Wednesday, July 23, 2014

July 21st, 2014. SURPRISE!!!!

Hey surprise! BAPTISM! hahahahahaha 

So I first have to say that God loves me some.  I'm back in my little shack with my same comp preaching the gospel and I never have been more happy!  I'm so glad the lord and president have the faith in me and Elder Osuna to continue the work together in the same sector and the baptisms or the fruits of the spirit keep rolling in.  This week we will have tons of stuff planned and I hope that everything works out just fine!  Oh and Elder Osuna and I created this weird food called pasuña cakes. pass-uña cakes.  

Okay another thing about getting shot at, it was not really that bad or dangerous. just a bunch of drunk hombres with guns. haha but everything worked out just fine.  So with this surprise baptism, are you ready?  It all started out with a contact with Elder Artiga and me in the street over three months ago "seriously feels like a week".  But it was a family that is less active in the church and their son has just turned eight years old and was not baptised so we have been teaching them and trying to get them reactivated in the church and it was really hard but everything has been really well and we dedicated their house and it has been super productive and the spirit has been super strong.  He is got baptised this Sunday.  He is eight so the baptism does not count for a number in the mission but all baptisms count for God right?  And so the big day arrived and we were so stoked and all of the sudden he asked me to baptise him!   So we ran home and grabbed all of our stuff and I baptised him!   The water was the coldest I have ever felt in my life, the reason is the church ran out of gas and so the water was freezing cold.  It only could be compared to when my friends and I cut this hole in the ice one night and jumped in the lake.  It was seriously the same and my lips where blue when I gave the prayer to baptise him.  What a poor kid he had to be subbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbbmirged. ugh I'm sorry someone must of spilled beer on this keyboard bbecause all the keys get stuck at the bottom.  But I made sure the prayer was perfect and baptised him only once and ran and grabbed my towel.   But everything went well and I now have this bond with this family that will be with me for eternity.  What blessings!
Satan tries to stop this work!  This Sunday, Irma, who will be baptized this next Sunday was walking to the church for her interview and got mugged! noooooo! my poor Chilean grandma got mugged by some dude in the street and Irma stood her ground and started swinging her purse and like every other grandma in the world those things are heavy and can do some damage.  She called us and told us what happened so we ran and she said when we appeared over the hill to where she was we looked like angels coming to rescue her.  She said that she knew this church was true and that we, are her saviors in this life but the real Savior is Jesus Cristo.........the spirit was so strong and we walked to the church in tears and she had such a great interview and she passed and is so excited to be baptised! awwwwwwwwwwww!   Happiness is seriously bursting through my soul!

We also have two more baptism dates planned with young investigators, one is with Catalina, I have been teaching her for about four months as well.  Also Soledad.  Both are fourteen and 15 years of age and its so freaking cool to see the lights in there eyes.  They are both members of family's that are part members so I hope that the dads can baptize them!  How cool would that be! 

Okay so Elder Osuna and I were starving last night and out of food so I decided to try and cook something, yes that's right, cook. haha  It was difficult at first but I threw a bunch of flour in a bowl with some hot chocolate mix "for flavor" and sugar and some baby food powder.   Then I mixed it until it looked like a brownie mix and cooked them like pancakes.  They where actually really good and I think it was only because we where starving that they tasted good but Eder Osuna called them pasuña cakes. haha  I just thought you would like to now about my ability's that I am learning here on the mission. haha  Both a love for the people and cooking.  I just want to let you know that you are all examples to me.  These past few weeks have been so life changing. I use the story of my ancestor "thanks Grandma and Grandpa Passey" all the time and it changes lives.  We also have so many answers to our prayers.  Love you all!

This little guy would not stop moving around like a wild caged animal

Baptism! Jabvier Lopez

Ingrediants, oh and water

The mix

In the pan

The final product.  PAS...UNA...CAKES!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

July 14th, 2014

To answer all the I have not been transferred.  Not yet, we get a call Wednesday morning tosee if we go or not then we pack and we are in a new area by the night!  Crazy huh, well i sure hope I don't get transferred!  True, i know every street, food stand and dog in the street that there is but we are so close to tons of success and I don't want to be the missionary that does all the work but then gets shipped out at the last second and misses all the fruits of my labor!  But I have come to realize that its not our fruits or our success but the Lords and really I am his servant.  If he wants be to move and start teaching and preaching then I am going to go with one purpose, do what Jesus would do.  And that's to start off with love for one another and to use the spirit and find the ones who are ready for this gospel.  And to be honest I have had some cool story's and some straight up disappointments.  I have cried by laughing and cried by sorrow.  There really is a time for everything and I love the fact that I am learning how to serve others not just me, and it all started roughly four months ago.....loco huh?

