Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Alex's 54th email from Chile 8/29/11

The picture says it all!!!

Hola Familia!!!!

This week was awesome. Me and Elder Garcia work a lot. Carolina and her kids who were baptized were out of town so they didn't get confirmed, but hey they asked me to do the confirmations this Sunday! So it will be my first time in my whole mission to do one.
 Elder Garcia, Alex, Elder Merchan & Elder Hall

I guess if you were paying attention I just gave it away that I don't have changes. So that means that I am going to finish training Elder Garcia for another change and then leave. But I kinda knew already that I wasn't going to have changes. President King told me once that he wanted me to finish Training earlier in the change at one of our meetings. But Elder Hall has changes so our pension is sad because we all got along crazily. I will miss him but the pension is going to receive another greenie, Elder Merchan is going to train. So basically I had to call my whole branch to tell them I didn't have changes, no one wanted me to leave. Some were actually crying at the thought that I might leave. 
 Alex the new tennis wonder!

Man I am blanking on what to write I am so tired haha. We were up late last night helping Elder Hall, and we just got done playing tennis. Hey by the way i should have played tennis in highschool by the way I am not too bad. It's way freaking fun I didn't loose once today, just way fun. 

So yesterday I had a really cool experience. We were with a family that we have reactivated so they always want us to come over and feed us. They love us. But the Mom asked me if I could give her a blessing of health. Of course I said yes. So I was giving her the blessing and I just felt like it wasn't because she was sick and that the blessing was for another reason and she just wasn't telling me. Well I started talking a ton about the Holy Ghost and how if we live worthily it can help us be stronger and over come obstacles and challenges in our lives and stuff like that. Well turns out I was right because at the end of the blessing she was bawling and turns out her and the Husband had had a huge fight earlier that morning. So I don't know, it's just cool to feel inspired and what not. Its not something you feel everyday you know, just shows the power of blessings. 
 Elder Leavitt, Elder Garcia & young women from the branch?

So as you know already I don't have changes, Elder Garcia is progressing. He is just learning, we will get there. We have another kid of a less active family we are teaching and actually has a baptismal date!!! so here in this change we should have another baptism so we are excited about that. It was freezing this week as usual, it actually rained the last two days and hailed a little yesterday. Today though the sun appears to be out so that is good haha. In the bible I am in Ezequiel 5 I think but I finished Jeremiah!! woop!

Well family I love you all and hope you are doing all good. I will see if I can send an email with some pictures to you guys. CHAU!!!

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Alex Leavitt

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Alex's 53rd email from Chile 8/22/11

Elder Garcia, Elder Alex & Elder Hall
Hola Familia!!!

This week was a good one! Except for the crazy amount of rain we had this past week things have been awesome.  Basically we have been preparing everything for the baptisms this week.  But I will start at the begining of the week

This last week I don't know what I ate but Thursday I was basically living in the bathroom.  But now I am all good. This last week it was soo cold it actually snowed in Santiago!!!!  First time since like 2001 or something like that it was a big deal but I was cold.  Also Thursday we had another meeting with President King.  It was all about teaching the Doctrine of Christ and tying it all in with the Most Important Thing (Eternal Life) it was cool. 

So every week on Saturday all the missionaries go to a sector in our zone and work for a couple hours. Now this week it was our turn. And we need maps and names from the branch to give to them and usually.  We didn't get the maps but we basically just did some quick planning between us missionaries and it turned out good in the end. 

Sunday was the big day. Sunday Mark, Sebastian, and Marion and all of their families came to church.  After we had a quick lunch because the baptism was at 3:30 and because we have our meetings in a little house we go to the Isla de Maipu for our baptisms. We get there, change, meet the parents of Carolina and her siblings, we took pictures, had some talks on baptism and the holy ghost, the primary sang I Am A Child of God, and than we had the baptismal service. Marion was baptized first by Elder Merchan.  Then I baptized Mark, and then Elder Garcia baptized Sebastian. Pobrecito Elder Garcia was so nervouse to baptize he forgot the words and had to do it again. But over all it was an awesome baptism I loved it and everyone else did too.  There were actually a ton of people there as well members and non members it was real neat.  Then after we had some refreshments. After the baptism Carolina invited us to come over for an Asado and I am never one to turn down some churripan and ribs so us four went there to finish off our day it was awesome.

