Monday, December 1, 2014

I am the new District Leader For Kirtland! I thought "Are you sure you called the right person?"

*so I've been horrible at keeping Josh's  blog up to date. Here's the last 3 weeks

  Greetings from Kirtland New Mexico! This week has been our best yet! We are finding more and more people to teach and we have been able to get into the groove of things. The ward members have been very helpful in giving us places we could go and teaching us how to work with a big ward. Since this is the first area where I have had the privilege of working with a whole ward council it is different, but very easy to involve the whole ward in missionary work so it is nice. We were part of the ward council meeting yesterday and we expressed that us missionaries are here to work and do whatever they would have us do and I feel that set us off on the right foot. Bishop Wethington has directed us to work with the young men and to encourage them to go on missions so we will be talking to them this Wednesday about missionary work for their mutual activity. The Members are still very enthusiastic about feeding us so we have yet gone a day without being fed dinner! Also, this past week we gave out three Book of Mormons and now have a very solid investigator! This new investigator knows a sister in the ward and so we will be involving the member as we teach this new investigator. It will be great! Elder Cartwright and I have been focusing a lot on reactivation in the ward and have made it a priority to visit every family that is not active and figure out their needs. From there we are going to report it to our ward mission leader and he will tell bishop and the less active members home teacher. Very efficient and an inspired way of working in the church and I am grateful to have such a great ward! We also were able to finally sit down and teach a sister in our ward who has not been to church in over 10 years. She has two sons and two daughters that are not members and she has expressed that she would like her kids to be baptized. We are hoping this will be this sisters way back to the Church so we will cross our fingers. There are two really great converts in our ward that were baptized in the summer and one of them, Jenny, just finished her new member lessons and is going to get her patriarchal blessing this week! The other sister who was recently baptized, Debbie, is working on going to the temple! Things are great here in Kirtland 1st ward and I love being a missionary! Thank you for your letters and emails this week. I hope to hear from you next Monday!
--Elder Petersen


   Elder Cartwright has been very sick since Thursday morning and we have been inside for most of the week. The three days we had before then were pretty good though so no complaints. I am glad that Elder Cartwright is feeling better today! The ward was very helpful with delivering some dinners and making sure my companion was taken care of so It is good. The church has a cool Christmas thing going on called "He is the Gift." It looks pretty good and we have been asked to show it to people this December. I am doing well and now my companion is doing well so this upcoming week will be much better. Talk to you next Monday!
--Elder Petersen

We are living across from a member in an extra home they have. I would say that the home we live in currently is the nicest in the whole mission because a member owns it and it was intended to house sister missionaries so we are living the dream :) Its a super nice double wide trailer with two showers and three bedrooms.

It's December!
   And I am the new District Leader For Kirtland!
Yeah so things are about to get crazy around here. When President Batt told me the news I thought "Are you sure you called the right person?" Thankfully I did not say it out loud! I did not see this one coming and so now I will be a District Leader, a Trainer, and a Senior Companion! I will admit I am a little nervous but I am confident everything will turn out great. The church is relay pushing this new "He is the Gift" Initiative for Christmas this year and so as missionaries we will be telling as many people as we can about it. It is a 2 minute video on the internet that the church made to support the truth that Christmas is about Jesus Christ. We have nice little cards to hand out to people as we contact and there is a lot of advertisement going on through the church. Youtube will only show ads for "He is the Gift" on December 7th to make sure that anyone who goes on youtube that day sees the true meaning of Christmas. Out of time but have a great week! Love you all!
--Elder Petersen

Monday, November 3, 2014

Transfers and new mailing address :)

*playing catch up on the blog for the last couple weeks - sorry about that :)

All is good in the town of Kirtland! I can say that after a week of hard work, now I have some understanding of what it is like to start over in an area. White washing has been one of the hardest things I have done on my mission but it has also been the most rewarding week of my mission so far! (*I looked up what white washing meant - its when both missionaries are new to the area. usually only one missionary is transferred and one stays but this is when both are switched out) We have seen the Lords hand leading us to a great goal and we are exited! My new companion is Elder Cartwright and he is from Michigan. He is 21 years old! So I am being trained really haha. He has a great testimony and is very hard working so things should be great here! We have been finding a lot this past week and we have found some great potentials so things are looking good in the future! Things are calming down now that we have our bearings. Here in Kirtland the members feed us every night and some have even offered to feed us lunch too. This is going to take some getting used to since I have never been off the reservation. This small town feels ginormous in comparison and our home is 20 times bigger than where I was living before! It feels like I have walked into a whole different world. The ward is great, the people are great, the food is great! I feel I am going to like it here :). A spiritual experience we had this week was when we were finding three days ago. For a reason I did not yet fully understand I felt prompted to stop the truck and walk to a house. We only had 15 minutes until our next appointment but we were able to talk to a man outside of this home for a good 10 minutes and he was genuinely interested. He told us to come back this week and so it made me feel glad that I had listened to the spirit. It also seems like since we are both new to the area that the spirit has been working extra hard to get us going. Tons of great experiences have been falling into our laps so to speak and I feel it is because we need all the help we can get. Things are great, I love it here, and I look forward to this upcoming week! Thank you for your letters and emails and I will talk to you next Monday!

--Elder Petersen

*I love catching him online when we can chat back and forth. I asked him if he needed a bike now:

Elder Petersen:       The Mission has bikes that are donated by members and so if we
                                need one the mission office has plenty. Plus we have a truck and
                                a nice house because this used to be a sister missionaries area!
                                The members feed us every day too! We are living in paradise :)

Me:                         Compared to your camper I'm sure it is! Bet you took a
                                looooonnnnggg hot shower!

Elder Petersen:       We have an unlimited supply of hot water, heck yeah! haha and
                                the water here is drinkable

New Mailing address:
Elder Joshua Petersen
6 CR 6559
Kirtland, NM 87417

    I survived Halloween! Our mission president asked us to be in at 6:00 pm during the holiday so that we would be safe. I'll admit I wasn't to happy about it but at least we were doing what was asked of us. I can see why it might be dangerous and maybe even bad to have missionaries out during Halloween.
    This week has been very good! I am amazed at the spiritual preparation that has been put in the lives of those we have come in contact with. God really is preparing the people here for the Gospel! We have been knocking on doors quite a bit and I have seen the hard work paying off. For this area it feels as if Less Active work is what we are sent here to do. Lots of members have fallen away and have stopped their conversion. Hopefully we will be able to help this ward with reactivation. We were teaching a great Investigator but this weekend they moved to Arizona so we will have to keep searching for another Investigator or two this week. I already love the work here in Kirtland and the members have been very supportive! Our ward mission leader has given us a lengthy list of people to visit and it has kept us busy. Elder Cartwright and I are getting along great and I love his commitment to the work! We were finding two days ago and we happened to meet a Youth Pastor for another church here in town. We talked for 30 minutes on his front porch and were able to bear our testimonies of the Book of Mormon and Joseph Smith being a prophet of God. Although there were not any visible results from talking with him and his wife, we knew we did the right thing by not arguing or fighting. We hope that we were able to plant some seeds that a missionary can reap in the future. I feel that we are here in Kirtland for a very important reason and i hope that My companion and I will be able to complete that great purpose. I know that I am here for a good reason! Thank you for your emails this week. It's great to read about all the good that is happening at home as well. Talk to you next week!
--Elder Petersen

Monday, October 13, 2014

My headaches are gone and my ears don't hurt anymore! :D I feel really good this week

    Hello all! This week has been a good one! I feeling much better this week and have not had any headaches since last Wednesday! Things are doing amazing here in Chilchinbito with plenty of work for us to do. Wednesday we went to a Zone conference in Tuba City and were able to watch "Meet the Mormons" which is now in theaters! Pretty amazing movie with some great stories about members of the Church. Very informative too! It shows what Mormon life is like for members all over the world. I recommend watching it because it is very well done! During Zone conference we had a training from the Assistants on appropriate missionary music, and even though they never said flat out what is good and what is bad I felt that I could clean out my music a tad. President and Sister Batt trained on better teaching methods and making sure we take the time to talk about the First vision of Joseph Smith and the Atonement of Jesus Christ. They told us that in some of the teaching they have seen Elders rush too quickly through those subjects and miss the opportunity for a spiritual experience. There were a lot of helpful things I learned from the training. After Zone Conference Elder Winborg and I went on Exchanges with the Zone Leaders in Tuba and we "Blitzed" their area. Elder Winborg and Elder Scofield took the North part of Tuba and Elder Nishimoto and I took the south Side of Tuba. I was able to learn a great amount from Elder Nishimoto which I am grateful for. I have amazing leadership and it has been that way since the day I started my mission! There are a lot of great Elders in this mission! At the end of the exchange Thursday morning Elder Nishimoto gave me a pretty powerful and motivational talk which was greatly needed. With my Headaches the past two weeks I had been struggling to find motivation to go out and work but now I am confident everything is going to be great! Thursday was good because we were able to set up the Baptismal program with an investigator. This past Saturday she was Baptized in Kayenta with a decent turn out. It was a great experience for her and her kids! The spirit was so strong and all the sisters in the Branch were very emotional at the end. It's looking good for her future, I have no doubts that the Branch will take care of her! Yesterday we had a sweet lesson with the two kids who are looking to get baptized soon! We talked about the Temple and their dad was super exited to go as well. The parents are less active members of the Church and so we are hoping they will come back and start working on taking their son to so some Baptism's for the dead after he is Baptized! Now all the dad needs to do is work on getting Sundays off from work. Everything is going very well here and I am exited for all of the Investigators who are making progress. I do not believe I have ever had this many Progressing investigators my whole mission so we are very blessed! We are looking at three more people with a Baptism date in the next week! Great to read your emails and letters this week. Stay Awesome and I will talk to you next Monday!

