Monday, December 28, 2015

Week 79 Feliz navidad y año nuevo

Great but weird week!!  

Talking home was awesome!! Even if it did take 4 hours to find a computer to call home with. haha 

Our Christmas party was awesome and we had mashed potatoes with our lunch so what else could I really ask for?! 

Christmas night was interesting. We ended up having tortillas with salt sprinkled on them for dinner because Pizza Hut was closed so there was no delivery and it was too late to leave the house for food. haha  It wasn't your traditional Christmas dinner, but it was chill hanging out with some other missionaries and just relaxing a little. 

Saturday we passed by everyone, inviting them to go to church. Sadly the tradition here is get drunk Christmas eve and then stay drunk until New Years, so we didn't have much success this week. haha

One super cool experience was when we showed up at Hermana Yolanda's house. She is a convert of about a year now and is probably 45 years old. About 5 months ago her mom died, and this was going to be her first Christmas without her. She felt so sad and alone and scared for a bunch of problems that were going on in her family that in the end she decided it would be better just to drink away the holidays like everybody else. She had just sent a kid to buy her some alcohol when we turned the corner walking towards her house. She quickly told the kid to come back and without telling us what had happened invited us in. We are teaching a son of hers and without even knowing the situation had planned to teach the Word of Wisdom. About halfway through the lesson we asked her what blessings she had received for obeying this commandment. At which point she broke into tears and explained to us that she had almost broke for the first time since her baptism. She cried as she told us she had been praying for God's help and when she had finally given up he sent his 2 little "white angels" to her house to protect her from falling into temptation. 

It's hard to describe the feeling you get when God sends you to answer someone's prayer. It's something hard to compare with any other feeling, something unforgettable. 

I hope everyone had a great Christmas and had the chance to be the answer to someone's prayer this week, through an act of service. 

Love you all and thanks for your constant support!

Elder Davis

Pics:  Christmas punch we made, at an activity, tortilla Christmas dinner, and me passed out at the church after a super long night 

Week 78 Merry Christmas!!

This has been one of the most interesting weeks in my mission. Full of lots of things, but ended super awesome!! 

Tuesday we did service for a member who had planted a ton of corn on the side of a mountain... we woke up early and got to his field at 6 am and picked/hauled corn until 1:30 pm. It was exhausting but super fulfilling. The slope where he had planted the corn was so steep we kept falling and then sliding for a ways before being able to stop... it made the work harder but really fun at the same time. 

Thursday we gave service again and helped get the foundation going to add on to this persons house... pretty much just digging holes and mixing cement for a few hours, but lots of fun. 

Oh yeah and guess who is giving singing lessons to the branch... yup Elder Davis hahahahahahaha who would have ever thought... I am tone def. It's a long story but yeah just call me Elder Tune if you want (do you guys remember Elder Tune?? hahaha)

Sunday we had the district Christmas devotional. We headed out to San Vicente after church and got back around 8 that night. It was a fun trip and some investigators really liked the presentation. They talked about the classic Christmas stories and the importance of remembering our Savior this year. They invited everyone to give the gift of taking your own names to the temple this year to the Savior for Christmas. Really neat day. 

Well that's about it... Can't wait to talk on Christmas! Hope you all have a Merry Christmas and can do at least one thing to serve someone else Christmas day!

love Elder Davis

Monday, December 14, 2015

Week 77 Changes!!!

Changes are always sweet because it gives you a chance to start fresh, start new goals, and get to know a new companion and area... but at times they are kinda hard as well. 

I am now in the beautiful hilly (honestly it is all hills- you are either walking up or down steep hills at all times... there is no flat) town of Sensuntepeque with Elder Gutierrez from Guatemala. 

It was pretty tough saying goodbye to San Miguel... I really love that place and had to say goodbye to some really great people, but I guess it was the will of the Lord and I'm excited to see what we can get done here. 

Our branch is one the smallest in the mission (about 30 attend sacrament meeting each week, about 15 in sunday school, and us 4 missionaries and 3 members stayed all the way through the 3rd hour haha) Last week the branch president turned his keys in and said he was done with the church, but its all chill because we got a new branch president this week... an RM who got home from the mission 2 weeks ago!! 

I'm pretty pumped though to see what the Lord has in store for us here. I kinda like being in little branches because you can see the fruits of your efforts a little more, and the other 2 missionaries in the branch are both good friends... President met up with me and Elder Durbin (he was ZL in the zone right next to mine in San Miguel so we worked a ton together) after the change meeting and pretty much told us, "save the branch and save your companions".  I didn't really understand what he meant until we got here. hahaha

Also side note, I have heated showers!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I didn't know those existed here. It's just this little electrical thing they hooked up to the shower head and it feels so good to feel hot water for the first time in almost a year and a half.  haha

So yeah that's pretty much it. I'm happy, pumped for the work and trying to get to know the area. 

Hope everyone is doing good,  and that you can give service to someone in some way this Christmas season. 

Love Elder Davis

Monday, December 7, 2015

Week 76

As always this week was awesome. Some tough moments as usual, but overall super great. 

