Monday, June 25, 2012

25 June 2012, Culiacan Mexico

Hola Familia,

Well another weeks gone by! Sounds like everything has been heating up at home, and it has been here too but luckily there have been some cloudy days this week and it rained a couple nights. We´ve been working with a lot of the same investigators this week but found some new ones too. Fernando (17 year old kid) needs to talk to his parents about some things before he gets baptized. We have his baptism scheduled for this saturday and we´re going to visit him and his family a few times during this week. Tomorrow we´ve got it planned to help José Ramon get married and his baptism is scheduled for saturday too. Both of them went to church on sunday and José is doing really well! He seems a lot happier and is excited to finally get married (after being with his esposa 25 years or something) and get baptized!

We had a little transmision thing we watched last night in the stake center. It was some church leadership meeting that had been taped somewhere in Mexico and Elder Johnson spoke. It was pretty cool because they talked a lot about our need to show Christlike love unto one another. One of the big problems, especially in Mexico, is keeping the members of the ward active. Elder Johnson talked about how church leaders should always watch over their members and really concern about them. If somebody in the ward/quorum/group is having troubles whether it be family related, emotionally, etc we should be visiting them each week. There was a quote I really liked that said, ¨it´s impossible for a human being to deny an act of true love¨. When the people really see we love them and care about their well-being they´ll almost always, if not always, come back.

I feel like I know the area a lot better here now and have gotten to know the members better. Next saturday we´ll already be hearing transfers again, but I think most likely E. Lopez and I will stay together here in our area. I´m excited for the work that we have to do and just pray that I can live up to it. : )

Thanks for all the love, support, and prayers. Have an awesome week and enjoy your summer time!

Elder Carlson

P.S. Some photos of E. Lopez and our friends. The last pic is with one of E. Lopez´s convert familys in a different area we visited today.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

18 June 2012, Culiacan Mexico

Hola Familia, 

Another hot week has passed by! Things have been pretty good this week and we´ve been staying really busy. Which is definitely good. It was cool because this week we got the chance to find some new people to teach. The majority of them were from references of other members in the ward too. I´m learning more and more about how missionaries should work with the members lately haha. There´s some cool quote by President Gordon B. Hinckley in PMG that talks about that. Everyone who gets involved in missionary work generally comes to the same conclusion that working with the members is the most effective way to find people to teach! 

That guy who went to church last sunday, Jose Ramon, is doing really good. Elder Lopez knew of somebody that could help us with his marriage problem and when he Jose heard that he was very happy. We´re planning putting a date to pass by with a judge to marry  him and his wife sometime this week, so we´re excited for that.. We´re also teaching this one young kid right now named Fernando. He´s 17 and really a cool kid. He likes to play the guitar and was showing us some songs. He already knows the church is true and has talked with a lot of other missionaries over the years, but we think he might finally make the decision to be baptized soon : ).

Sounds like everything has been going really good at home. I hope it´s not as hot there as it is here, but we´re still handling things pretty good haha. Luckily the buses in Culiacan are a lot cooler than the ones in Mazatlan, in both aspects of the word cool! I´m excited to see what happens this week. Thank you all for your kindness, support, and prayers!

Elder Carlson

Monday, June 11, 2012

11 June 2012, Culiacan Mexico

Hola Familia,

¿Que tal? Well this week has been pretty busy. It was definitely a pretty filled week and went well. The seminario thing was awesome! We´d go to the seminario in the morning, leave to work for awhile out in the field, eat lunch, return to the seminario and later on eat dinner there and go him each day. From Tuesday until Friday I was with E. Perez, one of my zone leaders in Mazatlán working out in the field. It was pretty fun and we met some cool people we taught. We got a couple baptismal dates even and we´re hoping to see some more progress with the new people we found. We learned even more about praying specifically and about some of things we should change to have more success as missionaries. One of the most important things is just to remember why we´re out here. To bring people unto Christ!

This sunday was pretty awesome too. We unfortunately didn´t have too many people that came to church (investigators who came) but one of our investigators hadn´t been in awhile. We had challenged him earlier in the week to go and he was really worried about his work, he repairs shoes and didn´t have much business. We taught him about praying specifically and putting our part to serve the Lord and afterwards we always recieve the blessings. He decided to pray asking to have work this week with the condition that he was going to go to church. He showed up to church and I´m excited to go and see him this week to see how things go.

