Thursday, September 17, 2015

9/14/15 Seven Baptismal Dates Set!

I'm super excited about general conference. This is going to be my third one in the mission already so that's pretty weird. Of course I remember patriarch Baugh, that's awesome that he's going to be temple president. Is there another stake patriarch now?  How many stakes are there in the temple district? Why is it that our stake gets so many in the presidency? haha

I finally have an area in Lima haha I'm in the ward Gamarra in the zone El Trebol.  It's a really small zone, just 14 missionaries and no sisters in the whole zone. We have 7 baptismal dates so far with 3 of those for the 26th: K____, a single mother and her daughter B_______ as well as D___ the wife of a less active member named D_____ who is obviously in the reactivation process and we are seeing what we can do about making it so he can baptize his wife.

My companion is Elder Neira from Santiago Chile, he came into the mission in the same group as Elder Troll so he has about 7 months and is a hard worker and a good teacher so this should be great!

It's weird going to church and seeing more than 50 people there on Sunday! haha It's a much larger ward here. Both my companion and I were taken out of our last area and president decided to turn back into just one area in that branch again.

In general life is different here in Lima than in the provincial parts of Peru, like there are two supermarkets within reasonable distance of our area here, while there in Huaraz and Pativilca we had a to go a pretty good distance to get to one, the people are somewhat more wealthy here. The transfer was good I'm finally out of the boonies haha.
And there are a lot more jobs and stuff. it's just a more comfortable lifestyle here but there's still no carpet except in the church nursery room haha  We have a pentionist that fills me until I can barely walk!

His new companion...

To his dad:
Elder Bednar might mention us. He said in the meeting that it has been a while since he's been in that big a group of missionaries. Our mission president was saying that he had another meeting with stake presidencies and bishoprics around here in Lima and that the questions and responses by the audience were far better in the meeting with missionaries and Elder Bednar referred to our meeting as the highlight of the trip.  I too, thought it was a really great meeting!

9/7/15 Transfers

(I told Chad that one of my friends asked for a Book of Mormon and that I had marked some of my favorite scriptures. I asked him which scriptures he would suggest I mark.)  
One of my favorite scriptures is Alma 7:11-13 but it depends, is it a mom like you? If so, you could include Alma 56:47-48... of course the most important is always Moroni 10:3-5 and your personal testimony of that promise!
That's awesome, mom!! The missionaries must be super happy!

Yep, I'm leaving my area and so is my companion. Pretty weird. We can never be certain why President Archibald does the things he does but I'm confident it's by revelation!

I did get your package and I was super happy. One of the other elders was trying really hard to convince me to give him my socks haha Thank you very much for the package, a few of the Latinos in our district got to try root beer barrels for the first time in their life so that was good. I haven't tried on the pants yet so I am not sure if they fit, but they're clean at least. haha

The talks Elder Bednar asked us to read were: Ask with Faith, Seek Knowledge by Faith, and Converted unto the Lord. The main focus was learning to be agents who act, or doers of the word not just hearers. Seek Knowledge by Faith is especially good for teaching the gospel but I suppose learning and teaching the gospel is his expertise anyway.

I'm glad I got to find out about the whole situation with Everett after he's home from the hospital and he's okay. That's scary. Well, we can clearly see how our Heavenly Father is watching over us, and especially those little ones and the importance for each of us to be in tune with and attentive to the Spirit, what a blessing!

(Pictures this week!)

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

8/31/15 Elder Bednar Came to Speak!

Thursday was also K----'s birthday, she was turning twelve so they had some kind of young women's celebration. We were near the church Saturday evening and my comp had to go to the bathroom so we stopped by the church and they gave me a piece of cake while we were there. that's the extent of my celebration, haha (referring to his year mark)

On Thursday we met a very interesting man who was trying to Bible bash us but apparently he has not read Paul's epistle to the Hebrews. He is part of a religion who call themselves "Israelites", they believe Christ is the Son of God but they think it is still necessary to obey the law of Moses, that is to say they still perform burnt offerings. They also believe in a prophet from here in Peru. There are quite a few of them here in Pativilca. 

