Saturday, November 29, 2014

Giving Thanks

I don´t really remember what happened before thursday. I guess that is what happens when I forget to write in my journal.
On thursday we went to President´s house at like 10ish to do some stuff for him there. Afterwards everyone else in the office showed up and we had a big thanksgiving feast. Complete with turkey, mashed potatoes and gravy, cranberry sauce, yams, stuffing, and endless bread (the Chilean touch). At the end, I don´t know how she did it but Hermana Bluth made a pumpkin pie with ingredients you can find here. Everything was amazing. It was such a blessing to be able have thanksgiving with President and his wife. 

Right afterwards we loaded up the van and headed down to Temuco to fix some beds. By the time we left it was already pretty late so we slept in Angol and continued in the morning on to Temuco. On the way down we would blast the three Nat King Cole christmas songs I have to celebrate the beginning of the christmas season. Luckily, the weather was pretty grey and rainy and it was colder down south so it felt like it was christmas time. 

The trip went really well and was really pretty but really exhausting. We got back later friday night and made root beer floats that we´ve been waiting all week to make. That´s basically everything. Thanks for all the pictures of snow and stuff. It never gets old.

Elder Thompson

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Traveling and Baptizing

A little bit of everything happened this week. 

The new office couple of senior missionaries came to the mission on tuesday. Unfortunately we didn´t realize we would need to make space for them untill monday afternoon. We quickly looked around the office for tools, tables, deviders and things, made a couple different plans, and finally remodled the office. It looks worse but it fits more so we settled.

On Tuesday we prepared for the trip down south to Temuco. 

On Wednesday we had the baptisimal inteview with Vanessa. We got to the Bishop´s house who was going to give us keys to the chapel but he wasn´t home nor did he answer his phone. So we went to the councelors house and the same thing happened, he wasn´t there and he didn´t answer his phone. That happened with 2 other families who have keys. In the end we didn´t have keys so we just walked to the closest park and they did the interview on the bench. It was a little weird but in the end, she passed the interview.

That night we stayed up late loading up the van with stuff for the trip. We again filled it until it literaly couldn´t fit anything else. 

On thursday we left early and headed down South through Angól, Los Sauces, Traiguén and ended up in Temuco. We got stuff done there and slept in house of Elder Anderson and Herron. It was going to be a little reunion party but we all have to do verification calls.

On Friday we had our baptism. The service started at 7:00 pm but we still had a bunch of stuff to do in Temuco. We got up early drove around, bought stuff, fixed beds, drove through Carahue and Chol Chol (really pretty, I recomend googling pictures of it) and finished doing repairs in Traiguén at 3:00. Normally it takes about 4 hours to get from Traiguén to Concepción so if there was traffic we would miss the baptisimal service of Vanessa. As worried as we were, all we could do is start driving. I don´t know how it happened but we got to Concepción at 5:45, just in time to take a shower, get in our suits and finish preparations for the service. 

The Baptism was the best I have seen here in Chile. Tons of people came, the talks were great, and everything was very spiritual. It even brought another investigator that came to tears. In a good way of course.

Today for pday we went to Parke Lota and looked around the musium for a while then went to some ruins of an old factory on the beach. The same ruins that, if you remember, I played paintball at about a year ago. Weird.

Saturday, November 15, 2014


In the city of Lebu, most of the men who live there work as fishermen. They get in teams, go down south, catch a bunch of fish, then come back up to Lebu to process it all. One of the more rare fishes they catch is swordfish. When they take out the meat they are left with a giant sword thing which they then add a handle to and sell them for pretty cheap. During my entire time in Lebu I looked for one of these swords and couldn´t find one. Yesterday we were dropping off a washing machine and stuff in Lebu and when we were grabbing some lunch I found the place that sells them. It is a small hut right on the beach. Long story short, now I have one of the coolest, most hard core swords ever! And they only cost 15,000 pesos (about $30). Bad news is that it doesn´t fit in my suitcase nor do I think it´s legal to import it but I´ll see If I can send it in a package.

That's probably not that interesting for you guys but it was quite the achievement for me.

