Honduras San Pedro East Mission

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

September 4

September 4
hi mom
 yes i have true to the faith it is a huge help. this week a had a bad cold, well still have it but its getting better. we didnt have water for 3 days again, that was pretty annoying. i glad that our family is safe in texas, that storm was supposed to hit us 2 weeks ago and we got  calls  that told us to have a supply of food and water in case we cant leave. but luckily it skipped us.
 kind of a boring week, just our visits as normal. we did a fundraiser to help a couple  earn the money they need to get married. they sold 190 hamburgers. luckily lots of people helped out in the ward and we mainly just delivered them, which was also a lot of work. but tomorrow we go with the couple to the city hall to take out some of their papers.
today we played soccer with the zone. i had some trouble with my mission card and couldnt take out any money, but i think i just had the pin switched up and will try again tomorrow. this week we have interviews and zone conference. well see what happens there,supposedly for this month we have a goal of 4 to 5 baptisms for each companionship. with our people right now, if everything works out, we should be able to make it. well see.
 anyways  its a pretty tiring area with lots of hills that we climb all day and i m always pretty tired at the end of the day. but things are going good.
love you mom!

hey dad, good week, normal week. long hot days as always. im always sweating so much here haha. usually my garments i have to let dry out before i put them in my laundry basket from all the sweat. youre probably right about the book, dont worry about sending it. ill just keep studying the materials i have. but i officially have less than a year left now even though i havent hit the official 1 year mark. its been a long time and still so long to go, but it does go fast. we have to do a lot of contacting to reach the goal of 15 to 20 news each week. ive met some intresting people. yesterday we met a lady who has a lot of mormon family but she has a lot of doubts about the temple and about things she just doesnt understand. i felt impressed to just bear testimony of the book of mormon and of joseph smith. who knows if she litened to what i said, but maybe one day she will remember. it was kind of a cool experience. the family, well we just contacted them to leave a prayer and a blessing with them and its actually an older couple who live there and she was just visiting. i might go back again with the couple, they were super nice and seemed very interested in my testimony.
 anyways things are going pretty good here otherwise. i miss you guys and hope all is well. i love you!

August 2017

August 6, 2017

hey dad,  not a bad week this week. pretty much all the baptism that were closest  have fallen and wont happen until after i leave, unless a miracle happens this week we still have one potencial who could be baptized this saterday. If you remember the guy with the tumor on his neck, he finally went today to san pedro to get it removed. literally every time weve visited him he s said . it hurts so bad, im going tomorow to get it removed. until yesterday, what we had heard is that it was  a fatal tumor and that they werent going to operate it. but aprently it was just gossip and it makes me very happy. hopefully he will be able to regain some memory now and feel better, its been so sad to visit him  and see him in pain. hes lives just a perfect life and  is a great example. a very kind and selfless man. so its great that he will be feeling a lot better soon!
 other than that im expecting transfers next week, ill find out next sunday night where im going. this week ill pretty much just be saying bye o people and wrapping up some ends here. i have a dentist appointment on wednesday, i had it for today but the doctr had an emergency in another city. i told mom about that. it will cost somewhere between 50 to 80 dollars from what i know. its 10for the consultation fee, and 20 for each cavity, and then i dont know if they might do some other stuff that will also cost. hopefully it works out, not looking forward to it too much. love you dad im glad things are going well for your work. im glad you told me not to tell anyone about dallins marriage plans, because i probably would have otherwise haha. thats pretty exciting!  love you!
August 14:
hey dad! yeah 11 months and now in 2 weeks, on the 31st, will be my one year from return date! with the way the transfers are i should e returning august 31 2018! it seems very far away but the time has gone fast. i have defintily seen my progress as ive been looking back. i do want to be home, but i know i will miss out on experinces and just the molding that the lord has for me. its been very cool to look back and see where i am now. and looking forward to what i can become! i do have transfers to La Ceiba in the area Lempira. ill be in the same distrcit as my favorite old comp so that will be fun. I will also be the sr companion, kinda nervous but it will be good learning experience.Anyways things have been going good here, got to finsih packing up my bags. it will be very intersting to see how i will fit all my things in my bags. love you dad!

hey mom! busy week but lots of good things. i have transfers to a city about 2 hours away called la ceiba. i will be the sr companion. kind of nervous but it will be nice to be able to do things the way i want to. thats sop funny what that guy said to dallin! thyats cool to see hes making the move. oooooooo so i went to the dentist..... bad news . turns out i have 8 cavities. now 6 since he only had time to fix 2. i guess a year of coke and fried things has been pretty bad to my teeth. hopefully i can get the rest done in Ceiba. its pronounced sayba in case you were wondering. but yeah that was some bad news to hear and my teeth still hurt. he had to go pretty deep on one of them. well i will be buying some flouride mouthwash and start using that as well to help my teeth but i miss us dental care haha. ill write a general email becasue it was very intresting week this week. love you!
From: Joshua Brian Gardner <gardner.joshua@myldsmail.net>
Sent: Monday, August 14, 2017 1:48 PM
To: Nicole Gardner
Subject: Re: Wow! Job interview and test

haha i never buy it, just we always get offered it for dinners and visits and stuff. i dont like it that much but  cant turn it down haha! they have banana soda here that i really like, and also coconut soda! its so good. but no i dont buy soda alot

On Mon, Aug 14, 2017 at 2:45 PM, Nicole Gardner <wesandnicole@hotmail.com> wrote:
HI my boy!

