Wednesday, January 27, 2016

January 27, 2016

 Sorry I didn't write on Monday. This week we were given permission to go to the temple. That means that we had to change our P-Day to the day we went to the temple. We chose to go on
Wednesday. We had to leave the house at 5:30 and we got to temple around 8:00. It was an awesome experience! Especially because it was in Spanish. I was able to understand almost all of it. There have been so many people that ask me how long I have lived here because I can speak pretty fluently. When I tell them five months they freak out and don't believe me and want an explanation on how I learned so fast. I just have to try and explain that it is the gift of tongues.

This week we did not have very many lessons because it was a weird week. We did divisions like twice and my companion had to go to the offices twice. The first time he went to the offices I stayed in my area and worked with Elder Barnett. We then met back up right before the food and went back to our own areas. The second time we did divisions I was with the district leader. He came to my area with me and my companion went to his area. It was a pretty neat day. I was able to put a baptism date with one of our investigators that we have. We also got him to commit to coming to church with us on Sunday. I also put a date with another one of our investigators and my companion said it was a really cool way that I did it. The lesson we had was super spiritual. Every scripture we read with her was perfect and she couldn't stop crying.The district leader did not like my area because it was a straight mountain. His area is a flat city. He also asked me to give a lesson in a zone meeting we had on Monday. It was about weekly planning. It had to be no less than ten minutes and weekly planning has 13 points. That meant I had to talk about each point in less than one minute. I went over time but they all said it was pretty good.
On Monday night we went to the offices and we ended up staying the night there. The next day my companion had to go to the immigration office and so that's why we stayed the night. We went and bought some Subway while we were there and it was amazing! The guys in the office are super funny and I think on one of our upcoming P-Days we are going to go shopping with them somewhere. On Tuesday we didn't get home until like 6 and we weren´t able to find many people to teach if any.
Next week we are going to be working super hard to find people to teach and figure out which investigators we have that are going to progress. Hopefully we can get our investigators to come to church again so they can progress. I hope I don't get sick this week because I just came back from the food and it was Chicharon in salsa verde. That is what I had last time when I got a stomach infection and the lady gave me a ton!!!
Well I hope everyone is doing good and has a great week!!
Love Elder Ivie


January 18, 2016

Volcano Erupting

My new area has been pretty amazing so far! I think almost every day we are able to find a new investigator. Almost every single person that we contact in the street says we can pass by and share a message. It is crazy! In all we have about 22 investigators. That is mostly from what we found in the streets in the last two weeks. Now what we have to do is go through them and find out which ones are actually going to progress. It is like mining and sifting through the dirt for things. We have to sift through our investigators because not all of them are going to progress. We hope they all will but it doesn't always work that way. We have investigators with all different kinds of backgrounds. We found one guy that was already a member, he has a new wife and she isn't baptized and neither are his kids. We plan on baptizing his entire family. We have some investigators that we have to help get married first so that they can be baptized, others that have addictions, others that don't understand our message. The hardest part is to get them to come to church. It is even harder now because we have ward meetings every Sunday before church so we cant pass by for any of the investigators. We will work something out. Almost all of the lessons here are really spiritual. We had one with a guy that was an alcoholic and he was telling us his whole life story. At the end of our lesson my companion gave the final prayer and the guy was just sitting in the chair crying for like 2 minutes before he finally said amen. It was really spiritual. We have had a bunch like that.  
Today we went to the center of the city. It is really cool there. You walk down the street and on both sides it is just store after store and then every once in a while it is a huge cathedral. One was actually opened and so we walked in and looked around. It was huge and looked really cool on the inside. We went through a couple of the stores and found a couple of sweaters and things that we liked that we bought. We then went to a Chinese buffet and celebrated my birthday. It was pretty fun. We also celebrated my birthday at the house by ordering pizza and watching Gods Army. It was a fun day. Hope everyone has another great week!
Love Elder Ivie


Monday, January 11, 2016

Week one in Ixtapaluca January 11, 2016

Had an awesome week here in Mexico! I am now serving in the new area that got opened up in our mission. It is called Ixtapaluca. A lot of people call it Bautisaluca because of all the baptisms they have here. And it is true... they have a ton! I am serving in an area called Ayotla. It is split up into 3
areas and we are in Ayotla 3. It is a mountain, and we have the upper part. The street are literally like 45 degrees. I don't know how they have cars driving on the streets here.

My companion is a Poly from Springs, Colorado. He has been in the mission for a year this week. He speaks English and also Spanish pretty fluently. We get along really good! He has a ukulele that he plays all the time and he sings really good! So that's usually what he does in the apartment. Our apartment is a lot smaller that my last one. This one is just one big room. My last house had like 4 different rooms. On Tuesday when we got to our new area we met with the missionaries that were in that area before. They stayed with us until Thursday to teach us a little bit about the area. Where all their investigators were and the members. We actually don't have any members in our area. There are a bunch of less actives but no active members. That means that whenever we have food we have to walk 30 minutes to the bottom of the mountain to go to members houses to eat. Then we have to walk all the way back up which is like 40 minutes.

