Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Whats up my beloved family!! Can you believe that it is almost Christmas??! Sounds like you all are doing so well! I can't believe how fast the time goes by! Wow this has probably been one of the craziest weeks of my whole mission!

To begin it has been so hot! The sun is so stinking strong up here and I am always sweating like a dog and I am always soosooosoososossos thirsty! Haha you all know me! I drink and drink and drink. This week in Zapahuira we worked like dogs. We found 15 new investigators and we are just working so hard to try and get a baptism by the end of this month. 

Wednesday we had a zone conference. Man it was so incredible. I received so many answers to my prayers. President Bruce is so inspired! Honestly I am so amazed, the things that he said I swear were just for me! The best part was he had not even planned to go over to a certain set of scriptures to share and he felt inspired to do so. It was such a wonderful spiritual experience and man it was strong. As a mission we are very close to hitting 1000 baptisms this year and we need to pull through! We had a great lunch with a type of Chilean taco it was really good. Sister Bruce came and sat next to me and I got to talk to her for a while. She is super nice and wonderful and it was cool to get to know her a bit more.  Honestly they are so amazing I am so sad that I only get to have them till July  During the lunch break we played a little game. Every missionary had to buy a small gift worth 6 bucks and then we wrapped it and played the present pass along game with the story when someone reads a story. The two pass along words were Christmas and baptisms. It was so awesome! 

During the conference president asked me if I had my ankles taped and was ready to teach someone how to be a missionary. He told me I was going to be training next transfer. After Zone conference some of the elders from the office brought over new beds and a closet that we needed to set up in the pension. That night Elder Todd and I were up till 3 am finishing everything  We were absolutely wasted with all of the spiritual, physical and mental energy that we had lost. 

Friday afternoon the assistants came with us to do exchanges. I was with elder ceballos who is a complete stud. It was so much fun to go and talk to him and I was able to ask him for advice and we had a great time. He had previously served in Zapahuira for 6 months so he helped me know more of the members who give references and we found a less active who has 4 kids who are not baptized it was awesome! He was completely inspired to go there and we went to the house of the lady and Elder ceballos asked her if she had been praying for help and she said that she had recently. It was awesome. We finished the exchange with a inventory of the day and a review. He told me that I am doing very well in the and that I am going to be a great leader in this mission. He told me that president Bruce has a lot of trust in me and expects a lot of me and says that i am going to be one of the future studs of the mission. It was awesome, I look up to elder ceballos a lot he is an amazing teacher, and i hope to be able to be a missionary like him. He is truly a Christ like servant. 

Saturday we worked all day long and did really well. We found a great family who will progress and we had a great first lesson with them. The spirit was strong. But Saturday night we had to take elder Todd to the bus terminal because he finished his mission. It was really weird to see someone leave. Oh yeah Saturday during the day one of the water cord/pipes broke so we couldn't shower for 2 days! It was awful. But this morning we went and bought the pipe and i took a nice cold shower and ohhhh it felt so good. 

Anyways so because there is a group going home for Christmas there are these special transfers. So we didn't think that anything was really going to happen to us. But then elder ceballos calls me and says elder we have a cambio for you. I was like noooo way don't take me from Arica. He then says we are now going to close zapahuira B. And you are going to finish training Elder Sunderland. I was so shocked! So now I am senior comp and finishing the training of Elder Sunderland Elder todds kid. Then he was like oh yeah I have one more surprise for ya, you are also going to be district leader. I was so shocked. So now I am moved to the ward of pukarani which is a lot like the barrio lynch. it has a assistance of 50 or so and I have got a lot of work to here.   I am so excited for this new ward. We are going to work our tails off! Yahoo!! I think that I am probably going to finish his training and then train another new missionary in January. 

Last night we got straight to work in the new ward and we taught a less active family and they have a friend who is an investigator who lives with them. He is progressing and we had a great lesson about the restoration. He accepted the challenge to be baptized.

Elder Tymczyczyn just emailed me and told me that the ward in lynch is doing extremely well. I am so happy to hear that. He told me that one of the family´s that we reactivated Vicente and Francisca, That vicente just got called as the ward mission leader and is going awesome. Also I don't know if you remember monserat. She is the daughter of Rodrigo the less active that we reactivated. Anyways they are doing so well. And after we had baptized monserat the 9 year old, she doesn't know how to read. And I promised her in the name of Jesus Christ that is she would try to read the book of Mormon that she would learn. Elder Tym just shot me an email and said that she can now read. Hahah sick right! Haha anyway family I love this so much! Maybe I'm never coming home! Haha jk but this is awesome! I love my savior Jesus Christ so much. My heavenly father is blessing me so much! This work is real! It is incredible! Have such a great week! I will email on the 24th and then we will Skype on Christmas! Yahooo!!!

Elder Newman

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Hello familia I hope that all is well. I am in Arica and it is hot hot hot! Its super hard to believe that it is Christmas time because we are in the middle of summer down here! Much to update! I hope that you are all doing well.

Monday night I arrived to Arica at 11 pm and then I went with the Zone leader Elder Lucero from Cali to his pension. We slept in his pension and waited both of our companions who were coming from Antofagasta. Tuesday morning arrived elder Lastarria. He has been in the mission for 9 months now and is doing really well. He is from buenos aires and is 19 years old. Our pension is super clean and super nice. It is the nicest pension I have seen in the whole mission. We are with Elder Todd who is an ex assistant and his companion Elder Sunderland. Elder Todd is training Elder Sunderland but elder Todd leaves this Saturday because the church is sending a group of missionaries home early for Christmas. So there are special transfers this Saturday and we are not really sure what is going to happen. But Tuesday we went and bought some food and went straight to work. The people are very nice here. In Iquique the people are a little bit more tough and hardened but here they are more nice. I am in a little town it is so calm and quiet. Iquique was very loud with cars and trucks honking all the time but Arica is very calm. It is very weird ha ha because I was so used to Iquique. My companion is obedient to which I am so grateful. This week we have just been working on finding finding and finding. The Lord has led us to some great people who seems that have potential. This week we have many lessons with potential new investigators that will be great. Unfortunately none of the investigators that we had found and taught came to church. We were expecting 2 investigators that said they would come to church and we went to go to their houses to pick them up and they were sleeping and we couldn't get them to come to the doors and we don't have a cell phone right now so we didn't´t have many options. 

Yesterday we went to go teach a member  who is a lady who lives alone with her daughter. My companion looked over to me as it was my turn to teach a lesson. I began to flip through my scriptures asking Heavenly Father what do i teach what do i teach and then I saw Mosiah 24 and thought that I would share that. We had a great lesson as we talked about how the lord will help us take the burdens off our back if we come unto him and trust him patiently waiting on him. She started to cry as she told us many of the problems that she has been facing with not having work and not having a job. It was a blessing. After that she gave us a reference to a family that we could go teach so I was happy. 

The other day we were passing by a house and then I started to slow down a bit and then me and my comp looked at each other and we knew we were supposed to go that house. I went in and talked to the lady and she said that  she was just talking with her friend how the Lord has blessed her in her life, then i talked to her a little bit about the church and as i continued to talk to her she became interested and told us to come back when he daughter is there so we will pass by this week. Stuff like this happens almost everyday but I love when the Lord guides us to people who are ready to receive the gospel. Our ward seems pretty good like they are wiling to help and work with us. So I am excited to see what we can do this transfer. 

Today we went to the beach with the two zones from Arica and played ultimate Frisbee and football!!!!! Not soccer football. But real American football!! It was really fun! I met a few new cool elders a few that went to Timpview high school and they seem really good. I am excited to be able to talk to you in 15 days! It honestly doesn't seem like its going to come! I hope that you are enjoying this Christmas season! I include you all in my prayers and think about you all! I know this work that we do is real, that we are guided every single day. As long as we are obedient, work our tails off and work smart, the Lord will bless us with many opportunities and success. This Wednesday we have a mini zone conference so that will be sweet!

Love you all,

Elder Newman

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

¡Hola Famila! Espero que esten bien. 

Hello my sweet family and wonderful friends. I hope that you are all well and are enjoying this Christmas season. As far about the news about transfers... I am going to Arica! I leave today at 5:30 and I am going to be in the sector Zapahuira with Elder Lastarria. I know that I am going to be in the furthest north in Chile the furthest north in Arica. I am going to be on the border of Arica and Peru and it is going to be hot hot hot. I don't know really anything about my companion and sector but Arica is going to be awesome! I am so excited. 

We had another really busy week and it was a great last week to finish the transfer. The baptism of Graham went awesome. This kid is going to be so great. I know that he is going to do great things for the church in these last days. We baptized him on Friday and then I confirmed him Sunday morning. He told me thank you so much for being the miracle in his life. But in reality it was a miracle that we found him. I am so grateful to the Lord for letting us teach him and baptize him. I hope to see this guy doing great work for other people and I really hope that he will consider serving a mission. 

We have been working with a part member family who is less active. The mom was baptized when she was young and then one of the daughters was baptized in June but had a few problems and then was unsure of herself. I had lost contact with them and hadn't seen them for a while. But one day as we were walking down the street I saw them from a distance and contacted her and we have been meeting with them. They daughters have been attending church with the mom and then the younger daughter who is not baptized took out all of her piercings the other day when we went there. The younger daughter knows that the church is true and we are just trying to prepare her for baptism. The dad also has begun listening to us and Elder Tym is going to work with him. I hope that they can baptize this family. 

Yesterday in church they gave me a bit of time and I announced that I would be going to Arica. I then took some time and bore my testimony to the members. The spirit was very strong and there were many who had tears in their eyes. I love this ward so much and I am going to miss it. In my testimony I talked about the 3 fold mission of the church and explained each part of it to the members. Perfect the Saints, Proclaim the gospel and redeem the dead. We had a great testimony meeting and then after church we took pictures with many of the members. It was sad as I saw these little girls of the families that we had worked with cry hahaha but it is nice to know that we have had some impact in the lives of these people. It makes me so happy to see the change that comes as we guide the people to come unto Christ. So see the blessings come into their lives and to change. 

After church we finished the day working. We are also teaching a husband whose family is members but he is not. The spirit was really strong and I challenged him to be baptized. He knows that the church is true he just needs to receive the confirmation from the Lord so he can have his own testimony. He accepted and I am hoping that Elder Tymczyszyn can baptize him. I would love to see some of these families go to the temple and be sealed. 

Anyways reflecting back on this last sector I have learned many things. We weren't able to watch the Christmas devotional but i went to the LDS web page and read a bit of it. I just add to what president Monson said what a great quote It is well to remember that he who gives money gives much; he who gives time gives more; but he who gives of himself gives all.” I hope that we can come unto our savior in this time when we have to reflect more upon him. And like president Monson said give ourselves to others. Because he who loseth his life, shall find it. Have a great week family. I love you so much. I love this work and am happy to be here! 

Elder Newman

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!!

I didn't even realize that this week was going to be thanksgiving! How crazy. My mind at times still thinks I am back in October and then I realize we are almost hitting December  How crazy! Congratulations to Mitch on his mission call that is so great and i am sure he is so excited! He will have to look out for elder Cameron Deere who is also over there in that mission. Wow how fast the weeks go by I don't even to how to describe how fast the mission is. I am almost hitting 6 months. Does it not go fast for you guys up there? I feel like the world is moving so fast! Ha-ha anyway it was a great week this week and I will try to cover everything that happened. 

So remember how in my letter last week we went looking for a hermano in the ward and the Lord guided us to contact like 3 or 4 important people? So one of them was a 19 year old girl named Jaritza and she was super nice and said we could pass by over to the families house anytime. So we were leaving an apartment the other day and then I told my comp that I felt like we needed to go over to that house. So we touch that house and then we find the mom and dad are there alone. But they let us in and were super nice and then we started to talk to them about the gospel. We come to find out that the Dad is a inactive and has been inactive for 11 years. The whole family used to go to church together when the two kids were really young but then they saw some problems with members in the church and then decided to leave. The dads whole family is super strong in the church, his sister served missions brother bishop. But his wife was never baptized. We taught them the restoration and he began to remember more about everything that he had forgotten about. I have come to find how interesting it is about how less actives forget everything about the church. There have been people who have been to the temple and things and they become inactive and just forget everything! It really is crazy when someone loses the spirit they really lose themselves in this pathway to God. But back to this family we were teaching them and they began to talk about how they have had an empty feeling for a while and when they went to church it was the happiest time of their lives. This family still lives the principles of the gospel but they are worried for their kids who are now 18 and 19 and getting ready to leave the house. The mom had talked about how the things that week had been improving and the moment before we arrived she started to feel a little bit of peace and she said while we were there she felt so good. I know Heavenly Father was preparing this family to be found by us. But the bad part is when we went back the other day apparently the mom and dad had a fight and the dad went up to work in the mines a day early to aviod problems. Satan tries to attack as soon as we begin to make a little bit of progress. 

Our baptismal fechas are doing well. We have a baptism this Saturday of a daughter of a less active that we reactivated. Also we changed Grahams baptism to the 30th of November  He works in the mines 7 por 7 which means he is up there for 7 days and here 7 days. And we didn't want him to feel rushed and we prayed and decided to wait till the 30th. 

We also found another great family who needs the Lord desperately. They are at the point of separation and divorce but just as we arrived the Lord guided us to talk to the daughter one night on the street. The best part is that the ward has started a marriage class recently and the whole family came to church yesterday. We are going to continue to work with them everyday to try and help them change their path. They have a daughter who is 16 her name is Kimberly and two sons. Every single day we try to have contact with these people so they can grow and improve. Because Satan will enter and speak to their minds if we are not careful and giving constant preparation and work like captain Moroni in Alma 50. 

We had a Zone Conference on Friday and it was awesome! The day before our ZLs told us that we needed to prepare a 2 minute talk about asking inspired questions and that missionaries would be selected to give their talks. That morning before we left I told my comp that I had a feeling that we were going to be called to give our talks. Sure enough the first to give the talks were Elder Newman and Elder Tymczyszyn. I talked about Ammon and King Lamoni. How when we ask questions and then with the help of the spirit we can find peoples iceburgs or problems that they need help with. At zone conference we talked about many things but one of the greatest parts was practicing teaching at the end. President Bruce told us that right now we have around 160 or so missionaries and we are going to receive up to 220. It is very necessary because there is so much work in our sector we run like crazy dogs all day long and we just cannot cover everything that needs to be done. Sunday we had 6 investigators in church with 15 less actives. Our attendance is increasing in the ward and we are trying to keep up with our real growth. 

This morning as a zone we went to the beach and played soccer. It was really fun! I hope that you are all doing so well and are doing everything possible to serve the Lord and to prepare his kingdom for his coming. Something cool that president Bruce said was that the church is coming out of the darkness. It is so true. He said that at conference this last session there was over 4000 newspapers and news stuff and then the last conferences there was like 600. The church is growing and every day more I realize how we need to be completely dedicated to the Lord. I love you all so much! Have a wonderful thanksgiving! I am so grateful for a family who supports me in everything that i do! I am grateful to be apart of the building of the Lords kingdom! Have a great week!

Elder Newman

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Hello family! 

Monday night as we were leaving the pension to go work this 6 year old comes running to us from the play ground asking us for help. We have no idea who this kid is and so we follow him over to the play ground and his down syndrome cousin will not go back to the house. My companion and I are asking ourselves where are the parents of these kids? Here we are in the middle of iquique and there are 2 kids under 6 one who is downs and their parents are no where to be found. We try to get this kid back to his house with his mom and the grandma who was taking care of the kids sees us entering the apartment with them. We go to the fifth floor with them and we are trying to get the mom or grandma or someone to come to help us and we begin knocking the door and ringing the doorbell and no one is coming. I am thinking where is the grandma! It is obvious that the Lord wants us to help these kids having the little kid come running to us specifically but where in the world is the grandma who just saw us.   We knocked and knocked on the door and finally the grandma opened the door and poked her head out the window and we were like helloo??? Here are your two grand kids?? She was inside doing something but it was crazy. 

Friday night we had a fun activity. We went with the men from the ward to play soccer on the beach at night! We played at 9 at night and there were less actives who came and a few investigators. The beach has lights it  was so much fun! At the beginning of the game they said ¡Todo Vale! Which means anything goes! Ha ha I was so stoked when i heard those words. I felt like i was under the lights one more time! I was running around like a crazy kid like i was playing football again!  I made 3 out of the 10 goals! Ha ha it was so much fun! They were all shocked by this crazy gringo! They were asking me if i took anything before we played like a red bull or something and I was like No! Es como juego yo! Es mi Ser! Saying like nope that's just how I play, its who i am! They started to call me red bull as a nickname  Haha it was awesome one time I was running full speed across the field to get the ball and accidentally leveled one of the 20 year olds and took him off his feet.  I felt bad because it wasn't intentional i was just going for the ball. But i picked him up and said sorry. Anyway it was fun and we are going to try and get the less actives and investigators to attend so we can strengthen the relationships in this ward. 

The baptisms went great! They were so happy and Denis was crying a little bit after her baptism telling us thank you for the things that we had done. It was great. Elder Tym baptized and confirmed Denis and I baptized and confirmed Esmeralda  They are going to be great in the ward and have much to add. It is so great to see the blessing of the gospel enter the family and change the direction and course of the lives forever. They ultimately have the agency to decide where and to continue on the path but it is our job to get them started and to get them through the door and onto the path which is baptism. Speaking of baptism we are probably going to baptize graham this Sunday morning before church because he works in the mines and it will work out the best with this schedule. He is so ready to be baptized it was a miracle that we received him as a reference. 

Yesterday at church was a miracle. We had 19 less actives come and then we had 2 investigators. One of the less active family who we have been working with Rodrigo and Nicole are the parents of Montserrat who we are going to baptize 24th. Please include them in your prayers that we can follow through with these 2 baptisms. Anyways we are doing really well. We are trying to find great new people to teach. As we look for people to teach it is interesting at times how the Lord guides is to find people. The other night contacting we were trying to find a house of a hermano in the ward and i prayed to know where to go and i felt we needed to turn right so we went right and we went back and forth and we ended up talking to many people who are ready to receive the gospel and then we were lead to a person who knew where they lived and she is also very receptive and ready to receive the gospel. 

Thursday I got to go on exchanges with and elder Steiner who has been in the mission for like 6 months but he is a bit more timid so i got to take the control and it was awesome! I was in his sector and i just took control and was being bold and together we found 3 new investigators and some great people to teach. It was awesome, I have learned so much about contacting and talking to people from Elder Tym. He is really good with contacts and I have been practicing so that when i leave I can carry these skills. 

I hope you are all doing so well. I love you all so much. I miss you all and think about you. You are all in my prayers and I am so glad to be here. I am loving this more and more as time continues. Have a great week. 

Con Amor, 

Elder Newman

Tuesday, November 6, 2012


Hola from a beauiful sunny afternoon in Iquique Chile. 

Our investigators Denis and her little sister are progressing very well. We have their baptism scheduled for this Saturday and it will be awesome! They have progressed so much and are changing everyday. The little sisters name is Esmeralda and she is just this little angel. From the beginning she has been so receptive and is the peacemaker of the home. The mom was a less active member but has been less active since she was 15 years old. There are 2 boys under 6 and the 2 girls and the mom is pregnant. We are excited for the baptism of the 2 girls this Saturday night. My companion is going to baptize Denis and Esmeralda wants me to baptize her. 

We had a miracle as this is our finding week as emphasized by President Bruce in our monthly vision. We had a reference given to us by the other elders in the zone and his name is Graham and is 20 years old. We finally get a cita with him and then we go and teach him. He tells us that he had a girlfriend who now lives in Antofagasta and she is a member of the church. Anyways the girlfriend had told him that people need to be pure and clean to enter the temple and so he had always had a curiosity about the church. Last week he had stopped the missionaries in the street in another sector and had wanted to learn more about the gospel. So we went to teach him and had a great first lesson and he came to church on Sunday and loved it. We went and taught him this morning and we set a baptismal date for the 24th so I am pumped! He is a potential missionary candidate too so we are excited. 

In Chile they celebrate Halloween  but it is really small. I think maybe 30% maybe of Chileans knows what Halloween is, but sure enough there was some little kids with their parents in the streets who were looking for candy. But more than anything on the 1st of November they have their own memorial day here. I forgot to take a picture of the cemetery but here in Chile everyone is buried above ground. Anyways on this day the cemetery is packed full of people and they walk to go visit their ancestors with flowers and things. We went with the whole zone to go contact them and talk about the plan of salvation.

we are really excited for our baptisms this coming Saturday and hope to see miracles continue to unfold every single day!   I pray that all is well. 

Elder Newman
Hello family!

Crazy to see a picture of the snow up there! Down here we are heating up by the day as we enter into summer. It is crazy how fast the time has gone, I am now 5 months as a missionary and it makes me sick to think that soon I will be at 6 months. Wow what a great week we had with a roller coaster of emotions. I have come to learn that a mission is like a roller coaster, one point you can feel like you are on top of the world and then the next you can be bummed for something that happened. However we continue to press forward with faith in Christ and work work work. 

Tuesday we were walking down the street and Elder Tym contacted this lady who was from Chicago and was here in Chile teaching english to the kids. I started to talk to her about the gospel in english and it was so hard. It was so hard to talk about the gospel in english to her and I found myself wanting to naturally transition back to spanish as that felt so much more comfortable. It was an odd experience. 

We found a great family of 3 who we taught Thursday night. Their names are Pretrufka, Francisco and Javier. Javier is the son, but we taught them the first lesson on Thursday night and it was so awesome. The spirit was so strong and as we left they hardly wanted us to leave, we reset an appointment with them and then later went and worked with some other potential baptismal candidates. We taught the family again on Saturday night about the book of Mormon and we hope that they will receive their answer about the truth of our message. They are golden and are so prepared to receive the gospel. 

On Friday we had a funny experience. So in our pension we have some really old mattresses that are old, so we have a family that we are teaching that does not have a bed for their kids to sleep on. Well they have a bed but its boards with sheets and clothes underneath as padding, so the kids sleep on that. Elder Tym decided that we were going to take these mattresses over to them and we carried these mattresses through the streets through the centro and everything it was funny people were giving us weird looks and I am sure they were wondering what on earth we were doing. 

I got a call from Elder Smith (my trainer) the other night. He is doing really good and informed me that he is back up from Copaipo and is in Iquique as my zone leader. I was pretty excited so i am sure we will do an exchange soon because I know he will want to come and visit this sector with me like old times. 

It was a great week! We have 2 baptismal dates right now for the 10th of November and we are hoping for 3-4 this month. Have such a great week! It is all true! Keep pressing forward with faith in Christ! Make a difference in the world by praying everyday for an opportunity to share the gospel! Love you all so much. 

Elder Newman

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Hello Family! 

Hope that you are all doing very well! I can't believe that I am almost 5 months into my mission! Crazy how fast time has gone! My 2nd transfer in the field is finished and I am now starting my third. I am staying in Iquique. I am staying here with Elder Tymczyszyn.   I am happy to stay here and enjoy this wonderful sector.  It really is a great place to be and I love it here. There are many people here who are waiting to receive the gospel. 

The baptism on Saturday was great. It started an hour late because of some problems.  I baptized Leninka and everything went really well. It was great to get pictures of her and Mary together and to see the change that has occurred in them over the last 2 months. It is really incredible to see how much happiness the gospel brings to people and how the savior can change our nature. 

This week we really saw the blessings of the priesthood unfold. We were blessed with many opportunities this to use the priesthood. What a great experience it was. Wednesday we were teaching Leninka about the restoration. Mary was also there and their friend Graciela. They have a friend who lives on the floor above us who joined us for the lesson. They are so excited every time that we come and can hardly wait until we arrive to teach and be with them.  We watched the restoration and then towards the end I had directed the focus towards the friend Graciela. I helped her recognize the spirit and then committed her to pray and know for herself. Mary had been sick with a fever and was not feeling very good at all and then as we were leaving I felt impressed to ask Mary if she wanted a blessing. She said please and so then we gave a blessing to her to that she could be healed. Then Graciela asked if we could give a blessing to her son who had also been very sick. So we then gave him a blessing. The next day when we saw them and Mary was healed and felt amazing and the son by the end of the night was completely healed. It was so cool. We were also blessed this week to have 2 other opportunities to bless children of less actives who asked for blessing. Both of those 2 kids were healed as well. It was awesome. I know the priesthood of God is real. I testify that miracles happen everyday. 

This week I had some wonderful food. Mmmm it was soooo good. One day a part member family took us to a Chinese restaurant! It was great! Wasn't quite shanghai express from Marlton NJ but it was great! So good to have a mix of food from the usual down here. Also we ate with a member family one day and the fixed us a Venezuelan dish. It was also very tasty. The best part was fried bananas. So have you ever seen the bananas that are huge?  Well they cut those into long slices and then they fried it. Mmmm it was goood. It was like Tucanos a bit when they fry the bananas but in strips. As far as meals we have been trying to eat with members everyday of the week so that we can spend time with them. Lots of rice, sometimes chicken, and on occasion beans. Look up Churassco you'll see the classic Chilean meat.

I keep forgetting to tell you this, but there is a hermana in our zone from Paraguay. When she first came here I asked if she knew an elder Newman. She said she did some years ago. She is 31 years old and was a doctor, but she said she knew an elder Newman in Paraguay. So it might have been Tyler. Her name is Hermana Nuñez. Ask Tyler if he remembers this family. 

We have been working with some new investigators that we found this week. We are trying to make November a big month. It seems like looking at the front of everything the months have so much potential with baptisms and then things fall through, investigators don't progress and then we only end up with 1 or 2 baptisms. I am trying to figure out how we can become closer and keep these investigators we have worked so hard to find. 

Time passes so fast out here. I know that the church is true. We see miracles every week and the spirit guides us frequently throughout the day. I know that we have a living prophet on the earth today who holds and exercises priesthood keys. We just need to remember that God has a plan for each of us. And as we strive to do our best, to keep the commandments, to study and pray and do what we need to do, he will put us where we need to be, when we need to be there. Have a great week family! I love and miss you all!

Elder Newman

Monday, October 15, 2012

Hello Family! 

Sounds like lots of sports and more sports and sports have been going on lately. Haha I'm sure dad is in heaven watching the Yankees play every night! Everyone here refers to me as a Yankee being from the states,its funny. Pass a happy birthday to the grandpas and have fun at Sadie's Alyssa!  

Monday in the afternoon we had interviews with president Bruce. While others were being interviewed I got to talk to sister Bruce and get to know her a little bit better. They are so nice and the interview went really well. He was able to give me some great advice and counsel that really helped me. Later that day we went and did a family home evening with a less active family. I talked to them about the importance of keeping the commandments and that we will receive many blessings for the things we do to follow the Lord. In 2nd Nephi 4 Lehi blesses his posterity and I explained to them that they being the seed of Lehi still have a right to receive these blessings. It went really well and then they fed us some food afterwards. We had a classic Chilean meal. Bread, butter, soda and they had a little dessert cake thing. It is pretty sad what these people live in. Occasionally there are some who live in some nice places but it is a completely different world down here. There are bugs everywhere in some peoples houses. the lady where we used to eat lunch at had cockroaches who would roam around in her cupboards, mom I am certain that you would die down here. At first it made me sick but you get adjusted to this after a little while. 

The weather is starting to warm up a little bit more with time. I hardly ever wear my jacket anymore, only when it is windy. I have heard the summer is absolutely brutal here so I am just trying to prepare myself for the worst. We always joke here about how the culture here is very laid back. The dogs in the street are lazy  we joke about how the pigeons in the street are lazy too. There are dogs who just sit in the street all day long dogs will just be laying down and will bark at us sometimes but won't even move a muscle because they are so fat or are just tired. Haha stores here don't open till 10 or 11 in the morning usually and they close around 8 or 9. Today is some holiday and so everything is closed we are in a members house right now because all of the cibers are closed. There are a lot of holidays here. 

The work here is progressing really well. At times it is frustrating being a junior companion because we have so much potential with the ward and members but I have to follow my companion and his lead. We have the baptism of Leninka this Saturday. We pushed José's baptism back to the 27 so we can prepare him more. Currently we have 6 or so progressing investigators, yesterday we brought 7 investigators to church and 5 less actives. I broke my record of investigators at church. We are teaching this woman who is probably 55 or 60 who reminds me of Grandma Glenda. She is such a sweet lady, she said she was going to make me an apple pie for our next appointment so i was pretty stoked about that. We found a sweet apartment complex lot that we have been contacting lately and we have been finding some people who are ready. It reminds me of Jason when he said they'd go to the trailer parks, we are going to some of these old run down apartment places and are finding great people. We have plenty of work to do here in this area, and we have so many people to visit teach and that need to be baptized. We just do not have enough time. We are going to use the priests this week for divisions. 

So here is a funny story, the other day we were teaching a girl whose mom had been baptized when she was 8 and we found them the other day. But we were talking to them and then we invited them to church and they asked a question about wearing pants to church. They said that they had heard that Jesus said in the bible that you cant wear pants to church. Haha we have heard this odd rumor like 2 times now and assured them that if they just come to church that they will receive blessings. We explain that no where in the bible does it say this and that pants were invented like 40 years ago. Haha we taught an Evangelical lady one time in the church and she tried to convince us that our religion was wrong and that our church was bad because she has seen people walk into our church with jeans on and that Jesus said in the bible to not wear jeans to church. Haha absurd some of the things people come up with! 

Pdays are different for every companion. When i was with elder smith we usually played soccer or something every week but elder tymczyszyn said that president Bruce said not to have zone activities because then we are tired for the rest of the week?? Sometimes i don't know if that is true, but I have to follow his lead. Anyways our zone has activities like last week they went and played Frisbee on the beach but we didn't go because elder tym didn't want to. Transfers are this next week. Crazy to think another transfer has come and gone so quickly. I want to stay in this sector because I love this ward, but at the same point I would love to start a new sector and with a new companion. Who knows what will happen I will most likely stay here. Anyways I hope that you are all doing very well. I am growing a deeper love for the people here in Chile as time continues and I love waking up every morning knowing that I have a message that can change someones live forever, and that we get to do it everyday. 


Elder Newman
Hello Family! 

What a wonderful weekend it was with general conference!! Wow what an incredible conference! Every talk was absolutely incredible! This was probably the best session of conference I have ever watched! Maybe its just cause I´m in the mission field but it was absolutely incredible! Missionaries at 18?? I knew this was coming! Would have loved it a year earlier but everything has its time and season! Girls at 19 too? It was so sweet when president Monson was talking about it and then said these changes are taking place now effective immediately. I wonder how much this will increase the numbers of the mission. Chileans have been able to leave at 18 for the last 6-9 months and so Chile was one of the places where 18 year olds where tested. Crazy, with time i could be training an 18 year old young in. Haha crazzyy!!  Like you said mom there were so many wonderful talks about true discipleship and following the savior. Elder Bednars talk was incredible about conversion vs. testimony. Elder Nelsons about ask the missionaries! Ha! I loved that! There were so many wonderful messages and it truly was a wonderful conference! The sessions went by so fast! 

These last 2 days have felt like a half day! I hope you all enjoyed yourselves up in Utah! No i did not feel the earthquake last night. Haha I probably slept through it. There have been many times when elders have come in and out of our pension during the middle of the night and I have just completely slept through everything. The other thing is that our pension is right on the coast so we don't really feel stuff where we are at. Haha kinda scary huh. We are definitely in the danger zone as far as tsunami. I´ll try not to scare ya mom!!! The flees are gone from my bed I think. My bites have been disappearing so that is good. I probably need to up my consumption of protein, fruit and vegetables. All they eat here is bread, avocados, soup, churassco which is like a fatty steak that is transparently thin, and some lettuce with lemon sauce on it. Ha ha i need to eat some more bananas and fruits too. 

