Friday, December 25, 2009

1 Dec 09

Hey Fam, well this week is changes so i might get changed to a different place or not. President is leaving everything open to see what{s gonna happen, but it{s almost a sure thing that one of us is getting a change, me or Elder Pizarro. I think I’ll be staying a little bit longer in Lima and then I’ll spend the rest of the mission in Provinces. Normally we spend about a year in Lima and about a year in the provinces (Cusco, Apurimac, o Madre de Dios).
As to how my weeks gone… we found a family that’s really just ridiculously huge. It’s the grandma, the 3 sisters and one brother, their spouses and their kids. The only problem is that they are pretty fixed on being Catholic even though they accept us to teach them. I just hope they can base their testimony on the Book of Mormon and start coming to church. Another problem… these are the first Catholics I’ve met that actually go to their church, and because they don’t want to skip a Sunday over there, I’m not sure when they’re gonna make the choice to come and see ours.
Positive things about the mission:
Well my district leader is pretty cool. Elder Benavides, he’s from Bogota Colombia. And whenever we have work visits we have a pretty good time. Its interesting though because he doesn’t actually have a companion, just a mini-missionary, so either my companion or I have to work with someone who isn’t really all that prepared to be a missionary and teach all the lessons, and he doesn’t have the attitude of a missionary cause he feels like this is just a time to relax and see how the mission works. But its an interesting experience that we have to teach him from the very beginning and see how much the MTC actually helps prepare missionaries. It wasn’t like that at all last change. Just have to keep your fingers crossed cause a bad district leader makes a change a little less than enjoyable.
The zone leaders are alright too, and its always fun to spend a day with another gringo. We talk a lot more and joke around, and just have a good time. We just have to avoid certain places when there are two white people together. Two reasons, the guys sometimes want to rob us, and the girls always want to flirt with us. Its not like that in all the places here in Lima, but because we’re in Callao, where there just aren’t white people at all, they try to make an attempt.
Love to all

Saturday, November 28, 2009

23 November 2009

As to the gospel videos, I normally don’t use them much, I let some of the members use them, and they are way cool to use in the Family Home Evenings we have. And I want to plan a Movie Night for the young men and women so that they can bring their friends to watch the Testaments or maybe The Other Side of Heaven if I can get permission. And actually that would be awesome if you could get the new Gospel Art book, cause I think that would help a lot, again, especially in the FHE.
As for P-day, normally we hardly do anything because we can’t leave the zone, or even our sector without permission, and because they want the zone to be more united, we generally just play soccer in the institute building, and once every change we go visit somewhere in Lima as a zone. But normally we spend the time sleeping or playing around with the pension and the bishop. Card games, chess, checkers, magic tricks, whatever. As to the ward missionaries… they don’t help… they don’t even come to the baptisms, just the ward mission leader. We should have a meeting for half an hour after church every Sunday, but we just end up waiting the whole time, as one by one they sneak out or tell us one of their excuses. The bishop is stuck in his wheelchair, he doesn’t work anymore but he’s a pretty good bishop as far as I can tell. And I should be able to tell considering I live with him. But I guess he should be, he’s been bishop for nine years now in this ward. His wife is our pensionista, we live on the second floor, we spend a lot of time with him and his family, and I will definitely miss that when I leave the ward, cause most of the missionaries don’t have good relationships with their bishops.
Educational system… they have primary and secondary. Primary has 6 grades and secondary has 5, and sometimes they have kindergarden, but I’ve never heard of pre-school here. Its weird because most of the schools just look like big houses, and normally they are privately owned, but there are a few public schools that are a lot bigger, like a middle school from the States. As to the average day of the average man… get in the bus, waste an hour or 2 traveling, get to work, work for about 8 hours, go home for another 2 hours on the bus, eat and drink. Its not all that different but to me it seems that they are so much lazier.

Oh, and we baptized Poala Velasquez this week, the single mom, and it was freaking amazing because it was the first time we actually had the support of the ward. The relief Society came to see her and give a message and a little welcome, and I was so surprised because normally its just the missionaries, some investigators, the ward mission leader, and the bishop. I even think that they’ll do their visits to help her stay active. Its really weird that I’m so excited about something so little.

I'll write you a little more about the average life in lima next week, sorry but the time went by pretty fast. Love you guys!!

15 November 09

(Coulson responding to Mom's questions-ED) As to being an effective missionary… I’ve seen people who are so serious about their work as a missionary that they don’t even enjoy it, and it’s like an obligation that they just have to fulfill. I’ve also seen people who just take this time in their mission as a type of huge vacation
where they can get to know random people and learn a little more about the gospel, and enjoy a little bit more money than they’re used to. I’ve also seen missionaries, straight out disobedient, don’t follow any rules, are lazy, don’t want to be on the mission, yet still have a ton of baptisms. It confuses me a little bit, but I’ve found that being an effective missionary doesn’t always mean baptizing everyone in your sector. It’s just finding out what it is that the Lord wants you to
do, and then obeying. And as to the job that Calder got (2 years here in Las Vegas as a clerk for Judge Roger Hunt, a dream job-Ed), I was praying one night this week (don’t remember which day)about that clerkship with Judge Hunt and I just knew that the Lord would let him get that job, and I even remembered to write it in my journal, so that’s pretty cool. Well, here’s a story all about how my mission got flipped turned outside down, and I’d like to take a minute so sit right there and I’ll tell ya about… Jessica Widdup. She really is a great person, and she was going to church every week for about 2 months, but she wasn’t married (still isn’t) and for that she can’t get baptized, and for another reason, she doesn’t want to. Her sister was in the hospital and the doctors had her in intensive care because they
said she was going to die and that her lungs were basically full of blood. And Jessica stayed with her sister all that week in the hospital (missed the deadline for her wedding papers) and visited her family. But at one point, she was so desperate that she prayed to the Lord and said that if he would heal her sister, she would go back to the church she went to before (Evangelica). Miraculously the next day her sister left the hospital breathing normal and healthy. Sucks for me cause now she won’t come back to church even though she knows the Book of Mormon is scripture written by prophets and that Joseph Smith really did see God the Father and His Son. But we’ll just keep visiting them because they love having the Elders over to their house and I can’t help but feel that she’ll come back to the church eventually. And the half hour is over, so that’s it. Love you guys, and next week I don’t know what’ll happen because we have a multizone on Monday so I’m not sure what’ll happen, but still, send me a few letters.

Friday, November 13, 2009

8 November 09

(Mary decided to ask Coulson to answer questions as opposed to thinking of what to write since he does not have much time to compose - ED)

Ya, mission rules on emailing… we have exactly half an hour to write, read and do anything else that we need to do on the computer. We can only write one email, and send it to however many people we want.
President Tyler is a way laid back type of a guy, so its a lot different from President Elmer. The interviews have been a bit weird. Mostly because he is still getting used to the mission, and he has a bunch of stuff to work out before he’s really comfortable in his position. Mostly we’ve just talked about my ex companion, the problems he has made for the ward i’m in, and all the inactive people we have to work with now that they know that a Mormon missionary did all those stupid things. I basically had to stop teaching anyone who had met him to start getting baptisms again. (Coulsons mission Mom said that he was developing patience with that companion - Ed)
And speaking of baptisms, we’re gonna have a baptism this week (Anibal Berrios), the week after (Paola Velasquez) and the week after (JamierLoma) if everything works out well. Anibal is a 12 year old kid that lives close to us, his mom is inactive, and his dad doesn’t want to listen to us, but he really wants to get baptized and receive the priesthood. Paola is a single mother that had a little bit of an abusive past, left her boyfriend, and now is getting adjusted to the single mother life and the church. Jamier is 15 years old and regularly attends seminary, but isn’t so sure about the prophet Joseph Smith or a living prophet now, but is working towards his baptism on the 28th.

