Monday, March 30, 2015


    GOOD MORNING VIETNAMMMM, or if you dont live in vietnam, hello fam and friends!

    Wow today is a crazy day because I officialy have been out for six months! In that time, I have read Our legacy, Our search for hapiness, True to the faith, and Jesus the Christ. Now I am on to the New Testament! The time has flown by, and as confrence rolls around I think about my first weekend in the mtc when I watched confrence last october. Really, the time has gone by way to fast!

    This week was a little rough, our only progressing investigator hid from us on sunday which is a good indicator of "somethings wrong" so we gotta go visit her here in a little bit to see what is up. The up side from the week was the fact that we had interviews with President and Sister Greer. They were so good, President really helped me with the things we have been struggling with in our area and we set some goals to better ourselves. Other than that, it was a pretty normal week of work. Hard, but way rewarding. OH, Here is a cool thing, remember last week when I said it had been raining for 16 days straight? well we are now on day 23 in a row with rain, but at least this week we had some lightning to make it worth it.

    This morning we had a cool experience. We went to play soccer at this field here in our area, and a bunch of random guys were playing so we just jumped in and started playing with em. This guy was like, "are you guys from the chuch?" we were like um...yeah, the church of Jesus Christ of Latter day Saints, whats up? he goes "I dont know what to do in my life but I want to be better, I read the bible every day....do you guys have any advice?" Well needless to say we did, and about an hour later he had commited to baptism for the 3rd of may and we have a meeting with him tomorrow! the only bad part...he doesnt live in our area, so we will be calling the other elders tonight to tell them where he lives so they can teach him. Basically, we were just really excited we could help him find what he has been looking for, even if we aren´t the ones who will be baptizing him.

   Funny story of the week has to do with what my good friend Elder Bodily calls "Misison Booty". When all you do is eat tortillas and walk up hills every day, your pompis get a little bit bigger and that causes lots of problems, one of which would be the fact that my suit pants are about 2 and a half sizes to small. Yesterday in church I stood up and my button popped off my pants and hit the sister teaching. It was a solid way to invite the spirit to the class.

I hope you all have a great week and would invite you all to go into confrence with a question in your heart, ready to listen diligently to the men whom God the Father has called as special witnesses of His Son Jesus Christ. I love ya all, have a greatttt week!
-Elder Draper

Our water heater

Making Tamales!

Our great investigator M

My favorite family

6 Months!!!!

The futbol field we played on today

Monday, March 23, 2015

Where did the wise man build again???

Dear family, HELLO!
Wow, this week went by really fast but we had a pretty good one. I got my new companion tuesday and he is a great guy, his name is elder Cardona. He is a way good elder and has 20 months in the mission, we are learning a lot from eachother.

This week was good/bummer, we found more new investigators this week than we did all last month BUT not one came to church which just means we have to work a whole lot harder. On the upside, I lost my memory card with the last six months of pics on it a few weeks ago but good ol cardona found it this morning. I proceeded to teach him what a "fist bump" was.
It has been raining super hard for the last two days which is good according to the high counselor in my ward who's parting words of advice were "dont worry about tracting in the rain. the more days you work in the rain, the prettier your wife will be" I HOPE THATS TRUE because it has rained for the last 16 days here. I was reading in third nephi where it talks about how the wise man built his house upon the rock and the foolish man on the sand. I sure hope our house is on some good rock.
Not much happened this week but more than anything I had a way good week of studying. I found some really awesome stuff I want to share with you all. The first is a quote that the jazz bear left after he came to Lehi last year he said "Remember, you can always tell the character of someone by how the treat someone who cant do anything for them." which I really like. 

The second is a quote for all of you who have been members for a long time, Howard W. Hunter said "A great indicator of ones personal conversion is the desire to share the gospel with others. For this reason the lord gave an obligation to every member of the church to be a missionary...thus all of us are to 'remain steadfast...in bearing testimony to all the world of those things which are communicated unto us'(D&C84:61)"

The last thing I want to share is a poem elder packer shared a few years back called the touch of the masters hand that goes something like this.

