Monday, August 31, 2015

Zach's Mission President

Bruno Emilio Vásquez Robles, 50, and Brenda Elizabeth López de Vásquez, four children, Sonora Ward, Amatitlán Guatemala Stake: El Salvador San Salvador East Mission, succeeding President David L. Glazier and Sister Beverly B. Glazier. Brother Vásquez serves as a branch president and is a former stake president, counselor in a stake presidency, bishop and branch president. Employment resource center manager, Corporation of the Presiding Bishop. Born in Guatemala to Bruno Vásquez de Leon and Maria del Rosario Robles de Vásquez.

Sister Vásquez is a former ward Young Women president, ward Primary president, seminary and institute teacher and temple ordinance worker. Born in Guatemala to Francisco Roberto López Rubio and Rosalia Manzanero Castillo de López.

Zach's Mission President has an "I'm a Mormon video.  See it here.

A Day of Firsts

Hi everyone! Wow! This has been quite a week!

Tuesday was a pretty normal day. A member of the ward died- he was old and sick- they had a viewing that night. Elder Wallace and I stopped by, we were talking to the family and got asked to help dress the body for burial. We were both a little taken aback, but said yes. I think they could tell that we didn't want to because we didn't end up helping.

Wednesday. Our zone went to the temple in San Salvador that day. E. Wallace and I got a little lost. missed some bus stops etc. And missed the session. We waited in the waiting room for an hour or so. It was still a spiritual experience. We were a little bummed though.

Thursday. Thursday we went into San Salvador again. Immigration for me. We also had interviews with the president and his wife. I really like them! (I found out he was not a pro soccer player.) ( I did talk to a drunk guy who said he was! He also said his name was James Bond ....)

Friday. Friday was a day. We woke up at 4.00. We packed our entire zone of 25 people into a microbus to go to a fireside in San Salvador. A microbus has seats for 14 people (15 with a driver). It's smaller than a 15 passenger van, imagine an extended minivan. It was a wild ride! The fireside was at the chapel by the temple and all 3 El Salvador zones were there. The Guatemala missions also tuned in by internet. President Alonso and Ochoa spoke. And Russell M Nelson! I got to shake his hand! His talk was amazing! Of the 500,000 members in Central America 1/4 are inactive men who could hold the priesthood. He said half of our time should be spent with them. He also gave us 10 doctrinal topics. 'core curriculum' to study. It was a great day!

Saturday was a day of firsts. I had my first baptism! A girl named Lilliana, we reactivated her family and baptised her. The service was nice. I conducted the music. It was a little shakey for a bit while I tried to find hymns to sing while she was changing. I don't know Spanish hymns! I also saw my first street body! There's a street we walk on usually twice a day. One day it was roped of with police tape and a bunch of police guys were walking around. That was a little scary.

I got the pony express letters from the family reunion! Thanks everyone! They were awesome!
Have a great week!

[Kanani asked Zach some questions.  These are his answers]

1, Do you do your own cooking?
I make Cereal for breakfast. We eat lunch and dinner at a member's house. We also pay them.

2.  Which ward/s do you serve in?
Las Cañas ward.

3.  Where is the best place to send packages?
Mission Office. We don't have addresses.

4.  What kind of stores do they have there?  How close are they?
We have a supermarket just down the street. Pretty much the same as the U.S. The American brands are the same price. Central American brands are cheaper.

5.  Where do you go to get internet access?
The mall.

6. Do you boil your water or just use the water bottle filters?
We buy the blue 5 gallon jugs. AguaPura

7. Do you have people you are teaching?

-Elder Goodman

Monday, August 24, 2015

Ilopongo, El Salvador

Hi everyone! It´s been a crazy two weeks!  It flew by and lots happened! I´ll try to give some good details!

Last week at the CCM was awesome! We had some awesome speakers! It was hard saying goodbye to all my friends at the CCM. I knew pretty much everyone there- all the Nortes on my transfer at least. My companion left at 3 in the morning, he had a flight to Honduras. I had a six hour bus ride. The bus itself was very nice. But the road was awful. I got really carsick. 

