Monday, December 27, 2010

He’s outta here…(finally)

That sound you heard at 11:25 a.m. PDT this morning was Elder Justin crossing into Mexican Airspace for the first time.  Mexico at last.  Delta Airlines flight 513 from Salt Lake City (SLC) to Mexico City (MEX).  Non-stop.  But we’re sure it was coach, and more than likely a middle seat!

Justin Enters Mexico (Finally!)

We got to talk to him (all of us) for about an hour on Christmas morning.  And again this morning Mom and Dad got to talk with Elder Justin for about a half an hour from the Salt Lake airport.  (The brothers don’t get up before 9 a.m. during the holidays.)

He is in excellent spirits, and SOOOOOOOOOOOOO excited to finally get to his real field of labor.  He was so stoked this morning that his two suitcases weighted exactly 50 pounds each—so no excess baggage charges.  However, his one carry-on weighed “about 100 pounds”, so he was not excited about schlepping that all the way to his new apartment.

He was traveling with a number of Visa waiters, including (at least) three missionaries from his MTC district.

From the rear-view mirror perspective, we think the Salt Lake City experience has been a wonderful soft landing into being a missionary.

[posted by Jeff]

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Christmas Jig In Honor of Some of Our Favorite Missionaries

(Thanks Cassandra!)


Elder Collin Gingrich – Colorado-Colorado Springs (Spanish)

Elder Justin Peacock – Mexico-Mexico City West (Spanish)

Elder Mitchel Morris – South Africa–Johannesburg (English)

Elder Patrick Spiker – Argentina-Salta (Spanish)

Elder Tanner Dahl – Australia-Brisbane (English)

(I think I got the mission names correct—apologies if not!)

December 27 2010--9:48 a.m.

Is the time of my flight to Mexico City!!!!!!!!!!!

It came. My Visa came and I am going to Mexico.  Just when I was starting to think that it would never come. I was told on Friday and yesterday I went to sign at the Consulate. I signed, everything went well, and today I got my flight itinerary. I will leave on Monday. Elder Juker and Elder Reynolds from my MTC district will be on the same flight, along with two other elders here in Salt Lake. It is a nonstop flight and I will arrive around 3:00 local time. So, there you have it. Looks like Santa Claus came a little bit early this year right?

So that was the BIG news of the week, not really anything bigger than that haha. But as for Christmas, I don't really have an exact time for the call. It will come. Just stay by your phones. No time limit, President Winn just said that it should not distract us from our service. If I were to guess I would say it would come in the morning between 10-12 here in Utah which would be 9-11 in California. But like I said, just stay by the phones.

Peace Gardens, one of several theme areas built for 2002 SLC Olympics

This is in Peace Gardens—one of several theme areas built for the 2002 SLC Olympics

As for the week, it’s been pretty good. It's been raining/snowing off and on all week. On Saturday we had our Christmas Devotional for the whole mission, and it was great. Elder Hinckley from the 70 came and spoke to us. He spoke to us about 10 "gifts" we will be able to take home from our mission that will help us for the rest of our lives. Apparently, he was the Salt Lake mission president from 2001 to 2004, which is pretty cool. There were also a number of Christmas Musical numbers. An Elder and a Sister Missionary sang “O Holy Night”, with another sister on the piano and one playing the violin as well. REALLY good. Made me miss [Bishop] Nate Aina's annual solo, even if he didn't do it this year (Why the heck not?). After the Devotional we went and did some service at a little rec center where they were having a toy drive, and we helped families get some clothes and toys that had all been donated.  It was a really good experience.

IMG_0064After service, we had Everds's baptism. He is so great. Elder Gomez baptized him and the program went pretty well, except for the part where I had to direct the music (still don't understand what I'm doing really).  Everds looked very happy. He received the Holy Ghost in church on Sunday, Elder Gomez confirmed him as well, and he has made a few friends in the branch, so I have no doubt that he will stay solid. He's the best.

The rest of the week, was pretty normal. Waking up, studying, and preaching the Gospel until it's time to go to bed. Then I get to wake up and do it all over again. It might sound tiring, and at times it is, but there is nothing else I would rather be doing with my life right now, especially at this time of Christmas. There's a reason we celebrate the birth of our savior during this Holiday Season. He was our Savior. He died and suffered so much pain for us that he bled from every pore. Only he could take upon himself all the sins of the world, he was perfect and was the Son of God. And it's only through this eternal sacrifice that we can return to live with our Heavenly Father again someday with our families. I am so grateful to give something back to our Savior, because He has given so much to us. I am eternally grateful for His sacrifice and for everything He did for us. And I know He lives today, He loves us, and wants the best for us as well. I am happy that I get to help people come unto Him each and everyday.

I love you and miss you all.

My next e-mail will be from MEXICO CITY. I have loved my time here in Salt Lake and I have learned so much here, and I'm excited for the next step of my journey. Wait to write me until I have my address.

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)
Merry Christmas!!
Elder Peacock

Monday, December 20, 2010

Phonecall from Elder Burbidge

Wednesday morning I got a call from an unknown caller in the 801 area code…

Could it be?


A call from my missionary telling me he has his Visa…?


Next best thing, though.

Elder Burbidge and his wife are serving as a senior missionary couple in the Salt Lake Mission and as you can see from Justin’s letters, they clothe and feed the missionaries as necessary.

He called me to tell me how wonderful my son is.  Always time in my day to hear about that!

He said that since Elder Coulston has been transferred, Justin will be “the guy” for the little Spanish branch they serve in…he’ll make sure the Sacrament Meeting speakers are set and do translations, etc. etc.  He said he thought Justin is a little nervous about this new responsibility but Elder Burbidge knows he is totally ready for it and will do great.

When I said that Justin is afraid his language is not progressing as quickly as he’d hoped and that he is really stymied by the rolling R’s which apparently he is genetically incapable of, Elder Burbidge pooh-poohed the whole thing.  He said Justin has the language down and that he is too tough on himself.  He also said that he works hard and is very generous.  Music to a mother’s ears. 

Now David Burbidge is my new best friend too!

Transfer Day #2

[Email dated 12/15/10]

Hello family and friends!!

As usual thanks Mom and Dad for the emails. Great to hear how everything is going. Also glad to hear that you got the Christmas card. Make sure you keep that because I gave all of mine away. They are classic!! Everyone here at the branch loves them, and Elder Burbidge was laughing like a little girl when we showed him haha. And Mom you guessed it...the sweaters are courtesy of DI, $5 each, I mean c'mon where else would I get a sweater like that? I definitely didn’t bring one haha. But yeah, glad to hear you liked the cards.

IMG_0052Glad to hear that Elder Burbidge was able to get a hold of you. He took all the Spanish missionaries out for breakfast today before transfers and he asked for all of our moms’ numbers so he could call them. I'm glad he thinks so highly of me. He is a super nice, humble guy. The best. Speaking of transfers, they were today, and as it sounds you already know that I am staying. Elder Gomez is also staying and Elder Coulston left. I'm definitely going to miss him, we got along great and he's a great missionary.  So we got a new senior companion. His name is Elder Flaquer and he is from.... Spain also!!! haha. He has been out about 8 months and is from Barcelona. So, I will be speaking pretty good Spain Spanish at least haha. As far as the Visas go, there is a lot happening. About half of the 20 Visa Waiters that came in with me signed with the Consulate on Monday and they will actually leave tomorrow...So...I'm thinking it has to be pretty soon for the other half of us right?? But we will just have to wait and see. I'm thinking that it can’t be too much longer but who knows.


