Monday, January 31, 2011

Knock, Knock.....

2011 January 31
Dearest Mommy,

Wow, you've got good timing with sending off your letters! I got on the computer like two minutes after you sent off your email haha.

So, I feel like I write some really long emails and your eyes are probably bleeding after scrolling through so much text, so I apologize for that haha. Anyways, here's the excitement from this week:

Monday was transfer day, and, like I said, nothing too exciting happened. They opened up Gervais again, which basically divides the Woodburn area in half, which will definitely make president Pister happy. Other than that, we didn't do anything exciting on P-day.

I do, however, want to tell you about how I've started to lose weight haha. I call it the "mate diet". Just so you know, mate is pronounced "mawtay"-- not "mait" haha. It's an herb that's really popular in Argentina, and it's pretty sweet. It's basically like a pick-me-up that's not against the word of wisdom haha. The nicest thing about it is that it kills your appetite and doesn't make you crash later like when you drink caffeine. Basically, I've been drinking it every morning for the last two weeks, and it's helping a lot. Aside from that we're also running every morning, so I'm dropping weight in a hurry. I'm already back down to about 200 pounds...thank goodness haha. All my clothes fit just about how they did when I started!

Now for the excitement on Tuesday... There was nothing of real importance that happened aside from one interesting contact we had. We were knocking in that complex where we met Craig Young, and we ran into this guy whose name was... ah crap I don't remember. Anyways, to make a long story short, we found out he's from Lebanon and is here living in a cheap apartment to buy expensive cars here and sell them to people back in his country for a LOT more than he buys them here.... pretty rad business at least from my point of view. Then we got on the subject of religion and he told us that he's a muslim and that he lives with a Jewish roommate....!? Anyways, it's sweet because he says that he respects all religions and wants to become familiarized with all of them so that he can make an informed decision about it. He told us about the Quran and how it relates to the bible, and then we talked to him about the book of mormon, and he totally accepted it and wanted to read it. Pretty cool, eh?

Wednesday was a day of solid knocking and nothing too important happened.

Thursday we were really excited for because we had seven appointments set up and all were going to be with a member. Everybody likes stacking up an epic day once in a while (or a normal day if you're in Woodburn). Anyways, the day turned out to be epic all right... an epic FAIL! ALL of our appointments minus one fell though, so we knocked, knocked, knocked, knocked haha. The one bright spot is that after one failed appointment, we went with hermano Muniz and found out that one of our potential investigators is one of his good friends that he had lost contact with for a long time. We ended up teaching him and having a good lesson... hopefully we can get him progressing!

One thing that I really liked about my personal study that I had that morning was something that I read in the book of Mormon from Mosiah 23 which was a good preface to the day we had haha. This is the part of the book where Alma (the older) and his people begin to prosper and are receiving a lot of blessings because they're obeying the commandments. But, this is what it says in verses 21 and 22:
21 Nevertheless the Lord seeth fit to chasten his people; yea, he trieth their patience and their faith.
22 Nevertheless—whosoever putteth his trust in him the same shall be lifted up at the last day. Yea, and thus it was with this people

I feel like my patience was definitely tried and that we received a little chastening, but it still turned out okay because we found a new person to teach and met some new potential investigators.

Okay, now for friday. Friday we had zone leader council where we met together to discuss the future of the mission and the legacy or "culture" that we want to leave behind. It was really interesting to see that from the english elders' perspective, all the things that they thought up were negative... it was pretty sad. I guess that the english mission culture has gone to pot because.. well... they're not obedient for the most part and pretty worthless. Maybe I shouldn't say that, but the truth hurts. Things in the spanish mission are going well... especially for how young all of the misionaries are. I'm excited to see how things will be for the "rising generation" here in the spanish mission. All of the elders are obedient, they're working hard, and they're finding people to teach and baptize. I love it.

After the zone leader coun(sel/cil... I don't know which one to use!), we got back in time for dinner with a spanish member where she destroyed us with tostadas... I had like five, and then she gave us dessert. It wouldn't have been so bad, but we had fasted to start the zone leader... meeting (I'll just avoid the word completely haha) so that we could be more in tune with the spirit, so my stomach had shrunk. Anyways, so so she trashed us with food, and then we were supposed to go play soccer afterwards with a neighboring branch. To make a long story short, I puked my guts out before we started and then was fine to play soccer for a good hour and a half haha.

