Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Week 3/Mon 9/24/2012 10:33 AM

I really cant believe how fast time is going by here! It really is hard to believe that I have already been in mexico for 3 weeks now, it seriously feels like I have only been here for a week, at most! Thank you all for you emails, and grandma, yes, i do get your emails, and i got your dearelder letter, thank you so much! I love you!

It is so good to hear that everthing is going pretty good at home, however, i am sorry tanner for larry, he was a good geko, you could maybe have the slug that we found in our sink this morning hahahaha. Anywho, life has been going really good here! Like i said, time has been flying by just because we are working all day everyday! So a typical sunday, we have church from 10 to 1, but we get there at 9 so we can go pick up investigadors for church, and then right after is usually when we have our baptisms, usually. During the week, on p day we wake up at 530 every week just because everything that we want to do is so far away from us that we have to wake up that early to be able to have time to write our families and what not. We get back to work at 6 on p days. During the week, we have our zone meetings on tuesday, and that takes up half the day as well. The other days we start preaching at 1030 11ish and usually dont get back home until aroun 930 or 10 some nights just because we are always soooo busy, we normally teach about 7 to 10 lessons a day, and contact around 20 people, so there is a ton of work to do here!

So this week was an interesting one. Saturday we had one of our families get marrried (the second picture) so that they could get baptized. Interesting fact about mexico real quick, no one really believes in getting married, so right now we are working with 3 other families to get married so they can get baptized. Anywho, since this family got married, they had all of their family there. Well, long story short, they wanted to postpone their baptism till next week. So then we had 4 who were going to get baptized. Well with the other family, she didnt want to get baptized (the mom) because of certain monthly problems, and so we have to postpone her baptism along with her two kids. So we were down to only one baptism. So we went to go pick her up, btw her name is maria, before church so she could get baptized, and low and behold she wasnt there. We went back to her house after sacrament meeting and she still wasnt there, so we were kinda bummed. But, during church the bishop was talking to a member who has brought her mom a couple times to church and she said that she wanted a blessing and to get baptized, so of course right after church we went to their house! This lady, marinela, had been abused by her kids ever since she got really old and stopped working, and she got super sick, so that is why she wanted a blessing. Let me tell you, anoiting oil in spanish is not as easy as it seems haha. But, it was definitely a spiritual experience for me having to rely on my companion and the spirit to help me out with what words to say, and luckily my companion sealed it and gave the blessing so i didnt have to, but i definitely have some work to do in that area. Anyways, since we were there, we taught her about baptism, and she was so receptive and wanted to get baptized last night! Miracle i know! Anywho, for her to be baptized, we had to have our district leader interview her, and luckily they didn't have any lessons planned, so they were able to come that day so she could be baptized. So during the interview, we went on changes to go see if this maria was home and to see if she wanted to still get baptized. Luckily she was there! Even though it was me and our district leaders companion, who got here the same day i did, and we didnt really understand all of what she said, we were able to convice her that it was the best day for her to do it. Meanwhile, while we are walking back to the chapel with maria, my companion and district leader are still in the interview with marinela. Well as you know, we need to priesthood holders for witnesses, and we only had one. So on our way, I call the bishop, but just our luck, he was in DF (district federal) and couldn't go. So as I hung up i said a little prayer to help us out. Right as i finished, we randomly ran into the primary president and her husband, who has the priesthood! So with broken spanish we asked if they could help, and they were glad to come (Take note this is at like 8 at night by now). So we get to the chapel, changed, took pictures and everything, got in the baptismal font, talked her through everything, but right as i was about to start the prayer, maria gets super scared of going under the water and basically runs out of the font.......Talk about luck. Satan really does work hard all the way. But, i had a thought to call my companion to see if they were going to bring marinela before I got out of the font and changed, and luckily they were only another 5 minutes away. So i just stayed in the font (that is why we didnt get pictures this week of us in our whites) until they got there, had another small welcoming/talk thing, and then got her baptized. Marinela (the little old lady in the picture) was seriously a miracle baptism. Everything that happened with her should have just gone wrong, but God made it possible without a hitch, as always. I hope that next week maria will be able to get over her fears of the water, and I also hope that next week we will have the other 6 along with another family we found yesterday who is a part member family will be baptized next week. The work here is seriously on fire!!.

Real quick, answers: Our city where we live is a mix a both rural and urban, most of the shops are just houses combined with the stores, but everyone sells something, and most of the people sell the same thing, it really is no wonder how everyone is so poor here because everyone does the same thing.

However, all of the outlining cities are very countryish, very very old fashioned.

For our grocerys we go to a bodega, which is owned by walmart, so they have coco puffs :) we cook about once a day, sometimes twice, but we sometimes dont really eat dinner because the members feed us so well for lunch.

And no i dont know what the name of the falls are, sorry :/

Love you mom!!

Elder Noel

Monday, September 17, 2012

Semana Dos!!/Monday, September 17, 2012 2:46 PM

Hola mi amados!! Muchisimos gracias por sus emails! :)

So first to reply to the emails a little bit, Dad it is actually really funny that you sold you truck, cause I was talking with my companion about it and said to him that since you got rid of the burb, that you were going to sell your truck and get a lexus...and well, guess what happens haha i just laughed when i read that part! It is also good to hear that things are going pretty well for tanner and his football, that is totally awesome that he is getting some good playing time in, hopefully he will get more and more and maybe even play on jv next year. Brookie, just keep in mind that EVERYTHING happens for a reason, my mission has made me realize that more and more. Even though I don´t know what everyone is saying here, they make me feel like this is my home, and I wouldnt be here if i would have left earlier, and so many other blessings wouldnt have happened if i didnt leave when i did, so keep your eyes open for the opportunities that God has instore for you, or you might miss them.

So this week has been yet again on fire!! We broke my companions former record for lessons, a total of 44 lessons for this week. Ya, we were teaching like nuts. It is interesting to see those who are humble and those who think they know everything. Also, it is interesting to see how in the Book of Mormon it says that people in the last days will say that bad doesnt exist, that there is no sin. Well, we met a guy who thought that yesterday, and talked with him after church for around an hour teaching him how everything has an opposite, that there could be no good without bad, and it was interesting to see when he knew what we were teaching was right, but still wouldnt admit it,  he just left, which was sad in a way actually. Anywho, that happens a lot, when we teach someone who is very stubborn in their ways, and even when they know the gospel is right, and they know they need to get baptized, they wont change for the life of them. But when we find someone who is willing, that is the best feeling in the world. We found this one huge family last week who are all so close to being baptized. The father of the family got baptized a couple months ago, and that is how we found them. He has like 5 kids, and all of them have a family of their own. We have been focusing on one of them more however, Ruben. He is a carpenter, and has a "wife" and 4 kids, 2 of which can be baptized. i say "wife" because here no one is really married, that is our biggest problem here. Like we are waiting now on three different couples to get married first before they can get baptized. It doesnt really make sense to me how they can have kids and still not be married, but this Ruben and his soon to be wife have always really wanted to get married, so when we told them that if they do they can be baptized and then in a year be sealed as a family for all eternity, you could just see pure joy enter into his eyes!! he can speak a little english, so he said, yes i want to be together forever. He was just so happy to hear that he could be with his family, together, for ever, that is what this work is really about, is bringing families together, and baptism is just the first step. 

So the 2 baptisms that we had this week were tonya and guadalupe, and boy were they tuff ones. Even though i couldnt understand them very well,  the spirit was super strong, and they finally realized that they needed to be baptized. The water was super cold because the water heater ran out of gas without us knowing it, so they didnt like that very much, but i think it was still a good experience for them.

Some fun stuff, last week we went to some waterfalls for pday and it was so awesome! This week as a zone we got jersys  and had an awesome game of soccer, mexicanos vs. americanos, and who would have thought that the americans, which only 2 of us had played since we were 10, would be the mexicans 5 to 2 haha :) 

k answers: My area is Santiago Tianguistenco (which litterally translated means smelly market)

cities near : metapec, kinda, it is like an hour away

The food is sooo amazing!! The members here feed us so well, it is kinda difficult for me to finish it all, but it is getting easier and easier, but it really isnt that spicy, only if you want it to be, and i like to taste my food haha.

We actually have one of the nicest homes in the entire mission, so we have a laundry machine that we can do laundry with, so that is kinda nice. 

We only have one ward in our area actually, there are a lot of inactives, but soooo much work to do, like we have 6 baptisms planned for next week if all goes well.

Love you all, thank you for the support and love!!



Elder Noel

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Mexico, week 1/Sept 3-10, 2012

Mon 9/10/2012 10:49 AM

Hola mi famila!! Thank you everyone for sending me emails and what not, I really love hearing from everyone!! The only thing is that I can only send 1 email a week here, but, I still would love to get emails from everyone so I can write you all back! The work here is seriously on fire, probably has something to do with our mission being the most baptizing mission in the world, last month there were over 400 baptisms in our mission alone, and this next month our goal is 500! Right when we got to the mission home, President said that it is a rule of diligence (there are rules of obedience, diligence, and desire, it is a really cool system) is to have a baptism per companionship per semana (week), and well, my companion and I are already way ahead of the schedual, but more of that later!

