Brett's apartment mailing address:

3712 Howard Dr. Apt # 18
McAllen, TX

Brett's mission office address:

Texas McAllen Mission
Attn: Elder Brett Mecham
200 West La Vista Ave.
McAllen, TX 78501

Monday, April 23, 2012

Hello familia,

I am now in the beautiful city of Edinburg. It's weird because the city is actually quite beautiful; I haven't seen a city like it in about a year and a half. hmm. 

Anyway, my companion's name is Elder Covington. We're getting along great. We are working with some pretty amazing people so I'm not missing Mercedes as much as I thought I would. I still want to stay updated on the people over there. Elder Ferrel will hopefully keep me up to date.

I'm in a car area again (I'm not sure if that's a good or bad thing). Elder Covington and I are the zone leaders in Edingburg, but he's the senior companion and I gotta say, it is pretty awesome being a junior companion again. It was really stressful being a district leader and training a new missionary last transfer. I got a new load now being a ZL but I feel like a large load has been taken off my shoulders. Maybe because I went from being in a large district to a small zone. There were 8 in my district but now there are only 12 in this zone, including my companion and I. It's pretty cool. Easier to keep the unity in a smaller zone. We're about to go play some basketball in McAllen with a bunch of missionaries. That's definitely a benefit of being close to McAllen; there are a bunch of missionaries close by, as opposed to when I was isolated in Rio Grande and Corpus Christi. 

Well, I'm excited to get to know the area better and keep working with these people. I hope I'm here for a while. That's what I said in Mercedes and I got my transfer call the next day. Maybe I better keep my mouth shut. 

Anyway, love y'all mucho!

-Elder Brett 

Monday, April 16, 2012

April 16, 2012

Wow. I can't believe I head out tomorrow! I'm gonna miss Mercedes so much! ahhh. Yesterday was probably the best day ever (How many times have I said that in my emails?). But this time I'm serious! This kid named Draven finally got baptized (I was privileged to perform the ordinance) and the A___ family came to church. Remember the family Elder Harris and I found? We sang "Eternas Puedan Ser Las Familias". Well, it's been a long teaching process, a lot of doubts and obstacles to overcome (He preaches at a Pentecostal church), and there were many times where I thought that we should probably drop them but we'd pray about them to confirm our decision and we always felt like we should keep teaching. Yesterday after church, we took pictures and afterwards they thanked me for not giving up on them. Sis. A____ then said that it won't just be them getting baptized, but other family members too! Turns out, we ran into her sister-in-law the other day without even knowing and she called Sis. A____ and mentioned her interest in learning more. Anyway, a lot of cool things are about to happen. Too bad I'm getting transferred right? This is why I don't want to go! But it's okay. There are some cool people waiting for me in Edinburg. I can hear them, just like Elder Harris and I heard Bro. A___ the day we found him. Oh I am so glad that we decided to keep knocking that day when we wanted to go someplace else...

Well, I'll let you know how I like Edinburg. I'm really excited. Can you believe it's already mid April? I remember last Easter so clearly. Elder Stone, Pallo, Giinez and I made breakfast tacos in the morning. We even used a tablecloth on the table, placemats, and drank from actual glasses instead of just straight from the bottle. It was pretty elegant. This year Elder Ferrel made me breakfast tacos de huevos y chorizo but we were in a hurry to church so I ate them on the go. I had a gansito for dessert (Mexican treat, similar to little debbie). Anyway...

Love ya lots!
-Elder Brett :)

April 9, 2012

I'm getting transferred!!!!! I can't believe it. It's funny because on
Friday night, after an awesome day, I was thinking, Hmmm I bet I'm
going to be here for a while. I love Mercedes. I still have 6 more
weeks to train my companero and then I bet he will leave and I'll get
a new companion for another transfer or two. And then out of the blue
I got a call from Presidente on Saturday night and he told me I'm
being transferred to Edinburg. It's not that far away. Another one of
those cities just outside of McAllen. I'm sooo sad to leave Mercedes
and my companero and the families we are about to baptize but I'm
excited to start again in a new area. I'm actually not leaving until
next Tuesday so I still have one final week here. So sad...
The other night I was brushing my teeth and we got a text from another
companionship in the district and they mentioned something about peer
pressure, but Elder Ferrel didn't understand it so he exclaimed in his
loud Mexican voice, "Peer pressure? What in the world is that!?" Oh
man. If only you could hear it. His english is so good but I love when
he uses an english phrase that he's learned and then tries to sound
out something unfamiliar. He's got an awesome accent. Priceless.
Every time Elder Ferrel and I decide who's turn it is to pray, we have
this tradition of either saying, "Who, yo?", "Quien, Me?", or "Who,
tu?" Haha and then the other day we were about the leave the apartment
so we knelt down to say a prayer but once again, we were unsure of
who's turn it was to pray. I told him that in order to decide who
would pray, we were going to play a game: We were to list off names of
metals in spanish and the first person to not be able to think of one
would say the prayer (You'd think that I would have the disadvantage
right? wrong). I told him, "okay, I'll start. Bronce!" (bronze). He
went next and said "Oro". So I said okay and bowed my head and crossed
my arms so he could pray. Haha. The verb "to pray" in spanish is orar
and the first person present is "oro". But, it also means gold. haha
it was sooo funny. He paused for a second and I could sense him trying
to figure out what was going on as I had my eyes shut and head bowed.
After a few second I lifted my head while holding back laughter and
looked at him. He was smiling. And then he said the prayer. Again, it
was a priceless moment.
It's getting HOT. I am so excited for the summer. Elder Ferrel is
dreading it. I asked him "But aren't you from Mexico!?" and he said
Yeahh but I just go outside to get done whatever I need to get done
and then go back inside. No knocking doors and riding bikes all day.
True true.
Well, we are getting together to play some futbol. I can't wait.
There's no school today so we'll have some members playing with us.
That's the best. They got soccer in their blood.
Love you all!
Elder Brett