So lol I would have to say you've learned why Coke is bad for you and will stop drinking it now right?  That stuff eats away grease on car engines, definitely eats teeth.  😊

Love you!

To Everyone August 14 A Week of Strange Occurances
well things have been very busy here as usual. after 6 months in this area i will be having transfers to a city about 2 hours away... LA Ceiba! my new area is called Lempira. New companion is a gring se llama Elder Gessell. He has about 4 months less time then me so it will interesting to see how things play out.
But today im gonna start off with something super funny that happened to us 2 weeks ago. So we were about 30 minutes from our house,  and we just decided to take a break for a little at the gas station that was close by. my companion had to use the bathroom so i was just kind of waiting around for him  looking for some snacks.   i hear the water running and i know ok hes almost done. he comes rushing oput and asks the lady at the coubnter for the water key. She didnt  really know what he was talking about, and asked one of the other employees to take a look. he takes one look inside and starts freaking out! turns out  my comp went to flush the urinal, it didnt work, so he pressed it again, and the whole thing fell off the wall and the water started to flood the gas station. he flooded probably half the store. it was so funny! the manager came out and was like who did this? kind of angry like, but we were just over by the register buying some stuff and just kind of raised our hands. then we went and calmy ate our snacks outside.it was so funny! good old honduran pipe engineering at its finest. 
 moving on to this week...
so we were pretty far away with a less active and an investigator that we just set a date for the 26.(yes!) they are super cool, she works for avon and has like 95 poeple who sell avon under her. but anyways the bus for that area only passes once every hour. it had just passed by going the other way when we finished, so we started off on what would have been about an hour and a half walk to our next appt. we hear this bus coming, and were like thats kind of weird, its not time for the bus yet. We turn around and its this big blue bus that says baptist dental brigade!. my comp sticks his thumb out and the bus slows down enough for us to jump on. so we get on, and its a bunch of gringos just looking at us like what are you doing on our bus? Also very funny! were justlike hey were just gonna catch a ride for a littel and then we started talking with them. We sat down next to the pastor of their church we we told him that were mormons he just kind of stopped talking. but we  kept the convo going anyways. they had been up in the mountains doing some work up there for part of a 2 week mission. we told them our missions our 2 years and their mouths just dropped! it was awesome.  the bus was actually headed  about a block from where we were going so we rode it all the way there. then when we were about to get off, we prayed with them! it wqas so cool.
another thing that happened this wek... we were doing a mormon helping hands service at lancetilla botanical jarden. which for those that didnt know is the second biggest botanical jarden in the world.  so we wehre there servicing when a missionary who finished hios mission last transfer and his family randomly found us! it was super cool. anyways lots of other cool stuff happened this week but dont hAve time to explain all, hope yall doing well, enjoiyng life and whatnot
sigue fiels.
elder gardner

