Saturday, May 7, 2016

Stake Conference

Hello family,
How is everything going?  Everything is going great here in Peru.  It was a great week and we had a lot of success.

On Monday we went to Sogai Zone, it’s a waterfall.  We rented this big bus to take everybody in the Zone.  The bus couldn’t make it all the way there because the streets were too little so we had to walk a long way.  It was like and hour and a half there and an hour of walking so it was a pretty long day but it was good.  We came back and had a good family home evening lesson that night. 

We had divisions Tuesday I went to this other area in Lauta with Elder Franco from Ecuador.  We were on divisions for that day we went and saw the area and the area is huge so we took a lot of buses.  It was fun we and I learned a lot.  Some teenage members in the ward helped us out and taught with us so overall it was a really good day. 

On Wednesday I went back to my area and started teaching again.  Also I made an apple pie with some members, which turned out really good.  We were able to have a really good lesson with our Pensionista and her dad, Pablo.  We were able to teach him and it was really cool and he’s doing really well.  He is ready to be baptized on the 14th of this month.  I’m super excited.  We went and did divisions again I went with a member and my companion went with another member.  I went and visited this one family and the other family wasn’t there so we went and came back and met up with my companion and had a family home evening and then went and talked with Maurivel.  She’s doing really good and progressing.

We went on divisions again Thursday and it was really fun.  We were able to teach a bunch of people and help out.  It was really cool.  

Friday was a really busy day, we had a bunch of lessons that didn’t all work out how we wanted them to but it was really good anyways.  I went with another member went to Carlos Manone’s birthday party.  He was a less active that we rescued.  It was cool to see how much support his wife and family have to help him come back and be active in the church and it turned out to be a good night.  

Saturday morning I went and got my hair cut from Pablo an 84 year old.  He cut my hair and it was a little sketchy at first because he was shaking while he was cutting but it turned out really good.  And it looks good so I’m all right with it.  Then we had our Stake Conference  that night and it was really cool.  We talked a lot about the family, the Sabbath day (Spanish version), the importance of teaching your family in the home and what it can do to help everybody out.  Super happy for that and for the many blessings I’ve seen in my life and for the people that have helped me personally become better.  After we went with a member to eat some tacos and they were actually pretty good.  It was fun to go talk with him and his family. It was fun to talk to see how they are doing and how everything is going.

On Sunday we finished the conference, we had the priesthood session in the morning and then we had the general session.  We went and got Pablo and Haiti and they both came to the conference.  There were some awesome messages that I really liked and it’s so important to know what we need to do better.  It talked about being proactive not reactive and getting a bigger testimony.  A lot of times in life we just wait for things to happen but we should go out and make things happen because if not we are never going to become successful in our faith.  Faith is an action.  If we have faith we are going to do something and we will go out and make our lives better.  If we don’t have faith we are going wait until our lives become better which they won’t so we need to go out and do something to become better.  Overall it was a super good week.  I’m happy and the Zone is doing well.  We had a really cool lesson last night with Marivel and Ronald.  So Marivel is not a member and her husband is. He is returned missionary and they have been married for about a year and have a kid on the way so we are seeing if we can help her get baptized.  We talked about the family and how families are so important it’s why we are here to have eternal families (Spanish version) We aren’t here to just have fun and have a family for our mortal life; it’s to have a family forever.  Families are so important we need to have a bigger picture and focus on what we can do for families. We went and talked to Haiti to see how she’s doing.  She’s ready for an interview and she didn’t have any questions.  It’s going great and everything is going super good in the area.  I’m super excited, working hard and figuring out everything we need to do.  We need to make our lives better each and everyday.  Become who we want to become and if we aren’t doing that we need to change things.  But overall it’s going great.  All right family I love you so much and hope you have a great week.  I can’t wait to talk to you on Skype.


Elder Cooley

Corn, Corn, and more Corn!

Hello family,
How are you doing?  How’s everything going?  Time is flying by.  Alright, so this week was great.  We have seen some awesome miracles.

So on P-day, Monday, we visited some of my companion’s converts.  We did that for a little while and went and bought some more protein.  After we came back and had some pretty awesome family home evenings.  I went with a member and my companion went with another member.  It was super cool to go see what we could do.  We taught this less active family.  We taught about doing the small little things and how if we just read, pray, and go to church then we will see a lot of miracles (Spanish version) in our lives.  That was really cool and we ate some cake, of course! 

We had a sweet day on Tuesday.  We did divisions again.  My companion went with one member and I went with another member.  I was able to give this family some blessings because they are struggling.  I was able to help them and use my priesthood (Spanish version) to bless them.

On Wednesday we had divisions.  In the morning we had a service project.  We went to this guy’s field and helped him pick corn for 3 or 4 hours.  It was super hot and we picked a lot of corn.  That was a fun activity and then we went on division with Elder Arouho.  He came with me to my area.  We went and started visiting people.  We had a really cool family home evening that night.  I made some lemon bars and yeah it was super cool.  Overall it was a really good night.  It was fun being out with other Elders to see what they are like and what I can do better as a missionary.  

