Tuesday, August 26, 2014

6.0 EARTHQUAKE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mora Family,

So to start off, I have some bad news. As most of you know this past Sunday the 25 August, there was a 6.0 magnitude earthquake from the epicenter in Napa Valley, CA. It received some significant damage and several people were injured. We are located about 2 hours or so from the epicenter and received some significant aftershocks at approximately 3:20am. This was the strongest earthquake the Bay Area has experienced in the past 25 years. The tremors lasted anywhere from 30-40 seconds. The worst part of this whole experience is that my companion and I SLEPT THROUGH THE WHOLE THING!!! I was so bummed that I didn't wake up or even notice an earthquake happening! I've been wanting to feel an earthquake for so long, like since I was in Mexico City!haha We are not injured or hurt or mangled or burned or anything bad.ha I mean we didn't even wake up. We arrived at church that morning at 7am waiting for some meeting to start and the branch president and his counselors asked us if we felt the earthquake that morning. We were like," There was an earthquake??" I guess most the branch (mostly the sisters) were woken up in the middle of the night and couldn't go back to sleep. All the hermanos in the ward had to get woken up by their wives to even notice anything was happening.haha That was funny to hear. I can see dad sleeping through an earthquake too.ha
Elder Lotulelei and I have been working hard these past couple weeks. We are in a little bit of a dry spell with investigators, but we are still working with a few people. Recently we started teaching a young woman named Eli. She is the girlfriend of a less active brother in the branch. She has been reading tons from the Book of Mormon and we have been teaching her the importance of praying to receive and answer. We can tell that she genuinely wants to find out if this the true Church, and we are helping her to do those things that will help her to receive her answer. Besides her, we are working with a lot of less actives and one other family that is investigating the Church. We have lots to do, and lots of road to bike everyday. I had my first real bike crash two weeks ago.ha I was riding a little too close to some hedges and my left handlebar got yanked as I went by, and I  went right over my handlebars and flat on the sidewalk. I didn't get any scratches or anything so it was a graceful crash.haha Elder Lotulelei is an awesome companion and barely laughed at me. He is doing a great job so far in the mission, and he is one of three polynesians in the Spanish program, so its good to have him. We have been receiving blessings everyday from all the prayers back home and the love you all send to us. We are safe and thank you for your concern about us. This morning in our studies we read a scripture in 1 Nephi 17:3. I know the Lord will guide us and protect us as long as we keep his commandments. I will strive everyday to live up to his blessings. Last week we got the opportunity to go through the temple, and I am so grateful for the time we had to be reminded of the sacred promises we have made with the Lord. If anything I have learned on my mission, it has been the importance and magnitude of obedience. And we should be obedient because we love Him. I love the Lord and this gospel. I encourage the family to make more time to visit the temple and receive the blessings of temple work. I love the whole family sooooo much! Thanks to everyone for your love and support. Abuela, muchísimas gracias por su carta, voy a intentar de escribir una por usted hoy día. La colgué sobre mi espejo en nuestra habitación para verla cada mañana. Gracias de verdad:) Lo quiero mucho! That's all I got. Hope everyone is enjoying the rain! Say hi to Chico for me:)

Elder Mora

AUGUST UPDATE ......

8/11/14
Mom, 

Hello everyone, there have been tons of changes in the mission this transfer. We just received calls this past weekend, and I'm so excited for what the Lord has revealed to us through our mission president. I will be staying in my area as the senior companion/district leader, and I will be training a new missionary. My compie, Elder Curay, will be going to my last area in San Francisco! The sisters in my district, including Hermana De Aquino, will be staying. She finishes her mission this coming November. Our Zone Leaders are also in our district, and one of them was chosen to be the new assistant to the President. He was actually my "grandpa" in the mission, so I was so excited for him. We will be receiving a newly called zone leader to replace him this transfer. And guess who it is?! Its going to be Elder Yellowhorse! He trained me while I was in San Francisco. Crazy right?! Well I'm super excited for this transfer and all the added responsibilities I will receive from training. Just want to share one quick experience from this week. I love, mom, how you shared how well your simple lessons are going at church. I was in a trio this week with all the changes in our district, and we had to coordinate working between two areas. So because of this we had to also teach very simply and powerfully. I learned that the Spirit doesn't need fancy words or even long sentences to be able to touch the hearts of others. We had one lesson in which we shared a scripture and we each took turns testifying of what we knew was true. We felt the Spirit and so did the Hermano we were visiting. I love how simple the Gospel can be. I hope we can all come to understand this more fully. I am so sad that in two more transfers, I will hit my year mark. I can't believe how fast it is going. That's the update this week. Everyone stay safe! Love you!

