Monday, October 28, 2013


Hola Familia!

Well I guess Christmas comes early in Jaen!! haha.  I already got 2 of my 3 christmas packages Mom. I had to hide them under my bed cuz it was tempting and agonizing, but I'm super excited to open them in 2 months haha. Let's hope I won't have to bring them on a transfer. Well we got news this week that Elder Nielson of the 12! is coming to Chiclayo!! I don't know if it's a good thing cuz it probably means our mission is wicked but I'm stoked to hear an apostle of the Lord again. He'll be coming in about 3 weeks so it will probably be a 2 day journey for the Jaen Missionaries, but I'm stoked cuz I'll be able to see my old district and I'm guessing Elder Jarman as well! That will be fun.

Well this week was another steller and fast week, lots of ups and downs, but don't worry mostly ups ;) So this week I got to teach about temples for the first time! It was the best. One time was to a family that just recently became active and one time to Nino. But honestly, it was an amzing expereince for me cuz I was blessed with the opportunity to work in the temple before the mish and because of that, my testimony and love for the temple is huge. This recently activated family is not married or sealed, but we were able to testify and teach about eternal families and the blessings that come from temple work, and with Nino it was sweet too , cuz his mother died when he was younger and we were able to tell him that he can do the work for his mother.  That his mother will have the opportunity to hear and accept the gosple and he can live with her para siempre. But at the same time it's hard cuz the nearest temple is Lima, and people here don't have the money to travel to Lima, so it takes a lot of faith. So I feel so blessed to live 15 minutes away from a temple, it's unreal. Members at home  have the opportunity to participate in the salvation of others across Cali multiple times a week!

Well this week was the Baptism of Franco. This was the kid who is already pumped to sereve a mission. It was also a great expereince. I had the opportunity to baptize him, which made me nervous cuz latinos have 10 names and I probably have the most gringo accent any Peruvian has laid their ears on. But everything went perfect. The spirit was strong and on Saturday he was able to receive the gift of the holy ghost. Unfortunately, his sisters, who want to be baptized, couldn't attend cuz one is in the hospital with Dengae. ( I guess that is super common to get here, especially with missionaries). So I'll probably be chillin with Andy Irons soon.

Saturday night we had a show de talentos and believe it or not, I was a star of a play that I basically wrote haha. jk.  We  did a sketch about Noah and as the noob in the district, I was selected to be Noah, and I rocked.  I had a beard and all the crowd went wild. I've got a vid of it but I don't know if I can send it.

So our investigator Arelia, who is suppsosed to be baptized next week, wants more time. We visited her last night and she said that she doesn't feel ready cuz she doesn't know much and wants to learn more. We testified of how the only requirements needed for baptism are faith in Jesus Christ and repentance, so were are gonna work with her this week and maybe we will have a baptism. But she's 40 years old and already is more active than the average member. She comes to all of the meetings and activites and she has a strong testimony of the gospel. She lives in a one room adobie house with her handicapped daughter. She is awesome and humble. She just  needs to have the confidence in herself and the Lord.

So this week I've been learning personally about enduring to the end, and with joy every step of the way too. In the past I have felt that I have given up too soon on certain things, like lacrosse, running, piano, work and lots of other stuff. I feel that's definelty one of my many weaknesses. (note from Mom:  Baylor has always been so hard on himself)  There have been  multiple times when I have told my companion that I wanna serve an English speaking mission in the states, but I've been strengthened this week as I've focused on God's hand in my life. I think of the hardships as trials God has given me to make me stronger. And as I do this, I'm filled with such joy and happiness. Positive thoughts and gratitude all day every day is where it is at ladies and gents. Weeel I gots to go. Peace out.

Jawas from Jaen
Elder Harper

Monday, October 21, 2013



How goes it? Well thanks for the Halloween letter, hahah I enjoyed the picture and all the stickers and notes. Oh and don't forget the sponge one tatoo, definitely gonna rep that while hitting the streets of Peru. Well I'm glad you guys had a great week and pops had a great bday. Sounds like you guys had fun, and Iz keeps wreckin it at cross country, what a stud. Well this week was pretty great and pretty fast. Monday we had a zone meeting with president Risso. Everyone had interviews, and this time mine was in Spanish. He just asked me how everything was going and how our area was. My comp played a nasty trick on me. After his interview he said that he was being transfered and that I would receive my new comp that night haha. I believed him for almost a day but I pried the truth out of him haha. So no changes with us but we are getting a new ZL and a couple others in my district are leaving.

