Monday, November 25, 2013

Happy Turkey Day

Hello from Arica Chile,

I'm doing alright. Hangin in there. The days get hotter and hotter here in Chile. I would imagine it's like 150 degrees or something but I could be wrong. They use Celsius degrees so who knows... Chile... I get made fun of about 5 times a day of how little I eat... It's not my problem I have a small stomach... Chileans. The strike for the trash just ended.... Literally 3 weeks of Chilean trash in the streets was not a very fun site to see... Chile... When people don't get what they want they go on strikes...

I explained what a ¨Feria¨ is a while ago, but I feel like It deserves another explanation, A Feria is like a GIANT garage sale but it goes down the streets and people bring tents and line them up for about 2 miles down the street and sell the most random stuff ever. You can find whatever you need in a Feria. That is how 50% of Chileans make a living. They buy giant portions of stuff from the United States at a really cheap price and then sell them... Anyway the other day we walked by the Feria and I saw jerseys, all kinds, baseball, basketball, football. and there were about 50 HIGH QUALITY jerseys that would sell for about 75-100 bucks in the States and they were selling them for 3 Mil, about 6 dollars..... That's Chile for ya... So obvi I bought a Dallas Cowboys, Marion Barber Jersey worth about 100 bucks for only 6 dollars.... Pure Gold... I was happy. But it's gigantic but I don't care. It's still cool...

We met this really nice drug dealer the other day. He wants to listen to us... He sells Cocaine.... haha funny guy. All the little kids here call the Missionaries Tio, as of right now you all can call me Tio Paxman or Tio Pacman cause none of the Chileans can pronounce my name correct. Tio means Uncle by the way... Spanish....

Yesterday we were touching doors and we were able to enter and found a family of new investigators. It's very difficult to find- teach a whole family so we were super happy. The mom was very very receptive and the kids as well. I love families who will do anything to help the missionaries. Dirt poor families who give us a drink of juice even though it's the last pack of juice in the house... I love the mission and the people here. 
Pretty slow week with our investigators. Our 3 Fechas are having a little problem with their divorce from her previous marraige and might have to go to trial which will delay the baptism for about 6 months... Very sad news but I had a feeling of peace after going to the Lord about the situation. All will work out with them :)

Other than that nothing much happening. Chileans don't celebrate Thanksgiving so it will be a normal Thursday here in Chile for me. I´ll be thinking of you all this week, especially my Aunt Cherie. We find out our Cambios this Saturday.... I got to see my best friend, Elder Sargent the other day. He's a stud... I'm lucky to have him here with me. 

Love you all, Have a very Happy Thanksgiving :) I have a front row seat to the greatest miracle of all, the affect of Christ's atonement on individuals and their families. Nothing like the mission. Love you.

Elder Paxman

Monday, November 18, 2013

Convert Blesses The Sacrament

Hi Family,

Short email today sorry, a little stressed, but hey that's the mission.. This past week was pretty calm, doing the daily routine, trying to find people to teach and stuff. The mission routine is a rough one but its okay. It will all pay off in the end. Our convert from last week, Andres, was able to bless the Sacrament this Sunday. We practiced so much before and he was super super excited and nervous for his first time blessing the Sacrament. I can't really explain the feeling watching your convert bless the sacrament haha. It's like a dad's love for his son... I think... I don't have any sons that I know of, so I wouldn't be too sure, but I would imagine it's the same haha. Andres also went on intercambios and me and him worked together while my comp went with someone else. He´s already doing missionary work. He´ll be a Missionary in no time. What a stud he is. It makes me smile :)

Other than that, normal week of working hard. It is HOT HOT HOT here in Arica, Chile right now. Days are loooong walking in the heat. Everyday we come home and I just die in my bed from exhaustion. But it's a good thing don't worry. It means I'm working hard.
Our Fecha is going to have to run to another date in the future with our family of 3. There is some paper work we are going to have to help with dealing with divorce and marriage and stuff but it will all work out, no worries. 

To shower in the mornings I boil hot water in a little stove thing and put it in a water bottle and dump the water from the bottle on me.... Oh the struggle. Our pension only has cold water... The mission right ;) haha all is good though. I'm doing alright... Trying super super hard to have as much patience as possible with some things here... but the Lord is helping me.... 
We had a little tiny conference with our President of the Mission yesterday and I felt like it was exactly meant for me some of the words he said. The Lord knows what you need and he will make a way for you to get what you need... If that made sense... 
Love you all. So proud of all of you. Thanks for the love and support and I love my best friends Tyler, Trevor, Tanner, and Joey. They are studs. I saw Joey yesterday. I want to cry every time I see him.. My family and friends make me so happy... Okay ya I'm done now haha sorry. Love you. Chau.

Elder Paxman

Monday, November 11, 2013

Surprise Baptism!!!!

Hello people.

I added a few more people to this e-mail than usual because of an awesome experience I had this past week. Last week I told you a little about Andres. Andres just turned 18 years old and he has been taking the lessons from the missionaries since he was 13 but his mom is Catholic and wouldn't let him get baptized in the Church. With our recent boundary changes in our ward, Andres belonged to the other ward but now is in ours. There was a little miscommunication with the other missionaries about him. So we had no clue about Andres and him talking with the missionaries. About 2 weeks ago we were waiting out front of the church and Andres walked up to us and told us he was an investigator in our church (at this time we had no clue who he was). So obviously we were a little confused but he wanted us to come over and talk to him. We set a date to go over to his house on Friday. Well Thursday night he gave us a call and told us he wanted to be baptized.... He came to church the next Sunday and we set a date for him to get baptized on the 16th.

He had an interview with the Bishop this past Wednesday and asked the Bishop if he could get baptized this past Saturday because he didn't want to delay the day of his repentance... How awesome is that. He is SUCH  a stud and a blessing for us to be able to run into him. So we basically had a surprise baptism that we needed to get ready in 3 days.

All went well during the baptism minus the font overflowing while we went to lunch.... oops. We were in a panic to sweep all the water out the back door of the church but all went well. Simple and spiritual with a few of the members there.

Andres asked me to give him the Holy Ghost Sunday morning in church.... What an AMAZING experience that was. I really wish I could explain in words how it felt to give someone the Holy Ghost. It's one thing to be able to baptize someone but giving Andres the Holy Ghost was by far the greatest feeling I have had on my mission. I fasted the day before to be able to say all the correct things for my first time doing this ordinance (in Spanish I might add haha). But ya, I just wanted to let all of you know how much the Lord blessed us with Andres and also for me with the opportunidad to give Andres the Holy Ghost in Sacrament Meeting.

Our family who have fechas (on date for baptism) were struggling this past week. The daughter and the mom know they want to get baptized. The dad has a little more doubts. So on Saturday we had a cita with them and the Spirit was so strong, my comp crying, the family crying. We asked them ONE last time to pray as a family that night when we left to see if they should really get baptized the 30th of November and if the church was true. The next day they weren't able to come to church but they gave us a call in the middle of church. The dad called us and was super super happy and said ¨Elders, I got my answer.. I'm getting baptized on the 30th!!!!¨..... How amazing is that.... hahah I love it. We had a really good week. and I can tell the Lord is really blessing us.... 

The garbageman here in Chile are still on strike.... you can imagine the smell of 3 weeks of trash piled up in the street.... It's horrible.... Welcome to Chile hahaha. Nah but I'm loving life. We're getting blessed. I'm being obedient and my patience is getting better... I think. I miss you all so much but don't worry about me. I'm happy. These past 7 and a half months have flown by. I'm excited to see what's ahead of me. There is nothing like the mission.

Elder Paxman