Monday, November 30, 2015

VICTORY!

Date:  November 30, 2015
Area:  Tucuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 104

I have finished my last week in the mission. I´m coming home. It´s a weird thing though, I know it is happening but my mind can´t seem to comprehend it because I´ve been a missionary for so long.

Anyway, This was what my last week was all about, and what a final week it was.



Thank you all for your support and love and I look foreward to talking to everyone. You may have wanted more from my last week, but did you really expect more? (I will be writing an end mission thing later for those who actually did expect more.)

Homeward Bound,
Elder Jered Lamont North (Laj Saqi Noq´)

Monday, November 23, 2015

Up on the mountain tops

Date:  November 23, 2015
Area:  Turucu, Guatemala
Companion:  Edler McEntee
Week 102

This week I did divisions with my Zone leader Elder Soriano, I got to go up to Senahu for the first and last time in my mission.  Senahu is a part of the Polochic that is way up in the mountains and we call that the mountain district and boy did it feel good up there. It was raining more and it was very cool and not hot whatsoever. We had some good lessons up there but honestly it felt more like a vacation for me, I was out of my area so I wasn´t the one taking the lead on where to go and what to say in the lessons so I got to relax more than usual. We met with a really cool less active named Enrique, he had some doubts about the church pop up and so we visited him and did our best to answer is questions but most of all we told him that he should really take his questions to his Father in Heaven who will not only give him the answers, but will give them in a way that is completely unique to him and in a way that he knows they are true.  Senahu is a really pretty place, how I describe it, it actually feels like you are in a town IN the mountains instead of in a town SURROUNDED by mountains as I have felt for the most part of my mission.


Other than that works goes on like usual, Juana and her daughters are very excited for her baptism. We did get to go to a graduation party, which is to say that we went and ate a meal to celebrate the graduation of one of our investigators. Here in Guatemala when there is an event like a birthday or something you invite pretty much everyone you know just to share a meal with them. That´s pretty cool.

I´m now starting my final week in the mission and it feels weird but honestly I´ve been a missionary for quite a while that it just feels natural to keep going for a little longer.

I love you all,
Elder North

Monday, November 16, 2015

Water that falls down


Date:  November 16, 2015
Area:  Tucuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 101

A couple things this week. I´ll start from the end, which means today.

So, today I went on what could probably be my last major adventure while on the mission, we went to see the giant waterfall again and this time it was a lot bigger than the last two times I went, it was really good and we didn´t get ambushed by lamanites like we did the first time. Due to that I´m emailing a little later than usual.

This week we also celebrated the 20th birthday of my companion Elder McEntee. The members here in Tucuru are just absolutely amazing, they went all the way to Tactic (About an hour and a half away) to buy a really awesome chocolate cake for him, of which we all enjoyed although with really rich chocolate cakes you can´t really eat a lot all at once, but we ignored that and had really big pieces anyway. It was that day that I was eating some nachos and I must have bit on one really oddly because my back tooth chipped. It suddenly felt odd and I felt like something was missing, sure enough my tooth had chipped quite a large chunk off, but it doesn´t hurt, I´m hoping that on the way out of the mission I can stop by the mission dentist and see if they can do anything about that, if not I´ll just have to wait until I get home and see my own dentist.
Sunday we had a special District conference, it was a special conference for all of Guatemala where the area presidency spoke as well as Elder David A. Bednar of the quorum of the twelve apostles. They focused on the Sabbath day and how we can help others stay in the church once they have gotten baptized, in other words. Retention of converts. A big part of that is the role that members play in helping investigators join and stay in the church. As my time as a full time missionary comes to an end I look to ways that I can still help in the missionary work but as a member. It´s certainly a different part of the work but it is really important as well. References from members are more than three fourths of the baptisms of missionaries I believe.
Things are going well, I´m about ready to go home but it´s just a little time more in the field and I´m going to really stick it out and love it and love the people and the place because I don´t know when I´ll be able to see them again.

Thank you all for keeping up on my mission adventures, just a couple more and then I´ll be having return missionary adventures.

Love,
Elder Norte


Monday, November 9, 2015

Week of unexpected and expected travels.

