Monday, July 19, 2010

Celestial Missionaries!

This letter was sent 7/19/2010

Okay, the spacebar on this computer does not really work, so beware. If you are way confused about a word, imagine a space in a convenientlocation andit was probably what I was going for.
This week was another crazy week. I thinkI said last weekthat HQ had to go to Antofagastato renew her visa. She left Tuesday afternoon,and came back Wednesday night, which meant we lost two full days of working, because Tuesday morning we have district meeting. I worked with the other Hermanas in the zone, and it was interesting to see how they work,to get new ideas,but mostly what I learned is that I´m happy with the work we do and I´mglad HQ trained me the way I am (the other Hermanas are a little... slow). Monday night we came home early because I didn´t have a voice, I was coughing like a crazy woman, and everyone thought the cold air was going to killme. By Saturday morning I hadn´t stopped coughing andit was getting stronger,so we wenttothe clinic and found out I have bronchitis. But luckily now I have antibiotics, an inhalator, and I´m gettingbetter. So don´t worry.
Thursday afternoon we had a missionary activity for the stake youth conference they had this week. A few missionaries, including me, talked about why we decided to come onthe mission, and then we taught the youth how to make contacts and went out and worked. Someof the groups had a lot of success, but the girl I was with didn´t have a testimony,which I found out in the first contact where we actually talkedto someone. So we spent allour time walking around talking about that instead of contactingpeople. But I thinkI helpedher out in the end, so it was worth it.
Friday morning we had interviews with our new President! Him and his wife were also at the missionary activity on Thurdsay but we only talkedto themfor a few minutes there. They are ADORABLE. Hermana Bruce doesn´t really speak Spanish at all, but she´s so cute and everyone just lovesher. President Bruce is awesome! He servedin Puerto Rico but like a millionyears agoand he says he´s having a hard time remembering Spanish but really,hespeaks well. Everyone can understandhim and everything, so it´s good. We had a little meeting about our new "vision" that we have, which is being Celestial Missionaries. I´ll explain that in a second, but after we talked about our new goals, we had interviews, and then everyone left. But the interviews were in our chapel, so we were waiting until everyone left so we could lock up. President and Sister Bruce and the assistants were gettinginto their car, and we were waitingwith the ZoneLeaders, and they pulled up next to us and Sister Bruce started asking about a few restaurants that shehad looked up on the internet, where they were. We were explaining one, named Wagon, which is basically next to our house, and President was like "hey, just get in" and we were like "umm, all of us?" and they said yes. So, HQ got in the front with Sister Bruce, and I squeezed in the back with the assistants and the zone leaders. Elder Skene, one of the assistants,was more orless sittingonmy lap,but don´t worry about it. We directedthem to Wagon,which is a really nice restaurant, and then we thought we were just going to eat in our house and thengo out to work, but President was like, "No, you´re all coming to eat with me!" So we ate the most delicious lunch in the world, I´mserious. It was soooo good. Nothing like any of the other ridiculous food I´ve eaten in Chile. Mmm. Plus,we got tospend more time with President and Sister Bruce, who are so soso awesome. They like to speak English, so it was kindof weird goingbackand forth between speaking English to Sister Bruce, a mixture to President and the assistants,and only Spanish to HQ and the Zone Leaders. But it was very very great and we were really really blessed.
Okay, so last week we got a letter from President Bruce about how we can develop Christ-like attributes and skills from PMG to be more Celestial,and we have levels that correspond to the number of contacts,new investigators, lessons with members, and total lessons that we do each week. To be a celestial missionary, we have to do 120 contacts, teach 20 lessons, and at least 8 of them with a member, and find 10 new investigators. There is also the City of Enoch level, which is 140 contacts, 30 lessons, 12 with a member, and 15 new investigators (By the way, McKay, Kevin, Brian, etc., I want to know how these numbers relate to your averages on your missions. I´ve been really curious about that!). This last week we were super happy to reach level 3 (right before Celestial) because we worked such few days, but this week we´re aiming for Celestial, and next week City of Enoch. It´s super cool to work with these goals, because they transfer into daily goals, and we just work with faith andprayer to accomplish them. Yesterday we needed to find 3 new investigators and have 3 lessons with members to accomplish level 3, and we just prayed and prayed for those specific numbers. At the beginning of church we didn´t have hope for lessons with members, because all our regulars couldn´t work with us, but we asked a girl named Yesica to come out with us for an hour and she said yes. We went to an appt we had, and it was sweet! The investigator, Liliana, was super interested and accepted all the commitments and everything. Yesica was so excited that she decided to keep working with us. We went to a reference that someone had given me that day, and the girl whose name we had didn´t live there, but a guy from Bolivia answered the door, consented to listen to us for "two minutes" (what we always say to get people to listen), and was SO interested, it blew us away. We said we would like to come back to visit the next week and he said "No, the pleasure would be mine. Really,this is exactly what I´mlooking for rightnow." It was great! So,one new investigator. Then we picked up Jorge, our last convert, to go to an appt. That girl wasn´t there, so we went to some reference we had, asked for 2 minutes, and went into his house. The guy said he´s been researching religions for his whole life, looking for the right one, but has never found it. He hadn´t heard anything about Joseph Smith or the Book of Mormon, but understood exactly what we were teaching. And Jorge was so awesome, before we could even extend any invitations he was like "Our invitiation to you is to investigate this church. Read the Book of Mormon! Pray to God! I received my testimony by..... and I knowthat you can feel this way..." etc. He would be an amazing missionary, seriously. So, another new investigator. We had an appt at 7:30 with the Donoso family to teach their son, and it was about 7:30, but we needed another new investigator and knew the Donosofamily could wait. So we asked Jorge what he thought we should do. "Well, let´s go visit some of my friends." We went to one house, and she wasn´t home, so we wenttoanother house, and his friend´s son answeredthe door. His mom was busy for a little while, but HQ invited him tolisten to our message too, so we entered, taught, andhe was our new investigator too! That makes 4 lessons with members,and 3 new investigators. We brought Jorge to the Donoso family´s houseto say hello,and they invitedhim in to eat "once" (what they call dinner here,but they only eat bread with avocado,and Ecco,which is like coffee but not actually coffee), which was great because he is really strugglingwith money and can only affordto eat lunch every day. We had a good lesson with their son, Coque, and tried to set a baptismal date, but he´s really rebellious, just to be contrary, and we don´t know why. So, we still don´t have any baptismal dates, but we´re praying for the gift of discernment to know what his problemreally is,because he knows he has to get baptized, and his parents really want it to be soon so they can get sealed as a family.
Anyway, that was my week! A lot to write about. I hope it didn´t bore you guys. But I´m really loving being here and really excited to work with these goals that we have. I´ll keep you posted, of course.
Thanks for your letters, I love you, I pray for you all always, and I´ll write again next week of course!

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