Behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass. ~Alma 37:6

Behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass. ~Alma 37:6

January 30, 2012

Hey Family!

My new son/comp. is Elder Kenneth Berkeley Batz Garcia! He is from Juchanep, Totonicapan, Guatemala. He is super awesome, pilas (strong) and nice. I am pretty sure he came pre-trained. He has a great attitude and is very tranquilo. He is doing great here. He has 1 brother and 4 sisters and his mom. His dad is working in the United States right now for the family.

Ha ha hey, that would be really neat if you sent him your famous Greenie Welcome Kit! Something like that to help him feel welcome and have some treats for the start of his mission. Remember, he is my son ha ha my legacy has to live on through him.

And I got to stay in Jinotepe!!! Elder Gaytan went, I think he went back to the Masaya Zone. Here it is great. The ward is starting to relive thanks to the Noches de Fortificación Plan (Fortifications Nights Plan) that Elder Gaytan started with me and the Elders Quorum President.

Ah! I can’t believe I am actually going to say it but it has been... COLD. I don’t know why but it has been really cold here in Jinotepe lately it’s great. It isn’t supposed to be raining right now but this last week has had a few showers. My comp calls it "Llovisna" (light rain showers).

Hey my new comp and I have had a couple great lessons about the Book of Mormon with a couple families this last week. In one family, we brought enough copies of the Book of Mormon so that everyone including the kids could read along as we explained the Book of Mormon and why it is so important.

They had a lot of questions. But in the end the whole family was able to understand why Joseph Smith said the quote that is in the introduction of the book. We were even able to show them how the Bible and the Book of Mormon work hand in hand by reading, Matthew 3:13-15 and 2 Nephi 31

Hannah asked why I was on a yellow tractor last week? Ha ha ha well, we are teaching a young man named Leonel. And right now they are fixing the dirt streets where he lives and they park the tractors in his yard when they are not using it. So I had to take a few photos.... But we did service the week before with the ward, mowing the futbol field (with machetes) of a local school.

I am so grateful that I have the opportunity to train. I hope I can do a good job and that Elder Batz will have the patience he needs to train me too. ha ha. He is going to be a great missionary here.

The updates are great. Good luck everybody with the stuff you’ve got going on! I am always praying for you!

Love you,

Elder Hardy

p.s. I love you

p.p.s. I like the obedience golf game idea.

Thanks Mom.

January 23, 2012

Dearest Familia,

Thank you for the notes about the funeral, family. Sounds like Grandpa's funeral was beautiful. I'm sure Grandpa was proud. I just saw the video of the military service at his funeral, that is really neat. I am so proud of my Grandpa.

Yes, I have changes. But not just that... I'm going to be a Dad!!! Ha ha that means I am going to train a newby this change! I am so excited, but nervous at the same time. Last week they told me because I had to go to a capacitación (training) to learn about the new training program. (Well I guess it’s not that new. But for me, sí.)

Now training a new missionary takes 12 weeks (two changes) and we get an extra hour and a half of study time! You guys need to send me ideas and tips for me with my new comp. so I can train him good and so he doesn’t get bored in our extra hour long companion study.

We still don’t know who is going to change from the area, me or Elder Gaytan. But I am hoping I get to stay. Plus, if I left I would have to open up a new area and I don’t think that President will do that.

OK, so recently in our area here in Las Villas 2, Jinotepe, we have been doing great. We haven’t baptized for a little bit which is bad. But we are teaching about 9 families right now, and I am planning to baptize all of them with the help of the Light that is going to come with my nuevicito.

There is a future missionary that we have been teaching for the last two weeks. He is totally ready for his baptism. He tells us that he doesn’t have any more questions about the Church and he is reading and learning lots from the Book of Mormon. He was going to be baptized this weekend but he couldn’t come to church Sunday because everyone in his family left Sunday morning so he had to stay and guard the house.

Of the 9 families we are teaching, I think I already told you about our one investigator. Her husband is super pilas (strong) and after a month of being reactivated is now the Young Men President and is helping a ton. She knows the church is true and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God. And she has come to church for the past two months. But she still doesn’t feel like she wants to get baptized. So maybe you guys could pray for her too so she can finally make the decision.

We have another new family that we have started to teach, a husband, wife and their two kids. They are very positive and the Dad wanted to go to church Sunday but he had to do an errand for his work and didn’t get back in time. The last lesson we had with them was very touching. The Mom started to say the last prayer and started to cry and the Dad stepped in and finished it. It was great.

Well this last week, I didn’t not have any baptisms in my area. But I got to go to the baptisms of two really pilas kids in El Rosario. I was able to get to know them and help them out a little bit before they committed to be baptized and I also got to go do their interviews and so they and their family invited us to the baptism. They are both really excited to be future missionaries. I could only help a little in their conversion, but it was really neat to see, from the first time we got to know them to the baptismal interview, the change in their eyes. And how strong of a testimony they could gain.

