Monday, March 31, 2014

Happy Birthday!



Hey everyone!!!

So this week was good.  We had a lot of changes and managed to get everything done.  One of the missionaries that we received is Elder Carrillo, my third companion.  It’s pretty cool to get to see him again and remembering the good old times in Nueva Cajamarca.  

IMG_3061On Tuesday, it was Elder Limon’s birthday so we had a "party".  It was kinda lucky that we had changes that day because we had a third missionary with us who was waiting for Elder Carrillo and that allowed us to divide so I could get him a cake and put it in the room.  He had no idea.  I also let him buy a soda.  He isn’t allowed to buy sodas because he's "getting his beach body ready" [meaning, he’s going home soon].  As you can see from the photos, Ihad the cake expertly designed and had his name written on it--"Limecito" which is Spanglish for “little lime”, in case any of you were curious.  Other than that, his birthday was basically just a normal day as a missionary.  I felt like I was at the Payne’s house because we just had a birthday cake sitting in the fridge for a week--the only difference being that we bought it because someone actually had a birthday... 

Later in the week, I went on a work visit in Campo Verde (or, for you gringos, Greenfield).  It’s this little branch half an hour away from the city that is part of the stake.  It is probably the area that is the most jungle-y of all of the places that I have seen because it’s just like this little town on the highway from Pucallpa to Lima that is really just like out in the middle of nowhere.  It is actually a really cool place and I was just walking through the jungle for that whole day.  It was kinda like Nueva Cajamarca but way smaller and there is no development there.  It’s basically the only area like that in the whole mission, for now at least.  I think it would be kinda cool to open up an area like that where its just this little town in the middle of nowhere but really I don’t think that Prez is going to open up very many of those so I'm not going to hold my breath on that one...haha


Then this weekend we had a baptism!!! his name is J* and he is 78.  He loves to talk and tell stories but he also loves the church.  In all honesty, the first time that I talked to him, I did not think that he was going to progress because he didn’t seem to have any interest in the Gospel beyond just having us to talk to.  Who'd have thought?  We had a training on cleaning of the chapel on Sunday and when we talked to him after, he was so excited to come clean the chapel...I guess you've just kinda got to know him to understand but it was really funny. 

On Sunday night, we had a really interesting meeting with the bishops, the Stake Presidency and the 4 zone leaders to talk about how to work together with members and missionaries.  Strangely enough, they had us direct a part of the meeting.  That was kinda weird but really cool.  I thought it was just cool to get to be a part of a meeting like that.

And mom, my area is like 5 by 6 blocks--there really is not much more that I can tell you about it.  It's dusty or muddy and it's tiny, basically all residential.  That’s about all there is to tell you.

Love you guys!!!!

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12

Tuesday, March 25, 2014


Hey everyone!

So I still don't know if I have changes yet, but they should be coming into my inbox any minute now....perks of being a zone leader is that I’ll see the changes before I leave the internet so I can tell you guys for sure right now instead of next week. But I will hold off on my real guess because I’m almost always wrong.  And the answer is...

                            ***I'm staying put***

So this week was really pretty cool.  There was another massive wedding that we organized.  I’m getting pretty good at that part actually.  Weddings seem to be getting easier to accomplish and I definitely understand that system a whole lot better at this point than I did when I started.  They do make it pretty tough here.  But that went  well and were having a really good month as a zone.

This week Elder Limon and I really wanted to have a family with a baptismal date and we were working really hard to get it.  We had 3 families that were going to have one but then didn’t go to church yesterday, and we were kinda bummed for them.  Then, out of nowhere we had a family come to church.  We had previously taught them, but they just did not want to get married [members of the Church agree to follow the Law of Chastity which requires that sexual relations be reserved for marriage between a man and a woman.  In Peru, often families live in committed relationships but have not gone the process of becoming legally married in the eyes of church and state].  After church, we went to their house to visit them and see what happened to get them to come back to church after like a month.  When we started talking to them, they were mad at us for stopping our visits with them  (they had really rejected us before).  Nearly out of nowhere they said that they want to get married and baptized!  This is the work of the Lord and when we do our part, the Lord will do the rest.  He is a God of miracles and He lives and loves all of His children.

Love you guys and I'm glad to be staying in Pucallpa for another change. I'm loving it out here!!

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Family History


So, I had one of those weeks this week where nothing really stuck out to me, it all just seemed kinda like all the other weeks, which sounds bad, but that's just how it is sometimes...

This week we had a special training with President Gomez and he taught us about the importance of family history work, which is weird because we really have never done anything with family history work at all.  So now, were going to use a book called My Family that is for getting you started with family history work, but we're supposed to be using that with everyone.  It was really interesting in all honesty, how we’re going to be using it and how relevant it really is to everything.  It makes me grateful and a little sad at the same time--grateful to have a family that has already done so much and a little sad because I probably won't even be able to do much because mom will already have all of it done for me which is really a good thing [oh, believe me, still much to be done!] But yeah, so mom if you could send me pictures of you, dad, grandparents and great-grandparents, I need to make my book.  I already have the names and dates and everything, I just have to put it in the book.  

Also, this week, I was with my District Leader (even zone leaders have district leaders!!) to take him to go and get one of our investigators (J*) for an interview  He wasn't at home.  The guy doesn't have a phone, but really hardly ever leaves his house if he's not working.  So I was surprised to not find him and I had no idea where he could possibly be.  So, I decided to just go and look for another family to teach and come back a little bit later.  We went to the other family and they weren’t there and out of nowhere, I felt like we should go to Isaac’s house (the member in the wheelchair).  So we just went over there.  He has this little room that’s always open on the front of his house (see the picture where we had cake with him) and it was closed which usually means that he's not there, so I thought that was IMG_2955weird.  But, as we get closer, we see that there are a few people there talking in front of his house, and there was J*  I had never seen the guy at Isaac’s house before.  It was pretty crazy.  I know that in that moment I was guided by the Spirit and it is always a great feeling to be just see it so clearly that the Spirit is guiding me.  I love this work.

Love you guys, hope you all have a great week.  Just one week left in this change...we'll see how this goes next week and I'll be sure to let you all know!

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12

[Random notes from other emails from Tyler…] I make smoothies every morning with fresh fruit.  Fruit is pretty cheap here, even if its not too varied, I'm still making some sick smoothies also with this protein powder we have here.  The advertisement has a guy with a 6-pack on it so I’m pretty excited about that.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

General Authorities, a Fake Future Stake President & Building Houses


This week was pretty awesome.  It was my first time ever meeting a General Authority [a member of Church Leadership]  and I got to train in front of him.  

We started the training at 8 and we all got to greet him and talk to Elder and Sister Grow for a minute, and take a picture (I don´t have that picture because they didn’t let me use my camera so maybe next week I'll have it) and then we started the training.  President and Hermana Gomez [mission president and his wife] spoke to us and then Elder and Sister Grow spoke, which was then followed by a training by the other zone leaders--who took forever.  According to the program, we were supposed to train before lunch, but then Elder Grow got up and took us all the way up until lunch.  At that point, I thought we weren't even going to train, and I didn't know how I felt about that. We had spent a lot of time preparing it, but I was nervous to do it.

We went to lunch in the cultural hall [the multi-use area typically found in the middle of LDS church buildings—often containing a basketball court] and Elder Grow calls me over and tells me that we are still going to train, but he’d like us to change it a little to do what he had just trained on.  In my head, I’m thinking:  Umm alright, so I guess I'll just get up there and try to follow up a General Authority’s training on the very same thing he just trained on--with like no preparation.  It actually went really well, surprisingly!  We talked about the importance setting and completing goals and doing it the Lord’s way.  It wasn’t exactly like how Elder Grow did it, which I think is ok, but it was the same idea.  He told me good job as we were finishing and sitting down.  

Elder Grow taught about goals, planning and working with the Spirit.   He talked a lot about the work of salvation and a program that we have here in this area (Elder Grow is part of the Area Presidency).  He also taught about the importance of the Book of Mormon in conversion.  A couple of people shared their conversion experiences and a majority of them were centered around the Book of Mormon.  It was pretty cool.  That night, Elder Grow trained the whole stake [a geographic organization of several wards, or local congregations]  on how to have a ward council [a meeting of local leadership] which was really cool.  He also told us about his goal on his mission to baptize a stake president [a Stake President is the leader of a stake.  He is a volunteer, called of God, and typically serves for a period of about 10 years.  It is a tremendous amount of responsibility and so a Stake President must have a strong testimony of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and provide a good example to the members of the Stake].  So I decided that was a really cool goal, which leads me to my next story....

Later in the week we were looking for families to teach.  We were in a part of the area we rarely go, and where there are no current members of the Church.  We were knocking a few doors (I don't do that very often anymore) and we see this guy get up and start talking to what appeared to be his children and said "now we’re going to read the Bible".  The thought instantly came into my mind that he just needs the Restoration and this guy will be a Stake President.  We asked if we could join them and they invited us in.  We were there for a few minutes talking with them and we soon figured out that he was not the father of the family, nor was it even a family.  He had invited children from off the street to listen to him and then he was about to pull out an envelope to collect offerings.  We decided that it was better that we left at that was probably one of the most awkward moments I've been a part of on my mission!  I have revised my initial impression:  I don’t think that guy will be a stake president very soon.  Maybe it was a “had to be there” moment?


Also, this week we got to build a house in this swamp-like was pretty cool.  In the morning, we had called our ward misison leader [the local member of the Church with the responsibility to coordinate missionary efforts within the ward/congregation’s boundaries] to ask him for a hammer and a saw and he asked us what we were doing and then instantly offered to go and help us—remember, this is the guy in a wheelchair--that guy is just the best!  It was the second house that I've helped build down here and I will just say that I love American made nails, they don't bend when you hit them with a hammer!

Love you guys and hope that everything is well!!!

Elder Peacock

P.S. I was telling Tyler that a mom of one of the sisters in his zone had contacted me this week, so I could see him in a few of her pictures on her blog, which was fun.  He responded, “did you know that half of the new missionaries already know me and ask about my blog when they start the mission?”  I don’t know if he considers that a benefit or a detriment, especially since he’s never even seen his own blog!

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

Trainings and Paperwork


So this week was really cool.  I just didn’t get a lot of time to proselyte.  We had a day of trainings with President and another 2 half days doing marriage paperwork.  The training is cool, but I am not a huge fan of doing marriage papers--and by not a huge fan, I mean I actually do not like doing them at all and they just take forever sometimes...

This week we had a baptism! his name is J* and he's the best.  What I really saw with him is that he really moved from the darkness to the light.  His former life was terrible and when we taught him it was really like someone just turned a spotlight on in his eyes and that was just all that he wanted to do.  I also saw that to be able to leave from that IMG_2999style of life is difficult.  Satan really just doesn’t want to let someone like that go and I don’t know if I've seen anyone have so many trials and obstacles to change his life.  I literally don't think I could possibly describe all of the things that he has been through in these last few weeks and even less, this weekend.  All I can really say is that it was crazy.  He basically got jumped on Saturday night after his baptism--that's really a simplified version of it, but that's all I can really describe.  He's ok and everything, but it's just like Satan does not want to let people change that is for sure.  

This week that is coming up is going to be crazy.  We have Elder Grow (from the 1st Quorum of the Seventy) coming out this week so we have to organize a lunch, a meeting with the missionaries, a meeting with the stake, Elder Limon and I have to train in front of him, our Zone has a special musical number, and we have to make him a fruit basket.  A fruit basket!  That's not even a joke.  But yeah, it's a lot for right now.  Wednesday is going to be stressful.  Oh, also, we have to keep teaching the gospel, which has now become the stress relieving part of being a missionary, which is pretty cool.

I love you guys and I hope all is going well!!!!

Elder Peacock

Alma 26:12  "Con sus fuerzas, puedo hacer todas las cosas" [Translation:  In His strength I can do all things]

PS  In response to his dad’s letter, Tyler wrote:

It's been really wet down here too, seeing as its the rainy season here, which is good because if it's not raining here, it's just an oven...glad to be with the rain!!

The 2nd suitcase doesn’t even matter, I probably wouldn’t use any of that stuff anyways.  It's just an extra expense to send a 2nd suitcase out here.