It's not so much "whatever that means." It's whoever...

"Dear Elder Cannon: you are hereby called to serve as a missionary for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. You are assigned to labor in the Colombia Bogota North Mission. It is anticipated that you will serve for a period of 24 months...You will prepare to preach the gospel in the Spanish language... "

Monday, November 28, 2011

I'm not new anymore.


So, according to my companion, I'm no longer a new missionary. I've been out for 6 months now! I really can't believe it's been so long. Time sure flies on the mish. This week was pretty much hilarious. I have some great stories to tell. Spiritual ones...and some not so spiritual ones.
First of all, I want to appologize to Tristan and to Tanner for not wishing you a happy birthday. I totally had it in my mind last week to tell y'all happy birthday, and I spaced. I don't know what happened. Also...sorry for anyone else I've forgotten. :-/ Forgive me?

Apparently it was my birthday this week. Hahaha.'s what happened. Hermana Barreto's sister got her mission call to Mexico, so she and her companion bought cake and celebrated. But being...hermanas, they didn't want to eat all the cake, so they brought it to our District meeting the next morning and gave it to me, saying it was for my birthday. They sang Cumpleaños feliz to me and we ate delish cake, and that was that. I thought that it had been clear to everyone that it was all just a joke. Hehe. Apparently not. We worked that day, just like every other day. It was actually a really good day. I enjoyed it. We got to the apartment (after stopping with my comp to buy a truckload of soda. I wasn't sure why...). We planned the next days activities, and that's when the Elders from Cumbre showed up. They said they were there to do laundry. Okay. Whatev's. We fnished planning, and I went to change. When I came out of my room, the Zone Leaders were there. That was the first time I had suspected anything...unusual. We ended up with 8 Elders there in our apartment, with food and soda and more cake. I guess my companion had called everyone secretly and told them it was my birthday. Even wansn't my birthday. Hmm. Haha. So we partied for a while, and Elder Montero played a guitar he had borrowed from a member. It was a blast! It was definitely the best un-birthday party I've ever had. ;) Haha. I hope it's not bad that I still haven't told them it wasn't my birthday. They all think I'm 20 now. Maybe I should tell them. Hmm...

Okay, so spiritual story time. This Sunday, we went to church. Hehe. Um. Yeah. And after Sacrament meeting a member came up to us and said something like, "My girlfriend has been coming to church for quite some time now, and she wants to take the lessons and get baptized. Can you come over tonight?" It's not very often that people come looking for us to get baptized. Usually we have to look for them. That's what the entire 9th chapter of Preach My Gospel is about. But I'm distracting myself. This was an investigator straight from heaven. We went over that night, got to know her a bit, taught about the Restoration, committed her to read and pray, and then we were just kind of chatting afterward, and she told us that she wanted to be baptized on the 17th of December._ Ah! _:) Haha. We talked about it, and decided on the 24th, since her boyfriend had something going on on the 17th. So, if everything works out, I'm going to have one of the most amazing Christmas' ever! :) That's if I don't get transfered. Which I really hope I don't. Who knows? "It may not be on the mountain high, or over the stormy sea..."

Another thing that happened this week, was that we painted a member's...reja. I don't know what to call it in English. Here, a lot of the houses are gated in. You have to open the gate, and then open the door to get in the house. So, it was the gate...fence thing around the front of the house. I'm gonna try to send pictures. I hope it works today. I promise, I usually put on sunblock. I've been really pretty good about it. But that day, of all days, when I wasn't wearing a collared shirt, and when I was in direct sunlight for several hours...I forgot. Needless to say, I bought some aloe vera that night, and have been putting it on every little while since then. That was...Saturday. Sunday was not very fun...with a collared shirt on again. Heh. Today wasn't too bad, because it was Pday, and I was in regular clothes most of the day.

That's about all that happened this week. I think. Oh, it was Thanksgiving this week, huh. I keep forgetting. I didn't eat any turkey, but I did have juevos revueltos con salchicha (scrambled eggs with hot dog). That was almost the same... ;)

Anyway, I hope everything is wonderful in Utah. Or, wherever you are. Enjoy the snow for me. I'm really missing it. Not that I don't love the 80 and sunny weather every day...but I like the cold. Especially when it includes snow.

I love you all. Take luck. ;)
-Elder Joey

P.S. There's 101 days of summer vacation and school comes around just to end it. And the obvious problem of our generation is finding a good way to spend it. Like maybe!...

P.P.S. Swine flu!

P.P.P.S. I totes went to McDonald's today! I felt like I was at home. Heh. Yay for...obesity?

Monday, November 21, 2011

Hey Y'all

Dearest family and friends,
It's me again. Because today is Pday, so I'm here typing at you all. This week has been pretty good. (Hey white friend, try this. Hey that is pretty good.) The coolest things that happened were on Wednesday. We were contacting (knocking doors...we do that a lot here) and this guy came up to us and asked if I remembered him. I vaguely remembered him from several weeks back. I had been on intercabmios in Cañaveral with the Zone leaders, and we found this guy and talked to him and gave him a pamphlet and such. Well, he came up and pretty much the first words out of his mouth were, "What do I have to do to get baptized?" Haha...WHAT?? My companion and I looked at each other like, is this for real? But he was totally serious, so we started talking to him about taking the lessons and coming to church. He has dread locks, and asked us if he could be baptized if he wanted to keep them. We told him that we should try to look our best, especially as members of the church, but that anyone and everyone, no matter how they look, drees or do their hair are welcome in the church. He didn't come Sunday, but I'm hoping we can get in contact with him and teach him soon. He travels, so he doesn't technically live here. That was blessing number 1. Number 2 could not have been more than 2 minutes after we had finished talking with Eduardo, the dread locks guy. We touched this door....oh wow. Touched. That's my Spanish coming out. Tocamos una puerta and an older lady opened the door. We presented ourselves as misioneros de la Iglesia de Jesucristo do los Santos de los Últimos Días, and she said, "I know. I was a member of that church." That was another "Wait...WHAT?" kind of experience. She let us in and we started talking to her. She was baptized more than 20 years ago, but stopped going about 13 years ago. But she told us that she had been wanting to go back to church. We have a lesson with here tonight after we're done emailing. She didn't come to church this Sunday either. It's kind of a regular thing, being let down time and time again by investigators that say they're going to attend. Anyway, I think there are probably challenges with work and such, since she hasn't gone for 13 years. Hopefully we can get her and her shildren active. She also has twin granddaughters (spelling?) that were never baptized, so I'm hoping that we can talk to them about joining the church as well. :)
Those were the miracles of this week. It felt so good when we got home that night. Like we could baptize the world! Hehe. This work isn't all about baptism, but we focus on that, because that's the actual ordenance. Ordenanza. Hmm. But it's not all about the baptism. Baptism is a saving ordenance, but it doesn't save us by itself. The final and longest step of the Gospel of Jesus Christ is to Endure to the End. That's what saves us. Along with the Grace of Jesus Christ. "For we know that it is by grace that we are saved after all we can do." We have to do everything we can, and then the grace of our Savior will save us.
Anyway, cool stuff. We got here late, so I'm out of time, but I hope you know that I love you all and you're all in my prayers. Thanks for all the prayers and support and letters and such that you send my way. I couldn't be more grateful. :)
Have a nice day, eh?
-Elder Cannon
P.S. I was about to make my frontal assault, when like 50 ninjas attacked me, and I had to like, beat 'em all up, and I did...
P.P.S. Also...I don't know why, but it's not letting me attach fotos. Maybe next week? :-/

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Monday, November 14, 2011

Mondays are Pdays now.

So...I don't know how clear I made it last week, that Pdays have officially been changed to Mondays. Kinda lamesauce, I think, because with Pday as Wednesday, the week went by super fast. Now it kind of drags... It's all good though. I guess it's just something to get used to. 

Hello all. I skipped my corny, monotonous intro today, so I'm putting it here. How is everything? I hope all is well. Things have been a bit tough here. We don't really have any investigators. I think I've been saying that for like...2 months now? But it's true. We search and search and contact and ask for references, and the people are never interested beyond the second or third visit. Sometimes not any more than the first. :-/ Anyway, the work goes on. We keep working, and trying and knocking doors, and talking to people. 

This week, I got to go on divisions with a gringo! Er, North American. Haha. His name is Elder Ure, from Morgan, UT. He's about 6 ft. 4 in. and he's a powerhouse missionary. :) He's only been out one cambio more than me, but I look up to him so much. We worked SO HARD that day we were together. We taught 5 lessons, contacted 25 people, received a reference from a member, and all without getting mugged! Hehe...I say that jokingly, but actually that day, I had my first real "Don't go that way" spiritual experience. We were walking down from on neighborhood to another, going the way we always do, when I got this feeling, and we both stopped right in our tracks. "No...let's go down this way." I told him. He said he had the same impression. It was a cool experience. I'm really glad we were both in tune with the spirit to be able to avoid whatever danger may have awaited us. Usually we're both with a Latino companion, so it's not as much of a danger. Walking with another gringo however, is a little more dangerous. So far nothing bad has happened. Nothing more than being sworn at in English. And probably Spanish, but I don't understand them when they yell at me in Spanish. Anyway...

