Friday, August 23, 2013

First Messages from the Peru Lima East Mission!

August 5

I have made it to the mission! (i'm just going to apologize right now for typos. this spanish keyboard is rough...) i can't believe i haven't talked to any of you in a week and a half, time kinda just flies by here. man, it's going by fast!

So my trainer is hna johnson. She is from logan, utah and went to USU! crazy. also, she finished her own training the day she became my trainer, so we're kinda learning together. we get the weirdest looks here when we walk together down the streets. everyone always talks about our hair and eyes, and we're just like, ummm, gracias? ha ha we also teach english classes on wednesdays, so that's fun. people love it. i think... i can't really understand what's going on unless we're teaching a lesson. It's actually kind of a miracle. we taught our first lesson without any latina companion to a man named tino. He is AWESOME. everyone here is. anyways, we were teaching the plan of salvation. he had so many questions! ha but, somehow (the spirit) we were able to answer them all. He even said to us: i've been to a lot of churches, but none of them take the time to explain the scriptures to me like you guys do. WOWWWWW. i almost started crying the spirit was so strong in that moment. God knows what his children need to hear when they need to hear it, and i have the privilege of being the means of sharing that in the moment it needs to happen. I've always heard about stuff like this happening on missions, but now i'm experiencing it, and let me tell you, there's nothing like it anywhere else in the world.

well, here are some things i have learned:

1. in south america, food=love. we are always eating, they just love feeding us! and the food is amazing. we have a woman who cooks all our meals for us. breakfast is usually pasta and bread and this amazing sweet milk. then for lunch we have soup, rice, potatoes, chicken, bread, juice, salad, and fruit (like three courses, EVERY time). by the time dinner rolls around, i'm basically forcing it down ha ha it's usually more potaties rice and chicken. it's all delicious. you might not recognize me when i get back. just look for the morbidly obese woman in a skirt.

2. you can live without a lot of the things you would think are necessities. like toilet paper and warm water and indoor heating. it's not so fun, but also, not as brutal as you might think.

3. you can love people the first time you meet them. there is an investigator we have, her name is cathy and she's 9. she's probably the smartest 9 year old in the world. i got to teach her about the Book of Mormon. I now know what God means when he says to come unto him like a child. She kept asking questions about Nephites and Lamanites and Joseph Smith, and how she could learn more. She wants to be baptized! Wow, she's the best.

4. Most of all, i've learned what it's like to be happy. like, TRULY happy. when you can see someone light up when you start talking to them about things that have changed your own life for the better, and you realize that they know how important your message is: that god LOVES them, and wants them to come back to him. whew... i can barely see the keyboard right now through my tears of joy ha ha. its actually kinda embarrassing, i hope no one looks at me...

sorry about the lack of communication! ahh i thought they were sending a pic of us with our mission pres to let you know where we are. i'm a real time missionary now!

anyways, i hope all is well at home. I'm going to snap a pic of all your emails and read them tonight! thank for your love, i think of you all often, and always try to make you proud.

love from peru!
Hna Bennett

First House in Lima Peru
There's graffiti everywhere...

i like to think the one on our house says
D&C 10 ['y' means 'and' in Spanish] ha
but it's probably someone's names.

people are very romantic here. ha

Hermanas Bennett, Parra, and Johnson - in a fake Macchu Pichu

My first baptism i got to see here! 

My first zone!


August 12

Missions are so weird! One minute I'm floating on air, and the next i feel like just curling up in my bed and crying a little. But, i wouldn't come home if i had the chance (sorry, no offense to anyone, but i gotta do what i gotta do). We have 2 investigators that are really keeping me going here. One's name is Alex. he suffers from depression. we found him from a reference from the MTC. he has always liked to learn from the Bible, even as a little boy. We taught him about the restauration, and he was just like, 'Claro!' ('of course!') and he will be baptized after we teach him about the Book of Mormon. I wish you could meet him.

The other is Abel. He was baptized Catholic as a baby, but hasn't really been to any church since. He told us that he doesn't really know Jesus, but he is just so eager to learn everything we teach! I wish i could describe him better, but i have run out of computer time ha ha this is a TERRIBLE email.

well, real quick: there are 4 sisters living in the same house: the other two are latinas. they BLAST "come thou fount" like nonstop every morning during study time ha. we live in the house of betty, who is Catholic and extremely opinionated. i love her though.

all is well here. difficult at times, but so so worth it. love you all.

i will try to write a better one next week! and with more pictures, yeah?

