Monday, January 30, 2017

Mixed Emotions

hola familia!
espero que tuviesen una semana de gozo y alegria :) (I hope you had a week of happiness and joy)

 Last Wednesday, we had a worldwide missionary conference with some of the apostles. The First Presidency has made a few changes to the horario (schedule). We now get to choose when we are going to have comp study and instead of planning in the night we plan in the morning. That way if we need it, we can go to sleep a little bit earlier. We also get to start P day a bit earlier. That way we can finish all we need to do. Honestly, P day is the most stressful day of the week... as well as Sunday.

We are so blessed. I decided to watch the conference in Spanish instead of en ingles. Haha it was awesome. It was me and all the Latinos of the zone. I experienced this last general conf when I watched it in Spanish as well instead of English.

There is something that is missing when you see a general authority but you hear another voice. We are so blessed to be able to hear and listen and understand the prophet and the apostles. It’s just not the same when there is a voice-over. Many of the Latinos want to learn English so they too can listen to the profeta and hear HIS voice. 

The next day the hnas from Cohyique came to stay at our house. All of the mission gathered in Puerto Montt because ELDER STEVENSON, one of the new apostles came to talk to us. It was AWESOME!!!! We got to shake his hand and I testify that he is a man called of God.

He talked about the theme of this year as a worldwide missionary force, “Teach repentance and baptize converts.” It was good. Then at the end he bore his apostalic witness of Christ. IT WAS SOOO POWERFUL. The spirit bore witness to me again, that he really is a man called of God to help further the work.

One thing that I like that he said was that we need to MOVE the work, not just DO the work. As member missionaries, think about that. What are you doing to MOVE the work? Just doing it, just being a member is not good enough. We need to act. We need to work. We need to MOVE.

It was also awesome because afterwards we all ate lunch as a mission. All 180 of us. There are so many people that I don’t know... I was able to see mija hna Cookson again for the first time in 3 cambios. She’s awesome. Still in Rio de la Mano... she told me that Marta is now 2nd counselor in the Relief Society and is teaching lessons!!!! And that Dennis is coming to church again, this time on his own and Korin as well! I thought their baptism was neat, but there is no greater joy than to hear that they are still active, WITH CALLINGS!!!! That made me soooooo happy. And one of the hnas from Fitz Roy also told me that Libardo is attending and is preparing for the priesthood and that Luis Eduardo is preparing to go on a MISSION!!!! Also Cristina from Futrono sent me a letter and wrote that she too is preparing to go to the temple in 6 months to be sealed to her parents!!!!!!!!

I thought it was cool to see all these people progress and be baptized, but nothing beats the joy that I feel to hear that they are still progressing. They are keeping the fire alive by doing the small things. They are fighting for eternal life. Man, I am so happy. I hope to feel the same joy when I come home and reconnect with the ward and old member friends.  I feel like Alma when he found himself with the sons of Mosiah after 14 years and that he was so happy because they were still brothers in the Lord.

I’m going to have to work the moment I get home because I promised all my friends here that I will be with them as they go through the temple for the first time. The mission is the best thing ever. It was also awesome to see hna Valle again. She finishes this cambio with hna Cordoba, in 9 days.... crazy... she is one of my favorite comps. Mom, I want to room with her in BYU-I.

Man, I wish I could just bottle up some joy and send it to you guys. The scriptures are so true because they are real! I am so glad I still have time on the mission. hna Cordoba is really sad to leave. It’s hard... it’s really hard. I never want to leave. 

Something profound that our ward mission leader said "pidimos por ayuda de rodillas. recibimos ayuda de pie" (we ask for help on our knees. we receive help on our feet). Today is the the day! The tank is clean! The tank is clean!? Jake, name that movie. Haha but seriously. Today’s the day now’s the time, who’s on the Lords side who?  NOW is the time to show! I am so grateful for the gospel in my life. I am so grateful for my mission. I have truly opened my eyes. I am so blessed.

We are so safe in the states. It’s hard when your mission life is safe and better than your real life back home. For me a mission was a step down in living circumstances. For many it is a step up. We are so blessed.

I know that Christ lives. He is my Savior y yo lo seguire. Amo este evangelio. Amo las escrituras. Amo la mision. El secreto de la felicidad es obediencia a los mandamientos de Padre Celestial. Testifico que el es nuestro Padre y nos ama. (I will follow Him. I love this gospel. I love the scriptures. I love the mission. The secret to happiness is obedience to Heavenly Father's commandments. I testify that He is our Father and He loves us.)

les amo mucho. SONRIEN DISFRUTEN ESTE TIEMPO (ENJOY THIS TIME) and serve everyone you see. 

i love you!

We went to a museo

It was really hot so we bought a watermelon for dinner


Monday, January 23, 2017

Hot mama it's finally summer!

soaking up the sun

esta chica
hola familia!

IT IS SO HOT HERE! And the sun is sooo strong. Remember a few years ago when a bunch of people were freaking out because there is a hole in the ozone? Welll.... that hole just so happens to be directly over southern Chile.

I feel like I walk outside and 2 minutes later I’m fried. I’m going to die of skin cancer.

And lung cancer because everyone smokes cigarettes and weed. Second hand smoke is a big problem here.

But, I might actually die first from diabetes or clogged arteries because they put salt and oil on EVERYTHING. But the fun thing about summer is that there are tons of tourista and gringos!!! It’s sooo weird. There was a gringo family from Rancho Cucamonga at church yesterday. The dad served here 40 years ago and came with his family... and it’s cool to because there are tons of street performers now, dancing and doing crazy things for money. I’ll send a video next week.

But on a happier note... I want to share something awesome that happened a couple days ago with our lesson with Virginia and Edward. I talked about them the email last. Anyways, Monday after emailing we went and had FHE with them. They are sooo great!! Edward wants to go back to church and get his life back in order. Virginia never has been religious but has told us that a few things have passed in her life in the past month or two and now she wants to learn.

We taught about the importance of reading the scriptures and praying and going to church. It was great and the Spirit was definitely there. It was awesome. Then on Friday, we went back and taught the Restoration with our ward mission leader. It was awesome because when we talked about the church that Christ set up, we also talked about baptism and the importance of being baptized.

Edward then shared his experience of being baptized and said that it was so beautiful, an experience in which he felt complete and clean and very happy. We then invited Virginia to be baptized and she accepted! We then challenged her for the 25 of February and at first she seemed a little hesitant, but by the end of the lesson, she was beaming and even said that she can’t wait for her baptism!

The moment was mas especial fue cuand ella empezo a compartir su tesimonio con nosotros (more special when she began to share her testimony with us). She told us that from the moment that we walked into her house on Monday, her small one-room home has had a different feeling to it. That every time she reads in the pamphlet or sees us or when we come in, she feels like the room gets brighter.

She then told us that her baby of 11 months has always had trouble sleeping, but when we left on Monday, he slept perfectly through the night and all the nights following.

She then told us that they are really worried because she has tumors in her breasts. They act like cancer but are not and many times during the week she has a lot of pain. On Friday before we came, her chest began to hurt really bad. So bad that she began to cry and Edward said that they should go to the hospital. She said, “no, wait until the hermanas come and share and then we can go.”

Virginia said that when we began to sing Families are Forever, the pain began to ease, and now she has absolutely no pain. Then, the thing that made me get emotional, was when she told us that when we walked in the first time on Monday, she saw two people, me and my comp, but she felt the presence of 3 people. And tonight when we walked in, she saw three people, me, my comp, and our mission leader, but that she felt the presence of someone else as well. 

They came to church on Sunday. Edward said that he finally felt good again, happy, and clean. Virginia said that it was so bright and beautiful. She also asked us if it was okay that she invited her mom to her baptism :D and to church :D

Miracles do exist. People can change.

Edward told us that when he met Virginia for the first time 3 years ago, she didn’t believe in God and wanted nothing to do with religion. With time, trials and a less active, but still spiritual boyfriend, her heart was softened and she began to feel the hunger of her spirit.

