Monday, February 23, 2015

Feb. 23, 2015

Saludos de Playa Ancha! 
So I am loving my new area. It is a different world. It's so cool, but it has taken some getting used to. When I got to belloto from home I thought, wow it's humid. But the humidity in quilpue is nothing compared to the coast. The mornings are cold and foggy, it's hard to get out of bed.  Then by the time the sun overcomes the fog it's a sauna for a few hours until the wind picks up off the ocean and cools everything off to start the night again. Sometimes it's so humid that it is like its raining. The seasons are all confused down here. Everyone keeps telling me that this is not normal at all.. that the seasons shouldn't be like this. I just smile and think well ya. ha But It was cool this week we were working with some members doing some visits and all of a sudden I realize that there is a tree filled full of parrots. ha Yeah so I saw my first real life parrot that doesn't live in a cage. They are super pretty they are not all different colors they are just green but still super cool. The other day there was like 4 or 5 on a fence and I wanted to take a picture, but right before I could a car drove past and they all flew away. 
Another thing is how crazy the structure of this city is. Valparaiso is the city of Hills. But when I say hills you need to imagine the steepness of maple mountain, and that the flat parts are just the tops of the hills and that they run out to the sea and there are buildings on every square inch. Even in the canyons that are almost straight up and down the people build houses, and houses on top of houses using stilts to keep them level on the way down the edge and even houses and roads in the bottom of the canyons, and then there is stairs and trails in every direction. That is the best way I can describe it for now. It's amazing the impression it leaves. But hiking all over maple mountain everyday looking for people to teach has helped me to lose a little weight. Not only that but the people are of every kind so you always gotta be careful, some will want to ask you for drugs, to marry them, or who just wants to argue. hahah This week I was talking with the husband of one of the sisters in the ward he is not a member because he likes his wine to much or something like that I'm not really sure, he lives in the area of the sister missionaries, but we started talking and it turns out he is a hunter. He showed me his shot guns and his dogs and gave me a Chilean hunting rules book. It was pretty cool. 
This week we have been able to find a few investigators shouting at doors. We found Manuel a 17 year old kid he is reading the Book of Mormon, and it will be cool to see if we can help him and his family progress. Luis is another one we found, about 70 years old, lives alone, his wife passed away and he read Alma 40 so hopefully we can get him interested in the plan of salvation. Last night the member that we were doing visits with called us, and said that they were able to visit one of the other families. That only one of them is a member, and that they want to learn and be baptized so we will be visiting them this week. The only name we know from that family is Claudio he is the 9 or 10 year old son. 
I'm super excited for this week we are going to try to put some baptismal dates in the street. ha but I love the mission. 
So this morning we went to a cemetery where there is a lot of imagantes barried in translation it's name is more or less the cemetery of imigrants. In this cemetery is where the son of Parley P Pratt is buried so I'll be sending pictures of that. Also the majority of the cemetery was in English and German. I looked for last names that would be familiar I found a Schmidt (idk if thats how its spelled Anna and Ryan or not I forget half the English language.) I also found a Searle. I'll send pics. But if anyone wants to do some research the Cemetery is Called Cemeterio de Disidentes. I found lots of German last names that end in Singer. It was pretty cool. Also we went to the place where one of my favorite things started the Chorrianna the restaurate is called J. Cruz it was pretty good. 

But I'm having a great time thanks for all the love and support have a great week everyone!
Elder Biesinger

Elder Gomez

Monday, February 16, 2015

February 16, 2015

Hey all! 
So I had Changes I left Belloto, Elder Velasco, and the heat.  Now I am in Valparaiso! On the coast. I literally can't describe how this place is. I would tell you to look at pictures and try to imagine it but I don't know if it could do it justice. Every morning while I'm getting ready I can look out the window and see the port with the battle ships the cargo ships and even the daily Cruise liner. I can see all the way to the other side of the bay to ViƱa and Con Con. It is amazing.  The only down side is I left the Area where everyone is somewhat wealthy and there are very few fleas, And now I'm a walking blood bag. haha. Its pretty fun.   My area is Called Levarte "A" there are 6 missionaries in this Branch where I'm at.  We have a nice Chapel, and 120 members went to church this week.  The other 4 missionaries are sisters. The district here has plans to become a stake in the coming months. My comp is Elder Gomez From Neuquen Argentina. He is really great, and has been a great comp so far.  I'm excited to be with him, work with him, and get to know him.  I will be serving as a District leader this change as well. So those are the changes! We don't have any investigators yet, again, so back to the search.. they had one named Ana but she didn't pass her interview for baptism because until her son receives a grant for college she won't pay tithing. I have not met her yet because my comp says we just loose time with her. We will see.   Being here on the coast its COLD at night and in the morning until the sun burns away the fog but sometimes that doesn't happen until 4 in the afternoon. ha so it makes things interesting. 

