Monday, October 26, 2015

A Painting in the Sky

The coolest sunset I've ever seen

Hey Everyone!

It was another good week here in Teacapan. Things were kinda scary around here because of all the talk of the hurricane kinda close by but the Lord blessed us because we hardly saw any effects of Hurricane Patricia here. Some people closed their little stores and left for a little bit because of the Hurricane and the town was pretty dead for a little bit. The wind picked up a little bit and was cloudy but that is all. The waves from the sea were pretty rough earlier last week. 

However, on Wednesday last week there we saw the most beautiful sunset I have ever seen. We went to the beach and took a bunch of pictures. It looked like a painting in the sky. 
Everything is good here. It is still very hot with a lot of humidity which is not fun because the mosquitos are pretty bad right now. We are praying for rain so it can be a little more fresco here.

This was a pretty slow week. We have been contacting in the street to find more people to teach but we aren't really having any luck. We talk to a lot of people and offer service to them but nobody accepts it haha. 
Jameson said he ripped his pants in this hamock but a nice member sewed them up for him
There's a lot of people who work as camarones or fish for shrimp in the sea here. At a lot of our appointments we have some sort of meal with beans, tortillas and shrimp. I love the food here tho! I really enjoy the food, the members make amazing meals for the missionaries. We are really grateful for them in feeding us because we dont have a lot of money to get groceries every week. The other day Elder Moncayo and I made tortillas. We went to a members Tortilla shop where she makes and sells tortillas. It is a a cool process and we got to help make and stack the tortillas which was fun.
Tortilla making at Hna Rubi

Elder Moncayo and I are getting along really well. He and I are pretty close already! He is really awesome and is really fun to be around all day everyday. 
On the way back from Cristo Rey
He said I need to talk more because he usually talks to everyone and I just pay attention and listen and bear my testimony but I am getting better and working on that everyday. My Spanish is getting better still. Its getting easier to understand the people here but I still have to ask a lot of questions to understand. Its been a good learning experience and Im excited to be fluent haha. Presidente Velez wrote me and told me to be patient and by 3 months in my Spanish should be muy bueno. I bring my dictionario with me everywhere and use it a lot. Hermano Hernandez in the ward has helped me a little with my Spanish because he teaches English here. The other day he told me to speak English really fast to see if he could understand haha, he could. It's really funny when my companion or others try to speak English. I bet they think the same about me speaking Spanish! Right now im still studying and reading el Libro de Mormon. Im in 1 Nephi 13 right now.

Our investigator Narciso has been making some great progress! He said that he wants to be baptized on the 21 of November, he also said he wants to get baptized in the sea. We taught him the commandments this week which he thought were pretty strong commandments, the word of wisdom and the law of chastity. He told us that his daughter offered him coffee but he said no which was really good to hear! He has been coming to church every week and we have been teaching him everyday which has been great! Im learning a lot about how to teach to our investigators needs. I can always feel the Spirit in our lessons with him. It's cool to see his progression and willingness to come unto Christ. This is what I want for everyone I teach!

They are building a new chapel here in Teacapan which is a little bigger than the one we go to now. We are hoping to find more people to teach and invite to church when the new chapel is finished. The branch is doing well. There was about 40 people at church yesteday which was good! We had combined priesthood and relief society because it was 4th sunday. We talked about the importance of home and visiting teachers. There is no one that does it here and we are hoping that Home and Visiting Teaching will lighten our load as missionaries and trying to meet with everyone. We are going to try to help with that.

Saturday night at 12 was Daylight savings and we moved our clocks back and we got an extra hour of sleep which was nice! On Sunday, Elder Moncayo left Teacapan for a couple days because since Moncayo is the District Leader he has to go to a leadership training in Culiacan for a few days. So he is there and I am with another gringo in a pueblo called Rosario close to Escuinapa and about an hour from Teacapan. 
Magic town
I'm with Elder Helvey from Utah and its kinda nice to speak English and to understand him haha. Elder Helveys comp went with my comp to Culiacan. Today is P day and so Elder Helvey showed me some of the touristy spots in this town. There is a really a lot of history here. (He said they are at a place with computers that costs them 35 pesos for 2 hours of internet time.)
Lagoon in Rosario
Catholic Church in Rosario

Catholic Church in Rosario
Streets of Rosario

I'm starting to enjoy what im doing a lot more now that I am settled in to Teacapan! It's really awesome to talk to a lot of people, answer their questions, and teach them the Doctrine of Christ. Im learning a lot everyday and Im working as hard as I can to serve the Lord with all my mind, heart, might, and strength. Ive been so blessed. Thanks for the prayers!

Love Elder Bennett

Monday, October 19, 2015

Bienvenidos a Teacapan

Hola Everyone!

My first week in the mission field was definitely a learning experience! I am in the southern most part of the Culiacan mission in a small beach town called Teacapan. It is right on the coast and it is very warm!! The people say that its not usually this hot this time of the year. It is very beautiful here tho. There is a lot of palm trees and beautiful sunsets at night.

Sunset on the playa

The people are very nice here. The people don't have a lot. Not many have air conditioning or plumbing but are so willing to help us and hear our message.
Casas in Teacapan

I got the chance to meet all the members of the small branch here. The members are very kind to us missionaries. They feed us everyday at 2 o'clock and always give us a drink of cold water. Every here asks me where I'm from and what my name is. Everyone asks if Nebraska is cold. I tell them no because they are thinking of Alaska haha.
Elder Moncayo at the church building in Teacapan

The Spanish is pretty difficult. Everyone talks so fast and I cant really understand anyone, but I can catch a few words here and there. I always have to ask my companion what someone says which is a little embarrassing but I don't know what they are saying. Its definitely a challenge right now but it's only the first week and I get better everyday. It's a little frustrating because I want to help these people but its hard because I don't understand what is going on and I don't know enough to how to help them. I pray for strength and the Spirit to help me everyday. Elder Moncayo has been in Teacapan for 3 months now so he knows a lot of people and where they live. Most of the time he talks and I try my best to follow along and say things if I can. I know how to say prayers, bear testimony, read the scriptures, say my name and where I am from and that is about all right now but I am learning a lot. Elder Moncayo is very helpful and patient with me. He has helped me a lot so far. Our first investigator, is a 74 year old man who is interested in our message. We gave him a priesthood blessing my first day here. He came to church yesterday which was awesome! He has a lot of questions. I try to teach him when I can. There is a lot of work to be done here and I am excited to help, teach, and serve everyday!

The food here great! Yesterday we had fried fish with the Branch Pres and his wife. He said I could have the biggest one. He didn't cut of the head so the eyes and teeth were just staring at me the whole time haha. (Jameson told Troy he thought it looked like it was growling at him)

We also had a lot of shrimp since many work as camarones who fish for shrimp everyday in the sea. Elder Moncayo and I also make our own breakfast and sometimes dinner which is fun. Yesterday we made pancakes. We also eat a lot of eggs and tortillas.
The kitchen

I was able to get settled in to our tiny casa in Teacapan. I got all my things organized and unpacked everything.
We go to a members house to do laundry- we carry buckets of water to the washer

The bathroom- no hot water for showers
View from our casa- we are woken up every day by chickens
We have personal study. companionship study, language study, planning, and training everyday. At 12 o clock is when we usually go out and see members, talk to less actives, investigators, or talk to people in the streets. It's fun because its something new everyday and you never know what is going to happen. However yesterday we were in the sketchy part of town and we got stopped 3 times by drunk guys who just tried to be ignorant to us haha.

We have bikes that some members let us use which is pretty handy in getting around everywhere. On Saturday, we rode our bikes to Cristo Rey which a small town close to Teacapan, it took us about 15 minutes to get there. We had lunch and talk to the members there. People are always home so its easy to find people.
Bike ride to Cristo Rey

I knew this wasn't going to be easy, and its not haha. But if it was easy then it wouldn't be worth it. I'm grateful to be here and help bring God's children back to him. Thanks for the prayers! Love you all.

Elder Bennett

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Viva Mexico

Viva Mexico
Hola everyone!

I made it to Culiacan!! I left the CCM at 4 in the morning and my bags just barely made the weight requrements. My bags were 50, 50, and22. We got to the airport and the 10 of us waited in the airport for a few hours which is probably the biggest airport Ive ever been too. We got some food and I tried to sleep a little before we left. We then had to go through security and they had to check my bag and I forgot I had scissors in there haha. 
Missionaries going to Culiacan
We then all had to get on a bus to the plane that was going to Culiacan. The flight was good. It was 2 hours and 11 minutes and I slept on the way there which was great. We got to Culiacan just fine and as soon as we got off we could feel the humidity and the heat slap us in the face right away. Presidente Velez and his assistants Elder Reese and Elder Villadiego were there to pick us up. We all hopped in a van and were brought to Presidente Velez's home which was very beautiful. Hermana Velez made us lunch and it was very good! They have beans and tortillas for every meal here. They took a pictures of all of us new missionaries with Presidente and Hermana Velez. It was fun to talk to them and get to know them, they are very nice. We then went to the mission home in Culiacan. We were greeted by a lot of missionaries. I was able to talk to the English missionaries and they kinda helped me and encouraged me.

Presidente and his wife talked to us. Since all the new missionaries were Latino they spoke in strictly Spanish and I wasn't able to understand quite everything. They talked to us about the rules and our purpose here. Also gave us M and Ms which stands for Missionaries and Members and the importance of working with the members. We received a binder full of talks, advice, motivational things, health tips, etc. We found out our companion and our area of service. I found out that my trainer is with Elder Moncayo serving in the Escuinapa Stake in Teacapan. Teacapan is a small beach town right off the sea. A few of us took a taxi to the bus station where they dropped me off. They told me to get on a bus and travel 5 hours all by myself to Escuinapa. I was so scared traveling by myself and not knowing how to talk to people. They showed movies in Spanish on the way there and the bus had a bathroom and air conditioning which made the ride easier. I got to see a lot of Mexico on my way to Escuinapa.
Bus ride to Escuinapa

Bus ride stopped in Rosario

It finally hit me that I was in Mexico and that I was in the middle of it all now. I got to Escuinapa at 7 30 and Elder Moncayo and another Elder were there to pick me up luckily. We brought my suitcases to a sketchy apartment in the middle of the city where I stayed the night before going to Teacapan the next day. The Elders made me food which was really nice of them and we got to know each other better. I wrote in my journal and went to bed and I slept really good!

Elder Moncayo and I
It is sooooo hot here. All the missionaries have wash clothes that they use to wipe their face from the sweat. Elder Moncayo is from Ecuador and doesnt speak English haha. This is the real deal now. My companion is awesome. He is short but has a lot of energy. He is the district leader. This morning we got up and got ready and went to the chapel to study and meet with the missionaries in the district. Theres 3 other gringos. We practiced teaching an investigator about faith. We then went to the store and bought groceries. We got the basics like bread, eggs, tortillas, cheese, cereal, and other things to eat. Escuinapa is a bigger town with a lot of things going on. We then went back to the other Elders apartment where we stayed the night and got my stuff before getting on the bus. The bus ride to Teacapan was about an hour and this bus didnt have movies, airconditioning or a bathroom haha.
Waiting for the bus to Teacapan
We talked to a Catholic guy about the church for the little bit and answered his questions about the Bible. Teacapan is very small and our apartment is even smaller! Our apartment is about 2 streets down from the sea. We dropped off my stuff and went to go to a members house to get bikes. We then went to the branch presidents house where they fed us pig and beans. It is very warm here and Ive already almost sweated through my shirt. There are a lot of dogs. There aren't many businesses and the house and people are kinda poor. Our P day is on Monday but Elder Moncayo said he wasn't able to email and do laundry yesterday so we get to today.

Everything is good here and now I just need to settle in and get to work. There's lot of work to do here and I am excited to get to know the people and keep learning the language. These first few weeks and months are going to be a struggle but I know the Lord will bless me and help me with anything I need. I know this Gospel is true and being in the field is exciting but difficult. Prayers would be appreciated! Thank you for everything! Much love!

Elder Bennett

District 16D

I was happily surprised on Saturday to receive a short email from Jameson answering some of the questions I had after his last email.

