Monday, November 28, 2016

Paraiso (Paradise)

hola familia!

Hope you had a great Thanksgiving! We had district meeting on Thanksgiving and celebrated with banana bread. 

Can I just say that I love my new sector! It is huge and we aren’t able to have as many lessons in the week because we spend a lot of time walking, but it is gorgeous! I have been so blessed. In all of my sectors, I have been able to see the ocean or a huge body of water. I love CHILE. 

I want to tell you a few miracles we saw this past week. 

On Wednesday, a member told us that it was forecasted to rain the entire week. When it rains, it pours and we are outside for hours because no one wants to let 2 soaking girls in their house. Thursday it was my turn to pray before we left for the day. I prayed and asked Padre that if it be possible, and His will, that it could only rain when we were inside a house. We walked over 6 miles that day and it poured... every time we were in a house! And every time when we were closing or saying the last prayer, the rain would stop.

It was awesome to see this miracle and have it confirmed that yes God  is real, yes He loves us, yes, He knows our needs and when we pray in faith, EVERYTHING is possible. Jaja the next day, we didn’t have as much luck, but we had a fun wet day, enjoying the beauty of a wet world, the smells, sounds, and tastes of pouring rain.

Another miracle; we were late to get in for the night because we were in a lesson and we decided to take a taxi home. We were outside in Centro (downtown) Puerto Montt waiting for a taxi to pass by. About 15 passed in the space of 40 minutes and all were in use, so they didn’t stop for us. It was now even later and downtown isn’t the safest at night. I said a quick prayer that a taxi could pass by in the next 10 minutes that was free. 8 minutes later a free taxi passed by and we were able to make it home safe and sound.

Some many call it coincidence... some many say that it is chance, but I am here to tell you that it was a blessing from a loving Padre Celestial. He hears our prayers. He knows our circumstances. I testify that He answers our prayers when we pray in faith.

In my studies today in chap. 4 of Preach my Gospel, it talks about praying in faith. Many times we only pray with real intent when we want something to happen or we need something. All the other times that we pray, we pray traditionally: it’s time to eat, so let’s pray, it’s time to sleep so let’s pray, it’s time to go so let’s pray.

We pray A TON in the mission and I have made the mistake many times to pray traditionally, saying words without real intent, without pre-thought, without sincerity. If we really believe in God, if we really believe that He exists and that He is our Father, we ought to talk to Him as we talk to our earthly fathers, mother, friends, family. Because He is a person too. I’ll never forget something that one of my comps said to a member,

“Do you believe in God?”


“Do you believe that He hears your prayers?”

“Of course!”

“Then why do you pray the same way every time you talk to Him?”   

If we really believe that He is real and hears our prayers we ought to pray in that manner!

Another little miracle

We have an investigator that is living with her boyfriend. She wants to get baptized and in order to do so, she has to repent of breaking the Law of Chasity and get married or stop living together. They had plans to get married but her boyfriend wants to do it in May so they have more time to plan and save for the wedding. She doesn’t have a house to move to nor money to rent a house for 6 months. Her family kicked her out because she is taking the lessons and listening to us.

That’s the real reason why they began living together in the first place.

Last week, we talked to the boyfriend about getting married next month and doing a little fiesta and then having the real wedding fiesta when they get sealed in the temple. He said he would think about it. hna Cordoba and I decided to fast for them and that something could happen so that she could be baptized 17 de Diciembre. We met with her yesterday and she told us that her mom had an accident and has asked that she return home to take care of her because the dad works outside the city during the week and is not home.

Obviously not the idealist situation, but it was awesome, because now she is welcomed back home, she has a place to live and her boyfriend can take the 6 months he needs to save and plan the wedding.

It’s been a fun week of miracles. I love you all! Hope you have a great week!


Monday, November 21, 2016

Hey Hey Hey

hola famillia! 

So that happened…just a normal day in Fitz Roy... walking along the sideway, when a dog came over and decided to taste hna Valle’s leg. I kicked it in the side but it still did some damage... yeah, I’m definitely a cat person now. We went to the hospital and she has to go back every 3 days for shots... for the next 3 weeks. Not fun.

Our old district in the Patagonia. Two of the elders lived on an island and have had to skype for district meeting. 

 My birthday was fun :) The elders from my district bought me a cake and sang me happy birthday. Then I went to bite the cake and my wonderful comp slammed my face in it again. Only this time is was a soft cake :) life’s good here. 

