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LDS Missionary - Cali Colombia May 2013 - May 2015

Monday, December 30, 2013

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!!

Hey everybody how's it going? Hope your Christmas was awesome, and I hope that you all have a fun new year tomorrow! New Years here is fun. Tons of drunks, and I've only seen one stabbing so far - doing good... So my Christmas was... Normal. Haha! So Christmas Eve we visited some people, and had Christmas messages, and we got invited to eat with the branch president at about 6. We ate dinner and had typical Christmas food  - Popayan style with the president. After that we headed to Parque de Caldas to take a few quick pics on our way to our last appointment. It was all lit up like a wanna be temple square haha. We ate dinner with Familia Oime (Hernando my convert and his family). We ate dinner with them and then shared a Christmas message with a baptismal invitation for Omaira. She said she didn't want to do it, and after a long conversation we found out some fears that she has... She decided to think about it, and maybe have a date in January. When we looked at our watched it was 10:10 Aahhhh! We had permission to be out until 10, but our area is super far away from the house. When we headed out about 10:10, it started to POUR rain. Never seen it rain so hard. So we waited for a taxi in the pouring rain until about 10:20, and nothing showed up. We ended up walking/running to the house in the pouring rain, and got home at like 10:40 soaking wet. We changed clothes, and then Elder Menendez found a scrabble board in the closet. So I taught elder Menendez and Mosqueira how to play. I won :) Christmas day was normal I suppose... We went around and shared Christmas messages with some inactives, and then talked with the zone leaders and their converts for a while, and then went home at 9. We got home, planned for a bit, and the I crashed super tired... Merry Christmas! haha. The 26th - the Skype call at night was SUPER awesome. Great to see everybody and talk for what seemed like 5 min. Can't wait to talk for Mothers Day! Anyway, Happy New Year to all - hope it's a good one. I'm entering my "dead year" 2014. I'll be in Colombia the whole year... Love you all! I'll send some pics here... Hope you guys are safe and happy to finish up these holiday seasons. Gotta go. Talk to you more next week!!!

Elder Dean
 Familia Oime

 Parque de Caldas

 Christmas Dinner - Popayan Style 

 Christmas Eve

Monday, December 23, 2013

Feliz Navidad!

Feliz Navidad Parseros!!!!!

Merry Christmas everybody! Today is Monday the 23rd. Christmas is in 2 days... Crazy! So this week was good... It has been a little hard to stay busy, but it's all good! Just gotta keep doing your best. So this week we had the branch Christmas party, and when we showed up, only a few investigators and members were there... CRAP! Nobody had really organized anything. So Elder Menendez and I saved the day when all the people showed up with a few games for everybody. We kept it fun. While we were trying to keep everybody entertained, Elder Mosqueira made calls and got music and speakers to the church, and so when we left the party at 9 (when we had to go) there was music, and miraculously food showed up, too! Party saved. WHEW. Super stressful, buts it's all good. Sunday night there was a movie in the church, too. We brought some investigators, and the movie was Ephraim's Rescue again. So I watched it again, and it was just as good and the first time haha! Other than that the week was pretty normal... I hope you all enjoy the snow and the Christmas time with everybody. This Christmas I have homework for you... Christmas Eve or Christmas day, dust off your bible ;) and open up to Luke 2 and read the chapter. After you're done with that, pick up the Book of Mormon and read Alma 7:10-12. That's your homework! I'm grateful for my Savior and this opportunity I have to be serving a mission here in Colombia. I'm grateful for Christmas and the opportunity it gives us to remember our blessings, and remember the birth of our Savior... Also, because I get to call home :) Thanks for all of your prayers and support, especially during this Christmas season. Merry Christmas. I love you all!!

Elder Dean

Conference in Cali and a Baptism.

Hey there everybody. How's it going!? Hope you all had a good week. I had a great one... So this Thursday we had a conference in Cali, so we had to wake up at 4 o'clock in the morning and get on a bus for the 3 hour bus ride to Cali. Is was cool being back in Cali for the day. Tons of people, hot, Salsa music blasting, smelling a little funny... good old Cali :) Memories from my first 3 transfers. The conference was good. It was from about 9-5. We listened to President and Sister Prince talk, and the APs too. We ate an awesome lunch and had a little talent show. Every zone had a little play. My part in our play was to sing "White Christmas" with the other gringos in Popayan. It was fun. We also watched a movie called "Ephraim's Rescue." It's about pioneers, and it's made by the same people who did 17 Miracles. It was excellent. You should defiantly watch it. So then we hoped on the bus back to Popayan, and got back in the nighttime. 
This Saturday we had a baptism service with Hernando. He's 80 years old and was part of another church for more than 30 years. After a long process, he decided that he wanted to be baptized. The baptismal service was excellent. Presidente Lalo Baptized him. We invited Elder Lameraux and Elder Mancilla to the service because Elder Mancilla plays a few hymns on the piano haha. Elder Lameraux and I also did a special number. We sung a hymn- the first two verses in Spanish and the last one in English. The spirit was super strong. Sunday, Hernando gave me a heart attack. He got to sacrament meeting at 9:15- just in time to be confirmed. Elder Mosqueira confirmed him. It was a good blessing, too. So transfers came in last night and Elder Mosqueira and I will be together another transfer, so we'll be together 3 months. That probably means I'll be here in Popayan 4 and a half months, but who knows! This morning during personal study, I finished the Book of Mormon. I have been reading it one chapter in English, and then right after the same chapter in Spanish. After I finished it today, I just want to bear my testimony that I know it's true. I am without doubts in my mind that the Book of Mormon is true, and that this church is also true. I'm very grateful for the gospel in my life, and all of you. I'm very blessed. I have to log off and start the week, but I love you all and I hope you all have a safe and good week. Talk to you more next week.
Elder Dean

 The street where I live here in Popayan

Baptism for Hernando

 Getting back with an old pal in Cali, Elder Wilcox and I

Kid's activity last week. Don't worry, I'm not mad- camera caught me before I smiled and I have a sucker in my mouth

Another area of Popayan

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Reason For The Season.

