Wednesday, December 10, 2014


December 8, 2014 

Hey mom and friends!! 

Wow. This week we made some major strides with Antonieta. We really have a goal of doing service for people and that has helped us gain the trust of the people in the sector, especially Antonieta. We went and cleaned part of her very large yard this week and she came to church!!!! She is preparing herself to be baptized the 27th of December. What better Christmas gift for Heavenly father!

Speaking of baptisms, last night I had a wonderful experience to be a part of a baptism.  My first baptism!  Hernando Miguel Sandoval was excommunicated, went through the long process of repentance and was found worthy, and with his wife, was baptized again.  He asked me to baptize him.  It was very cool and I’m so grateful that I was able to help him and help the Lord. 

Elder del Rosario and I are good.  We’ve been finding more people to teach this week.  We just need to start encouraging the members we are finding to help them feel welcome. 

One of the people we found this week is a woman named Ana Maria.  Who after a couple of visits has committed to reading the Book of Mormon from cover to cover.  This week we are going to start teaching about the Restoration and the importance of the Book of Mormon being another witness of Jesus Christ.   

Juan and Mari are moving back to Canada soon.  We have become friends.  Mari wants to continue with lessons in Canada.  We will send her contact information to the missionaries in Canada.  We feel that she wants to become a member of the Church. 

Please tell Mel thanks for the piano stuff.  I’m actually remember a lot more than I thought I would.  The Teddy Bear was a huge success.  Mostly because it is soft and cuddly.  It’s fantastic.  Thank you!!! 

That was our week. I hope you guys have an awesome one. 

Elder Garrett Watts
 



 

Sunday, December 7, 2014

December 1, 2014


December 1, 2014 

Hey mom! I hope Thanksgiving was fantastic and that you ate enough to make you feel sick.  

Well this week we received word about the new initiative for the church about "He is the Gift" which is an effort we’re putting to help people worldwide  to remember the true meaning of Christmas and that Christ was the first Christmas gift. You can watch the short video and learn how to participate more in this movement by visiting Christmas.mormon.org. I would encourage everybody to take a look.  

This week was pretty cool. This morning we played opur turkey bowl, but the ball I had acquired from an old missionary broke. Like tore apart at the seams but it was still very fun. We had a mini thanksgiving with our investigators from north America Juan y Mari, with the Bishop from our ward and his family. Juan and Mari made some major strides and are reading the BoM now!!!  Juan is still somewhat hesitant but I see the potential there. We actually had a lesson with them and President Arrington and his wife, and the missionaries in charge of the new missionaries.  I think it went very well. We were kind a nervous because it was weird teaching; 1. in English. and,  2. in front of mission president. But it went well.  That’s all we can ask for, right?                                   

In Church, apparently I’m the only one who knows how to read music so I’m officially the organist. I do regret not being more diligent with my piano. We have to organize a choir for a Christmas activity and I can barely play the right hand of most of the songs in the hymn book. AHHHHHHHHHHhttps://mail.google.com/mail/e/33A but all is good.  I just practice prelude music and it works out well.  

Two cool/funny things happened this week. Elder Del Rosario was giving stickers to some kid during a lesson and I looked closer at the packaging. Greenbriar mall Chesapeake Virginia 23320. WHAT!?!?!  The world could not be smaller. Also we were walking down the street and we saw a member family so we stopped to say hi. Then a monk turned around the corner and the son of the family started screaming "RUN ELDERS, A MONK!!!"  Instead of “run there’s a Mormon.”  It was really hilarious. I laughed quite hard.  

Elder Del Rosario and I are okay.  I am trying to find  ways to help him have more hope. He’s been in this ward for 3 months and not seen a lot of results. I understand how that makes a person feel but I feel like if he was more excited and have more faith,  the work would go better too.   It’s an odd situation. 

Well, I received my Christmas packages.  Now comes the long wait to open them in 24 days!!!!!! 

