Monday, September 18, 2017

There's No Place I'd Rather Be!

Okay Fam!

Well, I have officialy 1 week in my area, and it's super awesome! My companion, Elder Molina is awesome!  We get along super good, and we teach well together too, and yea, it's just all good stuff! :) I'll be sure to send you guys a comp foto soon!  

But now I live with another copanionship, and I forgot how much cooler that is. I dont know, I really like it. It's a little more exciting and a lot more fun! Hahaha!

Also, this week was Mexico's Independence Day! September 15 & 16. That's something else... I dont know why we celebrate Cinco de Mayo... May 5th is literally a regular day here, but man the night of the 15th is crazy! For that exact reason we had to get in the house at 6 that day!!!! Thats super early, so we ate pizzas and had a little party :D

But the area is super cool, the zone is cool too! We have really good District Leaders. Elder Ramirez is one of em, I was with him in Cerro Grande, in fact, he was my District Leader there! The other one is Elder Alavez, and he's from my generation (entered the field from the MTC with the same group). He's from the Cuidad de Mexico, and he's super cool! Honestly, it's pretty awesome. 

But yea this week has been cool! We're really focusing on finding new people, finding the people that the Lord has prepared.

Something that I've learned this week, or something that stood out to me, was from a couple chapters in Luke! The first is in Luke, Chapter 14. It talks about a master of a house inviting people to a dinner, but a lot of people said no at the last minute, so he told his servants to go find the humble people on the streets to receive his dinner. I found that this really applies to us as people. God has created His 'dinner' o sea, blessings, and we can choose to have them or not. He won't force us to receive them, and we may have to give up a little bit, to receive a lot more! We have to learn to be humble and put our things aside for a little bit so that He can bless us with all that we have. But then we can see something else in Luke Chapter 17.  There was a time when Jesus healed 10 Lepers, and they all asked for help, but only 1 recognized the divine help and gave thanks to God. We, every day have the decision to be what kind of person we want to be. We can choose to be one of the people that didn't go to the dinner of the master, for excuses, and lose blessings, or we can be humble and go and receive more. We can choose to be grateful and give thanks to God, or we can go our way being content because life is good. We have these choices each and every day. We choose who we want to be.  I hope we all want to show up to the dinner, receive the blessings, and be grateful for all of them each and every day.

Bueno pues, que mas. I think that's pretty much it! It's been a good week, I'm excited to see what we will do here in Tech 1. It should be a really good 6 weeks. Can't believe that in this cycle I'm gonna hit a year... I honestly can't believe it. It's been so amazing, the year has passed so fast!!! I love you guys and miss you guys, but there's no place I'd rather be. I hope you guys have a great week, and Ill see you guys next week :D

Till next time, stay amazing,

Goodbye Chuviscar, Hello Technologico!!


Well, changes are here again, and after 6 months in Chuviscar, they moved me!  We've seen some crazy changes in the mission these days, But yea now I'm in the north of the city, in a Zone called Tech. The Stake is called Technologico, but there's two Zones of missionaries in the Stake, so I'm the Zone Leader of Tech 1. Does that make sense? My companion is named Elder Molina! He's from Honduras, and he's awesome!

It's pretty cool, so far so good, although I don't have a full day out here yet, so I really don't have a whole lot to report on of my new area, but my last week in Chuviscar was awesome!!!!  

So, this week in Chuviscar we met a girl that is so valiant! She found the missionaries and she started talking with them a while ago, but she received super strong answer about the church upon praying about it. She said she asked God if this message was something she needed in this life, if it was something that He wanted for her. She said she just felt it and knew upon asking. Upon receiving the answer, she said 'I'm willing to do whatever it takes to follow this feeling'. Really, she has such a strong testimony already. I dont think I've ever met anyone like her. She was so awesome! Honestly, she strengthened my testimony, and showed me what it means to be humble and have courage at the same time.

