Current Mission Address

Elder Dane Edward Eskildsen
Brazil Santa Maria Mission
Caixa Postal 0339

Centro Quarai-RS 97560-000

(updated 1/13)

Monday, December 10, 2012

To answer your question, yes, guns are illegal in all of Brazil. That was a big no-no that the Elder comitted. My deviated septum is fine, I think that it has always been this way, but I just never had a doctor that actually checked for that. I dont think it has anything to do with the wax problem, but it might, because he wasnt going to check my nose, but when he looked in the entrance of the eustacian tube (the tube that goes from the mouth to the ear) and because of that he looked in my nostrils. So who knows maybe it has something to do with the problem. The surgery for a deviated septum is 4000 reais here which is about 2000 dollars US. Chances are I will have to do it there in the states when I get back. Unless it is way cheaper here. The ear candles work but at the same time they dont. I had accumulated so much wax that even the candles were really doing nothing, mostly because the wax was really deep.
I have gotten a few articles of snail mail. I will also send that thing in soon about my drivers liscence. I also got the missionary newsletter. Tell Matt Hadley that he will probably end up serving in the hometown of the elder that I am training. Its a city called Vitoria da conquista. From what I was told that will be one of the most temporate cities on the mission, but the state that matt will be in is known for being EXTREMELY hot in general.
Im not sure exactly where the area I am is in relation to the downtown but I beleive it is to the west. The house I am living in is really pretty nice. It gets really hot and humid inn there but I think that is a common trait with the houses here in the mission. It has all of the necessities of life, and we have managed to keep it relatively clean. The Christmas decorations with the rich people is a lot like the US but a little less ostentatious. The humbler people generally have a few lights and a very small Chrstmas tree and maybe a wreath on thier doors. The lights and stuff dont even make it seem like Christmas. It is way to hot to be the holidays haha.
It seems as though the ward has the same small problems that all other wards have, although connell 1st is a little zion. It is also impossible for the ward missionaries here to teach the new member discusions. What is needed for the new members is to really comprehend the commandments, especially the importance of sacrament meeting.
As for my district it kind of stayed the same. Only the arms trafficker was sent away to Panambi and a literal african was put in his place. My district will also grow in this transfer. One more companionship is going to be sent here, thus making my district enormous! Its going to be even more challenging than it already has been, but I am ready. As it turns out Elder Bargas was transferred to go to another area in Santa Maria. But other than taht nothing has changed. Here is a voice recording that talks about some of the peeps we are teaching. Love you and hope you are doing well!
-Elder Eskildsen


Monday, December 3, 2012

Dec 3, 2012

2012Dang thats pretty crazy that dad still has work in December. Is it still not getting to be very cold there? Im lucky that we still havent gotten to the point that not even a shower cools us off. It hasnt gotten SUPER hot yet, or rather, its been hot, but it isnt nonstop. The nights still get a bit cool. I will enjoy it while it lasts. I didnt even know that the Christmas devotional happened. No one in this ward said anything about it. Thats too bad. Maybe they will re air it in Portuguese or something.

That sounds cool that we have relatives in the bread business. I really do like bakeries but it seems as though that is something that is on the decline in the US. Here in Brazil they are sometimes found on every corner.

I had a feeling that James would have a bit of trouble on the mission. Jacob worte me a letter a while back and by the way James talked about his mission it didnt seem like he was really wanting to be there. The difference is really in the desire to serve the lord. Something that no one can be forced to do.

So I received a package a few weeks back but I dont know if it is one of the two that you mentioned. It was the one that had the shoes in it. Is there two more besides that one? I got that letter that you sent with colemans email in it.

This week was good but it sure was a test of patience. We had interviews with President which went very well. He gave me a few counsels on how to deal with my district and then asked me ´´did you know that your companion, Elder xxx has a weapon?´´ He then proceeded to tell me that someone informed him that he has a gun. Not a small gun but a musket. A large musket. I was 99% positive the my comp doesnt have a gun. He asked everyone in our house the same thing. As it turns out he does not have a gun, but as we did some detective work we found out that an Elder in xxx does in fact have a gun. He bought a gun to sell to a recent convert. There are 2 problems with that. First of all in all missions in the world missionaries are prohibited to have guns. Second is that Guns are illegal here in xxxx   thus classifying what this xxxxx did as illegal arms trafficking. That made this week a bit difficult and there were a few emergency transfers.
We did find some good people to teach though. We are still having a bit of trouble getting people to go to church, but other than that the work is going well.
I went to a ear nose and throat doctor the other day because Ive been pretty deaf in my left ear for the past (4) weeks. As was expected it was only caused by ear wax build up, so I took a medication to soften the wax to be extracted later today. He also did a basic face area exam and he discovered that I have a deviated septum which is obstructing almost entirely my left nostril and causing difficulties on the right. So I found out why I have a hard time breathing through my nose and why I feel like im suffocating in very humid places. Dang. Im full of little problems haha. This next week is gonna be good and if I get transferred I will be sure to tell you ASAP.



November 28, 2012

Sounds like the trip was a lot of fun, notwithstanding the heat etc. I can definitely tell ya that it is starting to get pretty hot here in Santa Maria. Im not sure how ready I am for the heat. The other day it was only about 97 degrees but it already felt like I was standing in an oven. I cant even imagine what it is going to be like here in a month or two when it starts to get over 105.
So the house is going to be even bigger? Thats crazy. At least there will be enough rooms for all of us when we return from BYU during the holidays. Is Bergen already getting used to the idea of being the only child left at home here in a few months?
I am really excited to go on some hikes when I get back. That is one thing that I really miss and that we arent allowed to do here on the mission.
Grandma mentioned a bit about Katelyns man in the letter she sent me. I guess things are getting a bit serious. Dang. She needs to wait to get married so that I will be able to be there at the wedding.
Yes there are 4 people that live in the house with me so those 4 stockings will work out well. I am thinking I wont get transferred, but there is still a small chance I may be. President is going to transfer a few more people today and tomorrow and a few more people here in 2 weeks to not mess with the transfers too much during Christmas time.
And dont worry I have been trying to remember to use sunscreen. Sister Ribeiro has been really worried about the white missionaries and our sunburn potential.
   The baptism was really great this weekend! There were quite a few people that showed up and the meeting was very spiritual. I performed the ordinance and it was nice to be able to enter the water again. Our week was good and the lessons that we taught were very good as well, but we are still having a lot of trouble getting our investigators to go to church. Everyone says that they are 100% that they will go to church, we call and remind people, they say they will go, and then when we get to church no one is there. We will have to see what everyones excuses are this week. We did find some really good new investigators towards the end of the week that said they would go next week but in couldnt go yesterday. hopefully these people will progress more. Luckily many of the new investigators we have live close to our house and subsequently close to the chapel. This next week is definitely going to be a good one. My camera was dead a t the baptism and so I will send you pics of it next week. I love you all and hope you are doing well!

