Monday, December 9, 2013

Dec. 9, 2013

Dear Pops,

Yeah I'm still sticking around here in montevideo, being district leader is driving me insane lately, there's a couple elders that aren't getting along in my district and it's killing the spirit and killing everyone's morale. I am tired. But I still enjoy the peace that comes from putting in a lot of effort I guess. But sometimes that's just not enough. As I've said before, sometimes I really hate agency.

In other news, yeah I'm also starting to go a little crazy just from lack of change, but it's not too bad, just enough to make things interesting.

I thank you all for your prayers and stuff, sorry for the lack of news, I seriously have no clue what to put today. All I did all week was try to learn to rebuke with sharpness, a somewhat new skill for me. Gotta be done though. I learned a lot about the purpose of missionaries in the plan of salvation, reading in jacob 5 and a talk by alvin r. dyer called For what purpose. It is pretty good. It inspires me and I try to shake off discouragement. I also enjoyed a lot of promises made to those who are in the work of the Lord in DyC. I've been studying it a lot lately. I really like the one in DyC 84:80.

Take care, love you a ton

Dec. 2, 2013

I feel out of touch, haha. Are you telling me I'm gonna have three married cousins when I get home...? Who is in charge of all this nonsense. I specifically told Kate to not get engaged a mere two weeks ago. Kids these days...

Yeah, we're having changes the week before Christmas, so that's gonna be really tough to coordinate the call, but we'll be able to do it, cause about half the mission will have the same problem, so there will be a solution.

We had a mixed emotions week. We had to work really hard for Alexis to get baptized, he's an awesome guy. He needed a special interview, and for some reason, the president assigned one of the senior missionaries who doesn't speak spanish to do the interview. This guy is about 75, served in Missouri however many years ago, and totally filled with the spirit. When the moment arrived for the interview, he asked me to come in and translate and proceeded to do the entire interview in spanish. I was starstruck. Or dumbstruck. But yeah, it wasn't super super great spanish, but he only asked for help like 5 times. It was a miracle. Really cool.

Yeah, they love christmas here, but it's not the same. It's a lot louder. It kinda makes me trunky. I miss quiet peaceful christmas with the family.

I love you guys a bunch, and am equally excited to see you on Christmas!


Nov. 25, 2013

Dear Dad,

Well, our people are having a rough time, living here in montevideo, it's hard for them to find time to receive us. The old lady brenda fell sick and couldn't make it to church on Sunday, but our boy Alexis made it to church after a birthday party on saturday night, no small feat in uruguay. They take birthdays really seriously, all birthday parties last at least eight hours, so when adults are involved and they have to start after work, they're up till like six in the morning. Alexis is a champ. He's getting baptized on Saturday.

I thought it was really interesting what you said about my spiritual gifts, because lately I feel like I've become psychic. I am a flippin mindbender. The other day we met a kid on the street and were teaching him a bit, and suddenly the spirit inserted a bit of knowledge in my mind, and suddenly I just asked him, "Who died in your family?" This kid was stunned, but he said his brother died, so we taught him about the plan of salvation. The mission has really been good for my psychic gifts, gracias a Dios.

I am really hungry just thinking about thanksgiving. Enough said.

Basically I'm just marching along, evrything is going fine. 

Love you all, enjoy your turkey, lest you someday find your self in a country where they don't eat it.

Monday, November 18, 2013

November 18, 2013

Dear Dad,

May I present the best week of my mission. I don't quite know what brought it on, it all started with a scripture. 1 Chronicles 28:20, it's kinda different in spanish. In english it says Be strong and of good courage. In spanish it says anímate y esfuérzate, which translates to something like, get happy and put forth an effort. So we did that. We had a lot of faith, worked hard all week, and then on saturday we found a sweet old lady named Brenda who was just sitting in her house with a broken ankle waiting to be baptized. She had already been taught everything but could never get baptized because her husband didn't want to get married. Her husband passed away, she stopped going to church, and eventually everyone forgot about her. She fell and broke her ankle, bought a little dog for companionship ( a chihuahua named willie) and sat back for a year. Then we showed up and slapped a baptismal date all over the situation. This was the very first day of my mission that I got all the daily goals, took long enough, but it's finally been done, haha. Also we found a mother and daughter that same day who were very interested. I was stunned, it was so miraculous. I didn't believe there could be a repeat. Sunday we found a family of four, also had been taught everything, all very intelligent, they have some girls about ellie and bekah's age, we hit it off super well. All complete miracles. My testimony about personally living the gospel grows yet again. When your personal commitment to follow the Savior is high, you will accomplish His purposes, whether that means baptize a bunch of people or become a convert yourself. I am too happy this week. I learned so much, and so much of it came from having a good attitude. We're gonna try to get a little more miraculous in the week to come.

