I can't really believe that I've already been in Chile for 2 years. It doesn't really seem like the time has passed that fast, but here we are. I'm so grateful for all the things that I've learned in this time, and all the people that I have met. Chile will always have a special place in my heart, except maybe when they play the US in the World Cup.
We are happy to announce that Malcom got baptized this Saturday. It was great to see. He's really changed a lot. I remember the first time we met him. He came to church one day, alone. He me the branch president in the door and asked, "Is it ok if I go in?" The branch president said, "Well of course!" That's when we met him. He said that he want us to teach him, so that's what we did. Now, almost 3 months after meeting him, he made the decision to be baptized. We are so proud of him. It wasn't easy for him, but he always knew that it was the right decision.
Other than that, we found a whole bunch of goats. My mom said that I always send pictures of random animals, and today is not an exception. The black goat is named Jacinto. He's basically like a little dog.
Well, I'll be home on the 19th. and that's it. For the last time, I miss you guys, and see you all soon.
We had a great week this week, mostly for the baptism of Benjamin. Benjamin is a little kid that's 9, and he lives with this mom and his brother. We were so happy to see that he made the decision to be baptized. After teaching him all that he needed to know, I'm so happy to see all of his progress.
We found Benjamin in the most curious way. It was late at night, and we were out knocking doors. We stopped to talk to this one guy who was named Anibal. Anibal said he was catholic but he always liked to talk the missionaries. We started to explain to him the Restoration and the story of Joseph Smith. Everything was going great until we saw a little kid and his mom struggling to carry a mattress.
We basically left Anibal mid conversation there to help these two carry this mattress. They graciously accepted our offer to help. As we talked with them we found out that the lady carrying the mattress, Nidia, was a member of the church, and was baptized about 5 years ago. We helped them carry it all the way to their house, and we asked them if we could come back to teach them and get to know their family. She said yes.
The next time that we went, we met Benjamin. He was a little kid that struggled with depression and was really shy, but now that he knows the Gospel, he runs around and laughs with the other kids. It was really great to see that change in him.
Everything should be good for this week, because Malcom said that he wants to get baptized this week. I'll let you know how that goes. I miss you all, and see you soon.
We also made jelly and pancakes.
We had a great zone conference this week. It was special because it was my last one in the mission. I can't believe that time has gone so fast, and that that was my last one. It was really great. President Romeu gave a great training on the Book of Mormon. He said that the Book of Mormon is a great tool that we have to convert the people. He said that if the people tell us that the Bible is the only word of God, we should ask them if they have ever prayed to know if that was true. It was a really great strategy. He said that the Book of Mormon testifies of Jesus Christ, and because of that it has a lot of spiritual power.
We were able to see that just a day before when we were teaching a person named Jim. He had a lot of faith in Jesus Christ and he was really active in his church. He said he really admired us for what we do, and He really admired the Church because he said it was so orgainized. What he didn't accept was the fact that we had more scripture from God. He loved the Bible and for him it was the only word of God.
We tried to explain to him that Jesus said he had other sheep that are not of this fold, and he must also bring them. We testified of the truthfulness of that. Even with that he didn't see the need. We showed him that the Book of Mormon clarifies a lot of doctrines in the Bible, like when Jesus said that the must be baptized to fulfill all righteousness. Even with that he still didn't see the need.
Finally, a small impression came to my mind to read 3 Nephi 11, when Jesus comes to visit the people in the Americas. We opened there and I began to read. The Spirit in that room was incredible as we read those 6 verses of scripture. I know that he felt the power of the Book of Mormon. After he said that he would read it, that he felt something different inside of him. We knew that it was the Spriit.
We are so happy to be here in the mission. I love all of the experiences I have had. I miss you all!
Today we had a pretty good day, because we went with the whole zone to a place called El Valle del Encanto. It's basically a valley with hyroglyphs and native American stuff. And lots of rocks. And when I say all of the zone, I mean like half, because Elder Jacobson couldn't go because of his ankle, and Combarbalá is way to far away. But anyway it was still fun.
We've been seeing lots of miracles this week. We were walking close to the church this past Saturday. The District Relief Society had just had an activity, and we walked in asking if they needed any help cleaning up. As we gathered the last few things, two women walked in the door. One said that she was a member of the church from Santiago. The other was her sister that lives in Ovalle. The member was visiting her sister in Ovalle, and she wanted to bring her sister and her family to church the next day. The only problem was that they didn't know where the church was.
Well, they just decided to walk until they found it, and that's what they did. And they found it, and we were inside. It was perfect! They both came to church, and her sister brought her daughter and grandaughter. They were really excited to be in the church. That really helped my testimony that God is preparing people to be in His church. We were in the right place at the right time.
For all of those who want to come, my homecoming talk will be September 30th. The sacrament meeting starts at 11, and the address is 1305 North 100 East AMERICAN FORK, Utah 84003. See you there!
Well, we had lots of fun this week. First of all we had lots of people saying in our house this week. On Sunday, we received Elder Crapo from Combarbalá. His companion, Elder McCracken just finnished his mission, and he had to go down to Viña this week. So basically, Elder Crapo didn't have a companion, so he stayed with us until his companion got there. And another thing, Elder Domínguez is his new companion, and he is new in the mission! This is his first area! I hope you guys remember a little about what I told you in Combarbalá, but that would be a pretty great first area. I guess we'll see what he thinks about that.
