Monday, April 24, 2017

Week 41 - Size 15 in Peru

Hola,

Time sure seemed to pass super crazy this week! I am now entering the last week of the change and next P-Day we have changes. So this week is going to be very busy getting ready for that. First off, let me tell some cool stories and experiences for the week.
So one of the super cool things about my mission is that a lot of the people in the older generation know and can speak Quechua, the ancient language of the Inca Empire. It happens so often when we are frequently out contacting people and when someone doesn’t want to listen to us, they start speaking in this language. Well, since I bought a dictionary to translate from Spanish to Quechua, I have learned various phrases and words. So this past week we had an old man who started to just speak Quechua to us and I didn’t understand much of what he said. I just knew how to respond with very, very little I know. When I did, his eyes got wide and then he started speaking in Spanish to us. Long story short, we got his address and we are going to pass by and visit him.

As well, there is a lady in our Ward who is a member with several other family members. We found out that her Mom however is not. So we set up an appointment to pass by and teach her Mom. When we went to the house, we greeted the Mom, but quickly realized that she didn’t speak a word of Spanish… just Quechua! It was then that we also found out the daughter spoke both Spanish and Quechua, so we asked her if she would be willing to translate for us. She agreed and we began teaching, her daughter translating as we did so.

This week we also had a very unique experience with one of our investigators names Gonzalo. After teaching a lesson in the nighttime, it is very common for the investigator to serve you something to drink. Well, most people don’t drink coffee here in Peru, but they do drink a TON of tea. As we sat there, we were served mugs of a drink that we didn’t know. As I was served my mug, I got the distinct impression to not drink it, as well as my Companion, Elder Melo. It was then that we were told it was green tea and we had to tell him we couldn’t drink it. The funny part is after he offered us Black tea which we had to reject and then coffee, which we had to reject as well. In the end, we ended up drinking just a cup of ECCO (Toasted Barley Drink).

Lately it seems to have been really difficult to get investigators that will progress really well. It seems we have met and taught so many new people, but no one seems to progress at all. This past week after doing a fast with Elder Melo, we had a visit with our investigator named Denis. After the visit, we were finally able to set a baptismal date with him. I am so grateful to know that prayer really does work and I know that it really can make miracles happen.

Elder Melo and I have been super crazy busy lately it seems with doing Zone stuff because this past week we found out that President Herrera is opening another sector in our Zone. Making it a total of 22 missionaries and one of the biggest Zones in the mission. So we have been crazy busy getting ready for that to happen with the changes next Monday.

Another quick experience I want to tell you about has to deal with some new shoes I was able to acquire this past week.  Now every day, we do a Lot of walking on dirt roads and although I am only coming up on 10 months in the mission field and I brought 2 new pairs of shoes with me, one of the pairs is just not holding up as good as the other ones are! (Elder Fawcett mentioned the pair that is not holding up but we took that out, if you want to know which pair not to buy, just ask his Mom). Now I have a size 15 foot and most Peruvian's have a shoe size that is half of that.  Well, they have a market down here in every City that is like the left overs from what would be the DI back home.  Well while in the market this week, I saw these brown shoes that were huge compared to all the others and when I picked them up, I saw that they were size 15 Rockport’s and were just like brand new.

In closing, I just want to testify how precious the time of a missionary is. Time goes by super-fast. Every day it is so important to make the most of it because each day is one day less I have to be a missionary. I Love having the chance to serve the Lord in Juliaca Peru along with all the missionaries here.

Love,

Elder Fawcett


Amazing How the Lord Will Provide






For Those in His Service!!!





Elder Fawcett on the Roof of His Apartment,
He Forgot to Tell Us Why He Had a Flag

Monday, April 17, 2017

Week 40 - Super P-Day

Hola,

I hope all of you are doing Super Great, down here in Juliaca it has been a very long and stressful week due to so many things going on. This past week we had the chance to do our Super P-Day with President Herrera which was a TON of fun. We went to the Floating Islands in Puno once again and we also went and played a lot of really fun games. Overall, I had a great time! As well, this week we had interviews with President Herrera and a Mulitzone Conference with him as well. It was really busy, but overall a great experience! Now for a bunch of stories for the week.

So this week my Companion, Elder Melo and I were out proselyting when a super drunk guy holding a bottle of beer walked up and started talking to us. He kept on insisting that we come inside the shop and have a drink with him. We told him that we didn’t drink, so that was when he walked inside and bought a big 2 liter of Inca Kola and asked if we could drink that. Laughing, my companion and I agreed and walked inside to find that this guy was all alone getting drunk. We sat down and the man told us we weren’t allowed to leave until we finished the entire 2 Liter bottle. As we sat there, we began to teach this man about the basic things that we as members believe in. As well, we began to ask the man what he believed in. After talking to him for a while, the guy still drinking his bottle of beer and us drinking the Inka Kola, I felt like I should ask him why he was drinking. He began to explain that his wife had died and that it was all he had to forget and feel better. That was then when we started a quick overview of The Plan of Salvation and explained that someday he would see her again. We finished the 2 liter bottle and set up another opportunity to visit this guy when he wasn’t so drunk.

