Tuesday, May 29, 2012

8. Just When I Thought I Knew What Was Going to Happen Next

Hey family,

It has been a WILD week. But more on that later. Thank you for the letters....is Bryce really 205 lbs?!!! When did that happen? Man, I gotta hit the gym hard here in the next 59 days or I´m gonna be in trouble.  I´m pretty bummed to hear the Lakers got rocked again in the 2nd round (Although Prez did already tell me haha)....They Lakers need to re-amp their lineup....Deron Williams!! I´m pretty sure that the winner of the Thunder-Spurs series wins it all. As for the package...I still haven’t received it...but I expect it soon no worries [sent in April for his birthday May 20th:( Fortunately, I don’t think Hostess Cupcakes EVER go bad]. I think we´re still 100% on packages making it to me right?


Ok, so as for the week. Our Heavenly Father is soo amazing. We have a tendency to forget just how powerful He is and how many miracles He can work until He blesses you with more. I am reminded of the people in the Book of Mormon that over and over and over again forget about all the blessings of the Lord that they have received. I am reminded of the apostles that thought that they would have nothing to eat because they didn´t bring bread when they had just WITNESSED Christ feeding 5000 people with very little bread at all. And most of all I am reminded of the words of Nephi to his brothers who did not believe that they could be freed from the hands of Laban if they were to enter into the city...How could you doubt??


The Lord blessed us this week. At the beginning of the week we had NOTHING going on in our area. On Tuesday we received a referral for a member´s sister that just moved into the house with them. They had been to church before. But even then, they were not too sure about baptism. We continued teaching them, and prayed continually and on Saturday we fasted for them. They were able to receive an answer and in that moment they KNEW that they needed to be baptized and that it really was the Lord´s will. But there were still obstacles there....the Mom of the family (Marina) is desperate for work and had an interview on Sunday for a job, and the oldest daughter works on Sunday. They simply decided to not go...they decided that the Lord is more important than their jobs and that the Lord will provide if they ^Love Him more that all other things. It was such an amazing experience to see the Lord work that miracle with this very special family.On Sunday the Mom and her 3 daughters were baptized and a lot of members were there in the baptismal service supporting and it was a very special day.


I felt like I had started to forget all the miracles that the Lord has worked in my life, and I started to forget that He can do all things...He reminded me of that this past week.


Now for the crazy part....We had emergency changes!!! Last night at 7 the assistants called me and told me that Elder Perez and I would be changing areas!! So, we said goodbye to the mission leader and his family as well as the Relief Society President and her family (GREAT families) and we got home to pack. I guess what happened is that the Sister Missionaries have been having problems with safety in their area right now, so President decided to have us trade areas...so now the Sisters will be working in Lomas Verdes 2 and Elder Perez and I will be in Parque Via 1 in the zone Camarones (shrimps haha) It is in the city (DF) and don´t worry Mom it is not really that dangerous. Chamapa was WAY more dangerous [GREAT…I suspect those are stories I may not want to hear until #3 son comes home safely from his mission]. So I would like to say that I will be ending here but who knows??? We have changes in 2 weeks and for all I know I could get changes again...so we will just have to wait and see. We got here to our new area this morning and are ready to start working!!


Love you and miss you all.

And this is my joy.

Elder Peacock

Tuesday, May 22, 2012


Dear Family and Friends,

Another week has passed, can you believe it? Only 9 more. My itinerary came...I will be in LAX at 950 am on the 26 of July. Hopefully you can squeeze that into your schedules?? haha. It will be fun. I forwarded the itinerary to you Mom so hopefully you got it. Good to see pictures of everyone...glad Pat got right into things...excited to see him when I get back...

Patrick Homecoming

So, the week was another hard one. We´ve been working SOO hard, but nothing seems to be happening. It´s ok though. I´m not going to get depressed or sad about it...I know that if I keep working hard like we are, the Lord will be satisfied with our work and that is the most important thing. My birthday wasn´t the best I´ve ever had [he turned 21 on May 20th]. Yesterday, we went by for investigators in the morning to go to church.  We had 3 that were committed to go with us (and we had visited them just barely the day before) and they all bailed out on us and nobody went to church.  While we were sitting there knocking on the door of one of the investigators, I got a message from President telling me that the Lakers lost game 4--that was just the icing on the cake!!! It was a little depressing, but it´s all right.  As some would say, it was character building. It´s funny because President Villarreal is a rabid Spurs fan and he knows that I am a hardcore Lakers fan so we always talk about basketball together. This past week he sent me messages about all the Laker games haha--pretty cool mission President huh?? Hopefully the Lakers can pull it out.


But on the bright side, there are some pluses to being in a richer area. Today we found a Dairy Queen. Also, a member offered to buy us some suits!!! So, I am now the proud owner of a new black suit. I think it will be the one I go home in, so that´s pretty cool.


But my companion and I are not going to get discouraged and we´re going to keep echandole ganas, as the Mexicans say. This week we´re going to keep working hard and do some extra things to help us have success. On Sunday, when I was feeling a little down, I remembered the words to what has become my favorite hymn, “Be still my soul, the Lord is on thy side”.

I love you all and miss you a ton. Happy 22 months!!!

And this is my joy

Elder Peacock

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Don’t Talk Badly About the Camel

Hello everyone,


It was great to talk to you guys yesterday. I still am not convinced that I have an accent but whatever. Well see who´s laughing when Dad tries to ask for the check at some restaurant in Cancun. haha. Also, Go Lakers. I am very excited to see you guys again...and next time we talk...there won´t be a time limit!!  Happy Mother’s Day Mom. Can´t believe that I can count on my hands how many weeks I have left now...It is going fast. Pat, send me an email when you get back!! And root for the Lakers for me buddy!!!


So today we had zone conference, I think it was what I needed. I know that the Lord is trying to teach me patience with my new area and today in the zone conference, a lot of the things that we learned, I felt were especially for me and my companion in our area right now. One of the things that I felt like were just for me was a story that President told. There were a couple of Arabs selling camels. One seller said his camel could do it all. He never gets tired, he drinks little water, he will load all the supplies onto his back himself etc. The best of the best. So naturally someone bought the camel.  The next day, the same guy that bought the camel came back to the guy that had sold him the camel and told him that the camel is terrible. All he does is eat and sleep and is basically worthless. The camel seller responded, ¨Don´t talk bad about the camel because then you will never be able to sell it.¨  President then explained that we should never talk bad about our areas because then we will not have the success that we want. So, I repent for talking bad about my area. It´s a great place, and I love it. I´m excited to keep working here.




So as you can see our apartment is pretty nice...let me know what you think. I would like to point out the GIANT window by the shower so everyone can see us shower as well as the ridiculously short showerhead....I have to duck a good foot to be able to wash my hair hahaha [Let’s just say I’m glad he doesn’t have to heat his water with an iron and a bucket.  He said he was excited to have carpet for the first time plus an oven AND a microwave]



[The next part relates to a friend of his from church who passed away when he was 15 from cancer.  I had asked him how Trevor had affected him for a project I’m putting together]

As for Trevor, here it goes. When that whole experience happened I was about 15 years old. At that time, my testimony and real understanding of the Gospel still lacked a lot...but I really believe that I began to understand a lot more the Plan that our Heavenly Father has for us. It helped me know a little bit more that the Lord understands more than we do, because I remember a lot of people saying that ¨The Lord had other plans for Trevor¨, and I began to ponder on that a lot. It helped me to understand that the Lord has all knowledge and knows all things. It helped me understand that sometimes we don´t understand why things happen...but we just need to trust in the Lord. It reminds me of Mosiah 4:9. The Lord knows all things....and we need to trust in Him always. I know that Trevor understood that and it is something that I learned from him. I saw just how much faith he had in the Savior in his times of trial and it inspired me to try to have that same amount of faith in my life...although I do not know if I will able be able to strengthen my faith that much. I will never forget it. I know that Trevor is working valiantly in the Spirit world as we speak...doing the work that the Lord needed him to do.


And this is my joy

Elder Peacock

Thursday, May 10, 2012

A Last Look at Puerta Grande

Sometimes it takes a day for the emails with the pictures to come through.  Justin sent these from his last days in Puerta Grande.








Monday, May 7, 2012

I Guess We’re Not in Puerta Grande Anymore

Hello everyone,

Thanks for all the emails. GO LAKERS. Good to hear that everyone is doing well. I am also excited for Mother´s Day...it will be the last time that I talk to you guys before LAX. Speaking of which...I think I forgot to tell you...but about a week and a half ago the secretaries in the office called me to ask me what airport I would like to fly into....!!!! I resisted the temptation to tell them Hawaii haha and told them Los Angeles...so I´m pretty sure we should be getting my itinerary pretty quick now.

Ok, so now for my week. On Tuesday I went to meet my new companion. There were about 20 new missionaries there and 20 trainers...a lot of them ex zone leaders. My companion´s name is Elder Perez. He is from San Salvador, the capital city of El Salvador. He is 20 years old and is a pretty cool kid. He arrived straight from the airport on Tuesday and still hadn´t had his welcome dinner with President and his family...so I lucked out and got to eat at President´s house along with one other trainer and the only other El Salvadorian that came with my companion. We ate Raviolis...it was great. We returned to our apartments late Tuesday night.

Wednesday we had our weekly zone meeting in the morning and then I went with an Elder who was in my area before and he kinda showed me around. Thursday we got to work. It has been pretty challenging not going to lie. On top of the fact that I am opening up the area so we had NO investigators to start with, it is just sooooooooo RICH here. I had no idea when I wrote you last time. There is a mall on like every corner and every neighborhood of houses has public security that drives around in cop cars. Nevertheless we worked HARD. Haven´t seen too much success yet but we are going to keep hitting it hard. Even our church is a lot nicer than the other wards I´ve been in. It is 2 stories and has a wood basketball court inside (the only one I´ve seen in Mexico)!! Someone said that it is the biggest church building in Mexico City. It is really nice. I would like to think that there is no correlation between the amount of money a person has and accepting the gospel, but it is looking that way.

Keep praying for us...we are going to find some miracles this week. Love you all and thanks for all of your support.

And this is my joy.

Elder Peacock

PS I do not know if that girl in the Pavo Real story got baptized...we were on interchanges so it wasnt even in my area and now its not even in the same zone...but I hope she did.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Lomas Verdes

[Email dated April 30, 2012]

Hello everybody,

It´s good to hear from everyone. Looks like it was an exciting week....that´s weird that so many people from our ward are going to the same mission [the 4th member of our ward has been called to serve in the Independence, Missouri mission]. Why don´t they send anyone my way here in Mexico?? Lame. Also, GO LAKERS. Although, it sounds like Miami´s road to the finals just got a lot easier with Derrick Rose out of the picture. Ok, also Mother´s day call is in 2 weeks. I´m assuming I will do it on Skype although I do not have the details quite yet.  It´s weird. Seems like I just talked to you guys haha. [Haha?? This is not funny!  It’s been 5 months!   I don’t think he misses us enough!!]

Ok, so I know you are all wondering what happened with the changes. Well, as we suspected, my time in Puerta Grande came to an end and I was transferred. Also, as I said before, I am no longer a zone leader and I will be training, and it will most likely be the last time I change areas before I go home. My new area is called Lomas Verdes 2 in the zone Lomas Verdes.  It is in the estado de Mexico...but still in Mexico City....kind of like Chamapa was. It is a RICH area. The houses are big and it is pretty green everywhere. I have a Cinnabon, Starbucks and McDonalds in my area, just from what I have seen so far. So I was thinking that for my birthday I’d really just like money in my account and I´ll go with my kid to some good restaurant to celebrate. I think I would like that more than a package. [um, too late…] Just money to buy food and to buy some more souvenirs before I go home. Although, I really haven´t seen any of my area yet. My house is a little apartment on the top story of what looks like a store. It has carpet in it which is a first for my houses in Mexico, but it´s a new house so we have like nothing in it still so we´re going to have to get it set up with furniture and appliances and stuff like that. The zone Lomas Verdes is a richer zone...a lot nicer looking....but I think it will be a very challenging change...getting to know the area, training, and everything else...but I am excited!! I do not know who my kid is yet however...tomorrow I will go to the offices and pick him up. Supposedly there are like 20 new missionaries coming in so there will be quite a few to choose from. [It’s like he’s going to the missionary store to pick one out!]

On some other news....the mission hit all time highs this month. We finished with 425 baptisms and 433 confirmations in the month. We had never broken 400 before....It´s amazing. Tacubaya (the zone where I just was) finished with 67 baptisms and 66 confirmations...I´m pretty sure we were the bautizona but I am not sure. It was an amazing month in the mission and we are all extremely grateful to our Heavenly Father for the great blessings He is giving us.

So, Spiritual Experience for the week. I was on exchanges last week and was working in a different area. We went and visited this family where most of them are members except for one of the daughters who is about 25 years old. We started teaching her and for one reason or another she just didn´t want to accept baptism. We finally got her to tell us why. She explained to us that she had had a baby about 1 year ago and she gave her baby to another family because she couldn´t provide for it...and she felt that that was a terrible sins in the eyes of God and she felt like she could NEVER ever receive forgiveness for it. She also explained that she had been praying for peace in regards to her baby and also for her Mom (who got baptized the week before) so she could overcome her drug addictions...but then sorrowfully told me that God had not been answering her prayers. I testified to her in that moment that God had heard her prayers. That is why he had sent us there. I testified to her that God was acting through us...and that is how she was receiving the answers to those prayers...she just hadn’t recognized it. I then testified to her about the power of the atonement and that God will forgive us for sins both big and small. She began to cry. She accepted baptismal date for the 6th of May....and in her prayer she said “thanks for sending me Elder Pavo Real to help me realize that I can be forgiven of my sins”...it was a really powerful experience.I know that Christ lives and I am happy to be one of His representatives in this great dispensation.

And this is my Joy

Elder Peacock

The Lowest of Lows & the Highest of Highs

[Email dated Monday, April 23, 2012]

Hey everyone,

Thanks for the letters. I enjoyed hearing from Grandma Joyce, so thanks for that letter.  I’m glad that I inspired you, Mom, to read the Jesus the Christ. It really is an AMAZING book. It just helps you to understand Jesus Christ so much more, it goes so in depth and gives you the big picture of His mission as Savior and Redeemer of the world. And Bryce don´t get upset that Tyler can throw as far as you already. In high school, I remember I saw my biggest growth in my strength between my junior and senior year. So just keep working it little buddy. And yes Mom, Stonefire sounds amazing!! I had completely forgotten about that place...they don´t ever use BBQ sauce here...it´s pretty hard to find. Let alone Stonefire´s bbq sauce haha. Man, can´t believe Patrick is going home...CRAZY. Send me a pic of him when you see him.


So at different times of this week we hit rock bottom, but we also hit all time record highs as the title of this email describes. We´ll start with the Low. So, remember that super cool family that we baptized last week and got them married? so they were all set to get confirmed yesterday and we were visiting them everyday and everything was going great. We were working with Mireya´s husband, and trying to help him get baptized on Sunday...but he still just wasn´t sure. We taught him on Wednesday night, and he was going to pray to know if he should get baptized. We go by on Thursday just to meet with Mireya and Claudia and Adamary (the 3 that got baptized), and everything seems fine, but then Claudia tells us she is going out of town and won´t be able to get confirmed and then Mireya tells us that her husband no longer wants to meet with us and does not want to get baptized. WHAT? She started to cry and explained to us that she wanted to get closer to God, but she didn´t want her husband to go a different direction than her and she wanted them to be united and doing the same things. We helped her out and explained to her that she could be an example to her husband and that with time he would come around, but that she needs to just keep pushing through all of the obstacles that Satan is putting in her path. She seemed alright and said she was going to keep working and get confirmed on Sunday with her daughter.

On Friday we passed by and they weren’t there so we called them and set up an appointment for Saturday. On Saturday we passed by, and they weren’t there again. We called her again. She then informed us that she would not be getting confirmed and that she was just going to get confirmed in the Catholic Church and that she would only be going to the Catholic church now with her husband. Last week they were getting married and were super happy and they loved their baptisms and now they don´t want anything?? They´re not going to get confirmed???  We were bummed. Close to crying. Elder Jensen and I walked back to the house with our heads down and in disbelief from what had just happened. We later decided that it could have only been worse if it had been raining the whole time. Lowest of lows.

But on Sunday it got better.  A lot better. We had 3 baptisms. We confirmed them after they got baptized and they were extremely happy. We married José and Laura on Friday and they got baptized with their 10 year old daughter Jacqueline. In the zone we were pumping everyone up to confirm a lot this week.

In the mission we are trying to reach 400 confirmations this month...It would be the first time anyone has done that as far as I know. After 3 weeks we had 204 in the mission....so in weeks 4 and 5 we needed to pull out almost 200. Yesterday as a mission we confirmed 120!! and our zone confirmed 30!!!! the best week a zone has had EVER. we also baptized 18. Fantastic week. Highest of highs.

On Sunday we also had interviews with President, and he informed me that I would in fact be training next transfer. So in one week, unless something changes, I will be most likely training and no longer a zone leader. He told me he wants me to leave behind a legacy, and leave him a missionary who is not just great, but is a great leader. So, I´ll let you know where I will be finishing my mission next week when I email!!

So this week we are going to keep working with Mireya and her family, hopefully they have a change of heart...include them in your prayers.

I love you all and I miss you a lot, thanks for all of your love and support.

And this is my joy

Elder Peacock