Monday, July 29, 2013

Happy Peruvian Independence Day!

Not really a day often celebrated in a mission in Chile, but since we live with a peruvian, we thought we'd do something. So in the chapel today we got together with all the missionaries from Temuco Cautín and ate a tradicional peruvian plate, Ají de Gallina. 'Twas delicious. Afterwards we watched Racket Ralph, some new disney movie that came out I don't know when. A good time was had by all.

Before I forget to mention: I have some important bits of info I want to share.

First, the mission office has changed, as you know. So do not send anything to the address in O'Higgins. The new address is:

Misión Chile Concepción Sur
Castellón 1063
Casilla 3560
Concepción, Chile

Second, I was thinking a little about the proposed flight schedule, and how with the trip to Santiago, we won't have a lot of time to tour the mission. So (hoping you haven't already bought the tickets, if so that's okay), I have an idea:

I'm really not all that interested in touring about Santiago, since it has no intrinsic value for me. More that anything it's the temple that calls my attention. So what if, instead of going to Santiago on the 12th, after a day of mission touring, we went on the 11th, the day after you pick me up? I assume that the only reason Santiago has two days on the schedule is so we can go to church, but if we spend just one day in Santiago to go to the temple and then come back to Conce the same day (this is on the 11th), then we could have the 12th and the 13th to tour the mission and go to church. It's not a big change, but it would bye us another day to see my old sectors, and the chance to go to church in one of them.
Again, don't know if it's posible, but I wanted to throw it out there. So to summarize, 10th pick me up and stay the night in Conce. 11th fly to Santiago, go to temple, fly back to Conce, stay the night in Conce. 12th tour the mission and perhaps I can even arrange a stay in a member family's house if we happen to be in the South. 13th go to church and tour a little bit more, stay the night in Conce. 14th fly to Lima. The end. Let me know what you think!

It was a pretty interesting week this week with a lot of trials. All six of the sisters from our zone got really sick with bronchitis, we were back and forth between our sector and their's, dropping off medicine and other things, so we lost some time from the work in our sector. But if felt good to help out, so no complaints. Thankfully the zone is in better physical health this week. We found a lot of new investigators with Elder Hanes, and now we're teaching a really cool couple too named Jaime and Jimena. They're really looking for the truth, and they did a great study of the Restoration pamphlet we left them. They seemed really interested in the last lesson about Christ's visit to the Americas. So hopefully we can progress with them and help them come to church so they can learn more.

Rocío and her son Joaquín continue to progress and came to church yesterday, although they have not accepted a new baptismal date yet. Rocío still feels like she needs to know more, even though she's read the entire Book of Mormon. So we tease her and tell her she's crazy, but we're understanding. I have faith that she'll be baptised in August.

That's about it really. I wish I could share a few other stories, but since we were in the Chapel for so long today, we don't have much time. So I'll leave you here.

Much love from Chile!

Elder Wilcox

Monday, July 22, 2013

Many Questions, Many Answers

Mi querida familia y estimados amigos,

Thank you for your correspondance. I enjoy greatly hearing about your daily lives, and calculating a little bit of what I hope my life will be like after the mission. So you serve as examples to me of how to live. Thank you for your diligence and faith.

And thank you, Mom, for having been a travel agent in another life! Or perhaps for having watched Inception too much. A flight within a flight within a flight... I am impressed. And who knows? Maybe we'll find someone who wants to go to Peru in November and not come back. There's got to be somebody... Haha but in all seriousness, thank you for doing all that. The plans look great. It'll be a little tricky visiting old sectors, but I'll try to organize it as efficiently as posible.

Haha Dad, the other day I was actually thinking...I'm in a new sector. I need to give Dad the scoop again. So here it goes:

I'm in the city of Padre Las Casas, on the southside of Temuco. The ward is called Maquehue because it's on Maquehue street with Mac-Iver. Right on the corner. We live in Los Quilantos 1475. If you look for Los Quilantos with Corvalán, you'll find some apartments on the south side of Corvalán we live in the southeast one. Block F. We're on the first floor. There are two stakes in Temuco, Temuco Cautín (ours) and Temuco Ñielol. The stake of Cautín is actually divided into two missionary zones, so unfortunately we don't have Carahue as part of our zone, like it was a year ago. We have Maquehue ward (4 Elders and 4 sisters). It's a big ward where between 140-160 attend. We also have Llaima ward (named for the volcano close by. 4 sisters), the Cautín ward (2 Elders and 2 sisters), and the Cunco branch (2 elders).

