Wednesday, September 5, 2012

September 3, 2012

Mi Querido Familia:
Whats goooooooooooooood??? Yo so another super sick week here in Victioria! Seriously such a good week in such a good area. We had a ton of success this week and some good ups and downs which really make you appreciate the ups, that's for sure.
We taught like 25 lessons this past week, with 11 new investigators and 2 of our recent converts went to the temple in Tampico to do baptisms this last Saturday as well!!! I was so stoked for them. One of them is Christian who is straight on fire right now! He loves working with us, has institute classes almost every night, reads the scriptures daily, is making tons of good LDS friends, and cannot wait to serve a mission. It's been so awesome to see his progress. Other than that for sure the highlight of the week was Lorenzo Villanueva's baptism this Saturday. Lorenzo has been one of my favorite investigators and seeing his change and progress has been absolutely incredible. Lorenzo is a 55 year old man whose wife and grandson joined the Church about two years ago, but shortly after went inactive. We found them through the help of the Obispado and over these past two changes, we first reactivated his wife and Grandson, and since then have been teaching, reading, and trying our best to invite the spirit to work within him and their entire family. We have had some wonderful experiences with their family over the past month and Lorenzo's conversion has been an incredible testimony to me of the power of the Holy Ghost in conversion and also of the Book of Mormon. A month ago, Lorenzo wanted nothing more than to just listen in (he actually only started listening because we insisted on having a man in the room in all the lessons, haha) and nothing more, but the Book of Mormon intrigued him. As he started to read he was engulfed in it; and something incredible happened: the teachings of the Book of Mormon changed him. Well, mejor dicho, the spirit that he felt as he listened to us and read the Book of Mormon changed him. Pretty soon he quit drinking, he hasn't done that in a long while, and he actually did that even before we taught the Word of
Wisdom. One of the defining moments in his conversion was the first time that he came to church. It was Elder Castillo's last day here in Victoria and the whole family came to church. That night we went by to see how they felt and literally, Lorenzo's countenance had changed. He actually looked different. He talked all about how great all the members had been (such a blessing to serve in maybe the friendliest ward on the planet), how much he learned and how he had felt. Lorenzo has become a true student of the scriptures and is learning and growing everyday. It has been an experience that makes me proud to be a missionary.
Yesterday I taught both Priesthood and Gospel Doctrine classes and it was soo fun. I taught Gospel Doctrine on Temples, the importance the reason etc... and it went really well. I have become such a better teacher over the course of my mission, the Lord has really blessed me with that. The key to good teaching I am convinced is in the questions that you ask, and your ability to let your students learn the truths for themselves (as much as possible) instead of just handing them all this info. When people can arrive at knowledge themselves, or self commit to do things, instead of having it given it to them, the information sticks so much better. The key is to ask good questions that help the truths of the gospel really click inside people's heads as they answer logically and let the spirit work inside them. Well, at least that's my opinion, haha.
So sounds like a super sick week for the Stockard fam as well. I love hearing about all the good times up in Midway. I hope you guys will all go skiing or snowboarding up there sometime this winter. Yes, I definitely remember all the good old Kelly reunions up there. One that I remember especially was when right after, Grams, Ry and I took off in the old '03 white accord and drove to California and stayed the night in Beaver Utah. #GoooodTimes. I really can't believe it's been a year since I got my mission call and that Travis will be getting his sooo soon! Really use this time well to prepare Travis cuz the hour is hastening on. Oh and also, I love hearing from Elder Adams, Elder Faught and of course #ElderSpecialK's letters. Haha I read Elder Adam's first letter from when he got to Belgium, apparently he didn't get the memo about how you don't write home about all the crazy things that happen during the week, hahaha. So glad school is going so well and that everyone is having such a great time. I miss you all so much but that doesn't change the fact that Victoria is the Promised Land. #143 #DYT #JakeHeaps
Elder Stockard

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