August 11, 2012

Semana de Milagrones, August 11, 2012

Hey family! Yes, I did get the package. Thank you for the SOCKS más
que nada. ohhhh so good and very needed. I´m also enjoying the
dulces and the camels!

This was the week of Miracles. I don´t even know where to start.

Sunday: After church, we had a little bit of time after church and
before lunch, so we did 3 contacts and went to visit a
not-so-progressing investigator, and he really opened up to us and
asked us what we think he can do to kind of get out of this rut he´s
in. 3 contacts and a bomb lesson all before lunch! That very rarely
happens. Then after lunch, I checked the mission email, and President
King had gotten an emergency reference from another mission president.
President King forwarded me the reference and said, "Will you please
follow up on this and see if you can get in touch with this sister.
Maybe you and your companion could take the truck and go perform this
act of love." So we called the sister, got the address of where her
dad was, and off we were to Peñaflor, in the country. The old man was
stuck in bed and was physically deteriorating. He had left the
hospital a long while ago --like a year-- because they could do
nothing more for him there. So, Abraham was just laying in bed all
day every day, waiting to pass away. What a sad situation. and the
worst part, he was in denial and had not accepted his sickness. That
just made him more frustrated and impatient, even though his mind had
reverted back to the stage of a young child-- 7 years old, I think is
what his caregiver said. So we gave him a priesthood blessing by
request of his Member- daughter. We talked with the caregiver a
while, sang some hymns, and prayed with them. I don´t know if went
there for him, or his caregiver, or for us, but I was definitely
edified. I was reminded yet again of the great plan of happiness, my
gratitude for my knowledge of it was strengthened. The sister wants
the missionaries in the sector to keep passing by, too. Act of love
successfully performed.
Monday: Busy, busy office, and we only had time to go out and have a
previously planned Family night with a recent convert, Aldo, and his
family. Then we had to go back to the office to finish up-- stuff
needed for tuesday morning. But we shared the Plan of Salvation with
Elder Wharton´s little pictures, and Aldo had a good, necessary
review. We also found out that he changed jobs last week. He´s now
working as a security guard at the Area Office/ Temple! How cool is
that? On the way back to the office, we passed by Nilo´s family (the
man that died last week). They wanted us to come in so bad, but we
couldn´t because there wasn´t a man there. So we talked a little bit
with Jesica, Nilo´s daughter; Elsa, his wife; and Camila, Jesica´s
daughter. We were talking a bit, trying to help them while not being
able to go in, and there were some wonderful teaching opportunities.
Jesica told us that she had actually read from Nilo´s copy of the Book
of Mormon. "No entendí mucho, pero me sentí muy bien." What a
wonderful opportunity to let her know that those feelings were from
the Spirit, telling her that what she was reading was true. As we
left, Camila, who was sitting in the back the whole time, stood up to
come shake our hands, which in that situation was a great sign of

Back at the office while Elder Wharton was doing the stuff
he needed to do for Tuesday Morning, I starting making a hard core
Excel sheet with all the missionaries and the status of their visas
and when we need to start applying and when it expires and when they
can go get it, and if we´ve paid or not, etc. For all 180+
missionaries. The new area office (oh yeah, no hay Área Chile. Ahora
somos Sudamérica Sur) is asking for a little bit more detailed reports
with the visas, so I had to embark on this new project of recording
all this stuff. It´s a pretty amazing spreadsheet, I have to say.
I´m actually thankful I tood the Excel class at BYU. I am actually
using some of the things I learned.

Tuesday: Tuesdays and Wednesdays the Zones in the mission have their
weekly meetings. And Elder Wharton is in charge of pedidos and
delivering the mission mail/packages/ cualquier cosa to all the
missionaries. Hence, now that I´m his companion, I get to go with him
and do a little mission tour every week. Tuesday morning we went to
San Antonio on the coast! I took pictures and thought of you, Dad.
Very very hilly. But pretty neat. I talked about Tuesday on a
recording I´ll send to you.

Basically as a brief overview, we helped move some missionaries to another pension, and as we were driving
back, Elder Wharton and kind of realized together just how blessed we
are. You´d expect that the office missionaries might get out about
half the time that normal missionaries do, and so the numbers would be
about half of other missionaries. We get out in our sector qutie a
bit less than half the time as normal missionaries, but the Lord
definitely blesses us in our sector. Somehow, when we really only get
out to work when it´s dark out, we´re able to contact and find
families to teach, and have lessons, and just all around be really
blessed. So we left to go to a cita, and no one was there. We were
there for a reason, so we decided to knock the doors around it. First
few, not so good contacts.... but then there was this guy that has a
Mormon friend and has seen the Book of Mormon, believes in prayer and
that God answers prayer. And he actually told us that he believes
that if he prays about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon, then
God will answer his prayer if it´s actually true. YES.