Being in a trio has been really fun. It's hard to get teaching down, but I like both my comps so it was really cool. I'm going to miss it:(

So we did divisions with a member on Tuesday and my comp supposedly found a couple super positive people living in the same house. Apparently they both accepted baptismal dates, the invitation to go to the temple, and the invitation to go to church. He set another appointment for Thursday and all day Thursday he just talked to us about how great of a lesson it was going to be. So we get there and an old man welcomes us into the tiny house and when we ask if the people were there he told us to go ahead and pass to the next room where they were. As we walked in there was the lady (who was supposed to be super positive) a random man, and a male prostitute who was dressed and acted like a girl getting off the ground.... we were so shocked and it took us a second to take it all in... not to mention the vodka bottles that were on the floor. The lady tried to make an excuse, but almost fell over drunk and started looking for the pamphlet my comp had left with her in a bag full of not so great stuff that the prostitute brought. We left the house, turned the corner and my comp sat on the sidewalk so confused while me and my other comp just busted up laughing... it was probably one of the funniest moments in my mission!! None of us could teach another lesson afterwards so we just went and bought pupusas and tried to stop laughing at my companion who had been talking all day about how great a lesson it was going to be! :) The El Salvador mission life never gets boring!! hahaha

Other than that we had our temple trip Saturday. It wasn't as successful as last time because none of the wards had money at the end of the year to pay for buses and it is a big blow financially on these people to travel up to San Salvador, but the people that we got there had a great trip. We got home and then I had probably the most spiritual and one of the happiest moments in my life, but I'll tell you about it another time. 

I am going to have changes Wednesday and have no idea where I'm going or who will be my comp for Christmas so it should be fun. I'm really going to miss this area and San Miguel. It is by far my favorite area in the mission and I am leaving behind a bunch of people that I love like family... but I am happy to see where the Lord sends me. 

Love you all.  Hope you have an amazing week!

Elder Davis

Monday, November 30, 2015

Week 75 "HOY"

A little San Miguel culture fact in case you choose to visit some day... when approaching a friend or answering a call, etc. You generally will shout, "HOY!" in a high pitched voice before begining to talk.... I have been a while here in San Miguel now and I have kinda got used to doing it so just be prepared if I do it when I get home. It's not that I'm shouting at you... Its a good thing:) 

This week was crazy! We couldn't work Monday or Tuesday. Wednesday and Thursday we had some tough responses from investigators that had been progressing. It's really sad to see people turn away from the spirit they had felt, but not much we can do at this point.

Friday and Saturday was the carnival of San Miguel. This thing is HUGE. All of us missionaries here had to go to other cities to work because the entire city converts into a huge party. Everyone goes... We met quite a few people this week from the states and other central american countries who had come in for the carnival. We went to work with the assistants and got to sleep in air conditioning for 2 nights so it was awesome. 

Sunday we went to church and then visited all the investigators we hadn't been able to visit all week. Sadly not many had progressed without us there, but a few have gotten kinda far into the Book of Mormon so that made us happy. 

This next week we are praying that the ward helps out with divisions so we can get a bunch of stuff in, but not quite sure who will be willing to help us, so pray that the ward members want to visit this week with us!!! 

Thanks for everything, hope you all have a great week!

Elder Davis

My new comp Elder Acosta (we are in a trio) super cool guy... we talk baseball a ton so its awesome. But he is a Yankee fan/ Jeter worshiper  (he's from Penn) so generally we will could never be best friends haha

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Week 74

Sorry I couldn't write yesterday... but president gave me 15 minutes to write today. 

Overall a good week, finished it off with another sweet wedding... but really I should be a wedding planner when I get back because I would make bank.  hahaha

And now I'm in a trio.. they sent us another elder... he's a cool guy so we are happy and hoping we can do lots of divisions and cover more ground. 

Everything is going great. Thanks for all your emails and pictures!!

Love Elder Davis

Monday, November 16, 2015

Week 73 I am exhausted

I am soooooo tired right now. The latest we woke up this week was 5:00 am and the earliest was 
3:00 am... I just want to find my hammock and pass out!!! 

But actually this week was super awesome (but exhausting)!!

Tuesday we spent all day looking for a house for a new area they were opening zona San Miguel!! We walked from lunchtime until 7:00 pm, and finally found one!!! 

Wednesday we went to the changes meeting and they sent a ton of sisters to our zone!!! We are now almost half sisters and half elders.... sisters are way more loving and can do so many things that us as elders are just incapable of doing... but having a zone full of sisters can sometimes be such a headache. I may have grey hair in a couple more months but then maybe mom wouldn't feel so bad when she finds grey hair so maybe its not all bad! haha

Thursday we tried to move the sisters into the new house we found for them, but the owner practically turned into a big jerk and changed a ton of terms and they couldn't move in and I had to waste $10 dollars of minutes to call the United States because that's where the owner is illegally living right now. Finally we just paid a guy to come take all their stuff and throw it in the other sisters house. 

Friday we went to San Salvador for leadership council. It was such a good meeting!! Inspiration and revelation are so real! 

Saturday we tried to cram a week of work into 1 day. It was a super great day. 

Sunday- we woke up super early and moved the sisters into the house a terrible investigator, but great friend found for them. Went to church, and then did a baptismal interview... another great day. 

Today we rented a bus and all headed out to Alegria Laguna... a sweet little lagoon about an hour from San Miguel where we played soccer and welcomed all the new people to the zone. Super great p-day.

I'm happy, healthy,etc. 

Have a great week! and thanks for everything
Love Elder Davis

Monday, November 9, 2015

Week 72 Another change in chapa

We just got the changes call and it looks like my comp and I are sticking together here in Chaparrastique, San Miguel! We are excited because things are all good here. 

Sunday was a great day full of great experiences. It all started when we went to get investigators in the morning and take them to church. We left earlier, but found nothing but 4 closed doors. We got to the chapel about 5 mins before the meeting started and not a single investigator was there. The bishop asked us to bless the sacrament and so we went to sit on the stand. As we began singing the first hymn I began to pray. I was pretty upset with myself for not having any investigators there... and more than anything was asking for forgiveness (a few months ago a 70 came to our mission and one of the things he said is that if we don't have investigators in sacrament meeting we need to be on our knees begging forgiveness). I felt pretty bad and was trying to come up with ideas of things I could have done differently to have had people there. As the opening prayer finished I felt peace come over me, like God was telling me he was content with my work and everything would be ok. Before we knelt down to bless the sacrament more investigators than I have ever had in this area showed up to church. It was an awesome and humbling experience that helped remind me no matter what I do, without the help of God I will never succeed. 

Other than that we found a few super great investigators and I went an entire week without eating chips to prove to my comp that I'm not addicted. A new investigator has a new BMW 7 series and he asked if I had a license and then offered to let me take it to San Salvador for changes Wednesday (probably the biggest temptation I've had on my mission haha) because he lived in California and said California drivers are the best. Wasted 2 hours fighting with a Jehovah witness because he offended my comp when my comp couldn't find a scripture and then we just let lose and attacked him with scriptures, ate some of the corn that we planted last change, and played a ton of soccer!

Overall another great week filled with blessings!

Super excited to see who comes into the zone this change!! Hope everyone has a great week!
Elder Davis

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Week 71 Day of the Dead

This week was awesome. We got an email Wednesday giving the details of what our mission president wanted for the Day of the Dead activity Sunday and yesterday. It was crazy getting everything together! For Day of the Dead everyone in this country goes to the cemeteries and visits the graves of their ancestors or family members that has died. Last year nearly all of us missionaries had nothing to do because nobody was in their houses to teach, so this year we decided to go where the people were.. the cemeteries.

We got permission from the government (most cemeteries here are owned by the gov.) but some bureaucratic dweeb told us we could only do it Sunday because Monday the cemetery gets to full... So my companion and I spent nearly an entire day in the town hall complaining to anyone who would listen... finally the mayor got to work and we told him if he loved Jesus and wanted any christian (the entire world here is christian) to vote for him ever again, he would let us do our activity. hahaha Maybe he didn't know all other churches pretty much hate us but he bought it and gave us permission to do the activity both days:) 

In the end we had stands all over all the cemeteries in San Miguel with tons of information about the plan of salvation and family history. It was a huge success and we had hundreds of references!! The spirit of Elijah touched the hearts of so many and we are so excited to start contacting a lot of these positive people! 

Great week that ended even better! 

Hope everyone is doing well

Elder Davis

Monday, October 26, 2015

Week 70 Border hopping and ticket dodging

This week was so great!! We had almost the entire week to work in our area, and the Lord blessed us so much for the efforts we gave!! We found some great people, droppeed some not so great people, and taught some really spiritual lessons. 

We also put a challange out to the zone for putting baptismal dates in November. If they completed it, they got to soak us (my comp and I and the district leaders) with water balloons while we sat in chairs unable to move. With that motivation we broke the zone record for baptisimal dates placed in a week and I got pegged by about 50 water balloons this morning.  hahaha Definitely worth it. 

Oh yeah, I also took a trip to Honduras.... accidently. We had to take a trip to La Union with the assistants to drop one of them off there. On the way back Elder Castro (who got his license a week ago) was driving... I was scared for my life because he does not know how to drive (they give a license to anyone here), but he refused to let me or my comp drive because he "needed to practice". Then he took another road that he thought was a shortcut... about 30 minutes down the road there was a permanent road block with soldiers stopping the cars, checking them and then letting them through. We got passed through and thought it was super wierd, but drove down the road for another 10 minutes before the elder would ask someone for directions. We asked someone if we were on the road for San Miguel and he busted up laughing saying we had just crossed the border into Honduras! hahaha On our way back we saw the big Honduras flag as we passed back into El Salvador and felt like idiots. But it was hilarious and super fun!! 

Overall a great week, super happy and pushing forward. 

Love Elder Davis

Monday, October 19, 2015

Week 69

Another great week has past. We had tons of time to work, and found some awesome people. My favorite part of the week was finding Robert. He is a 35ish year old guy who has been drinking and smoking for 15 years. We've visited him everyday since we found him on Tuesday and he now has 4 days without drinking and 3 without smoking. He came to church Sunday and is so animated to give up his vices and be baptized!! Such an awesome guy! 

Other than that, the most eventful thing that happened was Friday night we got a call from an area in the zone. They had gotten home, planned, and ate dinner, but when they went into there room to change there was graffiti all over the walls. Someone had jumped the wall and gotten into their house while they were out and tagged it up with gang stuff. They had already been threatened by a recent converts gang banger brother earlier in the week so they were freaking out. We got a member to pick them up that night and take them to another elders house. Then Saturday morning we went back to the house, had to take pics for evidence, and then spent all day (until 6:30 in the afternoon) searching for a new house for them to rent. We finally found one, spent another 30 minutes bargaining down the price into the mission budget and moved them in the same day. It was probably one of the most exhausting days of my mission, but after we finally got home late Saturday night, we just crashed on the hammocks and felt really good knowing the elders were safe and we were able to help them out a little. 

I think that's the best part of the mission, just having countless opportunities and sufficient time every day to serve others. Normal life is just too busy to dedicate everyday to serve others, but I'm loving and taking advantage of all the opportunities I can here. 

Overall we had a great week.  Hope everyone is doing well!

