Matt's scripture for the week

Therefore, … whosoever will come may come and partake of the waters of life freely;

Alma 42:27

Friday, August 24, 2012


Hey....                                                                          22 Aug 2012

Hello Mom and Dad!  Congrats on being GRANDPARENTS! You’re getting way to old ha . Thank you for sending me the pictures of grandma and grandpa's funerals in the package.  Yes I got it and I loved it! I got to listen to grandma’s funeral and watch the slide show!  Man I wish I could’ve been there!  I feel like none of this stuff is happening because I’m not there. I can’t believe I have a niece, it doesn’t feel like it. But I’ve been telling everyone about her! 

This week went pretty good as well. My comp and I are really trying to focus on baptismal dates, because all the investigators that we have had never really took it seriously. But now that we have people coming to church and reading and praying they are finally starting to understand what baptism is and why they need it. 

The guy that showed up to church is named Bryce, and he is amazing.  Like I said he knows a lot about of the Bible and is only looking for the truth.  So we have gotten the chance to visit him a couple of times this week and we also explained baptism to him and invited him to be baptized and he told us, don’t worry I’ll be baptized, I just need to talk to yall four more times to learn more and understand!  After that lesson my comp was so so excited and asked me how in the world someone so perfect gets put right in front of us. I told him that the Lord prepares his children, and we are the ones working to find them so he just made it easier for us. Because here in Dajabon we have contacted so many people and have gotten to meet a lot of people that are way good people but aren’t ready to except the gospel and it doesn’t mean that they are bad , just not prepared. 

We had a meeting with the zones from Puerto Plata and Navarrette and the President on Friday so we had to travel two and a half hours to get there.   I learned the coolest thing at the meeting.  Sister Douglas spoke in her terrible Spanish about gratitude, and invited us all to write down 5 things that we are grateful for every night for 30 days. She researched a study and found that people that write these things in a journal will live 6 years longer in their lives! ha and it’s because they are more happy and focus on the things that are good in life. 

Oh also.  we got cheated by a Haitian.  He was walking in the street with his wife and his kid and he waved us down and asked for money.  So I bought him a bag of bread and water instead.  The next day he came to church and asked the Bishop for help.  So he gave him like 60 bucks to go by food.  A dude we know found them a house and got them settled in. He went back that night to see how they were doing and they had left and taken all of the food, and we haven’t seen them since! ha but it’s okay at least we did what we could.  

But I am grateful for this gospel and also for my family. I’m grateful to have a brother and sisters that have always been my friends and to have two parents that have always loved me. I’m grateful the atonement of Jesus Christ because I know that I will be able to live with him again because he died for me. I’m grateful for the blessing that I have received in my life.  It’s hard to see people here with nothing, knowing that there is something better. Lastly, I am grateful for the chance to be a missionary. 
I love all of you and hope everything is awesome!!!!! 

Day of service and a healthy baby
Elder Afatasi and me
Elder Horne, challis and Rocicot with me 
I found a car that looked like mine and almost cried. 


D 22

Hey family!                                                                                                       Aug 15, 2012

Oh so I guess I’m an uncle!!!!!!!!
BUT WHERE ARE THE PICTURES. yall know that this only happens once in a life time, ya need to take pictures!!!!!! 

But anyway things here are finally picking up. And we are finally having success.  we have found a lot of people that are actually interested and that are acting and want to come to church and want to read and that are praying to find out that the message we share is true. 

We are teaching Vladimir and Yesaina, they are brother and sister that live with their grandparents. She is 18 and he is 17. They came to church on Sunday and it was the coolest thing because they found 4 members that are their friends and the priest that gave a talk thanked them both for coming, in his talk. As we were talking to them after church to put a cita (make an appointment) they told us to come whenever but not to worry because they’ll always come to church ha . 

Another cool thing that happened was that this random guy showed up to church and sat down in elder’s quorum like it was nothing and started answering every question. We got talking to him and found out that he was just visiting to see how the church was. He has read the bible all the way through and he found out that the Catholic Church wasn’t true for him so he wanted to try out our church. Yesterday, we got the chance to visit him. We had the best lesson that I’ve had in my mission. He understood everything because he knows what happen with the church after Christ’s death. It was amazing to see him as we explained the restoration; it was like a puzzle piece completing the puzzle, like something just clicked. When we got done explaining all he said was WOW....hah then he asked us if he could have a Book of Mormon.  We are visiting him on Saturday and I really hope that the Lord will help him to progress.

