Wednesday, February 25, 2015

25 Feb 2015 Letter

OK I can buy most clothes here. The awesome Peruvian ties are only 5 american dollars so I have 4 now. And I have 2 legit Peru and Messi jerseys. Only like 7 dollars for each. I got my camera back today but I don't have a ton of pictures like last week.

Week 4

Hello everybody!! Well I heard about the Superbowl. Wasn't expecting the Pats to win at all. Elder Wilson, who is from Seattle, wouldn't talk for about 24 hours after he found out. I did get my camera back so the pictures can come in now. Well I ended up deciding with Elder Wilson to stay in our NorteAmericano district. And there were lots of reasons why we decided to stay along with all the other reasons it would have been great to leave. But we are staying in district 112. Because of our decision the teachers still wanted us to be challenged more so now we are a companionship only when we teach. SO about 4 hours out of the day we are companions. The teachers never speak to us in English and speak super fast Spanish. So they are obviously trying to make it hard for us but I feel like my Spanish has improved this past week more than it had the first 3 weeks. I'm learning grammar that I never even knew even in English.

So Thursday was super normal but Friday was a special day. Don't get your hopes up though. Elder Wilson and I came up with an idea for an office chair that could be used as a workout chair. We call it the Wilchair. SO hopefully I'm not giving my idea away. Anyway we also came up with an idea for a pringles company but without the chips. So all the same flavors: salt and vinegar, barbecue, chips and salsa, sour cream and onion, and more but nuts!! And also some of our Hermanas promised to invest.

OK crazy little story. One of the hermanas from one of the new districts that came in a couple of weeks ago is from Star, ID. She went to Eagle high and all. I got some pictures of her sweethearts dance and one of the dudes in the picture is this hermana's family's foreign exchange student. Her family emailed her the same picture of all the kids all dressed up that i received. Its a small Mormon world.

Saturday night we watched a couple of videos. the first one is a talk by Elder Rasband. Its a talk about how missionaries receive their calls. One of the apostles sits in a room with 2 big screens with the missionary's face and his info and all. The apostle then addresses the missionary as if he were talking directly to them. After a few minutes he receives the answer to where they should go. It was such a neat thing to hear. It makes me wonder which apostle chose my mission. For some reason I feel like it was either Ballard or Bednar.

Elder Wilson and I taught our first lesson on Monday and another one again on Tuesday. I feel like I can worry less about the language since we can both get along well enough and we can focus more on teaching. Its nice to feel the spirit in a lesson because we can all understand each other and actually engage in meaningful conversation. I do miss teaching with Elder Manzanera though 'cause we were getting pretty good together. His Spanish is getting so good too. He came in barely knowing Hola. Anyway till next time.

Elder Wilcox!

How our messy room usually looks.

How my top bunk looks. I use the top
of the dresser for my nightstand.

Never studied as much stuff with anyone before
this guy  - Elder Manzanera (companion) 

Front view of the Lima Perú Temple

This is the back of one of my tags. Zach might like it haha.
I miss him a ton. He was all I could think about today
in the celestial room and I was crying like a baby.


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

18 Feb 2015 Letter

P-days are the greatest! Temple trips are my favorite thing for sure. The supermercado trips are also super fun. Anyway I'm going to start bringing my journal with me so I can remember stuff while I'm writing. So last Thursday we took a trip to Interpol to get our IDs started. It took around 6 hours. This place was seriously like the DMV but ten times worse and there are no chairs. So we all stood around in suits sweating our heads off, making church raps as we stood around. Elder Thorpe is our beatboxer and Elder Manzanera, Elder Wilson, and I spit the verses. Pretty fun stuff. Here´s one:

Don't worry about what we white boys lack,
Cuz what we lack we make up for, we on the right track,
But we ain´t here to tract, we just here to contact,
Predicad Mi Evangelio, but that's just a fact...

Anyway that's really not what our best work involves. Elder Manzanera and I are teaching like crazy. We teach about 4 lessons every 3 days if that makes any sense. We have two new investigators for our mock lessons. Julietta and Juan. Our Spanish is getting a lot better but we still have a lot of work to do. We are doing much better in our teaching, as far as the back and forth stuff goes. We just need work on our attitude. I guess you could say we lack conviction, but these are fake people so its a bit hard. Anyway we have had a ton of lessons on one very difficult subject in particular. Obedience. But not just doing what we are supposed to be doing, its being exactly obedient. Waking up at 6:30 exactly, shaving every day even if its only stubble or peach fuzz, showing up to class 10 minutes early, wearing your suit in the chapel and outside the CCM always, and tons more. It's really a tough thing but they say the blessings will be poured out to us if we are exactly obedient. Brother Hansen, one of the Branch Presidency members, taught a great lesson on this and he said, ''If you are almost always obedient, you will almost receive the blessings." I know I need to work on that and I know that waking up at 6:30 exactly is almost the hardest thing in the world to do, at least for me. but I know it's part of being a missionary.

