Monday, December 29, 2014

The Horizon of 2015‏

So, all the non-protected pictures on my memory card were erased on Christmas, so I don't really have any pictures to send y'all right now. However, I plan on getting those back as soon as I get home. Thank goodness for knowing the tricks to computers! (Although if anyone wants to look up "How to recover files with Command Prompt" on google and send me the instructions, that'd be nice, too. I'd like to know how to do that.)

Anyways, Christmas was just about the most amazing Christmas ever (great skype call, diligence, great visits, amazing new CD, etc. etc.). Christmas Eve was also really good - we watched Frozen (in Spanish), and I really want to watch it again (but in English because I couldn't really understand the songs. Gotta practice that some more).

Yesterday was also really good - we got our JW-atheist friend and his mom to church! The mother is fantastic - she's already up to 1 Nefi 8, and participated so well in the Relief Society class that the president asked which ward she was from. It was her first time there, too! They're going to progress a ton. At least, the Mom will.

Something that I hope helped the son, J, out a bit was the video we watched in Church during Gospel Principles. It's called Finding Faith in Christ, and it's really beautiful. The main song is stuck in my head right now, but that's okay, since it's helping me remember the video. I really want to get to know Christ more and more and more, and I believe that I know a lot more about him than I did 2 years ago. I've still got a lot to learn, but that's okay - that's why we're here. To always learn and to always progress. I kinda suppose that's why I like to always have something going on, because if nothing's happening, I get really bored and don't feel like anything's progressing. Although sleep, in appropriate measures, is progress.

2015... back when I was starting the mission, some Elders called in "two-thousand never". And it's finally here. It's quite hard to believe, really. Just 2 more measly days  in 2014, and I'm in what could be one of the biggest years of my life! Although 2013 and 2014 will be really hard to beat.

And I've been craving that cake for so long now (the cake we traditionally make for his birthday). I've really missed that. Aaaand... well, I really enjoyed the Skype was quite fantastic for me. It really got me excited for the work again, since I had such a hard time to explain how grateful I was for the mission and as I bore my testimony.  I'm really glad that those calls don't really affect me that much - one poor sister in the district hadn't even begun her call and was already crying. (She's the first missionary her parents have sent out, being the oldest, and she's in mexico, and she's a daughter, they're in the US... I'm sure you can imagine how it is.) No, the Skype calls my entire mission have actually quite helped me each time I've done them. They help me get some more self-confidence and they help me to feel a little bit better about myself, which, in turn, helps me be a little bit more focused. Afterwards, we had a spiritual thought with the family we were with, and then we went and at KFC for lunch at a member's home. It was a great Christmas. 

What else is there? 

And as for getting home... you do all the plans, and we'll see what goes on from there. All I know is that we're going to visit some of my old areas a lot. But I'll probably share those plans with you and Dad when you get here, if I have them made by that point. All I know is that on Monday, I'd like to spend it in Zócalo, with the other missionaries that head over there.

Well, that's about it for now! Thanks for all your help, support, and prayers that have supported me so much in these last two years!

Con amor,

Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, December 22, 2014

So... Christmas is this week‏


Well, M, who I should've clarified isn't my convert (but still a good friend), is doing quite well; all I did was interview him, baptize him, and go for a couple of rides in his white 2014 BMW something or another which is really nice and can climb to 100 KM/hr in about 3 seconds. (And it drives really smooth, as I could feel in the shotgun seat. It's fancy.)  J doesn't really seem to be progressing as much (I think he thinks this is all just a big joke, but we'll see about that...); on my birthday, I didn't do too much, and Elder B is doing quite fine. He's really interested to see what Christmas is like away from home. Also, I got news today that my package has arrived... I should be getting it around New Year's Eve. Of course, I won't be able to wait the day to open it, maybe, so I'll probably just open it when we get to our house that night. But we'll see.

Aaand... well, not much else happened this week. I've had far more edifying studies recently, although all the people going all sorts of places for Christmas and abandoning the streets isn't really all that great. I'd kinda like it to stop, really.

Also, in regards to cake... I request my tyraditional birthday cake, please. The chocolate/cherry one. I was going to make that for myself, but in the end, I was too poor to buy the ingredients. Sadface.

Oh, well. And we also had the Christmas conference, and we watched Meet the Mormons - the only mission in all Mexico that's been allowed to do that. It helps that the Public Relations officer for the Church down here is a Stake President and really good friends with President Whitehead :D

Why can't I type write?