I love my new area... it’s very different. It’s a huge city and my sector is ginormous! There used to be 4 companionships in my sector but now there’s just one... I love my comp too. Se llama hna Cordoba y es de COLOMBIA! I think that the Lord is trying to tell me something... I love Colombianos. Woop woop! She’s awesome… has lots of flavor and spice. It’s cool because she was just comps with hna Braithwaite (who is now en casa!!!). Life’s good... 

I’ll be hna leader until pres. releases me. Hopefully I will get to train my last two transfers instead of being hna leader, or be a missionary normal. That would be awesome. 

We have 2 zones that we are in charge of my ward is HUGE!!!! I don’t know how to act! There are 150 members that attend. There is a bishop AND two counselors. There is someone to play the piano, lead music, we have a ward mission leader... had correlation meeting for the first time in my mission... haha it’s really weird. I kind of don’t like it. I like small wards. We get to serve more and actually know all of the members. Here I feel lost. Pero bueno! 

I haven’t received the birthday package yet... 

What am I doing for Thanksgiving? What’s Thanksgiving? jajaj I’ll be working :) 

The other hnas are awesome! DAD there is a girl here from New Zealand! She’s cool. 

With the problem hna... it’s sad... she went home the same person she was. A sad waste of 18 months.... I wish her the best of luck. 

It is sooo hot here! I forgot that the sun is hot. Yep... it’s summer time! Puerto Montt is a beautiful city that is right on a huge lake. There are 2 active volcanoes in the distance and tons of people. My first day here I got super sun burnt... haha you know it’s too a long time in Punta Arenas when you forgot that the sun is hot. 

I’ve been walking on bruised feet for the past week because my foot tendon is so tight. I have like major planter fasciitis. The area is huge and we walk a lot. Trying to see if members have bikes we can borrow because we have a few little pueblos and to walk from one to another wastes about 45 minutes. 

Oh, yes, I print out the emails. I have every email that you’ve sent me mom and dad and bros printed out and saved :) life’s good :) enjoying the heat... ummm my brain is kind of clouded from the heat and I’m still trying to get over being sick so excuse my rambling. I feel a little better... I came down with a nasty cold... but it’s okay. No pain, no gain...Glad to see that everyone is happy and healthy! 

JAKE have fun driving! 

I think this just about sums up my life (shout out to Elder Porter. haha thanks for the poem) 

A mission is a strange experience, a trial and a test 
A mission throws at you the worst, yet teaches you the best. 
I've never been so happy, I've never been so depressed, 
I've never felt so forsaken, I've never been so blessed. 
I've never been so confused, things have never been so clear. 
I've never felt my Heavenly Father so distant, He's never been so near. 
I've never been so discouraged, I've never been so full of hope. 
I feel I could go on forever, I've come to the end of my rope. 
I've never had it quite so easy, I've never had it quite so tough. Things have never been so smooth, things have never been so rough. 
I've never been though such a deep valley, I've never been to so high a peak. 
I've never felt so sure and strong, I've never felt so weak. 
I've never had so many ups, I've never had so many downs, 
I've never had so many smiles, I've never had so many frowns. 
I've never been so lonely, I've never had so many friends. 
Boy! I hope this is over soon! Gosh! I hope it never ends! 

The Book of Mormon is essential in the conversion of an investigator. It’s the sure way to know if Jose Smith was a prophet or not. If this book is true, then he did in fact translate it from the gift and power of God. If it’s true then everything else that happened is also true. If not, then everything is a lie and we are like every other church in the world. The only way to know is to read a bit and put it to the test. But so much more than that, it changes lives. It was written for our day. It changes people because it invites the Espiritu Santo to be our guide. It is another testament of Jesu Christo. Like Jose Smith says, we can grow closer to God by reading this book than by reading any other book. Testifico que el Libro de Mormon es verdad. Es la respuesta por todad las pregunta que tenemos. El libro de mormon me ha ayudado muchisimo aqui en la mision. por mis ivestigadores y por mi misma. es clave de nuestra religion. Al estudiar el libro de mormon y pregutnar con verdadera intension si realamente es un libro de Dios, su vida cambiarà. tratalo! queire saber por que estoy feliz? Por que estoy en chile? Por que tengo amino, al pesar de todas las cosas que han pasado, cuantas personas que make fun of me, cuantas personas that slam the door in my face, that spit on us, that hate us. How many days that I have walked through snow at 8 pm with snow boots soaked, been outside freezing for 7 hours because its pouring rain no one will let us in because we are sopping wet? I would not give my time, my energy, my health, 18 months of my life for a book that is false. I am here because I know and testify that the Book of Mormon is true. Because when I was 11 years old I put the book to the test and asked God if it was all real. And 2 months later, I got my response through a father’s blessing. It is essential in conversion and it is always the first thing to go, to be put off to the side. One of my fears was coming home and becoming less active. You want to know the secret? 
Read the Book of Mormon every day. 
Say your prayers. 
Go to church. 
Your life will be so much better. You will find a new strength, the strength and power of God. I love the Book of Mormon and will seal my testimony with my blood if need be, and like Jose Smith and Elder Holland, I stand as a witness of the power of the Book of Mormon because I have seen it change my life and the lives of sooo many people. Hopeless people. Drunks on the street. People with no goals. People with pain, with questions, with regret. 
 I love the Book of Mormon.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Going Up North...

