Peru Chiclayo Mission - March 2013-2015

Monday, June 24, 2013

It's my birthday!

Hello my family and friends that I just love sooo much (: I cant believe its my birthday and the last year I will be a teenager! Thank you mom for your love that you have for me! Everyday I count my blessings because of the love that we have for each other! Our family is so special and we really can laugh about anything!

I heard that the mail is being held until the 1st of July because they are switching mission offices right now. But i should get it soon. I usually get mail twice a week, from Paige or Noah!
That sounds like heck about your work! What some crazy experiences you have had already! But yeah, just pray about your jobs, and I know the lord will direct you. You are such an amazing hard working mom and I love you with all my heart.
Well, as you know, I am still here in AZ, which is weird because I thought that this past week I would leave but I feel like I needed to be here everyday this past week, so I'm okay (:
Monday, I made my birthday cake and it was sooo good, the zl's and my companion were too scared to put it in the bowl with milk haha but they still liked it! Then we had FHE with Ernesto (a really nice member) because he helps us out with everything. It was really good and spiritual, we played some games and talked about blessings. Then we helped an old lady move a T.V. in her house. When we got inside, she had about 15 dogs and it stunk so bad!
Keeping up our family tradition! Birthday cake in milk!!!
Tuesday, we visited Carlos and watched a movie, The Testaments, about Christ in the Americas. It showed the Crucifixion of Jesus Christ and after Carlos cried and he said that his life had changed and he feels so much more happiness in his life. Later that night, we taught the Familia Ruelas and asked the Wife and Daughter to be baptized but they don't know yet, so we will continue to work with them!
Wednesday we went through the Temple with President and his wife because they go home the 1st of July. After the temple we had a meeting with them and a lunch and it was really fun and very spiritual. Later that night  we went to Teresa's house. She is 35 and her dad died recently because of cancer. She isn't a member but she is very smart and is already reading the Book of Mormon. She just always has family problems so its hard to find her, but we are going to try and set up a baptismal date for her this coming week.
Thursday, Elder Duff was sick so we mainly just sat at the house but i studied and wrote you a letter mama (: But that night he felt a little better so we went to the Visitor Center with the Ruelas family and we watched little films about families. The parents have been together for 10 years and have 5 kids and guess what we found out...they are not married!! ):  But i think we'll be able to get them married. It'll take a little bit longer to get them baptized, but we shall see.
Friday we went to Carlos's house and watched a movie about Thomas S. Monson and he enjoyed it a lot. It was cool though because he told us to come over because he missed us haha it was so awesome! For Dinner, I ate cow intestines and I'm pretty sure the intestines were still digesting because it was not clean and tasted like poop! I almost threw up on the spot haha but i held it in! Luckily they had some steak (:
Saturday morning we had breakfast for Fathers Day. Carlos even brought some non-member work friends that we were able to talk to. We will send missionaries over soon because they live in phoenix. Later we dropped by Angie's house but she is in New Mexico for the next couple of weeks. But we taught her friend Alandra. She is also 13 and she thinks the church is so cool and interesting. We invited her to pray about it and tomorrow we hope to go to the Visitor Center with her.
Yesterday, I taught in sunday school! Crazy!! It was actually pretty hard. Even though i used simple Spanish, I think I was able to say everything I needed to! Carlos even payed his tithing and he felt so happy! He's a stud (: Later that night we had dinner and we had cow tongue tacos and they weren't so bad. I remember I had it once in Colorado, remember? so yeah. Then we watched the first presidency presentation about missionary work and it was amazing.
Today has been a wonderful day so far! We woke up at 5:30 and played 2 on 2 against the zone leaders and we won (: Elder Duff and I drained threes! Then we went to a thrift shop and i bought i light gray suit for only 13 bucks!!! And it fits perfectly! Oh...and guess what we are doing after this! We are going to go to the driving range and hit some balls! I cannot wait (: We heard it will be 116 degrees for 3 days in a row this week! deathWe are going to eat some amazing pizza at a members house tonight! and she is making me a birthday cake (: It also sounds like you are doing amazing and you will have a fun night for me! also, I am so excited for you all about the Manti pageant! You will just love the Raab family (:
The people that we are teaching are so awesome and so prepared I do feel really blessed! I do want to go to Peru. I just have no idea when. What a miracle it will be if I got it today on my birthday haha. But thanks  much for the cake. It really hit the spot!

