Monday, December 16, 2013

Week 28

We did a lot of traveling this week. On Tuesday, we worked with the hermanas in Angol. That went really well. We found 4 people who accepted baptismal dates! We will see how those go in the coming weeks. On Thursday, we went to Temuco for the Christmas Conference. Every zone that was there had to create a dance/song and then perform for all the other missionaries. That was a lot of fun. We also got pillows for Christmas!  The week in Renaico went really well, too. We are teaching 8 people who have baptismal dates and are hoping to see at least 2 this month. We are teaching a man named Luis and his son, Luis. Almost all of their family was just baptized recently, so we are looking to help them complete that. It has made me think about why we are really here. We aren´t here to baptize people. We are here to bless the lives of everyone by helping them become a part of an eternal family. Thanks to the Restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ, we have the same power that the apostles had to bind on Earth and Heaven. In temples, we have the opportunity to be sealed to our families and to our spouses for eternity. I´ve said it before, but that is the #1 goal that I have, to be sealed to my family forever. The peace, hope, and comfort that brings is something that I want everyone to have. Although that´s not possible for me right now, I can help others experience that. There is no greater gift than sharing the gospel with others. I hope everyone has a great week!

Elder Reynolds

Elder Martinez from Guatemala, who goes home after this transfer period

Some pictures of Tijeral, which is a little pueblo outside of Renaico

Some pictures of Tijeral, which is a little pueblo outside of Renaico

Monday, December 9, 2013

Week 27

This week was crazy. I can´t remember if I wrote about this, but Elder Carlson, one of the missionaries in Coronel who was training, had to leave early to go work in the office and left his son there with Elder Hill and I. So, I spent the last part of the week with two new missionaries. That was a fun experience, though. Elder Baggs is a really good guy, too. It was a fun way to end my time in Coronel. I think the hardest part about being a missionary is saying goodbye to all the people that you´ve grown to love. It was like leaving home again. On Tuesday, I headed to Renaico. It´s really pretty here. It´s really green, there is fruit everywhere, there isn´t pollution like in Coronel, there aren´t millions of stray dogs and vast quantities of garbage in the streets, and the people don´t yell things at you as much. My companion, Elder Escalante is a great guy. We get along well. We work in two branches. One is in Renaico and the other in a small town called Tijeral. I went to church in Tijeral this week. There are about 26 active members there, but they are all really great and all have the desires to help with the missionary work. My first day, we ate lunch in Tijeral. After, we went into a members backyard and ate raspberries, strawberries, cherries, and other fruits off the trees in her backyard. I also ate a fruit off a tree while my companion and I were walking in Renaico. There is fruit everywhere. We found a lot of people to teach this week: 22 new investigators, which is the most, by far, that I´ve ever found in a week. The people here are really receptive. I look forward to becoming a part of the work here and hope that I can do at least some good here. My new district is great. The two other elders here in Renaico and two hermanas in Angol are in my district. I´ll be working in Angol with them tomorrow. We have a Christmas conference in Temuco on Thursday, so I´m excited about that. That´s way south of here. HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE MOST WONDERFUL WOMAN ON THE FACE OF THE EARTH: MY MOM! It´s hard to believe that she will already be 30 years old! WOW! Also, happy 11 month anniversary to my wonderful, beautiful, intelligent girlfriend, Micaela Morgan Wright. She forgot about our anniversary, but I didn´t! Further proof that I love her more than she loves me. Next month will be a full year! Time really flies when you have the most amazing woman in the world, other than my mom, by your side. Have a wonderful week, everyone! 
"Elder Baggs, Elder Hill, and I. My short time as a single mother of two."

Monday, December 2, 2013

Week 26

I found out today that I am being transferred to Renaico as a district leader. My new companion will be Elder Escalante. He´s from Mexico. I´ve really enjoyed my time here in Coronel and have learned a lot. I think Elder Hill trained me more than I trained him. He really helped me to be more humble and to be more patient. He´s a great example for me. He´s a great missionary and I hope to work with him again in the future. We didn´t have a ton of success this week, but we did see a miracle. We were in an area of Coronel called Lo Rojas a few days ago because we had an appointment. We went, but no one was there. We went to our back-up appointment and no one was there either. We started walking around looking for someone to teach when we walked by a woman with a bunch of bags. All she said was "hola," but the Spirit just screamed at us that we should talk to her. It turns out that her family had been taught by the missionaries when she was a little girl. No one in the family was baptized, but many years later she took the lessons again. This time, she was ready to be baptized, along with the rest of her family (her and her 4 daughters). However, she was unable to because she didn´t pass the baptismal interview due to a couple of commandments she wasn´t following. She moved shortly after that to Coronel. This experience goes to show that, even when we think things aren´t going our way (both of our appointments fell and we had nothing else to do), it´s all a part of The Lord´s grand plan for His children. We should always remember how small our viewpoint is in comparison to The Lord´s. He always knows best, even when we are convinced that we know better. Have a great week, everyone! I love you, Micaela Morgan Wright!

Elder Reynolds

Victoria Mendez and her mother, Victoria Bustos with Elder Reynolds

Elder Reynolds and Lienturl 

He couldn't leave the dog out!