Friday, November 26, 2010


Dear Family,
I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!!!  I missed you all and thought a lot about you.  It was different having a Thanksgiving without family around.  It was really good though.  But I'm gonna go through my week chronologically...
Monday was a terrible day...  Nothing was going very good and we could all tell.  Then, one of the Elders in our district announced that he was going home.  It was really a shocker.  So Monday just kinda sucked.  He was one of our zone leaders and it was super unexpected.  As a result of our zone leader going home, Elder Richens and I were chosen to be zone leaders with the other remaining zone leader.  So now I'm a zone leader and I'm in a trio companionship.  Trio companionships pretty much suck.
Tuesday was relatively uneventful except for the devotional.  I did give the Opening Prayer in the Devotional though.  But it wasn't an Apostle.  They pretty much shut down the MTC when they heard that a big snow storm was coming.  So we all think that is why they didn't send an Apostle.  But it was Elder Malm of the 2nd Quorum of the Seventy.  It was really awesome and I learned a lot.  Oh and giving the prayer was sort of scary but not really.
Oh the storm...  They announced that it was gonna be the biggest storm in 11 years.  We got about 1/4 inch...   But they cancelled all our classes and so we got to study all day.
Wednesday was a great day.  But when it started,  I was super tired and I was kind of wishing I was with you all for Thanksgiving.  And I didn't want to do anything because I wasn't super motivated.  And we didn't have class til the evening.  This went on for a while until about lunchtime.  Our district leader, Elder Shelley, walked in holding a bunch of papers...  These papers were our flight plans!!!!!!!!!   It changed the day and we were all super happy and excited for the rest of the day.  We still couldn't focus though.
So, I leave the MTC on December 6, at 5:00 AM and head to the airport for our flight at 8:30.  We fly to Atlanta and have a layover there.  We fly to Bogota after that.  We stay in Bogota overnight!  Then at 7:00 AM we fly to Cali!!!  I'm so excited!!!!!!!!!!!
I will write more about that in my letter today.
Yesterday was really a good day.  We had a Morning Devotional at 10:00.  Elder Holland came!!!!!!  It was by far the best Devotional i've ever been to.  The spirit was way strong and I learned a ton.  His whole family was there and it was awesome.  Then we had dinner.  Nothing special.  Then we had 2 more Devotionals and a Service project and then another devotional and then we went to bed.
It was an awesome week.  I miss you all and I love you all!!!  I hope you all had a great Thanksgiving!!!  Eat leftovers for me!
Con amor,

Friday, November 19, 2010


Dear Family,
This week was really good!  We are starting to realize that we are almost done here at the MTC.  In 1 week from today, we should get our flightplans.  It is super wierd.  It seems like I just got here.  I'm having a lot of fun and I really like my district and my zone. 
On Monday, the Elders in my zone who are going to Mexico are leaving.  They have been here for 12 weeks now so it is kind of a big deal around here.  But right after they leave, that makes my district the oldest.  It also means that we are the next to leave.  We are all super excited to go.  I can't wait.  I usually spend a lot of my free time thinking about Colombia.  Not that I really have any free time.  The only free time I have is when I am in the bathroom, shower, or in bed.  And the food enables us to have plenty of bathroom time...
So we didn't have an Apostle this week...  It was Elder Pearson of the Seventy.  It was really good.  It was about how we, as missionaries, need to leave behind who we were and become who the Lord needs us to be.  It was really cool.   So speaking of the devotionals... I have been assigned to give the opening prayer at the devotional on Tuesday.  It is the Thanksgiving devotional.   That means that it will most likely be an Apostle.  I'm excited to do it but kind of nervous.  It will be broadcasted to all the MTCs in the world.  But if I'm lucky, I'll meet an Apostle.  I get to sit on the stand during the devotional so chances are good.
Spanish is going well.  We are speaking it a lot and we are all learning it really well.  We started learning subjunctive this week, which is pretty much the last new thing we learn before we leave.  So that's pretty exciting.
So Mom and Dad, I can't believe I forgot to tell you HAPPY ANNIVERSARY!!!!!!!!!!!! I hope you had a good day! 
This week, we taught a bunch of lessons.  We are getting fairly capable of teaching in Spanish.  It is super fun especially when you are saying things you don't understand.  It is super cool.  We are teaching again tonight so I'm pretty excited.
I've loved getting all of your letters.  I miss you all and hope you have a great Thanksgiving!  I'll be thinking of you.  Don't forget to make a video so I can watch it at the airport when I leave.  And Katie, I would make a video of myself speaking Spanish, but I can't because it is against the rules.  I'm going to send a card home with pictures on it soon.  Probably next week. 
Well thanks for all your love and support!  I love you all!  Have the best Thanksgiving ever!!!!!
Con amor,
 p.s. mom i will answer those questions in my letter to you.

