Wednesday, 3 April 2013

HAPPY EASTER! AWESOME WEEK WITH SOME BAD NEWS ........ 2ND APRIL 2013



Hey family! Sorry for not writing yesterday. We had leadership counsel in Chillán, and then after playing soccer with all the zone leaders, we headed back to Linares. As we approached a nearby city called Parral, there was a huge traffic jam. Some corn farmers had started rioting and blocking the roads with stuff and burning tires on the highway. We got to Parral about 45 minutes late. It normally takes 1 hour to get to Linares from there, but we then had to take a different route. We left Chillán at 5:30, and got home at 1:00 in the morning. It was terrible. I didn't get a chance to look at my classes yet either. Anyway, we're home now!

Dad! Transfers are next week. I'm pretty sure I'm out of here, but I have no idea where they're going to send me. Hahaha is my English that bad?? When I speak it it's terrible. I speak Spanglish now. I'm glad you and Mum enjoyed your concert. Were those the first 4 people you've found doing family history?? Sounds pretty cool. Where's Adam O'brien going again? You might have told me before but I don't remember. That's awesome about Sam's mission call! Congrats!! The weather's warming up over there now? How are the Flames doing by the way? I'm glad Grandma and Grandad enjoyed their visit to New York. Sounds like they had a good time. Love you Dad!

Mum! I'm glad your class went well!! Is it still cold outside back home?? That's great you got to paint Grandma and Grandad's house. How are the youth reacting in your classes?? How long do you take during the week to prepare a class? I've signed up for all my classes now. Officially registered. Also, do you know my work schedule for afterwards? Love you Mum!

Michael! This week has been pretty good. It's been pretty crazy though. It's weird as I've been registering for classes and stuff reminded me of the real world. I remember being all stressed out and stuff for tests, especially finals. When are your finals? Sounds like you have a pretty awesome ward. Does everyone go to church or are there less actives? I signed up for a weight training class. That should be fun. You went to the festival of colours?? I heard it's a blast. I was gonna go but I think I slept in or something. When you talk about the members are you talking about the converts? Most of my converts are still active but there are a few who have had difficulties unfortunately. It's always sad hearing that people stop going to church. Still no news on the extension. Any news on your visa? Love you Mike.

Charly! You can't be thinking about dating you're just recently 15!! Haha don't lie to me! Who is it?? I hope you get that job! It sounds like fun. I bet you were sick of fliers hahaha. You're gonna get your patriarchal blessing soon?? That's awesome!! I'm so happy for you. It's gonna be great. It was one of the most spiritual moments I've had in my life. Prepare yourself well for it!! Love you Char!

Jake! You're getting iPhone 4s?? Lucky! What's the difference between the iphone 4 and the iphone 5?? I have no idea about any of that stuff anymore. Your longboard sounds like a lot of fun. Love you Jake!

Kenna! I didn't get that much chocolate haha. Sounds like you did though!! What was your favourite part about Easter? Do you want to be a missionary when you're older? Love you Kenna!

Izaac! I got a few eggs from the Erasmus family which was nice. Sounds like your Easter was awesome! I'm glad you got to learn about Jesus. I hopè you got to remember what Easter's really about! Love you buddy.


So I have some terrible news. I'll start by getting that out of the way. I'm sure you'll all be ecstatic though. We found out in counsel yesterday, that due to the fact that the mission will be getting a new President in July, the church has decided to do transfers two weeks earlier. That means I am now going home on June 18th - the day before Mike reports. That's a total of 5 weeks that have been cut off my mission. These 2 weeks less are only affecting the ones that go home with me, cause the next transfer will be 8 weeks later instead of 6. I can't believe it. I will have honorably served a 23-month mission. Signing up for classes wasn't exactly a good remedy for that either haha. It felt really weird.

Anyway, in the zone, we had a good week and month. As a mission, we baptized more than we have ever baptized before. It was sweet. We had a great counsel. We learned about bringing the Spirit into the lessons by focusing our teaching more on the Restoration. We have to be constantly focused on baptism, but sometimes with that focus the missionaries leave aside our main message to the world, the Restoration. My experience is that when we teach the Restoration, the Spirit is generally much more present, and it helps create that doctrinal and spiritual base for people to accept the invitation to be baptized. It was awesome! It's so cool, cause tons of the things we learned in counsel were things I had been thinking and feeling for a while. That always happens. Some of the scriptures we read there were some I had read and shared with some of my missionaries during the week. It was awesome.

Some good news is that we now got permission church-wide to write to friends and converts by email. If anyone wants to write me through email, go ahead now, cause I can answer. I'm stoked to be able to talk to my converts more.