I stress again the Importance to visit Christmas.mormon.org and also use the #sharethegift on any social media to as many people to help them remember the true meaning behind Christmas. And if you’re not a Mormon, and you like what you see, I’m sure there’s 2 guys or girls who’d love to talk with you more about the video.  

Feliz Navidad and enjoy all the Christmas songs on the radio!!!  

Elder Watts
 
 
Juan, Mari and Ella

 
Chile Thanksgiving 2014
 

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

November 17th email - Transfer to Concepcion


November 17, 2014 

LIDIA PASSED HER INTERVIEW AND IS A MEMBER OF THE CHURCH!!!!!!!! 

It was such a cool experience.  It was Elder Villarroel's and my first baptism in the mission. He went 1 year and 3 months without a baptism. I can’t imagine the kind of patience that takes! Thank you so much for your prayers. Lidia is doing great.  She went to Relief Society last week and seemed to really like it.  I think she’s gonna be a strong member. She even said she wanted to pay her tithing before we confirmed her a member. Bishop loved that!  

This week is cambios.  I am happy and also sad to say I am leaving Chillan and I’m heading to Concepcion!  I will be in the Lorenzo Arena Ward with my new companion Elder Del Rosario. I know he has a Latino name but apparently he’s from Cali and I’m excited to work with him there.  

I’m am not however looking forward to packing.  I got very use to the setup we had in Los Volcanes.  But change is always for the better.. right? Yeah, I’m pretty sure it is. It is supposed to be cooler in Conce for the summer so there’s already one blessing already!  

Elder Jensen's family came to church last Sunday to pick him up to go home. It was very very strange seeing so many gringos in church.  Even weirder to hear them call Elder Jensen by his first name Ryan. But they had a good experience and the ward was very welcoming. Hard to see Jensen go.  We became very good friends but his time is up and mine’s just starting! Gotta keep working hard and put that shoulder to the wheel.  

Well, I’m sad to go but I know the sector is in good hands. We made massive strides since I first got here. Elder Villarroel and his new companion elder Chuctaya will do great in keeping the work moving forward. They’re actually closing a sector in Los Volcanes.  This means we’re going form 6 missionaries to 4. Elder Young and I are leaving and our companions Elder Villarroel and Elder Chuctaya (same guy from Santiago ccm who has been with me my whole mission) are companions.  

As far as studying this week, I’ve decided that out of all the books in the Bible, I like to use most teaching from Ephesians.  Paul counsels the Ephesians with how to organize and run the Lord’s Church and the importance of the Priesthood.  The epistles to them are awesome.  The Priesthood must be present to do the Lord’s work on the earth. 

Ahhh... changes. Leaving has me thinking that Lidia was the one waiting for us.  Now that she’s been baptized it’s like "alright, on to find more people searching for the Gospel."  That has me excited!  I just hope and pray it doesn’t take another 4 1/2 months to find that person who's waiting for me in Lorenzo Arena!  

Thank you again for all your love and support!  

Elder Garrett Watts
 

 

Monday, November 10, 2014

November 10, 2014


November 10, 2014 

Hey mom! Thanks for the update on the SA conference you did.  I’m very glad it went well for you and that they want you to come back and do more! Is my mom good or what??? 

Crazy story that happened this week....  we brought 7 menos activos to church and 3 investigators and LIDIA IS GETTING BAPTIZED!!!...This Saturday.  She’s 85 year old we met earlier in October! She is so awesome.  When we talked about the Word of Wisdom she told us she already hadn’t been drinking/smoking/coffee/tea for the last 30 years! The Lord really prepares people!  

It’s crazy that we brought so many to church cuz we didn’t have a lot of lessons but the ones we did have were high quality. quality>quantity right? That’s what I think.  

Please Carol in your prayers.  She is really having a hard time since her dad passed away.  

Para que sepas: Officially needed to punch new holes in my belt to keep my pants on. Your man is gonna come back skinnnnnnnnnnny :P but not too skinny cuz I love chocolate too much.  

