Sunday, December 20, 2015

2015.12.14 Independencia

Dear Mom!

Hey how is everything going! This week was super duper, and to top it off, my handy dandy bird calendar tells me that the Christmas bird count starts today! So get out there and get counting! Besides that there really isn´t much else

love you

Nativity scene at the Monterrey Temple
elder garner

[Note to reader: Davis thought it was funny to send only this short email and then wait another 30 minutes before sending any more. Mom doesn't think it is very funny.]

Pssht yea right, a bunch of cool stuff happened this week. Where do I start. Well it sounds like the stake idea was super good, and it´s pretty funny that thanny was a robber, but I hope he got his recompense of justice, maybe he can read Alma 41

Anyway, we did another service project this week. We cleaned part of someones house, because it had set up in flames so everything was burnt and we swept everthing out and made it look all empty and less burnt. It was fun, but there was a lot of "sackcloth and" ashes (a good place to repent ey!?) and so we had mouth covers and even still I was coughing a bit during the day. No matter.

Also, this week was a very big week for mexico. Let me start with the more worldy things, and then we will go to the more spiritual things.

First of all, The Tigres (soccer team here in Monterrey) one the national cup last night so everyone in the streets was going crazy and yelling and shooting off fireworks...actually until 4:30 in the morning. That´s some celebratory stamina if you ask me. But I woke up at about 4 today and there were still fireworks going off, pretty crazy if you ask me.
Vamos Tigres!

Also, 12 of December is the birthday of the virgen maria guadalupe, so this whole weekend all of Monterrey came to our area to go to the giant catholic church and all of the stores and shops nearby. There were lots of parades, bands, traditions and noise. That contributed to the crazyness (and coolness of the week)

Lastly, We went over to the chapel of the temple yesterday to watch the broadcast of the Tijuana Temple Dedication. Wow was that amazing. I´ve been to the rededications (or the transmitions) but never a dedication. That was something different. President Uchtdorf was the one who dedicated the temple, and he gave a wonderful talk before offering the dedicatory prayer. He mentioned that we should always walk upright before God and be worthy to go to the temple continually. He invited everyone un Mexico to remember this special experience (and to write it in their journals, especially the youth.) Speaking of that, I finished the second journal I had and have now started in the new one, so I will see if there´s a quick way that I can send it, or if I will just hold on to it until I come home.

I´m kind of posed like a sister missionary, dang it...whatever i don´t even care!
Elder T and I worked harder than ever to finish this change. We truly thrusted in our sickle with all of our might. For that we were able to find a humble man who had just came out of prision, who wanted to change his whole life for his family. He wants to find God, and we contacted him on thursday and went to visit him on saturday. We talked about his family, and shared a message about the restoration of the Gospel and how throught knowing that it was true, he could change his life, be forgiven of his sins, and make promises with God to have an Eternal family. That touched his heart, and he felt the spirit, as he described: "A happiness that fills my chest, that I´ve never felt before, but something that gives me peace and hope for a better world." (Isn´t that what Moroni tells us in Ether 12:4? ) That was a very special experience that we had, along with many others this week, that I recorded in my journal. I know that when we talk about the importance of family, we can attract people´s attention, and when we teach them that the way that we can make covenants with our loving Heavenly Father to have an eternal family has been restored on the earth, they can feel the spirit. Try doing that this Christmas: Share the message of peace and good will.

Well I literally have no clue where I will be tomorrow. I´ve been here for 6 months, but there is a rumor that I will stay another change (which would be perfectly fine with me) but we´ll see tonight. I will confirm how we will communicate for Christmas next week. I´ll try to send a lot of pictures from the area.

Well, tell thanny not to rob anymore gold coins.

I love you!

Elder Garner

Sunday, December 13, 2015

2015.12.07 Independencia

In December, drinking horchata, I look psychotic...

