Monday, May 30, 2016

We did it!!

Managua: green trees, cauces (canals), and tin roofs
Familia y Amigos,

This week was a pretty long and stressful one, it was a lot of verifying possibilities but it all turned out great!!! We were blessed to have a couple baptisms in our area as well so that was fun too. Here’s how the week went.

Tuesday me and one of the APs, Elder Alcerro, went out to visit the possibilities.  We brought around some animo packages (liahona, a calendar, a picture of the temple, family proclamation to the world) to the people who had been interviewed and were getting ready for their baptisms. That went well and we got a couple more people interviewed as well! We actually got a couple married and baptized that day as well, it was kind of a jarron and it all turned out great.

Wednesday and Thursday we worked in the area a little as well, but we also went and verified some more people at night, lost a little time there in the area doing that.  It was the same story on Thursday. It was super hot though.  There is a thermometer in our area that said it was 46 degrees celcius (105.8 farenheit).  I know it wasn’t that hot, but it was blistering heat for the majority of the week.

Friday morning we were supposed to have a marriage in our area, but it didn’t end up working out so we had to replan it for Saturday. We were able to have a couple of good lessons and get some people committed to church because we knew Saturday was going to be crazy.

On Saturday we spent all day making sure everyone in the zone was good for baptisms and getting our own baptisms in the water.  I’ll attach some pictures of the baptisms we had, but it was a pretty successful weekend.  We had a marriage, and that baptism as we planned and it went pretty smoothly.  The lawyers here aren’t very reliable so last second we had to change lawyers and make sure that it was all going to happen. A couple of baptisms fell in the zone but we still had the hope to get the 40 we wanted.

Sunday morning was even crazier as Satan always makes the confirmations hard. We got the 40th person confirmed at 10:20am right at the end of a sacrament meeting in the zone. We were pretty happy about the result.  The mission ended this month with 306 baptisms, and got the goal of 300 which we had put.  It was a great month, we will see how June turns out but we are happy with our results :) Ex Elder Martinez also came and visited the ward on Sunday and it was great to see him as well!

Not much else happened this week, this week will be changes and Elder Merrill will be going home.  He has been an awesome companion (2 times) and I’m definitely going to miss him!  I hope that all of you have a great week, love you all!

Elder Hanson
In the foto from last week of the baptism,
one of those guys got baptized as well, but we didnt get a pic!
The baptisms

Monday, May 23, 2016

We can do it!!!

Familia y Amigos,

Well, this is the last week of the month and things are super crazy, we can hit 300!! and we can also break 40 in the zone. Things went pretty well this week, and nothing was too exciting but ill let you know what happened.

On Tuesday we just worked in the area, we didn’t have a lot of time to work last week so we were just trying to find some new people to teach, bring to church and to baptize.  We were knocking some houses and we found this super receptive lady who lives with her 5 kids, 3 of them are over 8.  She accepted a fecha well, committed to go to church and read the folletto we left.  So throughout the week we were able to meet her kids, put fechas with them and they read the folletto and went to church as well!  I love when people complete with their commitments!

Wednesday was just contacting in the area.  On Thursday we had consejo to see how the mission was doing, and how things are looking for the rest of the month.  It all went great because our zone is doing alright.  After we took some pics, always fun seeing the other ZLs. After consejo I went out with Elder Alcerro, one of the APs to get to know the possibilities in the zone.  We interviewed a family, and it was a good time.  We also had to go into the middle of nowhere down another canyon and it was quite the adventure hahah.

On Friday we had Zone Conference, one of the things that Sister Russell talked about in consejo was patience, so we talked a little with the zone about patience.  I liked one of the things she said, that patience is not just sitting around and waiting for things to happen, but it is working calmly through every situation and doing all we can.  Patience is an awesome attribute that I have definitely developed more here on the mission.

On Saturday we just got everyone committed to church, tried to find a couple new people and actually got a cool reference from one of the investigators we had.  He went to church as well.

Sunday morning we had a baptism that went smoothly and then got some investigators in church. After church Elder Merrill and I went and started the baptismal interviews.  We should have about 20 baptisms this week in the zone, and we were able to get 10 interviews done.  We are looking forward to this last weekend and we are praying all goes well!

Cool story to end my boring email this week, I have been talking to one of my converts from Bluefields, who got engaged to the missionary he was waiting for, and he says they’re going to the temple next month! :) I am stoked.

I hope that everyone has a great week, love you all!!

Elder Hanson

 The baptism

Monday, May 16, 2016

Locking down baps

Elder Merrill's Birthday
Familia y Amigos,

I hope that all of you were able to have a good week, celebrating a lot of birthdays at home and having a good time!  This week was nothing too special.  We lost a lot of time in the area because me and Elder Merrill were trying to get to know all of the possibilities that the zone has for baptism for the rest of the month.  We are working hard to get as many people as we can in the last 5 week month of President Russell, we could win the BBQ :)

Tuesday Elder Merrill and I went to Loma Linda to work with the sisters there.  We worked all day long, got to find a couple people, as well as get to know the people they have for baptism. We were able to help them to fix a couple things and they had a LOT of success in church on Sunday, which was great to see!

Wednesday we went to help some Elders out in the morning to try and get out a birth certificate so this lady can get baptized.  We had to go all the way up to the Crucero (the farthest south part of the zone) and see what we could do.  Anyway everything here is in books, they have like no computer system.  So when we got there, they told us that they only had the books from 2000 on, and the lady was born in the 70s.  Luckily the workers there knew her somehow (everyone knows everyone) and tuns out she isn’t inscrito. So she is like 40 years old and it is like she doesn’t even exist.  We lost a lot of time and the process to inscribe someone is really long and takes forever so its going to be a while before she can get married and baptized.  We had a little bit of time in the afternoon to teach some investigators.