Saturday, we finally found time to do our planning . We also had a great lesson with a guy named Mario who lives with hermano Muniz... he really wants to change his life, so we're stoked to be able to help him do so! :-)

Sunday... oh Sunday... It started out like a normal day, but ended up being pretty interesting. Hermano Ambriz had been selected to give a talk and they let him know two weeks in advance, and he showed up for sacrament and everything, but this is what happened: Right after they finished with the sacrament and the first person asked to talk started speaking, he walked out of the room and asked me to follow him, so I did. Then he says, "hey, I have to go. Here's a talk by president Monson about gratitude. Read it for me, okay?" I kinda flipped out and said "whAAAAAAAT!?!?!? NO! GIVE YOUR TALK! WHY do you have to leave!?" He said he was sorry and that he had to go, then turned around and left. Long story short, I got thrown under the bus and had to give an impromptu 15 minute talk on gratitude haha... lovely, right? It's okay though... it was a good opportunity for me :-). Other than that, my time is running out, so here's what I want you all to do... look up the talk by D. Todd Cristofferson entitled "give us this day our daily bread" it's awesome.

I love you all and I hope things are going well. Have a great week!


Elder Mooney

Monday, January 24, 2011

People that I've run into on my mission that I knew in Bend: 5

2011 January 24
Dearest Mommy,

Holy cow so this week has been pretty dang exciting!
I'll start in chronological order so as not to cause any confusion. Monday this last week was pretty boring... kind of beige and blase' you could say :-) We took a trip down to Deseret Book and blew a little cash on some good deals that we found. I bought Jesus the Christ in Spanish (actually easier to understand than in English...?) as well as the history of the church in the fullness of times (awesome). Anyways, we had nothing better to do, so we just vegetated (don't know how you can do that without a TV) in the apartment reading our new purchases haha. Aside from that on Monday, we ended a little early and decided to hit up a couple of appointments as well as visit a family in the group (the Vildozolas) whose son got sick. We went and talked to them for a little while and saw how their boy was doing. Ultimately they ended up asking if we could give him a blessing. I was thinking about this, and it kind of struck me just looking back in my mission. If someone had asked me to give a blessing in the first six months I was out here, I would have freaked out and been scared to death, but now it's not even that big a deal. It's an awesome experience to place your hands on someone's head and really know that the words that come to your mind to speak aren't your own. It's strange at times because you get impressions from God where it makes you stop and think "I'm promising him WHAT!?" The thing that's cool though is that it always happens! I have a real testimony of the power of priesthood blessings.

Aside from that, on Tuesday we had an awesome lesson with Oscar and Franci... man they are prepared to hear the gospel... it's awesome! We had originally planned to teach them the gospel of Jesus Christ, but as we started talking to them, we were able to answer the questions that they had in their hearts and really lead them to understand more fully the importance of the church, baptism, authority, the nature of God... it sounds a little all over the place, but the spirit was super strong, and they said when they find out (not if) that what we're saying is true, they want to be baptized! SCHWEET!

On Wednesday, this was pretty much the best thing ever. Seeing as we couldn't email on MLK day, we decided to take our time to do it then and also cut off a couple of hours from our P-day to do something exciting: Go to the Nike employee store!!!!! I hope you're not gonna be too mad, but I spent a little more than I had in my account back home... haha. The Credit will definitely cover it, but yeah, I got a couple new pairs of running shoes, a pair of basketball shorts, and a running jacket... I love you Mom and Dad :-) That store is absolutely sweet! There is so much to see and so much to buy! Honestly, I could spend $1000 in twenty minutes easily. Dad, there's some pretty sweet golf equipment in there and if you're looking for shoes, holy Moses every color, shape, and size... I'm hoping we can go again and if you would like, I'll get you guys some stuff too... just let me know what you're looking for and I'll get it and ship it home. The running shoes that I bought usually sell for $115 and I got them for $53, so the deals are pretty sweet... instead of being outrageous, it's fairly priced :-). Anyways, after blowing my wad at Nike, we had a couple of amazing lessons; one with Griselda, and the other with a guy named Demetrio. With Griselda, we taught her about... well... just about everything she wanted to know. She had a TON of good questions, so we spent the whole time talking to her about them and getting her pumped on coming to church (she didn't though... Grrr..). With Demetrio, he's a guy who lives in the same house as a member, hermano Muniz, so we went over and visited, and got to talking about religion. The one thing that was super funny about that lesson was the fact that from the beginning he was telling us about how other churches had rejected him because he believed he could become a god. They told him that it was blasphemous blah blah blah, but he himself whipped out Romans 8:16 that says

16The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:
17And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together.
18For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.
Then he went on to rattle off where Jesus Christ is talking to the Pharisees and asks them in John 10:34 "Is it not written in your law, I said, ye are gods?"