...Why can't I English?

So, some members knew it was my birthday on Saturday:

​...And this happened. This was on Wednesday. On Saturday, the other family also knew, and the father, the Hno. Cuevas, a very, very kind man, helped me enjoy that day a lot more. So that was good.

And I've only got a month left in the field. That doesn't make me very happy... but oh well. (Almost) all good things must come to an end.

And... well, this is my last Christmas in the field. I forgot to draw y'all a card this time, but there is one thing I'd like to say:

Christ is real. Christmas is real. The Book of Mormon is true. I had the blessing to read the Books of Helaman and 3rd Nephi in December - the prophecy of his birth as recorded in Helaman of 2 days and one night with no darkness; his birth in 3rd Nephi 1, and his coming to the Americas starting in 3 Nefi 11. (Nefi is Nephi, but in Spanish.) That belief is now so embedded in me that I can't doubt it. It's too good, too hopeful, to be false. And it's wonderful.

I hope that each and every single one of you can enjoy this Christmas, and get just a little bit closer to Christ, in one way or another.

It will help you more than you can imagine, with time.

With love,

Elder Newman

Monday, December 15, 2014

There is no subject‏


Anyways, I baptized someone yesterday. His name is M. The joven standing next to him is Jorge, an investigator we're working with. We found him on Monday. He's atheist-JW. It's an... interesting combination. He's atheist, but all his background on religion comes from the JWs. We're trying to get his parents involved so that we can get the full family baptized.

Anyways, things are moving along - I've already gotten along really well with Elder B. I need to go to Peru someday - it's really easy for me to get along with them. And all my peruvian companions have been huge Dragon Ball Z fans... so that's interesting. I'll have to see it some day.

Yeah, it surprises me, too, how little time I've got left in the field. These last six weeks, my goal is to work even harder than I have in the past - to not leave me any time to get homesick and to be able to say, "Yes, I gave it my all." 

Anyways, things are moving along here. I'm almost consistently tired, though, so I'm not too happy about that. Supposedly, it happens to everyone. And as for other stuff... well, there's not really all that much. Although I did descend into the waters of baptism, though - that was exciting.  And I speak really bad spanglish, and for some reason, my spanish has deteriorated. Pero, se está recuperando. Eso es bueno (But it is recovering. That is good.).

I'm really going to miss Méxcio - but that's why I've got to do even more now.


Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, December 8, 2014

El Fin Se Acerca‏ (The End Is Coming)

y hay poco tiempo. Debéis publicar lo que Dios os mandó. Salid, pues, hermanos, con fe proclamando que Dios, de nuevo, su reino fundó. (and there is little time. You must publish what God has commanded you. Come, brethren, faithfully proclaiming God, again, his kingdom founded.)

That's a hymn - "The Time is Far Spent"

Anyways, we had transfers today! He is Elder B, from Peru!

​He's only got three months in the mission, but he's super animado (lively) and is ready to work hard - just the companion I wanted for my last transfer! He's exactly what I wanted, in fact! Latino, animado, trabajador (worker), enfocado (focused) - perfecto para un misionero viejo (perfect for an old missionary). Also, his family is just like mine - Mom, Dad, 5 sons, not a single daughter. The only difference is that I'm the eldest and he's the youngest - he's older than me by almost exactly two months, though. So that's pretty fun.

I'm not sorry for the spanglish.

So yes, I'm now at the last run of my mission. 6 weeks left - they've got to be good. That's my goal - to finish off strong, working hard, undistracted, yet satisfied.

Thanks for all your support, everyone!


Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, December 1, 2014

Elder Newman, get in the TARDIS! We're going to convert the Daleks!‏

​It's wibbly-wobbly-timey-wimey stuff. That's why it's on it's side. (This is the first family in ALL MÉXICO that I've found that actually knows what Doctor Who is and likes it. I was happy.)

Anyways... that "He is the Gift" video is amazing. Pres. Whitehead gave us all permission to watch it. I couldn't really enjoy the most of it though, since the ciber café only has headphones and we can't really use them... but oh well. So, yes, we are using the "Él es la Dádiva" cards and campaign and all that fun stuff.

This week was a little harder, too. I don't know exactly what happened, but the focus thing just wasn't my thing. I've got brighter hopes for this week, though, and I'll be depending on my companion to help me out with that.