How awesome about the activity. It's so weird to think that Ellie is in young women.

I am really excited for Christmas haha, hopefully it's better this time around. Have a good time, my dear family, I am so grateful for all your prayers and support. Hasta la vista, baby.


November 11, 2013

Thanks for the email mom, it is very exciting. I am a very big fan of what President Gardner said, it really is true. I really learned about learning on my mission. We had a super exciting week too, a lot of miracles that I think are the result of a good attitude and feeling the urgency of this work. Walked a bit faster, talked a bit differently to people, and we get two golden families referred to us by people, a recent convert gives us 8 referrals, it's the best. Really gave me a refresher. I kind of needed it, like I told you, I've only had two companions in the last 9 months, sometimes things start to feel kind of dead because there is not any change. Whatever, I know it's for a reason, God's plan is perfect, I've realized how much he took care of me while I was growing up. It's really quite astounding.  Thanks for the part you had in my crianza! Love you mom, see you at christmas!

Elder Pyper 

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Nov. 5, 2013

Dear Everyone,

We had an interesting week. A couple trials. I had my heart broken by a couple investigators. Also the changes came, and for the second time in a row, I am going to have a companion for three transfers. That is hard, no matter who your companion is. It's kind of interesting, I trust a lot in the lord, but sometimes I have no clue what he's thinking, haha.

I am starting to miss a lot of stuff. The top three however, are food, company, and music. Really no one can sing down here. Me and Elder Zuñiga did a musical number at our baptism last week, butchered it hard, and we made like half the congregation cry, haha. It's good and bad at the same time. I would enjoy chili right now as well.

So basically, the challenge of having a companion for so long is you get to know each other too well. It is a little difficult to see your companion as a representative of Jesus Christ when you know all his imperfections. So I'm gonna have to work extra hard to focus up. 

Something that might be interesting for you to know, dad, is that I used to hate numbers when I got here. I swore I would never count my baptisms, have a personal baptismal goal or anything like that. I've now seen that man grows only with his higher goals. I counseled with the Lord and together we set a goal for the amount of souls that I want to bring to his kingdom, and I know this is going to help me to grow to my maximum potential. If I want anything in my mission, I want to become a man who can set a goal, make a plan, and execute it, excercising faith, making adjustments to the plan, and accepting the will of the Lord. Honestly the part I need to work on is the diligence in planning. I like winging it too much. But there's something interesting I've learned out here.

Love you all, have a great week, I will talk to you again on Monday!

Oct. 28, 2013

Dear Family,

So we baptized the greatest convert ever last week. She overcame more opposition than anyone I've ever seen to get baptized. She is a wonderful old lady, she's almost blind, but can kind of see. It's a crazy story, which I don't even come close to having time to write. But I will write the whole story on paper and send a picture of it or something. But it was my first person that I baptized personally in more than six months, a really special experience for me. I'm trying to send a pic, we'll see if I can get it to work.

It was true, the last week was a little crazy. But we saw a bunch of miracles this week, including the coveted investigator that finds the missionaries. So we invited him to be baptized. He accepted.

I was totally thinking about that halibut the other day. I would love to go fishing, but dang Dad, I have a decision to make. I will get home on the 29th of august, i think. BYU starts the 2nd or 3rd of september. I'm not sure if I'm willing to make that turnaround so quick. Also, within the next three months, you guys need to decide if you want to come get me or not. They're gonna give me the trunky call soon. Well, not soon, but in three months. Just a heads up. 

I learned so much this week about the holy ghost. It is the power through which we are sanctified, and the power through which we keep our covenants. We can keep our covenants through no other power. Not even willpower. Ain't gonna do it. It kinda changed my perspective on keeping the spirit around. Sometimes I'm too funny for my own good and drive the spirit away. But perhaps I have to trade a good thing for a better thing.

Love you all, try to be like Jesus!
Elder Pyper

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Oct. 14, 2013

Dear Dad, 

My week was good. It was a really interesting week, actually, and I learned a lot. I think I figured out that I'm a natural optimist this week, because I went on an intercambio(haha I'm about halfway done with the letter right now, and I just looked back and realized I accidentally put a spanish word in there. It's a companion exchange) with an Elder in my district and we absolutely worked our minds off. It was great because we both realized we had actually been a little discouraged before we had that day together. It's very hard to work here in the city unless you have good companion support. This Elder is training, and I have somewhat of a timid comp, so we both suddenly realized how awesome it is to have two guys boldly declaring repentance. I later realized that I have been neglecting part of my responsibility. I got so caught up worrying about the areas in the district and the other elders that I forgot about my own companion. I went kind of panic mode and tried to save the whole district and my own area by myself, and the Lord made me realize what I should be doing is trusting my companion and helping him grow so he can run the area and I can worry about the district. Kinda complicated, but I'm gonna do it. You really gotta listen to the Lord on this kind of stuff.

