Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Talk to You Very Soon


Hey Mom I am going to keep this relatively short, so I have a lot more to say on Christmas. So I am sending a Christmas package home today! I hope it gets there by Christmas. I will call Christmas Eve to let you know when I will be calling for just a minute. Uhm invite my friends to come over. I will actually have little gifts and cards in the package for them. So if they want them they need to come get them lol! I just did not feel like sending out 5 differnt packages. It's just small stuff so just tell them on facebook.  They each have something. So let them know. Call them or something and let them know. And what else... Oh yeah Melissa will not be able to make it :( It sounds like we don't really have restricitons of phone calls so I will probably just be giving her a call. And I wil be able to talk to you all for a long time :)

 ... Oh before I forget - Elder Wilkey! He is related to Bladen!! He is Whitney (His wife's) cousin! Haha how cool is that! We talked about it for like a good hour lol Small world! I forgot Brandon told me that Whitney had a cousin in the same mission. Crazy right?? Don't tell him! Elder Wilkey is going to call them on Sunday and I am going to talk to him for a moment! Well Tell Nicole I am happy for her! And that is so exciting! I hope you all have a great Christmas! I am excited to talk to you all! :) You seriously have no idea! Make sure Greg has a good day! It's his first Christmas home! Seriously! Ahh.. I wish I could be home. Just for Christmas! Well I will give a quick ring on Saturday! Well I love you all so much! 

Love Mark! 

Talk to you all very soon! :) 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

First Week in the Bronx

Hello Everyone! Happy Hanukkah! :) 

So what's up? How is everything going this week? So The Bronx! Well it's the Bronx lol! Awesome place, so far -not Harlem though! We are having a little trouble getting the area started! I love my companion Elder Wilkey! Such a fun and awesome kid! We get along and can talk for hours! I get along with him, probably better than the rest of my comps so far! Such a fun loving kid. Only problem he is a little hard to get out the door. We are going to pick it up! I could really see that last night. He just needs someone to tell him "kay lets go!". But he is a way good missionary. So good with people! Very personable and loving! And just hilarious! He reminds me of my friends back home! And makes me miss them! So right now, really our only investigator that I have met is an older man named Jerry. Very nice/humble fellow he is! lol! But he is going to Florida for 6 months this weekend, so yeah. We are working from the ground up but I know we can do it. Plus on top of all that we do not know very many of the members. And his Spanish is not the best, and neither is mine lol! But I have been leading a lot, and he is the senior comp.  He is such a peoples person! But I think this is going to be a great way for us to learn! I am excited! We have already had a ton of laughs/good times together! :)

So I don't know if I told you last week, but Elder Kay is my District Leader and Elder Huerta is in my District. He has two more cycles so I will have ended up spending half of my mission by him when he leaves lol! So I am excited for that! Your relationship with someone is so much different when you are their companion. You have to make decisions together and be with each other 24/7. You just see it from another perspective when you take a step back and observe what it is that you are looking at. But most of the people here are Dominican! And I love Dominicans so it's going to be good.. Before my mission, I had no idea what or who they even were lol! I just thought all Spanish people were Mexican lol! (not really) Now I know better lol! Just never thought that I would meet black people who speak Spanish.. Well if you can call it Spanish. Half the time it sounds like rocks hitting cement lol! But it's fun to imitate and speak like them! Not your typical Spanish. 

So this cycle is goign to be good! Some Christmas miracles are going to be comign soon! I can feel that! And I know that! The Lord will bless us! This is his work, and I love what I am doing, and am so excited to fall in love with the people here! I am going to love it! My attitude this week is much better about the situation than it was last week! i have an awesome district and an amazing zone! It just feels right now! Looking back at last cycle in Harlem, it really was time for me to leave and move on. And move to the next stage in my mission and find those people here who are ready to accept the gospel! I am excited to see more come into it! Its true happiness! That is Christ! That is his nature! To make one happy! And what makes one happy? Love! Pure love! and that is the Gospel! That is the Atonement! That is the sacrifice and divine mercy of Christ! :) 

So today we went to Harlem today so I could go around and buy some things for Christmas! That city! That island and the people there mean so much to me! New York City means something completely different to me, then what it means to the 6 Billion other people in this world. The people there, are not the people the world believes them to be. It is not the place that the media and TV shows, and movies, and magazines tell us it is. It is a place where love is found and where good things happen. Yes there is a lot of bad. But the good shines through it! Just as the Lord promises it always will! We just have to be looking for it! I love the people on that small island! and I miss them! And that city, those people hold a special place in my heart that will never be taken away! I went back today and it just felt like home! It was nice! :) It was my first area in the mission, and I am excited to see what it prepared me for! :)} 

So yes mom I got the package - thank you so much! :) I started opening gifts yesterday! :) I got the CD and the stocking full of candy and toys! Thank you so much! :) I will be sending home Greg's gifts, and the small gifts I got for you all very soon! :) I am excited to call on Christmas as well! That I think will be the best gift of all! Is talking to my family! Well, that and celebrating and remembering the real meaning of Christmas! I read a talk in the Christmas Ensign today... I don't remember who it was by. But it talked about the Birth of Christ and the Atonement! It was so good! I just loved it! My goal this Christmas is to learn who Christ really is! 

So the Bronx is crazy! Bunch of drunks and poor people just like Harlem. But just like Harlem, it has the good! It's going to be tight getting to say I lived in the Bronx and in Harlem after I get home! haha! Not very many people can say that! and it actually means something! But yeah! 

So tell Aimee I said congrats about school! Good for her! I am happy for her! I have a letter for her and Stella! But I dont have their addresses if you could send them that would be awesome! :) And tell Trevor I say Hi! and g2ive him a huge hug for me! I miss that kid! I was just thinking about him the other day! 

So crazy to think Mckeon left a year ago! :( Miss him! But I am happy for him! :) Stinks he moved ya know?? :( But oh well! :) lol! I was just telling Elder Wilkey last night that it was about a year ago that I got my call! So weird! Remember it like it was yesterday! That was unforgettable for me and Jackson! Such a good night! 

Oh yeah, you and Dad both asked.. So yes we mostly tract here lol! Funny there is a Book of Mormon ad that says "Doorbells ring are you listening?" It's Christmas themed lol! I think it is funny!  But yeah like I said we don't really know a lot of the members yet. Wilkey has been here for 2 cycles but his former companion had a small group of members they visited. But a normal day..