Thursday, April 5, 2012

April 2, 2012

Hey family,
Well, another week has gone by. I feel like I was just sitting at this computer in this humble Mercedes library writing y'all. It was a pretty eventful week. It sounds like you all heard about that crazy storm that wreaked havoc in McAllen. The Mission home was actually beat up pretty bad. We didn't get hit that bad in Mercedes. Just a lot of rain and lightning.
This is what Presidente Trayner said about the storm:
Como muchos saben el jueves pasado hubo una tormenta muy fuerte en McAllen.  Hubo grandes truenos y relámpagos brillantes por más de media hora.  Nos pareció como si fuera un tornado.  Granizó con granizos el tamaño de una bola de golf.  El granizo quebró los cristales de unas de las ventanas de la casa de misión.  Ahora los árboles y arbustos  en nuestro vecindario no tienen ninguna hoja.  Nuestro vecindario ahora se aparece muy raro y no tan bonito como antes.
Muchos de los misioneros del valle vinieron el próximo día para prestar servicio a nuestros vecinos y a otros en McAllen y Mission.  He oído hablar que los de Mission les gustó un almuerzo de fajitas por los hermanos Gonzales.  ¡Los que nos ayudaron se disfrutaron de diez pizzas!  Gracias a todos por su ayuda.
The following morning, all the missionaries serving close to McAllen went and helped clean up the neighborhood. I wish I would've brought my camera. It was a mess. There wasn't a single leaf left on any of the trees and I'm not sure there were any windows that had glass still attached. The houses got flooded with feet of water and the roofs were bare of shingles. As Presidente said in his email, the hail was nearly the size of golf balls. I have never seen hail so big before in my life. There was a Mercedes Benz SUV that got absolutely destroyed. I felt awful for these people. Fortunately they all probably have insurance. It was fun to be able to help people clean though. They appreciated our help. A couple of us went to the next-door neighbor of a member and it was an older lady that at first said she didn't want us to help her; she was just going to wait a couple days to clean. We sort of insisted and she finally let us. She gave us rakes and shovels and we got to work. She then came out and started talking to us and told us how she loves the LDS church and has given donations to the LDS church in the past. She was so grateful for our help. We really didn't do that much.
Anyway, it was a crazy storm. I loved loved loved conference this past weekend. Man, I remember struggling to make it through just two sessions. I was sad when it was all over. The other elders and I were talking about how waiting for conference is like waiting for Christmas to arrive. Fortunately conference is twice a year :)
Elder Ferrel and I are enjoying bounteous blessings. The people here in South Texas are amazing. I really really hope there will be a temple built here soon. Maybe in the fall conference they'll announce the McAllen Texas temple?! That would be crazy. It would be fun to be in the stake center when that gets announced.
So, I talked with President Trayner last week. I want to extend my mission. The maximum I can extend is 3 weeks so it wouldn't be that much longer. He told me to talk to you all first though, and then he can process it. I really really want to extend. This is the best place in the entire mundo! Maybe I can come home just in time for Thanksgiving? I still have plenty of time to think about it and work out the details.
I just want to let you know how much I am loving my time as a full-time missionary and I am so so so thankful for all of your prayers and letters/emails! They make time go by so fast. Oh and guess what, my companion just got an email saying his mom is going to be getting baptized too, along wiith his younger brothers and dad. sooo cool.
Love you all!
-Elder Mecham

Mallory's email to Brett this week ... the first week of April

Oh Brett, you are going to get a kick out of this for sure.
So, you know how I emailed you about that tornado/storm last week?  well, I told mom about it and was just like, man, I'm sure we would have heard something already if Brett's area was badly affected so I'm sure he's ok.  Well, on Sunday afternoon mom texted me that she had just spoken with you and that the mission home had been destroyed so they had decided to scale back the mission so you were being sent home now!  I totally bought it.  I was just in shock and thinking about how this changed everything, and how you were going to be able to start school in the fall, but how applications already needed to be submitted, so what were you going to do, and then I was like, perfect, he can come visit me in florida again before school starts, and then I was like oh man, but he's going to be so disappointed to be leaving early!  I called mom back and she just kept trying to give me hints by saying outrageous things and I stiill didn't pick up on it.  When I asked if you were sad to be leaving, she was like no, he's excited about starting school, and that surprised me.  And then she told me you'd decided not to do engineering or anything, and that you decided you wanted to just study art.  I was like, what?!  Nooo he can't do that, there's no job market for that, he doesn't even like art all that much, what is he thinking!?  And then mom (who could not believe I was that gullible) finally was like, Mallory, what day is it?  And I was like, Sunday?  I don't know.  And then it dawned on me that it was April Fools Day.  Uuuuuugh she got me so good.
But man she got me excited about having you come home now, so now November seems like so far away!!