Friday, June 28, 2013

6-24-13 - DJ

Hola Everyone!

Well, not much to say this week. We are working hard and should hopefully have some baptisms in the upcoming week. We had 2 set for yesterday, but one didn´t come to church and the other had her uncle die Saturday morning(so she was out of town and didn´t make it to church either).  We are hoping that we can reschedule their baptisms for next Sunday. I guess we´ll find out.

In other news, My mission (Like many others that I hear about) is changing it´s borders. Specifically, The Mexico City NW Mission is losing 3 stakes to the East Mission and we are gaining 2 from the North Mission. In actuality we are shrinking since those 2 stakes aren´t as big as the 3 we are losing. I´m staying in the mission. What´s sad is that my last area(Martin Carrera) is in one of the stakes that is going East. So I probably won´t be going there again(at least not without permission from the mission president)

Speaking of the Mission President, today is his change. President Tervort officially ends his 3 years as Mission President today and we get a new one. I don´t know his name, but I´m assuming I´ll learn it soon.

That about sums up my week. Nos Vemos!

-Elder D Hill
PS: As a side note we discovered we had a pet and had to get rid of it.  He was about half as long as my finger.

6-24-13 - Jordon

Alright, opposite to last week, I have lots of news this week.
Transfers. Elder Spaulding and I went to tansfers wearing matching ties. Remind you of anything?
I did leave Tempe Zone. Elder Spaulding left as well. He went to Yuma to be district leader there. As for me, I now reside in the.............(drum roll).............. San Tan Zone. And so, that means that I will now be in the Arizona Gilbert Mission. The split officially occurs on the first of July. President Howes goes home then as well, and my new mission president will be President Nattress.
My new companion is Elder Macfarlane. Remember him? He was Elder Harder's companion while I was with Elder Niederhauser. Maybe a picture with help.
Also, apparently this transfer will only be a three week transfer. I don't know why. But, as part of that, I believe that they will be shortening my mission by three weeks; in addition to the week we lost from the 5 week transfer we had. So new expected departure date: September 2, 2014. I'll keep you posted.
My new mailing address is:
195 W. Brangus Way
San Tan Valley, AZ 85143
I'm not sure where the new mission office will be. I hope they tell us soon.
The new area is, well, not so great. We currently only have one person really progressing from a pool of about, I think, 7 investigators. This is going to be a challenge, I can tell. But, the Lord sent me here for a reason, and I'm going to find that out, and do what I'm here to do. 
As for the area itself, it's HUGE!  We share the ward with a companionship of sisters, so the ward boundaries are shared between the two companionships. That's a plus. It's the Queen Creek Spanish ward if you'd like to look it up. But, even with the boundaries cut in half, my area is super big. Bigger than my area in Gilbert was, I think.
There is a noticible difference between this area and the other areas I've had. There are times when I I can look to either side of the road and see open landscape..
 I had the opportunity to ride on a dirt road the other day. It was fun.
A few interesting pictures.
I fixed the 2 videos on Terra (remote Hard Drive here in the house), and added a new one featuring a paper craft that DJ sent me last week. It's quite cool.
 Here's some [other] pictures.
The "Super Nintendo" Vehicle

Tempe companions - hiking the mountains
Well, That's it for today. Next week I will officially be in the new mission. Also, I realized something--In two days we will have been on the mission for 9 months. It's just speeding along. Pretty soon, I'll be back in your presence, once again. Until next week.
Con Amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-
6-17-13 - Jordon