--Elder Petersen

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Elder Holland is a boss!

Elder Petersen didn't write much of anything for a letter this week. We mostly just chatted back and forth. I love catching him when he is online. :) 

Request from me to you:
-- Could you find a way to make a large detailed map of Chilchinbito so we can mark where people live? The church website has the boundries so maybe dad could figure out how to get all of the close up pictures and you could piece all of them together into one big map... I am thinking this will more effectively mark who has been visited and how to get there so that future generations of missionaries can continue the work where we have left off.
-- Could you also print off an epic picture of Christ with Helaman 5:12 quoted on it? A sister in our ward wants to hang that scripture in her home but we don't have the means to print.
-- Also, Elder Acaylar my last companion had a birthday last Sunday and has 0% family support because they are not members of the church. I want to send him something so he feels loved haha. He loves zelda and Minecraft so maybe you could send him those funny pictures/cartoons you have been sending me of Minecraft and such. He also has been missing those real pretzels you get at carnivals or sams club so maybe you could include one of those big ones. Anyways, If you are okay with it he could use a happy birthday, even if it is late. I will have the Napierski's send you his address tomorrow, with a note from me to him, while we are working out there.

much appreciated :) Please only do this if you can. I don't want you to stress out too much about it. These are things I cant do on my own

I am almost out of time so I will have to update you on this last week, next week instead. Simple summary is that Elder Holland is a boss! :D and Chilchinbito is continuing to be supper awesome! Bye Love You!

So I started working on the maps for Josh and I've been pulling it from the church website and then just piecing it together and i thought - there has to be an easier way, so i looked for maps online and found a several road atlas' on ebay and have been asking the sellers if it includes a map of both cities. this one seller replied it did so i asked her to send a picture and how big it was in inches. this is what she sent back..... 

hahahaha!!!!!!!!! um, no, that wont work, thanks though! :) 

so for his next request of an epic picture of christ for Helaman 5:12 which is;  And now, my sons, remember, remember that it is upon the rock of our Redeemer, who is Christ, the Son of God, that ye must build your foundation; that when the devil shall send forth his mighty winds, yea, his shafts in the whirlwind, yea, when all his hail and his mighty storm shall beat upon you, it shall have no power over you to drag you down to the gulf of misery and endless wo, because of the rock upon which ye are built, which is a sure foundation, a foundation whereon if men build they cannot fall."  I found this picture by Scott Sumner. how's that for epic? :) I called the guy and he's going to print the scripture on it for me.

we love spoiling missionaries so the next request was easy :)

Elder Petersen did tell me last week that Elder Holland was visiting: "We get to see Elder Holland on Saturday at a missionary fireside! but you cant tell anyone. It's low key so no one knows he will be there. but they gave us a list of rules and this was one of them...
(7) Absolutely no pictures are to be taken in the chapel (this is church policy). No voice recording of this fireside is allowed. Please limit your picture taking to enable you to return home as early as possible. If you take pictures, do it the cultural hall or outside."

this is what his companion Elder Winborg said about Elder Holland's visit: "
Then on Saturday was the greatest thing that has ever happen to me up to this point in my life! I not
only got to listen to Elder Holland, but Elder Petersen and I got to shake his
hand!!!! We had to be at the fireside early because Elder Petersen was singing
in the musical number for the fireside. We were there a bit early and was just
talking to some people in the chapel when Elder Holland walked by. He stopped
and shook our hands, asked us how we were doing, and told us to keep up the
good work. During his talked it really opened my eyes and made me remember why I
am on a mission!"

Monday, September 1, 2014

" the moment four people are committed to be baptized in the next month and a half so we are exited!"

  Hello ha. Things are going well here and this past week has been a good one! Monday we had interviews with our Mission President and that was good! I  like talking to President Batt and his wife :) We also got to practice teaching the plan of salvation with Sister Batt and she told me I did very well so I'm going to take her word for it haha. It's always fun teaching in a "practice" setting, different, but fun. Tuesday we worked in Dennehotso for the day and that was good. There is an investigator there who has been going with her kids for two months now and this week we invited her to be baptized and she committed so at the moment four people are committed to be baptized in the next month and a half so we are exited! Wednesday we taught three investigators and one less active member and they were all really good lessons. One of the lessons was with the two kids who will be baptized on the 20th of September and they are really coming along! Thursday we had a really good District meeting with some helpful teachings from our District Leader. The end of the meeting was a little scary though because Elder  Coulson asked me to talk about being a diligent missionary for 5 to 10 minutes. I prepared all last week and it went alright. I definitely learned from studying it so overall it wasn't too bad. The rest of the day we went on exchanges and Elder Coulson went with me to Chilchinbito for the day. We did some service but unfortunately three of our appointments canceled and all we were able to do is set up appointments with people for other days so we didnt teach that day. Friday we switched back to our normal companionships and Elder coulson went back to Monument Valley while Elder Winborg and I went to Chilchinbito. The day was really good and we were able to meet with three people. One of the lessons was with a member family that we committed to give away two copies of the Book of Mormon. Their still working on it haha. Saturday we took down a shade house at a less active members home and that took two hours. Hard work but it was fun. We also had a much needed lesson with a part member family that we have not seen since Elder Winborg got here. They are done working out in Durango Colorado so they are home more. We are going to see them again later this week. Sunday was good because the whole chapel was full! more than 35 people came so it was a good turn out! All three of the investigators on baptism date showed up so that was even better! We finished the day with another three lessons and had dinner at a members home so it was a good week. Thats pretty much it so I will have to talk to you all next Monday. Talk to you then.

