Monday, February 23, 2015

Quest for my Eternal Friends

First... After reading all those great emails of yours, Quiero Que Sepan (I want yal to know) as the family Mangum counciled their son, I am in no rush to come home... I know the time will come, but I have never been so calm in my life about the thought of what will happen in these next few weeks, I am worried for only a few reasons, 1.These people in Arica, Chile need what I have, and 2. I have no more toothpaste so I need to buy some more at the store today.... That's all. My only 2 worries in my life right now :)  I know I won´t be saying that a few weeks from now. But for now, I´m still Elder Paxman, and Im still happy to say that :) It's a calming that I have that overtakes my body, Obviously its the Spirit that is fighting stronger than the adversary to keep me focused. Even if the adversary sometimes uses your weekly emails to get into my mind ;) God always wins when I let him. I know God won today... 

With that being said, the work goes on, It's marching... This past week will be remembered forever for being the hardest week to enter houses... Lots of time in the street under the sun, Praying under my breath for someone... Just anyone... I get emotional thinking about it, I teared up a bit during church sitting next to my companion and not next to any investigators... One of the worst feelings for sure that obviously happens to everyone in their mission, but with only a few more chances to bring souls to the gospel... It hurts. The work is not easy, But I can also say after this week, that I gave it my all. Which gives a reassurance to my heart, that it was meant to be and a lesson was learned that was more important... I hope... 

This ward needs more interaction with the work. They need our help, Is revelation my companion and I realized while doing our companionship study yesterday... They need our help. We have been focused on that aspect, just now, in other forms. The Week ended on a good note with finding a great New Investigator, Paula. I have Faith in her. The Next lesson will have her Hermanador to help her through the process. Its whats needed. I Get it. 

Crossing the roads and walking in Zig Zags to walk under a post for a milisecond of shade... Or finding a tree to walk under.. Its killer. But I Love it. 

I bought Oakley and Ray Ban glasses today for 7 dollars each. Super Fake, Thank you Perú, They are dope. We ate Roly´s today, famous restaurant here in Arica, I ate 3/4 of the sandwhich. My companion is awesome, keeping me working hard and focused. Still on my quest for my eternal friends. Love you family and friends. I found the Rav 4 here in Arica!

Elder Paxman

Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Las Acacias Got Talent

First of all.... HACE CUALQUIER CALOR ACÁ. It's so dang hot, The Valle (Valley) Lluta and Azapa that surround the City of Arica have been receiving a lot of rain apparently which brings in an immense Humidity to the City, I thought the Dry heat of Copiapó was hot last year, I couldn`t tell you what one is hotter, but I love it hahah it brings a fun edge to leaving the apartment at 4 in the afternoon ready for a hard day of work. Not too many are in the streets due to the hottness but for the ones that are... Fresh meat... We have been talking and talking and talking to everyone... I usually start off saying to the people in the street Hace frío o no? (Its pretty cold huh?) I get a chuckle then we start talkin bout Arica, The Good Ol USA, Sports, Lo que sea and then we are best friends and they invite us back another day... Some of them are even so nice to give us a cup of water, most of the time its water from the Tap, But I accept it with love and chug it down. I love Ariceños, Good people. I`ve been applying a tactic, that my good Friend taught me on an Intercambio one time, Looking for WHATEVER to talk about with the people, whether it be a painting of 2 old people on the wall;) or hearing Spanish music and knocking their door explaining I'm a gringo and I love Latin music, just ways to get the conversation going... We are seeing really good success with this. The Number of lessons we are teaching weekly is going up and up and up. the amount of people progressing is going up and up and up, the amount of Baptismal Fechas we have is now at 5, a family of 4, The familia Barraza Jaime all accepted to be baptized on the 18th of April, Marraige is still needed for that reason, its a little far away but still. Goals, Metas, They are critical. My Companion was so happy after that Cita we had with them... Those are the moments why I love being a missionary so much.. A hard day of work and being able to have such a spiritual lesson on the Gospel Of Jesus Christ Lesson 3, and having it click in their minds, having the spirit talk to them, realizing they need this to be saved... That's why I love being a missionary, no better feeling. Other than being in that Font.

It truly is a miracle seeing how fast we can gain the confidence of a person or ward with the calling we have, I know that's part of me being set apart as a missionary, that ability. No sé si me explico.. 

This was a true quote I heard more than 5 times this week. ´Lets tell everyone that it starts at 7:30, so we can actually start at 8:30´.... I still cant understand that..... Like I said last week we have a goal of doing an activity once per week, in charge of the Missionary work, This week we had a talent show... It was supposed to start at 7:30 but we ended up starting at about 9:00.. But that's something I don't wanna talk about... Anyways in the end the Talent show turned out really good, people actually showed up, people enjoyed themselves, people left content. Us 4 missionaries did a sketch, of what people think we do as missionaries and what really happens... Its was really funny, I will have to show you the video someday, even though its in Spanish, it's still funny. The members and Investigators loved it. We had some other great talents from some Investigators and members as well, about 50 or so people showed up... Activities are what keep the Ward active. They are needed. It was a success this week. I have a future in Acting. hahah. 

