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Monday, December 11, 2017

Almost a Jungly Chirstmas

This week was fun. We got a lot of work done and got some new investigators. We have some that are really close to baptism. This week is changes as well so I may have a new companion for Christmas. I'll let you know next week.

This week was really fun because it was a huge Holiday in Nicaragua. But even more so in my area, cuz my area is in the center of the Catholics here. And it was a catholic holiday. All day Thursday they were blowing off fireworks. From 5am on Thursday to 2am Friday they were doing fireworks. It was a madhouse. We went to the center of all the action to just have the experience. We went to the cathedral to do that. It was fun, and there was a light show. And afterwards, everyone went to houses that had alters to Mary and Asked for candies. Kind of like Halloween.

On Friday, nobody had to work, so everyone went to the beach to have some fun. So we didn't get that much done. That day.

We have an investigator named Jose that is really awesome and will hopefully get baptized soon!

Stay awesome!

-- 
-Elder Taylor



These are from the HUGE Catholic celebration called the Purizima






Sunday, December 10, 2017

Letter for Eagle Cliff Ward

Sorry its a bit late, but here you have it!

My name is Elder Lukas Taylor and I am currently serving in the Nicaragua Managua North Mission. I have just about 18 months here to be on the mission. And I am having a great time!

I have had many great experiences so far on my mission. I have been through alot of heat. (RIght now is summer here and its around 100° every day now) And I have also been through alot of rain, mud, and chased and bit by a few dogs. But everything is really awesome for me!

I would like to share an experience that has helped me a lot in the mission so far. I was in an area called Jalapa. This area is about 30 minutes away from Honduras. This area was smaller than a branch. When I got there in December of 2016 this area had less than a year of having missionaries. When I got there, the area was very very new. There were only 10 members in the whole area. And of those 10 only 5 were active. And so there was a lot of work to be done.

My companion and I went out trying our best to get new people to go to church. We worked all day contacting new people, and working with the 10 members in the area. It was actually really hard work. But the thing that was really cool for me was when we showed up to a majority of the people, they always let us into their homes and listened to our message. Many times these people had never even heard of the church. Not even the name "Mormons." With time we had 1 baptism in the area. And when Janurary came around, we still only had 10 to 15 people at church.

In January of this year, we had transfers and I got a new Companion. His name was Elder Alvarez. He and I worked well together and we could really get to know our investigators and all the people there alot better. When Februrary rolled around we started seeing the miricals and the fruits of our labors. We were able to baptize 10 people in that month. And the other companionship in this area as well could baptize 6 as well. 

But the best part was, that all of these people we were helping, all got testimonies of the church and stayed faithful. By the end of Februrary we got the assistance from 10 to 37 people, and we could feel the joy of the work. We can still see our fruits growing as this area is close to being a branch now. And we hope that Jalapa can keep on growing.

The Nicaraguan people area very humble and really willing to follow the Lord and do what is asked of them. That is a great trait that I have learned from them.

I know that this church is true and that if we choose the right we will be blessed. And I also know that the Book Of Mormon is the word of God and was Translated by Joseph Smith. I am greatful to be a missionary and know that every effort is worth it. Have a Merry Christmas and enjoy the snow for me!

In the Name of Jesus Christ...
-Elder Taylor

Monday, December 4, 2017

Pretty Solid Week

This week Elder Perry and I worked really hard so we could have success.

We found a lot of new people this week that are really positive that we hope can baptize before this year ends. We had 100 people at church and we almost had a baptism but we had to postpone it till this week. And hopefully if all goes well we could baptize 2 teens as well that are really awesome.

On Friday night, we made American food for the bishops family. We made mac&cheese and pb&js. They had never eaten those foods, so we made it for them. And they seemed to enjoy it!

We are working hard and having a good time here in Leon. We are gonna keep it up!

I'll have lots of pics next week! TTYL!

-- 
-Elder Taylor

Monday, November 27, 2017

Un Bautismo Milagroso

This past week was really good! We worked hard and the results showed.

On Tuesday we went to Lesly's house to make sure that she was ready for her baptism on Saturday and she said that she was, and her aunt who was also preparing for baptism told us that she would like to get baptized with her niece. So we told her that she can. And we got them both ready for this past Saturday.