Que mas Parseros?
Hey everybody. How's it going? Hope you all had an excellent week! So this week was pretty good... This week we were in the hospitals and clinics Tuesday and Wednesday, like 6 hours, trying to figure out if we could help Elder Mosqueira feel a little better. He hasn't been feeling too hot... The medical system isn't quite the same here as it is in the United States. Not too organized- that's for sure... But it's all good. Eventually we found out that he's got some parasites. Poor guy. He took a few pills a few days ago, and he seems to be feeling a little bit better, so that's good. Saturday we had a pretty cool activity with a few members of the church and all the missionaries here in Popayan for about 100 little kids. They are are super poor, but Saturday morning from about 8-11 we had an activity. We played a bunch of games with them and gave them candy. Some sisters combed hair and painted faces, and then they feed them all some rice and chicken. Happy kids- that's for sure! I took some pictures, but I forgot my camera, so I'll have to send some pictures next week. So Sunday was good and a little rough at the same time... The branch here I'm in is pretty weak. We had about 40 people in church Sunday. Not too hot. It can get a little frustrating at times, not having much help from the branch and members, but we gotta help everybody we can. That's why we are here as missionaries. So I watched the Christmas devotional last night in English with some other gringos here in Popayan. I liked it a lot. Listing to Christmas hymns in English was fantastic. I liked that they really focused the talks on the Savior, too. We should all be thinking about Jesus this Christmas season, and the remarkable things he did for us. Through him we can be happy and find peace, I can testify of that. Thank you for the prayers and thoughts. I love you all. Even though I miss you all a lot, I'm grateful for the opportunity I have to be here in Colombia serving my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. This gospel is remarkable. I'm grateful for it in my life. I love you all and I hope you all have a good week and enjoy the snow :) Talk to you all next week. 

Elder Dean

Monday, December 2, 2013

First Baptism In Popayan.

Hey Everybody,

What's up? So I hope you all had a good Thanksgiving! Was just a normal day here in Popayan for me... But its all good. I'm grateful for a lot of things, and that's what Thanksgiving's all about. So this past week we had a baptismal service. We baptized Mauricio, and the other elders in the apartment baptized a girl named Mabel. It was a good service for sure. Presidente Lalo baptized my investigator, and Elder Eliason baptized his investigator. Sunday morning I confirmed Mauricio in sacrament meeting... Always sketchy giving a blessing like that in front of about 60 people... My first time was worse though! In Cali there were more people because I'm in a branch here in Popayan. Other than that the week was pretty normal! Haha Miracle nothing too crazy happened during the week. Only a few drunks tried bothering me this week, but I think my Spanish might be getting better because when the drunks ask me where I'm from I tell them, "Medallin Colombia," and they leave me alone... Haha! I'll send a picture of us with Mauricio too :) Hey, I hope you all have a good week... And hope everybody can enjoy the holiday season without getting too stressed out or anything... Remember what Christmas is all about, and I promise that your Christmas will be awesome!! I'm in a division right now with Elder Eliason. We are having a good time... Haha Always quoting Dumb and Dumber and taking about sports... Well I gotta go cut my hair, so I gotta cut it short... Love you all. Thanks for all the prayers and support. Have a good week!!!
Elder Dean

Monday, November 25, 2013

6 Months Out.

Hey Fam. Friends.

What's up? So this week was pretty good. Friday I completed 6 months in the mission.... Cool. Ha It wasn't that big of a deal. But still cool! The same day was Elder Menendez's birthday. He didn't wanna celebrate or anything, but I ordered a pizza to celebrate the birthday/6 months. Then I put some candles in the pizza for his birthday, and we sang happy birthday to him. We ate the pizza and then went to bed... whooo!!! haha Super exciting. I almost set the house on fire lighting the candles. I had to use toilet paper and the stove to get a flame haha. Anyway, p-day today was pretty normal. We got up studied till 10, then went and bought some groceries. After, we played soccer with the missionaries here in Popayan at a little artificial turf field for an hour or two. The little field was slippery because of the rain, and I took a ball right off the face. Fun stuff. Haha. So I am hoping to have some baptisms coming up here soon, so hopefully I'll have some good news to write y'all here in the future. The guy at the internet cafe I'm in right now was blasting Guns and Roses, and now hes blasting Dubstep. I should probably head out haha. It's official- Dubstep has made it to Colombia. Oh shoot. Haha. Anyway, love you all. Better hop off. But I hope you guys all have a good Thanksgiving. I'm pretty sure my Thanksgiving will just be a normal day.... Fun! It's all about remembering your blessing though... Read the Book of Mormon and go to church this Sunday! Haha love you all. Have a good week.

Elder Dean
Happy 6 months with my best friend - the electric mosquito killer.