We have been working really hard this week! We actually already had another baptism! Sort of... The Elders before us baptized a lady on Monday, then on Sunday we confirmed her. That means that she is our convert. We do all the paper work and all that stuff. When we report to the zone leaders they said that the baptism counts for our mission. Not only have we had one baptism but we have had a ton of other things happen. In the first two days we were able to set two baptism dates. In the first 5 days we got 8 new investigators. In my last area we couldn't do that in 6 weeks. We contacted 79 people and got 9 references from other missionaries and members. That is more than I think I have ever had before. Every night we reported our numbers to the zone leader.. because our district leaders phone doesn't have a signal, but every night we reported he said that our numbers were the best in the entire zone. The other night he reported to the assistants that we were the best companionship in the zone! It is a pretty great feeling to know how much they appreciate our work.
We had a meeting with the president before we left for our area and he told us that him and his wife had prayed for weeks on who to send to Ixtapaluca. He told us that he chose the missionaries that he believes he can trust and will be able to work under these hard circumstances. It is amazing that the president has that much trust in us, to send us to a new area that is really far away from him and an area that nobody knows.

In this new area there are so many kind people. There are some that will actually walk up to us and ask if we can come and talk to them. One day I wanted a drink so I walked into a store and bought a coke and some m&ms. When I was checking out we contacted the lady and she said we could share a message with her right there. So we shared the restoration. It was amazing! She kept rubbing her arms like she was cold and kept looking up like she was looking at someone. When I shared the first vision with her she started to cry and my companion was baring his testimony about Joseph Smith and he started to cry a little bit too! It was amazing how much you could feel the spirit! We got her to commit to baptism but haven't set a date yet. I am so excited to be in this area and meet all the new people.
I hope everyone is having a great new year so far!
Love Elder Ivie

Monday, January 4, 2016

Week 12- January 4th 2016

Photo sent through Facebook thanks Carmen Gayoso
The past week here in the mission has been really slow. All our numbers are really low. All of our investigators were either with family or on vacation and that's how it was with almost everyone here. We had a pretty good week though. On the 31st of December we went and ate at Dominos with our district leader and then went and had a lesson in a small town, then went and ate at the bishops house and watched them light off fireworks! It was really fun. The next day we couldn't leave the house until 12:00 for safety purposes and we only had three lessons and it was already 6:00. We then got a call from the zone leaders while we were in a lesson, and they said that we needed to return to the house because something happened in the mission. We still don't know what happened but I hope it wasn't anything really bad. We had permission from the President to watch a Disney movie until 12:00 so I bought Home on the Range at a store. It was nice to have a little break and watch a movie.

On Saturday we had a really crazy experience in a combi (van). We were just walking back to the main road after a lesson we had and we got into a combi. The back was all full so my companion sat up front with the driver and I was in the back. When the driver went to leave the shoulder of the road another combi came by and hit us. I didn't even feel it cause it was just a scrape but apparently it broke the mirror on the other van. The other driver stopped right in front of us so we couldn't drive around him and there were cars behind us. The guy walked up to the van we were in and started screaming and swearing and punching the van. He kept screaming saying ´´Your going to pay for a new mirror!´´ The driver of the combi we were in had rolled the window up and didn't say anything to him. The guy was trying to open the door to pull him out but it was locked. He then started to walk around to the side my companion was on and the driver was like ´´ Hurry lock the door!´´ My companion didn't know how so he just leaned forward and the driver reached over and locked it just in time before the guy could open the door and yank my companion out. He then came to the door that I was in and opened it up and started screaming. A lot of the people in the back started to get out and I just sat there. The guy couldn't do anything from the back because they have walls up between the back and the front compartment. You could smell alcohol and tell he was all drugged up. He walked back around to the drivers door and started punching the windows and pulled the mirror off the van and threw it on top of the car. The driver finally paid the guy 50 pesos which is like 3 or 4 dollars and the guy finally left. The whole time he had people waiting in his van too. It was a really crazy night. You never know what could happen cause at any moment he could pull out a gun or something.
Later that night we found out if we would be having changes or not. They told us that we both would be getting changed to a new area. My companion got a call from the President earlier in the week and told him that he would be the zone leader of Los Reyes. So he would be leaving but he still doesnt know what area. He just knows he is going to be staying in Los Reyes. I am going to have to take all my luggage to the Neza stake center which is where they have the changes. I have no idea where I am going to be moved to but I just know I am going to be moved to a new area. The area I am in right is going to be combined with the other area of Chapingo. The other Chapingo is huge. They told us that you could take a van for 1 hour and a half and then walk another 30 minutes and you are still in their area, and now that area is going to be combined with ours. It could be a mission all by itself because it is so big.
Sunday was a really neat day. It was a day to say goodbye to all the members. It was also testimony meeting so my companion and another Elder bore their testimonies. The last Elder that bore his, did a little bit in english. A lady sitting by me leaned over and asked, ´´Are you going to go up there and bare your testimony in engligh?´´ I told her that I probably would. So I walked up there and I told everyone that I also was going to be leaving to a new area. I could see a bunch of peoples faces go from a smile to a sad frown. I then told them that I would like to share a little of my testimony in english. As soon as I started speaking english the whole room got silent. My companion afterwards told me that a little boy in front of him said that it was the coolest thing ever. That Sunday was one to remember.
Hope everyone had a great Christmas and an amazing New Year.
Love Elder Ivie