Friday, February 24, 2017

Sometimes I get in a reflectionary mood.

In the first journal I used here in the mission every once in a while there was a page that said "Reflections" on the top. And I guess I got in the habit, cuz every once and a while I get in the mood to just reflect about things. 

So forgive me if I wander a little today, reflecting isn't always very well organized. 

It's easy to get caught up in the day to day. There is a lot that we need to get done in life. Important things that need to get done. It's easy to let stress grab your mind and worry so much that instead of getting things done you just end up doing nothing. We have to fight against that. 

Today I was reading a bunch of emails from my friends on missions, and I started to notice how much they all have changed. It's amazing how God takes fresh clay in his hands and starts to mold and stretch, and to make his masterpieces. I have really cool friends! I'm glad for their example and for their righteous service as instruments in the hands of God!

I was thinking this week, I really enjoy being with people. I really enjoying doing missionary work.

I decided I want to do this for the rest of my life!

 I want a job where I can go out and help people and get to know them and serve and bless them in some sort of way! Does anyone know of such a job? One preferably outside and not in an office?

If not I guess I'll just have to take the whole "Every member a missionary" thing to heart and always be a missionary anyways :)

This week there is huge group of missionaries who finish. They are the last missionaries that I see as "Old" Missionaries that are still here. They are the ones that trained some of the people from our group, and after them everyone either about the same age as me or younger(as far as missionary time goes) Is that weird to think? I was doing a report for the insurance this week and had to look through a list of all the missionaries that have been in our mission for the last 3 or so years. I saw a lot of people that I know that are already done with the mission. How can time slip through our fingers so quickly?

Ok, To not bore you I guess I'll try to tell you a little about what happened this week. 

Monday was going to be a normal day, but because of some interesting things that happened last week resulting in an emergency change, monday we were all SUPER busy getting things ready for Tuesday when another switch was going to happen. Also when I logged on to IMOS I saw that Finance Countdown had started again. Love the end of the month. We got to the area super late that day.

Tuesday was our first meeting with President after he got back from Belize. All of a sudden a bunch of work fell on us and I swear EVERYONE needed money. Haha, we got to the area at like 6:00 and were invited to a dinner by a recent convert family. We made Pupusas. They turned out really delicious. Afterward we went to the Majano's house and met Veronica's mom and sister(both less actives) and they were super cool! had a great short and sweet lesson with them which was fun, and then it was already time to get the bus at 8

Wednesday was Multizone in Sonzacate. I didn't end up going because of countdown. But because of the dilemma(I'll explain on Thursday) I couldn't actually do much of countdown. So I worked really hard on other things and went out to E. Mayen and E. Cruz's area with them until my companions got back at like 5:30. We had Ward Correlation :) good day. 

Thursday was Multizone. I loved it. President did a really great job and everything went very smoothly!

Here was the dilemma. Next Wednesday is changes. that means if I pay the missionaries their rent money according to their current area(Next Monday money will be in) then they only have ONE day to pay it(Tuesday) and it's a lie that everyone will do it in time. so I have to pay according to where they'll be NEXT transfer, which would be fine if transfers were final, but because of Belize, transfers were just barely being finished up, and so I had to go in 1 by 1 and put in all of the rents and things as they were available. countdown ended yesterday at 8 p.m., amd I finished it all with only 2 minutes to spare. For the win!

So anyways it was a great week. I am learning alot about mental toughness and diligence. Work, Work, WORK. There is no better substitute in missionary work!

I love you all. I know that the church is true. 

Have the greatest of weeks!

Elder McFarland!

Feb 24 Photos

More last Pday and Laura(special needs girl daughter of Concepcion member and sister of Paula, our recent convert here) in her quinceƱera

February 24 Photos

Pday with the Torrientes(Senior Couple). They are from McKay Matheson's Ward and Sister Torriente was a temple worker with Sister Hartvigsen.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Photos by gil mariana herrey torriente

It's a good week to be a missionary :)

Getting ready for Changes week. Already. 

These next 2 weeks are gunna be crazy ones. Starting Monday it's the last week before changes. Also it happens to be the end of the month. Which means it's also countdown week. Took advantage of the relative calm this week to prepare myself for what's coming!

We've been working like mad in the area this week. Our people are starting to progress and I'm really happy with the ward and the members and how things are going there. Always ways to improve, but I'm not complaining. 

Last sunday we had a surprise when we showed up at church and the Stake President was there. We were happy because Claudia and Jose had told us they were coming to church to see Stephany give a talk, and we know that the two of them really love hearing President Markland(Stake Pres) speak. So we were stoked about that, and then we saw the second counselor to the Stake Presidency show up. His dad is in our ward, so we were still like, ok that's cool, but still more or less normal. Then the first counselor walked in, and we were like, somethings up. What ended up happing was that they reorganized our bishopric, and now we have a new bishop!

So The new Bishopric ended up speaking, and not Stephany, but the Maldonados were still thrilled. Claudia showed up on time, but Jose had to take their son to work so he came in right after the sacrament. 

