Thursday, December 13, 2012

Busque el bueno en tiempos dificiles

Hey family!

It was so great to hear from you guys this week! Sounds like you had a good one. Tell coop congrats on his ordination to the priesthood and that I am so proud of him! Tell Mary that I am still waiting a letter from her; it’s been a while since I got one from her. And tell Brooke congrats on her singing. It’s crazy how fast Christmas is coming! I hope you are all enjoying it and living with the true Christmas spirit.

So I have learned a little bit more about Christmas here. Here in the city of Irapuato they have a special Christmas celebration that is evidently exclusively here. It’s called Barrios; it literally means neighborhood or ward. But they basically have a huge party in every neighborhood of the city. They start the first of December and take turns in every neighborhood every day of December. I have yet to see it but I hear it’s pretty cool! They also do piñatas for Christmas, kind of weird but I think it’s kind of like their Christmas stockings. Oh and the tamales are awesome!

Thanks for the updates on the missionaries, that’s so cool to hear about all the people getting ready to go. I actually had written down to ask about Jon G. I guess he leaves this week? And Nefi? I didn't even know he had a call where is he going?

What else, oh I know exactly who Elder Atkins is, we arrived together from the MTC, I don’t know him that well cause he wasn't in my district in the MTC but he seems like a cool kid. It’s crazy how small the world is sometimes I know a kid here that is going to Logan after Christmas and his girlfriend goes to Utah State. And tons of people that know Utah.

The language is better... it’s coming but slowly. I feel a lot better about it now and can at least see my progress. At the same time it is slow and really frustrating at times. But it doesn't seem like as much of a barrier anymore. I know the Lord is constantly helping me with it.

I don’t have a lot much more to say but I want to share an experience that I had this week. We have been teaching a family here, the mom and the oldest kid have been super stoked and ready to join the church, but the dad wasn't so ready. We had baptismal dates with them and everything, but the dad got in an accident about 2 and a half weeks ago and has been in the hospital. I felt really bad, and was also a little bummed because they haven’t been able to be baptized. But we have been helping where we could, we found blood donors for him (he broke his femur and needed surgery, and blood donors, I couldn't because I am taking vitamins, they have a lot of weird rules here, I really think it’s because I am white and the nurse was nervous that I had some disease or something). And we have been visiting, teaching lessons, and we gave him a blessing. Last week he started talking about taking his family to church when he got out, which shocked us because he was totally against it before. We went to visit yesterday and he started asking all these questions about the Book of Mormon we left him, but super specific. We answered them and found out he has read all the way to the middle of Mosiah! And he is praying to learn the truth! The change we have seen in him is amazing. I hope it continues when he leaves the hospital. But it all came out of a trial in his life and testifies to me that God always has a plan. We need to trust Him and look for the good in the hard times!

I know the Book of Mormon is true and the keystone to our religion. It changes lives and if we just read it, it can change our lives for the better too. The church is true!

I love you all!
Elder Utley

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