Friday, 22 July 2016

He's home!!!!!!

     Dawson returned home Tuesday, July 19th, 2016 at 5:07 pm at the Lethbridge Airport. He left Cancun at 6 am, flew to Dallas, then to Calgary, then to Lethbridge. He was greeted by this parents, sisters, Strate and French grandparents. Bryce & Cindy and their two youngest. Allison and her three children (Kevin will be down this weekend). Rhonda & Scott with Ali. Along with camera men and Dawson's two good friends Connor Rango Wright and Carter Hansen.
     We had posters, maracas and lots of cheering to welcome Dawson as he came through the doors. After all the hugs were done, we went to Rhonda and Scott's for a BBQ. At 6:30 pm we left to get Dawson to President Randy Wilde's home in Welling for him to get released. It was a spiritual, but tough moment for Dawson as he had to take his name tag off. We stopped at the Blue Goose on the way home and he got a snow bob.
     He are some pictures from the event, I'm sure more will be added from a busy week as he sees more friends and family.


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Monday, 11 July 2016

My last letter

     Hello Everyone,

     ¡¡Estoy bien muerto!! 

     This is my last week in the mission field...😭 how very sad to think that! 
     Therefore, this will probably be my last letter. So I will try to make it good! 
     I have learned so much in these two short years as a missionary. I can definitely say that my time here has been very well spent. Lots of people have asked me if its really worth it to serve a full time mission. If its worth sacrificing two years of our lives to serve in a foreign land, speaking a foreign language, talking with utter strangers about God, and all of the other challenges and difficulties that arise. Is it all worth it? I want to say to you all that it is worth it. Every single year, month, week, day, minute, and second is worth it. Its not easy, but its definitely worth it. I have been able to draw closer to my Saviour than ever before and have learned countless things about him and his restores gospel (those of you who are returned missionaries know what I´m talking about). There is honestly no other experience that competes with the mission. I would not trade it for 1 billion dollars. No amount of money, or other worldly riches can amount to the blessings that one receives. I have seen these blessings in my personal and family life. I love this work and I am grateful that I still have one week left to wear this name tag to represent Christ and his church. 
     I want all of you to know how much I truly love you. I´m sure that you are all annoyed because I always say that in my letters. However I say it because its true! I have learned that love truly does conquer all! That love is charity, which is the pure love of Christ. It doesn´t matter how hard someone is, or how much we get rejected, spit upon, or hated for the name of Christ. Love is the greatest antidote for all! I have seen people with the hardest hearts in the world, and how the Saviours love has softened them. 
     Thanks for reading all of my letters throughout these two years, I hope that they weren´t too boring! I´m not very good at writing but hey I try! 
     May we all press forward with steadfastness in Christ until the end. And never forsake his gospel or his church. I invite you all to read a chapter from the book of mormon this week. Moroni 7 which talks about charity and many other wonderful things. This chapter has changed my life and I know that it will change yours. 

     For the last time, thank you all and have a wonderful week in the work of salvation!

        Love,

            Elder Strate 


Monday, 4 July 2016

New Mission President

Hello Everyone,

This week has been good. We got to know our new Mission President and his wife, the Reynoso family! They are so awesome. We had a meeting with them in Cancun on Wednesday and it was wonderful. They have a very strong spirit about them and I know that they were called by God to guide this mission!
They talked about some very basic things/rules as missionaries. Like obedience, knowing how to teach, etc. It was great. He compared the mission rules to a lighthouse. That when we are "out at sea" the lighthouse will guide and protect us always. However if we choose to not follow the light and go where we want, we can get lost and maybe even die at sea. I feel like this principle not only applies to us as missionaries, but to all members of the church. Obedience is the first law in heaven for a reason! Without out it we would all surely be lost.
Also, this morning my companion and I went to the Hacienda Mundaca. He hadn´t been there yet so we went and explored a bit. Its really beautiful there and lots of things to see! Let´s just say that as we were walking through the forest, I saw some cool light coming through the trees.

Only 2 weeks left....man I can´t believe it. Going to have to work extra hard to finish strong! Thanks for all the support and love. Hope you are all having a great summer and may the spirit be with you all!!

