Monday, March 27, 2017

Week 34

Here are some pics, a tool bathroom mirror pic before the baptism and everyone at the baptism. I will send more they just take forever to download here. And also just a reminder about conference this weekend. It really is our opportunity to receive personal revelation because the people that speak literally are speaking as if the Savior himself were there. I know I used to overlook general conference but I think I understand a little better now. I think the best way to prepare is to come with a few questions about what is going on right now in your lives and listen carefully for the spirit to tell you the answers. We get to watch it in English so that will be great!
So this week was a good week. We baptized Noemi and Sonia! Elder Hunt got to baptize Sonia and I got to baptize Noemi. It was a super good experience to see them both finally go through with their decision. They had some real doubts beforehand and we really had to work them through it and help them to see the goal up ahead, they have been through some really ugly things but now their lives have completely changed and they have found what they were looking for, how great is the gospel!?!

For pday today we went and got our haircuts, Elder Beach went for it today and just told the lady to give him a #2 razor on the whole thing because he was so sick of the heat and his thick curly hair so now he looks like he is about to enter the army or something. We went to the stake center and played capture the flag with socks filled with flour to throw at each other and then ate pizza and watched "Megamind" so that was chill. 

We had a multizone conference this week and that was pretty good. We had to give 3 minute talks on a favorite line of a hymn, I chose "Families can be Together Forever". They talked to us a lot about tactics on how to get into houses and whatnot and they brought up some really good ideas that I think I will use. I got to this area and we only proselyted in the mountains for some reason and I asked my comp why that was and he said that it was because his last comp didn't like to proselyte in the richer area (our area is actually pretty rich in parts) So I made him go with me and we contacted and contacted because it's like honestly right next to the church and we have had a lot of success there so far. 

We had to go to the Center of Lima again because my comp has tons of problems renewing his DNI so we took an hour trip and 25 sols in and spent 5 minutes and he was done and then took an hour trip and 25 sols out hahaha. But anyway, nothing much else exciting happened this week, we do about the same thing everyday so sorry if I don't have any cool stories. I think I have officially forgotten what the first world is like because sometimes I just forget that I am even in Peru.

I cant believe I'm about to hit a third of the way through the mission, holy cow it doesn't seem like it. Haha I think about the things that I thought I knew at home and what I know now and there is a huge difference. I was reflecting a lot on how I was at home and my expectations for the mission and I kinda laughed. One good thing that I did realize is that I am really good at making people laugh and the fact that I am speaking a different language hasn't changed that... But anyway I truly have learned the truth and importance of many things in my life. But really, I remember talking to President Walker and having him explain to me who created the world because I didn't know....sometimes I wish I would've taken more advantage of the opportunities I had to learn at home like in seminary, but what is done is done. Anyway if I had time to tell you all of the things I have learned so far I still don't think I could write them all. Lets just say I have changed a ton. Its been pretty cool so far... 

Much Love,

Elder Mortenson

Monday, March 20, 2017

Week 33
(Cutting bushes with a rusty machete.)

This week has I have just been worn out, I guess it's from the hard work.  But anyway, there have been tons of mud slides and floods that have gone down in Chosica and parts of Campoy, like houses have been swept away by the river and whatnot so they are taking missionaries out of those areas for a while. We received another companionship in our room because it is pretty huge. It is Elder Chau who I met in Santa Anita and Elder Beach, a new missionary. They are pretty dope, so it's fun. As for the houses and people that are being affected we really don't know that much. The river knocked down a bridge where they bring in tons of stuff like fruit and whatnot so the prices have gone up for the time being, but as for us we are totally fine. We are just trying to work hard.

Not a ton of stuff has happened this week. We found 18 new investigators though so that was pretty sweet. Haha There is section in our area that is actually pretty affluent that my companion has never contacted in....idk he says his last trainer didn't like to go there for some reason, but we have had a ton of success there!
We found a family of 5 that are super interested. The dad is most interested of all which is kinda weird because it usually isn't like that and so we invited them to a baptism yesterday, hopefully they come to church on Sunday.

We blessed this member's house because she really wanted us to. We have heard of some weird stuff happening with priesthood ordinances like where the priesthood holders won't actually touch the person's head.  

It was Elder Hunt's birthday this week on St. Patrick's Day so his parents sent him a package which he shared with us!  We haven't had water for about a week now, it goes on in the morning for like an hour maybe. (Probably due to the swollen rivers)  We have been showering out of a bucket that we fill-up so I mean it's better than nothing! The elders that arrived in our room were stuck in their room for 4 days before the water receded enough to where they could get out of the area and they hadn't showered in those 4 days. 

