Monday, August 31, 2015

Ummm, Huge Spiders! 
While you're reading this just remember that Jake has always HATED spiders! Angie


Tell me more about Elder Reyes and his family?  Elder Reyes live on the beach and his mom and bro are members of the church. I don't really know much because he doesn't talk much about his life back at home.

Do you have air conditioning in your house? Our house does not have an air conditioner. 

Is it just as hot and humid there in Belize? Yeah, it's hot and humid here.  It's like an oven but it's alright because we are on bikes.

Have you seen any cool animals? Well there are giant lizards that live in our backyard, but other than that no.

Have you found any investigators to teach? We have found lots of new people but the people are so relaxed here that sometimes it's hard for them to keep commitments.

What are the members like?  The members are super cool! A lot of them have moved from the US to here but all of them have really cool stories and they are all very different!


Well I realized that I have lost 15 lbs in El Salvador but I'm sure I'll be gaining it back anytime now that we are on bikes.  The Coke is addicting here.. The first time I was told that I was like "oh whatever" but it is so much better here!  It's made with actual sugar and it's really good.

I've noticed that now when I talk it's so different.. I have started saying "I have hunger" and "what hour is there" because that's how it's said in Spanish translated. Also here they say "that's why" all the time. Even when it doesn't make any sense they just say it and I've already started saying it. I have also started saying "That's nice" instead of "good". So instead of saying the food was good you say it was nice. They also say "next" instead of "other". and "drop" instead of "fall".  So when I come back I hope I'm not too weird.

The one picture of the kids is from an investigators house and his kids. The next one is with our bikes and our dog "Charlie".  He's not really our dog he just hangs out on our porch all the time. To strengthen our district we played Chubby Bunny where you basically try and fit as many marshmallows in your mouth as possible.  I think I only got 9 but it was really hard. The next pic is of us in zone meeting and then the spider!.... We were in the church with all the members and my companion noticed this tarantula and it was huge!!! Now I have a hard time thinking cause I feel like they are under my bed... The next pic is of Fish Head Soup.. When I first saw it I didn't know what I was going to say, but now that I've been on my mission this kind of stuff doesn't bother me anymore and it was actually really nice! I also got the package and it was really awesome.  I loved the ties and all the snacks!  Nutella is like Gold here because its like $15 here.

But yeah, that was the week. We met lots of new people and have been working really hard! They messed up on changes which are tomorrow so I already know who my comp is... Welcome Elder Leslie to Santa Elena! We're going to kill it here!

That's all for now! Thanks for all the love and support! I love you all!

Elder Stiles!

(click on photos to enlarge)

Monday, August 24, 2015

English Mixed with Spanish & Creole


What type of plane did you fly over in?  I don't remember the plane.

Did any other missionaries go with you? I was the only one.  I was an emergency transfer.

Are there any leaders there who supervise you?  Just the missionaries, and a senior-couple missionaries. The opera singer from Eagle will be our new senior missionary which is cool.  She's the one that led the music that one time.

Who picked you up at the airport?  The senior missionaries and my comp.

Who is your new companion? My new comp is Elder Reyes from Nicaragua.

Was it hard to say goodbye to Elder Calero?  It wasn't too hard because I was too excited about going to Belize.

Where are you living?  We live in a little yellow house in Santa Elena.

What is your house like?  The house is nice just plain.

Do you know why President Hintze chose you to go to Belize at this time?  I'm not sure why he chose me so young in the mish but it's cool he did.

How did you find out that you were going to Belize?  I found out because an assistant called and said that I had to be in San Salv the next day at 8.

What language will you be speaking mostly? We mostly speak English but we also speak Creole and Spanish.

Are you worried that you won't get to practice your Spanish?  Yeah it kinda sucks that I don't talk as much but I'll go back to Salv one day.


Well I'm in Belize! It's super awesome! I got the call Wednesday saying that I needed to be in San Salvador the next day with all my bags so I packed all night and I didn't sleep at all.. I'm not sure if I was too excited or what but we went to San Salv to get all my paperwork done then I went out with a missionary all day. I had to leave a bunch of things behind because my suitcase was too heavy but I'll get it all back when I return to El Salvador!

The plane ride was really short.  We went up and then just went straight back down. The Senior missionaries picked me up and we did all my paperwork so I could be legal and then I went to the house to drop off all my stuff. We went and ate fried chicken and then left to get to know the members. Then we ate with the zone and they are super cool and funny! Here we ride bikes and we also get to use our sunglasses because its sooo hot and bright outside. We had a sports night with all the members and a bunch of people came! A lot of the people here speak Creole and we can't understand them. The Branch is super small and they need a lot of help from the missionaries so basically we are the branch presidency. But everything is new here and we use Spanish and English a lot - a lot of times in the same sentence... like  "bwoi vamos a church"

I've only had a couple days here so not much new. I'll have more next week! love you all!

Elder Stiles


 Goodbye El Salvador

 Street in Belize
 Branch President in Belize

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Belize Bound!

Hey Dad & Mom, 

Just wanted to let you know that tomorrow I'm going to Belize. Someone has changes early so I get to go early!  But what sucks is that one of the apostles is coming to talk to the missions but I'll be gone so I won't be able to see him. But I'm going to Belize!  The area I'm going to is really hard and hasn't baptized in 16 months but I'll be breaking the curse! I'm going to Santa Elena Cayo.  

Just wanted to let you know. I'll make sure to send lots of pics! 

Love you tons! Bye! Jake

Monday, August 17, 2015

The Most Spiritual Place In All The World


Mailing address (purchase International Stamps @ the Post Office for $1.20)

Elder Jacob Tyler Stiles
MisiÓn El Salvador San Salvador Oeste/Belice
Apartado Postal #81, Correos Multiplaza
San Salvador, El Salvador, C.A.

Hey Everyone,

Well first I'll answer the questions like usual.

What did the investigators think about the Temple and Family History?  The investigators just said that it was really good so I'm not really sure.

How did the surgery go for the investigator that you donated blood for?  For the man, the surgery went pretty well I think! He was out walking around the other day.  He had a surgery on his face and on his neck.  Not exactly sure what he had but he just had to have blood to replace his blood or something.

Do you have transfers every 6 weeks?  Transfers are every 6 weeks, yes.

How did you kill that Garrobo?  The Garrobo was alright the meat was kinda hard.  To kill the Gorrobo first we had to cut its head off then put its body in the fire.  When you hold it over the fire it still moves and it's super crazy.  Then just put it in a pot with stuff in it.

I hope you didn't just start hacking it's head off while it was still alive.  Yes, it was still alive.

Do you buy them at the store?  We bought it from a member.  I'm not sure why she had it.

Are they sold for the purpose of eating them?  Yes, they are sold for the purpose of eating.

How much did it cost?  It cost $6.00 but 4 of us paid for it.

How did you know how to skin it and cook it?  Skinning it was easy but we didn't know how to cook it so  the member did it for us.

Now This week was pretty good!

First we got to go to the Temple and do a session which was super awesome!  It was in Spanish so it was a little long but still really cool!  The thing I love the most is that it's just so quiet and you could hear a pin drop.  But it's the most spiritual place in all the world! 

This week we also did a fast so that our zone could find people to baptize before the end of this change.  All day on Monday we looked for new people to teach but it was actually really fun because the Zone Leaders made a scavenger hunt to help us find more people!  We had things like:
    Find a man named Mario and invite him to church.
    Talk to 5 families.
    Talk to 5 people wearing blue shirts.
    Dance in 3 LPE (LPE is when we talk to someone that we have never talked to before.)
    Wash a dog or cat.
    Take a picture with a really old lady.
These things helped us be more motivated to find people.  The Elders who had the most points won and of course me and Calero beat everyone ;)  But that day we were running up and down every street talking to everyone.

We made French toast for some members because they were wondering what we eat in the United States. It turned out really good and they loved it. We had an activity where were watched Meet the Mormons and invited everyone to come and watch it.  We ended up getting like 70 people at the church.

Something that I learned this week is that everyone wants to fight with us about our religion.  Yesterday someone tried telling us that our fist bump was of the devil... and Elder Calero just pulled out some scriptures.  It's really sad.  The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true!

That sums it up for this week!

Love you all! Elder Stiles :)

Monday, August 10, 2015

Saving Souls & Lives


Should you be eating things made from ice?  I think the ice is fine but idk I haven't had any problems.

Are you just going to eat everything and hope your stomach gets adjusted to all the bugs and worms? Well we kinda just have to eat about everything. Our zone that were in right now everyone has been sick. So it's kinda just this area where you just expect to get sick. You cant really deny food from anyone so it's hard.

What does “baggy” mean?  Baggy = Thinks about home, and/or have the want to go home

What is a pilla? Is it clean?  A pilla is basically a giant bucket full of water where we wash our clothes and stuff, and no, it is not clean.  The only clean water is from bottled water.  We also buy 5 gallon jugs of water for the house.

Do you have any suggestions on how to survive the MTC because some of the missionaries are having a hard time?  My only suggestion is to just know that you won't be in there forever. Just take it day by day. I remember the only thing that got me through was me and my companion just counted the hours until we could eat and sleep. The MTC will be hard and there's not much you can do... Day by day! Tell him I'm sorry!

What are the hardest parts of being a missionary?   The hardest part is just the tiredness of being mentally and physically exhausted... not much bad. Maybe eating food if you're picky.

What has been you biggest trial so far? Biggest trial has just been the language but even that isn't too bad.

Where do you get your hair cut?  Well lately a lady in town has been cutting it. I get my hair cut for $1.50, and as you can expect, for a dollar my hair cut doesn't look too hot; but hey, can't ask for much more.

Do you feed any animals?  We don't really feed too many animals. Just kinda depends on what's going on. We did eat iguana but he was feeding us, haha.

Do the people you teach give you stuff?  Yeah they give us food all the time and sometimes its sketchy.. but they give us stuff too.

Are your shoes worn out?  My shoes are still pretty good! I just noticed that one part is getting kinda rubbed down but not much else.


Well this week was really good! First of all we baptized two more people! One named Adonay and his son Marvin! They are super cool.  They were family with Andy and Sergio! They were just looking to change their lives and come back to church and we just happened to be there to find them! We also had the opportunity to go to the temple and take investigators to it and help them learn about what we do in the temple. We basically just took them and helped them go to a bunch of different stations where they talked about Family History and the History of Temples which was really cool! We also had Interviews with President Hintze which are my favorite! We can ask him whatever questions and he always has an answer! It's really grown my testimony about how people really are called of God and are put in their calling for a reason. But I loved having my interview with him!

We killed an iguana this week and ate it.  They are called "garrobo" which is like a male iguana. It was really good! We had to kill it and skin it ourselves which was kinda gross but super cool! It's super interesting how you do it all but it is kinda too intense for everyone.  We saw a snake the other day and we are thinking about buying one to eat! Just about 10 minutes ago we found a turtle and ended up giving it away to some church lady that wanted to make sangre de tortuga which is turtle blood in English.  Not sure what that is but she says its good!

I went on inter-changes with Elder Maliga this week where I just went in his area and helped him. And Today! We went to the beach which was pretty cool! It's my second time going and it was still super cool.  We didn't do much but eat and play football on the beach but it was awesome!  We couldn't get in the water so basically we just looked in the water.  We had to ride in the bus and it was so cramped that people were riding on the floor. There are waves here but they aren't big.  I don't think they have big waves here.

Oh and I also donated blood to help an investigator for the other Elders... Hence the "Saving Souls and Lives" because he is using it for a surgery.  But it was a crazy day!  Well this whole week was crazy but I sent a lot of pictures so I hope you enjoy them!

Love Elder Stiles!!!!


Monday, August 3, 2015

Just Like In The Movies

Jake's Email is
He loves getting letters!! Even a short note or maybe a picture would be awesome!


Have you tried Pupusas de Larocca? 
    I have not tried Pupusas de Larocca because I heard Larocca is gross.

Why haven't you had water for 5 days? 
    Well we didn't have water in the house so we resorted to taking water from the Pilla where we wash our clothes and putting it into a bucket. Then used that to shower. Also we had to use the same water to put in the toilet to flush it. We still don´t know what happened but we have water now!

Did you find the investigators that you met on the bus? 
    We didn´t find the people on the bus. The problem here is that people say their directions like this: "Well I live up the street and to the right a little bit and there is a store across the street. Also there is a dog that is always outside the house", and there are many things wrong with this...
      1. They don't tell what street because they don't have names.
      2. You never know where to turn.
      3. There are at least 2 stores on every street.
      4. And there are literally a billion dogs running around.
    So no we ended up not finding them which is sad.

What is something that you have learned about Elder Calero, like, what does he want to do after his mission?  Haven´t really learned much about Elder  Calero just that he didn't grow up in the church. He doesnt like to talk about home because it makes him baggy haha. Elder C wants to do something with Electrical Engineering.

You need to go with Nora and try the food from here. It's really good! Especially the Pupusas! Well this week was was really good! Something really good here is called Arroz con Leche which is basically just warm milk with rice put it it. Its really good if the people make it right. The first time I tried it I didn't like it at all but after a while I started to like it.

We met a guy that Used to live in Nampa Idaho! He only lived there for 2 years but he played in a Mexican band there and was super excited when I said I was from Idaho. He also makes these things called Minutos which is basically shaved ice with flavoring. But here they do something called Minuto Loco which is shaved ice, Lemon, Chili pepper, and salt. I'm not sure why people would buy it because it's all just hot and doesn't taste very good but Elder Calero likes it.

This week we have 3 people that we have planned to be baptized! There names are Angel, Adonay, and Marvin.  Angel lives with the Rivera Family (Ward mission leader) and Adonay is family.  His son is Marvin. But we will baptized 2 more families this change which will be really cool!

We also got to go to the temple this week because our ward mission leader was getting sealed in the temple! We had everything planned out super well and we were super excited to be able to go and see a sealing! We worked really hard in the morning and left to go to the Temple at 3:00. But the bus was going super slow all the way there. The session started at 5 and the bus stopped in El Salvador at 5... It was just like in the movies. We ran all the way to the temple, passed all the people waiting outside and went inside the temple and looked at the man in the front desk and all he said was "It´s too late" and we just sat down... We didn't get to enter the sealing but while sitting in the temple we just felt this great peace over us and felt happy. We got to see them when they got out and Everyone was super excited! Even though we didn't get to enter it was super awesome! This next coming week we are going to the temple and taking investigators.  We also have a plan to go to the beach next Monday!!

I'll have some great pictures next week!

Love you all!
Elder Stiles :)