This huge change that she went through, so that she would accept to listen to us (the fourth time that missionaries have talked to her) was all thanks to a member.

How great is your calling, member missionary work. Of all the people I’ve seen baptized  and/or accept the Gospel is because they knew someone who was a member who had shared something with them. How great is your call, like it says in Mosiah 18 “…to stay as a witness of God in all times in all things and in all places.”

As the world grows darker and darker, those with the truth in their soul grow brighter and brighter. We are, even as Christ said, a light upon a hill, so let your light so shine before all men, that they might see your good works and glorify your Father which art in Heaven. Oh how awesome it is to be a missionary. How awesome that it is a call for life. 

I love Chile. I love my mission. I love the trials and the tests, the light, and the joy. I’ve never been so happy. I’ve never been so sad. I am eternally grateful for this time that I have to consegrarme al Padre Celestial. Se que Èl vive, que nos ama y que nos da lo que necesitamos para poder progresar y lorgar nuestro potencial divina. ¿Has logrado tu potencial hoy? (Get to Heavenly Father. I know that he lives, that He loves us and that He gives us what we need to progress and to live our divine potential. Have you achieved your potential today?)

Man, I just want to send you a bag full of my joy that I have... you all need to come to Chile, that where the magic happens... 

Oh, and thank you Bennetts!!! I got your Christmas letter!!! Thank you so much! I’m writing one to you guys so you should probably get it in about a month (if it doesn’t get lost in the mail :)

Tell everyone in the ward that I say hi and love them and thank them for being in Church on Sunday.

love you all soo much! les ammmmmoooooo

Add caption

we were walking down a hill in centro and  wasn't looking at the ground and my foot got caught in a hole. I messed up my knee and cut up my leg. Luckily it is healing pretty fast and I only had to spend one day in the house icing.

the unlucky hole

Monday, January 16, 2017


hola fan club,

Just want you to know I am eating a really delicious empanada right now :)))

This week fleeeeew by (just like every other week...)  It’s getting harder because hna Cordoba has 3 weeks left. Killing a companion is one of the toughest things about the mission.

One, because muchas veces (many times) your companion starts to relax and get trunky and doesn’t want to work.

Two, because they are always talking about home and their plans.

Three, everyone is always asking her, “How do you feel?" "What will you do when you get home?" "Are you excited to see your family?”

LUCKILY the first and second points don’t apply to the hna Cordoba. She still is a trabajadora (worker) and we are having sooo much success :) but the inevitable is that her time is coming to an end and I can’t wait to see you guys either... but the home sickness will pass....

This week we were very blessed to see many miracles! Right now, we have four entire families in teaching!!!! It is soooo awesome! Really the family is ordained by God and Padre Celestial desea que todas las familias puedan ser eternas (Heavenly Father wants all families to be eternal). It’s such a thrill sharing the gospel with the mom AND dad AND kids present. This is the first time in my mission that I’ve had this opportunity. Usually it’s the women or moms that listen and the dads are hiding or want nothing to do with us.... I love families!!!! 

I want to tell you about a miracle that happened yesterday. We were knocking door in a dusty dirt road. We knocked one door and the lady let us in. She told us that she just wants to hear our message and that’s it because she only let us in because she knows that the mission is really hard and that many people don’t want to listen.

Not the greatest reason to let us in, pero bueno (but ok), we’ll take it.  

We begin to ask her questions about what she believes in and what not. She shared some things and then we started talking about the Plan of Salvation and that families can be together forever. She then began to "share" her point of view and I just about died of depression.

I tried to share with her that the Gospel brings hope to the people and every time I tried to say something she would cut me off and tell us, “no you’re wrong because of this and this and this.”

.... apparently it’s our fault that there are ghosts and demons here on the earth because the ghost and demons are those who have died and whose family members can’t leave them in peace because they are thinking about them so much so they turn into a ghost or demon and are forever condemned to haunt this earth....  