As to the holidays, all the regulars, and none of them are really that big of a deal as far as i can tell. Just Halloween because everyone here thinks its a holiday where everyone worships the devil and eat children and steal your soul. Its really awkward because we had to completely avoid the topic.

As to the food, we always eat in the pension, but the members always want to feed us too. I think Elder Pizarro has already gained about 20 pounds because he can’t fit into some of his pants anymore. But as for me, i just stay the same weight. Haven’t changed at all. Oh, and everyone here in Peru says that Peruvian food is the best in the world. It is such a lie! It really annoys me too because i think they know they’re lying. But my favorite food is probably lomosaltado, which i ate at that restaurant with Uncle Kevin, and la papa rellena, which is something like stuffed potato which is really good. But the freaking mashed potatoes here suck. Its basically like potato water because its so thin.

And Christmas presents... I’ve never been able to answer that question, and that hasn’t changed. But i just got your package that you sent through the mail, and even though i haven’t opened it yet, thank you so much.

Places to visit... you’d be surprised mom, but i really want to go visit a few of the museums here. We can’t really go very far on pdays cause we have to stay in the zone... and our zone is kinda poor on the touristic side of life... and my sector is even worse. More than anything i want to get out of Lima. Even though i love the people, i don’t like the city at all. I want to go back and visit the jungle, and go the the mountains.

And the story of the people will have to wait for next week cause the 30 minutes are r up.

Love you guys, and hope this email is a little bit better. Keep sending me questions like that, its easier for me to keep writing and not waste time

1 November 09

This week was pretty cool, because we had what they call here a matrimonio massivo, or a massive marriage. We had two couples get married, and we’ll have a baptism on Halloween to complete a family in the church, Manuel. The wife and the little girl are already members, and soon the husband will follow her (but he isn’t the father of the kids). And the other couple we’re still teaching. The wife is a member, but her kids are still too young and her husband is a little hard to find, so we’ve only talked to him a little bit. And the following week we should have another baptism, Jamier, a teenager that goes to seminary with his friend. And I’m still hoping that his cousin Brighyt will come to church some day. She reads the Book of Mormon and accepted to get baptized, just isn’t doing what it takes to get to that point. Then the next week a young woman, Paula, who’s a single Mom and we’ve never met the father. I don’t think he has anything to do with her life anymore, except every once and a while to see his little girl.

Love you guys and thanks for your support.Wow, well first off with the baptisms. Manuel got baptized Halloween in the nighttime, which was way cool, cause a bunch of people from the ward came to support him and his family. Now that we helped them get married and baptized, the whole family is part of the church and they are definitely progressing a lot. Now we just have to help his sister get married too, cause she wants to get baptized too. It’s just that her ‘spouse’ needs to get divorced from his other marriage first. Jamier wants to put off his baptism until the end of November, and Paola is ready for the 21st, just needs to come to church for the next two weeks. Anibal is a little guy, twelve years old that wants to get baptized too, and we’re helping him work towards that, but he really reminds me of Raul’s little brother… way active. Ya know, I would have thought that Vegas, being Sin City and all, would be worse than Lima, but its ridiculous the things that happen here. Just in my sector we’ve had people shot, stabbed, run over by cars, stolen. One night I woke up to go to the bathroom and I heard what I thought was a firework (cause the Catholics here always set off fireworks in their ‘faith walks’), but then I find out two days later that someone died in the park across from where Manuel lives.

And Becca, I’d love to have you and Davis come down here too, so start planning and saving up that green. Calder, I never forget about you and Ivy, and actually I talk about you quite a bit to my investigators too cause I’m dang excited to come home to see my first little niece.

Thanks for all the news, I love you guys a ton! And thanks for checking out about that package mom!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

19 October 09

No such luck with that package yet (retrieving the package in the mission office in Lima that we sent-ED), but not that Elder Hales (from the Canyon Gate ward, Sandstone Stake-ED) is in the office we’ll be able to bug the people till they get it to us. She dropped off the package at the CCM and I’m pretty sure the people there messed up a bit, but Justin will make sure we get those packages. Oh ya, so I finally got a chance to see Elder Hales, and it looks like I’ll be able to see him quite a bit now that he’s in the office. And I can call him up for whatever I need, information, packages or whatever. It’s good to have some Las Vegas blood in the mission. Anyways, I don’t think I’ll get a change, and me and Elder Pizarro will be comps until his visa gets in, but I don’t know when that’ll be, and I don’t think anyone really knows. The other guy whose mission is in Venezuela is gonna head off this week, so I don’t know if that means Elder Pizarro will head off soon or not. Its kinda nerve racking thinking about it, so I just don’t.
Actually, I was thinking about what the reason was that he’s here and not in his mission, thinking that there needed to be a reason, and we just found out… at least one of the reasons he’s here for the moment. We got a call Wednesday in the morning that his mom was in the hospital. President called us and told us we had permission to go visit her. Lucky us, it was just a 2 hour bus ride to get there. We stayed there in the hospital for almost the whole day, called president when we got back and he told us we could go back the next day. So Thursday we did the same thing, we went down to Villa Salvador to be with his family and visit his mom and then we had a baptismal interview. Friday when we got back to the pension we found out that she had just passed away and the funeral would be Saturday in the morning. The thing is that we have a conference with Elder Christofferson that morning, so he decided to go to the conference and have that baptism and then we’ll be heading out sometime this week (today or tomorrow) to go to her grave-site with his sisters. I really don’t know how to comfort him; I’ve never been good at that, but I have to say he’s been really strong. We talked for a long time about our families, about you mom, about everything and I think it helped, but we’ll see what happens when we go visit his family again.

And please don’t tell me you forgot the rubix cube (another package Mom sent, and no we did not forget)! Oh, and they use the word polo but they mean t-shirt, and yes it would be for Conny. And when I get that package I’ll send you guys all my pictures and a few video clips. And to all the returned missionaries in the family, send me some ideas about district meetings, or your favorite district meetings that you had.

Thanks for all you’re support, and I love you all.

Monday, October 12, 2009

12 October 2009

Just letting you know, we normally get the Liahona the month after, the mission sends them out, sometimes in English, sometimes in Spanish, but either way you don’t have to send the new Liahona with the conference talks. As to that problem with the investigators coming to church… we had 7 show up yesterday, and I was extremely relieved with that. And because they finally came to church, we’ll have 2 baptisms this week. Keep them in your prayers (Jamier Loma and Jaime Navarro).

(We are sending Coulson a care package - Ed) Anyways, don’t worry to much about whats in the package, you know I’m not exactly one to be picky while I’m in Peru.

Send my love to Zach and Mike. Love you guys too.

And here is a list that the pension would like… its basically a joke, but he made me promise to send it to my family


- USB Lexar de 4 GB
- Pistola eléctrica (TAZER)
- Polo con cuello camisero de la bandera de Estados Unidos (size M)
- Chewy
- Mantequilla de mani (Skippy con crunch)

-La Hermanita Conny

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

6 October 09

October conference was great, but I was only able to watch parts of it in English, and then the rest in Spanish and it really just isn’t the same without hearing their real voices. I didn’t really get as much from Elder Holland’s talk because of that, but it was still pretty amazing. As for how it works, we all go to the stake center to watch it, its that easy. And they do all the translations in the conference center and broadcast it with all the translations already added. It was amazing because we heard so many messages directed exactly to the member’s problems and needs, and those of our investigators too, but it was horrible, because during the Saturday sessions, there was hardly anyone, and the Sunday afternoon session didn’t have many people either, just the Sunday morning session. It made me a little sad that the members don’t take general conference seriously. Its like they take for granted that we as a living church of Christ have prophets to guide us.
We had four investigators with a date to get baptized this week, but not one of them showed up to conference. It was a little bit disheartening, especially now that they can’t get baptized this week, and so many messages that were directed straight to their needs. Looks like we’re gonna be teaching a whole lot about the Sabbath day this week. Any suggestions on getting people to the church are not only welcomed, but needed. We need to change something to get more of the members to come to the church every Sunday.

