Monday, December 26, 2016

EMAIL: WEEK 22 - "Merry Christmas"

WRITTEN 12/26/2016

(Written from mom)
We got a call on December 25th at 7am... Caller ID said Morristown New Jersey....  I answered
MOM: "Hello?"
ELDER: " HI, This is Elder Marz......  (mom screams....)
MOM: screaming, hollering, giddy with delight... "It's Evan... it's Evan!!!!!!! woohoooooooo"
ELDER:  "calling to confirm our appointment at 10:30 today?"
MOM: giggling and hardly able to contain my excitement.... "OF COURSE! ..."

The conversation went on for a min of two arranging the logistics or our FaceTime call later that day. Such an amazing highlight of our day.

I (mom) had prayed mightily that our call would be happy and full of joy. I had heard from so many how hard and sad the 1st call home is for the missionary and the family. I did not want there to be any sadness. I was afraid of that. I did not want that at all. I did not want him to cry, or us to cry. The Lord answered my/our prayers. It was wonderful, amazing, happy and not sad... and was not sad for him.
This is what Elder Marz said to me today in his email to me.

" It was sooooo much fun! I did not have a hard time about it at all! It was so much fun! It was so nice to hear and see everyone!.....Talking to everyone was such a pick-me-up or like a recharge. I can't really describe the feelings I felt but I just felt so good, so warm."

Our call from Elder Marz perspective. Our immediate family and Tyler Weller and Mishawn Peacock per Evans request. 
The "CALL" from our perspective at home. SO happy. 

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

EMAIL: Week 21 - "Snow and Excited for Christmas"

WRITTEN Dec 19th, 2016

This week has been really good. We had breakfast as a zone at the mission home with the Taggart's. It was super fun. We also had the all mission conference in Morristown with the whole mission. Got to hang around elder Davis like all day, it was way fun. He's such a goof, I love him. 

I can't wait for Christmas! I got to break out the boots this week! They're perfect! Super comfy and warm! 
For Christmas we don't have a lot planned. I have two 40min FaceTime calls and we have a hour of church and then we have lunch at a members house.

I don't have a ton of time to write today. We've been playing a lot of ball but I can give you a better update on Sunday.
I can't wait for Sunday it's going to be so fun! 

Send me some pictures please! 

Elder Marz

EMAIL: Week 20 - "Baptism, Spiritually Fed & Spanish Fireside"

WRITTEN Dec 12th, 2016

Hey Families!

I'm doing super awesome week and I have just been spiritually fed over and over!
Pretty much this whole week was preparing for yesterday! We had a baptism yesterday!
We've been waiting for them to get married but they were waiting on some things and finally something happened and they got married on Saturday and Santos (the only non-member in the fam) got baptized on Sunday. We knew it was gonna happen it was just a matter of time but I'm super happy that I was given the opportunity to baptize Santos. Such a prepared guy. Has an awesome testimony and is going to affect this ward here in such a good way.

Other than the baptism on Sunday we were at the wedding on Saturday night and I needed to prepare a talk for church. My fist talk in sacrament meeting all in Spanish so that was quite an experience but it went really smoothly and it turns out I know and use a lot more Spanish than I thought I did! And after the talk and the baptism we had the Spanish fireside in Newark (like 30min away) till the rest of the night. I got to see elder Davis. It's always great when I get to see him. He's such a dork but I love him so much! I hope we get to be companions! I feel like every time I see him he gives me a pickmeup. Lots and lots of fun things that happened this week and even more fun stuff is planed for this week. 

Sorry it's not a whole lot but it was a super awesome week and we're trying to find more people to bring to the gospel. 

I can't wait for Christmas! What time(s) were you guys thinking for FaceTime/Skype? 

Thanks for all your prayers!

Elder Marz

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

EMAIL: WEEK 19 - "New Companion, Scheduled Baptism and #lighttheworld"

WRITTEN: December 6th, 2016

 Hey Family!
This week has been all sorts of fun. First set of new is that I got a new companion! Elder Johnson from Idaho. Pretty cool kid. We do share some common interests thought! He did a little FlyFishing and fly tying before the mission so that's pretty sweet! He is just one more transfer older than me so we are both relatively new. He's a super humorous guy so we get along alright so that's good.

