Honduras Bound


Well my time here in the mtc is about over.  Tomorrow morning I will be ready to leave.  My luggage is fine and underweight and I’m almost done packing. On to Honduras for the Lord’s work!

Just want to share something my genius companion made while we here. He just threw a bunch of scriptures together and this is his little piece:

For All The Servants of the Lord

Wherefore, I the Lord ask you this question- unto what were ye ordained?
To preach my gospel by the Spirit. Behold,
I have created the smith that bloweth the coals in the fire,
and that bringeth forth an instrument for my work.
For as the rain cometh down, and the snow from heaven, and returneth not thither,
but watereth the earth and maketh it bring forth an bud,
that it may give seed to the sower and bread to the eater:
so shall my word be that goeth forth out of my mouth:
it shall not return unto me void, but it shall accomplish that which i please,
and it shall prosper in the thing where to i sent it.
And whether it is by mine own voice or the voice of my servants,
it is the same.

He that is weak among you here after shall be made strong,
that you may chase darkness from among you.
Wherefore you are the possessor of all things;
for all things are subject unto me, both in heaven and on the earth,
the life and the light, the Spirit and the powers sent forth by my will,
through my Son.
And the earth will tremble and the mountains flee according to your command.
And the rivers of water will turn out of their course;
and the roar of the lions will be heard out of your mouth.
And so great will be the power of the language which I will give you.
No weapon that is formed against thee shall prosper;
and every tongue that shall rise against thee in judgment
thou shalt condemn.
For ye shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace.
The mountains and the hills shall break forth before you into singing,
and all the trees of the field shall clap their hands.
He that is ordained of God and sent forth,
the same is appointed to be the greatest,
notwithstanding he is the least and the servant of all.

And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord;
 and great shall be the peace of thy children.
In righteousness shalt thou be established:
thou shalt be far from oppressions;
for thou shalt not fear, and from terror;
for it shall not come near thee.

This is the heritage of the servants of the Lord,
and their righteousness is of me. 

So anyways, my companion is sick, and I’m really gonna miss him.  Love you all and I hope I will be able to email you once I get to Honduras, but I don’ t know!

