Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas follow-up...

Mi querido familia. (my dear family)
Just talked to you all yesterday. I love you all!

Mi mensaje del Presidente esta semana, "El tiempo de crecer ha llegado e irá a Cuichapa a servir con todo su corazón y aplicará lo que hasta ahora ha aprendido, le amo"
(My message to the President this week, 'The time to grow has come and he will go to Cuichapa projects to serve with all your heart and apply what until now has been learned, loved him" )

El mensaje general del Presidente:
Algunos podrán pensar: ¿Hay un futuro para mí? ¿Será segura mi vida? ¿Puedo confiar en el Señor y en el futuro? ¿O sería mejor mirar atrás, volver atrás y vivir en el pasado? A los de toda generación que se hagan esas preguntas, les digo: "Recuerden a la esposa de Lot". La fe es para el futuro. La fe pone los cimientos en el pasado pero nunca anhela quedarse allá. La fe confía en que Dios tiene grandes cosas reservadas para cada uno de nosotros y en que Cristo es en verdad el "sumo sacerdote de los bienes venideros" (Hebreos 9:11).
Mantengan los ojos puestos en sus sueños, por muy distantes y fuera de su alcance que parezcan. Vivan para ver los milagros del arrepentimiento y del perdón, de la confianza y del amor divino que transformarán su vida hoy, mañana y para siempre. Esa es la resolución de Año Nuevo que les ruego que guarden.

(The President's message:
may think: is there a future for me? Will my life be secure? I trust in the Lord and in the future? Or would be better to look back, go back and live in the past? To those of any generation that made these questions, I say: 'Remember Lot's wife'. Faith is for the future. Faith puts the foundations in the past but never longs for staying there. Faith is confident that God has great things reserved for each of us and that Christ is indeed the 'high priest of future assets' (Hebrews 9: 11).
eyes in his dreams, very distant and outside its scope that appear. Live to see the miracles of repentance and the forgiveness of the confidence of divine love that will transform your life today, tomorrow and forever. That is the resolution of new year that I would ask that they keep.)

Les amo (I love you all), Elder Knight

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Querido familia,
This week has been super great! I'm always learning alot here, I love it. Especially here in Carmen! Our branch is super great. And I love everyone here so much. The only sad thing is that I'm probably going to leave this next week. Which is a super bummer, especially since I feel like we have so much success here! Although I know that success in the mission does not depend on where you are, but in who you are. Elder Ibarra and I had a good week, Yamilet and Mari got baptized! Yamilet's family is almost complete baptismwise. Every member in their family is amazing, and so destined to follow the Lord. But its a matter of time with every one. Yair was baptized 2 weeks ago, Yamilet this last week, and Joaquina (their mom) plans on getting baptized this week. Speaking of which, she had to make such a big sacrifice to be baptized.
Last night, Elder Ibarra and I were on the way to Carlos and Rosa´s home, to share a message of marriage with them because they have a few problems in their relationship. On the way, we decided to stop by Joaquina's because she has a dvd player with a control(so we can select spanish on bilingual dvds), so that we could watch Together Forever with Carlos and Rosa. Upon arriving at her home, she opened the door with tears in her eyes, and a más o menos smile. She invited us in, and explained to us what happened. All I can say is that it was a big sacrifice she had to make before getting baptized. But after she had prayed and received confirmation from God that this is the true church of Jesus Christ on the earth, she knew that she had to do whatever it takes to be baptized and join her family. So we talked with her alot about the Atonement, and how we are never alone. How no matter what we do, the Lord is always willing to pull us out of trouble and help us to get back on his road. And no matter what it takes to get there, will be worth it because this road leads to eternal life. Eternal happiness in which we will like with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ once again, and we will be together with our families in God's kingdom forever. We then gave her a priesthood blessing and she told us she felt so tranquil and peaceful. I know that the priesthood is the power and authority of God here on the earth with the only purpose of blessing us when respected properly. I am so happy to be here, there really is on other place I would rather be than on this mission of the Lord.
I love you all so much, and look forward to speaking with you on Christmas! Never forget to remember not to forget to remember Jesus Christ in this season. And never forget the true meaning of everything we do in these days. Jesus Christ, whose birth we celebrate in this season, sacrificed his life to give us the greatest gift in the history of the world: Eternal Life. What will we give him as a sacrfice this Christmas? Jesus Christ himself said "And ye shall offer for a sacrifice unto me a broken heart and a contrite spirit." It is my prayer that we can all do so, and I share with you my love and testimony that He is the Christ, and He lives. That He will bless us as we come unto Him and prove our faith in Him and His word. In His holy name, even Jesus Christ, Amen.
Love, Elder Knight
P.s. Dad, I'm still on letter #2! I was going to share the story with Carlos last night, who has been postponing his baptism for almost 2 years. But it was when we ended up visiting Joaquina and giving her a priesthood blessing. I shared the story with her, because it touched on sacrifice and how much our Heavenly Father loves us. ..but she's not a tough investigator at all, she was prepared well before we found her.. I know its not 100% complete, but you're the judge, what say ye? =] ....Remember I love you!
P.s.s. Thank you so much, my long lost sister, for writing me! I absolutely LOVED hearing your experiences in the temple. I know they are really the house of the Lord. Speaking of which, I gave a talk yesterday (after the President notified me on saturday haha), and I chose to speak on temples. I know it just had to be inspired, because I didn't even think of it until Sunday morning, and felt so right. All of the members loved it. I shared the story of the Hawaii temple during the attack on Pearl Harbor, and I saw a few tears in the chapel. I love the temples, and cannot wait until I can enter again! Its so lame, because I thought on my mission I could go a lot to the temple, but still have yet to even see it... Well, patience is a virtue. I love you!
P.s.s.s. I love all you, my other sisters as well. And mom, who by the way is the best mom in the world. Never forget it. There is no question or doubt  that we have the best parents in the world. And that Heavenly Father must love us just a little bit more than all of His other children, because our parents are proof of this love. Haha, I love you all! ¡Feliz Navidad!

