Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Elder Madsen's Birthday Video

Elder Kolby Madsen is currently serving in the Denmark Copenhagen Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Danish.

Click here to see Elder Madsen's birthday video!

Happy Birthday, Elder Madsen!

Working Hard and Learning Much in Peru - Elder Jacob Avery

Written by Elder Jacob Avery, currently receiving training at the Peru Missionary Training Center (MTC) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Elder Avery will finish his training in two weeks, then he will travel to the Peru Lima West Mission.

These are pieces of three emails we received from Jake over the last two days. The internet was really acting up, so the missionaries were given permission to write two days in a row.

Yet another week in the MTC. The time begins to go by faster, and then you realize that the work has barely started! Unfortunately, the temple is closed for cleaning and maintenance for the rest of the time we're in the MTC. So today we just went shopping for our P-day (Preparation Day). The MTC is in a rich part of town, so the stores are very nice and the prices are very good (unless you want something American...American cereal is 16 soles while Peruvian cereal is about 5 soles).

We've been having a flu go around lately. It's not very bad, probably an 18-hour bug, but because of it the MTC President has told us to stop going to churro stands and restaurants. This is particularly devastating because the churros here are cheap, and they are filled with caramel! We also really enjoy the empanadas, which are basically calzones or hot pockets. But both of these are out of the question until we get into the field.

We went proselyting on Saturday, and my companion was an Elder from Ecuador. We did very, very well. We talked to six people from a town up on the foothills of the mountains, and we gave out four Libro de Mormons, and got several referrals for the missionaries in that area. The strangest part about asking people if they'd like to read the Book of Mormon is they almost always ask, ''¿Cuantos questan?'' (How much is it?) Then we need to explain that we aren't salesmen pitching a story about Joseph Smith, angels, and gold plates for money, but that we have a living prophet on the earth who receives revelation from our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, who calls on us and sends us all over the world to bring the children of God back into the fold. And, yes, you can have the dang book for free.

One lady, who was confused about the relationship between the Book of Mormon and Bible, pulled out her Bible and handed it to me as my companion talked. I then found a ''Proclamation to the World'' in her scriptures. It was really cool, and she took a Book of Mormon. But just to see how the word of God can reach this little old woman in Peru is awesome!

Learning Spanish is really a love/hate relationship, filled with mostly hate. I only enjoy Spanish when I'm talking about the Gospel. Anything else seems unnecessary and reminds me of working at McDonald's. Lots of us have hit a ceiling in the MTC, and we really just want to get to our missions to learn the rest.

Well, I hope that everyone in the states has an awesome week. I hope our internet works next week because I've spent 45 minutes waiting for things to load and there's a line of about 30 missionaries behind me. The gospel is true! I've seen the Spirit touch the hearts of these good people in Peru, and I can't wait to get in the field and share it with everyone!


Mom, My internet is toast. Please just let everyone know I remember them, but it takes at least 5 minutes to load each page using basic html. My enter button isn't working today, so add paragraphs where it feels natural.

Dad, The language is going well, but it's totally not there yet. I'll be fine by Christmas, but getting there is tough.

Everyone, I have only received two letters, and that is it so far. I've written all of you letters, but I haven't sent any of them yet because I literally have no time. With the temple closed, I'll have more time now. Today was P-day and we went shopping, but I try to never leave the MTC without a Book of Mormon. I couldn't find anyone to give it away to until I was on the bus home. I found a man on the bus reading the Bible, so I talked about the Book of Mormon and gave him one.

Elder Larsen and I are the Zone Leaders for all of the North Americans at the MTC right now. That's kind of exciting, but it also means that we need to go to the tattle tale committee meetings, which is kind of annoying and feels pointless. I guess it's good practice...

All of the Elders in my district and I have boycotted soccer and have been playing football, or frisby, or anything besides soccer. They're all very smart. Most of them are BYU, 4.0 students, and really good at sports. I feel like a slacker compared to them.

I finished all four Gospels this week. That was exciting. We also watched an awesome talk by Elder Bednar. It was a Christmas Day devotional at the MTC. Find it at all cost because I don't have enough time to explain it. Love you bye!  

I answered more questions!

1. What is your typical day like? Are you in class all day?

Typical day... wake up at 6:30 a.m. Turn over and kneel up for a prayer in bed. Grab my shower bag, towel, and flip flops. Walk down the hallway to the bathroom with my eyes shut. (They only have one bathroom on each floor, but they changed the 2nd floor so that the Elders have two because there are so many more Elders than Sisters. The new, second bathroom used to be the Sisters', so I don't know what they do, but their half of the building is a lot different than ours.) Wait in line for a shower because some people wake up early for showers. There are six different showers, so it doesn't take more than 10 minutes to get in. The water temperature has a mind of its own. It'll be super hot then freezing cold in a matter of momentos, so it keeps you on your toes. I probably have a few 2nd degree burns (solo un chiste, I'm fine!). Then I brush my teeth and lament in the mirror because, for some reason, our skin has deteriorated in the MTC... maybe due to stress, or the food, or the Lord is making us less appealing to prospective kidnappers.

We go to breakfast, then we have language study for an hour. There's a book we can study, or we can use a computer program made by BYU called Tall. After that we go to our district room, which is the only classroom we use. We spend about nine hours a day in this room, three of which are personal study. So we can actually go outside during that time.

Our teachers are our mock investigators. Each companionship will go outside, or in the capilla, with our teacher and teach lessons like they're an investigator. During this time, the rest of us study and prepare lessons (or play hacky sack while singing Pink Floyd).

We have lunch, then we have our study time, then physical activity which is an hour long. We have one teacher in the morning and one at night. At night we go back to our classroom, and our night teacher (Hermano Ibarra, who is the coolest guy in the world!) arrives. He's our other mock investigator. We go to dinner, more Spanish class, then planning meeting at 9 p.m. (still in our district room). The cafeteria people give us extra fruit at 9:20 p.m. Then we write in our journals and pray (or mess around) until bed time at 10:30 p.m.

Every second Saturday is proselyting, and every Sunday there's no class. We watch General Conference talks, watch church movies, and do Sacrament Meeting every Sunday.

2. Is Elder Larsen going to your mission?

Yes, Elder Larsen, Elder Howell, Elder Olsen, Hermana Hewitt, Hermana Barker, and Hermana Hooper are all in my district, and they're all going to the Lima West Mission. We have one Elder and one Hermana going to Lima South, and the other three Elders are going to Trujillo. That's my entire district.

3. Brigham and Jared want to know if you have chocolate milk?

NO! Hermana Hooper (she's from Australia, but her family is in New Zealand now, and she's the only person not from Utah, Idaho or California in my district) found some chocolate milk mix stuff at Tottus that they have in Australia. It's not that great, and the milk here tastes like goat milk.

4. Are you able to look at the blog?

No, I cannot look at the blog in any way. Could you please send me a copy of stuff from the blog so I can see?

5. Have you heard anything from your Mission President? You leave in two weeks, right?

No, not a peep. I leave next Tuesday morning. So yeah, it's basically two weeks.

Elder Avery's Third Week in the Peru MTC (August 6, 2013)

Wrapping Things Up at the Peru MTC (July 24, 2013)

Super crowded buses!

Tottus, our favorite place to shop!

Monday, July 29, 2013

Mexico...Arriba! - Elder Brian Burgess

Written by Elder Brian Burgess, currently serving in the Mexico Puebla North Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Spanish.

Hola Everyone!

I entered the MTC (Missionary Training Center) the 29th of May. I just barely realized earlier today that today is two months. Time has flown. And I´ve only just begun!

So, funny story to start us off. I don´t really understand the Mexico addresses, or Spanish in fact. But the other day my companion wanted to see if I could lead the way to an appointment. After taking a few wrong turns, and streets later, I hear a voice behind me (Elder Rodriguez, my companion), "Elder, ¿A donde vamos?" (Where are we going). So I thought I would be clever, and since I had no idea, I thought for a minute and said, " ¡El Reino de Celestial!" (The Celestial Kingdom!). I figured I didn't know where I was going on the street, But the Lord was happy I was at least trying. Haha! That's my first joke in Spanish. I hope you laugh. Because I tried hard.

Well, well, well... Mexico....I got my first haircut today. I was very scared because I forgot the words for haircut. So I just walked in (my companion thought it would be funny not to help), and I just smiled. She looked at me and acknowledged I had no idea what was going on. I pointed at my head. She pointed at the chair, gibbered some gibberish and laughed. I sat there and said a couple prayers, so I wouldn't leave bald. By the end of it, I was actually very pleased. I got the full, pampered treatment. And I like my haircut. It cost me $50 pesos, which is like 4 US Dollars. My companion's jaw dropped because apparently that's expensive. Oh boy! I´m used to paying 15 US Dollars. hahah!

"Those who keep a book of remembrance are more likely to keep the Lord in remembrance in their daily lives. Journals are a way of counting our blessings and of leaving the inventory of these blessings for our posterity." Spencer W. Kimball, Ensign, May 1978

I found this quote in my backpack. No idea where it came from. I taped it to the inside of my journal, and it has pushed me to write in my journal everyday. A very wise mother and father once told me to write in my journal everyday as well. I´m happy to say I haven´t missed a day. And it's been a blessing already. I also refer to it for things to remember to tell you all on P-Days.

Some days are hard because everyone reschedules or isn't home, or the man of the house is gone. But I try, and keep working hard. I've talked to many drunks. It's funny because everyone that I have talked to who knows some English is drunk. So either way, in English or Spanish, no one understands me.

Soooo... Mexico dogs...... Scary. I´ve almost been bit a few times. One was very scary. I looked down right as his jaw was over my ankle, and I moved just as it closed its bite. Barely missed it. Afterward, when I looked at the dog (a weird dog with like 10 different mixes of dog in it), its right eye was like three times bigger then its left, and it was gushing out this liquid that was not a good color. I´ve seen many little dogs with big heads. And big dogs with little heads. Many pit bulls with flappy ears and long fur. And the list goes on and on....So next time you see an ugly dog in the U.S., just remember it is a model dog compared to its competition down here.

Well, I love you all. I love this work. I love the gospel. I´ll try and send some pictures.

Elder Burgess

Before my haircut

The volcano is called Popocatepetl. You can see ancient
ruins in the far right of the photo.
Popocatepetl on a more active day. This was taken from
my Mission President's balcony.

A Peak into my Life in Mexico

God Wants You to be Happy! - Sister Lindsey Jeppson

Written by Sister Lindsey Jeppson, currently serving in the Arizona Mesa Mission / Mesa Temple Visitors' Center, speaking Spanish.


Well something that I realized this week is how much missions shape your life. I knew that missions were important because this gospel brings happiness! But they're also important because this is where you learn so many valuable lessons.

Satan knows that this is the true church and that this Gospel allows families to be together forever. So he works so hard to destroy any faith and hope that we have. He works through our weaknesses.

I've seen it in many occasions here. Not only with me but with our investigators. This is the true church! We are so blessed to have this knowledge. The journey is tough, but if we endure faithfully our reward will be glorious! Eternal life and happiness with the people we love!

Ether 12:6
"And now, I, Moroni, would speak somewhat concerning these things; I would show unto the world that faith is things which are hoped for and not seen; wherefore, dispute not because ye see not, for ye receive no witness until after the trial of your faith."

If you notice someone struggling, pray and ask Heavenly Father what you can do to help them. Comfort those who stand in need of comfort. You can be a part of miracles when you listen to the promptings of the Spirit!

Have a fantastic week! If you're struggling, remember the Lord is on your side. He, as well as your family (here and on the other side of the veil), want you to be happy!

Ser fuerte!! (be strong)

Te quiero,

Hermana Jeppson

Great Week  (July 23, 2013)

Technology and Fellowshipping in Arizona (August 5, 2013)

Service and Soccer in Denmark - Elder Kolby Madsen

Written by Elder Kolby Madsen, currently serving in the Denmark Copenhagen Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Danish.

This week we had some good service opportunities as Alex (name changed for privacy) decided to move, so we helped him out with that. That brings us down to one investigator, so more finding opportunities this week, yeah! I am excited.

This week started normal, just like every week. But we had a way good barbecue with Alex because he was moving. We gave him a going away party. It was fun! We had burgers and chips. They were way good. Everything, minus the chips, was homemade...patties and all. Super good!

Another thing that made this week super fun was our district activity. That means we give up a  preparation day (P-day) to hang out with the district. So we went to a soccer game. A really live, professional European soccer game! It was so much fun. We had a blast! I have pictures. It made me want to play soccer way bad, but I told myself I would wait until next June to play soccer. Dumb knee. Anyway, it was way cool.

On Saturday I went on splits with Elder Jensen. He was in my group. I went with him because Elder Hansen had a baptism to go to. So yeah, it was great. I got lost and then we found our way, thankfully, and worked hard. It's crazy how much Danish I know! And it only comes out when I am with someone that I know is either equal or lower in speaking level than I. But this week, again, very good.

I am going to start making video dairies on Sundays to talk about he week. I will send those home on the flash drive as well. So hopefully for Christmas you will have that. I thought it would be pretty cool anyway.

