Monday, May 14, 2012

I'm here in CHICLAYO May 8th, 2012

Like always it was nice to read how everyone is doing and to see some pictures of you guys, sounds like you guys are doing good!! It´s so weird to see pictures of Ava she´s grown so much...Cool that you were able to go to a Peruvian Restaurant you guys for sure need to eat Ceviche, it´s super good. Luckily in the pension in Cajamarca Paola knew how to make Ceviche with cooked fish so that we could eat it. We can´t eat uncooked fish or ceviche. But I like it a lot, I don´t like Sushi but Ceviche was super good. Dan came back from Canada? That´s sweet that he was able to go on that trip he has a sweet job. You´ll have to tell Evan HAPPY BIRTHDAY! It feels lame to not be able to do anything more than write happy birthday but i´ll wish him a happybirthday on mothers day! Well I made it to Chiclayo all in one piece, haha funny story about my traveling experience from Cajamarca to here. But i´m here with Elder Cabrera he´s from Chile, Santiago he´s 19 and he´s been in the mission a little under 2 months. I´m here in a ward called La Únion in the Stake La Victoria, it´s super awesome here I like it a lot the weather is pretty moderate and a lot like California. Everyone told me how it was going to be burning hott but it´s nice weather with a ocean breaze were about 15 minutes from the ocean, there´s a lot of dirt roads but in our area theres more streets. Were about 5 minutes from downtown Chiclayo, from the mission office. The room where we live is a lot smaller than where I used to live in Cajamarca but it´s nice and cozy, the pension is sweet the Hermana cooks what we want to eat I feel pretty blessed to be where I´m at. I´ve felt that way up until now in the mission. Funny story so I traveled alone from Cajamarca to Chiclayo, I was supposed to travel at 9:30pm and the zone leaders told us that we were supposed to be there right at 9:30pm and I was trying to hurry because Hermana Paola made me pizza on Monday right before I left. I was trying to make it to the bus station right at 9:30 and we got there at 9:45 and all the elders and members were freakin out when I got to the bus station, because we showed up in the taxi with all my luggage and the bus was driving off haha. They stopped the bus and everyone grabbed my luggage and we ran inside to get my ticket but they told me it was too late, and the bus drove off ha. I thought I was going to be in Cajamarca one more night but I ended up buying my own ticket and they sent me alone from Cajamarca to Chiclayo, I sat with a family on the bus and just slept for the 6 hour ride. I got to chiclayo and found all the elders from my zone in Chiclayo and it was all alright haha. In the change meeting I found all the elders from my group that I came to the mission with and Elder Sampson it was sweet. I was super nervous in the change meeting, I wasn´t sure who I´d be with and they told me I was going to be with a new missionary but I didn´t know if they were lying or not but sure enough they put me with Elder Cabrera he´s a super cool guy, a little serious but I think it´s cause we don´t know each other super well yet. I really like the ward and everything about the area here, the members and all. It´s a pretty small area from where I used to be at, but I like it a lot. Its been a little different being the companion that´s been in the mission longer I kind of have to step it up a bit and be an example but it´s going to be a good learning experience. This week we were knocking doors when one of our appointments fell through and we found this lady in her wheel chair on her porch we presented ourselves and she let us in her house. We talked for a little bit and while we were talking I realized she didn´t have her left leg, she explained to us what happened. She feels that it wasn´t a coincedence that we showed up at her house, we´ve talked with her two different times and she´s super receptive and learns fast. My companion and I are working on teaching a little bit more smoothly and more as a team, a little bit of ping pong. I think were going to do really good this change he likes to work so were going to put forth our best effort. So my pacakages came, I tried to go pick them up today in the plaza of Chiclayo but Serpost was closed. I might swing by there tomorrow but there´s not a ton of time probably next week. So I think i´m going to call on Saturday night to let you guys know at what time i´m going to call and all of that and so we can figure out if were going to skype or just talk on the phone normally. Probably at 9ish on saturday night i´m going to call for like 5 minutes just to figure that out. Thanks a bunch for everything that you guys do for me! HAPPY BIRTHDAY MOM!! :D Talk to you guys on SUNDAY!! :D -Christopher

