El Salvador

El Salvador


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


Monday, August 31, 2015

Not enough time in a day...

Hey everyone!

It was an awesome week this week! We went to the temple Wednesday! I love the temple so much! Then we got to have a special meeting with President Nelson on Friday! He came here with a few of the 70 and they all talked about missionary work. We got to shake his hand and everything! It was cool to get to hear him and be there in the same room as he spoke. We got to really see his true personality and he is a pretty funny guy! I only got two pics of him when he was getting into the car and they didn't turn out very well but you can still see him haha.

We found a ton of new investigators again this week! Sometimes I just feel there isn't enough time to get everything done that we need to haha. And we have been receiving tons of blessings. Like one time in Olocuilta a guy and his wife rode up on their motorcycle and said, "what a miracle that we found you". Turns out the husband is a member but the wife isn't and they didn't know where the church is. Also the wife is really interested! A ton of the people we are finding are all reading the Book of Mormon and say they love it, but they just don't come to church haha. That's the only problem for right now. Mainly because our area is HUGE! 

Today we went to Olocuilta to eat some pupusas and I got a pupusa loca with a ton of stuff in it! AWESOME! I miss and love you all tons!

Love Elder Markham

**President Nelson is one of our church's apostles from Salt Lake City.  The 70 (or Seventy) is a group of priesthood that oversees the areas that they have been assigned to.  They look after the people in that area and make sure the church and it's members are taken care of.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Diligence and obedience is the key to receive God's help...

Hey Everyone!!!

Well good news and bad news. The bad news is that the new Elder I was going to train had to go back to the United States for something. The good news is that I'm still training but I'm finishing the training of an Elder. His name is Elder Alvarez from Costa Rica. This week was soo awesome! We found a ton of great new investigators that want to be baptized. We received so many miracles in the streets of people just coming up to us and saying, hey when you get the chance you need to visit my son and his wife that live over there. Then when we would go by they are all just super positive. The spirit has really been helping us through these past few days and I know that it's through obedience and diligence in the work. Like it says in Doctrine and Covenants 84:99 and 100 we aren't worthy to be in the presence of God if we aren't diligent. That scripture has really helped me to work harder and be better. I love seeing the people having a desire to change and leave the worldly things behind. The people here really have that desire but sometimes its hard for them to act and really change. But That's why we are here and I love this chance that I have to help them. I want to send some pics so I don't have too much time. I love and miss you all!!!!

Love Elder Markham

**here's a kinda funny story for the week. 

The other day we were looking for a family that we talked to in the street and said we could come by. My area is huge and there's jungle areas that I've never been and the houses are spread out and literally made of bamboo and mud so there aren't any numbers or anything. So we just got an idea that this guys house is down this one dirt road past the school next to the store. Here in El Salvador every other house is a store and they are always very small. But anyways, we started down this one street and we were walking for a few minutes and I thought maybe we passed it. There aren't many people in the street but when we asked them they just said, "oh yeah, the school is just down there". So we kept going. Everyone told us, just down there....well after walking for about 30 minutes in the jungle on a dirt path we finally found the house because the daughter was outside waiting for us haha. So she helped us. It's also a good thing that they are super humble because we are going back tomorrow!

Here are a few pictures from Garrett's new area in Santiago El Salvador!

Santiago with the Lake in the Background

Elder Flores, Orlando with his grandchildren and Garrett

It feels good to hold a real football after one whole year!

The Lake.  You can see the two volcanoes from his first area in Alta vista.  He has traveled around the lake in all of his areas.  He has to tract through these jungles to find his investigators that want to know about the Gospel.  He loves it!!

Monday, August 17, 2015

Training again....and getting lost in the Jungle!

Hey everyone!

Well guess what! I'm training again this change! Except I'll be training an Elder straight off the plane haha. I got the phone call on my birthday at about 11:00 pm when we were already sleeping so it was a pretty good way to end it! My birthday was awesome! We did some service in the morning then went to Olocuilta to eat the best pupusas ever! And Sister Vasquez called me to wish me a happy birthday. It was awesome!

Yesterday we had quite the time. We went looking for a family that hasn't gone to church for a while. But we took a wrong turn in the jungle and got a little lost. Let's just say there were no houses...just jungle. And yes it was very hot and humid and going there was down hill. But when we had to go back it was all uphill! Those little football workouts I did in the summer were easy. I thought we'd never make it out alive haha. But it was cool because after we found the family and shared a lesson, about 4 or 5 of them asked us for blessings. It was a great day. We should be baptising Orlando pretty soon because we are putting together a thing to sell some stuff with the sisters in the ward so we can get some money. Also, some other people are donating. It's going to be awesome to finally help him! Well I have to go but I love and miss you all!

Love Elder Markham

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Finding less active members and playing American FOOTBALL!

Hey family!

Well...it's official! I will never be wearing my suit again! They told us this week that suits are no more ahah. That kinda stinks though because it's already pretty used with a little hole in one sleeve. But anyway, this week was another week of entering in at 7:00 pm so we didn't have a ton of lessons. But on Saturday we did go to a lesson with a member to teach a less active sister. Then afterwards I asked him if he knew any members that lived close by. He took us to two different members houses and showed us about 3 more! It was awesome because we had been looking for the less actives for a while but the directions here are terrible! So it was impossible with out the members help. The only thing is that they weren't in our area haha. But the families were very happy that we came by. I don't have a whole lot of time today but I can't wait to read your emails! Oh! and today I brought my football to play with for p-day. It's AWESOME! I started playing catch with a few Americans then all of a sudden all the Latinos wanted to play. It quickly just turned into them running around in circles throwing it to each other so I just watched and talked to an Elder from the states haha. I love and miss you all!

Love Elder Markham

** A couple months ago the headquarters in Salt Lake City for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints came out with a new policy that many of the missions through out the world would not require their missionaries to take or wear full suits because of their hot and humid climates.  El Salvador was one of those missions.  This is also to relieve some of the financial burdens on families to send their missionaries out in the field.

Garrett is required to be in his apartment at 7:00 pm for safety reasons as the gang violence is getting worse in San Salvador.  We appreciate your prayers for his safety.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Lots of walking and extra time for Scripture study

Hey Everyone!
This week was a crazy week. So a few things happened last Monday just as we finished writing and we had to buy our stuff and head home because they shut down all the buses. Luckily we got the last one going to our house. We had to be in the house at 7 every day so that took a little time out of our schedule and we didn't have any buses until Friday! Tuesday and Wednesday we had to walk all the way to San Marcos where the church is. It's almost 4 miles away and took 1 hour and 15 minutes. It was quite the walk. But now everything is back to normal but our branch president still wants us in at 7:00 pm. With the extra time in the night I've really been able to do a lot more reading in the scriptures. I read Genesis this week and I have really developed a love for the scriptures. I can feel the Spirit so strong as I read the scriptures, there's no way they can't be true. I'm so grateful for what a huge blessing they are and for how much they have changed me here in the mission. I know that as long as we read the scriptures we will never be lost. I hope all is going well at home. I can't wait to see what's been going on! I love and miss you all!
Love Elder Markham

** Mom's note

Garrett doesn't share specifics about why some things happen for good reason...but because of the internet, I can find things out that maybe I don't want to know anyway!!  But I must trust in the Lord that He will keep my boy safe and pray every day that he will be watched over.  The Church also does whatever it can to keep the missionaries safe.  And it sounds like the gangs are getting worse in El Salvador, calling for Garrett to be inside his apartment earlier for safety reasons.  Here is what I found: