*Elder Hatch returns home from his mission the last week of February and he will report on his mission on March 10th. More details will be posted as it gets closer.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Hey Everyone!


I've been meaning to write and thank you for the awesome cards you all sent me for my birthday, but life has been crazy lately and i didn't get a p-day last week! But thank you so much for being an amazing sister, and for all the love and support you continue to give me. You are an awesome example to me of how to always look for missionary opportunities, even in Provo, Utah. Keep up the awesome work :) 

This week was a classic missionary week, full of ups and downs.. 

After being sick on monday and a little bit of tuesday, i felt great. We went to a zone meeting in the Latina zone, where i was zone leader before being in the office, and where i started my mission. Whenever i go into that stake center so many memories come flooding back to me! It's so much fun being able to go so many places, and i feel like i'm really getting to know chiclayo and the whole mission. Oh, i forgot to tell you, President Risso basically told me where my last area is going to be in my mission a few days ago.  So i know, but i'm going to keep it a secret so it will be more intense for you everyone else :) But i'm excited, it'll be a new and interesting experience for me. And yes, it's basically set that i'll be here in the office until the beginning of january and i'll pass the last month and a half in the field as a normal missionary. 

With my new companion, Elder Infante, things are still going great. This morning he made me banana milk  and macaroni and cheese for breakfast (mondays we don't go to our pensionista for breakfast, and food supplies were a little scarce) but it was really good. And he always cleans our room. I've turned into a very clean, organized person on my mission, but he takes it to a new level. I make my bed in the morning after i pray and when i come out of the shower it's made better, and all my things on our desk are organized.. haha it's awesome. but at the same time it makes me feel bad and want to serve him more, too! 

Elder Chuiz is in a place like ten minutes from chiclayo called Ciudad de Dios. It's really ghetto and has no plumbing in the whole town! He finishes in a month.
We had a few really good lessons this week, but after all it turned out stinky. We have been working on and off with an inactive member who everyone calls Papo. I don't know what his real name is.. But he's like 40. We had a great lesson and the spirit was really strong. He decided to go to church this week, and i made him write it down so it would be in writing, set and unchangable. We had basically the same experience with another inactive family we're teaching, the Couyate family. Sunday morning we passed by their houses to pick them up... In Papo's house they were decorating for a catholic holiday dedicated to an idol.. (they're all members in that house) and Papo wasn't there. And in the Couyate's house the dad came to the door drunk :( ah, it was rough. And the families we're teaching didn't go either. BUT, sunday afternoon was one of the high points of my whole mission. Anthony, the 20 year old guy elder chuiz and i baptized a few months ago, is doing so well! He got the Melchizidek Priesthood last week, and is an Elder now, and an assistant to the ward mission leader! We had an activity with the elders' quorum in the afternoon to go out and visit all the less active members. Only the quorum president and anthony showed up, so Elder Infante and i divided up and went out with them. I went with Anthony- he looks so awesome in his white shirt and tie- we saw a bunch of members while we were visiting and everyone called him elder until they realized it was anthony and not a normal missionary. When we were teaching a less active member it honestly felt like having a normal companion. he's so chosen to have found the church and changed his life. Everone's already bugging him about going on a mission, but he's only been a member for like 2 months! After the visits was ward council, anthony was there too, and volunteered to pick up a less active member every week to go to church. Then we had ward mission correlation- he directed the meeting like a champ. I feel like i know a little better how parents feel when their kids do something really good! I was just so happy and couldn't stop smiling! 

We were visiting a companionship in a little pueblito called Mórrope, like 40 minutes from here. 

I was with Elder Cordero, from Chile. We were teaching a guy who really wants to get baptized but his wife doesn't want to marry him, she just wants to live together.. The whole time an annoying cricket/grasshopper was flying around the room and landing on us and being obnoxious. At one point it landed on my lap and then we couldn't find it for a few seconds, but kept on teaching. I guess another one came into the room at that point, because one was still flying around (at this point we supposed it was still grasshopper #1) but like ten minutes later my back starts itching so i go to scratch it and the grashopper was inside my shirt and walking up my back! We had to put the lesson on pause for a few seconds while Elder Cordero helped me get it out. 

