Monday, January 31, 2011

Package Woes

We're learning on the package.  I got a call on Friday from the UPS Store that they will not deliver without a phone number.  I emailed Sister Villareal and she was sweet enough to send me phone numbers.  So, I called UPS back today with the phone number (so proud of my problem solving abilities!)  She took the phone number but said "...we were going to have a problem with the sugar."  Well, I had been told that when you send stuff, don't make it sound too good.  Since I was sending a sweater, some CDs, address labels and Valentines' candy (now look, I've gone and ruined the surprise!), I called it "yarn and sugar" for the customs form.  Apparently, Mexico doesn't like people sending "anything consumable".  AND, I get to pay AGAIN to have it shipped back.  I asked her $109 to get half way and then $109 to get back to me and still he doesn't get it?   Maybe they can keep it.  She said she didn’t know how much it would be to send it back. 

"Wow.  Is there a list posted somewhere of things I shouldn't send?"  She told me they also don't like things from China:  "Nothing consumable, nothing from China".  Hmmm.  Kinda random.  I'll try to work with it.  Not really convinced she's an expert so far.  She also told me that she tries never to send anything to Mexico which is kind of weird since she works in a shipping place.  And, as it turns out, the person I want to send stuff to is IN Mexico.  It limits my options.

Update:  Guess what?  Apparently, the sweater was made in China. (Yes, they had to open the package to determine that).   It will not go to Mexico.   However, UPS will happily mail it back to me for $71.   Let’s see, that’s:




Candy & Card-$17

Postage to date-$109

For a GRAND TOTAL = $163

+$71 to get the whole thing back where it started!

I think Justin will have to find a sweater in Mexico, eat Mexican candy, handwrite his return address, and sing to himself.  Happy Birthday to an International UPS worker-- hope he wears XL and likes Conversation Hearts.  I’m sure he needs it more than Justin does (can we write it off as a charitable donation?)  I know.  Let’s just call it a missionary experience…maybe he’ll listen to the CD’s, which are all hymns!!

As Grandpa Bruce says:

“You never stop paying for your education!”

Tuesday, January 25, 2011


Is what it costs to send a small box of “yarn and sugar” (i.e. a sweater and Valentines candy) to Mexico via UPS.  The box was appropriately bedazzled with Virgin Mary stickers to appeal to the more reverent looters.   Cross your fingers and hope it gets there.

Monday, January 24, 2011

6 Months!

Hello everyone,

IMG_0105It´s been a pretty eventful week here in Mexico. Today we have transfers, and today is the first day of the new transfer. Elder Salazar and I are staying together for another transfer. Elder Molina is also staying in Metepec, but Elder Berezay is leaving. He got called to be the new assistant to the President. So we got a new Zone leader to go along with Elder Molina. His name is Elder Decker.  I´m still here in Metepec (if you still cant find it on a map, its next to Toluca in the estado de Mexico if that helps) living in the same house with the zone leaders. Although, sometime this week or early next week Elder Salazar and I will be moving to another apartment. We will still be in the same area, but its just so 4 Elders don’t have to live in the same small apartment.


Let´s see, this week was kind of a little different. On Wednesday night I left with Elder Berezay and Elder Juker to go to DF to finalize the papers for my visa so I dont get deported. We took various buses and even the subway to get to the mission office to spend the night. The office is in a really nice area (its the mailing address). Very rich and has palm trees everywhere. Reminds me of California a little bit.  We spent the night there, and then in the morning, about 9 Elders that just arrived recently like me and the secretary of the office went to the immigration office so we could sign some papers, take some fingerprints and get a little ID card. From the time we entered the immigration office to the time we left was about 3 hours. It reminded me of the DMV in regards to how slow everything seemed to get processed. After we finally were finished there, we went back to the office. The plan was that Elder Juker and I would just go back with Elder Berezay, but apparently Elder Berezay had to stay there to do something for his visa the next day, so Elder Juker and I got to go back on our own. Keep in mind that we both don’t know Mexico that well, let alone how to get back to our areas from the office. But it all worked out. We wrote down what buses and subways we needed to take and we got home just fine. It was great. We even took a really nice bus from DF back to Metepec that had big chairs that reclined all the way and came with complimentary cookies and soda. It was like business class in an airplane. So we got back to our areas Thursday around 5.


Friday was my 6 month mark in the mission. Sooo, as tradition calls for, I burned a tie that night (6 months burn a tie, 1 year a shirt, 18 months pants, and 2 years a suit). It was great haha. It turned into a big hard piece of charcoal (as seen in the picture below of Elder Berezay). Don’t worry Mom, we did it safely....mostly.


