Tuesday, August 20, 2013

August 20, 2013

Mom (and everyone else),
I only have a week left at the MTC! A week from today, I will be flying down to Santa Cruz, Bolivia to stay there for the next twenty two and a half months. Its such a cool feeling. I thought I would be fluent by the time I left the MTC, but that's just my over confident side kicking in (it does that a lot).  I still know SO much more than I did when I arrived, so I'm not worried at all. Honestly, I couldn't be less worried about not knowing Spanish haha, I know enough to understand what people are saying, and I can teach a little, and most importantly, I can bear my testimony. And that's all I need. The language thing here is all a mindset: if you let it freak you out, it will. But if you have the "I'm over it" attitude, and understand that you will get the language down eventually, your worries go away. And mine have. 

I get to go to the temple today, perhaps for the last time in two years. Hopefully not, but I'm really gonna soak it in. Going to the temple is so awesome, there's not place on Earth that compares to the temple. I never understood that. You know whats crazy? I miss Boston just as much as I miss home! Laying in bed last night, I was just thinking about how lucky and blessed I am to have been able to go there, to have lived on my own, and made the friends that I had. I'm so lucky that I was in the ward that I was in, and that I had the experiences that I had. Some Elders here aren't ready to be on their own because they just graduated high school and have never been away from home this long, but its so easy for me! Don't misunderstand, I miss home, and my family, and friends, and California, but its minimal, it doesn't stop me from working hard, and I don't dwell on it. Aside from the limitless Spiritual blessings that one receives from going on a mission, there are many physical and emotional blessings.  Many, almost all, the people I know in the US wouldn't be willing to put their iPhone and MacBook away for two years, and wake up at six thirty EVERY morning, and when I say every morning, I mean not a single morning in the entire two years do you sleep longer than that. Almost no one would be willing to give up those comforts, but the only night that was tough for me to give up those things, was when those things were available to me, but I couldn't use them because I had to follow mission rules, the night I was set apart. It feels good to not have all those things, and it will probably feel pretty good getting them back haha, I will be so much more grateful for all those things that we all take for granted. 

So we get along really well with the Latino Elders here, and we become really good friends with every two week transfer that comes in. Last transfer, we taught them how to say "Get that corn outta my face!" from Nacho Libre, which was obviously hilarious. We taught our teacher how to say "Obvi" which is also hilarious haha. Hey Kaddy, you know how you always say "Rico SuavĂ©"? Well "suave" actually means soft and smooth, and so when people are speaking Spanish, describing how the Spirit feels in your heart, they say that it is suavĂ©, and it makes me think of you every time haha. 

I have a teacher here, named Hermano Bejar, (Hermano is Brother), and he went on his mission to Guatemala, and I think he and I figured out that he left the MTC there one month before President Stimle arrived. So close! And he served around Lake Atitlan, like in Santiago and stuff. I'm sure mom remembers all those places. No one has a memory like Diane Wilkinson. It's really gonna be tough saying goodbye to my friends here, and the comfort of living a semi-American lifestyle haha. A week from today, its shacks and cots for me for quite awhile haha. But I couldn't be more excited. I'm not afraid of anything out here, because there is nothing to be afraid of. It's so exciting! There is a phrase we use in my district, which goes "Let the humbling begin!" and we usually say it before we go proselyting, because those are the moments we realize how little we know, and those are the times when we get discouraged, and so we came up with a catch phrase for it haha, Let the humbling begin! That isn't a bad thing though, the Lord teaches us some of the most important lessons in life shortly after He has humbled the heck out of us. 

So I don't know why anyone hasn't said anything about it, but am I an uncle yet? Is my sister a mother? Are my parents grandparents? I bought my little nephew a tie with the Lima temple on it, and a tiny little missionary name tag that says "Future Missionary", and I want pictures of him in them when I get them to you guys. 

Young Coconut. I'm not asking anyone for them, but if you sent me some, I would probably cry tears of joy. 

The weather has been so nice the past few days, probably like 73 degrees, completely sunny, and slightly breezy. Some days it is quite cold though. Not what I expected Peru to be like. Today, I'm shopping for the last time in Peru, for awhile, at least. Until we come back as a family a couple months after I go home. 

Hey Kaddy, quick question, and email me when you get the answer to this question, but is DearElder free? [YES, IT IS FREE] And can you send DearElders to missions too? [YES, YOU CAN SEND LETTERS TO THE MISSION] Thanks! I ran out of clean T shirts, so today I'm walking around in my shower sandals, some grey shorts, and a long sleeved collared white shirt with my name tag on it haha, business casual for the win. I got your package from Sister Goodfellow, thank you so much for sending that. That made my day. I opened it at the lunch table, and my whole district was swarmed around wanting to see what was in it and what everything was. It was as if you had sent my district a package, and we all got to enjoy it. And we are all gonna try to bacon toothpaste that you sent me, maybe tonight. For everyone reading this, if you are interested in writing me, I love pictures. Like of us. Pictures are the bomb. Just sayin. Every night when they read out names over the intercom of people who have gotten letters, we all listen anxiously to see if we got one haha, its so funny. I had no idea how much missionaries love letters. 