We had emergency changes for some Elders in our Zone so we helped do that Thursday morning.  And then we came back and had some cool lessons. One that was really cool was with a family, who has a son on a mission.  She is a recent convert and her daughter is not a member.  We taught them and made some brownies in a mug for 2 minutes in the microwave, which is really cool.  So hopefully she can feel better and come to church. 

On Friday we had a really good day in the morning.  We had an awesome reference from a Ward that is pretty close to us.  They called and gave us a reference of a 16 year old girl.  Her name is Hadie and we went and visited her and in two weeks she is going to get baptized.  She is super excited.  She knows a lot and in three weeks we have our Pensionita’s dad.  She has been sending missionaries to him for 5 or more years.  Then she sent and yeah he is going to get baptized in three weeks.  I’m super excited.  I also went to do a baptism interview.  I went with one guy in our ward, named is Luecho, and my companion stayed in our area with another member.  He wasn’t there so we went and ate some really good hamburgers in this little van.  That was a fun experience with him. 

Saturday morning we went to a baptism and then we went and taught the rest of the day.  It turned out to be a really good day with a bunch of lessons. 

We had our two investigators come to church, Pableo and Haddie, on Sunday.  They are doing well.  After church we went and visited some less active members.  Some returned missionaries that are less active, it is just sad, but we want to help them become active.  So that was about it for this week. 

Everything is going good.  I’m enjoying life, enjoying the mission, and my companion and I are getting along really well.  Today we are going to go to this waterfall as a Zone, which will be fun.  I don’t know I’m super excited.   I’m glad to be here especially on a mission.  I know that I came back for a reason.  

Love you so much,

Elder Cooley

Monday, April 18, 2016

Plan of Salvation

Hello family,

Everything is going well.  Another week down!  Wow it is crazy how fast time is going by.  I am halfway though the transfer with my companion Elder Agine.  It is going awesome; we are having a lot of success and fun.  This week was an interesting week, a lot of weird things happened by it was good. 

Monday was a good day.  So on Monday we went to my old area in Hunter and ate with a family there.  It was really cool.  We hung out with the missionaries there for a little bit.  Then we went back to our area to get ready for family home evenings (Spanish version) that night.  So we went on divisions and I went with one member and my companion went with another member.  It was really cool we visited with this family and we talked about forgiveness (Spanish version) and how forgiveness is essential to be happy.  The Vega family is a really awesome family and you can tell that they are happy. 

On Tuesday we had a Zone Conference so that is when my companion and I do a conference with the Zone on the things that we learn and experiences that we had.  It was cool and it went well and we got to see a lot of Elders.  We came back and ate lunch.  Then we had a meeting with the Stake President and Mission President and talked to them to see how we are doing and what we can do better. 

Wednesday was the longest day of my entire life.  I went with an Elder that is having some troubles on his mission.  He is not doing too hot and doesn’t want to be in Peru.  So my companion went with his companion and he came to my area with me.  So it was a very long day.  He didn’t really want to be with me.  We got to teach a lot of lessons.  It was interesting to be able to get to know people and see what they do.  We have a lot of success. We had a really cool lesson.  So my Pensionista’s dad is not a member, his name is Pablo.  We went and taught him for the first time and it was a really spiritual lesson.  He is 84 and his wife passed away a year ago.  We were sitting there and my Pensionista started crying because she knows that they need to be sealed to be an eternal family (Spanish version).  So we taught him and he is open and ready to listen to us so that he can be sealed in the temple with his wife and live with her forever.  That is why we are here on earth to make eternal families.  Then we ended divisions and my companion came back.

On Thursday we had a really awesome lesson with some less actives.  They haven’t gone to church in 10 years but we went and talked to them and they are ready to go.  We will see where that goes.  It was really cool.

On Friday we went up to Los Olivos and taught the family.  It was amazing and they made pasta tardine, it is like a noodle casserole thing.  It is really good.  After eating we came back and ate another lunch so we ate two lunches that day haha.  We had a really cool lesson with some members that night.  It was a hard night and there wasn’t a lot of people but it was good.

Saturday we helped a kid on a mission who is in the Ward that we are in and is going on a mission in like three weeks.  Here in Peru when you don’t have money you do a thing called a pollata.  You sell a bunch of tickets and you make a bunch of fried chicken.  So it is like a BBQ thing but it is a little more expensive because it is about helping the kid.  We helped him.  They sold a ton of chicken, which was cool.  We came back and started our fast, which was also cool.  I love fasting.  We had an awesome lesson with a lady named Julia.  She was a contact that we had.  We went and started talking to her and we found out that her son died.  We were able to share about the plan of salvation and that she can live with her son again and that he is in the spirit world.

