Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Hola familia!

This week was awesome! We are seeing so many milagros here that it is insane. The Lord is literally just placing people in our path. It is so stressful being a part of this work because there is so much to do, but I wouldn't change it for anything. I love being a part of it and it has been a blast working with Elder Curtis. He is a great companion and we teach well together, so it feels good to be decent (at least we seem to think ;)) mouthpieces for the Spirit.

 I am humbled to be a part of this work. I just step out of the way and let the Spirit guide. Prayer has been a HUGE part of our work lately, and it really helps us involve the Lord in HIS work. Makes sense, right? As we are lead to where we need to go this week, we have experienced more success than either of us have ever seen in our whole mission. Every lesson this week went smoothly and was Spirit-led. Each person we shared with was sincere with us and we were with them. Those who have been listening are actually acting. There were 8 people there at church on Sunday. That is more than I or my companion have ever seen. And it's not about the number. We didn't care that that may have been a record in our missions, but rather we just had so much joy that they are really applying the message. We are so happy for them! :)

General Conference was great! I hope you all loved it as much as I do. If you want to catch up on it, just visit :) I feel like I have definitely fallen behind with keeping you updated on the investigators' names so that you can please keep them in your prayers.

We are teaching the Guadarrama family (mainly Henry, Daniel, and Jairo) and they are so cool! They were a referral from the Bishop because their son was having issues. They have come so far. When we first met them, they were all very depressed and didn't know what to do with their son/brother who has chosen to become addicted to drugs and has gotten himself into a lot of bad experiences. He started when he was 12 and now he is 16 and his mind is so far gone. We can really tell how drugs can hurt not only your body, but your family as well. To this I always revert back to the basics we learned in Elementary School. Don't Do Drugs. The other boys, Daniel and Henry are doing amazing. They both came to church yesterday and Henry even got up to bear his testimony. He shared that he feels it is the true church and for that he is going to get baptized and then his brother, and then the rest of the family. It was awesome. They're GREAT kids. Just have had some struggles in the past. So please keep them in your prayers that their parents will get involved, too, so that they can receive the peace that the boys are experiencing. :)

Also, Guadalupe, the one I briefly shared about a couple weeks ago...the one from doing really well, too! She came to church right after meeting us, but we were having a hard time meeting with her because she is searching for a job. She came to church again yesterday, though, because we still stayed in contact and we finally had our first lesson with her. She is very well prepared as well, and said she has been searching for an answer and really wants to know. She said she hasn't felt anything yet, but we know it's because she now has a Book of Mormon to really test the validity of this church. We are happy for her! So please keep her in your prayers that she finds a job...or else she has to go back to Chicago :(...and that she can receive an answer soon. She is preparing for baptism, as well as the Guadarramas. :)

I'm sorry if this email is just a boring update...but I would really appreciate it if you could help them out with your prayers. :)

Heidi is the girlfriend of a less-active member of the ward. We actually found her through Facebook and after teaching her a little bit, we came to found out that she lives with a member family! ha So she is SO prepared as well. She gets so into our lessons and is so sad when we have to leave. We love that family and we are meeting with the boyfriend, too. She, too, is preparing for baptism soon, but they need to be married first. They have a son together and both want to be married, they just need to make it happen. So please pray that they continue to progress and that they get married so Heidi can fully accept something she says, "she has been waiting her whole life for." Another amazing family.