Thanks for all you’re support, I love you guys and you’re always in my prayers, especially my first baby niece that’s coming on her way. Whenever I see a little girl playing in the streets I think about Calder and Ivy and say a quick pray for you. (There’s a little girl playing outside now)

Mayce and Ethan, come on guys, I need to know how you're doing, write me a quick note.
Calder and Ivy, you too.
Becca and Davis, really?

Monday, September 28, 2009

28 September 09

(Question, have you seen Elder Hales, from the Canyon Gate Ward, yet-Editor) As to Elder Hales, nope. Haven’t seen him yet cause he’s still in Espinar, which isn’t exactly in my zone… but every change meeting I have it in my head to look for him. Maybe this next change meeting (21 oct) I’ll get to talk with him for a bit. As to the meetings we have, every Monday morning we have a zone study, and every Wednesday we have district meetings, and then once every change we have a multi-zone meeting with president, and then an interview every change too. Work visits come by every now and again too. Tonight my companion is gonna go work with one of the zone leaders (Elder Johnson) and the other (Elder Hoyos) is gonna come work with me in Lobitos. It’ll be the first work exchange I’ve had with a zone leader, but with district leaders it’s more common. We had one with our DL (Elder Utani) about 2 days ago.
Being a trainer… let’s see… first, I have to do all the planning, I have to make all the phone calls, and I have to teach for most of the lessons because he’s a bit nervous to teach. He’s a good teacher when he’s not scared, so once he gets over that he’ll be fine. I have to teach him some of the stuff President Elmer taught us when he wasn’t here, how to present the Book of Mormon and stuff like that. And we have to work on memorizing scriptures and the points of the lesson that we need to touch.
Oh ya, we have 6 people with a baptismal date, but now the real test is seeing if they’ll do what it takes to be baptized. The biggest problem we have in this sector is getting them to go to church. We teach a bunch of lessons, we have service activities sometimes, we get people to accept a date to get baptized… but they don’t come to church. We’ll drop by their house early in the morning and they aren’t there, or they don’t answer cause they’re sleeping, or they went to the market, or they’re at their friend’s house. It’s sad, but we’re working on some different ways to get them to church, cause something’s gotta change.
Something to send me…
well now we can watch any movie or video of the church, so if you have some cool videos for a family Home Evening or something like that, that would be cool

Love you guys, I’ll send you that video when I get the sd card

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

21 Sept 2009

Well ya, I wrote you last week, and when I tried to send the email the server kicked me off the website, along with almost all the other elders too. It was just great. Anyways, that’s cool that when I finish my first year in the mission, David’s (Coulson's cousin-ED) just gonna be getting to the MTC. Its weird to think we’re all at this point in our lives already. Its like I never thought it would actually come up.
Anyways, my new companion is Elder Pizarro, he’s here from Lima, a place called Villa Salvador. He’s three years older than me, but he’s still my baby boy. Ya, looks like I just had a kid! Whooo!!! I beat Calder and Ivy to the punch. Ya, right now he has a little over a week in the mission, which means I’m training, and I’m senor companion, and I have a lot more responsibilities. Its interesting… but ya, that just the way it is. Anyways, this isn’t even really his mission. His assigned mission is Venezuela, but he has to wait for his visa to come through before he takes off, which means he’ll stay here for up to 6 months waiting. And like all the new missionaries, he’s really afraid, and nervous, but he’s coming along really quick because I’m making him challenge people to baptism. That’s what my companions did to me to, and now its really easy to do.
As to my sector… Lobitos, or in English, Little Wolves… its pretty big, and we have a lot of work to do. Oh, and we have a mega-shopping mall in my sector too, called Minka, so we can pretty much find whatever we need at any time.
And with every one of our investigators, the problem we have is just finding them. Its like they’re always working or playing soccer or volleyball and we never have time to teach them, and then they won’t be in their homes on Sunday so they can’t come to church. It makes it really difficult, but ya, we’re still working with them. More than anything though, we need to work with the new converts. Its kinda funny that right when my last comp left, his converts started to come back to church. Anyways, we have to work a lot with getting the inactive members back to church, so our baptisms are gonna fall a little bit, but I’m still happy when I see two or three families coming back to church. Pensionista… Hermana Julia… Not too much to say, but we live above the pension, with the bishop, his wife and daughter (about 40 years old). She’s really cool, and thanks to her I actually made it through my last change. I talked to her a lot and she helped me be a lot more patient.

Know that I'm doing a lot better now that i have a different companion, and I'm am very grateful for your prayers. Love you guys

Friday, September 18, 2009

August 2009

A whole months worth of emails from Elder Huntington - Editor

Ya, so Calder, I'd probably go with Clara or Harley (Coulson's 1st niece and our 1st granddaughter and now they are thinking Piper as well-Ed) . And ya, so i had my first argument with my companion this week, which was weird because i realized that i could actually argue in Spanish, and again because we had to argue. Its not what i ever thought that I would experience in the mission. but ya, i'm taking Dallin's advice whole heartedly about that 'if you're gonna laugh about it later, laugh about it now' thing. So almost all of the time i have a smile on my face and i think he resents me even more for that. I have no idea what to do about this whole situation, but i figure if its only for about 3 more weeks, i can deal. I never really had to try to test my patience before, but right now i'm definitely feeling would i would call growing pains. - (Coulson is so mellow that we have a hard time trying to figure out how come someone would not get along with him, now has a new Companion and things are much better - I almost left this out, and I did leave out some particulars, but this may happen to any missionary - Ed)

As to how my days are, we teach a lot, and its even better when we go on splits because i can actually teach with the spirit, and we almost always meet our daily goals. We find about 20 new investigators every week, but we end up falling through with most of them because my companion doesn't want to follow up. A baptism fell through this week too, i don't exactly know why, but some of the members said that its because he saw Elder Miranda do some things that weren't exactly things that missionaries should do. Hopefully we can save him and a few others, because Daniel, a young fella of about 80 years, has a date on the 29th.

And as for you Jesse (Coulson's sister Becca's new brother in law-ED), enjoy your time the the MTC, i found the best friends in my mission there, and that is way too weird to beleive that there is actually an MTC in Ghana. And don't even worry about the time, it just flies.

Love you all!!!! Just keep on smiling :)

As to what to send in the birthday package, ties are great, cd’s of Disney music would be cool (Aladin and Mulan) and I thank you so much for your support. In these last few weeks I’ve been thinking of Vegas a lot. And if you could, send me a
picture of Vegas too so I can show the pension, they want to see my house and my city.
I love you guys so much. Tell angela I’ll send her a letter soon. Whoo, 20 years old on Saturday!!!!

I got the birthday package and it was amazing! The pension enjoys the music too, and I’ll be able to listen to music next change, so I’m pretty pumped for that. We had 3 baptisms this month. Friday we baptized a young guy that just fell from heaven to be baptized in our ward, and Saturday I baptized the viejito. It was a little difficult to actually do the baptism, but he’s way cool. The members always call him ‘the prophet Daniel’ because he has the white hair and the many many

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

27 July 2009

Well thats pretty cool that Kevin´s engaged now (Coulson's Cousin - ED). Looks like the family just keeps changing more and more while i´m away. And now that I think about it, there´s a good chance that Robert (Cousin just returning from Argentina Mission) will be married too by the time me and Dallin (cousin serving mission in the Ukraine - ED) get back. Well this week we have the change meeting, so there´s a chance i´ll have a new comp or a new area. I think I’ll probably stay here in 200 Millas for two more changes before I leave. Which means I’ll spend my first birthday of the mission here in Lima. Anyways, send me an update of how everything went during the family reunion. An update of everything that happened this week… I’m happy because we baptized a joven this Saturday and confirmed her (Hitsbel) and Zefy, the niña that we baptized last Sunday.

