Monday, October 28, 2013
Hello from the Southern Part of the Hemisphere! Argentina is SO COOL! I am falling in love with the culture here with only being here for a few days. The flight and travel was long. i think i didn´t get to Cordoba until Thursday late afternoon. We stopped off in Buenos Aires because we had to talk about some of the Visa stuff that is happening. I only have a 90 day visa for Argentina. But this is a decision made by the church to get all the Visa Waiters into Argentina, and it worked. 42 Visa Waiters came into Argentina in one day. Crazy. The mission opened up 22 new areas just to fit us all into the mission. Any way, i have only 90 days here, but the thing is during those 90 days they are going to try to change my visa status to a kind of residency, they didn´t give us everything, but all i know is that they are working super hard to make sure that we can stay here. So To the Work. I was called to Open up a new area called Rio Segundo 2. Or One half of an area that was already established. The great thing is my Companion Elder Mayne, has been in Rio Segundo for the past 5 months of his Mission. We are getting along so well. He is super cool and pretty much awesome. We get along together so well. The best part is, that we are both From Utah and both about the same times in our mission. We are feeling up to the challenge of opening up this area, and just can´t wait to see what we have in store for us, and we know the Lord has a lot for us. We will with the other Elders who Cover the other half of Rio Segundo. It makes for some super fun down time when you have four elders living together. We have a lot of fun together. Especially since the last couple of days, we hadn´t figured out how to split the area, so we went in a group of four to every visit so both me and the other Visa Waiter that is new, could meet all the investigators because we didn´t know how to split the area. It made for some cool conversations because a lot of people started asking questions of why 4 guys were walking around Rio Segundo in White shirts and ties. Met a lot of cool people that way. Also the thing that i really like about this mission is that most of the areas that you serve in are walking areas. I am in a walking ara right now and it is super cool. I love walking you get to meet so many people. Legs get a little sore at night, but i just love it. I really just hit the pillow and i am out. I Love it here. I truly do feel as if i am finally Home. So another best part about being here is the Food. OHHH man the food here is sooo good. I have had a lot of Empanadas, Carne, and a sandwich called a Lomito. SUPER good. I have been told that some of the best food in the mission can be found here in Rio Segundo. I am super happy. i haven´t had my First Asada yet, but everyone has offered it to us so i am guessing that i will be having one of those soon. I will tell you all about that when that time comes around. Other than that, i don´t know much to say. The Food is Great, The People are great, My companion is Amazing, and i couldn´t be anymore happier to be where i am right now. I love it here and i knew that it might take a while to be where i am at, but i know that i am supposed to be here at this time. Florida was amazing and i loved it, but i also just can´t help but feel as if i am at home. When i flew over Cordoba i almost couldn´t just hlep but feel the spirit to know that someone in this city is looking for the Gospel, and i might be the person to bring it to them. I am sorry that i don´t have any pictures this week. I will be sending them all next week. I love you all and i hope that you all have an amazing week, i know i will! From Elder Cook
Monday, October 21, 2013
So the good ole last week in Florida. Man... i can't believe i am actually going to Argentina. I have been anxiously awaiting this day for a while now. I will be heading out this Wednesday night for a long flight out to Buenos Aires. It will be super cool though. It may be a late night flight but i am just excited because when you sleep it comes faster. The hope is i can sleep. Anyway, This week has been the perfect farewell week that i could have asked for. The best part was Yesterday we had my first Baptism of my mission. YAY. It was a little 9 year old of a returning family to the Church. They had been less active for a couple years and had during that time their son had turned to the age of nine. We prepared them a little bit longer and then everything was ready for their kid, Anthony, to be baptized. It was such a cool experience. As we prepared everything for the Baptism i was just happy to see everything work out. When the baptism was done, i just couldn't' stop smiling for him, his family, and just fort he fact that this family is now back in the together again, knowing that they can be together forever. I love this family and i am super excited to see them one more time before i leave. Another cool thing of this week was we had the biggest activity of the year this last week as well. It is called Noche de Hispanidad. Or Hispanic Night. We had representatives from every country bringing bits and pieces of there culture for a one night showcase and buffet basically. Well Surprise for me was we as missionaries were asked to represent The United States. I was asked to sing the national anthem the day before the activity. That was fun. Haha. After that we were able to watch "Michael Jackson" dance for a bit, then we had the Primary kids dance and also we were able to have the Relief Society do a dance that had every single country that our ward had to offer. We did the math and we basically have every country except for Costa Rica and Paraguay in our Ward. It is SO COOL. The food was just so good too. I am sorry that i didn't get any pictures of that, but is was for a good reason because i was just way to hungry, and by the time i thought about it, all the food was devoured. We had soo many people there to experience this event. Members and Non-Members alike. It was just so cool to see everyone coming together to experience their heritage. Well other than that I am getting into the swing of things. Spanish is coming along and i am hoping for the same feeling when i land in Argentina. I love you all and i hope that this week is filled with Miracles. I love you and i hope for the best. From Elder Cook