I can't think of any questions right now. Oh guess what?  I am able to read preach my gospel in spanish! I can almost understand everything. It's just speaking that;s hard. I just feel like there is a big weight on me about spanish. but Ii know the Lord will take care of me!
Well I love you all. this past week I have felt a little stressed about everything. but I know that I will be okay because the Lord is helping me grow! I am so happy to be here serving and doing the Lord's work! Please count your blessings everyday.
I love you. He loves you.
Elder Smith

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

I feel so blessed

Family and Friends (:
Oh what a blessing it is to be able to email every week (: I have missed you all! That is so amazing about last Saturday and that you were all able to attend the temple! Saturday was so incredible and I'll get it to that later! Guess what? I got an email today and it was sent last Saturday about my visa! It said that it is with the consulate of Peru and that they are working on it! Everyone else in my district that was in the CCM with me got their visa and everyone is already there. So I think that my visa is coming soon! How exciting (: That's a great idea about the pancakes recipe and I will for sure try them soon (: Maybe the morning I leave to Peru! That is awesome about how much fun Allison is having and I am so excited for her about EFY. Mom and Dad, thank you so much for allowing me to do that a few years ago. It really blessed my life. Mom, continue to pray about your new work so that the Lord can guide you. You are such an amazing worker and you will receive many blessings in your life. What??? We have a firepit!?! I am so excited to be able to chill around the fire with my friends and all of you! That is seriously one of my favorite things to do!
I got your package and thank you so much! It was perfect for my birthday and so thoughtful! I opened it Saturday after the baptism! I love the pictures of everyone. Ha ha at first I couldn't tell that was Logan, because he looks kind of weird and different! It must have been the sun! I plan on making the cake soon, I just need to buy some eggs and I'm good to go (: thank you so much!
Monday, after emails, we went to this supermarket and they had awesome deals on fruit! It was 10lbs. of bananas for 1 dollar! Incredible right? So you know me, I loaded up on fruit and now we make a lot of smoothies! Later that night, we ate at Carlos's house and he's so amazing. He has absolutely no problem with any of the commandments!
Tuesday, we taught Rafael again (the scary, fighter looking guy) and he said he wanted to attend church, but yesterday he didn't show up. He seems interested, he wants to find the true church. We told him to pray about what we have been teaching. For dinner that night we at that Guatemalan family again. They fed us this weird soup with HUGE pieces of catfish in it! Also, octopus, potatoes, and other things haha. I still don't know if it was good! That night we taught the Family Ruelas. The dad is less active, the mom isn't a member. They have a girl whose 9, a girl whose 6, boy whose 4, and another boy who is 1 with a baby on the way! Only the dad is a member. The dad said that ever since we started talking to him, he started praying again and he said he wants to bring the family to church. They're really awesome and we hope to go to the visitor center this week and maybe set up 2 baptismal dates for the wife and the 9 year old girl (:
Wednesday, we taught Angie, (Alandra's Friend) she is 13 years old. Her mom doesn't really like us teaching her. But she told us she'll get over it, because she's really interested and she said she has been more happy and more religiously active since we've been talking. We hope to go to the Visitor Center as well this week! We want to ask her to be baptized but we don't think the mom will allow it but we shall see. Please pray for her mom's heart to be opened. Later that night, we went to the Visitor Center with Jose and we watched the Joseph Smith movie. He liked it but he has a lot of questions about everything and he loves the Bible a lot. I can see him coming around though because his wife is a member and his girl is getting baptized in July. Maybe he can join her? (:
Thursday we taught Carlos about Tithing and Fasting. He said he has no problem with any of it because he knows that he'll receive blessings when he pays tithing and he wants to help the church! Gosh, I freaking love him!!
Friday, after weekly planning, Carlos had his baptismal interview. It was hard to get him there though because he doesn't have insurance on his car, so if he got pulled over, he would've been deported. We tried to find him a ride, but no one in the ward could take him. He said he will say a prayer and come. But everything worked out and he made it (:
Saturday was baptism day! Carlos said he actually wanted a really good friend to baptize him. He was from Australia, didn't speak Spanish, and he was actually pretty rude to us. I was sort of bummed that I didn't do it, but it's okay because it's not my baptism! After I gave Carlos a big hug and he told me that he feels like an angel and he's so excited for this happy change in his life! (: He thanked me as well, he said I changed his life. Mom, I can't tell you how happy I was to have heard that. I feel so blessed.
Sunday, the Family Ruelas came to church! What a miracle because we weren't even expecting them! It was cool because all their little kids went on the stand and sang for their dad! I think they enjoyed it (: We plan on going to the Visitor Center with them on Thursday! Also, I was able to confirm Carlos into the church! It was hard because I have never done it before, especially in Spanish, but the spirit was able to guide me. I love Carlos. Then also, a boy who is 7 from the branch, ran up to me and told me I was his favorite missionary and gave me his candy that he got in Sunday school. Man this week was great!
I do feel that I am going to be leaving soon, who knows when. I feel happy with my Spanish and I feel happy with the work I have done in Arizona. It's just that everyone is in Peru already. I think my time is coming soon. We shall see. Thank you for your prayers and thanks for all that you have done for me. I have to get going now and be on my way to another week here in the blazing hot desert of apache junction, Arizona. I hope all will go well for you all and I love you all so much! maybe I'll talk to you soon?
I love you. He loves you.
Elder Smith

