Monday, March 28, 2016

Then and Now

Elder Hackleman at the beginning of his Mission

Elder Hackleman when first called to be AP

Hello Mommsmie!!! Let me just start off by saying I Love you:) Like normal, I have been pondering a ton this week about life, and I once again came to the conclusion that my mom is the best one on earth. I don´t know how I got so lucky to have her, but I am dang clankin thankful I do!:) Ok now that is out of the way, How is life???? What is going on in Nebraksaville? How did Nathan´s show choir competition go??? Do you have another one this week?  What are you guys going to do today? Sorry for so many questions! It seems like I haven´t seen you guys in person for over 20 months!!! haha:)

Who is Nathan´s dance partner?

I am doing great down here! We have been doing zone conferences all week but we finally finished them. We did them in Tuxtepec which was my very first zone! It was pretty crazy because while I was standing up there doing my part of the training session, I randomly had a flashback, not gunna lie, kinda felt like Shawn from Psych of 2 Christmases ago. 

Almost 2 years ago, I was standing in the EXACT same spot as a brand new missionary. I had been asked in my very first zone conference to share my testimony before the zone did a special musical number. As I stood there nervously trying to share the things I know to be true in my broken Spanish, I remembered looking out at all the faces of the missionaries who had so much more time than me, thinking "this whole mission thing might just kill me." Haha. Anyways, after that, one of the zone leaders came up to me and said "Dude I know you are like brand new, but I am predicting it right now, you will be the Assistant some day." I thought, YEAH RIGHT! Anyways, after many months of learning, growing, and teaching, I was once again standing in that exact same spot, having fulfilled the prophecy of my ex zone leader Elder Rodriguez haha. It was kind of an emotional moment for me. After the zone conference, on the ride back, we were all talking about how it went and sister Cordova asked me a question that kind of caught me off guard.  She asked,  Elder Hackleman, do you like being assistant?? I said yeah I love it! But it was such a surprise when president called me! I never expected or wanted to be the assistant. I just always worked as hard as I could without expecting assignments. President then piped in and said, "Yeah that is pretty much how your entire life will be. That is how callings in the church are. When you least expect them. He said that the first time he was called as stake president, everybody was telling him it would be him and he was like Nah I just want to be a gospel doctrines teacher!" Short story long, we had a good time laughing:)

Well, I sure do love you! I hope all is well in Nebraska! Tell everyone I love them!
Oh and what are the plans for the family reunion this year? The 4th is on a Monday right? So how is that all going to go down? I am pretty excited to see everyone, not gunna lie:)

Te amo mas de la vida misma!
Elder Hackleman

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Elder Hackleman

Since Elder Hackleman was born on Saint Patrick's Day, he has always favored Green!

Sight Seeing In Veracruz, Mexico

So I found this cool hallway

But What Happens Next...

Is a Mystery!

This is an old prison.
This is what a typical cell looked like.
It was basically a cave.

This is on top where they had guards posted

Honestly the place is huge, and most of the coolest parts I won´t send pictures of to my family because I want them to come and see it for themselves. It might creep my mom out a little bit haha:)

And in the back you can see industrial Veracruz!

I took a selfie with the bishop!

This was the first church built in America!
Hernan Cortez built it when he came across!
It is pretty cool:)

This is Hernan Cortez´s house!!!

Over the cannon you can see the remains of his oven! That was his kitchen.  The trees are actually growing on top of it!

I love this cool little bridge.

Hey mommy! So my week was pretty awesome:) I pretty much told you everything in the millions of pictures i sent haha. sorry I had a bunch this week. I am pretty sure I will be having changes in the next week or two so I am doing my best to go see everything before I go to my final area.... Dang the time has gone by so fast here in the offices!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Anyways I hope you liked the pictures:) How is nathan doing in Wisconsin???

Love you!
ELder Hackleman

What does a missionary do on his 20th birthday? Service of Course! With a Little Fun Thrown In For Good Measure!

So this is what we did for my birthday!!!:) 

I was thinking to myself Self??? I want to do yardwork today!!! 

So we found a little old lady who was trying to cut some branches on some trees by herself and I was like Clank, we should be helping that little old lady!! 

She was a little hesitant at first. Mexican women are VERY self reliant when it comes to letting a man do their work, for example they will never let you wash the dishes haha, but I find ways around that. You know me. I can sell ice to an African! Wait... how does that phrase go again? 

Anyways, I just grabbed the machete out of her hand, for more than one reason I might add... haha, and started hacking away! She was quickly impressed when she started seeing the Donald Duck shaped hedge I started to carve out of her hedges! It turned out to look a little more like Mashed Potatoes, but I got an E for Effort!!!

Haha seriously though I got soooo dirty:) and sweaty:) I pretty much destroyed that shirt. The good news is, by the time we got finished, I only had a couple of battle scars! #GreatestBirthdayPartyEver!!!!!

I really did enjoy it:) It has been a while since I got to have some fun with a machete:)

Then we go by our investigators house that night, after we got cleaned up from the yardwork:) and she had thrown me a little birthday party! It was awesome! She bought this little cake and everything!!! I love this family:)

This is the little daughter of our investigator who bought me my cake:)
She loves it when I do magic tricks with coins haha:)

Ancient Ruins In Mexico

I love to see the Lamanite temples
I´m going there somedaaaaay
(#sung with a primary song voice!)

So Awesome!

To feel the holy spirit selfies...

Although, you do have to remember these are Lamenite Temple Sites:

Yikes, Stoning was a horrible thing!

Pretending to Raise the Title of Liberty!

My Samuel the Lamenite Impersonation

I think this was a sacrificial table

I Party Crashed On My Brother's Birthday!

Since I missed Grant's 15th birthday, I saw someone having a birthday party on Grant's birthday and decided to crash it.
I am now teaching that family the missionary lessons!

Jaren and Nathan at Dave and Buster's for Grant's birthday!

Grant and Nathan at Dave and Busters

Hello my beloved mother! How art thou? I hopeth that thoueth arteth greateth! Well I don´t know how to speak like Romeo and Juliet, I just put "eth" at the end and hope for the best!

First off I want to say FELIZ CUMPLEAÑOS GRANTISH BO-BANTISH!!!!! TE QUIERO MUCHISIMO HERMANITO! I totally did NOT forget about your birthday. In fact I even bought a little tiny cupcake to celebrate!!!! It was NOTHING like the ones mom makes, but oh well. At least I tried. ALSO I saw a birthday party in the streets and thought to myself, self, anybody who happens to have the same birthday as my favorite 15 year old brother who is NOT taller than me even though he tries so hard, that person needs to hear the gospel! So yes, I party crashed:) and yes, we have a return date to visit them for next Tuesday:) anyways! Happy birthday little buddy:)

Ok, now that I have that out of the way, Momsiccle!!! How is life? You may be wondering why I am writing so early, well I am not going to tell you why:) But hopefully around 4 or 5, I will be able to show you why:) Just be patient!!!:) I know that isn´t one of our expert-ices, but give it a swing:)

I have been doing really great recently! Have I told you about the family we are teaching? It is a single mom with a 10 year old daughter and a 5 year old daughter. They are totally awesome! The little girls are totally in love with me:) haha I am SURE that it has nothing to do with the coin tricks and card tricks and other spur-of-the-moment magic tricks I do to get their attention before a lesson. Anyways, we are hoping they will get baptized this month:)

We have been having a ton of zone conferences lately. They will last for the next couple of weeks! One of the blessings of being in the offices is that I get to see and hear about all the cool stuff before anybody else, for example another 70 will be coming soon. Also the new church video for Easter is totally beautiful!

I hope all is well in Nebraskaland! I will try and get back on in a while to send the pictures of what we are going to do today:) I should still be on for a while longer, but just in case we leave sooner, I wanted to make sure you had a message from me:) Last week I had a mom from Guadalajara Mexico call me freaked out because her son still hadn´t written her that day. She called at 11 at night. I called the elder and found out for some reason the internet cafe they had close by wasn´t open or something. I told him to wake up early, run to another one, and send his mother a clanking letter because I know how worried they get when they don´t hear from us:) haha!!!

I love you more than life itself mom! Oh and start planning our Christmas trip to Mexico! We have to come because some of my converts are getting sealed in December and want me to be there!!!!

Te amo
ELder Hackleman

How I Write My Talks

I talked again in church on Sunday and had everybody laughing and crying at the same time by the end. It is really funny how much giving talks has changed for me since I came on the mission. Remember how I used to type up every word of my talks before???  This is all I wrote down for my talk this past Sunday.

Seth Hackleman wrote:

Hey daddy! Haha don´t feel bad! I have been feeling great! I got over the sickness a couple weeks ago and I have been fine ever since:) As for my shoulder, it is doing good! It seems like the surgery actually did its job! haha It hasn´t dislocated. Sometimes if I have a bunch of stuff in my back pack and it weighs quite a bit, then my shoulder starts to hurt a little but that is just because I haven´t worked out in centuries!!! As for arch supports, I have been hurting pretty bad, but I talked with President Cordova and he is going to take me to a place where they make custom ones so I will be fine! I just have to figure out a time to do it haha.

We did not have any baptisms this week sadly. But we should be having quite a few in this month! Probably towards the end of the month. We have a bunch of investigators which is great. I was surprised we started baptizing so quickly to be honest with you.

I remember Pres Webber! He is awesome! I am surprised he remembers me haha. I didn´t think he would. Who else is on the stake presidency? I can´t remember the other one. I am pretty excited to speak in Sacrament meeting too. I talked again in church on Sunday and had everybody laughing and crying at the same time by the end. It was a pretty good talk if I say so myself:) It is really funny how much giving talks has changed for me since I came on the mission. Remember how I used to type up every word of my talks before??? I will send you a picture of my talk from Sunday:) See if you notice the difference haha.

That is crazy that you had all those reviews! What does that consist of? Just their work ethics and stuff?

As for cool stories from this week... dang I never have a gloomy day.... it is hard to choose the best ones. umm... Oh yeah. So we had another leadership training meeting with all the zone leaders and sister training leaders. I gave a 2 hour long part of the training. It was pretty awesome because while I was up there, I felt inspired to talk about something that I hadn´t planned on talking about. At first I felt a little nervous to do it because I hadn´t gone over it with President Cordova beforehand. But I thought what the clank, I will swing for the fences. So is started talking about the verification from the zone leaders. This might be something hard to understand having never experienced it, but every single night the zone leaders verify for like an hour with all the district leaders. They spend so much time verifying things that in my opinion is useless information. While I was up there, on the spur of the moment, I changed the whole idea of verifying. I changed every method, time frame, days, pretty much everything and I instituted a new way of doing it that would be way more time efficient and hopefully more effective so that they can spend less time verifying and more time planning for the following day. Anyways I thought maybe president would get mad but at the end he said he totally loved my ideas and thought it was going to help out in a major way in the mission! So we tried it this week and we have been seeing some awesome results! Ok so maybe that isn´t very cool from your end but it was a pretty cool experience for me haha:)

That is super cool Nathan is taking the ACT though!!! Good for him! I wish I would have taken it sooner. Oh well.

Thanks for the info daddy! I am missing you tons and tons!"

Elder Hackleman

A Visiting Teacher is...

Wow that sounds awesome!!!! Now I know where I get my public speaking abilities from!! (Check out dad´s email for news on my talk on Sunday haha). That sounds awesome!!! I bet the missionaries in our ward absolutely LOVE you! Sometimes it makes me wonder what it would be like to be a missionary in a ward with somebody that excited to help in, "The Work". I am not saying it is the ONLY way to be a good missionary, but being excited and animated all the time has gotten me this far in the mission, so it must be worth it! Look at all the success you are having too! That is so awesome:)

So how are the Laws doing? I haven´t heard from them in a while.

I would like to read those quotes btw:) if you have them:) i love seeing your projects:)

So what are you guys up to today??? How did it go at the zoo a couple weeks ago?

I have been doing great here. We have a bunch of people that we are teaching and should have quite a few baptisms by the end of the month.  I am hoping for at least 3 or 4. This week we did divisions with Elder Bowers (my comp from Huatusco) and Elder Gonzalez.  He was the elder I knew from my very first area. He is awesome. We got a bunch of work done and had some great laughs along the way:) Today I am going to do a surprise attack on an area that is struggling. My companion and I are going to go drop in and see if we can pick things up a little bit:) It will only be for like an hour or two so I should be back later in the afternoon. Actually I don´t think we will leave until like 1 or 2.

How is life going in Nebraskaville???? I hope all is well! I sure do love you! I am so thankful I have such a stud for a mom that totally kills it en la obra misional!

Elder Hackleman

On Sat, Mar 5, 2016 at 8:52 AM, Amy wrote:

Dear Elder,

What is new in your neck of the woods? How was your week and how are you feeling?

I realized that we are always running and jumping through hoops working on accomplishing all that we need to do in a week. No matter what there is always more to do ha ha. I am having a special women's conference on Sunday during Relief Society. We are having the men take over all the primary and the stake will be teaching the young women. We coordinated this so we can have all of the women together during third hour of church. We will be in the cultural hall. I have been preparing for a over a month, but this week I have redoubled my efforts so all my ducks are in a row. I'm hoping to have a very spiritual experience. It will be about moving forward our missionary challenges through visiting teaching.

We are starting out watching a video produced by the church about the benefits of Relief Society. We will have 5 tables set up in the room with cards showing what district each person is in. I will be teaching the lesson, which is not really a lesson. This week I have been thinking a lot about the time you were getting a missionary companion and you stood up and shouted for joy and showed a lot of animation. Sometimes I think we need to break things up a bit and be a little more energetic so that is what I plan on doing. The gospel is a wonderful thing that does not need to be talked about in hushed tones. We need to get excited and motivated. The meeting is going to be sort of like speed dating, only their will be other action items every time the buzzer goes off.

During this meeting we will be doing a lot of moving around from station to station. The first thing the sisters will do after an introduction and short video is get up and find the table of their district. They will be given a stack of items. Each item will have something they need to "DO". First and foremost they will be given their visiting teaching route. We have quite a few new sisters in the ward, and there are some ladies who serve in primary who don't know anyone. I will tell them what to do in steps. The first action item will be to find their visiting teaching companion, go and find a seat next to each other and talk for 2 minutes getting to know one another. They can discuss things such as the best ways to contact each other, via text, phone calls etc. After the 2 minutes are up I will sound a buzzer and let them know it is time to move on to the 2nd action item. In the stack they were given they will have some really cool cards. Between the two companions they will write a note to the sisters they visit teach. The cards have an awesome Mormon meme on the front and a challenge on the inside. I attached a picture of the meme on the card. I'll explain that part in a second. Anyway, each companionship will then fill out a personalized message for the sisters they visit. After 5 minutes or so, I will ring a buzzer to indicate the time is up.

The next phase will be each of the visiting teachers to go around the room and find the sisters they visit teach. Introduce themselves, talk about schedules etc. Then give their cards. Oh, we also have cards for the visiting teachers to fill out that they will add to the envelope that has contact information on it.

We Are Your
Visiting teachers
Call us Anytime

We will let the getting to know you conversations go on for the next 5 to 8 minutes or so. I will ring the buzzer again and show another video, this one is about visiting teachers. I will then do some training on how to be a visiting teacher.

We will have a basket in the front of the room. After everyone is finished giving out their cards, any sisters who are not at church, will need the envelopes filled out and ready to mail. Once that is done they can each drop their card in the basket and we will mail them out for them.

The next step in the training is to teach the best way to report visiting teaching. All of the sisters will be asked to report their visiting teaching within 48 hours. On Tuesday evening we will calculate all those who have reported their visiting teaching and find out who is the winning district. The winning district will be rewarded generously during our Relief Society dinner which will be held on the 3rd Tuesday of the month. Ideally, we will have %100 percent visiting teaching by the 8th of the month.

The inside of the cards that will be given out and mailed out is our ward mission challenge for the month of March, which happens to be, service. See below the March Challenge.

The final item each sister will have in their stash is a little gift box I will ask them not to open until the very end of the meeting. In the gift box is a challenge for each sister in the ward. As you can see there is a pattern here. I am calling for all hands on deck, and calling the ward to action. In the box is 18 quotes attached with a clip. I will ask them to ponderize on one quote a week. I will invite them to place them on the mirror of their bathroom where they can look at it every single day. I will send the ponderizing quotes in a separate email if you would like me to, but suffice it to say, they are all inspirational ways to be a good visiting teacher. If there are sisters at the meeting who are not visiting teachers or are not members, I will still ask them to participate, but to pick a couple of people to serve, could be neighbors, or friends or family members.

Anyway, I am hoping for good things. I will let you know how it goes. One thing for sure, I am going to have to be one huge motivational speaker to pull this whole thing off ha ha. Wish me luck:) Love Mom

March Challenge

Offer Someone Compassion;

You’ll Probably Need Some Later

Spend at least 1 hour during March volunteering.

To find service opportunities visit:

Type in your zip code to browse the local programs that are looking for volunteers