El Salvador

El Salvador


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


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Another Baptism...but more importantly Garrett's testimony of why he is there. And PICTURES!

Hey family!

I hope you all got that picture! Yep we had a baptism this Saturday for Salvador Hernandez. He is super great! This area hasn't had a baptism for about a year until now. Salvador was being taught for 3 changes before we finally baptized him. That's about 18 weeks haha. When I got to the area he had almost all the lessons, he just had tons of questions and was scared to be baptized. Me and my companion had been teaching him and trying to help him these past 6 weeks. We had that meeting with our mission President a little bit ago and received some great revelations for our area. We went to his house a little after and told him that we were just going to share a quick lesson with him that day then after the lesson we did a direct invitation to be baptized the following Saturday and he accepted and was baptized! It was super great to hear his story because I found out that the Lord had been preparing him for years!!!! When he was 18 his friend, who was a girl, was taking the lessons and since there wasn't a man he was just there so that they could have a man over 18 years old for the lesson. But he never really got into it too much until someone gave him a Book of Mormon a little bit ago. It was awesome! He asked me to baptize him and confirm him. It was a really great experience. There isn't much going on except we've finished another change. There's some crazy huge ants outside that when they are walking around with their wings out, they look like Dragons!!! They only come out this time of year and are super scary haha. There was also this cute little girl with frozen pajamas at one of our lessons. I showed her the picture of Mayli and Elena (Garrett's nieces) and said that it was little Elsa and Ana. She took it and was amazed haha. Well I'm excited to hear from all of you this week. I love you all!

Love Elder Markham

** Momma's Note:

I shared the news and story with Garrett about the miracle we witnessed as a family this past week in seeing his cousin get hit by a car, and go from life support to having the Dr.'s expect a full recovery although it will be a very long and painful one.  I told Garrett up front that his cousin would be ok, and then shared the details.  He said it was so much different getting the news like that so far from home, and wishes the best for his cousin as he will now join in our prayers for his full recovery, and also giving thanks for the miracle that he survived.

Garrett and I have an opportunity to exchange some more personal messages through email.  I keep them close to my heart and they truly make my whole Monday the best day of the week!  But I would like to share one of them that he sent this past Monday.  He shares his testimony of what he is truly learning as a missionary for our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ...and I wanted to share it with those who read his blog.  I am so proud of his service!

Thanks, I hope we can go again soon! It's such a great time at the temple! I love this work mom. I have learned so much and grown and changed. I look back and realize all the changes in my life before my mission that I should have done. But I know that this is one of the reasons I am here for two years. To convert myself. I love you so much mom. And even though we walk up hills for 4 hours straight sometimes, there is no other place I'd rather be. You guys are what keep me going and the few people here that we teach. I have to go but I love you so much!

Love Elder Markham

Garrett and his companion Elder Aranda at the baptism of Salvador Hernandez

Garrett at the El Salvador Temple...where he finds great peace

The El Salvador Temple
Huge "creepy ant things that look like Dragons!"

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

One of the Best Weeks in a Long Time!

Hello everyone!

This week was one of the best weeks in a long time! First, on Tuesday, we went to the Temple! We got there super early and there were a few kids that had brought family names to do the baptisms for and also confirmations. But for some reason there weren't any adults to help with the priesthood parts so I got to help out! I did a bunch of confirmations and it was just a great experience. Then we did our regular session. Then on Wednesday we had a leader meeting with President and he taught us a bunch of stuff. The thing I liked most was when he talked about Genesis chapter 49 when Jacob blesses his sons. And also Ezekiel about the sticks of Joseph and Judah. He taught us how we relate this to the Book of Mormon and a bunch of other things. It's a bit extensive but maybe you guys can do a little bit more research haha. Then this Sunday we had our stake conference! It was awesome because I saw everyone from Alta Vista! So the Zepeda sisters say I'm changing in many ways. They said my Spanish is great, I'm losing weight and getting taller....I don't think I'm losing weight or getting taller haha. Then they gave me another huge bag of sweet bread....how was it possible when I saw them walk in the building without anything? I'm not really sure....maybe they just made it in the back of the gym or something. Then I saw Antonio. He was the 19 year old who had a few problems with drugs and his family and was very sad. But now he is doing great and he freaked out when he saw me haha. He was soooo happy and I was sooo happy too. Then I met up with Orlando. He's getting married and baptized this Saturday! It's insane! Everyone is doing great there. I hope everyone at home is doing great. I love and miss you all!