Love you all, Elder Ollis

This Week was Really Really Bad, and Really Really Good


Alright, i didn't have much last week and this week definitely made up for it.  SO... this week was really really bad, and really really good. and i'm really really tired ha ha.  so i will start at the begining.  mom don't die of a heart attack, but my pants are very disappointing.  i have a few pairs that have stitching coming undone and threads hanging out, and a few of them, the top of the pockets has come unstitched from the waistline so i'm going to be a very experienced seamster by the end of my mission. poor worksmanship.   so that started off my week and i was not happy. 
then, all the elders in the district woke up one day with an outbreak of diarrhea.  that morning until about 2 in the afternoon, was an absolute nightmare.  i think i went at least every half hour.  we were all afraid to eat after that.  my butt is still healing.  so that was a complete destroyer of happiness for that day.  then to top it all off, i got 200 american dollars stolen from my wallet.  all my cash.  which is like 2000+ pesos.  so whichever of the cleaners cleaned my wallet got a nice bonus for the day. Unfortunatley it was all my doing.  i left my wallet on the table because our closets didn't lock.  however me and my companion later figured out that we had each others keys that was why.  so completely my fault.  again, i was not happy.  so those are just the few things that contributed to my week being really really bad.  however, the one occurence of good was so awesome that it cancelled everything out. 
i think i told a little about our current investigatior. she's really quite stubborn and our lessons had been really bad. we had an activity that was supposed to help us find ideas to help teach this investigator and i recieved a prompting to share section 121 in D and C.  this is when joseph smith was in liberty jail and is having a hard time, but through prayer, God comforts him. i felt that this would help us because our investigator had a rough life and an event that made her feel that God didn't listen to her. i thought that the story of joseph smith was similar to hers and she would appreciate it and that we could share with her that sometimes our trials are for our good.  
we go to the lesson confident that this would be the lesson that would get to her and that she would feel the spirit and change.  however, she asked one question the whole time and we thought that the whole thing had gone in one ear and out the other. she didn't understand how the event in her life that was difficult had helped her to grow.  i was so disappointed. 
the next lesson, we decided to talk about the book of mormon, since it is the keystone of our religion.  my companion had a great idea to highlight certain scriptures that we though might help her.  we had a few questions we thought we should ask to understand what she wanted from our lessons.  and the lesson came.  before hand i felt that i should ask what she expected to get out of our lessons, or what she wanted from them.  i asked that question and she opened up more than we had heard before. she said she had thought about our last lesson and she explained that she had been abused by her father when she was young and had prayed and had not recieved the protection that she asked for.  she wanted to know why.  
the spirit was there as we told her that we were only 18 and we didn't know why God had allowed these things in her life. we didn't know why sometimes God does certain things and that we have to have faith.  we told her that she can ask God why, through prayer.  after that i recieved a prompting to share something that my branch president shared with me.  i told her that when we want to talk to God we pray, and when God wants to talk with us, he will through the scriptures.  i know that is true.  i shared that and my testimony of the power of the book of mormon to change her life, and to bring her happiness in this life and the next if she follows the principles that are talked about in the book.  my companion did the same.  
it was an awesome experience. she took the book and read the scriptures we highlighted. it was awesome.  afterwards me and my companion discussed things that happened and realized that the impression i had to share the story about joseph smith was not a failure.  without following that prompting, i believe that the lesson would not have impacted her the way it did. she wouldn't have reflected on the story and i don't think that she would've opened up to us like she did the lesson after.  it was an awesome experience i learned so much from it.  i learned and was able to really grow in how to recognize the spirit and i learned that we just need to listen to it.  i testify that the power of the spirit is amazing and im so very thankful for the opportunity i have to be on a mission and be so close to the spirit.  im so very thankful for the power of the book of mormon.  it is an awesome book that our gospel couldnt exist without.  i love the gospel and i'm thankful for this week and the things i experienced.  
Mom! you have no idea about time flying by.  i'm going in to the real field in less than a week! i'm so excited! to answer your questions, yes i have lost some weight ha ha. its good though. i haven't recieved anything about leaving yet so i dont know, i will be able to email you right before i leave i think so we'll see. i love the fact that your quotes always back up something i learned in a devotional this past week ha ha! i love you much and if possible please send me a package with body wash, deodorant, lotion, and tons of pens pencils note cards paper, sticky notes, tabs to stick in my scriptures, and other office supplies! and candy, that would be appreciated!.  love you and miss you and i'm a little mad that you decided to start hiking after i leave ha ha! 
DAD! i cannot believe that is thomas on the scale.  that worries me a little.  ha ha i heard about the [BYU] game the other day.  what can you do.  maybe they aren't reading their scriptures enough ;)  i just hope everything is good at home. i just want to tell you something i learned in a devotional by elder holland.  it pertains to your comment about sometimes our own soul is the one that is changed.  he said that the missionary program is only supposed to do one thing. and that he only expects us to have one true convert.  ourselves.  he is my new favorite apostle ha ha we have heard so many good talks from him!.  love you and miss home
keep sending more pictures! and buy a puppy........Love, Elder Ollis 

I'm Officially a Veteran at the MTC


Well, im officially a veteran at the mtc here now, five weeks in and two more to go.  its crazy. i'm excited to get into the field.  as for this week its been pretty good but also very difficult.  me and my companion elder meono are teaching an investigator that has had a difficult life and really likes to be miserable.  its tough.  we've been trying to get her to pray so she can feel that god loves her and listens to her but she is unwilling.  one of our lessons went absolutely terrible.  we repeated everything because we didn't know how to help her.  we've really been struggling to know how to help her feel gods love for  her.  we both are having a hard time with it.  but its alright i guess. we will find something if we study with faith.  
i just want to share the fact that the scriptures are amazing.  i love them so much.  we have five or six hours to study them and i wish we had more. we do an activity as a district in which we read the book of mormon very slowly and sit and ponder.  its so amazing.  we only get through probably five verses in a half hour but as i sit and ponder the scriptures i find so much. so many deeper meanings and things like that.  i love studying the scriptures. i think i have begun to see parts of my patriarchal blessing come into my life. also i really had my testimony strengthened about the restoration and that joseph smith is a prophet.  its such an amazing story.  we watched a movie about it on sunday and it was so good.  he was such an amzing man and the movie definitely made me want to be better and be able to have the lord work through me on my mission as he did with joseph smith.  i hope to meet him in heaven very much later in life ha ha 
its a new week here, and ive got a lot of work to do. im excited for this coming week and the opportunity to teach our investigators and progress them. and mom the opportunity for me to leave everything worldly is hard, but is exactly how we should be living. 
for jett and jacob: 1 you better go on a mission 2 prepare now.  i wish i would've had good study habits and known the scripturres better. if you can do that, the mtc will be a breeze unless you are learning a language then its somewhat difficult ha ha i cannot emphasize enough how great the scriptures are.
WELL..... mexican independence day? oh man, it was an absolute party.  i wish i would've brought my vuvuzela.  we all crammed into the gym and watched some dancing and singing and it was an absolute riot.  all the hispanics sat together and screamed and sung there heads off.  but that was saturday night.  the actual holiday was on sunday.  so sunday night we got to watch the live broadcast of the Grito, which is when the president rings a ceremonial bell and says a few words and we all yell viva a whole lot.  afterwards president pratt stood up and said that its traditional for the mexicans to do lots of fireworks, but also to shoot there guns into the air.  so we all had to go straight to our dorms and stay there.  it was a wild night.  gunfire and fireworks.  crazy. 
i cant print the music. so if you could send it to me that would be awesome but i dont think ill get it before i leave unless you pay for extra fast shipping or whatever. it takes two weeks for packages.  and if you send one, send chocolate and whatever else you see fit for my needs :) 
Dad, im really proud of the fact that you are willing to go back to school and i wish you the best of luck
love you all,
Elder Ollis

