Monday, September 30, 2013

A typical Sunday

Some highlights from your favorite Hermana in Perú (atleast I hope so)-
-We had an earthquake this week! Don´t worry, everything is good, the volcanoe didn´t explode, and everyone´s happy. It was kind of cool and kind of scary. We sure don´t have those in Idaho though. Afterwards Hna Z and I also read our Emergency packets for the first time- to figure out what to do if there ever was a worse one. So now we´re informed and we added more stuff to our Emergency backpacks that made us feel better.
-We have been asked to teach Seminary three nights a week because our ward can´t hold down a decent or consistant seminary teacher to save their lives. So yeah- laugh it up Brother P! Speaking of Brother P- please make a formal apology on my part for every time I used my cell phone in Seminary or colored Disney pages- because when the kids here don´t want to pay attention- I can´t help but think -KARMA! It´s karma. Also, Hannah and Rachel- if you want a laugh, one time during seminary, ask him about the time his friend got stabbed in the neck and died. It´s not what it sounds like- He´ll explain. But anyways- I don´t know what´s happening with our ward, but when we got here, they were just falling apart! Slowly we´ve been rebuilding, but it´s taken a lot of hard work and long nights on our part. Por ejemplo- I choose the Hymns and play the prelude, hymns, and postlude music during sacrament meetings (feel free to let Julie know this- we´ve got the same calling!), my companion leads, our ward mish leader is a bit of a skipper outer, so we teach Gospel Principles too, the Primary Presidency won´t ever meet together- and the President asked us to help her with the primary program, and by "help" I mean that we are in charge of choosing the songs, writing the kids parts, helping them practice during church and once during the week, we also don´t have a ward choir, and no one else can play the piano, so miercoles y sabados, we have ward choir practice in the chapel for an hour, and sometimes one person comes, and sometime 15 come, and we´re also continuing our English Classes and Family History Classes, which surprisingly has consistant attendance, and none of the YW do Personal Progress, so on Saturdays in the afternoon we have (cough, cough, mandatory, couch, cough) PP workshops, and there´s also this group in R.S. who say that they don´t understand the scriptures, so we have a scripture study class on Jueves, along with our Noches Misional, where poeple bring their nonmember friends to the chapel for a short message and to play games. And in all this mess, we get to find time for our investigators! We´re crazy, crazy busy- But I think all the service we´re giving is helping! We´ve gotten our sacrament meeting numbers up to a consistant 30. So that´s improvement from 15. :) But, although it´s crazy and we´ve got a million things to do- I am loving it!
I love you all- Keep you chins up!

Hna Leavitt

Monday, September 23, 2013


I just wrote mom a letter, but I have to say it again- Happy Birthday this week Mom!! Celebrate extra hard for me, okay?! Everyone eat twice the cake and ice cream that you normally would, to compensate for me not being there. Also watch like 11 hours of Netflix, and then you´ll really know what it´s like to be me. Anyways-

We had divisiones again this week- and like the first time- I absolutely loved it!! Like I´ve said, Hna C is officially the coolest missionary that I´ve ever met, and I want to be exactly like her. She calls people to repentance in the street and in their houses and in buses- it´s incredible! And, once again, this division came at a perfect, much needed time, when I was a little "menos animada" because of lots of things. I know that I needed it more than any other time on my mission, and I´m so grateful to have capacitadoras who listen to the spirit to know when they need to switch things up. They´re awesome.

This week was pretty normal, we have one investigator, who keeps on disappointing us- but hey, if we do all that we can do, we can only be disappointed in the situation, not in ourselves.

I ate a chicken foot this week. In my soup. And a chicken heart. And these really really pink salty potatoes that I could barely scarf down. But I´m trying (almost) everything that I can- to really get the Peruvian experience. :)

I picked out an awesome scripture case that this lady in our stake makes for all the missionaries that want it. It´s going to be awesome, and I chose the image of Enos for my LBM, and afterwards I decided I better study up a little but on what exactly is in Enos to justify me having it. And Enos is awesome. I have a letter to send with more of my thoughts.

Hey- if someone asked you right now what the Pearl of Great Price is- could you answer them?  I don't know where I was for the seminary lesson when we learned how to explain what the P of GP is- but I found out this week that I have something I need to study.

I love you all, and I hope the letter I sent you finds you in good, happy health-

Keep up the good work Leavitt´s!