Elder Davis

Pics:  Cleaning the smell of death out of our ceiling and my water lucky charms (I chose to buy a jump rope instead of milk this week... not sure if I regret my decision or not haha)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Week 68

So on Tuesday I was sitting at my desk studying when I smelled this terrible stench. I asked my companion but he couldn't smell anything. We left to work and then that night I smelled it again. My comp said I was going crazy, but then everyday it got worse! Finally on Sunday after church, my comp admitted that it smelled horrible and we decided it was coming from the ceiling. 
After taking the mattresses off our bunk bed to use it as a ladder, I began to take apart our ceiling tiles (we have those white tiles like you would see in an office or school). After getting covered in ash and other unidentified powders, I got a flashlight up into the ceiling and found the poop of all the cats that had been living up there and a dead bird that somehow got caught in our ceiling. 

Right then we got a call to go to the hospital and give a blessing to a sister missionary before she went into surgery so we couldn't clean it until that night. When we finally got home our house smelled terrible. We spent all Sunday night cleaning out above our ceiling tiles and airing out out house... but that terrible smell of dead bird slowly getting cooked in ridiculous San Miguel heat, just won't go away. Today we bought a ton of sprays that will hopefully help. haha

Other than that it was a great week. We got time to get a little bit back into the missionary routine and got our area going decent again. Sunday we saw miracles in sacrament meeting. It was overall an awesome week.

Thanks for the emails and have a great week!

Elder Davis

Monday, October 5, 2015

Week 67 Another crazy week!

This week was once again crazy but fun and super inspirational. Tuesday my comp went around telling people goodbye, and as usual on such days, we got loaded up with food! 

Wednesday we headed out to San Salvador again for changes. It was an awesome change meeting. I got Elder Perdomo from Honduras as my companion. He is pretty old in the mission (goes home in February) but is still super animated for the work. So I'm really excited to work with him. 

Thursday we worked with all and were able to find a couple really good people.

Friday we had a multi-zone conference. It was super cool! I learned various things that I want to put in practice here in San Miguel. Our mission president really is inspired its so cool to see how he always knows what we need next! Then we met with the stake president and started planning a Day of the Dead activity to spread family history in the cemeteries. I'll have to write you to say how it goes. 

Saturday conference was amazing! A family of investigators showed up and loved it. I felt the answers to various questions I had be answered. 

Sunday once again was an amazing conference. I loved hearing from our prophet, a man who has truly given everything for the work. Then we had to emergency move some sisters in the zone because of some problems with gangsters. We got the assistants to bring the truck and my comp and another elder started loading it up while Elder Binkerhoff and I tried to convince this guy and his wife to let us move into the house that same day without any contract, money, guarantee or anything. After about 30 minutes of convincing him, he finally came through and we were able to get the sisters moved. 

Before we left we gave a blessing on the house. It was a super spiritual moment that I'll never forget. The power of the priesthood is so strong! 

These last weeks have been so insane but so full of spiritual experiences. Its amazing to see the Lords hand in this work. There are always trials, but I'm doing great and am happier than ever. 

Hope you all are doing well
Elder Davis

Monday, September 28, 2015

Week 66 Buses and Boots

This week has maybe been the busiest, but one of the coolest in my mission. It started out Monday when I finally bought some fat, ugly waterproof boots because I'm sick of walking around with soaking wet socks and shoes. haha

Tuesday we had leadership council in San Salvador, headed out at 4:00 am and spent pretty much all day traveling/in the meeting. The meeting was actually really cool though. President showed us a bunch of statistics and trends and then showed us a few new plans to keep having the work increase. Turns out up to this point in the year, out of the 18 missions in Central America, we have progressed the most from last year... We are doing things more the way the Lord wants them to be done and seeing the blessings come. 

Wednesday we attempted to do a weeks worth of work in one day. We verified with our new family and they are doing awesome! The Lord just kinda threw everything we needed in our path and we were able to get a lot done.

Thursday, we once again woke up at 3:00 am to head to San Salvador, but this time for a temple trip. The temple was amazing and just what I needed! The spirit was so strong there and it was just an awesome day. 

Friday, we once again woke up at 3 because my companion is training and we once again made the trip up to San Salvador and spent the entire day there. 

Saturday we spent all morning and well into the afternoon painting this members house. It was super fun and I may or may not be a professional painter now. haha

Overall it was a great week. Hopefully we will actually get to visit our investigators next week, but who knows. Wednesday my comp will be changed and I'll get a new comp. so I'm a little sad to lose Elder Kauvaka, but also excited to see who my new comp will be. Also I am super pumped for General Conference!!! Its going to be great! 

Love you guys, have a great week! 

Elder Davis

Monday, September 21, 2015

Week 65

This week so many things went wrong, but we are still happy and working hard. Baptismal dates fell, out of the 10 people who committed to go to church nobody came, our 3 most positive investigators all broke the word of wisdom and won't be able to be baptized for at least another month, a couple elders had to get sent home, and a million other things. 

Sunday afternoon I got back into my area (we were on divisions) and my comp and I were just down, but we said a prayer and said Satan was working hard but we were going to work harder. We went out and gave it our all Sunday, and at the end of the day went over our week. We made some goals of things we could do better, but realized that we had given it our all, and for whatever reason some things hadn't worked out. We said a prayer to finish our little weekly review and we both just felt peace and animated, knowing that we had given our all. It was an awesome manifestation of the spirit that I'll never forget. 

Other than that, this week was pretty normal. I got to work with the assistants one day, it was really awesome and I learned a lot. Ate a lot of spaghetti... that's pretty much all I can think of. 

