Monday, September 29, 2014

We need a wedding to happen!

Hello Fam.

Wow, its kinda crazy how fast the time is passing.  With the way transfers line up and all...I think I will be home in a little bit more than 9 months.  It scares me how fast it all goes by.

Well, this week was a more or less kind of week.  It was great in some parts and just bad in others.  So, I will start out with the good.

LA FAMILIA R. N. ....They have progressed sooooooo much.  I have never ever ever seen anyone like them.  They have a baptismal date in 3 weeks, the 18 of October, and they have almost done all of the requirements, only need one more church attendance,  a couple more lessons, a pair of white clothing, and a of course, a marriage.  We usually teach them officially three times a week, but we see them or speak with them almost daily.  The highlight of this week was definitely teaching them about tithing and fasting.  It was a great lesson, and everything went well for them.  The best part is when we saw them Sunday, they were fasting and had brought their tithing to pay in church.  I have never seen more faith!  Paying tithing and fasting, three days after you learn about it.  Thats amazing to me!

Later that week, we were talking about the Book of Mormon and I asked them if they thought it was true.  They both told me YES!  That answer, faith, obedience, they have got it all!.  In less than two weeks, Madeleine has read to Mosiah 28, and Christian has read up to 1 Nephi 22!  It’s so fun to teach them because they eat it all up AND they understand, AND they have good questions.  They are going to be such good members in the church here, such good leaders and more.  

The only problem is their marriage.  Madeleine is a lawyer from Venezuela, and when she came here a month ago...she brought all of here papers, but they weren’t stamped with the official stamp of the country in the capital.  So they are looking for a place where its a little bit more relaxed to get married.  Here in Peru, about 5% of the laws are enforced, and those 5% of the laws that are enforced are the ones about marriage.  Who cares about the murderers, gangs, and the thieves...that’s just everyday stuff...then when there are people who want to get married to have a strong family...CALL THE POLICE!!!  It’s really frustrating, and it’s driving me crazy.  Why is everything against families?? They are really looking to get married, but its just a matter of time and place.  If anyone is out there reading this...please keep praying for them!

Other than all the great stuff with them, it was a regular week.  We had a multi zone conference with President Rowley this week, so that is always cool.  And other than that, it’s just work...walking, and talking!

Funny things happening in Peru:
In a week, its Election week for the State of Tumbes....So its basically Student Council elections on steroids.  Every five minutes, a car with huge speakers passes by blurting things with music and there are posters everywhere.  There is a law that you can’t have meetings of any type that day, so they canceled General Conference for the we have to wait a whole week longer before I will be able to watch it.

Best moment with companion this week:
He is just the coolest guy-  Right now he is really sick, he got sick because he ate at HAPPY BURGER...jaja  so we have spent quite a bit of time down today.

Most spiritual moment?
I have had my testimony for a long time about the BOM but this week I was able to finish reading it again.  That book has really changed my life and I know for sure that it is 100% true.  This time I read it completely in Spanish and it was such a great experience.  I love it so much and its crazy how much help I have received from it as I have been reading it this last couple of months.

Spiritual truth learned this week?
More about the neccesity of the BOM.  It’s the keystone to everything.  I have realized that If I could just teach in a way that could help people want to read the BOM and pray about it...then they could know that what I teach is true.  SO ESSENTIAL.  SO READ EVERYDAY.  please.

Pday fun?
My comp is sick, so we played a little bit of BBALL, and cooked pancakes and all.

Most grateful for what this week?
BOM and this sweet family we are teaching.....So awesome!  I love them both.

Well I am fine, doing good and going strong, looking for ways to improve.

Love you all and hope that everything goes well!