Monday, October 14, 2013
AHHH so for those who don't know this will be my final full week in Florida. I am so excited to get down into Argentina but it also is so sad because i will be leaving the great and wonderful Florida that i have grown so close too during the last 6 months. I have learned to love the culture of the people, the wards, starting to get used to the weather, and finally getting in the grove of the work. Hopefully though my time here is the preparation that i needed before getting into Argentina. So Last week was super crazy. We had so much stuff going on. Temple Service, Interviews with President, me getting my Visa, meetings all over the place and finally coming to the end where We are preparing for the next week coming up. We are going to be so busy as well. We prepped this week to be one of the busiest weeks that we could ever have so that we could both end this transfer leaving nothing behind. We have a huge ward activity coming up for this Friday which is supposed to be the biggest ward activity of the year. It is going to be so fun. Lots of food, lots of cultures, and best of all great opportunities for Members to bring friends and introduce them to the Church. We are hoping for a super good turn out on both sides of the board, or at least that is what the members have told us. Anyway i want to share something that i really liked about this week. It has been super cool because with all of our investigators we have re-pushed listening to conference again, and even have had the opportunity to sit down with a few of them and watch a few of the talks. the one very popular one that we have found to help most of them was the Talk given by Uchtdorf given on Saturday. I absolutely love this talk. I know as a missionary i am not really doubting what i am sharing, but i have found so much inspiration on how i can help those i am teaching resolve those little doubts that they have. Everyone has doubts and they may bot be about the church, or they may just be a doubt on their self worth, Just remember having a true testimony of Christ and what he has done for us will conquer any doubts that we have than any other thing. I invite everyone to watch it. http://www.lds.org/general-conference/2013/10/come-join-with-us?lang=eng I love you all and i hope that everyone has an awesome and miracle filled week. I will send one more email for Florida next week then i am off to the wonderful land of Argentina. Just remember everyone DON"T SEND MAIL. From Elder Cook
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
I just got out of my interview with President Berry and i just received some great news. I am leaving for Argentina on the 23rd of this month. I was told to write this email to send a notice to everyone saying Don't Send ANY Mail to Me at the Florida Orlando address. I love you all and i will talk to all on Monday.
Monday, October 7, 2013
Ahhh such a good ending to the week. Conference has always been that charge that you need to just feel energized for missionary work. I took some advice from my companion and had entered into Conference this time around more prepared than i think i have ever been before. Spiritually, mentally, and physically. It was just a really cool experience for me. One of my favorite quotes from conference was from Uchtdorf. "Doubt your doubts before you doubt your faith" I know that in this moment i really don't need it because i am on a mission and my testimony has never been stronger, but i know that as i teach i can use that to better help my investigators know that our faith, if established, can face all challenges. Doubt the doubts before you doubt your faith.
Well we had a really cool experience this last week. We were going out this last friday to chilis because we were going out to celebrate in a way for the week that we had. As we had entered we were sat down by a guy who said to us "Come on elders follow me" We were quite surprised that he knew us by Elder. Well we were sat down and he told us that he had been raised in the Church in Idaho, moved down to Florida when he was fifteen and had since then become less active. His wife is a non-member and has her own church. He is the General Manager as well at the Chilis and usually works sundays so he himself can't make it to Church often. Well after that point lets just say it was such a cool experience. We were treated so well. The GM, Matt, made sure that we were taken care of. It was just a cool experience. The thing is that you never know where the Lord will put you when he needs you. Especially as missionaries i have seen that the Lord puts me in places a lot just to affect a person once in their lives. To give them that help they need at that moment. I know that Matt may not be full reactivated because he saw us a Chilis, but what he may have needed was to see that he still had a care for the Church, just to see the representatives of Jesus Christ. Just a cool little experience.
Other than that, I finally got some news on the Visa this week. We got a call this last wednesday from the Office missionaries and they told me that they had received some paper work for me to do. It was a renewal for the FBI clearance and another visa paper. I am not forgotten. I had to get my Fingerprints redone and then sign some more paper work. I am hoping that this means i will be moving out soon and it means that they haven't forgotten about me here in Florida. I know I still have some time to wait here, but i know that the Lord is putting me here more than just to wait. He is having me work my heart out to get me ready for whatever is ahead.
I love you all and i hope to you all enjoyed Conference as much as i did. Just remember that we need to do more than just listen, but to get the must out of what we listened is going home and applying them in our daily lives. I love you all and i hope that you all have a wonderful miracle filled week.
From Elder Cook