Monday, August 25, 2014

Baptism on Friday! :)



Hermana Barreiros posted these five photos during the week.  They are of a New Missionary Training Conference for the newest missionaries and their companions.  Braxton can be seen in the first four photos.  He looks happy.  He is not able to send us photos right now with his camera, so we are grateful that Hermana Barreiros posted these. 

How come you were later emailing today? (Last week’s question?)

We started later and I started with emailing that I was on and working on Family Search during my time while working with email as well. I sent my Mission President an email about my week shortly after and our time varies.  Usually it will be around 2-4 for you or 4-6 for me.

I had 23 lessons and we only have 4 Baptismal Dates now. Our investigators need 3 weeks where they attend church before baptism. One of them only has 2 weeks before the date and hasn´t gone yet so the date died. Oh well, we have 4 more, but we are doing all we can to teach, strengthen, and prepare them for the date. There is a lot to do in a week and this past Sunday we had 80 people in our Branch and 2 recent converts who received the Aaronic Priesthood. Also, we have an 8 year old who is getting baptized Friday that we worked with the mother who is less active to get him baptized and work to reactivate the family and serve them.  

Things are going really nicely right now, but it is still difficult to say everything that I want to say but it is even harder to understand other people. There are so many challenges in the mission and I am doing everything that I can to serve and enable others to be ready to make covenants and keep them throughout their lives. 

I didn´t feel the earthquake, but I heard about it from everyone. My companion didn´t feel it either. We had just left a house and were walking and people were running in the streets and we were in the more dangerous part of our sector, but I never feel worried here in the field. There is so much to be grateful for and I am doing all that I can to prepare the people. We had another amazing week.  80 people in the church was our goal for the change. Now we are shooting for 90 or 100. We have so many more people that could go to church, but we are doing all that we can. 

Chile is in a state of apostasy. Elder Chuquel shared a scripture from Jacob 5 and the vineyard that describes Chile. The Branches outgrew the roots and now the tree faltered. We are repairing the tree now and grafting in better branches for the posterity and the fruits of the future for other missionaries.

I am doing all that I can and I am loving this work. I love Sundays because I see the fruits of my week and my labors while I rest. There is so much to be grateful for and the time goes by so quickly. It feels like yesterday I was writing home, but it has been a week... Things go so quickly and in 2 weeks it is exchanges again. My trainer Elder Chuquel will probably go.... He is in his 5th exchange here and that is usually the longest people stay. He started his mission here as did the other Elders here. Things will be fine. I have learned the area and who all of the people are. I just don´t know every little detail. There will be a lot of work for me in September. I will probably be directing the sector while learning the language.... A little difficult, but not impossible.

The package I sent you cleared customs in Chile this morning.  Hopefully you will receive it at your district meeting this week or next.  What day do you have district meetings? Are they every week or every other week?

District meetings are normally on Wednesdays. I am in the Zone Ochagavia. If you didn´t know, there are 10 zones and 6 are in the city and 4 are in the country. Ochagavia is in the city. I don´t think we receive pouch every week, but it is every other week for certain. We got pouch last week so it will probably be early September before I get it. Don´t worry I´m doing great!

I know you are doing great!  You are an awesome missionary and you can handle whatever comes your way.  However, I will always worry about you.  What kind of mom would I be if I didn’t worry?

I am sending the attachments separate.  I wonder if that big attachment last week was what kept your email reply from coming back on time.
Thanks for the pictures and for the support I am doing all that I can to send photos, but these computers are seriously the quality of 2000 at home.... I don´t know if the USB port is able to read my drive, but I am trying. Don´t worry I will figure it out, but words for me are important in the meantime. 

Are you using the same computer every week?  Has your companion or any of the other elders been able to send photos from their cameras?  There are different levels of USB.  I bet the cable you have is a newer USB cable than what the computer is able to read.  You might try buying a USB cable down there that matches the camera port and then has a USB 1.0 end.  I will try to mail you one and I will send you a USB device that you could pull the card out and put it in and then you plug that into the computer.  I wish you could just use the Wi-Fi, but I understand.  It is important to be obedient.

Don´t stress too much I don´t know if I will be able to use the computers for it and I have used different computers.

