Monday, August 1, 2016

Week 51

Hey everyone! We had a good week. Probably the biggest news is that Papa John's opened right around the corner so that's awesome. We went and I have to say it is pretty much exactly the same. Pretty cool. Also, they deliver so we're pretty excited about that.
Also, other big news is that my companion's nose was worse than we thought. We went last Monday and the doctor said that he needed an operation so on Wednesday he had to have surgery. So since Thursday we've had to stay in the apartment all day. I was able to arrange divisions with some members saturday so I could leave.  It was kind of a bummer but he's doing a lot better. We'll be back to work in no time.
Also I wanted to share with you guys a quote from President Diaz from his last conference-
"The truth is not relative, it's ablsolute. What's true in one eternity is true in the next. Man's knowledge can be large in one moment and small in the next, or visa versa, but the ammount of final truth doesn't increase or diminish by revelations received or discoveries made. For example, Jesus Christ is the Son of God and salvation is based in His atoning sacrifice. Responsible people can only be saved on the condition that they have faith, repent, are baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Ghost, and endure to the end. These are absolute truths. It applies to every living person since Adam till the last man. There's nothing relative about it. In the same way: Joseph Smith was chosen by the Lord in the restoration of the Gospel in the Latter-days. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the Kingdom of the Lord on the Earth and the only place where you can find salvation. Once again, these are absolute, eternal, and final truths."  Love it!
That's pretty much it for the week but the mission is going great. I love this Gospel and sharing it with others. I hope everyone has a great week. Love you all
Knitting night in relief society 

Papa John's
Elder Jenson
View from the AP's apartment

Monday, July 25, 2016

Week 50 One year this week

Hey everyone! This week was really great. Elder Miranda's nose is a lot better. We have to go to the Doctor today to make sure everything is good though. Other than we're having a great time. It's good cause he's really excited and willing to learn. This week was a little slow cause of the weather and a lot of people are sick and it was winter vacation so some people were out of town. We weren't able to teach as much as we would have liked but this week will be better. 
This week we had a mini conference thing and President Diaz talked about "The Truth" It was really really awesome. I wrote down a quote of what he said but I forgot to bring my notebook here. I'll send it next week. 
This week something that was on my mind a lot this week was the truthfulness of this church. When it comes down to it, the church is true. It's that simple. There's no denying it. No one can prove it wrong. For almost 200 years people have tried but they can't. The real issue isn't if it's true or not; it's what we do with this knowledge. We have the true and restored gospel of Jesus Christ in our lives. What are we gonna do with it? Are we gonna apply it and really enjoy the blessings that God has in store for us or let it go to waste? I know life is hard sometimes but we have the gospel. God restored it to us for a reason. To make life better. To make life easier. I love everything about this church. This is the only way to be truly happy.
I love all you guys and I hope everyone has a great week.
Also, I can't believe it's been one year this week.

The zone

His first completo 

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Week 49

Hey everyone! So you might be wondering why I'm writing on Tuesday and not yesterday. Well, yesterday we had a crazy day. 
To start off, we had transfers and Elder Beard left and I stayed. My new companion is Elder Miranda. He's from Machala, Ecuador and he's really great. Anyway, yesterday Elder Miranda really wanted to play soccer for his first P-Day in the mission so we invited a bunch of members and the Zone Leaders to play soccer. Everything was going great, we were all having fun and stuff and then it went downhill. Not super downhill like all the way but like halfway downhill. Elder Miranda´s nose and Elder Johnson´s (Zone Leader) head decided to become one. Long story short, Elder Miranda broke his nose and we had to go to the hospital and get X-Rays and stuff. That's why we didn't have time yesterday to write. Elder Miranda is doing alright though. His nose is kinda swollen but we're doing good though.
Other than that, we had a great week. I'm learning lots and we're having a great time. That's all for now. I love all you guys and I hope everyone has a great week.

Elder Miranda

Fhe. We tried French fries and icecream with them

a very large great dane

Bruno. the awesome member that gave us the sweet socks

Broken nose-

Monday, July 11, 2016

Week 48

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. Time is flying by so fast but I'm loving it. I can't believe this change is almost over. We're having a great time though. This week we have changes and we think that Elder Beard might be going cause he's been here for 6 months already. He needs to spread his wings and fly. We're not sure though. Anything could happen. It would be cool if he stayed but we'll see. 
Also, Emilie opened her mission call this week. She's going to Mexico so that's crazy. We didn't see that one coming considering she doesn't like spicy food or Mexican food in general lol. That's alright. We're blessed when we make sacrifices for the Lord. It was fun cause I got to Skype and see Emilie open it. 
This week I've been thinking and learning a lot about the love that Heavenly Father has for us. He loves us. I'm sure of that. He always has and He always will. The only variable is how we accept it and how we show our love for Him. I've been thinking a lot about how I can show my love even more. The 2nd commandment came to mind. Sometimes we don't even realize that we mix up our priorities and we don't put Heavenly Father at number one. It's something that I've been trying to get better at lately and I've noticed a real difference. You start to feel God's love even more. His love is real and it's powerful. 
I love this Gospel and I love this church. Just be good people and everything will be alright. I love all you guys and I'm so grateful for all your support. Have an awesome week!