Elder Mora

JULY NEWS...new tranfer

7/14/14
Hola,



Things are going swell here in San Leandro. It is so nice here. The people are nice, the weather is nice, the food is nice, everything is nice.ha I can't stop thinking of how similar it is to home. I'm not home sick, but its just nice to be in a place with good things. I'm also not saying that San Francisco wasn't nice, it's just different.ha I have been warmly welcomed into the branch, and the work here is going along fine. This last week we took a new family we are teaching to the Visitor's Center at the Oakland temple and I think they really enjoyed their time there. I have been on bike the past two or so weeks, and my little legs are hurting. I'm just glad this area is relatively flat and not super hilly like San Fran. There is also a Ghirardelli Factory a mile from where we live, so every morning it smells like freshly made chocolate. It's awesome!! Everyone stay safe! I love you all and have a fantastic week!
Elder Mora

Monday, July 7, 2014

TRANSFERED TO SAN LEANDRO!!

Transfer News, 
I received a call from President Meredith of our mission, and I will be getting transferred to San Leandro in the Spanish Branch to be the new district leader. I will be with a new companion se llama Elder Curay de Peru, pero vive en Phoenix! I am sad to be leaving San Francisco and my district, but I am excited with the new area and assignment. I don't have much time to write, but thanks for all your prayers and love. Love you all! 

Elder Mora
p.s. congrats familia McClellan! Jared congratulations on your call!





JUNE NEWS

Mom,
Yes you all would be jealous of the weather over here. It's perfect.haha Is dad still going to measure a job out here? Everyday I still feel cold because the wind never stops! Its super nice though because other parts of the mission are pretty hot. I'm lucky to still be in San Fran.

Ayy Sebastian! That is funny he is getting so much work done on his teeth and that he keeps hurting himself.haha I hope you took a video of him after the surgery. And I guess I hope he feels better too. I also got your package this week. I think it is my favorite one yet. I loved all the pictures of the house, my flowers, la casita, the mining camp, and the family. Already some of the cousins look so different. Jysele looks way different and Ammon too. I think my favorite pictures were of Chico. I miss him a lot.haha I was really excited to use those popper things, but it turns out they are registered fireworks so I can't use them:( I will give them to one of the little kids in the ward I think. 

Well this is the last week and a half of the transfer! I have been having a great time with Elder Rodriguez. He has been a huge example and help to me these past few weeks. He has been teaching me tons of Spanish, and how to talk Argentino (castillano).ha I have developed a taste for "mate" also. I don't know if any of you have heard of it, but I guess everyone in Argentina drinks it and in Chile also. Its pretty bitter at first, but now I like it.ha I'll send some pictures of us drinking some mate. Hopefully they leave us together here in San Francisco the next transfer!

The World Cup has been a huge annoyance here for us.ha It is crazy how many latinos there are here from all over central and south america. Our lessons have been taking a hit because people are too busy watching los partidos instead of meeting with us.ha But things are still good. WOoooo! Viva Mexico! I heard they won today.ha We have an Elder in my district from El Distrito Federal and he was screaming when he heard they won.haha I'll send some pictures of my comp next week.

Gracias todos y que tengan una buena semana!

Elder Mora, 
p.s those cds saved my life...thank you

Monday, June 16, 2014

MAKING & KEEPING PLANS...

