Mexico, Mexico City South - Spanish Speaking

Monday, June 24, 2013

Learning to love like Christ, seeing his own weaknesses, new shoes, and rabies

And I am still alive.

So I am sure you are wondering about the Companionship. Well it was a lot better this week. The problem is that I felt like he was only looking for my problems and flaws and how he can fix them. So he was constantly giving me "counsel" on how I can be better.  I was starting to feel really bad about myself. I felt that he legit thought really bad things about me. SO on Saturday we planned for this upcoming week and at the end of this planning session we had a companionship inventory. He sits down and gives a deeeeeep sigh - so automatically I think to myself.... "here we go again". And we did. He told me there are two things about me that concern him. And I was like what's new Doctor Seuss. First, he told me that he sees me too concerned with the material goods of the world instead of loving the people here. I immediately stopped him right there because I was like HOW outrageous can you be. So the background behind this judgement. HE spent all of his money in the beginnning of the month. In Chinampas we NEED money for transportation. He doesn't have any. So I am paying every time we travel and just about have nothing left because it costs ALOT of money to travel. SO one day I decided we were going to reschedule a cita because if we were to go I would have to pay for us both 3 extra times to visit a guy that is hardly interested in the church. And we were super close to an investigator who was down the street (she has a baptismal date), so I was like we need to go with her because in one hour we have to be here anyways for another cita. SO it only made sense... and since I am the one paying I thought he would respect my decision. He judged that decision as me being too fond of the material things of the world instead of loving the people. So I didn't want to have to do this but I got on his case and told him it is not my fault he was irresponsible and spent all of his money in the beginning of the month. He then was like oh. And I then expressed to him that I have felt like crap the past two weeks because he is constantly telling me what I am doing wrong and not what I do well. It is constantly a critique. I told him I know I am sooo far from perfect, especially as a missionary, but that I am trying my best. I told him I LOVE the people here, and if I loved the things of the world more than this gospel I would NOT be here. I then told him that I am not going to learn from his "counsel" but I will learn from his example. So I asked him to stop trying to change me into him and accept me in my imperfections and then we can be friends, love each other, and have SUCCESS. So then we got into talking about families because the second counsel was I need to live the gospel and forget my family. I told him he was crazy and that I am doing this for Christ, my family, and so other families can be together for eternity! Then he got emotional because his family are not all members and it was a perfect segway to help him and show him my love. I told him I respect him so much for the difficulties he is experiencing in his family and that I can't even imagine my family not being active. Then he teared up and after exchanging compliments we were all good. He felt bad that his counsel turned out to be so critical. He wants to be a psychologist so I think he feels entitled to help all of his companions change something or fix them. But he knows that I don't want to hear this anymore and I just want to be his friend. We were wayyy better after that. It is still a little awkward sometimes but it is a work and progress. He is a good missionary and I am lucky to have him in that respect. So I think I can make it one more month with this guy. I also talked to President V. this week when I had an interview with him and he knows that Elder G has struggles, as we all do, and told me he expected this. But he told me he knows I can handle it and the only thing I can do is love him and be an example. So I was super grateful for that talk with President. Love my President so much!! Like we are already best friends and I have seen him 5 times. haha. 

On the other note it was my comps bday this Friday and Elder R. and I talked to an Hermana about buying him new shoes because his shoes have holes in them and it is CONSTANTLY raining which does not help. So she did. So he has new shoes and I think he is happy. Glad I have this opportunity to love someone who can help me learn about my own weaknesses. 

I LOVED the conference last night. I saw Chris Ludlow and Austin Braun and Megan Berge on the tv! It was soo funny. I was freaking out. We were also all freaking out when he said that we could use FACEBOOK. But everyone was super loud and in the way trying to fix the TV to Spanish because it was in English and we were in the technology closet watching it in English and it was just loud and I coughed and we couldn't hear everything. So yeah that's what happened. The most important rule we follow as missionaries is to love everyone around us and serve them. Everything else will follow if we are doing that. So that is what I am trying to doooo. Sometimes it is hard. But yeah. 

We have three, maybe four baptisms in July and I am super excited. We have a wedding the 17 of July so be waiting for those pictures. It is with my favorite couple. M. and C. I am sooo happy they are actually going to get married so I can baptize them. Then we have M. who is a gem. She loves reading and praying and practially knows this church is true but is a little afraid to change her religion. But we are working with her and plus her kids want to be Mormon because they love the church so much. SO she is praying to recieve a 100% answer that this is true. I HOPE she gets it soon because her baptismal date is the 13 of July. hahaha. We are pushing for her because she is already ready and she will benefit the church so much. I love being able to help people become more close to Jesus Christ and accept his Atonement in their life to help them in every aspect. I love it so much. I feel so blessed. I don't know if I only have a month left in Chinampas or more but it is likely that I change in a month so I hope I can keep expanding relatioships with these people so when I come back and visit them after my mish when you guys come down they don't forget meee. hahaha.