I hope you're enjoying your time without the girls (Kolby's sisters are in Idaho). I actually did kinda struggle this week, as I thought about time and how fast it's going. I made the mistake of thinking how long I have been out here. That is when I realized I need to pick up the pace and start really studying the language better. I just felt like I was being very lazy and digressing (in my personal, missionary way). I started to stress until I read a letter from Monica. Again she came in for the rescue. Every time she writes me, it just helps. She told me about her week, and a story about how she was scheduled to work on Sunday. She said she'd been upset that she was going to miss church again. Then she told me she showed up to work and the schedule was changed. Now she could go home right before and get to church on time. She told me how blessed she felt, and it was at that time when I realized that, yeah, I am not just going to wake up one day and be fluent in the language. It's completely irrational to think that way. I should be like Monica and just really think about the little things that I have received, and the things that the Lord had blessed me with, and the things that I should be grateful for.

So from now on, every prayer I will focus more on the things that I have received, and not worry about the things that I would like for myself. It will come. I just need to be patient and thankful for those things the Lord has given me.

Well, I just want to say that I know this gospel is true. When you break it all down and see the bigger picture, all you need to know is that God loves you, and because of that he sent his son to earth, Jesus Christ. And because of the great example that God set, Jesus followed. And with the love He has for us, He provided a way for us to come back to Him. And the details on what that entails come from the Prophets that we have on this earth today. Through our faith in God, and our diligence to Him and his sons and daughters He has called to lead us, and by following his inspiration, we can return back to Him. Gud Elkser dig og han ønske dig at kommer til ham. følger hans profeten (God loves you and wants you to come to Him. He has a prophet).

Med Kære Hilsen (with love and greetings),

Ældste Madsen

Chocolate Milk and Stinky Cheese (August 5, 2013)

Happy Birthday, Elder Madsen (July 22, 2013)

Kaerlighed means "LOVE"
This is where we had Family Home Evening

Awesome seats at the soccer game!
Our REAL, live, European soccer game!

This is where I got lost, but cool picture!

The Gospel is for the Whole World - Elder Spencer Brockbank

Written by Elder Spencer Brockbank, currently serving in the Florida Fort Lauderdale Mission, speaking Haitian Creole. Spencer is from a small town in Utah and has become a part of our family, like so many of our kids' friends. He's been in Florida for a year and will return home next summer.

Thanks for the email!!!

Yeah, that's crazy that Jake's in Peru and Hannah is almost in Chile!  Your house is probably a little less noisy ;) haha jk

I had no idea there would ever be Haitians in Virginia who didn't speak English!  I would send Dallin a Book of Mormon in Haitian Creole, but his mission office will surely provide him one if he asks.

Speaking of Haitians, here's a pic of members of a Haitian family that I baptized yesterday :D  The rest of the family is getting baptized next week! Woo!

Tell the family HI for me!,

Elder Brockbank

I'm Fixin' to Teach the Gospel! - Elder Dallin Remund

Written by Elder Dallin Remund, currently serving in the Virginia Chesapeake Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Spanish.

Hello everyone!!

I hope I'm finding everyone at a great time in this wonderful summer. July is almost over! And today marks two months since I left Herriman, Utah to serve a mission. What a great two months it has been so far. It has been flying by so fast!

This week has been sooo awesome! I basically got to celebrate another birthday because all my letters and packages came in this week. Thanks to all those that sent me letters and flowers, and all the fancy lotions and stuff! Haha! I love y'all.

By the way, y'all has become a part of my vocabulary down here. Everyone says it. People can tell there is something weird about you if you say 'you all' or even 'you guys.' Welcome to the South! Another thing a bunch of people do out here is instead of saying 'I'm going to', they say 'I'm fixin' to.' I'm fixin' to go out and preach the gospel tonight!

So, on Wednesday, we went over to the Hernandez's house to paint their fence! We were outside all day with Brittany and Alison, who are both Young Womens' age, and their non-member friend, Sergio. After a day at work, we taught Sergio about the Restoration! He seemed to really like it, and he keeps going to church with the Hernandez family! The next day, we had a scripture study with him and we studied the Introduction.

Yesterday we went back to the Hernandez's house for lunch and I had my first 'sopole' which is like a Mexican soup with hominy-type corn stuff with chicken and pork. It was pretty good! It was my first Hispanic meal out on the mission! We taught Sergio about the Gospel (faith, repentance, baptism, the Holy Ghost, and enduring to the end) afterwards and he is continuing to progress! He is enjoying it. We hope to have another lesson with him this week and invite him to be baptized at the end of the month. The only problem is that he lives in a city outside our mission boundaries, so we would have to get special permission to go to the Albertson Ward. Hope everything turns out okay.

On Saturday, we went over to Milo and Mildred Harper's house to paint their house. More paint! We are professional painters now. They have 10 kids, and 9 of them live here in Albertson. The other kid and their family lives in West Jordan and their daughter went to Copper Hills and knows James Wright. Small world! But Brother and Sister Harper are part of the reason that the whole ward is related to each other! So many kids and they all stay here and then someone marries into the family. It's not the Albertson Ward, it's the Harper Ward! Hahaha! One older member named Brother Huggins gave me his 'talk' he gives all missionaries saying there's a trend that there's a lot of missionaries that serve here and come back to marry an Albertson woman and settle here. He says "they cook great, they clean great, they're kind, and they make beautiful babies." Hahahaha! I was dying.

We've been doing a lot of contacting Hispanics this week and it's been really great. It's nice to finally be more immersed in the language I'm supposed to be speaking! I've become a lot more excited about speaking Spanish with others as I've exercised my faith in Christ that I can do this! The mission is so fun!!! We went to go to visit a non member family we had an appointment with last night and they ended up being muy 'ocupado' or busy. :-) I've become used to people canceling, but I learned that when one door closes, another opens! We met their Mexican neighbors who were outside. The wife was super crazy nice and excited to talk to us, and the husband was interested, too. We set up an appointment with them on Tuesday! Not sure how it will turn out, but a door opens when another closes!

I am super excited for this week! I'm going up to Portsmouth, Virginia this Thursday for my trainer's training. We're going to stop off in Greenville, North Carolina, and then go up to Virginia! Should be fun to visit Virginia again!

Well, time is just about up! It was great to get emails from everyone this week. I love you all! I love this work! This is the Lord's work and I am on His errand.

I'm grateful for the strength the Lord has given me and for all your prayers. I sure think about y'all a ton! This gospel is TRUE and through application of its principles through prayer and study, we can be truly happy!

Con paz y bendiciones ("with peace and blessings"),

Elder Remund

Called to Know the Richness of His Blessings!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Elder Jensen's First Letter from Virginia

Written by Elder Nate Jensen, currently serving in the Washington D.C. South Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Well, the first day we went to the mission home and had interviews and stuff. It was pretty cool. After we talked a little bit, President looked me strait in the eye and said, "I expect a lot out of you. I can tell you have great leadership and I expect a lot." So that was pretty cool. Then he asked who I was and what I did, and all that stuff, so I guess you could say the interview went well. Then we went to bed, woke up, and met my trainer. His name is Elder Chipman.

