Monday, December 28, 2015

Monday, December 28, 2015


Presents from our ward mission sweet of him

 (A Felt Christmas tree my mom sent)

Wow, I can`t believe we are already ending this year!! This transfer flew by so quickly and this week especially. It was a very fun Christmas, we had a big Christmas dinner with our pension the 24th and then on Christmas day we got up early and opened presents before we went to our zone activity. President visited us with his family for a minute and then we ate pancakes (YUM!), did a white elephant gift exchange, and had a devotional. It was a very fun morning. Then we ate with some members for lunch and spent the day visiting families in the ward and less active members. Talking with my family was the absolute best gift ever! I am sooo blessed to have them. The work was a little harder this week because everyone is gone or with family for the holidays but we did see some miracles and find people to teach who are really looking for Christ in their lives. 

Christmas here in Peru is very family oriented and there is more of a focus on Christ than in other parts of the world which I loved. Everyone has their nativity and they wait to put out the baby Jesus until 12am on Christmas to represent him coming and being born. :) They all get together about 8 at night and have a party and then eat at midnight. Then they open all the presents and set off a bunch of fireworks. They go to bed about 2 in the morning and then sleep all day on the 25th. Super fun but it makes it hard as a missionary. :) 

I don`t have more time but I love you all and hope you had a great Christmas and enjoy this New Year! As you set your new goals, remember to think about what you want to do to draw closer to Christ this year and how you will become more like him. Love you all!!!!! Thank you for all the Christmas wishes!!

Hermana Cox

And BBQ cow heart! It was actually really yummy. :)

Food from our Christmas Buffet!

A Christmas tree...tropical style. :) 

My Friend, Colton, from high school is standing next to me.

My Christmas gifts!!! 

 The famous Panetòn that everyone eats here all Christmas. We have had 5 given to us in this past week and still have 3 in our room we are trying to give away. :) 

Our Christmas Dinner! Yum!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015

Hola Familia y Amigos! 

I don`t have much time this week but we`ve been super busy! Lots of Christmas preparations and little miracles every day. We had intercambios with some sisters which is always a great learning experience for me...and it also happened to be in my old area of Mayorazgo!!! That is where I started my mission and spent 3 transfers so it was so fun to go back and see so many people I love so much. I love being able to go back and see people still faithful and still progressing in the gospel. 

This week my testimony was especially strengthened of the beauty of the Plan of Salvation. I know we lived with God before this life and that we were sent here for a purpose to learn and grow. I know that this life is not the end. In Alma 40:11-12 it teaches us that after we leave this earth we are taken home to the God who gave us life and dwell in a state of happiness, peace, and rest. There is still much to do to prepare for the day that we will all be resurrected again with perfect bodies and stand before our Lord to be judged. According to our deeds and desires we will be awarded our final dwelling place, hopefully in the Celestial kingdom with our Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ, along with our family and loved ones. What great joy, what great peace.

This Christmas season I am grateful for my Savior who came and was born on this earth as he promised. He too lived and walked among men, living a perfect life and giving a perfect example. He too died and his spirit went to the Spirit World where he organized the missionary efforts for those who had died without a knowledge of him. He rose from the grave as promised and appeared to those he loved with a perfect, resurrected body. In this Christmas season he calls to us with open arms to come to him, to learn of his life, to follow his example. This Christmas season I remember His life, His promises, His love. He came, He lived, He died, and He lived again. HE is the best gift we have ever and will ever receive. I love him. I trust him. Because of him I have peace. Because of him I know who I am. Because of him I know no earthly sorrow is lasting. I know death has no sting. I love my Savior and am so grateful for him. Remember Him this season. Take time to ponder about what his life means to you and what you will give to him. 

I love you all so much and hope you have a very merry happy Christmas, filled with beautiful memories and peace. 

Hermana Cox

Monday, December 14, 2015

Monday, December 14, 2015

Hola Hola!!!!!!!

