Mission Detail

The church has been in the Monterrey Area since 1922 but as you can imagine if you know the history of Mexico, the first 20 years were rocky. Religious persecutions of all kinds took place beginning in the late 1920′s. It wasn’t until the 1950′s that the first district was organized here. Our actual mission, the Mexico Monterrey West Mission was formed in 1994.

Our mission consists of twelve stakes and two districts. In Monterrey, which is in the state of Nuevo Leon, the mission includes six stakes. The rest of the stakes are in the state of Coahuila. Three stakes are in Saltillo. Two stakes are in Monclova. Piedras Negras has one stake with the two districts about an hour away from it to the south Nueva Rosita and to the northwest Acuña. Both Acuña and Piedras Negras are border towns with Texas.

Monday, December 23, 2013

Rambling Spanish Speaking Santa

Hey everyone and Merry Christmas! 

So these past three days have been awesome! We had our christmas party on the 21st and I had so much fun seeing everyone in the mission of course it went by way to fast! The party is the only meeting we will ever have that really has nothing to do with missionary work! So from 10 to 4 we could relax! We also had our ward Christmas party so another party is always nice except they had a dance at the end of the night so that was awkward not being able to dance we ended up leaving a little early... 

Of course during the parties Santa came and who knew he knew spanish as well! Its a god thing to or else he would have quite a few angry little kids! The Santa that they picked out was a little bit of a rambler and I think he took 30 minutes to give a 5 minute speech and watching the little kids get antsy was pretty funny! 

Today we went to the Huasteca again but this time with the whole zone! That was crazy fun! Let me tell ya hanging out with 28 missionaries is pretty dang fun! 

Well thats about it! Thanks so much for the Christmas wishes! 

Elder Ahlmer

Monday, December 16, 2013

Alan's Baptism

Hey Everyone!

So another week in Mexico! Things are great! I really am enjoying my time that I'm spending here!

This Friday was the baptism of Alan it was such an amazing experience! We have visited him and his family a few times this week and there is such a big difference between when I first met them and now! They re so much happier! Also we have been meeting with this couple names Junior and Monserat. They have been living together for 4 years and have 3 kids and one on the way. We have been working with them trying to get them to be married. I don't get why its so hard for people to do it here but people have been living together for a good 15 years but don't want to get married it drives me nuts! But anyways they told us they set a date for the 27th of December to be married! Im so happy for them! Were meeting with them today and are planning on asking them to be baptized the same day because they cant be baptized without being married. Well junior is already a member but Monserat no. Im so excited! 

This Monday night Elder Diaz and I had a pretty deep talk and things have been so much better between us! We talked about what we need help with and I told him how its been hard for me to put my personality into Spanish because Im always focusing on the words. He ended up giving me a blessing and it was an experience that I dont think I will ever forget. Since then I have noticed such a difference about how I feel during lesions and how much easier it is to speak! 

So we were in the house of a member the other day and we honestly met Michael Jackson's biggest fan! He is 6 years old and he spends the majority of the day searching YouTube for just dance videos he can follow to dance like him! Not only that but he dresses up like him in each song with a black shirt tie hat and all! Hes dang good too! I wish I would have recorded it! 

Thats about all I hope all is well!

Elder Ahlmer

Alan's Baptism

Monday, December 9, 2013

Sleep Walking Again

Hey everyone! 

This week has been pretty great I really like my new area! My companion and I are getting along good and working hard. He has this crazy obsession with dogs it's a little freaky to be honest. Like he actually bits them and sniffs them like he's a dog... its funny because Elder Camagra our Zone Leader is terrified of dogs, like he won't even let them get near him! The weather has been really crazy like from Thursday it was honesty 32 Celsius and Friday it was 8 Celsius, We went to bed with the AC on and woke up as blocks of ice. 

Also, this week I started sleepwalking again. This Tuesday I woke up at midnight and woke up Elder Diaz (because I always have to wake him up) but this time I did it in my sleep and we didn't notice that it was actually 1 in the morning until after both of us had exercised, showered, shaved and gotten dressed... I don't know how he didn't kill me for that but luckily we spent a good half hour laughing after we got back into bed. We were pretty tired that next day!

They also have a crazy tradition here that if you add up the numbers on your bus tickets and they equal 21, you can turn to any girl and they will give you a kiss. So whenever we get onto a bus we all look at our tickets to see if anyone got lucky. I don't know why we do it because it's not like we can actually turn them in! 

Today we had a District activity. We climbed the Huasteca. It was crazy cool and so much fun! It was crazy to be outside of the big city for the first time in 3 months! I'll try and send some pictures! 

The baptism with Alan fell through because he got cold feet but we met with him and set a new date for this Friday.  I'll make sure and let ya know what happens!

Elder Ahlmer

The District


Monterrey 
District On a Hike to Huasteca

Elder Gonzalez


Hiked Huasteca 
Holding up the Mountain

Look Savannah, I have a frog!