I have stayed obedient, and we have had success. We have knocked just under 200 doors the past three days, and we already have three investigators, with a ton more potentials. The first are Xavier and Janessa (names changed for privacy). We ran into him street contacting one night, and we were able to set up an appointment. We taught them yesterday, and they were both receptive and loved it.

Our other investigator is named Andy (name changed for privacy), and we met him tracting. He came to church with us yesterday and that was way good. He liked it and wants to keep coming back. We teach him tonight, so we will see how that goes.

It's way weird. President Riggs is super young. He has a ten year old and a thirteen year old. It's pretty crazy. He is awesome though, and every one says he is way good at sports, so I can't wait to see that.

D.C. is ridiculously hot haha!  I have been dying. The humidity is killer out here, but it's all part of the experience, and people take pity on you. I guess you could say we get a ton of free water haha! The other thing is the area that we are in is all Spanish people, so I can't talk to half of the people that we meet, and that's kinda frustrating. But the ones we can talk to, it's worth it. I can't give you my address, but we are in Arlington, Virginia.

It's hard having Lindsey go home (Nate's sister, Lindsey, just arrived home from the West Virginia Charleston Mission, after 18 months of service). Just thinking about that is tough, but I am trying not to, and just focus on the work.

Life is good out here. I don't really have much else to say. Love you lots. Thanks for getting that package sent. Oh, and yeah, my bike and bedding are here, and they are great. Thanks a ton!!

Elder Jensen

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Elder Avery's Third Week at the Peru MTC

Written by Elder Jacob Avery, currently training at the Peru Missionary Training Center (MTC) of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Elder Avery will leave the MTC in three weeks to serve in the Peru Lima West Mission.

Well, this week has been kind of crazy. We received about 90 Elders (30 North Americans) after the last group left for the field. Every two weeks a group will leave on Tuesday and another group will come in the next day, so my room was revamped. We now have four bunk beds instead of three, 1 million suitcases, and they sawed our desks out of the wall to make room for the six new Elders. When I asked one of the workers, ''Por que!?'' ("Why?"), he said something to the effect of, ''Un profeta de Dios dice que.'' ("A prophet of God says so.") Ya, I can't argue with that logic.

Our teachers are all Peruvian and speak very little English. This week, one of my teachers was explaining how to use the verb ser (to be). She said, ''Soy mediana.'' For some reason, every single one of us assumed it was another word for short. But when she translated it to English, mediana is medium (which we should have known). The punch line is that she considers herself medium when she's maybe five feet tall!

I haven't received any letters via or pouch mail. I've only received the copied emails from and regular emails to my missionary email account.

I answered your questions below!

1. Is it cold?

A little. It's in the 50's or 60's. It's drizzly pretty much every day. The first day there was sun, I went up to some of the Latina workers and said, ''¿Hay sol en Peru?'' ("No sun in Peru?") They laughed.

2. What do you eat and drink?

Rice and fish, rice and chicken, and rice and some rice. Eggs with toast every morning. We get really watered down juices from the strangest fruits that really shouldn't be made into a watermelon, pear, cantaloupe, and stuff we can't tell what it is. Limeade and lemonade are my favorites. I mostly just drink water.

3. Did you find your oil vial?

No, my oil vial has gone the way of the earth. I have a new one though, and I have new oil.

4. Where is Elder Larsen from?

Elder Larsen is from Logan, Utah. He went to Logan High School and was a big basketball player.

5. Will you have a native speaking companion in the MTC before you leave?

No, I will not. I have six Latino roommates though, so I talk to them a lot. They only stay for two weeks before going to their missions though.

6. How do you do your laundry? Is the MTC pretty comfortable as far as that kind of thing?

Each floor of the building has about a dozen washers and dryers. Everything is on a schedule. This morning my laundry time was from 6-7 a.m. and I had to finish it all during that time. My email time is from 8-9 a.m., and they're strict about it. Preparation Day (P-day) ends at 5 p.m., so I can't write letters or anything past 5.

7. Is there anything we should send with Hannah that you wish you had?

Not really. The little Spanish book is fine. We get big Spanish books when we arrive in the MTC, but they're annoying to carry around and they're basically the exact same book as the little red one you gave me.

8. Are any of the North Americans receiving packages? If so, how are they being sent?

Packages are a big fat NO. They can take months to get here and the customs taxes end up costing more money than it costs to buy the item. Nobody is sending or receiving packages.

9. Do you need anything? What can we do for you?

I'm doing great! I'm staying busy, and time is starting to really fly now. I'll be home before you know it. Your prayers and support are all I need.

10. Are we writing too much? Too little? Tell us how to best support you!
Writing is just fine. I only have an hour for everything though, and these computers are painfully slow.

I'm doing great right now! I'm so happy that you guys are all fine. I'm so sorry my letters are rushed. Hopefully in the field I'll have more time to write emails. I love you!


This is a short email Jake sent to his dad this morning:

Dear Dad,

I know I haven't been able to email you and I'm sorry about that. I'm doing awesome in the MTC right now. The Spanish is going well. I'm one of the better oonneess  iinn  mmyy  ddiissttrriicc  ((ssoorrrryy  mmyy  ccoommppuutteerr  iiss  ggooiinngg  ccrraazzzzyy))  RReeaaddiinngg  hhaass  bbeeeenn  ggoooodd  tthhee  bbiibbllee  iiss  rreeaallllyy  tthhiicckk  tthhoo.  ddooiinngg  tthhee  ssccrriippttuurreess  iinn  ssppaanniisshh  iiss  pprreettttyy  mmuucchh  iimmppoossssiibbllee  tthhoo.  pphhyyssiiccaall  eexxcceerrssiizzee  iiss  oonnee  ooff  mmyy  ffaavvoorriittee  ppaarrttss  ooff  mmyy  ddaayy  tthhoo.  wwee  eeiitthheerr  ppllaayy  ffoooottbbaallll  ssoocccceerr  oorr  bbaasskkeettbbaallll.  aannyywwaayy  ii''mm  oouutt  ooff  ttiimmee  bbyyee!! Tell mom I can't really send pictures. The computers are too slow. I'll try again next week tho. Idk what i even sent last time.

Working Hard and Learning Much in Peru (July 31, 2013)

Lessons in Peru...alarm clocks, traffic, and such (July 16, 2013)

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Great Week in Mesa - Sister Lindsey Jeppson

Written by Sister Lindsey Jeppson, currently serving in the Arizona Mesa Mission/ Mesa Temple Visitors Center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Hola Familia --

This week was great! We got four new sisters at the Visitors' Center (VC), three Spanish and one English. I'm no longer the new one!! Whoo!! I can't believe how much things have changed in just six weeks! Crazy! But it's good!

Ok, there's one thing I just want to say, "Missionaries are not perfect." We make mistakes. We're still human! I think I needed to understand that because I was holding myself at a ridiculously high expectation to be perfect. So this week, I've been evaluating my weaknesses and my strengths and making small goals. So, poco a poco (little by little), I will grow into the missionary that the Lord needs me to be. Comparing is one of Satan's most destructive tools! Don't do it!