August 21:
Hey dad, thats awesome with your work. and with dallin also haha! Good idea with the water, i will try it. today i spent some money and bought some sensydyne toothpaste and some mouthwash. my new area is pretty cool. its basically just a lot of steep hills but its fun. Turns out my comp is kind of used to taking the initiative on things, but im working on taking on the responsibility.  this ward is pretty big and actually seems to function like a ward in the states. we had ward consel  sunday morning and it was pretty scary, but this ward definitely gets things done. the bishop has been in the hospital the past month but even so the ward is doing great. we have an awesome  mission leader here also.its going pretty good though. love you dad! good luck with things this week.
hey mom! its been a good week. a long week but a good one. my area is pretty cool. its basically lots of very steep hills . the beach isnt in my area but i dont think its too far. were also surrounded by big mountains that are in the clouds half the time. there was supposed to be some big storm today and yesterday but nothing has happened yet so well see. this area is pretty civilized, its a pretty big city that im in here. I went to wal,art today! it was the biggest store that ive been inside of in honduras. it was nice to actually have a selection haha. so my companions so far... elder hafoka in the mtc, then e. guadarrama, e vera, in ocotillo, then in tela i had elder baede and elder sanchez. here so far i have elder gessel . hes from california and a super chill guy. we get along good but i need to take more  responsibilty for things. im working on it. this ward here is huge and its a big adjusment here from being one of the main supports in a branch to being just like normal missionaries as it would be in the states. its kinda scary because the leaders are on top of us pretty good but also good because they want to work with us. ward consel felt like we were thrown in a shark tank haha. but its ok.sounds like a lot of things as always from home i hope everything works out. i am a little sad to miss his wedding but ill be home before too long. thats so funnny about grandpa! as long as the neighbors arent complaining let him build away haha.  in tela, no that family has not bveen married yet . the mother in law wouldnt let her leave the baby or travel with it so its at a standstill now. but one of the other invetigators i was working with finally accepted a baptism date!  i was able to watch her change her life in the 6 months we were visiting and its great to finally have her baptized. her name is yadelin, shes the daughter of my convert Jose! here we have 2 baptisms this week, from an recently reactivated family. the work here is a litttle tougher but well see what this area has in store for me. love you mom. oh and we have a mouse in our house. today i bopught a ton of cleaning supplies and some mouse glue traps so i hope we can cath it.  it ate some of my food and i was very upset!
only have 1 pic today, the clouds were covering the mountains in the background. im not going to carry around my camera here because its a little more dangerous in some places. but supposedly they know that were missionaries and what we do.  i dont think ill have any problems though and im always on my gaurd. love you mom!

August 28:
hey dad. good week. its been a very long week haha. thats funny about the neighbors, thats how it is with just about everyone we teach. were working with 2 couples right now to hopefully get them baptized by the end of september. marriage is very complicated here. this area is a little more dangerous than my others, but im doing what i can to stay as safe as possible. the water goes out a lot here so we keep extra in a garbage bin in the shower.  its been very busy  but good.  we had a 2 baptisms yesterday, also 1 lady from my old area was baptized yesterday, with 2 more coming this week. even though i wont be there for there baptisms it was amazing to teach them and watch them turn their lives around. love you dad hope things stay good for you!

Re: Random Crazy as usual

Mon 8/28, 3:53 PM
hi mom sounds like a busy week as always. pretty good week here, my comp went to san pedro to do his residency stuff so i was left for a day with my old companion elder baede!  it was fun and he showed me a cool new way to teach one of the princiles that is usually taught weaker amongst missionaries than it should be. but he showed me some cool things. and scriptures to help. really ive been focusing a lot more on my studies lately since now i  need to be the one who should know most of the things. its helped me a lot but theres still a lot that i need to keep studying. ive been studying baptism, prophets, a lot of stuff from  the plan of salvation, with a lot of scriptures. what i want to do is find the scripture that supports every line in th pamphlets we hand out. it will be a lot of work but will help me learn and understand more. we had 2 baptisms, of 2 kids. the missionarys found them a few weeks ago. its a member whop went inactive, but now he comes every week and even went out with us last week on an activity we had to visit the less actives. hes super cool and now were trying to visit with his extended family who all live close.  basically with the spirirt its mainly been smaller things, just things to say during a lesson. this past week i had the impression to fill up a trash can we keep in the shower for when the water goes out, but i didnt do it and we didnt have water for 3 days haha. its a learning process but im always trying to act on them when i get them. i always end up regretting when i dont.
turns out we dont have a mouse, we have a squirrrel thats been coming in our house. today i bought some rat glue traps, since it was able to pull itself off the mouse glue traps. if these dont work im just going to buy poison next week, its super gross having this thing visiting our house.love you mom! today i withdrew 100, just so you know it was me. 
one thing if you could buy for me and put it in nthe next box, a book called day of defense. basically its a book where 2 missionaries get togethr and prove against like 20 other ministers the truth of our religion in a courtroom. i started reading it with my other comp but didnt have time. it has lots of good scriptures to help with different things people might approach us about

 anyways love you mom! i hope dallin has a good birthday, i s ent him a email. love you mom have a great week!

July in Tela- Pioneer Day

July 2:

hi mom, it was a good week this week. . i dont have transfers this week, im staying with my companion for the 3rd transfer together. hes a good guy, im just frustrated with his time managment a lot. other than that it was a decent week, we got lots of stuff done and met lots of prepared people. my golden convert jose is now our mission leader of the branch! super exciting for him. i miss you guys but there is a lot of potencial here that i want to help with.love you mom

hi mom, sorry i couldnt write yesterday, we were in the other city all day and then another missionary he had some medical trouble that went to help with. so it was a fun day. ill read your email now, just wanted you to know im still alive
rom: Joshua Brian Gardner <gardner.joshua@myldsmail.net>
Date: Tue, Jul 11, 2017 at 9:14 AM
Subject: Re: Letter from Dad 7/9/17
To: Wesley Gardner <wesleydgardner@gmail.com>

hi dad, it was a good week. things are going good. thanks for the help and for your words dad. im excited to know where brennen is going to go, i was hoping it would have come but thats ok. thats cool that he was prdained! ive pretty much stopped worrying about my tools, mainly because i remember when i first started working that you offered to let me use yours. i know ive made the tool thing a bigger deal than it really is. thanks for your example to me in being generous and kind, he wont be using them for too long anyways. I wrote grandma. hmm well i was going to write a general email but i think ill just write the things to you.

