Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Don´t Forget Where You´re From

This week has been pretty interesting. First of all, we had Christmas here. Christmas... It´s actually really sad here, because only about 30 percent of the people here actually understand the true meaning of Christmas. Since nobody really understands how holy it really is and how important the significance of the holiday, at 12 oclock on the 24th, everyone sends off a ton of fireworks. Even though it looks really cool and normally I would really enjoy it, it made me sad to know that so many people don´t have the background that we have as members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. So many people have a limited knowledge of their Lord and Savior´s birth, let alone the knowledge of His atonement and eternal sacrifice. Which brings me to the story of the week. We ate lunch with a less active family from our ward on Saturday and they were telling us about how a family member invited them to another church one Friday night. Well, they were standing in the meeting and the loud, evangelist, rock music was playing. The dad (who lacks a testimony of Joseph Smith and the Restoration) started dancing right along with everyone and the wife told me the he looked as though he was possessed. Haha well, she felt in that moment what we should all feel in every moment. She said, Stop, stop, Don´t forget where we are from! We´re from the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints! Even though the family is less active and doesn´t go to church, the mom had the courage to remind everyone in the family where they came from. I know where come from. I know that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the true church of God and that it has been restored through the prophet Joseph Smith. I hope that everyone can always remember where they come from in every moment. It´s like the primary song that goes,¨I´m a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, I know who I am, I know God´s plan, I´ll follow Him in faith.¨ Don´t forget where you come from. Don´t forget that God has a plan for you. If you don´t know God´s plan for you, I know two guys with white shirts and a nametag that can stop by your house to tell you :) I´m a Mormon. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot

Monday, December 22, 2014

Feliz Navidad

Well this week has been pretty awesome and it´s even starting to look almost like Christmas here! It´s been raining a lot lately so at least it isn´t blazing hot for Christmas. But this week hasn´t been super eventful actually. I was hoping to have a fun story but I can´t really think of one that I had this week. Ooooh, now I remember! I do have a funny story! Haha this week we had our Christmas Conference with the Mission President on Wednesday and we all had to bring a gift for the gift exchange that was about 50 pesos or so. I decided to bring a key chain thingy that said Tucumán on it and I was hoping to get a pretty good gift. Well when the gift exchange started, everyone was getting either good gifts or funny gifts and the majority were just funny. When they called my name, I went up and grabbed a gift, unwrapped it, and found.... dirty pajamas that fold up into a pillow/envelope thing. I´m going to be honest, I was pretty pissed! Hahaha my actual thoughts were,¨Who in the world would bring dirty, old, pajamas to a gift exchange?¨ But it actually has a good ending. I know, how could there be a good ending to that? Well, Elder Salvioli, my first companion, my trainer, my papi (as it is called in the mission), came up to me and said,¨Now you´ll never forget about your papi!¨ Haha the gift was from him! Then asked me to please wash the pajamas before I wear them. I was actually pretty entertained afterwards and now I think that I´ll wash them two times and wear them from now on. But, what message can we receive from a story like this? Well, I want to start off by reminding everyone of the true meaning of Christmas. Jesus Christ is our Lord and Savior, whose birth is celebrated here in a few days. It is said that the tradition of gift giving comes from the 3 wise men who brought gifts to the boy Jesus. But I want to be more specific and say that for the most part we give gifts because we honestly enjoy the look on the kids/parents/friends faces when they receive them. I want everyone to think about the story again. When we look at Christmas for the gifts the we receive, we are always going to say,¨Who in the world would bring me these old pajamas?¨ There will always be someone with a gift a little bit bigger or more expensive or newer or more advanced.... Forget about the gifts that you get from friends, from your parents, or from Santa Claus. Remember that what matters is the love that follows the gift. My gift was aweful... But I will never forget the love that I have for an old companion because of those ugly pajamas. Christ gave us all the gift of His love. Why can´t we all just give a little bit more love to the family and to our friends? Well, I have a quote for an answer that is simple and prophetic (literally): Do it! In this Christmas, Discover the Gift, Accept the Gift, Share the Gift. The gift of love. I love all you guys! Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night! Our Father in Heaven loves you. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
I´m really sorry that I don´t have pics this week! I brought my camera but the stupid computer won´t let me download the pictures.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Paciencia y Peleas

Familia, amigos, conocidos. I hope that everyone knows how much I love them. I know that if you´re reading this, it means that you probably love me too, or at least care enough to read my awesome blogs. Haha this has been one of the greatest adventures and I owe it all to those who have helped me along the way on my journey. This week has been better and I I´m glad to say that I´m also still learning and improving every day. The only thing that isn´t improving is the weather... One day it´s burning hot and then it starts to rain for days! Yesterday was the really test of faith for all the members and all the investigators to see who would show up even with the rain and the flooding. Well, I think now is when the Lord would say,¨Oh ye of little faith.¨ Haha Because of that, I´ve been a little down because we were hoping to see a few investigators in church. After church, we studied personally and as companions and I felt that God immediately gave me a hand to lift me up. Turns out that the both of us read about Patience, an attribute of Christ, and shared about the need to, first show patience in oneself, then show that patience with your companion and with the decisions of others. In one of his emails, mi papá told me that many times life is filled with boring routines mixed with a few bursts of excitement. I´ve kind of been expecting those short bursts more often and when I don´t see them... Well, I´m not showing patience well enough. Haha but when we stop to smell the roses, we are able to see the daily miracles that are often passed unnoticed by those who are expecting the things that are a little bigger. Sounds a lot like our Christmas experience in the U.S., we wait the big gifts on Christmas day and forget the miracle of the Atonement daily in our lives. We wait to see all the family on Christmas day and forget to enjoy being with Mom and Dad on a Sunday night before starting the week again. I hope that everyone can show that kind of patience, great enough to recognize the thousands of miracles that go right under our noses. Be grateful for a mom and dad. Be grateful for brothers and sisters. Be patient with them, love them, give them a hand. Be more like Christ. It´s the least we can do for the life and eternal life that He gave us freely. Be kind. Be submissive. Be patient.
Often times when these things are lacking, the family gets fighting. Here in Tucumán the whole neighborhood was fighting because a Division 2 soccer team lost against another one. Haha it was so sad to see people getting reading to throw fists and bricks because of something so wordly and stupid. Even more, this Saturday there´s supposed to be ¨saqueos¨, or days where the people just go super crazy and rob all the grocery stores and all the shopping centers. We have to stay inside those days so don´t worry. I only wish that the people could remember this holiday in a way so much different than the way that Satan has grabbed and twisted it. 
All in all, the Spirit of Christmas is in the great Gift that God gave us. His Son. Christ is pleased when we show patience and love as He shows with us. I know it, I live it, I love it. 
Elder Philpot
I dont know if my pics are getting to the blog but I´ve been trying to send some every week! I miss a few times because the computors don´t always work.

