Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Letter #18 Feliz Navidad

How is everyone!?.... since yesterday. haha Yesterday was so much fun!! It was ncie to hear from everyone!! And supposedly you can have an hour to talk to your family on the phone and then a half hour to skype them.... so sorry about that. haha I fell asleep during all the skyp-age...... then i woke up in a different room on a different bed. so either im sleep wlaking, or the little chicos know how to lift a 76 kg person a pretty far distance without the person they are moving knowing.... ill go with the sleep walking.
lately ive been falling asleeep everywhere!! i think i have3 a disease. if i am sitting still, not moving, i instantly fall asleep.... this disease/curse happens a lot!! during lunch, while eating, studying, praying, waiting for my turn to play volleyball....etc. so yeah, basically i am known for the elder who sleeps everywhere, and the elder who talks to the kids first before anyone.

I swear, I can only understand kids now-a-days... which is weird considering they only speak in vos... but yeah..... i speak pretty good chico spanish. now i jsut need to work on the adult, mature, castagano.... hopefully that goes well.

we had a good turnout at our caroling project this week. we had about 25 people singing and we went to probably 25ish houses which all had about 4-7 people in them. i think we made the record for most contacts in a day ;). but it was cool, the family that we went caroling with said taht all the people that night said that us elders looked like angels and that we were glowing..... I know i look good.... but glowing? seriously ;)

Oh and chirstmas eve we went to the urquiza´s family house and partied.  we had a pretty funny experience there. we went inside to watch the christmas devotional.... which was amazing!!! even if i only understood some of it.... then after we went back inside and watched the top 20 music videos of the year.... which had some with rihanna where she is almost butt naked.... so it went from listening to the prophet, and then watching/listening to the devil. haha luckily us elders had an escape route where we went up on the stairs and just talked...

Then that night at midnight, the firework show started! and lasted for about 45 minutes. and one of the fireworks taht one of the members tried ot light off fell over and it shot into the house and blew up. it was legit. i felt like i was in Call of Duty for real haha. and then the member threw up a huge firecracker to where us elders were and so we would´ve lost that call of duty round... haha it was a fun christmas eve thats for sure!

today we went to walmart!! nothing to exciting.... because i didn´t find any eggnog.... :P 

so yeah... one of the people we carolled to, we ended up putting a baptismal date with him the next day for the 21 of january!

all is good here! i hope everyone is safe and healthy! dont do anything i wouldn´t do :)

Love, Elder Do-Do Gray

Monday, December 19, 2011

Letter #17

Feliz Navidad!!

How is everyone!? Is it a white christmas?, because here it is! (white baptismal clothes)

We jsut had three baptisms. Lautero, Mauro, y Amanda! they are legit. i love them.  I had the opportunity to baptize Lautero (lauti) and it was awesome!! I didn´t even mess up the prayer!

It was kinda cool too... i felt like i actually contributed to their conversion because Mauro and Lauti chose me to do the baptism. But I guess that there is an unwritten rule that i can´t baptise mroe than one person or something. ahah but it was still a good feeling to get chosen.

Its amazing how fast Christmas is coming. Its only been like 3 months sicne i´ve left!! weird. Ill be calling you guys in a week! Maybe i´ll be skyping, who knows. 

Recently, we had transfers so now I have a new companion!! his name is elder richter from Lousiana. He´s been out for 14 months and he has the language down really good. elder larson is stayin in my pension and he´s going to be a trainer!! so we´ll be having a newby in our pension.... probably a latino.... who will speak better than me.... :P but whatev. Im staying in the same area, La Madrid/20 de Junio. Me and my companion work in 20 de Junio but our pension is in la madrid witht he other elders.

For christmas here its kinda like a fourth of july. they light off fireworks at midnight and then they dish out the presents that night. its pretty intense.  we´ll be chilling at the Urquiza´s house for that night then we´ll be chilling at the church the whole christmas day playing ping pong and stuff. so we´ll see what happens!!

What are your plans for christmas? anything out of the ordindary?

I heard that the ward party/caroling went pretty good. I love that day. definitely one of my favorite days of the year.

When are the Castagnetto´s going to move? same with the Holmsteads?. haha

stuff this week:
1. baptisms!!!! legit!!!
2. transfers! legit!!

we were focusing a lot on our baptisms this week so i dont have any cool stories :P this week hopefully i will!

What do you all want for christmas?

I hope we can all remember that Christmas is all about gifts. Gifts we can give to others. But most importantly the Gift that our Heavenly Father gave us, Jesus Christ. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and I can´t wait to talk with you all!!

Hasta Luego!

elder Gray

Monday, December 12, 2011

Letter #16

6. We have three people being baptized this week!
7. The christmas devotional happened, and i didn´t get to see it yet :P
8. I had an intercambio with Elder Monzon
9. I told an investigator that i thought the girls here in Argentina are pretty without realizing it....
10. I found out why god put me in Argentina

6. I lied, i thought we had three but that is this week!!! Mauro, Amanda, and Lautero.
7. Yeah, that part sucked :P
8. I went to the area called Parque Capital (my teacher in the MTC went here too), and i got to spend the whole day with a latin who doesn´t speak english at all. such an amazing experience. we met a couple of people who were amazing. this one lady said she was a catholic and she believed in the bible and god, but then she said that she doesn´t believe that God could´ve created the earth..... I was like, " Lady, you do realize that the creation is the first book in the Bible, its called Genesis..." people these days. haha i love it.
9. yeah, that was just embarrasing, i thought she asked if i thought argentina was pretty and so i said yeah... then elder thomson told me i said the girls here are pretty.
10. God is amazing. He really knows where im supposed to be. I love the argentina people. they are obsessed with Messi, Barcelona, Boca, Belgrano, Good bread, sleeping in till 12, going to bed past midnight, eating sweets, playing soccer, making jokes, and lots of other stuff. I know that I am supposed to be here. the people are just like me.

this week:

So a lot of miracles happened this week. We had a baptism!!!!! Her name is Ninet. She is the daughter of our ward mission leader. she is from bolivia and we have been teaching her for about a month now. she said that one day she wants to be baptised and we put a fecha with her for the 24 of december. then we found out that she was leaving the 16. so we were like, crap... she needs to come to church another time before she can get baptized. so we lost all hope of baptizing her before she left. so we put her out of our minds.  we went throughout the week kinda bummed that we weren´t going to get to baptize her. but then, this last saturday she called us at 10:00 pm and was like, elders, i need you to come over so i can tell you something. so elder ferreira and elder larson went over. they came back and said that she said that god told her that she needed to be baptized before she left to bolivia....... HECK YEAH!!!!...... so yeah, the next morning, (with permission from the zone leaders), she had her interview at 7:00, and her baptism was at 8:30 (an hour before church started).

God is amazing.... This last month of november we didn´t have any baptisms. and it is soly (dont know how to spell that) due to our pride. The month before the elders had 6 baptisms and so they were way stoked, and so was i. but then my first week here, if you remember, we had a huge rainstorm and no one came to church. this set us off our plans for our next couple of baptisms. later we found out that we were the only place in Córdoba that had a rainstorm that day, and every other district had a lot of people show up to church that day.