My mind is continually blown by how awesome our stake is functioning, especially when I have to sit through two hours of ward council where not one assignment is given. Many assignments are talked about, hinted at, suggested, but the Ward is not gonna catch the wave until they commit to serve the Lord first. I am kinda pondering what to do about that, and I'm not sure.

Thanks for the pic, it's not too distracting, haha. I still am never coming home. I have too much left to do and become, and not enough time. 

I was memorizing scriptures too. It's really awesome, it helps keep your mind focused on the right things.

Everyone be good. Try asking a random stranger this week if they would be willing to listen to a message about your religion. That works. If they say yes get their name, number, address, and give it to the missionaries! I expect four emails from Mom, Dad, Ellie, and Bekah telling me how it went. Personal challenge from Elder Pyper.

Love you guys, have the best week!

Friday, October 11, 2013

October 7, 2013

Dear the rest of everybody,

Conference was amazing. I was a little disappointed at first because it wasn't set up in english when we got there, so we went and dropped cane on the stake president and set it up in english. So I missed the first session in english. The original language is always better. The talks by Giff Nielsen, M. Russell Ballard, Richard G. Scott, L. Tom Perry and of course President Monson were amazing. Those ones really got to me. The most recurring themes, it seemed to me, were patience in trial, member missionary work, and laboring for a personal conversion to draw spiritual strength. All things that we're going to need, and are already needing in these times when "men´s heart's shall fail them." Richard G. Scott's five steps to protect against satan's buffetings were truly inspired words. 

The ward is doing ok, I'm always kind of frustrated because they're a bunch of workoholics, and that honestly deadens the spirit. I'm in one of the few wealthy parts of Uruguay, it looks kind of like the east side of Enid. Just imagine that all the houses have flat roofs, are stuck together, and have bars on the windows and doors. The other month I was really upset with the ward leaders because they told me in my first ward council that they had had a wonderful idea. The idea was that the missionaries would plan and execute a ward activity. Maybe one of the only times in my life when strangers could visibly tell I was irritated with them, haha. We tried to go big and make an awesome activity, but we didn't succeed in that. We wanted the ward to do most of it, because if you have your missionaries doing everything, the church will never grow, but they kinda shirked. The people that came still had fun though, I love that about uruguayos, they're fun loving. We tried to make the olympic games, with a bunch of events and everything, but all the members just failed in their assignments haha, so we just played pingpong and futbol. I tactfully waited for one of the bishopric members to beat all the members at pingpong, and right at the moment when he was puffed up in his pride, I stepped up, took off my jacket, and won the heart of the ward, haha. Took him down. A straight year of not playing made me really rusty, but not rusty enough. And I got really good at that game where you put a cookie on your forehead and try to eat it without using your hands. Fun time.

I do feel like I've been a missionary my whole life, but I haven't been good enough still. Pray for me, friends. I know you do, and I appreciate it and love you all. 