6:30 punch my Alarm clock.
6:31-7 Tire myself out even more than what I already am  by working out with Elder Kroph (We live with Elder Kroph and Peterson. Elder Peterson came out with me. Kroph is from New Mexico. Peterson is from Snowflake Arizona)

7-8 Drink Protein shake, stuff my face (If we are lucky and have food) Wait for showers... Waiting continued... A little more. Okay now like 5 minute shower after everone else takes forever. During the waiting try to clean up the apartment a little. MOM I wash dishes! Amazing right???? We don't have a dishwasher either!! You won't believe it!
8-9 Try not to fall asleep while studying. Haha right now I am reading The Book of Mormon. And also reading a talk out of the Ensign each day. I am hoping to finish the Book of Mormon by Christmas. Then I want to read the New Testament. And Preach my Gospel after that. (most likely during companion study. Followed by the Book of Mormon in Spanish. And eventually the Old Testament. We will see what happens lol! 

9-10 companion study. Sing as an apartment, pray, read the White handbook. 5 pages. then share what we learned in Personal study. Then prepare lessons for the day and what and who we will teach. Go over plans from nigh before.

10-11. Language study- if we are lucky enough to get to it! :/ Seems like we never really do. Elder Wilkey and I decided we are going to make time for it! 

11-12 lunch! if we have any. By this point I am starving. If not we go out and get some :) 

12- all day! Teach lessons, teach of Christ! Contact and knock doors! Sometimes with other random things in between like we do things called blitzes were our Zone comes together and we focus on 1 missionary area and we all knock doors or contact people in that area. Then we have service too once a week! In Harlem we worked at a food shelter! That was fun! They would give us a bag of food to take home! They loved the missionaries! (Speaking of which a guy gave me a 5 dollar discount today because I was with the church when I was buying Greg his presents Gotta love people! They are too nice! :) ) But here we help at an old folks home and serve lunches and play pool with the old men! It's a neat thing we got going on! Oh and they feed us lunch! :) Then we also have Baptisms and other activites and meetings with the Ward/mission. It's all fun stuff! :) But I love teaching! It's fun! And more than that I think I just love getting to know people and finding out how the Gospel will help them! 

9-9:30 come home, plan... and play Bang! Or watch a church movie eat some more. write in my journal (or during personal study) Hang out, talk and then hit the hay at 10:30 And Elder Wilkey and I will talk for a little bit and then have good dreams! :) And Thats pretty much a day of my life in a nutshell.

Well that's about all I got for today! Actually no! Mom send me my Bank of America card when it arrives at home! I had to send it back home before I could get it! So please do that ASAP! Thanks so much! And also if you could get a cord to fix the N64 that would also be great... And the Hockey net... Please... Well I love you all! :) Take care and have a good week! Merry Christmas! :) 

Love, your crazy Son, brother, and Friend Mark! :) 

PS.. No I did not hear about freaking Pujols... that ticks me off... Ah! Domincans... lol! J.K. He is a good guy whatever reasons he did it for I am sure were the right ones! Love you all! 

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Moving to the Bronx


Hello everyone! So I am out :( I am way sad! I will probably keep this email really short because I was up really late packing after saying bye to a ton of people! I am sad, but happy! Elder Huerta Luna (his trainer) is in my District again! And Elder Kay (from the MTC) is my DL so in that regards it is good! Also my new companion Elder Wilki seems way cool! I can already tell we are going to get along! But yes I got the tree and the Package! Thank you so much! It means a lot! So tell everyone for now to just send mail to the mission office until I get you all the new address in the Bronx. I am serving in South Bronx. So yeah I am excited it will be a nice change I think! :)

But I will miss Harlem :( Haha I gave Hermana Munoz your number mom and she said she might call you lol! I was way emotional when I left. I was there for so long. And it was my first area. I think I cried everywhere I went lol! I just seriously love those people so much! I will tell you guys more when Icall this month! But yeah.. I was sad. When I heard Elder Torres say we were getting whitewashed  (having both missionaries leave) I thought he was joking.. But then he said seriously.. and I just went and cried.. I thought for sure I would be there for 1 more. President basically promised me.. But God's will will be done! And I felt comfortable with it. I have made so many friends there. Life long friends. I did not think it was possible to grow to love so many people in so little time. I was and am way sad. But excited for what is up ahead and who I will meet and who else I will get to spend time with, and grow and learn from them.
I learned and felt my testimony grow so much in the past 7 months. I have changed as a person for the better that is for sure! Elder Hellberg helped me get over the change and now all is running smoothly as it should. New York, and especially Manhattan holds a special place in my heart. The lights, the city, the noise, and especially the people I have grown to love! They are amazing! This city is amazing! I believe I look at New York 1000 times different than the majority of the world does! This truly is the greatest place on earth!
So Elder Hellberg just left! I gave him a hug and will see him soon! He is going to come back for when Angie and Anthony are sealed! So Anthony's Baptism was great! Elder Hellberg baptized him.. and I confirmed him a member of the Church! Talk about stressful.. But seriously the gift of tongues and guidance of the Holy Ghost are real. I felt them! It was an awesome experience! :) Crazy week this week! Really eventful. went from Elder Hellberg saying bye, to us having to go back again so I could say bye and Thank you! :)
Well thanks for the pictures. Dad is in my prayers. Sounds like he is working hard! and Mom just keep doing what you do! Because you are doing a great job at it! :) I am really tired this week and don't feel like writing a lot! I will fill you in more next week! Take care and God Bless! I have felt his hand in my life. And no matter what all the doubters, all the unbelievers, and all the persecuters may say,He is there. And he loves us. Keep him in your hearts, and don't be afraid to question. Because if we don't question there is no growth! :) I have felt that and I know that! Love you guys so much! Love you! Take care!
Love, Marky Mark!!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

I'm Doing Just Fine


Hey there everyone!! How are you??

So I have been thinking about you guys a lot this week! And I have been thinking about how the Lord has blessed me with such awesome family and Friends! :) I miss you guys and love you all so much! 

So Thanksgiving was fun! We went and ate at Sister Ortiz’s house for lunch and our investigator Anthony’s for dinner! It was a lot of fun! Nothing like being home though! And the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade was a lot of fun as well! :) We went with the Sisters: Sister Anderson and Alverez!  Fun for sure. But way over hyped! I think it would be fun to be there with like Garrett and Thomas! Or just like little kids! But really cool balloons! My favorite was the Picachu one! Lol! 

So Anthony’s Baptism is Saturday! I am way excited for him! Elder Hellberg will be baptizing him! So that’s way cool for him right before he goes home! And we are going over there tonight to make sure everything is good! :) 

So I sent Stephie a card yesterday! A little late I know! So please call her and tell her it’s on its way and that I say Happy Birthday! :) How is she doing?? :) So yeah I kind of knew Bryan was going to be quitting football. He told me in his last letter. I hope I hear from him soon lol!  And yes I will write Todd. I always mean to do it but I feel like I never have the time! I will probably keep this email short just so I can make sure that I do it! :) But I enjoyed the little letter he wrote on Facebook.

So yup all things considered I'm doing just fine! :) That’s funny you watched all those videos! I miss stupid things like that haha! But I am good! We just really need to pick the work back up! Elder Hellberg’s trunk is starting to get heavy. It’s been a difficult week for the both of us. He has been pretty emotional. I feel for him!  But the Lord is blessing us! I am happy! :) And I cannot complain! :) I am just ready for the new cycle!  Well I will try to write more later! But if I don’t I love you all very much! and I miss you a ton as well! Not much has changed! and I am going to go write Todd a letter now! :) Well I love you all! 

Okay add on lol! But yes I will keep Nichole in my prayers! That’s awesome she had an interview with Bishop Remund! Tell her I said Hello and that I am happy for her! she is such a great girl and she is going to be eternally happy with the decision she made! 

And I am glad you got to see Melissa on Friday! :) That seriously makes me so so happy! :)  What did you guys get me?? :) haha! And I still have no idea what to get her! Lol! So yeah one more thing I want for Christmas is a new set of Scriptures! Mine are getting torn up! Different little kids have enjoyed ripping pages lol! All of which I have taped! But a new set would be nice! I have pretty much marked the ones I have up and down! And those pictures I asked for last week! :) 

And I just want to say sorry about the Amex charges.. I ran out of money really fast last month and I bought some Rogaine  lol! :) So don't be too mad at me! Sorry! I made a budget for this month so I am going to try my best to maintain it! Okay well I love you all much! Todd should be getting a letter very soon! :) 
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Love, Mark! :) 

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!





Hello! Hello! Everyone!

Hope everyone is doing good! I am doing pretty awesome myself! I had a good week other than the fact that I was sick last Wednesday and Thursday and was in all day! Never want that to happen again on my mission! So boring just to lay in bed all day without movies to watch or video games to play! lol! But it was a good week! :)

So Thanksgiving is tomorrow!! Yay! Happy Turkey Day everyone! :) We don't get to play football tomorrow so we are going to do it today as missionaries on the island of Manhattan. So that will be fun! President Smith does not like us to play sports off PDay at all. Even if it is with investigators, which I disagree with but oh well! I know there are some elders who are going to go play with their Wards anyway tomorrow. Our Ward does not play football, so we don't really have anything going on in the morning! But we are going to the Macy’s day parade tomorrow. but only for a little bit! But I am excited for that! I think that will be pretty fun! We got special permission from the AP's to go! After that we are going to teach a lesson at the Church with 2 or 3 of our investigators who are of deacon age! (12 – 13 years)  So that will be pretty sweet! And their friends from the Church will be coming as well! I will tell you more about all of them in just a minute! :) Then we are having a lunch with Sister Ortiz and Dinner with our investigator Anthony and his wife Angie! :) So it looks like it is going to be a pretty eventful day!

So you were asking - Yes looks like I will be here for 6 more weeks after this transfer! We had interviews with President Smith and he asked me how I liked the area and I told him I love it! And he told me “good” because he does not want to white wash it because he knows how hard Elder Huerta Luna and I worked to build it up from where it was! (White washing refers to the practice of removing both missionaries, ie. Mark and his companion, from the area.  Elder Hellberg, his companion is going home next week.) This area was dry for 3 years before Elder Martindale came apparently. And just in this past year we have had 8 baptisms. Crazy! The Lord really does work miracles! But it only comes with hard work! I have a testimony of that!  And on the 3rd we have one more on the way! :) Anthony is a great guy! I am excited! Like I said we are going over there for Thanksgiving! His wife Angie was a less active but wanted to expose him to the church! And now he is here and is making great friends and loving the things he hears and has felt them in his heart that they are true! :) Really relaxed chill guy! He is from the Dominican Republic and just cool to be around. He is like 26 I believe and works at a barber shop here in the city! :) But anyway back to what I was saying about my interview. President Smith asked me if I would like to stay 6 more weeks and I said "of course" then he looked me in in the eyes and said, “You love Harlem right?” And I said "yes"  and he said, “Good. Because this will be the best area you serve in!” And that was way cool to hear! But kind of sad at the same time because I know when I leave I will be heartbroken! I love this ward and the people here! But I am glad that I will have been able to spend 8 months with them! :) 
So yes we are teaching Diego (Friend of Luis M.) and also 2 friends of Christian C. Diego is 13 and reminds me a lot of Todd lol! Funny kid! I just met his mom for the first time the other day because she is super busy! Way fun family! Reminds me of home a little bit actually! But we are teaching his friends Izel and Rapheal. Izel does not speak a lick of Spanish lol! But he wants to be baptized into the Spanish Ward so he can be with Christian. And Raphael, we have only met with once! But we are playing dodgeball with them all tomorrow at the church! And talking to them after! 2 Sundays ago I taught their young men’s lesson and challenged them all to read the Book of Mormon between now and Christmas! So I am excited for them! They are all awesome kids! Diego has a baptismal date for the 3rd of December but he feels like the Bishop is pressuring him into it so if the Spirit directs we are going to tell him to think about it between now and Christmas and also to pray. And he can let us know then and will continue to meet with us until then! :) And Izel said yes to Baptism but was going to speak to his mom and we will find out how that went tomorrow! :) But it sounds like his mom is already really supportive! :)

So mom glad to hear you listened to the Spirit about your job! I know that must have been tough but it will all work out for the best! I am trying to get better at listening to it! But sometimes it’s really hard with all the noise and distractions that are New York City lol! And you all know me with my ADD lol!

