Monday, December 26, 2011

Merry Christmas!!! From Chile.

Hey family! After talking to you all I wondered why the Lord has blessed me so much to be born into a family so amazing!

After talking to you my companion said that he felt like he just watched a movie from the states. He thought we were the coolest family he has ever seen and he said it inspired him even though he had no idea what we were saying to have his future family the same way. The family looks so good and seeing you all and talking to you all gave me that burst to be better, to make the family proud. After all I carry the family name with me every day for two years wherever I go.

I felt retarded not being able to speak that great in English, but I hope you loved it all as much as I did. I was just so glad to see everybody looking so good. That was the best present, to see that everybody was doing great!

I have set the goal to write every night and to notice the miracles of the Lord in my life and especially here on the mission because I feel sometimes that we as human beings forget to notice God’s hand. It’s not only thanking God in prayer but writing them down to remember them all and never forget them.
So yesterday after talking to the families we had two important lessons with two families and one of them we had invited them to read the book of Mormon and pray. So we passed by and the dad told us that the Mormon thing and the religion wasn’t for him, but us being confident that the Sprit would help us, we just sat back and listened to him (and praying silently in our hearts for help). We went through the lesson and they had many doubts about temples and why they couldn’t enter in to watch their cousin be married and also why did this religion have to come from the states because its seems like the U.S. tries to convince the world and spread their religion everywhere. We listened and we talked about the Book of Mormon and the importance of it. We bore testimony and told him all the reasons why there needs to be one true church out of them all. We knew he felt the Spirit after we told him some more because he said ¨Well said¨. He ended up convinced that he wasn’t praying or reading very much. So we invited him to do so and he accepted. We also showed him the love we have for him and his family. So we invited him to read a part and decide whether its of God or the devil. Once he realized to was from God we invited him to pray to know if it’s true and then pray together as a family and meditate.
I knew we would have lost them if we didn’t enter with the Spirit and leave them with it. We left with thankful hearts for God allowing us to carry and give us his Spirit in that time of need. We were supper happy cause we really love the family and do want to lose them at all. But there are so many churches, ideas, and false prophets here. We testified the things we shared to be true. These trials make it hard on our investigators and so we are always praying for them and helping them understand that they have to keep reading and praying or satan will use the one doubt that might come to destroy their testimony.

Sorry for now sending pictures but i didn’t want to plug in my card here cause this internet is not great and so I don’t want any pictures erased so I’m going to wait to copy them onto a dvd before I send them to be sure.

Alright so you will have to write me double time or at least send me pictures of what the family got for Christmas for not writing me this week (even though we just talked…. Lol)

Love you all and the pictures will be on the way!

Con Amor,

Elder Pedersen

Monday, December 19, 2011

In Chile and doesn't feel like Christmas.

Thank you for the inspiring letters. That’s way cool to hear that Jordan was called to be assistant to the president, Man I miss all those kids in the ward now serving missions. I knew that Jordan would have a position like that, he's a leader.

This week was a great week for us and we were able to see the blessing from the Lord pouring out upon us. This week I have learned a lot. We revived some of our investigators that were almost dying and we taught great lessons to our investigators giving them promises. The spirit was very potent this week and we felt its power in our teaching. We are so close with coming to baptism with our investigators but right now we are just being patient waiting for the answer to come. I love being a missionary and don’t want this time to end even though I feel like its coming quick.

So yeah about the call, I’m not sure what house I will be in for Christmas cause we have received many invitations from people which is good but hard at the same time to figure out our final decision. The 24th is when everybody has their big celebration here but I will call you all at 6 on the 25. I got all the information and so I’m set to call! I’m way excited and can’t wait to talk to you all, I hope it turns out fine and we can hear and see each other but if there are any problems my number is XXXXXXXX. Alright List!

It seriously does not feel like Christmas at all, we have been in so many houses that just don’t decorate anything, we went to lunch yesterday and the hermana didn’t even have a Christmas tree out, it was kind of sad but it made me glad to be raised in a home where my parents are fanatics about Christmas and live in the spirit of Christmas, I love it all!

On Saturday we went to a recent converts house and their house was all decorated and their tree was decorated almost the exact way that Mom does it and she put on Christmas music in the background and I just couldn’t help but get Trunkey lol. I just started staring at the lights on the tree and started thinking about Christmas back at home for the first time this month, I was kind of irritated cause I thought I would be able to go through the entire month without getting Trunkey. But I guess it’s a good thing to get like that sometimes so I remember what season I’m in.

Well sorry for the short letter but you will get a lot more in 6 days when we talk!
 Come with questions. Love you all and wish you a merry Christmas!

-Elder Pedersen
P.S. I loved the stocking you made
Its way awesome. Makes me want to keep it.

Monday, December 12, 2011

12 days until Christmas and to talk to you!!!

Hello family!

I'm so excited to be able to talk to you all this Christmas, I have no idea where I'm going to do it all, in what house, but I hope I can do it on a good computer and that everything goes great and that it better than the last Christmas.

And don't worry about the whole picture thing my past companions have some videos and I will have to try and get them from them but yeah I was kind of devastated and thought to myself that my parents are going to kill me for not making a copy but it's weird cause I'm remembering to take more pictures, so I'm taking more pictures to make up for the lost ones.

But I will make another copy of the pictures that I have.

Well I was super happy to hear about Shanna and how well she is doing with her baby and that's it's a girl. I can't wait to be an uncle!

This week was a little different because we actually had our mission activity for Christmas. It was pretty fun; we did a relay race with the whole mission then after went to the church and changed clothes and listened to the president. I'm so glad that I get to pass my entire mission with the same president I love them both and they are so amazing. He spoke to us about many things, He is such an inspired man and I have learned so much from him. They gave the whole mission a pillow case cause in their family they have a lot of traditions and they absolutely love Christmas just like you Mom and dad and one of their traditions is that every year they make pillow cases for their kids at the beginning of the month representing them having dreams of Jesus throughout the month and so they gave us that as well as a journal and a book that he and sister Laycock wrote about Christmas. So it was way cool.

It so weird to be in the heat for Christmas it's like a new world down here but I have to remember that I'm basically at the bottom of the world. But at the same time having it is hot makes not as homesick because it doesn't feel a bit like Christmas.

Oh also yesterday we have changes and I stayed, I was actually happy to because I know me and Elder Lugo could accomplish a lot here and I wanted to do a lot more. It's weird because I will end up spending both of my Christmases here in the stake of Puente alto. I can't believe it, I have been in my first ward for 5 changes and now here for 5 changes but I'm enjoying and taking advantage of being here for this long instead of my first ward. I loved my first ward but I feel like I didn't take advantage of the time but I don't want to make that same choice. I want to work super hard and look back without regrets.

By the way I got the package but was tempted to open the packages but I didn't. But I don't know if you wanted me just to open them right now or if you're sending another package but for right now I won't open it but I'm loving the stories that you gave me, they are all way awesome and I enjoy reading them.

I cannot believe that Kenny will be sending his papers in no time! And that Kellin is 16! It seriously can't be but I'm way excited for Kenny and I can't wait till he gets to that point to getting ready to leave because I will have tons to fill him in on and hints because I know I didn't understand anything about a mission really before I left.

Well I'm not sure if I will be able to answer all the questions that you have for me because there are many, but I hope I can answer them the best that I can. Each one will get a brief response since I don't have much time, sorry.

Well I think what keeps kids making right decisions even when not taught right is that we all have the light of Christ and no matter how they are taught they will feel what they are doing is wrong. Me and my comp. we're talking about this cause the little girl that got baptized has a family who wasn't taught well and now the rest just continue in that path But I think that people always will know good from bad for the light of Christ but I also believe that people can become used to committing such sins over and over again that that light of Christ over time starts to dwindle.

