Tuesday, April 21, 2015

20 Apr 2015- Happy Birthday???

This week was so crazy! 

My birthday was pretty horrible. I'm not saying that to make you guys feel bad but it was the most stressful I've ever been on my mission, but we stayed relaxed through it all. So on Wednesday night we get a call from the assistants of the President and they tell us that we have interviews with the president tomorrow at 8am (Thursday 16 de abril). So we're like, ok cool. At 6 we wake up and bull the rush the shower, not together, and its freezing like always. (the freezing shower is starting to become a blessing the hotter the weather gets) And we dress up and saved by the bell, the president calls us at 7:25ish and tells us that our interviews are cancelled. Sweet. Not two minutes later we get a call from the Elders in the office and they tell us that I need to sign a few papers for my residency. So we take a bus to central and print out the papers that I need to sign. But turns out the signature has to look exactly the same as the signature that's on my passport. 5 hours we were in the internet cafe, sending and re-sending pictures of my signature to the office Elders and them telling us: ''nope, this loop isn't like the loop on your passport.''  They told me that if I didn't send two exact signatures, I wouldn't be allowed to stay in my mission and that I'd have to return to the states. This of course made the situation less stressful. So finally after canceling our lunch and dinner plans, I was able to get those loops looking just the right amount of loopy. It was a bit ridiculous but afterwards we ate some Burger Time. Burger Time is the bomb after a mid mission crisis. In the end of the day after working as missionaries do, my comp made me a Nutella sandwich cake and carved a 19 out of a '2' and '1' candle and sang me the Spanish version of Happy Birthday. If that's not love i don't know what is. It was a birthday that I'll never forget and looking back I can honestly say I hope I never have to be threatened of getting kicked out of the country on my birthday again. 

Turns out the milk lactose intolerance thing was a hoax. The milk and cereal diet has been restored.  But I'm feeling better, just drinking a ton water now. 

Some exciting news: two of our investigators were baptized yesterday. A mom and daughter were baptized together.  We planned their baptize right after church at 2 pm and it was really simple but the spirit was so powerful! Margarita is only 10 and was a bit nervous at first but she had a desire and I think she could feel the support and love from the other kids in the ward, it was so great. It was something really special and after the ordinance Indira gave her testimony and the spirit was so evident! I'm grateful for the opportunity I have to be a missionary and bring this gospel to the lives of others that they may this chance to grow closer to their Father in Heaven. I'll be sure to attach a few photos. 

Overall a great week and we now have a new investigator and his family that we're teaching. He actually found us and is searching for a better life for his kids. Its a never ending process, the life of a missionary.  Find, teach, baptize, convert, repeat.

I'm doing well and working hard.
Love you guys
Elder Padilla 

Happy 19th Birthday!

 Indira and Margarita - Baptism day

Thursday, April 16, 2015

13 Apr 2015 - Camera Broke

Dear Family,

All is going swell in the mission right now! 

On that note, none of our investigators came to church on Sunday on the account of ''it rained'', a recent convert of ours just recently became a recent convert back to the Catholic church, I broke my camera and a dog of one of the families we're teaching used my leg for a chew toy. 

But besides that, we're doing well and I have a funny story. So the other day we were tracting in a part of our area called San Ignacio, and we saw sitting in the porch one of our x-investigators so we go over and say hi. Well not knowing before hand that she had been conversing with two Bible wizards, we ignorantly embark to the porch.  We say I, she says I, the two old men say, ''hey sit down, let us rehearse every verse of the Bible to you guys and prove to you that the Sabbath day is on Saturday.'' By this time we were trapped because we didn't want to leave but we really didn't want to get slammed for not knowing every word written in the bible like these guys. Both of them were about 70ish and had both studied the Bible for 40 years. So our plan was to not talk unless we were bearing testimony of something. It worked pretty well. After 2 hours, they gave us the daily Avantista newspaper booklet to read and study. We said goodbye and planned our route for next time to pass through the street behind the house instead of in front of it. 

This week on Wednesday - Friday I coulda sworn I had Dengai. I had almost every symptom and my comp was getting a little worried because he's had companions that I've had it and he thought I did too. But we just continued working and it wore off. 

Last night we got to accompany the Bishop in a lesson with one of the less actives and it was one of the most powerful lessons I've ever been in. We were talking about faith and how we see over and over in the scriptures that faith without works is dead. And quite literally, faith in Jesus Christ without action is not faith in Jesus Christ. Faith in Him leads our hearts to trust in Him and begin to change the things that keeps us from feeling the Holy ghost.  We spoke about how now is the time to act. That not tomorrow, but today is the time that we teach our children because if you teach a child when he's young, when he's older he won't depart from it.

