Monday, August 26, 2013

Hola de Semana de Cambios!

We had an up and down week this week, as one day we worked super hard, the next E´ Whitton got sick, the next we had Elder Quenton L Cook speak to us, and the next day E´ Whitton was sick again, and then we worked super just seemed like a crazy week. I´ve got to admit, after this past week my brain feels a little fried! 

  On August 21, 2013 we had a visit from Quentin L. Cook.  He came and spoke with our missionaries and left us with a beautiful blessing.  When an authority comes to Lima for a visit, the members work for weeks getting the chapels ready,  painting the building, cleaning, working on the grounds, planning everything to be just perfect.  The day of the meeting they put beautiful flower arrangements everywhere.  When everything is ready, a quiet excitement builds until the visiting authority finally arrives.  We took this group picture.  We couldn't get everyone in one picture so this group is sitting on the left side and...
...this is the other half of the group.  President and Sister Borg, Elder Cook and his wife,  Elder C. Scott Grow and his wife and most important of all OUR MISSIONARIES!
We dropped the date for Edith yesterday when she didn´t come to church for the 3rd week in a row. She´s been wanting to be baptized for almost 3 months now, but just can´t seem to overcome her trials to put the Lord first, and take a step of faith. We´re really working with her, but it´s hard to keep her thinking about the gospel when we aren´t there.

We´ve got Franchesca and Farid with dates as well, but they are in Equador this week, so they couldn´t come to church. We´re going to be keeping in touch by phone up until they get back. We are striving to be ready for baptism this saturday!

Elder Whitton is progressing a whole bunch, and learning spanish like crazy! I know he´s going to learn to speak really well. E´Whitton also taught me an awesome way to do daily planning! By following the same steps as weekly planning! It makes it so much easier to prioritize and make sure that we are spending our time with the right people, or in other words, teaching people, not lessons.

I´m super excited to train! I hope that I know enough to have the level of intelligence to take these big concepts of being a great missionary and boiling them down until a child, or a new elder in this case, can understand. 

So the big news for today is that I finished the Book of Mormon in Spanish! At 9:00:35 this morning. So awesome. I have had such a spiritual flood of experiences over this past ¨Book of Mormon Transfer¨ and I know it has and will make a huge difference in my mission from now on.
So I know absolutely nothing about what you are doing in Caja Marca, except that there are kids involved. Can you please fill me in? haha, I feel like I always ask, but I never find out anything. Just pictures or something would be great! Sierra´s blog is the coolest thing on the planet.
Ok, I´ve got to go! I love you all! Thank you for your support!
Elder Hicken

Monday, August 19, 2013

Hola de un semana loca!

Shoot this week was crazy. I have spent very little time being a missionary to be honest. My companion went home on Saturday. Not a worthiness thing, and not a health thing. My new companion is named Elder Whitton and he is from MurrietaCA. He just got his visa last week, but he was serving in New Jersey for the past 5 months. He´ll be my companion for the next two weeks up until transfer day.

 Elder Whitton and me

Elder Whitton is doing pretty well so far! He says it is a lot to take in, but he is doing great with the language! It´s good that we have E´Eklof in our apartment to loosen up the stress of a new country a little. I am trying to take advantage of the time he has with an English speaking companion before the next transfer.

Right now we are working with Edith to make sure she is ready for her baptism this Thursday. She says she wants to talk about a few doubts about the Book of Mormon. We have a lesson planned for tonight. 

We are now working with a brother and sister of 15 and 9 years respectively, and hope to talk to their mother sometime this week to make sure she is okay with them being baptized. We were going to invite them to prepare to be baptized on the 31 yesterday (as they both asked us what they can do to be baptized), but their aunt and cousin came in town and the appointment fell through. 

Well, everything seems to be progressing! I am trying to apply all of the things E´ Gaete taught me right before he left (it´s hard to be the both of us) because he covered my weaknesses as a missionary. Now I´ve got to improve. 