Anyways, it was super funny to see how stoked he was on that one aspect of the gospel. Hooray for eternal progression :-)

Aside from that, Thursday was a god ol' planning day where we cleaned our apartment, splurged and ate at Red Robin (I didn't tack that on to the home card, don't worry), and started to plan. Just as we started to plan, we saw someone moving stuff into the empty apartment below us, so we asked if we could help, and she was more than willing to say yes haha. We ended up unloading an entire U-haul truck by ourselves into this dinky one-room apartment for this lady and her two kids. She's a super sweet hispanic lady from... Sonora I think is what she said? Anyways, it was good to help someone out, and bad in that we did absolutely no planning for the new week haha. Oh well.

Friday, we had an exchange with the Hillsboro elders, and it was my turn to do the traveling, so I jumped the grenade by heading out there. It turned out to be a pretty sweet day... except for the fact that I almost got us killed! Twice! Oh my goodness I don't know what the story is, but it was pretty sketchy driving on my part. Elder Nichols (the elder I was with) doesn't know his area very well because he's only been there for like six weeks, so I was driving and my "navigator" was pretty lost. Anyways, to make it short, I ran a red light (not too red mind you... just a little pink :-)), and almost got us killed in an intersection where a car pulled out and about ran into us haha. We didn't have a terrible amount of success, but we found a couple of cool families knocking and got to play soccer with the branch that night at around 7:00. Ooh! We also got to eat with a family from SD that were charger fans! It was nice to be around my own kind for once haha.

Saturday we got transfer calls and I found out that I'm staying with Van Hook for another tansfer here in Beaverton which will be good... we need one more transfer to baptize Oscar and Franci along with Griselda haha. Oh, it was also the most worthless day ever because we spent the whole day trying to clean up the stake list as far as spanish members are concerned (yeah, it's gonna be a long project haha). It reminds me a lot of Bend when Dad would go out cleaning up the Elders quorum list, except now we're doing it for like six wards and a branch haha. What a MESS! One highlight from Saturday was that we met a guy named Craig Young. He was this crazy guy in his 50's who was the manager of some apartments where we decided to knock. At first I thought he was calling us over to tell us to get lost, but he ended up saying "are you dudes Elders?" We said yes and he said "hang on a sec, I'll go grab another chair man." He then ran into his house and grabbed a third chair to set outside so that we could sit along-side him. He turned out to be a pretty sweet dude... super crazy, like I said, but sweet. He's a good ol' ex-hippie from Southern California who's lived up here for about 20 years. He was telling us about how he was a meth addict for like 30 years "but not in the way where I let it affect my morals, just in that I had it like a cup of coffee in the morning, you know, to keep me going thruout the day" to put it in his words haha. We talked about a whole bunch of stuff and invited him to church, so we'll see if he comes in a couple of weeks. He likes the Mormon church better than any other because he says they're not wrong like all the others haha.

Other than that, Sunday was a super random day because I ran into Bethany Nettleton! What the crap!? She's the fifth person that I've run into on my mission that I knew from Bend! It's pretty funny though. I saw her and thought, wow she looks really familiar... then she turned around and I saw her face and just said WHAT THE HECK!? We talked for a minute and her brother said if we want to have dinner with them we can call them one of these days, so we'll probably do that. Gosh it's weird seeing people that I knew from before the mission though haha.

Anyways, that's bout the excitement from my end. It sounds like you guys are having an absolute blastie with all the parties and stuff that are going on. Dad, I'll be sending you at least a little something for your birthday, don't worry. I love you guys so much have a great week!

Con carino,

Elder Kurt Mooney

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

2 weeks-worth!

2011 January 19
Dear Mom,

Okay, so I don't have much time to write today, and I've gotta try to get two week's worth of information into this email, so I apologize in advance if it seems like a random vomiting of information on the page haha.
Okay, so starting with last week on Monday (the 4th) We went to Powell's here in Beaverton and I shelled out a little money to buy a sweet visual Spanish/English dictionary. After that, we went to the apple store that was right by it and drooled over the super sweet computers and more importantly the iPads! Oh my goodness I love them! Anyways, enough of that trunky thought.
On Tuesday the 5th, we had zone conference up in St. John's, and it was awesome. We learned about the importance of extending invitations because through them we can help people to change, repent, and come closer to Christ. The other amazing thing about zone conference that was sweet was the fact that it was hosted by the Tongan wards!!!! Oh I LOVE the Tongan people and I LOVE THEIR FOOD!!!! They absolutely destroyed us with all different types of pork, ham, stir fry, sweet potatoes, and a whole bunch of stuff that I don't even know what it's called haha. If I ever had to go to English, I would want to serve in the Tongan wards for sure.

