Everything Going Great

Dear Family,

Well it sounds like there has been a lot of excitement going on with Jared getting home from his mission. It is crazy that time has gone by so fast. It sounds like Jared gave a really good homecoming talk. To answer a few of your questions…… Our mission president is getting to El Salvador tomorrow, then he will be flying into Belize on the 4th of July. I think we are going to take him around to a few places close by for he and his wife to get the feel of Belize. It’s the rainy season right now, so we have been getting quite a bit of rain.It is kind of fun to be out working when it is pouring rain. Not very many people come to church when that happens though. That’s ok though. We will figure out how to get past that. Some of our investigators are progressing fairly well, but we are going to focus on finding a lot more investigators this week so we can have more. We had some that made it to church this week. Five of them came, and a couple were a pretty big surprise. There was one lady that we had contacted earlier in the week, but had not been able to find her after that. Whenever we passed by, she wasn’t home. We had invited her to church that day that we saw her, and then on Sunday, she decided to come. It was awesome to see her there. The even better part was that she brought a friend with her! It was a miracle to have someone disappear, then just show up to church with a friend.

I went on interchanges this week as well to the city of Belmopan with Elder Eggers. We had a super successful interchange. In the two days that I was there with him, 10 people accepted a baptismal date and we found 21 new investigators. 17 of those 21 were found in one day! It was an extremely successful interchange. I have never found that many new people to teach in one day before. We were both exhausted when we finished the day, but we felt great about the work we had done.

We had a really cool experience after I emailed you last Monday. We were driving along the ocean, when out of the corner of my eye, I saw something that looked like a big fish jump out of the water. I pulled over to the side of the road and we got out for a minute to see if it jumped again. A few seconds later, a dolphin jumped out of the water and was swimming around. It was awesome!!!! We stood there and watched it for a few minutes, and it jumped out of the water several times. I wanted to jump in the water and go swim with it pretty bad! Haha. We got a couple pictures of it, but not of it jumping out of the water. It made my day that we saw one though. That was one of the things that I have been hoping to see ever since I got here to Belize. 

Well I hope you all had a great week! I love you all!

Love,

Elder Black

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Staying in Belize with Elder Hacking

Dear Family,

Well this week is changes week. Elder Hacking and I are going to be staying together another change. We are both pretty excited about it. He has been an awesome companion and we get along really well. We work hard together and keep each other motivated. We are also going to be getting a new mission president this next change. He is coming a little bit late though, so we won’t see him for another couple weeks. It will be really sad to see President and Sister Hintze go, but I am also excited to meet President and Sister Adams. There will be some interesting changes going on in the next little while. Each mission president is different and it will be neat to see how the mission changes with a new mission president.

We had a huge rainstorm that hit us yesterday. It was raining all night and all morning really hard. When we went to go pass for our investigators, there was 8 or 9 inches of water in the street………… and some of it was the sewer water that was spewing out of the sewer. We always say that your wife gets more attractive for sweating and getting rained on…………. so I think I was racking up some extra brownie points in the future wife attractiveness category! Hahaha. We only got one investigator to church and most of the members didn’t come either, but it was still a good day! They will definitely be coming next week. It was pretty having a rainstorm like that here. It raised the river up a lot here!

We also had to do a lot of driving this past week. There were some missionaries that came and left from Belize a little bit early, so we played musical companions for a couple days. We drove all over Belize. They were pretty long days, and it was a bit of a bummer to be out of our area so much, but we still had a good time. The mission is just great no matter what happens. It is a place that I am learning to adapt to any situation that may come.

Well I hope you guys had a great week as well! I love you all!

Love,

Elder Black

Evelyn’s Baptism

Dear Family,

Well this week ended up being a really good one! Evelyn (the one that was doubting the need to get baptized again) got another answer and decided to get baptized, so we baptized her yesterday. She has been ready for it for a long time, but just has been holding off. On Friday, we went and taught her a little more about temples and the relationship between temples and family history work. We talked about the fruits of the spirit in Galatians, and the combination of them peaked her interest a lot and she started asking a lot more questions about the temple and her baptism. After we left, she read in Galatians about the fruits of the spirit, but had a bit of a hard time understanding it. She closed the Bible and knelt down to pray and ask God to help her have a better understanding about what He wanted her to do. She opened the Bible back up and ended up opening to Matthew 3 and reading about the story of Christ’s baptism. That is the second time she has prayed before reading and opened up to a chapter about baptism. It was then that she understood that she needed to be baptized again and receive the holy ghost. We weren’t entirely sure if her baptism was going to happen on Sunday or not, but we are extremely happy that it did. She has a strong testimony that the gospel is true and of the restoration. Her last doubt was finally put to rest and she made that decision to be baptized!

We also had our last multi zone conference with President and Sister Hintze this week. This is their last change with us in the mission. We are going to be getting a new mission president in a couple weeks. I am excited to meet the new president, President Adams, but am sad to see President and Sister Hintze go. They don’t live to far from us at home though, so I will get to go visit them when I get back. They talked a lot in the multi zone about how the mission is a refining fire. It is here that we learn how to be better people and truly converted to the gospel. It is not, however, a place that we will achieve perfection. That was something that helped me a lot. Out here, I demand perfection out of myself a lot, and have gotten frustrated with myself when something doesn’t turn out how I was wanting. I am realizing that I just need to try my best and if I do my part, and things don’t turn out how I was thinking, that is ok. My goal is to become a consecrated missionary, not perfect. The multi zone conference was a great reminder of that. We taught for about 90 minutes as well. Our main focus was on being a consecrated missionary. As Elder Christofferson says….. “The five steps to a consecrated Christian life are: purity, work, respect for ones physical body, service, and integrity.” I think those same things apply to being a consecrated missionary.

Other than that, we just worked a little in our area, and had to help out with a bunch of missionaries that were in the hospital. We missed a little bit of working time as a result of it, but we tried to spend as much time as we could working. We had to run a missionary back to his area from the hospital, and do a few things at the hospital. All the missionaries that were there are doing a lot better now though.

Well I hope you all have a great week! Love you!

Love,

Elder Black

 

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Evelyn’s Baptism

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With President and Sister Hintze

A Visit to Corozal

Dear Family,

That is awesome that you guys had such a good conference. I am glad that you are looking for missionary opportunities to help the missionaries out. We are trying to get members here to do the same thing here. The church is fairly new here though, so they don’t really understand why it is so important that they do that. We are working on trying to change that little by little though. We have shared the scripture in Acts 19 with her multiple time. A member shared it with her as well. There is not really anything holding her back from getting baptized now other than her doubt about being baptized again. We even shared D&C 22 with her. It is just up to her to make that decision now. We want it to be her decision, but she is definitely ready to be baptized. We are going to keep encouraging her though. It is just a matter of time though. She has a testimony and everything. 

This week, I went to Corozal on interchanges. It is extremely pretty there and I had a great time. The ocean water there is a really pretty green color. It is a place that I want to go back swimming someday. We stopped really fast when we were on our way back to Belize City and took a couple pictures. 

We have our last multi-zone with President Hintze coming up on Thursday, so we are going to be getting a new mission president pretty soon. I think he is going to be coming around the first of July. This week has gone by really fast and I don’t feel like we did much out of the regular mission work. We worked hard and the mission is great. Love you!

Love,

Elder Black

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Beautiful Belize

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I used the vivid colors setting on my camera to be able to see the water color really well. It made us look kind of orange, but the camera wasn’t capturing the water color without that setting.