Tuesday, October 8, 2013

30 September 2013 -- More travel and funny Sister Conference

Hello Hello Everybody,
HAPPY BIRTHDAY KATY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I LOVE YOU SO MUCH AND HAVE A GREAT DAY!!!! How are you all doing? How was your week? What is new? I would love to hear from you all; you can all send me emails when you get the chance.
Well everything is going good, working with our ward and all. Really cool things happened this week. Everyday something very interesting happens and I love that about the mission, there is always something to learn from everything, even the bad. 
Well on Monday, I played basketball for the first time in a long while and I am bad now... It’s sad but I will get the skills back hopefully. Haha. But it was fun just shooting hoops. Today we are going to play soccer and some catch with the mitts that I have still from you, Dad. I love the mitts still and it’s fun to play catch still. :) 
On Wednesday we went to Valle Hermoso to have interchanges with the ZLs and it was a good interchange. I saw a lot of familiar faces over there and people that I dearly admire. I love Valle Hermoso and the people there are very nice and Friendly. This time it wasn’t the best because there were a bunch of mosquitoes!! We were in a lesson outside with this investigator and his wife who is a member. I was with my dear friend Elder Muñoz and the lesson was during the sunset and at night is when there are billions of mosquitoes in Valle Hermoso. Well every hand movement I made, I hit like 100 mosquitoes... Oh it was crazy. The thing is that we were teaching the investigator how to fast to receive an answer, and this guy was wearing shorts during this lesson with a gazillion mosquitoes! I told him that that for God being outside with shorts on was enough of a sacrifice to receive an answer. I felt for the guy, but somehow he managed. He said that he will still fast, so he should be receiving a super answer from God for his determination and sacrifice. Haha Also we had to clean the baptismal font there and in there were a ton of mosquitoes as well... Well I jumped to hold the tube that pumps the water out and yeah what a blast! Haha Getting in the water and doing that job was for sure my ``dirty jobs'' application. Hopefully they call me so that I can be on TV. I`ll include that photo too.
Dirty Jobs...cleaning the font!
I saw the Sister Maria Ezequiel and she is a member! I don’t know if you remember her but I was teaching her almost a year ago and after separating herself from her boyfriend and baptizing herself, she got baptized a little bit ago and when I saw her we were both sooo happy to see each other. I will include the picture, but she is very active and I am glad that everything worked out for her and that she got everything arranged to be able to take that step in her life and be very active in the church. She went to the temple last weekend and said that she loved it soo much and wow, she has changed a lot. She is this new woman ready for anything to happen, and she is a strong missionary as well, she is inviting every moving object to church. Haha. I felt a lot of competition with her to preach the gospel haha.
Justin and Sister Maria Ezequiel
But I saw other familiar faces as well. I didn’t get to see Max but I heard that they are going to get sealed on December 14th! I might have to return to Mexico, or extend. Who knows, but I would love to go to see the sealing in Monterrey. I am going to pray a ton to see if I can go. Also some dear friends of mine in Valle Hermoso are getting married in December. Ugh they are the same age as me and already in that process, haha. I am not a kid anymore it seems. Haha. 
On Thursday we went back to Reynosa and had a good day. Nothing much happened that day—just work and good work. It was hot that day but it was good. 
On Friday we had this conference to train. We trained all the sisters in the mission with their English. Super interesting--nothing like training 12 sisters that don’t know how to speak English. Haha No but it was very fun. Sister Morales was directing the conference and she wanted to do this special day with the sisters to try and pump them up. And so we trained them for about an hour and ate pizza.
Elders Barlow, Powell and Vargas with the pizzas
It was kind of awkward because Elder Ropp and I were the only men there, and it was like this girly conference. At the beginning we started with the hymn and prayer and wanna guess what hymn we sang? Yep As Sisters in Zion... haha and yeah Elder Ropp and I felt kind of weird and nothing like sisters giggle at us singing this very sisterly hymn. Anyway we were teaching basic English communication to the sisters because most of them are going to train American sisters in the very near future, like the first American sister in like 5 years is coming in November. And she has red hair! Haha just like my family. Haha But we were focused on how the Latina sisters can survive with their companion for the first week with the American sisters.
Then on Saturday was a pretty good day, well remember Gerardo? He got baptized finally and I got to go to Rio Bravo to see his baptism. It was really good and he was ready. He is a good friend of mine and now he is pumped to be in the church and to serve diligently. He is definitely responding to God`s call to serve him in his church. I'll include the pic as well. 

Baptism of Gerardo

Well everything is going well, wanna know something funny? I weighed myself the other day, and I weigh 153 pounds when I started the mission 177. Haha but I feel great, but nothing like having huge shirts and parachute pants right? (Haha the clothes aren’t that big... haha) Don’t worry though I am eating, Mom! Haha. But just working and walking all around kind of makes it hard to gain weight. But I promise that I will try to eat more! Haha 
I love you all and take care! Be cool and serve your fellow man. 
Elder Justin Powell 


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