"Dan Ganas de" means to crave or to have really want. There is a brand of juice down here  called "Watt's" like my last name. This picture is really funny to me… anyways…hope ya like it….. :)  

Elder Villarroel and I are doing good. Still working on stuff between being motivated and being more diligent. I think we’re getting better.  

During studies this week I really came to appreciate what kind of Man the Savior was. He was perfect in that he obeyed every commandment even though he was tempted ALOT!  I used to kind of think of Him as this emotionless person but know I’m starting to realize what made him unique.  He overcame all temptations perfectly.  It’s something to strive for, to work at constantly. Being more like Him will help us all bring others unto him and live His teachings.  

Please know I think you’re all amazing.  I’m so grateful for your support in the work here. I love you and I know that My Redeemer Lives. 
 

Elder Garrett Watts
 


 
Just for Brock

 
Elders team for the regional soccer tournament.

 

November 3, 2014


November 3, 2014 

CIC BACK IN CO SPRINGS! I’m excited. The elder from Army and I had a little wager and now he owes me a DR PEPPER!  I haven’t had one in 4 months and I’m very excited. Funny stories from this week. We met someone on the street and he was wearing a Busch gardens Williamsburg hoodie.  Made me very homesick for about 28 seconds. But it’s all good. We’re gonna stop by and visit him in his house this week hopefully.  

All the investigators that were progressing kind a disappeared. Carol is living with her mom now to help out because her dad died.  Lidia was out all week in the country with her family and Graciella couldn’t make it to church this week. But we found another person named Rosa who met the missionaries back in the 70's when they were teaching English class. We found her on Saturday and she went to church with us!!!  

I was really tired this week, physically and emotionally. There’s a movie that I would invite everyone to watch by Elder Holland called the Atonement and missionary work. It’s really worth your time. Especially if you’re going through a rough patch.  

 

Also Elder Villaorroel said something this week that I really liked, "Estamos salvando el mundo Elder. No podemos hacer un mejor obra en la faz de le tierra" translation.  "We are saving the World Elder. We cannot be doing a better work on the face of the earth.”  

We are trying to reach out to more in members in our Ward. We are sharing with them that the best cure for their problems is to share the gospel. I know it’s working for me. Being a missionary is probably the best experience I’ve had in my life so far!  

I love ya bunches and I really hope all of you know that, especially you mom.  

Please pray for Lidia, Carol, Graciella and Rosa, that they can feel desires to keep progressing. I’d really appreciate it.  

Take care! 

Elder Garrett Watts
 
 
Halloween Ward Party.  We were secret agents.  Elder Villaorroel was President Obama.
 
 





 

 

October 27, 2014


October 27, 2014 
Dear Mom, 
Greetings from the ever heating up country of Chile! Kind of an oxymoron right?  
We had another good week this week. Worked al ot with members and got 2 people to come to church again. Lidia is progressing well but as far as we understand she’ll be in the country with her family this week so it will be more difficult to teach her.  
Bad news though. Carol, the single mother we’re teaching was supposed to come to church this week but her father passed away Sunday morning. It’s gonna be a difficult time for her but we will focus with the message of the Restoration and Plan of Salvation. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers. Hopefully we use this opportunity to strengthen her testimony. 
On a brighter note, We have a Halloween party this week at Church. People are weird about Halloween here.  If you dress up you automatically are a devil worshipper, so some people were hesitate to make plans to have a costume party.  It should be a good time. We’re gonna teach them all Halloween games. All we can think of is bobbing for apples. So, it might be a short teaching session.  Hopefully Carol and her son Matias can come and maybe that’ll help lift their spirits a bit.  It is very likely our costumes will be changing nametags.  A few of the people down here found the picture from my FB of when I wore the Bane mask to school and have petitioned me to bring it. Alas, it is a no mask party, just like in the States. 
OH! We found a mural with Stitch this week. Had to grab a picture. Also in Chile they make "pancakes" here, put ice cream inside and then roll it up like a peanut butter roll up. Not gonna lie, I think they might be onto something here.  
Also, AF v ARMY next week if understand correctly? Let’s go Falcons!  
Thanks for all the support and love you give. You’re the best!  
Elder Garrett Watts 
 

 
 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

October 20, 2014


October 20, 2014 

Dear mom,
AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH GRANT's HERE AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!! Congratulations Mel, Ben and Brock!!!!!!  Please tell them I love and miss them!!!
Well, now that I got that out of the way, looks like it was a good week both north and south of the equator!