--Elder Petersen

Monday, August 25, 2014

I don't know what I did to deserve this area but it is Awesome and I like it a lot!

Ya'at'eeh Shima do Shizhe'e!
    This week has been GOOD! Probably my favorite part was when an Investigator (Marlana)  told us she caries the Book of Mormon around with her everywhere she goes and isn't afraid to tell people about it! She is a single mom and her and her two kids came to church Yesterday. She is scheduled to be baptized September 27th. Also two kids, Carlial (brother) and Carleas (sister), who are scheduled to be baptized on September 20th came to church as well! They are super cool and are getting their parents active through their example! We asked the members to take them to church and it was great to see their support. The whole branch welcomed them and all Three Investigators have fellowship here already! Last Monday we went to the Temple and it was Amazing! Got to see some new stuff and had the chance to talk with Elder Nicholson my trainer! He is a Zone leader in Page with my first District leader Elder Beck! Elders Beck and Nicholson lived with me in Many Farms so it was funny that they are now companions! haha Elder Winborg is doing Amazing! In just 4 weeks he is already taking charge in lessons and teaching with the spirit. I love letting him teach because he is very humble about it and he means what he says. It's also very simple teaching so it is perfect for some of these people who are new to the gospel. We keep having days where it might not say we did well on our numbers but we both agree that it was still an amazing day! So many people tell us that we come at the right time and that they were looking for what we told them and they didn't even know it! We are being led to the people who truly need us! The ward members are gung-ho about helping us now and we have been challenging the members to give a Book of Mormon to their friends and family. Five of them are currently writing their testimonies in the Book and will be giving them to those who need them this week! I don't know what I did to deserve this area but it is Awesome and I like it a lot! haha. Yesterday we spent the whole day finding the lost sheep and that was very cool. We thought of all the people that we have been neglecting to see and sure enough, all of them were home and all of them needed us! We are going to be very busy this week because almost every day is booked with appointments already! It's a good thing and at least it makes planing easier so I wont complain. =P Thank you for your letters and emails this week! Have a good 7 days and I will talk to you next Monday!

--Elder Petersen

Jared saw a tv show with Navajos eating sheep intestines so he asked Elder Petersen if he's tried it yet.... 

Elder Petersen:
Jared, yes I have tried sheep intestine here before. They call it Aachee' which is Navajo for sheep intestine. It tastes ok but probably not my favorite. Its like eating soggy bacon that tastes like old noodles. It's a little bland but the people here love it! Sounds like life is good! Keep being Awesome!
Your brother,
--Elder Petersen

Side note from me (Ruth):
So this week Sister Biser in our ward called me and said she was going on a trip and will be near the mission home and wanted to know if she could take anything down for us. I told her of course! Because I didn't have to worry about shipping weight or size I went a little crazy on the goodies and ended up with 2 small boxes of stuff. I didn't want the mission president to think I was spoiling my son (which I was!) so I searched through Josh's emails to find the name of his current companion and put his name on the boxes too. That following Saturday, we took our missionaries and another set of missionaries that used to be in our ward (Elder Hern) out to dinner and I asked the new missionary what his name was. He told me and I said, wow - that sounds really familiar!?! Do you have a missionary relative in Arizona right now? He said, I think so. So i checked Elder Petersen's mission blog to see if I could find that name and sure enough! it was the name I had written on the boxes!!! They are cousins! We took a few pictures and I was able to email them to his mom which in turn got me in touch with Josh's companion's mom! Yay!! I loved staying in touch with his first companions mom, sharing pictures and stories and I was hoping I could do the same with his current companion and now I can! :) 

From Elder Petersen:
Elder Winborg logged in to his email and pulled up this picture. I asked him why he had a picture of my dad and he said, "Why is your dad with my cousin?" haha That's freaking Cool! Tell him his cousin is the and is leading the work out here in Airizona! Good companion :)

Thursday, August 21, 2014

It's hard to believe he's been gone a whole year!!!! :D time flies!

I'm so bad about getting Elder Petersen's emails out the last couple of weeks. There really wasn't much anyway :)

last week:

Ya'at'eeh! Things are going super smooth now here in "Chilly Burrito"  and Elder Winborg have already hit it off pretty well! We get along and he has already started taking the lead in teaching situations so it wont be long till its just a regular and equal companionship without hiccups or bumps in teaching. He has a really powerful testimony too. Its great to hear him teach and testify as a new missionary with conviction and with the spirit. Proof that anyone can be a missionary and that all you need is the spirit to teach. We aren't the ones talking, its the Lord talking through us! That's what I am beginning to understand more fully this new transfer and it is great! Last Monday we met with a couple recent converts to try and review what they were thought before baptism but it turned into them asking Elder Winborg a bunch of questions so it was pretty hectic haha. Once everyone has met my new companion then maybe we will be able to teach.. But its good. Tuesday we worked in Dennehotso and helped the senior couple out there build a porch and pour concrete so that was fun! Wednesday we saw a few people we needed to visit so that was good. Thursday was pretty regular. Friday we met with a super cool guy named Mickey! He went to school in Utah as a kid and was baptized as a teenager but since he got home he has never been back to church. We found him earlier in the week and got to share the Plan of salvation with him. He is super exited to come back to church, especially since it has been 40 years! great guy and I am glad we were led to find him! Saturday we took apart a shed that had blown over at a members home and that was cool. we also meet with a Family who is committed to coming back to church because they know it will strengthen their family. The wife is not a member so we will be inviting her to baptism soon. Yesterday we Invited a brother and sister to baptism and they gladly excepted. We have been teaching them for a week now and they are all for it. They remember what we teach them and they read every day! We have 3 other people that we will be inviting to baptism this week so there are more on the way! Things are going good and I love this place more than ever. The people here are what make it good. Thank you for your letters and emails this week, talk to you next Monday!

--Elder Petersen

This week's emails - he's not much of a talker!:

email 1: The MRI shows nothing is wrong with my brain so I will be fine. Sister Batt just thinks its stress and that there is nothing too crazy to be worried about. I haven't had a headache for a week now so It's going away.

email 2: By the way, my camera broke... Last Monday right after I emailed I turned it on and the lens jammed up. It is stuck half way out and I cant do anything to fix it. I think the motor in the camera went out. I'll send it home on Thursday. You should see if that make and model of camera is common for lens problems and see if you can talk to Panasonic about covering it under warranty. This is the 3rd camera that has had the same problem...

email 3: I was very exited when I found out brother Newby is the Bishop. I freaked out and told my companion that my Priest quorum adviser is now my bishop!

email 4: So... To make this short...
I need you to contact this number for me (gives the number)
It's the Ahasteen's in Many Farms and they left me a treat with a note saying call them on our door step Saturday night. I cant call them to say thank you so could you or Sister Logan do it for me? Tell them thank you soo much!

email 5: Bye! Love You Mom! Talk to you next Monday!

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Call from the mission home - and a Josh laugh in the background :)

I got a phone call from the mission home Monday. The secretary asked me for Josh's social security number so he could go to the Dr's. I asked what for and I could hear her ask him and he laughed and said tell her not to worry about it. (good to hear his laugh!). She said, he'll write you about it today I'm sure. Here's his email.....

Hey mom, thanks for my social security number. I need to memorize but thanks for giving it to Sister Garett. I want you to know that I am doing fine and that going to the doctor was just a precaution. Two weeks ago during my morning studies I got a headache, my left arm went numb and I couldn't feel my fingers for 20 minutes. This morning it happened again so Sister Batt insisted that I see a doctor just to make sure its nothing serious. Do you remember that one morning when Rachel and I were going to school and my left hand went numb? It was kinda like that and just like before it went away quickly. I just got back from seeing an LDS doctor here in Farmington and he said its nothing to worry about but he does want me to come back in a week or two to get an MRI. He said that It could be a pinched nerve but he's not sure until we get the results from the scan. I feel 100% so I'm not worried. Whats new with you?

*it was fun chatting back and forth with Josh this week - funny conversation:

          me:      i bought a new kitchen table and chairs, do you want me to keep the old
                     set for when you get married?
          Josh:   I don't like the thought of getting married! It's too early to be thinking
                    about that! haha  Um.. I don't know. It sure would be nice.. I'll let you
                    decide. I like free stuff
          Me:     And um – my brothers were married within a year of them getting 
                            home! I have a  feeling  you wont last too long!
          Josh:   When I get home I'll hide from girls and avoid romantic situations 
                     like the plague lol I can hardly talk to people about Jesus... It's 
                     going to be impossible for me to talk to girls xP
          me:     Rachel says that’s not going to work because girls can smell 
                           hot-ness and RM-ness!
             Josh:    "   *ignored*   "

The Farari is Elder James' car (Mission Housing Coordinator) and he took us to lunch two Farmington trips ago. I took the picture from Elder Acaylar's Camera before he left. My new companions name is Elder Winborg and he is from Logan Utah. He worked on a farm and likes country music. He played Hockey and loves sports... But there are some things here and there that we have been able to talk about that we have in common. I like him as a companion already because he is very motivated and works hard. He also is very obedient and listens to what I share with hem in training. Willing to learn basically and it has made this past week very good!  