It’s a good thing that I still have time on the mission because I need to develop more patience and love,..... I was fuming in the lesson so I decided to let my comp do all the talking , or at least try to defend us and teach something but the lady didn’t want to hear it so we left.

I was trying to regain my cool when we passed a young couple with their baby. We stopped to talk to them and the first thing that the dad said was, “Wow! You know what, we were just talking about Jesucristo and why it is so important to have faith in Him. I was baptized in your church years ago and have been having the feeling that I need to come back, but this time with my wife and kid.” 


We got their info and we have a lesson set up with them tonight at 7:30. It was an awesome little miracle. When we do our part and work, the Lord blesses us and allows us to see these miracles and bless the lives of many people.

We had interviews with Presidente Isom this week. It went great! He told me that I can ask to extend but the answer is no :( so my home date is June 16 (Sorry Kyle…That’s your high school graduation day!) I am so grateful for Presidente Isom. He is such a great example of service and faith. 

We are going to see a ton of changes in missionary work. We are going to have a worldwide missionary broadcast 25 de Enero that announces all the changes that are being made in the missionary handbook. One of them is that now we get to make our own horario (schedule). I don’t know all the deets but it sounds like we will have much more freedom in choosing at what time we do personal study, comp study and language study.... it’s cool, but I don’t know.... it will be interesting.


Happy birthday and big shout out to Russell!!! Thank you so much for helping me with the work here in Chile. I love you and miss you tons, but it’s been fun to feel you and see you again. Keep doing what you are doing.

deseo que tengan una feliz semana y compartan el Evangelio con MUCHOS!!!! (I wish you have a happy week and share the Gospel with MANY!!!!)

les amo!

Monday, January 9, 2017

another weekcomeand gone.....

hola familia!

comoestan_ sooothis computerSTINKS.thespace bar doesn’twork verywellandiamlosing my patience tryingto write to my mission presidente sooooo sorry....but I’lljustbe sending pics this week of what happenedlastweek 

(Karissa’s Dad and I told her we were fine with the spacebar problem and that we wanted more information before she sent pictures. We told her we’d try to decipher her new code for Family Home Evening).

hahahafineFHEactivityfortonight.thisweekwasreallygood.wesawalotofmiraclesandwewereabletohelpalotofpeople.iwant to tellyouabouta coolexperiencethatwe had... so partofthemissionrulesisthatwe cantgoincars unless thereisanotherwoman withus. Wehaveaninvestigador, Mouricio,that livesreallyfaraway and doesn’thaveacar.he attendedchurch for the firsttimethisSunday. buttheprocessingettinghimto churchwas CRAZY!weplannedon takingacolectivotohis house and thenamalememberthat liveskindofnearhimwasgoingtomeetusathishousealsoto driveustothechurch.wehadanotherhermanathatwasgoingto gowithusbut 20minutesbeforewe weregoingtopass byherhousetogowithhershecalledus andtold us that herhusbandwassickandthat she couldn’t go... sooowebegan callingallthe hnasthatweknew...nobody couldgo. wedecidedto walk and passby foronemorehermanathat liveskindofnearour house.we passedby and she told us, “welli haven’tdonemymakeupandi’mstillgettingready,but thisismoreimportantthanthat so let’svamos!” itwasawesome!and wewentwith her.wethen hadtowait foracolectivo topass by.... we waitedfor about 15mintues. itwasinterestingbecause we werereallylatefortimewaiting foracolectivo andpassing by forthe hnaButi butwehadacalmpeacefulfeeling that wewouldmakeitontime.andwedid! wewereabletogettomouricio’shouseontime and the othermember cameontimeandwewereabletogotochurch.sacramentmeetingwasfastandtestimonymeetingandwas soooo powerful. it totallyblew mouricio, the inverstigator,away. heisso prepared....we’ve onlyhadone lessonwithhimand heacceptedgoingto church,which usuallyis the hardestcompromisoforthe people. wepassedbyyesterdaytoseehowhewasand whathethoughtof the church.he saidthathestillhas alotof questionsbut manyhave beenanswered.weinvitedhimto be baptizedandhesaidifallhisquestionsgetansweredYES!!!right nowhisgoalis28deenero. heissoooprepared.

welll...sorrybut imjustgoingtosendpicsbecause thisisreallybotherningme...

(In case you can't read "hashtag," here it is with all the appropriate spaces!)

como estan_ sooo this computer STINKS. The space bar doesn’t work very well and I am losing my patience trying to write to my mission presidente sooooo sorry....but I’ll just be sending pics this week of what happened last week 

Hahaha fine FHE activity for tonight.

This week was really good. We saw a lot of miracles and we were able to help a lot of people. I want to tell you about a cool experience that we had...

So part of the mission rules is that we can’t go in cars unless there is another woman with us. We have an investigador, Mouricio, that lives really far away and doesn’t have a car. He attended church for the first time this Sunday. But the process in getting him to church was CRAZY!

We planned on taking a colectivo (taxi) to his house and then a male member that lives kind of near him was going to meet us at his house also to drive us to the church. We had another hermana that was going to go with us but 20 minutes before we were going to pass by her house to go with her she called us and told us that her husband was sick and that she couldn’t go... sooo we began calling all the hnas that we knew...nobody could go.

We decided to walk and pass by for one more hermana that lives kind of near our house. We passed by and she told us, “Well I haven’t done my makeup and I’m still getting ready, but this is more important than that so let’s vamos!” It was awesome! And we went with her.

We then had to wait for a colectivo to pass by.... we waited for about 15mintues. It was interesting because we were really late for time waiting for a colectivo and passing by for the hna Buti, but we had a calm peaceful feeling that we would make it on time, and we did! We were able to get to Mouricio’s house on time and the other member came on time and we were able to go to church.

Sacrament meeting was fast and testimony meeting and was soooo powerful. It totally blew Mouricio, the inverstigator, away.  He is so prepared....we’ve only had one lesson with him and he accepted going to church, which usually is the hardest compromise for the people.

We passed by yesterday to see how he was and what he thought of the church. He said that he still has a lot of questions but many have been answered. We invited him to be baptized and he said if all his questions get answered YES!!! Right now his goal is 28 de Enero. He is sooo prepared.

rain rain and more rain....but hey, at least there's beauty

I'm going black

flash flood! Tell Kim B Clark to get he ark!

a young woman that accompanies us and is prepping for the mission

this happened
like 5 weeks ago...someone egged our house


district Christmas party


The Earthquake on Christmas

Puerto Montt and the volcanoes

making our new year's doll

New Year's roast lamb
today we went on a biking trip with the young women. My bottom hurts

biking around  PUERTO MONTT

its a beautiful city

Monday, January 2, 2017

venid y adoremos a Cristo Jesus (Come and Worship Jesus Christ)

Hola Familia!


To start off, I’ll tell you about what happened Christmas Eve. We were invited to have dinner with the family Veloso. They are amazing! Both parents returned missionaries and it was pure laughs and fun that night. We had to be in the house at 11 and at 12 midnight, with the tradition, we opened our gifts.

Zone activity. Singing Christmas songs in the plaza on Christmas eve

The next morning (Christmas) at 11 we had church. There were about 15 people that showed up of our ward of 120...

We were listening to the first speaker when we felt a truck pass by and the building began to shake a little. But then it began to shake more and more. The fans on the ceiling were swaying every which way and I got really motion sick.

Afterwards a few people began to freak out and our Bishop went to the microphone and said that we need not fear because the chapel is the safest building to be in in Puerto Montt right now. It was a big testimony to all of us that yes, the chapels and houses of the Lord are the safest places to be. I’m so grateful for the protection of the Lord in His houses.

The Bishop resumed the meeting and just as the speaker began where she left off in her talk, everyone’s phones started beeping. The Chilean National Warning System was telling everyone they had to get to higher ground immediately in case the earthquake prompted a tsunami…

We went back to our flat to get our emergency gear and then went to a member’s house up on the hill until the tsunami warning lifted.

Then I was able to Skype you!