Knocking doors we got into a house of super Evangeligal people. We talked to (and tried to teach) the mom about the church Christ organized, but it just turned into her telling us about her crazy spiritual experiences. She supposedly died and went to the spirit world where, among many other things, she saw babies suffering in chains because their parents created them in sin.. haha it was interesting to listen to her, because she wouldn't let us talk! 

This week president Risso is going to Quito, Ecuador for an area conference, so he asked Elder infante and i to take over a meeting for him. we're going to teach for an hour to a group of 70 future missionaries here in chiclayo about how to prepare for the mission- that should be fun! 

I think that's all the news for now. I'm doing great and hope everyone has a great week!

Elder Hatch

This is guinea pig with rice and potatoes! YUMMY!


This statue of Christ is in one of the most dangerous parts of Chiclayo, Cruz de la Esperanza (the cross of hope). The name is a little ironic. 


Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Hey Family,

Yay i'm glad mom and dad got my package! Sorry it was late.. but it's the thought that counts. I hope the sweater fits mom, i'm not the best at sizing things.

Yeah, so i thought the date was February 16th, but it's actually the 18th and i'll be getting home on Tuesday, the 19th. A few more days to wait haha. It'll be almost 25 months. And yes, it's because that's the day that transfers happen. my ending date from the Piura mission would have been the 30th of January, but because of the difference in the transfer schedule here in Chiclayo i could choose between the 7th of January and the 18th of February.

Mom asked about if i've been in any little church branches. My actual areas where i've been assigned have all been wards with a lot of members, but in the mission there are tiny little family groups where like ten people attend. I have only been in the sunday meetings of one of those once! In a little place called Pedro Ruiz, like 8 hours from Chiclayo.

This week was transfers! My companion, Elder Chuiz, is in another area and my new companion is Elder Infante, a pretty big boy from the south of Perú. But his family moved to Chiclayo a few months ago! They live like ten minutes from here, it's pretty funny. He's the man, and sometimes i feel like he's a mom. He is always cleaning and he loves to cook (he cooks really well). He'll be a great companion.

After transfers it was supposed to be a normal week without any special meetings or anything for us, but on Wednesday President Risso told us that Elder Torres, of one of the quorums of the 70, had invited him to the stake conference of Cajamarca, one of the far away stakes here in the mission. So, Pres Risso decided to go and invited us to go along, too. It was a win-lose though because we're teaching a few awesome families and we couldn't take them to the stake conference that was happening in our own stake here in chiclayo. We invited them to go alone, but i'm not sure if they went. Today at night we'll see when we go visit them. But Saturday morning we went with pres and sister Risso to Cajamarca. In the afternoon we worked with a companionship of missionaries in the Chontapaccha ward. It is raining every day in Cajamarca lately, and i LOVED being there! I got to use my rain jacket for the second time ever. Sunday morning was the stake conference and i really enjoyed the talk of Elder Torres, the 70 who was there. One thing he said is that in our lives we simply don't have time to sin. We don't have time to waste on needless entertainment either. There is so much good we have to do, and I believe that the people who make it to exaltation will be those who are always anxiously engaged in a good cause. For example, we can use a whole afternoon watching TV, or we can do the Lord's work indexing, or spending time talking to our families and doing good for others. Another thing i understood while he was talking was about condemnation. All condemnation is is a limitation of opportunities. When we choose to sin we are in a way condemned because we don't have all the opportunities we would have otherwise, and it would be so sad to have our opportunities limited forever! That's why we have to repent now and live exactly how God demands so that we can have unlimited opportunities for eternity. That afternoon we went to a little town a few miles away from Cajamarca called Jesus. Not a bad name for a town. We were thinking of putting a companionship of missionaries there, but there aren't any members there so it would be really hard to start from zero. We finished off the day with the Sunday night reports which was a struggle, because the cell phone reception in Cajamarca isn't very good. Monday morning we went to a cool really old farm slash tourist attraction with Pres and Sister Risso called La Colpa. For lunch i ate Chinese food at a food court in a mall there in Cajamarca, and we made the journey back to Chiclayo. I slept for like the first four hours, and when i woke up my stomach was going crazy. I started feeling all gross, so i had to stop off to go to a bathroom in a pharmacy in a little town and i bought some peptoish stuff then i started getting worse and sweating, and i thought i was going to barf but through some serious prayer i made it to the house. Pres and sister Risso dropped us off and i literally ran up the stairs, tossed my bags on the table and barely made it to the bathroom to throw up. The second week in a row?! I'm sick of food poisoning. Today i'm fine though. And Elder Infante took good care of me last night. He even wrapped my feet up in an extra blanket because my feet were really cold and i was shivering and he made me some herbal tea.