We worked with them all week and we could help them get ready for Saturday. When the day came we went to go get them in their house to take them to the church, but we found them on the way there in a taxi. They were excited for the big day! I got to baptize both of them. The little girl Lesley was scared of the water and water getting in her ears, so we bought earplugs for her. And when she came out of the water she said, "Water didn't get in my ears!" and was really happy. And they got confirmed on Sunday at church.

All is going well here in the jungle. We didn't do anything for Thanksgiving, mainly just cuz it's not celebrated here. We did eat Subway though.

Till next week!
Pics to come!!!

-Elder Taylor





Monday, November 20, 2017

We Went To Chinandega

This past week was good, We had a lot of good visits and we have good people getting ready for baptism.

On Wednesday we went to Chinandega for a multi-zone. We left at 5:30am. We ate a good breakfast and got there in time for it to start. I got to see a lot of old comps(5)  and mission friends. So all was good in the hood. 

Elder Perry found out that for school he will be going home in March, so he will be going home a few months earlier than me. He seems excited for that news.

We had a lot of people that wanted to give us food this week. I was literally full for the entire week. But now I am just satisfied. Not full or hungry, just in the right place.

We had a girl that should have gotten baptized this past week, but she got sick, so this week we should have a baptism. She really seems happy to do it. Her name is Lesly.

That is about it. Thanksgiving is this week, but they don't celebrate it here, so life won't really change for me.

And no pics till next week, this computer doesn't want to download them.
PEACE OUT!

-Elder Taylor

Monday, November 13, 2017

First week in El Coyolar

This first week in my new area was really good! Elder Perry and I were MTC comps, so the transition was really easy, and I knew a lot of the area. So it was smooth sailing.

We have had a lot of success this week, we have a lot of really good investigators here. We have a big area, so it is easy to find new people. The lady that makes us lunch her is a little old lady named Elba. She is 72 years old, but the sweetest old thing you have ever met. And she cooks really good. She has 25 years cooking for missionaries. So she knows what they like and what they don't like.

On Thursday, Elder Sevilla had to do some baptismal interviews for us and some Hermanas. So I went with him to do that.  The Hermanas (Hernandez and Orillana)  area is right by ours, but it is HUGE. We did a few interviews, but we walked a ton. Then we came back to our area and did an interview for our girl who got baptized on Saturday.

On Saturday in the morning cuz we have McDonalds in our area, we went to get breakfast there. It was awesome. Then we went to go get everything ready for the baptisms. We were supposed to have the baptism at 3pm. But our girl took a while to get ready, so we went to the church to wait for her. I also had to baptize 2 people for one pair of Hermanas, and another guy for another pair of Hermanas. So I had to be there a bit earlier. But our girl, whose name is Russell, showed up a bit late, so we couldn't get pics. But all went well.

On Sunday we had 132 people at church! the most I have had ever in NIcaragua. It was cool. And it was the primary program. Here they include 14 year olds. One of the big kids told us that one of the scriptures he read was in the Book of Jesus instead of Jeramias. It was funny. It was good times.

At night we had to go to dinner but the streets were flooded from the rain all day. So we rolled up our pants and put on crocs to go to dinner. We got a few weird looks, but it was fun. (See pic)

Well that's all till next week!
-Elder Taylor

Me and Elder Perry in our Pday attire today
Pday Selfie
Rain Shoes



Monday, November 6, 2017

I got transfered to...

Honestly, this past week was one of the best weeks that I have had in the mission.


On Tuesday morning we went with one of the members of the ward that has a corn field to pick corn. He is 80 years old, and his farm is about 1.5km from his house. He has to take a break every few minutes, but he goes there 3 times a day. ​​ It was really a good time. He is my hero. And on Wednesday he invited us over to his house to have homemade tamales. They are so freakin' tasty.

Thursday was the Celebration of "Dia De los muertos" or Day of the Dead. We went with a member to the cemetery to help decorate the grave of her grandma. It was really kind of weird, cuz people were trying to make money by being clowns and selling food in the middle of the cemetery and listening to rap really loud. But hey, that is pretty much a really good explanation of Nicaragua for y'alls.

On Friday we were tryin' to get permission for a kid that wanted to be baptized that is 14 years old. His parents aren't members but they are cool people. We went to their farm to help spread fertilizer. They don't have anything to spread it, so we put it down by hand, just throwing a bunch of fertilizer by hand on like an acre plot. It was good times. And we got orange Fanta and bread and permission for the baptism as a reward.