Life's good. I've been really worried about Julian lately. I was reading in Predicad Mi Evangelio today about how after we teach the investigators and they get baptized, it's the responsibility of the ward mission leader and the ward missionaries to teach them the first 4 lessons again, as well as the 5th one. I asked my companion if that ever happened, and he told me that this is only the second ward he's been in in his whole mission where he's even had a ward mission leader, much less ward missionaries. Basically, all of that is our responsibility. President Hinckley said that the three things that every new convert needs are a friend, a calling, and to be nourished by the good word of God. At least...I think those are the three things. We can nourish them with the word, and be their friend, but when we get transfered, what then? They're left friendless... :-/ Anyway, if there are ever any non-members that attend your ward, go talk to them and be their friend, okay? That's how they're gonna stay active. It's the whole Endure to the End thing that the members can really help us out with. 

Anyway, just here...plugging along. Praying and working and studying and working and teaching and working...

And the person behind me is playing music really loud on their computer and it's really distracting. That's why they invented headphones.

I read Jacob 5 this week, and for the first time, realized that it has everything to do with missionary work. Y'all probably knew that, huh. Well I didn't. Don't judge. Heh. Anyway, It was amazing. Talks all about the gathering of Israel and all that cool stuff. 

I have fotos this week! Wow. Photos. Fotos is Español. Hope you enjoy them. And...I hope I haven't sent them before, because it's been forever since I've sent photos. 

Most of all, know that I love you all and hope that all is well (and that you're enjoying the nice, cool weather for me).

Peace out.


P.S. I was speed walking nearby. In a suit? Yes. It's called...formal speed walking!

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Monday, November 7, 2011


Hi there everyone. 

You`re probably wondering why I`m writing on Monday instead of Wednesday. We got a call yesterday saying that President Hacking was changing Pday to Monday, So here I am, writing y`all an email.

This week has been pretty sweetawesome. We found some people to teach, and have also been working with some less active members. Yesterday we taught Annie, whose parents are members, but inactive. She went to church a couple times a couple years ago, but since then had lost all contact with the church. We taught her about the Restoration of the Gospel and she accepted a Book of Mormon to read. My comp every now and again will just kind of leave me alone during a lesson. was awkward at first, because I`d get done with what I wanted to say, and then kind of look over at him, and he`d just stare sraight ahead. Ah! During the lesson with Annie, I did most of the teaching. It`s tough...because sometimes I get stuck in a hole and don`t know how to pull myself out, but I think it went pretty well. I commited her to read the Book of Mormon and to pray to know if it`s true. And my companion doesn`t leave me alone because he`s mad or anything. It`s so I can learn to kind of take command of the lesson. Because this next transfer I could be senior companion and then what? I`ll have to take control of all the lessons. Eek! Hopefully I`m not senior companion next transfer...but who knows? :P Jaymes Walters just got put in as senior companion, and he`s only been out 3 or 4 months. 

I think most of that made sense. I`m not feeling as...flowy as I usually do when I write. Have I just confused you all to death, or are we alright? 

I really wanted to send pictures today, but we`re going to Cañaveral to the Mall after this, so I didn`t bring my adapter. I was hoping they`d have a computer here that`d have an SD port, but nope. Nada. Hehe. Nothin. Zilch. Noodle. 

Nada. Naaadaaaa.

This week, Elder Pino from the 70 is coming to our zone conference! I`m excited. They also told us he wants to interview 3 Missionaries, and look at 3 apartments. Hehe...we`re going to be doing a lot of cleaning today. :P I think it`d be so cool to be interviewed by him. I love interviews. I don`t know why, but I have always loved interviews. They just give me a spiritual boost. Like a little "keep up the good work" sticker or...something. Yeah. Anyway... 

Life`s good. I don`t really know what else to say. Any questions? Comments? Chismes? Chistes? Dudas? Aclaraciones? 

What are you doing, Toothless? We need her to like us!

Welp. I think I`ve run out of things to say. I hope all is well back home. I pray for y`all every day. Onward, ever onward. :)


Elder Joey

P.S. Did you know that in Colombia, and many central/south american countries, it`s impolite to point with your finger? So you have to point with your lips. "You have to pucker up your lips, alike adis." ;)

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Wednesday, November 2, 2011


Hello all. :) How are you today?