Well, No real updates in the work this week. We're still trying to find, teach, and invite. Although, the Tempe Stake has had a bit of a push for member missionary work recently. Also, on June 23, there is going to be a brodcast open to the public (I assume this was for everyone, not just for Tempe Mission) entitled "The Work of Salvation". This too will have a large focus on missionary work. I hope you all get to see it. It starts at 5:00 pm (arizona time).
As for our investigators, we're trying to help them as best we can, but some of them just don't want the help/won't admit they need it. I've been improving on the amout I testify, but they just arn't willing to give up family traditions sometimes. We'll keep trying. The younger generation seems to be a bit more receptive.
It is sad that Grandpa passed away this past week, and being the first "close" family death I've experienced, I realized something. As I contemplated on it, and relayed the info in my letter to Ashley last week, I realized that I wasn't depressed about it that much. I contribute this partially to my "lack of self attention", which I believe I mentioned last week, but primarily to my knowledge of the Gospel. I know we'll see him again in the next life. Rest well, Grandpa.
So, Transfers are this Wednesday, and my most prominent prediction (more just a fun teese) came true. I believe I've stated before that thus far all of my companions had gone on to become leadership? Well, it's happened again. Elder Spaulding is becoming a district leader this transfer. In addition, we are both leaving the area. This transfer determines who's in which mission. So, next time I write you I may not be in the Arizona Tempe Mission any more. More news to come on this next time.
Recently, this transfer, I took up a hobby of photograghing interesting license plates.  Well, yesterday we were driving along and we saw a rather interesting one. It said "ALM4373". At a glance it's not so impressive, but in "text talk" '4' can mean 'A'. So, Elder Spaulding pointed out that it said Alma 37:3. I tryed to get a good picture, but my camera doesn't work so well without light.
Anyway, keeping in mind that this is on a license plate, here's what the verse says:
3 And these plates of brass, which contain these engravings, which have the records of the holy scriptures upon them, which have the genealogy of our forefathers, even from the beginning—
Plates with engravings containing records of holy scriptures? License plate with a scripture verse? Haha! We died laughing when we looked this up.
Medicine -- It seems like its working. I've been taking 30mg each morning. I have about a weeks worth left. I'll go in for a refill on the prescription next week.
Last week after Emails I had a stroke of boredom/curiosity. the result of this is found in pictures.  Enjoy the battle. (and yes, I would like another paper craft, please. )

That's it for this week, there were a few other things I would have liked to put in here, but that's all that time will allow. They're not that important and shall be included in following emails.
Fare thee well.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill.
6-17-13 - DJ

Hola Everyone!

Well this week has been interesting. First, to anyone that heard that Mexico was hit by a big earthquake, its true. I´m fine and as I understand it, it was worse just south of our mission than here. I really don´t know. it happened about 12:20 at night, so I was sound asleep through the whole thing, but everyone was talking about it and were shook up (no pun intended) about it and worried if their relatives were safe.  As for here. all the buildings seem to still be standing and no major damage was done (at least in our area, no idea about elsewhere).
Second, we were lined up to have more investigators in church than ever, as well as several less actives that said they would come... and we got nobody. The people we were going to pick up had a family emergency come up first thing in the morning, and none of our other investigators or less actives made it either. It really made me want to cry, then we had a less active come late so that made me feel a little bit better.
Third. we are going to work harder than ever this week to have a great week and a great Sunday. We have a new investigator, Alejandra, who wants to know what God wants her to do and what the truth is. We started by sharing the Joseph Smith story with her and she loved it. She wants to change her life for the better and the Gospel can do just that. So cool.
Fourth, the attached picture is a picture we took at a mission conference we had last week. this is every missionary in the mission so have fin finding me :) 

That´s about it. Nos Vemos!

-Elder D Hill
6/10/13 - DJ
Hola Everybody!

So this week was good. We spent a lot of time this week teaching investigators and we had a baptism! The sister of one of our member families (The sister from the miracle I mentioned last week) got baptized last night! It´s so awesome how the lord helps the missionaries and blesses the work if the missionaries are willing to work hard.

Also I decided it was time to break out the second pair of shoes. the first pair was starting to look a little rough.  The pictures are of my right shoe from each of my pairs. (as a side note, the older shoe was clean and polished less than 24 hours before the picture, and the shoes are Identical.) I guess I´ve been doing a little walking.