Monday, December 2, 2013

Transfers - San Pedro

Hello everyone!

So this week has been pretty noteworthy! So even though I was positive I wasn't going to change I was wrong. I am now in the Area La Fama A in San Pedro! Its one of the richest areas in Mexico! It's not Sierra Madre which is right by our area but it kicks my old area out of the park. There's only one downside, Its in the mountains and I honestly have never seen more steep hills in my life! Ill have legs of steel by the time Im done here! My new companion is named Elder Diaz. He is from Uruguay and this is his last change of his mission. He's an awesome guys and I know that I can learn a lot form him. The only problem is that since he is so close to being home he's pretty trunky (lazy). He doesn't like to do much. And being in a new area its kinda hard to plan by myself so the first few days were full of quite a bit of contacting! Oh and one of the weirdest things happened! The first day I was here I was homesick but not for home. For my other area! Not that this area is less cool or anything but I miss the members that I knew for 12 weeks and investigators and my old comp that actually worked...

Elder Diaz honestly speaks a good three words of english and I love it because I have learned so much already! At times its hard to explain things and trying to quote movies forget it! We don't talk about home ever because our lives were so different and thats nice keeps me more focused. Things have already gotten a little tense between us as we plan for the next day and when I have to drag him around everywhere but we get over it! At times he has a hard time paying attention during lessons so Im really learning how to teach now! Its helped my Spanish a ton but It still would be nice if I could get him to contribute a little more… He's sick right now at the house and Im on devisions with a member. 

Okay the new area is pretty sweet! Our new house has an awesome view and the sunrise is so sweet every morning! But even more importantly we have a heater! So I don't spend all night trying to survive! The past few days have been crazy hot though! I really cant believe that its December! Yesterday Im sure mom was running around the house singing "December 1st is here at last and Christmas soon will be here." Cant say I don't miss that! 

So this week Ive been hitting the Area book pretty hard trying to find something to do and we came across a non active family that we have been working with to activate. They have a 9 year old boy named Alan that since he came last week and has been a bunch of times were going to baptize him this next Sunday! Not only that but their daughter who has 18 years wants to serve a mission now. We are doing all we can to keep them going strong in the church. We have had some amazing lessons with them and I know that we can keep them going strong in the church this change! Yesterday was an open house for the temple and we all as a ward rented a big bus and went it was a crazy cool experience and we got to bring Alan and his family and a couple investigators! Things are really moving along in this area! 

So this Sunday I met a Returned Missionary that just got back from Uruguay and guess what! He was the trainer of Elder England! Small world! I was so shocked when he said his name I didn't really know what to do! His mom is a Mama Gilleta so she gives us food like no other! Its like she's trying to make me fat! But also with my sick comp I got to experience some of her natural medicine stuff.... She like shakes his legs and asks questions and uses her arms for answers it's the weirdest thing ever! Then she taped a bunch of chi balancers (magnets) on my comp and kept on moving them around for like an hour… It was pretty weird but I guess Ill have to see how my comp is by tomorrow… 

Well, thats all for now! 

Elder Ahlmer

New Companion - Elder Diaz

Elder Maldonaldo and Frost
Elder England's Trainer Elder Marroquin - Small World

Monday, November 18, 2013

Elder Ahlmer's Lesson

I have taken a long long time to prepare this simple message. The life of a missionary is quite busy, but I have felt the need to send this kind of a message since General conference.  I hope you read it with a prayer in your heart. 
35 Say not ye, There are yet four months, and then cometh harvest? behold, I say unto you, Lift up your eyes, and look on the afields; for they are white already to bharvest.
 36 And he that reapeth receiveth awages, and gathereth fruit unto life eternal: that both he that soweth and he that reapeth may brejoice together.
 37 And herein is that saying true, One asoweth, and another reapeth.
 38 I sent you to areap that whereon ye bestowed no labour: bother men laboured, and ye are entered into their labours.
Alright, in this story we hear that there are 3 Different things going on here:
The Field
The Sower
The Reaper
Okay Shelf that.. This week I had the opportunity to teach the class of Gospel Principles during the Sunday School hour of church. The theme was about the Spirit world and the second coming. I realized something that was pretty important...
“At some moment in the world to come, everyone you will ever meet will know what you know now.  They will know that the only way to live forever in association with our families and in the presence of our Heavenly Father and His Son, Jesus Christ, was to choose to enter into the gate by baptism at the hands of those with authority from God.  They will know that the only way families can be together forever is to accept and keep sacred covenants offered in the temples of God on this earth.  And they will know that you knew.  And they will remember whether you offered them what someone had offered you”  - Pres. Eyring
We learn something important from this quote. It´s that there really isn´t any excuse to not sharing the Gospel with everyday people. And how dumb we feel later, when we are standing next to someone we could have introduced to the Gospel, in the Judgement Day. 
This is the work of salvation, the fruit ready to be harvested (the everyday people), the sower (the everyday member), the reaper (the everyday missionary). This is the Lord´s work, and this is his Vineyard (Jacob 5). He knows which fruits are ready and who needs to go to work to bring to pass his mighty work. We are his Brothers and his Sisters, We are all part of this eternal family. Everyone has a spot in the Kingdom of our Father. A throne save especially for each one of us. We just have to earn it, preform our labors... today (Alma 34:32).
So let´s get to work. 

