El Salvador

El Salvador


Elder Garrett Markham
El Salvador San Salvador East Mission
PO Box #3362
San Salvador, El Salvador
Central America


Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Excited to watch General Conference!

So I'm sorry I'm writing a little late again. We came to write this morning but nothing was working.
We had the baptism for Alex this weekend! It was just another great baptism and he chose the Bishop to baptize him. He is super excited about the church and has sacrificed so much! I don't have tons of time this week but I hope everyone is doing well back home. I'm so excited for General Conference this weekend! I can't wait to hear what the prophets have to say to us this time. The mission has really helped me find more meaning for GC. It's my first in the field! It seems like yesterday when we were watching it in the MTC! Luckily there's another Elder from the states in my district so hopefully we can watch it in English in the office haha. But I will miss the cinnamon rolls and hot chocolate. Maybe I can find something here but the people here just eat the same sweet breads haha. I hope you guys are able to enjoy it too! I have to go but I love and miss you all!
Love Elder Markham

** General Conference is a biannual conference that is broadcast on TV that we watch the first weekends in April and October.  It is on cable channels and BYUTV.  Our church leaders speak about issues of our times and give instruction for following the Savior.  The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and other choirs perform musical numbers and it is a wonderful weekend to spend together as families!  The 5 sessions are 

Saturday 9:00 am to 11:00 Pacific time
Saturday 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm Pacific time
Saturday 5:00 pm to 7:00 pm (Priesthood session for men)

Sunday 9:00 am to 11:00 
Sunday 1:00 pm to 3:00 

Monday, March 23, 2015

"The faith of the people here really strengthen my Faith..."

Hey family!

We had our baptism for Sister Vilma this Saturday and Sunday! It was such a great experience. She was so ready to get baptized. Most of the members thought that she was already a member! The spirit was super strong and  helped me feel better to have another great baptism!  We should have another baptism for Brother Alex this Saturday and Sunday. It's amazing to see his faith and desire to start his life over. He spends all day selling stuff to make his living. He has had to start his life over with nothing. But when he gets home at night he just reads the Book of Mormon, and the other books for the classes at church. And he has been taking out his tithing to pay after his baptism! The faith of the people here really strengthen my faith. Oh...I also had to give a talk in church. The only problem was was that I lost my voice the day before and couldn't talk very well. But a few people said it was pretty good. I talked about following the prophets and general conference in a couple weeks. Which is weird because I feel like I was just watching it in Mexico! The time is going by way too fast. I love and miss you all very much!

Love Elder Markham

Elder Mansilla, Sister Vilma, and Garrett at her Baptism

One of the Lizards Garrett wants to eat.

Elder Ramirez from Mexico (one of Garrett's Zone Leaders) and Garrett

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

So Busy...But so Happy!

Hey everyone!

Sorry I'm late again. We went to play soccer on a turf field in the morning. I had fun! I had two super cool goals. I got a nice turf burn on one and the other I got with my head and it seemed to impress all the Latinos because they kept talking about it haha.

Well tomorrow marks six months and I'd say quite a bit has already changed about me. I'm getting used to the heat, I can eat raw eggs without a problem and I love cow foot soup! Haha, I think I might be a little darker. It's weird because you don't really tan here. It's just super hot and humid and after you burn, you're right back to being white again. Last night we finally got a little rain! Then there was some type of explosion outside and the power went out for about 20 seconds. But like they say here, es la vida en El Salvador! 

We are going to have a baptism this Saturday! I'm super excited! Her name is Vilma and she lives with her 25 year old son. The missionaries before have been teaching her in her friends house. I'm super excited and she just loves the church and everything about it! Then we should have at least one more next week. His name is Alex. It's kinda sad because he really doesn't have much. He lives in the back room of someones house that is about the size of my room. He sleeps on a sheet on the floor and has a little stove to cook with. I'm just very glad he is super humble and still willing to sacrifice his work time to come to church and read the Book of Mormon. He is super great! We visit a lot of families and with a new convert named Rene. I had to get the soles of my shoes resowed because they are falling apart. He was able to take them for me and a few days later he offered me his old shoes haha. I tried to offer to buy them from him because he doesn't have much even though they were only size 8 but he said no and if they don't fit I can just leave them in the house for when another missionary comes. It's amazing how nice and generous the people are here.

I love you all so much and can't wait to hear from you! Oh and guess what dad! You wouldn't believe how many times I heard George Michael this week. I think the song is called careless whispers...with the saxaphone? You'd be so proud haha

Love Elder Markham

**Note: Garrett's Mom loves Wham and George Michael...his dad does NOT!  So Garrett and Brad always loved to torment him and play Wham's Christmas song "Last Christmas" over and over and over....

Thursday, March 12, 2015

A more dangerous area to teach...but big lizards to eat! And LOTS of Pictures!

