First, I don´t want to forget—thanks to Bro. Scott and Aunt Annie for the emails. Also, I´ve gotten questions about communication. Every week, I have one hour to: 1st write a letter to my family; 2nd to my mission president; and lastly, to anyone else outside of the mission. Because these computers are at a public cyber, the computers are on a timer and turn off after an hour. Because of the shortness of time, it´s difficult for me to reply to individual emails, although I try to, want to, and it is not against the rules. Some of you have gotten replies and others haven’t. Sorry if I haven’t replied. This is why my mom updates the blog with my weekly email, because everyone can read it. I hope that clears anything :)
My new companion is very hard working and is a good companion. He was baptized about 6 years ago and is the only member in his family of ten (parents included). It´s bizarre working in a new sector that´s still in the same general area. I feel like I know the members in the ward a lot better, and my Spanish has improved tremendously. I´m excited to work with them :) There are some really awesome people. My old companion's sector (my old sector) is suddenly booming with new families of investigators, which is super exciting.
My new companion and I have a young woman in our sector who was almost baptized a few weeks ago. She didn´t talk with any members for 2 or 3 weeks after she cancelled the baptism because she´s really embarrassed about it. She has a testimony and is learning well, but she has no support from her family or boyfriend. We´re trying to help her understand that the members love her very much and still want her to come to church.
Besides that, we need to search diligently for new investigators. There are also a TON of less active members. President Rappleye told me that 1 in 30 Chileans are baptized members, but not nearly that many go to church. We have a program to work with the less active members, but everyone seems to have a different idea on how to go about doing it.
I feel very different this cambio (transfer) than others. I feel stronger and happier. The mission has changed me. If I were to return home this week, I´d do things differently. I´ve learned to be patient and listen before pushing. I´ve also learned how important it is to focus on what I can do and not on what I can´t do, or on what others should be doing. The words of many general authorities stick firmly in my head: "Where ere thou art, act well thy part." I feel the spirit guide me as I focus and improve, bit by bit, every day, and I don´t worry too much about making mistakes. I´m far from the missionary that I will become, but I am the missionary that I want to be for now. I´m capable of working hard and doing my part. I´m happy.
That´s really what the gospel´s all about.
I love each of you, and hope all goes well in your lives. I think about you more than you realize (unless I´ve never met you before... then you´re sort of mushed in my collective "people who read my blog that I´ve never met but still love" section of my thoughts.) I love hearing about what´s happening with your lives.
-Elder Connor Christopherson
PS: Mom... there´s a family that wants me to make pancakes for them (gringo food). There are boxes of pancake mix in Jumbo, but that´s both far away and expensive. Are they difficult to make without mix? How do you make it?