Elder San Diego's Address

Explanation on Sending Packages and Letters

If you would like to send a letter:
Elder Eric San Diego
Apartado Postal 118-184
Gustavo A. Madero
Mexico, D.F. C.P 07051

If you want to send a package:

You write this exactly, including Elder Jose Luis Escobar Maya (They don't like more than one name coming to the same PO Box when dealing with packages).

Elder Jose Luis Escobar Maya
Apartado Postal 118-184
Gustavo A. Madero
Mexico, D.F. C.P 07051

To make sure Elder San Diego gets the package just make sure his last name is in the return address (or next to the return address).

December 31, 2012

Good Bye 2012, Welcome 2013!!

Hey guys!

We had a pretty good week. It was great seeing my family on Christmas via Skype. It truly is a miracle and a blessing to have the kind of technology that we have in this time and age to bless our lives and the lives of others in an instant. It was good to see them and hear of their successes. We had a good week and found some great people who are excited to listen to the gospel and know of the blessings it has to offer us in our lives. One sister in the ward even brought her friend to church this week and then presented her to us. She was excited, as was her friend, about the opportunities that are opened before us as we open our hearts and souls to the Lord by receiving His gospel. We worked hard and will continue to do so.

In this time of the year, we have the marvelous opportunity to reflect on our lives, our successes and failures, the chances we have to improve, the love we can give, and the happiness we can find in the service of the Lord. In this season of the New Year, I am reminded of the principle of repentance. Many prophets and apostles have written and spoken of this divine gift of repentance. It is well known that the Savior gave His life for us that we may live. It is true that it is only in and through Christ our Lord that we can be washed clean of sin and sorrow and receive the peace, joy, and glory that awaits us in the heavenly realm. Yet, He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way. My dear friends and family, let us not turn to our own way and forget the Lord. Let us not wander in darkness. Let us not commit one more sin or regretful mistake than is necessary. Let us always remember Him. Let us live our lives as He did His. Let us reach out and help another. Let us serve our brethren. True happiness only comes by making others happy. Let us rise out of the dust and shake ourselves off and act instead of wait. Let us rededicate ourselves to the Lord. In this New Year, let us live better, stand a little taller, and be more Christ-like. We have the chance to repent; to change! If we have made mistakes, it's okay. All of us do. What we need to do with those mistakes is forsake them. For that reason, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ came to the world. For that reason, He sacrificed all so that we may live, if we will repent. Let us start again and come unto the Lord with a broken heart and a contrite spirit. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Ronald and I just chatt'in it up!
The after effects of Christmas dinner on me and Elder Hatch

December 24, 2012

Feliz Navidad Everyone!!

Dear folks,

We had an okay week. We found the little girl named Vania who we are preparing for baptism and she is still excited about it. (If I have never mentioned her before, she is the daughter of an inactive member lady we found) The only thing is that she couldn't go to church this week again. The good thing is that her mom doesn't work for the next few weeks and wants to start going back to church! So we should be able to find her more frequently and prepare her for baptism. Yay! This week we had two families we had found tell us that they don't want to or can't listen any more. It was disappointing for the both of us but we kept working to find more whom we can teach. But we have good hopes and faith for this week. We had a guy contact us yesterday in the street and tell us he wants to learn more and be closer to God and Christ. That was a tender mercy from the Lord and we will meet with him tomorrow and see how it goes! It should be good and we are praying for the best!

In good news, the world didn't end! Whoopie! That just means we still have time to save people! But we had a good week. Lately, we have been helping a kid in our ward with his english and as I have taught english over the course of my mission, I remember the words of my past english teachers telling us one day we would have to teach somebody english and me thinking 'yeah, right'. Just goes to show that all those who are older than you will always be right. Anyway, tomorrow is Christmas! Yay! My prayer is that we may always have the spirit of Christmas to be with us throughout all the year, and not just in the moments in which we unite as a family to celebrate the holidays. Let us always remember him. In good and in bad, let us give thanks to the redeemer of our souls, Jesus Christ, the very Son of God. May our hearts always be full of cheer, love, joy, and giving. As we focus and center our lives on Christ, we can enjoy the peace he has to offer us in life. We are never alone. We are never forgotten. Let us never forget Him. And may we always enjoy the feeling of Christmas all year round. In the name of our Saviour, Jesus Christ. Amen.

See you tomorrow family! Love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Hey! The world didn't end!

December 17, 2012

Happy 29th Birthday, Mom!!!!

Hello and welcome to the next edition of "Where in the World is Elder San Diego?"!

Elder Cadena and I had a great week. 

We had Luisa and Tania's baptism on Tuesday and it was marvelous! My companion baptized Luisa and I had the privilege of baptizing Tania. They are super great and will be great examples of good. 

