Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Week 30

Mommy & All,

I'm emailing today not because we met with Elder Teixeira, but because we had another Super P-Day yesterday and were out on a turf field all day playing.

"If you could kick the person responsible for most of your troubles, you wouldn´t be able to sit down for six months." -Unknown

This week hasn't been the best of my mission but that's okay! I've learned a ton about myself and the things I need to get a lot better at to be able to help these people. Monday night we had another Family Home Evening with Javier and Hermana Velasquez. We talked about talents and how everyone has them even though some people think they don't have any. We also talked about how we all really need to develop the talents that God has already given us and through doing that, we can honor Him and he will give us more. We were over there with Elder Harris and Carasco again and it was great. 

Thursday night everyone was at the office practicing for the Choir they are having Thursday for Elder Teixeira so they gave me a birthday cake and Elder Harris gave me some shirts he bought for you. haha it was cool

On Friday night, Elder Harris had to sing at a dinner thing at our church. We didn't get to stay and watch him but I hung out with him before and I had no clue about the talents he had. Probably because he couldn't have a guitar in the MTC haha. This Brotha is a MONSTER with the guitar in hand. He has tons of his own songs and of course he can sing and its just legit haha. Also, this man has SO MUCH love for everyone everywhere. Especially for me even when I know I don't deserve it. One of the most Christ Like people I know and even though I'm not his comp anymore, I'm still learning so much from him and the Spirit and Faith that he has. I know God put him in my path so I could have a chance to learn and grow.

We didn't get to see Alejandra this week at all because every time we go to her house she is out looking for food for her kids, and her Mom Ramona has been pretty sick. So please keep the Amaya Family in your prayers!

Not a ton to write about this week except that I've learned a lot and will keep trying to improve so i can have the chance to bless and change someones life through the work that I and my Brotha´s around the world are doing. God Speed to all of them.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

Monday, November 21, 2016

Week 29

Mommy & All,

First off, wanna give a Birthday Shout Out to Grandma Christensen this coming Friday! Thank you Grandma for the millions of snickerdoodles I ate at your house, and for raising Max ll to be the Man and Father he is today. You know as well as I do that Grandpa is smiling down and is more than proud of You, My Dad, Cindy, and Dave. Thank You. Also thank you everyone who gave me a Birthday Shout Out this week! So thankful for all the people around me who made me who I am. I apologize if I don't answer all of you back this week, so if I don't email back this week next week for sure! Second off, we have a conference with Elder Teixeira of the Seventy next Monday or Thursday. I've heard both but more likely Thursday. So just in case I don't write next week that is why.

"We should be too big to take offense, and too noble to give it." -Abraham Lincoln

So Saturday morning we were cleaning the church and Elder Aquino was outside cleaning the steps and a drunk guy in the street came up and started talking to him through the gate. They´d already been talking for a few min and by the time I got out there he was screaming at my Comp and I was like what the heck. Apparently he asked Aquino where our "Pastor" was because he wanted money to go buy a sandwich (or more beer) for lunch. Aquino told him he was at work and the guy asked how could he be at work when he just lives off our money. We were both just thinking oh boy here we go. So Aquino told him we didn't have any money to give him. So he looked at me and asked how can Aquino be a Saint if he is snot even helping people. So I told him again we didn't have any money to give him. He told us we had no right to be in the church because we really weren't helping people we were just hoarding all this money from them. Then he looks at us and tells us that when Jesus cones and when the Apocalypse happens that we are going to Hell and we are going to remember him. He also called me Aquino´s boyfriend haha. So at that point we told him to have a good day and turned and walked inside. He then told us to have a very bad day and called us every Spanish bad word he could before we got in. A neat experience for sure haha. But if 'Im being honest, its just another day in Comodoro for us as missionaries. 😎

We´ve been working a lot with Alejandrea, her 10 yr old daughter Milagro, and her 81 yr old mother Ramona. We have baptismal dates for Dec 10 with them but they didn't come to church yesterday. Javier didn't come to church either. But I walked into the chapel yesterday, and the first person I saw was Luis, the "If God Wills It" guy! Apparently God willed it yesterday haha so it was good to see him. We had a family home evening this week with Javier and his Girlfriends family Elder Harris and Carasco came with us because Javier used to go to their ward. We talked about how keeping the Commandments equals Love because it is showing love for our Heavenly Father. Elder Harris said that even though he is white and from the U.S., he still loves all of them and they are his brothers and sisters. Javier said that really impacted him and that Elder Harris was right. After that he said something that really hit me. He said, "just because we may not know a part of the world or people from there, we need to have love for them just for the simple fact that we know they exist."