 Sebastian, Mark, Marion & Elder Leavitt

(These are Alex's answers to my questions) Elder Merchan is in the middle mom.  He is obviously the one from Spain come on haha.  The other on is Elder Hall. I told Merchan you said you are going to send a package with his jersey he is all excited.  In the bible I am in like Jeremiah 27 or something like that.  I doubt Juan died from old age.  He was only like 60 something but he was a raging alcoholic before he was converted.  Like you would find him in the streets passed out and was actually hospitalized a couple of times for it.  But he was always sick because he just destroyed his body.  Sad eh?

Well guys I love you all estoy feliz to hear that you are all doing good. We find out who has changes this Sunday so lets see what happens.  I already have like 5 months here in this sector but whatever happens happens.  I will do whatever God wants from me. Stay safe I love you.

Con Mucho Amor y CariƱo,

Elder Alex Leavitt

Alex & his dog Shadow. I think he will be sad and really miss him if he gets transferred.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Alex's 52nd email from Chile 8/15/11

Alex, Elder Hall, & Elder Merchans

Hla Familia!

This week was great! We played alot of soccer today.  I really do love soccer.  But ya this last week though really was fantastic. On tuesday President King and the assistents came to our district meeting.  Funny story, all of the companionships brought something to eat afterwards like juice chips cookies whatever ya? and during the meetings someone came into the chapel and stole all of the food we had bought!!!  I was not happy but I was like whatever. After Elder Hall and I had division and it was fun to work in my old sector and visit some families there in La Islita 2.  Also during the week we had recieved a reference about an inactive guy whos wife and son are not baptized. So we went by and taught them and now his son has a baptismal date!! and the mom said she is willing be be baptized but more down the line of teaching and everything she will commit.  So basically we are going to be having 2 more baptisms on top of what we already have planned so we are really excited about that.

Speaking of baptisms Mark, Sebastian, and Marion are getting baptized this Sunday!!! We are stoked! I am going to baptize Mark, Elder Garcia Sebastian, and Elder Merchan Marion. I am really excited.  It was Elder Merchans birthday yesterday so Carolina and all of them threw a party and we had an awesome Asado!!!  I love Churripan. Hey Mom, speaking of Elder Merchans birthday his parents sent him some Barcelona Jerseys and he gave me one.  It is awesome and I told him I would give him one of my basketball practise jerseys so in my next package you send off can you put one of those in there?? thank you! 

On friday we had our greenie meeting.  I understood alot more of it than my last one haha but it was cool.  It was all classes I have already had and we watched the Holland talk again which was cool.  The lunch was the best part. Hermana King made taco salad!!! Some sad news though, I was talking with Elder Diaz my companion when I was in Lo Ovalle, he told me that Juan our convert passed away not too long ago!! CRazyness I don't know why everyone is dying. 

But overall I am happy.  We are making progress in the sector.  We are helping German start his mission papers.  He told us last week he wants to go he is 25 and a stud. You might remember him from my last call home. Elder Garcia is progressing along and life is just great.  The weeks pass by way too fast.

Mark, Sebastian, and Marion are doing awesome and excited for the baptism. Jessica is slow, she is just lazy and doesn't want to complete with her commitments. When it rains hard the streets do flood and its annoying. Our dogs name is Sombra (Shadow). Ok so to explain the jersey, there are 3 main soccer teams in Chile.  I am Colo-Colo and their rival is La U or the U and they use the same U of Utah.  Now their colors are blue red and white. The jersey I have is a La U jersey but a practise jersey as you can see it is red black and white like Utah so I bought it haha. In the bible I finished Isaiah and I am in Jeremiah 10 or something like that.  Sunday night we had another meeting with Pres King making 3 times the last week I saw him but it was with all the leadership and missionaries in Talagante talking about the missionary work in the wards. It was cool.

Well family thats all I got for you all and hope you are all doing great!

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Alex Leavitt

Monday, August 8, 2011

Alex's 51st email from Chile 8/8/11

This is my dog he follows me everywhere, to our appointments and waits for me outside of houses.

Alex actually put some comments with his pictures this week!!

Querido Famila,

This week was a good one. It's the weirdest feeling how fast the weeks go by now. I honestly feel like I was writing you guys two days ago and now I am searching my mind to think of things to write because it is all now starting to blur together but I will give it my best shot. 