6/16/14

Mom,

     Ok so this is the experience from this past week that I want to share: This past Tuesday we had a very cool experience with making and keeping plans. In the morning after our usual studies I make the comment to Elder Rodriquez," We aren't going to use the buses today. We're going to walk all day!" He agreed and thought it would be a good idea. The past few weeks the muni bus drivers have been on strike, so it has been really effecting our proselyting. So we made some plans to visit some less active members and some former investigators. So we started off visiting houses and walking "with purpose" and only had one person answer the door (and it was the wrong person). It was after walking up and down a couple hills, and I said to Elder Rodriguez, " Maybe we can take the bus to the next house." I was already tired, but he told me, " No Elder Mora, you said we were going to walk all day." I reluctantly agreed with him and we walked the 6 blocks to the next house. After about another hour of contacting, we were walking back towards our house, when a woman walking towards us stopped and asked us where our church was located. She was super happy that she finally found us on her way to going to the store. She is from Ecuador and has a brother who is a member in Ecuador. He has been telling her that she needs to take her son and go to a LDS church in San Francisco. She told him that she has never seen "aquellos jovenes con camisas blancas y corbatas". She told us that she had a feeling to walk that way to buy some fish, and she said that it meant a lot to her to find us that day. She told us she would go to church this Sunday and then start bringing her son. After talking to her for several minutes, Elder Rodriquez and I talked about the blessing it was to decide to not take the bus, and now we will have this awesome lady at church with us this Sunday. I know that when we make plans and present them to the Lord in prayer and follow them, He will put people in our path to share the gospel with. I love being a missionary! Love you all!

Elder Mora



Tuesday, May 20, 2014

MAY NEWS.... TRANSFER/NEW COMPANION

Dear Mom, 
It was really nice to see you too! All of the sister missionaries that see pictures of you ask, " Is that your mom?! She's so young and beautiful!" I tell them yes she is my mom.haha It is good to hear how Dallin is doing. I'm definitely sure that his mission is continuing to bless him. Send me pictures of the wedding! 

Gaby! Congratulations on your graduation! It is a pretty big step in life and for me it was a really good experience. Take lots of pictures, and keep in touch with your friends. Have a great graduation party! I don't even think I had one.ha 

Sebas be careful on your scuba trip to the lake. I hear there are giant catfish that like dragging people down to the bottom of the lake....send me a picture of you in your scuba gear!! When I get back I'm going to get scuba certified too!

I love writing you guys, and I'll give you an update on transfer calls. I will be staying in San Francisco 6 Area. I will be in the same district but in a different area. I will be in SF6C with Elder Rodriguez and he is from Argentina and has been in my district for 3 months already. So I already know him pretty well. ha He just finished training as well, and I'm really excited. 

Its cool to hear that work is going great! That is so cool that you got that job with the head coach of ASU track. What did dad say to him about me?ha That's awesome he thought I did well considering my leg. 
Keep working hard! Who is doing my job now? Chacha? haha 

mom estoy guapo porque usted es mi mama!

Con Amor, 
Elder Mora



MAY NEWS...

MAY 15TH

Familia,
Hello everyone, this week was very...I can't describe it. I don't want to write very much, but I do want to share a few small experiences from this week. Of course we had Mother's Day last Sunday and it was kind of weird to see everyone after 5 months.haha I really enjoyed the Skype call and getting to talk with mom. I loved the testimonies that were shared to me from both mom and dad. I should have shared mine in Spanish to you, and I'm sorry I did't. You both looked pretty busy and there was a bad connection. It was super weird being able to understand you two in Spanish.haha I liked talking to abuela also, and I promise by Christmas my Spanish will be awesome. Ok so about this week. I had a very sweet experience with a black lady last Sunday morning. Elder Yellowhorse and I were waiting at a bus stop on the way to church when this sweet little black lady walked up to me. She asked me if I could say a prayer for her. I said of course I can, and I asked her her name and a little bit about herself. She shared with us that she felt like it was to hard to live in this world without God in our lives. She told me how she felt like she was burdened down by her work, and other responsibilities. I offered a humble prayer asking Heavenly Father to help her through this point in her life and to bless her with strength through her trials. She was so happy that we were able to pray with her, and she started crying.ha It was a very strong spiritual moment and I am thankful she had the courage to ask us to share that prayer with her. I also had a similar experience this last Monday. We had gone to our local library to email some information to the mission. I was seated at a computer next to a couple other patrons, when the man siting to the left of me asked me to help him translate a paragraph of a book he was reading. I guess from my name tag he knew I was a Spanish elder. The book he was reading was about the gospels in the new testament ( big surprise), and we first was asking me some weird doctrinal questions that I didn't know how to answer. I told him what I believed was a good answer and we somehow got to the topic of Christ's atonement and how the man felt about God. He started sharing with me his deep shame he had about a drinking problem he had and how he never wanted me to feel the pain he had in his soul. He told me he had been searching through religious book trying to find one that would help him to feel closer to God. He had read the Book of Mormon and believed it to be true. I sat quietly as he continued to pour out his feelings and share with me what I think he had been wanting to tell someone for a long time. He cried as he told me the pain and anger he had towards his mistakes, but that he knew that only Christ was his Savior. He told me to forgive him for his sudden testimony and that he was grateful that I was there to listen. It was a powerful experience I won't soon forget. I learned this week that as missionaries we have been set apart with power and authority. People can see and feel that. I know that these people were comfortable to share the feelings of their hearts with me because of the sacred nature of my calling. I know that if I live worthily to my calling, them I will be able to continue to be a "light" to other people around me. Very humbling week! Well that's it!! Have a great week everyone, love you tons.

