Monday, February 27, 2017

Week 33 - Landlord Cut Off Our Water!!!


One more week and another month practically done! Time sure does fly! This week was super busy for us down here in Juliaca. First off, let me start with the big news! So as you may have seen last week, the house I was living in wasn’t exactly the best. Well to top that off, we didn’t have ANY water for about two weeks inside the house. We thought that our pump had gone out and were using rain water to flush the toilet and shower but, it turns out that the lady who owed the building was cutting our water because she wanted us to pay more money for the house each month, but we told her no because in the house contract we have, she legally couldn’t ask for more money. So, we decided that we really couldn’t do anything about it. We then commenced looking for a new house and found one. We got permission from the president’s wife to move and she was more than happy to let us move because she knew what a disaster it was. On Saturday, we moved to our new house. The new house is ten million times better and there is just such a greater spirit in the house because the old one was so nasty! Other than that, let me tell you about the rest of my week.

The one thing I learned from our previous house here in Juliaca is the importance of cleanliness.  In that dirty environment, it was harder to feel the Spirit.  The Spirit is easier to feel in a clean environment so thanks a lot Mom for always teaching me the importance of having a clean room back home even though there were times when I wasn’t so good at it.

This week I went and did some Zone Leader divisions and got the chance to go on divisions with my fellow Davis High School graduate, Elder Cook, in his sector of Allaviri. It was super fun because we never thought we would have the chance to be companions, but on divisions we were and it was an awesome time! We worked really hard and at the same time, had a lot of fun. He’s a great missionary and a great help to the Zone here in Juliaca.
Other than that we are getting ready to host a multi Zone Conference here in Juliaca with the Mission President, so being Zone Leaders here, we have to prep a lot for that. So we’ve been doing that as well.

A far as stories go, let me share a few of them with you. This week we found two new investigators named Nely and Melsy. They are a mother and daughter who are so incredibly receptive. We were teaching them the first lesson and they accepted everything. And at the end I just got a feeling to invite them to be baptized. They accepted and we are now working on getting them ready for that by trying to teach them all the lessons and help them with all of their doubts.

Most of you probably didn’t know, but here in Peru they have their own type of Chinese food. It is literally nothing at all like the stuff we have back in the states, but I am always super happy to try new foods. After eating it I can honestly say that Peruvian Chinese food is one of my favorite foods here. I thought it was super funny that even in Peru, I love the Chinese food more than anything even though it is not at all the same as what we have back home.
Being in the streets all day, every day, this week I had a really interesting experience. We were in the street and this man walked up to us randomly and asked us how the work was going. We’ve never seen him before and he isn’t a member here or anything. We asked his name, but he never responded to the question. My companion and I both thought it was very strange.

In closing, I just want to testify of the truthfulness of this work.  Each and every day I see miracles as a missionary. Seeing lives change has been one of the greatest blessings as a missionary. So many times throughout the day, I am blessed to see the Lord’s hand in each day. As one of his missionaries, I am so grateful for the way in which he helps me through each and every single day! Each of us can be his hands to bless others if we are just willing to become converted to him.


Elder Fawcett

Tried to send a video of our new apartment but it didn't go through so you will see it next week!

A Member Felt Bad How Awful our Apartment was So, 
They Gave us a Light Bulb to Make it Seem Better!

Sit Down in the Chair, Point at the Picture on the Wall You Like
and they Try to Cut it That Way!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Week 32 - Broken Water Pump and Food Issues!


This week was way crazy!  Let me give you all a quick run through of is and then I will share a few stories with you.  So, last Monday, I was in Cusco until Wednesday night for a special Leaders meeting with the Mission President.  It was pretty dang cool and all, but it was nice to get back to work here in Juliaca when it was finished.  While in Cusco; I saw my trainer Elder Iza who is probably one of my best friends in the mission.  He is doing alright but was having a hard time.  I guess his family is having problems back home and such and so he asked me to give him a blessing.  The blessing was super spiritual and it has seemed to help Elder Iza a lot.

While in Cusco, I had to take advantage of the fact that I could buy some sort of American food because none of it exists here in Juliaca.  So for lunch one day, we headed to McDonald’s and got some food.  Now, the food there isn’t exactly the same but it is pretty dang close.  So, I got some food and after eating a little, it just tasted super weird.  A lot of salt, and flavor that I just am not used to here in Peru because most of the food I eat isn’t nearly as flavorful as that!  Still it was really good though.

Also while in Cusco, my Companion decided to get some things on his skin looked at by the doctors.  He has some sort of thing on his back, don’t worry, they are Not contagious or anything but the doctor gave him little injections that have to be administered to get rid of it.  As his Companion, I’m the lucky one who gets to give him the injections!

