Monday, July 11, 2016

Bonus Edition: Quartet Video and Photos

The cover photo for the Mexico, Guadalajara East Mission Facebook page
President and Sis Egginton arriving
President and Sis Camarillo leaving
Elder Wagner and other Elders serving in the office
June 2015

Elder Wagner has become a singer! 
He never sang in public, or anywhere, before his mission!
This was quite a pleasant surprise to his mom!
See comments below about his new found talent:

Sullivan Ward Bulletin
Last week to be listed officially as a missionary
July 10, 2016
This photo was taken at his last Zone Conference
the last week of his mission, serving as a Zone Leader with Elder Ojeda

Carnation Ward Bulletin
Last week to be listed officially as a 
July 10, 2016

Week One-hundred and one: My last email as a full time missionary!

I cant believe it, but the hour has come! This Thursday I will go to Zihuatanejo (Elder Clifford's area) to give a baptismal interview and the next day we will travel to Guadalajara for our final weekend! Crazy right?!

Elder Ojeda and I at Zone Conference in Guadalajara
This week we went to Guadalajara and after we got back we traveled the same day we got home to Zihuatanejo for a baptismal interview, so we didnt get much time to work in our area, but the sister missionaries in our ward had a baptism and it was great! I love baptisms! Ill attach some pictures. Also, Vicky and her 2 kids Jose and Monserrat (the part member family we are activating) went to the baptisms! they arrived just in time for the final hymn and the closing prayer, but they went! However they didnt go to church, so were going to see what happened there :/

The sister missionaries in our ward had a baptism and it was great! 

Well, in 2 years serving the Lord I have learned a lot. Im sure that you can tell just from reading my emails. I am extremely grateful for this opportunity to know the Savior better and understand the plan of happiness that our Heavenly Father has given us. I have gained a better understanding and appreciation for the restoration of the gospel and the modern revelation that we currently receive from living prophets and apostles. These have been 2 of the happiest, busiest, shortest, longest, craziest, most cherished years of my life and I hope I never forget the important life lessons and spiritual truths I have learned here. If you are a young man or young woman reading this and youre not sure about serving a mission, DO IT. I promise you will never regret it.

This is one of the last times ill be able to testify of the Lord Jesus Christ as one of his full time servants, so im going to have to take advantage of it. I know that Jesus is the Christ, the Father´s beloved son who atoned for our sins and saved us from sin and Satan. I know that our Heavely Father loves and cares for each and every one of us. Through the good and bad he will always be there to hear our prayers and help us on our way. I testify that God the Father and His Son Jesus Christ appeared to Joseph Smith to restore the fullness of the gospel so that all of us can enjoy the eternal blessings that come through it. I testify that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the only fully true church on the face of the earth and by it and obedience to the laws and ordinances of the gospel we can recieve eternal life. I testify of these things in the name of our Savior Jesus Christ, amen.

This week i will ponderize Luke 22:32 "But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not; and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren."

I attached some random photos from this week but I dont have time to explain them, but enjoy!!

See you soon! 

- Elder Wagner

Monday, July 4, 2016

Week One-hundred: Happy 4th of July! PLUS some photos his friend shared from the MTC. BEFORE and AFTER Photos

I was pretty excited to finish with Elder Clifford and some other good friends.
Elder's Clifford, Wagner, Herrmann, and Griffin

To start the week out, we went to Elder Clifford´s district meeting! During the meeting I realized that it was my last district meeting because this week I´ll be traveling to Guadalajara and my last week we will have a zone meeting, so I was pretty excited to finish with Elder Clifford and some other good friends. I´ll attach a photo of the Americans who were present.

After the district meeting we went on divisions with some other elders whos area is near where we went to the district meeting. I went with Elder Porras who is a good friend of mine. We had some really good lessons. Also, some members who have a mango orchard gave me like 15 pounds of mangoes so that was awesome!

After the divisions we had a somewhat rough week. We were struggling to find people to teach and were getting a little frustrated. Well, I was at least. Friday came along and we had arranged to have a member take us to visit less active members and part member families, but after waiting over an our for him and calling incessantly, he never arrived. The next day (Saturday) we had planned to go with a sister to visit her cousin who we had received as a reference, but she called and said it wasnt going to work out and that he wasnt interested. So thats how things were going for us, then we started our fast after eating on Saturday and arranged to go on splits with the member who couldnt go with us Friday and another couple in the ward. In one night we had more success than we had the entire week! Elder Ojeda and the couple from our ward found a less active family with a 14 yr old daughter who isnt a member and on Sunday they came to church! Its amazing how things work our when you fast, pray, work and do it with the members!

