Monday, August 31, 2015

August 10, 2015

Dear mom,
I imagine you’re tired after the week in camp. I too am feeling a bit under the weather. It’s has been rainy and windy almost every day this last week.  I’m little tired physically and mentally. I am working to get Elder Bowden up to speed in the sector so he can help me.  He’s doing fantastic.  He's got a real motor on him! I am accustomed to have a more senior missionary then me as my companion.  So it’s weird being the one who is remembering everything, doing the phone calls, etc. He has progressed miles in his language though. The next challenge is getting him comfortable using the phone! It’s a lot different when you can’t see someone’s lips and hand motions.  But I know he’ll do good.
As a mission we started BOM over together. We’re on 1st Nephi 20. It called my attention to how much I respect Nephi had for his father when his bow broke. Lehi was complaining, Laman and Lemuel were being the typical antagonists.  Even though Lehi was complaining, Nephi followed courtesy, the chain of command, respect for his father, whatever you want to call it, and asked him where he should go to find food. WHY???? Things like this make me ponder on how to be more like those men of the scriptures, men of character and honor!
Pamela and Gonzalo are committed to go get a date of matrimony this week at the civil registry!  Fingers crossed that its before I leave!!!!!  I really care about them a ton and know that we’ll be friends for a long time! They’re simply good people.
Something else that has crossed my mind, despite the fact the Chilean’s have a different culture and different values and all sorts of things that bother me sometimes or I don’t understand... I love the Chilean people. I love serving them and being here. I wouldn’t trade this for anything! I LOVE BEING A MISSIONARY!

Have a great week!

Elder Watts

August 3, 2015

August 3, 2015
So glad you had a fun week. I too have noticed the power of hymns. Whenever we enter a house and we can’t find anything to teach, I try to sing a hymn and usually some inspiration comes!
This week has been different! I’m still getting the groove as far as being a trainer. I’m really trying to make sure Elder Bowden is learning and progressing, but the language is a big challenge for him. Its weird teaching Spanish!!! I understand that it’s really hard for him. He is progressing with his language like I couldn’t have hoped for! The first day jitters seem to be gone and now we’re starting to get in a better groove as a companionship. Found out that he was the drum major in his high school band and that his dad builds replacement spines! How crazy is that!
This week, as a companionship we have been trying to be more grateful for the blessing we have received! We really have started to notice more how many blessings we receive when we pay special attention to be grateful for all of them. Makes me think how ungrateful I was before the mish. Mom, thank you for all the sacrifices you made and make for me! I am forever in debt to the Savior as well, and I’m so grateful for His Atonement!
D&C 78:17-19 was the scripture of the week! Take a look if ya want!
Gonzalo y Pamela came back from Chillan.  Elder Bowden invited Gonzalo to be baptized after their marriage and he accepted wholeheartedly! I felt so proud of my son!!!!  I almost shouted for joy!! Pamela is getting really active too! We eat lunch with them tomorrow even!
Sergio and Andrea are filling out their family tree and are doing well. They cant’ stay for  the entire meeting block cuz León is really cranky by the end Sacrament meeting.  But they have the desire to learn more about the Church and Temple work!
That was the week! Not too many new people, but some might develop in the next week! We shall see right?
Much love!  

Elder Watts

July 27, 2015

Hey mom!
Well cambios came in today and Elder Bennion is heading off to Linares as a zone leader! It’s gonna be hard seeing him go. We got along really well and had  alot in common.  God willing we'll be hanging out in Colorado this time next year!
I have news!!!! I’m going to be a dad! Now don’t miss understand.  Being a dad in the mission means I’m going to train someone! It’s going to be a trial by fire of whether or not I can be a good leader. I was thinking about the examples of leaders in the Book of Mormon and other scriptures. Of all the greatest is The Lord obviously! He always cared to make sure that his disciples learned and learned well, that they were taken care of, and that they had opportunities to have their faith tried and to grow even stronger. President Spencer W. Kimball gave a wonderful talk exactly on being a Christ like leader. I’ll be reviewing and it for sure!
Andrea got baptized on Saturday!  The faunt was taking a really long time to fill up so we had to start filling water in pots from an instant heater to get the water up high enough! Elder Bennion had the blessing of being able to baptize Andrea and the following day or yesterday, I was blessed with the opportunity to confirm Andrea a member of the Church and give her the Gift of the Holy Ghost! It was a wonderful experience.  One of the member family we visited with, Hna Carla Miranda, gave a fantastic talk about how the Holy Ghost has been her guide and best friend during her activation in the church! The Spirit was very strong and hopefully Sergio and Andrea will never forget that moment and how they felt!
This week in studies, I made the commitment to use a study journal. Man, I wish I had used it from the get go! I am more alert and I retain more information this way! I am currently in D&C 77.  In D&C 76 there is a lot of really intriguing information about the kingdoms of glory! In the BoM I’m working on the tree of life chapters in 1st Nephi.  I am really trying to understand the way that we can help those who are lost in the mists of darkness!
I’m excited for the change, for the opportunity to train, and hopefully for some drier weather! Have a great week at girls camp mom and stay busy!
Lots of love!
Elder Watts


