Elder Hunter Wayne Cook
Argentina Buenos Aires West Mission
C.C. No. 92
1702 Ciudadela
Buenos Aires

Elder Cook’s mission cannot receive packages from the U.S. :(

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Just another week in the sur {Week 11} (In the MTC they count half weeks so technically Week 10 1/2)

My package!!
This is package from a company based in Argentina (Missionary Packages Argentina) who helps us to be able to send packages to our LDS missionaries, since we cannot do if from the U.S. They have a limited amount of items, but we are grateful they can at least send them something!
Well where do I begin?  This week was great!  Oh Thursday, I went to the Capital (Buenos Aires City Center) to do tramites (visa stuff) and it was awesome!  It was rainy but the city reminds me of a mix of NYC and Puerto Rico.  There are a bunch of sky scrapers and it’s city like but it’s super dirty and stuff haha.  But I really love the city.  I wish that it was in my mission.  I think it’s split up between BA North and BA East.  So I won’t get to go there again ever probably... but I envy the north and east missions because it’s the most "american" you can get in Argentina!  haha I actually saw a TGI Fridays as we were driving!  Thursday was just a great day!  The Johnson’s (a missionary couple) came and basically brought us Christmas!!  I got a NEW BIKE!!  And we also go NEW MATTRESSES!  I was super excited!!  My bike was breaking down every day almost and the mission just got a couple new bikes so somehow I got one!  Super lucky... my comp didn’t haha.  He’s stuck with the old rusty one still...  
I made cheesy potatoes!!  I felt like I was at home!!

Yummy sandwich!

This week was pretty interesting though... it was super rainy but not as cold as before... I think that it's starting to warm up!  In Argentina they have what’s called "alfajors”.  Oh my goodness I'm addicted.  I have to have one every day or I have withdrawals.  haha They are actually not that good..I tried one in the states before I left and they were just alright.. it’s kinda like a cookie thing.  (Family, they are the things that Elder Wiggins gave us try.)
From cleaning our oven window...

I forgot to write down what I wanted to talk about this week soI guess I'll just talk about what’s coming up this weekend...


Seriously I have never been more excited for it in my entire life because I get to hear it in English!  I miss English haha.  But anyways I challenge everyone to watch every session and every talk!  And start with a question... I like to fast during conference about my question.  It seriously makes the world of difference!  Before it was really hard for me to pay attention, especially for 10 hours, but when I fasted I was able to be attentive to every talk!!  So if you guys could do that, I know that it will help you!  A prophet of God is literally going to speak to us.  The prophets words are the Lords words (D&C 1:37).  What would you do if you knew that this weekend Christ was coming to speak to you?  To answer your questions?  Would you go?  Would you listen carefully? Maybe take notes?  Well that is what is happening.  The voice of the lord will be heard this weekend.  Are you going to be there to hear it?  So, that is my challenge. Seriously take advantage of this opportunity!!
Walking in the rain
Elder Cook wearing the tie that I (his sister) crocheted for him.  He wore it on my birthday and sent me this picture!! :)

Love you all.. sorry it’s really short this week... I don’t have much time!

