Elder Sanders

Elder Sanders

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas in Ecuador !!! Dec 2011

Merry Christmas !!!!

Hello family!   ¡Feliz Navidad!
How was your celebration of Christ`s birth? Mine was pretty swell.  After the Skype call home I certantly felt a grand longing for home.  VERY MUCH!  But, our day went well, and I`m really glad that we were able to have that phone call.
Thanks for sending your letters and pictures!  It sure looks like you guys had a great time over there, I sure wish I could`ve had a taste of some of that food!  Gnocchis... OH!  How I crave them so!  But I`m glad that it all went very well for you all.  

On Tuesday, we had our Christmas dinner with the president and his wife.  They had tables laid out as if it were a fancy restaurant, and we proceeded to have ham, mash potatoes, festive veggies, and cheesecake. (ALL rarities here in Ecuador for Gringos to find), then we had a `noche de hogar`   (Family home evening), and finished with caroling out in front of a mall.  It was great!  I even received a new study journal with my name on it!  It was great!

For Chirstmas Eve, we had to return at the house at 4, and proceeded with our own little Christmas dinner, a full chicken, fries, and Jell-O.  Pretty swell, along with a bunch of Christmas candy the members gave us.  Essentially, we had our own little party with Christmas music, many games of Monopoly, and plenty of Drawing time.  We went to bed happy.

Christmas morning, now that was one to remember.  (before I continue, during what I am about to recourse next did not put myself or my companion in any risk of danger! (Suspense builder) )
Ok, so when we awoke Christmas morning we were both way tired.  Probably because we were out and about all of yesterday and had to get up early for church.  I felt a little sick, and we got ready to go.  While we were grabbing some food, I noticed that there was a very loud knocking outside.  I looked to see the neighbor´s house in front of ours had some guys kicking at the door, yelling while the family was on the roof yelling back.  Yup, typical South American temper tamptrums.  We started to leave, and stepped out the door to behold a literal brawl of 15 people in the street, wives being flung off to side and men frantically bashing on each other.      Slightly shocked, we continued off to church, our `spirit of Christmas`  momentarily eviscerated.   What kind of world is it that people so childishly do such things, and especially on Christmas morning! Gah!      WELL!  Do not fear, for nothing like that could ruin Christmas day for us!  (Hm, I`m not even sure if I should`ve shared that...  oh well!)

Church went great, we met with a lot of members, visited some investigators during the day, shared plenty of messages on the purpose of Christ`s birth and life, and had to arrive home at 6.  We made some spaghetti, watched the movie Legacy, and essentially relaxed.  (along with some more monopoly!)   Essentially, it was a nice Christmas.  Yes, I did feel deprived of family in a physical sense, but even without gifts or grand dinners, it was still a fantastic holiday.  

And this next week is New Years!  I hear down here in South America the people really like to celebrate it in a grand way down here!  I`ll tell you about it next week, but for now... PHOTOS!

1- Eden ready to devour Christmas dinner
2- Our zone with the president and his wife
3-My comp and I at the president`s house
5- I don`t know why it was there, but we found this costume to dress up as Christmas present in our house.  We later converted it into a table cloth.

AND!  Alas, I have only received one package so far!  Which one?  And the winner is... THE LECHTENBERGS!  Thanks Patty for your swell gift! Although it`s late to start it, I shall begin now and   build each advent every day until the deed is done.  Thanks!  

I shall keep you all updated as I receive more!

-Elder Sanders

Monday, December 12, 2011

week 22

Hello one and all!  Ok, to start, I have 2 HUGE news items!  One is partially sad, and the other will make you guys go ballistic with joy!  First off, remember how my companion was waiting for his VISA for Venuzuela? Well, I guess it came and he`ll be leaving in a few days!  AUGH! I`ve only been with him a week!  So, I shall be receiving a new companion, and... well, I`m just not sure what day exactly or when, but I shall let you know next week!

Ok, number 2.  I cannot hold it in any longer... :D  OK!  Today, while we were eating at the Mall by our sector with other missionaries in our sector, we were approached by a woman who said she was a member.  A member from... SALT LAKE CITY!  AH-HA! Her name is Ivon, (I hope that`s how to spell it, it sounds like Ibon but could be Evon) she was born in Ecuador, and is here visiting her mom.  And now... get ready for this... she`s coming home Thursday, and is GOING TO VISIT YOU GUYS THIS SATURDAY!  HA HA!  She`s also going to bring my mega-letter that has something for everyone in the family. (if I would have known that we were to meet, I would`ve made a package of sorts, but oh well!)   SO!  she has our phone number and address, and her number is 801-358-7904.   It`s going to be GREAT!  (well, for you guys, enjoy!)

Alright, so now to ´normal business.¨¨¨

First off, this sector has been tough!  To begin our week, we only had 1 investigator, and the majority of our week has been contacting.  On Tuesday we were out contacting for 7 hours!  SEVEN!  Well, it`s been a long, and rather tough week, but we now have 2 families with a baptismal date for the end of the month, and it looks as if we may get 1 or 2 more!  We shall definitely work hard!   
And I think the hardest part of going to a new sector is that you need to re-memorize the city and re-become friends with the members.  That`s a lot to absorb!  But I shall stay true!

And to reply to the letters I received:
1- CONGRATS TO ERIK!  First fruits of baptism indeed!   I can`t wait to get your stuff, and... your Christmas package is on the way!  I`m going to send ya a letter and pictures by hand or by email, whichever I can get to first.

2- Yes, our insect-infected beds are being purged.  I have had no more recent bug-bites.
3- IT looks as if the Chirstmas party went great! Those pictures were crazy!  I wish I could`ve joined ya... maybe in a year or so. :)
4- BRANDON LEISHMAN!!! Your Christmas package is on the way too!  Expect to receive my letter Via Email soon!
5- CONGRATS TO THOMAS FAGG!  I shall be sending an E-mail to you also!  I just need to do it!
6- President and Sister Ghent are awesome.  They both are kind, give great talks, and are just great role models.  I don`t get to see them often, just when I go to the offices or during a special capacitation.
7- CHANTEL!  Thanks for those pics, they made my day!  (I printed one out to secretly stash somewhere... ha ha!)
8- Yes, thanks for the Spiritual thought mom!  It also sounds as if the group ward activity went great! Here`s some swell quotes to share:

^To be Christian means to forgive the inexcusable in others, because has has forgiven the inexcusable in you.¨    -CS Lewis

´You cannot convert people beyond your own conversion´  -Neal A Maxwell

´The future is only as bright as your faith.´   Thomas S Monson

and lastly (when it comes to receiving revelation during a lesson or at home...)

´God Can`t Inspire an Empty Bucket.´     -Elder Blackwelder

Well!  I`ll update everyone next week on how our families are doing, and about my new companion.  Have fun meeting with Ivon, and I shall be awaiting your packages! 