My scripture to ponderize: D&C 81:5-6  "Wherefore, be faithful; stand in the office which I have appointed unto you; succor the weak, lift up the hands which hang down, and strengthen the feeble knees. And if thou art faithful unto the end thou shalt have a crown of immortality, and eternal life in the mansions which I have prepared in the house of my Father."

Challenge: Try do reach out and help the missionaries in your ward. It might be hard because they have a big area, but if you reach out and ask how you can help them they will be eternally greatful!!! And you will be blessed so its a win win!

Have a great week! Just 2 weeks left!!!!


His Zone in the MTC 

Glasses belong to Sister Ormsby who sent the photos.

Elder Josiah Hansen and Wagner

Companions-Elder Wagner and Sasser

MTC Provo/West Campus
Elders Wagner, Dance and Hansen

WOW they look so much younger, he and his friends on either side of him,
Elders Larsen and Clifford!
TOP: Elder Wagner with Elder Clifford on his right
BOTTOM: Left to right-Elder Clifford, Elder Wagner
My they have changed! They look so young in the MTC, they've really matured.

Monday, June 27, 2016

Week Ninety-nine: "No te mueras" PLUS: Photos found on Facebook from Sis. Egginton

This week our zone had interviews with President Egginton. I was super excited to get my last interview in before my exit interview that he will give me my last weekend here... But President told us that he wasnt going to interview Elder Clifford or me. these are his words "ill be seeing you guys in a few weeks". Dang! So he didnt interview me :( Its all good though. After he finished interviewing everyone in the zone he talked to Elder Ojeda and I and before finishing the meeting he grabbed my shoulder and said, "Elder Wagner, NO TE MUERAS!" (Which means "DONT DIE!". I feel like that is that everyone has been telling me these past few weeks haha.

This week was super busy. We had our zone conference, interviews with President Egginton, and our stake conference. All of this was done from Friday to Sunday, so we were busy planning everything during the first half of the week and then the second half we were busy doing it all. Elder Ojeda and I were asked to give small talks at the stake conference and it was pretty nerve racking. Now that I think about it, im pretty sure there were more people at my farewell talk than there were in the Saturday night session of this stake conference, but im pretty sure I was more nervous this time haha. Everything turned out great though!

During the stake conference, Elder Reyes, an area seventy, spoke a lot about keeping the Sabbath day holy. I looked back on how i had treated Sundays before the mission and realized that when i get back ill have to make some changes on my Sunday behavior! He reminded us of some amazing blessings that we can receive if we keep the Sabbath day holy and keep our covenants.

Challenge: This week is to find a way to change your Sunday behavior and make it more spiritual!

This week i am going to ponderize the scripture Alma 39:14 "Seek not after riches nor the vain things of this world; for behold, you cannot carry them with you."

I forgot to take pictures this week, but ill try to do better this week!

Where's Elder Wagz?

Monday, June 20, 2016

Week Ninety-eight: Just one month left

I found this photo of Zach on his "myLDSmail" profile,
since he didn't send photos this week,
 I'm sharing it, even though it is low res.

Time just keeps on flying by. We keep having really busy weeks and I feel like the time just keeps going by faster and faster every day!

Elder Ojeda and I had a lot of big plans and goals for this week and were expecting to have big results, but we had a lot of complications. In stead of working in our area, finding new investigators and so forth, we realized it was a lot more important to get together with the stake leaders and for that reason we were very busy in our area but saw very little progress in our area which was tough, but we feel like the work will now go forth better in the stake now that we have been working more with the stake leaders.

These photos are compliments of a Google search for scenery in
Lazaro Cardenas, the city Elder Wagner is serving in.

We went on divisions this week with Elder Clifford and Elder Herrmann. We went over to Zihuatanejo Thursday night and had a few meetings and then worked with them all day friday. I got to be with Elder Herrmann and got to know him really well. Hes from Utah... and to be honest i dont remember what part haha.. but hes really awesome and is learning and growing a lot.

CHALLENGE: This week we did a lot of preparation for our zone conference which will be this Friday. All the zone is going to read the talk named "To the rescue we can do it" from one of the past general conferences. So that is going to be the challenge this week and next week ill share what we learned as a zone!