so remember Jose my golden investigator/convert? so he was called as our mission leader last week! weve been working with his children he has 2 that live with him and then others.they have some problems with relationships, they ned to get married or seperated basically, both of them.  So his daughter, yadelin, got her answer about the church and has been coming to church! her boyfreind said he would rather commit suicide than get married with her, so basically they just need to stay seperated. of course they have a daughter which comlicates things. but she is getting ready to be baptized. 
Then he has a son, Eli. he kind of walks with a rough crowd and said that he thinks its too hard to get baptized and try to live the gospel, and that its a very serious covenant with god. he has not recieved his answer yet, mainly cause he hasnt asked. but his girlfriend( they also have a son together) we challenged her  in one of the visits to ask right now about the church in prayer. she said her prayer, then just put her hands to her face and looked at us with tears in her eyes. it was so cool! they dont want to get married either.
 so jose has another daughter  that weve been trying to teach but she lives in another house. this week we were teaching all of them, about baptism to try and commit them to a date. we told them we knew they would be ready by the 29 for baptism. the discussion was going great, until this lady started talking about how they arent ready for baptism and they wont be prepared for this date. she gave a huge rant about it. the spirit just quickly fled when she was talking. it was very frustrating, because ive seen the prgoress they have  made and know that they can be ready! more than anything its that she planted doubt in their mind. my comp just gave a scripture from the bible and tld her that she cant judge if they are or arent ready, that baptism is a step of faith. i know they can do it, because theyve recieved answers to their prayers! they have the faith necessary! theres a lot of things i wanted to say to her but as a missionary theres a lot of times where you just shouldnt say anything. so now basically weve left it in their hands.. they know what they need to do and we are just hoping they will do it and ignore the influence of their sister.

so this is just one of the things that happened this week. love you dad things are going pretty great out here. i miss you and love you! 
also if you could share these things with mom and the fam since its a lot of work to write it haha.
heres a cool picture that i drew this week

our mission mom in this branch gave me a little spinner thing to help with anxiety, ive been rubbing the sides of my shirts and its been wearing them out. shes also going to help me fix my shirts so i dont have to buy new ones.shes such a sweet lady. we got a lot of plans for what will probably be my last transfer in this area. were making shirts as a zone, and also trying todo a "white night" where all the convert baptisms for our stake will be at the same place, with our mission president there! it will be super cool if it works out. a very rare oppertunity.
love you dad!

To Ben:  Jul 17
yes bruh it is still hot sometimes! it has been raining alot here lately. bruh i hope you had a good birthday bru! and that you liked my letter! love you too bruh! have a gud one!

On Tue, Jul 11, 2017 at 10:41 AM, Nicole Gardner <wesandnicole@hotmail.com> wrote:

Hi Elder Josh,
I got your letter and I'm going to open it on my birthday.  Thank you.  
Is it still hot there?  There were really cool lightning storms here last night.  Also crazy thunder.  We watched out the window.
I'm going into 6th grade.  I can't wait for my birthday!
I love you!
July 17:  hey dad wow iowa! not what i was expecting but it will be great for him. nov 15! woot! and yeah 10 months here!which is almost 11, which is almost halfway! i got a lot of hope for this transfer, hoping for some miracles for the people here. we have seen a lot already! ive been working on dong my excersize here too, i miss my weights haha. we have nothing here  just bodyweight stuff. haha for my comps birthday his dad told him that he had to invite me to lunch. so after we had interviews on saterday, we went to pizza hut and he bought on of the biggest pizzas. basically i definetly gained a fw pounds with all of the birthday food we had haha. thanks dad, i hope i am having more of an impact than i see. love you dad

Re: Great week! Happy Pioneer Day my dear Pioneer!My Sweet Elder Joshy,

Lots happened this week and I hope you are ready for the blessings!  I talked in church today on being Born Again and was told it went well.  I never know quite what I'll say and I cut it from 12 pages to 6 and then about 5 when I gave it. I talked about how we can change our hearts and I'll attach a copy of my little (haha) talk in another email for you if you have time ever to read it.   I told a few ancestor stories of" I Was There" and Emma and Edward Payne since tomorrow is the 24th - Pioneer Day.  I wasn't near as nervous as for singing but still it was crazy!  