I have 30 seconds before it kicks me off. Mom I just want to say I love you one more time.
Elder Smith

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

I've started to blurt out Spanish words and forget English words!

Hello everyone!!! How wonderful it is to talk to you again!!
My companion is Elder Duff and he has been out 10 months and he's from Orlando Fl. He's pretty cool and we get along! Sometimes it's hard though because he doesn't really talk much so I’ve been forced to use my Spanish a lot this past week! He always seems sad so I’ve just been always trying to help him and lighten the mood and the car rides are pretty quiet. It’s hard sometimes, but it’s helping me to be more loving and patient. But I'm happy that the letter got to grandma and that you were all able to enjoy that! It's pretty easy to write in Spanish. It's a lot harder for me to speak it, but each day I get better and better!
That's crazy that Michael Boyd is leaving so soon! Congrats for him! Also congrats for Michael Biggs! Time goes by so fast when you aren't counting down, haha I can't believe he is already home! That's sweet that Chris got a new boat! That is something that I have been missing about the summer but it's all good! Tell Allison to keep on trying to water ski because it is so much fun when you can get up! I can't wait to see my missionary plaque in our ward’s Missionary wall!!
Okay thanks for sending my birthday package! I can't wait to get it! Yesterday was really crazy when I saw Sister Day's parents! They are so nice and I’ll for sure get in contact with them about my cookies!! Sometimes I have hard days, but there are always these moments that makes me so happy! When I see a happy family walking the street I just get so happy because it reminds me of our family!
Mom how have you been doing?  Dad, those pics of Tibble Fork are so insane and awesome! It blows me away! You look like you have lost some weight so Congrats dad and keep biking! I'm glad you are having fun while doing it!
Man what a week! It was pretty stressful and hard but Heavenly Father helped us so it went pretty smooth! Monday after emails, we went to a donation store and since I didn't have a pillow I bought a temperpedic pillow for only 3 bucks! I've been sleeping very well! Oh, while we were cleaning our car, I was vacuuming and my tie got stuck in the vacuum! So I pulled it out and the tie was all frayed and ruined haha but no worries...I was able to fix it!
My desk
Tuesday we had our "last supper" with the ZL's before transfers. One is from New Zealand (the North Island) he's still our zone leader right now and he's way cool. But the other Elder, Elder Vete (from Tonga) was getting transferred so he cooked us some way good food! Then that night we were supposed to go to the Visitor Center with Carlos but he couldn't because he had to work. Monday and Tuesday, we mainly went around saying goodbye to people for Elder Eskeets.
Wednesday was transfers! At transfer meeting I was really excited to see Elder Quiroz, but I found out that he got his visa!! He emailed me today and he said that Chiclayo is really beautiful and it's the best mission ever! Grr....I’m pretty jealous but I hope my time will come soon. I think other people that were in my MTC district got theirs as well! I wanna go...i wanna see Carlos get baptized and then I want to leave to Peru. Ah...i cant wait!! It’s going to be like getting to leave on my mission all over again! At the change conference,  I also saw Elder Seymour and Nielson and they told me that the Jimenez family still needs to get married! But I was able to text Jose (the dad) and he said he wants to be baptized and he thanked me for the tie again so I was grateful for that! After transfers, we were supposed to go to the Visitor Center again with Carlos but he never showed up because he fell asleep. He had me pretty nervous!
Thursday was pretty hard. We got lost a lot because I barely know the area and like no one was home! But we talked to this guy named Rafael. We were just asking him where someone lives and he let us in! He's kind of scary and looks like a fighter! We taught him about the Book of Mormon and he seems interested! So we shall see what happens, we will teach him tomorrow!
Friday, we thankfully got a GPS so we aren't lost anymore (: That night we taught Carlos! We taught him the Gospel of Jesus Christ and it was amazing! He told us that ever since we started talking to him, he quit smoking and drinking! He seems so ready to be baptized! He's such a miracle! If I’m here, he said he wants me to do the baptism and I’m very excited! It's so cool that it’s on the same day as Paige’s anniversary! Crazy (:
Me, Carlos, Elder Duff, and Ernesto (an awesome ward member that always helps us out!)
Saturday we went by this girls Alandra's house (an investigator) and her friend was over. They're both 13 and we taught them the restoration. They both thought it was very cool and spiritual so they told us to come back on Tuesday (tomorrow) and teach them and I’m very excited!
Sunday Carlos came to church. During sacrament meeting he told us he thought he saw angels around us while we were blessing the sacrament! Isn't that insane????? But he is so awesome, he sang, asked questions, he is very involved! After church we went to the visitor center with him and we saw the Joseph smith movie and he loved it! Then on our way back, he bought us water and snacks! Tonight we are teaching him and having dinner because he wants to feed us! Yay!!! Yesterday when we were at the visitor center walking around the temple , this little kid ran up to me and he's probably 6, he asked me for my autograph and he had me take a picture with him! Haha I just love being a missionary (: it’s very special.
I'm doing pretty well out here. You’re right mom, I just need to relax. I've only been out a few months and already I have learned a lot! I just wonder how I’m doing though. I guess I’ll continue to pray about it! This past week I even started to blurt out Spanish words and forgetting English words! Haha it’s finally happening! Heavenly has blessed us all and estoy muy agradecido a tenerle en mi vida.
Well I love you all and please continue to be a great family! Hopefully I’ll be able to talk to you soon on the phone about my visa! But we'll see. Sometimes it’s hard for me because I miss everyone so much! But I try not to think about all the stuff I’ll miss out on because it makes me sad! The mission is so amazing! it really helps you to become the man that you need to be! It’s really exciting! Yeah, yesterday when that happened with that little boy, it made me really happy! I love how that I just stand out from the regular world! Everyone always asks if we get paid for doing this, and I love telling them no.  It’s such a blessing to be here! Well now I have to go. Thank you for working so hard for our family. I love you all and I can’t wait to get your package! Thanks mom....for everything.
I love you. He loves you.
Elder Smith