Bueno April 16th, 2012

It`s so funny to read the stories of the little kids and all that is going on at home. It`s so weird to think how much Ava has grown up and that she`s walking. Does Dad know that your jumping the Van? Hahaha. That`s super funny I was laughing when I read it. I`m glad that Eli was able to get his Hulk Fists, that super sweet hah. Too bad that the Track Meet got rained out, I remember when they had High Jump one time in the rain. It is funny to think that i`m living in another Country where the people don`t speak English and live a lot differently than we do. But so far it`s been such an awesome experience, i`m learning so much. I wouldn`t want to be anywhere else than in the mission, bueno I`d be sweet to be home but not for another 17 months haha. It`s been sweet lately my comp and I have been doing good work and i`ve gotten to know him better he`s a stud. I`m bummed out that we only have another two weeks together, it`s crazy how fast 6 weeks or a change goes by it`s weird. He`s been teaching me a lot of doctrine that`s going to help me out a ton with my teaching, he know`s quite a bit. It was sweet we were able to put a baptismal date for Yuri he should be baptized this Saturday, if everything goes as planned. The good thing is that he is putting forth his part and trying to prepare himself. He`s been to General Conference, the church twice and a baptismal service. He`s prepared for his baptismal date this saturday, the only thing is that he needs a friend in the ward I think i`ve already told you guys about this but were trying to help him out with that. We`re still working with the family, they`re slowing progressing and all of them have been to church more than one time other than Wilson (The Dad) because he works on Sundays. But were going to teach them about the Sabbath Day, and try and see what Wilson can do to change his work. He works driving vans from Cajamarca to San Marcos (a small provincia), it`s his own work so he should be able to work something out. Other than those who are progressing we`ve been working on finding new people to teach, we have a couple people that we think can progress. It was pretty interesting we found this guy named Jose that used to be a terrorist he told us all these stories about what he used to do , he`s super cool other than that he used to be a terrorist haha. He wants to change and so were going to see how that goes. Also on Tuesday I was buying a soda outside of our house in a small store and this lady asked us who we were and was trying to talk to me in english hah we wrote down her address and on Friday we went to her house and she`s super receptive her names Laurez, she lives with her family. On Sunday we had Stake Conference and the Stake Presidency changed a little only the counselors, but the Conference was sweet I was able to learn a lot. The Stake President is awesome he`s super helpful with the missionary work and all of that, I think they`re hoping to divide all the wards and make another Stake but that won`t be for a while. Today was fun we went to the hill Santo Palonia with the Zone and to the Soccer field in front of our pension and all the zone played soccer and we ate pizza after in our pension. Hermana Paula cooks super good and made about 10 pizzas for all 22 of us in the zone haha. It was pretty sweet. I`m hopìng that this week we can really work hard and improve our numbers more with our lessons that we have everyweek and everything. Like on Sunday we had divisions so we could find more new investigadores, with some of the youth in our ward that our preparing for the mission, I was with Marvin in our ward he has his call to Bolivia. It was interesting being with someone that doesn`t really know the lessons very well, I don`t think I ever want to train a new missionary haha. Thanks for sending my pants! It`s a bummer I don`t fit in any of my pants anymore, I had one of the members in our ward let out the pant a little bit. I think i`ve gotten super fat or all this hill climbing has made my legs bigger but I think i`ve gotten fat haha. The Zone Leaders told me that I have a package so I think what you guys sent me just got to the Mission office. Love you guys, I`m gonna try and write out some letters today. I should have some time to do that :D Talk to you next week! P.S. Sorry there aren`t any photos this next week i`ll send some!

