Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Miracles!

Hi everyone. We had a wonderful phone call with Scott yesterday. He says he has put on 20 pounds -- but he looked great. He's the same old funny, happy Scott! He has not lost his sense of humor - or his sweet spirit. Gotta love the kid! Sounds like he had a great Christmas. The baptism he talks about in his e-mail is the couple he had helped get married a month or so ago. The children had been baptized this past month w/other family members (cousins/aunt). He sure appreciates all the love and support he gets from each of you. Thanks to all. Sure love you. Happy Holidays. ......Carolann

Well I just talked to you all on the phone, which was an amazing experience for me, and i want to tell you all how much i love you! I hope it was as much fun for you as it was for me, and i want you all to know how much i missed you. I do have to say, though, that my christmas here was a pretty sweet one as well!

Well i will just give a brief little summary of what we did here, for all of the people i didnt get to talk to! On Christmas Eve we went to the Castillos house to eat dinner and to open presents and what not. They got me a sick Cruz Azul soccer jersey that i just love! After dinner, i made cookies to take to our various investigators and recent converts that didnt have too much money. We customized little stockings for all of the kids and bought them all little gifts that were all cutely wrapped. I gotta admit i got pretty creative with them! haha. We also took a whole dinner over to a recent convert's house who doesnt really have any money, and they really appreciated it as well. The spirit i felt was really amazing and it was a Christmas i will never forget!

Well then on Christmas Sunday the miracles continued. We baptized Jazmin and Antonio and the were so happy. It was so awesome to see how far their relationship has come along. They truly are happy and so grateful for all of the blessings that have come from being baptized. They were then confirmed in church and it was amazing. I guess you could say it was a "white" christmas after all! And then i got to talk to the family back home! It was really a great Christmas, and i wish every one of you a merry christmas and happy new year. I hope that everything is perfect for you all. Mexico is dope and i am loving it. We had changes a few days ago and I willl be staying here in Queretaro for at least another change, which is probably a good thing because i have tons of investigators that i need to prepare to enter the temple in a year! Well, I hope that Santa brought everything that you all wanted! He sure brought me the happiness i was waiting for!!!! I love you all so much!

Elder Holmes

P.S. Here are some photos, most of them are pretty self explanatory, so i will only explain a few:

The Santa photo, and the group photo, are when we went Christmas caroling to Jazmin, Antonio and their family, with the Castillos.

The one with me and justin bieber is in the houses of some of our investigators. They love justin so much and i always joke around with everyone how i am a bieber boy and have the bieber fever! SO one of the families actually gave me Bieber's christmas cd, which i obviously cant listen to, so i regifted it to them and they almost peed their pants they were so happy! haha.

And the final pic is of the baptism which was great! Hope you like them!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Feliz Navidad a mis Queridos!

Well hi everyone. Man I am so sorry to hear about what happened to Nicky Chilton! I hope that everthing is ok and please send my love his way!

This week was pretty great! Yeah, israel did get baptized and it was another great experience. After the baptism, he was telling me how he was thinking of going on a mission after he has been a member for a year. That kind of stuff makes me feel so amazing. There is NOTHING like seeing the church absolutely change peoples lives!! So that was good. Another highlight of our week was a family that came to church with us yesterday. The Dad is always drinking and smoking when we teach him and is quite the character, but his family is really legit. All of the fam came to church, but then only the mom and the 17 year old son stayed for the rest of the meetings. Each Sunday we always have to report all our numbers and what not, so after about 30 minutes of that, I went to the gospel principles class where the mom was. I found out that they didn't have a teacher for the class. The only people that were in there were Jazmin, Ruth, and Yolanda. They said "don't worry elder holmes. We have been having a good talk about how the church has changed our lives. We have shared our testimonies with her, and she really wants to get baptized!" Amazing! I was like WOW there is always a reason for the way things happen, and this was an answer to our prayers. Sara, the mom, felt so good in the church, and my three most recent converts were our best fellowshippers! haha. So after i heard this, we pulled sara and her son into another room and set a baptismal date for the first of january! It will be a little tough to bring up the palabra de sabiduria with them, but they love having us in the house and they loved going to church, so we will see how they progress.

Jazmin and Antonio are still planning on getting baptized this sunday, so that will be another amazing experience. Well cambios are coming up and i am in that time period where i could definitely be leaving, but i get the feeling that i will stay one more change. The people here in the ward are really awesome and they are always giving us different things and are just so nice to us. On friday, we had the ward christmas party and it was also a pretty good success. Except for the fact that it was a little bit different from the ones we have back home.

Well that is about it. Anything else that needs to be said, i will just tell you next week over the phone, which is just awesome! I hope everyone has a very Merry Christmas! I will for sure miss you all and the great traditions and fun things we do during the holidays, but I think we will have an amazing Christmas. Love you all!

Elder Holmes

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Everything is Just Dandy!

What is up family!!

Well so everything is going just dandy for me down here in Mexico! To start off, feliz cumpleanos a Marisa hoy!! Espero que su dia sea perfecto!! Te quiero Marisa. I thought i would put that in spanish as i know she always loved trying to speak spanish to me even when i didn't understand! haha. Also happy birthday to Auntie Susan. Sure do miss the dinners up at your house! Miguel as well on wednesday! and big Anthony Winters on friday! I sure do love you all and miss you all a bunch!!

