Saturday, December 26, 2009

Sister Sleepover at the Mission Home . . .

After the Christmas Choir Concert in Osorno, Susie invited the sisters that had participated to a sleepover at the Mission Home. They are a great group of missionaries, but I don´t think they slept very much. I finally went to bed at midnight and they were still making lots of noise and being silly. I know they had a lot of fun.

In a more sedate moment we took a picture the following morning. From l-r are Susie, Hna Burningham from Layton, UT, Hna Stout from Plainfield, IN, Hna Rivas from El Salvador, Hna Bourne from SLC, UT, Hna Aguilar from El Salvador, Hna Guevara from El Salvador, Hna Aponte from Argentina, Hna Porter from Heber, AZ, Hna McClellan from Fallbrook, CA and Hna McMasters from West Valley City, UT.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Choir in Osorno . . .

Every year the missionaries in the Osorno area participate with the local members in a Chritmas Choir concert in the Osorno town plaza. It is an exciting opportunity for greater exposure for the church in our community and the missionaries enjoy the experience. We are blessed with such wonderful musical talent in the mission and in the church here, so it is always well received. We were afraid it might rain, but the weather cooperated and the concert was a great success.

After the concert was over our missionary group gathered for a final photo. What a talented group of missionaries.

The stage in the photo above is set with the combined missionary and member choir.

Hna Porter from Heber, AZ and Hna McClellan from Fallbrook, CA sang the Spanish version of my favorite Primary Hymn: "I Wonder When He Comes Again." It was beautiful. Elder Poujol from Honduras is playing the piano.

Elder Noble from Mesa, AZ and Hna Burningham from Layton, UT also presented a special musical number. Two wonderfully blended voices.
The missionary choir. Two young ladies, Vanessa and Camilla, who are friends of ours that are now taking the discussions also participated in the choir. They are in the lower center next to Hna McMasters with the bagpipes.

How many missions are blessed with someone who can play the bagpipes, and play them so beautifully. From l-r: Hna Harper from Blackfoot, ID, Susie, and Hna McMasters from West Valley City, UT.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Talented Missionaries . . .

Our Sister Missionaries are not only diligent and inspired, but talented too. This is Hna McClellan from Fallbrook, CA and Hna Burningham from Layton, UT. Enjoy!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

November Cambios . . .

We had a wonderful group of 10 new missionaries arrive this week. The picture above was taken after their arrival at the Osorno Airport. Fortunately, it was a sunny day. The rain waited until it was time for them to leave to work the next day.

These are our new missionaries. Seated from l-r are: Elder Guillén from Peru, Elder Amaya from Mexico, Elder Andía from Argentina and Elder Muñoz from Chile. Standing l-r are: Elder Matorell one of our AP´s, Elder Quispe from Peru, Elder Navarro from Chile, Elder Cornejo from Chile, Elder McGowan from Mississippi, Elder Cooper from Utah, Elder Meza from Peru, Elder Miner one of our AP´s and Elder Bigelow from Arizona who will replace Elder Matorell as our second Assistant.

Unfortunately, as always we had to say good-bye to those missionaries finishing their mission. They were only 5, but they were 5 of the best missionaries anywhere. Included in this group are zone leaders, district leaders, a branch president and a true Angel. It just breaks my heart having to say good-bye to these exeptional missionaries. On the other hand, I am so proud of their faithful service and know that they will be a great blessing when they return home. We hope so much to see them again. Seated with us is that wonderful angel, Hna Alvarez from Argentina. Standing l-r are: Elder Bigelow, one of our AP´s, Elder Ribera from Bolivia, Elder Rodriguez from Panama, Elder Gobetti from Argentina, Elder Messer from Centerville, Utah and Elder Miner, our other AP.

As mentioned above, after serving for 7.5 months, Elder Matorell has been released as one of our Assistants. He has been assigned as one of the Zone Leaders in the Puerto Montt Zone. He has been so helpful. We will miss him very much. Our new Assistant will be Elder Bigelow from Gilbert, Arizona. He will serve with Elder Miner from Bountiful, Utah.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Mission President´s Seminar . . .

Susie and I with Elder Bednar and his wife.

Susie and I with Elder Snow and his wife.

Susie and I with the others who arrived with us back in June, 2008. Left to Right: Pte Joe Swenson and his wife (Concepción South Mission), Pte Michael May and his wife (Santiago North Mission). We will always be connected because of our service together.

As you can see, the conference was held in a nice setting. Viña del Mar is a beautiful place and we are grateful to be able to see this part of Chile.

Each year there is a Mission President´s Seminar for all the Mission Presidents in Chile with the Area Presidency and other visiting authorities. This year the conference was held in Viña del Mar, which is a beautiful location on the ocean. Elder Bednar of the Quorum of the Twelve and Elder Snow of the Presidency of the Seventy and their wives were here, as well as our Area Presidency and their wives. (last year we had Elder Scott of the Twelve and Elder Gonzalez of the Presidency of the Seventy)

This conference is a great blessing for us. We love being with the other mission presidents and their wives and receiving such inspired training and counsel from these great leaders. I cannot tell you how wonderful it was to be taught be Elder Bednar. He and Elder Snow, their wives and the Area Presidency gave us four days of inspired instruction. We will never forget it. What a wonderful blessing for us and for our mission.

Trip to Santiago . . .

Left to Right: Elder Rubio, Elder Pinto and his wife Maria José, Elder Didier, Hna Retamal, Elder Vergara, Elder Salvatierra and Elder Riviera

Left to Right: Elder Riviera, Elder Quezada, Elder Leal, Elder Torres and Elder Serradell

Left to Right: Elder Vergara, Elder Leal, Hna Iribarra, Elder Salvatierra and Elder Quezada
Susie and I went to Santiago this past week for our annual Mission President´s Seminar. (I´ll post more on this later) We enjoyed the opportunity to get together with several of our former missionaries. The highlight was being able to enjoy a temple session with a few of them. Four of our former missionaries are currently serving in the temple, and it was an unforgettable experience being with them in the temple. We love these missionaries and I can´t tell you how much it meant being able to be with them again.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Second Round of October Cambios . . .

We received a couple of extra missionaries this cambio out of cycle. We were very excited to get them as we lost a couple of missionaries who had to go home early. This was a real blessing for us. Pictured above l-r are Elder Miner our assistant, Elder Muñoz and Elder Pereira, both from Santiago, Chile and Elder Matorell our other assistant. Both of these Elders had originally been called to serve in Venezuela, but Visa problems resulted in their being reassigned to our mission.
And today we welcomed Elder Gatica from Rengo, Chile. He was scheduled to come so we had been planning on his arrival. It is especially nice to get a group of Chileans to help in the missionary work in Chile. Our number of Chilean missionaries is now up to 20.

The current contingent of missionaries is as follows. This is quite a change from a year ago when our USA missionaries made up only one-third of our missionaries.

Argentina - 9 ........................... Bolivia - 4
Canada - 1 ................................ Chile - 20
Colombia - 2 ............................ Ecuador - 5
El Salvador - 5 ........................ Honduras - 8
Nicaragua - 2 .......................... Panama - 4
Paraguay - 1 ........................... Peru - 5
Uruguay - 2 ............................ USA - 78

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

P-Day with the Sisters . . . .

Yesterday was Preparation Day in the Mission and Susie invited the Sister Missionaries in the Osorno area over to enjoy baking in the kitchen and having fun. I was able to get a few pictures of them enjoying the day together. We have 22 sister missionaries in the mission now and it was fun to have these 10 at our home for a few hours. Those on the bottom from l-r are: Hna McClellan from California, Hna Stout from Indiana, Hna Whisenhunt from Las Vegas, and Susie. On the second row from l-r are: Hna Aguilar from El Salvador, Hna Alvarez from Argentina and Hna Bourne from Salt Lake City. On the third row from l-r are: Hna Aponte from Argentina and Hna Rivas from El Salvador. On top is Hna Burningham from Utah and standing to the left is Hna Porter from Arizona. (note the school girls next door laughing as they watch our missionaries play) We are blessed with great missionaries and our sister missionaries are the best.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

October Cambios . . .

We have a new group of missionaries that arrived this week. All of them are from the United States and they seem like the most wonderful group of young men and a wonderful sister. We are very excited to have them in our mission and we expect big things from them.

Here are the new missionaries. Seated from l-r are: Elder Lugo - McAllen, TX, Hna Bourne - SLC, UT, Elder Jefferson - SLC, UT. Standing l-r are: Elder Matorell one of our assistants, Elder Miner - Morgan, UT, Elder Christensen - Thatcher, AZ, Elder Welling - Beaverton, OR, Elder Hansen - Hamden, CT, Elder Sheahan - Hamilton, MT, Elder Coles - SLC, UT, Elder Walker - Idaho Falls, ID and Elder Miner our other assistant. Elder Welling is one of triplet brothers who all came to Chile at the same time to serve their mission. I believe his brothers are in the Santiago East and Rancagua Missions.

Unfortunately, with new missionaries arriving it means we will be losing missionaries who have completed their service. We lost some incredible missionaries in this cambio and I just can´t express how difficult their leaving is for us. Seated from l-r are: Elder Trejos - Columbia, Hna Vallejos - Peru, Hna Torrico - Bolivia, Elder Villanueva - Peru. Standing l-r are: Elder Bleuler - Argentina, Elder Cudahy - Washington, Elder Bazan - Argentina, Elder Callaú - Bolivia, Elder Miner and Elder Matorell our assistants, and Elder Wohlfart - Germany. There are not words nor sufficient space to express my love and appreciation for these wonderful missionaries.

Additional changes this transfer include releasing Elder Dudley from Boise, ID as our mission secretary. He has been such a wonderful blessing to our office and to me personally. He will be one of our zone leaders in Valdivia now. We will miss him but are grateful for his continued service.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Zone Leader´s Council September 2009 . . .

