared that the spirit was really there. I am so jealous you were all able to be a part of that. That is so cool!I am so sorry to hear about Papa. He is the sweetest guy!! How is he doing? Tell him I love him very much. And to make sure he keeps oxygen in that tank. Or ha.... whatever he has running threw there.

Oh something cool happened yesterday. We were teaching Veronica. And we hadn't seen her for 12 days. It had been awhile. We had to stop teaching her because she moved in with her brother and her brother doesn't like us. So she has our number, and she doesn't have a number so the only way we can get a hold of her is if she calls us. Well at the baptism of her step mom Pamela, we went and translated for her, this was 12 days ago. she said to us.... if this is something good I am going to get baptized. But I am going to continue to study. Well she showed up at church on Sunday! We didn't even invite her. We couldn't! And she was there! I was so happy!

Well Mom, I definately don't have all the solutions to our investigators crazy problems. But I am definately trying to help out. And the Lord plays a big role in it too. He does have all the answers. But sometimes we just aren't listening. He does answer prayers. And we just have to listen for the answer. I have a testimony of that. He is our Father, and he will speak to us. As long as we have faith that we will recieve an answer.I want you to know that through obedience we receive so many blessings! I have seen the blessings that come through obedience! The Lord really does bless us when we do what is right!

It has been a little more difficult with Elder Herrera in all honesty. He is great. But it is very hard to just do everything right with him. I am trying very hard though.I love this gospel. And I love serving the Lord. These 2 years are passing by fast. This is a great experience though. I am learning so much! I am growing and I am seeing the growth of people back home too. It is great!

