We want to show you what the back of some of our missionaries chapas look like. The end of 2010 was 203 baptisms and 2011 was 325. We now have the huge goal of 404+ so we will need everyones faith and prayers and a lot of super work by our super missionaries over the entire year. We are all up for the challenge and know that if we are obedient and do everything we can, the Lord will be there to guide us and direct us to the honest in heart. We love being missionaries.
Speaking of the honest in heart, Elder Mervai and Elder Hatch found a wonderful man in Alicante. They know this is a very spiritual work and these two are so faithful in all that they do.
The same thing goes for these two wonderful elders, Elder Estrada and Elder Hunt. They are some of the hardest working missionaries in the mission, each week striving to reach the standards of excellence which means bringing souls unto Christ. They are seeing marvelous miracles in Elche.
On the other side of the mission, Elder Brown and Elder Hafen are helping to bring families together in the gospel. This young man was fortunate to have his grandfather come all the way from Switzerland to baptize him. We are all about bringing families together in the gospel. It is a wonderful work.
Our Zone Leaders in Sevilla are busy working to find the elect. Elder Waite and Elder White are a dynamic duo. For the Spaniards Waite and White is said the same way, so they are what we call "Twin" Zone Leaders.
Elder Moss and Elder Redd have also been busy in Granada working on growing the church there. It always helps to have friends when someone decides to accept the gospel in their lives.
This week brought us two wonderful new Hermanas to the mission. Hermana Escobar originally from Columbia but now from Ourense, Spain and Hermana Collett from Draper, Utah. We met them at the train station in Malaga and brought them to the mission home for their orientation and to meet their trainers.
But where are their trainers? Well, we thought we would bring in all the Hermanas to greet them and welcome them to the best place to serve in the world.
Wait a minute, Elder Staples, you seem to be surrounded by 3 Hermanas, where is Elder Thornley when you need him? Hermanas Vasquez, Torres and Vega were so happy to see their former District Leader who is now the Finance Secretary in the mission. He, along with his companion were helping to transport all 20 Hermanas to the mission home for a 3 day leadership conference.
Here they are, ready for some dinner before we start the conference. We have the best Hermanas in the entire world serving in the Malaga Mission.
After dinner the first thing was to let Hermana Escobar and Hermana Collett find out their first area of service and which one of the Hermanas was going to be their trainer. When Hermana Collett picked Dos Hermanas, there were lots of expressions of surprise and disbelief. There haven't been sisters in DOS Hermanas (this means Two Sisters) for years, if ever.
Hermana Collett will be going there with Hermana Letendre to be the first Hermanas in Dos Hermanas. Everyone was very excited.
And next we have Hermana Escobar hugging someone. I think that is her trainer, Hermana Rojas who is hugging her back. This was fun to introduce them with everyone in the mission home.
Dos Hermanas in Dos Hermanas!
And Dos Hermanas in Sevilla. Great day for the Hermanas!
We ended the day after great instruction from the Ayudantes and Presidente Clegg. Hermana Torres and Hermana Vasquez came to give me a good-night hug. The smiles of our hermanas radiate so much light. Angels were among us in the mission home.
The next two days were filled with teaching and instruction done by each companionship on the 8 fundamental lessons from the missionary department. We learned so much from each other and know that our Hermanas are even more equipped to teach and preach and work as missionaries do.
Fitting all twenty of them in our living room along with the Massaros and the Stevens took some real organization. But we all loved it and felt the spirit with us throughout the leadership training.
Hermanas like to take pictures. Notice all the cameras on automatic.
Hermana Perera and Hermana Moreno looked adorable in their floral skirts. Two wonderful Hermanas who have loved being companions. Hermana Perera has done a wonderful job in training Hermana Moreno.
At the end of the conference Presidente Clegg had them stand up and companionship by companionship informed them of the transfers. There were a few surprises but the reality is that every Hermana is a great Hermana to serve with, so no tears here.
And talk about twins, Hermana Letendre and I have the same pair of earings. We just had to show them off. Say cheese!
And here they are, all 20 of them. 20 of the best Hermanas you will find anywhere. They are all so dedicated to doing the best they can. We love them for it and know they are giving all they can to serve the people in Southern Spain.
And so for a few days, we heard lots of laughter, experienced lots of hugs and witnessed many smiles. The light of Christ was so evident in their eyes. Hermanas are such an important part of the missionary force throughout the world. We can't imagine what it would be like if they weren't here. Les queremos!