Elder Wilson and I were given the opportunity to move up with the Latinos for the last two weeks seeing that we are progressing fairly well in the language. That would mean all day every day in Spanish. We would leave our districts and go sleep in their rooms, we would have classes with them, eat with them, have p-day with them, and all the other good stuff. But they have given us a few days to think about it. I'm still not sure what to do. I've been praying about it but I'm still not formulating a for-sure answer so well see in the next couple of days. I'm conflicted because I love my district and I'm still nowhere close to knowing Spanish well enough. I can barely teach a full 30 minute lesson in Spanish. I would not be learning anymore Spanish (at least not through grammar lessons and practice -- only through being fully immersed) and I would only be learning doctrine in a language I don't know but I know I'd learn a ton. We shall see.

That same night I had the opportunity to give a blessing to a Sister and felt almost unqualified. I knew I was worthy but it was just a testimony to me of their unwavering faith in the power of the priesthood, even the power of a 18 year old kid's priesthood. Anyway I gave the blessing with my companion and it turned out to be a blessing to me as well as the recipient. My testimony of the priesthood was magnified tenfold and I felt surprisingly happy and peaceful. I felt honored they asked me and was glad I was worthy. I can't imagine how horrible it would feel to tell someone I couldn't help them. I am so grateful to be a missionary and a priesthood holder.

'Til next Miercoles,

Elder Wilcox

My district in front of the temple:
Top row from left - Elder Thorpe (Denver), Elder Jesson (Las Vegas), Elder Wilson (Seattle), Elder Wendell (Denver), Yours truly, Elder Manzanera (San Antonio)
Bottom row from left - Hermana Beatty (St George), Hermana Vernon (Cedar City), Hermana Cox (Logan), Hermana Alder (Utah?), Hermana Samuels (Tallahassee)

 Elder Wilson, Elder Manzanera, y Yo

Zach might apreciate this

A real live Peruvian soccer goal!!! (Those aren't my clothes. Mine are
stuck in the washing machine in a puddle of water that won't drain!)

The District 

 Me and Elder Wilson

Ping Pong!!!


View from a CCM window.
(These are all on my companion's camera cuz mine got taken away.
Apparently it's a fine-print rule here that I can't take pictures inside, only
outside the buildings. So I won't get it back til I leave the CCM. Kinda
ridiculous if you ask me.  But I shoulda read the fine print I guess)

The bus we take every p-day

This is Elder Turin. He's my favorite Latino so far. Such a sweet, nice guy.
He's going to be a great missionary. He loves us and loves speaking in English.

The District with Elder Turin


Wednesday, February 11, 2015

11 Feb 2015 Letter

Hello from way down south to everybody!!

Life here is pretty much the best :) This week has gone by waaaay faster than the first. There are 3 groups of gringos each with about 20 kids. The principios, intermedios, and avanzados. I am now an intermedio and we got a new group of Americans today so I'm excited to get to know them. I feel at home finally. I'm used to sleeping on the top bunk even if I may not like it! Spanish is such a fun language and the people here are such good people. They're all very nice and love to talk to us as we walk down the street. Every Wednesday after the temple a group of us go to the grocery store and get snacks and Inca Kola. There is also a Mormon store across the street from the temple we like to go to. They sell amazing Peruvian knit ties that are only 15 soles!! (5 bucks). Most things here are pretty cheap. The secretary here at the CCM is so nice! I also happen to know her! Her name is Hermana Valenzuela and she is my friend's sister! David is a great friend from California who moved from Peru a few years ago but his older sister stayed here! She is awesome. She always wants to talk with me and help me with anything. She got me a couple of gifts I couldn't be more grateful for. Chapstik and a scriptures case. The best!

The food here is always the same
Breakfast: eggs and rolls
Lunch: Meat, rice, potatoes, rolls
Dinner: Meat, rice, potatoes, rolls
I really enjoy the food actually. The best part is actually the drinks they offer. All they give us is juice. Maracuya, mango, piña, melon, and limonada are some of my favorites :)

I love all the people here. I've gotten to know the CCM president and the teachers and doctors fairly well. I love them all even though sometimes they may seem a bit strict. I know they are preparing me to be the missionary I should be though. They are all so loving and want to help us. I especially love all the missionaries though. My district has become my group of best friends. I love all my elders and the sisters are amazing. They seem so ready to serve. I guess the sisters are just very different from us elders. They are so loving and tell everyone that they love them and they love to serve and are sweet and they love EVERYTHING. I'm glad to serve and learn from them cuz us elders are very to the point and state doctrine. Anyway I know we were all put in a district to learn from each other. I love spending time with all the elders. They are the coolest guys ever.

