Monday, March 28, 2011

Hey Fam!

How is everybody? This letter might be kind of short because the letter to the president page froze while I was writing my letter to the president, so I'm going to have to write him again. This week has gone well. Last night were transfers, and every companionship in the zone except mine and that of the zone leaders was changed. We'll be recieving another newby in the house that will be trained by Elder Petersen.

This week we've been focusing alot on the people who seem to be especially prepared by the Lord. We're teaching a lady named Carina that is a single mother who has passed through alot of abuse in her life, but somehow remains very possitive. Inside she's really hurting and is ready for a change, the best part is she is looking for a change, and knows that the Savior is the source she needs to go to. It's neat to see her regain hope in this life.

We're also teaching a guy named Angel who's father recently passed away. Angel is in his mid thirties and is single. He's had a pretty good life, because his dad was pretty wealthy and had pretty strict rules for his kids, so he learned how to be obedient, and has always had everything he needs to live comfortably, and it's neat to see that he too recognizes his need to come unto Christ.

I've been studying alot about the Atonement this week, and I've really felt my testimony grow. I feel much closer to my Savior, and have come to better recognize my responsibility in this life, and all that I need to do to be able to do my part and recieve the help from His sacrifice, that I'll need to be able to recieve life eternal. I'm just thankful for Heavenly Father's plan for us, and I grow in desire as I strive to keep an eye single to the glory of God.

Dig- That's sweet that soccer is starting back up man. You'll have to let me know how it goes. Here's a soccer tip for when you're practicing technique by the way... Anything worth doing, is worth doing poorly at first. haha. I had a companion that said that, and it's really true! Love ya! Have a great week!

Den- That's too bad about your contentious sleep over. Oh well. Way to make that hot pocket for shash man. You should always treat your sisters like princesses! haha. Love ya! Have a great week!

Nay- That's awesome you got into that program! Your career is more set than mine now! I still don't even know what it's going to be. Lucky that you get to go to Florida, that was a blast when we went there for Disney World. Love ya! Have a great week!

Shash- That's too bad you were getting sick shash! Hope you get well soon. Love ya! Have a great week!

Dad- Thanks for those tips about remembering the basics. By small and simple things great things are brought to pass. I think that really applies in every aspect of the gospel. Love ya! Have a great week!

Mom- I'm going from here to send the package home finally. I'm including letters for various family members, and for Brother Lauber. By the way could you let Bam know that if she wants to she can send me e mails, I just can't reply. She mentioned something about that in her last dearelder. Elder Petersen lives in the house with me. We've actually become pretty good friends over the past while. He's a way good guy. About what you said about you're e mails. I always love hearing the little stuff about what's going on at home. haha. It helps me remember who I am and why I'm here, it helps me develope a more solid personality, and it helps me to be humble. I sure love ya mom! Love ya! Have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Aguilar

Monday, March 21, 2011

Hey Family!

How is everyone? I've been doing really well. This week has gone great. The Lord's been working alot of miracles in our area, and it's awesome. I really am amazed when I think about the amount of Spiritual experiences we've had in our lessons this past week. It's amazing to see so many of the Lord's children being touched by the Spirit, and recognizing the truth of His gospel. It's awesome to see the changes made in their lives, and I'm thankful to be a part of it.

This week Elder Jaen (one of the Assistants) came to work with us for a day, to see how my comp has been doing in his first moments of the mission. Everything went well, and we learned alot from Elder Jaen about how to find people who are ready for the gospel more easily. It's really just like we read in the scriptures, it's best if we're just clear and direct. Anyway, Elder Jaen said he's very impressed with Elder Cardona, and that he has more potential as a missionary than almost any other missionary he's met. I seem to have been blessed with great companions in my mission so far, which is good, they've helped me to improve alot with their examples.

The other day we were knocking on doors, and we taught a lady who's recently been going through a divorce with an abusive husband. They have like an eleven year old daughter, and the Mom doesn't recieve any support at all from her now ex husband, so she works alot to take care of her daughter. The lesson was very spiritual, and at the end she expressed through her tears, her great desire to feel peace, and leave behind her past life. We assured her it will be done, as she puts her faith in the Savior, and allows His Atonement to take an affect in her life. We taught her for the first time on Saturday, and the next day she was right there at church! Awesome.

A little while ago, I had the privilege to baptize a nine year old boy named Francisco. His oldest sister decided recently that she also wants to be baptized, and just recieved permission from her parents. It's neat to see the impact Francisco's example is having on his family.