'Twas battered and scarred and the auctioneer
Thought it scarecly worth his while
to waste much time on the old violin,
but held it up with a smile
"what am I bidden, good folgs" He cried,
"who'll start the bidding for me?"
"A dollar, a dollar"; then, "two" "only two?"
two dollars and who'll make it three?
Three dollars, once three dollars, twice; going for three-" but no,
From the room, far back, a gray haired man
Came forward and picked up the bow
then wiping the dust from the old violin,
and tightened the loose strings
he played a melody pure and sweet
as a caroling angel sings,
the music ceased, and the auctioneer,
with a voice that was quiet and low,
said, "what am I bid for the old violin?"
and he held it up with the bow.
"a thousand dollars and who'll make it two?
Two thousand and who'll make it three?
Three thousand, once, three thousand, twice
and going, and gone!" said he
the people cheered but some of the cried,
"we dont quite understand
what changed its worth" swift came the reply:
"the touch of a masters hand."
and many a man with life out of tune
and battered and scarred with sin
is auctioned cheap to the thoughtless crowd,
much like the old violin.
a "mess of pottage" a glass of wine,
a game-and he travels on.
He's "going" once, and "going" twice,
He's "going" and almost "gone":
But the master comes, and the foolish crowd
never can quite understand
the worth of a soul and a change thats wrought
by the touch of the masters hand."

I love you guys, and hope that as we grow closer to the celebration of the resurection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, you may look for the touch of the Masters hand in your lives.

Have the best of weeks,
Elder Draper

Snow on the Cofre De Perote

Elder Alanis and the angry goat of naolinco

Some awesome guy on the tracks

Some worms I ate last week (not really mom)

Victor and his esposa

Last Picture with Elder Gontes

Wednesday, March 18, 2015


Hello family and friends, Happy St. Patricks day! (tomorrow)  I hope you all had a great week and want to start off appologizing for my english, I know it is awful.

This was a really cool week! Tuesday we had our multi-zone conference with President and Sister Greer. We learned a ton about working with the members in our ward and how to use preach my gospel better. President is such a good guy, and helps us so much in our areas. We did practices with other missionaries and he walked around and helped us find better scriptures, helped us identify the needs of the people we were teaching and just helped a lot!
After the conference President was like oh the sister made meat ball subs if you guys want some, so all of us run to the kitchen to grab a sandwich and we come back into the cultural hall and pres had cued up MEET THE MORMONS! It was so good! It has been playing in theaters in mexico for the last few weeks which was way cool. If you havent seen it yet you need to it is super good. You guys probs need it in english though.
This week I did divisions with my ZL elder Spainhower from Utah, it is nice to speak english sometimes but by the time we got back to the house we were both saying "wow our english is bad" We only get to speak english like once a week so a whole day of just speaking english is super weird. I was thinking this morning that it is so weird that we can just jump from spanish to english and not have to do like a system reboot or something, the gift of tounges is a real thing.
Other than that the week was pretty calm. OH, I forgot, my companion elder gontes is getting changed! He has to go to my old area in altotonga for two weeks and then his time is up and he heads home. It is sad to see him go but I am excited to work with my new companion.
A scripture I read thismorning that I really liked I wanted to share with you guys.
"For I do know that whosoever shall put their trust in God shall be supported in their trials, and their troubles, and their afflictions, and shall be lifted up at the last day" -Alma 36:3
Pretty simple but if you are going through a trial in your life right now, put your trust in God, and look to him for strength. I have really recieved a testimony that Heavenly Father hears our prayers and answers them. Sometimes the answers arent what we expect, but they will always be the ones we need.
I love ya all, and hope you have a great St. Patty's day!
Elder Draper

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Baptisms and the Caca Cascadas

Hello everyone! I hope you all had a great week, and especially want to say happy birthday to my Grandpa Ron, and Aunt Kellee, ¡FELIZ CUMPLIAÑOS!

This was a good week here in Macuitepetl, firstly we found a great person to teach this week named Kátia, she is like 21 and super super interested in the church. She says she doesn't believe in Catholicism, the Jehovah witnesses, or the evangelists and she has heard good things about the Mormons so she wanted to meet with us. We taught her sister a while ago but she didn't want anything and the other day we said a prayer in the street because all of our appointments fell through and I was like hey lets go knock on that door, we havent visited them in a while and boom we found Kátia so that was a testimony builder on answers to prayers for sure.

