September 21, 2013

Hola Familia y amigos,

Here we are again writing this saturday afternoon. We just got back from a baptism that some missionaries had and we decided to go. The bad part is that we missed the baptism because we had to run home to change into our mission clothes. We got there for the last hymn and prayer. Well, once again it is awesome to hear from all of you, though many trunky comments were said. I will act as if I did not hear them, haha. Don´t worry mother, the carpenter story at the end made up for all the trunkiness! It's always good to hear about what is going own over there in O town. I can´t believe the BYU Utah game is today. I can always hear all the noise and shouts from down here! I hope that everything went well in Caiden's soccer game. I am sure that you are there right now cheering him on.

OK, now for a little bit about this last week... It was probably the most un-busy that I have ever had. Why??? Because it was the 18th of September, which means a lot of parties and drunk people to celebrate the independence of Chile. It's not like the 4th of July in the states when it is just one day, this has been going on since Wednesday and hasn´t let up till today, haha. These Chileans sure like to party. Well, for all the partying and stuff it made it really difficult for us as missionaries to work. So we really could only work with set appointments and service stuff. So we cleaned churches and houses and ate a lot this last week. It was a little slow though. More so for us because we couldn´t go anywhere and we don´t have as many people that we know in our sector so we didn´t have very many set appointments.

This week we did have interviews with President. We had ours on Wednesday and they were great. The first thing that Pres. asked me when I went into his office was... Are you trunky? I said no but the Elders of the office are really trying! He just laughed and said good don´t let them get to you. We had a great interview and of course I learned a lot. I asked Pres. how we can always be doers of the word and not just sayers. He gave me some cool answers that would be really difficult to write here so I will tell you all some other time. I sure do love to be here and to learn from so many different people. It continues to change my life more and more and I sure hope that I can continue to change because I still got a lot of rough rough edges.

Ok, so I haven´t really told you all a lot about Elder Virhuez. He is from Argentina and he is great. He has about 2 transfers more in his mission. His family are all members besides his Dad. He is a great Elder and we get along just fine. We do fight a lot, as in pushing each other and stuff like that, just joking around with each other. It's like me and Caiden because he always ends up saying that his shoulder hurts or something like that haha. We have a good time together though.

Alright, I don´t want to bore you all but I have to share with you all something that I found in Preach my Gospel. Well, I have always tried to put in words the things that I have felt and feel while here in the mission and it is always impossible that it comes out right, because everyone has already said all those things a thousand times, but I have now found what explains my feelings the best in doctrine form and I love it. In PMG, page 4, it talks about the power and authority of a missionary. At the bottom it gives 7 examples of how we should feel and see this power while serving a mission and it explains what I have felt in the mission:

1. Being led by the spirit to say things right when they need to be said. I know that this has happened because some how I have been able to teach the Gospel in a language that before I could not speak and some how people have learned the truth I know that was not by me but by the spirit. What a great privilege to even be a part of such a thing.
2. Receiving guidance on where to go. Though very weak, some how the Lord has guided so many missionaries to find people who are ready for the Gospel. I feel that on a few occasions the Lord has guided me though I was not trying nor noticed that he was doing so. He is kind enough to involve me in such a great work even when I may not be worthy of so many blessings.
3. Having testimony confirmed by the spirit. My testimony has been confirmed through much study and prayer and experiences that this is God's church and he has been merciful enough to confirm the truth of my small testimony to others.
4. I have been able to take part in ordinances of salvation. There is nothing that brings more joy.
5. Being able to give priesthood blessings. I have been able to feel that the Lord's power has truly been restored to this earth while being able to use it to bless others.
6. Praying with and for the people you work with. I am not sure how many prayers I have said so far in my mission, but it has been a lot. I know God listens to our prayers. I have had great experiences kneeling in prayer in the house of someone I recently met and be able to feel the spirit testify of the truthfulness of this Gospel.
7. Be able to express your love for the Lord, your family, fellow missionaries and the people that you serve. This may be my favorite one. There are no other things that I love more than these. I feel so much love for all of them. It makes me so happy to feel this love. I am so thankful that the Lord up to this point has let me have such great experiences.