Jarom was asked from the pulpit to come give his testimony (which causes great anxiety for him but I almost felt like it would happen since Bishop is gone on vacation and Bro Veals who loves Jarom and was his Home Teaching companion for a few years was conducting- did you know that Jarom is partners with Grandpa now and Brennen is with Dad) and he shared a testimony of prayer from his camp this week.  He said they were at the hardest part of the hike on Friday pretty high, I think 11,520’ and there was a lightning storm and they had to quickly hike to safer ground.  He said a prayer that he could make it because he was nervous but also so sore and tired and he said he felt better and was able to finish.  
Oh that Jarom!!  What a week for him! It was incredible!  I'm sure you relate because of Philmont!  He said the views were amazing and he was pretty fed up with Chad's lack of help and complaints as a tent partner.  He only saw a bear coming home on the train and right after they hiked one part a guy was attacked by a moose and his arm was beat up pretty bad and his dog killed.  Another guy not with them was attacked by a porcupine but our little Teacher group with many Mommas and boys praying for them were safe all week.  Very wet and cold and tired but safe!  It is so good to have him home again!  I worried and prayed all week.  (Just like when any of my boys go away) He did have a bad headache day and took a few Cokes to help and it did.  He also was pretty sick to stomach and threw up 2nd day out and didn't eat much the rest of the week.  Good thing his appetite is back now but his stomach still hurts.  He made hashbrowns, bacon and eggs for his breakfast this morning:)  Hungry again!  Jarom can get his permit this week and has to complete papers for Eagle project still with Save the Family.

Ben had the week of his life!  We surprised him with his gift from Alex to actually FLY A PLANE!  He was woken up early Friday morning and taken to work with Dad and then dropped off at Chandler airport where he thought he was just looking at planes.  He got to actually fly once in the air and has so many stories and was so excited!  I'm taking him to visit Alex this week at the nursery before school starts next week for Combs.  He also got his Arrow of Light on Tuesday and it was awesome!  Grandma did so much to help him she even came.  IT was nice and hot outside but the sun was going down and they did have a fire with color flames.  Not the same as the flaming arrow shoot but still cool and his actual arrow board is great!  On to Boy Scouts we go!

Brookly got her license on Thursday!!!  Yay!! She had a stressful trip there and a few unexpected happenings and then couldn't park once there so I was worried but with her and I praying hard she got it and will do fine now!  Brennen will teach her the truck since I'm not great at it:)  She starts school THIS Tuesday and is not excited!  She was put in the same English teacher that was the Comma Nazi and we requested a change and got it so we felt blessed there!  

Brennen went to the lake after work with Priests this week and had a great time!  He accepted his mission call and is working on all the stuff for that!  We did baptisms yesterday and he'll go through temple after he gets the next interviews in August sometime.  ASU deferment is stressful and hopefully works out.  We had the wrong form and the proof we sent was too big file.  Of course, right?  We redid that tonight and hope it goes through tomorrow.  

August 13th is the Tucson Temple Dedication so we don't have sacrament that day and even Ben gets to go!  So cool!  


I pray for you daily and have really felt the spirit as I've worked to do all the Lord has asked the last few weeks.  I feel I need blessings so I'm doing all I can.  I loved really studying for my talk and wish I could motivate myself to do more like that each week.  What are you studying now?  By topic?  By Preach my Gospel lesson?  Let's study together.  Tell me what you are doing this week and I'll study it with you. I hope you are feeling our love and support in all you do and that you are growing in the gospel.  You are amazing!
What was the most interesting, spiritual and challenging thing this week?

I love you!

From: Joshua Brian Gardner <gardner.joshua@myldsmail.net>
Sent: Monday, July 24, 2017 3:57:37 PM
To: Nicole Gardner
Subject: Re: Great week! Happy Pioneer Day my dear Pioneer!
hi mom, pretty good week this week. a lot happened. maybe ill write a group email since not many people wrote me todo and explain a little. weve been having lots of challenges. lots of our investigators have dropped on us and it seems like everything that could go wrong has been. but despite this i still have the joy from knowing im trying my best and after that its out of my hands.
so for studying right now im doing the first chaoter of preach my gospel, also in mosiah 14 or around there, also reading in psalms like 60, and then like the third talk in general conference womens session. i kinda just study on whatever i feel like at the moment, and then by topic as things come up in the week that i need to know more of. i will be studying the authority to use the preisthood and why its important. weve had a lot of questions about it lately and i have realized i dont really know the importance of authority. so yep. been a good week though despite the challenges, it feels good to be tested, like a deep satisfaction even though its hard. im glad things are going well with the fam, sorry to hear about dallin, who knows how things will work out some times. love you mom!

