Wednesday, December 30, 2009

December 30, 2009

It was so good to see and talk to you guys on christmas. I am definitely going to try and use another webcam for mothers day. Yes you guys look different, well more like Allison, Daniel, Hailey, and Jake. haileys got short hair and braces, and jake just looks different, maybe the goofball bowl hair cut. Cut that kids hair ya check.

Other than that Christmas was good. We got saved, we did have 4 dinner appointments, but it got reduced to only 2. We would have died! I was already really full. One of our investigators, Jessica, wasnt feeling well so she didnt cook, so we just talked with her for a while. We ate a lot of food over at the Williams house though. They are the ones whose daughters just moved in from Guayana. We ate a lot and played some card games over there. We taught them how to play "BS", they really love that game. The daughters names are Sue and Niso. Last night Sue told us that she received her answer about the Book of Mormon. She was praying a lot, and was just sitting there, then she just felt this huge desire to read the Book of Mormon, she said that she couldnt put it down, and she felt really good. They are some really good girls, they really do want to learn, they take notes in our lessons, and actually remember what we teach them. They will be baptized on the 17, maybe the 10 if they feel ready.

Shawna's baptism went through!!! I was so happy. We met at the church, had two speakers on baptism and the gift of the Holy Ghost, then we cruised over to the beach. The water was very refreshing, not cold at all, but perfect. Me, Shawna, Elder Harvey and Elder Norman (Witnesses), all walked out together. We had to fight some waves, I have some funny pictures of us getting nailed by them. We stopped at one spot and were about to do it, then a big set came in and hit us, so we had to go out a little further beyond the break. Haha, and when I finished saying the prayer the tide started going out, I got a little scared it would all leave and we would have to wait for the tide to come back, but luckily there was enough water. When Shawna came up she had a huge smile on her face and said, "That felt good, Can we do it again!" Then after we sang a song on the beach and said a prayer and that was that. I had a lot of sand in my pockets. I kept a little bit of it and I will send it back when I get to Puerto Rico as a little memory of my first beach baptism.
On Sunday Elder Harvey confirmed her and she is officially a member. We also had Sue and Niso in church, and Jessica actually drove them to church. It is nice when investigators work together. And then we were sitting there after the sacrament, and I felt a tap on my shoulder, I looked up and it was Richard! We were teaching him a couple of weeks ago, he came to church, and really wasnt sure if God exists. We had pretty much dropped him, so I was very happy/surprised when he showed up. We taught him and his girlfriend yesterday and set baptismal dates with them for the 13 of February. Richard has a lot of changes to make, so he wants some time. But he is doing really well, he has been reading every night, and says that he believes in God now. I am extremely happy.
Last week we played some Cricket with some branch members, and we are playing today as well. We are going to have a lot of people today though, we talked to all the young men in the branch and a couple guys from elders quorum. I pretty much got the hang of it last week. The batting was a little awkward at first because you stand right in front of the wicket (The thing they try to hit with the ball) so you have to hit balls that are coming right at you. The bowling was a little harder to pick up, you have to look it up on line, it is hard. I dont have too much control yet, but I manage.
Well it was so good to see you guys last week, I love you very much and miss you.

Love Elder Hardy

Sunday, December 27, 2009

December 16, 2009

Hey everybody. Just sitting here in St Kitts doing my email, because our flight doesnt leave til tonight and we dont have time to have P Day tomorrow. Well Zone conference was amazing. We learned a good bit about the importance of baptism and about the Savior's baptism. Someone from St Kitts gave president a banjo (Dont know how to spell) for Christmas that they made. It was an authentic banjo which was reall cool. President was just like a little kid on Christmas, he spent the next 15 minutes tuning it while people tried to talk to him. Then we sang a bunch of Christmas songs while he played. It was really cool. Then we had out talent show, and then we had dinner at the Marriot Hotel! It was so nice. I have never been in such a nice Hotel. We had the Italian Buffett, Which was not the usual buffett at all. They have all different kinds of meats (Shrimp, fish, oyster, squid, beef, chicken, etc) you tell them what you want and the sauces and they cook it right there in front of you. It was SOO GOOD! Some of the best Itlaian I have ever had. And there was also a huge mound of dessert and chocolate which was very good as well. We all measured ourselves before we left, and when we came back the average weight gain was 5 pounds. We ate a lot. And president just kept egging us on to go eat more. It was a really fun night.
Alright well gots to get going, I love you all, thank you so much for the package, everything is looking good. Have a very merry christmas, I look forward to talking to you all, I miss you very much.
Elder Hardy

December 13, 2009

Hey family,
Life is good here. We have some solid investigators so it always makes things nice. Shawna is still progressing for the 26 of december and I feel that she will, if she is not yet already, be ready by then. Yesterday was Hero Day, so all the stores were closed so we couldnt email. We also went with some members and the Normans son is in town, on a SWEET hike. It was crazy beautiful. I am definitely taking yall there when we come here. There was a little army fort at the top of this little finger that jets out in the ocean. It is probably 50 yards wide and goes a for a ways. You guys will see pictures, it had a some great sights. Next week is zone conference, so i am looking forward to that. We are going to have a talent show so I barowed a guitar from a member here to practice for it. Me and Elder Harvey are going to sing O Holy night. I still get nervous singing in front of a bunch of people. This is only my second time. But is feels so good to play the guitar again. Yea I hope you guys liked the pants story, it was pretty funny. At the time I was just left in shock, but even later that day I was laughing about it.
Love Elder Hardy

November 26, 2009

Funny story from the other day. We were walking down a street on the way to an appointment, when I heard what sounded like just a lot of noise. Like maybe a lot of cars or somethings,I dont know what. But we were walking talking down this empty street in this neighborhood, and there were no cars. So we kept walking and it kept getting louder. After a minute I looked up at the sky, didnt see any rain or anything, I looked to the side, house, other side, house, then I looked at Elder Harvey, and then we looked behind us and this huge wall of water was following us. It was pooring rain behind us, and it was slowly creeping up on us. So the we started running to look for shelter, we passed a guy working on his car and I yelled out to him to find shelter, but it was too late, we was swallowed up in the rain. We finally reached a nice porch to stand under and let the storm pass by. It was pretty funny, I thought you guys might like the story as well.

Elder Hardy

Sunday, November 1, 2009

October 25, 2009

How is my family doing? Glad to hear everyone survived Jakes birthday. Tell him happy birthday for me now. Cant believe he is 4, thats nuts. Ok, larry go means lets go. Dialect is strange, but we are picking it up ok. Well this week has been pretty good. Rosy didnt come to church, so we got to teach her and find out what is going on and just move the date back for a while, dont know when. But we started teaching a members wife who has a date for the 31 of october. He served a mission and is a counselor in the branch, brother Roberts. He is way nice, been off his mission for a little bit, married a nonmember and she has been coming to church for a year. Just recently she has started showing signs of interest. Before she didnt want the missionaries coming over at all, but now we are pretty good friends. She has really opened up too us. Last night we taught the plan of salvation, and she said with a very sincere voice when we were talking about the celestial kingdom, "I hope I go there." She had some doubts last week, but last night she was really open and it seems like a go. She is just afraid of change, she was hardcore pentacostal before, but they are excited to eventually get married in the temple. We also set a date with a lady yesterday, Andree, she is very sincere as well. we werent able to get a member to come out with us the day before, so we pushed it back a day, then the next day we couldnt get one either. So when we showed up, we told her we couldnt come in because we didnt have a man again, and she said its ok, I got a man to come over. She really wanted to hear our message. Her friend was actaully ruining the lesson, but she was way sweet, he was arguing something, and then she just said, "No if I know this book is true then I leave the lutherin church and join the true church." I was way excited, she understood. So her date if for the 21 of november.
hey they moved zone conference to the 5 of november, so you actually need to send it like the 29th of october, but dont worry about the eccos, just find some nice comfortable brown shoes. Anything is better than what they have here.
I havent got Island fever because even a tiny island seems really big when you are on foot. We cant cover a hundred square miles, so the island still seems huge. but next pday the Normans are taking us on an island tour, so that will be fun. get to see some beautiful beaches. Usually on pday the elders here have just slept for 4 hours. But last week we bought a basketball, so we are going to start playing that, and mixed with cricket it will keep us busy. We have also heard about a zip line that goes through the rain forest so we are going to ask president if we can do that.
That is great you are keeping the quad in service, that and snowboarding and wakeboarding are the only worldy things that I miss. I course I miss my family, that goes with out saying.
I can not believe I have been out a year. It is very strange, I feel very experienced so I feel like the mission is my whole life and there was no life before. So in that sense it feels long, but is seems like yesterday that i was in the MTC saying good bye to you. I only have 8 more transfers, THAT IS NOTHING! I cant believe it. I hear the second year goes by faster. It is kind of scary.
I did know someone named camaron cox. I wasnt friends with him, but i just knew him. So maybe it is the same one, but he aint my buddy or anything. That is a bummer lance got his nice bike stolen. I wont have to buy a bike in puerto rico because they ahve so many left over from Elders who have finished.
Hey well you have a great week, I love you so much and miss you. Keep the faith in the Lord and everything will work out.

Love Elder Hardy

October 14, 2009

Dear fam,
Wow, big week huh? Lots of events going on. Dad, that is sweet you are the 1st counselor! I cant believe that papa bear is the Bishop. It will be weird to not call him that. Maybe I can get away with calling him Papa Bishop? Scott carson huh? You tell him hes a stud.
Bishop Wilkonson, I dont ever think I can call you anything different, you were such a help to me growing up. You came right into the calling right once I needed you the most. Thanks for always being a support to me, and being a great example. I dont know anyone else that can tell you more about the displays in the visitor center at the temple than the actual voice recorded tour. You helped so many youth, you served well, I love you. Love Elder Hardy.
Papa Bear (Bishop Despain) that is going to take some time to get used too, but thank you so much for your service in young mens, everyone loved you. Now you can take it to a ward level. You are the man for the job. Love Elder Hardy.
Well no I am not dissapointed too much about missing the Mercury, Somehow I think i will get through. It might be a little hard to sleep tonight, but I will get through.
Cant belive Allison brought back baby chicks, she always has a suprise to bring home. Well at least it aint for too long. Mr. Davis and Mr Louzek huh? They are some real cool guys, I wish more teachers were like them. School doesnt always need to be serious. I was actaully talking about Mr Davis yesterday, about how he dressed up and sang at some assembly, it was pretty funny.
Dont be too scared, those were three extremely old men, they had to of been pushing 80 years old. I dont think they were actaully going to rob us. But everyone is pretty cool with us here, we dont have too many problems. Sometimes people yell stuff at us but we dont study them. Plus we dont carry around cash, only our cards. So if they do rob us they get nothing. Well Rosy was sick last week, so got to move the baptism to the 25, but all is good, more time to prepare her. Alright im getting kicked off, but I love you all very much.

Love Elder Hardy

October 7, 2009

How ya mean?
You dont understand what wah ah gon mean. Tall! Ya crazy mon! Haha, no you will not find a meaning for it in any spanish translation. That is dialect. The people speak dialect, not really English. But it means whats going on. So how is my family doing? I hope yall enjoyed conference. I loved it. I liked Saturday a lot more than Sunday, but it was all good. It was all very simple, and every one talked about the love of God or who God is. Elder Bednar was one of my favorite talks too. Every FHE is a paint stroke. I also loved Elder Holland. "No evil man would write the Book of Mormon, and no good man would say he received it from God if he didnt."
President Dewsnup flew in last night to do some interviews. It isnt very often that he comes here, so he has a lot of interviews to do. But this morning he met with Flor and Rosy to meet them. And he didnt exactly tell us, but he said that Rosy seems ready, but Flor might take some time. They have to take care of some things first. So im pretty sure that Rossy will be baptized the 18. Later today president is coming over to our apartment to do an inspection and talk with us. We have taking a couple of dinner breaks to clean the apartment this week. It looks pretty good, but I hope it is good enough for them. he was a General in the army you know. But yes it is an apartment. It is really just a big house, but it has four different apartments. They dont make apartment buildings like how we are used too. But it is very nice. We have a nice open area in the front with the kitchen and a couch. Then in the back is our room and bathroom. You will see when I send you my memory card with the old apartment tour. We live about 15 mintues of walking from the Harbor, thats where all the cruise ships come in, but I dont know how far from an actual beach.
No I wasnt able to tell Jason woody because I dont have his information. But if you ever see him, let him know. Maybe I can write Mckenna to tell him. I haven't written anybody for a while.
You dont have to send the general conference talks, because we get the Ensign every month. Entonce no se precupe. And we can order the bible from the mission office, but I dont know if I want one right now. I got my set all marked up already.
Wow Granpas birthday huh? Make sure to give them a special birthday shout out from me. I cant send them a letter for another month. Oh yea, and I left all my letters in a box in puerto rico because I didnt have weight in my bags, and I thought I had their address in my book, but I dont, so what is it? Also could you tell me when everyones birthdays are? I have a horrible memory. Even everyone in our family. Thanks.
Elder Harvey is from Logan Utah. he is great, we really get along. We have been in the mission for the exact amount of time. He is from my group.
Missionaries usually stay in Antigua for 6 months, but it just depends where they need us. I would be willing to stay for that long, I love it.
Ok, the craziest thing I saw this week, give me a minute. Well we were walking down this road behins this guy, then he looked behind, saw us, then spotted up on the wall and just started peeing. People are crazy here. They just walk around in their underwear in the middle of the street, men and woman. I dont understand it, but its just a different culture. The funniest thing, hmm, I should really write these things down as they happen, I will start doing that. But one funny thing that happened this week was we were walking down a pretty busy road, and this car just stopped and rolled down his window, causing traffic to stop. and said, "hey you jehovas witnesses?" We said "no, but we are from the church of Jesus Christ of latter day saints, Have you ever haerd of that church?" Then he said, "Never heard of it in my life!" and drove off angry. It was pretty random, and we just started laughing. Oh yea, yesterday we were walking in the road, and three old men where behind us walking, then one of them said, "hey der be two of dem and tree of us, we should rob dem boy!" Then another one said, "Tall boy, we dont rob people!" Haha, here we are in the street, broad daylight, and these old men are considering robbing us, and just talking about it with no secretness. I guess they thought we dont understand Dialect or something. But it was extremely funny. It is also pretty funny to see dem goofy tourists coming into town. Right now most of them are from England, so they are just extremely sunburned. And if they aint, if they just flew in, then they are so white they almost glow. It is always weird for us to see white people.
Well anyways, I will write down some stuff during the week to share with you. I hope you are doing great. Mom, have an awesome trip. I want you all to know that I love you very much, and I am very thankful for our family. You guys tried so hard to teach me what was right when I was younger, stroke by stroke until now look at me, I am a beautiful work of art! haha. But really, I love you and am grateful.

Love your son, Elder Hardy

September 28, 2009

Good afternoon. How are we doing this afternoon? Life is great, the mission in great. No where else I would rather be. And mom, if you are going to send something, I wont get it until November 9 when zone conference is. President brings all our stuff from the office. So if you send it now it will be waiting in the office for a month. So just send it November 1, that will still be plenty of time. Also if you want to start hunting around for some ugly polyester ties for Christmas, feel free to start looking. Uglier the better. Other than that I am pretty good. Dont worry about sending too much to me. Oh and I found a reasonable price on a memory card too. So I will just ship mine out in November to yall.
Well Odetta didnt come to church. We called here in the morning, and she said she was coming and never showed up. So we have to drop our date with her, and try to get her some desire before we start talking about baptism again. But we are teaching some really cool Dominican ladies. Dont know if I mentioned them the last week, but their names are Flor and Rosy, they are mother and daughter. But Rosy, the daughter, had been going to church for a while in the dominican republic before she came here a month ago. But they came to church, and have dates for the 18 of october. I am really excited for them. It was weird to translate in sacrament, I've never done that before. And then we taught their gospel priciples class out on the balcony. and then they went to relief society, Flor can understand a lot of English, but rosy speaks nothing.
Lately we have been teaching a lot of Dominicans. yesterday we pretty much spoke spanish the whole day. I feel like I was supposed to learn Spanish so that I could come here and teach all the dominicans and start up a spanish branch. God knows what he is doing.
That is really cool that Briley is walking. Are they showing her my picture and teaching her to say my name, so she will know who I am when i get back, and just scream my name all day. "Nate,Nate, Nate... Hi"
I can't believe Nick went and spoke infront of everyone, thats gotta take some guts. When is that kid going to be baptized already? Hasnt he been emailing Chris and Carter. Oh yea, I do believe chris has been out 15 months, because I have been out for over 11. CRAZY!
Ok, yes I did pay my speeding ticker before I left Puerto Rico. It was sweet too, therer was a member working at the DMV, so she jsut pulled me over to a booth, looked at my ticket, and cut the price in half. That was very nice!
So I had a pretty crazy morning today. I had to renew my visa, so we woke up at 4:30, and we walked into town, we got in line at 5:15 and there was already 50 people in line. They dont mess around with that stuff. And the Office didnt even open until 9 o'clock!!! So we had to stand there for 4 hours in the sun until it opened. Then the immigration officers were trying to get everyone organized into lines, and the people werent taking any part of that. I thought there was going to be a riot. Everyone was pushing and shoving and trying to cut in line. So heres me, trapped inbetween 300 crazy black people, and they are all just yelling and pushing. All I could do was laugh. And I didnt even end up getting in, but at least I got a ticket with an appointment on it in 2 weeks. Somethings are just a little crazier down here. It was a good lesson of patience. I passed the first time, hopefully I can pass again in 2 weeks.
So last sunday we were eating at a members house, the roberts. They are a newly married couple, and he served a mission like 4 years ago in the west indies. So we are looking through his photo albums, listening to him talk about his mission, then bam! Jason Woody was in one of the pictures! I just started trpping. I had forgotten he had even served down here. So they thought that was funny that I was jsut freaking out. But yea, the world is very small. Jason used to be the AP in the west indies mission, so brother roberts was in a picture with him.
Hey, I dont think there would be a better way to celebrate chistmas than take a cruise. I think its a great idea! Haha, but is is all up to you. As long as we see Puerto Rico and Antigua, it dont matter to me.
Well I love you family, keep reading the scriptures! That is our guidance that God has given to us. We are reading the same words that our ancestors had in ancient Jerusalem and the Americas. Peace, Love, and Guidance.

