Elder Stockard

Elder Stockard
Mexico Cuidad Obregon Mission

Monday, December 28, 2015

December 28, 2015 - Week 27


Wow it feels weird to be here writing you guys cause just a few days ago it was like we were all back home together chopping it up in the living room! Haha like old times, it was honestly suchhhh a nice treat to be able to chat it up and share old memories, new stories and familiar laughs with each other as a family. It reminded me a lot of how rich of a blessing I have with you guys at home. 

So starting from my weekend, I guess I don't have as much to share this week with the skype call lol. We finished out the weekend really strong and we actually found a new family that I'm excited to teach. Well we actually were already teaching this lady, Carmen, but her husband came home from work in Monterrey and we taught them and their little daughter, Emily yesterday. I'm not sure if the husband will even be in town for more than a couple months, but it is always the best to teach families and be able to tell them about the blessings that God has planned for them.

We also taught a couple named Carla and Aldo this weekend. Carla's aunt is a recent-ish convert and she always helps us with teaching her. It's so nice because her niece can see her strong testimony and the blessing she's received in her life through the gospel. It was a little bit difficult to find some of the other common investigators this weekend with all the holidays, but hopefully this week will be different. 

So yesterday we showed up to Church and were told that we were going to have to give talks. I actually really like when that happens because it gives us a chance to talk to members and investigators at church. I shared some scriptures in 3 Nephi 9 right before Christ comes to America, then a story of Zeniff and his people trusting in the Lord to overcome the Lamanites. 

As far as this week I'm not sure how it will be with all the New Year's Eve and New Year's Day stuff. There are usually a lot of parties in Topo because its a really popular spot for people to gather. We will see how it all goes, but we'll keep going ahead no matter what. 

Well, I love you all and hope that your trip to Utah goes smoothly tomorrow. Super big congrats to Bryen Holloway on the Mexico mission call. Only the most righteous go to Mexico lol. Let me know about all my friends who get their calls!! I love you all and wish you all a great week. I'll be praying for you like always. 

Love always,


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

December 23, 2015 - Week 26


Heyyyy what up ya´ll. So not gonna lie, writing this email makes me super excited because in a matter of a few days we will actually be talking to each other!! It´s super weird that I'm already at my first call home to you guys and crazy that the first 6 months since the dropoff in Reno have come and gone. I could go on and on about it, but in few words I can´t wait to see your guys faces and your voices. So busy week huh? I loved the pics you guys sent me of the house all decorated, and I am very thankful for the 70 degree weather I'm enjoying now as I see the frost on the ground haha. But I'm glad to hear you guys are making all the usual preparations for Christmas and I am sure it will be a blast. 

Okay Mom, I have to start out by saying that we went to the stake center in Los Mochis where there was a broadcast of the dedication. But during the week, it was night time and we were contacting people on the street, and a lady came up and asked us what time church starts at, and told us she was visiting from Tijuana, and that she helped with the dedication. She cooked the food for Pres. Uchtdorf and Elder Oaks, and showed us a ton of videos and photos of all of them. It was super great. This was a really good week for us. We are teaching this 19 year old kid named Luis and he is super nice, really good guy. He told us that a couple years ago he decided that he wanted to change his life, and we told him that we think we have the solution for him. There's also this kid named Osiris who is getting baptized on Saturday and we have been teaching him. His grandma and mom are members, but the men in his family aren't so there's been some conflict with that, but he said he wants to get baptized so this week we have to finish teaching him the lessons so he can move forward with it. Those are the people who we're working most closely with right now, but there's also a lot of inactive members who were baptized wayyyy long ago and some of them weren't ever confirmed and so it's like starting from ground zero. It's been good though, and a few of them came to church for the first time in forever so they're learning nicely!

The preparation and things leading up to Christmas here is pretty minimal for us, as far as hanging decorations and stuff goes, but Mom I will have you know that we put the stockings that you sent us up in the house. Well, we draped them across some chairs in the house, but they are visible. And the other night we were visiting a member who lives right next door to us and she mentioned that she felt sick and that she needed something warm to drink, so we used some of the hot chocolate you sent me, and she helped us prepare it, so it was put to good use. It is nice to walk down the street and still see Christmas lights and decorations, although it is super different because I feel like it should be snowing and frigid cold, but it's like 70 degrees and completely mild weather. But hey, you won't hear any complaints from me. We are really hitting it hard with the Christmas initiative and trying to capitalize on the last few days before Christmas. The church really does a nice job with all their videos, and everything they put out and everyone who watches the video comments on how nice it is. 

So there was a little problem with one of the bills that arrived at the house, and with all the Elders moving around there was a payment on the electricity missed and so they cut our electricity unexpectedly, and we had to pay the missed payment (All of which the church helps with) and sort everything out and it was kinda a stressful day but  one of the Senior Elders from California had to help us through the process, and so he spoke to me in English about the whole thing over the phone for part of the day. It all turned out fine and everything, but I was really grateful for him and that he took time to help us. I'm sure that was about the last thing someone wants to do, but he dropped everything and walked us through what we had to do to get it all sorted out. It makes me appreciate the service that Grandma and Grandpa are doing in Ukraine. I received a pic from them and they look so great. 

