Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Week 21

Chido y Chidito

Hello amigos y familia

Every time i get to the computers i forget what i was going to write so that´s always cool.
First of all im still loving it here in Mexico, every single day something different and hilarious happens here.  If you haven´t had the opportunity to go to mexico, do it, because it´s the best country ever.
So this week we had a fairly good week.  We had to drop one of our really good investigators, because her member husband doesnt want to get married until may or something dumb.  But she will get baptized in a few months so its all good, ill probably still be here kicking it in vegas.  The upside is we have a recent convert with a huge family, and hes helping us work with all of them. We picked up his aunt and her children, but she isnt married, and the husband really wants to hold back the agency of the wife and kids.  I think thats a sign of how my entire mission is going to be, husbands that like to hold back agency, but were working at it.  At least he let the kids go to church. Which takes me to my next story.
Yesterday we had a huge turnout in sacrament (9, but 3 dont count because theyre not exactly investigators yet), and 6 of them were little kids hahah.  The kids are going to be the pioneers to help their parents go to church.  So yesterday in the morning we had to go bring the kids to the church, and i led 7 kids to church, and was in charge of 7 kids under the age of 14 haha.  Good fun, I was yelling "come on my niƱos faster faster"  Good day.
Our 2 older investigators are coming along real nice.  Still slow to understand things, but they have the desire to come to church and to learn, and the husband is quitting coffee and cigarrettes so thats a miracle.
Still working on fixing the ward as well, the elders right before the four of us completely trashed the attitude of the members towards missionaries, and there are a few less actives because of it, so that´s always good.  But were working at it to fix the attitude.
Funny story time.  We were walking and didnt have anything planned, so we were just contacting, and their was an old guy with 2 cute little chihuahas, so we contacted him.  He said "oh hes named chido, the other is named chidito, theyre family"  Now for all yall gringos, chido means cool, so he named his dogs cool and little cool.  Its funnier in person.  But he was so excited about their names, it was great.
Oh also, sometimes random people try and talk to you in english, but they only know random words like "beer", or "balloon" or really random things.
All is well in the great land of mexico, I love you all and to all a good...Week?
Elder Hodson 2

First pic, one of the great hills of Poza Rica
second, We use books from the jehovahs witness to hold the trash up.
third, the best teddy hamster in the world


Monday, January 18, 2016

Week 20

Hermano Eldere Jose Smit Me Bautizo

Well friends,
MEXICO IS GREAT.  Easily has to be the funniest place to live as a gringo in the world.  From drunk people all the time, to people selling brooms from motorcycles, i love it.  Its so funny.  Basically all day today ive just been looking around and laughing, because mexico is funny.  Basically every other house is a store, and they all sell the same stuff.  Coca cola is water here.  People dont even have to leave their house, because people bring everything right to your house, and everything costs 10 pesos (50 C)
So to fulfill my funny story, and explain my title, here goes nothing.  So we were buying tacos the other day, because we found new investigators, and a random drunk short little lady, came up to me and says "Hermano do you know an hermano eldere? He baptized me and i was wondering if you know him." then we explained how our title is always elder, then she says "oh wait i remember his name its hermano johnson, wait no its hermano eldere jose smit, yeah him hermano eldere jose smit baptized me 30 years ago, do you know him?"  Drunk inactives that for some reason got baptized bring good stories right?
On a more serious note, this week was great.  We had interviews with pres, and he basically puts a ton of pressure on his gringos to watch over the mission for him basically.  Its different, but its nice.  So we picked up our work a little more, because im getting more used to this area.  We picked up 3 or 4 new investigators, and we should have a baptism on the 31st.  We had 5 people show up to church too!  But the downside is weve found some drama in the ward ( surprise surprise )  The joys of being a missionary in an area that had problems with missionaries right before you.  But Elder Matul and i are ruthless, and were shooting for 12 baptisms before he goes home, and im shooting for 80 baptisms in my mission!  Its possible, just gotta find the right people.  Our president is trying to bring back the old fire in the mission, so he is focusing really hard on numbers.  Definitely a more straight forward president than california. Its great.
But the work goes on, we go to peter piper pizza on mondays, and work hard during the week.  Keep me in your prayers, we have some big changes we need to bring to the lives of our investigators!
I love it here and i love you all!
Elder Hodson 2

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Week 19

The First week in the mission

Well, not the first week, but the first real week hahha.  First of all its great here, and i have very little time to write this week, so if i dont make it to writing you, sorry.  Second, the keyboards here suck, so excuse my grammar.  Third idk.

