Monday, December 31, 2012

Hey everyone

So, first Christmas away from home. It was kinda weird waking up on Christmas morning and knowing that everyone was at home opening presents and stuff. It's okay, though, Elder H. and I had our own little Christmas morning and opened our packages together. Oh yeah and I have to thank a few people: Thanks to Aunt Laura, Phillip, and Claire; Grandma sue and Grandpa Jerry; Aunt Lynn; the Clynes; and Shannon's sunday school class (I think) for the packages. It was greatly appreciated and still felt like Christmas even though I'm far from home.
Things have been going well here in Buenaventura. All the Elders are working hard. Elder A. and I are really working with this family. We don't know their last name yet, but we call them familia de Magnolia, because that's the mom's name. We met them on the street about a month ago and we know that God was definitely helping us out because their house is up some hill then down some sketchy hallway and stuff... basically a place where we'd never normally think of going. But, anyway, we have been working hard with them. Two of the daughters Yessenia and Yohana have baptism dates in December. The mom and the other daughter Yulieth have some challenges but we're working with them.

To be completely honest, I feel like my spanish speaking has dropped a bit probably because Elder H. and I always speak English to each other. I guess its easier to learn Spanish when I'm forced to speak it all the time like last transfer. I'm working on that though.

Vamos bien aquí. Todavía no hemos visto mucho éxito pero estamos trabajando duro. Me ha gustado buenaventuro. Espero que me quede aquí más que un cambio jaja pero no me preocupo. nos vemos en un año y medio

Elders Chase, A., Ho., A., B., and W. with Pres. and Sister Prince

Monday, December 24, 2012

 Hey! Merry Christmas!

That was way sick to see all you guys yesterday on Skype. I got all depressed that night but I'm good now (haha).

So Elder H. and I opened our Christmas packages today. I figured it was just better to do it today on pday when we actually have time. I really want to thank you for all the stuff. I don't know if I got it all yet, but seriously, I was overwhelmed as I saw all the stuff. It was really great. I really, really appreciate it. Oh, and Elder A. loved his stocking and says thanks. I'm currently wearing that purple-ish tie you guys sent me. I really like plain color ties. Just like shirts (haha). I gave a couple to Elder A. too.
So thinking back on yesterday, it was cool to see everyone. I hope everyone felt like they got to talk. I enjoyed the little Spanish with Uncle Ricky, that was cool. I was kinda overwhelmed with all the people around me and noise and stuff but it was fun. It was cool seeing everyone together. It was cool knowing all you guys were there doing the same old thing even though I'm all the way over here.

That's good that Hank (our Bulldog) hasn't started getting too old yet. Maybe he'll still be around when I get back.

The other day I just started thinking and started to feel a little overwhelmed. I started thinking about what I'm actually doing here. Like I'm here in some country in South America trying to tell people why they should change their lives and why our church is true... and do it all in another language. It's just hard sometimes and feels like a lot of pressure. Now that I'm not in training anymore, it's like I have an equal part in all this and these people are depending on me to know what to say and how to help them. But it really is great though. I'm trying to enjoy things right now cause they are going well with my comp and all that. It's weird to think that I'm almost a quarter of the way done already. It's gone by way fast but at the same time I feel like I've been out here forever.

Oh, the other day, we saw two guys yelling at each other and one went into his bus and pulled out a machete and started trying to chop at the other guy. It was nuts (haha).

Entonces fue muy chévere hablar con ustedes ayer. Estoy tratando de disfrutar de cada momento de mi tiempo aquí. Todo esto ha sido maravilloso y todavía acabo de empezar. Me alegro mucho que estén bien. Sigan adelante y haré lo mismo.

Elder Chase

Tuesday, December 11, 2012


Alright so things are still going well. Buenaventura is still awesome. No fish yet thankfully.

We have an English class every Wednesday now, so I took out little whiteboard and wrote the info on it. Then Elder A. and I went around the mercado and I shouted Clase de Inglés a las dos, hoy, barrio Galeón GRATIS. Free English class today 2 o clock. It was fun. I normally would be embarrassed to do something like that but it was fun.
We are teaching this one large family of girls that we contacted. They are pretty cool. I met another guy whose been all over the US and LA who speaks English pretty well. Its' way more humid here than anywhere else. All my papers of everything are always slightly moist. I haven't met Elder E. yet, but Elder W. knows him and says he is cool.