Love always- - -Elder Moore

Monday, March 16, 2009

March 16, 2009

Well Hello!!!Well this has been an interesting week, full of ups, downs, horizontals, and verticals. Missions are crazy. I can't say it enough. Well this is the last week of the first transfer. Yay! I made it through number one. There is a good chance that I will be getting a new companion. Elder Shumway has been in this area for 5 transfers, he is as good as gone. And the area will be mine, and probably, Elder Keentana, from Mexico. We are playing a guessing game right now. But that is what it is looking like.
Ok before anything I felt like I robbed you all a little bit.... I didn't really share how great of feeling I had after baptizing Oscar.So Oscar as you know was my first baptism. Holiness! It was so amazing, as I said the water was FREEZING but that didn't matter. I felt so much joy in my heart as I baptized him. Watching him change his life. And start new. I became addicted to baptizing. That was such a cool experience for me. I loved it. And I could just feel the spirit so strongly. It was just.... wow. I can't wait till the next and the next and etc. :) But now, there is no greater feeling in the world then being a part of that. Something crazy happened this week.... Well I started understanding spanish better. Ha yeah, nuts. I started teaching more, and speaking more, and understanding more. It doesn't feel like as much of a barrier as it used to be. Everyday it is getting a little better.
Ok so this story happened like 3 weeks ago but I keep forgetting to put it in here. So We were talking to a woman named Pastora. Ha she is crazy out of her mind. First off.... So I thought my spanish was getting better when we went and visited her. And she is a blabber. And she started telling a story about how one day she was on her porch and just lifted up on the ground and started flying. It wasn't a dream, this actually happened. And she said she was up in the clouds flying over Omaha, and then God set her back down on the porch. Mmmm.... I thought I must have understood that wrong. So when we left I asked Elder Shumway..... What did she say? And he told me, and I was like oh! I guess my Spanish isn't that bad after all. So I had heard right. She thought she could fly.
Ok so why did I title this e-mail.... I'm only 19. Well for this reason.
#1- My first baptism, Oscar Mendez. Well they have been married all of 11 days. And now seperated. He called us and told us to get over to his house. We did. His wife had kicked him out of the house, he was depressed, so started drinking again. And yeah.... We are trying to salvage it. And turn him around. So we spent a good amount of time over at there house talking with them. Funny thing though... she kicked him out. We called the Bishop and the Bishop took him to a shelter. Oscar had his Book of Mormon with him and started teaching people there at the shelfter. Oh yeah!!! He brought 2 other people with him to church. The guy is a missionary machine! Funny guy.
#2- Another investigator, named Maria. She is divorced, her husband and 3 kids are Mormons. We are teaching her in a member's house. Sister Bailey. She is really nice! And always has food for us when we come over.Well anyways.... Maria, lost her job, and left her dad's house where she was living because he is a drunk and beats on her. So she called us..... She didn't know what else to do, she didn't have a job or a place to stay and just said, "What should I do?" Well we called Sister Bailey and she stayed 2 nights with her and now a memeber in Sister Bailey's ward is renting her a place for cheap and she got a job at Applebees now. I think that she is going to be baptized. She has a lot of faith in us.
#3- Julio and Elmer, their apartment doesn't have light or gas. They called us..... #4- Veronica, her house doesn't have light, gas, or water. They called us....
Well at least people have a lot of faith in us that we can solve their problems. Haha. It is very hard seeing so many people suffering and not knowing what to do sometimes. It's like, ha everything we do is just winging it sometimes. But I love it! Elisa, once again didn't come to church. She told us she would be there and that she would skip work to be there because she wants to be baptized. We had a date for her for this Friday but she didn't come to church, she went to work, so we are going to have to RESET her yet again. Dang it. She was pretty sad when we told her last week that we had to move her baptism date to the 20th and not the 14th because she missed church. I wonder how she will react tonight when we go and see her. I liked her better unemployed. I am just being selfish now. But before her job we could meet with her whenever, now she is never home. I am glad she has work now.
This week during a lesson, a woman whipped out her breast and started feeding her child. HA! I just about fell out of my chair! Oh my gosh, I can't even write about it without being immature and laughing, so I won't say anything else about that.
Last week it was very foggy! Couldn't see much. This week it is like 65! So we aren't wearing suitcoats. Ah! It is so so nice!!So I have become hispanic. Well not really but I am working on it. I have hot sauce on everything I eat. And tortillas with every meal!!! In the fridge I think I have like 40 tortillas. And I do as the latinos to. I don't use a spatula to flip stuff. Just my hands. It burns sometimes, but they are getting stronger. :)So I have come to realize that spanish people are just too nice! They don't want to say no, so they lie to you instead. I wish they would just say no. Especially when they say thay are going to come to church, so we find them a ride and then they don't.By the way that is another hard thing. Finding rides. No one has cars here because they don't have jobs. And they don't have jobs because they don't have papers. No one does. But they all do have cool and sad stories about how they crossed the border to get here. It's neat stuff. but most of them haven't seen their kids in years or their wives or yeah.... I feel terrible just hearing there horrible stories.It's hard when people need this gospel. But they don't accept it. It's hard knowing the change that it can bring about in their lives and knowing that it WILL help them, but still, they don't accept it. They become content with the lives they live.
I love you all very much family!! I miss you like.... well I dont know. we will just say I miss you. :) The work is amazing!Every member of the church is a missionary and has the responsibility to share this gospel. Remember that. Many are searching for the truth but they know not where to find it. Share it. Because we have it. We know where to find it. This is an amazing work. The healing power it contains is undescrible. I know that this is true. I have given myself to the Lord for it. When we live it, we bring ourselves closer to our Savior. We can feel his love. Live it!I love you all!!!
Love always-Elder Moore