Right now i'm just excited to get out and work like normal in my area! There are so many good people waiting to be found and taught the gospel. It's amazing how God is preparing people daily all throughout the world to be able to accept the gospel. He knows us so well and His plan for us is perfect. The coolest part of being assistant is being able to work with and get to know so many missionaries. I'm so grateful for all the awesome missionaries who give their best every day trying to help others have joy through the Atonement of Christ. This is His work and His Church. I know that true happiness comes through the choices we make to draw nearer to God.

I love you!

Elder Hatch

My Peruvian girlfriend Smile


President and Sister Risso at La Colpa


Overlooking a bit of the valley by Cajamarca. It's so pretty there!


This is Elder Infante with a little calf at La Colpa.


Monday, October 15, 2012


First of all, thanks so much for the packages!! They are so great. I gave the cake to make to my pensionista and she made it for me friday, because saturday we don't eat with the pensionista. i got to choose my lunch too, and i asked for tacos, yum :) Yeah so i'll tell the story of my birthday. It all starts about two weeks ago. Here in Perú there is an awful tradition of breaking eggs over the head of the person on their birthday. It's brutal, like in the streets you'll see school kids just go and attack one person with tons of eggs! The first time it scared me, but now it's normal. So, two weeks ago Elder Chero, another missionary here in the office, had his birthday. Everyone was planning to throw eggs at him, but i don't like the idea, so i didn't participate. Even so, ever since then, everyone has been conspiring against me and telling me every five minutes how i'm going to get egged. I always told them that i was going to let them do it in our apartment and then just go shower. So, the moment arrives. It was the night of my birthday at like 11 at night and i went and stripped down to just my shorts and stood in the middle of our patio and said "do what you have to do" They had bought 18 eggs (they were on sale) and were all waiting for me to come out and put up a fight, but when they saw me all vulnerable and cold standing there, they couldn't do it. They were indecisive for a while, but after a little while i said if you're going to do it do it, because i'm tired and i want to sleep. So i went and got ready for bed and while i was going into my room it turned into a brawl between three of them. I learned an important lesson from the experience. If i would have given them what they wanted we would have all ended up eggy, but because i made myself look vulnerable and made them feel bad for their wicked secret combinations, i was saved :) haha. So starting from the morning. I got to the pension for breakfast and they gave me a muffin with a firework in it and happy birthday was playing on the computer, it was fun. And after we went to the office as usual, studied, and supposedly we were going to go to a stake young single adult activity and teach them how to participate in missionary work at 11. We got there at 11 and it was actually at 10, so we felt great about that.. But luckily the activity was in our church so we were in our area and just went to work! We taught some great lessons and in the afternoon found a new family! I'm pretty sure the parents need to get married, but they want to go to church and are a sweet family. At 8 at night we went to Los Incas to my old house! Hermana Graciela invited me to go there for my birthday, and made me banana pancakes. Blanca and her kids were there, a woman i baptized, and she gave me cologne as a gift! (i guess i smell bad) But that was really nice and we had a great time until 9 at night, then we hustled to the mission home where we had another dinner with the office and president and sister Risso. We ate chivitos, a uruguayan sandwich that's like a hamburger but with a steak inside. And of course all day i was eating cake. It was a great birthday. My pensionista right now, Hermana Yataco, gave me a soccer jersey of a team from Lima, and a really nice card. It was all around a great birthday.
 The storm came the day after.. on Sunday (for younger readers, this part gets graphic) For lunch we ate at a member's house. We ate turkey and rice, it was yummy, then after she gave me some homemade yogurt. All afternoon i was fine, then at night we had to receive reports from all the zone leaders. My stomach started hurting really bad, and i ended up going to lay down on a couch here in the office and fell asleep. Elder Chuiz finished off the reports and when he was done he woke me up, and i felt even worse... then, for the first time on my mission, i threw up. at least i made it over a year and a half. But then i felt a lot better, we went to our apartment, and i fell asleep. The night was rough though, i threw up a few more times and it was just stinky. But this morning i'm doing a lot better. I think it was the yogurt that killed me. 
That's the story of my week. other than that, not too much exciting happened. We did a training meeting for the new missionaries who are in their first 12 weeks and their trainers- it went great. And we visited a companionship here in chiclayo in their area to work with them. 
Now the exciting part. I left it for last.. The decision. I am officially going home february 16th. (i think i'll actually get home the 17th). I would explain why, but i don't exactly know why. After a lot of praying and thinking through it, i just feel better about it. So, i'll be here another four months :) I love this work and know it's all true. 
Love you! 
Elder Hatch 