When we got back to Juliaca, we came back to a problem.  Here in Peru, the water functions with a water pump that pumps the water into giant containers on the roof and from there into the house.  Well, it turns out that the pump is broken and so from Wednesday until today, (Monday), we have been without water.  Thankfully, it has been raining a lot since then so I found some buckets and put them on the roof to catch water because we are using the rain water to shower and to flush the toilet until the water pump is fixed.

On Friday, we had a Zone Meeting with all 18 missionaries and we had to teach them all of the things we learned for President Herrera.  One of the things was the new daily schedule.  It really didn’t change much for us because we still wake up at 6:30 and the only difference really is we do Daily Planning in the morning instead of at night.  Other than that, it just changed so that we modified the times we do things depending on what is going on.  We still go home by 9:30 and such so nothing really is different for us.  The Zone meeting went well and all is well!

As for stories this week, here are some.  We went to a house of a long time investigator this week named Trinidad.  She has been an investigator for a LONG time and hasn’t really ever kept any of the promises she made.  One of them was to go to Church.  After teaching here a lesson, I felt like asking her if we could pick her up to go to Church.  She thought about it for a second and agreed.  On Sunday, she came with us to Church for the very first time.

This week we were walking in the street when I noticed some people moving some really heavy things into a truck.  We dropped our bags and started to help them more the various items into the truck.  Though they gave us a weird look as we were helping them, we found that they just accepted the help and didn’t ask any questions.  After helping, they were really receptive to accepting a visit from us.  They are now our investigators!

As far as food goes here in Juliaca, well we are having a few problems with our Penchanista.  I won’t go into a lot of detail but let’s just say that the Mission President and his Wife are getting us a new one in a few weeks.  The four of us missionaries, me and 3 Latino’s, have been sick a lot after eating her food and have discovered flies and other bugs in our meals. We also just recently discovered that she wasn’t using clean water so I don’t dare drink anything at her house and I hope everything else gets hot enough when being cooked!

While in Church on Sunday, the Bishop once again came and asked me if I would talk in Sacrament Meeting for 20 minutes.  Of course I accepted and somehow I managed to talk for 20 minutes.  I have found that the fear of talking in front of people has completely disappeared since I have been on my mission.  Thanks to just getting asked 5 minutes before actually giving the talk in a foreign language, I have been able to overcome this fear thanks to our Heavenly Father’s help.  The Lord is definitely helping me every day and always blesses me with the things I need to succeed.

In closing this week, I just want to say that really the mission is changing me as a person in so many ways.  I have never been stretched to the limit as much as I am here!  The Lord has been with me, teaching me to be better and helping me.  It is crazy to think about where I have come compared to where I started.  My advice to all future missionaries it to not just go through the mission.  Let the mission go through you and you will see huge changes not only in those you teach but also in yourself.


Elder Fawcett

                                     So, Not Quite as Nice as Puno, But Here is Home In Juliaca

Yep, it Comes in the Same Box!

It Looks the Same and Tastes the Same
I Think?

The Juliaca Peru Zone

Elder Fawcett Back with Elder Iza in Cusco

Monday, February 13, 2017

Week 31 - First Week As a Zone Leader!!!

Hey Everyone:

What a week it has been! A lot of stuff happened so I will just get right to it!

Tuesday, I had to say goodbye to my good buddy Elder Barrios!  It was tough because he and I have become such great friends.  But, even harder than that is the fact that I had to say goodbye to my home for the past 6 months.  I Love Puno and all of the lifelong friends I had to leave there! Puno is a place where I have grown more as a person that at any other part of my life!  I will miss it so much along with all of the incredible people I met there!

The new adventure began as I got to Juliaca and got right to work!  Elder Aguilar, my new Companion, immediately began teaching me everything I would need to know about our Sector and about being a Zone Leader.  It is pretty different I will tell you all that!  It is a TON more stressful having to not only worry about the work in your own Sector, but now also having the stress of worrying about the entire Zone!  It was a stressful week, but I am learning and growing in ways I never imagined possible!

Now for a few highlights of the Week!
  • First off, 2 days after arriving in Juliaca, my Companion and I left for Cusco on Thursday to do divisions with the Assistant’s to the President!  It was way fun and I learned an awful lot from them.  I was way nervous to go, but it ended up being a super cool experience!  As a side note, the AP’s have a super nice house to live in, it almost felt like living in a Hotel compared to my new House in Juliaca but I will tell you more about that in a minute.
  • When we returned from Divisions in Cusco on Saturday, we got right back to work here in Juliaca.  While we were walking to the Church on Saturday night for an Elder’s Quorum activity, we had a man named Denis walk up to us and the first thing he said was “Hey, my Family is having troubles and I read on your website that you can help us have an Eternal Family."  That is way strange for Peru, people don’t surf the internet for that type of stuff but apparently he had been having problems in his Family and was now separated from his Wife and young Daughter and wanted to be happy as a Family.  He had found our Church on the Internet and had contacted Salt Lake City.  They had given him the address of the Church and he was waiting out front for us.  We took him into the Church and gave him the first lesson and he immediately accepted the invitation to be baptized.  He is really progressing fast and looks like a great investigator.
  • Now a couple of things about my new Companion Elder Aguilar, he is awesome!  He is from Lima Peru and only has a little while left on his mission.  In the picture below of the two of us, you might be able to see some of the drawings he has done. He is an awesome artist!
  • My house here in Juliaca is not quite as nice as the one in Puno but it will be ok!  We live right across the street from the Bus Terminal on the corner.  I will send pictures next week but a Google Map search can show you where we live.  Also, I am the only Gringo in the house with 3 other Latinos so it is pretty awesome!

As I write this, I am once again in Cusco today!  We left early this morning for Cusco to have a Special Leaders meeting with the Mission President until Wednesday!  Life as a Zone Leader is different and has lots of travel but it is great to serve.  My Trainer Elder Iza is here as well and I am SUPER Excited to see him after more than 3 months!

I just want to end by Sharing my Testimony of the Truthfulness of this Work!  My mission has been far from easy, but through my trials I have grown as a person and at the same time gained a knowledge of what it means to be a True Defender of our Savior Jesus Christ!  I Love Him and am so thankful for his perfect example in every aspect!!! I look to him as I go through the struggles of the daily life of a missionary!


Elder Fawcett

Click on the Link to See Where I Live!

Across the Street from my New House (Behind Me) in 
Juliaca Peru

Elder Fawcett with His New Companion Elder Aguilar

Monday, February 6, 2017

Week 30 - Changes!!


Well, my final week in Puno is now in the books! I know that you are all probably dying to know what my Change (Transfer) is and what exactly is going to happen to me. Well, let me tell you. I have a change to the Zone Juliaca in the Ward and Sector Alborada. My Companion is going to be Elder Aguilar from Lima, Peru. But that’s not all of the big news. I have been asked to serve as a Zone Leader for the Zone of Juliaca. I was absolutely incredibly shocked when I got the news of my change. It NEVER happens! It is so early in the mission to be asked to be a Zone Leader! I am very humbled because I know that I have a LOT more to learn in this new assignment and I know that I will learn a lot from it. In the Zone of Juliaca, there are 18 missionaries, 3 District Leaders, and my new Companion and I will be doing everything possible to help all of them. To be honest, I am really scared and nervous because I don’t even have 7 months yet in the mission field and I know that the Lord has A LOT for me to learn and experience in Juliaca. I myself know that alone, I cannot do this. My Spanish is not near perfect, my knowledge is growing each day, and I need to do better in so many things. I am not qualified, but I know that my Heavenly Father will help me fulfill this assignment in every aspect so that I can help all the members of my Zone.

As for my Son, as they say in the mission since I am his trainer, Elder Barrios will be staying in the Inca Pachacctec Ward and will be training a new missionary, which means that I will have a Grandson in the mission. HaHa! I am so thrilled for him to have the opportunity to train and I know that he is going to be a great trainer! It has been a blessing to have the chance to train him and watch him learn and grow.

As for some stories of the week, here are a few. So during the past few changes, I’ve had the opportunity to teach a return missionary and his wife who is not a member. They were not married when we first started teaching them and the wife began to have a desire to be baptized. It was then that we told them they needed to get married before she could be baptized. It took some time, but I am pleased to say that they were recently married. The wife now has the ability to be baptized and we have set her date for the first Saturday in March. The family which contains the husband, wife, and a son who is a year old, now are planning to be sealed for time and all eternity in the Lima Temple in March 2018. What a blessing it is to have the opportunity to share the message of the Gospel and help families be eternal!

One last story. So this week there is a special festival for the Catholic Church. Apparently down here in Puno they throw a HUGE festival for the virgin of Puno called the Virgen of the Candelaria. She is a statue or an idol or something like that. So they have dances and get crazy drunk to celebrate. Well let’s just say that today, P-day is the HUGE parade and celebration and it’s pretty dangerous. So the Mission President has told our whole Zone we have to spend P-day locked in the Church building because it’s dangerous due to all the drunks and the girl dancers don’t wear a lot of clothes if any so we were locked up during all of that today. Haha!

Anyway, thanks so much for all your support! I am really sad to leave Puno tomorrow (Tuesday) and drive an hour to my new Zone of Juliaca, but I am so thankful for all the experiences I’ve had here and for all the people I’ve met. My life has forever been changed for my time here in Puno!
I love you all so much!


Elder Fawcett

                                                            Announcement of Transfers!
                         Elder Fawcett Indicated the Hand Gestures and Reaction are a "Peru Thing"

Our Zone Locked Up at the Church Today!