President Vasquez and his wife are really nice! I really like them! President Vasquez´s house is really nice. Nicer than most American houses! Unfortunately I´m never seeing another house like that again. Houses here are not the same.

I am in the city of  Ilopongo. Pretty close to the capital. My house has running water. Kind of. We can´t drink it. And it only works about half the time. Other half is bucket showers. Nice thing  is that it´s so hot here that the cold water feels pretty good. It´s usually about 100  degrees until we turn on the fans. We can keep it at around 75-80. Which is really nice!

I take a shower at night after we get home, and I usually feel pretty good until around 12 when when leave. Then I just start sweating buckets. And stay soaked throughout the day. Nice thing is that everyone down here is also super hot. I just am wearing a tie.

I spoke yesterday during church! Kind of! The bishop asked my companion and the ward mission leader to speak. And I told him that I wanted to do something too. I bore my testimony. I thought my Spanish was good when I left the CCM. It ´s not. I´m learning though! My companion is a big help. His name is Elder Wallace. He´s from Boise. And he played lacrosse before the mission at BYU.  I really like him. Even if he walks really fast.

Hope you have a good week! Have fun at school!

-Elder Goodman

Wednesday, August 12, 2015

CCM Numero 6

Hola! I haven't gotten the letters yet- that makes me feel good that they got sent though! Tell Grace and Jacob congrats for me! That's exciting! Tell Jenny I'm sorry about her game. that stinks! Thanks so much for your testimony at the end- that was really powerful!

Pretty much just another average week here in Guatemala. I really like it here - but I'm excited to leave. The food here is amazing! Definitely going to be the part I miss most! I like to talk to the cooks and get the name of the meal, unfortunately I usually forget the name. My district switched Ramas this week, so my last p-day is on Wednesday. In church last Sunday my district did a musical number, I played the piano. The song was Mas Cerca Dios de Ti. I'll let you figure out what that means in English! It was very good.

Last night President Duncan, the area president over Central America, came and spoke to us. It was very very good! The Tuesday before we watched a live MTC broadcast from Provo. Elder Nelson and his wife spoke. President Cox told us to watch for people we knew on the screen, and I saw Jordan Mugerian. That was cool! We got another batch of missionaries on Wednesday. There's an Elder Nawahine from Oahu. He went to Kahuku! I really like him. This morning we went to the temple. The worker checking our recommends at the desk recognized my name. He was baptized by Elder Nicholas Goodman. From Arizona. I'll bet we're related somehow. My teacher also served with an Elder Goodman. Also from Arizona. Cool though!

My time is up, and it's time for lunch. Adios! Have a great week!
-Elder Goodman

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

CCM Numero 5

That's so cool about Rachel and Phil! Their nephew is Elder McGuire, and he's awesome! He's in my district and he got a similar letter about me. I think that's pretty cool!

This was a really fast week. Elder Falabella of the Seventy spoke to us- in Spanish- that was really cool. There's some weird sickness going around this week, stomach. 16 people were out of commission on Wednesday. The record for one day is 20. It was pretty gross in the bathroom. Elder Garry, my companion, got it really bad. He was out for 2 days, poor guy. I was the awkward floater companion that hung out with different companionships in my district all day. It was actually a pretty cool experience because I got to teach with two other companionships, I feel that I learned a lot from them.

I think I said something last week about all the ambulances around here, turns out there's a hospital down the street. I'm going to assume that's the reason there's so many sirens.

The highlight of the CCM experience is always the city tour. 4-5 hour bus ride all over, and then a stop at the Central market. Everyone get's really excited about it. It turns out that the presidential election here is next month- and the current president is really unpopular. Apparently there's been lots of protests and the tour got cancelled. We're having a volleyball tournament and pizza instead.
Sorry if this letter seems like a bunch of random thoughts and stories, but this week has gone by so fast that I'm having a hard time thinking of things to write about. I bore my testimony on Sunday, about families. Our Branch President brought his son to priesthood meeting. As I was watching them I had the thought ''This is what I'm here to do, I'm here to find families, and baptize them, and take them to the temple, so they can be together forever.'' That's what it's all about. I love you!