Elder Bradshaw

Monday, September 22, 2014

Missionary Pranks

Habla Familia!
Hows it been going this week? Shout out to Elli...Happy Birthday little one.  12!??? That's crazy.
This week was a pretty chill week.  Nothing really awesome or crazy happened but I do have a couple of good stories.
So we were cleaning our apartment the other day, and we found a pair of keys for almost all of the apartments of the zone.  Later, we got a call from the office and we had to go meet with a few Elders to tell them about a change of plans.  So Elder Mulford and I planned to go a little bit early to play a trick on him.  So we went over, opened their apartment, then just kinda messed it up, opening suitcases, putting clothes all over, just making it look like someone had ran through there and robbed them.  We then left the door open and waited until they got back...We waited and waited and then we heard them start running and freaking out.  It was really really funny, we had a good time.  Don't worry, it wasn't to bad of a prank or anything...but it was super fun.
So...The R N Family.....I can't even explain them.  It's so crazy!  Their progress has been so fast.  We invited Madelaine to read the Book of Mormon and the first time she read 18 chapters, and the second she read 14.  She is just flying through the Book of Mormon and it's so awesome.  The whole family has a baptismal date for the 18 of October, but we are still waiting for the marriage.  If you could pray for that one!  They are soooooo awesome and wonderful.  We already have great trust in them, and them in us.  They are so awesome.  Hope everything keeps going the way it's going.  There are 5 in the family, but 3 above 8.  And they all attended church this week!
This week has just been kinda long, not really too much progress.  The area is getting better, but we still spend like 3 hours everyday walking around looking for people to teach, because everything falls through.

Tell us about the people you are working with...
So we are working tons with the R. N. Family.  There are 5...Christian (dad), Madelaine (mom), David (10 años), Andrea (4 anos), Alessandra (2 anos). 

We are also doing tons of reactivating...with R. C..  He's progressed a ton too.  He's like 60 years old, baptized a while ago but its hard for him to go to church because he works in a shrimp farm and he works soooooo much, all through the night and all.  But he is the coolest guy, super simple and humble, but so awesome.  He is now attending and reading!

Marcos Hinostroza, hes a LA we found with Elder Romero, he's super awesome too. 

We are working toooooooons with LA. 

ohhhhhh and the V. family....So the parents were recently reactivated and their daughters were recently baptized....And they lloooooooooooove us.  The girls are 12, 10 and 5 and they live in really really humble circumstances, but they are so receptive to us.  Including they wrote "Elders" on the front door.  They are super awesome.

How's p-day today?
Super cool, relaxed today.
Traveling to Piura when??
In two weeks, I think.  This week is a Multi-zone conference so President and his wife are coming here.

In what ways are you better than when you left... 
I guess you'll just have to wait 10 months more.

Best thing about this week?
Teaching the R. N. Family.  So awesome....They are the family that gets me up in the morning.

How's the comp?
Super awesome!  Getting along super super well.

Have you done anything nice for him this week?
Bought him lunch today! and shined his shoes.

How's your allergies?
I eat what ever I want and I'm fine. 
I am doing super well here in Peru.  A mission is the hardest thing in the world, and nothing comes easily, except for diarrhea and exhaustion...but I am getting used to it! 

Love you all so much and really hope that you have a good week this week!

Elder Bradshaw

Monday, September 15, 2014

Work, Faith, Obedience, and Miracles.

I really don’t know where to start this week. 

It has been on of the best weeks of my mission and I don’t know if I have ever felt the Spirit so much.  I feel like the Lord has seen my faith and hard work for these long months, and now finally...and now finally we are seeing some great results.  I will just tell a couple of stories about what has happened and a couple of the miracles that I have seen.

First off, Elder Mulford is one of the coolest guys ever.  It’s always nice to really connect with a companion.  Just the Utah=Utah connection is just awesome.  He wants to work and wants to help a ton in the area.  I am super happy with my comp.

So there is a RM in our ward that returned like 7 or so years ago.  He got married, the missionaries baptized his wife and all was good.  They later went inactive and haven’t really done anything spiritually for maybe 2 years, without reading, praying or anything.   The guy has always been a little prideful and hard hearted when I have met with him.  Yesterday we went to a lesson and just started talking with him about him mission and everything...for like 30 to 45 minutes...We told stories about good and bad companions and everything and it was a good time.  We built up lots of trust.  Then after, we asked him if we could share a small message.  Right before the prayer, a thought came to my mind to have him share one of his favorite scriptures with us.  I have never experienced a prompting in this way, but I trusted it and asked him to share a scripture that he likes.  He opened up to Alma 30 and read a scripture about Alma, Korihor, and mostly about testimonies.  As he explained it, and the importance of a testimony, his eyes began to swell up and a couple of tears rolled down his face.  I feel like lots of times, as missionaries and members, we always are looking for the perfect scripture, or the perfect thing to say, but really the Spirit is always willing to guide us, and if he follow Him...the experience will always be successful.  The guy completely changed.  180 degrees.  He bore his testimony and we bore ours.  All we did was listen and nothing more.  I have been thinking lots about this lesson because it really impacted me.  Really interesting.

