March 30, 2015 – Week 24

Well yesterday was the transfer day.  I’m staying in my first area with my companion, Elder Ortiz. Hopefully you got all those pics that Sharai sent you! She actually really enjoys talking to you Mom. I’m in my area still – La Morita – and there are a couple of people that we have been seeing progress and this transfer we are going to hopefully have the opportunity of baptizing about 8 people. That is our goal and the Lord has been helping us a lot. My companion is awesome and we get along really well which is awesome. Depending on this transfer after this 6 weeks I might be training or I might be a leader here in the mission. My learning and mi español have been skyrocketing this past couple of weeks. I remember my goal of wanting to be fluent by general conference but that is almost impossible. jajaja I’ve been praying everyday that I will be able to understand general conference and especially understand the message from the prophet. I’ve actually never been this excited to listen to general conference before. It’s pretty awesome and I can’t wait!! It’s awesome that Easter is on the same day.

Anyways, this week has been okay for us we actually will able to teach more lessons this week than this transfer which is awesome. we just weren’t really able to have a lot of them with a member present! Speaking of that, I hope you guys are able to go out with the missionaries and especially Jordan and Lauren with the sister missionaries. How is the ward doing back home and the missionaries?

Not much happened this week out of the ordinary so my message might be short, but I hope everything is going awesome. How is Jordan’s work going? Lauren’s? Ask Jordan how that activity went with the guns. Love all of you and awesome that I’m winning in the bracket challenge and awesome that Jeff Gordon is doing a little better in the races. I had about 4 dreams this week about NASCAR! Les Amo y Les Quiero. Cuidanse

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March 23, 2015 – Week 23

Hey Mom and Other family members that will be reading this message,
     That’s awesome that you have been talking to some of the people here in my ward! Both of those people live really close to us and they are awesome. Tonight we are going over to the Chavez family for family home evening with an investigator. Sharai asked me to give the message last night and I didn’t really know what to prepare, but I have been pondering on what I could talk about with her and her family and this investigator Carolina. There was a conference talk that I printed out while I was in the MTC and it is from the prophet. It’s called Ponder the Path of Thy Feet if you want to look it up. It’s a wonderful talk and I’m going to talk to them about the importance of following in the same footsteps of Jesus Christ. Then after I’m going to invite her to baptism and hopefully everything goes well and they all can be touched by the spirit.
     This is the last week of the transfer and me and my companion have a lot of goals to reach. I don’t remember if I told you but last week we had 26 new investigators and this week we only had 13, but it’s still pretty good, The president has been seeing our goals and our efforts and he’s been pretty pleased. Hopefully I get to stay here in my sector one more transfer because we are going to have about 10 baptisms for the month of April and one family of five! But unfortunately for that family of five (the Sanchez family) the mom got bored to death in Relief society so she doesn’t come to church anymore, but the others do. The mom doesn’t really want anything to do with the gospel, but hopefully all that can change. But I feel for her because if I went to relief society for the first time I would get bored and quit coming as well!! jajaja. The zone leaders and my companion (who is the district leader) have been writing to the president and saying how good of a missionary I am, but sometimes I don’t feel so great and I even told the president about that, but he told me that I need to have a little more patience and that nothing worth knowing comes over night.  So I felt a little bit better and I told him that I feel good about everything now, he said that I’m going to be a leader pretty soon because the mission is moving really fast. I feel like I’m moving pretty fast too I have over 5 months in the mission and time is really flying by!
     Also we got a great announcement the other week that I forgot to share with y’all! The temple open house is 13Nov-28Nov, the cultural activity is on the 12Dec in the Xolos stadium and on the 13Th of December the Prophet Thomas. S. Monson is going to dedicate the temple!!!!!!!!!! I’m freaking stoked and I will be able to be here for it! We have been telling every one about it and it is pretty awesome. Anyways, hope everything is going good and awesome and tell everyone that I love them! And tell dad to write to me because he hasn’t written to me in like 3 weeks jaja, anyways love you! (:
Darin Christmas 2014 Darin & Comp