-Elder Sanders

PS; I still don`t know what day I can do the video conference, but I think it shall be either Christmas Eve or the day before.  I shall ask this week to find out!

PSS: Dinner with the president will be this 21ish, I gotta verify because I changed Zones!

PSSS: Photo 1- The view from our house.
Buenas Tardes!  I`m writing here from a little town called Guamani (I`m not sure if that`s the right spelling...)   So yes... I WAS CHANGED!  No More Elder Gomez!  AAUGH!  I wanted to spend Christmas with him in our sector with our families soo.. badly...
but, I suppose there is purpose in everything, so I shall tell you when cool things start happening.  Well, my new companion is Elder Manrique, a 25 year old missionary from Quayaquil, Ecuador, awaiting to receive to his visa so he can go to Venezuela.  He has been here for about 8 months.    SO! That was that.  I guess now I`ll really have to brush up on my spaish, because it`s 0% English from here on out. 
Time to answer questions!  Weather in Ecuador is quite nice, it`s either warm, sunny, or rainy.  And when it gets rainy, it is intense. My rain-coat that looks like a WWI trench coat does wonders!  Pretty much the weeks switch off from being hot, to rainy.  So, all my shoes and clothes check out ok.    And our investigator that was going to get baptized was unable this weekend, becasue this week is a thing called, Fiestas de Quito, which is a 2 week long celebration of the city.  It`s all pretty mellow, except for the dance parties which are 3 days in a row and are just bursting with gigantic speakers, way to much alchohol and smoking, and everyone goes with thier entire families. Kids and all.  There are plenty of parades, dances, and just a communial feeling.  Pretty swell, but I fear that Michelle will have to wait until next week to be baptized.  We shall see! 
So, our investigators are doing well, but the majority of their baptismal dates fell because they didn`t attend church! GAR! I despise it when you tell them the whole week that they need to attend, they agree to, and when you go to their home sunday morning to pick them up, they just don`t even answer the door.  Lame. 
But it sounds like things are exciting at home! Argentine dinners, the whole State of Utah destroyed by the God of Wind, our chickens have given the gift of omlettes,  a great 80`s murder myster dinner, and the Atonement is still giving blessings.    Oh, and can I have your old washing machine? That would be so much easier than a lavanderìa (laundromat).:)      But yeah, life`s going pretty well, and it turns out our beds were infested with microscopic bugs. A week ago,we started getting tons of little bug bites and later learned that they were indeed from miniscule insects that live in beds.  Not bed bugs, but I forgot the spanish name for them.  Our beds shall be disinfected soon, it`s good timing that I left!              I`m also going to send out a Christmas letter soon, I`ll have to ship it off next week, it`s almost finished!   The holiday season down here is going to be great!  I`ll have to tell you about the video conference once I figure out when I can do it.  I guess also this month we get to go caroling in a shopping mall and eat a christmas dinner with the mission president and his wife later!  Alas, since I just got here, I`ll need to tell you later who is ready for baptism and our new investigators and familes.  I shall conquer again!   (I hope)
-Elder Sanders: Missionary on the edge.
1-the most pointless fence ever conceived
2- Elder Gomez and I enjoying the fruits of fresh Ecuadorian salsa
3- The extent of our christmas decorations:  a deranged snowman that we found under our desk, which we both think could be used for both Christmas and Halloween
4- La Familia Calvas!  They gave us the thanksgiving feast, and are just plain awesome!  (I shall miss them..)
5- My old zone, Goodbye friends!  (PS, the guy with Blondish hair is from LEHI!  he went to school with me!  Elder Tuckett!


Week 19

Why, hello there!  This is Elder Sanders, reporting in for the week!  Well, first off, happy Thanksgiving!  By the photos, it looks as if you all had a stupendously joyous time together.  I´ll admit, I really want one of those indian hats now.  (The indiginous hats here are rather like fedoras...literally)  BUT! Thanks for the letters, and I always love when you guys write to me. 
And BEN IS ENGAGED? Nelly! That´s stupendous! And Amanda? ¡Doble Loco!  It sure looked like quite the joyous day, espcially those pies... 8!?  What I would´ve done for 1 slice...   and I think I do remember Emily, I´ll be sure to have confidence next time we make cookies together.  Well, anyways, I´m attaching some pics of our ecuadorian thanksgiving and some other fun ones.  As of right now, we have 1 person with a baptismal date (because all of our other ones fell because they didn´t attend church, so we´ll have to set a new one with them) and we have about 7 investigators.   I´m doing ok on health, I´m eating very well, and as for meats, I have chicken every day, I had a an entire fish deep fried (entire as in I believe they took it out of the water and put it in the pan.), and some duck, which is really good! (and to answer your question, I´ve stopped gaining weight and my body is now equalizing.)  Plus, Elder Gomez and I made some homemade raspberry syrup and salsa.  MMM!!! 
So, we did have a baptism planned this last Saturday, for the sister of H that we baptized last week.  We started the day out good, set up in the chapel, called members and investigators to attend, visited her in the morning, and filled the font with warm water, (no buckets this week)!  Essentially, all was going well.  A half an hour before the service, we gave her a call to see if we could pick her up.    Instead, her mom answered, and said that we was at her college giving a presentation.  Apparently, she had this huge end of the year thing at her school planned for the evening, until 10PM, and throughout the whole week was too shy to tell us!  GAH!  While this was going on, members and Investigators started arriving.  The whole evening was going to shambles!  So, essentially, we waited a half an hour to she if she could get out early, and in the mean time watched videos with all the guests that had arrived to attend.  Well, she never showed up, and the night was sort of a bust.  So, we planned to re-do the service Sunday before church, where she could attend with us and get confirmed the same day.  And in order to have the font filled in time, we had to get up at 5 to begin filling the font.  We waited until it was reasonably early to call her and see if they could make it... and the reply was no.  That after a week of interviews, visits, and meetings, she didn´t feel ready and wanted to push it until next week.  So, essentially the jist of the weekend was dissapointing, but hopefully by this Saturday, she will be a member of the Church.  :)
Well, everything else is good, and changes are next week!  ACK!  I hope we don´t seperate, Atahualpa & Elder Gomez and I are such a great team!  And as for Christmas... People started putting up their trees and lights at the start of november.  It´s gonna be good!  But alas...  I am robbed of those cheeky christmas songs playing in every public venue possible. *sniffle*   BUT! I can skype you guys, so start researching it now so I can do it with ya!  And they still have not told me when or where I can call you, so stay tuned!  (right now, I´m preparing a mega-letter with christmas letters for you guys, so stay tuned! I shall find a post office!) 
And yes Erik, I am jealous that you had Wassil.
-Elder Sanders
PS i´m attaching the other pictures in a seperate email!
PSSS- Do you now if Erik and KT got my letters? I don´t know if they´ve written back yet... the suspense is immense!

Elder Sandes first baptism

week #17

Hello to one and all! Today is a glorious day!  Why?  Guess who helped bring in 3 new converts to the church?  HAHA! I`m attaching photos of the glorious event!  But first, I`d like to say thanks to Eli, Chantel, Mom, Dad, Patti, and Grandma & Grandpa Sanders for all of your wonderful letters, they were quite the surprise.  And: Chantel is 21?! Meghan is in the MTC?!  Tristian is a `huge ham`?   What glorious events!
And now, I shall recount the event that was Saturday:    First off, we had 3 people planned for baptism at 3 PM: G, T, and her neice H Gon and T were good to go, but apparently we never quite got the written permission of her mom for baptism, so we went in the morning to quite literally teach/convince her enough to let her daughter get permission. (without going into details, the mom is a crusty lady). But! It worked out, although Heidi had a huge fear of all the people watching her, so we scheduled a baptismal service at 8:00 for just her and her family.  We were over there for over 2 hours, and needed to run over to the church to start filing the font.  We got there at about 12:40, and turned on the water.  At 2:30, we returned to start setting up. And to our horror.. the water was only 1/3 full!  Frantically, we started hauling buckets of water from the underground resevoir of the church, and soon enough, people started showing up.  But, the great thing was, everyone started helping us, even the some of investigators showed up and started to help too!  Synergy! 
So, we were able to fill it quickly, and although it was cold, it was ready.  Everyone arrived, and we started the service.  G`s friend baptized him, and I baptized T.  YAAHH!!!   The service soon ended, and as we were closing up, we learned that while I was baptizing T, beforehand she misunderstood us and didn`t give me her full name, (which you NEED to recite in the baptismal prayer for it to be valid), so... technically... it was invalid!  ACK!!!  So, we quickly planned to re-do it later in the night when we were going to baptize H So, by the end of the night, everything worked out, we figured out how to make the water warm again, and we had 3 baptisms.  The next day at church, Elder Gomez confirmed G, I confirmed T, and our bishop confirmed H.  It was a Great Weekend. 
And how can you top off the perfect baptismal Sunday?  A surprise THANKSGIVING DINNER from our Mamita, that`s what!  Turkey, potatoe balls, and more rice than should ever had entered my plate. But I was SO thankful.  And yes, while carving the turkey, I did feel a pang of sorrow that my family was about a continent and a half away.  But, I shall remember you all! 
Well, I shall be sure to share any other Thanksgiving stories this Thursday, and wish you all a very happy Dia de gratitud. 
-And while I have time, question answering session!-
-our area is good, we`ve been avoiding anything potentially dangerous, our families are well, and we should have a couple more this Saturday for baptism!
- For the Christmas package, I can`t say there`s anything else that I need, just the peachios, Trafalga T, and... LEGOS!  Well, I also need to start trying to get presents for my friends, so I`ll write you next week if I need you to send anything.  (I`ll probably do something for Brandon & Erik, and see if I can do anything for the family.  I know sending packages here is UBSURDly expensive, and I still need to find a place close to my house that I can send it from) 
-OH, for light and gas, the owners of the building pay the big bills, and divide the pay out between those who live there. 
And:  my address:
Ecuador Quito Mission
Calle Robles 640 y Amazonas
Quito, Ecuador
Well, I believe that is all.  See ya later!
-Elder Sanders
PS- congrats to David Tolman on his gloriousl re-entry

Week # 17

¡Buenas Tardes!  Somos misioneros, de la Iglesia De JesuCristo, do los Santos de los Ultimos Dias. Yo Soy Elder Sanders, y esté es mi compañero.¨
Yup, that`s what it`s all about. 
Ok!  So, this week has been just peachy.  No earthquakes or other hazards to missionaries.  And before I dig into the meat of the letter, I finally recieved those `Dear Elders`!   I`m not quite sure how long it took for them to get here, but yes Ashlyne, just like water in a desert.  (And!  Thanks to Jodi, Mike, Jennifer, Julian, Alexandra, Mom, Dad, Chantel and Erik for your letters! Just like magic!)  And Ashlyne is dating?  Egads!  Plus, I hope your throat and test are ok now Chantel, life is quite exciting, is it not? And it sounds like Dad`s trip to Philadelphia went swell too.  Send my love to Meikayla and Madison too!   AND- Hooray for Sydney and Meghan!  New steps in life indeed!
Agite, this week has been quite focused on our investigators.  Right now, here are those who have a baptismal date: for this weekend, the Familia Q, (A Grandma and Granddaughter who were a reference and are totally loving the gospel!), Hmo. G, and for the rest of the month, the familia M, and hopefully an older couple named G y R. Plus, we may also baptize a person named Al who has been attending church for 5 or so years, but isn`t baptized yet.  We were going to, but we soon found out that there may be complications with that because we heard he used to lie to missionaries in his sector and it`s just mixed up,so we`ll have to see.                           It is just quite busy with them all!
AND!  I got to give 2 blessings this week, the first one was a blessing of council for one of our investigators.  For a week or so, we`ve been teaching another older couple who had a tendency to argue alot during the lessons with each other. We had a good lesson last Monday, and returned Tuesday afternoon to visit them, and found people moving out.  Quickly offering if we could help, we soon discovered they were moving stuff out of our investigators` house.  They had gotten divorced practically overnight!  The husband was quickly out of there, and the wife was left in shambles.  It was then that I got to give her a powerful blessing.  And I shall say, alot of the words I said did not come form me.  (The priesthood is power!) And the second was for the wife of Alfredo, who has cancer and will be living in a hospital for a couple months. I too was able to give here a blessing of health, (which coincidentally was the same day as the first one I gave to the divorced wife) and that one too, I felt was very strong.  Essentially, I was just on a Priesthood roll that day.      It was great.
So, I can`t say I have any `fun` stories to tell like the banana spiders, but this week we also had a Zone Conference with a member of the 70`s.  It was way good, and I was able to see Elder Redd again along with his new companion.  And- the familia Castillos from Carapungo, are now baptized!  YES! Although I didn`t get to do the actual baptism because I was in Carapungo, I definately was a major part in their conversion.  Then, at church, we had another member of the 70 visit! Surprise!  
Yeah, so all in all, a good week.  This one should be equally as busy, but we shall see.  AND!  I have one more thing I want to share with you guys, this is a recipe I got from Elder Redd, and I pretty much live off of it now.  Here it is:
Elder Redd Cereal  (double or triple as many times as you like, and it doesn`t need to be exact either, just general)
-4 cups instant oatmeal
-2 cups granola
-1 cup panela (I don`t know the english equavelant, it`s pretty much raw sugar cane and looks like brown sugar)
Mix in a container, and eat with milk.  It`s also stupendous with bananas, yougurt, or whatever else you can find.   We make a huge carton every week.. and its... so..  GOOD!
Well, that`s about all I have for now... but I do have one last thing to say:
I`ll have to draw you something or write you a poem... but may all your wildest dreams come true!
-Elder Sanders
-And yes, I do wear my shoes everywhere I go. ESPECIALLY in the shower. And I call my district leader every day, and we don`t have a phone.  If you go bearfoot, `you`re gone`!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween ! Here are some stories that are a Halloween nightmare for a mom ! :p enjoy !!!

Happy Halloween Meaties!  To one and all!  How does it fare?  Well, the world is just swell here in Atahualpa, my new sector.  All is well over here, we`re contacting, visiting, and just working hard. (And as for new experiences, I`ve finally had my first 2 bowls of Chicken-Foot soup and lamb stomach!  Yum Yum!) My comp, Elder Gomez, is just swell too.  Essentially, this sector is pretty similar to Carapungo, only it`s a little more `dangerous´at night.  So, it`s only a matter of time before I get my real first mugging, but we are being really safe about how we travel about.    And that`s not the only danger, I have 2 swell stories!  The first one is: yes, we did feel the Earthquake.  So we`re sitting, studying, and then what started out as what we thought was a normal plane passby quake turned more dramatic.  Yes, the whole city shook for a grand total of 5 seconds, but it sure got our hearts pumping!  Excitement! 
Ok, here`s the fun one:  over here Elder Gomez and I LOVE guinellos (fresh picked bananas), and we buy tons of them. Take a very close look at the one in the picture, looks Tasty, eh? Anyways, we were pretty much overtly excited to have just purchased this giant bunch of bananas when we noticed some leaves and webbing on the back.  Perturbed by the filthyness on our banana stash, we whipped out a lighter to easily burn away the white web.  But Lo!  The moment flame touched the web ball, simultaniously a giant banana spider lunged forth as hundreds of it`s babies spewed forth instantaniously everywhere.  We practically screamed, tossing the infected bunch into the sink as the hundreds of baby spiders spread quickly all over the bananas, the table, and the frigde. Frantically, we killed all the small ones before they could incubate in some cranny of our home, and proceeded to pour tons of boiling water on the bunch of bananas, killing all life while still preserving our beloved fruit.        Looking back at the picture, I can`t believe I was holding a whole infestation of spiders right up against my face.       Fun times, eh!?  (I`m drawing a comic about it right now, but didn`t finish it in time to send this week, but by next monday, it shall be ready!)
Ok, now here`s the spiritual side of what`s been happening.  So, since we`re both new to this sector, we have done tons of finding new famlies to teach, since we`re pretty much starting from scratch.  (except for one family, The Gonzalos, he`s already assisted church once and lives right across the street, yes! Automatic investigator! )  And lately, we`ve been teaching a new family we found on Tuesday, the familia Torres.  It`s 2 parents with 2 kids, and their whole family is DEEPLY rooted into the Catholic church, so it`s been a little tricky to teach them, but it`s really neat to see that as we explain the Book of Mormon, the restored church and authority, and other doctrine, you can see the understanding in their faces, but they don`t want to change because they`ve been rooted in their church their entire lives.  (and by their reactions, I think Cecilia, the mom, is afraid to know if this church really is the true church, and the changes and sacrifices she`ll have to make in order to live to the highest standard of God)    BUT,    the real thing I want to share is that yesterday, close to the end of the lesson, as we were closing and i  was bearing my testimony, I felt the spirit in a way I`ve never felt it before.  (because normally, it`s rather like an enveloping peaceful feeling) But instead, I felt it as if it were a literal burning in my bosom, enfusing my heart and feeling on the brink of shedding tears.  The spirit was testifying at that moment.  I felt it, and I truly hope they felt it too, and did not try to shove it off, but that was quite honestly the first time ever felt something like that, and thought that it was something I`d like to share with you guys at home.
So, read your scriptures, check your bananas before eating them, and have a happy Halloween!
-Elder Sanders

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Eden is getting transfered !

Greetings to all!
  Ok, before I can do anything I must say: Today is changes!  That means I am leaving Elder Redd, and heading to a new sector with a new comp.  (Luckily, his name is Elder Gomez, a friend from the Provo MTC who got to leave the Peru CCM Early because he could already speak spanish, neat eh?)  So right now, I`m enjoying my last few hours with my ´Dad´ Elder Redd, and it is quite sad!  And to make it even more crunchy, the family Castillos is getting baptized this Saturday, and they would`ve been my first baptism!  But no!  ¡Cambiar!     But it`s ok, I`m not down because it is the way it must be done! 
So, we shall be opening a NEW sector, and I am totally stoked.    Next, thanks for your pics and letters Mom, Dad, Ashlyne, Chantel, Meikayla, Madison & cousins!  They were oh so sweet,  (and I have some great photos to attach too!)         And you guys asked if I`ve eaten anything weird... well. First, I`ve had a drink called Polaca that looks and tastes just like watery cake batter and is totally DELICIOUS!  Next, elder Redd and I have mastered making Monte Cristo Sandwiches, which is simply a ham, egg, and cheese sandwich dunked in pancake batter, deep fried in oil with syrup and powdered sugar.  (Yes Eric, they are good!)   And lastly, at a members house I received a plate of rice, potatoes, and tons of chunks that looked liked animal cartilage.  After pretty much muscling down the meal, I later learned that those chewy mysterious chunks were in reality (Ashlyne cover your ears) just slabs of sliced pig skin, cooked to a gross chewy perfection.  *shudder*
Ok, our ward is doing well, our investigators are sort of going well. The Castillos are right on track, but the Vallesteros have slipped a little and we haven´t seen them for a week, but we are teaching them again and it looks like they are getting on track again, but Elder Redd will have to hurry because they are moving on Nov 5th!  Our other 2 families are getting tough to get in contact with, but we just found a new one that is completely ready to receive the gospel.  They were a member reference, and they were actually getting exciting when we pulled out the Book of Mormon on our first visit.  So, the weather is swell, we do our laundry at a `Lavanderia`  (or laundromat)  and Thank you thank you thank you for your family`s conversion story.  I will definately share it!
 Elder Sanders
Next week I`ll send pics of my new sector and comp!  Ciao! Lo siento que no tengo mucho tiempo para escribir mas en español, pero tratarè el proximo semana!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Week #14

Hola once again!

 And once again, I only have 1/2 my email time!  (After studying, doing our district activity, buying food, pulling out money for the week, and bus fare, time really gets sucked out on P-Days, ya know?)   BUT once again, life is going swimmingly.

 I`m doing well, (I just got a little altitude sickness, but I shall write why because it was awesome!)  And yes, congrats to Meghan, Rick and Cash!  I`m am way stoked for you guys!  (As for preparation tips, just read Preach my Gospel thoroughly beforehand, it will help a ton!)     

And before I forget, for the Christmas package there isn`t anything I need (we packed Really Well), but I think it would be great if it included Peachie-O`s (because they have every candy down here except that), a story-tournament T-shirt from our laser tag tourney at Trafalga, since I left before they were created (and if you can`t get one, a Spider man one would probably be way cooler), and by tradition: Legos are a must!!!  
As for us, we have 4 families with a baptismal date, the V's , the Castillos, the Morales, & Hermano Sardiñas.  Out of all of them, the Castillos are going really strong, and Hmo. (Brother) V just informed us he has hefty problems with the Word of Wisdom ACK! (non-church members, ask a member because it`s a great commandment that involves health & harmful substances and takes time to explain!) 
 So his date may need to be bumped back until he can overcome and repent of it.  Plus, Elder Redd has this nifty small white-board that I`ve been using during lessons for very simple visual demonstrations of commandments and Doctrine. So yes, I`m using my talents to bring others unto Christ!  It`s truly a blessing!  Plus, I got to give my first ever blessing in Spanish to someone who was sick, and i`d say it went swell. 
AND!  Mom, could you send me the story of your family`s conversion story? I don`t quite remember all the details and would LOVE to be able to share parts of it with our investigators as they learn more about coming to the Church.  It would be fantastic! 
And today, we got to a big ski-lift attached to an Ecuadorian version of Trafalga, and on top of the mountain we got to see ALL of Quito valley. There are so many houses it is unbelievable crazy to think of all the people who still haven`t had a chance to hear the gospel.  I`ll attach pics, and I love you all!  
-Elder Sanders
PS- As for letters from here, I`d say it takes about a month. 
PSS- OH! And you can still do DearElders!  They send them to mission office, so I get them like every other week, but send thèm anyways!
If you would like to write Eden got to www.dearelder.com
click on select mission , go down to Ecuador Quito-free
then click on write a letter
Fill in the blanks with your name and address
write elder eden sanders on the bottom right corner
and go down and write the letter.
And send....

Its free and Eden obviously :( by what he writes every week would like some letters. You don't need to write a lot just a note so he knows we haven't forgotten him and we love him.
Thanks to all my friends and family that support Eden and are there to share this adventure with him
Love you all
A mom that misses him terribly

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Week #13

Hola Hola Hola!

 Tis` I, Elder Sanders reporting in for the week!    Once again, thanks for your jubilicious letters, they are oh so tasty!  (figuratively) (And I got your letter Jaimie, I shall write swiftly! I hope...) And I also just found out that you guys can still do DearElders!  The only problem is they are delayed, and I can only pick them up when I or someone else goes to the offices, but still please send them anyways! no matter when they get here, they are always appreciated.  Next: I got the package of letters from Woods Cross!  I haven`t had a chance to read them all yet, or my other e-mails from Dad and Chantel, but I shall read and answer them very soon!  (And I may have to send out letters to Dave & Jessica by E-mail, post offices down here are sort of rare, or just far away. )    OH! And the plaque looks awesome and yes, I did draw a picture of Christ in Adam`s classroom.
OK!  Next I`m just gonna tell you guys all about the fun stuff that`s been going on.   First, in the priesthood session of conference, W. Christopher Waddell, I got to meet him at the Peru CCM!  HA HA!   Next, sometimes in Ecuador the water and power sometimes turn off for an hour or so unexpectedly, and when we found our electricity was out, and not turning back on, we had to investigate.  It turns out that the last missionaries that were in our house didn`t pay the power bill, and lo and behold our electricity was cut!  Not only did we have no lights, but our fridge was out and our hot water too!  (yes, showers here are run by an electrical device attached to the shower head).  So for 3 days it sort of... sucked.  (yep, I know how you feel E.Leishman!)  But now all is well and warm.

  Also, We GOT TO MAKE PIZZAS!  Both on Thursday (only E.Redd and I) and today, with the entire district (and we also were able to watch Tangled in Spanish too, with apple-crisp! double treats!!)  Mayhem and happiness!  Thank you so much mom for that delicious pizza recipe, it was a `taste of home`!   (Puns...)  Oh yeah, I thought I could forever escape allergies and road construction halfway across the world, right? Ha Ha...  WRONG.    My eyes are itchy and the road is all torn up by our house... I guess that`s just the way it is!
 So, right now we have 2 progressing families that have a baptism for the 22 of October, (the closest ones we have so far), la familia Castillo y la familia Vallasteros.  Both awesome, We have other investigators, and are visiting ward members, and it`s pretty good.  We are always busy with appointments (citas) and contacting, so all is running smoothly.   
And as for a spiritual thought, `while I`ve been studying and watching people accept and reject us, I`ve taken a lot of thought into people`s desires. Our salvation, our life, our choices are all based on our initial desires.  If we want to live righteously and be saved or reject and fall short of glory, it`s based on what we want.  (we have the choice to choose) also, in the Scriptures it says we will be judged on our actions and desires.  So, if we follow a commandment, but don`t want to do it at all, (such as paying tithing grudgingly) then we`re not following the commandment 100%.  And same with prayer, if you have faith and sincere desire to know, then you will be blessed with an answer.  Neat, huh? Just something I`ve been noticing more and more often.
Ok, to close I would just like to say...
yep, I was going to send a card or something, but the post office deal is quite tedious. So I think I`ll have to take a pic and send it to you.  (Alas, I have no time now to send it now but I shall next letter!) 
And also for pics, I`m attaching some of us making pizzas, and a few of my conference 
PS- the orange juice down here is to die for! 

Monday, October 3, 2011

Week #12

Hola a todas familas y amigos!  Today is P-Day, and it is spiffin!  This week has been quite busy, with many meetings and new families.  Before I get into the meat of my e-mail (because once again I am low on time! ACK!)  I`m going to just answer all the questions everyone asked me:  I`m glad you`re car is up to date Chantel, and I will definately pray for your health!  I am good, I got to hear conference in English in our own little room, and Had pages of notes and tons of sketches!  I`ll have to send them next week, because alas I do not have time to photo them now, but next week!  And no, we did not have time to make pizza, but we will this Thursday during the training meeting at the Church! 
The families we`re teaching could be going better, right now we have 2 families and 1 investigator.  So far, our 2 families are slowly accepting and progressing, but need to pray about our message more.  Janet was doing really well, she attended church with us and we`ve had about 3 meetings, but now she`s avoiding us and she still hasn´t read or prayed about our message (The book of Mormon, and if this church is true)  we`re trying!  As for money, we all have our own credit cards and every Monday we pull out $20 or $30 dollars for the week. I haven`t used my `personal card yet` , but if I need cash help, I will most certantly tell you!  
The weather is nice, very cloudy and cool during the day.  EXCEPT WHEN IT RAINS.  Cascading fountains soaring freely into our souls!  (and actually, I kind of like it.  It`s very adventurous) 
The food is, well, Ecuadorian.  So good, and I guess technically we have 5 or so mamitas beacause we visit a family every week for lunch.  And they are Grand.  :-D        
My average day; awake at 6:30 am , excerise (mostly...) for a bit, shower and eat and be ready to study at 8. Then 4 hours of personal and companionship study!  Then off to our investigators and contacting! We eat at 1, and usually work until 9 or 9.30.     As for listening to the spirit, I think I need to do better, and I definately need to practice my spanish more!    And no, The mangoes are not in season yet, so I`ll have to buy some later.  *sniffle*    But good luck Dad at your project at work, and to Mom and the family!      
  Thanks madison for your letter, I`ll have to find a way to send your earrings to you. Somehow, the post office is only in the large city areas and sending a single pound is like 30 Dollars.  EEK!   
Good luck with your Lego video and Drama class, ask if you need any tips!    
-Elder Sanders
PS- ERIK! I got your letter, let the international add-on begin!  (plus, did you receive the one I sent you?)

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

week # 11 Quito Ecuador

Hola Familia and Amigos !

ok, I´m running super low on time today so I´ll hurry!   This week was swell, we have 2 people that are committed to baptism, and we will have more meetings with them soon to see if they are ready to go in a week or so!  The area is still pretty tough, we`re getting a lot of contacts and rejections as we go, but we`re progressing well! 

 And I`m way excited for conference this week End! Everyone meets at the church, and I think it may be in Spanish.  Not too sure, I hope I can find a place where it`s in English. (and they have an oven at the church, so we`re going to try to make pizzas! Because we only have a stove in the apartment)  Spanish is still tough, but I practice during all the lessons, and I`m only drinking pure water too.  we get a mamita for every lunch, and our area is pretty safe.  Not perfect, but, you know.  It`s good. 

To answer your questions, Quito is poor with rich areas, and it gets richer the deeper you go to the center, or I should say, poorer the farther out you go, because it goes WAY out!  (Wealthy enough that I`m eating KFC right now! HA HA!)    and thanks for your letters and tips mom and dad!  And I hope you can put your car back together Chantel! 

And while you guys are enjoying your food harvest, I am tasting the first fruits of spiritual harvest
 (D&C 4)  
  Now behold, a amarvelous work is about to come forth among the children of men.
 Therefore, O ye that embark in the aservice of God, see that ye bserve him with all your heart, might, mind and strength, that ye may stand cblameless before God at the  last day.
 Therefore, if ye have desires to serve God ye are acalled to the work;
 For behold the afield is white already to bharvest; and lo, he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in cstore that he perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul;
 And afaith, bhope, ccharity and dlove, with an eeye single to the fglory of God, gqualify him for the work.
 Remember faith, avirtue, knowledge, btemperance, cpatience, dbrotherly ekindness, fgodliness, charity, ghumility, hdiligence.
 aAsk, and ye shall receive; bknock, and it shall be opened unto you. Amen.
 I love this .....


Plus, there are some elders down here that say they met someone that knows our family, their dad`s name is Josten Curtis, and he works at the US embassy down here.  Know em?  Nifty. 
Well, that`s all the time I have, (normally I have an hour to write, and I can print out emails, but today we had to go down to the offices at it just ate up our day)
 Good luck Ashylne in lacrosse, Meikayla in volleyball, Madison in being the heart of the family, and Chantel for staying diligent.  Thanks to all my friends and my relatives that ask about me and pray for me, it means a lot , I love you all and pray for all of you too.
 Goodbye and I love ya!

-Elder Sanders

PS I sent a letter out today, so tell me when you get it so I know how long it takes! 

Monday, September 19, 2011

Eden is in the mission field ! Carapungo Ecuador !

Hola a todas hermanas y hermanos!  ECUADOR IS THE BOMB-DIGGITY!  First off, the people are nicer, the city is great, and it seems to go on for miles! (because it really does.)   And I can even see 3 of the 6 volcanoes from where I live, (I thought mom would like to know Quito is in a bowl surrounded by 6 volcanoes! :-)  )      BUT! The town is great, I have my own little yellow apartment, and my companion is spiffin!  His name is Elder Redd, he´s been out here for 15 months, he´s from Idaho, and has a fling for Spam.  (Which, if you get a chance to eat it, it`s actually really good!)  But yes, Mom and Dad, thanks for your letters, Chantel, sounds like life is giving it it´s all! And BRANDON! I got your letter! Thanks man, I`ll try to ship one out as soon as I can figure out the postage over here....   but OK.  I`ll tell you once I receive the primary letters also, because the mission home is where all the letters and packages go (please send them, they are so fun to get!)  and the mission home is about 30 minutes away, by bus.  Ish.

 WELL!   Before coming, I thought missionary work was all door to door approaches for 12 a day 6.5 days a week.  Was I wrong!  The vast percentage of the people we teach are through references through members and the past missionaries.  We go contacting about... hm.. maybe a few hours a day, but the majority of the day is studying, teaching lessons, making appointments, and learning how to serve.  So far, we`ve been teaching a small handful of people, we haven`t had any 2nd lessons with anyone yet, and in reality, the area is kind of dead in a missionary work sense, because it turns out the 2 missionaries who were here before us were really slacking and not following the rules and kind of dumped off.  BUT! Elder Redd and I are trying very hard to re-kindle the spirit of missionary work in our sector, and we`re trying to get references from everyone, teaching lessons with ward members, and I`m just adapting the world of Ecuador.  We make our own breakfasts (we`re already made pancakes, french toast, and Egg+spam sandwiches, that cookbook Mom wrote is great!), and every day of the week we eat with a designated family, or a `mamita´ for lunch.  Lunches here are huge and a little later in the day, so we don`t really have dinner but eat a snack once we return home (usually about 9 or 9.30, no later.)  I`m attaching pictures of my old district, a pic of the view from Pres. Ghents house (WHICH! BTW Mom, sister Ghent remembers you, and we were all talking about it!)  a pic of my Comp and I in our house (and I`m wearing the llama tie!), and my new decked out planner.  I`m praying more than ever, teaching more than ever, and Spanish in the `real world` just got a whole lot tougher!  I feel like out in the field everything is taken up an extra level!  But it`s nice, and I feel more compelled than ever to work.  Plus, I got to go to a baptism last Saturday!  Future goals!                        (Oh!  And before I sign out, 1- did you get my plaque scripture 2- Erik! I sent out an international add-on too! KT should be sending it to you soon! (and for some reason the pictures you attach don`t work... is there another way you can attach them? And yes. I did say those quotes out loud)  3- I must clarify, when I said houses don`t have roofs in Peru, I only meant the tops.  Of course all the homes have roofs!  Sorry for the mixup 4- Look up our area on google maps, it`s in Ecuador, in a town called Carapungo, you can look up the church using lds.org, and we live a few minutes away.  5- Ok, here`s my mission home address

Casilla 17-03-078
Robles 640 y Av. Amazonas
Quito Ecuador

CIAO!   -Elder Sanders.    I`ll tell you once I`ve eaten chicken foot soup.