{No Tie Picture: When we met with our new zones we all gave up the tie we were wearing to pledge to be exactly obedient in the month of January. Kind of a title of liberty kind of thing...the zone leaders held up big poles with ties on them...pretty intense.}

IMG_0055Ok, now for the work. We have had to drop a lot of people the last week. Just not willing to progress or make time for what we teach. But, we continue to work with Everds from El Salvador. He is super solid and we have a very solid friendship with him. He will be getting baptized this weekend, so we are very excited about that. There is no doubt that he was prepared by the Lord. We knocked on his door about two weeks ago, and he invited us in right away and he told us he has always wanted to go to church but was a little afraid because he didn’t know how it would be. We told him that's why we're here. To teach him about things like church, and help him know that what we teach is true for himself. He is very willing to do things like read and pray and we have no trouble with him keeping commitments. His faith is increasing daily and we are very excited for him.

Also, something else exciting is that Vincent is on date to be baptized. He is the 11 year old boy who's grandmother Elder Gomez and I contacted in the front yard a few weeks ago. She was the one whose son had been killed (Vincent's father). The English Elders have been teaching him and told me the other day that he is on date for baptism. Very Exciting. Another person that the Lord prepared for us and was ready to hear and accept the true Gospel of Jesus Christ. 

Weather wise, this week has been pretty warm to tell you the truth (So don’t worry about the cold, parents). I have been perfectly fine walking around in just my suit. We've had the occasional rain as well. It's been around 50 degrees (which is warm for Utah). BUT, it snowed last night, so maybe winter is back, who knows?? 

IMG_0058Funny/Weird/Gross thing for the week. We went to a member's house for lunch. He lives in the basement, and the people that live on the floor above him have this vicious, loud dog. He is always locked up on the patio. We have always seen the dog at night and this was the first time we saw him during the day. We saw that his owners NEVER clean up after him. There were PILES and PILES of poop on the patio where he is always locked up. No wonder he's such an angry dog, he has to live in his own filth haha (see pictures).

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That’s about it for the week. Thank you everyone for all of your love, support, and prayers. I know that this is the Lord's work because his true church has been established once again on the Earth today. I feel so honored to be able to serve Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ and carry on their "Great and Marvelous Work." This Gospel changes lives. I'm glad I have the opportunity to share it with others. I love you all, and I love being a missionary. The Lord Jesus Christ did so much for us, the least I can do is give him two years of my life.


{This is Elder Gamberdella. He is another one of the Visa Waiters in my zone the last 2 transfers and he left 12/16 for the Mexico-Mexico City Northwest mission.}

Hope you have a great week and I will talk to you all very soon!!

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)

Elder Peacock

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Not Everything Changes…

We received this lovely, very spiritual card in the mail yesterday from our missionary…

christmas card

with this message:

“…I know you all think I’ve changed so much in the last 5 days months, but this is just a quick reminder that I haven’t COMPLETELY changed….”

It’s funny how amused one boy can be by fake mustaches…(and by pictures with “thumbs up”! I may have to make a collage of all the “thumbs up” pictures!)

And, if David Burbidge also loaned him that sweater, he’s no friend…just saying.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Warming Up

[Email dated 12/8/10]

Hello everyone,


I am writing today with a VERY FULL STOMACH. For lunch today after the temple, we went down to Tucano’s. Elder Morris's (an elder in our district) parents offered to pay for his whole district for Christmas. So, we went to Tucano’s, ATE A LOT and Elder Morris paid for it all.  It was sweet, and I'm full for the week. haha


This week has been pretty normal. Nothing too out of the ordinary. We have found a couple of new investigators. One is from El Salvador and he came to church with us on Sunday, and Sunday night we went with him to Temple Square. We checked out all the Christmas lights with him (amazing, highly reccomended). Then, we watched the Joseph Smith movie with him. Afterwards, we talked to him about baptism and put him on date for the 18th!!

The weather has done a bit of a 180 this week. It has been in the 40s this week and has actually felt a little bit warm at times. It even rained a couple days, instead of snowing. Most of the snow from the big snow storm is gone by now, so I'm hoping this can last until I go to Mexico. Speaking of which, still no word on the Visa. I have heard rumors that they are expecting to get them sometime in the middle of December, which would be next week, but who knows could just be a rumor. Also, Elder Juker, who you may remember from my MTC district, said that an Elder in his zone got his Visa this week. So, who knows they may be coming in. Next week is also transfers (Wednesday), so I may be getting transferred to a different area in Salt Lake. We will just have to wait and see.  [We also independently heard of another elder who was in the MTC with Justin, and who just got his Visa, so there does seem to be some activity on that front…]

Hmmm, lets see ...So the weeks are going by fast and I swear all the days are just blending together. Oh ok, we had district meeting on Monday, as usual. But this time its a little different. The District Leader interviewed the senior companions and got to know who the investigators are in the area right now...meanwhile the Junior Companions got to train. So I got to train everyone else in the district for about 20 minutes on asking good questions. So, we went through the section in Preach My Gospel and then did some role plays to practice. It went well for my first training. Luckily it was in English haha.

I also have started doing something a little bit different for Language study this week. I have been reading the Book of Mormon in Spanish out loud to help work on my pronunciation and reading. I also have been doing those exercises to work on my R's (Thanks Mom) and then I end doing some grammar practice in a workbook I got at the MTC. So, I feel like that has been helping me with my Spanish.

I will just end with my testimony that I know that this church is true. Sin duda. I know that we have a prophet today that leads and guides us, and with his guidance we can stay on the straight and narrow path that will lead us back to our Heavenly Father. If we follow his teachings, we will find happiness. Some things may look like fun or like they will make you happy, but in the end "wickedness never was happiness" (Alma 41:10). You will only find true happiness by following the commandments of God. He doesn't give us commandments to bind us down or make us feel restricted. He gives us commandments because he knows what is best for us and he knows how we will be happy in the end. We need to trust Him and His teachings and commandments and I can testify that if we do that we will find more happiness and receive more blessings than we can even imagine.
I love being a missionary, and I know this Gospel is true.

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)
Con Amor,
Elder Peacock

Muy Guay

[Email dated 12/2/10…sorry a little slow to get these posted!!!]

Hello everybody,

Sorry the email is later this week. On Monday the AP's (Assistant to the President) decided to move P-Day to Thursday this week because there were leadership meetings for a lot of the missionaries on Tuesday and Wednesday. So that is why you didn't get an email yesterday, but don't worry everything is fine here in Salt Lake. [Gee, was it the frantic emails I sent when his email didn’t arrive by 5 pm on Wednesday, then hurriedly turning on the news to see if there had been a natural disaster in Salt Lake that I didn’t know about…?  I know he’s fine, but I did have just that little gnawing fear when I didn’t hear from him.]

So this week was a good one. We had Thanksgiving on Thursday. We played sports in the Stake Center in the morning as a zone. It started off with football, then we moved to volleyball and then later we played dodgeball, so it after Thanksgiving Dinnerwas a good morning of sports with the zone. Then we did our shopping and wrote some letters and then President Winn picked us up for dinner. We ate at the mission home with about 8 other missionaries, along with some of the Winn family. It was very good. Turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, scalloped potatoes, stuffing, cinnamon rolls and all the other usual stuff. Elder Gomez enjoyed his first Thanksgiving, he said it was "muy guay" or cool (pronounced "why"). Also we found out that President Winn is a Laker fan, which made him instantly like 100x cooler than he already is ahha.

Yamel & Brittany with family at baptismAs we had planned, we had 3 baptisms on Saturday. In the morning we baptized Yamel and Brittany into the English ward. I got to perform my first baptism!! I baptized Brittany who is 10 years old and is a very sweet, humble little girl. The whole program was in English though, so I still have yet to do a baptism in Spanish but it was definitely a great experience. And at night at 7:00 we baptized Jesus R, who is a hilarious 11-year old kid, frankly a giant for his age. He looks very out of place in Primary haha. Elder Gomez baptized him, so he got to do his first baptism as well. I gave a short little talk at the baptism (Spanish) about the Holy Ghost, and it weJesus Ramirez bapismnt great. Based on that alone, I can tell that my Spanish is definitely improving, even if it doesn't seem like it a lot of the time. But yeah, it was a great Saturday.

On Sunday, they were all confirmed and received the gift of the Holy Ghost in Sacrament meeting. I confirmed Brittany in English and Elder Coulston confirmed Yamel in English and Elder Gomez confirmed Jesus in Spanish. Remembering my 1st confirmation, doing it in English is a lot easier haha.

On Sunday, it also snowed ALL day. No joke. When we left the house to make some visits before church, at 8:00 am, it was snowing, and it was still snowing when we went to bed. All in all, we got about a foot of snow I would say. It's still on the ground and its definitely not too much fun to walk around in haha.

The last two days, Elder Coulston has had leadership meetings all morning until dinner, so its just been me and Elder Gomez working in the area. We've been having a lot of fun haha. We have a fun time communicating to each other since I don't know Spanish to well yet and he doesn't know English too well yet. We've been trying to find new people and we've been doing a lot of contacting because we need some new people to teach, because our teaching pool is getting pretty low again.

I had a neat experience contacting the other day that I would like to share. We were walking around at around 11:30 in the morning trying to contact some people in the street. Elder Gomez and I came across a lady shoveling snow in her front yard. Naturally, we offered to help, but she said she was OK. We just got to know her and asked her where she was from and stuff like that. We started to talk to her a little bit about what we do as missionaries, and she told us she has her religion and she's not interested. We talked to her for a little bit more and gave her a Christmas DVD called Joy to the World and invited her to watch it with her family. She accepted the DVD and thanked us but again told us she wasn’t interested and that she has her religion and she's not going to change. Ok, we said. Before we left, I remembered that our leaders have told us over and over again to ask for referrals from everyone. So before we walked away, I asked her if she knows anyone that, especially in the Christmas season, would be interested in learning a little bit more about Jesus Christ. She looked at me and broke down in tears. She told me her grandson needs Jesus Christ in his life. 3 Years ago on Nov 27, his father (her son) was killed and around Christmas her grandson, just feels alone and doesn't know what to do. She wants him to learn about Jesus Christ to help him out. I testified to her that Jesus Christ can help her grandson out. He has experienced everything that we have. He died for our sins and he knows each and every one of us perfectly. Through Jesus Christ and his gospel, her grandson can be relieved of that pain in his life and he can know that he will see his father again after this life, I know it without a doubt. I felt the spirit so strongly and she did too. What a great blessing it is to know about Jesus Christ and everything he has done for us, and to be able to share that with other people like her grandson who really need the gospel in their lives right now. 

I know that this gospel is true, or else I definitely wouldn't be walking around in the freezing cold with snow everywhere haha. The only reason I would ever do that is because I know that it is true and I want to help people receive those blessings that are waiting for them in the Gospel and through Jesus Christ.

I love being a missionary, and have a great week!!!
And this is my joy (alma 29:9)
Elder Peacock

Monday, November 29, 2010

Elder Morris from South Africa

[This is a recent email from Elder Mitchel Morris, one of Justin’s best friends, currently serving in South Africa.  I asked his mom if I could share it here because I loved how he outlined his day.  Elder Morris is one of my favorite people in the world.  He is unfailingly positive.]

Hello to all!  66496_1300864700740_1804121769_576932_903460_n

First, apologies for not writing the last couple weeks. Mission life has been crazy and I haven't had the time to email as much as before. Lots to get done in so short a time! November is already over practically. Way too fast!

Well I thought on request by my dad I would give you a run down of what a day is like for me:

630 - I wake up to an alarm with a frown on my face because it feels as though I just went to sleep haha (the sun rises at 445 here if you can believe that haha)

630 to 800 - I prepare for the day: bathe, eat, try to exercise when I finally feel awake haha (When I do finally wake up, I have a smile on my face because I get to do missionary work all day!)

800 - I begin my personal studies. I study from Preach My Gospel, the Book of Mormon, the Bible, the words of the living prophets, etc. (Personally I love this part of the day. I am taught from on high by the Holy Ghost and I learn so much. My testimony grows as I study the Gospel and how best to teach others what our Savior taught)

900 - I begin studies with my companion. We share what we learn and we read from the different resources given to us as missionaries.

1000 - We complete our studies and prepare to leave for the day.

1030ish - We are out the door until 900pm (except for an hour around 12 to 2ish for lunch). We go to people's home and teach them different things, invite them to be baptized, answer questions they have from reading the scriptures. We try to schedule appointments, but if not, we stop by and hope they are home. If we don't have someone to see, we go looking for those to teach. We visit members of the Church and see if they know of people who need the Gospel, we go knocking on door, we contact people in the streets. Most success is found as we are given names of people to visit and teach.

900pm - We come home and look at the day and plan for the next day. I have just enough time to eat something and write in my journal, visit with the other 2 missionaries we live with, then go to sleep at 1030pm.

Picture 001

I am glad I was warned this is missionary WORK haha. I absolutely love it. I can not describe in writing the feelings I have when I see people light up because of the unique message we share. Our Father in Heaven has again reached out to His children just like he has throughout Biblical times through prophets. The Book of Mormon is the way to know for yourself that the message of the Restoration (bringing back) of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is true. Please don't ask anyone if it is true except for your Heavenly Father. The only way to know is to Read and Pray. It is impossible to deny the message and say it is false if you have done these things, sincerely, or with a strong desire. If it seems impossible for this message to be true, just ask your Father in Heaven. He knows it isn't.

I have truly seen lives change for the better. If your life is great, I promise you it can be better. This message is for everyone. It builds upon our existing faith. I know our Father in Heaven loves us. I know His son, Jesus Christ loves us. This is not a message from a Church we go out and share. It is a message straight from Heavenly Father. I love this gospel and I love being apart of this Great and Marvelous work!

Thank you for your love and support!

Love you all soooo much!

-Elder Morris

[Additional note:  Missionaries work 6 days and have 1 personal day or “P” day when they can take care of mundane tasks like grocery shopping, laundry, emails home:), etc. and can play sports (i.e., I’m sure the last picture was most likely taken on Mitchel’s P-day). They are always a missionary though, and must stay with their companion, stay within mission boundaries, and follow all other mission rules meant to keep them safe and focused.]

