Tuesday, September 18, 2012

September 17th PICS

The first picture my comp and with sombreros. Oh, they make sombreros here too. It is cool. They make shoes and cowboy hats.
The next one is with Karla y Diana. They are the daughters a recent convert and are so cute.
The last one is of our pants when it rained really hard and then we went out in the rain to an investigators house to share a message. She lived our of town, so the roads were mud.
Love you!
Love Elder Crouch

September 17th Dog fight and Flowers

Wow, sounds like mom and dad had a great time on their trip! ha ha ha. Those are the best kinds of adventures! I definitely know how you feel in a way. You have all of these great things planned and then it all falls through... ha ha ha. Also, you guys are so white! In the picture dad sent me, holy cow! ha haha! Get some sun! ;D KK, sounds like school is great and I´m sure you weren´t all that afraid... Man, everyone is growing up. Zach looks older. What happened to my little bud? ha ha ha.
Well, this week was really interesting. We had some success. The other Elders in San Pancho are going to have a baptism! Their investigator was afraid to take the step, but after the ward baptism, she decided to do it. This Friday. We, on the other hand have no success. We had no investigators at church, but we had some experiences this week. So I don´t know if I have told you, but the birds are migrating. Every night for the past month or so the trees are full with birds. It is kinda cool, but I learned not to walk under the trees, because they poop... enough said there. So Maria Elena, a recent convert, shared an awesome experience with us. Basically her life stinks. Her husband is back living with her, and every time he comes home we fights with her. He actually had the guts to tell her that she can´t leave the house to do things unless it is "chores" such as getting her daughters from school. He told her she can´t go to church too. And THEN he doesn´t do anything. She is paying for all  of the bills. Basically he is lucky I am a missionary and represent Jesus Christ, because if not, well I don´t want to think about it. Anyways, she has no money to buy a skirt for her daughter and there was a dance in school. She had been praying all week long, and finally the day before the dance she felt impressed to ask a neighbor for one and her neighbor had a skirt and two blouses! God is amazing! He answers prayers! I love him so so much!
You should also know that this weekend Mexico celebrated its independence (16 sep). Friday we were on our way to a meeting and it started to rain. Then it really started to rain! We found cover in a shrimp shack and I helped peel shrimp for a while until the rain let up. Then we went to our meeting. The fun part was that the road was a river. I was on my bike and and the water was higher than my shoes in some points. I have never seen it rain so hard in my life! Saturday night we were in our house by 8. It was definitely a good thing. When Mexico parties, it parties. I also got a bouquet of flowers from someone... a 72 year old woman. ha ha ha. We eat lunch at her house and I started talking to her about her flowers. Then she picked some and gave me some. One was a narcissus flower. It is white and SO SO SO beautiful. I have never seen a flower so beautiful! It was fun. On Sunday as we were walking to lunch we saw a dog fight right in front of us. The boy was asking for help, but there was no way I was going to get close, because the one winning was a pit bull, and I know those things have muscle, I´ve felt it. Plus there were other people helping. They grabbed the back legs of both dogs and pulled. I tell you what this dog did not want to let go.
Basically these are the exciting things going on in my life. It is hard to preach at times, because my comp doesn´t always want to work. Sometimes we leave the house a lot later than we should or we are at lunch way to long. I am working on being more obedient, but it is hard when you have a comp that isn´t all the way frito, but is somewhat. I still love him, and I am going to try to help him more.
I love you all!
Keep strong. The Gospel is true!
Love Elder Michael Blake Crouch
Ps. Every member a missionary!
love you!