Love Elder Markham

Saturday, May 16, 2015

Post Mother's Day visit

Hey everyone

It was so great to see and talk to you all. I'm so thankful for all your love and support and to hear that everything is going well for everyone. 

Like I said this next week we are going to have stake conference again so it's going to be super awesome to see my old ward. I'm pretty sure that the Zepeda family will bring me a bunch of bread to the conference to give to me haha. This week will be pretty busy and fun. Tomorrow we are going to the temple, and Wednesday there's a meeting with the president that all the elders have to go to. We'll have to see how that goes. Today there really isn't much of a plan since the last few p-days were crazy and no one had time to buy anything or stuff like that. So were just going to go eat pupusas after this and hangout haha. I'm always busy with a bunch of stuff. We don't have a lot of people to teach unfortunately because the missionary before me had been teaching the lessons in English and the people just wanted the lessons to learn more English. So when we started teaching in Spanish a few got angry and didn't want us to do that haha. Well they weren't progressing at all so we had to look for other families and people to teach. It was kinda sad. It's crazy to think that this change only has two weeks left. The changes are getting faster. I just hope it doesn't go by too fast because then I'll feel like I didn't get enough time haha. Not much to say this week since we talked last night but it was a great blessing to see and hear from everyone. I love you all.

Love Elder Markham

Area that Garrett visited last week

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

A difficult week...but still looking for the positive!

Hey family! I don't have too much time so ill have to be short! But this Sunday we'll be talking on skype at 4:00 pm my time. I don't know what time it is there so you'll have to check.

This week was super hard. We had many hard days looking for people to teach and were in the streets almost all day, But I decided to pray and ask for direction and a miracle. We went to this persons house for the first time after talking to them in the street. And they were there with almost their whole family! After talking to them the dad said he was very excited to have us come by and teach but only Saturdays. His daughter, who is about 20 something, said that they had stopped going to their old church since their grandma had died and ever since her sister had her baby they have been looking for a church for her son! The wife wasn't too thrilled but it was such a help to find a family that is looking for the true church! Then Saturday I was walking down the street again and we couldn't find anyone to teach at all because everyone was watching a boxing match. We had about 30 minutes before we had to be inside and it was another super long hard day. I knew we needed to visit one more family so I felt like walking down one path that we haven't walked down much. I said another prayer and then I saw a guy walking around through the window. We went up to his house and he was super friendly! I said that we were there to serve him that night and he quickly had us come in. Earlier that day his wife had messed up her hand really really bad at work and was asking that we offer a pray for them. After the prayer we set another visit for tonight and the man said he knew that we had been sent from God to help him. I know that if we pray with faith God will always be there to help us. I miss you all and can't wait to talk to you!

Love Elder Markham

Here is a place they visited on their preparation day.  Garrett says he can see all three areas he has been in from this look out point...and yes, his hair was cut way too short.  His mom will be glad when it grows out a bit.

Garrett's Companion Elder Aranda

Elder Hale from Galdstone High School

A really old cool water pump they found in the middle of the jungle

Sunday, May 3, 2015

Cannibal chickens....


We had a crazy week these last few days. We finally figured out what was wrong with our water and we were able to fix it. We went about a week or so without water. I've never been so happy to shower! We were going to have a few baptisms this week but the two cousins named Salvador and Francisco had too many questions and didn't feel ready so we extended the date. Then the other one is just waiting for his marriage papers to get married then he can be baptized. There's also another investigator that is preparing super well for his date in a couple more weeks! We are always super busy working all day. And I remembered the funny story from last week! We had a service project at this one place to clean some stuff up....afterwards they gave us food to eat. It was great! We had rice chicken and tortillas. We were all eating our food and then all the chickens that this lady had all came to see if they would be able to get a snack. I was sitting down in my chair while about five chickens were staring me in the eyes just like what Snickers (our dog) does. Then one of them got brave and attacked me and took my chicken from me! When it hit the ground all the chickens started to eat it and go nuts! Cannibal chickens are nasty. This place is crazy. 

I love and miss you all! I hope you're all doing great!

Love Elder Markham