Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Davi - Just a Gringa

December 30, 2013

Just a Gringa

On Christmas Eve, we were walking to visit a less active, and this kid was walking in the same direction, so we walked together and talked.  He is 14, and was nervous that we were talking to him because he had never talked to a gringa before haha.  But after a little bit, he proceeded to tell us his story.  His mom had died giving birth to him, and his dad has had hard feelings (it sounded like) toward him his whole life because of it.  So he is being raised by his sister, and he was totally alone on Christmas Eve.  We testified that he could meet his mom, and he said, Really?  And we testified more of the love God has for him.  How special he is, and that no matter what he feels, that he is never EVER alone. I just kept saying that.  You aren’t alone, you aren’t alone.  He wouldn’t give us his address, because he was scared of his sister, but he promised to meet us at the church for a baptism on Saturday.  I was fighting tears so hard, and started bawling after we gave him our chifles and chocolate and parted ways. And he was there at the baptism!  And Marcos, the sweetest kid ever, one of the ones in our mission prep class, sat with him and made him feel welcome and everything.  MiguelAngel’s sweet little face seemed different, after even just a little bit of friendship.  Afterward, he came up to us and said, whatever this is that you have here, I want to learn about it.   What an incredible experience.
We visited a menos active (less active) and met her family, all of whom aren’t members.  Not her husband, nor her three children.  We have had two lessons with them, during both of which the children were attentive and excited to hear from us.  And the parents are humble and willing, and want to be a part of things.  I seriously had them in my mind when I got my cal to Peru.  That was my image of what it would be like to teach in Peru.  They are amazing.  The fam Alban.  

We have this super cool ward mission plan, and I am so excited about it.  The goal is that every member can either bring someone into the church or bring someone back to church this year.  So January is find. February is invite.  March is teach.  April is baptize.  They are all excited about it.  oh man :)

So, sometimes being on a mission is hard.  I hope that didn’t come as news to anyone.  But if it does, just hold on.  I am explaining myself.  There was a time several years back when I had roadrash super bad, all over the front of my legs and the tops of my feet.  I got home, and my dad had to clean me up.  It hurt SO bad.  But he had to get the rocks out if I was going to heal. He had to.  And I knew that.  But it still hurt really bad.  But the thing is, that he was hurting just as bad as I was.  I saw his eyes welling up.  And while he was cleaning me up with one hand, he was holding my hand with the other.  I know that is how it is with us and Heavenly Father.  He loves us SO much.  Yea, He has to clean us up, He has to get the rocks out, but it hurts Him more than it hurts us to have to do it.  But it’s so we can get better, so we can heal.  And He is crying with us, and holding our hands all through it.  I have a testimony of that.

Gosh, I wish there was time to tell you about all the miracles!  There are just too many!  

I know God loves us, no matter what.  And here I am, getting to proclaim it 24/7.  I love it.  What a blessing.

Please pray for:  the fam Gil, the fam Castillo, the fam Alban, the fam Farias Peña, Judith, Rosa, Antonio, y Robert.  And for the members of Talara Alta y Bello Horizonte.  Thank you.  I love you!

Hermana J

Dalton - Whoops!

December 30, 2013


Ok, we are right now getting cut off our internet time to do some P-day things that apparently can’t wait. I'm sorry I didn’t use that whole internet time effectively this time, but hey, Happy New Year!  There's gonna be even more to write you all next week!

Elder Johnson

Davi - Milagros de la Navidad!

December 24, 2013

Milagros de la Navidad!  [Christmas Miracles]
Man, what a week, y’all!  What a week.  Seriously, I feel like I am being so rewarded, but I didn’t do anything to deserve it.  

