Saturday, February 17, 2018

Week 80

To start this week out on preparation-day we went to KFC and then slept for a while after haha it was awesome. 

On Tuesday we had our district meeting and then I did exchanges with Elder Halls in his area so that I could interview one of their investigators, who was this little 9 year old boy. Luckily, he knew the answers to the baptismal questions so it went pretty quickly. I think his mom made him study hahaha. But ya it was pretty fun until the assistant's called us and told us that they were having an emergency leadership council meeting the next morning at 7 A.M. So we ended up waking-up at 5:20 to be able to meet up with our companions and leave. Luckily, we got back to our room at like 6:00 so I got to sleep for another hour. 

On Wednesday we had another English class that actually went pretty well. We had some new Venezuelan dudes show up and they participated a ton and were super funny. One of them raised his hand and said "if pollo in English is chicken, would you say that repollo is rechicken?" and it was super dumb but everybody died because repollo is cabbage. 

On Thursday my companion had an appointment with that foot doctor that I went to see that one time in Miraflores. It was kinda weird going this time though because part of my area is Miraflores and we took 1 bus and got there in like 30 minutes instead of 2 hours like the last time. I had her check my feet out to see what she would say and she tested them on this ink board thing that makes an ink copy of my foot and she told me that I have super high arches and that I'm putting all of the pressure on these bones and whatnot so she convinced me to buy some specially made inserts that are supposed to help. She told me that if I go play football when I get back without them that I'm gonna destroy my feet, so I might buy some latex ones for my cleats. 

While we were there at the doctor Elder Farnsworth and Elder Roberts came and I got to talk to them. They are in La Molina Vieja and so they told me all about the stuff that's going on. They told me that Joyci, the lady I baptized, and Liliana, the lady that got baptized my first week when I got there, had a huge fight. They were best friends when I left but idk what happened exactly but they said that in the middle of Gospel Principles class they were yelling at each other... so I'm kinda sad that I missed seeing that. 

On Friday we had a zone planning session.  Cool and dumb at the same time...

On Saturday we went and did service in Vista Alegre with the elders. Their investigator was moving and so we went and helped him. We had to move everything from the 3rd floor down to the bottom and like a full block away and then up to the 5th floor, it took forever! We moved his washing machine, bed, book case etc. The cool thing was that he is from Boston and so I talked to him a little about that. 

Sunday was a good day. Like everybody that we are teaching came to church. At night we went and visited one of the members that is super dope. He told me that he owns a gym that uses those power plate things that vibrate. He offered to help me get back into shape so I'm asking for permission from president. He said he could hook me up with all of his supplements and vitamins and minerals too. He studied nutrition and whatnot so we will see what he knows and if I can get permission. 

But ya that's it for this week. We have a multi zone conference on Thursday, and then next week we are going to the temple. I still don't know what day but it will be either Tuesday or Wednesday so I will be emailing one of those two days. I heard that there is some Brazilian UFC fighter that is a member of the church so that is cool. The talk of this week was given in the last general conference by Tad R. Callister and it was so boss. Its called God´s Compelling Witness: The Book of Mormon here is the link: 

--

Elder Mortenson

Monday, February 5, 2018

Week 79

This week i did the same things that I did the last week and the week before that... but I will tell you about it nonetheless. 

Monday we just slept and cleaned the apartment. It was awesome sleeping for like 3 hours. We also went to Dominoes again with the boyz. 

Tuesday was just a normal day for us because Elder Malca and I stayed together. But ya turns out the mission forgot to contract a second bus. Because the way it works is one bus starts at one end of the mish and another bus at the other end and they drive the opposite ends. But they forgot to get a second one until like 3:30 in the afternoon and so the elders that we share our room with ended up getting back to the room at like 10 because the one arrived at the stake center at like 9:30 and the other had to just sit there and wait all day.

Wednesday was the first English class that we held. We had like 6 people come which was better than none and better than actually like contacting 6 different people. So that was good. We've been handing out tons of flyers still and so I think more people will keep coming, at least I hope so. 

On Thursday we went and did service for the lady that washes our clothes. We painted a room in her house. hahaha the bad thing was that there wasn't much ventilation in the room and so we were breathing a lot of the fumes in....but we did a good job! 

On Friday I did exchanges with Elder Hernandez to go interview their investigator. It was a pretty weird interview.  They are from Venezuela and her husband is a member, he was inactive but they are good now. But anyway I got through the majority of the interview and I asked her, just to make sure, if she was married. And so she said yes but then started telling me that she was only married civilly and didn't want to get married in the church and everything and I was thinking "Why would you not want to get sealed?" and that maybe she was having probs in the marriage but turns out she just didn't understand what it was. It was super funny though because she tried to tell me, after having explained about the sealing keys and the temple and whatnot, that she didn't think it was necessary and that in God´s eyes, her baptism would assure her salvation as a family etc. So I shared D&C 131 and helped her understand so she finally agreed that it was necessary. 

On Saturday we did service again for one of the investigators in Surco. We went and helped her move. It was kinda fun because all of the elders in the zone went but it also sucked because we had to carry her stuff to the seventh floor of the apartment building. 

Got a good fast in on Sunday. Also, we went and talked to our ward mission leader who just got back from vacation in Florida. He is dope and told me that he´s a dental technician which is pretty cool. I talked to him about how I wanted to study Odontology and whatnot so that's cool. He was showing me how he makes the molds and rebuilds the teeth and whatnot it was interesting. I was wondering though, do you think the dude that Dr. Lambert sent me to so he could match the color of my teeth and the shape for my implant was a dental technician? 
Because that dude was loaded. 

Anyway everything is going great. A sweet talk that I was reading this week was by our Prophet about the Book of Mormon. I'll share the link with you and I hope that you guys read it and ponder the questions that he asks in it! 


--
Elder Mortenson

Friday, February 2, 2018

Week 78

Yup the last week of that transfer is down...Another 6 weeks to go with Elder Malca haha, because we are staying together! 

So to start the week out on Monday we went to listen to "the most successful man in Peru". It was a super good speech! He talked about how he started out with nothing and whatnot and how in his mission he read the Book of Mormon and noticed how its main promise is that if we keep the commandments that God will make us to prosper and how that gave him this huge motivation. He talked about why God wants us to be prosperous and gave us tips on how to do things and it was super motivational. 

Practically all of the other days were normal. We started going to this huge park this is right in front of the chapel here and contacting for like 2 hours in the afternoon and it is going well! We found this old lady that ended up coming to church yesterday, which was a surprise. We also found this former investigator that we had dropped because she just didn't want to progress, we read the Lesson 1 pamphlet in the park and talked to her and convinced her to come to church as well so that was cool! She has tons of problems with her family that we are gonna have to work with but I think she could be baptized. 

On Friday we went to the "Auto-sufficiency Training" and it was super cool! Wow, we were there from 8:30 in the morning until 6 in the afternoon. The good news was that we got to one of the Avenues where all of the buses stop super early and I saw my old ward mission leader in La Molina Vieja and he was waiting for Miguel, the RM that always accompanied us, and it was super good to see them. But in the training they made us take our Patriarchal Blessings and look for words that describe us, things it invites us to do, and promises that are made to us. Then we had to go through this whole process of seeing who we are, what talents and abilities we have, what are our interests etc... then we had to make 5-year spiritual, career, family, education, etc... goals and 1 year goals and immediate actions. But ya, it was cool. The couple that gave the training were really effective and let us ask like a million questions, which was helpful. So honestly, my plans for the future didn't change because of that, they are just more formulated now.  

We have been organizing an English class here for a while now. We finally got the system figured out with it. The Bishop printed off 600 fliers and we did a couple of activities with the Young Single Adults in our ward to help pass them out and whatnot. But what the person that receives it has to do with it now, instead of just showing up on the specific day, they have to call the number on the flier and a sister in our ward answers and asks for all of their information and then gives us the name and address and we go and "test" their ability to speak while contacting them. Then, we call everyone and send out an email the day before the class reminding them to come.  Because they have committed beforehand, they come and then its not weird for us to ask for their address and if we can visit them, because we already have the information and they already know us and then we just slide our way in, help them feel the Spirit, and baptize them! Its cool. And the good news is we already have a ton of people signed up and we have only been passing out the invitations for a couple of days! So I hope it will turn out better than it did in La Molina Vieja. 

Yesterday we went to watch Carlos, a convert, open his mission call! He just barely hit 1 year as a convert and he got called to the Chiclayo mission! So that is pretty cool. He always accompanies us. Also, his best friend is Venezuelan that is from the Barranco ward and that is Jake Willmore´s ward so I talked to him for a long time and told him to ask Jake about all of the stories of the stuff we did hahahaha. So ya it was pretty cool. 

Today we are gonna go take out money and then eat and clean our apartment I think, nothing much. But anyway, all is going well. I hope you guys read that talk that I sent you because I am gonna be sending them weekly now so you better start reading them. This week´s talk is brought to you by Elder Holland, probably my favorite talk given by him. I will put the link here but I also suggest watching the Mormon Message on it, it comes with more power...


--

Elder Mortenson

Monday, January 22, 2018

Week 77
Yeet. So its been another good week here in Chicago Chico. Just lightin´ the place up with the gospel. 

So to start the week out, on Monday we went and ate buckets of chicken at KFC here in my area and then we watched Moana again but this time in English so that was cool. Hahah I got this random call while we were in the chapel watching it from this lady that spoke English. She told me that she had a package for a missionary in the Lima North Mission and that she couldn't get it to him and wanted to know if we could. I told her yes and so she told me that she was in Miraflores and could come find us so we gave her the direction to the chapel and she came with her husband. They were the Oakeson's from Sandy, UT and her husband said he had tons of family from Logan and Hyde Park which was cool. Anyway, she gave us the package and her husband gave us $21 and told us to go buy dinner. They took pics of us that mom should've got on her phone but anyway we went and bought Krispy Kreme with the money. 

On Tuesday we went and watched President Nelson´s message and press conference. That was cool... My favorite part was when that lady stood up and asked him about women in the church and why all the apostles were white men and Elder Oaks gave her a great answer. Haha We also had a lesson with the family that we are gonna baptize. We taught the Law of Chastity. One thing I have learned is that people don't understand what you are talking about or what they are doing wrong unless you are direct with them so I told them that they were fornicating and their 14 year old daughter ended up crying because she was laughing so hard at them, but ya they are definitely gonna get married now. 

On Wednesday we did exchanges. I went with Elder Halls to his area because they needed me to do 2 interviews but both of them fell through so we just ended up having a lesson with this one lady who wanted to be baptized but had problems forgiving her husband because he had pretty much abandoned her son when he had cancer and ended up dying. So we shared some good scriptures from Doctrine and Covenants about the Atonement and how Christ suffered not only for sins but also for sickness, pain, and every other type of suffering. And then we talked about how he did it for the people that he knew would never even accept him and then we talked about forgiveness and how her son would want this for her and she decided to be baptized after having been taught for like 5 transfers. I had to stay with Elder Halls all of Thursday practically as well (which I wasn't mad about) and then interview her and another lady.  Turns out that lady that we had talked to about forgiveness wanted me to baptize her, so on Saturday morning I went all the way back to their area and baptized her, so that was cool! Ill send pics. 

On Friday we had our Multi-zone conference. It was a good. They gave us pizza and talked about having the same vision. Sister Amato shared 1 Nephi 11 I believe and how Nephi desired to see the things which his father had seen and how we need to be able to desire to have to the same vision that our leaders have. That goes with the prophet, mission pres., bishop, etc... Then we can align our vision and work toward one single goal. It was a good message. I saw Elder Hunt there and all of my other homies. 