Wednesday, November 24, 2010


Hello everyone,

     IMG_1047  So first off, Family, thank you so much for the Thanksgiving package. It was the best. Lots of food,  pictures, AND a Christmas tree haha. Amazing. Funny thing too, one of the packages of instant potatoes ripped opened somehow. So, everything had a nice layer of powder on it, and smelled like mashed potatoes haha. I'm sure Bryce would of enjoyed it =]. Anyways I really loved the package (especially the ties!), it made last night very entertaining. I'll be sure to give Carlos and Marisela their Pavo Real very soon. Hopefully, the Christmas tree isn't some sort of premonition that I won't be getting my Visa until after Christmas.


Ok, so the big news of the week would be snow...and lots of it. Yesterday there was a blizzard warning in the Salt Lake Valley. A blizzard was supposed to hit around 4:00. We got out of our 4:30 appointment and....nothing. No snow yet, but the clouds were getting darker and scarier. We went to our dinner at 5, and at about 5:45 we noticed that it was snowing...A lot. It had snowed probably 3 or 4 inches just while we were inside for dinner. We luckily got a ride to our appointment at 6, and once we were done we got a message that said if you have set appointments than you should go to them but if you don't, you should go home. There was almost no visibility. We went in to the house for our 6:00 appointment, leaving footprints up to the door. When we got out around 6:45, our footprints were no where to be found. So needless to say, winter is here. We were home by 8:00 for the night as opposed to 9. Today it is pretty cold still and it was snowing very lightly all this morning. Luckily you sent me all my winter stuff and I still have Elder Burbidge's coat. (I'm using the toe warmers today and they are amazing.)

So as far as the work goes we have 3 people that are pretty solid on getting baptized this weekend. Jesus, who is 11, is planning on getting baptized this week.  His sister, Jessica, wants to learn a little bit more before she is baptized. Then there’s Yamel and her daughter. Yamel was baptized a long time ago, but her records don't exist so she will have to get rebaptized.  Her daughter has never been baptized, so she will join her mom this Saturday.  And then we have 3 others who were on date for this weekend...Yaret and her two daughters...but we have not been able to IMG_1036find them. They don't return our calls and they are never home. They seemed so excited to be baptized, they know it's true, but we just can't find them. So it's very unlikely that they will be baptized this weekend but we willl keep praying and hope for the best.
Those were pretty much the big things this week. The fact that we're having baptisms this weekend (I might be doing the actual baptism this time) and the snow hitting us is really the big news of the week.

As for our Thanksgiving plans....tomorrow will be our P-day, so we will play a little zone turkey bowl I think (probably inside the gym haha) go get our shopping done, and then I think we're planning on eating with Bishop Robinson (the guy we live with) at around 1 or 2 and then we're going to the mission home to eat AGAIN around 4. So it should be great and Mom don't worry I will be taken care of. Plus, if worse comes to worse I have my creamed corn, stuffing and mashed potatoes I can cook up =]

And then tomorrow night, since it is a holiday we have been instructed to not take away from family time with lessons, but we will be making short (less than 10 mins) by less actives, recent converts and investigators to wish them a happy Thanksgiving. So that should be fun as well.

Oh and last but certainly not least....HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD. I took a picture for you as you can see, and I know it's a little early but the snow was falling and it was just the perfect opportunity, so just imagine it was on the 27th. I hope you have a great one and Thank you for everything you do for me and for our family, and the example you have set for me.

I just want to close with my testimony that I know that this church is true. I love sharing the gospel with people, even if I'm not great at Spanish and can't roll my R's. The Lord has called me to preach the Gospel in the Spanish language and I can testify that he has qualified me for the work and will continue to qualify me for the work as long as I am faithful. Because honestly, I was not good at Spanish in high school, but I know that I am learning it so much easier now because the Lord is helping me. I need his help in this work, because there is no way I can do it alone. There are too many challenges and temptations in like to try to do it on your own. In 2nd Nephi 4:34  it says:

"O Lord, I have atrusted in thee, and I will btrust in thee forever. I will not put my ctrust in the arm of flesh; for I know that cursed is he that putteth his dtrust in the arm of flesh. Yea, cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm."

This is one of my favorite chapters in the Book of Mormon and it is so beautifully written by Nephi, and he proclaims his trust in the Lord because he realizes that there is no way he can do it alone, and if he trusts in the Lord and has faith in Him he can do anything. I can testify that that is true. Put your trust in the Lord Jesus Christ and he will help you through anything, no matter how tough it may be. He loves us, each and every one of us and He knows us personally. Trust Him. He will help you.

I love being a missionary and this is my joy (Alma 29:9)

Have a great Thanksgiving and a great week.
Love and miss you all =]
Elder Peacock

Thursday, November 18, 2010

I Found a new best friend...and his name is David Burbidge

Hello Everyone,

I will explain the headline later.

Thank you for the emails with all the updates. It sounds like this was quite the eventful week. Congratulations to Bishop Aina and Thank you Bishop Williams for everything you have done for me. Sorry to hear that Valencia won, but good to hear that both Tyler and Bryce's seasons are still alive. Also thanks for the pictures, always great to see pictures. The scar does look a lot better now Dad, Mom's not just being nice. Also, excited to see the newspaper...Congrats Tyler. 

Ok, so this week has been pretty solid. The last couple of weeks have been fairly slow due to the fact that we had to drop a lot of our investigators because, frankly, they were not interested in doing anything. So we were looking for a lot of new people to teach. You could say we were in  the process of rebuilding our teaching pool. This week we have started to solidify some of those new investigators.

First off Jesus and Jessica who are the younger siblings of Roxanna who we have been teaching. We put them on date for the 27th of this month and they both accepted. The rest of their family are inactive members and we are hoping to get their whole family reactivated and re-excited about the Church. We had a family home evening with them last night and it went great. We taught them about the Holy Ghost and they are really a great family.

We have a few more investigators that we are hoping to put on date and have a lot of potential as well so I will be sure to keep you up to date on that.


Last Friday we got to go to a pretty cool thing down at the Conference Center theater. They had a play kind of musical thing going on called Salvador del  Mundo...or Savior of the World. It was a completely Spanish production about the birth and resurrection of Christ. It was really well done and I'm sure I would of thought it was even better if I could of understood what they were saying. But we took one of our investigators to it, Nicole, and also her sister Aurora who is a member recently baptized.  I enjoyed it.

Hymnbook So you're not going to believe this when I tell you but....The three of us sang in Sacrament on Sunday. Yeah I know doesn't sound like something I would ever do. It definitely wasn't my idea ahha. It was Elder Coulston's. We didn’t sound too bad though haha. We sang “Senior Yo Te Seguire”...which would be “Lord I Would Follow Thee”.  [Justin is NOT a singer, despite my (and Maran Zyhailo’s) best efforts to make it so, or to even have him hum during Family Home Evening.  Thus, this is a REAL surprise!  I told him he’ll have no excuse now when he comes home!]

So, as for the weather, it has been getting cold. And since we are walking now it gets REALLY cold and windy at night. I was about ready to go down to Mr Mac and get a jacket and then return it or something. However, Elderseinfeld_puffy_coat Burbidge (one of the senior service missionaries in the ward) decided he would just lend me his jacket right off his back. So that's what he did, so now I will be using his jacket until my Visa comes (still no word). And he gave me two rules...don't ruin it and write your mom this week and tell her that you found a new best friend...David Burbidge....hence the headline. 

