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Tuesday, September 29, 2015

September 29, 2015

It's been a great week! On Wednesday I was able to go to Pirque for exchanges. I absolutely love going to that sector because it's up in the mountains and all green with fresh air. Getting out of the city gives me a breather sometimes. The houses are all spaced out and they're just really humble, great people that I met up there. I met a young mom of 18 years that is investigating the church and she was very receptive and ready to receive the gospel in her life, a less-active that really wants to go back to church but she's addicted to cigarettes, and a few other less-active members. On Saturday it was my companion's birthday and I think we ate cake or Peruvian food at every single house we went to and were running late to get home. We ended up both throwing up that night and feeling way sick the next day. Church, though, was excellent and we were happy to see many investigators, less-active members, and recent converts all together in church, right where they should be on a Sunday morning.
Spiritual Experience:
On Sunday morning, we passed by to walk with Monserrat to church. Her grandma and brother were getting ready to leave the house and said they could drop us off at the chapel. We had planned on walking but accepted the ride and ended up getting to church like a half an hour early. At first I was all stressed out thinking we should go out and use this time to contact that I forget to just look up and look around. One by one people starting walking through the chapel door until there were about seven or eight of us standing in a circle talking. I looked around and realized that every single one of them were a recent convert, an investigator, or someone that didn't attend church when we came to the ward. Hermana Alcantara and I have been blessed enough to serve all of them and just thinking about where they were when I first met them and where they are now, first ones to church on Sunday morning, smiling and ready to hear the word of God, was such a great moment. 

A brother of one of our investigators came out of his kitchen and gave me this mayonaise because it's American Style and I'm American. haha.
zone pday

we did a flower relay race and other typical Chile games

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

September 22, 2015

It's definitely been a week. It went normal until the earthquake on Wednesday. We were in a meeting at our ward mission leader's house when it hit. The Elders had just left because they had to run to an evening appointment and we were sitting at hs table telling the hermano about some of the people we teach. It started to shake a little. I though my companion was bouncing her leg up and down, but I looked down to see if she was and she wasn't. Then I looked down at Hermano Leon's legs to see if he was shaking his leg and he wasn't shaking either. Then the hermano looked at me all confused because I was looking around at everyone's legs. I looked up to explain to him that I thought I felt something shaking and his eyes got all big and he said, "está temblando." then it started getting strong and the hermano's wife  runs out of the kitchen screaming "earthquake" and then screaming for her son who was outside playing soccer. It kept getting stronger and I just huddled there under the door frame and watched the furniture and even the wooden floors move around.  Personally I didn't think it was that scary but my companion instantly started screaming and crying and Hermano pushed us underneath the door frame and ran to find his son. Hermana Alcantara is screaming '"oh my gosh!" and Hermano Leon's wife starts reciting really loud the Virgin Maria prayer (she's Catholic) and then I was just there in the middle of them like ... patting them and stuff trying to calm them down. It lasted a few minutes. The phones and stuff were down for a while afterward so a lot of people were worried about their family members and that they couldn't contact, but the next day everyone just seemd fine and back to normal. We've been feeling the little after-shock waves every couple hours which really scares my companion, but Chile is built to survive earthquakes.

On the 18th we had a celebration lunch with a less-active/investigator family and from then on the next two days we walked almost all day because almost nobody wanted to recieve us during the holidays. I gave a talk in church on Sunday.

We had a special zone fast and afterward we were in an appointment with a young investigator who has had desires to follow Christ for a long time. She just didn't want to commit to a baptismal date. She finally accepted one for the 18th of October. Pray for Monserrat!

There are always a lot of dogs running and walking around on the street here. We passed this little tiny one and I was all, "ooh how cute!" and pointed to it.Hermana  Alcantara looks over and goes "awwww!"' and approaches it and all the sudden it barks and shows these huge teeth and we both just started sprinting down the street laughing so hard. 

Tuesday, September 15, 2015

September 15, 2015

Summary:Hermana Valladares left and to our surprise they added a companionship of Elders to the ward. They still live in the same apartment, they just switched sectors and actually didn´t even let the poor Elders know. In the meeting with all the mission that very same day President Morgan told them they´ll be doing a "white wash" in the open sector in the Cordillera ward. They´re both good Elders though, I´m sure they´ll work hard. After that meeting we had to have another meeting with the Bishop to refine the sector limits in the ward. Unfortunately, a couple of our great investigators are now on the Elders' side. Whichever way you cut it, though, that´s how it will be. 