- I wonder sometimes what it was that kept me on the straight and narrow path But I realized that I obtained a testimony of these things early on, maybe I didn't realize it at that time that I even had a strong testimony until I saw people around me falling and at that same time I was able to stand my ground. It's like what it says in the scriptures in Lehi's dream, the barro de hierro will be the thing that will keep us on our feet when the winds blow, and the barro de hierro is the word of God and we find the word of God from the scriptures and prophets, we can't afford to let go even for a moment we all need the word of God. We are lost without it. Look up 1 Nephi 15:24. Gain a testimony and if you already have one keep strengthening it because it's so easy to forget the spirit that was once felt.

- I always knew that I would serve a mission and always felt that it was my duty to God and of course I didn't understand everything or even how the restoration of the gospel came about in detail but I knew the gospel was true and couldn't deny it. It's like what elder Andersen said in one of his talks, you don't know everything but you know enough, not knowing enough should never be an obstacle. To answer the question about the atonement, I knew about the power of repentance and felt its power in my life before and in the mission but I didn't understand it fully. I didn't understand that if God is so willing to forgive and forget our sins who is it of us to go back beat ourselves up about it if it's already forgotten by God. The power of the atonement of Christ is real and I don't know how it's done but it was done. I could go into detail but really I have seen the power of the sacrifice of Christ in our lives and it truly changes lives, I have seen it take place in the hearts of people and seen it strengthen people as well as me.

Well I got to go now and I hope I could answer to your needs, But remind me of the ones next week so I can answer them if you want.

Well I love you all and I know the gospel is something real and that there is an eternal plan for us that makes it possible for us to live with God again and with each other.

Disfruten esta mez de navidad y buscen el salvador a la vez!!

Love you,
Elder Pedersen

P.S. I need your address for Skype that you're going to use and also if you can make up one for me. I will need it next week no matter what. Can't wait to talk to and see you.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Happy Holidays

So yeah you kind of accomplished making me trunky but not homesick lol. I just love Christmas and all of that, it's so impossible to think that I will be their next Christmas but for now I will be focused and like you said I would not trade this time for the world. I'm learning so many things. more than I ever thought and even though Satan tries telling me that I'm not learning anything and I'm wasting my time and that my work here is useless, I try to take Chanelle's advice and look for all the gifts and knowledge that I do have instead of looking at the things that I don't. It helps and motivates me to destroy those thoughts of inadequacy.

Well it's crazy to see all you guys bundled up in your coats and jackets for the winter. It's like I tell the people here my family is in the states in coats for the snow while we are here dying from heat, lol. It really is super hot here. I was talking to an elder from El Salvador and he said that its super humid and hot their, but here it's even hotter. It's all good cause it will be my last Christmas in the heat serving the people I love so I have to love it while it lasts.  I hope to go to Salt Lake City when I go home; I want the coldest Christmas ever. Lol. It's kind of funny cause people are setting up all decorations for Christmas but it's just weird when it is so hot here. My comp. and I are still trying to get used to it all but the people here find it so normal because that is all they know.

Well this week was a different one but we had a baptism and it was hard to get there with a girl of the age of 9. We had to work hard with her cause it was super hard for her to pay attention. I learned a lot from teaching her especially patience. I knew that she wasn't going to understand everything so we had to try and explain everything super basic and that helped us focus on the main points. I usually don't like baptizing kids at that age because usually if the mom or dad don't go to church they don't go either so I was kind of nervous  cause most all of her family aren't members and her mom is a recent convert. But the little girl got baptized without being obligated so that was awesome cause it shows desire. so we hope that she stays in the church and applies the things we taught her in her life so she can leave the drugs, sex, alcohol and all of that behind and be better than her family.

So anyway we had the baptism on Saturday cause the mom was going to invite all her family that was catholic and so we got super stressed out cause nobody from the ward was going to be able to go and we couldn't receive the key to the church and so we had no idea what we were going to do and our ward mission leader wanted us to cancel everything the day before but we knew we couldn't do it so long story short we got the keys and got everything ready and right before the baptism starts the counselor called us and said he wasn't going to make it and so we were running around trying to look for priesthood to come but right before the visitors started getting antsy he came and the girl came with her mom and she wasn't very excited for her baptism because the rest of her family couldn't come but I tried to make her happy and excite her but as you can see in the picture she wasn't happy at first but then I got to baptize her and she put a smile on her face when she came up out of the water. It was stressful and even though we didn't have much support from the ward we did it and the spirit was felt.

So we have changes this next week and I'm kind of scared what will happen, I'm pretty sure that I'm going but I don't know cause I was in my first ward for 5 changes and I have 4 in this one. I want to stay to see my investigators be baptized cause they weren't ready this last change.

Its so weird to think that I have 7 months left in the mission, I don't feel that i will ever be ready to leave here. I feel like I still have so much to do and learn. I feel like my time is going by so fast and I don't like it. If i were Chanelle I would be going home next month! That would be way too soon. I know before I know it I will be going home and so I'm trying to take advantage of every moment that I have left, and grow and become the missionary that God wants me to be.

Pues les amo a todos y que tengan una buena semana. Cuídense.
Gracias por sus oraciones y apoyo. Que disfruten la navidad y pensar
En el sacrificio de nuestro salvador. Hagan lo just!

Elder Pedersen
P.S. What did you guys think about my lost pictures?

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Grateful Heart...

Querida familial,

I'm glad that you talked about gratitude because this week I have to try and look for the bright side of things and I hope you're in that mood too because as of Monday when I was on internet I plugged my card in to send you more pictures but what happened is there was a virus in the computer and it got on my card that goes in my camera and erased many pictures and videos, about 300 and something and so I was freaking out and after looking for a while for a place to fix this problem to see if somebody could get my pictures back because when that happens the virus only hides the pictures but doesn't erase them, we found a guy who is an engineer in computers and he knew his stuff, but after about an hour he told me that he couldn't get my pictures back because the virus was so bad and had already damaged the pictures. And so I was so frustrated and the funny thing is that the spirit told me several times before to make a back up but I never had the chance to do it but it was a lesson learned.

This has happened to so many missionaries except that some of them had their camera stolen too. I'm glad this happened now than at the end of my mission because now I'm going to take more pictures and always make a back up of everything. Yeah lame huh and yeah me too for not making a back up. I'm pretty irritated because I had many videos but yeah don't kill me.

I was wondering if I could send the card to you guys and try and get some videos and pictures back. But it's your call if you think it's worth it or do you think that I should just format everything? Think about it.

Well on to something happier lol. This week was a good week because the two girls that we are teaching want to get baptized and so we are super happy about that. It's all working out because their grandparents are members and help a lot. Members really are the key.

The big family that I have told you about didn't come to church again because they have meetings as fireman this month and so I was kind of sad cause that means the I won't be here if they get baptized if I get changed out because we have changes in two weeks and they won't be able to go to church until January, but we went over for lunch yesterday after they invited us over and we had a lot of fun. I'm going to call that my Thanksgiving dinner because I actually forgot that it was Thanksgiving this past week because we didn't do anything and they obviously don't celebrate it here or in Mexico so we did nothing. But anyways the family really loves me and they know we have changes in two weeks so they said that they don't want to meet other Elders cause they are already used to me, but I know that they will be o.k. cause I want to commit them to baptism before I leave so they keep listening to the elders and preparing themselves. But I really love that family they are so awesome and I want this gospel in their life so bad because I know it will do miracles for them.

Yesterday we had a sector slam in my first sector which is when all the elders go and help knock doors to find people for that sector. And since I'm in the same stake and have been for a year in total I went there to knock doors and I had an impression to go to the house of one of my converts that I baptized in that ward.  I went their kind of nervous because he doesn't go to church much, but when I showed up there, we were both super happy to see each other and it was so good to see how he was and so I taught him and it was a great lesson and the spirit was there and it was felt that I loved him and the Lord as well and wanted him to go back to church and he listened to everything I said and told me he was going to go to church and told me he was super happy I passed by. He just needed a little nudge or push back to church and who better to do it then the one who baptized him! I was so happy to have received revelation to go and give him that push.