Hmmm, lets see what else happened this week. Well, we met with Carlos and  Marisela and they are solid as ever. They are going to the temple to do baptisms for the dead this weekend! haha how sweet is that? They are in love with the Church and they could not be any happier in their lives than they are right now.
Well, I think that's about it for now. I'm having a great time here in Salt Lake and I am being taken care of, especially by my new best friend. As for Thanksgiving, we don’t have any for sure plans yet, but we will most likely be invited somewhere to eat. By the way, that will be our P-day so the email will come on Thursday next week instead of Wednesday.

I will just leave you with my testimony, I know that this Church is true. And I have a testimony that anyone who has a desire to know just has to ask God (James 1:5). If you pray with faith, and really want an answer and have that real intent to act on the answer, you'll get it. Without a doubt. We have yet to come across someone who prayed with real intent and has not gotten an answer. As missionaries, we can be the greatest teachers and have all kinds of cool books and pamphlets and scriptures to convince them that it is true, but the only way anyone can know is by finding out for themselves. The only way to do that is through prayer. I can testify that God wants to hear from us and He wants to help us find the right path. He is always willing to do his part, we just have to do our part and say that prayer with faith. Moroni 10:3-5 in the Book of Mormon lays out all the things we need to do in order to know the truth of all things:

3 Behold, I would exhort you that when ye shall read these things, if it be wisdom in God that ye should read them, that ye would remember how amerciful the Lord hath been unto the children of men, from the creation of Adam even down until the time that ye shall receive these things, and bponder it in your chearts.

  4 And when ye shall receive these things, I would exhort you that ye would aask God, the Eternal Father, in the name of Christ, if these things are not btrue; and if ye shall ask with a csincere heart, with dreal intent, having efaith in Christ, he will fmanifest the gtruth of it unto you, by the power of the Holy Ghost.

  5 And by the power of the Holy Ghost ye may aknow the btruth of all things.

If you follow those things, you will get the answer to your prayers, I can promise you that. I say these things in the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.

I love being a missionary, and this is my joy.

Miss and love you all, till Thanksgiving,
Elder Peacock

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

A Conversation Between Brothers

[If Bryce catches me posting this, I could be in BIG trouble!  But, to me, it is the most endearing thing ever and I think it should be saved for posterity!]

Dear Justin,

I'm sorry I haven't written for awhile I've just been busy every weekend and every other day to an extent where writing you just seemed impossible. Finally this weekend (11/7) I was able to write because for once there was nothing to do otherwise.

Football wise everything is fine we just won our conference and are 2ND for the playoffs and expect to go far into the playoffs. And I think I have convinced mom and dad to let me take golf lessons after football season is over. so when you get back you, me, Tyler and Dad will all have to play some golf and I'll whoop all you with my awesome new and mad skills!

Guitar is going well too and I think I'm picking it up fast because the songs I have to play each week are a walk in the park and my teacher Aldo says I'm picking it up faster than most of his students. And tell me if you want me to record some things into the tape recorder so you can hear how it's coming I will but if you want to wait until you get back to hear the great improvement, that's cool too.

Other than that my days are school, homework, football, sleep and repeat but if there is anything, anything at all I can send or that you want to hear about all you have to do is ask.


Bryce your little buddy


Hey little buddy,

Thanks a bunch for the email. Glad to know that you're thinking of me. I'm hearing good things about you in football dude. Keep up the good work and work hard and DON’T take plays off. Even if practice and stuff is hard and you are exhausted, trust me you will miss football when it's all said and done, so enjoy it while you can. Good luck in playoffs!! and kick some butt.

As far as guitar goes, I'm excited to hear it. But I think I'm going to wait. I'm expecting a full on concert when I get home. It will be sweet. Plus I don't think the tape recorder will do it justice. And you will probably whoop me at golf if you take lessons. So I'll have to take a class at BYU or something when I get back. Then we'll see who will kick butt.

How's school going? Any Girls I should know about?? Haha keep up the good work my little brother and work hard. Be the best at everything you do.

I want to leave you a little challenge. I want you, by yourself, to read a chapter out of the Book of Mormon every day, and say your prayers on your knees when you wake up and when you go to bed. I want you to email me next week and tell me about it OK?? I promise you that you will see a difference in your life and that you will have the spirit more fully in everything you do. Trust me on this one little buddy.

Have a great week, and Booo Colts =] Haha
Your Bro Elder Peacock

Elder Pavo Real

[Letter dated 11.10.10]

Hello everyone,
It's been another week here in the Salt Lake City Mission. This week has had its ups and downs.

First off, Elder Coulston and I have a new companion!! His name is Elder Gomez and he is straight from Spain. He went to the MTC for two months to learn English and now he is here. This is his first time in the United States. So, he IMG_1027is learning English and I am learning Spanish. We're having fun together. Naturally, since he's from Spain, one of the first things I asked him is "So do you like Pau Gasol?"....And of course he said yes..."Ohhh Pau Gasol is my hero" hahaha. Also Elder Coulston and I told him not to get to discouraged with English because once he gets it down no girl will be able to resist him because he will be able to do an Antonio Banderas accent. We've been practicing with him all week..."I'm Puss....In Boots". He'll get it eventually haha. Oh, and for those that aren't familiar with Spanish, People in Spain speak in a different kind of Spanish. they say z's and c's like "th" so it's almost like they are talking with a lisp. So Elder Gomez is pronounced Elder Gometh.  They also talk in vosotros form, which is not used anywhere else that speaks Spanish. It's like saying "you all" in a very casual and informal way. And they also have different words for some things. So its cool to listen to him talk sometimes haha.  [The picture shows Elder Gomez and Elder Coulston with Elder Fifita in the background].

So, weather update. It was warm, like 70 degrees, last week. On Monday, the clouds came in, it got windy and cold. Monday night, it snowed. And since then, it has been pretty chilly with a light snow/rain every now and then. But don't worry, I'll be fine. Elder Coulston is going to let me borrow a coat so I don't have to buy one, because the second I buy one I will get a call saying my Visa is here. Speaking of which, still no news. Trust me it will be the headline of my email as soon as I hear anything about it though. I really don't think it will be much longer. My guess is about two weeks which would put me at the 9-week mark here in Salt Lake. But, I will just have to wait and see. And my understanding is that as soon as I get it I will leave, I don't think they would have me stay the rest of the transfer, especially since I am in a 3-some so it wouldn't mess anything up if I left.

Ok, now for the work. This week as I said before had its ups and downs. First off, the downs. Mary de la Paz, who we had on date for this weekend, MOVED. She moved about 15 minutes away into the South mission and we asked her if she wanted missionaries to visit her down there and she said that she didn't have time. It was a real bummer, because we know how much this gospel can help her out in her life. Also, Felix and Sandra seem to be going downhill. We've talked to them about separating so they can be baptized and they didn't want to do it. Also, now it seems that they are not so sure they want to get married anymore, because they have been fighting a lot lately. But at the same time they don't want to stop living together...doesn't make any sense to me. To add more fuel to the fire, Sandra answered the door the other night with some alcohol in her hand… They seemed a little bit better last night but still not great. We just have to keep working. Another thing, EVERYONE canceled on us on Sunday and didn't go to church. We had 5 or 6 people that all said they were coming and we planned to stop by to get a ride and they all canceled or weren't home.

