Monday, December 30, 2013

Soldiers do give kisses

(Sorry this letter is out of order...I just found it sitting in drafts and didn't want to miss it)

Happy November everyone!
This Week was a slow and a testimony building week.
It started out with a Zone conference on Tuesday, where the church has come out with a new book to help with missionary stress. My stress level has gone down a lot in this area since I've been done with the tax audit and taken care of other things which is nice.  I don't have that much stress on my shoulders. Since Sunday was Fast and Testimony meeting I didn't have to have a talk ready "just in case" someone wasn't there, although I did have to give an emergency lesson in priesthood.
This week had been a little bit colder but it is expecting to be warming up a lot.
We also found a nice cute little family this week, of a man and his wife (I hope they are married) and they have a little daughter that turned 3 on Jade´s Birthday.  She's a super cute little girl. She was playing with some soldiers and she was making them kiss and I told her that soldiers don't kiss and she looked at me like I had just told her that Santa wasn't real and she started to cry so we had to tell her that soldiers do give kisses, and she went away happily making the soldiers kiss, haha, just a cute little family.
Halloween, it's kind of a holiday that is starting, and it has mixed feeling. Half the people think that it is a gringo holiday, a quarter don't care and a quarter actually celebrate it. Most people open the door to trick or treaters and yell at them saying that its a gringo holiday or that its of the devil and stuff like that. They just can't celebrate a good holiday. The day after is more of a holiday as they call it "Dia de los Santos" and its similar to memorial day where all go the cemetery and put flowers on the graves and give a prayer to them (Catholic holiday).
They also had an evangelical holiday and we have had the privilege of evangelicals yelling and singing outside our house.
Chile has so much faith but its focused in the wrong things.
Well, that was our week, maybe next will be a bit more exciting.
Love, Elder Nelson


Happy New Year!

Happy New Year!
Dear family and friends, I hope that all had a very Merry Christmas. I had some great highlights of this week. The biggest was the grand opportunity that I have two times every year to be able to talk with my family by Skype which was great. I got to see the new additions to the family with some new wiener dogs as well which was great to see everyone and crazy to think I have only one phone call home left.

Here in Chile, it is bigger to celebrate Christmas on the 24th with a lot of food that night and then Santa comes that day. It's a little different. We were invited to go to a party and I got a phone call from a member asking us if we would like to have a Santa suit, thinking that this party would be having a bunch of kids. I put on the Santa suit and took all the toys into the kids. They loved it except for a little girl who got really scared and wouldn't come near me haha. It was so great to see the face of some of the kids light up when they saw that Santa came. On Christmas day, it is a lot more relaxed and we went over to have a barbecue at our branch presidents house, where we had a bunch of lamb and pork, and they cook it on a pole, slowly rotating the stick. It was some really good food.

This week was also fun because I had a bad cough left over from my allergy experience.  I coughed for a couple days including Friday so I wasn't able to leave because I couldn't talk without coughing and ended up throwing up but I'm all good now. I was nice to be done with that problem and finally be back to working normally.  On Sunday I was able to play a special number for sacrament meeting - I Feel My Savior's Love.

Well, I guess after six short weeks in Ancud, it is already time for me to go. On Saturday, President Rappleye called me to tell me of my cambios. I am going back to Puerto Montt but as a Zone leader. My new companion will be Elder Miño from Argentina. It will be a good new responsibility. I will be learning a ton during that time.

Well, I wish everyone a wonderful and safe new year.

I love you all and am so thankful for all the love and prayers that you give me.

Love, Elder Nelson

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Feliz Navidad! and Bad Allergies!

Feliz Navidad!!

This last week was a good week, we are slowly finding a lot more people to be teaching which is great. We have been working really hard and are starting to see some more people that are ready to receive this gospel.

This Friday was great because we had a big family home evening in the church with all of the members and the missionary work was in charge of everything. We put the sisters in charge of the lesson and activity and the elders (elder Dunn and I) were in charge of the refreshments. The sisters shared something on love or something like that we weren't really there, so for the refreshments, we were going to do sopapillas (like little scones), but it was so hot that we decided to change it up and we made a ice cream sundae bar. That was such a big hit, they all loved it on this super hot day as it has been around 24-30 degrees Celsius, we had strawberries and chocolate syrup and nuts and a bunch of other tings and everybody loved it, I don't think that's something that they had really had before. 

