Sunday, November 28, 2010

Yes, We Are Thankful

Nothing makes us more thankful than to have baptisms. The Office Elders love baptizing Vitoria in Fuengirola on a beautiful sunny Sunday.
We are thankful to be able to see old missionaries with their wives. Elder Castellon is happy and married in Elche with his beautiful wife, Stefanni.
How can we not be thankful for more baptisms. They had a wonderful baptism in Alicante of Anna who was introduced to the gospel by her friend who is standing next to Elder Becerra. What great member missionary work.
And Paqui is pictured here with Hnas Brown and Ackerman with Hermana Caballero, who introduced her to the gospel. We are liking all this member help.
And even though they don't celebrate Thanksgiving anywhere except in the USA and Canada, we had to celebrate in the mission home. The Malaga Zone choose to have their p-day with us and eat a little turkey. It was a sacrifice, but someone had to do it!
"Yea, that's right" said Elder Niebergall while Elder Solari is already sleeping just thinking about the effects of a big turkey dinner. Hnas Millan and Stolk seemed amused!
Elders Bullen, Brian and Wallace look like they are getting enough. Elder Wallace made us a green bean casserole to go with the meal. The Hermanas made the salad, Elder Brian and Solari made some cookies as well as Elder Niebergall made some treats. Elder Bullen was just happy to be able to eat it all.
Elder Hunt and Elder Sanchez aren't too sure what Elder Christensen is laughing about. The fact is Elder Christensen makes the BEST truffles. Wow, a diet breaker here.
Elder Romney and Elder Niebergall have just had too much. Elder Niebergall, is that a belly you are growing? (It took some effort to do that you know)
What do you do with a mission president that forgets his dress shoes? You call the Elders for help. It's a good thing that Alicante had Elders serving there. We drove out the night before in a terrible rain storm and decided to wear our p-day clothes and sweaters in the long car ride. That night Presidente realized he didn't have his shoes. But the Elders to the rescue with a pair to borrow from Elder Becerra. Elders Ward and Vaninetti were at the church waiting for us to arrive. Way to save the day Elders.
After church we posed with the newest member in Alicante and her friend and friends family. It was a wonderful morning visiting both wards in Alicante.
It was off to Elche for a fireside and the Hermanas and Elders look ready for the night. We love Hnas Brown and Ackerman and Elders Marchello and Wardell. Great things are happening in Elche. We had a wonderful night filled with the spirit and many members of the Elche Wards and some from the Branches of Crevillente and Torrevieja. Life is wonderful in the mission field.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Hurrah for Zone Conferences

We always like to start with some of our baptisms. We would have more if the missionaries would send me their pictures. Ciudad Real enjoyed their baptism.
Almeria is doing their part to reach our goal of 200 baptisms for the year. We are currently at 168. The faith of our missionaries is strong and we will see this goal come to pass.
The Hermanas in Sevilla had a wonderful baptism.
They were just so happy.
This was a week of Zone Conferences. It was wonderful and Elders Stanley and Salls are busy getting the food ready for the Sevilla and San Fernando Zones.
Looks like the Elders are enjoying the food. They are having a spiritual feast too, but you have to feed the missionaries.
Yes, we are all smiles here!
Elders Redd and Waite look happy.
I think they look like they approve of the food. Kabob burritos, everyone likes that.
Hnas Montes de Oca, Ramirez, Hidalgo, Clegg, Cluff and Frandsen, after our small break-out session as Hermanas. They are the best!
Two great looking Zones, San Fernando on the left and Sevilla on the right. They brought a wonderful spirit and are going out ready to do better.
Woa, what a surprise, Elder Wells decides to pick up Presidente Clegg. That was a little exciting.
Tuesday we were back in the mission home to say farewell to two Elders who need to go home for medical reasons. They will be missed in the mission.
Elder Siddiqui and Elder Talbot, we wish you well.
What, they had Kabobs in Sevilla? Well in the Malaga/Granada Zone we had meatballs and rice and the best salad ever. Top that one is what Elder Romney seems to be saying.
Hna Millan agrees, this one is top notch.
Happy Elders in these two zones. Elders Brian, Beck, Moss, Christensen and Gold are ready for anything.
Look mom, new glasses! Actually, Elder Stoner is borrowing Hna Clegg's glasses because he didn't bring his glasses and had to throw away his contacts the night before. We are glad they worked!
One thing we do at every Zone Conference is sing Happy Birthday to everyone who had a birthday since the last conference. We always have some fun with this.
The Malaga Zone did a special number which we all enjoyed.
The Cleggs, Hna Stolk, Hna Millan and the Cleggs! Shall we say the Hermanas are surrounded? The Cleggs are loving their assignment in Ciudad Real and we are loving having them here.
We had to let loose just a little bit at the end.
The Granada Zone is on the left and the Malaga Zone is on the right. We had another fabulous Zone Conference. We were taught about planning and prayer and study and the patterns of faith. Whew, a lot to learn.
O.K. Hermana Ackerman, what is on this puzzle you are putting together in the Elche Zone Conference?
What? This doesn't look right. Actually, this was a joke where before her mission she dressed up as a mom to be. Well we have to admit, you look great in the picture, but we are glad you are here with us.
Elder Marchello is delighted with the food in Elche. Hot Dogs with lots of fixings!!
Elder Froberg is catching up on things with Presidente Clegg
I think we have some happy, hungry looking Elders
Yea for the Hermanas of the Elche Zone, Hnas Ackerman, Cannuci, Guerra, Brown and Hermana Clegg.
Elders Del Molino, Becerra and Vaninetti are tearing it up in Alicante along with Elder Ward.
Now this is one great looking Zone. We left Murcia for the long ride home, but our hearts were happy at the state of the mission and the hard working missionaries that we have.
In Sevilla this week they were having an Open House for the new Stake Center that was going to be dedicated on Saturday, Nov 20th. The Deputy Major of Sevilla came for the inagural tour. Pres. Blanco as well and Pres. & Hna Clegg are looking on as he is answering the many reporters who followed him here to this event. This happened on Tuesday, Nov. 16th.
Here he is being presented with a Book of Mormon. He was very impressed by all the displays and what the church is doing. The saints of the Sevilla Stake did a wonderful job in preparing for the open house.
You can see him answering questions in front of one of the many displays.
On Saturday, November 20th, 2010, the dedication took place. It was a wonderful program with an incredible choir with many members from the Granada Stake coming in support. Pres. Faustino Lopez, 3rd from the right, presented a wonderful presentation on the history of the Church in Spain. Presidente Clegg also gave a great talk along with 3 testimonies, two of some of the first members and by Hna Clegg. Finally, Presidente Blanco, the 5th from the left, gave the dedicatory prayer. It was a very special night and the beginning of many more wonderful things to happen in Sevilla and the growth of the church there.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