Saturday was the baptism and then Sunday was a funny day. So I really had to go to the bathroom so we were walking lightning fast through the streets to go to a member's house. And anyway like I said my area is pretty ghetto and all of the dudes are in the streets drinking all the time and sometimes fighting and whatnot. So we are walking and this dude yells ¨Whats up!? Where you from? ¨ and I'm like ¨Utah¨ and he is like ¨F"#"#$ you are a long way from  home!¨ and so I walked away and went and used the bathroom but then we went back to talk to him and he told me how he had lived in New Hampshire for 12 years and worked for Fidelity and how he always visited SLC and he had a friend that was Mormon and how his friend told him that when he went back to his country that he would see foreigners walking around in the streets that were called Elders and that he should talk to them in English and that they would be super hyped so he was just fulfilling his promise to his friend. But ya he told me all about the economic system of Peru and why the states are better and whatnot. And he had his homie there and at the end they were like ¨Yo, you ever get in trouble around here you tell them that you know Junco or Bayona and they'll leave you alone.¨ hahaha so ya lets just say that I got some hood-rat friends down here now so that is sic. 

But ya everything is going great! Today some dude is coming from Trujillo to talk to everyone that has less than 6 months left in the mission. He is like the most successful guy in Peru and is a returned missionary, so we are going to go listen to him. On Friday, I am going to an "Auto-sufficiency training" where they talk to us all about life after the mission and we set goals for work and studying and all that stuff so that will be cool. Anyway, SkyBi out.

--
Elder Mortenson

Friday, January 19, 2018

Week 76
So ya ´nother week down. To start the week out on Tuesday we went and bought the cake that I owed the family that we are teaching. I told the lady in the store to give me the type of cake that they like but she ended up giving me a tres leches and supposedly they don't like tres leches so the contract didn't really work out because my companion and I ended up eating the majority of the cake, but ya it was alright with me hahah. 

On Wednesday we received a message on our phone with a reference that lived in Miraflores, the super rich part of our area and it said that her husband was American so we went to look for the family. We ended up finding them and he came out to talk to us and it was a really interesting experience. He was from San Diego and was pretty cool and all but then I asked him what he did for a living and he went off on this whole thing. He told me that he had studied natureopathic medicine and so I asked him what that was and he explained to me that they study nutrition and all of this stuff and how doctors don't study nutrition, they only study how to treat a sickness and not how to cure it. He told me how they had found a cure for the AIDS virus through electrical pulses in the blood and how they can cure arthritis and diabetes and cancer and all of this stuff. He then continued telling me how I shouldn't eat wheat, barley, rye etc... because the protein chains that they contain are too complex for my body to breakdown and that gluten is dangerous, and how I should never cook things in oil because it is cancerous, and how I shouldn't eat corn because it is cancerous and all of this stuff.  My companion just sat there playing with a nearby bush because we were speaking English. But then he told me all about this company called Longevity and how I need to be on this 90 vitamin and mineral thing so that I can be healthier and all of this stuff. Just thought you M.D.'s at home would like to hear about that conversation. hahah 

On Friday we had interviews with president. They went really well. He talked to me a lot about going to play ball at USU and whatnot. He told me how I needed to be prepared to stay strong. I mentioned to him that the coaches wanted to call him and talk to him and he said that was fine and that he would be happy to work out that situation because he honestly loves ball.  He always talks about how in his ward at home, the new bishop is the Nike CEO´s bodyguard or something and how all of his kids play ball and he always shows me pics and videos on his phone so that is pretty cool. 

Sunday was a pretty good day. Haha we had a good attendance to church. The only thing is that Jorge, the dude we were gonna baptized this Saturday is going to Huancayo for his business all week so we gotta baptize him next week or in February now. But we were walking in the street and I saw this old dude working on an old Slug Bug so we went over and asked if we could help him out.  We ended up changing his mirrors and doing all of this stuff on the interior because he is fixing it to be able to sell it soon. We also helped this lady in the ward fix the electricity in her house. She burned a couple of cables and we went to one of the members that owns a tool store and got more and then went and changed them out, so that was fun. 

Outside of that nothing else really fun has happened. They changed some of the rules in the mission again and so now this is our new schedule to get on email. Its from 9-11 the morning here so I think that's 7-9 there. I like it because doing it in the afternoon kinda sucked. We also no longer have to wear suits to meeting and to church in the summer, which is awesome because sometimes we suffer! But ya that is about it. This week we are gonna watch and sustain the new prophet and then we have a multi-zone conference on Friday. Also the pope is gonna be coming here to Surco on Thursday. Idk what that day is gonna be like because everyone is gonna be in the street celebrating and wanting to see him so it could be dangerous. I saw in the street that they got their pope-mobile done and idk if I told you already that they are gonna spend like $40 mil on his visit alone so ya pretty interesting...