And fun that Lindsay is doing all that! I will be keeping her in my prayers for sure! :)

So sounds like Christmas will be fun! I wish I could go black Friday shopping! I remember when me and Mckeon went last year! And that was probably the most fun I have ever had going shopping lol! I bought that pump action paintball gun lol! Gosh I miss that kid! What are the big gifts this year?? And awesome to hear about Julian! I need to write him! I miss him too! I just miss so many people lol! I am excited to call home on Christmas to talk to you all! And no not much for Christmas I really want! Just the Lion King lol! Keep it for me! Also Harry Potter and other movies. then the Picture thing I asked for! If anyone else wants to send anything just send money! And yeah let me know next week about Secret Santa! I am excited to go shopping for that! We are going to go to FAO Schwartz next cycle. The Giant Toy Store from Home Alone! I am pumped so I am probably going to end up buying for more than just my SS lol! But I also need some ideas for Melissa lol! I am struggling to think what to get her! any ideas?? And then I will probably send home some gifts for my friends. lol! Just some small stuff! But yeah I am excited for Christmas in NYC :) It’s going to be fun! Just going to really miss family and friends! And I don't really know what a latino Navidad is like so I guess we will find out lol! :)

 Okay well I am going to pause my writing for a little bit. We are leaving to go play football! :) I will be on to finish typing later! Love you all! :) 

Back! So mom to answer your questions.... No most likely not I will not get to go to the Rockefeller center :(  and unless you can send me Jack n the Box or Steak n shake or QT there is nothing that they don't have here that I really miss lol! If I can think of something between now and then I  will let you know!

So football drained the heck out of me! I am so tired! We had a way good turn out though! I am so beat up! Sometime I think I try maybe a little too hard lol! 

Well I have already written a lot! lol! Uhm mom if you could get a new cord for the N64 I would appreciate it! :) Get it for Garret please! and also if you could send me Both of the heads from my Lacrosse stick in a package that would be great. Elder Covel lives with me and he played lacrosse in high school so we want to throw around. We can buy the shafts here!  :) Well other than that I love you all! :) And I miss you! Miracles are happening! Tell Greg I would like an email soon! :) And also from all of the kids more often! :) Tell Nicole I said hi! She is in my prayers! Well I love you all! And I hope you don't have too good of a thanksgiving without me :) J.k. Have fun with football and Turkey and tell Granny, Pop pop and Steph I wish I could be there! Take care and God Bless! I hope you all have a great week! :) 

With MUch love! Elder Mark Mattei! :) 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Super Short!


Hey Everyone!!

Glad to hear about Lindsay and Greg that is awesome! And still stinks about todd! (Todd is still not playing hockey due to a concussion) and if you all can notice I don't have time lol! I love you all and all is good! Seeing Bro. Tuttle was  great!  But it was great and I loved it! We have 2 bap dates one with David who is 14 and one with Anthony! Both awesome people, David, or Diago is a friend of Jose Munoz! We are all really excited for what is to come! And I apologize this is so short again!



No plans yet for Thanksgiving! And I hope greg figures everything out! He is in my prayers as you all are! And Mom I need my social security card number! lol! Ahh... I am so rushed I don't know what to say! Just know that I love you all! And things are going amazing! I got a letter from Tracy, Sis Robertson, and Granma this week! All of which i appreciate so much! You seriously have no idea!  I would say more but have no time! Well I love you all!Take care! I pray for you all! :) Love, Mark! :) 

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Phone Calls!


Hello everyone! 

I am doing great! Glad to hear everything is semi normal back home! Ya know I almost forgot how crazy our house was after living here for 7 months lol! But that stinks about Todd and the concussion! And yeah I am way excited to see Brother Tuttle! I am anticipating his phone call and being able to see him! I really can't wait! And I was going to see Aunt Cindy! You guys told me she was coming again soon like 4 months ago... I would love to see her! Just so happened that she came like my first week in NY and my comps guilted me into not seeing her lol! But is she coming again soon I hope?? Before I leave Mann? But really I am way excited to see him (Brother Tuttle is a family friend/former bishop that will be in NYC next week on business - one of Mark's favorite people)! That will be fun! Also I am seeing Elder Sawa probably next week! Well I guess not elder anymore but Sawa lol!(Sawa, aka Hiroki Sawayanagi, is a former missionary who served here in St Louis.  He recently moved to Queens).   He called me the other night and I talked to him for like 30 minutes! haha! Hopefully I will be meeting up with him sometime next week! That will be fun! Such a great guy! :) So I am pretty much ecstatic to see the both of them! Something familiar! haha! 

I feel bad for Elder Hellberg. His mom is in the city this week! haha He wanted to go spy on her today for p-day. He is so trunked out! He is trying to hold it in but it is so obvious! And his mom being in town this week made it worse lol! Elder Clark and Torres went down to the temple this morning to go meet her. Both Torres and Clark are in our district and both served with Hellberg as well. lol! So I just think it is funny! Elder Hellberg is always talking about home though lol! Its kind of funny, but at times can be a little distracting for me as well! 

So we seem to  be losing all of our investigators lol! Edgar moved to Miami :( But he said he is going to find the missionaries there! So Keep that man in your prayers please! And Custodio is now in the Bronx so Elders Dilling and Hume are teaching him and helping him out! But yesterday we started teaching Miguel, Pedro and Ana again! I don't know if you all remember them but I was teaching them with Elder Huerta and Elder Martindale about 4 or 5 months ago! So we will see how this goes for the second time around! I pray they are willing to Act this time! Elder Hellberg is a great teacher so I think it will go really well! :) 

Haha so you will never guess who just called!!! Brother Tuttle! Lol! That was so cool to be able to talk to him! I'm excited! I am going to see him either Saturday or Tuesday! :) I don't really have any idea where we should go, but i will figure that out! lol! But its going to be fun! :) I love him so much and I am excited to see him again! 

Also we are teaching this guy named Anthony! He is way cool! I was talking to him about the World Series!  He is newly wedded to a less active in our Ward and she decided to come back to church! Also they came to Church this weekend so that was awesome! He is a cool guy. He is from the DR. (Dominican Republic) We plan on setting a baptismal date next time we see him! 

Also we are teaching a friend of Luis Munoz. He is 14 and goes to Scouts on Fridays with the kids. Also he has gone to church a couple of times and he is peaking some interest! So we are excited to begin talking with him! So is Luis! So its going to be a good week this week! I can just feel it! :) 

So we watched part of the New York Marathon this weekend! That was cool! They ran right by the church! We were standing there trying to cross 5th Avenue with the Munoz for about 30 minutes lol! It took Jose forever to run across. And yeah that just made me miss XC a ton! I really wanted to just jump in there and run with them! I really hope when I come home I can enter some races on my own! Would not mind to come back at some point and run the NYC Marathon with Jackson and Tre. Just like the good ole days! Also missing hockey a ton! Gash. Every time we walk through Central Park I can always see the kids skating around off in the distance! I'm for sure going to join an adult leuge or something when  I get home! 

