Monday, February 23, 2015

Week 7   First Week in Honduras

Today marks the end of my first week in Honduras! I do not know about you, but it is really hot down here and I cannot stand it! Haha. But, it’s ok. Also, if you think you know Spanish as a gringo, you really don’t. When I got here, for the first couple of days, I could not understand anything! Now, I am catching a little bit of what they are saying. It’s so hard, but I know that through my Heavenly Father and the Holy Ghost anything is possible! 

Generally the food is great. But, some of the food is disgusting, I eat it anyway! I have had pollo, papas fritas, mucho arroz y frijoles, mucho carne y tambien uno tiempo and I even had Pizza! That’s right, Hondurans have pizza! 

My first area is San Rafael and it is beautiful! The people here are so kind and loving. Some people choose to ignore us, but most people say ¨Buenas!¨ when we pass by. I am here for 6 months because my compañero trains me for 3 months and then when he leaves I am the area trainer. It’s going to be long and probably for the first month or so, I probably will not understand much Spanish, but I know I can do it!

Guess what!?!? I had my first baptism too! Just this Saturday we baptized part of the Raudales family. They have 34 people in their family! Can you believe that! It is so awesome! I got to baptize one of them. My District Leader was supposed to, but he let me do it. Awesome right! 

My companion is Elder Rodas! He is so awesome! He only speaks Spanish because he is Latino, which helps me learn mucho! Because of this the next couple of months will be hard, but I know he will help me as well as the Lord too! We live in a very big apartment. It’s so huge and we can see a really cool view of San Rafael! Also, one of the elders from my District in the CCM is in my District now. It’s so awesome! Our days here are so long. This past week we have been in our casa until about 1 studying and then we go out proselyting. It is so awesome! I cannot wait for these next 2 years, this is exciting. I have to do my laundry in a pila (a cement wash basin), it sucks. But, I can deal with it. 

Hope you like the pictures below!

Love all you guys! Please write me! It makes my week! 

Elder Jensen 

My companion, Elder Rodas

President and Sister Candido Fortuna Cabrera with all new elders and sisters in the missoin

View from my apartment

Inside my apartment...really nice and big one.

Ruadales Family

My first baptism

A sleeping elder LOL

Monday, February 16, 2015

Week 6: The Time Has Come

Hey everyone! I just want to let you guys know that I am fine and well. I also want to let you know that I leave in less than 12 hrs! I cannot believe that I will be in Honduras tomorrow. I am a 1/24 done with my mission. I just cannot believe that. I am so excited. We had testimony meeting last night and I was one of many missionaries that shared theirs. One of the things I bore testimony of was I knew that my call to Honduras was not an accident, Heavenly Father sent me there for a purpose. He sent me to learn, grow, convert, and serve the people of Comayaguela, Honduras. This knowledge is going to help me when I am in Honduras. I know to expect hard times, and I know that someday the Spanish will just click. I have gotten pretty good at teaching the gospel lessons and when I do, I feel the spirit so strongly. Praying everyday to my Heavenly Father has blessed me to know this. I know the gospel is true and I can't wait to share my testimony with the people of Honduras.

Elder Wight, from my district, told me this "Obedience brings blessings, but exact obedience brings exact blessings." This has truly inspired me to always be obedient. I know that there will be times I will need specific blessings from Heavenly Father, and if I've been completely obedient and worked hard, the Lord will help me specifically with my problem. I still really cannot believe that it has been 6 weeks already. Soon I will be half way done with my mission; it is going by so fast. WOW!

I have some pictures below of my last week here. I am actually going to get a Dropbox and give you all the username and password so you can see all of the pictures I have taken and not just the few I post on my blog. But, here are my favorites from this week.
(Mom here: Alec wrote me later in the hour and said it was taking too much of his limited time on the computer to set up the Dropbox. I will work on setting it up this next week so all he has to do is access it and dump all his photos there. If it works, I will send out the link to it in the coming weeks.)

I hope everyone is reading my blog and please keep writing me when you have the chance! I love hearing from everyone! Wish me luck, tomorrow is my big day to Honduras

Elder Jensen
Narnia: A secret tile in the ground floor of our classroom of all the 16A Districts at the CCM! 

My District including the teachers. This is the photo Elder Wight used when he drew us on the whiteboard a few weeks ago.

Elder awesome missionary
Elder Harolds...and awesome missionary

Elder Fox....another awesome missionary.

I bought this from one of the Hermana (sisters) that drew this for me. It's of Helaman and the 2,000 stripling warriors. She is so talented. 

Above is Alec with the new Mexico MTC President, President Tenorio,  as of a couple of weeks ago. Steve quickly noticed this man and his name. Turns out, President Tenorio was Steve's Mission President when he served 26 years ago in Tuxtla Gutierrez, Mexico.  See photos below.
Another picture of Steve and President Tenorio. Steve and the other missionaries in this photo were selected to do a special temple session with President Tenorio because of their hard work and success (100 baptisms each) in their mission.  

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Week 5 Count Down

Elder Knuth and Elder Jensen
It was so good seeing a friendly face from home.
Today marks 6 days left here at the CCM! Wow! This week has been so exciting and I have been able to do and see so much stuff. I am so excited to leave next Tuesday and fly to Honduras. I received my flight itinerary just yesterday and says that I am flying from Mexico City to San Salvador, then onto Tegucigalpa, Honduras. I really can not believe how the time has gone by so fast. I am already done with a month of my mission. It has been so fun here, but I know it is going to so much more fun and better in Honduras! It has been such a blessing being here and to have a chance to serve a mission I know that the blessings will just keep rolling in. There are going to be so many throughout these next two years. 