I'm so excited for General Conference. It's gonna be so awesome. I remember last General Conference really helped me change my perspective on my mission and on my life. It served as a guide when taking decisions. I'm really excited for a similar experience this weekend. It's gonna be great. President promised us that if we bring investigators, they will have a lot more desires to join the church.

So we have transfers next Monday. I'm almost positive I'm out of here. I have no idea where they will send me though.

Thanks for all you do. I love you so much! The mission is the greatest thing ever. I know this is true!!

Keep sharing the gospel.


Elder Blomfield


25TH MARCH 2013



Family!! Thanks for writing!

Dad! How was your birthday?? You're getting old!! It really is great participating in the work of the Lord. It's cool to read the scriptures about the restoration and how the gospel will be preached to all the world. I've been studying in first and second Nephi and it's so exciting to read it and to realize that we're participating in that. That's awesome that the Nelsons all went to church. Sounds like you had quite the party for your birthday! I wanna read that book you got. Who's Bob Seger? That would be fun to go to Moroni's Quest. What are you gonna do there? Have they given you any assignments or anything? Who are your counselors? You went running? Nicely done!! Haha sounds like it was pretty cold though. Did you get an asthma attack? That would be sweet if Charly worked as a hostess. Send my congrats to Jason! I'm gonna take time to look at classes today and see what I can do.

Mum! I do know Elder Ellsworth! He's awesome. I haven't been in the same zone as him or anything but I always see him in leadership counsels and in conferences in stuff. He's really cool. The world is so small. The minicambio was pretty sweet. I get along well with the assistants. Patricia isn't doing so great... we still haven't taught her. Sounds like you had a blast skiing this week. How can they afford to run it so cheap??? That's cool what you said about doing service. I'm starting to value that more now. I wish I would have used more of my free time to do service before the mission. It's more productive and still fun. I'm glad you're enjoying your calling. I bet it's a great experience. I like that subject too, the enabling power of the Atonement. I've learned a lot about that during my mission. Thanks for your opinion about me not extending my mission. I'll take it into account and pray about it, but I'm still kind of wanting to stay. It's still not confirmed or anything though so don't worry yet. Love ya Mum!

Michael! Sounds like you were really busy! Do you have a lot of tests and homework and stuff? How are things doing at BYU? How goes your Preach My Gospel study going? How about your Spanish classes? Are you practicing? Love you Mike!

Charly! You got a camera?? How was it? You're doing stake youth choir? How's that? What's Oz? Why are you so excited to date?? Who do you have in mind Charly? Love ya!

Jake! Nice job for making the badminton team!! Sounds like you're pretty good at that. How fast does your longboard get going near Wilma Hansen? I've never gone long boarding but it looks pretty fun. That's sweet. Good job for reading your scriptures. Are you excited for Moroni's Quest?? Sounds like  it's gonna be really fun. Of course I'm reading my scriptures. Love ya Jake!


This week was sweet. Paola and Cristian got baptized!! It was such a cool experience. They got married on Wednesday.It was so great to see as the whole family are now all members of the church. I'm so happy for them. They were so happy in their baptism. We had Branch Conference on Sunday so the branch didn't want to use time confirming them during sacrament meeting, so we had to confirm them during the baptismal service. Fortunately, they got presented during the sacrament meeting, and they, along with Stanka and Rodrigo, stayed and participated in all the classes. It was great, cause normally they have to leave after the second hour.

Branch Conference was great. We went with some young men to go bring investigators to church to start off, and then we got there and it was great to see how many converts were there in sacrament meeting. Retention is great here. I felt so happy to see how the branch was growing. The branch had a goal of 201 people in church for the branch conference. Last week we had 128, and this week there were 202. It was so great. I felt the Spirit really strongly and felt like Linares was growing. There are so many great convert families in the branch, and I've been able to see as these new converts have become integrated into the church and have become more converted to the gospel of Jesus Christ. It is so awesome. Also, in the classes afterwards, Cristian made some great comments. He said in the combined Priesthood-Relief Society class that he was grateful for the decision that his children took to get baptized, cause thanks to them he was now a member of the church. I see him and Rodrigo as great future leaders in the church.

On Friday night we had a branch activity which went really well. We had a karaoke and dance night. Some singer from Longaví, a town closeby with a little branch, sang at the activity, and there was Karaoke. The members pressured my comp into singing a song sang by a Bolivian. It was hilarious. Everyone always bugs him too, cause Bolivia and Chile have kind of a bad relationship. He's from the other side of Bolivia that doesn't have problems with Chile, but Bolivia supposedly is always mad at Chile. Years ago Peru and Bolivia attacked Chile, but Chile won, and took some land from both of them. Bolivia then got left without any access to the ocean, and they've had conflicts ever since about it. Everyone always bugs Elder Arana. It's hilarious. The good thing is that he doesn't mind.

That family we found last Saturday was doing great. The mother, Judith, was doing especially great. On Thursday she accepted really easily the Word of Wisdom and the Law of Chastity and was really happy! Then we went by on Saurday, and she didn't want to come out of her house cause she was busy. Then she didn't come to church tomorrow. It's so frustrating when that happens. Someone can be doing great, but suddenly they die off. I'm trying to figure out why that is. I think a lot of time people say negative things to them and stick stuff in their heads

This Saturday afternoon, we found another family that went to church. They are receptive and went to church on Sunday! It's a single mother with 3 kids, 2 of which (Manuel-16, and Bárbara-14) accepted baptismal dates and went to church. They had a good experience it seems like, but I don't think Manuel was a huge fan. We'll have to help him progress. Also, a member named Alfredo is being a beast of a missionary. He's a branch missionary and is talking to tons of people on the streets and giving us tons of references. Most of them are people with pretty big problems like schizofrenia or other serious health problems. He has pretty bad epilepsy so can't work. Instead he just does missionary work. His friend Ulises, who has schizofrenia, went to church this weekend and loved it. Now we're helping him quit smoking. Alfredo was talking to him about how God loves everyone and doesn't make exceptions of anyone. It was awesome.

By the way, I think I forgot to tell you about the Mercedes's and María's baptism. It was done right after a branch activity. We left the font filling during the activity, and it overflowed a little bit. It was funny, but in the end everything worked out. They're doing great by the way.

I love being here!! I love you all. I know this is true. Keep on being the best family ever!

Elder Blomfield



GREAT WEEK - 18TH MARCH 2013



Family! Thanks for writing. You rock.

Dad! Thanks for thinking about my investigators! It's sad sometimes when people are noncommital. I feel like I'm starting to understand how our Heavenly Father must feel with our lack of commitment and our laziness. So many people seem to put the gospel as "Plan B" and choose to put other things first. I feel like the mission has helped change that in my life. How can we possibly put other things first when they're so insignificant? God obviously knows what's best for us. Interviews were great. I asked President about extending, but he'll be finishing his mission as I do, so he said he's gonna ask the knew President, President Arrington, about it. That's so cool about the increase of missionaries. It's like that here too. I love it. How are the Flames doing by the way? Dad, if it isn't too big of a bother, I would love to hear your own conversion story, how you went through that change in your life. Could you send that to me? HAPPY BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK!!! You're gettin old. Love you Dad!

Mum! I've been really blessed with great comps in my mission and it's been great to learn from all of them. That's so awesome I'm gonna room with Scott!! That's gonna be such a blast! He'll talk to me all day about Edmonton I'm sure. Hopefully he's not too much of an Oilers fan. Thanks for taking care of all the school stuff for me. Ugh I don't really wanna have to deal with classes and stuff but I guess I have to. That's really cool about your experiences in teaching Sunday School. It's the same thing here. The preparation is essencial in the success of a lesson. Preparation in studies, obedience, dilligence, and everything. Even if our plans get thrown out the window when other needs come up, the Spirit still guides us because of our preparation. That's so awesome about Kenna. I'm glad she's so open about how she feels about church. She's been a great missionary! Thanks Mum, you're the best mum ever. Love you!

Michael! His name is Jacob Roman Cardinal. Look him up! I'd say there are more women than men, but there are a fair share of men too. There are tons of single mothers and widows and stuff here. I'm sure there's someone nearby that isn't member haha, the thing is I bet everyone and their dog has told him to get baptized already. What were your grades like? You should never wear short shorts. What were you thinking?? Don't say YOLO you wollybasher you sound ridiculous!! A missionary here told me about that and it made me sad. What is happening back home?? I think the best way to learn the language will just be talking it as much as you can and asking your comps to correct you. It'll come in no time. What could I tell you about mission life? Don't miss one minute! Time flies by, and don't forget who you are. Sometimes as missionaries we forget our authority and who we represent. If we act worthily, we'll have great power to help others change and come unto Christ. That's what I've learned about the mission recently that I wish I would have understood better earlier on. Don't by shy about the authority you have as a representative of Jesus Christ. Love you my friend! 

Charly! Hope you had an awesome birthday. Didn't hear from you this week, but I hope you're doing well! What did you do? Who came? What did you get? You're so old. Love ya Char!!

Jake! Did you have fun at Charly's party? I hope you make the badminton team. I'm sure you will though. You got a longboard? Those things look pretty sweet. Where do you wanna go ride it near the house? Why'd you get the most expensive one? You must be raking in the cash with your jobs my friend. You still reading and praying every day? Are you marking your scriptures? Love you Jake!


Alrighty! So this week was great. I had a great minicambio with one of my District Leaders, and I learned a lot! We had a great time, and he had a good week in his sector. Also, We had interviews with President. It was awesome. We learned a lot. We talked a lot about the importance of really committing people. A lot of time, people say yes to a commitment, but when it comes down to it, don't keep it. We focused on helping people overcome their doubts, and helping them become really committed to baptism. A lot of people accept a baptismal date, but aren't really committed to preparing themselves for it, so we focused on teaching to that objective, that the people really understand and commit. It was awesome. That night, the Assistants came and did a short little hour-and-a-half minicambio with us too. 

We saw a lot of progress at the beginning of the week with Patricia. She had a really cool experience. We taught her the Restoration, and as I was relating the First Vision, she said she felt like it was someone else who was talking, and she felt sure that she was gonna be with her family again. She lost her husband and son in an accident a few years ago. It was a really spiritual lesson. Then, we brought a member over a couple days later. It was good. She was really committed, but then cancelled on the next visit, and didn't show up to church. She didn't pick up her phone yesterday or on Saturday, and when we went to her house yesterday, she didn't come out. We're worried someone may have had a negative influence on her or something. Pray for her!!

Paola is set for her baptism. She's super excited. She is completely committed and has had tons of spiritual growth. She's been reading every day, and went to church even though she was deathly ill. It was incredible. I'm surprised at the progress she's had. She loves reading the Book of Mormon and I'm so happy for her. Her future husband Cristian got back on Saturday, so we went and visited him. He was really committed for church and to never drink, because he might have that temptation in his wedding. He even called to change his plans to make sure he could go to church, but on Sunday morning, his wife's grandfather showed up way too late and he couldn't just leave him hanging. He needed to go to church this weekend to get baptized, cause he hasn't gone enough times recently. He's been before, but for his work it's really complicated. We talked about it with the Assistants and he's probably going to get permission seeing as his family is all members, and he was really committed to go, and cause he will be leaving to go work for a week and a half in the north next Sunday afternoon. If his baptism gets more procrastinated, he might not make the decision. Pray for them!!!! They're getting married on the 20th, and baptized on the 22nd. 

On Saturday night, at about 9:00 (we have to go home at 10:00), we got into a house and taught a family. The husband was asleep or something, but we taught the wife, and her 30 and 17 year old daughters. They accepted baptismal dates for the 31st and went to church straight away the next day. It was awesome!! Last night we visited them to see their commitment with their baptism, and they really want to and seem committed! They're names are Judith, Macarena, and Tania. Such a miracle. Pray for them too! They're really young, but seem great!

In the zone, we had a great week overall. We were really blessed. I'm really grateful for the blessings the Lord's given us. This week I've learned something really important. Every month, the President gives us certain "Focuses of the Month" that we work with throughout the whole month. Our job is to commit and verify with the missionaries so that they apply President's vision. What I learned this week, is the importance of teaching and converting the missionaries to that vision instead of just giving them the information, hoping they obey, and verifying. It's the same thing with investigators. Teaching and leading becomes a heck of a lot easier when the people for themselves want to do the things we teach. It was a great thing I learned.

I know this is the truth. This is the true church! I love it. I love serving as a missionary. Hopefully I can extend. Jesus Christ lives and is our Saviour. Joseph Smith was a prophet, and this is the Lord's church. The Book of Mormon is true. I love it.

Thanks for all your support!! Keep sharing the gospel! I love you tons.

Elder Blomfield


MERCEDES AND MARIA GOT BAPTIZED - 11 MARCH 2013



Dad! Work is going great. I'm loving it. That's so cool you met Elder Cooper! I don't know him that well but I saw him a bunch of times. That's so cool. Did he say anything about the mission or anything?? I'll have to look into the accommodation stuff. I couldn't open that spreadsheet you sent me cause it was locked with a password. Keep pestering Scott! Where's Mt. Norquay? Keaton's preparing to go?? That's so awesome. They set the clocks back too, but for some reason they changed the date of doing it. Some people's phones still changed the hour automatically, so a bunch of people got to church late cause of it haha. Love ya Dad!

Mum! I bet it would be a really cool experience to be a senior missionary. What kind of stuff did Brother Low do as a lawyer in the mission do you know? I'm so excited for Trent. He's gonna love his mission. I understand how you feel with teaching people that sometimes don't pay attention. Sometimes it's difficult helping people understand the importance of the things we teach. I think that's one of the biggest challenges - just helping people open their eyes and really pay attention. A lot of people listen to us teach them but don't actually pay attention. A lot of people commit to do things quite firmly but then don't act. This week that happened a bunch. A bunch of people committed but didn't act, and then kept avoiding us. It's sad, but we need to focus on people who want to accept the gospel. Jenna is the new member right? Thanks for sending the package!! That's awesome about the TA job too. Love you Mum.

Michael! That's too bad about the computer. I think the charging jack is messed up cause it fell of my bed once. It worked fine when I had it though. I can't believe they charge so much for that. Are you gonna transfer all my stuff over that I have on it though?? Teaching the gospel is such a cool experience. It takes some getting used to, but it's really cool. It's cool to see how with time and experience you learn to know what people need and what direction to take the lesson. That's something I struggled with more at the beginning of my mission. I wouldn't know really well how to relate our message to their needs, or I didn't understand how to apply it to them. What did they talk about in the missionary fireside? It's always sad when people choose to exercise their agency poorly, but I hope that the time will arrive when Isabela will accept the gospel in the future. How goes your Preach My Gospel reading? Love you bro! 

Charly! HAPPY BIRTHDAY THIS WEEK!! You're so old I can't believe it. I'm excited for you, but I'm worried cause you're already 15. I remember being your age... so many years ago haha. So what plans do you have for your birthday? Who's gonna go? I hope you enjoy your week, even though you didn't write me haha. Love ya!

Jake! Congrats about your team getting the gold medal!! Also, good job for not playing on Sunday. It's sometimes tough to make sacrifices to live the commandments but it's always worth it. We always teach that to investigators but they don't always understand. Sometimes they choose to go do other things on Sunday instead of going to church, and even though it might seem like a good excuse, they're still choosing other things over God. Obeying the commandments is always the best decision, no matter how small it is. I hope you write me next week. Love ya!!


Family!! This week was so great. Mercedes and María got baptized!! They're both so happy. That same day there was a branch activity, so there were tons of people eating once (elevensies?) which they always eat every day here at dinner time. At the end we had the baptism, so tons of members were there to support them. It was great. They were both so happy. María is 88 years old, and unfortunately the brother who baptized her said it wrong the first time, so had to re-do it. Luckily, it all turned out great in the end. I'm so happy for them. They, especially Mercedes, have had a huge change.

I'm really excited too, cause Sebastián's mother, Paola, and her partner, Cristian, are getting married on the 20th and baptized on the 22nd. Stanka is Paola's sister. I was nervous about them, but they've been progressing really well. Paola is finally reading in her own time, and is loving it. Stanka is also doing a great job with that. She's reading and marking her scriptures a lot. Beforehand they didn't really understand the scriptures at all, but now both of them are understanding way better. It's so awesome. Stanka even took the initiavtive to show them the Restoration movie and everything. I'm so excited.

I've learned a lot from my new companion. He's really dilligent and dedicated. I've learned a lot about being committed to the goals we set, and also about looking for revelation constantly. Also, I've learned to constantly be thinking about how to help our investigators. I think sometimes I just think about what doctrine they need to learn and how to apply it to them, but I want to try and think more outside the box to help them.

There's also someone named Patricia we've been teaching that's a widow. She lost her husband and her son in an accident a few years ago. We had to be really persistent to get into her house, but she has opened up a lot. She had to go to Concepción this weekend and went to church down there. She has a baptismal date for the 30th but lacks a lot of preparation still. Please include her in your prayers!! 

This week I've learned a lot about the importance of inviting people boldly to repent and come unto Christ. Preach My Gospel says that people repent as they keep their commitments. I think sometimes we're scared to invite others to do things because we don't want to pressure or scare them, and of course we can't just force people into doing things and we always have to invite with the Spirit and with love, but I think when we really understand the importance of the things we do, inviting others to do them will be an act of love instead of an act of pressuring someone. It applies to inviting people to baptism, to read the Book of Mormon, to pray daily, to go to church, or for a member, to share with the missionaries. It can be difficult to do it, but when we have it clear in our heads and our hearts the importance of the restored gospel, we won't be able to not invite them.


Anyway, that's what I learned this week.

I'm really excited for this upcoming week. We have interviews with President which is always great, and I'm excited to help the missionaries progress.

Thanks for all you do, I love you all!! Keep sharing the gospel.

Elder Blomfield