Easter April 9th, 2012

How´s it going? Good to hear you guys were able to enjoy Easter! They don´t really do much here but celebrate La Semana Santa and on TV theres a ton of Bible movies haha. It was crazy we were in the street and there was a bunch of Catholics about 100 walking through the street. About four of them were dressed up one as jesus carrying a cross and the others as roman soldiers. Every block theyd stop and whip Jesus and he´d fall to the ground and they´d chant. While I was watching it´d made me think a lot about how in our church we don´t focus a lot on the death of jesus more on the fact that he lives that he was ressurected on Sunday. It´s crazy to think about all Christ has done for us, it´s difficult to comprehend what he went through but the least we can do is be grateful and obey the commandments ie the simple things. This week went really good, I feel a lot better with the work we were able to do this week. I felt bad last week because I don´t think we put forth are full effort to work really hard and we didn´t have super awesome numbers. I´m learning to work really hard in the mission but also to have fun, or just joke around in the street. If you can imagine walking everyday in the street for 7 hours it helps a lot to joke around with your comp or do whatever to enjoy yourself ha. But I feel really good with the work that were doing and im learning a ton from my companion. Yesterday we were knocking doors and we knocked the door of this house and a lady came to the door and was super welcoming and super nice it seemed to be a little to good to be true until she said she was a Jehovas Witness haha. She let us in and we started to talk with her a little and there was what seemed like a million pamphlets from the Jehovas Witnesses, she was super energetic and acted almost like a robot it was super weird. We invited her son to join us in the lesson and we were going to start with a prayer but her son said that he would feel uncomfortable if we prayed which was weird. But we started talking and about 2 minutes into the lesson the lady stopped us and started to share a ton of different scriptures in the bible about how Jehova is God and how Jesus Christ is his son. It felt like she only wanted to tear us down, I had a super weird feeling. She would ask us questions and we would just answer with yeah and for sure haha, we didn´t want to cause problems but it just made me think about how great the Gospel is and the blessings that the gospel brings to our lives. She just wanted to tear down our beliefs and was super robotic it was weird I don´t really know how to explain it. I was able to study a little in the old and new testament about scriptures that explain how Jehova is Jesus Christ, I have a hard time understanding how people get so confused with the doctrine it´s right there in the scriptures for example how we should be baptized or recieving the holy ghost. But it was a really good experience for me. I have been learning a lot from my companion lately he´s super cool and knows the doctrine really well. I´ve been able to learn so much from the three companions that i have had so far in the mission. It´s been cool because there´s something to be learned from everyone of your companions. I´ve also been trying to be more humble and recieving of suggestions, I think sometimes that I was super prideful and not very recieving of advice. But I know that I have a lot to learn sometimes I have a hard time with that I think haha. The family that we are teaching seem to be progressing pretty well and we had a family home evening with them and the bishop. I don´t think they´ll get baptized in this change probably after I leave. But all I want is that they get baptized and dont reactivate. That is something so important that we dont baptize anyone without a firm testimony of this gospel, I think I´ve already said it but it´s the worst feeling seeing one of your converts inactive. Were also teaching Claudia she seems to be doing really well too, she is a little confused because she´s going through some problems right now and doesn´t think that God should let all this happen at once to her. We also taught her the Word of Wisdom on Tuesday but we had a lesson with her on Thursday and she freaking drank Coffee it was a bummer were gonna keep working with her. We just recentely had a lesson with Yuri and we shared a little bit about 3 Nefi 11 and how Christ appeared to the Nephites and how he talked about how we should be baptized by immersion and all of that and put a baptismal date for the 21st of this month. Were pretty stoked about the progress he´s making and i´m happy because he´s putting forth his part. And I think the goal we put for the 21st is reachable. He already has a testimony and always keeps our commitments so there shouldn´t be a problem other than that he needs a friend in the ward, so that he can stay active. Well that´s about all but I´m glad you guys are doing really good! Thanks for all the support and all that you do, I was gonna ask if you guys send me a package that you could send my brown slacks! When you have time to do that :D Love you guys!! Talk to you next week :D -Christopher

Conferencia Genral April 2nd, 2012

was sweet to get the pictures and the email from you guys. Sounds like Dad and Bryce are enjoying themselves down in Arizona with Corey, I wish I was down there so I could show them how to ride a fourwheeler haha. That´s a bummer that the kids and Mom are sick, i´ve been lucky so far in the mission and haven´t got too sick yet. I´m sure you´ll get feeling better soon. Linda and Conner came up? You´ll have to tell them that I say hi, and tell Conner i´m sorry I haven´t been able to shoot him a letter yet haha. I´m glad he´s feeling better and on his meds. There´s not any snow? Wow freaking that´s pretty crazy I didn´t think that spring would be hitting Utah so soon, it snowed the beginning of May last year if I remember right that was so awesome haha. So this week was really good we had Conference, my companion is a cool dude, and the family that we are teaching has a baptism date for the 14th of this month. I was so stoked about the family that we´re teaching we had the coolest and most spiritual lesson with them on Wednesday the 28th. The mom wanted us to visit them on my birthday cause she said she was going to give me a cake, I didn´t think she was going to but we went to their house and she had cake soda and Wilson the dad came home early from work for it haha. I felt special haha they sang happy birthday to me with candles and everything, it was soo cool I am so excited about the progress the family is making. But after we taught the family about the gospel of jesus christ and baptism, and explained to them are function as missionaries and what are purpose is. The spirit was sooo strong and we taught by the spirit one of the best lessons i´ve had in the mission so far. We put a baptismal date for the 14th of this month and they told us is something that they really want to do but they told us that they want to be ready to be baptized and not just get baptized to get baptized. They´re supposed to pray as a family to recieve and answer, they have good intenciones and want to become closer as a family. At the end of the lesson we kneeled down with the family Noriega to pray to close the lesson and it reminded me of when we had family prayer and how insignificant I used to think prayer was as a family. But when we were kneeled down with them it was so spiritual and I have a testimony that I know that it helps families to become closer together! Make sure and always pray as a family!! The mom Ava and the dad Wilson came to general conference on saturday also so that was super sweet and I was happy that Wilson was able to come on saturday because it´s tough for him to come to church on Sunday because of work. We´re also teaching Yuri (16) and Claudia (14) they´re awesome and progressing, Yuri came to the afternoon session of conference on Sunday and was able to hear the prophet! So freakin cool, I´m convinced and have a strong testimony of the importance of prophets. It meant a lot more to me to listen to the prophet this conference then it ever has, to listen to the apostles. Knowing that we have a same organized church that Jesus Christ organized made it a lot more special for me. You can feel the love that the prophet has for all the members of the church as well as those who aren´t members. it´s also cool to see the human side of the prophet and how he has a sense of humor haha. But Yuri and Claudia have been progressing and are super interested in the church, the two should be baptized this month we just have to put a baptism date for them, and they need friends in the ward so that they don´t inactivate. Luckily the ward is super awesome and help us out so it shouldn´t be a problem. Speaking of the ward and being awesome we had a sweet activity on Friday with the ward and did a talent show and all the ward came as well as investigadores it turned out awesome. I have a video of the sketch the missionaries did in our ward but it´s 13 minutes long i´d send it if it wasn´t so long haha. But the activity turned out awesome and we were super stoked about it. I was a little bit bummed out this week because we didn´t have super awesome numbers and we didn´t have very many lessons like we normally do, so I´m hoping we can get working a lot harder this week. It was funny this week we were knocking doors on santa palonia and we knocked the door of this house and this guy came to the door and was from this radio station in cajamarca he told us we could talk on the radio one of these days for all of cajamarca so were going to give him a call, we were going to try and talk on the radio before conference and invite all of Cajamarca to come ahaha but we didn´t end up doing it. I had a moment of pride this week with my spanish, we were walking down the road to an appointment and we saw a bunch of ladies shoveling and moving dirt from the road. We offered to help them out and while I was shoveling dirt for them, I was talking to the ladies about the church and they asked me where I was from I told them I was from Celedin a small town pretty close to Cajamarca, and the people that live there have white skin and look like gringos. They all believed me hahahahaha, it made me laugh. I still have a lot to learn with the language but I think it´s coming. That´s pretty much my week, also a member from the ward lent us his guitar for a couple days so that was cool. I think it might be against the rules i´m not sure haha. I also got the package that you sent me with the tie and the yo yo hahah, the tie is crazy I don´t know if I can ever use it when I go out tracting but it´s cool to have anyways! Haha. I love you guys and I´m super thankful for everything that you do for me :) talk to you next week!!! -Christopher P.S. Don´t forget to pray as a family! P.S.S. There´s pictures with my comp and the kids from the family were teaching as well as me wearing the tie you guys sent me! haha.

Mi nuevo companero March 26th, 2012

Hey how´s it going!? Sounds like you guys are staying pretty busy lately with the kids and everything. The pinewood derby the trackmeets and everything. I can´t believe it´s my birthday already haha, I´m going to be 20 ahh man that´s so old I feel like. This week has gone super good my compy Elder Velarde left on Tuesday night with some other elders for Chiclayo, I was with Elder Fandino from Columbia on Wednesday waiting for our new companions to get here from Chiclayo. My new comp Elder Sandoval came on Wednesday night, along with 5 other elders from Chiclayo. So this week we´ve been getting to know the area better and the investigadores and members and all that. I´m pretty stoked about my new companion he´s from Lima, and he likes to work hard so I´m hoping that we can get a lot of work done in the next 6 weeks we´ll be together. Sadly I think i´ll be heading out of Cajamarca this change and going to Chiclayo so I´m going to try and work hard and enjoy myself this change. That´s sweet to hear that Bryce is doing track and took 10th place in his first meet, I liked doing High Jump that was always fun and long jump too. I wasn´t ever very good at hurtles but I didn´t want to die either it´s so sketchy with Hurtles, I remember one meet where I ate crap on the hurtles haha so embarassing. And Ava walking? Freaking since when? That´s sweet, she´s about a year and 3 months old now so she should be walking. Sounds like you guys had a good time at the pinewood derby, tell the little kids Joel evan and eli I say hi and thanks for the birthday card with the farting monkey that made me laugh hahah. To give you guys a quick update this week has been good I get along super good with my companion and he´s super helpful. We´ve been checking out all the progressing investigadores we have and getting to know the members of our ward. We have a lot of investigadores that I think can progress and become members I hope! I´ve put a lot of thought into how converts can be inactivated after their baptism so easily, and the importance of that in the work. It´s probably the worst feeling in the world to see one of your converts be baptized and then not come to church. I feel like it´s my fault that they don´t come to church like they should haha, I hope the members can help us out with that. This week I was able to study a little a bit about Humility and how important it is to be someone that has humility, I definitely have a problem with it. But I´m trying to realize that I need the help of Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ so that I can progress as a person. That was what I was able to study this week that really hit me and how important it is. We can´t do anything without the help of Jesus Christ or Heavenly Father and sometimes it´s difficult to understand that or it has been for me. It was sweet on Sunday we went to the house of a member in our ward to eat lunch and they made me a cake and celebrated my birthday, it was super nice of them. Also my pensionista told me that she´s going to make a cake for me on wednesday so i´m pretty stoked about that she´s such a good cook. All the members are soo nice it´s been the best to be in this ward, it feels like home here haha. I think the ward makes a huge difference with where your at and the work. I feel blessed to be where I´m at. I was thinking how sweet it´d be to come back here to visit, I think you guys would love it here. You´ll have to take some pictures and such to let me know what you guys did for my birthday! I´m glad you guys have been able to fun stuff lately, and I love you guys soo much thanks for all that you do and the support that I have from you guys. Thanks for the package you guys are sending me! I attached some pictures in another email and sent a letter to mom and dad I still need to write you Bryce sorry! LOVE YOU GUYS! -Christopher

Yo me quedo! March 19th 2012

Family How`s it going?! Sounds like a lot is going on in the family these days. Pinewood Derbys, home schooling, trips to moab, selling the Jeep, and Ava folding her arms to pray haha. So how`s the pinewood derby car coming along, I`m expecting to hear next week that you guys won 1st! I remember like it was yesterday when we won 1st with that yellow pinewood derby car that was so cool. I`m sure you guys have built a racing machine. The story with Joel and the younger kids, made me chuckle sounds just like something Joel would do especially the fire drill hahaha. Send me some pictures of the trip to Moab I want to see where Dan and Bryce were maybe you didn`t take pictures but if you did send some! It`s a bummer to hear your going to sell the Jeep but it wasn`t used to much so it makes more sense to sell it. Also sounds like Ava is learning to do a lot of things, is she close to taking some steps yet? The picture of Eli giving his bike to Ava was cute ha. So good news! ¡Yo me quedo acà en Cajamarca! I was so happy to hear on Sunday night that I get to stay one more change here, I love it here so much I feel at home with the mountains and everything. It was nerve racking on Sunday night, we got together with the four of us Elders in the ward and brought our telephones and ate Hamburgers and waited for the Zone Leaders to call us. I prayed this week that I would be able to stay one more change, because I am super familiar with the area and know that there is still a lot of work to be done. Especially with recent converts that need a lot of help. My companion seemed to be super bummed out that he`s leaving and i`m staying, my new companion should be getting here on Wedenesday night from Chiclayo. I hope he`s a cool guy haha, but I usually get along with everyone. My companion will be heading out tomorrow night and i`ll be with another Elder on Wednesday during the day proselyting until my companion comes. I`m just really happy to be where I`m at with the work and the ward haha. In other news I`ve had a good week, come to think about it i`m yet to have a really crummy week which has been awesome. I`ve been told the first 6 months of the mission are the most dificult but it hasn`t been that way for me. We`ve been working with a couple of different investigadores and the family that we found about a month ago. Yuri (16 years old) has been studying and has had his examines this past week so he hasn`t been able to come to church and we haven`t been able to meet with him. I see him as someone that can really progress and be a faithful church goer I think. Tatiana (17 years old), she`s the girl that we found when I had this random feeling to knock this door high up on the hill. She had a baptism date for the 24th of this month, but she didn`t come to church on Sunday so maybe for this next week. Claudia (15 years old) she`s super awesome, but has about a million questions when we teach her. She`s an investigador from the other ward but wants to go to church in our ward she`s a reference of one of the members from Pueblo Libre. She should be baptized this month as well I hope, she`s so awesome and has desire to know more about the church. And the family that we are teaching it was kind of a bummer, on Sunday night last week we went to their house with Moroni (member from our ward) they fed us and right after we ate dinner with them we had to leave. So I felt like we showed up ate and then left...oh well they`re super nice and also should make good progress. *We had a baptism this week which was really cool, Heni (14 years old) another reference in the ward. She`s super awesome, and also has desires to follow Jesus Christ and become closer to him in her life. She`s got her cousin to go to church with everyweek, and her cousin has told us that every week she`ll be helping so that Heni comes. Speaking of keeping recent converts active after their baptism, that has been something huge for me this week. I was thinking a lot about the people that have been baptized since I`ve been in the ward and how some of them aren`t super faithful church goers and having really intergrated into the ward like they should have. This change has been good because the people that have been baptized have friends in the ward and callings as well a responsiblity so that they don`t inactivate. I`ve felt super bad for what happened with Juan Carlos on Sunday last week we had an activity with the ward and did exchanges with members and went out to get references. And while we were walking in the street we found Juan Carlos drunk, it was super sad to see. It`s horrible to find someone that you baptized and see that they are having problems. Gordon B. Hinckley said that there`s three things that every new convert needs; 1. A friend that can help them out 2. A calling or responsibility. 3. Every member needs to be nurished by the good word of God (Moroni 6:4). I`m hoping to be able to apply this in the mission, because the last thing you want is someone that is baptized and then immediately after inactivates...that`s what I learned this week ha. Also something that has been really cool for me was when Elder Ucede came to visit our zone, he talked a little a bit about how he always trys to improve his English skills and how it`s a blessing for him to be able to listen to Thomas S. Monson and understand what he says. It made me think a lot about how far i`ve come with the language I feel a ton more comfortable with my ability to speak, and communicate sometimes I don`t even notice that now I haven`t had problems communicating. Because the first couple of weeks or the first two months, nobody understood me I felt like haha. But now I feel a ton more comfortable. I was getting down on myself a lot the first couple of months, I find that when I feel confident and act or pretend like I can speak good I tend to speak better. I just need to zone in on my Latino accent haha, I read The Book of Mormon everyday out loud in Spanish and I notice that it`s helping me out. But I feel super blessed for what I can do with the language right now. Love you guys! Thanks for the update on what`s going on, it`s been different being completely shut out from the outside world hahah. I`ll talk to you guys next week :D -Christopher P.S. The first two pictures our from about 2 months ago when we went to La Granja Porcon and when we had the baptizms as a zone. The other pictures are from when it rained a ton two days ago and from the baptizm of Heni.