Every other transfer we hold a Zone Leader´s Council with the Zone Leaders in our mission. Unfortunately, we are only able to bring up the 4 Zone Leaders from Punta Arenas and Coyhaique a couple of times during the year. Yesterday we held the council at the mission home and spent the day with these great young men.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

August Cambios . . .

Sorry that the airport picture didn`t turn out very good. It was a typical rainy day. We were hurrying so they wouldn`t get too wet and it looks like the lens was steamed a bit.

Here is our wonderful new group of missionaries. Seated with us is Hermana Aponte from Argentina. Standing l-r are: Elder Matorell one of our assistants, Elder Hunsaker from Wyoming, Elder Nikolaus from Arizona, Elder Jensen from Alaska, Elder Evans from Idaho, Elder Valentine from Utah, Elder Cook from Utah, Elder Urias from Honduras, Elder Sanford from Idaho, Elder Gonzalez from Chile, Elder Ciquero from Peru, Elder Carrizo from Chile and Elder Miner our other AP.

This was an incredible group of missionaries to lose from the mission. Every one of the Elders is either a district leader or zone leader and the sister is simply one of the most humble and dedicated sister missionaries anywhere. Seated with us is Hermana Rojas from Bolivia. Standing l-r are: Elder Matorell our assistant, Elder Ortiz from Chile, Elder Millan from Argentina, Elder Lopez from Peru, Elder Smith from Arizona, Elder Viti from Argentina, Elder Aravena from Chile, Elder Galindo from Bolivia, Elder Saade from Argentina, Elder Palmer from Washington, Elder Chavez from Peru and Elder Miner our other Assistant.

I cannot on this blog go into the details of the faithful service of each one of these missionaries. They`ve been so faithful and helpful in the work. They will be missed, but are now more prepared to continue to serve in their homes and move on with their education and families. We love them very much and pray for their continued success. I know the Lord will bless them.

We will make some changes in the office this cambio. Elder Campozano from Ecuador (left) will become the new Financero of the mission and Elder Adlard from Missouri (right) will begin training with Elder Dudley to become the new Mission Secretary.

While we were in Utah, Elder and Sister Hamilton began their service in our mission. They are from Colorado and will be here for two years. They both speak Spanish and are very familiar with the country. They have owned a summer home in Llanquihue for some time and have a great love for the Chilean people. Their son is married to the daughter of Elder and Sister Allen who finished their mission service here in June. They will be a great addition to our mission and we are so grateful for their help.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Recuperating with Family and Friends . . .

Most of you know that our recovery is well on track and Susie and I are back in Chile, anxious to serve and excited to be back home with our missionaries. We loved being with our family and friends and are so grateful for prayers and visits that helped us get better and feel of your love. Here are some pictures of some of those visits.
With Emmy at the airport for our return trip.
With Alison at the airport for our return trip.
Everyone loves ice cream. Here are Alison, Katie and Emmy enjoying a summer treat in aprons that their Aunt Karen brought back from Hawaii.

Karen, Cameron and Sara made the trip up from AZ. It was our first time to meet Sara. What an angel. She does have her Moma`s voice, though.

Joshua Poulter was one of our missionaries who is now attending BYU. Family forever.

Brother and Sister Burningham are the parents of Hermana Burningham, who is serving in our mission. What a great family.

Dennis and Dana Waggoner are dear friends from Oklahoma that now own the Escalante Outfitters in Escalante, UT. Be sure and stop by if you`re down that way. Here they are holding Darin`s youngest, Carly.

With some of our dear neighbors, Judy and Elizabeth.

Brother and Sister Moemai`s daughter is serving in our mission. She is the only Polynesian that we have and she is such a joy.

Here is Hna Butler who finished her mission in July. She and her family were nice enough to come by and visit.

Elder Zirkle served in our mission and has been home for some time. He is attending BYU and working at the MTC. Here is he with his mother.

Elder Shallenberger finished his mission in July and came by for a visit with a friend. Janessa is a very sweet girl and Elder Shallenberger will be missed in the mission. He served as mission secretary for 7.5 months and as an assistant for 6.

Hna Croook and Hna Wood also came by for a visit. Hna Crook lives in Centerville and Hna Wood lives in St. George.

Here we are with the Darrington family from Nevada. Their son is serving in our mission. Their daughter is getting ready to start at BYU.

This is the Simons family from Provo. Their son is also serving in our mission. Their other son pictured above recently returned from his mission.

Here are some of our former missionaries: Elder Shipley from Georgia, Elder Shallenberger from Orem, Hna McBride from Chicago, Hna Butler from Santaquin and Hna Crook from Centerville.

This is Brother and Sister Miner from Bountiful. Their son is serving in our mission and is currently one of our assistants.

This is the Cuadra family from Chile. Their brother is serving in our mission and is currently a zone leader. He spent 7.5 months as the mission secretary and is a great young man. His brother, sister in law, and daughter, along with his sister and her boyfriend were nice enough to come by.

What a blessing to have this time with our family. It was an unexpected surprise to be able to visit with some of our former missionaries and meet the families of some serving and others who have served. It is easy to see why our missionaries are so strong and faithful. Clearly, it all starts at home.