March 16, 2015 – Week 22

     This week has been pretty well for me. This week I bought my bike and me and my companion have been killing it on the bikes. We bought them on Monday and have been pretty much using them all week. At first I was bien cansado(very tired) after using them and just dripping with sweat after using them. It’s been hot as flip here – it’s been in the upper 80s and lower 90s all week and I’ve lost a couple of pounds. But I think I’ve gained a little back because I found this dope candy shop called Dulfi. They sell cheap candy american and mexican and it’s dirt cheap. I bought one of those huge bags of Peanut butter M&Ms for like $4 and in the states it’s about $10. Anyways, that shop is awesome but don’t worry mom, I’m not just eating candy!
     This week me and my companion found 26 new investigators and we have been teaching all of them. Not really any of them are escogidos (i dont know what this word is in English but it’s like found investigators that the Lord put in our path) except this one family bien suave (very awesome) and they came to church and they loved it. It’s a family of 5.  If I’m in this sector for 4 more weeks we will be baptizing them because I invited them to be baptized and they accepted.  It was great!
     Ask Jordan how the gun shooting activity went and how his work is going and here is some advice for him and Lauren when they start their job:
“Jordan and Lauren here’s some advice from your older brother who’s had a job for about 5 years. When you get paid, don’t spend it.  When you have money and you see something that you really like, don’t buy it (if you really really really need it, buy it on Amazon or Ebay where things are really cheap). You will thank me for this advice when you are about 18 and you’ll have about a couple years of saved money in your account and you will thank me. Trust me!! I blew a lot of money on stuff I didn’t need, (the NASCAR and fishing stuff are things that I needed), but there are other things that I didn’t need.  Also Jordan this part is for you –  don’t get a girlfriend! She will burn your wallet dry, trust me on that and you can ask Paw Paw and Uncle Brian about thier experiences with that.  I would say ask dad, but his first girlfriend was Mom jaja! Anyways there’s some words of cuidado(caution)”
     This week the bishop asked me and my companion if we could give a talk in sacrament meeting.  He told us Saturday night at 5 o’clock…. I prepared all night and we gave a talk he said we could pick whatever we wanted to share with the ward. I talked about every member a missionary. I was very nervous before to give this talk because I didn’t have time to prepare it, but when I got up the biggest peace came upon me and I was filled with the spirit. I was able to give about a 10 minute talk on strengthening the ward in thier missionary work. Like the scriptures say “the spirit fell down upon me in a form of a dove.” After the talk everyone said that I gave a really good talk and my Spanish was really good too. I felt really good and now I actually like giving talks. I would like to give one every sunday!
     This week there were 120 in the ward! That’s the most that there has been since I got here in the mission. I’m actually sad to leave all the relationships and the people I’ve met here. There’s 2 more weeks in the transfer and my companion says to me that I’m going to leave here and go to a different area, but who knows. I almost have 4 months here in the Barrio Terrazas and in my sector La Morita (or little berry). Also I’ve been telling some people here in the ward to add you on Facebook mom.  The last person that added you is a returned missionary, she just came back from Mexico City and she comes with us to a lot of appointments and gives us a crap ton of references from other people, its really great!
     I would challenge all of you to go out with the missionaries at least once a week and I can promise you that it will bless your life more and more and it will bless our family. Also, all the neighbors in our neighborhood give them as references to the missionaries and go with them to go teach them! Encourage Jordan to go out with them more and more.
     I’m doing great here and I’m learning more and more everyday. I hope everything goes well this week and it’s a better week! I’m sorry I haven’t been able to send photos I just don’t have time because the computers here don’t send them fast, but send me pictures i love them!!!!!
     Les Amo muchisimo, there’s a bunch of people here that have said Hi to yall! Hermana Chavez said that you are really beautiful Mom! Madie, you too jaja. Love y’all. DUECES.

March 9, 2015 – Week 21

This week all I have been really doing in my personal study time is writing all the points of the doctrine out until all of it is stuck in my head. It’s pretty time consuming, but it helps me become better. Also I stopped reading anything that I have in English. I only read my Spanish books and I stopped the English so I can learn it quicker and it helps. Here in Mexico I can pretty much understand anything that is said, but it’s hard to speak my thoughts sometimes because I don’t know how to say it, or I don’t know the way the sentance goes to say it. You know what i mean, but I feel like I’m pretty good at my Spanish. This one girl told me that it was really good.

     Anyways once again I’m short on time and I can’t send any pictures which sucks because we had a baptism on Saturday and it was awesome. His name is Diego and he’s 14 years old. He was the only one that was baptized. His mom and uncle that lives with him pretty much rejected us, but he stayed strong and he’s a light to his family. Funny thing about this baptism is that there is a boiler that has gas and when I went to light it the gas was already turned on and that mother light up a huge fireball! I burned my hand pretty good and all my hair on my arm is gone and my eyebrows are messed up and the hair on my head got scorched.  I didn’t get seriously hurt, but that scared me when that happened.  I’m fine now and I didn’t have to go to the hospital. It sucks because every time we have a baptism I end up getting hurt. Hopefully, the last one that I have in my mission isn’t going to kill me!
     We haven’t found bikes yet, but hopefully this week we can find some. I love you and I don’t have time to write more.  Love you!