Love Elder Hardy

September 23, 2009

Afternoon! Life is awesome. Today a member that is almost 20 and about to go on a mission came and picked us up this morning. We cruised over to the North side of the Island and played a little cricket with him. It was really fun. We just praticed batting and Bowling. it was pretty natural for me, he was impressed. But he lives in a really nice house, their family have some SUV's, they even have carpet in their home. I havent seen carpet for 11 months. As I stood there I juut thought how rich they were, and then I started thinking about our house, and how they arent that different. I realized how rich and blessed our family is. It kind of just hit me today. Alot of people here just live in one room shacks, so I am very grateful to God for what we have.
Yea Alex jsut finished, isnt that crazy? He said he is going to try and stop by the house and say hello to yall. Time goes by very fast no?
The talent show was very fun, one girl played the pan (steel drums) and I was very impressed. It is just a big pan with a bunch of bumps, and when you hit them they make different notes. Her's had 16 different notes and no marks to tell the difference. Me and Elder Harvey did pretty well. The young women did a full out Rap music video, so it was really bad, a lot of people were upset. "Applebottom jeans, boots with the fur."
Right now they are renting a building, we meet upstairs for our church. but they are finishing the other church building. So that should be done in the next month or so, (Island time it might be 5 months)
Well the work is good, we set a baptismal date last week with a lady named Odetta, she seems very interested. She missed church last week because of a family event, but she said she wont miss church for anything this week. We are also teaching some Domincan ladies, mother and daughter, and they are coming to church this week. they are very excited to read and go to church. Learning Spanish pays off no matter where you are at in the world.
Hey you guys have a great week, just always keep the words of john wooden in your hearts, and the scriptures, and you cant go wrong.

Love your son, Elder Hardy

Thursday, September 17, 2009

*Viewing Tip

Double click on the map below posted above September 2 to see where St. Kitts is.

St Kitts

September 16, 2009

Good afternoon,
Haha, it is really funny, because even here you dont knock on doors, you still yell at the house, but here you dont just say good afternoon, you have to yell "Good afternoon inside", Or they think you are yelling at someone in the street. Well life is good. I am still trying to get used to them driving on the left side of the road. It is actually pretty dangerous for me, because I go to cross and I forget which way the cars are coming from. Plus the cars don't stop here, they will just hit you. If you are on a narrow street, they will be cruisin down and give you two warning honks, but they never slow down. You got to jump onto the sidewalk or gutter. Speaking of gutters, they STINK here! It is supposed to be jsut their normal sink and shower water that is running down the street, but they all smell really bad. I wonder what they put down their sinks sometimes.
There is a good variety of religions here. Like you said, a lot of Anglicans, or however you spell it, there is also a lot of Methodist. They are all very nice, and willing to listen, but it is hard to make them act. But we found some really cool people this week. Talked to some old investigators who had baptismal dates, and they said they are ready to talk to us. So the work should start progressing soon.
We had zone conferece in St Kitts last week. St Kitts is beautiful. It is like a mile maybe two miles wide in a lot of parts, and then really long. So it is really skinny and long. I guess they have a lot of monkeys there, but I never saw any. Sometimes they come into the church parking lot on sundays, so the members have to go chase them out. Zone conference was SWEET! We flew in on Friday, and there was a general authority, Elder Coleman, who is taking a tour of our mission, and we had a fireside with him. He is a convert to the church, but he knows so much about the church. It was really cool listening to him. Then we all slept at the Zone leaders house, all 8 of us. Then the next day the senior couples of the Island made everyone this really good breakfast. It was interesting, because Elder Coleman came and sat with us and ate breakfast. He is a really nice man, very funny, he is always cracking jokes. After Zone conference and interviews, we flew back saturday night and i had a little troube getting back into Antigua. It all just depends on who you have at the immigration office, my guy was jsut angry and i'm pretty sure didnt like white people (You run into that here). Long story short I was stuck in the airport, seperated from my comanion for two hours.
Rasta is a religion. They dont have set beliefs, but they all have dredlocks and smoke the Herb. They are all pretty nice, not going to hurt anyone, but they dont seem to have too much interest. Although there are a couple of members who used to be Rasta in the branch. And the branch has about 70 people a week. Which is extremely good for the Carribean. That is a Ward in Puerto Rico.
This week is the branch talent show, so I am playing the guitar (ITS BEEN WAY TOO LONG) and me and Elder Harvey are going to sing I know that my redeemer lives. I am pretty excited.
I still dont understand the people too Clearly. It is just super hard, they speak rediculously fast, and have different ways of saying stuff. Like "I be vexed mon", thats means that I am angry, or "How you mean?" is like are you serious? So i am just trying to understand them, I feel like how i felt when i arrived in Puerto Rico. It is better though because at least the people can undestand me.
Me and Elder Harvey go running every other day, and do curls and sit up and push up on the off days. So with all this working out, not eating fast food, and not having a car I will lose this extra weight i gained in puerto rico. And you better be planning on coming to Antigua as well as puerto rico, and any other island i might serve at. If you want we can plan on coming back like a week after my mission, in November. But that is prime time tourist season, so you might want to not wait too long. November through february there is about 7 new cruise ships here every today.
And yes I do need some supplies, my shirts are wearing out, a lot of them you can see through the collar. And others have stains on them. I also need a couple more G's. I will find out what exactly I need, and tell you next week. I heard that you can send stuff through DHL and it only takes a couple of days. But the Antiguan mail is like 3 to 6 weeks if no one steals it. So find out how much the DHL is, and if that is super expensive, then I can drag it out for about two months until next zone conference. I will just have to wash all my stuff more often.
The Food is SO good here. We eat at this one members house all the time, and other members feed us every once in a while. There are a lot of members from Guyana here. Guyana is actually apart of south america, but they speak english, and it is more commonly associated with the Carribean. But they make the best food. Curry and chicken, Bakes (Very sweet fried bread stuff) Roti (Sweet tortilla stuff), we also eat a lot of fish, which is really good. I get feed more here than puerto Rico. but it is good because it is a lot healthier.
I wasnt able to buy a memory card, and I will look around here to see if they have any (I doubt it), but maybe I will give it to Sister Dewsnup to send at next Zone conference. They take everyone's mail and stuff back to Puerto Rico and send it from there because it is faster and more secure. So you send it with the shirts and stuff and we will be straight.

Well I love you all very much, keep the faith, peace.

Love Elder Hardy

September 9, 2009

Hey! How is it all? My flight got a little delayed because a tropical storm rolled through on Wednesday, so I had to kick it with the moving elders is San Juan for a couple of days, But I finally made it to Antigua Saturday night. The Branch is amazing! There is more priesthood here than in most of the wards in Puerto Rico. There are 6 return missionaries in the branch too, so they are are willing to help out with the work. Yes,there are a lot of black people here. The only other white people I have seen (not too many) Have been tourist. Pretty much they look like the guys off of cool runnings, Ben Wallace (Basketball player), or there are the occassional caramel, but mostly they are just SUPER DARK! They are really funny and nice though. There are a lot of Rastamen, havent noticed too many odd smelling ciggarettes in the street though if you know what i mean. But I hear it is a big problem on the island. Some of their dredlocks are ridiculously long, some drag on the ground when they walk, or they have these huge beenies, all rasta style, and they stick out 4 feet from their head, its like a huge pot for a plant is on top of their head. I have heard to not drink the tap water. It is pretty much a third world country. Most of the people dont have drinking water, so they have these systems set up to catch the rain water from their roofs and store it in a tank. I thought I saw some poor people in Puerto Rico, but it is really sad to see some of the shacks that the people live in. But for the most part they are really nice. I still can not really understand them. It is a whole different language. I cant even describe it. But when I first got here I thought they were speaking Spanish, So I started to speak Spanish in the airport immigration. When they speak to white people they make it more understandable.The Normans are the senior couple here, they have been here for a year, and they still cant understand the Antiguans when they speak to each other.
People laugh when they look at our name tags, Hardy and Harvey, what aw ya brodas man? Everyone thought that was funny in church. But Elder Harvey is cool, we were in the same district in the mtc. And yes I am district leader here, but it is just me, elder harvey, and the Normans, so not a very big district.
The members are sweet! A lot of them use to be Rasta, but they cut their dreds. We went over to one guys house they other day, and he was just jammin out on the guitar, playing a bunch of Bob Marley and a lot of his own songs. They really do say "Man" every other word, it is super funny.
And yes the island itself isnt that pretty, but I have seen some pictures of the beaches, and they are amazing! The Normans are going to take us on a tour soon, so I will get some pictures.
The food is really expensive here, it is a about 12 Us dollars for subway or KFC (the only fast food on the island). Oh, and they dont use us dollars, they use eastern carribean money. They all have queen elizabeth on them, but it is about 2.67 EC to every US dollar.
This is a completely different mission than what I started out on, everything moves a little slower here, but I love it all, I am super excited to help the work progress. Know that I am safe, and I love you.