​And this is my thanksgiving breakfast: 1/4 pumpkin pie and some old Swiss Miss I got last year.

Okay, so I need to send some more emails, but last thing: Daisy's baptism was amazing, but getting it arranged was a mess. It was worth it in the end.

And that's about it for right now. I can't believe that it's already December - seems like it was just yesterday that the mission was having its Christmas conference on my birthday! Strange how time tends to do that... oh well!

¡Gracias por todo su apoyo! (Thanks for all your support!)
Con amor,
Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, November 24, 2014

Nothing Fits Me Anymore‏

What is English? I can't remember.

Anyways, we went to paint a member's house today (I forgot my camera), and as a result, I put on my old pants. Well, turns out, I've gone down about 4 waist sizes, and too keep them up, I need to stuff in my shirt - not just tuck, but stuff - and use a belt. Even then, however, I still need to fight a bit with my pants. So, anything I used to have... no longer serves me. (Catch the spanglish! Although... I don't remember if one of those phrases is legal in English or not.)

Aaand... well, things went fine for us this last week. As the end draws near, however, I find myself still staying pretty focused, which is what I want. The last thing I want to be doing when I leave is working - I want all to know that I stayed working hard, baptizing and converting the people, loving them, and doing all things well. That's my goal.

Also, I've learned just how true it is, the heavenly paradox of "He that saves his life shall lose it and he that loseth his life for the Lord's sake shall find it." Or something like that; I don't remember English. I see it mostly manifest with my drawings. My ability has increased vastly in these past 22 months, which is quite surprising - I almost never have time to draw anymore, except on mondays. And even then, not all that much. So, moral of the story is: you want to get better at something? Serve the Lord more.

It really works. I've lived it.

Anyways, that's it for right now!

Con espanglix muy horrible, tal vez más parásitos, y amor muy tierno, (With horrible spanglish, perhaps more parasites , and very tender love,

Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, November 17, 2014


So, for reasons that do not need to be explained in an email that gets transferred to an online blog that may or may not contain my not-so-great grammar, I suspected that I got parasites from eating chicken gizzards. It is a dish that is tasty, but I don't recomend it due to the presence of little animals living inside my stomach. I've since received medication, and the results of such medication also do not need to be explained in this email. You can ask if you really, really, want to know.

Anyways, in more spiritual news, we had interviews with the mission president last week and a stake conference yesterday. It was a special transmission from Salt Lake City, and therefore, an Apostle spoke.

The two talks I remember best were the first - basically, it was saying, "You want a united family? Well, it's easy. Super easy! Just read the Book of Mormon every single day and you'll have it. It doesn't matter how much, just read it!" It was nice.

The second talk was about sacrifice, given by Elder Andersen. It was wonderful, as he began talking of the sacrifice of the Mexican saints in giving up the Benemerito for an MTC. As he spoke of this, I thought, "Well, leaving the mission will be another sacrifice for me, then." I had just finished the thought when he gave his definition of sacrifice: "Sacrifice is giving up something good for something better." The answer to that statement of mine was amazing, but what shocked me even more was the timing of the statement. It was incredible.

And I have no pictures this week. Sorry.

And that's about it for now! Thanks for all your support, everyone!

Su siervo y amigo,

Elder Newman

Monday, November 10, 2014


Some people say that the mission is the best two years for one's life, and others say that it's the best two years of one's life. I have now reached the latter - because I wouldn't trade these two years for anything else. NOTHING. And I love it. I, too, have seen how specific areas havce helped me in my life (still not too sure about Idaho, but...), how various people have helped me, how I've helped other people, and so forth. Things are wonderful, and if things keep on going as they are, I will be a very happy missionary towards the end of my time in the field. 

Anyways, we were able to find a new home. It's very small, but very cozy as well. I kinda feel like I'm in a hotel room there, but that's good. We don't have to worry about paying my light or gas or water bills anymore, however! And, even though we barely got any time to work duing the week, everything went a lot better for us this time. This week, there are no extraordinary events planned, so that means we'll do fantastically. The meeting I've got planned for tomorrow is also turning out pretty well. My English probably needs a lot of surgery - it's not terribly healthy, as two witnesses have attested. I'm also quite skinnier.

