Monday, January 30, 2012


Happy Birthday Mom!!! Hope it´s wonderful.

First of all, thank you sooooo much for the packages. I actually got
them this last wednesday. My roommates and I were so happy. You´ll be
happy to know that I love the card. I open it up and it started
vibrating on me!! It scared me, but I died laughing when I realized
what it was. Thank you! I also received a couple letters and a post
card from Randy and Ann. Thank you all very much for all the letters!!
The packages and the letters really made my week. I can´t thank you

So as you can probably see from the other email (if it went through),
we got our new apartment. One of the church workers came today and
took our stuff to the new apartment. We have not been there yet, but
we are hoping everything is in order like the office said. It´s a nice
little apartment and only 2-3 blocks from the chapel. It´s going to be
a lot easier now, because now we are in our area and don´t have to
travel as far to get to our investigators.

Yesterday was wonderful. We had two investigators at church and three
really menos activos (less active) come as well. It was amazing to see their happy
faces and they had such joy because they were at church. I think
that´s made me the happiest is going after those who have strayed and
helping them come home again. I´m still very excited about our
investigators as well. I don´t recall if I told you about Monica. She
is an 11year old girl who recently moved here with her family from
Paraguay. She is the cutest, sweetest girl. She is so excited to come
to church and to read from the Book of Mormon. She has a baptismal
date for 10 de Feb. Her parents have given their consent for her
baptism and her mother has expressed desires to be baptized as well.
She had received the discussions about 6 months ago, but she got a new
job that took a lot of her time. She had to stop the discussions, but
still has had the desires. We are trying to work with her schedule and
are hoping that we can get a phone number for them soon.

We have such an amazing ward here. They are just some of the kindest
people you will meet anywhere. Each of the menos activos and
investigators had someone to greet them and sit with them. This made
such a difference for all of them, because they knew that they were
cared for and missed. I have seen such progress and growth in this
ward in the short two months that I have been here. They are trying so
hard and are becoming more involved and excited about the missionary

We had a training meeting this last wednesday (which was where Elder
León talked about the hot dogs and I received my mail). On our way to
the last one, we had an issue with the train. This time, the train´s
power went out and we thought that we would have to run again to get
to the meeting on time. Luckily it was fine a minute later.

Well, I need to go, but I hope that your week goes well and I pray for
you every day. I love you all sooooooo much. I´ll talk to you soon.

 Argentina looking out from the chapel

Getting ready to go tracting L-R Hermana Reed, Hermana Alvey, Hermana Bray, Hermana Renteria
Our new apartment - main area and kitchen

Monday, January 23, 2012

It was awesome to hear from all of you this week. Before I forget, no we do not have a Wal-Mart in our area. We do our shopping at a local supermarket. 
That is so exciting for Garrett and his family. I remember very well when we went to the temple to be sealed. Thank you for letting me be there even though I did not need to be.  It has strengthened my testimony of the temple even more. I hope with all my heart that you are going to the temple every week and that you are going together every week. I cannot tell you how much I long to go to the temple. It´s not in our mission and is under construction right now until the middle of the year so I pretty much have to wait until I get home to go to the temple again. I don´t want you to feel this way. Please make it a goal and a priority to go to the temple together every week. It is an indescribable blessing to have the temple only 10 minutes away. I truly cannot wait until I can go again.
This week has been an interesting one. The bite on my leg that was infected is now down to a scab and I am so glad not to be taking 3 pills a day. Of course I find one or two new bites every other day, but the allegra is helping a lot. I just don´t have a lot of it and it´s expensive. Hopefully my body has become accustomed to mosquitoes now so I don´t need the allegra any more. There is an ant infestation still, but we have that even at home and they don´t usually bother us (I don´t think). I have found a few more spiders in our apartment, but I have been able to kill those ones with no problem. Such is the life with insects around.
Now, about the rest of the week. The weather has been a little rough. The heat and the humidity has gotten so bad that during the hours of 3-5pm, we have been given permission to go to a member´s house and share a spiritual thought with them. The heat doesn´t bother me so much, but humidity is hard. I"m wet almost all the time and when I do get home, I´m all sticky. Oh, well. It´s definitly interesting and keeps life fun.
We are working with a young girl named Monica and she came to church yesterday and loved primary. She is very interested in the Gospel and loves to read about Jesus Christ. She is in a tough situation, and there is not much that we can do for her, but we pray for her everyday and help where we can.
I really do need to take pictures of the area and our investigators, but it is hard because you don´t want your camera to get stolen and pretty much taking it out makes you a target. I will do my best though.
Friday, we had another open house, this time in our zone leaders´ area. It was an amazing success. They had 80 people show up, 17 were not members, we don´t know how many were menos activos (less active) and even received 5 baptismal dates. The ward was so active and helped out a lot. The Hermanas took the people through the tour while the elders and some of the members found people on the street and did the closing in the baptismal area. It was so much fun. We are working hard every day, but because we are not doing the normal things that missionaries do, our numbers don´t look that good. We are finding wonderful people, receiving many baptismal dates, and having wonderful service projects. The only thing is, the wonderful people are in other areas, the ones with the baptismal dates work in our areas, but live in other areas, and the service projects don´t have a key indicator and so do not show up in our numbers. I know that numbers are important, and yet not. We are doing great things in our ward and area, but a lot of people don´t know that. Luckily God does and so does our President.
We have been moving forward with the ward efforts and are working very closely with the Bishop. The ward is even more accepting of us and we are doing all we can to help them. We have found some difficulties along the way, and are praying every day for inspiration to work through these difficulties. They are all wonderful people who are all very human just like I am. We are working together. The work with the menos activos is progressing ever stronger and ever faster. Yesterday, we set up appointments with 4 of our menos activos for the week and plan to set up 3 more today for later this week. We are trying to build the foundation of the ward and the people who are already in it before we bring in more.
As I said, it has been an intersting week filled with ups and downs, but that is the week of a missionary. I truly am so happy to hear from all of you. It brings me great joy every week. My time has run out again, but I just want to tell you that I love you all veeeeeeery much.

