Sunday, March 23, 2014


I love this county.  You can ride in the back of a truck going about 50 miles an hour on a very busy highway, and no one even cares.  Heck, we even saw the police doing the same thing, but I couldn´t get a picture.

Elder Josec and I with Antoni and Mishel, who are recent converts, and so awesome!

We found a Mariachi Band with some members, and of course we had to take a picture.

The Ochoa family, one of the coolest families in the ward.

Changes!!!...Oh Wait

      Hello Family!  This week there are changes!  And guess who has changes?!?..  Not me.  Jaja it´s been really weird for me.  I´ve been in Chiquilajá for 5 changes now, which is about the maximum for the mission.  But I guess I´ll be here for 6!  Go figure!  It´s a great area, I love the members and everything.  And, because we thought that I was going to have changes, we got a lot of people prepared for the supposed new guy that was going to come in.  But now I´ll be able to work with them, and it´s going to be great.  Although I´m the second missionary in years that has been in an area for more that 5 changes, I´m stoked.

     Our most progressing investigators so far are Lorenzo and María.  They are the nicest older couple you will meet this side of Guatemala.  Just amazing.  They only have one problem though... They know that this church is true.  They´ve prayed about it, and they know.  They are just afraid of leaving the church they are attending now.  They feel like they owe it to the church they are going to, because they´ve been going there for so long.  We´ve been trying to explain it to them that they owe it to God if they know this is the truth, but they don´t seem to understand.  We´ve also shared Matthew 13:45-46.  It´s been kind of a real test for me, becuase we can´t seem to make them understand.  But they know, and I´m sure they´ll act.  We´re just going to keep working with them.

     We had a really good lesson this week with some new investigatores named Lester and Ingrid.  They are a couple who have had a lot of contact with missionaries, and when they said that they had heard the message before, we wondered how we were going to go at the lesson.  But we just decided to go at it really slow, and make sure that they understand every little detail.  It was really slow for me, but I felt the Spirit stronger than in other lessons.  We made sure to ask a LOT of questions to make sure that they understood.  And we were getting responses like, "Wow, I didn´t realize that before." or, "That makes a lot of sense."  Follow the spirit, and you can´t go wrong.

     Which brings me to my next point.  I´ve been studying a lot in Ch. 10 of PMG about asking inspired questions.  We had been having a lot of problems with teaching investigatores, and the next lesson they had forgotten almost everything.  The good thing about questions is that we can let the people teach themselves.  When we ask a question guided by the spirit, they tend to think about it more, and they get more out of it.  It´s not enough, I´ve realized, to just teach the doctrine, and ask if they understood.  We need to do better, and the Spirit can help us to just that.

     We got hit with a stroke of bad luck this week with some investigators.  With Jorge, who was planning on getting baptized at the end of this month, he´s going to have to go to the capital for a sickness that he has.  So he´s going to be gone for some weeks.  Also, Antonio´s going on vacation for two weeks.  So that´s two progressing investigators gone for a while.  But we´ll be sure to get back with them when they get back.

     A lot of things this week have made me realize how much I love the people here in Guatemala.  They are so loving.  They are so quick to accept total strangers, let them into their house, and make new friends.  It really makes the work here a lot eaiser.  And I´ve basically been living with Latinos for 20 months, and I´ve been loving it.  I´m thinking that maybe this culture will inpact what I will do later in life, but we´ll see!

     So yeah, I´m still here, but excited to work with all the people we´ve been finding.   The mission is amazing, and I couldn´t even think about being anywhere else.  This really is the Lord´s work, and I am a part of it.  Let´s hasten the work!  Until next time!

     - Elder Stuart

     P.S. Ether 12:4

Sunday, March 16, 2014


This is a famous monument right here in Xela.  I´ve been here for about 7 months and until now I´m taking a picture here...
A menos activo made us Tortas Mexicanas last week, and they were SO good!
A member in our ward just left on her mission to Mexico.  She was really pilas with us, always helping us out.  So it´s sad to see her go, but we know that she is going to be an excellent misisonary!
Some member in our ward makes a Hounduran food named Baleadas, and they are SO GOOD!!!   So we dedicated a song to them.
So...  They celebrate something here that you call Carnival.  It´s like the carnival in Brasil, but not as big.  But the thing is people jsut walk around with flour and throw it at everything that moves.  We got caught in the cross-fire, so we figured to just finish it off.  And this is what we ended up looking like.
Elder Josec and I in the aftermath of Carnival.
Directly after Carnival, some member asked us to help them move.  So here´s me trying to be as chapín as possible.  It´s amazing how many weird looks I got.
Just your typical Guatemalan woman waiting for a bus.
Another regular occurance in Xela.  (By the way, I´m the bomb at taking pictures without people knowing.  Case and Point)
Just me trying to go to the bathroom.  (Don´t worry, nothing is going on here.)
A picture of me in Salcajá, an area close by mine!