 Elder Menendez, the birthday kid, enjoying the pizza.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Popyan: Week 2

Hello everybody.
How's it going? I'm here in Popayan, starting my 3rd week here... I'm getting a little more comfortable here in the area. So this week was pretty normal... Me and Elder Mosqueira are working hard trying to find people to teach. This week we stopped by an inactive old lady's house... She is super old, and we started talking to her about why she hasn't been going to church these past few years... She talked forever! While she was telling Elder Mosqueira her life story, her friend that lives with her, and another inactive came in and started talking to me... The other old lady was super crazy, and I tried giving here a pamphlet of the church, but she started crossing herself and saying the Lord's Prayer... While that was going on the other guy, super inactive as well, was drunk as a skunk shouting/reading some random part of the Book of Mormon... Elder M and I looked at each other and started busting up laughing, and to recover I said, "Hermana sorry it's just that Elder Mosqueiras accent is just too funny." We couldn't stop laughing. It was horrible. I felt so bad... Maybe it was a stress relief or something haha. Today for p-day we played soccer with all of the missionaries here in Popayan We we playing normal fun and all, when somebody had the bright idea to play Gringos vs. Latinos.... I was like, "Oh gosh, this is going to go well..." And then a miracle happened. Us gringos won 5 games in a row! I have no idea what happened. We played out of our minds haha. And an even bigger miracle happened. I scored 3 goals. Not gonna lie, I was shocked at myself, and we can probably bet that it might not happen again haha. But I am getting better. Anyway fam, love you tons. Hope you all have a good week. Gotta goooooo. So lame. Writing time flies by so fast. Talk to you all next week. Maybe I'll send a pic :) Love you!!!

Elder Dean

Monday, November 11, 2013

Popayan: Week 1.

Why hello there everyone...
How's life in the good old U S of A? Hope you guys are all doing good. So my first week here in Popayan was good. Last Tuesday I hopped on a bus and drove through the country sides and got here to Popayan in 2 or 3 hours. So here in Popayan my area is pretty small, especially because half of the area isn't houses- it's shops and stores. Here it is pretty sunny in the mornings, and then pretty much every afternoon it gets real gloomy and rains most days, too. There have been 2 thunderstorms with thunder SO loud! Haha Crazy loud! That's cool. I had to buy a sweater here because my first two nights I was used to Cali weather - nice and hot - so I got pretty cold my first two nights. I'm getting used to it now, though, so that's good. So the sacrament meeting was pretty interesting. There were about 60 people in attendance in the branch. Super weird. After that, the second class was pretty dang interesting, too. The teacher taught some good false doctrine to investigators and everybody... Haha nice! You always find that here though - false doctrine like crazy. 
I'm living here in the apartment, and sharing the branch with the zone leaders here in Popayan: Elder Eliason and Elder Menendez. They are pretty chill guys. They are both new here this transfer, and so am I, so my comp is the vet here in the branch with 5 or 6 weeks... Haha stressful! The other Elders had a baptism this week. Awesome. I leaned over to test the water before the baptism and dropped my agenda and everything into the baptismal font. Nice goin' Elder Dean! Elder Eliason almost died laughing. I wasn't the happiest camper, haha but it's all good! Anyway, gotta head out. Didn't have much time to write this week because we couldn't find internet and we have to end p-day at 6... Sad :( Anyway, I'll write more next week, and I hope you all have a good week. Read the scriptures and go to the temple if you can this week! Love you all. Ciao!

Elder Dean.
 Leaving Cali was tough! Lots of people I'm going to miss.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Musical Chairs and Transfers.

Hey Everybody!

SO I gotta make it quick. Today is absolutely nuts! I got a call at 9:30 last night, and I'm getting transferred tomorrow. I have to be in a big bus station before 7'o'clock tomorrow morning. So I'm headed out of the big city, Cali Colombia, and headed to a town called Popayan... I don't know much. I know it's about 2 hours via bus away, and that the climate is cooler. There aren't any wards there. It's all branches, and they are putting a plan in motion right now to make it a stake! We'll see what's up! So this week was pretty normal, other than that big news bomb I got yesterday... Hope you guys all had a good Halloween. Halloween here in Colombia isn't too pretty! haha. It was a rough day for mission work, that's for sure... Anyway, 2 days ago we had the ward Halloween party with all the primary. When we got there, they started and told us missionaries that we were in charge of the games... Alrighty then! So me and Elder Wilcox thought real fast, and we started to play musical chairs... Only one problem. We didn't have any music! So me and Elder Wilcox had to sing together and stop together for the music... The only songs we could think of on the spot were the itsy bitsy spider, take me out to the ballgame, and popcorn popping... Haha! It was good though. Dang - sorry I seriously gotta cut it way short. I gotta do tons of stuff get ready to head out tomorrow to Popayan! I'm gonna miss it here in Cali, in Limonar, that's for sure. Rough stuff... Anyway, my companion will be Elder Mosqeuira. He's from Argentina. I've met him a few times, but I don't know him too well. We'll see! Love you all tons. I'll write more next week. Ciao!

Elder Dean

Monday, October 28, 2013

Baptism and a Birthday.

Hey fam, friends - all!