Then we
remember that there was this sister in the ward that really wanted to
go out and work with us this week, so we call her, and she´s like,
"Thursday, we´re going to work. starting at 4:00. And if you don´t
have citas, I have some friends we can visit." AWESOME. Then we were
walking home, talking about how the Lord just blesses us, and this guy
stops us and asks us where the closest chapel is, because he´s a
member and has been inactive for a few years, and wants to go back to
living the gospel. YES! So we´re like, for example, that guy. The
Lord blesses us and puts people in our path. So then we walk past
this one guy, and Elder Wharton turns around and starts talking to him
while he´s waiting for a bus. Turns out, he´s an inactive member,
too!!!!! And he´s been inactive for like 4-5 months because he doesn´t
like his Bishop (see Elder Hallstrom´s talk from last conference).
But we got his address sent it to the missionaries in the south, where
he lives. And then we got home, And that was Tuesday.

Wednesday: another pouch run. lots of office stuff, Then we were
going to another previously planned family night with the Pereira
Family, and they weren´t there. Again, the Lord directs us and knows
what´s going on. So we decide to do a few contacts before going
somewhere else. And we contact this joven named Cesar, and he told us
to come back the next day, Thursday. That´s about it for Wednesday.
Thursday: I´m going to record this one, because the day was literally
just one giant miracle. Good lunch, leave with Karim (leaving for his
mission this wednesday) and Valeria, a YSA sister in the ward. We
work with them for FIVE HOURS. they take us to some old investigators
they knew of, so we got actual useful information about the sector.
One of those old investigators, we got in and taught and shared
basically lesson 1. And Karim and Valeria just taught and testified
and used scriptures and asked questions and were simply MAQUINAS.
Then we got into Cesar´s house with his family-- AWESOME lesson, and
hopefully they come to church this Sunday. They had actually talked
to the missionaries a few months ago. The Lord made that whole lesson
possible when the plans fell through on Wednesday night. Then we went
over to Jesica, Elsa, and Camila, and Karim and Valeria just took out
the trash and it was a wonderful lesson. Day FULL of miracles. 3
lessons accompanied by memebers, 6 news.

Friday: again lots and lots of office stuff, people to go get their
visas, some complications, going to gov´t agency buildings for other
reasons, etc. We didn´t even get out into the sector.
and here we are, today, Saturday.

I stand all amazed at the love the Lord offers each one of us, and I
stand all amazed at the loving and merciful hand of the Lord here in
Maipú in His work.

Until next week,
Elder Cole Moffat

August 9, 2012

First week of Changes!, August 4, 2012

Hi there!  and yes, the first week of Changes is ALWAYS a little nuts.

I sent a few recordings to the fam and so I´ll write just a little bit here.  sorry.  But time is also running a bit short.  and Family, listen to the recordings before reading this.  it´s better.

Well, this week was changes, and it´s a bit nuts.  Elder Gimenez left the office (after 5 changes here!) and is now a district leader in Los Cerrillos.  My companion is now Elder Wharton, who was here in the office last change.  He´s from Texas, outside of Austin in a little town called Buda (apparently pronounced bee-oo´-duh), and knows what salt lick is.   He´s a really cool guy and just a solid missionary.  He goes home in January.  I´m excited to be with him. And also, this change, it´s Elder Wheelwright´s turn to train his replacement, who is.... drumroll.... elder Morgan!!  You probably don´t remember, and that´s okay, but Elder Morgan was with me for 3 changes over in San Miguel.  He was in a neighboring sector, in the same district with us, was comps with a district leader, and in the same pension as the Zone leaders.  So I was with him a lot.  We did a few divisions together, and I also slept in his pension even more times.  We became good buds.  And now he´s in the office with us!  and he´ll be my comp next change!!  yeahhh.  this is going to be good.

Also, we got 13 new missionaries!  Elder Jones, who was in the MTC with me, is training!!! It´s weird to think that we´re far enough into the mission to be training other missionaries.  too fast.  And I went to president´s house Tuesday and Wednesday to do part of the training/orientation gig.  with some goooood food for lunch.  We have some super good missionaries that just got here, let me tell ya.  I feel like every group just gets better and better.

And today, we went to the feria again.  We kind of had to because it´s Elder Morgan´s first P-day here.  Deals of the day:
2 kilos of kiwi for 400 pesos.  translation: 4.4 pounds of kiwi for 80 cents.  that´s a lot of kiwi.
4 ties for 500 pesos.  translation: 4 ties for 1.00 american dolar.
6 apples for 500 pesos.  they are the fiji apples.  $1
6 bananas for 490 pesos.  98 cents.
We also had some miracle moments and big impactful moments in the few hours we were able to make it to the sector this week.  One, we got into a house (or rather, we knocked and immediately they opened the door, saw us, and said "C´mon in!") and they actually paid attention to us and were extremely respectful, and want us to pass by again... sometime... and it was just an amazing lesson.  and dad, yes, I used music skills.  we sang with them, and they liked it.  I´d like to use the hymbook more in lessons.  Also, we went to a viewing of a recent convert who died yesterday (Friday).  The viewing was in the living room of the appartment.  It was sad, but I felt unusually peaceful and calm.  We answered some questions about where he was right then, and it was amazing to be able to testify of that and help lift burdens of the family going through a hard time.  They also asked us to pray, and EVERYONE came in to listen to the prayer.  and they were all extremely respectful.  It was sad to see him in the casket, but I felt joy in knowing that he left his mortal body as a man who let the grace of Christ change his life.  He was baptized not 4 months ago, and loved reading the Book of Mormon and increasing his faith.  Apparently he was an alcoholic earlier, and completely turned his life around and honestly tried to be better every day.  We had shared with him the night before.  We talked about the vision of the tree of life.  And he testified to us of the importance of the Sacrament and the gift of the Holy Ghost.  He had trouble coming to church because of health reasons, and he made the extra effort to attend church last Sunday.  and He felt the difference in his life.  That´s a good way to go out.  We saw the family´s eyes light up as we told them of the reality of the Spirit World, or where he is now, and of the Resurrection, and especially of the fact that they can have the opportunity to see him and be with him again as resurrected people, together as a family.  We´ll go back and keep talking to them tomorrow or monday.  It was a joyous experience, seeing people react to hearing the truth.

I know it´s true, and I hope you all do too.  If you don´t, find out.  Pray and ask a willing, loving Father.  He will answer you.  That´s a promise of God.

I love you and pray for you.  Until next week.

Love, Elder Cole Moffat

Milagritos, July 28, 2012

Hey Family!  How is everyone?  It was nice to get all the updates about vacation and everything!  Also, thank Lauren Gui for her letter.  I´ll try and get back to her soon!

Soooo... updates from this week....  Not too much.  We´re just always really busy.  because it takes a lot to run a mission.  Lots.  OH!  At the end of ones mission, one writes a stewardship report, or  un Mayordomía.  Well, I had to revise all of them to make sure people didn´t put down just stupid things, correct grammar, etc.  Well, I am really grateful for the schooling in terms of English I had at Hawthorn Option, Junior High, and VHHS.  Definitely helps with Spanish, too.  And I can see that my written spanish is good enough now that I can gramtically revise/correct a Latin´s 4-page, single-spaced report of a two-year mission! I spent part of my week doing that.

But we did have some good lessons with investigators this week!  We taught the nonmember daughter of an inactive we´re working with.  The inactive lady wasn´t there, but the nonmenber, 35-year-old daughter was, and so we asked to share something with her, and she said yes.  We were really happy, but we didn´t realize the significance of it until later.  That family was passing through a really hard time these past few months, and so we were able to share with her a little bit about God and His love for her and their family and all that.  And the spirit was really strong.  Then, she said that this was 1) the first time she had actually sat down to talk with missionaries, even though they were always in the house, sharing with the family, and 2) the first time she had expressed to anyone some of the things she was feeling and going through.  It was a wonderful discussion.  Then last night we went back, and she was really happy to see us and wanted to start talking right away.  It was the kind of lesson that I just love to have, because it's not so much a lesson as it is a discussion.  Yes, there is a lot of teaching and learning going on, but we share, we ask questions, they express their thoughts and feelings openly, they realize they have a question and ask it, we help them find their own answer to their own question, they have a desire to learn more and take action, they commit themselves to do something, they learn, we help, the spirit teaches,  It's great.  I like those.  And we shared a bit about God's Plan and what it means for us and what we need to benefit from it, faith, and ACTION.  I feel like we're going to see even more miracles with her.

