Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Dear Hancock Family,

We are so glad to have your Missionary here with us in the Uruguay Montevideo West Mission. Since they arrived they have had the opportunities to do a session in the Montevideo Temple and meet their trainers! they have also enjoyed some delicious home cooked meals from Sister Peterson and experienced some of the typical Uruguayan cuisine. They are now preparing to travel to their areas and begin a great adventure in the service of the Lord. Thank you so much for preparing your missionary to serve with us here in the Uruguay West Mission!

Uruguay Montevideo West Mission

p.s. If you have any questions or concerns please don't hesitate to ask!

Monday, March 29, 2010

Correspondence between Dad & Elder Hancock

Dear Elder Michael Scott Hancock
So it's getting closer to leaving and going into the mission field, for the field is white all ready to harvest. Anyway, the last couple of days Friday and Saturday were pretty busy. On Saturday I stayed to wait for one of Daniels friends who had a group of prom goers. But right in the middle of when he should've been there, he calls Daniel to tells him that he decided that he wasn't going to go. Well, mom and I waited for them to no avail. Anyway Landon Young came in with his prom date he was pretty funny, and then Daniels group got there around 8 0'clock just a few hours later!! Daniel was pretty clever in pulling off a Spiderman spoof by hanging upside down on the rope in the studio and ask his date for the Spiderman upside down kiss, Ha ha, clever boy! But his date had VL [virgin lips] so she gave him one on the cheek instead (Good Girl!!) Anyway just a little tidbit. Hope all is well and that you're ready for your big move! We are still praying for you! And for your future investigators that they'll be ready for you when you get there.
Keep on tract'n! I love you! Love dad :-)

Post Script: I'll send you some pictures in the next letter of Daniels prom.

Michael's answer...

I can´t believe it´s prom already, I actually can´t believe it´s been two months already. In the moment it seems like it´s taking forever, but when looking back it seems like it´s going fast! Pretty weird, these next couple weeks, starting with the move tomorrow, are gonna be crazy getting used to everything, but It´ll be fine. Still don´t really know Spanish, but I´m learning :) I sent you a letter the other day, I don´t think it´s gone out yet so you probably won´t get it for awhile, but it was something I felt impressed to share, so you can look forward to that, it´s addressed specifically to you. I also sent the card and some other pics so you´ll get those. As for Daniel, he takes after his older brother ha!

New Address!

Pouch (only letters that are single sheet, folded in thirds and taped at top... no envelopes). This is great because it only uses one regular stamp.

Elder Michael S. Hancock
Uruguay Montevideo West Mission
POB 30150
Salt Lake City, UT 84130-0150

If you need to send an envelope or package, use the following address:

Elder Michael S. Hancock
Uruguay Montevideo West Mission
Avenida Italia 2364, Piso 4
11600 Montevideo

Last email from Argentina 29 Mar 2010 (photos)

