Monday, November 30, 2015

Hot Dog & Cactus Soup for Thanksgiving Dinner!

Moto Taxi (motorcycle taxi) - super sketchy, but so fun and cheap.
Zone Conference on Thanksgiving Day.
SO, I’m hopin’ that Turkey Day was baller (the best) for y’all.  Here ... well ... let’s just say I had to remind my whole zone that it was Thanksgiving. We were at zone conference and like no one remembered and I was like “whatttt, come on.”   I love Thanksgiving, but yes, this year I celebrated with hot dog and cactus mixed with other funky stuff in a soup. Go Us!

This week was baller -- it really was.  Monday we visited Xochimilco, which was super fun, but I already talked about that.  Tuesday we did service and prepped the church for our Christmas activity of decorating the outside with lights.  It was a blast!  Then Wednesday I was sick with a cold, fever thing.   Thursday was zone conference and I listened to all my leaders talk about changes in the mission and how to better our missionary efforts.  Friday was all day with the zone leaders in their area doing intercambios (exchanges) and I had a blast doing that.  Saturday we had an area attack in another area so we helped with that.  It’s like we send the whole zone to one area to visit all the inactives and help them return to the church.  Saturday night we had our small Christmas program and my district sang at that and then lit up the front of the church with Christmas lights--super fun!  And Sunday, church and another area attack in another area.  So, fun it has been!

We also found 8 new investigadores this week and have 3 with a baptismal date, so we will see how it goes. Things are slowly pickin’ up.  I love visiting with old friends.  This is the perfect time of year.  There’s a lot of love and a lot of food and good things getting done.

So the biggest and greatest news I’ve got is this ... I’M GOING TO THE TEMPLE ON SATURDAY!!!!!!!   Let me explain.  The whole ward is renting buses and going to the Temple visitor center which is awesome cuz all our investigators are going to go too, and it’s gonna be a party. But on top of that, I GOT PERMISSION TO GO AND DO BAPTISMS FOR THE DEAD WITH MY CONVERTS  REBECCA,  FERNANDA  AND SILVIA!!!!!  YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAAYY!   I am soooo happy!  This is the greatest early Christmas present I could ask for!  Love it! 

Anywho, that’s my week.   Work is good, the ward is good, my health is improving ... life is good. Hope FOCO (Fort Collins) is doing good, too.  Enjoy the cold while you have it--I’m sweating sooo bad right now.

President & Sister Mecham are bakers, by profession.  So, missionaries always get muffins!
Missionaries put up Christmas lights for a ward activity.

Monday, November 23, 2015


We went to Xochimico today with our old friends that are still in Ajusco. They have canals there and it's super famous and real pretty.  We bought carnitas for lunch and had a grand old time.
The Monday night STRESSFULLLLLLL district meeting!!  
Hello family and friends!

It is Monday, the 23rd of Noviembre and today is a very special day.  Let me explain:
So, if all goes well and I don’t get super sick or get diabetes or break my face or some other bone ... I will be returning home from my mission 1 YEAR from today—exactly one year, baby.  Crazzzzy.  That is not to say that I have been one year in the mission already, because I haven’t (he went out on Dec 10) -- but one year from today is my release date.  Let’s all hope I don’t go home any sooner than one year because I really don’t want any of those bad things, especially breaking my face. 

Ok, this week has been a week!   Lots of hard work and lots of walking and wow this Iztapalapa sun is a killer!  We worked hard finding 3 new investigators and had 2 that attended church--not bad!   There’s always room for improvement, but hey, I’m happy.   The craziest thing that happened last week was our district meeting last Monday night.   I was already nervous as it was having the meeting with my new district (6 of us in total, 4 elders and 2 sisters).   Sisters scare me and this is the first time I’ve had to work with sisters in the mission.  So I was stressed.   After preparing a good lesson I felt a little more confident but still, real nervous!  We arrived at the church and outside waiting for us were our 2 sisters standing and chatting with the zone leaders.  They also share our building so I was like huh, that’s nice. After a quick chat with them it came to my attention that they planned to also be in my district meeting! AHH, STRESS!!   Then a district leader and his comp from a neighboring area showed up saying their whole district was sick and so they were crashing my meeting!   AHH STRESS!!   So now there are 10 of us all in this district meeting.   AHH STRESS!   But then just as we all get seated and are about to start the meeting, President and Sister Mecham walk in.   AHHHHH STRESS!!!!!!   Sooo, long story short, my first district meeting in Jardines and I had half the zone and all my leaders all sittin’ there watching me like a hawk.   AHHH STRESS!   Thank goodness I planned a good meeting!   Wow, what a stressor.   Anywho, it was rough, but I’m glad it’s over with.   Now I can breathe.

