It’s the Most Wonderful Time… of the Year!!

Its the best time of the year! Hermana Clawson is FULL ON Christmas spirit! We’ve got the trees decorated, the stockings up, and singing christmas hymns every morning. I’m really happy to be here with lots of people that I love, a LOT. Its gonna be one of the best Christmases ever! But heres what happened this week:
First off, yes Mom, I’ve heard a TON about “He is the Gift” , or “El es la Dadiva”. Its HUGE for the missionaries… we are using it in every lesson, basically every contact that we have with a person. I love it! And honestly, its helped us find new investigators!
Something else fantastic: Leadership council in Rancagua! And this one was EXTRA EXTRA special. First off, when I got to the mission home, Pres Warne comes out and says, Hey Sister Clawson, your friend is here. I’m super confused, but then look and see my friend BRAYDA EGBERT from Weber State! Her brother is serving/served here, and the whole family went to pick him up! It was THE craziest thing thats ever happened to me in the mish! I got to meet the whole fam, plus her brother ended in Paine, where he taught the husband of Carmen and Angi… he got baptized this last Saturday! Now the WHOLE family has been baptized! My heart could explode from so much happiness!!! Plus, in this council I got to see Hna Ayre, my trainee… is now TRAINING and a COORDINATOR, all at once! And lastly, we learned from Pres Warne that the mission work is changing… its not going to be so much focused on numbers, we are only going to count baptisms, church attendance, and a few other things individualized for each mission. Guys, thats a major change, like from the memorized”discussions” to Preach My Gospel! The Lord is hastening His work! 😉
Something else I learned this week is that most of the times, the numbers really don’t matter. The numbers that we had this week did not reflect in any way the work we put in. And even though in some areas we thought we didnt do so well, at the  end of the week looking back, some things went fantastic! For example, we found some awesome new investigators, plus lots of people went to church, including a menos activo family that we have been teaching since I got to Rengo!
And, I also had lots of fun this week. One: a sweet noche de hogar with Gina, a 14 year old recent convert. Her family is ALWAYS home when we visit, but never listen. So we planned this to get them involved. They LOVED it, especially the games afterwards, we laughed a TON. And as a result, her sister in law came to church with her on sunday for the first time! Woohoooooo!!! Two: Today all 8 missionaries plus friends ((a few members and investigators) went to the church, we made and ate completos, and played the m&m straw game. Had a great time!!
And well, that was a great week. Not too trunky yet, but maybe almost…. NO! Never! NO but really, I’m excited to keep working hard up until the end!

Birthday Week! :)

Im twenty threeeeeeeeeeeeeeee. Feels pretty weird, but I’ve also been saying that I’m 23 years old for the past few months. Its kind of a thing here to say it before your actual birthday. But it was a really fun, really special week.

