Monday, November 13, 2017

no estaba ni alli


Looks like the summer is on its way. This week for the first time in a long time I had to break out the short sleever.... I think you guys are starting to put the jackets back on about this time right? This week was full of good stuff and good times.
Let me tell you a little about Matias and Marialita and their family. About two months ago we talked with them in the street and marialita ended up being a less active mom. We invited her to church and asked what day we could go visit her. She showed up to church the next sunday and told us that it was just really hard to visit her because she works all the time. But we ended up finding her house out in the middle of the countryside. She told us the truth though she was never home. ever. Anyway after a few weeks of trying we finally found them in their house with their dad who is a pretty hard headed catholic. We shared with them and realized that the dad was as we say here 'ni alli' which means doesnt really care. So long story short After a few weeks of slowly working along with the family we have seen lots of progress with the whole family. The last time the dad even started to flip through the book of mormon a little and ask us questions like 'who is abinidai?' And the best part is that this friday the whole family came to play soccer even the dad. without saying we beat everyone, my companion and me along with the dad, Matias, and the older brother. I remember what Bishop Knudsen would always say in priest quorom meeting. Just be pleasently persistent. It Just goes to show that persistence and gentleness go a long way. And believe it or not the Dad was terribly happy this saturday at matias' baptism.
The gospel is true and it changes lives.

The coast life is the best life hehe It is wild how I have already been here 6months in this sector and how much I feel like i have grown. I am always in awe of what the lord does when we just are willing to let him form and mold us. He wants the best of us in fact he gives us the commandment to be perfect. But knows it is impossible he is happy when we just try our best but dont just depend on ourselves when we depend on him. I hope to reach that goal one day but until then we will just keep on keepin on.
Elder Holdstock

Monday, November 6, 2017

HAPPY HALLOWEEN

DULCE O TRAVESURA
That is what you say in Chile if you want to go trick or treating. It was fun to see lots of kids dressed up and trick or treating this last week. One of the funniest things that happened, is that on Halloween we were actually on divisions so I was with Elder Bean from Utah and my companion was with his companion, as we were walking home at night to our house I saw a group of teenagers walking down our street and out of nowhere I hear a bunch of screaming and that someone had run through the middle of them, they were scared out of their minds but then I saw the shadow of who was running away down the street it looked like it was a 19 or 20 year old.. hmm interesting then I realized he was wearing a sweater and dress pants... then I realized that it was my companion...haaha They had gotten home a little bit earlier than us and he told me that he saw the group and just couldnt resist. hahah in our mission there is a theme that is 'Hablar con Todos' (talk with everyone) but on halloween it looks like it turned into 'Asustar Todos' or Scare Everyone.
This Saturday we had a special meeting in Santiago with Elder Christensen from the presidency of the 70. He came with his wife and with another 70 Elder Texeira, it was way awesome because all of our mission was also together with the south mission. So there was about 400 missionaries all together. They asked me to play the piano so I played the prelude and the hymns we sang, when Elder Christensen came to shake my hand he said 'your mother would be proud' haha thats the idea I told him. We learned a lot about the how we can be better missionaries he told us some cool stories about when he was mission president as well It was a good experience to feel of their spirit and testimonies.
This week we had a lot of great service opportunities and teaching opportunities. We are excited to be working hard and seeing miracles everyday. I continue in awe everyday at how the Lord works in mysterious ways and how he always answers our prayers but always knows how things need to work out. He is aware of what is happening in our lives and he wants to help us. More than that he needs us. He needs us as much as we need him.
I hope everyone had a great halloween and that you all dressed up like me... haha just kidding. Have a wonderful week!
Elder Holdstock
P.S. I got the package!! Thank you so much!! you saved my life. Also the other goodies will do me well as well. You guys are the best. My companion loves the tie you sent him as well. He wants you to know he loves you.. He wrote on the back of it 'mama de Holdstock' lol we took pictures but this computer wont load them... rip.. Love you guys lots. besos

Monday, October 30, 2017

HEY MOM.

Ooh where do I start. This sunday was a special sunday in particular because even though all our investigators showed up late to sacrament meeting Francisco passed the sacrament for his first time today. It is cool to see how the gospel really does change people but also that each person progresses at different speeds. Some people need a lot more persuading but others just do it because they want to be obedient to the lord. We passed by this week to talk to him about the sacrament and how he can pass it now but that he is going to have to wear a white shirt and tie to church. He is not the type of guy that likes to wear white shirts or ties. But we showed up sunday and there he was waiting there ready to pass. 

Out here in Algarrobo we find soo many people that speak english.. because it is kinda a richer part of chile so the majority of the people are here living because they are already retired and lots of them worked in the states or learned english for work or something like that. I would say that just about every single day this week we talked to someone in english. We taught a guy named Lautaro who speakes english perfectly because he lived 20 years in New York... He turned out to be ateo.. but we taught him about the restauration and at the end of the lesson he did the prayer... which is really rare with the atheists because they dont like to pray if they dont believe in god. So that was a good little bit of progress there.

On Friday we had a training with president so we had to do a lot of traveling haha we left at 7 in the morning and got back to our sector at 9 at night. My companion and I had to teach how to contact and give some examples. It was a good conference and we learned lots.

We also found a lady this week named Jazna.. well not really but we found her house because we already knew her. She went to a baptism we had a few weeks ago because she is friends, but we only knew the general idea of where she lived so we went searching and found her. Missionaries are the best detectives nobody can hide from us.. ;) haha but she is super receptive and is now progressing really well! 

I hope everyone had a great week! Sounds like soccer ended up really well I cant wait to hear the updates about the high school season and everything. I also keep hearing rumors that the US didnt qualify for the world cup.. but it cant be so... i shall cry if it is.

Have a great week!

Elder Holdstock

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

One year ago…

Can you believe it??? it is pretty crazy that one year ago we were just finishing up getting the bags all packed and making sure everything was ready to go. I was planning on writing a novel today buuuuut.. we had some problems here with the computers and so I have like 7 minutes to right.. RIP.  

But I just thought I would let you know that we are doing wonderful right know and that it has been a great week. I have been blessed with the opportunity to know this gospel and to have had such a great family that has always taught me what is right. I know that though we are not perfect Jesus loves us and when we come to him and we just are humble and we let him change us he will do it and we will become who we need to be. 

Chile is great and the people are too. I hope that everyone has such a great week and that this week you have the time to meditate and ponder in the scriptures. Mucho love.

Elder Holdstock

Monday, October 16, 2017

Hola Desde la Playa!

Hello Hello!

We had changes today and can you belive it I am staying here in Algarrobo! My companion got sent away and I will be receiving a new companion. They say that he is also Argentine so I think that God wants me to finish the mision with an argentine accent and not with a chilean one. 

I am excited to be here a little bit longer though! I feel like there is still lots of work for me to do here even though we have already seen a lot of miracles and successes I am glad to have a little bit more time here to really help all the people who have been baptized adapt and help the investigators make that leap of faith. 

The coast is something else though. We ate lunch the other day with a member named Luis, he lives alone in the middle of nowhere up in the mountains and is constructing his own house. He still doesnt have running water or light but has been living there for about a year. It is crazy. Even though he lives super far away he is always one of the first people to arrive to church every morning. I asked him how long it takes to get to church for him and he said a little more than an hour. I was thinking about how sometimes I would wake up at 8:47 to get to church at 9:00... haha what sacrifice right??

We saw some awesome little miracles in church this week too. A guy named daniel just showed up out of nowhere. We had talked to him in the street about two weeks ago and invited him to church because he didnt want us to go to his house because he is renting there or somthing... so he came to church and said that he enjoyed it!

It is crazy to think that I am getting close to a year. The time flies here like I remember vividly what I was doing a year ago. But what I know is that god has his hand in our lives and that he has a plan for us. Thank you for all your prayers and your support I hope you all have the best week

Elder Holdstock



Wednesday, October 11, 2017

#pray4chile

This week we painted the world with the gospel and with paint.... lol. We started out the week painting a house up in the mountains. It was way fun because the house is up on stilts so it was really high off the ground... so we had to get really creative and put the paint rollers on the end of really long tree branches so that we could get the paint all the way up the house and on all the sides. It brought me flash backs of the random stuff we would do in Student Government just to get the job done sometimes not in the most traditional way but at least whatever worked. 

Another funny thing that happened before I get too spiritual on ya is last week when we were helping a family move their things to another house we were at the old house but the owners werent there and we didnt have the key to get in so we were just sitting there. But I had another flashback to a night about a year ago when Tanner Anderson came over and we were hottubbing and then we spent about an hour learning how to pick locks... or I spent an hour learning and he spent an hour teaching me. And he taught me that sometimes when locks arent that good you can use just about any key if you just jiggle it and shake it enough to open the lock. So I decided to go for it and we got that door open in about 1 minute flat... haha so the things you learn really do serve for all your life.

We are coming to the end of this change and so that means that most likely either I or my companion will be leaving but we arent sure who. I have really enjoyed it here and have learned a lot and met so many awesome people who have been able to learn about the gospel and make changes to become more christlike. But nobody knows what will happen yet we will have to just wait and see.

This week Connie (who is the daughter of the mom who reads the book of mormon to her kids) made this little art project for school of Adam and Eve because she loved when we explained the plan of salvation to them and then she wanted to give it to us to take home to our house. She got a 7 btw which is like gettting an A+ in Chilean terms i mean look at it it is pretty cool isnt it? 



We had a great time this week teaching as well. Like a little old guy we are teaching named Julio said this week when we talked to him, 'it is like the dark clouds are disappearing and I can see the light' that is exactly what the gospel does for us. As we learn we gain hope and we grow our faith and that faith grows 'brighter and brigther until the perfect day' I loved what you said about the testimony of bro. watson haha. I think that the book of mormon is just such a powerful tool in the conversion process because it is so clear and precise in what it says. I was pondering the articles of faith and especially the one that says, 'we believe the bible to be the word of god as far as it is translated correctly, we also believe the book of mormon to be the word of god' and how the bible is not perfect there are errors and things that dont make sense but that the book of mormon is the word of god... not to a point but it is the word period. The people are so human and imperfect in the book of mormon so that we can relate to them well but the doctrines are perfect.

We are also needing to pray for chile today because tomorrow is do or die against brazil so they can classify for the world cup... hahaha 

I hope you all had a great week it sounds like it was homecoming? That is way awesome I look forward to seeing all the pictures of the fashion. Have a great week!

Elder Holdstock



Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Conf

I think that conference has to be one of the best times of the year. Such a good moment to rethink and evaluate and be better. I loved all the sessions and all the talks so much. i am the same as you mom when you say that after every talk I was convinced that that was going to be my favorite one. 

This week we were blessed to have a lot of awesome experiences with our investigators. We have been teaching a man named Dormeus who has been searching for the true church for a while now he says. The cool thing about Dormeus is that a little while ago like 2 months ago he was a refferal from Elder Tiev, but we could never find him because we didnt know where he lived and his phone never worked we just had his name and the general direction of where he lived. BUT a few weeks ago we were walking down the street and I saw a man standing on the side of the road and without even thinking I stopped walking and started talking to him. I asked him his name and who would have guessed! it was Dormeus and I showed him the phone number we had for him and asked if he was the same one and he said yes but that he had changed his phone number a while back. So that was a little tender mercy that we were able to find him and we have had some great progress with him as he is praying and studying the book of mormon. He loved Conference.

We went to Cartagena this week as well in the pouring rain to help a family that recently got baptized move because they were getting kicked out of their house. It just so happens that a week after their baptism the owners of the house started to blame lots of stuff on them like the high electricity bill and other stuff but the coincidence is that the owners of the house or the renters are actually testigos de jehovah.. so who knows why they are actually being kicked out. Anyway we helped them move all of their stuff to another house but this house is super far away and in the middle of nowhere, it was just rough to see the trials they were facing, the gospel doesnt take away our trials but does give us the strength we need to bear them up. I was impressed this week as I studied the story of the pueblo who escaped from king noah and the scriptures that described their hardships, but that the lord didnt take away the hardships right away, rather he gave them strength so that they could bear their burdens and after they had shown their faith and patience he freed them from bondage. I saw that literally this week in this family.

God is real. And he really does love us, just look for the little evidences of his love this week and youll be a different person the next.

Elder Holdstock