The rest of the week was the same as usual. Contacting, teaching, and inviting people to come unto our Savior Jesus Christ. We are working hard and I am excited for this upcoming transfer because I feel like Elder Salazar and I have the opportunity to have a lot of success this transfer. We work hard to accomplish our numbers of excellence every week that President Villarreal has set. 30 lessons, 10 new investigators, 6 investigators at church, 140 contacts and 1 baptism and confirmation. They are hard to reach for sure, but they give us something to work towards and help us work hard.

I want you all to know that I have a strong testimony that Jesus Christ is our Savior. He is our Redeemer and the only perfect person the world has ever seen. He suffered more than we can even imagine to give us all the chance to return to live with our Heavenly Father again someday. He gave us the opportunity to have Eternal life. If we follow his example and teachings we will find the happiness that all of us our looking for not only in this life, but forever. I know with all my heart that Jesus Christ is the only way we can find true happiness and I am so grateful for the opportunity I have to share His message with others.

I love you and miss you all--Have a great week!


And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)

Elder Peacock

P.S. I get dearelders every week here, the same as regular mail because it all goes to the office and the zone leaders pick it up once a week. And they chop up the eyes in the tacos  dad, so it doesn’t squirt when you bite it haha....fortunately.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Life in Mexico

Hello Everybody,

It seems like just the other day that I was sitting here writing my weekly email. Now that I found my groove, the weeks are going by faster and faster, I am beginning to see what you´re talking about dad.

My schedule is a little bit different here in Mexico than it was in Salt Lake. As with every missionary, we wake up at 630 and we get ready to go by 8. We have personal and then companionship study. We don’t have language study since half of the missionaries here already know the language, so us white boys just have to learn on the go. We are out working at 10 in the morning. On Tuesdays 051094071-01-corn-tortillas-recipeand Thursdays we have meetings with the zone as Districts. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, we get trained on something--Thursday is more interactive with practices and role plays and stuff like that. But after 10 we are working. We go by our appointments, knock doors, contact people in the street, you know the usual missionary stuff. For some appointments we have to travel pretty far and we take buses and taxis to get around. Every 3 weeks we get money for transportation, different amounts depending on the area. Here in Metepec we get 800 pesos every 3 weeks along with our monthly 1200 which is the same for everyone. Then around 2 or 3 we get fed by members. Usually consisting of meat, rice, beans and warm corn tortillas with some kind of fruit juice. I love it! I imagine that I will want to eat corn tortillas with my meals for a while after I get home from my mission. And after our meal in the afternoon, we are out working again until about 9 when we return back to the house. Eat, plan and go to bed. And yup that´s a usual day here on the mission in Mexico. On Sundays, church starts at 830 in the morning and we only go to one ward since that’s all we cover. After church,  we attend baptisms or go out working some more.

dogbiteThis week was good. Between the 4 of us we had one baptism, and next week we are planning on 3 or 4 more, hopefully. I ate some more cow eye tacos, this batch seemed to be a little bit slimier haha. I might have to stay away from them for a couple of weeks. I didn’t get sick or anything but I just wasn’t a huge fan of them. Lets see what else, A dog bit my pants. He was barking at us and then he ran behind us, so we kept walking, and then I felt him bite my pant leg and start pulling it. Luckily the owner chased him off or else I probably would’ve punted that little guy to the moon. Haha he was just a tiny little noisy dog.

We found another 11 new investigators, so our teaching pool is absolutely loaded now.  This week were really going to be focused on helping those people progress and apply the Gospel of Jesus Christ into their lives. The first step is faith. If we get them to have faith in what we teach them, they will begin to feel its true and their desire to follow Jesus Christ will grow with every act of faith they do (i.e. reading the scriptures, praying, attending church). The next step is repentance, or changing your life and your actions to put them more in harmony with the teachings of Jesus Christ. I have a strong testimony that if we put our faith in the Savior and give up the things of the world and ask him for forgiveness he will not only forgive us of our sins but he will bless us and we will find more happiness in our lives. Through the Savior all of us have the opportunity to be perfect, because he suffered for all of our sins (Moroni 10:32). After the investigators take this important step and repent they begin to see that Jesus Christ really is our Savior and they will see blessings and happiimagesCAZVXZT3ness. Once they repent, they are prepared for baptism and for the gift of the Holy Ghost. Christ taught us these things are essential to enter into the Kingdom of God (John 3:5). He also taught us the form in which we should be baptized - In the same way that he was (Mark 10:38-39) - by someone with the authority of God (John the Baptist), by immersion completely in the water (Matthew 3:13-17), and you should be baptized when you have an age of responsibility or in other words you can choose whether you want to be baptized or not. Then comes the gift of the Holy Ghost which is a gift God gives us so we can accomplish the final step in the Gospel of Jesus Christ which is to endure to the end. (2 Nephi 32:5, 2 Nephi 31:20)