Also, Stephany is speaking this week on Sunday so they'll be there again.

Also, Claudia told us to make an appointment to go and see them next Thursday for a special occasion, but it's no ones birthday, not a holiday, and we can't figure out the special occasion... more to come on that one...

Anyways, it was a good week, and another one to come.

Pics on the way.

Go out and give someone a hug. Do some service. Help someone to be happy.

Have the greatest of weeks

Elder McFarland

Friday, February 10, 2017

Di kaina rilijan weh Gaad luk pan az kleen ahn perfek da laik dis

Fifty points to whoever can find out which scripture I quoted in the subject line. Belize Kriol.

This week was really great. We had a CLM(Missionary Leaders Conference but in Spanish) conference on Tuesday. We don't actually go to the whole thing(It's mainly for the Zone Leaders, and taught by President and the Assistants) but we get it all set up and make sure the food gets there and all that stuff. Behind the curtains.

Also I had the scary realization that I've passed halfway on my time here in the office. It's passing way too fast. And I don't even want to think about life after the office because the month of June will go too fast. 

I've been thinking a lot about how much I love being a missionary. I love being with people. Talking to them. Learning from them. Helping them as possible. I wish sometimes I were more of an extrovert. I remember how E. Cuevas would just get people's trust so fast. He could get anyone to open up and talk to him. I want to be more like that. 

So Today more than anything let me talk first about the people

Maldonados. Same as usual. Progressing but at their own pace. We've kinda decided that's ok, but we are also not ONLY going to be teach them. Looking for news always. Stephany gives a talk in church this week, so we hope they'll come to support her! I know they are going to be great converts some day. They'll get there, but they need patience and love.

Dora Alvarez. Doing well, but working SO much. In our last couple of lessons with her she has been very worn out from her busy work schedule. I found out this week she is learning to play the guitar! She lets me borrow her guitar and now we sing the opening hymn with guitar accompaniment in the lessons :) :) :)

Majano Family. Just a recap: The Majano's are members of the church. There is a Mom(who we haven't met) and 4 kids. (don't know name of oldest), Kevin, Veronica, and Jasmine. They are all graduated from college and working(except Jasmine, she is still a teenager, and has down syndrome :) Veronica is the most active (although she hasn't come to church in a while.) and Lorena is Kevin's wife. Lorena is NOT a member. But she has expressed a lot of interest and we hope to help them ALL to get to the temple some day :)

Always working on finding new people who are willing to listen :)

Green Mango season is in full swing and I couldn't be happier :)

Pupusas are the best thing that have ever happened to me.

I love being a missionary.

I hope that you all are doing well and hope to keep hearing stories and to be part of your life!

Love you all!
Have the greatest of weeks!

Elder McFarland

Friday, February 3, 2017

A whole nother great week!

Last week was assignment money week, Elder McFarland does a lot of work BEFORE people get their money.

This week was assignment money week 2, Elder McFarland does a lot of work and solves people's problems AFTER people get their money.

It's a lot different being in the office than in the normal field. It's got all the same stuff with just a lot more... Stuff!

This week in our Area we have had a bit of a change. A little more focus on New Investigators turned out to be just what the Doctor ordered, and we have found several great potentials to go follow up with!

One is an old investigator named Edgardo. He attended church for a year! The hard part is it seems like he already kinda has an idea of what he chose to do, but we're going to give him a shot and see where things go!

One is a young man named Erick! We're going to try to teach his Uncle and Aunt that live with him too, but the first time we went, he was super positive and you could see a light in his eyes!

Another is half of a young couple. haha, well actually it's both of them, but one of them is already a member, just inactive. Kevin is the member, and Lorena is the investigator. She is expecting a baby, and she spends a lot of time reading the Bible and doing other reading.

So as you can see, we've got some good people to teach this next week! And of course we always have our more seasoned investigators Claudia and Jose Maldonado, and Dora! they are doing great, but they're progress is a little slower. No problem though, just teach as many people as you can!!!

Yesterday we had a unique experience. 

The AP's called us two days ago at night to let us know that a member in their ward had an uncle who was very sick. He is currently hospitalized in the Military Hospital(which just so happens to be in our area). The AP's asked us to go and give him a blessing so we did!

First time entering in to a hospital to visit someone who isn't a missionary. 

We walked in and there was a solemn spirit in the room. The wife of the sick man looked really shaken and worried, and her son showed us in and welcomed us. The member explained to them a little about who we were(the sick man and his family are NOT members) and we gave the man a blessing. I was the voice of the blessing, and I felt a very solemn spirit as we gathered around his hospital bed to give him a blessing. I don't think he is going to make it. In the blessing he was promised peace and love, and that he would be able to help his family from whichever side of the veil he was on! What a special experience!

We gave his wife a blessing to and promised to send the sister missionaries that are assigned to where she lives to go and visit her.

I felt like we were where we were supposed to be. 

So anyways, that's my takeaway for all of you this week. 

Just try to be where God wants you to be, when he wants you to be there :)

Love you all and hope you have the greatest of weeks!

Elder McFarland!

2/3/17 Photos