Elder Millard with his mission president

Elder Millard with his mission president

Monday, August 23, 2010

First e-mail from chile!

WOW! I am finally here in Chile! I really cannot believe it, it does not even seem real right now! haha. It is SO different from good ole Happy Valley Utah haha. and it is absolutely not what i expected, but i love it! So, lets start out with the flight to chile... i never thought there could be a longer flight haha it was good though because i got to read a little bit, catch up on my journal, and just try and contemplate that i am actually on my mission right now and going to the place where i will be spending the next two years of my life! So exciting. So after a long night, we were still in the air, but as we were flying over chile, the sunrise started to form... all i can say is wow! that sunrise was absolutely stunning! it was creeping up over the Andes mountains and it was vivid blue on the bottom and vivid orange red pinkish as it got progressively higher. So beautiful!. as we were landing in the Santiago airport, i looked out of the plane, and i thought to myself.. Here i am!!! Ready to go!!! we walked out of the plane and started walking to go pick up our luggage. we talked to as many chileans as we could on our way there... so we said ¨Hola¨.. their response sounded like this... apwoefjsldknva haha i could not believe how fast they spoke! me and elder roach just laughed. We eventually got our luggage and met President Gillespie. What a great guy! He will be an awesome mission president.. we took some pictures and headed off to viña. it was about a 2 hour drive. i just looked out of the winow of the car and could not believe that i am in chile. from santiago to viña, it got progressively more beautiful... vinyards on the hills, beautiful scenery... We got to viña and stopped at a lookout point. we all got out to take pictures. The view of viña and valparaiso was absolutely amazing!! wow this place is so cool. president Gillespie then gave us a little speech about how there are thousands of people out there ready to hear the gospel. we need to find them and give thm the joy that we have and the knowlege that we have so they can have the joy that they are looking for. Great thought... Obviously it was better than i am describing it right now haha. We then got back to the car and drove down into the city of viña to go take pictures at the flower clock. This place is so different but so awesome! we took some pictures and then they told us that they were going to split us up into groups of 4 and give us the address of the mission home. we all had to split up into these groups of 4 and find the mision home on our own in this city that we just barely drove into. haha. thats where spanish comes in handy... we asked the natives where to go and eventually we found it. it was a cool experience! At the mission home, we had a little meeting where we got to know everyone and then went into another room for orientation... where we learn all of the essential of what we need to know to be a missionary. after that was done, it was food time!!! we ate some amazing Empanadas. if i eat like that for the next two years, i will be a happy fat man/elder. haha. After diner, we went out to go meet our trainers. our trainers walked in singing the mission song. ¨viña del señor¨. they then told us to go find out who our companions were so we had to go pick someone, get to know them is spanish, then ask them if they were our trainers.... eventually, i asked all of them and none of them were my trainers. that meant that i have a nice 6 hour ride up north to meet my trainer in Coquimbo chile. So i packed my stuff along with 2 other elders and we head off for coquimbo. When we got there, we were met by our trainers! i soon realized that my trainer is Elder Mace from England. He is so awesome!!! He has been on his mission for 10 months and has been in coquimbo for about 6 months so he knows what he is doing. He also plays the piano and likes to sing! which is so awesom because we have sang hymns in a couple of our lessons and it just invites the spirit so much. we also have a concert with piano and singing this wed for mentally ill kids and their parents. hopefully it will be a good finding tool! He is so awesome though and i have learned so much from him!! its actually kina funny, his spanish has an English accent as well haha but his spanish is really good and he is helping me out a lot with spanish. Great missionary and i´m sure i will learn so much from him about how to be an effective missionary. We get along really well too and have a great time together. Missionary work is alot harder than i thought it would be! ha. there is the 'physical side of it where we have to walk about 10 miles a day, but at a pace where we want to get somwhere fast!... we don´t want to waste the lords time walking slow right? so my legs are actually a little sore believe it or not haha. but also its go go go all day long and having the spirit with you and having these spiritual experiences drains you. It is all SO worth it though. of the lessons that we have taught, i have already seen a huge change in peoples lives! thats what makes it worth it, making a difference and giving the people somthing that is of eternal worth to them. It is a huge responsibility and a powerful calling and i am so humbled that i have the opportunity to share this true message and gospel to the people of chile! We are working with 6 people that have fechas... or baptisimal date. it is just SO cool to see the change in these people and see how much the gospel will change their lives. we are teaching a girl named Joselyn. She has an abusive mother and basically lives on the street. she spends most of her time at a members house just chilling there and helping out where she can. We are teaching her and she is coming to church and accepting the gospel and i can see the light in her change. she now has something to live and hope for. she loves church and loves meeting with us and this is what makes it all worth it. all of the walking, the waking up early... I love missionary work. Well i love you all so much and i love it here! missionary work is awesome and when i fully put my heart into the work and love the work, i will forget more about the distractions and be a better and more powerful missionary. Love you all Elder Millard

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