Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Pics from this week

Train ride 2 concilio 

Me n some nice old Spanish guy talking on the painted stairs

My boi elder Trassierra!! 

Kalifa and Ben! 

The greatest invention of all time... freshly squeezed orange juice machine!
Over priced but sooooo worth it. I'm getting one of these in my
house when I get home. 

My comps name is actually woody and I'm Andy. 

Richard! What the hecks gotten into you?

Hello from Lion Chavales,

How we doing? This past week it was FREEZING in León. It really made me miss Ferrol and being able to see the ocean every day. And also this past week, I realized just how Spanish that León and Valladolid are. I am definitely serving in the greatest place in the whole mission :) Galicia was a different experience and super fun but nothing compares to giant cathedrals and cobble stone roads everywhere you go! Needless to say, I'm having a blast! My companion is kinda cool too... ;) we have been getting along so great. I love elder kiser. Earlier today we saw 2 super old Spanish dudes walking on the sidewalk with canes and we turned to each other and said "that'll be us one day!" Hahaha but things are great here. And here's why!

So the branch is tiny. We maybe had 30 people on Sunday. It's kinda struggling, but it's got a lot of potential. I'm very excited to see what we can get done here! As far as investigators go, we have a couple people that we are working with that have lots of potential. One lady named Narcisa who just lost her job and now has all the time in the world to meet up with us! Another lady named Elisa who just had a super powerful eye surgery but is now recovering well and has more time to meet :) we've been hitting the streets hard and getting to know lots of new people. I'm confident that we will see miracles and the Lord will guide us to the elect!! León mola :) 

On Monday we had intercambios with the AP's and that was a blast haha. Yesterday we had concilio in Madrid at President and Hermana Pack's house. It's a big meeting where all the leaders get together and talk about changes that we want to make in the mission. They showed us the new Easter video which was soooo beautiful. Prince of Peace. Go watch it on Friday, I'm pretty sure that's when it comes out. But we spent the majority of the time talking about how we can better work with members and learning how to open our mouths and speak with everyone, no matter what the circumstances may be. The spirit was definitely present at the meeting. I'm so grateful for a stud mission president who loves us so much and helps us achieve our missionary purpose!! I just love being a missionary and that's all there is to it. 

I finished the Book of Mormon this week in my studies again :) I love that book and all the principles it teaches. I kneeled down after finishing and did what Moroni asks us to do in chapter 10. As I was praying, I felt the spirit so strongly testify to me that the book is true and we can become closer to our Savior Jesus Christ when we abide by its teachings. I'm grateful the the impact that it has had in my life and I will share it until the day I die!! I can't wait to start it up again and learn something new! 

With General Conference coming up this weekend, I hope that we can all tune out the distractions of the world and tune in to the messages of our prophet and his apostles. I am very excited and have lots of questions that I hope will get answers! I am grateful for a living prophet who leads and guides the church today. Jesus lives. Heavenly Father loves us all. The Book of Mormon is the word of God. The church is true. Soooooooooo true. 

This next week we have more intercambios coming up and a zone conference up in Oviedo! I'm not sure when I'll write again but don't worry about me :) I'm having the time of my life. I love you all and wish you the best this week!! Be safe and know that elder smitherzzzz loves you!!

Con amor,

Elder braids 

Monday, March 20, 2017

Pics from this week

Mamá Reyes and Ruth! I'm gonna miss them :(

Raúl Sr., Yaniet, and Raúl Jr. at their baptism!!!

The whole Alfonso Family together! One of the sons served with
Elder Smedley in Texas!

My favorite little Cubans :)

Last noche de hogar with the jóvenes

Let the chaos begin 😈 gonna be a fun transfer

Last fútbol session with my homies :)

Yasiel Puig and bradyx2 and ferrolin'

Dearest family n homies,

This email will not even come close to describing how happy i am right
now. Words don't describe stuff like this haha. I AM SO SO SO SO SO
later but just know that things are great and I'm loving every second.
This week was definitely one of the best of my mission :)

First and foremost, the Cuban fam was baptized and confirmed this
weekend!!! We had so much support from the branch and it was a
beautiful baptism! I was asking them how they felt after they had
changed their clothes and the mom was smiling ear to ear and said "I'm
Clean!" Haha it was so awesome! And the dad and son just kept saying
"that was so special" ha so I guess you could say it was a great day
:) then on Sunday they were confirmed and had us over to eat yesterday
after church! I still vividly remember receiving their reference and
being told by the member and branch president to go visit them and now
they are members and inviting the elders over to eat!! It was a very
tender weekend for them and me, and they are some of the most amazing
people I have ever met!! This is just the beginning though and they
are excited to keep moving forward :)

2 of the missionaries who were serving from the branch got home this
week from the Utah SLC South mission and Texas Houston South mission.
They are insanely good kids and I know just by the way that they act
that they were incredible missionaries. They hadn't even been released
yet and they already received callings in the branch! They are going
to help the missionary work in Ferrol grow so much and things are
going to get crazy good with their help. It was fun to see and
interact with them and see them try and make the mission life to home
life transition. Crazy to think that pretty soon that'll be me.... I
don't like to think about that hahaha.

We had intercambios this week with the Coruña elders and they were so
much fun! I went with my boy elder Scott and we had a blast. We met
some of the coolest people in the street and got their references and
they have already started to teach them! I love Coruña so much 😩 if I

had to describe it I would say it's like Madrid with ocean and no
metro. And the people are sooooooo receptive there. It's a great place
to serve and see the Lord work miracles!! I love Galicia so much....
I'd definitely consider living there when I'm an old retired
millionaire ;)

Now on to the crazy stuff.... remember how I said transfers were this
week? Well on Saturday morning when my alarm went off, my head popped
off my pillow and I had 3 ideal situations run through my head. They
were 1. Stay in Ferrol cuz I love it there 2. Get sent to the islands
and finish my mission there 3. Get sent to León with my boy elder
kiser and tear it up together. So later that morning, I see the phone
ringing and it's a call from president. Situation #3 pops back in my
head and I answer the phone, and then President tells me I'm going to
León with the one and only... elder BRADY kiser!!! Hahaha I was
flipping out sooooooo hard!! I couldn't contain the adrenaline and
burst of happiness! Dreams really do come true! I've always wanted to
serve in León (since my first transfer in the field) and now I get to
do it with my best friend as a companion!! Hahaha we are seriously
sooooo excited it's not even funny. Hugging him this morning after I
got off my 6 hour train ride was like the greatest thing known to
womankind. So, stay tuned for more info on what's about to go down in
León 🦁

I am really going to miss Ferrol. I can honestly say I gave it
everything that I had and I know that the Lord is proud of the work
that I accomplished there. It's such a good feeling to look back and
see all the progress that you have made :) I love the members, city,
our converts, and the overall Galicia experience! It's been a very
quick 2 transfers but I learned a lot. I'm excited to get going in
León and have some cool stories to share la próxima semana :) the
church is true, the book is blue, and I'm about to party with
boo(kiser). i love you all, thanks for the support and keep being
wonderful. Peace. 🦁

Con amor y un besiño,
Elder b.c. Smith

1. Last fútbol session with my homies :)
2. Mamá Reyes and Ruth! I'm gonna miss them :(
3. Raúl Sr., Yaniet, and Raúl Jr. at their baptism!!!
4. The whole Alfonso Family together! One of the sons served with
Elder Smedley in Texas!
5. My favorite little Cubans :)
6. Last noche de hogar with the jóvenes
7. Let the chaos begin 😈 gonna be a fun transfer

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Pics from this week

Hermana Pack gave me the best cookie I've had on my mission this week :) 

Giant pink piso complex... hahaha pink?!?! 

Galician Glass ft. Sunset 
We asked some gypsies to take our picture 

Gallego is a way of life


How we doing?! :) it's good to be back writing the people I love the most :) I'm very much looking forward to telling you all about my experiences in person rather than having to type them up every week haha. At the end of every Monday my thumbs want to fall off from being so sore. I have to ice them before I go to bed! But I'm swell just in case you were wondering :) here's the review.

Tuesday we had interviews with president. I. Love. President. He is one of the people that I most look up to and respect on the whole earth. He knows so much about the gospel and seems to find the perfect balance in life. That's definitely something I want to get when I am at his point in life. We chatted for a solid little while about mission life and the struggles and worries that I had and then he gave me some great counsel. We finished up the interview talking about march madness and how the seeding was looking for conference tourneys. Needless to say, it was a great uplifting experience :) as we were walking out of the room he told me how excited he was to meet my future wife and kids. I was pretty happy and told him I was excited to meet them too haha! It was so good getting to talk with him :)

