Quetzaltenango Guatemala

Quetzaltenango Guatemala

9.28.15 Another Week In Paradise

September 28, 2015

Literally where I am is paradise right now, haha the members give us so much food and it is the best food i've ever had in the mission, but every day=) I love our area, it is improving little by little, this week we had some pretty big breaks!

         Ok so This guy named Jeffrey is 19 years old, he works for a member in his taco stand, this kid is a stud, pro chef and soccer player! The member family has been trying to get him to go to church forever now, but without success. So, this week when we went to go and teach him for the first time without the members present, we just said, ¨¨ look, I wouldn't go to a church that I know nothing about, don't worry about it. So, we are going to explain to you what we believe in and what is the mormon church, and then if you feel like you should come, you are invited.¨¨ Well long story short, he came to church on Sunday!!! It was awesome, he loved it, and is reading the book of mormon! He is super positive, we are thinking about a Mid october Baptism if he keeps progressing like he is.

            Ok so we have been teaching this crazy lady for about 2 weeks now, but this week we had some serious breakthroughs with her!!! She actually told us her name, she wouldn't tell it to us before, she is super reserved/ different. So she told us her name, and this morning after we taught her, she offered her first prayer in front of us!!! It Was huge, she has NEVER prayed in front of us before, this was a big step for her. It was a small and simple prayer, but we were so happy afterwards. THis week she wants to go to church, but first she wants to get to know the bishop, don't know why, but she is super insecure so if she has to meet our awesome bishop first before she comes on sunday, so be it.

           Eveline and Carlos are progressing really well, the problem is that This sunday they bailed on us with the whole church thing, and they did it while we were standing in the door of the church building waiting for them............... we were super bummed, But at least they are reading and praying and can't wait for us to go visit them again shortly.

            Haha so i've got something crazy to tell ya, so a couple of nights ago, I walked out of our bedroom to go turn all the lights off, when out of the corner of my eye in one of the smaller study rooms, I saw a dark shadow move.............. So I flicked the light on and found a HUGE rat!!! So nasty, so I shut the door and put a blanket on the bottom crack of the door to trap it inside. I called my comp over, and we planned out how we were going to get rid of it. Long story short, we filmed what is the funniest 4 minutes of my life! All you can see is a rat flying around the room (by ground and sometimes by air) and us running around with a broom and a dustpan (the only things we thought to go grab at the time). It was hilarious, and in the end we got the situation taken care of. (picture at the bottom)

              This week was an awesome week, even though our family bailed on us for church, 3 other people came which was super great=) I am doing good, I am healthy, my knee is starting the healing process, and the mission life is good. Love you all, miss you guys, have an awesome first week of October and general conference!!

Elder McLeod

9.21.15 Generator Powered Church Buildings

September 21, 2015

Hey family, friends, and everyone else that I love I hope you had an awesome week!!! We are already in week 3 of september, so that means that High School football is about half way over, man the seasons go by too fast, and so does the mission!
             Ok so this week Eveline made huge progress!!! A member family invited her over for FHE which she really liked........... like a lot......... but her husband is still kinda anti mormon. So, we had an awesome lesson with her and a member that is young and has a baby also, the spirit was strong, and she accepted to go to church! So when we went to go pick her up sunday morning, she was ready to go with her coat in hand, but her husband wasn't there. She said, to our surprise, ¨my husband is just finishing getting ready, go and we will catch up in our car.¨so, a little stressed out, we went without them. They arrived after the sacrament finished up, and we brought them in to sit with us like halfway up the benches in the middle. They really like the meeting and the organization! Their kids loved primary afterwards, and they really enjoyed our gospel principles class that we taught!!! They had to leave after the 2nd hour, but when we tried to put an appointment with Eveline, her husband said, ¨why at 3 pm, I won't be able to be there, why don't we do it at 11 am so that I can be there.¨It was a miracle!! I think they both were really intrigued by our service and how the members interacted with them. The members were on the ball, we ran around before the meeting assigning people to go and talk with them and shake hands and become friends=) Haha, usually the members here don't take the initiative too often, so we were running around making assignments So that they HAD to go and talk to our investigators!=)
                 This week we got caught in the rain a couple of times, haha The rain here is so cold, but usually the weather is so hot so the change is nice.
                 Oh ya, so with all of the storms and stuff, Sunday morning the power went out all over HueHue. So, our first sunday with our new family in church for the first time was going to be a disaster, but, some pilas members decided to bring a gas generator and hook it up to the church building!!! (didn't know that was possible), but it is, so we had half of the lights on in the chapel, and the microphone worked liked 95% of the time, it was a miracle!!!!
              Ok so quick surprise, about 5 weeks ago I hurt my knee,  but I didn't think much of it. So we've been working like normal for 5 weeks now......... but it's still been hurting. So the mission sent me into the doctor today in the morning, and what do you know, it turns out that I slightly tore a ligament in my right knee. Its nothing serious, but all of the pictures you see of me in the near future will include my robotic looking knee brace that I will have to wear for a while. I am SUPER lucky that it was nothing super serious, I know that I am being watched over by guardian angels!

