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.

Monday, April 18, 2011


Gooooood Afternoon!

Just want to start off by letting you all know that my health is back up to where it should be. Not perfect yet, but considering what I eat on a regular basis and the standard of cleanliness, I`m doing great :) Today is a special day because its changes day again! so heres the update. my companion went to a place called Nochixtlan which is in the mountains and i`m going to stay in Ocotlán for at least another change. For my companion they are sending me another new missionary to train. His name is Elder Torrez and is mexican. I haven`t met him yet because he just got here today and the president has to do his run down with all the noobs first so i`ve been kickin it here in xoxocotlán (like hoho-coat-lan) which is here in the city with the zone leaders waiting for him. its been a pretty interesting p-day haha. I left Ocotlán last night around 7:30pm and arrived at the bus station, which is like the central hub for changes, and kicked it there until about 12:45am helping the Zone Leaders get everyone on and off the buses to their new areas. it was pretty intense. During the which I got to accompany some of the new American arrivals back to the offices from the bus station and talk with them a bit. there were about 10 others at the offices just chillin there and when we got there and walked in it was like when sid started up the claw in the toy machine with the little green dudes on toy story 1. "
OOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooo....." they all instantly fixed their attention on us and after a few seconds one by one they all took their turns approaching me and Elder Skaggs and attempting to make conversation with us in Spanish. I could hardly understand anything they were saying... it reminded me of how I was back in the day :) their enthusiasm for the language was impressive, but I was getting really confused about what language to speak to them. so to save time I just answered in pure English. The struggle was that if I answered in Spanish, they probably wouldn´t understand and they might feel bad about themselves and i´d have to repeat myself and say it in English anyways. and if I answered in English then I would be the one to look stupid and the conversation would go a lot smoother. so I chose the latter. It was funny though. they´re so... new! haha. I like to see the new dudes and think about how they are now and then think about how in such a short amount of time they`ll be accomplishing great things out here. The growth rate is insane and seeing the noobs reminds me of that.

anyways, This week we decided to go the extra mile to try to win the confidence of Domingo. (the dad of the family we were going to baptize at the beginning of the change but dropped for awhile due to his hostile reaction when we taught the lesson of the restoration to him and his family) When I received council from the president and about 2 other people in separate occasions of talking to them about this family in particular and having them all tell me that most likely the problem was that the husband (Domingo) felt a lack of confidence with us because we were teaching his wife and kids while he was out of the state working. so we decided to give it another fair shot with them. Him especially. we visited on Tuesday and won an argument with him about going to church and then offered to come on Wednesday to help him dig his well to help him seeing as how he needed the help and was sick with a stomach infection.

well, Wednesday morning at 7:00am sharp we arrived at his house with our work clothes on and ready to work. I was first to be lowered into the already about 25ft deep hole using just a rope (in the which i tied a bowline knot I learned in scouts to make a loop harness which worked perfectly i might add). turns out the bottom of the well was pure rock. no lie. pure, solid, gray, rock. I was down there with a pick and a mini sledge hammer for over an hour and a half straight chizzling away at the rock. after I couldn`t lift the hammer anymore I had them pull me up and i had managed to take out about one bucketload of rock chippings. hardly any help at all but man was I dead afterward. my comp made fun of me for how little i got out and so after a breakfast of boiled pumpkin and beans he was lowered into the well and gave it a shot while I helped Domingo stack a bunch of blocks. (its noteworthy to add that while i was chizzling away down there my companion was chatting away doing nothing) and after about the same amount of time he got out about half of what I did. haha. it was definitely an experience. I don`t think i`ve ever sweated so much in my life.

on saturday we went back and taught him about the sabbath day commandment and invited him as powerfully as I knew how to church. I also gave him a tie of mine as part of the invitation and tied it for him and everything.
well, turns out he didn´t go. but at least I can say I tried my best. we´re gonna keep visiting them every once in a while, but sadly I`m not sure what else I can do for them... their agency is a factor I can`t control.

the rest of the last week of the change was way good. we found a bunch of new people to teach through the new convert family who is quickly becoming the strength of the branch. they´re awesome. So me and my new "kid" have some work waiting for us already and since he`ll be much more willing to work with me than the last comp was we should be able to bust it out this change. Thats the goal anyways. I`m officially teaching the English classes. I have 4 official students already and plan to make fliers and pass them out to the whole pueblo so shortly we should have lots more. the best part is that NONE of the 4 are members :D booyah.

I hope all is well with everyone back home! As always thank you so much for your love and support with your prayers, your letters and your positive thoughts towards me and what i`m doing out here. It helps more than I could ever tell you and the most important part is that through helping me you are personally helping further the work of the Lord in this little corner of the vineyard. I LOVE YOU ALL!!!!

Elder Spencer Henze