Saturday, November 30, 2013

The Test!!

Each zone conference we give a test on a different part of Preach My Gospel. This is to help the missionaries study the lessons better and become more familiar with the material in this wonderful book so they can teach more effectively. Following the written portion, we have a scripture chase. This time the test was on Lesson 3, Chapter 6 and portions of Chapter 5. The scripture chase was on Lesson 1.

The over-all winner--as in the person with the highest combined total (test and scripture chase) was *Hermana Flores in Ciudad Guzman.  She also was the queen of the scripture chase, getting more points than anyone else in the entire mission!!

The person with the highest test score--for the fourth time in a row--was *Elder Turley, also from the Guzman zone. Congratulations to them both!

The companionship winners from each zone (the companionship with the highest combined scores) are:

Manzanillo--*Elder Snyder and Elder Flores
Colima--*Elder Ramirez and Elder Payne
Guzman--*Elder Turley and Elder Eldredge
Union--Tie--*Elder Casas and Elder Brighton, Elder Acevedo and Elder Araya
Lomas--*Elder Loveland and Elder Juarez
Independencia--Elder Klingler and Elder Solomon
Santiago--Tie--Hermana Najera and Hermana Morales, Elder Krambule and Elder Perez
Tepic--Elder Fortney and Elder Patlán
Vallarta--Elder Buelna and Elder Hernandez

Congratulations to you all!!
*Missionaries going home this change.

Great Job everyone!!


We celebrate birthdays each quarter during zone conference. Here are the people we celebrated this past round. Lucky President Wagner got to celebrate 9 times!

We hope you all had or will have a very happy birthday!

The food

For the first two zone conferences, I did all the food. Feeding around 170 missionaries over the course of nine days, while traveling sometimes three days at a time, proved to be a rather difficult task. Then one of the elders (Thank you so much Elder Tyler Roberts!!) suggested that I have the zone leaders make the food arrangements. This has proved to be such a life saver for me! Not only has my stress level decreased substantially, but we get a much greater variety of food and I get to be in the conference the entire time instead of in the kitchen.

Here is a little sampling of what we ate . . . tacos, chicken mole and chicken cordon bleu with cheesy spaghetti! All of it was delicious!!
Going through the taco bar, making their yummy tacos!

And here another group is going through a line adding toppings to their "carne en su jugo" one of my favorite dishes from Jalisco.

At this meal, no one left hungry!! Each missionary was provided this entire sandwich!
And amazingly, some even finished the whole thing!!
(He did polish off those last few bites)
 Four more champion eaters!
(Their mothers should be so proud.:-)

Thursday, Thanksgiving Day, we had a zone conference in Vallarta. We didn't get turkey for lunch (but we did eat well), and we made sure everyone got pumpkin pie . . ., and pecan . . ., and apple.

Thank you so much to all the zone leaders who made the food arrangements and especially to all the very kind Hermanas who cooked the food for us!

More Zone Pictures

Here are the last three zones. We held their zone conferences this past week and really enjoyed our time with the missionaries.

I am sorry this first one is so bad. I forgot my camera at the hotel and the lighting was really difficult, but hopefully you can at least tell who is who.

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Zone Conferences!

We are in our second week of zone conferences. We always love these! It is so much fun to spend the day with the missionaries. Here are some pictures of six of the zones. I will write about what we did at zone conferences later.

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Change Day !

One very fun part of change day is being able to see so many of the missionaries.
Another fun part is being able to see how excited they all are to see each other!
So here are a few pictures I was able to take in between training the new missionaries. 

And here are the people who make the day all possible! The office secretaries. We cannot say enough about all they do!! We never could pull it all off without their help. Between them and our senior office couple they put together all the bank cards, travel money, visas, insurance cards, training supplies for both the trainers and the trainees, plus they set up all the tables and get the rooms ready for our arrival. We appreciate them so very much!!
Also critical to the process is our assistants. They help get missionaries to and from the airport all morning-those leaving and those arriving. Transport luggage to the church where we do the training, help with training at our house and then the official training at the church building, make arrangements for food after the training and transportation to the bus terminals.
And then there is Hermana Wagner Hija--who doubles as my personal assistant. She helps out with the farewell dinner the night before, the welcome breakfast for missionaries coming from the Mexico MTC and the welcome dinner for those coming from Provo. Meets with all Spanish speaking missionaries at the house to explain the English Language program (while I am meeting with others going over health) and does language training with all the missionaries during orientation. 
So it is quite an effort on the part of many, and we all end the day pretty exhausted. But also with hearts filled with gratitude for all our wonderful missionaries!!

La Bienvenida

One Monday we welcomed 12 new missionaries to our mission. Nine came from Mexico, 2 from Ecuador and one from the U.S. We are so happy to have them here with us and look forward to great things from each of them.

My favorite part of welcoming new missionaries is always when they meet their new companions and find out where they will work. The new missionaries sit on one side of the room . . .

 And the trainers on the other . . .
And when their names are read they meet in the middle. With hugs, of course.

Companionship Pictures