Wow what a week!!!! SUPER crazy and full of lots of activities and things going on. First of all, thank you for all the birthday wishes, I am so blessed to have such an incredible family and so many wonderful friends. It was a great day! We had our district meeting in the morning and while we were there my old ward Mayorazgo was having a Christmas party in the church. Such a beautiful birthday present to be able to see so many of them again. So many members I love and less active members that we helped return and are still active!

Here I am on my Birthday

Then we had a delicious lunch and I ate a new weird thing to put on my list! It´s the part of a fish that holds all the eggs...fried. It´s called caviar? Haha fried baby fish :) But hey, it was actually pretty good! Then my companion got sick and we ended up having to spend the afternoon in the room while she rested...but I got lots of time to study, ponder, and think. It was actually really nice. :) Then we went and visited another member who shares her birthday with me! Her name is Giselly and she is the blessing of the missionaries, she always wants to accompany us in lessons. She is the best. 

Giselly and I...the member who shares a birthday with me and the gifts she gave me.

We also had cake at the pension at night which was super delicious and so fun. I am so blessed to be surrounded by wonderful people wherever I am in the world. 

(This video was put on facebook by her Pension's family)

My birthday cake...tres leches...super yummy! And my companion at my Birthday dinner.

Blowing out my candles and my birthday dinner. :) My pensionista is the best!

Then this week we did another division with a missionary from Australia, Hermana Funaki! She is the best and I learned so much from her. We also had a fun ward Christmas party that reminded me of those back home. :) Also a stake Christmas devotional where we got to sing and I saw all my old ward of Mayorazgo again! I saw my old pensionists and her sister and little daughter, M...! Also R...!!! She got called to be a primary teacher in her ward sweet! :) So fun. 

A great week and lots of Christmas preparations everywhere. Luckily we are so busy I haven´t felt too homesick. I´m excited to spend Christmas here with all these wonderful people and get to spend it sharing the glad tidings with everyone. 

Please pray for my companion, she´s struggling a little bit since she goes home in 2 weeks and is having a hard time knowing how to handle it all. Also A... and E... R..., F..., K..., and that we can find new investigators. :) Love you all so much! Have a wonderful week!!!!

Hermana Cox

Fun pday last week. We went to the inca market. A cool statue thing and then the llama fur store. They have a bunch of them just full of fuzzy soft things...super tempted to buy a huge llama rug to bring home ;)

 I just had to send a pic of what we ate last night for dinner. I´ve mentioned before how much rice peruvians eat here...but rice pizza?! I thought it was too funny to not share. :)

Monday, December 7, 2015

Hola Familia y Amigos!!! 

What a week! We had SO much going on, but it was really fun. Lots of meetings and a multi-zone Christmas conference with Pres. Boswell. We also did a division this week.  Hermana Verdezoto went there with Hermana Sanchez and Hermana Salazar came to Monterrico with me. It was a very spur of the moment intercambio, but we felt the spirit tell us very strongly that we needed to have a division now and not wait any longer. So at about 9:30 in the morning we called to inform them and at 11 we started the division. But it was a very neat experience and I for one learned so much from Hermana Salazar. She has an amazing story.

She is the only member of her family and only has 2 years as a member. When she decided to go on a mission her parents told her they weren`t going to support her and she had to buy everything and pay for it all on her own. She still wanted to go and worked and saved up to come. Then her parents also told her that when she got back they wouldn`t pay for her studies any more either and stopped sending money for her food and transportation. She lived a few hours away with her brother because they were both studying in another city but received support from their parents. She said that before she left her brother dropped her off at the airport and her parents called real quick but they didn`t come to say goodbye. She`s been out for a month and has only received 1 or 2 emails from her dad saying hola, como estàs (hi, how are you). It is really hard for her but she is trying to focus her hardest on her responsibilities as a missionary and learn all she can. We had a great day together and I learned a lot about the power of conversion and true sacrifice and trust in the Lord. She has so much desire to learn all she can and to be the best missionary possible. I can`t wait to see the miracles that come from her service and how much growing she will do here. She`s a little miracle. Please pray for her. 