So first, I apologize for my spelling and what not, I have to use a spanish key board and it is a little weird at the moment. Anywho, so the flight to mexico went totally fine, really no problems at all. So when dad asked me if I had placed a book of mormon yet it really got me thinking. So when we got to mexico there were these two american teenagers that were going to Chile for ´´retirement´´ because his mom gave him 50,000 bucks for college but instead is going to live in chile with his cousin (a little crazy i know), and neither of them know a lick of spanish haha. Anyway, while we were waiting in line for custums in the mexican airport, me and a couple other missionaries got talkin with them about religion, and someone asked them if they had something to read in chile (since they had mentioned that they just wanted to live in the jungle and read, Im pretty sure they might have been crackheads haha) anyways, they said no, so i pulled out one of my extra BOM´s and said something to the effect of if you really want to know more about what we believe, here is a book that has no flaws and has the true doctrine of Christ, he seemed pretty interested because as soon as we left I saw him open it up and start to read Boo ya!

When we got to the mission home, it was already pretty late so we just had dinner at the mission home and slept there. They really dont believe in carpet here at is kinda sad haha. anyways, they next day we had a mini devotional and then headed up to the mission office. Thet me tell you something, they said they walk with a purpose here, it is more like take a slight jog with a purpose! I have really never seen someone walk as fast as the a.p.s haha but when we finally did make it to the office, we had a quick interview witht the president and then got assigned to our companions (that is right when I called you and we had to leave quick so we could get to work). So my companion is elder bryce lefevre, he is from las vegas (so he is an american) and he has been here in mexico for only 4 months, but he also served in texas waiting for his visa for a month, but he speaks waaayy good spanish! we are already such good friends! we have a lot of the same characteristics, and we seriously have such a good time all of the time!! He is such a nice missionary, super spiritual, and I dont know if anyone knows the bible better than him.

So onto the work! It really is super crazy here! the ´´floor´´ of excellence, not the bar of excellence is 140 contacts a week, 10 new invesitgators a week, 4 people with a baptism date, 6 people at church, 30 lessons a week, and 1 baptism, and boy is it hard work!  We the only one that we havent gotten is the contacts (only 100), but we have about 10 lessons a day, 4 new investigators a day, so we are aƧALWAYS teaching, it really is crazy! The way the lessons go are kinda different than in the mtc, cause we teach the third lesson, the doctrine of christ, a lot more than anything else, like so far we have only taught the restoration once. but it is because that is the common ground that we have with all the people here, because seriously everyone is catholic, it is nice sometimes because a lot of them arent devote catholics, but it is frustrating when you get someone who is just so stuck in their ways, like when this one guy said that he believes what we taught him is true, but there is no way he is every going to change. It really is quite sad.

So some really special families that we have been teaching, and ill end with the ones who got baptized. So my first family, one that we found one of my first days here, is the family of this mother by the name of Miriam. I cant really understand most of what people say what they do for work and what not, so i dont really know much backround about a lot of people, but i have been learning like nuts so i can know more about the people i am teaching. anyway, i really felt like we were directed to teach this family. she has a 12, 8, 7, 5 and 3 year old, and everytime we walk up this MASSIVE hill to get to their house, they all run down to say hi to us and try to race us back up, it really is so awesome! anyway, our first lesson with them was just soooo awesome, and we invited them to get baptized and they all said yes! our second lesson with them we taught the restoration, and when i gave the first vision, the spirit was just so strong, and you could see the spirit in her eyes, and you could just see a change in the whole family. That really is the most amazing feeling!! The next lesson they brought up that they didnt ´´baptize´´ some of their kids becasue they didnt have a lot of money and they didnt like how you have to pay for a catholic baptism, which was perfect! so we taught the law of tithing and you could tell that it was the answer that miriam and her mother were looking for a long time because they were just so happy and a weight was lifted from them!! soooo awesome!!

Ok now to the big news of the week! so yesterday (sunday) we had a total of 2 confirmations and 3 baptisms!! It was such an amazing day! one of the confirmations is part of the family that got baptized as well, but she had gotten baptized a couple weeks ago and was what started the process for the rest of the family. It was so cool to be able to stand in on my first confrimations, even though i didnt really know what was being said haha. So the baptisms were so amazing! I got to baptize the mother Irma and her second oldest evelin. I was really worried about messing up their names all day (because here in mexico everyone has like 4 or 5 names in their full name), but as soon as I stepped in the water with them a peace came over me (obviously the spirit) and I was able to say the baptismal prayer (in spanish mind you) without any problems, and the words just flowed!! When each one came out of the water, you really could see a change in them, and they were sooooo happy!! i will never forget their faces and smiles, they were just so filled with the spirit and soo happy!! This is what makes the mission a privilage, not a sacrafice. I love this work so much, and I love the people here already!! 

So i dont have much more time, but here is my mission address so people can write me letters :) (if you could put this on fb that would be great)

Elder Chase Noel
Mexico, Mexico City West Mission
Sierra de Las Vertientes #310
Col. Lomas de Chapultepec
Del. Miguel Hildalgo
11010 Mexico, Distrito Federal, MEXICO

I am going to try to write letters as much as I can.

Again, I love you all so much and thank you all for your support and prayers! Remeber, I love to get emails from all of you, and escpecially hadn written letters! Love you


Love, Elder Noel

Monday, September 3, 2012

We had an amazing talk with Chase today!  He called during his layover at the LAX airport.  Thank you to the good elder that let him borrow his togo phone!  He had waited almost an hour to call from a payphone and time was running short.

He sounded amazing!  He had a great peace about him and was very excited to be on his way to Mexico.  There were 15 elders that were traveling together.  I bet that was quite a sight to see :)

We are so grateful as a family and as his parents for his willing to serve a mission.  A great change has come over him and my heart swells with love and gratitude to a Heavenly Father who knows and loves each of us individually.  I know Chase will be watched over and protected and led to those who are searching for something more to complete their lives.  I am grateful Chase has the opportunity to teach the great people of Mexico, the wonderful people spoken of in the scriptures.

Thank you again to everyone for your love and support of him and our family.

Here is the Mission Home address where you can send letters.

Elder Chase Clark Noel
Mexico, Mexico City West Mission
Sierra de Las Vertientes #310
Col. Lomas de Chapultepec
Del. Miguel Hildalgo
11010 Mexico, Distrito Federal, MEXICO

You can also send a pouch letter through
Just select the Mexico, Mexico City West Mission and then select write a letter.

You can also email him at

He can only write letters, but has promised to do so to those who write him.  I know he would love to hear from you!

Wed 8/29/2012 9:23 AM


So first off, my travel plans changed like 2 days ago, if not yesterday, I can't remember, time here is basically non-existant. Anywho, our plane leaves from SLC now at 8:40 am, so I wont be calling before I leave because we now have a layover in LAX for a couple hours. We will arrive in Cali at 9:39 am, and then our plane doesn't leave until 1:30 pm, and then we will arrive in MEXICO at 7:10! I am sooooo stoked!!!! Like you have no idea!! So I would be expecting a call from me ( I will probably just call mom's cell unless you tell me other wise) around 1030ish, I expect that is when I will finially be able to call. Well, on to how this week went. 

This weeks seriously flew by way too fast. I can't believe that in a week from now I am going to be in Mexico.....and I'm not freaked out yet haha. I have been prepared so well not only by everyone at home, namely Mom, dad, and grandparents, but also here by my teachers. Even though we have kinda been the "foster" district because we were handed around to different teachers for different circumstances more times than I can count, I was able to learn lessons from all of them. Something cool that happened last week was we got our pretty much favorite teacher back from her honeymoon. She really did bring our district so much closer, taught us so much, and really had a profound impact on how I not only view others but how I view myself. 

So there were two really cool talks this week, one an older one from Elder Oaks and one on tuesday by Anthony Perkins of the Seventy. Elder Oaks talked about three things challenges that we have in life; 1 Change our actions (aka repentance), 2 achieve, 3 become. What got me the most was the become part. He said to become something we must have something happen within us (kinda sounds like a "mighty change of heart" huh?) He said to accomplish all three of these things, we need to have desire. Our desire shapes our thoughts, are thoughts shape our actions, and our actions shape our character. How we can obtain righteous desires is found in the story of Lamoni, in Alma 22:16 (I'll let you search the scriptures and listen for what the spirit tells you what you need to do to have righteous desires ;)) 

The other talk was about the steps of devoloping faith/steps of faith, 1 Belief, 2 Action, 3 witness, and 4 power. Again, what I loved is the last part. To have power through faith, we must not have ANY doubts!!! The key to not having any doubts is to stay positive 100% of the time. I feel like I have really understood the importance of being positive here. The first week I was called district leader was the worst week for me here because I was so caught up in the worries of what other people were doing, not how they were doing, I forgot to stay positive my self. I usually didn't have a problem with staying positive at home, but I have really noticed how important it is to stay positive here on the misison, people really can tell if you are happy or not, plus, I'm sharing a message of happiness, how could I not be happy now?!? :D 

I love this work more than anything else I can remember in my life. I look forward waking up everyday now to go read my scriptures, trying to learn something that can help someone else in my life, and just plain out be with these amazing elders in my district. I am so excited to finally put all of this work into action every second of every day in Mexico, thank you all for what you hve done and for supporting me!! LOVE You!! 


Elder Noel

Wed 8/22/2012 9:40 AM

Hola mi familia!! :)

Mucho gracias por sus letras y sus palabras de consuelo!! It has defnintely been another amazing week here at the MTC! I am really learning a lot of lessons about life here and my eyes have really been opened to a greater understanding of why things happen in the past and how to learn from them. It truly is amazing how many opportunites God puts before us to take part of His work, saving others. As I have been looking back this past week on those who I have come in contact with over my short life so far, it has been shocking at all of the opportunites that I kinda wasted by not doing my part in the work and loving them better or inviting them to come back to the Gospel and come closer unto Christ. It really has been a stark reality.