El 28 we had cambios. I’m still in Puerto Montt with the loca colombiana (Hermana Cordoba :) I’m going to kill her. (Mission slang for I’m going to be her last compañera). It will be fun and I know I’m going to learn a lot if this cambio is anything like last cambio.

On New Year’s Eve, the family Veloso called us in the morning to invite us for dinner again. It’s a Chilean tradition to cenar (dine) or have a big dinner for the holidays.

For Navidad (Christmas), it’s traditional to have chicken with potato salad and for dessert peaches with cream.

For New Year’s it’s tradition to have lamb with boiled potatoes and ice cream for dessert. I’ve never eaten so much lamb! And it is a meat really heavy and really fatty. There is a special way to cook it so it’s more dry so you don’t eat a lot of grease and it’s cooking it outside on a stick, like a bbq. Luckily I didn’t get sick but my comp did. It was really greasy and heavy for the stomach.

We had to be in the house at 10. We planned and then we made an año viejo (old year). It’s a tradition in Colombia. They make a life size doll out of old clothes and put powder inside it to make little explosions. At midnight they burn their año viejo.

We were going to burn ours on the roof at midnight instead of in the street because we live right next to a dead weed field and that would be bad to set the field on fire... (cough DAD). But then my voice of reason (hna Cordoba) told me that we shouldn’t burn it...

At midnight they shot fireworks from the ocean but we weren’t able to see a lot. We climbed out the 2nd story window and were able to see a little bit over the roofs of the buildings.  

A tradition they have here is that on midnight, you leave your house and walk around the block with your suitcase and that means that during the year your will have the chance to travel. They also wear yellow underwear to represent more money in the year and eat lentils which represent enough food for the year. 

New Year’s day was hard emotionally, physically and spiritually. It rained about the whole day. No one wanted to let us in because they were celebrating with their family. Hna Cordoba wanted to be in her home because in Colombia there are tons of people out and everyone is happy celebrating and loud. Chileans are a little more cold, pass more time in their house and are very quiet.

I wanted to be in my bed crying and with you guys. But before you get more depressed, I want to tell you about an experience that I had this week.

We contacted an older lady on the street and began talking to her. After about 5 minutes she began crying and said that her husband had left her and 2 of her kids have died and of her other 2 kids, one spouse just recently died and the other one has cancer. We gave her some words of alivio (relief) and comfort and set up a time to meet with her.

Later in the week we passed by and she shared with us that she doesn’t believe in life after death nor in the resurreccion. that when we die, that ends all. How terribly sad!! I almost started crying just listening to her. We taught her the plan of salvation and I had the opportunity to testify to her that there is a life after death and thanks to Jesus Christ, we will all be resurrected and if we are faithful have the opportunity to live with our families forever. I felt the spirit testify of my words and felt so much peace and hope and comfort for what I know.

After wards my comp asked her how do you feel? She told us with a new light in her eyes that she feels hope. And for the first time in a very long time peace. I know that my Savior lives. I know that Russell is good, happy and working with Grandpa Hess in the Spirit World. No, it doesn’t make his absence easy, but it does make it bearable. I am so grateful for the gospel in the my life and the hope and peace that it brings to me.

I love my Savior and I know that He descended below all so that He can know perfectly how to succor us and give us the help and strength that we need.

This year I chose a scripture to be my theme for the year, like what the youth have. My scripture theme for this year is Doctrine and Covenants 82:19. “Buscando cada cual el bienestar de su projimo y haciendo todas las cosas con la mira puesta unicamente en la gloria de Dios.” (“Every man seeking the interest of his neighbor, and doing all things with an eye single to the glory of God.") Is this how you look on the glory of God? What is your scripture theme for this year?

I love you guys so much and am so grateful that we were able to talk this navidad! Keep being good. Keep being honest, loving, forgiving, understanding, longsuffering, and patient. I know that this is God’s church and that He loves all His children. I love you and this Gospel. 

The mission is the best choice ever!!

foto of all the hna leaders and zone leaders in the mission menos those from punta arenas and coiyllaque because they were skyping in