Monday, June 29, 2015


Saying goodbye in Bluefields
Familia y Amigos,

Like they say here in Managua, que nota?  I hope everyone is doing well and had a good week.  I ended up having changes and I am now here in Trinidad 1, which is in Ciudad Sandino Managua!  The city is northwest of Managua but still part of the city.  My companion is Elder Salmeron, who is my brother because Elder Sacalxot trained him too, and things are going really good.  He is from Honduras.  This is the ex area of Elder Olsen from my group, and he ended up going to Bluefields, so we just made a little switch.  I'm the Distrct Leader here and there are 8 people in my district, including me.  The ward is super cool here and we have a couple of people preparing for baptism so that is good!  I'll let you all know what went down this week.

On Tuesday we got the call for cambios, packed up, said goodbye, and got on the panga.  Elder Soifua and I both had changes so we left together.  We got to Juigalpa at like 10:00 pm and we didn't get to bed until really late because we were helping Elder Roney pack.  I only got like 2 hours of sleep because Juigalpa is super far from Managua so we had to get up early to get on the bus to go to Managua.

On Wednesday we had changes.  They changed up change meeting and it isn't as fun.  The presidencia de area started getting more strict on change meetings, so now when we get there they just tell us what zone we will be going to.  You get on the bus, and they just drop you off at your area and you meet your companion there.  There isn't as much suspense, and it isn't as much time together with all of the other missionaries but there's nothing I can do!  This also means that you will not be seeing any charges at McDonalds for change meetings, they go too fast.  When I got there, we got to work and Elder Salmeron showed me around a little.

Thursday until Saturday I was just getting to know the area and finding new people to teach.  Sunday we had an alright day. All of the people that we had planned on teaching kind of fell through, so we are going to work hard this week to find new people.  We might have a baptism next week!

Today we played some soccer as a zone and just hung out.  It was nice to have a real p-day after 6 months of being isolated.  All is going well for me here, and I'm enjoying everything.  I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Elder Hanson

My new companion

Monday, June 22, 2015

Happy Father's Day, Cambios Week

Rooftop Selfie
Familia y amigos,

What is going on?  I hope everyone had a super good week there at home, and everyone is enjoying the hot weather.  Just imagine that with humidity, and then go for a walk at like 2 o’clock and you will know how I feel! Haha, but I hope everyone is doing well.  Things this week in Bluefields were pretty good!  We are still trying to find some people to teach, but the week wasn’t too bad.

I first want to start out and say Happy Father's Day to my dad and all the other dads out there.  Thanks for being so awesome and I love you lots dad!

Tuesday was probably the worst day of the week.  We had a bunch of people planned which was good, it meant we wouldn’t be contacting as much.   But what ended up happening as we went to each of the houses, they all ended up not being very promising.  They were all investigators that we had been teaching for a little while, but who weren’t progressing very well.  Unfortunately, we ended up dropping 5 people that day because it didn’t seem to us like they were going to progress.

Wednesday we kept working with the other people we had.  We have a couple cool people that we are trying to work with to get them baptized in July, but Satan always likes to get in the way.  We are working hard with them.  One of our converts cooked us lunch and it was super delicious.  They cooked something called “sopa marisco”, it is just a seafood soup.  It was really good, had crab, shrimp, and some other things.  It is kind of a traditional dish here and by far my favorite. It’s really good if it has lobster too, but the lobster season here opens up the 1st of July. We actually showed the Restoration with a family on Wednesday night and the dad of the family started crying.  It was a nice spiritual experience, but he works on Sundays so he probably won’t be able to attend church and progress towards baptism.  They aren’t married, but his wife is cool and has been coming to church with us.

Thursday the zone did an activity, where the whole day you were just supposed to contact.  We decided on an area to contact, and went to work.  But lucky us, the area we decided to contact was just straight testigos (Jehovah Witnesses).  That made it a pretty interesting day.  The testigos have pretty closed minds.  We had a cool lesson with some testigos, and they agreed and understood everything we taught up until Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon.  They are too hard hearted to ask for themselves.  I think that we can apply this into our lives, by asking ourselves daily, "Am I open to the will of my Heavenly Father?" , or are we closing our hearts to the daily revelation He can give us?  I know that if we open our hearts, and humble ourselves, He will guide us in what we need to do.

This week there are cambios (transfers), and my time here in Bluefields (almost 6 months) could be coming to an end.  If you see the charge at McDonalds, you know I had changes.

I love you all lots!

Elder Hanson

Sopa Marisco

Sopa Marisco with Elder Passey

Monday, June 15, 2015

Roney's Back, Part 2 and Contactandooooo!

Elder Roney is back...for exchanges.

Familia y Amigos,

Que tal?  I hope everyone had a good week, we are enjoying ourselves here in Bluefields on this great P Day!  Once again, not really anything happened this week.

Elder Roney came here on Tuesday for his second trip back here.  A zone leader usually comes every month, so it was his turn to come since he is still there in Juigalpa as a zone leader.  We did some divisions, and things went pretty well.  My area is kind of dry right now so we didn’t have a ton of cool investigators to show him.  He was happy with the work we are doing so that’s all that matters. We also got to visit some of the converts we had together so that was really cool!  Sorayda is doing alright (the first one I had with Roney) and Alfredo and Teresa kind of disappeared into the mountains.  Alfredo actually called our phone last night at midnight but I was fast asleep.  We also visited Ayoleth because Roney and I were the ones that taught her everything.  She is doing well too, coming as often as possible.

The rest of the week we were just kind of contacting.  We don’t really have a ton of investigators so we are working to find some new people.  A couple of members have given us some references that we are working with to get progressing, but it is the usual fight to get them to church.  Here in Nicaragua, almost anyone will listen to your message if you tell them it is about Jesus Christ, but the problem is getting them to church, and actually reading.  We are working to find people that will actually complete with commitments, and come to church with us.

That is all that is really going on.  The converts we just barely baptized are doing well, especially Marcos.  He is getting a calling and everything, and I think he is going to be receiving the priesthood this week, which is super awesome.  Everything is going well, and I love you all a lot!  Have a great week!

Elder Hanson

Our house!
Mamones, one of my favorite fruits
I found eggnog here...

Monday, June 8, 2015

Your Average Week In Bluefields...

Familia y Amigos

How is it going?  I hope everyone is doing well. This email probably wont be too long as it was just another normal week here in Bluefields.  Things are going well with everyone and we are just looking for some new people to teach!

This week I did divisions 2 times with Elder Soifua and Elder Hernandez.  They have been struggling a little bit in their area, so I decided to go and help them out a little.  They really don’t have anyone progressing toward baptism for June, but they were blessed and baptized 2 people on Saturday.

Other than that, me and Elder Passey were just contacting in my area.  We had a lot of success and investigators last month, which means we didn’t really put a lot of time into finding new people.  We had a couple of people that we were teaching, but they all kind of dropped off as they started to not keep their commitments and stopped coming to church.  Oh well!  That‘s the cycle of the mission!  We are still working hard and have seen the Lord bless us in our work.

We especially saw blessings yesterday when we were bringing people to church.  On Saturday when we went around to the investigators to remind them about church and pretty much everyone bailed.  We didn’t have a ton of people committed to come to church which was going to make Sunday a rough day.  We woke up early to go out and get everyone up and getting ready for church so we could pass by to bring them.  After we had woken people up and passed by the second time to bring them, everyone was gone, and their houses were all locked up (even though every Nicaraguense uses the excuse that they can’t lock up the house, makes no sense).  Anyway after all that, there were only like 2 people that we were actually able to bring to the church in a taxi, so we just decided to go with them to the church.  When we got there one of the people we had committed to come decided to walk and another one showed up after the sacrament.  I don’t know how it happened but we ended up with 9 people attending church.  It was awesome.  Not all of them were really investigators but whatever!  It was a blessing they were there.

Another cool story…About a month ago, if you all remember, we went back to Juigalpa for zone meeting.  We worked in that area with the zone leaders for 2 days and during those 2 days I pretty much just contacted and put fechas (baptismal dates) with everyone.  We found a couple of cool people, but all I did was put a fecha and then leave.  Turns out that one of the people I put a fecha with ended up getting baptized yesterday!  It was cool hearing that the work I did while I was there actually helped them out. 

That’s about all I got for this week.  The investigator that got baptized but didn’t get confirmed last week ended up getting confirmed this week, so that was good!  I hope all of you have a great week, love you all!

Elder Hanson

Elder Soifua and I taking a quick Coke break...

The rain coming in...

Monday, June 1, 2015

Mayo Ya, June Is Already Here?

 Eating a pico

Familia y Amigos,

Que tal?  How is everyone doing?  Things are going pretty well here in Bluefields.  We had a successful week, even though there weren’t a lot of people in their houses, and we ended up baptizing a couple of people too!  I’ll tell you a little more about it.

But first I want to give a B-day shoutout to Eli, on the 5th!  Happy Birthday E!

This week here in Bluefields was called Mayo ya, or palo de mayo.  It was pretty much just a week full of parties and people being stupid.  It was the most crazy at the end of the week.  There was a big parade on Friday with a lot of dancing and a million people in the street.  I got a couple of pictures so that was cool.

We had a baptism on Friday night that was kind of scary.  The person that got baptized was out with her family all day and told us that she was going to meet us at the church at 5:45 for her baptism at 6.  She had completed with every single compromiso (commitment) before so we trusted her, because the majority of people don’t really complete with compromisos.  Anyway, at 5:45 she wasn’t there.  We called her and her phone was turned off.  I thought it was going to fall through.  We decided to go look for her in the hoards of people and found her walking to the church.  So she got baptized.

On Saturday it kind of died down because it was Dia de las Madres (Mother’s Day) here in Nicaragua.  The church had an activity and a lot of mothers came out.  I’d say there were like 100.  It was awesome to see all the moms out.  We also had 3 baptisms on Saturday that all went through.  There is always a problem with every baptism.  This time it was that the branch president showed up a little late, but everything else went well.

With one of our investigators we have had a lot of spiritual experiences (he’s wearing the yellow shirt in the pictures).  The thing that we see the most often is that he always used to be super sad, didn’t know what to do with his life and stuff.  But he always has a smile now and is so much more happy.  If he keeps coming to church he will be an awesome convert!

On Sunday it was rainy in the morning, which made it a little hard to go and get people for church, but we pushed through.  One of the confirmations fell through because the aunt of one of our baptisms forced her to go to her church.  Basura (garbage).  We’ll be working to get her confirmed this next Sunday!  The asistencia (attendance) was horrible in church, only 75.  It is usually around 140.  Due to the parties and everything, and Mother’s Day, nobody really came out.  It’s kind of sad that the asistencia (attendance) at the activity on Saturday was more than at church on Sunday.

Other than that things are going well.  I am doing great and loving it here.  I love you all and hope you all have a great week!  Here are the baptisms and some other photos!

Elder Hanson

Our baptism on Friday night

Our baptisms on Saturday...