We saw lots of special people, and I included some pictures. Alejandra, an investigator, some pics of my zone/district, etc etc.
I think that the craziest thing about this week was the fact that it was my birthday sunday, plus Hna Cueva’s last week in the mission. Saturday we planned a surprise goodbye party with some members and investigators, it was amazing. Her companion Hna Gonzalez from Santiago even came to visit!
As for my birthday, I woke up, knelt down to pray, and THEN remembered that it was my birthday. The hermanas brought me a little cake and candle, balloons, and sang Feliz Cumpleaños. Later we obviously went to church, and attendance was super low, which was kinda lame. But the talks and classes were fantastic, all focused on the 10 commandments. Afterwards we had lunch with Hna Blanco, who has a son in the mission who just so happens to have the same birthday as me! She fed us 8 missionaries her famous empanadas, plus a CAKE. 🙂 Later we got fed TWICE, we visited Hna Paola and family and they gave me the giant stuffed bunny rabbit, plus we saw Hna Villacura and Claudia. Lots of members called or told me happy birthday, it was SO special. I LOVE this area!! 🙂 And THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU for all the gifts! I opened the package before church and wore one of the necklaces! I loved every single thing, even the random scooby doo van. hahahahaha.
And well, not going to lie, I didn’t do ANYTHING special for thanksgiving, other than write in my journal what I’m thankful for. And I guess I should share some of those things with you all. I’m thankful for:
* The Atonement of Jesus Christ. I’ve learned a LOT about the Atonement and how it really is the center of EVERYTHING. I know my Savior loves me and that is the most precious knowledge I have.
* YOU ALL, my lovely family. 🙂 You are my greatest blessing and I’m SO SO SO grateful to have you all as my support.
*The mission. Best experience I could have ever asked for.
*Lots lots more, basically everything. 🙂
And well, I guess its time to tell you all what you’ve really been waiting for. TRANSFERS……
I get to finish my mission in RENGO! 🙂 🙂 🙂 I’m SOOOOOOO excited. The crazy part is that I won’t be companions with Hna Colil, but she’s staying in the house! She’s going to be companions with Hna Aizama, finish her training, and work in their area. And my final companion will be Hna Rodriguez from Peru. Presidente already told me that she will need some special help and that he felt I was the person that could help her. So its going to be an interesting last transfer, but I feel good about it. 🙂

Feliz Cumpleanos to me :)

Its been another great week! And this week is gonna be even better, especially Sunday. 😉 But it will be a little crazy, cause we will find out transfers on Saturday, then birthday, then pday, then transfers. Woo!

For this week I’d just like to tell you about some of the people we are working with and some experiences we had.
First off, Hna Archila and I contacted a way nice lady last transfer, but we finally found her again with Hna Colil. She’s named Carmen and shes amaaaaaaaaaaazing. The last time we visited was the 3rd visit and to start off the lesson she OFFERED to do the first prayer, but “with help”. And in her prayer she thanked Heavenly Father for putting us in her path, and she hopes we can keep visiting, because its helped her a lot. That is one of the most special things a missionary can hear! 🙂
Also, Alejandra. That woman is SPECIAL. First off, she’s gonna get baptized, its like 99% sure, but she just needs to go to church. She gave us gifts (jewelry) and is teaching US more than we teach her. She’s sharing what she learns from us with her Jehovah’s Witness friend (they watched Mormon Messages together!), and she shared a personal experience about forgiveness that got us all crying.
There is another Carmen that is the neighbor of Hna Villacura/ Queen of Rengo/ member that used to live in SAN JAVIER. She’s helping us a TON with visits, quitting smoking, and gets mad at her when she doesn’t come to church after committing to. haha.
Other lovely people: Edith and Gladys LOVE me, Vicky and Nicolas told us all about the Catholic church and gave me a rosario, and Hna Paola (Aracelly’s mom) is SO my type of person (we played a “endure to the end” game and she got MEGA competitive!).
Lastly, I’d like to end with a funny experience we had as a house. Hna Cuevas told us that Hna Aizama (her comp) woke up like a “evangelical rocker”, cause of her singing, etc. Later when we started off our comp studies together, we kneeled down to pray the 4 of us, when randomly Hna Cuevas stood up. I said, “Who’s the evangelical rocker now?” and the other hermanas “Hallelujah!” “Amen!”. And we all DIED laughing. Maybe it doesn’t sound funny, but just trust me, you’d have to live it to understand. 😉
And well, thank you all for the birthday wishes. I know its gonna be a great day! Love you all millions and thanks for being the very best! 🙂 🙂 🙂
Love,
Hermana Clawson
Happy birthday to Hna Clawson!
Noche de hogar with my fave family from San Javier (Hna Villacura, Hna Rosa, Claudia, and Javiera)
Noche de hogar with Familia Gomez and Familia Gomez (members and investigators!)

