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

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Sept. 17, 2012

Well Elder Payne left home to Utah so now it's just me and Elder Stevens here taking over the area. It's been a fun few days trying to figure out how to get around town without our GPS (Elder Payne) giving us directions. It's been a lot of fun though; it makes things exciting. 

The family that we started teaching when we got to the area a month ago (yikes! It's been a month?) is getting baptized this Sunday! It's been a great teaching and conversion process. The kids are absolutely CRAZY and makes the lessons kind of long, but they have miraculously been able to feel the spirit. A couple lessons ago we were reading from the "Family: A proclamation to the world" pamphlets and the 2 year old little devi---boy somehow got a hold of Elder Stevens Book of Mormon without him really realizing it and he took it a couple feet away, plopped down on the ground, started flipping through the pages and stopped at Moroni chapter 6. It was at this point that I realized what was happening. I saw a look of determination in little Jonathan's eyes and I knew what was about to happen. All I could do was gasp and manage to say "oh no",.. and then he did it. He grasped the frail pages in his tiny hand and yanked as hard as he could. Elder Stevens looked over as he heard that wonderful chapter being ripped out of his mint condition, genuine leather, Book of Mormon. He leaped off the couch and had a tug-of-war with little Jonathan and finally managed to get his pages back. After this 15 second catastrophe, I was stunned, Elder Stevens was bewildered, the parents felt terrible, and Jonathan was having a blast laughing his head off. That night Elder Stevens managed to tape back in Moroni chapter 6. What a blessing because we use that a lot to teach people about church. Phew, crisis avoided. 

Anyway, the temperature is cooling down, we met some great people this past week, as a zone we are improving in our missionary efforts, and things are just going really good right now. I couldn't ask for more. I was a little worried though when we went to wal-mart today and saw halloween decorations. Halloween of 2010 was my last Sunday before going into the MTC that following Wednesday. Holy smokes. Have I mentioned that time flies?

The members here are amazing and I'm excited to continue to visit them and work with them to share the gospel. 

I love you all! Thanks for the postcards! I got them one at a time during the week. It was awesome :)
Cuidense mucho y que les vaya bien. 

-Elder Brett

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Sept. 10, 2012

Dear family,

Things are going absolutely amazing down here in Hidalgo/Mission/McAllen. The whole family that we're teaching came to church on Sunday and then we went over to Bishop G____'s house for a family home evening. Juan Pablo, the 9-year old son said the opening prayer and then after the FHE, which went wonderfully well, Bishop G___ asked the father if he'd be comfortable saying the last prayer. He said yes and as the Bishop and the rest of the family folded their arms and bowed their heads for the prayer, Juan Pablo, Jose, Jasmin, and even the 2 year old boy Jonathan all got on their knees and folded their arms. Bishop and his family were astounded. I guess we forgot to let Bishop know that we always kneel in a circle as a family for the closing prayer after our teaching visits. We left the FHE that night really happy because we know that Bishop is excited for this family to get baptized. They are going to be a great addition to the ward. 

I've been having so much fun teaching families. There's nothing quite like it. I cannot wait for y'all to come down and visit these people that I've grown to love so much. I stay in contact still with all of them through good ol' snail mail and it's been great getting their updates. I told you that Tabby is at BYU right? She sent me a BYU t-shirt. All the families in Edinburg are doing great. It's tough being so close yet so far away! Oh well, I'll see them soon enough. We've just started teaching some additional families; they are early on in the teaching process but I'll let you know how it goes as they progress.

I think (I hope!) it's starting to get a little little cooler now. We went out this morning right at 6:30 to wash our car and it was actually kind of chilly haha. It's going to be weird going to Utah in November! I'm gonna freeze my toosh off. By the way, it looks like I can't extend my mission at all because of Thanksgiving, which is a good thing though. It will be nice to be home for Thanksgiving. My departure date is now November 14th. My original departure date was the 7th because the transfers were off by a week from Monterrey, but they're letting me go home a week later that way I can go home with the entire group. 

I love y'all mucho! Thanks for your emails and letters. 

-Elder Brett

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Sept. 5, 2012

Hey family!

Sorry I couldn't write on Monday. Stinkin' Labor Day. Hah but guess what? They still had school down here on Labor Day. We were talking to the bishop in the english ward and he was telling us how annoyed he was that they still have school on American holidays, and that even though it's mostly Hispanics down here, that they should still respect the US holidays haha. He said that for summer school, the kids still have school on the fourth of July. Those poor souls...