So yesterday almost my entire district was able to go to the Mexican Consolate. It was really fun! Now I say almost all because one Elder is going to Boise today to go to the consolate there because they ran out of visas here, and one Elder still hasn't gotten any word on his visa application. It has been really hard for him to deal with the only one not knowing what is going to happen to him, and I have been trying to comfort him and make sure he is doing ok, but I can tell it has been hard for him. Anyways, back to yesterday! So right after lunch we got on a bus to head up to SLC, and I was thinking that I was going to be able to stay awake the whole ride up so I could see where friends lived as we passed by and most importantly see our street. But, I ended falling asleep pretty much the whole ride there. This work is exausting, but defnitely the best think ever! Anyways, It was really fun to be able to leave Provo for a little bit and get some "fresh" air haha honestly at first it felt really really weird leaving the MTC, and by the time we headed back here I was really anxious to get back here and get back to work. It took 4 hours for us to get up there, take a picture, sign litterally only 3 times, and then head back home. I kinda felt very unproductive, but I understand that certain messures have to be taken.

Anyways, yesterday during the devotional we had Neil L. Anderson from the 12 come speak to us, and since it was President Monson's Bday yesterday, he talked about the lessons that he, Elder Anderson, has learned from president  monson since he has been an apostle. The thing that I took most from it was a quote from Pres. Monson, "Do your duty, that is best. Leave unto the Lord, the rest." I really feel like I have been trying to do that here at the MTC. I have been trying to focus my energies 100 percent throughout the day on my duty as a missionary and leaving everything at home in God's hands. It has been really fun to see how well everyone is being taken care of at home, and I really feel like it is because I have been doing my duty, and just like in my poem in my "farewell" talk, leaving everyone at home in God's hands.

The most sprititually and emotionally uplifting thing that happened this past week was monday night when our teacher who got married 2 weeks ago came back. She has a tendency to not follow the lesson plan but follow what the spirit tells her what we need. So, instead of grammer instruction, she had us go around the room and have everyone say something that they like in everyone else in the district, one by one, for example, if it was my turn everyone would take a turn saying what they admired/liked about me. Not only was it an answer to my prayers to bring the district closer together (becuase for some reason I am still distrcit leader, even though we are only supposed to be in for 3 weeks and Im going on 5), but answers to my prayers that my district can notice how much I care about them. Almost every single one said that they truly felt how much I cared about them, among other things, but It was really special to know that my hard work to help these elders has not gone unoticed.

I love this work like none other! I challenge everyone to find someone that they can invite to come unto Christ more, such as inviting them to read their scriptures more or going to mutual or what not, but that is my assignment for everyone this week, and if that someone is yourself, even better! I love you all, (Especially you mom) siempre!