Also, in Catholic news, it was the Virgin Guadalupe's birthday this week. I'll explain the hubadaboo about all this confused belief and such when I get home but anyway, the Basilica de Guadalupe (center of the Virgin worship with cathedrals built to honor her) is right along the far edge of my area. What people do is come from all over and from different states of Mexico to give thanks to the virgin and sing the maƱanitas to her. (like I said, it's a bunch of hubadaboo) So people come walking in what they call "peregrinaciones" (basically parades of people) and they are called "peregrinos" which translated means "wanderers". I think it's pretty funny that they are called wanderers and they come from afar to worship idols. It's just too ironic for me. But yeah, it was all packed up in this piece and there were many a people who came, an estimated 3 million. 

Then, we had a mission conference this week with Elder Daniel L. Johnson, the area president of Mexico for the Church. He talked to us and shared lots of good things with us on how we can improve the already marvelous job we are doing here in this mission. He gave us a statistic that in this mission of every 9 new investigators we find, we baptize 1. In all the other missions in Mexico, they have an average of 1 baptism for every 15 new investigators that they find. In all of Latin America, the average is 1 baptism for every 21 new investigators found. Thus, we are doing good over here. But, more important than that is the work we as members must complete in retention, activation, and fellowshipping. That is what leads to true conversion and makes it possible for us and others to be worthy for the gift of eternal life. 

This week, our stake also had a big Christmas party which was fun. We also found some additional families this week who we are excited to start working with and inviting them to come unto Christ. We are doing great and I hope you all are too! 

Let me not forget to wish a VERY Happy Birthday to my dearest dearly mother!! Happy Birthday Mom! I don't know how it works out, but I keep getting older and you keep staying 29! Crazy. Much love to you, mom! 

We will have a great week and I hope you all do too! If the world really does end, Happy End of the World Day! If not, I'll talk to you next week! I'll get my schedule all set and let you know what time we will Skype next week. Love!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Luisa and Tania's Baptism!
I helped teach a Christmas song in English to this group of kids along withElder Wood and Elder Durrant that they performed during the Stake Christmas party and it turned out great! 

December 10, 2012

Getting A "Big Hug" From The Spirit

Hey fam bam,

We had a really great week. We found lots of new people while looking for inactive members that are golden! We have planned some appointments for them this week and look to invite the Spirit strongly with them so he can testify of the truth of all we share. Very exciting! 

In other news, we have Tania's and Luisa's baptism lined up for tomorrow and they are super set! We also had a cool experience this week with Luisa. We went over to teach her and we started going over the commandments. I taught the second commandment and asked her if she had any questions. She replied that she did and started asking what "true and living God" meant. She started to ask if God and Jesus Christ really did exist and if they did, where they were and how we can say we know if we have never seen them. As she talked, I felt very strongly the presence of the Holy Spirit and after she was done I asked her what she was feeling. She replied that she felt a really good warm feeling on the inside and that it felt like she was sweating on the inside. I then asked her if she knew what it was and she said she didn't. I told her it was the Spirit and that it was testifying to her and to us that Christ does indeed live and that we know all things through the Spirit. I asked her how she felt in church and she said when she was there she felt as if someone was giving her a big hug. I then testified that that was also the spirit and reminded her of the other times we had felt it together. We focused her on that and that the way to receive it in fulness in our lives is to be baptized. It was a marvelous experience for the spirit to answer her own question and help give her the strength to use her agency for good and continue to prepare for her baptism. Yay! 

Good things are going to happen and December will truly be a month of miracles!  Elder Cadena and I have noticed a change in the people and a different spirit about them and that they are more open. We know that it is the spirit of Christ touching the hearts of the people to open them up for the message they will receive through us. Yeah! We are super excited to be doing missionary work right now and are ready to receive an outpouring of blessings from the Lord. 

Well, that's about it! I love you all! Have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

"Orange" ya glad I sent you this photo?
This week I ate a gusano, which translated means worm.  Mmmm, yum!!

December 3, 2012

"I Testify That Christ Lives!"

Hey guys!

We had another super duper week here in the vineyard of the Lord. 

On Wednesday we had a great mission conference where the spirit was strongly present and we learned a lot of great and important things about our work and relying on the Savior in those hard times of our missions and our lives. 

We worked really good and found lots of other people who we can start to teach. This week our baptism didn't go through, but we plan to have it this weekend. It is a mom and her daughter named Luisa and Tania. They are really good and we can feel the spirit very strongly every time we teach them. They are excited to follow the example of the Savior and take this very important step in their life towards returning to the presence of God. Yay! 

In other news this week, me and my companion had the opportunity to run into a modern-day Korihor! Never thought it would ever happen, but I met an anti-Christ! We were walking by and he stopped us and gave us a piece of paper each and we said goodbye and kept walking. Later as we opened it up and started reading it, Satan just flowed from the words that were printed. It was pretty hilarious reading the lame argument and the rest of the stuff that was there. Interesting and very uninspired. So that was good. 

