Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Week 24 - Exile on the island!

Sorry for the short email this week, but we had transfers yesterday!  I'm staying in Menorca but they are taking two Elders out and combining our areas.  Now my new companion (Elder Dixon) and I have the entire island to ourselves!  crazy stuff!!  Hopefully I survive.  ;)  Anyway this island is the best and if you are traveling anywhere in Spain, I would suggest visiting it!  Although not until after I'm gone. 
Here is a miracle from last week:
This last week we saw a miracle through the help of the members. We had planned a branch activity, a comida del mundo {foods of the world} thing, and we made two dishes. We got there at 6 and waited for everybody to show up. Nobody showed. After an hour, one member, Miguel, showed up and asked where everyone was. We told him that everyone said they were coming, but no one was here yet. He then called Hermana Alejandra and she came right over after making her dish. She then proceeded to call EVERYONE and invite them. By 8 o'clock, we had 23 people there!!! It was incredible. The power of the members is so much more than they even know. We as missonaries had invited all of these people several times but all it took was a phone call from one member to get them going. That was a huge testimony builder for me! 
Everyone, help the missionaries, you have no idea how much power you have as members!!  Just like that one law company says, all it takes is "one call that's all!"

Love you all have a great week!
Con Amor,
Elder Jonson

Ward party -International foods

No one came until one member came and made one call which caused several phone calls and eventually 23 attendees!  "One call, that's all!"

An exerpt of responses to Kalai's letter.

No baptisms yet but they'll get there!  During the summer we wear our suits as little as possible. We wear suits when we travel, when we have meetings and that is it.  We are wearing short sleeve white shirts right now everyday.  Long sleeve shirts are good for the winter though.  Well, we are pretty safe here in Spain, and I love it here because they have all types of people here!  Not many Mexicans though...On pisos,[apartments] Elder Dixon and I are now living in a mostly empty large 4 man piso so we have all the space in the world.  I'm waiting to buy a new suit until I can get one at a Zara store on sale (during the winter)  We teach one class every week[Sunday's] and sometimes another one.  We bless and pass the sacrament every week because people are gone, so we need those people to attend more regularly.

[I also asked him to send more every day pictures, so he sent the random Catholic procession picture below.]

Random Catholic Procession on the island of Menorca


Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Week 23 - World Cup

Hola everyone!  This past week has been great!!  We've been on a steady track of improvement! This little rock is fantastic!!!  First off, I'd like to give thanks to the little newspaper stand right next to our apartment that always has the scores of the World Cup the next morning.  On to the work!  

Last preparation day, we went to Mont de Toro, the highest point on the island. Which isn't really saying much because we hiked it in about 30 minutes.  Took some pictures. [See below]  It was a blast!  But the miracle from that day is we got contacted by a lady and her boyfriend in the street!  They had just moved here and she is a less active member but wants to come back. She's Bolivian and her SPANISH boyfriend is really interested in the church!  It was so amazing!  
As you all know the World Cup started this week and it has been so much fun to see random national jerseys every once and a while.  Can you all do me a favor and watch the USA game tonight and cheer for me? {Sorry, a little late on our part}  That would be very appreciated! 

Also we are teaching this great guy named Paco who has been an investigator for about 5 months now.  He's Spanish and he knows so much about the church and should be baptized but isn't married....He's super funny and a fantastic guy.  He speaks basically perfect English, among several other languages. He was a personal waiter to some rich guy and has traveled the world. He also played for the Barcelona B team when he was younger so he was pretty good back in his day.  Just to give you an idea on where this guy is at, he studied and came to a lesson one day with the question:  Is Missouri the New Jerusalem?  He is a great guy!  I hope he gets baptized!!  

Anyway, I'm running short on time, but I love you all and hope you have a great week!

PS I bought a world cup sticker book with all the teams and matches in it for 3 euros...          [see picture below]
Con Amor,
Elder Jonson