Monday, October 8, 2012


This conference was nuts! The office crew decided to watch it here in the office Saturday morning on the Internet. The Latinos, Elders Chuiz, Perea, Chero, and Samame watched it in Spanish while Elder Hemsley and I watched it in English. Even though i understand everything in Spanish it's still way better in English with their real voices. Right at the start when President Monson announced the new temple in Arequipa we were all so happy! Arequipa is way down south in Perú, so nobody here is really that excited, because they´re all still waiting for the Trujillo temple to be built which is only 3 hours away! The Lima temple is about 12 hours south and Arequipa, the third temple in Perú, will be like 20 hours away. But that's awesome because the members in Perú really need temples close because they don't have much money to travel very far.  Then when he started talking about missionary work and saying that in some countries missionaries have been going out at 18 i knew he was going to say it was for everywhere now, but when he said it it still shocked me! Elder Hemsley and I started dancing and yelling, and the Latino elders were confused because their conference was a little bit behind, so we just told them to wait and when they heard it they freaked out too. Then when he started talking about the sisters our Internet started lagging, it made the moment SO intense! We were yelling at the computer and finally it worked and when he said they can go at 19 it blew my mind!!! It was definitely my most exciting general conference moment to date. I feel like way more sister missionaries will go now, and that's so great because honestly sister missionaries work harder than the majority of the Elders.. After the morning session ended i watched that part two more times. 

Saturday night for priesthood and Sunday we went to the chapel of Los Incas, where i served like a year ago, because they're remodeling our stake center, and that is the chapel where the whole stake went to see it. In other words, i got to see A TON of old friends from Los Incas and Los Amautas (I've served in 3 wards in this stake, i feel like i know everyone!) And it was so great to see Cesar, Stefany and Blanca there too, three people i got to baptize! I talked with them, Blanca is still having problems with her husband who doesn't like that she goes to church... But she's reading her scriptures all the time and is super faithful in the church! 

Wednesday was zone leaders council and we talked about how to work better with less active members and how to be "ductile" missionaries. From doing splits with lots of missionaries I've learned that they basically teach the same lessons over and over again. Supposedly we should find the person's needs, satisfy their needs with the Gospel, etc, and be able to adapt and change what we teach. But most missionaries just sit down and teach the lessons, using the same scriptures every time.. I was with a missionary this week and we got into a lady's house knocking doors. the lady told us she only had 10 minutes, and the missionary i was with whispered to me "wow, how am i going to teach the whole plan of salvation in 10 minutes?" i was thinking nooooooooooooooooooooooo!! That's a great example of not being ductile, or flexible, with what we teach.  So we're working on that with the mission. After the meeting with the zone leaders we went to a Chinese restaurant and i totally ate a full plate of rice with squid, sea snails, shrimp, and something else chewy. :) I liked it but it didn't fill me up. I think i have an iron stomach as a missionary because no matter what i eat it's always just happy and working great. What a blessing! 