I love this Gospel with all my heart. I love the mission. I love you all so much. Thanks for all your prayers and support.
Elder Brown

1.Putting a grill in the car
2.Trying to fix something on the car
3.Mission home
5.Eating lunch with the Goodmans
6.Partying for the 18th
7.Chilean at heart

September 14, 2013

Hola Familia y Amigos, (I am sure you are sick of this beggining but I can´t change it now haha its been almost 2 years with the same one)

Obviously, you already all know that I feel like the time is going by faster and faster as the day gets closer and closer because probably about a million times I have said it in my emails since I started the mission. It just seems to blow me away a little more every single day. I am always so glad to hear from you all and I wanted to start my email with a couple shout outs. First, Happy B day Gramps!!!!!!! I sure do love you Grandpa and Grandma. I really have a hard time expressing myself a lot of times, but the thankfulness that I feel for you is so great, and for so many reasons. First, for the way that you, Grandpa, have lived your life. I don´t know of many others who have been such a great example to so many. Second, for all the support that you have given me since I have been out on the mission and not to mention the support you have given to so many other missionaries in our family. Third, for creating such an amazing family that reaches further than many families that I know. All that I have recently said applies to both Grandpa and Grandma Brown, I just used Grandpa more because it was his birthday. I love you both so much and I hope that you had a great B day gramps. I am glad I will be there for the next one!!!!

Second shout out is to Aunt Vicky. I got a B day card from her and I wanted to give her thanks. She has always remembered me in every special date even after being gone so long and you would think that many would forget about me, Aunt Vicky sure hasn´t. I love you Aunty haha.

Ok, now just to let you know mother, mail is now working but that package does not show... I am sorrry I will hopefully get it soon. About college, first off it makes me sick to think about a couple things. First, college in generel, haha, second how bad my grades are. WOW, I can´t believe it. I have long since repented of that, just to let you know, but it looks like I still have the price to pay for it. I am going to be working my bum off it looks like. If you are sure that it is not even worth trying to get into BYU for now I guess that I can try UVU first, but if there is a chance that I could get in I would love it. One other thing I want to ask you to look up is about night school at BYU. I heard that is a good option to get grades up. As well as a Spanish test that one can take to get a bunch of credits if you pass it. Thanks for all that you are looking up for me Mother, so that I can stay focused here. About the money, it looks like I am going to be working like a crazy man to pay for school.

Ok, this week was reallly good. We had mission leader council this week in the mission home on Thursday, but that means that pretty much all this week before that we were preparing things for that, namely numbers - lots and lots of numbers haha. Everything turned out good on the report that we made for the meeting, there were no big time problems. I got to drive President's Explorer this week and I thought that I was in a resurrected version of Dora, haha, it was pretty funny. We had divisions yesterday with the Zone leaders in La Union and that was a lot of fun. I went with Elder Amone who is a big poly guy that is going to play middle linebacker for BYU after the mission and it was super awesome. There are so many great examples to learn from hear in the mission. I sure love it.

Alright, to finish things off I just want to share something that I have learned and am still learning about here in the mission. It is something that Pres. Rappleye has taught me. He always talks about the Host and the Guest. The difference of the Host from the guest is that the Host is always productive he is always doing something and its almost always something for someone else. He is running around doing good and making things happen. A guest sits around and waits for things to be given to him. He does not do almost anything of his own will and does little good and the good that he does is usually for himself. Pres. is always trying to help us to become Hosts. I hope that I have become more of a Host in my mission because we all know that before the mission that was not the case, haha. I know that if at some moments in my mission I have been a host the good that I have done might not amount to so much. As Elder Ballard explained in one of his talks about honey bees that all they do is to only give out a 12th of a teaspoon. I hope that up to now that I have done my 12th of a teaspoon, I feel that I have tried and that there is still more that I can give to make it up to that 12th. If all that I have done even amounts up to a 12th of a teaspoon to the Lord I am so grateful what all of that has done for me. I will tell you right now it has done a lot more for me than a 12th of a teaspoon. It has blessed me so so so much. I have learned that that is how it is with the Lord. That there is no way to ever break even with him. We give a very very very little and he gives us so much more. I feel that in the last year and.... almost 2 years that I may have done what amounts to very little to the Lord, he has given me so much. I feel so overly grateful. I love you all so very much.
Elder Brown

Sorry no pics this time the camara is in the car.  

September 7, 2013

Oh my goodness family, I can not explain to you how tired I feel this week, haha! It has been one crazy week. I am sure I will hear from you all later today but we got on to write right now, so sorry if you have any questions I will have to answer them next week.

So, to tell you all a little bit about what has happened in this last week...... I am not sure where to start, so much has happened and I feel like I have been around the world and back, even though I haven´t even gone that far. This last week though, we went over 1000 kilometers doing intercambios and trainers trainings. It has been one full week and I am feeling it now. I will start with the beginning. We had planned on heading to Chiloe on Monday, but we ended up leaving Osorno really late so we just got to Puerto Montt and stayed the night there. Tuesday, bright and early, we headed for Chiloe and we were confronted with a few problems, such as strikes in the middle of the highway, so that we couldn´t pass and we ended up missing the trainers training in Chiloe, but we got there later that day to be able to do intercambios with the Zone leaders. Wednesday we went to a district meeting in Chiloe and then headed to Puerto Montt where we did intercambios with another set of zone leaders. Thursday we did another trainers training and then had intercambios with the other zone leaders of Puerto Montt. Wow, I was tired byThursday but it wasn´t over yet, haha, yesterday we had a trainers training in Frutillar and then intercambios with the Zone leaders in Puerto Varas. To say the least, I am finishing this week wet and tired because this week I think that it did not stop raining until today, so we were pretty wet all week, but the drops of water did not stop us from having some awesome divisions and I sure did learn from every single one of them. Life is good, the mission is the greatest and a little bit of water will not stop us from working in the work of the Lord and it will defininately not stop God from bringing forth his work.

We got back this morning just in time to eat a great pancake breakfast with the Goodmans and the office elders; it was a great time. I have not had such a great breakfast since before the mission. It was sure a good one.

Haha, thanks Mom, Dad and Britt for taking the time to write me. Everything is going great with my Comp. We are just as busy as ever. I am so glad to always hear from you all, and I was able to see the video of the boys and Caiden. All the guys in the office thought that it was pretty funny. It was pretty funny and they really are so cute. I love those little guys.

Haha, I promise to you all that I have never felt so tired in my whole life. But at the same time I have never felt better in my whole life. This work has changed my life so much and one of the greatest opportunities that I have had lately has been to be able to visit with all the new elders in the mission and share with them the love that I have for the mission. Lots of times it is so hard for me to express myself to them and help them to understand the magnitude of what they are starting now. It will change the lives of so many. They seem to have heard it a million times, but I feel that they do not comprehend it. I feel that I am just about beginning to understand a little of the magnitude that it has had in my life and in the lives of others. I am sure that there is much about it that I still don´t understand, but I so badly want these new Elders to understand at least what I have come to understand in this short time. There is no better choice that they have ever made than to come out here and serve the Lord. I just love it so much. I want to thank all those that helped me to make such a choice, and who have done so much to support me as I have been doing it. I love you all so much and thank you all for all you do for me.

Elder Brown

1. Camino a Chiloe
2. Puerto Varas
3. Puerto Varas
4. Pancake breakfast in the Goodmans

August 31, 2013

Wow, another week has blown past me and I am not sure where it went, but with it took 15 elders home and brought 20 new ones. It was a crazy last week. I will inform you all more about that later. Once again it's a gusto to hear from you all again. I sure do love you all. I know I say the same every single letter but there is no other way for me to describe it. I just love every single one of you.