March 9, 2009

Well hello there!!
This was a pretty crazy week!! First off we will start with exciting news, die down to bad news, and finish strong with more exciting stuff....
Well yes we had a baptism! My first one!!! Ah it was awesome! I entered into the waters of baptism with Oscar Mendez. Wow.... that water was freezing! You can have hot water, but Hermano Dixon, only put on the cold for some reason or another. I don't know why. But yeah it was so cold. But I didn't care, and neither did Oscar. The baptism went great. I felt so great too! I can't imagine how Oscar felt. I asked him after, when we were changing out of our wet cold clothes into some dry clothes "Como se siente?" or How do you feel? He said, "Mucho mucho mejor" Much much better. Ah it was quite the experience. He used to be a major drunk, but has really turned his life around and is in the book of Alma, in the Book of Mormon. So he is doing really good.
Well the lows... I am astonished at the grasp Satan has on some missionaries. 2 missionaries in our district. There is 4 of us. The Spanish North, me and Elder Shumway, and the Spanish South, Clawson and Peterson. Well Elders Clawson and Peterson, were kicked out of their area and seperated for breaking rules. Their area had been not doing so well... and I guess we know why now. They were being disobedeint. It's terrible the things that happen when you aren't living right. That was a disappointment to us. We did get 2 new Elders down in the South though. Elder King, and Elder Pecorri. They are cool.
Also, Elisa didn't come to church this Sunday. So her baptism may be being post poned. Actually there weren't a lot of people at church because of the time change. Ha, I think like when church started there were 9 people total there. Yeah our ward has a lot of work to do.
Miguel Angel one of our progressing investigators, was kicked out of his apartment by the owner. Apparently some neighbors told him to turn his music down and he didn't and then the neighbors complained. Well, Miguel Angel doesn't speak english, so he didn't understand. We called him yesterday, he has moved to Dallas. That was a bummer. We really liked him. He has such a sad story too. He lives here and his family is in Mexico. It's terrible.
We do have 3 baptisms set up for March 28th. Alister, Gabriel, and Georginia.
Hopefully things will go through with Veronica as well. She says she doesn't feel like she could be forgiven for some things and yeah.... She is a really amazing person and she enjoys talking with us. She just needs to have that desire to change. It's hard because we can't force them to change. I can't imagine how God must feel watching us go against his will. It must be so frustrating, because I have seen people that need this, but won't change because they don't feel they can. They feel that who they are now is, well... who they are. So I have been praying hard to know what to teach Veronica, since we have gone through the lessons with her. We'll see how it goes...
So crazy story.... We were leaving the apartment on Tuesday, and checked the mail right before we left. Elder Shumway had 3 letters. So he had me read them to him in the car. So I am reading this one to him from his bishop's daughter who is actually a student at SUU right now. Ha! And I get to the end and it says P.S.- My roommate Jamie has a friend in your same mission, his name is Brandon Moore. Do you know him? Haha! We were both like..... HOLY CRAP!!! Jamie actually wrote me but I haven't written her back. Maybe now would be a good time. Haha. But... We got all excited and were like, wow this is a small world. We decided we are both going to write them and be like hey... well we are companions. Ha yeah that was crazy stuff.
So the work in our area is still progressing. We are seeing many miracles still. It's amazing the things that happen when you are living right and striving to be 100%obedient. And then you can definately see the consequences if you are not.
So I am having to get creative in some ways in getting people to read the Book of Mormon. There is a girl named Alejandra, from Columbia, she is 16. She speaks English and Spanish, so that's good for me. Ha. And her mom just spanish. They are less active members. Well we went and visited them and I made up a game to get Alejandra to read her scriptures. I made note cards and write a little summary of a prophet from the Book of Mormon, and she had to figure out who it was. Well there were 9 notecards. And each had either one or 2 chapeters from the Book of Mormon on it. So like 15 chapters total I think. Well guess waht? We went back the next day and she had read all 15 chapters and answered the questions!! It was so cool. She said she enjoyed it. I was proud. Haha.
Yesterday, I prepared shrimp for dinner. And out of the kindness of my heart, ate it. Ha... yeah...
Oh yeah, so I have changed more flat tires here then I have my entire life. Changed the 3rd one yesterday. Can ya believe it?... I can't.
Sounds like the celebration for the temple is going to be huge!! You'll have to tell me all about him. It's a bummer I am gonna miss that. But it's ok. I am doing something awesome! So I am fine with missing it.
Mmm..... What else....I don't kow. I am sure there is much more.
Well the Spanish is still coming along. Still don't feel like a complete missionary yet. It's hard when ya don't understand sometimes. But it's ok.... It's coming. I know it's going to take time. And I am working really hard at it.
This work is great. We are all missionaries, continue to share the gospel people. Because everyone needs it. Many are searching for the truth because they know not where to find it. Well we have it and we can help others find it. Don't be scared to share it either. The worse people can do is say no right? Ha wrong....actually. They can yell at you, curse at you, question everything you believe to be true, spit on you. That is just the white people though. The hispanics don't ususally do that. Hispanic people are very nice. It's great! But yes... share it with everyone. I love you all and miss you! The Lord's work is great! Continue to read and pray. It can bring you so much strength. I love you all!
Love always,
Elder Moore