My companion while at the MTC.
Hey, I got an opportunity to say hi before we leave in the morning and upload just a few pics, I probably won´t be able to upload more pics after, this is a rare opportunity, I actually just don´t know much about the mission yet, but I´ll learn this next week and I´ll let you know the details. I already sent the first camera card with some photos and other stuff so hopefully that will get to you soon, I haven´t gotten a letter though from Ariel yet, so It might be too late.
I get to watch conference in the field, hopefully an English version, but I don´t know. So we had our last sunday in the MTC a fast sunday as well, it was really good to hear everyone´s testimonies right before we leave.
Saturday in a nut shell, was like a roller coaster, we had some really good contacts, but also our worst ones so far. People who told us there was no way to know, we can only believe, people who said they just didn´t have time for religion, just didn´t care, and we had one man who was so far down the wrong path it was horrible listening to the crap (forgive my language) that he said, but on the brightside it made me realize how lucky we are to have this Gospel and how important it is to never give up cause there are people who a ready to hear, we just have to find them amongst everyone else. I did get to revisit a nice older lady and share some scriptures with her and give her a Book of Mormon. Also had a cool moment where my companion and I started teaching the first lesson to a few kids, the oldest about 14 or 15, and by the time we were finished there were actually about 10 kids who were all there listening to us. It was very neat, and kids actually listen and don´t fight back! :)
I´m excited for Johnny (Harr), comin up fast!
I still need an alarm clock, unfortunately. We might get a filtered bottle there, I´ll let you know all the details when I find out. Oh and we are taking about a 30 min. plane ride. Fun Fun!
Anyways, I´m waiting for my camera battery to charge so I might be able to send just a couple photos and then I´ll just send the camera card with the rest later on through the mail. I´m pretty excited to leave... a little nervous, but It´ll be fine, just not sure what to expect, I can´t believe it´s already been 2 months.. In the moment it goes by really slow, but when looking back it´s pretty fast. But I have confidence and I´m just happy to get out and teach, I think I don´t like staying in doors so much, so it will be nice to get out :) I won´t worry about not receiving letters, I´ll survive somehow :)
K, I didn´t have time to reduce the size, so I´m only posting three pics but you´ll get the rest through the mail.
These were taken this last sunday, one is just me and my companion, Elder Nielson, One´s our district with Presidente George, and the last one is of the temple, under construction, but I thought you´d want to see :) So there´s a tast of the life so far... now I´m just waiting for them to upload, probably won´t have this much time on the computer again.... so it´s kinda weird to just be sitting here not knowing exactly what to do. I´ve been studying a lot about trials, or "pruebas" as they say here, which is also is the word for test. And that´s exactly what trials are, tests. I spent sunday searching for scriptures about facing trials, enduring them, and why we have them, it was really nice, I wrote them all down on a piece of paper that I will keep in my scriptures when needed. Maybe if I have time I can send them in a letter and you guys can read them for FHE or something. Reading really slowly I can basically understand my scrips in Spanish, looking up words here and there, it´s pretty neat. Still really hard, but neat. It will definitely take a few months to get used to in the field, but it will come :)
I guess I can also take this opportunity to say how greatful I am for all that you do, my whole family, but you Mom, too, specifically... I always think of you when I read about the Stripling Warriors, rehearsing what their mothers taught them, they did not doubt, there mothers knew it... Really special, the verse says "mothers" 3 times, definitely not by mistake. Thanks for being a great Mom. Supportive and loving. And I sent Dad a letter in the mail the other day that says some more stuff, so don´t think I left him out, great Dad, great example of hard work. I love my family :) Oh, another fun tid-bit, you can let Mick know that I´ve worn his tie for every proseliting day so far for good-luck :) works pretty well :)
Well the pics are already done so I´m gonna wrap it up, I´m pretty much just babbling on anyways, I don´t know when I get to write home next, but I´ll be sure to give you all the details when I do.
Very last thing! I´d think writing home would make someone "trunky", but it´s actually kind of cool, I find when I get these opportunities to write some experiences, it actually boosts my confidence and makes me actually feel better. Kind of cool :)
That´s it! The pics are done! I´ll check back whenever I get the chance! ¡Hasta luego!

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Email March 25, 2010

Crazy!!! 5 more days!! We actually leave the MTC Tuesday at 4:30 in the morning!!! ugh! But I´ll just be excited to leave and get out. Don´t get me wrong, it´s been great here, but it´s time for a change, and I feel in order to progress with the language better and faster I need to be out there using it all the time, even though it´s gonna be dificult. I´m to the point where it only takes me about 15 min to learn how to teach another principle and be able to teach it decently, it´s pretty cool. Still have a hard time understanding people, especially those who don´t pronounce their words, especially the S´s, but I´ll get used to it eventually :)
I actually got both of the camera cards today! I don´t know why the first one took so long to get here, but I do have both of them, I haven´t written my letter today yet, but I am gonna send the one card back, take pictures this weekend with one of the new ones, and have that in case the first one doesn´t make it, so let´s just hope it does :) then I have a 3rd one for back-up! Thanks for the letters again by the way, I love them so much! And I did get my package from Aunt Amy and I loved IT! I sent them a letter!
Anyhow, empaƱadas are really good! We actually have them a lot here at the MTC! With chicken or beef and all sorts of delicious things inside! Make sure you eat them with your fingers, because that´s the propper way to do it!
Well in a quick summary, on Dad´s B-day we had a day of firsts for proseliting, our first time teaching lesson 3, to a guy we had actually had taught the two weeks before, our first prayer with an investigator, and our first time being invited in! very cool!
This las saturday was really cool too! Me and my companion had 30 contacts! 11 lessons, and we have a few ceitas for this next saturday, we´re really excited to head back to the area this week!, anyways I need to get off, but I get a chance to email Monday before I leave the MTC so... until then! LOVE YOU ALL!!!!!!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Email 18 Mar 2010

Ya, St Patrick´s day isn´t celebrated out here, but all the North Americans wore they´re green ties, and even presidente was excited about it. Everyone is pretty much better that I know of, so it´s all good. So I´ve actually run out of time, not sure how and need to get off, so I´m not gonna be able to reply to dad´s letter or much actually, the system was down most of the time, but I am good, Saturday proseliting on Dad´s b-day was amazing, i´ve written more about it in a letter that I´m sending out today so you´ll get that in a bit, and I can write more about it next week, love you tons! Thanks for all you do, hasta luego!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Letter to parents 8 Mar 2010

