Monday, July 28, 2014


JULY 28, 2014

So this week, i think Ive officially become a missionary. Why?  

   First, because this week, as me and Preciado went and knocked on this one house, there were these too super small dogs. like maybe chihuahuas. and they just started barcking at us but we didnt really pay any attention to them because thats just what dogs do. so we knocked but they werent home, so we start walking back to the cars, then these little dogs start darting towards are ankles! they start attacking us! so we start running back to the car away from these little dogs that are chasing us trying to tear our ankles. it was intense. little dogs can be viscous!

   And second, because yesterday as i was teaching a lesson to Sister Keller, a recent convert, she has two little kittens. and so im sitting on her couch teaching, and one of those little kittens climbs up on the arm rest next to me, then suddenly, leaps through the air, claws out, teeth bared, right at my face! luckily it was only the side of my face, and didnt really get me that bad. just two little claw marks around my ear. but it did draw blood! it was kinda scary. and ive never liked cats... but so after that we ended the lesson real quick then went to another members house and i cleaned it. so i dont die. So, if there is some sort of hazing that comes with being a missionary, i think this last week was it. so now im official! hopefully i wont have to go through another one once i get to Ecuador... but honestly who knows what ill be facing once i get there. small dogs might be the least of my worries!

   Last night, the missionaries in my Zone all taught a PMG class. there is one guy here who leaves tomorrow to the MTC and is going to Argentina. so when we split off into groups we made an all spanish group with him and then there was one other RM that spoke spanish. it was pretty fun. we just pretty much role played the whole time. This thursday, me and Preciado are teaching an English class to some of the spanish people here. so that should be fun! ive never taught english before. it will be interesting. but hopefully a good way to meet even more spanish and get then into the church and provide opportunities for teaching.

   We met this man, Domingo, who lives in Moapa. He is a less active thats going through some hard times. apparently the missionaries have been trying to get in touch with him for a while, but he was avoiding him. but we stopped by and caught him while he was outside. so he couldnt get out of this one! but it was really good. we talked with him for a while, and he really opened up to us. and said he was glad we finally caught him. we taught him from the BOM, then scheduled to come back again. so we'll be meeting with him this week, and teach him more, and hopefully get him to start coming back to church!

   We met with the Villezcas, which is another inactive family. We read together 1 Nefi 8, which is about Lehi's visions of the tree of life. and talked about it. it was a really good lesson, and the spirit was super strong. then at the end we asked them if they would start coming back to church, and they said they would! they seriously have such strong testimonies. its crazy that they are even inactive. but they are. but so they totally said they start coming again!... but then they werent there yesterday at church. it makes no sense. i know they know the church is true. so why arent they just coming to church!?

   We met another new family, the Rabines'. they are super nice. theyre from Peru. the dad raises horses. there are a lot of horses heres. and flies. but anyways, they are a super good family. all catolica. but we made contact with them and are going to come back and teach them. its just hard since they have a super busy schedule to find a time when they are all there so we can teach the whole family. but hopefully it will work out sometime this week!

   Yesterday, there was this guy from Columbia visiting one of the spanish families here. Henry. but he lives in utah now. but he is a super cool guy! he's older, but he is super friendly and funny and super good at missionary work and meeting new people. we went on a few visits with him after church before he had to head back to Utah. it was super good. by the end of our visits, i swear he was like best friends with the people we met. he's definetly a guy with some qualities to emulate.

   Well, a random fact about Nevada: the water is never cold. nope. ill fill up my water in the tap, then have to put it in the fridge to cool it down enough to even drink. then ill take it with me in the car. and after one visit. its just about boiling! its ridiculous. luckily many of the people here offer you water when you come into their house. so thats nice. and also, on the bright side, i never have to worry about cold showers!

   Well, i love you all! hope everything is going well!
Elder Taylor

Monday, July 21, 2014


JULY 21, 2014

So one week ago i arrived here in the Nevada Las Vegas West Mission! i got off the plane and the first thing i saw..... Slot machines! i just had to laugh when i saw them. welcome to Vegas! there were 18 people that came to Vegas with me, and 3 others are Visa waiters. One is going to Australia, one to New Zealand, and one to Samoa. so anyway us group of 16 elders and 2 sisters head through the airport to the exit and the mission pres. as we walk, we are virtually bombarded with advertisements and posters and theres music playing and it was crazy. SOOO much different then the MTC! it was kind of weird, not gonna lie.

