Monday, 28 September 2015

Saying Good-bye to Teenagehood

Thanks all for the birthday wishes!  Wow does it ever feel weird to be 20!  I still feel like I´m a teenager and have the urge to say 19 when people ask me my age. the mission a lot of wrinkles have started showing up!  WHAT HAPPENED I´M ONLY 20!!!  #lifeofamissionary. Walking all day in the sun, stress and diet will do a lot.

Super excited to receive bday package from home! Thanks mom and dad!  Canada, eh?

Micro SD card with loaded with EFY(approved) music and USB connector

Shoes!  Yeah!  I REALLY needed a new pair.  This was so timely!

Can't live without Brookfield chocolate!.... and a bunch of other goodies!

On the 22nd, Hermana Lockling's birthday, we had lunch at the house of the Jarpa family.  They had a cake of manjar (kind of like dulce de leche - so good!) and sang for us and gave us a pack of cookies with manjar (I´m going to have to bring some back home with me) as a present.  The little miracle that we saw on her birthday is that we had a really spiritual lesson with Luis. We´ve decided that we needed to focus more on the Book of Mormon so we introduced it in a special way to help him apply it to his life.  Then we shared our testimonies. He said that he felt the Spirit when he read it!  Yay progress!
On the 23, the Jerez family shared a black forest cake (so good) and sang for us. There´s this thing that they do here in Chile on your birthday. You have to take a bite out of the cake after they sing.  But...Hermano Yoni decided to push the cake into our faces!  We got frosting all over our clothes and in our noses! Good thing that we live in the house next to theirs so we made a quick change after lunch.  
On 23, it was rainy and the weather was really ugly.  We were a little unanimated so we decided to pray in the street for direction to find someone that the Lord had prepared. We felt that we should knock on some doors around the house of an old investigator.  We knocked on a door that I´ve knocked on probably 50 times in the past 6 months I´ve been here, and a blond haired, blued eyed women answered the door.  We were a little surprised to see each other. She gave me a big hug and said ¨Una otra Rubiacita!¨(Another blondie!) She let us in and we began to talk. Her name is Edita and her parents were from Germany.  She´s a very smart woman and had a lot of questions about how we interpret the Bible.  We shared the Book of Mormon with her and shared our testimonies.  She was very happy to accept it and said that she would share it with the rest of her family.  We´re going to visit her again this week.  I can´t wait to see how it goes.  I know it was inspiration that my companion and I felt that this week we should focus more on the Book of Mormon.  I also know that Heavenly Father listens to and answers our prayers.

Today we had an activity in Lota with la Zona (zones in) San Pedro, Coronel y Lota.  It was great to see a lot of the missionaries from other Zones.  I think about half of the missionaries from my first zone (Victoria) were there.  We played volleyball, egg toss and other games (I don´t know what you call them).  After, we ate a big BBQ with choripan (like a chorizo hotdog/sandwich) and steak! 
Lota is really beautiful. It´s a port city built into the mountain side.  It´s all hills (A workout and a half to climb), but I wouldn´t mind getting transferred there.  Unfortunately I don´t have any pictures of the city.  I couldn´t get good pics from the bus. 

Love you lots!

Until next week!

Hermana Jakob
More bday photos....
With Hermana Pemberton.  Remember she was my CCM (Missionary Training Centre) companion.  We live in the same house, different companions though.

The birthday girls



Monday, 21 September 2015

Earthquake and the Day of Patriots


What a crazy week!  A LOT happened!  Let´s start with the terremoto (earthquake).   We were walking in the street, contacting people when we saw the power lines swinging in the wind...but there wasn´t any wind. I thought, ¨Hey! That´s weird,¨ when we were walking past the house some members.  Suddenly they ran out their door yelling ¨Hermanas!  Está temblando fuerte!¨ (Sisters!  It's shaking really strong!) We talked with them for a bit outside to help them calm down when an alarm started to sound on their cell phone.  Everyone has an alarm on their phone in Chile that the government initiates when there is danger of a tsunami after an earthquake (Chile is one of the most earthquake prone countries in the world).  Within 5 minutes the streets started filling up with cars and people fleeing for the hills.  We had just had a capacitación (training meeting) of what we should do in an emergency when this happened (inspiration from Hermana Bluth - Mission President's wife).  So we went to the house to wait for a call from our zone leaders and prepared our emergency kits.  We ended up having to go to the stake center (larger church building where more people can gather)to wait.  We were there until about 11:00pm playing ping pong and "Mafia".  The tsunami never hit here like it did in the north but it was an interesting experience to say the least.  A lot of people here are still scared because of the big terremoto (earthquake) and tsunami de 2010.
(Note: In 2010 a massive earthquake measuring 8.8 hit the Concepcion area triggering tsunami warnings in 53 countries around the Pacific.  525 people lost their lives and approx. 9% of the population in the affected areas lost their homes)  