Anyway, on Wednesday we had the meeting with Elder Bednar! Our mission president told us to be extremely reverent, that we should not approach him unless invited and if we were to be invited to do so, to be extremely cordial and so that means no selfies or shaking hands. Once Elder Bednar stood up and began talking the first thing he said was not to take notes of what he says. He said that when we do take notes in meetings to take them like the small plates not the large plates with a "secular history of the meeting" and that they must be notes of what was not said, but only the impressions of the Spirit. He then began to ask inspired questions about the talks by him we were asked to study beforehand, then switched to inspired questions about his manner of asking inspired questions and making sure that those he is teaching are agents unto themselves and active participants in the learning process. He then switched it up and had us ask him questions with a preface explaining how the questions must be very specific to the time, place, and person. The first question then asked was such that it didn't require specifically Elder Bednar to answer it therefore he asked Elder Waddell of the 70 (who was also there) to answer it. One of the better questions had to do with what worried him most in what he can see with his time and experience as an apostle and he answered with the word "steadfastness."  He then explained... with the example of how everyone wants to know when a new temple is being built... when they start construction people are coming and taking pictures with their family outside the temple every week and when it is finally dedicated they are sure to be the first ones there on the Tuesday when it opens. He went on to say that there is a huge excitement about going to the temple.. for a while.  He then said get yourself a cheap paperback copy of The Book of Mormon and read the whole thing through studying very carefully, and every time you see any variation of the word steadfastness take copious notes. Then after finishing The Book of Mormon write a 1 page summary of steadiness based on your notes. Write on the spine of the book " steadfastness 1and put the summary inside and put in a bookshelf. Do it again. " Steadfastness 2", without ever taking a glance at your notes from the first time. He said to just keep going with that same thing over and over. He said that he has a bookshelf filled with copies of The Book of Mormon like that and his children have asked him a thousand times if they can read them and he says "if you touch them I will kill you" and they ask if they can have them when he's dead and he says "with my last dying breath I will burn every last one of those books and you will never touch them" because "they can't get anything from what I received from the spirit, but I will get them a book shelf and some copies of The Book of Mormon"
He also said "Would you like to know what Christ would say matters to most to Him?" and then said to study the Gospels paying close attention to every time that He says "my hour is near at hand" (which means "I'm going to die soon") and pay attention to what He teaches next because obviously that is going to be what is most important. He then explained that in the New Testament the first thing he does after that is institute the ordinance of the sacrament and that in 3rd Nephi he gives the authority and teaches the the manner of baptism. He resumed it saying that if we asked Christ what matters to him he'd say "ordinances matter to me" so obviously your work in the temple is extremely important mom!
love you. chao

To his dad:
It looks like a really nice house that Devin and Diana bought, that's really good. I'm glad to hear you had a good birthday. It sounds like a fun setup for the youth, meeting with Canyon Springs ward! Yes, I definitely think I'll be going next week. (transfers)
gracias por todo les amo chao

8/27/15 Hump Day!!!

 1 Year ago today "Elder Bergquist" 
flew to the MTC  in Mexico City!!!

8/24/15 Get Your Converts to the Temple!

haha The girls stayed at our house and the boys at the O'Connors? That's the first time that could have been possible, since we have always had a house full of boys! That's pretty weird!

Did Julie need a map to know where in the world her mission is? haha But, seriously, that's really cool that she has decided to go on a mission! She'll be a great missionary.

That sounds like a fun FHE. 

What's Chubola? It sounds like Spanish, but I don't recognize it... or are you saying chub-ball? haha

What's it like working in the temple? Were you able to share some kind of experience with them about that?

So on Saturday we had a stake meeting with an area 70 and our mission president. They were talking about ward councils and the real goal that we need to have with any investigator or convert or less active is, of course the temple sealing. He also mentioned that when a woman is baptized on a Saturday, she can be confirmed Sunday, and he mentioned that the temple is closed Monday (so they can have their family home evenings in the spirit world, haha) and, she can do baptisms for the dead on Tuesday, just having to wait three days! A man needs the Aaronic Priesthood to do baptisms for the dead, so he has to wait 9 days. He said I don't know what we are waiting for... we need to get a new convert to their father's house!

We are going to have a training with Elder Bednar on Wednesday! Our mission president is being really emphatic with us on how we need to behave ourselves during that training. Like today after playing soccer, the zone leaders were giving us all the details about the training...  like we'll be leaving at 5 am for Lima and we'll be there with a couple of other missions. They said this is the Peru Lima West mission: the best in the area so we will sit as a zone and be studying the scriptures before he comes in.

A few weeks ago we were told about a new system on the missionary website where you can look for referrals that come from the church offices.  I set it all the way back to 2005 when it began and there were no referrals for our area...
se me olvidó. les amo y nos vemos

To his dad:
Before I forget: happy birthday y feliz cumpleaños. My convert, L_____'s daughter turns twelve on the same day as your birthday. 

