Santiago Chile

Santiago Chile

Monday, July 28, 2014


hola Familia y amigos,

please be patient with me because I am typing at a really old computer that is diferent than the usual one and the keyboar is really sticky. also, there were some change made in the mission schedule. we now only have an hour to write families and the presidet and other things, so the emails might be shorter.

Also.....BIG SHOUT OUT TO MELANIE. she enters the MTC this week in Mexico, and then she is off to Chile! I am so proud of my twin sister!!!!

The mission is so exciting. this week we had two baptisms. Luis y Carolina. I wish you all could have seen the change in Luis before and after his baptism. He was so nervous and anxious beforehand, but after the baptism when he came up out of the water, with his wet, white shirt revealing the tatoos he had on his chest, he was all smiles. A lot of people say God is a God of miracles, and that is true, but the miracles now are people. People do change when they let Christ into their lives.

in addition to the changes in the schedule, we now wake up at 630 instead of 730. also, we can now eat once (dinner) with the members. usually in the morning we eat eggs and cereal on our own. later the members here always provide us with lunch. we eat with them in their houses. usually we don´t eat dinner, but now it is in our schedule to do so.

The other day we were eating lunch with a member of our ward, and I guess that recently their son had watched a movie from the states or had tlked with a friend who had seen a movie because when we were there he walked into the kitchen and droppe the F bomb 3 times. he was only 7, and he didn´t know what it meant, but it was so out of the blue that my companion and I had to laugh.

on Wednesday, we had interviews with the president. the thing you need to understand about president Videla is that he is so laid back. the interview was solely to get to know the elders. the next day we were at a nother meeting with him, and he gave his car keys to Elder Boelter to move his car in case the peron behind him needed to move.

on Thursday we had a lesson with Lorena. Lorena is so awesome. here in Chile, when you are greeted by a woman older than 40 she will call you 4 baby names in a row (like hola mi amor hijos chicios lindos) and then they will offer you jugito. we were in a lesson with her and it was going really well. she then asked us about the bishop from our church. we explained that he was not paid for his service. she then asked, ¨well it says in the bible that we need to pay tithes and offerings, so where do your tithes and offerings go¨? we explained that we do pay tithes and offerings that go to things like builing chapels and temples, and she said oh ok im glad you guys pay tithing. my companion and I were thinking WHAT? when has there ever been an investigator that looks for a church with tithing. Lorena went to church this week, and really enjoyed it.

that´s all I hae time for folks. thank you for your prayers!


Elder Williams

Monday, July 21, 2014

One month in el campo

Hola Familia y amigos!

man this week was crazy fun because we were spending it with some really cool people. One person that I want to talk about is Luis. Luis has been in contact with the missionaries for 15 years. during those 15 years he has really turned his life around. now, he is preparing to be baptized! he is so solid! when we visited the temple with him he told us that he felt the spirit really strong, and that he knows that church is true. He is already participating in the iglesia. In sunday school he actively contributes to the conversations, and has easily made friends with people from the ward. The reason why Luis is really cool to me is because he has so much faith. he is still working to gain a testimony of the book of mormon, but he already knows the church is true.

We tried to have a family home evening at his house last week, but only one person was able to make it. that is something that you will see a lot as a missionary: your plans will fall through. thankfuly the person that came, Romina, was a ton of fun, and really befriended the wife of Luis (se llama Carolina).

That same day we were coming out of a members home, and I saw a lady waiting in the gateway of her neighbor's yard. she had shouted "Halo" which is what you do to enter someone's house when they have a gait. the neighbor didn't respond, and so I went to talk to her about how I knew what she was feeling (rejection at the gate). She laughed, and when I came to shake her hand to introduce myself, she went in to kiss me. don't freak out because this is a common way that you meet someone of the opposite sex here, but as a missionary, we don't do it. unfortunately she kept going in and while trying to strain my head away, she kissed me on the cheek! It was funny for me and she was confused until I told her about the rule. she was really nice. her name is Patricia, and we set up an apointment with with her. 

on Wednesday I got to do an intercambio! intercambios are when missionaries switch companions and sectors. my companion didn't really explain it to well, but about 5 minutes before we left the apartment, he said "oy by the way your going to spend the night there too". that's another thing you learn as a missionary: you role with the punches and go with the flow. I was with Elder Parker. Elder Parker is from Boise Idaho, but he loves the city of Seattle, and really wants to live there. naturally, we had a lot to talk about. we got to meet with some cool members, and teach a little. it was a lot of fun, because it felt like a fresh start. I really felt like a missionary then. I was initiating conversations with people, I was setting up appointments, and I was sharing the gospel. 

your first 12 weeks in the field, you are assigned a trainer. the first twelve weeks is like trying to drink from a firehydrant, but I felt like the intercambio was like a quiz to see how I was learning, and Im pleased to say it didn't go too bad.

The next day I returned to my sector and learned a valuable lesson. when you are with someone, you need to be focused on that person and nothing else. Im not going to lie, sometimes it is difficult to stay focused in a lesson, especially if you don't speak the language amazing. sometimes your mind drifts to other things, like what you were supposed to do 15 minutes ago acording to your schedule, or how late you are for something, or if you are behind on your contacts for the day. if you don't course correct your thoughts, you don't listen to the investigators, and you cant help them. I know Fernando y Romina, who are recent converts said to me during a lesson "Elder Williams, por que esta preocupado"? I had not been in control of my mind, but instead I was thinking of another thing that I had to do that day. it is so important to dedicate your time to the people, by completly focusing on them when you are in their presence

on Friday night we had a family home evening from the barrio. Luis brought his guitar to the activity, and I got to play the guitar and sing teach me to walk in the light with my campionon. at first I was thinking, "am I allowed to touch a guitar"? thankfuly my campion assured me that it was ok. IT WAS SO AWESOME to touch a stringed intstrument again. the noche de hogar went great, and the hermanas in our barrio made brownies so that was a win.

the next day I had a really cool opportunity. there is a recent convert in our ward se llama Marta. she is an abuelita that truthfully reminds me of Grandma Jean (shout out to grandma Jean I love you). she has a son who is a percussionist in the most famous caumbia band in Chile. the Palasio family is huge here in chile with Cumbia music. Nelson, the member of the band, has two kids. Evans and Eveline. they are fraternal twins! they were so cute, but also a little sick, and so we gave them a priesthood blessing.

Sunday was crazy, because I gave a talk in sacrament meeting. I had spent 4 days preparing it, and I had it completly written down. Ive got some good news and some bad news. the good news is that the talk went really well, and everyone understood me and enjoyed the talk. the bad news is that everyone thinks I can speak spanish now. I can read spanish, I can speak it Ok, but understanding it when an abuelo without any teeth is talking to you is near imposible for me. 

That night we were just wrapping up the day, and we decided to stop by the house of a contact. her name is Rosy, and we were expecting here to cancel because it was kind of late, but when we stopped by, we saw that there were 4 other people in the house, who all sat down when we came in to share with us. THIS NEVER HAPPENS. there were 5 peruanos there that took time out of their schedules to listen to us. we taught about the restoration, and realized that we didn't have enough books of mormon for them to read. It truly is amazing to see how the Lord prepares people to hear his message. It is a miracle for me when someone says "pasen" and lets us into their home.

It is such a huge blessing in my life that I have the chance to compartir the gospel with the people of Chile. I know that through the gospel of Jesus Christ we can return to live with our father in heaven with our families for all of eternity!


Elder Williams

this week for our p day we drove an hour to the mountains to play in the snow! we had to take a really crowded car there, and it was cold cold cold, but a lot of fun tambien

Monday, July 14, 2014

I love to see the temple. . .

hola familia y amigos!

This week was awesome. On Wednesday we had our district meeting which was great because the zone leaders prepared a skit for us. they were acting like they were sherlock holmes, which was really funny because somehow they found a magnifying glass, and elder Perez from argentina had no idea who sherlock holmes was.

tambien, I received an awesome greeny package from my Mommy! it was awesome and greatly needed because I was really craving some trader Joes granola bars

This week, while we were passing by the house of one of our investigators we heard that the neighbor who is a member of our ward, recently had her mother pass away. we stopped by and talked with the family. in Chile the funerals are the day after or the night of the person's passing. the viewing is held in the house of the family. we stopped by the next day and gave a devotional and also sang nearer my god to thee.

on a brighter note, we had a great family home evening with some investigators. we like to use the mormon messages a lot here for family home evening. after we shared a video and taught about the book of mormon, the mom of the house kept insisting that we eat food. we had so much cake it was rediculous. in chile there is a meal called once where around 7 or 8 at night people get together and eat deserts, bread, and soda, and talk for about 1 to 2 hours. 

on Saturday we were able to go the temple with Luis y Carolina. it was so great and so wierd because it had been 4 weeks since I had been living in the CCM which is next door to the temple. it was wierd to return to the CCM but awesome to see the temple. there are two sister missionaries that do a tour there. we talk about the restoration of the church and of the gospel on the earth, and then we got to enter the temple. you can feel a change in the atmosphere when you enter the temple. the spirit is very strong, and the peace you feel there is the best!

that night I was writing in my journal. I felt the ground shake a little bit because I thought the apartment above was running on their treadmil, and I thought nothing of it. Elder Boelter was on the phone with members of our district and they said they felt it too. apparently there was an earth quake! it was a little one, so don't worry. everybody here is fine.