We actually had a really great week. We had so many members go with us to appointments this week and WE HAD TWO PEOPLE ATTEND  CHURCH!!!  One of them is named Lidia. This sweet little old lady wants to get baptized on the 15th of November.  Please keep her in your prayers that she can keep progressing and feel ready to be baptized when the date comes. She’s 85 years old so I think the hardest part will be getting her literally under the water. Old people do not like to be completed submerged underwater. This is probably the best week I’ve had on my mission so far. Now just to figure out what we did different this week and keep it up.
I thought this was worth sharing. We found a single mom named Carol and her 4 year old Mathias this week. I couldn’t help but feel a strong connection to her. OBVIOUS REASONS. But anyways she’s progressing slowly.  She had a baptismal date for the 15 but didn’t make it to church so this week were going to focus on introducing her to members so she can make friends and feel more comfortable coming to Church.  Also we are hoping to relate EVERYTHING to eternal families because what brings her the most joy is Mathias.
Here’s some photos to make up for the drought. Elder Ospina left for Talcohuano and Elder Villarroel got here from the other side of Chillan. Also. NO we will not go HOME! Except Elder Jensen, who goes home at the end of this cambio. Ha, funny.
Got the Halloween package. We destroyed it. All gone in 3 days. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!! You’re seriously the best mom.
Whatever we did this week I know we can be better. There is always, always always room for improve.
All my best, 

Elder Watts
 
 
I'll miss you Elder Opsina

 
My new companion, Elder Villarroel

 
No we won't go home!  We love the Chilean people!!!
 

October 13, 2014


October 13, 2014 

Mom,  

Full week! I got my new companion Elder Villarroel from Antofagosta Chile! He’s got about a year and 3 months in the mission. Katherine has unfortunately been very difficult to get a hold of, so we haven’t been able to teach her or help her this week. But we made a new effort to contact lots of people every day. Our daily goal is to find 5 future investigators (basically get 5 different addresses to visit). For the most part it’s helping.  We’re setting a lot of dates and we are seeing a couple people we found together this last week. Elder Villarroel is awesome.  We are basically complete opposite personality wise. He’s quite, I’m loud.  He likes to pretty up his sentences, I’m straight to the point. He’s SUUUUUPER patient and I lack in that area. But we balance each other well. He is still learning the new sector so I’m junior companion with all the responsibilities of senior companion.  The dude is a handy man. He’s already fixed like 5 different problems we had in the house that we had just chalked up to being like that forever.  

One thing that makes Villarroel awesome is that this last February, his father passed away and that was obviously very hard on him but he decided to stay and finish the work the Lord has called him to do.  He doesn’t have a lot of self-confidence and as you well know I probably have too much. So this cambio our goals are to try to strengthen our weaknesses by helping the other with theirs.  

One cool story we had this week is that we have been visiting a menos activa called Maria Lucia, about 60 years old.  She is a habitual smoker. She’s tried to quit multiple times and she’s been denying herself the sacrament because she doesn’t want people to judge her if she is smoking. We focused with her on the fact that if you’re trying, and I mean REALLY trying to quit the bad habit or addiction, the sacrament can help you.  It can help you have to spirit you need to finally kick the habit. But we also taught her the importance of making a plan as well as taking the sacrament. She responded "but isn’t it  more important that I have the plan in my heart and mind" and I said yes.  It is very important to have the plan right there, but I also know that we as humans are not the most concrete in our decisions, and that if you make a plan, something written down that you can see, when it comes to the point of temptation, you’re less likely to give into that temptation. She said "huh... when you put it like that, it sounds exactly what I need to do."  Now you have to understand that this woman is STUBBORN!  I can relate because I am that way as well at times. But it was awesome to see the Spirit work in her and us to help her understand the importance of what we were inviting her to do.  