Thursday, January 19, 2012


First of all, thank you so much for the pictures last week and this
week. They were awesome. Also, thank you for the recipes and the
stories. They are going to help so much. Second, I´m letting you know
that I used about 25.00 out of my account. It is for allegra and an
antibiotic. I´m fine. The allegra is for my reactions to the mosquito
bites and the other day I got bit by something else (which is what the
antibiotic is for). It was either something poisonous or now the bite
is infected (no I did not scratch it and I washed it every day and put
on neosporin). I´m fine though, just got to keep an eye on both of the

So now, how are things are going. Well I have some good news about Carlos.
We had an appointment with him two days ago and we were going to let
him know that if he had no intention of progressing to baptism, we
could not stop by anymore. Before we even brought that up, he told us
that he still wanted to get baptized but didn´t know when. We were so
excited. He truly wants to do what is right and knows the Book of
Mormon is true. He is just scared that he would be going against
Jehovah if he changed religions and he has been a Jehovah´s witness
for 35yrs. That´s a long time to just give something up cold turkey.
We are praying for him everyday and trying to have some form of
contact with him every day.

Daniel was awesome. We did not really get to have a sit down
discussion with him, but he wants to send us a picture of him in front
of the chapel in Peru when he gets there. He leaves tomorrow. I truly
believe that he will attend church in Peru and will want to get
baptized when he gets back. He has kept all his commitments, has
wonderful questions, and tries very hard. We had a wonderful
experience this week as well. I love that guard post, it just attracts
all the super prepared people. First was the other Daniel who accepted
a baptismal date right off the bat and was eager to talk to the
missionaries and go to church. Then we found Daniel (our actual
reference) who I just talked about, and the other day when we were
looking for the first Daniel we met Daniel´s replacement. (Yes I know
that that is a lot of Daniels) Luckily this third gentlemen´s name is
Luis. He read all of the pamphlets that we had left. He even knew our
names and what time we had sacrament meeting. He loved them and wanted
to learn more. It turns out that his daughter, two years ago at age
14, was baptized a member. The missionaries are coming to his house to
reactivate her and he wants to learn more. He even said that he was
very grateful that we stopped by and he was feeling cleaner already.
He´s a cancer survivor as well. What awesome miracles we see.

Speaking of which, this sunday, we had two menos activos come to
church. It was so exciting. We did not expect any of them to come and
we had 2. I cannot tell you how happy I am to see them come back to
church. They looked so happy and blessed. It was a wonderful feeling.
I am working even harder now to bring them back. This is a wonderful
part of missionary work that I had not thought about, but I am very
glad to be a part of it.

So, our district is back to it´s original areas and things have pretty
much gone back to the way they were before with our wonderful district
leader and his crazy companion. I also found out that one of our zone
leaders loves kingdom hearts. He had found out that I did and had
asked me about it. I was very surprised.

Thursday, we had interviews with President and I received some
interesting advice. The basic gist of it was to be annoying and take
pictures of spiders. Let me explain the second one first. I had found
a pretty big spider in the bathroom and killed it. I then went back to
pick it up with tissue and it came back to life and ran away. I was
totally freaked out that it had played possum. Luckily, Hermana Reed
went in, found it, and killed it. I told President of that little
morning experience for fun and he said: ¨Did you take a picture?¨ Of
course I said no and he said that I should next time. I had then told
him that I did not like tracting (which was brought up by an activity
that we would be doing the next day) , but would be willing to do what
the Lord wants. I wanted some advice on how to handle it better. He
ended up telling me that we need to be annoying like the parable of
the woman and the unjust judge. I asked where the line was between
stalker and annoying ( because I don´t want to be a stalker) and he
said: ¨There isn´t one; you need to be both.¨ I love my president.

