Wednesday, November 28, 2007

The Perils of Pampering

From Elder Paul Freeman, dated November 28, 2007

Dear Mom,

It's been a really good week. We haven't been able to teach as much, because they're making us scrub down the old apartment. It's seems like every other day the APs are calling us with more stuff we're supposed to do. The new apartment is pretty cool. We share it with two other Elders and they're pretty cool. Today is one of their birthdays and we're going to have a party. Thanksgiving was the best. Brother D--- fried the turkeys and Sister D--- made crab, shrimp, and salmon along with breadfruit. It was pretty amazing. They had the Samoan equivalent of a Turkey Bowl which means playing every other sport but football; volleyball, basketball, and rugby. It also lasted from 7 in the morning until probably 8 at night.

Sorry I haven't gotten those pictures to you yet. The computers here don't want to cooperate. And i wish I could put more into this letter but yesterday I started getting sick and it hasn't gotten any better. I think it's from eating to much. I've got a cold or flu or something coming on, but I'm convinced I'd be a lot healthier if I ate better. They feed us a lot over here to, but the difference is were in a car all day and my pants are getting tight. I'm making an effort to exercise and eat healthier. Thing's will be turned around by next week and I'll have more exciting stuff to write about.

Thanks for all your letters and support. The emails are all great and I really enjoy reading them. More pictures would be cool too, and when you send them if you could shrink em down a bit it will be easier to load and the screen won't be filled with A---'s nose. Until next time.


Elder Freeman

Ready for Finest Hour

From Elder Andrushka Dated October 24, 2007

Dear Mom & Dad and Family,

Well it’s my last day in America. I have loved the MTC. I am so exited to go out and preach and teach the people about our Savior. My testimony has grown a lot just in the little time I have been here. I can’t believe it has been 2 months now.

Not much happened this week. We said lots of goodbyes to our district. Half of us in the district were going to Chili and they left 2 days before.

Oh, I got an email that I only want my family to write to me on. No friends.

It sounds like everything is going well at home. Did Nick move into his home? Does he have an address? Mom, I also need email addresses of Eric and Leanne if you wouldn’t mind it.

Well the journey begins tomorrow at 5 a.m. I am super excited and at the same time nervous. My Spanish is OK. I can understand grammar a lot but not too many words. I can teach the first lesson and the second.

I had a Spanish moment the other day. I was studying my English scriptures and I was writing things in the margins. I looked at them and they were Spanish words.

Well I love every second here. I love how much each day you grow and learn. I love my Savior. He is the foundation of my life. D&C 31:3

The time has come to go out and preach. My fav quote, well one of them given in a fireside, “To every man there comes in his life time that special moment when he is figuratively tapped on the shoulder and offered the chance to do a special thing unique to him and fitted to his talent. What a tragedy if that moment finds him unprepared or unqualified for the work which would be his finest hour.” Winston Churchhill

I am ready for my finest hour. Armed with the Holy Ghost and a testimony of my Savior. To go out and change peoples lives. Building them a better foundation.

Andy Pearce

The Gift of Tongues

From: Elder Andrushka Dated November 12, 2007

Dear family

Well I have the Spanish down a little more. I can mostly understand all the gospel words . But to talk about just life things I don’t understand anything really.

I went on splits this week with a Toño Mario and another person. My companion wanted me to go out and to do tracting by myself so I would talk a lot more. It was a scary experience because I don’t have enough Spanish to do that but I had faith. We also were supposed to go and visit a recent convert. On the way to their house I started to pray and ask the Lord to help me with my Spanish. Help me find people to teach. As we were walking a man asked me what our church was about. To my surprise I understood him and while we were walking I taught him about prophets, why we need them and that we have a prophet here on earth. I also got his address and he wanted to learn more. Here you ask people for their address but missionaries don’t really understand the addresses so you just really memorize where they live. The Lord really answers prayers. He really loves every single one of us.

The day was hard I talked to 13 people which 7 of them invited me in to teach. Four of them wanted to learn more and the others didn’t care. It was a huge learning and humbling experience how much more I need to learn out here to help people. We have 25 or so investigators right now so we aren’t doing a whole lot of tracting. The church out here has many members but only about 60 or so are strong members. On Sunday we had a chance to visit a family that are all members. The mom has been in the church for 8 years. We shared a lesson about enduring to the end. I felt a really strong spirit from the family. I love experiences like this. The times like this I feel so blessed to be out here serving. The Lord blesses you so much as you serve and pour out your soul to the people. It’s at times hard to do this work not knowing the language and everything. But it reminds me (that) to walk in the Saviors steps is not easy. (It) also reminds me of the talk that we had in the MTC about (how) salvation is not cheap and as missionaries we are out here trying to save souls. How Jesus Christ paid the greatest price for us. (Why) should we think salvation is cheap? I am so thankful to be out here on my mission, (and) to have the spirit with me, to feel His love when I work hard. To be learning so much each day. I am thankful for the struggles I have out here.

How’s Amy doing being home once again? The time really flies. Thanks for all of your support.

I'm Here!

From: Elder Andrushka Dated October 27, 2007

HI Mom,

I am in Nicaragua all safe. Its different here. I love it though. I don't have much time but I will write more on Monday.

I love you. Oh my companions name is Elder F***** Well I hope all is well at home. Oh he doesn't speak much English. Its fun it helps me alot.

Andrushka Pearce

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Baptism's delayed

From Elder Andrushka Dated November 26, 2007

It has been a really emotional week. It all started out with Jose Gonzales changing his baptizm date and Elga said she didn't want to be baptized. All this is not easy on your heart. You come to love this people with all your heart. You want them to have the same vision in life that you have. Well to sum up this week, we taught many lessons. We restored the desire for Elga to be baptized Dec 1. I hope all goes well. Jose Gonzales also changed his date to Dec 1. So this week should be good.