SO this week was pretty slow going until Saturday hit... Then BOOM. Haha. During the week I had a division. I went with Elder Walker in his area in Ciudad Cordova, here in Cali. He has less time than me in the mission, but he only got lost like 2 times. Haha Poor guy. He's awesome, though. I love teaching with him. Anyway, normal week until Friday night. Jaison called me and told me he didn't want to get baptized... So Saturday morning we went to his house and found him and Ingrid, his girlfriend, there. We sat down talked for a bit, and then started a serious talk. I talked to him and told him that he was just scared, but it's normal to be scared before something like this. He told me "No, no, no, I can't." I have been teaching him since I got here, and there are quite a few reasons why he wouldn't be baptized. But I was getting tired of being in this cycle with him, so I straight up told him, "I'm baptizing you today, and Ingrid, if you feel like you would like to be baptized today, I'll baptize you as well, but I'm baptizing Jaison today..." They looked at each other, asked for a minute, and then 2 or 3 minutes after came back and asked me, "What time?" I said, "We will do it at 3'o'clock today" ( in 3 or 4 hours). So Elder Caja and I ran out of the house to go grab the Bishop's keys, grab baptismal clothes, get to the chapel to fill the baptism font - all in 3 hours. Elder Caja set off the church alarm when we went to fill the baptismal font - it was such a crazy 3 hours. Anyway, we got the baptismal font going, got members informed, and went and picked up Jaison and Ingrid. 
We picked them up, and on the way to get in a taxi, Jaison's dad showed up, and I was like "Ohhhh noooo." Jaison's dad isn't a fan, and is one of the reasons for him not getting baptized, etc. But Jaison told him, "I'm going to get baptized, "and hopped in the taxi. I was super proud of him! So we got to the church, got them some baptismal clothes, and had a really nice baptismal service. There weren't tons of people, but the spirit was super strong. Jaison gave me a big hug after I pulled him out of the water with tears in his eyes. I had to baptize Ingrid twice - her hand came out of the water haha! It's all good though. Super cool. Jaison's mom even showed up for the baptism. So Sunday morning for the confirmation I was at the sacrament table to bless the sacrament when the meeting started, and Jaison and Ingrid hadn't shown up... Man, I was stressin' like nuts - praying my hardest. Right as the bishop called Jaison and Ingrid names to come up and get confirmed, they walked in... WHEW. So we started with Ingried. Elder Wilcox confirmed her, and then it was Jaison's turn. The bishop asked me to do it. So I confirmed Jaison (in front of everybody) a member of the church with a blessing. My first confirmation. My hands were shaking pretty bad. Anyway, Saturday and Sunday were great and stressful, too. 
Today is Elder Cajas birthday, so we baked some brownies, bought some candles, and sang happy birthday with Elder Wilcox and Zambrano. It was pretty chill. Sorry I don't have much time. Gotta cut it short, but all in all a pretty good week. Anyway, I love you all, and I'll send some pics, too! Have a good week everybody. I'm grateful for all the prayers and support. Hey, go to the temple this week if you feel overwhelmed. I felt overwhelmed this week a few times, and I wish I could go to the temple, but my prayers and scripture study always help as well. I love you all. Have a good week!

Elder Dean.
After the baptism: Elder Dean, Ingrid, Jaison, Jaison's Mom, Elder Caja

 Ingrid, Elder Dean, Jaison

Elder Caja- the birthday boy.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Pare! Pare! and a Soccer Tournament.

Hello there.
Hey everyone. Hope you guys all had a good week. Things are normal here in good old Cali Colombia. You know, drunks trying to punch me, gun shots, dogs humping my leg... all that good stuff. But seriously, a stupid dog. I was in a old lady's house with the zone leaders and my companions eating lunch, and I was calling another old lady to confirm lunch for the next day, when this big dog straight up attacked and tried to violate me... I was yelling "PARE PARE Elder Wilcox Ayudame!!! Pare!" (Stop! Stop! Elder Wilcox help me! Stop!) The old lady I was talking on the phone with was probably super confused, and after, I couldn't talk to her on the phone because we were all busting up laughing haha. Dang. 
Anyway, my week this week was pretty good. I finished Alma in the Book of Mormon in Spanish and just truckin' along in Helaman. Good stuff. This week we had interviews with President Prince. That was good. And sister prince gave me banana bread -even better. But the best thing was President Prince called my mom because I have completed a lot of mission goals these past few months.  He told her I was doing good, and even let me talk to her for 30 seconds! It was great. I couldn't say much because I was trying to keep it together sitting there across from President,  but it was super cool. I love it.
 Today for p-day we had our soccer tournament with all of the missionaries here in Cali. Unfortunately we lost 2 and tied 1. Not too hot haha. We lost to the team that won in our first game in the last 30 seconds. We were winning with 30 seconds to go, 2-1, and in the last 30 seconds they scored twice. LAME. Haha but it's all good. Anyway, we had some people show up to church too, which is awesome. Hopefully we can start to progress here in the next few weeks. I gotta go- out of time. Sorry about the short email. I'll try to write more next week! Love you all. Have a good week!
Elder Dean

Farallones Zone
Front:  Elders Wilcox and Moran
Back:  Elders Mina, Caja, Dean, Lawrence, Viza, S. Walker, Zambrano, Jones

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Pretty Normal Week.

