Merida, Yucatán, Mexico Temple

Temple #87
Mérida, Yucatán, Mexico 
March 30, 2018

     Yucatán Peninsula here we come! We had a ten day vacation from teaching with ILP and we decided to spend it mostly in the Yucatán. We left our house at 7:00 in the evening with Sergio our coordinator and we drove to Queretaro. 
      After saying goodbye to one of our favorite Mexicans, Sergio, we went inside to get a bus ticket. Last time we did this there were tons of options of bus departures. This time though we got there and were saddened to hear that we had one option left, and it left at 1:30 in the morning. We had a flight out of Mexico City at 6:05 and would be arriving there by bus at 4:30. 
     We were a little nervous and worried that somehow there would be a delay and we would miss the flight, but we knew everything would work out. We realized we were actually really lucky because there was only one bus option and only four seats left, none of which were by each other. So we got our tickets and got on our bus after waiting five hours at the bus station. 
     We slept on the bus and we were happy to arrive at the airport on time. We checked in and went through security all within ten minutes and we knew the Lord was making things work for us after everything had gone smoothly, although it appeared as if it wouldn't. 
     We got to Mérida at 8:00 and went straight to the temple, using Uber to get a ride. The temple was right in the center of town but as we were driving to it we couldn't see it at all. The streets were unique with old and colorful buildings lining each one. It wasn't until we were immediately in front of the temple that we could see it. 
     We made it to the temple and we were so excited! We hopped out of the car and instantly began taking photos; it was beautiful! It had a large wall around the grounds and large gates in the front which was why we couldn't see it until we got there. It's very protected and gated and so we felt even more safe there. 
     We got pictures of the Bougainville bushes, which are bushes with beautiful fuchsia colored leaves that look like flowers. They encircle the temple along with some palm trees and others plants and flowers, making the white building stand out even more. 

     We got our pictures in front of the temple, right in front of the sign, trying to do a new pose. The security guards at the front gate laughed at us as they watched us take our photos but we laughed as well. 
     We went into the temple and the Temple President welcomed us and helped us out. We changed into our white clothes and went to a sealing room instead of the endowment room. The temple is a small, cookie cutter temple like most in Mexico, other than Mexico City and Tijuana, but the Temple President changed things up by having us meet in a sealing room. 
     The sealing room was beautiful and peaceful as I first got there and was alone for fifteen minutes. It gave me time to ponder and pray and feel the spirit and peace in the temple. Even with all the chaos of traveling and making sure everything goes right, it's easy to feel peace at the temple. 
     Everyone who was doing the session sat in the sealing room and then the Temple President, in Spanish of course, talked for about five minutes about the priesthood and the temple blessings, from what I could make out in Spanish. It was a neat experience and changed it up a little. 
      We went into the first ordinance room where a wonderfully painted mural of jungles and waterfalls were. We did the session, tried to stay awake although we had roughly only three hours of sleep that night, and then got to the Celestial room where we hugged, kissed and enjoyed the peace there. Although we were both exhausted, hungry (it was 12:00 now and we hadn't had breakfast or lunch), sleepy and even cold in the temple, we enjoyed the entire thing and we were so happy to have gone. 
     Afterwards we sat on a bench and had some bread and bananas we had brought with us. We enjoyed the temple grounds, talked to some missionaries who were there for a zone conference, and then walked around the temple. There was a church building next to it along with a distribution center which had two mango trees next to it. 
     We walked around Mérida which is a fun city. The buildings are colorful and the streets were busy. There's lots of museums to go to but most of the fun stuff is miles away in the jungles so we didn't do anything else. We went to our hostel, which was interesting but cheap, and then went to sleep early knowing we had to get up at 5:00 to get to our morning bus to Chichen Itzá! 
     We had a great time at the temple and were so happy to have started our vacation by going there. It was the perfect way to start our vacation and we couldn't wait to get to the next temple! We had other things to do though, like go to a Mayan temple, and we were still excited for that. We left Mérida, saying goodbye to the temple as we passed it on the way to the bus station. Everything had worked according to our plans so far and we couldn't wait to see how the rest of the ten day vacation went! 


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