Thursday, October 30, 2014

Arrived in Nicaragua

I made it to Nicaragua.  Luckily i made my luggage through without getting charged for another bag, but I did have to pay an overweight fee. I don't have much time, but I will try to tell as much as I can.

The flight there went well, nothing bad happened, and we were picked up right on time from the airport be the AP`s, and went on a bus to the presidents house. His house was super nice and one of the few with air conditioning.

Nicaragua is super populated and very dirty, But also very green. I am now serving in a town called Tipitapa, which is north east of Managua. It is so hot here! I sweat all the time. I can only stand some of the words that people say, but am getting better at talking. There is so much trash everywhere! I don't think they have a garbage system, so the streets get pretty dirty.

My companion is a native from Guatemala named Elder Ochoa. This is his last transfer and he will be leaving in six weeks. He is very nice and I am really glad that he speaks Spanish so well. I am out of time, but will probably be able to talk on Monday. Hope you all have a great week.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Leaving in a Few Hours

       Dear familia, I just wanted to tell you guys how much I love you and really love your emails. I am leaving to the airport in a few hours at 2:30 AM! I Got special permission to email you guys tonight, because I might not be able to do it later. 

        The MTC has been such a great experience. I have met so many wonderful missionaries that I am so sad that I have to leave them. This week has been so great, but has gone so fast! I cant believe it is already time to go! 

       This week we have had a ton of meetings. Last Friday that was all we did. The best part though, was when we had our leaving testimony meeting. I had not felt the spirit so strong until that meeting. Besides for those meetings, we have just been packing for the trip. I am afraid
that my stuff might be overweight, because they have given us a lot of things to take in the MTC.
If it is, I will have to dispose of it it a nearby trashcan. 

    I hope you guys receive the video that my teacher hermana Vidrio was suppose to send to you. Sorry that I am so lifeless in it, it is hard to think of what to say on the spot. What I wanted t say, but forgot to is that I love you guys so much! Being out here has made me appreciate you guys more than ever before. You have all been such great examples in my life and I want you to know that you mean everything to me. Being out here in the MTC was not to hard, but it was not being able to be around you that made it so. Most of the people out here are really supportive, especially my district. 

  I don't know when I will be able to talk to you next, It might be tomorrow, or in two weeks. I am really sorry that I wont be able to call you tonight. I really want to, but I want to be completely obedient. I have tried really hard to be as obedient as I can. There are so many little rules that are hard to remember to do, like walk right beside your companion, never leave your companion from sight and sound, going to sleep exactly at 10:30, and waking up at exactly 6:30.

  Thanks for all the things you have done for me. I will keep an eye out for the Deyoungs nephew. Congrats Dad on getting the Dear, I hope it was a good one. I am sure that I will have more to tell you next time, but right now everything is very similar. Wish me luck tonight! 

                 Love you all Elder Clark

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Final Week in Mexico

Hey familia, its great to hear from you and to hear that you had a great time at the cabin. Thanks for all the letters, they are the best part of the week.
                  The CCM is still great, I cant believe how fast the days are flying by. Next week we are leaving to Nicaragua on Tuesday the 28th. Our bus will be leaving bright and early at 2:30 AM! We will fly out of Mexico City at 5:30, to El Salvador, then from El Salvador to Nicaragua. I was really hopping we would leave at a regular time of the day like some of the other  missionaries, but at least we are leaving. The CCM is a wonderful place, but it is time to go somewhere new.
                Last Saturday was amazing! Elder Anderson of the twelve came and spoke to all the missionaries. At first when I seen him, he seemed pretty much like an average guy, but when I shook his hand I could feel his love for the church and for all of us missionaries. He was so kind to everyone there, and was so at ease speaking. He spoke of missionary work and of his mission. He told of how in his mission, he was never the best missionary, or was never the Assistant to the President or anything like that, but he did his best and that was all that mattered. I have a new found respect for the apostles.  Even though they probably have the busiest lives on earth, he still took his time to come to Mexico city to speak with us.
                     Mexico is so noisy! I think there was a Holiday or something, because there were more fireworks going of than usual. A Few days ago, some people in the City decided to let of super loud rocket fireworks at four in the morning. It is so funny, because the fire works go off so often that no one even cares anymore.
                 On Monday we put together missionary kits for incoming missionaries that contained the pamphlets that they would use on their missions. As we were setting these together, the elevator broke down while half of my district was in there. This elevator was not like the ones in America, It was all yellow, seats about four people to be comfortable, and looks like something that would be in a submarine. Luckily they were only stuck in there for 45 minutes.
                         On most days we have gym where my friend and I Elder Hacking Play Ping Pong for an hour. It is really fun to be able to do at least something from my former life. The problem
is, there are so many missionaries here that want to play, and we only have two tables. When I cant play ping pong, we usually play volleyball.
               Its really hard to remember what I have already told you, because every day is so much like the one before. Besides for going to the temple, I could not really tell you one day from  another past a week ago.
                   All the people in our district are fine. A lot of other districts have had people go home, but none in our have. Contention between missionaries occasionally happens, but for the most part everyone gets along pretty well.
                    I have not had any problems with the food, it is all very well prepared even if it sometimes lacks flavor. Some people have been getting diarrhea, but i have been fine. I don't need my water purifier here, because all the water here form the sinks comes from a special well just for the MTC. This water tastes really bad, but is safe. For drinking water, the CCM brings in big jugs of water and places them throughout the CCM, so I can get pure water whenever I want. 