July 20, 2015

Hey mom!
Andrea did come so this week we have a baptism!!!  Pray for her please and for us during this last week before she becomes a member!
Other than that the week was fairly standard, visits every day.  Still in the process of finding people that will progress in the Gospel.  The good thing is we’re actively getting into houses and not just in the street every day in the rain.
Well, we’re on the last week of the cambio and Elder Bennion is most likely out of here.  He's got 6 months in the ward. It’s been a fun 4 months with him.  Reminded me of a lot of stuff I had forgotten about serving with patience and being persistent. He's a very good young man and I look forward to this week to work hard with him.
I too am in the D&C but I’m going on section 74. I especially liked 68:2-5. It talks about how and when we are inspired by the Spirit and our words as priesthood holders are scriptures. I need a lot of work to be able to have the Spirit with me all the time.  But I’m really trying. No matter how many times I mess up or do something without thinking, I know that The Lord will be there to help me up and get better each time. While I’m striving to fix myself, I can help others realize the things they can change to feel better with God.
I know that Jesus lives and he loves us. He's willing to help when we look towards Him for that divine help.

Elder Watts


July 13, 2015

Hey! Glad to hear you’ve had a great week!
We had a bit of a slower week this week. Lots of rain so the days went by longer when we didn’t’ get invited into homes. But, we had the wonderful blessing to be able to help a woman named Ana with her groceries!  The way it works here, is when the market comes into town, you buy on that day. Well, the market came to town on the worst rainy day of the week. We were walking down the big flight of stairs and we saw this woman waiting on someone’s porch. We asked her if she needed help and she said, "no, I’ll just wait until the rain stops."  We quickly pointed out that the rain wasn’t going to stop anytime soon!  So, we picked up her bags, which were like 50 lbs each, and carried her groceries up the stairs. When Ana walked, she had a limp. We asked her what happened.  She had 4 strokes in her 50 years of life.  She was actually waiting on her brother in law to come help her with the groceries, She had been waiting for almost an hour in the pouring rain. It feels wonderful to be able to help someone in such a simple way but have a really big impact.
Our investigators were all no más this week. Pamela and Gonzalo took the family to Chillan for winter break. and Sergio and Andrea had to work a fundraiser for the foundation where they receive help with son, León. Yes, his name means LION! It’s awesome, but anyways, they didn’t have the energy to get up in the morning, so her baptism will be pushed back a week for the 25th of July! Please keep her in your prayers so that she can be baptized on the 25th!
Other than that we found a couple new people.  We will see if they want to learn more or if they were being polite to get us out of the rain
Al righty. That’s about it. Hope you have a fantastic week and keep on keeping on.
Much love,
Elder Watts

July 6, 2015

Hey mom!
This week was a good one!
I really tried not focusing on the fact that it was my one year mark because frankly there was too much other stuff to do.
Andrea came to church and feels good about her baptism on the 18th! Gonzalo and family came too. The less active woman we’re teaching got a calling in the Relief Society.  Overall we feel content for the week of work we had.
Saturday, the 4th, was a day of much juice giving (to give juice means to waste time). We had our English class, we taught about family history and learned the names of family members! Afterwards Chile was playing in the final of the world cup, so president gave the entire mission permission to see the game.  Then, I have had the opportunity to teach a football team down here once a month for the last 3 months.  Saturday was their first game! They invited all the guest coaches.  I sang the National Anthem. I folded and held the flag of the United states!
Elder Bennion and I Tare getting along well. The other elders and I also get along well. We had a shaving cream fight last night. It was good to unwind a bit. Elder Martinez and I will be starting a new cardio focused workout regimen to drop the gut down a bit! Wish us luck and energy!
Hope the 4th was a fantastic day for y’all, even though Melissa mentioned it was a bit wet!
This week while studying the Doctrine and Covenants, I found out that in chapter 42 there are several one liners that I found inspiring! Take a look at it and see if you can find some!
Got the package with shoes and journal. Thanks a ton mom!!!!
All righty, that’s about it folks. Hope ya had a great week! God bless!
Elder Watts

