Monday, March 8, 2010

Lo Ovalle 1 - Week #12

¡Hola Familia!

This week has been a very long/interesting week, to say the least. I feel moved to tell you all that we've been moving a lot lately... LOL. The temblores have slowed down a little bit but that are still fairly strong when they come.

Last night we had cambios, and as I'm sure you've already noticed I'm still in Lo Ovalle 1 and loving it. Both myself and Elder Davenport are still here and there are only 4 new missionaries in our zone (2 of which just entered the mission). Provo is sending 3 more missionaries to us and they should arrive in the morning. All of the missionaries in Chile are safe and sound after this huge disaster that we had, a few have more problems than others but all are safe. De hecho the only missionary that had a wound because of this earthquake was in Renca (a community in our mission that had relatively no problems).

The whole mission has been under toque de queda (curfew) at 8:00 every night this week with a few of the potential problems, and we have really been hurting to teach as most of our lessons occur at night when the whole family is home. We are hoping that the curfew gets lifted today, but so far we don't have any news as to that matter.

Our house is completely OK, we had one thing that fell and broke (the lid to the tank on the toilet) and nothing else. Our sector in general didn't have a lot of damage so the service opportunities were (and still are) limited, más que nada the concrete fences that almost everyone had didn't fair to well.

About the quake: I survived 3 minutes 8 seconds of an 8.3 earthquake that didn't let up at any point during that time! When Elder Boyce and I woke up (we were in divisions) because of the sound of the window next to my bed rattling very loudly the quake was becoming really strong and we didn't have time to go downstairs. So we rode it out in the door frames, holding on for our lives and still getting thrown in every direction. Needless to say I was "MOVED" by the experience!!! But I'm alive and well and tired of being couped up in the house for 3 and 1/2 hours every night... Let's just say that this is not an experience that I would care to repeat!!!

I remembered Thursday or Friday that amidst all of the excitement of last week I forgot to wish Dad a happy birthday... so... ¡FELIZ CUMPLEAÑOS PAPÁ! I said it Saturday morning but I figured y'all probably didn't hear me. I'm glad your b-day turned out good! Wish I could have been there.

Good to hear that despite the fact that the whole world here has changed, including that the weather is back up close to 34 degree Celsius (way abnormal for this part of the year... especially when it was already cooling down before the terremoto), that Texas is still the same. The family motto "There is always another project!" seems to be holding strong... LOL.

The work here is slow right now, but we had the opportunity to have a stake conference broad casted from Salt Lake yesterday for Santiago hasta Arica. It was amazing, we heard from Elder Bradley D. Foster (of the Seventy), Sister Cheryl Lant (General Primary President), Elder David A. Bednar (Quorum of the Twelve), and President Thomas S. Monson. We were richly fed and it was great to hear their counsel during this time of crisis acá in Chile. The themes of their talks focused a lot on bettering ourselves to be able to conquer our own problems and lift others. They truly were inspired as to what the Chilean people need right now!

In this short time I've grown to love so much the people here! At times it is hard to adapt, todavia, but the people here (in general) are great. There are many that need the Gospel in their lives and I know that this tragedy will open many doors for them to accept the Gospel and have the ganas (urge) to do so.

I love this work and the opportunity that I have to provide the opportunity for others to accept our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ and all of the blessings that he has waiting for them. I know this is His Church and that I am one of his chosen servants to do what he would do if he were here.

I love you all and miss you!!!
¡Todo mi amor y cariño!
-- Élder Todd

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