After that on Wednesday the 6th, we had kind of an interesting day haha. We canceled district meeting because of zone conference, but got roped into doing some service for a family in the ward... it was interesting service because what we ended up doing was helping put some super old-school windows into a tree house! When I say old, I mean OLD! These are turn of the century pulley windows if you know what I'm talking about. They have two panes and one goes up while the other goes down and have counterbalance weights attached that fit inside the framework of the window to hold them up or down. Anyways, I definitely learned some new skills as far as construction is concerned haha. Other than that excitement, we knocked a lot of doors because we didn't have any set appointments. One funny thing that happened that day was that we knocked into this lady who had a huge photo of a girl in a white dress and another guy in a tux outside of the Portland temple. We asked her if she had some family members who were members and she said no, so we pointed out the pictures and she said "oh, I have no idea about what that building is, it was just really beautiful and thought it would be a good spot for a quinceanara picture for my daughter."...! Kind funny eh? (Editor note: I'm guessing 'quinceanara' is something to do with 15th birthday celebration?)

Anyways, on Thursday the 7th, it was our day for planning, so we decided to do something to shake it up a little bit, so we took a trip to Home Depot for a little bit to try to find a whiteboard. We found something that would work, but realized that it was an 8'x4' ginormous board, so we had to get it cut in half... then try to fit it into our Malibu.... haha it was an adventure, but it worked :-) The other funny thing was that Van Hook asked if we should get a hammer to put in the drywall anchors we got for it, and I said "nah I'm sure we've got one in the apartment that we can use." Besides, six bucks for a hammer is a lot of cashola when you're a missionary, ya know? So anyways, we got home, yanked out the whiteboard, and went to put it up in the apartment. We didn't have a hammer. We did, however,
have a little sauce pan that worked just dandily :-) Long story short, now we have two huge ol whiteboards in our apartment haha.

On Friday the 8th, we didn't have too much excitement, just an exchange with one of the new elders in the district named elder Weyburn. It was a total blastie and he's a great elder! We knocked the whole day in the rain and found a couple of sweet investigators. One of them is this awesome lady named Katherine :-) She's a sweet old 65 year old lady who smokes like a chimney, but is one of the most interesting people I've ever met. She has been to every city in the US with a population of over 45,000 people, worked for NASA, and is extremely intelligent. When she first saw us after opening the door, she looked straight up angry, but we talked to her there in the door for a good while and then she let us in. Turns out she's had a lot of contact with the church and actually considered getting baptized for a while, but the English missionaries (GRRRRR!) pushed her WAY too much and she stayed away from the church since. Anyways, we ended up meeting with her again and I'll tell ya about it in the Sunday paragraph :-P.

Saturday the 9th was...well... one of those days. Elder Van Hook and I didn't find anyone and knocked the whole dang day in the freezing cold rain, and didn't have a dinner scheduled, so we decided to treat ourselves to some ribs for dinner that his mommy had sent him. Yum!

On Sunday the 10th, we had a good 50 people in church... it was sweet! We also had a lesson with Katherine again, and I gave her my copy of Jesus the Christ to read (if any of you haven't read that book, do it.) as well as a book of mormon for her. She promised me she'd read them both, so yeah it was a good visit. The one thing that kills me is that she smokes a TON, and her house just reeks like smoke! Oh my goodness like I have to leave my suits outside on a hanger to fumigate them because it gets on your clothes and stuff... it's gnarly!
So now onto the week of the 11th through the 17th haha.

On Monday the 17th, we had a freaking sweet day! We decided to have a zone activity and go to the coast! We cruised on over to Seaside, ate at some place called Pig n Pancakes, played soccer on the beach, and more or less acted like a bunch of missionary dorks that we are haha.