We were teaching a lesson to this mom who we talked to in the street.  This was like the third lesson with her, and more than anything, she liked to tell us about her problems.  Not unusual, and really, it’s good.  I have always loved being that person.  But in the middle of it I started being a total brat in my mind and feeling like she didn’t want it and she didn’t actually want to listen to us.  So I sort of interrupted her and made her read Alma 7:15 (there really is an art to interrupting that I didn’t know existed), and it didn’t really have much to do with what we were talking about either, but we needed to get to another appt, and yada yada yada. Seriously, I was being a total brat.  And then she read it.  And we asked her what it meant to her.  And she said, “Conversion.” And we were like, whoa, what?  Because people almost always use a word in the scripture.  We both reread the scripture and were like, yea, that’s awesome. She proceeded to tell us that she wanted to have conversion, but she didn’t know how.  And it was like, AAAAAleluia!  Luz, and her sons Jairo and Piero.  Por favor pray.

I would like everyone to know that I have had to erase like five sentences now because I started writing en español without realizing it.  hmmm :)

We found two amazing young guys this week.  Robert y Niller.  They are so great.  One of them I think has a small crush on my comp, but it’s more just funny than anything because she is all super stern to try to balance it out.

Have I told you?  I adore my comp.  Totally.  She is so cool.  She had to give one of those  you-have-exactly-thirty-seconds-to-prepare-a-talk talks, and she spoke on temples.  It was beautiful, and I was so proud of her. We have really been working on having faith, and it is so cool to see the changes in her. She is so happy!  And we are seeing huge miracles.  

Like a couple of less-active people we are working with.  I love that Dalt always talks about less actives. Because it is really so beautiful.  Working with the prodigal sons of the world.  More than anything, helping them see that they can come back.  It wasn’t easy for the prodigal son.  I can only imagine he felt rotten.  And so incredibly unworthy.  And that maybe it was an inward battle the whole journey back to his dad whether to return or not. But when we see that humility of a prodigal son, to see the walls come down, to see grown men cry because they feel so unworthy and like they can’t get back, nor should they deserve to, is something so incredible.  Because then we get to testify of love.  Then we get to just share love and nothing more.  My whole mission long, I have had a picture of the prodigal son in mi agenda. Because that’s what missionary work is all about.  It’s about that tearful beautiful huggy reunion.  How incredible to have times in my mission when we can see that happen!  I feel beyond blessed.  

You know how sometimes songs capture your feelings better than you an?  I feel that way about scriptures. Like, jeez, sometimes, Nephi just so gets me!  I’m like, how Nephi?  Exactly!  2 Nef 33:3y4. Or like 2 Nef 4, etc etc. But this week, Ammon totally got me.  Alma 26, I was like, oh man.  Exactly yes.  My joy is full.  And as to my strength I am weak, but I will glory in my God.  How amazing and the best is He? If this is bragging, yes, I am gonna brag.  Because this is who I am.  I am the daughter of the best Being in the universe, and I WILL glory in Him.  I just feel so grateful and happy :)

We watched Polar Express for our Christmas program.  I had never seen it.  Loved it so much.  With my comp, we decided immediately that I was la negrita, because she was staring awkwardly at the new kid smiling, wanting to be his friend.  And because I am black.  And that she was the main kid.  And then it was hilarious to see how perfectly it fit in like every second.  But really, it was more of really touching than hilarious.  Everthing had more meaning.  I was thinking of how that is with us.  When we decide early on who were are, everything makes so much more sense.  We enjoy everything that happens more.  We are touched by things that maybe we wouldn’t have been touched by otherwise. We end up understanding everything better.  If I had decided at the end that I was that girl, one, it would have been cocky.  And two, I wouldn’t have enjoyed the movie nearly as much, or had the opportunity to feel like God was talking to me throughout.  If we don’t know who we are, we are missing out.  Let us decide who we are.  Right now. Decide that we really are children of God.  

Fabian, Gina and Edgar and Roel, Rosa, Luz and Piero and Jairo, Judith, Fam Gil.  Please pray for them!!!! Thank you!

It is so beautiful to be a missionary right now.  To be trying to give my all to the One who did give all.  I am so grateful for Him. I am just the luckiest person.  I have the best best friend who has ever lived.  He gave everything because He loves me so incredibly much.  I love being His.  Everyone please enjoy this time—I know we have it because Christ wants us to be happy, and to really use what He gave us.  He loves you so much!

Hermana J

Dalton - Feliz Christmas!