There is also Ely! She is the daughter of her less-active mother. We went by to give her mom a blessing and met her and she is awesome! She says she wants to finally "do something for herself." She has gone through it all before but didn't get baptized before because she stopped reading and praying and such, so she stopped progressing. But after the night we helped them, the confidence that whole family has in us has completely changed and now the mom is planning on coming back and bringing her daughters. We are going to have a Family Home Evening with them tonight about the plan of salvation, and we're really excited for that. :) She said she really wants to find out that it is true and she has been reading and praying a lot. Couldn't make it to church because of work, but she's fixing that! Please pray she can get an answer to her prayers! Yet another very SOLID family. :)

And Patty! She is amazing. We love talking with her! She is the Aunt of the referral from the house where the fight broke out, but she just loves us! Ever since her dad died, she has a hard struggle in life, but she finds so much peace in our message and has been reading and praying and going to church and really likes the message. Please just pray that she can receive peace and hope in knowing that she will see him again. She is awesome and really likes that we show we care. It's because we really do! I love each and every one of these people we are teaching, and I really do want them to succeed life. Whether it be through this message or not (although I know this message is the way!), I just hope they find more peace in meeting with us. :) LOVE THEM ALL!!

I may seem to perky and happy in this email, but it is just because I absolutely love the work right now. Not going to lie, when I first got moved it was SUPER hard getting used to it all over again, but I buckled down, forgot myself, and went to work with my comp this week and the miracles we are lucky to be a part of just erase that confusion and help strengthen me even more. It's awesome! The more I forget myself, the more converted I become, and the happier I get. :)

Funny moment from the week? Okay! Well...this week I got sick :( despite the sickness, though, I worked as hard as I could (after I rested a little to recuperate). Well, I ended up losing my voice all of Tuesday and Wednesday. It was the first time that has ever happened to me! It was hilarious. The worst part...we were super busy both those days, so we had to go to lessons anyway. So, I literally taught lessons whispering. Talk about giving room to feel the Spirit haha. My companion says he felt like he was yelling every time he went to speak because I literally had to whisper ha. In one lesson, I wanted to share so much that I actually got light-headed and almost passed out. haha It was a joke! The following day, so we didn't have the awkward moment of one of the missionaries passing out in a lesson, I let Elder Curtis do most of the teaching, and we brought more members with us so he at least had a companion ha. When we tried to teach the Guadarramas, Jairo and Daniel couldn't stop laughing when I would talk, and in return neither could we ha so I didn't say much for that one, but the Spirit still remained strong during the week. :)

Well, I am sorry this email has been super long. It makes up for the last two weeks! I wish there was enough room to tell you about everyone, but that will have to do for now. We are having such a great time sharing the gospel because this message is a message of joy and happiness. We have to represent the message we carry. Heidi asked us this week why we are always so happy, and that's how we responded. It's the gospel! It's just so great!

Now I invite you to reach out and share the gospel-ESPECIALLY during this special week of Easter. The Church will be making a huge movement and I am sure most of you have already seen it, but they are trying to reach out to as many as possible to share this message this week, and so they started a hashtag #BecauseofHim and made an amazing video to help us remember Christ during this special season. It is all over Facebook, and the Church will even have that video as the main video on YouTube on Easter Sunday! So many people are going to see it! :) They also made a website to share our message of this Easer time! We are really hoping that a LOT of people get to see it and feel the amazing spirit from it. Please, all of you watch it! It's soooooo good. :) And please share it. Post inspirational Jesus Christ images and such on Facebook with the hashtag #BecauseofHim and share what you have Because of Him. :) The blessings are evident and we need to share it with all those around us. We can all be missionaries, as I have said main times. I just love the work because it really does change lives. I hope you make time to be a part of this so that more people's lives can be blessed during this remarkable time of year. Here is the link to the video and website or you can visit the hashtag #BecauseofHim on Facebook to learn more. For those Spanish speakers...#GraciasaÉl :) (To make É you press Alt plus 144 in the windows system.)

I sure do love you all very much and I hope you enjoy your Easter Sunday in remembrance of our resurrected Savior. I know He lives, and I know that Because of Him we will all live again after death. I love you all and invite you to check it out-I'll be posting things on my page for sure! :) Happy Easter! Cuídense!

-Elder Gallego

"Tired, sweaty, bloodied, Jesus did only what a Redeemer could do: He forgave His murderers, comforted the criminal suffering next to Him, and trusted in His Father. When His sacrifice was complete, Jesus willed Himself to die as only God's Son could do. He gave up the ghost, but His death wasn't an end. It was the beginning for all of us."


Hola familia!

This will be the craziest letter you will ever read from me. This.
Week. Was. Insane. I'm definitely back in Santa Ana, that's for sure!

Before getting to the insanity of this week, sorry for the earthquake.
We are just working so hard that we are really "shaking things up in
Santa Ana." Haha the miracles are coming for sure and we are just
meeting so many people that are actually progressing that I can't even
explain it all in an email.

For example, while I was packing my companion out of a parking spot
(clearly not just a lame mandatory or coincidental rule, you'll see
:)), I contacted this lady, Guadalupe. I offered to give her a card to, and she's like, "you're Mormon, right?"

"Yes, I am."

"I just moved here from Chicago, and I almost got baptized there
because I love the church, but I had to move."

Miracle! We are witnessing the tender mercies of The Lord daily here.
She gave us her number because she can't accept visitors, but she
actually answered the phone later on and came to church! It was
awesome. She is going to progress rapidly for sure. That was just one
of the many miracles we are experiencing. We need more missionaries! I
know we just had a wave, but we need another! I am just so overwhelmed
with all the work we have right now. We need more missionaries to help
us out, please! Everyone get out here! :) so many people are yearning
for the truth! The mission is having the best month it has ever with a
Facebook and all since the Bowen's arrived. The Lord wasn't kidding
when he said he was going to hasten his work. Get out here if you
aren't already and stay out here if you are. We need you!

Other than that we have been caught up in a few crazy moments. We went
to give a blessing to a woman who's husband passed away. We arrived
and met a 20 year old member from Texas (a young woman who is the only
member in her family) and she introduced us to the family. There were
many people there, most were crying, and those who were not were
marked by swollen eyes from the same. We met them, and explained
priesthood and blessings.

We laid our hands upon the head of the woman who's husband died, the
room filled with the bowed heads of mourning family members, and
pronounced a blessing. Right in the middle of the blessing, while my
companion was still speaking, with our hands still on her head and the
room still in quiet reverence, there was a rustle and some noise from
the backyard. I heard one of the aunts yell, "están peleando!". She
said it in a rushed voice, and then repeated it louder. "They're
fighting! They're fighting!" she screamed. Everyone jumped out of
their seats and ran into the backyard. The woman we were blessing,
apologized to us and God as she jumped up and left my companion and I
both with our hands now floating in midair and shocked looks on our
faces. The member, with her face buried in her hands, was shocked, as
was everyone else, that her cousin and her uncle, who had both been
drinking, were fighting and going at each other in the backyard. We
were left in the living room with the two young girls, the 16 year old
son, and another woman. We directed everyone outside to avoid hearing
the threats and awful language that was being thrown back and forth in
the kitchen. We walked outside and the member, and the others that
were with us, were crying and apologizing for the circumstance. We did
our best to comfort them, and began to talk to try to distract them
and take their minds off of what was going on.

Shortly after the adults filed out of the house, and as they split the
two men up that were fighting, one of them insulted the other and he
snapped again. He started screaming and trying to push through the
crying family members that were holding him back, at this point the
one who had insulted him started at him and this time, we were right
in the middle. It was definitely crazy!

After getting them separated, they left in their cars, each going a
different direction. The woman who we were giving the blessing was
then frantic. She was having a hard time breathing, and her daughters
and family lead her back inside and were trying to comfort her. She
wanted the blessing again. We gave her a blessing of comfort, and said
a prayer with the whole family after sharing a short message in an
attempt to bring the Spirit back. As we were about to leave we decided
to sing "abide with me tis eventide", and the Spirit returned and was
so strong. We don't have the best voices, but it felt like there were
angels there helping my companion and I as we sang to this traumatized
group of family members. The spirit that we left was so strong....