Hey there everybody.
What's new folks? Nothing too new here in Cali Colombia... This week was pretty normal! We worked hard all week to have good church attendance, but it wasn't too hot :( A few people showed up though, so that's good. Elder Caja and I are trying to find new people to teach, and get the people we are teaching to church! It's hard to progress in the gospel as an investigator if ya never go to church haha! Also, we have been thinking, and there is a heap of inactives here in this ward... We are thinking about spending more of our time trying to find inactives and working with them, even though that's not really the culture in this mission. Hoping this next week that we will break through and have some success here and get some people progressing. One night we were in an investigators house, and a lady walked in and shook elder Caja's hand and tried to kiss him on the cheek (it's common here to kiss on the cheek when greeting). He did a good bob a weave and moved out of the way. It was super awkward to watch haha! I thought for a moment she was gonna come after me too, but she didn't haha. The funny things that happen here in the mission. Sorry I never have time to write more stuff! Today for p-day we woke up and studied, and then went and played soccer with people at the church. I scored twice, but I was super pooped out after. After soccer, we went with some of our zone and bought matching shirts for our team. There is a mission soccer tournament the next two Mondays - zones against zones. Anyway, I gotta run everybody, but I will write more next week and hopefully have some good news and success in the area. Love you all. Have a good week! Oh, and do your visiting teaching and home teaching, read the scriptures, go to church and the temple, and serve others and be good boys and girls :) haha Nos Vemos!
Elder Dean

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

New Comp and Conference.


Hey evvvverybody. Whats up? So I guess I'll just start off by saying that I hope you all watched conference! It was awesome! I got to watch in English in a class room in the stake center here. Elder Wilcox, Elder Welling, Elder Perounoud and I were watching together. Also, Elder Menendez, the other assistant and a couple elders from the office, Elder Perez and Elder Flores, watched with us. They speak English pretty good. My word conference went by sooo fast! I keep glancing at my watch wishing the time would slow down... It flew! I enjoyed it a lot, that's for sure. I can't remember everything that I learned, but I know I felt the spirit super strong. I think my favorite talk was Elder Uchtdorf in the priesthood session, but it's a hard decision.... So I had my first week here with my new companion, Elder Caja. He's from Peru, and he's 26 years old. He's a good guy, but most of the responsibility is on me doing phone calls and planning and everything... A little stressful, but it's all good. Today for p-day I woke up, studied for a few hours, washed my clothes and cleaned house for a bit, and then went and ate lunch with the zone leaders, and we played chess after for a while. We had a little mini tournament and I took 3rd... I'm not too good at chess. Elder Wilcox won and Elder Zambrano took 2nd and my companion came in last. He had to by Elder Wilcox an ice cream haha. Anyway, not too much to tell this week. I'm grateful for your prayers always. Especially in the next following weeks as my responsibility is this area now... Anyway, I'll talk to you all later. Hope you all have a good week, read the Book of Mormon, go to church, and go to the temple if ya can. Enjoy the fall weather out there. I'm seriously missing fall time right now :( Love you ALLL! (Sorry this email is so short) Talk to you next week!

Elder Dean

Monday, October 7, 2013

Baptisims and Transfers.

Hello There.
Hey everyone. What's happening? I'm just here in Cali, Colombia - ya know the drill. So this past Saturday we had a baptism service! We worked and stressed and all that, but we ended up baptizing 6 people! 4 from Elder Cartes and I, and 1 from the zone leaders who we share a ward with, and 1 guy named Carlos that wasn't kinda a joint baptism I guesss haha. We baptized Octavio and his wife Carmen, and Carlos from Spain had the opportunity to baptize his wife. That was really cool. We also baptized Sebastian. He's 17. A good kid for sure. The next day, Sunday, it was raining a lot, but everybody made it to the chapel, and we confirmed them all. I got to baptize Hermana Carmen, and got to stand in on a few of the confirmations. Super cool stuff. It's been pretty stressful lately, but that was great to see. I hope and pray everyone of them will continue and grow in the church and not fall away.  We also received news last night about transfers. My companion, Elder Cartes, will be leaving tomorrow morning (Tuesday) at 7  in the morning. We completed a little over 3 months here together in Limonar. My new companion will be Elder Caja. He is from Peru. He has about 16 months in the mission. This is somewhat my area now, and the stress that comes along with it because my comp won't know the area haha. Also we baptized our investigators, so now we will have to start new and start finding investigators and try and build up and investigator pool. Prayers accepted :) Today for p-day we have been doing a few things to get ready for tomorrow. We went and ate at McDonald's for lunch. I had a big mac and fries. haha I don't ever get to eat food like that - ever! Now after this, Elder Cartes wants to go say goodbye to everybody he knows haha - but its all good. Anyway, I love you all and I will be grateful for your prayers. Until next week- with a little more info about my new companion and all that jazz! Ciao!
Elder Dean

 Marian, Carlos, and Baby Carlos

 Elder Dean, Carlos, Elder Wilcox

 Elder Dean, Sebastian, Elder Cartes

 Elder Dean, Octavio, Carmen

 Group Shot

Leaving the baptismal font with Hermana Carmen. The water was cold, but never felt warmer!

Monday, September 23, 2013

Pigs Feet.