I was super sick with a cold all week and it was horrible. But Mexican medicine works better and I am all better. I only have a cough. 

Also a rabid dog BIT ME REALLY HARD AND I HAVE A PICTURE AND IT WAS BLEEDING AND I AM AFRAID THAT IT HAS RABIES AND THIS IS NOT A JOKE. So yeah if the dog dies ten days after it bit me that means it has rabies and that means I have to go to the hospital.... SO that kind of sounds backwards but apparently that is what happens. So I am hoping it doesn't die. Because if it dies, I die. But the wound is healing and it doesn't hurt so I think I am good. I clean it twice a day... hahaha. Oh Mexico. 

I love you all so much and hope all is well. It rains all the time here. I drown everyday. BYE.

Con Amor,

Elder Macdonald

Dog bite. Evil, nasty, rabie infested dog. I miss Scout. 

Just by a lake... nbd 
Super artistic

Monday, June 17, 2013

Good byes, change, growth, and earthquakes...

So last Monday after I emailed you guys was super depressing because it was the last District Meeting with Elder B. and L... But I decided I was going to take what I learned from them and make myself more of the missionary God knows I can be. So yeaaaahh. This week was a little challenging. Tuesday morning we got to the changes and I had a hard time being happy. SO I said hi to my new comp and then said bye to my friends Elder B. and Elder D. because they are leaving the mission and I won't ever see them again ever in my life... hahaha or for a year and a half. Whateeer. (they are being changed out of the south mission to one of the new Mexico City missions) The first day was horrible because I was just in silent mourning. My new comp's name is Elder G. He really isn't a bad guy but we are just not similar in many ways so it makes for a hard companionship and gives me lots of opportunities to learn and grow. I think he thought I would be "a helpless American missionary". This week I proved him wrong and he knows I am a hard worker and trying to be a good missionary.
When we had weekly planning in our Companionship Inventory I let him know I was sorry for some things I had done, but that if we are going to have a healthy companionship we needed to work together.  He apologized for a few things and after that the week was pretty good.  Okay. Know that I know I am his companion for a reason and I am going to find that reason ASAP so I can get ouuutttaaa hurrrr. hahaha. But really. I know we are together to learn from one another. He is a good hard worker and that's what I was asking for in my prayers so time to start looking on the bright side of life.
SO enough about that foolish nonsense. We have so many amazing investigators that will be ready to be baptized in July! I ammmm soooooo stokkkkkedd. I feel so lucky to be here at this time because it is such an oppourtinty to see so much spiritual growth in people. This week flew by and if I only have 5 more weeks here I need to get to work so I can enjoy the opportunity to baptize some of these fooos. We have two marriages to look forward too, and like 5-7 people that we could baptize. We already have 4 dates of baptism. Wooohooo. And some of these people are gems that will be such a help to this Rama. 
Okay another fun story. SO when I told you it rains here I wasn't lying. This week it literally flooded and I was walking in water up to my calves. I have the picture to prove it. Another weird thing that happened was an EARTHQUAKE when I was sleeping and I remember waking up because my bed was literally moving up and down, like ALOT, but apparently sleep is more important than my life so I disregarded it and fell back asleep. I woke up and thought it was a dream until Elder R. called and asked if we were okay! hahaha. So that was funny. 

So Elder B.'s parents came this week and it was so much fun to see them interact with the people here in English. I just about died because I thought about you guys and when you will come down here to pick me up and I can just imagine you trying to say something in Spanish and offend these people or something. But it was such a fun going away party and such a success. It really made me realize how many lives Elder B. affected and how excited it made me to work hard to bring the gospel into the lives of so many here. yayayaaa. PS his mom sent you guys a picture of me in an email I think. Did you ever get it??? Who knows..

So ya I don't have much to say. Just send me words of wisdom to keep going with this companionship and work hard. I love you guys so so so much and missed you all alot this week. Super happy you guys have had good experiences. Love hearing about your lives every week!

Con Amor, 
Elder Macdonald
A cool cave thing.

The water flood/Titanic

His new District

It's a bird, its a plane, its Elder B.!

Sad to see him go: (
Oh yeah this dog was wearing a weird shirt. hhahaha. So confusing

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Atonement, graffiti, sick!, push-ups, and changes...

Hey family! So I am super happy you are all having a great time away from home traveling the world... haha. DC, I am sure is as beautiful as ever. Super fun. And Andrew... SUPER jealous. Jk. After the mission. Plus I am in Mexico.... haha super exotic and foreign here. Lots of graffiti. lolz. (ps you should keep the graffiti on our wall so that when I get home from the mission I can feel like I never left MEXICO)....(someone put graffiti on our side fence last week!)