Okay where to start, lets start with the bad and then go to the good?  Well first of allI think that as members of the church we should really learn how to be an example of Christ and to be like him. its really hard to do that obviously but still its possible, even for my ward.  We had two investigators show up to church today and one is a girl who does not believe in god and the other is this young lady who is really strong in another church and the whole "go to a different church thing" is a little bit different for her and literally it was a pretty big sacrifice for her Her parents were mad but she said that God wants us to always look for answers so why not try a church? okay So they where sitting at church and Elder Osuna and I left to help with the sacrament and then when we returned everything went fine until this guy stood up and I swear he was like a crazy preacher on television.  He starts off by thanking everyone for being here and then says in his talk he is going to tell why every other church in the world was wrong, the smile just instantly vanishes from my face because I swear he looked directly into the eyes of our investigators, he really went to town for about half an hour and bashed every church and pointed to all these crazy scriptures in the old testament and I thought for sure we lost our chances with these investigators, he was literally a hell, fire, and damnation kinda guy and if my eyebrows where not already white they would be burned clean off.  I was like, will someone please get him off the stand.  I kept looking and our investigators faces slowly started to turn hard into stone, they left shortly after the first hour and said they will call us when we can visit again, huh, thanks ward.  But what is a positive thing is he was trying to help them realize that this is Gods only chosen church, but we can all learn to take  a step back and think about each others feeling we would all get along.  So that is the first story

Second story is that I really am lactose intolerant.  I can not drink anymore milk unless I want to die.  I ove this powdered milk we can buy with all these vitamins in it and I think it has some supplement for babies but its perfect for the missionary to drink for breakfast and I drank tons of it and felt so sick and my stomach just started to freak out on me.  I wont go into detail but lets just say no more milk for me. 

Also not totally sure but I think we were getting shot at.  I know that there were dudes with guns in the Tomas at night and we were walking and heard a bunch of laughter and gun shots real close.  We took off and ran for Catalina's house.   Now, don't freak but I did hear the gunshots and yes they were close but they were only shooting them up into the air so no worries haha.  But yes I do live in the hood haha or at least a place that is a little bit different then home.

This week I have gained a huge testimony of the gift of tongues.  We were teaching a young girl named Catalina that wants to get baptised but her mom is a little bit concerned about it and her father is a less active member and his goal is to go through the temple and be sealed for time and all eternity, what a beautiful thing that is!  its so perfect but Catalina asked me to give her a blessing.  What a opportunity I but was so nervous and then I just felt at peace.  I paused and spoke.  It did not feel like Spanish and at first I was worried that it was English but I gave a blessing and I promise that it was only through the Lord that it was possible.  We were all crying in the end and I know that the lord will bless us if we use our faith in him and always press on with faith.  I know tons of stuff right now are hard for me but that is okay because everything will be okay.   If  I get transferred I will work even harder then this sector, always improve and always try to follow Christ.  To all of the people who say this country is in South America, Therfore its hot, lied.   It is so cold at night and I sleep with literally three sweaters and coats and the roof started to leak again!  What a bummer.  But I  have never been this happy, ever.  I love you tons!

Finally got my Easter Package!

Me and my comp, Elder Osuna

Saturday, July 12, 2014

July 7th, 2014. The Power of Fasting

This week has been life changing.  Every missionary says they learn tons of things in their transfers but one huge thing and the goal is to better yourself as a missionary and as a person and when you end your mission.  To be as good as you can possibly be.  This transfer I learned so much about diligence.  It's so important for us to have and I have such a strong testimony of diligence and persevering to the end.  And I promise that when we do this and use these things in our life that God will push us because God is known to always try his disciples with hard things.  Try to find one person in the scriptures that did not have to overcome trials and draw nearer to God and just when we are on the verge of our limit we push just a Little bit more and then we receive the fruits of all these blessings, for example, attributes of Jesus Christ and whatever we need to become better.

As it is said in the subject of this email I have a new found testimony of the power of fasting.  Like any other youth before the mission fasting meant not eating waffles or pancakes before church and hearing my stomach rumble all day and have only one thought in my mind, when is my next meal?  But all of that has changed I still fast the same but what has changed is the desire for a answer to my questions and revelation to my prayers.  I testify that only when we fast with one specific purpose in mind with true intent to receive a answer then by the power of god we will receive an answer.  God blesses his children.  The story that goes along with this is one day we were trying to think of ways to find and teach people who are ready to be baptised and have success in the mission. As we where thinking we received a random phone call and it broke the heavy silence because for about five minutes my comp and I were both super silent without one thought in our heads for ideas that we had not already tried.  The phone went on speaker and the zone leaders said we need to fast, we asked why and they shortly responded, you want baptisms right? and then hung up the phone.  What a great blessing it is to be surrounded by such great individuals that are so close to the spirit.  We immediately started to fast and to concentrate on one thing, to find those who are ready to receive the Gospel.   Okay are you ready for the blessings?  We have four, four good individuals who have baptism dates....... that is more in one week then we have had in this transfer. Never before have I seen such animation form these investigators.  

