Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Justin is a Zone Leader!!

This is a short letter this week—it’s transfers week and Justin is being transferred back to the city of Monterrey.  The big news is that he has been assigned to be a ZONE LEADER!!  How awesome is that!! I’m so excited for him.  His new companion is Elder Larsen and he’s excited to be teaming up with him. He mentioned to me on Monday that he wished, to himself only, that he would finish his mission as a ZL in Apodaca and he was astonished that his wish appears to have come true. He sounded great, very happy and energized and motivated. He will miss his friends from Valle Hermoso and Rio Bravo but he’s thrilled to be heading into the next great adventure. 
As always, thank you all for your support, love and kindness—for your letters and notes.  They buoy him up and give him tons of happiness.  Peace and love to you all.  You have my gratitude.

Hello Everybody,
Well this is going to be a quick letter because today are transfers and we’ve got a lot to do! I got transferred to Apodaca to be a zone leader. It will be pretty fun; I really wanted to go there to work! Apodaca is in the city Monterrey and it will be super cool to be there. I am super sad like always to be getting transferred out because I have really come to love this place! It is a great area and I hope that I don’t go crying from here! Bittersweet times but I will for sure stay in contact with the people of Valle Hermoso. Well off to do the goodbyes and the last things. I love you all and you can still send things to the Harlingen address. It’s a lot safer to send them that way. I love you all and take care! 
Elder Justin Powell

P.S. Sorry that I haven`t sent photos; this computer is kind of acting funny so I will see what I can do next week. 

Leia Mais…

Sunday, January 27, 2013

21 January 2013

I didn't get a letter from Justin for two weeks--we ended up just chatting online together and he didn't get a letter written.  Transfers were this week so it will be interesting to see where he ends up--I know that he's hoping to go back to the city in Monterrey. As you all can see, in this letter, he continues to do well and is staying very busy.   Thank you for your continued support and love--the letters and good thoughts.  I appreciate it and know that he does as well.

Hello Family and Friends, 
How are you all doing? Well it’s been a couple of weeks but I am doing well. Time definitely flies by crazy fast. Transfers are in a week and Elder Perez and I are super worried about who is going to go. It’s a crazy situation because there are 30 missionaries that are entering the mission and the mission needs trainers, I could probably train again. Who knows? Only God knows right? But I would love to stay here for 3 months more because as well as my past areas, I love my area. I love it here in Mexico, now I feel so accustomed to the culture and the life here, even some people are saying that I am now Mexican! Haha. But I really do love it here in Mexico, and I will be terribly sad when I leave here. But I am excited to be on Facebook after to talk with all of my friends of Mexico! :) 
Right now we are teaching a lady, Maria Teresa, who is going to be baptized this coming weekend. She has been taught for about a year, but has had many trials. Now she is fronting her trials and being strong. She is single with all of her 4 kids already in the church (my converts Alicia and Angel) and she is the only one left to enter into the church. So I am super excited for the family! Super stoked! 
Well this week is an awfully busy week! SO I am excited to get to work! I believe that they changed the return date 2 weeks earlier to return home... Well now I have almost 9 months left... :/ How the time flies super quick!!! Well here’s to an awesome 9 months!! :) 
I love you all, I am still waiting for your replies!! Haha Take care
Elder Justin Powell

Leia Mais…

Monday, January 7, 2013

Max's Baptism - 17 December 2012

Hello Everybody!!
Well this will be a short letter for this week, a lot to do today. But we will be calling on Sunday the 23rd of December, at 5 pm and after. We don’t know the set hour but that’s what will happen. So prepare yourselves for the phone call :). 
Everything is golden, Max`s baptism was very good! It was super spiritual!! We spent all day preparing everything for the baptismal service and then it started at 7pm. We ordered a cake and we put up a TV as well in the sacrament room. 50 people came to the baptismal service and it was super powerful. The best baptismal service I have been to just because of how excited the whole family was and as well as Max and his powerful change he had. 

But Elder Perez and I are continuing very well with the work, we only have 6 weeks left together and how the time flies soooo fast!!! But its super cool, the memories we have together. Well I love you all and I hope everything is going well. This email is dry because of the time, but we will talk this Sunday on the phone! :) 
Elder Justin Powell
P.S. - Please be careful in school Jack and Noah.

Leia Mais…

10 December 2012

Hello Family and Friends, 
How are you all doing? I am doing very well, Christmas is coming very quickly and I am getting very nervous about how fast the time flies. Today is a cold day, about 45 degrees today with this very high wind. 
Today we are going to Monterrey to renew my Visa, so it should be a good relaxing travel, sitting on a bus for 6 hours. And then this Friday is Max`s baptism, I am super pumped!!! Haha Max for the first time in 3 years has accepted the missionaries and will be baptized this Friday. All the members will be there because he is known by everyone and now it will be all settled. 
Christmas is going very well, we are still working every day, our mission pres is pushing us so that we don’t feel super trunky this Christmas season. So it’s all good, not feeling trunky… haha But I do miss all of you and I wish you the best Christmas season!
Well this past week was an ordinary week, nothing tooo too special happened. But I am learning a ton and I feel like I have changed a lot in my life. I do not regret going on a mission and I am so grateful for everyone that pushed me to go on a mission! 
I am sorry the letter is short, everything is the same and everything is going well. My comp is awesome, he is growing and soon he will have his wings to fly high. He is super funny because he knows a bunch of movie lines and its super funny!!! He does a super good Scarface and Godfather impression. Hahaha 
But I love you all, remember the real meaning of Christmas and serve one another! 
Elder Justin Powell

Leia Mais…

3 December 2012

¡Hola Familia y Amigos!
¿Cómo están? First of all I want to wish Jack and Noah a HAPPPPPYYYYYY BIIIRRRTTTHHHDDDDAAAYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope you had a great day on your birthdays and that you were both very happy!!!
So the mission is awesome still!! Yesterday was seriously a magical day! We have been teaching this guy named Max for months and he has had missionaries in his house teaching ever since his wife was baptized. He has attended church constantly, has listened to many missionaries, and has never had a desire to be a member of the church and be baptized. Well we talked to him for a long while yesterday, and his wife was present as well sharing her testimony and it was very spiritual. After a couple of hours of talk and testimonies, he finally had a strong desire to do it and he wants his son, Omar, to baptize him on the 14 of December!!! I was shell shocked, because he is very, very hard to convince and I know that God did everything in the lesson because there was no way that just our words would`ve convinced him to do something like baptism. Well now he accepted and we are super-duper happy!!!
The Christmas devotional was awesome!! Even Max and his family came and he was feeling very good. He even became convinced that Thomas S Monson is a prophet of God. Very good day!!

Max and his family after he commits to baptism

Well it’s hot in Mexico! It is super weird to have a hot Christmas, but it will be an adventure! Haha. I think it will turn cold soon. In the mornings it gets chilly, but in the afternoons, the sun is cooking! But there are days when the clouds roll in from the north and bring this cold. Weird weather here, just very extreme!
Well thanks for everything! I love you all and I hope that this Holiday season is magical for each one of you! Stay strong and remember the importance of this holiday season, to serve one another and show that true love of Christ. I promise if you serve your fellow man this Holiday season, you will receive many, many blessings this holiday season!
I love you all and take care,
Justin gets a visit from special friends--la familia Solis
Elder Justin Powell
Berenice's baptism
¡¡¡Enjoy las fotos!!

Leia Mais…

Happy Thanksgiving! 26 November 2012

Happy Late Thanksgiving!!! 
Well something very funny was that even though that they don`t celebrate thanksgiving here, I didn’t break the tradition of eating turkey! Hahaha Sister Norma, our next door neighbor, gave us turkey sandwiches at the end of the day, and I still ate turkey. I didn’t realize it until a little bit later... hahaha but I still am going strong with the turkey tradition. Well as you requested dad, I will give you my first year evaluation. :) 
Well I feel I have grown tremendously! I have been able to cultivate a lot of leadership skills and how to work in unity with my leaders and companions. It has been super hard but I have become more humble in listening to others and following their counsel. For you dad, you know that it is super hard that I listen to someone telling me what to do and agree. But I have become a lot better at that and handling criticism. I have grown to love my enemies as well. That was super difficult before, but now it is a lot better and I have grown to become better at showing charity to my enemies or when people reject us. I have learned a ton!!! And I still have a lot to learn in this next year!
I am so grateful for my heavenly father and that he has sent me here to the family where I am right now and I am sooo grateful for everything that my family has done for me. I am grateful for all of my friends as well. I have the best friends in the whole world and I love every one of you very much. I am grateful for the privilege to serve God for 2 years and I am sooo grateful for all the blessings that he has given me. 
Have a very great holiday season! I love you all very much! Send me cards and stuff!! :)
Elder Justin Powell

Leia Mais…

Justin passes the 1 year mark -- 19 November 12

Hellos to all!! RIP Aunt Karen, we will see you again Aunt Karen. I hope you are all well and feeling peace. We will see her again after this life.
Well today is very good! Now I am in the downside of the hill in the mission after last Friday. It is soooo bizarre how the time has flown by. Just remembering a year ago in the MTC, like if it was a month ago. And saying goodbye to my family like if it was only a month ago as well. It is soooo weird, and the weirder thing is that I have a year left and now I am freaking out because of how short of time is left and how much work there is still left and just crazy... But this year is going to be magnificent and I am excited to work in my final year, but stronger and harder. Ahhh and as well, I don’t know if I will be able to speak English when I get home, I am seriously losing my English skills!!! I cannot talk anymore. I am giving an English class in church for the members and all for free, and there are many times when I have an accent, or I forget a word. It’s a struggle, but it will be very funny when I return home not being able to speak English well. Dad you`ll have to help me out with translating for me haha. 
This week was great; my son (companion in training) is growing up. He`s growing his wings, and it can’t make a dad any prouder than to see his son grow. Haha. I guess I am finally understanding the joy of being a father, but I won’t be applying my fathering skills for a long while after the mission haha. 
We burnt the shirt this last Friday, just like tradition, and it was pretty funny. It went up very fast in flames. Too bad I can’t send video because it’s a large file, or else I would send it, but it was entertaining. 
Burning the shirt at 1 year

Justin and Elder Perez after the shirt burning

Several spiritual experiences this last week, we found this lady named Maria Ezequiel, and she is so chosen. She will be marrying a member soon, but she has a huge desire to learn and to be baptized and to change her life. It gives me great joy that we find people like her because I can really see how the gospel is a huge blessing in our lives. She gets sentimental in her prayers and all because she knows that she can leave her life behind and become a new daughter of God very shortly. And when I see that in the lessons, it grows my testimony in this gospel because I see people like Maria and others change their lives for the better because of the gospel of Jesus Christ. So I am pretty solid and happy! I hope every one of you is happy as well and that you may have a great Thanksgiving. I miss you all like crazy and I hope for the best for every one of you. Stay strong and stay safe. I love you all!

Elder Justin Powell

Daniel Morales (to Elder Justin Powell)
1721 Midlane Dr.
Harlingen, TX 78552
Send me letters so that I can see how you are all doing!!!

Leia Mais…

12 November 12

Hello Family and Friends,
Kind of a bad P-day. Pretty sad with my great aunt passing away and all. But things will get better. I hope that all my family is doing okay with the loss and that you all may find peace. 
Well my companion is Elder Perez from Tijuana and he is a great missionary. He has a great desire to have a lot of success! So it has been a very good time with him. 

Justin's new district

Super funny experience happened yesterday, Juan`s baptism was planned at 11AM, but the power went out in all of Valle Hermoso, and it wasn’t going to return until 6 PM. But we hadn’t filled the baptismal font yet, and with the power out, we couldn’t fill it any further. So the ward and we Elders planned the baptism at 8PM!! Hahaha but the power returned after church, but we already announced the baptism at 8 PM, so we still had it at 8 PM. So we had a night time baptism for Juan. It was an experience that I will never forget, it was very spiritual and a great experience. 
Juan's baptism

Well today is super busy because my son (mission term for companion in training) is still getting used to the area and mission and we still have a lot of things to do right now. But I love you all and I miss you all like crazy! Take care and much love. 
Elder Justin Powell

P.S. - Here`s to another year of mission work, I can’t believe that I will be going for a year on November 16th!! Love you all 

Leia Mais…

Justin becomes a trainer--5 November 12

Hellos to everyone!! 
I am going to be a father!!! I am going to train a new elder here in Valle Hermoso. I am pretty pumped, and so today I am going to Monterrey at 6PM! I am kind of excited to visit Monterrey again as well. It’s kind of nice to see mountains again after 5 months without right? Haha but today is a very busy day of transfers and all and so I will leave you all with more photos to enjoy this time. Thanks for your patience but I love you all and I miss you all like crazy. Take care!

Elder Justin Powell
Huge dust storm in Valle Hermosa

Service Project 

Puerto Rican missionary in Mexico doing good service
4 Elders on their way to a service project

Leia Mais…

Sunday, January 6, 2013

October 29, 2012

Holas to all of you! How is everyone doing?? I am doing fine in Valle Hermoso! Now the temperature has dropped quite a bit! Now it’s like cloudy 50 degree weather here in Valle Hermoso that started on Friday. My companion is all bundled up in his coat and all and I am in short sleeves, well actually the whole town is all bundled up and I believe I am the only one that has short sleeves still. It’s probably the most perfect weather to be riding bike and going to appointments and stuff. Good weather. 
Yesterday was Alicia and Angel`s baptism, it was a success! The only problem was the process of filling the baptismal font because now we needed to turn on the boiler, but there was a problem and so we couldn`t turn it on. Luckily the water came out luke-warm so that they didn’t die of hypothermia! Haha but everything went very well in the baptism, they were very happy!
Baptism of Angel and Alicia

Now this next Sunday is a older couple named Juan and Maria that have gone to church several times and they had a bunch of problems like a separation, but now they are fixing those problems, applying the gospel and all. It’s been a miracle seeing them fix their problems and now they are very ready to take this next step of baptism in their lives. I am excited for them and I am excited for a new convert of ours that his wife was baptized a month and a half ago, because they are going to the temple in a couple of weeks. I am super stoked for them because they have had a while getting to know the church, a bit of trials, but now they will go to the temple, and then in November 2013 they will get sealed in the temple. The members have been helping a lot with them and the other investigators. It’s a ward that hasn`t had much success lately but now they are super ready to work and we are working hard with them. 
Well everything goes well, nearing to a year in the mission! I cannot believe how fast the time goes by! But I still have the desire to keep working hard! I hope all of you are doing awesome, I love you very much! Take care
Elder Justin Powell 

Leia Mais…