Wednesday, December 9, 2015

2015-12-5 Who would say "pavo" when you could say "guajolote" instead?

[note:  as far as I (the non-Spanish-speaking mom) can tell...both of the words above mean "turkey." ;) ]

Ugh, writing's getting harder... I don't know what to say... Let's start with Thanksgiving.

Yes, I was able to celebrate Thanksgiving this year! I was not only reminded, but we had a really awesome lunch with the office missionaries and President Córdova's family (and a couple of other companionships that came in for various reasons and were invited to stay, and other maintenance, geneology, etc. workers that were invited as well. There was a lot of food, and I had pecan pie for the first time in a while. It was extremely satisfying! Thanks, Costco! And, especially, thank you to the Willinghams, the senior couple in the offices. You watch over us extremely well! They were the ones that staged and prepared the whole event. 

In other news, César and Lupe (& Co.) have gone both Sundays to church since we've met them, and they seem to be really happy! I love this family a lot, and I'm really glad we've been able to meet them. Due to some miracles (I haven't mentioned this yet, sorry--President Córdova has been telling us that this month will be a month of miracles, and so I've been trying hard to be worthy of them through work and faith) yesterday we were able to pass through a legal hurdle standing in the way of them two getting married, and so we're getting closer! Diciembre será un mes de milagros.

With Christmas approaching, we're also very busy in the offices. Getting ready for the zone conferences, preparing a couple of musical numbers for the ward Christmas dinner (Elder Gamboa, Elder Ribeiro, Elder Hackleman and I will be singing a couple of hymns with our ward mission leader, plus I'll be accompanying Elder Hackleman while he sings an arrangement of "O Holy Night." Not to mention I've been doing my best at playing Santa, trying to make sure everyone's Christmas packages get through customs, out of the post office, to the right address, and out of whatever other problem/hole they've managed to find their way into. I'm definitely learning a lot, that's for sure. 

Oh yeah! Don't forget to check out the website christmas.mormon.org. Or navidad.mormon.org. And then, after checking it out, share it! 

I know I'm not exactly consistent with sharing my ponderizing scriptures... Sorry, hehe. Here's my latest one:

"And now, verily, verily I say unto thee, put your trust in that Spirit which leadeth to do good--yea to do justly, to walk humbly, to judge righteously; and this is my Spirit.

Verily, verily I say unto you, I will impart unto you of my Spirit, which shall enlighten your mind, which shall fill your soul with joy;"

Always, but especially in these times approaching the day when we commemorate the birth of our Savior, we should put our trust in that Spirit. First, we may need to learn to recognize it. The Lord tells us how to do that. It's the one reminding us to do the right thing, to be humble, to see things how they really are, to discern, to be more like the Savior. If we've received that gift, the one that qualifies us for that companionship, and always when we do what we need to be doing, when we sincerely go looking for it, it'll be there. And then, once we've recognized that Spirit, we need to follow it. Find someone whose life you can bless. Lift up the hands that hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees. Help someone to discover, or rediscover, the Savior. It doesn't have to be through preaching. It doesn't even have to be through words. But once you've found that Spirit, spread it. It will fill your soul with joy, and the souls of all those with whom you come into contact. 

These are President Eyring's words:


I know that he can explain this much better than I can... Don't read it;  if you have the time, it's better to listen. And then after listening, set goals and act! He said that his purpose was "to increase [our] desire and [our] determination to claim the gift promised to each of us after we were baptized." I sustain this man as an apostle and prophet, and I testify that his words have helped me. 

Have a good week, everybody. I love you all.

Élder Rob Weatherford

P.Day Pictures...
... of Christmas tree sent in Christmas package.

... of Élder Weatherford with an old comp, Elder Anaya, whom he sent home that day. Knocked out his "best two years," now on to his "next mission." Ok, enough with the cliches...



... of Thanksgiving meal. Notice pie(s) in background. Notice smile on Elder Weatherford, Gamboa, and Ribeiro's face. Coincidence? I think not!