Estoy agradecido a ser un representante de Jesucristo por dos años de mi vida.  A veces es difícil a oír el Espíritu Santo porque hay muchas voces en la tierra pero algo que he practicado en los lecciones que tenemos es escuchando y teniendo fe en mi Salvador que yo puedo recibir las cosas que necesito por mis investigadores. Y algo que es muy importante a recordar es que estas investigadores son personas reales con problemas reales y que usted, como un misionero, tiene la verdad y el sendero por ellos a aceptar y vivir el evangelio de Jesucristo. Lo más difícil es a aceptar personalmente que este misión no es para usted mismo pero es para los personas que no tienen la verdad o sencillamente no pueden hallarlo. Como un misionero yo tengo la bendición a traer este evangelio a cualquiera persona que es dispuesto a escuchar.  También es más maravillosa a ver el cambio que ellos tienen en sus vidas también en sus corazones. Sé que José Smith fue un profeta llamado por Dios y que por medio él la plenitud del Evangelio de Jesucristo fue restauró. No fue un reforma pero un restauración porque cuando Jesucristo estableció su iglesia, fue perfecto. Un restauración fue necesario porque ninguna de las iglesias tenían el poder a actuar en el nombre de Dios ni un profeta llamado por Dios a dirigir la iglesia. Es mi testimonio que un fruto (como dice en Mateo 7) de la vida de José Smith o una manera que podemos ver la veracidad de su llamamiento es por medio El Libro de Mormón.  Semejante a la Biblia, El Libro de Mormón es un otro testamento de Jesucristo y sé que es verdadero. Lo he leído y lo he orado y puedo decir y testificar a cualquiera persona que si usted leer y aplicar los principios que están en este libro, puede tener la vida eterna. He empezado a leer El Libro de Mormón en Español y tengo una meta a cumplirlo antes del fin de mi misión.  
Todo bien y no puedo esperar a hablar con ustedes en Mayo.
Les amo!

Google Translate 

I am grateful to be a representative of Jesus Christ by two years of my life. Sometimes it's hard to hear the Holy Spirit because there are many voices on earth, but something I've practiced in the lessons we have is listening and having faith in my Savior that I can get the things I need for my investigators. And something that is very important to remember is that these investigators are real people with real problems and that you, as a missionary, has the truth and the path for them to accept and live the gospel of Jesus Christ. The hardest thing is to personally accept that this mission is not for yourself but for people who have no truth or simply can not find it. As a missionary I have the blessing to bring this news to anyone who is willing to listen. It's also wonderful to see the change they have in their lives also in their hearts. I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet called by God and that through him the fullness of the gospel of Jesus Christ was restored. It was not a reform but restoration because when Jesus Christ established his church, it was perfect. A restoration was necessary because none of the churches had the power to act in the name of God or a prophet called by God to lead the church. It is my testimony that the fruit (as it says in Matthew 7) of the life of Joseph Smith or a way we can see the truth of its appeal is through the Book of Mormon. Comparable to the Bible, the Book of Mormon is another testament of Jesus Christ and I know that is true. I've read and I've prayed and I can say and testify to anyone that if you read and apply the principles that are in this book, may have eternal life. I started reading the Book of Mormon in Spanish and have a goal to accomplish it before the end of my mission.

All well and I can not wait to talk to you in May.

I love you!

Elder Padilla    

Soy Wero= I'm Hot

Tuesday, April 7, 2015

6 Apr 2015 - Conference Weekend

Dear Familia,
Once again I have like zero time to talk, but yeah conference was really great this year.  I was blessed to hear 10 hours of Spanish general conference and it was so great.  I could just feel the problems and doubts that our investigators have kinda melt away.  A few of our investigator families came and watched and I could tell that the questions they had were answered, and that's enough for me. As missionaries we watched conference in the chapel and this guy named Carlos just walked in off the street and turns out he was baptized and over the past few years hes been carrying some guilt of past transgressions and I was able to talk to him about the process of repentance and give him the Gospel of Jesus Christ pamphlet to read and study and pray about.  Im personally very grateful for the Atonement of Jesus Christ and the hope it has given me for my future and my future family. I know that only through His name we can have a family forever and as a son of God I know that my Father is just waiting for me to make those steps for Him to bless me. What greater blessing can we have than to have the ones we love around us forever? 

One night one of our appointments fell through so we went next door and found out that the mom of the Bishop's wife lives there. So she invited us in and we asked how she was doing and shared with her about the prayer and how we can recognize the promptings of the spirit haha So shes like 70ish mas o menos and so we pretty much had to yell for her to hear and we were telling her how the spirit speaks in a still small voice haha ''What?..... I said THE SPIRIT WHISPERS IN A STILL SMALL VOICE!!!!!'' hahaha shes so great though.

I'm starting to love it here, who knows, maybe I'll stay ;-)

Love you guys and hope you had a great Easter
Elder Padilla 

Navajoa Zone Conference

Friday, April 3, 2015

30 Mar 2015 - New Comp, Elder Ramos

Dear family,

Today we had transfer. Elder Garcia got shipped off to Obregon and I'm now with my new comp, Elder Ramos.  He's 19 and he's been in the mission for 18 months. We've only been together for 3ish hours and we're both dirt poor.  I don't have much time to write but all is well. 

Elder Garcia and I had three families that we were teaching show up to church this past Sunday and practically triple the ward size.  My mission is starting to get tough but this little miracle really showed me that God is always looking out for His missionaries and will bless them if they'll be obedient. 

We're planning for two baptisms these upcoming weeks and I'm super pumped to see what happens with the rest of our investigators. 

And hey the package that you sent just showed up. I going to pick it up tonight but for future reference its probably better to send it to the mission address. 

I love you guys,

Elder Padilla