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Eden's in Ecuador !!!!!!

Hola a toda familia! 
I am now in the country of power:Ecuador!!!   The flight went very well, we got to have a nice day (more like a weekend) of goodbyes at the Peru CCM, and we left at 6Am this morning (the 13th)  We arrived in Ecuador at about 1pm, and the moment we got out of the airplane we gazed upon a glorious landscape with round green mountains creating a bowl filled the colorful buildings.  It is so DARN BEAUTIFUL HERE!  (I´ll send photos next week because this is just supposed to be a Í made it OK´  letter)   So as a metaphor, Lima was like a handful of Megablox, and Quito is like a sea of Legos.  I´m excited!  Right now we´re at the President´s house and tonight we´ll get to go meet our companions.    My new P-Days are Monday, so I´ll have to read your letters and such next week,  CIAO!  (oh, and could you forward this to Erik and Brandon, I guess I can´t e-mail friends, only family)   I LOVE YOU ALL!   -Elder Sanders

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Edens companion :)

Missionaries fighting EVIL ! its awesome !

Edens took his crazy eyes on his mission ? LOL ! funny kid !

Edens distict

Elders Sanders last week in Peru !

¡Hola a todas personas!  
This is my last week here at the MTC, and then by next Tuesday (or Monday, I´m still unsure.) I´ll be off again, straight to Ecuador!!!   This week has been crazy fast, the days are rushing past faster than a flaming llama.  To answer all the questions you guys had in your e-mails (which BTW, thanks a ton for everyone´s letters!)  I´m doing good on money, I´ll try to send a pic of that tie next week, my district is awesome, (I´m sending a photo of them today), the laundry machines here are super nice, and I got Jared´s letter while at the Provo MTC.    Whew!  This last week we were able to go proselyting again, and it was nice, not quite as busy as the last 2, but we were able to get alot of walking time and teach 2 lessons (2 gigantic lessons actually), it wasn´t  a door to door day, but we were with the Bishop visiting inactive members houses, so alot of house hunting.  We had some fun experiences along with spiritual, we got to ride a moto-taxi  (just do a Google search, these things are everywhere and super-awesome!), and tracking without a latino compañero (aka, someone who is fluent in Spanish) went quite well.  We were 2 gringos with only a couple months of Spanish and we were able to pump out a couple lessons, and understand enough to answer questions and even place a Book of Mormon, (which was a really great lesson because we accidentally knocked on the wrong door but decided to teach to whoever answered anyways.)  And of course, as soon as the lesson is over the Spanish becomes really tough to speak well with again.   The spirit can do many wonders. Oh, and also another interesting thing about Peru is that about 95% of the houses are unfinished with no roof because it let´s them avoid a house tax, I guess you couldn´t tell from the picture I sent, but that´s pretty much how the all the houses are.  (Actually, if anyone has the new Hulk movie, watch the first 20 minutes and that´s pretty much exactly how it looks down in some parts of the city, only without roofs! ) So, I´m doing well, reading the scriptures plenty, and I get to go the Temple again today,  which is always, ALWAYS fantastic.Well, I have some more photos I´ve attached, and the one with the Dragon is another District picture I did  ffoorr  mmyy  oolldd    ddiissccttrriicctt,,    wwhhooaahh  tthhee  kkeeyybbooaarrddiiss  ffrreeaakkiinngg  oouutt!!  ssoorrrryy,,  iitt´s not me!  Whew, OK, that´s all I have to say for now, but I´ll be taking a plane next week straight to Ecuador, I´m getting my visa and such before I go, and my travel plans are set.   Thanks again, and I think by the time you hear from me again, I´ll be out in the field!      -Elder Sanders        
(BTW, I´m still praying for you guys, the pre-school, Jamie´s job, family and other missionaries.
Thanks for yours!)

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Eden#6 Peru

Hola Hola Hola!   

      This week was just peachy!  We weren´t proselyting this Saturday, so I don´t really have an intense stories this week, but all in all, everything is running swimmingly.   AND Before I forget (I have forgotten for the last 4 weeks) but I have my plaque scripture!  It´s in :

2Nephi, chapter1 verse23. 
 " Awake, my sons; put on the armor of arighteousness. Shake off the bchains with which ye are bound, and come forth out of obscurity, and arise from the dust."

  Every time I read this, it´s just a rallying cry that makes me want to jump up and get to work.   And I sent you guys a hand letter, with one for Brandon, I cant look up his mission address, but you guys can on face book, so please forward it!  (and KT, thanks for your letter!  I´m sending you a new one, and should get there in... I´m just not sure.)   BUT!  Sounds like life at home is great!  Thanks Parents and Chantel for your letters, and congrats on the ABC4 gig, and Mom, I will definitely pray for your preschool, Jamie, and our cousins in New York.

I always have a prayer for my family every day.     And OK, this past week has just a swell mix of classes and practice sessions.  Actually, It feels like a majority of it has been about Reading the Book of Mormon.  Our new MTC president Cavanaugh  (The one I mentioned last week) has assigned a new rule on how we should waste no time, and put more emphasis on reading the Book of Mormon, because, it´s exactly what our message is.   I think I´ve been reading it for about... I dunno... at least over 3 hours a day.  Crazy eh? And it´s just 30 minutes before class, 5 minutes after every meal, read while your companion is in the bathroom..   our president literally said we should have it in our hand 100%.  Luckily, I have the military ´pocket´edition, so it´s really easy.   And I never knew that I could read scripture for such grand amounts of time, it´s just STUPENDOUS!             (And when I get home, It would be fabulous to write a graphic novel (AKA a comic book) about the B.O.M. ,  the stories in there are just, whew, unbelievable. ) you guys should get cracking too, it´s great!   

  Hm....  it´s tough to write about my classes for a whole letter.... what else?   OH YES!   Elder Call from that letter from Mike, he´s one of my buds here at the MTC!  Woot!    And since today is P-Day, we get to go to the temple again to do some more endowments, YES!  (and I hope by now everyone knows what endowments are, ) but it´s swell.  