hey dad! good week, busy week. lots of challenges but also we have seen the hand of the lord in our work here and it is worth it even though its so hard. thats cool with your work,  go dad! haha im scared to let brookly drive the surburban too. haha  mom told me brennen is going to teach her how to use the truck... haha good luck! im glad jarom had a great time in colorado, definlty lifelong memories. thats funny he was with chad, i was also tent buddys with alex. no problems there though! something that was sad this week, is it was joses first time in branch counsel, and he had to see firsthand just how weak this branch is right now. he told us that he didnt say anything because hes new, but hes going to  start saying things about changes that need to be made. just sad that a brand new convert knows how things should be more that the people who have been runnning it for a while.  i was reflecting on how i can better streghten this branch in the short time i have left. but we have been well blessed  even though its been very challenging here. i love you dad, things are really going great despite the hardships.

happy pioneer day everybody. things have been going pretty good here. Weve had lots of challenges in this area the past month. everything from the branch problems to solid investigators dropping. Basically everything that has had the potencial to go wrong has. But despite this, we have seen so many blessings here. It is deeply satisfying to know that you have given your all. Let the challenges come, for I will continue to trust in the Lord! I feel a little like Paul, who said this
We are troubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in despair;
Persecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not destroyed;
Even through all our trials we have plenty of joy in the lords work, and every thing we have gone through has just made the experience in this area better. Opposition in all things right? But anyways right now we have a family that we are teaching  and they want to get married and baptized. we planned the past weekend an event to help them  raise the funds for the papers! on the morning of, we bought all the food and called them up to coordinate when they could come make it. We made pastelitos, which is a fried tortilla with a meat stuffing. But anyways we call them up, and they say, shoot, were in the hospital right now, shes gone into labor! Now this really threw us off, so after a few frantic calls to the relief society sisters, one of them was able to help us! we passed all the ingrediants to prepare to cook them that night. Then we went and made 5 gallons of natural orange juice. now we had planned to do lemonade and orange juice, but our coup[le was going to provide the lemos. so we bought 30 oranges thinking that would be good. 30 oranges didnt go very far when we needed 5 gallons, so we ended up just adding a bunch of tang to it haha. we had no juicer and just used the spine of a knife to juice them, so there was plenty of seeds and pulp in it! IN the end somehow we worked through every problem that came up and ended up making about half the funds needed for them. As of yesterday when we visited them at the hospital she was still in labor, we havent been able to get ahold of them yet today but im sure everything has worked out fine. Everything always turns out fine when we have faith!
For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.th.
I hope you all enjoy your pioneer day and spread your light to all the world.
 Elder Gardner

July 31:
hmm well i know theres thinhgs io want but at the moment knothing comes to mind. really the shirts would be the most help. really i just like getting letters the most, and also  for candy if you could send some chocolate things! i miss it. but i think im doing good otherwise... i can never remember. but i make do with the things i have just fine. thanks!

hi dad. another good week. i mainly told mom  but we have a new thing we use to find new investigators. basically we leave a blessing in just anyones house after founding out about them, then we return within 2 days to start teaching. i have a lot of faith in this and know i will see miracles. hmm so with our investigators... we got the guys papers done for marriage, now we just need his wife to go to the city where she was born to get hers done. but they didnt come to church so its possible they will not be able to fget baptized before i leave but im really hoping so. sounds like your work is going good, thats exciting that you are in that position. love you dad have a great week
On Mon, Jul 31, 2017 at 5:47 PM, Joshua Brian Gardner <gardner.joshua@myldsmail.net> wrote:
wow what a week. that makes me really sad about coach butler, i was really looking forward to getting together with him with all my buds after. thats crazy about shad too, who knows what can happen. hmm really the only way to protect your testimony isto protect it by keeping it growing. anyways was a good week this week. we hyad our conference with president and he rolled out a new inicitiative to heklp us find news. its called the harvest! basically we go to a house where the spirit guides, and tell the people there that we are representatives of jesus christ and that were here leave leave a blessing on the house. then we go in,find out some basic needs, kneel and leave the blessing , then leave with an appointment for within n the next 2 days. we havent been able to try it yet, been very busy pasty 2 days with lots of travel. but i know it will create many amazing experiences. we have already heard of lots of cool ones that have  happened. we went to lancetilla again, this time we had the whole zone and we paid for a guide to show us. we leanred a lot of cool stuff and got to taste a lot of different fruit, including a miracle fruit that changes your taste buds for a while. basically it makes everything taste a lot sweeter. it was super cool and i want to grow a tree haha. anyways things are going good otherwise. love you mom
dangerous plants! they showed us one, that if you ate the fruit you would die within 3 minutes. pretty cool! the fruit was not in season unfortunately

June was hard

Elder Gardner with beautiful Tela sunset.  Companion made it difficult to get pictures during this time.
Elder Gardner really struggled this month with feeling inaduquate and was in contact with the Mission President who helped. Here's a few excerpts that we have, the emails to Nicole were lost.

June 4th:  hey dad, sound like fun at clear creek, i miss that place. sounds like you will have fun at hawaii, you and mom deserve some nice vacation time. my stomach is fine now, ive been taking omeprazole and its working great. we should have a baptism this week of Caridad! hes just the sweetest old guy. he gets confused pretty easy but he knows the things he needs to. hes great though and is always asking us to go visit his neighbors. hes a cool guy. thats cool brennen is working for joe, he will enjoy that and learn a lot. love you dad have fun on your vacation!

June 12: hey dad, this week was kinda rough, our baptism fell through and ive been a little stressed. my mission president kind of hit me with a machete of words a little , but its ok because the lord chastens whom he loves.  im glad your enjoying hawaii, thats cool you went snorkeling! but yeah ive been working to try and be better . its not easy but i am seeing a lot of blessings. were hoping this week thebaptism will come through. well just see though. i love you dad, enjoy your vacation!
To everyone on June 12-Still Alive:  enjoy my drawing of 2 nephi 26 22, satan slowly lures us with a flaxen cord.
we might not even realize it but i invite you all to take a look at what things might be your flaxen cord and change them. cut the cords by which ye are bound!  true, my artistic abilities are of a 2 year old, but i think it shows the message well. Anyways weve been working hard here, just too much stuff to do. our baptism fell at the last minute this past saterday, we went to pick him up and after preparing everything, and he said he wasnt feeling well. hopefully this week! theres lots of challenges here but we are working through them one by one.
Elder Gardner🕵

June 19:  Thanks dad. i do enjoy drawing, and ive also been writing like a first person accounts of stories from the scriptures. i think theyve turned out super awesome, and they are a great way to help me relax . also i listen to the mp3 player alot and that helps. i guess i used strong terminology, we say machete or chopiar in spanish whenever like we get on top of someone to live one of the commandment or really anything. really he just gave me the bare truth. pres wants the best for me, he did build me up to . dont worry dad im doing pretty good. i told mom about some things i learned this past week that have really helped me and will help. i dont have to be perfect, just the best that i can be without comparing myself to anyone else. sometimes it gets hard but i know its for the best. i think im at kind of the turning point of my mission where i feel like im kind of getting over myself and just trying to do the best i can. i love you dad, thanks for your concern. everything is good, todo tranquilo, todo derangulo in garifuna which is the language of the african people here. love you dad, things are going good. one question which i hate to ask but its been killing me to know... is brennen using my tools? id hate to say no if he is since i understand hes just working for his mission and doesnt have money or really a reason to buy his own, but  ...  im kind of crazy about my tools haha. i hope hes been enjoying work.
love you dad!

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

What's New 5/29/17 Memorial Day

Gotta stay fresh in your minds so here's another email. Well right now we have some pretty good investigators. One is this guy who has 75 years. His name is Charidad! He has this massive tumor on his neck and other some ones on his arms and different  places. But hes a super sweet guy and is always asking us when were coming back and when we have church again. Hes a little bit slower but is always so happy. He lives on less than $100 a month.
Another guy we have right now is Luis! We met him in a gas station here. He actually gave us a self reference. Turns out he lived in New York for a while and went to our church for 2 years! Never was baptized. Hes just scared of making a covenant with God, but if you have enough knowledge to be scared of doing it... You'd better do it. Anyways we taught him the plan of salvation and he has a ton of great questions! All he has to do is pray and I know he will receive the testimony hes looking for. He has some huge challenges that need to be overcome first, but he is humble enough to do it. Hes such a cool guy. 
These are just 2 of the amazing people were teaching right now. Anyways other than that  just been working here. another good week here in Tela.
Shout out to my cousins who got their mission calls recently Jessica to London and Jordan to Hawaii! You guys are awesome!
Love 💟
Elder Gardner

Wow! thats a lot of stuff that happened this week. thats awesome Brennen got offered a job just by his handshake, concrete is something i wanted to learn. but either way both are great options and he will learn a ton. hard work but good skills to know. yeah its true bro palmer has a lot of employees right now, but Ryans trying to get hired by one of the police departments so who knows. Thats crazy Dallin came home, but good that he doesnt have to deal with all the stress. congrats Jordan! ill do a shout out for them.
this week ive been pretty sick, i have something with my stomach. i wasnt able to eat a lot, i always feel pretty feel, basically my stomach wont process the food into my intestines if i dont take pepto bismal. But the nurse is one of the senior couple and im going to talk to her tomorrow to see what she thinks, and what i should do.its been kind of scary really. but other than that ive been doing not too bad! love you mom!

nice dad! sounds busy. for lessons if you want more participation, what i did is just split up the sections in the manual, 3 or 4 people have each section read it and discuss it, then we come together after a time and go through each section. we had a ton of participation when i did it like that. love you dad sounds like a lot of fun things coming up!

