Saturday, 3 December 2011

GOOD WEEK AHEAD - 28 NOVEMBER 2011

Family!!! So great to hear from you!! Sounds like everyone had a pretty awesome week!

Dad! That´s pretty sweet about your hunting trip. I wish it was like that the last time I went with you haha. Send me some pictures if you have some! I wanna see the unicorn haha.That´s too bad about your cell phone. I hate losing stuff. In fact, I lost my camera. I had it a couple weeks ago when I sent pictures but I don´t have it now. I hope and pray it´s in the house, I´ll be gutted if I have to buy a new one. What´s the new iphone like anyway? What´s the difference? Para contestar su pregunta, sí, hemos tenido progreso con muchos investigadores. De hecho, esperamos tener dos bautismos esta semana. Vamos a ver y por favor ore para mi. I can´t believe that it´s Christmas in a month either!! It´s pretty crazy. I think I´m gonna be calling on Skype from a computer somewhere. I don´t know when or where yet, but keep in mind there´s a time difference of I think 3 hours.

Mum! First off, so sorry I forgot to send those memories of Grandad!! I had them ready, but I remembered later that I forgot to send them. We were gonna return to the ciber to send them off but something came up with an investigator who arrived somewhere early so I couldn´t. I was pretty gutted. Even though it´s too late, maybe you could still give my 3 memories to Grandad.

1) Boot camp with Michael, Sam, Joseph, Ben and I. In the night when we were fighting in the basement and causing a ruccus, in the dark we saw a faint silhouette slowly and silently make its way down the stairs and stand against the wall. Luckily for us, we all saw it and watched silently. The sneaky Grandad Steward had come to spy on us and see what the problem was. Unfortunately for him, we saw him and had further evidence of his presence by the flashing of the light on the motion sensor in the corner. After a short time of spying on us, he made his way back up the stairs.
2) Math skills. When I was eight years old and he came to visit us in Canada, he taught me shortcuts in how to do math really fast in my head. At the time I was completely amazed and showed them to my Grade 3 class. Unfortunately I don´t remember any of them now, but I´ll always remember learning from him.
3) Acrobatic skills. Another time when he came to visit us in Canada, he taught us how to do handstands and cartwheels. Unfortunately, while practicing in my bedroom after his departure, I broke my foot as it smashed on my bed.

Thanks for checking my facebook and giving Scott´s dad my address. I need to write a bunch of people from university. Thanks for the missionary mall stuff too. About the strap, is there anyway to pay for a new strap or no? I don´t want you to go through the effort of sending me a strap and for it not to fit. I got the Christmas package! It´s really big and I look forward to opening it on Christmas, thank you so much!

Michael! I´m so happy to hear that you ate a habanero. You make me proud. Isn´t it fun?!? I dunno if fun is the right word but at least it´s funny. That´s good news about your speeding ticket and everything. I hope you´ve learned your lesson about speeding!!! Haha. How did you do in the swimming meet? You said it went well but how well? What did you do? I love going to the temple too. Wait til right before you go on a mission, it´s even better when you get your endowment.

Charly! That´s pretty crazy about school being til Dec 23, but that´s a good thing!! It means you have all that extra time after to use your new toys and everything. You´re right now the build up to Christmas is pretty sweet. Sounds like that fireside was pretty sweet. Are there lots of people at your school that do drugs or anything? How goes young womens?

Jakob! That´s pretty sweet about doing fast offerings. Do you like doing that? That´s crazy about the wind. What ended up happening with that sign that almost got ripped off the pole? I´m super jealous of all your awesome hunting stories!! Sounds like you´re becoming a pretty good shot yourself!! I think when I get back we´ll have to go paintballing to see who will really win.

Alrighty! I forgot to write about something cool last week. I experienced some mini earthquakes!! I had experienced a tiny like shake weeks ago but it was hardly anything. But one night when I was sleeping, there was an earthquake! They call it a temblor when it´s small here and a terremoto when it´s really strong. The first one was hardly anything, but enough to wake me up. The second one was a lot stronger and lasted for a few minutes. It wasn´t big enough to cause damage or anything, but it´s cool cause you can hear it. All the dogs started barking their heads off too.

What´s another interesting fact about Chile... There are always couples making out all over the place in public which is pretty gross. One of the Zone Leaders told me of a "chastity contact" he did which was pretty funny. The people here drive completely crazy without following speed rules or lane rules. What´s normal here would cause huge road rage in Canada. It´s funny to see people getting cut off all over the place and nobody even cares.