Ok, I gotta go now, but thanks to all of you who have been praying for me, and thinking about me. Quick story, whenever a missionaries name tag is starting to slide up out of his pocket, its said that someone is thinking about him. And either I'm a messy missionary, or some of y'all's been thinkin' bout me. Probably the first one, but that's okay! Haha anyway, I love you all, thank you, Mom and Dad, Tess and Kathryn, for all you do. ¡Buenos dias!
Elder Wilkinson

Just a quick reminder to all of Elder Wilkinson's friends and family, send him letters through DearElder so he has time to read them during the week! There's a tutorial here that shows you how to do it. It is totally free to send letters to him this way. 

Sunday, August 18, 2013

August 13, 2013, plus pictures!

Hey mom,
I've been thinking and praying about Tess all week, I'm so excited for her! You guys will have to send me pictures of my little nephew, I'm so excited to meet him! In two years haha. 

Mom I'm so glad you mentioned Abinidi, because he is by far my favorite Libro de Mormon prophet right now. I was thinking he would be such an amazing lawyer, he completely owns and stumps King Noah and all his priests. It's like his words slapped them all in the face haha. I'll try again with the pictures this week. I'm gonna be totally honest with you, I was super depressed last Tuesday, because I sent such a short message and the pictures didn't work, and I remembered how you said you would cry if my letters sucked, and I was so worried because of that haha, but all this week I kept a flashcard in my shirt pocket with things I want to tell you all about, and of course, I forgot to bring it with me to the computer lab haha, but I'll bring it next week. 

Last Tuesday, some Elders in my district and I found a guitar shop and just played and sang together for like an hour. I didn't know how much I missed it until I did it, my calluses are coming off which is so depressing haha, but it's well worth it. I can regain them. Today we went to the temple for the first time in two weeks, because it was closed, and we were all so glad when we heard it was open again because there is such a sweet, peaceful spirit there that I didn't fully realize until today. 

I don't know if I told you, but the churros from the street venders here are celestial. I had three today, and they're huge haha. We went proselyting again on Saturday, and this time was totally different. Instead of pairing us up with Latino companions for the day, they sent me and Elder Bradshaw together, which was so scary, being two tall gringos who don't know any Spanish going out into Lima. But fortunately, last minute, they gave us a member from this area that obviously speaks Spanish. But he just stood behind us and only jumped in if we were crashing hard with the contact. I made a catch phrase for that day, and I hereby establish it as the catch phrase of my mission. It goes "Sin miedo!", which means "without fear", because it gave us courage to approach people even though we don't know Spanish. Let me tell you what is scary, walking up to somebody you don't know, in a place you don't know, not being able to speak their language, yet being expected to tell them about Christ. Its amazing, in the true sense of the word. 

So the first door we knocked on, this lady opened up a tiny little square in the door that she talked out of. I don't know if it's for safety or just for making whoever is at her door feel like she hates them. But we were talking to here, asking if she believes in Christ, and her kids pop out of the window, which has no glass, and scream, "Mam! Ustedes hablan ingles!" They were so excited to see white people, that the mom let us in, and we taught her and her three kids and her mother about what Christ did for them, which not many people fully understand, including myself. We taught her about John chapter 10 verse 16 talks about the people here in the Americas, the people that fill the Libro de Mormon. As we were teaching, the littlest kid, Juan Diego, started pulling my arm and playing with my watch. So after he nearly removed all of the hair on my arm, I took off my watch, knelt down by him, and put the watch on his wrist. He was seriously amazed, like more amazement that I've ever seen haha, it was so funny. And when we finished teaching them, and after they agreed to have the missionaries over again, he gave it back to me and we left. 

There were other people who hated that we were at their door. I had my first doors slammed in my face on Saturday. But it literally didn't discourage me at all. We walked up to a door that had a sticker that said, in Spanish, "We are Catholic, please respect our religion," and so we knocked on that door, with the intent of not disrespecting or changing their religious beliefs, but with completing it haha. And they didn't answer. People like us young white boys though, even if they aren't interested. People stare at us. I'm gonna try pictures now! Thanks for everything you do mom, and thank you everybody for your prayers! They mean more than I ever knew a prayer could! 

Hasta luego!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

How to send Elder Wilkinson a letter using

Because of the strictly limited computer time Elder Wilkinson has, he has asked that his friends send him actual mail or mail through

He only gets 30 minutes of computer time each week, so if he has to spend all his computer time reading the emails he gets, he won't have any time left to reply. If you send him a letter through snail mail or DearElder, he'll receive the written letter in advance, have time to read it, and will have more time to respond to everyone.

So here are some directions on how to send him a letter through If you would like to type and send a letter through traditional mail, you can find his mailing information here.

1. Go to
2. Click "Write a Letter" at the top of the page.
3. Select Peru MTC under "Letter Selection" if it is before August 7th, 2013. If it is after that date, select Bolivia Santa Cruz (NOT Bolivia Santa Cruz North).
4. Follow the directions in the image below following the red arrows.

He loves the encouragement, so send him letters letting him know you're praying for him and you love him!