(I told Josh he's going to have a lot of people mixing him and his companion up - they look A LOT alike!)

Ya'at'eeh! This week has been very good with lots of nice finds! We had lessons with 5 new people and met a total of 18 new people who we can see later this week! My new Companion Elder Winborg is a very good companion and is good at working hard. He is from a farm back in Logan Utah and loves the Reservation already! We have been every where in the area just about so he has seen most of it. Now our goal is to knock on everyone's door before the end of his training. Tuesday i picked him up in Farmington and we drove back to Dennehotso to work out there for the rest of the day. He got to meet the Napierski's and meet the 12 year old kid who was baptized two months ago. Wednesday we had a very busy day and ended up with five lessons and a whole bunch of new contacts. We also painted the inside of the modulars at the school with a less active member so that was cool. We were beat by the time we came home that night. Thursday We went to district meeting in Kayenta and met our new District leader. He stepped down from a Zone Leader position to Train a new missionary and open up Monument Valley as a new mission area. He is a legend in the mission so it is a privilege to have him as a district leader! The rest of the day we visited two people and were able to do two hours of finding in the housing's here in Chilchinbito. Friday was a tad slow but still good. Saw one person and met five new people. Saturday we drove so much we hit the daily limit for miles and started walking the rest of the day. Met 6 new people doing that! And Sunday we had an investigator at church and watched two Recent Converts bear their testimony. Pretty cool! It was a good day as well. Things are looking up for this area and I can see this branch becoming a Ward soon if the work continues to pick up like it has. I love being on a mission and wouldn't give it up for anything! Thank you for your letters and emails. Cya!
--Elder Petersen

Monday, July 28, 2014

Chilchinbito is the best area in the mission, just sayin. ... Love you all, stay cool, stay crispy! Hagonee'!

Ya'at'eeh! Wow! I didn't think this would happen again but President Batt assures me this is for reals.. I am Training a new missionary in Chilchinbito this new transfer. I am driving up to Farmington tonight to pick up my new companion in the morning. President called us a day early so that was even scarier! He told me I am training and then told Elder Acaylar his new area. He told Elder Acaylar he was being sent to the Mesa Mission and then after a few screams from my companion and a chuckle from President Batt he told him his real new area. Our mission president has a since of humor! He is going to Steam boat, Az and now I am taking over the missionary work here in Chilchinbito. I'm going to miss Elder Acaylar though, he was a good companion. The smallest communities are the best places to be a missionary by the way! The Chilchinbito branch had a unit dinner last night to say goodbye to my companion. It was really special. Every member of the branch took turns standing and saying what they liked most about Elder Acaylar and how they are going to miss him when he's gone! As you can clearly see, he is a very good missionary! It was a privilege being his companion. Well, our week was a good one to end on. We did even more service and finding and now we have a decent potential teaching list for me and my new companion to work with. The branch members have been fully supporting the work and have been driving the investigators to church so that has been a real blessing. I have seen a lot of progress since I have been here and lately it has been sky rocketing with tons of potential! Whoever is my new companion is going to love the next couple of transfers because it's going to be fun! Chilchinbito is the best area in the mission, just sayin. Well not much to report this week but I will have plenty to talk about next Monday. Love you all, stay cool, stay crispy! Hagonee'!

--Elder Petersen

me in a fararii in Farmington. It's Elder James' car :D

bob the dog

me with first four zone leaders

a little native girl named Kissy Bear riding a dog named Phil.

Me with companion Elder Acaylar

Monday, July 21, 2014

Elder Acaylar and I have never herded cattle before so the family was laughing at us...We had to rope the cows and then tie them up while pulling from all sides with ropes. That's when the guy in charge would come over and brand the cattle. I felt like a straight up cowboy. It was Awesome!