My scripture to ponderize this week is Romans 8:6
"For to be carnally minded is death; but to be spiritually minded is life and peace."

Have a great week everyone!

Elder Wagner

Monday, June 13, 2016

Week Ninety-seven: First week with Elder Ojeda

This week Elder Ojeda and I worked a lot with the members to build the relationship between the members and the missionaries and so he could get to know them. As a result of this, we went to the ward activity to clean the chapel on Saturday. The members were trimming a tree and asked us to grab some brooms to poke the tree and get out all the dead leaves and dirt. There was a lot of dirt! Lets just say that when they started cutting the tree some bats came out hahahaha. So we were poking the tree and i got pretty into it... maybe a little bit too into it... you decide. I attached a picture of how I ended up after we finished.

Elder Ojeda is amazing! He helps keep me motivated and is learning the area really quick! Here in the mission when a missionary is close to finishing the mission they are called "Muertos" which means "Dead people".. kind of haha. So since I have very little time left on the mission people jokingly say that im "dead". My companion told me the other day "Elder, youre the most alive dead missionary I have met" haha so thats the kind of positive, uplifting companion I have. I am blessed!

This week I will be ponderizing Alma 37:37
"Counsel with the Lord in all thy doings, and he will direct thee for good; yea, when though liest down at night lie down unto the Lord, that he may watch over you in your sleep; and when thou risest in the morning let thy heart be full of thanks unto God; and if ye do these things, ye shall be lifted up at the last day."

Challenge: As a mission we have learned a lot about the importance of having a vision or knowing where you want to go so you can plan on how to get there. It has really helped me in the mission and it has also helped me set some long term life goals. So the challenge this week is to look at your life and see where you want to go so you can set goals to achieve that vision. You wont regret doing it!

I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Monday, June 6, 2016

Week Ninety-six: The beginning of the last transfer

Heres a picture of a small Iguana
 that ran into our house when we opened the back door

Today I said goodbye to my last american companion Elder Hogge ;( He is actually going to the exact same area I was in before this one! I will receive today around 5pm Elder Ojeda my new companion! I got to see him start the mission and I have actually been on divisions with him and now he is going to be my companion! I dont know a lot about him, but I know that he is from Vera Cruz Mexico and is a great missionary! Ill attach a picture of us that we took last week with a good friend of mine who finished the mission last week.

Elder Ojeda is the one on the far left
Before Elder Hogge left we got our last hurrah in!  

The sister missionaries in our ward (Urieta and Powley) had made matching skirts and then we decided to have some matching ties made from the same fabric.

Elder Hogge and I even wore them to the leadership council and President and Sister Egginton LOVED it hahaha.To top it all off we all wore our matching stuff to church yesterday and sang a special number for Elder Hogge and Sister Urieta´s farewell because they both got transferred. 

Consejo de Liderazgo Junio 2016

This week we traveled to Pantla again for another baptismal interview and I had a super awesome experience with the baptismal candidate (Now recent convert). He has had his life completely changed through the gospel. He was extremely exited to tell me all about in in the interview. Im pretty sure the interview lasted 1.5 hours and i spoke about 15 minutes haha. he said something that really impacted me. He said that a while back he was just an unhappy person and that he felt empty, but now that he has found the church he feels like "a little kid with a new bike and he cant wait to wake up the next morning to go ride it again" those are his words. While I thinking about what he said, I was brought to a scripture in Alma 5:26. "And now behold, I say unto you, my brethren, if ye have experienced a change of heart, and if ye have felt to sing the song of redeeming love, I would ask, can ye feel so now?" I know that all of us have felt that "new bike" feeling and that is amazing. Now the question is, can we feel it now? I like to reflect on this scripture a lot to try and get closer to my Heavenly Father and repent every day. 

Challenge: Ask yourself Can i feel that same feeling now? if not, make the necessary changes. If yes, great job! Keep doing what you're doing. I think I already left this as a challenge, but I really like it and i think it goes along great with the baptismal experience.

Thank you for all your love, support and prayers! I love you all and hope you have a great week! Just six little weeks left! I cant believe how fast its gone! Ive only got 6 more weeks to give it my all with Elder Ojeda, so ill keep you posted!

The following photos were emailed to Pam
 from Yaitza Sagnite Yañez Sandoval,
 as per Elder Wagner's request :)

And this from Hermana Elizabeth Powley's camera: