Monday, September 26, 2016

P-Day #8 - Life Is About The Choices You Make....Poutine....And Buying a Heavy Coat!

Hey Mom and Dad,

You are probably still sleeping but I am awake.
Elder Perry On Top of the World in the Canada Toronto Mission in Quebec, Canada

This week has been good, we still don't know where I am going, the word is just stand by and wait for the Val-d’Or apartment thing to sort itself out. I want to know because I want to get a rhythm down and not wonder where I will be for the next year. The French Elders don't get transferred very often because there are so few. We are getting a new French Elder this week and we have all been wondering how the companionship's are going to be sorted out.

Elder Carman (Left) and Elder Feth (Right) Enjoying some Poutine for a Lunch Break.
They are my companions, They ROCK!

The Elders here are treating me good. We laugh and joke around with each other and we do the work. They say when you are up north too long you become weird and not the average missionary. This is proving to be true but I really wouldn't want average because then life would just be boring. We met a man who said his name was Bruce Lee. (he was definitely not). He also told us that he needed to go and fly away. I guess he was going to meet with Superman. He was a little high on something but it gave us a good laugh. We went back later when we thought he would be off the high but he opened the door and the smell of pot filled the hallway. He is probably not going to be taught right now.

I did buy a heavy coat and it’s a nice Colombia and well made. We looked around for good deals but they didn't have anything in my size that was on sale. The Elders helped me look and I tried to communicate the best I could with the lady who was helping with the coat. She said it could handle -40 easy so I said “OK”.

We helped a lady move some furniture in her basement this week. Her basement was really dusty and cat hair was all over everything. Even with my allergy meds, I still had an allergy flare up. We got home after and I got in the shower and recovered for the rest of the night.

Elder Perry at the Largest Gold Mine in Canada

We went to the largest mine in Canada. It's just outside of Val-d'Or. It produces about 140,000 ounces of gold every quarter. Now, that's a "Gold Rush"!

Poutine is Fries covered with Brown Gravy and some Cheese Curds

I got to try talking to people by myself and I think that it went well, all things considered. I had the famed poutine and it was ok. I think it would have been better with country style gravy but it was lunch that day so, it was awesome. We taught the lady who owns the restaurant and she gave it to us for free. She was so nice.

I got to use the self-checkout at Walmart in French and I thought it was the coolest thing. Things up here are all French and it is full immersion. I like it because I am getting better at responding to questions and understanding what people are saying.

I helped mow a lady’s lawn today. Thousands of miles away and I am still mowing lawns like at home. She had a John Deere mower like our neighbor Linn Buckner’s at home in Vernonia, which was nice. I met a guy who reminded me of Linn. He lived by himself with his dog and wore jeans and an old hickory shirt. Every time we go over to those two people it is like I am walking next door and saying hi to our neighbor and asking how he is doing. It feels like home and I love it. Tell Linn “Hello” from me!

All the early mornings, all the miles spent walking up and down streets, all the mistakes in language, are all worth it. I am so grateful to be here. We had church yesterday and it was completely in French. I was able to bear my testimony and I think it went well. The people were smiling. I don't know if they liked what I said or if they were laughing in their minds because I was probably making a bunch of mistakes. Either way it went well.
We had some new investigators come to church after just one street contact, which I think is awesome.

The wind is blowing today which I think is cool because it reminds me of when grandpa and I went on our last fishing trip and our hands got numb. The wind is like that but I still like it here. Most of the time the temp is 10 degrees Celsius or 50 degrees Fahrenheit, but it will start to drop soon.

I do read your emails but the only time I can read them is on p-days because we don't have computers anywhere else. We stayed with the Timiskaming Elders last night so we could have an early start.

Please share my love with Megan, Grandpa and Grandma and share this email  

It’s good to know that things are going well with the cars.

One thing I have learned and have been asked about here in the mission field by our church leaders, is that if we want our young men and women to serve in the mission field and stay close to the gospel, “What should they be doing?”  I told them, “They should all do the Missionary Challenge ” like we did in the YSA where they have to follow mission rules. Also coordinate with the missionary’s and have them go on splits with the missionaries. That has really prepared me for a mission and I am so thankful I had the opportunity to do the challenge before I came out here.That really prepared me for a mission. 

How are the Shay Boy’s doing? Have they got baptized yet? Tell Johnathan Levenseller to keep up the good work and give him my email.  I’d love to hear from him. My Email is

Super Elder Perry with his Companions on P-Day
in the Meetinghouse Computer Center

One thing that I have learned is that life is about the choices you make! That really decides who you really are. I have learned that things that mattered to me before really don't matter. My goals have changed in life. I am not really sure what I would like to do with my life now. My focus has gone from career goals and living for my cares, to family and how I can become a good husband, father and man. Missions really shape who you are and who you become. I think I am becoming better that I ever would have, if I had not gone on a mission. Encourage the young men, please focus on the church because as we see in the scriptures, those who focus on the world, will eventually find out that true happiness is found in the safety and comfort of Jesus Christ and that the world will not give eternal happiness.