  Well we found our mission pres, drove to his house, which is a really nice place in Vegas with palm trees and looks like a resort home. how deceiving, because thats not the accommodations us missionaries get! haha but we ate lunch there, then headed to a church for an orientation and then we got our companions! my companion is named Elder Preciado. He's originally from Columbia, but moved to the states when he was young. so he speaks both spanish and english fluently. after i met my new companion i loaded my things into a car and we began our hour drive out of the city to the small town of Logandale!

  Logandale is a small town only a few hours away from the utah border. i also cover two other small towns, Overton and Moapa. its fun here. its way hot tho! well because of the long drive, we didnt get to our apparment till late, so we didnt do any teaching that night. but come tuesday after our studies we hit it hard! now you may not think theres much to do in a small town (or 3 small towns). but youd be surprised. this week we've stayed really busy, with hardly any down time between lessons and visits. which is good, because honestly, down time isnt very fun. being busy feels much better. we teach in both spanish and english. its nice because i think im getting a better grasp of the lessons by teaching them in both languages.

  We teach a lot of less actives here. and a lot of part member families. i love visiting the spanish families. there is this one family, the Navarros. they're also from columbia. they are super sweet! and super strong in the church. We teach this boy, Scott Hill, whos 8 years old, in English. but he's a super sweet kid. his parents are members, but less active. so we try and include his parents in our lessons even tho we are technically teaching Scott. Us missionaries are sneaky. We have a recent convert, Myrtle Keller, who just got babtized after investigating the church for like 30 years or something like that. so thats way cool! but me and preciado are giving here the new member lessons. but the thing is, he's only been out for 4 months. so neither of us have ever given the new member lessons before! and they are basically the same as regular lessons, but with a few more things. so we just kind of wing it and rely on the spirit and on the members we bring with us.

  Pues, yo se que esto iglesia es verdadero. yo se que esto evangelio puede bendecir nuestras vidas. yo se que Joseph Smith fue un profeta llamado de dios, y estoy muy agredicido que yo tengo el evangelio en my vida y que yo tengo la oportunidad a compartirlo. yo se que dios nos ama mucho, y El quiere todo para nosotros, sus hijos.

  Well, im still working on my spanish, but its coming along. i actually find it easier to pray and bear my testimony in spanish though.

I love you all so much! remember that God is always there and willing to help us, all we have to do is ask in faith, and then remember to act. i hope everyone is doing well!

Elder Taylor

Sunday, July 13, 2014


JULY 13, 2014

Well, I've officially been here for over a week. and though those first few days dragged on, the 2 weeks have flown by! i leave the MTC tomorrow morning at 4:30. However, since my Visa isn't done yet, I will temporarily be serving in the Nevada, Las Vegas West mission! So that's pretty cool! I'm glad i wont be having to just wait here at the MTC until my Visa gets through. It will be nice actually getting out into the field. It's a little scary too though, to think my next lesson is going to be real. The pressure is on.

   This last week, we finished teaching our 3 investigators: Mateas, Jhonatan, and Hely. Mateas has been our easiest investigator, because he already had a solid religious background and good faith. He has agreed to get baptized! And even though it's fake, it's still pretty cool. We finally got Jhonatan to open up to us, and share why he was struggling so much with accepting the gospel. He just said he had never felt God or his love in his life. As he explained this, we testified of Gods love for us, his children, and how he all wants us to return to live with him. After that, he also agreed to get baptized!

   But the very best was teaching Hely. First off, Hely is a real investigator! So we were teaching real lessons to a real investigator. Intense. But as we taught our last lesson, we were just asking questions and seeing how she was feeling. She told us how she had felt the spirit before when she was way younger, but hadn't felt it again since. She was sad because she wanted to feel the spirit, but felt she must not be worthy to feel it again because of things shes done. As we continued talking, she told us this story: "Many years ago, while she was living in California, she was involved in a car accident. Her family was sitting their mini-van, stopped at a light. Her husband was driving, she was sitting in the passenger seat, and her children were in the back seats. Suddenly, a car rammed into the back corner of their van, where her 3 year old son was sitting. The whole van crumpled from the impact, folding around the child. As she looked back to her son, she saw her baby boy unconscious, with blood trickling from his mouth, nose, his ears, and his eyes. She cried out in anguish. Fervently she began praying, pleading for her son. As she prayed, she said a feeling of peace and comfort came over her; and she knew her son would be okay." As she told this story, the spirit was palpable in that room. We testified to her that that feeling she had was from God. That it was the Holy Ghost. And that God loved her, that He loved her so much to answer her prayer, and preserve her son. And i just felt so much love for her. It's hard to explain, but i really just felt pure love for Hely. It was a great feeling. I wish i could of had a little more time to work with her, and i sincerely hope she does decide to get baptized; because she said she would, if she felt all these things were true. And i think she will. I'm so grateful I got the opportunity to teach her. And in reality, for her to teach me.