Sunday was great. Im getting way better at holding a conversation in Spanish. I can now make it 5 minutes. tambien we had an awesome lunch. hermana casejo came out with an iron plate the size of a trashcan lid full of pork, chicken, clams, oysters, beef, and sausage. that was great and not typical of here in Chile!

Thank you so much for all of your packages, letters, emails, and prayers. 


Elder Williams

Friday, July 11, 2014

Happy Independence Day?

hola famila y amigos

first off shout out to a couple of birthdays. primero, America. Segundo, mi padre! Happy Birthday Ken Williams! this week was a lot of fun. today I celebrate two months in the mission field. It boggles my mind to think I've been here 60 days!

on Tuesday last week, we had the awesome opportunity to meet our new mission president at a zone conference. President Videla es de Chile, and he grew up near the area I am currently serving. he is a convert to the church. He is very funny and his wife, Hermana Videla is as sweet as could be. 

The next day was a lot of fun too. We were visiting a member's house and there is this dog that lives in the street named Choro. He loves to play with missionaries, but I made the mistake of petting him, and he followed me around the street biting my coat, getting it all dirty, and smelling like dog. It was a pretty funny sight to see me try to run away from him (which only provoked him to bother me more). That same day we were walking in the street and said hola to a man walking in the street. he replied "Hey What's up" in a boston accent. we talked with him. he had lived all over the U.S. during his life, and it was crazy because he was also participating with Ramadaam. An Islamic American in Chile, that was crazy! what was even crazier was inviting him to hear more about our message in english.

On Friday it was the fourth of July...and nothing happened here. its actually kind of cold here, so sometimes I forget that its summer in the U.S. I read the scriptures in English for a minute to celebrate. That night we had a Noche de Hogar (Family home evening) with tons of people from church and a ton of people who are investigating the church. I made cookies (from a mix) and the people at the Noche de hogar thought they were the coolest things ever! ( I didnt tell them they were from a mix until later). the Noche de Hogar was at the house of Luis y Carolina. they have been meeting with missionaries for 15 years. They are recently married and they are scheduled to be baptized later this month! 

That same day we stopped by the house of a person we had contacted in the street. when he opened the door he said "Ive been waiting for you"! we had set up an appointment with him for the day before, but something had come up and we weren't able to meet with him. He had been waiting to meet with us with his mother so we could teach him. I felt terrible. he still let us in and was really nice about it. I hope we don't take our appointments lightly like that again. about 8 out of 10 appointments our investigators forget we are going to stop by, and we assumed that would be the case for him. We were wrong. you learn that as a missionary a lot. Missionaries are not perfect, and need to repent too.

On Saturday we got lunch in the Ferria! the Ferria is kind of like a traveling farmers market. it is so beautiful with people selling everything in the street from frank sinatra CDs to futbol jerseys to lettuce. it was a sunny day and really beautiful.

I really am beginning to love this country.  the people are amazing and the gospel is true!


Elder Williams

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Chile perdio!

hola familia y amigos!

This has been a sad week for Chile. Chile lost to Brazil and is done with mundial. We could see it in the eyes of the chilenos that they were crushed on Saturday. there were a lot of limp chilean flags, and smudged face paint that day.

other than that it was an awesome week! this week we got a new mission president in the mission! his name is elder Videla. he is the first Chilean mission president in our missions history. I have not yet met him but Ive heard great things about him. 

lots of you have asked about how the language is coming a long. it is coming a long slowly. the people here love to ask me the same question and every time I give the same answer: Mejor que ayer (Better than yesterday). thats just kind of a theme from the mission in general. just do better than you did yesterday.

Yesterday was a good day. We had ward conference yesterday where the stake president spoke. he talked a lot about love. this Gospel this Church is built upon love. God so loved the world that he gave his only begotten Son. Im getting to know the members better. 

We had a Noche de Hogar as a ward. that had me get up in front of everyone and sing a nursery rhyme in espaƱol. it was difficult because una hermana was teaching me while I was singing it with her. it was crazy,but the ward liked it.

I got to sing on Sunday with a choir from the ward. we sang dont forget to pray. prayer is way important on the mission. many times the only thing you can do for the people is pray for them. There was an hermana, the wife of a recent convert who had been really sick the whole week. She was asking questions to my companion about her doubts and her concerns. I couldnt understand her, and it was frustrating because I couldnt identify her needs to help her. for the rest of that lesson I was praying for her. We always need to have a prayer in our hearts. 

right now I dont have a camera cord to transfer photos to the computer, but I think I´ll be buying one today,and Ill start sending photos.

I love being a missionary. the work that we are laboring in is bringing souls to Christ. Our work is people and sharing with them the ability to return to live with their Father in Heaven forever with their families. I am so thankful for my savior Jesucristo. I may not speak the language well, I may get lost in the streets of Quinta Normal everyday, but I know that my Savior lives!


Elder Williams