September 10th

Wow, another week down. Next week I will have 6 months in the mission.
Hard to believe. Well, I´ll try to be careful on the bike mom. I have
had some pretty close calls, but you should also read Chapter 5 of
1Nefi. It is pretty good. I also bought a headlight for the bike.
Maybe I´ll take some money out to buy a helmet. They cost about 600
pesos (which is a little pricey). It is so weird. Sky is telling me the
seasons changing at home, but it is about the same here, if not a
little more fresh and a little dryer. We had a fecha (date) to be
baptized for one of our investigators, but she didn´t come to church.
One of the biggest problems here in San Pancho is that everyone works
all the time. The shoe industry is big here. It is cool to see how a
shoe is made. I think I´ll buy the stuff to make them and make my own
shoes for the rest of my life. A whole lot cheaper. ha ha ha. Also, it
is really catholic here. We didn´t have a lot of success this week. We
had a big conference on Friday and my comp was a little dead. I had to
pull all week long and towards the end, mainly Saturday and Sunday, I
died a little. This week I am really going to push my comp. We talked
about it a little bit. First I am going to give pep talks. If that
doesn´t work, then I´m going to planch, o sea, give a scripture that
makes one realize what they are doing is wrong. It was a tough week. I
try not to judge or say things that are bad about him (such as not
lifting up the lid to go the the bathroom, etc), but when it comes to
following the commandments, I´m going to be a lot more strict. That was
the biggest challenge of the week. Also, in the conference we had we
were told to teach to the needs of the people and the whole family,
even the kids under 8. I tried doing that. I have a picture book of
the scriptures and showed some of the pictures and asked who they
were. I tell you what, it was a really spiritual experience. I love
being a missionary it is the best. It is the hardest thing, but really
rewarding. I feel something changing in me.
Today we played soccer. I was the goalie and my team beat all of the
others (about 5). Then I changed out and we lost. I am always the
designated goalie now, even though it isn´t my favorite place. Also I
GOT THE PACKAGE!!! Thanks KK! The cookies were SO SO SO SO good!
Everyone loved them. Also, I love the ties. Not going to lie. I have
worn two already.
Well, I love you all!
Thanks for your support.
Love Elder Michael Blake Crouch
Every Member a Missionary
ps. I got letters from Grandma A. and Tory
Pss. Way to go Zach in finding work! It is a super crappy job, but I love it!
Psss. I have heard from other missionaries that parents go crazy when
they send their kids on missions. Mainly they just buy stuff... I
didn´t believe it until you told me you spent 2000 on your truck, and
then went and bought a new car... I now believe it... ha h ah ah.
Love you!

September 3rd

Hola! ¡Cómo estan? Espero que todo está bien con ustedes.
I loved hearing from everyone! It totally made my day! ha ha ha! I just can´t believe that not one of my siblings stood up for me when you were talking about my embarrassing moments. WHAT IS THIS? ha ha ha. No, It sounds like you all had a fun time. Congrats to the twins. I´m excited to speak in Spanish when I get home.
Well, as for my week.... =)
It was pretty good. We had some good lessons. We worked so hard to get some menos activos to church, but out of the 4 we went with, only 1 showed up. We did have two investigators at church! That was great. It was a stake conference, and we watched it via internet. At times it was a pain, because it froze or what not, but I could still feel the Spirit there. Also, Presidente Del Valle y su esposa discorsaron o sea, they gave a talk. I love them to death. They are basically our parents. Not that anyone can trade mom and dad, but just so you know, they love us so much and really do look after us. They are great people!
I don´t know if I have mentioned this, but in San Pancho we get a lot of rain. Probably because of the hurricane, but wow. Last night it was thundering and lightning like none other.
Friday, well, ha ha ha. That was a day from a very bad place. EVERY SINGLE APPOINTMENT AND PLAN FELL THROUGH! Even the food! It was SO hard! Plus, it was hot, then the wind blew (really strongly), and then the rain came. ha ha ha! It rained so hard. We got soaked to the bone. We went to an investigators home and she was having a baby shower, so we got turned back out to the rain. Have you ever heard of the refiners fire? That was Friday. The weird thing was I knew what was happening. So while it was raining I was saying a prayer of thanks that we could work in the rain. While the wind was blowing I was praying for the strength to overcome it. and with the heat, well, I know I want to make it to heaven now because that just stunk!
Saturday we did divisions. I went with the District Leader Elder Backman. I learned a whole lot. I have SO much to work on. I really have been humbled. I never knew how much. I know more now than ever that I need the Lord in my life and on this mission. We had some success and had an awesome lesson, but the man, Israel, didn´t accept it to well. Has fear or something.
Sunday we had a lesson. It was a lesson with the aunt of a member and this person, veronica, had been taught by other elders. We had an awesome lesson, and I challenged her to be baptized and to prepare herself to be baptized the 22 of Septiembre. Well, SHE ACCEPTED!!!! Now we are getting somewhere! It was a great lesson. We know a challenge that we are going to have with her, and not really her. Her husband is a TJ, o sea, testigo de Jehova.
Well, I know this work is important. I don´t even feel sad about missing the family reunion. It is a great time to be a missionary. I love you all so much and love this work and gospel! Stay strong!
Grams, I´m sorry I haven´t sent a letter out yet. I have one written, I just need to get it to the mail place. I have no idea where the office is in San Pancho, and in Leon, well, we don´t pass by it. It is really different than in the US. So, I am working on it. ha h aha
Love you!
Love, Elder Michael Blake Crouch
ps. Every member a missionary
pss. Oh, and the next time you send a package (probably Christmas) It would be nice to have some piano music (gospel related of course). I had to play for a recital, and I have NO songs in my head. I played the begining of Rachmaninoff, but soon lost it. So yeah. ha ha ha. Also a chord book or something, because I may or may not have bought a guitar... So I may or may not be learning to play... ha ha ha. Love you
Te quiero