Super happy to be here, hope everyone is doing great!
Elder Davis

Monday, September 14, 2015

Week 64 Not Quite Sure

Not quite sure what all happened this week, it seemed pretty normal. 

We went to give a blessing to a little girl in the hospital and after the blessing her uncle showed up at the moms request. The dad is a member (he is who called us) but the mom isn't. He brother (the uncle) is a "brujo" (wizard) and had shown up with chicken blood and a bag that I'm sure was full of other weird stuff to heal her. 

The dad told her we had blessed her by the power of God and he didn't want anything else done to her, but then the uncle began trying to argue with us on how he had healed (I don't know how many people) and all this nonsense. After explaining to him how he has no authority to do what he is doing and in a very kind way telling him to stop doing what he is doing and repent, he got mad and stormed out... Every once in a while you see witches of wizards here, but I've never actually talked to one so that was interesting. 

What else?? We found a family of 7! Only 2 of them are positive, but the assistants beat us in baptisms by a decent amount this month (we have a little competition going) and we are pretty sure this family can put us over the top in October if we focus on them having spiritual experiences every day, so we are really focusing on them right now. 

Actually we have a lot of good investigators, they just all have something that are keeping them from being baptized (smoking, drinking, work every Sunday, etc.) but we are hoping to do lots of divisions with members this week and have time to visit them all and help them get over their obstacles. 

Today for p-day we had a zone lunch. Everyone brought food from their countries and we had a big pot-luck. My comp and I did mashed potatoes with grilled cheese sandwiches. It was delicious!! Super fun activity. 

Overall things are going good, we ended up fasting yesterday and we saw some big blessings come from it. Fasting is such a powerful tool! 

We are happy, having fun and working hard.
Hope everyone there is doing great!
Elder Davis

P.S. I lifted up my bowl to make spaghetti a couple nights ago and these little buggers were below it

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Week 63 So Tired

I am exhausted. This week was super awesome, but exhausting. 

First off we got to do a ton of service again. I think the best was planting a corn field!! I could totally be a farmer now haha. The bad is the latest we woke up this week was 5:00 am :( I just want to sleep. haha

Wednesday we had interchanges to do the interview of Noe... our awesome investigator. At the age of 13 he was living on his own, and got into a gang because he had nothing else going for him and practically no other options. For the next few years of his life he fell down into pretty much any bad thing you can think of with little sign of hope. Then about 6 months ago he started living with a super inactive family. Although they themselves weren't super great about living the commandments, they helped him get out of all the serious gang stuff. 

My second week in this area we heard about this super inactive family and went to visit them. A few super spiritual lessons later they came to church, and the girlfriend made him go. He said the entire time he felt terrible in the church and just wanted to leave. Everyday the next week he spent a couple hours reading the Book of Mormon and praying. 

He told us he had never believed in God, and never had any desire to know anything else about religion,but when he started reading the Book of Mormon everything changed and he didn't want to stop reading. Since then he hasn't missed a Sunday in church, stopped smoking, drinking coffee, doing drugs, and this Saturday got married to the inactive lady who totally got activated with her entire family (of 7). He has gone through such an amazing repentance process and it has been super awesome to see and help guide him to the straight and narrow path. 

He may not be able to be baptized for a while for stuff in his past, and will have an interview with our mission president Friday to see, but it has been super cool seeing the atonement open up this guys life. 

We spent a good amount of our week preparing their wedding stuff, going off and getting birth certificates, a lawyer and all the other stuff. But it all turned out good (I think I could be a pretty boss wedding planner if I want some day. haha)

Other than that, we had a leadership conference Friday. Had to wake up at 2:30 to get there on time:( but it was super awesome. 

The weeks just keep flying by. It scares me how fast the time is going. 
The rain still hasn't stopped since Elder Ochoas blessing. Every single night we get soaked, but it is better than the heat. 

Love you guys, 

Elder Davis

check out my cool new scripture case

Monday, August 31, 2015

Week 62 Shaking hands with the big man

So this week was the best! We got to do a ton of service: cleaning up planters in a local school, cutting down a huge mango tree with machetes, sweeping up 10 million leaves into plastic bags, etc. It always feels so good to go out and work a little bit and help people out. 

But the best day of the week was by far Friday. We woke up at 3 am to be in the temple chapel at 7 for the multi mission meeting with President (Russel M.) Nelson. It was crazy. Our bus driver ended up getting lost and we didn't get there until 9:15 and missed the first 15 minutes of the meeting but it wasn't that big of a deal because we still heard Pres. Nelson speak. He taught us a ton of things, but it was just awesome seeing him. He was so happy and lively and just looked like he was happy to be part of this great work. He took the time to shake the hands of over 500 of us missionaries and it was just super awesome. I learned a ton. 

Saturday we went to a couple of quick appointments and then had to go to the stake center all afternoon which would have been boring, but Elder Ochoa of the 70 was leading the meeting which made it cool. Afterwards he totally walked up and told me and my comp hi and talked to us for a minute. We tried to play it cool, like no big deal, but I'm pretty sure we were more excited than little kids Christmas morning. haha

Sunday we had stake conference and it was huge!! The chapel and gym were full and they had to put up canopies outside and project a video of it because so many people were crammed into the stake center. They re-organized our stake and changed the "district" Usulutan into a stake. It was super exciting to see just how big the church is growing here. Our new stake president is actually the mission doctor, which is awesome because we are already good friends from my time in the hospital. haha So we are super excited to start working more with him. 

