Monday, January 27, 2014

La tierra de doble fe

Mom I am sorry, I do not have many photos this week.  So my town is called "the land of double faith" because it is well know to have many people here who practice witchcraft.  My new companion is funny, but is superstitious about many things here.

Yesterday we went to the bishops house to eat lunch.  Our bishop is the best, I council with him so much about what we must do for the ward.  But when we were eating at his house I found a caterpillar in the middle of my spoon.  I knew that I have been in Peru for a while because I just pushed it to the side and kept eating.  I can't imagine what mom would have done.

I have yet to get my birthday package, but it is all good.  My companion and I are starting to click now.  He loves music and he wants to learn English.  So we talk about music a lot and he tries to sing songs in English and it is the funniest thing.  He loves to read and he has also talked about learning Italian.

I don't have many funny stories this week, its just been really hot here and there is a huge carnival in town.  

Elder Perryman

Monday, January 20, 2014

Levántate Elder Lazaro

Wow!  This week has been crazy.  There has been so much to do.  For my birthday I went to the pension of the other missionaries.  Their pension, Hermana Irma, is the best!  She bought me a cake and everything.  I got egged on the head which is a tradition here in Peru.  I also got my face smashed in the cake which is another tradition here.  But I have gotten to the point where all the days basically feel the same because I just want to get out and teach.  Our ward has so much potential and I feel like I need to do all I can to help them.

My new companion is good.  His name is Elder Lazaro which is the English equivalent of Lazarus, so everyone jokes about his name.  He is super funny, but childish.  This is his third change in the mission and he had an emergency change with his trainer so he needs to review a lot of Preach my Gospel.  But it is nice still being with a Latino.  I feel more accustomed speaking in Spanish now.

I love my ward and I would love to stay here for another 3 changes, but I will go wherever the Lord needs me.  We found so many new people who can progress in the gospel.  This Sunday we had 7 investigators in the chapel.  It is amazing how much the members can help.  I really never feel like I am working.  I am just reading things that I enjoy (I love scripture study now), visiting families who want to learn of Christ, and helping the Bishop with whatever he needs to get done while doing a bit of service when needed.

I love this work.  I know it is true and I will keep pressing on until He says it is finished.  I am meant to be in Peru.  Everyday I feel blessed to be serving here.

Elder Perryman

Monday, January 13, 2014

Adiós Carranza!

So this was the fastest change on my mission.  I feel like I just started in my new area and Elder Carranza is already leaving.  I am so blessed with all the companions I have had so far, I hope that the Lord will continue to bless me.  Elder Carranza finished his mission strong; we worked hard and we played hard.  He had such a real love for the people; it inspired me.  I honestly didn't feel like we worked this week (don't worry we worked), but it felt like we just had fun everyday.  I don't know how to explain it, but I love serving the people in this area.

I had a lot of crazy experiences this week too.  I know my work is real; I can feel it in every lesson.  During a work visit I taught a family with Elder Riddle.  The spirit was so strong that when he started to say the closing prayer we both started crying.  I love being able to help families out and feel the spirit.  Though sometimes it is difficult to teach families because in many many cases they are single mother homes.  It is sad to see, but emphasizes the importance of teaching the importance of families.

Luigi was baptized this week!!!  He is my favorite.  I have seen such a change in their family.  His mom, Helen, is so great, but has a lot of difficulties.  Yesterday in Sunday school we were talking about reasons to fast and she said "I want to fast for my husband, so that one day he will accept this gospel."  Elder Carranza and I were just sitting in the back of the class with our hands in the air when she said that.  I hope that all of her family will be able to make it to the temple one day.

Sadly this week wasn't perfect.  During the baptism of Luigi, Elder Carranza left all of his stuff in the bathroom to change.  When he came back his wallet was not there.  He was mad, but said that he was more upset that someone stole it while in the church.  But he was cool and was glad we focused more on the work than anything else.

I am really just loving life right now.  I feel so blessed to be here in Peru.  I love seeing the change the restored gospel can have in families, especially my own.

Elder Perryman

Monday, January 6, 2014

Feliz año Nuevo!!!

Wow!  The time is starting to fly.  It is already 2014!  I will be 20 in a matter of days!  And there is still so much to be done.

New Years' was great.  We bunkered down with some other missionaries and celebrated in the house of the pension.  New Years' is crazy here.  Everyone drinks from New Years' Eve (in the morning) until the 2nd (or 3rd) of January.  It would have been impossible to sleep in our room because they set up a huge speaker system in the street and blared music for two days straight.  Luckily the pension of the other missionaries has extra beds.  We were given permission to be out in the streets until 11pm and after that I wouldn't want to be away from a members home.  This is one of their biggest holidays here.  As a tradition people make human sized dolls and burn them in the middle of the street and set off a ton of fireworks.  Basically the streets were on fire.

Despite the fiestas we actually had a pretty good week.  I love working hard, I don know why but it brings me so much joy and when we are stuck in our room for holidays I get antsy.  I have a picture of Luigi and us doing service in his house.  I love this kid and his whole family.  His mom is super nice and wants to be baptized too, but she can't because of her blog.  We had 6 investigators in the chapel and our agendas are filled with appointments.  I have seen how much the members help us here.  It so true that the work of salvation only happens when the missionaries and members work in unity.

It has been fun with Elder Carranza and now I am looking forward as to what lies ahead.  Elder Carranza says that I am going to train, but I think he is joking, because I still feel so new  [Elder Carranza goes home from his mission next week and James will get a new companion].

Elder Perryman


Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Feliz Año Nuevo

Happy New Year!!  So for new year our days have been really weird.  We worked so hard Monday (normally our P-day) and our Zone meeting also got pushed back.  Also the hours of P-day are weird.  I miss having a normal day-to-day schedule where the weeks are the same.

So I have like a thousand pictures and even more stories from the past couple weeks.  Also I feel like I haven't emailed in forever.  The spirit of Christmas was strong here, even though it didn't feel like the traditional Christmas.

We did a lot of service and because it was hard to go out and teach in these times.  During one of our service opportunities a neighbor came over and talked with my companion and wanted us to visit her home.  It is so great to see how people want the missionaries in their home when they see us do good.

Though many people had problems for Christmas and New Year's.  Here the two holidays are big times for drinking, this is why our P-day is today and we have a [Zone] meeting tomorrow.  It was sad to enter houses and to have people say that because of alcohol their Christmas was ruined.  But there is always more joy than gloom.  One of the houses we went to an investigator gave us a doll to give away for Christmas.  We knew exactly who to give it to.  It was just something small but the light in the eyes of this little girl was something special when we gave it to her.  It makes me so sad to see many children in need, I always wish I could do more.

I love my mission.  I really am starting to realize it is the best thing I have done with my life.  This holiday time was weird for me because even though I loved Skyping my family and everything we did for P-day, I didn't feel completely full of joy.  I only starting feeling that constant joy again when I went back to serving.  I love when I can just visit families and talk of Christ.  There is no greater joy in the world.

I will send more pictures because I have a bunch, but the ones in this email are all of our New Years' Eve afternoon as a Zone.

Te Amo
Elder Perryman