One thing that I don't think many people from the US or Utah will ever understand is the sacrifice and true faith some of these members have in order to visit the temple.... Its something Unexplainable but Seeing the plans needed and the resources as well really is amazing to see what these members go through... I have so much Respect and love for these faithful members who give basically everything to make the trip just to go to the temple, I always heard these stories but never thought they were real... They are real... I love faithful members. It kills me to say I have a temple 5 minutes from my house knowing before the mission I didn't take advantage of that luxury... truly amazing these people. Our ward is planning on making the trip in April to Cochabamba Bolivia. 

I don't want to go into big details about this last thing but, lets just say, being exactly obedient doesn't always mean being best friends with everyone. Bad habits some members have had with previous missionaries are very hard to break without being put on the bad list, or the lame Elder list, or the Cuatico missionary list, as they say here. But I'm here to be obedient and I try to explain in a loving manner why, and I can say I am not the most loved missionary for that... But I'm happy cause my son understands the importance of Obedience and receiving the blessings from heaven. That's all. 

I remember When I started the mission the old old missionaries on the verge of going home, would always tell me `When you have our time Elder Paxman, you'll understand why we do what we do` I cant explain to you how happy and blessed I am to not be saying those words to the new younger missionaries, That's not what the gospel is about. I'm so blessed to have understood, I thank my Mission President, previous companions, previous Zone Leaders, and the Lord for this sensation of knowing who I need to be. I'm a happy Missionary, Giving every last drop in the heat of the Arica sun. I know who I am.

Elder Mason C. Paxman

Elder Ngatai from Utah and I bought matching Colo Colo Jersies from Peru, Blessings that members can go and we are so close, the jersies cost 5 mil, about 8 Dollars.

Being able to see My Convert Andres Vera today was a highlight I will never forget, Surprising him at his door step, He is leaving on his mission the Day I finish my Mission, Such a great bond we have together. Here's a pic with him, we both are still as skinny as we were a year and a half ago.

These are about half the Ties we have in Giant Bags in the back of our pension, Literally thousands of Ties.... Insane, Missionaries are always coming over to check them out.

Monday, February 9, 2015

Queridos Familia y Amigos,

What a week, I can honestly truly say, I have never been so tired... We are working so hard, I have all the desire in my soul to leave this sector healthy, (as we say here in the MCA) Progressing families, members animated to help us, a good stock of Future Investigators, Fechas Bautimales, ETC.... That is the desire of my heart right now... I just want to give it all to this sector. Leave it all on the court, Leave it all in Arica. I am on the right path for that...

At the Start of the week, as we were having a rough day getting into houses, we were walking in the dusty streets of the North of Chile, my mind started wandering to my sector in Iquique, the one I just left, Thinking of all the Progressing families we had, Future Baptisms, The Success We were having, And then I got a slap in the Face and basically told myself... No Ya Pasò (Its over with) This is where you are needed. After the few seconds of Reflecting I look up and Saw a Señora (a women) Sitting on her doorstep playing with her 3 kids. Without even thinking My Comp followed me to go talk to her.... It was an Experience very difficult to explain in words. The Holy Ghost needs to testify to you all the things I was feeling while speaking to this women, It was revelation just basically telling me... Forget about your past, I need you and your Talents here in this Area now... It was an experience I wont forget, The contact was good, the Women has lots of Intrest, but I know that wasn`t why we needed to talk to her, A lesson learned... I don`t know if that made sense but It changed my perspective on things, Cachai. 

The ward is improving we have an Hermana who is in charge of doing an activity a week with the missionary work in charge, How awesome is that. This past week we did a type of Get to know you activity, No time to explain, but it was a great success, and 2 of our progressing Investigators were able to come. Next week, the theme is valentines day with a small talent show. Activities are key!!!

There are some Young Women in our ward who are preparing to serve missions, they go around and touch doors (Knock) to find people for us to teach hahaha How sick is that hahah. Amazing, Seriously, We are being blessed with some great new people thanks to them. Go find some people in your neighborhoods for the missionaries to teach. 

My Son calls me his Maestro (teacher) or Papito, hahah I can`t help to love that but I correct him and tell to just call me Elder Paxman while laughing, I love him. I want to see him have success. He is such a good Elder hahah. 

I have never seen the Importance of Talking with Everyone in the streets until now. If we don`t talk with people in the streets, we don`t get into houses.... I am learning so much. 

So real quick. My ward in Antofagasta, Las Arenas that I was in for 6 months had a family, Claudia Torres and her 2 sons they have been active members their whole life, her husband isn`t a member. She is on vacation for a few months here in Arica and it just so happens to turn out she is in my ward here, the coincidence, my first Sunday she comes up to me and explains that her son turned 8 the day before and he wants to get baptized at once and not wait til the end of his vacation, and she doesn`t know anyone here, or doesn`t have family worthy to baptize so she asked me, because we were so close with her family in Antofa... So I was pleased to baptize Little Benjamin. Smartest most mature 8 year old I`ve met, Future missionary and Bishop. It was a great experience. 