1 peter 1

Love, Andy

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Sept. 30, 2013

Dear Family,

That sounds like a crazy week! It makes me miss byu a lot. HAPPY BIRTHDAY BEKAH! Eat lots of cake for me. And eat some all three ice cream. And a few bite sized bekahs in the morning.
The work is pretty dang awesome here. I'm feeling super optimistic and full of faith facing the upcoming week. I had a really good talk with my comp, he's an awesome guy, and he wants to become a leader really bad. I told him that he already is the senior comp in our area. That's not just some cliché thing that they tell the district leader comps, it really is a big responsibility to be the district leader's companion. Because there is just way too much going on in my head to run a district and my own area. Stuff was slipping between the cracks in my head, and our own area was suffering. He's feeling ready to go. Elder Francis is also a boss. He stepped into an area that was dying and found like twice as many new investigators as they ever did the last transfer. His comp is a really young kid from Ecuador, and they're getting along awesome as well. So I'm happy. It seems that we're getting a lot of blessings from the Lord here. Oh and another thing... Did you guys already buy shoes, because if you did that's fine, but if not hold off, cause elder francis just showed up selling a pair of shoes that are my size that should last me a good while. Let me know.
Seriously sounds like-holy gosh they just started playing sunglasses at night, haha-a really awesome weekend! Except for your truck. That's kinda sad. That story also made me realize how bad my english is, haha. What the heck do those words mean? I really don't speak english anymore, just spanglish. It's super hard to omit spanish words from my prose (viste esas palabras lujosas?)
Lately I've been learning a lot about how the very presence of the holy ghost in the life of a person literally changes his character. That person has mainly been me, haha. I'm really starting to rejoice in having the spirit with me all the time and do everything i can to not drive him away. I am super pumped for conference. Emilie said it's like super bowl weekend for missionaries, and I think that's the most apt comparison that can be made, haha. We get to hang out with all the missionaries in the stake, we kick out all the latinos and watch conference in english in a little room by ourselves. It is a blast, haha. Of the three general conferences i've seen in my mission, I've watched three of them with Elder Francis. It's fate. This guy is such an inspiration to me. He has turned from a lost kid seeking for approval into a driven servant of the most high God right before my eyes in one short year. I don't know what happened to him, but I hope something like that happened to me too.
I also am really liking listening to Byu devotional talks, I got a ton from some missionary buddies, and they are mind blowing. I think it is actually making my english a little more elegant. It's what happens when you listen to Hugh Nibley for at least an hour every day haha.
Have a wonderful week friends. Jacob 6:5-8
Elder "Sueño de la cañería" Pyper 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Sept. 24, 2013

Dear Family,

I'm staying with my comp another six weeks, that was a super fast change. I'm starting to feel robbed. My time is running away super quick. I am not happy about this, haha. I'm gonna try to send you guys a package next week that will have some uruguayan goodies and a flash drive with all my pictures so far, and I do not know how much that costs or anything, but I guess I'll find out. 

I am being very frustrated, because I seem to be trying as hard as I can to help these other areas in my district, and they are absolutely unresponsive. BUT. Elder Francis is coming to my district! That's right, my old friend from the MTC! So he is gonna shake things up, I imagine. 

It's gonna be weird. Pretty soon you're gonna have two double digit girls in the house. I still am denying that Ellie is twelve. I used to be twelve! As far as I know, she might turn sixteen or twenty someday! This is not good.

I hope you all get better and that the Lord gives you what you deserve :)
I pray for you guys every night, love you tons!


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

September 16, 2013

It's been raining for like a week straight :( We had a very instructional week. Also our poor investigator is trying to break my heart, and the bishop is driving me nuts. Poor alva had the hardest week ever. She prayed us to her door again. I have no clue how she does that, but she had kicked out her son and her daughter in law because the daughter in law was blatantly robbing them and taking advantage of living there. She is so sad because her son said a bunch of awful stuff. And then when we left their house the crazy daughter in law cornered us and told us a whole bunch of lies about alva and her husband, and asked me if I thought their behavior was appropriate for people who claim to be seeking god. I looked her in the eyes and told her that God is just, and that much I know. Then we walked off like a couple of bosses. But actually things got pretty crazy. She was so desperate to go to church that on sunday she walked there in pouring rain. And she's legally blind. ¡Que locura, che!

But yeah, this week I had a really cool moment, I got probably as discouraged as I ever get, mostly because we were just wandering around in the rain getting rejected. But then, I felt the reality of how many people are praying for me, I really felt it. Then we decided to be missionaries who work miracles, instead of missionaries who shamble around getting ignored by rich people. So we did some miracles. Still working with a long term drug addict. He's doing good.

Yeah, I actually would appreciate the other pair of shoes, if you're willing. I don't think my pair is gonna quite make it. And I'm good on pants.

Love you a ton!
Here's the picture from the baptism a couple of weeks ago.

September 9, 2013

Happy P-Day to all!
Happy anniversary as well! I realized today that I don't think I ever told you guys happy anniversary last year, so sorry. I bet that was a quick 21 years. Life is insane. I thought of the story of you getting mom pots and pans for christmas the other day. That made me laugh.
I actually had a really cool experience yesterday where one of our investigators with a really sick husband used her huge gigantic enormous faith, asked the Lord to send me and my comp to her house, sat down and told her husband, Bueno, vamos a esperarlos. And you guessed it, about that moment her face pops in my mind, we go over immediately, weep with them, and the whole time I was just feeling that they need to experience the power of God in their lives. We shared the story from alma 15 and gave the husband a priesthood blessing. I hope he gets better, cause that would make an awesome story. I love those dear viejitos so flippin much. I have really gained a testimony of this principle. The Lord loves his children.
You know, I've gone a whole year without a stake conference. I have been jumping areas right before stake conference every single time. But I like that. That just means I get to take the sacrament more, hahaha! I really can't express how important the sacrament has become to me. It is so essential. And fasting. A little trip through Isaiah 58 rocked my world.
But yeah, I love what it says about a succesful missionary in preach my gospel in chapter 1. I'm trying to do that stuff, and one thing that I feel I have learned out here is to recognize the spirit at least. Following is a little harder. We'll get there some day.
Elder Zuniga is going to teach me to be a yoyo master today. I hope this picture works, it's of Karen(in white), her nonmember family, and us.
Love you all a ton!