You asked about the tomatoes on my salad? I ate them before she took the picture. The food is good, but they like tomatoes here too much. I have eaten a lot of tomatoes here. That´s fine everything is nice, but I feel hungry often. I don´t mind tomatoes too much and we have lunch with members every day except for Preparation Day. Breakfast and Dinner are on our own. Many days I am hungry and I think that I am losing weight. I don´t have any way of validating it, but I am having to tighten my belt, so I´m fairly certain I am losing weight.

Thanks for everything. I am out of time. I will write you next week. Thanks for the support always and for always trying to write when I´m on and for the emails each week. It means a lot. Have a great week!

Well I don’t want you to go the whole mission without sending us any photos.  Sorry they love tomatoes.  Hopefully you will learn to love them, too.  I am sorry you are hungry all the time.  Buy food that is more filling.  If you need to spend money from your account, you can.  Losing is better than gaining.  Eat more of their delicious fried breads.

Thanks for writing.  Will you please try harder to tell me what you are doing.  I hope you wrote more to Clain and Dad this week.  Copy and paste the same email to everyone or just send it to everyone.   It is frustrating to wait for an hour and a half and get very little information.  I love you lots.  Be Goode!

Note from Mom.  We are getting a time delay on the delivery of emails.  Braxton actually wrote me a very nice email last week and another one this week, but I didn’t get either one till after he was done emailing. 


Monday, August 18, 2014

We had 26 lessons this week and placed 4 baptismal dates!!!

My answer is 8 for you. We live there and the house is fine. The bathroom is working now and things are great! We had 26 lessons this week and placed 4 baptismal dates!!! This week went much better for me and today we played soccer which was really fun. Things are great and we are doing really well. Currently this next week is helping our baptismal dates improve and learn more and make commitments to help them progress. There are so many great people. They just need to accept Christ.

I got asked to give a talk in Church this past Sunday, but I got asked on Saturday... It went really well. Elder Decker talked about Faith. Elder Fernandez talked about the Book of Mormon and how we need to remember so many things. I talked about Repentance, The Atonement, and Enduring to the End. I explained so many things and it was very powerful. We had an investigator that a recent convert brought to church before we ever taught her and we gave her a tour of the church. A lot of the things I testified of were for the people to remember the importance of their baptismal covenants and living worthy of them. It was really powerful. I taught many different parts of the Doctrine of Christ. It was so powerful and I mentioned baptism for those who haven´t been, being important for investigators.

When we had our lesson later that evening our new investigator was ready for this step in her life and accepted a baptismal date after we shared about the Restoration. She is amazing and she said that she has never felt like she felt in a church before and she loved it! I am really excited and so grateful for the countless miracles that we have had in this past week! Things have been so special for me this week and we had 3 days where we placed baptismal dates. 2 Friday, 1 Saturday and 1 Sunday. Things were great and Friday and Saturday we had 6 lessons a piece. Things have been so amazing and I am really enjoying things!

Dear Braxton
How are you doing? It sounds like you are having some problems with your bathroom. What is the problem with it? What is your place like? Do you have bugs, mice, rats? Do you have hot water or do you take cold showers? I think mom sent you some pictures off Google Earth. Which one is your place? It's really hard to tell with all the fences where the buildings change and the gates are. I talked to Brian Young yesterday at church he wanted to know how you were doing. I think he would love to hear from you. Make sure you tell me about your place, more details. I want to know what you’re dealing with. Thanks. Keep working hard. I Love You!   Love, Dad

Things are fine. I don´t have any problems and our bathroom is working. I have hot water and things are great. I told Mom about the house number and I am perfectly fine. Things are different, but not impossible and I know that I can deal with anything that comes my way. Thanks for the love and support. It means so much!

What do you mean by different?

Just that I have to live differently. We don´t have a dryer. We were told never to go bare foot. The shower is not like the ones Curtis had. Things are nice overall. Just a little bit different for me and everything in the house is tile. I don´t have a problem with things. We don´t have rats, mice, or bugs. I haven´t found anything wrong with it, solely that it is different for me.

We looked up your house number and it's really hard to tell we're you live. Are you on the north or south side of the street?

I think it is the North side of the street. When you see Sierra which is the street, I think is west of our house. If it is Sierra then we live on the North.

Have you looked at the pictures mom sent you?

Of the houses? Yes and it is house 8.

What was wrong with your bathroom?

It just wouldn´t drain and we fixed it. I spent several days working on it. We honestly have a hard time with it, but I spend a lot of time trying to make sure it works for everyone.

So it was plugged. How did you fix it?