Hey everybody! How's it going? Hope everything is good. SO - we didn't have transfers this week. They got delayed until next Tuesday or Wednesday! I will complete more than 3 months in this area with Elder Cartes here in this week. We had a few baptisms fall through, but I could kinda see it coming. Bummer. We are going to marry Octavio and Carmen tomorrow, and have their baptism service the 28th. That's awesome. Prayers for them. So nothing too special this week. We had a pretty good family home evening with investigators and members this week. I was the boss of the game we played. It was a miracle I conducted the game perfectly, and in Spanish! That was a good time for sure. So this Sunday I had to bless the sacrament in Spanish, too. That was interesting... But I did it the fist time perfect! WHEW. I was defiantly sweating! Haha. Today for p-day was interesting... We woke up, and first thing went to help Carlos (he is from Spain and is a member, but his wife isn't) work on his wife's haircutting shop. We fixed holes in walls, and tore out carpet, and all sorts of stuff. When it came time to eat lunch, Elder Zambrano and Elder Cartes didn't wanna go because the lunch was with a member way up the mountain side - a long hard walk. So me and Elder Wilcox thought it would be rude to just not show up, so we went ahead and hiked the mountain. After 40 minutes we got up there (ugh!) and then ate lunch. Pigs feet and tendons. YUCK! It even had pig hair on it. We walked an hour and a half up a huge hill side to eat pigs feet and tendons! hahaha We choked it down, and then started the long walk back laughing, saying, "Well at least we have a story to tell!" Ha! Then I walked back to the apartment with Elder Cartes, showered real quick, and now I'm writing! Quite the p-day, huh? Anyway, so for sure this next week I will have news about transfers, and maybe even some baptism photos :) Prayers for the investigators! Talk to you all later. Caio.
Elder Dean

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

3 Months In Limonar.

 Hey fam and friends.

So bad news - no baptisms this past week... Bummer! But don't worry, I will continue to work and I'm  certain that I will have good news in the future sometime soon :) Anyway, I sent some pictures from the last week when me and Elder Wilcox bought stuff and Price Mart (Ghiradellis brownies, Nature valley granola bars, Marshmallow Mateys, Pringles, Old Spice etc.) Haha. Today for p-day we went and ate lunch at Pricemart again but couldn't buy anything because we didn't have a member or a card with us to buy stuff.... lame. But it's OK. I had a chicken bake and soda and french fries. Yum. After, we played chess for 20 min or so and then hopped on the bus back to the areas. I got my haircut and now I'm writing the quick letter! Not too eventful of a p-day, but it was good. So this past week we had a division, and I went with Elder Walker here in my area the whole day. Elder Walker has one transfer less in the mission than me, and Elder Cartes and I didn't really have any set plans that day, but we did pretty good for a couple of new gringos! haha. I complete 3 months here in Limonar, 2 here in Cali this week, and we have transfers coming up. This will be my last week with Elder Cartes, and I am done with training this week too (even though there wasn't too much training) haha. Anyway, everybody -  hope to have some good news this next week maybe some baptisms, and I will fill you all in about transfers! Oh, we plan on marrying our investigators Octavio and Carmen next Tuesday, and have a baptism service with them. Prayers for that! Love you all. Short email this week, but enjoy the few pics from last p-day! Caio!

Elder Dean

Friday, September 13, 2013

Price Mart.

Fam. Friends. How's it going? Thanks for all your thoughts and prayers about the situation with Elder Encarnacion. We are starting to get rolling again here in Colombia Cali. This week was pretty good. We had a conference with Elder Waddell of the 70 earlier this week. That was cool. We talked about not just having baptisms, but having actual conversion. We have a lot of baptisms here in this mission, but there is a lot of inactivity. We have a few baptism dates for this Saturday. One is Jaison. He is kinda having a hard time right now though, and prayers would be appreciated on his behalf. So this Saturday we had a activity at the church in the afternoon. We played basketball, volleyball, and soccer. We didn't have as much people at the activity though, so that was kinda lame. My team in basketball lost. Yep. Sad. But I had 4 kids on my team and didn't ball hog it :). Today for pday we played soccer with another zone for a while on a artificial field again. That was cool. I scored again. It's a miracle. I can actually play soccer. We had a few investigators come with us too, so that's cool. After that, me and Elder Wilcox dragged our companions to Price Mart with a member who has a membership there. OHHH my goodness! So cool! Me and Elder Wilcox were practically crying - it was awesome. We bought stuff like brownie mix, pancake mix, syrup, nature valley granola bars, and doughnuts. All that good stuff you can't find here. Our companions weren't too excited, but we were defiantly happy campers. Anyway I gotta get movin here, but thanks for all your prayers, and I hope to have good news this next week! Love you all.

Monday, September 2, 2013

Life Is So Much Better With The Gospel.

Hello All.

So another week in the mission field has come and gone. This week we had a little earthquake for like 4 seconds. That was pretty interesting. I was in the house of my recent convert, Monica, and bang- earthquake for a few seconds. It wasn't too bad. It was a pretty little one I think. So this week we had a service project with an investigator named Octavio. Octavio is from Buena Ventura and has one of the coolest accents I've ever heard... Unfortunately I can't really understand him, his accent is sooo different. But it sounds cool though :) So he works on TVs, and electronics, and all sorts of stuff, and we cleaned out his shop/house. We took out probably 30 or 40 old tvs and reorganized everything and cleaned for probably 4 hours. It was hard work, but it was acutally kinda nice to work like that for a while. Anyway, we had an activity at the church Saturday, too. We played a little basketball, and volleyball, and of course soccer with members and investigators. That was fun, and I actually scored in soccer. I got the chance to not play goalie, and I took advantage of it hahaha. Belive it or not, my soccer skills might be improving a little bit. So everything was good until Saturday night when we recieved a phone call, and we learned that Elder Encarnacion was shot and killed. SO sad. We sat in silence, not saying much, for a long time. I had the oportunity to meet him a few weeks ago we played soccer one pday together. He seemed really nice and was a really good missionary. Definantly a bummer situation, but I'm ok. The whole mission is kinda in shock right now, but we will need to get going again, and not dwell on it too much. He gave his life in service to the Lord, and that's something very special. Prayers for his family would be good. Anyway, today for pday everybody was kinda low and not wanting to do anything, but a few of us got the motivation to go and rent an artificial grass soccer field and play soccer for an hour. It was nice to run and get our minds off the matter for a while. Anyway, I'm ok though, and I'm grateful for all your support. I hope you all have a good week and remember to pray, read the scriptures, attend church, and go to the temple, etc.. This life is so much better with the gospel, and I'm grateful for the hope it brings us. I'll talk to you all later. Love you all.