So started the week flying to mexico, at 1 am.  Needless to say i didn't sleep for a solid 36 hours, so that was super long.  Got to mexico fine, im alive, no worries.  Had my interview with my president, I was half asleep, and He sent me right away to my new area.  drumroll.... IM IN LAS VEGAS.  I dont know if president just wants to be funny, and send me here because vegas, or what, so this is my second time to las vegas in my mission ahahaha.  So on my bus ride to vegas (5 hours) I fell asleep.... and I passed my stop hahaha.  So I ended up in a different area, called alamo, which is an hour away from vegas... with no phone..... and my crap spanish... but luckily someone was very nice and helped me, and apparently president called the entire mission, so the whole mission, and a lot of members already know me as the person that slept through their stop.  So i made it to my area around 1 am, went to the house, and slept.  Our house is a very small apartment, no kitchen, just an area for studies, and a small room for our two beds.  Apparently the missionaries are in charge of finding Houses here, so it depends on how good you look.  But we have ac, cold water only, a fridge, and a very ghetto washing machine, but its not too bad.  Now that i look back, dang was i spoiled in california.  I don't know how they can spend 1400$ in the states a month for an apartment, then here only pay the evuivalent of something like 300$ or less a month.  So thats pretty weird, but i think its because the native missionaries would live better in the mission, than they ever would in their homes.  Walking a ton here as well, we have lots of hills so thats always fun right?  Grateful for philmont.
My companion, my companion is elder Matul, hes 5'4 or something, from guatemala, and hes freaking awesome.  I never thought i would get a companion thats native, that would push me, but dang, hes amazing.  I swear hes half my size, but i have to run to keep up with him when he walks.  Hes also great in lessons, and is basically reteaching me what my crap comps in cali failed to do.  But hes amazing, he was only baptized a year before he left, and when he came out he basically knew nothing, hes got a really cool story, but another day.  He also has 22 months in the mission, and he is not dying without a fight haha.
The area, the area is great, we have a fairly big area, but we live right next to the church, and a park.  So we excersize in the mornings, and we live close to the church, for those close save bathroom trips.  We already have i think 5 or 6 people on date, and elder matul and i put 3 of those, so yeah, the work is definitely faster here.  When the people here say the work is slow, theyre doing more in 1 or 2 days than cali would do in a week.  It's nuts.
My president is a tall funny guy from arizona, hes always messing around, and making jokes, and just being hilarious.  But he is nuts.  I think the craziest part of this mission is we are only given one hour a day to eat, and he calls it comida (food).  One time a day with members at 2 in the afternoon, and after that you have to wait until night time to eat again.  So thats pretty nuts.  
Oh today for pday, we played hockey with brooms, then went to peter piper pizza, and walmart, we have walmart heck yeah.
Just lots and lots and lots of things that dont make sense in this mission, but ill get accostumed, its like im camping for two years, i can just be dirty all the time, and it doesnt even matter woooh.  Oh also the spanish here is ugly, so pray i can overcome that.
I don't know what else to say, just that its great here, pray that elder matul dies here with me, and i get put with a white companion ahahha...
Love you all.
Excuse the picture, im ugly and we didnt have time to retake the photo, and i was soaking.  

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Im Alive!

I made it here alive dont worry, didnt sleep at all through the night, so this is going to be a long day haha. President and Sister Greer are super happy im here, and they already have me an area and a companion... I'm going to Vegas once again haha. Everything is in Spanish it's great. The area is super pretty, and the work is on fire. But yeah I made it safe and sound, I'll have a bus ride later, and I'll write you on Monday about how it is.
Love you guys so much!

On his way!

We received this sweet text & pic from President Marston on Wednesday, Jan 6th at 12:53 am! 

"Elder Hodson on his way to serve in Mexico.  He is such a good soul, with a warm and loving heart and strong testimony.  His Spanish has improved so much in these 12 weeks.  Both missions will be blessed because of him.  Thank you for raising a righteous son to serve the Lord.  Best regards and love, President Marston"

Week 18

Mexico Time

So I have another day and a half basically until I'm in transit to
Mexico. So that's pretty crazy. I never thought the day would come
that I'd be able to make it to Mexico, but it's here! This week was
fairly slow, lots of our investigators went out of town for the New
Years, and I had to get some stuff done before Mexico and packing, but
it's all good, I'm packed already so that's a relief. Sadly I didn't
baptize anyone before I left this area, but this area is loaded for
the next transfer, so hopefully they make some work out of it, there's
some decent potentials.

New Year's Eve we had to be in our apt early, and New Year's Day was a
normal day, nothing special.

Had to say a few goodbyes already too, there's a couple of family's
that could be my own. Last night we had dinner with the venegas
family, and the mom is from my mission, so we've always gotten along
haha. They're an awesome family though, I'll put some pictures in. We
played some Mexican bingo too. She might come see me in Mexico though!
I'll have to say bye to my other family tonight too haha. Good people
in this ward.

Also shoutout to Nat for the most intricate package I've ever seen haha.

Alls good in the life of elder Hodson. Not much has changed, just in
the waiting game. I have no good stories this week either, or at least
shareable ones.

One of the biggest things I've learned from this area is the impact
members have on lessons. When we have members the lessons go smoother,
the investigators or less actives are much more interested, and it
gives a different opinion on things. We had a lesson with a recent
convert, and they were more interested and asking more questions than
I've ever seen her ask. So for all of you comfortable in your normal
church life, start praying for opportunity to find people to teach, or
give the missionaries your schedule of when you're open to go out with
them, it makes a world of difference for us, and the investigators.

One of the greatest blessings you could have, is having the missionary
lessons in your house with a friend, and watching them make the best
decisions of their life. There's my preach for the week

Love you all!
Elder Hodson 2