This week was...different. I have a new companion, Elder Acosta from Perú, and he's way cool. He's been out 19 months, so he knows a ton. He pretty much teaches circles around me. But I'm not here to compare, sino que to learn. Saying "sino que" made more sense to me than saying "but" so I did. The Spanish is coming really well. I had kind of a funny experience the other day. We were talking with hermana Gladys, one of our recent converts, and while she was talking, I suddenly thought, "She's speaking Spanish. I'm understanding her. When did this happen??" Haha... Kinda weird, but cool. :) I have truly been blessed with the gift of tongues. Yeah, we went to Ecuador 6 weeks, and I studied 3 years in High School, but there are gringos here with more experience than that, plus half their mission here that still sound gringo. I'm not going to say I sound native, but the gift of tongues could refer to the accent, couldn't it? Every now and again, people tell me I don't sound gringo. One lady asked me if I was from Spain. I almost told her yes. ;) Anyway, I really do believe I have been blessed with the gift of tongues, and I am ever so grateful. It's wonderful to be able to communicate. My companion speaks English pretty well. Not...fluent, but he understands most things. :) It's fun speaking English again.

We haven't had much success this week. At least...not that we can see. We're short on investigators. As in...we don't have any. That's not true. We did start teaching one family last week, and they look like they might progress. Nubia and Alvaro. The only problem is the same problem that everyone here has. They're not married. "Unión libre" is an epidemic here. The difference with this couple is that they both want to get married. But Nubia hasn't divorced her old husband, so there are some complications there. Elder Acosta always says, "Hay que tener fe." You gotta have faith. I do have faith. I sincerely hope that we can get them married so they can be baptized. There's a notary here that they call the Mormon notary. Almost all of the people that work there are members. So, if someone needs to get married we have an in, and can help them out. The only thing we can't help them with is the money. Anyway, Hay que tener fe.

I'm pretty sure I've sweated off 5 kilos this week. Then again, we eat about that much every day. Yesterday, we went to a neighborhood called Belencito, or Little Bethlehem. It's basically at the top of a mountain. The interesting thing about the classes here is that the rich people all live in the valley, and the really poor people live up on the bench. The higher up you go, the humbler it is. Anyway, we went to visit a less active sister por allí. (This was about 2 hours after lunch...) This sister usually gives us food, but I wasn't expecting what she gave us. It was another lunch! But bigger than the first one. A plate full of rice, chicken, patacones (double deep-fried plantains. Yum.) and a whole plate of fruit salad. Then there was the jar (it was actually a beer mug, but she doesn't use it for that.) of gaseosa. Uh...soda. Carbonated beverage. Whatever. I ate all of mine, and my companion was struggling. He doesn't have a big gringo stomach like me... So I helped him out with half his salad and a patacón, and gave him some of my soda. It worked out, but wow. Lots of food. Lots and lots. We don't do enough walking for that amount of food. Haha. 

I'm sorry, I don't have pictures today. I forgot my adapter. I'll have to send them next week. I hope you're all enjoying Utah weather. I'm trying not to complain about the heat, because this last transfer, they sent a gringo to Barranca, and if you ask anyone around here, they all say it's an infierno. Super-caliente! So I'm just chillin here. Aguantando. And being grateful that I'm not in Barranca. 

This morning, I read 2 Nephi 3. It's a very personal chapter for me. It says my name 11 times. Heh. Actually, I really love it because it talks about Joseph Smith, and the Book of Mormon. Verses 12 and 15 are some of my favorites. I remember someone in the MTC telling us that the first word spoked by Heavenly Father in this despensation was "Joseph." God knows and loves each and every one of us. It's difficult at times to develop a personal relationship with God. I feel at times like He's so far away. But then I remember the primary song that says "but I feel Him close beside me as I pray." Or...something. Prayer is really the best way for us to grow close to our Father in Heaven. We need to be faithful in our prayers and communicate openly with our Father in Heaven. Then we will truly be able to feel Him close beside us. 

Well, I hope everything is well in Utah. And if you're not in Utah, I hope everything is well, wherever you are. Go to church. Pray often. Study your scriptures daily, and Heavenly Father will bless you in ways you can't imagine. It really is amazing how much He gives us for doing so little. Such a blessing, eh? :)

I love you all. Until next week,

Elder Cannon

P.S. Would someone please listen to Lex de Azevedo's "If you could Hie to Kolob" for me? Sure appreciate ya. :)

P.P.S. How many legs does a fish have? And how many wings on a cow? I wonder, yup. I wonder.

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