2 Nephi 22: 2,3

Behold, God is my salvation; I will trust, and not be afraid; for the Lord Jehovah is my strength and my song; he also has become my salvation. Therefore, with joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

February 27, 2012 Reaping the Fruits of a Positive Attitude


Well folks I know that last week my email was short and not too sweet. This week we had Zone Conference and Pres. Pinho talked a little about the importance of writing to our families. He started to cry and say that our moms pray for us everyday and they have the right to know what´s going on in our lives. I felt kinda bad so this week will be much better.

Like I said this week we had Zone Conference. It was really good. Pres. Pinho talked about our desires and how we need to be a standard to the nations in everything that we do as missionaries. I´m currently studying the missionary chapters of the book of Alma so it was perfect because I kept thinking of all the amazing examples that we have of powerful missionaries that showed no fear in the face of a nation of nephite killers.

That ties into the division I did this week with the couple in my district. They are two really new missionaries, Elder Neilson and Elder Hendricks. During the division Elder Neilson had difficulty controlling the situation and getting to the point so we studied together about the power and authority of our calling. It was an amazing study session and we both learned a lot about our mantle as representatives of Jesus Christ and how we can´t be afraid to testify and challenge everyone to put the Restored Gospel in practice and follow the example of or savior into the waters of baptism. Elder Neilson and Elder Hendricks, after a few difficult months, now have a really good teaching group and should baptize a lot in March.

I really enjoy working as a district leader because I have been following and enormous change in our own area and in the other areas of our district. Our district was baptizing very little and the missionaries were all a bit disanimated, but over the past few weeks everything has been changing and it all had to start with our attitudes. Attitude changes everything! If you plant a bad seed in the beginning all you are going to reap are bad fruits. The truth is is that it is alot easier to be negative. Like a weed, negativity grows without being nurtured and spreads and suffocates everything around it. A negative attitude can destroy tons of work. It goes down to the root and puts everyone down. On the contrary, positivity stengthens and supports everything around it. Unfortunately, a positive attitude is hard to keep. You have to nurture it and you have to be able to pick yourself up when things don´t go well. But in the end the fruits of that good seed are so much better.

Our teaching group is going really well. This week we have planned to baptize Jefferson, Silvana and Bruno. They are all excited and decided to enter the water but they all are facing different challenges. Jefferson is way shy and knows very few young men in the ward but with the support of his part member family that all want him to baptize he is progressing.

Silvana is now facing some new challenges but is still moving forward. Her son Bruno, who is also marked to be baptized, is having some bad influences messing up his responsibilites as the man of the house and Silvana who works at night now has her exhusband taking care of the kids. He is trying to stop her from being baptized and wants her to start living with him again and break just about every commandment you can thing of. She told us that she wasn´t sure if she still wanted to be baptized. Yesterday we finally met the ex and shut him down as far and putting the stops on Silvanas baptism is concerned. We testified and challenged him to change is life and he rejected the invitation. She was able to see that he has absolutely now interest in changing his life and following Christ for now, and that if she decides to follow the path he is offering it will only destroy her and her family. At the end of the visit she said, "I will be baptized on Saturday!" Right on Silvana!

After we baptize the people we have in the next two weeks we don´t have anything. Well, we didn´t have anything. This week some of our old investigators appeared again and are more willing to fulfill commitments now. We also received a ton of referrals from the members of our ward and we have a new teaching group to get ready for April! Haha! Gotta plan ahead.

Well that´s it for this week. I leave you with a big toothy grin (you can´t really see it but be sure that it´s there). Hope all is well and just a reminder March 9th is coming up. For those who don´t know, March 9th is my birthday and I expect presents! haha! Just kidding! Cards would be just fine. Love you all!

Elder MacLane Taggart

Monday, February 20, 2012

February 20, 2012 Still Goin'

Hey Everyone,

Well I´m at the worst computer in the world today and I have been
trying to send pics to you guys for the past 40 minutes without
success and now i have no time left. Sorry the message is so short.
I´m happy, healthy, and loving the mission. Hope all is well.

Much Love,
Elder Taggart

Monday, February 13, 2012

February 13, 2012 Who Taught You to Pray Like That?


This week went really well. We are teaching a lot of really good people and the ward is super excited to work. We are getting really good referrals and our ward mission leader is ready to work. All things are looking sunny, even though the rain came back.