Wow. it is true that we can be taken at any time and we must not delay the day of our repentance. I'm sorry for those losses and am confident that they are just in the MTC a little early to start sharing the gospel as they had planned to do here.

I hope you guys have fun with Everett in your family home evening and that all is going well there. What are the names of the new converts? It sounds like sacrament meeting will be full of new faces when I get home, that is great!

nos vemos. les amo. chao

8/17/15 P-day Adventures

Well, if that way off in the far distant future wife agrees, it looks like I'll use the name Finn. Leif would have been cool, like Leif Erikson the guy who really discovered America (well after Lehi but way before Columbus) so why Everett Nolan? 8lbs 8 oz that's double what I was! I'll have to find out what that is in kilos to tell people who ask around here haha 
I now have three nephews and 2 nieces, that's weird! I feel like Holland was just born. What do Marleigh and Weston think of having a little brother? Does anyone else in the family have August 16th for their birthday? 

That sounds like a fun youth activity you had with the Vegas youth! Why didn't our youth go to the temple? When did they have to leave from Vegas to get here and do all that?

We have found a few people to teach, one of them is a man in a wheel chair who's named C_____ and asks lots of questions. Sometimes he takes it off topic but he seems like a pretty intelligent guy, I'm anxious to see where that goes. 

We also found a pretty good family, but the parents aren't legally married because the mom had some mistake in her last name on her ID or something and couldn't get married without a long legal process and the dad works everyday until about 7 pm at which point they open up the front room in their house as a restaurant from 8 until about 10 so that may be a little difficult.

Today for p-day our district went to the "Fortaleza de Paramonga" (fortress of Paramonga, Paramonga is a city nearby) It's ruins of a city or I guess a fortress here.

So the heel of my shoe was scraping my heel and took off a little skin and I was trying to fix it and my comp said yeah just switch shoes with me, so we did. He said I wear my shoes laced too tight... so anyway, we ended up with one of each shoe and as Elder Quispe would say, "Estamos en Perú pe"!

It was also my branch mission leader's birthday so we stopped by there for some cake on our way back to our rooms to get changed.

Sunday, August 16, 2015

8/10/15 Elder Bednar is coming!

Everett still hasn't come? What? Does he want to beat Weston in weight or something?

Sounds like a fun family reunion, that's a nice truck Uncle Lane's got!  It that looks like a good time. Mafia until 4:30 am?  Wow, I guess that would explain the migraine!

For lunch we get a plate full of rice, a piece of chicken or some other meat but usually chicken, a little bit of avocado salad, and some potatoes or beans, plus some kind of juice or herbal drink that they refer to as agua (water), it also comes with soup but I'd say you could also translate it as broth because it's pure liquid. I usually order it without soup since I get overly full from the rice anyway.  It is less than 2 dollars, closer to $1.50 so it's pretty cheap. Food here is really cheap like you can get a banana from a street vendor for 20 centimos which would be about 6 cents haha There are also pick up trucks full of bananas that go around with loud speakers yelling out that they're selling bananas which is weird because I haven't even seen any banana palms around here so I don't know where they get the bananas to sell haha

They said the change in the order of meetings was to get better sacrament meeting attendance but i don't know how well that will work out. 

I'd shout it off the rooftops (the good word) but I think the roofs would break since they're mostly made out of bamboo sheets haha

The baptism fell through.

Yeah, my comp and I get along well. We found a really nice family that are very excited about learning more about the gospel but they have the problem of not actually being married... we were hoping to helping them to change that but we were made aware that that won't work out because the lady's mother has two different official identifications.... so now neither of her names come up in the computers so basically she doesn't officially exist!  So... they can't get married until that is resolved...

We were eating on Sunday at a member's house and while they were cooking she brought us packets of an off-brand version of Ritz crackers... the name of them made my companion laugh so hard!  Here's a picture of them.

To his dad:
Here the missionaries are pretty much the only ones that talk in ward council and we are told to go in the order of converts, less actives, then investigators.

No, I the package you sent has not arrived yet but the ZLs would have to get it from the mission offices first.

I hope Cody does pathways.

Did Weston really behave for 12 hours in the car or was that sarcasm?

We just found out that Elder Bednar is going to be coming soon!! The whole mission will be able to go the training he's doing!  Our MP is telling us we have to be extremely disciplined when he comes and he also told us that Elder Bednar likes to do Q&A  so we should be thinking about what questions we can ask him related to the work we are currently doing. I am really excited to hear him speak!