Also dad i have to say that i still haven't sent the package! the castillo family had some problems sending it and we tried to go today but they didn't know where it was, so i will try my hardest to get it out this week and send it express even though it might be a little pricy! haha. Also mom, well as you know i am cleansing the stomach but you only sent me enough supplies for half of the cleansing process, so i dont know when you could send me the other half! Everything still itches like crazy and i am pretty sure that i still have little worms all up in my stomach!!

Well this week turned out much better than it seemed like it was going to. As you know, we had the confirmations on Sunday of the four who got baptized. Well satan worked really hard on our recent converts. On Thursday night we went over to Sandra and Kendra's house to find out that someone had hit Sandra with their car as she was walking!! Not surprising at all though as they are the worst drivers ever!! haha. And then Ruth got in a huge fight with everyone and left with her kids to go live with her mom! Then Geovana is pregnant and has been getting sick a lot! But some how we got all 4 of them confirmed on Sunday! We haven't been finding too many new people except for this one 18 year old kid named israel, who was my little miracle of the week. We met with him on tuesday and his first question was, what do i need to do to be a member of the church! I was like well i can fill up the font real fast if you want! haha. But seriously, things with him have really been progressing perfectly and he should get baptized this Sunday. His mom isn't a member and isn't too good with the idea, but I know that he will surely be rewarded for his faith!

So today we went downtown as a zone because elder Gleave is going home this week! I am sure going to miss him! He was an awesome guy and a great friend! He hooked me up with a bunch of sick ties! haha. Oh yeah and today is the Dia de Guadalupe. Everyone goes nuts carrying all of their virgin statues down the street and lighting off these really annoying fireworks like every ten seconds! you have got to love that!

And mom, as for your question, we are going to Walmart today and we are going to buy 2 or 3 big dinners for 3 families in the ward. The dinner has like everything and one of the ladies in the ward Hermana Meza gave us this idea. One is for a recent convert who is named Silvia, who has a bunch of little kids and don't have much, but they are always so nice to us. Then there are two young people named Eduardo and Guadalupe who are about to lose there house because they have no money, and the castillo family. They never show it but i guess that they are really struggling. They are always so nice to us and i love them so much. We are in the process of buying little presents for all of them as well! it should be an amazing christmas. As for the phone call, we are going to be in the Mezas house to call and they have skype so it will be awesome. They said it is free to call a home so i will just hit you guys up on christmas. i dont know what time but get excited! haha. Our mission numbers aren't looking great but our area is looking awesome! I love the work and am receiving so many blessings it isn't even funny. We had entrevistas with presidente this week as well, which was really good, and he gave us all some good advice!

Well not much else! love you all!

Elder Holmes

Another Great Week for Baptisms!

(This is Scott's letter from December 5th.) Well I have a lot to write and a little time as usual. The week was another great one for baptisms, but it was really tough during the week in finding new investigators and what not. We baptized Yovana, Sandra, Kenia, and Ruth. Jazmine and Antonio have a baptismal date for Christmas so I hope that they will progress towards that. I will send pictures of the baptisms. I had the opportunity to baptize Ruth and Sandra and my comp baptized Kenia and then a member baptized Yovana so that was also way fun. We had a bunch of people there for the baptism, which was awesome.

Anyways, I had an amazing experience this week with the scriptures. On monday i had some really frustrating feelings and thoughts going through my mind. It was a really rough time and I really didn’t know what to do. So Tuesday morning for my personal study, I sat down and said a little prayer. In the prayer I put all my faith in my Heavenly Father and told him that I was going to set my Book of Mormon on the table and let it fall open to one of the pages. I then said in my prayer that I was only going to read the left page and then apply whatever it told me into my life. Well it was amazing. I found something that talked really direct and I received my answer from God. What I was able to take out of it was that I needed to talk to someone to ask for advice. I ended up talking to President just over the phone and he gave me so much comfort and helped me resolve all my negative thoughts and feelings. I knew this was a direct answer from my Heavenly Father. I have never felt more free in my thoughts, or felt so good about what i am doing. I know that the scriptures have this amazing power and the only thing that we need to do is read them and then apply what they say. If we only read and forget to apply, we won’t receive the blessings from the Lord, like many of my investigators I have seen!

So like I said it, was a little bit tough this week in finding people! We worked our tails off trying to find people but we found nothing. We had two that were supposed to come to church, but they bailed on us Sunday morning, so that was a little tough, as well. My comp and I are having a lot of fun though mom opening the little presents that you sent to us. And about the call on Christmas. I talked to one of the sisters in our ward and she said that we could go to her house and use the phone there. So that’s what we will be doing. Also thanks a lot for the stomach stuff. I have officially started my cleansing process! haha. And Raul loved the candies and already ate all of them! I am having so much fun with the people here and they are all extremely nice to me. RIght now i am pretty pumped up. What could be better in my life? This is the only true church on the face of this earth and i have the opportunity to share a message that has completely changed my life with all of the people here in Mexico. I Love my Father in Heaven and I know that he will give us the help we need as long as we are doing the right things and praying!! I hope the week went well for everyone!!
Elder Holmes