This Week Was Great...It was Like Christmas!


Well this week was great.  it was like christmas because we got vending machines in our apartment block and fly swatters in every room and thats fun! its also mexican independence day on friday so thats awesome. ill let you know how that goes.  i dont have much to say today but i just wanted to let you all know that things are starting to work out.  
these last few weeks have been a struggle for me and my companion. we've had a hard time bringing the spirit into our lessons and that was something i had been praying about.  then this sunday we had a devotional about how to bring the spirt and a talk by elder holland about that also.   i also studied in Alma 17 which really gave me some knowledge about how to be a better missionary.  as me and my companion have made a renewed effort in our studying and our obedience, we have seen our lessons get better.  the spirit can only work through clean vessels of the lord.  one of the things that is especially hard for me is that the spirit is affected by your attitude.  so i'm trying my hardest to be positive at all times.  
my camera is blurry because half those were taken by hispanics ha ha thats why.  i'll send some more pictures and stuff next week.  thanks for ordering the music.  everythings good in mexico and i love you very much.  
Elder Ollis 

I the Lord Have Chosen Thee


just wanted to share a little experience i had the other day.  i was studying in preach my gospel about the savior organizing the church on the earth.  and i read a callout box of scriptures and they were about the priesthood.  in one it explained how important the priesthood is and  i remember writing down in my journal that i felt unworthy sometimes to hold such power and that i wondered why i was called to have it.  the next scripture i read was as if heavenly father was speaking to me comforting me. it was christ speaking to his apostles but he might as well have been speaking to me.  it said i the lord have chosen thee... and went on to talk about how i can ask god for what i need and it will be given to me.  it was such a cool experience to recieve that reassurance through the scriptures.  i didnt bring my journal so i dont have all the details or it would be longer but it definitely strenghtend my testimony about the scritpures and that heavenly father knows me and loves me. 
yo amo ustedes e yo quiero compartir mi testimonio.  yo se que la iglesia is dios iglesia, e esta verdadero.  yo se que missionals es muy importante e estoy agradecido por la opportunidad a serve a missional.  yo se que jesu cristo muerto por nuestro pecados.  estoy agradecido por la expacion.  yo se que jose smith is a verdadero profeto de dios e el palabras es verdadero.  yo se que el libor de mormon is verdadero e estoy agradecido por la escrituras.  dont try and translate that cause its not all correct ha ha love you and I'm sending some pictures. 

love you much, Elder Ollis 

First Week in the MTC - the Hardest Thing I've Ever Done in my Entire Life


well familia mi espanol es mas y menos.  which means more or less. so its coming along.  tell mom she cant read these stories because she'll probably cry.  and im sorry everything is so sloppy in my email they have different key boards here and i dont know where certain things are ha ha.
So, this last week was my first week and it was pretty much the hardest thing ive ever done in my entire life.  the second day wasn't bad, but i realized that i have no idea what anyone is saying here.  then thursday came along and it was very hard. i was very discouraged because there are many kids in my class who are very good at spanish already. so im behind and its rough.  i had a pretty bad day when the teacher came and told to not use my notes during lessons because it detracts from the spirit. i sat there thinking, well i wont have the spirit if i dont have a lesson and know what to say.  so that was rough.  the next day wasn't much better.  we did a practice teaching appointment and i couldnt remember anything i planned to say and it was very bad.  the lady we taught gave us weird and confused looks the whole time. so me and my companion (who is awesome by the way we get along great) elder moeno were pretty depressed.  