Hey! We can email today since we are all done learning on TALL. So, yes, I am the only gringo going to Culiacan out of 9 other missionaries who are Latinos. I leave at 4 am from the CCM and Elder Cordon takes a bus which leaves around 10 am so he will be without a companion for a while. I trade 3 of my worst ties for better ones. Only one had the heart message on the back but I just kept that, can I just iron those on to other ties? I wish I would have brought ugly ties too tho so I can trade those or wear them...But yeah I think I brought way too much stuff, people dont have near as much as me. I dont know how I am going to take everything. One of the other missionaries said I can be overweight but I just have to pay it and our mission pres will reimburse us?? I dont know I will try my best to be under tho. I'm sending a few pics too. (I had expressed that I was sad to not have seen his face!)

Distric 16D
Connor Nielson was in my EFY group and we found a secret message with a key to the house he stayed in which is the same house that we live in! We were in the same classroom too.

Secret Message

New scripture case for English Scriptures

Last picture with his teacher Hermano Silva

Friends from District 6
Leaving everyone was pretty difficult at the CCM. Sunday was a pretty emotional day saying bye to my district and friends. We watched a video about Joseph Smith and the Restoration before we left which was amazing, I had never seen it before. We had a testimony meeting with all the missionaries leaving. There were 69 of us who were leaving not including the Latinos. Packing was almost as difficult as saying bye to everyone.

Last District picture

Elder Engles, one of my best friends since September 2nd

Latino amigos

Slide Show for all the Districts leaving and singing Hasta Ver

Casa 33

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Tres Queso Lasagna & Magnum bars

Hello Everyone!

Week 6 is already here! I leave Monday, October 12th from the CCM to go to Culiacán. I leave here around 4 in the morning and my flight is at 8:05 am. The flight is going to be about an hour and 45 minutes so not too bad. I found out that I am the only gringo leaving for Culiacán out of 9 other Latino missionaries. I get to play soccer with the missionaries going to my mission so that has been fun. I brought three suitcases and a backpack. They allow one bag free and the other luggage to be checked is going to be 800 pesos. Luckily that's only about $48 in American money. My carry on has to be less than 22 pounds so that will be fun trying to figure out how to accomplish that. The weight of my backpack doesn't matter so i'm going to try to fit as much as I can in there. I've given away a few of my things just to get rid of some weight. I will probably pack Saturday night and weigh it to see if my luggage is overweight or not. Crossing my fingers!
Travel Plans

This has been a pretty rough week health wise again. On Sunday I caught a nasty head cold that is still going on right now. The food this week has also decided not to agree with me this week so that has been crappy. Hope it's not like that for me in Culiacán. But other than that, it's been another good week!

On Saturday and Sunday we had the chance to watch General Conference. All the missionaries in the CCM watched it in the Gordon B. Hinckley auditorium. Thank goodness it was in English! There were so many awesome talks in conference this year. It was cool to see three new apostles called to the Quorum of the 12. I know they are ready and inspired men. I have gained a new appreciation for conference as a missionary. I was able to stay awake for all 5 of the sessions. I took a lot of notes and learned a lot from the great leaders of the church. It's hard to pick a favorite, but probably my favorite talk was by Henry B. Eyring about the power of the Holy Ghost. He talked about how we need the constant influence of the Spirit in our lives to guide us and enlighten our minds. The Holy Ghost is so important in our lives, especially us missionaries. You can never go wrong if you have the guidance of the Spirit. 

Another talk I really like was David A. Bednar's talk that closed the last session commemorating the lives and teachings of the prophets and apostles that have passed from this mortal life. Bednar has always been one of my favorites. I learned a lot about faith and the Atonement of Jesus Christ this conference. Their testimonies strengthen mine so much.

New Classroom

Our devotionals this week have been amazing as well! Presidente Tenorio gave a devotional about saying specific prayers. This was probably the highlight of the week. One story he told was really cool. 

