Monday, December 26, 2016

Week 24 - The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!

Hola mi Familia y Amigos:

So, when all the world was celebrating Christmas and all, Elder Barrios and I have been working hard to find more people to teach!  Contacting is actually something that I’ve come to like a Whole lot in the mission.  Talking to random people who think you’re a salesman, thinking you wanna rob them or people who know exactly who you are but don’t want any part of it!  Contacting is ALWAYS the best, hahaha!  But with all the contacting we did this week, we also got contacted!  On Wednesday morning, Elder Barrios and I were doing our morning studies when we heard someone knocking at out gate below!  We opened the window and there stood 3 Jehovah witness missionaries.  Without knowing who we were, they asked us if they could give us a pamphlet.  We agreed and left the house to grab the pamphlet from them.  On the way out, I grabbed three Restoration pamphlets and went below. They shared their interesting message about the family and then… well we shared ours! It was actually very spiritual and we accepted their pamphlet but only agreed to accept it if they accepted ours.  Who knows what will happen, but you never know how a simple pamphlet could get someone interested in learning the truth!

As well as contacting, we had an awesome Christmas activity in which we shared gifts, food and activities with small VERY POOR village children outside of Puno.  This village barely had anything… let alone food to eat, clothes to wear or toys for the kids to play with.  In this activity, we had the chance to share all of those things with the kids. The activities were at the Elementary School and literally the entire village turn out as we played games with the kids and other activities while eating a huge meal.  One of the coolest aspects of the activities is that we had the chance to give the toys to the all of the kids individually!  It was one of the most incredible experiences I have had as I watched the kids eyes light up with excitement as they saw us with the toy in our hands. One of the boys (6 years old) that I gave a toy action figure to asked me what my name was, I told him “Elder Fawcett”, he then took his little toy action figure and started playing with his friends, referring to the action figure as “Elder Fawcett”.  I got tears in my eyes as I realized how much I’ve been given in my life!  The Lord has blessed me beyond measure!  With an immense amount of blessings that others don’t have!  The see the happiness of others is something that has always make me happy in life!  Especially on my mission!

Sunday (Christmas), I spent time talking to those who mean the world to me!  As I shared this time, it made me realize more and more why I am here and why I had to be the one to say goodbye to everything!  I have been given much, so I too must give!  2 years is a small price to pay to help others be happy for all eternity!  No matter how hard this gets, I will press onward knowing that the small price of sacrifice that I am paying is going to bless the lives of those I meet here in Peru!  For I truly know that the happiness these people feel through the service of a 19 year old guy from Kaysville Utah, will have a great effect on the happiness I feel throughout the Eternities!

Love,

Elder Fawcett


P.S. As I confessed to my family yesterday… one of the things I broke the ice on is the fact that I’ve eaten a CAT!  Just thought I should come clean on that!  Love You all haha!  Hasta Luego!

           Finding the True Meaning of Christmas!!!


          Early Christmas Morning in Puno Peru

Village Elementary School Buildings









Front of the Village Elementary School















Inside the Classrooms






White Board in Classroom





Playing Musical Chairs with the Kids





Last 3 Standing!!!



Elder Fawcett with Some of the Kids










School Kids and Zone Missionaries














Monday, December 19, 2016

Week 23 - Big Changes!!!

Hola mi Familia y Amigos:

So, this week was a week with great big changes, first and foremost, my companion and son in the mission (we say that when a trainer is training a new missionary), got Emergency Transferred.  No I did NOT do anything wrong and no it is not my fault whatsoever.  Elder Sarceño has really been having a hard time here in Puno and is used to a much warmer climate and it is cold here in Puno and he is also having a hard time with the local food here as well.  So this week we got a call and the Mission President felt that he needed to be moved to a different area. So he is being transferred to the jungle part of our mission.

Anyways, I received a new Companion who is absolutely AMAZING! Really different from Elder Sarceño.  His name is Elder Barrios and he is from Guatemala as well.  His story thus far in the mission is very interesting.  He had Visa troubles so, he had to serve one change in Guatemala and then he came here to our mission late into the transfer we are in now.  So, as he entered the mission, there wasn’t a Companion for him so for the past 3 weeks he has been here, he’s been living in the Mission Office and just going on divisions with random missionaries until this thing happened with Elder Sarceño.  Then the Mission President sent him down here to me!

He is a new missionary, so I am still training him and am his trainer of the mission.  Pretty crazy story but after spending a lot of time on my knees, I know that I was supposed to end up with Elder Barrios in the end anyways. 