That night we had to clean the pool that we baptize in. It was really dirty. We spent like an hour cleaning it in the dark. But we got it done and filled in time for the baptism on Saturday.

We got to Baptize Silvio on Saturday. The baptism was good. It was pretty much just his mom and dad and a few members that came, But it was good. I got to baptize him. It was awesome. He got confirmed in church on Sunday. We had 20 people at church yesterday.

And today I got transferred. I got transferred with in the same zone, But to the middle of the zone. An hour away from Malpaisillo. In Leon. A place called El Coyolar. I am with Elder Perry. My comp from the MTC. He is a good guy. It should be a good transfer. This is my first area that I don't have to take buses every week. And my first area with a chapel. It will be good times!

Till next week,
-Elder Taylor



The baptism​


Visiting the corn field



Me and Elder Perry in the MTC

Monday, October 30, 2017

¡¡¡PIÑATA TIME!!!

This past week was actually really awesome. We could find a lot of new investigators. (48) and have another good week at church.


It rained a lot this past week. Pretty much everyday except Sunday. On Thursday they put the country on red alert for floods and a lot of rain. It rained from 6am on Thursday till Friday morning. It wasn't just a light rain. It was like a downpour all day. My shoes, pants, and shirt, pretty much everything got soaked. I even used an umbrella as well. But the streets got flooded, and it came up to about mid calf or almost knee high at some places. But all is well now. (It is actually raining pretty hard right now)

The highlight of the week was probably the piñata that we had at the church on Saturday. It was to get the kids animated to come to church as well as the piñata. It went really well. We had about 35 kids there. And they all had a great time. We had 2 piñatas full of candy. I'll let the pics and video do the rest of the telling.

On Sunday at church we had 26 people! It was a good week again. Hopefully we can keep up the good work. We have a lot of people that can get baptized these upcoming weeks. I will keep you updated!

Till next time,​
-Elder Taylor


My New Soles

















Monday, October 23, 2017

A Really Tuanis (Awesome) Week

This week was actually really good. Remember my shoes that had giant holes in them? Well, it turns out, right after I finished writing last week, we went to dinner. And the Hermana where we left the shoes, had found someone to change the soles. So my shoes are just like new. It only cost me 150 cordobas. (5 dollars) So I am back up to 2 pairs of shoes.

On Thursday we had a visit from Elder Cordon of the 70. He gave us a really good message about missionary work and how we can get better everyday. I really enjoyed it. In the meeting, I had 7 old companions. Elders Walker, Perry, Sevilla, Alvarez, Ruiz, Asplund, And Ramos. The only ones that weren't there were my 2 comps that have gone home, and 1 who was in a different meeting with other zones. It was cool. sadly I didn't get a pic...

We lost a few days work with the meeting because it was in Managua. But when we were in our area, we worked hard. We had to sleep in La Paz Centro (Peace center) the area of my DL on Wednesday cuz we had to leave at 4am. And on the way back we stayed in Nagarote and ate papusas. 

On Sunday we went with leaders from Leon to get members to go to church. I went with the 1st counselor of the Stake President of Leon to get people to church. We had a lot of success. We ended up getting 34 people to church this week. (A Malpaisillo record) And 8 investigators. It was really awesome. Especially after having only 10 people total for like 2 weeks in a row. If we can keep it like that we will be a branch really soon. Hopefully I can be here another transfer. I really like this area!

-Elder Taylor

(Sorry only a video that I might have sent before, for this week, my pics are kind of hard to get online these days)​





Monday, October 16, 2017

I Got Bit By a Dog

This past week was pretty good! We had a lot of good lessons, and others that didn't really go anywhere. But we have investigators that are progressing towards baptism. And that is always good!

On Thursday we went to Hna. Gloria's house to eat dinner. She is not a member, but is awesome and gives us dinner every Thursday. She makes a really really good gallo pinto. (Rice and beans) You would think that all tastes the same. But no, there is good rice and beans and bad rice and beans. But there is a big difference. Every time that she makes it, It is really tasty. So she taught us how to make it the way that she does. It turned out awesome. So now I can make it in the USA

This week was really hot. It didn't rain all week. So I guess we are going into the hot season now, and out of the rainy season. And I am in the 2nd hottest part of the mission.

Yesterday at church we only had 10 people. We had a lot of people fall through that normally come, and investigators that said they would come that didn't show up. But it was good. I taught gospel principles class. And we are planning the first ever temple trip of Malpaisillo ever! They have to go to the Honduras Tegucigalpa temple which is the closest temple. But the members are excited.