We have a plunger and it is very flimsy but I have worked with clogged toilets enough so I just worked at it and eventually I was able to fix it and end the problem.

That’s great. I'm glad you were able to fix it. It will make life easier. Can you put toilet paper down the toilet?

No. That is another thing that is different and frustrating. We can in the Church and in The CCM, but the sewer system can´t handle it, so we can´t. The toilets here aren´t very great overall. They don´t have much power, so things are a little frustrating overall, but it isn´t too bad.


I want you to work on John David Goode.  Go to his person page.  At the top right is the Hints section.  There are four hints listed.  I have already checked and all four belong to him, so you can attach them and know that they are for the right family.  Go slow and work through the process.  It might help you to look at some of the articles I have put links to below.  You could read one each week.  Start with Record Hints and then try attaching some of the Record Hints as Sources.  If you have time, also read the second article, Attaching Historical Record to an Entire Family.  Then try attaching one.  Once you have done a few, this will be so easy for you.  Save this email in your Inbox for later so you can find it easily or make a new folder to keep Family History stuff in.



Family History Helps


Record Hints

Attaching Historical Record to an Entire Family

How to Search Historical Records from Family Tree and Attach the Source to a Record

Merging Duplicate Records in Family Tree

Cannot Merge Duplicate Records in Family Tree

Adding and Correcting Information About People and Relationships


There is a marriage record that is listed that has David Goode for John David Goode and the other thing is the marriage happened in different states. This is a little frustrating. I´m going to leave this one to you to fix. I´ll look at the others.


I checked that record and it is for John David Goode.  I want you to get experience attaching records.  He lived in different states.  He died in California.  I think he was born in Texas.  I will look to see if I can find some more records for you to work on for next week.  I will check them tonight.  I am sure you did fine.



I changed my mind about it. I decided to add it and you can review them later and see how it is or if it needs changed. Thanks I am almost out of time. I only got to John David Goode´s hints today. Thanks!


Monday, August 11, 2014

Like Lehi's Dream & Broken Toilet

Note from Mom.  This week's emails are in conversation form with the red being mom and the blue being Braxton.  Feel free to skip the red sections, but some of it makes more sense if you read the whole conversation.  He seems a bit discouraged this week, but I think all missionaries go through that stage when they want to change the whole world, but realize they can't because God gave us all our free agency to choose.  I think Braxton feels a lot like Lehi in his dream.  He is standing there holding out the fruit to all those he loves and cares about, but not all of them will come and partake of it even though it is so desirable.  Please pray for him and the Chilean people. 
I am doing really great I just sent mom a really long letter about everything here. One thing that has been hard this last week is that our bathroom is broken and we have to go to the Church to use the bathroom.... It´s hard to deal with, but we do it. The Branch President accidentally locked my companion and I in the Church on Sunday. We have to borrow the key from the Branch President many days right now. We are trying to figure out how to get it fixed, but it is just a trial for us, but we will be fine. I am doing well overall.
Things are different in many ways and I am so glad to live in the United States because there are so many things that are different and hard to deal with that are just normal for the people here. I never go bare foot in the apartment and other things. There are many other things. Overall I am working hard and doing my best to serve and be obedient and love the mission. Things are going really well and I love it here even though it is so different. I love the people and this is what keeps me going. I don´t particularly like some of the differences but they are bearable when I think of the people I am serving and inviting to come unto Christ.

Love you have a great week!

Hi Mom I am on right now and I was wondering if you have found anything in your time with Family Search this week. Let me know if there is anything that I can look into to help with things and if you figured anything out with that name.

Hi.  I sent you an email with Family History information.  Read it.

I have read all of your emails and I do not have anything about Family History here...

Hey Braxton,

How was your week?  Mine was good.  Tuesday night we went to the Logan temple with Nicole Parkinson for her endowment.  Then Friday we went up all day for her wedding, luncheon and reception.  We got to see Grandma and Grandpa Goode, Shara, Rob and the kids and lots of family at the reception and lunch.  It was a really nice day.  I went to a Technology Conference on Thursday that was okay.  Saturday and Sunday I had a sore throat, but it is better today.

Brandon Swenson has been called to the Australia, Melbourne mission.  He reports to the Provo MTC on December 17th.

Tyler Hayward has been called to the Illinois Chicago Mission.  He reports to the Provo Missionary Training Center on Wednesday, October 29th, 2014. 

Dallas Carter’s mission call was changed from Mexico to Texas McAllen Mission Spanish Speaking.  He reports to the Provo MTC on September 10th.  They needed to keep him in the US so he can get his supplies for his diabetes.

Colby left last week.  Makoa spoke yesterday and leaves next week.  I think BJ speaks next week.  Lots of them heading out soon. 

We go to see the Ogden Temple Open House on Wednesday afternoon this week.  It should be fun. 



That is crazy and Colby emailed me 3 days ago so that is great. That is awesome for Tyler. That is the mission that President and Hermana Doll at the Chile CCM served in before serving here. Also that change for Dallas will still be good for him. I hope that it all works out well and that people have success. That is really cool that so many of them are heading out so quickly and I´m glad that you have the opportunity to go to the Temple Open House. If it had been earlier I would have loved to have gone. I will have to visit it after the mission.

Sorry that I haven´t sent pictures lately. These computers have a hard time reading my jump drive so I can´t upload them and even though the Church has Wi-Fi there is a rule in the mission that I can´t send pictures through my camera. We aren´t supposed to have Wi-Fi on any of our things, so I am just going to use it as a camera here to be obedient and try to figure out the jump drive with time. We go to a cyber each week that is in our sector. The address for our apartment is Lo Espejo Colòn 163, Chile. Hopefully this helps you find where I am currently. Thanks for all that you do!

I just resent it.  I typed it in Word last week and then copied and pasted it into an email, but my computer was being flaky that night so maybe it didn’t send it.  I can’t see it in my Sent Items folder.  Sorry. 

I still don´t have it.... I really don´t know what to do about it right now....


I will send it as a reply to this email thread.  I sent it with a new subject earlier. 

You are right about Calvert Thomas Goode being married to Merla Ione Fewkes.  They are your great grandparents.  Merla got cancer and died on 4 December 1951. 

After Merla died, Calvert did not remain a widower.  He married four more times. 

First, he married Lois Juanita Fisher on 2 July 1952.  They were only married about two years and then they divorced.

Second, he married Dora Bee in 1954.  I have not been able to find her maiden name yet.  They divorced in 1956.   I have very little information on her so far.

Third, on 13 July 1957, he married Della Marie Middleton.  That marriage lasted till 3 September 1959 when she died, I believe from cancer. 

His last wife was Florence Matilda Anderson.  They were married on 17 December 1960 in the Los Angeles Temple.  I don’t believe the other three marriages were in the temple. Florence was a good grandmother to your dad, his brothers and siblings and to all of their cousins.  She was the only grandmother the kids remember.  She died on 7 February 1979.  I think she also died of cancer.  Calvert seemed to have bad luck that way. 

So the reason you are seeing the Temple Opportunity in your list is because I have been working to try to find all of Calvert’s wives and make sure their work is done.  The sealing for Della can be done because she was born in 1902 and it has been more than 110 years since she was born.  The temple work for Lois Juanita Fisher cannot be done yet.  It has only been 108 years since she was born, so to do it now we would have to have permission from her closest living relative.  I don’t know if she had other husbands or any children.  I am still researching her.  Just ignore them in your list for now.  In November 2016 we will be able to do Lois’s work.  Maybe by then I will have found more information on Lois and Dora Bee. 


Family Search has a new tool I want you to use.  It is called the Descendancy View.  This article by Family Search explains a lot about the new Descendancy View, Record Hints and Attach a Source.  That is what I want you to start working with.   

I think that John David Goode would be a great place for you to start.  Because Calvert Thomas Goode was the first member of the church that we know of on the Goode line, this line should be the most productive in finding people who need to have temple work done.  But we need to do the research first. 

Login to Family Search.  Click on your Watch list.  I have put John David Goode there.  You can also click on the drop down by Person and he should be near the top of the list.  Or you could do steps 1 and 2 from the article above.

Just under John David Goode’s name, click on View Tree.  This should open the Descendancy View page.  Here you can see him with his wives and children.  Click on the right facing arrows to expand and see more descendants.  It won’t show you all the living people, just the ones attached to you and I did add a few on one line.  Right now one of the daughters of the second wife named Kathryn Jane Goode is not showing up, but maybe it will refresh and show her by the time you read this.