So we repented. and God accepted our repentance with a baptism. "Oh how lovely was the morning, when Elder Gray had his first Baptism!". And hopefully this week all of our investigators this week will be baptized as well. :)

We visited Luis, the man who´s wife died, and he´s awesome!!! He really loves the hyms and so he went and pulled out his old organ that he has, and i played and sang him hyms for about a half an hour. Then after we shared about how god has a plan for us. I feel like i have known Luis for forever!! now every time we go over there, we play a couple of hymns, share a spiritual thought, then he gives us his "besos", the argentine kiss thing, then we leave.

Mom, i can testify, that playing the organ is a lot harder than playing the piano. but its awesome. We´ll have to continue playing/learning when i get back. Good luck with it!

This week we had our mission conference! it was super fun. President salas dressed up as santa clause and gave us all our packages. I got one!! legit!! thanks fam. i can´t wait to open it!

At the conference, Pres talked about how we need to do better. He dropped some "Cain" on us! he sounded like a little Elder Holland. He said that we had a goal of improving 33% from last year and right now, if we are to make it, we need to baptise about 100 mor people as a mission. And he said that if we dont do it, he´s not going to go to the area president with his "blood stained hands"..... it was legit. i actually understood him a lot.

I went on another intercambio with Elder Jones, the zone leader,.... dun dun dun.... but it was really good. he is a contacting machine!!!! we had a funny experience with this one lady we tried to contact. she opened her window and asked us what we wanted, then i was like, we have a message for you. Then she said that they were Catholic. elder Jones said, "oh, so you believe in God and Jesus Christ?" she said yes. Then he said, " well good, we´d like to share a message about Christ and how through his Gospel..." then the lady cut him off and said, "im Catholic, and we have a different belief than you." so he said, "oh , so you don´t believe in God and Jesus Christ." .... she paused.... and then she let us in... it was legit. haha  Edler jones is legit. when we´d contact one door, then we´d get rejected, heéd be at the next door before i could turn around. I learned a lot about contacting that day. He said, "we´re either bringing salvation or damnation to their souls." hahahahahahaha so we just need to contact everyone!

So yeah, this week we have three baptisms planned. Mauro and Amanda. they´re married, have two kids, and they are amazing! every tuesday, we play basquet with Mauro and his friends, and we´ve received a couple of references from him. Then we have Lautaro, who is their nephew, the Son of Pablo and Alejandra, (who can´t get baptized yet because they have to wait for their marriage papers) and he is a freaking capo!! he´s so strong in the gospela nd he´s only 11. i love that kid. so hopefully after this week i´ll have 4 baptisms total!

I hope everyone is doing good! Dad, you need to see the doctor, its better that you get better right now than suffering for forever! Have fun in Florida! Have a fun Christmas! its weird that i´ll get to talk to you guys in 13 days!! :)

Love you all, have a great week!

2 Nephi 31:20

Elder Gray

 20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a asteadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of bhope, and a clove of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and dendure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eeternal life.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Letter #15

Did you guys get my pictures that I attached to the last letter? hopefully. haha

How are you all! I can´t believe that i have already been out here three months!! im already done with 1/8 of my mission.... how crazy is that? but something even crazier to think is that Elder Thomson only has 2 weeks left in his entire mission. He says it feels like yesterday he was arriving. It really is true. We dont have enough time to be here. its all moving by so quickly.

This week´s highlights:
1. i bought a huge piece of bread, (bigger than my head) for only 4 pesos!! thats a dollar... haha
2. I met my first blind person (i think)
3. I met a random lady on the road that said she has a picture of me and elder thomson on her fridge.... so we´re starting to teach her this wednesday. haha
4. Someone was stabbed to death on the other side of a block of one of our member/investigator´s house an hour after we passed by there.
5. I earned a kilo of ice cream for eating something "really picante" (but what they dont realize is that i have grown up eating hot stuff my entire life)
6. We have three people being baptized this week!
7. The christmas devotional happened, and i didn´t get to see it yet :P
8. I had an intercambio with Elder Monzon
9. I told an investigator that i thought the girls here in Argentina are pretty without realizing it....
10. I found out why god put me in Argentina

1. Yes, i found a huge piece of bread, bigger than mine or elder thomson´s head, that was only 4 pesos. this was my lunch and dinner for a day. It was right before i went to play soccer for the first time here in Argentina, which felt amazing by the way. 8 elders running around sweating profusely, while it felt like it was raining, but it wasn´t. (its so HUMID!)

2. So this week we decided that we´d try to find more people to teach. and so we did that. and the stake gave us an assignment to search out the less active memebers and find out why they were not coming. so we did that too. we found this man named Luis (i think). He answered the door like any other person and started talking to us. then after about 2 minutes he opened the door some more and i saw his walking cane. just then i figured our that he was blind. I had no idea!! it was cool
2b. We met another man at church and visited him at his house this sunday. he said his wife died this last week and so he wanted to come to church. we are teaching his this week.

3. On the way to Luis´s house, i saw a lady coming down the street and so i stepped out of the way of her. then she stepped into the way of me, so i stepped out of the way of her again. then she stepped into my way again and then we almost ran into each other. she started talking really fast but from what i understood is that she has seen us before..... picture..... on fridge..... so im guessing that means that she has a picture of us on her fridge. Elder thomson said he wasn´t sure what she said either, so we decided to go visit her this wednesday.

4. So we were at the House of one of our investigators, Pablo. We were chilling talking to him about his family and how his son Lauti ( a freaking stud byt he way) wanted to be like us elders and be a good example and such.
4b. This last friday we had a little get together at the church for all of our recent converts and progressing investigators. so Pablo and Alejandra came with their kids: Lauti, Brenda, Milagros, Santiago, Catalina. Then they put me and elder larson in charge of taking care of the kids (bad idea), so we were playing soccer outside and Lauti threw the ball at my face. it really hurt. then he said he was sorry and we went inside. then we went intot hte primary rooma nd started playing again. Elder Larson went into another room with Lauti and he taught him about being a good example and such with his family. it was cool.
4c. in the meentime, elder thomson was having a bomb lesson with Alejandra and pablo about temple work and then we found out that they had a daughter that died at the age of 2. so alejandra was crying. it was cool.

5. the sauce was weak... that sums it up. haha

the rest will wait till next week!

I hope all is good.

