Elder Millard with his mission president

Elder Millard with his mission president

Monday, February 28, 2011

Barbie Dolls and eating Liver...

Hola Hola!!! Como están! I really don´t know where this week went! Its basically all a blur. All I can say is that I am loving my time here in La Ligua. The weather is changing a little bit, its finally starting to cool down. I have never eaten so much fruit in my entire life. haha. I´m also eating tons of fruit that I have never seen before. Thanks so much for all the support and all the letters! They really do make my day every time! Its so great to hear that all is well back at home! Oh... and GO COUGS!! Thats legit! (Dad, would you be so kind as to tape all these games for me...) haha. Good luck Sherbith on Jr. Miss! I know you will do great! Its crazy, all my cousins are leaving on missions! They are all in for an incredible experience.

So this week was a great one, just like every other week! haha. I had a great experience going on an interchange with Elder Jaquier from France. He is our zone leader and is so tight! He used to have huge dread locks like Bob Marley before the mission and was in a hit band. We had a lot to talk about with the whole music deal. I also learned a lot about france and their culture.

We had a family night with the family of Hermana Salina. This Family night, or ´´Noche de Hogar´´ was a little bit different because afterwards, they totally busted out a barbie car with (Ken), barbie and a little baby barby. They get a kick out of my name being Ken, haha. They could not stop laughing for minutes! It was actually really funny.

The familia San Martín got back from their vacations! They are still super excited for their baptism. Its so great, the young mens and young womens program is helping us out so much with them. They invite them to all the activities and are making great friends with all the members.

Vanesa had something tragic happen to her. She ate some bad Mariscos and was hospitalized. Well we found out this week that she has to travel back to Argentina to operate on this problem that she has. We do not know how long she will be gone, but its sad that we will not be able to teach her for a while.

We had a great experience with Ingrid this week. She said from the start that she did not want to change religion at all! She would listen but would not be baptized again and change religion. But this week, we stopped by her house with a couple of members, and she walked out with a sad face. She let us in but said that she did not want to hear anything about the church. She was angry with God due to something that happened with her partner. We sang some hymns, and made her feel good. Later, we got her laughing to cheer her up a little bit. We set the mood then sneeked the topic of church into the conversation. The members that were with us bore their testimonies of why they were baptized and why they go to church. The spirit was so strong!! After being touched by the spirit, she accepted to come to church with us.

I had quite the experience this week for lunch. The hermana came out with a plate that acutally looked really good! It was meat, (so i thought), with potatoes. The first bite I took of the ´´meat´´, I realized that this was not any oordinary meat. It was a super wierd tecture and the taste was horrible! I obviously complemented the hermana of how delicious the food was, but in my mind/mouth I was dying! I looked on the table for something that could cover the taste a little bit, and to my rescue, I saw ketchup. Lets just say that i ate more ketchup than this meat. There was a mountain of ketchup on top. I come to find out that the meat suprise was Liver!! Gross! haha

Well I love you all so much and pray for you every day!

Cuidense! Chao!!

Elder Millard

Monday, February 21, 2011

Oh my spider...RUN Kenny!

Hola Hola!!! Wow this week was the best! I cannot believe that this change is already half over!! Where did that time go? It makes me realize that I need to cherish every moment here on the mission because for real, time goes by super fast! Lots of great stuff happened this week! The weather is progressively getting colder and colder, Elder Huaman and I keep working harder and harder, and i磎 seriously loving my time here in La Ligua!

So, the situation that we are dealing with here in La Ligua is that ALL of our fechas (baptisimal dates) went on vacation this week! haha The San Martins went to La Serena, Vanesa went to La Calera, and Juana and Eduardo went up north as well. It was pretty ridiculous how it all worked out, but it was a great opportunity to find lots of new investigators. Our assistance was a little low due to the lack of our fechas here, but we had tons of success in other aspects of the work. Before us elders got here to La Ligua, there was on average 3 lessons with member every week. Elder Huaman and I put as a goal 13 lessons with member this week, and we accomplished 14!!! We are starting to work a lot more with the members. They really are the key to this work, as President Hinkley stated.

Matias, Camila and Constanza San Mart韓 are still progressing very well towards their baptism on the 11th of March. Their grandpa is planning on traveling 15 hours from Antofagasta Chile to come to their baptism. If he is able to come, he would baptize them and that would be ideal! Vanesa ate some 创Mariscos创 that were not prepared very well and got super sick! She was in the hospital for a few days and is now bed ridden for 7 days! We are still working hard and praying that our investigators can overcome all of the trials, problems, doubts, and laziness to be able to come to the waters of baptism.

So I just barely had the opportunity to play Ping Pong with a girl named Romina. Now, when I tell you this, you better not laugh... She absolutely creamated me! haha Romina is not just any ordinary ping pong player, it just so happens that she has represented Chile in international tournaments! She is a champion here in Chile, and that is saying something, due to the fact that there is a lot of ping pong here. We played best out of 5, I won one game 11 to 9 which was a miracle, and she won the other three games outright! She gave me lessons of what I have been doing wrong my whole life. After playing with me for a little bit, she could tell that I have played tennis because I played ping pong like I play tennis, and it is completely different. I never realized how complicated ping pong actually is. I learned so much today of how to play better! Robbie, Dad, and Brody Bushnell, you better watch out and keep practicing for my return haha jk! It was so cool to play against someone so legit!

We had conference for the interior zones this week. It was located down in Villa Alemana about 2 hours away from La Ligua. Thursday night, we had to travel to La Calera to sleep over there because the conference started early friday morning. Thursday night was quite the experience. Lets just say tile floor, 3 blankets and a pillow. haha. Sleep was not a big part of my night. Anyways, the conference was so great! We learned more about the importance of lesson plans, giving talks in church, and how to start a lesson, take control of a lesson and let the investigator know our purpose of being in their house. Chileans are very distinct people. Lets just say they like to talk alot, and we as missionaries have to be really good with taking control. We also learned a lot about the resurrection! One thing that I thought was really cool is that when we are resurrected, we instantly have had a pre judgement looking at the appearance of our bodies. The people that have been rightous will have a body that has a higher capacity to withstand the presence of God. An extra twinkle I guess we could say. In this life, we need to live in such a way that there will not be much of a difference between our lifestyles now, and the lifestyles that we will have in the Celestial Kingdom. If we cannot keep the commandments here, or if we do not enjoy keeping the commandments here, why would we be able to keep or enjoy keeping the commandments in the Celestial Kindom.

Well I love you all so much! Thanks for all your support and all the letters! They give me animo and brighten my day every time!

Hasta Luego!


Elder Millard

Monday, February 14, 2011

Check out this avacado!

Hola!!! This week was So great! Last week, I was writing my email. It seems as if I blinked my eyes and here I am again... writing my email for this week. I have no idea where this week went. haha All I know is that it was a great one. Yesterday was Super hot! Its kinda interesting though, the days are super hot and the night is pretty cold. The summer is coming to an end. Just like your winter is somewhat coming to an end back at the other side of the world.

Our investigators are doing great! Vanesa磗 child got sick so she was not able to assist church this last week. Kinda a bummer, because now we will have to push her baptisimal date to march.But she is still reading the Book of Mormon and progressing really well. She feels that the church is true. She liked the blessing that her child recieved in church a couple of weeks ago that talked about how he would grow up in the gospel and be a great member.

The family San Mart韓 is amazing! The young mens and young womens had an activity this week. They went on a hike. Matias and Constanza were there with them and had a great time! They are now great friends with the (jovenes) in the branch. Its so great and necessary to see these friendship ties in the branch because it helps assure the retention of these investigators, soon to be converts! Marl閚, the mom, could not assist church this week but the kids went all by themselves and stayed all three hours. Things are looking pretty set for their baptism the 11th of March. The only problem is that Camila is in Santiago until the 25th of Feb. We have been praying for her to continue preparing for her baptism through reading the Book of Mormon.

We had interviews with Pres. Gillespie this week. I absolutely LOVED my interview. He started out with a couple of inspired questions. 创What have I learned from my companions that I have had on the mission so far?创 This made me ponder a little bit. Its super hard to contemplate all that I have learned from my companions in the mission and try to put it into words. I really have learned alot about applying the Christlike attributes in my life. The second question was 创What have you learned on your mission so far that will be of benefit to you after the mission?创 My mission has changed my life. I am a better person for having been here on my mission. If I could make a list of things that I have learned on my mission so far, I would need one big piece of paper. One of the most valuable things that I have learned and experienced so far is that we must look and focus on the good things in people, not the bad, and love them for who they are. As we focus on the good, relationships improve drastically, attitude changes to positive and everything is better. I later asked him a couple of doctrine questions.

Well I am loving La Ligua. The lord is blessing us with lots of success and we are working hard. I have felt the spirit more in this companionship more than any other that I have had on my mission. We are following the spirit, we are working hard (and smart), and the Lord is giving us success. The learning curve and rate of progression in the mission is incredible. I磎 so grateful for the Book of Mormon, i磎 so grateful for the restored gospel of Jesus Christ. Lets just say, I磎 grateful for a lot of things. God loves each and every one of us.

