Tuesday, August 27, 2013

I'm alive!!

So I am feeling so much better this week.  From Saturday night to Wednesday morning I was out of it last week.  It turns out I had a really bad fever which peaked at 103F, and a stomach infection.  Basically being sick on the mission is no fun because all I wanted to do was serve but I couldn't do anything.  I always had this weird experience of completely forgetting Spanish when my fever was bad.  Basically I have never been so grateful to be healthy.  God gives us obstacles so that we can appreciate our everyday blessings.

On Wednesday we had our zone conference.  I got all of my letters!! It was seriously like Christmas.  Some other the other Gringos also got letters (one Elder had his family send him taco bell hot sauce).  I felt so great reading them on the Cambi back to Pueblo Nuevo.  I am especially grateful for all that Becca wrote, it really boosted my spirits.  In the zone conference one of the Elders had me stand up and talk about how to find investigators and fellowship investigators with baptismal dates.  I was so nervous because even though I can understand everything pretty well, I am not super confident about my speaking.  I got up and was surprised how easily the Spanish came to me, the gift of tongues is something so real.  When I sat down one of the Latino missionaries said my Spanish was perfect (He was just being nice) but I know I can do anything through God, who strengthens me.  I just want to emphasize, that this wonderful work would not be possible without Heavenly Father assisting every missionary everyday.

I'm starting to love the culture here.  The other day we went on a run through the chacras (the farms here) and it was funny to see people give me looks like I was just a little out of place.  I am legit in a farming town, everyone works on the chacras.  The other day we were eating rooster at a members "house" and a rooster started running through my legs.  The member, Hno Huaman, told me that I was eating his brother.  They had so many animals, including guinea pig, and invited us to come back for cuy (guinea pig).  In Peru there are also street carts with meat or bread.  They do not mess around in the bakery department.  Also there is a dessert here called masamora, which every Peruvian loves.  It is this purple goop stuff that just looks like a booger, I am starting to get used to it.  Also they have crackers here which are like Ritz but they are called Kraps.

Every addresses each other by there first name, por ejemplo our land lord (Segundo Garrido) we just call Hermano Segundo.  I love this because I know that this is the same way Joseph Smith addressed everyone.  When you sneeze here instead of saying bless you people will say "salud" or health.  And if you sneeze twice people say "amor" (love) and "dinero" (money) for a third time.  My companion always sneezes twice and then fakes a third sneeze because he wants to be blessed with dinero.  My companion is great and we are starting to strengthen our relationship as I become more acquainted with the language.  Latinos look at rules a bit differently then we do in the states.  They are more "guidelines" here, but I follow all the rules that the mission president and the white handbook say.  Though from what I have heard/seen we have a very relaxed mission in terms of rules, which is the opposite of Sam's mission.

I have found that teaching by the Spirit is way more effective than teaching with a silver tongue.  The Spirit can pierce the heart of any man who is humble.  As I become more confident with teaching I try really hard to feel the spirit in every lesson.  One of our investigators, Marco, is about 20 and has a baptismal date in setiembre.  He is super humble and I love teaching him because he is so patient if I mess up a word or conjugation.  I actually love teaching youth way more, because they seem more willing to change then people more set in there ways.  Though we do have one investigator, Hno Jorge, who I love.  He is about 40 and he has such a strong testimony.  He attends church regularly and prays often.  The one obstacle that he has is that he needs a divorce and then needs to get married to his current partner.  We have a lot of investigators and recent converts we meet with everyday.  I love being in the homes of those we teach, there is just something about a home (no matter how humble it is) that brings the Spirit.

Te Amo
Elder Perryman

Monday, August 19, 2013

Estoy enfermo

Do not worry (I'm talking to you mom), but I am sick this week.  Apparently I am 1 of the 30 missionaries in my group that are sick.  Saturday night when we got to our room I felt super cold, which doesn't happen in Peru.  On Sunday I gave a talk and when I sat down I felt super bad.  I had a fever of 38.5C, I don't know what that means because its not in Fahrenheit.  Luckily my Pinchinista has been looking after me the past couple days.  Being sick on the mission is not fun, because I just want to go out and serve and learn the language.  I guess this is Gods way of slowing me down a bit. Anyway I am feeling much better now.

We have had a great week in terms of lessons with our investigators.  I feel way more confident with the language.  I have started to love teaching about the Restoration.  When I tell people that God loves us so He sends us prophets or when I talk about Joseph Smith I can feel power behind my words.  I know it is the truth that we have a prophet on the earth today, and that knowledge brings me so much joy.  The message of the restoration comforts my soul and makes so much sense to my mind.

We also had a multi-zone conference this week.  I finally got my interview with President Risso, and I was right, he doesn't speak English.  Also I saw Elder Coons, my CCM companion, there.  We talked for a good while and I asked him about his area.  He said that he bathes with a bucket, which makes me extremely happy that I have a shower.  President Risso got all the missionaries who traveled to Chiclayo KFC.  I had forgotten how much I love fried chicken.

A lot of other things have happened this week, but my brain is not working super well right now and I can't remember everything.  I hope that I feel better tomorrow so I can go out and teach.  Sorry there are no pictures this week, I have been in bed all day.

Te Amo,
Elder Perryman

Tuesday, August 13, 2013


This week has been so great.  I'm still not fluent, but I know the gift of tongues is so real.  I had a conversation about economics, then about missionary work of course, today in Spanish with an old man and my companion didn't say a thing.  I work so hard to learn this language, and it is only after I strive for a goal that the Lord blesses me.  People I talk to say I have great Spanish for a new missionary, but I want it to be better.  I make vocab cards everyday and when I am done with them I give them to my companion to learn English.  I also read the Book of Mormon in Spanish out-loud every chance I get: between appointments, on the bus, and before I go to bed.  There is so much power in the Book of Mormon, the doctrines inside really can be applied to everything in life.

I just want to take a minute and talk about food.  First of all when I found out that the Spanish have a word for "a party with chicken" (Pollada) I instantly decided Spanish is the best language ever.  I have rice for every meal, except for sometimes breakfast.  There is a sauce here called Tarí, which is spicy, but super good.  My pinchinista is fabulous, everything she cooks is good.  They have a drink here called Kímbo (I am not a huge fan) which they call Mormon coffee.  It tastes just like coffee but it is herbal or something.  They have tamales here that Mom would love and eat everyday.  At one "Noche de Amigos" that we put on we had tamales and chicha morada.  Chicha morada is a Peruvian drink that I am starting to get a taste for.  It is basically the juice of purple corn.  Also I can confidently say I have eaten every part of a chicken.  They eat a lot of chicken here, which I have no problem with.  Also the candy here is super different.  My favorite sweet, which I am now addicted to, is Chokosoda, which is a saltine dipped in chocolate.  Also I have broken my "no drinking pop" rule.  When we go to members homes, or sometimes even when we go out and teach people will bring us glasses of Inca cola, orange pop, or coke (The only 3 drinks they have here besides juice).  The juice here is so good, all the fruit is fresh, and delicious.  Also Peru is apparently know for there avocados, we have them for salads a lot, and they are better then anything in the States.

Now for the weird things section.  I see the weirdest things when teaching/walking on the streets, that to people here, is completely normal.  The other day I saw a man training his rooster for cock fighting by baiting it with another.  During a lesson we were teaching an old couple and the abolito was sick and couldn't leave his hammock.  During the lesson he had to pee, so his wife got up and helped him pee into a bottle, during our lesson (now that's love).  Also women here breast feed everywhere, there is even a statue of it in Chepén.  On Sunday Elder Palacios and I were teaching a class and one of the hermanas just started feeding her kid.  No one else seemed to mind.  The other day was elder Palacios birthday and for his present one of the members smashed a cake in his face,.  The tradition is eggs, but we didn't want that much of a mess.

It took a bit of adjustment, but I love it here.  The people are so faithful.  The lives they live are very humble, and simple.  I like the simplicity.  There are certain blessings here that I wouldn't have at home, like being able to see the stars at night.  I love looking up at the night sky when it is full of stars, because it is proof to me of Heavenly Fathers Love and Power.  There are many people we teach here who are so close to baptism, but need to get divorced, then married to whomever they live with.  This is a very common problem here in Peru.  I love teaching.  I am not always the strongest speaker, but the is nothing better than being in the home of an investigator or recent convert.  I love looking into the eyes of the people here and testifying that they can be with there families forever.

Te Amo
Elder Perryman

Monday, August 5, 2013

I made it!!!