I really love this ward and this sector. I'm not going to lie but when I first got here I just couldn't wait to leave because I had heard so many bad things about this ward but I love it and we are doing a great work here and seeing miracles. Which speaking of miracles the one about Mary Bennion was incredible; I was in shock when I read it. But yeah I love it and the people seem to love me here too, lol. I wonder what will happen this next change.

Also I got the package you sent me. Thank you so much for being on top of getting me my card and everything and the shirt was hilarious! I love it. Only if it was in Spanish so I could wear it around. Lol I'll let you know when I get the next one.

I have learned so much these past changes more than I ever thought I would. I am really coming to love these people and the people that come from other countries, I'm learning a lot, the mission is going by fast and I may not remember all that I did on the mission but I will cherish the things I have learned forever. I know and testify that God knows us and gives us the challenges that we need to progress. We are here to progress, that was the reason we chose to come here, now we need to give God our will because that's the only thing he doesn't have from us. I'm learning to be a true disciple of Christ and stand by him even when it is hard.

I can't believe all that is going on at home I'm so happy that Shanna is doing good with the baby, it's also crazy to think that Kenny has a license let alone Kellin driving, so crazy!

Well I love you all and I love hearing the blessings that are being poured out over you all while I am here serving the Lord, I can see it and feel it. Thank you for your prayers and your thoughts.

Con amor infinito,
Elder Pedersen

Monday, November 21, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Well I was kind of disappointed for not having received a letter from mom today. Something must have happened and not sent. (He ended up receiving my letter!! Phew)

Well on to a new subject, I cannot believe Kenny's voice!! Good job Kenny. I would never think that he would do something like that in front of people, at least before my mission, because he is obviously changed. I didn't even recognize his voice when I heard it. That song by the way is awesome and made me want to cry hearing it, especially because Kenny was singing it. Man I miss my brothers! Did someone assign him to sing it? How did Stake conference go?

Well this week has been a great one for me. I and my companion are doing really great and we had a baptism yesterday and it was way awesome. We have been waiting for that day forever and it finally came. We made programs that on the back members could write their testimonies and give it to him to remember them. He was super nervous and I got the change to baptize him so I was super grateful for that opportunity. There were a couple things that didn't go exactly right like when the little kids were running around blowing whistles and throwing grass into the baptismal font lol but other than that it was great and he felt the cleansing of his sins.

We also gave talks yesterday and I talked about the power of the Book of Mormon and my companion talked about finding joy in making others happy through the gospel and after we put books of Mormons and folletos outside the sacrament room we were happy to see that they were all gone and people were actually asking us for more but we didn't have any more and so we were super happy cause people felt the spirit and wanted to be part of the work. People came up to us and gave us compliments. It's going good in the ward and we are getting to know the ward more and more each day. Truly you can make a difference in someone's life from the love that is shown to them.

I'm learning a lot from Elder Lugo and we are having fun in the work trying to be obedient because we have realized that the little things count and make all the difference. The small and simple things bring about the great things. Never be a slacker and do a half a job because laziness is the biggest tool that Satan uses, he tries to convince people to do it the easy way.
Also earlier this week we had a lesson with a guy and we were feeling that even though we taught him everything, we felt like he wasn't progressing. We wanted to ask him to be baptized, so we were going to ask him and if he said no we would stop passing by for a while. It's hard because we love him and want him to have this joy in his life. Well, we passed by and his 15 year old son was with him and we taught them and the spirit was there and we instead of directing the lesson only to the dad we did more so to the son because we found out he is looking for the true church as well as the dad is a little shy.

I then felt impressed to ask them to come to the church to do a tour and the same day we did the tour there was a ward activity and the ward members got to know the family and they felt really comfortable. We were so happy for them and felt the joy from helping bring one soul to God. It was strange, but we didn't even feel impressed to asked him to be baptized and we were happy about that cause it showed that God had other things planned for him to prepare him to accept the gospel.

We have many other people we are teaching as well. I'm not sure if you remember but we are teaching a family that the dad doesn't or didn't like gringos and his wife died not too long ago. But anyways I have seriously come to love the family and we have been praying for all of our investigators so much especially this family because I know that his wife wants him and his family to accept this gospel because she was a member. So we passed by yesterday with the hermana that gave us the reference and we watched the Joseph Smith movie and they felt the spirit really strong and the hermana gave testimony as well as my companion and I. She started to cry and at the end the dad and the wife of his son were crying too. I know they felt the spirit. That night we also gave their daughter a blessing cause she was really sick throwing up and after we did she fell right asleep, so they were able to see the power of the priesthood. I really love the family and hope they get baptized while I'm in this sector because they have come so far. They say that I'm spoiled in their family. It's funny because I have to try hard to get in that house and to convince them to listen to me, because I am a gringo.

Well I love you all and I hope to get the letter from mom next week or something because dad cut his short so mom could talk about everything.

Thank you so much for your prayers.

Con amor,
Elder Pedersen

Monday, November 14, 2011

The Most Wonderful Time of the Year!!!

I miss times and days like those where we just have our day with either mom or dad. I'm thankful for parents who take the time throughout their busy life to spend time and play games and do things with us and to dedicate certain days to each child. My parents are awesome! Just a side

I got the video of dad in the mountains but for some reason I couldn't hear anything. But the pictures are beautiful.

I loved the lesson about cleaning the inner vessel. I love teaching with visual things like that. I have made some stuff like that to teach better but especially now I like having lessons like that because right now we are teaching little kids around the age of 9 to 13 and sometimes its hard cause they get distracted very easily and sometimes it's hard cause we usually are teaching adults and so when we teach kids I sometimes forget to simplify everything so they understand and so I think it's good that you teach with objects.

Well this week was a little different. We passed by a kid whose parents wanted us to come by and get his kid to believe in God and so we passed by and passed by and we tried teaching the dad the gospel as well but he only believes in God not organized religion and so we are trying to get him to understand that there is more than just believing in God. But we focused more on the kid and we talked about all the reasons why God exists ( by the way he is 15) and after we told him that he doesn't need to believe us but ask his Heavenly Father if he really is there and so he accepted and he did it. So the next time we passed by he said he did it and received an answer and that he felt a peace and so we were super excited and so we started teaching him about the restored church and he accepted everything. So then we pass by a week later and his dad was there and we started teaching him, but his dad said that we basically did are job and so we should feel satisfied with that. So I kind of got frustrated cause we started having an influence on his son and so I got kind of angry even though I shouldn't have and told them that faith without works is dead and so it doesn't matter if you believe in God until you do something with it. But overall it was frustrating and I hope that they will let us come back into their house because it's just sad to see people that believe that they will get into the kingdom of heaven by saying they believe in God. But it seems hard at times for people to believe that they have to live the gospel and do the things Christ has taught us to do so they can be together with their families forever and receive not only a fullness of joy in the next life but in this life a well.

We are also teaching two granddaughters of a member and so we are way excited to see them progress and help them increase their faith in Jesus Christ and take all the steps to return to God and it's been an awesome experience to hear testimony's of the members. Having members in a lesson is the key because it gives the member a chance to bear their testimony and to have it grow, plus the investigator can hear another persons testimony of things rather than from two youngens in dress cloths and a plaque.

I just hope we don't loose any of our investigators cause we have come so far with them and I really have come to love them. Huh (Maybe I need to tell them that so they know) but really that's one of the hardest parts about missionary work, is to leave someone behind because they can't believe.

So anyway, thank you for your prayers and I love you all to pieces and pray for you every day. I can't believe that Kenny is already taking senior pictures; I was shocked to hear that! Man time fly's by, so take hold of it and make the best out of it while you got the chance.

Les Amo y espero que todo les vaya bien esta semana!
Elder Pedersen

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Querida Familia!!