Oh, and Zefy finally learned a little about my name, because now she doesn’t call me el gringo, but now its Elder Timbre, which means doorbell, because they pronounce the end of Huntington like a doorbell **Tin Ton**
It makes me laugh, and hopefully this next change we can baptize her dad.

Love you all

6 Months in the mission and it is a tradition to burn a tie (who knew? - Ed)

Monday, July 13, 2009

13 July 2009

Ok, maybe i just forgot, but what "move to Albuquerque"? (sister and brother in law, Mayce and Ethan are moving to Albuquerque for Ethan to go to University of New Mexico law school - Ed) and wow, that would be so amazing if i could see them (Uncle Kevin goes to Argentina to pick up cousin Robert from his mission, with a side trip home to Peru where Kevin served a mission a century or so, ago - Ed). Actually i pass my the airport every Monday and Wednesday to go to meetings as a zone and district. the airport is just 5 or 10 minutes away from my house in a bus (which bus really is more like a really really old van). So at least i think i would be able to get permission to see them at the airport when they get in on the 21st, but our new president is much more relaxed than our other president. More focused on the spirit, which i really like, than memorization and a strict way to teach. I'll talk to our zone leaders to see if i can get permission to call president. As for being in Lima, i don't think that'll be a problem. I'm pretty sure my companion is going to have a change on the 29th of July, and then the next change isn't until the 9th of September. So my next email should have an answer if i can see them or not, but if not, you can check out how close the house is on google maps, my house is in Lima, Callao, San Juan Mesias, Ave. Arequipa, Manzana LL1. Its just north of the airport (Jorge Chavez) by a little bit.

Coulson's Daily Agenda

Well, we had two baptisms this week, Karn and Ariana. I baptized Karen and Elder Marcelo baptized Ariana. It was just a small event, but considering its the one thing we work to do more than anything else, it was a special day. And i confirmed for the first time too. That was a little interesting. To give blessings and confirmations and things of that nature we use the tú form (Common form of Spanish - Ed), but as a missionary learning Spanish, i pretty much only know usted (formal Spanish - Ed). I always mess up a bit with that. But it was cool to be able to do that.
Anyways, gotta go, but i love you all, and thanks for the package in advance (Mom's Care Package - Ed). Tell me a little bit about the palm pre (Mom and Dad and brother Calder's new cell phones - Ed)

Monday, July 6, 2009

Last few weeks

Another picture of Gloria (new convert) at a ward activity night.

June 14th
Well, we have a few investigators, but the most difficult thing is actually getting a hold of them. Karen and her daughter have baptismal date for the fourth of July, Pilar and her sister have already listened to everything and would accept a baptismal date too except for their dad, who we haven’t gotten a hold of yet. The same story with Janet and her children Janet and Carlos. Her husband isn’t exactly keen on them getting baptized, and we haven’t been able to talk with him either. Sergio likes to listen and he´s easily the investigator that understands the most, but he studies a lot and doesn’t have much time except on Saturdays. Good thing he studies a lot though, cause i can help him with English. Victor listens, doesn´t talk much though, and he has another problem because he doesn´t live in our sector, but he spends all day here. We try to teach him every once and a while, but without him in our sector we can’t really do anything, including talk to his parents. Hitsbel is interesting... she lives in a school... last time we taught her she was pretty busy, so we offered to help, and surprisingly she accepted, so we cut out letters and colored in pictures for about an hour for service. It was the first time I’d been in a school like that for a while. Luis is a great guy, we just have to find a way for him to accept baptism. His brother Eric comes along with us occasionally because he’s a recent convert, and I’m hoping that he’ll help us with Luis. Annie is receptive, but doesn’t have time on Sunday to come to church. We’ve talked about it a lot, but she is very loyal to her mom, which is great, but her mom needs help on Sunday mornings with work, so she puts that above going to church. Her brother Eduardo is another story. He’s a physics student, so we have that in common and we get along pretty well, but he’s also agnostic, so we have our differences. Anyway, most of our lessons with him are focused on testifying of God and getting him to pray, because he doesn't like to admit there is a God, so he doesn’t like to pray to something he doesn’t know. Its interesting, but when we taught him the Plan of Salvation he seemed a lot more interested. It was the first time that he only asked me one question. Normally is closer to ten, so i could tell something was different. The question he asked was how i could believe in this plan and in science at the same time. And oh, i was ready for that. We talked about it, how is physics we accept certain rules before we verify that they’re true and related it to accepting Christ and his atonement so that we can repent, pray, and know for a certainty that they exist and work. Its my first experience with someone here that doesn´t really beleive in God, so its really enlightening to see him working towards that change. Lizbet (or Elizabeth, i don´t really know) likes to listen too, but doesn´t really have a testimony, so we´re trying to help her with that, but she´s told us that once she knows that its true, she´ll get baptized, she just needs to know first. Hopefully her boyfriend will help her with that. He was a missionary that returned after two changes because his knee needed to get a surgery. And then there´s her sister too, who is a little more difficult to get a hold of, but ready to listen too.
Wow, there´s more too, but i´m out of time, so i gotta let my comp write his family. This week is changes, so i´ll let you know next monday if i´m with a new comp or in a new area. Love you guys a ton, and Daddy, early Happy Father´s Day!!!! More about that next week since its closer to the actual date.

A few more pictures of the Ward Activity night.

July 6th
Ya, it wasn´t a computer crash (we did not have an email last week, this is why-Ed), but my comp was sick, from last Friday to about Tuesday he was down with a fever and some other stuff, so we didn´t have a chance to go to internet. Anyways, for the same reason we haven´t had much chance to work, but we do have two baptisms coming up this Saturday, Karen and her daughter Ariana. We´ll have her baptismal interview tomorrow, along with a multi-zone meeting with President Tyler (first time we´ll meet him), so tomorrow should make out to be a pretty long day. And then we have interviews with him the next day, so this week we´ll be low in numbers again. I hate looking at the numbers when we have sick days, or weeks with a lot of meetings, because it always feels like we haven´t done enough. Anyways, where did Bec and Davis go on their cruise? (4-day Catalina, Ensenada and San Diego-Ed) I figure all i need to do is marry someone who likes to scuba dive (Yeah-Ed) and I'll have a great honeymoon. Go to some warm-water diving spot for a while.
Anyways, wasted most of my time uploading the pictures, so I'll just end it here. Language isn't really a problem anymore, not too bad anyways. Oh, and send me some surprises with the package if you haven't already sent it : ) and if you can, send some salsa cause my pensionista wants to try some. Her son is in Quaxaca Mexico and he tried to explain it to her but she wants to try some and they don't really have it here. Love you guys.

The family went to Park City to celebrate Grandma's 80th B'day, so Coulson had a cake made in her honor in Peru.