What else... our sector (since Padre Las Casas is divided between the elders and sisters), is everything from the Santa Isabel (a grocery store) downwards. That is, Aillacara street downwards.

Umm...I think that's about it. My companion, Elder Hanes is from Idaho. He graduated from High school and left on the mission. He's 20. He's 6 feet 8 inches tall so he towers over everything and everyone. He's a nice guy that reminds me a lot of Sterling actually, in his sense of humor. He's got a little more than a month less that I do in the mission, so he'll be finishing in October as well. We live with two other elders, Elder Valle from Peru, and Elder Valenzuela from Chile.

The camoflauge suits were from my last P-Day in San Pedro. We went to Lota to play paintball with the zone, and it was a blast. I sent a bunch of pictures to Mom, I don't know if she got them..?

That's all!

We're still working hard trying to find a lot of new investigators, and we've had some success. Still working with Rocío and her son, Joaquín too. I think I mentioned them last week... Well Rocío finished the Book of Mormon is pretty much everything you could ever want in an investigator. The only problem is her mom doesn't let her go to church every Sunday for a few reasons. But she'll definitely be getting baptized in August and we have faith that we'll be able to help her mom too.

And that's it for this week, as we are short on time! I love you all, family dear, we'll see you before the new year!

Much love,
Elder Wilcox

Monday, July 15, 2013


I'm not in San Pedro anymore!

They called me on Monday and told me I'd be going to Temuco Cautín, the zone where I first began my mission, only in another sector.

So...Here I am, in Maquehue with Elder Hanes. The transfer came earlier than expected because Elder Badger (old comp) used to be here but had to go home early for studies.

I'm a little bummed not being in Boca Sur anymore, because it was a fantastic sector, and things were going great, and I kind thought I would finish there. But the Lord has other plans for me. So I'll be finishing down here in Temuco.

Even so, there are great blessings here too. We have an investigator named Rocío and her son, Joaquín. They found Rocío about 2 weeks back, and she's already on page 500 something in the Book of Mormon (in Spanish it's more than 600 pages). She's got a baptism date along with her son for the 27th of this month. Awesome!

The travel plans look great. I talked to the secretary, and she confirmed that yes, coming in on Wednesday and staying the night is the best option. She unfortunately doesn't have any specific details on what's gonna happen on Thursday, since I'm the only one going. Thanks for working in the Temple trip in Santiago, that'll be a really special experience. Also, I think we'll be able to fit in a solid tour of the mission in two days. It's really not that big of a mission anyhow, and all my sectors are fairly centralized and easily-accesible.

I got a new winter toggle coat today! Thank you for sending money! It's a nice coat originally 210 dollars but I got it on sale for 68. Now I look more professional. Yay!

Also, I had a question about my drivers license for when I get home. Since I got robbed almost two years ago, I don't have one. Is there a way of asking for a new one so I can have mine right when I get back?

Well, short on time this week as usual. Thank you for all the letters and fun photos. Time is quickly drawing to a close in my mission, but there is still much to do. So, the shoulder goes to the wheel! Have a great week being latter-day saints!

Elder Wilcox

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Race Continues

Buenas tards, querida familia.

Man...that's pretty lousy to hear about the rainy 4th of July. Perhaps it will make you feel better to know that down here in Chile we celebrated in our own way with Choripanes (Chilean Sausage with bread) and a delicious key-lime pie-like dessert that Elder Contreras made. It was a simple but enjoyable celebration.

