Monday, December 20, 2010

5 More Days Until We Talk to Dallas!

Hey fam!

P day has been changed to the 25th this week so we only have a few minutes to write to let you know about the plans for the Christmas call.

You can call me at one o clock in the afternoon in Utah, which will be two o clock in the afternoon here in Michoacan. I'll be at the home of the Arreguin family. I'll let them know that Grandpa Bob would probably be doing a test call this week sometime to make sure the number works and everything. We'll have one hour to talk and I'm super stoked! I'll be able to write the regular e mail this saturday and send the pictures from the baptisms and the Christmas stuff. By the way, all my packages arrived on time (don't worry Bam, I got my little Christmas tree set up on time and I have my presents and candy all set up underneath, and I've been enjoying the hot chocolate! I'll send a picture of the tree on saturday too). It was sort of a Christmas miracle, I'll tell you all about it in my e mail on Saturday!

I love you all!

Elder Aguilar

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

11 Months

Hey fam!

How is everybody! Sorry but this e mail will be a little short because I don't have much time. This week almost all my mail got here! We had a big party in our house. It was actually a surprise from one of the zone leaders Elder Vasquez. It turns out me, Elder Sanchez (who lives at our house), and Elder Vasquez all have birthdays in November, so we had a little party. I included the pictures.

We had a baptismal service on Sunday that went really well. It was a neat experience. We hadn't been able to catch her at home for like three days before her baptism, and I was super stressed that she might not make it. We headed towards her house in the morning with a taxi, and there she was with two of her kids all ready for church and the baptism, already walking towards the chapel. Sweet. Maria de la Luz Cisnero Galvez was baptized by my companion Elder BriceƱo. I'll send the pictures next week.

We were on divisions this week for three days with Elder Vasquez and we learned a ton from him. It was pretty cool. He came initially for the birthday thing, but ended up staying longer to help me with the district. There were a few problems that needed to be corrected in the other companionship, but everything is good now.

The sebichi was good by the way. It was way different than I expected but it was really good!

Mom- I sure can bear my testimony in Spanish on the phone for Christmas. Just remind me when I call. I'll have all the info for the call next monday. That's so crazy about Shalyssa and Kaela! How ironic. And cool. haha. My birthday package was awesome. As you can see in the pictures I baked my cake! And the build a bear was sweet! Love you mom! have a great week!

Dig- Wrestlilng sounds awesome man! Say hi to McCumber for me! And yes of coarse you can use my shoes. haha. Love ya dig. have a great week!

Nay- That music therapist stuff sounds awesome! That'd be the sweetest job! Where did Logan go on his mission? Love ya nay! have a great week!

Dad- That's sweet you met that Michoacan family. The people here are pretty great. I sent that testimony in a seperate e mail. I'm excited to get a copy of the other testimonies too! Love ya dad! Have a great week!

Shash- Good luck with your Jazz att. stuff sloosh! Tear it up at the old folk's home! haha. Love ya shash! Have a great week!

Den- That's sweet your doing so great at the piano! Let me know how your recital goes! Love ya! Have a great week!

Egans!!!- Thanks for the package! It was awesome! The CD you sent in the package arrived broken in half! It was a tragedy! I was wondering if you could maybe send the recordings over e mail and I could burn them onto a CD? Thanks! Love you all!

Thanks SO MUCH for the packages Bam, Hardings, Egans and Fam! All the Dear Elders too! Love you all!

Elder Aguilar


Party Time

Elder Aguilar's Birthday Party - Better late than never!

The Build-A-Bear is his present from our family - when you squeeze it's hand it sings Happy Birthday from all of us.


That's Dallas' Birthday in a Box we sent him.  Looks like he had plenty of cake!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Hey Fam!

How is everybody? This week has been good. It was a little slow and there were some pretty crazy trials for me personally, but I learned a ton and I'm super thankful for everything that happened. We didn't really see any success until saturday and sunday, when we suddenly started to find people all over the place. Quite a few members started to give us references for appointments to visit their family members that need the gospel, and we found a family that listened to the missionaries a long time ago and have been reading the Book of Mormon ever since, even though the missionaries hadn't continued to teach them.

The other companionship in our district moved in with us this week which will be sweet. One of the Elders has a ton of church music and a pretty sweet set up to play the music, and two more people in the house means two more people that might have extra food to share with me. It will also be really neat to get to know the other Elders better and be more involved with their investigators etc. We'll be doing divisions with them this week to share ideas for contacting and teaching etc.

Tomorrow one of the sisters in the ward is making us something called sebichi (i think that's how it's spelled) which is raw fish in lime juice. I guess you can eat any kind of raw fish in lime juice and it's healthy. I'm pretty sure I'll enjoy it.

We went and helped the Elder's quorum president paint his house the other morning for about an hour. My comp use to paint houses and cars in Peru to make extra cash, so he showed me how to paint a house right. It's not as fun as I thought it would be, but I learned how to do it pretty well.

This week one of the houses in our area caught on fire. A family with small children were inside asleep, but they were luckily able to get out without any problems. Everything in the house ended up burning right to the ground. It was pretty cool to see the people that live here take action to quickly help the family out. This wednesday we're going to go over there in the evening with some of the members of the ward to donate a bunch of clothes and stuff and help with some of the reconstruction.

Saturday we were knocking on doors when we arrived at a house that had the door open. Inside the door was a long hallway that went all the way to the back of the house. When I knocked on the door this little dog came running around the corner at the end of the hall at full speed. It ran straight to me with out even hesitating and just bit me on the shin. Luckily it was just a little dog like I mentioned, so I just laughed when it bit me and it ran away. It was pretty cool.

Well thanks for everything fam! I hope you all have a great week!

Gram- My dad pointed out to me that I totally forgot to thank you for the birthday money! Thanks so much gram! I was able to buy a ton of tacos for my comp and me and a better cd player to listen to mo tab and the draper sisters with the money that you and bam sent me, and there's still plenty left over for more tacos or tamales or something. Thanks! I love you! have a great week!

Mom- Benita Garcia Espinoza isn't quite beautiful thanks hope, that'd actually be Bonita Gracias Esperanza. But they are very simillar! haha. Thanks for the update on the fam. That's sweet that our fam is friends with Phillip now. That guy's funny. So about the mail, I still haven't recieved anything, but the Zone Leaders went to Guadalajara last week so I should recieve it all tonight at the district meeting. I'll let you know for next week. I'm attaching the pic from my birthday thing to this e mail! By the way the whole biting the cake thing is a tradition in mexico. They're supposed to shove your face into the cake too but I managed to escape that part. haha. I love you Mom! have a great week!

Shash- Sweet job with your jazz att concert! I can't believe how big you are already sloosh! I love ya! Have a great week!

Den- That's sweet your in B ball man! keep me updated about your games! Love ya! have a great week!

Dad- Thanks for reminding me about gram. Keep me updated on how she's doing. The District leader stuff has been going a little better now that the other elders are with us in the house. Love ya! have a great week!

Nay- That stinks about your knee nay! don't snowboard you could end up with a way bad injury. haha. So what's a music therapist do? That's awesome you're learning guitar. Love ya nay! Have a great week!

Dig- Sounds like you had a fun week man! Those junior high years are the funnest. I remember it like yesterday. keep me updated on everything. Love ya! have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Aguilar
Happy 20th Birthday Dallas!  I sure am glad someone made him a cake since he didn't get our package.

Elder Bricenio and Elder Aguilar - November 17, 2010

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Hey Fam!