Hna Leavitt

Monday, September 16, 2013

It is all worth it

Family! How are you all?! I´m so excited to write to you this week for multiple reasons-
1) "Bautismo, baustismo, vamos a bautismo!" This was the song that I song from the hours of 6:28 am to 11:23 am this past Saturday- much to the chagrin of my companera- but I was sop excited that I couldnt hold it in! This 14th of setiembre, D.menetered the waters of baptism and made a lasting covenant with God and it was just awesome! This was the first baptism that I felt like I had an actual "hand" in- so to speak, and the joy and happiness that I felt this day was just amazing. This is joy- to help others come unto Christ through faithful actions of repentance. We went to the capilla the night before to set it all up, and we cleaned, and cut out letters (without a Cricket- can you believe it?!), and blew up balloons, and moved the piano and everything was all ready to go, and we went to bed that night with our fingers and toes crossed that it wouldn't fall through, and everything would be beautiful manaña. And it basically was! We told all the members we could that we had a baptismal service this Saturday, at 10 in the morning, and we had lots of people say that they´d be there. But this is Perú and no one is ever on time- so finally, at 10:47, when people started showing up, we started. It really was beautiful. And, once again, I had the chance to play Peruivian hymns I've never heard, but it all turned out okay! And afterwards, Daniel bore his testimony- and when he looked at us with tears in his eyes and said thank you, and how much all the support of the misioneras meant to him, because he doesn't have his family here or a lot of friends, and how he was just amazed that we would do all this for him and that he could feel the love of God every time that he read the Book of Mormon (this is all coming from a 22 year old, mind you) that´s when I had a "Alright- I´ll take all the bad, all the frustration, all the aching feet, all the slammed doors, all the homesickness, I´ll take all of it- twice over if I have to- if I can have another moment like this." I took lots of pictures, and I´ll send them when I get my cord, but it was just special and I loved every minute of my time in our chapel this Saturday.
2) I had my first "opportunity to grow" as far as my health is concerned! Mom, calm your jets- I´m totally fine now, but I have learned the valuable lesson of not eating alpaca meat. :) Good to know! I´m taking my vitamins and all sorts of witchcraft voodoo things Mom, don´t worry. But it was a great opportunity to reflect on why I was really here. :)
3) We had a country wide broadcast this Sunday, for stake conference, and Elder Bednar and Elder Scott talked to the people of Perú and it was broadcast from Lima. And it was really special- Elder Bednar talked bout how we cant schedule repentance, and Elder Scott talked about the divinity of women- how´re they´re the crowing glory of the Father. It was so neat to see how much respect the people here have for Prophets, they paid so much attention to the Apostles and talked about it for hours afterwards.

I´m doing good, still reading Jesus the Christ like it´s hot off the shelves- and I love it.

I was super duper jealous to see you all at USU. Utah State- Hey, Aggies all the way!

I love you, all of you, even my little sock mummy. :)

Keep it up Leavitts!


Hermana Leavitt

Monday, September 9, 2013

Missionary work is different here than in the states...


This week was straight up awesome! I´m so glad that everyone in the world wasnt lying to me when they said that things would get easier with time. This week was the tiniest bit easier than the last, and I´m going to take this small gap of happiness and run with it. We worked really hard this week to try and gain the confidence of the members. Which means talking more about my family and my life in the gospel than ever before! We also gave lots of service trying to let the people ¨know us by our love.¨ 

Missionary work is so different here than in the states. I read Kelsi´s and Christina´s emails (friends of Melissa's from our ward. One is in California and the other is in New York) sometimes and think ¨Wait, is this the same thing?!¨ But it´s good to be different sometimes. I can't really rely too much on the traditions and things I learned about how the Church functions because circumstances here are so different. But I´m growing leaps and bounds every week because I have to learn so much so fast. And I think that´s why I´m here. Perú is my place to learn and grow and help others learn and grow too.

We have our fingers and toes crossed that Hno. D will be baptized this 14th of Setiembre. He has a GF in our ward, and actually lives right next door to us. He has about 22 years (hahaha, that´s Spanish sentence construction for ya!). And he´s like the only investigator that actually completes his compromisos! It´s incredible! We´ll ask if he read 3 ne 27 like we told him to, and he´ll say ÿes and then tell us his thoughts on the chapter,  and I can barely believe it! An investigator that keeps his compromisos! Increíble! 