Elder Mora

APRIL NEWS...

APRIL 28TH

Familia,
  Wow I can't believe everything that is happening since I have been out barely 4 months! Its really good to hear all that is going good with the family.
 
Mom I know you know this, but I really am agrateful to have you as my mom. I know things have been tough with nana's passing, but always remember that I love you and I love nana too. I think that you talking with Tia Blanca and Tia Elsa is really good. Just keep smiling too! You know that you will see her again, so don't get down. I recently read a talk that I think would really help you out. It was in the Jan. 14 Ensigh titled "The Healing Power of Grief" by Steven Eastmond. I know you are a strong person.
 
Dad!! I want another letter from you! How is work going and how is the house? I know you are probably super busy, but I would be nice to hear from you. Thank you for your continual example you have given me. Sometimes when I am giving service or stuff like that I find myself working harder than other elders.haha I know you helped me to become a thoughtful and hard working man. I love you and know you are a great father.
 
The Farrs!! So how is it finally being adults and having to work alot?ha I know you two will grow together as you work through trials and have fun together. I love you two! Sorry Olivia I will write as soon as I can!
 
Gaby!! You went to a Grouplove concert! SO Jealous but not really;) Keep up the good work in school and have fun at Prom! Congrates on everything and your desire to serve a mission. It is literally the best thing I've ever done. Love you Gobby!
 
Sebastian how is school? Is our room still clean?haha jk I know its probably messy. I do miss you and chico as being my roommates. Thanks for helping me to realize that the little things that my companion does to bug me don't really matter.haha Keep your head up with wrestling! I know you are ten times better than I was so you better keep practicing or I'll pin you when I get back:)
 
Tell Nellie and Justin Congratulations!!
Tell Kenyon he's the man for deciding to return to the field.
Tell all the other people you mentioned that I say hello and congrats as well.
 
LOVE You all and I'm sorry but I dont have much more time to write about my investigators. We recently committed one of our others to be baptised and he said yes and looks really solid. His name is Carlos Diaz and he is from peru. THanks familia!!
 
Elder Mora

Monday, May 19, 2014

APRIL NEWS...

APR 21ST:
Mom,
Feliz Pascua! I wish I was there to play ollitos! Now I know what that means!haha And yes if there is any pictures I would love to see everyone.ha I am so surprised you used my email about the Sister that I met in the city. I don't think I even said anything worth repeating, especially in a sacrament meeting!! Tell Gaby I said thank you for quoting me, and hopefully it sounded alright.ha I am so humbled to hear that the other brothers in the ward want to use it too. 

My transfer was super uneventful! I am still in the same area, with the same companion, but I am so glad we got to stay here this transfer. Not very many elders or sisters were moved in the zone I am in. The baptism of our investigator went really well, and it was so humbling to be able to be one of the elders to teach him. I think he will be a faithful member of the San Francisco 6th Ward and the members are really supportive. 

Thanks for the package and I'll be sure to give some shirts to the other missionaries in my district! There's only four elders and two sisters and we all cover the same ward.ha Gracias por todo que usted ha hecho! 

Love you all! Tell Olivia I will write her back soon! Sorry also I haven't sent a package yet, but it will come eventually!! Its really busy on P-days so sorry. 