Dear Parents:
Hola! This letter is a reply to both your letters. I got 3 this week all on Tuesday the 2nd, but I guess you sent them at different times. Anyhow I love getting them. Right now I'm over halfway finished here at the MTC... Crazy! We leave for the mission home on Tuesday the 30th, and we get to our first area the following Thursday. I'm actually gonna be really excited to get out of here, but it's a little scary too. It's gonna be hard out there that first while... oh well, we press on. Still have a few weeks left here though, though I still know I won't know enough... I am learning... just a lot to learn. They say you'll learn to talk out in the field... but it will be a crazy first few weeks, even months, but we press on. I actually have only 8 envelopes left and about 22 pieces of stationary left, it should last me till the end of the MTC experience, but if you could send some more after that would be cool. Anyhow, it's nice here. The language is the only thing that really is stressing. The food is good, the people are awesome, it's great. This last week or 2 were hard though because everyone was getting sick. I was only a little sick for a couple of days, but nothing bad. This week everyone's been getting better though so it's all good :) I actually got to give a blessing, (well at least the oil part) to Presidente George! It was awesome to be able to use my priesthood in such a way. I'm sorry to hear about both Grandmas though... That's not fun at all, tell them I'm sorry and I'll pray for them. The mosquitoes seem to come and go. It rains on and off so that's probably why. The Deet works pretty well though, no problem. proseliting I've done twice now for 7 hours and this last time we were really blessed. We only had 11 contacts, but 10 of them were full lessons! We handed out 2 Book of Mormons, and we have an appointment for this Saturday! It was awesome! Amazing how we, with no skill speaking Spanish, were able to teach these people by power of the Spirit. There were 2 lessons especially that were really powerful. One with a girl named Tela and one with a man Juan Carlos whom we have the appointment with this Saturday. It's awesome! :)
Oh, just the frogs were squished. Probably just live near by, get flooded out, and run over by cars... ya. I can't believe April's that old! A Young Woman! Wow! and Dad's birthday is coming up in a couple weeks, 1st b-day I'll miss in the field, but I'm sure it will be great. I look forward to some packages too :)
I don't get chased by dogs, sometimes followed, but not chased... barked at too. Congrats to the soon to be newlyweds! That's come up pretty fast. I can't believe Daniel's had the time to finish Ghost Recon with how busy he's been, and congrats to you too Dad for keepin with it. I haven't seen any snow yet... sorry:) I'm surviving here, I worry too much still, but the Spirit keeps me in check. And I can't believe Ariel has glasses! Ha... that's different. "Loves Labors Lost" is hilarious, you'll love it :) I think the individual features of my face more resemble dad, but the face structure is more like Mom's... if that makes sense.
Well thanks for writing :) Keep in touch, I've got under 4 weeks left here, then I'm in the big world! Love you tons!
-Elder Michael Hancock-

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Did the middle 3 weeks go by the fastest?

On Wed, Mar 10, 2010 at 8:57 PM, Laurie Hancock wrote:

Dear Elder Hancock,

So, was it true what they said? Did the middle 3 weeks go by the fastest? You are going to be finished with the MTC and out to your mission before you know it!

Exciting! Do you know for sure when you leave the MTC? Will it be before General Conference the first weekend in April?

How did the appointment go on Saturday? Did the MTC get their next batch of greenies?

Did you get the camera card yet? I sent it in a regular envelope with a letter from April.

Went to the temple this morning and did sealings. There was a young man there also doing sealings who just got back from a mission to Bolivia and Peru. Another sister doing sealings is also related to Dad through Levi Ward Hancock. Small world!

I gave the FHE lesson Monday on being a peacemaker. I asked everyone who is good example of a peacemaker? I expected to get Jesus as an answer and I did, but not before you were mentioned! You will be happy to know that you are thought of a peacemaker in our home :) and that you got top billing along with the Savior!
That quality probably makes you a great District Leader! Keep up the good work!

Always remember we love you! and of course, your Heavenly Father loves you!!!!!

