Monday, July 26, 2010

July 26 update

It was "one of those weeks" for Elder Kenison and Elder Balling.  Unfortunately, Matt's companion was sick most of the week, so their activities were pretty curtailed.
we've been inside ALL WEEK. so not much working. we studied a lot and did a lot of stuff at home but not much tracting.
Based on our experience from last year, the winters in Santiago can be a challenge for the elders.  The colder temperatures, frequent rainfall, and other conditions often weaken their resistance.  Although, given the weather forecast for the coming week in the attached graphic, they should have a good chance to recover!

Some "investigator updates" from the few excursions they made:
we passed by for Carlos again and he wasn't there. his wife was though and we set a time to pass by. haha hopefully we can talk to both of them.
we passed by for Marianela and she wasn't there. :( we passed by with a member too. haha but we set another cita with her son so hopefully we can find her. or if not haha teach her son
well shirley was at church yesterday. haha :D she's officially active :D WOOT! Ulices has an almacen (little store) and so we've been passing by and buying bread at night. haha it's been the only time that we leave. haha
We wish Elder Balling a speedy recovery (Matt did say he's much better today), and a more productive week for the elders in Las Industrias!

Monday, July 19, 2010

July 19 update

We always ask Elder Kenison to share the best experience of the week.
umm... that's so hard to say... probably church. when LOTS of people came to church. not like a lot of people in general but just people who haven't been in a while. :D it was awesome! i'll tell more about them next week.
He did let us know that one of those who came was Luigi, whom he mentioned last week as one they really were working closely with.  They were very excited to see him in the meetings this week!  Or as Matt expresses it,
YES HE DID!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! :D HAHA it was amazing :D
We were pleased to get some nice photos that tell a little more about their experiences.  Here's a photo of Elder Kenison visiting a member — Hermana Elena.  When they arrive for a visit, she has the table set and according to Elder Kenison eventually served them about 10 sandwiches before they could get away.  Typical of the faithful members in Latin America!

Meanwhile, back at the apartment, this is what Matt fixes for himself for lunch.  On the left is a concoction affectionally called "Ale Ramen" in honor of Matt's "Brazilian sister" who taught him to make this flavorful noodle dish.  On the right is a kind of "smoothie":
yogurt, milk, a banana, and an apple blended together. haha YUM haha

Elder Kenison and Elder Balling have worked in their spare time to clean up and improve their "pension" or apartment.
this room has no window and before it didn't have light. haha it's really small, which is perfect for studying in the morning because it's easy for the heater to make it really warm really fast haha.  (p.s. i cheated and cleaned my side before the picture.) also we call it our "chilean room" note the flag on the ceiling

They also did some work in the bathroom.
the shower head that we used to not have. haha there was just a hole in the wall. haha and the hot water thing doesn't work. haha now it does. haha all thanks to an hermano (brother) in our ward to fixed it :D

Last week, we found out the address of the "pension" where Elder Kenison and Elder Balling are living in Las Industrias, and were able to locate it on Google Maps.  Here are some photos showing more detail - click to view enlargements.  The first is a view of the whole metropolitan area of Santiago; the little red "A" marks where they are working.

 This map shows the "sector" or area assigned to the elders:

And this closeup shows their actual street and apartment!  If we try hard, we can almost imagine seeing the missionaries walking down the street...

Monday, July 12, 2010

July 12 update

Our communication from Elder Kenison was pretty brief this week.  Apparently they had a district soccer activity in the morning on P-day which took extra time.  It also made him forget his photo adaptor so we didn't get any new pictures.  :(

Some progress on investigators.  We asked about Mariela and got this response:
yeah we passed by and taught her and she said. "so what do my son and I have to do to get baptized?" haha we we surprised haha but we told her that she needs to come to church :D she didn't come yesterday but we have a "cita" to pass by with a member tomorrow :D
This was the rest of the summary of progress:
well we're working with A LOT of less actives. (well in-active members) because there aren't many members without calling in our ward and there is a huge need for more leaders. (like one to help us. haha) so hopefully we'll get some people active. recently we've been working a lot with a guy named Luigi. we've been trying to get him to church. he told us he'd come but he didn't :( we passed by and i asked him, "where were you at 10:00 this morning?" and he looked us straight in the face and said,"i´m sorry I was sleeping." he then commited to feel better. i could tell he didn't feel great but hopefuly he'll go :D all we did is say "hey, le quiero mucho amigo, no se precupe. estamos luchando con usted :D" hopefully things get better. :D
Meanwhile, one of the recent highlights relates to other recent converts:
well. last sunday i had the pleasure of having Gabriel give me the sacrament. haha and also hear that Ayram is the President for the Laurel class haha

Finally, we asked about Elder Balling — how are they alike, how are they different?
like me. well we both can't speak english. haha it's kind of funny. for differences. for Spanish my problem is grammar, for him it's pronunciation. haha but he's amazing at grammar and thanks to elder Tucto i'm "mas-o-menos" at pronunciation. but we've been helping each other out. one big difference is like our high school life. he was the guy who took 5 AP classes (and aced all the tests haha) and I... I regretfully, did only what i needed to or wanted to do. haha but because he took those classes he knows ALOT about like chemistry. haha needless to say i've learned a lot from, how bombs work, to why the moon stays where it is. haha (gravitacional lock) haha kinda crazy. haha
Glad they've been discussing such important matters!!

Since there were no photos this week, we'll share a previous one. Classic Matt creativity... (click to enlarge)

Monday, July 5, 2010

July 5 update

Sometimes "no news is good news." Elder Kenison's response when we asked if there were "changes" this week (transfers):
yes. and... i don't have changes :D WOOT!!!
He really likes Elder Balling and is delighted to stay together another six weeks in Las Industrias.  Their work is progressing slowly but surely.

The other big news of the week was the transition of leadership.  President Richard King and his wife Melinda arrived in Santiago to begin their three years of service.  We think the missionaries each had a very short interview with the new president.  This is what Matt wrote:
when i first met him. he walked in the door and starting, greeting everyone. and he came to me and stopped. and the FIRST thing he says to me was, "Elder Kenison, oh you're the one with the famous blog." haha i just said. "you know about that!" haha it made me laugh.
And then this is the rest of the information Matt was aware of:
he has a big family. 6 kids. and he worked at Novell i think. he lives right in Provo too. so hopefully i'll be able to attend his homecoming in 3 years. haha (that's looking ahead) but yeah he's a great guy. he has a daughter on a mission in, nebraska, michigan, one of those states. and his son just entered the MTC going to Orsorno Chile. haha pretty cool :D also he served his mission in Colombia, so he speaks spanish pretty well :D yeah haha

We got a series of fun photos without much explanation.  Elder Balling and Elder Kenison visited with a family for "Noche de Hogar" (Family Home Evening) with two recent converts.
we made Caca de Mono (monkey poo) or as they say in the states. No Bake Cookies. but i like the name monkey poo more :D haha
From the looks of the missionaries, they are enjoying each other's company and having a great time.

Finally, there is this classic photo of Elder Balling — who looks like he must fit in just fine with Elder Kenison!