Saturday and Sunday we had stake conference and it was so good! The area president for all of Mexico, Elder Benjamin De Hoyos came and spoke and split the stake. The new stake is the xalapa MACUITEPTL stake so that was cool because it was like a personal shout out to our area. Victor came to the Sunday session and it was way powerful, the stake got organized 29 years ago and the church started in Xalapa in the 1950´s so Elder De Hoyos started reading a brief history of the church here and was like here are some of the pioneers, if you have been a member in xalapa for more than 50 years please stand up and our second counselor in the bishopric, who is 94 years old stood up with some others. The cool part was the brother who is 94 was asked to come up and share how he felt about the growth and he was crying and just saying he never would have believed he would live to see it. He is a great guy. I got to meet President De Hoyos and that was cool, made me lol he goes (in spanish) "elder...dr...drah...drep...drayyyyypur...Nice to meet ya elder" it was funny.

SUNDAY was the best day because finally after almost six months meeting with the missionaries, and almost 2 with us, PATY got BAPTIZED! I was really happy she asked me to baptize her and it was a way cool experience to see how she went from being really scared and nervous on the way there to super calm and teary-eyed-happy as she walked into the baptisimal font.
Today was cool, this morning we went to this little pueblo called naolinco (now-link-oh) where they make shoes and boots out of exotic skins and super nice leather. I bought some super nice shoes for like 25 bucks, sadly the ant-eater boots weren´t in my size (not kidding I was bummed to the max). The funniest part of our trip to naolinco is we wanted to visit this waterfall we had heard about and we found it which was cool. It looked all majestic and beautiful from far away at the lookout but when we got down close to it we realized why they call it the black falls. It was fulllllllll of sewage. hahaha it smelled way bad, and the trail was a joke. We left the caca cascades after a few minutes. 

Probably one of the funniest things that has happened on the mission was when we left we were walking on the trail and this really big goat was on the trail and had straight up mountain goat horns. it looked super mad and the seven of us were all way too scared to try to go walk past it, because every time we got close it would drop its head and start digging and huffing at us. we took like 20 min climbing up this tree and walking all far away and we get done and this little kid of like maybe 12 just laughs and walks right past it and scratches it on the head and goes "Freaking white people" as he walks past us. It was way funny.
Anyway, long letter this week, stay safe, do your best to not get hepatitis from Mexican waterfalls, I'll be sure to do the same.
If you want to read some way good scripture, go read 2 nephi 27 28 and 29. it is probably my favorite section of the bom lately.
Con amor mas o menos,
Elder Dr..dra...druhhh...draper.

Paty's baptism

sketchy bridge on our hike

view of our area - the green hill on the left is the cerro de macuitepetl on the right is the pico  

zone at the lookout

caca cascades

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Five Months and broken comps

Hello family and friends!

Special shout out to my dear dad who broke what we call here in the heart of central america su "muñeca" good luck with that pops!

This week was decent, we had a hard time finding new people to teach and the majority of our lessons fell through and on top of that, my comp hurt his ankle last monday pretty bad and was on crutches until wednesday BUT we did have some good stuff go down. Sunday, our investigators that were 100 percent sure to come didnt come but an investigator we stopped teaching a few weeks ago (he told us to go to heck) CAME TO CHURCH and he can get baptized asap so that is super cool we have a meeting with him tonight so hopefully we can set a goal for his baptism next sunday.

Other than that we are kind of destitute of people to teach, we have some promising references but the hard part about mexico is we dont knock doors. it does not work, and people think we are jehovahs witnesses which we arent obviously.SO we only work with references and if we dont recieve references the work gets tough a little but this week we are hoping to find a lot of new people to teach. elder gontes is really wanting to baptize before he goes home in a month so he is excited to work which is really nice.

Other than that we had a pretty normal week without incident, last night the other missionaries in our district slept at our house because we left early to play soccer this morning its cool to have four in a house every once in a while! We get laughing real hard.

In other news, I have finished Jesus the Christ which I think is the longest book I´ve ever read and now I am starting in spanish, oh and LEONARD NIMIO DIED?? That is some bummer news. 

Spiritual thought for this week is pretty simple. DONT be a sunday mormon. Non members watch members and see when you go buy ice cream on sunday or when you say naughty words so be a good mormon and follow the commandments so the people in your ward dont think mormons suck.

Love you guys

Live Long and Prosper

-Elder Draper