Another week, another nickel…

So family, another fantastic week. Went faster than usual cause we had pday on tuesday… ha.
Some highlights:
I GOT TO GO BACK TO PAINE! I can’t even explain how cool it was. I went with the other hermanas to a different part of the town, but I still remember everything! We saw like, 6 members and they still recognized me! And even though lots of things have changed, like the house they live in (its the same, but theyve reorganized and remodeled lots), new buildings, etc, its still my Paine. It was fun to see some of the same decorations in the house (including the chore chart that my trainer Hna Ruiz made), etc etc. But the best part was getting to see some of my favorite people like Gabi, and CARMEN. She got baptized right after I left Paine, but she always says that we were the first hermanas to visit her house. And she was super impressed with my spanish, I could hardly speak when we first visited her! She and her family are all doing well. Now her husband is listening to the elders and has a baptism date too! And as a family they have the goal of getting sealed in the temple! It was MORE than rewarding to talk to her and hear that!
Other cool things: the members have been GREAT in helping us, especially with Family Home Evenings in their houses, so we can invite investigators, and have a way cool experience together. And lots of the investigators we are working with have FRIENDS that are members, which helps SO much in the process.
One of them is Oscar, who was a reference from the Ureta family. And he got baptized this Saturday!!! He was SO excited. The actual day came and he said he was a bit nervous, but when he came up out of the water he was smiling, super happy and relaxed. Plus, he loves to sing and play guitar, so Hna Colil and I organized a choir with us, the elders, and some members to sing Mas Cerca Dios de Ti (Nearer my God to Thee) and it turned out AMAZING. Basically everyone was crying their eyes out, no big deal. Plus, one of our investigators came and she LOVED it. It was her first time entering the chapel and it was a fantastic experience for her. She’s preparing for it too. 🙂 AFTER the baptism, another investigator showed up and we gave her a tour of the chapel. She thought it was going to be all dark like the catholic church, but she was impressed.
And Sunday we had a mega confirmation day- FOUR people were confirmed and received the gift of the Holy Ghost. We had stake conference last week, so we had to do them all this week. But it was super special to hear all the blessings, cool moment for them all! 🙂
And well, thats all for now. Keep your eyes out for some letters, I was a little late in sending it this month, but its on its way!
Love you MORE THAN CHOCOLATE COVERED CAKE WITH CHERRIES ON TOP.
Hermana Clawson
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Photos
*PAINE!!! I saw hna Carolina + Patty,  Gabi, and HNA CARMEN!!
*In Paine I found a registro from Amy.
*We had a baptism! Oscar Alex Carrasco LAYTON. Yep, thats his name.
* Trabaja con el- Work with him. I LOVE YOU AND I LOVE WORKING AS A MISSIONARY.

Really, what are the chances…?

I normally only post letters from Kellie, but after Kellie wrote about going to the Safari Park in Rancagua, I had this experience that I shared with Kellie…

 

So I was in the Instacare lobby with Joey – doesn’t happen too often.  Pick up Time magazine – probably haven’t looked at Time magazine in over a year. It’s a current edition…
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Get through  only a portion of the magazine and see this…
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So, I think back to Monday and say that’s crazy – kind of like what Kellie did for P=day.  So, I read the caption…
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Of all the places for Time magazine to go in the world, and off all the attractions in Chile to chose for a photo shoot.  And of all the weeks to run this set of photos…
… what are the chances…!

 

Kellie at the same Safari Park the week prior to seeing this article…

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BEST WEEK EVER x A MILLION

So like I said, this transfer has been full of travels, but its been SO fun.