This week we also celebrated the Day of Patriots.  I have never eaten so much BBQ or meat in the 10 months I´ve been in Chile! I am not complaining! The BBQ here is VERY good!  On the 18th, we went to the Laguna Grade to fly kites and buy stuff at the fundo.  I found a booth of all vinyl in Spanish but they were really expensive so I didn't buy anything.  We bought Churros and left to prepare for Cristian´s baptism!  It was so great to see all his family there to support him!  Presidente Bluth and Hermana Bluth came to the baptism too!  I was a little worried how they would baptize him because he has partial paralysis.  He can´t move is left arm or left leg.  In the end, todo salió bien (It all went well).

Having a good time at the Laguna flying Chile kites with the Hermanas.
At Cristian's baptism.

I just love to see the change and light that grows in the eyes of the people we teach.  I love to see them accept the evangelio de Jesucristo (gospel of Jesus Christ), to help them find the purpose of life and see them come to know and feel that they are children of a Heavenly Father that loves them. 
After the baptism, we celebrated the 18th with a big fiesta!  The Latinos sure know how to party!  I have never seen so many people dancing! Young and old, it doesn´t matter your age!  We also had a Karaoke contest... they wanted me to compete but my knowledge of Spanish songs is a total of.... 0! One of the traditional dances here is called" La Cueca".  Another is called the Huaracha (it's super ridiculous and made me laugh).  
Ah!  I´m running out of time! I wish I had more so send all the details but it´ll have to wait until next week.

Les amo mucho!  (Love you lots !)

Hermana Jakob

Thursday, 17 September 2015


Just writing you all to let you know that we´re all fine here in Chile. They've ginven us permision to write and let you know how we´re doing. Yes, there was an earthquake in the north around Santiago but we just felt a little bit of movement here.  There was a tsunami warning after and we had to meet together in the Stake Center (church building), just in case but nothing happened here in Concepción.

Love you lots! Don´t worry everything is fine here in our sector.

Hermana Jakob

Monday, 14 September 2015

Oops! I have an addiction!

This week....I´m not sure what to say. For interesting events...there´s been a lot of preparation for the 18 de septiembre (day of Chilean Independence).  There´s Chilean flags everywhere flying in every house.  We hung up a flag too in front of our house to join in the festivities.  Though we´re not Chilean (my companion is though), we´re Chilean at heart!

We´ve been eating a lot of empanadas.  Oh-my-gosh-they´re-so-good! I think I have an addiction!  It´s like a pizza pocket but waaaay better.  Filled with meat and onions, eggs, merken, and olives.  I could eat about 10 all at once.  
(Merken is a traditional Chilean seasoning created by the indigenous Mapuche people. The local version is made from Goat's Horn chile (aji cacho de cabra), which is mildly spicy and smoky, but not nearly as strong as chipotle chiles are)
On Saturday it was international day of service.  They Soc-soc (short form for Relief Society - the church's organization of women) and nosotros dos (the two of us) went to the chapel to help clean-up the church grounds and building.  After we ate lunch and shared stories. We had a chance to share a bit of the gospel too.  Some people from the street entered the church to see what it was all about.  We gave them a tour and invited them to attend on Sunday.  Needless to say we have new people to teach!  :)
Christian is going to be baptized on the 18 de septiembre before the activity starts.  I´ll be sure to send lots of pictures!  The 18th (Chilean Independence) is bigger than New Year´s or Christmas.

This week I gave a talk about the importance of sanctifying the Sabbath Day.  What a gift it is that Heavenly Father has given us a day to relax from our normal work and focus on the spiritual things. We can increase our knowledge by reading from the countless books on different aspects of the gospel or doing acts of service.  We can spend time with our family, improve the bonds between us and teach the gospel to our children.  I know for me, I´ll always remember Sundays as a day we got together to read the scriptures and share what we learned in church.  After, we played card games or had a ¨jam sessions.¨  Looking back I can see how this time together helped strengthen our family.   
I invite you all to read the talk that Elder Neilson gave during the April conference.