Date:  November 9, 2015
Area:  Tacuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 98



This week seemed to fly by because we had to do some more traveling than the usual. I´ll just tell about those first.
So, the unexpected travel was because of an emergency change. Not for me mind you, but for other Elders and we had to escort Elder Flores to Cobán so that he wouldn´t be alone and so we had to take a little trip to Cobán, while there we did get to take advantage of the brand new Taco Bell that is up and boy was that good, I was craving Taco Bell the rest of the week, it´s amazing how different Taco Bell actually is from the food here that says it sells tacos all the time. A taco though can be many different things. With meat or without.

The other travels were expected, we had zone meeting this week and it was my final zone meeting, with that I did get plenty of mail. All of my happy birthday mail came, and they were from the Holden's, Karoline, Grandma Mary, Mom and I got a letter from Sister Hibbs and from Rowan. They were all very cool and I loved them, thank you all.

Since we were running around everywhere we didn´t have as much time in our area as we thought we would this week but we did some great work. We found Juana and her two little children and they are now set for baptism my last week, which means, the 28th of November. One of Juana´s daughters is actually baptized already but she couldn´t due to her living circumstances but now she can.

With that we also found Matilde, she really wants to be baptized but has to get married first, that´s actually not that hard and we have some major help here in Tucuru, the hard part for her is that her husband works in Honduras a month at a time and only comes back home for about three days. It´s a really rough schedule, but that´s how they have it. So we´re figuring that out but we believe she will be able to get baptized by the end of December.
An update on Olga, she is still unsure about things, she really wanted to know more about Joseph Smith so we got to gether with her member friends and we watched the Joseph Smith movie and actually ended up just talking about gospel stuff for an hour after. The only thing that annoys me with her is that she isn´t reading, she needs to do that.

We celebrated a couple birthdays this week as well, I was actually fasting one of those day and didn´t participate in eating the cake, a little sad but it was all right.

Answers to some questions:

My clothes have held up fine, I´ve lost a couple of buttons though. My shoes.... Well, you´ll see.

I don´t really know my neighbors, They are friendly though, their dog is not.

I am sleeping like a baby, crying and turning all night. But really, I´m sleeping really well.

I usually have my bowl of cereal in the morning.

I learned this week about eternal progression, that it is only possible with marraige and the family. I´ve thought about home a couple times this week, hehe.

That´s about it for this week,
Love you
Elder Norte

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

There are mountains to climb

Rubber tree
Date:  November 1, 2015
Area:  Tacuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 97

This week we had some fun climbing mountains learning more about Tucuru, one such trip actually wasn`t that efficient and we ended up actually doing nearly nothing the entire day but we had another day where we visited a little village up in the mountain and found plenty of new people and a family that wants to learn more and to get baptized but she`s not married to her `husband` but really a marriage isn`t that hard to do if both parties are willing, it`s when there is a divorce or something else that has to happen at the same time is when it gets hard for us.
I actually wasn`t there for that trip because I was in divisions in La Tinta with Elder Ortiz from Chile, it was interesting because I got the opportunity to go to church in La Tinta yesterday and see all the members and even my converts that  I got to know at the start of my mission. It was a bit odd seeing everyone grown up and it was cool for them to see that I have learned Spanish and Q`eqchi` and have conquered for the most part my fear of talking even though I would still prefer not to talk a lot it`s not provoked by a fear or insecurity anymore.
I had the realization that that is how it might be when I return home and I see everyone back home and how much they have grown and they also get to see how much I have grown. my converts were really happy to see me and I was really happy to see them, I can only imagine the joy I will feel upon seeing my family again, it reminds me of a really special moment in my life which included my family. The family is the most important part of our lives and the most important and significant part in the plan of our father in heaven it is worth more than rubies to develope, fix or whatever needs to be done to have a good relationship with all the members of your family, parents and siblings.
Update on our investigators, we have that new lady which I havn`t yet that wants to get baptized but needs to get married, we`re going to be helping her with that but first we need to talk with her `husband` to see how he feels about the whole thing.