One thing that we have been practicing as a district, is teaching the members to teach with us. So what we do is every day before we leave we have a lesson with a member and we practice with them. We did that with the kid that is the picture, his name is Marcelino, and we had a perfect lesson. The investigators name is Natalie and she had written about 4 questions for us to answer which means she was interested.  We were able to answer every single question she had. I know it’s because of the practices that we have done with Marcelino, our study and the influence of the Holy Spirit. ! So it’s fun to see things working.   Just like in all of the sports I’ve been involved in, you got to put in the time, practice correctly, do the fundamentals, put in extra effort and believe in yourself and abilities – kind of like you got to work to get paid!

We also had the chance to go and put in a floor to a bathroom that a member is making. So we went and mixed concrete and poured it and smoothed it out for the floor. So don’t worry when I get back if ya need any concrete work done, I’ve been prepared in the mission. hahah. No!  But it was fun and I had a good time. 

Today we got the chance to go to Manzanillo to the beach for pday. We had to hitch hike to get there, it was great fun ha.
HOPE THAT OLIVIA AND STACI ARE FINE: don’t really know anything that’s going on, but I hope all is well and I’m excited to be an uncle. Love ya lots


mision santiago

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

D P21

Diggin' a ditch for a PVC pipe

PVC pipe is for the Kitchen in the back

My Bling buddy

Just posin' with God's great creations in the back ground

D 21

Well hello                                                                       8 AUG 2012

We had a really good week but a couple of things scared me. hahah . 

First off we are getting everyone to church now haha. We had three investigators in church and it was awesome because church went so well for the first time. The teachers showed upon time and they had the class prepared well, the bishop was there on time haha and it was fast and testimony sacrament meeting so everyone got a chance to share. It’s way nice to see the ward or branch functioning well finally! As missionaries, we called a ward council meeting and invited everyone that had a calling. We sat everyone down and I shared a part of the importance of having a mission leader because we didn’t have one. My comp shared about the activities and how we could make them a better missionary tool, Elder Timothy shared about the ward working with the missionaries and Elder Grover shared about the organizations and how they should work. We put goals, they committed to work and we are seeing the results and hopefully they will keep improving as time goes on. 

I lead the District meeting on Monday and it went well . We are really focusing on references from the ward members right now, and just as i said in my last email, references are the best things for missionaries.  And in our ward in Dajabon there are a lot of people that are members but they are the only one in their family. So what I focused on is that the Lord in preparing people, and it makes more sense to me that the people that are being prepared are the ones that are around the members the most. Of course we can go knock doors and hope to find someone that have been blessed in that specific moment. But I have found that the Lord likes it when we think and use our brains to work more efficiently and effectively. So we talked a lot about how we can get more families in the ward and we practiced how we were going to ask for references and it went well!

 One of the references that we are working with , Juan Luis , did something that  really made my comp and I happy. We were walking over close to his house and we stopped to talk to a member that lives nearby.  We didn’t have him scheduled to teach that night but he saw us, went and grabbed his Book of Mormon and came and asked us if we were going to share ! haha it was awesome. So, we got to find out who Jesus Christ is for him and he didn’t really have an answer.  But when we left after sharing a ton of scriptures mainly in Alma 7 11 _ 13, he realized the importance and what Christ has done for us.

 As you see in the pictures we did service yesterday morning.  We had to help dig a ditch for a PVC pipe to filter out water from the house and also dug four post holes to put the kitchen in the back of the house.  It was fun but I got so so tired and my comp was dead ha . 

Oh, the thing that scared me this week was we have a dog following us everywhere we go and a guy that I swear is out to kill us.  We were walking out of our house one morning and a guy stopped us on his motorcycle.  He asked us if we were happy and we said yes... ha and then asked us when were leaving because we don’t have anything to do here. That was kind of weird, but, we talked to him a little bit and found out that he is a pastor in the Iglesia Evangelica and sees us all the time and thinks that we worship Joseph Smith and that the BOM is false. So, after talking with him for a while, he left. Later that night we walked past his church to go and visit someone and I don’t know if he saw us or what but five minutes later when we were talking to this lady, he came up and interrupted us and began to tell her to be careful and to not accept our message. haha Wow. it was creepy, but its okay.

