Tuesday, July 29, 2014

July 29, 2014 ~ Week 4 Peru MTC

Week 4 Peru MTC
July 29, 2014


This past Saturday I went proselyting again.  Last time I went proselyting I went to the houses that were on the mountains with a Latino missionary who did almost all of the talking, simply because I could not convert the words I could have said in English to Spanish.  I was anxious to know who my companion would be this time around, and I ended up getting a brand new elder who has only been at the MTC for a little more than a week.  So, I knew that would mean I would be speaking the majority of the Spanish, even though my Spanish is far from perfect.  So this new elder and I prepared a lesson in Spanish, and I felt pretty confident.  But I did know that our first lesson, our first hour of speaking Spanish would be hard.  We went to a neighborhood in Peru.  We went door to door and we spoke to people on the streets talking about the gospel.  But when that first hour passed my speaking Spanish was still incredibly hard.  I felt alone, my companion wasn’t doing any of the talking simply because he could not understand the language. It made me think; how could we teach the fullness of the gospel if we do not know the fullness of the language of the people?  I said a prayer in my head asking for help with speaking this language.  

And this was the answer to my prayer:

Jesus Christ is not asking you to be fluent in the Spanish language after only having 4 weeks in the MTC.  Jesus is asking you to give your honest and best effort.  If there is an imaginary scale, and on this scale your best is only 10% or 20% and you still fell like it is not enough, well the atonement of Jesus Christ paid for the other 80 or 90 percent.  You can apply that statement to anything.

After that answer, Spanish words that I did not even know came to my mind, and I understood what the people were saying.  I was able to reply to them, and carry out and complete a conversation and get my message across.

I love the church.  I love Peru.

Word of the week: La igelsia es verdad (The church is true) 

Elder McCook

I will also share with you my testimony in Spanish:

Mi testimonio en espanol es, yo se que la iglesia es verdad. la iglesia ayudame toda mi vida.  Pro que este iglesia yo se que familias estan juntos. a veces nestros vidas estan difcil, pero con la expiacion de jesucristo muerto es no el fin.  Tenemos un profeta hoy. el nombre es Thomas S Monson.  sus palabras es mi palabras.  Nuestros palabras no es las palarbras de hombre pero de Dios.  Yo estoy in peru por que yo se que jesucristo vive.  Yo no miro jesucristo cada a cada pero yo tengo en me corazon.  Me corazon es de jesucristo. yo creo en el libro de mormon, y el evangelio es para todas las personas en el mundo.

En el nombre de jesucristo.


I’m not sure how well google translate will translate that.  Because speaking Spanish is easier then typing it.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

July 24, 2014 ~ Week 3 Peru MTC

Week 3 Peru MTC
July 24, 2014

As I thought about what I should write about this week, nothing spectacular or out of the ordinary came to my mind.  It made me realize that what I do here in the Lima, Peru MTC is now a daily routine for me. I’m used to the overcast weather from morning to evening.  I’m used to hearing, speaking and learning Spanish.  I’m used to waking up at 6:30 am and to the curfew at 10:30pm, but allow me to say, I absolutely love it!!!!  

I love eating some kind of meat along with rice and potatoes for every lunch and dinner.  
I love starting my day off with a prayer to God every morning at 6:30.  
I love surrounding my life around the Spanish language. 

My mission will not always be this easy.  I am still in the training center.  But a month from now I will struggle, and I will have bad days.  My Spanish is incredibly far from perfect.  I do struggle often.  When days are tough and long, I wonder what home life would be like.  Jeffery R Holland said "when we struggle, are spit upon, hit, threatened….. know that you are standing shoulder to shoulder with the best this world has ever known…..Jesus Christ." 

Word of the week: lejano de perfecto (far from perfect) 

Elder McCook

Thursday, July 17, 2014

July 17, 2014 ~ Week 2 Peru MTC

Week 2 Peru MTC
July 17, 2014


This week was amazing!!!!  Every two weeks (on Saturdays) all the missionaries go out into the city of Lima to teach people on the streets or in their houses.  I went with a Latino companion and a ward mission leader.  Lima has a central city surrounded by mountains and on these mountains are houses that are sprawled and are on top of each other.  We taught super humble people.  The houses are brick and metal but super colorful on the outside.  Some houses were blue and red, others orange and green.  The architecture was simply amazing because the way you got from house to house was by dirt hills and steep stairs.  We had the opportunity to teach 4 inactive members of church who did not know that we were going to teach them, but they humbly invited us in.  We taught them about the importance of persevering to the end, by having faith in Jesus Christ. While walking, my companion and I were stopped several times.  I did not understand what they were saying because they were speaking Spanish, but after we parted ways, my companion said they wanted to know my race and where I was from, and what we were doing.  It was so funny.  But we were able to give people copies of the Book of Mormon and pamphlets about the restoration.  I Love the people of Peru.