Monday we spent in Santiago, the doctors visit went well, plus I bought some Chilean souveniers. I CANT RESIST.
Tuesday we headed to Rancagua in the mission home for Leadership Council. Presidente & Hermana Warne recently went to Argentina for a training thing with all the other mission presidents in southern South America, so we got to hear all about it and learn from it too.
Wednesday we had interviews with Presidente Warne. You know, our leaders really are inspired. This transfer has been a little tricky for me, because of Hna Colil’s diabetes. I had lots of questions and concerns going into the interview, but President knew exactly what to say.
Thursday we had district meeting and I got to talk a bit about what we learned from President’s meeting in Argentina. It was mostly about understanding and having a testimony of the doctrine for OURSELVES first, and then we will be more powerful in sharing testimony with everyone else. Things like the Book of Mormon, the temple, tithing, etc were also some focuses.
Friday was a busy day of work. I especially loved the lesson with Oscar. We always have our lessons in the chapel with a member, while they are doing Zumba. We got to explain a bit about the temple, and how we will be able to go there someday. In fact, he was so excited to be baptized for his mom and grandparents, he thought we could just write the names on papers and hold them in his hand as he got baptized. Awww, presh. We explained how we have to go to the temple for that, and he also said that even though he doesn’t have plans to get married, “she’d have to be a member”.. HE IS SO AWESOME. And to answer your question dad, he was a reference from a member family, the Ureta family. Aracelly, the little girl got baptized last transfer and we helped their family be reactivated. He’s way good friends with their whole family, plus a bunch of other members. In fact, he already looks like a member cause he participates in the choir and goes to the activities. Ha ha.
Saturday JOSE GOT BAPTIZED. He was a little nervous, but it all went really well. He is the funniest old guy I’ve ever met. He says that he’s our “regalon”, or golden child, and when we called him to ask if he’d be home he said, “yeah, because no chica has called me to go out…hahaha. Oh, and when he was dressed in white, he said, “I’m an angel!”. It was a wonderful baptism service, with 2 kids that also got baptized. Happy happy day.
Sunday I LISTENED TO AN APOSTLE. And you know what the coolest part was? HE SPOKE SPANISH. They came with interpreters prepared, and his wife used one, but he decided to give it in spanish. And the messages were AMAZING. I feel SOOOOOO lucky that I could be here in Rancagua to listen to this conference.
And Monday was super amazing too. Elder Christen and his wife came for our MISSION conference, all 250 of us all together. I got to see all my friends, plus hear a bunch of INCREDIBLE messages. I played the piano and it went really well. But I was a little nervous, I’ve never played in front of so many people before. Plus everyone got a bit emotional when the choir sang “Come unto Christ”, even Presidente!  It was honestly, so amazing and I received answers. Cool how that works. 🙂 But wanna know something that made me sad? There are SO many new missionaries, I don’t recognize hardly anyone. 😦 But it was fun to see people like Hna Fast, Hna Ayre, Hna Mendez, Hna Archila, Elder Horsely. Oh Matt, guess who are companions and Zone leaders together? ELDER MCGEE AND ELDER ADAIR. Como se dice DREAM TEAM. hahaha.
And now for our pday!! Also, super awesome. We went to the Safari Park!!! Where the lions jump on the trucks and eat meat and lick your hands! It was so crazy, it was RIGHT ABOVE MY HEAD.
And this week is going to be crazy too. But I feel SO blessed to be a missionary, and for this mission in particular. 😉
Love you all and hope to see lots of pics in the near future…. its the only birthday gift I want!!
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Love,
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Hermana Clawson
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The baptism, matching bracelets, safari, LIONS, and a sweet sand sealion in Rancagua. 🙂
Leadership Council

Happy Halloween!

Sorry, but lets be honest, now that my time is running out in the mish, the holidays are even more normal than usual. I did buy myself a bag of gummy spiders, just like last year. Oh, but I did do something mega crazy. A member made sushi (we learned and helped) and I TRIED IT AND I HATED IT! IT was so gross, and I was suffering, trying to hide the gag reflex. It was a roll with avacado, cream cheese and shrimp. Ewwwww. But at least I tried! 😉 

