Thursday, October 30, 2014

Sorry I haven´t sent photos. My camera needs to be charged.
I haven´t read all the emails yet (just 2 of them) because my new companion doesn´t like taking the time to print them all first and read them (that tends to happen with the latino companions).
CAMBIOS! I´m living in a house full of nerds (yay!) in Rahue Alto. That´s in Osorno, the center of the mission. Holy cow, there are a lot of missionary sectors and wards here. They all get together every Monday to play basketball and a variation of soccer (where it´s everyone against the goalie, but the goalie keeps being swapped).
I said my house is full of nerds. My new companion, Elder Astete (ah-STEY-tey) is from San Felipe, Chile and is an enormous Nintendo fan. He´s got a Yoshi plush and he made a Mario party board out of cardboard that the elders play on P-day if there´s time. I really like working with him. He´s very smart and wants to be a doctor. He´s been telling me all about the new games and advancements in Nintendo (Tommy, I´ve got the whole character roster for SSB4), and it just so happens that lots of people in Osorno have Wii-U´s in their houses. I feel like Osorno is just a bit techier than Panguipulli, where some members needed help to be able to send an email. Elder Cummings also lives with us and has the entire soundtrack of Zelda and Lord of the Rings. Elder Vega, from Colombia, is not as geeky, but is enjoying his new house full of nerds.
Oh! To the Lawton´s (who still read my blog), please wish Elder Lawton "Happy Birthday" from me, okay?
Fun side bit -- All the schools 12th grade and lower in Chile have uniforms. It´s been common in all of my sectors to see lots of youth in uniforms in the street. Near our house here in Rahue, there´s a school where their school uniforms are LAB COATS!!! It´s so funny! They´re like young pharmacists (a little Phineas and Ferb reference) walking all around in their backpacks.
GREAT NEWS! Elder Russell M. Nelson from the Quorum of the Twelve Apostles comes to the Chile Osorno Mission on the 12th of November :D He´ll be coming to the Osorno stake center, so it´ll be really easy for us to get good seats :D He´ll be coming with the returning Elder Viñas. Yay! Three general authorities in one year :D I think there are going to be major boundary changes when Elder Nelson comes; stakes and wards are going to get merged. It´s just like when Elder Holland was here 10 years ago and did the same thing. It´s kinda like Alma 4, when people get prideful, the church leaders need to come and prune the vineyard. It´s really tough for the several members who are wonderful and working so hard to hold everything together, but there are so many members who don´t pull their own weight. It blocks nonmembers from finding the Lord´s church and is a big trial for the active members. It´s like the scripture that says that if we´re lukewarm, God will "SPEW" us out.
There are lots of little nice things about being in Osorno. We´re in a stake that´s a little more experienced and developed, so there´s a higher home teaching percentage (it still needs to be improved a lot) and members are more organized with councils. The youth program in the stake is good and there are several who are working on their mission papers. The lady who makes us lunch (the relief society president) happens to be the sister of Marcia Espinosa from my ward in Puerto Montt :D They both have the same voice and way of speaking. The whole family is awesome! Their son recently got back from a mission in Colombia and they have a daughter who´s waiting for the call. She speaks English, so she might get called to the United States (actually, there´s one missionary from Osorno who got called to California speaking Mandarin Chinese. He didn´t know English OR  Mandarin Chinese). And there’s one more guy preparing for a mission whose mom  is less active (she lives right across the street from church and doesn´t attend... ) and his dad is investigating the church right now. Actually, he´s kinda our focus as far as investigators go. We taught him twice this week and he’s progressing step by step.
Gotta go! I´m so glad that it´s going well for Maia :D and for Max :D and I imagine for Kelsi :D
Sorry for the lack of photos, there´ll be lots of photo ops this week now that I´m in a city, including a big famous cathedral. It’s rather impressive looking.
The work is working, the church is true, I love you all, and I´m just about to go overtime.
Elder Connor Christopherson
October 20, 2014

Is it just me, or does Maia go to a movie theater every weekend? Oh, and Maia’s new calling means she gets to learn all about family history now :D Magnify your calling and you´ll be blessed. Tommy magnified his calling by waving his arm around once every 2 weeks and got lots of blessings. Just look at him now :D (note: Tommy was one of two hymn directors for our weekly ward prayer).

Max, it seems to me that your time in pit has been a comedy of flops. I´m glad you have a great attitude about it. Something that the mission has taught me, attitude is EVERYTHING. That´s what charity is, it´s when your attitude is to enjoy and love suffering through whatever the Lord wants you to do, and I mean WHATEVER he wants you to do, even if it´s walking in the rain without a jacket trying to find people to talk to in the rain JUST so people think, "Wow, why is that crazy gringo so happy in the rain?” (Thanks, Rebecca Stenquist, for teaching me that.) That was me yesterday (worse-than-usual planning). I was smiling the whole time. That´s charity.

Well, I´m about 96% sure I´ve got a cambio (transfer) this week. Elder Lawton and Elder Maldonado had to go to Osorno for an interview with President Obeso (a good 10 hours of travelling in one day). While they were in the office, they noticed that the wall with all the missionaries on it was already changed with the missionaries in their new sectors. They said "Aw, well. Just don´t tell anyone till Monday." Well, now it´s Monday and they said I´m going to Rahue, but they don´t know which sector. The Rahue (pronounced RAH-way) zone has 5 sectors in Rahue (a city conjoined with Osorno) and has 6 sectors in other small towns. I don´t know who my companion is either. Elder Maldonado said he looked latino. As far as I know, my last companion, Elder Petrovelli, is in the Rahue zone, so we´ll see if we run into each other.

Funny nature story. There´s a silly looking dog in our sector that we call Droopy. He´s like a blood hound, but really long and has really short legs like a wiener dog. He´s very floppy and the other day he just came up to us and just dropped onto his back and just started flopping around. I loved it :D

This week we taught lots of new people. Just as I leave, the teaching pool just swelled xD. Which will I tell you about?

There´s one lady we contacted in the street about a month ago who showed a lot of interest in English classes. She´s been coming to our English classes every Wednesday and she told us she had family problems, so we gave her a pamphlet called "3 Maneras Sencillas de Ser una Familia Más Feliz" (not sure what it´s actually called in English). It´s got a bunch of suggestions to be a happier family. Anyway, this week, SHE called US to set an appointment in the chapel. She told us that she´s trying to apply the points in her family (she´s like 34 and living with her parents and siblings who are all grown), but it´s not working. It sounds like they don´t really do anything together as a family and when she tried to make it happen, everyone just wanted to go and do their own thing. We got kinda baffled, because we tried teaching about how the Restored Gospel of Jesus Christ blesses families, but nothing clicked. The spirit wasn´t there even though we felt we did everything we knew how to ask inspired questions, use the scriptures, and invite her to come unto Christ. She asked if she could continue  meeting us every Friday. We´re gonna pray more so we know what she needs. Funny thing that she always tries to speak to us in English, even when it would be so much easier if she spoke Spanish for the lessons. She´s timid, but persistent and isn´t afraid to seek what she wants.

I love you all so much :D Chao :D

Elder Connor Christopherson

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