Good week and a better one to come! I testify that Christ lives. He is our Savior and our Advocate with the Father. Through His grace and mercy, we can obtain the mighty peace of mind, body, and spirit that God has to offer us. He has restored His truth to the earth in our days through His prophet. No unhallowed hand shall ever stop the work of the Lord from progressing. I testify that He is and was and is to come. I know that He is the way. He is our very Redeemer. His name is Jesus Christ and His power is in and through His gospel. Of this I testify in His holy name. Amen.

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

November 26, 2012

The Lord Will Lead You To Those Who Are Ready!

Hey guys!

Me and Elder Cadena had a good week last week.

We baptized this last week a reference we got from some inactives in our ward. It was their grandson, Carlos, and so we talked with him and taught him and he decided to be baptized. The cool thing was that his grandpa had the opportunity to baptize him and because of us going over and the spirit they were able to feel with us, we activated 3 people from that family and have plans to invite other family members that live there to listen to our message.

We also had a great experience the other night also. While we were passing by this one lady on the street that we had previously bought elotes from one night, I decided to stop and say hi to see how she was doing. As we stopped by she  apologized and said she had lied to us before because we had gone to look for an inactive and we asked her if she knew who we were looking for. Long story short, she lied because her husband doesn't like us or that she got baptized and she told us she was who we were looking for.

We talked a bit and she mentioned her sister and how she has a lot of life problems. So, I asked for her name and direction and the next day we went to visit her. We helped her and invited the spirit to her house through a little message we shared and used the 6 steps and invited her to baptism and she accepted! She and her daughter went to church and enjoyed it. We have her baptism planned for this Saturday and plan to also talk to her daughter and invite her also since she wasn't there when we talked to her mom.

All in all, we are doing great and have some really great references who we will be working with hard. We also have been able to activate 2 other families who also have lots of family who are not members yet.

Good stuff! I love you all! Have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

November 19, 2012

Tired....But Satisfying!!!

Hey guys!

We had a tiring but satisfying week. We were able to visit a lot of inactive families in our ward and have started to help them get back on the straight and narrow path. And we had success! We got 3 inactive families to church this week and have more committed to return next week and keep up with their promises they have made with God. While with one inactive couple, we got to know their grandson, Carlos. He is a great little boy that is 9 years old and had always liked going to church with his grandparents before. So, we started teaching him and he will be baptized this Saturday! He is excited and so are his grandparents. We have also found a couple more people to teach as we have been visiting and activating members who are doing well. So we are excited for all of them and anxious for them to feel the spirit more and complete their commitments. So, we are going to have some awesome times this next week! 

Well, that's all for now. Take care! Love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

We went bowling as a zone last week and did it tournament style. 
I barely got in to the finals with a score of 110 from the qualifying game and....
...then won it all in the finals game coming from behind 
with a score of 139 thanks to some last second strikes! 

November 12, 2012

So Many Referrals....So Little Time!!

Hey guys!

We had a great week and lots of experiences with the spirit with members. It's really neat seeing members receive the courage to share with others the joy they know and the truth that they are blessed to have. We have so many references that it's been a struggle to talk with all of them. Good stuff. We will focus more on being able to talk with all so we can invite the spirit with them and help them progress in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

We also had a great Stake Conference on Sunday! It was a big broadcast to all the stakes and the speakers included Sis. Stephens from the Relief Society Presidency, Elder Clark from the Seventy, another elder from the seventy whose name escapes me, and Elder Richard G. Scott from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles. They are gave heart-felt talks and the spirit was strongly present in the meeting. Here are some things that were said that really stood out to me:

"Success is going from failure to failure without losing enthusiasm." quote by Winston Churchill
"Enduring to the end means getting up every time we fall down."
"Faith and fear cannot exist together."

Some of the themes shared were about the sacrament, centering ourselves on Christ, the importance of family home evening, and the blessings of marriage and the temple. It was a truly inspiring Stake Conference. 

But, we are doing great and will continue to do so. I love you all! Have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

These are some of the altars of offerings they make in Mexico for  Day of the Dead.
The belief is that their loved ones that are dead come to visit on that day so they put out pictures of dead loved ones and also put out some goodies or food that that person loved while they lived,
and the people here say the spirits come and "eat the food".  Nice tradition. 

November 5, 2012

Love & Appreciation For Sharing The Gospel

Hey folks!

