One of the new missions that was created, is the one I was called too! The Ecuador Guayaquil West Mission! Since it is a new mission I have been learning as much as I can about what to pack, the weather, the culture, the language, religion, and anything else you can think of. When I first opened my call I had no idea where I had been called. I knew it was in South America but didn't know where. So..I thought I would share what I have been able to learn online and by asking people who have served there or have traveled there with family.
Where is Ecuador? South America of course :)
Where will I be in Ecuador?
The Coastal Low Lands!
I have always loved the beach, so why not be on the coast near the equator. The only down side is I can't go in the water as a Missionary but that's okay. Hopefully I will get a glimpse of the amazing sunsets.
Other neat thing is that that my mission does go across the equator...woot woot! So just maybe i'll be assigned to an area North of the equator on my journey in Ecuador as a majority of the mission is in the Southern Hemisphere.
Weather on the Coast vs. Guayaquil
There are only two versions of the weather on the Coastal side of Ecuador, WET or DRY.
From January to May is the Wet Season, which I hear is also hot and humid, so it's more of a sauna session that you can not escape. :( So it rains a lot which means a jacket and boots but then it's also hot and did I say HUMID.
As long as I am prepared for the two seasons I am sure I'll be fine and enjoy the weather as much as I can without being able to swim in the Ocean.
The Church in Ecuador
Ecuador's Church membership has nearly doubled in the past five years. To accommodate the growing membership, more than 130 Church buildings have been erected in Ecuador. The Church provides both academic and religious education to youth in the country.
Total Church Membership: 211,165
Missions: 3 (there will be 5 in July 2013)
Family History Centers: 43
Stats and Info via the LDS News Room.
The Guayaquil Ecuador Temple was the first temple built in Ecuador.The temple, labeled "the most beautiful building in Ecuador" by members and nonmembers alike, stands majestically in a peaceful hillside setting in northern Guayaquil.
Missionaries in the Guayaquil West Mission
Here is my future Mission President and his wife - Hermano y Hermana Dennis!
Jorge and J. Anette Dennis
Jorge Dennis, 55, and Jeannie Anette Herrin Dennis, four children, Parkway Branch (Spanish), North Salt Lake Utah Parkway Stake: Ecuador Guayaquil West Mission. Brother Dennis serves as a gospel doctrine teacher and a temple ordinance worker, and is a former counselor in a stake mission presidency, high councilor, stake missionary, bishop, counselor in a bishopric, ward Young Men president, ward mission leader, high priests group assistant and ward Young Men adviser. Owner/CEO, EnviroKleen, LLC. Born in Ciudad Obregon, Sonora, Mexico, to Jesus and Elena Lauterio Dennis.
Sister Dennis serves as a counselor in a branch Young Women presidency and is a former secretary to a stake Relief Society presidency; stake missionary; ward Primary president, counselor in ward Primary, Relief Society and Young Women presidencies; Relief Society teacher and compassionate service leader. Born in Provo, Utah, to Curtis Lamar and Patricia Joanne Stewart Herrin.