Well it was just a normal week of teaching and such but on Thursday we did innercambios and I spent the whole day with one of the ZLs. I was stressed out at first cuz I was gonna have to lead all day showing him to all our citas and stuff and knowing my horrible sense of direction, you can probably imagine. But everything turned out well I was able to find every house ok and teach that message. It was cool being with another Elder and seeing his way of teaching and doing things, and the advice he gave. He's trying to learn English so I would talk to him in Spanish and he would talk to me in English. But he's a super good missionary and made me go out of my comfort zone. In lessons sometimes I don't get the opportunity to speak much but this Elder  just kept turning to me and every time I was surprised what came out of my mouth. One lesson he made me commit two people to be baptized and it was our first time teaching these people. They didn't say yes right away but the spirit was super strong and we promised them that they would be ready and in the closing prayer they prayed to be ready to be baptized so that was pretty sweet!!

The baptism of Diana was Saturday!!! It was again an amazing experience. She is the most ready person to accept the Gospel I've seen in Peru! It was only 2 weeks from the day we contacted her to the day we baptized her and yet she knows so much! She is like halfway through the Book of Mormon and has such a strong testimony. After she was baptized she bore a powerful testimony. She talked about how at first she wasn't too sure if our message was true and didn't know for sure. But when she sincerely prayed about it, she received a strong witness of the holy ghost and overwhelming peace and joy telling her it was true!! OH it was sooo sweet. 

Sunday our investigator Franco, who is getting baptized this next Saturday did not show. So we left after sacrament meeting, hunted him down and brought him to the next sacrament meeting. His sisters still haven't attended so they cant be baptized til later. But it's awesome how there are so many people here ready to accept the gospel and follow the commandments of God. My testimony has grown so much on the power of this gospel has to change lives and what true faith can do! I was reading about the sons of Helaman this week and how they had such strong faith because they kept the commandments of God and trusted that God would deliver them. This helped me cuz I constantly doubt my abilities, but I've come to learn that I don't have to doubt in my abilities cuz it's through faith and trust in God that I'll be able to teach and to speak and not through my own abilities.

Well this week has been really great. I've felt so much happier as I've been striving to think about my investigators and not home or my own weaknesses. I know this church is true with all my heart and that the spirit and true faith has the power to change lives.  I love this work and I can't wait til I'm the missionary God is making me to be!!! Well til next week, thanks for the letters and support keep it coming..

Elder Harper

Monday, October 14, 2013


Hola Familia!!

Well the weeks sure do go by super fast; it's scary. Sorry Mom for not sending pics last week. We
aren't supposed to bring cameras with us proselyting cuz it could get stolen but I'll try harder to take and send more pics for you. And I've got some this week from the baptism. Well sounds like you guys had  a fun week! Filled with races, dances, movies, decorating, and food. I'm jealous but this life is better anyways. And thanks for that article Mom! It was very uplifting, and all the letters you guys write always pump me up and make me feel better. Happy Birthday Pops!!! You're gonna be the big 50 tomorow! THAT'S SCARY, you are sooooo.....young. I cant believe it;) Well you better have a birthday paddle out for me and eat lots of pie and Alber Tacos. 

Anyways the work here has really taken off  this past week! We have been teaching many people with lots of potential. Sunday we had 10 investigators at Church who stayed through all the classes too. 2 of the investigators have baptismal dates for this month and 2 more I think will be baptized. We are teaching this 15 year old girl named Diana. She was a reference we contacted a week ago and we've only taught here a few times but she is progressing super fast and has a strong testimony. She wants to be baptized this week. Her date is for this upcoming Saturday, but last time we visited her she was crying cuz her mom wants her to wait longer to get to know the Church. But Diana has a strong desire to follow Christ and to become clean, starting a new life in the gospel as soon as she can. She's been reading the Book of Mormon, the pamphlets and shows up to church by herself haha. Well the last time she talked to her mom she said her mom said ¨Do what you want. Don't bother me." haha   So I think she'll be baptized soon. We just have to soften her mother's heart. 

Another one is Franco and his sister Janala. Franco will be baptized at the end of this month and his sister at the beginning of the next. Franco is 16 and is super receptive. His family is the best too. His mom is super interested as well but she's not married to her spouse so that will be tough cuz people here don't have a desire to get married cuz of the money and the commitment. But Franco is already talking about preparing for a mish and his mom is stoked on it too and he's not even baptized!! These people are very humble and have a strong will to follow Jesus Christ and change their lives. 

This Saturday was the baptism of Nino Davis Sanchez Sanchez. It was an awesome experience. I had the opportunity to baptize him.
I was nervous cuz I didn't want to ruin his experience with my awful Spanish, but everything was perfect and the spirit was sooo strong. He bore his testimony after and on Sunday he received the gift of the Holy Ghost and received the Aaronic Priesthood. The kid is a stud and is gonna go far in the church. These youngsters we are teaching are great examples to me of stalwart youth and makes me wish I was better before. 

Well everyday we have been going from lesson to lesson. We never knock doors and the members are starting to help a lot. It's been a real blessing. My Spanish is still the same but I can't complain cuz I know I could be studying harder and trying harder. Well I'm sorry I don't have any awesome experiences Dad, it's hard sometimes to notice the little moments through lessons and in the day cuz I still don't understand much. But what helps me is remembering what Bishop Greiner said once, "We are always successful when we have the spirit with us". So I need to try harder and harder every day to have that , cuz that's the only way I can understand and communicate. Well thanks so much for all the support; you guys are the best. I used to get super homesick on pdays from letters and stuff but now it just makes me happy and comforted.
Until next week!    Elder Harper

Baylor watching General Conference last weekend

Monday, October 7, 2013


Hola Familia! 

Well it's been another week in Jaen. Not much happened this week, just teaching investigators and walking up hill all day everyday. Still no baptisms, but the highlight of every week is when we teach our investigator Nino Sanchez! He's going to be baptized this Saturday and he is sooo ready. I just love teaching him cuz the spirit is always there and I'm calm and confident with him cuz we know him very well. So it seems like every week our pool of investigators changes. People I thought were golden drop and new ones randomly show up haha. 

This week we did intercombios. It's basically where you just spend a whole day and overnight with another elder. Elder sleepover. It was cool getting to know a new area and having the opportunity to teach with another elder. But the highlight of the week for suurezies was General Conference. Yes, I got to watch it in English. Half our zone is gringo, haha.... so we had a little room with an hd flat screen to watch conference on with all the gringos. Conference was so uplifiting and inspiring! They talked a lot about missionary work and repentance, which was perfect for me cuz I'm an imperfect missionary. The spirit was soo strong and it was devastating when the last session ended haha.

Well it sounds like all you guys are having a blast. Matt Nathonson and Joshua Radin? and I basically cried when I found out everyone went to jealous haha. But it seems like all is well at home which makes me a happy elder. Let me know when you guys find out where Damon ends up. I'm guessing he goes into the field in 2 weeks and I probs won't see him for 5 months cuz I heard once your in Jaen, you stay there for a while. So I'll be able to speak Spanish when I serve in Chiclayo for the first time!! 

So conference was really an answer to my prayers, uplifting and filled me with more confidence. Right after the last session, we went to teach an investigator and I prayed hard to have the spirit with me and to follow the spirit  before and during the lesson. I don't know how, but I was able to understand a lot and I felt as I was speaking, that I was being guided by the spirit and I was able to express the things in my heart. It was a legit feeling and after my comp said that he was surprised and witnessed the gift of tongues haha. 

My comp is awesome. We get a long great, but he's going home soon sadly. He's an awesome trainer and I'm sure he will have me ready to be with a different companion who might not be as awesome. This week I read an article about missionaries and it said that there are plenty of good missionaries in the world, many great ones but there needs to be more consecrated missionaries. A missionary who sacrifices everything and gives the Lord 100%. I'm way far from that right now, but my goal is to become a consecrated missionary! I want to be the best I can be. It's gonna take a lot of hard work, but I'm up for the challenge. 

Well it's still super hot here, even when it rains, which it does twice a week. The food is good but I hate eating cuz they feed us so much. It's aweful haha. Every meal is a mountain full of rice with chicken. We have someone too cook every meal and someone else to do laundry. Oh, and we basically live in a hotel so our room is pretty nice.  Well that's all I got for now.

Elder Harper
Sorry no pics this week; we did nothing cool.