Letter received 8/23/2010
The good news is that Caldera is THE PROMISED LAND. We reached the celestial level without working Monday and almost all of Tuesday. The whole world wants to hear our message. Out of 20 contacts, we write down about 13 addresses, with appts to visit them, and almost everyone is in their house. We found 11 new investigators, we didn´t even have to look desperately on Sunday night. We have a baptism this Saturday, and a mom and son who accepted a date yesterday for the 10th of September. We had 4 investigators in Sacrament Meeting... I love my life. Seriously, I thought I was happy in Iquique, but I had no idea.
The truth is that I do really miss Iquique. I miss my friends there, and it´s WAY different than the tiny little town that is Caldera, but that´s the mission right? We have to change areas. And I´m super blessed to be here in Caldera right now.
We live behind the radio station, which is kind of weird. We live behind it as in we share a gate with them and there´s a little passage that leads to our house and we can hear everything they say and all the music they play. Our house is basically made of cardboard. Seriously, it´s like it wasn´t built to last. There are 4 Hermanas in Caldera, we all work in the same area, in the same branch, but obviously have different investigators and stuff. Our houses are technically different but we live right next door (both behind the radio station) and we are always coming and going. It´s a little bit harder to be obedient with the schedule with 4 Hermanas instead of 2, but we´re trying our best. My companion, Hermana Arriaga, is sweet. I suggest that you she do something, and she applies it right away. It´s only a LITTLE awkward being senior companion. Sometimes I don´t know if I need to be more strict, or less bossy, or both? But she was really happy that we arrived at the celestial level, because they had never done it before. And I know that we are going to have tons of success together, because this area is sweet! The other Hermans, Hermana Galdamez and Hermana Ramirez, are awesome too. H. Galdamez was companions with HQ early on in their missions, so we always talk about her, which makes me feel more at home.
I don´t know if you guys heard about the 33 miners in Copiapo who were trapped? I really have no idea how international this news was, but Copiapo is the city an hour away from where I live, and we´ve been hearing about them since the beginning. We thought for sure they were dead, because 16 or 17 days or however long they were down there is FOREVER, but it was super miraculous yesterday that they found them all alive! Well, I actually haven´t heard any more news since yesterday, so I´m not sure what´s been happening, but remember when I told you that when Chile won games in the World Cup the city was CRAZY? It was like that again yesterday. Every car that drove by was honking their horn, and just a general really happy feeling. Now there are more people than ever that believe in God here!
This week we´re traveling to ANTOFAGASTA. Elder Costa from the Presidency of the 70 and Elder Amado, the Area President of Chile, are giving a special conference for the missionaries, and everyone except Iquique and Arica are traveling to Antofagasta this Thursday. a) Bad luck that my best friends are in Iquique and Arica. b) We´re traveling Wednesday through the night. Again. c) This conference is going to be sweet! Today we (from now on, we will generally refer to the 4 Hermanas, because we almost function as one unit) were super stressed about what we are going to wear (because they have a million rules about how nice we have to look and hey, we´re sister missionaries, so we´re not really pretty) so we spent almost the whole morning in Copiapo looking for clothes. It´s an hour bus ride into Copiapo, and we´re still there, so we´re going to get back JUST in time to start working. I´m a little stressed out about the conference and our work this week because we´re going to miss Wednesday night, all day Thursday, and Friday morning, but I know that it will all work out. I feel pressure being "in charge," so keep me in your prayers. And I´m certainly praying for all of you. It seems like a whole lot of bad/huge/important/difficult things are happening in your lives. What we all need is a little more reliance on the Savior. I´ll be praying for that for all of you.
Thanks for your letters, your support, your love, your prayers. Until next week!