We are not alone in this grand cause. God has an Army of angels, those that already know the truth and have passed on, guided by their captain the Holy Ghost. They are their ready to prepare the way for you as you embark in the war against this dying world, this carnal world full of sin, reined by the adversary. Our job right now is to polish up, put on that armor and save souls, as much members as missionaries. And if you work for it this Army will be their to prepare your path. Prepare your thoughts, your feelings, the questions you will ask so that you can bring the Gospel to one of Gods children. 

Imagine yourself being the perfectly polished instrument that the Lord chooses for the child of God that is being prepared to accept the Gospel. He will put that child in your path because He knows that you are ready, because He knows that only you are the right kind of tool to change their life. 

I would like to dwell on what Eyring taught us earlier... Imagine the joy you will have, if not now, later, when you have brought someone into the light. The Gospel is the only thing that guides us through this world. It is the only thing that can get us through this life. 

John 1:1-5
 aIn the bbeginning was the Word, and the cWord was with God, and the dWord waseGod.
 The same was in the abeginning with God.
 All things were amade by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
 In him was alife; and the life was the blight of men.
 And the alight shineth in bdarkness; and the darkness ccomprehended it not.
It is the light in the darkness. 

D&C 88:49

49 The alight shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not; nevertheless, the day shall come when you shall bcomprehend even God, being quickened in him and by him.

Everything... Everything we do in this life is to get back to our heavenly Father. Everything that has to do with that will bring closer to him and thus bring us closer to untainted joy. The real kind of Joy that the world doesn´t have to offer. 

So its time to go to work,
A letter is good for nothing unless the reader does something about it. 
Its time to Polish up:
Read your scriptures like they are the air to your life and you are drowning. 
Pray like you´ve only got one day left.
Polish every aspect of you're being.

Your abilities are unique and specific to bring about this mighty work. Every tool is different just like every child of God is different. If you haven´t watched Ballard´s talk from Conference You should probably get to that. Or watch it again to refresh what he challenged us.

http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/10/put-your-trust-in-the-lord?lang=eng

Put your trust in the Lord. and bring 1 person into the church.... Before Christmas. 

Love you so much!!

Elder Ahlmer

The Ferraris in Mexico




Minuto Para Ganar

Hey everyone! 

This past few weeks have been great! We had a ward party playing minuto para ganar. Its like huge here! Almost every single house we walk into is watching it! But it was so much fun and basically the whole ward showed up! We managed to bring a couple inactive members and some of their friends. I think that had a good time because we've been teaching them ever since and the lessons are going really well. We are also having English classes every Tuesday night and that's always so much fun hearing the peoples accents but then I start to realize that that's probably how I sound to them....

This week has had the weirdest weather! We have gone from freezing to death to being cooked alive. The cold here is different like I don't know how to explain it but I think it has to do with the humidity. And it probably doesn't help being walking around all day. 

This week we had interviews with the president. That was pretty awesome getting his advice and opinion on things that I should do. Im thinking that my next companion probably wont be able to speak English... That'll be interesting but I know it'll be good because I really want to be more smooth when I talk. We went into the mission offices to work more on my visa as well. Turns out Ive been illegal this whole time that Ive been here! 

So a missionary kinda went a little crazy this week. Okay a lot crazy. Saturday night we got a call that all the missionaries in the mission were supposed to report to their houses as quick as possible lock the door and don't take unknown calls. That was pretty weird. I wanted to know what was going on so badly but nobody really knew. The next day we found out that a missionary had faked his own kidnapping to get money from the church.... Yeah crazy. But nothing really happened after that the president had a bunch of interviews with him and he finally confessed. He got sent home and thats about it.

This Sunday we went to the baptism of Louise and that was so cool because we got to know him pretty well as the other missionaries taught him in our ward. He's 17 and now is preparing to serve a mission as well! Im so excited for him he's a really cool kid and the gospel has changed his life so much! 

Keep me updated about whats happening!

Elder Ahlmer

Addee's Twin




Monday, November 4, 2013

The Gloria Family

Hey everyone! 

This week was a little different because we had Halloween and Day of the Dead. Halloween is basically the same here as it is in the states. So naturally on Halloween all we planned on doing is nocking doors. People were a little disappointed with our costumes.... Day of the Dead wasn't quite as big as I thought it was going to be. Its kinda like our Memorial Day, everyone just visits their ancestors and they have sugar skulls all over the place along with the same things to honor their ancestors. Nobody really painted their faces I guess thats something more people do in the South. We went to a menos activo house that night and ate this type of bread that they only make during this time of year that was really good! We ate it with some weird hot chocolate but it was good! 

