Monday, July 6, 2015

5 of 5 Chile wins the American Cup, out with a bang

On monday we watched the Chile vs Peru game and we won, of course. 

On tuesday we worked in little town about 10 miles out side of Arauco called Laraquete. I cant remember if I mentioned it yet but it has a ton of people and missionaries have never been there. It is a ton of fun working there because no one has seen us before. In cities where there have always been missionaries everyone already has a "no" locked and loaded when they see us. so, no matter what we say,  or how they feel, most of them just say the first thing that comes to mind which is no. But in Laraquete almost everyone says yes. They realize that gambling a 20 minute sacrifice is worth the possibility of salvation. After introducing who we were and what we do, one woman was even surprised by the fact that we were willing to go by her house and take the time to help her personally. 

Long story short, we are having a lot of success in Laraquete. Plus it's right on the beach and covered in rivers, so it's beautiful.

On saturday Chile and Argentina fought in the American Cup final. I say fought because the game was intense. What was supposed to have been an hour and a half turned into 3 hours of bonus time, injuries, and penalty kicks. In the last penalty kick that would decided the game every one in the room was on their feel. I'm pretty sure the whole country was. Sanchez kicked the ball, we all held our breath and Chile exploded. The first time in over 100 years of trying, Chile won the American cup! We all got into the car and drove around what was a tranquil little town but now the biggest Celebration I have ever seen. Everyone who had a car, filled it and joined the honking, yelling traffic jam. Everyone else ran around the streets screaming, hugging strangers and playing music. This continued until way too late.

That night I was laying in bed trying to go to sleep when I realized that my second to last week had come to an end. My heart dropped. I had totally forgotten that my mission was coming to a close. I would try to describe how I feel but it would just sound cheesy so I'll just say it feels weird. My feet hurt, my cloths are worn out, I still wake up more tired than when I went to bed, but it's still not enough. This is it. I have to use everything I have. This is my peak. I am the product of 2 years of intense molding and shaping and I still have the power and austerity to do the work. Chances are, I will never be able to do this again. There is not one person that I will pass by without inviting them to listen, not one person I teach that I won't invite to baptism, and not one less active who isn't committed to going to church. Sorry, I'm rambling. After two years of this, I've gotten really good at giving myself motivational speeches.

So, this is the last email. And to add to the cheese, I'm going to share my testimony because that's usually what you do at the end of things. If there were just a couple things I learned during these to years it is #1 that god exists. Not just as a power or influence but a personage. He is all powerful and perfect and we are his children and any child, if he chooses to, can become like their father. #2 that the book of mormon is the word of god. Not only is it his word, but for reasons that I don't completely understand, it also has his power. Anyone who reads it with intentions to know truth or to be better will feel it. Like really really feel it. And finally #3 that my greatest duty and my greatest joy will be that of finding, making, and raising an eternal family. Anything in this world that stands before me and that goal is not of god, rather of the devil, and is there to make me miserable. I know that this is the one and only true church on the face of this earth. I've had my doubts, more than anything on the mission, but I have been sufficiently patent and have postponed dramatic responses to my insecurity until I was absolutely sure either way.
I am absolutely sure that this is the truth.

With that I end this email and in a few days more, end my mission.

See you in a few days,

Elder Thompson

Monday, June 29, 2015

4 of 5

Thanks for all the birthday wishes!

This week was good but it was unfair how fast it went by. We had a bunch of really good appointments set up but a lot of them fell so we ended up accidentally finding and teaching a bunch of less actives. It seems like every one of our coolest news turns out to be a member. And they almost all left the church because of another member that looked at them wrong or that didn't say hi to them or had some embarrassing situation. So we explain to them why we have a church, talk a little about the atonement, and by then they realize they are failing their second estate and that taking the sacrament is totally worth all the embarrassment or whatever they might otherwise avoid. It's almost the same thing every time. But we are getting good at just getting the point.

On thursday the Area President, Elder Gonzalez came to Los Angeles and had a conference with our mission. It was super good. Elder Gonzalez is really "choro" as they would say here. I think that would translate to direct, to the point, without sugar or anything. It was very inspiring.

