Monday, August 19, 2013

Chad's first area - Chillan

Dear Family,
I have been assigned to be trained by Elder Catron. He is great and has a genuine excitement for the work.  I will be working in Chillan.  The town is not much for looks, but I did not come on a mission for scenery.  The town is tiny, but the people are overall pretty cool.  The bishop has been a member for only 4 years, but he is gung ho about missionary work, and we got a reference from him.  We had 3 people go with us to church last week, all with baptismal dates.  I know that God answers prayers.  The people are receptive, and that is what I hoped for.  

I like this quote from President Monson, Ensign November 1986, "Courage.  Let us have the courage to defy the consensus, the courage to stand for principle.  Courage not compromise brings the smile of God's approval.  Courage becomes a living and an attractive virtue when it is regarded not only as a willingness to die manfully, but as the determination to live decently.  A moral coward is one who is afraid to do what he thinks is right because others will disapprove or laugh.  Remember that all men have their fears, but those who face their fears with dignity have courage as well."

I may not email for a while.  The email here is you go into town, and pay a few thousand pesos for internet service.  They have a bunch of computers, and you just sit down and log in.  My trainer is from Buenos Aires Argentina.  He looks very American, and it frustrates him when Chileans talk to him in English because they think he is from the USA or something.  He can speak English relatively well, but has a strong German accent.  He must have learned English from German-Argentines.  He says he is of Spanish, Italian, German, and Lamanite descent. 

This is a walking area, but bikes would be nice.  We walk many miles each day, and I am on my last belt notch.  If you can get a package sent, put in some bug bombs, to kill all fleas.  The house we are staying at doesn’t have any, but I’ve learned that some of the other missionary lodgings are flea central.  If I go to a flea place in my next area, I´d like to be ready.  The house we are staying in has heated water, and is good.  

My favorite finding technique is what I call fast tracting.  You knock, talk, and if they don’t want to listen, you don’t waste a second there, you just run to the next house.  That is how we found a family of 4 children and a mom.  She cried in the first lesson, and one of her kids is 8 or 9 years old.  I think they will come into the fold.  I am safe and happy.  I know that this is the Lord´s work.  I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet, called by the God, and that Christ Lives.  I know that this work can not be stopped.  I know that Thomas S. Monson is the Prophet and President of this church, the true church.

I love you more than all the yapping dogs in Chillan,
Elder Withers 

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