The Goings and Comings.

Elders, what are you doing? And where is Elder Avellar's white shirt and tie?
What is this, pyjamas, p-day clothes, toothbrushes and white shirts. What is going on here? Well, we'll will tell you later, right Elders?
We start with the work of two hard working Hermanas in Murcia, Hnas Guerra y Ruiz de Mendoza. When they knock doors they
baptize and
and baptize!! Way to go Hermanas
Hnas Ruiz de Mendoza and Ackerman are celebrating their birthdays which are two days apart. Happy Birthday to you!
Most of the Elche Zone is gathered together. Are these some of the best looking missionaries on the planet? Claro que si!
We had to take one last picture of the ayudantes with El Presidente because Elder Halverson is going home.
Elder Halverson is turning over the work to Elder Solari and Elder Brian, the new kid on the block.
Yea, yea, we are going home. Elders Black, Halverson, Hurley and Ruiz de Mendoza are at the mission home for their last night in the mission. They don't look too sad about it. Hey nice apron Elder Brian.
For desert we had a cake and to his surprise we sang Happy Birthday to Elder Brian. His birthday is actually the next day so we truly surprised him.
After the wonderful testimony meeting it was time to lighten up. What are you trying to do Elder Solari?
It's called a Thizz face and look at the experts, Hna Mendo and Hurley.
Elder Black is leaving his last bit of advice to Elder Brian before he goes home. Elder Black hasn't told his girlfriend he is coming home on this date and is she in for a surprise on Saturday. How did it go Elder Black?
A wonderful group who have served with all their hearts. We are going to miss them but wish them the best with all our love.
The next day we started with our next specialized training where Elders Bennett and Masterson are showing off the weight they have lost. They each have lost around 25 lbs since they came on their missions. Way to work hard Elders. Our missionaries do a ton of walking every day.
We always start with some good food. Elders Stowell and Redd are giving their approval.
Elder Masterson looks like he is ready for a mouthful.
His companion, Elder Burdette had to get in the picture along with Elder Donoskovic. Got to keep them fed and watered!
I think they are all doing well.
Elder Taylor is giving the thumbs up on making sandwhiches for the last day.
Here we have the tall and short of the mission. Elder Bassurto is probably our shortest Elder at 5'2" and Elder Taylor is our tallest at 6' 7". But they both have big hearts and work diligently.
Desert is always a great part of eating. Elder Basurrto and Bullen will agree.
Ghee, all these eating pictures are making me hungry.
It was a beautiful day on the morning of our 3rd and final day of the training.
Time to take the tables down and put the mission home back together again.
This is a great looking group of Elders, who worked hard. We enjoyed them so much. Their enthusiasm and willingness to learn was contagious and we had a great training.
And let's jump for joy because we are the best missionaries in the best mission in the world.
Finally on Sunday we went to church in Jerez. What a great ward. Afterwards we went to the Elders piso because there are some repairs to do. Elder Waite is saying, "Hey look mom at the mess!" Actually they have been busying cleaning and working to get it in order.
Elder Giler is a little sad at the current state of the kitchen. But better days are ahead for the Elders in Jerez. Actually they are doing great and the work keeps going forward.