             Things in our area are really starting to pick up, we are getting really excited about all of the stuff that has been happening recently, the future has big things in store for this area!!! Our zone, even though it is fairly new, has been killing it lately!!! It has been so cool doing interviews and getting to meet people for other areas in our zone that have true testimonies of the true church of christ. Honestly that is one of my favorite parts about the mission, is doing baptism interviews for other areas and getting to listen to the testimonies of people who recently have received answers that this church is true. They are always so strong and spiritual, it is the best!
                This week was one of the best weeks we have had here so far in Calvario! We are loving the mission, it is honestly the coolest experience!! Until next week!


Elder mcLeod

9.11.15 Week of 9/11

September 11, 2015

Wow my first of 2 9/11 holidays has past in the mission. Every missionary will have 2 of every holiday in his mission because his mission is pretty much 2 years exactly, it's weird to be able to say that by next 9/11 I will have my flight plan........... ehhhhh not going to think about that  AL ALL. The time is flying by, in 2 weeks i will be hitting 1 year, but it seems like just last week that I got to the provo MTC, weird stuff. Well I hope you guys all had a great week like I did, honestly we didn't have a ton that happened, but the stuff that did happen was really cool.

             This last week we had our monthly meeting with president in Xela. This meeting goes from 9 in the morning until 4 in the afternoon, and it is PURE REVELATION!!! Haha not kidding, our mission president could secretly be one of the 2 new apostles that will be announced in 2 weeks, wouldn't be surprised. Ya so I love that meeting that we have with him because what he talks about for hours and hours never gets even slightly boring, what he talks about he usually receives through study prayer and fasting at like 3 or 4 in the morning, you can literally feel that power when you enter the room! They always give amazing lunches too which is a nice bonus on top of the spiritual overhaul that always occurs.

             This week we visited Eveline and she is reading the book of mormon!!! So pumped for her, she didn't read a ton, but what she did read she liked. She forgot to do her personal prayers to see if it is true, but she said that by the next time we visit her she will have read and prayed for a couple of days in a row. The other ward that meets in our building had a baptism this week, so we invited Eveline to come, and she came!!! It was great experience for her to see what the baptisms are like and also how our church building/ members are.

            So we returned this week to visit a young family named Santiago and Vivian. We have visited them like 3 times, and every time it seems like only the husband has been paying attention or taking interest in what we are teaching. BUT, something crazy happened this week. So we went back to go teach some more and see how their book of mormon reading went. Santiago had read the introduction of the book of mormon and had some awesome questions that we were able to answer. But as we were finishing up, I turned to the wife and asked her if she had had the chance to read a little bit. Her response blew my mind. She responded and said that she had read chapter 11 of 3rd nephi, the chapter when Christ comes to the americas. She said, ¨oh ya, so this chapter talks about when christ came and visited the nephites and then gave Nephi the power to baptize.¨That was when my comp and I just looked at each other, both minds blown!! Haha We didn't even think that she had been paying attention in the earlier lessons, but apparently she is more ambitious than her husband! They are progressing well and we will see if this sunday they will come to church with us.

               After lunch on Sunday when we were going home to drop off our suit coats, we had a cool experience in the street. Some random little old grandma walked up to us and said that she needed to talk to us, that she had lots of questions and that she wanted to talk to us the next day, (today). We of course said ok, but when we tried to ask her for her name and number she just said that she would tell us that stuff tomorrow in the morning, we just needed to meet her at a random street corner at 10 o'clock this morning. Haha super weird, but we said yes out of curiosity. So this morning we went to the random street corner to wait for her, and what do you know, she arrived not 2 minutes later super excited to see us! We walked over to her house where she had three little plastic stools set out in the front yard. We sat down and began addressing the questions that she had, she was taking notes on a little scrap of paper that she had!! We ended up teaching her for 2.5 hours no joke!! Longest lesson of my life, from 10 to 12.30, but it was a crazy awesome lesson. She asked us to come back tomorrow the 15th and we said yes, she really wants to visit with us!! She is a single old little grandma that lives by herself, super nice but weird lady, we will see what happens.