Elder Gray


Monday, November 28, 2011

Letter #14


¿Que Hacen negrasonoóoonones?  That literally translates to "Whats up, negros.".... jaja

I am kinda jealous of you guys in Hawaii, but then again... I am in Argentina, and I do have a sweet watch/ring/neckline tanline already :)

So really, if you wanted to buy me those shirts.... I´d be ok with it. haha who all went to Hawaii anyways? whats the food like? how much is the milk? We definitely need to go back when I can go as well :) please dad? haha

This week has been crazy!!! We had 24 investigators at church yesterday! it was so awesome. Our plan of using the investigators only is really starting to work. We have 7 baptism dates in december. A lot of the time, elder thomson and i have just been walking around trying to find the houses that we have received addresses.  one time we got lost and found ourselves in the Cordoba jungle.... (one of the pictures included) and we also have had a lot of success with people keeping their committments. The gonzalez family have been awesome this week. Mauro, one of the investigators, always is inviting me to play "basquet" with him on Tuesday´s and thursdays. so this week i think im going to go show him and his Argentine friends how to play some american basketball. after the four of us (yo, elder thomson, elder larson, elder ferreira) are going to try to have one big lesson with everyone that comes.

oh yeah, last p-day, i had the chance to go into the Belgrano stadium :) boo-yeah. i seriously am contemplating buying a jersey. Its weird, ive been here for 3 weeks and i have yet to play a single game of futból. its all about playing volli here.

I eat in member´s homes and in our pension. The other elders were playing a trick on me when i first got there. We actually really do have a kitchen and a bathroom.  The only thing we dont have that i really miss is a microwave. :( oh how us americans are spoiled. 

so this week was thanksgiving!!

Ten things i am greatful for:
1. My amazing mother. She is the best! Without her, i literally would not be here right now. haha thank your for giving birth to me.
2. My amazing dad. if you know my dad, you already know how awesome of a father/person he is.
3. My amazing family. without them, i would not be here right now. and plus, time to time, they offer me comic relief :)
4. My friends. They are what made me the person i am right now. They are the best friends i could ever ask for.
5. The chance I have to go to College. I am sincerely greatful for my opportunity to obtain knowledge so that i can better my future for me and my future spouse and kids.
6. Air conditioning. I continuosly sweat while i am in people´s houses. its kinda awesome. its definite knowledge that i wont gain weight while im here.
7. carpet. I found some carpet the other day and layed down on it. Ive never been so confortable in my entire life.
8. The knowledge of the plan of salvation. I know where I was before this life, why I am here, and where I am going. A lot of people don´t know this, so they dont have anything to live for.
9. The knowledge of the restauration. I know that the same authority that was on the earth durign the time of christ has been restored. The same miracles that happened at the time of christ can happen again.
10. I will forever be greatful for the atoning sacrifice of my Savior Jesus Christ. Without this sacrifice, there is no way I could return into the loving arms of a loving father in heaven. I deeply realized how much we need him this week.

we were teaching a couple, the brother of Mauro, Claudio and his GF Annahi. They are mad at god for the bad things that have happened to him in their life. for example: Claudio´s father died. Annahi´s aunt and cousin died from diabetes. they both suffered for many years too.  During this  lesson, i was having a hard time understanding what was going on. but all i know is that i had this overpowering love for them. A love that was the most powerful love i have ever felt. It wasn´t that i loved them this much, it was that God was showing me how much he loved them. During this whole lesson, Annahi and I started to cry. I knew right then i should bear my testimony of what i had just felt. So i did.

I know that we are all sons and daughters of a loving heavenly father. he loves us so much that he sent his Beloved Son, to come to the earth and show us how to return to him.  Life is not fair, nor never will it be. Life wasn´t meant to be fair. How can we expect it to be easy for us, as sinners, when it was most difficult for a perfect person, a son, begotten of God himself. Jesus Christ had the hardest life ever in the earth and it will be the hardest life ever to be forever. once again, life wasn´t meant to be easy, because salvation was NEVER easy.

I know that when I am rejected of people here, when I am spit upon, when I am cursed at, when I an denied and betrayed, I am only becoming one step closer to being shoulder to shoulder with a perfect son of God. I love Christ, I am forever eternally greatful for what he has done for me. The more time I spend here, the more I realize how much he suffered for us and how much we owe him.

Man i wish i could do that in spanish.... one day i will be able to. haha

I love you all and hope you have a fun time in Hawaii and whatever else you are doing. :)

Elder Gray

Monday, November 21, 2011


We think this is the Buenos Aires temple under renovation, not positive though.

Mission President & wife, Collin, and guessing companion again.

Mission President & Wife and Collin

His living quarters.

Letter #13

Hola! Como Andan? Todo bien?
Este semana fue loco!!
There are a lot of things that I need to get used to here....
1. There is no such thing as carpet. In homes its either dirt, concrete, or tile. So when I actually see carpet... I start freaking out... haha
2. The bidee thing is killing me... haha
3. Everyone is offering me food. Food here: carne, carne grande, carne, arroz, carne, dulces, leche, carne, some tang stuff that is good
4. Everyone trying to add me on facebook. "Let me add you on facebook so I can talk to your family about you!" haha its funny
5. How fat the alfajors are going to make me. they are so delicious!
6. The fact that my suit is going to be ruined. a. because its seems to always rain when im walking in it. b. because im doing to be so fat
7. The matéish tea here is delicious. a. all i know is that if my comp drinks it, i can :)
8. The bus drivers are CRAZY! In the states, theres a ton of rules about you having to be seated while the bus is going. Here, they barely wait for you to get on the bus before they start going again. its kinda fun to try and keep your balance.
9.  Getting called a devil.
10. People looking at my name tag before looking at my face.
I love it here!!! God knew I was supposed to be here. The one thing that I dont like about it here is how I can not yet speak spanish totally. I can understand a lot of it, unless they are speaking in Cordabéis (a weird accent) but I can´t speak as well as i wan´t. It´s a lot different thant he MTC spanish too. the MTC spanish is all about the gospel and the words we use for that. but here its all about the world, and the world´s words for everything.
We have been teaching everyone!! Elder Larson came up with a way that we can get atleast 8 referalls from every member in our ward. and it works. we have about 30 people we still need to contact on our list. and the good thing about it is that 25% of the people we contact this way actually want to learn more.
This last saturday was a disappoint... :( We were supposed to have one of our investigators get baptized. her name is Melani.  She is amazing!!! She´s one of the people I can really talk to and understand. She´s 17 and she loves the gospel. She is really feasting upon the words of Christ. She had her date for this last saturday and she passed her interview. She even gave me permission to be the one to baptize her. but when we went to have her mom sign the record so that she could get baptized, her mom refused....
So.... she went to ask her dad to sign it (he´s in carcel), and he said that if anyone in her family signed it, he would never speak to their family again. So.... Satan knows that she is a perfect baptismal candidate, so he is doing everything he can to stop her from progressing. Freakin Satan, I hate him. But one thing I do know is that somehow, someway, God will prepare the way for her to be baptized. Elder Larson said that it happens a lot out here. They have people ready to be baptized, but Satan does something to stop it. then he said, "Satan wins battles, but God will win the war."..... BOOM!!! I know he will win this war with Melani.
We have been teaching a lot of families. A lady named Lorena is a member but her entire family is not. Her brothers are, Mauro, Pablo, Adrian, and Claudio. So we are teaching them, and their families. It´s awesome. They are an amazing, BIG, family and they will be a blessing to the ward here.
Elder Thomson is amazing. He´s so fluent its crazy. Ill hear someone that i think is talking so fast that he´s doing it on purpose and then elder Thomson turns to me and says, " he wants to know your name. " haha, its fun. He´s from Sacramento..... wow, thats basically all i can remember, thats horrible. haha I need to talk about him more. he´s never had a snowy christmas, he´s goingt o byu after his mission i think. he gets home the 21st of December. haha ill have more about him next week.
Well thats about the jist of my week. I hope you are all doing "de diez!"
Elder Gray
Im goign to try and send pictures.... but I dont know how with this piece of junk computer.
And possibly some funny videos of my first real day... haha