This week, I ended up doing another intercambio with the zone leaders, I did it with an elder from Lima, Peru, and I stayed in Ancud directing the sector. We had a really good day.

Well, I had a really bad problem with my allergies (worse than that time we played mini golf), my eyes swelled up really bad to where I couldn't see and were really red. on Sunday in church, everybody thought that I had a black eye because my eye was so dark and huge and swollen, i may have discovered an allergy to cats, haha good, because I am never going to have cats anyway.

Well, I am very excited for this Christmas, it is going to be a great time, being able to serve the person, of which we are celebrating his birth. What a special time of the year. I am so thankful for our Salvador, and I know that He lives. We need to strive to keep the most Christ in christmas as possible ad really celebrate this special time. I know that i am far away from home but get to be a little closer this Christmas.

Merry Christmas to all.

Love, Elder Nelson

Good-bye Oscar!

Wow, what a hot week, its hard to imagine that it is almost Christmas with the heat that we have been experiencing here in southern Chile, I have finally bee using short sleeve shirts and sleeping in shorts and a t-shirt which I haven't done in a long time. I hope that it keeps it up until after Christmas.

This week, we had a zone conference in Puerto Montt, so we lost some days of working as we went Tuesday afternoon and got back to Ancud Wednesday night, but it was a good zone conference, we all got santa hats and sang Christmas songs. I got to see alot of old friends which was really nice, because its such a large mission that sometimes you never see each other again.

We had a weird experience, we were teaching a lady on Monday, and she said she wanted to go to church and an activity on saturday night, no friday we got a phone call letting us know that she died, so we went to her viewing which chilean viewings are really weird because they are in the house of the person, even if the house is really small or has a roof of 5 feet tall, which this house did. And we didn't know anyone and it was kind of like an evangelical viewing which was kind of awkward but the husband was happy that we came. Weird case though, they aren't saying why she died, she was only about 40 years old and died one day to the next, that was strange but oh well.

This week, we had a Christmas devotional where we watched a recording of the First Presidency Christmas devotional that happened last week, it was really good and a good amount of people came for an activity in chile haha, including some people that aren't members so we are hoping that we are going to be able to start teaching some of them.

Well, that was our week, I am getting really excited to be able to talk to my family next week and am amazing at how fast the time goes, I can't believe that i already have a year and a half in the mission, and i know that this next 6 months is going to go by so fast, i just need to take advantage of it.
Thanks for all and that all have a very Merry Christmas season.
Elder Nelson

May 2001 - December 8, 2013

I also want to say good-bye to the best friend a boy could ever have. He gave me the best 12 years of my life and I love him so much.  He was the best dog in the world. I am so glad that I had him for all that time, through all the naughty and adorable things that he did, he will always have a very special place in my heart and the heart of all the people who knew and loved him! What a special dog. I know that he will be in heaven because it would be hell without him.
I love you Oscar Meyer weiner dog. Thanks for the best 12 years a boy could ask for, I will always love and miss you dearly.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Hot weather in Chile

Happy December everyone.

It was a great week, especially with the work, we were starting to find a lot more people to be teaching which is wonderful. We found some great people who I am hoping that start progressing, it was hard because we are still having the biggest problem with people that they aren't coming to church. But we are definitely starting to teach a lot more people which is a nice thing, as this sector has struggled a little bit in the past to find and help people to progress. It is going well.

Also on Tuesday, I had an intercambio where I had the opportunity to go to Castro (the capital of Chiloe and the city that has palofitas (houses on stilts), I went with a Chilean named elder Burgos which was a good time.

I have been continuing to play the piano a lot in church which is great, I played at a baptism that the sister missionaries in Ancud had, where I was also asked to pay for a special musical number in which the sisters sang. It is a good experience, only frustrating because nobody ever thinks to give me a little notice, but luckily I have been doing fine in all of my songs that I have been asked to play.

So we had a family home evening of the branch on Friday night, and I probably had the funniest time that I have had in my entire mission, we played the game two truths and a lie, where you say two truths and a lie in any order and the other people have to guess it, well a couple people didn't understand the concept at all, one who is kind of an odd guy (he is semi homeless but always talks to me and wants the branch president to make him a website to meet single members in Chiloe, but he is a weird guy and when it was his turn in the game, he told me the two truths which were the things that he always tells me and then we said and a lie and he thought for a second and  said "pass" , I was dying laughing, it was the best. 

