Monday, April 27, 2015

Do you not know that I have had diarrhea since Easters?

Hey there,

So this week was good but sucked as well. We both got SUPER sick and were out of commission pretty much the entire week. I'm a little bit worried about my health. I pooped blood twice last Monday and then later in the week I was throwing up and I've had diarrhea since like Tuesday. Today I think I'm finally recovering but the blood thing kinda freaked me out. It hasn't happened since Monday though so I think I'm okay. Now I'm just working on being able to eat again. Every time I eat it just kills my stomach, like probably the second worst stomach pain I've ever had (first was when I was in Andahuaylas for one day haha). I didn't eat for like two or three days last week. The mission office said they could get me diarrhea pills but that was it. I seem to be getting better now though. It might be a good idea to get an American opinion though. I don't trust Peruvian doctors. EVERY Peruvian thinks they're a doctor too.

We did have a baptism on Saturday and it was great! Pictures aren't working today so I'll send more next week.

I do have two cool experiences though: 

So in church last Sunday a lady in our ward brought a friend that was a preacher for the Seventh-Day Adventist church. He's a really nice man. Anyways, I teach gospel doctrines in our ward, and he was there. I taught about prophets. It was kind of on the fly but it ended up being okay. After the lesson this preacher dude hung out until the others left and then asked if I could "answer some questions for him." He ended up just showing me a bunch of scriptures in the bible about prophets to try to contradict me, but none of them had any relevance and they weren't even contradictory. He didn't Bible bash very well cause he fell asleep during the lesson. Anyways, he showed me those scriptures and then a couple others and made an off-handed comment about how there's lots of people living in darkness and don't know they're being deceived and some other hoopla. I just listened politely and then thanked him for sharing those with me. THEN, a guy in our ward came to me and asked for a blessing of health. He had an earache and kidney pain and had had pneumonia a week or so before. We said it was cool and shut the door to give him the blessing. The preacher stayed to observe. We explained to him how the blessing worked and then Elder Wimmer did the anointing and I gave the blessing. In the blessing I felt the spirit so strong, and I felt it tell me what I could say. I said "I bless you that your body will heal. I bless you that you will lift yourself from this chair and leave this room healed so that you can be an example to all of us in this room that Christ lives." After the blessing, he stood up, gave us a hug, and walked out with a smile on his face. After the last hour of church I asked him how he was. He told me his ear had no pain. God had healed him. It was an incredible experience. It may have been something small like an ear ache but to me it was a huge testimony builder, and I knew that I wasn't the one who had been decieved as the preacher had said.

The other one happened on Monday evening last week. There's an Elder here in Juliaca who is one of my best friends from the mission. He had been having some problems and wanted a blessing. He felt like he couldn't ask his companion because his companion didn't have the spirit with him. He said he's disobedient and he never prays, so he came to me. I gave him the blessing and listened really hard to the spirit (the details of the situation aren't important for now). After the blessing he said that I had said some things that were word-for-word out of his Patriarchal blessing. Pretty cool. It was a great spiritual experience.

That's about it for this week. Have you sent that package yet? I was thinking that maybe having some granola bars or cliff bars or something would be a good somewhat healthy snack to have while walking all day. Something a little on the healthier less greasy side would be good in addition to some treats. Whatever you feel though. 

Love you all!

Elder Tate

Monday, April 20, 2015

April 20, 2015

You are tall and fast, like a gazelle

Hello there!

This week has been a great week! Elder Wimmer and I are going crazy with the work and he gets better at Spanish every day. We've had lots of spiritual experiences this week and even seen miracles.

We've still been working with Wilmer and he is super excited for his baptism on Saturday. His sister was going to be baptized on the 2nd of May with Makenna but something happened on Saturday night in the family, some sort of problem involving her I believe, so she didn't come to church on Sunday, which means she won't have her attendances by then. Hopefully she can do it the week after.

The Surita family (Mariela and Luis and their daughter Nicol) are all progressing really well. They're going to have an interview with the Bishop this week so they can work on setting goals to get married. They want their daughter to be baptized as well, and she's also expressed to us that she wants to do it. They're the best. I will definitely keep in touch with them forever.

So if Dad or Trevor or anyone has any ideas for games that we can play in big groups for activities we'd love some ideas. We need games to play at our noche misionales.

That's about all for this week. The batteries in my recorder died so that's why I didn't send a recording this week. Love you all! Hope all is well. Sounds like a fun weekend coming up! Wish I could be there. Love you all!

Elder Tate

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Don't be a Gooey Chocolate Chip Cookie!

It's been a short week cause I had to go to Cusco so I pretty much told you everything in the recording. Basically, my new companion, Elder Wimmer, is the and I'm really happy he's here! This is the most excited I've been on my mission.

I found out yesterday that Elder Rodriguez is probably going home this week. Apparently he did something illegal in his country that he didn't clear up before the mission so it's very possible that he's going to go home. I'm not really sure what's waiting for him there. Really sad though, We'll know for sure next week though if he goes. Bummer.

Love you all! Tell brother Miles, Sis. Steinecke and sis. Nielson thanks for the letters they always send me. Hope all is well! Peace!

Elder Tate

The following is a transcript of his recording. In case you can't tell, he loves his new companion. 

April 13, 2015

     It has been a cool week this week! Last week I told you that I got a call to be a trainer. I didn’t do a lot this week because I had to go to Cusco to pick up my new companion. His name is Elder Wimmer and he is really weird. I don’t really like him very much. He is kind of obnoxious. He is from Pleasant Grove so he thinks he is really cool (sounds of the companion laughing and joking in the background). Haha!  No, he is the BOMB! He is super-duper cool and we are already doing way more things than we were doing before. It is awesome. We are going to get the work going really, really good here in Alborada. I left for Cusco Tuesday morning and got back on Thursday and we just went straight to work. We visited some people and introduced my companion to everyone and we are doing well. 

     A couple of cool stories for the week: On Saturday we went to visit our investigator, Wilmer that I have talked about before, who has a baptismal date. His brother, who we had talked to on Thursday, said, “Hey, I want you to start teaching my sister.” We said, “Great!” So we went over and we taught his sister as well as Wilmer again. We taught Lesson One to her and reviewed it with Wilmer. At the end we asked how she felt about it and she said she felt great.  My companion challenged her to be baptized and she accepted. She said that she was willing to learn more, read the Book of Mormon, and be baptized. At that moment I felt the Spirit really strong so I challenged her to prepare herself to be baptized on May 2nd, which is a week after Wilmer’s date, and she accepted. We talked about pushing Wilmer’s date back a week so that they can be baptized the same day. We are going to work really hard with her and with Wilmer, get them to church every Sunday, make sure they are reading the scriptures, and keeping their commitments. Justo (their brother) has been working with them as well and reviewing all the lessons with them. He is great to have in the lessons with us. He brings in a lot of insights and he knows them really well, so he knows how to teach them and it is great. We are really excited about that. (Justo is a member)

     When I got here my companion told me that there were ward missionaries, but I didn’t know who they were and they didn’t do anything. Apparently, they were supposed to be coming to our Noches Misionales, which I have talked about before, and help us out and bring people and plan it all. Since I have been here we have been doing it all. Sunday, this guy in our ward named Henry Casaca (he was the bishop before our current bishop) came up to me while I was playing prelude before Church and he asked if we had ever thought about working with the ward missionaries. I told him that Elder Wimmer and I had actually talked about it and that we want to get started but I didn’t know who they are.  So he took us around after the sacrament service and we talked to the ward mission leader and he knew who most of the ward missionaries were, so we had a meeting with them right then and there. We told them want we needed them to do and that we wanted help with Noche Misionale and to bring people. They were all super willing and ready to go. This made me super, super excited. We are also going to assign each of them a family to go visit and they are going to be responsible to help them get to church as well as get us references. We are going to have weekly meetings with them to coordinate missionary efforts with them and our ward mission leader. It is going to skyrocket. We are going to boost up this ward. A year ago the ward had about 120 people attending sacrament meeting.  This Sunday there were 70, so Elder Wimmer and I set a goal that by the time we are done here together, at least these two changes, we want 120 people in sacrament meeting and we feel like we are going to achieve that. So that was a really special experience. I went up after Sacrament meeting and talked to Henry (the former bishop) and thanked him for helping us out. We are ready to go. On Sunday we nearly filled up the entire week’s agenda with things we are going to do. We are already getting the work moving along and I am so excited!  

     My new companion is Elder Wimmer from Pleasant Grove, Utah and he is the bomb! He is super excited to be here, he is super happy, he is excited to work, and he just wants to get work done. He wants to learn Spanish and he just wants to help, he wants to do his job. He already speaks Spanish better than I did when I started. He will improve and he is already helping me so much. It is a blessing to have him with me. We are both just incredibly excited to get going here, so lots of really good things to come. 

     That’s about it for the week. It was kind of a short week for us. We did lots of work though as soon as we got here. Since I am the district leader I had to call the missionaries in our district to report their accomplishments, and Elder Wimmer and I had some of the highest numbers and we had only been here since Thursday. It is going to be great!! This is probably the most excited I have been on my mission. We are already super busy, so we are stoked. 

I love you all. Hope all is going well. Happy birthday Riley and Makenna!

Thursday, April 9, 2015


That'll be our motto. They won't die!

Well I'll start off with the big news. WE GOT CHANGED. I'm staying here in Alborada and my new companion IS..... (drumroll)........ I DON'T KNOW CAUSE I'M GONNA TRAIN!!! I've been called as a trainer so I'm SUPER stoked. It's kind of what I've been wanting to do my whole mission. I'll still be keeping my assignment as district leader as well. I'm absolutely stoked. since I'm training it means I'm guaranteed at least two more transfers here to train. I hope I have three more because then I would pass a year in Alborada and can enter my third sector going downhill. We're gonna go crazy on this city. When he asks me what we're gonna do I'm gonna say, just like that missionary in the district shows, "we're gonna hit the pavement my friend. Full steam ahead."

So now the personal stuff. 

This was probably the hardest week of my mission. My companion hit another phase of "I hate Elder Pearce, Alborada, the mission, etc." and decided not to talk to me, except for when I asked him a question he would just insult me or say something rude. He told me that since it was the last week of the change he didn't want to work. He said mean things about me on the phone to our pensionista, called me garbage (which is pretty vulgar in Spanish), and did other things too. I don't know what on earth I did to make him so angry and upset with me. I told him I was sorry for anything I did and he just said screw you. So I just decided that my first priority is not to help my companion, it's to help the people of Peru. I can't help him, so I just decided I was done. I just felt really bad because I don't know what I did. I don't know if there's something I need to fix or how I can apologize or make things right. It took a lot of the spirit out of conference. Luckily we were able to go to conference and be apart for a little while. I also went on exchanges twice this week so that gave us both some breathing room. I was really worried we would have another change though and just end up killing each other. I fasted during conference and included him in it. As soon as I ended I could tell he'd kind of simmered a little bit and was at least talking to me a little. We've been able to keep things pretty tranquil since then. I could also just feel the comfort of the spirit which I really needed, and I was able to focus more on the last session of conference. Luckily for him he can get away from me now cause apparently he hates me. I hope I get an American companion to train. That would be number one. Anyways, it's been a pretty exhausting week.

We didn't really do anything for Easter so that was lame. The church has an Easter video out that we've been sharing with people. On Saturday night everyone just got drunk and that was about it. The Catholics did a bunch of ceremonies and stuff but we didn't go to any, obviously.

There are TONS of less actives here, and the members don't help a whole lot. They're kind of starting to get their toes in the water. I'm hoping to change that over the next two changes. I hope my new companion is enthusiastic, and that we can also be good friends and just do work here.

Love you all, good things are ahead. I love my mission and the experiences I have that allow me to grow. 

Elder Tate

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Peruvian Rainstorm

This is a link to a short recording Tate made of a Peruvian Rainstorm.

March 30, 2015

Good morning campers! It's 10 am time to start the day!

Hey mom, so I sent a recording but I thought I'd type some stuff up too. 

First of all, what day is Easter? I don't remember haha. Here they have what's called semana santa, or holy week. Everyone eats fish which I'm not super stoked for. Other than that I don't know really what they do. Someone told me the Catholics do a little march type-thing with a cross so that'll be interesting to see.

I didn't even realize that I'm 1/3 of the way done with my mission. Pretty nuts. After I hit six months I pretty much just stopped counting. Tell Joel congrats on the mission call! I was wondering if he'd been working on papers or anything. That's super cool. Tell him to feel free to email me for any advice or good pranks to pull. When he leaves I'll have a year! Pretty crazy. 

I'm really looking forward to General Conference. They're going to be broadcasting it in the Stake Center and they'll have a room where I can watch it in English. Conference as a missionary is the coolest thing ever.

We're still working really hard with these families. Only one week left of the transfer so we'll see how changes go next week. My companion and I are doing fine. My stomach is holding up well too.

Thanks for finding the Quechua book. I'm doing my best to learn with the limited materials that I have. It's a lot harder when I'm not in an area like Andahuaylas where EVERYONE speaks Quechua. There's another language they speak in the South called Aymara. It's just as ridiculous, but more people speak Quechua so I'm gonna worry about that language first.

Love you! Talk to you later!

Elder Tate

 This is a transcript of his recording. They are long -- but it is so wonderful to hear his voice. 