Elder Uzeda March 5th, 2012

Yeah sometimes I do forget i´m in Perú haha, yeah it´s been pretty sweet to be where i´m at like you guys already know ha. I count my blessings everyday, we have a lot to be thankful for. Bryce had a birthday party huh? With chicks? Hahah. Awesome, that´s sweet! Wow that´s so weird that he´s 16, like i´ve told you Bryce be careful with the CR-V and the sound system haha. The CR-V and me have been through some good times and I don´t want to come home and see it destroyed :( haha. Sledding huh? Sweet! It´s good to hear that Utah is finally getting the snow it deserves! That hill behind K-Mart is always fun to go sledding at. Ava is being a daredevil already? Haha. Snowbird had an avalanche inbounds? That´s pretty nuts and scary to think about ha. So to give you guys an update on this week. Elder Uzeda came to our zone on Tuesday to talk to us, it was super cool. He is super knowledgable and I learned a lot from what he had to say. All the general authorities are awesome, I´m excited for General Conference. Maybe all see Jessie´s dad! haha. Elder Uzeda talked a lot about following the rules, which was really good. He gave us a lot of guidance and specific things that we needed to hear. We were supposed to have a baptism this week, Elizabeth (14 years old) was going to be baptized. She´s a reference of a member in our ward, we went with our ward mission leader to have a lesson with her and talk to her Mom about permission so that she could be baptized. She lives super high up on the mountain side of our area, and we didn´t tell our ward mission leader where she lived. So when we started climbing the hills he kept asking us when we were going to get there it was funny. We finally got to her house and talked a lot about baptism and the third lesson. Her mom came and talked to us for a little while, she was feeling sick so we gave her a blessing. I was able to give my third blessing pretty cool I thought haha. We thought that maybe if we gave her a blessing to feel better she might be more likely to give permission to her daughter Elizabeth. Nonetheless she told us she has to learn more and be more familiar with the church. She´s catholic by tradition and has her beliefs and isn´t very open to new ideas or other religions. Apart from Elizabeth we have Yuri who´s 16 and is a pretty cool kid. He´s also a reference of the ward and already has an answer about Joseph Smith and know´s it´s true. His parents support his decision to be baptized at the end of this week. He came to church yesterday and played soccer with all the members and missionaries of our zone this morning. He needs some friends in our ward and a little bit more preparation but he´ll be ready for the end of this week. Also we have been teaching this family who are also another reference of the ward. There´s 5 in their family and I really think that they have a lot of potential to progress. They learn and understand all the doctrine perfect and it´s super nice teaching them. They also came to church yesterday. The mom and dad are cool and really want the best for their family, and they´ll be blessed by living the Gospel. Were gonna work with them. I feel super blessed and lucky to have all the support we have and that we have people to teach. Also another thing that was cool and made me realize better the important role of the Spirit was on Wednesday we were coming back from a lesson with a investigador and I felt a strong impression to visit this house that was up high on the hill. We walked up to this house and I knocked on the door and a 17 year old girl answered the door. We introduced ourselves and she immediately said "come in" haha we dídn´t even get the chance to explain our function or what we are doing as missionaries. We taught the second lesson and she had a ton of questions, and we´ve also taught her mom. This little experience made me realize the important role of the spirit in the missionary work. Sometimes you just have to act on the the promptings that you recieve and they´re usually small and insiginifcant so you really have to be listening. Today for P-Day we visited Los Baños del Inca, pretty cool I thought. It was a lot like Yellowstone well the pools anyways. It´s been sweet being able to visit all the cool tourist sights here. We also played soccer this morning like we always do in the mornings. Something funny on a side note was yesterday we ran into the missionaries in our ward and one of the two was playing with his Yo-Yo. I borrowed his Yo-Yo for a second and was playing with it in the street. This guy drove up and gave me some money about 2 dollars when you translate the money, I´m thinking about maybe after the mission I can just do yo yo tricks in the street and live in Cajamarca what do you guys think? hahah. Funny stuff. I´m gonna try and figure out how to get more music for my iPod I´m not sure how but I think theres a member that has some music I could get I´ll figure it out. Thanks for the packages that you´ve sent me! Oh yeah I wrote letters for the family so tomorrow or today i´m going to send them out! Love you guys talk to you next week :D -Christopher

