Hola Hola!! So this was my first week in Viña and I absolutely LOVE it. It is better than I thought it would be. From the exciting city feeling, to the breathtaking views of the tall buildings and the ocean, to the beautiful sunsets, to the nicest pension I have ever seen in the middle of downtown Viña, to the great ward that i´m in... I think I can get used to it here. There are over 200 members in the ward, (my first ward in my whole mission, I have only had branches,) so this will be something different. The members are great. We have some powerful leaders here! My area is the center of the mission, so I am always at the office, and I always see president Gillespie. I am seriously so Blessed to be here right now! I have been nothing but grateful these last week. I am so excited to tell you all about how the week went!
On Saturday, it was the celebration of 50 years of missionary work here in Chile! Only the privileged in the mission had the opportunity to go down to Santiago and participate in the marvelous event. My zone was one of the privileged! We all got to go down to Santiago, to a big soccer stadium, where they held this monumental event. There were so many missionaries there from viña, Santiago, concepción, and Rancagua. We all got to sit together because we were planned to be part of the program. We waited in the hot sun all day until 7 o clock rolled around and it started. The area presidency of Chile was there to speak to us. They gave some great talks! Then the real show started. There were over 3000 young men and women participating with dancing, acting and singing. It was such a memorable event. It is incredible to think that only 50 years back, there were no members of the church in the whole nation of Chile. Two missionaries and a few others were sent to start from the nothing. They converted one heart at a time, one family at a time, until now, the lord´s restored gospel has been taken to all the land. Now, 50 years later, look at how far we have come. I looked at all the members in the stadium and thought of all the hundreds of thousands of members that were not present, and I was amazed. It made me remember of what Joseph smith said about the progress of this work in these days. He said:
“The Standard of Truth has been erected. No unhallowed hand can stop the work from progressing. Persecutions may rage, mobs may combine, armies may assemble, calumny may defame. But the truth of God will go forth boldly, nobly, and dependent till it has penetrated every continent, visited every clime, swept every country, and sounded in every ear, until the purposes of God shall be accomplished and the Great Jehovah will say, ‘The work is done.'”
This work is true, and I am privileged to be a part of it.
We had our first zone class this last Tuesday. Elder Stevens and I were quite creative with some of the things that we did in the class. Everyone left so excited (Animado) (Animo) to work. I have been thinking a lot on what I could do to help the zone with their enthusiasm and excitement for the work. The idea came into my head that I could compose a zone song. So on Monday night, I took a few minutes to compose a zone song. I was surprised how it turned out! At the end of the zone meeting, I taught the zone our new song, and it pumped everyone up! We will singing it at the end of each zone meeting to keep the Animo up! This is going to be a great change!!! The zone consists of 14 elders, including us and the office elders. One of my old comps, Elder Saldivar, from Mexico, is in the zone.
We have few investigators right now. But that is about to change. Elder Stevens and I have a goal to find a family of 5, and baptize them. We have been praying for it in every prayer, and we are being so obedient, that the lord will be obligated to bless us. We are talking to everyone and doing everything we know how to do in order to have success here in Viña. It’s a different game here. Instead of knocking doors, we have to ring the doorbell, where there is a speaker and they talk to you through their phone inside. We are full of huge apartment buildings and it is quite the adventure!
I love my comp Elder Stevens. He is a STUD. He is from Holliday Utah, and he really likes to have a good time and laugh. He finishes the mission at the end of this year, so I might be the one that kills him on the mission! These will be some very exciting 2 months ahead.
I love you all so much!
Que les vaya bien!!