My new comp. is Elder Virhuez, haha, I have known for so long that it just seemed to me that you all knew. I have known for like 3 weeks that he was going to be my comp. He is an awesome guy. He is from Argentina. I like him a lot and we are going to work hard. Well, I will start with the beginning of the crazy week. Monday was normal and we prepared everything for the new guys to get here. The new elders got here on Tuesday. It was a super crazy day where we were running around all day until about 10 at night. I woke up super early that day too, and I drove down to Puerto Montt with 2 of the office elders and left them there in the airport, and took the new Latinos back up to Osorno. Then a second group headed down to Puerto Montt in the afternoon to pick up the gringos that came from the Mexico MTC. It was the first group from there. We were giving a welcome presentation to them in groups, first the Latinos in Spanish, then the gringos in English and I cannot tell you how bad I was at English! I am sure you can kind of tell by my spelling and vocab. Ha, the new Elders thought it was pretty funny that I mixed so much of my Spanish and English. This new group was so awesome, they were full of energy and ready to go to work. One of the best groups I have seen come to the mission. They are so young though. I was so suprised, an Elder got here from Timpanogos, but I didn´t know him because I had graduated before he was even in high school, but he does know Caiden. His name is Elder Burop. Wednesday we had a meeting to train the new trainers that are going to be training the new group that got here and they were all great. All of them are just such great missionaries. I feel so blessed to get to know so many of them and to learn from each one of them. Then the hardest part of all came - 15 elders were preparing to go home. The last devotional and super are always the worst for me. It makes me so sad to see such great missionaries go home. I love every single one of them so much. We said goodbye to my companions, Elder Balbuena and Stanley, which was so hard to do. As well as my good friend Elder Crosby, who I lived with for 4 months. I was so happy to see pics of him as he got home, baptizing his mother!!! It was so cool to hear that and see the pics. Then the rest of the week has been pretty normal, We have been getting to know the sector more and we had an acitivity yesterday as a ward and us missionaries sang a few songs for the festival of songs that we did. It was pretty fun. Now here I am writing my wonderful fam.

Dad, that was such a good story to hear and I think that it explains much better the principle that I was trying to share. Now days I find it hard to express myself in the way that I want for two main reasons. First because my english is so bad and second is that with lots of time in the mission elders start to be big babies and I think I am at the point that I am just a big baby. Oh, I forgot to tell you what we did for my B day. Hna Rappleye made a cake and we shared it on my B day as well as all the office elders and I ate pizza for lunch. It was a good bday in the mission, simple, and that's all one needs. I am sorry to tell you mother, that the package has not come yet, but I think it will get here. I was also glad to hear from a few friends for my birthday in some emails today - thanks great friends I love you all.

Alright fam well, I love you all so much. I thank you all for what you do. I just want to share one thing with you all before I head off. I never liked it when Elders got home and talked about how they learned how to be salesmen thanks to the mission. I always said that they were completely different things. Then Pres. Rappleye, who has been a salesmen his whole life, shared something with me that changed a little my perspective. He taught Elder Balbuena and me that sales like everyone knows it now, is not really sales. Now days people just try to put their product on you, and force you to buy it no matter what you need, want, or can afford. He said sales is first listening to the costumer, getting to know them, finding what they search for, need and want, then with all this information collected you help them out. You give them what they need. You show them how that specific product can help them, so that when they leave that store they know that you are their friend, that you helped them get what was best for their needs, and that they will be coming back. This is the same as missionary work. We must first listen to those who are not members, get to know them, their desires, needs, and problems. Then, after knowing all this, show them the one product that will solve all their needs - The Gospel. We help those who do not know the truth to realize why they need the Gospel, how it will solve any problem, need, or desire that they will ever have. There is nothing better to sell than the Gospel, that is when we are talking about real sales, not the kind of sales that I have never liked (selling football cards that have no value and will solve no ones problems). The Gospel is the solution to life. I hope that I can be a salesman of this product the rest of my life. Whether it is as a missionary, brother, son, father, friend, or examples I want to always be selling this product. The Gospel is true. Love you all.

Elder Brown

1. The ending group
2. Hna Goodman giving a cake to blow out the candles
3. B day lunch
4. Osorno Zone almost all of us and Elder Homie (the little guy in my had haha)
5. Me and my new comp.