               So we have been teaching Glendy lately, she is a single mom with three kids and she is super poor, and only 24 years old! Last night was a huge night for us because we were able to visit her and we challenged her to be baptized............................. and she accepted!!! She accepted to pray and ask god if our church is true every night until she receives and answer. She told us in the beginning that she didn't like the mormon church cuz we can't drink coffee, but at the end she said that if God tells her that the mormon church is the right church, she will give it up for good. Now it all comes down to her prayers and diligence in going to church/ reading the book of mormon, we will see what happens this upcoming week.

              I guess i kinda lied, this week a lot of really good things happened to us, it was probably the best week that we have had here in Calvario so far! We are super excited to work here and see what happens, we understand that it is tough, but this week definitely gave us a boost knowing that there are some people who are willing to progress. This week i learned a lot personally what I need to improve on which is good. I know that if i can change my weaknesses to strengths that miracles will happen, it's a process. Love you all and hope that you all have an awesome week! Email me if you've got a second, I always love hearing from you!


Elder McLeod

ps. tomorrow morning at 4 I will be on a bus to Xela, tomorrow are changes, but I will lot be having changes. We always have to go down to pick up the new members of our zone every time there are changes.

9.7.15 Week Of Elections In Guatemala..........

September 7, 2015

Hey family and friends hope you all had an exciting week, I can't believe we are already in September, 4 weeks away from general conference!!! As missionaries general conference is like christmas, it is the greatest thing ever, we are super stoked!  This week wasn't the most exciting week for us, there really isn't that much to report, but here we go
              Alejandro. So it turns out that tomorrow morning this guy will get on a bus and go back to the USA. Ya he was super positive, he has to go back to work and he doesn't know how much time it will be until he returns. Hopefully one day he will get taught and dunked by some missionaries.
              This week was the week of elections here in Guatemala, it is a critical week because they just kicked the corrupt president out of office, but in the elections there is one super good guy and one super rich corrupt guy who has gang ties. So................ the people here in Huehue have been protesting a bunch, trying to get this corrupt guy out of the race, but it turns out that he got 2nd place, (they do a re vote in november for the top 2 to determine the president). So he is still in it, and the people don't like that, there have been a lot of protests and stuff here in Huehue, on Sunday president Smith locked all of the missionaries in their houses after lunch all across the mission. So it was a good opportunity to relax for a bit, but it felt really weird laying on my bed napping at 4 in the afternoon=) We are safe, it's just that the people haven't really been in their houses recently, so it's been hard to visit people.
                Ok so 2 weeks ago we contacted this young husband and wife in the street, they were super nice and invited us back to visit them a couple days later! Long story short, this week we had our second visit with them and they are really positive!! The husband has a ton of really tough questions but they are honest questions which is great. THe only problem we are having with them is that they don't have a lot of motivation to read the book of mormon....... which is like the most important thing. So we have been focussing on that a bunch, I honestly think that this week we could get them to start reading.
                THis week we did divisions with the other district leader which is always fun. THe coolest part was that the comp of the district leader is from my group from the MTC in Guatemala City!! I attached the pic below, he is the black guy, super cool guy from Surprise, AZ! We killed it together which was awesome. Something crazy that happened is that while my comp was over in the other area on divisions, some members house was going to explode! Apparently it was filling with gas and the stove was on fire, the members evacuated the house and ran and found my comp and the district leader. So the district leader, thinking he is a hero, runs into the gas filled house to try and fix the problem, my comp freaking out ran in after him. THe district leader ran in and found a shirt and put out the stove fire with it, So he saved the house and the no one died/ got hurt which was a miracle. I don't know why he just ran in there like that, but hey it worked out, divisions are crazy.
the first all women's church i've ever seen in my life, they even have prophets and everything
                 So the rain has really started up again which is awesome, cloudy days and that light rain which is a missionaries best friend. So just to even out our happy feelings, our phone stopped working this week, so we've been a whole week without a phone, we had to take data on a payphone........................ super lame, but a good story.
We visited a couple of families this week, but there are just so many people here who are married, but live with and have kids with other people now, it's super sad. We have a good amount of families in our teaching pool, but it just seems like all of them have huge legal problems like that. BUt i know that we will find someone prepared!! We just need to keep looking. THis week was ok, it was very different due to the elections and everything, but next week should be a little bit calmer which should be good for missionary work.
                 I love you guys, thank you for your emails, I love hearing about how everyone is and how life is down in the valley! Until next week.

Elder McLeod