Elder Andrew D. Cook entered the MTC on January 15, 2014. I am excited to update as I know how he is doing, especially posting his mass emails.

Writing & Shipping information is found in the right hand column.

There is also a link to a few different translators to help us guess what Andrew said. :D Sometimes I get a better idea when I remove his ! from a word.

Monday, October 12, 2015


Reference referred to in this letter: 

D&C 4:4 For behold the field is white already to harvest; and lo, he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that he perisheth not, but bringeth salvation to his soul;

Okay, so I didn't have time to finish writing out my week, so I will now continue from here. please read the attachment first.

Here's where I left off.
Sunday morning, I was awestruck, Sunday afternoon I was enlightened.

Then SUPRISE! my companion books it. as in, he hopped a bus without telling anyone. Conference was held in San Fernando, Balaoan in an hour north. right after morning session, he just disappears. he called the zone leaders. " Hey, I'm on my way to Balaoan. I forgot my bag. could you please give it to Elder Cook."
He was with Elder "The King" Wilson. This is one tough customer. This kid is an Ex-gang, covered in tatoos, and the assistants are scared of him. He's been in Sudipen (next city north of Balaoan) for 8 months because the Ap's said he was transferring, and he said "no."

So he got very angry angry with his companion, and kidnapped mine.

I was then put for the day with the district leader and his greeny. (Elder Wilson's 2 companions) I had a GREAT time. It was super weird being on exchanges on a Sunday. But here's the reason it was so great:
after work it seemed like I was going to have to sleep in Sudipen. I was not so much looking forward to this. since all three of us just transferred in, and it wasn't my house. we had no groceries, bale no dinner. 
but we started talking and I mentioned a talk I just read about how some missionaries held their own testimony meeting, in their appartment. I mentioned how I would love to be in their house, but I didn't think there was anyone in our mission who would be down for that kind of Spirit. you would just get made fun of "oh! you want to be a prophet do you?" suddenly I realised something. I was with two other Elders who would be down. It was a good feeling. one Elder gave me a letter to read. It's called the Ricciardi letter. It was quoted by President Uchtdorf in part in the talk "Fear No Man" but this was the complete letter, and I was EXCITED to read it. 

I settled down to read, because I thought I was going to be sleeping over in Sudipen. it's 21 pages long, but incredible inspiring. The Spirit testified that there is a reason I was there in Sudipen that night. the second I finished the last page, and I mean the very second, Elder Wilson bursts in to the room. "I decided to sleep here tonight, so I can go to the gym tomorrow." Elder Castillo walks in smiling. and we go home. I was happy to be going home again. after reading this letter, and listening to conference, I was overflowing with the Spirit, I testified to the tricycle driver the whole way home, and I couldn't wipe the smile off my face.

now lets get back to ponderizing. I want to explain why I chose this verse.
Elder Ricciardi shared an interesting perspective on this verse. "The field is white already to harvest. not brown ready to plant. not yellow ready to water. If you are not harvesting, you are not finding the Elect of God, who hear His voice. you are not fulfilling your call. It's not my call to plant.
The next thought is my own, but I don't remember thinking it. I checked my copy of the D&C. I had a single word underlined. "the field is white already to harvest, and lo he that thrusteth in his sickle with his might, the same layeth up in store that he perisheth not at the last day, but bringeth salvation to his soul."
after all we do there is one person we are laying up for. our own salvation. the more we forget our selves, and help others, the more we save our own neck. it's a beautiful paradox.

I have a small statue of the last supper, on my desk, and I put my verse in Christ's arms. what's your verse? let's hold each other accountable :D\


(from another email)

the first two are my old area, the last is my new. big difference no?

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

10-5-2015 mass, not so mass, and a story from mom

To save time by explaining the whole story, I was being hunted down by the orc overlord, but His right hand man turned on him and saved our necks! Truth Conquers All!
This week was SUUUUPER productive! we have 3 potential baptisms, all three came to church, and one of them even paid her fast offering. woo!
Not much other wise to report , I will be transferring Thursday to train, but I still don't know where I'm going! whew! adventure!

Note from mom: This is what Andrew sent. Luckily I realized it was a game reference. It had to do with some drama he was experiencing with his mission. All cleared up! Whew!

This next part wasn't a part of his mass to anyone but rather a fun thing we got to share and I thought would be fun to allow you to participate in.

My children and I went to the Bean Museum at BYU. They have taxidermy animals there. I sent him a picture of what was labeled, "Philippine Duck." This is the picture we took:

This was his response:

looks NOTHING like a philipines duck. I'll get yuou a picture. aw aw!

This is the picture he sent with that response:

He then sent the following, with the subject:

i actually took this picture

Who can argue with the duck? My only response was, "Maybe your duck isn't classified as a "Philippine Duck" even though it's Filipino. Maybe the Philippine Duck lives in the southern Philippines." I hope you enjoyed our adventure in water fowl!

Thursday, October 1, 2015


We received another referral from the same family that referred BlesmeLord. Sister Janine. actually, I tried to teach her 5 months ago with Elder Anota, but it was COMPLETELY different this time!
She will be marrying the relief society president's son on October 24. (good day) and she came to church!
we taught a really really powerful lesson about covenants, and how baptism leads to celestial sealing! we discussed how the church will help her develop a personal relationship with her Savior.
we invited her to be baptized the week after the wedding, but that is a national holiday "araw ng mga patay" or "all saints' day." which is like our memorial day. In my experience this is the most celebrated holiday right up there with Easter, and Christmas.
she asked if she could be baptized the week after that. of course we said okay.

We keep having brown outs, everyday, for hours at a time! It's also been a heat wave. 
here is an unsolicited math equation: heat - electric fans =  ,:P   (that's a sweating emoticon)

have a great week everyone!