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