Great week! We had so many cool experiences with the members this week as we went over to their houses and taught them with the spirit. We have already seen many blessings from the Lord in our work. When we invite the members, with the spirit, to help us in the work and invite them to think of people who they know who are ready for the gospel they give us so many that it's starting to get hard to plan our time in our days. But! Everything is super good. We really are going to see a lot of success soon and I am really excited and humbled by it too. I don't think I can adequately express the gratitude I have for members who truly take the name of Christ upon them and help others receive the blessings of the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Thanks to such a member and his fearlessness to share what he knew to be true, my family is truly blessed to have the gospel in their lives and thanks to him I have enjoyed so many blessings. Like I said, I can't fully describe how much appreciation and love I have for members of Jesus Christ's church who choose to offer the blessings of the gospel to those they know. 

Well, that's pretty much all for this week. I hope you all have a great week! I love you!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

View of Mexico City from Martin Carrera

October 29, 2012

No More Tracting!

Hey guys!

What an exciting week we had!

First big news: the way mission work in Mexico has changed drastically. We are no longer allowed to knock and contact. Instead, our work will be focused on working with members and getting them to participate in missionary work and lead us to those who are prepared for the gospel. 

As a mission, I would say that we understand the Spirit better than any other mission in the world and how to recognize it and acting upon its promptings. I will have to tell you later about our way of working with members, but suffice me to say that it is incredible inviting the Spirit with members and see it work in them and inspire them so we can receive references from them. We are already starting to see the fruits of our labor that we will soon have. How exciting! The Lord is definitely speeding up His work and changing the way it is done for the better. We are going to see amazing things happen in this mission. I know the Lord has a grand work for us to accomplish and we will surely do it. 

I love you all! Have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Elders of Martin Carrera
Conquer the hill!

October 22, 2012

"Families Are Forever!!"

Hey guys!

This week was okay. We are still working hard and trying to find good investigators though. We had one good experience this week with a young guy. His name is Luis and he is 17 years old. When we were knocking we found him and he invited us to come back to talk with him. When we went in we talked to him a little and he ended up telling us his dad died about a year ago from a heart attack and he felt that God was unjust and has sort-of lost a little bit of faith. We recognized his need in that moment and taught him about life after death and why God allows what we say to be bad things to happen to good people. The spirit was really strong and he felt it and regained more of his faith. We didn't have enough time to explain baptism to him and invite him but we are excited about him and he is really good. So, we will continue to work hard.

Hope you all are doing great and continue to do so! Love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

October 15, 2012

I Know This Church Is True!!


This was a good past week. We continued to work hard but saw just a little bit of success. Somehow, all of our investigators got sick this week so we weren't able to see any of them. But, we did baptize finally. We baptized a grandson of some members in our ward and his name is Emiliano. He's a good kid and loves to learn and go to church so it's good. We should have a few more in the next few weeks once our investigators get all better. In the meantime we will continue to work hard and find more people.

I know this church is true. I know God shows us our weaknesses so we can be humble enough to receive his blessings. I know the work I am engaged in is true and that it is the Lord's work. I know as we truly rely on God, we receive guidance and love and help from him.

I hope you all have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Martin Carrera missionaries
Emiliano's baptism

October 8, 2012

¡Conferencia General!

Hey hey!

This week was just conferences, conferences, and more conferences! Tuesday we had a Mission Conference, Wednesday we had interviews with President Tervort, and Thursday we had a Zone Conference. Whew! Lots of good stuff heard and learned. 

During the week we got some good work done and started involving the members more and relying on them to help us out in the work. Cool story: Friday night we ran out of appointments and we had an hour left to work. So, we decided to set out and knock some more. As we knocked, we weren't having success, but then we got into one house and found a big family of 9! Needless to say, we received a great blessing to find them for being diligent. We are going to meet with them this next week and they are really good so we are excited to meet with them.

So, greatest part of the week..... General Conference!!! Yay! It was sooo good. Highly recommended by me for you ALL to watch it again on lds.org. Some highlights from conference!

A temple will be built in Tucson, Arizona! Yay!

The new age for young men to leave on a mission: 18! New age for young women: 19! So great! The Lord is truly ready for the youth of the church to become great leaders and disciples of Jesus Christ.

"Once we are out of neutral ground, we can never return."  - Quentin L. Cook
"I'm Mormon. I know it. I live it. I love it."  - Ann M. Dibb
"As we do the things correctly and we live the gospel, we will grow to love it."  - Ann M. Dibb
"When we rely on the Atonement of Jesus Christ, we can overcome all trials in life."  - Shayn M. Bowen
"Ask the missionaries! They can help you!"  - Russell M. Nelson
"Take joy in the journey. It's not a race. We can't be so focused on the final goal that we fail to realize the happiness we receive on the way."  - Dieter F. Uchtdorf
"The problems of tomorrow can be gone if we follow Jesus Christ today."  - Dieter F. Uchtdorf
"We must be men that women, children, and God can depend on."  - D. Todd Christofferson
"Take His hand and with Him enter in."  - Boyd K. Packer
"Observe then serve."  - Linda K. Burton
"God needs disciples forever."  - Jeffrey R. Holland
"To know is not enough. Conversion comes through doing and becoming."  - Russell T. Osguthorpe
"All things are fulfilled by faith."  - Marcus B. Nash
"The future is as bright as your faith."  - Thomas S. Monson

Needless to say, it was an amazing General Conference. Read the talks again! It will serve you in your life for the problems you face.