Monday, November 14, 2011

Letter #12

During my travels here in Cordoba, all I have to say is three letters.... W. O. W.
This is crazy!! They don´t teach me how to use a bideé in the MTC. haha that was a fun experience.  Como estan ustedes? La Español aqui es muy differente que la Español en el CCM. Todos hablan con el Castagano accent. La primer vec yo caminé en mi hogar, pensí que, "voy a morir".... pero está bien ahora!!
When I first got to BUenos Aires, I thought I was going to die, then I got to Cordoba and to the Mission Presidents house and I felt like this is the best place for me to be.  I arrived in my house and it was no bigger than dad´s shop for all four of us.  there was no bathroom, shower, etc. all that we had were four beds and one night stand.  I will send you a video and some pictures once I can, but i forgot to bring my connector thingy... :P
Mi compañero es Elder Thompson de Sacramento, California. He has 5 weeks left!! Its nice not to have a local because now i can actually understand what people are asking me.  Its weird, they said at the MTC that I´ll be able to understand more than I can speak once I got out here.... NO WAY. I can understand a couple of sentences here or there, and I can speak pretty good. There are a lot of different phrases that they like to say here that they don´t say anywhere else. So Elder Larson has been helping me with those.  Yesterday (Sunday), we woke up to a storm.  They said its the biggest one that they have been in. The streets were flooded and so we just walked in water the whole day.
The ward here is so nice! Except there were only about 40 people there due to the storm.  We teach the Gospel Principles class and we helped out in primary.
Then Elder Thompson had to do a Entrevista de Bautismal (Can´t remember the words in english), and so he didn´t want me spending my first day sitting outside of the Entrevista. I went on a split with Elder Larson and we went and taught several different people.
During the lessons I just sit there and try to pick out different words. then during, my comp translates what just happened and I try to teach... jaja
Except I dont know their names :P. I can´t understand them jaja.
But, I do know that we taught the Law of Chastity because we barely found out that one of them was not married and their bautismo was on saturday. so now they have a plan to get married la dos de Deciembre and get married the tres. their names are pablo and idk.
We taught Prima (nickname) about why God lets bad stuff happen. after the lesson, given by elder larson, haha, She said she will read, pray, and come to church with us next week.
Then there is Daniella. She is sixteen, and she is amazing! I already love her. she didn´t know if she wanted to get bauptized because she wasn´t perfect. after the lesson again given by elder larson.... jaja she said she wanted to get bauptized that next week.
She is amazing, just like everyone else. Its been 36 hours and i already love the people. I just wish I could communicate witht hem better.  Elder Larson and Elder Thompson say that my spanish was their spanish after a month here, so hopefully i can learn it quick.
Elder Larson´s companion is elder Ferreira. He only speaks spanish....FAST.... and its fun trying to communicate with him.
Elder Thompson is an amazing missionary. I can tell that he has had a lot of success due to his guidance by the spirit and by his lessons.  These are amazing missionaries, and im glad that President Salas let me be in the best place ever.
Oh ya, my area is called La Madrid and viente de Junio.
I walk everywhere, eat a ton at lunch, and sleep at 10:30.
un par de veces yo anoto como amigable todas las personas son. Todas las personas y muy humilde.  They have no floor sometimes.  No one has a washing machine or dryer. no one owns a microwave. There are dogs EVERYWHERE.
Oh and the people drive crazy.
The first bus I rode in on my way to the smaller airport got into a crash becasue the people behind us were not paying attentiona nd tried to pass us.... locos.
There are a lot of phrases I need to learn:
Me parece-it looks like to me
o sea- in other words
darse cuenta-to realize
me cuesta- its hard for me
quedarse- to stay
fijarse- to check out
tiene sentido- makes sense
nada que ver- its nothing like that
un par de veces- a couple of times
recien- recently
subirse- to get up
anotar- to note, to notice
pareja- a couple
tiene razón- you´re right
hay que- you should
debe- you must
claro-i understand (Most used word ever!)
No me sale- i can´t do it
mira voz- look at you
rato- a small amount of time
estamos viendo- we´ll see ya
dejar- to put
de vec en cuando- once in a while
chorizo- sausage
puede ser- its possible
choripan- sanwich with a sausage
saca turno- set an appointment
yeah... thats the jist of it.... so far.
We are going to ask for 25 references today from the ward. so it should be interesting how many we get. but if we do get some, that means we´ll have a lot more lessons to teach :)
The bautismal rate here is 2ish a month..... so yeah. this will be fun.
I hope everyone is doing well! Ill see you in 21 ish months... i think.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

He's Arrived!

Dear Missionary Parents,
I am very pleased to inform you that your missionaries have arrived
today! They landed here in Córdoba at about 7 PM, and were personally
received by President Salas, the mission president. Tonight they met
their new companions and left for their areas. Preparation day is on
Monday, so you will be hearing from them then.
Please feel free to email or telephone us if you have any questions or
concerns, etc.
Elder Schlachter
Secretary to the President
Argentina Córdoba Mission
(03543) 420-699

Thursday, November 10, 2011


Just to let you all know.  Collin got his visa and will be flying to Argentina Friday 11-11-11. 
We are excited for him! He will arrive on Saturday morning and get to work!!

The mission home address is:

Elder Collin Robert Gray
Argentina Cordoba Mission
Gay Lussac 5270,Villa Belgrano
Apartado Postal No 49-X5009 ZAA
C.C. 17 Suc 9, Cordoba

If you want to use the pouch mail you have to follow these instructions:

Letter folding instructions.  Lay the letter blank side down.  Fold the bottom of the letter
about one third of the way up the page and crease.  Fold the top of the letter to the
bottom of the first fold and crease.  Secure the long side with two pieces of tape about one
inch in from each end, but do not seal the ends.  In the top left corner write your name
and complete return address.  Affix first class postage in the top right corner. In the middle
write the missionary address as follows.

Elder Collin Robert Gray
Argentina Cordoba Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150

Thanks so much for all your love and support.

Mosiah 2:41
And moreover, I would desire that ye should consider on the blessed and ahappy state of those that keep the commandments of God. For behold, they are bblessed in all things, both temporal and spiritual; and if they hold out cfaithful to the end they are received into dheaven, that thereby they may dwell with God in a state of never-ending happiness. O remember, remember that these things are true; for the Lord God hath spoken it.

