Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Transfers! Onto My Next Area

Hello everyone! So this week has been, well, different for sure for me. Last Monday I received a phone call from Presidente Velez that he's closing our area with this transfer. So Elder Uicab and I have had our hands full this whole week, making arrangements for our area so that the other missionaries who'll assume responsibility for our area will have a smooth transition. Also, we made a trip to the hospital for my companion this week, so yeah, this week has been a bit stressful.

So here's the rundown for the past week:

Tuesday, we had our weekly district meeting, then we returned to the house when my companion wasn't feeling good. After a few hours of rest, we decided to go to the hospital. So my Tuesday evening was spent in the hospital. My companion got dehydrated and ate something bad so he had a stomach infection. We didn't get home until about 11pm.

Wednesday, we spent in the house. My companion didn't have energy and still felt bad so we couldn't leave the house. I studied my scriptures for several hours as he slept.

Thursday, the morning was spent in the house. But around lunch time, we managed to make it out of the house to slowly get to work. We had our weekly ward mission meeting as well.

Friday, we planned for the upcoming week even though we aren't going to be here. The planning was for the next missionaries, so that they'll know what to do with the people we're teaching. We cleaned the house, we began packing our belongings, and we passed by our investigators to let them know that we're leaving and what's going on.

Saturday, we were busy cleaning the house and putting everything in order for Monday. We didn't do much else, only a few lessons while we were advising our investigators and some members that we are leaving the area.

Sunday, we had stake conference in the morning. We ate lunch, and then we kept cleaning and packing stuff up. We had a few more lessons, but not too much else happened. It was hard to find people to teach because of Valentine's Day.

As for transfers, I've been called to serve as secretary of materials in the mission offices. I'll be here for about 6 months, I believe, and everyday I'll be at my computer working until lunchtime. After lunch, I'll leave the offices with my companion, and we'll go to work like normal, preaching and teaching in downtown Culiacan. My Preparation Day will now be SATURDAY, and I do have access to a washer machine and hot water for my showers. My companion is Elder Garcia, who is another secretary in the offices, Executive Secretary.

Talk to you all next week, I'll let you all know how it's going in the new area and with the new companion! Make good choices! 

Elder Finkner

Monday, February 8, 2016

Pics 2/8/16

After playing volleyball and soccer with the majority of the zone at church.
Learning how to make flan!
And he finished the flan successfully!
Our Elder is very proud of his newest creation.

Teaching People

Hello everyone! I'm doing well, I'm busy, and I work hard. My companion and I are working really well together, we teach efficiently and so we teach a lot of lessons. An average amount of lessons in a week per companionship is about 20, but Elder Uicab and I are teaching about 35-40 lessons per week. Our numbers are the best in the zone. We're having a lot of success. But... no baptisms. I won't be able to baptize this transfer, we had one slated for Feb 13th, but it got pushed back a week, when transfers are Feb 15th. I'm pretty sure this upcoming week is my last in this area, then I feel like I'm getting sent to the Baja California. Or I might stay in Culiacan, but I don't think I'm going to Mazatlan. So, onto the weekly update.

Tuesday, weekly district meeting, and then I made flan! A sister in the ward taught me how to make flan, so I have the recipe now. And it turned out really good! Then later that evening I bought a pizza for my companion and I, and the Fam. Medina. We also taught some lessons.

Wednesday, we walked about 30 minutes to our lunch appointment. Wednesdays and Thursdays we have lunch really far away, almost outside of Culiacan, at the bottom of a mountain. We visited Candelario, who is going to be baptized on Feb. 20th.

Thursday, we were busy all day with lessons and appointments. We walked so much underneath the brutal Culiacan sun. My face got a little burnt and my feet hurt and I was drained. Nothing too crazy, just staying busy and being a missionary.

Friday, was a little bit slower, we still stayed busy although some appointments fell through. I don't know how, but we always manage to find something to do when all else fails. We taught the Fam. Burgueños about the Book of Mormon, they already have testimonies of the Church, they just need to go to church before their baptism.

Saturday, another slow day, we ate breakfast with a less-active family, but we taught a lot of lessons and walked a lot, looking to teach investigators for their first time. We got a sad text message, that the Fam. Lopez Madrid won't receive us for a while. We finished the week with 38 lessons. It's a high score for me and my companion in our missions.

Sunday, we had church, I was disappointed that none of our investigators or less-active families didn't come to church, even though they committed to coming. We offer rides, we offer to walk with them to church, but it's frustrating when people use their free agency to pass on making good choices. I'm learning a lot about how Heavenly Father must feel about me when I don't make good decisions, even when I know what's right and what's wrong.

So yeah, that's it for this week. Make good choices! Study your scriptures! Pray often! Go to Church!! Love you all!

Elder Finkner

Monday, February 1, 2016

Pics 2/1

Superman and chill.
Enchiladas...que sabrosa!
Alejandro cooking scrambled eggs and with chorizo for breakfast!

Some of the area where Elder Finkner is serving.
Cutting firewood with a machete!

4 Months Down, 20 To Go

Well hello everyone! Hope everyone is doing well! This past week was pretty good for me, I hit my 4 month mark and today is February! Seems just like yesterday I arrived to Culiacan and started my mission. Also, I finished the Book of Mormon in Spanish for the first time on Jan. 30th, 2016. My testimony of the Book of Mormon has grown so much over the last 4 months, and I know that it is the word of God. The Book of Mormon is the most correct book on the earth, and through the Book of Mormon, we can learn more about faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end. Now that I've finished the Book of Mormon in Spanish, I'm going to restart from the beginning, but also at the same time I'll be reading the New Testament. I invite everyone who hasn't read or isn't reading the Book of Mormon to pick it up, start reading, and pray about the truthfulness and the divinity of this book. I know that Heavenly Father answers prayers, for He has answered mine. I also invite you all to read Moroni 10:3-5, ponder in your hearts the meaning of the Book of Mormon, and I know that by the power of the Holy Ghost, you'll receive your answers.

Anyways, I'll give my brief summary of this past week:

Tuesday, weekly district meeting, a few lessons, and we put 3 baptism dates for Rafael, Xochitl, and Jessica for March 6th, and we finished the night teaching a few more lessons.

Wednesday, we walked about 30 minutes to some communities that are separated from Culiacan. These communites are part of our area, but since they're so far out, we rarely have the time to go all the way out there. We're starting to visit this part of our area once a week, there isn't much work, but hopefully we can get things working in this part of the Lord's vineyard. We went to visit Candelario in his little farm, and we were cutting some firewood for him with machetes haha. I was really tired after this day, we walked close to 10-12 miles overall.

Thursday, we had some lessons, but it was somewhat slow this day.

Friday, we had our weekly planning session, we taught some lessons, and we were working on updating our area map. We're trying to locate every single inactive member that we have on our lists of members.

Saturday, well the morning was really slow, a lot of families left town this weekend. We worked hard to find people to teach, and we taught a few lessons.

Sunday, we had church, then we walked the long trek home, sweating in our suits haha. After lunch, we got to work, but our appointments fell through and again, not many people were home. So we worked on our map project. We taught a few lessons today. 

Somehow, my companion and I managed to achieve our goal of 35 lessons this past week. The level of excellence in the mission is 30 lessons a week. So two weeks ago, we had like 32, this week we had 36. My companion and I are working hard and trying to stay diligent to teach as many people as possible. Either today or tomorrow, my companion and I are going to learn how to make flan from a sister in the church. So yeah, that's about it for this week. I'm doing well, the people offer us water, fruits, and meals almost all the time. I love Culiacan and the people here.

Stay classy, Baltimore!
Elder Finkner