This is our blog about the adventures and experiences of two Snyder kids as they serve missions, one in Mexico and one in Japan, for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. These are the weekly emails and pictures they send home.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Kelsey's email today was relating a very personal and powerful experience she went through and, out of respect for her and the sacredness of that experience, I won't be sharing her email.  Just know that she's doing well and is growing so much as a person and as a missionary.  She did send some cute pictures, though, that I would love to share!

Family Home Evening:

My yummy day in Huauchi:

Our investigator wasn't home but his puppies were!:

Monday, January 19, 2015

Merry late Christmas!

Hola familia!!! Another week in beautiful Huauchinango has come and gone and love y'all one week's worth more! 

This week was definitely hard. After a great week like last week, it seemed like everything went wrong this week. Paty and Ignacio were loving the gospel (the taxi couple; Paty is the one who heard in her mind "The true church is La Iglesia de Jesucristo de los Santos de los Ultimos Dias" 10 times). Well, we received a text from them completely out of the blue that said that they made a decision to keep going to their old church. We were shocked and confused. So we practically ran to their house to see what had happened. Turns out they had heard some weird things about the reformed church and polygamy, and about baptism for the dead in the temple that freaked them out. So, we taught them with all our hearts the best lesson that we could possibly muster. It wasn't perfect, but it was the best we could do. By the end of the lesson, I felt like my heart was sitting on their coffee table. And before we left, they were nodding their heads in agreement with us. So, we thought all was well.

Unfortunately, the next day we received another text that said they had made up their minds and don't want us to pass by anymore. It was so sad. I love this family so much... I felt like they squished my heart! And to add to the sad news, we had to drop another progressing investigator who we've been teaching for a while, and only 3 of our investigators showed up to church when we should have had more than 10. 

This week was just a lot of hardships. Today, it forced me to think about whether all this is a punishment from something we're doing wrong or a trial of our faith, to refine us and make us stronger for the future. After thinking for a long time about this, I am sure that it is a trial of our faith. We are being obedient with exactness. We are striving to have the Spirit with us at all times. A few weeks ago, we received what we perceived as a witness that we are going to baptize every week, and I think right now the Lord is testing our faith to see just how much we believe in and work according to His power. Even though we don't know who we are going to baptize this week, we have a goal of 1 baptism, because we know it is His will to baptize someone in Huauchinango this week. Faith!!!

But, good news! We had a baptism! E., the wife and mom of 2 recent converts was baptized on Saturday! So wonderful!

So I'm doing good! Life as a missionary is crazy. Sometimes I can't believe how many emotions I feel in one day. But it's the best! I am happy! Also, I GOT YOUR PACKAGES!!! We had a zone conference this week, so I finally received my packages from the zone leaders! One from Mom, Brooke, Grandma, and Aunt Lizard, plus cards from Erica and Hna. Afualo. It was so funny - I traveled the 1.5 hour long journey back to Huauchinango with my arms FULL of boxes! I felt so loved! :) You all are seriously the best!!! I can't tell you how happy it made me. Also, I never wrote this in an email, but I got my package from Kell a few weeks ago. It was SO dang cute! My first package in Mexico. :) I took lots of pictures but they are on Hna. Zenteno's camera and she has forgotten it every week. Haha. One day I'm gonna send the pics of Kelly's package and you'll see how cute it really was. 

Anyway, I love you all so much!!! You're my favorites! The gospel is true! Never forget how important is is. It is the MOST important, literally the only thing that matters.

Con todo mi amor,
Hna. Snyder
Merry late Christmas to me!


Sweet baptism!

Thank you, Grandma, for my cute new outfit and bracelet!

Monday, January 12, 2015

First baptisms!

Hola familia!

Oh what a marvelous week it has been here in the great city of Huauchinango! My first baptism of the mission!!! We baptized the daughters of Maria:, Fernanda and Magali! We started teaching these girls in my first or second week in Mexico, and it's been amazing to witness the changes in their hearts and in their family in the past weeks. These girls are young but they have felt the Spirit witness of the truth. I know that they are ready for a lifetime of service and learning in the Gospel of Jesus Christ. I can't tell you how it feels to be a part of something like this. It's not just life-changing but eternity-changing. To know that you even played the smallest role in someone's conversion to the Savior Jesus Christ is indescribable! So, yeah. I'm happy.

This week was crazy. It was hard but fabulous, and I learned so much. After our incredible week last week, Satan was working hard to destroy our companionship and our faith this week. All I'll say is that I learned a lot about humility, repentance, and the enabling power of the Atonement. In the end, we triumphed over Satan and accomplished and surpassed almost all of our goals for the week. I'll give you the rundown: 2 baptisms and confirmations, 7 investigators with a solid baptismal date, 12 investigators at church, 45 lessons taught, and 11 new investigators. I guess you could say I'm happy about those numbers... !!!!!!!!!!!!!