This week was not quite what we hoped for but we are still pursuing forward. Last Monday night we went to a family home evening with some less actives we are working with and a investigator. The lesson was based of the movie only a stone cutter about John Moyle. I got excited as I told the people there that he lived in my hometown beautiful Alpine Utah. They were all excited. The following day I decided to implement a technique that the bishop had taught our ward. He said that a stake president had taught him to carry a pencil and paper with him wherever he went and when he recognized a prompting of the spirit to write it down and then at the end of each day he could look back and remember how the spirit had guided him that day.

Something that I have noticed lately is how the spirit has been guiding me to talk to certain people. Walking down the street we contacted a lady and she seemed like a potential investigator but while we were talking I felt prompted to ask her for a reference if she knew anyone that could use our message. She talked about her mom and we wrote it down. Last night we taught the mom after the last session of conference and the lesson went really well. At first when we went to contact her she seemed a little hesitant but then the spirit guided me to continue talking and with persuasion and the spirit she decided to let us in. I felt the spirit as I told her about in reality how our message is centered on Jesus Christ and his gospel and how it could help her life. I believe the spirit bore witness to her as i talked to her and then she decided to let us in. We then taught her about the Restoration and she was pretty knowledgeable about the bible compared to most Chileans. Most Chileans say they know about the bible but in reality they know little or nothing. Another example of this was thursday I was on Splits with Elder Spolemann our district leader. As we were walking down the street a man passed us and i just kind of felt my mind/body just stop and i felt talk to that man. I went back and began talking to him. He said that lately he had been reading in the bible and had been thinking about religion and Joseph smith and other religions had come across his mind. He said that he was wondering about the truth. He has a family who lives in a city next to ours but he is moving to Iquique in January. He said he would love to have the missionaries come by. Coincidence?! I think not haha! It really is an incredible feeling though to have the spirit direct you to certain people and to learn of their personal interest in the gospel. 

Mary our recent convert is incredible. She is doing so great! She went visiting teaching last week with a member in the ward and went around and visited less actives! She told me that her son in Bolivia is going to get baptized in December and that her daughter is still taking the lessons. What joy it brings me to see lives changes and families unite in the gospel! Leninka her friend is ready to be baptized. We have taught her all of the lessons and I am just helping her build a solid testimony on the Book of Mormon. I know that if i can keep my investigators and converts solid on the book of Mormon and converted unto its teachings or unto the savior as demonstrated yesterday by Elder Bednar they will never fall away. Alma 23:6. 

We have two baptismal dates for the 20th of October. Leninka and José. José is the husband of the less active. We are really trying to help his progress and prepare for his baptism. This last week we saw him with his cousin as he went to the supermarket and had a cigarette in his mouth. We were pretty bummed but this week we are going to give him a little palito charla franca haha.  

Last night we met with the ward mission leader and created some plans for this ward. We are going to go with the youth on divisions/exchanges probably 2 times a week. We want to prepare these priests for missions and we also have so much work to do in this sector that we don't have enough time to cover everything. We have been praying and fasting for this sector so that we can find those who are prepared to receive and hear our message. We have faith that this week we will find great investigators to teach. 

Conference was absolutely incredible! I loved it so much! We had a gringo room with all of the Americans where we were able to watch it in English! Oh how blessed it was to hear that beautiful language with the Mormon tabernacle choir! Conference seemed to absolutely fly by! It was incredible! Elder Hollands talk! WOW. So powerful! I hope you all enjoyed your wonderful conference weekend! I love being a missionary! I love sharing this message with people! I love this work! There is so much to learn and apply as we strive more to be like our savior Jesus Christ. I know he lives. As we strive to become more converted to the gospel we will fill that heavenly father is pleased with our lives. I hope that you are all well. Keep up the great work.The field is white and ready to harvest! If ye have desires to serve then ye are called to the work! There is a work that each of us can do, no matter what calling we hold. As we seek the guidance of the spirit, we can help our Father in Heavens Children wherever we may be. Pray for opportunities to serve those around us, to lift one anothers burdens and to know what we can do to help build the kingdom of God here on earth. 

Much Love, 

Elder Newman

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Hello Family!!!  Here´s how my week went! 

Monday night we got on the bus at about 5 pm and then headed back to Iquique. We were on the second floor of the bus on the front row! Haha it was crazy because there are these big windows and it felt like we were going on a roller coaster or something. As we drove I was just amazed about how there is absolutely nothing out here. Nothing but mountains of dirt and sand. I thought about the people who first colonized this place and I cant imagine what their first thoughts were. I like to joke about this being the desolation referred to in the Book of Mormon.
I arrived back to Iquique at 9 pm and then headed back to the apartment.

Tuesday morning we went to district meeting and then the zone leaders had talked about presidents goal for our zone. As a zone we had set the goal to baptize 12 but then president told the zone leaders that he wanted them to baptize 13. We had 2 baptismal dates planned for this Saturday but we needed to find someone else.  We had thought about the kids Benjamin and Jeremy that we have been working with. We said it could be possible to baptize them but we needed more time to teach and prepare them. The next day as a zone we were going to fast to see what we could do to reach this goal of baptisms. After that we went to a cita with hermano flores. He is the man that is going to baptize his daughter Javiera. The girl that we have been working with. He had received his interview from the bishop and had been cleared to baptize his daughter. He said that he is having struggles with his wife because his wife does not believe in the church anymore but his life is much better. Later that day we met up with Elder Zufelt a zone leader and he wanted to come with us to visit these two potential baptisms here in our sector. So we went with him to go visit Benjamin and Jeremy and he talked with them. After the lesson with Elder Zufelt he said that if we could finish teaching the lessons with them by the end of the week that we could baptize them. We finished the night with teaching Javiera her last lesson about tithing and then the family fed us hamburgers! Haha the mom wanted to make me something american and so they had made us hamburgers. It was nothing like home but it was still good!

Wednesday was our word of wisdom day. We went to go teach our Bolivian friend Leninka about the word of wisdom. She knew that this lesson was coming and she has had a problem with cigarettes. But her friend Mary (who we baptized the week before) is a great support to her. She said that she would stop smoking and that she would live the word of wisdom. She gave us her box of cigarettes and then we left it at that. It is incredible how the Lord blesses people when they really strive to follow him. To have been smoking for years and then as she tries to live the gospel she is able to just drop it like that with the help of the Lord. To finish that night we went to teach our other baptismal date Carlos. He was going to be baptized that Saturday and we reviewed the baptismal questions with him. We determined that he was struggling with the Word of Wisdom and with drinking tea. We retaught and reemphasized the importance of this divine law and then he took us to his kitchen and gave us all of his black tea. We left with two big boxes of tea and a box of cigarettes that night. We had great success that day with helping people leave their addictions and follow the Lord. To bury their weapons of war like in Alma 24 and to follow the Lord, make a covenant and never return. 

Thursday the district leader came with me in our sector to go complete the baptismal interviews for Javiera and Carlos. They both passed and were set to be baptized that coming Saturday. 

Friday was incredible we went to teach an investigator who is the mother of a less active. She accepted our message very well and then we invited her to pray. When we had come back the next day to visit her she had received her answer that it was true! I love having the confidence in our message and absolute knowledge that if someone prays to God to ask if our message is true and if they ask with faith in Christ, real intent, they will receive an answer!

Later that night we went to go work with a less active family. The wife has been a member for most of her life and the husband is not a member. They have a 4 year old son and live in a small apartment. They are in their late 20's and their names are Andrea & Jose. We have been working with Andrea and she has been coming back to church and the husband has started to come too. The husband has met different sets of missionaries for the last 8 years!! We had taught him a lesson about 2 weeks ago and then lately we have been focusing to get him to pray and actually ask. Friday when we talked to him he said that he had prayed and felt the presence of God a feeling in his heart. We were amazed! Incredible! He has been meeting with missionaries for 8 years and now he finally receives his answer! It is incredible how time and other experiences can prepare people to receive certain answers and things to their questions. So we ended up setting a baptismal date with him for the 20th of October and the family is super excited. 

