Monday, August 14, 2017

Week 57: Guardar los compromisos (Save the Commitments)

P-Day Water Ballon Fight Participants!!!

Hola todos (hello everyone) from San Pedro Sula or as the Catrachos say, "Jan Pedro." This week has been a pretty interesting week for sure. First of all, this change is just flying by. We are already in the 4th week and it feels like Elder Cox got here like half an hour ago. Time is sure flying and before we know it we'll have changes again.

So this last week we had interviews with Presidente Bush. Mission presidents and wives are basically your mom and dad while on the mission, so it's always nice to sit down and have a chat with him. We used to not have interviews every change, but now we do and I like it like that because President always has a ton of great ideas for helping out our missionary experience. So that was great.

So our baptismal date for the 19th of August that we had unfortunately fell through, but nevertheless Elder Cox and I are moving forward with a perfect brightness of hope for God and all of our investigators. We have one investigator that is really cool. He's in his younger twenties and he is super pilas. Hermana Bush in our last zone conference made a big emphasis on working with younger people and technology and it is cool to see how well it works. One of the cool things about teaching younger people is that they are kind of in a moment of finding their own path and learning how they want the rest of their life to play out and what better message than ours to share with them. Elder Cox and I have lately been focusing on trying to help our investigators keep commitments so we have kinda come up with this game plan of coming up with some easier commitments that they will have an easier time keeping to help them do a kinda line upon line process. It's been working well. We have done stuff like left videos for people to watch and inviting people to look at Stuff that the younger people will have an easier time doing that might help them get into good scripture studying habits are have the desire to read the scriptures.
Today was super fun. Two districts in our zone played capture the flag with water balloons. It was our district (San Pedro Sula) against the others (?La ideal? not sure on the name). Needless to say our district won. It was super fun and it got the zone involved and helped build district unity. 

Well, that's pretty much it for this week! Thanks for all the support!
-Elder Dority

Monday, August 7, 2017

Week 56: Fechas! (Dates!)

At night on a bridge with Elder Cox

Hola todos! (Hello Everyone!)

So this last week has definitely been a good week here in San Pedro Sula 2. My new companion has definitely been pushing me to work just a little harder and try to complete with President's advice of finding "just one more." We were able to help two people accept baptismal dates for the 19th and 26th of this month! That would be super cool because this area hasn't seen a baptism for quite a while.

It has been a kind of a struggle helping people accept a baptismal date. During the lessons with these two people we decided to focus more on talking about how accepting a baptismal date is an act of faith and that if they do it the Lord will respond to their act of faith. It went really well and now we have two solid investigators with baptismal dates.

With one of the investigators that accepted a baptismal date, we went to teach her the Word of Wisdom. With this investigator I had previously taught the Word of Wisdom with my last companion, but she had not accepted the commitment to living commandment. Elder Cox and I were talking a lot about what we could do to help her accept the Word of Wisdom. We decided that we would focus more on helping her understand that obeying this law requires having faith in Christ because really when Joseph Smith revealed this law he was just a mouth-piece for God. The lesson went really well and she committed to keeping the Word of Wisdom!

Being a co-district leader with Elder Cox has been really good. It's nice because we can ask for advice from each other about what we need to do to help out the ZLs and APs.

District Meeting-DL's, ZL's, AP's

Well, that's pretty much it from San Pedro this week. Thanks for all the support and I hope you guys have a great week!

-Elder Dority

Monday, July 31, 2017

Week 55: Cambios y Cumpleaños (Changes and Birthdays)

Elder Dority and Elder Cox

Hey everyone! So this week has definitely been a crazy week because of transfers. On Wednesday (my birthday) I had to say good-bye to Elder Alvarado and hello to my new companion Elder Cox, my first gringo companion since I was trained. What's even crazier is that Elder Cox and I already know each other from the MTC because we were in the same district and dorm there! So we came at the same time! He's really cool. He's from Las Vegas so whenever he introduces himself everyone says that he is from Sin City and funny stuff like that.

CCM Dorm
CCM District at the Guatemala Temple

Elder Alvarado was sent to a place called Naco. We had Denny's on Wednesday to say good-bye to him. Probably the number one thing I learned from Elder Alvarado would be to do more service. He is a very helping and service-oriented person and I really like that about him and I am trying to apply that more to my mission and life.