Great moments from this week:

So, in our area we have very, very few investigators. It doesn't help that when we finally get somebody who's interested we have to go out of town so we leave them with the sister missionaries to teach while we're gone and when we come back we don't want to take them away from the sister missionaries.. so we end up with nobody. But anyway, we were kind of bummed one day and were knocking doors without success, and a young man comes to the door and told us he was busy but that he seriously wants us to come back and visit him. We set an appointment for Saturday between the afternoon and priesthood session to visit him. We got there and he was actually there waiting for us and let us in (a very rare occurrence). We got to know him a bit and i felt to tell him to invite his parents to listen to us too. After 3 months of basically everyone always telling us they're busy, it's hard to keep the faith up sometimes, so when he came back in with both of his parents we were very surprised and excited to have found a family! We had a great lesson and have another appointment with them in a few days. 

We also did a ward talent show and with the missionaries from the ward we did a sketch where a doctor (elder chuiz) made a machine to cure everyone's sicknesses. i was the doctor's mute and weird assistant who had to enter the machine with the people when they came into his office, and when the people came out of the machine healed i came out with whatever they had before. I ended up blind, with a hurt leg, and without an arm, and the sketch ended when a pregnant lady came in and i went running away. Everyone loved it! 

i was working with a district leader in his area, knocking doors, and when a lady told him she was busy he said "so am i, but can we come in and teach you about Jesus?" It was great, i started laughing :) 

Oh, and I got the papes in the mail telling me that the packages are in customs here in chiclayo and i have to go pick them up but i can't today because it's a holiday and everything is closed, but i'll go get them tomorrow probably, i'm excited!!!!
Thanks for the happy birthdays and all the love :) 

Elder Hatch

Monday, October 1, 2012


That was so awesome to see the videos of mom's birthday! All the kids look so old and mom looks so young! Seriously, i see women here that are way younger and look much older. And the cake was nuts! I'm sure Kristen made it. Sister Risso made some cupcakes that were decorated really pretty with flowers on them and it made me remember all of Kristen's beautiful cakes! I hope everything went great and that you enjoyed your birthday, Mom :) 

This week i felt more like a tourist than a missionary. I barely even got to do normal missionary work.. but that's kind of my life lately. Tuesday and Wednesday we were in the office all day downloading videos off the internet for a DVD we're making for all the missionaries in the mission with mormon messages, "i'm a mormon" videos, and bible videos to use for their investigators. It takes so long sometimes for them to download and then they would be messed up or randomly in english, and i had to figure out how to make a dvd menu and i got it all done then after all the program had a virus or something and it all crashed and we ended up paying our pensionista's husband to do it. So all week while we were in Jaen and Chachapoyas the office crew here was here in chiclayo burning dvds, and now they're all ready to give to the zone leaders in the Zone Council this Wednesday! On Thursday morning we headed out to Jaen, aka more great 70s music and I slept most of the way in the car. We got there in the afternoon and i went out with the zone leaders in a trio to work for the afternoon. I realized that i have only worked in a trio two or three times in my whole mission, and it was weird.. But at the end of the day we taught an awesome lesson to a teenage guy. The spirit was amazing when we taught him the Restoration and i felt my testimony being strengthened and confirmed in those moments while i was sharing my testimony with him. Before my mission i had always heard that your testimony grows when you share it, but when i shared it in sacrament meeting all i felt was nervous.. Now i understand what an amazing experience it is to connect with a person and have the spirit teach you both in that moment that what you're saying is true. He accepted to be baptized, and after the lesson all four of us knelt down to pray and he asked to know if what we had taught him was true, and after the prayer he told us he felt that it's all true and that he needs to be baptized! I wish it was always that simple! Some people take months or years to be able to feel an answer that clearly and make their decision. But honestly, i have been so blessed to see the field white all ready to harvest. God truly is preparing the hearts of people all over the world to accept the Gospel. 

I also got to interview a lady in Jaen who's super ready to be baptized- the missionaries have been teaching her for four months, and they finally got all the papers set so they can be married and baptized a few days later! 

Friday morning elder Chuiz and i put on a leadership training meeting in Jaen for the district and zone leaders, it was the third time we did it. I don't know how teachers can teach the same thing all day every day. When i repeat the same thing even twice i get bored! I don't think a teaching career is for me. That afternoon i worked with Elder Cabrera from Bolivia in the Laureles ward. We taught some people who are kind of eternal investigators who don't want to go to church and are just too lazy to do anything, so i tried to pump them up and get them to commit to go to church, but no luck- they just kept coming up with new excuses. It's funny/sad when at first the people tell you one thing like, oh i can't go because my mom is sick.. then later you invite them again and they say, no, because i have to go to the market and then cook for my kids..No wait, i have to go out of town! if you're going to make up an excuse you have to choose one and go with it! But at least we taught a guy with an amazing neck beard that was two-toned and a hitler mustache. I respected him for that and because he accepted the word of wisdom. He doesn't want anything to do with going to church or praying though. 

Saturday we went to Bagua Chica and president interviewed the missionaries there, then on to Chachapoyas. Recently the mission took over the Chachapoyas branch, because the leadership there was terrible. So now, the four missionaries there are branch president, first counselor, secretary, and elders quorum pres. Ever since the missionaries have been in charge things have gone way better there in the branch. We got there just in time to set up for the relief society broadcast (internet is amazing!) and i even got to watch the new president's talk while Pres. Risso was interviewing Elder Navas, then he and i went out to work for the night. We knocked on one door and got in to teach the lady a lesson- turns out she's the mayor's wife! I hope she can progress! Sunday we went to their meetings there in the branch (they meet in basically a garage) and i played the little electric organ for all the hymns. It was a first for them in Chachapoyas, because they have the organ but nobody knows how to play! Needless to say the kids were mesmerized. After the meetings there we went to the Sunday meetings of another little family group where there is one companionship of missionaries in a place called Pedro Ruiz, like an hour from Chachapoyas. It's so cool to see faithful members of the church in little remote places, fulfilling their callings and raising Christ-centered families. A little 7 year old girl gave the opening prayer in sacrament meeting, and it was the best prayer from a little kid i think I've ever heard! Anyway, by that time it was five in the afternoon, so we trekked 2 hours back to Jaen where Elder Chuiz and i received all the weekly reports from the zone leaders. This week we had about 40 baptisms! That's the most the mission has ever had in one week! And it put us at 136 for the month, the mission's best month EVER! We slept there in Jaen last night, and this morning made our way back to Chiclayo. The road id kind of dangerous with big mountains and cliffs.. and when we were driving along we see a huge group of people on the side of the road and emergency crews.. When we drove by and made a loop down the road we saw that a huge tour bus had flown off the road off a really steep part of the mountain. It made me sick to my stomach. They were trying to rescue people with a rope pulling them up the mountain from the ravine where the bus had gotten stuck. Down the road at a toll booth they told us that like 30 people had died. how sad :(  But pres Risso always is really careful driving, so don't worry. 

Now i'm back in Chiclayo and this week we have the zone leaders meeting, so these next days we'll be preparing that, and the rest of the week will probably be crazy, too! 

Oh, the sister missionary from last week is doing much better. For precautions we moved here to an area here in Chiclayo where she can get more tests and stuff done, so her companion in Cajamarca is with a mini missionary for the meantime. 

Hope you have a great week! 

Love, Elder Hatch

Here is my new friend, an awesome monkey eating a candy some kid gave him


Here we are in the central square of Chachapoyas!