Im still sleepwalking just about every night but its has been a little more mellow except for Thursday night. I guess I yelled something and ran into the the room tripping over a bunch of chairs and tables. I don't really remember it but I've got some solid bruises on my knees so its hard to argue! 

My comp and I are getting along really well and Im just counting my blessings because I know it wont always be like this with every comp I have! It's so weird being with someone 24/7 when you've never met them before! Whenever we got home for the day I make sure he takes his shoes off outside because man I didn't know someones feet could ever smell that bad! He could use that stuff as a weapon! I guess we don't have to worry about being kidnapped anymore because all he has to do is take of his shoes and everyone will pass out. He kinda gets a little crazy at night time. Its like the second we get home for the day his brain just shuts off. I just hurry and shower and get into bed as fast as possible ha ha. I guess I cant complain too much I wake him up just about every night sleepwalking!

We worked a lot with menos activo families this week and that went pretty well. Its pretty crazy to see all the people that the week they got baptized was the last week they ever attended. We met this family that is really cool. We call them the Gloria family because all of their names are Gloria. Theres The Grandma and mom and daughter that own a store just in front of their house. Their daughter has 5 years and she reminds me so much of Addee. Ive even slipped and called her Addee once! She always has so much energy and is just going 100 miles an hour. We brought them to church this sunday and trying to get her to sit still was nearly impossible! I finally let her use my puzzle that I have to teach the plan of salvation to at least keep her distracted. But they liked church and we are going to make sure that they keep coming! 

I was lucky enough that Craig got to come down to Monterrey a few weeks ago to work on the temple here. Naturally my mom gave him a huge package to bring with! I don't think she realizes that they have stores here too ha ha. But I really appreciate the snacks that they don't have down here! Craig took us out to dinner which was really nice of him. It was crazy funny watching him try and tell the taxi driver where to go in English. Im pretty sure he scared the poor guy for life! It was great hearing about the states! Its weird to think that life is actually going on up there! 

Keep me updated about whats going on!

Elder Ahlmer

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Monterrey Temple at Christmas

110th Operating Temple
Announcement:  21 December 1995 
Groundbreaking and Site Dedication:  4 November 2000 by Lynn A. Mickelsen
Public Open House:  8–20 April 2002 
Dedication:  28 April 2002 by Gordon B. Hinckley

Site:  31,466 square meters.
Exterior Finish:  White granite from Vermont.
Ordinance Rooms:  Two ordinance rooms (two-stage progressive) and two sealing.
Total Floor Area:  16,498 square feet.

Temple Locale
Aggrandized by a backdrop of beautiful mountains and hills, the Monterrey México Temple stands in Valle Alto—located in the southeastern section of Monterrey—along the National Highway near the famous Cerro de la Silla. Sharing the grounds, and built at the same time as the temple, is a lovely stake center open to any visitors wishing to join Sunday worship services. The lush grounds around the temple are also open to the public for reverent walks.

Temple Facts
The Monterrey México Temple was the twelfth temple built in Mexico, though it was the second temple announced for Mexico.
The Church originally selected a site for the Monterrey México Temple adjacent to Colegio Labastida on Avenida Vasconcelos in San Pedro. The Church won an ensuing three-year legal dispute initiated by opposing neighbors but, in the end, opted to select another site.
The site of the Monterrey México Temple was chosen in March 2000. A building permit was issued on June 27, 2000, and ground was broken for the temple a few months later on November 4—nearly 5 years after the temple was announced.
The design created for the Monterrey México Temple was substituted with a smaller standard design when the location changed to Valle Alto. The change allowed for more green area and necessary parking.

The Plumber

Hola!

Winter is here or that's what the people are telling me.. The weather is just crazy different one day like yesterday is like 95 and then theres days like today where its probably a good 60. So basically everyday is completely different! That's always nice because the food here doesn't vary much. Basically beans rice tortillas and some weird kind of meat for every meal. 

We finally got out boiler hooked up this week! I guess the added cold weather gave us a little more of an incentive! Hot showers are pretty amazing. After 2 months of risking hypothermia every time I get into the shower it was pretty weird taking my time and just relaxing. 

This Sunday was daylight savings.We knew it was daylight savings and we thought we were so on top of it until Sunday morning we knocked on a nonactive members door to bring them to church at what we thought was 930. We were a little surprised when she came out grumbling why we came at 730. Yeah we changed our clocks the wrong way. So we woke up at 4 instead of 6. Since walking to our house and back would have taken a good hour we decided to study in a nearby park for two hours as we waited for the rest of the world to wake up. We felt pretty stupid after that. Luckily she wasn't too mad at us! 