Olga is progressing well, she is coming to church now but she is having trouble with the small things like reading, they do seem small but by small means great things are brought to pass. Things always start small before they get big, like a snowball rolling down a hill. (surprisingly I still know what a snowball is)
Our other investigators that are likely to progress are still on the edge of making the decision if they want to really go forward or not, we shall see. there is certainly a lot for Elder McEntee and I to do.
No letters this week, but we will be getting those in a matter of days, Elder Kortsen went to Cobàn today and will be picking those up for Elder McEntee and I. We`re always excited to get letters although I must remind all you guys out there at home to stop sending me letters at least, stop sending them to the mission because chances are that they will get here and I`ll be home, so my recommendation is write those letters and send them to my home.
I love you all, keep going strong.
Elder North

This is from Elder McEntee's letter home this week. (Always fun to get the companions view on things)
Today is the Day of the Dead! Entonces, Feliz Dia! Not the best day for P-Day to fall on since nothing will be open today but we were at least lucky enough to find this internet cafe open! I hope you all had a great Halloween! Its November, that happened fast!After going almost 5 days without running water in the house it finally came back this week so that was reason for minor celebration! After hearing that you may be asking yourself “Does that mean he didnt shower for almost 5 days…?”. In which case my answer would be No, I didnt shower for almost 5 days…. But come on people, what do you expect me to do! hah I can promise you though, I am now a clean human being! Minor events this week: flame throwered a turantula. Scaled a super steep mountain for 3 hours straight. I placed a baptimal date. One day I actually cooked meals for both my companion and I, all 3 meals. One night we had dinner at two different members house, it was awesome. This week we had divisions. Elder Gonzalez (yes my old companion) and I were in Tucuru for two days, while my companion went to La Tinta. It was fun being with Elder Gonzalez again, it felt good to teach with him again! Plus it helped having him in some lessons with our investigators that speak Spanish. He is a great District Leader and Im so grateful, especially now, to of had him as my trainer, he taught me basically all the Spanish I know. As always with weeks where we have divisions this week went really fast!My companion, Elder North, and I are really about to get things rolling in Tucuru. Its exciting to have our schedules full of people that want to learn and actually WANT to progress. I cant express in words how much I love what I’m teaching
and how much I just want to share it with everyone! I wish I wasn’t so shy with my beliefs in High School, I just want all my friends at home and everyone to know that I KNOW this church to be the true church of Jesus Christ on the Earth today with a living Prophet and Apostles to lead and guide us. I know that if one would just pray with the slightest bit of faith concerning the truth of what Im saying that they will receive a confirmation by means of the Holy Ghost that it is ALL true. Jesus Christ is our Savior, the Redeemer of the world and our advocate with the Father. He came to this earth to take upon the sins of the world and loves each one of us more than we could imagine. Eternal Happiness is only accomplished through His Everlasting Atonement and I feel such a responsibility and desire to share that happiness with all of you! I know it may seem like Ive changed from the kid you all knew, and I guess that's true in some ways. My beliefs haven't changed but I do have a stronger testimony of the things I knew before and Im not afraid to share anymore. To all my buddy’s back home and good friends and really just everyone, I want to apologize right now for not sharing my testimony with you before. How selfish of me to have held back what I know to be true! I love you all, thanks for everybody’s support and love.  Love Elder MCENTEE



If you would like to send Jered a welcome home letter that would be cool.  Send it to our home address.
Jered North
4111 Red Tail Drive
Riverton, UT 84065

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Baptism and long bus ride

Date:  October 27, 2015
Area:  Tucuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 96

So, Elder McEntee and I had some interesting adventures this week and all those adventures started with interviews with our awesome President of the mission Presidente Curtiss and his wife Sister Curtiss. I felt like my interviews with them were shorter than normal but no less fantastic, I did ask President if I could renew my temple recommend but unfortunately he wasn´t caring around the papers to do it, so we have to find another time to do that. I have a new assignment from sister Curtiss to study about Pride and being humble for the remaining time I am on my mission, usually the assignments from her are for the next three months, but the fact is that I´m going to be out of the mission in less than that.

