Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Week 81

This week was a pedal to the metal kind of week. We didn’t have a ton of cool stuff happen, just had a lot of hard work to do.

Famous…. among children:

So Elder ‘’Heppy on the beats’’ as people call my companion here has made himself quite the star among the flaite kids here. Even though they sometime harass us and treat us terribly, those things are changing now due to my companions rapping skills. There are literally times where we will walk down a street and then out of no-where a herd of kids comes running up to us and starts shouting ‘’HEY MAN, RAP!!! COME ON JUST RAP!’’ I chuckle a bit and I start the whole beatbox thing and then he just whips out a Mormon rap. I’m talking about classics like ‘’Teach Me How to Jimmer’’, some songs from Sons of Provo, and some missionary rap songs that are pretty classic. The kids just laugh and think we’re awesome!

Elder Hepworth is a magician as well. I mean, he knows a ton of magic tricks and we get people and those kids pretty good sometimes. It’s pretty entertaining.

The District:

The district is doing well. Our main challenge is finding people to teach. We have been talking about it a lot as a district. For my Tuesday class I talked a lot about it and talked about what Mosiah 28: 3-4 means to us.

 3 Now they were desirous that salvation should be declared to every creature, for they could not bear that any human soul should perish; yea, even the very thoughts that any soul should endure endless torment did cause them to quake and tremble.

 4 And thus did the Spirit of the Lord work upon them, for they were the very vilest of sinners. And the Lord saw fit in his infinite mercy to spare them; nevertheless they suffered much anguish of soul because of their iniquities, suffering much and fearing that they should be cast off forever.

Basically I talked about getting that desire at all times. It’s really important having that testimony going strong at all times. We talked about a lot of other things, and I felt like I gave a good class. I am feeling much more confident and comfortable in the classes I give. It’s a good feeling trying to serve and inspire not only missionaries but members and other people.

Our work week.

So we tried passing by Alexis multiple times and every time we had a fixed appointment he had an excuse as to why he couldn’t visit. We passed by his house on Sunday on our way to church and he said he would go and he didn’t show up. So we are moving on…

We are making slow but steady progress with the Parra Lopez family. They haven’t decided on a marriage date but I feel like they are getting close. The dad, Mario, has something buried deep because he still won’t go to church no matter what we do to commit him. We are going to have to pull him aside and really find out what is going on.

We had a great time teaching our investigators Yoanna and Griselda. They are liking the gospel. Especially about temples. We just explained all that to them and they loved it. Griselda has to get married and Yoanna has to drop smoking.

That’s where we stand with our investigators. We have some pretty good futures to visit in the week, so we hope we will find someone pretty cool.

That is about it for this week. I felt the spirit a lot and I know that I was strengthened spiritually! I love being in the Lords service. There is no other calling I would ever want over this one.

I love you guys so much! Thank you for all that you do! I hope you have an incredible week! Until the next one!

Elder Ethan Haws

Week 80

Week 80

Wow, what a week. We had an incredible work filled week.

Here are some highlights.

Wait, where are you from?

Perhaps the thing that I’m enjoying most now is walking down the street and talking with everyone. Why? Well, when I start to talk to them they just look at me weird for a second and then ask… ‘’wait, where are you from?’’ They then go on to say that they are surprised because I can speak Spanish clearly, and better than most of the gringos they had ever seen. I feel pretty awesome about that after all the hard times I went through to get to this point. Most actually think I’m Chilean sometimes and that is awesome to me.

Lightning, tremors, fog and predictions:

We’ve seen some interesting natural events and weather here lately. Up north in Copiapo, they were affected with those huge landslides and rain because it hasn’t rained in 20 years up there. Down here we are unnaturally dry. It’s supposed to be rainy and basically winter weather but we are just seeing sunshine most of the time. Yeah, it’s getting colder but it is really different than what it should be. We have also had some serious fog on the hill for the last few days… Its super thick fog, sometimes it’s almost as thick as I’ve ever seen fog get….

We are seeing a lot of tremors lately. I personally haven’t felt a single one because we are walking around all day but there is one nearly every other day now. Scientists are coming out with reports that the continental plates are following the same exact pattern that it did in 2010 when ConcĂ© got rocked with that huge earthquake. Most people are antsy now because it was exactly how it happened 5 years ago…. So we’ll have to see if an earthquake rolls by sometime.

Also, I forgot to mention this but on my first day in the sector we had a lightning storm come over the sector all day. It was SO awesome hearing the boom of thunder again. Oh man it made me pretty trunky for Utah weather, I’m not gonna lie.


So we got an awesome reference from some hermanas from another sector. They said that this was the brother of an awesome member in their ward. They said he was golden, so this week we immediately passed by. We got into his house and then started to talk. He’s this really chill 23 year old guy who was really friendly. In our lesson we found that he has been meeting with missionaries for years now and has read the book of Mormon all the way through, and has been waiting to get baptized. Our jaws dropped right open…. We were shocked.  We put him with a baptismal date and then committed him to church (or general conference and he said he had time for any session). We walked out of that lesson so grateful for that blessing and we were just on top of the world.

Turns out he had stuff come up in the weekend and procrastinated getting to the chapel so he didn’t make it. Also we found out he has a complicated work schedule so we are just going to see how this whole thing works out. I hope we can coordinate so that we can have a good baptism soon.