We also went to teach a recent convert, and his wife decided to stay in the room and listen.  And so we helped her understand a little more about the book of mormon, and really answer her questions.  At the end, she told us that she was in the other room, heard that we came in, and was going to stay there, but she felt something just push her into the room we were in with her husband, sit down, and listen.  and when we asked her how she felt after the closing prayer, she said, "Mi corazón se llenó con alegría!"  which means that her heart was filled with happiness.  That was a neat experience, too.

But, I´m going to check out now and get my haircut, maybe print some pictures, and then go out and invite others to come unto Christ.  YEAH.

love you all!

Elder Cole Moffat

God's Plan, July 21, 2012

Haha okay just as I started typing, Elder Merchán (AP in the office with us) was on the phone ordering pizza.  And we was like (in spanish) "Yes... Yes... The Church of Jesus Christ... It´s a big Church on Calle Alberto Llona.... the Chuch of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints..... oh, you´re a member?  Great!  Well, we´d like the 2 for 1 deal......"  haha it was just a funny moment ordering pizza.

we watched a movie last night-- "How rare a possession: Book of Mormon."  and it was really good.  this was our hometheater set up.  complete with space heater, speakers, and all.

Well, Hi family!  How is everyone?  How´s your vacation?  The text to email worked really well, mom!  pretty cool stuff.  Thanks for the letters!

Well, This week was interesting.  I already recorded like a half hour that I´ll send to you guys, And I´m trying to think about what more I can put on here in the letter.  But I´d say we had a pretty good week.  I´m learning a lot about the mission and the way it works.  Also, I am realizing the importance of study and pure, dedicated, hard work.

It´s interesting to see how the Lord Prepares his children to receive the Gospel-- or at least have the chance to receive the message of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and it´s restoration.  Also, I realize more every single day the simpleness and the locigal-ness of the gospel.  It just makes sense.  I love it.  If anyone really wants to understand it and prays and accepts the spirit and all that, they can learn, grow, apply, and become Perfect-- even like God is perfect-- and they can do it through Christ.  I love the miraculous simplicity of God´s plan!!  It´s amazing.  And really, it´s our plan: Authored by God, but accepted by each one of us.  I can say, because I accepted God´s plan for me, I became a co-investor or a partner in the plan.  Authored by God, accepted by me, our plan.  And everyone that ever lives on the earth did the exact same thing.  We just need to ask God to help us remember of its truthfulness!!  And if we do, with a open heart and willing mind, He will.  He will show us what we need to do, and we can go forward, having a perfect brightness of hope.  God is a God of hope. (Romans 15:13 I believe)

Well, I love you all!  I´ll try and send pictures!

Elder Cole Moffat

More Office Stuff, July 14, 2012

Hey Family!  Thanks for everything!! I got the letter from Val Dawson, and I got a little package from Familia Duran from Las Avenidas, with "Pathways to Perfection" by Thomas S. Monson (Leatherbound...) and a huatero-- Their little sack with grains that you stick in the microwave and heat up that I used when I hurt my anckle a few months ago.  They´re awesome.  and I also want to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY SPENCER!!!!!  you´re getting OLD!!!  And you are on vacation!!! I hope you´re having fun there!

It´s weird how all the days, and now the weeks, just blend all together.  My journal writing has also gotten pretty bad.  That´s what happens when you´re in the office and live in an apartment with 3 other missionaries.  I need to fix that.  Prontísimo.

So, I really don´t have a whole lot to write about from this week.  We just did some office stuff, tried to get out to the sector as much as possible, sent visa stuff out, etc.  But that was cool, I sent people to do their visa, and just gave them the instructions and told them to read every word, and they wouldn´t have problems.  And guess what?  They did it!  And they all did it right!!  I realized that God gives us his word through the scriptures and living prophets.  And that works much much better than if he personally came down to evry single person for every single problem they had.  Then they wouldn´t ever listen to leaders or prophets or scriptures, etc.  And if God didn´t tell them specifically and personally to do something, they wouldn´t do those good things.  THAT´s why he gives us living prophets with continual revelation-- To keep us humble, and to help us be the best we can be in every aspect of our lives.  God is Smart.