This week we have also been trying very hard to find new investigators to teach. A few days ago we decided to knock doors on a street we hadn`t visited before and weren`t having too much success. We contacted a lady who is part of a Baptist church and wasn’t super interested, but we felt that we should ask her for a referral to see if she knew of anyone else who needed our message. She gave us the name of her neighbor G... and said she probably could use some help. We went and knocked on the door and when she answered, introduced ourselves as missionaries and explained that someone had referred her name as someone who could use some strengthening at this time and we were there to see how we could help her. She just looked at us for a minute and then explained that she was going through some big challenges right now and was just about ready to give up. She told us that she had even pondered taking her life the day before because she was so burdened down by all the problems in her life. She explained that she had been praying all week long for help and strength because she didn`t know where else to turn. She told us to come back a few hours later and when we did we had an awesome visit with her where she told us her story and all the awful things going on in her life. We assured her of God`s love and that as representatives of Christ we were there to help her find her way back on the path and find the peace she so desperately needed. It was an awesome experience and really strengthened my testimony that God knows each one of us and will put people in our path that need our help. We just have to be constantly looking and working to find those lost sheep. Miracles every day. :)

The mission is the best and I love seeing the hand of God in my life so openly and obvious. Hermana Chavez sent me a letter telling me of all the miracles that are happening back in Chosica and said that J... and his mom are going to the temple this week to do baptisms for the dead! First time for them both! Also there is a less active family that will be sealed and another boy we taught that is planning on getting baptized this month! Also back in Surco, I found out that G..., our miracle contact that we found, got baptized a few weeks ago as well as another boy we were teaching named J.... Wow, the Lord is so good!

Please pray for Familia D..., Familia R..., and Familia R... who are less active members. Also G..., A..., C... who are investigators. And in general that we can find more people to teach who are ready to accept the gospel. 

I love this work and I love my Savior. I have been trying to focus my studies on him lately and giving all my time and efforts to him as my Christmas gift. I love him with all my heart. Thank you for all the thoughts and prayers, I love you all so much!! 

Hermana Cox
Monday, November 30, 2015

Hola Familia y Amigos!!!

Wow, what a week!!! It´s been so busy but I am so grateful for that because I haven´t had time to feel homesick for Thanksgiving festivities. We had a bunch of meetings and also did 2 intercambios with Hermanas in our rebaño (flock). :) An intercambio is when my companion and I split up with another companionship of Hermanas and spend 24 hours together learning from one another and helping each other. It is a great experience to learn and grow and also great practice with following the spirit to know how to help the Hermanas. Loved it. :) Our area is progressing, slowly but surely. Super rich areas are a little harder but with lots of faith and diligence we know we will see miracles. :) 

I´m glad you all had a great Thanksgiving! They don´t celebrate it here, but our Pension did make us a Thanksgiving lunch which was super sweet. Peruvian style with steak, chicken, hot dog, rice (of course), Veggies, Potato, Sweet potato, and boiled banana. With a little cream pie to top it off. Super sweet of her. :) 

I don´t have much time but we did see many miracles this week. The Lord truly is leading this work and preparing his children to receive his word. Please pray for my companion, F..., A..., J..., L..., K..., and Familia G.... 

Love you so much!!!! I´m so excited for this Christmas season to be here and be able to dedicate this season to testifying of Christ as his representative. What will you give as a gift to Christ this year? This month I am going to be studying of his life and really dedicate time to get to know and serve him so that I can better find him in my life. Love you all so much!!!!

Hermana Cox

 Samantha with her Pension (the lady who cooks her dinners), her Companion, and the other companionship that is fed by the Pension.

Samantha's little sister, Kylee, sent a letter.  Letters make Sammy very happy especially when they come from Kylee.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Monday, November 23, 2015

Hello Friends and Family!

Last day together before transfers! I`ll miss this sweet girl!