This week has been pretty busy? I'm now leading out our area so it's been quite an adventure!
As you all know this week on Thursday it became a start of a new month December, the last month of this year. Also something super awesome started, the new church initiative #LIGHTtheWORLD. It's a super sweet opportunity to serve others and share the gospel. We've been out on the streets engaging the people to serve other people in even the smallest ways. Serving people is so much fun. One of the actives we did was going around our church building and picking up trash and cleaning up the streets. We invited over 200 people to come, and the whole ward to come and help but only one person came so we got to we got to change something to get the ward pumped. The ward here is pretty darn lazy and we only have a handful of members who are super converted and willing to help with the missionary work. We also helped a member paint their living room. Saturday we went around journal square (a place in jersey city where there are lots and lots of people) and we walked around with #LIGHTtheWORLD cards with comments written on the back and we went around giving them our and inviting others to do the same. Super fun little activity, hopefully we touched some hearts. We also wrote thank you notes to our parents and posted it on Facebook for the world to see:)

We had district meeting with all our new missionaries. I've been called to be assistant to he District leader? Not sure what exactly that means, never heard of that kind of calling before but it's a little interesting. At the end of the week everyone calls me for their numbers and then I total them up (with my super awesome math skills) and them send them to the zone leaders. 

Some awesome news it that we have a baptism next Sunday! His name is Santos and he's been waiting over a year to be baptized (had to wait to be married first). He's getting married on Saturday and then the baptism on Sunday. He asked me to baptize him and I can't wait!

Also some more awesome news is that's it's getting closer and close to Christmas which means closer and closer until we get to FaceTime eachother! Christmas is going to be so fun!

It's been super awesome this past week. It turns out that I know a lot more Spanish then I thought I did. Now that elder Jordan is gone I've had to talk a lot more haha. It's still a bit rusty but I'm working on it:)

Thanks so much for all your thoughts and prayers! Love you all! Onto next week:)

Elder Marz


I (mom) usually have a little bit of time to volley with Evan (ahem) Elder Marz, every Monday on his Prep Day. Sometimes more than others. It is such gift. I asked him a few questions (in BOLD) recently and thought his responses were so sweet I wanted to record them. 

What has been the biggest surprise as a missionary? 
The biggest surprise probably would be how fast time flies. The day after Christmas marks 5 months for me, that's crazy to think about.

What has been the hardest thing for you? ( I know you are amazing and near super human :) but I know you’ve got to have hard days or moments… what does that look like) 
Well I miss st George. I miss home. I miss the fam. I miss Tyler Weller. I miss going to the gym ever morning, I miss going on adventures, I miss Mishawn, I miss my fishing.
I miss a lot of things but I'm doing good. I don't think about those very often. I'll be back to those things faster than I know it.

What has been your biggest struggle? 
I don't really know? Language is still a barrier but other than that nothing else.

Do you feel like you were prepared well for the mission?
Yes I think so

Is there anything you would have done differently..? looking back?
I wish I went on splits more often and got to know the missionaries better.

What has been your biggest blessing so far? 
Probably my companion. We have never had any confrontations or anything like that. We've gotten along right from the begging.

What do you feel you have learned the most so far in your mission? 
Well a lot of Spanish and just really learning what exactly the church and the gospel is about.

What do you feel you need the most now? 
I don't really know? I don't think I really need anything specifically right now.

Elder Marz

EMAIL: WEEK 18 - "Thanksgiving Bowl & "Wrecked by Food"

WRITTEN: November 29th, 2016

Hey Family!
This was the last week of transfers and my last week of training, it's crazy how fast that went by! We have all been a little anxious to see what the changes were going to be. Turns out Elder Jordan is leaving me and going to Dover, bout 40 min away. I'm staying in Jersey city for at least 12 more weeks. My new companion will be Elder Johnson, this transfer with me will be his last in the mission, so that'll be a bit interesting.

Tuesday we had our last district meeting this transfer. Kinda sad now knowing that a lot of the zone is getting sent to different zones but hopefully I can see some of my close buds around. Elder Meek or district leader is super funny and such an awesome guy, he's getting sent off to another area:( Our area is getting four new missionaries today!

Thursday was a super fun filled day! Thanksgiving! We had a turkey bowl! Every year the mission has a turkey bowl and the whole mission gets together and and plays football for like 4 hours in the morning. Our zone got together with two other zones and played some FOOTBALL! It was super fun! President Taggart was on our team👍. After we went to the Union city chapel and our wonderful senior couple made an awesome thanksgiving lunch, I'm sure you all saw pictures on Facebook. It was soooo good. We had people from the ward come and make the famous nacho libre corn! It was like something I've never ever imagined but it was super yummy! After that we got wrecked with food. We had a meal appointment at 5:30 and another at 7:30. We were so full of food and so tired when we got home.

