Thursday, February 27, 2014

Hi Everybody!

Hey guys!!!
       Ok I will write Tayler so sorry if this email is a little short but this week has been great! We have been having lessons mostly with inactives but it’s been good. I still don’t understand a lot of stuff I only understand a lot of Spanish when we are talking about doctrine.
  Oh and dad I forgot to tell you I’ve read all the gospel books that I had. They are really interesting I actually read all of them like a month ago haha. Every time I watch the Joseph Smith movie I seriously get teary eyed. He has done more for this world than any other man next to Jesus Christ.
    I’m having fun with my companion we are working hard and enjoying serving the members. I got a haircut today and the guy totally messed it up and so the other guy there fixed it. He is an inactive but he’s a super cool guy. They also are all about the hairlines and using razors on your neck and stuff my hair actually looks really good ha-ha. Oh so on Sunday there was this white guy from Samana the place that I went to a couple of weeks ago and he has a zip lining company over there and so my comp asked president if we could go and he said yes!!!! Our president is so cool he lets us go paintballing ha-ha. I’m going to record a video of me going down the zip line and I’ll send it to you guys I’m so excited ha-ha.
     Oh and yes mom my memory card still works don’t worry I will make sure to get pics with elder Morgan elder Henriquez and elder Jensen so yeah no worries. Oh mason is painting me something for my bday and I told him to talk to you about shipping it with whatever you are going to send me for my bday so yeah. Preston emailed me and said he decided to serve a mission and I’m so glad he’s going! I knew he would he is going to be awesome!
    I have some sad news one of the missionaries in my group at the MTC went home his name was Elder Virgin he was my really good friend in the MTC. He went home for personal reasons and things going on with his family but he’s going to talk to his bishop and is going to come back as soon as possible. So yeah anyways email me back so I can talk with you guys!
Love you guys!

-Elder Tanner Gothard

Saturday, February 22, 2014

Feb 20th - Email

Hey Guys!!!! first off that is amazing that dad got that big of a raise just wow that is just wow amazing I read that and I was like noooo way haha. I was so happy about that what a blessing!

 To help you with your talk mom for Sunday emphasize the importance of doing family history because if you think about it there are so many of your family members that are just waiting to receive those blessings and to receive those covenants and their work isn’t going to be done on their own and those people are in heaven and have been waiting forever for their work to be done and personally for me since I went through the temple 6 times in the MTC I felt the spirit so strong knowing that these people have just been waiting to have their work done and they are sooo thankful for your service and you being worthy to go through the temple. Sooo I hoped that help.

Wait so the churches are still in Arizona I thought they moved to Texas... it’s weird to think their brother gets off his mission in like 3 months how exciting!!! IM glad everybody is doing good though I think I might fast tomorrow just to show heavenly father how thankful I am for everything he has done for our family I think you guys should to but that’s just me ha-ha. Any ways this week has been good for the most part. So one of the members in the ward knew I played guitar and so he just gave me his acoustic guitar!! I was sooo happpy like you have no idea it’s just nice to be able to play it at night after a long day and just clear my head.

Another weird thing that happened was when elder Morgan and I were at the church there were these two dogs and a chicken and the two dogs were chasing at it then the dog grabbed it by its neck and just it was crazy lol. As far as the work here like we’ve been busy but it’s been slow like we just don’t have any investigators right now and we are mostly teaching less actives. Ohhh yeah today is my 3 month mark in the mission isn’t that crazy and when I get to talk to you guys on mother’s day it will be 6 months’ time is truly going by fast for me...well maybe not for you guys lol.

Also a lot of people are saying that my Spanish is really improving and I actually can talk with the Hispanic missionaries ha-ha it’s kind of fun makes me feel really good when I can speak the language. As of right now I’m hoping to finish the book of Mormon within a month and I started reading it since December so yeah I really love the scriptures now,  just AHHH they are so amazing! I’m almost done with Alma so I’m getting to all the wars and battles its getting super interesting. Well that’s pretty much what I’ve been thinking about and what’s happened these last couple of weeks. Ohh mom we have something like a washer and it works pretty good but we have to hang our clothes up on a line so yeah and the food is getting better I’ve been cooking myself cheese burgers, tacos, sausages, oatmeal, eggs and yeah anyways love you guys I wish I could talk to you guys more I miss you guys sooo much love you guys!!!