Well, have a great week! I love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

October 1, 2012

"Trust In The Spirit And His Power To Testify!"

Hey folks!

Great week!

Not much time to write, but I'll just give a brief update of some things that are going on.  We have one investigator, Bertha, who is amazing.  The first time we taught her, we taught about the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  When the Spirit was among us, we used the six steps and identified it with her.  As I talked about baptism and the importance to follow Jesus Christ, I was scared to invite her to be baptized because she had told us she was a Christian and I was a little nervous to resolve her possible doubts.  But, I trusted in the Spirit and his power to testify and asked her if she had followed the example of Jesus Christ to which she responded, "no".  We then invited her to follow Jesus Christ's example and be baptized and she accepted.  She has gone to church and a baptismal service both in which she has felt the Spirit strongly.  She loves everything and feels great.  We even had the opportunity to invite her brother with us to the baptism and he also loved it!  As I was talking to him I invited him to also prepare to be baptized with his sister as he had just seen in the service and he said he would.  We are doing great and learning lots of things.  Great times and more stories to come next week!

I love you all!  Have a good one!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

We ate at McDonald's today and one of the workers came up to us and asked if we wanted to contribute ten pesos to a McDonald's Charity fund here in Mexico and I said "sure!" Ronald McDonald, you saved my life by giving me a scholarship to go to school. For that, I thank you by eating in your establishment and giving ten pesos to help you out among the Mexican people.
Climbing up "the Hill"

September 24, 2012

Trust In The Lord!!

Hey guys!

This week was good and full of little blessings from the Lord.  We really have been working hard and continue to rely on the Lord to bless us in all we do.  This week in my free time I have pondered many things that pertain to our personal spiritual progress and about how dependable we are to the Lord.  I think when we can remember in the work and in our lives what the Lord is trying to do with each one of us specifically, we forget the troubles and challenges we face and move on knowing that our trials are but a small moment and if we persevere faithfully we shall be exalted on high.  While working some weeks, I know I have felt that at the end of that week like we didn't accomplish much.  This week for example was not one of my best as far as being able to find new people to teach and teaching them. 

However, I thought about some of the things that happened while we were working and how they were challenges sent from the Lord to help strengthen us.  For example, I was able to teach my companion about patience with people when we get annoyed with their excuses.  Also, when we were looking for someone, we came to a dead end and we saw that a guy who was drunk and high had followed us and was waiting for us at the bottom of the hill.  We were considering other options to escape but then I just told my companion that if we had faith and prayed we would leave unharmed.  We prayed and left and passed right by the guy as he tried to stop us and went along with our work without trouble.  In trials we need to rely on the Lord and see what he is trying to make out of us, what kinds of lessons he is trying to teach us, and ultimately who he wants us to be; that is, men and women of God.

I am so grateful to the Lord for the many blessings he has given me in my life and also for the trials that he has put in my path to help build me up.  I know that as we focus our energies and talents on building others up, we will find that we are also built up in the process and that the Lord will bless us in unimaginable ways. Trust in the Lord.  Trust in his power to change and lift you.  Forget the challenges and focus on the blessings.  I testify that the Lord does indeed build his people and shapes them according to his will and I so testify in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

September 17, 2012

A Super Duper Week!!

Hey folks!

We had a super duper week over here working, getting wet, and doing all the things a missionary does.  I don't have much time to write, but here's a little update.  We have a few good progressing investigators and hope to work them more towards baptism this week.  We helped this one lady out who is getting baptized this week and her's is a very interesting story that I will have to tell later.  We are doing good and working better together.  Good things are happening and we are gonna do even better!  I love you all! 

Have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

September 15th and 16th they celebrate the Mexican Independence Day.  
We had to be in the house early and these are the fun things we did.  Enjoy!
"Just look at my beauuuutiful mustache!!!"
Viva Mexico!!
Ay, ay, ay, ay canta y no llores,
 Porque cantando se alegran, 
Cielito Lindo, los corazones

September 10, 2012

"The Things We Can't Measure"

Hey guys!

Wow, what a week it's been! 

Elder Cadena and I worked so hard this week and things are coming along.  He is learning really good and putting all the things I teach him into practice.  He is excited to learn more and that just makes me even more excited too.  We had a really good week and found a lot of people who know this is true and want to change.  All they need to do is act.  So things are going good there.  It is a little different with my new responsibilities as district leader, but it's going good and really gives me a good opportunity to serve those in my district and bear my testimony frequently.  So the work has been going great and will be going even greater!