I'm blessed to have grandparents, parents, siblings, aunts and uncles that arĂ© such great examples to me and great sources of support. I'm blessed by each and every one of you, and although it's weird being away from all the Christmas fun with yall, I'm truly blessed to be here as a missionary serving the Lord in Sinaloa. I love you all and can't wait to see and talk on Christmas 

All Love,
Elder Stockard 

Monday, December 14, 2015

December 14, 2015 - Week 25

Dear Family,

Well how has everyone been?? It´s sounds like quite the exciting time back there with all the moving about with Christmas and school and work and every other thing that makes life fun haha. And also it sounds like Alyssa killed it as the sugar plum fairy in the Nutcracker! Sad that I had to miss it, but I went to enough ballets throughout my years that I can imagine that she was great as always. It is pretty nice to read your guys emails and updates about final exams coming up and for the first time in years not having to worry about those things, but I can feel the pain of everyone who still has to take them.  So with that being said, I wish them all luck!

So this week was pretty sweet, and wayyyy different setting from what I was accustomed to in my other area. I loved my time and the area in Esperanza, but it is a lot different. So to give you a little bit more details on the transfer.... Esperanza was a small town in the state of Sonora and it was actually the most northern part of the mission. Topolobampo is smaller than Esperanza, it´s a port town literally right on the beach, like we can see the ocean from our house. It´s in the state of Sinaloa, about 5 hours from Esperanza. Imagine the distance between Reno and Vegas and that´s about it. It´s super sweet cause the style and setup of the city is way different  from any other area in the mission. That´s not to say that the city resembles the work of a team of engineers from Harvard, because that definitely is not the case, but it is really sweet nonetheless. It´s allllll hills here and so we do a lot of inclined walking which is good for exercise. There´s  a branch here of about 40 members and they are all sooo awesome. My companion Elder Salazar and I have the same amount of time in the mission, and we were friends before cause we lived together in Esperanza for 3 months, so we were pretty stoked to be comps!  

So as far as the work, I'm really excited to move ahead with the people here. We are teaching a lot of really cool people who have a lot of potential and desire to learn. The members are really willing to help us too. We are teaching this one lady named Carla, and we teach her with her aunt and uncle who are members. We also have this 19 year old kid who is super nice and it makes it easier cause we are the same age and can really just talk with them as friends. All the people we talk to are always super interested in all of the logistics about missionary work, and how our lives are. It´s nice because then we can tell them that we´re really just normal people who wanna help them out. We worked with a kid in the branch this week who is going on his mission to Honduras tomorrow, pretty crazy to see other missionaries setting out for their missions haha. But I'm really excited to continue with the people we have and see how it all goes.

So this weekend was really unique too. We got to go to the dedication of the temple in Tijuana and also the cultural event that went on the night before. The Tijuana temple is soooo beautiful; the people there really are blessed to have it there and I hope one day I can visit it! It was all really well put on, and on top of that I got to listen to Pres. Uchtdorf and Elder Oaks and a few 70´s give killer talks which is always a plus. Then today in Los Mochis we all played soccer with like 12 elders in the area and then went to see Los Mochis a little bit. Super sick city, and they have a lot of great Christmas decorations put up right now which makes it look really nice. Honestly Im really really happy with my current setting and I'm so glad to be out here on the mish.

So as far as the Christmas call... We can do it either on Christmas Day of Christmas Eve, but I wanna do it on the 25th. I think that we should be able to do it at about whatever time we want. I would imagine that we´ll do it maybe at like 4:00 or 5:00, but I will confirm with you guys for sure next week. I don´t exactly know how it works, but I know we use skype. If you guys could set me up a skype account and send me the username and password next week, that would be awesome. Just so I don't have to do all that. I will let you all know definitely  next week. Oh and just a heads up, I think our Pday next week is going to be on a different day. I don´t know exactly when, but there´s a good possibility it gets changed, so just be aware of that if I don´t email you guys on Monday. Well that´s about all for me. I love you all so much and Im so glad everything is good with all of you. I'm sure it will be fine but it´s good you are taking care of it. I love you all and will talk to you all soon.

With Love,


Monday, December 7, 2015

December 7, 2015 - Week 24

Dear Family,

I gotta tell you guys right off the bat, I don't have a ton of time to write but I have lots of exciting news and so I'll pack it all in here for you all. So yesterday was the last day of the transfer, and there is always a buzz in the air with the uncertainty of what´s gonna happen. As luck would have it,  I received a transfer, my first one in my mission!! So I had to pack all my bags late last night and early this morning we all gathered together and went down to Sinaloa, the other state our mission covers. I'm in an area called Topolobampo, and it´s literally right on the ocean and soooooo sick. All the other missionaries are super jealous when you say you´re going to Topolobampo . 

So we arrived here and the branch president gave us a ride to his house where his wife had prepared us lunch, and we talked with them and they´re seriously so awesome. We have some other lessons to night, and I'm super excited to try to help their branch here in Sinaloa.  It really is such a blessing to have great people who are willing to help us. With all that being said, I was sad to say my goodbyes  to the families we were teaching in Esperanza. I am so happy with the progress they all made, and I can't wait to see them be together for time and all eternity. I had a really great transfer with my companion Elder Ruiz as well . 

So my new companion is named Elder Salazar, and we have the same amount of time in the mission and were actually super good friends before this so we were stoked to hear we would be companions. We lived next door to each other and were in the same ward in Esperanza for 3 months. We are both super stoked to get to work here and enjoy the views while doing it haha. He is from Mexico City and is an awesome missionary . 

This week was really good though. We taught some of the most spiritual lessons in my mission and I got to work with my trainer, Elder Ruiz for a few days because there was some sick companions that had to rest. I also received your package with all the starbursts and peanut butter, thanks you guys so much!!! Awesome news from home with Tyler and the schools, and I'm so glad everyone´s doing so well. I love you all and will talk to you with more info in a week!!

All Love,

Elder Stockard