Changes are Coming!

  X´be´ij Wachala´al!  I recieved some emails this week with some Q´eqchi in them, so I had to start off with some K´iche´ for all you guys!  Although I bet none of you will have any idea of what I said, just look how I usually start off my emails, and you´ll figure it out!

     This week has been a really good week for us.  We started off the week with two big goals in mind:  Find at least 15 news this week, and extend a baptismal invite to all of our progressing investigators that we have.  And that worked miracles.  We accomplished every single one of our goals.  Found exactly 15 news, and invited everyone to be baptized.  Now, not everyone accepted to be baptized, but it helped us see who was going to progress and who wasn´t.  And some people did accept a fecha!  When you put hard reaching goals, and you do everything you can to reach them, miracles happen.

     Our most positive investigator now is Jorge.  He´s accepted to be baptized on the 29th of March.  He´s basically ready for everything.  He accepts a lot of the doctrine we give him, and when he doesn´t understand, he asks questions to understand.  And they are really good questions.  He couldn´t come to church this Sunday, but when he told us that he couldn´t, he was apologizing like mad!  He promised us to come every Sunday from now on.  He´s looking really good, we just need to keep going with him.

     Also, we went with some old investigators that we had.  They are an older couple that live pretty far away.  Crazy how it happened too.  This week we got a random phone call, and turned out to be the man, Lorenzo.  He just asked how I was doing, and when he figured our that I was still here in Chiquilajá, he invited us to go with him.  And when we went, they were so receptive!  They remembered a lot of our message, and they are eager to learn more.  I am conviced that if they come to church, they´ll for sure get baptized.  (They also accepted a fecha for the 5th of April, but they need to come to church for that to happen.)

     By the way, Antonio is just rediculous.  He´s not taking us seriously, and it´s been really frustruating to me.  And it´s also effecting Cindy.  She didn´t come to church because he didn´t want her to.  We really need to talk serious with them, but they are going on vacation for about two weeks.  Great...  So things are slowing down with him, but we are going to keep at it.

     They are the people that accepted to be baptized.  We really tried to have everyone accept a fecha, but we didn´t have too much luck.  But we´ve got some progressing investigators that are looking good, and I´m sure we´ll be able toput more fechas this week.

     Also, I´ve been enjoying a lot contacting recently.  Like, a lot.  There are some really amazing things that happen when I find myself contacting.  And, for me, I guess I´ve kind of made it a game when the people aren´t interested.  I try to make them change their mind as much as I can.  For example, there have been people that say they don´t want us to visit them, and 5 minutes later, we have an appointment with them.  Could you call that manipulation?  I guess.  But it´s for a good cause!  Jaja

     I´ve been really working on making my studies more efficient.  I gues Elder Welker, my comp from the CCM, was thinking the same thing recently!  Jaja but for a while, I´ve been studying to strengthen my testimony, be more sure about things, etc.  But recently, I´ve been trying to focus on what my investigator needs.  Really praying about their needs, and how I can help them.  It´s been incredible.  My studies just seem...  better.  I´ve been getting a lot more out of my studies, and that always helps.

     Talking with my comp this week, I´ve realized that there is a point in every convert´s lives that they change from a convert to a member.  And it´s a very needed change.  For example, a man named Pedro that has been baptized a little over a month is already a member, because he´s magnifying his callings, and really just plain pilas.  On the other hand, there is a convert her named Martha who has been baptized since August, but she is still a convert.  Why do I say that?  Because she doesn´t go to church every week, she´s not sure about what she´s doing, etc.  And we need to help the people make that transition.  it is so important, becuase it´s the difference between active and inactive when their testimony is tried.

     Hoo, I hope you all understood that last paragraph...

     Well, that´s about it for now.  I´m thinking I´m in my last week in this area, becuase changes are next week.  But you never know.  But in case I do, I´m going to go out with a bang.  Until next time!

     - Elder Stuart

     P.S. Read 1 Samuel 10:8, and then 1 Samuel 13:5-14, and think about the importance of Profets/Priesthood.  And if you want, D&C 98:14-15

Sunday, March 9, 2014


 Hello Family!  How are you all doing?  I hope that you all have had an amazing week.  Being out here on the mission really makes me learn how to appreciate every little moment that I have, so I´m hoping that you all are making the best of everything.  Life (the mission) goes by way to fast, and if we don´t take advantage of everything that comes at us, we will miss some amazing moments.  Romans 8:18

