Monday, September 28, 2015

Hello family,
I am finally over my cold. Just a stuffy nose remains (I have become a handkerchief missionary).A few more quakes, no more interested people, and a lot more sun. It gets hot here. I have to start using sun screen again. We have had a lot of earthquakes but yes the latest was just 6 on the Rictor Scale. It is not even considered a true earthquake here unless it is more than 7. We are also waiting for a super earthquake of 9.5 which would be the strongest in recorded history but they have been waiting 20 years and nothing has happened yet so don't worry too much.

Sadly our Papito has still not made it to church. We are working on it but one step at a time. We have a consistent number of attendance but each week there are different people. If everyone would come at the same time then we could have a good attendance.

This week we had several investigators with good questions from the scriptures. THEY ARE FINALLY READING! We also have 4 or 5 new families that said we should pass by to share. Good things are on the horizon.

I am glad that Jake had a good birthday party. Next year he can show me how to use those paddle board things.
I have no idea how many missionaries are on Easter Island. My mission map says that it is part of this mission but really it is part of Santiago North. Go figure.

I was sad to hear about the passing of Elder Scott. I wonder if they will announce a third apostle for this conference or wait until the conference in April.

Last night we had a cool show in the sky. First there was a "mega luna" where the moon looks huge. Then we had "la luna de sangre" where the moon turned red due to an eclipse. I tried to take pictures but my camera did not want to work with me. Oh well.

Good to know that I have at least 10 dates lined up for when I get home :-P  Unless they all get married before I get back but hey. That is the way it goes in the Singles Ward. I am glad that you guys are staying busy. It not only makes time pass faster but it also makes a life more fulfilling. Here in the mission I have seen Wards and Branches but Single Wards do not exist here. It will be interesting to get home and see the difference. 

Please tell Lindsey and the Triplets Happy Birthday for me. Thank you!

Anyway, I am doing well. This weekend is General Conference and Transfers so I will be busy. Should be interesting. I love you all. Take care and God bless.

Con mucho amor, Elder Brock Hunter

Monday, September 21, 2015

Hi family,

I am doing a bit better. When I wake up my throat hurts but then during the day I am fine. I did get sunburned today shooting penalties with a soccer ball though. Gotta love Chilean weather.

The miracle of the week would have to be the party we had on Thursday as a Branch. We had several investigators and less active members attend. Even our Papito showed up! That was outstanding to see. He still has not come to church but one step at a time.

From what we have heard the earthquake was 8.3 at the epicenter. We felt it here in Vallenar but it was not as strong. (yes, Vallenar is the most south of the mission) It was very long though. And that is scary because you dont know if it will get worse. We were in the chapel preparing for the activities when it happened. Vallenar is far from the coast but there were several cities affected by the tsunami that the earthquake caused.

On Thursday we had an activity as a Branch. We ate chorripanes (sausage) and played traditional chilean games. I cut my hand with rope burn during the tug-of-war but it was fun. I am learning to use a trompo which is like a chilean beyblade. On Friday we went to the District Center and participated in the activity there. They had each Branch prepare a presentation for a part of Chile (the south, the north, the center, and the islands). Each Branch had the typical food and a typical dance for their area. Sadly there was not time to play games. Our Branch was in charge of the Islands (specifically Easter Island). I have not been able to upload pictures recently but I will try to send some today.

For bills and stuff like that I can pay with mission funds and get a reimbursement later. That means that I have no money for this month but next month I will be rich.

Happy Birthday to Jake and Grandma Hunter. Also, I recieved the package of sunshine. Thanks for the cutout of Jake, though I was suprised by all the yellow. My companion wants to know if he also gets one of the frisbies. I am working on sending a package home as well. I have too much stuff and not enough space. We also do not have a vacuum so a space bag would not help much. But really, some things have broken in my bags because they get smashed between things (for example, some protection charms that I recieved last Christmas got smashed and one of the stones broke. not a good sign)

I hope that everyone is doing well and that you can recognize the blessings of God in your lives. Take care.

Con mucho amor, Elder Brock Hunter

Hey Kate,
The earth was moving back and forth during the earthquake. This one was not so jerky, it was more like a rocking sensation. Everyone here is fine. Elder Acosta and I get along most of the time. And yes, some companions are harder to get to know than others. I managed to kill three fleas this week between my fingernails. That seems to be the only sure fire way to kill them because I have not been bitten recently.

I have no idea how I have changed during the mission, let alone how much. I am a bit fatter but not so much that you can notice. I have no idea if I will have a get sexy plan before I end my mission or not. For now I am fine. We shall see what happens later. Each day we have 30 minutes in the morning to exercise. Not much but it is something.

My comp, Elder Acosta, saw the picture of you and your soccer teammates. He loves girls who like soccer so he wants you to set him up with one of your friends. He said any of them will do. He says he is from Peru, he is 19 years old, before the mission he worked out a lot and played on a professional soccer team, and he is currently learning to speak english. Just in case any of your friends are interested.

