Monday, February 24, 2014

February 24, 2014- Oaxaca

Elder Sawyer and Yamberla at the Poppy Stake missionary training activity

Wow, the time is flying by! It’s already the last week of this change! man, its going by quick. So, some of the highlights this week were first we had our zone conference. Me and E Yamberla gave our four hour lesson/workshop/class thing for four hours to all the missionaries in the zone and all the bishops and misión leaders and the stake presidency(and Pres. Leyva decided to show up). It was kinda like getting ready for and playing a football game. We pretty much spent all week preparing for that and getting everyone pumped up and stuff. It was pretty fun and it all went awesome. Also this week the stake had a huge missionary activity on Saturday. It was like a 12 hour event where they learned to cook and iron clothes and stuff like that. The missionaries, were only invited for three hours in the morning. What we did is everyone (26 missionaries and 125 youth) left to go contact in the street and bring the people to this open door event. It was pretty cool cuz at the church they had like the plan of salvación set up in all these rooms and it was like a tour of where we go and what happens after we die. Actually how the tour starts is every gets on a plan to Hawaii and the plane crashes and everyone dies and then you get the tour of the afterlife. kinda intersesting.. but its México. So I went out contacting with these two priests from our Ward for three hours. we had to catch a ride back to the church at 12. At 11:50 we were walking around when we saw this lady and we contacted her in front of her house. right away she invited  us in (which never happens) and she was so interested and everything and so we talked for like 5 minutes and it was awesome I was wishing I had an hour but I had to get these two kids back to the church. so we talked quick and I invited her to the church real quick and said we’d come back later the week. and guess what? She came to church Sunday and brought a friend! It’s literally a miracle because usually we gotta drag people to the chapel to get them to go. but it was awesome cause the members saw them and were just all over them. inviting them to sit by them, asking their names, getting them himnarios, its was awesome. and so sacrament meeting ends and they start to walk out to go home and an hermana asks them if they were gonna stay for the other 2 hours. They were so excited that there was more, but had to go cause there was an appointment. But they told everyone they would make plans to be able to stay the whole time next time. it’s awesome when people come to the church. and just after talking to them for 5 minutes. so ya that’s a little of just what happened this week. hope it all went good for you guys too love ya! 

Elder Sawyer

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

February 19, 2014

"ya that's the bus that took all of us to Mitla last week haha, Hermana Villanueva thought you'd like it. It's gonna be a little rough with him and English. Every Sunday we eat lunch with him and we practice doing interviews and mission stuff in English. and during his studies during the week he writes down everything he doesn't understand to ask me Sunday. the word of the day yesterday was "warm fuzzies". I had no clue. man"

Monday, February 17, 2014

February 17, 2014-- Oaxaca

This week was another good week. Things are definitely starting to pick up here in el Bosque. I gotta ton of respect for Elder Yamberla, he’s got two weeks left and he’s working as hard as ever. We started this week with a concilio (dont remember the english word) of leadership. It was way cool to have President Leyva talk to us for almost 7 hours. He’s such an awesome guy. but ya we talked about a lot of different stuff, but the big topic was how in May every companionship should be baptizing every week (so at least 4 a month). we talked a lot about that and how we are gonna accomplish it and what we need to change in the mission in order to reach this goal. This biggest thing we need is just more volume of investigators. We can’t only have 10 to 15 in teaching and expect to baptize every one. So we’re really working on finding a ton of new people (lots of street contacting) and just having the capacity to do it. Our mission has really started to improve, especially with obedience and were really young so I think we got a lot of potential heading into the summer but its gonna take a lot of hard work. Yesterday was another tough week in the chapel with only one investigator showing up, but we really feel that this is the week that things are gonna change. Last night we went to this house where a girl had just died. We talked about the plan of salvacion with her brother and aunt and ended up committing them to baptism. they had a ton of questions and a really interested and even asked if it would be alright to bring a friend to the next lesson (which we didn’t have a problem with haha) but last night we asked them if we could come back another time this week and they were real excited and asked if we could come back tomorrow (tonight) so that’s where were going tonight. oh and their names are Luis and Rosario.  so some of the news we got this week is starting in April we are not allowed to use backpacks. They want us to use a big purse pretty much. I’m not a big fan of this change, but we gotta be obedient. They said that they want us to look more professional and less like mountaineers or hitchhikers, so if you could look at home and see what you find this week. I’m gonna see if I can find something here... well ya hopefully we have some good news about people in the chapel next week. we are really felling that this is the week. love ya guys
Tell Mom that I hope she gets better. Hermana Leyva tells us bananas and rice fix anything, maybe try that haha
Elder Sawyer

Friday, February 14, 2014

February 14, 2014- Oaxaca- Zone Leader Conference

*all photos are from the Oaxaca Mexico Mission Facebook page- quotes by Hermana Leyva

"Yesterday, with the leaders of area of the city of Oaxaca, in the chapel of Atoyac."