On Thursday It was the day we had to work the most in the area, but there was also an activity at the church so we tried to bring some people there.  We also went and got to know some more of the sisters possibilities here in Altagracia that are doing great.

Friday we went around the whole zone and got to know some more people, but it was a bad day (probably because it was Friday the 13th hahah). I had this baptismal interview that was really really bad, a kid that was supposed to get baptized didn’t want to commit to stop drinking coffee, and another person told us that her mom told her that she couldn’t go to church anymore while I was getting to know people during divisions.  That kind of stunk, but to end out the night we met a cool family that is doing great for their baptism in another area.  Its crazy how we get to know so many people, their doubts, needs, and try to do everything we can to help them.  I know that I am not capable of doing it alone and the Lord is definitely here helping us.

On Saturday we had a baptism, of this kid I met the first day in the area.  It is a sealed family that went inactive a year ago and didn’t baptize their son.  We were able to reactivate the family and they are doing super awesome! We didn’t have any baptismal pants because there were also 2 other people that got baptized.  I had to squeeze into some super tiny ones hahah.

Sunday was Elder Merrill’s Birthday, and the only thing he really wanted was investigators at church and it happened :)  We bought him a cake to celebrate. They broke eggs and it was a great time.  That night we went and did some baptismal interviews and got some more people ready for this week. Super crazy week but it flew through.

This morning we played some basketball and then we ate some Mcdonalds, that was fun.  This week we have Consejo and preparing for the last week of this month which will be really stressful but I know we can break 40 baptisms in the zone!!! It would be awesome.  I love you all lots, have a great week!

Elder Hanson


Monday, May 9, 2016

Interviews, Happy Mother's Day!

Mother's Day Selfie

Familia y Amigos,

It was great to be able to talk to you guys yesterday, everyone looks so grown up!  But this week was a pretty good one.  Before I get started I had a special request and don’t want you all to forget Owen’s, Maddy’s, and Riley’s birthdays this week. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Anyway so Tuesday was spent getting some things ready for the interviews with President Russell.  On Monday here they had a big SOY (EFY) activity and they didn’t clean up... the usual so we had to clean the chapel as well so it was presentable.

Wednesday we had the interviews, that was a good time.  Our zone is doing well so there wasn’t much to talk about.  I had a pretty quick interview with President Russell and it went really well.  We were able to talk about my progress and he said some nice things.  My interview with Pres. and Elder Merrill also went really well and he is happy with the progress of the zone.

Thursday we just had a normal day of work.

Friday I had to give the class at District meeting and that was chill, talked a little bit about verification and it went well.

Saturday we helped the sisters out with their baptism, they had an investigator that didn’t stop drinking coffee but in the interview I was able to find the reason why, super awesome and she committed to stop drinking and got baptized! It was great to see.

Sunday was a normal day, we got some people to church and it all went well.  It was awesome to talk to you guys and see you all! This email was super lame, but not much really happened so whatever!  

Love you all,

Elder Hanson

Nicas put the root beer in the beer aisle at Walmart!
At consejo last week!

Monday, May 2, 2016

Here comes the rain

Familia y Amigos,

It was another good week here in the heat of Managua, things went pretty well and we had an all right week so here’s how it went.

Monday night was cool, we were just looking for some new people to teach and me and my companion were both walking and at the same time we turned around to go and contact this lady.  We didn’t know how positive she was going to be, but she told us to come back the next day. Tuesday we showed up and her whole family was there, we put a fecha with them and committed them to read a folleto (pamphlet). Anyway long story short she read 2 folletos and some of the Book of Mormon and went to church, so that was cool! The spirit does guide if we listen!

Tuesday and Wednesday we just contacted. The rain also started up as well which was pretty nice.  It cools down while it rains but when the sun comes out it just gets worse.  Managua is known for flooding and it gets raining pretty hard for a couple of hours and then chills out. The rain storms should be like an every day thing from now on so looking forward (kind of) to that.

Thursday we had consejo (leadership conference), we thought that it was going to be Elder Merrill’s last one but turns out we are going to have another one in the end of May so that was kind of a bummer.  We showed up a little early and met Elder Copeland and Elder Heileson there so we could chill for a little before it all started.  All went well at consejo, Our big goal for this month is that as a mission we break 300 baptisms.  Our zone is one of the bigger ones so they are relying on a lot of baptisms from us. We have a goal of 50 baptisms between our 24 missionaries so pray that we can reach it please!  We need all the help we can get.

Friday we had Zone Meeting and that was fun to see all of the Elders and Sister there. We have a pretty fun zone, I’m not really with any people I have been with before in the zone.  Sister Russell at consejo talked about 8 things we can do to be better missionaries and we shared those 8 things with them.  We just worked the rest of the day trying to find people.

Saturday we were blessed to have a baptism.  It was a little later at night, but all went well.  She was the cousin of a recent convert and she had the biggest desire to get baptized, so let’s hope she stays active! Everyone we had planned was able to get baptized in the zone so that was great.

Sunday the water went out, so that was the excuse of the day to not go to church.  Every time that it rains here they shut off the water, it doesn’t make sense to me but whatever!! We had an off week but the majority of our investigators are still progressing for this month.  I am excited to see what we can do. Thanks for all you do, love you guys lots! This week we will also have interviews so lets hope all goes well there too!

Elder Hanson