Monday, July 28, 2014

July 28, 2014

 A note from Anelieze Castrejon, Elder Castrejon's sister-in-law: It's almost been a year since we've posted any messages from Elder Castrejon. I slacked off a little but I wanted to start sharing again. This one particularly touched me since Elder Castrejon sounded so wise, much wiser than his 20 years. Enjoy.

Dear Family and Friends,
I am always grateful to share with you a piece of what I go through on my mission. I think to myself, how you must feel, or think about what I write and how I write it. If there is one thing I would like you to feel when reading my emails, it would be: to feel that I have changed, and continue to change every week. Change is the very nature of the Gospel of Jesus Christ. The very core to God's plan. As my old football coach would tell me: "You're either getting better or getting worse, there is no in between!". My coach was right. In this short moment of mortality we call "life" we are either getting better or worse. Becoming like Our Savior Jesus Christ or becoming like Mr. you know who.

A question I like to ask myself... and other missionaries on exchanges is: Were you better than who you were yesterday?

I think it is a valuable question we can all ask ourselves. In preach my gospel (the manual for missionary work of the church) states: "Just as vital as what you do, is WHO YOU ARE"
My Mother always used to tell me before I left the home: REMEMBER WHO YOU ARE!
I wish I would have remembered... it probably would've saved me a lot of heartache and trouble.
But who are we?! Do you know who you are?

In the scriptures we are taught that we are the very offspring of God. We are his children! He loves us! AND He loves YOU! If a person truly understood their identity in God's plan, that person would have a much easier time understanding the rest of his plan (and that's why it is the first principle we teach as missionaries). The opposition will try to deceive us and make us think we are more or less than who we really are. But in remembering who we are; we can say as Moses once did: "I am a son of God."
I would like to write you my testimony that I know God lives. And that he is very involved in your lives whether you see it or not. He is a loving Heavenly Father who listens, and responds. Anyone who has faith in him can access his power and forgiveness. I am a witness of this. I have not seen God, but I have felt him. He loves every single living creature and is anxiously engaged in their lives. He wants me, you, and everyone around us to return to him one day. I know he keeps his promises, because I've seen them fulfilled.

His work is hastening. This is real. Greg just returned home off his mission and Carmen Castaneyra just got her mission call to Wash. Dc North in Spanish and will be starting her mission with one of the young men here in Montreal who got called there as well (on the same day. Sept. 3). How ironic.

Transfer calls are coming up on Saturday and I have a gut feeling that I am leaving... We shall see. And in the next 2-3 months. Our mission will have 53 greenies/new missionaries. The face of our mission will change completely. Our Mission President has a lot of faith and knows everything will work out fine but in a week he has to assign 20 new trainers, 1 new office missionary, 8 new district leaders, 4 new zone leaders, 1 new assistant, 2 new Sister Training Leaders. This gives opportunity to a lot of our missionaries to lead and to grow. It is very exciting! But also a very delicate situation. We are hoping to keep the culture of our mission and train these new elders and sisters correctly :)

This past weekend. we had our ward mission activity. The ward had not had an activity in forever! So the missionaries took charge and with the help of the members we put together a fun activity at the park and called it: "Bring a friend!"

Everyone thought it was going to rain that day! BUT with faith, the missionaries prayed and not one drop of rain fell that evening. It was a huge success! It surpassed my expectations. We have built a lot of trust and enthusiasm into the ward in my last 3 months here in the Zarahemla Ward.

Share the gospel! There is nothing more fun!
Love you all! Have a great week :)

ps. so many good movies have come out lately... it had to be on my mission.........

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