Picture of Coulson in his Apartment

Monday, June 8, 2009

7 June 09

Short message to Davis, the parents really arent as crazy as they seem. (Whats with that? - Editor and Parent)

Ya, so this past Saturday we baptized Gloria, and there is a picture attached of her, me and my comp. The water was freezing, and there was an 8 year old getting baptized too, but because the water was so cold he wouldn't go all the way into the water. Took him nearly half an hour to get baptized. But aside from that, all the messages were good and when Gloria bore her testimony it was incredibly strong. I was the one to baptize her, solely by chance, because she wrote si on one piece of paper and no on another, crumpled them up, threw them in the air and i picked up the one that said si. After that, we asked why she didn't want her cousin Lorenzo to baptize her, and she said that Lorenzo will always be there for her, but i want to remember the Elders that knocked on my door and taught me, and i think this is a good way to be able to remember you. It was interesting how she explained it... or at least how i understood it.
And now that we have those baptisms, we need to challenge a lot more, because we don't have many more with a baptismal date.
Well, this past Tuesday was an interview with President, and that was great, we finally had some good food (pancakes and tacos) for breakfast and lunch. But more than that, i actually had a good interview. My first was hardly anything, just a few questions about my health and the language, but this time it was actually very helpful. I expressed my concern that i still don't know hardly anything about the forms or anything because my trainer never fills anything out except the baptismal record. He knows that I have had a bad childhood on the mission, so hopefully it will just get better. And next change we will have our new President. Interesting start for the two years.
Love you guys.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

1 June 2009

Well I have a pretty cool story, because Gloria is going to be baptized this Saturday, and Jhonatan just got baptized last Saturday. But i think i´ll just stick to Gloria´s story. So we were talking with her a little bit after a lesson, and after teaching her friend Paula. We just kind of casually asked how she knew our message was true, you know, how she got an answer to her prayer. I really didn´t expect the answer she gave us. She just said, ¨Well i didn´t ever pray to know if your message was true.¨ And i was like... what!? But it was really cool, because of the next thing she said. ¨I didn´t need to, when you were teaching me I could feel the Spirit telling me, so when I prayed, it wasn´t to know if it was true, it was more just thanking God for telling me that it was true.¨ And then i was like... wow. But it reminded me of the gifts of the spirit, especially in D&C 46:14, where one of the gifts is to believe in our words.
Anyways, a quick update, we had a meeting at the CCM a few days ago to listen to President Snow of the 70, which was definitely interesting and lead me to focus my personal study in a bunch of new areas of the gospel. It was really enlightening what he said about the trend of brothers in the Book of Mormon and in the history of the church. Calder, it made me miss you a bunch. But ya, its was really interesting how he compared the influence of brothers like Sam and Nephi, and then Nephi and Lehi later on, and Joseph and Hyrum. Pretty cool talk. News from this past week, we had a baptism and also had a change for the day and i worked with Elder Chuan, and really, i hope that we can be companions eventually, because he is really just focused on helping people. And because we have another baptism this week, we´ll have another change. I´m thinking this is motivation for me to challenge more people to baptism.
Love you all!!!

Monday, May 25, 2009

200 Millas, in Lima

Anyways, a little about 200 Millas... its huge (Coulson's current area-ed). We have to take a bus to get to the other side, where its basically like a new area. Its a bit poorer than where we live, and that's where we have a bunch of investigators. But we have plenty on the side where we live too, so we have to plan our days to go visit one side, and then go and visit the other at another time. Its interesting, more so because my companion doesn´t like to plan. Or study. But he sure does love to sleep. So that's a little about my companion, his name is Elder Marcelo, and he´s from Puenta Piedra, just about an hour in bus from here. Its a little difficult, but hey, the mission isn´t supposed to be easy. At least he teaches pretty well. My Spanish is coming along, and i feel like i can teach and share experiences pretty well, its just a little hard to understand everything because i really have to focus, and i still miss out on a lot of what they say, but its not really a problem.
As to our investigators, we have a baptism this Saturday, a joven named Jhonatan (and yes, that's how its spelled). But the other investigators that i find is really exciting to teach is Gloria. She is living with her cousin right now, and he´s the secretary of the ward, and he´s getting ready to go on his mission, so he helps her out by talking with her, about his mission and everything else. She has a baptismal date too, along with a few other of our investigators.
My health, its fine, but my companion got his wisdom teeth out (3) so he was down for the count for about a week, where i got some down time to read my scriptures in Spanish and work on organizing the area book, which was in horrible disorder when i started. But i think that now we´ll finally be able to use it with some efficiency.
I don´t really know too much about how to do everything with the papers, and it doesn´t help that i can´t ask my companion cause he doesn´t use it, but i´m learning little by little.
I love you guys, and i´m looking forward to getting some pictures from the wedding (Coulson's sister Becca and Davis MacKay are getting married June 27th-ed), and well... everything. And i´ll send you some more of my pictures next week.

Monday, May 11, 2009

Alright, I finally got you some pictures. Be happy :)

It was great talking to you all, but it really came as a shock to me that I couldn´t talk with grammy (Coulsons Grandma Huntington passed away on Mothers Day morning - ed). I just thought that she would be there to talk with for a little bit. I don´t even know what to think... its something that I teach people everyday, the plan of salvation, but its a little bit different when its something that you have to actually apply in your life. Grandpa, I know you´re the one that hurts most of all, because she is your partner for eternity and she isn´t at your side right now. But for the pain you feel now, imagine the joy you´ll have with her after this life. Just like in 2 Ne 2, without pain there is no joy, and with immense sorrow comes the redemption of your happiness once you´re reunited. All you have to do is look forward to the future. You still have more people to help here and I´m one of them.
Occasionally when we´re teaching I´ll have one of your poems pop into my head that I want to share with the investigator, but it does not really work with the translation from English to Spanish. I love you Grandpa, and I´ll talk to you again at Christmas!
love you all!!!!

Monday, May 4, 2009

4 May 09

Anyways, wow this week went by fast. We were both a little sick Thursday, so we didn´t head out after the multizona and Friday it was worse s our pensionista wouldn´t let us leave. She is extremely protective of us. Its kind scary, but she really does love us and want to help us in any way she possibly can. We had to do a bunch of stuff for the zone, so i´m learning a bit of what you need to do as a zone leader, which is horrible because i think that President is gonna have me be a zone leader eventually as he hinted in my interview.

So the interview with President was cool, it was extremely short, just a few questions, he was really nice and he didn´t mention anything about where i would be going, but its pretty much a sure thing that i´m gonna be in a different place next time you guys get an email. I think it´ll probably be in Lima, but i don´t know. And as to the camera situation... its horrible, i left my cables in Puerto so I can´t recharge my camera, its dead so i can´t take pictures here, and I can´t connect it to the computer cause it has a specific cable and no one has an sd card reader and i can´t find an electronic store in my sector. Don´t really know when i´ll be able to get you guys some photos, but i´m trying, this is kind of an upsetting situation with my camera right now.

Dad, as to your questions ya, everythings fine, my eyes are a bit red still but they feel normal (except the pollution in Lima is beyond imagination) and i´ve felt fine since i´ve been here except for a little bit of gripe. Ya, í´m keeping a journal, its tiny, but its there and i´m writing in it quite a bit, not nearly everyday, but enough.

I love you all, sorry i can´t spend more time writing you, but i gotta go, love you all. And ya there is a time limit for the Mothers Day call, like 30 min.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Mail via the "Pouch"

Thank you for your inquiries about Coulson's mailing address through the Church's pouch system. The caveat is that only postcards and letters may be sent, nothing heavy and no packages. That address is:

Elder Dale Coulson Huntington
Peru Lima Central Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150

Monday, April 27, 2009

Leaving the Amazon

Vaña actually progressed so quickly that she wanted to up her baptismal date and i baptized her 2 days ago along with Jose Luis. And his dad received the priesthood yesterday too. Its a bit of a sad story there because he electrocuted his pointer fingers to the point where you can see the bone on both of his hands. He can’t work right now so we’re trying to help him through the branch. (question how does the branch interact with recent converts-ed) As to the recent members, we take on that job, but we frequently use other members to help us. The branch doesn’t really have much of a missionary program within itself, and we’re focused on trying to turn it into a stake. (question-how does the world economy effect your area? Ed) And the recession has no affect here. Most people go to the mountain to mine (for gold), or to do other things for work. Actually a girl just got back from 2 months in the mountain and we’re starting to teach her.
But as to everything else... conjunctivitis sucks, but after that started to heal up I got a massive headache and started throwing up so I had to go to the hospital, which is not the best experience. Jungle doctors aren’t the best doctors in Peru, and Peru doesn’t have the best doctors anyway. I actually just got back from the hospital again where they told me I have a pulse of 48 and it’s a little bit irregular, so President might be sending me to Lima to see a specialist, which is a bit of a bummer. And by might I mean probably tomorrow. I love the jungle, and the people here. The environment is a little difficult, but I hope I get sent back here.

Mary and I received a wonderful call from Coulsons mission president assuring us that Coulson would be just fine. He will stay in Lima for at least a few weeks to be checked on. His mission president is a respiratory specialist doctor in his civilian life, and confirmed what Coulson told us about the jungle doctors. They try hard but just are don’t have the equipment or training for treating most stuff. I am sure that Coulson did not have that low a blood pressure, and his next email confirms that he is doing great. His blessing from President Larkin is comforting in times like this. Part of this amazing blessing was concerning his health based on his being obedient (he is) and this blessing is proving prophetic.

Coulsons next email from Lima - Ed

Yep, Elder Peterson (Coulsons new companion – ed) is from Snowflake Arizona and speaks English, but he is also half Mexican so he has been speaking Spanish for more time than he’s been speaking English. Its great to be able to talk with him a little bit in English just to get to know him a little better and he’s helping me with my Spanish way more than my other companion did. By the way, he’s a Suns fan too, he’s favorite player is Nash and he’s very upset that they didn’t make it to playoffs and that the Cardinals lost the Superbowl. Its way funny to go out tracting and have people say stuff about me being a gringo, but they don’t say anything about him because he’s a little bit darker. It’s funny because the people here really like the people from the states, and he always has to say that he’s from Arizona so that they know. I’m way happy to be here, and my eyes are doing fine, just a little bit red still. My heads fines, nothing wrong accept a little cold. Lima is definitely a bit different than Puerto, but I like it here too. For the first time in my life someone tried to rob me. We were just sitting outside the church (cause all the churches have gates and spikes around them) waiting to interview someone because my companion is also the zone leader, and a guy came up asking what would happen if he pulled out his knife and cut me to the bone. It was funny cause he was scrawny and we could tell he didn’t have a knife, but it was an interesting experience to have right outside of a church building. The work here is a lot harder than the work was in Puerto. No one wants to let us in, it’s harder to find people in their homes even if they say they’ll be there, and because my companion is zone leader so we have to do a bunch of other stuff too. Sadly, because he’s a zone leader I’ll be getting transferred on the 6th so that he can have someone that can help him out, but it’s exciting to think about where I’ll head off to. It’ll probably be in Lima, but you never know.
And geez, Calder and Ivy are having a baby and they don’t even email me to let me know (yeah, what’s with that Calder - Ed)? What is that? Wow, right when I leave all this stuff starts happening. I’m going to come back to a completely different family.
Oh, and I left my camera cables in Peurto, so they’re sending them to me now, and i still can’t get any photos to you, I’m really sorry about that, and I can’t take photos here in Lima cause my cameras dead, but I’ll send them when I can. And just so you know, if you send letters through the pouch its a lot quicker, let everyone know that, cause I got my first letters, and some were from the middle a February because they were sent in the mail. Grandma knows how to send pouch, and I’m sure aunt Zan does too. Give Grandma and Grandpa my love, Becca and Davis too. Let me know how the plans are coming for the wedding. Both of them, cause that’s amazing that Chandler and Karen (Chandler is Coulsons cousin – Ed) are finally going through with it (engaged - Ed).

Monday, April 6, 2009

April 6th 2009

Sorry guys, but at the very end of my email the internet cut out so I only have a little bit of time to write, so i´m just gonna say a few things. First, in Gary E. Stevenson talk, I thought about our house for the little virtual tour and I got a little home sick, but at the same time I realized how great of a home you made for me and I want to thank you so much for giving me a home of refuge. Next, a cool story that happened. Last Monday I got sick but for the last two hours of the day I felt like i needed to just stick it out and walk it off, and that night we found a family that let us in right away. At first it wasn´t really spiritual because the girls were texting, and two little boys were running around the whole time, but the next appointment was a lot better, Vaña, one of the girls had read the chapter we gave her and we answered her questions and committed her to be baptized. That was pretty cool, but what was even better was when we were talking to her mother yesterday and she said that she had had an experience where an evil spirit was trying to make her do bad things, and after a few hours of this, she grabbed the Bible and the Spirit left, and even though she had that experience and a strong testimony of the Bible, she never let other missionaries in the house until us and she felt really good about it and happy that Vaña is getting baptized. We´ll work on the rest of the family now, but Vaña will be baptized on the 25th.
Thanks for the short updates, keep sending them, and I´ll send pictures next time when I have more time, sorry the internet cut out so I didn´t have time to do it today. And if you could, send some pictures to me because I didn´t bring any so that I wouldn´t miss you guys too much. Oh, and by the way, I can only send one email during p-day, so its just this one to the family, no specific ones anymore, sorry guys. And what language do they even speak in Ghana? Start studying now Tyler.
I love you so much and have you in my prayers all the time.

Monday, March 30, 2009

I am in the Amazon jungle!

Alrighty Daddy,
Well it takes forever to read and open emails on these computers, so I don´t have a lot of time, but thanks for all the information. I´d appreciate the occasional letter now just cause email is so difficult to use here.
And now, as to where ´here´is... welcome to the jungle. I´m in a place called Puerto Maldanado, a little town next to the river Madre de Dios. Middle of the Amazon Jungle for the central mission. Its ridiculously hot and humid, and the bugs here are bigger, stronger, and more of them than I´ve ever seen in my life before. 100 percent deet does nothing to hinder their attacks, but really its not that bad, I´m getting used to it. One thing that's really different here is that tons and tons of people have motorcycles. Its weird. And they aren´t really motorcycles, they´re more like the trials bikes that we had. Roughly, I would guess that there are 20 or 25 bikes to every one car. And along with the horrible quality of the bikes, they also fit up to 5 people on each one. That's not normal here, but 3 is a very common number to have on a single bike. Its definitely different out here.
I´ve already had my first three baptisms while you were wondering where I was. It was amazing, and at the same time, nerve racking to baptize in Spanish. I was especially nervous because each had 4 names so I was sure that I would forget and have to do the baptism three or four times, but it went fine and I didn´t mess up at all. I didn´t have a lot of time to get to know them, but they all seem to like me a lot, even though i can hardly speak to them or understand them. It really frustrating not to be able to understand or speak. I´m going to have to learn patience with myself. But at least I can kinda talk with my comp, and i can read Spanish alright, so that is good.
And about my companion, his name is Elder Guevara, and he´s from a town up farther north in Peru, and he knows, as far as I can tell, no English. That is fine with me though, I think it will help me learn Spanish quicker. However, he knows the doctrine well enough to teach without me being able to help. He´s had a year in the mission, so I´m trying to learn as much as I can from him. Sorry I didn´t have more time, love you all.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

2 weeks March 2009

Wow, I was wondering when I'd be getting the email telling me that Becca was going to get married. Didn't think it would be quite this soon though. Anway’s, I forgot to tell you guys this last week, but during the tracting last Saturday I met a guy who knew Calder. Weird right? His name was Richard Royal and he served with Calder in Teguc. We just saw him walking down the street and he waved us over, talked for a little bit, and I asked where he served his mission, he said Tegucigalpa and I was like... what? He looked at my name tag and laughed a little bit. I definitely didn't expect to see anyone that knew someone in my family.
We only talked for a little bit because we had some other places to go teach, but it was just one of those weird little experiences. And this Saturday we went to one of the richer parts of Lima, called Mira Flores to go teach less active members. Its was great because that’s what we'd been doing for the past two times and I still hadn't gotten into a house to actually teach the member. In the other area we just knocked on the doors, and either someone would answer and say they didn't have time and shut it right away, or they wouldn't answer the door at all. And, supposedly, because this area was richer there was a smaller chance to get into the house or even talk with the members at all. I figured my 0 in 12 house run would continue to 0 in 18, but when we started knocking on doors people actually answered.
The first house, or apartment, we had to walk down a dark little tunnel and climb up a pretty narrow staircase up to a place where there was Enimem playing in the background. We walked past that music, and past a house that was blaring Coldplay. Knocked on the door, waited for roughly 4 full minutes, and then a guy came out of the home that was playing Coldplay and came to talk to us. Sure enough, he was the guy we were looking for, or at least part of the family. His mom and little brother were gone, but we still gave a pretty good lesson, talked with him about his work, and had some Chicha Morada (purple corn juice), which is starting to grow on me. And after that we had 3 other homes open their doors to us, the last of which was in a high rise condo building overlooking part of the business district. There we taught a mom and her son, and three friends of the mom who were non members. They were really friendly toward me, probably because I'm white, and liked that I was trying to learn their language and wanted to help me whenever they could. That fact I particularly enjoyed because I could tell that they were actually listening to what I was saying.
Anyways, I'll tell you a little about my new companion, his name is Elder Huesa, he's from Lima, and he speaks so much more clearly than my other companion. It’s really a relief that I can almost understand everything he says. I feel like we teach really well together, we're bonding pretty well, and I'm trying to teach him a little bit of English, mostly because he really likes songs and hymns in English. He's trying to help me with my vocab in Spanish, which is also great for me. He's great and he'll get better as he learns from PME. Love you both.
-Elder Coulson Huntington

Wow, that’s going to be so awesome to be related to Jesse (MacKay-Becca’s new brother in law - ed), and I’m sure that Cameron will be excited. And as for being Ward Missionaries (Dad’s new calling – ed), that’s going to be amazing. All I know here is that all the families we actually get in to talk with are so helpful and loving. I’m excited to get my first real field companion, and that will be in just about 7 days now. I’m not sure if you should expect an email next Wednesday because I’ll be leaving the CCM on Tuesday and I really just don’t know what’s going to be happening. At the same time, you can probably expect pictures next time I email you, awesome, I know. So I think that that will be pretty awesome. Oh, and I was able to go to the temple and do baptisms for the dead in Spanish, and confirmations in Spanish too, its was pretty awesome, but scary at the same time. Sorry I didn’t have much time today, but that’s just the way it goes sometimes
Love you lots, and good luck with the new callings.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

4 March 09

Well my first companion is gone now, he left this morning to go to Arequipa. It was a kind of sad good bye because we (the North Americans in our room) were finally getting close to all of the Latinos in our room. Anyways, we´ll all be getting new companions tonight, along with five new North Americans, two of them Sisters. I have exactly three more weeks before I´m out of the CCM (Centro de Capacitación Misional). Its kind of a weird time right now because all of the districts just got switched, we´re getting new companions because all of the Latinos left, getting new teachers, and more North Americans. At least this means that I´m out of being district leader. At least I think so considering I´m not even in the same district anymore.
Thanks for letting me know about Dallin, that's so awesome with him being in Ukraine already. I hope he´s ready for the language.
My Spanish is coming along, but its pretty tough. I can give a pretty basic first and second lesson, and i´m starting to understand a little bit more of what people are saying during the conversations, but it´s still difficult. I´m not too worried because I don´t really expect to know the language for a few months into the mission, but i´m glad i´m here learning instead of the Provo MTC because we learn a lot faster here. As to the food problem, I don´t think anything of it because its not a bad reaction, its just my body getting used to the food here. Pollo y arroz cada dia aquí en el CCM. Just how it is. But today was President Groberg´s present to us. He bought us Pizza Hut, which was about the best thing ever, and then after that we went on a tour of Lima. We went to an Olive Garden (not the restaurant) to see one of the oldest gardens still preserved. It was somewhere around 450 years old and it was pretty cool to see an olive press and things like that. Also very cool was having a little Peruvian kid shine my shoes (the Born´s). We went to the beach, shopping, downtown into the business district, and through a few parks too. Don´t worry, I got quite a few pictures to send you once I can, just wait for about 3 more weeks.
Also, while we were shopping, I bought a shirt that has the Nazca calender, which is pretty awesome, but I also committed the girl who sold me the shirt to go to church. Oh, and a bird pooped on me, which wasn´t so awesome... I´ve come to the conclusion that birds feel too safe here. When we walk through the middle of them they just walk out of the way of our feet instead of flying away. Honestly, they treat pigeons way too well, they don´t fear us at all.
These past three weeks have gone by ridiculously fast. The three weeks in the Provo MTC felt like roughly three months, and the past three weeks here have felt like three days. Its really just messing with my sense of time. I´ll probably be leaving on the 24th out of the MTC, which is a weird thought, but after having a little bit of proselyting experience I feel a lot more ready. And President Groberg gave a little update that my mission is going to have a March that will set records for the mission, so one more thing to be excited about. Thank you dad, I appreciated that sports update, however here only soccer is important. I love you both and give Calder & Ivy, Becca, Mayce & Ethan my love when you see them. Elder Huntington

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Elder Huntington's address

Coulson asked that I post his mailing address via the Missionary Pouch Mail system. Evidently, it is delivered weekly to Peru. It is:
Elder Dale Coulson Huntington
Peru Lima Central Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, Utah 84130-0150
His e-mail address is

Well, I didn´t get to go to the temple today, we have to go meet with Interpol at 9 so we don´t get kicked out of the country. Tons of fun. Anyways, I wish I could send pictures, but here is even worse than the Provo MTC with the computer situation, so I don´t think I´ll be able to get you any pictures until I´m out of here and on a computer somewhere in a little cafe, but I promise, they´re pretty good.
Its weird to think that my companion is gonna be leaving next Wednesday, cause then we´ll have a few more north Americans come in and we´ll have three different Latinos in our room. At least with them we´ll have a little bit of talking skills. I´m actually teaching a bit now, and making half way decent sense. Usually I just bare my testimony instead of going deep into the subject, but i´m starting to understand people when they talk to me. Maybe in three weeks I´ll be able to actually go out and teach.
Oh ya, Saturday was fun, we went tracting. We were supposed to visit 4 less-active member families and teach them the first lesson, but instead of that, because none of the families were home, we went tracting for 5 hours. I think the Lord knew I needed help so he sent me Latinos who spoke English. There were four people around one of the side street mini-markets and after we passed by and were deciding to turn left or right, i started walking back to talk with them, turns out two of them spoke English and wanted to practice, so with the permission of my companion and talked with Inedska and Sergio for quite a while in English. I didn´t give the whole first lesson, but I did explain the Book of Mormon and challenged them to read some chapters and pray about it. All in all we gave out four Books of Mormon and talked to about 3 other people, but we didn´t have any more to give out. As far as I can tell, talking with people on the street is a lot more effective than knocking on doors.
I have to admit, as much as I love playing soccer, I miss basketball at the church, its just so much better to have a small group than to try and have 30-40 people playing soccer. And on that note, I´m surprised that Peruvians aren´t better at soccer. I know that they´ve grown up with it, but they still just can´t play all that well. Well I have to go get ready to meet with Interpol, so let me know what you want to hear about.