Querida Familia,

This week seemed like a great week for you all. I can't believe that the holidays are already coming so fast it's crazy! This week was a little crazy and awesome for me and the mission because on Saturday we got to see an apostle!! We all knew that someone would come because the north mission was there and president was supper excited. So well you probably all guessed it but elder cook came! I knew he would be the one to come because dads said that when he went to stake conference he was going to come here in November and so when he first walked in he wanted to shake all our hands and so I got to shake his hand but it was supper fast because there was so many people. I wanted to talk to him about when he went to Medford but I obviously couldn't. So he spoke to us but it seemed really short the whole thing and he had a translator so I was glad I got to understand him in English because in Spanish it was just different.

He talked to us about thrusting in our sickle and establishing the church here in Chile through the Lords help instead of only baptizing we need to reactivate people through going over things that important because the first vision and the plan of salvation are the two things that people generally remember but they need to remember for example the apostasy and need to know the Joseph Smith was called as prophet to restore the new and last dispensation and he talked about how bishops and even apostles don't know why they are called to the position that they are but they adapt and move on and change and get outside the box and think about the people they serve. He said that sometimes as apostles they don't feel adequate enough to be an apostle. He said every Thursday Elder Packer tells the brethren that he still doesn't know why he's here and so they say if he doesn't then how are we to know. Lol

He then answered questions and I liked when he said that we will never be the missionaries that we want to be, we will never be a perfect missionaries but we will become great missionaries if we live by what is set before us (rules). He also said that once we understand that the sacrifice of Jesus Christ not only gets us salvation but also gets rids us of all the (un) fairness in the world and come to know Him, then we can and will be able to testify of Jesus Christ just as any other person in the church. He then left us a blessing that future generations will be blessed and will remember our service that we gave here in Chile and that we will be blessed and he said some other stuff as well but it was really great. Like Dad said he is not as outgoing as some of the other apostles and he may only be a man but I felt he really is a special witness of Jesus Christ and a chosen servant of the Lord.

So also I got the package from the family! I'm not sure if everything was in their when I got it but I received the foot soles, some candy and picture book with a card. It looked like it was opened when I got it so I hope everything was in their but thank you for the pictures. They are awesome and everybody looks so great and holy cow Kellin and McKenna look so big! Gosh that's crazy no wonder Kellin has been getting the Gosh everything seems so different back at home. But thank you for the pictures, they are way awesome oh and the foot soles. They are way awesome!

Me and my companion are doing really great and are finding so many people and the members are giving us references and me and my companion are growing together. And we are continuing teaching a family and its going really good, I was scared that they wouldn't accept without the Chilean but they said they are ready to go to the church and so we were really excited but they forgot but they are going to go next week. I really see the desire in the family to know these things especially the Dad because his wife died 2 years ago and so I think he wants these things to be true and so we pray that we can help these investigators that God has given us to baptize and come to Christ.

So pray for our investigators.

Les amo y siempre están en mis oraciones
 Elder Pedersen

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!!

Thank you Mom and Dad. I couldn't ask for better parents. I feel your support and prayers every day, seriously it's the weirdest thing but I really do. Thank you for the pictures as well, I loved them and the costumes were hilarious and the house seems to have changed a lot as well! For example what happened to the other television? It's all good because its looks better like this anyway.

Well to start off this week has been a good week and the more Elder Vergara and I get along the more we both want to stay together cause we know we are going to see success this next change and so I was nervous because I already have 4 and a half months in this sector and so I really didn't know what is going to happen but if there is one thing I have learned it is to trust in God cause he knows what I need and he knows what will make me better and I prayed that whatever happens I just want to be happy.

So we got the call and I found out that elder Vergara was leaving and I was staying again! I couldn't believe it and I'm not going to lie but I was kind of irritated because we had gained confidence with all investigators. But I prayed to feel comfortable about what happened and I felt that everything was going to be alright.

So I was thinking there is something else God wants me to learn in this sector because even though I feel I learned a lot already and even though I didn't want elder Vergara to go I felt like I learned what God wanted me to learn and most of all I learned to have greater love for the Chilean people, but I guess there is still to learn.

I received my new companion at the change counsels and he is a Mexican named Elder Lugo I'm his mom and he is super nice and he is a way happy guy. I feel good that this change will be a great one. I'm excited.

SO we went to change counsels and president had told us some things and one of those things was that every single missionary will do the training program which includes 2 hours of studying as companions and he also told us that he has been praying hard for someone to come here and inspire the mission and he said this Saturday we will definitely be inspired and the north mission will be joining us and so it will definitely be an apostle so I'm way excited! I can't wait, their hasn't been an apostle here in this mission for 3 years and so I'm super excited!

I cannot believe that Chanelle is dating someone that she likes. I'm not surprised to know that she is going on dates but with someone that she likes? Dang it lol I hope they don't rush things lol.

That's so awesome to hear that Daniel is becoming a great teacher, that's awesome that he has already mastered it because I'm still working on it. It's definitely a gift that only comes from heaven.

By the way I haven't got your package yet. Hopefully it will come this next week or something and I don't think I need anything else but thank you for taking care of the card thing. I think I just need foot soles but that's about it.

Wow it's so crazy to see how fast the time is flying by its insane. I remember when you sent me those pictures form last years Halloween. It seriously feels like it was a month ago. Also today a huge group left to return home. Elder Fiscuss and many other awesome elders went home today. It was kind of sad but tells me how fast my time will run out.

 By the way has Shanna already gone to the doctors to see what's going on?

Love you all and keep safe. I'm glad to be a missionary, there's no other place to be and to grow as much as I'm growing now.

Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

Monday, October 24, 2011

Love my mission!!

Thank you Mom and Dad for the letters. I honestly don't feel that special, but if you say so...I love you both and couldn't ask for better parents.

I can't believe you didn't send any pictures of home coming of Kenny and them or is it next week? I can't remember if you told me or not. I'm so glad Kenny is doing awesome. He and I are going to be hanging out a bunch when I get back, I love that guy.

It was an awesome experience with Skyler that I will never forget and it was awesome to see how much we have grown. Skyler is a great leader like he has always been and we are just growing together while being here. We talked so much about what we want to do when coming back and things like that and it's so crazy because it just kicked me back into reality and I realized I only have 8 months left, and Christmas its already coming up and people are starting to tell me that I have no time left and it just puts it into perspective on how fast the time is flying by and I can't believe it!

Well this week was a great week. Me and Elder Vergara (which no not elder Perez) are doing awesome together and are working the sector and finding more people. And by the way I have about 4 months in this sector but I actually really like it now because the people you form relationships with motivate you to stay and in every lesson or at lunch we are always laughing our heads off. We have a great time together.

And I'm not sure if I told you but about 2 months ago I got a reference from a member in the ward who is from a big family that recently had their mom die. So Elder Perez and I went over there and the Dad first came out and said he doesn't really like associating with gringos (Americans) And so I tired persuading him to listen to us but he said you believe in agency right and so I don't really want to listen. And so I was looking for the spirit to direct me on what to say and so I said if you believe in agency then how about you use it by listening to us and then after you can choose if our message is true or not and so he was convinced and let us in and we talked about families and had a great lesson but we only taught a part of the family and so after he said he liked the lesson but he said he would call me and he seemed kind of hard to teach so I don't know why, but we didn't go over again. So like a month passed and I got my new companion and I was praying really hard for a family to be able to find and the next Sunday the hermana came up to us and said, "Elders what is happing with that family? I have had them on my mind all this week. And so we passed by again last week and just talked to the dad just to get his confidence in us and he seemed nice to us but still doesn't like the states but we set up an appointment and went in and watched the movie together forever and this time more of his family was present and they all loved the movie and so we set another appointment up for yesterday (Sunday) and so we passed by and taught them the plan of salvation and the spirit was so strong and the love that God has for that family was present and they told us they have never invited someone into their house before and so they said we got lucky cause he felt different with us and he is warming up to me and in no time his heart will be opened towards me and he will love me ha-ha. So they accepted to pray and read and so Elder vergara and I were super happy so now this next coming week for changes I hope that I stay because I want to be able to be here to see the people I have been teaching be baptized. We have other people progressing too but I was super happy to find this family cause president encouraged the mission to pray to find a family so the mission can have a ¨White Christmas¨. Cool huh?