Well, there´s some other news. In the morning we found out that there are some transfers already! My companion, E. Martinez, is going to be sent to Esquinapa (a place a little south of Mazatlán) tomorrow, and I´m going to recieve a different companion named Elder Lopez. It was pretty surprising and I´m hoping everything will go well. There´s some parts of our area that I don´t know super well yet but I know eveything will be fine.

Glad to hear everyone is doing well at home. Thanks for all the support and smiles you give me. Things are getting even hotter here and I don´t know what´ll happen when it hits it´s max haha. Love you all and you´re always in my prayers.

Elder Carlson

Sunday, June 10, 2012

4 June 2012, Culiacan Mexico

Hola Familia,

Well this week has been pretty good for the most part. We have been working with the investigators with we have and we got a new one who is pretty potential. His name is Manuel, and he´s the friend of one of Elder Martinez´s converts, Victor. Victor brought him to church a couple sundays ago so we taught him this week. He´s already making good progress but wasn´t able to  come to church this sunday. We´re going to keep working with the investigators we have but are still working on finding new ones.

This week one of the exciting things is we´re going to have the Seminario (Seminary) training thing again and E Martinez and I are going to go to it. It´s going to be 4 days so I´m sure there will be a lot of information we learn! We´ll leave in the afternoon at some point to go back and teach a little bit, but sounds like we wont really have much time to teach until saturday. We´re going to pick up 4 other elders who are going to stay with us in our house during the week. Our house is pretty big and we have spear matresses right now so it´ll be cool : ).

Besides that I´m feeling a little bit more accustomed to my new area. Still learning how to get places and whatnot but I feel more comfortable with it. There are some differences in the people and how the area looks than in Mazatlán but for the most part it´s the same kind of deal.

We had a cool Zone Meeting this week and I learned some more about the power of prayer and they challenged us to say specific prayers everyday. You first need to have faith, second make a plan of what you´re going to do, third ask the Lord specifically what you want to happen (time, place, person, specific stuff, etc), and fourth complete with your part the next day. We heard some cool stories about some of the experiences elders have had finding people this way. Even asking things like, today we´re going to leave this appointment and look for a lady with a red shirt who´s family is interested in the learning about the gospel and then they found that lady the next day!

I hope I can have some cool experiences like that in my mission. I´m learning a lot and thankful for all the time I have here. Thank you for all your love, prayers, and support. Have an awesome week!

Elder Carlson

P.S. Here´s some pictures of our district at the Zoo from last week!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

28 May 2012, Culiacan Mexico

¡Hola Familia!

Well, this week has gone by really fast and I feel a little more adjusted to my new settings haha. I´ve been having a good time with my new companion getting to know the ward members and the investigators we have. There is a lot of people to get to know especially since we are over 2 wards right now but that makes things a little more fun too. We seem to have some pretty cool investigators. There´s one family in the ward that is really cool, Familia Rojo, and just the daughter is left to get baptized, Jessica. We´re going to see how things go reteaching her the lessons and things because it sounds like she´s pretty much ready but just hasn´t made the decision yet. Her brother is getting ready to go on a mission too so that´s pretty cool too : ). 

We need to start finding new people to teach and we had our district meeting about finding new people this morning. There´s a ton of ways to find people to teach but it still can take a lot of work sometimes! That´s why we always need to have a good attitude and it´s important to work with the ward. When you work well with the ward the missionary work is sooo much easier. It´s funny seeing how the missionary works now being a missionary. A lot of people think all the missionary work in the church is left to the missionaries, but the best way to have success is working together with the remembers. They know the people who are ready to hear the gospel and can give the support and encouragement needed.

Besides all that fun stuff it has been pretty flippin hot here but things are just starting to heat up. It´s not as bad as I thought it would be so far though to be honest.. We were givin permission to go to the Zoo today in Culiacán because Elder Martinez and the district hit their goal for the month. It´s not a very big Zoo but it was fun to be able to do something kind of different on preparation day. We had a good time with that and afterwards ate some shrimp tacos with the Familia Rojo.

Anyways I better get going! Hope everyone is doing well and glad to hear from you all. Thanks for all the support and prayers, you´re all aways in mine! : )

Elder Carlson

P.S. I tried to send some photos but it´s not working : /. So til next week if it didn´t send!