Love Elder Hardy

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

September 2, 2009

I'm getting shipped out to Antigua. CRAZY HUH! I Dont know too much about Antigua, but it doesnt look ridiculously small. I hear it isnt the most pretty island, but what can you do? Well my companion will be Elder Harvey, that aint going to be confusing, Hardy and Harvey. It will just be me, him, and a senior couples on the Island. I hear the ward is really cool, and down to help the missionary work progress. I am pretty sad to leave, I Really am going to miss Arroyo. I told the Sanchez family last night that I was leaving, but that I would come back tonight and say goodnight, and Patricia and her daughter Edylis, and the grandmother who is a strong member all started crying. It is going to be really hard to say goodbye. I had a hard time sleeping last night, and just felt sick in the morning. But they are my family here, I know this aint the end, we are gonna come back and visit them in a year.
Well don't have too much left to say, just know I am safe and doing well. My flight leaves tomorrow night at 7 for Antigua.

Love Elder Hardy

Sunday, August 30, 2009

August 26, 2009

Si eso es bien chevere que puedes hablar espanol papa. Donde aprendiste? Google? Wow! Que Ready! Well everything is good here. Last week was a little rough on the teaching aspect. We had a lot of appointments fall, and we havent been able to teach a couple of our investigators, but we have some appointments set up this week with them. I went on a trafeoff with our zone leaders on monday. So I went up to cayey. It was pretty good, we even ate at chillis, so you know it was good.
That is cool you got to talk with Emily a bunch. Dont count on me singing. The reason I saw that is that I cant sing in English very well anymore. It feels really wierd to try it. So maybe I will just sing a couple in Spanish. Haha, on our tradeoff I tried praying in English, and it was super funny. My zone leader said that they just pray in English so I tried it for our night time prayers. I had to really think how to do it, and I said a lot of things wrong. It's just that I haven't prayed in English for almost a year. I talk in English every day, so that is still normal, but praying is a whole other thing.
Yes transfers are next week, so I will be emailing on tuesday, dont forget now. I hope I can stay here. are engaged. I heard Ryan hatch is probably going to get engaged soon.
I cant think of any music right now, but if you want to send me some, that would be cool. Oh yea, and what do you want to do about the memory cards? Dime lo que pasa!
Alright here is a little joke. There was a puerto rican in new york, and he tried to buy a coke from the coke machine. He only had 90 cents, and when he put his money in the machine, it said "Dime", so he leaned forward and said, "I'd like a coke please." Haha, dime means "tell me"
Well i love yall very much, we are going golfing today. I am trying to figure out how to pay my ticket, but im getting that done this week, because I could be shipped out. Pero nos vemos.

August 19, 2009

Dear family,
Hows it going? Everything is good, little dissapointed that the Hurricane didnt hit, it changed dirrection and isnt coming here anymore, but what can you do you know? No, it wuold have been bad if it hit, but I just want to see one in my life, thats all im saying. Well That is really good that the family night went really good. Glad to hear everyone enjoyed it, you guys are doing your part in strengthening the Church of Christ. Well Had a car accident a couple of days ago. We turned in behind this big Van into a neighborhood, and then he just started reversing, I was stopped and tried to Honk at him, but he came right into us. So we gotta take it into a body shop next week. Maybe be on foot for a day or two, I dont know how we will survive.
Nothing much new, found a couple of new people, but we are going to see how serious they are. It is always so hard telling how interested someone is in the beggining. I wish i had that super power, to know someones true intent.
Well today we arent doing anything super exciting, playing a little basketball and other things of that nature. Hey i will send you my card when you send me my card, because I have to have something to take pictures on. Actually can you check how much space is left to take videos? I love taking random videos, so if there aint any room left, tell me and I will just keep this card I have, and send you pictures. Sorry for the short email, but I Love you.

August 12, 2009

Dear Family,
That is really cool that you are having the new converts over for FHE. You are really doing your part to strengthen their testimonies, and really strengthening the ward, because they are going to bring some really strong testimonies to the ward. Well here goes my shout out:
Hey this is Elder Hardy from Puerto Rico. That is so awesome that you have taken this life changing decision, to strengthen your faith in Jesus Christ, and to know that he really does live. This is his Church, and he really is the head of the Church. He has a living prophet today because he loves us, and he really wants to guide and bless us in this world. I can only imagine the blessings you are receiving from putting your faith in Christ and his restored Church. I have seen the blessings in many peoples lifes, it is amazing to see how much the lord really does care for his sheep. Don't ever forget the first time you knew that this church was true. Dont ever forget when God spoke to your heart telling you that these things are true. When hard times come, and we have trials, we just need to remember that very first time we received an answer about this church. When we remember that experience, there is no trial that is too hard, there is nothing that can stop our faith, because we can not deny that God really did answer our prayers, and that this really is his Church. I know with all of my heart that God lives, He literally is our father, and that he loves us. Keep growing your faith, and putting your trust in the Lord. God is Happy with your decisions to join the Church. Elder Hardy
Well I hope that shout out is ok. This week was pretty crazy. There is a member that I am pretty good buddies with, his name is Alexis. he is 23 and always comes teaching with us, and comes and hangs out with us on P days; right now he is preparing to go on a mission, but because of medical stuff it has been hard. the other day he called us, and just, "Come to house." So we got over there and he stumbled out and just signaled with his hands to give him a blessing. He could barely tell us his full name, and was really struggling to breathe. After the blessing he had tears in his eyes, and gave us hugs. After a minute he wasn't struggling as much to breathe, and he could kind of talk. He said that he had a lot of pain in his lungs. so we took him over to the Hospital to get him checked out. I was really scared when we got over there, and he couldnt even talk. But it was amazing to see the power of a priesthood blessing. Not a minute after and he was able to talk, and tell us what was wrong so that we could take him to the hospital. It was a big testimony to me, that the priesthood really is here on the earth, and that God really does Love us, and wants to bless us.
I'm pretty worried about another member though. We have become pretty good friends with him, his name is Edwin, but its not the Edwin that we baptized. this Edwin has been Inactive for a while, but has recently been coming back. We are also probably going to baptized his daughters boyfriend, he has a lot of interest, and came to church last week. But we went over to give Edwin a blessing last week before he went into the doctors, because he has been having some problems. He came over to our house the other day, and said that they arent sure what it is, maybe a tumor or cancer. he said that he's not sure if he is going to live, he doednt know if his heart can take it because he has had problems in the past. It was a big awakening to me, of who I really am. He didnt even tell his wife because he didnt want to worry her until they know for sure. And he chose us to come talk to, to get comfort. I still feel like I am just that teenager I was when I left. But out here I am a representative of the Lord. It was just an eye opener to me, I am expected to know all the answers, and to be prepared at all times to serve and help Gods children.
Our week was pretty good. We found some pretty cool people. a cute little family, the father is really interested. So I am pretty excited about them. We also got that members boyfriend, Alvin.
Haha, I dont know why Briley would say dada if she wanted to play. Haha, actually that comes as no surpise, i am sure Nate is an awesome father.
hey also, can you send me when everyones birthdays are, because I have a horrible memory. I would ahve liked to send daniel a card, but i will send it this week. Well i love you all very much.

Love Elder Hardy

August 8, 2009

Hey Hey Hey,
How is my family doing? Well not too much new this week. This morning we left at 5 o'clock to go hike a mountain and watch the sun rise, cook some breakfeast burritos, and do our studies. it was way beautiful. Because we could see all of Arroyo and the ocean, and the sun coming up. Up at the top of the mountain there is this cool abandoned house, so we did our studies in that. Next week I am pretty sure we are going fishing, im not sure in a lake or in the ocean.
Right now we are just trying to get a lot of investigators. We have got a couple who seem legit, pero vamos a ver. Elder Ralston is a very good fun Elder, he has just got to learn what i learned after my first transfer, RELAX. He gets frustrated over the spanish and stuff, but you just got to learn that it will come. I ahve learned to mellow out a little. There are the ABC missionaries. Anal, Buck (disobedient), and Chill.
Ok so one night me and Elder Polanco were working in some really tall apartments, they were 20 floors high. We were just visiting investigators/members, and tracting, we were using the elevator a lot that night. we had planned to be there all night, but around 8:30 we decided to go visit someone somewhere else. The next day we came back in the afternoon for an appointment. In the middle of my opening prayer, we heard a thud outside, and the lady jsut screamed and ran out the door. So I just stoped and we were looking at eachother like what in the world. When the lady came back she said, "I thought the elevator dropped again." We were just like again? Then she told us how the night before it free fell from the 12 floor to the 2, and that her family was in it. She said that her uncle or grandpa had a heart attack and had to go to the hospital. Can you imagine being in the situation, free falling for 10 floors? Wow, so it is just a testimony to me that God really does care. For some reason we decided to leave those apartments. We just need to listen to the spirit and rely on God.
Well goodbye family, I love you much, keep looking for ways to open the doors to share the gospel. Right now we are trying to get the members to do service for their neighboors, and jsut make new friends, so that they can open the doors to hear the message. So this week go talk to one of our neighboors, pray and look for ways to serve them, so that they can have a chance to receive the blessing that we already have.

