Monday, September 29, 2014

Birthday Fun | week 104

A BIG thank you to Erwin and his family for helping us to surprise Tanner for his 21st birthday. I love Erwin & his family, we are so excited to have met him online and look forward to meeting him in person on Skype when Tanner returns home.
Hey Hey!

Thanks for the birthday wishes! Thanks Mom and Dad for coordinating a cake and everything haha! When I asked who had bought it they told me you had sent money. Just want you guys to know how much I love you and no matter how far away I am you always make these days special. I cannot believe that I'm 21 holy moly! How did that happen?

Tell Tyler that I say hi this week! Im excited to see him soon.

I have been doing great. We had another good week. Unfortunately D wasn't baptized this week. She is ready and wants to follow Christ and be baptized. We had a lesson with her and her family. She summoned up all the courage she had to go and talk to her Dad one more time. Unfortunately he still will not give her permission. She was crying and really sad. Then her Father who we have taught and talked with on multiple occasions came down and told us that he will not give permission. Cant lie it was a tough moment. I just felt like crying for the rest of the day. There is always opposition in all things and I know that one day Darlyn will be baptized. She continues coming to church and progressing.

We found an awesome new family this week. The L family. M, A, and N just got married a month ago and are expecting their first child! We found them and began teaching this week. Wow! We felt the spirit strong and we have felt that they have been prepared by the Lord. They even came to church on Sunday! We are going to continue working with them this week.

Well on a side note I ate one of the worst things on my mission this week hahaha. One of the members here gave us tamales and we ate with them. They usually have chicken in them. Well as I was eating I asked hmmmm "what is this" well pigs ear haha. Never going to forget the texture and taste of that hahahah.

Also learned how to make tortillas this week! I have been putting it off all my mission. One of our investigators taught me. Pretty challenging because you have to do it with your hands,  I struggled at first but got the hang of it. We then ate bean soup with fresh tortillas and salt. One of the most humble meals here but so good! There is just something about fresh beans and tortillas here that just doesnt get old! Im going to have to make you guys some typical food from Guatemala.

I'm feeling good! I'm really trying to take in every moment here in the mission. I absolutely love the ward here. I have made some of the best freinds and I love the people. They are so humble and so full of life. We went to watch one of the young men here open his mission call. There house was packed full. H is going to be serving in Brazil! 

We planned a service activity in the zone today! We have been working with the leaders of indexing and family history. The area office let us borrow 10 laptops while we indexed for like four hours! We indexed 2000 names! It was fun and It gets me excited to get into family history after the mission.

I love this work so much! I am excited to see General Conference this coming weekend. This is going to be my 5th General Conference in the mission! I love it! I hope we can all pay attention to ALL the talks and receive personal revealation. I know that the we have a Prophet who leads this church and Christ is at the head. As we follow the Prophet and the teachings of our Church leaders we will be led and guided in all that we do!

Love you guys so much! Have a great week! Thanks again for the birthday wishes!

Elder Hughes

Monday, September 22, 2014

Hola | week 103


Thanks for the Email Dad! I just loved it. Thanks for the birthday wishes. 21.... this week that just looks so old haha. Thanks for the updates too! I want to wish Grandma Barb a very happy birthday! We will have to celebrate a little late in October.

I have heard about that Movie that is going to come out. Should be pretty cool!

Well we had a very standard week! The highlight definetly was N's Baptism on Saturday. Everything went really well. There were no problems and the

Spirit was in abundance. I am so happy for N and I have seen such a change in her. She has through many months and even years before changed her life. She has found the hope and joy the gospel bring to all of us. She even defends the missionaries and the church when her co workers start talking bad and rudely about the Church. I am enjoying every minute!

We have a new ward mission leader which is helping alot. We havent had one for a long time. Things are clicking and we are going to be able to work closer with the members here in Sion which is a blessing.

We had the blessing to have interviews with President Crapo this week. I had a great interveiw which really helped me alot. I have been praying alot lately and President was able to answer my prayers. I know that the Atonement is real and that through Christ a healing and comforting power is found. I thank my Heavenly Father for the people he has sent me throughout my life and my mission that have helped me to progress spiritually.

We have been finding lots of new people to teach. We are going to really be focusing on setting new baptismal dates this week. 

We did divisions with the Assistants this week. I worked with Elder L one of my good freinds here. He wants to go to BYU but is in the same situation I was in. I told him about the Salt Lake Center. He is excited! It has been a blessing to make lots of new freinds here in the mission. Your going to have to meet some of them!

D, a young woman we have been working with for a long time could be baptized this week. She is so close. She wants to be baptized and has been going to all the Young Woman activities at church. We have just had some problems with her Dad who doesnt support her decision. We are praying so that she can be baptized this week.