I don't know if I already mentioned this, but I found a recorder in the apartment in Pasto. I still remember how to play it pretty well. I can basically play any hymn with it, haha. Six of us missionaries sang "Angels we  Have heard on High" in the sacrament meeting the other day. It was pretty sick (cool).

I think we are all traveling to Cali tomorrow to interview with the president.

What else...the accent here is really hard to understand. I feel like I've gone back to square one with my ability to understand the language now. It's kind of like someone who is trying to learn English and has to try and understand street slang. It's hard hahaha.

time is going by a lot faster here. I'm enjoying myself and my comp and the people a lot more here. Its great having Elder H. here too.

Oh yeah, thanks for writing me sooner. We always go Monday morning now to print out our emails so anytime before Monday is the best time to write.

Entonces por ahora todo está bien. Estamos trabajando duro y tratando de hacer lo mejor posible. Sigan juiciosos y sigan adelante con todo. Será chévere cuando nos veamos por skype éste mes. Nos vemos

Elder Chase

Monday, December 3, 2012


Ok, so I got transferred again. It's the third transfer and I'm in my third area already. I've been in the same amount of areas that people usually have been in after a year or so. It's cool though because I'm getting to see a lot of the mission.

So when they called us about transfers, I was thinking the one place I didn't want to go was Buenaventura because they eat lots of fish there. So guess where I've been for the last week now! Although I was freaking out when they told me I was coming here, I realized it's AWESOME here. It is by far the coolest place in the mission.

There are a few things that make this the best are in the mission. I don't remember if I mentioned this already, but President Prince had talked to me about my transfer and said some cool things. He said out of 160 missionaries, he needed to choose six who would be good for this assignment, and three were already here so had to pick three missionaries out of all of them to send here. He said he felt impressed that I should be one of them. So that was pretty cool. Another guy is a Dominican named Elder B.. The other guy who got picked to come down here was...Elder H.. hahahaha I was so stoked when president told me he was coming down here with me and he got picked too.

So some things about this place. All six of us live in the same apartment. Its pretty crammed but it's cool cause there are a lot of people to talk to. The DL is another gringo Elder W. He is way cool. My comp is Elder A. from Bolovia. He's awesome. Elder H's comp is Elder A., who was in the Bogotá mtc with us. The missionaries just got here to Buenaventura about 6 months ago. There are only the six of us in the entire city. Elder A. and I are opening a new area called La Isla. We have the island part of the city. It's not like an island island. It's basically like Balboa Island, where its technically an island but doesn't feel any different. Its way cool to be able to see the water. I feel way more at home living close to the ocean. There are a lot of black people here. 85 percent they say. The accent is so hard to understand. So there's only one branch for the entire city. Everyone here is a new member of the church except the branch president. People here don't really know how to run the church organization, so the missionaries have a way bigger role. We have to help out a lot and make sure the classes don't teach the doctrine correctly. There's no chapel so we use a building that we rent. The branch president told us that it's like the year 1820 here for the church. As if it is just starting and we have to help everyone.

There's really no other place like this in the whole mission. Elder A. said president asked them what kind of missionaries they needed here and he said they told him they needed the very best. They started looking at the lists of zone leaders and stuff and trying to decide who they thought president would send. And then president sent me and Elder H. hahah. Anyway, I think I will be here in Buenaventura for a while. Nobody has given me fish yet so that's a good thing. There is a lot of poverty here. We were walking around some pretty ghetto parts by the ocean the other day. Everyone was just staring at us and people would ask us what we were doing there or if we were lost haha. Then it started getting dark and we were kinda lost... that's when we really started freaking out. We made it out ok though. The problem is this is a new area and we don't know where the dangerous red zones are yet. I guess well find out.

Anyways, so I've been out for almost 5 months now which is nuts to think about. i feel like I've been out here forever, but also like I just got here yesterday.