   Friday, we had In-Field Orientation at Main Campus. It was a 9 hour ordeal. It was way long. I learned some really good things tho. Also, i saw those English Elders again: one of them called me "mate". So I'm pretty sure that makes us best friends. One of speakers at the Orientation was Elder Christensen, from The District. So that was pretty cool to see him in real life and hear him talk. Yesterday i got my hair cut. I asked for a trim. Apparently "trim" at the MTC means chop off an inch! Some people... But its alright, I still look good (obviously). haha Well thanks everyone so much for all the emails and letters! it means a lot.

Elder Taylor

Tuesday, July 8, 2014


JULY 8, 2014

Ya totally kidding. i just thought that would be a cliche way to start my first email as a missionary, in the MTC. But dont worry that didnt happen. no la e buscado.

  Anyways, wow this week has been crazy. what they tell you about how crazy the first few days in the mtc are is totally true. so much going on that you just kind of walk around in a daze following the crowd and staying by your companion. I'm on the west campus, which is smaller then the Main Campus, and only spanish speaking missions. so thats cool. Though it is always fun when we get to go to Main Campus and see all the other languages there. like today, i went there and talked to some Sisters going to France we just exchanged some pleasantries in french. im pretty sure they think im fluent. im kind of a big deal. haha no but it was cool. i also met some elders that just got here from England; they had such cool accents! one was from Leeds and the other around Manchester. We talked a little about futbol and which clubs we supported.

  Wednesday after i got dropped off i had my first class and met my companion and my district. they dont mess around here. My companion is Elder Luque. His family is from mexico, but he was born in california and then moved to utah when he was 8. there are eight elders in my district, counting me. all of them are 100% fluent in spanish. and i think all of them had spanish as their first language too. luckily we all speak english also, which is nice. its cool though talking to them in spanish and learning new words and how to say things. there is still so much i need to learn. the gift of tongues is definitely true, because there has been times i have understood people talking super fast when i know i usually dont. i cant wait till im fluent.

  Thursday was mainly just filled with classes. Friday was the Fourth of July, and so they gave us a special broadcast that night, where we listened to a speaker then watched the movie 17 Miracles. after, we got to go outside and watch the fireworks from the Stadium of Fire! that was super cool to be able to still celebrate the fourth.

  On sunday, we had a broadcast in the evening where we all went to the Main Campus. it was super cool, but the best part was that i saw Elder David Russell! one of my best friends from florida!! he's been here 3 weeks already, and i was hoping i would run into him! it was so good to see him. and really helped me. crazy how the Lord knows what we need and exactly when we need it.

  Monday was a great day. i just felt happy all day. we gave 3 mock lessons all in spanish to 3 different investigators. the best part is the happiness you feel after you get done teaching the lesson. again, just another testament to me from Heavenly Father about how important and good this work is. i cant wait to find out the feeling i will get after i teach a real investigator! i bet im going to be scared out of my mind, but its going to be the best! im so excited to get to Ecuador! Also, i gave my first blessing today. a blessing of comfort to Elder Luque. It was a great experience! the spirit i felt was amazing! i was so nervous for it, but it went well. im glad i had the opportunity to give it.

  Probably my favorite part of everyday thoughj is gym time. we've played soccer once and volleyball a couple times. volleyball is fun... but it can get frustrating when some of the other players arent that good.. i keep telling myself its just for fun, and to have Christ Like love. but sometimes its difficult. its definetly not the same as those beach volleyball games we used to play..

  Well, sorry if this email was a little sporadic. I love and miss you all.

Elder Taylor