John David Goode and Georgia Ann McCoy had four children and then she died when Calvert Thomas was four years old.  One of the daughters, Jenie died in 1902, about three years before Georgia Ann McCoy died.  John David Goode then married Kathryn Maud Eagon and they had two daughters.  

To the far right you will see icons.  There are four types.  The article above talks about Record Hints.  They are the orange icons.  They will help you find sources to verify the dates and places in people’s lives.  Click on an orange icon and follow the instructions in the article on how to add sources.

Blue icons give you Research Suggestions.  These are things like there is a gap of more than 4 years between children, and no sources attached.  These guide you to look for additional records.   

Red icons give you Data Problems.  These are more like red flags that something is definitely wrong that needs to be fixed.  These are things like the child was born before the mother or the marriage date is too early or too late.  They help you fix things that are definitely wrong with the data.  

Green icons tell you that there may be temple work that can be done for the person.  You need to make sure you check for Duplicates before you reserve the temple ordinances.

We probably won’t find much temple work to do starting with John David Goode, but we need to verify all the dates and stuff associated with his family before we move to the next generation.  Working on his family will help you learn how to work with Hints and Sources so it will be easier when you get to the next generation back. 

I am preparing a package to send to you and I will try to include some family history stuff that will help you with these families.  That way you can have a hard copy to look at while you work.  I have histories of some of these people and a few photos.  I will try to get it in the mail soon so you will have it by the end of August.

Another way to work with Hints is from the person page.  In the top right corner, the hints for each person will be listed.  Sometimes it is easier to work from there if the person has a lot of hints rather than going back over and over to the Descendancy page.  It also helps to open multiple tabs.

I have more information on these families in  I will tell you more about that in the next few weeks.  

I love you lots,

Love always and forever,


Do you need a card reader for your camera?  Would that make it easier to send the photos?  Can’t you just attach the USB cable to the camera.  There is a port for that.  I used it before you left, so I know it works.  The card is a mini card, that has to go in an adapter to make it the size of a regular SD card.  There were two of those adapters in there.  If you need me to, I can look for a USB adapter that will let you pull the mini-SD card out and put in the adapter and then plug the USB into the computer.  What do you need to make it work?  Do you need a different jump drive to save the photos to from the camera?

 We will have to go to the Ogden Temple when you get home.  It is really pretty.

 Did you get the Family History email yet?

The problem is more with the computers they don´t really have usb ports in the front of the computer and I tried it in the back last week and it wouldn´t read it. I know how to do it but it won´t work. This week I forgot to grab them so I can´t send anything this week anyway. 

Okay.  The ports may be disabled.  Is your companion able to send any of his photos?  Ask the other missionaries if they know how to make it work. 

I am putting a package together for you.  I will try to mail it tomorrow or Wednesday.  It has taken longer than I thought it would because I have typed up some Family History stuff for you.  Is there anything you want or need? 

Please tell me about your week.

Things went well but I´m trying to do Family History right now. It has been crazy overall. There were frustrations but good things too. This week I had 19 lessons and we have one Baptismal date that we placed last week on Saturday for a young girl in the area whose mother is less active. She is almost 9 so it will count as a baptism for us, but we are teaching her currently. We have another Family that we taught and there are 4 people, but we scheduled another appointment and they weren´t home which was frustrating. In the previous appointment we asked them to read the Book of Mormon as a family and pray about it and committed them all to baptism. We extended a date, but they didn´t accept a specific date because they wanted to be sure of it. We haven´t gotten back to them, but I am praying that they did what we invited them to do and are working toward baptism. I am doing all that I can to help the people here and trying to do everything possible to help them out in all that I can. It´s hard to feel successful when everything looks like it isn´t being that way. I am trying to stay positive and work as hard as I can. I know that things will be just fine.

You should keep me updated on how things are going with helping Becca with her Family History work as well. I really like to know about how things are going at home as well.... It feels like I get very little details about things at home too. I try to do all that I can, but it is hard to read everything and get back to everyone. This will be the same time and day that I email here for a while. I don´t know that it will change.

I have been writing less because you asked me to.  I will try to send you some paper letters with more details, but they will take longer to get there, about a month from what I hear.  Have you received any letters from home yet?

I would love to tell you more about what is going on at home, but then it takes you more time to read it and you have less time to write back and tell us what you are doing.  It is hard to find a happy balance.  Try sending everyone the same letter and include more details in it.  I know it is not as personalized that way, but you can try to answer a few of the questions in the one email that you send to everyone. 

