Monday, July 4, 2016

Happy 4th of July

Right now we are in Oaxaca. We got here this morning without too much trouble. Just as we entered the main highway, they put the blockades up. Our driver knew of a secret way to get onto the highway. We offroaded a little bit and got passed the blockade. Take that teachers! Haha things have been calm all week, just the blockades that we've been dealing with, but no violence. We have heard rumors that the army was going to come down soon to show their authority. If that happens it's going to get really ugly because the families and communities of the people who were killed a couple weeks ago are planning on fighting back and bringing weapons and firepower. The army hasn't shown up yet again. Who knows if the rumors are true that they're going to come. I've been hearing that they're calling it a Civil War. Hopefully things calm down a bit. The mission told us to buy food storage, so we have some food storage in the house to last us a couple weeks if necessary.

The transfers were interesting. All of the transfers were done by shuttle. The bus company isn't functioning right now for all the blockades happening in Oaxaca. My companion Elder Peterson got here from Huatulco without too many problems, and we were able to get to Nochixtlan on Monday night. There was a blockade at the bridge entering Nochixtlan, so we had to get off the shuttle with all of his suitcases and we walked through the blockade. I was kind of nervous, I'm not gonna lie. But no one did anything to us, a few times some people started cursing at us but we ignored them and kept walking by. We were relieved when we finally got to the house. This week we've talked to a few American reporters that are in Nochixtlan right now. I wouldn't feel safe as an American reporter in Mexico. I've heard some bad stories, the people doing bad things to foreign reporters here.  Elder Peterson is a great guy and a great missionary. He has about a year on the mission and he's from Utah, nearby Provo. His dad works at BYU in administration. He was the star quaterback in high school and took his team to state. He has a rocket arm. He's really tall too so I look short again. Dang it...hahaha. Today were in Oaxaca because were going to have a multi-zone activity. We're going to play some sports and eat burgers. What a great way to celebrate the 4th in Oaxaca! I'm sure Sister Madsen will take some awesome photos so stay tuned this week on the mission facebook page!

We have been able to work hard teaching people this week too. We have two baptismal dates now. One with Fernando, who's really prepared to accept the gospel. He just needs to start reading more of the Book of Mormon. We have another date for this month with Karina. She has everything accept for her parents permission. She's 14 years old and really wants to get baptized, but she's scared to ask her dad for permission. We promised her that she's not alone and that God will help soften the hearts of her parents. We fasted for her this past fast sunday so she could ask with faith for permission to be baptized. 

I forgot to mention the captions of the pictures that I'm uploading. One picture is of one of my favorite foods. Pig intestines. It's delicious I'm serious. The other one of the sheep, goats and the shepherd on his donkey in the middle of mainstreet Nochixtlan. "Traffic in Nochixtlan" hahaha

Have a great 4th of July! Love you all.
Elder Smith

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