Our incomplete family that we are reactivating and baptizing the rest is going well. The women didn´t go to church but the kids went to the primary activity on Saturday and came to church on their own Sunday. They loved it. Mauricio, Joanna, Ana Beatrix, and Gustavo are all marked for baptism on the 26th. Ana Beatrix is definitely the most intelligent and spiritual and is helping the rest. We are going to involve the Releif Society more to get the moms back in church.

We´re working with a new family. The mom is named Silvana. She is a really wonderful lady who is really spiritual. She is a little slow but has a ton of faith. She recently separated from her husband and moved into her old house that her drug addict kids trashed and left abandoned for several years. We are teaching three of her kids: Willian, Silvia, and Bruno. They are all open and things are going really well. Silvana works at night and gets home at 7am. This sunday she showed up at church and we were so suprised! They loved church and later that night we had an amazing family home evening with them and a bunch of members. The plan is to baptize them on March 3rd.

We are also working with an awesome young man named Davi who is progressing really well and we are working with him for baptism in March. We read 2 Nephi 31 with him and he accepted the baptismal invitation without hesitation.

Something horrible happened with our investigator Monica. Friday night her exhusband attacked and tried to kill her. We went to see her on Saturday. He broke her hand and stabbed her in the back with a broken beer bottle. She has a huge black eye. She was destroyed physically and spritually. She is way disanimated and didn´t go to church. We are trying our best to help her but it is a super difficult situation. She is a recovering drug addict also and isn´t having very much success in stopping to smoke or drink. I feel so bad for her. We really need to save her.

Well on a lighter note, funny story. At the family home evening on Sunday someone invited an evangelical preacher. In the end he gave the closing prayer (evangelical style). Our recent convert Ray was there too and after the prayer he asked the preacher "Are you deaf?" Preacher: "No, why?" Ray: "Because you were yelling during your prayer. Who taught you to pray like that? Your pastor? God´s not deaf." The preacher was ready to fight with him but another member stepped in and changed the subject. I could not believe that Ray did that! He is such a quiet guy. I think that was a sign that he will be a really awesome missionary. haha!

Anway, that´s the news. Hope all is well. Much love!
Elder MacLane Taggart

Monday, February 6, 2012

February 6, 2012 Where's the Water

Well folks,

One more week has come and gone. I have exactly 4 months until I´ll be back in SLC, scary!

Anyway I mentioned last week that it was raining alot. Well this week has been the opposite. It is so HOT! I have never sweated so much in my life. To add to it our neighborhood is without water. Compicated but managable.

Monday we had an awesome district activity. A sister in our ward wanted to make lunch for us and it was a banquet! Incredible foot and after the lunch we played around in her garden. Elder Lemes, an old friend of mine, accidentely lost one of her pet birds and we spent a good hour looking around in the trees to find it. We didn´t have much luck.

Unfortunately Alexsandra told us Monday that she is not going to be baptized for now. Her whole family was putting pressure on her and her boyfriend (who does not have the best intentions) basically told her he´d break up with her if she baptized. As much as we tried to help her make the right choice she ended up quitting. I was really sad but that´s just the way it is sometimes. At least we have more time to work with more people now.

We are working with a bunch of people right now. We have a less active family that we are trying to reactivate that has 4 children that need to be baptized and they are way open. We visited them with a counselor in the bishoprick and the primary president that was a huge success. They are way excited. We also have a woman named Viviane who is going well. She is very frank and is loving our visits. We also have Monica who is a recovering drug addict who is now ready to live the gospel. She is very kind but lacks confidence so we are going to build her up a bunch.

Saturday was interesting. I don´t know if I´ve mentioned this but Elder Monteiro has a health problem called cron syndrom which is a digestive problem that can be really dangerous. He had to go to the hospital this Saturday to take his medicine which is a 3 to 4 hour process. I had to stay in the mission office and help out there. He ended up finishing so late that we had to sleep at the office. Sunday morning we had to leave at 6 to get to our area in time for church.

Today we had a zone barbeque in Embu. It was way fun! There were transfers this week so we all got to say goodbyes and talk about how fun this last transfer was. And eat a bunch of meat! haha!

Well that´s all for now,

Elder Taggart