Later on that Sunday at about 7 we went to the church to go to the bathroom. Nobody was there but us. When I went to flush the yurnal all the sudden the pipe started shooting water straight up into the ceiling! I honestly felt like I was in a movie like that never happens! I tried to fix it but then the whole pipe just fell off and the water started shooting straight out and into the other wall! We had no idea what to do! We panicked a bit and ran around the building to find the main shutoff valve. We had no idea where it was so we ended up calling the bishop and he said he had to shut it off and he was on his way. We ran around a little more and tried to fix it again. I grabbed the pipe and somehow managed to put it back into the wall and the water stopped. Just about this time the bishop pulled up to two soaking wet missionaries and water soaked bathroom. We shut off the water main and mopped up as best as we could. Luckily in Mexico everything is cement so nothing got ruined. The bishop told us that it had happened earlier that week as well but hadn't had the time to fix it yet so that made me feel a little better that it wasn't really my fault! But I don't think Ill forget that 20 minutes of panic for a couple years! It was a solid movie moment!

It was Elder Robinson's birthday this week so that was pretty exciting! Well as exciting as it can be on your mission! We went to go pick up a member to bring to a lesson named Juan Pablo. Hes 21 and served in Tampico Mexico for 6 months but came home early. So he knows a little English but not much. When he found out it was Elder Robinson's birthday he wanted to go out to a restaurant and celebrate when we told he we cant we need to work he looked up at elder Robinson and said with really strong accent Grow some balls Elder. It was pretty funny hearing that in his accent. But later on that night we bought some steaks and they were crazy good!

This week we were meeting with a lot of part member families and met with a really cool girl named Frida. Shes 18 and he brother was baptized a few years ago. She has a kid and sometimes its a little difficult for her to focus but she has been reading everything we ask her so we cant complain too much. She couldn't come to church this week because she went to visit the father to her baby   in some other part of Monterrey but I'm hoping she will be able to come this week! We also met this man named Jesus and have been talking to him. He told us that he lived in the states for 2 years but was deported because of his drinking problem. But he has been turning his life around so that hopefully one day he can return. He has a wife and a baby boy now so he feels more of a responsibility but hes still pretty new were deciding in our lesson with him today if were going to keep or drop him. 

Well thats all for this week. How are the States?

Elder Ahlmer

Having a Sick Day for the Fence Climbing Elder

Hey everyone!

Sorry I didn't write Monday we got a call Sunday night at 10:30 that Monday isn't pray because were going to the temple again on Wednesday. That news shocked me a bit because I needed a Pday pretty bad! But it just made the first week of this change seem like forever! This week should go by quickly though! 

Last Tuesday we had changes. I was pretty nervous to see if I would be sent somewhere else or if I would have a new companion but we both ended up staying the same probably because I still have another 6 weeks of training. But that was still a pretty exciting phone call. 

This past Wednesday Elder Robinson and I finally got lost. We were going to a Hermanas house that we had never been to and we were already late we are supposed to eat at 2 and it was already 2:15. Conveniently Elder Robinson forgot the map... We kinda knew the general area but yeah it was a bad idea. The second bad decision we made was trying to cut through the university. The schools here are like legit prison! There completely fenced in and have bars on every window. We found and entrance and decided to cut across thinking there has to be another exit somewhere close. We were pretty wrong. We wondered around the University for a good 25 minutes before we found a little hole in the fence we squeezed through. We ended up on the side of this crazy busy street and just decided to walk along the sidewalk in the direction we thought it was. As we walked we started to recognize more and more things so we figured we were on the right path. But the street we were following went up and over another street and the sidewalk ended and there was no way we could walk along the side of the road because people drive crazy here. We found this tiny trail that went into these trees and decided it was better to take it. We  followed the path through all this tall grass it was basically like walking through a jungle. At the end of the path a big fence blocked us from getting to the other side but we knew her house was on the other side so we jumped the fence. When we got on the other side we just managed to time it perfectly so that a big group of like 20 people got to watch two crazy Americans in white shirts and ties hop a fence that led to this jungle thing. We got some weird looks. But at least we finally found the hermanas house and we were only an hour an a half late! 

This week I must have gotten some bad food because I was sick for a good 4 days. And being a sick missionary is just awful! Walking around in the hot sun all day when you aren't feeling good just isn't pleasant for some reason but luckily that only lasted for a few days and I'm better now! 

Sunday was a pretty rough day. I woke up to Elder Robinson telling me that I was supposed to speak in church this morning I don't think Ive ever woke up so fast in my life! I jumped up and tried to put something together before we had to leave at 9. When I finally finished most of my talk we left to go pick up Maria Guadalupe. The night before we talked with her about the importance of prophets and talked about Joseph Smith. We showed up to her house and she told us that she just wants to stick to her catholic background. That was like a punch to the gut. After 8 weeks of teaching her it was hard seeing her turn away from the gospel. Were planning on talking to her tomorrow to see whats going on but who knows. Then I had to go to the church and give my talk that I was crazy nervous about. Luckily because the bishopric was being changed they all gave their testimonies so there wasn't time for me to speak. I was kind enough to tell them that I didn't mind too much that I didn't get to give my life changing talk. But the rest of the day was just kinda blue. But things are better now! 