My companion and I are still learning that we grew up in different countires and therefore operate in way different ways. She´s a huggy, mother smothering type pf person, and I´m more of a ´I like to write in my journal on my bed by myself and not with you right next to me¨ type of person. She also shows love by telling me to do simple things, like put my jacket on. I seriously have to mentally process everything she says to me in her shoes, and realize that she´s not telling me to do every little thing because she thinks I´m a child, but more because this is how she ¨shows love¨. Haha, Kelsi- you´d just die of the irony of how much my companion wants to hug me! 

I sent ya´ll a fat letter with some pictures in it to prove that I still have all my arms and legs, much to the chagrin of these peruvian dogs.

Last P day we got permish to the plaza de almas, and it was awesome. Hopèfully pictures soon, when I get my cord. I saw so many white people, I was freaking out. And Hna Guararrdo kept saying ¨look! your cousin!¨or "look! Your grandpa!" I think I understand now why people react the way they do when they see me. 

I´ve been reading Jesus The Chirst and it is seriously awesome! I´m about  a third of the way through, and I´ve learned so much. I love all the big words, and the way that Talmage follows a specific pattern to set up and validate his arguments. I´ve come to understand more "deep doctrine" through this book than anything else! I love it, and cant wait to have time to study it more.

I love you all, and think of you oftten. Stay strong, stay safe, stay happy!

(Melissa got the package from the Leavitt reunion. Thanks Laura for heading this up and this is what she said when I asked her if she had received it "Yes, I did! And it was an awesome day, to receive two packages from home, one from Laura and one from my family, with the adaptors, that totally work." I also asked her if she had to pay fees for her packages and she replied "Nope, no fees. I only have to endure the jealous stares of everyone else in my Zone as I receive mountains of mail from my AWESOME family!")

Hna Leavitt

Thursday, September 5, 2013

Change of Pace

September 2, 2013

Familia! How are you all? Things here are pretty good. Another week gone down. The computer here stopped working for a bit, so this email will be rushed an full of typos, but I trust that dad will go through and fix them all. :)

First of all- I had the awesome opportunity to go on divisiones with our capacitadoras this week! They´re like sister zone leaders, but not really. I don't really know how to define them, but they are awesome. I got to leave Avelino for 24 hours and go to the area with Hna C, and she is straight up legit. Like, the coolest, most awesome missionary I've had the opportunity to learn from. I now have a personal hero in the mission. She´s from Lima, and is 21 and studied communications before. She loves American music, and we sang a Hanna Montana song before bed, and it was awesome. I grew so much, and she helped me understand so much that I had no idea about before. I can now challenge people to be baptized. And I can kind of be a little more direct than I was before. Bediciones. She was so nice and said some of the nicest things to me that I needed to hear. Instead of always focusing on the areas that I continually fall short in, she made me realize that I do have some strengths that I can use to make up for my shortcomings. I don't ever hear things like that in Avelino, so it really was a blessing at this time, when I was a little menos animada. I rekindled that fire that I had in the CCM, and our numbers showed that we both learned something from our trainers. 29 new investigators this week! We have to do divisiones this week with our ward members to make all of our appointments. And I´m terrible with directions here, so that will be interesting.

We've been trying to brainstorm ways to work with the members of the ward and get them animated- and one idea that everyone loves is- ENGLISH CLASSES. Yep. Two times a week for one hour, I will be a teacher. Which would be great if I knew how to speak Spanish, but I don't, so we will see how this goes. The members are excited, and they´re also going to bring their friends. refercias de oro!!! Yayay!! We´re also doing singing classes and family history classes. (and by we, I mean me, because my comp doesn't know how to do any of these things.) So it´s like service, but with the intention of finding referencias de los miembros.

I have not received my package with the adapters yet, so I have hope for this Wednesday!!

My Spanish is coming along slooooowwwwlllyyy. But at least is coming? We´re going to print photos today FINALLY. So I´ll send those home. I would send pictures from my camera, but on the bus back to our flat last week, someone stole my camera cord. Sneaky sneaky. Think you could send another one? With an end for my camera and a USB end for the computer and charger.

How is school?!?!? Hahaha. School! I loved the pictures of VB and XC. My sisters are so cool!! And the Bear Lake pics made me super jealous.

I´m sorry about your back mom. I trust you to make the best decision. I´m praying for you!!

Okay, I gotta jet. Read Helaman 10 and think about missionary work, will ya? You are all wonderful, and I love you so so much. Til next week-