Guadalajara- Week Five + 100th Day as a Missionary!!!

so this week was quite the monumental week for me, this past thursday was a historic day for me haha i not only celebrated the completion of my first month here in mexico, but it was also my 100th day as a missionary! cool i know huh, i celebrated with toast and this stuff i found thats like magical nutella caramel stuff, its delish. but ya it was pretty good to look back also and see how far ive come along, it was a good motivation booster and helper to keep working hard and pressing onward. 

also i found out some pretty cool news, however im gonna wait till i call home to tell you all. 

also this past week was holy week here in mexico, as you can probably guess, yes the catholics here were going crazy. a whole section of our area was closed from thursday till sunday just because its crazy there, so that was interesting to say the least. there are some things here in mexico that im sure im never going to understand or get used to and here is one of those things: so here its tradition in this colonia called san martin to congregrate to this hill in the colonia and on your way there if you want to show your faith you basically beat yourself up, or have others beat you up, so that you bleed profusely and carry around a big wooden cross experiencing high amounts of pain; and then if youre really devoted to your faith you go the extra mile and also drive nails through your hands and feet and wear a crown of thorns to resemble the crucifixion; but then however if youre hardcore and really want to be close to Christ and show your faith and love, you crucify yourself, not to the point of death, but for an hour or so yes. and yes, what you just read is factual and yes the people actually do it. thats more or less why we had a whole section of our area closed haha, because the people go crazy. i personally dont understand it. 

another thing that im never going to get used to here is the dang buses haha theyre basically like a mr toads wild ride times a gazillion, i swear that when i get home im never going near public transport or buses ever again haha, i now know why Jamies called public transport the buses to hell, because its true haha.

 also another goal that i set for myself this week, by the end of my mission i want to have a part like Elder Bednar, cuz that guy rocks a part like none another and hes awesome and i think hes someone to definitely aspire to be like. also i want to tell you about one of my friends here. hes 9 yrs old and he has down syndrome. his mom is member, weve been teaching his sister and he himself is just awesome. i never would have thought that my work and experiences with people with special needs would help me out on my mission. its kinda funny cuz Elder Briz never has any idea what to do with him, so whenever we go over to there house i always take help him out with him haha, but ya the kid is just awesome. 

one of his favorite things to do is take this picture book i have of gospel art and look at the all the pictures and its just awesome to sit there and watch his face light up at the pictures of Christ and the prophets and the Book of Mormon characters and other gospel pictures. i firmly believe that the vail is thinner for these select souls of our Heavenly Father, and i love being work and play with him. at first the sister felt bad for him always playing with me and talking to me during lessons with her daugther, but i told her that its no worries, before  my mission i worked alot with kids who had special needs and after my mission i plan on becoming a special ed teacher and she loved that haha she told me that was great and since then shes never worried about him playing around with me. but ya it really has made me think alot more about going into teaching special education when i get home, and i think its something im gonna pursue when i get home. i included some pictures of him wearing my tag and the tie that Nicole made. 

it feels good finishing up this week and knowing that ive completed my first change cycle in the mission field and my first month. surprisingly the major culture, language, and really just life change didnt kill me. yes i know "mister i cant deal with change" here is still alive haha im still getting used to it yes and it will take awhile till im fully accustomed to it but its not something that i really worry about anymore. its something thats out of my control and so i just go through my days doing what im supposed to do and every now and then i take the time to look back and see where ive come and its crazy how much ive grown and progressed in so many aspects. 

missions are undoubtedly the best place for young men and i can testify of this because there is growth and change and skills and other things learned and discovered on a mission that isnt possible any where else. im just excited to see what these next two years have in store for me. i know its gonna be awesome and i look forward to each new day because well in truth, each day is the best day ive had yet. keep pushing forward faithfully back home and doing what you can to build the kingdom of God wherever you may be.

 i love you all and hope the Lord is blessing each of you according to your needs. love you all and thanks for the support, prayers and love!
Elder Maccarthy

playing with downed power lines

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