Wednesday, August 28, 2013

week 47 | running around!

Enjoying the Rain? Wondering if he wishes he had a bright yellow rain poncho?

Hey guys!

I love mondays too Mom! Im glad to hear you guys are right back into the routine of things now with school getting started. I was laughing just because Mom you have said the same thing about routine every year when we went back to school. And your right if you want to see a two year routine just go on a mission. Thats why I think it goes by so fast too! Riley I'm pumped to hear you got into Brother Sterri`s class. Looking back now from the mission to my seminary years is fun! Really get into the scriptures everyday this year trust me it will pay off one day when your on the mission I promise. Mom I love the pics they look AWESOME! Pictures are such a cool thing. Your going to have to teach me a little bit when I go back so I can learn how to take good pictures hahah. Wow Dad I didnt know you were traveling to Utah more thats awesome! That means in the future we will be able to meet up when I'm out there studying again. I loved being able to see my grandparents every week when I went up for school. '

Well this week was a little crazy hahahah! We had a wild one. It seemed like Tuesday was the only normal day that we had hahah. Thursday Elder S one of the assistants came to our area to work with us which was fun. Elder S is a great missionary who has no fear whatsoever to share the gospel. It was really inspiring to me. We contacted everyone we could find in the street. Alot of people really dont like talking to us but we were able to set up a couple return appointments. Elder M and I have been struggling a little bit. Sometimes we just have no Idea how to work effectively in Acatan. Together we almost have three years of experience in the mission and it has been a stuggle lately. I have been humbled these last two weeks here in Acatan. It is really interesting to me how the Lord has helped me do that in my life. I remember the two surgeries I had in 2011. Both were very humbling experiences for me that taught me alot. This area has been my next test. I am grateful for the trails and tests the lord sends our ways. He keeps me humbe and on my knees and thats what I need sometimes haha.

spending the weekend in the hospital
Well I have to tell you guys about Saturday hahah. Elder M and I had a meeting in the stake center Saturday morning as we were returning we got a call from the one of our district leaders who had a district service project in the area of the sisters. He told us his companion got hurt and that we needed to head over there. When we arrived they told us that unexpectedly a big branch broke off and hit elder R in the head and neck and that he was knocked uncontious for about five seconds. I went in and looked at him he was in a bunch of pain and looked super pale, so long story short after talking with the mission nurse and President Watts I was on my way to the hospital with elder R. I had a member give us a ride. They rushed him into the emergency room and after taking tests and doing some scans they told us that he fractured his vertabrae they said it was the C5. But the good part is they told him he was going to be fine he would just have to wear a neck brace for six weeks. They decided to keep him there in the hospital until the next day. Through all of this I was talking with President Watts keeping him informed and everything. They got Elder R on some pain meds and into a room. It was pretty funny because we didnt have anything to do all day so we just talked and waited. President and Hermana Watts came in the Afternoon to see him and brought us some snacks which was nice. The hospital was full and they usually dont have people who stay the night with the patients so I was on the floor hahahahah Its been a long time since I have slept on the floor before. They gave me a couple pillows and a blanket so made a makeshift little bed in the corner. I was laughing because there was an unused bed right next to where I was sleeping but they told me I couldnt use it because the hospital was full. So I spent most of the weeked there with Elder R. Poor guy I felt pretty bad for him. Has about three months in the mission and now has a nice big neck brace to wear for a while. We were super glad it wasnt worse though. He could have easily done something alot worse. It felt super weird not to go to church on sunday. Kind of a crazy weekend.

Whew! Well im doing well. We have leadership meeting tomorrow with President Watts. I really need a boost. I sure do love this work. I have had alot of quiet moments this week to think and ponder on my mission. What a rollercoaster. I wish I could express myself better. I left out about a million other experiences I have had this last week. I went back to a favorite talk of mine this week. "Of regrets and resolutions" by President Uchtdorf. If you havent read it I reccomend that you do. I love his closing thoughts. that we "Do not wait until we are ready to die before we truly learn to live" Life is so awesome! Everyday I wake up wondering what can the Lord teach me today. We can find and see miracles in everyone of our daily lives. Even the hard times in life and on the mission can be a blessing if we let it be. I love this gospel and my Savior Jesus Christ. He can be our immovable foundation if we build our lives upon his teachings and his true church. I love you all so much. Mom, Dad, Riley, Zach and everyone that reads this I love you all. Thanks for all of your love and support in my life. Have a great week! Dont forget the basics of the Gospel. read your scriptures, say your prayers and help other people. I think we should all go to primary once a month to refresh ourselves hahahah.

Love you guys

Elder Hughes

Monday, August 19, 2013

week 46 | starting a new change!

Hey Guys!

Well thanks Mom for the update! Im glad all is well there in Rocklin thats what I like to hear. Good luck Riley and Zach with school getting started again for you guys. I cannot beleive that Riley your a Junior. I honestly feel like I was just starting my Junior year too! I loved the pics of the Rafting trip with all your buddies. Dang you guys look so old hahahaha.

