Monday, October 26, 2015

"Mission" for my Millahue Bishop, Concert at the church

Hey everybody,

This week flew by, but it was a really good one.  Something really cool that happened last week on P-day was I was able to call my bishop from my old sector in Millahue because he had sent me on a “mission” to find the ex-missionary who baptized him like 40 years ago.  He now lives here in Victoria and is inactive.  I was able to find him and help him get in contact with my old bishop and he even came to church.  When I called my old bishop to tell him the news about me finding him, he was beyond happy and grateful to hear from me because he had sent a lot of missionaries with the information to find him over all these years but I was the only one who has responded and followed up. He thanked me a million times and said he’d never forget me, it was really cool to see the joy of him being able to get in contact with the missionary who baptized him. 

Another thing that was cool this week was we coordinated with the government of Victoria and the school district and we had an orchestra made up of little kids come play in our church. It was really cool because everyone in Victoria was invited and the church was pretty much filled with people who were not members. Also it was really good because we saw the people walking around the church looking at all the pictures of Jesus Christ and the people could see inside the church for what it really is.  Some of our investigators came who had never been inside the church so that was really good as well.  The music that the kids performed was really impressive for how young they are and it was wonderful to see that music can really touch our spirit and mind even though it’s not church music.  They even gave a little bit of time to our President of the Branch to introduce us as a church and tell what we believe and stuff.  He talked about how God is who has given us our gifts and talents, it was really cool.

Funny experience:  We had a practice baptism with one of our investigators whose name is K….  She is 9 and we have been working with her mom because she is less active.  Anyways, K… is really scared of the water and so we offered to have a little practice run with her in the water to help her get over her fears.  My companion spent an hour in the water with that little girl trying to get her head under the water, but she wouldn’t haha.  It was quite the scene but we think she feels a little bit more comfortable now and hopefully she can go under without fear the day of the baptism. 

This week in church we were able to have a bunch of investigators come to church but there are a lot of little kids who we are teaching and I feel like a dad having to be in charge of them all and control them.  Haha, they are all crazy but it’s a lot of fun.
                                        Well it looks like his ankle is feeling better!

Some other stuff that has continued this week, choir practice, English classes, lots of contacting and more haters in the streets.  Also I did an exchange with Elder Stevenson, it was a lot of fun and we have plans to chill after the mission.  That’s about it for this week.  I love all of you guys, keep reading the scriptures, praying, attending church and keeping the commandments :)  The Gospel is simple.  Have a good week!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Concepcion Temple, 40 day Fast

Family and Friends,

Well this week flew by and I’m pretty sure it flew by just because we were in the street contacting 90% of the week.  But it was a pretty chill week, unfortunately I don’t have another story of a person trying to kill me or anything crazy like that.  We were also able to find some other investigators that are really good, because the ones that we have been teaching for a while aren’t really progressing anymore unfortunately.  One of the things that happened this week is we had another exchange together Elder Faas and I!  It was a day filled with a lot of walking and passing by people who said we could come back but unfortunately they weren’t there when we did.  I think I need to say “fortunately”   because I’ve already said “unfortunately” 3 times haha.  Fortunately me and Elder Faas are really good homies and even if we are walking around in the street contacting all day we can still have a good time together! 

Other things that have happened this week:  We have been having choir practice, you can imagine how that is going (I’m bad at singing) and English class is still going well!  Oh, something that is really cool that happened was on Saturday morning we all got together in our church and watched the …. well I don’t know how to say it in English.  It is where they take the first dirt of construction of a temple and shovel into it, “ground breaking”?  I don’t know but they did that for the temple in Concepcion!  I had never seen one before so it was really cool for me.  Also it was cool to see how happy and grateful everyone was because their work and sacrifice finally paid off and they will have a temple in two to three years!  I thought it was cool that one of the people who gave a talk invited everyone to use these two to three years to really prepare for the temple and the blessings that will come from it.  It reminded me how we should always be worthy to enter into the temple and experience the peace and joy in there.