On Thursday and Friday we had to be in the house early because September 11 is the anniversary of an uprising that happened here in Chile so people go out in the streets and burn stuff and do crazy things. Nothing too crazy happened in my sector though and all the missionaries are safe.
This coming Friday is 18 de Septiembre, Las Fiestas Patrias! Chile celebrates their independence, and everyone is already partying and decorating and eating empenadas and dancing the "Cueca." On Thursday we´ll have our ward party and there should be some new investigators and less-active members there. It´ll be a fun week!
There's a family we teach that the hermano is a less-active member and his wife is investigating the church. The missionaries have been visiting them for quite a while. They´re such a cute family but the husband is sometimes demanding and tries to always test our knowledge of the scriptures and stuff and always whines about how we come in and take off really fast and don´t spend enough time at their house. I wanted to stop teaching them because I felt like there are lots of people waiting to hear the gospel and we are wasting time being in their house every week while they´re not progressing, but the bishop asked us not to leave them because in his eyes they are slowly progressing. The bishop does have the keys, and I am here to serve him. So, I´ve been praying a lot for this family and to be able to touch them in some way as well as be obedient. We went to our appointment last week and it was so awesome! It was like a total change of countenance. Also, they had their niece over and she told us at first she didn´t want to listen. Then the hermano invited her again and she said something like, "fine but it´s only because I don´t have anywhere to sit and I´m already here on the couch." Then she started listening. Then she wanted to participate. All of her first comments she´d make sure to add, "I don´t want to be Mormon or anything... but yeah I think that´s true." haha. By the end she was asking questions and even asked for a Book of Mormon and said she was really interested. When we left the lesson, the hermano said for the first time, "Thanks for coming. I´ve learned something new today."

There´s a less-active family from Peru that we teach and they have one of the cutest little girls I´ve ever seen. She asked me my name and I said, "Hermana Martin." Then she pointed to my companion and asked her. She said, "Hermana Alcantara." Then I asked her what her name was, expecting her to say Yeseline, but very quickly she said, "Hermana de Arianna." haha Arianna is her older sister. 

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

September 8, 2015

Our two weeks of Trio has come to an end and it turns out that all of the hermanas I live with are leaving except for Hermana Alcantara and I. There were six and now there are two! It's been so great working in both sectors of the ward and getting to know investigators, less-active members, recent converts, and even active members that I didn't really know before. I really do admire so much both of my companions. Hermana Valladares from Honduras and Hermana Alcantara from Peru. They're both so humble, obedient, and hard-working that it hasn't been a problem getting along. Plus they're both fun! I've learned from them that even in a group of very different people, with the same goal, anyone can become great friends.  We've pretty much been running from appointment to appointment, so it might be a little sting this week going back to working only in half again. Especially because we haven't found many new people to teach in the past couple weeks. I'm excited for a new change!
Spiritual Experience:
It never ceases to amaze me that every time we have a meeting, someone always says exactly what I need to hear. This past week we talked about self-sufficiency, and it's something I really want to implement in the work and help people understand it.
We visit an hermano that was less-active when we met him. His mom is 87 years old and she always listens to the lessons, but I'm not really sure if she can hear or not. Every once in a while, though, she'll make a comment and it's always, "Asi es la vida po." Like, "Well... that's life." We'd finish reading about something in the scriptures or bear a testimony and she'd just nod and say, "Asi es la vida po." Haha we were laughing about it as we left and ever since then, whenever one of us would say something dumb as we were walking we'd say it in her voice. haha

We helped la familia cofre paint their house. This little girl is probably one of the most hilarious people I´ve ever met

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

September 1, 2015

I think this past week may have been the busiest one I've had so far in the mission! That's how I like it! It's been awesome working as a trio. I'm actually kind of sad it's only a temporal thing. It's been great getting to know everyone in the ward, not just the half that live in my sector. 

I did exchanges with Hermana Griffin this week. She's from Texas but she went to school at BYU and played soccer there. Her sector is in the mountains and I loved spending the day there. We even had an appointment up in the mountains with a family that has an ostrich farm. I was nervous when she told me that because ostriches are so scary, but the appointment fell through, so I never did quite get to meet them.

Rosita was baptized on Sunday and it was a great experience. She will be a strong member and she's already progressing and working towards making her next covenants. The testimony she bore after the ordinance might have been the sweetest thing I've ever heard.

I was also overwhelmed with all the love and kind words I received on my birthday. Both from the people here in Chile and from my loved ones at home. Thank you for being such special people! I sincerely love you all. 

Spiritual Experience:
We've been visiting a family of less-actives and investigators. Finally, after years, the mom came to sacrament meeting this past Sunday. In the next visit she was so enthusiastic in ways I haven't seen before and said she felt the heavy backpack lift off of her when she entered the chapel. It was another testimony to me that we really do need to be nourished by the word of God every week.

It had been a very long day and we had just finished our last appointment of the night with an hermana before going back to the house. I'm not sure if this was so funny to me because I was so tired or what but I laughed so hard. Anyways, her two young boys ran through the door and said they wanted to show us something before we left. One was so cute and chubby and the other really scrawny and tiny. So they turn on some music and the chubby one starts doing these choreographed moves all perfectly while the skinny one just starts jumping around everywhere. He eventually starts doing these very impressive roundhouse kicks all over the place and I'm positive he had no idea which way he was facing and kicks the chubby one a bunch of times, but it didn't even phase him. He just kept on dancing all perfectly. Both of them just totally in their own zone. hahah oh man, it was a good laugh. 

familia lleiva that took us to the snow

My Zone