 I know that what I am doing is right and that the gospel is true and the church is perfect and the only way I know it is from prayer and reading the Book of Mormon. So I hope that everyone could also have that chance to find out like I did! Its good to know.I love all of you !


mision santiago

Sunday, August 5, 2012

D P20

Rice field in front of our apartment

Tracting in the morning

Dajabin comps - Elder Alverez

1 year out


hola hola.                                                                Aug 1, 2012

 welp. I find that imp finally growing as a missionary everyday now. This week we had a couple experiences that helped me know that the lord is always preparing someone to hear from us, and reading Dad’s letter, I really do believe that it is because of the prayers that go out for the missionary’s every day.  So keep them coming! haha. But being with Elder Esparza still, has given me the chance to really focus on the work and not worry about who I am with and what he is doing. We now are teaching a couple of people that are referrals from some of the members. One is named José Luis and the other is Julio Cesar.

We talked with a couple members and explained how they could help us find people and so they went out and found these two people for us. José Luis is the son in law of a member and he honestly has been prepared by the Lord. We showed up at his door and no kidding,  before we got in the door he was reading the Book of Mormon.
We had the chance this last week to put a baptismal date with him and he accepted. The challenge right now, like a lot of people her the DR, is that he and his girl friend need to get married but I’m 100 percent sure that they will get that figured out.

The other person is Julio Cesar.  This guy is awesome he is only 22 but doesn’t really have much going for him in his life right now. So he invited us to share with him.  He has been someone that has really helped me to understand my purpose here because he is someone that wants to have God in his life and an eternal perspective.  Ha, that’s what I’m here to help with, no!

Another lady named Diosmary has been progressing for a while but her family has always been in the shadows. She explained to us that her family is all from another church and that her kids participate in Jesuitas and her husband has some part in the church as well, but she wants them to hear from us to see what will happen. ha When she told me that I got a little nervous because I’m only 20 and she wants me to go up against the pope of the DR haha but it’ll all be okay with the help of the Spirit, I can testify of the truth, even if I don’t have the scholarly back ground!

It’s not an amazing story but yesterday I made Dominican spaghetti and we took it to our neighbors that live downstairs from us and ate with them. ha We had a good time and hopefully we can talk with them about our message! 

Guys, Ii love you all and I hope the best for each and every one of you. Please take care of Staci and make sure that she doesn’t pop too soon. and tell Casey I love her.

I know the gospel is true and that it is the only way to return to live with our heavenly father (which is something that will be pretty cool)! So keep praying and reading and attending church!

 ha love yall!  bye family.

mision santiago

D P19

Yefery and some of the YM in our branch

Yep! doing dishes


It’s been a while since I’ve seen yall...... a year!

FIRST OFF .HAPPY BIRTHDAY LINDSAY GRINER!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I
I hope that your birthday is the best day of your life, because it should be!

I’m in Santiago this week so I don’t have a lot of time to write.  This week we had the chance to have a family home evening with one of our investigators named Yohanni. It was a great experience and she is an awesome lady. We have been teaching her for a while now but she hasn’t been able to progress because her mom always needs her in the house watching after her and feeding her (kind of like Grandma Hutchings), but she is now coming to church again and sharing with us. So on Monday without planning much we went and bought food for her and we went to her house to cook and had an FHE which was way fun. 

In our area we are just about finishing meeting all of the people that we can (it seems like) but we still come across way nice people that love to listen to us. It’s hard to get them to come to church!

We had a cool experience the other day that I won’t forget. We were walking to an appointment when a guy called us so we stopped and when I saw who he was a was amazed that he wanted to talk to us. He is a person that is a former member who had been the branch president and what he said to us was ¨I need your help, because there are no blessings outside of the church.¨  So we are going to pass by and find out what we can do to help him to come back to church, because he realizes what he gave up if all goes well we can use all of the potential priesthood leadership in our area of Dajabon. 

Last Sunday in church I ended up teaching the young men and my comp taught Sunday School. They were good lessons and great to be bale to do them, but we know that we have a little bit of work to do to help everyone understand their callings and commitment. But I know that everything happens for a reason that I am here to help in some aspect of the work.

Have a good week!
I love you a lot and so does GOD!

mision santiago