This week we had interviews with the President, and I´m happy because based on what he said it looks like I´m gonna be staying here in the Florida with Elder Navarrete for at least another cambio. I´m really excited. We did a practice lesson with one of the assistants that was really awesome. I really need to dig deep during the first lesson to find the needs of the person and give them the answer to their needs. We have to help them find the solution to their hunger, or if they aren´t spiritually hungry, we have to make them hungry. It was really cool. I got my scripture covers finally, and the look super cool! I´ll send some pictures that I took with Elder Navarrete´s camera. I took some money from my Wells Fargo card to pay for them. The cost in total 42 mil pesos which is about 90 bucks I think. Pretty expensive, but definitely worth it.

We normally have to go to Constitución every week for the sisters, and because of the travel costs it´s left us with practically no money. The travel costs are reimbursable but we haven´t had the time to submit the reimbursable forms yet. We should be getting more money on Wednesday, so we´re gonna try and scrape through until then.

This week we are going to have at least 1, maybe 2 baptisms. Camila, a 22 year old who we met 2 and a half weeks ago has been a huge blessing. She´s quite shy, but she, by herself, went into the stake center a few weeks ago and met the Elders there. She lives in our sector so we met her one day outside a grocery store and taught her a little bit outside. She´s been super receptive. She´s read everything we´ve left without problem and by herself goes to a member´s house for every lesson, normally arriving early. She went to church the day after we met her which never happens, and arrived half an hour early. She new the Bishop from before and two young single adults in the ward have been great at fellowshipping her. Last night we had a family home evening to which she arrived half an hour early also. We felt bad because she waited outside for half an hour because we were somewhere quite far away. She is great with all the commandments and she´s getting baptized this Saturday. Elder Navarrete and I realized this week how great of a blessing she´s been. With minimal work she´s progressed super fast. We actually changed her original baptismal date so that she could get baptized sooner. We kind of blinked and now shes already getting baptized. It´s been a great miracle, and a huge answer to prayers. I´m so greatful to the Lord that he placed someone in our path like her.

We hope to baptize Jackeline also. She´s about 60 or something and knows the family of the area seventy that lives in our ward. She´s had a ton of problems in her life and has had depression. At the beginning she didn´t progress at all and we were thinking about dropping her but she´s changed a lot. It´s nice because I feel like we are really helping her overcome all of her problems. She has a lot of questions all the time which is great, and if all goes well she will get baptized this week. Please offer some prayers for her.

Natalia has now gone to church 3 times so technically could get baptized this week, but has a date for Dec 10. She hasn´t smoked for 8 days now. We did a fast with her last week and she hasn´t smoked since. It´s incredible. She has a testimony but it´s difficult for her to act and get baptized. She asked us for a year and although she´s accepted that she can´t have that long, she´s still being stubborn about getting baptized soon. I think she´s getting opposition from her mother who´s a "Catholic" (doesn´t do anything with her church) , and it´s also hard for her to leave the kids that she teaches in the Catholic church. If you could pray for her too, it would be greatly appreciated.

A note about the religions here. There are a few Evangelicals and Jehovah´s Witnesses, but the grand majority of people here are "Catholics" but after their own manner. They don´t go to mass, they don´t read the Bible, and they don´t even know what their church believes. When Natalia learned about the law of chastity in church before she had a testimony she didn´t like it and thought it was too strict. She said her church adjusts for the modernization and the changes in the world with chastity. That made me furious inside. It´s terrible when people or churches are so passive about the commandments to only have more members and more money. The Bible is filled with stories when the people "modernized" so God destroyed them. Now is no exception. A lot of people dont realize that God´s laws, especially about the law of chastity, don´t change to suit the people. It´s also tough for the people to understand the concept of one true church, because most people just say it doesn´t matter as long as we worship God.

My ingrown toenail has been back for quite a while now with a vengeance. It was pretty much better, but I wore some bad shoes and it got bad again. I keep trying to do my own little self-operation every day and sticking cotton under the nail which seems to be working. Hopefully it gets better soon. I can walk fine but it´s just a nuisance.

Anyway, I´m so glad to be here. I love being on a mission. There are lots of cool experiences, and the good experiences always outweigh the bad ones. The church is true, and this is the Lord´s work. I know Joseph Smith was a prophet and the Book of Mormon is true. Thomas S. Monson is the prophet today. This is the only true church upon the face of the earth and the only one that has the authority to perform the ordinances of salvation. I know my Savior lives and loves me even in my hardest trials.

Thank you so much everyone for your prayers and support. I love you all!!

Elder Blomfield