I love you all. Hasta luego!!

Elder Millard

Monday, February 7, 2011

My awesome companion...

Hola!! This week has gone by way too fast!! My new comp Elder Huaman is such a stud!! We are getting along great and the work is coming along extremely well. This week was amazing. Its extremely hot, a little windy, lots of sun block, lots of walking, lots of lessons, lots of fun.

So this week we had a great experience with the Familia San Martín. As you all may know, the mom is a less active member. She grew up in the church and everything but for some reason, went innactive. Ever since we have started teaching them, the mom has just been telling the kids to go to church. She wants the kids to go to church because it was a blessing for her growing up. She knows that the gospel keeps the kids away from drugs, alchohol,etc... Anyways, Elder Huaman and I realized this, that we need to reactivate the mom and all the kids will be able to follow due to her example. As we were walking back to the pension, a scripture John 5:19 popped into my head which states: ´´Then answered Jesus and said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, The Son can do nothing of himself, but what he seeth the Father do: for what things soever he doeth, these also doeth the Son likewise.¨ I have no doubt that this was an impression from the spirit. My faith was reinforced when the next day we gave the lesson on how to be an example, using this scripture. She felt the spirit, she recieved personal inspiration on the things that she needs to change in her life. She later expressed to us openly that this is exactly what she needed to hear. She now has firm desires to change and come back to the church. You better believe that she was there at church this sunday with her whole family. The kids are all preparing to be baptized the 11th of March.

We had another great experience this week that reaffirmed the presence of the Holy Ghost in our lessons. We were teaching one of our investigators named Vanesa from Argentina. She has a baptisimal date for the 26th of Feb. This last sunday they blessed her baby in church; it was incredible. Anyways, the great experience happened yesterday after church in a lesson. We taught her about hope and the atonement. When we were done teaching, she was basically in tears. She sincerely expressed to us ´´Elders, I don´t know how you do it, but whenever you speak, you always say the exact words that I need to hear.¨

My comp told me the story of his conversion. It really is such a great story. So Elder Huaman when he was 7 years old lost his Mom and his dad left him. He had nobody except his grandma but his grandma could not take him so he lived in his school. His life was school. He was a little genious. He studied around 10 hours a day not including the school hours that he attended. The only way he could survive was if he got high enough grades to recieve scholarships to be able to study for free. He accomplished it. he entered into the University of Mechanical Engineering of Peru at the age of 14. He graduated with honors at the age of 19. He soon became a boss of a company that has to do with engineering. The story goes as follows: Elder Huaman had quite a few employees and he calculated that if he required all of them to work on Sunday, he would earn more money. All of his employees were fine with it except one. This one lady named Romina said that she would not work on Sunday. Romina was a little bit different. She was very organized, very smart, very effective and efficient. Basically one of the best employees he had. Elder Huaman asked an interview with her to find out why she could not work on sunday. After talking for a while, she was allowed an hour and a half every sunday morning. A few months passed and he saw that on sunday, Romina always showed up at work dressed nicer than normal with makeup and all. One day he decided to follow her to figure out what she did on Sundays. Romina got in the taxi and Elder Huaman followed them in his car. They stopped at the church and he said, hmm... maybe there is something to this. He went into the church and that day, the talks were about eternal families. This touched his heart that families could be eternal, that one day he could see his mom again. He left having had a spiritual experience. The next day at work, Elder Huaman stared asking Romina questions about the church. She gave him a Book of Mormon and told him to read it all and to pray to God if it was true. He read the book in a matter of 2 weeks. He prayed and felt its true. He had learned about the temples and learned that its through them that we can be married and sealed for Eternity. He asked, what do i need to do to be able to enter the temple. Romina replied, you need to accept the missionaries and be baptized. He did exactly that. At the age of 20, he was baptized. a year and a half later, he made the decision to leave his life, his business... to be able to serve a mission. Its incredible to think that after only being a member for a year and a half, Elder Huaman is out here as my companion. Just think, this all started from this lady, Romina, being an example and keeping the commandments. Look at the power of being an example of obedience. I loved this story.

Its grape season now and I have been eating bushells of them. They are super cheap! Its about 1 dollar for over 2 pounds of grapes.E Elder Huaman and I are working great together. We are becoming great friends and life is just great! I love my mission.

Les amo mucho, Chao!

Elder Millard