December 24, 2013

[When we didn’t get an email from Davi or Dalton on Monday the 23rd, we thought that was because we would be talking to them on Christmas, but then we got surprise emails on Christmas Eve!  Ummm... and I am finally catching up on the blog.  Sorry.]

Feliz Christmas!

Hey, I am not writing a whole lot today, because I know we'll be talking tomorrow.  Also, because I am looking around frantically for my skype username.  You all need to waste more time checking your email on Christmas Eve.

Well, ok, an experience.  I'll write one.  On Sunday, we were walking to an appointment when we saw a member talking to a neighbor of his that just moved in.  We talked to the neighbor that moved in, and we talked to some family members since.  They're actually very interested and want to know if the Restoration is true.  We will have a lesson with them on Thursday, but I'm really excited for that.  It was a simple thing where the Lord put someone in our path.

Sorry, I'm already out of time.  Love you all.  Sorry for being boring, and remember, 12:15!  Right before Davi.

Elder Johnson

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Davi - Animo, not Anime

December 16, 2013

Animo, not Anime

Ok, first I have to tell you about something I did this morning, because I want all of you to be proud of me and tell me it’s all going to be ok.  My dear sweet companion from Guatemala made black beans a while back.  They were delicious.  But apparently there were leftovers that got forgotten about.  And I found them this morning, with WORMitas all over the place.  I was horrified.  And I cleaned it all out.  Had one of the worst smells I have ever smelt.  I still can’t think about food because I have been nauseous ever since.  But, hey I did it.  Apparently worms can literally be born from the food.  I had no idea that beans had the capacity to give birth.  Even though I had the job of changing adult diapers for a summer, this morning was still one of the raunchiest things I have ever made myself do.  Please, someone tell me you are proud of me.

This week:  I feel like I am finally starting to get it a little bit.  The importance of the temple. Like all of these people are inactive in the church.  Because they really weren’t invited to catch the vision.  To really see what they could become.  Baptism is simply a step to the temple.  It is a step to becoming who God wants us to be, to realizing the joy and greatness that He has in store for us.  The temple is where they really belong.  That is where they will be able to receive the promised blessings of the Lord.  The work of the latter days is simply temple work.  D y C 138, y’all.  So that means missionary work in the latter days is getting them to the temple. It changes everything.  Seriously.  It makes everything else make so much more sense.  Like, we taught Karmen about temples, and she was like, OH, I need to get baptized and do all these things so I can go to the temple in a year.  And all of a sudden she had a reason!  Like before she was walking with her beautiful blind faith, and then when she found out about temples, she didn’t feel blind anymore.  She had direction.  She knew where she was headed and where God wanted her to be. How awesome is this!!  I feel so lucky that I got to work there before this.  Because of all things in the gospel, I have the most animo [zeal; enthusiasm] when testifying of temples.  It’s the most like AAHHHH  IT’S SO COOL!!!  of all.  

I have less than half my mission left.  How terrifying is that?

I looove teaching our little mission prep group.  They are the sweetest.  One of them brought a non-member friend to it, which was so cool too.  And they are all so excited to help him into the Church.  And Marcos, a real solid, stalwart 17-year-old, ended up asking for advice about getting an answer for if the Church is true.  He is so sweet! Like here he is, patiently and faithfully awaiting an answer to a very important question, but still going forward with his mission, with coming to church every Sunday even if his friends don’t.  I think that is such a good example. Just, move forward.  When you don’t know exactly, when you feel like you are missing something, when you are waiting on the Lord, walk while you are waiting.  Keep going.  Keep being faithful and doing what you know is right.  That is faith to me.  Doing what you know is right even when you don’t feel it.  

It is pretty rad, huh?  Getting to learn all of these cool things from these amazing people.  I love it.  And I love all of you.  I pray for you all the time.  And please keep praying for me.  And for Judith, and Gina, and the Fam Castillo, and Rosa, and the Fam Gil, and Jefrey and Migual angel.  And the members of Bello Horizonte and Talara Alta, in distrito de Talara.  Please and thank you.  

God loves you!  Remember that!