To finish off the conference Elder Ochoa gave a blessing to everyone. At the end of the blessing he blesseed San Miguel with rain. We have been without rain for a long time. Everyone lost there crops because there hasn't been any rain, and the forecast showed no signs of rain... but last night out of nowhere a huge storm rolled in and it began to rain. Super awesome to see the power of the priesthood at work. 

Everything is going well, hope for you guys too!

Love Elder Davis

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Week 61 I've got connections....

So this week a bunch of stuff happened, but the funniest day was friday. So we have been doing our own laundry this change (washing by hand every night in the pila) but there is this super poor but powerful recent convert family who we decided to pay to wash for us... then they can use the money to catch the bus to church and not have to walk for 45 minutes. 

So friday morning at about 6 we were waiting on the side of the road for the bus to come by so we could take the clothes for them to wash. A car going the other dirtection kinda slows down as it passes by us and the guy starts staring us down. He then pulls a u-turn and stops right in front of us and asks if we want a ride. We told him we were fine, but he insisted and my comp had forgot his bus money and we didn't want to go back to the house so we said whatever and got in. As we get driving he begins turns on some music and then says, " Oh wait you are Christians you can't listen to this stuff" and turns it off. He started asking us about our mission and such and then says ok, I'm going to be honest... I'm gay, and I just have to tell you (looking at me) have a perfect face and you (looking at my companion) have eyelashes of the gods!!! He then kept complimenting us and it got super awkward hahahaha

So then he begins telling us all about his business. It is this huge event business that I've actually heard of before and he is the owner of the whole thing. He told us about all the connections he has with mayors, political figures and all the "powerful and important people of El Salvador". Then he tells us he is having a birthday party in a few weeks and it will be covered by 3 TV stations and tons of important people will be there and he wants us as his honored guests to be there!! He gave us his number and said anything we want whenever we want it he will drop his work and take us anywhere, invite us to eat anywhere or to know anyone etc. hahaha.  It was so bizarre and awkward because the entire time he was saying how handsome we were. 

So we were weirded out when he let us out of the car, and that night we told some members about it. They were amazed. Turns out the guy wasn't bragging -he really is one of the most connected people in the country.  haha The birthday party he wants us to go to is a super exclusive party he throws every year where only famous/important people from the country go.  hahaha They even showed us a picture of the mayor in the newspaper with that guy standing right by him. 

So pretty much this week we got the weirdest/ biggest connection in
El Salvador. We haven't decided if we will ever call the guy up or not. But who knows. hahahaha

Other than that is was a fun but busy week. We are super pumped because 
Russel M. Nelson is coming out on Friday!!! We are going to meet him in the chapel in San Salvador!!! and word on the street is he might even show up at our stake conference this weekend! Super excited. Should be a great week!!

Love you guys

Elder Davis

one of the lizards we got

 pics of the slip-n-slide water balloon marsh mellow p-day we had today!

Monday, August 17, 2015

week 60

This week was once again insane. We spent almost no time in our area and were just running around like chickens with our heads cut off.  haha

It started out Tuesday when another elder had to come stay and work with us for a day. It was weird being in a trio. Kinda fun, but I'm glad I've never been in one. Wednesday morning we got him to his new area and then within an hour had him back in our house along with 2 other elders because of the volcano. 

So the Volcano is called volcano Chaparrastique and I am in the area Chaparrastique (just to give you an idea of how close we are to it) and Wednesday morning it started pumping out a bunch of smoke /ash stuff) Everyone started freaking out, and then we had to follow the emergency plan and make sure everyone got to there evacuation points with their 72 hour kits. We then called up bus drivers to take all the missionaries to San Salvador if it became necessary, but in the end nothing else happened:( I wanted to see lava in the streets and stuff, but I guess its better that way. 

We learned from the experience that nobody in the mission has a real 72 hour kit and we would all pretty much die if we couldn't go to the store every day. My companion and I put together our kit with one cup of noodles, a half eaten loaf of bread and one bag of water.  haha It could have lasted us all of one meal if we had actually needed it... so hopefully we get a little better prepared for if something really does happen. 

What else... We had a cool meeting with the mission president and stake president.  The stake plan is really showing a lot of fruits so we are really happy about that.

Oh yeah, Monday we went lizard hunting with this crazy awesome guy in my ward. We got 1 iguana and 1 garabo. They were extremely delicious and I am getting pretty decent with my sling shot. 

That's pretty much all I can think of. My comp and I won't have changes so we are cool. I'll be here for at least 6 more weeks. 

Love you guys.  Have a great week

Elder Davis

Monday, August 10, 2015

Week 59 Time Flies

I feel like yesterday it was Monday... the weeks go by way to fast!

This week was great but super busy. Monday was relaxed and we went to Papa Johns for all you can eat pizza. It was delicious and we ate so much, super fun. 

Tuesday we had to take a couple elders in for emergency changes and then ran around getting buses organized for the trip to the temple Thursday. We found and contracted 4 buses to take all the investigators and missionaries in San Miguel  to San Salvador (a 3.5 hour bus ride) and bargained with latinos for about an hour to get the price within the budget they gave us. 
Then got home that night and began planning the zone conference for the next day.  It was a late but super awesome and spiritual night. 

Wednesday we started out with the zone conference. It went pretty good. Everyone participated and we have some great new plans and goals as a zone! Then we ran around inviting and verifying all of our investigators and inactives for the temple trip the next day. 

