Tuesday, April 29, 2014

4/26/14 - Jordon

Well, I think this email might be a bit shorter than emails past purely because I cannot really remember much of anything that I wanted to tell you.  But, we'll see how it goes. (I had some pictures to send home to remind me, but I left my camera at the house.)
Kolter is still doing well. We met with him this past week, and we watched the Restoration DVD with him. He liked it, it gave him a visual to cement the description we had given him before. His Aunt's nonmember friend was there too. We asked him what he thought of it, and he said that it peaked his interest a bit. Good things to come from this, I hope.
I'm sure you all are rather interested to hear news about transfers for me. Well, so am I. They said that they were going to make the calls at 10 am today (AZ time) and it's now 11:10. I would rather like to tell you if I'm staying or leaving, but I don't know myself. You may have to wait until next week to hear about it. If we get them while I'm still here, I'll give you the update.
Mom, I think I forgot to let you know that I did get the Easter package you sent. I got it the Monday before Easter. Thank you very much.
Mother's day approaches. I will set something up as soon as transfers are over. If I'm staying, I'll ask the Frisinas if we can do calls at their house again.
That's all I can think of for today. Not a whole new stuff happening lately. Until next time.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-
We interrupt your regularly scheduled email reading for this breaking news update.
...and thus ends the reign of Area 5, totaling just shy of 7 months.
We just received our trasfer calls and it turns out that I am leaving. So, I get to spend today packing. (Yay! ) Elder Jewkes is staying. New companion coming soon. Bring on Transfer 14, Companion 12, Area 6. More info next week.
We now return you to your regular Email reading.
4/26/14 - DJ

Hola Everyone!

Well, this week has been normal overall. We've been prepping for the upcoming Transfer on Monday and President tells us that I'm getting transferred out of the offices then.  I don't know where I'm going or who my new companion is going to be, but this will be my last Saturday e-mail. Watch for the update on Monday. 
We also did a zone activity yesterday, We had a Free Car Wash! It was fun. We'd get people driving by to pull into the church parking lot and then wash their car. While the people waited, other missionaries who weren't washing would talk to them and introduce them to the Gospel. Several had tours of the church building during this time and wanted return visits from the missionaries. Overall it was a great success. Pictures to follow on Monday.(My camera was dead that day so I didn't get any, But there were several missionaries that said they would send me some so I would have them)
This is one someone sent him from the car wash.

Those are the headlines fro this week. Nos Vemos!
-Elder D Hill


Hola Everyone!

Well I'm officially not a secretary anymore. I'm now in my new area, Progresso National 2, with my new companion, Elder Rodriguez. To fill you in better, National 2 is still in the Lindavista Stake and actually isn't very far from Politecnico, just far enough to be the other Lindavista Zone (I told you that they split the zone a few months ago right?) But there was a stake meeting yesterday and I got to meet the Bishop of my new ward. He seems pretty cool. My companion I don't know that well. every time I had met him before he seemed really quiet. but everyone who knows him tells me he's a hard worker and that we will be great together. 

Unfortunately I forgot the USB drive that has the Car wash photos.. so here are a few others instead:
me with the Bishops family from Politecnico (old area)

The Office Crew (Secretaries & Assistants) having Costras 
(Costras: flour tortilla, meat Al Pastor, Cheese = Really Good!)
Mutant M&M next to regular one. (yes they have M&Ms here, but they are expensive)

That's all for now. Until next Monday!

-Elder D Hill

Monday, April 21, 2014

4/21/14 - Jordon

Well, this week was rather festive. The fact that it was the week of Easter might have had something to do with it.
First, before I forget, Last Sunday the Church put out a video for Easter entitled "Because of Him." Here's the link: http://easter.mormon.org. Perhaps you've seen this video already. I have fallen in love with this video. Not only is it good, but we have received instructions to try and spread this video as far as we could. I'm not certain if that was supposed to stop at Easter or not, but I wanted to share this with you, at least. Personally, I would love to show this to anyone that says we're not Christian. That might be a little hard until we get iPads though.
Kolter (one of the 9-yr-olds) is doing well. We taught him the rest of the Plan of Salvation, and he understood it. We asked him about a baptismal date, and he's decided to wait until June when his uncle comes into town, so he can be there, too. In the mean time, we'll keep teaching him and prepping him, so he can be ready.