On sunday I wasn't going to tell anyone it was my birthday because I had forgotten until that morning when I was filling in the date on something so I didn't want to be "that guy" and tell everyone it was my birthday to make them feel bad. But some how my branch president found out and announced it in sacrament meeting. So afterwards I got a lot of hugs including an older woman came up and gave me a kiss on the cheek that made everyone in the room uncomfortable being that I'm a missionary. The rest of the day we just contacted in the freezing wind because all of our appointments stood us up. At night I listened to music and ate way too much candy. It was a good birthday

Today Chile plays Peru in the semi finals. I even bought an official (replica) of the Chilean Jersey.

Till next week!

Monday, June 22, 2015

3 of 5

This week went by way too fast. On monday we just relaxed because there is nothing else to do here in Arauco on pday. On tuesday we did splits as a zone and I worked in a dirty suburb of ConcepciĆ³n. It was pretty fun. On wednesday we had an awesome lesson with a family that has been taught for a long time and they have decided to be baptised on the 11th, my last saturday in the mission. They have a lot to do/change before they can get baptized but we are pretty sure they can do it. 

On Friday we watched the Chile vs. Bolivia game and Chile Classified for the semi finals! A couple weeks ago the copa americana started and we got permission to watch all the games that Chile plays. I never knew but it turns out I really like soccer.

On Saturday most of our appointments fell so we decided to walk down the big highway and contact the houses down there. We contacted for about 2 hours until some one finally let us in. It was an old lady who has tryed a little bit of every church and it's really sure about anything. We quickly taught her the restoration and at the end we felt impressed to ask her to pray and ask god's opinion about what we had just shared right then and there. So she said a quick, sort of uncomfortable prayer and when she finished she looked at us as if she were going to say "well, I did it and nothing happened" but before she could say anything we saw her fill up with light and tears came to here eyes. We waited quietly until she finally said "wow, does this happen to everyone?" So we kind of explained what happened and the whole time she kept telling us that she feels really warm and really "tranquila." Normally answers from god come over time and come as a whispering but comforting influence and not as a powerful shout. But God is God and he does what he wants and it will be interesting to see why this women needed such a powerful response.

On sunday we were invited to visit a family of investigators but they lived way out in the Forest. They told us to take a bus to Carampange and they would pick us up there. So we got to Carampange and she didn't answer her phone so we asked someone if they knew her and they did. Then for the next half an hour we walked about two miles through the Forest asking people every once in a while for directions and Everyone knew who she was. We eventually got to her house and she wasn't there so we taught her neighbor and found a couple more people in the middle of nowhere.

That's about it. I got my package and it is awesome! just enough food to get me through these last three weeks.

Love yall!

Monday, June 15, 2015

2 of 5

This week we spent most of the time contacting the rich part of Arauco. I'm personally a fan of rich people in Chile because unless they really really want to listen to our message they say no. It saves us a lot of time. So after a total of like 5 hours of knocking doors, we found an awesome family who are really looking for something. And we don't have to pass by anyone else who doesn't want us to pass by as they keep pretending to be busy.

It's funny how in the beginning of my mission I thought "once I learn spanish, the work will be easier" or "once I can really teach someone it will be more fun." But even after 23 months of doing nothing else but this, it's still hard, and  there are always higher goals to put. And every day I am surprised by how exhausted I am when we finally get home. I wouldn't want it any other way.

On sunday an older man fed us lunch and afterwards he took out two guitars and next thing I know we are jamming together and he is ripping out a sick jazz solo. Never under estimate old people.

On saturday all our plans fell through so we went to teach a recent convert the restoration again and by the time we got past the first point, five of his cousins or friends showed up and they liked it so much that they all came to church on sunday with him.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Arauco 1 of 5

This is one of the five email I have left. I keep finding different ways to count down.

Arauco is awesome. We haven't gone a day without pouring rain but it is still beautiful. It's right on the beach and you can hear the ocean in some parts. All the street signs are made of wood and there are a lot of dirt roads and forresty areas. I met the ward on saturday and there are some awesome student age return missionaries in the branch which makes a big difference. The branch president is a young guy as well who served in new york so he speaks really black english. 