On Tuesday, we had a sweet time with our district over in Portland and afterwards for elder Hawkins' birthday, we ate at a super scrumptious sushi joint in East Portland. I have never had sushi so good before in my life! Aside from that excitement, we had a good lesson with Andrea and Cathy about the importance of the ten commandments and how obedience relates to eternal progression... I feel like sometimes we lay down some heavy doctrine, but it's sweet! Other than that, we taught the Flores family (less-actives with a non-member ex-husband that still lives with them?) and got them to come out to church at the end of the story :-)

On Wednesday Geronimo and Alicia failed on us again, so we dropped them and went and taught his sister instead, which was awesome! The only problem is that we ended up going over on our appointment, getting stuck in traffic, and showing up 40 minutes late to dinner with our ward mission leader brother Whisenant! Ah man I think the English members just hate us because we're super late to everything all the time. I mean, we always call ahead, but good grief it's a joke! It's just part of hispanic culture haha.

Thursday wasn't anything exciting, we just had a good lesson with a new investigator named Damien, planned, and yeah haha.

Friday was a day of failed appointments and sadness, but there was one highlight. So I found out that we can decide what goes on our nametags, so I... ahem... customized mine. Maybe I'll have to send you a picture of it sometime haha. It actually says Elder Mooney-Luna... it's like it's bilingual or something
:-P I thought it would be funny anyways, and it makes it easier for hispanic people :-)

Saturday, we had an awesome appointment with a new investigator where the spirit was super strong, but unfortunately, we totally did something idiotic. We thought his name was Marcos, so we called him that throughout the lesson, but at the end of everything, we looked in our planners and realized that Marcos is his neighbor across the hall and that his real name was Gerardo! D'oh! It's okay though... that's why we have repentance, right? haha.

So aside from that, there were only really two things that stuck out to me on Sunday. Number one: we had 65 people in church! Number two: we had a guest speaker who is a Spanish professor at PCU say something extremely funny. For people from Spain, the word "idiota" is like saying idiot in English-- it isn't really that offensive. However, saying that to a congregation of people from Mexico, it's kinda like calling someone a dumb#%&, so it was really funny to hear the gasp of exasperation that came over our little group when she said it haha.

That was about all the excitement from the last two weeks though... holy cow this is quite the little epistle that I wrote! Well, I hope your eyes aren't bleeding after reading so much text, but I love you and hope you have a great week!


Elder Kurt Mooney

Monday, January 10, 2011

Lost camera memory card

Dearest Mommy,

Well, that's kind of a kick in the.... pants... haha. I can't believe that those pictures got lost in the mail... that sucks! That's six months of pictures absolutely gonzo if that doesn't get recovered. Oh well I guess... that's how we learn lessons sometimes-- the hard way :-P. I had an inkling when I put that in the box, but I never thought it'd get lost dangit. Meh. That's why we take pictures and let other people take them too. I'm sure I can salvage at least a good 50 pictures or so if I ask around... I know it's not 300, but it's better than losing all of them, ya know?

Aside from that little downer, this week has been pretty sweet! I feel really bad because I can't remember all of the stuff that I had written down in my planner to tell you guys (I left it in the apartment), but I at least wanted to let you know about the blastie we had today for our zone activity. We took a little trip to the coast :-) We cruised on over to Seaside today and had a blast doing absolutely nothing productive haha.

I feel bad, but I really can't think of anything we did without blitzing trhough my planner, so maybe I'll just pull a double duty for next week on the email.... I can't really think what to write... yeah I'll just try to write more next week okay? I love you guys so much.

Talk to ya later!

-Elder Mooney

Monday, January 3, 2011

Welcome New Year 2011!

2011 January 3
Dear Mom,

Well, there was quite a bit of interesting stuff that happened this week out here on the mission, starting with last Monday, of course haha. I think I'll preface each day with a little teaser from what happened. The one for Monday is "OHSU, Voodoo, and Powell's Books too!"

We decided to take a little trip out to Portland with the elders from Gresham and Portland first to visit an elder in the hospital, and then hit up Voodoo doughnuts afterwards. The elder we visited is elder Nielsen. He's in there for what president Dyches calls a cystic fibrosis "tune up" because that's what he has. We had a good time talking with him for a little while, and one entertaining thing happened while we were there in the hospital. Elder Nielsen has this little contraption that helps him to clear his airways a little better called "the vest". Basically it's this little vest thing that you hook up to your chest and plug it into a machine. When you turn it on, it pounds your chest with air and makes you talk in a voice that sounds like you're driving on a washboarded dirt road at 50 mile an hour haha. Elder Nimmer, who just finished his mission, decided to try it out for a couple minutes, and it was entertaining to say the least.