It's been pretty interesting now having a gringo comp because we do our planning in English and not Spanish and there is just a lot of stuff like that that we normally wouldn't do in English. I like it because I can express myself all the time and it's a lot easier communicating with him. He's super obedient and likes to work hard, so I am hopeful for this change with him.

This week has been kinda crazy with our investigators. So we are kind of in the dilemna that almost all of investigators have become eternal investigators and we have been worried about losing a lot of them and then having no investigators (because as all missionaries know you can find yourself without investigators fast and out of nowhere). So we have been going kinda crazy on contacting and taking advantage of the energy a missionary gets with changes. It's been cool to see how the Lord is still preparing people here. One thing I've noticed is that when you talk to people who are outside and not just knocking on doors the people become way better for receiving the message. I believe it's because God puts people in our path.

I also got to celebrate my 20th birthday on Wednesday by receiving a package from my family which was super nice. Now I've got lots of candy, cake, and probably the coolest fidget spinner ever.

Thank you everyone for your support and I hope that you guys all have a great week!
-Elder Dority

We were Greenies Once... Elder Dority and Cox arriving in Honduras together 

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Week 54: Hello everyone from San Pedro Sula!

Elder Dority and Elder Alvarado

Hello everyone from San Pedro Sula!

Not a whole lot has gone on this week, but we did have some success in the work! My companion and I have been working hard trying to finish up this change on a high note. This upcoming Wednesday we have changes and tonight's the night when we find out who will be going and who will be staying. My time with Elder Alvarado has been great and I am grateful for all the lessons I have learned.

So this week the other elders had a baptism and we were able to bring an investigator to the baptism to see what it is like. We were able to bring the investigator who is a professor and likes to greet us with a high-five and fistbump. She really liked the baptism and is progressing really well. I am really hopeful for her. Taking investigators to the baptism is super great. They can feel the spirit really well and they can feel the importance and see the beauty of a baptism.

Honestly nothing else has really happened this week. I am pretty sure that the next week should be a lot more exciting.

I hope that you all have a really great week!

-Elder Dority

Monday, July 17, 2017

Week 53: Un año... ¿en serio? (A Year... Really?)


Hello everyone!

 So let's get the biggest news out of the way this week... I had Carls Jr. for the first time in over a year today. Just kidding, that's not the great news. I did complete a year this last week though! Last Thursday I completed one year of being in Central America! Wow it is so weird to think that it was a year ago that I was entering the Guatemalan MTC as one of the biggest newbies of all time. I've definitely come a long ways since that point for sure. I can now at least say that I somewhat know Spanish (I really only speak Catracho, but it's close enough); I have a much stronger testimony of the restored church of Jesus Christ; I know what the real definition of faith is now; and this skinny, white, red-head can survive the crazy life of San Pedro Sula. Hahah! It has definitely been quite a time of growing and adapting. I am pretty optimistic for this part of my mission that I am starting. I think that I've gotten past some of the hardest hurdles of culture shock and language barrier and now I can focus more of my mind on preaching the gospel. Of course that is what I have been doing the whole time, but now I can do it a lot easier, so we'll see what these last eleven months bring to me.

Caption translations at the bottom of the Blog

This last week was really good, especially because we had a zone conference with President and Hermana Bush. It was great. We talked a lot about how as a mission we need to have lots of love and high expectations and how we need to be using the Book of Mormon more as our main tool for helping people know that this church is really the Lord's kingdom on the earth again. It went great and I definitely learned a lot that will be applied into the work here in San Pedro Sula.

Zone Conference San Pedro Sula

So my mom (by the way shout out to my mom for the throwback on the blog) last week asked me to think about why the Lord has called me to Honduras. I have been thinking about that all week. I have been able to help a lot of people find the restored gospel, but even if I hadn't helped those people I know that the companions I have had and my President would be great reasons for the Lord sending me here. I still feel like the Lord has lots of things in store for me here, but nothing that has happened up to this point has been by chance. That's for sure.

Thanks for all the support and disfruten la semana! (enjoy the week!)
-Elder Dority

We'll have to see how well Mom translated the #'s on the shirt. (Still looked pretty white! Way to go Elder Dority. Your laundry skills are exceptional!)