This last week while playing soccer I got kicked in the face. It hurt so bad and actually broke skin but for the most part it is all healed up so no worries.  We started teaching a lady named Jessica.  It will take alot of work but I think she will progress. Her husband is an inactive member so it will be a good support for her if we can reactivate him (which is not usually the easiest thing).  So I have come to realize that from all of my wards I probably have the confidence of the members here more than any other ward. Just from how much I have been working with in- actives and members trying to help this ward get picked up. Just a little side thought. Tuesday I had divisions with my district leader this week. It was good had alot of visits which was awesome. 

Also I was kicked in the face playing soccer.  You can't see it too well but hurt a lot.

and a sweet walking shot of me and Elder Garcia on the way back from church.

Elder Garcia and I have been dedicating a lot of our time to teaching Mark, Sabastian and Marion because this Sunday they have their baptismal interviews.  So we need to make sure they know everything and understand everything they need to be able to pass their interviews.  I am most worried about Sabastian because he has a learning disability so we have to repeat ourselves and focus a lot on him so he can understand everything.  But I am confident they will all pass.

I am super pumped because I finally got my scripture covers.  Mom those are the ones you said I need to get when that one elder returned from his mission and you saw.

So basically I decided the thing that God wants me to learn most on the mission is pacience.  I think every task, challenge or hard time I have had on the mission has been pacience based.

On Saturday we had a sweet missionary activity again. For the next couple weeks every Saturday all the missionaries are going to go to a sector in our zone and just do massive work for like 3 hours.  So this week we were in the Isla de Maipu working. I was on divisions with Elder Chase a greenie from Georgia.  It was way fun and I liked it alot. Our last contact that we did said "You guys are my Brothers and I love you, so let me buy you food," and he bought both of us each 2 churrascos italianos and pop.  It was awesome!!!

Camilo and Hugo didn't get baptized here.  At least I know Camilo is searching for the church where the military has based him and I am positive he will get baptized.  Hugo I don't know if he will. Our attendance dropped this last week but I believe it had to do with the rain we had.  It rained hard this last week. Apparently there are alot of black latinos in Panama and Columbia.  I have seen some super black.  More black than Elder Garcia from Colombia.  In the bible I only need to read like 10 or 15 more chapters before I finish Isaiah and move into Jeremiah. This week I am excited because we have a greenie meeting so we get to go to Maipu and have a meeting with Presidente King and with all the other greenies and trainers.  About sending me things I really can't think of anything that I NEED so I don't know.  I am pretty low maintenence :)

Ok familia I love you all and hope you are all doing amazing.

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Alex Leavitt

Friday, August 5, 2011

Alex's 50th email from Chile 8/1/11

Hola Familia!!!!

This week was a good week for us here in la Islita!! We have had some good miracles happen for us. Mainly I am just happy because finally things are starting to turn around here. We have had two straight weeks with at least 60 people attend sacrament meeting. We had 4 investigators at church this week. The ward is finally starting to work with us, we recieved a bomb refferal last week and I am sure this family will be baptized. On saturday we had a sweet talent show with our ward. It was cool. At times it was a little unorganized but it was fun, everyone had a good time and I was just happy we are starting to have activities to invite people to. I was the ending act and I sang a song of a famous Chilean artist. his name is Americo and everyone thought it was the funniest thing ever and they all told me I did an excellent job. I was very pleased with my performance. I was just pumped I was able to sing a song memorized in Spanish.

Also this week us as a zone we had a sweet activity. The missionaries from the MTC here in Chile came to Talagante and we all went on divisions with them and worked for an afternoon doing visits and contacts. I was with a kid from Nicaragua named Elder Sanchez.  It was cool working with these elders. None are coming to our mission but I thought it was an awesome activity. 

Elder Garcia has definatly broken out of his shell. He is talking a lot more with the other Elders and with the investigators that he is used to. When we are in contacting situations or in teaching situations he still kinda freezes up and I do most of the talking but that just comes with time and study of the lessons and the scriptures. We have mainly been visiting Mark Sabastian and Marion our investigators that are going to be baptized here in a little. We have been doing lots of contacts I am trying to put Elder Garcia in situations where he is forced to talk because thats the fastest way he is going to learn. When we were waiting for our greenies I will be honest we just ate a lot and had fun conversations with the Elders we dont get to see a lot. In the bible I am in Isaiah 20 something.

Bueno I dont have much time and the fricking internet here is terrible so I got to go and I will talk to you all next week.

Con Mucho Amor,

Elder Leavitt

I don't know what song Alex sang in the talent show but I thought I would 'Youtube' the artist so you could get an idea of what he sounds like. I picked this one for the 'suave' picture. I can totally see Alex acting all suave :)