Tuesday, 22 November 2011

PRETTY GOOD WEEK - 21 NOVEMBER 2011

Family!!
 
Thanks for the emails everyone!! It´s too bad that everyone´s sick... Being sick is a bummer. Elder Navarrete and I have had some kind of stomach problem for maybe a month and a half now. Every once in a while we just feel completely gross and have to go to the bathroom. It hasn´t been too much of a problem though.
 
Dad that´s pretty sweet that now you´re a High Priest! How many are in the High Priest group in our ward? What did you have to do for the youth conference? What happened in it? Hahaha I keep telling Elder Navarrete about my youtube videos. I wanna show them to him but of course I´m on my mission so I can´t, and I´m afraid to tell the members or investigators about it in case they think I´m crazy hahaha. That´s weird that it´s been 4 months already that I´ve been on a mission. I don´t want it to end ever, I love it too much. That´s good about Aries, I hope he gets baptized. What´s the deal with Anthony? Is he listening to the missionaries? That´s good about JoJo. I wish every recent convert was like him. That would be so awesome if Andy and Stephen moved to Canada. It´s a way better place to raise a family, and the church is stronger. Don´t worry though, I don´t have plans to live in the US. Living in the US when I could live in Canada would be like taking a volkswagen beetle when I could have a Lamborghini. It just doesn´t make sense. Thanks for always being the best Dad ever. You really are the best Dad, and I´m eternally grateful for all you´ve taught me. Also, loved the Spanish in the letter. Maybe if you practice some Spanish we could talk in Spanish when I get back! That would be sweet!! You should learn Spanish!
 
Mum! To answer your question, yes I think I´m pretty adjusted to Chile, however I´ve only really seen Talca and Constitución. Don´t worry about missionary mall, it´s no rush. When you do do it though, if you could also talk to them about if they could send me a new strap for my bag that I bought from there. I think I left the shoulder strap in Constitución a couple weeks ago. If they can´t do it for free, if you could pay with some of my money that would be great. That´s pretty crazy about the speeding ticket, you need to let me know how it goes! What is there to fight anyway? That´s crazy about the cold. It´s the opposite here. We get all sweaty cause of the heat and it tires us out pretty bad. I hope you feel better soon, being sick is the worst.
 
Michael! Sounds like you had a pretty sweet week!! Feeling the Spirit is the best thing ever. Sounds like the Youth Conference was pretty fun. What did you learn in the lessons? Where was the youth conference, and who was it with? I couldn´t agree more about your dancing comment. I love dancing too, and the crazier it is, the better. I don´t mean to brag or anything but my hips don´t lie. Testimony meetings are always really good too. Especially when the people actually bear their testimonies and don´t tell long stories or do a thankamony, cause that´s frustrating. Deep conversations about gospel stuff are the best too. I always did that with Scott my roommate in BYU. I loved it. How much is left in your BYU application? Hopefully you nab that scholarship. I bet you will. Have you done the scholarship application too? Anyway, I wish you the best of luck with that. I offered a little prayer about your speeding ticket, but with the time difference which I think is 3 hours, I bet you already finished with that.
 
Charly! I hope you start to feel better soon... puking is no fun, especially when it comes out your nose, although it is pretty funny for everyone else ;-) Love you!
 
Jake! That´s pretty sweet that you saw a bear so close up. How far away was it? I bet that was fun shooting the 22. I loving shooting guns. Haha that would be pretty sweet. I should have went to the houses and said "restored gospel of Jesus Christ and salvation or treat!" I think that would´ve worked well. How come you´re selling all your DS games?
 
Kenna! I heard you were sick! How do you feel now? I hope you feel better soon. That´s too bad that you had to miss school. How is school going by the way?
 
Izaac!! HHHHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAPPPPPPPPPPYYYYYYYYYYYY BBBBBBBBIIIIIIIIIIIRRRRRRRRRRRRTTTTTTTTTHHHHHHHHHDDDDDDDDDAAAAAAAYYYYYYYYYYY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I can´t believe you´re 4 years old already!! How was your party? Did you get lots of presents? Did you have fun at Burger King? I know you love burger king. I´m gonna send you something with stuff for Christmas, but I think it´ll get to the house late, but hopefully not too late! I told an investigator about you so now you´re famous in Chile!
 
Alright! So this week was pretty crazy. I broke the shower on Wednesday which is too bad. It was twisted funny and when I put it back it just broke. Pretty sketchy. Now we just have water that shoots out of a hole in the wall. It still works but it´s pretty bad.
 
