Monday, 23 July 2012

NEW SECTOR - 16TH JULY 2012


Family!! So great to hear from you!! Sounds like you've had a pretty eventful week!

Dad!  I tried sending you a recording of last week's interview last week, but I'll give it another shot. I think maybe that's why the email didn't go through to everyone. I'll try sending it separately. Sounds like that camp was a blast!! I bet you're tired haha. In the river float did everyone go on tubes, or were there people in rafts or kayaks too? How do you like your calling? Is it a lot of fun? That's great that so many people enjoyed the camped and felt their testimonies strengthened. That's the greatest feeling ever, seeing that someone else's testimony has been strengthened. It makes you see that all your efforts are worthwhile. That's good that Ken went to camp! Get him baptized. That's awesome that Susana and Kamy are here! Say hi to them for me. I can't believe it's already Stampede time!! I remember the Stampede... I'm sure Michael's eye does too. I was thinking and talking with my companion this week about the importance of home teaching. It seems like here it's something that the people struggle to do. We were talking about the importance of it, and I came to understand why in the church people always stress it so much. I saw it like going and visiting someone, sharing something for half an hour, and leaving, when they're already doing ok. Now I realize that it's those visits which help keep people on track and can help bring back lost sheep. I started to think about my home teaching experience with you, and now I see the importance of it. I really am thankful to you for always being so diligent with that. From a young age it's one of the things that caught my attention. You always did your home teaching. Thanks Dad, I know that you've been able to bless people's lives through that, and you've set a great example for me. Love you!

Mum! The kitchen looks incredible!! It's been a long battle to get it done but it looks great!!! Can we trade kitchens?? That's funny about Maya and Lily fighting over Kenna. For some reason I can't seem to imagine Lily talking! She's too little!! I love how we still have that flyer route. How long have we had that route for now?? That's good that you had the opportunity to share the gospel with that contractor. It's so important that we leave a good impression on the people that we come in contact with. As a missionary, we are constantly wearing the black name tag and that with my blonde hair makes us stick out like a sore thumb, and we always have to behave as representatives of Jesus Christ. All the members of the church have taken the name of Christ upon themselves at baptism, and really we always need to act in such a way that the people will be attracted to know more about Christ and His restored gospel. Being an example of the believers is so important with missionary work. Still no news on the packages yet, but I think that soon I'll have em. That's crazy that Adam's coming back so soon!! Time goes by way too fast... Love you Mum!

Michael! A few people mentioned that they heard us on the radio which was pretty cool. We talked about basic stuff, and tried to focus it all on Jesus Christ, because so many people have the false conception that we worship Joseph Smith. I think Satan made up that lie, and even tricks less actives into thinking that. It's unfortunate because anyone who goes to church can clearly see that we don't worship Joseph Smith, and that Jesus Christ has always been the head of the church. I'm so happy you received the Melchizedek Priesthood!! It's so incredible. It really is powerful Mike. This week we gave a blessing to someone, and she got better almost right away. I've seen miracle after miracle as I've been able to give blessings, and now you have that authority! Live worthy so that you can have the power of the Priesthood. Read D&C 121 to learn more about the nature of Priesthood authority, and how to have the right to use it. It's really good. To answer your question about if the majority will go to the Celestial Kingdom, of that I'm not completely sure. I used to think that the majority would, but now I see it a little differently. First off, we have to understand the nature of the Kingdoms of Glory. The Telestial Kingdom will not be a place of suffering or punishment, but is a reward to those who kept their first estate but failed their second. If you read in D&C 76 you can see the requirements for each kingdom. Read it. Basically, from my understanding, the punishment comes before the resurrection. The people who go to the Celestial Kingdom don't suffer anything (except for specific and serious sins), because through the gospel of Jesus Christ, they have become cleansed of their sins, purified in their hearts, and through temple ordinances have made specific covenants and obtained specific knowledge necessary to live with God the Father in the Celestial Kingdom. The terrestrial kingdom people are good people who were blinded by men in this life, and who weren't valiant or diligent in following Christ and keeping His commandments. Afterwards, they can repent in the spirit world and live on Earth during the Millenium, but will not live in the Celestial Kingdom afterwards. They will, however, at the end, be saved from Satan's influence (hell) and saved from physical death. They will not, however, be able to live in the presence of God the Father. Only Jesus Christ and the Holy Ghost will be able to minister to them. The Telestial Kingdom is for people who do not repent after dying, and who will suffer during the Millenium before being redeemed from death through the Resurrection. There will be a lot of those. D&C 76:109 "But behold, and lo, we saw the glory and the inhabitants of the telestial world, that they were as innumerable as the stars in the firmament of heaven, or as the sand upon the seashore;" Even they will be saved from death and hell at the end. D&C 19 explains what hell means, and how although it says everlasting and eternal punishment in the scriptures, it is more to express the intensity of the suffering than the length of time. Only the sons of perdition will literally suffer forever. I think that God's plan is a successful plan, but the blessings of exaltation in His presence are limited to those who are faithful and diligent in this life, and those who trust in Christ and repent of their sins. If everyone was going to be saved in the Celestial Kingdom, this life wouldn't be so important and neither would missionary work. 3 Nephi 14:14 "Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it." That's my stance on it. Feel free to ask questions haha, even though I don't know that much. You went skinny dipping? I'm glad I wasn't present. I'm glad you had so much fun at the camp!! Nice work saving the wayward tubers. I hope you have fun at the cabin!! That's cool that Mackenzie's going too! Have a lot of fun. Thanks for your testimony. You rock. Love you!

Charly! I'm glad you liked your camp!! Good job on winning funniest skit. How many young women are there in the ward? What kind of crafts did you do? Could you write me your testimony next week? I'd like to read it. I hope you have a blast at the cabin!!! Love you Char!!

Jake! What was you favourite part about the camp?? Did you go skinny dipping too? Was the water cold when you went tubing?? I love tubing so much. HAPPY BIRTHDAY NEXT WEEK!!! You're so old!! Next thing you know and you'll be here on a mission. Who knows, maybe even in Concepción! Is that a new ice cream size that they have?? Could you send me your testimony next week please? How goes your scripture study? Love you Jake!

Kenna! HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!!! I bet you're gonna have so much fun at the cabin!! How do you feel with your birthday coming up?? I love you Kenna!!


So today there are cambios... My hopes have been dashed! I'm outta here... I'm really sad cause I absolutely love Coelemu, but I'm excited to have new experiences too. I'm headed to Chiguayante which is a zone near Concepción, and I'm gonna be a District Leader. I feel a huge responsiblity!! I'm happy that my son is so awesome though, and I trust completely in him to take care of the branch here. We've seen so many miracles together, and it's gonna be sad to split up and leave. The branch has progressed so much. Yesterday we had 5 less actives in church, with 2 investigators. We were so happy to see so many less actives come. One committed to go the night before, and when I called her in the morning yesterday, she said she couldn't go cause her mother was sick. I was gutted, but then when I got to church she was there and had pulled a joke on me!! Haha I was so happy. Another family also, that we've been working with forever, was gonna come to surprise us also, but slept in. The son came though, and we were so happy to see the fruits of our efforts with the less actives. We've seen such a huge change with the Branch President too. When I got here, he criticized us and yelled at us several times, and he along with all the members was discouraged. Now he respects and supports us, and when I called him to let him know about the cambios, he said some really nice things, and was sad that I was leaving which was nice coming from someone like him. Yesterday, we were so happy to see as he pulled in several people to interview them. Rosa Hernandez, who got baptized just before I got here, was called as the Relief Society secretary. Norma Rivas, David's wife, was called as the Young Women's 2nd counselor, and another sister was called as the 1st counselor in the Young Womens. To top it all off, David received the Aaronic Priesthood. It was such an incredible day yesterday to see the growth of the Branch. I haven't baptized much here, but I feel like we've seen a lot of progress with the growth of the branch. I'm so happy. My dream is to see David and his wife sealed as I finish my mission and go to the temple in Santiago, and to come back one day and see a flourishing ward in Coelemu. I know it's possible, and with my awesome companion taking care of it, I know it'll continue to grow. I love Coelemu so much, and it's gonna be hard to leave. I feel like such a vital part of the branch as a missionary, and it's a lot different in a big ward.

This week I learned a lot about faith. I love Moroni 7:33 which says "And Christ hath said: if ye will have faith in me ye shall have power to do whatsoever thing is expedient in me." Through faith, I can do anything the Lord asks. If we want to increase our faith, we have to diligently pray, study, and obey. I really liked what I learned, cause I want to have more faith as a missionary. Through faith, we can cause good things to happen in our own lives and in the lives of others. The Lord will then be able to work miracles in people's lives and prepare them for the restored gospel. Also, I'll be able to grow more. I think it's interesting how the Lord simply asks for a broken heart and contrite spirit. He asks us to be humble and moldable and then blesses us and strengthens us. I'm so grateful to the Savior for His great sacrifice and because through Him I can change and grow. I want to be more humble and trust more in Him so that I can be an instrument in His hands. Faith is manifest when we are diligent and positive in the hardest moments. It's easy to be positive and work hard when everything goes well, but it's difficult when things are difficult. I think my greatest lesson learned with Elder Silva is the importance of trusting in the Lord and the importance of maintaining a positive attitude. I love this work.

This week we got into a house and they basically just attacked us. It was a woman and her daughter. Both were catholics. The daughter, in her twenties, got all mad at her for letting us in and that we were being a bother and talked about how terrible the church is believing in something so absurd as someone seeing God and translating a "new Bible" and how we were a terrible church cause the chapel isn't open that much and cause we waste so much money on building nice buildings and how we don't do any humanitarian work. It was tough not to just "open fire" and completely attack her church, considering that everything she said against us can be said a thousand times worse against her own church. It was sad to see someone so hardened, but it doesn't change the fact that this is the truth!

I know this is all true!!! The church is true! Jesus Christ is our Saviour! Joseph Smith was a prophet, and the church of Jesus Christ is on the Earth once more! I know it!! The Book of Mormon is true!! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!!!!

Love you all family, and I hope you have a blast in the cabin. I'll tell you next week what my new sector's like!!

¡Chao!

Elder  Blomfield