Love Elder Hardy

July 29, 2009

Hey sorry for not emailing last week. We went golfing in the morning, and got trapped in some crazy storm, the puerto ricans called it a honda (not sure on the spelling) But we were on hole 8 and i thought a hurricane hit. There were so many branches and leaves flying around. So we had to go kick it in the club house. It ended up taking a little longer than expected, plus we had to go pick up our greenies from the office, which is a hour and a half away. So that is why I couldt write last week. I am very sorry, I hope I didnt cause any stress. But yes I am safe and healthy, so dont worry.
Well Elder Large is in Las Piedras, I am going to miss him. We were pretty good buddies. After the mission I am sure we will hangout. But now I am a happy Father. Whenever you train you are a father, and the greenie is your son. So my father in the mission is Elder Contreras. But my sons name is Elder Ralston. He is so funny. I love him! He is really excited to be out here, and to be a missionary. I am really excited because I just cant deal with Elders who complain or dont want to be here. I jsut dont understand why they are here. But Elder Ralston is Awesome! he is from Virginia, he is 6 ft 4 in, so i look like a dwarf. he is really skinny. I weigh 185, and I weigh more than him. He is always doing something energetic. I LOVE HIM! I really do feel like a father, because greenies really dont know anything. I feel like I have to protect him, and just teach him everything about the mission. I am really happy to be training.
Oh so Elder Losee and Elder walker both stayed here too, they are both from my group, so that is cool. And they are both training too. Today we are going to play a little basketball, Greenies vs. Trainers. We are going to get slaughtered, because my son is 6 ft 4, and the greenie in Guayama is 6ft 6in, had a scholarship to duke as a jr, but then got in a car accident. He had a vertical of 41 inches! Can you believe that. He could put his elbow in the rim. So it is going to be a little rough, but i got faith. As Coach shaw would say, "its not the size of the dog in the fight, but the size of the fight in the dog."
Yes God is looking out for us, I cant remember if I told you story of the Elevator in Guaynabo, but I will tell you next week, its a descent story.
Of course I remember sister leonard, I forgot her name, but I just thought of her yesterday, because someone said something about "The Indian in the cuboard", and I loved that movie. And sister leonard took me to go see it. She was the nicest lady in the world!
Yes we have had family nights with the Sanchez-Comacho family. They are the cutest family ever. Their daughters say the cutest stuff. Like the 8 year old, Edelys, last family night at the end of the lesson, busted out her Bible for little kids, and was jsut like i have a story, and told us about how Jesus was baptized by his cousin John the Baptist, just like how her family was baptized. And then the 7 year old, Ninoshka, she is always trying to play games with me. At church she alsways taps my shoulder and runs away. And she always gives me these dirty looks. IT CRACKS ME UP! this little 7 year old is slways giving me the stink eye. She has so much attitude. I took a picture, so you can see her stink eye.

Dad i will answer your question about callings next week, i dont have too much time, because i read your letters from last week too. But as far as new investigators, we have a couple of good prospects. No one too serious. We are starting to teach some guy who I thought was a member. His wife and kids are members, but he hasnt been baptized because he cant stop drinking. So we are going to really start working with him. He goes to church every sunday, so we are going to really start teaching him, and let him drop the booze through the power of the spirit, or as I like to say, spiritually pistol whip him.
Well thank you for everything. keep being awesome!

Love your son Elder Hardy

Sunday, July 26, 2009

July 15, 2009

Dear Family,
I loved your conversion story mom, and dad I really liked hearing a little about your mission. I was kind of hoping to be able to be humbled by being in a poor country, but that hasn't happened yet. Maybe when I get shipped out to the Islands. Which everyone thinks will happen this transfer. But I really don't want to right now. Later on, I Love this area too much.
EDWIN, PATRICIA, AND ALEXANDER GOT BAPTIZED!!! I have never been so happy. I am thankful to be in a mission where we don't have ridiculous amounts of baptisms, because we really do appreciate the ones that we have. They are the coolest family ever! Before the baptism we had a dinner at the church. There was a lot of people at the church. And Patricia surprised me with a big birthday cake. I really was surprised. Then we had the program. Their two daughters sang "I am a child of God." It was really cool, because now this family will grow in the faith and Edwin and Patricia really can lead and guide those little girls, and become an eternal family. The baptisms went really well, everyone was all nervous with excitement. Patricia told us the next day that when she left the water she really had been born again, because she was just floating on air, doing ditsy stuff all night. All the members said that was the best baptism they have ever been to. Luckily I looked over the confirmation ordinance on the way to church, because when I got there, Patricia asked me to confirm her.
On Monday night was awesome too. We had a family night over at their house. We shared some story from the Liahona about making visitors feel welcome at church, and the kids really loved it, plus it was mostly Edwin and Patricia teaching most of it. That really made me happy to see them all laughing together, learning about the Gospel, and preparing to enter into to the Temple. We also played the "Peep" game after and they loved that.
Thank you so much for the Birthday package. I love the Mindy Gledhill CD! That is my favorite CD ever. The other Girl was also really good, and it is cool that a couple of songs are in Spanish, I really like that. Those shirts are also really nice, how did you know i needed some shirts? They make me look really classy, and that is what it is all about right? All the cards made me laugh, because they were just decked with glitter, one i couldnt even read because it was all glitter.
I cant believe grammy moved out. She is so independent. You got to get me her address. That is really cool what Bishop said, I really do believe it too.
WOW Chacho! En verdad, 114!? Me imagino que puede cocinar un huevo en la calle. Y cuando empezaron tener Zichini? Eso es chevere.
Golfing was super fun! Yes, I lived up to the family name, but luckily everyone sucked too. Well I should be heading out, going to eat some more Lechon today in Guavate, tu sabe!

Love Elder Hardy

July 8, 2009

Life is nice and tranquilo over here. Nothing too new and exciting this past week. But you guys had a big week huh? Yea i miss going to Durango, those were some really good memories. Thanks for remembering me on your trips, and slways sending me postcards, I really do have a family that loves me.
Yes, I really do believe that the sand comes from the Sahara, because I was here and I saw it. I have heard that from a bunch of different people. So dad, don't be like Thomas and just believe without seeing.
Haha, no we are not going to suck the Ward budget dry. For our activities, the church really doesn't have money, so we give everyone assignments. I really like being in Puerto Rico, because the church is a little weaker, and it is cool to really be involved in the church, and helping everything run. If I was in the states, I wouldnt be focused on trying to find a new branch president, or finding new Elders quorum teachers. Bishop actually asks our opinion on a lot of stuff.
I might have to wait till next week to get the watch, vamos a ver, because WE ARE GOING GOLFING TODAY! Haha, over in Salinas, there is a course that is $22 for 9 holes, glubs, and a cart. So we are gonna go kill it on the course today. I am pretty excited. It has been a while since I have played golf on a real course, Desert Golf doesn't count.
It has started to heat up around here. It only rained a couple times in the past two weeks, and it was HOT. There hadn't been clouds for a while, and it was like 95 I heard. But now the storms are coming. I think it going to start raining a lot, so it should cool down a little bit every once in a while.
We have been having success with the inactive members. A family has come two weeks in a row. And this girl, has come the past three weeks, except she only had come for sacrament, but we talk to her last week, and she said that she was reading the scriptures, and wants to serve a mission. How sweet is that!
Edwin, Patricia, and Alexander are still doing really good. They got their baptismal cloths all picked out and cleaned. We gave them a couple ties as gifts, and they are just really excited. Patricia is really excited about being able to get married in the temple.
Hey quick favors, mom could you write me your conversion story, maybe any problems that you faced as you were preparing for baptism? And Dad could you try to write me some letters about your mission. I dont really remember much about your mission. If you could try to send me a letter every once in a while, with a story from your mission, or something you learned on your mission that would be great.
Hey well I love you much, you guys are the best, God knew what he was doing when he put me with you. Read your scriptures every day, and pray for missionary oportunities, and for the strength and knowledge to talk when God gives you the oportunity.

Love you all so much, Love Elder Hardy

p.s.- Here is a family night from me: Talk about the army of God. You can read a little bit about it in Ephesians 6: 10-18 i believe. Talk about how there is a war going on right now, but not physically, but spiritually, and we need to prepare ourselves before we go out to war. Also about some of the other things we can do to protect us. Then read in Alma 43:19 through 21, about how the people of God, prepared themselves with the armor of god against the wicked people. and how the wicked feared the People of God because of their Armor. Also how it was moroni who prepared them, their leader, and how it is the responsability of the parents to prepare their kids. Then read 3 Nephi 4:7-8, talk about how Satan has been fighting this war for a long time, and has learned, now he has his own armor, and other ways to tempt us in these days. But we need to do as the people did and have faith in God, that he can protect us. I dont have my scriptures here with me, so check the verses and everyything, i could be wrong. Alright but thank you, bye.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

July 1, 2009

Wow California sounded fun. That will also be really cool to go on a nice little road trip to Colorado. Everything is really good here, the mission is the best! You can send that package to my house, we have a car and the post office is super close, so send it on over. Oh yea I really liked the Iguanas, it was pretty entertaining, and an "Education Experience" according to the package. I am going to give one to the daughters of Edwin and Alexander, and the other one to a less active we have been working with, she has a bunch of kids. The glasses are really nice, we drive around alot, so I am loving them, thank you. To answer about the 4th of July, yes they do celebrate the 4th of July, except they dont really have big fireworks. I hear they have a big show in San Juan. Pretty much Puerto Ricans will celebrate any holiday, because they just like excuses to get together and drink. They have these big calenders with all these wierd holidays on it.
We were planning a 4th of July ward party, it was going to be sick! We planned Carnival games, hot dogs, of course a big cooked pig, getting some of the members to bring their bands and play in the night time, then having President Dewsnup come down and speak, and then end it with a firework show. I dont think a ward party could get any better than that, and that's what you get when you have 6 Elders in a room for an hour, THE BEST PARTY EVER! Well Bishop decided we need more time to set things up, and that the bands would be too much. But we are doing it July 17 and still calling it a July 4th party.
Alexander is still excited to be baptized. He said that he wants to do it the day before because he wants his friends that he made from the stake activity to come. And Patricia is for sure for the 11th too. We passed by one day, because we contact our investigators with a baptismal date every day, and she was just like hey, im getting baptized with Alexander for the 11th. So we were all excited. I dont know if I told you before, but Edwin said that he wanted to wait until June of 2010 to be baptized, so he can be baptized with their youngest daughter. But last night when we passed by, again another daily contact, he was just chillin on the porch, and when we came up he said hey, I'm getting baptized with my family! Haha, I have never been so happy. Edwin is a really cool guy, he has said from day one that I have talked to him, that he wants to get baptized, but he just kept delaying it. He had work before, but now in August his schedule works out. They are a really cool family, and they will be great in the ward. They have been taking the discussions for about 11 or 13 years. Everyone has their moment, and you never know when someone could have a change of heart, and realize what they need in their lives. Alexander said that he wants me to baptized him, Patricia wants Elder Large, and Edwin wants a member from the ward to do it. So everything is really good with them.
One thing that was pretty cool this week, was that a bunch of sand from the Sahara Desert came. One day we couldnt even see the mountains that are 5 miles away. The sand carries in the wind and storms and stuff, all the way over to Puerto Rico. CAN YOU BELIVE THAT!? FROM AFRICA!!! I think it is crazy. I didnt notice it around me, but when you look at stuff from far away you can really see how much there is. At first i thought it was raining in the mountains, and that why I couldnt see them, but nope, it was sand from the Sahara.
I went on a really fun trade off with an elder in our district this week too, Elder Drollette. He is going to die (end his mission) at the end of the transfer, 4 weeks. So I learned a lot from him. He is a really good teacher, and a really cool guy, we talked for a long time in the night time, lets just say we didnt go to bed at 10:30. But Elder Drollette has been sick, and we finally figuerd out it was from all the sand in the air.
Last week we went to a little shack with palm trees on it that was right next to the ocean. It was beautiful, there was a bunch of palm trees,and we had a strong ocean breeze. The shack also had a spot for BBQ'n so we brought Bratwurst, and smores and stuff, and of course Malta. (You guys should buy some Malta from the store, I drank it in the states one time, but get malta India if you can, Polar is ok, but I like India, the first couple of bottles you will hate, but just keep drinkin it and you will start to like it) It was a really fun time. I was going to send some pics, but i forgot my camera in the car; next week. And then after we went over to this basketball court and played soccer, it was super fun. Just so you know, most of the basketball courst are shaded, they have these huge tin roofs, so it is nice and shady cool. (FYI-Malta is a non-alholic soft drink that is frequently drank in the Caribbean.)
But that is what we are doing this week too. Gonna BBQ and play soccer. Next Pday we are all buying Machetes and hiking up some crazy jungle mountain with some members. Machetes are suprisingly only 7 dollars, and they are big too. It will take a couple hours to get to the top, im pretty excited.
Well family I will let you go, you are in my prayers, and in my thoughts. "We have an important work to do, and we can not come down."

Love Elder Hardy

June 24, 2009

How is it all going? Happy fathers day! A little late, but you know I mean it. What did you get this year? A Tie? Really? Wow, that is really cool, oh whats that? Some socks too! Haha, just kidding, but really. In Puerto Rico they call Fathers day "El dia de los perros." (The day of the Dogs) I dont know if it is supposed to be negative or what. But Bishop got up and was like, "Hey its the of the dogs!" And everyone laughed, and then he explained that he calls it the day of the dogs because the Fathers are the watch dogs of the house, always looking out for the family. So I thought that was a lot better than just calling all fathers dogs.
That is a bummer that there are no sports on right now. And dont you even think about going to a Mercury game dad, I will never let that go that you went to a mercury game, because I know that you arent kidding, and are jsut desperate for sports.
Felix is just too stressed out and depressed, we tried working with him, but he is just not ready right now, we will pass by in a month or two.
But, awesome news! You know that husband and wife we were working with, Edwin and Patricia (Edwins got dredlocks), Their 15 year old son, Alexander, was never interested in listening because his uncle is a pastor and he went to church with him. Anyways, his grandma is a really faithful member, and she invited him to go to some stake young mens activity. Im guessing it is like our high adventure stuff because it was 4 days of camping, but they also did a lot of spiritual stuff. Anyways, Alexander came home after and the first thing he told his mom was that he wants to get baptized in the true church of God. Haha, that is AWESOME! So once we heard that, we went over and talked to him and set a date for the 12 of july. I dont think there can be better birthday gift than that. He was also asking a lot of questions about the mission, and says that he really wants to serve too. STUD!
Then on Monday we had a family night, and his grandma came over, and the whole family was present and listening; Usually that family never all sits together. And we had a really good lesson, the spirit was super strong. At the end Patricia told us that she kept waiting to be baptized because she was waiting for her calling from God. She told us that she kept praying that her son would accept this Church and be baptized. She was all emotional, and said that now she can get baptized. And then the grandma turned over to her son, Edwin, and asked when he is going to be baptized, and he said that he is going to be baptized, he just doesnt have his date yet, he is waiting for God to tell him when. He is a stubburn man, we have taught him so many times that God doesnt want you to wait, get baptized now. He knows the Book of Mormon is true, he knows this is the true church, but he jsut doesnt want to set a date. In August he doesnt have work on Sundays, so his baptism will be in August. So then the grandma says, well Alexander you should wait until August, so it can be a family baptism. Oh I HATE the word "wait". But luckily so does Alexander, and he said, "Wo, wo, wo, I already have my date!" I love Alexander, he is such a stud!
So that is really the highlight of the week. But you all are the best, I miss and love you much.

Love Elder Hardy

June 17, 2009

How is everything going? Mom you are still in california, and dad, im pretty sure you are still out of town, but it sounds like yall are doing amazing. Haha, that Jake cracks me up, I can just see him picking up the speaking and trying to talk to me. Just over a year and I will be there Jake, dont worry about it buddy. That is really cool that guy got bapttized again and is going to church. Invite him over for dinner, get to know his family, make him feel the love from the ward.
Hey I did get that letter from Alison, but that was when my email was dumb, so i couldt do it, and I totally forgot to write back. Alison I am going to write you a letter tonight.
Well we talked to Alberto yesterday, and he told us that he is going to go to his moms church, I knew she would be a problem. But what can you do you know. But we told him he is always invited, and that we are friends, he said of course and told us to stop by when we are in the area. So we will leave him in the area book for a couple of elders in 6 months.
We had a guy come to church last week, named Felix. He is a nice guy, in his 50's, going through a hard time right now because him and his wife are getting divorced. He came to church, knew alot of members, and loved it, he was talking to everyone. After Church we went over to his house and set a baptismal date for the 28 of June. We have only taught him one time, Saturday night, and he went to church, so he has desire, we just have to make sure he understands everything before the 28.
Last week was pretty cool in Guavate, AKA "The pig capitol of Puerto Rico." Pig is a big thing here, and if a place has the best pig on the island, then you know it is going to be BOMB! And it was. It was so tasty. The place we went to was recently on tv. So you can check it out on you tube. We talked to the owner of the place, and she told us the Bizzare foods came there. That Tv show travels around the world, and the guy eats wierd kinds of foods, like monkey brains, or things of that nature. Well apparently he ate some fruit there, that was pretty disgusting. I didnt try it, I just had the best pig ever. But check it out on you tube, "Bizzare foods- puerto rico." They smoke the pigs in the back, and then put these huge 5 foot pigs on a rotisierre in the front window, and hack off the meat with a machete. I have a picture taking a swing at it, you'll see.
One thing about Puerto Rico is they are a bunch of pretty boys. One member will take a shower before we go play basketball on p days. Anyways, back when I was with Elder Polanco, he asked me to trim his eye brows with a razor, and I thought he was kidding, because they trim their hair line up with a razor, but I thought he was kidding about the eye brows. But the other day when we passed by Alberto he was trimming these little kids eye brows with a RAZOR! Come on now, tweezers are like 3 bucks, throw me a bone. I just dont get it. p.s.- I was freaking out in the Dominican Republic when they cut my hair, and trimmed up my hair line with a razor. He busted out the Razor, and I was just like, "Wo, wo, tranquilo." And everyone laughed.
Hey there is something that I need, I am running out of space in my journal. So if you could send me another journal, that would be awesome.
Well that does it for me, we dont have too many investigators right now. Yesterday we were teaching this innactive lady, and at the end of the lesson she told us that she has been wanting to come back, and also that her boyfriend wants to take the discussions. So that is going to be sweet! I am pretty excited, get him baptized, and them married in the Temple.
I love you all so much, thank you for the support.

Love Elder Hardy

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

June 9, 2009

June 9, 2009

Cuckoo for Coconuts!

Evening Serenade

June 9, 2009

How is my family doing? I am doing really good. Found out yesterday that me and Elder Large are staying together again for this transfer, so I am pretty stoked on that. This transfer has gone by so fast, it is ridiculous. We are also getting one of my good mission buddies into our district, so I am really excited about that. He is one of the members of the Dynasty, so you know he is cool. Our District is going to be way to much fun. This is the last transfer for 2 of the Elders in our district so I'm gonna miss them, they are way cool, Elder Black and Elder Drollett.
Well those Pinchos were KILLER! They are so good! It was a buck 50 for a huge stick of meat, and it tasted super good. Today we are going up to Guabate. It is the tourist spot for Puerto Ricans. There is really good pork, and a bunch of souvenir shops.
Last week at Church we had this younger guy, Alberto show up to Church. He is 28 years old, and is going to College, and he is like 6 foot 6. We just talked to him for about 10 minutes on Saturday night, he understood everything really well, and came to church. He even read that same night that we talked to him, and we talked to him at like 9 o'clock. He seems really interested. The only worry I have is his parents, he was hesitant to set up another appointment because he lives with his parents, and doesn't want them getting mad. I can understand, how would you feel if I started having missionaries from another church come into our house and teach me. So he is really cool, but that is my only worry.
Well I will write you letter with some spiritual experiences, dont ahve a lot of time on the computer. But know that I love you all, keep reading your scriptures, especially with Hailey and Jake. Its like Lehi, it didnt realize that the Plates of Brass were important until he read them. It is the same with me, i really have a desire to read the Scriptures, now that I have really studued and pondered them every day on the mission.

Love Elder Jared Hardy

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

May 27, 2009

Hey Fam,
How does it go? Well I opened my other email, but i couldnt open the emails, so hopefully i will be able to read them next week. Just send your emails to this new account, I dont know whats up with the other one.
That is super funny it rained on Graduation again. Oh the good old days in high school. Speaking of high school, all the girls in the ward sent me a bunch of notes and pictures. I thought it was pretty funny. Tell them all thank you so much, and that they boosted my day. Especially thank sister Grover, I'm sure she was in charge of that, she is the coolest.
Well a little bit about Arroyo, is that alot of the older houses are built on huge stilts. It is pretty cool, because you always have a nice shaded patio underneath your house. Some of them are crazy, we saw one that was built next to a hill/cliff. When you drive up to the house it is ground level in the front, but in the back they cutt out of the hill, so the house was just on 30 foot stilts. I hope you can picture that, it was stecthy to the max. I didnt even want to go inside, luckily they werent home.
There also arent any parrots here. I dont get it, but there are absolutely no parrots on the part of the island. This side is like a different world than the north side. Even the season of the fruits. When I was in Guaynabo it was mango season and it was dying down when I left, but when I came here mango season was jsut starting up. I thought that mangos just grew year round, but a member told me the other day that the north and south are on different schedules.
Well that sweet mountain lake was pretty cool. It was beautiful. Of course we couldnt go in, but we explored around, and jsut acted like we were like boys in scouts again. We had a lot of fun.
Hey, so that memory card you sent me is full, so i am going to buy another one today at walmart. Also, I gotta spend 20 bucks on a Book of Mormon, because mine got soaked because of the rain, and was all gross and ripping. And in Zone Conference they talked about how the appearance of our scriptures reflects how we feel about them.
Last week was a rough week for the work. We didnt teach too many people, and we didnt really find anyone. But we tried to think of what we could do better yesterday, and we figured that we just need to have more faith in the Lord, and let the light of Christ shine through. We have to be stoked about this work, weather it be talking to people who are prepared and want to be baptized, or getting doors slammed in our face. We are missionaries of the Lord, and we just need to recognize who we are. There is no one else that is able to teach someone to be baptized as a convert. Members can go out with missionaries, but we are the only ones called authorized to do this work. We also decided to shorten our lessons, and make them more simple. That really seemed to work yesterday. We taught a bunch of people and set up a bunch of return appointments.
Keep trying to help those missionaries understand the importance of members. Members roles arent to go out and find the people, but to make them feel welcomed into the Church. Think about walking into a place where everyone has different beliefs than you were raised up believing, and where you dont know anyone. That is super scary, I would never enter into a church if I didnt know anyone. The roll of members is to fellowship. To invite them over for dinner, to invite them to sit by you in Church, and make them feel loved. Also in teaching to relate how the gospel has blessed your life. With out members this work is super hard. Also when was the last time you guys gave a reference to the missionaries? A bunch of your neighbors arent members, become friends with one family on the street, invite them over for dinner, and gradually introduce them to the gospel. Once people see we arent a bunch of locos, they become interested in our church, they realize that we really arent that different, but that we believe that God has called a prophet for us in these days, and has given us more of his guidance.
Well I love you all so much. Realize how important missionary work is, and that it is not only for missionaries. I really do have a testimony in Christ, I know that there is life after this, this is just a test, and we will live with the consequences for the rest of Eternity. Go into the world and let the light of Christ shine. Never be afraid to tell someone when they are wrong on moral standards, tell them how it is and be bold 2 nephi 7.

Love Elder Jared Hardy

Friday, May 22, 2009

May 20, 2009

Well, I decided to just make another email, because that last one was ridiculous. So just email me on this account fron now on.

So everything has been good here in Arroyo and Patillas. Elder Large is from Huntington Beach, he surfed and boogy boarded before the mission. And he snowboarded, so we got stuff in coming. We are best buddies. I am blessed to have him as a comp. He served in Virgin Gorda for 6 months, so his Spanish is a lttle shaky.

Last night I found out that there is surf in Arroyo. We were talking to the bishop and his son, because his son left for the CCM in the DR today, and I asked him if he surfed, and he said kinda, so I asked him where, and he said everyone around here goes to Arroyo. So that is very interesting.! Ha! Ha! just kidding, but maybe in two years. Bishop also goes spear fishing all the time, so he was showing us all of these pictures of him holding these huge baracudas and other big fish. He said there they don't have a problem in Puerto Rico with shark attacks or any other fish.

Edwin is looking for a job right now. He is reading and praying a lot, and so is his wife. We are trying to focus on her right now, because she doesn't have to work on Sundays so we can dunk her right now if she was ready.

Right now we are really trying to find and focus on people who are prepared and are going to change. We are tired of teaching someone three times a week and they don't go to church. So now we are trying to weed people out by setting conditional baptisms with them. "If you know that there is a living prophet and that this is the true church would you be baptized?" That is within the first three minutes that we meet them so it is easy to weed the people out who are never going to do anything. We explain to them that God will answer their prayers and that they can know of these things for themselves.

We also go contacting at the University because students are open and willing to learn. We have a couple invetigators from that, so hopefully it works out good.

Today we are going up to some mountain lake for Pday, to check it out and goof around. We are going to try and find a member with some fishing poles, or if not we can buy some 15 dollar ones from Walmart. I haven't seen it yet but it looks beautiful from the pictures.

Well, the work is going good. I am loving it here in Arroyo. The weather is still nice. Sometimes in the afternoon the sun gets pretty strong, but it is nothing compared to Arizona. My Spanish is pretty good now. I would call it close to fluent. Well, you are all the best. Know that you are in my prayers every night, and that I love you.

Love, Elder Hardy

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

May 6. 2009

Technology is the worst, I just typed my email, and then the computer kicked me off, but at least we will have a lot to talk about on sunday. Well sorry, but i love you, I cant wait to talk to you on Sunday. I will call around 6 our time. I think that is 2 or 3 your time, look it up. Ok but you all are the best, everything is awesome here in Arroyo, keep on being strong members!

