Monday, January 26, 2015

Weddings in Honduras!

This week was super great. The whole week we were frantically planning and preparing for... 

A WEDDING!!!!!! 

The parents of a family we have been teaching for a while got married this week, making it my first wedding here in Honduras that I have been able to experience. Two other families that I have taught have gotten married but both after I have left the area, because it is very difficult to get the money and the papers and organize the whole process in the short time that we find, teach, and they decide to take to repent and be baptized. It was an awesome experience. As often happens with me I feel, for lack of other volunteers, I ended up directing the wedding, even though I barely even know what goes on in American weddings, let alone Honduran wedding culture. But, I did my best, even though I forgot the names of our investigators that we were getting married in front of everyone for a split second. Awkward. We invited the district president to come and give a talk and he did and it was really good about the importance of marriage in a world that teaches that it is unnecesary. Honestly, looking back, the fact that everything went so well and it was such a legit wedding in the middle of impoverished Honduras is a big miracle! It was a tender mercy for me to finally get to see a wedding after 19 months of teaching the importance of the marriage covenant. This family was totally prepared. They killed one of their lambs for food for the wedding. Awesome. Also, the district president liked the wedding so much and the family that he told us he would pay the expensive 8 hour trip each way to Tegucigalpa so that they can got to the temple at the end of this month! I WANT TO GO TO THE TEMPLE!!!!

Baptism of Ernesto y Marta. Their daughters were baptized two weeks ago. Despite the happy day, it is the tradition here in Honduras to take pictures like a serious mug shot. Not sure why no one smiles in photos, even when we tell them, come on and smile!  

Wedding of Ernesto y Maria!

Now we got them to smile!

I also gave a talk this week on the concept of Grace. I love the idea of grace. Are we saved by grace? Yes. Everyone? Yes. 

Everyone will overcome death and be resurrected thanks to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ. In that aspect, we are all saved by grace. But grace is more than that. Grace is the ennobling and divine power that lets us to only be saved, but changed. It helps us to become more than we can alone, and to overcome weaknesses and temptations that otherwise would be unovercomable. It saves us after all we can do. It is not that we have to earn our way to heaven, but we do have to learn our way to heaven. We need to be different, better, even one day perfect (matt 5:48) to enjoy an eternal existence with God. Grace is not the back up generator that turns on after the primary fails, but is the constant source of energy that lets us overcome sin and come unto Christ. I spoke in my talk about my caving trip with Chris and the darkness that we felt turning off the lights in the cave and that the grace of God and the atonement of Jesus Christ give us the light to find our way out of the cave of spiritual darkness. It was cool. 

Love you all! 

Much to say but little time. 

Elder Moffitt

This picture is not for the faint in heart. What is it? Glad that you asked. It is Mondongo. It is, frankly, cow stomach. Well, this is actually lamb stomach but normal mondongo is cow stomach. You clean it, then make soup out of it. Not going to lie, it is disgusting. Yes, I have had to eat it several times here.
Pray for the missionaries here in Honduras. It isn't just bullets that can kill people. :)
Accosted this kinda oblivious guy with his USC shirt and explained to him why he was wearing the best shirt ever and then taught him the Fight On fingers. V for Victory all day every day!

Monday, January 12, 2015

Happy New Year from Honduras!

Happy New Year Everyone!

So much to write. To make up for the lost work time in Christmas week, we taught a grand total of 64 lessons this week! We were so blessed this week in so many forms. We pretty much contacted for this whole week. Contacting is fun but you run into a loooooot of apostasy.

Welcome 2-0-1-5!
To celebrate New Years Day, after a hard day's work and teaching 10 (!) lessons, we pulled a grill in front of our apartment and cooked Honduran steak and some sausages and made hot Mexican salsa, kettle corn, and cooked s'mores. It was a bittersweet moment, as I said goodbye to my only full year of 100% dedicated service as a full time single missionary in my life. 

Some great blessings of this week were that we gave the priesthood to 2 recent converts, and went to visit on divisions with 3 of our recent converts. It is so cool to watch someone who weeks and months ago didn't feel comfortable offering a public prayer to then testify that our message is true, and testify of the power of the gospel in their lives to others. 

On Sunday, we had such a powerful sacrament meeting! So many people attended, we had over 15 investigators at church, and the spirit was so strong. The thing I love so much about Honduras is that there is NEVER one minute of silence in testimony meetings. From the second the bishop turns the time over for testimony meeting, a line of 5 people forms, and from then on there is always 2 or 3 or 8 people waiting to share their testimonies. Wow. I am always blown away by that desire that they have here to share their testimonies. Of course, it is a challenge getting people to share that powerful testimony outside of the church. If you have a testimony, share it!

One day we were walking and we passed by these super sketchy guys and one of them shouted at me in English, like all the people here that are deported from the U.S. always do. They are always so proud that they know how to say "hey how ya doing bro? I live in the States five year!!" that they lose no opportunity to accost every Elder Moffitt they can find to tell him. Anyways, this guy comes up and he is covered, like covered, in tatoos. There was no unmarked part of his body. And he starts to tell us that he loves Jesus and shows us this big tatoo of Jesus on his left arm on the cross, and some angels, and other bible stuff, and we are like wow man that is so great! And what is this on your right arm, ohhhhh wow that is a big satan face! hahaha his whole right arm is just covered in pure death satan stuff. And he tells us proudly that he is a local leader of the Mara Salvatrucha, one of the 2 biggest Central American gangs, and lifts up his shirt and he has MARA SALVATRUCHA tatooed all over his chest. So we are like well, that's really great! But not so much. Have you ever killed anyone? Oh no, I don't kill people; I just smoke and drink and stuff. And tatoo myself. Well, that's good. But it was a really clear Matthew 6:24 moment, like we can't just say we love Jesus and then have Satan tatooed all over our right arm. We have to have Christ more than marked on our arm, he must be marked on our heart and his image must reflect on our very counterance. Our actions will convey that we are Christians far more than the darkest ink. We talked to him of the gospel and gave him a pamphlet. We are going to get him to gather all his phonies and preach them the gospel some day.

I just love finding the chosen people of the Lord, those that the Lord has really prepared to recieve the restored gospel and who long to make those changes in their lives. If someone is so deep in  the apostasy and they don't want anything, well let them stay there. The field is white and ready to harvest. 

Wierd thing about Honduras: they eat cough drops for candy.

I think that the greatest thing that I have learned in the mission is to love. I feel such love for my family and my friends and the people here in Honduras it is wierd. I have never been really good in communicating that I love people so that will be my next step. 

Love you all! 

Hurrah for Israel!
Elder Moffitt

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Baptism of Leonardo, a really bright young man that is one of the most intelligent and quick thinking 15 yr olds that I know. He really wanted to get baptized since we started teaching him. He will be a great future misionary.