Elder Beard and I found some monkeys in the apartment. They even put on our clothes lol 

the district

this member gave us these awesome socks lol

Monday, July 4, 2016

Week 47

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. We started it off with a Zone Conference with President Diaz and his wife. It was so awesome. I love them so much. I learned a lot of great stuff. President talked about gifts that God gives us and we can develop them and use them to help others. Someone that I really like that he talked about too was how we show our love for God with our actions. How do we show God we love Him? Keep the commandments. But really really keeping them. All of them. All the time. It was a really great conference. 

We have several investigators that are doing really well. One is gonna get baptized when he gets back from vacation and the others have to go to church. We're working really hard though so they go to church. I love it here and I love the work. This is the Gospel of Jesus Christ and the only way to be truly happy. I love all you guys so much and I hope everyone has a great week.

Elder Beard and Elder Dickerson

Happy Birthday 'Merica

Kevin our convert. His birthday is today so we celebrated last night.

fourth of july party - our zone

Monday, June 27, 2016

Week 46

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. Probably the biggest news right now is that Chile won La Copa América last night. Which is great cause everyone is in a good mood and really happy. Which hopefully means they'll be willing to listen to the missionaries. That's what we're hoping for. USA got 4th place so that's not too bad considering that the only thing everyone plays is soccer in South America. I'm proud. 'MERICA. Also, we had a great week being missionaries. We started teaching a guy that has met with the missionaries for 20 and he's starting to progress. Also, if Marcelo gets his dad's signature, he's gonna get baptized this Sunday so that's really awesome. He goes to church, mutual, and seminary now so we're really proud of him. 
Overall, I can't believe how fast time is flying by. It's been 11 months already and it feels like I just got here. I love this gospel so much and my love for it grows every day. It's hard to comprehend how loving and how merciful our Heavenly Father is. We can never earn or deserve His love but we can try to do our best by doing what he asks and by keeping the commandments. "If ye love me, keep my commandments."
I'm so thankful for all you guys and all your support. I hope you guys have a great week.

 Chilean Spirit

Elder Beard trying Elder D's grilled cheese

even though we lost, Elder Johnson and I showed our 'Merican pride

Monday, June 20, 2016

Week 45

Hey everyone. We had a great week this week. Time is flying by and I'm loving every minute. Elder Beard and I are having a great time and we're working really hard. We have a couple investigators that are progressing and could be getting baptized in the next few weeks.
I'm learning so much every day. Each day I understand a little bit more about how much our Heavenly Father loves us and how this church is true. I can't deny it. I know it and I love it. I hope everyone has a great week.

When you work really hard all day and you sleep in whatever position

Monday, June 13, 2016

Week 44

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. We had like 3 conferences of different types. One with our Zone, one with President and one was a broadcast from Elder Bednar. They were all really awesome and I learned a ton. There's a new program that the church has started where they like turn the chapels into visitor's centers with tours and stuff. Our mission is starting in a few areas to see how it works and then spread to the whole mission. It looks really cool.
We also were able to participate in the baptism of Valentina. She's been waiting for a while for her mom to give her permission and her mom finally said yes. It was such a cool experience. Her uncle Luis, who got baptized a few months ago, was able to baptize her. It was really spiritual for the whole family.
We have a couple more people that are progressing really well. They should be getting ready to be baptized soon. Hopefully within the next few weeks. Elder Beard and I are having a really great time. We work really well together. This week we're gonna try to find some more people.
It's so crazy how every day something happens that makes my testimony stronger. This is 100% the Gospel of Jesus Christ. There's no way that a human could've created this and it would've helped as many as it as helped and continues to help. I'm so grateful for the gospel in my life and the opportunity to share it. I hope everyone has a great week.

Valentina with her grandma and her mom and Luis (her uncle)

They wanted a book of mormon so bad lol

Elder Wilcox

Monday, June 6, 2016

Week 43

Hey everyone! We had transfers this week but me and Elder Beard stayed so that's cool. We're really glad we stayed cause we were having a lot of fun and success. We had kind of a slow week but this week is already looking better. We did celebrate Elder Beard's birthday so that was fun. The big 19! Way to go Elder Beard. We also had our zone activity. We went to the dunes. It was actually really fun. I don't have a whole lot of time this week cause we went to the dunes but we're doing great here. If everything goes as planned, we'll have a baptism on Sunday. So that's pretty awesome. Thanks everyone for all the prayers and support. I hope everyone has a great week.

