Week:16 Esmeraldas Ecuador
Companion: Elder Montesino, Honduras
|Jonathan and I. This dude is a great Latter-day Saint|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, October 2014
Dear Fam, Friends, and freaks,
Well I am still alive, but unfortunately BYU football is not. I don´t know the score but I do know that #hill4heisman is no longer. The BYU Cougars will always be in my heart but this year will be the same as any other year for the Men of Provo.
My week, however, was actually fantastic. My arms are slowly recovering from the trip to the Lighthouse. Lets begin with my week.
|My arms after the lighthouse incident.|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, September 2014
|Elder Wright, the only other missionary I've found I can talk BYU football with!|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, September 2014
Wednesday: We found a less active lady this day. She has been inactive for 35 years. Dang well no better place to start than with The Restoration.
Thursday: We taught a highscore of 5 lessons! Wahoo! Elder Montesino and I even had to go divisions with members of our ward because there was so many lessons! Five doesn't sound like alot but for the people of Esmeraldas it is a bunch!
Friday: We visited alot of members to encourage them to go to conference.
Saturday and Sunday: Conference, more to be said later.
|The view from the top of the lighthouse|
Esmeraldas, Ecuador September 2014
|Another view of Esmeraldas from the lighthouse|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, September 2014
Check up on Christian: Okay so here's the shake down on Christian. He did not pass his baptismal interview so he had to call President Richardson Sunday night. He has permission to be baptized this week. WAHOO! So all we have to do his get him in the FONT! P.S Most of the new gringos make fun of me because I don´t know what a baptismal font looks like. Well forget them! They are all fools. People just like to tease the ever cool Elder Kimball.
Conference Chatter: Okay people, I officially have watched 10 hours of conference and I recommend it because its great! Little description on how I watched conference. They have this place called the Gringo Room. Immediately, I thought of the Blue Room in LaVell Edwards Stadium at BYU. The Gringo Room was a close second to the Blue Room. Tons of American candy with tons of English! When I return I am going to start tailgating for Conference because... why not?! Heres My opinion on each talk with a few personal points thrown in.
|Watching Conference in the Gringo Room!|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, October 2014
Saturday Morning: We started off with our President Thomas S. Monson. I was a little saddened to not hear they were building a temple in Quito but whateves. The coolest feeling ever is when he said we have 88,000 missionaries around the world and you are one of those 88,000! WAHOO!!!!!
Next up was Boyd K. Packer. I am saddened to say that this will probably be one of his last conferences. I really appreciated his talk. Most of it being about Jesus Christ. He mentioned to share your testimony of the Savior. For our first lesson with investigators, we really only share our testimony of the Savior, so I thought it was cool when he said that.
He was followed by Lynn G. Robbins. I felt like this guy was the wildcard of the conference. His talk was great with starting off by saying "Which way do we face?". I loved the story about Joseph Smith and the lost 116 pages. Joseph learned to not to fear man over God. In this world, it is so easy to be more afraid of man than God. We can easily get wrapped up in our social lives and forget why we are really here. He also used the quote from some non mormon poet(I Forgot) " Courage is the beginning of every virtue". Don´t lower Gods standards to the standards of the world. Make your standards equal with Gods.
Then was Cheryl A. Esplin. This talk was centered around the sacrament and as we will learn later this seemed to be one of the themes of the Conference. I really like when she said the Aaronic priesthood holders represent Jesus Christ when giving the sacrament. Wow! Clay Buckle up bud!
Chi Hong (Sam) Wong was up next. He spoke in Cantonese. This was legit. Props to the church to letting peeps speak in their own language! I rate this as my favorite talk. I was easily able to apply it to myself with my Ward Council. I really like how he compared Mark 2:1-5 to the Ward Council. And come on the fool was speaking Cantonese!!! HAHA
P.S. I wonder if the prophet calls him Sam? HA!!
The Church then decided to throw in a talk that only super smart people will understand. D. Todd Christofferson brought that to the table Saturday morning with a talk I will definitely need to print out and read later. One thing I really liked is when he said "When things turn bad, we will try to shift the blame to someone else". That's the only thing that was simple enough for me to understand.
I was one of the people hoping that Dieter F. Uchtdorf would speak in German but unfortunatly he did not. We need to continually test our testimonies. Elder Uchtdorf even gave us a test that we can take to build our faith. Testimonies are not something you have or have not. Testimonies are ever changing. Everyday you either weaken or strengthen your testimony in this gospel. Here is the test:
1) READ the Word!
