Monday, March 27, 2017

Osorno

hola familia!

How was your week? Hopefully it was good :) Thanks for writing Kyle and Jake ;) Joey you’re my favorite brother, I knew I could always count on you!!! and.... HAPPY BIRTHDAY TOMORROW!!! 

So... first off I’ll start by saying that I never wanted to serve in Osorno... but I’m here and I know that I will learn a lot. I feel like I am in downtown LA. It is really weird.

My sector is the richest sector in the mission. The houses are HUGE, there and no dogs in the streets. No trash on the sidewalk. Literally I feel so naked, so uncomfortable.

I think Padre Celestial is preparing me so I don’t have a huge culture shock coming home. I don’t like it.

All the streets are paved. People wear really nice clothes. Outward appearance is important here.

And just about everyone has a fence and a little doorbell that you ring. Next to it is a little voice box so the people can answer without even coming outside. Somehow people feel that if they can’t see you or you can’t see them, then it is oaky to be really rude. It is a really hard sector and I feel like I am in Futrono in that aspect again.

We spent a whole day outside, knocking doors and talking with people on the street. About 10 answered their doors physically and nicely told us that they are already saved. We have no progressing investigadores either.

The ward is really tiny. About 30 come. There are 4 YW and 2 YM. We falt (missed) a lot of priesthood holders. And young people. The majority of members here have about 60 years. There is A LOT of work to do.

My companion is from Sao Paulo, Brazil!!! She has 30 years, but doesn’t really talk a lot. It’s hard because she doesn’t speak a lot of Spanish and has a lot of embarrassment for it. We pass a lot of time thinking our own thoughts.

I’m trying to help her and slowly she is warming up to the language I think I will learn some more patience this transfer. But, a miracle occurred this morning!! She started the conversation!!! It didn’t last long, but she started it!!

I’ve been talking a lot with Padre Celestial, so that is one upside of the situation. But I’m glad to be here. Last week, I was talking and kind of complaining to Papito Dios, and He kindly gave me the confirmation that this is where I need to be and I need to be with her. It was a sweet, peaceful feeling from Padre Celestial that He knows my thoughts and is aware and loves me.

Leaving Puerto Montt was really hard. I love the members there and we had found a ton of people the last transfer. They are going to have many baptisms this transfer!!!!!

Um umn um not much more has happened... half the mission is sick with  a really bad flu bug. My comp woke up today and didn’t feel too well and noow I’m starting to feel weird... 

Sorry it’s not very long.... nothing excitingly new happened this week, just a lot of door knocking and trying develop more charity.

Les amo! Hopefully I’ll have more to tell next week!


forgot to mention that there are no drunks either... no one follows us home at night... I feel too safe!

Monday, March 20, 2017

Mixed Emotions

 just a normal tracting day in Chile


hola familia!!

Just a side note…Kyle, Jake and Joey, if you could please stop writing me so much that would be great. I just don’t have time to read all the letters you (never) write me. Thank you! jeje

This week this week.... many things happened.... first off the bugs and fleas got worse, so we bombed our house. That was fun. From then I’ve only got bitten like 3 more times, so I think it killed the most  part of the fleas in my sleeping bag. Haha it’s funny because they only bite my feet and lower legs. I have like 30 bites.



It’s fun... what next.... we knocked a lot of doors and found an amazing person! Her name is Lisa. She lives with her boyfriend and told us when we went in her house that she is looking for something more and that she wants to make changes in her life.

We invited her to the relief society activity that we had to celebrate the 175 year anniversary and she told us, “Well my church has an activity that night, and I already said I’m going, but I’ll tell them that something came up so I can go with you guys.”

She went and didn’t understand a lot because we had a lesson on why and how the soc soc was formed. (In Spanish, Relief Society is Sociedad de Socorror or soc soc for short). It was really boring and we felt really bad for Lisa.