March 2, 2009

Well Helloooooooooo
Wow! What can I say about this week.....
God really is in this work. Me and my companion saw miracle after miracle and had our prayers answered in so many different ways.
Well best news first. Oscar, will be getting baptized on Saturday! Woohoo!!! My first one! He was living with his girlfriend, and that's a problem, you can't get baptized when that happens. So one day he called and said, the church is true, we are getting married on Monday, today. The bishop is going to marry them and we are going to have a little party. So I am going to a wedding today. Ha! But yup, his baptism is on Saturday. We are glad to see that he decided to get married.
Ok next... We have a baptism date with Elisa, our other investigator on March 14! We went over there to set her for a date. She opened the door and said she was busy, but felt ready to be baptized and asked us to come back tomrrow to set a date. We did and felt by the 14th we would have her ready! She has come to church the last 2 weeks, including yesterday, she was very very sick. But came anyways. I am very excited for her!
This week we will most likely have 4 more baptismal dates set with Miguelangel, Julio, Veronica, and Georgina. We have totall turned the Spanish north upside down! Yesterday between Me and Elder Shumway in the North, and Elder Clawson and Petersen in the south we had 17 investigators at church. (We are all in the same ward, just 2 different areas). Miguelangel and Julio came to church again! That was a miracle in and of itself because, they live kind of far and Hermano Barrera who said he would take them was sick. So we called a recent convert, gave them the info and hoped they would go find them and bring them to church. You have no idea the joy that filled me when they walked into church! Ah it was great.
We talked with them about baptism too. They said they love going to church and wanted to read a little more from the Book of Mormon before they committed. Well we are seeing them again Wednesday and we think by then they will be ready. They are awesome! And the ward members are all really nice to investigators, because everyone in the ward is a new convert. ha! It's great.
Veronica, she just got here about 10 days from Mexico. She has a 4 year old daughter who is paralyzed from the middle of her stomach down and has mental problems. It's sad, but that little girl is so cute. Veronica said she felt like she had no meaning in her life, and then she had that girl, and now everything she does is for her. She loves her daughter so much and has found purpose in her life. She said she prayed to God and told him that if he could help her get the papers to leave Mexico and come here and find a doctor here for her girl she would do everything she could to find the truth.
Well..... She is now here. Hermano Dixon, the ward mission leader is a doctor. So we hooked her up with him. Now her daughter has a doctor, and he is going to help her for free and go through the therapy with her. And we found her the second day she got here. It's amazing how everything fell into place with her. God really did help her and then sent us.
And Georginia is best friends with 2 recent converts in our ward and recently moved in with them. We talked to her last night about Baptism and she wants it. We are going to give her a date this week. She is already prepared. Ha it's great! So this week has been amazing. But I am not done yet...
We got a call from a woman tamed Tammy Bailey, who said her friend Maria is in desperate need of the gospel. Tammy and her family is like a Utah family, ha! Pictures of the Salt Lake Temple up in her house, married a returned missionary, just a nice mormon home. Ha the first one I have been in since being here.
Well we found out from Tammy that her friend Maria is divorced, her husband is mormon and so are her 3 daughters. She moved in with her dad and he abuses her and drinks. We found out she tried to commit suicide. So we taught her in the home of Tammy, and wow.... Probably the most powerful lesson I have had yet. We taught the Atonement, and her purpose here and how she is loved by God and she is his daughter. And as we taught she just began to cry. It was....incredible, and Tammy doesn't speak Spanish but she was crying, and you could just tell something powerful was there. We went with the intentions of teaching the first lesson, but we didn't, we were directed in a different direction. Which was definately for the best. She didn't move after the lesson. She just sat there. Just overwhelmed with emotion I think. We will be teaching Maria again this Wednesday.
We took a road trip out to Wahoo Nebraska! That was awesome! I finally saw the "real" Nebraska. I have been in the city my whole mission. But on our road trip we saw so much open farm land!!! I was so amused by it! We were so excited! ha it was funny how amused we were at pure nothingness. Well we got out to Wahoo and found the Lopez family. What an amazing family. A husband a wife and their 1 year old daughter. It was her birthday so we had cake with them. :)
But wow they knew it was true. They said they would come to church even though it was an hour away. But we had a huge snow storm on Saturday, so they weren't able to make it. But they did invite us back so we are going to road trip it again on Wednesday. They are cool!
Well that was our crazy week! And this week is going to be equally as awesome! Definately a week full of miracles.
So it seemed like we had problems the first few weeks with people not being married.
Well now we are having problems with people going to jail. Ha.... Yeah. Oscar, could be going for getting into an accident on a suspended license. He didn't know it was suspended. But a member of the 70 gave us permission to baptize him.
Allister, the COOLEST investigator ever! By the way he came to church with his less active girlfriend, and said I want to be a member, what do I have to do. So that was cool, that happened last Sunday. He is so so funny! Like he doesn't have a care in the world and he could be going to jail for driving 3 different times on a suspended license. If he doesn't, he is getting baptized. And then Juan, another investigator, goes to jail today, for beating up his sister on Saturday night. So yeah.... It's just crazy!
The only person I speak English to is Elder Shumway. And we mostly try and speak Spanish together, so it's like I am in a totally different country. My spanish is coming along. Elder Shumway told me it takes time, which it totally does! But I am getting more. What I am trying to do now is stop translating in my head and just knowing that when someone says like.... Tengo, it means I have. Just getting rid of english and making spanish my first language. It's hard but it's starting to work. Just ya know when I look at a ball it's not a ball it's a pelota. So yeah... my english is beginning to suffer, but that's a good thing! Slowly but surely it's getting better every day.