Last Sunday, one of our members came to us and asked if we could teach her 7 year-old grandson to prepare him for baptism. We accepted. She later informed us that her daughter (the boy's mother) is less active. There appears to be some sneaky grandmother business going on here. I like it.
The past few days have been kinda interesting. Our dinner appointments each day invited us to dye eggs with them so we wouldn't miss being away from home. How could we say no? We only did a couple so as not to use up too much time. I got creative. [Below] are pictures of the [some of the] eggs I made between the three days. Also, yesterday we got the opportunity to help a family with their egg hunt by hiding eggs for the grandchildren to find. It was a lot of fun. I messed with the 12 year old a bit. I had a few eggs in my pockets, and after they had swept an area for eggs, I put an egg where one had been previously. She noticed the new egg there and was confused, but picked it up...I did it again, same spot. She saw the third egg and said aloud that it was creepy that they kept popping up there.  I love messing with kids.

That's pretty much it for this week. Quick question: How is Devin Saam doing? I haven't heard anything from or about him for a long time. He came into my mind the other day in a somewhat unrelated conversation. So, I'm following up.
Until next time.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-

Sunday, April 20, 2014

4/19/14 -DJ

Hola Everyone!

So this week has been kinds normal, except for yesterday. Yesterday, as several of you have heard, we had a 7.5 magnitude Earthquake hit Mexico City. A lot of the people here are saying they haven't had one that bad since 1985 (which was an 8.1). Everyone seems to be ok, our office has a few new cracks in the walls and small pieces of the ceiling fell in a couple of spots in the halls, but everything seems to be working fine now, and all of the Missionaries are healthy and safe (to my knowledge, everyone is fine, but I don't know everyone in Mexico yet.) So I guess I have a new life experience to add to my list.
This week we also had interviews with President Hall. We talked a lot about being converted to Christ and he shared the example of Peter and everything that happened with him (I'll let you look that up. Yay homework!), but we examined it as he pointed out to me the major conversion point of Peter. It was interesting for me to think on and how it can apply to me. 
As for our investigators, most of them are out of town. It's semana santa (holly week) and just about everyone, it seems, is gone on vacation. Next week should be back to normal though. 
That's all for now. Nos Vemos!

-Elder D Hill

Monday, April 14, 2014

4/14/14 - Jordon

Well, this week has been kinda interesting; primarily the later half of the week.
We've learned a more fun way to teach the Plan of Salvation to kids (or most of it, anyway). You tell them a story about them.:
One day when you were at home (Heaven), your parents (Heavenly Father) said it was time to go to school (Earth). So, you left for school (Earth), and while there you learned and took tests and solved problems. The story continues with a huge rain storm causing two massive rivers to form blocking your way back. We need bridges. Thankfully a guy named Chris(t) comes along. He's a master builder. He offers to build us the bridges we need to cross the rivers. He builds the first bridge for free granting us passage over the first river (Death). He says, however, that we need to do something for us to get the second bridge over the second river (Sin). He says if we can show [not give] him five gold coins (Faith in Jesus Christ, Repentance, Baptism, Gift of the Holy Ghost, Endure to the End), he'll give us the second bridge. So, we need to find these before we can go home. Once we find them, we show them to Chris(t), and he gives us the second bridge over the second river (Sin), allowing us to return home again (to live with our Father in Heaven). 
On Thursday we had another lesson with Kolter, the nine year-old I mentioned last week. This one was a lot of fun. We told him the story above and he really liked it. He understood everything we were trying to teach him, and he didn't have any questions. We're going to finish up the Plan of Salvation with him tomorrow. I think he's really enjoying this.
We got a new investigator this past weekend. He's another 9 year-old kid. We seem to be finding alot of those. This one, however, has an active parent, so we don't have that issue this time. I mentioned this family last week. They are all hard of hearing. So, the lesson was quite interesting. We contacted the ASL Missionaries and they came down for the lesson. It was us, the ASL elders (four missionaries in total), and their family there. This is not a very good situation for those who have ADD/ADHD (myself and my companion respectively) because we'd speak, the ASL elders would sign what we say, and we would see movement out of the corner of our eyes, and be distracted. I will admit, though, that part of my distraction was that when I wasn't speeking, I was trying to watch the ASL elders and see what I could pick out. But, we got through it. We're gonna go back this week to check understanding, and see if they really need the ASL elders. They might just be reading lips. More to come.
Saturday was much fun. We started the day by helping set up for the Gilbert Global Village Festival. One of those events where people can go around and learn about different companies and places, including different religions (ours was one of them, of course). I love doing thing like this. We basically helped direct where the vendors need to go, and helped them get set up. I felt like I should have had a clip board.
After that we got to go help with Special Olympics. I that was a lot of fun. It's interesting the reaction I get sometimes when make a lot of noise. I can be loud when I want to. And cheering on those athletes was a perfect time to do so. I love doing service.
Last night I got caught under a falling tree. Story time. We went to go visit one of our less actives and when we got there, we saw that a tree had fallen on their car and they were trying to get it out. It might be more accurate to say that the tree was leaning against the car as there was hardly any damage. So, to help out, I got under the tree and lifted on one of the branches we managed to get the tree off the car enough to back it out. As for me, I got out from under the tree enough that I only got a couple scrapes on my arm and a small cut on the back of my neck. I'm fine. I love the Lord's timing.
Speaking of the Lord's timing, on our way to the library this morning, there was a car stalled in the middle of the road. So we stopped to help get them into the church parking lot, for she was stopped right in front of it. Guess what...She hardly spoke any English. However, she spoke Spanish fluently. Good thing we had a Spanish missionary with us. hehe.  I love knowing Spanish.
That's it for today. Until next time.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-