¿Podemos olvidarnos del inglés y hablar puro español por favor? Ya no sé mi lengua materna, y el inglés es demasiado difícil... mejor cambiemos al español. Sí, me gusta este plan. Hay más reglas que no se rompen. (Can we please forget English and just speak Spanish? I don't know my mother language, and English is much more difficult...better to change to Spanish. Yes, I like this plan. There are fewer rules to break.) All I know is that I'm happier speaking Spanish now, even though I am companions with a güero (gringo).
So, last week was a lot better than the last one. We had the anual Mission Tour, and Elder Jesús A. Ortiz of the (Area?) Seventy came. (I heard First Quorum of the Seventy and Area Seventy, so I'm confused. He didn't clarify after they presented him.) He talked about many things - about how to work, and, what seemed like a direct commentary to me, the after mission life. Oddly enough, it helped me get even more focused instead of getting me unfocused - probably because he took away some fears, doubts, and concerns. So that's really nice. I'll be studying it a lot over the next while, because the Spirit was very, very strong during the meeting. No photos, however.

What else? Oh, well, we found a family of three. The mom and her son are both members, less active, having moved from another state some three months ago. Her husband, not a member, is really good - we told him that we'd pass by their house at 11:30 to go to church (as we have it at noon), at he was sitting there, in his car, with his family, waiting for us to get it and go. I was very, very impressed. The only obstacle... they need to get married first. But, we're working on that. That makes me happy.

And then... well, I'm just loving the mission right now. It's hard, but the harder the better, I say. Well, I say that now. 24 months ago, I wouldn't have said that. I'm still growing, changing, and getting more and more excited to serve the Lord. I would love to extend now, but... well, I don't think that's going to happen, for various reasons. I would love to do it, but don't think that I can.

Well, that's it for now. Thanks for all your support and your prayers, and thanks for spending some of your time reading my little mails! ...If you do read them, that is.

Elder Newman

Monday, November 3, 2014

Día de los muertos‏

So, it's that holiday, and a nice member gives us some treats to hand out to little kids that are trick or treating. So, I have 2. The first one I give away to a 50(ish) year old woman with no kids in sight - but, she has a costume on with flashing lights, and I'm contacting someone, so I think, "...Sure, why not?" The other I give to a guy returning from work, who does have little kids, so I think, "I don't like full pockets, he's got kids, sure, why not?"

I just need to make sure that I nab some pan de muertos before they stop selling it. Soon, it'll be roscos de reyes. I have 3 months left. (Sssshhhh - I don't dread it (that much) but I don't want to think about it)

Anyways, not much has been going on here. Last week was probably my worst week the entire time I've been here. Not in how I was feeling or anything like that, but numerically. My least diligent week ever. BUT if I've learned anything, it's not to let past failures (or people smoking right behind me) get on my nerves too much - just gotta remember the successes and all that fun stuff.

We need to change houses, so we're planning on doing it this week, too. Aaand... what else? Lomas Verdes is great; we've got Costco (they have bagels) and pie (we bought one - it's apple) and apple cider (we still need to buy that). They also have Wal-Mart; I just hope I don't gain any weight out here. I've dropped 45-ish pounds in the mission; if I get those back, I'd want it to be muscle. Not fat. So, I've been working on treating myself a lot better.

Being here in Lomas Verdes has been really good. There are quite a few people that I've met here that remember me from way back when (over a year ago); the bishop in Naucalli and his wife were particularly happy to see me (I didn't get the chance to see Hermano Uribe yet) - they were also surprised at how much weight I'd lost. I've lost about 45 pounds since I've gotten to the field - the suit that Presidente had me get is starting to get a little large for me. Not too much, but it's a lot more loose. Just can't let the apple pie we bought from Costco today reverse that.

That means WORK!

Costco is just the most american store ever.

Con amor,

Elder Newman

Monday, October 27, 2014

"There and Back Again: A (Newman)'s Tale"

Brackets can't be done with this computer.

SO, I am not longer in Maravatio... so that's sad. I was transferred to Lomas Verdes, which, you should know, is an area in my very first zone, which also means that I'll be going to the same chapel that I started in. I'll be finishing right where I began! Physically, not spiritually. It's amazing because we meet in the same chapel as Naucalli - MY VERY FIRST AREA! It is quite exciting.

Spiritually, I'm nowhere near where I began! I've come such a long way. I still have a long ways to go, but I'm happy knowing that I have changed and progressed. I'm still me - that is, I've the same personality, likes, and dislikes (for the most part - although there are a lot fewer dislikes. Well... I'll have to think about that one). I'm a better Elder Newman - like Elder Newman v. or something like that.