Anyway, I've been praying for tons of help with listening to the promptings of the Spirit. On Sunday, we had the morning shift, and things were so slow. So I got a lot of studying down. While we were at the back greet, a man came in, so I got up and talked to him. We talked about missionary work and service, and about his efforts in missionary work. After we were finished talking, he went and read his scriptures and I continued to study. An hour later, we got up to leave, but he came and talked to me again, before he left. He said, "Sister Jeppson, thank you. I know that sometimes missionaries don't feel that they're actually helping somebody. But I wanted to let you know that I feel the Spirit and the mantle that you have as a missionary. Thank you for what you said. It was an answer to my prayer." I was so blown away! After he left, I said one of the most grateful prayers ever!

A goal we have in the VC is listening. Listening to the visitors and listening to the Spirit. Just making a conscience effort to do so has blessed us with so many miracles! One of our investigators at the VC FINALLY recognized why he needs to be baptized, and it's because we listened to him and taught according to what he needs!! It was crazy!

This week, something that I have been learning and coming to more fully understand is how great the blessing of eternal life and families is. It's helping me recognize the value of this work! It is such a blessing!!!!!

Continue to be missionaries!! Preach the Gospel at all times!!! This gospel brings pure happiness. It's something that we need to share with everyone so they can have that happiness in their life!!

Have a great week!!!

Te quiro mucho!!

Hermana Jeppson

God Wants You to be Happy! (July 29, 2013)

Looking Up (July 15, 2013)

Monday, July 22, 2013

On the Lord's Errand - Elder Dallin Remund

Written by Elder Dallin Remund, currently serving in the Virginia Chesapeake Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Hello everyone!

I opened up my email and I had 16 emails! I read through all of them, and I am just so happy to hear from all of you.

I can't believe it's been a week and a half out here. I've been learning that missionary work is work! You get so tired, but you keep pushing. I'm on the Lord's errand! What a great errand it is!

I think the biggest thing this week has been my connection with the ward members. They are really great! We've visited with a ton of them, and they all bring us in and talk with us. The South is super hospitable! We were talking to members about the weather out here in the summer. It's supposed to get super stormy, and we should expect a little bit of hurricane weather in the next month or so. I'm pretty excited for that! As long as it doesn't get too bad!

We are teaching a couple Hispanic families out here. The Hispanics are SO humble. They will always let you into their homes, and they are receptive to the message. The challenge is having them act on the commitments they make to read The Book of Mormon and pray with real intention to know if it is true. The Lord will provide for those who do it, and they will receive that witness! There are some people who are so ready for the gospel! I am excited to see what this next week brings.

On Friday, I went on an exchange with our District Leader in Mt. Olive, AKA the 'Pickle Capitol' of the world! Like I said last time, think of me when you see a jar of Mt. Olive pickles. ;) The exchange was really neat. Elder Bowes, who's from Arizona, speaks really good Spanish and he's on his way out. I learned a ton from him! We talked to a Haitian that natively spoke Creole and French, but also knows Spanish. I did not understand a word that he was saying... It was so confusing! But he is so knowledgeable, and he wants to read The Book of Mormon. But he can't read it in Spanish or English, so he needs a  Creole one. Apparently there's a lot of Haitians in the Mt. Olive area! And they are ready for the gospel, so hopefully they can send out some Haitian Creole speaking missionaries to the mission in the future!

My birthday was one of the craziest days ever. It was spent picking weeds out in an older member couples' garden and talking to less active members and recent converts. It was the best way I could have spent my birthday!

Saturday was one of the most fun days out in the field.. One of my favorite families in the ward, the Hernandez family, drove us up to Goldsboro to play soccer with some other Hispanics in the zone. It was intense. I am no good at futbol. Haha! But the Hernandez family is amazing! They were a little less active in the church a couple months back, but they're one of the strongest families now. They speak English and Spanish, so you get a good mix with them. Hermano Hernandez wants to receive the Melchizedek Priesthood, and Hermano and Hermana Hernandez are hoping to be sealed in the temple in the next couple months, which is so exciting!!! Their family is reaping the full benefits from the gospel, and they are learning new things every day. I feel like I'm with family when I'm with them. AND Brittney, their daughter brought a friend to church with her last week. She also brought him to a fireside that Elder Bednar spoke at in Goldsboro. Now Sergio, her friend, wants to know more, so we're teaching him AND his sister in the next week. Ah! It just fills my heart to be a part of all of this.

I love this work! It is tiring, but so blessed! We all have a divine potential here on this earth. As we meditate on the words of Jesus Christ and the prophets, pray to God, and live what we learn, we receive a wonderful outpouring of the Spirit and the truthfulness of this gospel! It is wonderful, and it is here for everyone!

I loved hearing from all of you this week! I'll give out my address one more time so you can write me letters throughout the week:

1019 Seth Turner Road
Deep Run, NC 28525

Con felicidad,

Elder Remund

I'm Fixin' to Teach the Gospel!

Happy Birthday, Elder Madsen!

Written by Elder Kolby Madsen, currently serving in the Denmark Copenhagen Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

OK, this week was great! I honestly could not have asked for a better birthday. Danes know how to throw a party! Anyway, I will get back to that later.

So, this week we invited Alex (name changed for privacy) to be baptized, and he said he would. He just has to receive an answer from the Lord that it's right. And the same with Claire (name changed for privacy). So, the week was looking up right off the bat. We still don’t have any dates scheduled, but it’s not about that. It’s about the people coming closer to Christ and Heavenly Father. Whether a person is an active member of the church, less active, or not a member of our faith, this gospel is all about coming closer to Jesus Christ.

We finally got over the whole sick thing, but elder Hansen is still having problems with congestion. We also got word that Elder Ludlow received his visa and will arrive on Wednesday. He was in Fresno for nine weeks! That crazy time has flown by. I can’t keep up.

I got to go on splits with Elder Christiansen. He came out the same time as me, so it was way fun to get to go out together as fresh, new missionaries who don’t know the language very well. It was awesome! I didn't realize how much Danish I actually know. The Lord has blessed me so much. We contacted for about four hours on the split, and we did great. We could understand, and really just talk to people about the things we love so much, and explain why we came out here.

We met a guy that has met with the missionaries before. He asked us for our number and we got his information. We are going to meet with him tomorrow. It’s going to be awesome. As ineffective as contacting and knocking doors is, you really learn the language doing it, and it’s fun to talk to people on the way to appointments.

So, this week the BIG #19 came up, and it came FAST! I woke up to Elder Simpson jumping on me and wishing me, "Happy Birthday!" It was funny. Then the other Elders went and bought me a tricant. It’s an amazing pastry! After that, President called and wished me a happy birthday. He told me his son, who's currently serving in Tacoma Washington, just turned 19 the same day as me. So we chatted for a little while. It was fun. He is a very great man. I love him.