Well I'd love to write more, but we're running low on time...

Mom- I got your dear elders. Thanks for the updates on all the stuff in the fam. Thanks for letting me know of the "hi"s from the old ward members, haha. Good old JN 1st. Love you Mom! Have a great week!

Dad- That's interesting what they talked about with assignments etc. It kind of helps me to have a better view on mission leadership assignments too. Have a nice trip in ATL. Love you Dad! Have a great week!

Dig- Church Ball sounds just like on the movie man! haha. You bought Age of Empires again? Sweet. If we keep losing it, we'll be the main reason those guys are making money off of that game. haha. Love ya Dig! Have a great week!

Den- Sounds like your football skills are super! Sweet man. That's really true what you learned about reading and praying in church Den. It's sooooo important! Love you Den! Have a great week!

Shash- Sounds like you learned alot of great stuff in church shash! I'm sure seeing all the cousins at Bam's was a blast too! Love you Shash! Have a great week!

Nay- Is that slide show for Humanities? I did mine on people with long term diseases. Like lepers. Sounds like the Showcase with Phillip was a blast. haha. That's kind of funny about you and Marquie's dance. That's like something that would be on a movie. Love you Nay! Have a great week!

Elder Aguilar

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

14 Months!

Hey Fam!
How is everyone? This week has gone well. We've seen alot of progress in the area, and in the companionship. I've seen my comp grow alot, and he's looking like he's shaping up to be a pretty great missionary.
We had interviews at the start of the week, and the assistants just called us and asked us to come to the lobby of the hotel that them and the President would be staying at to have the interviews there in a little conference room. We were the second to last interviews, and when we got there President just said, "well, I'm starving, let's eat." He then bought dinner for my companionship, the companionship that lives with us, and Elder Moberg at the Holliday Inn restaurant, and we just talked over dinner about the work, and he gave us some pretty awesome advice. It was a pretty cool experience to just relax a little and talk a little more casually with President about what we need to do to improve in the work and stuff.

This week we've been able to find some pretty cool new people. They've been accepting baptismal dates and reading their copies of the Book of Mormon, which is great, because I feel like it's been a while since we've been able to have a handful of real progressing investigators that seem prepared for the gospel.

Today for P day we went and visited the skinniest house in the world. My comp and I came across it while we were knocking doors. It's pretty cool.

Sorry this letter's a little short, I'm running kind of low on time.

Mom- All my mail got here! haha. It was awesome to get the packages. Tell Gram I said thanks for the treats and the books. I've been wanting that pictures of the scriptures book for ever to be able to use it in lessons, it'll be awesome! And Bam's package was loaded! I've already been chowin down on ramen and mac n cheese and the candy she sent. My contacts and shoes got here just fine by the way. I included some pictures of my other worn out pair of shoes, and my worn out grey slacks. Also the pictures from our tour in the skinniest house in the world with Elder Petersen and my comp (Nobody lives there anymore), pictures from when we went bowling back when Elder Walker was here (Elder Ricks is in those ones) and one of me cutting my hair this morning, haha. That's funny that you mentioned that about Bro. Lauber, because just this morning I finally wrote a letter for him. I'm sending a handful of letters in the package I'm sending home to save a little cash. Thanks for the words about obedience. That's what I'll be talking about in the district meeting today. It's really incredible the joy and the blessings that come from obedience, and there's always a way to improve in that aspect. Well I love ya mom. I miss ya. But like you said, only eight more weeks till the phone call! Love ya! Have a great week!

Den- Sounds like you had an all around super week man. You dominated at everything! cool. haha. Love ya! Have a great week!

Dad- Thanks for letting me know about Persie. Other than that how's she doin? About your comments about the time, I feel like it's going by too fast, and I'm just trying to do what I can to take advantage of the time that remains. It seems like some days go by in a flash and I just want there to be a couple more hours to work a little more. haha. But anyway. Love ya! Have a great week!

Nay- That tea party place sounds sweet. It's too bad turkish delight isn't good. haha. An avocado tree looks about like a maple tree. About the same size too. They grow TONS of avocados. haha. A family that has an avocado tree will have a hard time going hungry. Love ya! Have a great week!

Dig- That stinks that your day got canceled man. Oh well, don't worry, this week can be the best week ever! haha. Love ya! Have a great week!

Shash- That's awesome that you're getting soccer started up, and that you're improving well! Let me know how things go with games and stuff! Love ya! Have a great week!

