Jacob reported on his mission on Sunday, March 10th. He gave an awesome talk, but since he didn’t write out anything I can’t post it on here, dang! Here are some pictures from the get together afterwards.
Wednesday, March 6, 2013
Elder Hatch returned home from Peru on February 28th! He will report on his mission this Sunday, March 10th and 9:00 a.m. at the Summit Ward building at the corner of Devonshire Dr. and Foothill Dr. Come after Sacrament meeting to the Hatch home for food and to visit with Jacob. Pictures of him arriving at the airport in Utah and of his parents picking him up in Peru are coming!
P.S. Remember that Sunday, March 10th is Daylight Savings!
Monday, February 11, 2013
I have so many mixed feelings right now!
looking back to the day i went into the mtc, it feels like it was such a short time ago, but when i go back and think about the individual experiences, i can't believe so many things happened and that i've learned so many things in just two years. It has been amazing. Honestly, i don't feel like it's ever going to end.. but people keep reminding me that it's almost over.. it's basically all anyone talks about to me anymore.
This sunday i gave a talk in church. Finally when i've got giving talks in spanish down and it's totally normal for me to talk in spanish, i have to start working back into english mode.. I feel like talking in English is going to be a struggle. On sunday i talked about the scripture in Luke when Christ tells Peter that he had prayed for him, that his faith wouldn't falter, and that when he was converted he could strengthen his brothers (it's something like that.. i'm trying to translate it into english) and i compared it to how the members have to have faith to participate in missionary work. a lot of times when we try to get references from them they tell us that nobody wants to hear the gospel and that they've already tried with everyone.. i spoke to them very directly about that. Then, i talked about the second part, about how we need to be converted to help others. I took a little part from Elder Bednar's talk from the october conference, which is amazing. It went great, and i felt so good. Sometimes when i give talks i feel weird after, like i didn't get my message across, but this time it got there. After sacrament meeting a lady came up to me crying and thanked me for helping her realized she's not converted and that she needs to make some serious changes (she was one of the people who had told us that nobody in her whole neighborhood wanted to listen to us... Victor and María are from her neighborhood.) I was surprised and kind of felt bad, but it was cool that she was humble enough to let the spirit help her change. It's so much easier to just not listen, or think that the things don't apply to us.
This weekend was nuts. We didn't really go out to work at all.
Saturday was the offiicial start of carnavales. That day we went on a trip with the ward to a cool farm like an hour away. That day here in cajamarca people go out in crazy gangs and get drunk and paint people and houses and cars, throw rocks, etc. it's nuts. When we got back from our little trip it looked like a post-war zone. And today was the sweetest parade ever known to man. It started at ten in the morning and went until 7 at night! It's so cool. I can't even explain it. Imagine thousands and thousands of semi-drunk people throwing water balloons (seriously, everyone throwing water balloons) and an 8 hour long parade!! The water fights are so nuts that they shut off the power in the whole city so that the power lines don't fall and kill people! That's why i'm writing late today. We watched the action from the third floor of a house and were throwing tons of water balloons at drunk ladies sitting in the street.. And when the parade was almost over they came up to where we were and soaked us with pots full of water! I was so, so cold.
But now it's back to work! One more week of the glory, then i get to move on to other things. I'm so excited to see mom and dad and go see Perú, it's going to be awesome.
Thanks everyone for always supporting me, i love you so much!
Monday, February 4, 2013
This week was great.
On thursday Victor and María were baptized and confirmed, because victor had to travel for work and wasn't sure if he could be there for church on sunday to be confirmed, so we just did it all at once. I baptized Victor and confirmed María, and elder Giraldo did the same but opposite. It was a very spiritual service and everything went perfectly. I'm so happy for them! And after all, Victor made it to church on sunday, and said his wife has changed a ton in these few days just since their baptism. What an amazing experience just at the end of my mission.
We're also teaching another family that has been investigating for almost a year now.. We had a super powerful lesson with them last night, and the mom, who's the doubtful one, said we resolved a bunch of her doubts and felt something special telling her it was true. I made sure to explain to her that it was the spirit and that it's because God wants her to follow those promptings! A few more good lessons with them and they should accept a baptismal date. But there's not time for me to get to baptize them because they're going on vacation to Trujillo for a week :(
Other than that, we're looking for new investigators. We have a lot of good investigators but they're never home, it's so frustrating! We had three days go by with only three lessons, it was terrible. But i'm just happy we could baptize Victor and María.