Then on to Friday. We went into our district leader´s area to help
open the other half of his area because it was so big. So that means
knocking doors and talking to people in the street. The people were so
wonderful and one of them even invited herself to church that weekend.
It was awesome!! We´ll see what happens this friday. Well, we don´t
have much time to write today, so I´ll talk to all of you later.

I love you all sooooooooooo much!!! Please don´t forget that I pray
for you everyday and can feel your prayers everyday. Pictures will
have to come next time.


Monday, January 9, 2012

I know that´s not spanish, but I wanted to say it. So transfers were today. I am still in Vicente López and Hermana Reed is still my companion. We are going to have so much fun this transfer. Hermana Sperry is being transferred to Orquiza to be with Hermana Gonzalez and Hermana Renteria is going to be Hermana Bray´s companion. I can´t wait to see how this transfer goes.
So, Carlos still does not have a baptismal date and we may have to have ¨the talk¨with him. We don´t want to drop him, but if he no longer wants to change, we can´t keep teaching him right now. Daniel is working on leaving, so we are having a hard time getting a hold of him, but we went and visited the address he gave us as his address since we were in the area. It turns out that his aunt and another family lived there. We still have not gotten Daniel´s address, but we now have two new investigators with baptismal dates for Feb 10th. We are so excited. The mother does not want to hear the discussions, but she is happy that her daughter (11) is and the grandmother wants to listen too. We have actually found several good investigators by going to the wrong addresses. The Lord works in mysterious ways. We also went to a Menos Activo family at the request of our Elder´s Quorum President and they turned out to be amazing. They have such strong testimonies and are so kind. They have health issues and work a lot so they have a hard time getting to church. We met them yesterday and have another appointment with them next sunday.
We are having wonderful success with the menos activos and with the members of the ward. There used to be a poor relationship between the ward and the missionaries. I don´t know what happened, but it used to be an obligation to talk to the missionaries and it was hard. When I came in 6 weeks ago, the relationship was just starting to get better. Now, the members are so happy to see us and love talking to us. They ask us to help in so many ways, and we have seen the hand of the Lord in the work even more. The other day, we got to clean the chapel grounds as well. One of the Hermanas is a grounds keeper as an occupation and asked us to help. It was fun, sadly we could not do much because it was getting late, but what we could do helped a lot. We were also there to find a giant waterfall coming down from the water resevoir tower of the church. Turns out, the float isn´t working and we ended up saving the church´s water supply by being able to shut the system off. We contacted the counselors since the bishop was out of town and it is getting fixed this week. Everywhere we turn, we are finding ways to serve. Another sister asked us to accompany her to the hospital because she was going in for a procedure. We could not go because it was out of our area, but we gave her encouragement. The members are asking us for help and even offering help in return. I was talking with one of the members and he said that he would love us to call him this week to ask him to accompany us to an appointment. These are wonderful steps and progress that we are seeing just in these last six weeks.
The spanish is getting better. I am talking even more in the lessons and I am able to understand more. I was talking with one of the members and it clicked in my mind ¨I´m communicating¨. It´s still difficult and I need a lot more practice. I get general ideas, but most of the sentences escape me. Hermana Reed is very patient and helps a lot. She makes mistakes as well and shows me that it´s ok and that the people love to help. They also love to talk to us. I can finally express myself better, but have a long way to go.
Things sound like they are really moving along at home. I did receive the pictures. Thank you so much. The dogs look like they have no idea what was going on. It was really cute. What happened to the dog that they found back in september? Is school going on again?
Hermana Martinez (Relief Society President) wants to do an activity in march for the women. She wants to share Pioneer stories and act them out. Afterwards she wants to share pioneer food. She asked us to help since we are from the states. I have already given her the recipe for funeral potatoes. I would really appreciate any help you can give us. I thought about recipes for baking powder biscuits, cornbread, and dutch oven chicken and potatoes. If you have these recipes please send them to me. She can read english so don´t worry about that. If you can think of any other recipes, please send them as well. Also, if you know any pioneer stories or find any you like, she does not have internet and I can´t look them up for her, please send them to me as well. I am very grateful for any help you can give.
I have felt all of your prayers and have been greatly blessed by them. The language is coming easier, we are finding people, and we have seen many wonderful blessings every day. I love you all very much. I pray for you every day and am so happy to have all your support. You are all amazing. I will talk to you soon.
With loooooooooooooooooots of love
Hermana Jessica Alvey