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

Monday, November 14, 2016

week 28

Mommy & All,

"Your imagination is yours. You can remember the past you choose, rehearse the future you want, and identify with the real and fictional heroes and events of your selection." -John Rogers & Peter McWilliams

Friday, Elder Harris and I hit the 6 month mark here in the mission. Its crazy for us to look back and see how far we have come since the MTC haha which is pretty far. Thursday, we had a Tsunami in Elder Harris' area, so we went on divisions together. It was pretty cool because we never really thought we´d work together out in the field. He is still stressing out about the language pretty bad which isn't fun to watch, but he is working really hard overall. So of course we all know about Donald Trump. On my first contact with Harris, we knocked a door of this big house and an older man came out. As soon as he saw us he started to get this little smile on his face. When Elder Harris started talking, the man looked at him and then me, back to Harris then back to me one more time. And while he is looking at me, he starts pointing at Harris and saying, "Donald Trump, Donald Trump, Donald Trump..." probably about 15 times hahaha and I just started dying laughing so hard. And apparently that's happened to most of the white guys here. But now, everywhere we go whether its with members, investigators, or just contacting, the first thing we get asked about is "what do you think of Donald Trump?" I'm the only one who doesn't get asked a ton about it. Because if someone doesn't already know I'm from the U.S., most people don't assume it. When I first got here, I got asked a ton if I was from the Dominican Republic. When Id say no, almost always the response would be "oh, but your parents are right?" Now that I am learning how to talk, a lot of people ask me if I'm from Brazil because apparently I talk with that kind of accent (I have no clue). I do know that there are black people in Brazil though because one plays in the NBA. And I have had a few people think I'm legitimately just from Africa haha. 

We have a new investigator named Javier that we are working with. We found out about him because his girlfriend and her kids moved into our ward a few weeks ago and they introduced us. He has been an investigator for about 6 months now and his girlfriend, Hermana Velasquez, wants him to get baptized because they are engaged to get married this coming year. The sticky part of course, is that he still has to get divorced from his 1st wife. He is a really cool guy and really nice, but doesn't have much faith. He was baptized Catholic, but only because of his parents, and he never went to their church. He comes to church every week with his girlfriend and her kids. But he believes and loves to focus on philosophy. He is 45 and has studied a bunch of things like that. He told us he doesn't even believe in Adam and Eve because its too weird for him and doesn't make much sense. We've met with him a few times and have just gotten to know him and shared our stories. We are working with him on gaining a very simple testimony. He is even reading the Book of Mormon. We just need him to start praying.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen

Sunday, November 13, 2016

week 27

"Laughter is sunshine; it chases winter from the human face." -Victor Hugo

I wanna start off my email by sending all my prayers and best wishes to Minneapolis Minnesota. Heard one of my main bros out here fighting the fight with us, Garrison, went down with a seizure. Just want him to know He has all our prayers here in the Southern Hemisphere. Prayers back home to the whole Beach Family as well. After taking the field of battle with him for the last 9 years playing football, I´m confident he will make a full recovery.

Not a ton to write about this week. My new comp Elder Aquino surprised me and got here a day early on Thursday morning. He actually surprised everyone because when he got here there was no one at the terminal to pick him up haha. When I met him, he introduced himself as Elder NotHere hahaha so I knew he was gonna be funny. Aqui in Spanish means Here and of course no in Spanish means no or not so Elder Aquino=Elder NotHere. A lot of you already know that so just a refresher. He knows a little more English than my last comp but that's still not very much haha. Anyways, he is 22 yrs old and is from Paraguay, but has lived the last 5 years before the mission in Chile with his Mom because his parents are divorced. He is the middle child of 7 children also haha. He has a girlfriend who is serving right now in Cuzco, Peru. He told me she gets home 1 month before he does and after that they are going to Salt Lake and getting sealed 3 weeks after he gets home hahaha what a guy. He is easily my funniest companion and he helps me to laugh a lot and loosen up. I've only been with him for 4 days now and I've already learned so much from him. Not only about the work and how to teach effectively, but just how to treat people in general. He asks me how I'm doing, if I'm okay, and if I need anything literally about every 10 minutes haha. He cares a lot about the work and even more about his Comp and is just a great guy. 

On Thursday after he got here, he was unpacking and I was reading "Jesus the Christ". He came and sat down at the table with me and asked about what I thought of the book and the Doctrine. I told him I loved it and that if anyone needed a little deeper Doctrine about Jesus Christ just to be able to teach it simply, it was me. We then started talking about why we were out here and what our motivation was behind it. SO I told him how I really debated and thought about not coming out up until probably 5 months before I hit the MTC and just now that I'm out here it has truly changed my life. i was able to testify of the Hand of God and the Light of Christ I now was able to feel as a servant of the Lord. I was shocked after thinking about it, because I had no clue of how much I and my testimony have truly grown until i was able to testify and tell him about where I'd been to where I am now. Still have a long ways to go, but baby steps.

Friday was fun. We have 3 or 4 future investigators we found and are hopefully going to teach this week. But we had one contact that was funny. We were just contacting this street, going house by house. We clap this one house, and a Nun in full dress opens the curtain window. My comp and I both look at each other, then back at her, at each other and back at her, waiting for the other to start talking. She gave us this sly smile because she knew we knew she wasn't going to let us in. But my comp finally started the contact and after about 5 words she holds up her hand and cuts him off. Then she looks right at me and screams through the window, "Would you like some water!?" I´ll just say she is not investigating the Church haha.

Much Love,

Elder Christensen