Anyway, keep up the hard work at school and in sports. Take care yourself sis. Dont worry about me, I have the Lords protection (though I am not about to go and try anything stupid either).
con amor, Elder Hunter

Monday, September 14, 2015

Dear family,
I do in fact know Tanner Mangum. He was the Assistant to the President here in the mission so EVERYONE knew him. He is a big guy with a bigger heart. I am glad to hear that he is doing well at BYU.

Here on the mission, several missionaries always mention movies made by members of the church like the Singles Ward, The RM, God´s Army, ect and I realized that I had not seen most of them. Or if I have, it was a long time ago. I have a few of the videos on a pendrive now thanks to other missionaries but I cannot watch them here on the mission. I can only watch videos BY the Church. So when I get home I will be having a movie marathon.

Congrats to Wendy and Tommy for being sealed. That is amazing, and what every missionary hopes for his converts.

Tell my grandparents that I love them.

Tell Jake that I did not even know that elementary school had a school council. And that for his birthday he should learn something new. Do something different.

I got on the church website and I saw a link for that talks about Tim Gates. I thought it was pretty cool to see someone that I had met. The world really is small, especially when you are a Mormon.

I currently have no money because I had to buy a tank of gas worth 43 thousand pesos. I will get a reimbursement from the mission but in about a month because I have to send the papers in. I believe it was worth it because otherwise we could not cook or have hot showers. And I like food and hot showers. Well, at least I already had food and this week we will eat a lot of bbq because it is Chile´s Independence Day. Definetly a good week to look forward to.

I do not know what else to say so take care everyone. I love you.
Elder Hunter

You play guitar now!? Since when!? 

I have no idea how the different teams are doing here in Chile. Sorry. As missionaries we kicked goals at each other 3 weeks ago. And I can' tell you how long it has been since I played basketball. 

I woke up this morning with a cold. Everyone tells me that my voice sounds weird (it dropped, like it always does when I get sick).

Your schedule is worse than the missionary schedule. I am not jealous.

This week was good but VERY hot. I was burned but my companion just turned a darker shade of brown. He thinks I am making fun of him when I say that but I really am jealous. The most interesting investigator story of the week is when we passed by an investigators house to visit and they invited us in. The fun part was that they were having a party and people were drinking and smoking all kinds of things. We got out of there pretty fast and we plan on teaching the Word of Wisdom and the Law of Chastity as soon as possible. We pass by according to the schedules of the investigators. I like to pass by 2 or 3 times a week if we can.

As missionaries we have to work with those who are receptive. We could be great friends with investigators or with less active members but we cannot afford to waste time with people who refuse to change or to listen. We always try to help and we always have to be persistent. But if they do not want anything then that is their decision. Everyone has their agency. I am here to tell you that it is one of the most difficult decisions to stop visiting someone that you have come to love but sometimes it is for their good.

 Take care sis. Love ya.
Elder Hunter

Monday, September 7, 2015

First off, I want to wish my Parents a very happy aniversary. Secondly, I am VERY happy that Canyon View beat Cedar in Football. FINALLY!

I want you all to know that I am praying for all of you individually, especially those that are sick or struggling with other problems.
Sometimes we feel like nothing is happening like we want it to and we just wonder why. Then God reminds us that He has a plan and he knows how to make it work. This week we were having a hard time getting people to keep their appointments. Then, out of nowhere, a less active guy knocks on OUR door and asks us to go to his house and visit his family. He and his wife want to come back to church. They have a complicated marriage situation but they want to make things right before God. They were asking us some questions that we did not quite know how to answer but with the help of some local leaders we believe we can help them have a temple marriage and get sealed to their kids.

We also invited people to participate in activities and they did not show up. For example, on Wednesday we invited investigators to come to the chapel to learn to dance the cueca (cueca is the national dance of Chile. PS does the US even have a national dance?). Several said yes but no one showed up so in the end we had to leave. But then God came in. One of our investigators, Jackeline Vega, did not show up to the classes of cueca but she showed up an hour later to the choir practice and decided to participate. Long story short, the next day there was a Choir Competition in the Chapel in Centro and she participated with our Branch. (and we participated too without ever practicing the songs) Then she came to church on Sunday along with her son Diego who is 10 years old. The other missionaries always invited her to come but she never showed up. Now she is coming to activities and to church. We are seeing some great things that just suprise us.
In other news, I have some new items to add to my food list. This past week we recieved 2 liters of goat milk, a wheel of goat cheese, and 4 duck eggs. All for free. The goat dairy items we recieved from a recent convert named Yerelyn and the duck eggs we got from our Clothes Mamita. We had to boil the goat milk before we drank it and then we added sugar to it. It was actually really good. The goat cheese is good... but not my favorite. The duck eggs were harder than chicken eggs and had a larger yolk. The taste was just a little different. Not too much to notice.
That should be it for now. I love you guys and I hope that all is well. Trust in God. Have faith. It really works miracles.
Con amor, Elder Brock Hunter