Monday, December 8, 2014

Él es la Dádiva

Well, I have a new companion again! Haha I can´t remember if I told you guys the last time but on Monday we had transfers again and I thought that for sure I was taking off for some other area. Well, on Sunday night, they broke the news that my companion was headed to Santiago del Estero and that I was going to stay in my area as the District Leader. Here I am... still. Haha my new companion is Elder Valenzuela from San Antonio, Chile. He´s a pretty cool dude and I sent a picture in the last email when we first met eachother. He had just got in from a five hour long bus drive at 2 o´clock in the morning, poor guy. Plus, he got sick afterward so I´ve been suffering right along next to him since then, but luckily now he´s better. If there´s one thing that I know is that transfers are not fun, both physically and emotionally! The truth is that I miss Elder Blake a lot because we were such good buds and we were working so well and so hard. But I just need to strive to have that friendship with my new companion.
Familia, este mes es un mes muy especial y quiero que se trate así. This month we get to celebrate the birth and life of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Recently, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints put out a video that I would rank number 1 of all the videos that the Church has made until now! I´m pretty sure that in English it´s ¨He is the Gift¨ or you can look it up in Spanish, ¨Él es la Dádiva¨. ¨For God so loved the world that He gave His only Begotten Son.¨ In this month, we have the great opportunity to remember the most essential and priceless gift that can be given by a Father to His children. Without the life and sacrifice of Jesus Christ it would be completely impossible to return to the presence of our Heavenly Father and live as a family unit forever. This Christmas, Discover the Gift, Accept the Gift, and Share the Gift. If there´s one thing that I regret more than anything is missing the opportunities to share what I know with my friends and with my family. So I would like Elizabeth, Elijah, Nicholas, Nathan, Caleb, Sadie, Mom, Dad, and all my friends to know: I know that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. I know it. I know that He loves each and every one of us and gave His life for us. I know that He has revealed His Gospel through the prophet Joseph Smith. I shared my testimony in church yesterday and afterwards I left an invitation. I invite you, brothers and sisters, to search and find something that we don´t have a lot of right now... Time. Take a little time to read about Jesus Christ. Take time to actually think about the impact that He has had in your life, because I promise that it´s huge. And after all, ask God if He is the Christ. It will make me sad if you don´t find that sacred precious time. I try to find that time because believe it or not us missionaries are busy. But there´s nothing more important than a testimony of the truth. I´m a Mormon. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
I´m sorry but I don´t have any pics this week. I know, I´m a bum. Haha

Monday, November 10, 2014

Hace lo que Puede

First, a bit of a funny story. This friday we had Zone Training where all the missionaries in the zone get together to hear what the mission president has for us all through the zone leaders. Well, there are assignments every time when someone has to give a short talk about the things that they´d learned in their personal studies about a specific topic. Well, being me, and knowing that I would have to give the talk beforehand, decided to be a little different. Haha In the times of Jesus, the custom was that as the teacher would go up to discuss a topic in the synogogues, he would read from the ancient text or a scripture and then sit down to represent that he would then discuss the meaning thereof. So, I decided to bring my scriptures to the front of everyone, grab a chair, read the scripture, and then sit down to discuss what I learned. Haha I had to explain it to a few people but they thought it was pretty funny. Not that funny now that I think of it, but it was a fun experience. Anyways.....
In the mission, the day of judgment is Sunday. On Sunday, the missionaries get to see how many of the people they´ve been teaching will go to church and fulfill the part on their end. At times, there are multiple that go and sometimes there aren´t so many as you expected. Well, even though we expected a lot more in church this Sunday, it was one of the best days that I´ve had so far in the mission. Elder Blake and I had to teach the Gospel Principles class for the recent converts and investigators, and the topic of the week was Temples and Family History. Since there aren´t a whole bunch of people in that class (or in the ward for that matter) we sat down and gave the class like a lesson. Well, the investigators were especially vicious with the questions. What made my day is that Yolanda answered their questions in a very powerful manner, as if she had been a member for a long time. She is really someone that I look up to. After the class she told me that she was excited to prepare to go to the temple in a year. In fact, the ward is going in January and she´s already planning to go with the ward to do baptisms at least until she can enter in for herself. I feel really blessed to have known Yolanda since she first starting hearing the ¨charlas¨ or the lessons and fighting to make it to baptism. Not much time, but we also spoke with the father of a young investigator and the lesson was incredible. Afterwards, he thanked us for coming and helping him, that he´d been searching for his path and that it was time to change. Not only do I think that he will be baptized but I think that the rest of the family too will be baptized. The kids have already been listening but now we´ve come across a family that can go to the temple one day to be sealed for time and all eternity. God is always preparing His children. He´s preparing all of us, not just those who haven´t heard the Gospel. There is no end to family. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
PS. I know it sucks that I don´t have pics but hold with me. The cyber shops here aren´t so great. But I have good pics to share the next week!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Tucumán, aka, Oven

It´s starting to be super hot here in Tucumán but I find that I don´t mind too much because pretty soon a ton of fruit will be falling from the trees. Mangos are everywhere here and I´m more excited than a little kid on his birthday. Haha well, Argentina is really awesome and I really enjoy my area, especially since I just got a new companion from Massachusetts. I´m still in the same place but I´m working with my third companion in this area. When my new companion arrived the first night, I gave him two options: put away all his stuff then or go out to work. He chose the right and since then we´ve been working super hard to see progress and lots of baptisms. My comp is really chill! About my height, plays football and basketball and baseball, and is on a mission with the intentions that I like to see. Honestly, in one week with my new companion Elder Blake, we were able to almost double all of our ¨key indicators¨, or in other words, we were able to have a lot of success here in Parque Guillermina. I´ve seen lots of miracles in this week alone and I know that it´s because God is blessing us for our obedience and hard work. For example, we teach this family, the Quinteros family, of which only the dad, mom, and son are members but the two other daughters are ¨catholic¨. Well, we´ve been trying to help the younger daughter Jesica to see the importance of baptism and the importance in following the example of her family and of Jesus Christ. Missionaries have been working with them for a long time so we tried to really focus on Jesica. Well, after teaching the Restoration of the Gospel, Jesica accepted to be baptized the 22nd of November and is looking forward to her baptism with a little bit of fear, but overall convinced of her decision. There are too many miracles to share them all but I want to say that thanks to the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ through the prophet Joseph Smith, we are able to see a huge difference in the lives of millions. One can see God´s miracles every day. I have seen God´s miracles every day. Joseph Smith restored this Gospel of Jesus Christ and we can know it for ourselves. That´s a miracle in itself. Great things lie in store for those who wish to search this truth for themselves. I know it, I live it, I love it! 
Elder Philpot
PS I know I didn´t write last week but I couldn´t with all the transfers and stuff. I´ll send some good pics next week for sure!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Don´t Judge a Book by its Cover

Hola familia y amigos. This week has been kind of short for us missionaries because we basically only went out teaching from Monday to Friday. Since we had Conference on Saturday and Sunday, we got to take a little break from all the walking and sit down to listen to the living prophets and revelators. But before I talk about how much I enjoyed the talks of Conference, I want to tell a story about someone that we were able to meet this past week. Well, every few days we walk to a part of our area and look for the investigators and less active members who we hope to teach. Usually, we walk down the same street or at least pass by the street while we´re walking around doing our visits and we always see this old guy with a big old beard, sitting on a log under this humongous, tropical tree, always drinking some type of cheap alcohol from a cardboard carton. Every time that we would pass, we always would wave to him, not thinking about stopping and talking because he was just a drunk guy that wouldn´t be interested. Of course, he would always say things like ¨God bless you¨ and ¨Good Luck¨ but that is pretty normal from the borrachos in Argentina. Well, last week in church, we were talking with some members and this girl in the Young Women´s came up to us and told us about this little old man that she talked to with her friend, and how we had to visit him because he was a really good guy. She gave me the direction and I was pretty excited to see this guy who had been so open to these girls´ message. When we passed by, I was super surprised to find that it was Luis, the drunkard under the tree. Well, Luis lives alone, under that big tree, in a little house that doesn´t have a kitchen. He doesn´t see his family very often because he´s fallen a long way from what he used to be. He drinks because he can´t sleep at night from thinking about his family and wondering if they are okay. And he isn´t able to leave to look for work because the kids in the neighborhood will take the rest of the things that he has there in his little shack. I judged a book by its cover. I thought that this man was just a loco who chose the way he was living. Maybe he could have changed his lifestyle on his own but I can see how hard it would be without a little bit of help. He´s very interested in the message that we have to offer as well. I left him with a Book of Mormon, and even though he doesn´t have glasses to read it, he said he would ask a buddy to read it to him. I didn´t know if he would, or if has done it yet, but I could see the happiness that it gave him to have Another Testament of Jesus Christ in his hands so I had to leave it with him. On Friday, we got in our service clothes, called up a couple other missionaries, and headed to his shack with some breakfast and a toothbrush and toothpaste. You should´ve seen the look in his eyes. After asking some tools from the neighbors, we started to help rake the thousands of giant leaves, pick up the trash, and move all the stones and bricks to one place. Unluckily, we weren´t able to make a huge difference in the mess but we were able to start the process in changing this man´s appearance. When we go back to see him, we are going to help him shave the beard and change the clothes so that he can feel the way that he looks: fresh.
From this long story what I hope to convey is that every single person that you see: young, old, skinny, .... fluffy, smart, uneducated, funny, rude, pretty, ugly, or even a drunkard, are ALL children of God. They all deserve to feel the love of a friend, or better said, a brother or sister. Our Heavenly Father cares about each and every one of His children and hopes that they have a family here on earth, whether a family by blood or a family in spirit. For that reason, God has called each one of us to serve one another, and what better service can one give that be a friend to somebody who has none, or better said, to be a brother/sister to someone who feels alone in this big world. My testimony is that we are all here to grow together, that God has a plan for us and has sent us all here that we could uphold and strengthen one another. My invitation is that we can all be there for those who need the support of a friend. Don´t judge a book by its cover, because that book might need some brushing off and fixing up before it shines. Jesus Christ was a brother to all, likewise we must follow His example. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Yolanda will be baptized this Saturday. I haven´t heard whether she´s still smoking but I believe that she stopped the last time we visited on Thursday. If not, we´ll just keep fighting with her. I love you guys. Apply the talks of conference. They apply very well to today´s generation. Ciao
Elder Philpot

-Pictures be comin´ the next week!
-Also, Mom, before I left, the Bishop asked me to send something that you could read to the ward so they could hear a little of missionary work. You should share this story and my testimony.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Salvation cometh through Christ

To start off, I want to tell a story that made me really think on my job as a missionary. The other week we were in taxi, heading for the pension and I started to talk to the driver about the U.S. and why I´m here in Argentina. He told me right off that God didn´t send His Son to this earth. I was really shocked that I kind of just stayed quiet as he explained more about Christ being a good man with a good purpose, but He couldn´t be the Son of God because a father would never do that to his son. I tried to think about what I could say to him but then a calm came over me and I just bore my testimony that I know that Jesus is the Christ and the Son of God. Sometimes as missionaries all we can do is tell people what we know because, though they can deny my logic, they can´t deny my testimony. They can say no, no, but they can´t say that my testimony isn´t sincere. Sometimes Satan has the power to twist thoughts into disbelief but one thing I know to be true is that salvation comes through one being, and one being only: Jesus Christ, the Son of God. I love sharing the Plan of Salvation with my investigators because it helps one to see the purpose of life, but more importantly, it helps people to see that without Christ, salvation is impossible. God created a perfect plan with the perfect design, sending a perfect Son, to die that all may be perfected in Him. Through Jesus Christ, we can be cleansed from sin. Since no unclean thing can dwell in the presence of God, this accomplishment is extremely vital. Through the resurrection of Christ we may appear before God with an equally perfect body, another accomplishment absolutely vital as God has a body of perfect flesh and bones. What I do as a missionary only helps people to come to the knowledge of salvation through Christ and helps them take the necessary steps to receive the gift of the Atonement, or eternal life in the presence of our Heavenly Father and our families. I want to be with my family forever. Through living prophets, God has revealed that ability again to the world. Joseph Smith is a prophet of God. Jesus is the Christ. Salvation only cometh through His sacred name. I know it, I live it, I love it.
Yolanda is doing awesome and looks forward to her new baptism date, the 11th of October. She smokes but has decided that she stops now so that her family can receive the blessings of living according to God´s commandments. We encountered a new family, the Borquez family. The grandma told us in the second lesson that she couldn´t come to our church because her pastor said no... After saying the prayer and reading from the Book of Mormon she decided that she would come to church with us even if the pastor said no. She did. She also skipped her church on Friday and even told them to leave when they came looking for her. Haha I don´t have my camera today but I´ll send some photos next week!
Elder Philpot

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Chi, Chi, Chi, le, le, le... Viva Chile!

Well, today´s not Monday... Haha I could not write on Monday because I was on my way to Chile! Yep, Chile. So turns out that a bunch of missionaries only have their tourist visa so we had to leave the country and re-enter so that the police couldn´t take us to the carcel. I got a call on Saturday night and they told me that I´d be headed to Chile with a bunch of other missionaries and that I had to leave in the morning. When we headed out Sunday morning (by the way, it was pretty early) I found out that my good pals Elder Erickson and Elder Hampton from the MTC would be hanging out with me the whole time! So we headed out in the colectivo or bus and arrived in the mission Cordoba, and the mission home is right next to the new temple that is being built! It looks way good already. During dinner there in the mission home of Cordoba, a kid asked me where I was from and I told him that I was from Arizona. He told me that he didn´t believe me because he thought I knew Spanish already before the mission. So I played along and said I was from Buenos Aires because I have an accent from my old companion Elder Salvioli. Hahaha but I still have a lot to learn. Trust me. Just a funny story. Haha anyways we had to pick up more missionaries from Mendoza mission afterwards. At that time, we had been traveling for like 24 hours straight in bus. Then we headed straight for Chile to cross the border, eat, and then head back the way we came. The border was in the Andes!!!! We had a snowball fight in the Andes Mountains! Not many missionaries can say that they have done that. Haha but it was a great spiritual experience for me as well. I was doing companionship study with Elder Hampton and I started to talk about what I´d learned in the Book of Mormon. I have never had a love so strong for that book because it has everything that anyone could need inside it´s blue cover. The mission president is giving us all a box of Books of Mormon each so that we can give out a ton. I am PUMPED! Haha there are baptisms coming too. My investigator Yolanda is preparing to be baptized the 27th of September. When we visited she told me and my new companion that she was going to keep thinking about it. She told my new companion that if she gets baptized, she wants us to know that it was because of this boy, pointing at me, and the one that left just a while ago. What a great feeling. But even better, I called her the next day and asked if we could come the next day to teach her. She said that she couldn´t but that she was just about to call me! She said,¨I have made a decision.¨ After about five thousand years of waiting, she said,¨ I´m going to get baptized!¨ It was the best feeling I have ever felt in my whole life. I look forward to her baptism because I know that she will be a really really big help in the church. Her testimony is crazy strong and already knows soooo much. She read half the Teachings of the Prophet Joseph Smith book in a couple of nights. Haha she is the best! Anyways, I am really happy! Thanks for all the support and the prayers. I am seeing them help my mission a ton. The Book of Mormon is true. God prepares people every day to enter in at the gate. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
I forgot my camera. Next week, I´ll send a bunch!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Borrachos and Escogidos