Then, on Saturday, we had a special mission conference and Elder Dallin H. Oaks of the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles came specially to our mission just to talk to us.  It was a really neat experience and we each got to greet him personally and shake his hand.  He's really is a funny guy in person and very lively.  I was part of a special musical number that we sang and that also was a cool and very spiritual experience. One thing he said that really stuck out to me was, "It is the things we can't measure that are often more important than the things we can." We can all apply that to our personal lives that the things that are often more important are the unseen internal personal growths of testimony and love towards God and Christ. So all in all fantastic week and great experiences and more to come! I love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Elder Quirante, an old BYU roommate
Me and good 'ol Juan Diego
Washing Clothes!

September 3, 2012

District Leader & Trainer

Hey guys!

Great week and man am I tired.  But! Gettin' all geared up with energy to kick butt this next change! 

Some things have now changed too.  I am now a dad! Yay!  Haha, that's what we call it in the mission when we train someone.  So, I'm training a new elder now! Woo!  His name is Elder Cadena and he is from Monterrey, Mexico. Cool kid.  He and I are totally gonna tear it up this next little bit!  Rock! 

So, along with being a trainer, President Tervort also called me to be a District Leader. Yay!  So now I gotta keep doing good and working hard.  Elder Wood also is going to be a trainer and still being DL so all is well with us. 

Other than that, it was a pretty uneventful last week with Elder Wood.  However, we did baptize! Yeah!  We baptized Pilar, who I might have talked about before, but not sure if I did, so I will fill in one day when I have time.  Anyway, we are going to have a rockin' week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

My new comp, Elder Cadena from Monterrey, Mexico
We helped the sisters in our district with their baptism and we got to meet Bro. Juan Jose. 
He is super cool and one of the most solid converts I have ever met.
Pilar's Baptism!

August 27, 2012

"My Peace I Give Unto You"

Hey guys!

We had a good week despite a few setbacks.  The family that was to baptized this past weekend told us that the grandpa wants to get baptized too and asked his wife to wait for him so they could get baptized as a family.  So, she and her daughter and grandson decided to wait another week and a half until he gets off from work to be baptized with him.  We were a little sad to have them wait longer for the blessings they will receive from baptism but decided that it is still great that they have the desire to enter the gospel as a family and that they are still super excited about baptism.

We visited with the family of 6 that we found and taught them about the restoration of the gospel.  The spirit was felt strongly and we started to use the six steps, but they still have a few doubts and worries about changing from being catholics.  We cleared up a few concerns but were limited on time to resolve more of their doubts and concerns.  So, we put a sort of half baptismal date for next week that we are working towards so we are going back this week and going to set a firmer baptismal date for them and work more with them through the spirit.  We also have another family lined up to be baptized this Sunday.

Tuesday evening we were contacting to finish up the day.  Elder Wood was on one side of the street and I was on the other.  As I was contacting, I remembered what Elder Gutierrez and Elder Andrew, our zone leaders, had told us in our zone training meeting.  They said the purpose of contacting isn't to get an appointment, but to find the chosen of God in that given moment.  As I remembered that, I said a little prayer so that we could be helped to find that person who so desperately needed us. 

As Elder Wood and I reviewed that night the appointments we had set up, we talked about the potential of the people we had contacted.  Elder Wood said he found a cool lady who seemed pretty interested in what we had to share.  So, the next night, we went back to the appointments and all the others had fallen through.  She was the last one we had to meet with. As we looked for her house, we found that there was a closed gate with a little staircase leading up to the house.  We stood and waited for a minute or so when a person came out as he was leaving and said we could go through.  So, we knocked on her door, she invited us in and we talked with her and her son and daughter. (Judith, Luis, Abigail)  So we talked a little bit and she opened up to us and said she really needed peace in her life especially since her husband left her for another woman.  We explained about how through the atonement and gospel of Jesus Christ that we can receive that peace in our lives.  The spirit was super strong and we invited them to be baptized and they accepted!  It was a great experience and every time we have gone back since, we feel the spirit strongly with them.

Some cool things about that experience is that we had set a goal for that day to find a family of four who we would invite to be baptized, and we did! (she has another younger son who is 6)  So we got the four, and the little one will one day be baptized in a few more years.  Also, when Elder Wood had contacted her, she was off to the side of the sidewalk and a big group was passing by my companion and he felt to contact her instead of the big group.  And, when she felt the spirit and we asked her what she felt, she said she felt a lot of peace and that from the moment we stepped through her doorway, she could feel it.

Great week and another to come!  I love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Mexican Money
I don't know if anyone knew, but I'm a big fan of mayonnaise.
Especially if it's enough to last you a year!
Rollin' like a big shot!

August 20, 2012

Positive Mental Attitude & Self-Fulfilling Prophecy

Hola hola!