Oh and tell Mikaela, Katelyn, and Uncle Scott Stapleton that I wrote letters to them, but I simply forgot to bring them with me downtown to send in the mail so I will send them next week. Chances are they will get to the states by Christmas time


November 15, 2012

Wow it sounds like this last week really was a difficult one. It is really sad that Brother Simpson passed away. He was a great scout master and a great guy.
This last week as well was a bit difficult. Mostly because it was very rushed and complicated but also because we were disappointed by the fact that all of the people we invited to go to church didnt end up going. The guy we are going to baptize didnt end up going either, and we still havent been able to talk with him. Im hoping he hasnt been having more problems with his heart. We will talk to him sometime soon to make sure everything is alright. We are really needing to find new people to teach. The people we had found the past several weeks/months dont really fulfill any of the comitments that we leave with them, so we have ended up cutting most of our teaching group and it is being really difficult trying to find other good investigators to teach. We have tried to get references from the members but to be honest that has brought in nothing until now. Im feeling that the member references are going to be more of a long run project. We taught several new people this week but none of them seem that they are going to take seriously the invitations that we leave with them. Part of the eason this week was so complex was that I did a 2 day division with another companionship in my district. It went really well and I was able to have great teaching experiences with Elder Lana that is in one of the other areas. I was able to see how his work is going and what he can do to improve etc. It was also quite exciting to get to know another area. We taught a 7th day adventist who the elders there are going to baptize. He is a really good guy, but he is still pretty hung up on the idea of sabbath day worship on saturday and the consumption of pork. We explained a little bit about the fulfillment of the law of Moses by Christ, but he says that although he will still be baptized he will never stop keeping the sabbath on Saturday in his heart. The division ws good, but we are still needing to better our own work here in Santa Marta. This week we will have to work really hard to improve things.
You are going on ANOTHER cruise?! Havent you gone on enough cruises these days? Did there ever end up having an ocean trip with Grandma e grandpa Eskildsen this year?
I didnt get any letters or packages this week but later today I will go see if I was so blessed. If you could put a few stacks of post it notes in the package that would be perfect. When following up the numbers of the district the sticky notes really help. Also something that I have been craving is stuffing. If there is room in the box you should send me a box of stuffing (the instant kind). Besides socks and jelly bellies, I cant think of anything else I need. But I love you all and hope you are doing very well!
-Elder Eskildsen


November 5, 2012

Thats cool that dad is getting some more work in before the end of the year. Isnt it really out of the normal to get so much work this late in the season? This is a blessing resultant of tithing, did you know?Also the house thing is going to be weird, but it will just compliment the rest of the weird changes that are going to have been made during my 2 year absensce. Also I dont mind if you send me pictures that doesnt bother me at all. I havent yet got any packages or pics, but yet again I will be going to the post office here in a few hours to grab the mail and I will know then if I get anything.
Its good to know that Corwin finally has a drivers lisensce and not just a permit now. It is also nice to hear that he has gone with the most popular car model in the Rio Grande do Sul: an old VW beetle. There are a lot of people here that have that same car. How is Corwin doing do you know? maybe Jase knows a little. Its cool that you saw Alex as well. I will definitely have to hang out with him in the short period that I am at home before BYU. Its going to be a busy few weeks.
   This week was good in certain aspects but was a bit difficult. There was a really awesome Zone conference that we had with President Ribeiro. It got me a little bit more excited and way more pressured to work more efficiently and better with the members. In our mission at the moment practically no one is working well with the members, so that will definitely be something that we are working on this week. I ate some food that was bad monday night and passed all of Tuesday as the king of the bathroom. I got some pretty bad food poisoning and was incapacitated for one full day (tuesday) and I didnt completely ´´normalize´´ until Thursday. But I am better now and free of sickness. We had a really hard time fiding new people to teach this week. And the two people we did find arent too promising.. We still have a date marked for the 17th (we delayed the baptism a week so that we would have time to teach everything). Daniele the guy we are teaching and going to baptize has been having heart problems, and so it has been kind of hard to find him at home to teach him. He still has a very strong desire to be baptized and has been going to church for a while, so we will work hard to prepare him for the 17th. We are also trying to work with a guy who is married to a less active member. He is wanting to go to church etc, and he already knows that he is going to be baptized but it appears that his wife is the one that is more in the way than anything in terms of him going to church etc. I was a bit disanimated on saturday because we didnt teach very much and spent a lot of time walking and it was very very hot, but after a lot of prayer and a fast I am much better now. This work is true. Something I am doing with the Book of Mormon this week that I am enjoying is something that I beleive Elder Bednar said to do. To write a question in the front of the book, start the book over and look for an answer to that question while you read. I am discovering all kinds of new insights that I never thought of while doing a general reading. Well I love you and hope you are all doing very well. -Elder Eskildsen
oh and Socks. I would like socks in my Christmas package. Black socks. Also Jelly Belly Jelly beans if that is possible.

Oct 28, 2012

The week here was a bit sunny, but got really rainy during the weekend, which is awful because that is when church is. It is currently raining and this excess of rain is realy strange for this time of year here in Brazil. I bet Chelsea is super excited to start the mission. Has she left already, or is it this week that she leaves? I knew Matt was going to go to Brazil, but I was thinking he was going to go to this mission. He wil do great in whatever mission he goes to. Especially if it is to the north of Brazil, because those places already baptize A TON.
  Night flights are always some of the coolest things. It is especially cool when you block out the windows and depend only on the instruments while the instrutor messes with the controls. Talk about vertigo. It really helps to learn how to trust the instruments.