One was the first one to church and wanted to take a tour of the building and asked where she could buy white clothes appropriate for baptism and if its okay if she paints her nails whiten  Her name is Irma, and she is a angel.  She is 72 but she acts like she is 40 and she has the best food in the world!  Chilean of course haha.  She is so awesome!  Her son is also an investigator and he has a date planned out too but he is one week behind her because she went to church this week and he had to work.  Irma is one of those lady's who will work and make friends really fast.  She only planned to stay for the first hour but liked it so much she stayed all three hours and even after to help plan a activity for the relief society.  I had people ask if she was a member who just moved here because she is acting like she owns the place haha  But what is the best part is she has a huge desire to learn, we call it hungry.  She is hungry to learn about the Gospel.  Also she loves  She threw her coffee away and uses ecco or posem for the Mormons in Chile haha and she is striving to be a better person.  Gold right?  One answer to my fast.

The other two are younger.  They are Natalie and Yanexia. they are 20 and 21.  Natalie is from a less active family that has not visited the church in ages.  They are a little bit more difficult but they are gold also.  They are cousins and are learning together and are going to be baptized together they say.  We where talking a little bit about baptism and they asked "so we need the power of god right?" we answered yes, that it was super important or its not valid.  Then they asked "do you guys have this power?" and we said that we are worthy bearers of this power and they got huge smiles on there faces and said good because we want to be baptized!  They have tons of questions so I hope that they continue to progress in the Gospel.  They are for the 27 of July also.

Another cool experience is we were teaching this lady who was sitting in this recliner in the street.  It looked like dads lazy boy and we stopped and knelt down and had a conversation with her and my comp kept getting frustrated because she said that she did not understand the plan of God.  And kneeling in the clay, dirt road in Chile I started to think what would Jesus Christ do?  Then I remembered the harlot and when Jesus drew in the sand. now, I'm not saying that this lady is a harlot but she was kinda scetch and thankfully she put out her cigarette.  I picked up this stick and drew a sun.  Then I drew a circle about a foot away.  I asked her if she wanted to understand what we were teaching and of course she said yes. So I said okay the sun represents God and his glory, the circle is us on the earth and I drew a straight line with a gap in the middle and it connected to the sun and the circle.  I paused and let the spirit come because it was hard to say what I wanted to say super simply and also said a prayer that this would work.  I said that we are on this circle trying to find God, he has a plan for us.  I pointed to the line and said that this is the plan.  It's a connection to God and us if we follow it we will always end up in the presence of God.  She then asked what I was praying she would ask "well why is there a gap in the plan?" and I smiled and said, that gap is filled only when we make a covenant or promise with God, one is baptism and I filled the line in completely and said once we accept baptism we will be able to make it to the presence of god, she was quiet for a minute and then looked at my comp and laughed and said "why did you not do that in the first place!" haha.  I have such a strong testimony of the power of the spirit and this priesthood and it will always help us, only if we are worthy to hold it.  I promise that it will always be there.
This is my testimony that I believe without a doubt if I did not fast we would not of had this great of a week I'm so glad for my bishop that he has taught me to always follow God and to be open minded.  How blessed I am!  I pray for you all everyday and I hope you guys love your lives!  My family has a photo and a saying on our fridge that says, "Go confidently in the direction of your dreams!  Live the life you imagined" that is the key.  Always be willing to dream and then go make it possible.

**The photos are not loading, I will send them next week.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

June 30th, 2014: A week in the best two years of my life!

First of all I'm so sorry for getting you all discouraged and thank you guys for your prayers and for your positive words they boosted me up a ton.  This week was way better and I promise that I have felt the spirit so strong that it is so crazy!  I'm glad that its warm where you guys are because I am literally freezing but thank goodness I can layer up.  I have had so many spiritual experiences this week and I cant wait to tell you all about things.  Ready? Vamos!

This week was seriously so spiritual! my first experience I would like to share with you is that I received this huge answer from God.  And who would of thought it was not by some angel but it was through the word of God in the scriptures.  So last week was really hard for me right?  Well me and my comp talked it over and we decided we where not giving up just yet so we decided to walk faster study harder and focus on the attributes of Christ.   For me I had trouble with finding and receiving revelation for what to teach these investigators so I went into our room and offered up a prayer that I myself had no idea I could give.  It really was the pleading of my soul and as I was reading in the scriptures I came across one that changed my is probably the scripture that I will have at my funeral and it is the best. It's in Moroni 7: 45- 47.