I love you and pray for you every night. Stay strong and in the words of 17 Miracles "It will all be worth it".

I love you and will write next week. 

With Great Love,       
Elder Perry

Canada Toronto Mission  

Monday, September 19, 2016

P-Day #7 - Where is Elder Perry & Bonus Letter Home !!!

Hi Mom and Dad, 

Just doing p-day emails in Timiskaming. We have an hour and a half back to the apartment in Rouyn-Noranda. I feel like in the army where I get put in one place for a little bit but not long enough to make it worth my while to unpack.

Ya’ I thought you guys would like to see the awesome views I am seeing.

I am doing great and helping the elders going home apply for college and other things because I have done it before.

We stayed overnight at the missionary’s house here in Timiskaming because it is just more economical with driving. We will be driving to Rouyn-Noranda today, probably after we leave here.

President Shields doesn't know where he is going to put me. I am just staying in Rouyn-Noranda for a week and then he will hopefully put me somewhere permanent.

I will get my winter clothing when I have something permanent but until then I just don't know. A lot of things are up in the air right now.

They just split the branches and we are having a branch in Val-d’Or. In our stake boundaries, they are the size of Utah, Nevada and Wyoming combined and a little left over. It’s huge.
Elder Perry, Lookin' Sharp!

I am not with Elder Thompson anymore. He stayed in Sudbury with my first trainer Elder “T” (we call him that because we can't say his last name).

My companions are Elder Feth & Elder Carman. They are going to be my new trainers for a week…then I’m not sure. They go home in December, so they have to train kind of quick. They are nice and we laugh and joke around a lot too. They are my kind of people. 

We just got done eating at Pizza Hut because we don't have much food at the apartment. Pizza Hut had a buffet, so we ate enough to last a week.

I have not had poutine yet, but I hear that Quebec has the best poutine. i still have money from the mission to use. I have not spent enough time in one place to be fed by the members. I here that some members feed you but mostly you cook for yourself. 

The elders say that they stay up in their areas for almost a solid year because we don't have that many French speakers. My health is good and we do exercise in the morning. I feel good and I feel I have more energy in the day. Getting up still has not gotten easier though.

We are driving a Chevy Cruz now the Nissan rogue is back in Sudbury with the other elders.

They have a lot of lakes here that look like good spots to go fly-fishing. Maybe we will have to take a trip or something and come back after my mission.

I better go because another elder has to use this computer also.

Know that I love you and will email you both as soon as I can. I have to say that because I don't know the next time I will be able to email you. Everything is uncertain up here for now. I eat and sleep when I can as well. Just like the military. Sleep and eat when you can because you don't know when you will be able too again.

I still would not trade being a Missionary for anything, even the lack of sleep is worth it!

Maybe I will see some Ice Road Truckers. They are more west but we are on the east edge of our mission and even President Shields has never been this far north. That I think is cool, yep! Love you both and will talk to you later.

Mom, in the words of the stripling warriors, our mothers knew it :) !!!
Dad, Your NCIS buddy,

Elder Jacob Perry
Canada Toronto Mission
Somewhere Far Up North…

Sunday, September 18, 2016

P-Day #7 - Kind-of...Flying to Canada, Customs, Night at Mission President's and On To My New Area... Destination....Unknown!!!

Elder Thompson and Elder Perry at the Provo, UT MTC

Hey Mom and Dad,

It’s your long lost son, ha-ha. I am doing well and my p-day is on Monday, but I'm e-mailing you on Sunday. I'll explain why later...
Elder Perry and his District at the Provo, UT MTC
Elder Jacobson(Left), Sister Allen, Elder Sorenson, Sister Huntsman, Elder Thompson, Elder Perry,
Sister Jones , Sister Goold and being held by Elder Pistole is 

Elder Amison

Elder Perry and Elder Thompson flying to Toronto, Canada

Since I talked to you last, I have flown to the Toronto, Canada airport and gone through customs. That was fun and I don't really want to do that again.

Mission President and Sister Shields 
with Elder Perry
Canada Toronto Mission
We stayed at the mission home for a night. President and Sister Shields are really nice and they even made us grilled hamburgers for the night we stayed with them. We got to go street contacting with the assistants to the president. We talked to a lot of people and even got some potential investigators out of it. It was fun just talking to new people and seeing their reaction to random strangers talking about Jesus Christ. The city was big and I knew I wasn't in Oregon anymore. The city is about the size of 3 Portland’s.