Thursday we woke up early and headed out for San Salvador. In our area we got 35 people to go. We all met up, mingled around the temple grounds and then went to the temple chapel for a tour. Missionaries were dressed up as Book of Mormon and bible characters and teaching principles of the gospel. Then in the cultural center there was a virtual tour of the inside of the temple and our mission president explained the purpose of the different rooms and ceremonies. It was awesome and afterwards an investigator couple told us they were going to begin trying a lot harder to keep the word of wisdom because in 1 year they want to be sealed to there kids!! Everyone had a super spiritual and fun day! 

There at the temple I saw some converts and people who I had taught in other areas who ended up getting baptized. It was so cool seeing them!

Thursday we caught up on all the work we had missed out on earlier in the week. 

Friday we did divisions and were able to have 2 baptismal interviews. And then ran around town looking for a lawyer to marry those getting baptized because the one that was going to marry them died Thursday night:(  We finally got a lawyer who could do it last minute and everything turned out good. 

Saturday we ran to Santa Rosa (a city like an hour from here) to take care of a little issue and then ran around having some super awesome lessons. The Lord has blessed us with some great people who want to get baptized and are progressing really strongly. 

So that was pretty much my week. My comp and I are doing good. Having lots of great experiences. 

Thanks for all your letters and prayers. Hope everyone is doing well.

Elder Davis 

Monday, August 3, 2015

Week 58

This was a week of running around getting stuff done. 

Monday we spent 3 hours cleaning the house... it was disgusting but we finally got it done, it was a great accomplishment. 

Then we were left with $5 dollars in total between us both for the week. We lived off of plain spaghetti noodles and sweet bread all week, haha but we made it though and it definitely helped out that it was fast Sunday and didn't have to eat the majority of Saturday and Sunday. haha Today we finally got our money sent to us:)

Tuesday we were sitting at lunch at our cooks house and we saw a selfie stick (for camera) sitting on the couch. She saw we liked it and pulled another out of her bedroom and gave us both selfie sticks!! All week we ran around taking ridiculously stupid selfies with our super awesome sticks. hahaha

Wednesday a member hooked us up with slingshots. They are actually illegal to use here, but legal to buy... I guess in the war here when they didn't have money, they used to use slingshots and they got named as weapons for that... but nobody follows that law. We have become expert marksmen and are going lizard hunting with the member who gave it to us next week! 

We were walking around shooting things on this super long and empty road on the way to a members house when I saw a chicken super far out. ]I didn't think I would hit it from so far away, but I launched a rock anyways and I nailed it and broke its leg. haha The poor chicken's leg was totally bent backwards and we just ran away fast:)

Thursday we had to settle an argument for 3 hours over area boundaries between 2 wards and the missionaries in the wards...but now its finally settled at least. 

Friday we went into San Salvador for leadership counsel. It was really cool. The zone leaders and assistants met up with president at his house and we pretty much just sat down, talked about concerns and new ideas and I learned a lot from other people and president inspired us as usual. 

We've been pretty much working with the thought if people are happy they have success so we just pretty much try and do fun stuff as a zone and its been working pretty well. Everyone has improved a lot and we are super happy for the blessings. 

That was pretty much our week. Hope you guys had a good one as well.
Love Elder Davis

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Week 57

We had a great week this week! 

Monday we organized a zone activity to head out to La Unión and had tons of fun going around this beach town. We grew a lot closer as a zone and now everyone is comfortable around each other and we are all good friends. 

Tuesday I went over to the area Oriental 2 on divisions with Elder Coc. (a missionary who has about 3 weeks left in his mission.) It was really cool- I was able to have 2 awesome baptismal interviews and then go out and work with him all day. Although he is ready to go home, he is still an awesome elder (highest baptizer in the mission right now) and I learned a lot about being direct with the people from him. Then we finished off the day sleeping in his air conditioned house! It felt like I was in heaven with that cool air blowing in!!

Wednesday and Thursday we had 2 normal days of work and found some good new people. We have some good investigators right now, but they all have little problems like not being able to give up drinking, having to work Sundays, etc. so we are trying to find some new people to baptize in September. 

Friday the asistants to the president wanted to do divisions with us and one of them insisted that they wanted to see how I work in my own area. I was a little nervous because I thought I barley knew the area, but in the end we only ended up getting lost once:) Overall it was a really good day!

Saturday was insane! We ended the divisions with the assistants at 6:30 am and then a million things had to get done. Then the stake president calls us and tells us he will be at our house in 15 minutes and he wants us to meet his grandson. He shows up and we go outside to meet him, but then he just invited himself and his grandson into our house. He looks at me and my companion and says that he wants us to teach his grandson the gospel and then help him with english homework. So we taught him a lesson and it all went well, but then all the missionaries in the zone started showing up for all the things they needed from us and the stake president just kept inviting everyone into our house. Pretty soon we had 14 people in our tiny house and we were running around trying to get them all what they need while doing English homework and answering all the stake presidents questions about the plan we had presented to him last week. It was a madhouse. haha 

We finally got everyone out and then we had to run to the bus stop and take an hour and a half bus ride to get baptismal clothes that some elders would need the next day. We got back just in time to got to our correlation meeting with our ward mission leader, eat a quick dinner from the young single adults fundraiser and go home for the night. 

Sunday morning the bishop called asking if Icould give a talk. I think it went well despite the 15 minute heads up haha. After church and lunch we went out to work and decided to head to a decently far away part of our area. We got into our first investigators house and before we sat down the stake president was calling us yet again. He told us he wanted us in a meeting with all the bishoprics in 20 minutes in the stake center. Once again we ran to the bus stop and got to the meeting a little late... we felt dumb because everyone was already sitting down waiting for us, but he could have given us a bigger heads up. That meeting took up pretty much the entire afternoon and we ended up only getting in 1 lesson Sunday, but it was still a good day. 