Con muchas ganas, 
Elder Mora









APRIL

Monday, April 14, 2014

POTENTIAL BAPTISM....

march 24th:
We have two new investigators and they are awesome people. The first is named Henry and he is the friend of a member that we found while street contacting. This member had been looking for the church building for months and he was so happy to find us on the street that night, and now we are teaching his friend Henry. The second man is just as awesome. We were walking to an appointment and he stopped and asked us if we spoke spanish. I feel so good saying that I can now, even though its still a little shaky.ja But he just told us that one day he realized that he needed God in his life, and he came to church this last Sunday and I know he had a great experience and felt the Spirit. Nos dijo que el es va a venir el proximo domingo tambien.Yo siento tan agradecido por las bendiciones que yo he visto en nuestro alrededor ahora. I know that the Lord is blessing us for our diligence. Thank you Mom and family for everything you are doing for me! Love you muchisimo!
Elder Mora

march 31st:
Mom, 
I got the last package this week with your shirts and the photos in it. I really appreciate all that you guys are doing for me. I can't explain how many blessings we have been seeing these past few weeks. The investigator I told you about last week ,Henry, has a baptismal date! He is progressing so well and I really can see how the gospel is going to bless his life. We just recently taught him the word of wisdom and he had been drinking coffee his whole life. After the lesson he said," well I guess no more coffee", and he hasn't drank any since. He is a awesome guys and I feel so lucky to be teaching him. Elder Yellowhorse and I are winding down towards the end of our second transfer, and we don't know what's going to happen. He could stay, I could stay, we could both stay or leave, I could train another Spanish Elder, or we could both train in different areas.haha Its exciting yet sad, because I really want to stay in this area. I've really come to like it and I know that we have the best Spanish ward in the mission.ha I might be training because we have a shortage of Spanish-speaking missionaries in the mission right now, and President Meredith said I would be some months until we receive more. I don't feel like I could train another missionary yet, but if it happens, it happens!ha I also wanted to share a small miracle that we saw this Sunday with a man that recently started attending church with us. He was the other man I talked about last week that we found on the street and said that he wanted to come closer to God. Well after that Sunday, we asked him if we wanted to take the missionary lessons, but he said that he was just interested in a place to go to church and that he didn't have any time to see us. Well this past Sunday we had fast and testimony meeting, and there was such a strong spirit in the chapel. We left right after church to take Henry to a baptismal service to see how they are done, and we totally forgot to talk to the other man, Carlos. Well on the way to the baptism, we got a call from our bishop and he explained to us that Carlos went up to him after sacrament and said that he wanted to start taking the missionary lessons!! It was such a testimony to me of how the Spirit softens hearts. I want you all to know that your prayers are being answered and thank you all so much! Gracias y les quiero mucho!
Elder Mora
p.s. can I have the davis's address? tell them sorry i havent written them! thanks for the new shoes! all the other missionaries are jealous of the shirt also!haha love you mom!

