Yo, what's good up North? Hope it's as good as things here down south! Things are going better than I could have ever imagined at this stage in my mission and in my life. A year ago today, I would have never ever guessed that I would be sitting here where I am today having had the experiences that I've had so far, meeting the people, learning new doctrine, and having eaten so many delicious tacos and tortas, ha ha. I have been so blessed in my mission up to this point and my only goal is to keep having such incredible experiences and meeting such incredible people in the time that I still have left. Time is really flying, I can't even believe it!
I'm so happy to hear about all of you doing so well with all your fitness goals, Momma and Alyssa 6 miles in an hour is very impressive. Congrats! Dad you as well, keep going on it. If only fitness were like the doctrine of Christ in that once in gets into our hearts, it can bring about instant changes that are permanent. Unfortunately, it doesn't quite function that way. ha ha.
Things are going super well here in Tancol, I'm so happy with the work and the members and the way that things are progressing. Our focus on finding, teaching, baptizing, and reactivating priesthood holders is really paying off. A former missionary that we are teaching and helping get active named Ernesto accepted a calling as the 1st counselor in the Elder's Quorum last night, and Bernardo is going to receive the Melchizedek priesthood in 2 weeks and is going to get a calling as well. The other callings are being issued weekly and the ward is really growing. Even with church starting this year at 8am, the attendance has gone way up and we are having like 110 members every week in sacrament meeting. We also are having a TON of success with finding new investigators right now as well. When Elder De Hoyos of the 70 came to the mission, he taught and focused on how we can find new investigators through the members now that contacting is off limits. Elder Quiñones and I have really been trying to apply these principles and it's really been working, this week we found 6 new investigators that really have potential.
We also had a TOTAL miracle! Check this out homies: So we finished a lesson at 6:30 in the farthest part of our area and we had another lesson close to there at 7:30, so we had an hour with no real solid plan. Not having a ton of viable options of people to visit in that area for an hour, we decided to look for some former investigators that we had a list of that other Elders had taught. As we were doing that it was BLAZING hot and we weren't having any type of success. It almost felt as though we were just killing time... but we kept at it, looking and looking, when we decided to head up one street. As we did so, a lady getting out of her car says, "Hi Elders, how are you, I'm Sister Prado from Barrio Modelo... Oh and by the way, my friend who lives here at this house wants to get baptized, let me introduce her to you!" SICK!!!! How crazy is it that? At the exact moment that we were walking up that street, la Hna Prado also pulled up to her friend's house, to visit her, who lives in our area, who had wanted to be baptized for a while? #MIRACLE. Her friends name is Patricia and we set an appointment to go teach her tomorrow so we will see how it goes.
In other news, President Jordan called me yesterday and said he wanted to come by and drop off something for me... It was a little weird but I was just like, whatever. So he shows up with a red bag that had a tag saying "Love, the Swapps" Hahaha, they had had a mission president conference in Mexico City and the Swapps had made some AWESOME, American, chocolate chip cookies and had given them to the Jordans to give to me. That was so nice of them, I want to thank them so much, Grams if you can call President Swapp and tell him thanks so much and also pass me their email address I want to thank them. They are super busy I'm sure, but that was so nice of them to do and I loved the cookies.
In other news, word had it that my convert Christian, the 18 year old guy that was a miracle baptism of Castillo and I in Victoria, HAS TURNED IN HIS MISSION PAPERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I am so stoked for him, it makes me so happy to hear how well he is doing. Also, I got a letter from la Familia Preza this week... Let me just say that every hard day, every drop of sweat, every tear, every appointment that falls through, every second that I haven't wanted to work hard or obey, but I've done it anyway, IT IS ALL WORTH IT. It's all worth it for these wonderful people who have humbly listened, studied, prayed about, and come to know the truth of the restoration of the Church of Jesus Christ and all the blessings that come from it. IT'S ALL TRUE and it's all for our happiness. The gospel changes people, I feel it changing me and I see it changing others. I am so grateful for my mission and what it's teaching me. I love you all so much but I'm so glad that my time as a missionary isn't up yet. I'm so grateful for the atonement of Jesus Christ and for the blessings of the gospel. I'm so grateful for all of you, my family and friends that support and love me. Thank you all so much. Have a great week. IT'S ALL TRUE! #143 #GMC$ #JakeHeaps