Another experience was as Elder Melo and I have been teaching a man named Darlin, we have been amazed by how well he is accepting everything that we have taught him. He is progressing super well and it is amazing to see his progress. Not only that, but we normally teach him on his break at his work and this past week we found out that his Boss Lucio is a member who hasn’t been to Church in like twenty years or so. Not only that, but this man also was a return missionary. So as we have been teaching these two guys this past week, we invited them both to come to church with us. It was truly an amazing experience to watch this man come to church after not coming for such a long period of time.

This past week was the Holy Week (I think that’s what it is called in English), to remember the week of the sacrifice and crucifixion of the Savior. During this week a lot of members of the Catholic Church have big parade type things to remember this event. As we were out proselyting, a lady stopped us and asked if we were The Mormons. We said we were and also clarified the real name of the Church. She told us she had a question for us. She asked us where our crosses were, why we didn’t wear them, or why our Chapel didn’t display them. It was then that I remembered a talk President Hinckley gave about the cross and I knew how to answer her question. I testified to her that we believe that our Savior Lives. We believe that the Savior rose from the tomb on the third day and that he continues to live. She really liked that answer and we also set up an appointment with her.

This past week our Bishop called and asked me if I would be the main speaker on Easter Sunday. I agreed, but felt really nervous since I would be speaking on such a special day. I spent a lot of time praying and pondering what I should speak on, when I got the impression that I should talk about something that distinctly differentiates us about our believes and about what the Savior did during this sacred week. As Sunday rolled around, I felt like I should talk about the things that the Savior did throughout the week, but when I got to the three days after his crucifixion, I felt really inspired to talk a lot about exactly what the Savior was doing in the spirit world during those three days.  As I testified that the Savior had begun the work for the dead during those three days in the Spirit World, I felt such a powerful spirit knowing that My Ancestors were helping carry out that work now.

In Closing, I just want to share my testimony that I know that our Savior Lives. He was Resurrected and he Lives today, I am so thankful for him and the knowledge I have of him. I love him dearly and am so grateful for the trust he has in me to be one of his representatives in Peru. I testify of the truthfulness of this work and of the incredible miracles I see each day!

Love

Elder Fawcett

Elder Fawcett and Elder Cook, Davis High School Class Mates



Multi-Zone Conference















My Zone at the Conference



Mission Peru Cusco (MPC)















My Zone On the Bus to the Dock













Elder Fawcett
Skinnier Now From When He Left!












Various Elders From My Zone
.









Entire Multi-Zone, Mission President and Family





Various Elders and Sisters of My Zone











Elder Fawcett and Elder Melo
Taking It Easy on the Floating Islands







Elders Mallqui, Fawcett, Cutipa and Melo
.














Monday, April 10, 2017

Week 39 - Teaching in the "Hood" of Juliaca

Hola,

What a week full of TONS of hard work! My companion and I are super exhausted due to working super hard this week. The sad thing is that we don’t exactly have P-Day today because on Friday we are having a Special P-Day with President Herrera and going to the Floating Islands following the a Multi-Zone Conference on Thursday. This week was seriously incredible because my Companion and I found several new and very good investigators. One such investigator named Darlin, we found when we were out contacting this week. We were out knocking on doors and street contacting when a guy walked past us. I felt like I should talk to him, but seeing as my Companion was about to knock on a door, I decided to not. After contacting a house without any success whatsoever, I immediately got this feeling that we needed to go back and contact the guy I had felt prompted to talk to earlier. I told Elder Melo and he said we should back track to see if we could find him. We began to literally sprint to try and find this guy! After looking for about 10 minutes without any luck, we decided we wouldn’t find him. So feeling pretty bad and like I had missed out on a prompting, I prayed and asked for forgiveness for the prompting I had not acted upon. Later that day after visiting some investigators, we saw the same guy again. This time I acted on the prompting to contact him. We are now currently teaching Darlin and as many would say, he is a golden investigator and is progressing very well.

As well this week, we were visiting an Area of our Sector that I would say is “The Hood” of Juliaca. In this area it is very poor. The streets smell like garbage and there is a feeling that is very interesting in this part of town. While we were teaching one of our investigators named Tanaya, there was a park type of area right next to her home. In this park, we saw people smoking pot, doing drugs and drunk beyond belief. As we were teaching there seemed to be so many bad things going on around us. A lot of things that go against everything we teach. As we taught this lady, I felt the Spirit very powerfully as I testified of the Truthfulness of the Restoration. As I sat there, I realized that in the world we are always going to have those moments. Moments in which those around us are doing things that are against what we believe and represent. It was in this moment that I realized the Spirit can dwell with those who are striving to represent the good, even when the bad is all around.