Friday the new church campaign launched! We were super excited for that! It's all about service this year, super fun to go around and share a message of Christ and how we can follow his example by serving others. People may not always accept our message about Christ but they may accept our message about serving others and that's a good step taken. As long as we get people to change for good means we are going in the right direction.

Sunday was awesome. Elder Jordan and I taught elders quorum. We talked about a talk given by President Monson. It was called Principles and promises, it talked about the principle of the word of wisdom and how there are promised blessings that we are given when we obey the word of wisdom. It was a really good lesson. Later on Sunday we tried by a less active we were told to go by from a member who lives upstairs. Didn't know if he was going to be home but he was. Super nice guy, invited us inside and we talked a little bit. We didn't want to take too much of their time but we just wanted to show them the Because of Him video. In reality as missionaries we shouldn't just be looking for numbers. We should be helping those who have fallen of the path and reminding them that they have made a scared covenant with God and they need to keep it. We invite them back to church so that they can feel the healing power of the atonement in their own lives by partaking of he sacrament. We could feel the spirit super strong in the lesson. At the end we were saying the prayer and he just got down on his knees. Pretty awesome experience. He knows he needs to come and he's going to come so we're crossing our fingers that he does!

That's how my weeks been in a little blur. Thanks for all your thanksgiving wishes! Love you guys!

Elder Marz

EMAIL: WEEK 17 - Angel Wings, Haircut and Fallish Air

EMAIL WRITTEN: November 21, 2016

Hey everyone!

Man this week was pretty fun. This Monday starts week 6 this transfer and then then after this week I'm done with training! Pretty exiting time!
Well let me tell you about my week:

Monday was pday as usual, nothing too exciting haha. Elder Jordan and I went to marshals and bought matching sweaters. They're super comfy. They're Field and Stream and the collar is fleece, so you already they're super warm.

Tuesday we had district meeting and it rained all day super hard! We visited a part member family and the whole family but the husband are members. They have two daughters: Luzmar- 7 and Flor-6. Flor loves to play! When we were over there she started this little craft. She was behind me the whole time and she wouldn't let me see what she was doing. Anyways like half an hour later her and her sister were laughing super hard and we had no idea why. Turns out that she made me angel wings, a halo, and a wand! She made me into an angel haha. Which a sweet family. The non-member husband has known missionaries for over 20 years and still hasn't been baptized so we are going to try to change that!

Wednesday seemed extra fally for some reason. We had a couple heavy lessons that day. One of our lessons we had bishops second counselor come with. It was for a member who has a son who is 14 and a daughter who is 11 with some serious mental health problems and it has become very burdensome for him  and the rest of the family but he hasn't really noticed. So we talked about service and how giving people the opportunity to serve is also giving yourself the opportunity to serve as well. We proposed the idea to put his daughter in a group home. Kind of a tough thing for him to do, but it's important. We are praying that he follows what's best for him and his family. I also got a haircut from the Martinez family. Brother Martinez fell asleep like five minutes into my haircut😂

Thursday we had service and weekly planing and we saw some of or members, not too much more than that.

Friday helped a member in the morning with putting all their stuff in black bags and boxes because they were getting a bed bug treatment and they had to bomb their apartment. We also tried by a lot of less actives and part member families. We also had coordination with our ward mission leader at his house. It was a very small apartment! I felt pretty claustrophobic haha. 
Saturday we went over to the same members house and helped them move all their stuff out of their apartment cause they were getting new carpet. It was quite a process! We met with a less active/part member family. We also had our ward thanksgiving party! She came to it. It started at 6:30 but no one really showed up till 8ish but we had a lot of people come and it was really fun!

Sunday was awesome. The talks that were given were on Elder Hollands talk he just gave and about member missionary work. Just the message the ward needed to hear👌. We had 5 lessons after church and 3 of those were meal appointments. Our fridge constantly has food in it, definitely I can't complain about! The ward here is super good about feeding the "Elders" haha. For reals though the sisters in our ward never get fed! But we're trying to remind the relief society that the sisters need to be fed too.

That was my week. We're working with some more people and hopefully in this next month we can have a baptism! Crossing my fingers!

Love all you guys! 
Hope you all have a happy thanksgiving!

Elder Marz