Elder Cook

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

BUENAS! {Week 9}

Hola!  ¿Como le va?  This week was another great week in Argentina!!  The Lord has blessed us with so many miracles here in Parque Leloir.  We have found so many new investigators that want to learn more about the gospel!  I learn so much every week about so many different things.  This is such a help for my life!  I’ve learned so much about how people work and the purpose of life.  I can’t really put into words what I’m trying to say so sorry hahaha, but I just know that the mission is teaching me so many life lessons.  One lesson that me and my comp were talking about this morning is about the purpose of trials.  I have always been taught that trials are what makes us stronger, but seriously it’s so true!  In every part of our lives there are different walls that we have in front of us and we have 2 options; climb it and get to higher ground, or be stuck where you are not able to progress further.  The first option is of course the best, but it’s also the hardest... but that’s why it makes it the best!!  Through climbing and trying to make it to the top we are strengthened.  We could never accomplish anything if everything in life was easy.  What would be the point?  
This our friend we named Teddy!  He always follows us around, he wants to be a missionary!
I have also gained such a strong testimony of the power of PRAYER!  I feel like at times we may overlook this simple act.  Through prayer we are literally in contact with the most powerful being in the universe.  We can talk to Him wherever we are and whenever we want about whatever, because He is ALWAYS THERE!  He wants to hear from us and wants to help us, but we have to ask!  It’s the greatest lifeline we could possibly have.  He is the greatest counselor, greatest listener, and greatest advice giver we could ever possibly have!!  Prayer is such a powerful and great gift that at least I feel like I take for granted at some times.  Just think about it!  Think about how great and powerful a tool it really is!  
I found BBQ sauce!!
Here in Argentina "la lucha es real" The struggle is real haha.  It’s really sad.  Everyone here basically has nothing!  They would do anything to come to America.  Every house or building that I’ve been into is seriously either a concrete box or I don’t even know how to describe it.  It’s super sad.  It has been such a huge testimony builder to me on how important an education really is.  Here no one goes to school.  The government has tried to make it as easy as they possibly can for people to graduate from high school.  It’s only like 3 hours long and super easy and if you just go you can pass.  But people DONT GET IT!  They don’t care!  It’s just a huge cycle of poverty.  All the men work in construction because they didn’t want to go to school so they dropped out and started working with their cousin pouring concrete, and they do this for the rest of their life.  And all of the women clean all the rich peoples' houses.  There are a few select people who care and get an education and they have the big houses and the poor people build them and clean them.  It’s just super sad and frustrating because that’s the lives of the parents and they just let their kids do the exact same cycle and don’t teach them about the importance of an education.  There are so many members in our ward that went back and are going to high school right now and they’re like 45.  Also, they pay for you if you want to go to college.  No scholarships or anything.  The government pays because they want their people to be educated, but no one does it because they don’t want too!  SO FRUSTRATING! 
So I decided to make a cucumber salad cause we don't have anything to eat and I'm trying to be creative.  It's just cucumbers with vinegar, salt, and pepper! haha
Also, there are so many people who are ready to be baptized and have testimonies and really want too, but people don’t get married here!!!  Like NO ONE!  80% or more probaby have been together for 10 plus years with 4 kids and they have never thought about getting married and they don’t want too!  We call it “juntado”.  It’s super frustrating and no one will get marrried so they can’t get baptized!
Anyways, sorry I kinda went on a huge tangent today…  haha.  Oh, also I got bit by a dog this week!  haha.  That’s another thing, each family has 3-5 dogs and then there’s double that, that are homeless and roam the streets!  It’s super sad because I feel like I’m in one of those sad animal abuse advertisements because all the dogs are starving and injured and missing eyes and legs and things.  It’s super sad!!
Here's where the dog bit me.  The wound is lower and NOT in the picture, but yes I was bleeding.
Anyways, love you all!! I hope you have an awesome week!  And don’t forget to pray!

Elder Cook

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Week 3 in Argentina? {Week 8}

Hello family and friends.  Okay so this week was soooooooooo cold!!! Like I felt like I was in Utah in the winter time!!  It’s still offically winter here until the end of the month I think.  But on Wednesday there was a huge rain storm and it rained allllllll day!!!  No bueno!  Wednesday was just a hard day in general.  All of our citas (planned visits) fell thru.  Every house that we went to either forgot and couldn’t meet with us anymore or weren’t there!  Argentines don’t like to go out in the rain, so everyone was in their houses, but no one would let us in because that would mean they would have to come out in the rain and open their gate.  Haha so we basically wandered around in the freezing rain all day soaked, clapping houses that wouldn’t take us.  One recent convert finally let us in to teach and after I walked out I remember feeling like I have never been so cold in my entire life!!  I was soaked and FREEZING!  Out of all the times I’ve been freezing in the mountains in Utah in the snow, this definitely topped it haha.  It was horrible!!  So we decided to stop by the pench to get more layers.  I took off all of my wet stuff and put on 6 layers.  I looked in the mirror and looked like I was a missionary in Russia.  haha I had my giant military boots on too!  But after that I didnt freeze!! 
When I was freezing in our Pench in the morning...Yes those are sweatpants haha
This is the day it was super rainy!!
Thursday was almost just as bad.  Actually it’s probably the worst day I’ve had yet.  Not because it was cold, but because I was sick.  I felt like I was going to puke the whole day and I had a migraine!  It was also cold, but luckily it wasn’t raining.  Thursday I also got to give my first blessing in Spanish!  It was actually just the anointing part, but it was hard for me.  Spanish is so difficult for me right now haha.  
This family was just baptized in August!!  I love them so much!  They are amazing!  Sorry it's blurry
Basically, the first of our week was super tough, and we were tired a lot.  But it all payed off for all the miracles that happened over the weekend.  So Thursday was super hard for me, but Friday we went out and the first house we went to, a man came out crying.  He was very upset because his wife just died a week earlier.  It was super sad.  Me and my comp made it a goal to look at every person as God would.  Before we clap the door, we look at each other and say “How would God see this person?"  This has made us have so much more love for the people that we come into contact with.  Because we did this, when the man came out, we were able to have a huge amount of love and understanding for him.  We shared our testimonies and talked to him a little about the plan of salvation.  He was bawling and so was I.  The spirit was SO STRONG!!  When we left he said thanks a 1000 chicos, I feel at peace now.  We made a cita to come back to visit him and he was super excited.  He just kept thanking us.  At that point I told myself that all the stuggles that I just had at the first of the week, all of them were worth it to be able to help that one man.  I know that we have to experience the bad so that we can experience the good.  I have a strong testimony of that.  The Lord tested and tried us, but since we kept persevering, he blessed us to be able to help one of his children.  
Our chains ALWAYS fall off!!
Okay, so everyone has been asking me about Argentina.  Well where do I start? haha It is cold, smelly, dirty, and flat (there are no mountains anywhere, not even hills) but it’s starting to grow on me.  Oh and there are dogs EVERYWHERE!!!  I can’t even explain it and they are all dirty and homeless dogs too.  I haven’t had any bite me yet but they always chase us on our bikes haha.  The food is good, but it’s seriously sooooooo bland!!  Last Monday I kinda had a break down in the grocery store because there’s no food here!!  haha Nothing that I know how to make!!  haha So me and my comp usually starve or eat ramen, noodles, or rice.  That’s all that they have here that we know how to make haha and all the food is SUPER BLAND!  They don’t really have sauces here.  Only Mayo and I hate mayo.  But there’s nothing gross that I’ve eaten here.  It’s all good, just super plain.
Just some houses...if you can see, there are fences around everyone's house..that's why we have to clap 
Their so called PIZZA...just tastes like bread haha
Well I dont have much time, I’ll try and send pics this week! 

Love you all!

Elder Cook

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Week 2 In Argentina {Week 7}

Well, wow days are flying!!!  I don’t have much time again.. haha and the computer that I’m using is soooooooo slow, so I might not be able to send pictures… I’m sorry!!

This week was great!  I’ll tell you about an investigator that we have.. So we clapped this door (you clap, not knock cuz there is fences around everyone’s house) and this lady came out named Micalea.  She let us in and we started teaching her.  Her mom was also there and she was super anti!  Like hard core atheist.  She just kept interrupting our lessons by challenging our beliefs.. and they were dumb questions too, like the first one was,”How do you know Joseph Smith even existed?” haha.  We were like well... he has a grave with a head stone.. like he was a real person haha.  But anyways she was just sucking the Spirit out of the room and the lesson.  We came back 2 days later and she was there again.  Oh and I forgot to say we called her Satan lady haha.  But anyways we walked in and we were like, "Oh great!”  But we started teaching and she started to actually listen.  We thought that it was a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT person!!  My companion asked her if she had a twin.  Like she was actually interested!  We had a great lesson!  Then we came back for a thrid lesson and Micalea had to get ready for work so we just taught her mom.  She was like the best investigator!  The Spirit was so strong and she had such a desire to learn and to know!!!  Like her heart was softened within 3 times of visiting with her!! I’m super excited for her!  She went from being Satan lady to one of our top investigators!  It’s a huge testimony that anyone can change and God can soften peoples hearts.

We had a lot of stuggles this week!  Our bikes broke down a bunch so we took them to get fixed, paid 800 pesos and the next day they broke again!!!!  We had a rough day of trying to figure out our bike situation and get to our appointments on time because our area is huge!!  But they got fixed again so I hope all is well now!

The members here are so awesome!!  I love them so much!!  And the food is super good!!  Except here in Argentina they dont have flavor!!  Everything is soooooo blanddddd!!  Even salt.  Like in the scripture that talks about the salt that loses it’s savor.  Yep! That’s the salt here! 

The hardest thing about this is Spanish!!!  It's super frustrating not to be able to talk... I feel like I'm sloooooowwwly progressing...

We see miracles everday.  This week was probably the hardest week for me since I left and I felt like I wasn’t even making a difference.  I felt like I wasn’t helping anyone.  Mostly because I can’t speak or understand, so I can’t share my feelings with our investigators.  Then I was sitting in church and I remembered why I came here.  I remembered my favorite scripture, “ The worth of souls is great in the sight of God."  I knew that my efforts may produce small results but I knew that no matter if my whole mission I could only help one soul, that all would be well because I know that EVERY soul is GREAT in the sight of God!! 

Something that I’ve learned is that we need to be relying upon the Savior DAILY!!  There are 3 things that if we will do them we are promised blessings.  We call it OLA, orar leer y ir a la iglesia.  Pray, Read and Go to Church!   When we do theses things we can be fortified and strengthened to meet any challenge we may face!!! 

Well I have so much more to say but I don’t have time!!!  Sorry!  Love you!  I hope the pictures will work, if not sorry!


1.  Did you get your visa?  I got a tourist visa right now,  but I have to go to the capital in the next couple of weeks to get my regular one…
2.  What is your typical day like?  So we wake up, exercise, eat, get ready, one hour of personal study, one hour of comp study, one hour of 12 weeks (which is like training), one hour of language, then we go and have l lunch at a member’s house, then we go out proselyting until 9, which we always have visits, so we are just teaching basically, then we come home and do it again.
3.  Does this area make you nervous at all? Are you liking your companion? Is he obedient? No it’s like the safest in the mission.  But we ride our bikes on the scary street and I feel like I’m gonna die every time haha.    There are crazy drivers here and we are on bikes haha.  Yes and Yes,
4.  What do you cook for breakfast and dinner? Do you meet in a church house then? Are there very many members?  I STARVE!  rice and ramen.. hahaaha I need simple recipes because they don’t have American food  and I don’t know what to make!!  In a meeting house, you can look it up on lds.org.  It’s Castelar stake, Parque Leloir ward.  There’s a lot of members.
5.  So do you ride a bike all the time? Yes if they aren’t broken.
6.  What do you eat most of the time? Are you liking the food?   Meat!!!  I haven’t gotten anything I didn’t like yet, but nothing has flavor!!!  Oh and I’m nervous because guess what? Their favorite thing to put on anything  IS!!???  MAYO!! haha
7.  What is your Sabbath day like?  Church starts at 9 and we have priesthood, then we go to the inv. class (basic doctrines), then sacrament last.. 
8.  What has been one of your happiest moments this week? I was struggling this week a lot, but on Sunday I felt the Spirit really strong and I remembered why I came here.   “The worth of souls is great in the sight of  God."  I just started bawling because this whole time I felt like I wasn’t doing anything, but I realized as I looked around and we had 6 investigators in church that I was making a difference.  Even if it was only one  soul my whole mission.
9.  What’s the hardest thing you have done this week?  SPANISH!!!! ITS SO DIFFICULT!!!!!!

Till next week
Sorry the pics didn’t work!
      Love you
 Elder Cook
Here is the mission home address if you would like to send Elder Cook a letter:

Elder Hunter Wayne Cook
Argentina Buenos Aires West Mission
C.C. No. 92
1702 Ciudadela
Buenos Aires

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

Primera Semana en Argentina‏ {Week 6}

Hola Familia! 
Wowwza this week has been so crazy!!!  To start out.. thanks so much for upgrading our seats to Buenos Aires.. literally we were the only missionaries that were able to sleep!!!  There was so much room!  I’ll send you pictures of how much room we had!!! I could serioulsy just lay almost flat!  Perfect for an 11 hour flight!!!  Anyways, so yeah that was great because we got to Buenos Aires and everyone was super tired and we felt fine... we were still tired but not as much.. So we went through customs and everything without any problems with anything, except it was kinda stressing me out because the people only spoke Spanish and they kept asking me what the address of the place I was staying at and I just had to keep saying "voy a la CCM de la iglesia de Jesuscristo de los santos de los ultimos dias."  The CCM is “MTC.”  They have a Buenos Aires CCM.  But I got through eventually hahaha.  She looked at my name plaque and was like okay whatever hahaha.