Monday, December 12, 2011

December 12, 2011 letter home...

Mi familia,

This week has been very special, we had the baptism of Chema (Jose Manuel) this week! His dad finally returned from seas, and even came with us to his baptismal service. Also his older sister came, and they both loved it. We, the missionaries also had a musical concert this week along with Pres. Naun (our branch president) and 40 of his music students playing recorders. It was all based on Christmas, and us (the missionaries) all shared spiriutal thoughts in between every song. I spoke of the families, and the love I have felt with my family, especially in Christmas times, and how I wish that every family could feel this love and happiness that I know only comes from the eternal bond we have as a family sealed together in the temple for time and eternity. It was a great concert, especially since all of the students' parents came who weren't members of the church. And we got a lot of references from the concert too. Only that we sang 2 songs in english (Jingle Bells and Jingle Bell Rock) (totally not Christ related, but the students loved to play it haha) in which the missionaries asked that the american elders sing as loud as they can. I just about lost my voice haha, also because we sang 14 songs, some repeating themselves. So I have been talking really low-voiced the past couple of days, but my voice is already coming back haha.

This week, we are planning that Mari and Jamilet both get baptized, as they have been waiting very long. Mari has wanted to, but we haven't been able to find the time to teach her as she works alot. And Jamilet has felt unready until now, because of a truly misfortunate past that she has gone through. But we have talked with her and resolved all of her doubts, as well as helped her through the repentance process. Her mother is also planning on getting baptized, but on the 23rd. Because she also has something she has to let go before she gets baptized. It seems that no matter what the problem or roadblock in the way of this family, they just keep pushing through everything. They are so faithful and have all the desires to follow Christ. I am truly grateful for the opportunity my Heavenly Father has given me to meet and know all of these lovely children of His. I will never be able to repay Him, but will do the very best I can to make Him proud. I know that the restored gospel is true, that Joseph Smith was a prophet called of God. I know that the Book of Mormon contains the fulness of the gospel of Jesus Christ, and without its precious contents and principles we would be lost in these days. I am so grateful to be a missionary. These truly are the best two years of my life.
Love, Elder Knight
P.s. Not sure if you got the email I forwarded from Pres. Castañeda, but he gave us permission to talk with our families via Skype this Christmas! =] Wahoooooo!! Get ready Knight Family!
P.s.s. What did you do with the Christmas invitations this year? I am a bit curious to know
P.s.s.s. You are always in my prayers. I hope you are all doing great, and that you don't let a day pass without recognizing a miracle/blessing in your lives. Love you!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Greetings from Mexico and Happy Thanksgiving!

Mi querido familia,
I do not have much time, as I got way over excited writing to the Presidente this week. But I'll post what I wrote to him, and try to touch on the other stuff tht happened this week for you.

Here is the letter to President, I'm sure Dad can translate it for everyone. ...because we really don't have much time. Thanks!

Querido Presidente,
Una semana excelente que hemos tenido aquí en la rama Universidad. Todo está bien, tenemos un consejo de rama lo cual es excelente. El Presidente Luis Naun Arias es un hombre fuerte. Tenemos muchas dificultades con algunos conversos recientes en nuestra rama, y está arreglando todo en una manera muy buena y guida por el Espíritu. Estoy agradecido a tener un líder ejemplar como él, siempre está dispuesto ayudarnos aún si tiene sus propias precupaciones. Siento que usted debe escribirle una carta o llamarle un día si tiene el tiempo, algo de agradecimiento porque en verdad es un hombre excelente y tiene muchas ganas a trabajar.

(Dear President, 
An excellent week we have had here at the University branch. All is well, we have a branch Council which is excellent. President Luis being Arias is a strong man. We have many problems with some recent converts in our branch, and he is arranging everything in a very good way and is guided by the spirit. I am grateful to have an exemplary leader like him, he is always willing to help even if you have your own worries. I feel that you must write a letter or call it a day if you have the time, something of appreciation because he really is an excellent man and is eager to work.)