"the Zone Leaders and Leading Sisters about to enjoy some pizza and freshly made salad"

Monday, February 10, 2014

February 10, 2014- Oaxaca- Mitla and Arbol del Tule

Had another good week this week, things are starting to pick up in the area (and zone) here. This stake/zone is kinda of notorious for being a tough spot to work (it’s the rich "rich" area of Oaxaca) buts it’s starting to get moving. This week we have our monthly meeting with the stake president. We sit down with him for a couple hours and look at numbers from the stake and stuff. It’s kinda fun going through all the numbers and looking at all the statistics. President Leyva had a meeting with Elder Oaks this week. Elder Oaks told president we need to be baptizing every week in every companionship by May. It’s gonna be crazy hard but it’s something that’s going to really take a huge effort. The mission’s been in a really rough spot the last year or so, so hopefully this helps us get up to speed with the other Mexico missions. we are doing a lot more street contacting, like a ton, and I think that’s gonna help us find a lot more people too. we also had our stake conference this week and it was pretty much just Elder Mendoza of the Seventy chewing us out about the missionary work for six hours. It was really cool though and the members are really pumped to work.  We also got to sing in conference, the zone, it went alright haha. A cool experience we had this week is we were out of stuff to do, so we decided to look for a reference someone gave us. The reference was a "a big house, with a black gate next to a tienda"(which is about half of the houses here) so we decided to knock a door and just pray this person we were looking for lived there. They didn’t, but we found this 20 year old guy named A....... We found out his mom had just gone to the hospital and he was really worried. Long story short, we prayed for his mom, taught him a little and committed him to be baptized. Boom. The lords always preparing people. Today we went to the Mitla ruins and the Arbol del Tule. It was pretty sweet, I look like a lobster right now.  I’ll send some pics and make sure to check Facebook cause Sister Leyva took like a million. Have a good week see ya guys.
Elder Sawyer

*all photos are from the Oaxaca Mexico Mission Facebook page- quotes by Hermana Leyva


"Our missionaries happy to get together to know two landmarks of the Earth in which they are serving: the archaeological site of Mitla, and the legendary tree of Tule.
Thank you with all my heart to brother Moisés Villanueva, owner of Sertexa buses, (and next President of the California Arcadia mission) for having provided this beautiful brand new bus for transport to the missionaries. This was the first trip of the bus! And transporting Angels!"

"Here comes president Leyva with his missionaries!!
They said it looked like the scene from Monsters Inc!! 
But I prefer to think they look like Helaman's army!"
"The Mexico Oaxaca mission, the Land of miracles!!
We'll bring the world His truth."

"A zoom view so you can see better the faces of your beautiful sons and daughters!!"

"The whole group in front of the Tule Tree."

Sunday, February 9, 2014

February 9, 2014- Oaxaca- Poppy Stake Conference

*all photos are from the Oaxaca Mexico Mission Facebook page- quotes by Hermana Leyva

"Our missionaries and a future missionary at the end of the Poppy Stake Conference"

"caught this photo of the President talking with some of our missionaries at the end of the Poppy Stake Conference."

Monday, February 3, 2014

February 3, 2014- Oaxaca & Monte Alban

hey I’m only on to send a report right now, and I’ll be on later tonight. I’m headed to Monte Alban right now! Send more pics of you guys!

Alright well, I just got back from Monte Alban. It’s way cool and super huge! It’s crazy to think people built it without like machines and stuff. A couple in our ward took us to go see it. We’ve been working with them and their brother and sister-in-law to get them to the temple , so it was kind of a thank you present. There’s a ton of tourists there from all over. It was weird to see white people and hear English. A couple actually stopped me and wanted to talk to me cause someone had given them a book of mormon and they were really interested about it. I seriously felt like I had just arrived in Mexico again, but this time it was English i couldn’t speak. I knew it was getting bad, but today i realized how bad. but ya i told them the story about the book, and it really helps to be standing on top of a pyramid that these people built thousands of years ago haha. But ya they live in Canada and are gonna talk to the missionaries (hopefully ones that speak a little more English). This week also i contacted a guy that DOES NOT believe in God. That was my first time in my whole mission that I’ve run into that problem. I’m still a little shocked. but we got an appointment to go see him later this week. Contacting in the street is something we do a lot of now, starting this year. We’ve learned different ways to do it but my favorite is to just ask a random question. We’ll walk up to somebody in the street and say something like- Hey, are you ready for the second coming or hey did you hear about that great apostasy? pretty crazy huh? and then from there we tell them that we’re missionaries and are coming over to their house to teach them. The only time it didn’t work is when we asked a member from another ward. ya, she had heard about the great apostasy. Yesterday we had a family come to the chapel. it’s the family Nunez, it was the mom her three boys (baptism age) and her little daughter. Their dad had to work but will come next week. they loved it and made a lot of friends. the boys are gonna go to mutual this week and then they’re  gonna go to stake conference we have sat/sun. they’re super awesome and got a ton of potential. Getting people to church is about 90 percent of the battle. i didn’t work a ton in my area this week, we had a lot of divisions. I actually went to spend a couple of days with and Elder who wanted to go home. he’s  having a pretty rough time, especially with Spanish, but we had some good lessons and he said he’s gonna stay. We actually found out he was at your highland football game, carson haha. Yesterday i got to eat lunch with a former mission/temple president, the ex MTC Mexico president, stake president and future mission president. It was pretty cool. We talked about scriptures. I felt dumb. Also two days ago our ward mission leader’s daughter died. She was 16 years old and had Down syndrome, we went to the services and it was really sad, but also really cool to see the faith of this family. We are going to their house in like 30 minutes. We are gonna watch the conference talk called domingo llegara. it’s pretty cool you should watch it. i can’t remember what it’s called exactly in English, but if you speak Spanish its better in Spanish. it’s on the mormon youtube channel. ok and one last thing that’s funny. Our stake president is so short he has to stand on the box behind the pulpit that the kids use when they speak hahaha. Have a good week love you guys
ill buy you guys some broncos 2014 champions shirts. they should be down here pretty quickly
Elder Sawyer