April 27, 2015 Week 47

Ignacio got confirmed on Sunday.  It was a little worrisome, actually.  Officially this year, Chile stopped using day-light savings time.  However, no one told the phones and the computers, which everyone uses as alarms, so a lot of people showed up late to church when their alarm changed but the time didn’t, including Ignacio.  Actually he and his mom would’t have shown up if we hadn’t called them, telling them they should come as quickly as they could.  The good news is that, firstly, they did come, and I don’t think that they are going to make coming late like that a habit, secondly, they got the person who they requested to confirm (the head of the family with whom we had all the lessons) and, thirdly, he showed up in a shirt, tie and jacket, which is the first time that that has happened.  Elder Granda and I got to participate in the confirmation.

This week, we both suffered from a lot of physical symptoms of stress.  This is kind of new to me, so it sucked a lot.  Starting on Sunday, my neck started to hurt, as well as that of my companion, then we stopped sleeping well, and were exhausted during the day.  My comp is already a very stressed out, easily angered person, and his stress along with mine made it even worse.  I think that that baptism took a toll on us for some reason, and it might have to do with the changing weather.  And Elder Grando only has 3 months left to finish his mission, which is only 2 changes, with I think is making him worry about everything that will happen in the future.

We had a few interesting finding experiences today.  We were finishing up the day on Saturday, and Elder Granda was very stressed out.  He was irritated with how the way the air was blowing on him, I swear.  We were just finishing the day and not talking too much, when a lady called us from a different building in our complex.  She needed a giant dresser moved, and couldn’t do it herself.  She had help, but it was just 2 guys, so they couldn’t move it from the building to the car by themselves.  Elder Granda didn’t want to wait that bad, because we only had 10 minutes and it is amazing how Chileans can make time pass shooting the breeze.  We decided to wait and see what the Lord had ready for us, and while we were waiting for them to move the car, we started talking to her, and found out she was actually a member, and had only stopped going to church because she worked too much.  Before we went scurrying back to the pension, we set a time to meet with her again.

The other one is 100% cooler.  A woman came to church today, named Flor, and stayed for the whole time.  I’ll tell her story from the beginning.  She was born in Peru, and moved to the U.S, where she met the missionaries.  She learned the gospel and almost got baptized, but had to move to Chile.  She had explored many churches and studied a lot, and understood much of the gospel.  One of the things she didn’t like about the churches that she attended was the rules about dress.  She was actually been kicked out of churches based on how long her dress was, and she didn’t feel that that was justified.  Because of her bad experiences, she had passed through a lot of churches, and for a long time, she had been eyeing our chapel, but had met opposition to attend.  She doesn’t own a home, but instead lives in a catholic church with a woman, who spoke very strongly against the Mormons.  Last Sunday, she finially came, wanting to put us to the test.  She was wearing a dress that she thought wasn’t that modest (it wasn’t that bad, it still hit her knees; but she thought that it should be down to her ankles at least) and saying “If they kick me out, they kick me out, and I will never come back.”  She came in, and found a Sister who escorted her into the chapel, encouraging her all the way, quieting her doubts about her dress and telling her absolutely she could come in during sacrament meeting.  That sister stayed with her the whole day, offering her everything, from lunch that day to stay in their house with them.

That was only the first group of mini miracles.  What followed was even better.  We just happened to have lunch with that same family yesterday, and after eating with her and the family, we taught her lesson 1, and we had so much support from the family.  I think it may have been the most caracatured, “Mormon Message”ish contact/reference I have ever seen.  Even her questions were perfect.  They ended up giving her a Book of Mormon and a Triple, which, when they handed her the triple, she started to cry.  Seriously, it was something to see.

I love all of you.  I don´t think I say that enough.  I am trying to be focussed, but there is a difference between focussed and cold.  I am doing the best I can and trying to be better every day.  I am praying for all of you.

Elder Mathewson

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