Yesterday in Elders Quorum I thought that one of the Lines from the Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson was pretty great, so I want to share it with you. The translation I got from Spanish Is the following. 
"The Sad Countenance has never won a battle, in Love or in War." -Teachings of Ezra Taft Benson. 
I thought that that was pretty great. Because in all honesty if we just walk around being sad all the time or afflicted how are we ever going to win or accomplish anything? WE WONT. It doesn't matter if the fleas are making me miserable and the hills make every muscle in my legs burn I'll never reach the top of the hill if I just sit there and whine and even if I complain the whole way up what have I accomplished. But how can we be happy and accept our difficulties if we don't understand the purpose. So I want to share the purpose. If you read Abraham 3:24-26 That is the purpose. Everything we go through and feel and learn and live and suffer every triumph every defeat is all part of the test. If we can truly understand our purpose and our reason for everything that we live. We will have a Happy Countenance and we will conquer. Adam fell that men might be and men are that they might have Joy. Ten animo viven felices la gozo de este vida ni es un parte de la gozo de la vida eterna. I hope that we can all smile grin and bare it because it is for our good. God knows. Christ knows. What we live and suffer has a purpose. I believe it is in Alma 5 that says that Christ took upon himself all manner of afflictions and sicknesses so that he will know how to succor us. 
I know that's true. We will never have to suffer more than is necessary for our own Good. Unless of course you keep being wicked and don't be humble hahaha. 

Well I love you all thank you all for the love and support. 
With all my love and Joy
Elder Biesinger 

James and Elder Valesco with some awesome Chilean Grandparents

Last Picture with Elder Valesco

Picture of part of my new area

View of the Stadium from a members porch

Happy Valentines Day

James with his new Companion Elder Gomez

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

February 9, 2015

Well this week was pretty cool! Its been a week of changing weather, service and working to make the kingdom of God stronger. 
To start out. For those of you that saw the picture on facebook. It was from a family that was in my first area. Anibal Pinto, Pablo, Daniel, Martin, and their mom Evelynn. Papa Olivares Cristian had to work and Yerko the other brother was doing other things.  It was awesome that they showed up.  Like my first week here i saw Cristian in the street and he recognized me immediately. So that's how they knew I was here.  I always see people from Anibal Pinto, and its pretty cool. I had to go back a few days ago to do some paper work for my visa, to be in my first area again was like a dream. It was cool. 
This week we did lots of contacts like always, so I wanna tell you about one of them. We "aloed" a door and a man came out named Luciano. He was friendly and said "hey look I gotta give it to you, your guys work hard and you are far from home so I'm always willing to listen to you." Unlike the evangelicals, I just let the Dogs out when they come. Next he said something that you don't hear everyday. He explained how he believes in the Nordic Gods. Thor, Odin and all that Jazz. He is the second person I have found in Chile that believes that.  He wanted to speak some English, and he speaks pretty well so we are going to take him a Book of Mormon this week instead of El Libro de Mormon. Because I know that it can make the Difference. The Power of that book Is Divine. In fact to give you some more back ground of Jose Luis. The recent convert has a story with the Book of Mormon that changed his life. When he started to be a couple with his now wife. She explained to him that she would like to go back to church, and that she wanted him to go with her until he could prove to her that it wasn't true (the Church).  So they started going a little bit, but Jose was very skeptical and didn't want much to do. Until they were going through a very difficult time with a lot of trials. Jose said to his now wife Paula okay look if this Church and this book really is so true,. and from God I should be able to open this book to any Page and find an answer of peace. He Opened the Book of Mormon to a random page and started reading. They tell us that the spirit filled the room and all the problems seemed to disappear. From that point forward they have progressed in leaps and bounds. The Book is Divine. 