8/3/15 A Child of God

Chaufa is like brown rice with lots of oil and small pieces of chicken, egg, carrots and other little vegetables. The chicken is normal grilled chicken.

We don't have a pentionist here, we just eat at little restaurants which are like 5 soles for lunch (a little less than 2 dollars). 

If they don't name him Finnigan, I call it. haha

This Sunday the district made some changes; in the branch  presidency, elders quorum and the relief society and so forth. Our converts finally got callings! l_____ as second councilor in the relief society and E____ as second councilor in the young women's presidency. Also the branch now has the schedule reversed with priesthood first, Sunday school next, and sacrament meeting last.

We were visiting some less actives the other day and one of the sons, A_____, a 7 year old, started pointing at me and saying "you scare me" "go away" "you look like a new year's doll, they should burn you" (referencing the fact that they burn scarecrow dolls at New Years)  I really didn't know what to say, I was just like, "sorry!"  hahaha

We were teaching the Articles of Faith with E____ and she started asking questions about the creation so we decided to have a small lesson to help her to understand the second paragraph of the family proclamation with the end purpose as found in Doctrine and Covenants 132.  When she fully understood that she is not a creation of God, but his child she started tearing up and said I don't have anymore questions - I understand now!  Then yesterday we got to Article 10 and she started asking about the second coming and temples so now we'll be explaining that!

Our branch mission leader fell of a motorcycle and broke his collarbone so we drew on his cast haha 

To his dad:
How long are your ward council meetings and how often do you have them? Here in South America Northwest Elder Uceda asked us to start having ward council meetings every week, so President Archibald always talks about how the only good reason for having ward council every week is if we baptize every week and he talks about the plans that we have to have for baptizing every week. 

7/27/15 Reading The Book of Mormon as a Mission

You counted right, it is transfers but I am staying and my companion is too. Our district leader is being transferred but no one else in the district.

Orange chicken sounds pretty good right now haha, that's one thing they don't have here.  They have like two types of Chinese food which is called chaufa.

I am not sure where the name Everette comes from but Finnigan is super sweet I will definitely call him Finn haha (if I remember right I think "Finn, King of Finland" was on our family history way back on dad's patriarchal line haha)

Yes he went to church but he had to go for something after sacrament meeting. In the afternoon we taught him and then brought him to the elders quorum's birthday which a bunch of the branch was at (shown in the pictures) it was a good opportunity to fellowship him and he had a good time. His foot is fine I think it wasn't actually a nail so much as a pin or something.

Also as a mission we are reading The Book of Mormon in language study (the Latinos in English and the gringos in Spanish  with the plan to finish within 6 months) and are currently in the Isaiah chapters. 

les amo. nos vemos

This picture is from the birthday party.

Saturday, July 25, 2015

7/20/15 A Commitment with God

Weston is 4 already? Wow.

Well one of the references, A_____, could work out!  We were able to teach him but I think some of the pastors around here traumatize people because he was unwilling to let us start the lesson with a prayer because he felt it would be like making a commitment with God, (I'm just talking about us saying a prayer with him not even him saying it) and "you can't joke around with God" because if he then fails to do what God says later he'll be damned.  It was a little difficult to get him to understand that prayer is a communication with his Father who loves him and won't do anything like that.

E____'s sister doesn't have a lot of time because of her work, but we have an appointment with her this Tuesday.
We also met a super cool guy named S_____ S_______ (we just call him S_______) He does super cool origami sculptures!  He showed us a phoenix he had made (but was broken) at the beginning of the first lesson so we used it as an object lesson for the apostasy.  We put a baptismal date for the 15th of August and he is super animated about it, he even shook my companion's hand when he put the baptismal date as if it were an official agreement!  He even said the opening and closing prayer in our second lesson with him.
When we went to his house Sunday morning to take him to church he had a bandage wrapped around his foot and said he had stepped on a nail that morning.  He said it hurt to walk but if we got a mototaxi he'd go with us to church, so we did. We had a lesson with him that afternoon and he commented that his foot was feeling a little bit better at the end of church. (he also said he got an injection, presumably for tetanus, so don't worry we're not exacerbating medical problems here).

(We have to mail him new baptismal pants and I asked him what else he would like) In the packet, I guess candies and stuff maybe chips ahoy because they have those here but they are completely different haha I don't know I can't think of anything in particular I need.