September 2, 2013

Hello all

I've been good this week. It's starting to become spring here in uruguay. It's super nice. Quite beautiful. We as well are feeling the Lord's blessings. We had my first baptism in this area last week, and next week I'll send the picture, because I forgot my camera cord today. It was quite miraculous though. Me esforcé por vivir el Evangelio a un nivel muy alto y vimos las bendiciones. It was really a cacophony of seemingly unsolvable problems being solved by miracles. No baptismal clothes, the water heater not working, the ward mission leader basically resigning, all overcome by pure spiritual inspiration. We did it! And we had a ton of people come to church too! I really saw the miracle of these peoples progression as I worked hard on my own personal righteousness.

But dang. This place i'm sitting in just started playing thriller. 

I had a super unique experience this week. You should ask me to tell you about it when I get home.

So basically I'm very excited. I'll let you know when the birthday package gets here. I'm so grateful for this opportunity to serve the lord, and I continue trying to not let it go to waste.


Elder Pyper

Monday, August 26, 2013

Aug. 26, 2013

Dear Family in general,

I honestly can't believe how things are going lately. It was a challenging week, and this district is especially challenging my leadership skills. But this week will be incredible. The Lord has been preparing me through inspirational thoughts from friends and family. Honestly what I've learned about personal revelation on my mission has changed the way I think about everything. I've wanted to be a chiropractor forever, but I've learned that when you are giving all your attention to the Lord, he directs you. I've been feeling a lot of attraction towards helping people find healing and relief from their pain mentally in my mission. I've honestly been kind of puzzled lately because of this. My bendicion patriarcal talks about success in my mission. I have time and again found all the people that are steeped in drugs, alcohol and other serious sins. Very rarely have I baptized anyone that I have found myself. But I feel the spirit work through me to help these people break their addictions. I feel him work through me to comfort broken hearted spouses and give them hope. I watch families come together again. I think I've found a new love in life. I love just listening to people and helping them ease their pain. Obviously the way to do that is coming unto the Savior. The Lord has given me sooooooo many opportunities to do this. The other day I received a super strong impression as I was reading about a woman whose life was destroyed by her husbands addiction. Sooo is the Lord directing me? Probably. Not sure if it's like a career thing or not, but I feel like it is. So I wrote it down and decided to at least check it out after my mission.

<obviously this week I'm also having my midlife crisis. I've been evaluating who I was and who I am. I think there's a little difference. But one day the reality of how much my father in heaven knows me came crashing down on my head, and I realized he knew exactly where I was gonna be right now, and he's ready for me to speed up my progress. There are new challenges. But there is always a solution. It's called the atonement of Jesus Christ. I can't begin to describe the reality of it. It's a sweet relief, an enabling power. It gets me through every day and helps me to have the energy to keep going. It's real.

I love you guys, try to stay strong with all the changes. Heavenly father has a plan for us. I'm proud of you all in my dear Enid Ward!


August 19, 2013

Dear Family,

My area is awesome, also my companion is too. Elder Zuñiga is my third companion from california. I'm still surviving without a single companion from utah. He's a good hard worker and he's ready to see some success in this area. That's good, cause so am I. This is a really different area because it's a bunch of rich uruguayos. That is soooo different from what I'm used to. We get a lot of really hateful rejections in between the good people we've found. So I've had to change my strategy. I proposed an idea to my comp, and we ran with it. It looks promising so far. We're trying to make the members do the missionary work, and it feels miraculous. It feels like they've all just been waiting for a missionary to come ask them to do the Lord's work. We've had some tremendous bonding moments with the members, and they all have their assignments to share the gospel with their friends. The Lord is blessing us in this path, and I know this is the way he wants his missionary work to go. It's been awesome.

In other news, the Elders in my district are really awesome. We're half latino, half american. My trainer came to this zone with me again, haha I really can't get away from that guy. There is a rampaging bishop that keeps shutting down baptisms even though he's not allowed to though... but he's in another ward, so yeah.