After my phone call, we went to work and just had a normal day, as expected. That night I was going to go on exchanges with Elder Christiansen in Amager. The second I got off the train, there was a big group of people singing and waving flags. Some drunk people down the way also started singing. It was really kind of embarrassing, but way fun. A member of the Amager congregation told me that I had to eat some very Danish food in order to get my birthday presents. When I agreed, he said I needed to be blind folded. So they blindfolded me and fed me some nasty cheese and liver crap. I will send the video. It's crazy! Anyway, it was way fun, and I would not have it any other way.

I'm so grateful for the Lord making this a way good week. I actually understood about 60% of Sacrament Meeting. It was good. I know the Lord looks after his servants and all His children. I know that He places us in these situations because He knows we can go through them and make a comeback. The scripture that kept me going this week (and has always been in my head throughout the whole mission) is 1 Nephi 3:7, "And it came to pass that I, Nephi, said unto my father: I will go and do the things which the Lord hath commanded, for I know that the Lord giveth no commandments unto the children of men, save he shall prepare a way for them that they may accomplish the thing which he commandeth them."

I love you, and remember God loves you. Serve Him. Missionary work is not only for the missionaries. It’s a calling to all members of His church. As we are baptized, we take the name of Christ upon us. That includes loving everyone for who they are, and bringing souls back to the fold of God. Help them realize that God loves them, and let them know He just wants what is best for them.

Med Kære Hilsen,

Ældste Madsen

Service and Soccer (July 29, 2013)

It's Not Always Sunshine and Butterflies  (July 15, 2013)

A great way to spend a Birthday!

The GOOD part of my birthday food!!

The BAD part of my birthday food!

A dock in Amager, where I spent the evening of my birthday.

A birthday present from one of the members in Amager.

Our very large library of copies of The Book of Mormon. Denmark
is so diverse, there is a need to have copies in many languages.

Click here to see Elder Madsen's Birthday video!

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Mormon Temples

Many not of our faith ask why we, members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, do what we do. What do Mormons believe? Why do Mormons serve missions? Why are families so important to members of the Mormon church? Why do Mormons live by so many "rules"?

The center of everything we do and believe can be found inside our temples. If you would like to see what the inside of a temple looks like, or if you just want to understand why temples are so important to us, please watch this beautiful video.

Meet with the missionaries.

Learn more about what Mormons believe.

Request a free copy of The Book of Mormon.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Lessons in Peru...alarm clocks, traffic, and such - Elder Jacob Avery

Written by Elder Jacob Avery

Elder Avery is currently training at the Peru Missionary Training Center (MTC). He will be serving in the Peru Lima West Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Spanish.

My sincerest thanks for all the prayers that have blessed me in the CCM (Centro Conductor de Misionerios). We watched a talk by one of our beloved Apostles, Jeffrey R. Holland, in which he said that we (missionaries) are the most commonly blessed members of the church besides Christ's prophet, Thomas S. Monson. I'm looking back at my week, and I know that I've felt your prayers carry me through.

Well, the Latinos all left to their missions this morning, and this place is so quiet without them. I'll miss my Spanish speaking friends, but playing American football with the other North American missionaries was so amazing, and I had so much fun. The only issue is that I'm treated like the "special kid" when it comes to physical activities. Every time I catch the ball or make a defensive play, all the Elders are like, ''Good job, Elder Avery! Nice hands! Good D, good D!'' ... It's okay, I know that I'm super athletic deep within me, and that's all that matters :)

Today we went to a store called Metro, which is sort of a super market, and really the only American kind of store nearby. Our Peruvian teacher told us that either Tottus or Metro would have an alarm clock, but Elder Larsen and I couldn't find one for the life of us! Elder Larsen put his suitcase up on the shelf where they go, but he didn't see Elder Degala's clock up there, so now it's thoroughly broken. Since we couldn't find a new clock, Elder Larsen replaced the broken clock with his own.

While we were out looking for an alarm clock, we learned some important things about traffic laws and rules in Peru:

#1. Drive as aggressively as possible.
#2. Size is totally irrelevant to the gaps you can squeeze into.
#3. Traffic lights are optional and are only put there as a guideline.
#4. Honk as often as humanly possible, just for fun.
#5. In a roundabout, kill or be killed.
#6. Oncoming traffic lanes were invented so that you can have another option if traffic is congested in the direction you are travelling.

The buses we take to the temple, Tottus, and Metro are extremely crowded, to the point that we don't need to hold on to anything because we are packed in there like sardines. Throw in some more fun by driving on roads with no obvious traffic rules. Yes, I'm almost used to it :) We haven't seen or heard of a car wreck yet. The traffic is usually only going about 30 miles an hour, and the local drivers are very good at what they do, so it works out in the end.

I still have plenty of Dove chocolates, and I gave some to the people I taught in the slums the other night. My companion for that day was a native speaker, Elder Ipo (name changed for privacy). He is a dwarf. I was so scared that we were going to get mugged or beaten, but God protects His missionaries. Elder Ipo did most of the talking, and I did the knocking. He was a little more shy than me, which stinks because I can't speak the language yet. We shared a copy of The Book of Mormon with someone, which was exciting.

The highlight of my week, however, has been my reading the Book of Mormon again. I can happily and proudly proclaim that it is the word of God! I am so glad that the message my God has sent me to share is the fullness of His gospel, truth and happiness. Jesus Christ of Nazareth is the Messiah and Son of God, and today we have a second witness and testimony of the blessings of His sacred Atonement.

I hope things are going well in the states, and I hope that God is blessing you the way He is blessing me.

Elder Avery's Third Week in Peru

Elder Avery's First Full Week in Peru

Elder Larsen and Elder Avery
Lima Peru Temple

Elder Avery's Peru MTC District
Lima Peru Temple

Monday, July 15, 2013

Looking Up in Arizona - Sister Lindsey Jeppson

Written by Sister Lindsey Jeppson

Sister Jeppson is currently serving in the Arizona Mesa Mission/Mesa Arizona Temple Visitor's Center, speaking Spanish.


I had a great week! So much better than last.

We have transfers this week! I'm staying with my companion and in our area! Whoa! But there are a ton of Sisters who have been out for only 6 weeks and are already training. So it will be an interesting week. My companion got called as a trainer at the Visitor's Center (VC) a week and a half ago, so she's been insanely busy (a trainer for the VC is like an Assistant to the President [AP]). She's been stressed with all her new responsibilities, so I've stepped up to help her out in any way I can.

Anyway, so we are working with this lady who was a former investigator. We found out that her daughter got baptised and is now serving a mission!! Perfect opportunity. You can tell that she wants the gospel in her life. She loves talking to us! However, she doesn't want to be baptised because she feels that she will be alone. Her husband and family are Catholic, and she's scared that she won't have their support. She told us that she wants to wait for her daughter to come home before she makes any decisions. Faith has been the focus of our lessons with her.

