"Wherefore, ye must press forward with a steadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of hope, and a love of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and endure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eternal life." 2 Nephi 31:20

Monday, May 27, 2013

Sí, todos estaban desnudos.

This week, I'll just shortly share with you what President Castañeda shared with me when he asked me to be a District Leader. To sum it up shortly, he told me that he would be sending me seeds and I had to grow them so that they could go be tree somewhere else. (Of course it sounded cooler in Spanish). The point is, my District is to be a learning one. That was made even more apparent when I got the transfers in this morning. The new Elder and the two sisters to be coming tomorrow, well, if you sum together all 3 the time that they have collectively, it does not add up to mine. Extra sad when you realize that I still don't even have a year in the mission. To give you an idea of why, one of the sister missionaries that is coming just got done training. But, when I say that I mean she finished her training with another sister that was training herself as well. Haha. There are so many sister missionaries coming into the field right now that there are not enough trainers. Keep in mind that for my first six months here we had 8 sister missionaries. So, its a blessing I have Elder Sanchez to help them gain experience quick. It is nice to have sisters though because as a District Leader you have to make phone calls every night and since they are sisters, well I don't call them. There are now sister missionary leaders of some sort. So I pretty much just switched to middie if we were playing lacrosse. I'm just the ball taxi that feeds the numbers to the Zone Leaders. But I also get to plan the District Activities (never had one until the week I became District Leader). We have some plans to go visit some Waterfalls. Should be pretty sweet. 

Anyway, coming into the mission I thought it would be cooler to not be a leader just to be able to focus on your area and nothing else, but President explained that to me in a better way. He explained it using a Bishop (District Leader) and a Stake President (Zone Leaders), but you could really use it for any type of rank that you wanted. He explained what I would be doing and how I needed to help the other missionaries grow. He said that the whole process is about growth. That it was about my growth as well. He said that when I train every missionary to leave my District ready to be a District Leader, I would be ready to become a Zone Leader and so on. 

This point struck me harder when reading in Alma 43:19-21 -- something I had actually already come across. Saying that Moroni had prepared his people (the nephites) whereas only the leaders had been ready and prepared for the lamanites. The rest were all naked. :P See the result in verse 21. Point is, we aren't naked in my district. And don't worry mom, my clothes are clean!

Well, gotta run.

Take care of yourselves.
Elder Andrews

Elder Andrews' District

Monday, May 20, 2013

Everyone changes, but growth is optional.

Looking through my things this week a note from my time at the MTC fell out of one of my books. I didn't write down who said it, where, or when, but it really is some food for thought:

"Everyone changes, but growth is optional."

At best, I said it, but I highly doubt it. Sadly, we have had many lessons in how this short phrase is true. We've been working with Hno. Onésimo and his neighbor for about a month now and they had been progressing towards their baptisms (this coming Thursday). They had done everything we had left them, they had truly received answers to their prayers, they had seen the hand of the Master in this short month. We had halped them as far as we could. They had changed. You could even say that they had changed for the better. But, their intentions were not genuine. When the trial of their faith had come, they had lost. They were accustomed to a Church that gives money. 

For all of you reading this, I hope it is clear that whatever Church you go to, its purpose is not to fulfill your responsibilities to maintain your own home. Surely, the church is a fallback, as the rest of your family. But you cannot go to a church one or two times and genuinely expect to recieve money for your month's expenses. If you go to Church to make your life easier you are being cheated. 

It is certain that this life is meant to enjoy, but you will only be able to see those experiences and appreciate them when you have done what it takes to get it. When you work to strengthen your muscles the tissue tears, it hurts, but it grows. When a seed sprouts, the roots may struggle, but they will grow. As you go through life, you will change. It is certain. In almost every aspect is is certain that with time, you are always changing. But are you growing? Are you putting in the effort? Are you seeing the effects?

If you are not progressing, you are falling behind.

"Everyone changes, but growth is optional."

Onésimo has since not recieved us, his wife yelled at us repeatedly and told us to never come back. Do things with sincere intentions. Strive to grow. I hope never to see any of you in the sad state when you deny everything you know to be true because you are not only willing to change, but you are not willing to grow.

Elder Andrews

P.S. Being District Leader is chill. We watched UP for a District Activity and had breakfast together. Sister Missionaries will be coming next Monday. I love you all. Here is a picture of Elder Cabral and I with our neighbors in front. And the other is of me and Elder Sanchez.

Elder Andrews and Elder Sanchez.
Elder Andrews and Elder Cabral with their front neighbors.

Monday, May 13, 2013

The Day After

Of course everything that you actually might want to know happens the day after the call. You all know that. Yes, it is not the same after the phone call. I felt bad, not for being homesick, but because I felt like I hardly knew any of you and didn't miss you like I felt I should. But it's whatever. 

I really don't even have time to tell you all what has been going on. Long story short, I got called to Villahermosa to have some interviews with the President. A little odd since it was just me and Elder Cabral going to the offices, but not all that odd since the President always has interviews every 3 months at least (and our three months were up). But he usually comes to you and files through all the missionaries in one shot. Long story short, there are some major changes in the mission and he called on me and Elder Cabral.

We have 2 weeks left in the transfer, but there are transfers and not just a few. Elder Cabral is getting sent away. But to where? To Ciudad del Carmen. Barrio (Ward) Universidad. That's right, where I came from. But, that left a whole here with me. So who was coming with me? Well, President Castañeda asked if I was willing to stay here in Mercedes for the next 4 months. I said I would if that is what he wanted.

Well, I don't have much time to really tell the story. But here is what I sent to my mother:

"President called me into the offices today (about 2 hours ago) and told me that I was to be District Leader. I am the youngest in age as well as in time in the mission. President will also be sending me sister missionaries. I've got a lot of things to get myself ready for me because both the assistants have already asked me if I would be willing to train here. And today President told me I should be ready to stay for the next 4 months should I be willing."

Soo, there are a lot of more responsibilites that I get to take on starting now that I wasn't exactly planning for. I have to get everyone here safely and start getting some things together. Elder Cabral leaves early in the morning. 

Check the blog in a few days if you want to see some video of the thunderstorm that woke us up at 2 AM and wouldn't let us sleep. No wonder  the connection yesterday was bad.

Love you all, 
Talk to you more later.

Good [luck] to my journal writing...

Elder Andrews

Monday, May 6, 2013


Whoops, I forgot to write a big email. I was busy talking to my mom. You know, Mother's Day is coming up now... About that actually. For the past month or so I've asked various members when Mother's Day is. Apparently here in Mexico it is every May 10th. Which would be this Friday. But from what I remembered Mother's Day was really on a fixed Sunday... Long story short, I kept asking. And I kept getting the same response. Then I come and get emails talking about Mother's Day on Sunday. Who even knows what day it is. I'm so lost. I feel like I'm reading that book-- Are You My Mother? I always loved that book. 

To keep you a bit informed we are working with Julio more again. He is saving for his mission and for that has been working still and not coming to church for over a month. So, we have been practicing waking him up each day--since his last excuse was that he works at night and can't wake up. We went to pick him up for church yesterday and he wasn't ready! He promised he'd meet us there but then didn't have money for the bus to get there. We saw him again today. It's sad when you see people throwing away their potential. What's worse is when you know that they know it as well. Don't be that person. If you are that person, you can always change. Be like Julio. Cause don't worry, he'll be coming to church next week! I love you mom. Give your mom a hug. Dad, you'll have to wait a month. You have your own fixed day here in Mexico too even! How nice.

Elder Andrews