About those adventures, Elder McEntee´s tooth was hurting him our first week and Sister Curtiss always asks about our health in the interviews so he told her that his tooth was hurting that first week but now it was better, Sister Curtiss in her love and concern right then set up an appointment with the dentists. The dentists though, work in the capital, so we had to go there this Monday and that´s where the long bus rides come from. It takes two hours for us to get to Cobán from Tucuru and then four hours to get to the Captial from Cobán, and we had to do that four hour ride twice in one day, because we went, they found out that nothing was wrong with his tooth because the pain he felt was actually from sinus issues as we were adjusting to the new area and then we went back, so that was a lot of bus rides and that sums up our day Monday. Go in, get checked, get out. Hehe, Oh well, better safe than sorry I guess.

Here are some pictures of my house.  I think this is the nicest house in the whole mission!
 

Anyway, other than that lovely adventure we did have a baptism this week, the baptism of Beverly Cristabel Balsells Xol, she has been being taught for the last two years I believe and is now ready to be baptized and it was a very happy day, the service was simple and actually started way later than planned, but we got it all figured out and we even confirmed her that same day. I have learned that every baptism in the mission is a very special  
miracle.
Hole to the secret gnome world.
We have several investigators, friends of a member, that are very interested in listening to us and they seem ready, for a missionary it is always a treat to teach people that are truly ready, they have questions and they follow through with their commitments and it´s so easy, since the spirit has prepared them we pretty much just walk in teach and then that´s it, they do the rest and get baptized and we get to see another special miracle.
My new ride

Another investigator we have that we are propably going to drop is a very kind guy that is named Marco Antonio, we met him through contacting and he was very nice and listend to us and we introduced ourselves and got to know one another, we asked if he had a church and he said yes, we found out later that he is actually the pastor of the church, now that´s not going to stop us from sharing our message if someone will listen to us and we gave him a Book of Mormon and he promised us that he will read it. Now the question is what will he do once he reads the Book of Mormon and prays about it, I´m very sure that he will recieve an answer if he asks with faith but once he gets that answer what will he do with it, will he follow it or will he stay with being pastor of his church. It all depends on what he feels and what he´s willing to do, because if he´s not willing to change then we can´t really do anything but I do believe that even if we drop him that we have planted a seed that will definately be able to have fruit in the future.

So, that was our week, busy with the baptism and then going to the capital, it was a bit weird being there for a little bit and knowing that I´m going to make that trip again soon and when I do that it will be on the way home. I´m excited to be home but I´m also very excited to end out my mission strong.

I love you all, keep on truckin´
Elder Norte

We finally got Elder North's release date.  We had hoped he might be home for Thanksgiving but it is not to be.  He will be home the next week on December 3rd.  Will keep you posted as to when his homecoming address will be.  Thanks for the love and support!


Monday, October 19, 2015

Tucuru, the beginning

Date: October 19, 2015
Area:  Tucuru, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder McEntee
Week 95

So here goes the beginning of the end, I´m in my last area, my last change my last companion and my last mountain walking legs. My companion is Elder McEntee, spelling is now correct, he is from Old Port Oregon and we get along just well. It´s interesting to be opening up an area, that means that both of us are new to the area and it makes things a little hard at first but the members here in Tucuru are really helpful and we´re getting plans together and we´re going to work hard.

Although I actually didn´t take any pictures this week somehow I have plenty of things to take pictures of, the house for one is awesome, I wish I had a before and after picture of when we cleaned it but it´s now just amazing and it feels nice and cozy. The area of Tucuru itself feels homey for some reason.  I am in the Senahu Zone and I go to La Tinta for P-days which is about an hours drive away and that is no joke!  :) 

We don´t have many investigators on our plate right now but we have one that is ready for the waters and her name is Beverly Balses, she has been being taught by the missionaries for a bit and has accepted a baptism date and then it fell and now we have another one for her on the 24th of Octuber, she is more decided on this one and I believe she´ll get there. We had a member with us, Daniel and he was the one that told us that she was more decided on the date than the ones before it where he said she was more wishy washy on accepting it.
We´ve done some contacting in Tucuru and I have noticed that the people are a little different than what I´m used to. The people speak more Spanish as well so I´ve been pulling out the Spanish lessons from the shelf and dusting them off and polishing them up, by no means do I think I´m bad at Spanish, I just didn´t use it in lessons that much before. Now I´m using it on the daily.