So LSU spanked Bama! Haha Elder Willis was so mad! Sounded like a great game! I really hope you recorded it because that is one I will want to watch when I get home! That is so awesome though! Makes me so happy! LSU is still #1. What # did Bama drop down to?? 

Well  mom glad to hear work is going good! I am so grateful for both you and Dad and all you do! You both are awesome and the best parents ever! I hope I can show more gratitude than what I did before my mission! Because the 2 of you are seriously just amazing! I don't have a whole lot to say this week! Just thank you for everything! I miss you all! I miss the Ward! Please let them know that! :) And I love them! And  please help out the missionaries there as much as possible! This is the Lord's work and it is such a blessing to be part of it! You all should do the same! :) 

Love you tons! 

Love your goofy son Mark! :)

P.S. Tre, Mckeon, Jackson and Rj are freaking awesome! I just read an email from Rj and Jackson and I am so proud of all of them! That's just exciting! So many people are being affected that it's not even funny! How blessed they are to be out of the country in other parts of the world serving the Lord! It really does take someone special to go to a place like France and Russia! I truly believe that only those that are truly prepared and truly called to serve the Lord could do something such as that! And how lucky Tre and Mckeon are to be in Mexico! From my experience some of the most humble people in the World! :) Tre and I might as well share the same mission! Because 90% of the Mexicans we meet here are from Puebla! :) I just love them! sorry just wanted to throw that in there really quick! :) They are examples to me and how blessed I am to have them in my life! 

Sunday, November 6, 2011

A Beautiful Day in Harlem


Hey Mom it is a beautiful day in Harlem! The weather is nice and everything is just perfect! The News about the Cardinals win was awesome! I wish I would have been there to see it! But everything is going good here! And yes the Harlem side of the city is pretty trashy! Every morning there is a ton of trash and debris on the ground from the night before! But I love it! It's home for now! Until I get transferred! I have been here a really long time! And I don't know if I will have another area on my mission where I will stay this long lol! So it's my home away from home! :)

That's sad Tony Larussa's retired! I did not know that end of the story!! I saw something on ESPN this morning while doing Laundry and it took everything out of me not to watch! Both LSU and THe Cardinals were the primary topics! Ahh so hard! Me and Elder Hellberg just ended up taking a walk while our Laundry dried because I did not want to watch lol! Missionary life is so weird! What other culture has to be around someone 24/7, can't watch tv, can't  call home, has to wake up at a certain time and go to bed at a certain time?? There is none! Lol! Its so weird now that I think about it! But it all comes down to agency ya know?? And I have seen the blessings from doing just the little things! But anyways keep me updated on the LSU game! And yeah I knew about the Saints... I was at the Munoz and it came on Spanish news for about 3 seconds and I saw enough to realize that they lost lol!

Oh and speaking about Greg and not knowing what he is going to do... I actually think I may have changed directions with what I want to do... Guys... I think I want to be a teacher?? I mean tell me what you think. But it just makes sense! And not just a teacher! I would really like to go into like administration so I can be over a school and make pretty good money. Here are my reasons! 1. I would get to help a ton of kids learn and grow and I would have a much higher impact in somebody's life than if I would be speaking on a TV talking about football all day. 2. I would have summers off to spend with my family. 3. Good retirement. 4. I could Coach! Something I have always wanted to do! I loved helping Todd! And I think I would be a lot better at it, then what I am an actual athlete! And I would still be around sports. and I could coach XC, LAcrosse, or Hockey.. IDK it just makes sense to me! 5. and I would be able to write like I have always wanted to do! It just made so much sense to me! I prayed about it and it just seems so right! And I could incorporate so many of the different things I am interested in into this career field. If I was an administrator i would still get to be a public speaker, I could still deal with Sports.. Tell me what you think! IT just makes so much sense with what I want to do with my life! So I pray that Greg can have the same kind of revelation I had! And yes I still want go to to LSU. Probably do a little more time at SCC though.

Crazy to think Tre is in the MTC! I am so happy for him! He is going to do great! I will have to find out who his teachers are! There are hundreds of them so I doubt they are the same! But I can hope! :) I miss that boy! Such A good kid! I remember how nervous I was before I went in! I was acting so awkward lol! Even Tre could see it! Ahh seems like so long ago! But at the same time just yesterday! Elder Huerta is in his mission boundries so I am going to have him go visit Tre when he goes home! 

I miss my little Mexican lol! He was so fun to be around! But now he is comps with Sorenson and living with Elder Kay! So he is going to have fun up there! Elder Hellberg only has like 5 weeks left in his mission! He is pretty trunky lol! But he is working hard so that is good! He is going to be the second person I will have killed off! He is a great kid and I love him a lot! He has taught me a lot of things! Patience being one of them lol! But no our apartment situation is not good! I miss Elder Stratton. 













So today I went to the Bronx zoo for the second time! Personally I prefer the St. Louis but It was still pretty fun! I was pretty bummed because I left my Camera! But other than that not really! Went to Central Park a couple weeks ago! When to Chinatown once. Also went to go shopping with Elder Hellberg in South Mann. Nothing too fun! Elder Hellberg has pretty much been taking charge on the P-Days the past couple weeks. Which I am fine with because he is going home soon! But yeah not too much really exciting. Most of the really fun NY stuff we will not have the opportunity to do as Missionaries. Well we do get to go to one Broadway play our last 2 cycles so until that.. eh. I will go see the Lion King for sure! :) I am excited for that! :) And the Snow was good! I bought some gloves and a hat! And my boots destroyed anything in my path lol! I felt like a tank! Elder Hellberg made fun of them but i think they are awesome! :P 

And the work is going good! We have not seen as many people the past couple weeks, but its all good! We are teaching a family of like 6! Belkis, German, Jason, and I forget the other ones names. They were only there for one lesson! They accepted Baptism! So we will talk about a date with them the next time we see them!  :) Also we are teaching Edgar, who is the Catholic Priest! We have not met with him in a couple weeks! But that is going good! He just remains really busy and his plans are always backed up! But we have had help from a member in our Ward who went to the Catholic Seminary for 4 years.  He is one of the smartest guys I have ever met! He works for the UN! Way nice guy and so knowlegeable! He pretty much just teaches us each time we go there! Even better than that! Edgar is a great person with a great heart! With a strong faith in Christ! And he just loves! Just loves everybody! :) And Wilson is still coming to church! Like I have said a thousand times.. Their situation is really interesting.. and it just got even more so.. And the two kids.. Ahh.. Their  mom won't take them to church! It's so frustrating! Such a nice lady! But Rogelio and Jazmine want to go..  But nice people! I just want to see them at church a little more often! The Sacrament is so important! I have grown a testimony of that while I have been on my mission!

