My brother reminded me that I haven´t been including any culture fun facts lately, so here is one for this week: in general, Mexicans are very, very tone deaf. But they still sing loud and proud, which I love, even if I can´t distinguish one key to sing along with sometimes.
Also, related to that, not all of the hymns in the English hymnbook are in the Spanish one, but there are some hymns in the Spanish hymnbook that we don´t have in English too.
This week was a really special week. We beat our record this week for number of lessons taught (27 in total this week!), and we beat our daily record twice (6 lessons in one day). Hermana Gonzalez and I have really been working hard to try to meet the Standards of Excelence in the mission, and the Lord has really been blessing us.
Last Monday we had our first Ward Family Home Evening, or Noche de Hogar. We made invitations and really advertized it and worked hard to make it a success. But it turned out to be so much more of a success than I ever imagined! We had investigators, muchos menos activos, conversos recientes... Martin y Pilar brought their son, the whole familia de la Cruz came, Ana Lilia came. And so many members came as well! The Bishop said that we had about 80% attendence of a regular Sacrament Meeting! And everyone had a good time. This was the first time the ward has tried to do something of this nature, and Hermana Gonzalez and I could not be more happier with the success that we had.
We are finally starting to see some success in this area, not really in baptisms, but in attitude of the members. They can feel the difference. We have more people willing to work with us and accompany us. This week was a little hard to get members to accompany us simply because we only had phone signal half the time, but we still managed to find members for all but three of our lessons, which is another miracle. Yesterday in the Ward Counsel some of the leaders thanked us for the work we are doing because they can truly see the difference. The funny thing is though, we aren´t the ones doing anything. I mean, we´re working as hard as we possibly can, doing all that we can, praying, fasting, teaching, improving, but it´s obvious to me that the one doing the real work isn´t us, but the Lord. Just an example, Israel. Israel is (or was) a menos activo who came to church yesterday for the 4th week in a row. But literally all we did was show up at his house one day to meet his mamá. We had no idea Israel even existed. And as we were talking with his mom, he came up and asked us what time church was on Sunday, because I wanted to come back. And now he´s attended four weeks in a row, just like that. And we misionaries didn´t actually do anything, it was 100% the Lord´s work.
Speaking of Israel, the first time we visited his mamá, Lupita, she was willing to talk with us, but she had very very little desire to return to church. Well, that has changed. Thanks to the example of her son, everything about her and her family has changed. Now every time we visit them, she has questions for us from what she read, and now she has desires to return to church. It´s amazing the influence one person, like Israel, can have just through his example.
As you hopefully all know, a very special day is coming up, when we will remember the life, death, and resurrection of the Savior Jesus Christ. I encourage all of you to go see the Easter video that the church has put out, you can find it in English here www.mormon.org/easter/
hallelujah. It´s only about 2 minutes long but it is powerful. I know that through Him, and we can find new life. I know that He lives. I know it. I know that He is my Savior, and I love Him.
ps. Also a quick reminder, General Conference is in less than two weeks!!! I have seriously never been more excited for General Conference before, I´ve been counting down to it since about mid January. I hope you´re all preparing to see it and learn from it and apply it in your lives.