2016 Nissan Rogue, Our Mission Transportation
We stayed the night and then traveled all the way to Sudbury, Ontario which is "very north". It took a full day to travel but I felt like I was going home because the drive between Hillsboro and Vernonia is very similar. City followed by open space and then trees. We got to Sudbury at the home they called the Ice Castle. It is a small town, a little bigger than Vernonia. We got a brand new 2016 Nissan Rouge to drive around and me and Elder Thompson are certified drivers. The mission president said that most of our mission will be the north and that we are going even farther north.

In Sudbury, we met a lady who when we knocked on the door. She said she wasn't religious, cussed at the door then opened the door. She thought we were Jehovah’s Witnesses and we then explained that we were Mormons and LDS members. She said she wasn't interested but her four-year-old asked who God was and where he lived and she couldn't tell him. She said that we could come back and teach her son and her about God and she said that she would come to church. We didn't see her at church today so I don't know how that is going to work. 

Elder Thompson (Center) and my
other apartment Companions
The Elders here are awesome. I had a companion trainer named Elder “T” because we couldn't pronounce his last name. He was Tahitian. President Shields doesn't know what he wants to do with us yet. They are opening a new branch in Val-d’Or and so either Elder Thompson is going to Val-d’Or and I’m going to Rouyn-Noranda or the other way around.

We had stake conference and the Elders were asked to sing in the choir and with only two practices we sang “O' My Father”. People said we did really good and I believe them. We did alright. I have met so many new people and have gotten a few potential investigators when I have asked them.

My Current Mission Home in
Timiskaming, Quebec
I am now in Timiskaming because in Rouyn-Noranda, we don't have any computers right now so we drive to here to use the internet. Mail to the mission office will get here whenever they run it up here or when we have zone conference, which could take months. Tomorrow is p-day and we will be going to Rouyn-Noranda. I will be staying for another week and then president will see if the apartment is ready in Val-d’Or, Quebec.

The lake is in Timiskaming and I liked the view. All the elders here are awesome and there is no place I would rather be.  I have lost 20 pounds and I feel that I'll keep losing some weight. It’s mostly the walking, I guess. 

Elder Perry in his "Selfie" and Lake Temagami
I am doing great and am happy. The change is getting better and I am getting used to it. I am now with new trainers in a tri-companion ship and basically we are rotating out with them because they are going home in December. I think it is funny when people think that we are Jehovah’s Witnesses and then ask us questions that Mormons know but Jehovah’s Witnesses don't know. We laugh and joke with one another about the day and then plan for the next day. I write in my journal every night and then our TV is watching the youth videos on DVD and different Mormon Messages. We still can watch TV alright.

My French is getting better and I have been able to have a basic conversation and understand what native French speakers are saying. The members here are great and the stake conference was about the size of our branch in Vernonia. I felt like I was home. It was nice. I might email tomorrow but I’m not sure.

I love you and miss you. I will email you later. Also, share this with Megan, Grandma and Grandpa because the mission field is very busy.

Love You,
Elder Perry

Canada Toronto Mission  

Monday, September 12, 2016

P-Day #6 - Last P-Day at the MTC, Final Training and Flight Prep....

Elder Jacob Perry, Canada Toronto Mission

Hi Mom and Dad,
I have been able to teach lessons this week by myself and learn just how inexperienced I am at French. Elder Thompson and I spent some extra hours training in French this week because we want to be ready for the field!
What do we do in our spare time? Most of that time was sent just talking with the elders and singing songs that we remember from before our missions. We think that we are not actually that bad, but we won't sing in front of the entire MTC. The rest of my day consist of eating dinner and then having three hours of language class because it’s on the schedule and we need the practice. We are doing Brother Adams’ Mental Training Class tomorrow and he seems like he will teach it right. I am looking forward to it. We had Field Orientation Training yesterday where they show you kind of how the field will work and ideas of how to enhance the missionary work in your area.

Elders in My District at the MTC....
Going for "The Bad Look"

Just in case, let Grandma and Grandpa know that I am getting their letters and I will write when I can. These last few weeks have been very busy and I have not had time to write a handwritten letter for them. I will email them when I can. Express how sorry I am and I will express that sorrow when I email them.

My mental health is good! I am a little sad leaving my current MTC Frenchies District and because of the change, but I will improvise, adapt and overcome. (Heartbreak Ridge quote). I will be OK and all is well.  

We Want YOU to take the Missionary Discussions!