Oh and that picture is from an activity we did with the primary where they got little missionary badges and went with us to visit some less actives. There were 6 kids there but afterwards we were trying to get to an appointment quick and my companion was realized he wanted a picture with them so we got back to the church like 10 min later and some of them had already gone so there's only 3 in the picture. 

To his dad:
(Referring to the how many grandkids Brad's dad has) 
Just the grand children is more then my branch's sacrament meeting attendance here hahaha
Mosiah 18 is a good one! I like the way that Alma is kind of like "so if you believe this stuff there's some water here why don't cha get baptized?" haha but with more words than maybe I'd say it. It's a good thing that we have the scriptures, prophets are a little better at wording things than I am haha
claro gracias por el apoyo y amor chao

Saturday, July 18, 2015

7/13/15 Noah's Ark

(I was telling Chad about our family reunion this year.)

That's pretty weird having only 4 from our family at the reunion this year! There are some new faces in the picture, I am assuming they belong to Aunt Jennifer and Uncle Greg, I haven't met them, in fact, I haven't even seen any pictures of them! Why is Cayla moving to Hawaii?

Dad did the polar bear? Originally, it was just them taking a bath there at night, right?  

If Brittany is still thinking about names refer her to 2 Nephi 18:1 or Isaiah 8:1

I thought Krew was scared of the word bear!  Like when dad would say there are bears outside and he would start to cry...

So, this week with my convert E____, we did this Noah's ark thing we do where you mention that in the scriptures it says that the Lord himself had to close up the ark and make them imagine themselves as Noah standing there in the doorway as the rain starts to fall and you see all of your family, friends and neighbors outside the ark who are going to die and we tell her the time is short until the Lord comes and closes the door for the last time.  We ask her who are are the 8 family or friends who she would invite into the ark with her. It only took her about 45 seconds to tell us, she barely had to think about it because she really has felt the difference the gospel has made in her life!

On a side note, the mother of one of the references was looking for something to Bible bash about and she asked us how we feel about Deuteronomy 22, I said, I haven't gotten around to memorizing the Law of Moses since Christ fulfilled it.  Apparently, it says, among other things that women can't wear men's clothes so for that reason they are not allowed to wear pants.  I guess that is one more thing to be thankful for in the true church, haha

(I asked him to take more pictures and he said the following)  It is against the rules, in fact in a recent zone meeting the ZLs said we shouldn't have our cameras with us in general unless it is pday... and if i ask for other times to be able to take pictures MP would probably say if you baptize every week you'd have pictures every week so yeah... haha

Family home evening with with a bunch of the branch in a converts home...
To his dad:
You shot a 77? Wow
There's a girl's team at canyon now? How many are on the golf teams? 
Don't expect a long report from me either haha but yeah I've really realized how important families are on the mission one certainly sees the effect of not having a family of the sort that the prophets teach about.
64 great grandchildren? Is that just those who were there or in general?

6/30/15 That reminds me...

You sent me a video of Whitney and Abby and when I watched it I was like, "Wow Whitney is super old now haha and who is that next to her?" and sat there for like a minute and a half thinking "Who the heck is that?" and then just went "wait what..." How old are those kids? 
But I think part of the reason is that a less active family with a 6 or 7 year old daughter named K____ (or I would spell it that way maybe it's actually spelled Q____ or something haha I'd have to ask haha) has a daughter who looks, acts, and talks exactly like Abby did when she was little!

About the spelling... that reminded me of the daughter of one of our investigators is named Paige but I could not figure out how you could spell that name in Spanish since the "j" sound doesn't independently exist in Spanish it's just one of a bunch of different ways to pronounce "y" which around here is normally pronounced like the English "y" until I saw a notebook with her name on it written "Peich" and thought "why does that have the English word for durazno?" and realized "oh that's her name" haha

Wow Holland is walking pretty well in that video which reminds me of the daughter of L_____ named C______ although we usually call her Gorda (which is like fatty) who just learned to walk I'll have to get you a video of her!

So we've gotten to know more of E____'s family which includes a mother who is JW, a brother who is Seventh Day adventist, a sister who is a Pentecostal pastor, and her sister who is halted between two opinions as Elijah puts it, that is to say a soon-to-be Mormon!

For pday we went grocery shopping and cleaned the apartment... 

Also I assume you saw Austin's email, I need either a tie or socks like that hahaha (Both are American flags!)

To his dad:
You can tell them I can't believe it either haha how is Abby in high school?

