Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Seeing Old Companions and Finding New People

Hello! 

Hows life? Life is good down here. We are happy doing the work of the Lord. Its incredible the changes that one goes through when you are dedicated to serving others and helping other people be happy. I really appreciate the chance to be here in Chile to share the gospel with everyone we can find. And we are finding a ton of people. I had the great experience of going on exchanges with one of my great friends this week. If you think wayyyyy back to my first change in the mission, I lived with two Gringos and an Ecuatoriano. His name was Elder Montenegro. It just happens that this change I get to be his District Leader and we got to do exchanges this week. It was so cool because my spanish is a lot better and his english is a lot better, too, so we could understand each other well. I had been so excited to go with him and we finally did. We worked in his sector, Jardín del Valle. We were able to have a lesson with an investigator that has quit smoking so that she can get baptized. It is amazing the power of the Atonement of Jesus Christ because He is actually able to help us all in our trials if we are willing to accept his help. We then were able to talk to a less active family and try to help them go to church. We talked about the Plan of Salvation and how God has a plan for each one of us in our lives, with the end of this plan being living with Him and our families forever in happiness and peace. Its incredible how knowing what we are doing here and where we are going and how to get there helps people to progress in this life to be happy. We did exchanges from Monday to Wednesday, so I didn´t work in the sector until Wednesday in the afternoon, but when I got back my trainee, Elder Lee had found about 11 new people just contacting and so we had 2 lessons that day. On Thursday we traveled the four hours to Rancagua to have a meeting as trainers and trainees with President Harris. It was really cool to see how much all of the new missionaries have progressed in the short time they have. We returned home that night at about 11:20 (after another 4 hours on a bus). On Friday we had another lesson with a woman named Francia. She is a young mom that is super cool and really likes to talk about the gospel. We were able to share the Plan of Salvation with her and again it was a blessing to see the comfort that knowing who we are brings to our lives. Yesterday we were kind of walking around after all of our plans had fallen through, but we had some major blessings. We decided to change our plans and just go climb the tallest hill we could find close to us (there are a lot of hills here). Then we decided to try to find the confusing path to the highest house on top of this hill. We finally got to the house just to see who lives there and they opened the door. We talked a little bit on the outside and then they invited us inside, gave us dinner and we were able to talk for like an hour. They are super great. They are super interested in the gospel and are excited to see all the blessings of the Book of Mormon. We are going to return there this week to teach them more. We are really excited for this week that comes. This last week we found a total of 7 new people to teach and it was a great blessing to know that there are so many people who want to be happy or happier and have found the way to find it - Jesus Christ. I am happy to be the tool through which Christ can work to make people happy. This is a gospel of happiness. I love you all and hope that you have a great week!

Love,

Elder Sayler

Friday, September 23, 2016

Elder Packer and the 18 de Septiembre




Hola familia! 

our 18 party with empanadas and the tacos we were going to make
Wow this week was a little crazy. Actually on Monday and Tuesday nothing really happened, we kind of just walked around looking for people to teach. Then on Wednesday we went to Talca for our district classes. After that I had one of the coolest opportunities in my mission - as a district leader I have the awesome opportunity of giving people the interview before baptism. It was with a man named Claudio from San Javier. He has been investigating the church for a few months now and is super excited to get baptized. It was so cool just to sit with him and talk about how the gospel has helped him get his life so much better. He was so excited to just get baptized and become a member of the church that Christ established on the earth for the children of God. The experience strengthened my testimony so much (which helped a lot for an experience that I will share in a little bit). On Thursday we had a special visit from Elder Packer from the Quorum of the 70´s and a special training for the mission. It was incredible to hear from him and learn about how we can use our faith and the Spirit of God to work miracles in our sectors. We were all spiritually supercharged to just go out and work. We got back home on Thursday night, so we didn´t really do anything else that day. Then everything started happening on Saturday. First of all, we went with an investigator named Koki that has 15 years and we started teaching about the Plan of Salvation. He is finally interested in the message because his brother died a little bit ago and he wants to know where he is right now and how he can live with him again. We only had 15 minutes so we only taught the very first part about where we were before this life. Then we went to a lesson that we had with some future investigators that said that they would like us to pass by. We entered their house and the family was waiting for us with two guests - missionaries from their church. Its a relatively new church and they are the only family in Conti so I guess they wanted to see what we call a Bible Bash. We got their and started talking and started with a prayer and started teaching the Restoration, beginning with God is your loving Heavenly Father. From there began a two hour lesson where they attacked every point of doctrine in the church, from the Book of Mormon to baptism and from the priesthood to prophets and God in general. We really tried to be wise in our words and the scriptures that we shared because if someone tries to Bible Bash (contension between two churches and using different scriptures from the bible to prove why your church is true and why the other church isn´t) usually the Spirit leaves the lesson. We put more trust in the Spirit that was with us and just testified as much as possible. We testified about the truthfulness of the Book of Mormon and how God is our Father and He loves us and even though there are many ways to interpret the Scriptures we can always ask Him and He will answer us. The lesson was very powerful because even though they literally had a list of things to accuse us of on an IPad we were able to defend our doctrine and testify with power and authority to confound all false doctrine. We finished the lessons with the most powerful testimonies that we could muster and finished the lesson and everybody just sat there looking at us because they couldn´t think of anything alse to accuse us of and they were impressed by the power of the Spirit. We waited in silence and then finished with a prayer and left. It was incredible because we left with the greatest feeling that despite all of the anti-mormon stuff we were accused of, we were able to testify that God does answer prayers and that He has answered our prayers so we not only believe this church to be true, but we know it and that was our testimony and they couldn´t deny it. We were so strengthened after that lesson even though the whole time it was a set up. Then we visited some families for the 18 de Septiembre which is Independance Day in Chile and we had some great food and spent some quality time with investigators. We even made tacos because we told them that my Mexican companion taught me how to make tacos. It was a great week. I hope everybody is doing well up in Washington. I love you all and hope you have a great week!