I've been helping my companion, Elder McEntee learn in both languages, he´s doing really well, he has about four months out (Like my brother Mikel) and he started with a Mexican companion, with me it´s a lot easier to explain things and I feel like it´ll let him learn faster even if we don´t speak a lot together in either language while at home. Trading better understanding with speaking time.

We´re still getting used to things here, but it´s all going well and the area is pretty big so it doesn´t look like we´re going to have a lack of things to do and places to go. It´s going to be a fun and work filled final to my mission.

I expect to get mail with interviews with my mission president that is coming up but I don´t know if they will bring it, we´ll see. The next time I expect to get mail is our Zone meeting the first week of November, getting mail while out in the Polochic takes some time.

I should find out tomorrow or Wednesday when I am actually coming home because we´re going to have interviews with President Curtiss, most likely will be December 3rd though.

I love you all, get better everyone and avoid more accidents, I´m praying for you,

Elder North

Monday, October 12, 2015

The last of the changes

Date:  October 12, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 94

I have gotten a change and I will be going to Tucuru to die, my murderer will be Elder McIntee (Not quite sure on spelling) He is a North American and I don´t really know where he´s from yet, I can get you all that information next week.

When they finish their mission they call it dying.  And the companion they end with "kills" them.  Gotta love mission lingo.

The start of the week was fairly normal, visiting people. We have seen progress in the rest of the children of Ernesto and Matilde, my converts but it´s still actually slow going for them, I don´t quite know what they are waiting for or why they don´t really want to listen to us but some people need more time than others and they are coming around, it´s really cool to see them coming together as a family, the littlest one in the family, Luvia is going to be turning eight soon and will be baptized at the end of the month. I´m very excited for that but unfortunately I won´t be in the area, I will be back in the Polochic valley where it is warmer.

The last part of the week, The last two days really were about saying farewells to people and packing my stuff, which are fitting really well, I don´t think I´ll have problems being within the weight limits of the flight.

I´m now starting the last leg of my journey here in the mission and there is still plenty of work to do, I´m excited to be in a new area, I do love the people in Tanchi though, they are amazing and the branch is growing steadily, they are going to be starting the extension to the chapel really soon and that is a very happy thing for all the members, it was getting pretty crowded some Sundays.

Well, what can I say, I´m ready for the end, in the sense that I´m ready to work it towards the end. I thank you all for the support!

I did get some letter this week, one letter to be exact from Aunt Karoline and little Mary.

Go Getcha some!
Elder North

Monday, October 5, 2015

Conference and Birthday wishes

Date:  October 5, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 93

For those of you who do not know this week was the General Conference of the church of latter-day saints. It´s a conference we do as a church twice a year to hear from the church leaders as a whole church all over the world the talks are inspiring, and the counsel is always worthy of following and meditating  as they all are focused on Jesus Christ and his teachings.

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/sessions/2015/10?cid=HP_SU_10-4-2015_dPTH_fGC_xLIDyL1-C_&lang=eng

My favorite talks include the talk by Elder Holand where he talked about mothers, they´re important roles in the lives of their children and how impactful their prayers and love can be, I love my Mom!

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/1997/04/because-she-is-a-mother?lang=eng

There was another talk all about Women specifically, and although it was mostly directed to Women it was very clear that one of the main messages was that keeping sacred covenants gives us protection and gives us the power we need to help other.

In many of the talks I heard the words ´Need to´ and it is apparent that we need to step it up and become better than we were before to help others and to withstand the many temptations that exist and are increasing in this world.

The last talk of the general conference was very powerful by Elder David A. Bednar where he shared his love for those in the quorum of the twelve that he has seen pass and their testimonies and the invitations to study their teachings from their ministry because they are truly words inspired by our heavenly father.

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/watch/2015/10?lang=eng&vid=4531928836001&cid=12

Another teaching that I felt like was said a lot but not exactly in the forefront was about how much our Heavenly Father loves us and wants us to progress and succeed in our lives, He is always there and is always willing to help us despite our many mistakes. I´ve been learning through my mission a better understanding of the love parents have for their children, whether it be our Heavenly Father or our earthly parents, it is incredible how much children are loved and I am very blessed to be born of goodly parents that have taught me the gospel and have withstood my rebellious behavior at times and have loved me despite of me.