 That's just a few of the best stories from my week.  I hope that everyone is doing great! Changes will be interesting this week, but I'm loving the Mission. Its honestly so great to wake up every morning and know that your whole day will be dedicated to the service of God. To the salvation of those that will believe and the Gathering of the 12 Tribes.

 Until next week. 

Elder Biesinger

James district

Eating Watermelon with Emilia and Daniel. Members who are preparing to get married!

Jose Luis and Paula

James with the Olivares family

Monday, February 2, 2015

February 2, 2015

Hey North Americans!

So this week was pretty cool! We finally had some good finds and contacts. First off we finally got in contact with Javiera and Pamela. They are sisters 20 and 22 years old. We found them just knocking a random door. Not knocking of course yelling (Alo), but yeah, we got in contact with them after they were gone for a few weeks in Santiago for vacations.  Also we were walking in a really busy part of our area and it was market day (Wednesdays and Saturdays) It was Wednesday and normally we always offer to help older people, or people that appear to need help carrying their groceries.  On market day in this part of our area we don't, because there are thousands of people, and they are all not in a great mood, and no one ever accepts help. But anyways we saw these two little ladies walking, and they had a lot of bags. So we stopped and asked them the one (Violeta is her name) accepted help right away. She said she was having a hard time and said that we had to be help from God. The other refused. So we carried Violeta bags two blocks to her building, then up 4 flights of stairs to her department. Violeta is almost pure German. Blue eyes blonde hair, and her four last names from her grandparents are all European. She said that she had a lot of interest in finding out more about them. It clicked, and we started talking about genealogy and we gave her a Book of Mormon. It will be cool to see if she progresses. 
Also this week I had a very strong experience. There is a recent convert that accompanies us a lot his name is Igor. He is 20 years old and it the only member in his family. All the rest are Catholic and want nothing to do with us. One day he calls us and says, Elder I need you to come to my house and teach my Grandpa. It was the weirdest thing because he had asked us not to ever go to his house because it caused a lot of problems, but we went. His Grandpas name is Luis. Well, we get there and Igors mom had given him permission to invite us because Luis is very sick and cant talk now. So he asked if we could give him a blessing. After talking with them for a while and getting to know the situation we gave him a blessing.  In the blessing I felt strongly the feeling that he was in a bad situation. The words. Let your family serve and help you and Leave them in peace came strong. After the blessing we left. 4 hours later Igor called us and was in a bad way. We met up with him and he told us that his grandpa had been rushed to the hospital and that he has lung cancer and is more than likely not going to make it. It was a humbling experience. The power of the Spirit and Priesthood is real. 

This week I received a few more unprovoked comments on my Spanish. Its really coming along I'm one of the Elders with the least amount of time in the mission, in our Zone. Elder Velasco assures me that there is only one Gringo that speaks better, so it's good and I have been blessed. People ask me frequently if I learned Spanish in Spain... So I guess I need to start saying the z s and J more like a Chilean and less like a Spaniard.. ha 

As far as my thoughts from the Book of Mormon. I have been really inspired by Abinadi. In Mosiah 13:9 He says that after he shares his message it doesn't matter what happens as long as he is saved. He is a hero from the Book of Mormon. In our live how many of us want to live up to them? I know I do, He understood the purpose of life. That nothing of earthly matter is truly important if we gain our salvation. In Mosiah 17:7-13 is the trail and the death of Abinadi. This man knew that He was going to die. In verse nine he says that he allowed himself to be captured by them. He stood up for what was right even unto the death. He will be rewarded. Alma tried to save him but was unable to, and was cast out. Abinadi converted Alma, and Alma later went on to baptize 204 souls in the next Chapter. The power and the Faith of Abinadi Changed the History. He could have retracted his statement to spare the feelings of King Noah, but he would have to deny the truth to do it. I hope that we can all be so Valiant and understand the meaning of life and the Blessings of standing up for the Truth. 

I hope everyone is well. I love you all I am so happy to be here, the time is moving along. Sometime it can be hard to preach to people who are so blind, but I know all things are possible and Miracle are brought to pass by Diligence. 

Love you

Elder Biesinger
Picture of the micro(bus) on a Sunday morning

James and Elder Valesco on the Micro