Elder Wood and I had another amazing week finding and teaching people. We really focused on always having a positive mental attitude about the work and our investigators and also using what Presidnet Tervort told us about self-fulfilling prophecy. We had our best week yet and found many new investigators and whole families to teach. We have a family of 8 of four generations who we are getting ready to be baptized this weekend! We are way excited and they are too.

On Saturday we had a great experience with using the two mission tools I mentioned earlier. While planning on Friday night, Elder Wood asked me how many new investigators we were going to find the next day. I told him, "we are going to find a family of 6 who are going to want to be baptized." So we put it down as our goal. It was 6pm on Saturday and we had to go do an interview at 7 so we had an hour with no appointments. We weren´t too thrilled to do more and were really tired, but we got ourselves excited to go out and knock by saying it was our most favorite thing ever! Yeah! So we started knockng and on the second door we knocked, we found a family of 6 who let us in and we talked to them for a bit and taught them. Turns out, they were preparing to be baptized by two other elders more than a year and a half ago, but then changes came and the new elders never went back. So we talked about baptism some more and are getting them back on track to make that important promise with God. SO great! So we are receiving lots of blessings and spiritual experiences and we are very grateful for them.

Well, that`s a quick little update for the week. This morning for our preparation day we woke up early and went and hiked the mountain that is in our area with the other two elders from our ward, Elder De Hart and Elder Hurst. It was well worth it and we got some beautiful shots of the Mexico City valley. Later, we went to a member`s house in another area and made oreo truffles and pumpkin pie and she fed us alambre! (basically fajitas) Yum! 

So, we had a great week and will have yet another great one! Love you all!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Cool rose I saw when knocking
Beautiful Sunrise
View of Mexico City

August 13, 2012

Counsel From A Son

Hey dad!

Thanks for the counsel and stories this week.  There was a very special reason that as my motto I chose "have faith and be obedient".  Upon those principles lies our testimonies, the reason behind why we do what we do, why we serve the Lord and why we follow his gospel.  In our faith lies the conviction to rely on the Lord and seek his blessings, knowing that by following through, we shall receive the promised blessings.  In our obedience lies the power that is within each and every one of us to choose the right, to fulfill our destiny and become heirs to the celestial glory of our Heavenly Father.  Without faith, there cannot be obedience.   Without obedience, there is no faith.  We receive the blessings when we are ready for them, when we show that we are indeed worthy of them.  The Lord promises more of his blessings to those he can trust, to those he knows will continue to follow through and magnify their positions.  There is such great power in having faith and being obedient!  One thing President Tervort has told us recently is about self-fulfilling prophecy, or, making our own circumstances.  He said a successful person makes their own circumstances work for them or finds the right circumstances he needs instead of being content with what he has or complaining.   Many many times I have faced this in the mission, being faced with challenges or times when it just seems easier to stop working for the day.  I have always found though that the recipe of faith, diligence, and obedience never fails to work miracles in our lives and to create the circumstances that are good for us and benefit us.  We never stop improving in this life.  We keep growing in ways we maybe thought were impossible before.  As we look towards Christ and focus our lives around the life he lived, we can find peace at every turn, comfort in every hard situation, and success in our trials.

I love you dad.  Please continue to show mom the love you have for her.  I can only imagine, from what little I know about love and how I love you guys as a family, how much you must love my mom.  Express your love to her in little ways day by day as Elder Richard G. Scott has counseled many times.  Go to the temple with her once a week, if possible.  The bond you two have will grow much stronger by focusing on the blessings we receive from the temple and family worship together and fun recreational activities and focusing on having the Christ-like attributes in our lives such as love, forgiveness, patience, repentance, faith, charity, humility, and many more.

I look to you as a great example of good, dad.  I love to reflect on the tremendous amount of faith you had to recognize the truth, embrace it, and follow it, now for more than 30 years.  Let your light so shine that people may see your good example and glorify your Father who is in heaven.

Have a great week and always remember to be better every day.

¡ten fe y se obediente!

todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Knock With Faith!


Not much time to write this week but here it goes!

Elder Wood and I had an amazing week and enjoyed the company of the Spirit with us all week in our labors. We continued to have great experiences through showing our diligence and faith to the Lord. When we would have all the appointments we had planned fall through, we would knock with faith, knowing the Lord would provide for us a family to talk to so we could use time effectively in our day to teach his children.

We always had a place in mind of where to knock in case appointments fell and so when they did, we would knock where we had planned to. We were tremendously blessed to find three families in this way and when we had knocked, they invited us in, we figured out their needs and preached according to those needs. When the Spirit was felt among us, we taught them the Gospel of Jesus Christ and invited them to baptism. They accepted! They are excited to know more and we are getting them all ready to be baptized and receive the blessings that are theirs in their lives.

The funny thing about all of this was when we turned to knocking, we didn´t have to wait long to receive the blessings and had these experiences in the 2nd or 3rd house we would knock showing that the Lord has blessings immediately available to those who plan and follow through with faith.We are just having a great time with the work and it is going super well!