And then there was another young girl who had a very similar story :) her whole family is receiving the lessons from the missionaries, and she had the option to wait as long as she wanted, until who knows how long, to get baptized, or she could do it right away, even earlier than her parents. She wanted to do it now, because she wanted to show her faith and be an example for her parents. It was so adorable, and she got really emotional, it was super awesome honestly. The Spirit was super strong. It was amazing.

Then we had another baptism, and it was the grandma of a member family, with young grandkids. She always goes to church but never wanted to get baptized. Then we went with her one day, and she told us that she wanted to be an example for her young grandkids. She said she knew that this message was true, and that the Book of Mormon is the word of God, but was afraid to get baptized - and then she also decided to be brave, and take a step of faith for herself and for her grandkids. Needless to say the Spirit was super strong in this baptism too! :)

This week we had a lot of excitement in Girasoles too! Yet another person I knew in Girasoles finally was able to get baptized! He was a nine year old kid named Erick, and of course, my boy Templeton was there. That kid is awesome! :) 

Really something that I've came to appreciate this week comes from the Book of Mormon, Alma 37:6  Now ye may suppose that this is foolishness in me; but behold I say unto you, that by small and simple things are great things brought to pass; and small means in many instances doth confound the wise.

This week I really came to thinking about the small and simple things are how God makes big changes. I really got to thinking about how our lives are just series of a lot of small decisions that bring us to where we are now. I'm here in the mission now thanks to a lot of tiny prayers, a lot of days deciding to go to seminary, a little here, and a little there, putting 'oil in our lamps' like the parable of the virgins in the Bible. 

A lot of these special moments are the ones some might call 'coincidence' but these moments are always moments when God works upon all of us to bring us to a certain cross road, maybe with another person, maybe with an answer, with who knows what, but it's something, that looking back, we can recognize as Divine Intervention. Just something I came to really aprreciate this week :)

Remind me in a year and I'll tell you guys the story about The first girl, Daniela, dorinachos, and a foot infection okay? It's just too long to explain with the time we have to write :) Hahahahaha!

Bueno pues, Thats kinda it for this week, I hope you guys have an amazing week, I love you guys so much. Really, God lives, and He knows us and loves us. For that exact reason I'm here in Mexico. 

I love you guys, I'll write you guys soon,
Till next time!

PS Yes I'm wearing the same clothes in all the baptism pictures... they were all on the same day :)  And it was a good day!

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

This Week Was a Good One!!

Hey Fam!

This week was a good one! 

And this coming week should also be a good one!!!! But that's for the next letter ;) 

Let's see where to start...

Monday evening, one of the wards in our Zone had a baptism!! She was one of Elder White's investigators and she decided to get baptized! And she asked me to do the ordinance, and so I did! It was super awesome, and the service was just beautiful :)

Then this week was good, did Divisions with Temps twice because of interviews, and man that's always amazing. The dude is incredible. One of the days we did divisions, we ate with the Patriarch of the Stake (he's in my ward) and during the meal, we were all just talking about spiritual things and experiences and the Patriarch and his wife ended up crying... the Spirit really was amazingly strong.  At the end, when we went to leave, the Patriarch stopped me, shook my hand and hugged me, and said 'Thank you guys for coming. The Spirit was really strong with you two'. And I was kinda lost for words. And it's not just coincidence because in the two days I was with Templeton, everyone was crying!.. Even a uber driver we had -- at the end the ride, he started tell us that he felt good with us and started sharing things from his life and got emotional about it. Elder Templeton is just a great missionary, to be honest. I love being with that kid.

And then Hugo got baptized!!! That was awesome!!!!!! All the youth of the church were in charge of the baptismal service and Hugo's father did the ordinance!!!!!!!! Presidente was there, and he later commented on how awesome the baptism was in his address to the Stake! (during Stake Conference) But yea, Hugo was super happy and his family was happy and they're just really good people. I love being with them. I know Hugo will be an amazing missionary some day.