Love Elder Hardy

Friday, April 24, 2009

April 22, 2009

Como Estan?
Que hay! How is everything? I hope your knee is ok mom, you will be in my prayers. Well I thought transfers was this week, but it is next week, sorry. So write me before next tuesday. But yea, I would be surprised if I dont get tranfered.
It sounds like your lives are all great. wow you all are lucky to have listened to Brook White again.
That is funny that Mr. Davis is going to be a principal, he is the coolest! I hope those kids are ready.
Yea that would be pretty funny to see the faces of Brother Grovers class if I spoke Puerto Rican Spanish to them. It is definitely something different.
To work with the members we do what are called lightning visits. We go to their house, offer ourselves for service, and leave with a prayer. It is a good way to get less actives more active, because they feel the spirit while we are there, and they feel it leave. So it helps them to go to church and feel that spirit.
Wow, I dont think a ward is allowed to have two Hardy families. They wont know what to do. That is cool you guys get to go to the campout togoether.
Well last week we went to El Morro again, that is the army fort in pirates of the Carribean. It was SWEET! Because this time we forked out 3 bucks and went inside the castle. It was super fun, we had a bunch or missionaries. You will see some of our adventure in a week when I send my card.
One cool thing that I found out is that Oscar De la Joya lives in our area. Yea Guaynabo is rich. Also I found out that Tim Duncan is from one of the Islands in our mission, St Croix (I think thats how you spell it)
We went to the Pueblo in Rio Piedras, and I finally bought some shoes. My other ones were getting pretty bad. Everytime it rains, the whole in the bottom of my shoe just sucks the water right up. I cant believe I wore a hole in the shoes in just 4 months. Do you think we walk alot? but the new shoes are decent. Every store we went to had the same shoes, and they are all not very good. All of them are made out of fake crocodile or snake skin, and the toes are stretched out a good 2 to 4 inches than a normal shoe. but I managed to find some semi normal shoes. We will see how long they last me, the were only 25 dollars.
One funny thing about Puerto Rico is that they dont have very big yards, so there is a lot of crazy things on their roofs. For example one of our investigators has a pool ontop of her roof. And we arent talking about those little blow up baby pools. It is a BIG POOL. you will see, I took a picture. Also the other day I saw a swing set on top of someone's house! HAHA! That is just not safe, I dont know what they were thinkning.
Well good news on Rosa, she is getting baptized this SUNDAY!!! It was a really cool story. She was a jehovahs witness before, so she was struggling with the fact that we dont talk or pray to jehovah. We showed her a bunch of scriptures that Christ was the God of the Old testament, but she could just not change. She prayed, and just still couldt not believe it. Then we went over again, showed her more scriptures, still nothing, and as we were looking for more scriptures at her house, she just opened the Book of Mormon and started reading aloud. Well I dont think it was by chance that she started Reading Mormon Chapter 9, it is one of my favorite chapters, and it is super powerful. Well about half way through she just started bawling, and said a prayer out loud, thanking God for her answer. Then she told us that she has never felt the spirit so strong, and that she knows the Book of Mormon is true, and that Christ was Jehovah.
Then I told her that if she wanted to feel this spirit with her all the time, every second of every day, she needs to be baptized with the authority of God. She immediately said, "When can I be baptized." So the baptism will be Sunday. She is really excited, and she has a strong testimony.
It just shows you the power of the Book of Mormon and Holy Ghost. We didnt do anything, it was the Holy Ghost.
Well I love you all very much, keep being good examples to all those around you, and keep striving to be more Christ like.

Love Elder Hardy

April 15, 2009

Hey! Hey!
Thank you so much for the package, all the candy was great, and I love the Mindy Gledhill Cd. Elder Polanco was pretty excited about that chocolate bunny you sent him.
Easter is definitely different here. They celebrate the entire week. They call it the Holy week. All the kids dont have school, and nobody works on Friday (The death of Christ). It is pretty crazy, EVERYONE goes to church on Friday and Sunday (resurrection Sunday). We also ate alot of habituales con duelces. It is very different. It is a tradition mostly in the Dominican Republic, But they soak beans in water for like 24 hours, then they put it in a blender with sugar, milk, and other stuff. It was pretty good, nobody thought I would like it, they kept saying "You can try a little bit to see if you like it." I only got one thing to say, If you think beans will give you gas and diahrea, try eating liquid beans.
Super P day was really fun. We got there early and set up, so we started playing around 10 and didnt stop until 4. It was a really nice gated neighborhood that president rented. It was really cool, it was surrounded by mountain jungles. I mostly played Tennis and Basketball, but also played a little Rubgy and Volleyball. It was funny seeing Sister Dewsnup play basketball and volleyball, and President be quarterback in football. haha, I got super sunburnt. you will see the pictures, my tanline is super funny.
President Dewsnup is amazing! He was a general and a lawyer. He knows everything about the sciptures. That man knows so much it it amazing. I love listening to him speak. He also really loves his wife, every single zone conference he tells us how lucky he is to have Sister Dewsnup.
The name of my bishop is Bishop Walker. That is awesome that Jordan is going to Brazil. We just had this guy move in with his family from Brazil. I can not understand their language to save my life, but luckily they speak English too. It was super funny when he bore his testimony and everyone was giggling and trying to understand him.
Somtheing funny is that whenever we walk passed kids they yell Obama at Elder Polanco. I dont know why, he doesnt look anything like Obama, but they do. And he just gives them a little "Yea, what up".
In Puerto Rico people dont point at people with their fingers, they point at them with their lips. It is pretty funny, and very interesting the first time you see it, it is like they are trying to kiss you.
Oh! Speaking of, everyone greats everyone with a kiss on the cheek here, and we really have to watch out, because the people always try to kiss us. I like to use the stiff arm block and jump top the side. Elder Polance got kissed by this lady one time, it was pretty funny. Its not bad, it is just their culture, so no worries.
well yesterday we finally played a little "Prosball". Both of our appointments fell through and it was like 8 O'clock, so we went and played some guys in basketball, and since we beat them, we have a return appointment to go teach them.
Today we are going to Old San Juan Again. Were going to Morro again (Old Army Fort). But everyone is going, because I guess Johnny Depp is there filming another movie, so we are going to find him and teach him. We'll see how it goes.
The heat is starting to come. I dont want to imagine how summer is. Yeah my face was breaking out, but is is calming down, the humidity is pretty bad. But if I need to I will get some medicine.
Well we are planning the baptism for Alvaro next week, so that is good. It is a long story with Rosa, but she is still coming to church, and wants to be baptized.
Alright I love you all, read your scriptures, and rely on the lord.

Love Elder Hardy

April 8, 2009

Buenos Dias! Como esta mi familia? Todo bien aqui. No hay problemas. This week was really good. I had a little mini trade-off with one of my good buddies from the CCM, Elder Donovan, because our companions are district leaders, and they had a meeting. But it was super fun. We were good buddies in the CCM, and we are in the same zone, so I see him a lot. But we took the train to Santurce, his area and tracted for a couple of hours, and met and taught this really lost guy and set a date with him. But Santurce is super cool. It is a huge city. There is a million people in Santurce. It is super close to old San Juan. I drove through it the other day and took a video. It is just a bunch of high rises.

Puerto Rico facts: 90% of men under the age of 27 drive a motorized scooter. Ha! ha! There are so many of those dang scooters, and all of them have super bad exhaust on them so they are all super annoying.

Someone told me the other day that there is volcanic ash rain here 4 to 5 times a year. The ash is from a nearby volcano and gets carried over here, and comes down in the rain. They said its uperhard to get off of your car. So I'm guessing my shirt isn't going to be very white when I get home--more like an ash grey.

Well, the baptism didn't go through because Alvaro had work. But he is going to find out his schedule at his new job, and he is going to set a day when he can do it. Last night he was talking to his wife and trying to convert her. It was super cool. But he is still excited to be baptized so that is good.

We saw Rosa again and she was still super sick. She might be in the hospital. Usually she has her door open because she sells candy and soda, but we have passed by a couple days, and her door is closed, and we knock, and she hasn't answered.

We finally started teaching someone who is young. His name is Raul. He is like 24, and goes to the university. He is pretty cool. His girl friend is a member, and he has gone to institute a lot. So he knows a lot of the Book of Mormon. We hve taught him twice, and he is pretty interested. We didn't commit him to baptism because he said there is stuff in his life that he needs to change first before he gets baptized. So we are going to work with him and help him receive this great blessing.

Conference was awesome! It just seems like they are calling us all out. I loved the quote "We need strong Christian men in the Church." This is not the time for pansies. We need to step it up, and be valiant Christian men and show the world what's up. I loved President Utchdorf's talk, and when he told the story of the guy who was building the wall. "I am doing an important work, and I can not come down." I don't have my notes with me right now, but on Saturday, including priesthood, htere was 18 talks, and 8 of those were on tough times are coming, and dealing with trials. To tell you the truth I was pretty scared. But faith and fear cannot exist together. Yes, tough times are coming, but we know it is coming so we just need to have faith in the Lord that everthing is going to be alright. And I know that as long we have our family, everything is going to be alright. I just didn't like the quote, "Play time is over." You all know how much I like to play. But this is our wake-up call. We have had it too easy for too long. We need a trial of our faith (Mosiah 23:21-22). But I think one thing we need to do is save money. There are a lot of things we do that really we can take away and save money. Yall don't have to send me a bunch of packages just save the money. I don't need food. Send me your letters. I love getting letters during the week. They put a big grin on my face. Today I got a letter from Hailey, and I was so excited. But yea, the big thing I got from conference is that we are going to be tested. It is easy to keep the faith when everything is good in our lives. So we need to prepared.

Well, I should be getting to bed, tomorrow. It is Super P-Day! I am really excited. All of the missionaries on the Island are meeting at a big park and we are going to play a bunch of sports. It is also going to be the championship between me and Elder Chandler in tennis. He use to be in my zone, but got transferred before we could play the championship. He is a really good tennis player. He played in high school. So it will be really fun. And me and Elder Kelly have been dominating the doubles matches in our zone so we will see if anyone wants to step it up and give us a match.

Well, I love you all. You are always in my prayers. Keep the faith, and remember that you are nothing with out the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.

Love, Elder Hardy

Sunday, March 29, 2009