The works going great in Boca 2nd ward. I love working in this new plan that is Operation Alma. It gives us the chance as four missionaries to work for the same purpose in the same ward. Not as two completely separate and distinct sectors. There's no pride, no jealousy, we work together and rejoice in each other's success. Through many exchanges that we do every week, we all 4 end up getting to know all the investigators and less active members that we're working with. This is a unique oportunity, because it gives every one of the 4 missionaries to help in the teaching of these people and receive revelation to know how to help them. So it makes the work more secure, and the people benefit from being taught by four different missionaries.

This sunday we had 9 investigadores in church, including two families, plus 11 less active members, also including 2 families. It was a great success that we owe completely to Heavenly Father. Right now we have 6 people that are preparing for baptism, 5 for this month. Please keep in your prayers Victor and Cynthia, Debora and Tomas, and especially Irma, who's closest to baptism, her date being for the 20th.

Unfortunately, I don't know much about what the schedule will be like on my bye bye date. Typically on normal release dates, the day before is spent in the office, where the missionary fills out a bunch of stuff and has his interview with President, etc. There's usually a lunch with President in his house, a small devotional, dinner with president, and off to the holiday by the airport for the night. The next morning, early, on the actually release date, the missionary boards the plane.

However....I'm the only one, so I have no idea how it will be. I will try to acquire some more information and send an email off tomorrow or wednesday to let you know.

I noticed there's a layover in Santiago. I don't know if this would be possible at all, but typically all missionaries that go home are given the opportunity to go through the Santiago temple before heading on the final flight home...If it's possible, I would love to be able to enter the temple of my mission country before going home. If not possible, I understand, but that's just something that came to my mind.

Thank you for all your preparation and help in this process. I know it's quite complicated right now, but it will all come our right. I'm grateful, family, for your endless love and support and wish you the best of weeks.

I leave you with this scripture that impacted me this week.
Acts 27:23  "For there stood by me this night the angel of God, whose I am, and whom I serve,"

In the darkest and longest nights of our lives, we are never alone. There will always be another sunrise, and until then, God will send his angels to lift us up and sustain us.

Much love,
Elder Wilcox

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

A Missionary Attitude

Is what our family has, and I love it. So, I'll start with first things first...

ASHLEY, ¡vai para o Brasil! Estou tão animado para você! Nunca me imaginé que irías tan lejos de la casa, mucho menos al querido Brasil! Genial! Not that your mission language is Spanish, but whatever, it's similar. Seriously, though, Ashley that is SO AWESOME. I'm very happy for you and and thrilled that we'll be able to see each other before you go. You're going to be a great misionary.

This week was good. The work is moving forward in the ward and everybody's getting more and more excited about participating in the work of salvation.

Constanza, the daughter of a less active family we were working with, was baptised this last saturday. It was a great service, and a lot of nonmembers came which was cool. The stake president was there too, and his son performed the ordenance, since their related to Constanza and her mom somehow.

Brother Frederick (an ex bishopric councelor and less active for 10 years) came to church for the third time this week with his wife, and even cut his hair (it was very long and unkempt before). We're really grateful for him and his decision to come back. Now we're working on his children to help them follow. They're a great family with sincere testimonies, and we're really thrilled with their progress.

That's about it for right now. We had Zone Leader council yesterday and a mission conference today, so there's not much time to write. I'm glad the family's doing good and once again, SO EXCITED for you Ashley and for what lies ahead of you.

I love you, family. You're the best family ever, and my photo of you continues to help a lot of other families have the vision of what they can achieve through the Gospel. You rock!

Much love,
Elder Wilcox

P.S. Luckily it hasn't been too terribly cold here, but being Concepción, it has been quite rainy. In any case, with some lock down on dress code, my cool jacket I bought last year is officially outlawed, meaning I need to buy a more formal coat very soon. I don't intend to spend much money, as I won't be using it for very much longer, but I want to be obedient. So just a head's up. Next monday, or the one after, I'll probably be buying a coat around 40-60 dollars if I can. Good thing is clothes are cheap in Chile.

Also, what are the details on my return? Are you still going to be able to pick me up? What's the itinerary look like? I need to know very soon to be able to advise the mission of my travel plans.

Thanks! Have a great week!