Elder Noel

Wed 8/15/2012 9:45 AM

Hola madre!!
First, thank you for the amazing package that you sent this week! I loved everything, especially the root beer and the photobook that you sent with all of those pictures, that really really meant a lot to me! Don't ever be shy to send more pictures of like Tanner and Brookie with their sports and family functions and what not, even though I am not there I still would like to know what is going on at home.
So things here at the MTC just keep getting better and better. It truly is amazing how when I work harder, use my time wiser and more effectively, that not only do I learn so much more, feel God's love for me more, but the things at home that I gave up just fall into place and are taken care of. I am glad to hear that Brookie has been doing better, I have been sincerely praying for her everyday in almost every prayer I say, so she has a little bit of extra help coming ;) So along with my calling, apprently district leaders are only supposed to serve for 3 weeks, at least that is how it usually is and what I was under the impression that is how it was supposed to be, but apprently for me there was an exception made, because this last sunday when I was expecting to be released, nothing happened. I don't know what lessons I still have to learn or to teach my district, but I have never really grown to love these Elders like I did last week. As a district we are doing so much better, and I think my district is finally starting to respect me, probably because I have been making a special effort everyday to show at least one of the elders that I care about them and ask everyone all the time if there is anything I can to do help them in anyway or if there is something I can do better as a distrcit leader. 
So this past sunday was one of the more amazing sundays I have had in a while, I wrote down 10 pages of promptings that I got throughout all my meetings, most of them from a talk by Elder Bednar, "The Character of Christ", so I am going to focus most of my letter this week on what I learned from that talk, which is the talk that I have been wanting to see ever since the first week I got here because I heard it was life changing, and well it was.
First, he starts off by saying that on our missions, it isn't what we say that makes a difference, but who we are, our character. That really struck me deep as he then defined character as a "list" of moreal qualities strongly developed, strikingly shown, and constantly lived. He then went and said what the overal character of Christ is, which is "He turns our when we would turn in." This means that when we would be selfish, think about ourselves, worrry about our own pain, Chirst would do the opposite and only thinking about others. When we would be complaining why me, Christ is always helping others. He talked about many examples of the Character of Christ, how when after in the Garden he healed the soldiers ear, which was a significantly less wound then Christ had just suffered,  and so on, but one really stuck out to me, when Satan tempted Christ after His 40 day fast. Elder Bednar pointed out that there was really only one temptation for Christ, and it was when satan would say "If you are the Son of God", to deny His divinity by using His power to turn inward and satisfy Himself, but since Christ was the ultimate example, He didn't give heed to temptation, and through the Joseph Smith Translation that after all of these trials Christ then only thought about John in prison and sent angels to minister unto John. Bednar also said that turning outward to others is a testimony of our conversion. When we become more converted unto Christ, or becoming more like Christ, we should be turning out to others, looking for how we can better help others in our times of need. He then asked all of us a question, that I want to ask all of you, "What have you done LATELY to obtain true conversion (which is having a change of heart to come closer to Christ)" I started to think to my self that what I did lately was go on a mission, which was funny cause the next comment he made was that the greatest conversion on our mission should be us, but if we are focused on converting ourselves, turning inward, that it wont happen. We missionaries need to be focused on what Christ was focused on, others. We need to be constantly helping others, worrying about what we can do to help others, not about what others can do for us. He said that as we turn outward to others, we will be blessed, but yet again, if that is what we focus on, it wont happen. We need to focus on blessing others lives. The last piece of advice that he gave was concerning  gospel study, which was an answer to my prayers cause I have been wondering how I can better my studies. He suggested that we get a fresh, inexpensive Book of Mormon with a study journal, choose a single topic to study, and mark the daylights out of it, only marking scriptures that have to do with the topic chosen for the ENTIRE book. He said that if we started now, by the time us misisonaries are his age we should have about 400 copies of the Book of Mormon, each one dedicated to a single topic in the Gospel. So, I took his challenge, and have started over focusing on the first prinicple of the Gospel, faith. It has been amazing how open my eyes have become from doing this!! I am only through 1 nephi chapter 12, and I have been studying for over 4 hours since sunday and I have written 5 pages of notes/spiritual impressions. I challenge EVERYONE to do this, you will be amazed and the spiritual insight you will recieve.
I love you all so much, thank you for all of the letters and words of insignt! I treasure them deeply :)
Elder Noel

Wed 8/8/2012 9:20 AM

Hola mi familia! 

Como estan? Ok so here is the confermation on the plaque, DC section 4 verse 2. The little scripture that I have been putting on the back of all my envalopes are scriptures that I have read over the past week and have felt prompted to share with those at home.

Anywho, on to how this week has been. So this past two weeks our district lost both of our teachers. One of them, Bro. Zivic, he was working two jobs here and then got accepted into the accounting program at byu and was also taking 2 online classes through harvard, so he was just swamped and couldn't do it anymore. But something cool about him is his dad is one of the first quarum of the 70, (I know my spelling has gotten super bad, thats what happens when you learn a new language) and his dad helped out our other teacher on her mission. Which brings me to Sister Jardine. She was our first investigator "bianca", who was one of her investigators while she was on her mission. well the reason why she left last week was because she is getting married on the 10th, and so she is going to be gone for the next 2 weeks. It is really sad that we wont get to be taught by Bro. Zivic again, but I guess it is kinda nice to have a fresh investigator to start over with and actually be organized and feel like we are teaching them something, even though we did commit both our investigators Mario and Bianca to be baptized today actually haha.

This week at the TRC was so awesome! I have got to say that he TRC (training resource center) is one of my favorite parts here at the MTC. It is where we get to talk to real people, learn their real needs, and teach them what we feel they need in their lives. This week we got to teach a volunteer who was from Argentina, Elder Underwood. This man was so amazing. So we are told to try to focus our lessons on certain fundamentles of misisonary work, and this week was recieving revelation through church attendance, and when we started teaching and asked him how he felt about attending churhc often with an open heart to recieve answers, he basically taught our whole lessson to us!! haha it was great, and we were able to have a really sprititual discussion (all in spanish mind you) about sacrament meeting and the experiences that we have had and the answers that we have recieved while attending church. Also, at the end of the lesson Elder Underwood gave us some really good advice and really upped our spirits by telling us how much the spirit was with us and how great of missionaries we are and are going to be, and that was a real comfort to me.

Well, with my district things are going better I guess. I have stopped worrying about trying to correct everything that they do (thank you dad for your advice on that) and just try teaching them by my actions. It has definitely opened my eyes to how obedient I need to be to be able to set the right example for these Elders. I feel like I have really been able to connect with one elder however, elder johnson. Over the past week I have been able to truly befriend him and show him that I care about him, and he has really opened up to me and his attitude has completely changed. Even if I didn't have any effect on the other Elders in my district, I find comfort in knowing that Heavenly Father knew I was able to connect with this Elder and help him find a friend and find enjoyment in reading the scriptures. It has ben such a joy to see his countanence and attitude about missionary work and the language change completely, now I can't wait to see that change happen to someone in Mexico where they change their whole life around! I love this work more than anything else!!!

