Wednesday, September 10, 2014


Hola familia!

I am sending this Wednesday because we stopped using the computers halfway through and the draft didn't transfer to my iPad, so I got permission to finish it really quick on the computer!

The rest of this week (since I just emailed you on Wednesday) was SO busy! We found out Thursday that we were volunteered to help set up for the wedding of a couple in the ward in the gym. Of course, we don't have a problem with service, and it wouldn't be the first time we set up tables and chairs for an event, so we just went ahead with it. Well, it definitely ended up being more than what we expected. They needed helping setting up the decorations, too. So, we put our creative minds together and planned out how to use our limited supply of wedding decorations to our advantage. And guess who got put in charge of our little crew group of six missionaries because he's the only one with wedding experience? This guy. Thanks Alyssa! ;) Not a good idea. If there is anything that has gotten worse, it's my OCD, so of course I was running around all over the place. Ha In the end, though, it turned out really well and everyone at the wedding was saying that they loved it and that they didn't even feel like they were in a gym. I wish we could have had more lights for the dance floor, but it worked out—although the pictures don't do it justice. Not bad for a 24 hour notice. To add to it, when we got to the wedding, they hadn't planned the schedule. It was obvious because right after the ceremony that was kind of awkward, they stepped back to the dance floor (not even the center) and started
their "first dance" with all the lights on. Ha Even more awkward. Plus, the DJ wasn't ready and the groom was tripping all over her dress because she hadn't tied up her dress yet. Ha We got past it though and they asked me to put together a schedule, too. I felt like the ultimate wedding planner, and just as they got the program done and moved on to just the typical dancing of the night, it was time to go. We had a blast doing it, although it was a lot of stress and whatnot.

During that all, one of the best experiences of my mission happened. We had to finish up Thursday afternoon before we had to get to lessons, but we needed more material, because they didn't have anything but white tulle. So we remembered that the Relief Society closet was open and decided to take a really quick 2-minute break to go raid the closet for more wedding decorations. It was SO funny! We all went running in at the same time. And although it was definitely a had-to-be-there moment, if you can imagine 4 elders and 2 sisters jammed in a closet ravaging through everything at the speed of light, maybe you can join me in my laughter. We were cracking up so much as everything was flying everywhere and we walked back into the gym with bags of stuff as the groom just stared at us with a where-in-the-world-did-all-that-come-from look on his face. It was priceless. We heard his bride ask him later where it all came from and he was just like, "I have no idea." It was great. All the wedding attendants told us that we needed to be wedding planners. Ya, no. That was good enough for me! ha

The investigators I talked about on Wednesday are still doing well. Juan finally got to come to church and he loved it! It was perfect, because the final speaker talked about how we need to really practice what we preach and he told us before that that is what he was looking for. He is SO awesome! He loved church, and it was probably my favorite talk from the whole mission! She did a great job and the spirit was super strong. He is totally set for his baptism on Tuesday! :)

We finally found Ramon (the smoker) again, and he actually took my advice and is down to 10 cigarettes a day instead of 20. You can see a complete change in his countenance! We were so excited to see him. Although he is going to Catholic Church weekly because he thought church was too long for him, he is progressing and we will still check in with him. He said he plans on completely stopping, getting a job, buying new clothes and everything. He looks motivated and we are so happy for him. You can tell it's genuine. So proud of him! He's not interested in the message right now, but when his mind is cleared up in the future, I know he will be. :) Please pray for him!

Along with regular teaching appointments throughout the week, we continue to see miracles, and as an added bonus, we've been cooks, too! :) We made s'mores as a district for P-Day activity and then we got to help a part-member family make tamales last night! The s'mores were delicious and it was hiliarous making them. I'm glad I have so many good memories finishing off with this district. We spend so much time together...we're basically family. The family was blown away that I knew what I was doing with the tamales. ha It cracks me up when people don't believe that I am Hispanic. I have really learned to harness my roots out here! Plus, I have made MANY tamales. Before, during, and I'm sure after my mission, too. I love tamales! It's my last dinner with them tonight, so they wanted to make it special. :)

I sure do love this work. I have been studying the Atonement lately and the importance of the understanding of justice and mercy. As I have gone throughout my mission, I have come to notice that we really need to help each other understand the need for the Atonement. Just like the Fall of Adam and Eve was necessary for us to progress in life, so is the Atonement necessary for us to return to our Heavenly Father again. It is such a blessing to really come to internalize it. Justice had to come about as a result of the Fall, and as the Savior of us all, Jesus Christ satisfied those demands of justice and provides the mercy necessary to cleanse us of our sins. However, we are not just saved by mercy alone. What Christ did for us opened the path back to God. Now our purpose in life is to harness that mercy and really apply it to our lives. We need to LIVE the gospel. Not just believe it. If we truly love Jesus Christ and God, we will not let what he sacrificed for us become irrelevant. We will take it and follow his example. Have faith—believe AND act. Repent. Be baptized to enter into that path. Receive the gift of the Holy Ghost to help us along the way. And finally, endure to the end. Faith is not a weekly thing we participate in only on Sundays. It is a daily communion with God. It is scripture study, prayer, and really living what we have been taught. Not one of us is perfect in this journey we are taking back to God, but we can use the power of the Atonement to cleanse us and lead us through our daily trials that sometimes seem impossible to overcome. I have experienced those times, and I will continue to experience them. But just as I have been taught and shared before, it wasn't easy for Jesus Christ-why should it be easy for us? I know this is the truth, and from personal experience I know the power this gospel has. It has molded me to be what I am destined to be. I love you all and I appreciate all your love and support. I will talk to you once more next week. Until then, please work on internalizing the power of the Atonement—just as I am. We can do it-let's work together. :) Love you!

-Elder Gallego

"It is my testimony that many of the deepest regrets of tomorrow can be prevented by following the Savior today. If we have sinned or made mistakes—if we have made choices that we now regret—there is the precious gift of Christ's Atonement, through which we can be forgiven. We cannot go back in time and change the past, but we can repent." President Dieter F. Uchtdorf

P.S. Busy weekend = lots of pictures coming your way! :)

1 comment:

  1. You are invited to read our uplifting blog about missions coming full circle. Our featured story (opening tomorrow) is applicable to all missionaries past, present, and future.