I still havent gotten that package that you sent me, but I will be going to the post office here in a few minutes, so if it is there I will know today. I am not being transfered (transfers are today) so I will definitely be here when the package comes. I dont really know how the PO box is working becaue NO ONE (besides you) sends me letters to the Po box. /only the the mission office, so I have still only been getting my letters on the transfer. If I were to be transfered, the letters will be forwarded by the LD to my new city and the packages will be retained by the secretaries and delivered ASAP. The next transfer date I beleive is December 5 (today being the start of the new transfer) and my district changed quite a bit and from the look of things this transfer will be much more difficult for me. Another district in the zone is closing and 2 of the duplas from that district are joining mine. There are now 6 companionships in my district which is going to make things a bit more work for me. I just hope that I can do something to augment the output of these missionaries.
This week was good and bad. I got sick and for about two days we didnt get a whole lot done, partly due to the fact that I was too obstinate to stay at home or call Sister Ribeiro. Im better now, but that effected out week quite a bit. We baptized Moisés. and the confirmation went well, even though he showed up late to sacrament meeting. The baptismal meeting was really spiritual and this ward is really good. He has already been going to church for a few months and he will be getting the aaronic priesthood soon. He also already has a companion for home teaching which is a miracle here. He also has a strong desire to serve a mission here in 2 years. We marked another baptismal date of a young man (21 years old) who has been going to church with his girlfriend who is a less active member that is returning. He says that he has never felt so good in any other church and even asked us at the beginning of the 1st lesson what he has to do to be baptized in our church. We told him and marked his date to the 10th of November and told him he has to pray. He said that he received a really strong answer that this church is true and he is more firm than ever in his resolve to be baptized. He has a few health problems since his birth including heart problems. He was not able to go to church yesterday because he had what turned out to be the start of a heart attack. He is super awesome and we are teaching his mother as well who is incredibly catholic. We have another family that we are teaching that is good but need to go to church. This next week we are going to work on cutting the non progressing investigators and finding new families to teach. The work was difficult this week and I was not at my best health but I know that this church and this work are true. I love you and hope you are doing amazing! Also when does Matt leave?

first pic me and my comp and Moisés  2nd me and Elder R. Souza the only missionary in my district that I was sure was going to leave.

marked Moises for baptism Oct 22

Oct 22

Wow homecoming week sounds like it was a ton of fun this last week. It makes it so strange to think that I was in high school a very short time ago etc. That is so crazy that the recent convert of the Elders died! He was lucky to have learned about and accepted the gospel in this life. Studying a bit in the doctrine and Covenants I learned that the first 4 verses of Doctrine and Covenants 59 are directed to Polly Knight who died shortly after having arrived in the city that would become zion. She was persevering through a scikness, with hopes of being able to set foot on the land of zion. The verses infer that those who die in Christ shall have peace and ´´rest from thier labors´´. Surely this new member of the church is resting from his labors.
Thats cool that Katelyns ´´man´´ knows Portuguese. Who knows, maybe I will have someone t o converse with me and Uncle Scott Stapleton in Portuguese when I get back off the mission. Yea I remembered dads Birthday and I hope he is doing well. I am going to celebrate by having a baptism. Also tell Great Grandma Happy Birthday for me and that I am thinking about her and keeping her in my prayers.
   This week was a bit difficult in the sense that many of our appointments fell through. We passed several days of difficulty without giving very many lessons, but we had a few very good successes. One of them was that we marked the baptismal date of Moisés one of our investigators. He is a really good young man and has been well integrated into the ward. Additionally he has been attending church and mutual and other activities for the past several months. I think he is well ready for baptism.
This week got super hot and I have decided that I am not too ready for the summer. I am really having a hard time this week as well thinking about things to write. I love you and promise that my next email will be a bit longer and more fulfilling. Hope all goes well in Connell.


October 15, 2012 Santa Maria

October 15

With Bergen he wont be able to go out at 18 because he wont be graduated. He will still have to wait until he is almost 19 anyway. I think that this new revelation that the first presidency received will effect the young women of the church more. I think there are going to be TONS more sister missionaries in the field. I am glad I went out at 19 though beacause I had great experiences at BYU the first year before I went on the mission.

I am really excited to fly the Cherokee. I enjoyed the talk that Elder Uchtdorf Gave talking about his piper cub that he flew. He also talked about the Wright Brothers which afterwards sparked the same argument that the Brazilians have that Santos DuMont invented the airplane first. The truth is that there are many people that were tinkering with the idea of an airplane but those that flew first were the Wright Brothers, who took to the air one week before Santos DuMont. Yet besides the established dates and facts the brazilians will argue to the death about that.
Thats good that the misisonaries are doing well there. I think that the problem that they have there is the same problem that we have and that all missions must have. It is difficult to find normal people from stable families to teach that will actually ACCEPT the gospel and stay active in it. The people that have been baptised in most wards here in the past few years are more often than not incredibly strange and in some sort of extenuating circumstance and are unwilling to take the effort to go back to church.
Conferecne however was really great and I am excited to get the Ensign with all of the talks next month!

Well I hope that you are doing well with the ward there and that if you have any work this week that it can go well!
That is good that is starting to rain a little bit more there in connell. The rain here has stopped. The heat is manifesting itself, and I am praying to not melt in the next few months. I can imagine that Chelsea is super excited to be out in the field. I was the same way before going out into the MTC and even more excited to leave the MTC and enter the field.

I found that story of the felon a bit funny, just because it got rachel and Bergen so scared. So you got a VW? That is the brand of car that is most comon here in Brazil. Not usually new though. Joel Crowther has lost a lot of weight? He was already pretty skinny when he left for the mission. I hope he is doing fine. He is going to be getting back way soon. Same with Michael Casper and Blake Nielson. Im really excited now to be able to fly that Cherokee.
Did you send that Package to the P.O. Box (caixa postal) address? President and the secretaries are cracking down on letters now and have said that any letter that shows up at the Rua Pascualine address after November will not be given to us until THE END of our missions. They dont want ANYTHING showing up to the mission office. So if you could please advise the people that would be nice. Make sure that everyone that may send me a letter knows to send me a letter to the caixa postal address, because it seems that everyone still sends me letters to the mission office.
The missionary work is going great. We marked the baptismal date of Moisés a young man who has been going to church for about 3 months now, who is essentially already a member. WE are going to baptize him and help him to receive the aaronic priesthood so that he can baptize his friend here in a few months.

We found some really awesome people this week and our perspective sucess is pretty big. We went and talked to Rose, our investigator who told us that her husband has softened to the gospel and now has a huge desire to go to church and keep the commandments etc. They have been taught by missionaries in the past, but he was always hiding from them and never keeping the comitments, but Rose said that ever since we started teaching them he has changed and is really wanting to follow the gospel. We are working on getting them married soon so that they can be baptized next month.
We also found, several weeks back a less active lady who is legally married to a nonmember and this week we finally managed to teach them again. She has a great desire to return to church and I am certain that he will be a member of the church relatively soon.
The ward here is one of the strongest in the mission, and I am really greatful for the members here. Granted the ward has problems, but which ward doesnt. Im hoping I stay here for at least one transfer.
The nearest temple from here is in Porto Alegre which is about 4 hours or so from here.
I love you and hope that everything is going great there!
-Elder Eskildsen


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Out of order blogs

I came across some blogs that I thought I had published for Dane and they were saved in the DRAFTS!   These are from last November and even in February so the last 3 posts are not in his current area!    SEND ALL MAIL TO THE ADDRESS in the header.  I will keep that current

November 21 Uruguaiana

Hey everyone!

I think todays post is going to be pretty short. This past week has been pretty good, andit only exceeded 100 degrees for two days or so! I am having a great time here in Uruguaiana, and have spent a lot of time in the Ipiranga area searching for people to teach! The members dont give us a lot of
referrals so we are subjected to roaming the streets finding those willing to hear our message. It´s not too bad though because I like street contacts and  knocking doors. (Or at least I do at the moment. Give
it a few months and that may change.) But as for now I am loving the missionary work. This week
has been anything but fruitful though. We lost a few investigators and baptismal dates. Notwithstanding that, I have high hopes for the coming week. I  honestly think that things will go swimmingly this week. (More on that later)

Whoever said that I wouldnt be  eating a lot of meat on my mission was telling a bold
faced lie. Either that or they werent familiar with the
Santa Maria mission and thus were lying in ignorance.
But what I am essentially saying is that I have enjoyed
my fair share of meat in the past week. It has been
splendid. The people here really know how to cook.
They also know how to force second and third helpings
on me, no matter how hard I plead to the contrary.
I may have trouble staying ´´skinny´´ on this mission.
But its all good because I have been running with Elder
Bott the past few days to help him get back into
shape for his track scholorship, and to keep me
from becoming twice the Dane I was when I entered

Theres a lot more to say, but not too much more time.
Also I grow weary of typing. I hope the best for
everyone, and if you have questions, comments, or
concerns please send all letters to the following
address, and I will get back to you in a (relatively)
timely manner:

Caixa Postal 0339
Santa Maira - RS
97001 - 976

-Elder Eskildsen

January 23, 2012

Olá Guris!
This week has been a good one. On Monday night Elder de Souza was mercilessly torn from me leaving me alone,destitute, and forced to wander from Elder to Elder, not having any true home. ( There is a picture of us at the bus station somewhere. I would put an arrow or something pointing to it but I dont know where it will be posted....---- or ----->       v    ^   ...... There that pretty  much covers all the directions. We are both smiling but dont be fooled. It was brutal.) But anyway, for the next several days after that I was bereft of a companion and had to spend time with other missionaries who had already shown up. It was not until wednesday evening that my new 
companion Elder D. Melo showed up. (Photo coming soon). Therefore Thursday was the real day where we
were set into ´´hard working missionary´´ mode. As a result of the fact that neither Elder Melo nor I have much
experience with this new area, we spent most of the first few days discovering the area. The term ´´to discover´´ to 
a missionary does not just mean to explore. No, it means oh so much more than that. We started with a map and 
some word of mout instructions and found people to our hearts content. We found the houses of many members 
and talked a bit with them, and from there got references and water. (It´s been above 40 Celcius here each day, which is like 104 in real temperature). We also spent time visiting the pre-us investigators. And, of course, no missionaries life is complete without the tabooed door to door proselyting. Safe to say we did a bit of that as well, just for safe measure. These past few ´´initiation´´ days opening this area here have been pretty eventful, filled with joy and love and the gospel of Christ. 
Yea, I dont have much else. Its time to go grocery shopping. I hope a wonderful week for all of you where ever you may be.

Monday, October 8, 2012


September 3, 2012

Sounds like the labor day is going to be good. I really miss a good cinnamon roll, among many other things that I miss. Mostly breakfast foods, because breakfast is virtually nonexistent here. I didnt know that McKae was going to Cambodia. So she didnt end ip going on a mission? Thats cool though that she will be doing something pretty cool as well. Yea Chelsea wrote me a dear Elder. It works here, but I think you have to pay to get it sent here. Also now with the new post office box we will be able to receive letters every week. Chances are that I will be getting that letter you sent today, unless it took a long time to get here, but it wasnt there last week when I checked. Yea the package hasnt come either.

That sounds like a really cool experience with the baptism of Ashley.Im sure she is an awesome addition to the ward, and she lucked out that she was baptized in a ward that is so great and that are going to be by her side whenever she may need them.

It is interesting that you talked about faith, because our mission this last week was reprimanded for its lack therof, and we were set to study a few chapters in the scriptures: Hebrews 11, Alma 32, Moroni 7 (only part, but I cant remember which part) and Ether 12. They are all really awesome selections talking about faith. We all have room in our lives to improve and grow our faith. That is evident by the fact that most of us have not perpetrated such wonders as those of Moses and Enoch. (Heb. 11) There are many people that we meet here who dont talk to us or who bash down our message by saying that they already have a knowledge of Christ and are already on the right path, and thus need no more, notwithstanding the many erroneous aspects of thier life, worship, and conduct. They essentially say that they have no need of faith because they have convinced themselves that there will be no consequence for thier weak belief in a higher power. Those who have true faith will always seek out to augment that which they already have. They will always seek to know Christ even more. We cannot let ourselves be lured into complacency lest we stagnate in a mire of false assurances of our own certainty. Further, those with true faith always strive to develop attributes similar to those of Christ and to turn thier lives completely in accordance with His will. Essentially like you said is to continually put your faith into action in order to always be on the increase. There is always more to learn and there is much more that we have in our power to do if our faith becomes unshakeable and wide.

