3 Baptisms and a Birthday!

We had a really good week. Started out with a lesson with a new
investigator named Linda. She is a referral from the Estrella Ward.
She was dating and living with a return missionary. When she found out
that she was living in sin and couldn’t be baptized they were married
within the week. She invited her niece and mom to the lesson. The mom
was resisting a little bit so Linda eventually just said “if you won’t
be baptized you won’t be able to see me be sealed in the temple.” So
it sounds like she is pretty interested in progressing.

I also had exchanges with Elder Salinas (who I served with in Peoria)
and Elder Miller (the Zone leader) and that helped keep the week
interesting.

On Saturday, Joseph and Michael Yañez were baptized back in Peoria.
Because I left there less than 6 weeks ago we got to go back to attend
it. Elder Clough left 18 weeks ago so he was lucky that he was my
companion. It was an awesome baptism. It was cool to see a lot of the
members from my old ward.

That night we had a family home evening with the Velazquez family.
Afterwards they brought out a birthday cake. After completing the
‘Mexican tradition’ of getting my head stuffed into the frosting we
enjoyed some cake and ice cream.

That night we got to see Sister Bosen from Peoria, and my Arizona
family dropped off a package at our door. So I have 5 tubs of Blue
Bell now. So much for losing weight in a bike area.

Sunday we had a baptism for Gloria, someone we had been teaching. Her
sister came. We have been teaching her too. She was really excited to
be baptized and it was a great experience for the ward and her family.

We also referred a deaf kid to the ASL missionaries. He is the friend
of a ten year old girl in our ward. She just started ‘picking up sign
language’ to communicate them. They are actually in the Scottsdale
mission but they cover our mission too. The kid didn’t turn out to be
interested at all. But it was still cool to see his face when he met
someone he could communicate with.

It was a good week and this is Elder Clough’s last so this one will be even better!

Elder Walker

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Mission Rivals?

This week wasn’t too eventful. We had our last interview with
president Griffen on Friday. It will be weird to seem him go. He says
that the new president will get here one day. And he will leave three
hours later. Not a whole lot of transition time. President Griffen was
really proud of us because apparently the last three months we ‘best
Vegas’. Its not really a competition because the Vegas mission doesn’t
care about us at all. Either way for the first time in the President
Griffen Era we had better numbers. The APs claimed that he “giggled”
when he found out. I don’t know if I believe that.

Saturday and Sunday we had Stake Conference. Its really cool having a
stake with 3 Spanish wards. Plus most of the people in the English
wards speak Spanish anyway. Elder Hallstrom of the presidency of the
70 came. They talked a lot about how we need to have a knowledge that
we are children of our Heavenly Father. At first I thought that that
didn’t really apply to me, as I had been taught this and believed it
since I was six. I remembered that a belief only because faith when it
promotes action. How do I act differently if I know that I am a son of
God? Do I treat others differently? I don’t really know the answers to
any of these questions but I will keep pondering it and I invite you
to as well.

Love,

Elder Walker

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Happy Mothers’ Day

Happy mothers day everyone!

We had zone conference this Friday. It was President Griffen’s last
because next transfer we are going to have a mission party instead. He
already started to say his goodbyes. It sounds like he is really
excited to go home. Haha.

Saturday afternoon we went to the church to go to the bathroom before
biking around for a few more hours. It turns out the bishop and two
other people were in the kitchen preparing for the mothers day party 4
hours later. So we spent the next four hours cutting what must have
been at least a billion strawberries. I felt bad because later I found
out that the English ward was having a baptism 20 feet away from us
blasting latin dancing music. They said they couldn’t hear it. I don’t
believe them.

Last night a man stopped us as we were biking home. He said he had
become a drug addict and he really needed help. We talked to him for a
while and he told us his name and told us to look him up. We did and
it turns out that he is a super famous paster who travels the United
Stares and Africa giving spiritual speeches. You know, the kind with
lots of yelling. So that was pretty funny.

Sorry nothing too exciting happened this week. I also got to talk to
my parents this Sunday and so was a lot of fun. My brothers seem to be
changing a lot and I don’t know what to think about that.

Hope everyone has a great week!

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7 White Guys and a Tongan walk into a Mexican restaurant ….

This week Elder Clough and I discovered a new purpose for our Spanish
missionary work. Learning how to make waters (they call any water
based fruit drink water) Unfortunately we didn’t have enough sugar to
make Gatorade de pepino con limón (cucumber lime) but whatever we made
it definitely had too much sugar to be water.

After this fast Sunday on bike we were pretty hungry. We got to our
dinner and it was some kind of cocktail de camarón y pulpa. I
surprisingly didn’t completely dislike the taste or even texture of
octopus but I sure didn’t like looking at it for too long.

For P Day our district went to a restaurant for lunch called reyes de
la torta. It was weird because it was a packed restaurant full of
hispanics and then 7 white guys and a Tongan walk in and all start
speaking Spanish with the waitresses. I like the Spanish district and
I think that it is a great opprutunity to try to immerse ourselves
more in the language.

I really like this ward. Being on bike is a little hard. Half the days
this week hit 105 and the other days seemed to me like hurricane speed
winds that only point the opposite way that you are. But we stay busy
and there is really good potential. I have never been in an area with
more hispanics then gringos. I hope to be able to update you on some
baptisms before the end of the transfer.

I will talk to you all next week! I will keep you updated on all the
new aguas that we make!

Fast Sunday again, and again and again

Have you ever wanted fast Sunday dinner every day?

We will get to that later but first, transfers…

I went to the transfer building on Wednesday not knowing where I would
be at the end of the day. I found out there wasn’t going to be as many
changes as I thought. 4 Spanish Elders switched. I went down to the
Phoenix Spanish District with my last companion Elder Clough. The ward
is called Encanto 1st. It is as downtown Phoenix as our mission goes.
To tell you about the number of hispanics in the area, the Spanish
ward covers a smaller area than the english ward. The english ward is
called Maryville. Word is that it has 1200 members. 1000 less active.
And they are still baptizing like crazy in there. That’s the Aps ward.

It is way different than Agua Fría. Not to mention that it is full
bike. It seems like a great ward. It has only been in the mission
since September so not many people know much about it.

I got here and Elder Clough told me that today was the first day of a
40 day fast the ward is doing. Each family will fast for one day
separately. I jokingly said it would have been cool if we corresponded
the dinner calendar and the fast calendar. He looked at me blankly and
said “that is what we did, why?” So for the past week we have been
having a fast Sunday sized dinner every night. I will let you know how
that combats daily biking.

I will talk to you all next week!