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LDS Missionary - Cali Colombia May 2013 - May 2015

Saturday, May 30, 2015


Hey All.

So... This is it. Last letter. I’ll be home Tuesday. This past week and a half I have not been able to proselyte because of an expired visa. Although it was not the ideal situation, I hope I was able to be a blessing for the mission back on the home front here in the office, organizing and doing the missions 40 year anniversary, and starting up the missions family history program. I would be lying if I told you all that I’m not nervous at all. At random times I get this pit feeling in my stomach. It’s all good though. We must continue forward in our lives, passing through many stages with our "hands to the plow," not looking back. I hope to not look back... There are plenty of things to do, and although I feel like my mission was the most important thing I have ever done in my life, I know there are many things ahead of me. I have not arrived at my destination. Paul once said to his son in the gospel, Timothy, "I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith." I too say that I have fought a good fight, but I have not finished my course, and I will continue to keep the faith. The truth is, I have learned many things here, and I hope to have been a blessing to Heavenly Fathers children, and been able to change lives, and in the end I know that most of all, my own life has changed. Knowledge, understanding and comprehension of our Heavenly Father have I gained here, and I hope that the Lord will continue to enlighten my mind "like the dews from heaven" throughout my live. The testimony I have I feel is very simple. I know that there is a God. This God is my Heavenly Father. He truly does love me. His son is Jesus Christ, a real person who is alive today. I know that he did all and more than what the scriptures say he did. I testify that Joseph Smith saw what he said he saw. I love him for what he did and for being humble enough to be obedient to be an instrument in God’s hands to restore this marvelous church and gospel. This church has power and authority to administer and perform ordinances in the name of Jesus the Christ. Ordinances that will bring us the blessings we all need in this life and the eternity’s to come. I love the gospel. I know we will be happy as we strive to understand it and live it. The words I treasure most and hope to hear one day are these spoken by the Savior. "Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Enter into the joy of thy Lord." I say these things humbly. In the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.

Elder Robert Michael Dean II

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Experience in Buga.

Hey all.
Hope you had a good week. This week I was in a town called Villa Gorgona. It's about 30 minutes outside of Cali.  There are 2 elders there, and they have to travel the 30 min to Cali to go to church since they don't have a chapel out there yet. It was good, and after I was 2 days in Buga. Buga is cool. It's a branch as well? but it's a pretty strong branch and there are 6 missionaries total in the city/branch. Anyway, all in all, I'm doing pretty good. This week in Buga I was with the two elders (Elder Vaca and Elder Nielson). We were looking for a contact they had done the other day, and we rang the doorbell, and her son was looking out the window, and told us she wasn't home, and as we talked to him, he wasn't showing much interest. When we started walking away, a man sitting in a chair outside his house had been watching and listening, and called us and said, "Hey! I want to listen. Can you guys come in and help me?" We walked in to the house of this guy, pretty big guy, and not looking like the friendliest fellow. We sat down and presented ourselves and listened to him. He expressed himself, and told us about some of the difficulties and challenges he was having in his life and about his past. As I sat there listening to him, my mind was filled with a specific chapter in the Book of Mormon (Alms 7) as he expressed his desire to listen to us and learn more about God. We left him a Book of Mormon with the chapter to read, and took down a day to go back. I was very grateful for the opportunity to be placed in that moment, in that spot, and I know the gospel will fill him and help him in every way. Anyway, just a short little experience from this week. I hope you all have a good week. I'll send some pictures and write more next week.

Elder Dean

Found another one of Rico's third cousins twice removed in Villa Gorgona.

President Troches invited us over to lunch.
He was President Prince's counselor, and is pretty much the best.

Shoes going strong!

Sunday, May 10, 2015

Recognizing the Hand of the Lord.

Hey all. How's it going? So transfer week is over finally. Receiving new missionaries, getting everybody in their new areas in one piece, and to top it off my 16th and last leadership council on Thursday. Friday we did divisions with missionaries, and here we are, Saturday, good old pday. Next week starts the last push on the divisions with the Elders. These last few weeks I'll be in Tulua, a town called Villa Gorgona, and plans for 2 days in Ipiales and 2 days in Popayan. Should be quite the skype call tomorrow haha. All in all, I'm doing good. I'm finishing up the Book of Mormon again. I'm in Mormon, and something really interesting that I'm seeing with the Nephite civilization is that one reason for their destruction is their lack of recognizing the hand of the Lord in their lives, giving them chance after chance to repent and sparing them from their enemies, "and behold they did harden their hearts against the Lord their God." In the footnotes, the word for this is ingratitude. (Mormon 3:3). I am trying to see and recognize the hand of the Lord more. Hope we can all do the same. Love you all. Talk more later.

Elder Dean.

With the new missionaries at Cristo Rey.

Companion Swap.

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Last Transfer.

Howdy ya'll. Hope everybody is doing good. This week I was in a bus a total of 24 hours, traveling to Narino and back haha! Tuesday and Wednesday we were in Ipiales (thought about jumping the border to Ecuador, but I didn't haha jk) and Thursday and Friday we were in Pasto. Not going to lie, it was quite a chilly week. I was pretty cold, but here I am in Cali, in the office again, sweating. Ha! Transfers are this week, and my new companion is Elder Lyle. We will be companions our last 4 weeks of the mission, and we'll go home together. We got to the field together, and we ll leave together. Elder Lyle is from Oregon. He's  pretty cool. I'll be here in the office these next few days for the transfers. I'll probably travel again Thursday, and probably with Elders here in Cali. Anyway, my time is up. I'd better hop off, but I'll send some pictures. Mothers day is coming up. Hope you all have something special planned for your mothers! haha There's still time to think of something - it's not too late. Talk more next week.