Love,

Elder Strate

                               My Comp - Elder Moreno 



Monday, 27 June 2016

Visit with a 70

Hello Everyone,

      Had a good week. We found one new investigator this week. His name is Delmar (18years old) and his brother Audel is a member. We had a great talk with him on Saturday and he committed to get baptized on July 16th! He was also able to go to church yesterday! It was great. He will probably be my last baptism, unless we miraculously find someone else between now and then. I think we can!
 
     Friday was a pretty sweet day. A Seventy came to talk to us, Elder Ortiz. It was awesome! He talked to us for about 2 hours and it was great. He talked about how we need to keep being disciples of Christ even after our missions. For the rest of our lives...😨 All I can say is that I will try my very best to do so! He also talked about how we can establish the mission more plainly (Alma 4:4). By first starting with self improvement, then as a companionship, then as a mission. He is very inspired and I learned a lot. 
 
     So President and Sister Kirkham are leaving tomorrow...I will miss them dearly! They are so amazing and have done so much for this mission and for me. They will always hold a special place in my heart πŸ˜„  So President and Sister Reynoso will be arriving tomorrow. They are from Veracruz and I am so excited to get to know them! 
 
     So thats what happened this week. Thanks for reading and may you all have a great week! 

     Love,
        Elder Strate     

Monday, 20 June 2016

Loving it here - 29 days left

      Hello Everyone, 

      This week was pretty good. First of all...
      Happy Father´s Day all you fathers out there! I hope that you had a wonderful day yesterday with all your families and such. I just want to make a shout out to my dad Ron Strate! Because of all the dads out there, he is the best. Just saying. Not to make anyone else feel bad but he is the best! He has done so much for me that I honestly cannot remember it all (sorry Dad). He has always been there for me when I've needed it most and always been a great example as a worthy priesthood holder in God´s Church. Thanks for everything Dad I love you soo much! Ok back to the mission now...πŸ˜‰
   
      We had a special meeting with President Kirkham and the rest of the Zone. In two weeks he and Sister Kirkham will be leaving, so we had one last meeting/party with a piΓ±ata and everything! 
      We also had interviews from President and it was amazing. He gave me a blessing too, and wow. It was a blessing unlike any other that I have ever received! It was almost like a patriarchal blessing! I think he has a gift of giving blessings. I´m not going to say what the whole blessing was, but I will say this. I will be called to serve the Lord again some day! Sweet!

      We have some baptismal dates scheduled for the coming weeks. This week we were able to visit a lot of less actives which was awesome. We even got the chance to talk with some  that rejected us before! Making progress! Its a lot of work but hey its worth it. The work of Salvation is the most important that there is. And I love it! Too bad thats its coming to an end in a few weeks...😭 
     Have a great week everyone and be safe. The Gospel is true and repentance is the key to happiness!!

      Love,

          Elder Strate


     P.S - If you haven´t read it already, read the conference talk called "The healing ointment of forgiveness"- Kevin R. Duncan from this April. Its wonderful!  


Monday, 13 June 2016

5 Weeks Left

Hello Everyone,

      This week was great!
      Last Monday, I got a call from an Investigator that I taught in Cozumel named Brayan. He was getting baptized this week and he wanted me to baptize him! How awesome is that!? So we got to travel back to Cozumel on Saturday to baptize him. It was a wonderful experience and I am so happy for Brayan. He will be a great member and one day he is going to be a missionary too! 
                                                        Elder Carlson, me, Bryan, and Elder Hart.
             Mauricio also got confirmed yesterday and I confirmed him. It was awesome. 
     So, we are allowed to wear hats and sunglasses now so...yep I bought some! Now I don´t need to wear sunscreen haha! I love revelation. 

     Also, some more less actives came to church yesterday which was great! Things are going good here on the Island and I can´t complain. My companion and I also went to the tortugranja again because he hadn´t been there. This time there were some sharks and manta rays! Pretty sweet. 

     Well, I have only got 5 weeks left until I come home. Wow, time sure flies by. I will definetly make the most of it! Thanks for all the love and support. Thats about I have for this week. Have a great week and keep the faith!

     Love,

           Elder Strate