1. I don't know if you can see it very well... This is a kit of "ninjabread" my family sent me for Christmas. Hilarious holiday martial arts fun to ensue the P-day directly preceding Christmas. Pictures to follow...


2. Martinelli's! [I (Rob's mom) think this looks like a commercial for the Sparkling Cider company!]


3. President Córdova's daughter Pamela's whiteboard renderings of the office missionaries. 
[Note: On Elder Ribeiro's drawing, it says: You still owe me two Bubulubu's (Mexican candy). Don't pretend like you don't know what I'm talking about!] 


Élder Rob Waderfor

Friday, December 4, 2015

2015-11-21 Rain, rain, come back...



Shots of when we went running in the rain a few days ago... Really fun, and really wet! Our house is pretty near the beach, so most mornings we go out running alongside (not on, not along, alongside, hehe) the beach and stop at some exercise machines to work out. It's pretty nice, here, actually--along every such distance they put exercise apparatus (apparatuses? Really doubt it's "apparati"...) for anybody that wants to use them, like mini-parks they outfit for public health. Set-ups for sit-ups, pull-ups, squats, etc. We have an amazing view of the lighthouse on Sacrifice Island (if you were to guess why it was named that, you'd probably be right), and of course the sunrise as well. No complaints about the scenery!

This week we actually found a family to teach... they're former investigators, and the couple isn't married yet (what else is new in Veracruz?), but they seem super receptive. It appears they were dropped before because they had a hard time keeping their commitments, but it seems like the Lord's been working in the missionaries' absence, so I'm really hoping they'll be ready for us this time! The couple's names are César and Lupita, and they have four young children, ages 10, 6, 4, and 2. They're a handful to teach together, but they're super cute and the oldest, Gabi, is extremely bright (all of them, really, of course, but it's a bit more obvious in the ten-year-old, being older, than in the two-year-old :)). I don't want to get my hopes up, because there have been disappointments in the past, but I always have to remind myself that even if it hurts, if I don't get emotionally involved I won't be able to help them as well. And really, you (or, at least, I) can never help it. We just found them this week so we're in the early stages of teaching, but if you could pray for César and Lupita, I'd really appreciate it. 

Transfers are happening this coming week, so we'll be sending off two separate groups of missionaries and receiving a new batch fresh from the MTC. My comp has a few things he has to do but I'm the one who gets the brunt of the work when transfers come by, so it's been and will be a pretty full week. Not to mention the Christmas zone conferences that will be rolling around pretty soon... But with firm investigators we're looking forward to more effective teaching this week as well!

Oh, yeah, and it'll be Thanksgiving next week... To be honest, the holidays really pass me by here, at least the American ones. I don't think I even remembered about Thanksgiving last year until it was done. But this time we have four gringos in the offices (and a Mexican and a Brazilian), so maybe we'll actually do something to celebrate! Update on that next week...

Stay strong, stay safe, stay true, stay... right there, right like that until I get back. Stop changing so much. 

Con amor,


Élder Rob Weatherford

2015-11-14 One more funny thing...


Elder Lind wanted photos with the clown on the wall. Funny story... that same day, there was a Youth Conference starting in the Tuxtepec stake, and even though it wasn't the stake center it was being hosted in Tuxtepec. A couple weeks later, after a stake conference, we were talking with a youth about the youth conference, and he happens to mention that the stake president gave him a ride there (our building's a little far out from his ward). He said that while they were driving, they passed two missionaries taking photos with a giant clown on a wall. He said that the stake president turned to him and said, "Just look at our hard-working missionaries."


*Awkward*

"Yup," we told him.  "That was us."  
[Author's note: Just so we're clear, we must have spent about 20 seconds taking those photos. And at that exact moment, the stake president drives by. That made my top ten most awkward moments in the mission, only made better by the fact that the stake president didn't tell us that himself...]

2015-11-14 MORE Animals...and something MORE important!

I mentioned the day we cleaned turtles, right? Not to eat... they were pets!

 

Here we are playing around after a Moctezuma ward open house with a prop our mission leader made for our room exhibit. Bottom photo features me and Elder Reyes, from another area in the Tuxtepec district.