Love,

Elder Sayler
sunrise from our house in conti :)


Friday, September 16, 2016

Talca, Footbol Curfew and Helping People

Hello!

Elder Lee and Elder Sayler
This week was a good week. So we started out in Talca on Monday. So on Monday night we caught the bus home after PDay and that was the rest of our day because the bus trip is so long. We were on companion exchanges until Wednesday. On Tuesday we started working, but the Zone Leaders called us and told us that we had to enter the house early because Chile was about to play soccer. So we left the house and called to confirm our visiting appointments and the three that we had planned all cancelled, so we had to call the members and thank them for being willing to acompany us, but that we would have to go a different day. So we just started contacting, knocking on doors and talking to people in the streets. I was with Elder Davis, a newer missionary with only a few months. Right next to our house we met a man and his wife that were trying to put up a gate on some property that they have, but he was trying to do it alone. We offered our help and he accepted (which never happens). We ended up changing our clothes and helping them for an hour and a half. We had to dig out big holes and put in the posts (which were logs that he had cut down from his property, so they are like 15 feet tall). He said that it was a miracle because just before he had started his brother and friend both called him to cancel the project, so he was going to do it alone. We didn´t end up finishing all the way, but he was very thankful for the help. They said that someday we can pass by to share a little bit with them the message that we share with the people here. That was a pretty cool experience. Wednesday we had to travel again to Talca to our Zone meeting, so I didn´t get to teach my weekly class. After that nothing very cool happened in the week until Saturday, just a lot of walking around, contacting new people to teach. On Saturday we were finally able to find one of our investigators named Koki. He´s 15 and the best friend of a less active member of the church. We stopped by his house and they were both there so we were able to share about the importance of the Book of Mormon. It was really cool because we were able to testify about the power that comes and the peace that we feel when we read the Book of Mormon. After that we passed by a man named Carlos. He talks a lot and didn´t invite us in, but we just listened to him talk for a while until he asked us if we believe in the Bible and what is the Book of Mormon. We were able to share with him outside about why the Book of Mormon is necessary and how they both can be used together to help us come closer to God. He was so interested that he actually stopped talking and listened to us and accepted a Book of Mormon to study more about it. We are going to try again this Saturday. Later we were able to have another lesson with an investigator named Mario about prophets. After that we were able to go with our Bishop and talk with our investigator, Pedro. He is the one that is in a very hard place right now and needs lots of help. The last time we visited him he was living off of a diet of coffee because that is the only stuff he had left. We were able to talk to him and the Bishop is going to help him find a good job so that he can live better. He also came to church on Sunday and is thinking about getting baptized soon so that he can be happy. We had a pretty rough week until Saturday when we were able to have a great and very spiritually fulfilling day. In the end this was a very good week. My companion Elder Lee is a great companion and he tries very hard to do everything right. I have learned a lot from him and am very excited for this week. I hope everything is going well at home. I love you all and will see you soon.

Love,

Elder Sayler


We hope that everyone is excited for the national holidays!

The rules for that day are as follows:
*It is not allowed to proselytize that day
*Avoid large groups of people where there may be alcohol or other hazards
*You may be with members or investigators if you are invited
*Everyone will have to be in the house at 8:00 pm unless there is a branch or ward activity
*Remember that the 18th is Sunday, so we must keep the Sabbath day even if members or others are not
*You can have "huaso" clothing during branch/ward activities unless the activity happens on Sunday (I believe huaso is slang for normal clothes vs. their suits or shirts and ties)

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Hey!

Hey! 

How`s life at home? Is it getting colder now in Washington? Its slowly getting warmer here in Conti. It went through a hot flash and now it is cold again. Its pretty warm during lunch time, but then in the night it gets cold and windy, but that`s ok because we have jackets. This week started pretty promising. We had a ton of lessons set up and had invited members to attend with us, but in the end 5 lessons fell. 4 because the investigators weren`t there and 1 because the member couldn`t make it. It was a little bit of a let down because we are trying to work with the ward better, but it was also ok because it gave us a chance to find more people and at least show the members that we want to work with them. We have had a good couple of weeks together. We are working hard and finding a lot of people to teach so there`s nothing to complain about. We are actually having about 2-3 appointments every day so it is a huge improvement on walking around all day every day. My district is great. I am going on companion exchanges today until Wednesday so it`ll be pretty fun. I am looking forward for this week, its going to be awesome. I love you all and hope that you have a great week!

Love,

Elder Sayler