Saturday was a bummer. We get a call from one of the youth telling us that Javiera had talked to him on facebook saying that she was not getting baptized anymore. We were so confused. We go over to the house to see what the deal is and we go to talk to the mom and she is not good. The mom is just crying and we try to figure out the situation. Basically she is convinced the church isn't true and that she is not going to let her daughter get baptized into a church that she "knows isn't true". It was a bad situation, later the little daughter came in and was screaming and crying and then the dad came up to try to help the situation and it was a disaster.  Later when we went to go pick up Benjamin and Jeremy for their baptism their mom  said that the kids needed more time. So we went from baptizing 4 to baptizing 1 in a matter of 6 hours. It was really a bummer and we were pretty bummed that we had lost these 3 souls. However we baptized Carlos and it was a great service.  

Although that we lost these baptismal dates, we will work to get them back! There is so much work to do in this sector and not enough time do to it! We are going to work really hard to use the ward more to go on divisions and things with a few priests in the ward.

I know that my savior lives. In times of craziness and outright disasters he will always be there! When we struggle we just need to remember that in the end all will be okay! Be of Good Cheer he told his disciples. I love this work, it is so fun to see peoples lives change for the better! Have a great week! 


Elder Newman

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Hello family I hope you are all doing very well. Sounds like you all had a very busy week at home. This week was crazy! We are working super hard and there is never enough time to complete all of the work that we need to. I am writing in Arica right now. This morning at 1:00 am we got on a bus and now I am in Arica! This morning we had to take care of stuff for our visa. We got here at 6:30 and waited in this line and finished up about 4 hours later. We head back down to Iquique around 5 this afternoon. Here´s a run through of our week. 

Monday night we spent talking with the bishop. We talked a lot about the plans for this ward and how we can strengthen it to be stronger for the baptisms that we are bringing in. We talked a bit about what we needed to do and how we need follow up. We have a great mission plan that our ward has structured but no one follows through. So I talked to the bishop about how we need to have some sort of follow up system that can help the people create habits to be better leaders. 

Tuesday was chile´s national independence day. I thought that everyone would be outside celebrating with their families but they were actually inside watching movies and things with their family.

Wednesday was some sort of military holiday and our ward had a big celebration. There was some music and lots of food that we ate. I ate way too much food. We spent time talking with ward members and with our investigators. 

Thursday the Assistants came in from Antofogasta. In our mission there are 6 assistants to the president. 2 of them travel throughout the whole mission and go on exchanges with the other missionaries, 2 are the office elders and 2 are hermanas. But the travelling assistants came to our sector to work with us for a day. I had Elder Kennedy with me and we worked together for the rest of Thursday.

We went to teach Mary and leninka later that night and while Elder Kennedy was with me we thought it would me much more effective if he could interview Mary for her baptismal interview. While he was doing the interview I began teaching Leninka. We were talking and she said that she had received an answer to her prayer and that she knew that she needed to be baptized. She then started to recognize the guilt from some of her past sins and it scared her a little bit. I helped her recognize that baptism is important for this reason. I was able to set a baptismal date with her for the 8th of October. She talked to me about how she feels that the events in her life have lead her to this point. That she didn't really know why she came to Iquique in the long run, and then i began to testify to her that it was because of this reason. To receive the gospel. Mary passed her interview and was cleared for baptism.

The end of the night I went with elder kennedy and he reviewed the day with me. He gave me some great comments and then some suggestions on how I could improve. He talked about how President has a lot of trust in our group of missionaries that came in together. He said that he thinks we have potential to be the greatest group he´s had. Ha ha it scared me a little bit that we have big expectations.

Saturday was an absolutely crazy day but it finished out great. Most of the day was spent preparing for Mary´s baptism. At lunch that day I had probably the weirdest food I have had in Chile. Fried Cauliflower. It was very weird. Many people came to Mary´s baptism and here is a crazy story. Right before the baptismal service I asked Mary what her complete name was. She said Mary Moreno Valdez. So when we went to do the baptism I baptized her in that name. After I had baptized her I turned on the drain so it could drain while we finishing the program. After the program  I went to check if the font was draining and it wasn´t I was confused because it always works and I was wondering what the problem was but i left it and then we went with Mary to fill out the baptismal record because we didn't have time to fill it out before the service. As i begin to fill out the form she tells me her full complete name is Lucy Marixlo Moreno Valdez. I was in shock. I asked her why didn´t she tell me her full name earlier and she said she thought Mary was easier. Ha ha I was like ohhh great now what are we going to do. We talked to the 2nd counselor and decided that we needed to baptize her again. Here is the great blessing. The font had not drained. This was why the drain wasn´t working, because we needed to baptize her again. As soon as we discovered that her name was different I went to flip on the drain switch and it started to work. If the font had drained we would have had to wait to re do her baptism and it would have just created a huge mess. It was a miracle. I baptized her again and that time is was right.

Sunday was a great day as well. We had 5 investigators with 7 less actives. At church I was talking to Mary about her 2 kids in Bolivia. She had said that when she had felt that she needed to be baptized that she told her kids about the church. And now both of her 2 kids in Bolivia are now meeting with the missionaries. I was so happy and so excited. It is crazy how one little thought to go to a different street over a month ago has lead to all of this. This work is great. It is so amazing to see the change this gospel can have in the lives of people. It is incredible to see the light in people grow brighter. I know this church is true. I know that our savior died and atoned for our sins. I hope you all have a great week. Love you all. 

Elder Newman

Monday, September 17, 2012

Hola Familia! ¿Qué Tal?

This week was crazy and ended up finishing fantastic! So Monday after email and everything I took Elder Smith to the terminal where all of the buses come. It was really weird and it didn´t really hit me that he had left until he had actually gotten on the bus. We had the bishop and some of our investigators and ward people come to the terminal to say goodbye and then he left on the big double decker bus! After that I spent the rest of the day with the zone leaders. The rest of the night we spent the time dropping off elders at their pensions (apartments) and helped them getting their luggage and things. It was actually pretty crazy we were driving all over iquique. Our pension is the closest to the tur bus terminal so when elders need to come and go places they always come stay at our pension. We had to get up that Monday morning early at like 1:30 am to go take a elder to the terminal because he had to go pick up his new companion in antofa. But the next morning I just spent with the zone leaders. And then we got news that my companion had arrived. We went to the terminal and picked him up.

His name is elder tymczyszyn. He is from a town called Formosa in Argentina about 16 hours north of buenos aires right next to Paraguay. He speaks English surprisingly well. Not perfect but he can understand me. The grammar is not perfect but he communicates what he needs to. This is much better practice for me because I can speak more Spanish now and improve in those area. Also it is good that he is a native because he can correct my grammar and things. It is quite funny when he will ask how to saw a certain word in english and i struggle to remember the word or phrase. I can´t imagine how my english be by the end of my mission.

I was a bit nervous about this companionship but I am coming to love him more and more as the time goes on. He will be a great companion. Later that Tuesday we went and bought groceries and just helped him get settled and later we went and we taught a few lessons and introduced him to the sector. This week has been great and the work is really improving. The flores family who we have been working with is improving very much. The dad wants to baptize his daughter and this last week we were working with Javiera the daughter. Wednesday we had taught her about the gospel and then worked to commit her to baptism. We were able to set a baptismal date with her for the 29th of September. But we encouraged her to pray and ask if she needs to be baptized. She came to church yesterday with her dad and then last night we were with the family. As we were leaving Elder Tym (Im going to start saying elder tym because it is much easier) asked her if she had prayed. She said that she had and she said that in the church she felt really good and that she wants the holy ghost. Haha she is progressing very much and she has great desires to choose the right. She always follows through on her commitments to read and pray. We are very excited about her and the potential this family holds as we try to work them back to activation. 

Also this week we have been working Mary and Leninka. Mary is super solid for her baptismal date and we are going to baptize her this Saturday. Her friend Leninka who we had originally taught and found had come back from Bolivia and had wanted to continue receiving the lessons and be baptized. (this is the lady that we found that had talked about her sons death and how she only let us in because it was a special day). Leninka is also progressing much and she came to church yesterday as well. Yesterday at church we had 6 investigators and 5 less actives. We were very excited and are going to try and bring more this next week. We have 5 baptismal dates right now for September and will probably set 2 more this next week for the end of the transfer. Giovanni and Giovanna a couple we have been working with are also incredible. They are a reference from a family in our ward and are just so sweet. They have a 4 year old daughter who is so cute and reminds me of Alyssa when she was little but with brown hair. The wife giovanna has received an answer that everything is true and the husband giovanni felt like it was true but he said he received an answer that he needs to continue to read the book of mormon. We are very excited for the blessings that we are receiving in this sector. 