My comp is Elder Oliveira from Brazil. He is super cool. This week we had a baptism right away. His name is Leandro and he was part of a recently activated familily. Next step is to get them all to the a year. Also, Sergio from my last sector got baptized! 

As cheesy as it sounds, the closer I get to the end, the more it doesn't seem like it will actually come. There is a lot of work to do here in Arauco and even though I am a distracted person, I haven't had very much time to think about how the time is running out. We are getting all the members excited about working me to death this last transfer and my comp and I are going everything we can. We even started standing up in the buses, presenting ourselves and passing out passalong cards every time we have to travel. Which is like at least twice a day. This week went by way too fast but I blame it on the fact that we lost 3 days to conferences, transfers etc.

Today for pday we went to an embarrassingly cheesy Jesus themed Churrasco restaurant where all the tables had bibles and as you came in, the greeter gave you a piece of paper with a scripture and said "god bless you." We also went to an antique Mapuche store. I bought an indio picaro and a stone replica of the heads on easter island.

Till next week!

Monday, June 1, 2015


So it looks like i'm leaving los Angeles this cambio. I'm headed to Arauco to be with a black Brazilian. I left behind most of my stuff and i'm only taking what I will need for the next month and 15 days. Today we are going to have a pizza party with our bishops familiy and say good bye to some ward members and usual cambio stuff.

This past week we had some awesome lessons and found some good people. When we were knocking doors this 40 guy forced us into his house and right as we got in it just reeked of weed. He sat us down and explained to us how a month ago he got out of prison after 10 years because of drug trafficking and shooting a couple people. Yep, That's only 10 years in Chile. So he started showing all his scars from prison. That included taking his pants all the way off. We listened to him talk angrily about the world and the system and whatever then left as quickly possible. 

That's basically all that's happened this week. To make up for a short email i'm going to send some pictures.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Winter like a light switch

Looks like this week some one flipped the switch into winter because it just got super cold. And it looks like it's here to stay this time. 

Like usual this week was pretty tough but rewarding. There were a couple days where we just contacted all day without getting into a single house which is pretty frustrating. But at the same time we are teaching some of the most impressive people I have ever met in my mission.

It looks like I am probably leaving this cambio so this whole week will be focused on getting my child ready to lead the sector by himself which I know he will do well.

On a trunky note, I've decided that I want to work as a lot tec at a car dealership. So keep your eyes pealed for car dealerships that are close to the house.

That's about it for the week. Sorry that my letters are getting pretty short, I will be sending some pictures hopefully next week.

Monday, May 18, 2015

Antuco round two

Today for pday we went to the volcano Antuco. This time we didn't have the convenience to go in our own car so going in a bus took up our whole pday. Long story short, I have tons of pictures but not any time to send them today.

This week was sort of tough because all of our really good investigators decided to wait a while before making a decision. So we are back to finding news again. This week should be good though because we have a lot of cool new people to visit.

That basically it for the week. It's possible that I get transfered out of this sector in two weeks which would be exciting because after a while things in the same area get pretty mundane. But, what ever happens happens, the work is the same.

Alright, times up. Talk to you next week!

Monday, May 11, 2015


Well, yesterday we did skype so there's nothing new to talk about. But it was awesome to see you all. Really, every time we do skype I realize more and more how much I love you all and how grateful I am for your support and love. I am more than excited to be home for a couple months and do a bunch of fun stuff together. But we also have our work cut out for us for these next couple months so there wont be much time to dwell on it. 

Talk to yall next week!

Monday, May 4, 2015

Rainy day baptism

On Saturday Olga got baptized. We found her about three months ago and we had an awesome couple of lessons with her but after that we kind of lost contact. She was always sick, she had a ton of family problems, and she was trying to start a business. We didn't know but she had kept reading the book of mormon. She said that it gave her such a peace that she couldn't even go a day without reading it.

Not very many people showed up to the baptism because it was raining but it was still a cool experience.

On friday another ward asked me to play the guitar for their talent show. So another elder and I played some jack Johnson and some death cab. It didn't sound very good at all but it saved their talent show because the only other person with a talent was someone who cited poetry.

This sunday is mothers day. Which means it's my final skype sesh. We are probably going to do it at like 7:00 pm my time.

Well, i'll see you all in a couple days