This one sister raised her hand and said she had a problem. She said that she was soon to be engaged to one guy, but there was another guy that wanted to date her. She didn't know how to choose. He then told her that night to say a specific prayer. He told her to go to her room at 10:30 and tell her roommate to leave for a few minutes. He then told her to pray to her Heavenly Father, give gratitude for her blessings, and then plead her case before the Lord. He told her to be specific and explain thoroughly. Afterwards he told her to pray that at 1:15 in the morning, she would receive a phone call from a guy that would say he had been reading his patriarchal blessing which read he would marry a worthy young woman in the temple, and that this boy thought the girl was the one. She would then close this prayer. President Tenorio said she didn't have to do it exactly like this, but that would be the format. So she did exactly as he said. She then went to sleep and at 1:15 a.m she received a phone call from a boy. The boy said he had been reading his patriarchal blessing and that he thought she was the one he was supposed to marry. The scenario went exactly as stated in the prayer. So... long story short, she chose him. Fast forward into the future, President Tenorio saw this couple again and asked the boy if he knew that he was supposed to call her at 1:15 in the morning. The boy had no clue that it was because of a prayer. By the way, the boy she chose was the one that was wanting to date her. That was a really cool story to me and he told countless other stories of awesome Specific Prayers. I am not saying that if you pray tonight for a similar experience it will happen immediately, but if you start little by little, the Lord will answer your prayers. 

On Tuesday the devotional a MTC address by Elder Holland also about the Holy Ghost. My favorite part was when he said that we as missionaries are involved in the work of angels. And we are those angels who administer to those that we serve in our mission and it's our responsibility to be worthy of the Spirit to bless their lives.

Our lessons with our investigators are going alright. We are starting to focus more on their needs and learning how to teach people and not lessons. Hermano Silva has been a great teacher as always. He was sick yesterday though. Hermano Medina is starting to be less strict and has really gotten comfortable with us. He likes to joke around with us and we share the food we get in our packages with him. He brought his wife and kids to the comedor yesterday and they were so cute! Our nighttime teacher, we have learned, is quite the jokester! Hermano Medina. His English isn't the best; I think he learned just from being at the CCM, but he is a pretty sassy dude, haha. We told him that Thursday night we weren't going to be in class, because we had to help the new District, and he just says 'I don´t care' in his English attempted accent haha. We all were just like oh okay then haha. Then on Friday, I asked if he was born in the Church and he replies 'No, I was born in a hospital...' I still do not know the answer, haha because he always finds a way to answer sarcastically or in a different way.

Lunch was awesome on Friday too! Probably the best tasting course I have had here at the CCM. It was this Tres Queso Lasagna and it tasted really good. They werent that big of pieces, but Elder Cordon and I partook of 3 servings haha. And the next day we got Magnum bars which are chocolate ice cream bars which are really good. Other than that I have not become a big fan of the food here and I'm excited to eat the good stuff.

Friday was a really good day!! Each day the weather here is quite sporadic though. In the Mornings it is quite cold and sometimes it stays that way throughout the day, sometimes it is pretty sunny. This week has been really hot! Probably about 95. Elder Cordon and I played soccer for a few hours today for P day. Playing soccer is really fun even tho neither of us are fantastic players. I usually just hustle and kick the ball as hard as I can. I am averaging about 3 goals each time we play. We brought our Suits and Pants to the dry cleaners today before we head out. Things are a lot cheaper here than outside the CCM.

We received a new district in our zone! District 16B. They have 4 Hermanas and 4 Elders and are pretty cool! Elder Cordon and I had to be the acting Zone Leaders and help them get adjusted and give them some nice tips. It is pretty cool! Turns out they weren´t going to call any new Zone Leaders, because the Zone was so small and it would be pointless, but we have been fulfilling the role anyways. Also, the new Latinos in the CCM that arrived last week are pretty sweet! We played futsol with them and they are so fun!

Mural in Reception

My goals are going alright too. I've been focusing on reading Preach My Gospel this week and marking the suggested scriptures. My Spanish is not where I want it to yet but I'm still learning each and every day. Talking to the Latinos is getting easier I think. My Spanish will get a lot better in the field when i'm with my trainer who is a native and he can't understand my English haha.

We took pictures as a district on Monday, said goodbye to another district in our zone. Commenced round 3 of The Secret Missionary Society; I do not know how they were received, but hopefully they got them and liked them. Oh on Sunday we also watched a great film called "How rare a possession: The Book of Mormon" It is a way cool story of two individuals who found the Book of Mormon and how it affected their lives. I recommend it!

