Monday, August 31, 2015

Week 3

¡Hola Amigos y Familia!

How are you guys? Elder Russell Nelson (one of the top leaders of the church) was supposed to come visit us in Guatemala this week, but due to complications with political events that I am not allowed to write back about, he didn’t come. Instead, there is supposed to be some kind of video broadcast devotional tomorrow.

A couple funny things happened this week. We were practicing our teaching skills with some of the Latino missionaries, and I was able to understand every word that they said when they were giving their lesson. They could also understand me, more or less, when my compañero and I were giving our lesson, too. That was really awesome! I also had to give a talk in sacrament meeting solo en español (only in Spanish), too. That was really scary, but it was very rewarding afterwards. I have to write another one eventually, though. When I get out into the field, my first Sunday, I will probably have to give a talk, like all of the elders back home, but I’ll be speaking to an entirely Guatemalteco congregation.

I just want to get out into the field!!!! I know I won’t be able to understand a word they say, but I’ll do whatever I can to help the people I meet in whatever way possible. If the Lord is with me, then I will be able to do all things, and eventually, that means I’ll be able to speak fluently too. For now, I’m putting as much of the doctrine of Christ into my heart as possible and learning a couple things about Spanish along the way. At this point, I theoretically understand a lot of Spanish, but putting it into practice is very different.

I love all of you guys! Thank you for the e-mails, and for everything that you guys have done for me! I still haven’t seen much of Guatemala yet, but after I leave the CCM and get my camera back, I’ll take plenty of pictures! Love you all!


Elder Jeffrey Reed

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Week Two Picture

Week Two

Hola Familia y Amigos!!

So for the past two weeks, I’ve been assigned as district leader over a group of 12 missionaries, right? That will change soon because the district leader usual changes every two weeks. 

I have an interesting story to share.  This week I noticed that the Hermanas in my district were having somewhat of a difficult time staying together. Added to this problem was the fact that a rather unfocused elder from the other branch would go out of his way to try flirt with one of the Hermanas in our district. Missionaries aren’t supposed to flirt; we´re out here to serve the Lord and to serve his children. So I had to report that and get it all sorted out. Other than that, nothing negative has happened.

Guatemala is going through somewhat of a political upheaval right now, during the elections. They´re choosing two candidates to move on to the final elections, and there are billboards everywhere and ads for each candidate. We were supposed to go to the central market today, but due to riots, it’s not safe enough for us anymore, which is fairly disappointing. 

Now that it’s our 3rd week in the CCM, we have been officially denied the privilege of speaking English. My Spanish is still pretty rough, and there’s a lot more I have to learn. I find myself understanding more and more every day, and I hope that I can continue to learn as best as I can. One of my favorite parts of P-day is visiting the temple. It’s so beautiful here, and there are plants everywhere, even though we’re in the middle of a city. I can’t send anything bigger than a letter back right now, but once I get out into the field I’ll send some stuff home. There’s been a bit of a bug going around the CCM, and a couple guys caught it. I’ve had a bit of a cough, but it hasn’t been too bad. 

I hope you guys are doing well! Please keep writing me! I love you all!!!!!

PS. I found this wonderful thing in the bible dictionary called the Harmony of the Gospels, where it basically lists out Jesus´ ministry on earth in chronological order. So that’s fun.

PPS. Scorpion, through tie trading, I have managed to get ahold of a tie as bright as the neon green long-sleeve shirt you have.


Elder Jeffrey Reed

My First Week

Hola, Amigos y Familia!!!!
If you guys are wondering, everything got sent to the right Jeff Reed. There´s so much that happened already. On the first day, they started us on Spanish immersion. I feel like I´ve learned so much more about the Spanish language in the past week than I have throughout all of my life!  The language, as far as I can tell, is coming pretty naturally. Also, I’ve figured out why Jodi´s spelling is so bad- her English isn’t degrading, she’s just trying to write as many words as fast as possible on a computer. My spelling isn’t doing so well right now either, but there’s just so much that’s new and exciting. Qe get up at 6:30m and go to bed at 10:30pm. I was called to serve as District Leader, which basically means I’m in charge of helping the missionaries in my district stay focused. I hope I’m doing a good job with that.
Jodi was right- the CCM (MTC is Spanish) is a jail. It´s incredible at the same time, though! The food is good, although it can make you feel a little funny sometimes, and I haven’t gotten sick yet, either. We have constant Spanish study every day for about 8 hours, 1 hour of sports and exercise time, and about an hour and a half of food. I haven’t exactly figured out the numbers, but it’s a lot of study. My district is incredible. Everyone in it has the most diverse natures and personalities ever! And my companion, Elder Nawahine, is pretty awesome, too. He’s from Hawaii and he has a lot of energy. He’s really fun to be around. The CCM isn’t all devoted to Spanish, though, it’s a lot of teaching! I had to teach a lesson 3 days in- solos en español. It was very very very hard. But now that I’m a couple days older and wiser, I can plan and teach a little better. Everything I’m typing is in italics now, and I’m not sure why. Spanish keyboards are weird.  Guys, I can’t tell you how happy it made me to open up my account a couple minutes ago and see 17 different e-mails!! I’m so lucky to have so many people at home supporting me. Thank you all for the amazing amount of love you guys provide me.
I love it here. There’s nothing like the work I’m doing now and will be doing for the next two years. I’m, barely a week in and I feel like I’ve been here forever, but its not bad at all. I love working with the other missionaries! Its honestly so much fun, and Spanish is officially the best language! It’s so much more beautiful than English, even if it is a pain to remember all the conjugations. I honestly can’t wait for the day when I don’t have to translate everything I hear into English in my head. The people here are warm and friendly and nice, and the temple is right next to the CCM. It’s a beautiful temple! 
 Thank you guys so much! Please keep writing!!

 Love you all!!

Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Day One

¡Hola Familia!

I´m alive, and I made it to the MTC OK. This city is like nothing I have ever seen before, and I have been basically dropped into a Spanish-speaking country. It´s really fun to hear all the Spanish, just try to speak as best as I can, and feel the Spirit. The plane ride in was exhausting, and I had a native Guatemalan elderly woman chatting away at me on the plane ride the entire time. I did not understand one word of it.  So my new goal here in Guatemala is to pray for the gift of tongues every day. How is everyone doing? Write me on Sundays, because P-Day is on Monday!
I love you all!


Elder Jeffrey Reed