You´re probably wondering what Borrachos and Escogidos means. Well google it... Haha just kidding, Borracho is the word for drunkard or crazy dude and escogido means chosen, to which I refer to Heavenly Father´s chosen investigators. Well, this week we´ve been doing divisions a lot to try to teach as many people as we can in different areas. Well, yesterday, I headed out with this member, Davíd Caspary, to teach of few people that live in a poorer zone of our area. Well, funny enough, right as we cross the street, we run into an investigator who knows the Bible extremely well but also likes to drink and doesn´t believe in a specific church being the church of Christ, there´s only salvation through good deeds. Well, since he knows the Bible well, he´s always speaking in a very Old Testament kind of way and David didn´t understand anything that he was trying to get at. Hahaha it just got funnier from there. David started to ask questions about what the guy was saying and so the drunk guy started to get irritated and asked him questions about why he didn´t understand. Haha finally we were able to testify a little and then he asked his famous question to David: Cual es tu gracia? Which translates to What is your grace? What he meant by the question is, What is your name, but David didn´t understand and started asking what that meant. You have to be very specific with this guy by saying what, does that word mean, or something similar but David was just making the situation worse. Haha what is your grace, what is your grace. Haha finally he said his name and things settled down. As we left, he said to me, Te quiero, and then looked at David and said, y a Vos, no te quiero, and then spat on the ground. Hahaha what a interesting guy. Now, as for God´s chosen ones. We met this girl named Yolanda and basically she has just been progressing like you wouldn´t believe! Not only does she find everything to make sense but accepts the Gospel very well. She told us last night that this had to be a sign from God because this was the third time that the ¨Mormons¨ had passed and it was as if God was telling her what to do already. She then told us that she´s the back-bone of the family and would like to be baptized and bring the rest of her family with her. What a joy I felt hearing that! God is definitely the head of this work and we´re just a couple of young guys watching Him do it all. There is no doubt in my mind that this is the work and glory of God, to bring all unto Christ through a couple of simple missionaries. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
No pics, I forgot my camera chord. Next week for sure my friends!

Monday, August 11, 2014

Spring = Summer or Winter

Freaking weather here is crazy! One day it will be ridiculously hot and then the next day it´s ridiculously cold! Haha apparently the Spring here is just a crazy pot of winter or summer. But I´m fighting through the craziness. Before I start, I´m still hanging in the same area with the same companion, Parque Guillermina with Elder Salvioli. But the other day we had divisions with the zone leaders for the day. I was with Elder Vargas and we basically just did the normal routine for the day. Since we were in my area, I was leading the whole time and basically they see how well you are progressing as a missionary and in what ways you need help. Well, apparently I´m progressing pretty awesome because Elder Vargas was telling me about how I´m going to do awesome things as a missionary because I only have 2 months in the mission field and am already really good at both the language and teaching. He told my companion that I´m going to do great things at a young age. That made me feel really good about my progress lately so I think that all your prayers have really been helping me through the rough times. Thanks so much for all the support from home! I don´t have a very funny story from this week except that my companion and I have been trying to contact as many Jehova´s Witness as possible. Haha but that´s just part of missionary work. Haha I love all you guys, thanks for all the help with your prayers. God has and will answer every single one! I know it, I live it, I love it! Ciao
Elder Philpot
-I´m really trying to work on the pics, so be patient!

Monday, August 4, 2014

Ciao winter!

Que calor!!! So one day Winter just decided to leave and now it is like a freakin jungle here! Really, the weather and climate here is more like a jungle as opposed to California. I thought that it was like Cali but that was when it was winter. Now the trees are starting to green up and the big hill by our area is getting more and more green. I´m more in the city part of Tucumán so I don´t get to pick the fruit from the trees but it will be pretty cheap here in a couple months. As for a funny story, every Tuesday my companion has to go to a meeting for leaders and I go and contact people on the streets with a different guy. Since we just had traslados, there were some new guys and another missionary had to come with us. This guy is about as white as it gets... Super tall, ginger, strong accent. Haha so here we are, three white guys, one nuevito (new guy) me, one with 6 more weeks than me, and one super tall white guy. Haha what a scene. Turns out, I speak better spanish than all three and I have the least amount of time in the mission. The thing is, I still can´t carry on a very good conversation. But, it was a fun time! One thing that I´ve really noticed is the presence of miracles here in Parque Guillermina. Really, God has put a lot of miracles in our path because we have been trying so hard to find people to bring to the gospel. Anyways, with fervent prayer, hard work, and real intent, God will grant you with any thing that is righteous. I know it, I live it, I love it. Sorry, I always run out of time. Haha un abrazo
Elder Philpot

Monday, July 28, 2014

Don´t worry, about a thing!

Hallo familia y amigos. This week was pretty awesome! Since I bought that stereo, we have been listening to lots of music and most of it has been church music. Haha Elder Salvioli has like 1500 songs on his thumbdrive so we came across a few that are less churchy. Haha one was Three Little Birds by Bob Marley! After a long day, we heard the song and could not change it. But it´s okay because I have repented and have not listened to anything like it since! Then, on Thursday, I headed to Salta to do some immigration paperwork and all that fun stuff. What´s funny is that Elder Erickson was my companion on the way there and on the way back because he was doing it too. So our companions stayed in Tucumán and we went to Salta together. Sooo awesome! Elder Erickson is definitely a life-long pal. In Salta, we went to the main square for a little because we had to go pay at the international bank there, and it was so awesome. It´s so European style and very cool, with little cafes and shops that are super interesting. When we got back, we were back with our companions for the last day of my first traslado in Tucumán, or my first six week period of transfers. Crazy! Anyways, as always, I´ve been focusing a lot on trying to really come to know the scriptures. The scriptures are one of the most powerful tools in, not only conversion, but progression in life. As we study the scriptures every day and really search how our lives can be blessed from them, we will never lack the knowledge that our Father in Heaven really loves us. The scriptures have the power to change lives for the best. I know it, I live it, I love it! Un abrazo. Ciao
Elder Philpot
PS If you have sent a DearElder, then I don´t know where to send a letter back! Haha my email is available if you just email or talk with the fam.

