Monday, March 21, 2011

March 21, 2011

Well another week! It’s been really hectic but can’t complain because there has been success too. This week on Sunday we had the baptism of the two kids from Telchaquillo and this week we had two baptisms on Wednesday. The baptismal service was supposed to start at four but we didn’t start until 5. Oh well.
At the beginning of the week we found a guy while we were tracting. His wife had died a month ago and he was home alone. He’s really humble in his house. He doesn’t have any chairs. One of the crazy things about this guy is that his hands are huge! Especially for a Mexican they normally have smaller hands especially if they are from Mayan descendants. But when we got in his house we taught the Plan of Salvation and he said that that was more or less what he already believed. However, his wife when she was in her last few months said to him that he should find a religion and take care of their daughter. When invited him to be baptized, he accepted and we helped him to understand that in order to be married and live in the celestial kingdom, he has to be baptized first. It was the first step. He’s a pretty cool guy. He really misses company.
Another person that’s really progressing is the daughter of Maria. Her name is Guadalupe. Last week I wrote about her success story and how she is already starting her testimony. She is in First Nephi chapter 10 or so. Also she went to church. So she’s really progressing. A few more weeks and she’ll be baptized (April 9th). Basically anything that we teach her she keeps eating it up. Also when we read and explained First Nephi 8 and the tree of life with her, she said that she had a friend that she talks with at school that she might be able to talk into coming to a lesson. Who knows how many people will be blessed because of one door knocked. The problem is that you just got to know which ones to knock. And if you don’t you gotta knock all of them.
Also (the area where we are working in is more of a humble area). We found a 12 year old kid who had been baptized about six months ago. The coolest thing with him is that he is a good kid on his own. Normally if you leave the kids to be their own boss here, they do what they want. His mom works a lot. She leaves at 7 in the morning and gets back at about 10 (or so she says). We are going to have another lesson on Saturday with her and a neighbor. Things are going great. Sometimes the people in the mission give me a rough time but that’s the fault of the people not the mission.
Oh yeah, we changed bishopric here too. So we got to get them use to what we do. The old first councilor is now the bishop, the elder’s quorum president is now the first councilor and the second councilor was a high councilor. It should be a pretty good bishopric.
Well don’t have a whole lot to say this week. My companion and I get along good. Even though we are from totally different places we still have the same goal. And that is to build The Kingdom here on the earth. It’s been a pretty crazy week but its all going by way too fast. I can’t believe its pday again. I hope that all is well and that you all are doing well. I wouldn’t know from some of you because I haven’t heard in a while “HINT, HINT”. Love you all, take care and do what is right
Con Amor,
Elder Mackay
Just from the baptism of Maria de Jesus and her daughter Aurora. Oh yeah, the third one, can you tell which one is the white boy?

Monday, March 14, 2011

March 14, 2011

Well it’s been a long week, but again a short week. Just like time in the mission it’s really hard to describe how it all works. This is the first week with my new companion and it has been a stretch. Not only do I have to show him where everything is and how everything works in our area, but also it all has to be in Spanish. It’s a little bit challenging, but he understands the language barrier. It’s really nice to have a patient companion. I can’t imagine what it would be like with a companion who isn’t.
This week has been full of ups and downs. The ups are that we had a baptism! (That was also the cause for a lot of headache). It was Sunday at about 1:30 (scheduled to start at 1). It was two kids from Telchaquillo that just basically said, “Hey missionaries, baptize me!” The blessings of doing what you’re suppose to I’d guess. They had a lot of faith in us though. They were super excited though. During the program I talked on the importance of baptism and then my companion talked about persevering until the end. Then one of the sisters from Telchaquillo bore her testimony. It was really strong. Next was a little problem with the water. We had the water in there before all set up. The younger kid just barely turned eight and is way short. He comes up about to my waist (going to include pictures). The water would have been about up to his neck if we just put him in on his own and we couldn’t pump out any water because the pump is broken. So we put a little chair in there for him to stand on. He wasn’t too confident about walking out to the chair on his own so I put the chair down and carried him out to it. (Just a little side note: That little kid is a way cool little kid. Even though he doesn’t understand everything, he knows that this is what Heavenly Father wants of him. During the program he was teaching his dad how to sing, “I am a Child of God”. That was one of the songs that I helped him to sing one time. Take a picture with your heart). Any way, then was the older boy. Just before the baptism he was looking at his parents on the front row like, “Come on guys get in here already.” He is twelve and is super grown up for his age. The next Sunday I’m going to go to Telchaquillo for their confirmations.
The other big thing that is progressing right now is Maria de Jesus and her family. She did have a problem with the Law of Chastity to start out with (three weeks ago or so, I don’t remember if I’ve ever written about her before). She was living with her boyfriend who was sealed to someone before in the temple. And now the boyfriend is living in a different house but later they are going to get married. The mom (Maria de Jesus) also has a daughter and they basically knew everything already. We just taught a little bit more and secured a few things. They are going to get baptized this week on Wednesday because it’s the mom’s birthday that day. That makes things a little bit special. Also we didn’t know before but she has another daughter. We had the first lesson with her on Thursday and we explained the restoration. Friday we read the first chapter in the Book of Mormon together. That night we left her with the second chapter and the homework to pray to read if the book of Mormon was true. When we went back on Saturday we asked her,
“Did you read?”
“Did you pray?”
“Did you have an experience?”
(Some of the sweetest words that I have heard here in my mission) “Yes”
She went on to explain that she prayed to know if the book was true and to see if she had enough faith to make a sacrifice like this family did. She couldn’t describe how she felt but she knows that the book is true. She has a baptismal date set for the 9th of April.
Well, as for downs, they exist, but I try not to pay attention to them. They really don’t have much weight in comparison to the good times in the mission. Right now the hardest thing is finding people to teach. We’ve got a lot of work in front of us and only a few weeks to do it. It’ll be fun and interesting to see how everything plays out!
I know that this church is true, I know that because I have felt the spirit testify too many times when I’ve taught, talked or performed an ordinance in the church. I know that our Heavenly father knows our needs and knows what’s best for us. I know that because I feel his love for me and for those I teach. I have had so many experiences that have helped me to grow and it’s only the beginning. Who would have known, that a kid from the middle of no where Montana could have such experiences? Nor do I suppose that anyone would have guesses that anyone knew that a boy in Palmyra, New York would have had such an impact on the world. ¡Sigan adelante!
Con Amor y
Elder Mackay
The first ones are from the Baptism of Manuel and Leadro (kids from Telchaquillo)
The one where it’s just two is me and my dad (of the mission, Elder Brixey). It was the last day I was with him
The one with three of us is with Elder Brixey and my new companion Elder Alfaro!
The last one is the one with the millipede!
If I missed any of them well... tell me!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

