Elder Peper

My Mission Experience

8 Months Out

Elder Peper Gazing at the Sunset

July 27, 2010

We haven’t received a real letter from Riley in a couple of weeks or so.  He emails every Tuesday back-and-forth with me in what I would consider more of a chat format.  It seems to be his preferred way of communicating.  I wonder if it might be that he doesn’t like me posting his letters online.

It’s difficult to convey his message when he emails one sentence at a time, but here are a few things to share:

  • He got a new companion last Tuesday, Elder Palmer.  He is also still companions with Elder Stokes, so there are three of them together.  Elder Stokes has almost completed his 2-year mission and will be leaving for home on August 9.
  • The weather is very hot and muggy, but they are surviving.
  • The ward members are taking good care of them and feeding them meals very often.
  • They volunteer in the library every week, helping with whatever is needed.
  • Their Zone Leaders issued a challenge asking the missionaries to set a goal as to the number of Book of Mormons they would give out during the coming week.  The Zone Leaders set a goal for themselves of 8 books.  Other missionaries were setting goals of 5 or 6 books.  Riley and his 2 companions set a goal of 80 books.  He said that his Zone Leaders were upset with them (probably because they weren’t being realistic).  Riley then stated that they gave out 25 books in 1.5 hours on the first afternoon.  It will be interesting to hear how that one turns out.
  • He mentioned that they may have another baptism coming up this week.

That’s about all I got out of him today.  I am hoping to get an actual letter soon.   Until then, please know that he is very happy and doing well, but always appreciates prayers and letters.  As of August 2, he will have been out for 8 months.

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July 27, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Hey Madi!

July 14, 2010

Hey Madi!

What’s up?  I’m just sitting here writing you a letter.  Not too much is going on in Oklahoma.  How about you?  Mom tells me that you’re playing soccer and taking swimming lessons.  How is that?  What else are you doing?  Do you play with a lot of your friends or just stay home?  Do you like the Wii?

It’s really hot here in Oklahoma.  It has been raining a lot, too.  There is a ginormous rodeo going on in Shawnee this week.  It is called IFYR, and it’s a youth rodeo.  The streets by the arena are one big traffic jam.  It looks pretty cool, though.

We have a lady who is getting baptized on Saturday, so we’re really excited about that.  She is a very nice lady who was excited to learn about the church.  I’m happy for her.

Not much else is going on.  Things are going well.  Be sure to write me back.  Thank you for the pictures you drew for me.  They are in my binder.  I love you and miss you!

Love,

Riley

P.S.  I hope you like the Spongebob stickers.  🙂

July 19, 2010 Posted by | Letters from Elder Peper | Leave a comment

The “Big 4”

Hey Everybody!

Greetings from Oklahoma!  Things are going really well for us right now.  Shawnee seems to be a good place.  I do like being here a lot.  The work seems to be going well.

We drove to Norman, OK yesterday (actually, it’s a very nice and seemingly livable town–the OU campus is there) to meet our new Mission President, President Taylor.  He is a direct descendant of John Taylor [the third President of the Church].  From what I could tell so far, they are a really nice family.  They brought two of their sons, aged 15 & 13, to Oklahoma with them.  The rest of their kids are older.

The First Presidency, over the course of the next year, is making a lot of changes to the missionary work.  We will still be using “Preach My Gospel” but there will be another book with 8 lessons in it.  These lessons aren’t for the investigators, but they are for us.  They are changing a lot of our meetings, too.  Zone Conferences, which are held every six weeks, will now be held quarterly.  So, our next Zone Conference won’t be until August (can you believe I’ll be 20 next month?).  There is a new meeting that is for Zone Leaders, District Leaders and Trainers that will be held every other month.  The kicker is that this meeting will be four days long.  That is insane.  I’m curious to see how that will be.

We’re making measurable progress with our investigators.  We sill have the “Big 4” solid investigators.  The oldest one has a baptismal date for July 17.  As of Sunday, she had been off cigarettes for four days, and she seems to be doing quite well.  She really is the perfect investigator.

Our next investigator is a nine-year-old kid.  His dad is a returned missionary from Italy; well, his mission was in Italy.  I’m not really sure why he isn’t active, but we’re working with them.  His wife, a convert, was apparently offended at one point and said she wouldn’t come back.  We’ll see.

Our third investigator is an awesome guy.  His beliefs are pretty much the same as ours, except just worded differently.  I really love teaching him because it’s a really sophisticated lesson.  We’re told to usually teach so an 8-year-old could understand, but if we did that with him, he would probably throw up.  His major hang up is believing that Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world.  Still, I can tell that we’re making progress every time we meet with him.

Finally, we have a lady who has a recent-convert husband.  We’re making really good progress with her.  She hates being put on the spot, and last night was really good.  I was able to ask her what her thoughts were on the church while she was getting me a drink.  I know that she will be baptized and become a member of the church at some point.  She is a really awesome lady.

It seems like all of our investigators are eventually going to join the church.  It’s only a matter of time.  I’m really happy about that.

My companion and I have been playing a lot of soccer together.  So, that’s pretty fun.  Hopefully, I won’t suck at it when I get home.  I’ve also been able to get a lot better at basketball.  I sucked pretty bad when I first came out, but I’ve gotten a lot better.  That’s really fun.

Not much else to share from these parts.  I haven’t taken many pictures lately, sorry about that.  There’s not much to see, though.  Well, take care.   I love you guys tons & 100 pounds!  See you next year!

Love,

Elder Peper

July 3, 2010 Posted by | Letters from Elder Peper, Uncategorized | Leave a comment