I'm so old. There's almost nobody in my new district that has more than 6 months - I still need to verify with two other sisters that are in the district.

I don't want to face the facts of me having so little time left - or rather, I'd rather not think about it. At all. So, I'll be forcing that out. 
I've been wanting to increase my humility - thinking more about others, and not thinking about the stuff that I want to think about at that time. Look for more and greater opportunities to serve, as well as help others to grow and to progress. It came as a result of the branch conference last Sunday, and I really dislike this keyboard. The backspace key is too small.
Also, because I'm no longer in Maravatio, tampoco es mi compañero Elder G (And Elder G isn't my companion, either). Ahora es Elder W, de Arizona (Now it is Elder W, from Arizona). Tiene 4 meses en el campo (He's been out in the field four months).

I'm just glad that I'm still in the mission, and that I've made it this far. Part of what helped me get this far was my brothers - I knew that I needed and still need to be an example for them, and that helps me stay focused and so forth. It's quite nice. It also helped me stay in the mission when I was in Naucalli - my, how things have come along. I'm amazed at all that has happened and that I've learned in the past 21 months - and I look forward to these last three with great excitement.

No pido perdón para mi español (I don't apologize for my Spanish).

Muchas gracias por su amor y apoyo (Thank you very much for your love and help),

Élder Newman

Vamos a hablar el español porque es más fácil (We're going to speak Spanish because it's much easier).

Monday, October 20, 2014

¡Miren! Un correo más grande esta vez‏ (Look! A bigger email this time)

I'm forgetting English, if you couldn't tell. Also, Día de los Muertos se acerca (Day of the Dead is getting closer):

​The white thing on top is called muertito. It means "little/small dead (guy)". Underneath that is a type of bread called lagrimas, or tears. It's incredibly delicious.

Also, I was stressed and kinda distracted last night, so with only two whiteboard markers, I drew this where I keep track of all our investigators:

​I know it's more shaped like an egg than it is a ball. But I was tired, it was past 10, and I only have two colors. Those two.

Anyways, now for something that actually might help cada uno de ustedes (each one of you):

Last night, I was feeling kinda... well, discouraged isn't the word. Concerned is more like it, as it's the last week of the change and things aren't looking to great for anyone in the district right now. The Sisters haven't baptized at all, and we've got one, but I want all of us to end the transfer very, very well, with a baptism. Especially since this is Elder G's first transfer and the final of one of the sisters in my district. So, sitting there and trying to think, "What do I need to do to get everything working for the end of this week?", I had the distinct impression to read my patriarchal blessing. So I do. I reach a paragraph that just drills itself into my mind. And I think, why did I never see this before and why do I need to know this right now? And then I get it - I need to ask my companion for a blessing of counsel. So I do, and then we have a marvelous spiritual experience. I learned a lot - and it helped me a ton. The Spirit filled the room, and it was fantastic.

I'm expecting to leave Maravatio this change, given some clues that the Zone Leaders have given me. THey don't know the changes yet - supposedly. But they are dropping a lot of clues that I'm not going to finish off here in Maravatio. I'm so glad for this blessed opportunity that I had to be here. I learned so many things.

Learn what you can. Also, I believe that I'll be sent out of Maravatio next week, at the end of changes. That's no fun, but oh well. Wherever the Lord sends me, I will go. It's exciting, too.

Well, that's it for now - I'm out of time. Thanks for everything, everyone, and we'll see you next year!

Because "next year" sounds longer than "in January" or "in three months".

Elder Newman (Mexicano)

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


Somehow I was writing too much and I'm almost out of time, sooo... we had three days to work last week. So, yes... my week was very, very busy, seeing as there was a zone meeting, a conference for new missionaries and their trainers all the way over in Mexico City (2.5-3 hour bus ride, one way) which took us two days (because we live so far away), and as such, we had... about two full days to do work. Friday and Saturday. It was weird. But, either way, we still managed to have a decent week in that we brought investigators to church! It's a family, and the father lived around Sandy, Utah for a few years. Went to temple square and everything. It's pretty fantastic - I have high hopes for this family.

Also, every time there's a zone meeting, as District Leader, I need to give a talk. I enjoyed the last one I gave - it was about how having joy, being happy, and projecting that onto others is key to being successful. It helped even me!

