Monday, October 26, 2015

Week 7 - October 20 - 26 (Cajamarca)

Jonah arrived in the Trujillo North Mission and today we found out he was assigned to work in Cajamarca.  Specifically the Baños del Inca area.  When he arrived he found out that he is in the same location that Sister Candace Nielsen is working.  She is also from Caldwell, definitely a small world He seems to have had an amazing week.  Unfortunately his camera did not upload photos this week so we will be posting some pictures from the blog of the Mission President

Heyyyyy Everybody! So I kinda had the biggest 2 weeks (ish) in mylife! It was incredibly memorable and I can't believe that I've madeit to my area with my new companion! So I'm basically gonna skipeverything that happened in the CCM because it was super boring andjust classes. Except the last day! We found out that only the TrujilloNorth mission would be leaving a whole day early on Monday instead ofTuesday! So that was super crazy and terrifying haha. But yeah, onMonday all we did was travel and get settled in at the mission homefor one night. The mission home is a little slice of the USA in Peruhaha. Anyway, now I'll start with the good stuff :)
On Tuesday, we had some introduction classes in the mission homewith the AP's and Presidente Marler. We had a short interview, andthen we were told that we would be assigned our new companions andareas in a few short hours. We walked to the chapel when it was time,and we all sat down in the capilla across from the trainers. Theyannounced my name first, and so my new companion for at least the next12 weeks is Elder Salinas!! He is so fantastic! He's from Lima Peru,and he's been in the field now for 9 months. And we have been assignedto the Cajamarca, Baños del Inca Area!! It's at roughly 8500 feetwhich is super loco, and it reminds me a lot of Idaho because there'stons of farms and vaqueros and cows haha. Anyway, we then learned thatit would be a 7 hour bus ride which kinda stinks but whatever :)
On Thursday, all we did was travel haha. But yeah, there were about10000 turns on the way there on this super sketch road, so about anhour away from Cajamarca, vomitè lol. We arrived safely and then haddinner with the missionaries in my ward. And get this. Hermana Nielsen(Candice Nielsen) is in my ward! Probably the most loco coincidence inthe world haha. Then we taught a Noche de Hogar with the Hermanaswhich was still hard for me to comprehend because Hermana Nielsen, inmy same stake, was teaching a family in Spanish with me lol.
On Friday, I was super humbled. In more than one way. During ourlessons in proselyting, I had no idea what was going on for more than50% of the time. Elder Salinas is a phenomenal teacher, but whenever Iwould say something, I would stumble everywhere, conjugateincorrectly, and basically repeated what was just said haha. Anyway,we also visited a less active that lived in super poor conditions. Hishouse was completely made of stone and dirt, except for thedeteriorating wood ceiling. He was bed-ridden, but still has a superstrong desire to learn the gospel. He seems super happy even in histough conditions.
On Saturday, Elder Salinas started to get up 15 minutes early to gofor a run every morning and it is so fantastic :) We had a zone anddistrict meeting and it was super cool to meet everybody. Also, I hadthe best Lomo Saltado in my life, and I had to take a picture of it.Our pensionista is a miracle worker! 
On Sunday, we had a multi-stake conference with a live broadcast ofElder Neil L Andersen. It was specifically for just Bolivia and Peruwhich was super cool. Elder Andersen tried to speak Spanish eventhough he only knows Portuguese, but it was super cool to hear him. Itwas super easy to understand him because he talked really slow haha.Also, Sunday night, I had my first door contact and it was terrifyinghaha. But we are going to teach them on Tuesday!!
Well that pretty much sums up everything. I've been working super hardon my Spanish and I feel like I've learned a whole ton. But also Ihave a whole bunch more to learn. I've been humbled every day here andmy new catch phrase is 'otra vez, pero mas lento por favor' haha. Ican't wait to teach more and to bless peoples' lives cada dia. It'sprobably the coolest thing that I will ever be able to do. Alright!Love you all! ¡Viva Perù!
Elders at the Mission home - Jonah playing the Piano

Elder Marshall teaching Elder Wynn, Elder Babbel and Elder Herde about the mission rules

Herrmana Esmelda and Hermana Alicia preparing lomo saltado

Lomo Saltado - Happy Elders

Jonah - giving a piano concert

Elder Babbel and Elder Salinas

Elder Salinas, President Marler and Elder Babbel

Leaving the mission home and off to their new assigned areas - Catamarca for Jonah!