Congratulations United States of America for winning first place in the Olympic Games!

We will have a great week and I hope you all do too!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Senior Photos Anyone?
Making Oreo Truffles!

August 6, 2012

The Lord Will Bless His Missionaries Who Are Diligent!

Hey everybody!

Elder Wood and I sure had a great week, starting out with celebrating his birthday on Tuesday and later celebrating our 1 year mark! I can´t believe a whole year has gone by already! Just one more year to do work!

So, we basically just had a great week of work. We found a ton of people and taught some great lessons. One experience was particularly good and it goes like this: We didn´t find one of our appointments so we decided to start knocking some more. We found one side alleyway of houses and decided to enter and knock. We started with the first few houses and worked our way to the back. As we were knocking, we got the usual rude responses from people and were a little disappointed in the people from those houses. We got near the back and were close to just calling it quits for the complex when we saw a guy, who was smoking, enter into his house. We decided that if we wanted the Lord´s blessings, we had to knock ever single door we found and talk to every single person we met inside. We went to his door, knocked, and he came to meet us at the door with a friendly smile and handshake. We asked if we could enter in to talk to him and he invited us in. His name was Christian and he was a truly great guy. We got to know him a bit and figured out some of his needs from the get-go. We taught him about the Restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and he was very receptive to the message. When the Spirit came to testify of the truth we had taught, we recognized it with him and taught the Gospel of Jesus Christ and invited him to be baptized. He responded that he would love to be baptized! We put him on date to be baptized August 18th to get everything figured out to marry him and his wife. Just goes to show that the Lord will bless His missionaries who are diligent and that you can never judge anyone until you know them. Great experience and we will sure have more to come!

Happy Birthday to my little brother, Michael! Hope you had a great one! We also had two baptisms this past week of some old investigators of Elder Wood! Their names are Erik and Koko and were two friends that were really prepared to change and receive the gospel in their lives and who were helped out to receive the gospel by one of their friends who is a recent convert. It was great teaching them a little more and being able to baptize them! Super cool. Well, I´m running out of time, but I had a great week and hope you all do too!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Elder Wood´s birthday celebration!
Erik and Koko´s baptism!

July 30, 2012

In The Rain...On The Hill

Hey guys!

Wow, I can´t believe how fast the week passed by! Elder Wood and I had a great week working in our new area. We got to know it the first day and then set out working and working and we had some great success from it! 

We found this one family of 8 who we are teaching and they are receptive and want to learn and listen more. We also found other great people who are progressing. So we are excited and working hard! 

Good story: we had an appointment at the very top of the hill the other day and we went up and they weren´t there! Yay! Then, as it rains every day, we found ourselves in the rain on the hill one time and it was coming down like a river! It was insane. 

But, we had a great time working this week and will see lots of success this next week! We also helped the sisters in our district with their baptism so that was pretty cool too. 

Lots of work to do and I can´t wait to do it! I love you all! Take care!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

View of the city
One of the other elders in our area lent us an umbrella that was in his house and...
this is what happened.
Rain pouring down the stairs of the hill
Tired after going up and down the hill (yeah, we use stairs to climb our hills. Talk about a good Stair Stepper 5000 workout!).
Tree growing into and devouring a fence

July 23, 2012

¡Bienvenido a Martin Carrera!


Great week! We baptized Mayra on Wednesday and had a greatly spiritual time at her baptism. Then, later in the week we found a family that is super great and interested to hear more about church and the gospel! 

Anyhow, we finished up the week really well. Oh yeah! This last Sunday we had the opportunity to see Edgar receive the Aaronic Priesthood! Whoo! So cool to see faithful converts continuing their progression in the church and preparing themselves for eternity. 

So, Elder Andrew and I said our goodbyes to great friends and converts from our ward because today we got changed from Peralvillo. We both got moved over to another zone called Centenario and he got moved up as the new Zone Leader in Centenario and I got a new companion, Elder Wood, from Utah and we are opening a new area together called Martin Carrera. Cool stuff.

So we are gettin geared up for working hard and seeing lots of success. Cool thing is he is also from my same generation (meaning we started our missions the same day)! Yay! 

So that´s about it for this week. I love you all and hope you have a great week!

¡Ten fe y se obediente!

Todo mi amor,
Elder San Diego

Mayra's baptism!
One sister in the ward lived in the USA before and when she invited us over to eat, 
she made us spaghetti, AMERICAN STYLE! Yum!
Story time!  I bought this bottle of gel in July 2010 and it just ran out;
Because this bottle lived to style my hair for 2 years, I give it my thumbs up of approval!
Martin Carrera aka "The Hills" - outlook of our area and the hills.
Great view from our hill with the Mexico City temple in the background