I am stunned to hear that Rachel is leaving home. That's some nonsense. But she'll have a lot of fun, and I can honestly say that the Lord prepared me for the rest of my life at BYU. He's got big plans for rachel. It is so inspiring to be a part of this historical period in the church's history. Also, I can clearly see the blessings of the Lord on our little Enid Ward. How many missionaries are in the field? Five with one freshly returned, right? 306 is a ridiculous number. I am going to tell that to my new bishop here to inspire him. More than ever, in this ward, I feel that the Lord placed me exactly where he wants me. 

The work is true. Share the gospel, friends!

Elder Pyper

Monday, August 12, 2013

August 12, 2013

Dear Mom,

Thanks for the email. I like your emails, they're totally inspirational, and they don't worry about things that really aren't important. I found out where I'm going this week! I'm headed farther in to Montevideo. I was on the very outskirts in a suuuuuper poor area. Now I'm headed to downtown. We're gonna see what it's like, because I have never worked in an area even slightly like that before. I already know my companion, his name is Elder Zuñiga. He's about my age in the mission, a little younger, and we are going to tear it up. I feel very strengthened by your prayers and stuff. Thanks a lot for the package! I'm almost out of room on my camera, so I think I might just send you guys one of my flash drives and then you can keep it and I'll just take the new one from the smaller package that's coming. I really don't know what to expect yet, but I'm excited to work. My Korean informant in the offices told me where I was going like almost a week before I was supposed to know, and that really affected me. Moral of the story, I never want to know early again. Haha, I'll send off the package with the pictures and stuff in about two weeks, I'm gonna wait till I get to the new area so I don't have to lug so much stuff around.

Love, Andy

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

August 5, 2013

Dear Family,


Turns out you were right. My toe and my elbow injuries were really just some opposition to overcome before THE BEST WEEK EVER...

We started off the week with a goal to set a baptismal date every day. We did it 5 out of seven days. We found a ridiculous amount of new investigators. We found a couple that's already married (never happens). It's a wonderful thing. I now fear that I will leave the area and not get to see all these wonderful people make covenants with God. But I'll let you know next monday. I'm definitely getting a new companion, at least, and probably a new area. But we'll see.

The Scotts are back! How crazy! I cannot believe how fast time goes.

Well, another couple that I taught is getting baptized by the other missionaries in our ward this week. I am super excited to go to a wedding. I get to be a witness in an uruguayo wedding. It's gonna be awesome.

Uruguay is warming up as well. Yesterday there was a little period of time where you couldn't see your breath inside our house!

I am way excited to be a part of this exciting time in the period of the church. And our new president gets here tomorrow. I have a feeling this man is gonna change my life. 

Love you all! 

Elder Pyper

July 29, 2013

Dear family,

I had a super weird week. I was at the doctor a bunch. But I'm almost all cured up  now, just various elbow slash toe injuries... I got to keep my xray though, so that's really cool. I have a picture of my elbow bones just sitting at home.

I really hate the fact that people have agency. Maybe a rough thing to say... Cause we were gonna baptize this lady, and she didn't come to church. And now elder ve'e and I will not have another baptism together. That's sad. It's time for him to go spread his wings though. In two weeks that is. Somebody actually has to leave this time, I'm pretty sure companionships are not allowed to go six months together, haha.

We totally just got a new missionary named elder walkenhorst in our mission. I wonder if he's related. President Newsome is coming to uruguay like next week or something. I don't know who's running the mission right now, cause President Armstrong is gone. We're being ruled by secrecy.

So is my buddy Elder Cutler actually assigned to the ward, or was he just randomly there one day? And who is getting baptized so much?

I'm having weird experiences trying to do this DL thing. One companionship is really struggling, they do not have too much animo. (I'm sorry, I literally didn't have any clue how to translate that word.) Another way agency is frustrating me.

I'm proud of everyone, I miss you all a lot!


Monday, July 22, 2013

July 22, 2013

Dear family,

I miss you all too, it's crazy what's going on since I left. I know I say this every week, but the girls always looked like they had grown up way too much since I left, and now that I've seen that pic of them next to mom, I know that it is flippin absurd how much they've grown. That is just not possible. And robert is home already? That can't be right. One of the missionaries I'm living with right now acts a lot like him. It's been a fun time. This house is seriously the best. I'll have to send a picture, so you guys can see what it looks like to live with two college football players.