Okay so remember last week when I was writing you and told you I felt super sick. Yeah, well I wasn't fibbing. SO we had our district meeting in the Casa de Oracion as usual and I was like using the bathroom like I have never used it before. Sorry for the detail. But it was bad. AND then we went home on a MICRO and the motion turned into motionsickness and I was dying. Literally. I was mourning my life at this moment and would have rather been on the sinking Titanic. It was really gross. And my stomach was burning and just not right. I was feeling food from the past crawling up my esophagus and yeah, it was evil. So we got off the micro and immediately I was in search for a garbage because I did NOT want to just throw up on the street with hundreds of people to accidentally slip in it after I was done... SUper courteous of me. So rapidly I saw some garbage and was like GOLD and sprinted to it. It was one of the worst throw ups I have ever had. Super chunky with rice and suuuper hot with all of the salsa. It brought back memories from when I threw up those Flamin Hots... Remember that? Good times. So yeah. After a minute or two I was done... and started walking. Then I realized it was the garbage for one of the taquerias and the guy was P.O.ed and I was alll, haaa sooorrrrrryyy....THANKS. and then ran away. I always seem to find myself running away from awkward situations. So yeah. Then that night I was on the toilet and hated life. Sooo yeah. It was super fun. Hope you enjoy the detail. 

The next day I felt a little better. Luckily we had intercambias so I went with Elder B. and we ate at an Hermanas house that makes super good food and I was lucky enough to have PASTA. It was soo calm in my tummy and I was a happy camper. That was definitely a blessing. But yeah. I feel better now. All is well in Zion. Que bueno. So the intercambias were fun. We had a really good lesson at a FHE with the familia G. Their such a great family and I think are in the process of baptism. So Elder B. and I went in to teach a little about La Expiacion. The Atonement. We started with an interactive example... unfortunately I was the guinepig. So Elder B., one by one, offered candy from the USA (HOW GLORIOUS....) and after each person - whether they accepted the candy or not - I had to do 10 push ups. We then related it to the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The Atonement is there for all of us. We have the choice to take what it offers or not. Jesus Christ already suffered and paid the debt, so it would be STUPID not to accept the gift (or candy). I did like 70 push ups and was secretly dying. (keep in mind I was still kind of sick - so i thanked Elder B. later). It was really interesting being the guinepig. I got to feel the pain that I had from doing the 70 push ups one after another... and it really wasn't that fun. Then I was thinking about how I could NEVER do 10 push ups for every person on this earth that has lived, is living, or will live, let alone feel all of their pains, sickness, tempations, and sins.... So it was super real this time to kind of understand that I CAN'T comprehend the pain he suffered. It is gut wrenching. Jesus Christ was literally all alone at one point. At one point he lost the influence of the Holy Ghost. His Father couldn't help him. He had to suffer this for himself to be capable to help us through our sufferings... It was the ultimate sacrifice. And the Atonement didn't end when he died on the cross. The atonement is living within Jesus Christ. The atonement is absolutely valid for us to use, and we NEED to use it... So, in this life we are meant to have hard times so that we can run to Jesus Christ and feel the comfort he offers us. He has literally felt it all. It was a really cool lesson I got to help teach and listen too. 

We also have a new investigator named M. and she is really struggling in life. She literally lives in a tin shed that barely fits a bed with her two little kids. She needs God soo much and I am so grateful to have the opportunity to help her in this journey. I will keep you updated with her. 

We have changes tomorrow... and I have a new companion. I am staying in Chinampas which I am super happy for. But my new companion I am a little nervous about. Change is hard, but it is part of life.  I am going to definitely try to do everything I can to become friends with him right away. We will see how this goes. Elder R. is our new District Leader, and he is training a new missionary. I am so lucky to have him still! Woohoo. Elder B. leaves next week. His fam comes Wednesday and I will meet them Saturday. It will be fun to talk to Americans! haha. 
PS my Spanish is rapidly getting better and better. I really don't have much to worry about and can communicate almost whenever I need to to anyone. Such a blessing. So another month or two to learn all the random vocab words I am missings and then I think it'll be safe to say I am fluent! Elder B. gave me one of his suits and I am stoked about that because it is a lie when they say you are a one suit elder. You can't be a missionary and expect to only have one suit in the mission. My suit would've died before the two years were over if I didn't get another to wear half of the time. Just some words of wisdom. 

All is well orrrhurrr in Mexico. holla' atchurboi. Hope you are all well and safe and enjoying summer. I cannot believe it is already June... Say wuuut. A year ago and I was starting summer term at BYU. Que loco. OKay, love you all. ADIOS FOOOS.

Con Amor,

Elder Macdonald


Elder B. is going home this week : (

Me struggling big time. Notice mamacita laughing at me struggling.