Ok, now that I've been through all the bads, we'll talk about the goods. We have two couples--Jesus & Rocio and Carlos & Roxanna. We went by them both with Elder Dahyle last night. I can't remember if I've told you about him yet or not. He is a Senior Missionary that has been working here in Salt Lake with Latino People for 11 years.  When he meets with couples, he reads the Proclamation on the Family with them, and then asks them what God is telling them to do. He tells them that they cannot receive all the necessary blessings in their families without marriage and he promises them blessings if they get married. Then he asks for their ID's so he can start filling out the applications with them. He is bold and he is straightforward. He doesn't beat around the bush at all. And that is why he is successful and why we bring him with us. Both couples last night filled out their applications with him and we are planning and going down to the marriage office tomorrow with them to get their marriage licenses, and then we will make plans for their weddings. So that is very exciting.

So something pretty cool happened on Monday. We got to go do service at the temple and we were there from 1-4. We cleaned pretty much. We got to go to the 5th floor of the Salt Lake temple which is a huge room where they have devotionals and stuff. We also got to go look at the James E. Talmadge room, which is where he wrote Jesus the Christ, so that was a pretty neat experience.


So, I think that's all for the week. You will see that I have included some pictures. Cassandra sent me a Halloween package full of A LOT of baked goods and candy and, as you can see, some little Halloween costumes. So we took some pictures so I hope you enjoy.

I also got a Elder Pavo Real tag as you can see.


So yeah, that's about it for the week. I love and miss all of you. I love being a missionary and I love the work. We had some trials this week, but as it says in Ether 12:6, you receive no witness until after the trial of your faith. I know that as we continue to work hard, no matter what trials come our way, we will be able to work through them and in the end find success. We receive blessings when we do what the Lord has asked. He promises us blessings and He is bound when we do what he says, he will bless us. He's perfect so he's going to hold up his end of the deal. We just have to make sure that we are always holding up our end by keeping his commandments. When we do that, and strive to be like Him everyday, we will find so much more happiness and peace in our lives because the blessings will start pouring in. I know that this Gospel is true and I know that Jesus is the Christ. It is only through Him that we can be saved, and there is no other way. There is only one way to return back to him, as it says in the Bible in Ephesians 4:5 there is only one faith and one baptism. There are not multiple ways. There is only one. And I can testify to you that the only way is through the restored gospel of Jesus Christ which is found in its fullness in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

I love being a missionary and I miss and Love you all, have a great week.
And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)

Con amor,
Elder Peacock

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Transfer Day #1

Hello everyone,

So, today is transfers...and drum roll please.........I'm staying and Elder Coulston is staying as well.  However, Elder Romero left and we found out this morning that he got transferred to Windover which is in Nevada (?) or very close at least. Oh, and Elder Coulston was released as District Leader and we will be receiving a new companion straight out of the MTC. So Elder Coulston will be a trainer. I haven't met our new companion yet, he is currently with Elder Coulston and I am on exchanges with another Visa Waiter while Elder Coulston and the new missionary do meetings and orientations and what not at the mission office.

So this is how transfers all worked out this week:  on Sunday night President and Sister Winn call leaders if they are getting that's when we found out that Elder Coulston would be released.  On Tuesday morning, the zone leaders called and let people know who is going and who is staying, only to let the people leaving know that they need to pack their bags, they don't tell where they are going or who their companions are or anything like that. Then, this morning we went to the transfer building along with all the other missionaries. We all stand in the parking lot and on the count of 3 all the zone leaders for the different areas hold up posters that say which missionaries are in which zone. So, I was still in Cannon along with Elder Coulston and our new missionary. So that's how transfers all work out. Also, since Elder Coulston is not the district leader anymore, we don't get the car anymore, so we will be on foot. But it's really not that bad when you consider we cover 3 wards, or only half of a Utah. So it really is a pretty small area.

Hmm....let's see, this week we have continued to work with Felix and Sandra, who will be getting baptized this coming transfer. Not a whole lot to report there. We also meet with Carlos and Marisela about once a week just to make sure that they are still doing alright. And, wow, are they solid. They asked for Book of Mormons from us so that they could give some to their friends. We gladly gave them 3. Also, Carlos went and got a suit and showed up at church on Sunday in a suit, white shirt and tie. He was looking good. Another really amazing thing that happened is something that he told us while we were teaching him the other day. He told us (Elder Coulston explained this to me afterwards since I didn't really understand what he was talking about) that if his life flashes before his eyes before he dies like a lot of people say it does, he told us that we would definitely be a big part of his life and we would be in that flashback for him. They are so strong and I am so excited for them to work towards that day when they can be sealed together in the temple for eternity. I wish I could come back to Salt Lake for their sealing in a year, but that will probably be a bit outside of my mission in Mexico City (speaking of which, still no news on the Visa).

We also have been working with 2 very promising investigators. Carlos and his non-active member girlfriend Roxanna is very receptive and attended church on Sunday. He is very open and willing to learn, and you can tell he wants to be closer to God. We had a family night with them last night and it went great. We had it at a members home and we learned about the Gospel of Jesus Christ with a very interactive lesson, it was great. We are also working with a woman named Mary de la Paz which i think I mentioned last week. She also attended church on Sunday and continues to work towards her date on the 13th. We also set our goal this week for the month of November...5 baptisms. So we will continue to do all we can and with the Lord's help I know we can accomplish that goal.

Ok, so Halloween was on Sunday/Saturday here in Utah. On Saturday we weren't allowed to go out just because everyone would be trick or treating and it would not be very effective. So, we went to the mission home and had dinner around 5. President Winn was BBQing up some hot dogs and hamburgers and we had a fun time hanging out with some other missionaries. After dinner, our zone and I think one or two other zones went and did a 7:00 session at the temple, which was great as always. I love going to the temple, its so peaceful.

Hmm, other than that it was a pretty normal, standard week, not entirely sure what else to talk about. The weather has gotten warmer and it's been around 60 all week, but I'm expecting it to start getting colder pretty quickly here....OH and I almost forgot I received some new name tags this week.  Two of them say on them "Elder Pavo Real" AKA my name is Spanish, which I think is very cool. Haha you will be seeing pictures next week (Sorry, I don't have my camera with me today.).

So yeah, I will just close with my testimony that I know this church is true. Esta obra es la obra de Dios. Nuestro Padre Celestial nos ama y El ha restaurado su iglesia en el mundo hoy por medio Jose Smith. Tenemos evidencia de la restauracion porque tenemos El Libro de Mormon. Yo se que esta iglesia es verdadera y Tomas S Monson es el profeta viviente por medio el Libro de Mormon. Lo he leido y yo puedo testificarles que es la palabra de Dios. He recibido un respuesta por medio el Espiritu Santo.

Translation : This work is the work of God. Our Heavenly Father loves us and he has restored his church in the world today through Joseph Smith. We have evidence of the restoration because we have the Book of Mormon. I know that this church is true and Thomas S Monson is the living prophet through the book of mormon. I have read it and I can testify to you that it is the word of God. I have recieved an answer through the Holy Ghost (see Moroni 10 :3-5, last two paragraphs of Intro to the BOM).