Sunday, April 13, 2014

4/12/14 - DJ

Hola Everyone!

Well this week was great!  General Conference was fantastic, and a lot seemed to stick out for me. I (like my brother) loved Elder Oaks' talk from Priesthood session, along with several other speakers that talked about the answers to my questions for General Conference. 
Also, We had a baptism! Tadeo was baptized last night.(he's the young man in the accompanying picture.) He's super excited to be baptized and want's to be a missionary in a few years once he's old enough. His mom isn't sure how she'll handle that, but she has some time to figure it out. (He's only 12, so they have some time.)
Tadeo's Family (He's the boy in blue), Elder Smith, and myself
Yesterday started a little crazy. We had everything planned out as to what we were doing all day to make sure everything was ready for the baptism, but there was an issue at our food appointment where the member who signed up wasn't going to have time to make us anything, so he told us to go to a cocina (little restaurant, kinda like a diner) and he'd meet us there. Well we got there and he was nowhere to be found. Then he texted us saying he's running a little late and that we should start eating and he would be there shortly. Well, long story short (too late), we left the food appointment late and caused us to be late getting to the baptismal service. They couldn't start without us since we had the program, so the service started late. (~6:15)   We were a little worried since the other ward was baptizing at 7, but we figured they could wait if need be. President and Sister Hall came to the baptism and everything came together from there. The service went beautifully, the spirit came strong, and it was a great experience for all involved; and to top it off we ended at 6:58.  Just in time for the other baptism to start. Can't get much better than that!

That's all for this week, Nos Vemos!

-Elder D Hill
NOTE:  For those not knowing:  General Conference is the world-wide, televised services where the leaders of our church speak.  There are 5 two-hour sessions:  two on Saturday followed by an evening session just for the men, and two on Sunday.  We have General Conference twice a year; once in the spring and once in the fall.  There is also a General Women's Conference which generally occurs a week or two before General Conference.
Well, another week gone by. Where does the time go?
General Conference this weekend was awesome! All the talks were amazing, and several were very benefitial in our current circumstances. A few that I really liked were Elder Holland's talk (primarily for his passionate testimony. Practically yelling at the world. hehe), Elder Zuick's talk (What are you thinking? Great for improving relationships), and, of course, President Monson's openning remarks in the Saturday Morning Session (a nice little shout out to the Gilbert Arizona Temple). I also liked Elder Oaks' talk in Priesthood session about women not being given the Priesthood, but being given Priesthood authority. My personal thought on that was that it should have been in a general session. It seemed to me like it was intended for sisters, too. I'm sure there was a purpose for it though. I wish I could convey all my thoughts and feelings regaurding everything that took place this conference, but I lack the vocabulary or time to do so here. I hope you were able to see it all. If not, you should definately go back and check it out.
Earlier this week. We were contacted by someone in the YSA Ward. She told us that she had talked to her 9 year old nephew about baptism, and he wants to be baptized. His mother is ok with it. So, we started up with teaching him on Thursday. It was a good lesson, and he appeared to understand it all. Our next appointment is set for this upcoming Thursday. I hope all goes well with his lessons.
With the realignment of boundaries, we also gained a family where the mother is a member and two of her sons are not baptized yet. The problem we run into here is that they are both mostly deaf. Mom, I wish I had paid better attention when you were working with Erin. It would have been very helpful here. Anyway, we contacted the missionaries nearby that do know ASL, and we have a lesson set for this Friday. Wish us blessings.
Ok, I'm sure many of you have this question on your mind: When are we getting iPads? Well, I am sorrowed to say that it would appear that we will not be getting them for a long while, perhaps not even until next year. As I understand it, in many of the missions that do have them, they were not working out so well. Missionaries were not using the iPads in the manner that HQ had hoped for. However, I have not, as of yet, heard anyone who actually has direct access to such information say anything about it, so I don't know how acurate that information may be. But, that is what I have heard.
Question for those in Illinois: Does anyone know an Elder Clingo? He is a missionary serving in Spanish, and he is related to one of the families in one of my wards. Just curious.
That's it for this week. I hope you all have a wonderful week, and I'll check back next time.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-

