Monday, September 1, 2014

Hola familia y amigos

It has been a really good week! Were working really hard and doing our best!! Mexico is great! If I didnt have my trainer i would be lost most of the time! The Spanish is coming along well! I can understand a lot more than I can speak and I have so much to improve on, but its getting so much better! Xalpa is pretty sweet! Our bishop is super cool and he is really good with helping us out. The food is pretty good too! This week I was able to go on splits with one of our zone leaders so I spent a night in a different area. It was pretty sweet, Elder Zeagler is from North Carolina and we spoke English for a night!! Woo! His area was super nice but I was glad to get back to Xalpa, its my home. Elder Mendez is pretty cool! I am having a lot of fun! I had my first baptism yesterday! a nine year old boy named Gibran1 His family is members but by request of the bishop we taught him the lessons. He asked me to baptize him this week. Its been so crazy, But I love it so much. I am learning so much and finding out I have so many weaknesses but I feel the lords help in my life all the time! Love you all and I miss you so much. I miss Sunday dinners at grandmas, but I am in good hands here! I will send pictures next week!

(This picture is from the MTC)

Monday, August 25, 2014

I'm in Mexico !!

August 25, 2014

I don't even know where to start!! This has been one of the longest-best-craziest weeks of my life! I'm in Mexico! What the....... Its not even close to South Weber. Well we flew out on Monday morning at 230 AM which was insane! The night before we didn't sleep because we weren't done packing! On the plane I taught this guy Carlos the first lesson in Spanglish and gave him a book of Mormon. He seemed pretty interested so that was cool! We got to the airport and met President Titensor and his wife. They're super nice and don't know Spanish very well so that's kind of nice haha. We slept in the mission home and met our trainers the next day. My trainer is Elder Mendez! He is from Tobasco and does not speak very much English! It's been super awesome though. I understand about half the stuff people say now, so that's cool. The first day it all sounded like straight Chinese! Haha. We were in a members house and this little kid was like "El no entiende nada!" talking about me, Which means "He doesn't understand anything." Which was accurate. It has gotten a lot better though. I love this so much though. The food is sooo good. We usually have one meal a day with members and it has been good every time. The mission rule is that you have to eat all the food which is a struggle. Hahah. Church was awesome this week! Its kind of funny when they sing hymns because Mexicans cant sing apparently. Haha They all just kind of pick their own tune and speed. I love it so much. We have a few investigators that are progressing. A big problem here is people living together and not being married. Also the roads are crazy! No lines, no rules! People go crazy! I kind of like it though. It's been so awesome! I really miss everyone at home, but I love it here too! This has been one of the most humbling experiences of my life and I am so excited for what is to come! Love you guys so much! I know that this church is true and the gospel of Jesus Christ truly was restored through Joseph Smith. It can be kind of sketchy here, but I know that I am in good hands and that I have angels watching over me everywhere I go.

Familia!! What the.... I have been in Mexico for a week! I miss you guys so much. Its crazy over here. I love it so much though!! This is unlike any other place I've ever been! its like Keisel times 20! Hahah Ill tell you more about what I've been up to in the group email. I just wanted to tell you guys that I love you so much. I think and pray about you every day. Man I wish that I spent more time at home during high school haha. Its weird, I usually never get homesick but now I just miss you so much! It's weird though because I really miss you guys tons but it doesn't distract me at all. Elder Mendez and I work really hard and i go to bed exhausted at night. I love it so much, I can't wait til I can communicate with the people more! We're in Xalpa (which is pronounced Halpa) and they haven't had a ton of success lately but we're trying! I love this work so much! I hope all is well! Are Jack and May in school today or next week? Aye yi yi they're getting so old! Jack and May you better write me and tell me how the first week is and how your teachers are. Mom and Dad how was Jack Johnson? I'm so jealous that sounds sweet! Right now I'm in a small house using a computer that I had to pay 30 pasos to use. I love you guys 30 pasos worth. Well I have like 30 emails to write back so I'll send you the group one too. You guys should just reply to this email and we can have a group family email! That would be sweet. This Sunday they had the primary program in church and it was the best. The ninos sang families can be together forever and it made me tear up haha what the fetch, am I grandma Joanne? well I love you lots, and I know that our family can be together forever through Heavenly Fathers Plan. That's the most important thing in my life, and it keeps me going everyday! Love you guys!

Made it to Mexico !!!

Hey I made it to Mexico after a long day of flying! It's awesome here! Everything is so different and the weather is nice! Love you guys!! This is us with president and sister Titensor

Last letter from the MTC

Hey everyone!

I'm really short on time today! It's been a crazy week! My companion found out he probably has lyme disease, so that was a bummer. Good news though, he'll only have to stay at the MTC for 2 to 6 more weeks and then he can leave. Our district is super tight and we're all way stoked to get going on Monday! We did an in field orientation yesterday which was probably the longest day of my entire life haha. I'm so excited to get to Mexico and meet my trainer! I'm going to miss my district though, we're all really tight now! Love you all tons!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Travel plans

What a week at the MTC! We studied soooo much. Hmmm and we got to host for the new missionaries coming in so that was way cool! It's funny to see their faces at first because they're all super nervous and awkward, like I was 4 weeks ago. It's been awesome! I saw Jace Colby and Conner Wright at a devotional this week so that was cool! I'm loving it here! The Spanish is coming slowly but surely. I'm pretty fluent in Spanglish. Hahah. Something way funny happened this week. My companiero Elder Dunne is the technology coordinator for our zone so I go with him to show the other districts how to use the computers to learn Spanish and email the district president. When he was showing them how to email the pres, they were like "what are we supposed to write to him?" So Elder Dunne clicks on his most recent letter to the president and it says "Its going good." and that's all. Hahahaha the new district was so confused. I was trying hard not to laugh. I guess it's not that funny but when your in the MTC and something kinda funny happens it sticks out to ya. i'm loving it though! We got our travel plans! Leaving the MTC August 18 at 2:30 AM to get on the plane! I'm so stoked!!! Well I know that the church is true and the tender mercies of the Lord are all around us! Through the Atonement of Jesus Christ is the only way we can find peace in our lives. I hope everything is going good back at home! Love you all!

Sunday, August 3, 2014

I'm a Mormon

It's interesting the things you do when you are missing your kid.  Today I googled Colton's name..... I found lots of cool stuff, sports scores and racing times, facebook, twitter and instagram.  Most of it, I had seen before, except this.  I am not sure when Colton posted it on,  it might have been for seminary, or church.  I'm not sure.  He never mentioned it to me..... But I think it's special, and thought You might too.  

Colton: high school, family, sports, missionary, Colton Stanger, football, Mormon.

Hi I'm Colton

About Me

I am the second oldest of 4 boys. I was born and raised in Utah where I have lived my whole life so far. As a kid I enjoyed playing almost all sports and being in the outdoors. Growing up, I have had a really good relationship with my family. Throughout most of junior high and high school I was involved in Student Body Office. In high school I played football, tennis, and ran track and cross-country. I took business oriented classes and I think I'm going into business in college. I am just about to graduate, and then I will leave on my LDS mission.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon because I know that Jesus really did take upon himself the pains, afflictions, sicknesses, and temptations of all the people who ever lived. He did this so we can be forgiven of our sins and gain strength through Him. When I was nine my older brother passed away from brain cancer. It was really hard to understand why this would happen to my family. Growing up, I had learned at church that families can be together forever through Heavenly Father's plan. After much praying and reading of the Book of Mormon and Bible, I felt the most amazing feeling of comfort and peace. I know that I will be with my brother again.

How I live my faith

Living my faith is the most rewarding part of my life. As I learn more about Jesus Christ and His teachings, I find myself trying to be a better person. I notice that there are so many people around me that I can be a friend to and help carry their burdens. I am trying to be more like Christ in my attitude and personality towards others. I also live my faith by being involved in church activities. I try to make it to as many functions as I can. I am currently one of the leaders of my age group at church. I help plan and coordinate activities and service for the young men ages 16 to 18. We usually have activities on Wednesday nights where we do service for those in need, play sports, or do other activities.

3 weeks in the MTC

Hola everybody!! It's been a real good week!! Pretty much just studying Spanish all day every day! Our district is getting really tight now! We had a really cool experience this week when the four hermanas in our zone asked for blessings from some of the Elders. It was a super cool experience for everyone and it brought us all really close. I'm so grateful for the priesthood! Our district has 11 people in it with 7 elders and 4 sisters. It's been super cool to get to know all these missionaries. The Spanish is tough but it's kind of starting to click. I'm always surprised when me and elder Dunne get into a lesson and we can communicate with a role play investigator! It's been awesome! Elder Van Tassell and Elder Huxford share a room with us, and we have a ton of fun! They're like the guys back home. I'm so blessed to be where I am right now! It's always nice to go to the temple on p days!! I'll try to send some pictures. We got a new district in our zone this week and it's weird because it feels like they're younger than us, but really it's only 6 weeks so everyones pretty much the same. Haha I'm so grateful for this opportunity to serve!
Elder Stanger

Friday, August 1, 2014

How Great Thou Art

I had a really cool experience on Sunday.  As a zone, we have a sacrament meeting, which is kind of weird with like 35 people, but it's great.  Afterwards, we had Priesthood session.  The closing song was, How Great Thou Art, which is always a good one.  They keep telling us that we have angels behind us, lifting us up because we are serving The Lord.  I know that I have two very special angels behind me all the time, but it have never felt it as strongly as on Sunday.  I couldn't even sing part of the time because I was so overcome.  Then sings my soul, my Savior, God to Thee, How Great Thou Art, How Great Thou Art! It felt like Grandpa was literally in the room and I could give him a hug.  After going to the temple, I understood why he loved that song so much.  I know without a doubt, We will be with them once more.  How lucky are we to have an all knowing Heavenly Father who will put up with our mistakes if we will just turn to His Son.  I'm so thankful for our eternal family.  You're the best parents in the world.  

Sunday, July 27, 2014

It's been a real good week

Hey guys! It's been a real good week. I don't really know what to say on here because I basically do the same thing every day. I'm loving it though! It's been such a weird experience being away from home. A lot of times I wake up and expect to be in my bed, but then I look up and the ceiling is like two feet away from my face. (Gotta love bunkbeds) haha At the MTC you have progressive investigators that are usually teachers, that you spend all your time preparing lessons for them. It's tough because a lot of times you know what you want to say but you just can't say it in Spanish! We've had some really rough lessons that you just walk out of and you feel like the worst, but then you remember that's what the MTC is for so it's okay. :) I sure miss you guys, but I know this is where I'm supposed to be. I'm so lucky to have this opportunity to serve the Lord. The Spanish is coming and I'm having lots of fun. Our district is getting super close! I love those Elders and Hermanas! We have a good time and learn lots. Especially Elder Van Tassel and Huxford. They're our roomates and they're just like my buddies back home. And we're all going to Mexico City together! Love you all! Have a good week!

Thanks so much Dad! Love you lots!! I'm glad you guys are having fun. Mom is the best. I love all the dear elders and stuff. It makes my day. I'm glad you guys are doing good! I miss you. Thanks for always being a good example for me! Things get kind of crazy in the District sometimes! we're locked up in this tiny room for like 15 hours a day and sometimes everyone just wants to talk. So I just say necesitamos estudiar! and people start studying again. Haha I love these Elders and Hermanas so much! We're really good friends now and they know I love them so they're super respectful when I have to do district leader stuff like that. Have a good week at lava! Tell Jack and May I love them and to have a fun week at lava!

Madre!! Hey hope you're having a good time up in lava! I got your package yesterday! thanks so much! It was awesome! I miss lava. That's always such a good time hanging out with you guys! We have a pretty awesome family! Glad you're having a good time! I gotta figure out how to upload pictures on here and maybe I'll send some today! I don't even know what to say, we basically do the same thing everyday! Our district is getting pretty tight! They're all awesome elders and Hermanas! I'll send out a big group email though and talk more. I just love you guys though! I love getting your dear elders and letters and packages all the time. It doesn't even make me homesick! I just hope you're all doing good. I'm staying sooo busy. Elder Dunne is a character. He falls asleep in every study session haha it can be kind of tough but at the end of the day you just gotta say hey bud wake up we gotta work in a loving way. Haha I love it here. I trying my best to get better everyday.

Sunday, July 20, 2014


Man it has been a crazy good week!! Everyone says that the days are like weeks and the weeks are like days, and it's so true! I love the MTC! The Spanish is hard but great! Me and Elder Dunne have taught four lessons in Spanish! We can usually get our point across so that's good! Still working on conjugating and all that stuff. I love it! Our district is getting way close! We're all way good friends now after sitting in class like 16 hours a day! Our schedule is pretty routine. It goes like this: Breakfast, class, gym time, lunch, class, dinner, class, go to bed. So if you're ever wondering what I'm doing, it's pretty safe to assume that I'm in class trying to learn Spanish from Hermano Ream. He's way cool! He got back from his mission a few years ago and now he teaches at the MTC so that's pretty sweet. On Tuesdays We have a devotional at 7 PM at the Marriot center with the people from the main campus. A lot of times a general authority talks. Tuesday it was an ex area seventy who talked about prayer. It was sweet! We also have devotional Sunday nights with our zone! I love it so much. And P day is Saturday! Today we went and did a session at the Provo temple! I love the temple. It's such an awesome way to get away from all your worries for a minute. I'm having such a great time. This week on Thursday I went down to Salt Lake with my roommates Elder Huxford and Elder Van Tassell to go to the Mexican consulate and get our visas! It was so sweet! We were walking down the streets of south Salt Lake in a pack of 20 Elders! It's crazy how people stare at you! It was a good reminder that I have been called to represent Jesus Christ and to share His gospel! It made me want to be better! We rode the frontrunner from Provo, which was way cool. We were talking to a bunch of people we didn't know. It's so much easier to talk to people in English!! Hahah I don't even know! I just want to go out there and talk to people about the gospel right now! It's been fun though. I have loved getting letters and dear elders from you guys! I'm glad you're doing good! I'm really not even homesick or anything. I miss you guys lots but I know this is what I need to be doing! I'll send some pictures next week because this week I didn't take any! Love you guys!

-Elder Stanger (or Elder Stranger because that's what everyone else calls me.) Haha whenever anyone reads my name tag that's what they say, so it just stuck. haha

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Hola Familia

Hola Familia!
The MTC has been crazy! it is literally non stop work. The Spirit is always so strong! We are on the west campus which is super nice! We get to stay in BYU student housing so that's nice. Our air conditioner is broken in our dorm so it's like 85 degrees at night so it's kind of sweaty but that's okay. :) We spend most of our time in the classroom learning Spanish. It can be kind of frustrating because the teacher will only speak Spanish. He goes slow and repeats things when you ask though so it's not too bad! I feel like I'm picking up a lot of stuff though! My companion is Elder Dunne. He is from Georgia, has 4 sisters and was home schooled. He is a way nice person and a little shy. He has less previous Spanish experience than me so it's kind of tough for us to share the gospel. Yesterday we taught our first investigator in Spanish! It was a struggle and definitely humbled us. So far we can pray and share our testimonies in Spanish and barely communicate otherwise. We are getting there though. :) On Thursday we were supposed to meet our branch president but he was gone so some other MTC trainers came in and talked to our district. (My district has three sets of elders and 2 sets of hermanas.) We each stood up and said where we are from, where we're going and a little bit about ourselves. Afterwards they asked me to be the District Leader. I'm stoked for this opportunity to serve my district. I am feeling a little overwhelmed but I love it here! I know it is where I am supposed to be! I love the gospel and I know that Jesus Christ lives. This experience at the MTC is definitely helping me deepen my conversion! I can't wait to get to Mexico and share the gospel with others! Love you all!
-Elder Stanger

Write a Missionary

I've had a few people ask me about Dear Elder.  It is a great site that prints and delivers letters to missionaries the same day they are written.  The great thing about this service,  is that Colton will get your letter the same day you write it, he won't have to wait until P day to read emails, and he will have a physical copy of your letter that he can read, or re read any time.  And best of all, it's free.  I have included the instructions below.  So, if you don't have time to hand write a letter, or want to save postage, Dear Elder is a great alternative.  I've even sent him a few from my cell phone.  It's really easy, and after you enter his information the first time, or register an account.... it saves it for you.  Remember, when choosing his mission.  Select PROVO WEST MTC - not Mexico City. 

1. Write a letter
2. Provo West MTC
3. Write a Missionary
4. Enter your information, and Colton's which is
Elder Colton Stanger
Unit 819  MEX-MEXN  AUG 18
Colton's contact information
Elder Colton Warren Stanger
2023 N. 900 E. Unit 819
Provo Utah 84602
Unfortunately, Colton ran out of time to get very many people's email addresses.  If you would like to receive his group emails, please send me your email address, or leave a comment below, and I would be glad to add you, or email Colton, so he can save and have your email address and write you back.
Thanks for your love and support of Colton.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Times ticking

It's hard to believe that Colton will be leaving so soon.  We are going to miss that kid more than words can say..... But in the meantime, we are having a blast together. Today the boys did ifly, flowrider, and we had family pictures taken.  Making the most of the time we have left, because tomorrow, Colton will be ordained a missionary!

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Come Join With Us.

Colton's farewell was beautiful!  He shared with us one of his favorite conference talks by President Uchtdorf - Come Join With Us.  Thank you to everyone who came afterwards and shared lunch with us.  What a blessing friends and family are in our lives.  We love you all.