Much has happened since last I wrote. Last Friday, as you know, we recived reinforcements. Eight valiant new missionaries arrived from the united states. "Valiant" is a word that President Mendoza always uses to describe the new missionaires, and it truly applies to this new group. Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, which I spent teaching them, was an incredible experience.
Saturday afternoon at the last moment, we decided with President Mendoza that it would be best for us to bring the new missionaries to their areas that day. So we were off to Reynosa. We made good time and were able to introduce them to their companions and return to Monterrey before 9:30 PM.
Monday, as always, was full of office work--talking with and counseling the zone leaders, filling out reports for Salt Lake and for President Mendoza. It went well.
Tuesday we had a zone leader council. We presented to the zone leaders a new zone leader's manual that my companions and I have been working on for a few weeks, among other things. The council also went well. That same night we had a ward missionary activity planned. When we told President Mendoza about it, he told us not to change it, but that he would excuse us early from the ZLC. My companions had both finished their participation before time came, but I still had two topics left to discuss with the council. So my companions went without me, and I stayed to support President and do my part.
The truth is I was a little disappointed that I wasn't able to attend the activity that we had planned. We did a lot to plan and prepare the activity, and I wanted to attend. (I was especially excited to be a judge in the salsa contest (salsa as in sauce, not in dance.)) But my companions told me that it went well. There were over 70 people in attendance, including ten investigators. Even though I wasn't able to attend, I am happy that it was a success, and that my companions and I were able to fulfill our dual duties (to president and to our area) at the same time. We have two other activites planned soon and I am sure that they will also be successes.
Wednesday we went to the temple. Every time I go, I learn something new and feel something special. The peace of the temple is incredible, as is the clarity with which we can recieve revelation.
After the temple, we had another surprise visit to the border. A companionship is opening an area in a pueblito near San Fernando, Tamaulipas, and we had to go stock their new house with furniture. (It is about a 4.5 hour drive from Monterrey.) We went and came back all on the same day.
Yesterday we had to spend extra time in the office to make up for what we had lost Tuesday and Wednesday, as well as to print the zone leader manuals, since they loved them in the council and President promised that we would have them out by Monday.
So I haven't had much proselyting time this week. But that's OK. I understand that my office work, and trips to the border are other forms of "the service of God," and I enjoy and learn from each experience. The two lessons which we have had this week have gone really well. Monday night we had a FHE with a young recent convert and her husband, who is an ex-Catholic missionary. We taught the Restoration in a didactic way, and he understood. He also attended Tuesday's activity and is excited to go to general conference.
I love teaching families. Yesterday, we taught the land lady of the house where the missionaries used to live. She has a good opinion of the Church and the missionaries because the missionaries who have lived there have been respectful. We talked to her about prophets and she too is excited to attend general conference this weekend.
I think I am the most excited about general conference. It is always my favorite weekend. General Conference is the epitome of the Restored Gospel, since it is when we listen to the modern prophets and Apostles who receive revelation from God. I am also happy because I know that you will be watching the same conference. . . . We will be under the same satellite, which is just as special although not quite as romantic as being under the same moon.