More fun stuff about Mexico - I had the first food in Mexico that I absolutely had to choke down. Chicharron en salsa verde. Chicharron is basically real pork rinds. It's literally fried pig fat, and it's all the rage here. Well when you chop it up and put it in warm salsa verde, it becomes soggy pig fat. And it is, as you might imagine, disgusting. I had to eat about 25 torillas to get it down and it took at least half and hour. Despite all that has happened in my mission, chicharron en salsa verde was probably the most traumatic.

Also, yesterday I had another grave experience when we had to climb a mountain on our hands and knees. It had rained pretty much all week, so the ground was pretty wet. But we forgot to think about that when we started ascending up some natural dirt stairs on the side of a very steep mountain. It ended up taking like 20 minutes on our hands and knees. I literally thought I was going to go rolling down this mountain and possibly die. But I guess we can just chalk it up to the Mexican experience!

I also had a pretty fun experience when we knocked on a man's door, he let us in, and 20 minutes into the lesson he started America-bashing. I'm talking "America is the country of the diablo" kind of stuff... I won't get into the dirty details but I am very proud of my very best missionary response of a smile and "Well, hermano, I am not here to represent my country but to represent the Lord..."

So that's my email! My investigators are so great. Ignacio (Nacho) and Paty (the taxi couple) are doing so great. Nacho is all pumped about having the priesthood and... Oh man, they are so great! I am loving being a missionary right now. I am learning and growing and loving the people. Hna. Zenteno and I are really finding our nitch and teaching great lessons. And the fruits of our labors are finally starting to show! 12 investigators at church yesterday. TWELVE! I am happy.

Love you all so much. The Church is true. I know it with all my heart. Have the best week ever! Read your scriptures and say your prayers. :)

Con todo mi amor,
Hna. Snyder

 Beautiful baptisms:

Cute little guy with my umbrella:

 My matching botas y sombrilla :)

An example of how crazy my hair is in Huauchi!

Nacho and Paty sent us home with food so we had to take a picture for them:

In the forest. No biggie:)


We bought these avocados for 8 pesos. 1 dollar is equivalent to 14 pesos...

Monday, January 5, 2015

Goals for 2015!


It has been a great week here in Huauchinango. Seriously, probably the best so far. I have a lot to say but feel like I have so little time, so here's hoping it turns out okay. First, an update on the food. :) It's amazing. On New Year's Eve we had tamales with one of my favorite families... oh my gosh. Better than you can imagine. And here in Huauchi they have the BEST tacos turados, which is basically a homemade taquito, but they do something different here where they are in green salsa with queso and crema on top. Oh my heck. Yep. Mexico is great.

Happy New Year! 2014 was fun and challenging, and I definitely have grown more in this year than in any other before it. For 2015, all of my goals are centered around trying to become more like the Savior. This month I am focusing on faith. 

This week was incredible for the work. Hna. Z. and I had an amazing experience the other day. We found out that we are both staying here for at least another cycle! No transfers! So we were talking about his next cycle. We were thinking of each of our investigators and how it is very possible that we can have a baptism every week this cycle. And then we thought, no - we ARE going to have a baptism every week this cycle! And at that moment both of us received a very strong spiritual confirmation that this is indeed the will of God. I felt the Spirit very strongly tell me that we have found the chosen, the prepared, and are going to baptize every week for the next 6 weeks. 

Conequently, we are willing to do everything and anything we can to carry out God's will. I am learning that there is a certain, undeniable power that is present as you testify and promise when you know the will of God. I can't really describe it, but all I can say is that I felt the Spirit very strongly in almost every single lesson this week. I can make promises like success in one's business or absolute peace in one's heart without a second of hesitation. It's strange and crazy, but it is amazing because I know it's His will. 

So, our investigators are doing great! We have a baptism on Saturday!!! The daughters of Maria., Fernando, and Magally. We are so excited!!! Maria and her husband aren't quite ready, but the girls are. On the 17th we have a baptism scheduled for the wife and mom of two members... And I'll keep updating you as the other dates come closer. :)

And now time for some miracles. Remember the couple we found in the taxi who had been praying for a church to marry in? Well they're doing great. In fact, the other day Paty told us some pretty incredible things that have been happening. #1 is that she had prayed for an answer about which is the true church. About a day later, she was resting, but not to the point of sleeping, when she heard a voice very clearly say to her "The true church is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints." 

Yeah. I think that might be an answer!!! Oh my gosh! And then she told us another story, of something that happened the night that we met them. Her son woke up from a nap crying right after we left the taxi. When they asked why he wouldn't stop crying, he said that he had seen God. They kind of brushed it off (he's only 3), but little Abraham reached down and picked up the Restoration pamphlet that we had left with them. He pointed to the picture of the Savior on the cover and said that he had seen Him. 

So, yeah. I don't really know what I can add to those stories but all I can do is testify that I know that this is the true church! I see way too many miracles and feel the Spirit way too strongly to have a doubt in my mind. I know that this is God's work and I am so excited to be a part of it. 

Love you all so much!!! Really with all my heart. You are my favorite people on the planet. Read the scriptures, pray, and do what you know you need to. This year, commit to become more like the person that the Lord needs you to be.

Con todo mi corazon,
Hna. Snyder
Happy New Year!