#One Year
#let's go to San Pedro
#I love you
#mission comps names
#areas served
#27 June (release date)
#baleadas (favorite food)
#coca cola
#San Pedro

Monday, July 10, 2017

Week 52: Mi mamá me matará por no mandar fotos (My Mom will kill me for not sending photos)

So...this is what happens when you don't send your Mom pictures... (She inserts her own!)

Hola mis queridos! (Hello my dears!)
So this week has been a pretty eventful and good week. A lot has been going on with the fourth of July, investigators, interviews, splits, and the dreaded gripe (flu, pronounced greep-ay).
So Tuesday we had interviews with President Bush. They, of course, were really good. At the beginning of my mission we wouldn't have interviews and conferences with the president as often, but now we have one interview and one conference with him every change. I like it like that because it gives us more of a chance to learn from the president and his wife. I do have to give a shout out to Hermana Bush for providing some pretty outstanding brownies at the interviews!
Following the interviews we got to go on splits with our zone leaders because my companion is the district leader. It was fun because I got to go with a missionary named Elder Coeto who is Mexican and my favorite latino accent would definitely have to be the Mexican one. I got to help him commit one of his investigators to living the Word of Wisdom which was cool because I haven't done that for a little bit now. Hopefully we will be able to do that with one of our investigators soon. Splits are great though because it gives you the chance to learn different ways of teaching and it gives lots of good ideas on new teaching methods.
This week Elder Alvarado and I sure did a great deal of hiking. We received a reference from one of our investigators that her parents wanted us to visit them because she had talked to them about the missionaries visiting her. She told us that she lived in a place called Santanita. Santanita, turns out, is on the top of the mountain. We started our hike up there with a member because we had no idea where it was. We were wondering around on the top of this mountain looking for this couple and we couldn't find them because it got dark and we decided to head back. Everyone was pretty dead the next day in church because it was a super steep incline. Hahaha! Good times.
Everyone is also getting attacked by the gripe right now, which being interpreted, means the cold or flu. My comp has had symptoms for forever now. It hit me a few days ago, but I went nuts on the vitamins and it went away after a day or two. All the Hondurans have the gripe right now and it kinda sucks. People try and use it to tell us that they don't want to visit with us, but we tell them that we are already sick... so backfire. Hahah!
The work is progressing. We are trying hard to help a lot of progressing investigators accept a baptismal date and do everything necessary for baptism, but it's all been kinda falling apart, but we have faith! We will have a baptism!
Well, that's about it for this week! I finished the Book of Mormon in Spanish for the first time and I can say with a surety that it's true! Joseph Smith really was a prophet and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day saints really is Christ's kingdom once again on the earth!

-Elder Dority
 ...and now... last week.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Week 51: ¡Feliz Cumpleaños Múrica! ( Happy Birthday Múrica!)

Happy Birthday 'Murica!!!

Well, it's officially official. We are now halfway through the year 2017. We are also halfway through this change. I am also at the halfway mark in my mission, reaching the one year mark in about a week. Lots of halves. Pretty crazy. 

So the work is coming along really well. Alvarado and I are working hard because the Lord has definitely blessed us with our investigators, so we have to show some gratitude for that by working hard with the investigators. There is a possibility of a baptism happening this week, but that's not for sure. If not this week it will happen soon. All of our investigators are progressing pretty well and quite of few of them have accepted a baptismal date for the end of July. I'm pretty optimistic. I'm hoping that we'll get at least one or two baptisms with Alvarado still here. 

Today was a pretty good day because President and Sister Bush had a p-day with the zones San Pedro Sula and Valle de Sula. It was super fun. President Bush was on my volleyball team and we kicked trash. We celebrated the 4th of July one day early by eating hot dogs, watermelon, and chips. President sure knows how to throw a party. Hahaha! 

Everything is going pretty well here in San Pedro Sula. The city life is definitely growing on me. It's interesting how we have to work in different ways from how we would do things in places like La López or Santa Bárbara. The other day we printed out a list of all the members in one section of our area so we could track them all down and try and help reactivate some members. It was cool cause we found a super pilas lady. We'll see how it goes.

Well, thanks for all the support! Happy birthday 'murica! Hope you all enjoy the fireworks!
-Elder Dority

Sunday, July 2, 2017

Week 50: Lo siento por ser aburrido (Sorry for Being Boring)

"Baleadas bigger than my torso!" (Not a new photo...but one well worth remembering!)

Hey everyone! So this week was a pretty tranquila week. Nothing too crazy going on. We had stake conference this week and there was a pretty good turn out. It's cool to see all the Mormons in San Pedro Sula. The church grows really well here. This week we ran into a guy that got baptized in the San Pedro Sula ward (where I am right now) back in 2006 or something like that. Since then the ward sacrament meeting attendance has about doubled in size which was super cool to hear. It'll be interesting to see how the church increases over the years here. 

Things are going really well with our investigators right now. We have quite a few that are now in the progressing stage. They are all pretty solid and most of them have attended or are attending church. We have to work on putting baptismal dates for the investigators. Nothing ever goes to plan in the mission, but we are hopeful that we can have some baptisms in July. We are definitely working hard for it.

This area is pretty interesting because it's a lot of city. I'm more used to living in areas that are filled with lots of houses and little businesses. Here, the houses are all larger and we are finding it harder to find those who will listen to us if we ring their doorbell. A lot of the area is businesses too, so the area is big, but a lot of it we aren’t able to teach in. It's interesting, but I am getting used to it. It's a lot more of working together with the members, which I like. I think it turns out better for the investigator like that in the end.

It's pretty crazy that June is now coming to a close. It does not feel like it was six months ago when I was celebrating the New Year's and what not. The time has definitely been flying by. Pretty soon I'll be coming up on the one year mark. That should be a party. I've heard that the heat has cranked up a little bit there.

My sister said Utah has been hovering around 100° or so. The heat has still been going strong here and it will probably stay like that until mid-November or something like that. At night, it "dips down" to like 80°. Hahaha! I've gotten pretty used to it though. I only need one fan to sleep and sometimes I turn it off in the night because it is too cold. I can't sleep in A/C because it is too cold.

I don't have any pictures for this week... well at least I don't think I do. Hahaha! I didn't bring my camera because I thought we were going to be playing sports at the church and that I would be returning to the house, but we ended up eating right after and then coming back to the church to write, so sadly I don't have pictures to send.

Sorry that nothing too exciting happened this week. Maybe next week something will happen. Thanks for all the support!

-Elder Dority

Monday, June 19, 2017

Week 49: ¿No puede salir bien ni una sola cosa?

Playing around with my camera...

Hey everyone! So this week has definitely been an interesting one. Pretty memorable I'd say.

So transfers... I am happy to say that I am staying in San Pedro Sula 2 with Alvardo for another transfer. We're doing good together so I was glad that we were staying together for another month and a half. We've been working hard to have our new investigators become progressing investigators. This week we definitely had some patience tested. I think it's kinda funny because this last week pretty much confirmed my suspicion that working with members is bad luck. So we had like three appointments with some of our most pilas investigators this last week. We were pretty excited for the visits and even more so because we got members lined up to go visit with us. Sadly, however, every appointment fell through and I was honestly a little frustrated because SOMETHING always has to happen. My comp and I laughed about it though, vowing never to ask for member help again. Hahaha! I'm pretty sure God just wants us to learn patience, like always. We'll still work with members. Hahaha! It's just kinda funny looking back on it.

During the week I was a little upset though because so much fell through. I was kinda like, "Can't one thing just go right?" That's where one of our investigators steps in. So we are teaching this one lady who is a little more advanced in years, but extremely young at heart. She's the best. She is super smart and is a professor at the local university. She likes to greet us with a high-five and fist bump. So we were teaching her about the Book of Mormon and at the end we asked her if she would pray to know if it was true. She was kinda hesitant about it and that didn't sit well with us. We then asked her if she believed God could answer her pray and she was all, "Oh, I don't know." We then asked if she had ever prayed before and she told us no. Well... that's good to know. Turns out she's atheist. We were not under that impression because she told us she assists another church, but it turns out she just goes there because her friend invites her. We didn't have time to teach more, so we pulled out a pamphlet of lesson two which is The Plan of Salvation. We told her that she needed to read it all at the same time. She accepted. We left, but we totally spaced putting another appointment and inviting her to church. A few days later she called us and told us she had read the pamphlet and that she wanted to fix another visit. That was unexpected. So we got an appointment set for this Friday. On Sunday we were waiting for church to start and in she walks! It was like, "No way!" It was a tender mercy for all the stuff that had fallen through this week.

Water... Water... Water...

Thank goodness for tile floors and a great broom!