-Elder Tanner Gothard

Saturday, February 15, 2014

Feb 12th - Good & Bad Week

    Hey guys!!!! I really want to talk to you just because this week has been just all over the place. So lately I have been a little down and upset about the language and the lack of progression in our area. We are all working hard but it is frustrating. Then the other day something told me to read those letters you guys gave me. I read Tayler’s first and I started tearing up then I read Trinity’s and it keep coming and then I read yours mom and that was it, I had tears going down my face and the part that stuck with me at that moment was pray to heavenly father. So I did and after that I felt soooo much better I just felt at peace and it just motivated me to work harder. Soo for the past couple days I’ve been working harder and I’ve been getting out of my shell and saying more and sharing some of my fav scriptures. I’ve been getting more confident lately. I don’t know I’m doing everything I’m supposed to do I wake up at 6:30, work out, do scripture study etc.. Lol.

   Ohhhh so my camera is broke but the card works and I got a new camera friggen 200 dollars later but it’s a good camera so yeah. Tell Tayler to continue working hard and pray for heavenly father’s guidance with work and her life in general.  Thank you for texting Aiden by the way he said his computer broke so I haven’t heard much from him lately. Oh I have pictures of our house mom I just keep forgetting to send them to you so sorry I’ll do it next week. Did you guys get a chance to look up that hotel in D.R. yet? Anyways if you are home right now write me back if you can so I can talk to you before I have to leave. Love you guys I also got the pics of Tatum and her drawings lol. I miss her soo much you have no idea and of course I miss trinity & Tayler!

Sorry it’s a short email this week
> --Love you guys!
> -Elder Tanner Gothard

Some Silly pics from MTC & P-day!

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Some pic's from P-day - Feb 5th 2014

Looks rough!

Heyyyyy!!! - January 29th

Oh my gosh I feel like I haven’t talked to you guys in forever holy cow!!! Anyways loved all the pics of Tatum we were at a members house and they have a little kid like 3 years old and it made me realize that when I left it was the last time I would Tatum as a baby it was so sad to think about.
So last week me and my companion went to the office cause he had to help another missionary and they showed us the dates of when all the missionaries are going home I go home November 5th 2015. They cut like two weeks off my mission I know that’s a long time away thought I would let you know. The only reason they did that because that’s when the transfer date is sooo yeah. IM sorry you guys have had the flu that stinks!!! If it helps I had diariahha yesterday sooo yeah lol. Sorry that’s probably gross and I wish at.
I don’t know why but I have been thinking a lot about home lately and maybe it’s because that’s just me being homesick a little bit but I’m doing super great though so don’t worry about me. We got to go to Mattensitas... I think that’s how u spell it. It was friggen sweet! The beach is so beautiful I get to see it like every day but that beach looks better the one where we are at has trash all over it but I don’t care because it’s a beach lol. Oh so the church we have was built in the 90s. It doesn’t even look like a church really there is a barbed wire fence all around it. It’s funny because every time we unlock the gate I’m not kidding in like 5 minutes all these kids start playing in the parking lot and we have to tell them they have to leave. There are three Americans in the house and one from the DR.
By the way I didn’t buy a guitar I don’t think I’m going to sooo yeah. Anyways hope you guys are doing well. This week has been rough but we have a baptismal date with Juan. It’s in the end of February. Oh something really cool so yesterday during personal study I was thinking about what we should focus on for Juan from the plan of salvation and as I was looking in preach my gospel I saw the atonement and I just kept feeling like we needed to focus on that and share alma 34 v 8 to 10. I told my comp and he said ok let’s do it. So while we were teaching him I guess he had a question about it after the fall of Adam because he had a question about it. Anyway after we were done with the lesson my comp was like dude!! that was a really good lesson and that scripture that you wanted to use and what we needed to talk about was perfect. I was sooo happy you have no idea I know that was the Holy Ghost telling me that’s what we needed to teach him. I don’t know it was just awesome. That was the best thing that happened this week. The other day we had a service project to help this lady clean out her salon by spraying it with water and scrubbing the walls and stuff. It was so much fun! We were having a water war and stuff it was hilarious.
One of the missionaries in our house is elder Morgan. He’s super cool me and him are like best friends it’s awesome. Anyway I just wanted to end by saying how thankful for everything that you guys have done for me by the way mom when I was in the MTC they asked who do you think is one of the hardest working people and I said my mom and I was kind of getting a little emotional ha-ha I’m such a baby and dad you are too lol. Sorry for all the times I would argue with you guys you guys are awesome love you both to death I think about you guys every day. Love you guys. I'm super excited that Star Wars comes out after I get back that’s going to be awesome. Ahhhh I miss the Walking Dead soo much lol and music especially music but I’m loving church music I actually sing it a lot. Love you guys I will leave you with one of my fav scriptures lately it’s in Matthew 6 v 33 look it up and apply it to your life it’s a great scripture love you guys!!!!!