Learning Spanish is difficult but with every new word I learn, I love it more and more.  An interesting thought I had this week was that me and all the other missionaries, all over the world, are sacrificing 2 years of our life for people we have never met before, yes the people of Peru and our specific missions, but more specifically and importantly, Jesus Christ.

Talk to you all next week!  See Ya!

Word of the Week:  preseverar hasta el fin  (Persevere to the end)

Elder McCook

July 10, 2014 ~ Week 1 Peru MTC

Week 1 Peru MTC
July 10, 2014


Peru is the best!  I have been at the Missionary Training Center for 9 days.  It is great!  I wake up every day at 6:30am.  After breakfast I go to a language class to learn how to speak and write in Spanish.  I remember back in high school when I signed up for Spanish class, and hoped that my teachers would teach Spanish in English.  Well, guess what??  There are no English speaking teachers here.  Our lessons are in complete Spanish!  However, I am grateful that our teachers use hand signals, in case we do not know a word.  I am in a class with 8 other people.  There are about 200 missionaries in the MTC.  Which consist of 20 Hermanas (Spanish for Sisters) and the rest are Elders.  There are lots of people from South America that are here at the MTC.  During meals it is fun to speak Spanish with them.  When I see the South American Elders in the hallways I say ¡Buenos Dias!  And they say “good morning”.  What we know in Spanish so far…. they know in English.  Also for an hour every day we all have physical activity, I play football and futbol.  All the South American missionaries play futbol. They are very kind, not competitive, and incredibly good at futbol.

I love the weather here!  Every day is completely overcast. I have not seen the sun or the moon once. Today is my P-day, (or my preparation for the week day).  I had the chance to go through the Lima Peru Temple.  I also went to a supermarket called Totas, I think.  It is the equivalent to Wal-Mart.  I bought Inka Kola (South America’s version of coca-cola), hangars for my clothes and some American candy.  Next P-day I will go to a store called Metros, where I will buy a Lionel Messi futbol jersey….I’m in Peru… I honestly have too.

Every Thursday I can reply to my emails and let you all know how my week has been.  Learning Spanish at time is hard, but my Spanish teachers tell us all to take it one step at a time.  We can apply that to everything.  Practice makes perfect.  Write me!  I would love to chat with you all.

The Church is true!

Words of the Week: poco a poco (little by little) paso a paso (step by step)

Elder McCook

July 2, 2014 ~ 1st day Peru MTC

Wednesday, July 2, 2014
st day Peru MTC

Family!  I arrived at the Lima MTC last night at 2:30A.M. Peru time. Peru is two hours ahead of AZ.  I only have 5 min to write, however next week I will have an hour.  Thanks for the bottle pops.  They were a great surprise.  I got here safe and I am taking pictures. I flew to LAX alone, however after being at LAX alone, (about an hour before I was going to fly) 12 elders and 2 sisters came. It was GREAT!  They are very friendly. I am about to go and get my nametag!  Bye
Love you guys!
Elder McCook

Thursday, July 10, 2014

July 1, 2014 Tucson Airport

July 1, 2014
At the Tucson Airport early in the morning.  Skyeler sending one last 'Tweet' to his "Mormon Wins" Twitter account.... "Church is True...see you in two".

Posing with my dad.

 Hugs for my mom.

Set apart as a missionary for my mission

June 30, 2014
 The night I was set apart as a missionary by President Kartchner.

My loving family here to support me.  (mom, me, dad and Jadeyn)

My Grandma and Grandpa McCook
Uncle Quint and Aunt Amy and their children Tristan, Gavin and Tenely.

Official handshake with my cousin Alexia.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Temple trip

June 14, 2014 in front of the Mesa, AZ temple.  The day I went through the temple.

At Pomeroy's trying on my new suits for my mission.

I got a FREE TIE for taking this picture of me at Pomeroy's and posting it on Twitter.