And the last week I talked about being the answer to someone's prayer, and how we should pray for the opportunity to do so? Well, it was cool! I had a few experiences, but one stood out more than others, just cuz it was so small but so clear. We were cleaning our house and I found a pair of shoes like way hidden away in one of the closets, and they were too big for me, and too small for my comp, and so we took em outside, and a young man passed by, and I felt like 'give them to him' so I stopped him, offered him the shoes and he said 'Ah thank you so much!! I've been praying for new shoes like those!' and just in that moment it hit me like, 'woah' it was a really neat experience, and I know that God answers our prayers :)

Also, I have learned to love Sundays. It has saved me here in this area - just when life is difficult, Sunday comes. It gives us a chance to rest, recover and rethink about what's really important before we start the week again.  So I'm really appreciating Sundays!

And this is Zoe, she's a doll, and is one of the members of our ward.  I love this family!!!  Anyway, she put my jacket on and it totally reminded me of when Jimmy Fallon put Shaq's jacket on.  Hilarious! 

But, that's kinda where I'm at!! This is the last week of this cycle, and everyone says I'll be getting changes. Hahaha! I've been in 4 areas in this Stake and I've been here for 3 Stake Conferences, it's pretty cool, because not every missionary can say something like that!  And I just love these people and feel so at home here.  I kinda hope I stay a little bit more. Maybe I'll get a full year out here! ;)

But that's whats up. I love you and hope you guys have a great week! 
Until next time!!!!!!

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

The Next Best Week Ever in the Mission!!

Okay, this week was sooooo dope, where do we start?? 

We have to start with my man, Omar, from Girasoles, because this week the guy got baptized!!! He has so much faith and has changed so much!!! I just about cried when I saw him dressed in white! I knew this day would come and I'm just so grateful that I could be here to see it... and with who else but Elder Templeton! Man, that was the coolest darn experience ever.

And that morning, we needed to get something from the missionaries from the area Cerro Grande. The area literally touches my current area so we called them, asked the favor and decided to meet up to get it. So we met up with them on the border, and then all of a sudden a car pulled up and parked next to us, and the familia Campa got out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! They were the coolest family in Cerro Grande!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Two of their kids got baptized when I was there!!!!!! and so we caught up, and the youngest one turned 8 this month and he also got baptized!!!!! And then, like it wasn't already awesome enough, they shared that the Mom and Dad got married and the Mom got baptized last Saturday!!! When they told me all this I just about cried!!! I was so excited! They're honestly, just the best people -- I was freaking out I was so happy for them!!

And our friend Hugo that we've been teaching... Well, school and seminario started, and he's been going to both everyday!!!! His baptism is this coming Saturday, and he's thrilled, and a bunch of the youth want to go to his baptism!! It's so cool that the Lord has allowed us to be a part of this. It's way awesome!!

Bueno pues I recently finished the Book of Mormon cover to cover again, and I really learned a lot! And since then, I've been studying the New Testament, and there's a lot of really good stuff in there too! Something that grabs my attention is how much Christ always looked out for the needs of others before his own. For example, in Luke 22, when the soldiers come with Judas to take Jesus, even after he had been suffering so much in the Garden of Gethsemane, and He knew He was about to be taken to die, one of His Disciples tried to defend him and cut the ear off of one of the soldiers. It was in this intense moment, Christ took the time and the effort to restore and heal his ear. It really compels me because it's so easy for us to think about us, and what we're going through in the moment, and not even notice the needs of others. let alone the needs of those who may have bad intentions toward us. So I've been thinking about this a lot, and I came to the conclusion that it would be cool to start to pray for this help, right?  To be able to do as Christ did. Then the thought came to take it even a step further -- and after listening to a class about Service, and how God answers prayers through others yesterday in church, I thought it would be cool to pray for the opportunity to answer a pray of somebody this week. I just thought about yesterday, and so I'll let you guys know how it goes, but I invite you to do the same!! Pray and ask for the opportunity to answer a prayer this week. But the things is, if you do, you have to be looking for the opportunity, whatever it may be.  And you have to be ready to act on the prompting, whatever it may be.  But it would be awesome to try it, no? I'll be giving it a shot this week, and I'll let you guys know how it goes, okay?