I love you all very very much!! Stay safe!!
Love Always,
Elder Moore

February 23, 2009

Well Hello Hello Hello. This is Elder Moore here..... ha! Obviously! But ok..... The low down on this previous week.
Well we had 5 investigators at church!! Awesome!! This week it looks like we are going to be commiting some people to baptism. Let's see who we got....
Well We took Elisa to the Visitors Center and we watched Joseph Smith: The Profet of the Restoration with her, in Spanish of course. Ah that was awesome!! Then we went through the museum. That is an awesome tool that we have here! And the temple is just right across the street. It is in such a perfect spot. I like it a lot! And she came to church as well! So on Tuesday we will be committing her to baptism. She already said she would but just didn't feel ready to pick a date. So we are going to help her out and get her a date. She is coming along great!
Well next we have the three guys we taught a while back. We had Michealangel and Julio at church. No Miguel. He had to work, but he is the one that is most interested. Which was a bummer. But really Julio and Michealangel just took a big leap!! They said we can come back on Wednesday! So we are going to commit them as well. Hope all goes good there! They are all way cool! But the terrible thing was, Hermano Martinez, the guy that taught Priesthood, it was about change. He looked at them the whole time! Me, Elder Shumway, and Elder Petersen were all feeling a little uncomfortable. Hermano Martinez is a recent convert too. He wants to go out with the missionaries, but when we take him out it is like taking 2 steps backawards when we teach. Yeah kind of hard to explain.
HA! We found a new guy, his name is Carlos. This guy is awesome, and crazy! The first time we went and saw him (he was a referral from his son) We were there for like 1 hour and 45 minutes! And we probably squoze in like 15 words. This guy likes to talk!! Holy man. He is way smart too with things of the church and the bible. He is Catholic but said he doesn't believe in some of the Catholic things. And what he does believe is what we believe.
So yesterday we went back to see him. This time it was only an hour and a half. we were determined to get in the first lesson. So we began talking and immediately Carlos began on his tangents again. Haha! So eventually he said something that related perfectly to the Joseph Smith story, ah man I jumped on that faster then a fat kid on the last slice of cake! I spoke as fast as I knew how to in Spanish and loud to so that he couldn't start rambling on again. And finally after an hour of being there, got in the Joseph Smith story. And here is the incredible thing, he was silent, during the story. It was great! We talked a little more. Me and my companion both felt the urge to invite him to be baptized, but it was "Carlos Talk Time" again. But this week we are going to. He has like 12 people living in his house. If we get Carlos to get baptized, there is no doubt in my mind the rest of his house will follow.
So yesterday there were 2 car accidents with investigators. :( It was terrible. Paz, who is rapidly progressing. She has been being taught for a while now, but we are finally getting to her. Her boyfriend is Jose, less active, he wants to get married. We showed them the Together Forever video. She is warming up to the idea of marriage and baptism. It's great! She was in a car accident on the way to church. Air Bags and everything. We went and visited her. She is doing just fine. the biggest problem we have here are people living together and not getting married. So we are trying to work on that with a few different people.
Her 20 year old son, Juan was just commited to baptism by the singles ward sisters! WOOHOO!!! Hopefully that will do something to Paz.
Also La Familia Ramirez, was in a car accident. Rear ended on the way to church. They had one of our investigators in the car. The investigator is their friend. Georgina. Dang....
So me and Elder Shumway are taking a road trip this week out to WAHOO NEBRASKA!! Yeah interesting huh. But that is the name of the place. She is about an hour and 15 minutes away from us. But she wants us to come see her. So we are going. WAHOO! That should be fun. So we are going to go see our 3 guys then as well and hopefully get them with a date.
Who else..... Oh another guy named Ballister, Ha wierd.... well his wife is a member, he showed up at church and was like, I want to be a member. So we are going to start with him this week as well.
Wow this email is long. A lot happens.
So this week is going to be busy! Also a woman has a hispanic friend whose children are members, her ex husband is a member, but she isn't, and she is going through a tough time in her life right now, so we will be teaching her on Thursday. Things are looking really good for us right now! Things are starting to happen!
> I definately like the Hispanic people. They are all really really nice! Every house we go in we get a drink or a tamale. I don't know how many more tamale's I can down though. I can only take so many in one week.
Funny weird stuff happens all the time! Like this story...
This women believes Jesus and God are one person. Ok so in the bible, there is a part, where Stephen is being stoned and he looks up and sees the Glory of God and Jesus standing on His right hand. Right? Right! She reads the bible. She believes it all. But just interprets it different. So that story had just been shared with her and she stands up and says this. " No this is what it meant." She stands on her own right hand, yes puts her right hand underneath her foot. "Jesus was standing on his own right hand."
Oh wow. WHO BELIEVES THAT!!!??? Ha yeah, that was entertaining. Whatever.... I don't know why Jesus would be standing on his own right hand. Maybe he had gum on his foot, I don't know. There are some funny people here. :)
>So The mission goal is to have the book of Mormon read in 6 weeks, and to highlight anytime it talks about Faith, Repentence, Baptism, the Holy Ghost, and Enduring to the end. That goal was extended on Wednesday. I am on page 100 already. Ha, I think I am going to make it. ;)