El hermano Guillermo llegó de Merida ayer, y vamos a ver si puede ser entrevistado mañana cuando usted viene para la capacitación. Tenemos la mamá, dos hermanas, y cuiñado de Yair(se bautizó en sábado)quien todos están preparando a ser bautizados muy pronto. Ellos nos dan muchísimo animo cada vez que les vemos. Tienen problemas, pero están dispuestos a dejar todo para seguir a Jesucristo. El Señor realmente ha enviado el Espíritu Santo para testificar a ellos de la veracidad del mensaje. También, hay la prima/nieta de dos otros conversos recientes quien se va a bautizar esta semana. Toda su familia ha cambiado mucho porel Evangelio, y quieren compartirlo con sus familiares en los Estados Unidos, nos van a pasar sus direcciónes para que los misioneros pueden visitarles allá.

(Brother Guillermo arrived from Merida yesterday, and we are going to see if you can he can be interviewed tomorrow when you come for training. We have a mother, two sisters, and nephew of his (was baptized in saturday)who all are preparing to be baptized soon. They give us much encouragement every time we see them. They have problems, but are willing to leave everything to follow Jesus Christ.  The Lord has truly sent the Holy Spirit to testify to the veracity of the message. There are also a niece and granddaughter of two other recent converts who we will baptize this week. His family has changed much for the Gospel, and they want to share it with relatives in the United States, we will pass your address so that missionaries can visit them there.)

Ayer, vimos un milagro que todavía me da asombra. Elder Ibarra y yo pensabamos que el ensayo ayer iba a durar hasta las 7 en la noche, y después ibamos a ver la devocional en el distrito. Pero terminamos el ensayo temprano proque Presidente Naun tuvo que ir a un reunión. Entonces todos salimos a visitar investigadores. Elder Ibarra y yo fuimos sin saber adonde ibamos, hasta que en el combi discursamos un rato, y decidimos a visitar unos antiguos investigadores. Entonces fuimos a visitarles, se llaman Leydi y Roberto, pero solo encontramos a Leydi y su hija de 12 años, Diana. Pero Leydi necesitaba nuestra ayuda, y consolamos a ella con las promesas que la iglesia y el Evangelio de Jesucristo son las respuestas para todos las problemas en su familia, su salud, y su matrimonio. En fin, yo sé que el Señor nos utiliza a hacer Su voluntad, porque el Espíritu nos guió a su casa de ellos. Después les dejamos a esperar Roberto a llegar de su trabajo. Y casi en el fin de la devocional, todos llegaron para verla y disfrutar de las palabras del profeta viviente y escuchar del himno "Noche de Luz." Sé que el Señor bendicirá a su familia mientras se acercan a él por medio de la oración, estudio de las escrituras, y obediencia a sus mandamientos.  Milagros pasan, cada día. Pero tenemos que buscarlos, y estar dispuestos actuar con los susurros del Espíritu cuando nos dirige a ellos. 

(Yesterday, we saw a miracle that I'm still amazed. Elder Ibarra and I thought the trial yesterday was going to last until 7 in the evening, and then we went to see the devotional in the district. But finished the trial early but President Naun had to go to a meeting. Then everyone went to visiting investigatorsElder Ibarra and I went without knowing where we were, in the outskirts of town a while we taught discussions, and decided to visit older investigators. Then we went to visit them, who are called Leydi and Roberto, but we only find Leydi and his 12-year-old daughter, Diana. Leydi needed our help but we consoled her with promises that the Church and the Gospel of Jesus Christ are the answers to all problems in your family, your health, and his marriage. Anyway, I know that the Lord was used to do his will, because the spirit we guided them home.  We left them to wait for Roberto to arrive from work. And almost at the end of the devotional, everyone came to see her and enjoy the words of the living Prophet and listen to the anthem 'Light night'. I know that Mr Bendicirá's family saw the light and felt the Spirit while approaching it by means of prayer, study of the Scriptures, and obedience to his commandments.  Miracles happen every day. But we have to find them, and be willing to act with the whispers of the spirit directs us to them.)

Gracias Presidente, le amamos. Y estoy agradecido tener los líderes que tengo aquí en mi mision. Apriendo cada día, y siento la veracidad del Evangelio mucho más a estar aquí. Espero que todo está bien en las oficinas, y con su familia. Siempre están en nuestras oraciones. Cuídese mucho, Presidente. Le necesitamos.

(Thank you, President, we love you. I am grateful to the leaders that i have here in my mission. I am thankful each day, and i feel the power of the Gospel much more everyday that I am here. I hope that all is well in the offices and with your family. They are always in our prayers. Take care President. We need you.)

Con amor (with love), Elder Knight

(Trevor and his companion opening up his two Thanksgiving packages from home)