How is everybody? This week has been pretty great! This letter might be a little short because I don't have a ton of time. So this week started out super stressful. We were having very little success. We weren't finding any new investigators and almost all our appointments kept falling through. When we reported dats on Thursday the only thing that looked up to par was our contacts. On Tuesday morning the assistants called all the leaders to let us know that the President was asking for us all to complete the standard of excelence this past week. As I mentioned in my last letter, I've never actually been able to do that before. I was really stressed by thursday, and started to think it just wouldn't be possible. Then I realized I was being very faithless. I remembered that these numbers don't gain us anything. The only reason behind them is to help us work harder to bless the lives of others. I decided that if the Lord had revealed those goals for us, he obviously wanted us to complete them so He can bless more of His children who need the gospel. So if the Lord wants us to have success, and we want to have success, and it's all for the right reason, to follow Christ's example and serve others, then what was going to stop us? The opposing side certainly isn't as powerful, the Lord will always provide a way. Anyway we started to work more faithfully, and continued diligently to the end, and we completed the standard of excelence. We also saw some incredible changes in some of the families we've been teaching, and the Spirit was alot stronger in each of our lessons.

Saturday was a special day, we had a baptismal service for Benita Garcia Espinoza. She's seventy six years old, and she's just beginning a new life. Awesome. I had the priveledge to perform the ordinance, and I was thankful to be a part of that special day, but it was kind of scary. She doesn't walk very well, hear very well, or see very well, so I had to guide her down the hall to the font. It was a zone baptismal service, so the floor was already a little wet from the first baptism. As we turned to go into the font, I was getting a little nervous about the slippery tile, because it would be so bad if an accident happened right before her baptism. She didn't end up slipping and falling. But I did. I think it scared Benita a little but I was ok. I had to tell her really loudly in the font that she had to keep her nose plugged when she went under water. She said ok. But when she went down under the water she got a little stressed and breathed in a little water. Then as I was pulling her up she wouldn't stand up all the way, and the Zone Leaders had to reach into the font from the outside and help me stand her up. It was pretty crazy, but it was a really neat experience. Her daughter and granddaughter recently joined the church, and they were really excited for the baptism. A few of her other children are also preparing for their baptisms.

After the service we went to visit a really neat family we recently found, the Martinez family. We had taught them the restoration, and also lent them the DVD of the Joseph Smith movie. As we began to ask them how they were and everything, the father began to talk about how they appreciate what we shared with them, but they aren't sure if they could come to church with us, because they felt like anywhere that talks about the Savior is fine, and that they didn't really need a change. The wife began to speak, and was echoing what her husband had said. Then she mentioned that they actually hadn't attended any church services in a while, then she began to cry, and expressed the need she feels for a change in her family. She said they really need the Lord's help with their kids, and that she just wants to be happy, and not have so much contention in their home. We testified of the Savior's love, the plan of Salvation, and the power of prayer, and put a baptismal date. It'll be neet to see how they continue to progress.

Dad- Thanks for the District leader advice. The Zone Leaders asked me to do some interviews in the district tonight, and I'll keep in mind what you said. I'll be pulling that $100 from my birthday out today just so ya know. Love ya dad. have a great week!

Dig- That u game sounds like it was sweet. Man your making me wish I could go sledding too, it doesn't even exhist here! Love ya dig. Have a great week!

Nay- That's crazy that the bagger thing was so tiring. I've never really thought about it but ya that'd be pretty tough. haha. I don't feel like christmas is here still. It's blazing hot in Uruapan. Live it up this Christmas for me though Nay! Love ya! have a great week!

Shash- Sounds like you had kind of a tough week! It's ok though. Just remember the whole fam loves ya, even in the bossy times. haha. I love ya sloosh. Have a great week!

Den- Man you saw shaky when you rushed the field! That sounds awesome! That's sweet what you learned about tithing too denny o. Love ya! Have a great week!

Mom- I'm pretty sure the letter should arrive ok, I sent it with a special international stamp. I still haven't recieved mail in a while. The Zone Leaders are going to the offices this week, and they'll bring the mail with them. But it's possible that I won't get the Christmas stuff in time. I do have a picture from the birthday family night. I'll send it next week if I can. I included pictures of the baptism this week, and one of me in front of a cathedral. About your question, Yes I always feel your love through the letters mom! Thanks. It helps me stay focused on why I'm here, and remember what an awesome fam I have. I love you mom. Have a great week!
Elder Aguilar
Benita Garcia Espinoza's Baptism - She is so cute!

Cathedral in Uruapan

Monday, November 22, 2010

Hey fam!

How is everybody? I'm doing well. So this week has been pretty up and down. It's been up because the area is exploding. The first three days of the week we found ten new investigators, had reached about two thirds worth of our number goals already, and set alot of baptismal dates. This place is really super prepared for the gospel. Then friday we found a new family of five as well. Everything was looking perfect. Sadly, we decided not to give it our all for the entire week, and I felt horrible by the end. There's nothing worse than thinking about the last week, and wondering if more people could have come unto Christ if I would've been more diligent. We ended up missing the standard of excellence goal for the mission by one person not making it to sacrament meeting, and one baptismal date too short. That would have been my first time getting the entire standard of excellence for the mission, and usually there are only about four or five companionships in the mission who reach it per week. The president came on thursday for interviews in the zone with the assistants. He gave us good advice that will help me alot. I don't want to sound like numbers are the only thing that matter by the way, they're mostly just a way to keep ourselves on track, and a way to show the Lord how much we need His help. We know we can't do anything alone, so we give it our very best to hit our goals, so the Lord can take care of the rest, and miracles can happen in the lives of His children here in Uruapan. Anyway, I was thinking about what things I need to change for this upcoming week to do better, and I came to the conclusion that sacrifice is what I'm missing. If I want to see sacred experiences happening here for these people, I need to make more sacrifice. I don't think it's ironic that sacrifice and sacred have similar word roots. I've been thinking alot about how the Savior said "he that findeth is life shall lose it, but he that loseth his life, for my sake, shall find it." (or something similar) Anyway, I was thinking about that, and I realized that if I'm worried about what's going to happen after the mission, or if I'm always thinking about memories from life before, or if I'm seeking more for my own gain than to complete the Lord's will, I'm searching for and more or less finding my own life, and in that process I'm losing it! I need to completely dedicate every single thing I do to Him, losing my life, then I shall find it. Maybe that's a simple principle I should have been able to figure out earlier on, but I'm just thankful the Lord is opening my eyes a little more. It's crazy how the more I learn about the simple basic principles of the gospel, the more I realize how much there is to improve on! sheesh. haha.

Me and my comp are doing well. We have similar mind sets and priorities, and it's been pretty cool working together. A little more about him, I found out his favorite food is rice. I thought he was crazy when he told me that, but then he made me some peruvian rice, and it's sooo good. He's going to teach me how to make it. He knows absolutely nothing in english, he's actually trying to read my e mail right now but he only knows the word yes, so he's not getting very far. We're working on his english and my spanish in the mornings for our language study hour. He's from an area in peru where many drugs are legalized, and he actually had a job before the mission, guarding a cocaine truck with a machine gun while they delivered to various distributers. Utah is a pretty nice place.

My birthday went well. We had a decent work day. A member family bought me a cake, and they all sang happy birthday to me at a family night. Thanksgiving actually isn't celebrated in Mexico, so that stinks. But I found out everybody makes turkey for Christmas, so I can pretend that Christmas and Thanksgiving are smashed together into one holiday.

Thanks for everything fam!

Shash- That's sweet about Rhino's Christmas tree! What did you get him for Christmas? That's good you're doing a little better on cleaning your room now. It always feels better to be in a clean house instead of a dirty one, and the Spirit can dwell there stronger. :) Did you take pictures of the snowmen you built? It sounds like that was super fun making the snowmen. Love ya shash! have a great week!

Dad- That experience from Sacrament is insane! I can't believe that actually happened! I've never seen that happen before. There were a couple classes in the MTC that I was in when a missionary made a comment like that, those doubts were usually answered in a word or two or ignored. District Leader is going alright. I'm now in the second district that I'm in charge of, and they've both had the companionships that are struggling the most out of the zone. It makes it a little stressful, but I feel like it's an great opportunity to learn. I'd appreciate any advice on how to get them more excited about the work. Anyway, thanks for always being such a great example dad. Love ya! have a great week!

