The Week of the Dead (Halloween) November 4, 2013

¡Buenas tardes todos!
It was interesting to see the Day of the Dead here in Mexico this week.  The traditional celebration of honoring the dead has merged with our ‘modern’ Halloween.  All day Thursday through Saturday last week, people could be seen heading to the Pantheon (the cemetery) to honor their family and friends who have passed on.  Vendors set up on the avenue in front of the entrance to the Pantheon selling flower arrangements in various shapes and sizes, including arrangements in the shape of the cross.
On the other end of the ‘celebration spectrum’, kids with their parents were seen basically all day Friday (yes, Friday) trick-or-treating in the market and at all of the shops along the main avenues.  It is safer to go trick-or-treating at the shops and businesses than in the neighborhoods, but it sure does clog up the avenues with kids.  Just as in the United States, costumes of all types were to be seen here.
Because of Halloween, we were in our house by 7:30 Thursday and by 8:00 Friday.  Despite having to work around the holiday this week, our work continues to improve here.  We have met a few new people this week that we hope to start teaching this next week.  The redividing of our area is definitely providing us with more work.  Unfortunately, basically nobody attended our Ward Mission activity Saturday, and it has been difficult to involve the members here in missionary work in general, but we continue to do our best and think of ways to help involve the members.  Friday, we went to a conference at the Temple, and we met in the old Mexico City MTC instead of the Institute building.  President Anaya talked to us about what we can do to improve how we work with the members, and so we hope to see more involvement with putting in action his suggestions.  Despite the setback of the activity, Elder Alfaro and I continue to see improvement week to week.
Today, we went to a Zone Activity where we played soccer and then ordered Dominoes Pizza.  Yes, there is Dominoes here in Mexico.  The pizza isn’t as good here, and I have heard that McDonnald’s isn’t as good here either.  But, the activity was fun, so all is well!  I do have a picture of our Zone at the activity, but I won’t be able to send it this week because I got stuck with a computer that doesn’t want to read my camera’s card… so I’ll have to send it next week.
Well, that’s it for this week.  I am glad to hear that all is well (besides the colds).  Keep moving forward in the strength of the Lord!
Elder Tyler Gardner

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