Spencer Michael Henze served a 2 year, full time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints among the people of Oaxaca, Mexico (pronounced wa-ha-ka). This is the week-by-week account of his service. Elder Henze returned with honor March 21, 2012.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

lay down on your carpet in your air conditioned house

Supskis??? just droppin by with the report from good ol Oaxaca Mexico. its been a good week. not too much in the way of success but we´re working hard and thats all that matters. (i have to tell myself that every day trying to fight being discouraged) HOWEVER, looks like we´re gonna see another baptism on the 30! heck yes! yes, its Irma. you might be thinking ¨um... we already knew she was going to get baptized from your last letter.¨ well ya, but a lot of times crap happens and they don´t end up following through with it. BUT, she´s already got her interview done and everything!!! she´s pumped. I think i´m even more pumped though. so that´ll be 2 for this transfer and 3 in total. I think i´m gonna get to perform the ordinance too so that´ll another booyah. hopefully this time I get it right the first time :)

So, a funny story that happened this week while contacting was that we hiked up this trail thing to this ...dwelling and shouted ¨buenas tardes!!¨ and a lady came to the ¨door¨ and had a unique attitude. i don´t quite know how to explain it but it was like an adult with the mentality of a 10 yr old but only because she was an indigenous person who barely spoke Spanish and didn´t know anything about the culture of normal people so ya, she was kinda seeming scared of us a bit and a little irritated. i dont know... anyways we started talking to her and after some small talk we started talking about religion and Elder Tolentino started with his lesson 2 ¨teaser¨ which consists of questions like ¨have you ever wondered where you lived before this life? or why you´re here? or where you´re gonna go after you die?¨ well the answer to the first two were ¨...no¨ and the answer to the third was said with a slightly hopeless/whyd you have to bring that up type of tone. her words were: ¨well we all go to hell no?¨ I almost couldn´t keep myself from laughing out loud. i don´t know, this is probably one of those ¨you had to be there¨ stories but i was definitely not expecting that. it was great :)

in other news, the pintor family finally came to church this week!!! remember them? can you believe it? I was pumped. they always say ¨they´ll try¨ but this time they actually came! now all they need to do is find a way to get back to the united states to get married again... haha.
well like the subject line of this email says, this is the beginning of week six of the change. that means most likely i´ll be packin´my bags and heading for a new area. i don´t know if i´m excited or scared to be honest... i´ve gotten somewhat comfortable here and we just barely got a bishop yesterday. the dude´s cool too. he´s been a mission prez, temple prez, and bishop before. so he knows his stuff. I kind of feel bad for the poor guy that he has to serve more but he accepted the calling like a champ even though he´s got to be like 80 and has a ton of work to do to clean up the ward. a life of service...

alrighty, well thats about all i´ve got time for today. thank you all for the messages and letters you´ve sent me! and the packages! I absolutely love them. mom, the apples were super awesome but unfortunately a bit rotten but its the thought that counts! the candy has been terrific though. I had a good time with the nerd costume too as you´ll soon see in pics and a couple videos :) oh also if you would all do me a favor and lay down on your carpet in your air conditioned house for a few minutes in my behalf. those things don´t exist here...
until next week,

Elder Spencer Henze

ps. attached are some pics. the first is from the baptism last week. the others are some samples of my nerd costume

*You guys know the drill! Click the pics to see them larger! - Jamie*

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


It´s me again! another week further into the mish and reporting the findings! haha. like a scientist or something. anyways, that was random. this week went really well. I know I say that almost every week, but for reals it was legit. It started off kinda slow cuz we had to drop some investigators and contact a lot, but we had a streak of good fortune towards the end! so turns out José got baptized this past Saturday and it was a huge hit! literally almost the entire ward showed up. so cool.

Elder Tolentino and I were there practically all day getting ready for the baptism cleaning, figuring stuff out with the water, getting all the keys we needed to get out the TV and stuff, and some more cleaning. the font takes about 3.5 hours to fill so during the wait we cleaned the entire baptism room really really well cuz it was a mess then continued on to clean the bathroom cuz i´m pretty sure nobody ever cleans it, then the hallway, and then I saw the womens bathroom... holy crap! it was horrendous. for the interest of any food you might have just eaten i´m going to spare you the details, but wow... I couldn´t believe it. so out of respect for the church building and the poor women who had to deal with that I cleaned it thoroughly. It felt nice to have been able to make such a huge improvement in only a couple hours.
so ya, like I said we were there all day getting ready and making sure everything was going to go smoothly and it did. it was perfect. Very cool.

also we got a golden reference from the same family that introduced us to Adrian. during lesson one while I was explaining how it was important to be baptized the same way as christ with the authority and immersion and how during the great apostasy they changed the ordinances and stuff and she realized that her baptism wasn´t legit so she interrupted us and said, ¨so if I wanted to get baptized in this church what would I have to do?¨ then explained cuz she already got baptized in the catholic church and was worried that would be a problem so we were like... wait, are you asking to be baptized? so we explained what the significance of baptism is and that really all you need is a desire to make a covenant with God to keep his commandments. then gave the example from Amos 8 where the dude got baptized with only having faith and a desire. then we invited her to be baptized the 30th and she said yes! how cool is that??? so hopefully everything works out with her. we taught her lesson 2 Saturday too. super awesome.

AND one of our investigators who we halfway dropped showed up to church all by himself! so we taught him the word of wisdom during Sunday school haha. hopefully he comes back :) so ya, the end of the week was awesome.
well thats the report from this week. no super cool stories to tell but definitely exciting stuff for me. I thank you all for your prayers and support like always and hope this letter finds well every one of you who reads it. have a great week!

