Tuesday, February 19, 2013

From Tampico (Miramar) to Zona Valles (Lomas de Vergel)


martes, el 19 de febrero, 2013

Hey Everybody,

I have a few minutes today to send a quick email to update everyone where I am and who I am with in my new area.

I am with Elder Dominguez and we are in the Lomas de Vergel area in the Zona Valles.  We are assigned to the central part of this city, and it is pretty awesome.

Oh, and to update on Dad's question of new things, I forgot to say that there are crocodiles, iguanas, parrots and really loud roosters.

Here are some pictures. If you want a specific picture of something, I will try and take one and send it when I can.

Have a great week!
Sincerely,
Elder Holladay


Elder Holladay near the Tampico Mexico Temple

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lunes, el 18 de febrero, 2013

Dear Family,

My first week in Mexico was truly amazing. The weather is warm during the day, moderate in the afternoon and can sometimes get really cold during the night. Yesterday was the only day that it rained but it has been cloudy the other days. It started raining yesterday starting at 5:10. It wasn't a hard rain, but it was a nice sprinkling to keep the dust down band not too much to get too muddy. It almost feels like North Carolina humidity-wise and temperature-wise.

Church is amazing here. It is a little bit different but I love it. Missionaries get the opportunity to teach the Principles of the Gospel class and I was able to talk about when we should pray and with whom in Español. It was truly a miracle.

I have seen a lot of the city and some of the outlyng parts as well. We live in Miramar but other than that I have no idea where all the other parts of the city are.

There are many different types of architecture here, and the bridge does have a European look to it. There are many lakes around but we don't go near any of them because the warning signs of crocodiles. There are a lot of different plants here, I need to take more pictures of them and send them to you. As for the animals, the only difference from America is that there are a lot of strays. There are also many horses just wondering around the city eating plants and such.The fruit here is fresh daily and when they aren't used that day they are made in agua. I found out that there is a difference from agua and fresca, agua is water and is usually combined with fruit juice for concentrate that makes really a good tasting drink. With fresca, it literally is soda bought from the store.

This week I have been working with Elder Oliveros and Elder Vargas and they are truly amazing. I have been teaching them English and they have been helping me with my Español, but I still need a lot of work. I understand most of the words being said but when attempting to conjugate and put them into a sentence so I can understand what they are saying I get confused, which is good. I need to be confused to learn better and to push me to become the best I can.

I am being transfered today, not sure where and with whom, but I will keep you updated as much as I can.

Hope everyone is doing well. 

Sincerely, 
Elder Holladay

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Tampico Mexico - February 11, 2013

Hey Mom,

Mexico is very different from Utah, but I feel at home here even though I do not understand everything that everyone is talking about. I can pick up words here and there and express myself here and there, but for the most part I am having a party trying to figure out what everyone is saying.

The culture here is amazing and the people are all so humble, loving and kind. They also help me with my Spanish when trying to speak it. The children here are fun to talk to because they will laugh at what you say and then correct you while you are laughing because you know what you said wasn't correct.

When getting off the plane in Tampico it was pretty amazing. Instead of going into a terminal right away there were people there with step ladders for us to get off, and we went straight into the imigration office to get everything settled paperwork-wise. We were then met by the Mission President and his wife, and they took us home to a great meal of tortillas, meat, lemons, cilontro, green salsa, red salsa, and pineapple.

I am having fun and working hard. We are not allowed to track so all our work is with members, less-actives, and investigators. We try not to have any lessons without any members present so the investigators have friends to come to church with.

I hope everything is going well and that everyone is healthy and safe.

Love,
Elder Holladay

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Elder Holladay arrived in Tampico

Elder Holladay, pictured here with his mission president and his wife, arrived in Tampico Mexico Friday night, February 8, 2013.

He will stay in Tampico for about a week until transfers take place next week.

We look forward to receiving an email from him tomorrow.

Friday, February 8, 2013

On his way to Mexico -- February 8, 2013!

el 7 de febrero 2013

Hey Mom,

We went to the Mexican Consulate yesterday and we received our visas today and we are going to Mexico tomorrow morning at 9:30am to the airport. I will try to call when I get there, we shall see.

We gave out our first Book of Mormon to a man who missed one of his stops on the track system and he decided to talk to us. We got to know him and he wanted to know more about our church so we told him of the Book of Mormon and how it is another testament of Jesus Christ. He wanted to know where to get one, so we gave one to him, asked if he wanted missionaries to meet with him and now have his information for the missionaries in Utah so they can do their job. 
It was truly amazing.

