Sunday, May 29, 2011

May 10, 2011

With Elder Ochoa right before transfer meeting.



May 10, 2011

Querida familia,

First off, Happy Mother's Day! (So, in Mexico Mother's Day is always May 10th, not the 2nd Sunday. Happy Mexican Mother's Day!).

So, this week has definitely been eventful. I was transferred last Tuesday to a different area within the San Clemente 3rd ward. They decided to split the ward (which covers the entire San Clemente stake) and make it 3 proselyting areas instead of 2. So, there are now sister missionaries in San Clemente, Elder Ochoa is with the new district leader in Dana Point, and I am in San Juan Capistrano (which apparently is famous for its swallows, a fact that I seem to have missed out on growing up) with Elder Carey (who I actually met before my mission at BYU). I was also called to be one of the San Clemente zone leaders. This means I get a full-time car for the summer, but unfortunately that means I will have to work really hard to not get "plump" with all the tortillas that we eat.

We got to go to the Newport Beach Temple this morning. It was great. It was definitely small in comparison to the rest of the temples I have been to (Provo, Washington D.C., Salt Lake City, and San Diego), but it was really nice. The ordinance rooms have murals on the walls and the whole building has dark red wood trim.

I love the area here in San Juan Capistrano, though. We have a lot of super rich houses in our area, but 80% of our work is in a little neighborhood next to the Catholic mission known as "La Zanja", where everyone is Mexican. It's awesome. We are working hard to get 3 teenage girls and their mom ready to be baptized, hopefully in about a week and a half, and we just found an amazing couple who we started teaching. They were taught about a year ago and the wife wanted to get baptized (the husband was indifferent), but they were dropped because the wife had a baby and was super busy all the time. We called them and set up an appointment, and they loved it. They said they think that it's their time to join a church, so of course we were more than happy to assist. They should be coming to church this Sunday.

Well, that's about all for this week. Hope you enjoy the pictures!

Sincerely,

Elder Gibbons




May 3, 2011

We have literally seen the windows of heaven pour out blessings we had never imagined from working more with the members. In the last 3 days, we have set 4 solid baptismal dates. One was with Giovani, who in his prayer after the lesson thanked Heavenly Father for letting him know that the Book of Mormon is true and that what we have taught him comes from heaven.
The second was with Javier and Carolina, a couple who we met through a sister in our ward. They both came to Church and loved it (Javier, who works on Sundays, announced to us that he was going to ask for Sundays off so he could go all three hours...without us teaching, inviting, or even suggesting that he do anything of the sort). In the lesson when we invited them to be baptized, Carolina actually beat us to the punch and invited Javier to be baptized, and when he said "Yes" she asked him, "When?" It was amazing. The members here have been so great with them too. We wanted to talk to them after sacrament on Sunday, but a member family beat us to them and talked for almost half an hour (making them late for class, but it was so worth it).
The last was with Augustine, the guy who came to Church on his own after we invited him on the street. In Sunday school, the teacher asked him what his name was, and asked "Is this your first Sunday here?" And he said, "No, this is my third time." And the teacher said, "I don't remember seeing you." Me and Elder Ochoa were scared that he would be offended or something, but he responded with, "Well, that's because this is the first Sunday that I have worn glasses." It was so funny.

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