Monday, September 26, 2016

Here Comes THE BIG G.C. Weekend! - Woohoo!!!

My laundry room (or rooftop!)
September 26, 2016
So, the missionary work has been going well here. Recently, we've been dropping old investigators because either we can't ever find them home, or they don't progress. So we are focusing on finding new investigators. But we have about 10 that are progressing little by little. Right now, we have Santiago and Carlos that can be baptized in October. They lack some more teaching, but they both have a strong desire to be baptized. Actually, we have an appointment with Santiago in 2 hours, so that's great!

Elder De Leon and I are working really quite well together. We teach well, and we work hard without complaining, we Just Do It! The days are rolling by like someone going down a water slide. I'm learning so many different things every day, and I'm changing. I'm really starting to love everything about the mission. Can't believe I'm a fourth way done of the mission, 6 months!
Elder De Leon and I
I've been thinking, and there are 3 things that every member or investigator must do in the church. They need to pray and read the scriptures daily, and attend church every Sunday. It's super hard to find problems in the life of a person who simply does these 3 things. Of course there's so much more to the gospel, but it all starts with praying, studying, and attending. The ultimate goal of the gospel is to attend the temple. EVERYTHING we do in the church is to prepare us to attend the temple worthily. 

The blue sky photo, if you look closely, there are white balloons in the air, but I have no idea why. Another photo is when we had zone meeting, and some were in a circle without chairs as a  object lesson to show that we have to be united, 'cuz if one falls, we all fall.
Anyways, I had a great week, didn't feel like a week, more like 2 or 3 days, ha-ha. Y'all out there have a marvelous week, but most of all, ENJOY GENERAL CONFERENCE!!!

Elder Russon

White balloons in the sky. Not sure why, though.
My kitchen!

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Happy National Mexico independence Day! Sept. 15/16

New companion - Elder De Leon
September 19, 2016

Hands down, this week flew by! Elder De Leon and I are working hard and well together. I'm basically in charge of our area Cortazar, because I'm showing him all the people and leading everything. But were both senior companions. He has this transfer and next transfer before he goes home. But this change might be his last one because his visa expires one week before the end of the next change, but President is gonna check on it, 'cuz Elder De Leon wants to finish the full time of the mission. He's a pretty cool guy, short, obedient, and a little different. He's from Guatemala, and we work well together.

Right now, we have Santiago who has come to church 5 times, and is progressing well, but his new job he started won't let him rest on Sundays anymore. So he's gonna talk to his boss, or look for another job. He'll probably be baptized in 2 to 3 weeks. Then there's Carlos, who has come 3 times to church on his own, and he'll for sure be baptized real soon. He even mentioned about serving a mission, super cool. There's about 6 others that have a real potential for baptism. And there's several more that are just potentials. It's real hard for them to get to church, and sometimes finding them home or free to listen to us is hard too.

Everyday I'm progressing. My Spanish is so much better, also my teaching and coordinating skills. I can really see how the mission helps shape the future perfectly, in every little detail as missionaries. Right now, I feel like I have a bit more than enough things to do, but that I can just barely handle it, which is great, I love it. The time flies so much faster that way, I'm always thinking, Ok, what next?
Last Friday, the ward had a big party for the Mexican Independence day. We joined for about an hour, they had like a talent show with people dancing and acting, making jokes. Later, a TON of food served. Tortas, Tacos, etc, etc, etc. Super good food. 

Can't believe I've almost got a fourth of the mission done, goes super fast. This is my third change here in Cortazar, and I really love the area. Its a smaller town, less noise and business, more my style. I enjoy the members a lot, their really great. We had a ward mission leader coordination last night with the Bishop and the WML. It went terrific, we came up with several ideas to help the investigators, less active, recent converts, etc. 

All is going well, hope y'all have a fantastic week! Hasta el proximo semana! (Until next week!)

Elder Russon

Transfers! I'm stayin' in Cortazar!

Transfer Time
September 12, 2016

Not a lot of time this time, or really any other time. But, this past week went well. We had transfers. Elder Silva left to go open a new area and train a newbie, wow, lots of work for him. I'm staying here with a new companion Elder De Leon, who goes home in December, pretty crazy. He's pretty cool. We're gonna work and learn a lot this change. 

We'll probably have a baptism next week for Santiago. We also have a few other possibilities that can be baptized. Now that Silva is gone, and my new companion and I are both Mayor companions, I have more responsibility, and I know I'm gonna learn even better how to teach the people effectively, with the Spirit. 

A thought I've had before; When I started the mission, they told us as missionaries that we SHALL not teach without the spirit. Not shouldn't, but can't. And I was thinking, wow, is it truly possible to always have the spirit with you? I learned yes, it is possible. Because although we might not feel strong feelings from the spirit in every moment, the spirit can reside in us always, as long as we obey and are worthy. Many times we don't realize how the spirit works inside us. But I can now sense for sure if the spirit is present, and wow, how important it is for everyone to have the spirit. It's like a sure guarantee to heaven, haha.