And last thing, today we climbed Cerro Grande too! It was super dope. I snapped a few photos to share... That's pretty much all I have for this week, I love you guys and I hope you have a good week!!!!

Until next time!!!!!

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Just Another Day in the Mission Life!

Okayyyyyyy this week!

Bueno, I don't think a lot of crazy stuff happened, other than this one kid we're teaching. I'm just gonna start with that :D

This kid, Hugo, is the son of some menos activos. The missioneries taught his family when he had like 6 or 7 years. Point is, his parents got baptized, but he never did. So, when his dad showed up to church by himself one day, a few weeks back, we were like uh we gotta visit him! get him back to church. So, we went! We knocked on the door, and this kid answered, like 15 years old, and he says 'Woah Elders!!! como estamos????' and we were like uhhh 'who are you?..' SOOOO we got to know him, Hugo, and the kid is incredible. He already knows so much, he has been reading the pamphlets and hymn book all these years of being outside of the church. So we literally just talk a little about what he already knows when we go. Every Sunday he shows up in a suit and he taught himself how to tie a tie and he brings a little side bag and the kid just looks like a missionary.

De hecho, this Sunday, our services start at 9, and we were getting ready, when at like 8:15 en la manana our phone rang, and it was Hugo! He called us and said 'Hey Elders, you ready yet??? should I come by and get you guys??' It was so awesome! It was like a role reversal! ...and then, in the uber to church the driver asked us, 'what our you guys, Jehovah's Witness? and Hugo says, 'No, we're Mormons!' and I was so stoked. This guy wants to go on a mission so bad and I really believe that he'll get out in the field and be the best missionary in a few short years. He will be getting baptized the end of this month.

Also, remember the person in Girasoles that made me a cake? Well his name is Omar, and after so much time of going to church and progressing, He finally told Elder Templeton and his comp that he wants to get baptized!!! I'm so excited for this one. The guy is really awesome and a really good friend. I hope everything plays out good so that he can get baptized this week.

We also had a Zone Conference and Leadership Council, so I have a few of those pictures, not a whole lot else! I am good, my comp is good, the zone is good, and Elder Templeton is awesome!!! I love seeing that kid so often. He's a gift for me out here, Holy Cow! I definitely need him here in Mexico for sure!! Hahaha! He even taught me how to play ping pong like a boss this morning. Bueno, Pues I think that's pretty much all I have for this week!! 

Congrats To the Hamasaki family!! That's honestly amazing that they got sealed!!!! I remember Bro. Hamasaki's baptism like it was yesterday! I wish them the best!!!

Bueno, until the next week fam, I love you guys a bunch, I hope you have a great week!!!!

Stay awesome,

Monday, August 14, 2017

Happy Birthday Mom!!


Before anything else... Happy Birthday Mom!!!! I'm so glad you got the other messages :) You very may well get some more today, because I told some friends it was your birthday! 

And that's awesome that you guys are having such a good time being the ward missionaries and mission leader, it's really cool to see you guys at work!! Even if it's from a distance Hahaha! It makes me happy to see the ward at home progressing so much. 

Okay, well this week was pretty good! It was a pretty regular week but we had a pretty cool experience! Okay, so a couple months ago when I was in Girasoles, Elder Marx and I talked with everyone. Like, EVERYONE.  When I got there, we didn't have anybody to teach so we knocked on doors, we talked to people in the street, everything and anything we could think of to contact and find people we could help.  Bueno, so one day, you might remember me telling you, we knocked on a door, and we found a young girl. Marx and I started teaching her, but she never went to church, so we told her that we'd have to stop coming for a little bit. I planned to go back and check in on her, but I got moved. BUT GUESS WHAT?  She started going to church and yesterday she got baptized and TEMPS WAS THERE!! That boy just keeps making my day out here. He's the bomb! 