The next day was the funeral, and they invited us to come. We showed
up after our meetings that we had and greeted the family. They were
happy to have us there and, to our surprise, they turned off the music
in the funeral home and made everyone who was standing and conversing
sit down. They kept saying, "the Hermanos are here, the Hermanos are
here," and they told us to go up and give a speech. haha We were more
than surprised, but it was humbling. We bore sincere testimonies about
the Plan of Salvation and promised them that the peace that they so
desperately needed and were searching for can not be found in any
place other than in Christ. The things that the world turns to in
search of relief and comfort will always fade away, but Christ will
not. We then both sang "Be Still My Soul" and said a prayer. It was a
humbling experience. They invited us back to their house later that

Although it may be happening through tragic experiences, we seeing so
many miracles here.

Another crazy story from this same week. We were given a referral to
go visit the mom of family and give her a blessing. We went over there
and got to know the family, My companion knew some of them already,
and we met the teenage daughter, who seems to be a miracle. She was
almost baptized with the other Elders, and wants to get back into it,
so we have another appointment with her thursday.

Shortly after giving the blessing, we were talking to the teenage
daughter, and out of no where the mom, who can barely walk, comes
stumbling out of the bedroom with a horrified look on her face. She
was gasping for breath and her eyes were so wide they were about to
pop out. The family jumped to their feet and rushed over to her, she
was behind me, and I and my companion got up and I grabbed her as she
was about to fall. She was crying and still couldn't breathe. The same
teenage daughter, screaming and crying, ran over to her mom and
supported her while we moved the tall chairs and grabbed a smaller
chair for her to sit on. My companion moved it under her and they
lowered her into it. We (or at least we as the elders) still had no
idea what was going on, we were simply trying to help in the situation
that we were in.

We look in the other room where the mom had just stumbled out and saw
the other daughter's husband laying on the floor with a bloody rag
dabbing his back and rolling back and forth. The daughter came out and
was trying to comfort her mom when the teenage daughter started
screaming at her and telling her not to touch the mom, and accusing
her that this was all her fault. This part here is from my companion,
because I didn't really know how to word it without it sounding
awkward and inappropriate, so here goes...

"A member of the family pulled off the frantic teenage daughter and
pushed her into the arms of my companion. He embraced and supported
her as she sobbed, normally with a teenage girl and a missionary such
contact would throw a red flag in my mind, but I didn't even think
twice, and have no doubt that he did the right thing." I'm glad he
understood...I for sure was caught off guard, but in that situation I
couldn't tell the other family member "no" was all so

Now that the mom was sat down and taken care of, my companion went in
to see the daughters husband. He had been stabbed in the back by
something, he said it was a knife, but it looked as if it were
pronged. There was one place where it punctured, but rather than one
slit as a knife would leave there were two, perpendicular to make a
sort of "T" shape. He asked him what happened, and he wouldn't tell
him. He asked him if he could look at it, and he let him. He ended up
going to the hospital, but he was able to walk to the car to be driven
there, and the bleeding was controlled. Evidently, he was choking his
wife and she stabbed him to get him off her...not sure what the truth
is, though.

Elder Curtis and I spent the next 30 minutes trying to calm down the
teenage daugter. She was frantic and sobbing and hyperventilating. We
said a prayer with her, we did breathing exercises, and ended up
singing while she was later in the arms of her older sister, and she
calmed down.

We all went in the room with the mom, and the spirit of it all
completely changed as we prayed again and ended up all laughing and
joking around after the daughter and her husband went to the
hospital... Bipolar night. Latino families O.O...

So that was as brief as I could get about the insane week. It was
really cool feeling my first earthquake here! Apparently there have
been over 150 aftershocks since the big one. I was on my bed talking
to Elder Richards on exchanges when it happened, though, so it didn't
feel too bad for me. And I was further from the epicenter- evidently
it shook pretty bad there, but all is well!

A lot more happened, but those stories will have to wait for another
time. I had my last President interview before my final one. :( it's
going to too fast. Anxiety attack! Ha it love this work! The hard
times continue...I may be having the hardest battle inside in my whole
mission, but I'm maki it through. I find joy in knowing that this
isn't about me. It's about the ones I come to love that I am helping
back to our Heavenly Father. Love you all and hope you, too, are
looking for ways to share this amazing gospel with those around you.
Take care and talk to you soon! Cuídense!

-Elder Gallego

"Life is largely worthless unless it is held together, given shape and
form by some great purpose, and there is no greater purpose than that
of helping our fellowmen as well as ourselves to attain the glorious
salvation which our Lord has promised to his obedient children."


Hola familia!

So this week was another one of those weird weeks where everything
just kind of got thrown together.

To start out the week, Tuesday night, a girl ran out in front of us
driving and we hit her in our car. That was tragic experience.
Luckily, I was already covering the brakes because there was also a
truck coming towards us on a narrow street. She jetted out into the
street behind a big car, I slammed on the brakes and she spun around
really quick. She ran into the front right corner of the van and she
went spinning to the ground. We still hit her pretty hard, but luckily
she wasn't injured. She hopped back up, ran to the other side of the
street (chasing a ball, of course) and pretended like nothing
happened. Shaking from what JUST happened, we walked over to her and
she and her friends acted like it wasn't even a big deal. We're were
just like..." just got hit by a car!!!" It was weird
how calm everyone was. We're thinking that maybe it happens often with
her? It was clearly her fault, but we still needed to talk to her
mother about it in case anything popped up. When we got to her house
and explained the situation, her mother basically just chastised her
in front us and grounded her. She was lucky to just walk away from it
with a red mark on her leg.

Looking back on the experience we can tell that we are being watched
out over. If she had ran out into the street even one second earlier
or if we were there one second later, she would have gone under the
car and been killed because there was no way we would have been been
able to stop in time. It all happened so fast, and I surprised myself
at how fast I reacted to the experience. I know that we are protected.
Thank goodness everything is alright. We left our number, and thought
maybe to share a message, but the circumstances just didn't seem to
permit it ha. We were all shaken up for the rest of the day for sure,
but it's all good, thank goodness!

This week was spent being rejected and all of our appts falling
through once again, but we keep going! Elder Silvester is awesome and
we are both patient in knowing that as long as we are doing what we
are supposed to, we will be led to those truth seekers - or even they
will be led to us! Like what happened yesterday. :)

Sacrament was about to start, and out of nowhere, this guy, Freddie
Magallon, shows up and asks if it's the right ward for him. Apparently
he has just moved into our area, and he was investigating The Church
in Oceanside, CA. He and his wife and 3 daughters really liked The
Church and he went out to look for it. He is perfectly bilingual, but
his wife prefers Spanish, so we are going to be sure to hold onto him.
:) We don't understand how he isn't already a member. He was SO
involved in all the classes and acted just like a member. He was
introducing himself to everyone, chatting with everyone, and was just
all around amazing. We were shocked. We know that God sent him to our
ward that day to lift our spirits. We're excited to work with him...

Well...Elder Silvester is.....because......after more than a Well, technically, I left. Yes,
after over a year in my new home of Anaheim 11, the reign of Elder
Gallego has ended. Thursday night I received a call that I was
released as District Leader and Trainer, and I have been called to be
a Zone Leader. And get this! I am going back to Santa Ana! I am not
technically back in Santa Ana 5 where I began my mission a year and a
half ago, but the ward is in my zone. So I will be going on exchanges
there. With Elder Richards! He can't seem to get away from me. Haha
I'm so excited to be back. It feels good. :)