So, if you missed conference sessions or if you saw them, go and review them and study them and meditate some of the teachings and apply them in your lives. What use is learning something if it isn´t applied?

So, this week was all about preparing for the general conference, visiting everyone we had invited and making sure that they went, we didn´t have that big of a turnout on Saturday and only a few of our investigators came Sunday, but oh how much they learned.

I would like to thank all of those that have given me wonderful birthday wishes, I am turning 20 this coming Sunday and have planned a little dinner with some awesome member because it might also be my last week in Tanchi, changes are coming up again, but with changes I might stay and end my mission here, we´ll see about that.

No mail this week, but that´s alright, and just a reminder, due to the delay that comes from sending mail to another country this week and next week are probably the last weeks to send me mail because after that the mail will probably get here after I have gone home and that would be a little sad. So, that doesn´t mean that one cannot send me a letter, just send it to my home and I´ll get it once I get there.

I see my president face to face about every two weeks now and it´s always a pleasure. A lot more than when I was farther away.

I look foreward to family time, feeling cold (although I think once I feel cold again I´ll want to come right back to Guatemala weather.) food. Probably one of the biggest things I miss is carpet. The first two things I will do when I get home are 1. Go to the living room and make a carpet angel and 2. Take a long hot shower. In all my time here I have had two hot showers.

I love you all! Go getcha some!

Elder North

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

A hard week

chicken head soup
Date:  September 28, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 92

This week was hard, missionary work is hard work, but that happens sometimes, we´ve been keeping our spirits up and moving forward, despite the hard week and feeling like no progress we have been keeping our spirits up and have found many of new investigators and we are excited to continue teaching them.


spider
We certainly saw a change Saturday, we started to actually tell the investigators how serious we are, that we are here to help them be baptized in the true church of Jesus Christ and that we may joke sometimes and have fun sometimes but our purpose is to help them learn the truth and if they don´t want to listen or act then we need to switch our priority to others that are ready to hear the word of God. We started doing this to our older investigators and the spirit in the lessons have really changed and has gotten stronger. we have been able to have several powerful lessons and we hope to have many people come to the General Conference this coming weekend.
Just think, we do this General Conference only twice a year and we get to hear from the mouths of Prophets and Apostles of Jesus Christ, the people in the Old Testament traveled very, very large distances to listen to the Prophets and to Jesus. What comes to mind is the story of Naamaan the leper, he went a large distance to hear to words of the prophets to be cured of his leprosy and because of his faith and action he was healed. In these days we don´t have to walk or travel nearly as far two times a year to hear directly from the Lord it would be a very large waste to let this opprotunity pass. Invite others so they can recieve answer to the deep questions of their souls even if they don´t realize yet that they have such questions.

I love you all, I got three letters from my Mom, three from Grandma Mary and one from Grandma North. I very much enjoyed the little baby me that Grandma Mary sent. I keep you all in my prayers.

Elder North

Monday, September 21, 2015

Here comes the 'lasts'

Date:  September 21, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 91

It has now come to that point where things start happening for the last time in my mission, there are still a couple months left so there´s no time to be thinking about home.... It´s almost an impossible task to keep every single thought about home from coming in, but as long as we´re working hard it´s not too hard to keep focused.
This week I had the last of my Multi Zone conferences. They are always pretty awesome to go to, this time we had a three main subjects that were talked about. One was our focus on our goal for the month of October, which is 100 baptisms mission wide, I do believe I already mentioned that. We talked about how to focus different aspects of our work and day to accomplish his goal. Basically we made goals to reach a goal. breaking things down.
We then talked about finances, it´s apparently a problem in the mission. I havn´t had trouble with finances, but we were able to get some awesome advice that will help in the mission and after it.

Last thing we talked about was making the Sabbath day a more meaningful and spiritual day for us and for our investigators. Making the sacrament meeting a better run affair so that the spirit can be there in full force. We were able to find a couple things that can help our little branch here, having back ups for the sacrament and other little things. With some things in life it´s not about the big things but about the little things and little changes and corrections.