Okay 3 more things! First.. So we were walking down the street yesterday and I had one of the most Random/Weird experiences of my life! This guy just calls out "Mormons" and I stop and talk to him! Then he goes and tells us how much he loves us, and I can just smell the stench of Alcohol on his breath! And then he grabs Elder Hellberg by the Head and pets him lol! Then he reaches over and strokes my hair as well! Haha remember all of this is happening in the middle of a crowded New York City sidewalk lol! Then we are just like "You have a great day sir" LoL! What a CRazy old man!! LOL! Haha! I love Harlem people! Just brightens my day! haha! there is always something new! haha then the day before that we are buying metro Cards and this guy just yells out from behind us "Look Everybody! White People!" " everybody @#$%^& look at the  @#$%^& White people" Then two tourists walk down who have no idea how to act and the man is like " More white people! I am in heaven! MAn White people I love you guys so much!" haha And I am sitting back trying not to laugh! Then he says "Oh they're not talking to me. The white people don't love me back. Jesus, Why don't the white people love me?" Haha and the 2 tourists look like they are going to poop themselves because they feel so awkward lol! So I just walk up to him and ask him his name and tells me Kelvin And I just told him I loved him! and it just looked like it made his day! haha it was so funny! He was a little crazy but haha just made my day! Haha, That's Harlem for you though! Bunch of crazy people that you can't help but love! 

 So we were teaching this man nambed Custodio. He is like 65 years old... Talk about a life changing/ Spiritual experience talking to this man.. He told us his life story. There was just something so different in his eyes! So much love! And so much faith! Mom, I can't even explain it! He is going to die. But he knows where he is going! He knows! I can see it in him! We walked into his room after he had switched hospitals, and the Book of Mormon is sitting right on his bed side! He tells us of his faith in Christ and wow... What a great guy, what a choice spirit of our Heavenly Father! He has seen the hand of God in his life! And through him I have seen it in mine! And I sure hope all of you are too! It is amazing! and it is life changing! If anyone ever lacks faith! Just get on your knees and pour your heart to him and he will answer you! He will hear you! He loves you! I promise that! And I promise he is there! Just look for him! 

I love you all so much! And I miss you! Just keep being the awesome people you are! To both my family and friends! I love you all and will talk to you soon! Take care and have a great week! 

Love you all!

Elder Mark Mattei! :)











Friday, October 28, 2011

Changes


Hey mom! Sorry really not a lot of time today! I am still hear in Harlem! Its a crazy feeling! I feel like I have made a home out of this place! In reality it has become a new home for me! And I have learned to love so many people! I have also felt myself changing! I am now a lot closer to my Savior and understand his Atoning Sacrifice just a measure more than what I did when I came out here! Things are a lot different since I came out here. Elder Beswick is the only one left here that was in the Original Zone that I am now a part of.. Elder Lewis and Elder Huerta left today. Elder Huerta is with Elder Sorenson! Which is awesome! He is also living with Elder Kay! So I know he is in good hands! And Elder Lewis went upstate :( Makes me sad because both of us arrived here as greenies together! I miss him already! On top of that our apartment has changed again! Elder Willis left first of all to finish his last 2 cycles in Newberg. And Elder Stratton moved to the other missionary apartment right down the street. Things got all switched around as far as living arangements go because one of the Sisters areas here in Manhattan got white washed with Elders. So now I am living with Elder Matthews and yeah.. I forgot the other ones name! lol! But it stinks, because I was just getting way close with Elder Stratton and Elder Hellberg already has problems with the two that just moved in it sounds like! But all will be well and all things happen for a reason :) My testimony has been strengthened on that as well! :) 

Cards are rocking the playoffs! they better win tonight!!  :) And uhm... LSU plays Bama in two weeks! I am kind of bummed that Elder Willis will not be here for that! I was just waiting to rub it in his face when LSU kills them! And I did know peyton was injured! I did not know it was a neck injury though! THat StinkS! For real though they are a one man team now... I am starting to shift over to be more of a saints fan lol! I can't believe they beat them that bad! They are Terrible this year! What is crazy is how well I have heard the Detroit Lions are doing! That is insane! And Green Bay is still undefeated right?? 

And Mom I know you have a strong Testimony! I have heard it many times! You don't have to feel like you need to say something spiritual! You are already a spiritual Giant without saying anything! Your example says it all :) And yes I did get your package! THank you very much! I really appreciate it! :) And I got a letter and Ten Dollars from Granny! :) So tell her thanks as well! It really does mean a lot when you all do stuff like that! :) It makes my day! 

.And just so you know my complexion has been a lot better. And I have not used cream or pills in like 2 weeks. Only a couple of bumps on my face like once a week! Much better than before! I think that it may be starting to go away rather naturally. HAha sorry I am being so random in this letter I am kind of jumping around all over the place lol! :P But I am good and I love Harlem! Everybody please remember to keep them in your prayers! They are precious to God! We all are! We are his Children! He watches everything we do! He rejoices when we rejoice and he is saddened when we are! I have felt that in my life! He really does love us! And our Saviour Jesus Christ gives us a much better and clearer understanding of that love! He paid the price so that through him we will literally live agian! Its really just amazing! :) AHH!! I love him so much for it! Probably more than anyone else lol! J.k. But I am being dead serious at the same time lol! 

But I am happy I am here! We are still teaching Cindy with Straton and Elder Allen (his new comp) So I will be here for her baptism when she finishes school! :) She is amazing! My favorite investigator and she is not even mine! She is one of the better of my friends I ahve made on my mission! Amazing lady! You all will have to meet her for sure! :)









AHH! Okay I will talk more about the people we are teaching next week I have run out of time! I love you all! And you are all in my prayers! Take care and be safe! I am sorry to hear about uncle Fred. I wish I would have known him better :( That's sad a member of the family died though! :( Well I love you all more then you will ever know! I will have more time next week! LOVE YOU! 
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TAke care and God bless! Love Elder Mark Mattei! :) 

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Short Update


Hey How is everyone doing this week?? :)

I have had a good week so far! Staying busy! Transfers are next week so that is pretty exciting! It is looking like 50/50 as to if I will be leaving or not! I really don't want to, but we will see what happens! I love it here in Harlem! But I really think that I might go! I pray I don't. I would really like the oppurtunity to take over this area after being here so long! Elder Huerta Luna will be leaving for sure.  But we have some pretty awesome investigators right now! I told you about most of them last week! We have one other older man that we started teaching since I last talked to you all! His name is Custodio. He is dominican. He has cancer throughout his whole body! We visited him in the Hospital because someone referred us to him. He is a great guy! There is just something so very different about him. The spirit is just with him! I can see it in his eyes! I felt like breaking down and crying both times we went to visit him! He is 56 years old! Please keep him in your prayers! We hope to get the opportunity to go back and visit him very soon! 