Love always
Elder Moore

February 17, 2009

Sorry I was not able to write home yesterday, Monday, my p-day, because it was Presidents Day, so the library was closed. So here I am today.....
Yes, I got my bike. It is in my room. My companions name is Elder Shumway, from Blanding Utah.
Ok so events from this week... wow so many. Everyday something totally interesting or random, or just out of the ordinary happens.
A mission definately is crazy with so many unexpected things happening.
So we were given a referal by the sister missionaries for 3 hispanic guys living together.... This was really cool. We taught them the first lesson. It was pretty powerful, and all of them seemed very interested. We told them about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon. And at the end of our teaching we asked Miguel, one of the 3 guys, to pray. You could tell he had never done it before out loud in front of people. So Miguel stood up, put his hands in his pockets, and began to pray. Yeah...! It was amazing, he even had to pause a few times because he was feeling that our message was true, and he offered an amazing prayer! We gave them each a Libro de Mormon, and before we could leave they were all reading it. We are probably going to go see them again tonight.
So me and Elder Shumway were doing our thing. Walking down the street trying to find people and we came across three guys probably 20 years old. One of them had something in his jacket he was hiding.... Ha! We did our Hola somos misionarios de la iglesia... dealio... and here is how the converstaion translated... He said to us " Look guys, we just did a run. We got a kilo of marijuana here, we are packing heat. So we got to get out of here." Ha oh man that was hilarious! So of course that is where the conversation ended and we went our seperate ways.
Next story, we got a referal for a family. There is 3 in the family, and we went over to teach them the first lesson. Well we entered into their house and ha, there were pictures of girls on the wall, huge posters, yeah you can fill in the rest. The family sat under the posters and we faced them. It was a lot of looking at the floor, our scriptures, and their eyes. Nothing more. But they do seem to be progressing which is good. So hey, who knows maybe we will get them to take them down one of these visits.
So Friday there was a horrible snow storm! The cars were grounded so we were out walking in the blizzard. Yeah.... that was crazy. There were many accidents. And people couldn't get up the hills. So me and Elder Shumway, ran down to the bottom of the hill, and one by one, pushed 6 cars up this hill. That was a pretty cool experience, serving people who had no idea who we were. And that continued through out the day, pushing cars. We propably pushed about ha 10-12 cars that day.
So last night, we had dinner with the bishop. Wow.... He is such an amazing guy. Obispo Maranda. Every member in our ward is struggling. Mostly financially. Everyone is here illegaly. He said last year they only received 450 dollars in fast offerings. And that is the money they give to the memebers in need. He said that money was gone the first Sunday of the year. He is having a hard time financially, but he isn't even the one we are worried about, he seemed to be doing alright for himself. But the faith of him and his wife is amazing. They don't go running to the church like every other family does. They try and work things out between them and the Lord.
It's hard seeing all these people struggle. Every person we teach has an issue with something. And they tell all their problems to us, 19 year old boys. It's hard to be able to help them or to know what to do.
But last night after dinner with the bishop we went out to try and find some people to teach. It was rough, no one, and I mean no one would let us in. So we got down to 8:30, our last resort, Benito, a referal. This is cool....
So we talked to him on his porch for about 10 minutes, then he finally let us in. He had been being taught by the Jehova's Witnesses. Which by the way are EVERYWHERE! But he told them he disagreed with them and didn't want to be taught by them anymore. So we taught him, we were there for like 50 minutes, teaching and discussing, and resolving concerns. He kinda told us not to come back, but he didn't mean it. That was obvious. He was feeling the spirit. So we are going to return. :)
So I am eating some funky stuff, that there is no way I would eat back home. Like...... Cow tounge, chicken feet, Chicharon (porkskin, that was chewy) and cheesecake. But ya eat it because you have too. :)
So a new stake presidency huh? That is so awesome! Sounds like we got a great one!
Hope you enjoyed your valentines day. :)
So you can send letters to the apartment, but please send packages to the office. I recieved one, not sure who it is from, but I will find out tomorrow because.... UPS came to drop it off but yeah.... We are rarely at home, so they left a note. I am having them deliver it to the office. So please send any package there. Thank you! :)
Well I love you all very much, very very much! Missions are totally crazy, but totally awesome. By companion is awesome. We get a long very well. But he is a terrible driver. Ran 1 red light and 3 stop signs last week alone. Ha! Yeah..... Well wish us luck. We got a lot of potential investigators that are looking good for baptism. But ya never know...
The spanish is coming.... it's very difficult. But I am learning moore every day! I love you all!
Love always Elder Moore