Also, he wrote me back from last week. And Haley, I have permission to receive a call from you while you open your mission call, but (only) for 30 minutes(Wooo!!). So I'll pass the number onto you in another email. I'm so excited for you!! Presidente also congratulates all of the Knight family, I honestly can't remember why. But you are all congratulated. ¡Felicidades familia Knight!
As for things in our area, everything is going super great. We are seeing so many miracles. If there is one thing I have learned here in Carmen, its to teach people not lessons. We always study it, but I don't think I ever really understood this principle until now. I have always tried to make sure we teach doctrine that our investigadores will need to progress until baptism. But as of recently, I have found that what we teach does not always have to come from one of the missionary lessons. I don't know why I never understood this completely. But we have really been focusing on teaching what our investigadores need here, and I love it. We become so much closer to the people here, and they really see us as respresentatives of Jesus Christ. They look to us for advice, and trust us with their doubts and questions. They don't just let us into their houses expecting to be lectured, but wait at the door to receive heavenly guidance from God's servants. I know that when we really, I mean REALLY love the people we teach, the Spirit teaches and the people are blessed immensely. I pray every day that I can teach by the Spirit, so that His children can be taught what they really need, and that they can be motivated to obey the commandments of God. Obedience is key to receiving blessings. "I, the Lord, am bound when you do what I say. But when you do not obey, YOU HAVE NO PROMISE. ....Its like ordering a pizza, where you have to send the money before its delivered to you. Our obedience is the money. We do not receive the pizza until we have been obedient... Be obedient and eat pizza.
Also, we got your packages last week! Thank you so much! I ate oatmeal for breakfast today. It was sooo good. Reminded me of Philmont and all my brothers, when we were trading oatmeal for trail mix. And the ties are all great! Thank you so much! I love you all so much. We are going to look for a small family to share our thansgiving dinner with haha. It was the greatest package I have ever received in my life. Thank you so much <3
Well, I love you all so much. May God bless you all, and guide you in every step you take. Look for His hand in every work. I know that everything happens for a reason, look for the purpose in every thing that happens to you.
I love you all, but wouldn't like to be anywhere else but here.
Elder Knight
P.s. To Dad: I'm game. Thank you =) You are amazing (I sent him a little series of letter with challenges to complete-mostly for fun and some adventure)
Also, included are pictures of our baptisms, a few of the young men who work in a mechanic shop of a member. And us opening the packages last night. Love you!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

November 28, 2011

Querido familia,

This week has been great! The Lord truly does pave the way for us missionaries. And when we choose to walk in His road (Obey his commandments, rules, and ways of doing the work) He truly does bless us. We as missionaries here in our mission, have a goal to baptize every week. Every week we should be changing somebody's life through inviting them to following the example of Christ through Baptism.

This week we were waiting for Guillermo to return from Merida, where he has medical appointments, and he still hadn´t returned. We had a date for the next week for Chimi, a mom who has been an 'almost' member of the church for more than 2 years here. Her son was the only one who could get baptized when the missionaries first visited them 2 years ago. But she hasn't been able to get baptized because her husband would not get married with her (so she hasn't been living the law of chastity, so she couldn't get baptized). Well, turns out 3 weeks ago she kicked him out of the house for some word of wisdom problems. So we put a date for her baptism the 3rd of December. Well turns out on friday she came to the missionary farewell of Alexis, and upon talking with her and one of our ward missionaries, we all decided to push her baptism to this Sunday after church. So we had her interviewed the next day, and baptized on Sunday. It happened fast, but was all so beautiful. So many people already know her, and were so happy for her. She also was so excited and happy, her smile was glowing all day on Sunday, even until we went to visit her that night.

Well, not much time today, (sidenote, 'Total Eclipse of the Heart' is playing in the ciber cafe we're in right now, but in Spanish.. Reminds me of my sister Haley everytime haha) The power went out this afternoon so we haven't been able to write until now. But quickly. I'll keep an eye out for the packages you've sent. The zone leaders go to Villahermosa tomorrow for a conference, and they should bring back all the mail and materials we need here in Carmen when they return.

I am so grateful to be here, this city is so beautiful, and the people are so amazing. I really do love them. I feel so at home with our branch of the church here, I don't want to leave haha. Elder Ibarra talked on the phone with the mission President the other day, and President mentioned something about me training next transfer, so hopefully I can stay here! hehe, moreso hopefully I can train well ha! I feel ready. Well, I love you all so much, everyone.

My family, friends, acquaintances. I hope you are all doing great, I pray for you all every day. Never forget how important you are to our Heavenly Father. Trust in Him, and in our Savior Jesus Christ, trust in the commandments and words of the prophets. Never doubt in His word. Read the scriptures, Pray always, and don't you dare miss a Sunday in the sacrament meeting. I love helping others, providing service to them, and teaching them about Jesus Christ.  I love missionary work. There is nothing else I would rather be doing right now. I know this is the true church, and is the pathway to return in Heavenly Father's presence, along with our families for eternity. I love you all so much. Take care,

Cuídense todos (take care all),
Elder Knight

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

November 21, 2011 letter home...

Querido familia,

This week has been great! I think I say this every week. But every week is amazing when you're on a mission, in the service of the Lord. This week especially though.
Elder Ibarra and I have really been trying to better ourselves in the work we do. Not that we're not working hard, but we are working on working more in the way Christ would. We have changed our companionship studies completely so that they are entirely focused in our investigadores. And it helps us so much, because we feel so much more prepared when we arrive at lessons and talk with people in the streets. Also, I feel like I'm getting better and better with my spanish every day too. Also, our entire zone made a new cambio resolution to exercise every morning, so that we are obedient. Because alot of mornings we wake up with no desire to work out, but I've been pushing it off and exercising every day so far(except Sunday)! Also, we talked with our apartment neighbor Daniel, and he said he wants to start running with us every morning. How grateful I am for the pair of running shoes I found in our apartment while cleaning last cambio. They were ripped in the front, but I took them to a zapateria and he sewed em up real nice for 30 pesos (like $2.50). Good as new.

