Monday, July 18, 2011

What can I say....another letter and pics from our favorite missionary in Mexico!

So I completed SEVEN MONTHS in the mission last week! It is gone byWAY too fast! We continue to work and work. The branch here in Huatabampo has picked up quite a bit! There is a bit more participation and a LOT more of the spirit. We confirmed Daniela this passed sunday and she is doing GREAT! she loves church a lot and she just looks so much happier. Having the spirit with you changes everything. She is no exception. Our little convert likes running all over the places excitedly telling all her friends she just got baptized :)

So the change comes on august first. I will have completed SIX whole months in Huatabampo. There are some people here that I love a lot and I keep saying I will be here for a year because I dont want to leavethem! But we are going to see what happens.

And mom, to answer your question about the baptisms here, in the little tiny branches way out here, news travels slow. So the big baptism festivities like the refreshments after dont happen. You might think that is something expected that just happens, but not out here! I would like to get something like that going. Brownies and cookies and lemonade and all of that would beawesome. We are supposed to be having another baptism this saturday, so I will see what I can do! Here in the branch, if we dont do it, it probably wont get done. So planning out baptisms like that will take a bit more work. But we will get something awesome done ;)

Anyways, if Rick Perry finds this, thank you so much for updating me on the branch at home! I will always like the quirky things President Cassinat says :)

I will be waiting to hear from you all! Write to me! Love you all.

Elder Marsh

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Elder Marsh....still doing great and seeing blessings!

So the baptism of Daniela came early! We were planning on holding her baptism this weekend on the 16th, but she wanted to do it earlier! So we planned it all out, got the branch together, and held the MOST spirtitual baptism that I have ever been to. The members even said it was one of the best they have had in a very long time. With half the branch, the Spirit very strongly present, and the MOST excited person that I have baptized, it was a service that I wont be able to forget. I had the opportunity to talk a bit about the Atonement during the service. After I taught Gospel Principles, after I talked in Sacrament meeting. It was a crazy, hectic, but spiritually refreshing sunday. And whats more, I was privileged to use the Priesthood power and perform the ordinance. When Daniela came out of the water, she was laughing and told me "gracias". I was a bit unsure why she had thanked me, because no one had done that before. But then the spirit came to me and told me something I had been praying about. But of that sweet manifestation of the love of God I cant share :) Somethings are too meaningful to hand out. Daniela is a very special daughter of God, and I feel so blessed to hve been placed in her path. Even more blessed to have helped out my Savior in the salvation of this soul.

Elder Rosales and I cant believe the change is halfway over! We are now entering week 4, and that thought really just scared me. I feel I might be going at the end of the change on the first of august. But the thing is, I wont be all that bummed if I dont get changed! My companion and I are seeing so many results of our labor and our baptism goal this month is becoming more and more reachable every day! We really saw the hand of the Lord this week as something happened that had never happened before. we had FIVE brand new people come to Sacrament, 4 of which we have never taught, 2 of which we have never even MET! There is a direct correlation between investigators who come to church and the ones who get baptized. Almost everyone who comes enters the water. So Elder Rosales and i are very prayerful and we are going to start teaching a whole bunch of new people this week. And we are going to prepare them to be baptized this month :)

I really do know the Lord loves us, and worries for us. He just wants us to be happy and enjoy this amazing life he has given us. My companion and I watched the Testaments this morning and a line really made me think. Jacob is arguing with his father about some choices Jacom has made and askes his father why he just cant be happy. Elam, the father then says "Am I happy! I am happy because you are happy. Wherever you are I cant always be your father, but you will always be my son." This made me think quite a bit, and I thought about what Elam wanted to say. I then realized that Elam said he cant always be the father, because his son forgets him, or doesnt heed the parental warning from a caring father. And that a caring parent cant ever forget about his son.

We are the same with our Father in Heaven. Whether or not we want him to be our Father, we will ALWAYS be his children. And he will always love us. I know this is true, and I know he knows us.

I hope all of you have an amazing week :)

Elder Marsh.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

We love Picture's!!!

Elder Marsh is experiencing some rainstorms.

Yup, it is raining here! But only at night, because the strong sun comes up and wipes out all of the clouds. Anyways, things are going great! Elder Rosales got here and we went right to work. One day, we went out for a First Visit. We got there, and no one was home. So we starting moving again, lead by the Spirit. Passing by the side streets, doing a few contacts, I didnt feel that we were in the right area. So we turned down another street, and passed a house with a door open. Inside I saw someone. I didnt know if it was man or woman, one or two people. But thats when I felt it. "There" I said, almost outloud. We turned around, knocked on the door, and found Daniela. She is 17 and listened attentively as we taught about Jesus Christ and the Book of Mormon. She accepted baptism in that visit. We came back the next day and her grandma filled here head with all the crazy stuff the "Mormons" believe. SUPPOSEDLY, we only drink orange soda and we cant eat pig meat. Also, we have to pay HALF of our money to the Church. I had never heard these things in my almost 20 years of being a member. :)

So about the hald the money thing, Daniela told us that even if thats what it takes to be a member, she was willing to do it. The Gospel changes people, it is true. But some people already changed, and just need the Gospel. We taught her the law of tithing and she gladly accepted, having found a new job. Something she started to pray for when we taught her how :) She even went to church yesterday! Going to church is the HARDEST commitment for people. In fact, in my almost 5 months in Huatabampo, I have only brought 6 people to church, 5 baptized, one waiting til the 16th of July. And so, of all the people who have come to church here, they all enter the waters of baptism. So we are pretty sure about Daniela :) We are just going to move along with her to her baptismal date! We might even baptize her this week if things work out ;)

I continue to see miracle here in the hot Sonoran Desert. Francisco, who was a hard man with a lot of rage, a man who would have shown up to church without a shirt if we let him, now has the priesthood, shows up with a white shirt and tie (big step for him), and openly shares in class his grand testimony of the power of prayer. I love this work. I love seeing the Lords hand and the power of his love on peoples hearts. It doesnt matter the 110 degree weather or how sweaty I get. There are people ready to live the Gospel here. Out of the hundreds of people, houses, families, "no"s and "yes"s that arent heartfelt, they are here. And every mile is worth my while. Yes, Hercules is an awesome movie :)

I know the church is true. I know prayer is a way to speak with out Father in Heaven. More importantly, I know he listens.

Everyone, take care.

with love,

Elder Marsh

PS. Mom, take pictures of the festivities of the 4th of July! We dont have that here. Indepence day is in September, along with Day of the Dead. Just a taste of the Holidays here :)