Also, remember Elder Johansen from the CCM? Well, he's a Zone Leader now too!  And we're neighbors! Hahaha! But yea, he's awesome too! :) I think he's gonna be an AP (Assistant to the Mission President) one day.  At least I sure hope so!!!!

But Okay, other than this, the week was pretty normal! We're putting in the work out here and I honestly love it!  

Elder Zaragoza and I get along awesome. Like I've said before, I've gotten pretty lucky with my comps. 

Don't have a whole lot to report, so I'll send some photos!!!!!

I love you guys!!! Have an awesome week!!!!

Till next time,

An Elder in my Zone completed one year in the mission this week so we suprised him with a cake and some soda to celebrate a lil bit. :)

Oh, we also did FHE with the zone and a family that we love here. That was so fun!

Loosely translated:  
Reading is like kissing, if you don't do it a lot, people will know when you open your mouth! (because your tongue will give you away)!  Hahaha!!

And Chihuahua is getting super green with all of the rain we've been getting lately!

A note from Nick's Mom:

More sweet Birthday greetings from Missionaries in Chihuahua!!  Nick is taking good care of me, providing lot's of birthday cheer!!  Still loving all of the kindness shared about the genuine affection these young men and women have for our Elder!!

Hey Sister Fardos. 
There's word going around that your birthday is tomorrow! First of all I just want to wish you a happy birthday. I hope you have the greatest day. And I also want you to know that you son Elder Fardos (Nick) is an amazing person. He is honestly on of the best friends I have ever had and he has helped me so much. I look up to him a ton. He honestly has changed my life. So thank you so much for having a great son and family. I can't wait to meet you guys one day. Thanks for everything.
Love, Elder Templeton​​

Buen día familia Fardos. 
Soy un misionero en Chihuahua y estamos con su hijo, elder Fardos y nos comentó que cumplía años y queríamos felicitarle y también agradecerle por los spinners que mandó para nosotros, son buenos para quitar el stress de vez en cuando. Les deseamos que estén bien y que no se preocupen por su hijo, está haciendo un buen trabajo. 
Excelente semana, cuídense.
I am a missionary in Chihuahua with your son, Elder Fardos and he told us that you were celebrating your birthday and we wanted to congratulate you and also thank you for the spinners you sent us, they are good to take away the stress from time to time. We wish you well and do not worry about your son, He is doing a good job.
Excellent week, Take care.
-Elder Aceves del Estado de México. 

Feliz cumpleaños hermana Fardos, no le conocemos, pero le deseamos un muy buen feliz cumpleaños los misioneros de la Misión México Chihuahua!!
Disfrute su día y reciba muchos cordiales saludos.
Somos los misioneros que trabajamos junto a Elder Fardos.
Y yo fui su compañero en Diciembre :D
Así que solo les conozco por fotografías.
No se preocupe por su hijo, aún lo sigo cuidando :)  (Fui el primero compañero de su hijo.)
Feliz cumpleaños! 
Happy birthday Sister Fardos, we haven't met, but we wish you a very happy birthday from the missionaries of the Mexico Chihuahua Mission !!
Enjoy your day as you receive many birthday greetings.
We are the missionaries who work alongside Elder Fardos.
And I was his companion in December :D
So I know you by photographs.
Do not worry about your son, I still take care of him! :) (I was the first companion of your son.)
Happy Birthday!
Con aprecio Elder López.

Hey, I heard it's your birthday! Happy Birthday, Mrs. Fardos! :D You've got a great son here. You should be proud of him. Have a wonderful day!
Elder Ward

Hola buenas tardes Mamá de Elder Fardos pues solamente le mandaba un mensaje para felicitarla por su cumpleaños y espero que se la pase muy bien a lado de sus seres queridos y que Nuestro Padre Celestial la bendiga siempre y que le regale muchos años mas de vida 😃 ....
Hello, good afternoon, Mama of Elder Fardos, I send you this message to congratulate you on your birthday and I hope that you will have a great time with your loved ones and that Our Heavenly Father will always bless you and give you many more years of life.