I wish I could have been back for Spencers baptism, and I am sure that it was a really great meeting and reunion. And dang it is so weird to think of Matt and Tyson at BYU and on the football team, because they seem so young in my mind. It is as though since I left for college and now for the mission everyone else from Connell has ceased to grow up, but that is obviously not true. And yea you can have a moustache at BYU, just no other facial hair. Is Spencer about to get married yet? also is Matt putting his papers for his mission in yet? Also I was looking at the directory on at the missionary section. Did Brady come back from his mission? because he is no longer listed as a missionary in our ward.

I miss XC so much. Yea I also had ankle problems and they hurt a lot, but who knows if it is the same as what Bergen has, because all I did for it was stretch my ankles more and run through the pain.

This last week we spent a LOT of our time looking for new investigators because we still have not really been able to establish a good teaching group. We were pretty successful in our endeavor to find good new investigators. We found several families who accepted baptism and several other people who appear to have great potential to progress. We also had a lot of people being not to kind to us, which tends to happen here in the mission. The gaúcho do not like Mormons. We had a situation where we went back to a new investigator who we had marked with and who accepted baptism and in when we knocked on the door her little daughter answered. Then the investigators mom came out and told us that she wasnt there although we had clearly seen her through the window. As the mother of the investigator told us she wasnt there and we started to leave the investigators daughter yelled ´´Liar! Liar! she IS here! She IS HERE!´´ What a little darling, calling her mom out in her lies. People generally use every lie and every type of excuse here in order to not have to tell us no. There is some sort of taboo here around the use of the word ´´No´´. According to the moral of the people here it is better to lie and use excuses rather than say no they dont want to hear what we have to say. We werent able to get any of our investigators to church yesterday besides Moisés, but he cant get baptized for the next few months because he is less than 17. The rest of my district as well had a hard time getting people to go to church. Many things to work on.

Well I hope that the start of the school year is going well and that the Labor day holiday is awesome! I love you and have a great week!

-Elder Eskildsen



September 25

Well no need to fear because it seems that the letter wasnt as short as you implied it would be haha. I as well will make no promises about how long my letter will be, but it may be long. Who knows?

Its nice that the missionaries there are getting a lot of work, and it is funny that Rachel went out with the missionaries for a lesson. She told about her experience and she made it sound worse and more awkward than it really was. But then again I am a missionary and things just dont ever seem awkward anymore. I really am missing running and having the oportunity to do so during the day and not just in the mornings. I just never feel very good in the mornings (probably a result of not exercising) and so I have been quite negligent with my morning exercises.

I bet Chelsea is getting super excited to go off on her mission! That is super cool. Also it sounds a bit like the ward has changed A LOT since I was last there. It may be a little strange when I get back and give a talk to a bunch of people that I dont know. Also I am really going to be excited to get back to flying after the mission. In particular I would like to see how that Cherokee flies.

Alright well my new companion is a Brazilian (finally another Brazilian companion). He is from Bahia which is a part of Brazil that many people make fun of because of thier accent etc, but my companion is awesome! His name is Elder Almeida and any fear that I had of getting a new misisonary that wasnt going to know anything and wasnt going to want to work are now gone. He is really here just to serve the lord and came here with exactly the right attitude that is necessary for missionary work. He really has a desire to work and basically already came to the field as a fully trained missionary, besides the normal new missionary defects. But on tuesday Elder Strout went off to his new area in Santo Angelo and me and a bunch of other missionaries who were going to train and a few others that were waiting for buses (including my old companion Elder Glazier) went off to the casa grande or rather, the mission home. There we just waited for like 6 hours talking etc and waiting for the new misisonaries showed up. Then the new kids showed up (which I didnt even percieve until a half hour after they showed up because I was upstairs and they entered in the garage.) We all got to go to President Ribeiros house that night to eat A TON of pizza with the new missionaries and there we found out who our new companions would be. It was a really cool experience there. I love any oportunity that I have to go to Presidents house, it is really nice. The next day we had a day long training for the trainers first (for about an h our) and then for the trainees. I am really excited for these next few transfers with my new companion becuase we are going to have a lot of sucess. We found a man who is married (LEGALLY!!!) to a less active lady who really likes the church and seems like she has a great desire to start going back to church, and her husband is very receptive as well. We also have a few other part member families we are working with that need to get married so that they can be baptized. We are also teaching a man named Ademir who without fail understands the message of the restoration and the need of a true church and prophet, etc. he even told us that he had been praying that a pastor or someone suchas would pass by his house (because he and his wife have a newborn baby) and the pastors of the churches that he visited didnt ever come and then we ended up knocking on his door. He is definitly prepared to accept the message of the gospel! We have got some awesome people we ar eworking with and we are going to try hard in the next few weeks to work with the lord in order to find those who are ready to accept the gospel.

In relation to my responsibilities as a leader it still feels a bit like I am working with children. My district is having a very hard time finding GOOD new investigators and dont seem to have hope nor faith in order to find them. It seems as though the mission as well is having a dry spell in terms of success in the past few months. We really just lack the faith that we can change the people here. But anyway things are still going well.

I love you and hope everything is going great for you there in good ol´ connell!

-Elder Eskildsen




September 30, 2012   Yea September did go by really quick, mostly because I was switching companions so often, so it made it seem as though time was on overdrive. The opposite has happened here in Santa Maria. We have had a winter kick and so it has stayed pretty cold and rainy instead of going into the heat of the summer. (thank goodness, because I am stil preparing myself for one more summer). That also cant have been good for your flying either, because the heat of the summer makes landings tough. Yea RAchel already said that she is going with Colton, but it didnt even hit me that Bergen was going to be going. I dont know who Rian Naef is. But I am sure he will have tons of fun.

I didnt even realize that you already had the houseplans underway. I though this was some fanciful game you were playing in your minds and eventually get around to in the spring. Dang, it looks like I am going to come home to a new house then. Dont let any of my things get hurt in the move.

