Sunday, November 8, 2009

Friday, November 6, 2009 -- Carta de Elder Rowley 6 Nov 2009

Greetings from the mission offices in Guadalupe, Nuevo Leon!

. . . The mission office is located within the Libertad Stake Center in Guadalupe, close to the city of Monterrey. In the offices there is President Mendoza's office and a large office shared by the assistants and the executive, financial, record, and material secretaries. There is also a room where the assistants and the secretaries sleep and keep their personal belongings. There is a kitchen, a bathroom, a large courtyard, and a room full of bunk beds called the “heroes hall,” where the missionaries stay on their first or last night in the mission, as well as when they have to come to the offices for a conference or a sickness or something like that.

I have a lot to learn and a lot to improve in order to be a good assistant. I'm very excited for this time that I have to work closely with President Mendoza. As [Redlands stake] President Carlson promised me in the blessing when he set me apart, I have learned great things from my mission president.

This week we have been working with President Mendoza in what he calls “the sacred process of transfers.” It has been an incredible experience. In President Mendoza’s office, there is a huge board covered with cards that show the picture and information of every missionary in our mission. Because every six weeks we have heroes who leave and "Valiants" who arrive, as well as situations that require changes in certain companionships, it is necessary to make many changes to that board, symbolizing the transfers that will take place in the mission. We start with the zone leaders, then the district leaders, then tutors, then senior companions, then junior companions. It is amazing. It is like a huge puzzle mixed with a giant Risk game, because it requires strategy and forethought, analyzing the needs of every area and every missionary.

We take into account everything from the missionary’s personality to how long he has been riding a bike. But the most amazing thing about transfers is how much we rely on the Lord. We are constantly praying and seeking inspiration. When we decide on something, we pray seeking the Lord’s confirmation and approval. Transfers are not the will of President Mendoza, or his assistants. They are the will of the Lord.

Right now I have two companions, Elder Rivera and Elder Olguin. Elder Rivera will return home on Monday, leaving Elder Olguin as the senior assistant and me as his companion.

This Sunday we will have two baptisms here; and in Cumbres, the area I left in Reynosa, Claudia, Perla's mom, is going to be baptized. The two baptisms here are Melisa and Alejandra, two teenage girls. Finding them was an interesting experience. You will remember that a few weeks ago I spent a day working with the assistants when I came to visit the mission offices. While we were working, I contacted a teenage couple sitting on a park bench. The girl in that couple was Melisa. Elder River and Elder Olguin visited her and her family and found out that her father was a less active member (he is now attending church again and is very excited about the gospel.) They also met her younger sister Alejandra and began to teach them. I arrived just in time to finish the missionary lessons and to see their baptism this Sunday.

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Mom, thanks for everything you do. I feel bad about asking for more things, but as an assistant it is important that I set an example in everything, including my dress and appearance. I only have two pairs of pants that are really wearable, because the others are faded, or torn, or both. I also only have one suit. In regards to white shirts, with two more short sleeved shirts size 17.5 from Missionary Mall, I'll be fine. The suit and the pants I will buy myself here. In fact today we are going to buy clothes. I would appreciate it if you could put a little more money in my checking account. But after today I shouldn't need any more clothes for the rest of my mission.

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