hola familia,

How was your week? Mine was awesome!!! Thank you for the birthday wishes, it passed very well! One of the members, Jorge (good times and cousin to Libardo who got baptized last week) invited us for a birthday surprise. He and Libardo and his brothers cooked us typical food from Colombia and we had a FHE (Family Home Evening) there. They are awesome!

It’s a Chilean tradition that the birthday person gets to bite the cake before cutting it and while they bite it, someone shoves their face in the cake, so as I bit into the cake, hna Valle graciously shoved my face in the cake. There was caramel all around it so I go a nice clump of caramel in my hair.

The guys thought it was hilarious and were very surprised that I didn’t get all mad about it and that I shrugged it off haha...  

I’m so sorry, please don’t hate me, I’m not going to write a lot because my head is pounding and I think I’m getting a migraine. I’m having trouble concentrating and don’t feel good at all... Mom, I’ll answer your questions next week with a huge gigantic letter, I promise. 

Oh, and we have combios.... :´( I’m going to Puerto Montt! :)It is up north, about 2 hours from Osorno. Last I heard it was pouring rain there! haha but no wind, That’s good :) I’m really sad to leave Punta Arenas. This feels like my home here. I have family here and people that I love. It’s going to be really hard saying goodbye. I think this is one of the hardest parts of serving a mission...  

Sorry it’s so short, I had a huge list of stuff I wanted to write but I really don’t feel good... 

Have a great week! Love you all!
rosa lo our investigadora

when there's not a girl in the house...

on Tuesday we were walking and saw the voting through a window... so we stopped to see who was winning...

Elder Amaya is awesome

Zone activity last week, making completos

Friday, November 11, 2016

¿chile o colombia?

Hola familia!

How’s it going? Hope this finds you healthy and warm!

Sooo for all you that don’t know anything about Punta Arenas, winters are dark and cold. Summers and bright and freezing. Jaja

I thought it was going to warm up but I was wrong. It is sooo crazy here! It’s just the beginning of spring and already the sun doesn’t set until 9:30. In the middle of summer they say that there’s only 3 hours of darkness. Talk about being at the END OF THE WORLD. It’s awesome.

The sun is really strong here but we get no heat. Haha I’m going to come home with skin cancer. And lung cancer. Because everyone smokes and 2nd hand smoke is a problem.

Why don’t we feel the heat of the sun you ask? Buena pregunta (good question).  Because it is sooo windy!!! The Marilyn Monroe struggle is real. But seriously. I’ve never felt wind this strong before. And it is always windy. A nice freezing wind that kissed the icebergs in the distant estrecho de magallanes. I love it. It’s hard and I’m cold. But #dasboot I can do anything ;)

En Centro they have to put up rope along all the buildings so you can hold on while you are walking. There were a few times where we would be walking and then the wind would change and we would get pushed into a bush or the street.

We haven’t experienced it yet, but there are some days when we can’t leave the house because it is so windy and dangerous because stuff like street signs and roofs and trees take flight. It’s an adventure.

Also, we are at the start of tourist season. It’s funny because we can tell who’s not from around here because they are bundled up with hats, gloves, and huge jackets. Haha and we are walking around with a windbreaker and a skirt.

¿chile o colombia? We had a baptism last Saturday!! His name is Libardo and he is another Colombiano!

So far the majority of people I’ve taught and have been baptized are Colombianos. They are awesome!! So humble and meek. So cheerful and positive despite all the trials and disadvantages they face in their country and en Chile. Many come here for 3-4 years to send money to their kids and wives in Colombia.