And with that slug I saw him pretty early. I have gotten into the habit of inconspicuously examining my food before I eat it, and I was wondering what the dark spot on my lettuce could be. Upon turning the lettuce I beheld a slug. Que bom. I was going to keep quiet about it, but one of the elders near me took the plate to the kitchen and showed the sisters who were making our lunch and they were thouroughly apologetic. Poor ladies making our lunch. It really wasnt that big of a deal but they just felt so bad. I wasnt obligated to eat the lettuce though...

The work is going quite well. We prayed this week to find 4 families to teach, but we only ended up finding three, although all of them are really good families. The weeks here go by slow but so much seems to happen in the week. We have found a TON of new investigators this week Almost all of them were really good too. We just need to be able to find them for a second visit and talk soon about the Book of Mormon so that they be CONVERTED! We had a couple go to church this week and they really liked it. They have a desire to be baptized, but first they have to get legally married and they have to make it so that they can attend our ward in the morning instead of just going to the afternoon ward. It will be easy for them to get sunday mornings off seeing as they own the fruit stand they work at. They are also friends with a family of members from our ward which also makes things easier.

My district is a lot more animated than they had been and they are starting to have some good results, which makes me very happy. things are starting to go better for all of the companionships in my district but we still have to push ourselves to get better.

Im super excited for conference this weekend! But I love you all and hope you have a great conference week!

-Elder Eskildsen

October 8With Bergen he wont be able to go out at 18 because he wont be graduated. He will still have to wait until he is almost 19 anyway. I think that this new revelation that the first presidency received will effect the young women of the church more. I think there are going to be TONS more sister missionaries in the field. I am glad I went out at 19 though beacause I had great experiences at BYU the first year before I went on the mission.

I am really excited to fly the Cherokee. I enjoyed the talk that Elder Uchtdorf Gave talking about his piper cub that he flew. He also talked about the Wright Brothers which afterwards sparked the same argument that the Brazilians have that Santos DuMont invented the airplane first. The truth is that there are many people that were tinkering with the idea of an airplane but those that flew first were the Wright Brothers, who took to the air one week before Santos DuMont. Yet besides the established dates and facts the brazilians will argue to the death about that.
\Thats good that the misisonaries are doing well there. I think that the problem that they have there is the same problem that we have and that all missions must have. It is difficult to find normal people from stable families to teach that will actually ACCEPT the gospel and stay active in it. The people that have been baptised in most wards here in the past few years are more often than not incredibly strange and in some sort of extenuating circumstance and are unwilling to take the effort to go back to church.
Conferecne however was really great and I am excited to get the Ensign with all of the talks next month!

Thats crazy that Garrick is getting married. Hasnt he been back only a month or 2 ? Who is he getting married to?
Well I hope that you are doing well with the ward there and that if you have any work this week that it can go well!
Conference yesterday was really awesome. We were able to watch all of the sessions incuding the priesthood session. The only downside was that I am the only American in my district, so there was no one to watch the sessions in english with me, therefore I was not able to watch a single session in English. I understood everything, but the monotone of a brazilian translator is just not the same as hearing the voices of the apostles and prophet. We have a family that we are teaching that ended up going to the first saturday session and they loved the talks. We have been talking to them very seriously about getting married so that they can be baptized, and they accepted. They have been taught by elders in the past, but since they werent married they couldnt get baptized and stopped going to church. All we had to do was teach and speak with authority and commit them to marriage and baptism. They are hoping to be able to get married by the end of this month or beg. of sept. (the paperwork and wait time involved in a marriage here in Santa Maria is horrendous.) Unfortunately they were the only investigators of ours that made it to conference. The elections for local government offices here got in the way quite a bit. Obligatory voting occured on SUNDAY and each person has to return to the city they were born in order to vote and so many people used the voting as an excuse not to go to the conference and many people were simply out of town. Elections here is something ridiculous those elected are sometimes just as ridiculous, probably resulting from the forced voting (if you dont vote you get a heavy fine).
That is really too bad with Tori and Bryan, but im sure she will be fine. It is a good thing that the family was one of the big subjects of the conference. Also Tell Katelyn to write me and tell me about how things are going. It has been a while that she has written to me. Thats funny that she is dating though. She´ll be married soon.
As for needs in the Christmas package I dont think I really have any at the moment. maybe one more pair of pants, because I have one that is getting close to the end of its life (one of the pair I got from Jase) as for that everything else is holding up pretty well. I will see if theere is anything else I need and if so I will be sure to tell you. My shoes are still holding up well. I will hve to get them resoled here in 2 or 3 months but after that they should at least last another 2 or 3. The ones I use for meetings still look new though, so if the ones I use everyday somehow get destroyed I will use those and maybe buy a pair of those electricians shoes. They are pretty cheap and good for a lot of walking. My eccos are a size 44.
The work here is going well. WE have finally been able to establish a good stable teaching group and wwe are working with some really awesome people. The hardest thing here is just to find people that have enough drive to go to church and to eventually stay firm in the church. Many people claim that our coming to thier door was a sign from God because they were praying to have someone respont a certain question they had or to show them the true church and that they receive answeres to thier prayers about the Book of Mormon but then do NOTHING about those magnificent signs they have recieved.
My brazilian companion is doing great, and he would like you to send a recipe for Chocolate chip cookies so that we can make some next p-day. He is learning a ton and I think he is already ready to be senior companion. Things here have been going good though and we have been trying harder to use the Book of Mormon more in our day to day work to demonstrate the power that it has.

Anyway I love you and hope you are doing well!

-Elder Eskildsen

August in Santa Maria

August 2012      Well to answer your last question frist, the next transfer date is today, and well, I was transferred to Santa Maria to be in the Santa Marta zone. Im a bit excited but I really wanted to stay here in Ijuí to help all of the awesome people we have met get baptized. But I know that Elder Glazier will do well here without me. That little trip to the lake house sounded like a lot of fun, but thats too bad that you left your books and stuff. Just study as best you can the material really gets easier the more you go. Theres also one more thing I would like in that package if it is not too much. It is a book by Truman G. Madsen Called ´´Joseph Smith the Prophet´´. I would like to have that if it is at all possible. They have it in paperback. Dont get it confused with ´´The life and teachings of Joseph Smith´´, by the same author. Your talk looks pretty good as well, I wish I could have been there to hear it. But I sent most of the stuff about the week in an email to Rachel, so you can read that one, sorry! Im kind of pressed for time. But oh, I am so happy for Brant! He is going to LOVE serving in the states. It may not seem as exotic or as cool serving in the US but there are many many elders who would like to have the nice and cushy life in a stateside mission haha. But I can deal without AC for the next little bit. But also he is going to love being a missionary and everything. Also I want his adress ASAP. I love you and hope you are having a great week!

