Santiago Chile

Santiago Chile

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

February 16, 2016 - Happy Valentine's Day

Hola familia y amigos,

We had a great week this week. We were very obedient and had a very lame Valentines Day! 

On Wednesday we taught Tania (not Talia, I wrote it wrong last week). It was a nice lesson. We followed up with her reading of the Book of Mormon and she told us "at the beginning, it was different, but as I kept reading I felt this peace come over me and something warm in my heart that I had never felt before". We were so pumped! We invited her to church. The only problem is that her dad is really Catholic, and because she still lives with him, she has to ask permission to go to church.

That same afternoon, we taught Stefen. He is a Haitian investigator we have. He was locked out of his house when we found him. We taught him and then we prayed that the Lord would help us open the door so he could get into his house. We tried to get in with a cut-up two liter bottle, and it didn't work. We were just about to give up, I said one more prayer in my heart, and then the door opened when we tried one more time! It was an awesome little miracle.

We taught Pilar and her son Leo. Leo found some anti-Mormon material, so he´s been a bit doubtful about our message. We asked him if he had read the Book of Mormon. He said no. We asked him if he would read. He said no. We told him that what he was looking for on the internet were reasons why the church couldn't be true, instead of searching in the Book of Mormon where he can know that the church is true. He didn't commit to reading the Book of Mormon. He was content with following the twisted opinions and lies found on the internet instead of reading an established and concrete evidence for himself. I invite anyone who has doubts about the church to read the Book of Mormon and then ask themselves "could a young farm boy have written this to trick 15 million people into believing that he was a prophet"? I don't think so!

On Thursday, we taught Christian in the house of his neighbor. 3 of his neighbors are active members of the Church, so we are taking advantage of that.H e is doing really well. He is still a little anxious about baptism and picking a date, but he is progressing really well.

We also had an appointment with Tania again, but she didn't show up...

On Friday, I went on an interchange with Elder Da Rosa. It was a fun time. I went to his ward, and I was able to give a little insight about some of his investigators. We contacted a lot, but didn't teach too much. Meanwhile, Elder Barillas was in our sector with Elder Huber, and they taught a ton of people! I was so proud of him, because he did a great job.

On Saturday, a lot of appointments fell through, but we were able to visit Miguel Angel. He´s doing well. he committed to going to church

On Sunday, only Christian made it to church. The Alberto family had people that were visiting them so they weren't able to make it this Sunday. We taught the Alberto family in the afternoon. They are doing well. The father received an answer about the Book of Mormon. He said he felt like his spirit was taking a bath while he read it, and now he drives his taxi with the Book of Mormon on the dashboard.

We taught Christian again Sunday night. We taught him in Pilar´s house. We followed up with his reading and he said that he felt like something warm entered into his heart, and he felt like the Book of Mormon was true. We are working on choosing a baptismal date with him.

Yesterday a ton of appointments fell through, but we did get to visit some less active members. A cool story was that we felt that we needed to visit Marjori and Fito last night, because they had'nt gone to church in a while, and they recently just moved into a new house ( that after 2 months we found for them actually) when we arrived we found the bishop and his first counselor there. They were saying "what a shame that you are here alone. That means that we cant come in-- oh, hey Elderes, now we can come in"! We taught Marjori with the bishop and his counselor. It was a nice lesson, and nice to know that we were in the right place at the right time!

That's it for this week. I testify about the power of the Book of Mormon. It really does work. I have had similar experiences to those of our investigators, so I can also say that I feel and know that the Book of Mormon is the word of God.


Elder Williams

Sunday, February 14, 2016

February 9, 2016 - Hermana Acevedo

Hola familia y amigos,

This week was a good week, but it was very frustrating and a huge exercise in patience and hope. We had 17 appointments with investigators this week and 14 of them fell through... We walked a lot and contacted a lot and we are working with the members more.

On Tuesday we got to visit Miguel Angel. He is doing really well. He is with goals to receive the Aaronic Priesthood because he never received it after his baptism. He was surprised that he could still receive it. We were able to testify of him of the power of the Atonement. It is true that Christ can forgive us of our sins. That is the miracle of forgiveness. We can always repent, and the most perfect beings in existence can forget that we ever did something wrong.

On Wednesday we were knocking doors and we found a new investigator named Talia. She was really interested in the message of the Restoration. She said that she was looking for a new church, and that she would read the Book of Mormon. She was visiting her friend´s house when we taught her. Her friend wasn't too interested, but Talia said that she wants us to visit again, so we will hopefully see her this Wednesday.

On Thursday, we taught Cristian. He is a friend of a young woman from the ward. He has come to church 3 times. He told us that he wants to make changes in his life. He also said that he was unemployed and he told God that if he found a job, he would investigate the church, and he got a job and now we are working towards baptism with him! 

On Friday, we taught a ton of people at night. We were pulled into the house of two Pentecostals and they talked for a while about the Bible, and then let us speak about prophets for about 30 seconds before interrupting us again. We also taught a man named Gonzalo. He was really nice and interested in the message, but he and about all of the people in our sector leave on vacation this week! I am not kidding. Chile shuts down during February.