A doll of Elder B... creepy, yet endearing. If I don't get one after I finish, does that mean my mission wasn't a success? Probably.

Grafiti. Does our wall look like this? lol

Last pic with Elder L. And I know you want to make fun of my pants being at my belly button, but don't. thnx

Monday, June 3, 2013

First baptism, packages from home, gratitude, and skin of pig!

Hey family!

First of all, I got the package. It came last week on Wednesday - SUPER QUICK, but since there was food in the package I had to pick it up myself and sign stuff so we had to wait until today to pick it up. So that is what we did today. We went to the super rich part of the city and got lost. NBD. But yeah I got the package and am so happy with all the wonderful dulces (candy) and corbatas (new ties) and everything. So THANKS best fam bam in da worrrld. Seriously!!

Also thank you so much for the emails. I was able to have a really great week and feel a lot better about everything. But your emails helped, nonetheless. I love emails from you guys eeery week. 

So I am starting to get sad again because of change (like usual) because Elder B. goes home in a week or two (NOOOOOOO) and Elder L. will most likely change since my instruction is over. CRAY CRAY. I really am dumb and am always too late to appreciate what I have when I have it... But I really had the best district leader a missionary could ask for, and likewise with my trainer. A lot of it was the getting used to Mexico so I was never focused on the good... hahaha. But yeah I am so grateful for the blessings I have had these first twelve weeks in Mexico. I talked to Elder W. this week because we went to immigration and he is still struggling (like as bad as I struggled the first two weeks) because he has had a difficult trainer, and his district wasn't a cup of sunshine either. Just trust me... No time to get into detail... haha. And as sad as it is, that was when I realized how much I love Elder L. and Elder B. and the ejemplos they have been for me. Gee, I hope I can apply the things I have learned from them in the remainder of my mission. Anyways, I am not like depressed but more bitter sweet to say goodbye to them. 

So this week was great. Wednesday, like I said, I went to immigration and got to talk all day to Elder W. He is a great kid. We had some great laughs about our experiences and just pumped each other up to keep going and make this mission the BEST. (PS this email will be short cause we don't have much time). Then this week was my first baptism. WOOOHOOOO. Even though I didn't teach him from the beginning I still had the chance to review lessons with him and he eventually chose me to baptize him. Jonathon Daniel Martinez Serradle is his name, and it was such a cool experience. It was also pretty loco - I mean, what's to be expected in Chinampas. First of all, the water was legit freezing because we were out of gas. Suprised? I wasn't. Then when I baptized him he got all stiff and I was like ahhh heck nooo and we both went down and I basically was swimming and his foot went up out of the water and so we had to do it again.... hahaha. Elder B. and Elder R. had two baptisms that day (sisters) and they are hilarious and NEVER stop laughing... So one of the girls was laughing the whole time I was baptizing Jonathon, one, because it was probably awkward to watch and two, because she was freezing and I guess that is funny... So after those three all got baptized and Hermano Eros shut the doors to the font they DOVE IN THE WATER. Hahahahahahaha. It was legit crazy and I was a bit concerned because maybe that is like againsts the rules or super sacreligious or something, but hey, it makes for a good memory. So that was an interesting first baptism. Probs won't be forgetting it. Thanks. Oh, and I also sang Divina Luz (Lead Kindly Light) with a family from my ward that know how to sing and it was super fun. So we just sang the harmonies and it was greaattt. 

This week I was forced to finally eat Chicharon. EW. It is the skin of PIG. Why is it that  anyone would have a desire to eat that. Idk. But EVERYONE EATS IT HERE ALL THE TIME OMGOMGOMGOMG. And most of the time is is hard like a chip and that I can deal with if I think it is a dorito, peroooo it was all slimy and goopy and I was crying while eating it and yeah. But hey, at least I tried it so now I can honestly say I don't like it. 

We have so much potential here is Chinampas so just keep praying that we can find and teach with the spirit to bring more strong members into the ward.

I had some great reads this week in Mosiah, my favorite, and am just loving the Book of Mormon more and more. Also the New Testament is wonderful. I am in John. My goal is to become a better teacher with the scriptures and really know how to teach with UMMPH. So that is a work in progress. Anyways. I gotss 2 go and read my other emails. I'm super popular. jkjk. lovelove

Boo - have fun in ITALY and learn italian so you can help me learn after the mission. 

Rach - have fun with maci

Zach - have fun with grammy and papa (ps thanks for the letters grams and pops: love emm)

Parents - Hate you for going to DC without me. Thanks for the invite. tell Kates I love her.


Con Amor,

Elder Macdonald
supers awk with my hands. laugh

Elder B. gets a treat

The locals having fun 


The volcano that is going to kill me soon. RIP. Popcoltuahsocanon is the name. algo asi


Thuggin it after a bautismo

Immigration with Elder W.