-Elder Eskildsen

Aug 20,   Dear Family,

Yes I have been called as a district leader. It may sounds glamorous and all, but really it is just a bit of extra work. I do like it though, but it is a bit annoying having to not only deal with the free agency of investigators, but also with that of the missionaries. It hasnt been too bad though, just a little bit more stressful. I wanted to see Sister Taylor before she headed back for the US but it seems that she snuck out of the Casa Grande a few hours before I got there. She also was a great missionary here, and was always one of President Ribeiro´s most reliable sister missionaries. Thats what a lot of missionaries said about her here on the mission. Yea the Brazilians cant pronounce my name, but its all good, because it makes it easy to identify the people who like me a lot (because they actually take the time to learn how to say my name,). It´s so nice to hear stories like that of Ashley and the Brownings to be able to demonstrate that when the church works the way it is supposed to and the members really embrace the less acitves and the investigators, miracles are sure to happen. Even just knowing that paperwork and the members records, is working in some areas is quite refreshing to me. I have seen too many people who have been baptized, shortly thereafter gone inactive, and moved away and no one knows who they are or where they live, therefore making them just a name on a piece of paper and essentially nonexistant in terms on church membership. Order is good.

One thing I am really excited for when I get back is to go to the temple again. Not having one here in the mission is really sad and makes me miss going to the temple.

Thats so awesome that Chelsea is going to Resistência! Im super excited for her, but it would have been cooler if she were to be going to this mission here. But even then maybe she will pass in Passo De Los Libres just like uncle sam, and then be able to see one of the cities I served in from across the bridge!

This week has been pretty good, but was a bit difficult as well. We have been putting into practice Presidents council of Challenging everyone to baptizm in the 1st lesson, and several people accepted a date etc, but many of the people that accepted the baptizmal date werent home for the second lesson that we scheduled (which actually happens alot here because even if your mark for the next day people generally forget). We will have to really work hard to find all of those same people again so that we will be able to accompany them well and get them integrated into the ward and a testimony of the church. One thing that really suriprises me here is how quickly and easily people claim to have received an answer from God to thier prayers. sometimes people claim a testimony out of the fervor of the moment and other times people just dont want to say that they havent received an answer, yet many times they have genuinly been answered. We brought Moisés a young man of 16 to the stake conference yesterday, but his mom didnt end up being able to (or disposed to go) which is disappointing, because we arent going to baptize moisés if his mom doesnt get baptized with him. Other than that it has been getting hotter here and rainy and overcast, which I personally like. Other than that the week was pretty normal, and I dont beleive that I have anything else to say. Next week I will think more about what I will write so that I can send a more descriptive email. Maybe I will send a voice recording as well. Well I love you and hope you are all doing well!

-Elder Eskildsen

Oh and the adress will be this:

Élder Eskildsen

Caixa Postal 0339

Santa Maria -RS 97010-970


Aug 27, 2012

Thats awesome! I cant beleive Garrick is already home. Time really passes by fast on the mission, and Im sure that he agrees with that. I now officially have a year on the mission and it feels like it has gone by really quick. Me and several other elders from my group got together today on p-day and went to one of the only chinese restaurants in the mission. Its not incredible cheap, but the buffet was exceptional and I got my fill of chinese food.
Its good to hear that you passed your test! and did Rachel and Bergen both pass?
I cant beleive Jake Taylor is already getting married! Is it that same girl that he was dating before his mission?
This week was kind of hectic and a lot changed. There was an emergency transfer because of some things that went wrong with some other missionaries in a different zone and they were switched out of the area they were in, and my area was affected by it. Elder Jensen went to Uruguiana to be with a brazilian companion named Elder Lourenço, and Elder Strout, who is from my group in the MTC came here to be my companion. It is kind of cool serving with someone from my own group,. President told me that I am not going to be companions with him for very long, but that in the next transfer I am going to train a new elder. Im gonna be a dad on the mission! Im pretty stoked for that, but also its risky because I have no clue who it is that I am going to be training. That made this week a bit crazy, and we lacked a day of work because my companion had to leave. We spent most of this week trying to establish a teaching group and spent a lot of time looking for new investigators. WE found quite a few of really good people, but none of them went to church because it was really cold and rainy. When it gets really cold and anytime it rains here not even most of the members go to church, so during such weeks it is really hard to get investigators to go to chruch. We had many people say that they would go to church but none of them did and I am expecting to hear the excuse of ´´it was cold/raining´´ a lot. But they can go next week. The only problem is that we will have to look for even more investigators this week and still try to balance the old ones. Things will get pretty good though this next week. I know we are going to baptize in this transfer still, we just need to work hard.
I got a letter from Chelsea today. She sent it before she got her call, but it is pretty awesome that she is going to Argentina. Did I tell you ‘Im living with an Argentinian at the moment? He is one of the LZs. I hope that everything is going well!! and I love you!


Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Transferred to Santa Maria

                                       Dane and Elder Glazier,   looking sad to being transferred
  July 30 2012  Did aunt marci say I have a lisp? haha The lisp is more of a Portugaul thing, I just dont enunciate very well. I didnt think I would miss t he olimpics too much while on the mission, but I miss it haha. and yea I took flight lessons at bergstroms. And I know what you mean about the heat in those airplanes. Its not too hot if you go up to 6000 feet or so, but staying close to the ground makes the cockpit really hot. Not to mention the hot air above the black pavement of the runway makes  the air very thin and harder to land on/in. The heat in the airplanes kind of reminds me of the houses here during the summer but cooler haha. We saw some guy flying really low over the city this last week in a Cessna 172  for a few hours and it really made me miss flying. Especially just hearing the sounds of an airplane takes me back to those days at the Pasco airport. Wow everyone is getting married... but that is really bound to happen.           We were broke last week because we all had to use all of the money in our mission accounts in order to pay for Elder X’S medical exams (which showed that there was nothing wrong with him). He claimed foot problems, but the expensive and excessive MRI called his bluff. He has been causing a lot more work for President than he needs, and as a result he was emergency transferred to Santa Maria and we received another new elder from that same group. His name is Elder Saunders. He is a farm boy from eastern Oregon. A little city called Vale. Ive never heard of it, but it is smaller than Connell.

