Monday, August 13, 2012

Teaching the Kids

Thanks for all your support of Elder Schwartz.  He loves getting letters from you all.  Here is his address:

Elder Nate Schwartz
Pedro De Valdivia 1423
29 Santiago, Region Metropolitana

Here is his latest letter to us:

Hey Family!

Wow wow wow! My first transfer in Chile is already coming to a close.  We will have our changes meeting on Sunday, but we are all pretty sure that Elder Clyde and Garcia and Miller and I are all staying here in Geronimo.  They seldom change new missionaries half way through the 12 week  program.  Life here and the work here is as great as ever.  I'm going to run through the highlights quickly because, sadly, I don´t have a lot of time to write today.
Pizza in Chile?
 This week I had the opportunity to go on exchanges again, in the same area that I did last time, but this time with a different companion, Elder Bustamante from Peru!  He's a great missionary who is about 5 feet tall (seriously), and has a passion for dancing, but he's super shy!  Missionaries can't be shy, so for the whole time while we were on exchanges, I had to do most of the talking.  That was fine with me because I needed the practice!  We mostly visited families of inactive members, including the house of this super awesome old man who works as a carpenter from his garage/workshop, and he makes the most beautiful chairs that I have ever seen.  After sharing Ether 12:6 with him and discussing with him the challenges we face in this life and how they are a necessity to grow and progress, and about what our real purpose is here, and how sometimes we can forget that purpose, we challenged him to attend church this past Sunday.  I'm not sure if he did attend because its not my ward, but the Spirit was strong in the lesson and I'll bet he did. 

President Wright is putting a strong strong emphasis on working with the members.  He says that's the way that we need to be finding investigators, through references from church members.  Elder Garcia and I have spent a lot more time in members homes recently and less time knocking doors, and the members in my ward are SO AMAZING and SO loving and supportive of the work.  Elder Garcia and I were in the house of a family last night (The husband speaks English, thank heavens), and they ended up giving us 6 references for some of their friends and neighbors.  These people are just waiting for us to ask them for their help and they are ready to give it! 

We walk EVERYWHERE, all day, every day.  We only take the bus if we are leaving our sector.  Geronimo missionaries sing as they walk and walk and walk and walk and walk and walk and walk.

Two weeks ago Elder Garcia and I were knocking doors and we went to this house and a lady in her 20's answered and she was super interested, but busy, and so we set an appointment for the following week at the same time.  So we went the following week, but when we knocked, that lady's older sister answered, and we talked for a while and she was interested, but busy and told us to come back the following week at the same time.  So we did come by on Saturday, but THIS time their little brother answered and we had the opprotunity to teach him the first lesson and pray with him.  He's 17, super spiritual, and super cool.  We have an appointment to meet them again this week and hopefully THIS TIME we'll be able to teach all three of them at the same time. 

This past Saturday evening we got to play soccer with the ward (missionaries are allowed to play if they bring a progressing investigator).  We brought Pedro, who is 17, very active in the church youth program and we teach him and his mother every week.  Anyways, I'm horrible at soccer, and these guys are amazing.  I was getting shown up by both 50 year olds and 6 year olds alike, but they were kind and supportive about it and taught me a few things.  Maybe I shouldn't have quit soccer when I was 9........
Soccer Stars
 Elder Miller and I were by ourselves this Sunday, as both of our comps are district leaders and they had a meeting with an Area Seventy (regional church leader).  So we had to get by with our "gringo" Spanish on our own for the whole day.  It was quite the experience.  At church this lady from the ward came up to us and told us that she was short a Primary (Sunday School for little kids) teacher and she needed us to fill in.  We were both super nervous, but Elder Miller and I have this motto, YOSO (you only serve once), so we took our motto to heart and decided to fill in.  I am SO HAPPY that we did.  We taught the six year olds, and they were so good!  We taught them about prayer, why we pray, and how to pray.  We talked to them about what they are thankful for and what they ask Heavenly father to help them with; all of the steps.  I had a blast!  I love, love, love teaching.  I attached photos to this email and one is with that primary class.  It really was one of my favorite experiences in Chile thus far.

Primary Class in Local Ward
 Today for p-day we went to the Mall nearby, bought lunch, got groceries, sent our letters off, and then went to the chapel to play basketball.  I'm almost as bad at basketball as I am at soccer.  OH shoot, I got 5 letters this week!  It was so cool!  Getting the love and support from friends back hoime really does brighten my week.  Devin Singh sent me the sweetest letter.  Could you please facebook him thank you for me and tell him that a letter is on its way to him!

I love you all so much.  Thank you so much for your love, support, and examples.  I love hearing about all of the fun and amazing things that you have all been doing.  I know that I am doing the Lord's work, and that He is the head of this church, and that He is watching over each and every one of us.  I'm praying for you all, and I can't wait to hear from you next week!

Elder Schwartz
Bowling during a previous P-day

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