The weather is getting a little colder, but not nearly as cold as back home I´m sure, it means I sleep a little more comfortably but I´ve never had much trouble with sleeping. This week we have the plan to invite everyone, and I mean everyone, to the coming General conference. we already printed out about 150 invitation cards just to give to people and to help us contact. I recommend that all you guys out there should do something similar, by that I mean invite people to this special event. We only get the chance twice a year to hear directly from the prophet today and the apostles in this time, so don´t you miss it and tell your friends!

We´ve been doing wonderful here and I want to thank all of you out there giving me and all the other missionaries out in the field support, we all very much appreciate and your prayers and thoughts really do count.

I love you all,
Elder Jered North

P.S. Sorry for the lack of bug pictures, and pictures in general, I´ll get plenty next week.

Monday, September 14, 2015

Another week in Guatemala

Date:  September 14, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 90

The start of our week was pretty interesting, we had dentists come over to Tanchi and I got to help them with a bit of translating, the four older guys know some Spanish, so I didn´t have to do some translating into Spanish but I got to do a little into Q´eqchi´, although the basic vocabulary you need for a dentists appointment is ´Open your mouth´ or ´close your mouth´ so it wasn´t that complicated to do, but it was fun. We got to see a whole bunch of teeth get pulled out and I really realized how great it is that we have dentists and we have things that help us take care of our teeth. I didn´t have anything done on my mouth because nothing is hurting me and so I thought it wouldn´t be that bad to just wait until I get back home and do the whole dentist appointment.

This week went well, one of the biggest happy moments of the week was Patricia came to church, she is the daughter of my converts  Hernesto and Matilde. We´ve been trying to get one of their other children to come to church focusing on the importance of families being together and that in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints we believe that families can be together forever which is a wonderful blessing and I really want them to have that. We hope to be able to put a baptismal date with her soon. Our mission also has a goal for the month of October to get 100 baptisms mission wide. We´re all actually pretty excited to go for it.

I also had the opportunity this week to go on divisions with Elder Reyes in Chicojl. It was nice to meet new people and to see a new area, I´ve been in Tanchi for a while and I love the area and the people but sometimes you just need a break from the same thing for a day. Elder Reyes and I were able to do some awesome work and we walked a lot, but we were able to find a lady named Zoila and she was really interested. She wasn´t able to go  to church last week due to an activity in the school she works at, but she´s awesome, it was also a little odd teaching in Spanish. It was a fun day.

In other news, no new mail that I know of, but that could change as I go to the office. Time is going by rather quickly now but there are still plenty of things to do and lots of people to teach.

I love you all and I thank you for all the support.
Elder North

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Your vote counts


It´s time to start another awesome change in Tanchi and this week went by quickly, yet slowly. One of the reasons it went by really slowly was because we didn´t have a district meeting so we didn´t have to go to Cobán during the week and that in turn made it feel like the week was a little longer, yet it still went by.

We´ve been contacting a bit more than usual, gotta find those people that are ready to get baptized. We found a man named Raul this week and he seems pretty chill, we didn´t teach him much when we first past by his house because he was busy but we were able to introduce ourselves and put up a time for a return visit.
We have roadkill here too
On our return visit we went over the Restoration and he really seemed to understand really well that there needs to be a prophet on the earth so that God can talk to his people and give his commandments. God talks to the prophet directly and gives him his commandments and then the prophets gives it to the rest of us.

Unfortunately we didn´t have very many people come to church this week because there were elections. Can´t really blame anyone that September 6th fell on a Sunday, (the independence day of Guatemala) so many people were over by the voting houses that were set up, we still had a very good attendance in church. I´m going to be happy not to have to hear all the propaganda anymore. They have posters and stuff and trucks that drive around the villages blaring music and stuff from the different parties.

I did get plenty of mail this week, I got package from Mom, I thought it was humorous that it said it was the last package I would get on my mission. I´m fine with that though. I got another package from Jessy Salas.
 
Letters from Grandma Mary, The stake and Mom and Amber! Thank you all for the letters, they bring a smile to my face.

Love you all.
Elder Jered North

Monday, August 31, 2015

Missionary week

Date:August 31, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres  
Week 88

This week ended up being the week of visiting a whole lot of members! Which is just as much a part of missionary work as finding new people to teach and bring to the church, we are here to invite ALL to come to Christ, not just those that don´t know about the gospel but those that do know and are having a bit of trouble staying on, we´re here to help all those stay fast to the iron rod.