Monday, July 21, 2014


Hallooo, family! We got to clean the pension today. It looks way better but still we´re in South America so it´s about as good as it gets. Today I bought a stereo and a thumbdrive to listen to music. I´ll copy all the music from other missionaries and then I can listen to music the rest of my mission. A good purchase! Not too expensive, but an early birthday present. Its starting to get warm in these parts and I`m starting to wish I had brought more short sleeve shirts. But I will learn to survive because there are hotter parts of the mission, oh wait, there`s only one... It`s really humid here during the summer but I will hopefully be elsewhere when summer full on hits. So the title is something that is absolutely ridiculous about the language here in Argentina, Tucumán. ¨Perro¨ means dog in spanish but since the people can´t roll their r´s, the say it with an sh. What´s funny is that absolutely no dog has an actual name... Hahaha so the dogs will be barking and all the people will scream,¨Persho¨! It´s the funniest thing! The funny thing is the dogs will stop after that. Such an awesome part of the culture that we laugh about all the time. Anyways, I´ve been reading from Jesus the Christ a bit lately and am starting to realize that the more one learns about Christ, the more absolutely amazed and grateful for his sacrifice one becomes. I don´t have much time because I get quite a few emails and my family is big but I want to stress the importance of Christ in our lives. Every week we get to remember Christ through the Sacrament and be completely clean once again. What a blessing. Remember that Christ endured immensely for each and every one of us. Use His gift. Christ died that we may all live again and more importantly, as families. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
PS Still no baptism. It´s been tough but we are planning to have many in the next month.

Monday, July 14, 2014

Awww.... Perdió!

Argentina lost... What a bummer. But also a blessing! Haha what´s good is now the people won´t be partying and I´ll be able to talk to them but also they have humbled themselves a little and will be more receptive to the gospel. Haha the bad thing is that now, I´m from Germany. I have light hair and fair skin so I´m automatically a German in the eyes of the people. not to mention I´m 1/4 Dutch. Haha already, this crazy lady came into the cyber shop and kissed me and my companion on the cheek (which we cannot do) and said to congratulate our people for the World Cup! Haha what a crazy bunch of people I have to work with here in Tucumán. But before the Final yesterday in church the bishopric came up to me and asked me to a give a talk. Of course, my freaking third Sacrament meeting and they ask me to give a talk. Luckily, I´m actually pretty good at the language now so I shared some scriptures, told the people to repent and change, and went back to my seat. Definitely had the help of the Gift of Tongues. I´m really growing here and I honestly have never felt so much learning in my life than I do now. I´ve been reading tons, in fact, I already finished Our Heritage. I feel so grateful for the sacrifice of all the prophets and early Latter-day Saints. We enjoy so much thanks to them. I gotta go but just know that we will always know the "truth by its fruits". This is the most delicious fruit, figuratively, and I can´t help but enjoy every second of it as a missionary. The church brings infinite good. I know it, I live it, I love it.
Elder Philpot

Monday, July 7, 2014

Vamos, Vamos Argentina!

The streets are soooo wild here after the Argentina games that every time they play, we have to head to the pension and study because nobody will even consider letting us in. After they win, the city sounds like it´s in a war zone. Haha super loud explosions, screaming women and children, engines roaring, and flags soaring. Kinda reminds me of the 4th of July that I didn´t have. I still celebrated in my heart though! I´m so grateful for the freedoms that we enjoy in the U.S.A. and especially the luxuries that everyone takes for granted. Anyways, Argentina still beats the U.S. in a few things. The donuts and pastries are beyond celestial, and also really cheap. We have a hard time resisting the temptation to head to the small donut stand and buying huge donuts for only 4 pesos. The foods here are very homestyle and never spicy (Que Lastima), but still super rico.
My area is actually really small. Maybe 2-3 square miles and it´s like the suburbs of the city. The weather is a lot like California and there are orange trees everywhere! Still a little cold but it´s getting hotter every day. The people are super nice and the kids always come up to us and scream, Hallo! Then they ask us how to say their name in English. Haha they still don´t understand that every name in Spanish is basically the same in English. Haha I´m in the stake Tucumán Oeste and the ward that we´re in is pretty small-maybe 50 people in the chapel on a good sunday. But we´re working hard to increase that number every week! I´m beginning to understand almost everything and really starting to participate more in the lessons. Give me a couple more weeks and I´ll be a key player in every lesson. Everyone tells me that my accent is great... Todavia falto the vocabulary. But that will come with time!
Anyways, I´ve been reading a lot from the Missionary Reference Library and even finished Our Search for Happiness. I´m just really bummed that when I finish the books in the collection I´m not going to have deeper doctrine to read... But that´s what the scriptures are for! Haha the deeper books will be waiting for me when I get home from my 2 years. I´ve also been reading from the Liahona´s a lot. One story that I read yesterday has not only really hit me, it´s something that drives me to choose the right continually for the rest of my life. The story starts with a Cherokee telling a story to his son. There are two wolves inside of me, fighting to overcome the other. One is everything evil. Pain, regret, hate, sorrow, suspicion, lying. The other is everything good. Love, charity, kindness, rejoicing, honest, virtue. The father told the boy that the same battle was being fought inside of him, and every other person on the earth. The son then asked his father,¨Which one will win?¨ To which the father answered... Whichever one you feed.
I think that this story cuts life down to two decisions, feeding the evil inside of oneself, or feeding the good. We must feed the good! As a result of choosing the good we are promised an infinite amount of joy. No person deserves to succumb to the evil one inside of him. Thanks to my little brother Elijah, I know that every person (including me) has that great potential as a missionary to choose to feed, not only the good wolf inside of me, but the good wolf in every person that I pass by in Argentina. As we all feed the good in our lives, the quality thereof will increase as well. I know it, I live it, I love it!
P.S. Still can´t find a spot with wi-fi and I will lose all my pictures if I format the camera here so be patient with me. 
Much love,
Elder Philpot

Monday, June 30, 2014

Tucuman, Week 2!

Familia y amigos!
Well, the adventure continues! It´s been such a learning experience to
come on a mission, especially when it comes to the gospel. I´ve been
trying to learn as much as I can lately because there´s so much that I
need to learn to be a better missionary and a better servant of Jesus
Christ. But what I really loved this week is that we had Stake
Conference. In Stake Conference, I learned that we are soo blessed to
have the Gospel in our lives. The people of Argentina have very little
and yet they find all that they need and more in the Gospel. We have
the Book of Mormon, Another Testament of Jesus Christ that is a guide
to how we must live our lives to gain eternal life. We have a living
prophet who receives revelation for the things that pertain most to
our generation. The church down here in Argentina appreciate the
prophets and apostles so much, and sometimes we take them for granted
because we live near them and can even see them at General Conference
if we really wanted to. But most of all, I´ve come to be extremely
appreciative of the family. The family is the most important unit of
God´s plan for us. Since I´ve been here, I´ve realized how much the
suffering of my parents and family before them have blessed my life,
especially being lucky enough to live in the US with them. Sometimes
the family unit is really distorted by the world but never forget the
importance of the family. I´m so grateful for my family. For a father
that works hard so that I can be where I am today. A mother that shows
her unending love for me. And a ton of brothers and sisters that share
my awesome times and my bad times. Look around and really appreciate
what you have, because the people here have about 1/100 of what you
have and yet still appreciate it.
Anyways, we will hopefully have a baptism this week! Dante. A real
capo. I will update you all next week.
Count your blessings and the Lord will give to those who give thanks.
I know it, I live it, I love it.
Elder Philpot
PS The camera doesn´t plug in here so you´ll have to wait a while to
get them all!