Well I'm happy that everything is going great for the family and especially grateful that Shanna is strong and is able to carry the baby.

I can't believe that Kellin has a girlfriend and to top it off being a ladies' man! That's hilarious! I think it's funny that he's also dating the daughter of the mom that Dad dated before. Ha-ha I guess that's the price you pay for living in the same place your whole life.

My Spanish is great and I'm loving have a Latin for a companion, elder Vergara is the other reason I want to stay in this sector because he is awesome and we get along great and were doing work.

Wish me good luck and pray for me this week. I love you and the gospel is true!

Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

50th Celebration!!!! I saw SKYLER!!!!

The celebration was awesome! The four missions that were there sang a song and many seemed to love it. But I first got their on Saturday knowing that for sure I was going to see Skyler but scared at the same time that I wasn't going to be able to find him but when I got their I couldn't find him and so I was thinking in the back of my head, what will my parents think when I don't find him and then someone in my zone was like elder Pedersen I think that's him and I was like no way and so we started freaking out and ran and gave each other a huge hug and we were just in shock that we were in Chile together and so we sat down together and talked for the entire celebration and no not one Apostle came but it didn't really matter to us cause we paid enough attention to say amen at the end of each talk. ha-ha but I was seriously in shock and every time we looked at each other we would just be reminded that 6 months earlier I was talking to him on Skype for Mother's day. It was so awesome and we both were just in awe thinking how amazing God is, It was definitely a little tender mercy of the Lord thinking that God put two best buddies just 30 min away from each other and the only time we would be able to see each other was at this celebration!

We talked about everything and we watched the dances that the youth prepared of different cultures all around the world and it was way cool and at the end we ran out on the field with everybody jumping and screaming. Lol it was so fun.

Ha-ha I'm still in shock that we were able to see each other! I will send you some pictures that we took together. We actually realized how close our missions really are from one another.

It was an awesome experience that I will never forget that we were able to see each other as missionaries serving the same people in the same country and to be able to see how much both of us has grown (spiritually). We also found out that I have actually grown physically, I'm actually as tall or taller than Skyler so I didn't feel like such a little person like before.

It's weird that you say that you have only gotten like 25 pictures from me because every time I send pictures I send you that much so I'm wondering if you are not getting all the photos that I send you guys. And I cant send videos over internet and so I will try to make some copies on a CD sometime And I still haven't got the package that you sent but hopefully when the mail comes tomorrow I will get it.

You should go on the church website to see the video of the celebration because they said they would put it up there and you'll be able to see us singing and stuff.

Well this week has been a little different with having to travel so much during the week to practice for the celebration. But our investigators are doing good but it's kind of lame cause I have found out that people here in this part are super slow to progress like our investigator that want to get baptized told us he put his own date for the 18th of November to be baptized so I'm kind of disappointed if i'm not here for the next change, but if I'm not it's what Gods wants. But overall we are finding more and more people to teach and so part of me wants to stay in this same area but the other part of me wouldn't mind leaving, but we are doing good.

Well I love you all and thank you for all the love and
Support and I hope to hear from the boys soon!

Les Amo Muchísimo
Elder Pedersen

Monday, October 10, 2011

Serving in the Promised Land!!

Alright I'm sorry I feel like a slacker with the short e-mails and the little bit of pictures that I send but I only send a bit of pictures because I don't take much. It's a lot different cause they advise us not to pull our cameras out and take pictures so we don't look like tourists and plus people might steel our cameras which I have heard has happened many times. I have heard of missionaries that only take pictures of the baptisms that they have, and that's it. But still I will try and take more pictures than I have.

This week has been a good week and we are finding out that it's easy to find people to teach, the only thing now is to keep them and have patience with them. For example this last week on Tuesday we went to our investigators Mom's house and the son to see how they were and talk about the 10 commandments cause we gave them a folleto (pamphlet) to read on the law of chastity and when we passed in the house and sat down the mom came in from the other room and handed us the pamphlet and said I don't agree with this at all and started going off on what she doesn't agree with and things like that and so I was actually about to get mad but instead we just listened to her and I just waited to see what the spirit would put into my mouth to say and after talking to us about the things that she didn't like which were little things, I asked her if she had read the book of Mormon and prayed and she said she had not even prayed about it but prayed everyday and I knew she hadn't so we calmed her down and talked about how everything hangs on if the book of Mormon is true or not and so they came to church and after church we talked about the 10 commandments and she didn't have any complaints about anything and she was super happy about that and it was way cool because it was fast Sunday and they heard awesome testimonies from the members and they were shocked at people spoke straight from the heart, they said no other pastor in any other person in another church does that and Elias the son said he went back and listened to the talk by the prophet 3 times and he said he knows the church is true. It just makes me think that if truly people would search with all their heart they would find the truth.

So we are super happy with the progress of Elias and Edith and we are finding more and more people that have great potential to progress. I have been praying and praying that we can find a family to be able to teach and baptize because president invited us missionaries to pray and set the goal before the navidad to be able to find a family. In this sector there is so much potential and I just want to find that one family that is waiting for the gospel and that is being prepared by the lord.

Well I actually just found out that Skyler got permission to go to the big celebration this next Saturday cause last week he told me that he wasn't sure if he was going to be able to go to the activity but now he can and so we are so stoked and can't wait to see each other, I don't know how we are going to be able to find each other in a bushel of tons of people but it will happen or God wouldn't put us so close together! And as of right now nobody is sure if an apostle is coming or the prophet but it's going to be awesome! This last week we heard from the area presidency of Chile through satellite and it was actually shown all over but it was way cool and they showed a video of how the church started here in Chile and while watching it I just felt super privileged to be a missionary here in Chile and to be surrounded by many great Chilean members who have such great testimonies of the gospel.

Well it looks like you have tons of fun at the lone pine activity, I couldn't believe that dad made that jail, and it looks way cool. Thank you for your prayers and I will let you all know how it goes, I'm way excited!

Love you all tons and I'm super glad that Shanna is doing well so far, I hope it continues that way

Elder Pedersen

P.S. I have written some people back in the ward and I haven't
received many letters from the ward, maybe people have got
The address wrong or something. But yes I will write the kids more and I hope Kenny
received the letter I sent to him like a month and a half ago.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Love my companion!!

This week has been way good and I love my companion Elder Vergara, he is hilarious and we are always laughing our heads off. I thought it would take a little time to get used to a Latin companion because of all the things you hear about them on the mission but they were wrong and I also thought it would be hard to always be speaking in Spanish but I love it and I'm learning a lot. It basically just comes now and it's a blast. Now when I get home I won't be able to speak well with Mexicans because I speak Chilean. Ha-ha it's definitely a lot different than the last change and it's a lot more relieving.
This week we also were able to place a baptismal date with Edith and Elias, finally! This sector is kind of hard to get baptisms at times because the ward really doesn't want to do anything and there is a lot of back biting that goes in the church and it seems like the investigators don't find it very warm their but we went over to their house on Saturday and had a big discussion about baptism and they finally were convinced, we just now have to help them on that road to baptism because they feel a little timid to do so but I know they feel that this church is true and they even said that but they just get scared at times but when we pass by and we carry the spirit with us in the lesson that fear goes away.
I cannot wait until general conference, it's so exciting and I know I have said it before but it's seriously like Christmas. It's going to be super exciting to have our investigators go and watch it because that will be a pivotal moment for them and they will really feel the spirit.
Well I only have a couple of minutes to write today because we have a mission activity today at 4 to celebrate the 18th of September and so we barely have any time to do anything but it is going to be fun and we will get a chance to see the whole mission.
I have been praying super hard for Shanna too that the whole pregnancy will go great because Shanna already told me and I was freaking out! I'm super excited for her and can't wait, I have a feeling that everything will go just right because it will be in Gods timing.
Well I love you all and sorry for the short letter but I will try to take more pictures this week and send them to you this next Monday.
Love you all and be diligent in all things.
- Elder Pedersen

Monday, September 19, 2011

Thankful for this call to represent the Lord....