There was a miracle baptism this week, the other companionship that lives with us baptized her, but I found her a while back before they got here. It was really a testimony builder because I got to do her baptismal interview and hear the full story of what happened after I taught her a lesson and gave her a booklet in the street. She went home, read it, prayed, and said, I want to be a member of this church. The next time I saw her was in church, she had showed up without me even inviting her in the initial contact. The spirit touched her very strongly, and she went and found her mormon neighbor, a priest in the ward, and made him take her to church. Really crazy to think of, because what would have happened if we just hadn't talked to her? It was a single girl walking down a dangerous dark street at almost nine o clock at night. But she is an amazing convert and will be a strong member. Moral of the story is share the gospel, friends.

I've been feeling good lately, but confession, I've been having elbow problems lately, so I'm going to talk to the mission nurse today. So...I don't know if you guys could send me my brace? 

I've been thinking a lot about the purpose of missionary work lately, and had one of those cool spiritual moments where a gospel principle just cements itself in your mind all of the sudden. I'm not here to baptize every person I see. I'm here to find the people who will keep the commitments and get baptized. That one little realization has helped with my sense of urgency and to not get discouraged a ton. So I'm super excited to go find them this week. The mission is baptizing a ridiculous amount lately, so I'm ready to reap some of these blessings that the Lord has. 

It is dang cold today.

Love you all, you're the best family I could ask for!

Elder Pyper

July 15, 2013

Dear fam,

I am well this week. It's been a hard one, it rained a good part of the week, and now that one of the missionaries that moved into our house has a thermometer, we found out how cold our house is in the morning. 40 degrees fahrenheit. It is awful. The sleeping bag is literally saving my life, haha. So it's just been a cold miserable wet week. But la fe no se pierde. It's a crazy world I live in. 

I cannot believe all this nonsense thats going on out there. What's happening in our family is just as nuts as in the outside world. One of my investigators the other day was trying to show me some pictures of his baby boy, and he asked me for help with the computer, cause he didn't know. I confidently told him I knew how to run a computer, and proceeded to encounter some kind of funky operating system that I had no clue what it was. I was defeated. But that's not all. I don't remember if I already asked about this, but Hostess is out of business? what the heck? Who is going to make cupcakes?

This week we saw a lot of effort and little results. I think what happened is that we directed our effort too much at staying happy in freezing rain, and not enough at trying to find people in freezing rain. So I'm working on it. Two wonderful investigators that we have are not coming to church still, and yet again, I find myself facing a seemingly impossible baptismal goal. "It'd take a miracle." But we are seeking one, and we hope to deserve one at the end of this week.

I am honestly learning way more from the guys in my district than they are from me. The only thing I know how to do in Uruguay is butcher your hair and get really fat. But they are excelent missionaries who have helped me to grow a lot already.

Anyway, I love you guys, I am excited to see all of you on some undisclosed date in the future!!

Elder Pyper

P.S.  Here is kind of a sad picture:
Andy and Pres. and Sis. Armstrong, they are being reassigned because she has some hip problems and can't do all the travel required as a mission president's wife.  So this is a farewell pic.

Monday, July 8, 2013

July 8, 2013

Dear family,

Ok, I just wrote for like twenty minutes, and then this dang keyboard deleted my email. So I'll sum it up.

1) We worked better then ever last week. The Lord gave us a lot of miracles.
2)Being a district leader is way awesome. I'm kind of power hungry.
3)I am super jealous of piranha fishing.

Moving on... There is a new missionary who is living in my house who is teaching me a ton. The small and simple things are truly made strong with humility. This kid works miracles, and his spanish is barely comprehensible. Big testimony builder for me. I did an intercambio with him, and his absolute fearlessness impressed me so much. He is awesome. Rachel is marrying him.

I am way happy about the roscoe the donkey picture. That was too good. Everybody in the whole zone thinks dad is so funny after I translated donkeys in the mist for them. And what the heck? The whole pyper clan and andrews people got so big! 

Anyway, I'll write more next week. Expect great things. 

Love, Andy

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

July 1, 2013

Dear family,

First of all, I totally know Alex Reed, and I can´t believe he got baptized! That's awesome!  That was a bit of news I was not expecting at all. Missionary work is so crazy. It's getting pretty hasty over here too. So here's the change news, me and Elder Ve'e are staying together for a third change. Almost unheard of. But I'm totally fine with that, we're like best friends now. And I have a lot to do here in this area still. And get this! They made me a district leader! I don't know what these people are thinking, but there goes all the free time I ever had. But luckily I'm still in the most dangerous zone in montevideo, so no sister missionaries in my district, haha. Just kidding, kind of. But seriously, I can't believe the miracles that happen in missionary work. It's been exciting.

Haha the music is awesome. Obviously we don't listen to the muse, but the CD of Pyper Clavinova Hits is very entertaining. 