Well I decided that from now on I’m not going to try and predict what is going to happen with transfers because every time I do the farthest thing from what I thought happens. I was hoping to stay in Chosica another transfer with Hermana Chavez, but I guess the Lord has another plan for me...or a really big sense of humor. :) On Monday I received news that I was to be transferred to Monterrico where I will be serving as an Hermana Leader. I was completely shocked by the news and a little overwhelmed, but also very excited. I know that I feel very unprepared and have so many faults and weaknesses I still need to work on, but I know that the Lord will support and strengthen me in this responsibility.

Monterrico is part of the Santa Patricia Zone which is where I started my mission. It`s super fun to be back here again, but also strange to be coming back as an Hermana Leader. My area, Monterrico, literally means ¨rich mountain¨ and it`s very true. Our area is huge and super commercialized. The houses that are here are all big rich apartment buildings which makes the work a little harder. There is also a huge part of our area that we aren’t allowed to enter because it`s where  the rich and famous people of Peru live... very different than Chosica. :) But it does mean that the ward is well established and there are amazing members here. I was excited to spend Christmas in the humble dirt hills of Peru but I guess it`ll be fun to spend it here as well. The members are awesome and are always giving us comes the 15 pounds for the Holidays. :)

My companion is Hermana Verdezoto from Ecuador as well. She is awesome and we already get along so well. However, this transfer I will be killing her (missionary term meaning that she is finishing her mission this transfer) which means I’ve got one transfer to learn everything and then next transfer I’ll probably be training a new sister who comes to replace her. We have 16 sisters in our care and are responsible for their well being, helping them, loving them, doing divisions with them, making sure they are progressing as well as their areas. We have a bunch of meetings and activities we participate in, especially during the Christmas season. We also just recently had our area split so we are basically opening our area from scratch. Lots of finding new people to teach and help. It`s all a big shock and I feel a little overwhelmed, but I know the Lord will help me and guide me to do what he has called me to do. The Lord knows us individually and calls us in our imperfections to do his work. He`s been working with imperfect human beings and using them to bring about his great work since the beginning of the world and I know he knows how to do his job. My only responsibility now is to forget myself and all the reasons I may not be able to do all he has planned and just be receptive to the spirit so that I can be an instrument in his hands and he can direct me to do what he needs. We`ve already seen miracles and I know we`ll see even more. 

I`m out of time, but I love you all and I love this work. It`s absolutely amazing and there is nowhere else I’d rather be. I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving and remember how incredibly blessed we all are, especially for the gospel in our lives. Stay strong, come to know Christ, serve him with all your heart. This church is true and I know it is led by our Savior Jesus Christ through his living prophet Pres. Monson. Share this blessing with someone this Christmas season. :)

Please send prayers for F..., our investigator with a baptismal date, R... and her daughter who are reactivating, my companion and I, and all the sisters in our care. Love you all so much!! 

Hermana Cox

A recent convert from Chosica. She is the best but is struggling a little right now with finding work and helping her family come to church. They are all members but inactive. Please pray for her. 

Some fun flowers we have here. Super pretty, no?

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Monday, November 16, 2015

Well, here I am again finishing up another transfer. It´s gone by so quickly I can´t even believe it. But so much has happened and I’ve learned so much. I see miracles every day and I pray that I will never lose my wonder and gratitude for what the Lord gives us every day. 

Interviews with President Boswell

I don´t have much time but this transfer has been amazing and has taught me so much about the power and importance of this work. As I shared last week, my testimony of the Restoration has solidified and my trust in the prophet and all the Lord´s chosen servants. I KNOW that President Monson is called of God and that he receives revelation from God for our day. Many things will happen in these last days and Satan is working harder than ever. I´ve seen evidence of that more than ever in my mission. But we will never be led astray if we follow the prophets. Our thoughts not God´s thoughts and he knows what´s best. Yet he wants us to understand and be able to trust in his will. If we have a question, he has given us the resources to find answers and receive revelation and confirmation if we search with real intent. We are agents and the Lord will guide us as we search diligently to know his will. I´ve learned that in my mission and especially this transfer.