Anyway, we went to the church gymnasium and played volleyball as a zone. It was a ton of fun! The church is in Mission, Texas and it's the stake center for the McAllen West Stake so it has a full size gymnasium. Last year when I was in Rio Grande we would occasionally (when we had miles) come down to the Stake Center and play basketball for p-days. Those were the days...

The zone has really been struggling these past few months with missionary work/baptisms. We have two great district leaders in the zone and we are working really well with them to help pick things up. I'm excited to see the progress. One of our goals was to increase the unity as a zone and I think that playing volleyball together really helped. Hey I told y'all that Elder Ferrel (my hijo!!) lives in the apartment with me right? Man it's been so much fun haha. In the mornings we go across the street and play tennis together. It's a lot of fun. I've gotten the hang of hitting the ball over the net and keeping it within bounds, so this morning I've advanced to trying to hit the ball as hard as I can over the net. I still have a lot of progress to make. I kept smacking it into the net this morning. I think Elder Ferrel got annoyed. But then, as we were almost done playing, he lobbed the tennis ball over to me and I smacked it back to him so hard and fast that it hit him square in the gut. It was great. 

The work is going great in our area. Right before I got here, the elders contacted a pretty cool family and we had our first lesson once Elder Stevens and I got here. They came to church last Sunday for the first time and are progressing great. We taught the wife and oldest son (9) the restoration and they ate it right up. The husband has been progressing as well, but he has a crazy work schedule which has made it hard to teach him and keep him on track with his wife and kids. There are 6 total in the family: mom, dad, and 4 kids, but only one kid is old enough for baptism. The youngest, Jonathan, is 2 years old and he is an absolute maniac! It's a good thing we are a trio, because 1 is assigned to distract the little devil while the other 2 teach. During the lesson we also switch roles. It's crazy but fun haha. The other boy (7) has a form of autism and the mom was really worried about how he would act in church. She said that for the past 2 years she hasn't been able to take him to any church because he gets frustrated and can't handle being around that many people, but last Sunday he came with the family and he loved it. He loved the primary and he never acted up. I think that played a huge role in helping the mom become converted to the Gospel. She could hardly believe it. 

We're super close to the Rio. I think this upcoming P-day we'll take some cool pictures. I love being so close to the border. I got a letter this past week from Elder Dickson, my MTC companion who is in Tampico, Mexico and he said that whenever he asks people if they have been to the U.S. they always say that they've been to McAllen. I've met quite a few people from Monterrey and Tampico. Who knows, maybe we've run into the same people. Crazy...

Well, I love you all! Thanks for the updates and your prayers. 

Con amor,
Elder Brett

P.S. Sorry I forgot to email my address last week! It's:

3712 Howard Dr. Apt # 18
McAllen, TX 

This is probably the last place you'll be able to write me on the mission! Better enjoy it while you can!! hehe

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Aug. 27, 2012

Oh my wonderful family :)

I am now serving as the zone leader in the marvelous Hidalgo Zone. My companions are Elder Payne and Elder Stevens. We're in a trio for 3 weeks because Elder Payne extended. It has been a pretty awesome week. I've met a lot of the members and we've found quite a few more people to teach. The people are great. The area we work in is called The Plantation because we cover a giant subdivision/mini community of gigantic homes located near the border of Mexico and Texas, and the community is called The Plantation. It's pretty cool. There are a ton of members that live there. They feed us well :) We also cover a large area of humble homes. I prefer the humbler areas. Much more receptive.

While the zone is called Hidalgo, we actually work in the city of Mission and a part of McAllen. I love my area. Back when I was with Elder Covington, he was always talking about how amazing The Plantation was (He served there before going to Edinburg), so I was pretty excited when I found out I was heading here. We'll see what these next few months bring! You have no idea how excited I am. Also, Elder Ferrel, my greenie from Mercedes, is in the apartment! Haha it's been so much fun being around him again. I have plans to visit him and his family in San Fernando, Mexico when he finishes his mission. That won't be until 2014! Hijole.

Well, I'm excited to send y'all more updates as the work progresses here in Hidalgo (Mission/McAllen).

Love you!
-Elder Brett

P.s. I'm including a picture of the C_____ family. I love them to death!! One is at their house on Monday night after having an FHE. They all started crying when I told them I was getting transferred :( The other is Monday afternoon; we went to the church to play some indoor soccer as a zone and the C_____ family came too. It was awesome.