45 And charity suffereth long, and is kind, and envieth not, and is not puffed up, seeketh not her own, is not easily provoked, thinketh no evil, and rejoiceth not in iniquity but rejoiceth in the truth, beareth all things, believeth all things, hopeth all things, endureth all things.
 46 Wherefore, my beloved brethren, if ye have not charity, ye are nothing, for charity never faileth. Wherefore, cleave unto charity, which is the greatest of all, for all things must fail—
 47 But charity is the pure love of Christ, and it endureth forever; and whoso is found possessed of it at the last day, it shall be well with him.

When I read verse forty seven the words, "charity is the pure love of Christ" I felt this surge of power come over me, not a forceful surge but a slow warm love and I could not help but to start crying.  The words were and still seem bigger than the other words in the Book of Mormon.  literally to me they seem like they were doubled in size.   But its so true,  charity is the pure love of Christ.  Never before have I felt such a sensation and such a verification that this work, this church is true.  I have devoted these two years of my life to charity and to this church but most of all we are hear to teach and preach.  Most of all I want you guys to know that I will always try to have this charity and love that Christ had for the people he taught.  After all we are all sons and daughters, brothers and sister so why not try to get along and help each other?  True I was one who did not follow this that much before my mission and if I offended any of you I beg you to at least accept my apology.  This was my first experience.

Another little experience is that this brother, Hermano Demayo gave me this jacket so I could look like Jeff Gordan.  haha  Yes its true it was hard to understand but once I understood I could not help but feel such a sweet sincere love for my investigators and especially for this 90 year old man who was once a sailor who cussed drank and could fight with the rest of them but now is a soft sincere man who has been changed by the love of Christ.  And yes, he sings like a sailor, loud and annoying but its better then mine so I just join in and somehow the spirit always comes.

The other is that we are now teaching a investigator who is younger.  Her name is Natalie and she is about twenty years old.  Her family were members but are long since inactive and they loved the missionaries and they accepted us with open arms.  We are having family home evenings and I am making s'mores for them tonight after the lesson so lets pray two things go well, the lesson and that I can find Graham crackers.  She is really receptive and thinks its only right that the people in the Americas had conversations with the Savior as well as in Jerusalem.  It is such a blessing.  But also she has this cousin who is seriously hard core angelic and she likes to just go to town and preach.  But for some reason her heart has been softened and she listens and likes our lessons and my comp bore his testimony and I did as well and she started crying and asking why she felt like this.  I answered with a laugh,  It's the spirit and don't worry I'm getting used to crying to. haha.  Its so great to see the power of the Lord spill through my lips and bear testimony of the true word of God.  I hope that they progress and that they will come to church.

So this transfer has been super fast and I only have about a week and a half left in the transfer! What!  Time flys when you are so absorbed in this work.  We are trying so hard and have investigators who are ready for baptism just they need to preserve to the end!  We have two that have huge trials going on right now.  One is Catalina who has been taking the lessons since my second week in the field and the other is Christian. Their trials are about the same.  The dad of Catalina is a member and wants her to take the lessons but the mom will not let her.  So right now they are praying to see whats up.  ugh.........she has so much potential its so sad to see her not able to take some lessons.  The other is Christian who has a grandma that was a member but she has had some bad experiences with some members and every time we see if Christian is home she will answer and lie to us and say he is gone and make us leave when really he is in the house.  It's so horrible to see her and to be honest it's hard to have love for her but hey Christ loved all right?

We are working with Osvaldo who was excommunicated.  He loves the church and reads the scriptures everyday.  But something happened where he was excommunicated and a ton of members fell away because they had so much love for him.  He was their bishop.......and when he fell away others where excommunicated and I heard that over half the ward left in protest and they had to even close down a church.  So it was some serious stuff that went down.  But he is doing well and we watched a Mormon message and we all cried...why am i turning into my dad?  It's Karma haha

I love you all and want you to know this church is true.  That God has not closed up heaven. You can and you will receive a answer to your prayers.  Follow Jesus Christ and he has a plan for us.  It's not hard, true some parts are harder then others but I promise it will all work out in the end.  I pray for you simper (always) .  Gracias por todos (Thank  you for everything). 
P.S.   Yes there were riots in the streets and I saw people burning stuff and crying in the streets.  This old lady was sitting in the street crying and all these kids where crying.  It was more sad.  For these people football is the way they express themselves and how Chile shows their pride.  It's like getting slapped for them.  But what can you do.  I now don't like Brazil haha.  Oh and I had this completo that was as long as my my bro Nate would say, thats one craaaazzzzy good tortilla, or completo in this case!

Craaazzzzyyy good Completo!
P-day food.  It's about six kinda expensive.  Also Kit Kats are way expensive.

Hey mom and others, guess what!  I'm now 159 pounds. remember I started at 184...........crazy.  The Lord really does bless me in every way. haha.  I look like a clown in my jeans.  I need suspenders.