Monday, September 29, 2014

Week 7

It's been a tough week! We've had a lot of stuff going on that have impeded
us from being able to teach. We've had to do service, people haven't
answered their doors, we have meetings and stuff, yeah. The struggle is
real. We did some pretty awesome weekly planning though and i am confident
that this week will be more than amazing. Three of the kids were baptized
this Sunday! And a 9 year old girl that Elder Cabas and Humphries have been
teaching. Sadly, Delfino was not baptized. He has some things he needs to
work on and he didn't feel ready. We're happy that he didn't feel any
pressure to get baptized, but we're going to continue teaching him. I have
no doubt that he and his mother will be baptized in the near future. Here's
some pics of us eating some weird pho soup.

Elder Eric Najera

Monday, September 22, 2014

Week 6

This week has been miraculous. We've been teaching these four kids from the
ages of 8-13 (We think she's 8. She won't tell us). These kids are from two
different families, but they all live together. Two of the kids' mom,
Sylvia, is a member, though she hasn't been active in years. The other
kids' mother is Maria. Maria is catholic. She had paintings of Jesus on the
cross in her home, her kids wore a cross, all that jazz. However, she
believes in letting her kids make their own choices, so she allowed us to
to teach them. The kids have been taught everything, and they are ready to
be baptized. However, their mothers thought differently. We told them that
we knew that September 28th was the right date for them to be baptized, and
that we had taught them nearly everything we had to teach them. But they
both insisted that the kids were not ready, and that we still needed to
wait a few more months. So Elder Finkenthal asked them to ponder and pray
about a date, and we told them that we would do the same. We agreed to
discuss our dates with one another the following time we met. After much
praying and thinking it over, the three of us came to the conclusion that
the children were ready to be baptized, and that we should not change the
date of the 28th for any reason. We discussed why we felt that it was
right, and how we would present our date to the children's mothers. Two
days after seeing the kids, we went and taught them again. However, since
Elder Baughan is the District Leader, we were on exchanges with the Zone
Leaders on that day. Elder Finkenthal went with one of the Zone Leaders to
proselyte in that area, and Elder Baughan and I were left with Elder
Selfaison. Now Elder Selfaison's a great missionary and all, but he doesn't
speak a bit of Spanish. So, Elder Baughan not speaking Spanish very well
either, the responsibility fell upon me to tell Maria and Sylvia about the
kids' baptism. I went ahead and told them that we had prayed about it, and
still felt that the 28th was perfect. My heart and mind raced at the many
several possible ways that they could take this, but their response left me
speechless. Maria and Sylvia said that they hadn't really thought about it.
But then MARIA said that she had noticed the changes in her kids, and the
progress they had made. And that they were definitely ready for baptism.
Sylvia said that she felt the same way. That she didn't see any reason why
their kids shouldn't be baptized on the 28th. The Lord works miracles. I am
so grateful for this Gospel. So grateful to have been able to teach these
kids. They say the funniest things every time we go over there, and it
makes me so happy to know that they are all potential missionaries. That's
all for now.

Elder Najera

P.s. We have started teaching Maria and her boyfriend Jose. We had the most
powerful restoration lesson with them. They have come to church these past
few times, and love it. Oh, and the kids are Lupita (8), Jorge (10), Alex
(10), and Delfino (13) Jorge took some of these pictures.

Monday, September 15, 2014

Week 5

Dear Everyone,

   We've got so many amazing things taking place here in Denver!!
Yesterday, Elder Lawrence of the Seventy, came and spoke with our mission.
His talk was centered around the importance of obedience, and the blessings
that come along with it. My companions and I are going to really strive to
be exactly obedient from now on so that we may be truly guided by the
Spirit when we find and teach. This Sunday we brought a total of 7
investigators to church!! I was so happy to see them there, and to see that
we are really making a difference in the lives of others. I'm always
thankful that God is helping us. I'm really short on time this week, so
that's all I'll write here. Thank you all for emailing me back!

Love, Elder Najera

P.s. OH!! And I've a departure date! Elder Humphries and I leave for the
Guayaquil West Mission on October 7! It's sad. But exciting. But mostly
sad. Denver is too nice.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Week 4

We have been working hard! I found out a bit more about where exactly we
are. The city is called Lakewood, and the little lake we live next to is
called Sloan's Lake. Whenever we drive by it, people are water skiing, and
swimming, and they think they're having so much fun, but whatever! We have
the Gospel! Elders Finkenthal, Baughan, and I are in the Denver 1st North
area, for the Lakewood Stake. Sunday nights are always loud because our
downstairs neighbors find joy in getting wasted and watching the Broncos
play. Anyway, this week I've been really trying to focus on the area as we
drive in case I'm the designated driver this next transfer. Sadly, only the
designated driver of that transfer is allowed to drive. So Elder Finkenthal
have spent the last 2 weeks fighting over who gets to ride shotgun.
Speaking of driving, Sunday nights here are intense. Every Sunday night,
there are street races going down on a street called Federal. I've yet to
see them, but Elder Baughan and Elder Cabas (He's in my District) tell us
that there are nice cars, motorcycles, and they just hit the pedal to the
metal around 8:30 pm on Sundays. Traffic moves aside to clear the street
for these races. We drove by last night, and there was smoke EVERYWHERE,
and the air smelled of burning rubber. We drove by at 9:00 though, and a
ton of cars were blocking the way, so maybe next week we can see them in
action if we're around that area a little earlier. I tried to convince
Elder Baughan and Elder Cabas to bring our 2014 Corollas into it but they
said nah. Whatever. We went to the Denver Temple on Wednesday! It was
gorgeous. Small, but powerful. We are always working on getting better at
working together as a companionship. To be honest, we've seen some pretty
amazing miracles in just this past week. It all comes down to prayer, and
humbling ourselves by living the gospel of Jesus Christ. I've seen both of
those things get people to give up their smoking addiction, put down the
Corona and go to church on Sundays, and change a work schedule to have
Sundays off and go to church. It's miraculous. I am so blessed to be a part
of this work and help people change & bless their lives. I know I'm in the
right place. My only worry is that two years is going to fly. I need to
work harder. That's all for now.


Elder Najera

Monday, September 1, 2014

Temporary Assignment

I apologize for not writing last week, but I was traveling. My reassignment
arrived two Thursdays ago and it turns out that my temporary assignment
would be in the Denver, Colorado South Mission! I was so not excited. Maybe
a little, but honestly it wasn't where I thought I would be at all.  Anyways, It was super hard to say goodbye to everyone in my district. I had
an amazing 12 days and am amazed by all of the things I was able to learn
while there. I'm going to miss those people.
The plane ride to Colorado was like a short-lived dream. Before I knew it,
I was already getting off the plane in Denver and greeting my Mission
President. We had orientation that whole day (there were about 20 new
missionaries), and we all slept at President Murdoch's house last night.
 It turns out that Elder Humphries is also going to the Guayaquil, West
Mission but will be temporarily serving in Denver for Visa reasons. We will
most likely be here for one transfer (6 weeks) but honestly? I don't want
to leave. I am loving Denver. I fell in love with this city before the
first day was over. The rain has been beautiful, the city is great, and the
people are awesome. There is a lake near our flat (Lake S... something)
It's really pretty. We go there in the mornings to play basketball.
My new companions are Elders Finkenthal, and Baughan. We have so much every
day. Elder Finkenthal's Mexican, so he is almost as fluent in Spanish as I
am. I think the Lord wants me to learn Spanish or something though, because
I keep getting put with all these white Elders.
Teaching has been great. I have been in charge of baptismal invites this
week, and it is scary. Our first day here, all of the new elders had to do
a trust fall, backwards off the stage in the chapel. While falling, there
was that moment of regret and fear, but after being caught, I just got the
best feeling in the world. That's what it's like to ask people to be
I'm doing really well with scripture references. I bring a different one in
every lesson, and to be honest, I didn't even know I knew half of these scriptures.
The Spirit definitely does most of the work in our lessons.
It's great to be out here. I don't want to leave Denver. It feels great to
be praying for a million specific people every day and night, and not have
to worry about myself. It feels great to be able to help people and be able
to answer any concerns of theirs with scriptures.
I'm going to try and write more next week. I love you all. I'll be sure to
not smoke any pot while over here. Peace.

Elder Najera

P.s., There is a temple in my mission, and we go to it every month!!