We continue to work, walk, and  talk with everybody. Like literally everybody. I don’t want to possibly miss someone who might be being prepared by the Lord to receive us.  So we take every opportunity to contact people. 

I love you all and thank you so much for everything you do for me. You’re emails are very uplifting and I really appreciate all you’ve done for me.  

Elder Watts

Thursday, October 9, 2014

October 6, 2014


October 6, 2014 

Hey mom,  

TAKE THAT NAVY!!!!  

Alright now that’s been said, on to the important things. Received your package of workout clothes and GARLIC HERBS!!!!  Very nice surprise. I guard that stuff with my life in the house.  

Thanks for sending something to Torrie and Tori. ALSO I have an idea for the ward but I would need a little stuffed teddy bear that looks like a missionary. Can you check into this?  Thanks.  

I got the letters from the Primary this week. please thank Sister Smith for sending them. Katie Walkers was especially hilarious. "is it Chilly in Chile? (the answer is a resounding NO now that spring has sprung), do you eat Chili in Chile? Are there Chilly Chilis in Chile?" I was very impressed with her capacity for humor at such a young age.  

This last week Elder Jensen (BYU PLAYER) and all were suuuuuuuper sick. Stomach virus knocked us right in the gut. We were sleeping by the toilet for a couple nights. But all is well now and were working again, lost a couple more pounds but they were coming off anyways.  

Other wise this week was good. Katherine our investigator is finally living by herself but now she doubts that she’ll be able to keep the law of chastity or Word of Wisdom.  So she doesn’t want to be baptized soon. We just need to kind and encouraging and find out which spiritual tool we need to use to help her see the light (following President Uchtdorf’s talk from conference) 

https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/receiving-a-testimony-of-light-and-truth?lang=eng
 

Elder Ospina is leaving me!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! He heads off to Talcuano centro tomorrow and Elder Villaroel will be coming to replace and be my new comp. it is a bery bittersweet feeling. Elder Ospina and I got along very well together and it may be difficult to adjust to Elder Villaroel but the Lord gives us challenges for a reason right?  

General Conference was amazing. 10 hours never went by so fast. I really liked the talk given by Jorg Klebingat about the 6 things for peaceful assurance. It’s fairly obvious that I am not having the most baptism or people progress, but I know that by following the 6 steps he talked about and by applying the Atonement in my life and the lives of my investigators, I will be more self-assured  of the good that I’m doing in the world. 
 
https://www.lds.org/general-conference/2014/10/approaching-the-throne-of-go-with-confidence?lang=eng
 
ALSO IF ANY NON-LDS (not mormon) person is reading this, PLEASE watch ELDER DAVID A BEDNAR from the last session of general conference.  Please, it’ll take 10 minutes but it might change your life. 
 

We have a lot of changes coming up, and I’m glad to have the opportunity to experience them. I love all of you and remember from the very deepest part of my soul....  

Elder Watts
 
Elder Jensen's last Sunday
We will miss him!!!

Chillan Zone farewell to Elder Jensen

Chillan Zone PDay

My new companion, Elder Villaroel Almorzando
 

September 29, 2014


September 29, 2014

 

Hey mom, So glad to hear that the party for Ben went off without a hitch!  

MORE EXCITED TO HERE WE BEAT BOISE STATE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  

Should find out if I got the package tomorrow, zone leaders are down in conce today. Elder Ospina finally requested sour candy. ,Like the sourest stuff you can find if you haven’t already sent the Halloween box. How is the photo book coming along? :)  

So these last two weeks I’ve learned something of utter importance. Chileans are busy! Almost everyone we talk to is "really in a hurry" or has "something to do" like watch TV for example...or perhaps watch a kid watching tv.  