The thoughts are just that I hope I can keep up with the pace the Lord is setting in this work. IT'S going too fast. We had a miracle girl randomly show up at church this week, and we're gonna go baptize her probably. Or not because they divided the area again. Back to still really big Aeroparque B. I love and appreciate all the support, I know this gospel is true and I'm never coming home!

Elder Pyper

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

June 24, 2013

Dear Family,

The week was pretty eventful. We had to leave the area a ton, did a few exchanges, but even with all that, Cristian still got baptized. Picture enclosed. It was flippin nuts too. We're talking broken pipes, boiling water to fill the font during sacrament meeting, stirring around the boiling/freezing water with a chair, and still everyone almost caught hypothermia. But it was the best baptismal service I'd ever seen.

It is great to hear about all the baptisms and stuff. The Lord is really hastening the work. I wish I could have watched that broadcast in English, it was super weird hearing president bowman translated to spanish. That was so cool! The home stake is representing! 

It's true that another change is due, I'm thinking I might be out of there. They're really sending me all over the place pretty quick. But we'll see. Usually they leave the oro in his area to get a new companion. Next time I email you guys, I'll know if I'm leaving or not. Vamos a ver.

I'm starting to feel really good. Everybody is telling me there's only a year left. But I don't care. I'm never leaving! 

Oh yeah, what the heck is on this flash drive you guys sent me? Is there like 17 songs of Kendall and Kenny and Spencer messing around with the piano? And also there is muse on there. I don't know whose fault that is, haha, but I'm not touching that till I get home. But seriously, that package was money. Latinos love beef jerky, it turns out. Thanks a lot!

Well, I think that's all. I'll keep you informed. Love you all, have a great week. Keep it classy.

Elder Pyper

Monday, June 17, 2013

June 17, 2013

Hello my dear family,

I got the package just now. It is delicious to have this coat. I needed it so bad, haha. I got the magnet from Grammy and grandpa as well a while back. Things are going good here, we had the best sunday of my mission so far! Four investigators in church, all with a baptismal date! I am super excited for all of them, but the gospel is a lifelong commitment. Baptism is just the beginning. But it feels good to see some fruit. The armstrongs are getting their assignment changed because hermana armstrong has a pretty serious problem with her hips, she's been hobbling about for quite a while. President armstrong is going off to be a lawyer for the church somewhere here in south america, and the hermana is going back to utah for treatment.

I miss scout camp. I'm happy someone was able to catch that bass, now we all know how big it is. Jake is also holding that thing like two inches from the camera, haha. 

I sure miss you guys a lot. It's gonna be awesome to be home. I accidentally found out what day I'm gonna get home, but I'm not telling anyone, haha. No puedo hacerme trunky. It's really been a fun ride with Elder Ve'e, he's turned into a great missionary, and once he realizes that he speaks spanish, he'll be flying. We're really trying to do everything possible to help our two baptisms get there this month. If they do, I will be so incredibly happy. It's very possible, we just have to show enough faith that the Lord helps us.

Something I learned this week that I loved is about faith. Faith is manifest through works, but at the same time, faith is works. FAith=Repentance, Obedience, and Dedicated service. 

Thanks for all the news, hope the spurs win!


June 10, 2013

Dear family,

It's been a crazy week. We were about to announce the baptism of Cristian, a seventeen yearold kid that's been giving me headaches for like a month and a half, and he somehow found the way to not go to church. Luckily, a legendary less active that we've been working with shows up, and he wants to baptize his kids, so we'll see if we can help him with that. Have I mentioned I hate sundays? They are pretty awful out here. I get so flippin tense waiting on investigators to come to church. Luis is as usual finding as much opposition as he can. It really comes and finds him actually. But there you have it.

Something really cool that happened this week was the challenge that president Armstrong put out this week. We used to count the amount of contacts that we did, and we had to do a certain number a week, and he compared that to the law of moses. Well now the mission has moved to a higher law. That's gonna take a new level of focus for me, I think, but it'll be amazing. The new law is talk with everyone that is possible. It really made me realize how much importance this calling has. I've been studying a lot about a true conversion this week, how a person can really be changed. Psalms 40 has got to be the new theme of my mission. Just the whole thing is incredible. 

So how is the family doing? Relaxing for the summer? Is the pool open yet? Interesting fact, there are only like three public pools in this whole country. Oh yeah, last week, we found out that we're getting a new mission president two years early. It made me really sad, but everything is according to the will of the Lord. I just want to be the best instrument I can be for the new president when he gets here in July. So we'll see, huh?

Anyway, I love you all a ton, eat some american candy for me! 

Elder Pyper