I´m out of time, but a little miracle of the week. We were trying to find a lady we had contacted and weren’t sure where she lived for sure. We tried knocking on a door and a woman answered. She was washing her clothes and didn´t really want to talk to us, but we were persistent and tried to share a little message with her, even though she wasn´t the woman we were looking for. As we kept talking she realized that we were "Mormons" and got super excited. She told us she has friends who are members and one time was at their house when the Elders came and shared a message with them. She let us in and we were able to talk with her and her 3 kids. She is super excited and we invited them to be baptized which they accepted. Now we just need to get them to come to church and they are golden. The Lord works in mysterious ways. :) 

Love you all and hope you have a great week. We´ll see where I’m writing from next week...hopefully still here in Chosica!!!!

Love you all so much!

Hermana Cox

 Our cookout for pday...Peruvian style :)

Carne y puree de papas (meat and mashed potatoes) The mashed potatoes are American style. :) Here in Peru they are really runny and smooth. 

This is a picture of Hermana Cox waving to her mom (me) as we were emailing back and forth on Monday.  It was awesome to communicate like we were texting.  Love this girl

Monday, November 9, 2015

Monday, November 09, 2015

Hola Familia y Amigos!!!!

So my email will be short, but it was an awesome week. The Lord is working with us and we are seeing miracles. This week my testimony of the Restoration has increased and I´ve felt more than ever the beauty of it all. In my personal studies I’ve searched, pondered, and prayed to better understand the significance and then as I’ve spent time teaching about prophets, the apostasy, and the miracle of the Restoration and the coming forth of the Book of Mormon.   I’ve felt the spirit testify to my heart over and over again of it’s reality and wonder. We are SOO blessed to live in this time when the gospel of Jesus Christ has been restored through a prophet and we are led and guided by prophets and apostles who receive revelation directly from Jesus Christ. The BOM is a treasure, temples are a grand blessing and the church is rolling forth into all the world so that all can participate and feel for themselves the beauty and wonder of the work of God. Wow, I love this work. It´s a miracle every day. If you don´t have a testimony of Joseph Smith, the Restoration, or the Book of Mormon, I challenge you to study about it in Preach my Gospel and the scriptures. It´s incredible.

Keep praying for us here, especially for the ward. Lots of apostasy and trying to teach and guide the members, but little by little they are strengthening their testimonies and learning the doctrine. :)

We also did a fun service project for our recent convert...not cleaning the sewer. :) We painted her house! Super fun and a nice change of routine. :) 

Love you all!!!! Have a wonderful week! I love my Savior and I know this is his work. Until next week! Please pray for J... and M... still, B... and L...that they can come to church, S... that she can keep progressing toward her baptism and come to church, B... and M... that they can keep progressing, the familia C... that they can read the BOM together as a family and prepare to be sealed in the temple, and M... that she can come to church as well and that her mom can let her participate. 

Love you so much!!!

Hermana Cox

Our twinning Peru Jerseys :)

Monday, November 2, 2015

Hola Amigos y Familia!!!

Wow, what a week for us here in El Sol!!!! One I will definitely never forget! This past week Hermana Samuels and I both completed 9 months in the mission (hard to believe) and both got to celebrate with our first baptism. I´ve always been transferred before baptisms in my other areas and don´t know what´s happened to my investigators but this is the first baptism that I’ll actually be here for and had a big part in preparing him. Hermana Samuels and her companion baptized a man named J... on Thursday and Hermana Chavez and I had J... baptism on Friday. It was a week of a lot of stressing and planning and preparing, but the results were worth every effort.  It´s amazing to finally see the fruits of all those months of working and inviting and to see a soul accept the gospel and come unto Christ. 