Hey Mom!
That´s great that it arrived, Dillon is the best (not Elder J anymore...dang) [Note to reader: Davis sent a gift on the plane with a returning missionary who mailed it to us when he arrived home.] It sounds like the footlocker race was really fun and that thanny had a busy birthday.

Service projects are a good excuse to use machetes.
We did another service project this week. We went to the area of the zone leaders and cut grass and bushes in a park. it was tough and took a while because we only had machetes and some other tools, but I learned to use a machete really well! President and Sister Mcarthur came too, and it was a fun service project.

Baptism of Hermano J
Also, we had a baptism this week! Hermano J was baptized by his neighbor and dear friend JM. Hermano J has never been one to understand much of what we teach him, and less to remember what we teach him, but he has recieved the spirit of God and knows for himself that this church is true. He has humbled himself and repented of his sins, and now he has made a sacred covenant with God. It as pretty funny actually in his baptism. The members took a little time to go into the primary room for the baptism, so Hermano J said "Ya, I don´t want to wait anymore, I want to get baptized" so he went by the stairs that lead into the font and he was just about ready to jump in! We started, sang a hymn, said a prayer and shared one tiny little message and he was in there! hahahaha! Isn´t that great? I´m glad he was so excited to get baptized. He´s not a very social old man, but after his baptism he hugged every person that came. That was a great experience.

Remembering the MTC is a "Back to the Future" moment.
This week, Elder T and I probably had one of the most spiritual experiences of our missions. Last sunday, we had found an old lady named S, along with her husband J. They´re both very old and J can´t see or walk. That day we taught a little bit about baptism and authority and they accepted the invitation to be baptized. We returned on tuesday and that day she was very stressed, because she is having some problems with her family, a lost son and an angry grandson. Her and her husband both felt very bad in terms of health, and so instead of teaching them, we felt inspired to explain to them what a blessing is and see if they would like to recieve one. They have great faith and we gave them each a blessing of comfort and counsel. They were very greatful, and I was as well, that we could hold the priesthood and serve others with the responsiblity that the Lord had given us. Later, on friday (I was on divisions so I was not there) Elder T went to visit them and Hermana S was very ill with a fever and all. They  gave her another blessing and went to buy her medacine and dispense. I had seen her in the morning that day, before starting the divisions, and she did look pretty bad. Then, Saturday, we went and visited her, and she looked much better, much healthier. She told us about how she felt terrible and abandoned on friday, but how special that blessing was that my companion and the other Elder had given her was. She said that in that moment, she felt that God was speaking directly to her, and that he told her "Te mando que te esfuerces y seas valiente." or in enlgish "be strong and of good courage." Elder T and I were literaly stunned! and Elder T told her that was actually a scripture, and opened up to Joshua 1:9. She then bore us her testimony (not even knowing what a testimony is!) and said "I know that the my Heavenly Father spoke to me through the Holy Ghost that day, and that he loves me and that everything will be alright. I know what you [missionaries] are sent by God and share the truth, and that you do his will." That´s from what I remember, she said a little bit more than that, but it was amazing, and the spirit was stronge the whole lesson. That was probaly the smoothest, easiet lesson I have ever taught of the restoration of the gospel. She had read the pamplet before and said "I know it´s all true, the holy ghost told me, I just have a question or two about Joseph Smith and the Book of Mormon." After the lesson she said. "I know that it is all true, and that everything you are going to share with me is true." She wasn´t able to come to church with her husband, because they´re still recovering from being ill, but they will sure come the next sunday. I was so happy after that lesson I think I shouted "Hoorah for Israel!"

So, I probably only have one week left in independencia, or at least I´m guessing. Next sunday we will go to the chapel in the Temple to watch the Temple dedication of the Tiajuana, Baja California Temple, so that will be pretty awesome.

I haven´t got the package yet, but who knows it´s probably in the offices now. Let me know what you´re going to do for Christmas, I don´t know what I´m going to do yet, or where I´m going to be! (Mars)


Elder Davis Garner

Sunday, December 6, 2015

2015.11.30 Independencia

Drawing of the district by Davis

Hi Mom!