Elder Dean

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

El Gato


So this week was pretty darn normal I suppose! We had a conference with zone Farallones, Agua Blanca, San Fernando, and maybe one other I can't remember. It was Wednesday with President Prince and the assistants. It was good to hear some motivation from President Prince. He's awesome. I'll miss him when we have a change of mission presidents next May. So this week we were in a leccion when the sun went down. We were in an area called Los Chorros. Anyway, long story short, this area is sketchy during the day time, and we ended the leccion after dark, and then there was a power outage in the area. Dang! All dark in Los Chorros. Sketchy to the max, but don't worry, I got out alive. So here in Cali, I'm not sure why, but people love to drink hot hot chocolate, even when it's blazing hot outside. Every time I'm dying of heat, people always give me hot choc.... Haha. This Sunday we also had stake conference, so our church attendance wasn't too hot, but it wasn't too bad. We had about 6 investigators show up, so that's pretty good for a stake conference. I hope they heard something good during the conference. So today for p-day we actually did something different. Me and Elder Cartes went with an investigator and saw some more of Cali. We went to an old catholic church, which was cool, and then we went to a church/museo called La Merced. That was pretty sweet, too. Then we went to the Parque de Gatos. It's a big statue of a cat. Kinda random, but cool I suppose. Ahh! I have no time to write this week, but I'll send some pictures! Hope you all have a good week. Talk to you later.


 La Hermita

 La Hermita y yo

 El Gato
 Jaison y yo

La Merced

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Haircut And A Busted Table.

Waddup Everybody.

So this week was pretty normal. Nothing too exciting. I had my first haircut here in Cali on Tuesday, I think. YIKES. Somebody call Brooke and tell her to hop on a plane for Colombia. Haha just kidding. It actually wasn't too bad. I paid like 6000 pesos (about 3 dollars). So for my first week here in Zona Farallones I was the only gringo, but now we have a new zone leader- Elder Wilcox. He's a pretty nice guy.  He's from Alaska. He's been out about a year. It was weird talking in English a little bit the past few days. So now we have 3 or 4 gringos in the zone. In the zone meeting we had this week, Elder Lawrence, a new missionary in this zone, wanted to arm wrestle me... Not sure why, but I said ok, and we arm wrestled. Haha! We were arm wresting and we totally broke the table in the church! My elbow totally went through the table haha! Saturday we had a activity at the church for investigators and members. We played soccer, of course. My team won all the games, not sure why (maybe it's because we have an awesome goalie.) It was good. Even the bishop played. Anyway, we had 10 investigators attend church this Sunday, so that's awesome. We will try to keep working with them, and then get them baptism dates soon. Nothing too exciting this week, but it's all good! We have stake conference this Sunday too, so not sure what will go down with that, but we'll see! Today for p-day we played soccer against Zone Agua Blance for a few hours and then rode the bus with the zone leaders to burger king and ate lunch. One of these p-days I might get a chance to rest, but I doubt it! So fam, friends.. until next week.  I'm outta time. Hope you all have a good week.
Elder Dean

Monday, August 12, 2013

Rain in Cali.

How's it going all? So this week in Cali we had rain! For, like, the first time since I got here! It was nice. It cooled off quite a bit, which was awesome. The problem now is, it's going to heat up again and probably be even more humid than normal, but it's all good. It was nice to have some cool weather for once. So this week we did splits again, earlier in the week. I went to another area called Israel with a elder from Peru, named Elder Viza. We ran into some Jehovah Witnesses and had and interesting talk. Ha! Funny stuff. This week they cut the water in Cali for a day or two. That wasn't too fun, but you do what ya gotta do, ya know! So Elder Cartes told me that I sometimes speak Spanish in my sleep. He says I say funny things- whatever that means! Hope it's not bad... Oh, this Saturday we had an activity at the church for a few hours. We played soccer for a few hours, and invited some investigators. It was good. I had to walk 30 minutes to the church with an 8 year old named Julian on my shoulders. Haha! Dang kid wouldn't walk! I was pretty pooped out, that's for sure. We didn't have any baptisms this week, and looks like we won't have any for a few more weeks in the future due to church attendance problems, but we have people in mind for the first or second week in September, so pray for those weeks! We had transfers today, but me and Elder Cartes both didn't get transferred, so we have another 6 weeks together. Not anything too exciting the week other than some dude on a motorcycle smacked me as he drove by... What a jerk! Ha! It's all good though. Hope you all have a good week. We´ll talk later! Ciao.
Elder Dean

Monday, August 5, 2013

Splits, Coke Bottle Soccer, and a Baptism.