Friday, November 12, 2010


Dear Family,
     This week has flown by.  It is crazy how fast time is going.  It seriously seems like last P-day was yesterday. 
     So this week has been good.  We had a really good Sunday, super spiritual and everything.  One of the districts left though so that was kind of weird.  I became good friends with some of them so it was kind of hard.  Oh and on Monday, another district is leaving for Paraguay and Argentina.  I'm good friends with lots of them now too.  But with them gone, that means that we are the oldest district in our zone.  And that means that in like 3 weeks, we leave.  So I'm starting to get really excited.  
     We started teaching in Spanish this week.  It is so cool.  It's hard but I have fun doing it.  It is really cool when you start saying words that you have never heard.  I would have never guessed I could do it.   this whole week we have just taught other investigators as practice.  Tonight, we have a real pretend "investigator."  We go to the TRC and teach all of Lesson 1, which is the restoration.  It will be hard but I'm kind of excited. 
     So learning spanish is going well.  Yesterday, my companion and I went the whole day without speaking English.  It was super hard and frustrating.  It was just a goal that we wanted to do.  We are the first ones in our district to do it so its pretty cool.   Apparently, my district's spanish is really good.  The older districts have told us that our spanish is as good as the missionaries who are leaving. (If that makes sense)  Also they said that the district who had our teachers before we did, we really good too.  so i'm excited to see how good we are.  It is really frustrating though.  Our teachers don't speak English anymore, at all.  I'm finally starting to be able to express myself a little bit so i'm pretty proud of that.
     So the best part of the whole week... was when Elder Bednar came to our fireside!!!   It was super cool.  He talked about doctrine and how the answer is always in the doctrine.  It got pretty deep...  but it was so cool.  In case you aren't keeping count, that is our 4th Apostle.  there is a rumor floating around the MTC that they are having Apostles come all through November.  Elder Holland might come for Thanksgiving.  But who knows,  the rumors floating around here are crazy.
     Also, on Sunday night, Sherri Dew came and spoke to us. It was really good too.  After that we watched the Joseph Smith movie again.  I love that movie so much.  
     So we haven't heard much about our visas.  But we have heard that no one has really had problems with them.  It looks like they are going to be here on time.  Only missionaries going to Mexico and Brazil are having problems.   My friend Chad Zollinger is still here for his 11th or 12th week.  But we have been told not to worry about it.
     one of our teachers is engaged to a Colombian.  He said that there is warm water on the western side of Colombia for showers.  (but thats just cause nothing has a chance to get cold down there...)  He also speculates that we (the ones going to Cali) will likely spend time in the Jungle.  I'm so excited to go.
    Well I'm out of things to say.  That is literally all we did all week long.  everyday is the same here.  Don't worry I'm still having fun, but i really do want to leave.
    I hope everything is going well at home! 
         Love you all, 
P.S. I told Katie about doing like a family video on an SD card to send to me so I can watch it at the Airport.  So do that! please.

Friday, November 5, 2010


Dear Family,
     So this week has been really great!  We had another Apostle come!!  Elder Ballard came and spoke to us.  It was really cool.  I love hearing from the Apostles.  Hopefully they keep coming.  I heard a rumor that for Thanksgiving, they try and get Elder Holland to come.  I love his talks... they are frightening...
     I've been here for a month!! It is really weird to think about. I feel like I've been here forever, but its gone so fast.  That probably doesn't make sense.  The days are long but the weeks are short.  I literally feel like yesterday was my first Sunday here.  It's really weird for me to think that in 1 month I'll be in Colombia.  
    So I haven't really heard anything about my visa except that like the 2nd week we were here, we signed another paper from the Colombian gov't and sent it back. So I think that might be a good sign.  At least I hope it's a good sign.  But I haven't heard anything about the Colombian visas.  There are lots of Elders going to Mexico that are having difficulties.  2 missionaries we talked to have been here for 6 months because they don't have their visas.  They have already been to Phoenix and St. George and now they are back here waiting.  So I guess I'm really lucky I'm not going to Mexico. 
     Spanish is going well.  I am recently able to have a conversation with someone only in Spanish.  It's really weird because I have tried to make it so I'm not translating everything from english to spanish and spanish to english, so that I am thinking in Spanish.  It is pretty hard but I think it is working.  But it is really cool to be able to do that.  we started to practice teaching in Spanish.  That is way hard.  But it is really cool because things start coming out of my mouth and I don't really know what I said.  Next week we teach an "investigator" solomente en espaƱol. 
     So something really funny/sad happened the other day.  There was an old lady walking out of the building we have class in, and so I held the door open for her.   She seemed a little frail and confused.  So when she got outside, she started saying things like, "Where am I?... What is this place?... What am I doing here?... How did I get here?..."  And then she wandered away...  (we saw someone help her, don't worry)
     So a lot of Elders in my zone are leaving within 2 weeks.  It's kind of sad becuase we are all pretty good friends now.  But that means that we are soon to be the oldest district in out zone.  That means that more than likely, one of our 3 companionships are going to be zone leaders soon.  We aren't so sure we want to do that...
     Well I'm out of things to say...  I love you all so much!  I hope you are all doing ok out in the pretend world of pretendness that doesn't exist...
       Con amor,
P.S.  yes you can all call me Corey if you want.
P.P.S.  Someone asked me my first name the other day and it was kind of hard to remember.
P.P.P.S  yes I am getting the Dear Elders.  So send more!
P.P.P.P.S  I'm not sure if I did the P.S. thing right, but I don't care.