That´s about it for the news here in Mexico, ¡Adios!
-Elder D Hill
6/10/13 - Jordon

Well, this week has been a bit of an adventure. This week we had two exchanges; one on Wednesday with Elders Pontius and Choate (District Leader and his companion), the other on Friday with Elders Pérez and Gathro (Assistants to the President). These exchanges have helped me to see a couple things that needed improvement within myself. Primarily, my ability to teach and testify. In all that we do as missionaries, it's important to remember to testify at every opportunity. I often forget this step, or at least, to use the words "I know..." or "I testify...". I'm getting better though.
Elder Spaulding and I are starting to see a little progression in our area. Yay! We've found a few new people to teach (people who appear a bit more interested), and they're keeping commitments, for the most part. Our attendance at church appears to be rising, as well. We've realized that a major part of our mistake was that we weren't extending a baptismal invite on the first lesson (or on any of the lessons, actually). Once we realized this, we've been making sure to extend dates to all of our investigators. Any who don't show promise with this are being left for another time. Those who accept, or who aren't sure we continue to help out. This really helps to sort out the prepared from the not. We're also making some progress with working with the ward members. We found out that the majority of our Ward Council don't really know what their function is in the council. We (Missionaries and Bishop) are making steps to help them in this. We should hopefully start seeing some baptisms soon.
Notes about my discussion with "Doctor" Elder Spaulding
I'm doing fine. We had talked about a large variety of subjects, including: What makes me happy, the reasoning behind my obedience, and a bit about goal setting, and more.
In our discussion, I came to a realization that I don't really keep an up to date "report" about how I'm feeling. I've explained in the past that I tend to hide my feelings, including from myself. I think this comes from this "of date report". I realize that there are things that aren't the most pleasent that I need to do everyday, but I'm pressing forward. My thoughts aren't what's making me unhappy really. I think I might have just been in an unpleasent mood that morning. I'm not really fond of exchanges, and I just got off one with the Zone Leaders the night before.
It's sad to hear about Grandpa.  But, I know he's on his way to a better place, and we'll see him again one day.
Mudkip's done (Jordon has been doing paper crafts to help with the stress)
 It was a tad difficult without having instructions about how to put it together, but I got it done. It was a little front heavy, so I taped a couple paperclips inside the back leg. Now it stands fine.
Guess what came in the mail on Tuesday? The TV-B-Gone from Becky.  It works, too. I bring it with me to the gym each morning to be able to turn off the TVs. This past week I've been in the process of making a protective case for it.  Now I'm mking a Cap to cover the LEDs for storage. I've been tempted to use it to cause a bit of mischief (at Wal-mart today for example), but I've been keeping out of trouble. Look out world, here I come!  (Becky thinking: What have I done?)
File Zilla is working now, so I've put some of the videos I've taken onto Terra. I don't know anything more about where they are stored. You'll have to go looking for them.
That's all for this week.
Con Amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-
Sorry for not having updated for a long time.  It's been a bit crazy at our house.  Several events have held me up.  So here are the updates.


Monday, June 3, 2013

6-3-13 DJ

Hola Everyone!

Well, this week was tough. For most of the week we had appointments fall through and the baptisms we were hoping for this last week didn´t happen either. The family we started teaching needs to get married and none of our investigators were about to make it to church yesterday. :.( 
We prayed for a miracle on Saturday night. On Sunday, one of the members brought their cousin with them. We met with her after church, and she wants to get baptized! Talk about a miracle and an answer to a prayer if there ever was one! Her big concern was she wanted to wait until she wouldn´t make errors before being baptized. We assured her that we would help her prepare and that the gospel is for imperfect people like all of us are. The Spirit was so strong she started crying from how strong it was. I Love Miracles. And we just had to keep at it and never doubt our faith.