4/5/14 - DJ

Hola Everyone!

Happy General Conference Weekend! I won't have much time to write later, so I'm writing a little early today. This week has been good. A lot of people have said that they will come to conference to hear the Prophet and Apostles speak. Thadeo is still set for his baptism next Friday, so I'll report on that next week. The Ramirez Family said they would come to conference as well. I hope they find the answers they need to settle their doubts about baptism. 

That's all for now. I'll see if I can find time to do a conference update Monday. Take Care!

-Elder D Hill
3/31/14 - Jordon

Well, this week brought a little bit of heart break, but over all was good.
Interesting "coincidence": On Tuesday, the crux of my training at district meeting was that people need to know who they are. As a person with amnesia struggles from not knowing who they are, so too does every person we talk to have difficulty in life because they don't know who they really are as sons and daughters of their Heavenly Father. Great minds think alike...or the spirit whispers the same message to different people at times. Good to know we're on the same page here, Mom.  (For those not clued in, Mom sent some words of wisdom with somewhat the same message.)
Do you remember that Stake meeting we had last week? Well, our fears were confirmed on Wednesday. We are no longer covering Freestone Park Ward. Instead, we have been assigned over Mesquite Ward. It was momentarily difficult to accept the change, but I know there's a purpose for every decision affecting this work. By the way, our wards' boundaries still don't touch. This is truely an interesting phenomenon, to me at least. It just builds my testimony stronger of this work.
Saturday, the 29th. Margaret got baptized! WOOOOOOOO-HOOOOOOOOOO! (Picture below.) She was a bit...no, very apprehensive and very worried about her trials, but she had the faith to go through with it. Statistically, we were not able to report it because of the reallocation of ward assignments (the other missionaries got the stat, and numbers don't really matter anyway), but I'm still counting it personally. I'm convinced that, at the least, I was in Freestone Park Ward to get her to baptism. As soon as she was cemented into getting baptized, I was out. The same thing happened with Brother Aug being released as Branch President. As soon as it was certain that DJ and I were going on missions, he was done. Even if these aren't the reasons for why, they sound good to me. One thing I've learned over the course of my mission is that, apparently, if I don't know why something is the way it is, I'll make up a few supporting reasons to ease my not knowing. Is that bad?
Me, Bro. Hanchet (in white), Margaret (also in white), Elder Jewkes
That's all for this week. Until next time.
Con amor,
-Elder Jordon Hill-
3/29/14 - DJ
Hola Everyone!

So I've now hit the 18 month mark.  All I ask is don't remind me how little time I have left.  It's a major distraction when I think about the time.
So anyway we had a good week. The down side is a lot of people seem to be going out of town for "Semana Santa" (holy week) which is the week before Easter, but they are preparing for it now so they don't want to meet until after then.  The up side is that one of our investigators is getting Baptized on the 11th! We went to teach him, and we were planning on inviting him to be baptized that night., [but] before we started we asked if he had any questions for us, and he asked "When can I be baptized?"  It doesn't get much more perfect than that!  So he is set for April 11th. Look for pictures in my e-mail following the baptism.
I'm out of time. 
Nos Vemos!

-Elder D. Hill