Today is Monday, March 30, 2015 about 10:15 in the morning on p-day. First of all I want to give a great big ol’ birthday shout out to my big ol’ papa bear. I hope it was a good one. Mom said you probably wouldn’t be celebrating it until this week, so hopefully you do something fun like go eat a banana cream pie or a coconut cream pie, whatever it is that you like more.  Hope it’s a good one!
So it was a pretty great week this week, lots of pretty sweet things. First of all, we visited with Mariella and Luis a couple of times this week. I told you about them in my last recording. They are super awesome. They are the couple that was actually a reference. The husband is a less active and the wife isn’t a member and neither are the kids, and they have gone to church twice now, and they are just awesome.

On Wednesday we went on exchanges so my companion and another elder went and Visited Mariella and Luis.  I was sad I had to miss them.  Anyways, they went and visited and they asked Mariella if she had prayed to receive an answer about the Book of Mormon and about the things that we had taught her.  And she said, “yes.”  She ended up telling them this really cool experience that she had had. She prayed about it one night, then went to bed, and had a dream.  In her dream she saw the Savior standing by a door saying, “Come to me.”  And then later that night she had another dream that the Pope had died and then she, again, saw the Savior standing by a door saying, “Come to me.”  Pretty neat, I would say. It is kind of twisted, but I think it is pretty funny that for her answer she had a dream that the Pope died.  It’s probably kind of messed up that I think that is funny.  God works in mysterious ways . . . and we all know he has a sense of humor.  In the same lesson that day, they taught their niece and she accepted them with a plum. 

We visited them again on Saturday and it was a really awesome lesson. We talked with the niece and she told us some really cool stuff.  They had taught the 3rd lesson which is the gospel of Jesus Christ, which consists of five steps that God wants us to do while we are here on the earth so that later we can receive exaltation. These steps include faith, repentance, baptism, receiving the gift of the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end.  On Wednesday they had taught the first four. On Saturday we went and we were just going to teach them for about 30 minutes and then take them to an activity at the church. We were going to finish up with enduring to the end, which is probably my favorite part to teach of the lesson.  It talks about obedience and that we make these covenants for a life time and not just for Sundays or for Christmas or Easter or whatever. It was really cool and talked about some other stuff. The niece told us that in her life she felt that she had not been diligent in doing the things that God expected of her, that she had been kind of weak. She told us that she was ready to start doing what God wanted. She said she liked receiving our lessons. It was really neat. Mariella had told us some things as well.  

Every time I am in their house it almost just cry because the spirit is so strong. I just love this family so much and I love how they are so willing to act and to just trust God. I just love it. Every time I am there I just feel that one day they will be an eternal family and it is just so cool. Their 11-year-old daughter is always there and she is always so attentive. She is adorable. She always participates and loves the lessons as well, and I just love this family so much. They are awesome. 

We also worked with one of the other families, Julian and Joanie.  They are progressing well. They didn’t come to church this Sunday and we’re not sure why, kind of a bummer. We talked with them a couple of times this week. They always have questions about the Plan of Salvation; life before this life, life after death, and life here. We have been explaining this to them, but we told them that their ultimate goal is to obtain exaltation and live with God forever. We asked them if they have ever talked about getting married. They said they were going to have a long chat about it. We asked if they wanted to be baptized and they said yes, but they knew they had to get married first. So, we will work on that for awhile. They are willing to talk about now where in the past they didn’t even want to talk about it, so they are progressing. 

It has been kind of a slow week, but still lots of good things. I also went on exchanges with the Zone leaders. It was supposed to be with just one zone leader because the other one was going to Cusco to get some papers, but they realized that their travel plans were for the next day. So I ended up hanging out with both zone leaders on Wednesday and it was fun.  They are cool guys – Elder Saunders from Utah and Elder Sanchez from Mexico.  We were running around it started getting kind of stormy looking, so we ran back to their apartment real quick so we can grab coats and stuff.  As we got there we could hear this crazy sound and we knew there was a storm coming. We were looking around the house and we hear this big “thud.” A piece of hail had hit the metal awning that was about the size of a quarter! We look out and we can see this huge hailstorms coming toward us so we ran inside. The hailstones were seriously like the size of dimes. We couldn’t go outside because it hurt and they were so big they would have just torn right through an umbrella. I took some pictures. It hailed so much that after the hailstorm we could make snowballs out of the hail. 

After the storm we went outside in the pouring rain and went to an appointment. We got soaked and after our appointment it had rained so hard that the streets were flooded and we could hardly get around the city. The water was about a foot deep. It was really fun. 

We are in week six of the transfer, which means we have changes next Monday. My companion has been here about six months, so I am expecting to have a new companion, but we will see how it goes. 
Love you all! I will “talk” to you next week.  

This is D.J. Pearce, signing out.