Then after we ate a ton of food and talked with her and the members she said that she didn’t understand much but that she feels really good here. She feels a peace that she has never felt and she didn’t want to leave the church.

She came on Sunday but had to leave early for work and said the same thing, that she didn’t understand much but she felt a lot of peace and comfort. She’s had a really hard life and I think is a recovering drug user.

Do you guys feel that when you attend church? Before the mission I just went to church because that’s what we do. It wasn’t until high school that I began to feel a peace inside the church and now, every time I enter, I can feel something special, something clean. Do you feel it too?

It is amazing just how strong and pure the peace is to someone outside of the church, how blessed we are to have and experience the same feeling in the walls of our own home and how much more need there is to help others and those around us feel the same peace. The world is so dark. There is so much sadness and darkness. Upon entering the church, we invite peace and light into our lives. No one likes to walk in the dark, especially when we don’t know the path. The church and gospel give us the map, compass and light that we need. INVITE ALL TO COME TO CHURCH!!!!!! 

The soc soc party was on Friday. The day before, on Thursday, I went to my first Chilean wedding. There is a couple that the elders were working with and teaching!!! They are sooo great! On Thursday they got married and on Saturday they got baptized.



The wedding was very causal and very unorganized, but that is how everything is in Chile. I think that the church services and ordinances are the only things in Chile that are actually organized and put into effect well. Enserio (really). But it was really cute.



#trunky dad, have you found me someone to marry yet? Unfortunately we had to leave when the party started but hey... at least they saved us some cake! Their baptism was super special also. They looked soo happy and talked a lot about making plans to go to the temple to be sealed in a year. I am so grateful for this gospel that unites us as a family for time and all eternity. I can’t wait for my wedding. It’s going to be a party.

This gospel is really a gospel of happiness and hope. Life is hard, but with the saving ordinances that we have it makes everything a lot easier. I am so grateful to live in a time and place where we have the temple so close. How often do you go?

The Chileans here go once a year as a ward. It is a 15-hour bus ride to Santiago. On my second day in Puerto Montt we stopped by the church to say goodbye because the members were going on their trip.

They rent a huge bus and all that can, go. 15 hours driving. 24 hours in the temple (they literally stay in the temple all day and night) and then 15 hours back home. Everyone goes as families. I want to be more devoted like them to go to the temple. For them it’s a sacrifice. They are always talking about it, in church and youth nights about the next temple trip and what names they are preparing and who’s going to get sealed, who’s going for the first time. Eduardo too is preparing to go!!!! :) So it looks like I’ll be coming back in diciembre to go through with him.

We have cambios this Wednesday. We got a call from president last night. I’m leaving Puerto Montt  :´(   I’ll be heading up to Osorno! and I’ll be in the same ward as President and Hermana Isom.

Like that's not intimidating....

And I got released as hermana leader. I’ve been called again to train!!! I’ll be training a girl from Brazil. haha looks like I’ll be learning Portuguese!

I’m really sad to leave Puerto Montt. I love the people here. They are sooo amazing. And the members are some of the best friends that I have here. Puerto Montt and Punta Arenas will always have my heart. It is always so hard to leave a sector, to leave your family behind. I hate transfers. Pero bueno... la vida sigue...(life goes on…)

The Volcanoes


Um um um  that pretty much sums up our week. Weather’s been bipolar like always... luckily hasn’t rained too much.

when it decides to rain and you're not prepared


I’ve learned a ton from my 3 cambios here in Puerto. hna Cordoba and hna Adams have taught me a lot and have helped me more fully put off the natural woman in me to become more like Christ. I love this gospel and I love my mission. I never want to go home!!!!

I hope all is well with you guys. Know that I am happy, healthy and fat :D

love you!!!

pics from last week's adventure



when 7:30 is just too early to study and it's freezing


Monday, March 13, 2017

I'm Never Having Daughters

hola familia!



I don’t know what to say in this email.