Love you all lots!  

Hermana Jakob
(Mom's Note:  *Sigh!*  No pics again!  Oh well... more blackmail photos!)
Taken at last year's church Labour Day BBQ and mud slide.

Manning the Bouncy Castle at church picnic.

Last September at Dairy Dee-lite in Brantford.  Yum!

Monday, 7 September 2015

Zone Attack!

Familia y Amigos  (Family and Friends)

This week was full of work. We have a youth que nos acompaña (that accompanies us) to help us contact.  We visited a few of her friends and they are really receptive to the gospel.

On Saturday, we had a Zone Attack!  All the missionaries from San Pedro came to La Marina and we went on splits (where they pair up with other missionaries and other members) with the members to find less active members, share a message and invite them to church.  We saw a lot of miracles! There are a lot of people out there who want to come back but they have a lot of fear.  They need support and encouragement; a friend to help them feel comfortable in the process of returning back to church.  I know it is so critical to do our visiting teaching and home teaching.  I´ve seen the change that happens with the people that you visit.  I know I´m going to change my ways and be a way better member missionary when I get back home!

I was reading an article in one of the Liahonas (church magazine) and came across this quote:
¨Sincere prayer is the heart of a happy and productive life.  Prayer strengthens faith.  Prayer is the preparation for miracles.  Prayer opens the door to eternal happiness.  The Father of us all is personal, ever waiting to hear from us, as any loving father would his children.  To learn to communicate with Him, to learn to pray effectively, requires diligence and dedication and desire on our part.  I wonder sometimes if we are willing to pay the price for an answer from the Lord." -Bishop H. Burke Peterson, 1973

I know that through the power of faith, prayer and work that we can see and llevar a cabo (carry out) these miracles.  

Les Amo mucho!  Hasta le proxima semana!  (Love you lots! Until next week!)

Hermana Jakob

Pictures from our Zone Attack

Photo of el Rio (river) Bio-Bio behind the house of a member

A photo we took during correlación (correlation meeting)

Tuesday, 1 September 2015

Simplicity and the Professor's Final Exam

This week was really good!  Heavenly Father blessed us in many ways.

Cristian , our investigador (investigator), is golden.  He´s searched long for the truth.  He has studied with the Catholics, Adventists and Evangelicals and has a lot of knowledge of the Bible. He came to church again and loved the 5th Sunday devotional.  He is so excited to be baptized!  His family says that he talks about it everyday.  They´re really good in helping answer his questions and doubts.  His cousin said the other day, he was reading about the Gospel of Jesus Christ and yelled ¨Are you kidding me!  It´s that simple!  Everything I´ve read and studied finally makes sense!¨  

In that it is true.  I know that the doctrine of Jesus Christ is simple, easy to be understood.  We don´t need to make it complicated.  

I´d like to share a story with you all that I heard.  This week in the ward, there was a focus on serving your fellow men.  

In his monthly ward newsletter a young bishop wrote of a group of religion instructors at a theological seminary who were taking a summer course on the life of the Saviour, -one focusing particularly on the parables.
When the final exam time came, the students arrived at the classroom to find a note on the table stating that the exam would be given in another building across the campus.  The note also said that the test must be finished within a 2 hour time period that was starting from that very moment.  
The students hurried across the campus.  As they ran, they passed a little girl crying over a flat tire on her bike, an old man hobbling painfully toward the library with a cane in one hand with spilled his books on the sidewalk.  On a bench, by the union building, sat a shabbily dressed bearded man with a sign: ¨I need money to eat. Please help me.¨
Rushing into the other classroom, the students were met by the professor, who announced that they had all failed the final exam.
The only true test to whether they understood the Saviour´s life and teaching, he said, was how they treated people in need.  Their weeks of studying had taught them a great deal of what Christ had said and done.  But nothing they learned in class was as effective as the lesson they learned from the professor´s exam.

We can read and study and grow in our knowledge of Jesus and his teachings but it doesn´t serve a purpose unless we apply what we've learned.  Jesus taught not only to be heard but to be followed. 

I feel like I have really grown this cambio (transfer) to have a heart full of charity.  I love all the people I talk to! Even if I don´t know them!  I thank Heavenly Father for all of ways he has blessed my life and for the opportunity I have to be His hands and help bring blessings to His children here in Chile.

Love you all lots!  Hope you have a good week!

Hermana Jakob

We found wigs in a member´s house and had a little fun!