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. 

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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

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

General Conference

Hey everyone!

This past week has been awesome. It started off on Friday. Carlos and Marisela, two of our investigators got married. They have two daughters and are both from Mexico City. We have only been talking to them for about a week, but they decided to get married. So, we got their marriage liscence with them on Wednesday, and then on Friday, the Branch President married them. It was simple, but very nice at the same time. Lots of people from the branch came and helped out with the food, decorations, set up etc. It was a good turn out.

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Saturday was conferencElder peacock 006e!! We arrived at Temple Square at 8 in the morning. Elder Coulston, Elder Romero and I arrived there with only tickets for the Priesthood session, but you would be amazed how easy it is to find tickets. We simply stood on the corner, and asked people as they walked by. And I know what you're thinking...there's no way we would be able to get our seats in the same area. It turns out, that there is a section roped off just for missionaries. As long as you have a ticket to get in the door, you can sit in this section. And it just so happens that this section is in Plaza 1, which is in the very front!! all the way to the right. We got to sit right where all the apostles and the first presidency (usually) enters and exits. We were able to find tickets for every session, so I sat probably 3 or 4 rows from the front row and all the way on the right side all weekend!! I even got to shake some apElder peacock 023ostles hands!! Elder Perry, Nelson, and Christofferson all shook my hand!!! I even got a picture with Elder Perry. But, it was amazing to be in the conference center both days and for all the sessions. I loved all the talks. I took notes the whole time. And yes, the MTC choir was even good too. I actually thought they were really good [Note to the Adairs…I have no idea what he means here by “even” and “actually”… LOL] and I recognized a lot of the Elders from my zone and also a few from BYU, I didn't see Elliot though. But yeah, I loved conference weekend, it really was amazing.   

 Elder peacock 021Elder peacock 018Elder peacock 028 

Ok, so on Monday we did a lot of contacting and door knocking during the day, and at night we went down to Temple Square with Carlos and Marisela and their two daughters. We went through the North Visitor's Center with them and watched the videos about God's plan for families. We then watched the Joseph Smith movie. They used translators, and I didn't because I like to know what's going on. After the Joseph Smith movie, we planned to commit them to baptism. Elder Coulston wanted me to do it. So, I did it. My Spanish is definitely still far from Elder peacock 007perfect, but in that moment, as I was talking about Jesus Christ, prophets and priesthood which eventually led into baptism, I felt the Spirit working through me. The words that I needed to say just came to me and everything that I said just seemed to come out right, in the right conjugation and everything. It was amazing. The Spirit is an amazing thing and there is no doubt that it helped me say the right things as I invited them to be baptized. They accepted and we are now working on getting them prepared to be baptized on the 16th of October. In just a week and a half, they have gotten married and now are committed to baptism. It's amazing when you can find people that the Lord has prepared for you like Carlos and Marisela are.

Yesterday was the most physically demanding day I have had in the field so far. We lent are car to another companionship for most of the afternoon, and then at night Elder Coulston (who is the only one allowed to drive it because he has a TiWi card which means he is registered with the little device in our car that records if we speed or drive crazily or if we go out of our area) took the car and went on exchanges with another companionship. So all day i was walking. Most of the time just with Elder Romero. And, a lot of the time we took a wrong turn because we are both new to the area, so we did a lot more walking than we really needed to. It took us 45 minutes to walk from one appointment to the next...But it was all good. Just part of the work.

So yeah, I am loving it here, I really am and it was awesome that I got to be hereElder peacock 025 for Conference. I know that Thomas S. Monson is a prophet of God. He leads and guides us here on this Earth, and I can testify that if we follow him, we will not only be blessed in this life, but for all Eternity. We will have Eternal Life if we follow the path that the prophet and his apostles have shown us, because they are called of God. I know this church is true and This is my joy

Love all of you and miss you,

Elder Peacock