Monday, July 17, 2017

Reassurances



Dear Mom, 



I'm sorry that you were a little startled by the photo of me standing at the bottom of a well. Startling you was not my intention. I don't want you to be too concerned for my safety or well being as far as me being here in my mission goes. I know that I'm going to be safe here as long as I do my part. 

I don't want you to be too concerned. What I was doing in the well was helping make it deeper. I mostly was removing rocks from the well. It was a service project we did with our old district leader. My companion is now the district leader of our district. I will make sure to be more careful in the future. 





Mom, don't apologize for your email being long. I enjoy reading it and getting a better look at the what life is like over there in Houston. I hope the pictures do a good job of showing what life is like here for me. I know that I don't do a very good job of explaining in detail my day to day experiences, but I hope the pictures help paint the picture. I forgot to send some of these pictures to Dad so I will send them to you right now. I love you,  Mom and I hope you have a good week. In the latest photos,  I'm with my companion in the street, and at a birthday party for the bishop of our ward. The other pictures are of my room. 




I love you, Mom, and miss you everyday. 

Love,
Elder McMurray ​

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Baptisms



Dear Dad, 



Wayne Rooney returning to Everton is an interesting move. I hope he has success at Goodison Park. It would be a nice story if he finished out his career with the club where he made a name for himself, as long as he has success. As for the Astros, I'm disappointed that I'm missing out on the action. I really enjoyed going to one of their games last year with my friend Son. We will have to go to a game when I get back. Hopefully they keep the success up until then, but even if they don't,  I would still want to go. 



I feel like I'm struggling with Spanish -- not so much understanding it, but speaking it. I can't roll my rr's and I just have trouble remembering all the conjugations. At first it was like,  "I've only been out 5 months or 6 months so the mistakes are understandable," but I have 8 months now,  almost 9. I can't really make anymore mistakes, at least I shouldn't make them anymore. I'm determined to work harder at it, though. 


My companion got called to be district leader (we didn't end of having changes so we are still companions in the same area). He went to a special meeting for leaders in the mission. There, our mission president talked a little bit from a doctrinal perspective. He apparently taught that every single person in the world has the ability to become exalted, to become like our Heavenly Parents.  I forget that, sometimes.



Mom wanted me to talk a little bit about the pictures I sent over the last couple of weeks. In the picture where I have a container of ice cream on my head I'm with Elder Gutierrez. He was never my companion, but we served in the same ward together for four and a half months and he is a good friend. In the photos of the man's baptism, I'm with Elder Palomino, my former companion. In the other baptism photo, I'm with Elder Carrasco, my current companion. In the photo where I'm wearing a suit, I'm attending a zone conference. In the foto where I'm not wearing a suit but I'm with a group of missionaries, I'm with my district. In the photo where I'm in KFC? That was a Preparation Day activity we had as a district. I think there was also a foto of me with Elder Manuyama, my second companion. 

I know that is not a lot of detail, but I don't have that much time to go into more depth. These pictures are of this past weekend. We had three baptisms. The couple is Jhonathan and Fiorela, a couple we helped get married. The youth is the granddaughter of a active member who is living with her grandmother. Her grandfather baptized her. 





I hope you have an excellent week. I love you and miss you. 



Love,
Elder McMurray 

Dad's Note:

One of the unusual things about LDS missionary service these days is that lots of missionaries' parents keep blogs, so occasionally, photos of your child show up on someone else's site.  Below are some photos I came across online, taken by a sister missionary serving in Elder McMurray's zone.  His presence in these photos is fleeting, but when it's been nine months since you've seen your kid fate-to-face, you take what you can get: 








 

Monday, July 3, 2017

More Photos

Hi, Mom!


As for things here, they are pretty much the same. We had a zone conference with our mission president which was really good. He is trying to help us teach conversion to our investigators, or help them recognize the converting power in the Spirit, help them recognize the truths of our message. We did practices with real investigators and it was really good. It was a great way to learn and improve. We have transfers tomorrow. I doubt I will be going anywhere since I am new to the area. It is possible that my companion will go, but I don't think that will happen either. We will get the call in the night time if any of us has a transfer, but we will have to wait and see.
Other than that there isn't much news to share, unfortunately. The week was not super eventful. I keep a pretty good record of what goes on in my journal, so we will always have the chance to go back and have a day for day account of what happened during my mission.
One thing, though. My companion broke his camera and has asked me to ask you if you could buy a camera and send it with the package you are sending for my birthday. He says he will pay me the equivalent price in soles, but says that the cameras in the US cost less and are better quality. I said I would I ask you but ultimately the decision isnt mine and that there are no promises.
I love you, Mom. I am thankful that you got home safely from your trip to Wyoming and that everything is going pretty good right about now. I miss you very much and am so grateful to hear from you every week. I hope this week is an excellent one.
Love,
Elder McMurray