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Week 6: October 15 - October 19

We had a bit of a surprise this week.  On Monday we received a notice that Jonah's debit card was charged by a Lima Airline.  Well today we found out Jonah left a day early (yesterday) and is now in Trujillo, Peru!  Done with training and ready to go to work.  He was able to send a very short email which you can find below.  We won't be able to get an update until next Monday.  The good news is that President Sister Marler do keep a blog and they took pictures of the missionaries arriving at the Airport!  So Jonah looks happy and skinny (nothing new). 

Hey! So I officially arrived in Trujillo Peru! We were a little thrown off because we left a day earlier than everyone else. I'm safe and well and just about to get assigned a mission and a companion. I love you all so much! Let everyone know I won't be able to respond until Monday 
Viva Peru!

Arriving at the Trujillo Airport
Greeting the Missionaries (President and Sister Marler)

The new Welcome sign for Trujillo North Mission

On the bus heading to the Mission Home

A stop at the new Trujillo Temple

At the Mission Home

Just found this charge on his debit card - maybe not starving -
seriously they are everywhere

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Week 5 - Oct 8 - Oct 14

Jonah is doing great at the CCM.  He is entering his final week and will be flying to Trujillo on Tuesday October 20th.  He is excited to enter the Trujillo North Mission, and he is growing a bit tired of the CCM's chicken and rice.  He has expressed some worry about missing american candy, Cliff Bars and milk.  He has found that there are some great Peruvian hot dogs and if anyone has a good recipe for guinea pig he might appreciate it.  Here is his latest letter:

Hello Everybody! All is well in Peru this week, and things just keep getting better every week! It's hard to believe that I will be leaving the CCM in 5 days and going out into the real world. It's kind of scary because my spanish is completely limited to teaching a lesson. I don't know how to actually talk to people yet haha. But all is well and God will provide :)
On Thursday, we had a meeting with the CCM President, Presidente Gonzalez. He's a total G haha. He's the most intimidating 5 foot nothin man I have ever met, but every once in a while, he'll say something super hilarious. We also had the oppurtunity to give a blessing to Elder Herde, and he recovered quickly from his illness which was pretty sweet. It was awesome just having the whole room stand in on a blessing for one of our fellow Elderes :)
On Friday, we sat in class for 7 hours. Again haha. But yeah, just an average day with nothing really going on.
On Saturday, I kinda had a rough day. I almost completely lost my voice and my throat was killing me, but we still had to teach 2 lessons. Plus, the zone leaders have to go around and interview all of the Elders in the whole CCM which takes a lot of talking. But I'm all good in the hood ahora.
On Sunday,  I finally memorized the compromiso bautismal, el Primero Visión, y Santiago 1:5. Super essential on a mission. :) We also got to hear from Jeffrey R. Holland in an online, recorded devotional just for missionaries. His talks are so powerful and faith-instilling, and chastizing haha.
On Monday, we taught Yosimar and it was super tough. He had all theses uper tough questions and he mumbled and a thousand miles an hour. But we still did well (enough lol) but the main thing is we try our best to invite the Spirit. As long as we can invite the Spirit, and the investigador can feel it, we don't even have to worry about anything else.
On Tuesday, we had an Area 70 come. His name was Elder Lezano and he gave a great talk about his experience on his mission. He also talked about his Mom's conversion story and how it could only have happened with the persistance of missionaries. He encouraged us to have the same kind of persistance on our own missions.
Today, we went to the temple again and went to Tottus, a grocery store, and got the flippin fantastic hotdogs again. Also, Pringles are saving me right now. So thankful for Pringles everyday :)
I love the simplicity of the gospel. It is truly incredible how we are able to teach in Spanish already. I know God lives, and I know there are miracles because the fact that we are doing this is a miracle. I love and pray for everyone back at home! ¡Viva Perú!

Oh yeah, fav scriptures of the week:
Ephesians 6:14-19 Whole armor of God and the Spirit is your tool of advancement
Mosiah 21:16 
Mosiah 23:11 --> Alma 26:11-16

Mosiah 24:21-22
Galatians 5:22-23 --> Matthew 7:20
Nefi 15:8

Mosiah 24:15  tenía la paciencia a persevera con sus cargas :)
Psalms 23   Derecho Fuego :) 

Elder Babbel and Elder Wynn

Fountains on the CCM campus
Cool Peruvian Llama ties!

Another Fountain - He promised to take more pictures next time :)

Monday, October 12, 2015

Week 4 - October 1 - 7

Jonah has been working very hard and his enthusiasm shows in his latest letter.  In his letter he mentions that he is now a Zone Leader with his companion Elder Wynn.  They are assigned to be leaders of the English speaking missionaries in the CCM. They will be responsible for helping to organize and run meetings and interview other missionaries.

Hola everybody! Sorry for the shorter email last week, I totally
spaced bringing my journal, but I have it this time! So this last week
was super fantastic. We've been teaching more and have had much more
difficult investigadores. Our new guy's name is Yosimar, and he always
pretends like he's falling asleep whenever we teach him which is
pretty discouraging haha. But Elder Wynn and I are getting much better
at teaching in Spanish and building off of each other's testimonies.

So on Thursday, We watched a talk by Elder Bednar and it was super
awesome. I had seen it before, but it's way more applicable now
because I'm on my mission. I'll take a picture of my journal so you
guys can see the story and hopefully be able to decrypt my handwriting
lol. (rather than attach his pictures here is a link to the talk)
On Friday, we taught Matias again and it went super well. It's super
weird because the first 3 weeks, we could barely fill 10-15 minutes,
but in now, 25 minutes is way too short.

On Saturday, we had our first day of General Conference woot woot! My
favorite talks were by Dieter F. Uchtdorf, and Jeffrey R. Holland.
Uchtdorf talked about simplifying our approach to discipleship and how
the gospel isn't complicated. Sometimes it can seem that way just
because it's new, but I've found the gospel to not only be true, but
incredibly simple and practical. Elder Holland spoke about how a
mother's love is the closest comparison to Christ's love. It was
basically a big shout out to Mom's everywhere, so I highly recommend
people post it around on Facebook.

On Sunday,  we had another day of General Conference woot woot! I
really enjoyed hearing from the 3 new apostles that were called this
conference. I also super enjoyed Elder Koichi Aoyagi's talk about
trials. Sometimes it's really confusing why good people seem to face
difficult trials. And it almost seems like you're being punished for
no reason. But I can assure you that trials are a blessing and keep us
moving and keep us humble. Sometimes it's just a way of God saying
that we need to rely less on our own strength, and more on Jesus
Christ and His Atonement. Stellar talk :)

On Monday, Elder Wynn and I were called as Zone Leaders which is
pretty cool! We are now responsible for all of the non-Latino
missionaries in the whole CCM, which means a whole bunch of extra
responsiblities, but it's also a huge honor that we were chosen.

On Tuesday, it was just an average day until we taught our lesson that
night. Elder Wynn and I did super awesome! Our teacher was super
impressed at our level of Spanish, but honestly, it wasn't even us. I
phrased sentences that I had never even done before while practicing
in class. It was completely guided by the Spirit, and it was just
incredible to be a vessel of the Holy Ghost. I hope that we can more
lessons just like that one.

Today, we went to this huge supermarket place called Metros, and it
was loco crazy haha. It was jam packed and the streets were
overflowing with people and cars and craziness. But it was a super
awesome experience, because Elder Wynn and I were able to talk to this
super sweet old lady about the gospel, and about how it could help her
in her life. We bore our testimonies about how our lives have been
changed by the gospel, and how the Book of Mormon taught of Jesus
Christ and his ministery in the Americas. We gave her a book of Mormon
and she said that she would read and pray about it. She was seriously
the sweetest thing, talking slower and using simple words because she
could obviously tell that we were super white haha.

Alright, so that was basically everything that happened this week! I
love you all! I'll send pictures! Oh yeah, and my favorite scriptures of
the week are below :)

Mosiah 4:19-20
Mosiah 5:15
Alma 36:25
1 Nephi 3:7 (ire y hare)
Mosiah 7:19
1 Nephi 4:34
3 Nephi 27:27
D&C 122:7-9
Mosiah 14:3-5
D&C 121:45-46
Haha sorry that was a lot, but these are all fantastic! 1 Nephi 3:7 is
way better in Spanish btw :)

Jonah with his new Peruvian Soccer Jersey

Jonah and Elder Herde

Jonah and Elder Zorate, who just left to Bolivia