Also, we went to go have a family night with a certain family on Wednesday.  We were planning on sharing a few scriptures, having a good discussion, and ending the lesson with a 10-15 minute movie.  Well, we thought the DVD was in the office, and it wasn´t, then we went home and found the case with no DVD, then the same DVD but in English, and so we were like, oh darn.  What do we do?  Well we found another DVD that had a few movies on it, and we looked through and felt like we should share the 13 minute video about Martin Harris losing the 116 Pages.  It talks about trusting the Lord and doing His will even if it´s different than our will.  So as we were walking to their house (we were already a few minutes late) we were trying to think of what to share and talk about before the video and such.  We shared the Alma 37:37, which talks about Consulting or Counseling with the Lord in all things.  We talked a bit about that, then connected counseling with Him and trust in Him.  because it doesn´t do a whole lot of good to counsel with the Lord, get an answer, and then deny it and do what you wanted to in the first place.  And as we were talking, the recently active dad started remembering experiences he had had-- when he didn´t counsel with the Lord, when he counseled but didn´t trust him, etc.  And then when we got to the trust in the Lord and trust Him enough to follow what he says part, He was like, "Actually, I´m struggling to do that right now.  Tithing has always been a hard one for me, but just 3 or 4 days ago, I decided to just do it and trust in the Lord and everything will work out.  It´s what He wants.  It´s just really really hard."  So we were able to strengthen him, help him, and watch the movie on trusting God.  And we saw his face light up as he got the spiritual witness that what he had decided to do was right.  It was really cool.  We had a plan, but it fell through, and then the Spirit was able to guide us in the lesson and preparation to be able to really meet the needs of this family.  I´m pretty sure the spirit took and hid the other DVD, too (that´s a joke, by the way).

Well, those were some cool things that happened this week.  I also read the Fourth Missionary (Cuarto Misionero) by Elder Corbridge again.  Really really cool.  I would highly suggest to any person with their mission call that they read it.  very very good.  yep.

Until next week, I love you and miss you!

Elder Cole Moffat

Happy Family Reunion! and God Bless ´Mrkuh, July 7, 2012

Hey there in California!  I just learned I´m a little bit out of shape... I just played some soccer and it was tiring.  It´s cool how little 6 and 7 year olds play football here really well.  and score goals when playing with missionaries and old guys that aren´t going easy on them.

Funny stuff of this week (and stuff I forgot to say about last week).  Preached from the pulpit: Nephi was apparently 16 when he had the vision of the Tree of Life... I´m not sure where it says that, but some guy said it from the pulpit.  "And Nephi, a mere 16 year old young man, prayed to God with faith to see the same vision his father saw.  And God answered this young 16-year old´s prayer.  God loves his children, and will answer anyone´s prayers when they pray with faith."  Okay, so he was trying to teach a good principle-- God answers prayers-- he just made up some details... interesting.  Then in the chapel, this kid goes up to the pulpit during a talk, grabs one of the hymnbooks, and yells to his mom on the front row, "MOM!  These hymnbooks are HUGE!!! Look how big they are!!!!"  He was probably used to the little travel ones (that are incredibly convenient, btw) that everyone has here.  I actually really like mine.  I can take it anywhere.  It´s good to use in lessons sometimes.  We got shots this week, too because we had Zone conference, and its that time of year.  President and Sister King gave the shots, but don´t worry.  They practiced on eachother first.  President was just used to giving shots to horses.  I opted to have Sister King give me mine.  We had some medical advice in Priesthood last Sunday (going back to every Chilean thinks they´re a doctor), and apparently sausage causes alzheimers in youth... not quite sure about that one yet.

But we did have our Elders Quorum President organize divisions with us last Sunday, which is the first time that´s happened while I´ve been on my mission.  I was really really really happy that the members here are willing to go out with us and work.