Sunday was good we had church.  There was a bunch of people at church and it was fast and testimony meeting.  After I went with a member on divisions named Carlos and he is a member that was inactive and we helped him get rescued.  My companion went with another member.  It was really cool we got to visit some families and it was fun

Everything is going great.  I am happy.  I got bit by a dog this morning walking back from the gym while walking by this car and the dog came out of nowhere and just bit me in the ankle.  Other that that it was good.

This week should be good we have a lot of lessons planned and people to visit, which I am excited about.

Have a great week,
See you
Elder Cooley

2 More Months!

Hola familia,

I will start of will telling you why I came on my mission.  I have been thinking about it a lot this week.  The things that happened when I got sick, when I went home and why I came back out again on my mission to finish the last 6 months when I could have just stopped and finished.  I came on the mission initially because I knew that it is what I needed to do.  I knew that from what has happened in my life and the person that I was and what the gospel did for me to make me who I am now.  I owe my life to this gospel.  I owe everything to the atonement of Jesus Christ (Spanish version), for him suffering for my sins (Spanish version) and the mistakes that I have made so often and all the hard times that I had.  I am not perfect.  It was a hard couple of years but through the repentance (Spanish version) process I know that people can become clean again.  I know that and that it why I am out here.  I got my testimony of this gospel though repentance and through changing my life by the atonement of Jesus Christ.  That is why I am out here.  I love this gospel and I love sharing it with people.  I love how happy it has made me.  I know that it makes anybody that wants to live it happy.  I work hard so that I can pay the debt that I have to him.

Yea so this week was an awesome week; we had a bunch of success and fun.  Elder Agine and I are doing great and getting along well.  We are teaching a ton and working really hard.  He pushes me a ton.  It is really fun.  I love being with him.  I love the area and we are working hard to improve the area and a little by little it will get keep getting better.  It is just like life a little by little and you will become better if you keep working hard. 

So this week was hard.  We had two days where we didn’t teach anybody.  We went with members but we just couldn’t find anybody and it was just a hard two days.  But the other days of the week we found a ton of people and families, which was awesome.  We were also able to put a baptismal date on John Gonzales, the 15th of May.  We had a bunch of cool lessons this week.

We did a really cool service project.  We went with some other Elders to the top of a hill and moved some dirt and helped this lady clean some stuff in her house.  So we were coming down in a bus.  We got off the bus and were walking to get back to our area to change and somebody whistles at us so we turn around and it is this little old lady with her little food stand.  So we go back and its like ten in the morning.  She asked how we were doing and who we were, we said that we were missionaries but in our street clothes because we were just doing service.  She told us to sit down and she gave us breakfast: some juice and a whole bunch of bread to take with us.  It was super nice of her and very random.  We saw what charity (Spanish version) was and the real meaning of giving.  I know that she doesn’t have much and she works so hard but she was so willing and it really impacted me.

After that we had our leadership council.  That is where all the Zone Leaders, Mission President, Assistants and the Sister Leaders get together and talk about the things that we need to do better in the mission, things that we need to change, and things that need to get done.  It was really cool.  It happened Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

The gospel is super cool because you can teach people and see the hope from the gospel change them, make them better, and make them want to become more like Christ.  It makes them start in the way to become perfect.  Everybody gets super happy and smiley when we come.  You can tell that the Holy Ghost (Spanish version) is there teaching and preaching to them.  We had lunch with the Ocone family and asked for some references.  We ate a noddle casserole it contains: noodles, milk, cheese, and eggs.  It is really good and I really liked it and ate a whole bunch.  They are a really cool family.  Their son is leaving on a mission in a month so we talked with them and they are sad but it will be good.

This week was voting so there is a new President of Peru.  So there are two laws when voting here: you can’t meet as a group, so for us we can’t have church, and you can’t drink alcohol.  It is called the dry law.  So you can’t drink alcohol and you can’t meet as a group.  Hence we didn’t have church Sunday and we didn’t see any drunks, which was a first.  It was pretty interesting.  We went and visited a bunch of new people.  We went up to the family Pararez and we taught them all because they were all here to vote.  In order to vote you have to go back to where you were originally from or where your papers are from to vote.  So it is like if I lived in Utah then I was living in Minnesota I would have to go all the way back to Utah to vote.  If you don’t go back to vote you get fined.  A lot of people were traveling and so not a lot of people were home but we went and taught them. 

Honestly it was a really good week.  I am super happy with everything that has gone by and all the help that we had.  We also had interviews with the President and his assistants as a zone.  It was cool to talk to the President and see what he thinks about everything.  It was a fun day.

Everything is going great in the area.  Time is passing by way too fast.  But I’m just trying to make the most of it.  Make sure that you keep reading and praying.  Just do the little things and everything will be better.  Some time the stuff in the world comes by really fast and misguides us and blinds us.  Make sure that if you didn’t watch conference that you go back and watch it.  Well I hope that you all have a great week.  I’ll have a great week of course haha.

Well you guys have a great week and I love you so much.

Elder Cooley