My good friend Elder Knuth came last week! He was able to bring me the stuff I needed from home, like my glasses and another pair of shoes, but it also included some treats (Thanks Mom!). I have a picture of me and him above. My family also sent me a Valentine’s Day card, but I have to wait until Saturday to open it, because that’s Valentine’s Day. I am so excited for Elder Knuth and look forward to keeping in touch with him during our missions. I will also keep in touch with Elder Bills and Elder Badger too! 

Just this past Sunday I was able to watch "Meet the Mormons." The CCM shows a church movie every Sunday night and they are awesome. I have watched “Only a Stonecutter”, “The Testaments”, “The Prophet Joseph Smith”, “The Restoration”, and now “Meet the Mormons”. Wow, what an awesome movie. My favorite parts of the movie, in order,  was the Missionary Mom, the Candy Dropper, and then the Humanitarian. During the Missionary Mom segment, I cried. I cried mostly because I thought of when I got my missionary call, when I was getting my clothes with my mom, and my departure date. I was balling because I was thinking of my family so much. So, yeah that happened. 

This week has been a little bit of a struggle, I have had a sore throat and my ears are clogged, but I am getting better slowly. The real struggle is with my companion Elder Hernandez. He has strep throat. He has really not been feeling good at all. So, if you could put him in your prayers, please, that would help.

Next Monday, I can write to you guys. Since I do not have a P-day next Wednesday, they are letting me write on Monday. So, that is a bonus for me and for you guys, before I head off. :)

Yo se que va a Honduras sera una bendición en mi vida. Yo se que Dios mandó mi a Honduras para razón. Creo en Jesucristo Expiacion y se que va a ayúdame durante la misión. Mi propósito es a "Invitar a las personas a venir a Cristo!" Yo soy un misionario de La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los santos de últimos días. Yo soy Elder Jensen. 

I just thought I should share a little bit in Spanish with you guys. Hope you guys like it. I am so excited to leave the CCM, but a little sad because I will only see it for a little bit in my mission. I am ready to go out and serve the lord with all my might, mind, and strength! Hope you guys like my second to last email here in the CCM! Love all you guys so much and I want to thank you for all the support you have given me. Keep me in your prayers and send me an email once in a while. I love hearing from everyone! Talk you guys on Monday! 

Elder Jensen

Departure list...I leave for Honduras at 2:30am

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Week 4 Elder Knuth Comes!

Elder Jensen's District

Hello everyone! This is Elder Jensen from the Mexico MTC reporting for week 4. Wow! I leave for Honduras in 2 WEEKS! Crazy!!!! I am so excited to leave here, the days are getting so old because it is the same schedule every single day for 6 weeks. The only thing I am going to miss is the food. The food here is really good, better than I expect it will be in Honduras, so I've heard! This was one successful week here in the MTC for me. I have been saying my prayers every morning and night and have been getting answers to them each and every day. I have been asking God for a miracle, because I don’t feel very confident yet, to help me learn pretty good Spanish before I go out into the mission field in Honduras.

This past Sunday was fast Sunday and I bore my testimony in Spanish and could feel the spirit so strong. I gave the best testimony I could in Spanish. I do not think I said it all in Spanish, but the spirit helped me all the way through.  I have learned much more Spanish than I knew before I got here. It has been tough and I have had to put in a lot of work. So I am happy where I am right now! The devotionals here have helped me so much! This past Sunday was particularly inspiring for me because of my struggle to learn the language. In the devotional it talked about putting in 600 to 1000 hours of speaking and learning of the language rather than only 100 hours. So our district set a goal for the next 2 weeks to speak as much Spanish as we could. We speak it in our casa, in the comedor, in our classroom, in talking to anyone…everywhere. So far it has helped a lot. I know I can do it. As Elder Bednar said in a talk given here, "You can do it! Do not give me up. Keep working at it and you can do it. YOU CAN DO IT!" 

This past Monday a part of my district left that was so dear to my heart. They helped me so much with keeping me company and lifting me when I was down. There is a picture of them below as well as a picture of our whole district all together. An elder from that group actually sang to us before he was called "You Raised Me Up" by Josh Groban. Awesome voice!

Today, one of my good friends Elder Tristan Knuth is coming to the MTC! Wow, I am so excited to see him. I am so blessed that he is coming here, it will be so good to see a familiar face.  It is also a blessing for him to have the chance to come here and feel the spirit every minute of the day. Also, I can not wait for him to bring the stuff that my parents sent with him. It is going to be an awesome next 2 weeks having him here with me. The only things that are annoying here are the fireworks that go off everyday around the MTC, for no reason. I guess Mexicans love fireworks. Also this stupid plane that flies around and plays the same song everyday, it is so annoying. Man, I am really excited to get out of here and into the mission field. 

This has been one heck of a week. I am getting so excited to leave here and get down to Honduras and start working and spreading the gospel down there. I am so happy for my friend Taylor, as he is already serving in Oregon right now. My friends Devin and Tristan  just left on their missions today and I am happy for them too. I think about all of them often.

Please email me if you have the chance. I love hearing from everyone every week! Talk to you next Wednesday! 

A drawing of our District
Elder Wight (the guy from Australia) drew it, he has talent!
I think you can guess who is me?

Some of the my District that left on Monday. 
Me, doing my laundry on P-day