This week was really great, as always. We are really focusing on Jose and Oscar, because they are both preparing to be baptized. Jose loves the church, loves the teachings, but when we did the pre interview, it was hard for him to remember…. haha. Its hard for the old folks! But he and Oscar are doing really well. In fact, Oscar had a SWEET dream. He always told us, “I just want to listen”… over and over again. But when Aracelly got baptized and Hna Archila left, he told us that he wanted to get baptized. And we set the date for the 15th, but he was thinking maybe more in the future. But like I said, he had a dream.. (chileans are BIG on dreams, no joke). He saw a big door with a lock on it, and on the door, a giant number 15. He took that for his answer that he should get baptized the 15th. 🙂 YEAAAH.
This week we also saw various people that really want to make big changes in their lives. Carmen for example, we have taught a lot of the basics, and we felt we needed to teach the word of wisdom. The house always smells of smoke, and everyone drinks tea… but when we got to the appointment and started to teach, she was SO happy because she WANTS to quit smoking, and is so happy that we are going to help her!
And you guys know that generally I’m a pretty optimistic, positive person. But I want to share something that I learned this week, from a pretty lame experience. We had organized a lesson with a member in the MORNING, which is pretty difficult for us to do. We got to the house of the investigator and she couldn’t recieve us because she’s going to start working. Plus, she told us that even though she didn’t come to our church (thats been the ONLY difficult thing for her), she did return to “her” church. And she’s going to call us when we can visit. I was SO disappointed, because we’ve seen SO much progress in her, it kind of broke my heart. So afterwards I had to really try to not show my disappointment and thought that talking with some people in the street would help me. And we talked with one lady and afterwards my comp asked why we didn’t ask for her address. I felt like I was doing all the work in starting to talk with people, plus with the bad experience in the morning, I was a little stressed. So I might have exploded a bit and said, “Just do it then, if you feel like we should!”. Sassy, right? I felt SO bad afterwards, and had to really humble myself to ask forgiveness later. But where I’m going with this is that this transfer so far I’ve really had to try and remember to be patient with EVERYONE, my comp, the investigators, other missionaries, and myself. And I was also reminded that I’m not a perfect person and I don’t always react how I should. But it was good to have those experiences to help me out.
And that family, is what I have to share this week. Right now I’m in Santiago, just so you know, my comp has a doctors appointment for her diabetes. And next week is our special mission conference, so we are going to have p-day on TUESDAY, not Monday, so don’t freak out when I don’t write Monday. 🙂
Love you all millions. 🙂 🙂  Have a great week, stay safe, and choose the right!
Hermana Clawson
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Ps- 2 member friends from Linderos and Rancagua came to visit me so we took lots of pics. 🙂
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It’s getting hot in here…

Transfers went just fine this week! It always makes me laugh, we FILL the bus terminal in Rancagua, all the missionaries and our luggage. I met up with my CHILEAN companion Hna Colil (from Santiago), but everyone thinks shes a gringa. An elder that just left our area said, “Shes chilean? She looks like shes from AMERICA.”

