Mexico Guadalajara East Mission

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Monday, November 29

Happy Thanksgiving and lots of a baptism too!!‏

Hey there la familia mia!

It sounds like there was lots and lots of happy, happy joyness going around this last week! That´s great because we had an awesome week too, all ending with an awesome baptismal service!

(Did I know that Chris was getting married? I don´t remember... either way, ¡Felicidades!)

So yesterday night we had a Zone baptism. The assistants and even President and his family came! There were eight baptized. I think that President is proud of how far this Zone has come. (it´s a long, long way...) I was so incredibly happy there! Everyone was all smiles the whole night. I guess that´s what happens when the Spirit is that strong. :D 

We were going to have a baptism during the service too, but there were giant marionettes in the streets and yeah, it was just a big mess... So Alejandra works over in down town Guadalajara, and there were these giant puppet things in the main streets over there. So all the bus routes were blocked and she couldn´t come to get her interview, then her phone died, then she still couldn´t come for church, so for the next week. She is going to get 
baptized. She´s the most chosen person I´ve taught so far in my mission.

We had a carne asada too this week. And yes those are whole onions and cactus leaves on the grill right along side of the meat.

We actually decided to celebrate Thanksgiving today because we had more time. It all started out in the morning...  I woke up and made pancakes for everyone. Élder Hollingsworth wanted some Mickey Mouse shaped ones too. For toppings we had peanut butter (thanks, Mom), nutella, cajeta (it´s amazing!), and maple syrup! They were amazing!!  Then later, for lunch, we had a chicken, lots of mashed potatoes (with turkey gravy!), and a bolillo (roll). It was delicious and almost reminded me of home... it was kind of sad because the gravy was our favorite part, and it cost as much as the chicken... ;) We were all happy and fat though so it was a successful Thanksgiving!

Con amor, 
Élder Gibson

Monday, November 22

It´s beginning to look a lot like... CHRISTMAS! ... even though it´s not Thanksgiving yet ... but that doesn´t exist down here ... ;)

Querido Familia,

There actually are a few trees that change colors (half at a time) here too. I think that the weather is actually getting hotter right now though... weird. I don´t really remember what real cold feels like... it´s a little chillier in the mornings but not too much.

You´re welcome, Josué. I did spend some time drawing those flags on your birthday card... ;)

I´m sending a package home for Christmas. Hopefully it will get there before then. Our elders quorum president is checking the cheapest way for me to send it.

Élder Rossiter (my district leader) got changed today, even though they said there weren´t going to be changes.  He was almost upset, because he (like us) has had a hard time finding good investigators that progress, and he finally had some. He´s going to Zitacuaro, on the other side of the mission. Eight hours away by bus.

Alejandra actually didn´t end up getting baptized this Sunday because she got pretty sick Saturday night and couldn´t make it. Which I´m actually ok with because she hasn´t had all of the lessons yet. If everything went according to plan last week, she would have. But she fell asleep on the bus one day and got lost. Then she got sick...  She`s still really excited for her baptism though! So she`ll be getting baptized this Sunday instead.

We also have Ileana. She told us yesterday that she`s going to get baptized before Élder Cruz or I get changed but she wouldn´t accept a date. She says she has to be sure that she´s going to follow through with the commitments after baptism. She said she doesn´t want to get baptized, go to church a couple times, and then quit (she´s married to a less active member). She does want to get baptized though, it´s easy to tell, and she wants to be sealed in the temple (it´s even easier to see that). So, we`re working with her.

Requests for Christmas...  Maybe some ties... and some Reeses Chocolate (they`re not as good down here...) That´s probably all. :)
We´re having a Thanksgiving dinner on Thursday night. We got some mashed potato mix, and I even found some gravy down on the bottom shelf crammed behind some salsa. I don´t think we´ll be getting a turkey though... maybe a smaller rotisserie chicken... ;)

That´s all for now folks!
Con amor,
Élder Gibson

PS: here´s a couple of pictures from the past little while...

Monday, November 15

No hay la mensualidad... :( Pero, ¡¡mi memoria est a reparado!!

 ¡¡Hey there familia!!

 I´m pretty sure I´m going to have a few Mexicanisms when I get home, or more appropriate: Guadalajaranisms... but that´s a really long word that sounds like a disease... I remember when Chris [Brooks, just returned]left on his mission... Every missionary that comes home is one closer to me! Ahhhh! That´s weird...

 Today we went to check our balances on our cards, and there wasn´t any money... (it´s because the anniversary of the Mexican Revolution is on the 20th, but they celebrate on the 15th for some reason... so nothing is open today, not even the banks. So that means no money until tomorrow.) So we´re living off of the reserves until tomorrow. (Don´t worry, we´re totally fine)

 I remember going to farewells of my friends... (everything seems sooooo long ago even when it wasn´t...) If Kevin was a Mexican he could have started his papers more then six months ago. They can leave when they´re 18.