Hey Family!
So I had transfers this week. I'm now in Soyapango. My actual area is called Paleca 1. I don't have a whole lot of time, but here's a little about my area. I'm super happy because my companion is from Guatemala! They are always my favorite missionaries. So he's super cool. It's still pretty hot here but there are bigger lizards that are pretty cool to see crawling around. The people love to eat them. I'm still looking for my chance to get a big bite of one. There's a sweet lemon tree in our backyard. The only problem with this area is that we have to be in our house by 6:00 p.m.. I don't know why because this area seems to be way more calm then my last area. But if the President feels that way then I guess it's for a reason. This letter is quick so that I can send some pics. I love you and miss you all!
Love Elder Markham

This is from Garrett's first area that he was just transferred from.

Some ooey-gooey chocolate cake made for Garrett by the sweet Zepeda family.  One of his favorite desserts from home!

Garrett, Elder Custodio (trained Garrett) and Elder Golden (trained Elder Custodio)

Garrett's new companion from Guatemala Elder Mansilla

Garrett's new kitchen

Garrett's backyard lemon tree

Garrett's pila...."Yes Mom, we wash our dishes in there"

Garrett has a home gym! He's actually very excited about it since he can now do more than just pushups! I hope he doesn't get a sliver in his hiney!

Thursday, March 5, 2015

A Letter From a Local Family of El Salvador

Querida Señora Markham:
Para nosotros es un gusto atender a Elder Markham y Elder Lowry, son jóvenes buenos y educados, con ellos  hemos aprendido mucho sobre el evangelio restaurado y tenemos muchas bendiciones de Dios. Elder Markham  habla muy bonito de su familia y lo mucho que les extraña. Todos en mi casa le queremos mucho como un hermano menor y estamos pendiente de el.
Adjunto algunas fotos
Roxana Zepeda


Dear Mrs. Markham :
For us it is a pleasure to meet Elder Elder Markham and Lowry are good young and educated, they have learned much about the restored gospel and have many blessings from God. Elder Markham speaks very nice of her family and how much he misses them . Everyone in my house we love him like a younger brother and we are aware of it.
Attached are some photos
Roxana Zepeda

Garrett and his companion Elder Lowry learning how to make papusas from the Zepeda Family. He loves to eat them!

Learning how to make papusas!

Garrett and Elder Lowry

Monday, March 2, 2015

Maybe a new area? And a bit about El Salvador

Hey Family!

So everything is getting pretty hot here in El Salvador. I feel like I'm roasting...but anyway. My companion is going to train next this change so its 90% chance that I'm going to have changes. We got a call a little later that our zone was going to the temple but we weren't going to be able to go because of the meeting my companion had. But at 6 in the morning there was someone banging on our door and so we quickly ran to see who it was. Turns out it was our district leader and he said that I could go because another missionary was going to the meeting too so we were able to do interchanges and I got to go to the temple! It was a huge blessing! The El Salvador temple is beautiful! It was a great experience! So here's a couple stories to get an idea of the country here. 

1.So we went to a guys house to teach him and we knocked on his door. At first we didn't hear anything and he didn't come to the door. So we knocked again and all of a sudden we hear, "up here". I looked up and there was the little old man up in his tree picking fruit for us. Haha, he's about 50 something years old and maybe 5 feet tall. Later he came down and gave us the fruit and we had our lesson. 

2. Every once in a while we see these huge long horned bulls walking down our street with a tiny old farmer that's even older. He's probably 70 something and just carries a little stick to whip the cows every once in a while. You would love it Grandpa! ahah

3. So for the longest time there has been a huge hole in the middle of the road because the sewer lid is missing. Its super dangerous because most people have motorcycles. So after many weeks they finally fixed the problem. You would think that they would find a new lid or something....oh no...much better. They decided to plant a tree hahaha. Now theres just a giant tree randomly sticking out of the road and nobody thinks its weird or anything haha.

Well theres a little more about El Salvador. Have a great week and I love you so much! 

Love Elder Markham

"It's great to see the changes in peoples lives..."

Hey Family! 

This week was awesome! We had ten investigators at church yesterday! We have a ton that are progressing super well and only need a few more changes to be prepared for baptism. This week and the next few weeks are going to be super crazy with tons of work but I'm glad that we have all this to do! It's great to see the changes in peoples lives and see them have more desires to change. This week went by so fast! We had some more great lessons with Antonio. He's had a lot of stuff going on with his past life and the cops and stuff but he came to church again and said that he really enjoyed. He feels that he's still messing up and feels super down but we were able to comfort him and after I had talked to him for a bit and explained how these things are hard and that they happen but that we will never stop visiting him, he got super emotional and just started thanking us. He said the only thing is that he doesn't want us to stop visiting him. We said we'll always be here and he was super happy. The Zepeda family are all really worried because their 92 year old grandma that lives with them is super sick. They didn't know what would happen to her last night so we went to give her a blessing. Then we went by this morning and she said she was feeling better. It was great to be able to serve them last night. I don't know if you guys sent the 2014 family thing. I probably won't be able to know for a few more weeks because the mail is super lame but if it doesn't get here could you send it again in a bit? Thanks! I love you all! 

Love Elder Markham