HBD Elder Beard

What the flip were the missionaries doin' at the dunes?

when you wanna do graffiti but the spirit guides you

me and one of our zone leaders rockin some wildlife ties

we found a mushroom growing in the window sill lol


Monday, May 30, 2016

Week 42

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. We saw a lot of miracles. The other day we were contacting like all day and we weren't having any luck. There was a few minutes left till we had to go home so we decided to do one more house. Nobody came out and we were just about to leave but then this lady pulled up and we told her that we were missionaries and everything. It turns out that her dad died last week and she said she had been hoping that someone would come and help her get closer to God. She asked us "Who sent you guys? How did you guys know to come here?" It was really really cool. Then we have another investigator who was gonna get baptized but her mom told her no. We'd been praying so that her mom would soften her heart to let her get baptized. Yesterday when we got to church, Valentina (our investigator) was there and she came up to us and asked us when she could get baptized. Her mom gave her permission. We were super happy. So next weekend she's gonna get baptized.
This Wednesday we have transfers so we'll see what happens. We really want to stay cause we're having a really great time. 
The mission is so great and this gospel so amazing. It's so cool to think that God has given us literally everything we need to be truly happy. He's aware of us and He loves us. Thanks for all the prayers and support. I hope everyone has a great week. 

We made a "Mormon Box" and gave it to our doorman lol

Monday, May 23, 2016

Week 41

Hey everyone! We had a good week this week. We've been busy trying to find to more investigators to teach cause all the investigators are getting baptized lol. Which that's not a bad thing but now we need some more. We've seen a lot of tender mercies this week. One day we were contacting all day and nobody wanted anything. All day long. All day. It was almost time to go home and we decided to do one more house. We thought, "What's one more rejection?" This guy came out with his wife and they were super nice and actually interested. We taught a little bit about The Book of Mormon on the spot and we gave them one. It was cool to see how the Lord works with tender mercies. We almost went home really bummed but that one contact made up for all the rejections. We have a couple investigators who could get baptized this week if their parents give them permission. We're gonna pray and hope they let them get baptized. 
I love this work, I love this church, I love this gospel. This is true happiness. There's nothing better than helping God build His kingdom. Thanks for all the prayers and support. I hope everyone has a great week.

 This guy in the ward has a Book of Mormon from 1957. Pretty cool.

a guy in the ward has a Nazi knife from WWll

"Libro de Mormón" and "El Libro de Mormón" I think you know which one is the real one

this guys geneology. 3,800 names and counting. grandpa would be proud

Monday, May 16, 2016

Week 40

Hey everyone. We had a great week this week. Probably the coolest thing was that we had two baptisms this week. Leonel and Alejandra got baptized after four years of investigating and 35 missionaries. They finally got married last week and got baptized yesterday. It was a really cool experience. They're really happy now and have plans to get sealed next year. It's been so cool to see the Lord's hand in the work. 
Also this week, the ward had a talent show on Friday. Me, Elder Beard, and two returned missionaries from the ward did a little skit. It was super funny. Everyone loved it.
Also, the Zone Leaders surprised us this morning with a visit. While we were out exercising, they snuck in the apartment and made breakfast for us and stuff and then they tried to scare us. It was super funny.
That's pretty much it. I love being a missionary and I love this gospel. There's nothing better than doing what God wants and enjoying the blessings that come from obedience. I hope everyone has a great week.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Week 39

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. Elder Beard and I are seeing the Lord's hand in the work. We've been blessed so much in this area. One blessing this week was we were able to enjoy Kevin's baptism on Saturday. He's an awesome guy. It's been cool to see him change and progress. He's thinking about serving a mission too. And two of our investigators got married on Friday so they could get baptized this coming weekend. Also, we were able to set a baptismal date with one of our investigators. We're really being blessed. And also I got to talk to the fam yesterday. It was really great to talk to everyone and hear how everything is going. It's weird cause everything's changing so much. Also, I heard a little bit about the elections coming up. Kinda scary. I might just stay here. Anyway, I love all you guys and I appreciate all the prayers and support. I hope everyone has a great week.

Kevin's baptism

Hopefully kandi isn't jealous

Monday, May 2, 2016

Week 38 (9 months)

Hey everyone! We had a great week this week. I can't believe it's been 9 months. Time is absolutely flying by. Elder Beard and I are tearin it up here in Villa Alemana. We've got 5 baptisms coming up and there could be a few more too. It's been so cool to see how the Lord works His miracles with the people. And the privilege the we have to be part of it. This Gospel is absolutely amazing and changes lives. We can't forget how blessed we are to already have this gospel in our lives and the blessings that come from obeying the commandments. Something I've realized is that it can actually be fun to obedient. I feel like sometimes we look at the commandments of things we have to do when in reality they're opportunities to be happy. Being obedient is having fun while you do what God wants. I love being a missionary so much and being able to share this message of happiness. I love all you guys and I appreciate all your prayers and support. I hope everyone has a great week.

Elder Beard got attacked by a can of cream lol

Cutie patootie

Chile's Walmart 

Exchanges with Elder Benitez

Our apartment