No baptisms :( but this week, yes.

And that's it for right now.

Thanks for all your support! Adios!

Elder Newman Mexicano

Monday, October 6, 2014

Oct. 6, 2014

About riding a bike with no handle bars... it's just me saying, "Look, Mom! No hands!" as I ride down the streets to an appointment. Clearly, I don't shout it out, but it's really nice to do once in a while.

And yes, I did get to watch all sessions of conference. IT WAS SO BEAUTIFUL AND THE MUSIC TO BOOT AND HOW I WANT TO LIVE THAT WEEKEND AGAIN (for the most part... Saturday, we got about 0 work done because we were doing a lot of interviews). I got so many answers to my question, "What do I do now?" I got it because on Saturday Morning, I noticed that I didn't have a question to take with me into conference and I said, "Well, that's great! What do I do now? ...OH, I GET IT!" And therefore, I'm going to be focusing myself on drawing nearer to Christ - getting to know Him on a more personal level. Thankfully, there was a lot of material about that this last conference - including helping out the poor. I'm going to be fasting even better now! :D

So... yes. And the baptismal service also went very well - the nice little girl (because she's only 11) went in with very little fear. We're going to see about baptizing her 8 year old sister this week, too. It makes me happy - and this time, I might perform the baptism. But we'll see, since Elder G is still struggling with the Spanish. The only thing I didn't like is that my agenda flew - jumped out of my suit pocket - into the font. So... that didn't make me too happy. Oh well - it's almost dried out now. Almost.

​My companion´s too tall in that pic and I love Windows 8 and fast internet. All of which I have and are true right now. The other man is a member of the branch presidency.

And that's about it for this week. P got baptized and I had a wonderful General Conference.

Tell Jared that I say, "Gracias. ¡Tendré un buen día y espero que lo tengas también!" ("Thank you. I have a good day and hope you have too!")

Now I'm going to apply General Conference to my life and move forward with Más poder.

Thanks for your support,

el Élder Newman mexicano

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Sep. 30, 2014

Aaaand... well, last week was relatively uneventful, sadly. I want investigators, but we've been having some hard times finding them. We did find some Saturday and Sunday night, but because of our Zone Conference yesterday, we weren't able to really get to our appointments. Therefore, we're going to be looking to recover them and gain more, because this week it's "2 for 1" as my Zone Leader said - we have the opportunity to get an investigator to have 2 church attendances on Saturday and Sunday because of General Conference.

Anyway, that's good that Andrew's left arm was broken (His little brother had a bike accident the week before). I don't know how I could live if I break my right arm - although I suppose I could finally have a reason to be ambidextrous. I also crashed on my bike on Saturday - there was a small gap between some grates in the road, and I was super deep in thought. Before I know it, I'm flying forward as my bike tire gets wedged into the gap, completely stopping the bike but not me. I was just fine - just a little sore in the right arm and scraped up. That makes three crashes.

I've been getting some strong hints that I'll be leaving Maravatio next change. I don't want to go, but that's how I feel it's going to happen. So, I've got to get the area very well prepared - my companion needs to know the area, we need to have plenty of investigators, and so forth. Everything needs to be ready for the time I go. And if I stay, then it's all good - I can continue working as normal.

And we're going to baptize this week, so I'm really happy about that. I didn't write yesterday because we had a Zone Conference in a city two hours away from here and we didn't get back until 7:00 yesterday. So... yes.

I also crashed on my bike.





And so ends this email.

Elder Newman

Monday, September 22, 2014

Sep. 22, 2014

My new companion is Elder G, from Utah. He's a big guy, and he's got some troubles with Spanish and keeping up with me on my bike, but aside from that, he's a good guy. Training's a WHOLE LOT HARDER THAN I THOUGHT. But that's because I pretty much have to carry the area by myself, lead the district correctly, and make sure that my companion still feels well. I'm just super glad that he doesn't complain (he got some cramps last week... :P) He's willing to work hard and to learn, and I've been learning a lot better recently, surprisingly enough. It took me a few days to get used to this kind of responsibility - but I've got it now.

But yeah... I didn't adjust to having a brand-new new companion as fast as I would have liked, so not much happened in the area. On the positive side, however, I did manage to break my all time record of contacts. 42 contacts in a single week! To make it even better, all of those happened from Wednesday to Sunday. On Saturday, I fought to get 10 - that was a task. But now I know I can do it again, so I SHALL!

