Monday, August 25, 2014

Another Baptism

Hey Everyone,

Well, to start off I have a funny story. The best teaching moment of the week was not with an investigator but with myself. I was listening to a talk given at BYU on my iPod and the spirit just hit me like a bag of bricks. He talked about the Salt Lake Temple and the process of building it. In the end he quoted a non-LDS newspaper that said that “After 40 years the Salt Lake Temple has become a monument of Mormon perseverance”. The spirit then whispered “you too must become a monument of Mormon perseverance”. I cried for a good 5 minutes. The lord is preparing me here in the mission for something in my life. I don’t know what, but I know that these last 4 months have helped me become a monument of Mormon perseverance.

Continuing with the good news, Didma got baptized this week. Sadly, I didn’t have my camera so I don’t have pictures. I’m going to have to send those next week after I get the photos from Elder Rojas. It was an awesome baptism. We had two sisters play their violas for a special musical number. After 3 years of investigating the church she finally made the choice to be baptized. I am so happy for her. Now we just need to work on her husband, he is close, he just needs to be pushed into the pool a little.

P-days around here lately have involved a lot of early mornings. We have been waking up at 5:30 so we can play soccer on a big grass field. It's a lot of fun. Today we played with some members from a different part of Medellin. I almost knocked over one kid twice. He just kept running into the way of my leg as I was trying to get the ball from him, so he fell over. He was a good sport, I helped him up both times.

Wednesday we had companion exchanges with Elder Ralph. He was in my area so he could do the interview for Didma that night. We chatted a lot about Skyrim and other video games. When I told him that my mom played video games, he flipped out and asked me “Why is your mom so cool”. He say he want to hang out with my mom after he gets home to talk about video games. Pretty funny.

Seeing the picture of Dad’s sewing machine he sent me this week reminded me of a funny story that happened here. I was in the house of a member and she had a machine like Dad’s to sew shoes. I told her that my dad had a machine just like that, she asked if you were a Cobbler as well. I told her no and that you use it to sew seats for scooters and other leather things. She then asked how was the leather business? I told her that you were a graphic designer and that the seats and the scooters were a hobby. She was blown away that someone would have one of those big machines just because.

It was cool to hear that Laura Lee and Brittney are back from their missions. They only left a few weeks before me. If I was a girl I would be home.It’s cool she gave a great talk. Well, when I get back I’m going to try not to cry this time like when I left. I’m going to shoot for the voice tremble that Elder Eyring has when he speaks. Although I don’t think thats going to happen. I cry a lot in my mission. I can be talking about whatever and I just start crying in the lessons. I guess that the spirit can testify about whatever he sees fit and I have no choice in the matter than to feel it.

Oh, and here is something to make my parents feel good. When I tell everyone how old my parents are, they always respond “Oh wow, your parents are really young.” I thought you’d like that.

Well, thats all for this week.

This is Alec wishing you farewell.

Relaxing after a long day.

Getting to use my fancy pen made of wood from the Draper Temple.
Brother West made it for me when I served there.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Baggy Shirts & New Peeps To Teach

Hola Everyone,

So first I need some help from. So you remember the family history stories you sent with me on my mission, well I lost them in like last October and I miss them. Can you send me more. I liked reading them. I also want you guys to send me a pocket Book of Mormon in English in my next package along with a pair of suspenders? I want to make something to keep my shirt tucked in. I have lost weight so my shirts get all lose and baggy though out the day. I would just buy some here but they are some sort of luxury item and pricey. I’m a poor missionary so everything costs a lot so if you could help me out with those few things I would appreciate it.

This week we were able to contact the niece of our ward mission leader and her boyfriend. They had a death recently in the family so they asked us to teach the plan of salvation. We ended right after the spirit world and the aunt shared her testimony/experience about what happened when she went to the temple. She took the name of the brother that died to the temple to have the baptism done. She got to watch the man be baptized for her nephew. She burst in to tears and said she heard a whisper saying thank you. I touched my heart and wanted to share it with you guys.

We also got to contact a reference from two of the sisters in our ward. Sister Neila and Sister Adreana reached out to a couple named Raul and Rocio. They told us that though efforts of these two sister that they felt the pure love of Christ in there lives. They are so great. They even asked how long it would take before they could be baptized. We have plans to share the Joseph Smith movie with them this week. I’m very excited about it.