So I know all about the Cardinals! That just makes me so happy and that is awesome! I am so excited! I stopped calling the thing on the phone to check the scores because I figured it is a bad idea lol! So now I am just going to have to find out what is going on by word of mouth.,.. I guess I kind of have the same fear as Greg did if I even am showing an interest in figuring out the score to the game they will lose lol! But LSU plays Auburn this weekend! that will be a fun game for you all to watch! Let me know how it goes for sure! As well as the World Series! The LSU vs Alabama game is going to be really good as well!! I am excited for it! I hope LSU completely destroys them! I am guessing it will be a way close game though!

Well, Madre madre Madre you gave me a ton of questions to respond to so I guess I will start with that. But first that stinks Mckean is going to be living in AZ :( Uh... That kid is like one of my best friends and he and Tre don't even live close anymore!! AHHH!! 

Okay sorry we really don't have a lot of time :( I keep getting on and off its a pain! Well I am glad you like the pictures! You need to send me an envelope back with all the ones I have already sent! Or the thing I asked for for Christmas! :) But yeah my profile picture I actually have no idea which one you are even talking about! I had like no room left on my memory card when I sent it!

Okay well Mom I have to email Greg so I am going to keep this one a little short! Just know I love you all! And you are all in my prayers! I am having an experience of a life time! I am growing as a person so much! I am learning to love others more and more everyday! I already know I am going to be blessed and this is going to help me for the rest of my life! I have already seen blessings in my life and in all of yours! Thank you all for all you do! Have a great week! Love you MUCHO!

Love, Elder Mark Mattei! :) God bless you all! Each and every one of you are amazing! :) 

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Answer my Questions, Please!


Mommy!! HI Hi!! 

so a lot of new stuff going on this week! Things are ridiculously awesome/hard I am going to try to summarize because I do not have too much time today!

Well number one the reason my emails have been shorter is because 1, Elder Hellberg always wants to go somewhere and do something, as do I, but we manage to get it all done. And 2, because I am running out of things to say! Haha I mean not exactly, but I can only tell you as much as what has happened and as much as I have on my mind!

Well this week was a bit of a rough week! Things in our Trio have been a little rocky at times. 3 different ideas being tossed around, each one of us wanting  to do or work in our own way. And instead of one person getting shut down its two. So yeah it has been a little difficult but we are doing a good job at getting past it and talking it out. We all have our differences, but this is by far my hardest cycle so far. Elder Hellberg and I are great friends but we definitely have our differences. But a great kid with a great heart, if you want something done it will get done if you ask Hellberg and he is going to love you no matter what! And Elder Huerta is just my favorite little Mexican ever lol! Way funny kid!

But anyways so we have 2 great new investigators! One is named Belkis! she just had her baby last night and we are going to visit her tonight at 7! I am way excited! We gave her a blessing last week sometime! I still don't know her very well, because I missed the first lesson we had with her! She seems really nice though! And Elder Huerta and Hellberg have said just some of the most amazing things about her!

Then there is Edgar... Edgar is a Catholic priest... Or should I say was a Catholic priest. He is a very strong Catholic and a very smart man! He is not a priest anymore. He was working with a Bishop in Brooklyn whose sister just got baptized in our Ward. So he brought Edgar to General Conference here and we started talking to him! He thought the idea of a prophet was very interesting. He is still a very strong Catholic. He has a lot of questions. Most of them we have been able to answer! I am just glad I know a lot about Catholic History and did my studying before my mission... I now know there was a reason for all that! He loves the idea of the Book of Mormon! We shared with him some Scriptures from the Bible and he just was like "Wow" I have never heard those before! He is a very logical person... Not as much Spiritual, but that is something that he told us he is hoping to find! Because he was always discouraged to do so before. The only problem he is having right now is accepting the apostasy. We have taught him a lot about it! And plan on talking with him more! There is a member in our ward who was in the Catholic Seminary about to become a priest when he found the missionaries. So he told us he was going to help us explain. So far we have done a pretty good job... I mean really though after this is all said and done, the only way he will be able to know for himself is to read and to pray which he told us he will do! And I know if he does, and does so with a sincere desire and open heart God will answer his long desired prayer! :) He is such a nice guy! Catholic priests really are such great people! Because they have that desire to follow Christ! And that is why I love all people who have a desire to do good! Because they want to be a better person! And I know that this man will find what he is looking for! That he is going to find that missing piece! And I am grateful for this chance we have to teach him because it is going to be a great experience where I will have the opportunity to become stronger spiritually! :)

So yeah other than all that not too much is going on here! Just preparing for winter! And don't worry I will buy all the winter stuff I need! Just send me the boots and my Colts beenie to sleep in and I will be good! Actually and socks too, because I would not know a good place where we can go to find them!

So Transfers are not next Wednesday, but in 2 weeks from today! Crazy how fast time is flying! This time Elder Huerta is going to be leaving for sure! He only has 3 cycles left! He was here for a year! How ridiculously awesome is that?? I will be sad to see him go! We have become such great friends!

But really I am so excited for Tre! He is going to do such great things! He is a great kid with a great heart!! :)

And mom start answering my questions lol! You never really do! Haha so go back to last weeks email and answer what you did not answer lol! Do like I do, if there is something I want to say I write it in a notebook so I don't forget to email it on Wednesday! Just write down the questions I ask :P Haha! I know I am bad at it too!

Oh and no I did not get school pictures so if you would like to send those to me that would be awesome!

And Yes Mom the Text was very funny! HAha Don't worry I did what it asked! I was really happy! I was like in the middle of Church when I got it! The phone went off during Priesthood lol! I was like huh??? Then I looked at the number and everything clicked lol! But really tell Nichole I am so happy for her and she is in my prayers! Seriously that made me happy to hear that! Just let her know all will be fine and no matter what happens the Lord is with her and he knows exactly what she will be going through. :) She is an awesome person! Make sure you let her know I said that!