2) Ponder and think about what you just read. Pay attention to your thoughts and feelings. Those are how the Spirit speaks to us.
3) Orar. These means to pray. The Lord wants to converse with us simply ask and he will speak to us. This is a cycle people. Use it!
Dallin H. Oaks- I have to admit I don´t have much to say from this one. I need to go back and study it some more. All I got was "Love one another, as I have loved you."
Neil L. Anderson- I guess I can officially remember Elder Anderson as an apostle. I've always him and Quentin confused! He said alot of great stuff. "Opposition sends seekers of truths to their knees", "Spiritual questions deserve spiritual answers", "Adjust your own mask before helping others". From these I get if we know this Gospel and this Church are true, it will be so easy to share it. Why be embarassed to share the truth people? Find out for yourself first and your testmony will be so strong, you'll have to share it!
Tad R. Callister- All Parents Heads Up! Really enjoyed his story about Ben and Sonya Carson. The best quote of all conference from my own memory: "I do not know if the titles of the Bishop or Relief Society President will last after this life, but I do know that the titles of Husband and Wife, Father and Mother will." Love that! Freak people! Families are Eternal. This reminded me of something President Richardson said "I am first a husband, then a father and then a mission president." I really liked this talk!
Jorg Klebingat- This dude literally just machetted the whole conference center! Wow! just Wow man! Here are 6 points he made..... and than my reaction
1) Take responsibility for your spiritual well-being (Okay Okay. I can do that.)
2) Take responsibility for your physical well-being (Who you calling fat fool!?)
3) Embrace whole-hearted obedience (I am pretty sure that dude just called me fat..... I really need to start doing push-ups)
4) Become really really good at repenting (Did he just use the word really twice in the same sentence?)
5) Become really really good at forgiving (There it is again! Wait a second.... This guy reminds me of someone.)
6) Accept trials, setbacks, and surprises as apart of your mortal existence (hehehe... This guy sort of sounds like Kip from Napoleon Dynamite).
Sorry if I have ruined the importance of this man's well spoken talk. It really was great. Maybe a little too forward but hey its the last days. The man has to make a point, but he really does sound like Kip.
Eduardo Gavarret- We switched the channel to watch it in Spanish. My Spanish is still not the best so I can´t make a comment on this one. I got better on the next Spanish speaker.
Jeffrey R. Holland- I really feel like this was especially for my family. Mother and Father, I know you guys are very generous when it comes to giving back to the Lord, but I hoped this strengthened your testimony in giving. I know you guys have always taught me to give and I feel like I have heeded that council but I really like when Elder Holland said "God will be generous to you.". Wow! What a promise and what an opportunity our family has because of the Lord. I love you guys and this talk especially made me think of you! You guys really have taught me the Christlike attribute of charity. My favorite hymn "Because I have been given much" was ringing through my ears the whole time!
L. Tom Perry- LT brought this conference session home with a win. I really liked the quote he used from Gordon B. Hinckley about Mothers but I didn´t have time to write it down. He talked alot about Parents in this talk. So with that being the second talk about Parenthood, I am naming that a theme of the conference.
Priesthood Session: Okay so Priesthood sesh was probably the hardest session for me to get through on the terms of not crying. I immediately remembered going to these sessions with my father and taking notes together on our iPhones and iPads. Then I remembered all those nights of going to Al Dacos with Barry and Derek and that was sad. And I remember going to Smashburger with all my friends and Brother Starley and Dad and that was sad. And last but not least I thought of Wings Army (not that good of a wing place) with Marcel and watched one of the semi-final college basketball games to March Madness. Oooo Good times. Thought of you and Clay sitting there the whole time!
Quentin L. Cook- Okay what are the odds that Clays first PH session begins with a reference to Charles Schulz and Charlie Brown? Come on!!!! I actually started crying when he mentioned that because I know that this talk was especially written for my bro. This talk reminded of something one of my high-school football coaches said "The quality of your lives are directly proportionate to the quality of your choices". Which then reminded me of something Mother always said "The choices you make now will be the most important choices of the rest of your life." Clay, I know that you just turned twelve, but unfortunately Satan will be working on you so hard these next 6 years so stay strong man. And I believe that this talk has your name written all over it.