Monday, June 23, 2014


Hola familia y amigos! I arrived here in Argentina on Tuesday! The flight was so long and exhausting but I got through it! It was so awesome to see all the missionaries on our flight preaching the gospel in the terminal and on the plane. God really is hastening the work! So I arrived in Salta and had the orientation, ate, and slept at the hostal nearby. I was with an Elder from Nicaragua and another three from Paraguay who actually didn´t speak Spanish but some crazy native language so that was cool. In the morning we worked out visa stuff and then the mission president called out the new companionships and areas. As I was called up, I hoped that I would get a companion that spoke only spanish. I got what I asked for because I was assigned to Tucumán, Parque Guillermina with Elder Salvioli from Buenos Aires. As I went to give him a hug, he grabbed me and gave me a huge kiss on the cheek! Haha really surprised me. But now we´re in my first area and it´s been a little tough. They speak a really different spanish with ¨vos¨ and ¨sh¨ and even their double r´s are sh´s which is way different. So I was a little intimidated at first because I understood about 30 percent of the conversation but slowly I´m catching up and I definitely see the Gift of Tongues working in my life. The people are way nice here so that also helps a lot. The pension is pretty big and more nice than I expected some parts to be. It´s still pretty different but with creativity and some work, we can actually do quite a bit with the little that we have. It´s times such as these when prayer has been a major part of my life. Every time I feel discouraged or feel that I need help, I turn to the Lord with all my heart and ask him to help me to feel His love and feel His help every day. And I feel it. God truly does answer prayers as long as we have faith and show willingness to give it our all in life. The investigators that we have right now aren´t very serious but I know that we will have success with hard work and faith.
Funny thing about Argentina before I take off. The ´serpientes´ here are really just that, snakes. And by snakes, I mean the girls who try to chase after the missionaries. That always kiss and whistle at us because we are both fair skinned and have on nice clothes. It´s funny to think that when I tried to look for girls to date they were´nt inclined, and then I get on my mission and they chase. Haha but I´m keeping them at bay for now. Pray for me, and for my ability to learn to language. I love all of you. God hears our prayers and answers them. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot
P.s. My camera is out of battery so I can´t sent pics but next week I´ll have plenty!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

La semana final!

The travel plans came on Friday! I'm headed straight for Argentina (which I was a little worried about because the visa can be hard and I was worried that I'd be transferred elsewhere). The first flight is to Georgia and flies from 11 to 4 so it's a long first one, then I take an 11 hour flight down to Buenos Aires. Unlucky for me, I have to travel back up to Salta which can be either really miserable or kinda short. If they book me a flight, then it's about 2 hours up to the city, but if I hop on an bus then the drive can be up to 17 hours. Haha on dirt roads. But it isn't summer down there so it won't be super hot, hallelujah. So, pray for the flight, guys, pray for the flight. Also, something pretty awesome: the flight to Buenos Aires has every single Argentina missionary on it, so there's going to be about 30-40 missionaries on that flight. Not to mention that all the South America missionaries are going to be on the flight to Georgia, so you can imagine the glory of 40-50 missionaries walking off the terminal in Georgia, and everyone handing out Books of Mormon and preaching the Gospel. Haha it'll be a party!
As for stuff going on around here, we have stopped teaching our teachers and begun teaching the other missionaries. We still teach Gabriel every morning but more about him a little later. As we have been teaching the other missionaries in our district, it's been fun to see the kind of Spirit that can dwell in a pretend lesson with people you joke around with in the dorm. Seriously, I love these guys and they probably aren't even real people! Haha (shows the isolation they put us in). But, I just can't wait to see the day that I see the first person on my mission actually change their lives and enjoy the peace and happiness that is The Church of Jesus Christ. And that doesn't mean baptizing a bunch of people. Lately, every time I've heard people talking about baptism statistics, I've gotten really mad. Because to me, that's always been looking at people as a number that you can show off to people when you arrive home. I care about people. I care that they are converted to the Gospel of Jesus Christ. My dad sent me an email today about this today and it really helped me out. I'd been preoccupied a little because I heard some other missionaries talking and almost dissing another Mission area because the baptism rate wasn't as high as other areas. My dad didn't know about it and yet in the email, he told me about the importance of conversion. That, even though baptism is important, the conversion of someone (REALLY changing their lives) is what we as missionaries are looking for. And often times, missionaries just bring the Spirit and he does all the work. So, I prefer to look at the people I have loved. Because I haven't converted anybody. The Spirit of God will do that. I get the amazing opportunity to help people change their lives through baptism and confirmation which signifies the amazing event that has already been taking place. That's what I've really been learning this past week. Especially with Gabriel. We teach him every morning and even though we know he's Mormon, we love to just teach him. He's probably one of my best friends here in the MTC and he's almost 50! Haha (once again, shows the isolation they put us in). And yet, every day I see not only him, but myself, changing as the Spirit guides our constant conversion to the Gospel. But, tomorrow, we have to say goodbye to Gabriel... Real bummer but I know we'll be buds throughout the mission and when I get back, I'm gonna call him up and make him cook me some authentic Chilean food. Haha it's fun to see that those friendships from a mission are already forming.
Alright, I gotta give the funny story of the week. So, me and my companion Elder Erickson have been having this ongoing battle with the other companionship in our room. It started off small but it is getting really intense lately. Every time we get home earlier than the other companionship, we hide all of our stuff and hide anywhere we can in order to scare the crap out of them. And lately, we've been having no success because the hiding spots have been used up. So one day, Elder Erickson and I had to head up to main campus for his doctor's appointment thing and we got back just before the other companionship was to arrive back. They thought we were on main campus so it was the perfect opportunity. Now, there was a little pre-planning of course, and we knew that everyone in the room had a bowel schedule because the food here is really bad for your health. Haha so we knew that a certain Elder would be making a trip into the bathroom for a pre-volleyball bathroom break. So Elder Erickson hid in the bathroom cupboard just under the sink and I hid in the kitchen cupboard for the unveiling of an awesome prank. So, in walk the Elders. Of course, they look around for us because this is an ongoing ordeal of scaring but decided that we were still on main campus (we placed everything perfectly so they would never think we were home). And of course, a certain Elder, who will not be named, walks into the bathroom, locks the door, and turns on the fan. I almost blew my cover laughing because I knew that everything was just too perfect. A couple seconds later, Elder Erickson flings open the cupboard doors and gives the funniest, blood curdling scream which echoes through the dorm. We finally had our revenge. I think that it's easy to guess that the outcome was as expected... Perfect. 
People matter, whether it's showing you care through teaching or playing pranks. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot

Nerdy missionary chillin
Lunch: selfie
Zone: sunday selfie
We make snowmen with our playdough, I mean potatoes
Funny kid: him and I always peep around corners at eachother
The district: model posing
Companionship #1
Devotional with BYU roommate and wardy
Two years worth of Journal and Pen

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Wednesday, June 4, 2014

One more P-Day and I'm out!