After all that excitement, we cruised over to Voodoo. If you guys haven't heard of Voodoo Doughnuts, you should definitely consider going if you're taking a trip to Portland in the near future. It's right off of Burnside about a block away from the Burnside skate park (yes, like the one on Tony Hawk's pro skater), and they make some killer doughnuts! I got a banana fritter, and one other elder got the original "voodoo doughnut", which consists of a doll-shaped doughnut that is jelly-filled and has a little pretzel "pin" in it like a voodoo doll haha. After that, we decided to visit Powell's and pick up some good books... man Portland is entertaining!

Okay, my title for Tuesday would have to be "Petey is my pal", and I'll tell ya why. I went on an exchange with the elders in Aloha, and it turns out that they live in a member's house who happens to have a dog named Petey... he's almost more of an attention fiend than Max! He's super sweet though I love him. I'd be trying to study at the table, and he'd come right up and lay his head in my lap and look up at me, waiting to be petted haha. Needless to say, he got his sought-after attention.

All right, on Wednesday, I would have to entitle it either "ch-ch-ch-chia!" or "Geronimo! Geronimo! Geronimo!" and here's why: the Geronimo title comes from the name of the boyfriend of one of our investigators who is a member. The problem is that every time we set an appointment with him, he's super, SUPER flaky. Long story short, we set three separate appointments with him and he failed all three in the same day haha. The chia title comes from the Farbe family with whom we ate that night. We got talking to them, and she's a super healthy foods kind of lady. She made us waffles from home ground... well, she said it's not wheat, it's something healthier that they used to grow before wheat, natural maple syrup from the Amish (?) and a couple other homemade preserves and stuff like that. Anyways, it was super good stuff, and it made me feel better about pounding down three waffles haha. I don't feel bad about it though because I didn't' have a lunch. Anyways, we got on the subject of chia seeds for some reason and next thing you know, she gave us a five pound bag and committed us to eating a cup of it a day... I'm doing it but it's a little weird.. I feel like maybe I'll turn into a chia pet or something and have all these little sprouts growing out of me all over my noggin instead of hair haha.

On Thursday, I'm gonna call it "Time+Mooney=Roush ?" because of what happened. There was once a missionary in this mission who talked... a LOT. We would go on exchanges and knock doors and spend an hour in a doorway talking to some dang paisa about how he used to live in "el rancho" picking coffee beans for a living and where they used to do it and what's the best kind of terrain to pick it in, yadda yadda yadda. Basically, he talked a lot and it was ridiculous. Anyways, I feel like I'm becoming that elder because I talk a lot! It really is a benefit at dinners though. I talk most of the time and don't have time to stuff my face, so I usually have trouble trying to finish even one plate :-).

Friday I will entitle "More click-click and Less knock-knock" because of what we learned about in Zone leader council... not sure why I capitalized zone, but whatevs. We had zone leader council, and it turns out that per instruction from SLC, they want us to make a little bit of a game plan change. They want us as missionaries to use our "less effective" proselyting time (i.e. knocking doors) to become familiarized with the new Now, this is extremely interesting, and I'm kinda stoked on it. The one thing that I'm asking is that you as readers of this that are members of the church go and get on that website. The church is making a huge ad campaign to get people familiarized with the church and who we are as individuals instead of learning by rumors what we believe. I want you all to go to and create a member profile... it's super easy! Not only that, but then I can show people I talk to who some members of the church are and what we believe. Do that for me, okay? Make an FHE of it or something haha.

Okay, Saturday, or "Saturday, dreary day" (sorry, I ran out of creativity at the end of this email haha) was just a crap day because we had all appointments fall through and didn't find anyone. I was kinda hating life, but that's okay because of what happened on Sunday.

We'll call this "the Christmas miracle!...8 days late!" because of what happened to us at church. We changed times to 1:00 in the afternoon, and it was ridiculous! We had more than 35 people show up to the group without four of the key families there! No investigators, but that's beside the point haha. I'm super pumped that now we might just be able to strengthen the group and get things going here :-).

Well, that was about the excitement... sorry if my emails are a little rambly, but it's all I've got for now. I love you guys so much and thank you for all your love and support. Oh and you asked how does it feel to tower over everyone else in the Spanish work? It's pretty fun... why do you think I've started liking basketball so much more? hahaha just kidding, but seriously. I kinda like it, but then I always get a reality check when we meet with other missionaries or English ward members haha. That family in the picture is probably the shortest family of the ones I've taught haha. Fun fact of the day: if you want to call someone short in Spanish, you would say that they are "chaparrito" haha.

I love you guys. Happy New Year!!!!!!

-Elder Kurt Mooney