Carlos and Jesus got baptized this week. Our branch is really stepping up and doing the missionary work here. It is so awesome to see. I LOVE all of our members, Sundays are seriously the best days because we can see all of them at church. Carlos was a reference from Norma, a member who pretty much adopted him because he was without a house. She is having tough economic times, and is such an example of faith and Christlike love. Even in her times of trouble, she takes in a young man to give him a home and food and a family. He loves the church, and shared his testimony in the baptism of how loved he feels to be in this family our ward. Jesus was a reference from the Hermano Ulises, who is a mechanic and has his own shop. Jesus is 16 years old and started working with Ulises as an assistant. He had a few problems with his grandma who takes care of him, and with drugs. But Ulises is his boss, shared the gospel with him, became a father figure, helped him overcome his addictions, and baptized him. He also is so great, we see him almost everywhere too, riding Ulises's bike around the colony running errands for him. This week Guillermo returns from Merida from a few medical appointments he had, and wants to get baptized this friday. We will see how things go, in the meantime we have been teaching his grandson Henry, and his girlfriend Ysenia. And their 4 year old son Alejandro, who always runs out and calls to us when we walk by their house. He is so funny, always smiling and happy no matter what happens.

Well, I love you all so much. Thank you for the emails. Best wishes to Grandma and Grandpa, it must stink to be so far apart. How great for Chelsea, Danny and Connor! I know that God answers our prayers. Caitlynn, you should email me something about whats goin on, because I don't know almost anything right now haha. You too Reagan! Mom and Dads explanations of your lives are not good enough haha. And Haley, keep working on your spanish, and then you Dad and I can all have our own language to talk in. And keep working on the mission prep. I totally regret not going to mission preparation classes when I had the chance. How dumb of me. We have started a program with our branch missionaries, where everyone should be reading the Book of Mormon daily, Preach My Gospel weekly, and going on visits with the full-time missionaries weekly. This will help you so much to prepare. Get to know the missionaries, and help them with whatever you can. Ask them to pass by your house and share a message with you and a non-member friend. No effort is ever wasted. And pray always for missionary experiences to find you every day.

This advice goes to all actually. I miss you all, and am so happy to be on a mission. Even though we are far away, I feel your love and prayers every day, and hope you all feel the same too. I know that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God. And that having faith in Him and obeying His commandments is what truly brings us peace and happiness in this life, as well as eternal life. Be obedient. If you have the priesthood, woooo be even more obedient, for you can not afford not to. Be examples of Christ in all things, in all places, and in every moment.

Love to all,
Elder King / Nike
(This is how people usually pronounce my name here haha)

Monday, November 14, 2011

What's up?

Mi querida familia,

You are awesome. Ciudad del Carmen is awesome. This week has also been very awesome. Well, I can't remember what I said in last week's letter, but Carlos Vera and Guillermo did not get baptized. They both are waiting for their baptismal interviews with Presidente, who finally comes this week. But they are both so excited and come to the church with such great attitudes! Carlos and I were in the hallway yesterday after church talking about the classes, and he told me that he wanted to pay his tithing, but didn't know how. I felt kind of bad, because Elder Ibarra and I had forgotten to explain how to fill out the tithing slips (which are different in Mexico btw). But I showed him where to find the envelopes and how to fill it out. He was so happy, and we went looking for the President so that Carlos could hand it to him. Ah, he is so ready to follow the commandments and put his life in order with the Savior.

Also, we spoke with the parents of Fany (pronounced Fawn-E), and they permited her to get baptized. Her parents are members, but inactive. Fany is 9 years old, and has been going to church for the past few months with her aunt Sandy who is active and lives next-door. Her parents both came to the baptismal service, and it was such a beautiful one. Afterwards, Elder Ibarra asked Marcos, Fany´s dad, if he liked it. And he said he loved it. On Sunday, her parents still didn't come to church, but Fany came with Sandy and was confirmed in sacrament by our branch president Guillermo. Who is now not the president, because he's moving to the other side of the island. Our new president is Pres Luis Naun (Loo-eez Nah-oon). He is the brother who plays the piano, and is a ward missionary. Super great guy, we all knew he was going to be the new branch president haha.

Elder Ibarra and I are doing great, we're always working. Thank you for the packages, I'll keep my eye out for 'em. Cambios(transfers) are today, and Elder Ibarra and I are both staying another. So I'll be here until Christmas!

Oh! And something super funny I learned this week. This one's for Ryan, Kristian, Kenny, Tyler, and all my brothers. "Popo", which we all used to signify police or cops, in spanish is poop. =) And I heard the Kooks the other day, it was way surreal. I didn't believe it at first, but it was true. It was a guilty pleasure since I'm in the mission and all. But I only heard a bit of it because we were walking...