That´s about it for this week. Nos Vemos!
-Elder DJ Hill
6-3-13 Jordon

Well, this week, I feel that we've made some progress. We're trying to use the pamphlets to find and teach, and are encountering some differences than before. Last night, for example, we taught a lesson to a lady named María. We taught the Message of the Restoration, and I think it went well. We did our best to keep things simple, and explained more for points when she was confused. We even managed to involve her 7 year old daughter by talking about the pictures and inviting her to read. (She doesn't read very fast yet and had a bit of trouble with some of the bigger words, but I think she was having fun. :) As we continued to teach the daughter would continure reading on her own. Toward the end of the lesson, we invited María to be baptized, and she said something interesting. The first response she had was "I'm not prepared." (translated from Spanish) It wasn't "I don't want to." It wasn't "I can't." It was ""I'm not prepared." I think we may have some potential here.

In more personal news: Saturday, Elder Spaulding and I stayed in practically until 4 pm because we were delving deep into my psyche. This was spawned by certain events that happened the day before. The opening question was "Elder Hill, are you happy in the mission?" My response, in essence, was in the negative. We pretty much went through a whole slew of topics, including: what brings me happiness, why I'm here on a mission, what is the reasoning for my obedience, and other things to help me to do the work. It's alright, you don't need to worry too much about me now. I'm doing alright.  I realize that this perhaps might have been a misuse of time, but I feel it was needed.
The meds appear to be working fine. I've settled in at 30 mg. in the morning. I may get distracted from time to time, but I usually can pull myself back to fucus in a few moments.  Initially, the doctor did give me the XR, but the insurance company didn't want to pay for that.
My campanion is great. He's funny, smart, and apparently makes a decent psychologist. He always has a joke to tell or has a constant smile on his face. We get along well, and our teaching is in unity.
As for the camera: no, I don't need a new SD Card - yet. You're right in the fact that I'm not sending home all the pictures I take, but, de verdad [actually], my camera still reads that I have 9999 pictures left. A 16 gig sd card will do that.
Aside from all this, there isn't really much to tell. Recently, (like 3 or 4 weeks ago) I started memorizing the Family Proclamation. I have it down, pretty much, now. I'm going to pass it off to President Howes at the next transfer meeting.
That's all for this week. I enjoy hearing from you all each week.
until next week.
Con Amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill- ^_^
5-27-13 DJ

Hola Everybody!

well a couple of things for you. for those that aren´t paying attention I´ve now been gone for 8 months. and for those that can´t wait for my return, it´s only 16 months away. it´s funny how time flies. Anyway.

I didn´t have a baptism this last week but Elder Crookston and I are getting on a roll and have 4 baptisms set for this coming week. 1 is the fater of some recent converts and the other 3 is a family that we started teaching last week. it should be good.

in other news, Back in Martin Carrera, Elder Lee and Elder Meneses baptized the Ramses' sister (Itzel)  that we weren´t able to and her boyfriend (Edwin). Better yet, President gave me permission to go to the baptism too!

It was really nice to go visit for a short time since when I left I didn´t know where I was going to end up.  That family is so cool. 

Also I saw a piece of Grafitti that made me think about the YSA branch a little.
Rock 3 (The abbreviation for the Young Singles Branch)

Hope everything is going well for Everyone. Nos Vemos!
-Elder Hill

5-27-13  Jordon

Hola todos. Como estan?
Well, I got a new camera. It's not quite as "spiffy" as the other one, but it works. Elder Spaulding decided to give it a test run.
hehe. He's a funny guy.

In mission news, there was a leadership training this past week. They came back and told us what they learned there. Something that they told us is a great way to keep lessons using the pamphlets. We've been seeing a bit of success using them in lessons and OYMs. We hope to start seeing a bit of progression in the work soon. No real news or interesting stories as far as investigators are concerned though.
So, [my friend] Ashley has started writing me now. yay. In her last letter she sent me a couple things. 

She sent me a Luigi and a pokemon bookmark. I made sure to put the Luigi in a special place.
That's all for this week, or at least for this email. If I come up with more for you today, I'll write you a letter.
I hope you're all doing well. It sounds like Tyler is going to start DMing soon. That will be fun. Just remember two things: Carpe diem. (Seize the day.) and Carpe DM. (Seize the Dungeon Master.)
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-