It Came to Be Called ‘Mormon Street’

    “It Came to Be Called ‘Mormon Street’” Ensign, Sept. 2000, 66–67

    It Came to Be Called “Mormon Street”

    When I arrived in the Peru Chiclayo Mission, my only desire was to be obedient and work with great fervor to find those who would accept the gospel. Each morning, my companion and I knelt to pray for help in finding those who were seeking the Savior. Our prayers were answered many times.

    About 18 months into my mission, I was assigned to the Los Proceres Ward, Chiclayo Peru El Dorado Stake. One morning as my companion and I went out to work, we decided to collect some referrals from the members.

    On our way to a member’s home we passed a certain street, and I felt strongly that the Lord wanted us to knock on the doors of the houses on that street. I told my companion what I was feeling, and he agreed.

    We knocked on the first three doors on the block and were rejected at all three. This response discouraged my companion so much that he wanted to go back to our first plan of getting member referrals. Seeing how he felt, I agreed, but I could not deny the feeling I had.

    Later that month, my companion was transferred, and Elder Meyhuay was assigned to work with me. I helped him get settled the first night, but the first thing the next day I took him to the street where I had received the impression. I told him about my feeling, and he agreed to help me knock on every door there.

    As before, the people in the first few houses rejected us. But we were determined to endure to the end. Then we arrived at the house of the Quesada Zerita family. The woman who answered the door invited us in, and we taught her the first missionary discussion. She was very moved. We returned two days later to teach her husband. He also agreed to listen to us, and we taught another discussion. This time the whole family was there.

    So began a beautiful experience. As time went by, many of the families on that street wanted to hear the discussions. To accommodate them all, we had to set up benches outside and project our filmstrips onto a wall from the street. As we spoke to the large number of people who gathered to hear our message, we felt like the Apostles in ancient times. All of this gave us great joy.

    Going to church was exciting; we had to use four or five cars to get all the people to the meetinghouse, and the people from this street filled up four pews in the chapel. In the three months my companion and I worked together, we baptized about 50 people. Their names are written in my journal and in my heart.

    I have since learned that the street, which we called “Mormon Street,” is now part of a new Church unit. The families we baptized are still active in the Church, and this especially fills me with joy.

    Now that I have completed my mission and returned to my home in Ica, Peru, I still have challenges. But the experiences I had in the mission field give me strength. On my mission I learned to listen to the Lord. I learned that, like Nephi, when I seek to do the Lord’s will, I can be “led by the Spirit, not knowing beforehand the things which I should do” (1 Ne. 4:6).

    Illustrated by Richard Russell