Saturday, July 27, 2013

July 22, 2013

I am looking at the itinerary that you threw together and it looks fine, but don't book any flights after landing in La Serena until you want to leave Chile cause you don't need to. Most of the buses you can get through the night time so the travel won't cut out a ton of time, although you guys might be really tired. Anything outside of my mission you can figure out, but once we get into it, I know how to get around really well so don't worry about that. I might want to cut out some places to spend time in others, so we can just play that by ear and talk more when I get home. The buses are safe here.

I totally forgot about seeing Pat Oviatt in the MTC and saying hello, until you mentioned that, but it's true - I did that.

Look at those two "boys" playing more golf than they probably should (Dad and Jacek).

An English as a second language course might not be a bad idea when I get home.

Oh....I am missing Taste of Edmonton!

Love you guys,

This is the 3 months left in my mission mark - I can't believe it. This is getting really close, really fast! It felt like just yesterday that is was 4 months left. It is also Elder Gillespie's mom's birthday today.

Last week we did the zone attack after our P Day. I went out with Elder Rattel whose only been inn the mission for 10 weeks. He's really new, but also speaks very well. We were knocking doors and came up to a place with a really cool door. It was a metal door, but painted to look all medival with a big wooden door handle and big metal trim. I thought - I'm going to knock on this door, so I did. A guy answered and I was talking to him and I told him I thought his door was pretty cool. Then I looked inside and there was this large picture on the wall that was really cool as well so I told him so. He asked if we wanted to come in so we said sure... why not? It was a tatoo parlor, disguised as a house. That was officially the first time either Elder Rattel or myself had ever been in a tatoo parlor... and it was on our mission. That was a new experience for us. Good stuff. So we talked to the guys in there for a while - really nice. Then the 1 guy said, "Ok, whose next to get a tatoo?" So we said well, you guys are going to start so we'll just head out, but nice to meet you. Very interesting!

Another day we were knocking doors and went by a house where the lady was peering outside through her frosted window. She was looking at us so we thought we'd knock on her door. She was actually baptized a long time ago when she was about 12 years old. We shared a short message, but she told us she's living with a man and that's why she hasn't been active.

On Thursday we did an inter-cambio. I went with Elder O'Brien whose from Toronto, Canada. It was all  normal until we got to this one house. I'm not sure if they were less active or investigators, but they had a coconut and the young girl, about 9 or 10, wanted to open it. I really wanted to open that coconut too, but I didn't know if her mom would mind, plus I've never opened one before... although I had seen it on the Food Network and I really wanted to try it. Anyway, we shared a short message and the mom came out and Elder O'Brien asked if she know how to open the coconut and she said no, she'd tried but couldn't do it. So, I asked if I could try and she said go for it. I asked for a knife - that had a broad blade and was long. I flipped it to the non-sharp side and gave the coconut a few whacks and it opened... just like on the Food Network... it was fantastical. I don't know if you've ever opened a coconut, but it was a super awesome experience for us. Then we got to eat some fresh coconut. It tasted a bit like carrots to me.

On other fruit related news... this was a little bad, but funny. There's a little game on iPods called Fruit Ninja where little fruits fly across the screen and you swipe them with your finger. It was pretty popular before I left on my mission. I was in the kitchen and picked up a piece of fruit and mocked chopping it with a knife and my companion said "Fruit Ninja!". We decided we had to try that so we grabbed an orange and a French knife, somewhat dull and I went into the bathtub, so as not to make a mess everywhere. I tossed the fruit in the air and chopped it in half - it did take a few attempts. Perhaps not entirely appropriate, but it was hilarious and super fun. We videoed it.

We went to a lady's house this week and were talking about Jerusalem because one of the member's had gone there. I told her about meeting one of the miners who had been trapped in the mine for over 60 days - he had received a free trip to Jerusalem. When he was there they were baptizing people in the River Jordan and they asked him if he'd like to be baptized, but he said no, I'm Mormon, I was already baptized, but thanks. The sister said she totally would have gotten baptized again. Elder G and I looked at each other and said "What? It doesn't work like that." She said she'd love to get her sins forgiven again... it was a little odd, pretty funny.

We have an electric heater in the Pension. The church is always cold - they have gas heaters, but they don't work very well. So we decided to take it to our weekly planning meeting so we'd be warmer and it worked really well. Then we took it into our Gospel Principles class so it was pretty toasty. After that the women wanted to keep it for Relief Society - apparently everyone moved to that side of the room and gathered around it like a little fire.

At church on Sunday one of recent converts brought a friend which was great. She's leaving in August so we won't really get much of a chance to teach her, but that was still cool.

Two weeks ago they announced they were going to do an activity in the ward - another Talent Show. They do them all the time here, although they don't always get great response. Not many people were signing up so we decided we'd scrape that and do something else. We didn't on a ward Family Home Evening. That meant we (Elder Gillespie and I) needed to plan what we were going to do. This morning I woke up and was thinking about it and got an idea... Scripture Jeopardy! It should work out really good and we'll have lots of fun with it.

Today we're going to learn how to do Family Search so we can share how to do it with other people.

We found 4 investigators this week - 2 from the inter-cambio that I haven't met yet and 2 others that we hope aren't co-habiting although it's very possible. The first couple is good for sure as they are married.

We had a good lesson with Lorenza, Jocelyn's (recent convert) grandma. We've been encouraging her to get baptized, as missionaries do, but she's hesitant because she's already been baptized and she doesn't think she should have to do it again. We've been teaching her about it and have encouraged her to pray, and she did. She woke up the other day after a dream and she felt she needed to read Acts 1:5 - that's about being baptized of water and the Holy Ghost which confused her. We explained some things and shared some other scriptures and tried to make sure she understood. It was a really good discussion and then her son walked in and it kind of lost it's groove at that point. But, at least she got an answer and we can focus on that.

The couple who needs to get married still hasn't set their date. He wants to save some money towards their marriage first - I kind of understand, but it also sucks.

That's our week. Love you guys!

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