Something funny that I´ve noticed about being here. Little bits of apostasy in the church hahaha. One time we went to take the sacrament to a member and here they don´t cover the bread or water when they bless the other. Another thing is that they sing the hymns but with the wrong tune!! They have it almost right but I imagine because they don´t have a legit organist or let alone an organ (they have a piano like Grandma and Granddad Blomfield´s) that sometimes they sing a few notes in a song wrong. It´s funny. Last week during companion exchange, one of the zone leaders, Elder Glass, taught me that whenever you see for example, dogs chasing a car, broken or sunken sidewalks, horses in the street, people that have "brand name" shirts that have the English spelling wrong, or funny things in church, you put your fingers out one at a time on one hand as if you´re counting to five on your hand. Each finger is a word "We are in Chile now". I like it. I do it to Elder Navarrete all the time. It´s even funnier with him cause he´s Chileno.
 
This week we did another companion exchange. I was with the other zone leader Elder Gregory. I had a lot of fun in one lesson with Natalia when we ripped apart her cigarretes and threw them in the garbage. It was sweet. He also did an interview with Enrique, who keeps all the commandments, but he doesn´t have a testimony. Having a testimony isn´t a prerequisite for baptism but he needs one to be able move forward through the opposition of his family and girlfriend.
 
This week we had 5 investigators at church. We´re pretty happy about that. Sunday is always the moment of truth. President Humphrey says that if no one shows up at church in a week that week is almost wasted, because the definition of a progressing investigator is an investigator who has a baptismal date and keeps their commitments meaning goes to church.
 
This week I think we´re gonna go to Constitición again to do interviews for the sister missionaries. Conty is so gross. It´s on the ocean and because of the earthquake and tsunami that came afterwards, it destroyed pretty badly. There is a stench of a cellulite plant and everything´s so dirty. The city is on a hill so walking around is pretty crazy. The houses are uglier, the dogs are uglier, and Elder Navarrete said even the people are uglier hahaha. Although we lose so much time going there, it´s still necessary because the people need interviews to get baptized.
 
The language is coming pretty well. It´s cool that my blessing says I´ll be able to communicate things of the gospel early. I feel like I´ve been really blessed with that. I have a ton more to learn because it´s tough to understand other things and to express what I wanna say as directly as I want, but I´m progressing a lot.
 
I know the church is true. Without a doubt it is. I love being a missionary and seing people change and accept the restored gospel. Joseph Smith was a prophet, and Jesus Christ is the Saviour. He lives and loves us. The Book of Mormon is true. This is God´s work.
 
I love you all family!! I hope you have a great week!
 