This week was so hot, I actually didn't even leave with a jacket a couple days just wearing a short sleeve shirt. Just loving the sun right now and getting ready for a Christmas BBQ. It is great, I got really burnt the other day and it really hurt but it doesn't hurt that bad when if hear how cold it is for all of you.

I hope everyone is having a great week, getting ready for the Christmas season.

I love you all,

Love Elder Nelson

Happy Thanksgiving!

December 2, 2013
Hola todos y feliz acción de gracias de la gran Isla de Chiloé!

I sure hope that everyone ate a bunch of turkey and mashed potatoes for me because people here don't understand the concept  and thinks its just another weird made up gringo holiday like Halloween .

So we ended up not doing anything special to celebrate but it is nice because everyone is starting to put up their Christmas trees which I absolutely love, as it reminds me of home. I am thinking a lot more about Christ this time of year and thinking about all the things that we should be doing for him rather than expecting all the things that we expect.

This week was great weather wise for some days and horrible for some other days. We had a handful where I didn't have to wear my jacket and some others of a bunch of rain where I had to bust out the rain pants again. I am hoping for a nice warm Christmas here but we will see.
right now, we are focusing a lot in trying to help the members and investigators and every single person be reading the book of Mormon, which is awesome as it is really helping change the way people are and really softens them which I love.

So, we have lunch with the mamita, which I love this mamita, she is so much fun and we eat with her daughter and sun in law and her 3 year old granddaughter and 10 month old granddaughter, it is so much fun, at the beginning the 3 year old who is extremely shy to new people couldn't even be n the same room together but now we are friends but with the 10 month old baby, it makes me think a lot about Callie and how much fun she will be when I get home, although she will be just a little bit bigger and will maybe be walking/talking.

This week, was good in the missionary work, we found a handful of new people and put them with baptismal date but we are just having a really hard time getting people to come to church, that is just a big trial but we are working to get over it. Its just hard when people don't want to keep the commitments that they make. Its good though. I am hoping to get some baptisms this month for Christmas but we will see.

I hope all are enjoying this holiday season, I love you all and am so grateful for all that you do for me.

Love Elder Nelson

Greetings from the Grand Island of Chiloé

November 25, 2013
Well, this was a great week, i have gotten to my new sector safely and i absolutley love it here, it is huge, we have such a large sector which is wonderful, and it is gorgeous, on side we have a bunch of rolling hills and on the other side is the ocean and other little islands, it is one of the prettiest places, and there are so many people here, and the chilotes (People from chiloé) are the nicest people. Its fun because chiloè has so many mythys and legends (I`ll send piccs of the myths and legends), and so much tourism and such a pretty chapel, and its kindof like its own little island country. Its very big, which i didnt know either. You all need to look up the himno de chiloè which is awesome.

My companion is named Elder Dunn, he is from Goodyear, Arizona. He just barely finished his training, so that is fun to be with a young elder (18) with good energy and is excited to work here in ancud. I am really excited for this next cambio.In our branch, i heard that normally about 30-40 attend but yesterday in church we had 65 which was great for here and we are going to be having even more growth here, as there are 6 missionaries in ancud, 4 sisters and us two elders. To get here to chiloè, we have to take a bus from puerto montt about an hour and a half, and then a boat for about 30 minutes and then a bus for another 30 minutes as it is at the north of chiloé.

Friday night we had an activity in the church, and right before the children were practicing for their primary program, and i got in and asked them if they would like a piano player and the primary president was so excited and grateful, and so were all the children, as they al want to be taught the piano. It was alot of fun, all the branch enjoyed to have music and it was nice to have a piano again and not a little keyboard as we had in muermos. 

Well, i had to say good bye to muermos which was hard, but it ended a good time in my mission. Hard, but i feel like i grew the most while i was in muermos, i feel like that changed me alot as a missionary and as  person, i recognize how the church works and how i need to be as a member and as a follower of Christ.

Well i hope all have a wonderful thanskgiving, it looks like here in chile they will be doing absolutley nothing as it doesnt exist but i hope that all have a wonderful time and eat a ton of turkey for me.

Love you all
Elder Nelson