All is well.  I’m much less stressed.  My district is cool and we have a ton of plans and activities planned this week including a zone conference on Thanksgiving!   What a blessing!   I’m just so thankful!   I’m so grateful for all the emails I got this week from people I haven’t heard from in almost a year and for my family that is just so awesome in supporting me while I work my bum-bum off in the heat of Mexico.  I’m so thankful for the chance to be back here in Jardines, and help rescue a few people that have drifted away in the past 5 months.   This truly is the work of the Lord and with that in mind, nothing is impossible.

Thank you all for the support.   You are in my prayers.   Keep rocking.

My old district.
My new district.

Monday, November 16, 2015

Wow, What a Wowzer Week - Deja Vu

November 16, 2015
Good-bye to a friend in Ajusco!

Hey all,

Wow, what a wowzer it has been.  Changes were the weirdest thing everrrr.  Let me explain:

With both my comp and I leaving we had to put all our luggage in our branch president’s car so he could drive us down the mountain and then we took the bus to where our mission offices are. Weird, but it was ok. Just one more scary ride down the mountain ... and like I’ve said ... these rides are WAY better that Six Flags or Disneyland.  So we get to the offices/chapel and get seated and all and just get ready for the opening song and prayer before Prez talks to us and then we all find out where we are going.  Then as all that happens he reads out, "And in Jardines, Iztapalapa, we have Elder McClure as District leader and his comp will be Elder Miller."  It was like a WHA HUH QUE?!¡?!   I’m going back to where I started my mission and already spent 6 months of my mission??????  But yep, that’s how it is folks.  I thought it was a joke, but it ain’t. 

So I’m STILL with my comp Elder Miller, I’m BACK in my old area, I’m REOPENING an area (which means we came to nothing) and there are SISTERS in my District!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  It’s been quite the stressor.  So we took 2 trips in a taxi getting all our stuff to Iztapalapa and our house was ransacked/trashed so we had fun cleaning all that up.  Iztapalapa is the most dangerous city in our mission, and they put sisters in the test run to see if they’ll be OK there because we are receiving tons of sisters and they don’t have anywhere to put them.  So they are trying it out here in my ward and I’m supposed to look out for them and show them around cuz supposedly I know the area--super crazy. 

It’s been a real stressor, but it’s been fun to see all my old converts! Everyone at church saw me and just started laughing ... cuz I’m back.  So really I don’t know.  It’s just been super, super crazy and I’m not sure how it’s all going to work out.  That's been my week -- crazyyyyyy.  The good news is that I was able to contact 2 old investigadors of mine and they both went to church yesterday!   Soooo, pretty awesome!  I love investigadors at church!

Also, yesterday at church was the Primary program for our ward!  Oh man, just have to throw in here how it made me miss my Primary class soooo much!  It was just about a year ago when I was able to be up on the stand with my class singing them great songs and just feeling like a kid again!  Primary programs are the BEST! 

But yeah, that’s about it.  Jardines again baby.  Here I go!

The Covenant Path (that leads back to God)
The Covenant Path (for all you  English speakers)

Monday, November 9, 2015

Farewell Ajusco!