I am doing fine, its kinda crazy in a room with 6 and there isn't a ton of space but it's chill. The work is going really well for us right now. I just hope that those we have with dates will be baptized in the coming month as we are planning for. It's kinda hard always having to be the example to my comp. I found out I need to be stricter with him, sometimes I just let things go but we really need to learn. If he doesn't learn now idk when he will. But anyway thanks for the emails, Peace. 
Much Love,

Elder Mortenson

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Week 32

So this week was pretty sic. On Tuesday I got to take a visit to Zack"s mish (Lima Central)because I had to go and get my DNI at migrations and it's in the center of Lima. It is super cool over there, all of the buildings are super old structures and whatnot. I spent the whole morning from like 8 to 12 there just waiting for them to take my picture and fingerprints but at least I can now officially say that I am an official Peruvian! 

On Wednesday I went on divisions with Elder Macias our zone leader from Tegucigalpa, Honduras. He is super dope and taught me tons of new stuff about how to run things in the mish and just about life in general. 

On Thursday we went and did service for one of our investigators. She had us chop all of these branches down from above the wall outside of her house. It wasn't pleasant since it was 100000 degrees and i got soooo dirty, idk if you will be able to see it in the picture. But it was cool because I got to use a machete and just swing hardcore at some fetching plants. Also on Thursday we were going to interview one of the investigators that was gonna get baptized on Saturday but she has literally disappeared. We don't know what happened, she isn't at home, her sister doesn't know where she is and she doesn't answer her phone so I hope she turns up at some point. 

On Friday we had interviews again with president Boswell. He is a super inspiring guy. I talked to him about how I can not focus so much on the weaknesses I have, but rather strengthen the strengths I have and use them to help teach the gospel. I am still trying to figure out what those strengths are but I am doing pretty well I think. One thing I have found out is that I am a pretty dang funny person....even in Spanish lol. 

On Saturday Santos got baptized! It was pretty cool. He is a super good guy, and although he has some pretty harsh economic problems, he is super strong in his faith and so happy to be able to change his life for the better. He also received the priesthood on Sunday so that was cool to see! 

Yesterday was the average Sunday. The ward here is super good and cool and helps us out a lot. We had two of our new investigators come to church and they seemed to like it even though the little brother can be pretty hard to get to at times. 
 idk what happened but I accidentally got tons of grease on one of my shirts and my favorite tie so that stinks. I think I'll just save the shirt to burn when I hit a year...

Today we went to the chapel and played basketball in the hot sun. It was super fun, I sure miss playing ball at the SARC and the ARC with Brett and other homies. We kinda just chilled and talked about cool spiritual experiences and how you all are so lucky because tomorrow is taco tuesday at Cafe Rio, I sure miss it! But anyway, I am still doing great just working away trying to figure out who I am and what I can contribute. Scripture of the week Matt 24:25. How many times have I said that the church is true? 

Much Love,

Elder Mortenson
Week 31
Wow this week has been so dope. I can tell that this transfer is going to fly by! My new area is amazing haha they nicknamed it the promised land because of how humble the people are and how willing they are to listen to the gospel. It is pretty impoverished and there are parts in our area that are clear up in the mountains! But it is super cool and actually like 10 minutes from La Molina, the rich part. We have two baptisms on Saturday and two more lined up for the 25 and should have 2 more for the first of April if all goes well! Hahahaha I've taught more lessons here in one week than almost a full month in San Borja.

My new companion is a super good guy. He is 25 and was baptized 3 years ago and went inactive until about a year ago so he doesn't know a ton of stuff. I really have to help him learn the doctrine and solve his doubts. But it is ok because in our room there are two other elders and you guys will never guess who it is....Elder Hunt!!! My comp from the CCM. His companion is Elder Jañez from Chile and we have a good time. Elder Hunt and I have the most time in the mish in our room and practically in our district It is so cool to be able to discuss doctrinal topics with them in the room and learn a ton. 

Our zone is tight. Its the biggest zone in the mission. Like half of the zone are gringos so that is fun. Today for pday we played soccer and basketball and volleyball and cooked carne asada and watched Kung Fu panda. There is another elder here that is barely shorter than me, he is from South Jordan. I'll get a pic with him tomorrow and send it to you guys. 

We had a Luau on Friday night which was pretty cool. The members prepared tons of fruit and the young men and women did dances and stuff. It was pretty cool. All of our investigators came and really enjoyed it and have tons of friends now. The ward here is really good. Like most wards in Peru it can be dysfunctional at times but it is good. 

We are gonna go to the temple this week with a recent convert and do baptisms so that should be cool I haven't been to the temple with a convert yet! Our pension (A member woman who cooks meals for the missionaries) here is really nice and cool. Tons of Elders that I know have been in this area before. Our pension has a family tree so when I get put up I will take a pic and send it. 