I have more to write but Its time to get back to work, Until next week. Love you Family and Friends.

I was able to visit some past friends here in Arica from when I was here a year and a half ago, nothing like coming in contact with Your Eternal friends again, My Convert Andres wasn`t in his house:( but next week hopefully.

Elder Paxman


Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Arica Siempre Arica

Well, I made it. I'm up here at the very top of Chile in one of my most favorite cities in my mission. Arica. My Son is awesome. I spent the first few days of the week in Iquique waiting for Wednesday night to head to Antofagasta to have a meeting with all the trainers and New missionaries. Its incredible seeing the Excitement from all the new missionaries. Thursday was the day, to find out who are new companions were. 14 or so New missionaries with all the Trainers in a circle with a Chair in the middle, The Newbie read their First Sector, zone, and who their Papito is. Then everyone claps and crap.... its a  cool experience trust me haha. My son was the last one to read his letter, so he read it along with someone else, The other trainers name is Elder Palmer and both the Newbies said our names at the same time haha so We had to guess hahah Palmer and Paxman sound similar, I´ll show yal the video in 2 years.. But MEET MY COMPANION Elder Cutipa (Pronounced for you White people Coo. Tee. Puh.)  He is from the Capital of Perú, Lima. For all you noobs who don´t know where Perú is, its the country directly above Chile. There are a ton of Peruvians here in the North Of Chile. He is my second Peruvian compañero. He is a recent Convert of only a year and 10 months...... I´ll put this into context for you all. When I started my Mission on March 27th 2013 My companion hadn´t ever talked with the missionaries in his life. And now about 2 years later he is now a representative of Jesus Christ. Wow.... The Testimony and Faith that must take huh.. We have only been together a few days but I can already see something special in him. Having a kid in the mission im sure is very similar to having a kid in real life... Question after question after question, Which is a good thing. He is sooo hungry to learn, He wasn´t able to go out with the missionaries due to work issues before his mission so he is starting literally from Nothing, Which is really cool. I love him. He has a glow to him. He is 24 years old, He was Baptised 22 years old, He is the ONLY member of his family and his parents were completely against him going on a mission, He worked to earn his own money for the past 2 years and has paid for literally everything he has, which isn´t much. He is a happy Peruvian. At times I need to step back and realize how fragile he is. What I do, he does. What a great oppourtunity I have to be a good Papito (Father) to Elder Cutipa.

Opening a sector is not easy. My Companion and I have been walking and walking getting to know the Street names, The Few Investigators the Elders before us were working with and also passing by all the Members houses trying to regain their confidence for the missionary work. Members, Especially in South America, See the Animo of the Missionaries and then follow it. I can honestly say these past 4 days I have never said so many prayers in such a small period of time. Literally having No one to visit, Being lost in the street, My comps Feet full of Blisters. I am fully trusting on the Lord right now, I´ve never felt like this before... Its something special, but very difficult at the same time haha... Its been a rough few days, but I´m learning so much to lean on the Lord, and Follow his Promptings... I have learned sooo much these past few days and only hope to leave this sector 100 Times better than how we found it.

Our Mamita (member who cooks for us, and washes our clothes) is amazing, she is sooo focused on this work, she is the New Relief Society President and has the Petal to the Metal, She has givin us soo many References to visit, and thats what we are basically depending on, The Animo of our mamita... The first time in my mission as well where I get to see something green on my plate everyday for Lunch... She is very worried about the health of the missionaries so she gives us Salad everyday... How happy is my body? Very!!! The Sector hasn´t seen a Baptism in about a year and 7 months... A looong time this area hasn´t seen a Baptism but We have all the Energy to help this ward. What a great challange to finish my mission. Like I said, Giving every last drop of knowledge to my kid and helping him start his mission like he needs. Lots of pressure, but also lots of Confidence. Im giving it all... 

Being able to recieve letters from Recent Converts and Emails from missionaries Wards I have served in, seeing Investigators My comps and I found and now seeing them get Baptised. Hugo Jaime, In Antofagasta, Juan Dias in Tierra Amarilla, Willians in Antofagasta.... No greater feelings than these. Im focused... and Hungry to finish strong. Love you Family, I feel your Prayers, I feel your Love. I know My savior lives, I wouldn´t be who I am today If that weren´t true.

One of the Pictures I'm sending home is of El Morro, A famous Rock thingy here in Arica... Beautiful, I love Arica.

Shining the Shoes of my son, to show the Service I will be giving him as a Papito

George (Gray Jacket 1) One of my best friends In Iquique, Gringo from California, I can´t explain the feelings I have for him.

Onward and Upward;) 
Elder Paxman