Leg room on the flight
Then we met our mission president. So everyone who was going to any Argentina mission was on our flight so there were probably like 30 of us.  Only 2 of us for Buenos Aires West.  So my mission president met us and he was directing all the other people to the buses they needed to get on and the planes they had to take to get to different parts of Argentina... So me and Elder Trent met Presidente Robertson and su esposa Hermana Robertson! They are incredible!! 
Flight companion Elder Trent
It was cool because they said that we are seriously the smallest group of missionaries they have seen.  They usually have like 10 at the least.... so we got to actually ride in their car with them to the temple and the CCM where there was a missionary from Peru who was leaving for our mission too.  We then went to the mission home and they just gave us this huge presentation on all that we needed to do and know.  We got our bedding and everything and money instructions etc.. Then president took us out to lunch!!!! We were super lucky because since there were only 3 of us, we got to go to a restaurant with president and his wife and the AP’s.  Everyone was super jealous haha.  The food here is seriously AMAZING!!!  Wow! I love it! 
First Argentine meal
Then we went back to the mission home and they told us we were going to go do contacts in the streets!!  I was super nervous, especially because of my Spanish, but we set a goal to get 12 contacts, just the 3 of us and the AP’s in an hour.  We said a prayer and then parted off and Argentines are serioulsy so nice!!!  I realized that there truly is a power in the name of Jesus Christ.  That’s why people listen to us because we wear His name on our hearts.  So that was so fun that I didn’t want to go back to the mission home!!!  I met so many amazing people who wanted to learn more about the gospel.  We got 15 contacts!!!!!!  President said that that was super good for just 3 of us in an hour.
After we had interviews with the president.. that was awesome!  I love him!  He told us that we were super lucky that there were only 3 of us because he was able to pick the 3 best trainers in the mission.  He said sometimes when there’s like 20 missionaries it’s hard to get 20 good trainers.  So we were all able to get the president's favorites!!!  So awesome..
With my trainer Elder Paskett
We spent the night across the street of the mission home in the pench that the AP sleep in.  In serioulsy like a closet.  I’ll send you pictures!  It was a little room with a bunk bed and a mattress on the floor for the 3 of us. Seriously so small, but it was good because it was only for one night.  
Tiny little room on the first night 
The next day we woke up and had transfer meeting!  Wow, it was so awesome!!!  We started out by singing a song as a mission called “I’ll find you friend.”  Of course in Spanish tho and it’s all about finding the people who we promised in the pre-existence that we could come and help.  It was so STRONG!!  I’ll send you the lyrics next week.  And then they had us, the "refuersos" stand up and they all cheered.  Holy cow 200 people cheering and screaming for you!  It was so cool.  Then they played a video of all the baptisms that everyone had this month and seriously the Spirit was so strong.  You would think that cheering would make it less spiritual, but I felt such a strong spirit.  Like everyone was so happy and excited that all these people were able to come to Cristo and they were just cheering them on!  Wow I almost started crying haha.
Then we got our comps.  Mine is Elder Paskett.  He’s from Farmington and he has 12 weeks left.  He’s so funny!  Literally one of the goofiest persons that I know! He makes everything a joke.  We then took a taxi to our pench.  It is soooooo big!!  Only we are in it.  Oh our area is called Castelar-Parque Leloir A.  When I got assigned there, all of the other missionaries were like.. "Oh that's the best area in the mission.”   WE HAVE A WASHING MACHING IN OUR PENCH and WE GET BIKES!! hahah so lucky! I think that it is the only pench in the mission with a washing machine.. so that’s super nice.  I’ll send pics of the pench.

Our Pench

Our living area
Our kitchen..it is huge!
Sorry about all the mistakes right now I'm typing on a computer that says every word is an error because it’s a Spanish computer.  Everything is underlined red.  Super annoying!!!  Speaking of Spanish, holy cow.  I am struggling so bad.  Here they don’t speak Spanish, they speak Castellano.  It’s so difficult to understand.  I feel super bad because in all of our lessons I can only testify and talk a little and don’t know what anyone is saying!  It's super frustrating!!! 

I love the people here!  They are so nice!!!!  We take so much for granted in the states.  Here it’s like when we went to Puerto Rico family.. but a little worse.  All of the roads are dirt with giant potholes.  You think PG ROADS  are bad.... wait til you come here. haha 

My companion on his bike
Oh and we don’t have dinner appointments here.. its lunch!!!  They eat such big lunches and like snacks for dinner!I
I have so much more to write but I don't have time...

We teach so many amazing people.. we have a couple people committed to baptism for next month!!!  I’m super excited!

Love you all!   Tell you more next week!

Love Elder Cook