Letter #11

Hola mi familia! como andan?
Mi vida aqui en el CCM es igual de todas otras semanas. :P Yo no puedo esparar salir!
The travel office told us that we could be leaving tomorrow (friday), if they get our visas today at lunch or during dinner.... So ill have about 3ish hours to pack my life up to move to argentina for 2 years!
So family, i could be calling you friday.... idk when though, just be prepared.
How is everyone doing?
I heard dad got 3 new suits, and a nice new red  tie :) boo yeah.
How's the ward? is there anything i can do for you all?
This week has been the same, the only thing that really changes is the stuff that i study. Right now im studying the miracles of Jesus Christ.  Its amazing that he could heal leprosy, give the blind sight, heal the lame, etc. But i am even more amazed at how he could change so many hardened hearts to him.  I think that is the greatest miracle of all. All our bodies will become perfect during the resurrection. That is a promise and a gift given from the Father through Jesus Christ. But even though Christ suffered through EVERYTHING, and descended below all that even if we got to our lowest he could still raise us up, we still have the CHOICE to change our hearts and repent. I know that us missionaries help cause miracles every day throught he Atonement of Jesus Christ. I love seeing the light ignite in my investigators eyes when they realize that the spirit is testifying the truth of what we're teaching. Even though there are many languages throughout the world, the spirit still can speak them all and testify in them all. My MTC spanish is horrible and I am not ever going to be fluent in spanish, but I know that the Spirit will testify of the words that I am speaking.
We learned a lot about the spirit in one of our workshops this week. It was about how the spirit testifies. there was a part of the workshop where they showed a video of a lot of different people testifying in their native tongue. I was amazed at how the spirit testified to me when a lady was testifying in cambodian. I do not know anything that she said, but i do know that what she said was true.
Then later in the workshop we talked about how the restoration is the most important thing that we can teach.  IT IS WHAT SETS US APART FROM OTHER CHURCHES. just think, other churches have hymns, believe in christ, believe in god, teach about families, have good morals, have good youth programs, give aid to places in the world that are in need, teach children how to be good people, etc. Some have almost everything that we do. The thing that we have that sets us apart is the knowledge that christ's church, that was set up when he was on the earth, has been RESTORED. we have the same power now, that there we in his time. We can be cleansed through baptism because the priesthood authority has been RESTORED, THROUGH joseph smith.
Antoher thing that impressed me this week is how important the commandments are. THEY ARE COMMANDMENTS. read the scriptures, pray, be obedient, go to church, pay tithing, fast, the law of chastity, word of wisdom etc. I can't stress how important keeping these commandments are. Mosiah 2:41 is a promise FROM GOD that we have when we keep the commandments.
I also received some amazing letters this week!! Us missionaries love receiving letters! so even if you feel the slightest prompting to write one of the missionaries, DO IT!

I love you all and I hope that everything is going well for you, I hope you can get a copy of the Ensign and read throught the conference talks again.
Los Amo,
Elder Gray

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Letter #10

How are you all doing? It was nice to call home this week and talk to my mom about the news I received.
If you didn't hear, I not going to Argentina this week because we didn't receive our Visas.... :P I was super mad when I found out because I am so excited to get out of here!!! I can not wait to teach real peopel the gospel.
It was nice to talk it over with my mom. And im glad she answered the phone, even though she didn't know the number calling. haha. Im sorry family at home, but i could not wait any longer to call home.  The Good news (Gospel) that came from the bad news: I was super mad that I wasn't leaving today. (I am supposed to be on a plane right now). but when i was reading in one of my personal studies right after the call I read in DC 11:16-22. (please read that now) I am super excited to see the stuff that God still has to teach me here. I know everything happens for a reason, and when somethign happens in your life that is unexspected, please look at it as a blessing, look at it as a way God can teach you something.
I also learned this week how cool my ancestors are. I found out that my grandma has written an article in the Ensign. That my 4Great Grandpa was one of the first Jewish converts and that he taught pres. Smith German and Hebrew, and that I am related to David, and lots of other cool people. I hope you all will take the time to go to the familysearch website that the church has set up and search and learn about your ancestors.
I AM SO EXCITED to go to Argentina. I can't wait to give the Argentines what they have been waiting for their entire life.
In one of my classes we were talking about how to contact people. some of the elders were having a hard time doing it without it turning awkward. But I on the otherhand was doing really well, and they asked me how I did it.
I honestly dont know how I did it.  But i look at it as though I have the greatest message in the world that can save families, can help us all to return to god, it can help us recover from any hole that we have dug, no matter how deep, it is the happiest message in the world that we can give. And that is true, the message I have to share is amazing. It can change anyones heart, and I know it can because it has changed mine while I have grown up and its made an even bigger impact on my life here!
I love you all and can't wait to hear from you!!
Keep up the letters :)
Elder Gray

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


My mom received a phone call today from Collin, he said that he hasn't received his visa yet and won't be able to leave on Thursday. Sad day. . Hopefully his visa will come through soon so he can leave for Argentina. He is very happy still and is really enjoying life as a missionary.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Letter #9

Hi Mom and Dad, and rest of the family.... and friends.... and others that i fail to mention....
Shayla is going to Germany!?!? Which part!? I am so jealous. when does she enter? Im glad that she is going to germany or else all that hard study time during german with me would not have payed off.  Yes, they did give me a Hep shot.... No need to worry mom. Im taken care of :).  Actually, My district presidency's second councilor's wife shared her testimony of how greatful she was to have her sons go on missions.  I shared my testimony previously about how i was greatful that my parents were always watching out for me and how my mom and dad would always say bye before I left for work or school in the morning.  she got up and said that she used to always worry about her kids hanging out with the wrong people, or where they were going, what they were up to.  Then she said that she had to drop her sons off at the MTC, and she said when she dropped them off, she had a great sense of relief.  She didn't have to worry about who they were with, where they were going, or what they were up to because the lord was with them.
That was one cool thingthat happened this week.
three cool things this week:
1. that testimony
2. I saw Danaya!! on the internet.... haha I guess she's some part-time actress in one of the Mormon Messages. Its on the youth website link for and she's in the one that bednar is speaking about technology. I saw it and i started freaking out! i was like, "I know that girl!!!" everyone around me starting givign me a weird look.... but i guess i should be used to those... so whatev
3. I read about christlike attributes this week. Then at the end of the chapter, it has a attribute quiz thing.... so i took it and found out that I am NOWHERE near christ. haha. for example, My patience is horrible.... But then it says to read about christ and read through pmg and the scriptures to find out how you can better yourself with the charachteristics that you are suffereing at. So i did just that. It will be a SLOW process... but I am excited to see how much more patient i have beomce in the next couple of weeks.
4..... I had a forth one... pre story: when Hermano Richards was dating his wife, he would always leave her little notes in her car, just saying random stuff about how much he loved her or how much he appreciated her. ok story: haha My teacher hermano richards made us teach our fellow missionaries as themselves. so we only have 7 people in our district. So i had the chance to teach him as himself.  So i started teaching him and i found out about some of his worries and some of his stresses in life. then I taught him about chrsit and some example from his life and then it somehow led to the restoration. It was a good lesson. but then, i had them impression to pull out one of my mini-notebooks and give it to him and tell him to write his wife some notes about how much he loved her and how much he appreciated her when he got home.  So..... Before this lesson, I was at the bookstore, thinking to myself, what do i need?? I didn't think of anything, so i was about to head out of the door of the bookstore when i got the strongest impression to go buy another mini note book. So i did just that. So..... A week after this lesson I followed up on his committments that he did, and he said that he did the note-giving one the night that he got that committment. He said that he left her a note on the table talking about how much he loved her and cared about her.  Then he said he received a text that night from his wife that said that she read the note and she was crying so much when she was reading it.
Yo se que el Espiritu trabaje in maneras differentas y maneras marivillosas. El espiritu puede nos conta hacer muchas cosas que no hacer sense... pero, si nosotros actuaramos de nuestros promptings, podemos ayudar personas in maneras differentes que no pensamos. El Espiritu Santo es muy fortaleza y muy consolando. Digo estas cosas en el nombre de Jesucristo amen.
Los Amo!!!
Ill talk to you guys in argentina next week!! :)

Letter #8

Guess what!?!?!?......................................(me giving you time to think)................................................................................................
I got my travel plans! I'm headed to Argentina! I leave November 3rd at 8 am! My flight leaves at 11:10 am (flight 1972) headed to Atlanta GA. I get there at about 4:50pm (GA time). My district Pres said that I can call you! So Mom, Thursday, Nov. 3, at about 2:30ish-3:30ish, stop your life completely and wait to answer your cell phone. You better Pick Up! The Pres said I can talk for as long as I want with you guys. . . And I have a 3 hour lay-over until I leave at 7:50pm from Atlanta, GA, on my 13 hour flight to Buenos Aires, Argentina on flight 101. So I need 2 things:
1. To get a call card from you guys.... The elders said you can get them at the store and they look like gift cards. I guess they pay by the minute or something. So just get one for as long as you want to talk to me! -up to 3 hours.
2. Promise you'll pick up!
Oh.... and a third to Dad: I won't get bald on my mission because of a promise I found in DC9:12-14. (: Yeah Buddy. And you have the same promise too!
Elder Gris
P.s. these flights are Delta.... so good seats!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Letter #7

Hello everyone!
Here are some things that have happened this week: Jose's baptism is on saturday, and Ellie is coming to it! Ellie wants to see how it is actually performed and now we can teach her more about it when we are done. Happy Late Birthday Cassie!! I will try to get you a nice mtc shirt,.... but there is a lot of choices. ill pick one that i think you'll like.
It's always nice to hear your sister enjoying seminary. Seminary was the biggest blessing in my high school life. I LOVED IT! cassie, you should tell all the teachers i say hello!
We've had a couple of things happen this week that were pretty funny.  During one lesson this week, I was trying to tell the story of Joseph Smith and how he wanted to know the truth, and so he studied it out in the Bible. But when I was supposed to tell him he read, "Santiago 1:5" (santiago is james in spanish), I told him to read James 1:5 (with the best spanish accent i could)..... yeah, he looked at me and said, "James?" hahah it was awesome.....
Another thing that happened was when we were talking with Ellie. She lives with her boyfriend and so we're trying to tell her that she needs to get married or sepereated to get baptized.  So she said that they have the certificate, they just need to get to the court.  So elder sands said, "Tocare Moses y usted ahora!" which means I will touch you and Moses Right Now! She then gave him the weirdest look and then started to laugh, while i was looking at him with a puzzled face.... then he realized his mistake and resaid his sentence. it was awesome!
elder Scott caem and talked to us this tuesday! It was awesome to hear from him. he spoke to us about the spirit and how to recognize it, use it, and live by it.  He also told us to keep a Elder _______'s Book of Revelation with us so whenver we have the spirit guide us, we can right down our inspirations so we don't forget. But REALLY COOL STORY! Elder Bate and I get to go together because elder sands and elder lindsley like to be in the choir. so we don't and so we just do a split.  so elder bate and i go to the devotional and we're sitting on probably the 8 or 9th row (behind the senior missionaries). then there were two seats that didn't fill up on the front row, right next to where the people who are speaking walk in. so i asked the usher if those seats were taken and he said that they weren't.......We sprinted as fast as we could to get to those seats! I think elder bate might have pushed a kid over (joke). but yes, there we were, on the front row, right next to where Elder Scott walked in.  and something else really cool.  After his talk, he beared his testimony and while he was bearing it, he stopped for about 10 seconds, looked down at me, and said, "I love you".... then he sat there for 10ish more seconds and continued bearing his testimony.
Im so excited for you tiff! I can't wait to hear the great experiences you have had in the temple!! Just remember that you can go more than once so dont kill your brain in there. haha :D
Yo se que los apostoles nos aman.  Yo se que guardan los mandamientos de Dios y que oran sobre los miembros todos los dias.  La iglesia de jesucristo de los santo de los ultimos dias es verdadera. Yo lo se. Jesucristo es nuestro salvador y nuestro hermano. nos ama muy mucho. sin la expiacion, no podemos volver con a Dios. Digo estas cosas en el nombre de Jesucristo amen. 
Elder Gris :)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Letter #6

Hola mi familia y mis amigos y algunas personas!
Como estan? como fue sus semanas?
The mtc isstillgood.(sorry, the space bar isn't working well) i see elder rasmussen a lot and i have only taken 3 pictures with himbecfause i never have my camera on me!! :P but yeah, i see him a lot and he tells me stories of what happened before he left. its always nice to see him here becuase it reminds me of how great of friends i've had and im so greatful for the influence they have had on me. I thought it was cool how my mom never cared which one of my freinds i was hanging out with because she trusted my friends so much.
Mom, its always nice to hear from the most important woman in my life. I wish i could get on the computer an hour before i usually do so i can instant message you. haha Your dear elder was amazing! it was so funny to hear the story of the party because i could picture your voice when you said, "sunday, wow....." haha then to hear about how dad is usually being dad, telling you the wrong dates and such, it made me laugh and then my district gave me a funny look and i had to explain 19 years of your relationship with wrong dates. haha it was awesome.  im glad the ward parties are still flowing and the ward is doing good. i wish i coul've came to the ward campout!! i was so excited to go to it but then they changed the date..... :P
Espanol is iendo poco a poco. aprendiamos sobre preterito y imperfecto y otros grammatica cosas. MUCHAS COSAS. pienso que mi cabeza iendo to explode!! pero, esta bien. TRC is one of my favorite times here at the MTc. TRC is when we get together with members and kinda give them a home teaching lesson to lighten up their lives. its fun because they are so amazingly quick at spanish and its humbling to see how much more i have to go... and i can look back to 5 weeks ago and see how far i ahve come.
So.... spiritual time, i guess.. haah. lately ive been reading with one of my investigators, jose. he wants to read the whole bom before he gets baptized next saturday. i was like, "sweet! sounds like a good idea." so we're in Jacob right now and I LOVE IT! I LOVE JACOB. i am so impressed at how humble his words are and how amazing his words are.  he reminds me of Elder holland and the style he has when he speaks. He speaks harshly, but is a nice way. i love it.  For example, in the beginning of Jacob 2 it says, " and ye yourselves know that i have hitherto been diligent in the office of my calling; but i this day am weighed down with much more desire and anxiety for the welfare of you souls than i have hitherto been.....; but behold, hearken ye unto me, and know that by the help of the allpowerful creator of heaven and earth i can tell you converning your thoughts, how that ye are beginning to labor in sin, which sin appeareth very abominable unto God. yea it grieveth my soul and causeth me to shrink with shame before the presence of my makedr, that i must testify unto you conecerning the wickedness of your hearts.".... such brutal honesty, i love it. it really reminds me of elder hollands talk during priesthood (if you haven't seen it yet, please watch it) when he says that he is sorry that he has to be so harsh but it is the only way to get it through our heads sometimes.  I love how jacob is so kind and caring and thoughtful about the women. somewhere (can't find it right now) he talks about how you need to be thoughtful and loving to the women in our lives. nevermind its at the end of Jacob 2
And then, just like elder holland always has, jacob gives a great one liner in jacob 6:12 "o be wise; what can i say more?"  I am s greatful that jacob was born in the wilderness, and never had the great prosperous life that his other borthers had in jerusalem.  because of this poverty, and watching his brothers, laman and lemuel, grow to be pride ful in their riches of the world, this is probably why he counsels so much about being wactful of your pride and putting the lord first. (jacob 2:18-19)
Estoy muy agredecido por las scrituras. yo se que estan aqui para nosotros y para nuestro benefit.  yo se que si lee en las scrituras diariamente, puede recibir muchas revaliciones de nuestro padre celestial.
other things: sister beck came to speak t us about the blessings of the temple!!! so good. and elder bate has put me on this new workout plan and i can already see my six pack coming in :) boom. so mom, i know how you feel. ahah i hate pushups. uh..... if you could send me some sandals that would be great!!
I hope everyone is doing well! I wish i could give you all an abrazo ahora! Se amo Muy Mucho!!
Nos Vemos,
Elder Gris