Something that´s really good here in Chile that I like a lot is the emphasis on Ward Conference.  Back in our ward at home, ward conference was just another Sunday, and when we showed up and the stake president was there and we started sustaining people, then I realized it was ward conference.  Maybe I was just a clueless teenager.  But here, It´s a big deal.  For example, in Las Avenidas (end of May), we had our ward activity the week of to get some excitement going, then there were little souveneirs to take home from sacrament meeting, with a scripture verse that´s the theme or motto of the conference, and that theme/scripture lasts the entire next 12 months until the next ward conference.  Tomorrow, we have ward conference here in Maipú.  The scripture/theme of it is Alma 5:14- "And now behold, I ask of you, my brethren of the church, have ye spiritually been born of God?  Have ye received his image in your countenances?  Have ye experienced this mighty change in your hearts?"  The conference actually started Monday.  Monday night, everyone was supposed to have their family night with the lesson focusing on the first question "Have ye spiritually been born of God?"  We went to the Fernandez Family´s family night.  The Mom and Daughter are active because they want to be, a son and another daughter are activeish because their sister brings them, another daughter is not active, and neither is the dad, even though he used to have a stake calling in a different stake (sadly, that´s not too uncommon).  So that was an interesting family night, but it was a really good discussion, and everyone participated.  YAY!  Tuesday night was home teaching/visiting teaching night, when everyone was supposed to go do their visits, and invite people to the conference.  Wednesday we had a Ward Family Night in the chapel, with the lesson on the other 2 questions.  Standard Mormon time "starts at 8" but really started at 8:50, but there was actually more reverence during the lesson than in sacrament meeting.  And then kareoke!  There´s a member family that does events, and has some professional kareoke equipment.  that was entertaining, too :)  I don´t know if there was anything thursday... I think a ward leadership meeting.  Friday was ward temple night (and if you had to work during the "ward´s session" you were supposed to try and go to some other session that day).  Today was deep cleaning the chapel (Youth and priesthood I think), and Tomorrow is the conference.  I kind of like having Spirit Week before Ward Conference :)

Tuesday we went to the Zone Conference.  It was awesome.  We learned about "Seek Learning by Faith" (see Elder Bednar´s Article in the September 2007 Ensign-- Incredibly insightful  And now we have to 1) apply it to our lives by really acting and working in order to learn and gain experience, and 2) help members and investigators (primarily investigators) understand that while they can learn from what we teach them, that is not enough.  They won´t truly learn and interalize anything until they act, until they exercise faith and work to gain experience and LEARN.  that we as missionaries can´t do everything, that they need to get up and do things, too.

Yestderday, Friday, was full of things to tell.

First, I sent people downtown to do all their visa stuff-- my first time!  Well, I definitely learned things.  There are 2 pages of instructions that everyone got along with all the things they needed.  Well, there´s one part of the process that if they don´t do, or don´t do correctly, there can be a whole lot of time wasted and a lot of hassle in about 2 weeks.  If they do it right, I walk 3 blocks to go pick up their gov´t ID card in 2 weeks.  If they do it wrong, I have to go all the way downtown to do the same thing that could have been done 3 blocks away.  If they don´t do it at all, THEY have to go downtown (normally getting lost on the way), waste money and time, and do the same thing that could have been done 3 blocks away.  SO, before each person left, I pointed out that part and begged them to do it right.  2 out of 6 did it right.  2 did it wrong.  2 didn´t do it at all.  I highlighted it, I talked about it, I reminded them, and it was all written right there.  Elder Gimenez told me after that he´d learned to just give them the written instructions and not explain anything-- just tell them that it´s all written down, and if they follow everything that it says, they won´t have a problem.  and it goes perfectly every time.  Who would have thunk that the only thing that I would explain would literally be the only thing they mess up.  But, I learned a valuable lesson about the Lord.  He writes down scriptures.  He gives us prophets.  He sends the Holy Ghost.  He WANTS to help every single person.  And even after all that, people don´t use all the resources He´s given them.  On an extremely, extremely small scale, I experienced a small part of the sadness that God must feel for many of his children when they don´t value all the things He´s blessed them with.  Myself included.  In highschool, why did I not read the scriptures every day?  I sure needed their direction.  And they were always there available, I just didn´t use them.  Even this morning, I was just sitting during Personal Study and pondering, reflecting (which is good and beneficial), but I wasn´t going to read the Book of Mormon-- Just sit there and ponder.  Then I had the prompting to read the Book of Mormon, and I started to shrugg it off because I was really working through some things in my mind.  But I realized that God wants me to read the Book of Mormon, especially when the spirit prompts me to do it.  So I read Helaman 3-5 and felt almost physically nourished at the end of it.  Basically, It was a valuable lesson learned in the midst of a few small minutes of testing during visa runs.