By helping our investigators do these things, we help them return to our Father in Heaven and live with him again someday. I can testify that this is the Only way we can return and live in God´s presence. Because we learn in Ephesians 4:5 that there is only “Un Senor, Una Fe, y un bautismo.”  There´s only one way to return to Him, and it is through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, the same gospel that has been restored through Joseph Smith and is here on the Earth today. I love this Gospel, and I love the opportunity I have to help people accept and live by its principles.

tailorToday I went to D.F. (Distrito Federal) with Elder Berezay. He goes home in 7 weeks and wanted to order a suit for his Dad and himself. This place we went to sells these really nice suits for 700 pesos which is like less than 70 bucks. Its a good deal, so I´m thinking I’ll probably come home with a few new suits, one for Dad too, and maybe my brothers if I still like them by then ;). But the DF is a whole different place. Everything is just faster and crazier there. So many people. Out here in Metepec its a little more relaxed and calm. That being said, whenever its my time to go to DF, I´m excited. Speaking of which, Transfers are next Monday, so who knows what’s going to happen, I´ll probably find out Saturday or Sunday if I´m going to go or stay, but naturally, you´ll have to wait until Monday to find out. My guess is that I stay with Elder Salazar here in Metepec for another transfer. But who knows? Whatever happens I am excited and willing to serve wherever the Lord wants me.

As for pictures......Dangit!  One, I forgot my camera in the apartment, and two I only took one this week anyways. It is a pretty cool one though. I bought this cool warm-up suit for this soccer team called America which is a soccer team in Mexico City. They are now my new pajamas and are awesome. I got them for 20 American dollars from Elder Molina (American money is a big deal for foreigners I guess.) But I took a picture in them in the apartment, but that was it. So that picture will come next week, along with whatever I take this week. Sorry about that.

Thanks for all the love and support Family and Friends. I miss you all and love you.

And this is my joy.

Elder Peacock

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


Hello everyone,


It has been a pretty wild week here in Metepec. On Tuesday, there was an emergency transfer. Elder Juker got shipped out, and Elder Salazar came in. Elder Berezay got switched back to being companions with Elder Molina and Elder Salazar is my new companion. He´s been out for about a year and he is from Sonora Mexico. President Villarreal informed me that we would be co-mayores, or in other words were both senior companions, no junior companion. So, now us two are working in the same area as the zone leaders. The zone leaders took all the investigators we had on Tuesday, so Elder Salazar and I basically had to start from scratch. And,wow, we have seen so much success this week. We are really working well together.


We have found about 15 new investigators and we got 3 of them to church on Sunday. And we thought that between the 4 of us we weren´t going to have a baptism this week. But, on Sunday we found a guy named Jose who has been to church more than 10 times and so we taught him, and invited him to baptism, the zone leaders interviewed him after and we had his baptism at 4 in the afternoon. We also baptized 2 others who Elder Salazar and I found on Wednesday. We taught them pretty much every day and they came to church, and we were planning to baptize them the following week, but they were going out of town for along time, and then moving to Chicago afterwards, so we got special permission to baptize them on Sunday as well, even though they’ve only been to church one time. IMG_0094

So as you can see, the work is going great here. The Lord is preparing people and putting them in our path so we can help them receive all the blessings that are waiting for them. We are helping them do that through baptism. In 2 Nephi 31:17 we learn that repentance and baptism by water is the door that we need to enter. and then in verse 20 we learn that if we endure to the end we WILL have eternal life:

20 Wherefore, ye must press forward with a asteadfastness in Christ, having a perfect brightness of bhope, and a clove of God and of all men. Wherefore, if ye shall press forward, feasting upon the word of Christ, and dendure to the end, behold, thus saith the Father: Ye shall have eeternal life.

That is a promised blessing that our Heavenly Father has given us, but we cannot receive it unless we are baptized by water and by the spirit (John 3:5) I feel so privileged that I get to help out the Lord in this marvelous work, and do as much as I can to help His children return and live with Him again.

cow-headHmm...lets see, I did something else cool this week. Despite all the counsel not to do so, I ate some tacos from a taco stand on the way home one night. Elder Salazar loves Tacos de Cabeza, or in English, cow head. They have various kinds as well. Mouth, tongue, eye, cheek. I ate a cheek taco and an eye taco, they didn’t have any mouth or tongue at this particular stand, otherwise I would have tried those too.  Elder Salazar says tongue tacos are his favorite, and plus I´m in Mexico haha I have to try them. Believe it or not, they were actually REALLY good. I liked them a lot, and I look forward to try more interesting food in the future. It was great. 

Well, that´s about all I have for you now. I´m loving it here. My Spanish is progressing, and we are having success in the Lord´s work. 

I love you all and I´m thankful for all of your love and support and I love doing the Lord´s work.