I was in the city la Noche Mexicana (Mexican Independence Day, Sep. 16), and WOW that was a long night. I forgot my earplugs here in Maravatio, so I had to sleep to the sound of fireworks, music, and shouting. So... that was interesting.

Also, I'm now very nearly Mexican. I'm forgetting English, my accent is getting better, I eat a lot of tortillas, y nopal es lo mejor (and cactus is the best). Puse mucho en mis tacos de chuleta con fréjoles (¿se supone que se escribe con la "e" y no con la "i"?) y también salsa de mole. Fue muy rico. Sé que me falta mucho aún, pero allí voy. ("I put a lot on my tacos cutlet with beans (is it supposed to be spelled with the "e" and not the "i "? ) And mole sauce. It was very rich. I know a lot yet, but there I go." Thank you, Google Translate! I think...)

Love you all, and we'll see you all later!

Elder Newman

Monday, September 15, 2014

Sep. 15, 2014

EVERYTHING IS ABOUT TO GO REALLY WELL OUT HERE IN MARAVATIO - we brought about 4 people to church, 3 for the first time and one for the second time. I was incredibly happy for that.

Anyways, as for changes, I stayed in Maravatio, like Presidente Whitehead said I would. But, to make things interesting, I'M TRAINING!  I like training. Well, I'd better like it. I'm going to find out who tomorrow. I'm super excited for this. Nervous, but if the Lord trusts me, I trust me. It'll be an adventure, seeing as I've never done this before and the new Elder's American, so who knows how much Spanish he's got. But either way, I'm excited to meet him tomorrow. I'll send a pic when I can (prolly next week).

AAAAAAND... well, G and D are still doing well. It really helps that D's daughter and grandchildren are members that are almost 100% active (like.... 99.9999999999999% active), and for G, I hope we can get some of her family members baptized so that she can have a little more support. Also, the spacebar doesn't work quite as well as I'd like. BUT OH WELL. Things are well, we're progressing, and things are going well!

In Maravatio, there's a railway that passes right through the middle of town. I have to have crossed and walked along that thing more than 100 times now. It's also very, very loud, so whenever it passes, the entire town knows. Well, almost the whole town.

Well, that's about it for right now. And some music is just straight out strange. I'm glad that it's not all over the place and that it doesn't really distract me.

Love you all, and thanks for your support!

Elder Newman

Monday, September 8, 2014

Sep. 8, 2014

G and D are doing just fantastic! D's just a springy, hard working older man, and G just loves participating in the Church. I hope she gets a calling soon - it'll help her out a ton. New investigators... not so much, although we did find a sister that lived in Twin Falls for quite some time. Her youngest son was born there; they've been here in México again for about the same amount of time as I have. It was really fun. Only problem is that I barely remember anything about Idaho, except that we live in Meridian and that's right next to Boise and other small, insignificant details. Like sarsaparilla.

So... in other news about other things... it's the last week of the change, so that'll interesting. We're almost positive about who's staying and who's going, which is nice, but we have no idea who'll be coming. I hope that one of the sisters in the district gets another sister that has more experience - they've had a tough time - and I hope to either get an ex-zone Leader (doubtful), ex-District Leader (also doubtful), or somebody like that. Someone with experience - although training would be amazing, too. But who knows - all I know is that odds are very likely that I'm staying, so that's good enough for me.

Aaaand... well, it was a tough and a tiring week without much progress, with the exception of G and D being confirmed. That made me really happy.

Well, that's about it for everything now. Although I have realized that I have changed A TON over the course of the mission and that I've changed A LOT during my 2.5 months out here in Maravatio. I love it so much. And I don't want to go home at all - but that's coming, whether I like it or not.

I try not to think of such things. I'd rather think about baptizing families.

And no photos because I barely took any.

And CHAP is still in use! (My program to analyze the phone calls of the missionaries here)

Elder Newman

Monday, September 1, 2014

Building by Destruction‏

I love strange titles like that

Anyways, back to the (way more) important stuff:

I tore down a wall last week:

It was for Domingo, who got baptized yesterday, with Griselda and someone else who was baptized by the sister missionaries:

​Things are going really well here in Maravatio. The Church is growing - we had 80 people in Church yesterday. Last week there were only 65 people there. Now I just need to find a massive family to baptize and then I will be a happy man.