The days really start to blend together once you get like 3 weeks in so I can't even remember what happened this week... Luckily I got my journal with my super awesome missionary stories at my side. Haha Spanish is coming pretty quickly and I feel confident giving lessons in all Spanish so now we just have to see how it goes when I get there. My "investigator" Gabriel is from Chile and says we have awesome accents and are super good for how long we've been here. Oh, Gabriel. I am going to miss that dude so much! He's definitely one of my best buds! He's the funniest dude that I have ever met in my whole life. Last friday we had study cycle and so we went outside to study. Gabriel showed up 15 minutes later and we talked for like two hours. He told us about his super-fear of spiders and how he'll make his wife come kill the spiders because he can't get out of the bathroom unless it's moved out of the way. Hahaha and all about Chile and how there are big Tarantulas there. He got surrounded one day by them and ran home crying to his mom. He also says that he sees them when they aren't really there so whenever he goes home to Chile, he calls his mom ahead of time and makes her clean the house really well so that there aren't any arañas in the house. This guy is a full grown adult. Hahahaha I really wish I could take that guy with me because we have some fun times together. I also wish I could take my teachers with me, Hermanos Rasmussen and Pemberton. They help me grow so much. They definitely help me feel the Spirit way more strongly than I ever have in my life. In class with Hermano Rasmussen, we have some of the most awesome experiences because he's so determined to help us have those life changing experiences in the MTC. When he was in the MTC, he said he didn't have any crazy Spiritual experiences so he wants to help us have those kinds of experiences in the MTC. It's working!!!! I learned the other night that when asking commitment questions, we can't just wait til the end and then bust out some 'Will You' questions. We need to share the invitations when the Spirit is most strongly because it isn't just us asking at that moment. It's the Lord witnessing to them that he also expects it of them. So we tried it out on our TRC investigator Alan who is "Catholic". The lesson went super well! We still have a little smoothing out to do but overall we are improving super well. 
At the conference, on Sunday, the speaker was the Online Proselyting director for the church at his talk was great. When we have as many non-member friends on facebook as we do, and not share the gospel with them... It just doesn't make sense. People deserve your happiness. Don't be selfish with salvation. Sometimes we are scared of what people will think of us but the other night Elder Cameron (texas guy) told us about the captain on his soccer team who was a real drinker in high school. He would drink before soccer games and on weekends. He would tease Elder Cameron for being Mormon. And he was the last person you would expect to ever change his ways. He was baptized 2 weeks before we left on our mission... All Elder Cameron did was set an example and the one who joined the church was someone who was least likely to ever be baptized. Now they will be playing soccer with eachother at BYU when they get back from missions. Now think of someone that you would never expect to join the church or even change the way they are at all. They want the Gospel. They just don't know where to find it and don't know what it feels like. So be the good shepherd and bring people back to the fold, because your friends deserve happiness and it isn't your choice to keep it from them. When you don't ask them to be baptized, you are condemning them to a life of darkness. Please, share the gospel. People deserve friends better than you if you are unwilling to give them the greatest gift in the world: Eternal Life. I promise that as we share the gospel, people will see that it is true. It brings good and happiness. This is the most happy that I've ever been in my life and it's only because I'm sharing eternal life.
Last story. My grammy isn't doing so well. She has been struggling with strokes and I've been getting letters from Elizabeth about how she's been doing. My grammy says she doesn't know how much longer she will be around so she's going to live with my parents to spend time with my family. It's tough, definitely, but I realized something as I wrote Elizabeth back about my grammy and shared this is testimony meeting on Sunday. My grammy isn't supposed to go yet. I know it because I don't need her help on my mission yet. I feel that, even though she's doing poorly, she won't pass away until I really need her help on the other side. So I'm comforted. I know that she will be with me whether in this world or in the next. She's always going to look out for me and I only know that through the Gospel and the teachings of the Plan of Salvation that I will never have to say goodbye to her. That is what we can share with others. There isn't anyone I know who doesn't want to be with some member of their family forever. So share what you know and I promise that the Lord will not only bless you for it, but the lives of all those that you touch. There is joy to those who save the one. I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot

P.S. I get my travel plans on Friday!

Me and Ganzo
Me and the big world map
Playing my soul on the Harmonica
We´re in the real world!

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Wednesday, May 28, 2014


Well, I'm at the halfway mark and boy am I excited to get out there and teach some real people! It's crazy to think that I've been here for only 3 weeks because it kinda feels like forever but it also feels like its only been a few days. I don't even know how that works. Haha but all is awesome here at MTC West Campus. Sometimes the food is great, sometimes I prefer to skip meals but I'm still grateful that I've had the chance to come here! I realize now how important it is that I enter the MTC the day that I did because there are people impacting me, and vice versa, that sometimes are unexplainable! This past week we were having a lesson on asking inspired questions that come from the Holy Ghost. Similar to the questions that Ammon asked Kind Lamoni, and basically read his mind through the Spirit and taught him with only simple questions. Anyways, we were asking an investigator (our companions acting as investigators) questions that brought the Spirit and taught with power, but that didn't work very well because we were just acting. Then our teacher told us to just speak to each other as ourselves and ask an inspired question that we knew came from the Spirit. We were invited not to speak unless we knew that it was what the Lord wanted us to say. So the classroom was silent for about five minutes and since I was first, I was just wondering what in the world Elder Erickson needed. Until as time was running long, I realized that I was thinking in the wrong direction! I changed my mindset a little and then asked Heavenly Father if he would please give me what I needed so that I could comfort mi compañero and let him know what God wanted him to know in that moment. And it came to me. I asked him a simple question and it was exactly what he need to hear. I then gave him a little insight that I felt he needed to know from the Lord. Wow, talk about neat! And then we switched roles.... I didn't even know what he could possibly ask me. I thought of like 4 or 5 things that he could have said to me and I would have been happy. But he didn't. He asked me something that I knew God wanted to remind me of. "Are you here on a mission for the right reasons?" That hit me right at home. I replied," I think so... partly because I want to set an example for my little brothers, and I guess partly because I need to help myself and others to know the truthfulness of the Gospel." My companion could have left it at that and I would've felt the appreciation of my Father in Heaven, but then I heard his voice. It didn't sound like it was coming from Elder Erickson though. I knew that through Elder Erickson, the Lord was speaking to me. He said," Your brothers love you and your decision to come on a mission, and you're setting a good example for them." It's safe to say that at that point, many tears were shed. I don't even know why! The Spirit was so strong and I just felt the love of God. I hope that you can all experience something similar because there is nothing quite like the testifying of the Spirit of God. It was definitely a highlight that I wanted to share, because I know that everyone can feel that love and peace, if they will just trust in the Lord and follow the example of Jesus Christ. I'm definitely not perfect. But I'm trying so hard! God sees that. He's happy with you and your efforts.
Okay, funny story! One of the Elders in my District (Elder Cameron) is a total Texas dude from the swamps near Louisiana and the other day he saw a 'Patito' (duckling) running on the street alone. So what does he do? He takes it back to the apartment, sticks it in the tub, feeds it a brownie, and then leaves it in there until we get back from class at 9:30 at night! Haha he named it 'Ganzo' which means Goose so I don't even know where he got that and he said that he saved it and that he is his mother now. He said he was going to soothe it with his harmonica and learn to play the song 'Rubber Ducky'. Hahaha what's funny is this little duck actually started following Elder Cameron after we tried to let it go. But eventually he got in the little pond in the middle of Campus and started living the life. Eating nice grime and bugs from off the water and swimming around like a champ. But now we can't find him... He's most likely dead because mother ducks will kill their young if they smell different. Patito smelled like four Elder's hands and a brownie. He won't be coming round here Jack. Won't come back no more, no more, no more, no more, Jack. I kinda feel bad for the poor guy but he's in a better place with all the other little ducks that died before the age of accountability.
Also, I've been learning harmonica! I'd say I'm getting pretty good and it's really fun! Plus when you have to ride the bus to main campus, walk kinda far every day, and have some free time, it's an awesome way to pass time. Thanks momma for sending me that harmonica. Even if it has been in the toy box for almost 10 years now... But it works perfectly fine and I love it. I forgot my camera today but I'll send them to my sis and maybe she can put up a few of the funny ones! Just know, the Spirit of Revelation is alive and well! I know it, I live it, I love it!