I know that everyone can know these things are true by reading the Book of Mormon and asking God through prayer if it is true. That's all we do as missionaries is show people how they can find out for themselves, it's up to them to do it.

I love you all and I miss you, but I love being a missionary and there is nowhere else I would rather be.

Have a great week.
And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)
Elder Peacock

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Umm. I Packed for Mexico City. It Doesn’t Snow in Mexico City.

Hey everyone,


Well I've officially been out over 3 months now and one week until I've been here in Salt Lake for a full transfer (Transfers are next Wednesday).

Ok so first off, I did get the cake. We just had to go pick it up at the Mission office, but thanks a bunch Grandma and Grandpa!! We will definitely be enjoying it over the next week or so.  [Grandpa Bruce and Grandma Joyce are heading south for the winter (although they stayed a week too late by the looks of the pictures below) so Grandpa baked Justin and his companions a cake before they took off and was going to secretly leave it on his doorstep.  However, when he got to the address, it was a chapel so it stymied him a little bit.  Fortunately he located some kindly sisters who promised to get it to Justin.  Looks like they kept their word instead of grabbing a fork!]

Second, Dad, I don't think you're allowed to send stuff straight to my house that I live at, so sorry about that. Also, “always” is “siempre” in Spanish, just so you know mom. Also thanks so much for all of the pictures Mom, and congrats for beating Hart, Tyler...In their faces (*cough* Cassandra *cough* Elliot *cough* Sister Sarmiento)


So as for the week, I'll start with weather. It's getting a little cold here. It started raining and getting pretty windy over the weekend, and itIMG_0990 also was pretty rainy yesterday as well. The mountains were getting a lot of snow. And then this morning we woke up, and found about an inch of snow on the ground. Elder Romero was super excited and went out and started throwing snowballs (its his first time ever seeing snow). In a couple of weeks Elder Coulston and I have agreed that he won't think it's that cool anymore.


Ok so now to everything else....
So, Felix and Sandra ran into a little bit of trouble.  They were not able to obtain a wedding license. So, they are not able to be baptized while they are unmarried and living together. We have been talking to them this week about waiting to live together until they are married, and we have committed them to pray about it so we'll probably see how their prayers went tonight. I know it might be hard for them to separate but if they make the sacrifice just for a little bit the blessings will come from following the example of Jesus Christ and being baptized. That's what we've been trying to help them to understand this week, so hopefully it will all work out.

We also continue to work with two other couples, trying to help them to get married. Carlos and Roxanna, who have a 1 year old son and Roxanna is actually an inactive member. Also, Jesus and Rocio who have a few kids and Rocio is actually a daughter of a fairly recent convert. We are teaching them about the importance of families and will hopefully be helping them take the important step of marriage this week sometime.  [I hope they covered marriage and family counseling in the MTC…]

Hmmm...then we have a few other investigators we are working on and hoping they will progress more this week, but those are our most serious ones at the moment.


This past week we had stake conference and a mission tour which were both awesome. Stake conference was a regional stake conference which was broadcast out of the conference center to all of Salt Lake (70 something stakes). Elder David Evans of the Seventy spoke and also President Uchtdorf and the Primary General President. It was really good, and a lot of it was about missionary work which is pretty cool. The Spanish branch had a good turnout, they were overflowing the Relief Society Room where the Spanish translation was being broadcast. A lot of the talks were encouraging people to serve missions and start preparing for missions, and Elder Coulston was sitting next to Carlos Sanchez (our recent convert) and during the talks Carlos asked Elder Couslton if he and his wife could serve a mission someday....his family is great. We continue to see them at every church activity/meeting big or small. They are solid members.

We also had the mission tour yesterday. Elder David Evans (the same one that spoke on Sunday) of the Seventy was there again. It was great, he is a spiritual giant. We got there around 10:00, and he talked to us and trained us on stuff until about 4:30, with an hour for lunch in between. I know what you're what a long meeting, how terrible. But it really was great, I enjoyed every minute of it. We talked about the Doctrine of Christ (see 2nd Nephi 31), how to be bold and invite everyone to be baptized like the great missionaries of the scriptures (Paul, Alma, Amulek etc), how to get referrals more effectively, how to work with members better, the importance of the spirit and just how to be a better all around missionary. Really loved it and I learned a lot.


Hmmm....I can't think of much else to say. We continue to work hard and teach everyday. We're doing the Lord's work and you can see his hand in it everyday. Last night for example, we stopped by a lady named Mary de la Paz because she had called us earlier. Apparently she had been committed to baptism sometime ago but she didn’t because she got a job that took most of her time. Elder Coulston and I knocked on the door (Elder Romero was working with a member at the time), and we were planning on just setting up an appointment for the next day because it was already like 8:50 so we didn't really have time for a lesson. We set up an appointment for Thursday, and then we decided to pray with her. Since it was cold she invited us in. I said the prayer and while I was praying Elder Coulston got the prompting to commit her right then and there to baptism. after the prayer, he did it. The Spirit was so strong as he said the words and then gave here the commitment..."Seguira el ejemplo de Jesucristo al ser bautizada por alguien que posee la autoridad de Dios?" She started to cry. and She said that that is what she wants. She wants those blessings and she wants to make that decision in her life. We put her on date for the 13th of November. It just goes to show you how important it is to listen to the Spirit. We went in with the plan to get another appointment but the Spirit told us to do something different. We followed the prompting and now a daughter of God is preparing to be baptized.

I know this Gospel is true and that this is the work of God, he guides us and protects us as long as we listen to him and do the things he has asked us. Like it says over and over and over again in the Book of Mormon, if you keep the commandments of the Lord you will prosper in the land. The same goes for missionary work, as we are obedient and listen to the Spirit and work hard we see success. Because really, there is no way we could do this work with out Him. I love being a missionary and I thank everyone for the love and support.

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)
Until next week
Elder Peacock 

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

1st Confirmation….en Espanol

Hey everyone,

Another week has gone by here in Salt Lake and the work continues to be great. This past weekend Carlos and Marisela were baptized. Just a little reminder in case you forgot, they were married on the first and we met them a week before that. When we met them they wanted nothing to do with getting married or baptized, but after just a week, the spirit seemed to soften their hearts and they were married. Two days after their wedding, we were able to put them both on date for the 16th of October. And then, after finishing teaching them the lessons and building their testimonies some more, they were baptized on Saturday.  They really are great people and the Spanish Branch here has already grown to love them as well. 