After church, a member invited us to eat lunch at his house. He has a corn field that he owns and watches every day. (He is 80 years old) He was really excited to share some of the baby corn that he has right now. When we got there his daughter's dog, came up and bit my foot. Luckily my shoe protected my foot. So I didn't get any bite marks. But he made us a corn dish that was really tasty. It is called Chilote. And he gave us an ice cold Coca-Cola! It was just awesome!

And later that night, another member invited us to roast marshmallows with them. It was just a little fire in there back yard. No fire pit, no ring of rocks around the fire, just a fire in the middle of the dirt. It was fun. We used cookies to make s'mores!

-- 
-Elder Taylor









Monday, October 9, 2017

Lots and lots of Rain

This week we had A LOT of rain. There was a tropical storm passing through central america. The northern part of Nicaragua (where I am) didn't get too much damage. But the southern part had like 11 deaths from too much water. But here in Leon we just got a week of hard rain. I like rain and all, but a week straight gets old.

On Thursday we went on Divisions with the Zone leaders. That was the day that it rained the longest and hardest. We had district meeting that day in the morning and then I came back to Malpaisillo with Elder Rush. He is from South Jordan. And went to Herriman High School. He came to Nicaragua with me. We did some good work, taught some gay dudes the law of chastity, ate some Gallo Pinto with Cream, got soaked down to our socks cuz we had to walk through flooded streets to get home. My shoes didn't get dry till Sunday morning when the sun came out. All in all it was a good time.

On Sunday we worked really hard to get investigators to church, it was sunny, we didn't go to Leon. It was perfect for an investigator to go to church, but we only got 1 to come of the 10 that we thought for sure would come! But 1 is better than none. We had 14 people at church as well. We are always hoping for more, but we did have a lady that hasn't come for 3 months come to church yesterday. So that was really good.

No pics cuz the computer doesn't want to read my memory card. So till next week then!
--

-Elder Taylor

Monday, October 2, 2017

General Conference 3 of 4

This week was kind of slow for the work. We contacted a lot of people, but it was kind of hard because there were a lot of celebrations for Catholic saints. So a lot of people were involved in that.


But General Conference was good. We had to go to Leon to see it. On Saturday there were still trying to figure out the sound and video, so it was on and off. And the power went out too. But still learned some good things.

On Sunday we went with the Branch Momotombo in a bus to Leon. They picked up our small group of 10 people and we headed off. We stayed there till 4pm. We had gallo pinto for lunch that the Hna. MIlagros brought. It was a good time. It was a good time to just chill and listen to the leaders of the church. And while there, Elder Ramos had some member that were in his last area that went to Honduras where he lives to go to the temple and his family sent him a package. So we got some treats this week.

On Sunday night we ate a dish called nacatamal. (see pic). We have it every Sunday night because a member sells them and she makes them really tasty. Its like soft cord dough (I'm not sure how to explain it) with meat and veggies inside. It is cooked inside of a banana leaf. It is a dish only sold in Nicaragua. Kind of rare to find it in other countries.

A funny story from this week: Elder Ramos and I were trying all week to have a lesson with this family that says that they want to visit with us. But every time we went for the lesson, they were busy or weren't home. On Friday we passed at 7:30pm when they told us to. But again, they weren't home. But we aren't sure because their door was open just a crack. They had asked for a Book Of Mormon, and we had brought it for them. But when nobody came to the door, we just left the book on top of the door for them to find. I am still not sure what happened to the Book of Mormon. But when we find them we will ask what happened to it. (I think it fell on their heads) but who knows?

Till next week,

Elder Taylor

General Conference in Leon

People waiting at for a bus in Leon

Elder Ramos and his package

Nacatamal

Monday, September 25, 2017

6 weeks more in Malpaisillo

Over the weekend we had 3 baptisms. And we had transfers. I will be staying 6 weeks more in Malpaisillo with the same Companion Elder Ramos.
Till Next week

-Elder Taylor



Hours and hours of missionary work!

Bean Soup (sopa de frijoles) it has like eggs, and bell peppers and things like that




Cool Sunglasses courtesy of Pink Eye

Monday, September 18, 2017

A Week Long Nicaraguan Party

This past week was quite interesting.

On Tuesday we has district meeting in Leon. Our phone had been having problems so we got sent a new one by Hna. and Elder Bell the senior missionaries of the mission. And they gave me my first Rice Krispy Treat in over a year, so all was well in the world.
On Wednesday, Nicaragua was celebrating Independence day. And one of the traditions is to have all of the students do a celebration March. All of the schools in Malpaisillo, (and in Nicaragua) had all of their students get dressed up and join the celebration. There were bands and a whole bunch of stuff. I am gonna try to send a video to show how it was.
And later that night the party started. And it didn't end till last night at 4am. It was crazy.
We had planned 3 baptisms for this past week as well. But on Thursday night, one of the girls that was supposed to get baptized with her mom and sister got sick. She has leukemia and when she got sick it got bad really quick, so they went to Managua to get better medical treatment. They still haven't come back from Managua, so we will just have to pray and hope that they come back soon.
At church, we only had 11 people. But this week we are gonna work hard to get a lot of people to church. 
Next week are transfers. I think that I will stay here at least 1 more transfer with Elder Ramos. But we will see how it goes.

Till next week!


-Elder Taylor







Monday, September 11, 2017

How many Nicas does It take to find a fork?

The answer is 3. You need 3 Nicas to find a fork. Just in case you were wondering.

This week as pretty good. We had district meeting in Leon on Wednesday. It was pretty good. After the meeting, Elder Sevilla (who was my 2nd comp, but now is my district leader) came with Elder Herrera and us to Malpaisillo to do baptismal interviews for 3 people that are now ready for baptism. We played a little bit of baseball with a few kids after lunch. And the 3 people passed the interviews and will be getting baptized this week!

On Thursday Malpaisillo was celebrating 81 of years of existence. It was a giant 3 day birthday party! The party actually started on Friday, and lasted till Sunday. Every night there was music blasting in all parts of the city till 4am. It was crazy, and there were so many people out in the streets celebrating. It was a good event and I think that the people here had a good time.

On Friday we the AP Elder Campbell (who was my Zl in Jalapa) work with us all day. In place of the interviews that we usually do each change, we worked with a leader. So we got Elder Campbell with us all day. It went pretty well. Nothing out of the ordinary. He bought us ice cream so all is well.

On Sunday we had 16 people at church. A little less than last week, but still a good turn out for this area. The high dude that usually comes from Leon to lead the meeting came late. So it was back to the Jalapa days and I got to lead the meeting and preside. I also led the hymns again and taught Gospel Principles. It was pretty good.
That is all from this week. We should have another week long party this week cuz Nicaragua is celebrating its birthday this week as well. So I will keep you updated on how it goes

-Elder Taylor

 A breakfast that I had once upon a time. A drink called Cacao that is like chocolate milk. And a food called Sponch

Monday, September 4, 2017

Kittens in Nicaragua

This week was full of kittens. On Wednesday we went to the far away part of our area called San Poncho. It is like 40 minutes walking to get there. We have a family of members there, so we go like once a week. On the way back we were kind of tired of walking, so we took a sit on the side of a bridge. While sitting there, we heard the mewing of tiny cats. We looked down in the dry river bed and there were 3 kittens there just chillin. We took them out of the river bed and we took them to the lady that has a lot of cats. Of the 3 that we saved 1 has been adopted. The other 2 are there to stay it seems like. They are named Maylor and Marge. They are pretty cool.

On Saturday night we were visiting when the same lady that has a lot of cats called us and told her that one of her cats was giving birth. So we headed over to see. the cat has 3 kittens. (she says that she will give them all away) There are 2 black and 1 orange one. 

On Sunday we wanted to have at least 20 people at church. So we left early to get the people ready to go. We walked to church with with a family of a mom and her 3 daughters. They are 11, 9, and 6. While we were waiting outside for them to get ready for church, the 6 year old named Juanita, she was sweeping the leaves from in front of the house. And when she had to go put on a dress she said " sorry I must go and get changed, excuse me" (But in Spanish) It was pretty funny. She speaks like she is way older than 6 years old.

At church the whole stake presidency was there, which never happens. But it was good cuz we met our goal of 20 people at church with 22 people. And we had 8 investigators at church as well. There was also a really old dude that was almost dead like 2 months ago that made it to church for the first time in 3 months now that he is healthy. It was a good week at church. I even led the music.

That is all for this week, peace!

-Elder Taylor


 The kittens and us on the way back from San Poncho