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)

Elder Peacock

Letter from Mission President

Email dated January 9, 2011

Elder Peacock

Hello Peacock Family!!!!

Well we are so sorry this email is so late!!!  We have been busy with all our new missionaries.  We have received a approximately 35  missionaries in the last month.  I don't want to make any excuses though and again we do apologize.  So many of the American missionaries had problems with VISAs which you probably already know from emails from Elder Peacock.  We have had to open up so many areas and well it is exciting to see all these areas be opened and see the mission grow.  It is also great to see so many missionaries!  We know you know that Elder Peacock arrived in Mexico and well he is such a great missionary!  We have enjoyed being with him and we look forward to getting to know him even better.  You have raised a great young man!  He has a strong testimony and he reminds us of the 2000 Stripling Warriors.  He and all his companions have remembered what they have been taught by their parents and want to obey with exactness.  They have so much faith and know the Lord will lead them.  Elder Peacock will help his companion, the members, and all the sweet brothers and sisters that he will teach and baptize. We love him so much and are so grateful he is finally here!

Please know you can get in touch with us anytime.  We are here to serve you and your son.  We hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and the choicest blessings be yours this New Year!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

All our love,

Pres. & Sis. Villarreal

Mexico, Mexico City West Mission

Estoy Aquí en Mexico

[Email dated January 3, 2011…catching up!]

So, here I am. Emailing in an internet cafe in Mexico. I´m finally here and it is great. 

I got here on Monday, as you know. As we were landing, we got a nice view of the city, it just keeps going and going, no joke. It is HUGE. we got picked up from the airport by the APs [Assistants to the President] and President Villarreal. He took us over to his home, where we talked with him, before meeting his family which consists of his wife and two daughters 17 and 13 years old. He has other children, but they are older and don’t live with him. He is from San Antonio and I talked to him about Kedrick Morris [Mitchel’s brother, who just returned from his mission in San Antonio] for a little bit. The daughters both said they´d heard about me from Kedrick. We ate dinner at their house before going back to the office for the night.  All 6 of us that arrived together stayed in the office that night. 


In the morning we learned a little bit about the mission from the APs and then we had our interviews with President. He then assigned us to our areas. There are 8 zones total in the mission. 6 of them are in D.F. or Distrito Federal which is Mexico City. And two are outside of the city in Toluca and Metepec. I got assigned to Metepec, along with Elder Juker. It´s about an hour outside of the city and its in the state of Mexico. Elder Juker and I are companions with the zone leaders. So all 4 of us live in the same apartment. I am companions with Elder Berezay who is from Washington and has been out 22 months. He likes wrestling and football and he is a really cool guy. Elder Juker is companions with Elder Molina who is from Lima Peru. He has also been out 22 months. IMG_0078

So, here I am in Metepec, and it is a whole different experience. Our area is sooo much bigger. So much different here. It is definitely Mexico though, that´s for sure. There are dogs running everywhere in the streets, people selling tacos on the street, crazy drivers, pirated DVDs for sale, we take buses and taxis to get around and we live in a nice run down apartment.  It´s great. Couldn´t of asked for anything better. 

Funny story. As you know it was New Year´s Eve on Friday. And naturally, kids and adults were setting off fireworks and partying in the streets. So we heard loud bangs and music all night. When we woke up at 630 in the morning, we woke up to the sound of drunk Mexicans singing. They were still up and going strong. They didn´t go to sleep until like 915 in the morning. It was not the greatest trying to study with them as background music haha. 

IMG_0090On Sunday we had church, and a baptism. He is an awesome little 9 year old kid. That was pretty sweet. The church buildings look A LOT different here. They are way newer looking and have allll tile floors and the chapel has chairs that you have to set up instead of benches. And they have a basketball courts and soccer goals outside instead of a court inside. A little different. Also our building is 2 stories.

I´m loving it here, its a whole new experience and I´m learning so much each and every day. Here are my addresses to mail me. 

Elder Justin Peacock

Mexico Mexico City West Mission

C. Sierra de las Vertientes 310

Col. Lomas de Chapultepec

Del. Miguel Hidalgo

Mexico, D.F.    C.P. 11010

That´s the address for my mission office so that will be my address for the rest of my mission. Send packages and letters there. Not sure how much postage you will need for a regular letter. 

And here´s the address for the pouch,  you can only use ONE sheet of paper folded in thirds. NO ENVELOPES or PACKAGES. It costs the same as a regular letter.

Elder Justin Peacock

Mexico Mexico City West Mission

POB 30150

Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150


Anyways, I´m out of time, but enjoy the pictures and I love you and miss you all. Hope you all have a great week, I know I will serving the Lord here in Mexico.

Love, Elder Peacock

And this is my joy (Alma 29:9)