Love you all and I hope you have a great week,

Sincerely,
Elder Holladay

Final Week at the MTC

el 5 de febrero 2013 (email)

Hey Mom,
I have a quick moment to email people and to say that we are going to the consulate tomorrow to sign our visas tomorrow and probably going to Mexico the following week if it is the will of God.

Have an amazing day,
Elder Holladay

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el 4 de febrero 2013 (email)

Hey Mom,
So with our district, there are three Elders going to another mission and two others and I are going to Tampico, or that is our assigned mission. The other three were put into reassignments but we were not. Those Elders leave this week and our names were put into the Mexican Consulate so we can get our visas. Depending on how everything works out, we will either stay here until we get our visas or be put into reassignments until we get our visas. Either way, or another way, it is the will of God and everything will work out in the end.
Personally, I believe we are in the MTC to help someone or we are waiting till our investigators are being spiritually prepared or something else the Lord has in mind for us.
A few quick thoughts before I disperse for a while:
We need to look for the gospel of Jesus Christ in everything. The weather here last week was pretty awesome.
Saturday morning it was foggy and you couldn't see 50ft in front of you, you saw enough to take another step after another step. It is exactly like revelation most of the time, God gives us enough sight to follow the path He has put us on so that we wil rely on Him for further light and knowledge.
The evening it started to rain. This has two symbolisims; He is sad when we go off the path and choose wrongly. It is also repentance as it clears up our fears, worries, and pains.
Lastly, it snowed that night. He is happy when we become humble enough to repent and come to Him.
I hope everyone is doing well and having fun,
Love,
Elder Holladay

January 2013 Update

el 31 de enero 2013 (email)

Hey Mom,
We are not being reassinged because they forget to put our names in but our names are being put into the consulate probably next week. I will keep you updated
Love,
Elder Holladay

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el 28 de enero 2013 - 5:09pm (email)

Dear Mom,

We receive our reassignments Thursday and then we will leave either 6 hours from then or sometime the next week.

Have a great week!

love,
Elder Holladay

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el 28 de enero 2013 - 10:10am (email)

Dear Family,
I am not heading out for Mexico today because our district did not receive visas and in fact no one is going to Mexico  because of visa problems. We are receiving reassingments this Thursday and I will have a chance to call to update you then.
Thank you dad for sending me the steripen. It will be a blessing not drinking or using water that is non-potable.
We had some fun weather here the past few days. On Saturday there was a dense fog here and you couldn't see 50ft in front of you, that was when we were running to the gym. After gym the fog lifted a little bit so you could see 100ft. Yesterday it was a little foggy in the morning and then it started to rain. We thought it was going to get warmer because the snow was melting as well. After dinner though it started snowing and hasn't stopped yet. It sounds like the weather over there is pretty exciting as well.
The stomache flu has started here again and we are not allowed to shake hands again, which is fine with me. I liked using my elbows during the first sickness and it's almost a habit now. Lots of people from our zone were sick but they have since recovered.
Since we were supposed to be leaving today we have been realesed as zone leaders. I'm guessing the Hermanas at the Peru CCM are probably in the field doing missionary work, which is awesome. At the moment there are 3 districts in our zone, we are receiving another one this week and two elders are moving in with us. There is almost no room in the MTC for new missionaries, its crazy how many come in each week.
This Sunday our district sang "Oh how lovely was the morning" starting out in English and then switching to Spanish every other verse. The first verse started with me singing, then after a phrase another elder, and then another until after 6 phrases all of us sang together. After that I switched to bass to give it variety and then went from there increasing and decreasing volume depending on the verse. The last one needed to be the loudest because it had the most powerful message, especially in Español.
Hope everyone is doing alright and having fun.
Keep up the good work!
Love,
Elder Holladay

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el 25 de diciembre 2012, el 7 de enero 2013, el 14 de enero 2013 (letter)

Spanish is coming pretty well. I can teach investigators basic things and bear my testimony, which is good. My tongue is so lazy I can only vibrate it. I'm sure it will come some day when I can roll my R's.

The Hermanas dispersed to Peru last week on Tuesday. We received a new district last Wednesday and receive another one this Wednesday as well. As for choir, our schedule only allows us to sing on Sunday during practice, which is fine for us. We have class during their practice on Tuesdays.

The way to get Mexican visas has changed and we re-signed our visa paperwork three weeks ago, so we are hoping they come soon. I have been fasting every Sunday and this Wednesday we are fasting as a District.

Hope everything is going well.

Love,
Elder Holladay