Week of Changes 5/22/17

Well this week has been very interesting! one of the elders in the other branch here did something dumb and got sent home. So the other elder from that branch has been with us in a trio! its been pretty fun. He has been called as a zone leader in a different zone and  leaves on wednesday. its been interesting.  me and my companion will be staying here for another transfer. we still have a lot to do and not enough time! one thing i miss is real hamburgers, they have an interpretation of a hamburger here but it is very far from a true hamburger. as i was thinking about my hamburger problem, i came to a conclusion that this applies to the gospel. but how? the hamburgers here, from a glimpse appear to be all they should, and that you imagine would be. but as you take the first bite, you realize several things.. 
1 theres not enough meat on it, and they flavor is not what you expect. often times in our lives we think we have reached perfection, only to find out the hard way that imperfection is an easier goal. but it need not be! through the gospel we all can reach our level of perfection, through Jesus Christ. This hamburger, in this life may not be able to fulfil its level of tasteness that it deserves, but someday yes. other sidenote, maybe it might just be us that needs to change our perspective. in the meanwhile, all we can do is add more ketchup. 
2. well this one is more of an extension of the first problem, but here we go. its an insufficient bread ratio. there is twice the amount of bread than is necessary. in a sense, the bun is trying to make it appear more holy than it actually is. in our lives, often we say the words, but forget about the actual doing, which is more important than the words part. let us always remember to live the gospel and not just go through the motions, so that our bread level is something that the people can appreciate, and not just have to choke down. 
3..yeah theres definitely more, but ill leave the rest of this sermon for a different day haha. sometimes its fun to make examples out of strange things.
anyways heres a few photos from this week, hope yall have a good week. things are going fast here.
Elder Gardner

sounds crazy mom! tell Jarom not to worry, just learn what to do if you see a bear. I was within 30 feet of one at Philmont well actually there was one that walked right outside my tent., just stay calm and dont scare it, they usually are more scared of us. but  that sounds like a lot of fun! love you mom, i honestly dont remember a lot of what happened this week but i sent my other email with the main news. pretty interesting week for sure!  heres a story though that no one knows. so we were in the other elders house after he left, i was looking through some papers when i hear a thud.  i thought, what they heck would be in here that would that sound? so then i looked, and i found a smartphone!! i started freaking out, but very quietly. no one is allowed to have that, and it was very well hidden. i thought about the options i had and concluded the following.1 i can take it, and just keep it under lock for when i get home. or 2 pretend i never saw it and put it back. or 3  call president and let him know. the spirit told me to first talk to Elder Carballo to figure out whose it was. so at this point no one knew that i had found it.  so i ask elder Carballo if I can talk to him for a minute . i bring him into a different room and tell him i just found something in your house, and im going to call president right now about it. do you have anything you shouldnt? he had no idea what i was talking about so i showed him the phone.   hes a good guy so i believed him when he said its not his.  then i called president, told him i found a smartphone. he was super sad to hear that the elder he just sent home also had a smartphone. he told me to just hold onto it until interviews and give it to him then. so that was interesting thing that happened this week! right now only 2 people know i have it, and im going to keep it that way so that other missionaries dont try to take it from me., theres a lot that would try to buy it off me i know. but yeah that gave me a huge rush when i found it! until interviews, it is hidden deep within my suitcase, where it will stay. i aint touching that thing ! love you mom have a good week!

Happy Mother's Day 5/15/17

Howdy y'all
 hope everyone had a nice mothers day, it was nice to talk to the fam for a little.. we had a busy week this week, we put together  a movie night for a missionary activity. we showed meet the mormons and had popcorn and soda.  we didnt have a lot of support from the branch, but somehow we got it all put together. haha our budget was less than $30. it was a pretty good success, we didnt have as many people as we had hoped but the word will spread for the next one we do.  i spent 4 hours cooking popcorn kernels in a little camping pot that we have, actually the only pot we have. but my popcorn was a huge hit and my comp said that i have the gift of popcorn haha. not exactly a spiritual gift, but if my popcorn brings souls to christ ill make it with gusto. putting everything together and figuring out all the details took up a lot of our time this week but in the end it was worth it and we have a few new investigators. 
other than that not to much has happened, weve just been trying to stay on top of all the work we have to do. but its been great​​! 
Elder Gardner

thanks dad! it was great to see you guys and share the same jokes that we had before haha! yeah weve been trying to work with members more, but a new rule just came out that we cant do splits with priests anymore. so its just hard to get 2 people at the same time who live close enough together that its not a huge hassle. but yeah we are working on it. sounds like it was a nice mothers day. love you dad, thanks for all your support!