June 30, 2015 (Week 56)

We have an interesting mix of investigators here in Tobalaba 1 B.  The other day, we contacted a woman, and when we had a lesson with her, it turned out that she was Bajai (I don’t know if that is what they are called in English).  I had never heard of the Bajai before my mission.  They aren’t so much of a religion as a creed, cult or sect.  From what she told us, she believes in everything.  According to her, all religions are correct, and all lead to God.  That makes an interesting challenge for us, because she has read the Book of Mormon and she believes that it is true, and she believes that the church is true, but when we invited her to get baptized, she said “no”, or, in other words, she does not understand that if the Book of Mormon is true, than this is the One True Church of Christ.  I’ll admit, I was a little stumped on what to do, because in any other situation, the Book of Mormon would be the solution.  We also have a Mason investigator (Mauricio), a JW investigator (Edison) and we know a practicing, by-blood Jewish woman (but we can’t start teaching her because her husband won’t let us), as well all of the Evangelicals and Catholics that we teach.

Speaking of Mauricio, he is progressing spectacularily.  We had two lessons with him last week, one with Moroni 7 to help him with his testimony, and one about prophets, the law of chastity and the word of wisdom.  Unfortunately, he has a problem with both of the latter, but I think that he has enough faith to make the changes in his life that he needs to so that he can be baptized by the 26th.  We taught him the “hard” lesson on Saturday, and the next day he came to church, this time staying for two classes, and he brought his girlfriend.  I was really happy that Mauricio came, but a little selfish part of me was a little disappointed that his girlfriend came, because she is a little… open minded.  Another thing that we have been doing is taking members with us, which I think was excellent for him, although a little harder to do than with most investigators, because he lives so far away from where most people live.  He is going to Peru on vacations this next week, so we will get one lesson in with him, and then we won’t be seeing him for a bit.  I hope he will be okay.

Chile beat Peru in the Copa America, putting them into the finals game.  It may be the first time that Chile has one this championship.  Honestly, I don’t really care, but the championship has really been affecting proselyting, so I felt that I should touch on it.  The problem is that the games are in the night, just during the time that we do family nights with our investigators and members, and, like I said last week, Chilean brains turn off during game time.  I’ll be happy when it is all over this Saturday.

Another story that I forgot to tell you about was a woman that we found last week, when we went to get my suit from Cataldo.  We had just gotten onto the street from the Metro station in Puente Alto Plaza, when we were approached by a woman who literally talked like Beeker.  I nor my companion could understand her.  She seemed to be either lost or out of Bip (“Bip” is the card used the in transit system here.  It’s a card that is filled up at designated places with real money and then used to pay for bus and train rides), making it so that she couldn’t go home.  I imagine that she couldn’t call either.  Not knowing what else to do, we gave her a pass-along card, which seemed to calm her, and scurried away.  She is the first-hardest person to understand that I have met, followed closely by a youth in our ward that always is on medication that talks without moving any muscles in his mouth and the mother of Hna Juanita, who speaks like ET mixed with one Alvin the Chipmunk.

Probably the most difficult thing that has been happening this week has been the bathroom.  The bathroom is being repaired, because it is full of mold and badly needs it.  The people that came to repair it tore all of the old tile off of the wall and into the tub and scraping all of the peeling paint off the the walls and ceiling.  Unfortunately, that has made us not able to take showers for a few days and filled our whole pension with dust, especially the study of Elder Granda and I.  The shower part was a little unfortunate.  Originally, we were going to go to another pension, but to save on Bip, we ended up just using the kitchen and the bathroom to give ourselves sponge baths and best we could.  I have never tried doing that, but I can now say it is a very strange experience.  As far as our study goes (and sleeping, because we study and sleep in the same room) we had to move all of our stuff to the living room for a few days, covered in blankets to keep the dust off.  We slept of the floor in the other Elder’s room.  We have recently moved all of our stuff to the living room, with the plan of moving it as best we can when the guys come and covering it with blankets to keep the dust off.  Hopefully, they will finish some time next week, but we will see.  It’s been a little uncomfortable, and it is making everything a little more difficult, because we are having to think about more things at once, and if we screw up, then everything gets covered in dust.  I have been finding that I am forgetting things a lot and I am mentally fatigued, and my comp has also had a toll taken on him.  Fun stuff, but at least it could always get a lot worse.  Still glad to be here.

Love you all.  Sorry for complaining.  I’m just trying to be honest.

Elder Mathewson

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