One of the few Chileans we talked to this week that wasn’t busy really didn’t like gringos. His name was Ramon, and we was convinced that God was punishing the US because we had hurricanes. He said that i should "tell your friend Osama (he meant Obama) that we shouldn’t be taking the Palestinian’s petroleum" Elder Ospina and I had a great laugh about that later on in the day.  

So this week we had a mini cambio and a mini mission. Mini cambio basically means we switch companions for a day, and a mini mission is when we teach some of the priests from the stake what a day in the life of a missionary is like. My companion was named Oscar and he had just got baptized like 3 months ago and he really wanted to go serve a mission. He lacked a little bit of the finesse in talking to people in the street but that comes with time. We worked in a "city" called Quill√≥n about an hour south of us. STRAIGHT FARM LAND. and it was raining and we forgot all our rain stuff. It was a really good experience for him. He said he learned a lot and I was happy to be able to help him get a taste of the mission life.  

In the mini cambio I was with Elder Chuctaya, a Peruvian that has been with me since the CCM in Santiago. We had a great day and I learned a lot about how to get members to accompany us. Chucky (his nickname in the mission house) can literally get a member at any hour of the day. or at least it seems.  

This week i was studying a lot about the Plan of Salvation and how God is our Heavenly Father and he really loves us. HE LOVES US.  He puts up with a lot of our crud too. We know that the plan applies to everyone, and that everyone will be saved, hence the plan of salvation. But I like to think of it as the plan of Exaltation, because that’s the goal right? It’s like the difference in aiming high or aiming for the minimum. Heavenly father wants us to have Exaltation, but because he loves us, he knows that it should be our choice.  

Other than that, another standard week here in Chillan Chile. Cambios are next week. We shall see if Elder Ospina and I will remain together again or if there’s a change. Elder Jensen, the BYU linebacker is heading home this Sunday so well be having a mini cambio together this week. I think it’s gonna be a good time.  


All my love and So much more, 
 
Elder Watts
 
 
Elder Chuctaya
 
Ramon
 
Ramon CTR (Choose the Right)
 
Quillon
 
Sep 30 Zone Meeting
 
Lunch with Elder Opsina
 
Zona Chillan
 
Quillon

 
 

September 22, 2014


September 22, 2014

 Independece day are was actually kind of disappointing.  Sorry no pictures this week. The computer I have doesn’t have a USB port :/  

This week I finished studying the first lesson with an emphasis on using the BOM to answer questions about the Restoration. We know that Bible lost key parts and that the BOM is the evidence of the restoration of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  

We had an awesome activity with Kites but again, no pictures.  It was awesome. We got our kite like 450 meters away… or more… but lost it.  Hopefully it’s still flying out there somewhere.  

Brock’s birthday is this week!  Please give him something from me. :) I’m gonna bring stuff back for him but obviously that won’t get to him until he’s almost 4.  

Elder Ospina is doing tons better. It’s like he was never even sick.  

Sorry not have much to update.  Not a ton of lessons this week. We gave a lesson to a member’s less active friend.  The member really knows her scriptures. It was a first lesson so she kind of confused the guy we were trying to teach. It made me think about how Christ taught, using stories, using situations that people already understood,  than applied it to their own lives.  

Anyways, Katherine finally got a weekend off and made it to church.  This week we’re going to focus on how it’s more important for her to move out to keep the commandments than to just move out cuz she wants to. I’ll let you know how that goes.  

I too am reading Jesus the Christ and let me tell ya, that book makes ya think.  

I love ya mom!  

Love you tons mom. Please know that despite the lack of progressing investigators I’m still my happy goofy self.  Kind of annoys Ospina a little but he can deal. LOVE YOU!!!!!! 

 

Elder Garrett Watts