Den- Sounds like you had a super fun week man! you're just livin the life right now. haha. Way to take on the challenge of a two verses one airsoft fight too. Love ya denny o! have a great week!

Mom- So the package business... I never got Bam's halloween package, and I haven't recieved any birthday packages yet. I did recieve a birthday card from the Hardings with a note from each of them though which was great! I'll see when the Zone Leaders will finally be heading to the city and make sure they check the mail room in the offices really well. That's too bad to hear about Mr. Keddington, he was the man. Thanks for letting me know about him. Thanks for getting that jacket sent, it just so happens that's the style down here (the professional missionary type style of course). Let me know when you get my letter! I love you mom! Have a great week!

Dig- That's sweet about your new airsoft guns. That pistol with the silencer sounds sweet. I did that same car project at kennedy! Love ya dig! have a great week!

Nay- That stinks that you got the whiniest fake baby in the world for your project haha. At least now you'll be extra prepared for a fam in the future. That stinks about your leg injury too. Keep me updated on that one. I hope everything works out ok. Let me know about the results from all your college apps too! Love ya Nay! Have a great week!

Love you all fam!
Elder Aguilar

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

10 Months and a New Area!

Hey Fam!

How is everybody? This week has been pretty sweet. Thursday after we had eaten lunch I got a call from one of the assistants, and they let me know that I would have special changes the following day, even though changes aren't for another week. Anyway, I'm now in a city called Uruapan, Michoacan. It's super sweet here! It's gorgeous! It's like a little tropical paradise jungle in the middle of nowhere! And the work here is great. The ward I'm in is doing really well. We've got over twenty investigators in teaching, we had twelve investigators at church yesterday, and four confirmations from baptisms earlier on in the week. That's a ton going on! We still have a ton of work to do though, because the majority of the investigators we have aren't actually progressing, so we're going to be working on finding new investigators this week, and... we have two marriages to take care of before the twenty seventh, so that those four investigators can make their baptismal dates. Sweet. The ward is super excited about the work, the members give tons of references, and everybody here is related just about, so the part member families bring about alot of interested people. Sweet. Tonight I'll be teaching the district meeting even though I don't even know the other elders in the zone yet. This will be my second change as district leader. (Note from Missionary Mom:  I didn't even know he was a district leader!)

My new companion's name is Elder Bricenio. He's from Peru. He's a super great guy, very humble, and is absolutely obsessed with the work. He hasn't been out very long, so he's still got tons of great ideas from things he learned in the MTC and stuff and it'll be great to learn from him.

A little bit more about the area. Our area has a national park in it, and we have to cross into it sometimes to get to certain appointments. There are rivers and waterfalls that go through the area, and we've got several members and investigators that live in little wood houses up in the mountains. The roads are about half dirt half cement. There are dogs everywhere! There's a sister in the ward who owns the largest hotel in the area, and will feed us every monday and every once and a while through the rest of the week, we can go to this restaurant and have whatever we want under her name. SWEET.

As far as the things that were going on in the old area, everything was going well. Alba's kids were ready for their baptisms, and the other investigators looked great.

Anyway, thanks for everything fam! Have a great week! I'll send more pictures of the new area next week!

Mom- I attached the pictures from Alba's baptism, a couple from the new area, some from my last day back in Guadalajara, and a couple of my Born's shoes from the missionary mall. The soles are getting a couple holes in them and are really thin, my other shoes are still great, but if I could get a new pair of the Borns that would be sweet. Thanks for that dear elder that talked about D & C 90:24. I loved the letter and I've been thinking about that scripture alot, and using it with recent converts. Speaking of letters, let me know when you get the letter I sent ok? Thanks for those ideas for activities, even though I'm not in that ward anymore. Maybe I'll have another chance to use them in the future. Don't worry abou the cold mom. It's still scorching hot in the day time, it's just like the last three hours of work. The sun has been going down at like six, and we work until nine forty five, so it gets a little chilly towards the end. I did already buy a sweater though, so I'm fine while I wait on that other jacket. :) About my birthday stuff, it hasn't arrived yet, and in my new zone we only get the mail about once a month, so it might be a while. But, the President is coming to this zone on wednesday to do interviews like he did a while ago in my old area, and he just happens to be coming on my birthday. So if the assistants bring the mail, I'll probably get the stuff right on time. If not oh well. haha. Thanks for everything mom. I love you! have a wonderful week!

Den- That's sweet you're going to get to see harry potter soon! I won't see it for a little while. haha. Good job on your duet denny o! I bet you and shash did awesome! have a great week den. Love ya!

Dad- That'd be sweet if I got to report to you at the end of my mission in the high council thing. Kobey is still growing his hair out? It's going to be huge when I get home. Speaking of hair, your grey hair comment was pretty funny. Are you really getting greyer? I didn't know Elder Salazar was headed to Korea! That's sweet, he'll be a great missionary. Thanks for everything dad, have a great week. Love ya!

Shash- Thanks for that reminder about the importance of the gospel sloosh. You have such a strong testimony! How great that you can be such a good example for me to help me be a better missionary. I heard you did great in the primary program. Great job! Love ya shash. Have a great week!

Dig- That stinks about the U man! oh well. Maybe next season. Sounds like your scout trip was pretty sweet. Are you still doing wrestling? You'll have to let me know how it's going if you are. That's sweet that you're getting excited about the mission dig. Awesome. have a great week dig! Love ya!

Nay- That's so crazy that you're practically in college already! It even makes me stressed out. Try not to stress about it though. I'm sure wherever you go things will turn out great. Just remember to spend alot of time at the institute building! haha. So where did Dallin Sweet go? I didn't even realize it's already time for those guys to be leaving on missions. I sure miss ya nay. I hope your enjoying these days cause things are going to start changing! But they only get better! Just think, before too long, we'll be having barbecues and group dates and talking about how hard college is. haha. Love ya Nay! Have a great week!

Bam- Thanks for the money for my birthday! I'll use it on something good! Love ya Bam! Have a great week!

Love you all!

Elder Aguilar
Alba's Baptism

Elder Aguilar, Elder Aguilar, Elder Ripley, and another Elder

Elder Aguilar & Elder Ripley in Guadalajara

Wearing out his first pair of shoes!

Elder Aguilar in Uruapan, Michoacan (wow - that's a mouthful!)

Elder Aguilar in Uruapan, Michoacan

Elder Aguilars last day in Guadalajara (Nov. 11, 2010)

Monday, November 8, 2010

Alba's Baptism

Hey Fam! How is everyone? I hope you're all doing well. This week has been pretty awesome. Last week was a little rough. We had decided to focus on a richer part of our area, because one of the area seventies said that there could be ten times as many people in Mexico that could be getting baptized and changing their lives if the missionaries focused more on the wealthy educated class. He pointed out that many of us are nervous that the wealthier people don't feel a need for the Savior in their lives, or that they just know to much to be able to learn anything from a couple of nineteen year olds. But he reminded us that it's not us that changes and teaches people, it's The Lord through the Spirit. Regardless of the people's situation, they need to know that their Redeemer lives, and what His plan is for them. Anyway, so we've been spending all day focusing on the wealthy areas and we've been finding alot of people! It's been pretty awesome. The other night we actually taught a lesson at the largest house in our area. It's huge! And the people are pretty rich there, and they know alot about the bible. But as Elder Oaks said, the Gospel of Jesus Christ isn't just to help us know something, but to become something. We've had great experiences in the new focus area, and we continue talking with all people we come across, not just the rich ones. haha.