March 8, 2011

March 8, 2011
“And Elder Brixey waxed old and age. The time came when his mother earth called him back.” And that's how he died. Elder Brixey has gone to his house! Well, not officially he is staying in Mexico for a week with his parents, but he’s not my companion anymore. (Sorry I can’t upload photos in this cyber). Now I'm with a new elder. His name is Elder Alfaro. He is from Lima, Peru! How cool is that! Where is Jared serving at right now? The interesting thing in communicating all that is going to happen. He not only uses pure Spanish, but because he is from Peru it has a few different words too. Kinda like the Texas y´all thing. Another funny thing is that he has one more change than me! We are super young. If you add our times together, it’s still less than a year and a half. Well what a time to grow eh? Hope I don’t go nuts with all the Spanish and everything.
Any way that's the big news. The second biggest news is that we had another baptism before Elder Brixey left! His name is Juan (did I mention him last week? I don’t remember.) Anyways, he lives right by us and is way cool guy. When we introduce the Book of Mormon, we have a little paper that has a whole lot of questions that the Book of Mormon answers. He picked, ¨What does Jesus Christ expect of me?¨ In the end after reading 2nd Nephi 9, Juan´s conclusion was, “that I repent and that I be baptized.” Sounded good to us! Also it helped that his wife is an inactive member, but still has a strong testimony and can explain a lot to him. I’ll get pictures next week or so.
Also we finally moved houses! Its a lot nicer feeling in this house. We got to help paint it too! It was quite different. The only problem is getting everything out of the other house to this house. This week was super long it seemed like but there’s not a whole lot to write. Oh yeah! So in our little pueblo Telchaquillo a really cool thing happened. We are always in contact with them and the group leader Ceasar called us and said that he had a kid there who wanted to be baptized! AND his little brother turned eight this week! We went there and this coming Sunday (the thirteenth,) we are going to baptize them! I thought these kids already were members. They already have a lot of times in church. When we asked them why they wanted to be baptized the older one said, “For a remission of my sins and to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ.” (he’s twelve by the way). His younger brother, the one who just turned eight said, “because I want to follow Jesus”. Sounds good enough for me! They are really excited. The problem with this week is how do I train a guy in my area that speaks another language and how are we going to make it on so little time? We’ll make it. It’ll just be different. I know that you’re all praying for me but don’t worry too much. Know that I think of you all and that I hope you’re all well. Don’t forget that as a child of God, we are entitled to all the help we will need.
Con amor
Elder Mackay
P.S. if you search Mi Bodega Kanasin Mexico you will be really close the church here. It’s between the streets 23 and twenty five and it’s on the left side of street 28 (they don’t really give directions the same way here) anyway that’s how you can see our chapel! Gotta run!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March 1 2011

Well… I was rather heart broken when I checked email last week and there wasn’t anything there = ( but I figured you didn’t do it on purpose. Also this week I couldn’t write yesterday so I had to do it today. Things pushed us around this time instead of us pushing them around.
This week has been a little bit duller. We did divisions twice this week and it was pretty interesting to gel with some new guys for a couple days. The coolest thing about the missionary work is that you’re a huge team all working for the same cause. Very rarely will you ever find some many young men dedicated to the same cause. Every one has their own same quirks.
In the city of Kanasin, there is some good news! WE ARE FINALLY CHANGING HOUSES! We are going to rent from a part member family (well the dad is the only one that isn’t and we can’t figure out why. He is a super good guy and really treats us well). Anyway, we needed to help them renovate the house so we did some painting and such. It brought back some old memories and such of how things were when we first moved into the new house. I enclosed some photos of us painting.
As far as cool moments go, we have a few newer investigators. One is a new lady that is living with an inactive member (not married; I don’t know what the deal is but they don’t seem to think it’s that necessary to get married.) The worse part is that the member is married and sealed to another lady. They are separated, but not divorced or anything like that. She really is pretty cool though. She told us all of this openly in our first visit (which if it were me it would take me a lot longer than one visit). Also she has plans to get baptized on her birthday. Also it’s getting more and more clear that it’s the simple things that get missionary work done. You talked about how a Columbian missionary talked a lot about how the members help. Here in Kanasin it’s a bit of a struggle. Well let me put it this way and you can probably figure it out for your self. The normal attendance is about 100. The people on the roll are about 750. Also they don’t do their visiting or home teaching. We have a few problems. If anyone has any ideas, they are most definitely accepted. Also the bishop’s wife has left, isn’t going to church and is living with her Catholic parents. So it’s a little rough here, but you guys back home don’t have any excuse
As a little spiritual side note type of a deal I figured out something kind of interesting. We all are different. And thank goodness that we are different or this would be a very boring life. However with all of our talents and strengths gathered up it can be enough to overcome trials, but every single one of us need one crucial ingredient, The Atonement. Of all the diversity of all the things that make us different, there is one solution for us all and that is The Gospel of Jesus Christ. ONLY through this can we be forgiven of sins. Only through this can we have true happiness in this live. Only through this can we be exalted and lifted up. Just the brain of Elder Mackay giving a little spin on things. Hope it’s not too crazy.

Well gotta run. Hope you know that I all love you and want to hear from all of you. In case you don’t remember or I didn’t tell you, Dear Elder Still works!
Con Amor,
Elder Mackay

The bunch of guys all smiling and laughing at the end (2) is my district. We really have a good laugh together after the district.
Painting our new house