J... is very special to us and I feel honored to have been a part of this grand step in his life. He is the son of a less-active member and his father is not a member. He is 12 years old but very intelligent and mature for his age. The missionaries have been working with him for a long time to help him make the decision to be baptized and finally he was ready to make that step. When I first met him he wanted nothing to do with the missionaries and when his mom made him come and sit in on the lessons he complained and wouldn´t pay attention, announcing over and over how bored he was. But little by little we were able to connect with him and help him develop an interest in the gospel. He began to pray, to read the BOM, to come to church more frequently, and we saw a huge change in him. He went from telling us he didn´t even believe in God, to offering beautiful prayers in our lessons, asking the Lord to bless him with the faith necessary to be baptized. J... has always had a little fear of baptism because his mom told him of how she had to be baptized 3 times because she kept coming up out of the water and how it was cold. He was really nervous about it but worked up his faith to do it. The day of his baptism we made sure the water was nice and warm for him and talked him through what would happen. Unfortunately, our mission leader who was supposed to be directing didn´t show up for more than an hour so as we tried to entertain the family with hymns, testimonies, Mormon messages, and anything else we could think of...the water got nice and cold. Our mission leader finally got there with another member to be the witnesses and we started the program. But as soon as J... entered the water he refused to go any farther. Hermana Chavez and I tried to talk him through it and help him work up the courage to ease into the cold water. He was shaking so badly, partly because of the cold but partly because he was so nervous of getting in the water. But finally with a lot of prayer he got all the way in and his uncle baptized him...however he tried to do it a little too fast and he didn´t go all the way under. But J... was so brave and let him do it again, even though that had been his fear. But the 2nd time was perfect and J... came out of the font shaking, but smiling. He was so brave and had so much faith to trust the Lord and take this big step, even though he had so much fear. What an example for me. Then on Sunday he was confirmed and received the Holy Ghost which was also so special. What a great feeling, it motivates me to work harder and find even more people who are ready to accept the gospel and enter the waters of baptism. It´s been a long wait and a little hard at times not seeing the results of all my efforts, but if I had to work another 9 months just to have one more baptism like J... I’d do it all again in a heartbeat. You can´t put a price on things like that and every sacrifice and effort is worth it. 

Also, we celebrated Halloween! And when I say we, I mean us 3 north American sisters in our room...because Perú doesn´t really do Halloween like we do. :) There were a few kids that dressed up and went to the park for pictures and candy but mostly people were talking about how it is the holiday of the devil and we shouldn´t celebrate it. Lots of churches and people here are against it. So we decided to quietly celebrate in our room by dressing up (as much as missionaries can) and doing a trunk or treat out of our suitcases. Super fun and I’ll send pics next week. :) 

Halloween! I´m Minnie mouse, Hermana Samuels is a dalmation, and Hermana Ekins is an Indian´s as creative as we could get as missionaries. :) 

My "trunk" for our trunk or treat. :)

My candy loot...Not quite as big as other years, but still super fun. :)

My Calabanza! Pumpkin...well orange because that´s what I could find. :) 

Please pray for S..., an investigator 17 years old who has accepted baptism. D... M... who needs to come to church. B... who also needs to come to church and receive an answer about whether or not she should be baptized. J... and M... that they can stay strong and active in the church and continue progressing. And M... and B... who are friends of J... and are investigating now too. 

I love you all so much and hope that you are all doing well. The year is flying by but I am loving and enjoying every day here in paradise. :) I know the Savior loves us and that it is only through following his example that we may be saved and enjoy eternal happiness as families. I love him and I love his work. (2 Nephi 31:17) My ponderize scripture of the week. :)

Hermana Cox

Our Pday at El Bosque :)

More of pday at el bosque

Here are pics of our pday at "El Bosque" (The forrest). It´s a beautiful country club with a pool, all sorts of sports, a lake, and tons of space to run and explore. Super fun and we all really enjoyed it. We also had a bbq peruvian style. A huge slab of cow on a grill with a bunch of potatoes. :) Super yummy and a nice break from the usual rice and chicken. :)