Also, I couldn't think of anything I really need except for socks. All of mine are disappearing since we started washing our laundry with the zone leaders.. hmmmm.... So if you'd like, I could use some black or gray socks for christmas, some good ones. Not like thin dress socks, but not like thick hiking socks. But good ones haha you know how I am. I only need like 5 or 6 pairs. Also, corbatas (ties) are always good too, because I start losing them when I gift them to investigators and baptisms. Candy, notes, Rice Krispies Treats Cereal. Whatever you can think of, I'll accept with ready arms. Oh and a shout out to all those who are getting married already: You should send me a wedding invitation, I'm pretty sure if you're reading this that my address is one the same page. hahaha Sidethought, there is a family here exactly, I mean exactly, like the Bolsters'. I love them just as much too.

Haley, my sister, don't worry about the money for the mission. The Savior will support us in all of our righteous desires and actions. He will provide the way. Just keep preparing yourself to be a servant 100% dedicated to his work, and He will prepare the means for you to do just so. And most importantly, over all other things in this world and universe: I love you!! (And Jesus loves you too...)

My favorite scipture this week. Mosiah 18:8-10 .. This is what all of us covenanted to do when we accepted baptism. Never forget to care for the needs of our brothers and sisters in the church. They all need your help. Get to know every single member that you can, because you just might be that blessing that they are looking for.
I love you, and love Mexico too.

Saludos, Elder Knight

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Mi querido familia,
      Pues, another time my email to President got deleted. I really need to learn to copy it before I send it, but...these things come with time I suppose. Because I still can´t remember to do it until its already gone jaja (haha in Spanish).

      Anyways, This week has gone really well, Super fast, but really well. We worked and taught a lot. We taught a total of 47 lessons this week to investigators and inactive members. Unfortunately, we didn't baptize but I'll tell you about that in a moment.

      We had interviews with President Castañeda last week. WOW he is one of the most spiritual men I have ever met in my entire life. I just want to talk with him for hours, but the interviews are only like 15 minutes because he has to interview all of the other missionaries. Long story short, I had the greatest conversation with him, we sang a hymn and it has been stuck in my head forever this week. I think its "Jesus the Very thought of Thee" in English.

      Also Elder Ibarra and I have been teaching a young man named Carlos Vera this week. He just moved in from Candelaria with some members in our ward. I guess he originally came here to Carmen with a group of friends, and they all shared a room that they rented together, and they all worked at different times of the day. Carlos works in a Café from 9am-10pm every day. And I guess he returned to their room one day and all of his friends had left him and taken all of his stuff with them. So he was without a home, but a friend from his work (Julio Cesar - a member of the church) invited him to live with him and his family. He has told us how grateful he is for this family, and how they help him feel so loved. So we received permission from the mission, and we have been visiting him in the mornings at 7:00am this past week to teach him all of the lessons. He is progressing so well, and has already come to the church 4 times. (We had tried to visit him earlier these last few weeks, but his day-off from work always changed. Until we started visiting him in the mornings this past week…) He has made the choice to be baptized, and we will hold his baptismal service this Saturday morning at 10:00am, along with Guillermo…

      Guillermo is an 82 year old man who we found contacting. He always sits in front of his house, doing nothing really, but just sitting there. So anyways we went and spoke with him one day, and sang a hymn to him and his wife, and left a prayer and blessing in their home. Later, we returned to try and teach him, but it didn't seem like he understood us very well. So we returned again to at least concrete everything for him, and he had already read the pamphlet we left him. So we then left him with the Book of Mormon, and the invitation to pray to know it is true. Upon returning, he had done exactly so. As well as invite his daughter and grandchildren to listen to us too. We took him to a Branch Family Home Evening on Friday, and watched the Restoration. In which we then asked for testimonies to follow. Guillermo himself stood up and expressed his understanding of the First Vision, and how the Spirit had confirmed to him the truthfulness of all these things. ALL of the branch was so animated and surprised to hear this testimony from him. The video made everything so much clearer for him. I am grateful for television.

      I know that this church is true, that it is really the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.  I am grateful for the prophet Joseph Smith. I know that he was chosen by God to restore the truth of the gospel of Jesus Christ in these days. I am grateful for his example, as a righteous young man with undying faith in the Lord. If we look for the truth, we will find it. If we pray, He will answer us. If we are righteous, He will bless us in every aspect of our lives. We need to follow Him, nobody else. I know that my mission was chosen for me by revelation, that this is exactly where the Lord needs me right now. And I will do all that I can to make Him proud, and bring Him all of the glory. I pray that we all can make ourselves closer to Him, and put our will more in line with His.

      I am so grateful for the family that I have been blessed with. I hope everyone is oh so happy with the direction in which our Heavenly Father has placed us in this life. Congratulations Reagan! I hear so many amazing things about you. You are such an example to me, NEVER give up. Always look to do just what is right and the Lord will accompany you in every second of your every day. Caitlynn, Mom told me she stalked your boyfriend’s blog, and that she approves. I am happy for you and your future man, and wait for the day in which I can meet him. I hope Chelsea and Danny are doing well, I am praying for you all every day. I hope things are going how you plan and in a direction that helps you to see the blessings of the Lord in your lives. Mom and Dad, well you know you are both amazing. I couldn't have asked for better parents. I know God loves me because He has blessed me with the most beautiful family in the history of the world(no bias).. I am SO happy for you Haley, to be putting yourself in this path. I promise you that no matter what it takes, you will never regret the efforts you have made to be where I am today. Never.

      It is a pleasure to work in the vineyard of the Lord. And it is an honor to preach His law and His light to His people. Listen to the word of God, with fervor and faithfulness. Always remember His purity, truth, and love. Everyone, wield to the banner of god. If we guard the faith in our great God, we will all see each other soon while dwelling with Him in everlasting love.
      In the name of our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen.  Yours truly, Elder Knight

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween Letter from Trevor...

Mi querida familia,

(Trevor helping Elder Ibarra baptize a young girl)

I love you all so much. But don't have much time to write this week. I spent like 15 minutes writing my letter to Presidente, and when I sent it something screwed up and I had to write everything again. Times when I definitely hate computers haha. It has been a really good week though. We had zone conference with President Castañeda and his new counselor President ChiChia. President ChiChia is way humble and awesome, I love him. We practiced making contacts with him during the conference, and he taught us so much and inspired me to truly put more love and social aspects in all of our contacts. I can already feel my contacts being way more effective.

Also things are going great with Elder Ibarra and I! I learn so much every day, and we are helping so many people. I know that the gospel truly blesses our lives when we live according to it's teachings. Jesus Christ is the Savior of all the world, and paved the perfect path for us to walk on, if only we choose to follow him. I have thought about his guidance as a walkway..
Imagine that there is a straight path that leads to Christ. And you are walking on it, but cannot look down. You just have to walk wherever you are looking. The path to Christ, that he has paved, goes up and down, but is perfectly smooth and clean of debris or cracks. So all of the upward slopes are easy when we´re on the path.. Although sometimes we don't look at him, we are distracted by other things on the sides of this path, maybe a park, a surfboard, or a guy selling pozol(haha), whatever it may be. And we continue walking, but diverge from the path and start walking off until we trip on rocks, slip in mud, or soak our feet in puddles. Only to find that if we turn our head again to Christ, with His open arms, then we will start walking back towards the path, until we are on his pavement once again. If only we follow Him, and LOOK for Him, SEARCH for Him, we can be guided and everything will be much easier in this life.
Yes, it is complicated and I might not have explained it very well. To make things easier, just read the story of Lehi´s Dream of the Tree of Life in the Book of Mormon. Things will be much clearer and easier to understand, as it is the word of God, and He will help us.
Just know that I love you all so much, and am so grateful for your examples in my life. I don't know where I would be without you, my family, my friends, the church, everyone who I have ever met. You have all helped me so much in my life, especially in helping me prepare to go on this mission. I know my Savior Lives, I feel His presence with me when I follow Him and His commandments.

With love (and prisa), Elder Knight

Monday, October 24, 2011

October 24, 2011 letter to family and friends...

Querida familia,
Yes, another amazing week here in the mission field. Miracles happen. They happen every day. We just need to keep our eyes open for them. Just think of all the things we miss every day because we´re not paying attention... I can promise you there are alot. We often find ourselves focused on our own problems and whats going on in the moment. I was reading or something the other day, when I read/heard/something that "There are so many opportunities to serve others every day. But we miss so many of them only because our eyes are not open to them." I know that this is true. We should all try and LOOK, SEARCH for opportunities to serve, to help and reach out, to lend a hand to others. We have helped so many people this week. We decided to always keep our eyes open (spiritually) while walking to our appointments, not look at the ground, but look for opportunities to serve. To share the gospel, to hold a door open, to clean a a yard, to carry grocery bags, whatever it may be. Just do it. Don't think about if the person would accept your help or not, or if they really need it, or that you don't have the time. When we put others needs in front of ours, I promise you that God will take care of them both. I know that when we put the time into serving and helping others first, we are putting God in control of our lives. And who better to do so, eh?
This week Elena and Alejandra were baptized. Such a beautiful service too. The primary and relief society both sang special musical numbers. And we had about 45 people squished in this tiny room with only 30 chairs. Super crowded, with 8 people sitting across 5 chairs, and pretty loud with so many little kids. But oh, was the Spirit present, and reverence filled the whole room when the actual baptisms were performed. I will truly never forget it, how beautiful of a family the Chim Ko's are. And what a great feeling to know that their family can now be completed with these baptisms. The next step is temple sealing. Which will be so beautiful with Elena and Alejo. I hope I will be able to go with them in one year from now.
I received an email from a family in my first area. So great to hear from them, too bad I can't write them back in email though. SO great to hear how their family is progressing and staying true to the gospel of Jesus Christ.
I also received all of your emails! Sounds like things are going super great at home. I am so happy. I know that God answers our prayers. Well, now its time to go already. I love you all. Keep up the good work everyone. Keep moving forward.
With love, Elder Knight

Monday, October 17, 2011

Post on Reagan's birthday October 17th, 2011 Happy Birthday my youngest sister Reagan!

Querida familia mía,
Well, updates:
--The Family Chim Ko did not get baptized this week. Alejo, her husband, is still working on the oil platform and they want him to be here for their baptism. But this week he will for sure return.
--The weather has been crazy, so much rain! And they're saying a storm is coming in, but I'm not sure. We don't read newspapers or watch tv. For this reason, Alejo couldn't get off the platform, because of the weather =/
--This week I became a missionary. I was short one letter from home I guess, according to Hermano (brother) Heber. But now, I've got it. My 'Dear John' and everything to prove it! =D hahaha
--We spent all morning creating a pathway to Agustin's new house in the back of a marsh. His neighbors are crazy and block the pathway with old refrigerators and stuff, so we were working on clearing out trees and making a trail/bridge to his house with machetes, pallets, and stakes. I forgot to take pictures of us working, but I think Elder Ibarra has some.
 It was fun, but my shoes are filled with mud and who knows what else. I love Agustin so much, he was so happy to see us and work with us. Him and his wife are so strong, and have such great testimonies. It stinks that they're in another ward now.
Also, this week has been crazy fast. I can't even remember what happened. We ended yesterday with 20 lessons taught to inactives & less-actives. We've been focusing alot on reactivating those who are already members and cleaning up the branch directory. The Branch president, Pres Salazar and his counselors are all super willing to help us and do whatever they can to participate in the work here. Elder Ibarra and I have so much support right now, we're trying to figure out how to organize it all so that the branch missionaries and us can all work together often and effectively. We've started having meetings and training sessions every week with the members in which we train how to teach and share the gospel. Its going very well, and we've called 3 more couples to be missionaries too.
Oh my goodness, we have found too many escogidos to count these last two weeks! We've got many references of investigators from the branch that we are also working with, one from the Hna Domy. Their names are Lady and Roberto, and were neighbors with Hermana Domy and Hermano Ulises 4 years ago. We visited them this week, and got to know them so well. We started with a hymn, a prayer, and began to teach the gospel of Jesus Christ. Hermana Lady opened up to us, telling us how she is so happy we are here with them, that she feels so good and calmed to hear word we said. She said that they are looking for the thing that will help their family become united again, as their older daughter doesn't like talking with them, and their younger daughter is starting to follow.. In the end of the lesson, Hermano Roberto explained that everything sounded so familiar to him, and that he agrees with the message. We invited them to be baptized, and to bring their daughters to church with them. We're now doing all we can to help their daughters, and they are praying to know if they should be baptized. I know that God will answer their prayers, and help them to feel the importance and necessity of baptism in the true church of Jesus Christ.
There is so much evidence, it is impossible to deny once we come to familiarize ourselves with the gospel. ESPECIALLY the Book of Mormon. The greatest piece of evidence the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has to offer of its truthfulness. I have been reading the Liahona of October (Amazing by the way, everyone should have their own personal copy and read it ALL!) it helps me to understand the Book of Mormon more, and apply it in our teaching, contacts, and example every day.
Another escogido, Juan Carlos. Wow, I have never found an investigator so prepared. He's 19 years old, and is super good at soccer. When we contacted him in the street, he was walking away from the Obrera(where he lives). And we asked when we could visit him. He told us that we could follow him back to his house and teach him right then. So we did, and found out that he has been so well prepared by the Savior to receive this message. We taught him and his uncle, and gave Juan Carlos a Book of Mormon. We invited him to read 3 Nephi 27, and to pray. Upon returning two days later, he had read the chapter, and started reading from the beginning too. He was in 1 Nefi 5, and he retold us the story of Nephi returning to Jerusalem with his brothers for the plates and everything, with so much conviction and understanding! We focused on what the Book of Mormon teaches us, and left him with the invitation to be baptized. He accepted with no doubts. We asked him if he would like to see a baptismal service this week, and he said he had work,  but he would ask for time off to go. We returned two more days later, and he had already finished 1 Nephi, all of it. And received an answer that the Book of Mormon is true, that he is so animated when he reads it. And that he feels so much better every day at work and in home with this knowledge. I know the Lord prepares His children for the missionaries. He is preparing all of us to return in His presence.

I know without a doubt that going on my mission is the best decision I have ever made. I feel so much joy just being here in the service of the Lord. When I feel tired or spiritually drained, my Savior replaces these feelings with love, charity, and a burning passion to share these feelings with all others. I know that the Book of Mormon is true. It is evidence given to us that Joseph Smith was chosen by God to restore His true church on the Earth in these latter-days. I know without a doubt that He loves us, and is preparing us to be better persons with every moment that takes place in our lives. I feel tranquilidad and peace to know that He is guiding me always, and that I can receive power and spirituality when I am obedient, work hard, and love everyone. I know that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet called of God. That his counselors and the 12 Apostles are also called of God, to guide us and help us understand His word and will for us, His beloved children. I know that I have the best family in the world (a little biased, I know) and that we will be together forever because of the ordinances performed in the holy temple. Most of all, I know that Christ loves me, that He lives, and that He wants every single one of His children to know of the true gospel. For we cannot be saved without it. Feast on the scriptures, live the gospel, love thy neighbor, and share this sweet message with all. This is the path to happiness. This is the path to eternal life.
I Love You All, Elder Knight