Parra Lopez:

This is an incredible family that we have been working with. They are making good progress. The parents are Margarita, and Mario. Their daughters are Noemi, Laura, and Escarlet. Margarita and Mario aren’t married and Laura is 13 and hasn’t been baptized. Margarita isn’t a member either. So we are working with them so that they can get married, get baptized and get sealed together. We had one of the best lessons ever this week and invited them all to conference. They even accepted to start to prep for marriage and eventually get sealed. Elder Hepworth made up a really cool card magic trick that taught that lesson well. It was great.

Turns out that Mario, even after being strongly committed to go to church, hasn’t gone to church once during the time Elder Hepworth has taught him. There is definitely something deeper. We will have to see what we can do to get the whole family going. Margarita and the daughters are eating the gospel up. They love it.

General conference:

I loved conference and definitely learned a lot.  I think that my 3 favorite talks were from Wilford W. Anderson, Elder Eyring in the priesthood session, and Elder Hollands (that’s always a classic). I loved the spirit that came with those talks. It was a powerful 5 sessions. I love general conference. It was a good time to rest a bit, but still mentally exhausting from all the doctrine I learned. It was just what I needed and answered all of my personal questions at the moment. I am looking forward to studying the talks.

Elder Hepworth and I are doing good work. We are having lots and lots of success. I’ve never been so blessed in my mission. We are having a blast out here. I am definitely more content than ever. Sure, I am exhausted from all these new responsibilities but I feel God’s hand more than I ever have in my life guiding me on and helping me up. I love the lord’s work. And I love being in his service.

Thanks for everything guys. I love you so much, and I am so grateful for your messages and inspiration. Thank you for all that you do for me. I love you all and I miss you.
Until next week.

Elder Ethan Haws

Week 79

Phew, that was possibly the longest week of my life!

District leader!  The stresses and the blessings:

What can I say; being district leader has been, I believe, the craziest thing that has happened to me in my mission to this point. I never believed I would be this busy with responsibilities and be so blessed with the energy to continue onward in the mission. It is the most amazing time of my mission!

My district is awesome. It’s me, Elder Hepworth, Elder Watts and Bennion (the two biggest missionaries in the mission, having played football and all) and two Hermanas: Johnson and Fernandez.

I had a good district class on Wednesday. I prepared a ton being stressed and all and ended up using like 10 minutes of it all for the entire hour and a half……  The responsibilities are many, but after doing so many things I don’t know what happens but I still feel like going out and giving all I can to the work.

I feel like my mission has been like this….  I got to the mission and metaphorically it was like showing up at a huge long road for driving the best cars in the world. All of a sudden someone pulled up and gave me the opportunity to ride in a Lamborghini to advance down this road. Others also had the same opportunity. I got in and started off well, and as I went down I had technical issues and the car didn’t seem to be shifting right. Others sped past me and I struggled to get really going; not really knowing how to drive the thing. But as time went I got control, I launched the thing down the road racing down as far as I can to make up for the lost time.
I feel like I am finally making some really good progress here in the mission. I think things are starting to all make sense and become more than natural. I feel a power with giving my all to the savior. I no longer have anytime to do anything for myself. It is ALL to him. There is a power that I have felt from that this week. I feel incredibly happy, and incredibly satisfied.

 The sector!

First off the scenery in the sector is fantastic. I felt so good from going to just seeing run down and ugly buildings and apartments to being on massive hills, next to forests and getting raw views of the sea. I'll be taking lots of pictures. It is a BEAUTIFUL place.

Despite the beauty, it is a bit dangerous. Not nearly what I thought it was going to be but still we have had scary looking guys come up to us at night and you just feel like they are going to rob you. But we just talk them out of it by contacting them and the spirit helps them away. I’m not even joking, it’s awesome seeing Gods protection!

So Centinela was once two wards and a branch, and now it’s just a branch. It reminds me of the feelings that were in Retiro. It’s just like going back there and dealing with the same dramatic things, so just look forward to hearing about that stuff again.

I’m so happy to be in Centinela we have many possible baptisms coming up and the sector had really been doing well for some time now.

 My companion!

My companion Elder Hepworth is awesome. I don’t think I’ve gotten along with a companion so quickly and so well than anyone else. We are already great friends. We are working hard and I think that is the best part of it all: we do good work. We had a great work week and we saw great things happen. I’m just content with it all. He is a professional at Family History work as you can see here…

He has already taught me a bunch of things. It’s going to be a great transfer with this guy. I am so blessed with what I have at the moment.

Also in our little house we are 4 elders that live together. There’s me and my companion, and Elder Copling from Herriman and Elder Smoot from Pleasant grove. We’re all from Utah and live really close!! It’s a pretty hilarious group we have here.

The initiative:

So the best highlight of it all is possibly the whole initiative that we have going on… I’m sure you guys have heard and seen the ‘’Because He Lives’’ video, and if you haven’t…

We are going ham with this whole thing and sharing it with everyone. So I invite all of you to do the same whether it is on social media or in person, you need to share this. It is incredible to know that our savior lives and guides his church. It is so comforting to know that we are a part of his church and he cares for every one of us. He suffered more than we can comprehend and invites us to come unto him and accept his help. We need to share the good news as much as possible.

The week was very long but very rewarding. I am looking forward to the week especially general conference where we will get to hear from our prophet. It’s like Christmas to me I swear. I love it so much.

I love all you guys! Thank you so much for your support. Until next week! Have a great week!

Elder Ethan Haws!