Craig C. Christensen- This guy was good. I liked when he said: "Now is the time and today is the day." It's cliché but I am going to say that today is the beginning of the rest of your life.
Dean M. Davies- This is like the second or third time that the Law of the Fast has been mentioned. I liked when he said to teach younger children to fast. I also like when he said "Support life, not lifestyle". But then that made me think it was a catch phrase for an anti-abortion group.
Dieter F. Uchtdorf- Okay this was yet another great talk. Its almost like we are listening to prophets, seers, and revelators of God! I really like when he used the question "Is it I?" to judge our ownselves. "Humble yourself in the sight of the Lord and He will lift you up." I have always been more on the prideful side than the humble side, so I really tried to take this one to heart. "True discipleship starts with the question "Is it I?" Wow!
Henry B. Eyring- Preparing worthy Melchizidek Priesthood holders was basically the theme of this PH sesh and I really feel like Elder Eyring did a great job of exemplifying that. We need to have trust in our Aaronic priesthood holder in order for him to grow. I really feel like my father helped me that when we were Hometeaching Companions. My dad was a great companion and I will forever cherish the trust, care and example he showed to me.
Thomas S. Monson- No better way to end a conference then with our beloved Prophet, President Monson. He started off with the story of the Mighty Bismark in which he said "Man can make marvalous machines, but not give them divine gifts of reason and judgement. Wow! He really helped us understand the importance of our decisions in this conference.
|My conference breakfast! Made it myself!|
Esmeraldas Ecuador, October 2014
Henry B. Eyring- Elder Eyring came through again but in this time more about Personal Revelation. I really liked when he said that in order to recieve divine revelation we needed to "Let virtue garnish thy thoughts".
Russell M. Nelson- "Man's ways are not the Lord's ways". Another talk sort of about keeping ourselves out of this world. Oh and I really loved when he talked about the power of sustaining our prophet and he basically ended with we love Thomas S. Monson.
Carol F. McConkie- This lady just freaked me out. She made me think that President Monson was about to make some big huge change with the way she was speaking. But she is right sometimes we might not see eye to eye with the Prophet. With the example of Elijah the Prophet and the widow, we truly need to "follow the prophet".
Robert D. Hales- I liked when he said to build our house on the rock of our Redeemer. Jesus Christ and Heavenly Father are two seperate beings but are unified in purpose. And then of course the great question "Do you remember the first time you knew there was a God?".
James J. Hamula- This dude just hammered everyone about the sacrament.(I am running out of time that's why I am shortening).
Thomas S. Monson- Okay so this was prime time for President Monson. "Walking as he walked is more important than walking where he walked". "Decisions determine destiny!" "The end of disobedience is captivity and death." This is really one of Monson's bests!
Out of time!
Okay so just remind me to do Sunday Afternoon next week. I hope you enjoyed my in-depth analysis of this 184th Semi-Annual October General Conference. I will keep doing my best and hopefully next week I will be sending pictures of me standing next to Christian in white.
Bailey- You should write me every week. You are 16-years-old!
Clay- Dude, I have to say I miss you alot bud. You are probably second on the list of me missing people. I really was so surprised when Elder Cook talked about Charlie Brown and laughed and cried really hard when I remembered this was your first PH Session.
Lexi- You just keep getting prettier and prettier!
Leah- How many goals you got in the season!?
Bella- I heard you are our fastest kid yet. I'll believe it when I see it.
Collins- Got a video of you sent to me. Come on that's just messed up! Don´t send me videos of my baby sister I have never seen!
Mom- I miss you and appreciate your very well written letters to me. I recieved the package with the shirt and the BYU almanac. Good thing I read the whole Almanac before BYU went down the toilet. Keep sending me packages! My bishop has asked me to get him some Texas Jerky. So if you don´t mind supplying that! I love you mom and appreciate all the life lessons you have taught me!
Dad- Missed you alot this past weekend. Thought alot about all our old conference traditions and relived alot of old BYU games when Elder Wright and I talked. I really do appreciate your letter this week. Elder Montesino is going home soon so it is really easy for him to be disobedient thinking his mission is over, but mine is only just beginning so I am trying to start off on the right foot. I love you Dad and speak of you often!
Well love you all and until next week...
Your Brother, Your Son, Your Missionary,