Elder Ahlmer

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Birthday Mom

Mom!!

Happy, happy, happy, happy, birthday!!!!  I wish so much I could be there to give you one giant hug, but when Im back, I'll just make sure and give you one twice as big!  I honestly could never be more blessed than having a mom as amazing as you!  To put it simply you taught me right.  I know that I would be nowhere near the person I am now without you!  I'm so glad that we are so close and you always put up with my selfish self!  I'll never forget at night coming home and no matter what time it was you were always willing to put up with all my silly stories that were soooo important back then!  I'm so glad that things are going so well at home tell Sam and Savannah.  I'm so proud of them for swimming!  I'm going to come back to house of swimmers!  I'm about ready to fill up the church font and try and swim a little bit!  Congrats on being a half grandma!!  Did you know that Greg Greenwood is going to be baptized!!  I cant believe it!  I love you so much and cant believe that I am blessed enough to have a mom like you!!
          Two years isn't that long, we can do this!
Love
Elder Ahlmer

Monday, October 14, 2013

The Two Gingers!

The two Gingers in all of Mexicooo
Just Like Home...
Nacho Libre Cart!

Maria, Blanka and the Temple


The teaching is coming along well! One day I just kinda told myself to get over the fact that I cant speak perfect yet that I wont ever get perfect if I don't try and so I talked! And it made teaching so much easier!
As for baptisms, We have two investigators that are probably going to be baptized hopefully by the end of this change! Maria Guatilupe is one of our investigators. Her 16 year old son was baptized like two years ago but now is having problems with drugs and stuff so were trying to help them out. And another named Blanka Neli. She has been progressing really well but the only problem is she left for Texas for a couple weeks because she had to deal with some papers because her husband died there. But when she gets back she still has to attend church another 4 times!
This Wednesday in the temple was honestly the most spiritual experience in my life. Ive never felt so amazing. It was pretty much impossible to leave the room. With that one feeling that I had in the celestial room instantly every single doubt, question or anything like that instantly melted away. I know that this church is the only church that has the authority to help others return to live with God and their families again. I hope that I get the opportunity to walk through with an Investigator once day!
I love you all like crazy!
Elder Ahlmer

Head Rubbing


Hey everyone!   
So this past few days have been pretty interesting. This wednesday I got my first haircut in Mexico and I was pretty nervous because if someone wants to cut hair here basically all they have to do is write Astetica on the door. It wasn't too bad though! My hair has never been as short as it is right now but where it's so hot here I really don't mind too much!

I thought I would just add that the guy next to me is basically singing at the top of his lungs some song in spanish. Different culture.
 
They have some really weird traditions here. And people here like believe them to be 100% fact. Whenever we leave someones house we always have to touch the head of the baby or it'll get a headache or sick. And even sometimes they've told me that they need to touch my head before I leave or ill get sick. Thats always a pretty awkward because they don't just pat your head and your done it takes a good half a minute per person. That may not seem like to long but you try having some old lady that you've never really talked to much start feeling your head for that long. Its weird! On Friday we met this old woman named Lucia and we spent a good 15 minutes talking to her about what we believe in when she like suddenly stopped my companion from talking and asked if she could feel my arm. She did and then asked me if I was sick or something. Nope just crazy white. I don't think she was all that interested in our message...
 
Our investigators are moving along. We just have to wait till they attend church 5 times before they can be baptized. It kinda sucks because one of our investigators went to Texas for a couple of weeks. We gave her the address to a church there but who knows if she's going to go. I hope so. It's amazing hearing all these stories of these peoples lives that I talk to. You truly can learn something form everyone you talk to.
 
I hope all is well,
 
Elder Ahlmer

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Güero Companion

This week has been so awesome! Tuesday I went to the offices to receive some training and I got to see some of the missionaries that were with me in the MTC. It was awesome getting to share experiences and talk about how we are adjusting to missionary life. My Spanish has been really improving Im starting to not have to concentrate so hard on translating and starting to just understand. 


Some of the best things about a guero companionship is that we never run out of people to talk to us but also we never really know for sure if people just want to talk with us because were white or if they really are interested in the gospel. And even though me and my companion are both white whenever we ask someone to pick who they want to say the prayer they always say the guero.... Yeah even I guess I'm so white that Im starting to make my comp look Mexican. So many people here are clowns! Their everywhere! I don't know who came up with clowns being a fun thing for kids birthdays but its just wrong!

Mexico makes everything 6 feet tall. And because I'm just over 6 feet my head gets to meet quite a few door frames, roofs, and swamp coolers. I probably hit my head a good three times a day. I've got a permanent goose egg and it grows more and more each day. I need to learn to duck. 