 ¡¡¡¡¡¡¡Alejandra is getting baptized next week!!!!!!!! She told us after church today, "I think I want to get baptized." She enjoyed church a lot and our Relief Society President was her friend in the ward that day. Then we all went to The RSP´s house for lunch and hurried back for the open house. We had a few investigators come to that and we have another investigator named Ileana that I think is really close to baptism too, but she´s been close for months... But last night she told us that we´ve changed her perspective of elders. Because the elders that she knew were the slackingish missionaries of before, but she could tell that we work harder and want to help people. So hopefully that´s a good big step forward.

 Oh, we carry our Book of Mormons to contact with, then we ask if we can come to their houses and give them one and teach more about it. It´s a way to teach them a lesson and commit them to read it. There are different ways of doing it, but this is how we choose to do it.

 Well that´s all! Thank you for all of your prayers!!

 Tu hijo/hermano/nieto/sobrino/primo
 Élder Gibson

Monday, November 8

No transfers for us until Jan. 2

 Hey there, my dearly Familia!

 Well, it sounds like everything is going wonderfully at home! 16 missionaries is a lot! (He's referring to the number of missionaries from our home ward.) That´s like four districts! That could be a Zone! ¡Wow! We have one in this ward. It´s kind of funny, because the missionary from this ward went to the mission where Élder Cruz is from, and Élder Cruz is in this mission.

 So there´s this family in our ward that moved here about the same time that I got here, but didn´t know where the chapel was. She contacted Élder Ashton and I, but still didn´t come. It turns out that they were baptized in January and so they´re still very new to the church. They contacted É´ Cruz and I and now they come every week. (one of the most faithful families that I´ve seen) But anyway, they´re really good about sharing the gospel with their friends.

 Last night we had a wonderful lesson with one of their friends named, Alejandra. It turned out to be about 1 1/2 hour lesson. She is ridiculously ready to be taught. Towards the end of the lesson, she was asking what someone had to do to be baptized and she really wants a Book of Mormon. She kept reaching over and picking one up (we each carry one in our hand while we walk) and looking at it and opening it. She saw the names at the top of the pages and asked, "So these were prophets too?" And we just said, "YES!!" I really think that she´s going to get baptized. We´re going to give her a book of Mormon later today.

 President is coming to our housed tomorrow for interviews with Hermana Jesperson. So we spent a good chunk of the day deep cleaning the house.

 Well that´s really all that I have time for this week. Sorry it´s so short. Just know that we´ve been getting new investigators and they´re awesome!

 con amor,
 Élder Gibson

Monday, November 1

El Día de los Muertos...

Querida Familia,

I did remember of my 12th baptisamal anniversary, I didn´t tell anyone though...

I´m glad to hear that Grandma´s funeral went well, and that everyone is doing well, and back from Vegas in one piece. ;) 

Well, this week was pretty good I guess. We found some old investigators that weren´t even in the area book. They seem to be pretty interested and there´s four of them too!  Not that we´re focused only on numbers. I really hope they progress, they seem promising. We´re also working with a sixteen year old who contacted our Zone Leaders... but I think I already told you about her.

On Saturday, the Stake had an activity with the primary. "A day as a missionary" They had the kids come and work for a couple of hours with us in the areas that are closest to the stake center. It was really awesome. We went and knocked doors in some apartment buildings first and got some return appointments for the missionaries of that area. One of  the kids that was with us even introduced us at one of the doors. I think he was about 9 or something. He spoke about a million miles an hour, and I don´t think the lady understood him, but he did awesome. Then we went to a part-member family and taught a lesson. We went back to the stake center and the assistants were there in place of President (he couldn´t make it). Some of the kids were called on to talk about their experiences working with the missionaries, and bear their testimonies. The kids in my ward wanted to go with me, but they got assigned to a different companionship. Each companionship was at least 5 missionaries total (including the kids). It was an awesome activity for the kids!

Sunday we got an extra hour of sleep... and it was wonderful... ;) But seriously you only get two of those as a missionary! It´s a lot easier to get up in the morning now too. Maybe because it´s somewhat light outside...? I don´t know, but I like it!

There are actually a bunch of people that celebrate Halloween here too. That was weird to see... But bigger is: the day of the dead. I`m not really sure what it is actually. It´s like a cross between Halloween and Memorial Day, I think... something like that. There´s the sugar skull things, and a bunch of other
things that you put at the graves of your family.

It´s good that the garden is doing good. My district leader thinks that everyone in St George has a garden... ;) One thing that I wasn´t aware of is how many different varieties of chile(peppers) there are; Jalapeño, Serrano, Green, Ancho, Chipotle, Habeñero... There´s a lot!

Well, I´m still working on the virus in my SD card and USB... My district leader had the same virus and says he can do mine too. So hopefully soon I can send pictures again!

That´s all for this week! Thank you for all your prayers and everything!

Con amor,
Élder Gibson