Hna Johnson

Dalton - Panetón

December 16, 2013


Man, I knew the eye doctor would remember my birthday.  Just knowing that they sent that card makes me want to cry 20/40 tears.

I think it's time to tell you all an important step in my life that has occurred within these past 2 months:  I no longer do pushups like a mujer [woman].  I tell you that so you don’t worry when I tell you that I am eating way too much panetón.  It's basically Peruvian fruitcake, but everyone gives it to us and I've actually gotten to the point where I like it.

Also, I finally ate that birthday cake you all sent.  It was amazing.  My middle school teachers would be so proud of me to know that I still remember how to convert from Farenheit to Celsius.

It turns out that people are really busy this time of year.  In spite of a lot of appointments that fell through, there have been some really good things happening with our less-active family that we found on the street.  We've been teaching Martha's 80-year-old mom, who has actually been reading the Book of Mormon.  Once you spend some time here, you learn that it's a miracle to have someone that age read the Book of Mormon and believe that it's as credible as the Bible.  You also learn that it is even more miraculous for someone that age to understand what they're reading in the Book of Mormon.  We were absolutely dumbstruck when she recounted perfectly what happened with Nephi and his brothers in the first few chapters in the Book of Mormon.  She is now preparing to be baptized the end of this month.

Pepe and Rosa Briceño, the pensionist’s cousin, are excited too, but it's hard to find them this time of year to teach them.  Keep praying for them!

We find out about transfers later today, but I think I'm still here, unless President wants the sisters to work their magic here.  We'll see how it goes.

Love you all!  Merry almost Christmas!

Elder Johnson

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Davi - To make up for the short one last week

December 9, 2013

To Make Up for the Short One Last Week

How delightful it is to be a missionary.  I just feel so much like I belong doing this forever.  I never ever want to leave.  I had a nightmare that I got released and someone was trying to take my PMG [Preach My Gospel book], and I was like ready to bite their hand off.  Which really just shows that I need to stay longer to develop Christlike love for thieves too. 

My dear comp and Jacqui, our buddy

It’s just so cool… you know?  I mean, all the time!  We are here just sharing the love God has for them.  I had this intercambio [exchange] this week with this sister, who just was so out of her mind terrified.  And I got to feel so much peace in letting her really know of the love God has for her, and the confidence He has in her.  She literally looked like a different person by the end of it.  The only thing that was different was that she was listening to God telling her how precious she is.  She was paying attention to it, and believing Him in the ways He was telling her.  And she just… changed!  So dramatically!  Honestly, that was one of the coolest miracles I have seen my whole mission.  Plus, the member who was with us in the tarde [afternoon] was like hilarious.  A middle-aged Peruvian mixture of Spence and Jerry Lewis.  Just try to imagine it.

Maybe the best picture that will be taken on my mission.  Hermano Felix con su moto y su libro preferido [with his motorcycle and his favorite book] y sweet face of always sharing the gospel.  This was the last time he came out with us to do visits before I left.

This week, we have been talking about the temple with everyone.  We have started inviting people to the temple first, for the invitation to be baptized.  It’s like, really cool.  It makes so much more sense to everyone.  You should see the way eyes light up when we talk about the temple. They remember. Something in them remembers the temple. You can see something spark when we talk and testify of it.  I start crying every time. One, because I love it and know it is the best thing in the whole world, and two, because I miss it with my whole heart.  I have officially been without the temple longer than I ever have since I was 12.  It’s ok—I am breathing normally.  But I can’t think about it for too long.  Luckily, I can talk about it with people.  Because if me being without it for a whole year means others can get there, yea. Vamos.  [Let’s go.]

One night we were in this hamburger joint to grab something for dinner, and we were talking to the people who work there. (Yea, we are buddies—we go there sometimes...)  And this little girl starting reading one of the books we had on the table.  Her gma got mad at her, and told her to get back to the table.  We were like, “Oh no, it’s ok!  You like reading, sweetie?  Here’s a pamphlet!”  And she was all excited.  And this other guy who had his food immediately said, “Can I have one of those?”  And we were like, “You sure can!”  And while we were explaining the pamphlet to this guy, the gma had started reading out loud to the little girl.  The whole place was being taken over.  How magical :)

Talara Alta [the part of town where Davi lives] didn’t have water one day last week.  I guess that happens frequently. So what it means is that we can’t shower or do the dishes that day.  So, I feel like, well, worse things have happened.  