We’ve been working well together, and its been a crazy experience for her trying to get to know all the investigators. In fact, EVERYONE was expecting Hna Archila to stay and finish her mission in Rengo, so its been a hard change for a lot of people. But she’s handling it well, even though at least 2 people have cried. Ha ha ha.
And like I said, its getting HOT. This week should be a bit better, but phew…. it scares me a bit. It was SO funny, we have a new missionary in our house, fresh from the MTC. Shes from Argentina. She asked a member the other day in lunch, “when is this heat going to end?” and we all just looked at eachother, trying not to laught… “The heat is just STARTING… we havent even gotten to summer yet!” Pobrecita. 🙂
Wed we had a way interesting district meeting. The assistants came and as part of our class (we learned about contacts), we hit the STREETS to contact people. Got a reference for the other sector, it was sweeeeeeeet.  It was also a great day because Jose CUT HIS HAIR, and Alejandra told us that she’s stopped drinking tea because she has to get used to it (we haven’t taught word of wisdom yet…) I’m telling you, feeling the spirit CHANGES people.
Another family that we are starting to teach are Vicki, Linda, and Nicolas. They are super special to me. They are catholic, but were really interested in the piano and english classes. They’ve come 2 times now! And we’ve taught the restoration and Book of Mormon and they pay such attention, the little kid (9) LOVES to read and learn. The 3 are siblings, and they have to take care of each other, cause their mom has breast cancer for the 3rd time. So if you could, please include them in your prayers, she might have surgery this week, so we are trying to help all we can. 🙂
Other great moments of the week: Jose prayed with us for the first time and NAILED it, Grimanesa introduced us to her less active mom and a friend, the Rios family wanted to return to the church (they are from San Javier, so we LOVE talking about that branch, plus I can buy beauty products from them), and Enrique told us that he finally wants to get married and baptized (he’s been investigating and coming to church for about 3 years now…)
And finally, something this week really helped remind me of how blessed I am to have you all as my family and the gospel in my life. Yesterday was Edith’s 13th birthday, and her mom invited us over to celebrate a bit in the evening. When we got to her house, her mom was drunk, her dad had been drinking too, her aunt too, and other random adults were there smoking, etc. Obviously we didn’t feel too great about the situation, but all the other adults left, so us 2 celebrated with Edith, while her mom Gladys was there, but not really. And her mom went to bed early (passed out? I really don’t know), so us 2 missionaries helped Edith clean up the house and put everything back together. Honestly, it was so sad to be reminded of the situation that some people live but I also saw the faith that this 13 year old convert has… its amazing. Even though this is her life, she’s ALWAYS smiling and laughing, gives the BEST hugs, and the church and the gospel is going to help her live different that what she has in the past.
So don’t forget to count your many blessings. And you guys are my #1s!!! Love you all, have a fantastic week!!!

Fun Week in Paine

Wow, I can’t believe how fast this week went. Hna Silva and I are keeping busy, I tell you what. We have improved a ton number wise, in a lot of different areas, which is pretty much thanks to her, she ROCKS, especially with the members. We had 8 lessons with members present this week! Last week we had 3 and normally we are lucky to have like 4 or 5. So yeah, it was cool. Also, we had 5 investigators come to church! In fact, attendance at church this week was the highest I’ve seen in my time here in Paine. YAY!!

As for the week – Mon we played “baby” / “pelota” / futbol and I scored… twice. One was on accident, one was legit. Like, for reals. Something about Chile makes me skilled. Ha ha. Later when we went out to work for the evening, we had a way cool experience with Carmen and Angelina. We have invited them to pray about the decision to be baptized, and they both said they received their answers. BOTH SAID YES. And when we told Carmen that her son Marcos could baptize her, she started to cry. Then Angelina…then Hna Silva and I. Ha ha ha. It is something so special for their family. And its a miracle because they were so closed at first – “Somos catolicas” (cant tell you how many times I hear that EVERY DAY) but now Carmen says “No tengo dudas”. The spirit really does change people!
We also found some really great new investigators. Katerine for example, said she has been searching for the right path, met with missionaries when she was chica and wanted to be baptized, doesn’t believe in worshiping saints / images, and knows that smoking and drinking are bad for her body. There are always challenges, but right now she sounds like the perfect investigator, right? We’ll see!
Thurs we were really excited because a family of less actives that we have worked with a TON (and I LOVE to death) – the mom and daughter came to the soc soc (Relief Society) activity with us! I totes learned how to crochet guys, like with pop tabs too. Hard to explain, but its legit. Im telling you, Chileans are skilled with the artsy crafty stuff. Loooooove it.
Friday was Hna Ruizs birthday. Earlier in the week she sent me a package through our zone leaders that had peanut butter and m&ms. Isn’t she so cool? Yeah. I know. She says Hi and thanks for the regalo! What was it by the way?
Saturday was Happy 9 months to Hermana Silva!
And Sunday was Tanner’s birthday! Wooo! Party til your purple!!
And today is monday. And we went to Buin Zoo. It was really fun! I took lots of nice pics for yall.
Thats all I have for now. Hope you have a great coming week! LOVE YOU ALL!!!!
Housemates…I love them all. We are having WAY too much fun together…