Mont de Toro

World Cup Sticker book

Monday, June 9, 2014

5 Month Mark!

June 9th, 2014
Wow.  5 months out on the mission, crazy stuff!  The mission honestly has no sense of time, I might be in's a blast though!! 
This past week has been great!  We had the Doctor who is over all the missionaries in Europe come in with his wife to try and set up the church insurance with the hospital.  Funny story, they're from American Fork, and are related to the Greenwoods in Lehi.  Small world... anyway we went in and translated for them and then showed them around town.  They were great!  Also my companion, Elder Neumiller had to go to the doctor for a rash so I got to standby trying not to laugh as a young nurse stuck two needles into his rear to reduce the inflamation...We also got the doctor's phone number[as a contact] who was a really great guy!  Anyway we had some good lessons this week and I got to have a Samuel the Lamanite experience. 
Elder Neumiller and I were walking up the street past this little cafe and something hit the wall and bounced off and rolled down the hill behind us...we didn't think much of it, until we started walking farther up the street and something hit the wall right next to us again and bounced in front of us this time.  I reached down and picked up a steel marble that had been shot at us by a slingshot as we were walking past.  We were very blessed not to be hit and I realized that the Lord is protecting his missionaries now just like he did in Book of Mormon times!  It's amazing what we experience as missionaries!  
I love seeing the little miracles every week and invite all of you to appreciate the small things in life a little bit more.  We will be happier, if we simply count our blessings!  Hope you all have a great week!
Con Amor,
Elder Jonson


Lighthouse & storm

Cake Face

The face in the cake tradition for his belated birthday celebration - see last week's letter.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

I've heard boys grow on their missions, but... taller than a lighthouse?

Week 21 - More Birthday celebrations & a trip back in time

June 2, 2014  

Well Hi everyone!  How are you all?  This week has been crazy!  First off, last Preparation Day we decided to go out to another lighthouse on the island!  The obsession with lighthouses comes from the mission.  Years ago, a general authority nicknamed our mission the lighthouse for Europe because we are the highest baptizing mission in mainland Europe.  Anyway, as we were driving out there with the Clarks we saw dark clouds coming in.  We got there and three minutes later the wind picked up and the rain started falling.  We were already there so the other Elders and I all ran up to the lighthouse to take pictures!  The wind was so strong it was incredible!! We were almost getting blown over whilst getting pelted by rain and sand!  It was a ton of fun! Anyway, we got back and ended our preparation day and went back to work.  Elder Neumiller and I went to a member's house for a noche de hogar (family night) and they suddenly brought out a birthday cake for me because they hadn't had time to prepare for my birthday the week before!  And like all South Americans, they had me destroy the cake with my face!  Great initiation in the mission!  Also, I found out that a couple days later they had posted pictures of me on Facebook!  If it helps the gospel spread, I'll take it! ;)  

This week we were out of our area, a.k.a. our island, for two days!  We flew to Palma for a zone focus meeting and then Specialized Training with President and Hermana Pace.  The training was so great!  I learned so many things.  We focused on bringing the spirit into lessons!  Also I got to meet my missionary "Brother," the Elder who is getting trained by Elder Jennings!  It was fun. We took a family picture!  The Menorca Elders (us) got to stay overnight in the Levante piso(apartment), my old piso!  And I got to go on a companionship exchange with Elder Dailey!!!  It was so much fun!  I also got to see my recent convert Kevin!!  Overall it was a fantastic trip!! This week has been a blast!  Although we didn't have much success in the work we are setting ourselves up for it soon!  

I can't wait to get back to work!!!  

Con Amor
Elder Jonson

At Punta Nati Lighthouse

Week 20 - Spanish Dreaming

May 26, 2014
Well hi everyone!!  How are you all doing!?  This week has been great!  I got to celebrate my birthday by going to see a light house (at Punta Nati) on the other side of the island last week! The Clarks should have sent home some pictures.[see pictures below this post]  It was so much fun!!  We are in the streets a lot here and we have a very small branch here so it's a different experience!  We had 27 in church last week which is a low for the month but we are going to get it back up.

The big accomplishment for me this week was apparently Elder Neumiller caught me talking in my sleep about mission stuff and it was in both English and SPANISH!!!  I was super proud of myself when I heard that!!  Great experience!!  Well this week we are going to be out of our area for two days for specialized training in Palma.  We fly out this Thursday! 

This island is so pretty and has so few people on it!  Which is great for future-tourist-Elder Jonson, but not so great for missionary-Elder Jonson!  The island is so great though!  The missionaries here call the island the "Lava Rock."  All normal things in the mission DON'T happen here.  So it's going to take some thinking outside of the box...I'm up for the challenge! 

Well hope you all are doing well and are enjoying life!  Just be sure to watch the World Cup for me!
Go USA!!!
Con Amor,
Elder Jonson

The 4 Elders on Menorca & Tikal with his comp., Elder Neumiller

Birthday celebrations on the shore - Thanks to Bro. & Sis. Clark!