Monday, February 27, 2012

The sun shines on and on and on! Yeeeaaah!

Pozo Almonte the first couple days were cloudy so I thought that is how it always was, but boy was I wrong, but it´s ok life is fantastic. 

So this last Saturday we had the opportunity to work with the assistants of the President and I worked with Elder Ricks who served in Pozo Almonte last year during this time, so we visited many of his converts and different families in the Branch and I learned a lot from him and his example of just really becoming friends with everyone because than you really really care about them and love them and no longer desire them to come to church just because we serve for that purpose but because you know that the church is where we will find the greatest joy in the long run. (And I have run a long ways- and then after the marathon being able just to sit and watch General Conference you feel very good) 

Ok and now the story of El Día de Carne (or the day of flesh, is what Elder Hewstone has been calling it) 
Sunday after church we went to the Castillo´s home for lunch which was rice, french fries, and carne (I really don´t know what animal it comes from...hmm..) and right at the end when we were just talking around the table and about ready to start cleaning up we get a phone call from Yubitza (the daughter of our Mamita) who tells Elder Hewstone that we need to come quickly to their home that it´s an emergency. 
      We take off from the Castillo´s and cross Pozo Almonte in 8 minutes, knock and Yubitza answers and informes us it is her father in the backyard, we speed across the house and their is Hno. Fransico in the backyard cooking on their b.b.q. looking just fine. Yubitza bursts out laughing...It was all a joke and they  had cooked a huge amount of food for us. I was stuffed- which many know that is hard to do. 

Other accomplishments/good news: I gave my first talk in Spanish on Sunday about tithing and it went well, and Elder Keele is in my district! (So people know Elder Keele worked with Nathaniel and I at the SCERA back when we were lads)

Have a wonderful day - Because you can choose too.

Elder James O. Gillespie

Monday, February 20, 2012

President's Day Email

Pozo Almonte a little city-  little smaller than Lindon UT, about an hour away from the closest city, and it is flat as a pancake it is pretty nice change from Arica. 

Branch is small- we had about 20 people in the congregation although many people right now are on vacation because it´s summer here and there´s no school. 

Elder Hewstone is from Santiago- only child and has been a member his whole life, he is super kind and trying to learn English so sometimes we struggle to communicate but it is fun, he is super kind and always will tell you that you are doing well. 

We are teaching a couple who the wife is an inactive member and the husband is not a member, (remembering names is still difficult) and things are progressing well and we are hoping for the 3rd of March we will have a baptism. 

This week I studied a lot about gratitude and so for that I´ve been trying to be more grateful for the things we have, and it really is the fastest way to become happy. 

So thank you for all your prayers and support

It´s short- I know, sorry, but 

Have a Wonderful day - because you can choose too. 

Elder James O. Gillespie

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Zone Conference- Transfers- New companions - and a small world

 This last Thursday we had the opportunity to travel about 3 hours South to Iquique, Chile for a Zone Conference with 4 zones, which with that I had the chance to speak with Elder Christensen, Elder Mikesell, Elder Weeter, and Elder Hamblin all from my district in the MTC again. However, originally our zone´s conference was going to be on Saturday in Arica, but at about 4 on Thursday we received a phone call telling us that it moved to Friday in Iquique and we needed to be on the bus in 3 hours. Entonces we ran from appointment to appointment rescheduling and ran to the bus station and left to Iquique. 

     Elder Zeballos of the Seventy spoke to us and just as Elder Merrill learned in his Leadership training we learned about vision and Proverbs 29:18 that without vision we will perish, we need to edify the church and the members it has and bring all unto Christ. Also that we must work every moment- not to waste a second. 

   We returned to Arica and Elder Baker and Elder Ramirez turned around with their suitcases and left for Springville and Columbia. Therefore the last couple days I have been with Elder Castillo newly appointed as District leader. As the calls came in we expected nothing more than to stay in Alborada and receive two new missionaries to join us. Nevertheless I´m leaving, which was a huge shock to me as well I´m sad to leave however I know that I have a work to do in Pozo Almonte, which from what I know is a tiny town but we´ll find out more next week. I will be serving with Elder Hewstone from Chile. 

Ok one quick story: we had the chance to eat lunch with a couple on Sunday, and Luis y Leyha. During our travel from the chapel to their home Luis mentioned he knew a Hermana Gillespie who served in South Chile, and indeed it was the one and only Emily Gillespie  and that´s a small world. 

Have a Wonderful day - because you can choose to
     Elder James O. Gillespie

Monday, February 6, 2012

One Month

     Well, time keeps flying, transfers are coming, Elder Baker and Elder Ramírez are going home, I´m playing the piano in sacrament meeting, and starting to speak Spanish. :)
     Two menos activos came with us to church this Sunday which was good- However, as we were waiting for one to come we were late and so I missed playing the..the..first song (The Spirit of God) and the sacrament song, (Come Follow Me). Nonetheless I played the last song ¨Praise to the Man¨ without to much trouble. 

     A story of last week actually however it was a little miracle- so as I mentioned last week President and Sister Bruce came up to Arica to present the vision for 2012, that we are reuniting the missionary work with the wards and branches. Our focus is on strenghting the church with true strength. Also Sister Bruce has now commanded that our pension´s need to be much cleaner and organized that we must realize that we are living in an apartment that the Lord is renting. (I was very happy to hear all of this) The other part that Sister Bruce spoke about is using our Area books and using it everynight, and we were all asked as well to bring our Area books so she could see them and know what state of condition they are in. Entonces we attend the meeting and after go to lunch at our Zone Leader´s Mamita´s and she feeds us very well, I had the pleasure of finishing off Elder Rick´s (Zone Leader) and Elder Baker´s plates for them. (which I have yet to run into any food I really don´t like [just in case anyone is wondering]) and after words the four of us Elder Ramirez, Elder Castillo, Elder Baker and I get a taxi back to our pension, which this Kia Sophia taxi does not give much room for the people in the back seat to sit, so I placed the area book behind the back seat under the back window....and there it was left....all of our records....
    So after some prayers and phone calls we weren´t able to find out what taxi I left the book in. However, later that night Elder Rick´s calls us and informs us that he has a gift for us. ´´I have a blue book with many important records´´ The taxi drive later saw the other missionaries and gave them the Area book so we have it now and I´m using it every day. 

Story two: We went to the beach today, played Frisbee (It´s really hard in sand) and I think I got sun burned. The end

Have a Wonderful- because you can choose to
     Elder James O. Gillespie