I will pray for your family of 4 to be receptive and fulfill their commitments.

I don´t know what will happen with them, but I did get 3 letters that you sent at the first part of July. I got the Temple names and one other I believe July 2nd for 2 and July 7th for the other. It is about a month to get here. I´m trying to find the balance in things, but I write very quickly and I am using time when I don´t have letters to do Family Search. I am done with everyone’s letters already today. I was really quick this week. There have been times when I am writing you and Becca when I am rushed, but this week I don´t think she will be on so I have time. I have around 30 more minutes.

Then please write more about what you are doing each day and about your apartment, your area, your branch.  Tell us some interesting stories.  Tell us about the lessons you are teaching.

I don´t have a whole lot to tell honestly. We found 12 new investigators this week, but we don´t really have any investigators who are progressing very well. I am also having a hard time working with the new views in Family Search. It is really hard to understand what is actually correct and what isn´t from here. I don´t know how much help I can be or if I need to look elsewhere. I don´t know much of what I need to do at this moment with Family Search and I understand the new views, but what is correct and what isn´t that´s the hardest thing for me at this time to figure out. I am doing all that I can to help with this, but I don´t know what is the correct options on this. Things are hard to discern on this for me.

The work has been good, but there are so many challenges and I feel like things go by so quickly and that so many people have perceptions of Mormons and that makes it hard to have lessons. Others who are inactive are hard to help because we keep teaching them and they just don´t want to change. We have a couple of less actives who are brothers and I think that they both served missions, but they just don´t want to go through the work to be active and participate in the Church. They both know that it is true and important, but they just won´t bring their families to Church. This is so frustrating. I do all that I can to help but people just don´t want to change their ways of life...

We had 80 contacts this week.... We walked so much and had 19 lessons.... We didn´t get to our goals in many things, but we had a goal for 8 new investigators and had 12 so I am happy with that. I really want to have more people accepting Baptismal dates and working toward them. This is really hard because people are so resistant to change in their lives and that bothers me because I know how good this would be for their life. They just need to try it. Lately I think of it as an apple that the people just need to take a bite to see if it is good before judging it and rejecting it. That is what frustrates me more than anything is that they won´t even try it out.... There are a lot of people who can´t do different things. Several people can´t read and that discourages them. There are others who speak several languages. One of our families we found this week is from Haiti. They speak French, Spanish and understand English. Not all of them can read in the Book of Mormon in Spanish.... I really want to try to get a couple Book of Mormons in French for them but I don´t know if that is possible.

There are so many things that are hard to deal with here. We saw one family of 5 people that Elder Chuquel baptised that didn´t go to Church this week, walking back to their home Sunday after shopping.... This was really hard for us.... He was really frustrated with this... I don´t like that in this city they have a ferria or a market in one of the streets. They happen on different days, but one of them is Sunday.... This is so annoying because many people aren´t keeping the Sabbath Day holy because of this.... They don´t have one on Saturday and I wish they would just do it then.... So many frustrations for me here and this area is one of the highest baptizing areas in the mission. Elder Chuquel is the missionary with the most baptisms for the least amount of time in the mission. He is nearing 8 months in the mission and has 10 baptisms. One thing I know to be true is that I am not going to have a ton of baptisms in my mission but that this group of missionaries here at this time is preparing Chile for those to come to have more success here.

Chile has been promised to be a Lighthouse to the World of church membership. It´s crazy that Chile has over 500,000 members but so few are active. We figured that about 7.3% of the members come 1 time or more in 3 months to be considered active. That´s so little. This is so hard to deal with. So many inactives and less actives. I know that my mission won´t be easy but I will have success with time and I am doing all that I can to prepare Chile for those blessing that they have been promised. I know that others will have so much more success. There are just so many people that aren´t keeping all of the commandments and living up to their potential. I hope that this gives you some insight into what I am dealing with here, but it isn´t much of a problem just a trial right now. Many days we return home frustrated with only 1-4 lessons when we had planned on around 6-8 dependent on the day.

Things aren´t easy and Chilenos are work-aholics.... They work so much and it isn´t easy to get them all to church.... Retention of members is a huge goal as well the new members are in retention for 1 year and we do a lot for them. The people just change who is at church. The first week the people who attended changed from 65 to 66 attending but 30 people were different from one week to another.... This is a major problem for the members and the branches and wards. I´m trying hard and I can only do so much for the people they have to have a change of heart and accept Jesus Christ in their lives. He waits at the Door and knocks awaiting us to let him in so that he can bless us and aid us in all of our needs. The people just need to realize this and see how important this is.