Elder Philpot

P.S. Send me DearElders fools, I'm getting bored! And give me a return address so that I can send you guys some letters in return.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

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Time Flies!

So, they say that in the MTC days are really long but the weeks are short. It's so true! We have 16-18 hour days depending on when we actually fall asleep and wake up. But that really isn't too bad because you're with your buds and having a good time learning and teaching, even if it is sitting down most of the time studying or being in a classroom. The weeks seem so short though! I think it's because of two things. First, I'm making some awesome friends and having fun (most of the time), and second, I can't even remember what happens on most days because they're long, so I have to write it down. Otherwise I have no idea what happened last week or even last night for that matter. But the Spirit is really strong here so that makes me enjoy the classes and the investigator teachings much more than I would normally.
So, a few fun stories from this week. First, the other day we were getting ready for class and lunch and I thought it would be awesome if we all tied our ties super short. So we did, and man were they short! Like, the opposite end of the tie went to my knees it was so short. Haha and then we went to lunch and everyone thought it was awesome... Except for the Manager who said," That's cute, but it's unbecoming of a missionary." We had to change it of course, and it was a real bummer. But I got a picture so everyone can see the awesome ties we had going on. Second story, I committed my first investigator to baptism! But now he's my teacher... Haha anti-climactic, I know. But now I have three new investigators. The first two are just my maestros, go figure, but the third is named Gabriel. He's awesome! Straight out of Chile and super funny. My companion met him while going to the bathroom with another Elder in my district (we do companion switches a lot for that kind of stuff) and they were supposed to go teach him together but since it was my companion and another's companion, me and my companion decided to teach him together and not the other guys. Haha but it was the best lesson we've ever given; it was about The Plan of Salvation and our Spanish was choice! Afterwards he asked us where we learned Spanish and we were like, we learned a little in high school but we've only been here for 2 weeks. He said he couldn't believe that we were so good. Gabriel had been working on English for like 21 years and still couldn't really speak it so it meant a lot to us for him to say that we were that good at Spanish. He works for the MTC so maybe he can let us in on the secret of whether every "Visitor" is a member or not. Anyways, that experience got me so pumped! Even though the MTC is fun and all, I cannot wait to get out of here and teach some real people! I've never been more happy in my life than after giving a lesson to an investigator in all Spanish. The experience is unlike any other and a mission so far has been more fun to me than most things I've done in my life. So I suggest that missions can be for everyone, because the first convert on my mission was myself. I realized so many things about my life that I consider myself way different than when I entered, and it's only been 2 WEEKS! Imagine all the good that will come from two more years. I believe with all my heart that the gospel is true. It brings happiness to even the darkest of lives. And how great shall be the joy of he that brings many souls unto God. So try to bring others to the truth that you have come to believe and I promise that you'll be more happy than ever in your life. Another thing I've come to believe: Prayer has power... not just something mystical maybe... it has real force and God cannot withhold the will of someone who prays with complete faith. I hope that everyone will Persevere to the End by strengthening their relationship with their Father in Heaven. There are people out there who haven't even received the Gospel yet and need to. Persevering to the End is easy for someone who actually knows the way... Imagine how others are faring without even know that they have a Father in Heaven who loves them. Pray for those who need it. Everyone does. Pray that I can learn Spanish so I can hit the ground running in Argentina, ready to bring them the truth. Love all of you. Prayer has power! I know it, I live it, I love it!
Elder Philpot

-Yo y mi companero like to lay down during study
-Me and my kinda short tie
-Our room with my really short tie
-All the people who wear glasses in our zone
-The last night with my bud Elder Parker

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

[Samsung Smart Camera] sent you files!

Sent from Samsung Camera.

La Primera Semana!

What a first week! First of all, when I got here, I saw a bunch of people that I knew so it was nice to see some familiar faces. I also saw a lot of scared faces but I was just stoked to be here! My companion is Elder Erickson and he's awesome! He's a jokester and we get along really well, and same with our district, so much so that sometimes it's hard to focus on the Spirit and the language. But we're starting to get that stuff down. Anyways, I got here and they sent me straight to spanish class where we speak only spanish! It wasn't too hard for me because I understand really well but it's so hard for me to remember words and how to put them into different tenses and all that crazy stuff. Later that night we went to a kind of coaching activity at the church and we taught people who were converts that were pretending to be their old selves. One girl, Hely, from Guatemala, was so sweet and sincerely looking for something to fill the void in her life. She even told us about the struggles that she has had as her daughter goes through the struggle of Cerebral Palsy. It was amazing to see how much she cared about her daughter and that she would someday find happiness in her resurrected daughter. It was an amazing first day experience that I'll never forget. It taught me that the people of South America are so ready to hear about the gospel and I'm so lucky to be the missionary that gets to take it to them! The next day, I felt a little sad and crazed because the days are so busy and I realized that I'm really doing this. But then I saw this Elder in my zone smile so sincerely at the teacher that night, and I realized that in that moment, he was completely unselfish and so happy about being on a mission. From then on, I've felt nothing but the love of the Savior and I realized the amount that He can help me, even if it only took a smile that night. Friday was my first lesson with an "investigator", Jaime, who speaks no English whatsoever. Wow, was that a learning experience. Haha I forgot everything that I was going to say and even how to say some of the pleasantries that everybody knows. I was so angry with myself. I came upon another realization! That if I wanted the Spirit to help me teach, then I needed to put in my best effort as well! So I've been trying just that for the last week! I also realized that bearing testimony of the truthfulness of the Gospel can have the most amazing impact on an investigator, even if you don't even speak the language. That was the only part of the first lesson that I am glad happened. I bore my testimony. It was simple. But the Spirit was so strong and grabbed hold of the investigator. Luckily, the words have been coming and we've taught Jaime multiple times. Tomorrows is our last day and I hope he says yes to our invitation to be baptized. If not, I don't think it's a huge deal since he's most likely an MTC worker. But I still try my hardest to teach with the Spirit and get him to keep commitments. Then, on Sunday, I got to talk with my momma and the family! It was nice to let them know that I'm doing awesome and the Spirit is basically embracing me wherever I go. It made me miss home a little, and then I got back to work so it isn't pressing my mind anymore. I love the MTC. Even though I'm on the West Campus which is just Wyview, and the food is limited, and there's 1/100 of the people, and we have to walk a lot more, and the classrooms are small, I still enjoy myself. I can't complain because I'm just happy to be serving the Lord. Missions are hard, but they are called of God and I know that I was meant to be here with these people in my life. Thank you to everyone who has helped me to get here! I know that missionary work is important in the eyes of Heavenly Father. I know it, I live it, I love it!
-Elder Philpot

Me and Elder Parker from my BYU ward!
Me and my companion in our dorm.
My full closet.
My sweet tie.
My sweet name tag and pocket.
Me studying.
Selfie with the district studying Espanol.
The Zone at the temple.
My companero and me and the temple being silly. 

Sunday, May 4, 2014


I enter the Provo Missionary Training Center come Wednesday! It's Sunday afternoon and tonight I'll be set apart as a missionary! I've looked forward to a mission my whole life... and now it's here. This is the introduction to my adventures in Argentina. This gospel is true! I know it, I live it, I love it!