Don't worry about not sending me letters last week and my feet don't kill me but still I would love the foot insoles so I can feel more like I'm walking on

I'm so thankful for this calling that I have to be a missionary and to represent the greatest person to ever walk this earth. There is so much that I want to accomplish and there is so much I am already accomplishing here in the mission and it scares me to think my time is quickly passing away. I want to always become the best I can be especially while I'm here in the service of the Lord where it's like the President describes as the University of Life. I love my mission and love being here and I hope and pray that I can grow to love these people and Chile even more as I'm here serving the lord. 

What I have learned most on my mission among so many things that it's hard to say only one but I think that I have learned most is that the Lord is in charge and that he knows his children. The moment you trust Him is when you start to sprout more than you ever would have thought.

I think what best prepared me for my mission was reading the scriptures because that is where I gained my testimony and even though I didn't know everything I knew I had a testimony and that is where it all started. Once you get your roots planted deeply you will never waver but sprout straight up.

The most enriching experience that I have had being in the mission is answering or following the sprit and realizing that it was either and answer to a prayer or just the right thing that was needed to be said to that person. I have gained such a great testimony of the spirit, those feelings of the spirit are indescribable and so amazing, it's so awesome to speak and be totally guided be the spirit and realizing afterwards wow that was not me at all saying that. I learned that the moment you doubt the spirit withdraws. SO don't ever doubt because faith does not exist in the presence of doubt. whether its accepting a mission call or giving a talk or teaching a lesson don't doubt so the lord can help you. Also the most enriching experience is to teach someone the gospel of Jesus Christ and seeing them apply it and seeing everything about them change. I feel honored to see God take place in someone and seeing what he does with them after they open their hearts and their minds. I love being an instrument in the hands of God!

What I would advise the boys to do is to read the book of Mormon and gain a testimony of these things because that's what will save you from a world full of evil beckoning you to join. That's exactly what saved me; I knew that the world doesn't bring true happiness like it says it does. Maybe for only a moment but it's not the true happiness that God gives. gain your own testimony of these things and plant your roots deep down and start now to prepare for your mission to be a chosen worthy vessel of the Lord because the Lord doesn't choose everybody to partake in this work, only those that have pure hands and pure hearts that have not set their heart upon the things of the world. Build your weaknesses that so easily beset you so God can strengthen them for you so you can assist him in his work, fast if you have to. All you boys are chosen, now live up to that promise.

So changes came and I stayed but my companion actually left and I'm not going to lie but it was almost like a breath of fresh air because I really don't think he could have lasted much longer here and I don't think I could last much longer as trainer. I felt like I seriously couldn't do much more with him, he was like a tree that would not move. But overall when he was packing up we talked about how much fun we actually had together and I realized how much I actually learned.

So this morning we got up and went to change counsels and it was super small because President said for some reason that there was not going to be many changes and when I got their I was super nervous. SO they called me up and introduced me to my new companion who is Latin! I was super nervous but excited at the same time because I had always wanted a Latin companion so I could speak and learn the language better. At first he was kind of quiet, I think he was scared to go into his second sector of the mission so he didn't talk much, but then we got to the pension and we talked and he seems like a really hard worker who wants to help and baptize so I was ecstatic. We will definitely do work in this sector, it's going to feel so different to be able to put some of the load on my companion instead of it only being me. SO even though he doesn't know a lick of English it will be fun and I'm going to be speaking better by the end of this change. He is Chilean which is way cool cause he is 1 out of three Chileans in the mission. So here comes pure Spanish.

I was super glad that I was staying because we are teaching two people that are super close to getting baptized and we have another on their way and so it's going to be pretty cool.

I'm not sure if I told you but I'm in the same stake and zone that I was in when I first got to Chile, so over all I have been in the stake of Puente alto or I will be In the stake of Puente for a year total and this will be my third Stake Conference in this same stake. It's so crazy but it's cool cause we had stake conference a couple of weeks ago and I got to see and talk to tons of members from my first ward that remembered me and it was cool because elders in that ward are teaching people that my trainer and I found that will be getting ready to be baptized and I got to see him at Stake Conference so it was cool to see the fruits of my labors in that ward.
The temperatures here are crazy but yes that Is pretty much normal and also this past week there was an earth quake and it was like a 6 on the scale but I didn't feel it cause I was sleeping but a lot of missionaries felt it and president wants us to prepare as much as possible just in case something happens and some people think that it might. 
That's cool that there's a new movie about Joseph Smith, I want to see it. It's been pretty cool to have DVD players in the pension to watch church movies like that. I love it.

No I didn't get any pictures in the mail yet, but hopefully I get some this Wednesday. Did you get my pictures that I sent you? Do you want more?

Also I'm SUPER excited that Chanelle isn't graduating this year! Now I can go with her to college! How come she can't graduate in July? Whatever I'm just glad I will be with her at school which reminds me, when do I start signing up?

Well I love you all and hope you have a great family home evening.

Elder Pedersen

Monday, September 12, 2011

No letters?

Well I take it that you didn't have time, or anything to use to write me because I didn't get your E-mails. Well first of all thank you for the package! I loved it and thank you all for the letters; it got here faster than I thought. I actually already had the talk from president Corbridge because he is the area president of Chile and so we already got it but its super good and it inspires me to do better. If you're going to send the picture book you should send some foot souls because I thought they were going to be in the package and I'm in great need of them.

I also loved the talk that Chanelle gave me, I love it and it makes me realize how much faith is involved in this work and how much I need to work to improve mine, as well the talk of the catholic priest was amazing! Man it was like watching some intense movie. Ha-ha thank you also for the other packages as well; a super inspiring package.

Well this week was a good week and we finally got two of our investigators to church! Man I was so happy even though they only stayed for the first meeting. It was also fast and testimony meeting and so I was just praying that the testimonies would reach them and they did, they will totally get baptized but the bad part is that next week is changes and I feel I'm leaving. But we have been teaching a bunch of people and the hard part has always been to get them to church, but this last week I have realized how important the spirit is to bring to our lessons because our words don't do anything unless the spirit is there backing up and affirming the words we say to them.

Anyways, this week was crazy we had to return to the house at like six pm cause of the protests and this next week will be full of parties because it's the big Fourth of July celebration here. So we will see how many homes we are able to get into. It shall be fun.

Well I love you all even though I didn't get a letter this week ha-ha and I hope you like the photos that I sent.
Be your best self!!

Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

Monday, September 5, 2011


Man I love my family, Man that video was hilarious!! I miss goofing around like that and McKenna has gotten so big it seems like! She's turning into a young woman but she is still cute and funny so it's okay. lol.

Also I saw Dads new present to himself and couldn't believe it! I thought Mom hated motorcycles? So dad how did that one play out with mom? lol By the way I thought I might add that in that picture of you two on the bike, you guys look pretty young, people say that all the time here too when I show them pictures.

That's way cool that Brother Bragg was called as the new ward mission leader, He will do great. The Lord truly puts us in positions to grow especially if we don't want them. It's funny how you told me his story cause even me at times as a missionary get scared to talk to people even though I shouldn't but I have definitely improved, I think the fear sometimes falls on all of us at one time or another which is why we always need to trust in the Lord and look for his guidance in those times because I have learned that the moment that we fear, the spirit isn't their because fear is the opposite of faith. God never gave any man fear.