So, other than that let me tell you a few little stories about this past week:
  • This week we had the Christmas party with the Mission President and his family and it was amazing.  It was with half of the Zones in the mission so I saw a bunch of Missionaries from my MTC group and it was awesome!  Each Zone prepared a skit to share, a song and a video!  It was really fun!  Then we had lunch and President Herrera gave us all a santa hat and a pin with the mission logo, which is way super cool!
  • This week, we had a way awesome experience where our investigator Jhon accepted to be baptized on the 31st of December!  For the past 2 weeks, we have been trying to find him to teach him but hadn’t been successful until this week we finally found him!  As we taught him, there was a great change in him.  Before, he was really hesitant about everything we taught him but this time he accepted everything and now is wanting to be baptized.  I know without a doubt in my mind that our Heavenly Father changed his heart and helped him have the desire to accept our message!
  • With my new responsibilities as District Leader, I am responsible for giving baptismal interviews for all the people in my District.  I had my first with a Lady this week and it was absolutely incredible.  It is so incredible to see how prepared these people truly are!  It truly is the plan of the living God!

Thank You all so very much for everything!  For all your prayers on my behalf, I feel them every day!  I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and pray it will be safe and amazing for all of you!

Love

Elder Fawcett

  

My New Companion
Elder Barrios and Elder Fawcett










Fellow Davis High Dart!!
Elder Fawcett and Elder Cook






President Herrera and his Family
Our Zone at the Christmas Party!!
.












MTC Group
Elders Fawcett, Coil, Walker, Peña, Bever, Haws and  Hatfield








Present from the President






Mission Pin



Mission Christmas Hat






Now I told you the Dogs here are Mean,
Watched this Dog Kill a Chicken on the Street
Better the Chicken than Me!!!




Monday, December 12, 2016

Week 22 - Onward

Hola mi Familia y Amigos:

This week was a great change for me from the previous few weeks. After an immense amount of prayer, faith and patience, my companion is starting to change… A LOT! After the past few weeks issues, things really turned around this week. We are now able to work hard and the Spirit is helping us find those who truly do need this message. I know that the Lord truly does answer prayers but not only that, I know he can change the heart of ANYONE! 

So, this week as we began to work as hard as possible, we got some terrible news. Lucero (Age 12) and her Mom Geoanna were going to have their baptisms this Saturday. They were ready and had their interviews already! But, the Dad and husband decided that he wanted NOTHING to do with us and so he told us to never come back. It not only crushed every ounce of me, but it also destroyed his daughter Lucero. She cried and told us she really wanted to be baptized and knew everything that we had taught her was the truth. I brought tears to my eyes as I looked at her and promised her that one day, she would have the opportunity to be baptized. I felt as I said this that this had been part of our Heavenly Father’s Plan all along. Though I won’t have the privilege of seeing her baptized, I know that someday there will be others to come and baptize ALL of the family. But for some reason, it was not meant to be at this time. 

This week I had another story that really affected me. It was later in the evening around 7:30 when there was a big group of drunk men that started yelling insults at us and about the church. They started throwing stuff and getting pretty aggressive. Not one moment did I feel afraid. It got to the point where they were blocking the path ahead where we needed to pass. As we approached, I felt I just needed to keep going, so I did even though my companion, Elder Sarceño, wanted to flee. Then one of the man yelled, “What do you Mormons want anyways!” That’s when I felt prompted to say what I said. I told them that “we are here because you’re Savior and Redeemer Jesus Christ Loves You!” That was all I said and we passed by and nothing more was spoken or said of any of them. 

Experiences like this have ready defined my mission, as I have learned to become a True Defender of my Faith and my older brother Jesus Christ. No matter where I am, he has lifted me and carried me! 

Now on a little less serious note, I want to tell you a few things about Peru that you might not know about. First off, you can’t find fresh milk down here. Stores with cold gallon milk jugs just don’t exist. Instead, they have cans of milk that are canned similar to like sweet and condensed milk is at home but it is just regular milk. To be extremely honest, it is really not very good to drink. When you open the can it really doesn’t smell very good but we have to drink it when it is given to us and it is really hard to drink. Another thing that is pretty interesting is the cheese which I am showing you a picture of, it comes in big round blocks and it is white. They don’t refrigerate it and it just sits out all day and it is not very good. We eat it a lot on bread but I really don’t care for it. That is the only cheese they have down here, they don’t have any of the other kinds that are at home. One last thing to tell you about is one day we were out tracting at the very top of our Sector and I noticed this stray white lamb that was all by itself. I recognized it as belonging to one of our neighbors and it had obviously gotten free. It kind of reminded me as to why I am here, as it was a lost Lamb separated from the flock so I decided to catch it and take it back to the owner. 