Well, I am a happy man already. But then I'll be a lot happier. And they will be too. So, if you know and families down here in Maravatio that I could visit... tell me so I can help them please.

It's incredibly important.

Also I had a dream last night too...I think we were in the house of President Whitehead getting ready to go back home. You (Mom) and Dad were there because that's how it's going to happen. Aaand... I was sad because I didn't want to go :( "I don't want to go!" 

Thanks for all your support, everyone!

Elder Newman

Monday, August 25, 2014

Elder Newman Has Come Into Possession of a Car's Side Mirror‏

My companion was hit by a car yeseterday (he's alright) and the side mirror was torn off by who knows what. As the little coward sped off without doing anything legal, I gathered the pieces and put it together. I'm bringing it home with me.

So, what else happened? Well... we've got two people lined up for baptism this week. Domingo and Griselda (prayers appreciated). That's the big news. It's going to be a tough week - we fell into a slump last week, and we need to recover from it and do all that we can in order to help the sisters in our district do better as well. So, we'll be working a ton.

Especially since Elder Rizabal's bike was trashed and my bike's chain completely fell off for no reason whatsoever. So... we've got no bikes now. But that's okay, there are some others.

Thanks for all your support!

Elder Newman

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


So, what does that have to do with anything? Well, it's quite simple, my dear [insert your name here]. During a Zone Meeting last week, I was feeling quite down on myself. And then, somewhere towards the start, the words "Más poder" entered my mind. And I couldn't get them out. It began to fill me with excitement, happiness, and desire. And to prove that it helped, our numbers (we report how much we did a certain task every now and again - lessons taught, people contacted, etc.) were a lot better. Every time I felt down, I needed to contact, or something like that, I just told myself, "Más poder. ¡Más Poder!"

For you non Spanish-speakers, 1) learn Spanish, and 2) it means "More power."

Más Poder, in this case, means working harder. Más poder means loving the people more. Más poder means doing more than normal. Más poder means being obedient. Más poder means being patient while the owners of the ciber café keep on trying to discover what a certain song is through a ridiculous playlist while someone listens to Gangnam Style on another computer. Más poder is simply that: more power gained from doing more.

Also, here's my journal entry from when I fell in the mud:

SO... YES. Más poder is pretty much my catch phrase or whatever you want to call it. It's helped me quite a bit, actually.

Well, that's all I've got for right now. We're teaching two fantastic people right now, the father of a member and a woman whose familial religious diversity is quite amazing. And all are telling her, "No, come with us / stay with us / don't even think about going there / etc." Nonetheless, she's staying strong, saying, "The truth is here." She's fantastic.

Thank you all for your support and help!

Elder Newman

Tuesday, August 12, 2014


And I'm still losing weight. Elder McKinley gave me a belt that fit perfectly 6 weeks ago, but now it's too big. I'm going to need new pants.

What else is up? Well, things are going well in the area. Better than before. We had 3 people fall through on Sunday, but then God sent 2 more people to Church, so that made me and Elder R happy. I'm beginning to see some more areas where we can improve - obedience being a key one. What I mean to say is that I'm going to drag us to be obedient, if necessary. As one man who I interviewed last week said, "[We're] too old. [We] don't have time to break the commandments of God!"

Everyone's too old to break themselves against the commandments.

(I think I get some points for that statement, right?)

I like progress. And now I'm realizing again just how much the Mission has changed me.

... I'm so incredibly happy for this.

Well, I've got to write some other emails, so that's it for now.

Elder Newman

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

I Drew a Picture‏

...But that's no surprise.:

 ​One of my recent projects is drawing all 42 principles found in Preach My Gospel on small cards, to use in lessons and in contacts. I've still got a lot of work (and practice) to do, but here's one of my favorites:

​Translated: "Our Loving Heavenly Father Reveals His Gospel in Every Dispensation."

For those of you who don't know, a "dispensation", in simple terms, is a time when God's authority is here on the Earth. The opposite is Apostasy, which is when God's authority is absent from the earth. Both have happened quite a few times.

Anyways, this is one of my favorites so far. My other favorite is the one about Apostasy. I'll have to send that soon.

Also, we got lost a couple days ago, and we found some beautiful landscapes:

​Clear skies, green trees, dirt roads, bicycles... things are pretty nice out here.

All that's left is to baptize the entire pueblo.

Thank you all for all your support!

Elder Newman