The Cuban Family passed their interview last Saturday so they will be baptized this week!! I still remember the first time going to their teach them and now to think that they are entering the waters of baptism is just so awesome! We have a lesson with them tonight and we're gonna get the program all figured out and the clothing situation too. During the dad's interview, he started to cry as he talked about his family and how bad he wants to be with them for the rest of his life! I always kinda considered the dad a little bit rougher around the edges but this just proved that he does have a soft spot like everyone else and the gospel is changing him! Just a little bit more about the family... they are 5 people in total and 3 of them will be baptized. They are the parents (Raúl and Yaniet) and then the oldest son (Raúl Jr.) who is 14. The other little kids are Leandro and Lorena who are 4 and 2. They moved from Cuba about a year and a half ago (just like me) and have been in Ferrol the whole time. They have plans to go back and visit their family this summer but I think they are set on living here :) the branch has been treating them well. They already feel like part of the family! We are very excited for this weekend and there will be pictures to come next week :) 

We have also started teaching a man named Javier. He is Spanish and is very interested in our message but isn't sure if God really exists. I like him a lot because he is willing to read the Book of Mormon and pray to God to see if it's true. It's hard to find Spaniards that will actually follow through with their commitments! We have had a couple really solid lessons with him and poco a poco we are helping him learn more and put aside his doubts and develop more faith. Hopefully things keep going well with him! We have also been teaching a lady named Carina from Colombia and she is super awesome too. She said she would be baptized when she knows that this is the true church and she too has been reading the Book of Mormon and praying to see if it's right for her. In the last lesson we had with her, she invited her cousin Jessica over too so we were able to talk to her about her beliefs and she loved the plan of salvation! So hopefully we can keep on finding cool new people to investigate the church :) it's a good time to be a missionary in El Ferrol :) 

We have officially started the last week of the transfer, so we'll see if there are any changes headed our way this Saturday! I'm really enjoying my time with Elder Lowder. We get along great and he is like a long lost high school friend haha! He's a bit timid but he has good intentions and he's taught me a lot. Whether i stay in Ferrol a bit longer or get booted out, I'm so grateful for all the people who have helped me in my time up here! I love the north so much it's not even funny ️ 

Hope you all have a great week, more to come the next 😎 keep it real 💯

Con amor,
elder smit master flex (that's for jed)

Monday, March 6, 2017

Pics from this week

Our hike today :)

Saying adios to Robert!

Dog pile with the young men!! 

Schrute farms beets BOiZ 

Eucalyptus trees for days 

Pano of the lookout! 

Live from La Cusqueña!

Здравствуйте :')

We've had a nice week 😜 it was good to be back in Ferrol without too many distractions and get to work. The rain has been falling like gatos and perros out here!! Gotta love Galicia :) there have been some good moments since the last time we talked, so I'll try to share them briefly! 

Robert is gone! He left to Pamplona to visit family last Friday morning. It was really sad saying goodbye to him but I'm glad he lives so close so we can hang out when I get back! We got him a little going away present and a tie and a note and when he was opening it up and reading the letter, he started to cry and it was the sweetest thing of all time. He's such a good man and I love him. We already have plans for when I get back... they include a big BBQ, hitting the lake for some water skiing, and a Utah vs. Arizona PAC-12 football game!! So even though our time in Spain together is over, we've still got a lot to look forward to when we get home :) 

The Cuban FamBam is doing great! They'll be having their baptismal interviews this Saturday! When we visited them last week, we did a special lesson just on 1 Nefi 8 and the tree of life. I felt like I was teaching life long members, like seriously they knew what everything represented and had a perfect understanding of the importance of holding to the iron rod! They should have taught us! One funny thing did happen during the lesson though... I had some peach rings in my bag that my mom had sent me and they have 2 little kids, one is a 4 year old boy named Leandro and the other is the cutest 2 year old girl named Lorena. Anyways, they were being a little rowdy (typical little kids) and so I pull out the peach rings and give them some in hopes to calm them down and then Leandro just blurts out "Mmhmm...Qué Rico!" Haha it was the funniest thing of all time. Then I showed him the picture of the tree of life and related the peach ring to the fruit on the tree and told him that the white fruit was even tastier than the peach rings and he goes "mamá! Papá! Quiero probar del fruto blanco!" 🙃🍑😏 then the dad was like "how about we all try it together?" YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES YES BINGOOOOOOO :) it was one of the sweetest teaching moments of my mission. It was too good not to share with all of you! We're happy with them and all the progress they've made! 

Other than that, things are going pretty good. We had a bunch of other lessons this week but nothing too crazy. We have been hitting the streets hard with contacting and lots of door knocking. It is tough but I love it. Eventually we'll find the people that the Lord has prepared :) as for p-day today, we took a nice little hike up to a cool look out point that is like 30 minutes out of Ferrol called "Mirador de Ancos" and it was really pretty! Always nice to enjoy a little bit of the Spanish naturaleza :) 

well, that's all I got! Short and sweet! I love you all, enjoy march madness and have a Zippity-Doo-Dah Day :) 

Con amor,
Elder Smith