Godspeed all!
Hna Bennett


Still a few minutes left

we get to go to the temple once every 3 months ha.

i think i¡ve learned that i never want to live outside of utah ha ha the city is definitely not for me. i love the people, but i'm still warming up to the PLACE.

also, i finally have learned what a cockroach looks like in real life! yeah...

you don't need to put any more money on my visa for now, we're not supposed to use money from home, they give us 87 soles to live off every month.

things are different here! i'm still adjusting, and trying to speak spanish. sometimes i have to look back on how much spanish i knew when i got here compared to now, and then i'm grateful.

it's a hard work to do, but i'm grateful for my call here! love you! talk to you next week (let me know if you can read the letters i sent you a pic of ha ha that sounds so weird)


[Shae has come up with a new trick for getting letters sent via email quickly - she writes them on paper and takes a picture of them beforehand then just uploads the picture. Here they are (addressed to mom and dad, but stuff here you will probably all want to read)


I don't want to alarm you, but these are the motos that we use to get around. i usually just close my eyes whenever i'm in a vehicle ha ha


August 19

Hola! Well, Perù is warming up i think :( it's turning into springtime, and i'm already dying ha. Here's some info on how things work in my mission:

hopefully everything's clear on how to send letters. when you send me one, use the mission home address (on the right hand side of the blog). Dearelder letters are also sent to this address. I get all my mail once a week at our district meetings, which are usually thurs or tues. sometimes they come quickly, sometimes it take weeks ha, there's not really any way to tell why as far as i know. Packages usually get here, it just takes a loooong time.
 so far i've only seen 3 of the straight up terrifying, hairless, mohawks wild dogs. But there are seriously dogs EVERYWHERE. There's this one huge dog that follows us every time we leave our pensionista's house, and every time we get to out street, this dog starts fights with other dogs! it's the worst. yesterday, i almost got caught in the middle of one.... i don't mean to scare you! i really am fine, but the dogs are a fear of mine here ha.

right now, My companion, Hna Johnson, and I live in a house with a woman named Beti. Her husband died recently, so she wanted someone to live with her. And now, there's four missionaries living there! The two other sisters are Hna Parra and Hna Pecho. They are actually the sister leaders for the mission, so they help us out a lot. sometimes Hna Johnson and I have problems understanding people, and sometimes people only talk to us because we're white, and there are areas where we have to avoid just because we're to north americans... BUT we have had some successes that I know wouldn't have come if we weren't together. God has taken care of us every step of the way. True, it takes some time to weed out the people who are only interested because we're two Gringas, but we're figuring this mission thing out!

Right now, we have an investigator named Jaime. He was practicing Hare Krishna when we first starting talking to him. In the first lesson. he agreed to be baptized! His baptismal date is september 7. He actually has a daughter who lives in the US and is a member. He came to church yesterday, and we had an appointment with him aftwerwards. We went to find him at the park we usually teach him in, but he wasn't there. So we called him, and he said he was waiting at the chapel. When we got there, we found him singing with a group of men in the ward ha ha! his first day at church and he already was part of the choir. This guy is GOLDEN! and even though we don't have the language down, he still understands us. There are definitely people here who are prepared before we even get to them, and it's so cool when we find them.

There have been a lot of stories like this, i wish i could tell you all of them... but i have them all in my journal, and i can't wait to tell everyone about them when i get back. Which is in 16 short months?? Que pasó?! I honestly can't believe it's already been two months since I left for Perú. My time is so short here. I think the key to make every day count is to realize that, as missionaries, we are sharing THE most important message that can be shared: that God lives and loves us, and wants to talk to us! He uses latter day prophets to do this, and he also answers our prayers! The coolest thing is to experience someone offering their first prayer. Sometimes they're nervous, but every time, i feel like it's the most beautiful prayer i've every heard.


[This week's ingenous emailedpictureletter (EPL - the official acronym for when this method of communication become commonplace and she patents it):]


Here is another pic of our house (mostly for Mom... not all graffiti is scary!)
my street, and one of the many parks here

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