And now, let me tell you a little bit about the biggest miracle I have seen...ever. 

As I said, we contacted this guy last week, and last Monday we stopped by his house and had a lesson with them.  We got to know Christian, his wife, Madelaine, and their three kids, David, Andrea, and Alessandra.  As we explained the message of the Restoration, they just ate it up, and just absorbed it like a sponge.  They accepted a baptismal date for the 11 October. (!!!) We invited them to read 3 Nephi 11 and Madelaine read 7 chapters.  Christian has told us that he has received his answer and knows that this is all true (after the first lesson).  We told our WML that we found the family of ‘gold’, but we have know changed it to the family of ‘Diamonds’. When they attended church, they got there a little late but they were there for Gospel Principles class.  This day, the class was about Eternal Families.  The sister missionaries were teaching, and at one point they asked Madelaine about what she thought about it.  Madelaine just broke down in tears and said “this is so wonderful, who wouldn’t want to be with their families forever?”  Its been a long 14 months of walking, talking, and teaching, but I feel I may have found the people that I was sent to find.  I really just can’t find the right words to describe them.  They are just so wonderful. 

They recently came from Venezuela like a month ago, and are searching the true church, and we know that they know that they found it.  They aren’t married, but they brought all of their papers from Venezuela with them and it shouldn’t be hard for them at all to get married.  SO EXCITED!  I just hope that I don’t get transferred.  I might even ask president to not transfer me...if it’s ok with him!

We have seen so many other miracles and the area is really changing,  I am so happy to be here...and we are working hard. 

With 4 extra missionaries in your zone...did you have to go find accommodations for them to get them set up?
No, they were all in the other established zone and everything, but President just changed them to our zone.

You always seem so positive about whatever district or zone you are you have many issues or problems to resolve with them?

Not really, they are good missionaries.  All of them.

What’s been on your mind this week?
This family that we found. I’m so excited for the family that we found. 

Best thing about this week?
The FAMILY.  (again)

Tender mercies?
So many, and just the Spirit that guided us so much this week.  It’s been crazy.

Gringo cravings this week? 
We've just been talking about JCW, Tucanos, and everything in basically everything. 

I am doing really well.  I hope I have given you a little look into the amazing family that we have found.  They are already super excited for everything and have goals to get married and baptized.  We have an appointment tonight with them.  Pray that it goes well, please!  The family is named Romero Nava

Love you all so much!  Have a good week and send me some pics!

Elder Bradshaw

Monday, September 8, 2014

The Lord blesses those who strive to do their best!!

¡Habla familia!  ¿Como están?

This week was a good week, just a little more relaxed, and nice.  Elder Romero left yesterday in the afternoon, and now I am with my new companion, Elder Mulford from OREM, UTAH!!!!  I am super pumped to work with him and excited to see how it goes.  It’s going to be awesome, I think.
#801   #happyvalleyboys

It was a bit sad to see Elder Romero go, but its all good.  It was nice to have him as such an awesome companion here in Puyango...Tons of missionaries and members have noted the difference that has happened here recently and the zone is improving a ton.  I am excited to continue working with Elder Mulford to change that even more.  Its going to be an awesome transfer. There weren’t many transfers in my zone, but it grew from 14 missionaries to 18, and I’m still with many of my great friends.  I’m excited to continue the work.

SUPER AWESOME STORY:  So Elder Romero left yesterday in the afternoon, and after he left I was with a young man in my area.  He’s going on his mission soon, and we were searching for a couple referrals.  We knocked on a door, and this guy came out.  30 years old with 3 kids and a wife...Not married, but we will work on that.  We started talking because he sent his oldest son to the activity that we had, to do some investigating....They had recently moved from Venezuela because he wants to protect his family.  He told us that he is looking for the true church to put his family in.  So tonight we have a lesson with him and his family and his other family members that he is going to present to us!  Sooooo  super awesome!   The Lord blesses those who strive to do their best, and they are really trying. If you could all send out a quick prayer for them please!

What tender mercies have you seen this week? 
The way that the Lord drove us to find that family.  I am so excited for our lesson today.  I really hope that all goes well!

Celebrations for Elder Romero’s last week? 
We ate out, and just spent a lot of time with the other missionaries.  We still worked and did tons of service and all.

What are you learning as you study? 
Tons about the BOM.  I am in Mormon right now and its amazing!  Keep reading.