Even though I always stunk I really miss golf at the moment haha That sounds like a good time, I don't think I've met anyone here in Pativilca who has stepped foot on a golf course before so yeah sometimes they imagine that everyone in the US is a billionaire like, since a lot of people's first question is where the money comes from! I often have to explain that before the mission I worked at a factory packing dried food in packages and they're always like so you owned a factory? and I say what? No! I woke up at 3 in the morning to work at the lowest level why would you think an 18 year old could own a factory?

So our branch president is gone a lot of the time because he works in Lima and he has one councilor, his dad!

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

6/29/15 Cuy

I have eaten cuy 2 times. It is small and the skin is really tough, so you have to break the skin and scavenge a little for what meat you can get out haha It may sound cliche, but it doesn't taste much different from chicken. Cuy is also kind of expensive so you don't eat it often. I didn't eat that one in the picture no. It's the elders quorum president's. He has cuy and rabbits and ducks, he had gone with us to an appointment with our convert and afterward asked us if we wanted a lift to our next appointment (in his motocuy, a nicer version of a mototaxi) and he stopped by his house on the way to feed them so we took a couple pictures. haha

L-----'s daughter K---- liked the dedication but I found out afterward that L----- had been pulled out of the dedication because she wore pants.... I had helped her through getting an interview and knowing that she'd need someone to watch her baby. I had told her how to get to the meetinghouse and told her to be in Sunday dress but it never occurred to me to clarify the need for a dress or skirt instead of pants to attend that sort of a ceremony.... so yeah that was an unexpected problem. I felt bad but thankfully she's okay, I'm just glad it didn't affect her testimony in any way!

That's awesome that Devin and Diana got a house! There's a check off the list of what I'm praying for haha which means shifting it to things to thank for! haha

One thing I miss are the reunions.

That's so far outside of the supreme court's authority its ridiculous, I can imagine the uproar. My last companion found out that Chile had passed a similar law and now the US (not Peru yet haha)

te amo chao

In explanation, the picture where my t-shirt is tucked in was taken right after a game of soccer where our team had our shirts tucked to differentiate teams and I didn't notice it was still tucked until after the pictures.

To his dad:
It was pretty nice being able to serve in Huaraz, since the new mission will be getting that area.  And I got to meet a different people than here, where the elementary school teachers have to learn Quechua to teach the children.
There are houses around here without addresses too, it can be a little annoying getting a list of less actives "without number" as the house address haha
You guys cheated I wasn't born yet or I'd be tied too (with the number of years of attending the family reunion) haha I wonder how many miles away from Lima it is?? haha (Brad told him how far it was from HIS mission when he served in Austria)

Monday, June 22, 2015

6/22/15 The Dedication of the Trujillo Temple

Happy Father's Day everyone! 
Thinking of grandpa Measles... I always think of his response, every time you'd say, "what's up?" he'd say, "rent and taxes" haha He was a great example!

My new companion is Elder Riveros, he was born in Bolivia but his family moved when he was 7 years old to Sao Paulo Brasil. He's got 6 months in the mission and is a hard worker and knows how to work effectively and is also very confident. We get along well!  Half our district was transferred, including one area that was whitewashed (I think that's how they'd refer to it in English, it is when an area is left empty for 2 missionaries to come to, not knowing the area at all). 

The dedication of the Trujillo Temple was great!   When they were sealing in the corner stone Pres. Uchtdorf invited up a few children to do it too!  First he had a boy come help seal in the corner stone and Pres. Uchtdorf was telling him to "look over there to the camera" but the translator was like 10 feet away, at a standing microphone, so when he was translating what Pres. Uchtdorf said the little boy was a little confused about who he was talking to and what was going on and it took him a minute to figure out what he was telling him to do...  but you could tell that the little girl in that picture was ready and turned as soon as Pres. Uchtdorf started to gesture and it made me chuckle. 

Later during the dedicatory ceremony, the Temple President and Matron spoke, the Area President, Elder Uceda (from Lima) spoke, and President Uchtdorf spoke and said the dedicatory prayer. When President Uchtdorf started his talk he began in Spanish and I was surprised thinking is he going to do the whole talk in Spanish but he just said a couple of sentences and then started in English with the interpreter there, but it was pretty cool.  A lady sitting next to me was whispering aloud in Spanish every word that she recognized in English, which was pretty funny. Anyway, I was mainly happy because shortly after we got there my converts L----- and her daughter K---- showed up but I didn't get to speak with them afterwards. We will have to go visit them and see how they enjoyed it!

Manjar is good stuff but sometime they make the alfajores with too much and it's too sweet is all. 