Love you all!
Elder Aguilar

Bowling on P-Day
I love this one :)
The skinniest house in the world
The Hardings should live in this house
Inside the skinny house
Skinny Elder Aguilar in the skinny house
Wearing out another pair of shoes
From miles and miles of walking
I'd better get him some more pants too!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Hey Fam!!!
How is everybody? This week has been good. We've seemed to have some curse lifted off our area, because it'd been forever since we'd been able to just knock on some doors and find people who were ready to hear the message of the Restored Gospel, but this week we almost didn't even have time to contact because everyone was inviting us in to teach them. I feel pretty good about the changes. I started to realize this week that I'd forgotten alot of the things that I used to do when I first got into the mission, and I figured it might have something to do with why we're not seeing much results. I started to put into practice once again things as simple as just praying before each contact that the Spirit will testify, listening to what people are really saying, and going the extra mile with all the little things we do in the work.
On Sunday we actually found a lady and her daughter who listened to the message on their doorstep, and were excited by what they felt and heard. It'd been a while since the last time I was able to just rely on the Spirit and watch someone understand the things we were teaching, without having to re-explain things or even start to convince them a little bit about the message. Lesson learned - The Holy Ghost, a member of the Godhead is a better teacher than I am... haha. Took me long enough to figure that one out. That's one of the things I love most about the gospel, it's not complicated.
So things with the new companionship are going well. We've begun to understand each other a little better. We're both focused on being obedient, and just doing the Lord's will, so that makes things a little easier. I don't know if I mentioned before that my comp wants to be a chef when he grows up, so I'll have to get him to teach me some sweet stuff.
The family that went walking to church on their own last week ended up not progressing very well. The mother of Eduardo (the husband) began to brain wash them a little, and convinced them that since the Book of Mormon doesn't say anything about the Virgen Guadalupe or any of the Saints that they worship, it must not be true. After talking to them again they were able to recognize that that's defenitely not a legitimate way to find out if something is from the Lord or not, but I think that mostly to avoid family conflicts, they've opted to not listen anymore. 
This week, an avocado forest in our area burned down. I don't know why the fire department didn't come to put the fire out, but there was smoke everywhere, and we actually had to take a route to an appointment that went right by the fire, and were walking down a street that was about ten yards away from the flame. It was pretty scary, but it was kind of cool at the same time. 
Our area is the smallest one in the zone, and it's been a little frustrating trying to find new people, since we've knocked on almost every door in the entire area already, but on Sunday we found a neighborhood that doesn't appear on the map, so it's going to be cool looking for new investigators there.
Mom- I told you last week I think that that picture at the temple wasn't my zone, but then I looked back at it, and actually it is my zone. The large group one is of our zone, and the smaller group pictures are of me with Elders that I served with in Guadalajara. I went to send you and dad's package today, but they recently passed a law or something that you have to bring proof that you live at the return address when you send a package, so I'll have to send it next week. That means the return address won't be the address of the mission offices, but the address of our house. We're not supposed to recieve mail at our house address, so for mail in the future the address will still be just for the mission home of course. My mail has all arrived, Elder Aguilar 2 let me know this morning, and the President is coming on Friday to Uruapan for interviews, so he'll be bringing the mail with him. I love you mom! have a great week!
Shash- I've actually not had any cinnamon tortillas here. The tortillas are kind of different, they're made out of white corn, so they don't really work with sweet stuff. haha. That's awesome that you got the new American Girl Doll! And fifty cents! Holy cow! haha. Love ya Sloosh! have a great week!
Dad- That's pretty cool about the interviews in the home thing. I guess that sort of organization works just as perfectly in the home as it does in the church. Thanks for your testimony Dad, It always helps. Love you Dad! have a great week!
Dig- You should write one of those poems in your e mail to me man! haha. Sounds like that zebra picture was sweet. Love ya Dig! have a great week!
Nay- So are you for sure decided on Utah State now? Sounds like Prom will be fun. That's a sweet story about the guy named Green, haha. Maybe he knows Mr. Duignan. haha. Love ya Nay! have a great week!
Den- That's sweet that you guys got to stand up in the conference man! haha. I always loved that in the MTC too when one of the speakers would invite us to stand up and move around a little. That's sweet you got to eat so much pie too! They're not really into pie down here, so I miss it alot. haha. My companion doesn't even know what pumpkin pie is! Anyway, Love ya denny o! have a great week!
Love you all!
Elder Aguilar