Talara.  So cute, right?

I think I understand a little bit more the work of the Lord.  I remember in my last area, I was at the house of one of the counselors in the bishopric.  And his twenty or so grandson is special.  And can’t see very well or walk very well, but he always wants to be helping.  Really, he is darling.  His mom caters, and had made a ton of these immaculate sweet treat things that were gorgeous and I can’t imagine how long they took to make.  She came down the stairs carrying a tray of them, and Richard, the grandson, came down the stairs carrying the other. And she wasn’t even watching him or saying be careful or anything.  I remember thinking, how is she not worried about this?  And then I started realizing how much like Richard we are.  That Heavenly Father lets us carry these trays.  It is a privilege to be helping Him.  And really, He would be doing it so much better.  And it would be so much safer if the trays never got into our hands. But what He really wants is for us to be happy.  Is for me to feel like I am helping.  To feel like a part of things. By no means is anything safe in my hands, but that isn’t what matters to God.  If we want to be helping, He will let us.  Because He loves us.  It is such a blessing.

Another picture of Sparks in Peru.  We went to Chiclayo to see Elder Nelson, and those two are part of that mission.  How fun!  

I really know the Gospel is true, y’all.  I know it with all I have.  God tells me every time I ask. He is there with me, and His angels really are with me all the time. I know the same goes for anyone who wants to be a part of it. Anyone who wants a tray gets a tray, plus an angel to help out.  Six angels.  

Keep up the good work, y’all.

Sis J

Dalton - Mis Viente Añitos

December 9, 2013

Mis viente añitos [my 20 little years]
Hey everyone, I'm 20!  I look the same.  I was kind of expecting to have the same kind of bodily reaction as Jim Carrey as the Grinch when his heart grew 3 sizes.  But no.  My body, however, did react to being served way too much food for my birthday.  It's for that reason that I didn’t make the cake that y’all sent.  Oh, yeah, I got that package you all sent!  It was nice.  The sprinkles card was good for my sophisticated level of humor. I must say, however, and this pains me to say it: the monkey card wins.  Congratulations, Sister Adlish! You just can’t beat the classics.

Hey, the Cruz family got baptized this week!  That was nice.  They are the eternal investigators that we luckily got to baptize.  The Spirit was strong there during the ordinance, and the nice thing about baptizing eternal investigators is that they already know the ward.

After weeks of not finding them, we were able to teach Rosa and Pepe (Pepe is the pensionist's cousin). This is exciting, because his wife, who was raised super Catholic, listened very intently this time and recognized the spirit.  Something exciting about this is that this could be the key to activating all of that extended family (imagine huge families like Quirk or Hansen being inactive in our stake, and just replace that with the name Trujillo, and that's the goldmine we almost have).

Also, Martha Wilson and her family are coming along.  Martha is the less active that we miraculously found by talking to her in the street, (she doesn't show up in the directory).  Her daughter and her partner responded positively to the awkward "so, you two getting hitched, or what?" invitation.

Some exciting things happening here!  I think it calls for some Pollo a la Brasa [chicken a la hot coals-must mean barbecued chicken] today.  Speaking of which, I think I'm getting worse with money now.  I'm not sure if it's because of the fact that any currency that isn't the dollar looks like Monopoly money.  But no worries.  Pollo a la Brasa is important.

Love you all and hope you're doing well.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Davi - Eight minutes left and counting


Eight Minutes Left and Counting

Sorry.  No time this week.  

I straight up looooove being a missionary!  It is so great. And I just feel so right here.  I so belong here. There is something magical about Talara that I am in love with.  Maybe it is the ocean breeze.  Who really knows?  But anyway, it is the best.  Our two sweet little branches are so ready to progress.  I love these members with my whole heart already.

I am starting to feel like myself in Spanish.  How fun is that?  