Mission activities coming up? 
Multi  zone conference in these coming weeks.

Will you have any contact with the family of Omar?  It would be fun to see them again! 
I probably won't be able to see them again, but I am going to call them soon.

Do you need to do zone training now that you went to Piura last week? 
Yeah we trained them and all.  I feel like it went really well.  It's always fun because I love my zone

Was there a moment this week when you knew you were being led by Heavenly Father? 
To find that awesome family!

What’s your apartment like? 
You walk into a big room where we study and all...then weve got a kitchen, a bathroom, and another room to sleep in,  Its big and comfy.  And we are cleaning it!

Did you eat a vegetable this week?
Yes I did.  On my hamburger....I had a cucumber, tomato, and cabbage.

How’s your soccer skills?  I bet they are sweet! 
I am getting pretty good.  I think of it as training for my inter-mural soccer league.

I am happy and ready to work hard.  I’m excited.  Sorry its a little shorter today, but I love you all and hope that everything goes well!

Elder Bradshaw

Wednesday, September 3, 2014


Wellllllll family.

I'm back from my trip to Piura...sorry I didn't get to write on Monday but it's been fun to look forward to writing today.  Although, I don’t really know what to write this week.  All was good, so I guess I will just send a little small recap of the best parts.

This week, we planned a huge ward activity.  In Peru, there is a show called “Esto Es Guerra” or “This is War”.  Everyone here basically worships it.  It’s basically just a bunch of inappropriately dressed girls and stupid guys dancing around and doing silly things like making cup towers and other stupid games.  Really is the most ridiculous thing in the world.  So...we decided to do a knock-off  of it for a ward party.  Our ward is super cold and is less active than the other branches I have been in.  We get about 80 attend church each week and we had a little bit over 80 attending the ward activity.  It was crazy and but it turned out super well.  We called it ‘THIS IS GAMES’, and it was a blast.  It was super fun though, awesome!  We worked a ton with that this week, making everything for I’m glad it turned out so well.

Our teaching pool is still small, and filled with Less Actives.  Its crazy that we almost have 0 investigators, but we have tons of LA that come to church and that are progressing nicely!  It’s pretty awesome.  The family H. is going super well.  Oh!  But at the zone leader training, I was talking with my friend, who is a ZL in Talara, and he said that O. & M E got married and also baptized!!!!!  (remember my first area, the family that I taught!)  Also, in Querecotillo, they have baptized two more people, that I also taught.  Even though I may not have baptized for 6 months, I am feeling like my work has been worth it.  I'm so hopeful that those people will be able to feel the happiness that the gospel will bring into their lives.  True happiness. 

Things are going good with Elder Romero...he gets to go home next week!  We are just going to have a good week! He is going to Provo when he goes home, so I told him to give you guys a call, and maybe you can take him out to eat or something.  It would be kinda cool.  He really is the coolest guy, and its been a bomb to work with him.  The zone is improving and everything is going really well.  Transfers are Monday morning, but Elder Romero leaves here Sunday afternoon.  (We just bought his ticket!) and I will know who my comp is on Saturday.  Elder Romero told President that I need a good-hard working comp, so...we will see what happens.

P-day sight-seeing...before Elder Romero finishes his mission and heads home next week.

All of the office elders told me that they always read my's a shout out to them!

We made t-shirts for the whole zone and they turned out super sweet! I’ll send a pic.

Puyango zone t-shirts...notice the number Zack chose for his shorts...jaja!

We went to Piura this week, and all is well.  It’s a little bit tiring and all, but I always like to go for training and to see some friends.

1.  How have you been “Golden” this week? 
I’m trying to be a little nicer with the people, by knowing their names and really listening to them.  And its working!

3.  What are you loving about dad today? 
All of the things that he taught me!  Really I value it all sooo much.

I saw a weed-whacker yesterday and I got jealous.

4.  I’ve noticed that when you are struggling or having a hard seem to learn some great lessons...what are you learning through this dry spell in your mission. 
Just more work work work and work.  The Lord works in mysterious ways, and we just have to be ready to do what He wants.

5.  Are there things that we can do that would be helpful to you? 
Just send me more pics and letters and emails!  :)

6.  Coolest thing about your week. 
How the activity I talked about above turned out.  It really was a miracle.

I am doing good.  I love you all so much!  Have an awesome week!

Elder Bradshaw