     On that note, I´ve been trying to find out the best way for me to finish up the mission strong.  And what I´ve realized is that there really is nothing special to do.  I just have to keep doing the things that I´ve always been doing, and the things that are expected of me.  I´ve seen way to many missionaries that waste their last couple of months, and I´m set on making sure that that doesn´t happen.  Alma 37:6-7

     We have been working a lot with Antonio this week.  Right now he is at the point where he just needs an answer about the BoM, and he´ll be baptized.  He´s coming to church off and on these weeks, and we like that a lot.  We just need to make sure that he´s feeling the spirit everytime he is with us.  If that goes as planned, he should be baptized the 15th of March.  We are just really focusing on making sure he always feels the Spirit.  John 15:26

     We found some guy this week named Jorge.  He´s the perfect example of someone who is just waiting for this Gospel.  We found him by stopping by a store because I wanted to talk to the lady there.  But she just blew us off as usual, but then Jorge came out to attend us.  Basically, he´s been looking for a church for a while, and when we taught him the Restoration, he ate it all up.  The thing is that he left town for a week, but this week, we´ll get back to teaching him.  Alma 16:16, D&C 123:12

     Also, this week we really focused on finding new people to teach.  We are really making sure that if people we are currently teaching don´t want to progress, we have something to fall on always.  And there are a lot of great moments that come from trying to find people to teach.  Everyone here is a child of our Heavenly Father, and they deserve to know the truth.  John 10:14

     As you can see, I´ve been trying to put references to every paragraph that I write.  I´m really happy of how much my scripture knowledge has grown in the mission, and I want it to keep growing.  It´s been a really humbling experience for me to realize how little I knew of the scriptures before the mission, so now I´ve made a goal to know them even more.  D&C 93:36

     That´s about it for this week you guys.  I hope that you all have another great week, and for those of you that are out in the field with me, love every minute that you have to be a misisonary.  There really is no other time like this.  Until next time!   

     - Elder Stuart

     P.S. If you aren´t full of scriptures by now, read Helaman 10:4-5


We were contacting a house, and I just looked to my right, and this was my view.  Man, Guatemala is asolutely beautiful.

The average door size in Guatemala.

We were playing Jenga for a Noche de Hogar, and this is what we had at one point.

¡Xbe´ij watchalal!

¡Hola Familia!  Man oh man what a good time it is to be a missionary now.  I´ve been doing a lot of reflexion this week, and it´s incredible for me to realize that I´m a missionary.  I´ve been remembering all the times when I was little where I thought "Man, those missionaries are so old and so great."  And now I´m one of those missionaries!  We are in the time that we need to hasten this work, and I am a part of it!  The Lord is asking us to do all that we can to spread this gospel to all nations, and I´m in the heart of the work.  What a blessing.

     Well, after that paragraph, it´s kind of rough talking about this week.  It wasn´t the best week in the world; more than anything everything just went by really slow.  We had been spending so much time on Cruz that we kind of neglected the other parts of the work, so we are suffering from that now.  Not gonna lie, it´s been kind of frustruating for me spending most of the week trying to pick this area up again, and not watching it happen.  But I feel like that is one of the biggest reasons that I came to this mission.  To work on my patience.  And I feel like I am doing a lot better.  Tht doesn´t mean that I´m perfect yet, but I´ll get there!

     We do have one really good prospect.  Antonio, Cindy´s husband, is now listening to us.  Cindy has been baptized for about a month now, but she´s on fire!  She wants to do everything possible for us to baptize Antonio.  And she´s super pilas too!  Jaja for example, this Friday we went to teach Antonio about the BoM, and basically she taught the whole lesson.  She´s got a super strong testimony, and she´s gonna be the key factor for us to baptize her husband.  If we keep going at it, I feel like I could baptize him before I leave this area.

     This week was Stake Conference, and of the four hours that I went to, about 3 of them were all focused on missionary work.  I don´t remember that happening when I was back home, but now missionary work seems to be sneaking up in every church meeting that I go to.  The Lord really is wanting us to pick up the pace.

     This week, I´ve been focusing a lot on my BoM study, and I´ve slowly been realizing more and more how important this book really is.  I know for a fact that it is true, and it is the word of God.  This week during a lesson, we had one investigator tell us that he wanted a dream telling him the BoM is true.  And before I knew it, I was testifying to him that in my 20 years of being a member, I´ve never had any manifestation, dream, voice, or anything of the sort telling me that it was true.  It´s just been year after year of studying it,  and I know that it is true.  There is no doubt of any sort in my mind.  

     Well, that´s about it for this week.  We are going to be working hard this week to get a lot more investigators to teach, so that we can pick up the work here.  I just want you all to know how much I love being out here.  The trials, the work, the culture, the language, the Spirit, and so much more.  There is nothing like it.  Until next time!

    - Elder Stuart

     P.S. 1 Nefi 6:5,  and try replacing the word "write" for "do".