Well that’s about it for what happened this week.  Something that we are doing as a mission right now is called a 40 day fast, which is, you choose 5 things that distance the Spirit from you or 5 things that you want to improve as a person and then you write the 5 things that you are going to have to do to replace those first 5 things.  You pray every morning asking help from God with those 5 things and every night you pray about how you did, what you could do better, etc.  You do it for 40 days and as you do it, you will find that the majority of your basic desires have changed.  You will see the influence of the Holy Ghost more frequently day to day.  Its’ something that I just started and it hasn’t been easy, but I know the Lord is blessing me and I am becoming a better person!  So if you guys have things in your life that you want to change, I invite you to try it.  Hope you all have a good week!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Transfers, Scary Experience, King Benjamin

Hey guys, sorry for not sending an email last week, it was transfers and we had a lot going on and I didn’t have time.  It is alright though because not a lot happened because I was in my boot and it was raining so it made it really difficult to work.  But fortunately I had the opportunity to be in the same house as Elder Wallace as he ended his mission this past week.  He has been a big example for me and I was able to learn a lot from him.  It’s always cool when missionaries end their missions and give their last testimony because it is always very powerful and moving.  Dropping Elder Wallace off at the bus station was pretty sad though, this past transfer our house had grown really close together and I love these missionaries like brothers.  However glad that everything is moving forward, and yes, this transfer changed things up in our house. 

Elder Stevenson, a really good friend in the mission came to replace Elder Wallace. I’ve talked about him before but a long time ago he went to Weber and played lacrosse there, he’s a homie.  Also my companion Elder Fuimano got transferred out and now I am companions with Elder Patino!  He is from Mexico and a convert of 3 years.  He is really outgoing and funny so we have had a good time together. 

As for this week it has just been a ton of contacting, walking in the street I think we entered a total of 4 houses this entire week and were just outside for the week straight haha.  It has been pretty rough but we are just going to keep working hard and searching for the people that God has prepared.   While we have been in the street we have had some pretty crazy experiences, besides all the dogs biting us, none of them broke skin so we’re good.  Probably the experience that was the craziest was at about 8:30 at night and we were walking around a place contacting that isn’t that dangerous but can be sometimes.  Anyway, out of nowhere we heard somebody pounding on a door really hard and screaming at the house.  We saw that it was a guy who was really drunk and he had some metal bar thing that is like one of those constructions bars that was grinded off to a point at the end.  He was VERY mad and I imagine he was looking for his girlfriend due to what he was yelling.  So we passed to the other side of the street but he spotted us and started storming towards us saying “Te voy a matar gringo” which translated is “I’m going to kill you gringo.” Well I didn’t really realize how close he was to me until I looked back and saw that he was right next to me and he took a stab at me with his metal pole thing,  good thing I’m a ninja, even with my boot, and I dodged it and it missed me by only inches from going in between my shoulder and neck.  We started running away and he didn’t follow us.  Yeah, almost died, crazy stuff. 

A couple other crazy experiences, a guy came out of his house screaming that he wasn’t going to listen to our message until the United States stopped killing Islamic people…  We also found this family, who I’m almost confident are inactives of our church, who formed a church that pretty much just copied the restoration of our church along with everything else and just  Latino-ized it! haha pretty interesting.

We ended the week doing service cleaning the outside of a sisters house.  I don’t think it had been washed in 20 years and we got really dirty doing it, but it was a lot of fun. 

Update on my ankle, it feels a lot better but I can still feel some pain. I went to the hospital again on Thursday and the doctor told me that I can start to take the boot off every now and then so I can strengthen it, so I’ve been walking some in my boot and some without it.  Hopefully it heals really well and fast.

To end on a spiritual note, I am in the discourse of King Benjamin.  I don’t need to go on about how good it is because I’m sure that you guys already know, but the references that he makes to the natural man, Jesus Christ and service are all so good.  With every sacrament that we take we are renewing that covenant that we made at baptism to take upon ourselves the name of Christ.  We need to always remember that and remember that we are examples of the believers and the actions that we take reflect our devotion to Christ and His church.  I hope that all is well at home.  I love you all, have a good week!