Yesterday we had a baptismal service planned for Alba. Yesterday (the day of her baptism) we were a little stressed out to see that she wasn't at church! As soon as Sacrament Meeting started and she still wasn't there, we decided to go with a brother from the ward to swing by her house real fast to see what had happened. we were dissappointed to find that she wasn't home. But when we got back to the church, we found out that she had got there right after we left. It was the first baptism we've had of someone I actually contacted. It was so sweet! We were walking down the street one day, and we were going past this little house where a lady sells clothes in front. We usually don't contact people who are working, but she didn't have any customers, sowe decided to contact her anyway. She invited us back to teach her. After we taught her, she happily took the challenge to read and pray about the Book of Mormon. The Lord answered her prayers, and she committed to be baptized. As we taught her about the commandments she made all the necessary changes in her life, in order to be in harmony with the will of God. She never complained about the commandments or made any excuses not to obey. And yesterday she was baptized. Awesome. What a great example of someone who really follows what it says in the scriptures, and strives to become as a child, willing to submit to all things which the Lord seeth fit to inflict upon us. It was a great experience, and thanks to her example, her children now plan to be baptized this upcoming saturday! sweet.

Anyway so that's been this week. By the way the weather is changing. It actually is getting pretty cold and night and in the mornings. It's weird because the sky is clear, there's tropical flowers and palm trees lining the streets, tons of sunshine, and it's cold. haha. It's not so bad for me since winter's alot worse back home of coarse, but the people down here are already in their winter coats. I'd say it's gotten as low as maybe fifty or fifty five degrees. haha.

Love you all! Have a great week!

Nay- Katie has written me three letters!? I've only recieved one. And I wrote a letter back, I just haven't had a chance to send it yet. haha. There's no mail places in our area. But let her know I'm not just being rude or anything. That's cool that you got to visit Grandma Draper. That's funny that she didn't remember about her apple trees. haha. If you see her again soon you'll have to let her know I say hello and I love her. Love ya nay! Have a great week!

Den- That's awesome that you lost a tooth denny o! Sounds like the byu game was alright, I guess if you didn't have anything better to do that day. haha. Just kiddin. I'm sure it was fun! Love ya den! have a great week!

Shash- Yes I remember when I use to say hummenah! What good old times huh sloosh. That's so exciting about your duet with denny. I bet you're going to do super good. I think about you lots slooshy. I miss ya! I love ya Shash. have a great week!

Mom- We don't have any furniture in our front room? haha. Why? It sounds like our new ward and stake is sweet. Dig let me know that Asiata from the U is in our stake and that he sees him at church. And our home teachers sound awesome. haha. I'm excited to meet them all when I get home. That's exciting to hear Karli is going to Florida. That'd be a super cool place to serve a mission. About the Christmas package, if you could send that jacket that I got in the West Valley City Youth council that'd be sweet. I'd have to pull the label off but that'd be just about right for winter temperatures here. The bishop's been asking for some good ideas for activities in the ward, and I let him know that my mom and dad have both served in the stake youth, and that my family would probably have some good ideas for ward activities. If you could give me some tips on fun activities that would be awesome. If you wrote anything important in dear elders recently I still don't know about it. haha. The assistants were going to bring me my mail when they visited our baptismal service yesterday, but they forgot to give it to me, so I haven't recieved anything in a few weeks. haha. Anyway, sorry this is sort of an all business note. I love you mom. I miss ya. The more I see and learn on my mission the more thankful I am to have been born of goodly parents! Love ya mom. have a great week!

Dad- I haven't done anything with the tie yet, I did read your note and your suggestions though. All the other missionaries think it's super sweet. I'll send some pictures to ya of me with the tie and other cool stuff. Maybe I could get one with the President wearing the tie, that'd be sweet. haha. Thanks for your advice about the opening the mouth thing. I've definitely seen the results that come from talking to everyone, but I definitely needed that reminder and the examples you gave me. Love ya dad! have a great week!
Elder Aguilar

Monday, November 1, 2010

Hey family!!! How is everyone? This week has been pretty good. We've been working really really hard and seeing the Lord's hand in the work. In the past while we hadn't found any new investigators, but this week we found two new families! And the funny thing is, they live next door to each other. Sweet. That'll cut down on the time we spend walking from appointment to appointment.

So Margarita and Rene are pretty much set for their marriage, the only problem is that Margarita works all day monday to friday. When I say all day, I mean from nine in the morning to ten at night. Wow. That's alot of work. Anyway, they haven't had the chance to swing by the hospital to get their blood tests that they need before the marriage. Spiritually speaking they're doing great though! We had a baptism planned for this Saturday with Yenis, a friend of one of the members. On wednesday or thursday, we called Yenis' friend to set up another appointment to go teach Yenis, when her friend let us in on some bad news. Yenis was in jail. Yes, jail. haha. She ended up mixed up in a little domestic dispute, and the cops came and took everyone involved to jail. Anyway, she's out of jail now, and she's not in trouble for anything, because she wasn't actually part of the problem. She was just in the wrong place at the wrong time. We haven't had a chance to visit them since then but we'll see what happens this week. As far as Petro, we had to drop him. He refuses to quit smoking. When we ask him when he plans on smoking the next time he usually says "tomorrow." So we had to stop visiting him. But his step son Ricardo still loves the gospel, the only problem is, his mom has been super busy. Last week they didn't get to church on time, and this week they didn't come at all, so Ricardo still hasn't been confirmed! We'll be focusing on getting him there this week no matter what!

The other day we were studying and Elder Ripley noticed out the window that a little boy neighbor of ours (about two years old) was playing with some baby chickens in the front yard. Then we noticed he wasn't really playing with them so much as he was fighting them. He was chasing them around in this little tiny square garden, and kicking them. Then he would grab one of them and drop it down a little hole in their grass and leave it there while he chased the other ones, then come pull it out again. It was so crazy! We were laughing super hard. The day after the chicken incident, was a pretty weird day. I don't know if it was my tie or what, but all the little kids just loved me! When we left the house in the morning we were walking down the sidewalk and all of a sudden this little kid I had never seen before just came running at me from about a block away and gave me a huge hug! It was a little awkward. Then a bunch of other random kids were just waving at me and saying hi and trying to give me high fives. Kids usually like missionaries but this time was unusual. The whole day little kids just wanted to talk to me or give me candy and stuff. It was strange. Anyway, so that's been my week.

Nay- I can't remember but I think I totally forgot to tell you the tricks of using that bag I sent you! If your bag broke don't stress, when I get to talk to you on Christmas remind me to explain how to use it, it's really simple. haha. That's hilarious that you made concert choir and then you lost your voice. Haha. but sweet! that will be fun! Sounds like you had a pretty awesome halloween week. Love ya Nay! Have a great week!

Den- Sounds like halloween was a blast! Man denny you know how to celebrate. haha. You would like halloween down here. It's a three day celebration. First is Halloween, adopted from the USA. Then the second day is the day of the children, they make little alters with food that the kids like and the little kids get to eat it. Then the third day is day of the dead. They make food the dead people like, and somehow the dead people are supposed to come eat it. haha. Oh and yes we do answer the phone like on the best two years. I'm supposed to answer, but my comp always tries to get to the phone first. haha. Love ya denny, have a great week!

Sloosh- Sounds like you had a great time on halloween! how was trick or treating in the new neighborhood? That's too bad you were the only one who got a cola. haha. Oh well. How did the party at Bam's go? did you already have it? Love ya shoosh. have a great week!!!

Dig- Sounds like that spook alley was sweet man. Why is this your last year of trick or treating? I'm pretty sure me and tanner went until eleventh grade. haha. By the way you should tell tan he needs to write me more dear elders and let me know how he's doing. haha. Love ya dig! have a great week!

Mom- Thanks for the info on the birthday package. I'm sure it will probably get here on time. I'm excited! Elder Ripley's birthday is december 27, but I might not be his companion anymore by then. Anyway, I've been thinking about you alot lately mom. I sure miss you. Yesterday in church one of the counselors in the bishopric encouraged us to make life goals, and he read of some life goals of a latter day Apostle. One of his life goals was to always try to show his mom how grateful he is for what she's done for him, and he pointed out that the majority of the time that a mother has in this life, is focused toward the well being of her children. What an incredible calling! I'm just thankful I have the best mom in the world! I love you mom. Have a great week!

Dad- That's sweet it's snowing up there, down here it's just the same as since I got her pretty much. That would be so awesome if we got to speak in sacrament meetings together when I get home! It'd be incredible. Thanks for the little updates on the U. Don't worry I won't let it distract from the work, but make sure you let me know how the blackout went. Love ya dad! have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar

Monday, October 25, 2010


Hey fam!!!
How is everybody? I've been great. Well I have some news. I finally got to pack my bags! That's right! We moved... haha. I didn't get changed to a new area, we just moved to a new house. We're now living about a block away from the church so that's pretty sweet. It took tons of time to get moved on tuesday, and it stole alot of our work time but we still ended up getting alot done. We're now in a much nicer neighborhood, and a much cleaner house. It's pretty cool. The Spirit is present in the new house, and it's been great to have some change finally, even if I didn't really go anywhere new.
So this week has been good, but very difficult. I'm actually not sure what I can even write about. We were going to have a big activity last Saturday and watch the long Joseph Smith movie with all our investigators, but nobody ended up able to come. We were going to have a baptism and confirmation yesterday, but due to certain circumstances, neither of the two ended up happening. It's been a real trial for me, and I'm doing the best I can not to get discouraged. Petronilo is still smoking, Margarita and Rene are getting married this week I think, and everyone else has sort of fallen off the map. It's been tough.
We did have a pretty cool experience the other day. We were headed toward an appointment and a man yelled to us from inside of a garage. We went over there and found that he was actually a construction worker, and he was working on remodeling a house with his crew. He told us one of his workers has begun to worship the devil (weird), and he was wondering if we could come to visit the whole crew, have lunch, and teach them a lesson. The man that called us over actually already attends a Christian Church, but he's been to our Sacrament services before, and said he felt a good Spirit there and feels like we could probably help his friend.
Well, I wasn't joking when I said that I wasn't sure what I could write about. But I'm sure I'll have some miracles to write about this upcoming week. One of the greatest things about the gospel, is that there's always hope. There's always blessings right around the corner, and as long as we're following His commandments, we'll always feel the love of our Savior. They say every bad week in the mission is followed by one of the best weeks of the mission. Maybe the Lord just sees fit to give us trials that will help us grow, just before the blessings and opportunities start flooding in.
Thanks for all your support! I love you all.
Dad- About the money, I'm just keeping it saved in cash from the reimbursement to avoid the hassle of trying to get it back on the card. I've got enough back up money to last me a long time now, or to buy like a month's worth of all I can eat tacos for every meal. That's so awesome you're a high councilman now! That's great. It is a little bit of a downer that you didn't get to teach much in gospel doctrine, but what a great opportunity with your new calling! I'm pretty jealous about the regional conference. President Uchtdorf told the same things to Elder Newell and Elder Tibbits when they came to the MTC. I've definitely seen tons of blessings come from each of those three points you mentioned. Thanks for your advice about being in the Lord's hands, I still have so much to learn and become, It's incredible being a missionary. Love ya dad. Have a great week.
Mom- I'm excited to get the Dear Elder about the lunch thing! I bet it was a blast. By the way I do know Elder Dial. He's in my zone. He used to be a secretary. I'll have to let him know our moms hang out. Sweet. That talk from the regional conference about missionary work sounded pretty awesome. Yes I'd imagine that dad could be in the running for some sort of record for lots of callings in short time. haha. The new calling should last a while though. I really love getting those dear elders mom. I couldn't have a more loving supportive mother. Thanks for everything. I love you mom, have a great week!
Nay- Awesome that you're headed for a 4.0! is this the first term that's ending I guess? Sweet The second term is pretty cool usually cause of all the holidays but third term is the worst! haha. Anyway, that's awesome about the dance. I wish I could have been there. You should send me some pics of the group if you have them. That Phillip is hilarious. When I was the TA in his class he actually always asked if I had little sisters. I'm pretty sure I told you about it before. He would always ask me if my little sister was a big mama or a little mama. I didn't think one day he'd actually meet you and shash, and really like shash. haha. Well have a great week Nay! Love ya!
Den- Sounds like the U game was awesome den! They smashed those guys. Those jokes on the trax are the same jokes all those guys would tell when I went to the games with grandpa too! haha. Sweet. Love ya denny o. Have a great week!
Shash- That's funny about your story about escalators. I've always thought they were pretty fun as well. That's cool that you got to see Jaden at the confrence too Sloosh! haha. I sure love ya Shashy, have a great week!
Dig- Wow man it sounds like all your teams are doing pretty great. I was in a hurry last week finishing my e mail so I don't think I ever got the chance to tell ya that those car sketches are sweet! You're really good at that man. You'll have to keep sending me copies of your latest ideas for concept cars in the packages from the fam. I know what you meant about West Side Story, I never understood that show either. haha. Have a great week dig! Love ya!

Love you all! Have a great week!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar

Monday, October 18, 2010

Hey Family!

How is everybody!? I'm doing well. So this week has gone pretty well. We had a zone conference on tuesday that was sweet. We all started fasts from our distractions to help us be more worthy and pure so that the Spirit can work through us better. They brought that up with the "becoming" talks that I mentioned in my last e mail. They warned us that as we worked towards becoming even more obedient servants of the Lord, that Satan would be upping his game. It was true. We had a ton of opposition this week, but so far everything is still going really well. We still have the same people preparing for their baptisms, except Ricardo, the step son of Petronilo, because he was baptized yesterday. But Petronilo, his other step son Oscar, his wife Lola, and Margarita and Rene the other couple are all doing well and excited for their baptisms.

We were a little stressed with Margarita and Rene because there was a government promotion (weird I know) of free marriages for a month in Guadalajara, and the last day was last saturday and they still haven't been married! But we found out the city right next to us is having a free marriage promotion now, so they'll be able to get married this week. The only reason they hadn't already done everything last week was because of the death of Margarita's father and everything. So Margarita has been a little impatient with Rene, because he refuses to say the prayer in the lessons, and said he hadn't been reading his Book of Mormon. But the other night we went to visit them, and Margarita had to run check on something with a neighbor real quick. When she left the apartment Rene was like "Hey you guys want me to say the prayer?" We said yes of course. He then proceeded to offer one of the most sincere heartfelt humble prayers I've ever heard before. It was so awesome. In his prayer he mentioned that he was thankful for the opportunity he's having to really come to know his heavenly father, and understand His teachings, and the blessings He has for each of His children. I don't know if he's just shy or if he's trying to trick Margarita or what, but he's loving the gospel.

Petronilo is now on his third baptismal date, because he will not stop smoking! He use to smoke sometimes up to three packs a day. Now he's down to one cigarrette per day but he won't go any further. I don't know why. Last night I was talking with one of the assistants (Elder Jaen), and he gave me a tip to help Petro quit. He said we need to buy a box of his favorite cigarrettes, and a liter of milk (the kind that comes in a box not a carton). Then we remove the tobacco from the cigarrettes and put it in the milk and shake it up. Then we're supposed to put it in the fridge for one day, take it out for one day, then put it back in for one day, then have Petro smell it and take a little sip. Elder Jaen said he will throw up, and he asked if we could get it on video so he can watch it later (He was joking). Anyway, from then on, everytime Petro smells that type of cigarrette it'll just make him nauseous and he won't want to smoke. Sweet. Hopefully that will help!

