Monday, September 28, 2009

Thanks to Cheryl Carse I can now upload pictures to the blog spot. Cheryl has been a great coach in getting us started with the blog. We hope you enjoy the journey along with us.
This is us at the MTC in Provo Utah and where we took our first steps in to the world of Latter Saint Missionaries. If you take a really close look at our expressions you will see in our eyes that we have just discovered exactly how far from home we are going.
This wonderful young couple are Hermano and Hermana Chauca. Jorge was our "tele-tutor" that tried to teach us espanol over the phone. He did a really good job, we didn't.
This picture was taken at the CCM (MTC) in Lima Peru. We took refuge here for two weeks while another group of maestros attempted to teach us espanol. This peaceful tranquillo part of Lima is where the younger north american missionaries receive an additional 6 weeks of language training. We were the first couple to receive training here. Muy agradicido.
This is our Latino crew, they are all from Latin American countries. They were so polite, kind, and helpful to us. They so wanted us to speak espanol.
These are two angels of mercy, Hma. Ore and Hma. Narciso. When they found out that we only got two weeks of language training and then out to the field, not the mission office, they took pity on us and devised an intensive training schedule and worked with us everyday. Hma. Alegria, Hmo. Revellado, Hmo. Carlos and many others were so good to us. We love them all.
Our north american crew, the highest compliment we can pay to these young men is that there is not a mother in the world that would not be proud to claim them as hers. Hemana Whitney, tambien.
I could not resist the opportunity to put a picture of me at the ocean in Cerro Azul. This funky summer resort is in the Canete area so we went proselyting here one day. We had a seafood lunch in open restaurant by the ocean. We paid for it more than once if you get my meaning.
This is baptism in the Canete Branch. A young sister that the Hermanas had been teaching. Other members of her family had previously been baptised.
The mission President came to town to interview the missionaries so we convinced him to by us all lunch/diner. I was not hard as he loves to eat as much as the next missionary. We all love the president he is on high octane fuel all the time.
Most preparation days (our 8 hours off) we get together as a zone and have fun. This particular day we played games, got messy, sun burned, and ate food. What can I say, any day that includes a sun burn is a great day.
That is flour that Elder Leon is taking bite of, some games you just don't want to lose.
We had been walking for about three hour this day and we encountered this little parade of children in traditional dress dancing in the street. They celebrate many things here and this must be one of them.

We were back in Mala this past Saturday for a baptism and took this picture from the 3rd floor window at the Elders apartment. When you look closely at the fore ground of the picture it looks like a demolition site. No, it is just how things look. Some buildings were damaged in earthquakes, some never had a roof to begin with and others were built that way so the could build on top of them. The Church is on the main floor of this building

I don't know how I duplicated this picture because you can only see part of why I took the picture. Look at the crosses, they all lean. They have been leaning for years. This across the street from our chapel.

Here we are it looks like we are waiting for a bus
We were waiting for a bus. There is no baptismal font at the chapel so charter a bus and take everyone that wants to go down to the ocean where we hold our service and have the baptism.
We meet in the shelter of the rocks and have our service. It is really a spiritual meeting, at least at this time of the year when there is almost no one at the beach. The few that were there came and joined our service.

Just as they were baptizing Darril a wave hit them from behind and almost swept him away. It was all that Elder Boulton could do to hang on to him.
This is Elder MacAlister in the middle. He is the Branch President in Mala. He does a great job and the people love him.
This humble church is in Quilmana (Kill-mah-naw). It is also in our district. It takes about an hour to get here from our place in Canete. Words to describe the circumstances here are hard to articulate because the feeling that you have meeting with Saints here eclipses what you feel in any of the new well appointed buildings in north america.
A fond adios to Hermana Cure. Her mission actually end several months ago and when she came home to Lima Peru the asked her to serve anther 3 months as a ward missionary here because they were one sister short in the mission. So last night we had the missionaries from the zone come to our home for cake and to say good bye to everyone that was being transferred today.

We did get our furniture sorted out on Saturday and we are finally settled. We have created a very comfortable home and feel quite safe in this environment. Outside of our little haven is a bit different and we must be very careful about the places and the times we go.

We have been having an amazing week visiting less actives (menos activos) and investigators. We have sisters in the branch where we live so it is easy for us to do splits. I take a member of the branch and his wife and one sister to interpret and we visit menos activos and Debbie and the other sister visit investigators.I could never have imagined that the Lord could work through us to affect the lives of people here, especially with the pittiful amount of language we have.
We have 4 branches(approximately 1400 members in total) and 12 missionaries in our district that we are asked to motivate, strengthen, and watch over, in a general sense. We are still in the process of getting to know each branch.

If you are interested we have wonderful story, true story, that we would love to share with those that believe in miracles. Write and we will send it.

Elder and Hermana


  1. The picture of the walk into the ocean is really awesome, Deb.

  2. Pictures! Tons of them! Now we can really follow your story and get a feel for what your life is like. Great job! I know that must've been painful for you to upload them, but it gets easier with practise. Honest.

  3. Your blog is so much more exciting with pictures! Thank you to Cheryl for the blog tutoring!

  4. I love the pictures. Good work. I'm so glad you are having such great experiences along with your trials. I'm starting to understand how it is hard for some missionaries to come home when it is all over. Probably not difficult to come home but difficult to leave the experiences and people behind.

  5. Thanks for the wonderful update! What an incredible experience to baptise in the ocean!! The baptismal composition of walking into the ocean was beautiful!!
    I totally understood what you said about the feeling of the saints in Latin America! I'm feeling jealous! It is the special spirit of the people that I miss the most from my mission!
    You've really begun to adapt to your surroundings!
    !Que andan con los angelitos!

  6. Dear Brother and Sister Whitney
    I am Sister Shauna LaBeau's mother and she gave me your blog address. I have enjoyed reading about your experiences. Shauna doesn't tell me about the living conditions and it is nice to hear what it is like. Shauna has spoken highly of you. Thank you for posting a blog. I enjoyed the pictures.
    Nan LaBeay

  7. Dear Friends, you are missed but your pictures and detailed accounts bring us such inspiration and comfort. You are our brave heroes! You'll be glad you are there when we tell you that at home it is now freezing at night and we've had our first snow. Fall lasted a whole week. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Wow! You have made tremendous progress. I am sure folks enjoy being with you as usual. What great experiences you are having. I am hoping the weather is getting a bit more comfortable. Do you need hand/foot warmers for next year?

    I can look for little hand fans as your summer shifts into high gear. Let me know.

    I'm a little envious of some of the special experiences you are having, although our little Family History Center is getting busier as the release of New FamilySearch gets closer. We had a person from St. George who was surprised we weren't on it already.