On Saturday, we taught the Alberto family again. Pilar came with us. Pilar was born to be a missionary. She testified so well about everything. We have to get her a name tag that says sister Acevedo. She said "at first I wasn't sure about the Book of Mormon and about God answering us, but then I read it and I prayed and I know it is not a lie. This is true"!

That night we also visited some recent converts. We arrived while they were in the middle of a party and because of what happened there, We need to visit them a ton. Satan works hard with the converts.

On Sunday, there were only 45 people at church. Everyone was on vacation.T hey were so short on people, that Elder Barillas and I had to bless the Sacrament! It was a nice experience. We had 5 investigators at church. The Alberto family, Christian, and the friend of a member came to church! Yes! I love it when the gospel principles class is full.

We taught Christian again that night in the house of the gospel principles teacher. It was a nice lesson, and Sonia, the wife of Mauricio, the teacher, bore her testimony about how she knew the church was true, and how it was hard for her to take the decision to be baptized. The members were testifying well this week.

Yesterday, we had a family home evening with Christian and the Valenzueal Tapia family (EQP) It was a good time, and Christian is making friends with everyone in the ward. We also found a new young couple they are teaching. Bastian and Maria Jose. They lived in Canada for a year and they have a new baby girl. they were very nice and Bastian looks a lot like Phil.

Today we went to go and eat Chinese food with the zone leaders, and my telephone rang. It was Elder Birrell!!!!!!!! It was awesome to hear his voice, and he is doing well. his trainer is Elder Smith. He´s going to be in Zapadores. Elder Smith is from my district in the MTC!! We've got two Bothell boys in the North Mission!!!!

That's it for this week. I learned a lot about patience this week. Sometimes the Lord lets us remember who gives us success. I know that He is the Lord of the vineyard and that this is His work, and He lets me help. I love Him for letting me do that.


Elder Williams

February 1. 2016 - Baptism by Fire!!

Hola familia y amigos,

I'm sure that everyone at home is pumped to be seeing Melanie Williams again! On Thursday I got permission from President to go and see her at the temple. It was a very special experience even though we hardly could recognize each other. We have both changed a lot but we are still best friends. Love you Meli and I'm proud of you for being such a great missionary.

Okay, on Tuesday we got to eat lunch with Pilar and her son, Leo. Leo and Jorge are her two sons and they both went to her baptism. They left really interested in hearing the gospel, so we taught Leo after lunch and we are planning on visiting Jorge this week.

That night we visited Hector. He is a new investigator that we found last week. We were teaching him about prayer again, and his wife came in, and when we invited her to join us for a prayer she came in and yelled at Hector saying "what are you, drunk? Don't you know these guys are a cult and that some man started their church and we are Catholic? Why did you let them in?!!!! It looked like she was a little stressed. She still let us say the prayer and then politely threw us out of her house...gotta love Chile!

On Wednesday, we visited a lot of people that we had appointments with and none of them were there or they just hid inside. We did get to teach Hugo and Lorena again. Hugo just got back from the north, and he and his family committed to going to church this Sunday.

On Thursday, we got to teach Reinaldo. It's been about 2 months since we've been able to teach him.  He is one of the recent converts here. He said that he doesn't go to church because he still is mourning his wife and his children prefer to go on trips. I testify that the best thing you can do to help your family and combat depression is the renewal of the presence of the Holy Spirit that comes into our lives when we take the Sacrament.

On Friday, I had to go to the office to register my classes for BYU. Elder Adams was there so we could do it together. It had been 3 months since I had seen my taina (brother in Rapanui). He said everyone is doing fine on the Island and that Fran and Claudio are getting baptized this month.

On Saturday, we got to go on the temple tour with Pilar, her son Leo, and Leo´s girlfriend Jaquelín. Jaquelín is actually less active. Pilar and Jaquelín ended up crying at the end of the tour. Leo was impressed, but on Friday when we saw him he had been researching the church on the internet. He found a ton of anti-Mormon material, so we had to combat against that with him, but the temple helped so he could see what the Church is really all about.

That night we had a lesson with the Alberto family. They didn't accept a baptismal date but they are resolving and committing to reading the Book of Mormon and praying and going to church.

On Sunday, Enrique, the dad of the Alberto family came to church. Also Miguel Angel, a less active young man we have been teaching and his nonmember girlfriend, Daniela came to church. They liked it. Hugo and Lorena didn't make it. We still aren't sure what happened.

Also, Pilar was confirmed. She cried at the end of it and gave the Bishop a big hug

The third hour in church was given to us, the missionaries. It was the fifth Sunday, and we got to teach how to do missionary work and practice with all of the members of the ward. We have them with goals, and they have to report key indicators to us every week about their individual efforts to share the gospel. We are excited to see what happens with that.

That's it for this week. I'm glad that I still get to share the gospel as a missionary because that is a blessing that doesn't last forever (right Meli?) (: I know that this is Christ´s true church and that this gospel has changed my life!


Elder Williams