Anyway, the area is looking great, and we've continued contacting everyone we see, and teaching alot of lessons. Lately we're just a little short on new investigators, but I have a feeling this week will be different!

Love you all! Have a great week!

Mom- You'll have to let me know how that Missionary Mom lunch goes. Sounds like it'll be pretty cool! Yes I did get the package! It was awesome. I've decided that oreos and pictures are the best things to send a missionary in Guadalajara. haha. I got Bam's package too if you could please let her know. She sent me a little bag of almonds and walnuts and stuff that was super good and lots of cookies that were great. Yes they do celebrate halloween here by the way! It's called day of the dead but it's celebrated the same I guess. That's stinks you all got sick. That letter is coming your way! Love you mom. Have a great week!

Dig- Be sure to brag about the U for me dig. That stinks you got sick in Idaho. Hope you get well soon! Love ya diggy o. Have a great week!

Nay- That sounds like a pretty funny date trick. Cool! Have a great week nay! Love ya.

Dad- Suitcase corn sounds pretty sweet. haha. Love ya. Have a great week!

shash- I can't believe I forgot your note last week! Sounds cool that you and denny get to sing. Love ya! have a great week.

Den- Sounds like you had fun on the four wheelers! HAve a good week. Love ya!

Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar

Monday, October 11, 2010

9 Months!

Hey Fam!!!

How is everybody?! I'm doing great.

So last night there were changes in the mission. We let everybody know that it was probably my time to go, since I've been in this area since 'Nam (commonly used phrase in the mission). So we took some pictures with a couple families and all that stuff getting ready for me to move to a new area. The zone leaders usually call at about eleven or eleven thirty to notify about the changes, which is right after we go to bed. So I went to bed pretty excited to find out where my new area would be. I woke up at about two in the morning, and thought to myself "oh well, I guess there weren't any changes." Just as I layed my head back down to sleep the phone rang! I thought "yes there are changes! I'm finally going to get to know another part of Mexico!" I grabbed the phone, and sure enough it was the zone leaders. I answered the phone, and one of the zone leaders said "hey could you go upstairs and wake up Elder Garcia? He won't answer his phone, and he's got changes." "Oh.... sure." I said. Anyway. So I'm still here in my very first area of the mission, and I'm thankful. We've seen a ton of miracles in our investigators lives recently, and especially yesterday went very well in church and each of our lessons, and I was secretly hoping to stay here for at least one more change. As long as I'm where the Lord wants me to be, everything is good!

The other day, Elder Ripley and I were studying in Preach My Gospel under the topic "talk with everyone." We began studying the scripture passages provided in that section, and came to a major realization that we needed to contact more people in the street, and a little less in times we set apart for contacting in the day. We've been talking to literally every single person we've seen in the street, and it's been going well! It's so cool to contact because when we follow what the Spirit indicates, we'll be saying something different to each person. When we come across someone who's prepared for the gospel, the contact just goes perfectly. Something interesting that we learned when Elder Bednar visited at the start of the year, is he said he'd spoken with many recent converts recently, and the majority of them said that they decided to talk to the missionaries not because of their smooth contacting or social skills, but because of the light in their eyes. Sweet. So as long as we make sure we're following the Spirit when we do missionary work, we can trust that those who are prepared by the Lord will recognize the truth.

We've been studying a couple of talks to prepare for the zone conference that will be tomorrow. The talks are about becoming, and not just going through actions. I especially like one from Elder Oaks called "the challenge of becoming." In the talk he points out that in various places in the scriptures it mentions that after this life we'll be judged by our actions coupled with our desires. He then points out other scripture passages that help us to recognize that it's not just having a testimony or desire and taking actions, but actually coming to be the person that the Lord wants us to be. He refers to the parable that talks about the workers in the Lord's vinyard. In that parable there are various workers that begin working at the beginning of the day, others that join in mid-day, and more that join in the work right at the end of the day. When the Lord arrives to pay them, they all recieve the same amount of money. The point is, that it's not so much that we'll be rewarded for the big difference we made in the Lord's work, so much as the fact that we actually became one of His servants. Many people can know and declare, and many people can abound in good works. But to actually become what the Lord wants us to become, we have to have a real change of heart. The person we really are, actually has to become something more. A good example of that is when the Savior explains to his Apostles towards the end of His ministry, that they still need to become as a child to enter the kingdom of God. Before that moment his Apostles had, on many occasions, demonstrated the strength of their testimonies, and taken action to follow Christ, but they still needed to go through that process of becoming what the Lord wanted them to be. The way in which we can do that is through following the principles of the gospel of Christ, and obtaining charity, the pure love of Christ. Elder Oaks mentioned that a good indicator that we've had that mighty change of heart, is when we actually no longer have any desires to do any evil. That's not just a decision, but a change that makes our heart and actual desires so pure, that we no longer, in any sense, have even the slightest desire to go agains anything that would be the will of God. I loved studying that talk.

So our investigator Margarita went through a difficult time this past week, as her father passed away about a week ago. She wasn't able to come to general conference because of his passing, and has had a difficult time. Yesterday we had our first appointment with her and her family since then. She explained to us that she's learned through the Book of Mormon, that if she has faith in the Savior, she won't have any fear or feelings of anger or sadness. She said that humanly she did cry alot over the death of her father, but on the inside her heart was rejoicing to know that the Lord has a plan prepared to make it possible for her to live with her family after this life as well. She is in a situation where she needs to get married, or have her boyfriend move out before she can get baptized. She said yesterday that she's getting baptized the twenty fourth of this month, and if her boyfriend can put together a wedding before then, they'll be married, but if not, he has to go. Sweet! She said that to her boyfriend too! He started planning the wedding today.

Thanks for everything Fam! I love getting your letters and I'm thankful for your prayers and support!

Bam- I still haven't recieved the last package you sent, but you wouldn't believe what happened. Last thursday, I recieved a dear elder that you had written just four days earlier! Maybe they're getting that whole system a little more organized. Hopefully they keep arriving in that sort of time. Thanks for always writing Bam! Love ya!

Mom- Have you been able to check for Cristobal's address in California? So I'm still working on your letter it should be on the way by next week. We had alot of cleaning to do today, and then I found out I've got to teach the lesson in the district meeting today so I had to take some time to prepare that as well and haven't had as much time to finish writing your letter. But next P day it's on the top of my priority list! I know what you mean about how it's tough to be a parent, because alot of the time when I think of my teenage years I feel like I wasn't a very thankful son, and we all heard about how important that gratitude is from President Monson. But Shash mentioned that her and the boys are heading to Idaho with dad this weekend. I don't know what the plans are that you and Nay have set but that'd be an awesome time to have some fun one on one time together! Maybe watch the Testaments, I love that show. I've seen it quite a few times now from the MTC and ward family nights. Oh yes I do remember Travis Latham, and that's cool that Merrill ran into our new house. Haha. Sounds like that was a fun night. Anyway. I was thinking about how you miss the KBYU devos. If I was you I would print off talks from Prophets on The words of modern day Prophets are just SWEET. Anyway, that letter will be coming your way soon mom. I love you! Have a great week!

Den- Sounds like you guys did pretty well in that last soccer game denny. I'm sure you did the best of all, even if you guys didn't end up winning. That's cool what you learned about Esther! And way to understand the importance of fasting! What a good example for your friends! Love ya denny o! Have a great week!

Nay- Yes I definitely agree that conference every day would make way more sense than so much school! That's a good idea. Maybe in the millenium. haha. You know it's tough to get advice like that from mom and dad. But looking back, I do wish I would have gone on more dates, and I'm glad I never really had a steady girlfriend, because that's a huge waste of time, until it's time to get married. haha. Seriously Nay I'm really impressed with how high you keep your standards, and I'm thankful for your example. It's going to make a big difference in how Shash's teenage life goes as well I bet. That's cool that you're excited to live outside of home. Haha. It's fun, but the first thing I learned when I left is that I didn't enjoy our time with the fam as much as I should have. I'm looking forward to that when I get back! Just remember nay, the real world is in our home, and in the scriptures, and the temple, and living a righteous life. Everything else is going to end someday. I love ya Nay! Have a great week!

Dad- I can't believe you guys didn't finish the ribs! haha. Just kidding. Those ribs are delicious though. So thanks for the tips on how the U is doing. It's too bad I'm missing such a good season, but what ever I sacrifice to be serving the Lord will come back a hundred fold. So when I get home the U will probably win all the BCS bowls, and the superbowl. That's cool that Dig is getting into the wrestling season. Those were good old days! Thanks for everything Dad. Love ya! Have a great week!

Dig- School is tough man. I remember how much I didn't like it there too. haha. That's awesome that you're so good at drafting though! I loved the drafting class that I took. Maybe after the mission you can give me some drafting tips that you learn while I'm gone. Sweet. Hey I wanted to give you a tip for wrestling. Pins are sweet and winning is always fun, but the matches I remember best that were the coolest were the ones that went all three rounds, were really tough, and I either barely won or lost. Haha. So don't get discouraged when that's the case! Love ya diggy! Have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar
Petronilo and his family

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

General Conference was AWESOME!!!

Hey fam how is everyone?! Holy cats this week has been soooo sweet! Not only is the work going well, but conference was AWESOME!!!

So this week we found out that my good buddy Elder Newell is our new zone leader, and my trainer Elder Moberg is going to be an assistant now with Elder Jaen. It's pretty sweet to see that I've spent my time in the MTC and my first while in the field with the best missionaries out here. It's also awesome to be able to work in such close proximity with them and learn so much from their examples. It's pretty great.

All our investigators are doing great lately. Petronilo has a baptism set up for this coming Sunday and is super excited. His wife has also begun to listen to us and is pretty hopeful to see some real changes in her life. Their family is in rough shape, and I love seeing them turn to the Lord for help and immediately being blessed for it. It's great.

We've been teaching a lady named Margarita and her family for a little while now. Her and her boyfriend both want to get baptized, but their going to have to get married first. They've had all kinds of opposition lately. First Margarita's parents started telling her that she couldn't abandon the family tradition of the Catholic church, but she has a very strong testimony and is set on being baptized. Then her and Rene (her boyfriend) started to question whether or not they really want to get married. Then her job schedule changed, and now she works until about nine thirty at night so it's almost impossible to visit them. Then they had a firm resolve to make it to general conference this weekend, and the night the conference, Margarita's father passed away. It's clear that the adversary is doing everything they can to stop this family from entering in the pathway the Lord has prepared for them, but I continue to be amazed by their strength and their faith, and I know that everything is going to turn out ok.

We've been visiting Marco and Beatriz alot again lately, and they're pretty excited about the gospel. They're what many missionaries refer to as "dry members," because they always come to church, they have testimonies, they read the Book of Mormon daily, they just will not get baptized! I don't know what their reasoning is behind waiting to recieve the blessings that are prepared for their family but it's crazy. They both bore their testimonies to us last night of the Book of Mormon, the Restoration, and most importantly the Savior, and at the end said there's nothing that's keeping them from being baptized right now, but they still won't do it! We challenged them to say a prayer last night and just decide once and for all if they plan to progress in the gospel. I hope they can choose what will be best for their family in the eternities.

Conference was SWEET! My testimony has grown a ton of the fact that Thomas S. Monson really is a Prophet of God here on the earth today to guide us and direct us, and help us be in harmony with God's will. My favorite part of all of conference was the talks by the first presidency in Priesthood Session. I had recently read the talk "Beware of Pride" from President Benson, so when President Uchtdorf said he was going to add on to that talk I was super excited. I've come to realize just how darn prideful I am and it's something I have to change. It's like my personal Goliath at this point in my life. I loved President Uchtdorf's example of being like the pen he use to own as a pilot. He said the pen never worked differently depending on the altitude, it never complained of the time of day, or the place in the world, it was always ready to serve him regardless. That's really how I want to be with the Lord. No matter what the situation, no matter what the time or place, no matter what I feel like, I want to do His will. After President Uchtdorf's talk I thought "woa that's going to be the best talk of the session" but then President Eyring got up and holy cow! I haven't felt the Spirit that strong in a long time. I loved his talk about always being worthy for the Holy Ghost to magnify our spiritual power. I was filled with promptings and ideas from the Spirit that I'm just excited to apply in the work. I decided that must have been the best talk of conference, then President Monson got up, and it was basically like watching him slay the devil with a two edge sword! It's was so awesome. By the end of Priesthood Session I just wanted to go get on a bus and declare repentance to all the passengers. It was awesome. Then the next day, the talk President Monson gave about Gratitude was incredible. I don't know if any of you heard, but they had to change out the spanish translator four times in that talk, because they were crying so hard, filled with the Spirit, they literally couldn't continue. I know it's true what he said, that if we really always have an attitude full of gratitude for everything we've been blessed with, we won't feel anything bad or prideful or think anything inappropriate. Gratitude really is the beginning of all other virtues. Awesome. I thought it was interesting that the main points of the conference were agency, missionary work, integrity, and avoiding the dangers of the media. All things we must need to work on. It's funny that they talk about the dangers of the media every single time! They're even saying now to pretty much avoid video games and texting at all costs, and be super careful on the internet. Wonder why they say it every time, maybe because nobody is making any changes! We need to follow the Prophet a little more diligently!

Anyway, Thanks for everything family. I love your support and your awesome examples. I love you all! Have a great week!

Dad- That's crazy about the scorpion story from Lincoln's class! Actually there's a ton of members here who get upset if we put our backpacks of the floor in their house, because scorpions like to grab on to the bottom and sting you when you put the backpack on. By the way that scorpion story in Priesthood was sweet! That's awesome you guys saw Seth, I didn't notice him! Love ya dad! Have a great week!

Den- That's gonna be sweet when you're a Luchador for Halloween! You'll have to send me some pictures! Love ya Denny o! Have a great week!

Dig- Pres. Monson's talk on Agency was super sweet! That's cool that that was your favorite talk. Oh hey speaking of coconuts. There's tons of stands on the street here that sell coconuts, where they pop a whole in the coconut and squeeze some lime juice in it then stick a straw in. It looks pretty good but I've never tried it. Love ya Dig! Have a great week!

Shash- Your welcome for the package Slooshby. That's good that you love the kitty and the bracelet! Just think of me when you use them ok? That'll be cool when you're a witch for halloween! You'll have to send me pictures too ok? Love ya Shash! Have a great week!

Mom- The conference was sooo sweet! I loved Jeffery R Holland's talk too, because he talked about his mission and his parents! Just about all us missionaries were trying really hard not to get teary eyed at that part. I really can't even describe how thankful I am for what you and dad have done for me Mom. I love you both so much. That's funny that story you told me about sawyer. I can't believ sadie could be taller than me when I get home! weird. I've got a letter coming your way mom, it hasn't got there yet because it's longer than the rest. haha. Oh I attached the photos of Paco's baptism, and me at the soccer field where we played today. Pictures with me and Elder Ripley and Elder Garcia and Elder Aguilar 2, and some of me and Elder Newell. Love ya mom! Have a great week!

Nay- That's awesome you got to go to Gramp's church too! It's super neat huh? What other projects are you working on in Humanities? Did you do the movie one yet? That's crazy that it's been a year since Disney World. That was the funnest trip ever! It'd be way fun to go again someday with the fam. Ya I still have that picture of Pais right there on my desk. That was a funny story about her. Oh and no I've never heard of Guster. haha. I'll have to check it out in about a year and a half ish. haha. Love ya Nay, Have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar
Paco's Baptism

Playing Soccer
Elder Aguilar & Elder Newell

Monday, September 27, 2010

Hey Family! How is everybody? I hope you're all doing great! So this week has been pretty cool. We've got some work done and seen some miracles. Sweet.

This last Saturday, I had the opportunity to baptize Paco. He's the husband of one of the younger sisters in the ward. A couple weeks ago after we talked about missionary work with the members in sacrament, Paco and his wife came up to us and asked if we could come teach him. I don't think I've ever seen anybody quite so prepared for the gospel. He said he had begun to just feel good in sacrament meetings, and decided he really wanted to learn about the church. In the first lesson we brought a recent convert with us who shared a really strong testimony. We taught Paco the Restoration, and challenged him to read 3 Ne 11 and pray. The next time we came over he was just excited to learn more, and committed to be baptized. When the Zone leaders came over for the baptismal interview, Paco told them that he had a ton of questions and doubts about the church, but from the moment he knelt down and really prayed, he knew it was true, and he said that with that testimony from the Spirit, his doubts and questions just didn't really matter anymore. He was baptized Saturday and Confirmed Sunday. (I forgot my USB hookup for the camera but I'll send the pictures from his baptism next week.)

So about four months ago, Elder Moberg and I contacted a man that lives by one of our old investigators. He said that he'd welcome us anytime, but we just felt like he wasn't really sincere, and we sort of forgot about him. In the following weeks I saw him two or three times, and the Spirit just told me that I'd be teaching him someday. Then this last Wednesday, Elder Ripley and I were a little frustrated, unable to think of where to go in between appointments for about an hour and a half. Normally we just start contacting and everything's fine, but this time we just felt like there was something else we were supposed to do. We stopped by a gas station to use the bathroom, and I remembered that we happened to be right near that man's house. After Elder Ripley got out of the bathroom, I just told him I had an idea and started walking to the house where the man lives. The man answered the door, and I said "Hi, we're here to share you a message," he let us in, we talked for a little, found out his name is Petronilo, and we taught him about The Book of Mormon and the Gospel of Jesus Christ. At the end of the lesson he committed to be baptized. Then his wife got home and she said "if you two can fix that man's problems, I'll join your church too." Petronilo came to church yesterday even though he was a little sick, and he loved it. It was a pretty cool experience. Of coarse on the way to the next appointment Elder Ripley asked me how on earth I knew exactly what house to go to where a random man was ready to get baptized, so I explained to him the background of the whole situation.

I was thinking that I haven't really said much about my companion Elder Ripley. He's from Alabama. He was in the marching band at his school, plays the trombone (if that's how you spell it). He was also really big into choir, and drama. He actually won a state competition for drama one time with his friends, and was invited to nationals. He knows The Book of Mormon backward and front. I can actually open it to any verse and read it to him, and he'll tell me what book and chapter it's in. Crazy! Anyway that's a little about my companion. The other day he had a rough experience. There's these spiky catarpillars (once again I have no idea about the spelling) that hang on the leaves of some of the trees here so you have to be careful when you walk by trees on the sidewalk. Elder Ripley had one land in the collar of his shirt and sting him pretty bad, then right after that he almost stepped in some dog doodoo on the ground, but he missed it. When he looked up from the dog doodoo his face went right into the branch of a rose bush and he got a big scratch on his forehead. haha. I was laughing pretty hard.

So I was thinking about my experiences in the mission the other day (I'm still in my first area by the way, but there are changes in a couple weeks so hopefully I'll go somewhere new), and I recognized that every baptism we've had so far has either been a reference from a member, or somebody that contacted us. We've never baptised someone that we've contacted. The other day we were talking to an investigator at his work about the Book of Mormon. He said the reason he wanted to talk to us is because he saw the Book of Mormon, and recognized it from his friend's facebook page, because he's got a picture of him with the book with a caption that says "The book that changed my life." I was thinking about all of that stuff and I thought "Wow, there's not much that happens in missionary work if the members don't participate!" I never recognized how important it is to always set that good example for our friends and neighbors etc. and invite them to learn more about the gospel. Especially those who are going through alot of trials in their lives. It really is incredible to think that people go through such tough times, just wondering why they're even here living this life. They really need to know the purpose that the Lord has for us, and his Plan of Happiness. Missionary work is the bomb.

Well anyway, thank you all for all your support! I love hearing about stuff back home, especially the funny stories and stuff. I love you all! Have a great week!

Bam- I've been thinking about the birthday thing and I can't think of anything. :( It's tough to think of stuff I need as a missionary. haha. Maybe if you could send me some more investigators? haha. Just kidding. Thanks for all your dear elders and packages and stuff Bam. I love ya! have a great week!

Mom- Thanks for that Dear Elder that you had to write like ten times. I loved it! It was a great letter. Sorry I haven't written you a letter very recently, I'm sending one soon. And next thing ya know I'll be calling home for Christmas! That was funny the story you told me about Xander Humberg swinging his belt above his head in the Kindergarten reading thing. haha. You'll have to let me know how Merrill's campaign goes by the way. I haven't seen that picture in the Liahona you mentioned, but it sounds just like Guadalajara. :) Hey Cristobal Villegas wrote me a letter from the MTC, but now he's in the field and I don't know his address, could you maybe see if you could get it for me? Thanks! Oh I decided on a scripture for my other plaque, Doctrine and Covenants 112:19. I love that section. It's the one Elder Cook asked us to read when he came to the MTC. Well thanks for everything Mom. You're the greatest! Everyday I appreciate what a great example you are to me more and more, and I'm always more and more thankful for everything you've always done for me. Love ya mom! Have a great week! :)

Shash- That's so sweet you got to go to the Real Salt Lake game. The only time I ever went there they played the Guadalajara Chivas! Woohoo! haha. Ya know Shash, One of the notebooks mom sent me to use for writing letters has a talk in it that you wrote about missionary work. It's such a great talk! You have such a strong testimony Sloosh! I love ya! have a great week!

Den- I can't wait till you go to your first U game man! You're gonna love it so much! Those are like some of my greatest memories, going to the U games with Grandpa Bob. Sweet. Make sure you get a bratwurst with onions when you're there! They're the best! haha. Love ya denny-o! Have a great week!

Davin- Haha. That's funny about your parent teacher conference. Mine were always like that too, because they always do them at mid terms and my grades were always horrible at midterms. But by the end of the term they always ended up fine. I'm sure yours will too. Just work hard man! That's awesome about your art teacher! I'm still waitin on some of your sweet car drawings! Concept designs are sweet. I always loved looking them all up when the big car shows for the year started going around. Love ya dig! have a great week!

Dad- Your first lesson is on Isaiah! sheesh! That's gonna be crazy! Let me know how it goes and all the sweet stuff you teach. That's cool that you and Christian were talking about those old mission experiences. If you ever want to share some with me I'd really love it. I'm sure you were as great of a missionary as you are a dad and a hard worker. haha. Thanks for everything dad. (oh by the way I had to pay the bills for the house because nobody else had money, and the office doesn't have any money to reimberse with right now so I'm going to have to take out money from my home acount again but once they pay me back for the bills I'll be set for a while. Just to let ya know! Thanks Dad! Love ya! have a great week!

Nay- Sounds like homecoming was pretty sweet! Way to dress modest nay. That's so lame when teenagers discount the importance of virtue. It's not very fair to their future families either! That's awesome about Phillip. I remember those good old days when I was an aid in his class. He's a fun guy. haha. Hey maybe that will come true like you said and we'll end up going to the U together! Then we could go to the games together and stand in the student section! haha. Awesome. Well I sure love ya nay. Keep being such a great example for me and the fam. Have a great week!

I love you all!
Elder Dallas Robert Aguilar