A little bit about my companion. Elder Tym is a convert to the church from 2 years ago. He had a very tough life before the mission with drugs and other things but found the missionaries and they changed his life forever. He knows the bible very well and is a great missionary. He studied history before he came on the mission and wants to be a historiador.. (cant remember the english word). But he wants to get his doctorate after the mission. He is 21 years old and turns 22 in November. He loves the Lord and the people. Something that he taught me these last few days is to love the people more. I have been striving to love the people but really didn´t know how. He said that there is a cliche between the latins and gringos through the mission. He said that the gringos are very concerned about time and looking at their watches and making things quick and precise while the latins just try to love the people. I was able to recognize this in myself. Haha I am very much this way about being precise but he has really taught me to just love the people more and relax.

We had a amazing experience last night as a companionship. After this special experience we had last night I know for a surety that our mission president is inspired. I know with all of my heart that the Lord is in charge. Elder Tym was sent to me and was prepared in ways to help me. He has a plan for everything and as we try to do our best everything will work out. I love my savior Jesus Christ so much. There have been parts of these last 3 months that have been the most challenging of my life, but I know the Lord is in charge. As time continues on I gain more and more reason to trust in Him. I love this gospel so much and am so happy that I have this opportunity to share it with the people of Chile. I hope you all had a wonderful week, I love you all so much. I love my savior Jesus Christ and I know he lives! I testify that this church is true. Keep pressing forward, and "try a little harder to be a little better"- President Gordon B. Hinckley

Con Amor, 

Elder Newman
September 10, 2012

Hey Family! 

Happy Birthday Dad and Keira last week!  Carter and Keira look so big in the pictures! Don´t let them forget about their favorite uncle Zach! They are growing up! Crazy! I can´t believe she is two years old! 

Hope that you are all having a great week. It is crazy to believe that my first transfer in the mission is already over! Crazy how fast time flies! I have been here for six weeks?! No way! Well the first news of the week is that Elder Smith is being transferred! He is going to Copiapo which is 16 hours south from here! He will be a zone leader down there. So I will be getting a new companion tonight. His name is like Elder Tysmsym or something like that. I have no idea how to pronounce it he is from Argentina. He has been in the mission since May i think. So hopefully all will go well with that! Elder Smith has been great but I am excited to begin this new chapter of my mission and learn more things! I have learned much about the missionary I want to be and how I am going to improve the work here in Iquique this next transfer.

This last week was great. Not as great as last week as far as numbers but personally i learned much about how to be a better disciple and representative of Jesus Christ. Monday night we taught a family who has been inactive for 10 years. The parents are both members but the daughters are not members. Their names is the Familia Flores. The dad used to be in a bishopbric and was a great guy but for reasons stopped attending. He eventually got into problems with drinking and smoking and eventually the daughter and wife and himself wanted to stop. He said that if the whole family went to church that next week then he would stop and since then he hasn't picked up either of the substances. So monday night we met with them and they fed us some food. If you want to know what some classic chilean food is like. Here are a few things. Get some good bread. Then you get palta (avocado) and then just spread some avocado on the bread and eat it! Interesting huh! Pretty tasty I eat avocado like a hound but the bread is fattening. They also have sandwiches with just ham and cheese. No mayo they love mayo on their salads and stuff, I have never understood this yet but haha salads usually consist of think lettuce, beets, carrots and occasionally a tomato. Anyways that´s a little of the food for ya! Haha but back to my week!

Tuesday we were walking to an appointment. This guy was approaching us and then hocked a loogie (spit) right at me and then started swearing and saying all sorts of crazy stuff at us. We just kept walking I tried to keep myself calm and then I thought about the Savior. I thought about how we are representatives of him, and how during his life he was spit at, beaten, and crucified for doing nothing but good. It helped me to remember who i represent and to always act with dignity

Later that day we taught our Investigator Mary about the chastity and the importance of the Book of Mormon. She is solid. She will be a great member of the church.

Wednesday we went on exchanges. The district leader came over with me into my zone. He told me that my spanish was really good so that was some good news. At times i get discouraged with myself because i want to be able to do so much more but the language at times holds me hostage to the work I can do. However that was good to hear and I hope to continue to progress. During my study on Wednesday I received an impression that I need to start memorizing all of the scirpture mastery. So that is what I have been spending some time doing in the streets while walking.

Thursday we had a full day planned and then every single one of our appointments fell through. I have been thinking a lot lately about how we can better solidify our citas (appointments) with our investigators to make sure that it actually goes through.

Friday we taught our youth investigators Benjamin and Jeremias and then we were able to get the signature of approval from their mom. They are excited about their baptism on the 29th and the mom is becoming more interested about baptism as we continue teaching the sons. Yesterday at church we were hoping for many of our investigators to come. Yet 2 of our baptismal dates fell. Omar and Javier did not show up to church. We had called Javier to remind him that morning and he relapsed the night before drinking and he felt awful that morning and couldn´t come to church. So that was a little bit of a bummer but we did get one new investigator there who we had set a baptismal date the day before so that was sawweet! His name is Carlos and he is an uncle of a member in our ward. He´s like 65 he wants to get baptized. He has already begun reading the book of Mormon and will come to church with his nephew every week. All in all we had 3 investigators at church and then 4 less actives.

This last week we found 17 new investigators. probably about 8 of them are interested in our message. But we are finding people to teach. This week with my new companion we are going to spend more time with our progressing investigators to solidify them and help them get a decent foundation while we prepare them for their baptism. This last week I have also really tried to always be happy! This week I have really strive to love the people and the country where I am serving even more. Some elders make it hard when they complain about how things wouldn´t be like this if we were in the states and blah blah blah but this week I just said forget this nonsense about comparing things to home! This is my home! This is my home for the next 21 months and I am going to love this place for every single second that I am here! Time is so precious and there are people who need our saving message about the Savior Jesus Christ and his Atonement. The need to know about the restoration of the gospel and that they can have full access to the power of the atonement of Jesus Christ! That is why I am here! I am excited for this next week and the potential it holds! We need to take advantage of every single day! Live life enjoying every single second! I love you all so much! I love this gospel! I am so grateful for the opportunity the Lord has given me to serve the people here in Chile. I love my savior Jesus Christ. Everyday I want to be more like him! As we exercise faith and rely on his atonement one day "when he shall appear we shall be like him, for we will shall see him as he is". Have a great week family! Keep the faith! Take advantage of everyday and love life to its fullest!

Elder Newman

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Hello Fam!

Hope all is well up in the Garden of Eden. Haha, we are doing very well here down in Iquique!

Tuesday night was awesome! We went and taught the Carolina lady and her friend Mary. We taught them the restoration again and answer their questions. We were able to set Baptismal dates with them for the 22nd of September! We were very excited about that and then after that we went and taught Gonzalo our recent convert about the priesthood. It is incredible to see the change in some people and how much more light they have. After that I went straight to bed because I had to leave at 2 am to Antofagasta for a newbies conference!

I had an 8 hour bus ride to Antofagasta. Oh man ha ha the buses are nice but it is a long time on a bus especially when we just recently had the zone conference too. ha ha its a charter bus with two levels. they are crazy but the second level is so hottt. I sweat like a crazy dog and just die! We got to Antofagasta around 10 am and then went to the institute building to wait for president and sister Bruce. Once there we had talked about the vision of the mission and things we would need to accomplish.

President Bruce spent the whole day nailing it into us that we need to baptize. Baptize baptize baptize. We are called to baptize. Ha ha he said if there is one word I want you to remember from this conference it is baptize. He gave us lots of great advice and counsel. We had PowerPoint all day and then had some lunch. We had some empanadas they were really good.

After that we had a few more things from president and then we went back on the bus stop and took the 8 hour trip back to Iquique. Elder Smith was on exchanges with other elders in the zone while i was in Antofa. I got back that night at about 12:30 am and I was just exhausted. But i was ready to do work and was ready to go baptize. I talked to elder smith about my desires and what president said and we were really excited about the plans we had to baptize. 