Well looks like Thanksgiving was a blast! I´m sure thankful that I´m here in the mission, and I´m very thankful that I have such a loving mother, a funny dad, and a brother who wears skinnier jeans than I ever wore.

This week, what happened...Well We have an investigator named J, I believe I have mentioned. He´s old and he´s fraile and he can´t see very well, and he´s sick and he doesn´t remember things...BUT he wants to get baptized, and he has felt moved to finally make that decision in his life. We try to teach him and everything, but he doesn´t remember hardly anything. He has listened to the missionaries before, and had recieved basically all of the lessons. but back then he didn´t want to get baptized. All I know is that he has humbled himself and repented of his sins, and wants to be baptized. He tries to obey the commandments and doesn´t have any problems with them, so he will probably be baptized this week!

Elders in the district before tree cutting service project.
Elder T in a tree with a machete.

Elders after service project with machetes, limbs intact.

We have been working hard in this area, and it is tough to find people who want to listen, even harder to find people who want to progress, but we have had some lessons this week that were full of the spirit, and that is what I really liked the most. It is great to see the spirit working in the person during the lesson, it often changes the whole outcome of the lesson. We taught one lady who was a bit skeptical at first, she had listened to us two times before and he had brought some members to come with us. The lesson was very powerful and at the end she said, tearing up "I´m in good hands, I´m with good people."

Now it´s December, that was fast. That´s about all that happened. Tell Aunt Sue that I don´t really see any birds in the area that I´m in because it´s really urban.
I´ll send some pictures that I couldn´t send last week.


Elder Garner
Found a Utah license plate in Monterrey.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

2015.11.09 Letter from the Mission President


                                                                                                                         November 09th, 2015

Dear Elder Garner´s Family:

It is my pleasure to inform you of a recent leadership assignment given to your son, Elder Garner. He has been assigned to serve as a district leader in the Mexico Monterrey West Mission.  Elder Garner has demonstrated fine leadership qualities and a strong testimony of his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

A district leader sets an example for the missionaries in his district through his study of the scriptures and the gospel, obedience, hard work, proselyting skills, and other aspects of missionary work.  He carries a full proselyting load in his assigned area and strives to baptize weekly.  He supervises, teaches, and inspires the missionaries during district meetings and companion exchanges.  He also interviews baptismal candidates. He practices Christ like love, looking after the well-being of missionaries in his district.  He demonstrates effective planning, and teaches how to work with local priesthood leaders and members.  He also follows up with the missionaries, holding them accountable for their efforts. We depend on our district leaders to motivate the other missionaries and to be good examples, setting their own goals higher and “going the extra mile.”  A conscientious and hard-working district leader has an immense impact on the entire zone, in fact it has been said that the success of a mission depends on its district leaders.

Sister McArthur and I appreciate Elder Garner, for his efforts to carry forward the work of the Lord in this new assignment.   We express our appreciation to you for having raised such a fine young man.  One who loves the gospel, loves the Lord, and serves him with all of his heart, might, mind and strength.  It has been my pleasure to get to know him and to work with him in this great and important work of the latter days.
May the Lord bless you while your son is away serving in this marvelous work. 


President Daniel D. McArthur                              Sister Bunny K. McArthur
President, Monterrey West Mission                                               Sister McArthur, Monterrey West Mission

2015.11.23 Independencia

Hey mom!

Firstly, I don´t even remember what Thanksgiving is, but that´s whatever. I´ve started to sing Christmas hymns in the lessons, and in the streets and such. It´s starting to get a bit colder, so now I can put on a sweater and use more blankets. That´s pretty neat I guess, because now I don´t sweat through every pair of clothes I wear. that´s about it BYE! 