This has officially been the longest week (week and a half)  of my life.  We woke up at 2:30 AM on Tuesday to catch an early morning flight to Chiclayo.  At the airport I grabbed breakfast with Elder Coons and we talked for a bit.  He was such a great companion, and a great man.  I am glad he is in my mission and I know he will be the AP in a matter of months.

When we arrived I was amazed at how small the Chiclayo airport was, it made the Idaho falls airport look massive.  We drove to the mission home and had a little breakfast.  All the missionaries (except for a few from Cajamarca) were there.  We had a brief meeting and met the president and our new companions.  My trainer is Elder Palacio, from Lima.  He is really nice and speaks no English.  No one really talked much with President Risso (no interviews or anything) he just kind of sent us off on our marry way.  We are assigned to work in Pueblo Nuevo, which is an incredibly humble town with wonderful people.  Elder Palacio and I went to the bus station with other missionaries in our zone and waiting for a bus.  Imagine a south American gray hound bus station.  I really needed to use the bathroom but as I walked I noticed that there was no toilet paper, and no seat.  Welcome to Peru (for real this time).  Hna. Batman (a sister in my district, and yes that is her real name) then told me that bathrooms here are not as good as the one in the bus station.  We took an hour and a half bus to Guadalupe, which is the center of our zone.  Then we took a cambi (a little van) to Pueblo Nuevo, and then a moto taxi to our room.  We dropped our stuff off and then Elder Palacios told me that we had work to do.

The next week after this moment was the most humbling time of my life.  I met The branch President, David Garrido and some other members.  We also gave a blessing and I did the anointing.  Everyone here has about 4 or 5 names so blessing can be a tad difficult for gringos.

I do not have time to write about everything that has happened in the past week, and there are already things I don't want to tell mom about.  The first few days I felt so alone, I didn't understand anyone, I was in a new world.  I relied heavenly on prayer.  This was a time where my faith was truly tested, I needed it.  Faith is crucial and this week has made me realize how real God is.  I know that I could not speak the amount of Spanish I can today without the help of God. The gift of tongues is real.  How happiness does not come from the world, but from heave.  I know that as we focus on our families and on Christ we will feel indescribable joy.

I have been setting many goals for myself and each time I accomplish one I feel closer to being a true missionary.  We were challenged on Friday at our Zone meeting to read PME (PMG) entirely by Wednesday.  I finished today and now I am challenging myself to read the whole Book of Mormon out loud in Spanish, in my first 12 weeks.  All things are possible through the Lord, who strengthens me.  Elder Greene, a gringo who has hit the year mark, told me that if I get rid of everything English I will learn Spanish faster.  It is my companions birthday soon so I will give him my English Book of Mormon.  

I have a bunch of random things written in my daily planer, too much for a single email.  But I will share a few things.  One of the members here, Pedro, my be the nicest happiest guy I have met in my life.  He served his mission in Columbia.  When I asked him what Columbia was like he said: "Its like Peru with beautiful women."  Every one drivers motorcycles and they are just called motos here. I have seen everything on a moto from 5 people to a mattress, to 15 feet of rebar.  It shows me how much ingenuity the people here have.  People here also park there motos in there "living rooms"  During language study we were going through vocab and one of the words was "conquer".  Elder Palacios looked at me and said "like, to conquer a woman".  I started laughing and then told him to never use that phrase and instead say "steal her heart".  The people here are so nice.  I cannot explain how gracious they are.  The other day we were walking and a member invited us in to share her birthday cake with her.  The "cake" was basically cornbread.  Also Mom thank you for the glow sticks, the little kids here love them.

I am so glad to be out here serving the Lord.  The people of Peru posses so much faith.  I did not understand how blessed my life was until I came down here.  I pray to God and count my blessings everyday.  There is a man in our ward, who has tremendous faith, who doesn't even have a door.  I cannot imagine thinking of a door as a blessing.  I know that the people here are prepared to here the gospel.  The first days were rough for me, but if they were easy I would have learned nothing.  I continually read the Invictus Poem president K gave me.  I know that God cares about every single one of his children.  It is amazing that even out here I know without a doubt in my mind that God is watching over me.

Te Amo,
Elder Perryman

PS I am sorry if I was scatter brained, a lot has happened this week.  Also these pictures are from the CCM and from when our bus broke down.