Wednesday, December 28, 2016


Merry Christmas!

I really enjoyed getting to talk to all of you yesterday! I miss you all a lot and even though we talked a little longer than planned, I´m glad I was able to get to spend so much time talking with every one and seeing every one, too. 

As far as things with me and my week, it was pretty normal. In the middle of the week, we had our mission Christmas party. The party was mostly just playing sports and getting to talk with other missionaries for a couple of hours. We also had a pretty nice dinner, where we got a decent sized steak and french fries. It was pretty good. I got to see my friend from the MTC too, Elder Beck, and spend the day with him, which was nice. We did a little proselyting activity as well,which was fun. 

The mission president reminded us though of the importance of working hard and staying focused on our objective. Makes me kinda feel bad about to talking to you all for so long, but that call really lifted my spirits and gave me a real boost. On Thursday, we went on exchanges with our zone leaders. I went with Elder Gerkin. We worked in area, which is pretty different than mine. We worked really hard, though. I learned a lot about being a missionary from him. It was nice because he's an Anglo, so there wasn't a language barrier:  I was able to understand a lot about how we need to adapt as missionaries to our areas. 

Even though a lot of the mission looks the same, each area is different, with different needs and different problems. The importance is being humble, asking for help and guidance in identifying these problems from the Lord, then changing the way you find or teach so that you can invite more people to come unto Christ. It was really good. 

Friday I got sick and was up for most of the early morning. Friday afternoon when I came back to our area,  we went out with a recent returned missionary who is in the bishopric and contacted and taught our investigators. We tried to get them to come to the ward Christmas party and we were able to get some of them to. By the time of the party I was in a lot of pain though, so I didn't really enjoy myself too much. Saturday was kind of slow, since most of the people were getting ready for Christmas. We contacted a lot of members. We are trying to build a good relationship with them and work through them to find people. Saturday night we ate with the Bishop, who is a good guy, and at midnight everyone set off fireworks, so my companion and I watched that from our apartment. 

Fireworks are beautiful but only for a couple of seconds and then there gone. I think there´s a metaphor there somewhere but I´ll let you find it. 

Sunday I got to talk with all of you, which was amazing. I was very grateful for that. It was a blessing. Today we have a party as our district, since it is p-day. We are going to watch a movie and play some games possibly. It should be fun. I really want to work hard this week and try to find as many people as we can. I´m grateful for this opportunity. I will be patient and try to learn as much as I can. 

I hope you all have a great week and get a chance to relax. I'm very grateful I got to see you all. I miss you. Have a great New Years! Stay safe.

Elder McMurray 

P.S. Thank you for the photos. I really appreciate them. They´re wonderful.

Also, I´m sorry there are no pictures this week. The computer I am using does not have a port for me to put the sd card for my camera. Hopefully next week 

Monday, December 19, 2016

A Tough Week

Hello, Everyone:

I will try to get everything out that happened this week,  but I won't be able to say everything because of the time limit. Also when you see this, could you please respond immediately so we can coordinate for Christmas? I will be able to Skype. Right now we have it planned for 3:00 your time on Christmas Sunday, but I need to know if that works for you all.

As far as the week goes, it was really hard. I thought things were going good with the language, but I've been humbled. We literally have no one to teach. We have this one grandpa, Manuel, who we invited to be baptized and he said "yeah," but he doesn't want to rush things. We've taught him three times since I've been here and he hasn't gone to church once. I´m trying to learn to be patient and loving towards the people, but I've seen some things that have really upset me to my core. I thought that part of the mission would come easy for me, loving the people, since I grew up in a place where I was surrounded by so many different cultures, but it has been really difficult. It´s been extremely humbling. Contacting is hard. It´s harder when the people let you in, you teach a great lesson and think you've brought the Spirit, and then they say they´re not interested in taking anymore lessons. I don't know what there is to say. I've been very humbled. 

I don't want you guys to get upset. Part of this is venting,  I suppose. My ward, by the way, is called Año Nuevo. It´s kinda small and the people are really great, but it´s super hard getting references. If you guys have any references, please give them to the missionaries in your area!

My companion has also been really sick this week. We've had to go to the clinic or hospital a couple of times. There´s one write across from the mission offices, which is good. As of now, we will still have to go back to figure out what is wrong with him. It´s something to do with his right side. They keep saying "vesicula," which is the gall bladder or something like that. I don't know. I don't understand a whole bunch, to be honest. I don't mean to sound so down. I just didn't know this is what missionary life would be like. 

I really miss all of you. I love hearing from you all each week. I´m sorry my emails are short. One thing that´s kinda funny is everyone here loves this treat called paneton. They only have it at Christmas. It´s basically fruitcake. They love it. Thanks for telling me about Manchester City, Dad. I miss watching them play.  

I hope you week is great. I love you. I miss you all. 

Elder McMurray

PS:  Here are a few final photos of the Lima MTC.  Today is the first chance I've had to share them: