The lighthouse at Formentor, Mallorca

The background shows sidewalk tiles - "rajoles" - that pave the sidewalks throughout Barcelona. They were designed by architect Puig i Cadafalch for the entryway of a home. Since 1915, they have been used by the city to pave sidewalks, and have become emblematic of the city. One of the city's most famous chocolatiers, Enric Rovira, produces chocolate bars in the shape and design of these tiles.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Holiday Arrival

Hna. Kline received her visa in December, traveled to Madrid, and was able to complete her paperwork there. She arrived in Barcelona on the 27th where she was met at the train station by Pte. and Hna. Hinckley and Hnas. Snow, Stosich and Ruz.

From the station we made the traditional pilgramage to Montjuic where Hna. Kline and her new companion, Hna. Snow, posed with Hna. Hinckley:

From Montjuic it was off to the mission home for a brief orientation, then to her new assignment in Hospitalet. She was out working before the day was over!

A very warm welcome to the wonderful Hna. Kline!

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Blanca Navidad

On Christmas day we were surprised by carolers a the front door.: Elders Keller, Southwick, Corbitt and Hadley, along with our friend Archie from Barrio 2!

Then in the afternoon we drove down to Tarragona to attend a baptism service. Hno. Leal, whose wife has prayed fervently that he would someday accept the gospel, was baptized by his father-in-law. Elders Close and Benito had been working with him for several weeks, so it was a happy day for them, too!

A White Christmas!

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Christmas Conference - Barcelona

Finally, a few photos from the last and largest of the Christmas Conferences. The Zones of Barcelona, Baleares, Hospitalet and Lleida all met together in the Hospitalet Stake Center for a wonderful conference, with a meal again provided largely by the incredible Hna. Belnap.

Feeding the Five Thousand

Hermanas are awesome!

Los Hadley and Hna. Lund enjoying lunch!
Elder Hadley y los Thompson
Los Hinckley, los Ayudantes, y Joseph

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas Conference - Valencia

On Thursday we packed the van back up with food, mail, supplies, and headed south for zone conference in Valencia.

In December the citrus groves are filled with ripe fruit, and fresh oranges and clementines are available in all the little produce shops.

Hnas. Nalbandyan and Roerig add music to the kitchen while Elder Belnap takes a break from cooking
As is our tradition, each district had 20 minutes to create a skit and 5 minutes to present their skit. We have some very talented missionaries...
Elder Anstensen ("Aladin") rides his flying carpet - thanks to Elders Bowers and Monks
Each missionary brought a gift (something white) for the gift exchange. After choosing a gift, all missionaries opened their package at the same time shared their newly-acquired prizes!

Hna. Hinckley enjoys the gifts!
But more than fun, we had a wonderful, spiriutally uplifting conference where we felt the true spirit of Christmas!
The Valencia Zone - Christmas 2010 - ¡Bones Festes!

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Christmas Conference - Vitoria

The first of our Christmas Conferences was held in the beautiful city of Vitoria in the Basque Country. We took the mission van, the Ayudantes, Elder and Hna. Belnap, and a truck load of food, mail, and missionary supplies, and headed up the Autopista to Vitoria on Monday!

Elders  Taylor, Rasmussen, Johnson, and Johansen walking to the chapel

Elders Jimenez and Southwick help out in the kitchen

 Hnas. Roberts, Culverwell, Boone and Bennion

As long as Hna. Culverwell was modeling her Christmas hat, we decided to do the same! Pte. Hinckley with Elders Jimenez and Southwick.

 The entire zone on a clear, crisp day in Vitoria! Eguberri On! Merry Christmas!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Transfer week. It began with final interviews with Hna. Church and Elder Reynolds on Monday afternoon, followed by our month-end conference call with all of the zone leaders.

We had 12 missionaries who were originally scheduled to arrive, but two of them (Hna. Kline and Elder Littlefield are still waiting for visas). And another two were delayed a day. So on Tuesday morning eight wonderful new missionaries arrived at Estacio Sants.

Elders Thompson, Keeler, Krosnoselsky, Benito, Pte y Hna Hinckley,
Hnas Nalbandyan and Boone
Hauling the luggage to the van
At Montjuic
From Montjuic we came back to the mission home for lunch, orientation, and interviews before assigning the missionaries to their new trainers. We then spent some time together in training before everyone left with their companions to find, teach and baptize!

Elder Thompson and Elder Wedemeyer

Hna. Boone and Hna. Bennion

Elders Close and Benito

Hnas. Nalbandyan and Roerig

Elders Close and Krasnoselsky

Elders Keeler and Bennington
No sooner were the new missionaries off with their new companions than it was time for dinner and a farewell testimony meeting with Hna. Church and Elder Reynolds. Elder Reynolds parents joined us for the dinner and meeting at the mission home. After the meeting it was off to Plaza Catalunya for "Singing for the Angels," our traditional farewell and contacting event. Elder Reynolds left in the custody of his parents - we miss him already.

Early Wednesday morning we headed out to the airport with Hna. Church to bid her farewell and send her off to the next great stage in her life!

At BCN with the incredible Hna. Church
Usually, transfers are over when we come home from the airport, but no so this week. On Wednesday afternoon we received two more amazing missionaries: Elder Araujo and Elder Matthews! It was dark by the time we arrived at Montjuic, but it was a beautiful winter night.

Elders Roos and Araujo, Elders Gerber and Matthews 
In the castle entry at Montjuic
Elders Gerber and Matthews point out Pamplona
Elders Araujo and Roos point out Martorell
 By late evening on Wednesday transfers were over. Just in time to prepare for mission council on Friday!

Thanksgiving Dinner

Last year we spent Thanksgiving week doing a mission tour with Elder Kopischke. As we were walking into the Valencia chapel on Thanksgiving morning, Elder Kopischke turned over to us and asked, "Is today the Thanksgiving holiday in the United States?" We had a spiritual feast and a wonderful Thanksgiving!

This year we were in Barcelona with no conflicting meetings, so together with the couples put on a real Thanksgiving dinner. The Deweys (who work of the U.S. State Department) provided canned cranberry, the couples cooked up wonderful dressing, potatoes, gravy, sweet potato pie, the works! With the help of the invaluable Carolina, Hna. Hinckley ordered and cooked a 10 kilo turkey from the local poultry shop in the neighborhood mercat, and the feast was complete!

Hna. Hadley brings out the rolls!
10 kilos of turkey
The feast
We have much to be thankful for this year - 4 great couples and 92 wonderful young missionaries, hundreds of new converts, and daily miracles! Happy Thanksgiving from the Spain Barcelona Mission!

Friday, December 3, 2010

Ward Party

Our ward, like most wards in Spain, loves a party! The annual "Concurso de Pasteles" - dessert contest - in Barrio 2 is always a big event. The missionaries, always competitive, prepared a very creative entry:

Elders Parry, Southwick and Raban show off their cakes

As great as the "Libro de Mormon" cake was, it took second place to a delicious banana pie made by the Relief Society President...