It started when Elder Buc and Elder Styles found them one day. They talked to the Mom and she confessed that she is a member for a long time and that she went inactive when she moved from her home town. When I passed by with Elder Styles and we got to know them and the Dad a little better too. We wanted to invite the family to be baptized, but the Mom confessed that she was still waiting on some divorce papers so it would take a while for her and her future husband to get married. But the kids were still excited and said that they wanted to follow the example of Jesus Christ. I told them as we left that I looked forward to the day when I could come back and see them (for the interview) and that day came a lot faster than I thought.

Hey I sure did get to meet Elder Nelson!!! Like most of the times every missionary got to shake his and his wife’s hand. He asked me what my name was and she asked me where I was from. And I said, Utah... Salt Lake City, Utah. Ha ha that is neat that Mom got a letter from him a long time ago.

I love you sweet family,

Elder Hardy

ps I love you.

January 16, 2012

Hey Dad,

Thanks for the email, and for sharing the message from Grandpa.

Of course, even though you know that I take a long time to think about things and write, I will try my best with the time I have.

In Memory of
Grant W. Weiler
Grandpa Weiler was a very special man to me. He really was/is one of the biggest parts of the pride I have for my family. Being able to grow up closely to him has been a very big influence in my life. Since I can remember we were able to go and visit Grandpa´s house almost every weekend and spend time with the family. It soon became a favorite thing to ask every Sunday afternoon, "Are we going to Grandma and Grandpa's house?"

Mostly I remember Grandma´s mashed potatoes, but I remember as a younger kid always wondering why Grandpa´s ear would make a high pitched beep noise every once in a while. As far as I was, Grandpa was always a highly respected figure Sunday afternoons, ESPECIALLY if he was taking a nap. I remember if we were watching TV, he would always put it on mute for the commercials, and I never understood because I always wanted to see... and hear the commercials.

I also know and continue to recognize Grandpa as a card shark. When I was finally admitted into the circle, he was always one to learn from.

When we pulled out the ping pong table, well I know I was never really good at ping pong. But losing to Grandpa was very humiliating and inspiring. He told me once a story of his ping pong championship days. He was really young and was in a ping pong tournament (I think it was of his Ward I can’t remember). He told me that in the championship match, he was against an adult who was like professionally good. And he told me the secret to how he won (that guy and me).

He was never one for smashing it really hard, and against this guy what he was just able to do was just barely return it each time. Nothing crazy, but constantly he was able to just barely return it. Each time, the opponent would get a little more impatient, a little more irritated. Until finally during the match his opponent got frustrated and lost his patience, hitting it too hard and losing his focus. And that is how he won.

That is how he beat me too. He sure wasn’t fast, and he could never hit it hard. But he consistently returned it until I made a mistake. That is a really valuable thing I learned from Grandpa that day. You don’t have to always hit it harder to win, that is how you lose control and make mistakes. You just have to be constant and diligent.

Some of the best Spring and Summer days I can remember in my life, I have passed in the garden of Grandpa Weiler. I learned a lot more than how to prune a bush or clean out the garden bed, (without cleaning out the flowers too). Something about diligently and patiently working with nature impacted me.

And I figured out why Grandpa told me he had always liked to work in his garden. I think it had been a secret to help him with everything from his physical health, to his work, and his marriage. A couple of hours in the garden with Grandpa each week would help any grandson become a man. And I had the privilege of taking it all for myself (and not having to share it).

The precious hours I could spend serving with him will always have a large impact on my life. I love him so much, and I guess I will have to wait until I finish a mission that’s a little bit longer to be able to give him that hug. But I can promise you that I am going to have a lot more than a beautiful garden in that mission, thanks to him.

I love you all,

Be at peace at Grandpa´s funeral and give him a tulip for me.


Elder Hardy

ps I love you

January 9, 2012

Dear Familia,

Hey! That is neat that it snowed for once! Ha ha I really have thought that it might begin to snow here in Jinotepe too! It is pretty cold and when it rains it’s not like a normal rain. It’s like you’re in the middle of a cloud or something. Because you get wet, but you can’t tell from what direction the rain is coming from because it’s floating around in the air. Kinda cool.

I haven’t used my artificial snow from Jacob yet, maybe I will try to use it tonight in a Family Home Evening.

Hey! You guys better reach your goal of reading the Book of Mormon before I get home. Because when I get home, we are going to have a Book of Mormon Question game. Maybe the prizes will be souvenirs. Ha ha.