Other than that we had a fun day yesterday cleaning the house. We came home to find it flooded. Hahaha! I guy came and fixed a leaky faucet we had, but the house got flooded from a bad tube under the sink. Luckily nothing important was damaged and the house flooring is only tile, with a couple of brooms we were able to clean it up relatively fast. It was just kinda funny to open the door and find water everywhere.

Well, have a great week!

-Elder Dority

Call out to one of my favorite missionaries... This one's for YOU, Elder Burt! 

Monday, June 12, 2017

Week 48: Nuevos Ríos en la Gracias A Dios

Well, the change has finally come to an end. It's pretty crazy how fast this last change went by. Tonight we receive "the call" telling us who is going and what not. Most likely our companionship will be staying how it is, but after what happened last changes I don't guarantee anything.

Not a whole lot of craziness has gone on this week. We did pick up on a new investigator family which was cool. I always like teaching families more than individuals because I think that the investigators really get the sense of the fact the gospel's greatest blessings are reserved in family units. I also feel like people progress more when they are receiving the missionaries as a family because they feel like they aren't doing the process alone and they have more "ganas" as we would say in Spanish.

Elder Dickson (trainer)and I (multi-zone conference)
Elder Catucuago, (last companion) and I (multi-zone conference

So you know how I said that May is a rainy month here. Well, it hardly rained at all in May and a lot of the poorer people have been going without water for a while because of it. Well, yesterday I believe we received in 2 hours all the rain we were supposed to have in May. My comp and I were in the Gracias A Dios which is the pueblo on the mountain side when the weather decided to let loose. We were about to have a visit with an investigator family when out of nowhere it just started to rain gatos and perros. The bummer is that the roofs are made of the big slates of tin, so when a rainstorm hits you can't hear anything. It rained so much that the roads just turned into rivers and we were pretty much just confined to this house. It was pretty crazy because the current in the street was carrying all these huge rocks because it was so strong. It was pretty crazy. I wish I would've had my camera to film it.

Yesterday we had an investigator come to church for the first time which was cool. He came because of the fellowshipping with a member in the ward who visited him with us. It just goes to show how much faster the work progresses with members at your side. In fact, that same investigator was a reference of a different member. He's one of our most pilas investigators right now. We have to work more on finding through members because the majority of the area is super rich people and businesses. Hahaha! It'll be good though because we just had a multi-zone conference that was focused completely on finding people by faith. Should go well for us.

Well, other than that things are going good. I complete eleven months tomorrow! 🎉

Gracias por todo!
-Elder Dority

Monday, June 5, 2017

Week 47: La famosa de Coca Cola

Baleadas BIGGER than you TORSO!!! -with Elder Alvarado

So this week was a pretty eventful week. We had the opportunity to go on splits with the ZLs which was pretty cool. I went with the gringo ZL Elder Huber. It was super fun and I learned a lot from him. After that we met up with Alvarado and the other ZL to eat at a place called Kiki's. That place is really well known for welling ridiculously huge baleadas. The place in Santa Barbara sells some pretty big baleadas, but these things are like as wide as my torso. It was great. I can now say that I ate all the baleada from Kiki's.

Now say that I ate all the baleada from Kiki's.

We also got the opportunity to leave with President Bush this week and visit some people. It was cool because we were visiting a guy who is a dad and has these super great little kids and the president went with us. My comp and I started talking about the Restoration, but you could tell that the message just wasn't clicking with him so President started talking about eternal families and the guy got way interested and you could feel the spirit. It was super cool.

We also finally have someone with a baptismal date! We were given some wise counsel concerning an investigator who hadn't accepted a baptismal date. We were told we should fast to try and help him out and it for sure worked. We have a date set in July for him. Fasting works! I definitely need to put it in practice more in the mission.

Today we hiked the infamous "Coca Cola." The Coca Cola is the giant sign on the side of the mountain in San Pedro Sula. The view was super cool because we could see all of San Pedro. At the top the only thing they had to drink was coconut water. They take these coconuts and hack off the top with a machete then stick a straw in it and tell you to drink it. It's pretty good and only costs like L15.00 which is like $0.50.

Infamous Coca Cola sign 

Hiking to Coca Cola 

San Pedro Sula view from above

100% Coconut Water

Resting at the top 

My two favorite countries

Other than that everything is going good here. Loving missionary life!
-Elder Dority