Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Making History!! Changes this time around

In the past couple weeks we have welcomed 8 new elders and 6 new sisters. This is the biggest group of sisters we have received so far. About half of them were 19, although I have told all of our sisters to tell the elders they are 30. :-)

Two elders came a couple weeks ago from Colombia!! We were so happy to finally get them. Both had been waiting a long time for their visas to arrive.

Then yesterday the rest arrived. All six sisters are from Mexico, as well as four of the elders. One elder is from Nicaragua and the other from Peru. We love getting missionaries from all over. It enriches the mission.

They all arrived in the morning so we fed them a typical Mexican breakfast of fried eggs, chilaquiles, yogurt and banana bread. Then, after interviews, we sent them to the office (the elders) and to houses in a nearby ward (the sisters) to take a nap. They have to get up at 4 in the morning to come from the MTC in Mexico City, and the poor elder from Peru had been flying all night. At six (when p-day was over for the rest of the missionaries) we sent them all out to work.

This morning training started bright and early. First the assistants arrived at the church with the luggage, which they had to unload by themselves. (I took the picture as evidence that the job of assistant is not really something to aspire to.:-)
Since it was change day, we had missionaries coming in from all over the mission to pick up their new companions.

 Including these two sisters who are making history in our mission. With the high number of sister missionaries now, the Church has changed "Zone Leader Council" (which meets monthly) to "Mission Council" which will continue to meet monthly but include "Sister Leader Trainers" who will be responsible for training the sisters in the mission. These two are our first sister trainers!! Both are super missionaries, we are just sad that one of them will be returning to her home in Honduras in six weeks.
Meanwhile, the new elders were being introduced to hair with a part on the side. This was a rule instituted by the previous mission president which we decided to not enforce since it wasn't in the missionary handbook. However, after this past round of interviews we noticed many of the missionaries were wearing their hair in ways that detracted from the work, so we decided there was wisdom in the rule and are once again enforcing it.

Here the assistants are teaching the new elders the mission ways. (Sorry I am in the mirror!)

After being introduced to hair with a part on the side, one elder (not in this group but another one) wrote and told President Wagner that he knew why we were asking them to wear their hair that way. It was so no girls would ever have an interest in them. We laughed at that. I think they all look pretty handsome!!

After the preliminary training by myself and the assistants, we went into the chapel for the really fun part. This is where all the new missionaries . . . (in picture below)

 get to meet their trainers and find out where they will be serving. Everyone is always nervous and excited. Four of our six elders training have trained before. Most of our sisters have not trained because we have received so few sisters, so this was a really fun day for them. One sister barely finished her own training and now is training someone else.
Once their new companions were announced they met in the middle for a few minutes to get to know each other.

 And then some additional training by the President.
Training ended with pizza and then we sent them all on their way.

We are so excited to have them all here and look forward to great things from all of them!!

Editors Note: We were supposed to receive 17 more, (9 from the US and the rest from several Latin American countries) but they are waiting for visas. Please pray they will come soon!!


  1. I think my son, Elder Hermansen, was one of the missionaries who was supposed to come but didn't get his visa! We will pray that they will get them soon!! I love reading about the mission even though my son isn't there yet, even!! Thank you, Sister Wagner!!

  2. Es una gran bendición para las hermanas recibir la oportunidad de liderazgo en la misión, eso las prepara para cuando ellas regresen a casa, esten mas firmes en su testimonio y animadas a seguir con la obra en la Iglesia en sus propias unidades.
    La hna Flores (no es porque sea mi hija) pero está muy preparada para toda labor de liderazgo y eso la ayudará a superar sus propias limitaciones personales (es algo timida) la ayudará a sacar a flote todas las cualidades que tiene.
    Gracias hna Wagner por su blog