There are so many other stories and people to talk about. We could write books haha. I just want you all to know how much I love you. I know I say it every week but it is because I really mean it. I have a testimony of this gospel and this work. It is true. It brings true joy and happiness. I hope you have a great week and that you take time to pray and talk with God. He wants to hear from you. 

I love you all! 

Elder Hughes

Monday, September 15, 2014

A rainy Monday in Guatemala | week 102

Hey guys!

Thanks for the email Mom! Yeah I have been reminded alot today that I have a month left haha. All the missionaries in the zone starting singing God be with you til we meet again today haha. I still have time. The weeks are going by so fast I cannot even feel them. Im glad you are all doing good. Riley so pumped that you got a sweet new job. That is so cool your a photographer! Send me some of the pictures that you have been taking id love to see them. Zach your looking good in the maroon and gold. Looks like it was another hot quarry bowl. Those pictures remind me of the first year we played at Rocklin. Im glad the freshman won!

About the travel arrangements still dont have anything. We are going to have interveiws this week with President so I will see what I can find out haha.

We had a good week. I feel like a broken record sometimes haha. It has been raining ALOT. We got soaked playing soccer today with the missionaries. Today is the 15th of September which is independence day here in Guatemala. Its like the fourth of July haha. 

Well some good news. N who we have been teaching for a long time is going to be baptized this Saturday. After quite some time she has finally decided to be baptized. We are so excited for her! We have been praying alot so that she would feel the spirit and make the decision. I know that it was the Lord that has helped her make the decision. We are working so that J, B's sister and D can be baptized on the 27th. Yep all I want for my birthday is two baptisms haha.

I continue to see many blessings in my life and in the lives of the people here in Guatemala. We really felt the spirit guide us this week to the people and members who needed some help. A young woman here passed away this week. She was only twelve years old. We spent some time helping her family. They have been going through lots of trials in the last couple weeks. I was very inspired by the words of Hermana L. She said that "God has helped me all my life through every trial. And is helping me right now. I love him." I love the faith of the wonderful people here. I have seen lots and lots of sadness and trails in the lives of the people. Yet those who are close to our Heavenly Father and embrace the Gospel receive help from on high. I was reading in the Ensign this week and found a quote that I just LOVE from Elder Holland he states,

"Everyone of us has times when we need to know things will get better... My declaration is that is precicely what the Gospel of Jesus Christ offers us, especially in times of need. There is help. There is happiness... dont you quit. You keep walking. You keep trying... It will all be alright in the end. Trust God and beleive in good things to come... Some blessings come soon, some come late, and some dont come until heaven; but for those who embrace the Gospel of Jesus Christ they come." 

Lets keep moving forward in the good times and the tough ones. I have seen how the Lords lifts people and helps them. He has lifted me up and carried me when I couldnt go any further. I love this Gospel and I hope we can all REMEMBER him. Everyday.

Have a great week and know that I love you all so much. Thanks for your support and love. I cant tell you how much I appreciate it. 


Elder Hughes

Monday, September 8, 2014

A week of Blessings | week 101

Hey guys! Dad thanks for the email and the sports updates. Go cougs! haha
Zach great job in your football game. I'm itching to come and watch you
play. Great job with the character award too. Thats the part that really
matters after all. I was thinking about you today. Dont worry if your not
getting all the play time you might want. Christian Daniels one of my
freinds on the team. Didnt get play time freshmen year and he just kept
working at it. By the time he was varsity one of the best players we had. I
always looked up to him. Mom im glad all the fall stuff is out woooohoooo!

Well another week in the books. Time is just flying by. It seems like
everyone here wants to remind me that my mission is coming to a close. It
makes me laugh. I feel great! We had a busy one. Lots of meetings and
things to do. On tuesday we had change conference here in the stake center.
This is always a longer day for us. We have to coordinate alot of things
and get up pretty early to get it done. Almost half the zone had changes
this last week. So lots of movement.

We also had the oppourtunity to have leadership council this week. I always
love this meeting. We have a new vision right now in the mission. We have
recieved some huge promises from the general authorities that have come to
visit. They told us that by the end of the year we should be seeing 20
baptisms every month! So we are working to move toward that!