As for the title this past week we had the missionaries come to Tanchi. Not us, we´ve been here, but the Catholic missionaries. The Catholic missionaries come for a week and there are a lot of them, we actually didn´t see much and apparently they passed out little invitations the week before and we didn´t get one.  From what the members said they just visited for a little bit and did a prayer and then left, yet we passed some houses which we knew were being visited and they had visits for over an hour. I guess they were here as well to strengthen their members.  We found it a little funny that they were coming only for a week and from distances of about 10 miles from other areas where we come from so far away and we´re here for two years, but hey, everyone has their idea of what missionary work is. So I can´t really say anything about it.  Although I did get kind of annoyed because they had a little local band and during the whole week they would play very loudly late at night and launch rockets and play really loudly at 5 in the morning. I don´t like being woken up before my designated time to get up and I don´t like being forced to stay up late. We don´t even live that close to the Catholic church and it sounded like they were right next to us.  They have their beliefs of what they should do and so I can´t judge them. We believe that it isn't necessary to make a lot of noise in order to communicate with our God and having loud bands playing does not allow the spirit to be present because the fruits of the spirits are love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. ´Galations 5:22-23
I know that the spirit is felt the strongest in quite moments of meditation and study and I encourage all to study the scriptures and to meditate about them and to pray about them so you can learn to fell the Holy Spirit in your life because he will help guide you on the path that your heavenly father wants to be on.

Other news, I did not get a change and neither did my companion Elder Torres, so we will both be staying together in Tanchi another six weeks. It´s going to be a good six weeks.

I love you all,
Elder North

P.S. no mail this week

Noche de hermanamiento drinking some corn drink





Monday, August 24, 2015

Rotting mice and words of an Apostle

Date:  August 24, 2015
Area:  Tanchi, Guatemala
Companion:  Elder Torres
Week 87

This week has had some fun events. So, about a couple of weeks ago we were getting really annoyed with the present of some mice, they were making noises and eating our food, you know. Mice stuff. So we decided to get back at the little critters by putting poison out. It worked! They fell for the trap and ate the poison. About a week later an odd smell started arising, I know that smell, I thought to myself, and started looking around. Sure enough we found some rotting mice. Three to be exact. We won the fight yet they were trying to get back at us in a last ditch effort. We won though.

Our other most exciting event of the week was that we got to hear from Elder Russel M Ballard as he visited Honduras and we watched through satellite as he addressed all of the missionaries in Central America. He had some advice on what we can do to help the people as might be expected. He pushed the importance of declaring and sharing the truth of the Restoration and Joseph Smith as the prophet of the Restoration. He also had some advice on marriage, although that was something interesting to hear in a missionary setting. He said something like. ¨I know your not supposed to be thinking about marriage while on your mission, but think about it for a minute.¨ Some good humor from a wonderful servant of God.

For the work this week we got to find some new people and get them going on the wonderful journey of learning the truth, one in mention is Angelina, her husband is working far away which makes it hard to teach him, but we´re able to teach her and her children. They´re doing great, we have only had one lesson with them but I feel like they´re going to progress. We´ll see tomorrow when we really start teaching them. I´m optomistic though. A good attitude is one the keys to conquering the world.... Or your fears. Whichever one you want.

Other things..... Hmmmmm..... Letters, I did get three letters this week. One from Sister Barnson, although she has now returned home and two from Grandma Mary.

I love you all, send me some questions to answer I feel like my weekly report this week was actually really bland.... Sorry about that.

Elder North
jered.north@myldsmail.net

Or write me a real letter
Please do not use nick names on letters or packages. They have to go to the mission home and then be forwarded on. If you have a nick name on the letter it may never make it to him. THANKS
Send mail to:

Elder Jered North
Guatemala Cobán Mission
Apartado Postal #34
3ra Calle 2-02, Zona 3
Cobán AV 16001
Guatemala, Central America
It costs $1.15 to mail a letter to him. You can use regular envelops and stamps just make sure they equal $1.15. If it weights more than a regular letter you should take it to the post office to have it weighed.