26 September 2013

Elder and Hermana Salinas

Elder and Hermana Salinas, from Mexico City, spent a week with our Monterrey West Mission (think  mission tour/review) last week. We met them the day before our "training" when the Mission President invited us to join the four of them for lunch. He wanted us to hear about Elder Salinas' job, where he is in charge of the new "Self Reliance Program" the church is developing here in Mexico. Apparently,  "Employment" and "PEF"are being merged into this group called "Self-Reliance" which includes all enterprise, employment, and education support. It is already active in the US and is being introduced now in Mexico, Brazil, Ghana, and the Caribbean.

He is basically recruiting Senior Missionaries to help with this project--so here is the plug: Senior Missionaries are needed to run the whole program in each country, manage the program in various areas of each country, and help with teaching, mentoring and set-up in each stake. They need hundreds of Senior Missionaries! You can even serve by telephone or Skype from home--So, tell your friends, especially the Spanish and Portuguese speaking ones.  As Elder Salinas described the scope of this program, it is going to change the world--really! So, get your papers in and come and help!

Hermana & Elder Salinas

The following day, we had a great training last week from Elder and Sister Salinas in our Zone Meeting. We were especially touched by Hermana Salinas. She taught eloquently and specifically of real service: "Do NOT ask someone what they need done! Look, listen, pray for guidance. Announce what you will do and then do it." 

She told a story about a missionary that asked a sister who was cooking for them, to teach him how to scrape the needles off of the cactus* that she was preparing for dinner because he had always wanted to learn. She was very surprised because no one wants that job! She proceeded to teach him the technique and soon he was working alone while she finished up the other dinner preparations. As they prepared to leave her house, she told the Elder that he had done such a good job that she was going to buy a whole crate of cactus leaves for him to do the next day. He replied, "Then I'll be back!" 

Sister Salinas promised the missionaries that if they would prayerfully seek real ways to serve, they would receive all the referrals they could handle. She then told of a missionary that received a reference every week from one of the sister's who fed them because of his service to her--but not only to her. He was serving everyone who fed him, and consequently receiving referrals from all of them. His last month, he taught and brought to baptism 29 people because of those sweet referrals. 

*The "prickly pear cactus" is a mainstay of the Mexican diet. The spines of the "nopal" (the Spanish name) must be scraped off of the wide, flat leaf before it can be cooked. Depending on what it is cooked with, it can taste much like green beans or like a slightly pickled, firm zucchini. It is the mainstay vegetable here and is served with nearly everything Mexican. Try it, you'll like it!

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