Anyways, life goes well, have a fantastic week y'all!!!

Elder Russon

A bird flew in our house the night before transfers!

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Guess what...5 MoNtHs!!! Sweet, really running out of good title ideas...HAHAHA!

Sept 5, 2016
Tomorrow, I complete my 5 month anniversary...haha! The time sure has flown by. This week went normal. It was rather hot and tiring. The sun felt fierce for a few days, and I have a little head cold, so thats not super fun. I can tell theres a change in the weather. 

Last Tuesday or Wednesday, I had a cool experience. I was wearing my sombrero, and we walked passed a lady sitting down outside her house, who caught our attention. We headed for a less active to visit, knocked, no one answered, so we went back the way we came. On the way, we saw this lady speed walking in our direction toward us. She stopped us and immediately asked if we could visit her and her family. We were surprised, but very happy too. We said of course!

Laundry time!
Later, she said, your testigos de jehova, verdad? (Jehovah's Witness) And we said no, were missionaries from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. But she was still interested, and were going to visit her this Thursday. After we left, I laughed really hard, because I knew she contacted us because I was wearing my hat. Its very common here that the testigos wear these types of hats. My companion laughed, also knowing the same thing, a lot of members joke that we're testigos when we wear the hat. Later, I said, wow, this hat is worth every 110 pesos I spent!

Also, yesterday, one of our recent converts got a new job. And now she works 7-5pm every day, for 800 pesos a week. That's 800 pesos for 70 hours of work, about $0.64 an hour! It was hard to believe it, that's literally nothing at all, but shes okay with it. She plans to work there in the restaurant for about a year and a half, without rest. She says shes gonna read the scriptures and pray everyday, and attend Institue on Tuesday and Thursdays after her work. But I fear a lot that shes headed straight for inactivity. It doesn't matter what the situation is, attending church is mandatory for everyone, every Sunday!
Eggs and Herbalife for breakfast!
This is the last week of the change, and its very likely that Silva leaves, and I stay, but quien sabe? If I stay, we'll have another baptism next week of Santiago, woohoo! This afternoon, I also received another package from home, that was awesome! A chess set and a tie! 

It was a good week this week, love you all, and enjoy your upcoming week!

Elder Russon
Package from Home!
Thanks Dad for the Chess set and tie!

Monday, September 5, 2016

Get Up, Study, Work, Go to Bed....Repeat! - HaHaHa

Aug 29th, 2016
Another week?! ... What?!?! Haha

So, now after about 5 months, I feel like I'm adjusting to the mission routine. I'm automatic to roll out of bed at 6:30 am and say my prayers. The do some type of exercise before showering (that is after I go outside and light the boiler for hot water). Later, I eat my yogurt, fruit, juice, nature valley granola bar, and herbalife (a healthy drink with tons of nutrients, its pretty good). 

Then I start personal study with a conference talk from the Liahona, some preach my gospel, and then the New Testament. I don't quite look forward to comp study, but its alright, I usually try to practice teaching something to my companion. Then I finish off the third hour with some language study; the same talk I studied for personal study, in Spanish, and el libro de mormon.

Then its time to leave and work. Its rather hard to find people available until after 4pm in the day, but that's how it goes. We eat with a member, ''comida'', at 230 or 300. Then back to work - lessons, contacting, etc, (tons of walking, haha). 9 o'clock comes pretty fast, and then we plan appointments for the next day til 9:30, calling people, and whatnot. Then I write in my journal, do random things before bed, but necessary, and jump in bed ASAP. Before 10:30, 'cuz wow, every minute of sleep counts. Then about 10 minutes later, I get out of bed, and do the same thing, haha. But every day is different. So now, about 5 months in, I'm accustomed to it all, haha.

Things are going well, this week flew by, only less than 2 weeks left of the change, and you could say I'm ready for a new companion. My comp now is great, but the time moves faster with changes, but its all good. 

Right now, we have one solid investigator, Santiago, who has a baptismal date for Sept 15, maybe earlier though. We have 34 people that were teaching, a few that are progressing mas o menos, and the rest rather slowly. But nevertheless, we continue forward, haha.

So...we walk A LOT! - About 8 miles every day, sometimes more. I'm already accustomed to walking fast awhile ago, but now my mind is more accustomed, not so boring anymore. I'm learning a BUNCH of things, more Spanish, teaching skills, and so much more. Really, how to live and enjoy the life according to how God wants us, which is perfect. My Spanish is pretty great for the time that I have, and its not such a struggle anymore. But my mind hurts sometimes, after trying really hard to speak and understand. I think in Spanish a lot, I'm constantly translating my thoughts in Spanish throughout all the days. 

This week was nice and it went well, pues...until the next Monday, HAVE A SUPER-CALI-FRAJI-LISTIC-EXPIALI-DOCIOUS WEEK!!! Love ya all!

Elder Russon