Thursday, July 7, 2011


Ross is about 75% of the way through his mission....sometimes that seems so hard to believe, other times I feel like the days drag by. I'm guessing for my parents, the days just seem to drag by!! We all love Tuesdays when we hear from Ross and it's funny to see my parents stare at their phones, repeatedly updating their emails, waiting for that one that says it's from Ross. We love our missionary so much and are so proud of him and his service to the Lord...but we sure do miss him!!

I've posted 3 of his latest emails to my mom below. I always say I'm going to try to do better at keeping this updated but I never do! In Ross's letter this week he mentioned that his new mission President's wife wants to start a blog for the families to read so we'll let you know if that is done and if you're able to access it as well. I'm hoping she gets a blog started, I would love to hear how things are going out there from the mission's point of view!

Ross is very grateful for the letters and gifts he has received from family and friends. I know you may not always get a return letter of thanks and updates, but just know your thoughts and gifts are appreciated. He is so so so busy and recently we've only been getting short notes ourselves on Tuesdays. But Ross ends every letter (to me at least) by saying "tell everybody that I love them" so I'm passing that on to you too. He loves you and is grateful for your love and support. :)

So enjoy reading the emails below and if you feel so inclined, his address is posted to the side and you can write him a quick note...because even if he doesn't write you back, he LOVES to get mail. Such is the life of a missionary I guess!!



Letter from June 21, 2011

June 21, 2011

Hey...tough week....but it refined me and things are getting better

Ninety percent of our teaching is in Spanish. The only person we teach in English is a 19 yr old girl but even then, her boyfriend doesn't speak English so we have to talk to him in Spanish. But yeah, everything is in Spanish. My area is just like something you would see in Mexico.

Well like I said this week was like the refiners fire. I'll relate it to sports. Remember the beginning of my senior year and I lost, what I like to call, my "swagger"? I just felt like I couldn't do it anymore? I just hit rock bottom? That is what happened this week.

Our investigators buffed us, we didn't really accomplish anything, and we had one investigator tell us they didn't want to be baptized anymore. So yeah.....I was humbled. On Friday night, after the night was over, I got on my knees and prayed. For awhile. Then I realized something. I realized that I was trying to do it all by myself. I was trying to do things my way. And the work of the Lord can't be done only by man. Its impossible. You have to be guided by the Lord in order to succeed. These things I was going through was a humbling process. The Lord was helping me realize that I couldn't do it on my own. I needed his help.

So Saturday it was a little better, but it was still the same kind of thing. Sunday was good. We only had 1 investigator show up, but then something happened to turn it all around. Sunday School was just finishing and President Lopez came and asked me if I could translate for the high councilor. I smiled and said, "You want me to translate?" What was going through my head was , "I have trouble translating what I want to say, there is no way that I can translate what someone else is trying to say." He smiled and shook his head, "si". I looked back at him and said, "Si, si quiere". He must have seen the look of doubt on my face and he put his hand on my shoulder said, "Si te puedes." He had confidence in me, but I had 0 confidence in myself. I remember looking around and thinking, "there are tons of people here who are fluent in both languages, why can't they do it?" So Sacrament meeting started and I prayed hard during the sacrament. I prayed for the Lord to help me, to put the words in my mouth, and to give me confidence in myself. So he was the first speaker and we started and it went great. I made a couple of mistakes but I was able to keep up with him and translate without a lot of long pauses or missed words. Wow. It was a powerful spiritual experience! I sat back down and then I just opened up my heart to the Lord for helping me get my "swagger" back.

Yesterday was great. We had some good lessons and our WML asked a lady straight up, "so..why haven't you been baptized yet? Do you want blessings?" The lord humbled me and now things are getting a lot better! It is amazing to see the Lord work in other people's lives but it is even more amazing when you see it in your own lives!

Well that's about it! I LOVE YOU GUYS!!!!!


Letter from June 14, 2011

June 14, 2011

We meet in a school because most of the members don't have cars and have to walk and all the other buildings are too far. There is no room to build in Barrio Logan so we rent out the school on Sundays and Fridays (activiteis). But maybe we will have a building soon, they have been trying for a while though.

This week was great. The members here are awesome. There is a lady who talked to her friends about the gospel and then called us and told us we had an appt with them and she would be there and together, we would baptize them ahhaha. That never happens. We had the appt last Thursday, they came to church on Sunday, we had another appt yesterday and now they have a baptismal date for the last Sunday of the month. God works with those that want to share the gospel. All it takes is a desire.

Yesterday was full of miracles. We received 3 referrals. One from a member in my last area. One from a RC for his parents and his 2 brothers. And one for another family of 4. WOW! I have been praying so hard for miracles lately and doing my best to be worthy of them and the Lord is blessing us. I dont know what we are doing, but God is blessing us a lot now. But with those blessings come a lot of pressure. God has entrusted us with these opportunities, now we have to take care of them and bring them in. It's going to be fun.

I love you mom!


Letter from June 7, 2011

June 7, 2011

I am feeling more settled in, but there is a sense of urgency that I haven't felt before..I think it is because I realized that I have 6 months left and its time to perform. But yeah, I'm more calm now, but we still have a long way to go before we get where I want the area to be

President Clayton comes in at the end of this month. He called Pres Donaldson and told him they were going to drive in the night before and stay in a hotel and President Donaldson said that's fine, as long as he stays out of the mission boundaries. After Pres Clayton is set apart, as soon as he steps foot in the mission boundaries, he is in charge and the keys are past....pretty cool

Well this week was great. We had a lot of success. We had a training meeting with Pres Donaldson and he re-explained the doctrine of baptism. That is the urgency I am feeling now I think. There is no way that the people in my area can truly be saved and receive the help from the atonement without me/missionaries. Its brought a whole new outlook and it makes me want to run to everyone on the street. It has been something that's missing on my mission so far, the urgency, but I have it now and I like it.

We have 3 people with baptismal dates and things are going great. My area is like Tijuana. There are no black people or white people, just Mexicans/Latinos....its awesome. Our branch president wants 2 baptism per month, so that is what he will get. The branch is awesome....story time: So on Sunday night we went to see a less active and we were just talking. I asked him how things were going and he said they are.....ok. I said, "M..., that doesn't sound too convincing. Whats up bro?" He then opened up and laid it all on the table. How things were rough with his family and how after his baptism all these trials came up and how he stopped going to church because he couldn't handle everything. I was thinking about what to say to him and I opened my mouth and told him how the adversary doesn't want him in church because he knows his potential. I told him the God needed him church to be an example for people everywhere that it is possible to turn their lives around. (He used to be in a gang and deal drugs and all this stuff and has been shot at now for what he did in the past). He teared up a little bit and said that he knows he just has to take the step. After I invited him to take the step this week and go back to church. He said he would and we have an appt with him tonight and are going to talk to him and his girlfriend, who is not a member. It was such a powerful experience. I have been focusing a lot lately on the having faith to tell people how it is and to promise them things with my priesthood authority. The spirit testifies to people when we do that and it is a powerful experience. AWESOME