Well this week was a good one because we had meetings with the President and they were very uplifting and he also came to our stake conference and he spoke in the middle which woke up all those who were sleeping. The man is truly amazing and you cannot know him without loving him. We also had zone conference and learned about how to make our studies better and why they are so important. You would think a topic like that would be boring but president was their so it ended up being really good. Our investigators are good but it's so hard to get people to church here. The most frustrating part is they say Sunday is their only day of rest for them but I'm becoming more blunt with that kind of stuff and so for sure our investigators will be coming. It's just hard sometimes in this ward because there are not many members who are here or there with the missionary work and the members hate the ward and always tell us of why they don't like the ward and half the time I'm sick of it because they get offended from the dumbest things from the past, but we are working through it even if they don't like each other. So I just hope when our investigators go this next week they are fellowshipped.

I too heard stuff from the problems that Skyler was having with his companion because he wrote me about it all and I couldn't believe it, Skyler is definitely with him for a reason.

But me and my companion are doing great together now, we realized certain things and learned to laugh over the small stuff except when I'm sarcastic, he hates that .lol But we are working good together and I'm trying not to get on his back about certain rules, I realized that I just need to let him know and explain to him clearly the rules and let him make his own choices cause forcing him will and just makes him mad.

I love being out here and I know as long as we feel the power of the spirit guiding us in whatever we may be doing, we won't have to ever wonder if we are really accomplishing what the Lord wants us to do. I have come to know that the spirit is the key to everything.

I love you all and stay safe, especially you Dad on your crazy
Work hard and be good,

Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

Monday, August 29, 2011

The Testaments...

Thank you for the pictures, man it's crazy to see them all and Skyler and I not being in them but I guess that's how its needs to be. I feel like time is flying when I see pictures like that and tons of little kids running around. But it seems like over all it was fun.

By the way the prophet doesn't come until September and we still don't know exactly what's going to happen but I'm ecstatic and can't hardly wait.

This week was a normal week but it ended great. We are teaching a guy named Elias and his mom. We went over their yesterday and watched The Testaments because some guy in the ward where his brother attends gave it to him for his family to watch and so they wanted to watch it with us. I explained what it was about, and other people of the family were there as well so that's why I had to explain it, so we watched it and when the movie began I started praying so hard so that they would feel the spirit and feel a desire to change and act. And even though I had watched that movie so many times I felt the Spirit super strong testifying to me that it was true and by the end of the movie I looked over and they were all bawling and so I testified that Christ truly came to the Americas and they knew it and I testified that Jesus wasn't just born to bless those in Jerusalem but the whole world and they said that they had never heard of something like that but they knew it was true. I then had a flashback of when I saw that movie for the first time and the spirit testified to a 14 year old boy of these things and when I didn't know what I was feeling I expressed them through crying in the bathroom of the restaurant we were at.

I knew I had a testimony of these things and everyday I'm blessed with the spirit continuing to testify to me and after the lesson I gave thanks to Heavenly Father for hearing me. I felt so blessed to be an instrument in the hands of God to bring the Spirit into the homes of those I teach.

At the end of the lesson they promised to read, pray and go to church. I'm excited to help them progress on the road to baptism.

I can't believe that all of the boys are going into high school! That's insane. McKenna must be getting supper spoiled.

Well sorry this is a short letter but I don't have tons of time. But I love you all and I pray for you all everyday

Have a great week!
Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

P.S. I'm glad you're sending me a photo book, People love when I show them pictures and plus I like having them too.

Monday, August 22, 2011

Let it snow...

Sorry for the delay with the letter but we were doing things today for p day and we ended up being pretty far away from our sector and we just got done looking and walking around so I was pretty tired so we tried coming back to the sector and ended up waiting so long for a bus to take us back; we by the way are the only sector in the zone that has to take micros (buses) and so we were waiting forever so we finally got to the computer place and I couldn't log on for the longest time cause apparently somebody was already on my e-mail account so that kind of made me frustrated but I'm here now so it's all good.

I can't believe that Dad got released from the bishopric; it's crazy to think that he was serving for 4 and half years, doesn't even seem so. I'm excited to see how he takes it; I think he will do really well. I always looked at bro. Bennion and Dad as very great and inspiring teachers for the youth. It's was funny when you said that as people get older it gets hard for them to change and I have found that it's so true because we are teaching a family right now where none of them believe in God, and the son doesn't believe in anything and I could tell that it could be hard to teach them because they have been raised with those belief's but that's why the spirit is the only one that can change people. We went over their this Sunday and we had a really good lesson, I got to know them and they seemed like a really united family and so I focused on families and I really felt the Spirit while teaching them and I could tell that the family was curious when I talked about how the relationships that they have as a family can last forever and that we are not only here to live and die and cease to exist, that God has a plan for the families. I almost felt like crying just thinking how comforting and peaceful it is to know I can be with my family forever. I really think they understood and felt the Spirit as I taught them. So yes only the Spirit can change us even if it's a difficult change.

This week has been a good one, it's been hard because the only people we are teaching can only be taught at night so it's kind of hard, but they are progressing and reading but the only thing that is hard is to get them to come to church, it's the most frustrating thing when you have people promise you and just are so close to being able to be baptized but then none of them show up. We actually are, for right now at least, working with less actives and they are going to church and they love when they come to church. But for this past week it's been kind of hard because our investigators are at bay but so close at the same time.

This last week was also hard because it got colder here than any other time since I have been here in Chile and it actually snowed. The city where I am at is called Puente Alto and they say that it hasn't snowed for 3 years but on Wednesday it did which made it hard too because we would go by people's houses or knock doors and people would say oh I would love to have you come in but it's too cold, come back another day. So yeah it kind of sucked for us because nobody would let us in. Harsh huh? But I got some cool pictures of the mountains with tons of snow on it so that was cool. They also cancelled mutual that day because it was too cold, and what was funny is that it wasn't really even that cold. I guess they are just not used to it.

I love being a part of this work though, it is hard and requires many spiritual attributes and spiritual help but it's all worth it. I love being an instrument in the hands of the Lord. Doing it right brings one of the greatest satisfactions.

I love you all and am thankful for all your prayers, I feel them each day and I know your all rooting for me every step of the way.

I love you all, stay strong
Con Amor.
Elder Pedersen

Monday, August 15, 2011

Modern Day Miracles...

Gosh it seems like you all had the craziest week ever! I cannot believe that BreAnne is married! It's kind of sad to not be able to be there to see it but I can at least receive pictures and know that it was amazing. I feel like so many things are happening back at home, it's insane! I probably won't even recognize the people or place when I return. I felt like Danny Berger just left a bit ago, time really fly's when you're having fun! By the way I still want more pictures of the wedding and everything. It's crazy when a close cousin gets married but it's also comforting to know that another close cousin is in Chile missing it too.

To start off this week has been a lot better and I want to thank Shanna for the pictures that she sent, I got a load of them and it made me happy lol. My sisters always come through, I got filled in on a lot of things that have already happened that I didn't know about, for instance I didn't know that you all went to Sunriver but the pictures that Shanna took were awesome! She is a way good photographer or however you spell it.

My talk went great, it was on missionary work like always and I was nervous that Elder Perez wouldn't take the time that he was supposed to, but it ended up good and people said I did a great job. I talked about determination in this work and in finding the children of God that are lost by sharing the story about Robert Moyal who wrote the words on the Salt Lake City Temple; "Holiness To The Lord". If you don't know the story you should read it because it's a great example of diligence in the Lords service.

All the talk about home coming talks makes me worried that I can come home and do it in English. That will be a it was actually weird because I got a really bad cold on Friday and on Saturday I woke up not feeling well at all and I was worried I would not be able to give the talk but surprisingly I kept working during the day even though it was miserable and it slowly went away, I never had a cold last for so short a period of time. I think the Lord really wanted me to speak.