Yo quiero decir que te amo mucho mama. estoy agradecido por tu y que tengo la oportunidad ser aparte de nuestra familia.
ahora, es un poquito deficil por me a aprender espanol y yo se extranero mucho. pero, yo se que estoy recibiendo oraciones y bendiciones cada dio y  estas cierto, necesito ser tranquillo porque este tiempo es un bendicion por mi y necesito hacerlo con todo mi corazon!
A veces, quiero ir a peru y ser en mi propio mision. peru yo se que dios me necesita aqui en arizona y ensenar carlos y todo de nuestros investigadores! Espero que todo sera bien con El y que puedo bautizarle. Pero es acerca de dios y su plan verdad?
ayer, tuvimos cena con una familia de guatemala y estan muy amable! Siento que yo estaba a la casa de mi abuela, angie! Estaba muy feliz y estoy muy agradecido por eso.
mama, yo te extranero y gracias por todo lo que haces por mi. yo se que un dia, seramos juntos para siempre! que marvilloso, que bonito.
mama, te amo mucho con todo mi corazon y espero que estas bien.
Elder Smith (Tu misionero, Tu Hijo)

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Lord is with me every step of the way

Hi everyone (:

Wow how exciting that is to hear about the boys soccer team!! (: (: way to go LEHI!!!!!!
Way to go dad on your biking! I wanna bike a little bit when I get back! I have grown to love biking in my last area! Keep it up and go Miami Heat! I hope they win because I hate the Spurs! That's really cool about Allison and her summer plans! I am very excited for her to go to California and all of her stuff that she will be doing!
This past week was quite awesome. On P-Day, after getting haircuts from our zone leader and shopping, we went to a membe'rs house for our zone activity and the house was huge! We had a barbecue with a lot of food and snacks! We also watched 17 miracles in their movie theater room and it was so relaxing and awesome!
Tuesday, I had the chance to go to the Temple again because this zone didn't go yet (we go once a change as a zone). After, one of our investigators cancelled on us...again. Her name is Abigail and she always forgets but she promised us that she would come to church with us. That night we went to dinner at a member's house but the food wasn't ready, so we helped and made amazing shrimp tacos, with beans, rice, salsa, guacamole, and homemade strawberry juice (delicious). Also that family is from Guatemala so I felt at home! Then that night we taught a man named Carlos and he is super nice and always gives us food and snacks and he listens very intently! So we were very excited about him!!
Eating a grasshopper, it was disgusting by the way~
Wednesday, we played ultimate frisbee as a zone in the morning and it was a lot of fun! Then that afternoon we talked with some crazy teens who were drunk haha so they aren't interested at all but it was still kinda funny because they were so out of it! Something that's also funny here is the Chihuahuas and small dogs that are always in the trailer parks! They always bark so loud and chase after us but we always just freak out at them and they just run away and it's a lot of fun to mess with them!
Thursday we had District Meeting. Elder Eskeets is the District Leader and it was very special and it made me want to work even harder because we talked about things that could help us improve in the mission. Later that night, we talked to Carlos again about the Restoration. I was able to teach him a lot and I understood mostly everything! The spirit was so strong and I knew he was interested so I asked him to be baptized and guess what!!! He said yes and we have a date set for him on the 15th of June!! What a huge blessing that is for us (: he's about Early 30's and is just the nicest guy ever! He's from Mexico and we are going to have dinner with him tomorrow because he invited us (:
Friday, we played basketball as a zone in the morning and it was a lot of fun! I made a lot of 3's and we won! Then we had a set up visitor center appointment with an investigator and his family (Abraham and Judith with their 3 kids who are young). Well, when we went to go pick them up, Abraham was on a call with a job interview so we waited outside their trailer in 103 degree weather for like an hour! Finally, Abraham came out and said his family is too tired to go but he still wanted to come, so we went with just him. it was very spiritual and we watched the Joseph smith movie. but I have a hard time reading him. He mainly only believes in his church and the bible so we'll see what happens this week.

Saturday we planned for this week and then had dinner. A member took us out to eat at a Chinese Restaurant and it was very yummy! Then that night, we taught Carlos the Plan of Salvation. Again, I was able to say what I needed to. It was so awesome and such a blessing. He said he knows it's true. We have a visitor center trip with him tomorrow after dinner! I'm so excited! Then we had transfer calls and I'm staying here in apache junction. So soon to be still the Mesa Mission. So, if my visa doesn't come, I'll be able to stay for Carlos's Baptism and maybe even baptize him (: Elder Eskeets is going though to another area that will soon be in the Scottsdale mission. I'm getting a new companion on wed. Elder Duff, I heard he's really cool so I'm excited! However, I'll be in charge mainly this week and it'll be hard because I hardly know the area like where people live, and the investigators are placed in my hands, and my Spanish will be put to the test so please pray for me! But I know the lord will provide a way (:

Yesterday during church we had 3 investigators come to church!! Carlos, Abigail, as she promised, and Jose Lopez. It was very cool and I understood mostly all of church. I can understand church things very well, but I can't really understand real world talk. I also have a hard time speaking it. I know a lot of words, they're just hard to use sometimes but I'll get it one day (;
This past week has been such a blessing for me. Elder Eskeets and I were blessed very much this past week. One of the blessings we had was that we missed being in a huge car accident. We had a feeling that we should just talk to one more person before we left to head home. So we did and it took about 15 minutes. during those minutes we heard a huge bang. On our way home, we saw a huge accident that had happened. without us listening to the spirit, that could have been us. I am so grateful that he is watching out for us missionaries.
Mom I love you and miss you so much. Thanks so much for your thoughts and suggestions and I will use that for sure! I can't even explain my love for you. Thanks for everything mom. I was thinking of you all on Memorial Day and those cute little punk cousins of mine just playing with legos! I hope you all had a blast! Noah is just the best. I get a letter from him like once a week with all these different scriptures and he helps me so much! He has such a strong testimony.

The bachelorette sounds intense and I wish I could be there to see it because Dez is the bomb! but that's really cool that Paige came over to see it with you guys! haha you all are the best (:

The hoarders house was exactly like those shows you used to watch Mom! The food was all over and the bugs were running everywhere! Not to mention it was in the trailer with hardly any air conditioning! 

Having a car is nice! Especially now that it's starting to get even hotter here! I do miss riding a bike though but I should be grateful!! We mainly park the car in a neighborhood and walk to our lesson, while talking to people that are outside on the way. so it's still pretty miserable but we always have water!!

I just hope I'm here to get your package because if I get my visa, they'll send me off to Peru the next day ! so we shall see! but okay that sounds like a good plan (: thanks mom!

I'm off to another week in the field. Please pray for me, as I will mainly be in charge for a few days. I don't really know the area or the language so I'm kind of stressing, but the Lord is with me every step of the way so it will all work out. Be safe, be happy, remember I love you and I'm here for you guys! Thank you so much for your prayers and support! Have a fantastic week and remember who you represent!
I love you. He loves you.
Elder Smith