then as i was laying in bed about to fall asleep, i got a bloody nose.  and that really made me mad because i havent been sleeping very well here.  there are police constantly driving around the city with there sirens on and i constantly am tossing and turning.  so i was mad.  and i go in the bathroom and it just starts going.  im trying to shove toilet paper in my nose while standing over a garbage can and bleeding all over the bathroom. it looked like a crime scene. that moment was probably the lowest ive been in the mtc yet.  as i stood there just sick of it already after three days, thinking that i couldnt do it anymore, i said just a prayer that my nose would stop so i could go to bed. which was also bloody ha ha.  after i prayed i stood there just so down and then ether 12 27 came into my head.  weak things become strong.  and my nose stopped and i was able to get some sleep.  

the next day was not much better our next discussion was better as to the language part, but the teaching part probably confused the crap out of our investigator.  she stared at us with a scrunched up face the whole time.  so that wasnt much better.  oh and i almost forgot.  we learned how to pray and use prayer terminology in class one day and we got down on our knees and said our first prayer in spanish.  as i started to stumble through the language, i could feel that heavenly father was listening.  i knew that he loved me and i could feel that as i prayed.  the love and joy that i felt as i prayed was so strong.  so ya back to the story.  somehow we made to sunday, and that was such a spiritual recharge.  we heard a blistering talk by Elder holland.  he used the word stupid twice and grilled probably 12 missionaries on the first chapter of nephi. it was the most intense/strongest talk ive ever heard. me and my companion definitely agreed we need to work harder.  then we watched the testament.  the spirit was so strong at the end when christ heals helum.  i know that christ lives, and that he loves us and i can only imagine what it will be like to be in his presence.  so we were recharged for the new week.  

monday rolled along and we had another discussion to give.  me and my companion both fasted that it would go well.  and can i just tell you that it was absolutely amazing.  i never knew that something that good could come out of starving myself for two meals.  which arent that great anyways, but hey its food.  the lesson went about as good as the other two for the first part then we asked if she had questions.  we were always scared to do that because we didnt know if we would understand her and be able to answer.  but we decide we would because we were taught to do that.  she asked some questions as our lesson was about the book of mormon.  she was confused about joseph smith and where he got the plates from.  then she asked how we know that heavenly father and christ appeared to joseph and how we knew they were real.  i knew exactly what i wanted to say and i was able to get most of it out so she understood.  i told her that i knew they were real becuase i read the book of mormon and i have prayed about it and know its true and that it testifies of christ.  i then invited her to read it and know.  she said yes and after wards we asked her how she felt.  she said the felt so good and we tried to explain that was the spirit.  after the lesson me and my compaƱero walked out and said a prayer of thanks and broke our fast.  we were so happy.  

the investigator wasnt real and she probably made it a little easir on us by pretty much askin us to bear our testimonies but i dont care.  the joy we had form that success and being  able to communicate and sharing our testimony when it just fit right in perfectly at the time was so amazing.  im so excited to go and teach real investigators and i can only imagine the joy we will have when they also feel the spirit and we are able to share what we know.  so its p day and its tuesday so there ya go.  we are going to the temple. probably wont understand a thing ha ha. also i got a cold and an ear infection over the week so ive pretty much experienced everything here. ha ha no parasites and im still not eating the lettuce

dad-the food is hit and miss, theres plenty of carbs and bread ha ha. the language is coming along slowly and my companion is awesome.  he said i remind him of jim carrey. ha ha and i actually read about the atonement the other day in preach my gospel.  it is definitley helping me to know that christ knows what im feeling and that i can overcome because god cannot give us a trial we cant over come.  also i need a copy of the sheet music to how can i be and the words pronto.  my district likes to sing.

mom-stop crying ha ha everything is fine and i love mexico. you can have my pink socks

hope theres not a puppy at home yet, love you all and pictures are on the way next week!
hasta luego,
Elder Ollis

Second Day in Mexico


Well its the second day here in mexico and it rained all night. Its nice and cool and overcast.  Im loving it.  I met nic park and Ethan Woodward here already and thats pretty good.  I didnt get much sleep last night cause there seem to be a lot of cops driving past the mtc ha ha.  so thats alright though, im exhausted so ill sleep tonight.  We woke up this morning and started to eat breakfast and we were interrupted by our first earthquake warning.  we all have to go outside and stand in green circles ha ha but there was no earthquake, which i was bummed out. Hope everyones doing fine and i love you all.
Elder Ollis

Hey I'm here!


Hey im here! mexico is amazing its nice and cool and cloudy and it stopped raining as soon as we got off the plane. I hope mom is doing okay tell everyone i love them and ill be back soon!
Elder Ollis