Ya'at'eeh! This week has been the coolest week for service ever in the history of missionary work! We worked with so many different people it was amazing how much we got done! Probably the best part is the fact that we now have two new families to teach from service. Last Monday we drove to Farmington to get our new/old truck aligned and serviced but we should be getting a new one soon to replace the one we have now so that's good. Elder James the Housing coordinator in the mission office took us to lunch while we were waiting so that was nice. Later in the evening we had a branch cook out and had burgers and hotdogs with grilled corn and some other stuff and it was a good turn out. Everyone had fun and the Branch president was able to share a spiritual thought on missionary work! Tuesday we drove to Dennehotso and helped a recent convert family pull weeds in their front yard. The recent convert is the 12 year old kid who was baptized a month and a half ago and unfortunately he was out of town with his grandma so we didn't get to see him. The good news is that night he got home and he called us to invited us to his home tomorrow evening for a lesson because he misses us haha! He is a really cool kid! The rest of our Tuesday we spent helping the Senior couple there in Dennehotso work on some little things here and there that they needed help with. They are super cool too! Wednesday, we helped build a shade house/ shed thing for and older couple that needed help and were able to get most of the walls built. We had some really good lessons with less active members and had a really good lesson with a new investigator family that shows some promise. Thursday we had an epic district meeting. Elder Moser is our district leader and he is going home in a week so he taught us everything he has learned on his mission, which was very helpful. Sad to see him go though, good guy. We then went back to the older couple's home with the shade house and helped them finish the walls and part of the roof. While helping them with that they started herding their cattle into their coral for branding. Its that time of year so they needed to get them all in one place. Elder Acaylar and I have never herded cattle before so the family was laughing at us. There were a few times where we were able to get them to the coral but half of the herd would slip past and run away from us. It took 4 tries before we got all of them into the coral. It was amazing and actually really fun to work with their ranch. That evening we noticed their were tents out front of the Chilchinbito school and went to go see what was going on. Turns out it was a group of students on a Tour De Rez bike cross country trip. They were super cool and nice. They even asked if we wanted to ride bikes the next morning with them. We rode 11 miles with some bikes they lent us and were able to talk to the leaders about the church. Almost half of them were members so it was cool. Friday was slow but worth it. We had one super important lesson with an investigator we haven't seen in a few weeks and they are looking to back into it so we are exited! We finished the roof of the shade house that day too. Saturday we helped brand cattle at a different home further out in the boonies for a new family who wants to take the lessons! It was the coolest thing ever because they handed us ropes and said "alright go for it." We had to rope the cows and then tie them up while pulling from all sides with ropes. That's when the guy in charge would come over and brand the cattle. I felt like a straight up cowboy. It was Awesome! Now I can say I have roped cows and helped brand. They had a huge lunch afterwords where we got to talk to all of their family about the church! Almost all of them lived close by and wanted us to share our message with them! They were laughing and telling jokes with us so it was fantastic! Really cool Family! Sunday we had a really good sacrament meeting. Branch president asked a family to give a talk and during the week they had a huge fiasco thing go down with one of their relative going to prison but despite the huge distraction they still prepared and gave talks! That's a lot of commitment. Very proud of them, and good talks. The rest of the day we visited everyone we could to make up for all the service we did that week and it was decent because we managed to see 4 families. Things are doing really well here in Chilchinbito and I am exited to see how next week is. Thank you for listening and I hope you have a great week. Talk to you next Monday! Hagonee'!

--Elder Petersen

*this is a picture he sent a while ago but i thought it matched what he did this week :)

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Elder Petersen the puppy-napper :)

Ya'at'eeh! This week has been awesome!  <-- This made my day! The rest of my week has been really good too! Last Monday we cleaned and emailed and all that stuff but in the evening we went teaching again and had some good lessons. Tuesday we worked in Dennehotso with the senior couple out there and we were able to get a lot of garden work done with them. We also helped put in a new sink for a member and organized the Garden map for them so they know where everything is. It was funny because the Napierski's are not very savvy when it comes to electronics so we have been helping them with computer stuff. They think my companion is the technology whisperer haha. Wednesday we went on exchanges and I went with Elder Tipitts in Kayenta. It was my first time meeting people in Kayenta so it was fun teaching and meeting them for the first time. I learned some things that were helpful like the importance of bearing testimony throughout the lesson and offering service in door approaches. I'm hoping I'll be able to apply what I learned to Chilchinbito. Thursday was our Zone training in Tuba city so we drove an hour to get there. It was pretty good. The zone leaders told us we are the smallest zone in the mission with only 12 missionaries. The rest of the day was limited on time so by the time we got back we were only able to have two lessons. Friday we worked our heads off looking for anyone who was home but with the holiday everyone was ether out of town or with family so they didn't want to see us. We did see one person and found a new investigator so it was worth the effort. Later in the evening we went to President Holiday's house for dinner. He is the Branch president for Dennehotso so the Napierski's were there and we had fun eating and talking. That night Elder Acaylar and I sat outside and watched the fireworks for a while and then called it a night. Saturday we met TWO new families who are awesome! Both times they let us right in, we had a lesson and told us to come back. One of the families is a part member family and they came to church yesterday. Their son wants to be baptized so we are going to work with him too. Should be a great week ahead of us. Sunday we had a great fast and testimony meeting, very spiritual. And then we had two lessons and had family home evening with a member family that cant do it on Mondays. They are unfamiliar with how to have family home evening so we have been helping them. Last night we had a fireside. Before it we picked up some wood from the second counselors home and while we were picking up wood their 3 month old puppy kept getting in the way. As a joke I put him in back of the truck with the wood and he stayed. As we were driving away Elder Acaylar looked back and was like "What the??" He kept driving though so we sort of stole their dog for the evening. It was fun having the puppy at the fireside and later when we took him home the owners started laughing because they didn't even notice he was gone. It was good because we got to Laugh and break the ice with the family and talk to the second counselor about maybe even teaching with us. Pretty funny experience, I'll have to send a picture next week because I forgot my camera. lol That was my week, hope yours was good too. Until next time, Bye! Hagonee'! talk to you next week!   --Elder Sen of Peter

Monday, June 30, 2014

This mission is awesome!