I'm excited for the real deal! I'm ready to teach the most important message on the Earth! This is going to be an experience of a lifetime and knowing that I have the Lord's help in all things is so comforting to know. There are specific people in Culiacán waiting to be taught be me! The CCM has been fun and I will miss all the friends I have made here. I will see many in Utah and BYU though. I know this is Gospel is true and that it has and will change peoples lives forever! Thanks again for the emails and support. Take Care!

Elder Bennett

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Jesus and a haircut

Hey Everyone!

I can't believe how fast the time is going here! I am already a month in with 1 and a half weeks to go. I leave for Culiacán on October 12. Today I met a few Latinos going to the same mission as I am finally. I'm grateful for the time that I have had here to learn and grow but I'm excited to get out of the CCM and put my skills to the test. I've learned a lot about Culiacán while I've been here. Nothing new about how hot it is and how much it rains there. I found out that I will probably eat an iguana. The Mexicans say its really delicious haha.
Latino friends- they were leaving

Last Thursday we went to Migration. We left the CCM to go to a building in the western part Mexico City. The bus ride was kinda sickening. It was about a 2 hour bus ride. The sights and scenes on the way and on our way home was pretty interesting and cool though. I got a lot of pictures.
On the bus ride

There is grafitti everywhere
At the Migration building we had to wait in line for a while then once we were called up we got our fingers printed and our passports were checked. All the missionaries that are staying in Mexico for two years came to Migration. I'm not sure what they need from us other than our fingerprints. While waiting in line I talked to a professor from the University of Houston. He said he has a research center in Mexico and him and his wife have been coming here for 38 years. We talked about the church and my mission a little bit. I was distracted by that because when it was my turn to go up I didn't hear them so I waited longer. I ended up being the last one done haha but it was worth it to talk to that guy.
Migration building
Afterwards we bought Coca Colas, our first one in Mexico made of real sugar.
Coke made with real sugar (funny because Jameson doesn't like pop)
We saw many fountains, statues, and cool buildings on the bus rides.
Beautiful building we saw on the bus ride
They fed us on the bus since we were late to lunch.

While I have been here, I have met a lot of missionaries and made new friends!
Some of my favorite people
Elder Trent- one of the goofiest people I've ever met
Latinos in our building that we got to be good friends with
Friends from zone 6
A trio of Elders in our casa left, we got pretty close to them since we talked with them every night.
Friends leaving for Veracruz- they tried to trade all my ties
We even brought all of our mattresses in their room and had a sleep over the night before they left.
Sleep over before Elder Garrett, Stewart, and Durham leave

Also, all the missionaries in our zone had gotten really close and it was sad to see them leave.
Missionaries in my zone

We took a lot of pictures and gave out our emails to keep in touch though. We gave them letters from the Secret Missionary Society but they found out that they were from us. Zone 16 has a tradition of 'having Jesus' which is a cardboard cutout of the Savior. We now have two of the coveted 4 in the CCM. We will pass Jesus down when we leave.
Jesus is in la casa!
The zone leaders left so our branch president, Presidente Gomez asked us to take over the assignments of zone leader until they would call new zone leaders.
Zone leaders who just left
We aren't officially the zone leaders because they usually call newer missionaries to be the zone leaders so they can be the leaders for the majority of the time at the CCM. Tomorrow we meet the new district in our zone that comes in today. Elder Cordon and I are kinda in charge of organizing who does what on Sundays as well.

It was another stressful week. I was kinda sick last week because of something I ate. The food at the comedor isn't always the best, but its just something we have to live with.
Valentina(Salsa) and Sea Salt that the locals put on everything
The water we drink everyday
We go to the tienda a lot to get these fruit drinks called Jumex and cookies called Chokis when we dont eat much at the comedor.
You can buy a lot at the tienda
But I like when they serve American food because it reminds me of home. I can't wait to eat outside of the CCM and eat some authentic Mexican cuisine. I still want to try the churros here. My goals are going fine, memorizing phrases is still a little difficult. I'm continually learning each day. Spanish is getting easier for me I think. I can speak a little fast and clearly now. I have learned quite a bit of new words here. I love singing hymns in Spanish. The text is just more intimate and flowy. We sang a medley of Hark All Ye Nations and I Hope They Call Me on a Mission for choir yesterday before our devotional. It was a neat arrangement and it was fun to sing. It reminded me of something we would sing in choir in HS.