[Davis sent a second email.]
nah just kidding, this was a pretty good week. We´re getting in the Christmas spirit now. As a mission I guess we are trying to do as many service projects as possible for the Christmas season. Our District did one this Wednesday. We headed over to another area, and we helped an investigator cut down some trees and clean up his backyard. I guess the most reliable and only tool that they use here in Mexico is the machete, so there was some hacking and some Missionaries pretending to be Ammon protecting the Flocks of King Lamoni. (Luckily there were no missionaries pretending to be lamanites scattering the flock.) It was pretty fun, and I´m pretty sure that it will help that investigator feel a lot better about what we do so he can continue to progress.

We haven´t been finding many people to teach, but we have two investigators that are progressing, and that is exciting, because they both have th the goal in their mind to get baptized. One of them is "A", and he came to church again this sunday. He is feeling a lot healthier and a lot closer to God, and a lot less shy. That makes me pretty happy. Changes are coming up in three weeks, and I don´t think that I will be able to see "A" get baptized, but I want to keep helping him progress and recieve the blessings of the restored gospel for as long as I can.

There´s this one video that I really like (actually two, but the both have the same song and basically the same message.) We have been sharing it with the members, and have been encouraging them to look for opportunities to serve in this Christmas season. I feel really good everyday, full of joy, because I am trying to help all recieve this gladness, and the Lord is blessing us more and more, slowly but surely, with more opportunities to help mankind, in spite of the large gatherings of people for Catholic traditions. I want to share the video(s) with you, and make the same invitation:That you all can go looking for ways to serve, and that you can help spread the Spirit of CHRISTmas
What Shall We Give? - Christmas Music Video

this one has President Monson speaking (both good for Family home evening, and up there with the family for thanksgiving)
What Shall We Give? President Monson

OK so just a heads up for an awesome week.

I love you all,

Elder Garner

Monday, November 23, 2015

2015.11.16 Independencia

Elder W and I (Elder W was in the MTC with me and is from Redondo Beach CA)

" many stairs.."

On Mon, Nov 16, 2015 at 5:24 PM, Davis Garner <> wrote:
Hey Mom!

Well I guess I will be in independencia for one more change at least! wow, that´ll be almost 6 months Nicolas Bravo. This change will end one week early though, because the change would have normally ended on the 21st, but there are no flights for the missionaries going home, nor the missionaries coming to the mission, so it will be one week early. but, I will still be here in Independencia for one of the biggest mexican holidays: Day of the Virgin Maria Guadalupe. 12th of December is supposively her birthday, but has started since the end of october. There are many traditional dancers, dancing parades, pilgramiges, and it´s all so abundant here in our area because they have the largest catholic church here in Independencia, called the Vasilica. Coming closer to the day, the parade and pilgrimage groups are now every day and more frequent. I´m not one to complain, but the most busy day is sunday, and they all pass by our small chapel to reach the center, so you can imagine taking the sacrament while people are passing by banging drums and chanting prayers. I do like that they sell churros all over the area now, and they´re very cheap... Mmmmmm....Churrrros!

It sounds like Thanny did a really good job in his last race this season, and that he has developed some good mental strength. He does seem to be more crazy than me. I think that If I came home right now, I would be too serious of a person. My companion said that I´ve been a bit too serious. I guess that obedience and diligence doesn´t have to come boxed with being super serious. Maybe my "a bit too serious" is not that serious, but I´m really trying to learn that there is a time and a place for everything. I guess when a pilot tries to adust his flight settings, he wavers a tiny bit to the left and to the right, so I´ll waver a little bit as I try to find the perfect fit.

Anyway, what else. J got the Aaronic priesthood last week (SICK DAWG) he didn´t come to church this week because he had to go to the clinic to check his leg that day, but he is just a lot happier, a lot of members visit him and he has a lot of support. Alexis had to work more and couldn´t come to church, that was sad, and he was sad, but we will try to encourage him so he never gives up.

Hmm, not the most spiritual email, sorry. You can read my journal when I get home (or when I send it, cuz I´m about to finish this one.)
Talk you you next week!

I love you

Elder Garner

Sunday, November 22, 2015

2015.11.09 Independencia

We didn`t go to Cerro de la silla today, but we did go to a famous park here "Parque fundidora" and I`m not thirsty anymore.


J and the empanadas that he makes

Hey Mom!

It was a good week! Another change has ended, so I have yet to wait until the night to find out if I stay or if I go. That`s probably what I don`t like. But hmmm where do I start...

With this...15 MINUTES AGO I SAW 2 GREEN JAYS!!!!!! Finally!!!! It only took 14 months! yeeesh! They were super cool, and I actually saw them with Elder Jones in the offices. it was a good last moment with Elder J, because he has finished his mission and will be home on wednesday. I`ll send the less than average picture that I got.
You have to look carefully for the Green Jay in the branches.
 Anyway, There was a good experience that we had with A. He has been progressing slowly, with reading and quiting smoking, and we went to visit him on friday. When we got there he was feeling terrible, having a relapse of some sort due to the lack of cigarettes, he didn`t feel like eating anything, and he tried to smoke a cigarette but it was just too gross for him, so he threw it out. Now, he was feeling terrible, but I was pretty happy that he was going through that and all. Not that he was in pain, but that I knew that he could his faith could grow greatly right then. I guess I felt like Ammon, when he saw the panicking servants of King Lamoni:

 29  Now  they  wept  because  of  the  fear  of  being  slain.  Now when  Ammon  saw  this  his  heart  was  swollen  within  him with  joy;  for,  said  he,  I  will  show  forth  my  power  unto these  my  fellow-servants,  or  the  power  which  is  in  me,  in restoring  these  flocks  unto  the  king,  that  I  may  win  the hearts  of  these  my  fellow-servants,  that  I  may  lead  them  to believe  in  my  words.

Anyway, sorry about the big font, copied off of But there we offered to give him a blessing, and to go over to the chapel and do it.  We explained to him what a blessing was, how it worked, and how, by his faith, he could be relieved. We read part of Alma 15 together before as well, talking about Zeezrom sick in bed and Alma coming to heal him. This was probably the most important part:

 6  And  it  came  to  pass  that  Alma  said  unto  him,  taking him  by  the  hand:  Believest  thou  in  the  power  of  Christ unto  salvation?
 7  And  he  answered  and  said:  Yea,  I  believe  all  the  words that  thou  hast  taught.
 8  And  Alma  said:  If  thou  believest  in  the  redemption  of Christ  thou  canst  be  healed .
 9  And  he  said:  Yea,  I  believe  according  to  thy  words.
sorry again. But we gave him a simple blessing, and talked a little bit before finishing the lesson with a prayer. He didn`t look exausted nor burdened anymore, more calm and content. He told us that he felt much better, and He finally came to church this sunday! He had a good experience there as well, which makes me feel very happy. I hope to see A's faith continue to grow by his actions, because he is doing really well right now, even in his trials.

J is doing well as well, he has been able to understand so much more, now that he has the gift of the holy ghost. He was confered the aaronic priesthood as the office of a priest yesterday, and it was funny because the bishop did a priesthood inventory yesterday of how many priesthood holders of each office there were, and when he called priests, J was the only one paying attention, so he appeared to be the only priest, just being ordained seconds before. Way to be J, maybe I didn`t tell that story too great. We gave him a triple as well and he was grateful for that.

Sounds like Nathaniel is doing awesome! I`m super happy that they are doing so well and I hope that they can make it further than we ever did. I also hope that Seth goes farther in football than I ever did (I think he already has.)

ok I don`t have much left, except a dumb joke... in spanish.

¿Qué fue el último animal que Dios creó?

¿El delfín por supuesto!

So it says "What was the last animal that God created?

The Dolphin of course! it`s a pun because while EL delfín means the dolphin, El del fin means the the last one. HA


Elder Garner