Genaro and Sonia, the family we baptized a few weeks ago, fasted this week! And María already paid tithing this week! It's so amazing to see these people putting the tough principles in practice and progressing spiritually so quickly! Victor and María are travelling to Lima where their families live, and Victor´s parents are members, so they want to go to the temple together and do baptisms! We don't know if their paperwork will be able to be processed fast enough to get it all through, but that would be the best.
Other than that, i'm just happy, loving life, and i can't believe that it's all going to be over in a few weeks. I feel like it's going to be a lot harder to go home than it was to leave on the mission.
I love the gospel, and am so grateful to have had it in my life. I hope we can all truly appreciate it and apply Christ's sacrifice daily to help us become better people. We have to commit ourselves to change the things we know aren't right, and when we do it we can honestly feel His love for us.
I love you!
Here's the baptism!! I'm wearing the onesie that was supposed to be for Victor, but his shoulders were too wide to fit in, so he used my clothes and i used his.. i think it's a good look for me. :)
Monday, January 28, 2013
I´ll start with what happened on monday.
We went to Victor and María's house and i was super nervous, expecting an explosion and basically the worst. But when we got there Victor was smiling... and i was thinking hmm, it feels different here. María was there too, and offered us a drink and cookies they bought in a little pueblo called Jesus like a half hour from here.. So i was confused that they had gone somewhere together because they weren't even talking or looking at each other in the morning. Victor told us he had something to tell us. They took seriously all the things we told them in the morning. One thing we told them was to take some time just the two of them and talk about the things they needed to change. They did it! They took a little trip the two of them to Jesus and on the way Victor felt like someone opened up his chest and blew air on it, something he had never felt before (i love when people don't realize the holy ghost is talking to them, but recognize it´s a good feeling and follow it.) He felt like he needed to tell María he just wanted to start over again and forget everything that had happened in the past, and she said yes! They were still pretty tense, but the situation was definitely better. We talked a lot, watched the church movie called together forever (the first two segments are basically exactly their lives) and it all really hit home. The spirit was so strong, and they told us that they want to be baptized together this week! So, in one day they went from being on the point of separation to planning to being baptized together. All i could do after teaching them was thank Heavenly Father for being a part of that amazing change. The changes they are making in their lives are truly miracles, and i get to see first hand how the gospel blesses families. That's what i gave my farewell talk about, but now i feel so much stronger and have so much more experience in how it changes people's lives drastically. Their relationship is still hanging by threads, but i'm confident that once they get baptized this thursday things will get better. I love them, they're probably the most special family i've met here in the mission.
Cajamarca is the center for all of Perú in carnavales, aka giant water fights all day every day and a lot of drunk people. The rule is that girls can only get boys wet and visa versa, so that's kind of nice.. girls don't throw water balloons as well. You would think they would respect missionaries, but no.. I've been pretty good about dodging their attempts to soak me, but once a little girl snuck up behind me and poured a 3 liter bottle of water on me. I tried to defend myself but i had my planner in my hand and couldn't stop her. Another time we walked by some little girls with water guns that looked harmless, but when we had passed by them they shot me. But i haven't gotten too wet. Some girls poured a bucket on my companion's head, it was funny. I decided not to participate (even missionaries water balloon people here! it's nuts) for the first three weeks, i thought it was too barbaric, but then the family of our pensionista always goes up on their roof after lunch and dominates people every day, and bit by bit they got me to participate. I've only hit a few people with water balloons. :)
I feel the end coming.. Last night one of the missionaries in our zone said that the vultures are already flying around me.. haha. But i'm still working 100 percent and loving every minute. I honestly love and feel so happy when i'm teaching. Knocking doors and stuff is a chore, but i enjoy it in a way.. But when we can teach and have an investigator who's seriously interested, i'm in heaven. :)
I love you family, i´ll see you soon!
Monday, January 21, 2013
Thanks Lindsey and Kristen for writing me!!! I'm so pumped that Lindsey is coming to my homecoming! :)
This week... wow. I don't even know what to say. First of all, i officially complete my two year mission this week. Everyone in my zone is asking me to leave them clothes, ties, my football, etc. I have to leave a lot behind, so it'll be easy to be loving to them :) But no, i don't feel trunky. I honestly could go another year in the mission.. but it's time to get back to real life.
First of all, the Ascate family got baptized!! It was my most stressful baptismal service yet. We didn't get the baptismal clothes worked out very well, and we were running around last minute, because we were doing a service project in an inactive man's farm all morning and got back like an hour before the baptism.. Then when Sonia, the mom, was getting baptized, she got super nervous and wouldn't get into the water.. ten minutes later when we coaxed her in, she had to be baptized five times to finally be submerged. After the third time she said no, that's it, I'm done. and got out of the font and was standing there crying, but our pensionista, hna Corina, who's a champ, calmed her down and got her to go back into the water and it finally worked. Their 8 year old son Baruc was being super irreverent and yelling and trying to swim in the water the whole time.. but oh well, it's over now and they all got baptized and confirmed!