In the VC, we've been working on cleaning out our online area book. We've been calling everyone to see who will continue to progress and who we need to drop. We have a visitor who comes in and gets lessons from us. The local missionaries haven't contacted him yet, so we're working closely with him. I can't tell you his real name for privacy reasons, so we'll call him Jose. Jose came in while we were on post. Hermana Valladares was talking to another visitor, so I went and talked to him. He speaks Spanish and some English. So I struggled through, asking him questions. But it seemed like he understood, so that's good! Anyway, we're to the point where he needs to decide if this is what he wants in his life. I think with the questions I've asked, he'll decide pretty soon.

I absolutely love the ward I'm serving in. Latinos are so great! They're all so loving and welcoming. Whenever we go to the members' homes for dinner, they're always just so happy. There's this one family who has a son on a mission in Russia. The dad is so funny! He's helping me pronounce words correctly, especially words where I need to roll the "r". It's great.

The Spanish is coming. Slowly but surely. I can share an awesome testimony, but understanding and responding to questions is a little more difficult. The heat here is crazy. I'm inside most of the time, so esta bien! We did get a pretty cool dust storm the other day! I'll have to send a picture.

Thank you for everything! I love you all!

Stand Steadfastly  (July 8, 2013)

Great Week (July 23, 2013)

It's Not Always Sunshine and Butterflies - Elder Kolby Madsen

Written by Elder Kolby Madsen

Elder Madsen is currently serving in the Denmark Copenhagen Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Danish.

That is so much fun! Girls' Camp kind of sounded miserable, but the raining camps were my favorite when I was in Scouts because me and Nate would just do whatever we wanted. It was a blast! I bet you had fun.

So, this week was a little rough, but I will get into that later. That burger was amazing! The flavor was super good, and when we come to Denmark you can try the smaller one.

For my birthday, the only thing that I can think of, that I don’t need by any means, but maybe a BYU Vocal Point CD. I heard about another missionary CD from Alaska, but I can’t remember what it's called...just some really good EFY (Especially For Youth) stuff. Music is like gold here because that's all we have to do in our morning and evening planning times.

Well, this week was very different than anything else I have experienced so far. To start out, we had some good lessons with Alex (name changed for privacy). He is starting to make some good steps towards where he needs to be. The best part is that we keep surrounding him with all these Mormon friends, so he is changing for the better and does not even realize it. The other day he texted us, and instead of swearing over the text, he used some of the filler "Utah Mormon" swear words that I taught him. Now he uses those words in normal conversation. It’s funny.

On Thursday we went on exchange with the Zone Leaders, so I was with Elder Petersen who is also of Danish decent. We had an appointment with Joseph (name changed for privacy), the African guy with a scheduled baptismal date. He is super, mega fedt (cool). I felt prompted during the lesson that we needed to read 3 Nephi, Chapter 8. I don’t know why because it talks about the destruction that happened before Christ came to the Nephites, and we had already read Chapter 11 where Christ actually comes. But I went with it. (Keep in mind, Elder Hansen was up north with Elder Richards, the other Zone Leader. So I was leading the area.)

Anyway, we had this great lesson. I understood most of it, and I talked to Joseph in Danish, bore testimony that when bad things come in life, it can only get better. And I reminded him that before something good happens, sometimes things get a little harder. I told him to always know that God loves him and will be there for him at all times. Well, the lesson ended, and as we are walking out, I told Elder Petersen that I was sorry. He said, "No, the lesson went really well." But I felt as if Joseph was a little off. He'd told me about his really long work hours and that it affects him sometimes. Anyway, that night we got a text from Joseph telling us that he has decided not to be baptised, and he doesn't want anything to do with the church. He did say that we were cool and that he loves being around us, and that he wishes it was different, but it’s not. So we were dropped.

That made me feel like I needed to go right out, contact people, and just work my butt off. I wanted to find some people and bring them to Christ...tell them of His love for them. Then Elder Hansen started feeling way sick, so we sat there for a little and next thing I know, he is throwing up and has a fever. The poor guy had a rough couple days, and he still feels really sick. So Saturday and yesterday we sat in the apartment all day. I read the whole Pearl of Great Price and all of Genesis, watched "The Testaments", and got some much needed cleaning done. The sad thing is that he is not the only one who is sick. There are five other missionaries, just in our zone, that have the flu. So the work has slowed down for a little bit. But on the bright side, it’s on the up and up next week. We will double our work. I haven’t sat in a room for long hours like this since my knee surgery.

No basketball today. It's okay. Maybe it's for the best.

Well, I love you and want you to know that I know that in all things there can be rough times. It’s not always easy. When God puts things in our lives, He knows that we can handle them and that we can pull through. God loves us, He loves our family, and He loves the world. I know this to be true. And I know that God will help us through the good, the bad, and the ugly. He allows us to experience hard things so we can learn and grow.

Med Kære Hilsen.

Ældste Madsen

Happy Birthday, Elder Madsen! (July 22, 2013)

American Independence, Denmark Style!  (July 8, 2013)

July 4, 2013

Elder Metcalf will NEVER
cut my hair again!
The living room of our apartment

Elder Hansen and Elder Madsen

Carolina Country! - Elder Dallin Remund

Written by Elder Dallin Remund

Elder Remund is currently serving in the Virginia Chesapeake Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, speaking Spanish.

Hello everybody!!!

What an eventful week! So, I'm going to start from the beginning at 3 in the morning at the MTC (Provo Missionary Training Center). I woke up, and got ready the fastest I ever have in my whole life. Grabbed all my suitcases and said goodbye to Elder Kiene and a couple more of the Elders from the other district in our zone. Checked in at the office and got on the bus to the airport. Got to call home and talk to everyone at the airport which was so nice! Boarded the plane to Detroit; there were some mechanical errors that they had to fix before we left, so we were there for about 30 more minutes just waiting. We landed in Detroit and I felt humidity for the first time in my life! It feels like hot dishwasher steam, unlike the air from a dryer like in Utah. Crazy!

Here's where everything went loco... We're waiting for the plane to Norfolk, Virginia to arrive at Detroit. Nothing. The flight ended up being cancelled for an unknown reason. Turns out, the whole group of us 26 Chesapeake missionaries were then separated into little groups of 5 and put onto random, connecting flights across the country! Me and four other missionaries were scheduled to go from Detroit to Boston, then Boston to NYC, then NYC to Norfolk, VA. We were supposed to arrive there at 9:00 p.m. instead of 4:00 p.m., as previously scheduled. We flew into Boston around 5 o'clock and talked to one of the ladies at the desk about our situation. She told us there's no way we could get to Virginia that night because of the storms along the East Coast. So, we talked to the ticket counter and they said the next time they could get all five of us on a flight to Virginia was at 7 p.m. the NEXT day. Shoot! We didn't know what to do. We called President Baker, and he said to go ahead with that plan. Thing after thing was happening, but we stayed positive. They let us stay in a hotel for free in East Boston and gave us free transportation and food, so that was a blessing! We showed up at the airport the next day to wait for our flight at 7:00 p.m. that night. Everyone else that was scattered in that Detroit business had showed up in Virginia that morning, so it was just us five missionaries stuck in Boston, waiting for a flight.