By the way, we still get DearElder down here once a week through the pouch mail system.
Post my e-mail on the blog in case people care to write me


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

1st News from Peru

Coulson left for Peru on Wednesday, February 11 and we have been anxiously awaiting the first news from the Peru Mission Training Center. We hope you enjoy:

Ya, I arrived fine. The trip down wasn´t bad, we talked to some people on the plane, learned a little bit of Peruvian culture, learned that Phelps got all his metals stripped, its was fun, but after that its just been hectic. I was doing so good writing in my journal everyday until got here. I practically have no time at all for anything on my own. In Provo we had MDT where we could choose what to do, but nothing like that here, and I don´t understand what people say about latinos not working hard. My companion just does not stop, and neither do the other Latinos in the room. Its horrible because i need breaks occasionally. Oh, and they almost never leave your side except for class. Even in the bathroom. We had to convince them that the mission manual says they don´t have to come with us to the bathroom.
Ya, my Spanish is getting a lot better way more quickly than it was at the MTC, but more importantly, I´m starting to understand them more. I can´t usually say what i want, but i can work my way around it, its the understanding part that gets me. And luckily my companion (Elder Flores) speaks the fastest out of all of them and slurs his words together. Its just grand trying to learn anything from him. But the other Latinos in the room (Elder Orbe and Elder Huaman) speak fairly clearly at least, and we have to try and teach them a little bit of English too, which is interesting cause they can´t make the sounds we make in English. They are fun to hang out with and joke around with, but we honestly don´t see them all that much because we have different classes, and they are going to leave the CCM after three weeks and we´ll get new companions, and new north Americans. Oh, and our group are the only north Americans here right now because they didn´t get any in the last batch of missionaries.
Anyways, about the CCM (Peruvian MTC), its really nice here, the rooms are smaller, but not by much. Except instead of having four people to a room its 6, so its quite a bit more crowded in the rooms. The showers are bigger and as far as i can tell, nicer too. There aren´t many missionaries here though, i would guess somewhere around 80, so you basically get to know everyone fairly well. There are only three buildings (the administration, the dorm, and the cafeteria). The dorm building quadruples as the church, the cleaning room, the dorms, and the class rooms. The soccer field is really nice, turf and full goals. The basketball courts are horrible, international type and I think the rim is only at 9 and a half feet. The teachers are great, but sadly i don´t understand most of what they say, so maybe its just me thinking that they´re great and not knowing the difference. There is Hermano Lopez, Hermano Reigna, and Hermana Narciso. Hermano Lopez taught Justin Hales, so that was kind of cool to be able to talk about for a little bit, and he speaks quite a bit of English, so he gives us a break from Spanish every once and a while. The food here is great, much better than the food at the MTC, and the vegetables are actually edible. Sadly its still hurting my stomach, but I´ll get used to the food eventually. Uncle Kevin was right that its basically bread and rice for nearly every meal, but I don´t mind cause its good food.
As to the weather, its basically exactly like San Diego in the summer time, maybe a little hotter. Hot and sunny, and sometimes hot and cloudy. The good part is that we don´t have to wear our coats everwhere like we did in Provo.

Oh, and President Groberg (the brother of the Elder Groberg that inspire the movie The Otherside of Heaven ) wanted us to tell everyone not to send packages cause they cost a ridiculous amount to get out of customs... if they get to customs. Love to all, Elder Huntington

Monday, February 2, 2009

February 2, 2009

Alright, the missionaries in my district are pretty much just high school kids that if Calder had to deal with he might have wanted to kill them. I like our DL tho, Elder Christensen is from Canada and he really has a missionary attitude about him. I'm definitely glad to be leaving soon.
And on that topic, we got our flight plans on Friday, and we'll be leaving for the airport early on Feb 11, leave at 10 am and get to Lima at midnight. As far as I can tell we won't be having any lay-overs, so its gonna be a long flight. But as I remember, I'll be able to call you when I'm at the airport, but without a stop, I'll probably be calling around 8, give or take an hour.
The spanish is going alright, I feel pretty confident praying in it and I'm starting to feel better about sharing my testimony as well, even though both are fairly simple. I think whats really making me feel comfortable praying in spanish is the fact that I pray roughly 18 times a day in spanish and 1-3 times a day in english.
Oh, and I think Aunt Zan should be getting a quick video of lunch time at the MTC. Its pretty cool because me, Dallin, and Landry are all right next to each other (normally) when we eat. We really don't get to talk much, because honestly all there is to talk about is the gospel and most of the time we're just mentally drained from the massive study load.
And since I'm sure you've had this thought cross your mind, yes, it is very difficult to wake up on time, and its annoying going to sleep at 10:30, and shaving every day is one of the worst experiences I've had so far.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

First e-mail home

Alright, so I made it to my first p-day and everything is going fine so far. Things started to get less hectic once we hit Saturday because thats when gym time starts. Its amazing what an hour of basketball can do for relaxation. Its too bad I'm here in winter though, cause otherwise I would have been able to practice soccer and play some ultimate frisbee.
Anyways, onto the more important stuff, the fireside we had yesterday was amazing. Me and my companion (Elder Griffith) got to the gym nearly twenty minutes early and we still couldn't find any seats, so we had to split up on the end of the isles. Stephen B. Allen spoke about how horrible Utah drivers are, and a few other things like the challenges and adversities that a missionary goes through. A lot of what he said I thought was specifically directed at my district. We're getting closer now that we've gotten past the three day threshold and we're helping eachother out a lot more. Dallin was right about the schedule being ridiculous, but I enjoy it in some ways. Our teacher's are amazing. Hermana Scaife is really weird, but she's a great teacher. Without her saying anything we all know how much she cares, and when she does say it the spirit is just overwhelming. Hermano Shulca is a native from Ecuador, so he helps out a lot too. He doesn't have the feminine touch that Hna Scaife does, but I like listening to his accent, and I think its pretty cool that he played pro soccer in Ecuador when he was fourteen. Hermano Cole teaches us for a few hours on Wednesdays, kind of a sub for Hna Scaife, and he went to Peru on his mission, so come this Wednesday I'm sure I'll have plenty of questions for him.
I'm already excited to leave this place. Its not that the MTC is all that bad, although it kinda is, but I want to go down to Peru and start really learning and talking with people. I know I'm not ready for that yet and thats what I'm trying to prepare for now, but I can't help wanting to be in Peru. I already know how to pray and bare my testimony in Spanish, and I'm starting to understand my teachers more when they try to talk to our class in the language. Its not a lot, but I think its more than I learned in two years of high school.
Oh, and I just got back from the temple. I've almost got everything down, so thats nice, but I like the Las Vegas temple a lot more than the Provo temple. I did my first sealing session (it took forever), but it was really.... ummm... awe inspiring to hear the marriage ceremony.
Anyway, I'm almost out of time so I want to send this out before the browser closes on me. I love you both and want you to know that even though this experience is completely overwhelming right now, its worth it. Thank you so much for teaching me the gospel and teaching me to accept what the Lord wants from me.
Your Son,
Elder Huntington

Saturday, January 24, 2009

First Day

On Wednesday, January 21, 2009 Elder Coulson Huntington entered the Missionary Training Center in Provo, Utah. The day started with a phone call from Elder Huntington's older brother who is studying in Minneapolis, Minnesota calling to wish him well and to tell him he loved him. After breakfast at our favorite breakfast place in Provo, the hour before he checked in was spent at the BYU Museum of Art to see once again the Carl Bloch masterpiece of the Savior at the pool of Bethesda, healing the man of his infirmities. Surrounded by the wonderful pieces of art reminding us of our Savior was an appropriate precursor for the MTC introduction. Elder Huntington was ready and anxious to get on with his mission. After the watching great LDS videos focusing on the family, the meeting was started. Parents were told that leaving your missionary was best done like taking off a bandaid--do it quickly and it is less painful. We were obedient, and he is on his way!