Happy Birthday 🎂.....
De: Hermana Santizo 

Feliz Cumpleaños mamá de Elder Fardos. I am in the same zone as your son. Have a great day. Your son is awesome, a great missionary and a great friend too.  :D
Élder Rendón
The Marvelous Mission
Mexico Chihuahua 

Hello sister! I just wanted to say happy birthday and hope you have a nice day
with the ones you love. Your son is a wonderful missionary and an amazing person,

and a great friend of mine too :) Hasta luego! :D

Happy Birthday Sister Fardos!!!! Your son is the best zone leader ever. I hope that this year is a great one!!!
Elder Knight


Monday, August 7, 2017

Happy Anniversary Lauren & Julian!

Hey Fam!

What the heck?!!  How are Lauren and Julian married for a year?  Like, what? I can't even like comprehend that! But hey, Happy Anniversary to you both!! 

This week was good - it was a week full of ups and downs... Haha!  But in the end, everything's really good!! :D

We had conference of all the leaders in the mission, and I really had a cool moment!  President asked why we are leaders, and I got a lot of answers here and there as the day went.  But I also thought about it in another way... When I think about how I got to this point?!... Like how I even arrived as a missionary? And something that I really realized was that God has His plans for all of us. He knows exactly where and when we should be born, who should be our family, and He really takes everything into account!  

I'm convinced that before this life, we had like an intereview with Him, and He told us something like 'look, life is hard, but I'm gonna put you with your best friends and they're gonna be your family, okay?'  I mean that's probably not really the way it went, but I like to think like that. Because basically I know that nothing is coincidence, who is in our family, who are our friends, everything :D That's not gospel doctrine so don't mistake it... Hahahah!  But, I can see when I look back, all of the dots connect, as though every experience, every interaction, everything and everyone had a purpose or a part in getting me here where I am today.  It makes me grateful for God's plan for me because I'm so happy to be here in Chihuahua!

We've seen a lot of miracles here in the Chuviscar Zone, o sea, my zone. It's pretty awesome here! :) And my comp and I are real good. Honestly, I've been pretty blessed with my comps!

But yea, life is good! I love Chihuahua and we're just putting in work here! It's pretty awesome, the mission life.

Bueno, I hope you guys have an awesome week!
Until next time!!!!
With Elder Templeton

A note from Nick's Mom:

Nick must be putting the word out about my approaching birthday because I started receiving messages from missionaries that are serving with him!  They are sweet greetings with warm birthday wishes, but the thing I love most is their warm regard for Nick!  Following are a few of the messages:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SISTER FARDOS your son is my best buddy. The dude is a legend. HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!
-Elder Johansen

Hola! Thank you so much Sister Fardos for raising such a good son, he's been a help to me many ways in the mission. Thanks for everything you do and have done. And also something a little extra HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I HOPE IT IS A GREAT ONE FOR YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope that all you wishes come true and that you can enjoy your special day of the year. Love you! 
Love Elder Epperson 

Happy Birthday to you happy birthday to you 🎂💗
Happy Birthday Sister Fardos wish you but the best of birthday wishes here from chihuahua Mexico. Id like to thank you Sister Fardos for raising Elder Fardos to be who he is now. He is one of the best missionaries i know also I claim him as my little brother He is a great leader and he loves you guys all so much. Thank you for being a great influence in his life and thank you for being a strong and faithful member of this wonderful gospel. I wish you nothing but the best sending my love from Chihuahua Mexico Thanks for everything Sister Fardos. 
Con amor, Hermana Brown Polamalu aka sister of Elder Fardos 💗🎂