It has been really cool throughout my mission to watch and realize that I am changing and growing in a lot of ways. One of these ways is the type of food I like eating. At this point now, I have been eating strange foods for months now and it just doesn’t really faze me anymore. I have eaten rice for I think every meal for the past several months and to be completely honest, I always find a way to make it interesting.  Well as I think I’ve mentioned before, I’ve been eating a lot of octopus tentacles lately since my Penchanista owns a restaurant that serves ceviche. Well, since being in this Area, I’ve found out that a mixture of rice and octopus isn’t really bad especially when you add in a side of cow tongue or whatever other part of the animal it may be!  So basically, I have found there really isn’t any food I can’t handle eating.

The missionary life is a life so different from any other. Eating strange things, walking all day, speaking another language and living high standards isn’t exactly easy. There is a lot of missionaries who have found a lot of ways to try and change the mission rather than let the mission change them. Living such a different life each and every single day makes me realize why our Heavenly Father calls such Young People to do something so much different than what they are use too. Missionary work is not just about changing lives of others forever, it is also meant to change yourself forever.  I Love this Work and for the experiences I am Blessed to have each day. I am thankful to have the Guidance of our Heavenly Father to help me know what it is he would have me do. I love you all so much and for the chance I have to be a missionary in this time here in Juliaca Peru!

Love,   
                                                                                                                   
Elder Fawcett




                                                 The Street Meat Market Outside Our Church Building!!!


Elder Fawcett Sitting in Their New House













Guy on the Street Made this for Me for Only $4!!













Typical Downtown Street Here in Juliaca









Another Typical Street













Ties are Really Cheap Here, ~40 Cents,
I Only Show My More Bizarre "P-Day" Ties
But I Also Have Some Really Nice Ones!!

Monday, April 3, 2017

Week 38 - Translating For Doctors

Hola.

Hey everyone!  Man what a very crazy week it has been for us down here in Juliaca!  On of the biggest highlights of the week was that we got to go to Cusco for a Leadership Training Meeting with President Herrera, which was a ton of fun!  As well, we had General Conference and since the Stake President and I are good friends, he was able to help set up a room where all of us Gringos could watch it in English.  Not because we don’t like or want to watch it in Spanish, but because it was really special and amazing having the chance to watch and hear the words of God’s Prophets in our own native tongue.

Now for a few quick stories of the week.  Some doctors from the United States who are LDS, came here to Juliaca this week to give a class to the Doctors in Juliaca.  The class was on the birth of babies because here in Peru, there is a huge problem with babies dying right after birth.  The night before the class, I got a call and was told by the Assistants that President Herrera wanted me and a couple of other missionaries to be there to help translate from English to Spanish because not many of the Doctors could speak Spanish.  So, me and a few other missionaries had the chance to go and translate for these Doctors.  It was really cool to be able to help teach these Peruvian Doctors by translating and seeing how grateful and thankful they were to learn.  One of the things we helped translate and teach the Doctors was what to do if a baby is born and is not breathing.  We were able to learn and teach the Peruvian Doctors how to put this mask on the face of the baby an how to slowly pump air into the lungs of the baby. It was overall a really neat and amazing experience to be able to help these Americans teach the Peruvian Doctors how to save human lives!

Throughout my time here in Juliaca, I have been working with several amazing and incredible people who are so ready to hear the message of the Restored Gospel.  As I have been able to find and teach people here in Juliaca, I have realized how ready the people are here to hear God’s word.  These people are so humble but at the same time so happy with what very little earthly possessions they have.  They all seem to say that they are missing something in their lives and we as missionaries know exactly what this is.

On other quick story form this past week occurred when my Companion, Elder Melo and I, were coming back to Juliaca after our Leadership Training Meeting in Cusco.  There was this young American couple probably like 26-27 years old who were lost!  They literally had no idea where they were.  They were trying to get a bus to travel to Puno and visit the floating islands but due to the fact that neither of them knew or could speak any Spanish, they couldn’t exactly get to there desired location.  That was when my Companion and I felt the prompting to go and help them.  We were able to help them by showing them where to go and how much to pay etc.  They were so grateful and even accepted to have the missionaries visit them back in New York when they got home.

After thinking about this experience, I realized that there was a greater and deeper meaning to this experience.  As the Lord’s Ordained Representatives, we walk the streets each day looking for those who are lost, those who need and want the Restored Gospel in their lives.  They want our help but they just don’t know where to look and find it.  I Love this Gospel and for the chance I have to look for God’s lost children every day and to be able to share his message with them.  I am so blessed to be here at this time to Proclaim His Truth.

Love

Elder Fawcett


Teaching Supplies Brought by the American Doctors











We Help the Doctors Teach the Peruvian's
How to Get the Babies Breathing!






Elder Fawcett with the Peruvian Doctors
and Other Elders









Not Quite Sure What This One is,
Although Elder Fawcett Doesn't
Need Glasses!