Golden Gate Bridge Trip Pics







Monday, March 17, 2014

Lovin' the Bay Life



Great "small" Experience

My Family,

     So this week I just want to share a small experience that I had this week while street contacting. Elder Yellowhorse and I were in downtown San Francisco at one of the BART stations in our area. We like to do street contacting at Powell Station because it is always full of people walking to work, shopping, or waiting to get on the famous San Francisco Rail Cars. We are just across the street from the station, and we posted ourselves on either side of the side walk and started to contact people. Usually with how busy people are in the city, we just try to invite them to visit mormon.org and offer them a pass-a-long card. Sometimes longer conversations develop and we have the opportunity to share more about the Restoration and ask them for their personal information and if they would like to receive visits from the missionaries. Usually we get the cold shoulder, or the "sorry no thank you", or just a straight "no". But this last Wednesday afternoon things were going well. We had passed out a few cards and had been talked too by some members visiting San Francisco. Its always great to talk to members and tell them where we're from and how the work is going in San Francisco. One sister that we saw that morning said, " Oh! I'm so happy to see missionaries in San Francisco! I thought they didn't let you guys in this area?!" haha I let her know that yes a few years ago they used to not let us proselyte in certain parts of downtown, but now all of the city is open to us. She was happy to see us in the city talking to people and it really uplifts us to see members in San Francisco. A lot of people ask us why we get sent to San Francisco and we say, "Because we're needed here, and this is were the Lord wants us." After a few more minutes on the sidewalk, I continued to watch people walk by and looked for those that I could offer a card to or start a conversation with. I noticed a woman walking my way and she glanced at me for a moment. Usually people just stare at our name tags or at what we are wearing, but this woman looked me in the eyes for a few seconds. I knew and felt that I needed to try to talk to her. As she started to walk by me, I said, "Excuse me miss, could I give you a card about Jesus Christ?" She stopped walking and told me that she was actually a member. She asked me where I was from and we talked a little bit about ourselves and the usual greeting with members. As the conversation started to end I assumed that she would just tell me "Good luck and keep up the good work!", but she paused and asked me a very sincere question. "Elder Mora, what to you think about the Atonement?" I was surprised at her question, and wondered why she would ask me about the Atonement on the street in front of a huge shopping center with thousands of people going from one place to another. But I could tell from the sound of her voice and the look in her eyes, that she really needed someone to share what they thought about the Atonement. And this is roughly what I said, "Well that's a very good question. I don't get the opportunity to teach in English very often, so thank you for asking me this question. For me personally the Atonement is what allows me to not only receive forgiveness for my sins, but gives me the capacity to be better than I was before. It strengthens us and helps us to be the kind of person that we are continually striving to become. I know that without the Atonement, Heavenly Father's plan for us would not work, we would not be able to change and become better than we are now." As I was bearing my testimony to her, this sweet sister, with whatever struggles and trials going on in her life, started to cry. I could feel the Spirit testifying to her through my words that we can always rely on the Atonement in our lives no matter what. I was so grateful and humble to be able to help her in whatever way that I did, either with helping her to know that God loves her or that we shouldn't be afraid to turn to the Atonement for comfort. I asked her if there was anything else that I could do for her, and she quietly replied, "No, thank you. You've done enough with what you've said." I told her what a pleasure it was to meet her and how much joy it gives missionaries to see members, and the support and encouragement that they give us. The sad thing is that I can't even remember her name, but I know that I was able to help her feel the Spirit. I am so grateful for this opportunity that the Lord gave to me to help one of his daughters. I can't explain exactly how I know it, but I know that the Lord is conscience of me and loves me, and that he allowed me to have that special experience. 
   I just want everyone back home to know that I am doing great. I haven't been having what most people think is success on the mission, like baptisms or tons of investigators, but I've come to learn that a successful missionary is one who is committed to his or her purpose. And our purpose is to invite people to Christ. I have been doing my best and I still feel like I'm being as successful as I can be right now. Thank you for all of your prayers. I pray for you all daily as well. Les amo muchisimo. 

Elder Mora
3/17/14

Early morning run

LJ writes:
3/17/14
I Took this picture on top of this cool mountain trail on my run this morning at 6am! Downtown San Francisco and the Bay Bridge way off in the back.


Monday, March 10, 2014

Living the Missionary life .... pics









NEXT TRANSFER ... SAME PLACE, SAME COMPANION :)

On Mar 3, 2014
Mom,
How are things back home? I hope Tata is doing better. I don't know is you are busy this week but just want to say a quick hello. I also got two new investigators this week and they are both really nice men, One already has been reading the Book of Mormon, he is so prepared! Well gracias mom for your love and prayers! I'll send some pictures today.
Elder Mora


On Mon, Feb 24, 2014
Los Moras & Tata,
     Hey glad to hear that Tata is doing alright. I'll continue to pray for him. I don't know if Tata will be comfortable with it, but please ask him if we would like to receive a priesthood blessing. I know that if he needs comfort and health and has the faith in our Heavenly Father, he will feel better. I have given several blessings now on my mission, and I know the strengh and comfort that come from these blessings. Tata I love you and I know a blessing would help you feel better.
     Its really cool to hear all the things going on back home with the Gilbert Temple Dedication and a new Stake Presidency for our stake. I've only been out a few months and all this cool stuff is happening! Thank you also family for your fasting for my companion and I. We have actually been receiving more referals this week and I think a few of them are going to be really golden investigators. We'll see! I definitely know the power of fasting. Over here in California there has been a very bad drought, and the first fast sunday I was here the whole stake and most of the other stakes in California fasted for rain. I heard that even members outside of California were fasting for rain. And guess what happened? I rained all day Sunday, and the next day, and the next day! I rained for a week straight, and I know that was Heavenly Father answering prayers. So thank you for your fast.
     I am so glad that my letters reached you guys! Tell the rest of the family that they will be getting theirs soon. I'm glad Abuela liked my letter and that Chacha and Amy liked theirs too.
    We haven't been having much success with new investigators, but we starting teaching a boy in our ward named Jefferey. He's ten years old and we are teaching him and his little sister Emily the lessons to prepare them to be baptized. It has been so good to have these lessons with them, because even children this young can feel the truth of the gospel. It just inspires me when I hear him answer questions and share his testimony with us. I'm so blessed to be able to teach him and his sister.
     My next transfer starts today actually, and I am staying in the same area with the Elder Yellowhorse for another transfer. I am glad I get to stay because we finally know the area well enough to start having more progress.
     The Bonillas are doing very well. They have been coming to church a lot more and I always enjoy seeing them. They actually aren't in my area so I don't teach them, but I have had some meals with them and I shared a spiritual thought once. They are a very sweet couple and they love talking about their daughter with me. I told them she might have been my Primary teacher and that made them really happy. They also told me that she would be visiting them this week, so maybe I can see her and say hello.haha
     So about my Spanish...I keep getting members in my ward that tell me that I should know Spanish already and that my parents should have taught me. But I'm glad that I have this opportunity to learn Spanish because I know I will appreciate it so much more when I am able to speak it with the family when I get back. Its kind of discouraging when they tell me these things, but I know they don't mean any offense. I know that the Lord gave me this opportunity and invested time in me to learn Spanish for a reason. I am still struggling with being to hard on myself with my Spanish, but I can see myself slowly improving.
     I have been having some different kinds of food, but nothing super different or weird. I tried these things called pupusas and they are really good. They are an El Salvadorian food and they are muy sabroso! Other than that, I've been eating lots of chicken with rice, and not very much salsa. I guess that's a Mexican thing.ha I miss burritos and tacos and tortas and other stuff that me and dad would go eat, but this food has been amazing.
     I can't believe that the casita is almost done (finally) and the house is getting worked on. How is work going? Is Woody still doing my job?ha I still want pictures of the casita! Tell the Farrs to start having kids already. I read a really good talk about from one of the apostles about this. Just start your family and the Lord will bless you. (and I want to be an uncle):)
 
Love,
Elder Mora

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Crazy Busy Past 2 weeks

Famly,
This has been a crazy week for me as well. I so much going on that I couldn't even email until today! Well let me think about this past week. On Monday, we had Zone Training which was so good and uplifting. We talked about as members how we turn to scriptures, conference talks, church magazines, and our patriarchal blessings during hard or trying times. Well our zone leaders helped us to realize that we need to be teaching our investigators the same thing. Usually when our investigators have a question we answer with our own knowledge and all we are teaching them is that they need to have us there to answer their questions. Instead we need to use the scriptures ( mainly the Book of Mormon) to help them to realize that the Book of Mormon can answer any questions we may have, both temporal and spiritual concerns. It was a really great training. I also received the package from you on Monday, and you'll hear more about that in the letter I sent you. I finally bought a cable to upload pictures to the computer, but I forgot it!!! Next week I will send tons of pictures. On Tuesday we had our Zone Temple trip. The Oakland Temple is amazinly beautiful. I will also send pictures of that. It was so nice to have that opportunity to be in the temple and feel the peace inside. On Wednesday I had my New Missionary Follow-Up. It was just so good to hear from the Misson President and to talk about our experience in the mission over the past several weeks. I learned a lot of things I need to work on and now I'm officially not a greenie! First transfer ends next week!
I'm glad to hear you and Dad had an awesome anniversary. I didn't forget it I promise.haha I'm so happy for the example of you two in my life. I'm also happy to hear the casita is done. I hope those two can keep it looking nice until I get back.ha I am happy and sad to hear that Brother Sparr got a job. He is such a great guy and I really enjoyed the time being his teaching companion in Primary, he taught me a lot.
I am starting to realize that I was meant to be in this mission. Los Bonillas told me that their daughter knew Abuela and they were so happy to hear that.ha I know that I was meant to be here and have that experience with them. Tell Abuela I say hi to Claudia and that her parents are the sweetest people.
Well I think that's all I have this week. I love you all and thank the family for all their letters. I really appreciated all the cousins letters:) Les quiero mucho!
Love,
Elder Mora

2/13/14

Monday, January 27, 2014

FINALLY GOT WORD FROM ELDER "LJ" MORA!!

Dear Mom/ Family,

Well where do I start. I finally made it to the mission field and I think I got assigned to an awesome area. My area is the San Francisco 6A North area. I cover the whole northern part of San Francisco and it is such a big city. It kind of reminds me of Mexico City a lot with all the graffiti, trash, and interesting smells, but all in all it is a very interesting city with some very beautiful places in town and some not so nice places.ha I cover Down Town San Francisco also and there are all sorts people walking the streets at any time of day. Mostly I deal with Spanish speaking people obviously, and we talk to people from almost every South American country. I have talked with El Salvadorians, Guatemalans, MEXICANS!, Brazilians, and a few other countries. The people in my ward are fantastic. They feed us traditional meals from their respective countries and it is tan rico! Oh by the way the name of my trainer is Elder Yellowhorse and yes he is Native American. He's from Provo, UT and his dad is from the Navajo reservations in Northern Arizona. He is a really young missionary (I'm actually older than him) and I am his first trainee. He is doing a great job and I really enjoy his help with Spanish. We both are new to our area and I guess in the mission field that's called shotgunning an area. I am really inexperienced and he has been out 3 months. It is a struggle to find people to teach in our area and I have been discouraged for last few days. This area is full of really nice people and also a lot of less nice people.  Some times its just hard to find those people that are ready to receive our message. I had plenty of really uplifting experiences despite the lack of success. I had the opportunity to give two blessings and I can't explain how it feels to finally exercise my priesthood to help others feel comfort and feel the blessings of the priesthood. Everything that is happening is for a reason and I know that the Lord will give me opportunities to serve Him. Well besides the area and the struggles, I love being a missionary and get stared at everyday while on the BART ( Bay Area Rapid Transit Train) and I love my ward and district. I'm happy to hear of the happenings at home and love you all. 

Love,
Elder Mora 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

6 MORE DAYS!!

My mission address is: 
Elder Lamoni Mora
California Oakland/ San Francisco Mission
4945 Lincoln Way
Oakland, CA
94602 USA

Dear Family, 

I have six more days in the CCM. I think my spanish is still improving but I still have tons to learn. The conjugations of verb tenses is so hard, but I'll just keep guessing.ha I'm glad to hear Sebastian got braces to fix his teeth, and I'm pretty surprised how much work you guys have done on the casita. Tell Gaby to keep up the good work! I'm glad to hear she's surrounding herself with good friends. Its cool to hear Olivia got that job working wth that little girl, that will be a really good experience for when she has her own kids.haha Let Tyler know that I've gotten several offers for his pink paisley tie, but I've refused to trade it. I guess I have some pretty nice ties because I get complememted on them all the time. I want to say thanks to everyone that gave me a tie! I have one experience that really stuck out to me this week. It was a few days ago during an afternoon class and we were practicing how to use one scripture and apply it to an investigators needs. First we watched a mormon message about an old married couple. The husband had Parkinsons's disease and his wife was restricted to a wheelchair and she couldn't talk or feed herself. The video showed the husband cooking and feeding his wife despite his own disability. It was so amazing to me to see the love that that man had for his wife and all that he did for her. After the video we were supposed to teach another missionary in the class and pretend that they were that man in the video, and teach them something about the gosple. As I started teaching, I talked about the love our Heavely Father has for us and the joy he feels when we do what is right. I can't remember everything I said to the Elder I taught, but as I was teaching I knew he could feel the Spirit and so could I. After I was finished, we were supposed to evaluate based on three things: what doctrine was taught, was the spirit felt, and were the investigators needs met. I asked his the first question and he said he couldn't remember. That surprised me a ton because I had literally just finished teaching.ha Then at that moment I just knew that I had taught by the Spirit. I understood that it didn't really matter what I had taught him because the Spirit is the real teacher. I asked him the second question and he said he definitely felt the Spirit. I am so grateful for that teaching exercise that we did this week. I think that lesson was different for me because I really cared for the man in the video and I really truely wanted to help him. I know that when we truely love those we teach, the Spirit can be with us to testify of the truth. I love all of you and I'll keep you in my prayers along with the Speas family. I'm so sorry for their loss. Samuel was a huge example to me and I know we will all see him again. 

With Love, 

Elder Mora

Thursday, January 2, 2014

NEW YEAR'S DAY!

Dear Family, 

All is well at the CCM. Our New Year´s was like a regular day. We had hamburgers and curly fries for dinner so that´s about the most that we celebrated. I only have two more weeks down here till I´m out and I can´t wait to get into the field. Two other elders in my district are serving in Oakland also so they´ll be on the plane with me. My spanish skills are improving and I´m learning a lot about the Gospel and how to teach. I still haven´t gotten that package you sent Mom but I´m hoping it gets here soon. Love you all! and Happy New Years!

Love, 
Elder Mora