IMG_0970 Baptism of Carlos and Marisela (the girl smiling is Karen, the other is Rosita and the other lady is a grandma of the family)

So, after their baptism on Saturday, as is the norm, they were confirmed in church on Sunday. However, due to a complication in her work schedule Marisela couldn't make it to the Spanish branch at 1:00. We got the Stake President's permission to confirm her in an English ward at 11. So, on Sunday, we arrived at the 11 o'clock ward, and as I entered the chapel, one of the other Spanish Elders informed me I would be doing the confirmation. I kinda looked at him and was like "yeah okaaaay" haha thinking that there was no way I would do it, since I know very little Spanish and have only been in the mission field for 3 and a half weeks. The Elder then told me again that I would be doing it, he had asked Marisela who she wanted to do the confirmation...and she had said that she wanted me to do it. Wow was I nervous, let me tell you. I went over with my companions the things I had to say, and during the whole opening hymn in Sacrament meeting I was just thinking about what I would say. I was a little comforted in the fact that we were in an English ward, so only the people there from the Spanish branch would understand what I was saying and wouldn't be able to tell if my Spanish was bad or not. As the hymn ended, I said a little prayer, just asking Heavenly Father to help me out and put into my mind the things that I needed to say during the Confirmation, and also that I was very grateful for this opportunity. As I said my prayer, I felt comforted, knowing that I would be led by the Spirit. I went up, we placed our hands on Marisela's head, and I did it. I confirmed her a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints and confirmed upon her the gift of the Holy Ghost. The words, truthfully, just seemed to come to me and I was able to express everything I wanted to. Right after we said Amen, Elder Coulston patted me on the back and whispered "Fantastic." We then said goodbye to Marisela as she left for work, with tears in her eyes. As I returned to Sacrament meeting, I said another little prayer, this time thanking my Heavenly Father for allowing me to be a tool in his hands. Because really, I know better than to think that my Spanish is that good, Through the spirit, in that moment, the Lord was working through me. No doubt about it. 

Carlos and Marisela and their two daughters Karen and Rosita are doing great. We attended a family night with them on Monday, with two other families in the ward were there as well. They are making friends in the ward and you can just tell how happy they are. We don't just teach it because it sounds good, we teach it because it really is true...This gospel blesses Families. Because Carlos and Marisela have chosen to follow the example of Jesus Christ and align their lives with his teachings, their family is being blessed and is so much happier than they were just 4 weeks ago. Another great testimony to me about how great this Gospel is. 

Ok, so we also continue to teach Felix and Sandra. They are still solid and still on date for Friday. They will be married, and then right after they will be baptized. They both are solid in their testimonies and both have expressed to us that they know that the gospel is true, so we are very excited for them. The Lord also continues to bless us with more work. In the last week we have found two more couples that want to get married. We are working with them to hopefully get them married next week. And as I have learned, when we help people get married, they get baptized about 95% of the time. They see that what we teach about families are true, and they see the blessings in their life from marriage, and then we simply show them how they can get even more blessings in their lives and live with their families forever. That's exactly what happened with Carlos and Marisela. 


Hmm, so I think I've pretty much covered everything. I continue to love my companions and the work. We work hard and I am wiped out by 10:30 when I go to sleep, but I wouldn't have it any other way. 

IMG_0974 IMG_0975

Also I continue to be spoiled by members here, we had someone stop on the side of the road and give us double cheeseburgers and fries from McDonalds at like 4:45 while we were tracting. As a result of all the members here taking such good care of me, I'm also probably getting a little fat, but it's ok. From what I have heard I will lose it all in Mexico.

I love being a missionary and this really is my joy. 

Have a great week everyone!!

Elder Peacock

Another Great Salt Lake Week

[October 13, 2010 Letter]

Hey everyone!

Another week has passed by here in Salt Lake City and things are going great.

I'll answer some of your questions first....I am fine financially, no need to worry there. It's actually a common occurrence that people pay for our food whenever we go out to eat, its already happened probably 5 times since I have been here. Plus, I have my mission debit card which gets money on it from the mission. So I'm all good here.

And yes, for general conference and every once in a while I do gel my hair, just cause its getting a little long and spiking it a little makes it look a little shorter and a little nicer...but I got a haircut today so I wont need to do it again for that long.

As for the Visas...really don’t know anything, Elder Coulston says the mission office will call me when there is news, but with his previous visa waiters they were both there for the full transfer or 6 weeks, and they were both going to Mexico as well.IMG_0964

Anyways, thanks mom and dad for the emails, its great to hear from you and hear how things are going in the SCV. Sorry to hear that Bryce got hurt and not sorry to hear that Valencia lost. And HAPPY BIRTHDAY Tyler!! I swear I remembered, I actually got you a card today, so it will be mailed tomorrow and get there a little late, but I sent it before your birthday so that’s all that matters.

Ok, so as for the week here in the field, things are going pretty good. Carlos and Marisela continue to just amaze me at how prepared they are for the Gospel and how much their faith and love for the church has grown. On Sunday, Marisela actually had to work, but she got off work at 3, and drove as quick as she could over to church to catch the last hour (our church is 1-4). She went to Relief Society in her supermarket work clothes, and we heard afterwards that she bore her testimony at the end of the meeting and it brought a lot of the sisters to the point of tears. Then, yesterday, we went over the baptismal interview questions with them, and we actually taught them about tithing and about the word of wisdom   right there. Carlos was telling us how he felt bad because he couldn’t pay tithing because he doesn’t have a job and isn’t making any money right now. He also told us that occasionally he drinks a little bit of alcohol just every now and then, but he didn’t even hesitate and told us he would stop immediately. They didn’t even question or doubt the word of wisdom or tithing at all, which a lot of people tend to get hung up on. They really are amazing people, very faithful and humble, and things are still looking great for their baptism this Saturday.

Speaking of people being prepared for the Gospel, we got an interesting phone call sometime last week. We got a call from a guy named Felix. He told us he wanted to get married to his girlfriend and baptized into our church....We promptly were at his house in no more than 10 minutes. We decided we could help him out. The funny part is that we had contacted his girlfriend about 2 weeks ago and she seemed completely uninterested and gave us the "I don’t have time right now" speech. But now her (Sandra) and Felix want to get married and baptized. We put them on date for the 23rd as well as their wedding on the 23rd. We went to temple square with them on Monday and continue teaching them daily. I guess he had been meeting with the missionaries about a year ago and was going to get baptized, but then he moved and never got back in contact with the church. Either way....they are the definition of prepared to hear the gospel.

Umm, this week we also got dropped by 2 investigators who we had a lot of hope for. Carlos (17) and Diana (19) both prayed about the plan of salvation and they both said that they felt good about it. We stopped by their house on Sunday and tried to get them to church and they had a soccer game but said they would try to make it to the last hour. We got a text from them at church saying they aren’t interested in changing religions...hmm. We suspect the parents were involved but we don’t know. We haven’t been able to find them or contact them since. It's very disappointing when you can tell someone knows its true, but they don’t act on that faith and accept the gospel of Jesus Christ.


Hmmm lets see, everything continues to be good here. We run in the mornings a lot, and Elder Coulston, Elder Romero and I all get along great. Both of my companions enjoyed the Rice Krispies you sent as did I...I think I would venture to say that they are the best so far. By the way who makes those? and what started the whole rice krispies phase?? It's alright with me they’re delicious. Let's see we have zone conference tomorrow, and a baptism this weekend!! This will be my first one where I have seen the investigator progress the whole way...from the first visit to that's exciting.

I know that this church is true and that Jesus Christ is our savior and redeemer. I know that only through him can we return to live with Heavenly Father again and live with our families forever. I also know that it is not enough to just say you have faith in Jesus Christ, you have to act on that faith and follow the example of Jesus Christ by repenting and being baptized by water and  the Holy Ghost for the remission of sins by someone who holds the restored priesthood of God. After we do those things, the process isn't over, it is just beginning, we have to continue to repent and strive to build our testimony and become like Jesus Christ each and every day, or in other words, endure to the end. If we can do all those things, which make up the Gospel of Jesus Christ we can have eternal life, I know that this is true and it is something that all of us should be striving for each and every day.

I love being a missionary, and I love and miss you all.

Have a great week,

Elder Peacock