On wednesday we had an appointment with Vanessa to make sure she was ready to be baptized on Saturday. When we were walking up the stairs to the chapel an older man called out to us then ran up to greet us. He then continued to question me about "that blue book" that I had in my hand. We wrote down his address but he insisted on us teaching him right there and then. We entered the chapel thinking about how we could two things at once. While walking down the hall we found 3 of the single adults studying together in one of the rooms. I asked for their help and immediately they had their scriptures at the ready to do splits and help us teach both of them. That is one of the benefits of having 6 return missionaries in their early 20s in your ward.

The lesson with Vanessa was awesome. I would say it was the most spiritual lesson I´ve had. There is nothing cooler than seeing the results of real testimony building. But the next day when we tried to call her to set up some details with the baptismal service she wouldn´t answer. This continued until last night when she said she needs to wait a week. It´s kind of a bummer but we are all sure she will go through with it eventually. 

Besides that this week has been just as busy as the others. I don´t know what changed but all of a sudden it´s getting really hard to balance all the work in the office and the proselyting. We are having a ton of success in San Pedro but the office is getting really unorganized because we are never there. yet everyone still tells us that we need to be out of the office more. I´m just glad that i´m learning this in the mission where nothing that bad can happen. Well, not THAT bad.

Today I´m going to finish my BYU Provo/Hawaii application. Cross your fingers!

Saturday, November 8, 2014

La Locura 3.0

I was kind of worried about having to make that skype call but I´m really glad we could end up doing it. Thanks for getting it all set up and working. It makes me excited for skyping again in a couple months.

The second I finished the call, La Locura started. My old comp Elder Herron went back as a normal missionary and my new comp Elder Manscill came. This group was fairly small; 10 leaving and 14 coming in, but it was a lot more crazy. That might be due to the fact that I had to learn a new job and teach someone my old job or because we didn't prepare or make plans before hand. Whatever it was, we got it done in the end.

Durring one of the trainings with the new missionaries, all the Latin American missionaries would laugh at my Chilean vocabulary so I tried to avoid those words and I couldn´t think of any other way to say things. I´m going to have to learn spanish again once I leave this country.

We have already made two trips with my new comp. The first to Lota and the Second to Lebu. I just realized that those were both my old wards. In Lebu we had to close down a house. The missionaries had left about a week earlier and had just destroyed the house before they left. Luckily we were able to save some stuff and filled the back of the van to the point that we could literally not fit anything else in. Not even a toaster.

A couple weeks back we taught Vanessa about the law of the fast. She has accepted everything that we say but when it came down to not eating for 24 hours she said it was impossible. We told her that the only way to find out if it was possible was to try it. This week, without even telling us, she decided to try it. Afterwards she mentioned that she has no doubt it´s something god wants us to do because of how good she felt and how clear her mind was. As for now, She gets baptised next week!

I got the package! and it was giant! My comp and I decided to save it for when we make big trips, which we have to do a lot of.

For pday today we are just going to relax. We need it.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Día de Todos los Santos

This week has won the award of one of the craziest. Actually now that I think about it, there has been crazier but it was still pretty hectic.

This weekend we have transfers and we haven´t done anything to prepare. We also had every day full of appointments and our truck was having problems so we sent it in to get fixed. I never realized how hard it would be trying to juggle being a missionary with investigators and a ward and at the same time have to run everything in office. Sometimes I can only halfway do each job but in the end I do what I can do and it´s worth it.

It seems like the more money you have in Chile, the more english you know. Whenever we knock doors in the rich parts we almost always find someone who speaks english. The other day I taught my first lesson in Spanglish. I would start a sentence in Enlglish then forget a word and just continue in Spanish and the investigator would do the same. 

For pday today we went to the Cemetery in Concepción, which is giant. Today is "the day of all the saints" at least that is the literal translation, i´m not sure what they call it in english. But basically everyone, and I mean everyone, goes to the cemetery with flowers, brooms, and alcohol to communicate with their loved ones on the other side. We put a table out with some pamphlets about the plan of salvation and we just went around talking to people. Being that it is a national holiday and it was pretty sunny, most people were pretty nice so it was a fun experience. Plus, south american Cemeteries are very extravagant. The bigger, flashier, more catholic, intricate the grave, the more you love the person who died. Or something like that.

It looks like this transfer i´m staying but I will be training my new companion to work in the office. This time I could basically pick my companion so it will be a fun time.

As far as Halloween, it was a normal day. It´s not very big here but we still had some cake the color of a pumpkin that the senior couple made. I also bought Guava juice in celebration.