We make our own breakfast and dinner I usually eat cereal in the morning and at night either spaghetti or sandwiches.  I recently found "jamon americano" (American ham - I am assuming a deli ham) and was pretty happy so that's one thing. We usually have rice and chicken everyday at lunch around here, sometimes they have beans but that's rare more often potatoes. 

We went to visit a family yesterday and the mom said her husband was out celebrating father's day with his beer and I kind of stared at her for a second like ¿en serio? and said he should be celebrating FATHER's day with his children so we'll see how that goes. 

I'm very thankful for the commandments of God and the restored gospel in my family.
Holland started walking? Awesome
It sounds like Sam had a good mission!

The church is true.  
Thank you, te amo. chao 

Me and my companion at the house of our elders quorum president I'm getting ready to eat a cuy (guinea pig)

To his dad: (Brad was telling him about his friend, who got home, mission and his experiences.  Sam went to the Marshall Islands... one of the islands he served on was on the equator and the sun came up at 6:30 am, and went down at 6:30 pm every day of the year.  They have to be in at dark... plus the electricity was hit and miss depending on which island he was on)

What did they do at night after 6:30?  No work could get done and there wasn't even light for studying or anything... that sounds like it could have been pretty frustrating. 

My companion came from Lima and was like, woah this is such a small town with a tiny branch and few leadership so I just related what you were saying right there to him and he was like woah en serio? haha that is a very different mission than here! wow!

6/15/15 Calling a New Apostle

Yes, It's transfers and I'm staying here! My companion is being transferred. We never know about transfers until the day of (unless you're staying in your area). You meet your new companion when he shows up to the zone meeting with the zone leaders so I don't know who my companion will be or anything.

There were some problems in the interviews so they were not baptized yet. 

I---'s dad can only be home on the weekends so we didn't make any attempt to teach them during the week but we went there on Saturday as we had scheduled with them at the last lesson but I--- and his dad were not there so we invited the mom to church and asked her to let them know. But in spite of our calling them Sunday morning they didn't attend church so we'll be sure to visit them soon. 

I'm not sure what dulce de leche is... does Devin know if it's the same thing as manjar? I think it might be a different name for the same thing.

Apparently Peru played against Brazil in a game in the "copa America" yesterday and everyone was really happy that they scored one goal against Brazil even though they still lost haha I guess that's how the team is here!

What dinosaur movie?

It was pretty weird (and sad) doing weekly planning this week and putting zero as the goal for baptisms and for investigators in sacrament meeting.  We won't be able to baptize this week since we will be having the temple dedication (there will not be a reg. Sacrament meeting on Sunday).  Preach My Gospel says that convert baptisms have to be confirmed in sacrament meeting and we don't want to leave a week in between baptism and confirmation.

A house nearby has a large Barney doll for some reason and it's kind of creepy

The zone of Huaraz is going to be part of the new Trujillo South mission and all of the missionaries there will be part of that mission in this transfer. I don't know whether my companion is going to the new mission or not, he won't know until tomorrow. He's hoping he won't change missions because this is the best mission in the world!  In the weekly letter from President Archibald today he was saying that he has felt some pressure with this transfers after finding out that the transfers had to be approved by the quorum of the 12! 

I am sorry, I will take more pictures of myself even though that's completely out of my nature.

To his dad:
I wonder who conducted Elder Perry's funeral and how that felt. That reminds me, in a recent training with the president he was talking about some meeting he had gone to and someone had prayed for the family of Elder Perry, that they could feel comforted and he commented that that's an honorable thing to ask for but there's another family that's going to need your prayers even more (in reference to the family of his replacement in the quorum of the 12) haha He then proceeded to give some detailed explanation of how an apostle is chosen and some examples of how some apostles have described what it was like being called into a meeting with the quorum of the 12 (or the 11) and the First Presidency and being told that he has been called by the Lord to be an apostle!  He told a story where just after one apostle (I don't recall who) was called he was shown to a phone and told to call his wife where he paused and stared at the phone for a couple of seconds when the prophet said to him, "Did you forget the number?" and he said, "Umm, yes I did" haha

6/8/15 It Expounded the Word of God!

It was a good week! We're trying to get in a couple baptisms this week so they can see the extension of the temple dedication on the 21st.