I hope you all watched conference! If you think watching 4 hours of conference in english is hard you should really try spanish. It was pretty awful! I knew most of what they were saying but it just wasn't the same when they didn't have the same voices and their mouths were out of sync. Luckily for the Sunday sessions I got to watch it in English! 

Today we got to go to the temple. I was a little nervous because it was all in Spanish but it was awesome. I never wanted to leave! It's so peaceful and relaxing. I hope that sometime during my mission I'll be able to go through with someone for the first time.

Elder Ahlmer


Dad,

This week was absolutely amazing! Read the talk the fourth missionary. I read it and set goals of who I am going to become. It has literally changed the way that I think about everything. I am going to do everything that I can to become the fourth missionary. I am going to the temple today and feeling the love of God. I know that God wants and know the very best for us and once I know that the only logical thing to do is completely submit myself to his will. I know its going to be hard and not everything will go perfectly but I'll tell you this from now on I truly am completely 100% dedicated to him. Thank you so much for you're amazing example that you have set for me. I can't tell you enough how much it helps to know that you've done this and how much it has helped you.

Dad watching priesthood on Saturday made me miss you so much. All of those times that you basically forced me to go. And the time you sneaked us into that priesthood session without tickets, I wouldn't trade those memories for anything. One of my biggest regrets so far is the night before I left when you came into the room and tried to talk with me but I just couldn't stay awake. I wish so badly that I could go back to that time and slap myself awake! 

I love you like crazy!!
Elder Ahlmer

Monday, September 30, 2013

Hot Hot Hot


This week was so hot! I guess I wasnt counting my blessings when it was raining because without the rain everything is 10 times hotter! We didnt even try and connect our hot water heater because we took cold showers anyways! I guess its tradition here that whenever its crazy hot outside they decide to serve us the spicest food! I made it three weeks avoiding eating anything even a little spicy but this week just about every meal my tongue was on fire! During one of our meals my companion threw up because it was so hot.... That was pretty interesting. 

Turns out we have an area pet! We have a little lizard that lives in our starewell and sometimes we see him if we are lucky! Hes probably a good 4 inces long we havent gave him a name yet but well get on it. 

They just changed the rule that investigatorns now need to attend church 5 times before they can be baptized before it was just 2. It hasnt really made a difference for me because they changed it the second day I was here but it been weird for my companion to adjust to. But we have some amazing investigators. This week 6 of them have committed to baptism either on the 14th of october or the 20th depending on how many weeks they have attended church. Im so ecxited for them. One of our investigators Maria Guadilupe has been sharing the gospel to her friends and family! Its been awesome because sometimes she will come along with us to lessons with her friends and she ends up teaching her friend and testifying to her! Sometimes I wonder if Im the missionary or if she is. 

My comanions name is Elder Robinson. Hes a pretty cool guy and we get along most of the time but sometimes things can get a little heated. We didnt live the same kind of lives back home so our personalities kinda clash a bit but we get over it pretty fast and move on. Hes from Ceder City and has been out for 10 months now. 

Today my comanion left with another missionary that came in the same time as him to Immigration to fugure out some Visa stuff so today has been my first day with a companion that speaks absolutly no english.I was so nervous that I woudl just be lost all day but honestly it has boosted my confidence so much. If I dont know a word I know enough Spanish for him to be able to explain what it is and he can at least understand what I say back to him. 

I hope all is going well in the States!
Love 
Elder Ahlmer

Monday, September 23, 2013

Companions

Elder Ahlmer is serving in a town 20 miles south of Texas border called Morelos Mexico.  The area is Hidalgo B.  Check out the Map on the side, select full screen.

Elder Ahlmer at the Mission Home with the crew from the MTC.

Elder Ahlmer and his companion, Elder Robinson


Elder Robinson with his wet feet and dye from his shoes.  26 days of rain here...


Elder Ahlmer on a split with Elder Rodrigez.  Attached by hand cuffs called "Esposas" which is Spanish for "Wife"!  Makes sense!



Month 2 Done - What time is your name?

Hey everyone!

First off sorry I didn't write last week it was the 16th of September which is independence day here so everything was closed!

I guess tomorrow is my two month mark out on my mission and today is three weeks in Mexico. These past two weeks have been so much better! I can understand everything and I've gotten over my fear of speaking to people! Let me tell ya when you understand what people are saying and can actually respond its so much better!! 

My area is called Hidalgo B. I like it a lot, there is just quite a few differences between here and the states! Like first off the police. The police here drive around in trucks all painted in camo and theres like 4 or 5 sitting in the back all in full SWAT gear carrying fully automatic assault rifles. So basically every time they drive past me I try not to feel like they'll hit a bump and accidentally shoot me. We ate at a members house that is one of the police officers and found out that in spanish handcuffs are called esposas or in English wife!! That basically made my day. Another thing are the taxis they have little green death defying taxis here. Whenever Im in one my knuckles are basically white the whole time. They weave in between semi trucks like they were born doing it. After taking a taxi anywhere I don't feel so bad about walking anymore. Yesterday was the first day that I didn't rain here. That is 26 days of straight rain! I never thought that I would ever love an umbrella but that thing has a special place in my heart. 