The only thing that I know is that Padre Celestial loves us. He will never abandon us and will always been there to help us when we so desperately need it.

It sounds like you as well as I have had a pretty crummy week... I’m praying for the Blackledge family. I am so sorry. Mom, reading your email brought up all the old emotions of when we found out that Russell died and the memories of the funeral. I started crying but luckily we were able to go out hiking and we found a cool private beach. Sitting there with nothing but the sounds of the ocean and the birds and feeling the sun on my face helped to heal old wounds that never heal.



We have all had a very stressful week, and maybe right now we can’t fix the outcome or we don’t know how, but that is what I love about this gospel. No matter what happens, we have the hope that in the end, EVERYTHING will be made right. EVERYONE that was obedient and faithful will be happy eternally.

I know that Padre Celestial lives and oh how He loves us. He sent His Son even Jesus the Christ to come and walk in the exact outline of every single footstep. This week He has carried me and my compaƱera. Are you asking Him to do the same for you? It’s free. And it’s the only way that you can overcome this. All He asks is that we ask in faith and obey His commandments. Such a small price for a gran Alivio (great relief). I love Him and am so eternally grateful that He allowed me to be born into a family that also has faith and that He permitted me to come here to Chile, to try my failing best  so that I might bring one or two souls unto Him, knowing far well that I would be the one to experience the greatest change. 

there is always beauty when you look for it! 


I’m going to start with the bad news and end on the good news because that’s how I get myself out of a slump. I allow myself a 5 second pity party and then look at all the blessings and wonders around me.

As the title says, “I’m never having daughters.” Someone before my mission told me that there are sisters and then there are blisters. We had to deal with 6 blisters this week. You ready for this rant???

Okay first off, for all of you that are going on the mission, realize that YOU are PROMISING to GOD that you are going to be OBEDIENTE and follow the mission rules. I do not understand why people go on missions and then are super disobedient. It makes me so mad because you are not only spiritually killing yourself, but you are killing your sector and making you companion suffer, you’re wasting the hermana lideres (leaders) and president’s time. You, yourself, covenanted with God that you would be obedient. Stop wasting the Lord’s time and go to work!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So that just about sums up my week... calling and dealing with very disobediente hermanas. But it was really interesting because we both got a blessing from one of the hermanos in our ward who is awesome. In my blessing he said that the Lord put me here so that I can better develop my leadership skills and learn how to correct people with love.

This is the first time in my mission that I have had to tell a missionary directly to stop doing something or there will be severe consequences. It was intense.... 

On a happier note... presidente put hermanas on the island of Chiloe!!! 



There had been hermanas there about a year ago but they got taken off because it got really dangerous because of prostitution at night and witchcraft. But now things have mellowed out a little bit and he got the revelation to put a companionship back on.

We are now the hna lideres of those sisters so this Tuesday we went to visit them! It was so fun! We had to take an hour bus ride, then we got on a huge boat, while still in the bus. We were able to leave the bus and take pictures. The boat ride was about 45 minutes long and then another 3 hours in bus.






It was sooo cool! We saw about 8 penguins swimming while we were on the boat!! And there were a lot of sea lions. The island was really pretty. And the hermanas are super boss there.




On the way back home, I got really sick and almost threw up... we got home all happy and excited and then the phone calls started coming and the paragraph above sums up what we did for the rest of the week.



We needed a de-stressor this p day so we did what de-stresses us, starting with my companion: there is an hermana in our ward that does facials and pedicures. She did our for free. I got my eyebrows waxed for the first time. It didn’t hurt as bad as I thought it would. Then we got our feet done.

Soooo... when I was in Punta Arenas, my big toe started hurting really bad out of the blue. I wasn’t sure what it was but pressed on. Then about a week later there was a patch of something the color of rust under my toenail. I thought that maybe I had slapped my toenail at night because it felt bruised and this was a bruised toe nail.