My Spanish is really coming along nicely. Not as fast as I wish but I am very thankful for how fast I am picking it up. In trying weeks like this you come to learn a lot. Your faith gets tested and gets stronger and stronger. You start thinking about really how many blessings you have in your life. I am truly greatful for my family for the opportunity I have to live in Utah. To have the foundation that I have to be taught of such goodly parents.

This week we had a conference with President Fratz and he changed many things and set many new goals. The new goal is to baptize 1000 (is this a typo or do they really expect to baptize 1000 people?) people this month. It has come to change a lot of things and not easy. I have faith that this work is Gods work. He is looking over his people right now and carrying out the work. (This computer is realy slow so I am having a really hard time writing this letter. I will type a letter and a minute later I will see it.)

I am so grateful for all the hard times I have had in my life. I have come to realize it has formed me into more of a person I want to be. Many times in life we don't see or understand the wisdom of our Father in Heaven, that he really knows what we need. What kind of trials we need to go through shaping us into a master piece. As always I have so much to learn but what an opportunity I have right now. I love every moment of being here.

Thank you so much for all that wrote and emailed to me. I miss and love all of you. I had a really weird experience the other day. I was so caught up in thinking of the investigators I totally forgot that I was turning 20 years old in two weeks. That it was almost December.

Teaching with the spirit and losing English

From Elder Andrushka dated November 19, 2007

Dear Mommy, Daddy

Well its going really well my Spanish is just coming along. I have come to a point I can translate so, so English EFY songs for other elders. I am so blessed. Every day I get more and more blessings from my Father in Heaven. I have learned so much about the love my Father in Heaven has for me. I realized that on your mission you have bad times and once in awhile you just find that person that is ready to partake of the gospel. That's the times you live out here for.

We have been working with just the person like that. His name is Jose Gonzales. He has 63 years. We first talked to him and he said, "I am Catholic". He nicely invited us in and let us teach him. We taught him about the gospel of Jesus Christ and he really felt the spirit. We asked him to pray about it. The next appointment we came back and you can tell he got a answer to his question. He was really nice and wanted to know more. We taught him about the restoration and he felt ok about it but not strong. He asked us about the Word of Wisdom. He has been drinking coffee but not much. We didn't even ask him to stop and he told us he will not drink more.

The next appt. we watched the Jesus Christ video and then the Joseph Smith the next appt. The lesson that really felt the spirit was the plan of salvation. You could just feel the Spirit open his eyes and hope come in his life. You could just feel that the spirit was teaching and not me or my companion. The lesson went well and at the end we were leaving he said "I learned so much today". We told him to ponder about it all and if he had questions we would love to answer. Those are the days that you live out here for. To feel that spirit, to help a Son of God and see his eyes opened and realize the purpose of this life.

He has been to church twice he can't see the hymns really good but we are teaching him to sing. He can't read the hymns so he just trys to follow us in church. The next time we came back we visited with him and his family. They are starting to be more receptive. They invited us for Christmas dinner. We are hoping to teach the whole family little by little. But the rest of the family is Baptist so its much harder. My companion started and asked him a question. It was do you think its possible to rob God? He said "You are talking about tithing. Yes I want to start paying". The next time to church he had on a white shirt and nice dress pants. People here are not asked to wear nice clothes. They dont have much. He is a golden investigator. I hope all goes well. He has a bap. date Nov.24, 2007. I am truly grateful to be a missionary. I feal his love so much. Being a missionary is not easy but investigatores like him remind you why you are working so hard.

I was asked to bear my testimony in English the other day and I was having the hardest time remembering the words. My comp will tell me a word in Spanish and Ii cant remember it in English sometimes.

We have another golden investigator Elga and her son Victor. Her story is a little much longer so I will write the short version of it. She was a catholic studying to be a teacher, not sure what they are called. But she had a dream in witch she was told to follow her son Victor, he is about 10 right now. He has been going to the Mormon Church every week. He loves it. He has many friends there. He has a testimony and wants to be baptized. We have taught her all the lessons and working with her doubts. But she has many being her whole family is Catholic and her friends and studying in school to be catholic. She understands all. She knows more than the members. We have taught about temples, prophets, watched videos about mucho things. This week we decided to give it all. She doesn't want Vvictor to get baptized without her. The biggest prob she doesn't have a testimony of Joseph Smith. We asked her to pray about it she says, "I feel good and I feel joy". She wants a better reply. So we taught her faith grows if we give it a chance. After helping her understand there is one church and because Joseph Smith was called by Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, this is the only church here on earth that has the keys to act in the name of Jesus Christ. She is 38 years old and she knows alot. She is ready to be baptized the only prob she has the members dont really talk to her much so we will see what we can do about that.

Everything is well in Nicaragua. I have had many wonderful experiences. My stomach really hurts right now but thats ok. Thats life down here. I feel so blessed to be on my mission. Ifeel so blessed about my family and the opportunity I have had to learn so much. The opportunity to be on my mission right now bearing witness of Jesus Christ. Having the Holy Ghost speak through me. I love every second of it. The time is flying. This week I will have 3 months on my mission. THe time really is flying.

Mom do you know the email for BJ? I would love to write him an email 'cause letters don't really work or they take 6 weeks or more.

I am truly sorry of my English. It's going to get a lot worse. My thoughts are slowly switching to Spanish. I hope all is well at home. I would love to hear more from my loved ones. I love you all so so much! Don't you miss me?

Querido Elder Pearce