I just want to end by thanking everyone for all of the thoughts and prayers on my behalf. I testify that Jesus Lives, he is a perfected being who loves each and every one of us because he understands each of us! I Love you all! 

Love 

Elder Fawcett



                                                          My Tracting Sector in Puno Peru

My Wonderful Penchanista, Ana
Cooks my Meals!!!










My Penchanista's House
We Eat Here 3 Times a Day


White Cheese I Talked About








Cheese on Bread we Eat A Lot


Beans and Rice, Don't Know What Meat
.










The Lost Little Lamb
I Am Here Rescuing the Lost Sheep!!!


Neighbors Funny Dog,
Sleeps on the Roof All Day


Overlooking my Sector
.

Monday, December 5, 2016

Week 21 - A Trial of My Faith

Hola mi Familia y Amigos:

When you have difficulties in life you ask why?  Why me?  It’s not different on the mission.  With having a difficult companion that I am training, I have asked why me?  Why am I with him?  In my difficulties during my life, I have spent countless hours on my knees and it has been no different here.

During one particular very difficult day, I spent a long time praying.  That night I had a dream, I dreamed that I was in an interview with the Mission President in which he told me “Elder Fawcett, you have given him because he needs you and you need him.”  I woke up and I have taken that as my answer to my prayers.  He needs me and I need him!  Though now it might not seem like it, there IS a reason for everything so every day I try my best to learn from him what I am meant to learn as well as I try to teach him so he can learn what he needs to.

Despite the difficulties, I’ve seen miracles after the trial of my faith.  There have been days this week where we walked all day to countless houses that we had appointments at just to get the door slammed in our faces or for them to not even be home.  But one day after having no success, we went and visited our recent convert Kevin.  Luckily, he was home!  We entered the house and met one of his aunts named Marisol who just happen to be moving in to live with them.  We taught her the lesson of the Restoration and at the end, I felt prompted to invite Marisol to be baptized.  She was a little hesitant but accepted that if she came to the knowledge of the truthfulness, she’d by baptized.  So after a day of complete frustration, we found a new investigator and at the same time invited her to be baptized.

I’ve learned a lot on my mission that the blessings of hard work don’t always pay off when you want it too.  Sometimes, the Lord simply wants to try our faith and test us to see if we will keep trying.  Eventually we will see the reward if we keep working at it and that’s what I know will happen with my companion as well.

Here are a few funny and interesting things from this week:
  • They don’t have much Christmas stuff down here, but Elder Haws (from the other companion set in my apartment) and I found the garland stuff for railings, took some wire coat hangers and made our own homemade Christmas tree.  To be honest, it honestly looks pretty good!
  • People down here like to try and take advantage of me because I’m white and they think I only speak English.  So, I was in a little market trying to buy something when the guy tried to sell it for 50 soles.  Speaking in English, he tried to tell me how good of a deal it was.  I responded back to him in Spanish and told him that I would buy it for 25 soles…no more than that.  He looked at me stunned and agreed.  So, if anyone wants any help buying stuff in South America in the future, I’m all in for that.
  • So we put all of the garbage in our house in a big bag and the garbage man comes around every other day (No paper allowed in the toilets so it is good to get rid of every other day).  Anyway when the garbage man comes, he play music and that is how you know that the garbage man is there.  At our house, he come really early in the morning and he plays his music.  My first days here I was really confused because I would hear this music in the mornings.  Now the music is not what you would think, it is the same music that the Ice cream truck would play at home.  The ironic thing is that they don’t have ice cream trucks here.  So I have a whole different meaning for when I hear that music.
  • Last thing I want to mention is an experience we had this week while walking by the park.  There were 4 boys out playing basketball and they challenged me and my companion to a game.  Now the basketball standards down here are only 9 feet tall so I am able to dunk the ball pretty easily.  We accepted their challenge and they wanted me and my companion to verse them but my companion has never played basketball so it was more like me against the 4 of them.  We ended up beating them and we got to share a message with them as a result so it turned out pretty fun.

Thank you all so very much for all of the support and prayers!  I hope everyone has a happy and safe holiday season.

Love


Elder Fawcett


            A Tour of Our Apartment!!!

When it Rains it Pours!!!
Suiting Up to Go Out!!









A Little Creativity and
We Have a Christmas Tree





Our Tree Even Has Lights!!!











Merry Christmas, Elder Fawcett and Elder Haws