Thursday we taught Mary and we taught her the Word of Wisdom. She gave up her cigarettes to us and we took the box and then threw them away of course hahaha. Friday we worked our tails off and the Lord blessed us much. We were doing contacting and found a man named Omar. He has 3 kids but we taught him the restoration. He had never really had a specific religion in his life because he never felt like any of them were the true church but he would read the bible for direction. After we taught him that lesson we set a baptismal date with him for the 22nd of September as well. After that we taught this guy named Javier who elder smith found the day i was in antofa. Javier wants to quit smoking and drinking and so he knew we could help him change his life.

We taught him  and then after set a baptismal date with him for the 22nd as well. That night we found some great potential new investigators. They are from Arica but its a single mom and her three sons. One is 12 and his name is Benjamin and there is a little brother named Jeremias.

The next morning (Saturday) there was mutual for the ward and we taught the class. We invited Benjamin to come with us and so he came with us to mutual. He met some of the other youth and really had a good time. Later we went to go teach Omar but he wasn't there but we ended up teaching his mom with a member from our ward. The member is a return missionary so that is very helpful. That night we taught some less actives and gave the wife a blessing because she has been sick

Sunday morning we got up and then started calling our investigators about church. That is the hardest thing about Chile is getting our investigators to church.  However we had our members of the ward assigned and they helped us get our investigators to church. We had 6 investigators at church. We had Mary, Javier, Omar, and we brought Benjamin and his little brother Jeremias and they loved it. Carolina was out of town, but we had many there. The mom was out of town so we couldn't bring her to church.

After Church we ate with a member family in our ward. They made us some yummy Brazilian dish. After that we went and taught Omar and then his son and mom were there with us. Omar's wife left him and she is a drug addict. But we taught the 3 of them the Gospel of Jesus Christ. We were able set baptismal dates with the Grandma and son and they are being planned for the 29th! By the end of the week we had 6 baptismal dates! After that we went and taught a member and finished the night contacting. Elder smith asked me if we should just go back to the pension and start planning but I said no that we needed to endure to the end. The last door that we knocked we found two women who were very prepared to receive the gospel! We gave them a baptismal challenge and they both accepted it. It is often the most important that we endure to the end.

This week was incredibly successful and by the end of next week we look to have 10 investigators with baptismal dates. Hopefully everything will go well and that we can be able to keep these baptismal dates! This work is incredible! It is amazing how many of the Lords children are prepared to receive the gospel here in Chile! This gospel is true and there are many people who are waiting to receive it and to have access to the full blessings of the Atonement! Have such a great week family! Keep the faith and endure to the end! Love you all!

Elder Newman

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

We had a wonderful week this week with much success. This was probably one of the best weeks I have had in the mission! So thank you for your prayers and concern! Last week was tough but that just meant that this week could be better!

Monday last week after email I cut elder smiths hair with some clippers that I had bought and I will probably cut my own hair today! The funny part was that the numbers are a bit different here than in the states and so he said use a 5 and so we went for it and it took it way short haha it was bad but then we fixed it so that was a good learning experience! It was a great purchase at the zofri which is like this mall thing where you can get stuff for cheap.

Later that day we taught Gonzalo and prepared him more for his baptism. Tuesday we went to a less active family and showed a video from president Uchtdorf about true repentance and then talked about it with the family. The main guy Aaron said that he was so grateful for us because we come and teach with the spirit and he said that he wants to go to the temple to receive his endowments and so he is going to meet with the bishop. He has been at church the last 3 weeks so we are thinking that we have pretty much reactivated him. We are very excited and eventually we will teach and baptize his daughter and wife.

Wednesday we found some amazing investigators. We had a feeling that we again needed to go back up to 18 de septiembre a street in our sector and so we went. We started contacting doors and within 3 doors we found a woman named Gabriella. She said that she had been baptized in the Evangelical church when she was younger but she wouldn't let anyone try and put their hands on her head for the holy ghost because she believed that no one had the authority to do so. We then testified that we had the authority and that she would need to be baptized again and then we said a prayer with her. After the prayer and we had finished she went on with her own prayer and thanked God for sending us to her door. She was very happy and we set a return appointment to go teach her the restoration. It was great. Later that day we were contacting doors again and we finished a street and Elder Smith asked what we should do. Immediately I had a thought pop into my head that we needed to go visit a member named Katy whose work was close by. So we went and when we got there she had tears in her eyes and was having a rough time. We tried to comfort her and then I left her a Mormon message and then we left. It is incredible how the spirit leads us! The Lord is aware of each of us and our needs and has a plan for each of us.

Thursday was good not a lot happened except there was a Tsunami practice drill haha that was crazy.

Friday morning at 2 am we got up to get ready for our Zone Conference up in Arica! Our bust left at 4 am and then we had a 4 hour bus ride up to Arica. Once we got there we walked to a stake center and then waited for President and Sister Bruce to get there with the Assistants. It was so fun to see all of my good buddies from the MTC like Elder Mccusker and Congleton and Van pelt.  President Bruce got up and promised us that our questions would be answered that day and they definitely were. President and Sister Bruce are incredible. Sister Bruce talked about the importance of planning and how we always need to be better planners. She gave us ways that we can be better planners and then talked about how we are going to be better. It was absolutely perfect because Elder Smith and I the day before were talking about how we needed to improve our planning even more.

Then President spoke and talked about how every week of his life since his mission on Saturday mornings at 5:30 am he has planned out his week. He talked about how planning is one of the things we have to do become successful. Later he talked about the comparison of Ammon and Aaron how they were both very successful but their success came at different times. He talked about many other things and also talked about how those who are born into the covenant have the right to have a testimony compared to someone who didn´t know the church. But those of us who are born into the covenant still doubt and have fears and so we still have to pray, fast, study the scriptures like in Alma 17:2. 

We took a break and then ate lunch. We had some good tacos type food with some brownies. Mmmmm they were good. We got pictures with our zone and president and sister Bruce after that and then we finsihed up with some workshops. There were 3. First we talked more about planning and sister Bruce created a form for the mission to help make our planning more effective. And the other two were about these new forms that the church created. They are forms that are used in ward council with the missionaries and bishop to help recent converts and less actives take things step by step until they get to the temple. It is amazing we were so stoked about them! We have already begun implementing them into our sector. After that we finished with Presidents final remarks and then finished up. I met Emily´s friend from Riverton he is super nice and a good kid. After the zone conference we had a few hours to relax in Arica becuase our bus didn't leave till 7. So we went to the centro and there was a McDonald's! It was unreal! So i got two ice creams and ate them both and they were actually surprisingly good.

Eventually we got back on the bus and took the 4 hour bus ride back to Iquique. During the ride Elder Smith and I planned more and then I read. We got back to Iquique around 12:30 and went straight to bed. We were exhausted. 

Saturday we got up and went to the church to fill up the font for Gonzalo´s baptism. During the day we taught lessons where we could and prepared for the baptism. The baptism was super great! Gonzalo was prepared and his daughters came up from Antofagasta for the service. One of them bore her testimony and she did a wonderful job. I´ll attach pictures of Gonzalo. Sunday morning we went to church and had our less actives there and then Gonzalo and 3 other investigators. We were super excited. Gonzalo was confirmed and he is going to be a great member of our ward. There is this new family from Bolivia who has like 10 people in their family so we are going to stop by their place this week. Later that day we had to go on splits with some of the young men in the ward because Elder Smith and I had so much to do. I was at ward council while he was with a member teaching and giving a blessing. Later we taught a Family Home Evening lesson. We taught about the importance of missionary work and they absolutely loved it. We had about 30 people show up and many shared experiences including Gonzalo! Gonzalo came and we didn't even tell him about it so that was very exciting. We had people come up and grab pass along cards and phamplets and there was actually a non member there who came with a friend and then one of the members started teaching her directly after. It was great.

Our ward has grown so much since we have been here and we are excited for the work that is happening here in Lynch in Iquique. Hope you all are having a great week. This week I have learned much and am grateful for the blessings that I have been given. I love this gospel and the work that I have been given the opportunity to do! The work is starting to really get rolling now that we have got our feet on the ground. Have such a great week! I love you all! I know our Savior Lives.

Elder Newman