Thank you  all again for your letters, I love getting the dearelders so much! Oh and grandma ruth, I am working on a letter for you, I got the package you sent on saturday, and food wise I am more than good, so if you and grandpa would like to send some ties that would be great =) Oh and mom, I sent home my sd card, you should get it today, but if you could print off those pictures I asked you to as well as send me a picture of the family and send it with my shirt, some more ibc rootbeer, and twix bars that would be great :) I love you mom!



Elder Noel 

Wed 8/1/2012 9:32 AM

Hey there loved ones!!

Thank you so much for the packages!! You really have noooo idea how much comfort they bring and how much of an answer to prayers that they are. So yes I have gotten the packeges you sent mom (and that card was totally awesome, when you do send my other shirt, yes i do want it, it would be awesome if you used another one of those cards, they are hilarious!), and thank you grandma for the cinnamon rolls, those are probably my favorite out of the 2, which by the way grandma I will be writting you personally thanking you :)

Anywho, the language has been coming in like a flood. Our lessons are going so good! It has evolved from us learning certain lines of spanish to recite during our visits to us being able to really learn the doctrine, learn certain words that are used in the lesson, and then be able to give a full 30+ min lesson! It really is amazing! It is so interesting to see how when we are preparing our lessons promptings that I will get to just read over something during our study time, and then have the Spirit prompt me to say it during our lesson and have the lesson take a turn and talk about someting completely different! Our last lesson with Mario was absolutly amazing. We had already commited him to baptism, but it was kind of a conditional if he would recieve answers. Well during our lesson we just continued drilling baptism, we talked about everything. How to be baptized, why we are baptized, blessings of baptism, just everything! One of the coolest parts of the lesson was when my companion asked him what he felt like he needed to do to get baptized, Mario paused, and then he said get baptized!! My soul was filled with such great joy, it was amazing!!!! Unfortunately, this last week was our teachers last week so we wont be teaching him any more (because our teachers role play investigators that they had), I definitely leard a lot from that man.

Next, I just want to say that if any of you ever think about writting me, do it!! I can tell you right now that it is a prompting from the Lord. I pray so much to have comfort from the Lord, and we all know that the Lord works through others to answer prayers, so if the thought ever crosses your mind "I should write chase", DO IT!! We are blessed with, and there is no reason why you cant write me more. I promise that if you write me, I will write you back a personaly letter, and that because you would be following the promptings of the spirit you will be blessed even more so.

I miss everyone, the work has been super hard, not to mention ive been pretty sick the past weekish (ask dad, i told him in his email more about it). I feel like I am not doing as good as I could with my calling as district leader, but I am trying so hard, my prayers are considerably filled with pleads for my district more so than for me and the family. I just dont know what else I can do, I feel like the way to get them to like me is to let them slack off, but one of my responsibilites is to not tolerate any innappropriate behavior, and I feel like missuse of time is extremely innappropriate. I just don't know what to do. Please keep me in your prayers, I can feel your love quite often here, but I'll be honest the more you write me (preferably through dearelder since i can only check email once a week) the easier it is to get through the week, I have a feeling that was another reason why this last week was so hard because I really havent gotten a lot of letters, but I've been holding in there. I love you all, thank you for the lessons that you have taught me over my life.



Elder Noel

Wed 7/25/2012 9:17 AM

Hola Mi Familia!

 Muchos gracius por su palabras!! :) (Thank your for your words) They are all so comforting to read and know what is going on in the real world. It really is crazy how seperated from the world us missionaries are, for example, we didn't hear about the shooting in colorado untill monday from our teacher. It is crazy! 

I hope Bear Lake was fun, it really is such a magical place, I miss being with all the family, laughing and having fun, but I am having such an amazing time here!! All the devotionals are amazing (even though we haven't had a memeber from the quorum of the 12 yet), but I feel like all of them are directed at me! Only thing I am going to do different is on sundays they play church movies, but they also do previous talks that were given here that only us missionaries can see, and last sunday was one by David A. Bendar about the Character of Christ, my comp. wanted to see the movie, and I wish we went to the talk, I heard it was life changing. Hopefully I will be able to see it again before I leave here. 

