Guatemala City North Mission
...let us labor diligently: for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God. Moroni 9:6
Thursday, November 11, 2010
We sent home some of our very finest missionaries. Almost all of them spoke Ke'chi. Three had been Assistants to the President. But we are comforted knowing they will be with their families for the holidays. Cheeril eerib' Hermana Allen, Elders Hansen, Chesley, Wixom, España, Zepeda, & Solano,...china os le corbat. Cuancat salin chool.
Tuesday, November 2, 2010
Dear Parents of our missionaries,
With the approch of Christmas time, I thought I'd offer some personal views. The sooner you send the packages, the more asured you can be that your missionary will have them for the big day.
With the advent of the new Conference directives, we are not scheduled to have Zone Conferences until January. However President and I feel that is too long to go without seeing our missionaries and we needed to do something special for them for Christmas. So we are planning a special mini conference for each area so that we can share feelings we have for the special gift of our Savior's birth. On that day we will deliver packages that arrive to the Office and we are planning a special meal for all the missionaries.
Our schedule will be as follows:
Dec 6 -Peten Zone
Dec 7 Coban /Polochic Zones
Dec 8 Zones in Capital (Victorias, Molino, Alameda, Atlantico, Esperanza).
It has been our sad experience that very few of our Latino missionaries receive mail from home, let alone packages. If you would like to do something special to help your missionary's relationship with his/her Latino/a companion, a small package, we know, would be a marvelous gesture of love from you both. Suggestions could include, socks, shirts, ties, scriptures, bic pencils, treats (they LOVE American candy)
Our mailing address:
Mision Guatemala Ciudad Norte
Apartado Numero 951A
Guatemala Guatemala C.A.
Christmas calls , the following is from the missionary manual:
Take care that calls do not pull your thoughts away from your service or create a financial problem for your family. Keep them short (no longer than 30 or 40 min). p. 37
Monday, November 1, 2010
On Nov 1 Guatemala celebrates their Day of the Dead which is a kind of Memorial Day when families go to the cemetery to remember their dead, clean and decorate the graves. They place food at the grave sites and visit, with a picnic as families. They also fly kites to send messages to their loved ones. Some of the kits are enormous and truly works of art. Colorful and beautiful was our memory of this celebration.
We started our Zone conferences in the capital. Because of the Halloween festivities back home, we thought we’d sweetened the scripture memorization effort with some “trick or treat” candy. 4 candies for a scripture on the restoration or apostasy…..memorized, of course. (see slide show for complete fotos)
Stake conference in Coban was visited by Elder Don Clarke of the Seventy as well as Area Presidency with his wife. Also Elder Rafael Castro of the Area Seventy, the Temple president with his wife, President and Sister Mask. The building could not hold all the members so two sessions were held with a total attendance on Sunday of 1, 150. Our missionaries did their part by having 49 investigators in attendance. Please acknowledge your missionaries efforts if you have any serving in the Coban Zone. They did a great work. Hurrah for Israel!
Friday, October 29, 2010
We have a new chapel in Chulac with new building plans for Sanjunte and Senahu. The dedication of the Chulac buidling is still pending but the building was completed enough to allow us to hold the District conference there. Since no other buidling would have been large enough to hold the 513 people who attended. This chapel is also going to have a special housing unit for the missionaries.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
We received our new force of missionaries. How grateful we are for them, their faith, their enthusiasm to do that which our Savior has asked, 'to bring to all the world the proclamation of the gospel."
Our new missionaries are: Elders Norton, Bishop, Rowan, Sakievich, Olsen, Wadsworth, Tolley, Underwood, Snow, Mitchell, Hogan, Nelson, Dilworth, Cruz, Busto, Centeno, Henriquez and Sister McKnight.
They attended the change meeting on Wed, Sept 29th and there met their new companions as well as the other missionaries who had changes. Welcome Elders and Hermana to the greatest mission in the world!
Our Area Presidency moved our change day from Monday, Tuesday to Tuesday, Wednesday. Therefore our missionaries returning home now leave on Thursday and our Change day is on Wednesday. Our September change Day we said goodbye to Elders Winn, Karr, Peterson, Briggs, Dunkley, Empey, Pierce, Luke, Alvarado, Sacalxot, Garcia - Balmoris, Jimenez and Sister Duarte. We will miss you!
As of July we now have specialized training for the missionaries that encompasses a seminar for the Zone and District leaders, as well as those who are trainers along with their new trainees. This seminar last for 3-4 days and is designed to help the missionaries learn how to more effectively teach by the spirit and teach people, not lessons. These are held during the day and they practice what they have learned at night. President accompanies selected couples of missionaries in each location. These will be conducted every 2 months. We are in a period where we need to baptize more of the investigators that are found weekly. This directive addresses this need.