  And yes, we have a new batch of Missionaries, and I think the norte americanos outnumber the Latinos, It´s odd!  But our District is trying desperately hard to speak Spanish the whole day.      And it´s working, I mean, we don´t know every word yet, but we can usually get our ideas, thoughts and questions out.  And I will say, It´s not a coincidence that it feels your Spanish improves every time you´re teaching a lesson. 
So, I´ll attach more photos for you guys, I don´t have any ´new´ones, but I´ll send one from last week and from the Provo MTC (the one with the books) and us having fun,                       
 I love you all,  study your scriptures, and buenas suerte!             
 -Elder Sanders

For those of you who are not members of our church, you can go to this site and it explains a little about  temples or LDS.org you can find answers to your questions.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-x_-TQivCx8    ( this  is 3 minute video about temples , if you have any questions please ask us. The internet has some weird stuff and not accurate information.  The temple is a holy place, where we make covenants with God, which helps us to be better people and where family are sealed for eternity .
Thanks for supporting Eden and for the letters and the Love , it means so much to us

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Week #3 in Peru Elder Sanders

Hola a todas personas!
This week has been swell as honey!  First off, all the Latinos (including my compañero) all left for their missions Tuesday morning, so yesterday consisted of about 25 North Americans in the Peru CCM.  But!  Today new companions are rolling in, and I hear about 55 North Americans are coming!  Gringos are no longer the minority (which is kinda bad, because we need more Spanish speakers, and I have a new companion!)  His name is Elder Davidson, and he´s from Salt Lake and serving here in Peru.  (oh! and btw, we got new rooms and one of my roommates lived in Bountiful and was friends with Gordy Maybie, which to those who don´t know, was my childhood best friend!)    Ok. I´m low on time so I´m rushing this stuff out- we just got back from a tour of Peru (we went by the beach, and to the justice building) and it is really beautiful and crazy busy!   All the buildings in that part of Lima feel like you´re in Europe.     BUT! Day2 of proselyting!   Ok, this was quite literally the real deal, they let everyone in their companionship's loose in the neighborhood, and off we went.  2 Missionaries serving the Lord!  The first half hour went OK, we just going door to door and were´nt having too much success, probably because it felt we were making it up as we went along, but we were able to teach at one door, and about 40 minutes into it, this older guy called out to us, and rushed over saying (all in Spanish of course) and right off the bat told us that he knew our church was true, that he had read the Book of Mormon, and was simply just expressing his joy.  Elder Farinango and I didn´t know what else to do besides show our excitement for him.  We invited him to attend church the next Sunday, and gave him some additional study material and he told us where he lived.  (BTW, his name was Domidel Moñoz Hornal) That was probably the best experience of the day.  And even better, our conversation was right outside a store and the owner was looking right at us, so we asked if we could share the same message with him, and he invited us in.  He was Catholic, and... in fact.  From what I saw about 80% of the people down here are Catholic.  And it´s really cool how the people are still willing to listen to our message although we seem to be a different religion, but it´s fantastic to share our message with others.  We show them that The Book of Mormon and the Restoration is just an addition to the gospel, and when we open up to the people, the people open up to us.  We were able to teach a few more lessons throughout the day, and returned to the MTC.  OH! And since pres. Whetten is still sick at the hospital in the US (it turns out he had a tumor in his gall bladder ) and we have a new mission president.  He´s super strict on the rules, but it´s for our good.   And before I continue... HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!     I´ll try to send you a hug, wait...  just pretend I just gave you one, and it lasted about 7 minutes.   There ya go! Well, I have some more photos to attach, one of tons of latino friends, one of my old district (I just barely got a new one) and my new companion.  Tell me if you got my letter with the pictures in it yet,
CIAO! -Elder Sanders.            
  PS- every since day 1 of the MTC, I´ve gained 10 pounds! I guess the food is good over here.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Hola from Peru Letter

Hello and greetings to all!   This week was rather eventful, (and thanks for everyone who sent out e-mails to me, they were great! And continue to send DearElders, they take a while to receive, but that makes them even more precious!   And yes, I got Mom´s, Chantel´s and John´s DearElder)   And before I get into the juice of my letter, I´d like to thanks chantel for her awesome letter and photos of her and Ashlyne holding artillary, Mom for her mega letter and photos, and from Ashlyne!  Oh, and BTW Madison, I forgot to tell you last letter, but there was an old chubby guy sleeping next me on the plane!  Does that mean you won the bet?   And I forgot to ask how (Brown) Devon is doing, is he ok now? Our district prayed for him to get well back in Provo. And Ok, time to answers questions: Peru uses all available space possible. There is no such thing as unused space.  And the traffic here is insane!  Everyone speeds, rushes, swerves and in some of the bigger roads it looks as if everyone is about to get in a car accident every 10 seconds, but no one does.  I bought an awesome tie with a llama embroidered into it, my Compañero is awesome!  I´m not sure when I´ll be back in the US, and they have my visa here.  The food is odd, everything has an aftertaste and all deserts are based on Geletain. And I finally tried some Inca Kola, it´s like a Spanish version of creme soda.  The craziest thing I´ve seen so far is the Traffic, and the dogs.  They are everywhere!  And they all have little personalities and lounge all around the city like the people. Ok, now to talk about day1 of tracking!  Last Saturday they took all us missionaries about 15 minutes into Peru, and each companionship was assigned to a teacher or two and our job was to go and visit some inactive member´s houses.    The first house was with an older scruffy man, and my companion and the teachers did most of the speaking because I did not understand a word he said.  Well, I got pieces throughout, but not enough to understand what he was saying (Spanish spoken between missionaries is much slower and simpler, much easier to understand, but the real world is as tough as an old steak!)   The second house was better, I could understand about 60% of what was said. The inactive member was a 20 year old sister who was studying psychology in school and said she didn´t have time to go to church.  Elder Farinango and I got to teach her about the importance of attending church, shared a couple scriptures, and I testified that if she would attend church that God would be able to open up a way for her to attend as still have time to do what she needed to that day. I couldn´t understand clearly, but I´m pretty sure she agreed to come. We visited a couple more houses, walked around the city  (the whole ordeal took about 4.5 hours without bus time) and I still was having trouble understanding the language depending on the person.  But it was a fantastic experience to learn how the city works, how the people are, and breaking the ice. All in all, it was well worth it. And today we got to go to the Temple and do endowments for people (for those who don´t know what those are, ask Claudia because I don´t think I have enough time to explain it in this letter) and it was wonderful.  It´s really cool how no matter how foreign you go, the promises and ordinances in the temple are  the same throughout the world. So, I´m gonna start wrapping up, I´ll attach some more photos, and it also turns last week the president of this MTC had to fly to the USA to a hospital because of a problem in his kidneys or gall bladder, but we hear he´s doing better.  And last note:   President Oaks from the quorem of the 12 apostles is coming HERE  for OUR DEVOTIONAL  NEXT WEDNESDAY!!!!   YEAAHH!!!!  The church is true, I love you guys, keep the commandments, and I still keep you all in my prayers.     
  ¡nos vemos!          -Elder Sanders