Thursday, August 21, 2014


Hola Familia,

Well I finally made it to Arequipa. The city is amazing and I know that this is where I am supposed to be. I really love everything about it so far. The flight was really short and then we went around the city a little while to see everything.

My companion’s name is Elder Snyder and he is from Ohio. He has been on his mission for 23 months so I will only have him as a trainer for 6 weeks instead of 12, which will be interesting. He is really good at speaking Spanish and is teaching me a ton. He is a lot like me and we get along really well. This week has been rough in the sense of trying to speak Spanish, but I know that the Lord will help me. We live in a tiny room in a weird complex. We sleep in bunk beds and share a bathroom with someone we have yet to meet. The water pressure is awful.  The heater on the showerhead works pretty well but it is nothing like the states.

The food here is amazing. I have finally got diarrhea ha ha. We have a pesionista that cooks all three meals for us, which is really nice. It was my companion’s birthday on Tuesday so we have eaten a lot of cake, which is so good.

The area that I am in is the Hunter Arequipa Daniel Alcides Carrion barrio (neighborhood). The days have been flying by and I want them to slow down. It is a very hilly area and walking is pretty much hiking everywhere ha ha. Which is nice but hard work. We are up in the mountains kind of. It is very dirty but nicer then Lima. I am so grateful to live in the states. It is insane to see how some people live. But they are so happy and so nice and we always get food and soda when we teach the familias (families). I definitely view the world different now.

We are both brand new to this area and the missionaries before us did not do a good job. So we have been working hard to contact and get used to all the people. We did have 8 people come to church this week, which is great for the area. We have a baptism set up for the 13 of September, for Quterio and Junio. They are older and need to get married but they don’t have enough money to get married. Then we have been teaching a family which will most likely get baptized, Angelica, Milagros and Guerrimo, and Pablo. That is one thing, remembering names is so hard and pronunciation is near impossible. We have also been teaching Gonzolo, he is 20 and really interested. The people are more than willing to hear our message about the truth. I can’t say much but I know that the spirit talks through me to the people. I just wish I could say exactly what I want to say when I want to say it. We have been teaching a lot of less active members also.  We are working 100% of the time, which keeps my mind busy.

Just know that I am doing great and am loving being out in the field. Thank you guys for everything and the spirit you bring is amazing. I miss you but it is so worth it. I still pray for you everyday. Have fun this next week can’t wait to hear about the deer hunt.

I love you all and thanks for everything,

Elder Cooley

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