We now have Zone Conference once every quarter. Interviews will be held in conjunction with Zone Conferences. Because of the logistics of our mission, we have decided to go to the missionaries rather than have the missionaries come into the capital for this training. Therefore, we will be traveling more than previously.
Sept we conducted seminars in Peten, Coban, Polochic (Senahu) and the capital. The end result is well worth the endeavor, by helping our missionaries become better teachers so they can, find, teach, and baptize more of Heavenly Father's precious children. Thus is our purpose here in Guatemala. Thank you for your support.
Sunday, August 29, 2010
In the La Esperanza Stake legend has it that a Mormon Missionary went to the little store across the street from the chapel and showed the owner how she could cover ripe bananas with melted chocolate, roll them in nuts and sell these to the members. The Mormon Choco Bananos were born! Much to the delight of the priesthood who love to eat these in between the adult session and priesthood sessions of Conference. "Buen provecho hermanos!" (see the entire conference photo slideshow to the right)
Sunday, August 22, 2010
On Sept 5th we will be having a mission fast. We will be praying and fasting in particular for a very special missionary, Elder Gray Johnson who had to return home due to illness. He is undergoing treatments to help him recover from his illness and hopefully return to help us gather the Lord's chosen people here in Guatemala. "Get well soon Elder, we will be waiting for your return. "
On Aug 17th the new missionaries were picked up from the CCM and brought to the Mission Office to train as well as to the Mission Home to enjoy a lunch. They were transported by the "Magic Bus" back to their temporary housing until the next day where they would meet their new companions. Welcome to the greatest mission in the world, Elders Meza, Lemus, Navas, Lainez, Tambriz, Garay, Kjar, Gonzalez, Chavarria, as well as Sisters Westenskow, Perdido and Datwyler!
As with each change meeting, we send our experienced missionaries home when they have completed their assignment. This change period we say good bye to Elders Juan Flores, Carlos Flores, Greenwood, Diego Hernandez, Fabian, Sisters, Ayala, Samol, and Lebeau. Earlier we said goodbye to Elder Javier Lopez who returned to Mexico to study.
Sister Nava from Mexico is a realatively new missionary in our mission. She is unique because she comes from an extremly faithful family who currently have 7 missionaries serving in the field. She has Sisters in Chile, Osorio, Santiago, Argentina Bahia Blanca, Rosario, Costa Rica, Honduras, Comayaguela, and of course our Sister Nava is serving in El Estor, Polochic Zone.
This is in direct fulfillment of a prophecy given by Spencer W. Kimball in 1946 who said;
"When I was in Mexico in 1946 I was dreaming for the people of Mexico. I had a dream of your progress and developement...this is precisely what I dreamed: I think I see stakes by the hundreds in Mexico, missionaries by the thousands. "(Area Conference Address, Mexico City, Mexico, Feb 17, 1977)
Monday, August 9, 2010
We celebrated along with other missionaries in other zones our pioneer heritage on July 26th. We started with a devotional and had some missionaries share stories of their ansestors who were among the early saints. Then we had some missionaries tell about how they were pioneers because they were the first in their families to join the church. We had musical numbers and showed a video clip about the young men who saved the Willie-Martin saints from crossing the Sweet water River's frozen waters, at the cost of their own health and well being. We made the correlation on how they are also doing a magnificent work in placing their own desires aside to serve and "save' their brethren.
Afterwards they changed into their P-Day cloths, played outdoor games , had hamburgers, chips, watermelon and fruit drinks!
We are all.....Pioneers
Sunday, August 8, 2010
In Guatemala, the church has reduced the price of a subscription to the Liahona (Spanish language Ensign). It has made a great impact. The very poor still must make a great sacrifice to buy the subscription. 16 Quetzales, about the amount for one day's meals.
We found a little girl in Teleman who, her parents said, purchased her very own subscription. How proud she was to have this picture taken.
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
We received new missionaries on July 6th from the MTC here in Guatemala. We welcomed Elders Thacker, Zelaya, Beltrán, Barrientos, Ixcoy, Majano and Sister Nava with a training at the mission office, an introduction to their new companions and a luncheon at the mission home.
An interesting note: Sister Nava is from Mexico City and comes from a family of 9. She has 4 missionaries from her immediate family who are serving full time missions in different countries of Latin America.
It is always difficult to send our missionaries home after having learned to love them for their faith and noble hearts. This change we sent home Elder Gelinas and Elder Guzman, both of whom were Assistants to the President. They as well as Elders Brady, Geronimo, Grant, Richardson,Aranda, Balux, Tambriz, Medrano and Sister Marilyn Castro will be greatly missed.
Their missionary cloths have seen great use, now they look forward to a new chapter in their lives. God be with you.