They gave us water filtration bottles, the exact same one I already have, so now I am double prepared! They said that one filter will last a year, and now I have four so I will be in good shape! Only those going to a foreign mission get water bottles.

                 There are a lot more people here going back to the states. I would say about 75 percent of the people are going back. I think most foreign missions go to other MTC´s.
                  I don't think I will be able to call from the airport, I have heard that the MTC president has said that we are not suppose to. I would love to call you, but I really don't want to break my
mission rules. If not, I will be able to face time you guys in December.

                 My Spanish has grown a lot. I can now have a descent conversation with the natives as long as it concerns the Gospel. If it concerns anything about regular life I am pretty limited. 

                 I feel like I have learned a ton here. Not only about the gospel and Spanish, but how to teach, patience, and how to love everyone. I have learned that those who may seem unlikable and unfriendly can become some of your greatest friends. It is so weird here, because most of the time I wish I was doing something fun like playing ping pong instead of studying, and I would not say that most things we do are fun, but it makes me very happy anyways.
There is nothing else I can think of to share. Dad, good luck hunting, I hope you have a good time, but be safe! Glad You are all doing well. I love you guys so much and miss you all.

                  Elder Samuel Clark

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Bien Venidos De Mexico

Hey Familia
                             Thank you for all the emails you have sent me. That is what makes P day the best day of the week. It is so awesome to hear from you all every week. Sometimes I do get a little home sick and it is great to hear what is happening back home. 

                              Today was probably the best day of my mission so far. Today we got to visit the Mexico City temple grounds. We could not go in because of cleaning or renovation, I am not
really sure. The drive there was very crazy. There is so many things in Mexico city that if I was by myself I would instantly be lost. There are so many police, we see one on almost every street. The cars do not obey traffic laws, and motorcycles go wherever they want. The houses are small, colorful, and look very dirty. Nearby the ccm is a block of houses on a side of a mountain! I cannot believe how steep the roads are on the mountain! You would think that they would wind up the steep parts like they do in Bountiful, But not here, they just go straight up! It was really nice to get to the temple and go through the tour. I was very surprised how nice the visitors center was and how few people besides the missionaries were there. What was really crazy that was after our tour, we began to walk around the visitors center, and I ran into Elder Austin Walker! He told me that he and his fellow companions missed their flight the night before, so they spent the night at the temple grounds. It was such a funny coincidence to see him there. We talked for a while and he said he was doing good. I think they had a hard time, because they were stuck in Mexico City by themselves for a time. And then to make my day even better, I got to come back and read emails from you guys.

                         Everything else is great here at the MTC. I am really tired of being stuck here and cant wait for Nicaragua. Even though it is such a spiritual place here, I have to agree with what  Elder Cooley said about this being a spiritual prison. I think about you guys all the time. It feels like I have been here for more than just one month. The night are getting colder here, I can see my breath in the mornings, but im sure it is not as cold as Morgan. Elder Anderson of the twelve is going to come this weekend. It will be really awesome to see him and I have heard that after he speaks he will greet every missionary personally. We have a devotional every Tuesday and Sunday, but they are usually recordings or members of the seventy. In one of our devotionals, we listened to a recording of Elder Holland. In his talk, he said something about a director sitting in the audience named Steve Allen. I was not sure if he was talking about our Steve
Allen, but you will have to talk with him and ask him. Nothing else out of the ordinary. We have gym every day, and usually study for the rest of it. We did service on Monday which consisted of scrubbing bathrooms in the casas where missionaries stay. I see a lot of missionaries from
my school which is really nice One of them is Elder Gardner who was good frineds with Elder Bickley and Elder Cooley.