About 6:30 p.m., we heard an announcement about how the plane that was supposed to come get us was in Canada and having mechanical problems.... They said the flight was delayed till 9:30 p.m.... We stayed optimistic, despite the fact that we had no change of clothes in our carry on bags, and I had no toiletries! Luckily, there was a travel store that had those items, and I had a good amount of money on my card to keep me alive in the airport. They also paid us $25 because of the delays in the airport, so I got myself a nice Harvard shirt, haha!

Later, they announced that the plane would not leave Canada because the problem was too severe, BUT they would send a plane from Virginia to come pick us up! What a RELIEF! Haha! We flew on a smaller plane over the East Coast and got to see some cool city lights! We showed up in Virginia about midnight and met up with the President and his wife, along with the Assistants to the President (APs). We stayed the night at the AP's house, which is a super nice townhouse. Holy cow! I was so exhausted...Got all dressed up and went to the mission office, had a quick interview, and got my assignment!

I'm serving in a tiny town called Albertson, North Carolina! It's pronounced "Allbursun." Every name out in North Carolina and Virginia is pronounced different than you think! But ya, I get to be out in the country! It is so crazy out here. Gorgeous country, so many trees, lots of tobacco and cotton fields, and almost everyone has a Southern accent! I am IN the South. It's so great!

It's about four and a half hours south from the mission office in Portsmouth, VA! Right at the edge of the mission boundaries. I am speaking basically half Spanish and half English. There are a couple of Spanish families in the ward. They need translations in sacrament meeting, and I have to translate the talks and everything next week! Wish me luck!

Speaking of the ward, everyone's awesome! So kind and hospitable. Everyone is related to each other. "The guy over there is her mom's cousin. And that woman over there is his aunt. Oh, she married into the Harper family! I'm related to the bishop because his wife's mom is my grandma's sister!" It's so funny!!!!

My trainer is Elder Knott! He's from Sandy, UT, and he was originally from the North Carolina Raleigh Mission. He's been out here for a while, so he knows the places. He's awesome!

The little house that Elder Knott and I live in is crazy! It's on member property and it's pretty old. Everyone calls it "The Chicken Coop." Haha! It's really not bad, though. It has a washer, dryer, bathroom, oven, etc. Everything I need to live! It's surrounded by a big, green field and there's so many trees surrounding that field! I'm out in the country!

This week has been just SO awesome! I taught my first member lesson the night I arrived, then I taught my first lesson with an investigating family on Saturday, and yesterday I placed my first Book of Mormon in Spanish! It was crazy! I know it just sounds like a big list of things, but each event was so special and very powerful. Every time I finish talking with someone about the gospel, I walk out feeling so filled with the Spirit and so grateful for this gospel! I am so honored to be a missionary. I had no idea that it would be anything as amazing as this! The people out here are so spiritual and kind to everyone, even if they don't agree with our faith. It's just a different culture out here, and I love it! There are some amazing truth seekers out here. I can't wait for this next week to see how the work unfolds!

Well, I am running short on time! There's so much going on out here, but I want to hear how everyone is doing! Email me, or send a letter to my address:

1019 Seth Turner Road
Deep Run, North Carolina 28525

I am so grateful for all of you, and I just want to share my testimony that I know this is the true church. I know Jesus Christ lives. I know that He made it possible so that all of us can live with Him again, along with our families. Heavenly Father has an amazing plan and we can learn of it everyday in the scriptures to keep us from doubting and fearing our path ahead!

Con mucho felicidad,

Elder Remund!

Inside "The Chicken Coop"!

Elder Dallin Remund - Virginia Chesapeake Mission

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Elder Madsen's Zone in Denmark

I found this on Elder Madsen's Mission President's blog:

Sjaelland Zone, Denmark Copenhagen Mission

Media Training, July 10, 2013

American Independence, Denmark Style! (July 8, 2013)

It's Not Always Sunshine and Butterflies (July 15, 2013)

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Elder Avery's First Full Week in Peru

Written by Elder Jacob Avery, currently receiving training at the Peru Missionary Training Center of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Hola! Peru is much different than expected. The buildings are very boxy, we're on a tight schedule, the food is okay, we're surrounded by a big wall, and we work out in all of our free time. These things can make the MTC (Missionary Training Center) feel much like a prison haha! It's very busy, but I've gotten used to it.

Seeing the Spanish come together before our very eyes is super cool. On the first day there was no interaction between North Americans and Latinos, but now we talk to each other, and yell at each other from across campus, all the time.

There are six Elders in my room. Elder Larsen and I are companions, and the other four are native Peruvians. They are so funny. Elder Gonzalez is trying to learn English, so he always approaches me and points to some object, "How do you esay dis?"

"That's a flip flop."

"Flep fle?"

"Flip flop."

"Whu bout sandel?"

"That works, but sandals look more like what Jesucristo would wear."

"Oh! okay! Flop lip!"

Anyway, it's a blast and a very effective way to learn Spanish, or English, which ever you're trying to learn.

The campus is very nice and very well kept. It's made up of three buildings and has about 100-200 misioneros. The food is basically rice and potatoes. Some of the food is funky, but we're getting used to it. The Latinos say that the food in the city is nicer than the food in here, so we are looking forward to getting out into the field. In fact, Elder Larsen and I have been very excited to get into the field. Our first mock investigator was yesterday, and we feel like we nailed it. Plus, we already know the essentials in Spanish (bano - bathroom, comida - eat, jesucristo - Jesus Christ), so why wait another six weeks? :)

Our favorite way to introduce ourselves is, "Somos siervos del Senor" (We are servants of the Lord). In the words of Elder Winterton, "Somos siervos del Senor, so please don't shoot us or steal our cameras."

Quiero compatir mi testimonio que yo se que la iglesia es verdadera. Jose Smith fue un profeta de Dios y el evangelio de Jesucristo esta restaurado hoy en dia. Yo se que Jesucristo es nuestro salvador y es el hijo de Dios. En el nombre de Jesucristo, Amen.

(Translation: I want to share my testimony, that I know this Church is true. Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, and the Gospel of Jesus Christ is restored today. I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and is the son of God. In the name of Jesus Christ, Amen.)

Lessons in Peru...alarm clocks, traffic, and such (July 16, 2013)

Elder Avery's First Email from Peru (July 4, 2013)