-Elder Tanner Gothard

Me at the beach - Nagua

January 23rd Nagua 3rd week - I'm alive and well ha-ha

Sorry I didn’t get to email yesterday the power always goes out on Wednesdays so if I don’t email you that’s why so sorry about that. For mom the weather is super-hot it feels just like Arizona during the summer so yeah. When I first got here it rained like crazy but it hasn’t rained for a while. I haven’t even used my rain jacket because once it stops raining it just gets super-hot and humid because it just rained. and I don’t know why the guy at the ctr store said I was going to walk in mud and stuff all the time yeah right. I walk on streets and sidewalks all the time lol. 
My companion and I have had a rough week just because we are opening up a new area and so we are figuring things out and the ward we have honestly should be a branch there’s barely 50 people that show up if that. Our ward is kind of frustrating because they just don’t seem very excited about the missionary work at all and we are not allowed to really contact unless prompted by the spirit so yeah we mostly have to get referrals and yeah it’s hard.
 We actually are seeing progress now which is good and I’m excited. I’ll probably be in this area for at least 18 weeks I’m thinking or more I’m not entirely sure. Also so every 6 weeks there are transfers but that doesn’t mean every missionary gets transferred. Since my companion leaves in 8 weeks I’ll get a new companion. Anyways there a couple of people we are teaching that seem really interested which is super sweet I’m excited. Most of the missionary work here is trying to keep the new members active and getting less actives to church and trying to make sure the ward doesn’t kill each other ha-ha. Like there’s 50 members who go every week roughly and 300 people on the roster soooo yeah.
Anyways one of the investigators is super interested in the book of Mormon. His name is Juan. He used to be catholic but didn’t like how the leaders would day one thing and then go against it so he left. The awesome thing is everything we have been teaching him he understands and he believes and it’s awesome. I get to ask him if he wants to be baptized in Spanish today I’m so nervous lol. Another set of people we are teaching is this girl my age and her friend who’s a guy named Joel. She’s catholic but she’s not and he is part of this other church that I forgot what it called. But they weren’t that interested at first and we taught them yesterday for the first time and they were asking us all these questions and stuff and I actually understood what was going on during the whole discussion so I was happy about that. Now they seem super interested and we gave them Book of Mormons and I noticed the girl was looking at the pictures and she stopped on the page with Moroni burying the plates so I’m super stoked.       
We were talking to some guys on the street the other day and more of them came to talk to us and I guess we are teaching a class today somewhat. We have to just tell them that our message is centered on Christ and teach them individually ha-ha. This one guy we taught named Franie has a super sad story. So he got in a motorcycle accident with his friend and his friend died and he’s still trying to learn to walk. He had pictures of her on his phone when she just died. It did not look pretty it was just really sad and the thing that stinks is he doesn’t remember the accident so he said he prays to god every night wanting to know if it was his fault or the other driver it’s just really sad. Then his son has a disease where can’t walk and the doctors say he only has until he’s 15 to live and he’s 12 right now it’s just really sad. Those are all the people we are teaching right now. and then a couple days ago I just got really frustrated because we were teaching a member and her children but her children are inactive but I just could not speak Spanish at all and I was just super frustrated and then the kid said he doesn’t want to go to seminary so I finally got some courage to ask him if he knew that the book of Mormon was true if he has prayed about it. He said he has and I shared with him why I thought seminary was important to me and that’s how I found out the book of Mormon was true.
Then that same night I was still kind of frustrated about the language and my companion and I were waiting at the church to do a meeting and we were outside and it was dark. And as I was looking at the stars in the sky and just thinking I thought to myself that there is truly a god because I know that not all of this could’ve have just happened for no reason and then I felt better. So yeah still working hard and I love you guys and you guys are the best family I could’ve asked for. So yeah ha-ha. By the way I haven’t bought a guitar yet I’m still thinking about it and don’t worry dad I would only play it on p-days or at night after we are done with everything lol. Love you guys let me know how things are going I miss all of you guys Love you guys

-Elder Tanner Gothard