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

June 29, 2015

June 29, 2015
Hey mom!
First of all HAPPY BIRTHDAY AMERICA! You're 239 years old this Saturday and you’re looking great!
This week was awesome! Andrea decided she wants to get baptized! Please keep her in your prayers and that we can help her get prepared by the 18th! Also Pamela and Gonzalo came to church again! They even asked where they could buy a hymn book and a triple! AHHHHH how I love seeing the Spirit work in people! Gonzalo took a blow this week though, He got fired without cause from his job. While he was filing paperwork and talking with lawyers in Centro (downtown) every day this week, he always, ALWAYS, saw us, or the other elders. We didn’t always see him but he took it as a sign that God was really looking out for him in spite of all the crud that was going on.
This week we took some time to go meet the members that live up on the peninsula of Tumbes.  There are a companion of other elders assigned to this area but we’re starting to work better as a unit of 4 that we want do get to know the members out there. There is one partial family that is progressing well, Carlos (inv) and Caroline (member). They went traveling to visit family because Carlos is a marine and had leave, but he really knows that the church is true, and is mostly hesitating because of what his family might say. But we taught all of them, the members and that family, a lesson about following the voice of the Spirit and not that of the world. I thought that regarding the news of the Supreme Court decision, now more than ever, we need to tune in spiritually and stand up for what is morally right and true. I believe the Family is a sacred thing, and that it is something that needs to be defended. That anything outside of a husband and wife is an outright mockery of the gift that our bodies and the ability God gave us to bring life into the world.
This week I have been reading in the Doctrine and Covenants, and I liked a verse that talked about, all the commandments are spiritual in nature.  Yes some of them involve a higher state of bodily living, but that in turn is to affect our spirit. I know this to be true. That our body and spirit are so closely connected that anything we do to one affects the other in due change.
Well, this week we’re going to be visiting Andrea a lot.  Also we found a bunker to explore like battery cave in Maine!  We’ll check that out next Monday.
I don’t feel like I have a year left. The time goes by way too fast. I still have too much to do before I come home.
Elder Watts

June 21, 2015

June 21, 2015

Elder Villarroel thinks you´re the best!  We were talking because he heads home at the end of this cambio.  We noticed that time flies really fast.
This week was awesome, we worked extremely well with the members and visited with a different member almost every day. We also had the blessing of being able to find a couple of new people to teach, Pamela and Gonzalo made it to church, along with the kids. They involved themselves almost instantly. The best part about all of that is we left them with a copy of "The Family: A Proclamation to the World" and they LOVED IT!  We will focus on encouraging them to get married.
This week I really have felt the spirit, especially during our English classes. We taught the principles of prayer in English. Our Bishop’s wife is SO DEDICATED!  She has from the beginning of class greet us with (the little English she knows and her pronunciation is perfect! Hopefully the class keeps growing and we can use it to find new people to teach!
We had the blessing to be able to view part of the Copa America, in the home of Pamela y Gonzalo. IT was a really good game, Chile won 5-0 over Bolivia. They advanced to the quarter finals and play this week! VIVA CHILE!!!!
The new elder in the house, Elder Martinez, is a MMA fighter and motorcycle lover from Distrito Federal en Mexico. We all 4 get along very well. I haven’t laughed as much as I have this week on the entire mission.  Hopefully we can keep it up. Today we watched the sunrise after we picked up laundry and I thought how right Elder Bednar was when he said “the light of Christ is more like the sunrise, the gradual illumination which scatters all the darkness.”
I also saw a cool parallel with the path to heaven, Paul said the streets were paved of gold right. Have you ever seen the sunlight shining upon the water at daybreak. It’s like a straight, narrow path of gold leading to the warmth and glory of the sun. Just some cool things passing through my head.
Well, hopefully this week we have an even better week. Glad to hear all is well on the home front.
 I love ya bunches.

June 15, 2015

June 15, 2015
HEY Mom!
This week was another good wet week! Started the Academy process and I could "go home" in a year form this Thursday, so ‘im pretty trunky! I will overcome!
Elder Bennion and I will be together for ANOTHER 6 weeks, there were cambios and we stayed the same. So this will be the longest I’ve ever been with a comp. This is the third time for him that this has happened.

This week’s noche de capilla was really good. Almost 60 people came, including the Art family we’re teaching Pamela (member), her boyfriend Gonzalo and their 2 kids, Martin(9) and Mateo(6)
They seemed to have a blast!  But they had company show up on Sunday morming and couldn’t come to church. They hope to get married this winter (summer here). 

The coldest day this week we had some extra time so we decided to go out on the pier and take pictures of the city from the other side of the harbor. When we got there we found a man that was really bad off. And he even told us "how did you know I was here? Art you angels?" We since haven’t been able to meet with him again but that experience really got to me and let me know God knows when we need a boost or when we’re possibly at a the point of making a drastic decision that we'd regret later. It made me think of the Christmas movie, It’s a Wonderful Life, where the bell rings and you know the angel gets his wings. It is awesome to be the tool the Lord uses to help others.
THIS WEEK I FINISHED THE BOOK OF MORMON for the first time by myself ever… and in Spanish!  It is a true book. What it teaches comes from God and I invite others to read and ask God if these things are not true, like Moroni exhorted us to do. I am now starting in Doctrine and Covenants! More knowledge and counsel lays in store!

Have a great week!!!!

Elder Watts