Elder Spencer Henze

Monday, October 11, 2010

Another Week in Mexico Land

Hey y´all! as always thanks for the sweet emails! unfortunately the computer i´m using is a pile of trash and consumed all of my time loading simple email pages so i have hardly any time to write today. oh the joys. however, it DOES have a card reader! so I could send you some pics. this week has been good. lots of visiting people, sharing messages, trying to get them to come to church, asking for references, and contacting. we found some new investigators but none that you could call goldens. but this week for sure! we also are going to baptize the husband of one of our most faithful members of the ward so that will be a huge blessing for her family so i´m excited for that. that´ll be this saturday the 16th and the 24th we get a bishop! score. alright well thats about all i´ve got time for today. I love you all and thank you for all your support. Adios!
Elder Spencer Henze
New pics!

(below) reading the super long banner/poster/letter
we (us & the Harefeld side of the family)
made for him at our family reunion this summer.

>from today's emails to Jamie & Cory:
"things are going pretty good here in mexico land. just trying to stay away from the police that cruze around in the backs of trucks with m-16s and trying to snap pics incognido...ly and becoming a professional at dealing with being lied to, laughed at, and disrespected all day. sundays are cool though cuz its like being a celebrity in the ward. its not all bad though we´ve definitely got a baptism this weekend! saturday the 16th that is. I´m really excited for this one cuz its the husband of a sister in the ward that has been a member for more than 10 years without hope of having an eternal family because her husband was an alcoholic but he decided to change his life and after a few lessons with us he decided that what we taught him was good and decided to get baptized! he´s really enthusiastic. i'll send pics."

" theres a few things id like to share with you about mexico. well, oaxaca. 1) it is not uncommon to see an entire family cruzing around on one small motorcycle. "hey kids who wants to go to the centro?!" "I do I do!!!!!" "alright lets hop on the moto and go!" all the way there the little 6 year old is floppin around on the back trying to keep his feet out of the chain... its a funny pic. 2) if you were wondering what the little mexi youths are bumpin to its called panamericano. search it. the music video should be like an old school movie style. I tried to find a link but this computer blows and i dont have time to deal with it. also the style is similar to what kids wore in the US about 10 years ago. mixed with some later trends that dont work together. 3) there are no laws on the roads. if it goes, you can drive it. even if it paints the air black."

"dude Cor- heres a link to that song. this is officially the most popular song in Oaxaca. just imagine a bunch of cars driving by with mexican youth inside bumpin to this. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6yvjPBMsKqk (below) its about american bread... also i wanted to tell you that the main types of music here are either straight up techno or old school mexi stuff you hear on the spanish channel. anyways. later."

Monday, October 4, 2010

I saved my comp's life that day...

hello again everyone!

let me just start off by saying for those of you who might be wondering about how all the flooding and stuff has impacted me, rest easy. a lot of the coast flooded badly and some parts of the city less than 10 miles away from me but my area has been pretty safe and normal. i´ve been very lucky.

so anyways this week has been pretty slow, but good. we officially have two people who are progressing. i´m not sure whats in the air keeping the other slew of people from doing extremely simple tasks are important to their eternal salvation, but i guess its just a lot harder than it seems. haha i dunno. we contacted a bunch this week and picked up a couple new potentials but nothing super promising.
Elder Tolentino tells me this is the most difficult area he´s been in and he´s now got more than a year so I guess I have only up to go from here! we´ve been working hard though and becoming more unified. its been good.

I´m finding that each companion I have has just a few little things that drive me crazy kinda like almost every past girl i´ve dated (except for the one who might be reading this right now of course :) ) haha but just like them there's always much more good than bad and if I just focus on the good and ask for help from the lord to have patience and let those little things that bug me just roll off, everything is good and we can move on and strengthen.

this has been a great opportunity to learn how to develop relationships with people. I always had a little fear that I would never find a wife that didn´t have any of those little things that bugged me, and i´m pretty sure that's true because that's not logical to expect, but what gives me hope is that I can overcome them with her just like i´m overcoming them with my companions. only it should be easier with her because I´ll have more deep love for her and stuff.

haha well anyway, conference! conference was legit I got to watch it in English! that was a score. i was kinda worried i might not get as much out of it if I had to watch in Spanish but there were enough of us Americans and random students there and stuff that they opened another room for the English people. the people here don´t have satellite tv or radios that get conference so they have to go to the stake center to watch it. so naturally the only well attended session was Sunday morning. haha. a lot of people think its just the same thing repeated 5 times so they don´t even know they´re missing anything. be grateful my friends that you are 50 years ahead of Oaxaca Mexico.

Oh another cool tidbit, while watching conference I was sitting next to Elder Forrest. he´s also my district leader. I don´t know if you remember, but last conference in April one of the talks talked about him and his story about having his dad die... Neil L. Anderson I believe. so that was cool.

also I had the unique opportunity to perform the life saving maneuver called the Heimlich maneuver on my companion the other day. he decided to breathe in some water and started choking hardcore and motioning to me that he couldn´t breathe and started panicking so I went up behind him on a very busy road and performed the Heimlich. He resumed breathing and after a 10 minute break or so everything was back to normal. that doesn´t happen every day! well there´s a lot more to tell you but i´m out of time. I love you all and will talk to you next week! read your scriptures and pray. keep your tree strong (see Alma 32)

E. Spencer Henze