Feb, 27th Una otra semana

-Family Another good week here in the field! I`m doing good and enjoying every second that I have here. How are you guys doing? That boat race sounds really cool haha, I hope you guys have video of it so I can see! Haha. Was it super cold up at Provo lake haha. It`s been pretty nice weather here it continues to rain almost everyday hah. I can`t believe Bryce is driving around on the freeway so weird, and that he`s 16! Freaking crazy. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BRYCE!!! Sorry I can`t really wish you a happy birthday other than through an email...enjoy High School and watch out for those chicks they`re nothing but trouble! Hahah. And also take care of the CRV I don`t want to come home and find out that the CRV has been destroyed haha! But serious enjoy the times you`ll have in High School. Tell Eli that the Yeti lives in the mountains by our house, I see him everyday when were tracting and he`s interested in hearing more from the missionaries (: haha. It is funny how there is a million dogs in the street it doesn`t suprise me that Josh has the same problems, you definitely need to watch out for yourself in the street or you`ll get chased down haah. I have been able to use my iPod I love it I want to figure out a way to put more music on it, I want some other music as well. As far as the bed bugs go, all the missionaries tell me that you`ll have problems your whole mission but were going to buy some stuff to help us with that problem. The time continues to fly everyweek...i`ll have been out about 6 months now. So crazy. Just like I say everyweek in my letters you learn something new everyday and you have to cherish the time you get here. Also something cool is Elder Uzeda is coming this week on Thursday to meet with the missionaries he`s from the chorum of the seventy, so that should be really cool. This week we had the baptism of Roger the son of Hermana Elohisa! Practically the whole family is members except for the dad of Roger but Elohisa and her husband are divorced and he doesn`t seem very interested to listen. But it`s been so cool to see the change and watch the process of conversion of this family! I hope Roger doesn`t have any problems with alcohol now but the members are really doing a good job to befriend him and he always goes to the ward activities so there shouldn`t be any problems. His older brother Paul was baptized four weeks ago and he is super strong in the church, as well as the mom Elohisa. All thanks to the members that always help us out! For this week we may have a baptism his name is Yuri he`s 16 (another reference of a member). We had a lesson with him about a week ago when I was on changes with one of the zone leaders in our area, and Yuri told us that he recieved the answer to his prayer about Joseph Smith and the Restauracion it was music to my ears! Haha. He just needs to get a couple of buddies inside of our ward, and we need to prep him a little bit more so he can be baptized he`s awesome though. We also have been teaching his mom but she has a lot of doubts, but is supporting her son Yuri in his decision to be baptized. Things are going good here in the area we never have to worry about not having people to teach so it`s been super nice, like I say all thanks to the members that help us out. I`ll be shooting out some letters tomorrow or today I`m thinking, as well as to some of my friends! LOVE YOU GUYS, talk to you next week :D -Christopher

Feb 20th Los Carnavales

How`s it going in Utah? Looks like you guys are getting a lot more snow now, which is good! Haha. To answer some of the questions you guys have, I`m doing good, my comp is really cool, the bed bugs keep biting me haha but not too much, I hope I come home soon too (but I still want to enjoy the time I have here :D 19 months haha), the waterfall was about twenty minutes out of the town I`m in, the members are doing really good, I have friends too, and I like the food I ate Seviche today but it was chicken soaked in lime juice. I got super sun burnt today haha, I forgot to wear sunscreen haha! So this was the week of Los Carnavales and it`s been pretty crazy here in Cajamarca, the people are drinking everywhere, having waterfights in the streets, and painting everything the streets the cars and other people ha. We haven`t been able to work very well because for the 18th-20th we couldn`t leave our apartment because of Los Carnavales. On the 18th we left with the members of the ward up to a little town to play soccer and hang out where it`s less crazy hah. It was pretty fun and relaxing. I guess the 18th is the craziest day out of the three. Where people are throwing paint everywhere, the streets were covered in paint until it rained. It rains so much here pretty much every day it keeps it nice and cool. On the 17th we did changes with the zone leaders like we do every change, and I was able to learn a lot from Elder Monzon. He came with me in our area for one day and it`s pretty much so that the zone leaders can see how the work is that were doing. We have two baptisms for this week, we hope anyways. One is Hermano Roger (21 years old) he is awesome, the younger brother of Paul and the son of Elohisa two of our converts. He has problems with alcohol but tells us that he`s going to change his life and follow Christ, he`s going to have a lot of challenges but I think he can do it. We also have Hermano Arcenio (14 years old), he`s a cool little kid. He told us "me quiero bautizar" so were going to keep working with him so he can be baptized, he only needs the permsion of his parents but he also told us that he drinks a little bit and asked us if he could drink after he is baptized! Hahah. It`s crazy how young people start drinking. It was a bummer we were in the street walking to our pension and we saw Juan Carlos one of our converts during the Carnavales and he was straight up drunk with his buddies. He also told us that he was ready to change his life and quit living his life the way he has been, it was so sad to see that he was drinking. Were going to try and talk with him and see what`s going on. I was pretty bummed out though. This week I was thinking a lot about how whenever you`re feeling bummed out or down on yourself you can think about what you have, the little things that you take for granted. Mom was always good to remind me of what I have, haha. Since I`ve been in Cajamarca i`m yet to really get down on myself so far the mission has been freaking pimp I love it. The city and all that we have to just work hard. But sometimes I get a little bummed out for little things and it`s really good to count your blessings. You are able to learn so much out here, everyday is a learning experience. I`m hoping that they keep me here forever in Cajamarca haha, I`ll have to serve in Chiclayo at one point but it`s so awesome here the members, and everything I love it. I`m going to write some letters today for reals, and actually get them sent out by tomorrow I hope! I have a lot of people that I need to write! I love you guys! :DD