The week in pictures

Lindsay didn't write a letter this week. We were able to Skype with her on Christmas Day and it was amazing!  She was super happy and enjoying Christmas Day in the beautiful home of her "mom" from the mission. We felt truly blessed to be able to see her absolutely radiating the light and spirit of a missionary.   To sum things up she said "I love Christmas, I love being a missionary and I love all of you!"  


Half Way Done!!

Buenas!  So, this week I’m going to hit my half-way mark!  Yes, people, you read that right!  Hermana Keeler survived 9 months in the mission!  I cannot stress enough that I never thought that I would make it this far!  But our Heavenly Father knew that I could and that’s why He called me on a mission.  I can’t believe that my mission is already halfway over, but to be honest, at the same time it kind of scares me that I have to do all of this over again.  But everyone tells me the first half is way longer than the second half.

So much has happened in 9 months.  I’ve learned SO much.  I’ve laughed so hard.  I’ve cried a few times too.  I’ve learned to express myself with a symphony of poorly rolled “r”s and a handful of “que?”s.  I’ve learned to live in a very different country with a very different way of life.  I’ve been pushed, pulled and stretched to my limits.  I’ve learned to be a little less self centered.  And I’ve learned to love a whole lot more.

You know how much I love lists.  You all should have seen it coming.  A list of things that make the mission the best (in no particular order)

  1. THE PEOPLE:  We in the US need to learn a little bit of charity, love and humility.  I have been shocked time and time again by their willingness to help me.  I honestly feel like I’ve been served more than I have actually served.
  2. THE FOOD:  It’s so good.  #empanizado4life #stacksonstacksonstacksoftortillas  #flanonfleek
  3.  THE SUN:  I thank our Heavenly Father every day that I’m not serving in the cold.      Even though sometimes I feel like I’m going to die, it’s better than the cold.
  4.  THE HUMIDITY:  Just kidding, humidity is actually the worst but I haven’t used lotion for 7 1/2 months because of it.  
  5.  MY HAMMOCK:  I love it so much (maybe more than I love Muffy.)
  6.  PREACH MY GOSPEL:  This manual is the key to being a successful missionary.  I seriously underestimated its value at the beginning of my mission.
  7.  MY MISSIONARY FRIENDS:  I’ve met some incredible people here and have learned so much from their examples.  Also, I’ve learned that country and cultural differences have nothing to do with one’s ability to make friends (not sure if that made sense, my English is not as great as it once was.)
  8. THE BOOK OF MORMON:  There are so many cool stories in this book.  Go read Alma 24 if you don’t believe me.
  9. SPANISH:  There are so many things you can learn from learning a second      language.  The way that you think about everything suddenly has double the possibilities, double the meaning.  For example, the word “enchilarse” means literally translated, “to make oneself spicy”.  But is used to describe when you eat something really spicy to the point when you’re red and sweating, or accidentally get something spicy on some part of your body (usually the face).  It’s one of my favorite words and I use it quite frequently!.  

***So this is where her letter ended.  She writes her letters on paper and takes a picture of them and sends them to me.  So I get to transcribe them for you every week.  I think she thought she was sending me pictures of all the pages but she only sent the front two.  I just know she never would have ended a list on number 9!  So we will have to wait for the conclusion next week :(

But I am sure she would have ended this email thanking everyone for their emails and all the love and support you have given to her through these first 9 months of her mission.  And she definitely would have wished you all a Feliz Navidad!  

And as her mom, I have been overwhelmed by the amount of love and concern shown for her by all of you, her family and friends and the wonderful people she serves in Mexico!  So thank you all and have a wonderful Christmas! 

Hermana Keeler y su madre

And here are lots of pictures just in case you worried that she wasn't having any fun!  

Opposition in all things, even delicious food

Buenas!  So, this week was really GREAT!  First off, Argi was baptized!  She’s so cute and has such a strong testimony.  She shared her “story” with everyone and it was so powerful!  She talked about how she wasn’t raised in a religious home and didn’t really have a relationship with God.  But she really has grown so much spiritually!  It’s been so cool to see her process.  She’s the first investigator that I’ve been with for the whole process!  It’s been such a privilege to be an instrument in the hands of the Lord in her life!

Like I always say, this week was full of ups and downs.  We were stressed out of our minds a few times.  I almost cried out of frustration like 6 times, and I also shed 2 tears of happiness :) once during Argi’s testimony and again during the Primary Program this Sunday. ( I really have grown to love little kids in the mission)  But anyway, the best weeks are always the most stressful.  Opposition in all things right? (see 2 Nephi 2:11).

Speaking of oppostion, so the food here has really been against us for the last little while.  But not because it’s making us sick.  Because it’s making us fat.  I’ve gotten used to eating everything with habanero chiles, lime and tortillas.  I love all the food now.  And the people love to feed us!  On Sunday we had three meal appointments.  First we each ate 3 conchita tacos (a delicious meat that everyone in the world must try), then we ate sloppy joes (it’s a long story), spaghetti and lime pie, and then we had mole with chicken.  I was so full I felt like I was going to throw up haha!  I lost a ton of weight in my training but now I feel like I’ve gained it all back :(  WHY MUST THE FOOD BE SO DELICIOUS!?!?  You would think that walking all day in sun would balance it all out, but it doesn’t NI MODOS!

Something that I’ve really come to realize in the last few weeks is that everyone is entitled to exercise their own agency.  We can’t obligate anyone to do anything.  People need to learn to act for themselves.  If we compel them to do things, they are never going to learn or progress.  Even though sometimes we wish we could make our investigators understand, force them to church and keep them hostage there, we can’t because that’s illegal.  No, I’m joking but really sometimes I just want so badly for people to follow trough on their word and keep their commitments like to read or to pray or to go to Church.  So that they can see for themselves the truthfulness of the Gospel.  BUT, God gave us agency and we have to respect that!   Article of Faith 11 clearly states that we have the privilege to worship God how we want and allow others that same privilege!  He trusts us to make our own decisions according to the knowledge that we have .  We as missionaries bring this knowledge to the people, invite them to act, and then let them exercise their free agency.  Exercise your agency today by reading Alma 26 (my fave chapter in the Book of Mormon) or checking out all the cool Christmas videos on   I love you all!

Hermana Keeler

Send her your Christmas Wishes!  She will love to hear from you! 

Singing on the Bus

Buenas!  So this week was way awesome!  The highlight of the week was that we went to Merida to have a meeting with Elder Pieper (a Church authority that’s over Mexico).  It was way fun to go back to Merida after not being there for a little while.  It was nice to go to a place that I recognized.  It felt a little bit like coming home.  We got to go in fancy buses again.  We were sitting right in front of the little TV and it was really hard not to watch the movie #obediencebringsblessings.  Anyway, my comp and I were in a special choir for Elder Pieper, so we went up early to practice.  All of us missionaries that were going to sing met up near the temple and then we all took a bus to a church nearby.  There were like 16 missionaries all on one bus!  We sang Christmas hymns for all of the other passengers.  It was a very cool experience.  I felt very blessed to be a missionary :)

The conference with Elder Pieper was so great!  I was actually really surprised at how down to earth and informal it was.  It was way cool though.  One thing that I think a lot of church members (myself included) do is expect general authorities to give us mind blowing revelations to our questions.  But that’s not usually how it is.  Heavenly Father is the same, yesterday, today and forever, and so are His doctrines.  We already have the fulness of the restored gospel.  General Authorities are really inspired in the way that they apply the simple truths that we already have.  I really loved the perspectives that Elder Pieper took on missionary work.  It was really great - all of it!  So that was the main event of the week.

We've been teaching a mom and her 3 daughters for the last 4 weeks. The daughter is 17 and is getting baptized this week. Yesterday they all went to church and it was really cool. Afterward we went to their house and had another lesson. The mom hadn't accepted the invitation to be baptized yet. After the lesson I felt prompted to ask her how she felt about her daughter's baptism. She told us that she was really happy and had really seen a change in her daughter. She also said that their relationship is so much stronger than it was before. The gospel really has brought them together!!!! We then asked her if she wanted to change her life like her daughter was doing. She accepted the invitation to follow our Savior Jesus Christ and be baptized on Christmas Eve! The Spirit was so strong and  I felt Heavenly Father's love for us, and especially for our families!!!! 

Now I’m going to share 3 things about the Mexican culture that I realized/learned this week.

  1. Everyone wears Crocs!  Alyse and Maren would love it.  Haha like even adults wear them.
  2. No one is ever barefoot.  Everyone uses crocs or flip flops when they’re in their house.  Even little kids.
  3. Whispering isn’t a thing.  Doesn’t matter the situation, haha it’s normal voice all the time! 

I’m happy to be a missionary!  I’m so tired and so stressed and so hungry all the time but somehow I’m content with that.  The mission is hard sometimes, but usually it’s just really great!

I love you all!  Have a great week!

Hermana Keeler


 An elder moving on to his "next mission".

 Eating tamales on the bus!!!