I'm very sad that I have had to leave Anaheim, but I know my time is
up. It has been an amazing year and I have learned so much and grown
so much. I cannot wait to go back and visit my home, but I know that I
will love it here, too. Just have to keep my spirits up. The tears
have been was a really hard goodbye to everyone...but just
as one of the members wrote in my journal I have them all sign, it's
not a "goodbye", just a "see you later". It is weird to be in a new
area and starting over again, but I know it is what The Lord wants me
to do in my mission, and it is such a blessing to be a part of it
wherever I am. And my new companion, Elder Curtis is awesome! We are
going to have so much fun. I will miss my son, but we will be reunited

So, Anaheim, you've treated me well...I'll be back. I love you all
back home as well. I have more than one home! Mesa, Santa Ana 5,
Anaheim, and soon to be __________. Not this time. ;) I love you all
and I hope you are well! Hope to hear back soon. Now I just have one
big thorn in my side...I've been lucky in my mission not having to
pack, because it only leads to two very uncomfortable things for me.
Tears and wrinkled shirts...

-Elder Gallego

"If you don't fit in, then you're probably doing the right thing." Unknown

P.S. All the pics from the week are on my camera, but I'll be putting
them on Facebook soon, so keep an eye's a quick pick of my
new companion and I!


Hola familia!

This week was a regular week. Nothing too crazy happened. A lot of
finding and trying to search out those elect! We were rejected A LOT
this week, but we found joy in the work and just kept going! Got to
keep going all the way up until the very end! So not much to talk
about this week, it literally was just a lot of finding and door
knocking and regular missionary duties.

Claudia is doing great. She asked me to confirm her yesterday in
church and it just so happened that Gospel Principles was about the
Holy Ghost this week. President Villegas was there and taught the
class. He did an excellent job - I always love the way he teaches and
his Spanish is so crisp and formal. Nothing better than a good,
understandable teacher. She really enjoyed church and is starting to
feel more and more comfortable. She and her father took us out to
dinner this week to IHOP and it was a blast. The food was delicious as
usual...duh, what's better than breakfast for dinner? And we talked
about missionary work. She said she might even want to be a missionary
herself if she is guided to do so. That would be so cool! She'd be a
great missionary because she has such a great conversion story. She's
doing well, and we are excited to watch her continue to grow!

Transfers are this week, and it seems that all is set up more than
ever for my time to come to a close here in Anaheim. Of course, we
won't know until the end of this week for sure, but it all just seems
like that's where it's headed. Not going to lie, I'm a little scared!
I don't know anything BUT Anaheim 11th. I wasn't in Santa Ana 5 for
long, so although I still love that ward as well, this has been the
ward where I have grown and learned the most. They really have become
my family, and as I was thinking about leaving again last night, just
like last time, I had a little panic attack. Just can't think about it
and I need to understand that I will be called where I am needed. I
have a sure testimony if that.

Funny moment from this week was when we had dinner with Hna Sanchez
from Peru. I have grown very close with their family, and we are
basically their children - more so me because I have been around so
long ha. She is the one that says she has been praying that I stay
here since she met me, and my staying shows a sure answer to her
prayers...can't really argue with that. Ha So whenever it is brought
up that I may be leaving, she goes on her rant about how things
shouldn't be that way. This week she even went as far as to say that
as soon as I leave, there is going to be an apostasy. Haha She's so
funny. I sure will miss all my families here, but we'll see! I've
stayed around this long, who knows? I could be around until the end of
my mission. At least that is what everyone is saying ha.

Well, like I said, not much to talk about today. Thank you for the
packages you sent last week, I loved them, and I am safeguarded by the
"pinch police" because of the lovely socks. Thanks for the love and
support! I love you all and hope you have a wonderful St. Patty's Day!

-Elder Gallego

"The past is to be learned from but not lived in. We look back to
claim the embers from glowing experiences but not the ashes. And when
we have learned what we need to learn and have brought with us the
best that we have experienced, then we look ahead and remember that
faith is always pointed toward the future." Elder Jeffrey R. Holland