I forgot to tell you. The area president is coming next week to tour the mission so everything has to be even more organized. We are all excited here.
I have lost 3-4 inches off my waist and have gotten darker. I don´t know how much weight I have lost, but I´ll figure it out soon.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Happy New Year!!!
Happy Birthday Dad!!
Hope your new year was great. We did not do anything for new years. We slept. I found that I can sleep through pretty much anything. The fireworks here are loud and big. They love setting them off at Christmas and New years. They sound like guns going off. I slept through all of them. My companion was not so lucky. She´s had a hard time sleeping since she got on the mission.
It´s been a battle this week. Carlos  was ¨talked to¨ by his church. They pretty much ranted on him and told him that he would be disfellowshipped if he joined ¨¨the mormons¨. That is kind of the point, but it´s hard for him, because they are pretty much all he has had and all he has known for the last 35 years. His daughter also yelled at him for trying to change his religion. He wanted to give us everything back (BofM, Hymnal, folletas, etc) Luckily a member called him and calmed him down. He did not come to church last week, but he is still willing to meet with us; not as often though. He also won´t commit to anything so we no longer have a baptismal date. We are still working hard with Carlos. I really want to help him.
Daniel  is progressing amazingly. He asks us every time to mark a chapter for him. This last time he wanted to mark scriptures so he could remember them (without us saying anything) and so I gave him a colored pencil. He asks us such great questions too. Yesterday, we had had him read in 1 Nephi 13 and he asked us what ¨the last shall be first, and the first shall be last¨ meant. He also asked, what was Síon. Not many people notice that, but he did. The other day was hilarious. We had asked him to read 3 Nephi 11. We asked him what he learned and he said that he did not remember which chapter it was, but it talked about baptism and sin and repentance. We had not remembered either so we were a little confused. Normally, we think of 3 Nephi 11 as just about Christ coming, but it also talks about Christ establishing His church. I love talking to Daniel, because we learn so much from him and he is so excited about the church. (he´s about 29) The next question was what made it funny. He asked ¨What are the names of the Three Nephites?¨ That totally took us by surprise. We had said that we would answer his questions and he had faith in that promise. We told him the scripture in 3 Nephi 19 that says all the names of the Nephite apostles, but that we did not know the name of the exact three. I remembered in JSH that he was commanded not to write their names after he met them, so we told Daniel that no one knew the names of the 3 Nephites because its a commandment of God and let´s them work without being hindered. Right after that, we looked up a chapel in Peru that is close to his house since he will be there January 15th for 3 months. He was so excited to find one only 7 blocks away. I´m very excited about Daniel.
Speaking of blocks, yesterday we walked 27-30 blocks to church because the bus wasn´t there, and the blocks are just bigger than the ones in Vegas. That was only for the first part of the day....... I was tired by the end of Sunday. We are acutally going to have a chill p-day today and take naps and write people.
Anyway, we lost about 5 investigators this week. One keeps avoiding us, and another says that she believes the Book of Mormon is true, but doesn´t want to change. Her son is a recent convert, but he says that he doesn´t believe in God or Satan. He does drugs, smokes, and looks at pornography because he likes it. The stories keep going, but I don´t want to get you down. It´s just been a tough battle this week. We are hopeful though. Personally, I am doing a lot better. I´m talking more to people on the streets and taking a bigger part in the lessons. I´m still not completely comfortable with the language yet, but it´s getting better. We had a couple transfers early this last week. We have 30 missionaries coming in this next transfer, so President transferred a couple people around so they could become acquainted with their new areas, before their trainees come in. With so many new missionaries, a lot of companionships would have been white-washed in, so to prevent that, President transferred them two weeks early. I now have a new district because of this.
We really need new investigators and we are trying really hard to contact all we can. We had about 40 references when I first got here, and now we have 19. This week, we contacted 16. Of course we had more references come in during the last four weeks, so we probably had about 60 references in all. Sadly, a lot of them were wrong addresses, so we don´t have many new investigators. We are working hard though. We are also focusing on our 5,5,5. They are the people and families who are part member families or Menos Activos who we have prayed about and asked to see if we could practice our teaching with them. This does several things. It gets them more involved and active; they learn about the missionary work; it gives us practice; and they will be the ones to know best about references (who we can teach). Well, all in all, it´s been interesting. Next time you hear from me, it will be a new transfer. We shall see what happens.
Well, it´s been fun. Thank you so much Mom for wanting to sign me up for Women´s Conference next year. I hope you have fun this year. Tell me how it goes. Please don´t forget to invite Breeanna.  Please send me pictures of the new things to the house. I would like to see. Please send me pictures of anything. I would love to see all of you. I love you all sooooooo much. Stay safe.
Hermana Jessica Alvey