In church on Sunday we had a lesson where our branch president said we are so blessed to teach heavenly fathers children. I realized how sacred and important my calling is. I know that I am preparing to teach a city of 12 million people. I've got lots of work to do and I'm excited to get out there. MY calling is sacred and I know I am called of God. I want to serve Him and I will not let him down. I know this church is true. I know my purpose for the next two years. Well, 102 weeks. Not that I'm counting.

Elder Wilcox
Elder Wilson (closest to me) and Elder Manzanera (my companion)

This is Elder Turin below, a native of Peru headed to a different mission in Peru.
We are best buds. He left to the field yesterday.


Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Letter Numero Uno

Wesley's first real letter:

I am doing awesome!!! I miss all you guys too. Especially Zach. So lets get started. The language is awesome. I flew in with two districts of norteamericanos. My district has 6 elders (including yo) and 5 hermanas. all but 2 sisters are going to lima este!!! Excuse my spanglish cuz thats all i speak in now. One other elder who lived in brazil for 4 years are doing really well with the language. Im doing really well i think...But i talk with the latinos all the time and sit next to them for meals and its the best. The funny thing is they all want to learn and speak english with us while we want to speak spanish to them. the conversation ends up just being super hilarious. All the food is peruvian. they drown us in rice and meat and bread. but mostly rice. my p-days are wednesday. i get to write in the early afternoon. i ignore grammar cuz spanish keyboards are insane. i went to the lima temple for the first time this morning. my session was obviously in spanish but they gave us headphones. i tried not to use them as much as i could but its a bit tough. i miss a couple words but its not worth it to miss words during a session so ill keep them on for now till i learn sufficient spanish. the temple is weekly yes, every wednesday morning. YES the stowaway wasabi almonds were fantastic. thanks! what else... my district is awesome. we are already best buds. I'll add some pics so u can meet them. I dont have many tho. Also another huge problem i have is crazy, crazy chapped lips. my face is in pain. its starting to go away tho. i can barely smile. so if i dont look happy in the pics its not true!! im the happiest ive ever been in my life. i also tore a ligament in my thumb playing basketball so im only playing soccer now. futbol is crazy here. the basketball court is awful. note the singular court. the rim and backborad must have been made of bouncy rubber cuz its so unforgiving. layups all day. the soccer field is a different story. its all turf, nearly full size, and is surrounded by massive golf course net things. the peruvian priorities are clearly evident here. i havent been sick yet!! so im still alive, yes. here its just classes all day inbetween meals. we get an hour of play time/recess/physical activity time. The traffic here is insane. Everyone drives like its normal but 4 cars drive next to eachother in 3 lanes. thye come within inches of eachother like its nothing. A couple little stories. On my flight down to salt lake brother Care (high council member serving in Eagle 3rd ward) showed up at the gate saying he was on our flight. He said he was glad because he then knew it would be a safe flight. I thought about that for a while and realized how cool it was. 3 of the Lords servants would be on a trip and for some reason people felt safe. Heavenly Father didnt want to let a flight be unsafe cuz he knew there were 3 boys about his work. I felt honored to be a part of that. A few days later we watched a small video from youtube. President eyering and elder holland spoke concerning missionary work. Elder Holland spoke to mission presidents around the world, telling them that missionaries would ask, why is this so hard, why am i not having any success? (I cant find the quotation marks on the darn keyboard) Elder Holland responded, Because missionary work was never easy, because salvation was never easy. The Savior's life and suffering and Atonement were never easy. We can not ask that. Even the Son of God, a half immortal man asked if there was any other way. Its not going to be easy. It hit me that Im a missionary now and i need to work my tail off and it might be tough, yes. but it will definitely be worth it. Elder holland said, when we have the door slammed in our face, when people yell at us, when we are cussed at, or hit, or spit upon, we are standing shoulder to shoulder with the Redeemer of the world. I lost it after that. I am so grateful to Him for what He has done for me. I am so happy to be here. Im ready to serve to people of Peru with all my heart, might, mind, and strength. I know this is the true gospel on the earth. Elder Oaks said that almost every church claims to be the true church. but ours is the only true church in which the Lord is well pleased. Nos Vemos. I love you all.
Elder Wilcox

Pic 1. The CCM!

Pic 2. The Gang. we 3 kings get alond so well. Middle is Elder Manzanera: my companion (awesome guy from san antonio) and elder on left is Elder Wilson (BFF) haha. dont worry his companion is nearby... somewhere. this pic is just out front of the temple

I can only send 2 pics from down here in peru or it wont send. out of time. sorry if i didnt get to writing to u. Im doing my best!!!