Thursday, April 11, 2013

The Joys of a Mission

We just had "cambios" this week.  Hermana Davis is on the left, and this is her second day in Chile.  She told me her parents follow our blog.  I can report that she is full of enthusiasm and her Spanish is really good!  She was asked to read in our training session and she did great!  I was super impressed with her.  Her trainer is from Argentina and she is really fun and full of pep.   Right now they are living with a single sister in Lontué because the house we were planning for them, had a few problems; (no electricity and the toilet didn't work;  You are in Chile now, Hermana Davis!)  They are living in a nice, typical, Chilean home in a quiet neighborhood.  We'll take good care of her.

Out for lunch with some awesome Elders.  You have to see the size of these sandwiches!

This is the famous, "completo".  It is just a hot dog with smashed avocado, diced tomatoes, a smothering of mayonnaise and this Elder added mustard and hot sauce.  He ate two of these!  The sandwich in the background is called a Churrasco.  They are piled with meat, avocado, diced tomatoes and tons of mayo.
This is like four sandwiches.  I've seen the Hermanas eat this much food!

Some of my "favorites".  The shorter hermanas are both new.  One is from Mexico and the other is from Peru.  The trainers are from home.  This was a beautiful day in Constitución.

Hermana Fajardo is eating one of my cookies.  She is such a good missionary.  She has just been called to be a "leader of the hermanas."  We are running out of experienced trainers with all the Sisters entering the mission.  Some Hermanas who have only been here for four weeks are already training the new missionaries.  They are usually in training for twelve weeks.  There was an article in the Deseret News about the new leadership roles the sisters will have.

Russ and Silvia came to visit us last month for a few days.  It was wonderful to see them.  They are so fun to travel around with.  We got to visit Pucón with them and our mission president and his wife, (on the left).  Russ and Silvia are good friends with the Humphreys.  You can see the cool belt my brother bought.  He loves to make friends with the people and then makes them happy by buying something.

The Park Lake Hotel
President Humphrey could only spend one night and a day away from his responsibilities.  He was still on the phone most of the time.  What a great tour guide he was, knowing all the places to stop and shop.

Lake Villarrica, from our room.  The weather was warm and spectacular! 

The volcano, Villarrica, just outside Pucón.

The sun was just going down. 

The next morning, we hiked a short while at the bottom of the volcano.  Can you see the steam coming out the top?

We saw a few lizards along the way and Doug said to me, "you'll never catch it".  Ha!

Why did I get in the "talent line" entitled, "lizard catching"?

We got to travel to Santiago with Russ and Silvia and stay with them in their friends house.  This is the back yard.  It was a lovely home, full of antiques and a maid!  You just have to walk into the dining room and the dinner is there!  After you eat, and visit for a long time, you just get up and walk off.  No dishes or clean up, nada.  Gerry is the boy that lived with Russ and Silvia when he was a teenager for a year.  He still lives here with his parents.  He knows what hospitality is.  He was so helpful and polite and gave us a terrific tour of the city.  Here are a few pictures of the tour.
Gerry, his girfriend, and sister.
I love this picture-"solving world hunger."
On top of Santa Lucia, a hill where there was a lookout, watching for the Mapuchi Indians to attack

There is some interesting architecture in Santiago

The Institute of Religion.
This building is actually where Gerry's mother was raised.  There were 10 children and 8 nannies! 

Ensalada Chilena

We ended the tour with lunch, outside, and my favorite salad.
Doug and I drove home that evening.  It was so fun to be with Russ and Silvia.  I cried for the first hour after being separated from them.  That must be why missionaries aren't allowed to see family for 2 years.  It is just too hard to part.

Our mission couldn't be much better.  We are loving every minute of it.  We don't care about U.S. news, sports, TV, none of it.
Try to picture my little afternoon experience, today.  Three Hermanas had to come to Talca for a follow-up Dr. appointment.  Only one companion can go into the exam room with the sick Hermana so I told them that I would meet them at the clinic and stay with the extra missionary.  They are never supposed to be alone.  They called me when they got to the bus terminal so I would know when they would arrive.  I left our apartment and walked to my favorite, angled, tree-lined, street in Talca.  The weather was warm and the city was bustling with people.  I got to the clinic and waited on the sidewalk.  In a few minutes, 3 of the sweetest, cleanest looking, young women came around the corner. It was natural to greet them in Spanish and give them each a hug and kiss.  We went into the clinic and I visited with the "extra" missionary.  She is getting transferred tomorrow.  It was just a few minutes and the others came back out.  We all walked together to the street where all the colectivos drive by.  It was fun to wave one down by holding up 3 fingers.  We all hugged and I waited until they climbed in and were off to the bus terminal.  I walked back home through the middle of our plaza and still thought to myself, "I'm wandering around Chile, and I feel safe and comfortable!"  Life is Good!


  1. Elder & Hermana Pulsipher, thank you SO MUCH for keeping your blog and especially for this special post! It is the sweetest tender mercy and the absolute best birthday present (which just happens to be today) that Hmna Davis' Mom could have ever hoped for.
    Thank you, thank you, thank you!
    ~ Craig & Angela Davis

  2. Uncle Doug I am attaching a letter for my son Adam serving in the Rancagua
    Dear Family,

    This week was a blast! Élder Botero is an awesome guy and a boss as a missionary. We are working hard to help every single one of the missionaries! I have already learned so much from him about listening to the missionaries, encouraging them, filling them with confidence, and letting the lord inspire them! I am excited to continue to learn from him every day.

    This week we had interviews in Santa Cruz and San Fernando! It was exciting to get to know all of the missionaries and to help them. We are doing our best to fill all of them with confidence during our interviews. I know that as we trust in them, they will trust in the Lord. There are so many great missionaries that have had some amazing experiences that led them to the mission field. We have also had the opportunity to help a lot of companionships with their unity! We had one amazing spiritual experience with a hermana who told her companion that she didn´t feel the spirit when she bore her testimony. Élder Botero is so amazing at making people feel comfortable and helping them to open up. In the end, they both felt the spirit very strong and the spirit and they are committed to work hard together. It was an amazing experience!

    It is pretty crazy what has happened with all of the hermanas now in our mission! Last change, we opened 11 new sectors and the next change 11 more and 11 more after that! We are running out of places to put all the missionaries. Hermanas that have been her 6 weeks are training other hermanas. It is wild, but the Lord trusts in them and knows their potential.

    We are working our butts off to get ready for the big change in 2 months. Élder Botero is opening the new mission in San Bernardo with President Cook and I will be leading the mission here in Rancagua with President Warne. We are excited for the huge change! Our mission will include Talca and Curico and we could have up to 300 missionaries. President MacArthur keeps telling me good luck with finding places to put all of the missionaries because he leaves in 2 months.

    I had an amazing conversation with President MacArthur. He is so wise and hilarious! He wrote a book about parenting and we talked a lot about creating moments of excellence. As we think of others and help them to feel they did something amazing, they learn and they are excited to continue to learn and keep learning. I know that is what you did to us as kids. I know that being a disciple of Christ (thinking of others and helping them recognize these moments of excellence) is what helps others to progress in this world.

    Élder Pulsipher