Love, MOM


From: Michael Scott Hancock
Subject: Re: from Mom
Date: Thu 03/11/10 12:12 PM

The 3 middle weeks went by real fast actually, the older elders are gone now, it was a little sad to see them go cause we´ve known them for 6 weeks now, but there out working now and soon it will be our turn. They told us the next two weeks will still go by fast, but the last week is really slow. I´ve felt at times that I just want to get out in the field and get to work, but it´s nice to have 3 more weeks to practice because I still can´t really speak the language. I can teach well and usually get my point across....ok.. sometimes, and I can read and usually understand what I read and sometimes what I hear, but speaking regularly won´t come till a bit of time in the field, but I´m patient and happy with where I´m at :) We leave the 30th, the Tuesday right before April, we´ll be at the mission home the rest of tuesday and wednesday, and we leave for our first area that thursday, April fools day! Not sure what will happen with conference, probably I´ll get to hear it in Spanish.
This last Saturday was a lesson learner and a blessing too. Our ceita (appointment) fell through, Juan Carlos said he was too busy, but he had been reading he said and we´re stopping back by this saturday to check, we also ran into another man, Miguel, whom we had met the week before as well and he too was reading, he also didn´t have much time at the moment, but he said he´d go to church the week after next... not sure if he will, but who knows? We had a couple other really good contacts one of them actually spoke 11 years worth of English! lucky us!! And we taught him partly in Spanish and in English all of lesson 1 and gave him a Book of Mormon, he seemed really interested and we were lucky to find him, we´re not sure if his home is in our area or one of the other companion´s areas, so we´re all gonna try to find it this Saturday and visit with him, his name´s Enrique. We had another opportunity to give out a BOM to Eziquiel, not sure if that´s the spelling, we taught him lesson 1 as well, all in Spanish this time. He seemed like he needed it, never broke eye contact... pretty cool. So lots of good contacts and some fun stuff in store for this Saturday, however, we did have our first "Bible bash" technically... and it was frustrating. It was a lady who was Christain... but didn´t really have a religion.. confusing, she had a little bit of English, not nearly as much as Enrique, so the conversation with her was another half and halfer.... she basically just tried to preach to us, neither of us got heated, but she was just so set in her way, she believed in God and Christ, but not that Christ also became a God, or that we can become God´s, she also didn´t believe in the pre earth life, and every scripture we gave her she just interpreted it so differently, we spent more time there than we should have cause there was just no convincing her, but at the end she basically bore her testimony to us and it was interesting cause you could feel something... weather she had really felt the Spirit in her life before or not we don´t know, however I bore my testimony of how I came to know the Gospel was true right after and the feeling was 10 times stronger and more powerful, what she took from it we don´t know, she said she´d pray for us and we told her we´d pray for her and left it at that. It´s was good for us to go through one of those so early on just to know what to expect and it actually increased our testimony. I know this church is true and nothing could ever convince me otherwise.
I just was handed another letter from you guys so I´ll try to reply to it later, doesn´t feel like the one with the card so hopefully I get that one later :) I have some pictures, can´t send any over email, but when I do get the card in the mail I´ll send the one I do have, it has a few pictures and a couple film clips too :)
I´m glad to hear that I´m being thought of at home :) peacemaker.... hmmm.. that´s cool :)
I got your package and you don´t know how happy it´s made me :) and I´m not eating it all real fast, I´ve been holding myself back, Thanks so much though! nice to have some American candy!
I also realized Dad´s B-day is coming up HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! How old are you gonna be?! I´ll be out proseliting on your b-day so I´ll be sure to work extra hard!
Anyhow, I better end this, it´s pretty long. I was released as District leader, 6 weeks is up, now my companion is actually the new District leader for the last 3 weeks, pretty funny, oh, did I mention my companion´s B-day is November 6th as well? There´s a fun tid-bit :) anyhow, thanks for keepin me in touch! I love my family sooooooo much! Keep pressing on!
Love Elder Hancock

Did the Earth move!

Dear Elder Hancock (An email short)

So did you feel the whole continent move 1" in your area? That's what the geologist said, and that it moved 10' (feet) on the other side of the fault line toward the ocean in Chile. hmmm, you must be dizzy! All is well in this Zion... How are you? and how's your companion? Language? etc.? Be good, :) Send photos!!!

Love Dad!

I actually didn´t feel any movement over here, sorry. But that´s interesting. Life´s good over here, I can understand Spanish a little more everyday, I can read pretty well in Spanish and understand most all of it, just hard to speak it. I can teach some lessons though :) I´ll learn faster in the field though. And my companion is good, awesome companion and we work pretty well with eachother. I can´t send pics over the web, not enough time. Plus we can only take pics every 3 weeks.... so only twice so far, but I´ll send the card later on through mail.