                        All the natives are so great. Our friends Elder Diaz and some others who are our natives just left yesterday, because they only have to stay for two weeks. It was hard to come to know them and see them leave so soon. We would joke around together and were beginning to be pretty good friends. Half the time when a native sees my name they bring up something about super man. Other missionaries come and go all the time, but it is usually only when
they leave from our zone when we care about it. It is sad to see all of our friends leaving. There are a lot more people leaving than coming in the CCM. We use to have four districts in our zone at the start and now we are down to two with one leaving next week. 

                      Hey Davis, Glad to hear life is good. Good job in soccer and school. Mexico is great, we went to the temple today and it was really fin. Mexico is absolutely crazy! There are cops everywhere and so much to see. Thanks for the email.

                      Mom, thanks for the email. I don't think I am going to be able to get the package to Elder Bickley, I have not met any missionaries going to that mission. By the way Jodi Bickley
sent me mail and it was really great to read even though it was hard to understand, tell her thanks if you can. The card reader never arrived, but I might be able to buy one in Nicaragua sometime. Thanks for all you do for me.

                     Dad, thanks for your advise, I will be sure to make use of it. I am glad that the garden turned out so well and good luck on the Pond.

                     Ike, I miss you a lot and hope you are doing well; sharing a tiny bathroom with three others makes me appreciate home  and that sharing our bathroom was not that bad.

             I love you all so much. 
                              Elder Sam Clark

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Third Week in Mexico

 Hey familia, the CCM is still great. The weeks are going by much faster than they use to, but it still feels like I have not been home for a long time. I am so glad to hear about all the great things that are happening there. I miss you a ton. Keep sending me emails about how you are dong. Some of the best times at the CCM is on P day when I get to open up my e mail and read your letters.

     Tell Eric and Nick that I am so happy for them and wish them the best of luck. If they do as well on Asher as they did on Abbey and Brenan, he will be a wonderful cousin. Tell them that I miss them as well, and cant wait for the day I can see Asher. If you don't mind, could you get me the emails of grandpa Sam and the the Evans, I would like to talk with him in Nicaragua when I have more time to e mail.

    All is the same here at the CCM. we wake up at 6:30, get ready for the day, and study for most of the day. I want to tell you that the best part of the CCM is my district. I cant believe how close we have gotten together in the last three weeks. I am so blessed to have such great people with me. I wish I could send a picture of them to you guys. Thanks mom for trying to send the card reader, but it has not come yet. I dont really know what to send to you guys, so I will talk a little about what we did this week, and about the people in the CCM.

     This week we had conference, which consisted of strictly sitting in the auditorium one half our before it started where we watched every session of conference. It was actually not as bad as I thought it would be. After so many talks though, they all start to blur together. I really likes the talk by Richard G Scott though. He talked about prayer, and how if we are really suppose to feel God in our lives, we tell him all that we can about our days and our lives. I have felt this to be a great blessing in my life. When I pray with real sincerity, I feel calm and my purpose of serving a mission is reinvigorated. I would like you guys to read this talk if you have time. 

   Besides conference, nothing else out of the ordinary has happened. It rains almost every night which is really nice, because it cools the air. We did our service project yesterday, in which we scrubbed the walls of a casa that missionaries will be staying in. It was really nice to do something besides studying.

    I have made some really great friends here in the MTC. One of the goes by the name of Elder Tran. He is from New York, and also in our district. It was really funny, because at first I did not like him too much, but then he turned out to be such a great person. He is going to Nicaragua North. It is very nice to have someone to talk to, because my companion does not like to talk at all. Elder Tran is always happy and makes me feel like a good person. I was just able to borrow a card reader from some one a few minutes ago, so i am going to try to send some pictures. I hope you get them. Elder Tran is the one on my right with the red tie,and My companion is the one above the A in Capcitacion with glasses.

​I love you guys and miss you very much. I wish you the best of luck. Thanks for your emails and all that you do for me.

                          Elder Sam Clark