November 9, 2015

My district . . . until tomorrow morning!
Note:  Gonna have to say sorry ... this computer won’t download pictures.  Don’t know why, the USB inlet must not be working.  Sorrrryyyyyyyyy

Hey guys, 

Wow.  Emotions are high.  Why is leaving an area so exciting but so sad at the same time?  To leave the hills and cows and sheep and grass ... my time here feels so short.  How can I go?  Really I am excited to see who my next comp will be and my new area and ward—back to the city.   But the more and more I think about it ... I’m gonna miss this Ajuscan place.  I love it here. The people are a little crazy, but hey, I’ve been told I’m a little crazy by a number of people myself--so what’s the difference.  I love Ajusco.  Don’t wanna go, but hey, the Lord’s in charge. I’m just his simple servant.

Ending this cambio (transfer) has been really fun.  The energy in the branch and the respect towards us missionaries has exploded.  We joke so much with the members.  They are now willing to work with us to visit our people.  They want to feed us every day.  It’s just great.  What a transformation I have seen here.  It’s not perfect ... but it’s good and I can work with good. 

My area is being whitewashed (all four missionaries are leaving Ajusco).  We don’t know why.  I don’t know why my son, Elder Miller, isn’t staying but maybe it’s because they are changing us out with sisters--who knows.  So tomorrow morning at 7:00 we make our journey for the last time down the mountains to cambios where we meet our new comps and go to our new areas.

My heart is full, really it is. Charity has played a huge part in my life recently--charity towards my comp, my district, the members, my investigators, my leaders.  It’s funny how it works.  It comes so naturally.  How lucky I am to be a missionary at this time. There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing. 

We’ve been having fun and working hard.  My comp got a gingerbread house from his parents and doesn’t have room to take it to his new area so we made it and have devoured many, many, many chocolates that his parents also sent him.  We cooked today with the other elders and we’ve sung a lot recently.  We are just doing so good.  My last district meeting tonight will be hard--many tears will be shed, many testimonies borne and a whole lot of manly missionary hugs. I’m going to miss Elder Jarrett and Elder Mayoral and Elder Miller so much.  What great guys!

All is wel l... just a little emotional.  For sure I’ll let you know where I’m at in a week from now with my new comp, and preachin’ the word in a new area. 

I love my mission.

Elder McClure

Monday, November 2, 2015

"Now, That's the Power of the Mission!"

November 2, 2015


Wow, I love me them weeks that keep flying and keep rocking!!!  So today our Mexican friend made us this weird dish that consists of ground beef that isn’t cooked with heat but cooked with lemon juice ... so pretty much I ate a bunch of lemon tasting raw meat.  It was nasty and so we were talking and laughing how we might end up back in the hospital and then we realized that we went to the hospital September 15, and now it’s NOVEMBER!  WOW, time flies!  But really I could end up back in the hospital ... the food was nasty.  Say an extra prayer for me, would ya?

So much has happened and I just love it all.  I can’t tell you how many ghost stories I’ve heard this week. Mexicans really are into their dreams and just weird stuff, especially with Day of the Dead and all.  Did you know their Halloween lasts 3 days?  Way too long in my opinion.  That’s 3 days of us running-from-drunk-guys too many.  One thing I’ve learned about little pueblos or little towns like Ajusco is that most people are very set in their ways.  It’s hard for them to change.  I don’t know why that is, but I’ve met some very hard to help people while being up here.  Nevertheless, I absolutely love it up here.  I can breathe and I can wake up in the morning and see sheep right outside my window and smell the fresh poop smell drifting through the cracked window.  Really life doesn’t get any better than this!

So that piƱata we had ... ya, we broke it.  We beat it silly and it was sooo much fun.  I have a 10 min. video of it that I’d love to send home, but videos don’t send ... sad stuff. 

We didn’t get to meet with our investigator this week and he didn’t come to church.  I’m pretty bummed, but there’s not a whole lot I can do.  I’ve done what I can.  Now it’s up to him. 
Oh, I totally needed new shower sandals ... sooo I totally got the sickest shoes for 9 bucks!!!  They are like Crocs, but better and super stylish.  I fit in here too well.   I’m pretty much Mexican. 
Anywho, that’s my week for ya.  Life’s going good--no real complaints, just happiness.  Now, that’s the power of the mission!

Sheep outside my window.
Eating raw meat with lemon juice.

My new sick shower shoes!