Our Devotionals this week were amazing. On Sunday, the Devotional they showed was by David A Bednar. He gave a great talk on how to be a Preach My Gospel Missionary. I learned so much. I gained a lot of confidence in myself after hearing his talk. The Devotional on Tuesday was great as well. An area authority came in a spoke to us. His name was Emer Villalobos. His talk was how to help investigators Act in Doctrine and how we need teach with the Spirit. I loved when he said that the Spirit will be testified UNTO our investigators but its up to them to accept the Spirit INTO them by acting in doctrine. On Monday, we had the opportunity to watch the live broadcast of Elder Richard G. Scott's funeral service. That was a sad but neat experience. Elder Scott's son, Elder Christofferson, and Elder Nelson spoke and gave wonderful tributes to him. I'm happy that he is once again reunited with his wife after 20 years.

Our lessons with our investigators have been really good lately. We hit a break through with one of our investigators, Daniel. He has opened up to us a lot more lately and more accepting of our help and message. He even cried. Our other investigator, Genaro, has been following our commitments really well. The only problem with him is the Word of Wisdom. Elder Cordon and I have worked really well together and our lessons are effective with the Spirit and the Gift of Tongues. We are getting better at Spanish and our lessons as the days go on. Starting this week we have to give 3 lessons a day now. It is just with one of the missionaries in our district acting like an investigator but it is still a great learning opportunity.

Today is Preparation Day and it is always much needed. I got my laundry done and the things I need at the tienda.

More pictures of the tienda
We take a lot of time emailing which is always the best part of Pday. I received letters and a package this week which I loved!

Post Office
Getting the Mail

We played futsol for a few hours with a bunch a missionaries today. The Latinos are always picked first since they are really good. I can make a few goals my self. I cut my hand on the fence today though so that wasn't fun.
Last Sunday was great! We had leadership meetings as usually. Presidente Gomez always gives us a great lesson and advice. We read about Lehi's dream and holding on diligently to the Iron Rod. I had to give a talk on Sunday. We have to prepare a 5 minute talk in Spanish on the topic given, the topic was Tithing. I was the first speaker and I don't think I did terrible. I'm glad I have that experience now. My district also performed the special musical number in which the 4 of us guys sang I Am A Child of God while our two Hermanas played the Violin. It was really cool. Our MTC Presidency class was great as well. The MTC Pres, Presidente Tenorio, talked about Celestial Marriage and faith. We watched the movie called The Testaments which is one of my favorite church movies. It's about the Ancient Americans and how Christ came to them after he was resurrected. I teared up a little. Our district and zone testimony meetings are awesome. We each get a chance to share our testimony and tell about our day or week. My testimony has grown so much here.
I sure miss this kid!
Mexico is so pretty. Especially here at the CCM. The workers don't let a leaf fall to the ground here. The grass is always cut as well. They take good care of this place.

Yesterday we had to clean the bathrooms in the comedor yesterday which wasn't fun. But they told us that Elder Cordon and I can cook dinner next time for our service. On the side of the big hill by the CCM, they added to the 'B' which now looks like a four haha.

Last night, we saw a bunch of really awesome and big fireworks. The booms and gun shots are constant here still. It sounds like world war 3 sometimes.

In our casa we made Cuddle Fortress which is blankets around the top bunks. The other rooms in our casa are pretty jealous.
Cuddle Fortress

I am so grateful to be serving a mission. My knowledge of this Gospel grows everyday. I love it so much. I know this is where I need to be right now. There are people waiting to be taught and I know that I need to prepare myself as best I can for those people. The power of Prayer is real. I'm grateful for that communication I have with my Heavenly Father who knows me by name. I am strengthened each day to serve as a missionary through him. I know this is the true church and that Joseph Smith was a true prophet. I miss everyone! Thank you for your prayers and support. Twenty three months to go.

Elder Bennett

(I asked to see where he went to class and where he studied)

Haircut.  He told me that he didn't tell her anything before he sat down.  He said he's glad it will grow out before he goes to Culiacan.

Before our haircuts

After the haircut. "I didn't tell her anything before I sat down"