Love Elder Hancock :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Letter to Fam - 25 Feb 2010

Hola! Como esta?
I love getting your letters :) Helps me every week! This letter is a reply to Mom's she sent the 13th, I got it on the 23, not too bad. So as of today I'm already 1/24 of the way done with my mission, weird to think about it in that way. I'm glad to hear the Studio is being taken care of, I hope everything's looking up over there. Things are better here. I still worry myself with the language every now and then, but I am learning stuff and I can handle it much better now. I'm being blessed by God, he's answering my prayers. I'm quite used to it here now too.
Daniel told me about his play before I left, that it was weird and all. I know this is late, but good luck to him! You can tell Daniel to tell Mr. Smith I say "Hi" :)
That's so cool Tyler and Joseph are back, and soon Jamie Pyne will be back, and so on... you'll have to let me know how many Elders are hanging on the wall before me and count them down. :) Can't believe they're already back, that must've been a good Sacrament meeting.
Sounds like you had an exciting week, any week with Pride & Prejudice I guess :) I'm not really missing movies or TV much yet... We get to watch a church movie every Sunday, that's always fun. I do catch myself a lot singing or humming a song I used to listen to and I have to tell myself to stop, but it's not bad. I don't even miss Ghost Recon or Spider Man as much as I thought :) ha! ha! But when I do come home in 23 months, make sure you have some root-beer for me when you pick me up :) ha! ha!
We do go proseliting every Saturday here, 1st 2 weeks for 2 hours, the rest for 7 hours. So I've been out for 7 hours once already, and I actually really liked it, even though I can't speak really. It was nice to get out and see how blessed we were even though we couldn't speak much spanish. Even handed out a Book of Mormon! I'm actually looking forward to this Saturday :)
As District Leader I get to assign hymns and prayers and thoughts for all the classes, but I decided to just make a chart! I have meetings with the President to talk about our districts, assign cleaning responsibilities, keep track of goals, lead some of the bigger meetings...uh... and try to maintain order :) and whatever else I'm asked to do. Oh! and I do get a cellphone every Saturday during proseliting :)
Thanks so much for your prayers! Keep them going. I definitely have felt better recently and it's no doubt because of prayer and My Father in Heaven (Padre Celestial). Keep sending letters! I'll let you know when I need more envelopes or papers if I can't get any here, and stamps! I look forward to reading your emails! Can't believe it's already been a month! I love you all so so so much! Be strong!
-Elder Michael Hancock-

email 4 Mar 2010

It´s kinda sad, the new missionaries know a lot of Spanish, well a few of them, already coming in and it makes me wish I knew more before, but I´ll survive and be just fine. I already kinda feel like I want to get out of here though, yet I don´t want to because I want to learn more Spanish first, but they say you learn faster in the field, but the first few weeks or month is really frustrating.... but you push on. I´m still glad I have a few more weeks to go here. Ya everyone´s getting pouches of sweets here, it´s not breaking rules, only if it´s an acutal box package i think. I do only have 8 envelopes left and about 22 pieces of stationary, which I should be enough for the rest of the MTC, but if you could send some more maybe later, that would be nice :) I´m also sad to say my alarm clock fell and stopped working... I guess if you wanted to send me a new one in the field you could... I´m really sad about it, it worked well, anyhow... Sugus are delicious, we only get to buy them, or anything for that matter, when out proseliting, cause that´s the only time we´re actually out. But they´re a chewy fruit flavored candy, kind of like the fruity mentos and skittles combined. The only real candy I´ve had for awhile :) I´m actually switching to a new account so I´ll send you the new address when I get it. And April is too young to be going to Jr. High yet! I actually really love that same chapter in Helaman, not for the famine, but because Nephi is so faithful that he can ask for anything because God knows he will only ask for good things... really neat. Speaking about the Gospel.. I had my second 7 hour proseliting experience last saturday and it was amazing! We only had 11 contacts, but 10 of them were pretty much full lessons! We even have one appointment for this Saturday. And we handed out 2 Book of Mormons. I can´t believe we can go out knowing hardly any Spanish, and still be able to share this Gospel with these people, they can still feel the Spirit, it´s definitely God teaching through us, it just felt so amazing, one girl, Tela, acctually had tears in her eyes, and another man, Juan Carlos, the man we have the appointment with saturday, I could tell he felt something as well, it was a very personal lesson, very cool! Just thought I´d share that. This is 2 teenage boys who never knew Spanish, been here learning for only a month, and we could still share this Gospel and Spirit with God´s help. It´s an obra maravillosa (marvelous work). Thanks for keeping in touch, and for your prayers, continue praying for me and I´m always praying for you! Love you tons! Till next week :