I´m starting to reallize how unprepared I would be for my life after my mission if I hadn´t gone on my mission. It´s incredible how much I didn´t know I didn´t know. I´m learning so much, but only when I remember to learn. It´s harder than it sounds to remember to learn when you´re almost always the one teaching!

I got special permision from the president to use! So I´m uploading everything online so I can´t lose it.  Here are some pics from this week:

Elder Eklof and I eating the Manjar Blanco (dulce de leche) that Elder Gaete left behind.
mi papá latino E´Hernandez. He dies this transfer!

Me serving Kenji. He is a professional chef that I am going to fly back to the states to start a 6 star restauraunt.

El directorio. My never ending project for this ward.

the difference between a estadosunidencia [United States-ian] y peruana [Peruvian] agenda

I´m progressing in my reading!

Elder Hicken

Hurrah for Israel!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Hola del cumplequarto

Todo está bien aquí en San Silvestre! [All is well in San Silvestre]

Is it crazy or what that I´ve already been out six months! It just zoomed right past me.

We had a wonderful training meeting this morning with E´ Eklof which helped me think about how important it is to focus on the people who have the ability to progress, and help them progress with a date as a goal to be baptized. I haven´t been as dilligent as I should be with keeping track of our progression towards reaching our Zone, monthly, weekly, and even sometimes daily goals as I could be, but that´s about to change!

We´re planning on baptizing Edith this month! If we pray hard enough, we can baptize a 15 year old we contacted two weeks ago named Franchesca! The work may be slow, but it is progressing, as are we!
Shoot, we just found out we have to leave! If I¨m lucky I´ll get to write a little bit more this afternoon!

Con mucho amor, Elder Hicken

Hurrah for Israel!

Here are some fotos -- I'll explain later

Monday, August 5, 2013

Hola de su casi-paisano!

[Casi-paisano in the subject means “almost countryman” since we are leaving for Peru tomorrow morning.  We will not see him while we are in the country, of course, but there is something nice about knowing we will be in the same country as Talon again.]

Todo está bien aquí en San Silvestre!  [All is well here in San Silvestre]

We had a wonderful week in regards to logros [achievements], even though almost all of our citas [appointments] fell through Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday. We even found 3 new families to teach! We´re struggling with teaching those who come to church, and helping those we teach attend! It's an interesting situation, but we are seeing progress. We always seem to have a breakthrough each week in something as Elders: a lesson we learn, a trial we overcome -- something.

We are working as hard as we can to get visiting teachers and home teaching going in our ward, but it seems like a very slow process working with people who don´t work for the Church full time like we do.

Tomorrow we´ve got a meeting with the President in the morning, but I think everyone should be back in the office when you stop by!

I know it´s going to be a crazy week, so I´ll keep it short and sweet, with a couple things to read for family scripture study!

Please send me ideas for scriptures to share with members and non members to celebrate their birthdays! I´m searching of ideas, but I don´t have a lot of time to look!

Also, when you get the chance, could you send me an mp3 and lyrics for the national anthem [click here for the lyrics in English and Spanish, click here to hear the anthem? Not urgent. (p.s. what is the cornocopia on the flag for?)

[according to wiki.answers, the cornucopia symbolizes prosperity]

Here´s some pictures!

Pizza Raul´s with E´ Gaete, E´ Claros, and E´ Eklof! 
Yes, we ordered 9 I did not drink the Coke.

Daniel Ricse Aguilar and his family work with wood, 
and we sanded doorframes for 2 hours.

Sergio Llosa Fae is the son of our pensionista, and he cockfights. 
Check out my rooster.

Roberto Fernandez is the bomb. 
He used to go out with us almost every other day, 
but now that he works 8 hours a day, we just go out on Sunday. 
One of the coolest future elders ever.

Con Amor,

Elder Hicken

Hurrah for Israel!