Then that night, I learned just as much in a lesson as the people I was teaching learned.  I relearned the importance of the spirit in lessons-- and in life.  And now analyzing it, I applied the "learning by faith" principle from Zone Conference.  We went to a recent convert´s house, and his wife, Elsa, and 20-year old grandaughter, Camila, were there.  They aren´t members, but Elsa´s only obstacle is that she can´t get off work on Sundays.  Camila had heard the Elders before, but only when they happened to be teaching her Grandparents when she stopped by.  She lives in another part of Maipú.  We shared a bit, and then my wonderfully in-tune companion asked an inspired question-- What was something that called Camila´s attention when she´d met with the Elders before.  What she explained was how she felt the spirit, though she she did not yet know it was the spirit.  She talked of the peace that she felt as they conversed, and the calmness about them as they spoke.  As she finished explaining, Dad´s counsel popped in my head from a number of months ago-- "When the spirit is there, point it out to them!"  I had learned the idea from dad, but here I had yet another opportunity to really learn it by following the prompting I recieved, in faith.  I then was able to testify that what she had been feeling, and what she was feeling right then, was the Spirit.  And those good feelings that come from the spirit actually testify, not of the missionary as a person, but of the truthfulness of the message and teachings he was sharing.   She got it, and definitely felt the spirit.  It was a wonderful lesson. :)

WELL, that´s all, folks.  One more thing-- Could you comment on the spiritual experiences you´re having/ blessings you´ve seen in your life, missionary opportunities you´ve taken advantage of?  I´d really really like to hear about that kind of stuff.

Love ya, miss ya, pray for ya, all that jazz.
Elder Cole Moffat

Office, June 30, 2012

Hey there!  Thanks for the package!!!!  Definitely keeping the bag of chocolate chips here in the office.  Dad, don´t get grey hair.  But if you do, it´s okay.  Also, you´ll do great in hp.  In terms of teaching people who already know a lot, all you really have to do is direct the class, not necessarily impart knowledge that you have and they don´t.  You just have to direct the discussion, and ask questions that make people think.  You need to know and study the topic, but ask the right thought provoking questions and you´ll be fine.  Trust the Spirit.  He knows what to do even if you don´t.

Hot chocolate with mate.  ´Nuff said. :)

I drove this week!  First time driving in over 10 months.  And it was stickshift.  In a truck.  Downtown Santiago.  awww yeah.  And I didn´t crash!!  Good stuff.  I´ve already been downtown and to a lot of different parts of the city like 5 times in the past 2 weeks.  Going to the Registro Civil, the Embajada, the Dutch Embassy in Chile, you know, the usual.

In the office, there are lots of curveballs.  For example, there's this one elder that was born in Bolivia, has a Bolivian Passport, lived in Holland and speaks Dutch, lived in Spain, and then moved to Chile.  He's serving in our mission while waiting for his visa to get cleared to go to the Provo MTC, to serve the Dutch speaking mission in Holland.  And we're working through the final stages of that.  He finally has his itinerary, and we went downtown with him two days in a row.  He'll go back to pick up a paper next week before he flies out.  Another Elder's passport expired while he was on the mission.  Colombians have to have a special record, that they can't get in Chile because of legalities between the two countries, but they couldn't get it when they were in Colombia because it would have expired before we would be able to use it.  International Policy is interesting.  I don't want to ever work in it.

AND we also have to go out and work in the sector.  In a lesson, after reading 3 Nephi 11:1-18, we had an investigator tell us---and I paraphrase really only slightly-- "The Book of Mormon just has to be true.  It's entertaining!  I like reading it!  It's incredible how much I want to read it, especially because I normally don't like reading.  Also, it's spiritual and practical.  It's stupid that anyone would say some kid made it up.  That just doesn't make sense.  Just look at the names of people and places!  No kid could sit there and make this up!  It has to be true.  Also, why wouldn't Christ come visit his people in the Americas!  If they're children of God, God loves them, and it's totally possible that they had prophets too, and that Jesus visited them.  It just makes sense."  That was a cool moment.

We were in a lesson with members, and the three little girls started eating hotdogs that their mom gave them.  Then  the middle one, 2years old, started choking.  The mom ran over to help her, and took the hotdog out of her hands.  Well the little girl just got mad, and started crying that she didn't have her hotdog!  That made the choking worse, and then, while in the arms of a family friend, she started throwing up.  the family friend tried to catch it in his hands.  She started crying some more, which just made her gag and throw up a little bit more.  That whole ordeal was going on, then the dad from across the room goes, "Boots!  watch out for Boots!"  Boots, being the stuffed