With time, my toe nail then started turning green and dead. I thought it was normal part of getting a bruised toenail. Apparently it isn’t.... I have a fungus growing under my toe and now it is starting to grow under 2 more toenails.

Nice.

I have to start a 6 month treatment to kill the fungus and try and save the nail. I guess that’s what you get from walking around with wet humid feet for the past 15 months! Wow I cant believe  have been out 15 months....





My comp was thoroughly de-stressed. Then it was my turn to destress and we went to another isla to go hiking with some elders. It was sooo much fun and it felt so nice to be away from everything. We found a hidden beach and I just sat there listening to the water and birds and smelling the salty air. It did me lots of good. 
I'm so living next to the beach




I love you all so much and hope you have a better week than that of last.


I love nature so much. It's amazing what a good hike will do with true friends.
les amo tanto!

Monday, March 6, 2017

the miracle of hard work and forgiveness

hola familia!!!

Question of the week:
How can one get rid of fleas in a sleeping bag if they are inside where the feathers are?

This week was a bit painful... I got really sick with a head cold and an achey body, and then my comp got sick with a sinus infection and a really bad headache. But there is magic in working while you are sick. We left every day this week because we actually felt sicker in the house. It’s one of Padre Celestial`s blessings we think.

In the house we feel horrible. Everything ached. My nose was red and was like Niagara Falls. We decided that we were going to leave for a little bit and then if we felt worse we would come back. Once we started going we felt a little bit better. Then a miracle happened. We were able to go into a house and teach about the Plan of Salvation. The more we talked and testified, the less sick we felt! We ended the lesson and went outside and offered a prayer of thankfulness because we felt a lot better.

We were able to work for the whole week. haha But every night was also painful. We would get back to the house and all the achiness and head ache, nose running would come back. I love witnessing and feeling miracles. What miracles have you seen this week?

This week we also had conference with President. It was really awesome. We (as hna leaders) also had to teach and talk in the conference. We talked about the importance of remembering why we are here and how we can have fun and enjoy the mission during hard times.

Then Presidente talked a lot about one of the covenants that we make in the temple of no talking bad about the Lord’s annointed. He said that this problem is keeping us from being a consecrated mission. We have no right to talk bad about others because we too are imperfect. Many times we tend to judge others without knowing why they do something or without seeing it from their point of view. I try to always remember that in their mind, it makes sense.

Also, we don’t see the repentance process of other people. Just remember, the words that we use to judge others will be the same words used to judge us! Right after the conference we had interviews. I love my mission presidente. He is a man inspired and called of God.

A few days after the conference, the same hurtful thing that happened in Punta Arenas happened again... with the same hermana.

This week I have been putting into practice the Godly virtues of forgiveness and mercy. I have a deeper understanding now of the justice/mercy side of the Atonement and I am so grateful that Padre Celestial is letting me go through this again to more fully understand the Atonement and New Law that Christ established when He visited the Americas:
"And now it came to pass that when Jesus had spoken these words he turned again to the multitude, and did open his mouth unto them again, saying: Verily, verily, I say unto you, Judge not that ye be not judged.
For with what judgment ye judge, ye shall be judged; and with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you again." (3 Nephi 14: 1-2) 

Let us all speak a little more kinder, uplift the trodden down and tose that are hard to love. We cannot see the repentance process of others so it is best to give them the benefit of the doubt. 

It is perfect because I am studying right now in 3 Nephi and that is all Christ talks about. You should read these chapters. They are so enlighening and I have come to know Christ and recognize His voice more from reading His words.

I love this gospel and I love my mission. It is the best choice have ever made! and LES AMO TANTISIMO!


DISFRUTEN ESTA SEMANA!

I love Puerto Montt!!! it reminds me a lot of Laguna Beach

#dream team

soaking up the sun


we went to a history museo of puerto montt

they call me mozarto

the Pope Juan Paublo the Second sat here 50 years ago 

shout out to grandma hess!

free the mapuche!

JOEY! I caught an elefante!