The best part of my week was having one of the youth of the ward that is getting ready to go on a mission ask if he could study with us in the mornings. I was so touched that he wanted to be with us and prepare to be a missionary. We are going to start on Tuesday studying with him and will meet him at the church. It should be great.

The worst part of my week has been my comp still being super trunky. He just wants to go back to the house and tries to do nothing all day. I’m just tired of dealing with his foolish aspirations of renouncing his calling as a representative of Jesus Christ before his calling is over. Sing along:
Why should we mourn or think our lot is hard?
'Tis not so; all is right.
Why should we think to earn a great reward
If we now shun the fight?
Gird up your loins; fresh courage take.
Our God will never us forsake;
And soon we'll have this tale to tell--
All is well! All is well!

This to shall pass. Next transfer hopefully we are both moving on.

Also, I’m glad that Dad finally about to finish the cafe racer. I will be stunning when its all said and done. So question, to build a cafe do you need to spend all the money you did? Because I know you may laugh but I want to build one now. Obviously not to the extent that you have but a more basic Cafe that still looks cool and classic. Could you let me know if this is even possible or if I’m just a confused little boy with his eyes being to big for his stomach?

To end on a happy note. I’m glad that you and mom could celebrate 25 years together. Its awesome to hear about a couple that is really living what marriage should be after seeing every one here living in "free unions”. Thanks to you both for being such a great example for me.

Have a great week

P.S. I got a letter this week that you guys sent to me in the MTC 1 1/2 years ago. A bit slow but all letters are appreciated.

I made mini pizzas because I can.

I also got a Super Heroes Package from my Mom this week for August. Sadly this was not a web making device. I was highly disappointed. Members and Missionaries ask me what my parents send in my packages since they are awesome and I get one each month. For some reason the look at me strange when I tell them toys and candy. I think its awesome!!!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Flying Kites and New Bags

Hey Everyone,

So we are going to have a baptism coming up!!! The sister in which we have been working is going to get baptized the 23rd of this month. She told us that she was tired of waiting and that it was this month or nothing. She wanted to have an interview with the bishop before she met with our district leader. She had the interview with the bishop on Sunday. We just have to organize the time for her to meet with our district leader. I am very excited for her.

It has been fairly hot recently. I don’t know what happened to the land of eternal spring I’m supposed to be living in. It hasn´t been bad, it just means I’m sweating up the hills now but it has been the best weather of all of my areas. I want to end my mission here in Medellin, but I don’t think it is going to happen. I also want to be in the office for a little just to have the chance to do a little of everything.

I did get a new bag this week although it is not a backpack. I bought another shoulder bag but this one weighs less then half of the other bag and I can only carry a third of the stuff I had. I actually am really loving it. This has been the first week in a long time that my shoulder hasn’t hurt after we get back to the house. The mission medic is also not going to have to stalk me to see if I need to have an appointment anymore since I down sized so thats nice. I also was going to give away my old bag, but when it came time to leave the house I just couldn’t do it. I named it, but its like cadavers, once you name them it hard to give them away. Hey and thanks once more for sending me the money for the new bag. Now I just need to name it, my last one was named “La Vaca” or the cow. What do you think I should name it?

One fun thing this week was we went to visit a less active sister and she invited us to fly kites. So we hung out on a ridge while her son flew a kite and we took turns. I mainly was taking with her friend that had just moved here from Bogota. She had spoken with missionaries before and even had a Book of Mormon. We planed a family home evening with them for this Tuesday. I’m going to make brownies and we are going to watch The Testaments with them as well.

This friday was fun too. I was in a companion exchange with the zone leaders so I was in Aranjuez. It was fun, I was with Elder Johnson. We had a lot of fun having all the snakes (women on the prowl) staring at us, sure it was uncomfortable and they looked at us like pieces of meat, but they thought we were Grade A so that was one good thing. They just don’t get that all we want is to teach them about the Lord. We also visited a sister in their ward. We asked if she had any questions that she wanted answered (she was a member FYI). She asked us to explain about sons of perdition. We were like, Wait... what. It threw it us off guard. Luckily I have spent time studying things like this in our spare time. We explained how it works and then read D&C where it talks about how someone can become a son of perdition. All in all it was a very interesting lesson. I was glad I could help her out. I know a lot of other elders would have been at a loss for words.

Dad’s letter about the motorcycle and him almost forgetting the license plate bracket made me laugh. It reminded me of the rules that they have for motorcycles here. You have to not only have to have the plate, but the number on your helmet, and a vest that has the number on the front and the back. But thats only if you want to drive in the city, if you are in the outskirts the cops don’t do any thing. You could do wheelies in front of a school as the kids are leaving if you want. The Cops just don't care here.