So yes I know all about the Cardinals and LSU! Elder Willis is a huge Bama fan! We are counting down until the game! haha! But yeah I call this thing called “Tell me” and see how the games were whenever I call in to see what the weather is going to be like for the next day! So I stay updated with who won and lost! Nothing more! So if you could do me the honor of informing me on the NCAA Football, NHL, MLB, and NFL I would much appreciate it! :) I have become an even bigger sports fan now that I am not able to watch it! :/ But its all good! It will keep me busy when I get back! I am praying the Cards take the World Series! and LSU keeps an undefeated season! I want the same miracles that Greg got on his mission with the Saints! The place I want to see it the most though is with the Blues! haha!

Oh and I don't know if I told you all! But I want one of those picture slideshow things like Grandma and Grandpa have! I would like one for Christmas! :)

Oh..And GET MY NET!!! I don't care what you have to do! it was 150$ Message Ethan Schnitzler on my facebook or contact his mom or something! Just get it! I am not joking! It better be there when I get home! lol! But seriously! If you can do something about it this week! It would make me really happy to hear that it is safely back in the Garage next week when I get my email! :)

Okay yall! :P Well not much else to say! Pray that Edgar accepts Baptism when he finds out these things are true! I am praying that will be by next Tuesday when we see him again! :) He is the closest we have right now! And its going to take a lot of Faith! :) But hopefully we have a nice meeting with Belkis tonight! that would be real nice! she also has 2 daughters and her Mom is interested! So a total of 4 in that family! So far I have only met her! :) Things are good! We are working hard! :)

Well let me know how you all are doing! Take care of Thomas! I love that little guy! He needs all the help he can get from the family to get through these hard times he is having at school! Mom I am glad to hear about your job! I told you all things would work out for the better!
Okay well keep me updated! I am going to try to write Elder Burgoyne back and Greg really quick!! :) Burgoyne finishes in 7 days!! Okay Love you all! :) Love, Elder Marky Mattei! :)

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Mother Dearest, You Make Me Laugh!


Mother dearest! You make me laugh lol! 

Haha you have nothing to worry about I don't plan on dying anytime soon! There are still a lot of things I want to do!  (This is his response to me pleading with him to be careful!  I told him that while I appreciate his desire to meet the Savior, as he so often writes, I would prefer that he stay here for awhile.)   Haha So McKeon cracks me up lol! That kid is so funny! I read his blog! such an interesting case! Probably one of the most unique and pure hearted people in the world! I love him so much! Him and his goofy smile! lol! But anywaysss....


Yeah the charge was for a winter coat. And no it is not some ugly Trench coat lol! ( Sorry if I offend anyone who likes trench coats... Just not for me.. ) Its just a regular winter coat. And no nobody has trench coats lol! Other than Elder Huerta.. And his looks goofy as heck! lol! But its a nice coat. It fits snugly under my Northface one so if it gets really cold between the 2 of them I will be good! :) And it looks pretty good like that as well so I am not complaining. Also I bought a sweater because I only have 1.  Thank you all so much! Seriously! thank you! :) I love you! :) 

Haha Elder Huerta has 5 witner Coats!!!!! HAHA He bought them all here! Isn't that ridiculous?? He is from Mexico?? he is never going to use them!!! Haha he makes me laugh! Such A cool kid! But anyways. I do need a beenie! I can buy one here with the Amex if thats okay with yall?? But I also want someone to send me my colts knit cap one?? I like to sleep in it :) 

And The weather is absolutely perfect right now! I love it! But no mom no fall colors.. There are hardly any trees lol! But no for the most part everything is still green! Nothing has really started falling yet! I am excited to go into central park when everything does though! That will be fun! 

And General Conference was amazing!! (Twice a year, instead of attending regular services, we view General Conference via satellite.  The president of our Church, as well as other church leaders address the congregation.)   So fun! It was exactly what I needed!  I don't think I have ever enjoyed it so much!!! I love President Monson! Definitely a man of God! He is a prophet and there is nothing else to it! He just has the best spirit in the world! and I just loved all the messages as a whole! I really like  Elder Holland's talk during the Priesthood session! Gash Tore the Aaronic priesthood apart! lol! seriously those preparing for missions he was just on fire! I loved it! And I was so happy when he addressed those on missions and who had already served he was just like "Thank you for all you do!" And I was like okay good! Not going to yell at us! Lol! seriously though he is awesome! he is an awesome person! And you can just tell he loves you by the things he says and the way he says them! I could sit here and type about conference for 2347238957459034785890348590568 hours if I wanted to lol! 

Well Glad to hear lindsay is enjoying school and Greg is being.. Well the same Greg I have always known lol! But yeah china town was awesome! very different! I was mad I forgot to bring my camera. But all good! Everything is so Cheap there! Haha They have the nicest stuff for the best prices.. I mean its all fake, but you could never tell the difference! Its fun to bargain with the people working there too! Haha, I just showed them my money and said this is all I have and they would generally lower the price to that lol! Funny stuff man! :P 

Oh mom before I forget I need the acne pills! :) Porfavor y Gracias! :) Tu eres la mejor! :) JAJA! :P 

I am so happy that Tre is leaving so soon! I am so excited for him! He is going to do great things! He has such a good heart, and is just one of the best people ever! 

so this past week has been really difficult! Its started off really really hard at first ! But it has gotten a lot better! we only had one investigator at the beginning of last week! And I went on a split with Elders Willis and Stratton yesterday and Elder Huerta and Hellberg found us 4 news! :) Its a family! So now I am really happy are really excited to meet them! Plus I was happy because we are still going over to Cindy's with Willis and Stratton and teaching her! She will be able to be baptized in January when she is done with School! I wish that would just come! she is awesome! Probably one of my favorite investigators and she in technically not even ours! She is just so easy for us to talk to lol! she calls us "her Mormons" lol! You all will have to meet her after this is all said in done! Just a great lady! She is just an outstanding mom to her daughter too! I wish she had someone to help her out! Wonderful Spirt! 

Well I really don't know what else to say! Other than that I love life and things are going well! Keep me in your prayers though! I do need them! and even more important, as always pray for the people here! :) Oh and the picking us up thing I don't know what's up with that! But if that's what President Smith wants that is what is best!! But when I leave it will be a different mission President so we can see what he says. But I really do think I want to fly home right away! It just feels like the only right way to do it ya know?? 

Okay well I love you all so very much! Take care and God Bless! 

Love, Marky!