D. Todd Christofferson came and spoke to us about missionary work. I also saw Valyn Bayle who sings “My Kindness Shall Not Depart from Thee” in Ephraim’s Rescue at the temple today. There has been so many cool people I have come in contact with the people here are the best of the best. I am so glad I got the chance to leave Vernonia and have the opportunity to serve in Canada.

Elder Perry and Elder Thompson, Companions in the Computer Resource Center at the MTC

I have pretty much packed up my stuff and only have the essentials out of my suit case. I am nervous, but I know with the Lord, I can do all things! He doesn't set us up to fail. Maybe be tested, but not fail. We fly out Monday Morning for Toronto about 10am and arrive there a little after 3pm. Then intake into the Mission Home.

Well, Gotta run. Know that I love you and pray for you each night!
Elder Perry
Canada Toronto Mission

Saturday, September 3, 2016

P-Day #5 Sinus Infection, They call me "Sunshine" and Skype-ing to France

First of all, I am doing good, but I have been sick for the past week with a minor sinus infection. The doc gave me some meds and I’m feeling better, but I still have a cough. It was weird as we walked down to the pharmacy down the street. We actually saw people that didn't have name tags on and we were in the real world. I was just in awe...very wierd!

I received the letters from “". I especially loved the letter from Benson! :) I did receive your box with all the treats and stuff. I haven't eaten them yet because I am trying to eat in moderation and sharing with my district. The problem is that everyone’s parents send food and we are trying to be healthy for the field, so that when we get there, we can eat the food and not feel guilty about gaining weight!  

We are down to the final ten days. The language is coming very well. I am able to teach basic doctrine and I’m able to understand our investigators needs and concerns. I am also able to introduce myself and my companion. I can explain about Joseph Smith and how he was used to help reestablish the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We had Skype TRC, which is where we teach real members from the other side of the world. We taught a lady and her mom in France. We were able to share our testimonies about the scriptures and how they act as guidance for our lives. We have more Skype TRC lessons this week and I’m looking forward to them. I hope the connection is good because it’s hard to hear sometimes. 
A couple of people in our district went into an empty class room, took the paintings, then put them in our classroom. We had to put them back. But for a little while, we had them and our class room looked like we had a spiritual art gallery.

Joseph Smith and Elder Perry

Joseph Smith and Elder Thompson

We found a bust of Joseph Smith and took some pictures with the first prophet.

Most of my time is just studying and practicing my French. I will be sad to leave my district. They will all be in France and the only person that is coming with me is my current companion Elder Thompson. He’s a fantastic companion!  Unfortunately, he will get a new companion after we arrive in Canada. I received my flight plan for going to Toronto. I’m on a one-way flight and will land at 3:18 local time. Elder Thompson and I will be companions until we have transfers after we get to the Mission Home.

We had to help the Sister Missionaries move buildings because they have bats in their building and if you were bitten you would have to get rabies shots and stay for an extra two weeks. They had elevators and a lobby in their building. They looked like they were staying in a hotel. All The Elders scurried to them and carried the luggage up the stairs for the sisters in the new building. When we were carrying the bags for the sisters, there was a lot of eager Elders trying to impress the Sisters with their strength.  

I am comfortable that The Lord will help me in all things. Before I forget, we went to the temple today and as we were in the cafeteria, a man came in with his wife and payed for all the missionaries that were there. He was so nice and I have never had something like that happen to me. He only asked that we pray for his daughter who is at a competition for Volleyball. He was very nice and I didn’t realize fully how much people appreciate missionaries
I feel that I am ready for the field but then I try and teach and realize how hard this is going to be. 

Elder Symes and Elder Perry

We said good bye to the Elder Symes and the rest of the missionaries that were going to Montreal. I woke up at three in the morning and me and another elder decided that we would just do random dancing to break the sadness as they left. We had fun and the missionaries on the bus just smiled and laughed. I’m glad I was able to brighten their day.

We saw the movie Legacy and I thought it was pretty good. It was funny to see one part where two men do a log sawing competition to see who would dance with a girl first.

The Elders in the district wanted to know what the sisters thought about us, so they had them come up with words to describe us. Apparently mine is “Sunshine”!  Like from Remember the Titans and because I am always happy with whatever is going on. It just made me laugh. 

Elder Hennessey (T. Grosnicks' Grandson) and Elder Perry

There is a brotherhood here that can't be found anywhere else. The brotherhood that soldier feels between each other. “Only in this war, we don't fight with rifles but we must take forth or weapons, every word that proceedeth forth from the mouth of god” 
-  Jeffery R. Holland

Well, this is my week in a letter. Know I pray for you every day and night. I pray for your safety and know I love You!

Elder Perry
Canada Toronto Mission