Our sister, Micaela Cordon, has been called to labor in the Ecuador Quito Mission. She will be learning and teaching the gospel in Spanish. She will report to the Columbia MTC on May 6, 2015. We are so proud of her.
Dear family and friends,
So, it was the first preparation day since Christmas that there wasn’t any sunshine. It’s amazing what kind of difference weather makes on attitude. It is not that am not happy but I’m a little more relaxed when it’s dark and gloomy outside. We are going to take advantage of all the rain though and play some sports out in the mud. This should be a lot of fun!
Fun thing that happened last week was that the day of transfers I knew that my old ward mission leader and his wife would be driving the missionaries from the ward to the transfer building. So I arranged ahead of time for us to meet up and get some lunch while they’re here in town. It was great to see them again and hear about how Deepcreek is doing. It reaffirmed the fact that I really want to go back and visit that Ward shortly after my mission. I definitely have a lot of good friends there.
My mission trainee Elder Barcala got transferred here to Jacksonville, and he is serving in the area next to mine. However, it is across the river and it is not in my zone. I don’t know how often I’ll see him but I am happy that he was finally able to train, something he was really looking forward to doing.
While most of the missionaries in my zone stayed put we did however get a new district leader and new sister training leaders in the zone. In order to get the district leaders up to speed with the vision that Elder Hamilton and I have established we got lunch at chipotle with the district leaders. There’s something really nice about having a meeting outside over lunch. It just really makes things feel official, yet relaxed. I feel like there will be a lot of good things happening here in this in the next couple months.
We have been trying to get our companionship more integrated with the ward. After initiating some game plans we came up with to strengthen our relationship with the bishop and with ward members it feels like things are really starting to change. After having nobody sign up for dinner to feed us the first two months of February we filled our calendar for this week on Sunday. We also lined up several service projects throughout the week for the ward members. Some of the advice that we got from the stake presidents meeting we had on Sunday was to befriend ward members so that they could trust us with their friends.
We had already decided to initiate that idea so it was good to see that as we follow the spirit or vision was aligned with there’s just in time for us to see results the very week they suggested it. I hope that by the time I leave here missionaries will be begging to come to this area knowing the members will help them in all aspects of the work.
I guess one thing I never expected a mission would teach me is that of problem-solving and creativity skills. Truly you cannot just go through the work every day doing the same thing. You will have little success and you won’t be very happy. However, when you do your best to come up with good ideas and good ways to create change things really do improve, a lesson and A skill I hope to apply to everything I do for the rest my life. As Winston Churchill put it “to improve is to change to be perfect is to change often.”
More importantly, I have learned that true change comes from centering our lives on Jesus Christ and making an attempt to be more like Him. Not only is He the perfect example of how we should live, but He is also the way that we change. It was His atoning sacrifice that gives us that ability. What a blessing it is to be able to partake of that blessing each and every day! I Love my Savior Jesus Christ, and I know He loves every single one of us.
How can you change this week to improve your life?
Elder Joshua Cordon
Dear Family and Friends,
All is well here. We just had our transfer call last night and it looks like I have survived this one. In fact, most of the zone is staying put. We are getting another set of sister missionaries, making us the largest sisters zone in the mission. I am not entirely sure with the Lord is trying to teach me with this particular lesson. My companion is staying as well so we will be able to keep doing some good work in this area. We have a lot of awesome people and we are working with some wonderful people who are progressing towards greater things. It would’ve been heartbreaking to have to leave all this when there is so much that is about to happen.
Lily finally committed to a date, she will be baptized on March 30. The only reason that she hasn’t been baptized yet is because we have been waiting to find out when her grandma who lives in Mexico will be able to come. She was going to try for this past weekend but her grandma’s flight got delayed and then eventually canceled the next best time is the end of March. She is ready and has been for a long time. I feel like when we teach her that we are teaching a recent convert. It is amazing to see the transformation that she has gone through even since I’ve been here let alone the one that she’s gone through since elder Hamilton has been here.
We have been teaching this man Kevin since mid-December on a weekly basis, and just this past week he started bringing his wife to lessons with us. She has really liked it at this point it is funny to hear him tell us “eventually we will get her.” It is almost like we are having a member present lesson. One of the few things that is stopping Kevin from being baptized at this point is that he works every Sunday. Our lesson with him tomorrow will be about the Sabbath day and knowing him I am sure that he will try to make the necessary changes to be at church on Sunday. It has been a great experience teaching him. Because of extenuating circumstances we had started originally teaching him in the parking lot now that has moved to the church. Little by little they all know the truth eventually.
Among other amazing families that we are teaching There are the Conseillants, Bro. Colney, Bro. Gonzalez, Osmond and Viosa (the Albanian couple) and this young guy Mackenly and we started teaching yesterday. The Lord has been so very good to us and we are doing our best to be worthy of our hire and be good stewards with what we have been given. I have been so blessed to be able to develop so many wonderful friendships with a host of wonderful goodhearted people. To be surrounded by such incredible spirits really brightens my entire view of the whole world. That is a blessing I have learned as a missionary. While one could watch the news and see only negative in the world if they would only get out and knock a few doors and just see how many nice people there are out there you could really change your view entirely.
You don’t know your neighbors get to know them they could become some wonderful friends! Have a wonderful week.
And Happy Birthday Mom!
Elder Joshua Cordon