But the real story of the week is the Tello Ortega family, aka Victor and María. They have serious marriage problems, but we were working through things and from what we could see they have progressed a TON. In the morning Victor called us and told us he needed to talk to us urgent, so during our P-day activity in the church they both came and while the zone had a water balloon fight outside i had the roughest hour and a half conversation ever. Last night they had a big fight over a miscommunication about folding clothes (it was the breaking point for them both) and Victor decided he needs to move out and move to Trujillo- like 6 hours away. They are both devastated, and so sad for what is happening to their kids when they see them fight all the time. So, victor wants to leave the situation and just be alone for a long time. We tried to talk to them, but they both have so much bottled up anger toward each other. I don't have much experience as a marriage counselor, but we gave them lots of advice, and we're going to talk to them tonight. I feel sick. I know the Lord had them find us specifically because He knew this was exactly when they need the Gospel, and i am hoping and praying (please pray for them too) that we can get to their hearts tonight and save their marriage. It's so tragic. I love them so much, and just want the best for them!
Crazy news, because of the surge of missionaries, the missions had to change the transfer schedule, so all the missionaries in my group who haven't gone home yet, are going home one week earlier, aka the 12th. But, because of my special situation with my parents coming to pick me up, i'm going to stick around another week. I'm going to seriously be the last man standing. But i feel like there's so much for me to do here! I love it.
I know the gospel is true and designed to bless us, and especially our family. I have learned so many lessons in the mission that i hope to apply to myself and the Tello Ortega family about how to forgive, communicate, and express the positive things we see in others. I know if we truly live the gospel in our lives we will be blessed.
I love you!
here's the picture of the baptism! The bishop baptized them.
if i look like a tomato, it's because i got super sunburned in the service on the farm in the morning!
Monday, January 14, 2013
I laughed out loud like three times in dad's letter to me. I love you dad :)
I can't believe how cold it is in Provo, but i feel like I'm getting a little preview. Right now I've had to blow on my hands a few times because they´re so cold! I mean, I'm in short sleeves, but it's still cold for Peruvian standards. Today we went to a crazy cool zoo in the mountains and it hailed! And i actually saw a wild herd of Llamas by the side of the road on the way there, there were at least 200 of them! I was so excited! Cajamarca is what i always hoped Perú would be like. Not that Chiclayo isn't the best, it´s just different.
The amazing experiences continue. My testimony is being strengthened in so many ways recently. After a few rough weeks it's easy to start to wonder if God really is preparing people for us, or if we're worthy to listen to the spirit and find them. Yesterday we had another of those experiences. We were walking to an appointment with a guy we had contacted Saturday night, and a car pulls up beside us. The man asked us if we had some kind of authority or power to pray for sick people, because his little daughter who was there in his wife´s arms, is really sick. I was caught off guard, but finally we said yes, and he said well, get in the car and we'll go to my house. We hopped in, and talking in the car we realized they're amazing people and that their daughter has a very rare hereditary disease that completely wipes out a protein needed in nerve conduction. So, their little 3 year old daughter can hear and understand everything, but can't move her body at all. She's been like that for a year. And the doctors say there's no cure and that she has a few months more to live. Obviously, they're so devastated and desperate for any help and wondering if God really exists. We took advantage and shared some of the Gospel with them and talked about the authority we have to give blessings and where it comes from. They were very interested, and we ended by giving their daughter a blessing of health. I hope and have faith that she can improve. But they don't live in our area, so we'll have to pass their info to the zone leaders, it's in their area. They were so grateful and such good people, and they just happened to be right where they could find us... God knows us so well, and really makes miracles happen when we're trying our hardest and focusing on the work. I love it! And I'm realizing bit by bit why i had to extend my mission. Certain things that are happening right now, people that the Lord is preparing, i feel so grateful. I honestly can't ever pay Him back for these experiences.
We are going to baptize a family of 3 this week. Genaro is the dad, Sonia is the mom, and Baruc is their 8 year old son. They were evangelical, but feel something different and special in the Church. They've gone to church a bunch of times, but this week we could finally teach them and resolve some doubts they had and they accepted to be baptized the 19th!
I'm so happy, having such a great time, and wishing the days wouldn't go by so fast. I love being a missionary!
I love you family, thanks for your support and prayers!