Monday, February 22, 2016

Another good week

Yesterday we did a door contact and the guy accepted an appointment and gave us two references. Wow.
On Saturday the branch had an asado in the campo (countryside?), we got permission to go! 

While there Hno. Felipe (his dad owns the campo) took us to a super pretty river, we ate wild apples on the way, and he also showed us some wild berries that taste like black licorice. 

After we went back to Quellon for Nicol`s baptismal interview, and she passed it with flying colors and impressed Elder Bliss a lot. She will be baptized this Saturday Feb 27. Happy birthday Rebecca.

Elder Torres’ plan A [his old girlfriend at home in Peru] got married this week, so we’ve been laughing about our circumstances this week.

I had an intercambio with Elder Ramer this week. He has 3 weeks in the mission. I learned a lot from him, his enthusiasm, and sincerity. I love that. All of the new missionaries are super good and bear powerful testimonies. We did 12 semanas (training) and then taught a family (Eliacer and Nivia) that are renting a room from the Familia Fernandez. They had 2 family home evenings and saw the restoration video and have been asking lots of questions. We gave them the restoration lesson. We were in the living room. There was a curtain dividing us from the kitchen where the Familia Fernandez were eating dinner, making bread, and cutting tons of onions for empanadas. We bore testimony. The Spirit was strong. All of our eyes are watering, and then Nivia bursts into tears and I got super pumped because I knew she was feeling the Spirit. She looks me directly in the eyes and tells me, "These onions are making me cry." the whole situation was super funny. We were crying because of onions, but also because of the Spirit.

We made a contact with a guy named Nacho. He is super funny and receptive. He said he was catholic, but was very open, so we were pumped to commit him to baptism. Then he told us he was also baptized, Mormon. That happens a lot here in Chile. With my first baptismal invitation in the mission, the guy turned out to be a less active. Anyway, we are helping Nacho stop smoking and come back to church. He gave us a reference to pass by a friend of his. We contacted the guy and passed by a day later. He wasn’t home. But on our way to a different contact, we saw him on the other side of a busy street. We said hi. He waved back, obviously drunk, and then crossed the road like he was the only person in the world. We screamed in horror thinking he was about to get levelled by the oncoming traffic. But he made it. He was carrying lots of rope, and we asked him why. He told us he was looking for his lost horses. Super funny.

Friday, we organized an activity to help the branch’s energy. We planned to share a message, then pass the rest of night with activities. We invited an investigator named Umberto. He came! Umberto is super sincere, timid, and intense when he talks. He has had a super hard life. We invited people to share their testimonies about prayer. UMBERTO WENT UP!!! Umberto also talks a lot so we were worried. He shared a lot about hard things that have happened to him in his life, and shared his life story. Everyone was QUIET. Umberto opened up a lot that night with the activities, said he felt very welcomed, and now feels comfortable going to church. So that is a huge step.
We are trying to help Umberto recognize that his dream about getting baptized by John the Baptist is an answer to his prayers. God still works miracles.

In that same activity, Catalina got up to share her testimony too. She testified about prayer. She said her dad didn’t want anything with the Church. When she was at the temple in Santiago with her mom and Benjamin, all they did was pray for her dad. Then she pointed at her dad, and said, "And now look. My dad is here. I know God answers prayers." Super powerful, the Spirit was very strong. The Familia Carrillo Lemus gave a big hug after. Later Hno. Mario told us he chose to come back because he has a testimony of the Church, and Catalina’s baptism helped. Wow. Miracles.

The commitment for district council this week was to take a scripture from our lesson one outlines and make a plan on what questions we will use with it to help out teachings. I chose Galatians 5:22-23 for recognizing the Spirit. I remember the first person to show me this scripture was Dad. Anyway, I applied it last night in our lesson with Eliacer and Nivia. It went so well. Asking them questions that helped them apply the scripture brought the Spirit. We were able to involve Nivia more and help her recognize the Spirit. Eliacer accepted the 26 of March as a baptismal date. Nivia will move to Temuco in a week, but we are going to send the missionaries to her.

I know God hears and answers our prayers. I was studying today to receive an answer to a question I have. When we turn to God, prayer, the scriptures, and action, God blesses us with guidance. I know that is true.

Elder West

Also Elder Weech visited this week.