Sunday, June 29, 2014


Me and my twin Mannequin.

The memorial for the battle that Colombia won for its independence from Spain.
Memorial from a distance

The district.

So I am no longer in Duitama, I´m in Bogota in the offices of the church for the mission.   This time I'm in the actual city of Bogota, not like last time when I was in Suba, which is more of a suburb than the actual city.  I am working for President Andelin as the Financial Secretary.   It means that I´m in charge of all finances for the mission.   I have to take care of all the missionaries funds as far as receiving reimbursements and their normal allotments are concerned, but I also have to pay the bills every month for the houses and all the bills that come in for the houses such as water, electricity and gas...  But I like it.  It´s different and it´ll be fun once I get the hang of it.  My new companion is Elder Alzamora.  He´s from Peru, but he speaks somewhat fluent English, he understands a lot more than he says but it´s okay that´s how I was when I was learning more at the beginning.  I work more with the mission president, but I only see him maybe 2-3 times during the week.  I think  I´ll like it once I figure out how to do everything.  But the last 2 weeks have been a blur, the time in the office goes by super fast and I´m happy to be here, even though the work is different.   Ï´ll be here for at least 4-5 months  but I have a new assignment so it´s fine, I just go with the flow when it comes to getting an emergency transfer.  I've already had 5 in the mission, which means that I haven´t had a single normal transfer in all my mission, and when I leave from this assignment it´ll be an emergency transfer as well, so I´m sure I´ll have at least 6 in the mission, and I think that´s probably a record.  We don´t go tracting because 1) it doesn't work in the capital, and 2) because there is no time to go out and do it, we have about 3 hours in the night at times to go out and do regular work.  But I´m happy that I can see how the mission works from a financial standpoint. My new companion is Elder Alzamora, I forgot to get a picture with him but I´ll have it before next week.  I sent the pictures of the apartment and the office, at least the parts that I use.  Elder Ccanccappa stayed in Duitama, I came to Bogota with Elder Balzer. 

I didn't get to say goodbye to anyone in Duitama and I was super sad, I at least wanted to say goodbye to Nelson, after what we've been through together with his friends all accepting the talks and his mom dying, I didn't want to leave him alone, but I didn't have the time to say anything.  And yes, yes it was super sudden. The baptism for Diana was great, and I was super happy that we were able to help her get to that point, but with the death of Nelson´s mom, that was  a blow for him and was a testimony builder for Ccanccapa and I about the truthfulness of the gospel.  It was a hard thing for Nelson since she had lived with him for more than 8 years and because it was his mom.  But he was with us for the next few days all the time, making visits, joining us in Ward council, everything to just throw himself into the missionary work so that he wasn't alone in the house.  I was planning to do some more service with him this week to help him out. Just keep praying for Nelson and his friends, we were teaching probably 7-9 of them.  I´m a little sad to have left so suddenly that I also didn't have time to say goodbye to a few members and investigators that I had been close too in Duitama, but I´ll be able to visit them sooner or later.  Oscar got married today to Jessica, I have to call my companion in Duitama to ask how it went but I hope that he got past the temptation that his family may have presented him.  I know that the work will continue to go on and that the wonderful people of Duitama will make some great changes in that area.  I already miss them.    

I got the boxes for my birthday and Easter, and I got the Western Union today.  I´m going to buy some ingredients and I found the recipe to make some good pizza crust so I think in the next 2 weeks or so I´m going to buy the real ingredients to make a pizza or patty melts, we´ll see which one is better.

My desk with Elder Warren being himself.
P.S. They do not have secretary's day here so maybe we can start a new tradition...therefore now being a secretary, gifts are accepted.

Catholic church in a city close by.

Chapel in Duitama.
The family that took us to see all the sites in Duitama.

Some awesome desserts that we found in Iza, which is known for the desserts that they make.

Elder Balzar going back home to California.

Scenery from memorial
The memorial/

The kitchen in my new place.  I like it
because  it has an oven.


Diana's Baptism and Nelson

Flowers for my mom.
More flowers for my mom.

Sunday, June 22, 2014


I only have a few minutes to write so this is going to be a little abbreviated and on Monday I´m going to organize with my companion so I'll be able to write more.  But I´m doing good.  Last week we had a baptism, which I wouldn't have told you about before because I didn't know about it until Wednesday when the investigator Diana told us that she wanted to get baptized and we were like, really..... But she had all the lessons and so on Saturday we baptized her with the rest of the ward.  But she is a friend of Nelson who is probably the most active, less active member I have ever seen.  It´s really because of him that she got baptized and because of that he is returning super fast to activation so that he can be a good example to her and to the other members. 

 I downloaded the YouTube video Jason sent of his mission because it's easier than trying to find a program in the computer that can read the file that he sent from his iPhone, I don´t know why the programs on this computer can´t read the video but it's all good.  So hopefully this week I can finally watch it so that I know where he is going on his mission.  But I am very proud of him and happy for him.  Jason better get all the hugs in that he can because after that he has to wait at least 2 years to get another one unless the mission president's wife decides to give him a hug which is nice.  I'm happy we are a "huggy" family.  

When I get back I¨ll play the piano in sacrament, that's what I've been doing for the past 8 months so it's all good.  I'm keeping up my skills and talent.  

Oh yeah,  Nelson the guy I told you about earlier, had a hard week, he had the baptism which lifted his spirits, but yesterday in the morning his mom died of a heart attack and it was super rough for him.  We were there in his house when he received the call that it happened and we did everything we could to help him.  He asked me to give him a blessing and it was 100% guided by the spirit.   So please say prayers for Nelson.  

P.S.  Aunt She-She and Uncle Rich, thank you for the Western Union!  




Saturday, June 7, 2014


Me and my Comp going to do some service.
As for the packages I did get them and I have videos of opening my packages, they are pretty funny.  I am super grateful for the Cheez-its and the pens.  They are super delicious and I needed new pens.  I have been using the Twix and Butterfingers to make delicious Blizzards with the ice-cream that I bought.  I was super happy for the Butterfingers, they were appreciated by all, especially the other Gringo in the apartment.  We share everything, except the Cheez-its, I don´t share Cheez-its.   When I go to Bogota I was told that I have another package waiting for me there so we´ll see what I have received from all of you. 
Marriage of Camilo and Anna

Today on our p-day we did nothing, just bought our food for the week, cleaned the house since it's the first 
p-day of the month and slept a little, next week we´re going to go to another part of Boyaca and see what we can find.  The baptism for Omair and Richard didn't go because they still aren't ready, they don´t have a strong base in the gospel to warrant the baptism still, so we´re waiting another week or 2 to prepare them and give them that base that they need. But this week we found a less active that is pretty cool, called Fernei.  He was baptized about 7 years ago and went inactive a little after, but he recognizes the need for the gospel and is ready to start the process again.  We had a great lesson where we explained 2 Nefi 4, which is one of my favorite chapters regarding spiritual strength and the desire to raise oneself up.  Otherwise we go to Bogota this week for the zone council (meeting with all the missionaries in the area) so that will be fun.

My condolences to the Stuart Family.  Mr. Stuart was an awesome, funny man!   

Not much else this week.  I can't wait to hear about Jason's mission call.  Hopefully he gets to go to Medellin here in Colombia.  If not, then I say Argentina.  

Have a great week!

Gift from member of area.
Lamp that a family gave me.
Flower from Duitama.

Letters from everyone!!!!!!!