Elder Dean.


It was a good transfer with my companion Elder Rojas

My new companion, Elder Lyle.  We are in this to the end! 

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Lesson Learned: Charge The Cell Phone

Hey all. What's going on?
Hope you all had a good week. Another week has come and passed. Such a crazy thing... Traveling has turned so weird- the time just seems to cruise on by... different people, faces, different missionaries every day- it just goes on. This week I went to Pradera on Tuesday. It's a little town 30 minutes outside of Palmira. Then I was in a little town called Cerrito on Wednesday, also a little place about 40 minutes outside of Palmira, little house chapel and all. Thursday I was in Palmira, and then Friday I finished up here in Cali in Vista Hermosa. Funny story: Thursday night a member dropped me off on the highway headed to Cali so I could jump on a bus and be back in Cali Thursday night. Sometimes I have to travel alone, and when I got on the bus, I called Elder Mejia and Roman, the secretaries, to tell them to wait for me in the terminal in Cali, and that I would get in about 10:20. I hung up and my phone died, so I got into the terminal in Cali 10:20 at night, but there were no Elders in sight... I called them from a public phone to ask them where they were, but they didn't answer, so I just hopped in a taxi and got home. When I got home, another secretary was there, and was like, "What are you doing here?! Elder Roman and Mejia went to go looking for you, and quite a few people are trying to locate you." haha. The whole office thought I had gotten lost or something, and my companion Elder Rojas was looking all over Palmira for me. Lesson learned- CHARGE THE CELL PHONE haha. Anyway, other than that, everything going good. I'm here in the office having a pretty chill pday. I cut my hair, ate dominos for lunch, passed out on the couch in the living room for a few hours, and now just writing everyone real quick. Here in the office ready to start the last week of the transfer.  Pretty much all the transfers are in, but who knows if there will be any last minute changes. We'll see next week. This week coming up: Tuesday-Friday we'll be in Ipailes and Pasto. The big bus rides coming up. Always the longest trip. Love you all. Hope you have a good week. Thanks for the prayers and thoughts. Until next week.

Elder Dean.

Elder Herrera (Bolivia) Elder Deterline (Utah) 

Elder Ludwig (SL) Elder Mamani (Bolivia)

Friday, April 24, 2015

There Is Always Time.

Hey all. How's it going? Things here are coming right along. It's crazy to think that there are only 2 more weeks left in this transfer.... This week we had a change in plans, and instead of going north, we went to Jamundi on Tuesday, and then down to good old Popayan Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. I love Popayan. This time I ran into quite a few people. It was crazy to see familiar faces. Super special. This next week we now plan on going north to Palmira and Tulua, and then we plan on the last week of the transfer going south to Pasto and Ipiales. We'll see how it turns out. While traveling, I've been thinking about how difficult it can become to do the little things, like daily scripture reading. But these past few days I've been thinking, and I really I'm going to make the time. I know that we all have busy days and weeks, but there is always time for the little things if we set a little time aside. Even if it's only 5 or 10 min. Anyway, I love you all. I hope you all have a really good week. I'll try to write more next week.
Elder Dean

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

23 Months Out.

Hey everybody! 
What's up everyone? Hope you all had a good week. Here I am. It's Saturday. Just finishing up my pday. We got in from Buenaventura today at 11 in the morning, and I passed out until about 1, ate lunch, and it's been a pretty chill pday. I really enjoyed conference. I think some of my favorite talks were Elder Eyrings (Saturday morning and Priesthood). He's the best. I really hope to have, one day, the spiritual strength and confidence he has. I liked a talk by a 70 that talked about Shiblon in the Book of Mormon, and that we should all try to be more like him. Many other talks were very powerful as well. This week, Tuesday and Wednesday, I was with the elders from Israel, here in Cali, and then we went to zone leader council on Thursday. We changed the logo, phrase, and focus of the mission, and I feel happy to have been a part of it. We gave a training Thursday as well to the sister missionary leaders. Friday morning, we woke up real early and headed to the coast. Buenaventura. I went in divisions with Elder Silverio and Elder Darby. We worked hard and had a pretty crazy day. You never know what adventure you'll have in good old Buenaventura. We were able to teach 11 lessons in one day. Good stuff. Anyway, so we'll be here in the office tomorrow and Monday, and then Tuesday we're off to the north. Tulua and Palmira. Traveling like crazy. Anyway, I know that the mission is coming to a close. It's kinda just back there in my mind, but let's be honest, it hasn't really hit me yet, and that's just fine. Traveling and working hard. The classic question from everybody, "How much time do you have in the the mission?" 23 months... They always react like, "Oh! You're already home!" I think I'll start lying and telling people I've only been out a year. Haha jk. Love you all. Hope you have a good week. Until next Saturday.

Elder Dean.

 Elder Marin (Argentina) Elder Quezada (Utah)

Elder Alvarez (Chile) Elder Maciel (Paraguay)

Elder Silverio (Brazil) Elder Darby (California)