It sounds like most other missions in the church.  So many people who don’t make the gospel a priority in their life.  You have always had it in your life, so you understand how important it is, but you had friends who don’t go all the time and don’t seem to care as much.  Satan has great power over the people and he knows what will take them away from the gospel.  Keep trying.  I love you so very much. 

Thanks! I do all that I can, but it´s just so difficult seeing people that don´t have it and wanting them to have it as well. So many hard times and difficulties that could be lightened by taking a different path and letting Christ lift many of their difficulties. I know things will work out, but I just wish things could be more progressive and seem to have a greater impact. It´s hard to feel successful when everything seems to be regressing....

All you can do is your best and Heavenly Father will know that you have done all you can.  Be positive.  Smile at the people.  Be friendly and happy.  Let them see the light that is inside of you. 

How is the language coming for you?  Can you understand and speak what you need to?

I have a harder time understanding the people but I can speak usually and muddle through it when I don´t know all the words. I usually can improvise but understanding everything and using the words properly is a little difficult. I can´t pray in English anymore.... I´ve tried.... I start in English and I end up in Spanish a few words in. It´s different but I don´t mind all that much. I am working hard and trying to love this work. Thanks for all that you do.

I love you have an awesome week.  I am leaving WPEL and going home to have Cub Scouts.  I love you so much and I am so very proud of you.  I don’t know if you have more time or not, but I may not be able to write again before you are off.  I will try to send you some more helpful information on the Family Search stuff. 

Love always and forever,


Thanks so much and I haven´t had much success on Family Search in the last 2 weeks. I am doing all that I can, but it isn´t simple and I am really cautious because I know that it has eternal importance for these people and I don´t want to make mistakes that hinder these people´s progress. Thanks and work hard and enjoy your week. Thank you for raising me the way that you did! It means so much to me. Thank you and I will talk to you in a week! Love you and have great success!