This week was a good one, we were able to see the Lords hand cause we were able to find many people and  receive a lot of referrals of people who seem golden, so I'm excited for this next week. We have been teaching a guy we found that was actually a referral and we taught him and he is golden as well, when we taught him  he said that he already knows that these things are true because his brother was baptized last week and he and his mom went to his baptism and felt something amazing, so YES I asked him to be baptized but he said that that is the hardest part so we invited him to keep reading and praying and we passed by last night and his mom is cool too and interested.

So a lot of people are coming out of the wood work to teach so I'm excited, I have definitely been praying to my Heavenly Father a lot, I'm learning to always keep a prayer in my heart in everything I do so I act in accordance with the will of my Heavenly Father.

I'm not sure if you have heard about the catholic church down here but a lot of people are leaving the church because catholic priests have been accused of raping children and doing other stuff that is wrong and so it's making it easier to get into people's houses, but really sad. Also you probably have heard but the children and parents are rioting to get the price of schools reduced because its way too high and so right now no one is going to school and basically the teenagers are in control of the schools, so they have lost a lot of time for studies. It's crazy, we pass by some schools and chairs are on the gates of the school and paint on the school. And sometimes people come out at night and with pots and pans bang on them, it's just weird.

It's so crazy but I feel like I'm really understanding and learning why I'm here in this sector and I'm learning greatly why I'm with my comp., I really am learning like Dad said about his mission when he got put into a certain area how much I really can do as a person, I go into lessons sometimes and say to myself how in the world am I going to teach this lesson in another language and make it so people feel the spirit and gain our trust to let us back in their home and it surprisingly works out and I wonder how it's done, if I go everywhere with the spirit I don't ever have to worry. Charity and patience are playing a big role in my life right now more than it ever has and the things that I am learning make me grateful for the time I have to serve these people in Chile even though it may be hard at times, I'm learning how much I really love this gospel and sharing it it's such an enriching experience. Even if there is just one time during the day that I get to share the message of the restoration it brightens my day. And it's because it's all true.

I love the fact that I'm here with Skyler as of this week, actually a couple of missionaries that were in his district in the MTC are actually in my zone so I see them a lot so it's kind of cool. I'm excited for the experiences he will have because he has a lot ahead of him. He showed me pictures and it actually looks just like he is in the same sector as me, it looks exactly like where I'm at.

Well I miss all of you; you all look really good in the pictures that Shanna sent. You all look a lot older. I was looking through all the pictures smiling the entire time.

I love you all
Work hard, play hard

Con Amor,
Elder Pedersen

P.S. The picture uploader is the thing you plug into the computer and you can plug your memory card into it.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Another family member in Chile...Welcome Skyler!!

Querida familia,

Thank you for the letters. Every week I run to see what letters have come and I love the videos and the pictures that you sent me as well. Man I miss you all a lot and no it doesn't mean stop sending pictures cause that only helps. Yesterday was changes and I actually stayed with my companion elder Perez which I figured anyway because the new training program is a 12 week process and so we kind of figured that we would both be staying. This change has gone by so fast and at the same time a little slow because we haven't had lots of investigators. We have a lot now but it's a matter of getting them to progress towards baptism. We also went to change concilios where all the missionaries go to find out what the changes are and President Laycock spoke to us and really made me want to do my very best this change because I know that if I try my hardest the Lord will put people in my way that are prepared to hear this message because I know there are people out there. This Change has kind of felt like an emotional roller coaster with a combination of things but with training and all I have learned a lot and it has made me look for strength from my Heavenly Father in every moment. There is a lot of things that make a great missionary but instead of boggling my mind with all the stuff I need to be and do, I know if I just walk with an eye single to the glory of God in everything I do the Lord will help me and support me through all my trials. My call as a missionary is amazing and we as missionaries shouldn't always fill our head with things we need to do and be to be a perfect missionary but instead be humble so the Lord can form us into what He wants us to be, because we are all trying here and I have found that the mission is the ground or playing field to be a better person. Humility is the key.

Also Mom I loved the idea you gave me that you got from Sister Dunn. I have to speak this next week in sacrament meeting so I will mention it in my talk and invite them to do it. Truly members are the way to finding people. The girl that I was teaching in las condez was found by a member and she was just recently baptized which by the way I really wanted to see because it was an awesome experience teaching her.

It's so crazy how fast time flies in the mission. Today my trainer elder Johnson left to go home and I couldn't believe it because he hit his year mark when he was with me and now he is going home. He told me that the time flies and that the second year goes even faster so enjoy it. I was really sad that he was leaving because I really looked up to him as a missionary and now he is on his way home! So many people left today that were where I am now when I got here. It kind of made me sad and now the mission is super young.

I also loved the quote that Kenny gave, I like it a lot. I'm glad he had a great time, he is growing a lot. Also I thought I might add that Kellin looks so big, gosh get that kid on weights and he will be huge, I saw the picture and I seriously thought for the longest time that he was Jonathan. He just looks a lot older. And McKenna is so cute still which I love; she can't leave that stage until I get

Also I can't believe that Skyler is on his way to Chile! Man he will be a stud missionary, I'm excited to hear his view point about Chile. I'm ecstatic for him and it's even crazier that I will only be 30 min away from him. Crazy huh?

I love you all to pieces and I pray for you all everyday

Tengan una buena semana!
-Elder Pedersen

Monday, August 1, 2011

With God, nothing is impossible!!

That is why I love getting letters from the family each week and why I hit p day with anticipation. They are all super uplifting and it encourages me and gives me energy to hit the next week running.

Man I’m way proud of Dad for running that marathon, I know I walk all day but I can’t run for 10 min. without being wiped-out. I loved the analogy that Dad gave me; I liked the fact that you were able to apply it to the gospel. It’s what President Laycock told me to do, to always look for those testimonies around us and always apply those things to the gospel because sometimes we are surprised how much we will see.

This week has definitely been a better week and I could feel the spiritual push that your prayers gave to me. It’s crazy to think that this change is almost over and next week I will be starting already a new change with Elder Perez. We were able to find a lot of people this last week and we tried to work hard and from it we were able to do a lot of work in the sector.

My companion and I are doing better because two nights ago he just started talking to me about how much of a burden I had on me from training, being district leader and being white washed, then he said with the attitude that he had sometimes he can imagine how much harder he was making it on me. He just started going off on how much of a hot head and whiner he is and I think he felt bad about it and he said it took him until now to realize how much more pressure he had put on me and that I was just able to take it. So we are doing good and getting along and because of that the work has been going a lot better. Because when you actually have a companion by your side helping and trying along with you the work is a lot more enjoyable.

We also had interviews with President that was really good. I have such respect for him and his wife. He is truly a man who looks for the guidance of the Lord in everything he does. I learn something every time I go in for an interview and one of the things He told me was that through perseverance and diligence you can do anything and I know that to be true, he also told me that I can truly change the life of the person I am training because that’s how it was for him. I only hope I can live up to that. But I know if I push through everything with diligence and perseverance and with an eye single to the glory of God, anything is possible. I don’t just want to go through the motions of things just going throughout the day but truly have the desire to find the children of God who are waiting for me. I know I’m not the perfect missionary but I’m doing this work and I’m trying my hardest. I don’t want to go back and I can’t go back, the only way to go is forward; to become the well refined Elder Pedersen.

So how long are you all staying in Utah? I can’t believe Chanelle is going boating with all her friends and stuff. That’s way cool that she got to see her old companions. I was laughing when you talked about her Dad, that’s sad but I can just imagine how dad reacted to it lol, yeah like you said it’s a good thing the other boys didn’t go.

I’m so thankful for all you guys and your prayers, I love you all. Work hard and stay strong.

Con Mucho Amor,
Elder Pedersen

P.S. Is Devin working on his papers?
I haven’t had a chance to talk to him in a while.
And what I desperately need is a picture up loader so
I can send pictures to you all.