I went to a place called Tumbes this week for an intercambio [exchange].  And I came back with my feet literally covered in bites from some kind of horrible creature.  Covered.  This place is 20 minutes from Ecuador, and is BLAZING hot, and the mosquitoes are huge.  But I loved it there. And I would love to go back.  I love getting to know so many people.

There is this one familia, la familia Gil, and they are the greatest.  They have to get married, but you know.  The dad is leading the whole family because he just gets it!  And he is so animated about everything.  There is a 14-year-old girl, who I adore too.  I just love youth!  And then a four-year-old named Belen, who is the most darling little troublemaker the world has ever seen.  I adore them.

I love my comp.  We have fun working together.  

We are teaching a group of youth, a mission prep class, and I couldn’t love it more than I do.  They are so sweet. And more are showing up every week.  

Ok, sorry this is so tiny.  But like, I really love you all.  And I really love the Lord.  And I know with everything that this is his work and his glory.  And that we are so lucky to be here.  Gosh, it is just so great!  

Anyway, love you.  Love everything.

Hna J

Dalton - But it's almost my birthday!


But it’s almost my birthday!

Hope that the interfaith stuff all went well.  [Our family sang at a Thanksgiving Eve program.]  I'm not going to lie to you, it sounds pretty boring.

Anyway, I'm sure you're all devastated that you won't see me turn 20, but don't worry.  20 is like the awkward stage.  You'll all be able to see me as a butterfly 21-year-old.

This week was good.  I got a little disappointed on Sunday to not see our investigators, but I felt a lot better later in the day Sunday.  We have a golden family that have been investigators for a year.  They didn't seem 100% this past week about their baptismal date for this Wednesday, but our fasting was not in vain.  We went to their house with 5-10 members and I told the dad that his family is there for him. When they left, we talked some more and they are sure for this week.  So, I guess you can say I'm all set in terms of birthday presents.

I've also been thinking a lot about the scripture that says that "I will hasten my work in its time."  More than anything, I've been thinking about the word hasten.  It refers to an acceleration rather than following a fast pace. Many times, when we look at the scriptures, we might not think that it has specific application to us, but this scripture is very specific.  It doesn't apply to those in future generations, but to us.  Those in the next generation, and perhaps even those in 10 years or less, will grow up to find themselves in a hastened work.  Sometimes I have been wondering why this can be so hard, but it's because we have been trusted with the acceleration, which is more difficult than keeping up the fast pace.  It is a real priviledge (Mom, correct that word if I didn’t spell it right) to be a missionary in this moment, just as it is for you all to be members.

Love you!

Elder Johnson

Davi - Go Get 'Em!


Go get ‘em!

Hey, It’s totes my bday!  What a great day it has already been.  I feel like there are angels making sure that I am having a good birthday.  And that Heavenly Father wanted to give me birthday presents too.  So thanks, Mom, for praying that I would have a good birthday.  I can feel it.

Happy thanksgiving, y’all!  Eat stuffing and pie for me!  I will eat chifles for you!

Ok, so we had a reunion con Elder Nelson and Elder Wardell.  Oh man, it was so incredible!  We got up at 2 in the morning, and traveled a total of 11 hours that day, but it was so worth it!!  Elder Nelson and his wife gave talks on how to be more temple minded in our missionary efforts.  So incredible.  Tying my two great loves together even more.  Throw chifles in there and we are golden.  Hermana Nelson told us to pray to find people who have ancestors who are desperate to have their work done.  And then to see all of the angels around every single person you talk to, saying go go go get ‘em, go!!!  So cool.  The work of salvacion really is picking up incredibly. isn’t it?

[This photo was actually sent by the moms of the elders seen here with Davi.  All three are from Sparks, are serving in Peru, and saw each other at the meeting with Elder Nelson.  There’s Elder Chad Gray and Elder Alec Harris with Hermana Davi Johnson.  Thanks, Julie and Tammy!]

It is fun to learn that the things we have in the states really aren’t necessary.  In Piura I learned that carpet and hot water aren’t necessary, and here I am learning on top of that that door handles and toilet seats and running water or floors in general aren’t really that necessary.  Yea, who needs ‘em?

So I love this area.  The people are really super great.  We are serving in two branches, but they aren’t like tiny. And they have a lot more youth than my last ward, which of course I am eating up.  We found some really incredible people this week too.  Oh I am so excited to teach youth!  There is this feisty 16-year-old and her fam (Sarai and the fam Leon), and she fights and argues, and it makes me so happy. Because she can have really powerful experiences with that kind of fire.  And her little brother is like my favorite thing in the world.  Caleb, 8, looks a ton like Magesh in India, so I just want to kiss him on the face every time I see him.  And then this lady named Milagros con su son 10, and she was so sweet.  I was bearing my testimony that I know that God loves me, and so I know He loves her, and she said, How do you know?  Like, I know He does, but how can I know like you know?  Well, sugar, let us tell you :)  It was so cool.  And her son wanted to read and go to church.  Ah :) Please pray for them!  And the Fam Gil!  Thank you!

I feel like I am learning more than anything else how to really be a friend to Christ.  Like, I knew all of these things before my mission, you know?  I knew it was all true.  But I had never had the chance to really show Christ all He means to me.  And to really show Him that I am going to be faithful forever, and loyal to Him no matter what. How cool that I have those opportunities here.  I sure do love him.  Like, so much.  I know that this is His work.  I know it because I am here for Him, and He is here with me. Because He is always in His viñeyard, so if we choose to be too, we will be with Him. 

Hey, I love you guys.  Keep up the prayers.  Thanks!

Hermana J

Dalton - Wilson!!!



Hey, everybody.  It's Elder Johnson again.  I'm having a good time, so you can tell the Friday night shift at the temple that I said hi and that I love them.  Well, Thursday night shift too, if you're ever there.

Also, the shoes thing.  [Dalton’s shoes look awful in every picture I’ve seen, so I asked him if he needs new ones.]  Hear me out here.  I'm pretty sure that Kansas wrote the song "Dust in the Wind" while on a road trip to northern Lima.  I won't say that I shine my shoes every day, but I try to be good about that, even though it usually takes about five minutes for it to look like it just went through an Indiana Jones movie.  If the shoes ever become unusable, I'll be sure to tell you, because anyone in Peru with my shoe size could make decent money as a circus freak.  No shoes my size.

Oh, and the Pedro Beltran is the main road in Satelite, which is the main part of my area.  My ward is actually some of the most developed part of Ventanilla, which doesn’t see nearly the poverty of Pachacutec, another part of Ventanilla which is actually the poorest part of Lima.  So that's where I am.

And hey, we finally baptized an Italian kid!  Well, we were just the missionaries that were lucky enough to be in the ward when he got baptized.  Abrahan Poggi was an investigator for 2 years, and he was just waiting for family members to come from Italy to be there for his baptism.  I'm not going to overstate my importance in this process, but it was a great service all the same.

This week was great in terms of finding people.  We found tracting a man named Miguel, who went to church with his friends 20 years ago and liked it.  We ended up teaching his whole family, and—drumroll please—he's married!  A missionary here that sees a wedding picture in his investigator's home reserves the right to cry right there on the spot.  (I held myself together, thank you very much.)  He also came to church by himself, which doesn't ever happen to investigators you find tracting.  That was exciting. Another person I contacted on the street is named Martha Wilson, who, as it turns out, is a member that doesn't show up on the ward directory. She was so excited to hear from us that she invited family and friends to the lesson we had on Saturday.  She, as well as a large number of people in her family, also came to church on their own.  For the first time ever in the ward, they had to open up the overflow during sacrament meeting.  That made the ward (and the missionaries) really excited.  That was a lot of fun.  

Also, we found Erika, who actually read the Restoration pamphlet, even though she isn’t exactly an investigator yet.  We found her right after a bird opened fire on my arm.  We knocked her door and she let me use the bathroom, and I left the pamphlet, just because I kept thinking while in the bathroom "Well, the Lord works in mysterious ways."  At the very least, nice bathroom.

That sounds like a great priesthood meeting that you had.  I hope you didn’t share anything super embarrassing that I wrote.  Love ya!

Elder Johnson