Monday, August 4, 2014

Things Are Crazy

I don't need you to send me scriptures. I have a Spanish Book of Mormon with tabs and I can make do with just a Spanish Bible that I have currently. Sending them here by the time I get done they will be in poor condition. If you want to order them you can, but I would prefer to have a nice copy that isn't tarnished or ruined out here. There is a lot of dirt, sand and other things that make it hard to keep things as clean as I would like. I am doing great. My new companion is Elder Chuquel. He is from Brazil. He lives in the southern part of Brazil and I don't know the name of the city. He has been out for approximately 7 months now. He goes home with the Hermanas from my group. I have pictures but I haven't been able to send them from my camera because there really isn't free Wi-Fi around where I live and the Chapel doesn't have Wi-Fi.
The name of the area I am serving in is Lo Espejo. It is Lo Espejo 2. There are 4 Elders in my house. Elder Decker who was in the MTC with me, Elder Chuqel, and Elder Fernandez. Elder Chuquel has the most time in the mission and has been here for 5 changes after this one. Things are crazy, but great. We have one Baptismal date for a girl whose mother is less active but she is 8 currently and will be 9 when the baptism date is. We had a confirmation for a guy that Elder Chuquel baptized last Sunday. The other Elders had a wedding and a baptism this week and will have a confirmation next Sunday. Things are great and crazy. I have been walking a lot and I never feel like I have enough to eat but that is normal. Things are going really well and I am really happy serving. We taught 27 lessons since Tuesday. Things are good though just really busy and the time has gone so fast.
I am doing all that I can. I have apples and I carry one with me in case I get hungry. I have water every day and flavoring. I haven't used the new water bottles because the water is perfectly fine and clean. I don't worry about those things.
I really don't need much Mom. One of my worries is coming home with too much stuff and I don't need all that much... It is really simple and I haven't had a need for anything yet. I could have bought a Spanish Bible here with tabs at the Distribution Center but I didn't want to. It was 12.7 Mil which is approximately $25 dollars so I decided not to. I have found 2 scripture cases one for my less fancy Bible case and a leather one for my Book of Mormon. Things are fine and don't stress too much over sending things. It is really expensive to send thing here. Also it is a lot of extra cost and things to have to buy and send. I am just fine. I can barely get all of my stuff in my suitcases. I am probably going to start leaving hangers in each area that I serve in so that when I come home I don't have any of them.... I just don't know if I will have the space or what will be in good condition to come home. I am fairly certain that after 2 years most all of my clothing and shoes are going to be worn out. I don't know for certain though and I really don't want to have a hard time bringing things home...
I don't know what to expect or how it will work but I am expecting to be here for at least 3-5 changes... I don't know specifically and I don't know if they are going to change Elder Chuquel after 6 weeks because they normally have trainers in one place for 2 changes with their greenie... He has been here for 4 before getting me so that will be 6 changes if he trains me all the way through. Elder Decker's trainer has 2 changes in the mission which is crazy so 3 total changes including the CCM. He is great and he has lived in Utah as well as Argentina I think. I can't remember for certain... Things are good and simple. I am loving the work and we do a lot and we have a book called La Rescate.... It has all the addresses of people and if they are less active, and lots of information, so we use this a lot to find people and we have done contacting when our appointments fall through or people can't meet with us. There are gates everywhere so we can't knock doors we yell at doors and if people hear us they come out and talk but sometimes we get ignored and lights turned off but it is normal.
 So many questions.... I don't think I can answer them all... My area specifically for my Stake is Ochagavia. My District leader is Elder Keddington. There is a store called Ekono in our area but today we went to a mall that has more stuff and bought other things. We went shopping on Friday last week to get food because we didn't have time on Tuesday after getting to the area. There are 4 missionaries in the area, Elder Decker from my CCM group who was the other District Leader for my CCM zone. We have a Branch here in Lo Espejo. 65 people attended church on Sunday.
We live on a street called Colon but I don't know the house number. Send packages to the mission home through USPS and label them Missionary Supplies for no problems and pictures of Christ don't hurt. Things are crazy! They give us 1 and a half hours on the computer 1 hour and 15 for email, but we have to send our weekly letter to the president as well. 15 minutes is for Family Search so I will be doing a little work on that, but probably not making much progress in that little time. Things are new and crazy, but I am learning a lot.
Elder Chuquel and I get along great I don't know a lot about his family specifically because it is hard to talk to him at times. How you described where he lives is correct and this is him on Facebook according to how you said. That sounds exactly correct. I didn't do what you wanted with the questions and I don't have a clue as to how many I haven't answered, but I'm trying and you ask too much.
All mail goes to the mission home and I will get it when we have District meeting each week and Zone meetings. 5 of the 8 elders got sent to the zone Ochagavia. Elders Mertz, Johnson, Ballard, Decker, and I are all in this zone. I don't know about any of the others but I am loving the work and I can't believe that time goes so quickly.
Mom there was one opportunity listed in my Family Tree and Temple work section the name is Lois Juanita Fisher and it says that she is married to Calvert Thomas Goode.... I´m really confused... Shouldn't it be Merla Ione Fewkes.... I don't understand what I need to do here.... I don't want to mess things up and I like working with help because then there are other people to double check my work. Can you look into this? I don't want to be a pest, but I want the work to be done properly and I know that you're amazing with these things. It seems really confusing for me.
Also with the names in my account can you go in and move them to yours or do whatever you need to do so that you can get the sealings done for them? I don't want to be holding names all throughout my mission. I am going to email you about Family Search while I do it. I will probably do Family Search at the beginning of my time from now on and email you about things so that you can make progress and we can work together on it.
I'm a little rusty on Family Search but I will do my best. Thanks for everything sorry it doesn't seem like enough but I will get back to you more next week sorry and I'm trying to do all that I can with email. My hands are typing constantly in this time so give me a little bit of a break. I love you and I am working hard. Things are great overall!
Sorry if my English is getting worse. Sadly after learning things in Spanish my English has gotten worse so that I can use Spanish. So if the spellings seem weird, I'm sorry and I'll work on it. Thanks so much for all that you do and I really want to help you find names in the 15 minutes that I have each week I love you and have an amazing week. 15 minutes feels so short for me when I am looking for names and trying to serve ancestors with my time too. There is so much work to do and let me know if you come up with stuff for me to do and look into. I hope that I can help you find and fix things. Sorry I'm really rusty on Family Search it has been around a year and I want to get back into it. Becca has been working on her family too. If you want you can try to help her with it I know that she would appreciate it. Bring it up! She has a really complex family situation and any help you can give will work wonders for her history! Thanks Mom love you so much!