Among some of the biggest attractions here is the Bull fighting arena and the Tigers Stadium. Everyone here is either a die hard tiger fan or a die hard rayados fan. Its a little scary when you see someone wearing a tiger jersey and someone wearing a rayados jersey walk past each other on the street. As for me I try to keep my distance. Because me and my companion are both so white, people are always shouting out English at us as they drive by or walk past us. One of our favorite things to hear is What time is your name? I usually tell them about 2:45 but it depends on the day. They love calling us guero or white kid so we get that quite often. 

Luckily here people dont eat too much hot food but I make sure and ask before every meal. Whenever they ask why I tell them that when I eat hot food my hair catches fire and thats why its red. I havent had any food so far that I havent liked. Just lots and lots of tortillas! They literally give them to us every meal and a lot of the time I dont even know how Im supposed to eat them with the food! 

Some people are wondering if Im still sleepwalking and yes yes I am. Just about every night. And its getting worse and worse. Last night I woke my companion up and told him in Spanish that we were late to a lesson. He asked me if I was sleep walking and I told him na man this is for real Its time to preach the gospel. Luckily my comp is patient with me but I need to get this under control! 

We got a boiler today! No more cold water! It came just in time for winter so basically 1 times better than Christmas, But now that I say that Ill probably end up being transferred to a place that doesnt have hot water just before Christmas. 

This Thursday I went on divisions with Elder Wells. He is a redhead as well. So probably the only two red hair people in Mexico were companions for a day. If I thought I stuck out before you wouldn't believe how much we stuck out Thursday! It was really nice to have a break from my companion for a day.

On Wednesday we played basketball with all the young men and ONLY in Mexico would I be the star player! They were all asking me if Im going to play in college and stuff when I get back..... I may have stretched the truth and told them that Im probably playing for the Jazz when I get home. I just left out the whole Junior part. 

Love, 
Elder Ahlmer

Monday, September 9, 2013

Am I in Mexico?

Hey everyone!

So this week was my first week in Mexico. It has been crazy! I stick out like a sore thumb here! I mean missionaries get enough attention as is walking around in a white shirt and tie with slacks in 95+ degree weather; but add on crazy white skin, red hair, and speak English here, and you might as well be a marshan! people stare me down like no other! Living here for a week has helped me appreciate how clean the States are! The whole city is just covered in trash. Its pretty sad because the mountains here are way cool! It has rained everyday I have been here so far and when it rains here its not like Utah, when it rains here it really pours! All the streets flood and its impossible to get anywhere!

The food here is actually really good but the eating schedules are different. We have a small breakfast at 7 every morning then we have our big meal or La Comida at 2 in the afternoon. The church set up a system for members to feed us la comida every day which is really nice because we don't exactly have any time to cook! And then we don't eat dinner until around 9 to 10. So basically I'm hungry 24/7. They have the Trix cereal here has the shapes like they used to! I didn't think that they made them like that anymore! Maybe they don't and the cereal that they sell here is just really expired..... Well either way it tastes better here!

My companions name is Elder Robinson and yeah hes white..... I guess I lied about only having native companions! Hes pretty cool and its nice that he can speak English or I don't know what I would do! Maybe I should clear up some things that I thought I knew before I came here. No I guess I wont have all native companions. I haven't been chased by any dogs theres quite a few dogs here but not so many strays and they're all either Chihuahuas or pit bulls! Theres no in between!

The the day I arrived here in Mexico I was sure of one of three things either, they didn't teach me Spanish at the MTC, they don't speak Spanish in Mexico, or I'm not in Mexico! I was so lost the first few days here! They talk like their mouths are all on fire! All I could do was smile and nod! I don't know what I was expecting when I came here but they speak Spanish and nothing else! I guess I was thinking that I would give my lessons in Spanish but the rest of everything would be in English! I'm still waiting for at some random moment everyone in Mexico to all start laughing and start speaking English. I hope it comes soon!

Elder Robinson and I opened a new area this week and its been pretty interesting. We had no information on anything! No idea where the church was, when it starts, no idea about anything! So we started from scratch. The first day was basically all contacing and sharing a quick message about what we believe in. Well Elder Robinson did I just smiled and nodded. But now we have three investigators that seem pretty interested! Two of the families came to church yesterday. That made me feel like what were doing here is actually helping people.

I had to give my first talk in Spanish yesterday. If you guys thought I was nervous for my farewell you have no idea what I looked like for this talk! I considered running out the door but I figured that wouldn't leave the best impression to the ward and investigators.

Well that's the update I hope all is well!

Elder Ahlmer