Monday, April 23, 2012

April 23, 2012

Que Dice Familia,
Another week has flown by in Mexico! This place is truly incredible, if anyone ever thinks about complaining about life in America, I would encourage you to take a trip down to your nearest Mexican border town to see how humbly people truly live down here. Very very humble living, but lots of very nice people.
Elder Rindlisbacher and I opened an area, meaning that we are two new missionaries in the area with no investigators or really no feel for the area. Only the two of us live in our apartment, and it's not really an apartment, more of a room. We don't have hot water, but we do have a bathroom. Our entire living quarters is probably about 2/3 the size of Ryan's and my room at home haha. But we do have air conditioning and a washer! Pres and Sister Call have really worked hard to upgrade the housing since they have been here, so most of the houses now have tile floors instead of cement (ours does have tile).  Our area here covers one whole ward and about 10x15 square blocks of pretty near downtown Madero. It has a deceptively high number of people that live in the area because sooooooo many people live in one building haha.
The food is incredible, the tortillas are sooo good and so are the beans and rice.  It's like my dream meal, I haven't eaten anything super crazy yet haha. Lots of chicken, beans, rice, and tortillas. We are on foot for our whole area, but its not that big, we only take a taxi if we need to go to the offices or shopping or something like that. If you ever want to get your fill of adrenaline you should go to a big Mexican city and ride in a taxi haha.  They have the worst drivers I have ever seen here. The humidity is very very heavy here but it hasn't gotten super hot here yet, but this summer it should get really really hot. Oh, that's another thing, the fruit here is incredible. All the trees here are mango, orange, coconut, and lime trees. The mangoes are sooo good, super sweet.
We are very fortunate because our Church building is only two blocks out of our area but the ward is very very small, attendance wise. We have lots of less active members that we are visiting and getting to know. This last week as a way to get to know the members and try and get referrals of people to teach, we had Family Home Evening activities with some less active families in the ward. This was a lot of fun, we did a lot of object lessons with the kids of the families to try and get them involved and excited about church. It made me think of some of the lessons that Elders Snow and Toland did at our house (although I haven't eaten cinnamon yet, haha). But that went really well and we have 4 less actives at church this week.
We also have found quite a few good investigators to teach. One of them is named Gaudalupe. She is a 50ish year old women. We gave her sick son a blessing and she has a ton of faith and loves our message. She is very humble and is reading the Book of Mormon.  My Spanish is honestly really good. I still have to listen really really hard to understand some people but I speak pretty well.
This Saturday, Elder Neil Anderson visited the mission and we had a meeting with him. He gave such an awesome talk! It was all about the power of the Atonement in our lives. The very real power of the Atonement, to not only cleanse us from sin, but also to carry us through every trial or hard time that we encounter. He said that the more we study and learn about the Atonement, the more powerful our testimony becomes of it, and there is no more powerful way to touch an investigator than through testimony of the Atonement. I encourage everyone to try to learn apply the love of Christ through His atonement.
I love you so much, I love hearing how everyone is doing. If you could in the next letter, give me an update on all my boyz out on missions. Love you all so much.
Elder Stockard
Mom, tried to send pics and it didn't let me, I'll try next week. love you.

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