--
Elder Mortenson
Week 75

Yo waddup!?

So it was a normal week again. Just the same thing everyday but ya its chill! On Wednesday Elder Gozalvez did exchanges with me and it went pretty well. It was pretty weird being together again with the elder that trained me but it was pretty cool this time. He was in Surquillo, my area a long time ago and so he came back and showed me all of his old investigators and old references and whatnot that he had received when he was here. It went well. 

We ate lunch with the Llanos family and it was pretty sweet. They cooked a turkey they had saved from new year's so they gave us some. It was good. 

Last week I made a contract with some of our investigators. We are teaching a family that has never been to church. The aren't married and have 3 daughters, 2 of which are old enough to be baptized, but the elders have never been able to get them to church before which seemed weird to me. So I made a deal that if they went to stake conference by themselves, without our help, that I would buy them their favorite type of cake. But if they didn't go they had to make us some crazy food from the jungle that my companion loves. So anyway they went to stake conference and President Amato (the Mission President) spoke! In his talk, he invited everyone to get baptized, so it went really well that our investigators were there to hear that. Jorge, a dude that we are teaching, went as well and he is gonna get baptized pretty soon. Later, we introduced an "eternal investigator" to president and president invited him to get baptized, too... so ya its going pretty well. We should have some good baptisms for these upcoming months. 

Today was a good day though. We watched Moana, which was pretty cool and that's about it. I just hung out with Elder Brooksby and Halls all day. I had a dream last night that I got home with Elder Halls´ group so that was weird, not saying it was a sign.  I've been actually writing in my journal lately which is going really well. I'm trying to remember what happened in the last 8 months because that was the last time that I wrote hahhahhahah. Lets just say that being a Zone Leader for all of those months didn't leave me much time to write, but I am writing a lot of the past experiences I had so that I can at least have something to remember them with. 

But that is about it. I'm just enjoying my time here in Surquillo. 

--
Elder Mortenson
Week 74

It was good to talk to you guys on Christmas. Idk if anything has changed other than the fact Brett (Bryce's older brother) is now rocking the Thor look haha. 

So even though you guys are off from school the work continues onward. This week was actually normal. Now that I don't have so many responsibilities I don't have as many stories to tell you guys about either because it is 100% work in my area now. All is going well though as far as my companion and the area and everything. I found out that part of our area used to be called Chicago Chico because of how ghetto it is, so that is cool. I don't feel like it's that bad though...

So reflecting on my time as Zone Leader, I think the biggest thing that I learned was that you just gotta act like you know what you're doing and hope it will turn out fine. That was one of the biggest things Elder Garate taught me and so I'm applying it as a district leader now because when I give trainings I just act like I know what I'm doing, even though I've never been District Leader before. hahahha. 

I was just reading some things about Christ during these last couple of weeks and would like to share them with you guys. Christ had one single mission. The miracles he performed, the teaching he gave, nothing he did was of greater importance than the mission he had to fulfill. He understood why he had come to the earth when he testified of his mission before Pilate saying that unto that end had he been born. I was thinking about Amulek's teachings in Alma 34 about the atonement and what the words "infinite atonement" means. The atonement was infinite in every aspect; the being that performed it, the depth, the coverage, everything about it was infinite. That is why God could forgive sins before the atonement had even been performed, because he knew Christ would be faithful no matter what and would complete his mission. It doesn't matter where, when, or how we have done something, there is no gap in all of the universe that the atonement does not reach. Celebrating his birth, we celebrate his mission and what he did for each and every one of us. 

I would also like to share a couple of talks with you guys that really strengthened my faith. One talks about the book of Mormon and how it was translated and the other about the organization of the church. I will put the links in here. 

So all is well! It is now officially the last year of my mission. That is a kind of scary thing to think about. Weird to think that I didn't stand on American soil in all of 2017. But ya I hope that you guys really study the talks and that they can strengthen your faith as well. Sorry I don't have a ton of stuff to share in this email. 
12/23/17 (9 days ago)