March 2, 2015 – Week 20

     I have a couple of questions: can you send me some more fishing pictures and of me shooting my gun? People here don’t believe me when I tell them that I have a gun and I like to go shooting.
     Anyway, I’m not doing so well. I don’t fell like I’m helping anyone. It’s really hard and sometimes I feel completly worthless and helpless and a lot of it is the language and the other large part of it is the doctrine.  I just never have studied any of Preach My Gospel or the Book of Mormon before, and I feel like I’m light years behind everyone else. It’s really difficult. I’m not able to finish the Book of Mormon this month like I wanted to.  I have to stop and study Preach My Gospel everyday because I’m really behind. The other part is that my trainer, my last companion, didn’t teach me crap even though he was the district leader as well. My new companion is helping me, but it’s really hard.
     Also, I felt really bad about spending money so now I’m not going too anymore for the rest of my mission. I’ll just use what I get from the mission money. I’m eating pretty well, I think.  I started doing this new thing the other day when you only eat at lunch as much as you can and then just eat lunch every day and nothing else except like fruit and veggies, and not drinking soda. My zone leader told me about it and this one elder lost 80 pounds and I need to lose like 50 so I can have more energy to do all this walking.
     This week we started visiting this family, the Sanchez family. The husband and the wife are in the middle of a divorce and their kids are 20 and 22 and pretty much do their own thing. They live in the house with them, but the husband Javier lives in a different house. When we visited them for the first time they were having a crap ton of problems and the wife, Gabriella was crying, like balling her eyes out, the whole entire hour and a half that we were there. We told them about the Book of Mormon and that they should read it and taught them about prayer.  After that we left. The next day we went to go visit them and they were both happy! It was awesome! They said that they prayed and prayed together at night before they went to bed and that they have read the chapter that we left for them and then we left after that.  Anyway,  the next day we went to go visit them again and we saw that the husband, Javier, was out side of her apartment and she lives on top, and he was in his truck and we asked him what was up and he said that he went there that morning and started yelling at her and stuff like that so she kicked him out if the house and he was there since 3pm.  When we got there it was about 8:30 p.m. He was there for over 6 hours. We talked to him and then after talked to her and then we went back down and taught him about the repentence process and especially about the part about asking forgiveness. We then took him up to his wife’s apartment and he asked them to forgive him and he even asked his son to forgive him and it was an awesome experience. Then Sunday morning Gabriella called us and said she couldn’t come to church because after we had left saturday night Javier came back and started yelling at her and hitting her again. Then Sunday morning around 8 a.m.  she told us that Javier came back and did the same thing and she had to call the cops on him and I think he got taken to jail. Later last night we visited Gabriella with the whole Relief Society presidency and it was great. We helped her get back up and smiling and to stregthen her faith! It was pretty sad and crazy hearing all that went on with them, but it is okay we’ll continue to visit them and eventually baptize them because they accepted our invitation to baptism which was pretty awesome.
     We have another baptism this Friday – his name is Diego and he’s 14.  We have been visiting him for a while and we were teaching his mom and his uncle but they dropped out and so now we are just teaching him. It’s cool because this Friday he is getting baptized and it’s awesome!
     Also the other week i forgot to mention, i saw someone get stabbed, i didnt see the assault I just saw the dude screaming on the ground with like 20 people around him, but it was crazy. Love yall! That’s awesome that JJ won and Harvick was close! Let me know what’s up with the Kobalt 400 in Vegas … I think that’s week 3. Anyway, love you! And I’m joining Madie in her fast on Wednesday so that she can go on a mission! Our president told us about the ipads but he said no one is probably going to get them here in Tijuana because some missionaries got robbed and they robbers took 20 pesos ($1.40) and their brick cell phone haha so he said no one is probably going to get them here in Tijuana, pero quien sabe!
      Oh and the bus thing, you just give them 10 pesos and hop on. There are no receipts or anything but we get 300 pesos a month for transportation and we use about 900 pesos a month, but I’ll deal with it.

February 23, 2015 – Week 19

This week has been actually pretty good. My companion is pretty sweet, he is from Oaxaca Mexico and he’s our district leader. He’s a great missionary who knows our purpose and together we work pretty freaking hard and it’s really tiring. haha We come home everyday freaking tired and worn out! It actually feels pretty good, but we’ve been struggling. We have been being obedient and doing all that we can to find new investigators.  This week we have contacted over a 100 different people and the there is hardly any fruits from our labors.  We weren’t able to get any to accept baptism dates or to come to church. It’s really difficult, but yesterday we asked the bishop to give us a blessing and he did. Me and my companion still are happy and are in a good mood and we just have to work twice as hard this week to find more people and to find people that are great, but I know that the Lord is gonna help us find these people.

Anyways that’s awesome, Mom, that you are chosing what you think is the best for the family and to have a set amount of income every month and to have time for the family.  The Lord promises us our well being when we seek his counsel and choose to follow that counsel. Like having time to be together as a family. Because the family is a refuge from the daily world or the world outside. When we build up a refuge that is strong around the foundations and teachings of Christ we are blessed.
Anyways, I got the Valentine’s package and I loved it! And yeah, sorry about the money thing. I’m not using the card anymore only I was using it because I was really short on money and we take the bus a lot here and all my money really goes to transportantion and it’s pretty difficult but I’ll only use my misison money that I get. After I buy the bike I wont use anymore of it! Sorry.
That’s awesome that Kyle Busch broke his leg! I can’t stand him and he sucks. Anyways that’s kinda awesome! Holy crap I can’t believe that happened to Kurt Busch that’s freaking scary! You’re right about that Dad, he’s definitely out, but that’s crazy and it sucks that Jeff Gordon got caught in that pile up, but oh well. I can’t believe that Kentucky is undefeated! But that is awesome! Send me a bracket and I can scan it here and send it to you! Then you can put it on the ESPN thing with the family! Dad, that’s awesome that you were able to ordain 2 new people to high priests! Hope everything is going well with work and what not.
Anyways this week was pretty well and me and my companion have been working very hard!
Tell everyone hi for me! Love all of you.
-Elder Wilkes