Well some news with me. So yesterday a third of our district left to go to the Peru MTC (Brookie, including the one I worked out with, which btw I found out he was an Ambercrombi and Fith model last year so yes I guess you would think he is "hot"), but our district leader was included in those for, so on Sunday they had to call a new one. I woke up sunday and felt great. I thought to myself that they needed to call a new district leader and was thinking that they had already talked to whoever it was going to be so I was safe. Well, while I was sitting in Sacrament meeting before it started, talking with fellow missionaries who were passing the sacrament with me, and one of the counselors pulls aside our old district leader, and then the other memeber of the bishopbric comes up to me and says he needs to speak with me. I am now the new district leader.... It has been a very humbling and eye opening experience. I thought I had a love for my district before, but ever since they were put under my stewardship I have really never felt such love for a group of men. It is been interesting the insights the Lord has shown me to the life of these Elders by just looking at their countenance. It has been truly humbling as I have been in a couple leadership trainings already, I havent had to do interviews yet, but I have a feeling that as I grow to love these elders more that those interviews will be a very spiritual and eye opening experience for me. I don't know why the Lord chose me, but I have been praying all day every day that I can server in this calling to the greatest of my capabilities!

I love this work so much! It truly is the work of God. On our devotional last night by Gary J Coleman, he brought up something that really struck me. Since we are going out in the Lords name, we need to do as he did in tercero Nefi (Thats 3 nephi in spanish). He is always inviting the Nephites to come unto Him, and that is what we need to do as missionaries, we need to be constantly inviting others to come unto Christ, whether it be by prayer, reading the scriputres, or being baptized, we need to invite others to come unto Christ. Something else was impressed upon my mind. We are acting under God's power, and in Christ's name. I've realized that as we are worthy, have the Spirit with us, and do everything that we are doing, our teaching can be as powerful as if the Savior's teachings to the Nephites, because if we are teaching by the Spirit, is won't be us that the investigators are listening to, but it will be the same power that the Savior taught with, the same companion that the Savior had, they will be taught by the Holy Ghost. I find that an extremely high calling and goal to set, to live my life as I need to, obeying with exactness (Thanks gpa!), and using my priesthood as Christ did. He is the perfect example, especially for us missionarires, and it is extremely humbling knowing that we are going in the stead of the Prophet, as well as Christ, I just hope that I well please the Lord with my fruits that I bring from my labors.

I love you all so much!! Please continue to send dearelders, if anyone is on the computer, please think of me and just write me a little note, you would be surprised how Heavenly Father is working through you to comfort me and give me the strength that I need. I feel all of your prayers everyday, keeping my bright spirits up and loving this work to the maximum capacities that I can muster!

With love,

Elder Noel


p.s. Mom, I don't need the cd's yet becuase we don't have a cd player, I would like to get some new sheet covers for my letters, they are almost filled up. Oh and grandma and grandpa gurgel, thank you sooooo much for the brownies! :) I would defintitely love some more IBC rootbear, that would be amazing :) I think that should be it for now, I havent been able to figure out how to email pictures, but I heard I can print them off somewhere so Im going to do some searching.

Wed 7/18/2012 9:32 AM

Hello Momma! 

So it is nearing the end of week 2 is crazy how fast time flies by here! Seriously after the first Sunday the days just seem to mush together.....but I totally love it! My district is growing so close to eachother, even though next week there are going to be 4 missionaries leaving to the Lima MTC, we are like a family here. There is one Elder, Elder Brasher, that I have gotten really close to. We work out now every day, this kid is jacked! I've never worked out so hard, but we talk all the time and we have just gotten to be good friends.

Anyways, thank you all sooooo much for the packages!! They truly are a treasure here, and my room thinks that you guys are the best family ever! (I kinda agree with them on that one) Thank you for you letter to me, it was really special that you had written that for me. Just so i can get it out before I forget I would love a shower lufa (im running out of soap faster than expected) and my cord for my camera or a card reader if you cant find it so I can send you pictures but im going to try to use my companions.

So now to the questions. My day is extremely busy everyday except for p day. Here is just an example, and most days are like this. So everyday we have 1 hour of personal study at 7, then breakfast till 840. From there we either have 1 hour of language study or start our class for 3 hours. When we have language study we then to TALL, which is like a computer aided language study for 1 hour, but we do language study and Tall everyday, it just changes what time depending on the day. We then have lunch everyday at 1250, and gym is usually right before or right after lunch, it depends on when our class is. We then usually have an additional hour to study whatever we want, personal, language, or comapionship, then at 540 we have dinner, then at 630 we have another 3 hour class, then at night is when I write personal letters (so by the way, if you want a personal letter from me I would greatly appreciate anyone writting me on dearelder during the week, *cough* brookie and tanner)

But I am loving it here soo much!! The spirit here is so strong, and the food is actually really good! I have gaind about 5 lbs since I got here, but it is because I have been getting quite a bit bigger from working out, I actually have a thinnger waist and I might have to punch another hole in one of my belts if this keeps up, also I have been eating like a horse! Seriously I eat close to 3 entrees a meal.....ya I east a lot.

Well I love you all, and here is my lessons I learned during the week from devotionals/class. This is from Elder Holland in a video we watched. "Dont ever live life wiht the regret of what could have been. Obedience is the first law of missionary work as well as the first law of everything in the Gospel. Obedience is the most funamentle issue of all eternity."


Elder Noel