This last week we had a training with president and he brought up some interesting points on the temple sealing which can be found in a talk given by Boyd K Packer called "Our Moral Environment" given in April 1992 that I know will interest you. Take special care to notice the use of the word 'will' without any 'if' in the quote by Joseph Smith the prophet.
President Archibald said that some time ago he came across that quote by Joseph Smith but noticed that the Brethren had not mentioned it, therefore he kept in reserve not teaching based on that (he was an Institute teacher in Alabama for quite some time). Then Pres. Packer mentioned it in this talk and ever since, Pres. Archibald started putting it into his lesson plans.

So the other day we went to visit the guy with the injured leg, and this time his parents were there so we taught lesson 1 and when we explained The Book of Mormon he said, "I have one of those books but it looks a little different" and he went and got it and it was a triple combination! My companion and I kind of looked at each other like, where did he get that? We can't even get the branch to get one for our converts haha and his dad said that he had read in it for an hour once and explained to his wife how clearly it expounded the word of God!  That was an awesome experience!  

Here are some pictures from a little museum, which was the house of Simon Bolivar known as the Liberator, who was the general responsible for getting the Spanish crown out of Peru and as I understand some other south American countries. the museum also included a printing press used to print the first post-Spanish rule newspaper in Peru (near the same time The Book of Mormon was first printed)

Anyway, chao les amo 

Also my investigator's daughter stole my camera in church the other day and took a couple selfies haha

To his dad:
That kind of detail is how my mission president teaches, like when he was describing the martyrdom of Joseph Smith and stands and puts his hand a certain distance above his own head and says Joseph was this tall and moves his hand to a different level and says Hyrum was this tall and continues to describe the events of the martyrdom and all. He is a big fan of the idea of having your own movie in your head of what you study in the scriptures. I'm working on that and I am starting to understand the scriptures differently.  Yesterday I was reading The Book of Mormon where Aaron was teaching King Lamoni's father and I realized that 2 or 3 of Aaron's brothers were there during the lesson but he didn't let them talk once during the lesson haha

The KFC closed? That's actually one of the more common American restaurants here (though I've still not had one in any of my zones) They have lots of chicken and potatoes around here, although from what I hear they serve a little more rice around here than in the KFC's in the US haha 
My companion received nutella in a package and the jar is written in German so maybe you can tell me what it says if it's not too blurry haha (a little practice with your mission language)
chao. que te vaya bien.

Thursday, June 18, 2015

6/1/15 Truly Love the People

On Saturday night we were looking at the general authorities in the general conference edition of the Liahonah we had just
gotten and talking about how some of them were getting pretty old when and our zone leader called and said, "Who is the second most senior apostle?" or something like that and we all said, "Elder Perry" and he said, "He passed away".  We were pretty startled and sad about that but of course has been talking about how he's been sick for a while.

I'd really like to see that scripture chase haha 
Were they all doing lesson 1 or different lessons or what? Does that mean they were studying preach my gospel too?

I'm glad Brady is going back out to the field. Our recent convert E---- decided to go to Chile because there is a lot of work there.  The good thing is, her stake president is my companion's uncle! (So that should help her stay active) Her sister is going to be living in her house while she's gone so we helped her move some of her stuff in and had a short lesson with her. She is a pastor so she did a lot of the talking haha Apparently in her church they have "prophets and apostles" and the laying on of hands for the Holy Ghost. We'll see what she has to say when we teach The Book of Mormon and prophets chosen by God.

We had a multizone conference and president talked about his mission.  He was explaining that we need to have real love for the people we teach if we want to make any real difference in their lives.  He talked about when he was a missionary he gave a talk on the atonement, with real love for the Savior and had success in that but afterward an excommunicated member who was there told him he was a hypocrite and could talk of the love of Christ but did not love the people there.  He then quoted his own journal which said that he was right, he had written, "I hate these ignorant Argentines" and later after putting in a real effort to learn to love them, including reading a famous book of proverbs from Argentina (and regardless of the difficulty) learned it and quoted it in another talk later in his mission and some old ladies came up to him and hugged him saying "eres Argentino"!  He told us that we have to be Peruvian and truly love the people here!
love you nos vemos

To his dad:
My current companion is pretty cool. Viña del mar Chile sounds like the South America version of Southern California with nice beaches and good weather and all. If that companion was from Peru I bet he was from Iquitos haha they always make fun of the people from the jungle around here haha

Ask Alex why he hasn't written me

Around here they put some kind of white make up on, they say it's sunscreen but it looks the same as what my first companion put on which was like a powder that supposedly is for pimples but I can't figure out how clogging your face with powder could help get rid of pimples. It leaves a white powdery film on their face that looks super weird haha