What's up everybody? Hope all's good. Had a pretty good week this week. So this week we started off the week by doing splits. I went with Elder Zambrano, one of the zone leaders. We worked in his area, and the other zone leader with my companion in our area. Elder Zambrano is a good guy. Hes' pretty serious all the time, but a good missionary. I was playing soccer with a kid at the bus station with a coke bottle the other day. People were lookin at me like I was crazy. Like, what's this gringo doin... Haha. So I finished Mosiah in the Book of Mormon, and started Alma. I only read 2 or 3 chapters everyday because I read pretty slow in Spanish, but it's all good! So this week we fasted Friday afternoon to Saturday afternoon. I thought I was gonna die haha! Seriously never been so thirsty in my life! It's all good though. Fasting is a great way to feel the spirit a little stronger. Not gonna lie, I don't have any time this week, but good news- I had another baptism! Early Sunday before church. Sister Monica. I'll attach a picture. Anyway, love you all. I'll write more next week. This computer is slooooow. Didn't have much time to write. CHAO.

Elder Dean

Elder Dean, Sister Monica, Elder Cartes

Rooftops of Limonar, Colombia

Monday, July 29, 2013

First Baptism. First Hamburger.

Aloha Fam Friends.

Ok, I'll start with some good news... I had my first baptism this Saturday! It was great. We had planned on having more than 1 baptism, but it didn't work out. It's all good though. We´ll keep working with the others and get some more baptisms in August!  So this week we had splits. I went with Elder Pizarro. He's from Chile. We were in my area, so it was my job to find all the places and not get us lost! I did all right though, wasn't too bad haha. I ate my first hamburger here in Colombia at a little shack with an investigator. Sketchy! It actually wasn't too bad!  So this week, Elder Cartes was in the dentists office in Cali almost every moring from 8 to 12 because he had some problems with cavities and stuff. He wasn't able to talk on the phone much because his mouth hurt pretty bad! Soo that means that the talking on the cell phone dutys went to me. Stressful! Talking in spanish in person is hard, but on the phone it's even harder! It's all good though. I survived haha. Me and Elder Cartes have a game of slug bug going. I taught him how to play. Mistake. Haha I'm defiantly losing. I'm too busy always thinking about Spanish and words to pay attention to the cars, so I always get punched! I get him occasionaly though. Oh some crazy guy was talking to me at the bus station. He asked me all sorts of weird questions and then scribbled out a note for me to go get a urine sample and blood test. haha Alright... thank you sir. I'm out of time, but I hope you all have a good week. Nos vemos!

Elder Dean

 I ran out of black socks. Had to wear white ones . I probably looked like a goof!

Monday, July 22, 2013

Just A Normal Day In Colombia.

Family and friends.

Shoot! I really don't have any time to write this week! Bummer. Anyway, I'll make it short. So this week was pretty good. We have a baptism service this Saturday, so pray all goes well with that. I have a funny story to tell. So I was talking with a member family, and we were talking about the color of my skin! White, of course. Anyway, long story short, the sister asked me if I was a big racist in my country? I thought she asked if there are different types of races in my country. So I answered, " Yes of course, Sister. " Embarrasing. She thinks I'm a racist. Haha. Plenty of embarrasing storys with the Spanish every day. Good stuff. I cooked french toast for a investigator because she wanted me to cook the food of my country. Haha! So I cooked french toast, cause that's like one of the only things I know how, and it's easy :) Played soccer today for p-day. I'm horrible. Haha. It's all good though, I'm sure I'll get better at soccer. We play like every p-day. Heard my first gun shots! Sweet! Haha. About 30 or 40 feet away. BANG. BANG. BANG. Yikes! Saw a drug deal, too. I've never seen so much money.... Sketchy!! HA It's all good though, just a normal day in Colombia no? I'll try to send some pics next week. Sorry this email stinks. I don't have much time. Anyway, love you all. Talk to you later.

Elder Dean

Monday, July 15, 2013

Updates From Colombia.

Fam. Friends. What's up.
So this week was pretty good. Earlier this week a member in the ward acutually took me and Elder Cartes out to lunch. She's the wife of the bishop, and they are pretty well off with money. She drove us to the nice part of our area. (Our area has a nice part and a realllly ghetto part. I do 90 percent of my teaching and time in the ghetto part.) She took us to Pricemart. Like What??? I felt like I was in the U.S again. Just like Costco. We ate at the food court there. I was in heavan. Pizza. Hot dogs. Ice Cream. Sprite. Oh my goodness, just like somewhere at home. Anyway, that was great. So our area is one of the biggest areas in the mission. And guess what. It's just me and Elder Cartes in the area. We walk toooonnnns. I'm also the only gringo in my zone. We have like 10 missionaries in the zone, I think, and we had a zone meeting this week, and I'm the only gringo! 
So me and Elder Cartes are trying hard to have a baptismal service the 27th of July. Working hard for that date. Hope everything goes as planned, which doesn't happen much here in Colombia. Haha. Anyway, this Sunday I was called up to talk...Without preparation! Just randomly, "Ahora vamos a escuchar a Elder Dean" What!? Crap. Haha I got up there and rambled on for like 5 or 10 minutes, probably just sounding like an idiot. Hope somebody understood something. Hahaha. Elder Cartes said he understood everything, but he's probably just being nice. Anyway, met a guy from Provo at church. He was just visiting with his wife, cause his wife is from Colombia. I think his last name was Starling. It was nice to speak in English for 10 min. Anyway, love you all and I hope you all have a good week. Probably sweating in that heat in Provo, but don't worry I'm dying of heat here in Colombia, too! Haha. Talk to you all next week.

Elder Dean

Wednesday, July 10, 2013


From the Museo de Oro, Bogota Colombia

Cristo Rey - overlooking Bogota
Bogota, Colombia

Catholic church overlooking Bogota

Mountains of Bogota

Cali, Colombia

Elder Dean, Cali Colombia