Elder Blomfield

Sunday, 20 November 2011

BAD NEWS AND GREAT NEWS - 14 NOVEMBER 2011

Alright!! About my week then. So first off the bad news. The baptisms didn´t go through. Enrique got cold feet because his family and girlfriend don´t want him to get baptized, and he feels insecure. Also, Claudia couldn´t get baptized because she isn´t keeping the law of chastity. She doesn´t live with her partner but they have a  kid together and she doesn´t want ruin that relationship. She was so upset when she found out she couldn´t get baptized that she started to cry. She wants to work towards marriage though which is good, and be baptized after. It was quite a let down to be  ready with two baptisms that both fell through. Also, our numbers were pretty weak this week unfortunately. We only had 2 investigators at church. The night before we had 6 that were our sure investigators that were going to go, but one got sick, one had to clean at her church, one had an accident and had to deal with that, and one just flaked out. It was frustrating, but we did have the blessing of 2 at church.
Now for the good news!! I think I saw what was the greatest miracle I´ve seen thus far in my mission!! Natalia, an investigator that we´ve had since before I got here,  is a super active Catholic who works with the kids to prepare them for the First Communion. She has always been flaky with her commitments and has been really difficult. For three lessons in a row we were super direct with her. I wrote about her in the letter last week. During a lesson on Wednesday when I had the phone, she called me 5 times which is weird cause she never calls us. I didn´t answer cause we were teaching, but called her after. She said she had done some reading in the Book of Mormon and wanted to talked to us. We dropped everything and went to her house. She told us that she´d received an answer to her prayers about the Book of Mormon, and that she knew it was true. She almost started to cry when she was telling us her experience. She  only read the introduction and the testimonies before 1 Nephi!! She said she wanted to be a member of our church, that she believed in the prophets, and that she wanted to stop smoking and change to join the church. I was almost crying cause I was so happy. She has gone to church once (didn´t go this week cause she had to clean at her church ugh). It´s such a turn around from the girl who told us time and time again that she was never going to leave her church, and I think she even promised her mother that she wouldn´t get baptized. It was incredible.  After, she told us she needed some time so that her mother who doesnt like the church would accept it and so that she could finish her commitment to teaching the children in her church. She told us she needed a year. We thought, haha very funny, how bout 2 weeks. Last night we had an FHE with the Bishop and his family and 2 single adults in the ward, one of whom is the Elder´s Quorum President. We had a super spiritual experience in which Natalia opened up about how she felt uncomfortable about the church because she´s 22 and has  6 year old son, but how  because of her experience she wants to completely change. She told everyone her experience with the Book of Mormon. She also told everyone that she needed a year.  Nicól, the single adult, told her conversion story, Franklin, the other single adult told a story about his mission, and the bishop told his conversion story. The bishop was perfect because he told Natalia exactly what she needed. That she needed to act now to be obedient to God, and that it´s more important to follow the what the Spirit says than to keep her previous commitments. The Spirit was there super strong. She´s going to pray about her baptism. After her experience with the Book of Mormon, I´m confident that she´s going to get the answer that she needs to be baptized soon.
This week we also had the conference! We left here with a private bus full of missionaries to Concepción. All of the missionaries in the mission were in a chapel, and in came Elder Cook. We were so excited!! He taught us about how we need to focus on strengthening the wards and the branches. It was awesome. It wasn´t anything super different or amazing that he said, but it was cool because it was him. We all got to shake his hand too!! We also had a counsellor from the area presidency of Chile there. It was awesome. It  was worth the long bus ride and the most uncomfortable sleep ever on a bus full of 60 missionaries. We went back to Talca and went to work. 
I did a companion exchange on Friday where I went with one of the zone leaders and one of them came here with Elder Navarrete. I learned a lot.  On Saturday, we had some members come and help us clear out a forest that we had growing in the backyard. The plants were seriously like  3 or 4 feet tall because I think the missionaries haven´t touched it for the 3 or  4 years they´ve been here. It looks way better now. I love our ward here, they´re so awesome. 
Anyway this week was pretty awesome. Hopefully this upcoming week will be a little bit more successful in terms of numbers, and hopefully things will work out with some baptisms pretty soon.
I know this church is true. Joseph Smith was a prophet and the Book of Mormon is true. The experience we had with Natalia has strengthened my testimony immensely about this work and about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon. It has a true converting power because it is the word of God. Jesus Christ lives and atoned for our sins. Through His restored gospel, we can have true happiness in this life and the life to come. I know it´s true.
¡Nos vemos!
Elder Blomfield

Saturday, 12 November 2011

AWESOME WEEK COMING UP - 7TH NOVEMBER 2011

Family!! So nice to hear from you.
 
Mum and Dad!  Sounds like you had a great trip to Las Vegas!! Thanks for sending me a package, I wanna send you something but I´m worried it might arrive late. I wanna send something for Izaac too cause his birthday´s coming up soon. I can´t believe he´ll be almost 4! That´s weird to think about Mary-Clare getting married. Are they going to the temple? What´s the plan with that? That´s pretty crazy that my blog has been viewed that many times. I have another SD card so I´m good with that. I don´t think I took a picture with Braedon Lyons, I think I only just saw him. Oh and Dad, I have no idea what the iTunes password is, I think it´s what you sent to me. That´s crazy about the winter. It just keeps getting hotter and hotter here!! It´s sweet. Have I told you there are palm trees here?
 
Michael! To answer your question about the thing for BYU, I don´t remember. Maybe something about Duty to God, or your grades (which it sounds like you are kicking butt in by the way), Chief Scout Award... I dunno. How´s the application coming along? Have you found out your ACT grades yet? I know how it feels to be tired hahaha. Don´t be stupid like me in BYU. Actually get some sleep. Sleep is nice. That´s sweet about your Las Vegas trip. I´m totally jealous. That sucks about those stupid pimps but I´m sure the rest was great. You went in a limo?!?!? Lucky!! And the magic show sounds sweet. How the heck did he make a car appear that´s insane. And of course, I´m jealous of the cars. That´s sweet about swimming. I love swimming. Why did Ben puke?? THat´s super awesome about Aries. I bet the missionaries are just stoked out of their minds!! I would be!
 
Charly! Sorry I had no idea what you meant by twister. I thought maybe you meant the twister game but how was I supposed to know!! Haha that´s pretty awesome though. Really creative. I heard you won an award for it?? Nicely done! Did you have fun at halloween? I know you didn´t get as much candy as Jakob but hey at least you got some! How´s school going?? You have Seminary next year! That´s sweet. Remind me, what classes do you have right now?
 
Jakob! How was your Halloween? I bet you had fun. Based off of Charly´s email it sounds like you had a pretty good haul. We bought some candy and gave it out to people on the street. It seems like Halloweens still growing here.
 
