Monday, December 28, 2015

I’m Dreaming of a White Christmas.


While seeing some snow covered mountains would have been nice, I found myself wishing a lot harder to see the brilliant white of a baptismal robe this Christmas!!! We had been working a lot with Luis lately, and were hoping that everything would go well with his baptism the 19th.

It was really miraculous to see how much of a change could take place in his life in such a short time. His habits, thoughts, and even personality have changed (not like he wasn't great he's just better).

We had a really cool experience with him just before his baptism...

He was nervous, as most people are, and he told us that he wasn't sure about the whole baptism thing....He told us he wasn't ready to forgive some people, and that repentance was a little too difficult for him to handle. After a few questions he told us his problem,

When he was very young, Luis had been abandoned by his parents....Just left on his Aunt's doorstep. All his life he had harbored a great animosity towards them, blaming them for all the resultant problems and inconveniences in his life. He had always felt unloved as a child. He said it was something he had taken very personally and internalized. His Mother lived not too far away.....and every time she tried to visit to explain her actions, he wouldn't hear it.

He would never forgive his parents.  EVER.

My companion used an arsenal of scriptures, talks, exhortations....but they fell on deaf ears....We began to worry a bit....and then the spirit whispered "You were in a similar position....the gospel helped"....

How had I forgotten? How had that not struck a chord before?

I immediately told Luis that I knew he could forgive. I told him that I was adopted, but due to the love my parents had shown me, and to the gospel of Jesus Christ that I had in my life.....I had never once harbored those feelings with which he was so familiar....

"You don't hate your birth-parents for what they did"? He asked.

"On the contrary" I said.

"I owe them a lot.....Thanks to one good decision they made, I have parents who love me, who provided for me. I have a Mom and Dad, who gave me the life I otherwise wouldn't have had"...

"Think about it Luis.....your mother was young when she had you....she wasn't married I bet....she couldn't have provided for you....She did the best she could. She knew your Aunt loved you and so she left you with her"......

Luis thought for a long moment...........He looked at me and said

"Wow.....I never looked at it that way......I.....I need to call her".

I was happier for him than I think I have been for anyone else in a long....long time.

That was truly a beautiful moment.

So.....I hope that all of you know that I have never once felt out of place in my family. I know that we were sealed together in a House of The Lord, and that nothing can ever sever that bond. I knew that growing up. That's a knowledge I've had in my heart since I was 8 years old. I've doubted in a lot of things over the years, but I have never, ever doubted in that knowledge.

......So Luis got baptized and it was great.

Hahahahaha, Christmas Eve we got to stay up until 12:30 and watch the fireworks. It was amazing. It's better than any fireworks show in the US. The Entire city of Lima (like 8 million people) all shoot fireworks into the air at midnight. For like a solid 30 minutes there's fireworks in every direction......I'll miss that a lot.....

But New Year is even better!!! They burn effigies in the street!!! It's so cool!!!!

So....that's what we've got to look forward to next week!!!!

Love you guys!!!!!!!

Elder Winn
Rooftop Christmas Eve 2015

Monday, December 21, 2015

December 21, 2015


I should be calling around 10-12 AM in Peruvian time....I think I'm 2 hours ahead so 8-10 there.....sorry....Elder Diaz has some problems with communicating the hour to his it's not that sure....I'll see if I can't call the day before or something.....

I got to go!!! I'll share some cool experiences next week.....and on skype!!! I love you guys!!!!

Love you!!!!


Monday, December 14, 2015


So my companion is saying goodbye to his other sectors. So I got jipped on time. So rapid fire....

-I'll be training this change. I don't know who my companion will be but he will be new! So the only companions of mine still in the mission will be him and my other "son", Elder Slade.

I'm doing well!!! Luis will get baptized this Saturday!!!!

.....I've got a great story for skype!!!!! I'll have mom write it up at Christmas!!!

I don't know what else.....I may be able to write a bit tomorrow.

I love you all!!! I'm doing great!!! Callao is exciting!!! I'll make up for today next week!!!! Love you guys!!!!

Tuesday, December 8, 2015


Well.....There's really not a whole lot to say this week....other than:


*Cheers erupt from readers around the world*

Hahahaha that's right!!! We've met a great young man named Luis.

He was a contact we made just walking by last week, we told him we were missionaries, he told us to come in, we had a nice heated discussion with the pastor who was apparently using his house as a chapel (although not anymore....oddly enough), and arranged for a meeting later in the week.

He ended up coming to church, and staying for all 3 hours (a rare feat). Then he came back this week and did it again (an even rarer feat), then he went on visits with us to less active members (so rare of a feat, that I'm pretty sure it's never happened to me before).

Anyway, we've got a pretty rock solid baptismal goal with him for the 26th.

In other news I'll be making my own burrito for Christmas, which just goes to show how awesome President and Sister Larson are. We'll be filling out an online form, and then Christmas each and every missionary will receive their own custom burrito......ya that I'm describing it to an entirely American audience I sense that it's really not all that whimsical.....but trust me, if you were here, it'd be whimsical alright.

And that's about all that I can think of right now!!!

Things are going a lot better this week! I'll make sure to keep you guys updated!!!

Much love,   Elder Winn

P.S. Looks like I've got a bit more time. Random Fact: Calamari is way cheap here and is by far my new favorite meal; $1.66 with rice, and a side of Yucca, by far the best thing ever.