Ya'at'eeh!! Sorry for last week. The Library computers are lame and like to crash a lot so last week I ran out of time. I'll try to make this weekly report a good one and I might add some stuff from last week if I can remember what we did. I didn't have time to explain the picture. A member family called us in a panic and said there was a snake in their house so we went over to help them out. (Natives hate snakes) and so we were the ones to get it out of their house. We tried to find this thing in their back room for 15 minutes and had no luck. The oldest son was helping us and finally we heard him start flipping out and yelling like crazy! we rushed over and lifted up a bed frame on the floor and there it was! we hit it with a stick and dragged it outside. Elder Acaylar went super commando and cut its head off and threw the head far away. Turns out it wasn't a deadly snake, but hey! we did give service in a way that you wouldn't even think about giving anywhere else! This mission is awesome!

Last week we  painted parking lines in the school parking lot for service..  you probably already know, but Elder Acaylar and I are still companions in Chilchinbito and stuff so I'll move on to the big stuff now. Last Saturday an investigator got baptized in Kayenta (Chilchinbito doesn't have a font.) He is 10 and has been meeting with the missionaries for 4 months now. He is very converted, and he knows more than your average kid. In the interview to be baptized he was asking our District leader a ton of questions and was interviewing him almost. In two years he will be ready for the Priesthood and can pass the sacrament for the branch, which has not had a deacon in over 5 years!! 
This area is growing faster than it has in the past, which shows me that it has been waiting for missionaries for a while. Elder Acaylar and I are the second set of missionaries they have put here so it is very new! We have 3 more people who are getting close to baptism as well and there are two less active families who have started to come back to the church. Lately we have been relying on the members to tell us what to do for the branch and it has helped a lot. Two member families have been on board with missionary work and have shown us people that are interested but just haven't had anyone there to show them how to join the church. It has been more less active members that they are referring us to but it is great because then we can invite the members who referred us to go with. We are going to ask a newly activated member to go teaching with us this week so I'll have to let you know how it goes. If we can get all of the members active then this branch would easily become a ward. Last Monday we ate dinner with the Branch president in Dennehotso and we were able to get something going there too. The Senior couple there appreciates our help every tuesday. We have been providing the service work so they can concentrate on the teaching the rest of the week which has really gotten Dennehotso going. Their attendance in sacrament meeting is going up each Sunday. Wednesday we went on exchanges and I had to take over the area again, which is scary because I'm new. and we were able to see every recent convert in Chilchinbito which was really good. We tried stopping by a ton of other people but Wednesdays are when everyone goes to Kayenta to sell stuff at the Flee market so not a whole lot happened other than the three lessons. Thursday we took our truck to Farmington because it was having problems (chevy Colorado = piece of junk). And the driving coordinator for the mission found out it was problems with the hub and transmission so he had to give us a new truck. We ended up with a used Nissan Frontier which is a good truck but this one was secretly broken too. The people who had it before us used the e-brake while the car was moving and it snapped the cable so it didn't have an emergency brake. The mission knew this but said it would be safe for us to drive for now as long as we came in and had it fixed in a few weeks. While taking it home from Farmington the whole inside of the brake pad ripped to pieces and the whole E-break system shattered into little chunks that jammed and locked up the wheels. Elder Shrum the Mission truck coordinator said that it was his mistake and that we could have gotten in a wreck on the freeway. 

We then got another truck to replace the replacement so it's been a little crazy. The truck we have now is another Chevy Colorado (an old one) which we aren't to happy about but at least we can drive to appointments. While driving to Kayenta this morning the right signal light on our truck rattled loose and fell out. The Colorado's are cheep. This is why tithing is so important, so that the mission can buy more Nissans haha. The Colorado's are being taken out of the mission and they are buying more Frontiers because the driving coordinator hates the old trucks so the mission will be swapping out the truck we have now with a new one within the next two months. That will be exiting! The Nissans are super tough and Elder Shrum says there have not been any problems with them since they got their first group last year. So that took up pretty much the rest of the week. Saturday was the Baptism, Sunday was the confirmation of the Holy Ghost. Despite all the trials the missionary work is continuing to grow here in Chilchinbito and it is great! I love it here and it is going to be a great week. Talk to you next Monday! Hagonee'!