Some cool experiences this week! We were walking down the street and after
an appointment fell we started talking with a young man named N. He
let us in his house and almost immediately we started talking about
baptism. After reading a little bit from the book of mormon we invited him
to baptism. He said he wants to change and be born again. We returned the
next day and taught him again with his Dad. They were not able to come to
church on Sunday but we are excited to work with them more. I know that God
prepares his children. We found lots of new investigators that are looking

B was baptized on Saturday! There was alot of opposition but
everything went well. Right before the baptism was supposed to start it
just started pouring rain hahahah! We had lots of the young adults
supporting here. When B came up out of the water she took about 10
seconds and cried. It was so COOL! I just wanted to give her a huge hug
hahahah but cant do that haha. B is a great convert she really has
embraced the Gospel and is doing great even though there have been trials
in her life. I am enjoying everyone of these moments.

Another interesting moment this week. We found some new investigators this
week and we began teaching them with some members that live close by. The
father has been the most receptive. As we were teaching the restoration to
the whole family everything was going well. The Mom belongs to another
Church and when we got to the apostacy and the restoration of the gospel
she stood up and walked off... Soon she began to throw stuff on the ground
and yell at her husband. She then refused to even look at us. We finished
the lesson but it got a little hostile in there haha. I felt calm and we
felt bad for the rest of the family. Sometimes the message of the gospel
seems to be a stone of stumling or a rock of offense. Christ was rejected
and mocked and he was the Son of God. While there are lots of people
willing to accept and receive the blessings of the gospel, there is
opposition in all things.

We have a group of people who we are getting ready for baptism this month.
We are working with B's little sister and some more young adults we
have found. I am so happy to be doing the work of the lord.

I read something today that impacted me and I feel like I should share it
with you. President Uchdorf while talking about the trials and things we
face in this life said,

"Often the deep valleys of our present will be understood only by looking
back on them from the mountains of our future experience. Often we cannot
see the lords hand in our lives until long after the trails have passed.
Often the most difficult times of our lives are essential building blocks
that form the foundation of our character and pave the way to future
oppourtunities, understanding, and happiness."

Dad I love that you saw that even though you worked so hard in your job
interveiw that you realize and accept the will of God after all is done.
That is called humility. Like President Uchtdorf says sometimes it is only
from the ¨mountains of our future¨ when we can truly understand why we are
in the valley right now. I have seen how my past experiences and trails
have shaped and prepared me for the future. Our Heavenly Father knows us
and he can see the big picture. His perspective is eternal and we should
work to develop the same perspective. I love you all so much. I love this
work and I am taking in every minute. I have been taking more time to take
in the sights the air and the people of Guatemala.

Love you guys! Have a great week!

Elder Hughes

Monday, September 1, 2014

Boys of Fall | week 100

Whats up guys!

Happy Labor day!
Thanks for the email Mom. I am imagining football getting started up. I love the fall too mom. Here in Guatemala its the "eternal spring" so for all those that like spring time Guatemala is the place.

Zach man Im loving the football pics haha. Sick jerseys too! What position are you playing? any action on the feild?

Mom your pictures looked great of Carters wedding. I remember seeing him on campus at BYU walking around. Tell the Zufelts I say hi too!

Well we had a very standard week here in the mission field  We are really working to try and apply the instruction we received from Elder Alonso in our conferences. It has started to rain alot this last week. The weather here is so funny. There are thunderstorms almost everyday. They just come in and start pouring for like ten minutes and then it clears off.

We had a very "rainy" day this week. We have an investigator named L. She has cancer and we saw a miracle a while back. After we gave her a blessing in 30 minutes she rose from her bed and began to walk. She no longer felt any pain. On friday I wanted to bring my new companion to go and visit her. We headed over and to our suprise she had passed away only a couple hours before. L was a really strong woman who had alot of Faith in Christ. We were able to share a message with her family. I am grateful for the knowledge we have of the plan of salvation. What a blessing!

Some good news! B is doing great. She is just embracing the gospel. We got a call this afternoon from one of her friends telling us that she went to a young adult conference last night and wants to be baptized as "soon as possible". She has a date for the 13th of September but we will see about moving that up closer haha.

I love this ward! We had a correlation with the bishop last night. We set some high goals and we are working hard to accomplish them. We got the change calls last night and I will be spending my last change here in SION! 

I love this work so much. I am so grateful for the oppoutunity that I have to share the gospel. I appreciate the people whos sacrifices make this possible. Above all I thank my Father in Heaven who loves all of his children unconditionally. I have seen and felt the love that God has for all of his children. I love the words of a michael mclean song which describes our responsibility to help rescue our fathers children.

There are refugees among us
They are not from foreign shores
And the battles they've been waging
Are from very private wars
And there are no correspondants
Documenting all their needs
But the refugees among us all 
are yearning for relief

This is a call to arms
To reach out and hold
The evacuees in the dark.

Let us reach out and hold the people who need our help. I pray we can look for the them this week. I love the people of Guatemala. Have a great week and know that I love you all!

Elder Hughes