The next day, we stayed with Elder Beltran and Elder Elliott. Elder Beltran had to go to Illapel, but they live in Monte Patria, which is pretty far away, so they came to sleep in our house so the next morning they could make it to the bus. Then we were there with Elder Elliott for a while, waiting for his new companion, Elder Jacobson. They got there pretty late, so they got to stay the night in our house so they could get to Monte Patria in the morning. It was basically a party.
The next day we traveled to Viña for Leadership Council. It was pretty great, only that we got back to our house at 12:20 at night. And then the next day they changed the hour, so even less sleep. It was alright, we are fine now.
Everyone pray for Benjamin, our little friend who's 9. He's gonna be baptized the 25th of August, so lets hope everything goes well. Until next week!
First of all, thanks to all that wished me a happy birthday! I just love birthdays in the mission.
We've had a pretty crazy week. First of all, we did double exchanges this week. We did exchanges with Monte Patria and with Canihuante.
First in Monte Patria, Elder Beltran and I stayed in Ovalle Sur. It wasn't really that we stayed, more like we had to travel to Monte Patria and back, which is about 2 hours round trip. It was great.
Then I got to go to Canihuante. I was great to see all of the old people that I met there. I got to see the branch president of Ovalle Norte, and it was just good to see them all again. I was with Elder Budes
And then we got transfers. Elder Beltran is going to Illapel, and he will be missed. I'll let you guys know what happens with that. I miss you all!
So this week was pretty interesting. We went to a place called Combarbalá. So that you guys can understand a little about what that means, we need to understand a little bit of the backstory.
I don't know exactly if it happened like this, but this is how I imagine it happened. One day Elder Hunsaker (US) and Elder Ortellado (Argentina), both zone leaders, recieved a call from Presidente Díaz. I don't know exactly what he said in that call, but I imagine it was something like this, "Elders, I have a special job for you." He then explained that they were going to establish the church in a little town called Combarbalá, about 2 hours from the city of Ovalle.
There have never been missionaries in Combarbalá, untill about 6 months ago. Elder Hunsaker and Elder Ortellado were the first missionaries to set foot in Combarbalá. The first thing they had to do was find some place to live, and find a place to meet on Sundays. They found a pretty big house, and now that serves as their house/chapel. They started out with nothing, and yesterday 20 people went to their Sunday meetings.
Elder Hunsaker and Elder Ortellado have already finnished their missions, and now in Combarbalá are Elder McCracken, the former assistant to the president, from Highland Utah, and Elder Crapo, former executive secretary to the president, also from Utah.
The people are really different there. I found that out really quick, because we went around asking people if they would like to hear a message about Jesus Christ, and they would say something like, "Sure, come on in!" There have been very few times in my mission when people have done that, but there was a lot of that in the one night I was in Combarbalá. I know that the Elders are doing a great job in Combarbalá, and the Lord has prepared those people to receive the Gospel.
And speaking of Combarbalá, they just had a baptism. Her name is Cecilia, and they travelled 2 hours from Combarbalá to Ovalle, because in Combarbalá there's no baptismal font. It was so great to see the support from all the members there. It was really great to see that.
Well, this is the last week until transfers, so I'll let you guys know what happens. I miss you all!
We had our first zone conferences this week with President Romeu. We are really excited to work with his new vision.
We also had divisions with the AP's this week. Shoutout to Joseph Rowely, because I went with his cousin Elder Pace. It was great.
We have found 2 people that are progressing. They both have a baptismal date for this week, the 28th. So pray for them. Their names are Malcom and Delmira. Malcom is an investigator that came to church solo. Nobody went to find him, he just showed up one week, and we started teaching him. Delmira has been talking with the missionaries for a long time. She's finally made the decision to be baptized, so we are really excited for her. I hope you guys can pray for them.
Well, I guess that's it. I miss you guys!
We've had a great week. First of all, I'd like to take a moment of silence for the World Cup (RIP). I guess we'll have to wait another 4 years.
Anyway, we've had to travel a lot these last few days. We went to a place called Punitaqui, which is about a 40 minute bus ride from Ovalle. We went there because we had lunch with a family there. It amazes me that they drive all that way to get to church. And they are there every week. I makes me think what I was doing before my mission when there was a temple 5 minutes from my house.
Well, after that they invited us to their family home evening on Sunday, so we went back to Punitaqui. It's really a cute little town, but there's not much. Other than that, not much happened this week. We've been doing missionary stuff.
Well, I guess that's it. I miss you all.
Oh, almost forgot, I went to Monte Patria this Tuesday, and they have a Super Shower. Literally, I thought it was like a time machine, but it was a shower. That's it.
This week was pretty interesting, because we finally got to meet the new mission president! His name is President Romeu, and he is from Argentina. We got to meet his wife also and his kids! I thought that was a little weird, because his kids are like 10.
The leadership council was great. President Romeu spoke about a few things that were going to change in the mission. He wants us all to have the same vision, and that's how we are going to have lots of success. He talked to us about opportunities to serve others, and how we can serve the other missionaries.
I also got to see a few old friends, like Elder Pace, Elder Villanueva, Elder Pinheiro, Elder Vega, Hermana Peñaló, and Hermana Rassmussen. Basically the whole zone of Quilpue when I was there. It was great to see them all again. We took photos to remember the old times.
We are really excited to work with the new vision of President Romeu. We are already thinking of ways we can help the zone have the same vision. It's really been great. Shout out to my sister, TJ, that got married this last week. Congratulations!
Well, I hope you all have a great week!
September 2016 - September 2018