Kenna! Thank you so much for your email! What volcano are you talking about? I haven´t heard anything about any volcano. That´s so cool about your primary presentation. I wish I could have seen it! That´s cool that you got to dress up as Tangled with a long blonde wig. Have you eaten all your candy already?
 
Izaac! How was your Halloween? Did you get lots of candy too? I heard you threw a temper tantrum for Grandma you crazy boy!! It´s your birthday soon!!! Are you excited? Your getting so old!
 
Grandma and Grandad Steward! I think I forgot to reply to your email last week. It´s good to hear that you´re liking your new ward and that you have a new calling. I hope everything works out for Aaron and Amanda. The blessings that come from the gospel are incredible. Thanks for your prayers, I hope all is well.
 
Grandma and Grandad Blomfield! Haha Grandad don´t worry I have had a few slammed doors, but not too many. It happens so rarely that I laugh when people are harsh. Hahaha I liked your comment about the superiority of English. It seems the people in Chile haven´t quite figured that out yet as they`re still speaking Spanish hahaha. Grandma that´s funny about Izaac. He´s hilarious. That´s too bad about Holly, I hope everything goes well with her. That was really funny about how you showed up to church early because the clocks changed. Nice work, and Grandad, your secret is not safe with me. As you can see I´ve just sent an email to you which will be published on my blog for the whole world to see that you didn´t change your clocks. I can´t believe Mary-Clare´s getting married. That´s crazy. I hope all is well with everyone. Tell them all to email me!!
 
OK! So Enrique didn´t get baptized on Sunday, cause there was just no way he could be ready in that short amount of time. This Saturday we have two baptisms. We´re going to baptize Enrique and Claudia. We´re fasting today for them. I really hope that this goes through and that they will be ready. Your prayers would be greatly appreciated. We had 4 investigators at church on Sunday. Claudia and Enrique, and two others who now have attended twice. Hopefully we´re going to baptize them next week! I´m so excited to see the fruits of our labours.
 
This week is going to be insane. Because Elder Navarrete is now the district leader, we have to travel to Constitution which is about 2 hours away to do interviews sometimes. The districts in our zone changed so now it´s us with the two sets of sisters. We are going to Constitution tomorrow and because of that we lose a whole day of work in our sector. It´s gonna be super difficult but I know the Lord will provide for us. Also on Thursday we have the conference in Concepción. We have to leave Talca at about 1:30 at night to arrive in Concepción in the morning. We still have no idea who´s supposed to be coming, but we´re super excited. For that though, we lose Thursday.
 
Remember the family that claimed to have seen Joseph Smith? It´s a sad story. Basically they are recent converts with a completely distinct idea of God. Like the majority of people here, they believe that God doesn´t ask things of us. That he is pure love that dwells in all of us and just wants us to be comfortable. They think the church has been changed by man and don´t wanna go anymore. They are basically apostates. The Bishop has worked with them but nothing´s changed. A ton of people here who supposedly believe completely in the Bible believe in a completely different God than He who is described in the scriptures. They think that God doesn´t ask us to make sacrifices or follow a certain path. It´s interesting because the God who they claim to worship is the same God who punished the people in the Bible when they were wicked. It´s a very short-sighted view that many people have. They are believers but don´t do anything. It´s a shame to see the ignorance and laziness of a lot of people. It´s so awesome when we find people who really want to change.
 
We have an investigator that we´ve had since before I got here in Talca. She´s been flaky with her commitments, but understands our message. She just wasn´t connecting the dots with why she needs to act. For her to fully understand, we had to lay down the law a bit and say that either all of our message is true, or none of it is, and that if it is true, she needs to act or God will not be happy with her. I like to be really direct with flakey people because that´s the only way they do things.
 
With the language I feel like I keep getting better. It´s tough in the lessons because sometimes I don´t feel confident in saying something and it´s easy to sit back and let my companion teach the whole lesson, but I´m trying to improve on that. Elder Navarrete´s a great teacher and I´m learning a lot from him. I think if I just have confidence in the Lord and not worry about my lack of ability and just open my mouth. I know that´s what the Lord wants me to do.
 
I know this is the true church. It is the only church that contains the fulness of the gospel, and the only church through which we can have salvation. Joseph Smith was a prophet of God, and really saw God the father and Jesus Christ. The Book of Mormon is a true record that testifies of Christ. We have a living prophet today and apostles also. God loves us. Jesus Christ died for us so that we could have happiness in this life and in the life to come. Only through him can we find true happiness.
 
I love you all!! Write to me soon and keep praying for me!
 
Elder Blomfield