February 9, 2009

Hello to all!...
Well I have arrived in Nebraska! Finally. It has been a crazy first week. We talked to a guy right off the plane and gave him a pass along card. That was neat! Then we saw President and Sister Newman. Wow they are so great and loving. I really like them a lot! Elder Marchant and Barlow picked us up. Yes Elder Marchant is the son of that lady you have been talking to mom. He said his mom told him to have an eye out for me too. So we talked for a bit. He is so awesome!
The next day we took a tour of the Trail Center and went to the Winters Quarter temple. Wow it is tiny! But way cool. I like it!
After that I went tracting with Elder Bjorn. English speaking thank goodness. It was cool! The first door we knocked on we got in and taught a lesson. After that ..... nothing! White people are mean. They have no interest in you. But it was nice that night and the night before to get a home cooked meal. I like it!!!
So Thursday morning at 6:30 I met my trainer and first companion... Elder Shumway. He has been out here in Nebraska since August. He started out with 2 native spanish speakers so he learned a lot and now he is helping me to learn. I don't know what they taught me in the MTC, but it definately wasn't Spanish. It is a good thing they taught me how to pray though. Since I say nothing when we talk to investigators they always ask me to pray. So I am saying a lot of those. And oh yeah... speaking of praying. Right before sacrament meeting started the 1st counselor walked up and asked me to give the prayer... go figure. So I did give the opening prayer in our ward.
The ward is very small. Each person could have their own bench if they wanted too. Not each family.... each person. But they are helping me out a lot with the Spanish. But geez I feel like such an idiot when it comes to spanish. They speak so fast and I just can't keep up or figure it all out yet. But I am working on it. I am told that ha in like 3- 4 months I will be able to understand it all and pretty much be able to say whatever I want. So I will just have to be patient.
I have been told that I am being prepared to take over the Omaha North area. It is 10,000 square miles. That is where I am now. Omaha North. The biggest area in the mission. It is huge! So once I get going that area is mine apparently, and I will be training. Yikes....! That is just what I have been told though so who knows if it is true.
In all honesty it has been kind of a discouraging first week. I got really discouraged the first 2 days and spent a lot of time praying. It is so hard not being able to understand and now really being away from home. It is NUTS!!! This is nothing like Utah.
Yes my apartment is right outside of downtown. I won't go into to much detail on our area because.... in all honesty I don't want to scare ya ;) But it is the ghetto. It is definately the ghetto. We are very fortunate to live in Utah and in the neghborhood we do. It is a great place to raise a family!
So in my area everyone lives in tiny apartments and little houses. The people are very poor but very nice.... for the most part. There are a lot of barachos (drunks) though. Yesterday.... ah man!!! We were about to get into our car and and an obviously drunk man walked up to us and said habla espanol? (you speak apanish?) Si I said, then he started saying ayudame ayudame yo necessito dinero, no tengo dinero, ayudame. Help me help me I need money, I don't have money. Yeah.... Elder Shumway was laughing at me because he had his hands on my back just like crying, and I was like Lo Siento, no tengo dinero. I am sorry, I don't have money. Which is very true by the way. We only get like 145 dollars a month. So obviously I can't give any away.
But yeah it was pretty scary stuff. We got in the car and drove off. Just left him sitting there. Yup...
Oh and we got a flat tire this morning on our car. That sucked. It has been pouring rain today and we had to change it. We are rolling with a spare now... so we fit right in with half the population in our area. But we are getting it fixed today.
We did our grocery shopping at Avanza. It is a mexican store. That was cool. Like all the workers are bilingual. They would start to talk to you in English and then ha we would respond in spanish and they would be like whoa!! White boys know Spanish. It's funny. It surprises a lot of people. Elder Shumway is really good at Spanish! He is helping me out. But man.... The people just speak so fast! It's nuts. But soon I will be able to follow along with it.
Mmm.... what else..... Well our apartment is a little place, it has a small kitchen, a sitting room with a couch our beds and our pamphlets and Books of Mormon, then we have a room that has 2 broken lazy boy recliners held together by duct tape, a closet and a bathroom.
So yeah... that's our place. Sweet eh? When we get fed.... we get fed really good. I have had some good meals since being here. The mexicans really know how to cook mexican food. Mmm Go figure.
We had dinner last night with La Familia Valensuela. They came here from Van Nuys California. My birth place! Cool eh? They flipped out when I told them I was born there. They are recent converts of 2 and 4 months. Their goal for this year is to be sealed in the temple together. They speak both spanish and english so they help me out a lot too. They are really cool!
Wow this email is long.... i hope you don't mind!! So mom.... if you want to forward this to the Pillings, and my friends at Wasatch Running, and Eric Olsen, that would be sweet. If you wanna get there e-mails or smething that would be great.
So we keep very busy... Going from house to house and place to place. There are so many hispanic people here it is crazy!!! There are 120 missionaries in the mission and 7 speak Spanish. So we are constantly getting referrals and talking with people. EVERYONE actually. We get stood up a lot too. Lots of appointments fall through and yeah... it's missionary work.
Overall the first week had it's highs and lows. I really like my mission. But wow it is so much different then what I have become accustomed to in Utah. We really are so lucky and fortunate to live where we live! I would never ever raise my family where I am at. It's so dangerous and scary and just dark. Don't get me wrong I love it I really do. I just wouldn't though.... But I guess that is what you would expect living right outside of downtown.
Welp... Don't know what more to say... But that I can't wait to be able to really speak Spanish so I can talk more. I have helped teach lessons and prayed and done testimonies, things like that. But still, I don't feel very useful. But soon :) I know it will come eventually. I have felt like I have improved this week. But have SO much more to do. I am constantly studying now because I really really need it!
Anyways.... umm send all my letters to the office and they will forward them to me. They do it that way because we are moving and changing places, so they just have you send them there and they make sure they get to us. Yes mom thank you I did get my bike. It's pretty gnarly. Haven't put it together yet. May not need to actually.... I don't know...
Our areas as Spanish speakers are just so ginormous!!! But maybe when we get into the spring and summer and we need to find more people to teach we will hop on bikes. Sweet!!!
We have 3 new investigators we are going to go teach on Tuesday. A referral from the sister missionaries. They propably let them in because they were sisters. But they don't speak like an English. It looks promising. Hopefully!!! Well anways.....
That's it for this e-mail. Hope all is well!! I love you all very much. If you have any questions just let me know and I will answer them.
I love you all! Take care!
Elder Moore

Yeah this e-mail is long.....

Elder Moore's Emails

I am thinking I will try posting Elder Moore's emails on here each Monday. I will begin from the beginning, so if you have already received them in another format, just look for the most recent one to keep up to date. He is having a great mission and is working hard.