But anyway that is about it, this is awesome and I think I will really enjoy this transfer. I have learned so much about more than just the gospel and hope to keep going. The spiritual thought for the week is a scripture that I love and use to answer tons of questions that investigators have. It's 1 Nephi 13:22.  

Much Love,

Elder Mortenson

Friday, March 3, 2017

Week 30

Que tal muchachos? Como les fue esta semana? So i am being transfered to Los Portales in Vitarte. I am going to have a Son!!! I am going to train Elder Muñoz in Vitarte. Idk how i feel haha i would'nt say that I'm necessarily ready to train someone but we will see how it goes. I will do my best. Vitarte is super ghetto and poor so that is great. I'm headed from one of the richest areas in the mish to one of the poorest haha. I will let you guys know how it goes next week with pictures and whatnot. I'm kinda sad to be leaving this nice area and nice ward and all of the people that i know here but that's the way the mission is I guess...the transfers come and go and you just gotta get used to leaving everyone behind and adapting to a new place again. 

Today for pday we spent the morning helping the sisters in our district move. It sucked haha. They are closing their area and putting elders there so idk why they even moved but we helped them anyway. From 6 in the morning until about 8 we had to move their stuff and there was a ton of it! But it was fine. We got lost trying to get back, took the wrong bus. Later we just chilled, went to the mall and ate burger king and walked around in the stores in the air-conditioning. It was pretty sweet, just like being back in the states. 

We had that training from Elder Falabella which was pretty cool. He just pretty much based what he taught off of what we said and gave us suggestions on how to improve. He gave some really cool ideas on ways to work with members better and whatnot. Nothing super huge that he said really impacted me so sorry. 

Haha i was thinking about it this week and I remember something Brett said about like after 4 or 5 months in the mish and you are forgotten by almost everyone. That's why I was so surprised that the USU coaches emailed me. But honestly it's so true, such is life I guess. 

If you guys could do me a favor and send me talks I would really appreciate that. I'm gonna print them out and study them so i dont want crap. I want like the Joseph Smith, McConkie, Maxwell, Bednar type deep doctrine stuff. I started reading the New Testament as well this week and it is going pretty well so far. I never even thought about reading it before the mish and so i know like nothing... so now is the time. 

I'm going to start trying to take more pictures for you guys. After talking to a lot of the RMs that's what they say they wish they had done the most. And some of them did it and have loads of pics and videos to share so I will start trying. 

But ya anyway that is about it, todo esta bien en zion. Saludos a todos. 

Much Love,

Elder Mortenson
Week 29

So this week went pretty well. We dunked the family! It was super cool to see them finally take the step that they had been waiting to take for so long. I will send pics. I got to baptize Alvaro, the older of the two sons. He is so dope and my comp baptized the younger son, and a member baptized the mom! 

I got you guyses package this week! haha holy fetch i doubt you could've sent more crap! Idk how I'm feeling about having to drag it to a new area if i get transferred next week.. But thanks a ton i really appreciate it. (Trish added: Can't you tell how grateful he is?)

We played white elephant this week among the missionaries and it was super funny. I will try to get the pics but elder peterson bought a pineapple and put a face on it and i got that and took some good pics ¨Chupando la piña¨ as they say here haha. 

I'll give a good shout-out to the old man´s birthday this week. Happy 63 or wherever you are at now! Hope that it goes well and you guys eat my share of the Harbors Bake at Red Lobster or whatever its called. I got you a present but I have yet to send it so just don't get your panties in a twist, it will arrive sooner or later. 

Elder Falabella is coming to talk to us this week on Wednesday. He is the area 70 here and half of the mission will go one day and half another. It should be pretty sweet to hear him speak he is a super good speaker and super powerful too. I will let you guys know how that goes next week. 

I was beginning to think the guys at home had forgotten about me but the emails are coming in today from Coach Wells and Maile. I'm keeping the focus on the mission for now but soon enough my time will come. 

We did splits this week with the assistants. We went in trios and it was super cool, we went with Elder Garate from Arequipa. He is super dope. He taught me so many cool things like how to learn scriptures and how to be a leader and whatnot. I just try to take advantage of all the divisions with more experienced elders because they really do know a lot more than i do and the way i see it is that it isn't necessary that i relearn everything that they have already learned when they can just tell me different ways that work best. 

Um its been a fairly short time since i emailed you last so that's about it haha. Today for pday we didn't really do anything. I found a place in San Borja that has a ton of homies practicing to be barbers and they give haircuts for free in the mornings so i got mine done today. We played cards and chess and wrestled in the chapel today and then some dude in the sisters ward fed us in his restaurant for free. 

Nothing else, hope all is well at home!