Your right mom i'm coming up on a year in the mission. When this change ends im going to hit my year mark. Im still freaking out about that. I feel like I just left. And they just tell me the second year goes by even quicker. Mom, I love you. I thought it was interesting you mentioned that your mom sense has been going lately. There definetly is a connection between Motherers and their missionaries that I know. Your awesome Mom. I felt your prayers this week. It was a tough one for me.

Some highlights this week. My package got here wooooooo! I looked on the box and It took about six weeks to get here hahahah. Thanks for everything. I have put my dry bag to use this week as well as my oil container. My favorite part definetly was the pictures. I hadnt seen pictures of most of those freinds or family for my whole mission. I put them all in a photo album for my desk. Seeing all of those just made me so grateful for all the many freinds and family in my life. Being on the mission really puts things into perspective for me. My suit arrived too! I love it. It fits me super well... almost too well hahaha I cannot gain wait hahahah. I got the Guatemala flag put on the inside too!

This last week was a tough one. Honestly one of the hardest weeks I have had on my mission. There were a few reasons for that hahah. Our area is so different. With alot of gated communities and busy member families we spent most of the week walking. Most of the days this last week we would get over to our area and try and find someone a member or investigator who was actually home. Yet we always seemed to find something or have a really cool lesson every night around seven hahaha. I had a cool experience on friday. Friday afternoon after getting back late from a planning meeting with the zone and finding no one in the house Elder M and I felt really down. Discouragement is how Satan works against us sometimes. At about five o clock we found ourselves by the house. We both felt like we needed to go back to the apartment and pray. We prayed and read the scriptures for about an hour. We then had a little companionship study for about twenty minutes. We left the house and felt about a thousand times better hahaha! Somtimes in life when we get discouraged and really down we need to stop and first Pray. Second we need to read the scriptures! Prayer is a powerful tool. This last week brought me to my knees and its amazing to feel how the Savior can just pull you back up again. We were pretty excited just to end the week and start a new one hahah.

Unfortunately Neither M or the N family made it to church on Sunday. We are doing everything we can to keep them moving in the right direction. Elder M and I are staying here together for another change. Im pretty excited about that. We work well together which always makes things nice. I am going to set some new personal goals this week and for this next change. I have so many things that I have to improve on personally and as a Leader.

Ahhh I dont have any time left. Im so grateful for my oppourtunity to serve here in Guatemala. Life and the mission is meant to be difficult. Thats what helps us to grow and change. Every hard thing, temptation, struggle. and difficulty we face in this life gives us another chance to apply the teachings of Jesus Christ, use his atonement and change. I know that this message is true. I love the quote by President Hinkleys I dont have it in front of me but It goes something like this ¨In life we have to options we can laugh or we can cry and I prefer to laugh, crying just gives me a headache¨ I prefer to laugh too! 

I love you guys so much! Thanks for all of your love and support. I feel your prayers everyday. Have a great week guys!


Elder Hughes

My New Suit! Thanks Mom & Dad!

Custom tailored in Guatemala, with the flag sewn in the lining. Awesome!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Hola mi familia | week 45

Hey Guys!

Its so nice to hear from you guys today! Thanks for writing me and inspiring me every week. I have the coolest family ever! Still going strong with all the summer fun haha. You guys are awesome. Im sad the Giants arent doing so hot this year but thats ok. We will let someone else win the World Series for a change haha. Got to let them win everyone once in a while. Im glad your enjoying the golf game a little bit Dad. That is something I want to enjoy doing for the rest of my life. Im just imagining you guys winding down and getting ready for school to start again. After this much time in Guatemala alot of the stuff and seasons there have become a blur to me haha.

Well I dont have a ton of news to share today. Sometimes the weeks seem to be a big blur to me. We had another productive week in our area which is nice. I feel like we are just now climing out of the hole that we were in before. Sometimes it takes a good change in an area to get things back on track. Thats the crazy part is we are starting the last week of this change which just blows my mind. Things are moving faster and faster now.

Some highlights this week! The N family came to church on Sunday which was super exciting. We had a great lesson with them Saturday night and they were really exciting to come on Sunday. Elder M and I were just sooooo happy on Friday night when we got home. C and M are such great people. We are really excited to teach them more this week about the plan of salvation.

We had some difficulties with M this week. After a great Family home evening on Monday of last week we could never get another visit in. We set days and times and she just was never there. We are going to really focus on her this week and get her progressing again. Its unreal how much satan works against these people.

To be completely honest we have been having some challenges in the zone. As Zone leaders we have been dealing with some problems.  I love these missionaries so much. I worry and pray for them daily. It is really important that we as members and missionaries stand up for what is right. Our loyalty and obedience is always to the lord first. In this world of shifting values and customs we have to be the people who do the right thing and take the road less traveled. The same applies to all the missionaries in all the world. We are representatives of our families, this church, and Jesus Christ. The amazing this is that we can always change. We can always come unto the Savior and repent.