Libardo is amazing!! I love him so much. He is going to be a great leader in the church. We taught him the plan of salvation and when he heard that there are missionaries in the spirit world teaching people (like many of his family members that have been killed) and that he can go to the temple and save them, he almost began crying and told us, “I never knew that! I thought they were lost forever. I need to go to the temple. I need to save my family.” He just got baptized and is already preparing to go to the temple in a year. I’ve never felt so happy to see someone come out of the water. I wish you guys could meet him. And it was awesome because his cousin is a convert of 11 months and had the opportunity to baptize him and give him the Espiritu Santo (Holy Ghost). We are working with his brother and the brothers of his cousin Jorge. (They are the good times family).
Libardo after his lesson on the Plan of Salvation

Libardo and his cousin, Jorge

Luis Edwardo received the priesthood too yesterday! He also is amazing. Got baptized without the support of anyone from his family and yet he has changed soo much. He now is preparing to go on a mission and to the temple. He is such a grande ejemplo (large example). He completely changed his life around when he heard the message of the Restoration and is still facing a lot of problems with his family but he is pushing through and learning little by little, growing precept for precept. I love him too.

Ahhh I am sooo happy!

I feel like I’m going to a new area in two weeks when we have transfers. It is going to be so hard to leave Punta Arenas. I feel like here in Punta Arenas, I became a woman. I have gone through some of the darkest moments in my mission and in my life here in Punta Arenas but I have also gone through the happiest most spiritual moments in my life. I feel like this verse in alma 28 :14 y asi vemos el gran llamamiento de diligencia a los hombres para obrar en las viñas del señor, y asi vemos el gran motivo del dolor, como tambien del gozo.

(And thus we see the great call of diligence of men to labor in the vineyards of the Lord; and thus we see the great reason of sorrow, and also of rejoicing--sorrow because of death and destruction among men and joy because of the light of Christ unto life.) 

tengan una buena semana! les amo!


Thursday, November 3, 2016

It's Halloween?

Hola familia! 

First and for most, I want to say FELIZ CUMPLEAÑOS A MI PAPI!! Dad I love you so much. You are my hero. I am so blessed to have a father like you. Honestly, I knew I was blessed before my mission, but now being here and seeing how other people are "fathers" or hearing the past experiences of comps, members, and investigadores sobre (on) their fathers, I am eternally grateful that you are my daddy. I love you so much and am trying every day to make you and mom proud. I wear my name tag proud. I represent my family bloodline and my Godly bloodline. Words cannot express the gratitude that I have for you. For everything that you have sacrificed so that my brothers, mom and I can be happy. Everything that you have given up so we can feel loved and wanted. You are an example to them all. Thank you for your service and THANK YOU for your example. I don’t know where I would be in the Gospel if it wasn’t for your and mom’s diligence in doing FHE (Family Home Evening) and standing firm in discipline love and obey with exactitude the standards of the Gospel. Thank you for your example and for teaching me always and showing me by your faith and example that the Gospel is true and that God answers prayers. I love you so much and cannot wait to see you again and hear your voice. I love you.

This week was awesome! We worked a lot! Walked a lot! Taught a lot! On Saturday Liset, my investigadora from Rio de la Mano got baptized!! It was awesome!! I am so proud of her. She is such an example of perseverance. All of her family is against it, they do not like the "Mormons" but she knows what she has felt and cannot deny it. I have been meeting some amazing people here like her that are true followers of Jesus Christ. 

Sooo it’s halloween today... haha i think it’s more of a North American holiday because there’s nothing going on here... it’s weird. 

And no se porque (I don’t know why), but on Saturday, I was doing my personal study and looked at my clock and saw that it was Saturday. Then all of the sudden, I got tons of flash backs of camping trips, back packing, races, birthday parties, going to the beach, watching cartoons... everything we used to do on Saturdays "family days" I started wondering what you guys were doing and what you had planned for the Saturday that passed. Thank you mom and dad for never putting us in sports so we could enjoy this time that we have as a family. I miss you guys a lot. And hope you are enjoying life as it comes. 

The family Treihuel invited us over for lunch today. They are awesome. I love them so much. They are my Chilean parents. They have been there for me for everything. I can’t tell you know many times hna Elizabet has wiped tears from my face and hno Danny has lifted up my tired head, both with a smile and a firm embrace. Today was no exception either. Hno Danny gave me a blessing. It was awesome. And another testimony that the blessings really come from Padre Celestial. In it he told me that I need not fear, it is in the hands of the Lord. And during this time to embrace my Savior with a humble heart. I need to remember the covenants of the temple and (this was awesome) remember the promises in my patriarchal blessing—they were given for this time. AND "Padre Celestial quiere que sepas que siempre tienes un angel a su lado, caminando contigo" Heavenly Father wants you to know that you always have an angel by your side, walking with you.

They don’t know about Russell. 

les quiero muchìsimo!

Weed central. All of Punta looks like this

Liset and I

the newest member of la iglesia de Jesucristo de los santos de los ultimos dias

My Chilean Family

Sunday pancakes! first time in 10 monthes! ·tradiciones