Hey, this week has been great. We had 2 families in Sacrament Meeting. We have found a few really neat families that want to listen to our message. I decided to try and make it easier on myself to find "chosen" families. Yep, I decided, well, maybe I should just ask them if they think they are a chosen family. Ha ha and it is going pretty good. We present ourselves, we get to know them a little bit, and we present a little bit about what our message is... and ask them if they feel like God has prepared their family to listen to our message, change their lives and follow Jesus Christ.

This week I went on divisions with some members of the District to see how they and their areas are doing. The photos I sent are of me and Elder Buc playing "baseball" real fast with the kids of a family.

Ha ha oh but lots of exciting and spiritual stuff has happened. Something exciting is that the Adventistas, (Adventists of the Seventh Day) are trying to convert us. Last week, we contacted a really nice older couple. They let us in and talked with us and it turns out they are very strong Adventistas. The Husband is a smart good guy and likes everything about the Restoration (pretty much the only difference with them is who was the prophet that restored the church (and when is the Sabbath Day)).

He just wanted evidence of a prophesy that Joseph Smith gave to prove him a real prophet. So we talked to him for a while and presented him the Book of Mormon and told him that it was the evidence. He is literally going to read the whole thing, and I believe him. We invited him to church and well... he invited us to his.

Ha ha so guess what we did Saturday, we went to their Church! It was great! Everyone was very nice and welcoming to us, their meetings have many similarities to ours too. We went normal in our suit and tie and placa and everything. They recognized us like five times in the meeting, and three of the five times they asked us to stand up so everyone could say hi. The Sunday class was interesting, poor teacher had a stressful time with two Mormon missionaries participating, asking questions and reading scriptures. In the end it was nice, nobody tried to fight with us.

But after the meeting we went to talk to the five leaders in charge and they started inviting us to young men/young women activities ha ha and we invited them to our church. In the end, there were only a few things with their meeting that I didn’t like, but something was missing. And one of the things that I just couldn’t get out of my head is that there, my family can’t be eternal. And hey, the next day the family and another friend we got to know in their church came to our Sacrament Meeting. They even gave us a ride in their van!

PS to dad, no, no son los evangelicos que echan afuera los demonios (y casi su compañero) como me contó de su mission. (No, they are not the evangelicals who cast out demons (and almost your companion) like you told me on your mission). But I’m planning on going one of these days (to see the Evangelicos).

We had a District Leader Conference a couple of weeks ago and it was great. But actually there is a GA coming this month...Elder Nelson!

Hannah asked about my favorite food in Jinotepe? Hmm. I really like the Batidos. Ha ha the milk shakes. Umm and Nacatamales. We have some investigators that make really good ones.

I love you all so much,

Elder Hardy

ps. I love you

January 2, 2012

¡Feliz Año Nuevo! (Happy New Year!)

I hope it was fun!

Ha ha ha awesome photos of golfing family. Wow, what is up with that? Golfing and sledding in the same week? You must be in Utah!

Hey say bye and "buena suerte" “good luck” to Elder Poulson from me if you get the chance before he leaves!

Hey yeah! Aunt Debbie & Uncle Steve and cousins package. We got it this last week. And it was Awesome!!! Thank you so much Debbie, Steve and cousins! Two big packs of goldfish, a bunch of Gatorade packs, my favorite granola bars and a cool science project that makes instant snow. (I am going to figure out a way to use it as an object lesson or something with some recent converts.) And a nice Christmas card. It was very nice of them and helped keep us animated for this new year working in La obra del Señor. (The Lord’s work)

The Missionary Newsletter! I sure just barely got it! I read it last night in the house when we couldn’t sleep because all of the explosions outside! Thank you so much for sending that it was really great to see how everyone is doing and motivate me to do even better this year.

For New Years, well, we worked like normal! But an Older member of the Ward died the 31st and so in the late tarde (afternoon) we went to see her vela (viewing) with the other members and show her our support. We also took a picture with a "Viejo" (older man) and I gave him a Word of Wisdom pamphlet because he had a beer can in his hand, but that was about it.

New Year’s resolutions?! Ha ha ha good goals Mom and Dad (losing weight). But I dunno Dad. That is going to be a hard one, especially because I have one of the bodies that has actually lost weight in the mish. But I will try and make it easier on you. Me and my comp have also made an exercise goal. It’s called plan: "esposa bonita" (beautiful wife) and we are going to start tomorrow. And I am going to try and eat better so I can gain some weight too.

Thanks for the updates family. Sounds like everything is going great. Hey younger sisters, you have to finish up the school year strong ok? And I’m really not toooo worried about Zelda, you guys will probably get stuck anyway and have to wait for me to get back to help you out :) ha ha

I love you so much,

Elder Hardy

ps I love you