I had the chance to go on a much needed division this week to see if I could help an Elder with his struggling companionship. I love these oppourtunities to learn from other missionaries. It is amazing to see how much we can learn about ourselves everyday. 

Dad thanks for your letter this week. Just want you to know that you are my hero. I have come to really understand the sacrifice that you make for our family while I have been out here on the mission. You work so hard for us and I am so grateful for that. I cant really express how much I love you. Thank you Thank you Thank you! Mom you give him a big hug from me hahahaha And a kiss if you want hahahah.

I know this work is true. What a priviledge I have to share this message with others. Quote of the week comes from Spencer W Kimball "The treasure house of happiness is unlocked to those who live the Gospel of Jesus Christ in its purity and simplicity" Who wants to be happy? And not just momemtarily that way but to feel a deep and abiding peace and happiness in their hearts and lives? Well I can tell you there is only one answer to that question. Live the Gospel in its simplicity as President Kimball says. If we make repentance, scripture study, prayer, church attendance, and service for our families and neighbors part of our daily lives and we truly live these principles true happiness is found. I know we have a Father in Heaven who knows and loves us. As we trust in him he will bless us. Ok are we gonna live these principles so that we can be happy? I need to! I have to!

Have a great week! I love you all so much.



Hey my suit comes tomorrow yaya!

Package still hasnt come yet..... Kinda lame huh But for my birthday I need a new watch. Mine broke a couple weeks ago

And sorry but there are no pics today. Something happend to my sd card. It just stopped working all together. So I have to get it sent in so they can retrive all my pictures lame haha But Im going to buy a new sd card and take some pics this week for you guys.

Love you all so much. 

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Hello on a Tuesday! | week 44

after getting completely soaked in the rain!

Hey guys! Feels really weird to be writing on Tuesday hahaha. I love you guys. Glad to hear that everyone got home safe and sound. One half of the family trips always goes just as planned. I cannot believe that summer for your guys is starting to come to a close. I feel like it just started.

Well I feel like I have alot to tell you guys. I think probably the most frustrating things for me is that I cannot fully convey the experieces I have here in the mission. My poor writing skills just put it all to shame. Last week was just crazy for Elder M and I. We started things off with Mission Leadership meeting on Tuesday which was amazing as usual. President Watts taught us for about two hours. We talked alot about purification and how this process works. The Lord is hastening his work and this means that he demands more from all of his servants. We got home at about three o'clock on Tuesday and immediately left to work. As we were crossing the "barranco" The heavens opened and we got completely drenched hahahah. Of course we were not prepared at all. We had an amazing lesson with M who continues to progress little bit by little bit. As we were walking to our last appointment a car stopped and asked if we wanted a ride of course in the rain we acceped. We met M and C N. In just one minute we contacted them and left them with one of our little cards we made. As we were getting out I hurried and asked them for their adress to see if we could stop by their house some day. Later last week we stopped and visited with them. Oh wow! Such an amazing family. They were recently married eight months ago. Both M and C are super open to our message. Such great people who are searching for the truth. We really feel like the Lord has led them strait to us. We hope to see them at church with us on Sunday too!

Wednesday we had a stake missionary correlation with us,  President Watts and the stake presidency. It was really fun to work with all the stake leaders and president Watts. Thursday we went on divisions with one of our district leaders. Elder S came to Acatan with me. I loved it I was able to get to know him better. We have had seen some struggles in his area and district but are hoping we can help them. 

We finished the week with new investigators and a happy Elder Hughes! Elder M told me that we had one of the best weeks in Acatan that he has seen in about four months. Even though we were running around like crazy people going to meetings and doing about a hundred other things I loved it.

We had a great temple trip today. I hadnt been to the temple in about eight months. Today our session was in spanish which was really cool. It was the first time that I have that oppourtunity. I am so grateful for the temple. What a blessing it is to have temples of the Lord so close to all of us. The veil is thin in the house of the Lord.

Well I just want you guys to know I love you! We are pretty busy here. Sometimes it can be a bit overwhelming with the zone and our own area but I have really learned how to manage everything. It is amazing how much the Lord helps me. We are seeing so many little miracles in our area. I cannot tell you how many times we have had all of our appointments fall and pass by investigators or people in the street at the precise moment. 

The Lord hears and answers prayers. He answers mine and he will answer yours. I hope you all have a great week. Remember that we control that. This Church blesses lives. It has completely changed mine forever. I love you Mom and Dad so much. I hope you know that! Riley and Zach I think about you guys all the time. Please stop growing hahahah Your both about bigger than me now. Love you guys.

"What-er thou art, act well thy part"

Much love,

Elder Hughes

for our Rocklin friends, can you spy Elder Shaun Gondola in this picture (look to the right of Tanner) They are now in the same mission and should even come home on the same day!