Thursday, October 6, 2011


These are pictures Collin sent us from the MTC. The captions below the pictures are what Collin had written on the back of the photo. 

Provo Temple

In front of the temple
Hey! Everybody! Come see how good I look! -Zane would understand

Elder Sands and I, First Day
We did this for funniness . . . We aren't gay, I swear.

Sam H. Smith statue

Relt wanted to try on the legendary boot

The tree smells like cream soda!

My study desk

Me and Elder Parker Dennis. Basically a BYU roomate
The Boot

Standard of Truth

I thought it was cool
Top: Me, Sands, Bowman, Potrie, Adair, Tourtallot, Bate, Lindsley  Bottom: Jaruis, Relt, Pickett    District 44A


Me, Sands, Relt re-enacting the T-shirts

I get special privileges because of my boot. 

Our Classroom

Elder Sands studying. . . me goofing off!
I was really hungry that day.

Letter #5

Mom!! ( and everyone else )
I can't believe you said i looked gay in that picture i sent you.... you know that the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, and since you married dad, he can't be gay, so therefore, i can't be gay either. and yes, i did know exactly what you would say about that picture ahah.
Im sorry to hear about your shoulder mom :(. ill keep you in my prayers like always, but thank you for letting me be aware of it.  I miss salsa... the salsa they have here is so gross.  and the beef that they have ehere isn't any better. (hopefully its amazing in argentina)
Wow.... one month gone already. i can't believe it. only 23 months left to go then ill be seeing you in the SLC airport remeniscing about the good times i had in argentina.  The main thing i've learned this month is that there is many miracles that can happen through being obedient. i am grateful that my district is so obedeient and wakes up on time. if it were up to me, as my mom knows, id sleep forever!!  i konw that obedience brings blessings, but that exact obedience brings miracles!!
I loved conference!  the way we did it is just like any devotional.  all the elders y hermanas pack into the gym and sit and listen for 2 hours. then we go to lunch, and come back for another 2 hours. then go to dinner, then go to priesthood in the gym while the hermanas go to the relief society session in a smaller room.
Its kinda cool to think that the next time ill be listening to the prophet of God is in Argentina!!!! :)
my thoughts about coneference:  How amazing is it that we get to hear the words of our prophets and apostles. we are so blessed.  My favorite talks were: Elder scott's about receiving revelation through the scriptures and how the scriptures can bless our lives. i also liked how he mentioned Cordoba.... i thought that was cool :)  I loved hearing about the new temples taht were going to be beuilt. PROVO!!! another temple in provo!! i can't believe it.  I also loved elder holland's talk on missionary work! i love how abrupt and straitforward he is.  sometimes it really is the only way to get it through our heads. and i also liked pres monson's talk about being morally clean. also i liked pres eyering's talk about us all "having the same charge". Sister dalton's talk was also inspiring and i can't wait to have a family of my own after my missiion.
We had chad lewis come give a devotional to us. it was really good!!  he said to let you light shine!! everyone has a light and everyone should share it.
other than that ive just been diong the same thing here at the mtc.
OH!! i saw elder rasmussen yesterday!! :) he looks good. haha im so glad that i have the influence of good friends who all want to serve missions. i miss being able to talk to them about anything i want and anything at all.
Our investigator jose really wanted to be baptised but he was afraid of what his father (Catholic Priest) and his family would think. his familiy is deep into the cahtolic religion and its more of a tradition now than a faith.  We shared with him the story of nephi and how he was scared to go and get the plates from laban.  we shared nephi 3:5-7 and told him that the lord would always give him a way and that he should not be afraid.  long story short he committed to baptism that lesson.  I hope this success continues when i got to argentina.
thank you so much for your letters of encouragement and your packages! the packages are delicious :) and my district thinks so too.
Only less than one month left until im at the airport calling home to say hi and that im about to leave! i can't wait to hear your voices. ( i think we get to call you )( and i think we get to call you from argentina.)
All is well here!
well im hungry and lunch starts in 6 minutes!! so Adios! Nos vemos!
yo se que mi salvador es Jesucristo. y yo se que puedo ser tambien el si yo suigo los mandamientos que Dios ha envio al la tierra!

Thursday, September 29, 2011


The alarm rings at 6:30; I stumble to my feet
I grab my companion's bedding and pull off his sheet.
A groan fills the room. It's already time to arise?"
It seems like just a second ago I was able to shut my eyes.

The morning activities follow: study, prayer and such
When its time to leave the apartment, you feel haven't accomplished much
"We have a super day planned," my Companion says with a grin.
I lowly utter a faithless breath, Yea, if anyone lets us in.

With the word of God and my faithful schwinn, we ride off in the street.
Prepared to face another day of humidity and heat
It's 9:30 in the evening, the day is almost through.
My companion and I are riding home, not accomplishing what we thought we'd do.

We ride up to the mail box hoping to receive a lot.
Only to look inside and hear my echo reverberate "AIRBOX"
We go up to our apartment; the day is now complete
the only thing to show for our work is a case of blistery feet

It's past 10:30 Pm, my companion is fast asleep.
Silence engulfs me all about and I begin to weep.
In the midst of sadness I kneel down to pray;
I need to talk to my Father, but I'm not sure what to say.