Also on Sunday I heard an awesome quote from Joseph Smith I want to share: "If my life is of no value to my friends it is of none to myself” We need to live in such away that those that are close to us value who we are and what we do.

Well, thats all for this week, this is Elder Alec Ferdinand Beats wishing you a wonderful week.


Walked across this bridge and had to stop and take a picture. I feel like my Dad now.

My Awesome new and smaller bag.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Things Are Looking Up

Hello friends of the best missionary that is currently serving from the Meyers family,

So my comp is doing better. I think the Greenie in the house is going to keep him on his best behavior. I have had to crackdown on a lot of stuff. He just doesn’t understand the mission like he should but he will be good. The president has given me permission to drag him in the street if I have to so thats nice. I give the president a report every week on how he is doing, so he knows if there are problems. I can do it, I can last one more transfer and maybe I will be able to change him and help him end strong.

The new guys in our apartment are pretty sweet. The senior comp is Elder Caté and his hijito (son) is Elder Rojas. Elder Caté is from Guatemala, he is going to end his mission with elder Marichi. However he his really focused on training the new guy so he is going to be a great help. Elder Rojas is from Bogota. He served in the army for a year before he came on his mission. From what iI have seen he is super great. He has a great spirit about him and I know he is going to do a lot of good in his mission. 

So Friday was an interesting and fun day. We were on exchanges and we went to Brother Correa´s house to drop off the booklet I made, he had asked for a copy. What was planed to be a short visit became 2 1/2 - 3 hours. We were talking about how Sister Didma was doing and how we could help her out. Then he showed me his latest project. He is taking all of the teachings out of the Book of Mormon and putting them into a book. Its pretty cool, he has found all of the teachings that are found from Nephi to Jacob thus far. He plans to go through the whole book. Then his wife gave us ice cream (awesome). Then we talked about the early church and how people had to have their faith tested a lot more then now a days, that a lot people have become relaxed since they have not had to exercise their spiritual muscles so when the problems come they are week and struggle. Afterwards his wife said she made us dinner. She made a whole mess of pancakes. Normally I don’t like pancakes but she had me put cream cheese on them, and MAN those things are delicious. It was a salty sweet combination in my mouth, just goodness. Try it, you will thank me.

So with everyone writing me about the wedding planning going on I have heard a lot about Taylor and I think I’m going to like her. She seems pretty cool and if she can put up with our family and our craziness, then its meant to be. Its like Garth said `` If you blow chunks and she comes back, she's yours. If you spew and she bolts, then it was never meant to be.´´ It could be said with our family as well.

I loved hearing about Dad and Lydia’s backpack overnighter. That is sweet that Bean kicked your butt. She was telling me that she had loved her weight training class, and that she was feeling ripped lately. Sadly, I think Bean could beat me as well. My legs are toned and strong but I just never seem to get much definition bit I can usually surprise most people with my hidden awesome strength. I think its in the DNA. My thought is that the last three months or so of my mission I will go to the gym in the mornings as part of our exercise stuff but until then I’m content with super great legs.

So I got some bad news. Two members of my ward were talking to the mission doctor and they talked about how I had a big bag that weighs a lot and they just thought I was caring to much around and I was going to hurt myself. He did not like that one bit. He told them that I need to call him. So when I told him about the bag he gave me two options: get a new bag or he would have to call the president and make me come in for a physical. I really don’t want to have to go to the doctor so I’m going to need to buy a smaller bag. That means I’m going to have to take you guys up on the offer that you gave me of a new one when my backpack got stolen last year. I’m going to need some money to buy a decent bag. It would be about 120,000 pesos or something that won’t break down before I leave. They don’t sell simple bags here. Its either cheap or it’s expensive. Sorry and thanks.

Well, I hope everyone just has a jam-packed week full of explosions of joy. Until next time this is Me signing off.


P.S. The average cruising airspeed velocity of an unladen European Swallow is roughly 11 meters per second, or 24 miles an hour. I have not yet completed my research on African Swallows, however when I do I will inform you posthaste.

These are the booklets I made. They were once pretty common but the discontinued them in Spanish in the 80’s.

My latest purchase for all the stuff that keeps breaking at our flat, a 31 piece screwdriver set. It’s helped a lot.