        And no I did not say that I was 145 I said that I was 175 when I started and now I am 185. You think I was THAT skinny when I left for the mission? Is my accent that hard to understand on the voice recording? haha. I have another voice recording and if  you have any questions just ask, becasue sometimes I talk about stuff without elaborating,and I can imagine it might be hard to follow without being properly informed about certain things. I also am not very good about remembering things in the week without being questioned, or having my memory jogged. You will probably hear about many parts of the mission after I get back because I am so bad at remembering details during email time. But any way , Iove you and hope  your week has been awesome.

Dad,---That sounds like it was a  good 5th sunday lesson. And yes I am familiar with the karate kid, notwithstanding my lack of age and wisdom. It is very true that we must be obedient as a result for our love and gratitude towards God, instead of following a commandment because of the temporal blessing or consequence. For example, most people will not follow the Word of Wisdom just because you tell them that it is a commandment of God. What people want and expect is some sort of temporal incentive. The fact is, it doesnt matter whether studies show that a cup of coffee a day is good for your health, or that a cup of wine per day betters heart health. What matters is that our abstaining from those substances is something that God requires of us. Sometimes we must do things that we dont understand fully because they are commandments of the Lord. Nothing (from God) that is required of us will not lead to our well being. It is easy to rationalize our deviance from a commandment because our lack of understanding of it, but I know that if we follow the orders of the Lord we will be blessed. This last week we found out that we are no longer allowed to have MP3 devices, Ipods Etc. As devastating that is to me, I know that I must comply, so I had to say goodbye to my Ipod until August of next year.

AUG 5, 2012 Well to answer your last question first the next transfer date is today, and well, I was transferred to Santa Maria to be in the Santa Marta zone. Im a bit excited but I really wanted to stay here in Ijuí to help all of the awesome people we have met get baptized. But I know that Elder Glazier will do well here without me. That little trip to the lake house sounded like a lot of fun, but thats too bad that you left your books and stuff. Just study as best you can the material really gets easier the more you go. Theres also one more thing I would like in that package if it is not too much. It is a book by Truman G. Madsen Called ´´Joseph Smith the Prophet´´. I would like to have that if it is at all possible. They have it in paperback. Dont get it confused with ´´The life and teachings of Joseph Smith´´, by the same author. Your talk looks pretty good as well, I wish I could have been there to hear it. But I sent most of the stuff about the week in an email to Rachel, so you can read that one, sorry! Im kind of pressed for time. But oh, I am so happy for Brant! He is going to LOVE serving in the states. It may not seem as exotic or as cool serving in the US but there are many many elders who would like to have the nice and cushy life in a stateside mission haha. But I can deal without AC for the next little bit. But also he is going to love being a missionary and everything. Also I want his adress ASAP
  Aug 13, 2012  Dear Dad,----Thats good to get a new family in the ward, to help strengthen things up and get some new candidates for the church callings. That investigator sounds like she is pretty golden, which means that she is the kind of investigator that every missionary wants to have. I have met a few investigators like that. She seems to really have a broken heart and a contrite spirit and has real intent as it says in Moroni 10:4. Im sure the Elders are super Excited with that family. Hows the rest of the ward doing? My new ward in the mission is one of the best in the mission! there are about 150 active members that comprehend clearly the gospel and all of its principles and how the church is supposed to work. The bishop here is really awesome as well and the ward members and ward mision leader have already helped us a ton. Im really excited to be here in the  Santa Marta ward and hope that I will be here for much much more time. Thats very probable. We are also working with a part member/less active family at the moment.  It has been many many years since the mom was baptised. She came to church yesterday and really liked it, so did her son. She is almost like a nonmember because she doesnt remember anything about the church so we have to teach her everything all over again. This gospel is truly marvelous. It was no joke when Joseph Smith was told that a marvelous work and a wonder was about to come forth. I love being here serving the lord, although it is a bit difficult.
      Dear Mom,I know how you feel, my week was also quite rushed and difficult. Right when I got into Santa Maria we had to head out to teach lessons, etc. My companion is a fairly newbie american and so he didnt really know what was going on or much about the ward, investigators, etc, but we found our way around pretty well. Because my companion is not familiar with the availability of the inveswtgators/ members and such we were running around the area quite a bit, but we ended up being able to get a lot of lessons in. To add to that I have to worry about the rest of my district and how they are doing etc, so I had to call and advise them every once in a while to make sure that they are doing well. I went to bed everynight thinking about how I can help my district and our investigators etc and woke up thinking about the same thing. Lots to think about here on the mission , but it isnt too bad. Im really excited to be able to fly the Cherokee. And does this mean that I will be able to take the Citabria up to BYU with me after I get current on my liscence? Im sure you will do fine on your test, but make sure you study and fly a ton, because if not it gets really annoying trying to get the liscence with a due date.  like I had to do before the mission.   Do you think that Kortney is going to end up getting married to that guy? Tell her to wait until at least august 13 of next year to get married.   I might actually wear Red skinny jeans. Well burgundy probably, I think red is a little too conspicuous. And I wouldnt fit into skinny jeans so it would have to be regular looking jeans for a normal person that would fit me like skinny jeans.    Santa Maria is awesome and I am really liking it a ton. It is the biggest city on our mission with 300,000 people or so. The ward, like I said is really awesome here and this is always an area that the Elders want to pass through. There wernt a ton of investigators when I got here and we lost a few more because we challenged them to baptism and they refused, and of course, when that happens he have to stop visiting them, at least for the moment. We do have some pretty good people that we are working with though. My companion is Elder Jensen, he is from California and has like 3 months on the mission. He has a bit of trouble with the language, but he is learning very quickly. Well I hope that you are all well and I love you! -Elder Eskildsen     p.s. I am opening a P.O. box for my district here in a few days, so if you want to send me anything wait until next monday and I will tell the new adress. Thanks
                                                           Santa Maria as seen from my area
                                                    New companion Elder Jensen from CA