"Oh Father," I begin, "What happened to us today?
I thought we'd teach somebody, but everyone was away.
My hands, my aching hands worn, hurt and beat,
If our area was any smaller,we'd have knocked on every street.

Why on missions are the days so much alike?
The only difference about today was the flat tire on my bike.
Will you send some cooler weather? the heat is killing me!
I sweat so bad, it gets in my eyes. Its very hard to see.

Why do I have to wear a helmet, isn't your protection enough?
People always laugh at me and call me stupid stuff.
Please send us investigators so I may give them what they lack;
I want to give them Book Of Mormon, the weight of them hurts my back.

And what about my Family? They don't have much to say.
I'm sick of not hearing from home day after day.
Oh Father,why am I here, Am I just wasting my time?
Sometimes I just want to go home, I'm sorry but that's on my mind.

My Companion, Heavenly Father, who are you giving me?
The way he rides his bicycle I don't know if he can even see!
Now you have it, I can't go on. I DON'T KNOW what to do!
That, my Father in Heaven, is the prayer I leave you."

My prayer now finished I stand up, then jump right into bed.
I need my feet for tomorrow; we have another long day ahead
Sleep starts to overtake me, I seem to drift away.
Then it seems a vision takes me to another time in another day.

I'm standing alone on the hill, the view is very nice.
A man walks towards me and says, "My name is Jesus Christ."
Tears of joy well up inside, I fall down to His feet.
"Arise he states, follow me to the shade, you and I need to speak."

My attention towards my Savior, total and complete
He says, "Your Mission is similar of what happened to me.
I understand how you feel, I know what your going through;
In fact, it would be fair to say I've felt the same as you.

Even know how you felt when no one listened to you
At times I felt not quite sure what else that I could do.
I know you don't like to ride a bicycle, for a car would be sweet.
Just remember the donkey I rode I was not equipped with 21 speed.

I understand you don't like sweating, in fact it's something to hate.
I remember when I sweat blood from every pore, Oh, the agony was great.
I see you don't like your companion you would rather have someone else.
I once had a companion named Judas who sold my life for wealth.

It's hard to wear a helmet and have people make fun of you.
I remember when they put thorns in my head and called me King of the Jews.
So you feel burdened down by the weight of your pack.
I recall how heavy the cross was when they slammed it on my back.

Your hands hurt from tracking and knocking on doors all day
I guess when they pounded nails into mine, I ache in a similar way.
It's hard not to hear from home when your family was not there to see.
I lost communication on the cross and cried, "Father, why has though forsaken me?"

We have a lot in common, but there is a difference between us you see.
I endured to the end and finished my mission, so follow and do like me."
He embraced me with his arms, His light filled me with His love.
With tears in my eyes, I watched as he went back to the Father above.

I stood with awe and wonder when a beep rang in my head.
I listened and heard the alarm, when I realized I was in my bed.
My companion let's out a groan, "6:30 already, no way!"
I sat up and said. "Come on, I'll even carry your scriptures today!"

No matter what we go through when we feel we can't take more,
Just stop and think about Jesus Christ, He's been there before

By Troy Whittle

Letter #4

Hello family! / Creepy stalkers on the blog... haha jk
Que pasa? Nothing is going on here, just the usual.
We did get to hear from Elder Allen. he is the big head honcho in charge of the mission funds or something like that. he was really funny and talked about our desire to serve missions. one thing he said that i really liked was, "Get lost in your mission, for it is the best place to be lost, and the only place to truly find yourself." he also said, "let your mission go through you, dont let you go through your mission."
we also heard from elder clarke who talked about our desire to serve missions as well. there were a lot of things i liked about his talk. he said that we should never take our name tag for granted adn taht we should be proud to wear the name elder. because there are only a few amount of people IN THE WORLD who get to wear it. included among these people are prophets, apostles, and us missionaries.  he also talked about our missions that we will be serving when we leave the mtc.  he read a story that touched my heart and it was something like this:  there was a missionary where i was serving who came into my office after 2 days of getting to Chile. i asked him why he needed to see me and he said that he wanted to go home. "I hate the climate, i hate my companion, i hate my bed, and i hate the food. i want to go home." i pleaded with him to stay for a month. he said, "i'll give you 2 weeks." after those two weeks he came back to my office wanting to see me urgently. he came in and i asked how his two weeks went. this is what he said, "I can't stand having my shirt stick to my back because of how much im sweating, the climate is terrible. I cant stand my companion. I can't stand having to sleep in the dirt covered bed that they give me. I can't stand the beans, rice, tortillas, and sauces that they feed me..... but i met this family, who has less than what i have, who doesn't have very many clothes, whose bed is the dirt, and who barely has enough to eat.  then we taught them about the companion that we all have, Jesus Christ, and the love he has for all of us.  President, after these two weeks, this family is the reason that i want to stay."  that story touched me so deeply, and even remembering it now i can feel the spirit and im starting to tear up.  I know it will be hard to adjust to argentina, but i know it will be easy to find people who are looking for the companionship of Christ.  He is my favorite companion that i have had so far in my mission and i know that he lives.  I can't wait to see him again, when i can kneel down and kiss his feet for all that he has done for the world.
That story reminds me of a poem that Elder Ireland's uncle wrote. I think i posted it on facebook under my "notes" section. if someone wants to print that poem off and send it to me that would be great. :) and also my farewell talk too. i want to get that story of the index cards.  and any other inspirational stories, quotes, pictures etc. please send them my way!
The MTC is an amazing place. i love it so much. i can't wait to hear about all the wonderful experiences that my friends will have here. congrats to zack for his call! and ill be seeing elder rasmussen soon! i can't wait to hear where elder Downey, Bruin, Holmstead, and sister Holmstead head off to.
A mission is the best choice i have ever made in my life. even though it has only been 4 weeks (who's counting) i know that i am quickly turning from a boy into a man. i have loved every minute of it.
Im sorry to hear that Utah crushed the Cougars...................................... NOT!!!! take it dad :) the cougs finally got what they deserved haha. but i hope byu finds their rhythym because they need it ;).
Tell the ward that i have them in my prayers and that today's trials, become tomorrow's testimonies. stay strong, and love every minute that you have the gospel, becuase there are many others who would take your place in an instant. consider yourself blessed that you have heard the gospel in this life. i know i am.
Thank you mom for being such a great example to me. i love you SOOOOOOOOOOO much. i want to relate myself to a stripling warrior, who was taught the knowledge of the gospel by their mothers. i am so strong in the gospel because of my family. I love the examples that everyone has set for me.
things i need from everyone:
Things i need from home:
some bathing shoes.... (flip flops, sandals... whatever) the bathroom floors are kinda sick. haha
por favor, recordar todos las cosas eso Dio ha bendicido ustedes con. ustedes estan bendicido muy mucho! ( sorry for the poor spanish, im kinda out of it right now. the smell of bleach is putting me into another world.... haha )
"Adios! Nos Vemos!" -Hermana Andrade
"Abrazo"-Elder Morin
Te Amo,
Elder Gris