Overall it was a crazy week, but we had fun the entire time. I'm getting along great with my comp. We are constantly laughing and learning and quoting movies, etc. 

Everything is going awesome! Hope you guys are doing great. Thanks for everything. 
Elder Davis

Week 56 Slow and Steady

We had a great week this week! 

Monday and Tuesday I wasn't permitted to leave the house, but Wednesday I got half a day of work in. Then Thursday we had a super sick Multi-zone meeting! 

It was so awesome and spiritual! We learned a ton and already have seen the fruits of putting what we learned in practice. My mission president is the best! He brings such a strong spirit and is turning everything around in this mission. Everyone is increasing their faith and so far as a mission we have had almost double the baptisms that we had by this point last year. It is awesome to see how the Lord is pushing his work forward. 

Then we went to a meeting with the stake president and our mission president. We presented new plans to focus the stake on preforming priesthood ordinances. We based everything on D&C 84: 19-22 and talked about how important it is to use the priesthood that has been restored. What good does it do to hold this authority from God if we never use it? We are now collecting reports weekly from every ward to see what ordinances they did in their ward that week and if they are truly magnifying the priesthood God has given to us... It's super awesome and everyone is excited for it. The goal is that more fathers will give blessings to their children and wives, more members will work in missionary work with the goal of baptizing their own friends and families, and increasing the number of people taking the sacrament every week. We are super excited, and think this will help our stake grow!

Friday we headed out super early to San Salvador to get my visa updated. Then we got Taco Bell!!! Oh it was so delicious! It was kinda funny because someone was having a baby shower in Taco Bell. haha  Then we headed home and got to work. It was my first complete day working and it felt awesome! We got a lot done and Friday and Saturday and I feel so much better getting out and actually doing something. Since Thursday my health hasn't given me any problems and I feel awesome! 

Sunday was awesome! Probably the most special part of my week was Sunday night. We finally were able to go and visit the Bishop. I got to know him and his family and at the end of the visit we asked him to give us blessings. It was a really neat experience. Even though he barley knows me, he gave me a super spiritual, very personal blessing. It was just what I needed and we felt the spirit so strong as he gave it. 

Overall it was an awesome week! I'm having tons of fun with my comp- just making jokes, singing songs, and quoting movies! 
Hope you are all doing great.
Love Elder Davis

Week 55 Interesting Week

So this week was real interesting.... 

To explain I'm going to have to jump back a bit though. So last Sunday after church I felt terrible. I wasn't able to go out to work. Monday I made it to the stake center, wrote home and then slept. Tuesday I went to get some exams done in a clinic in Jiquilisco and everything looked OK, but I still felt terrible and hardly got out of bed all day. My companion actually helped me out a ton and packed for me because I wasn't physically up to it. Wednesday I got the zone leaders to send the bus right in front of my house to go to San Salvador for the changes meeting. We loaded up the bags and headed out. It stunk because I wasn't able to say goodbye to anyone in my old area, but I was excited for the changes. 

So at the change meeting I got to say hi and goodbye to some really good friends, so that was awesome.  I got assigned to go to San Miguel with Elder Kauvaka as a zone leader. So that was awesome. I was really pumped because Elder Kauvaka and I are already good friends and he is an awesome elder, so I think this will be an awesome change!!  

Then we loaded up the bus and started the 3 and a half hour bus ride back to San Miguel. On the bus I tried to get to know the missionaries in my zone a little, but then almost passed out and decided it was time to sit down. We got to the stake center and I couldn't walk to the house so we got a taxi and I just went inside and crashed for 2 hours. Then I woke up and vomited uncontrollably for about 20 minutes and decided it was time to call the doctor. We met the doctor in the hospital (side note: the Lord is so smart. He sent me to the area that has the best hospital on this side of the country 2 minutes from my house! Got to love revelation) and the minute he saw me, he told me I wasn't leaving that night. I had yellow eyes and yellow skin on top of like 10 other symptoms so things were pretty bad. 

The doctor started signing me up for a ton of tests and not everything turned out good and to make a long story short I spent Wednesday afternoon until Sunday afternoon in the hospital:) 
But it wasn't all bad- some funny things happened that left my comp and I cracking up...

Funny hospital stories:
1. The night nurses are inept and dropped my IV like 4 times
2. We tried teaching a gay nurse the first lesson
3. They left a brand new nurse to give me shots one day and she literally read the instructions off the package of the syringe to give them to me 
4. At one point I had 2 IV's coming out of both hands (4 in total), the machine for one of them kept beeping like crazy but the doctor wasn't there and the nurses didn't know what to do so they just kept pressing the "silence" button. I fell asleep and woke up an hour later with my hand the size of an elephant! All the fluids they thought they were pumping through my veins were just in my hand... that felt just amazing... but turned out for some funny pics (on my comps camera-  I'll send them next week) 

So yeah... a lot more stuff went down but I can't remember everything right now. 

I basically feel good right now. I am on a ton of meds and am not allowed to work for a few more days but I am doing a ton better. Super pumped to be in this area and zone! My comp and I have so many ideas we passed back and forth while in the hospital and we are just super pumped to get working! Cant wait to get back on the street!! 

Thanks for everything. Hope you have a great week!  
love Elder Davis