Esta experiencia ha sido tan chévere. Especialmente aquí en buenaventura. Es chévere que yo esté con E'H. otra vez. Este lugar es lo mejor y sé que disfrutaré de este tiempo. Me cae muy bien mi nuevo compañero. Elder H. y yo nos gusta quejarnos de Elder C. haha. Me alegro que ese tiempo de mi misión ya haya pasado haha y me encanta me nueva parte de la misión Colombia Cali. Espero que todos estén bien allá. nos vemos en dos. Que estén bien.

y para que sepan, creo que en el futuro vamos a escribir mas temprano por la mañana. entonces cuando me escriban, escribanme el domingo para que yo pueda leer las cartas

Elder Chase

Monday, November 26, 2012


So this week was more interesting than usual. First we got to hear from Elder Uceda of the First Quorum of the Seventy. It was pretty cool.

San Fernando Zone with Elder Uceda, his wife and daughter
Last pday we were kinda lost with two of the other gringo elders and we passed by a big catholic church and went inside to look. I felt like I had walked into Ancient Rome in the year 1000 or something.

Oh yeah, the other day we saw a giant cockroach crawling on our ceiling. It was gross.

What else. Um... there are a lot of transvestites here. In case you guys wanted to know haha.

Oh yeah, a huge thanks for all the packages. I got six this week, haha. I want to throw a thank you out to Robert and Tammy for the candy and beef jerky and to Aunt Colleen for the Thanksgiving stuff. I got it the day before Thanksgiving. I really appreciate all the stuff you guys send. I don't know if you guys really understand how appreciated it is. Oh yeah, I am not about to request or demand that you guys send more packages (LOL), but I just wanna say that if you do at some point, please try to ALWAYS include something for my companion. The Latinos never get stuff and the gringos always do and it’s pretty sad. Oh yeah, also please don't forget to throw in some more face soap and any additional face products as they are greatly appreciated too.

In this area we just walk everywhere or we take the Mio which is like a sort of bus system. The taxis here are way too expensive.

As far as food goes, I like this juice they have called lulo. Other than that, it's just lots of rice and potatoes and beans and chicken and stuff. They have some gross juices too like tomate del arbol but I've basically become immune to tomatoes so I can at least down it now.

What else. Oh yeah, I don't know how or why but I've lost major weight this transfer. I don't feel like I have but my suit pants sag without my belt now and I have to pull my belt as tight as it can go on order for it to work. I hope I don't have a tapeworm or something.

Oh yeah I had the chance to talk to President Prince the other day and he talked to me about this next transfer he had in mind for me. He wasn't too specific but he said if it happens, it’s gonna be a step up in difficulty. I'm just really hoping and praying I don't get sent to Buenaventura. The reason being is that they eat fish there all day every day and I don't know I if I can do it. Anyways, I don't know where I'll end up or I could even end up staying here this next transfer. President Prince said some pretty nice things too. I think he trusts me a lot. He said he was trying to put together a sort of "swat team" for whatever area he was talking about. Even if it doesn't happen, it's cool that he would even consider me for something like that. Anyways I'll find out tonight what’s gonna happen and let you guys know next week. 

I'm pretty stressed out about what could end up happening this transfer but I'm just hoping I get a little help from above. Because this transfer was the last of my training, I will just be a normal missionary next transfer. Which means any amount of responsibility could be given to me including training a new companion. The thought of that freaks me out a bit. I still don't understand Spanish very well even though I am comfortable speaking. Anyways, I appreciate the prayers because I may end up needing them...haha. Later

Monday, November 19, 2012


Things are pretty much the same. The weeks just seem to roll by.

The other day we had to go to lunch somewhere up in the hills and we had to pay for a ride in a jeep and there wasn't room inside so Elder C. and I had to stand on the bumper and hold on the whole way. It was kinda sick just rolling through the hills of Colombia like that. I felt like I was in real life Call of Duty or something.

One thing that's really annoying though about this place is that everyone always asks you for money. At least once or twice a day some person will ask us for money.

Also, I don't know if you guys really need to know this because it's gross... but hilarious. One of the guys in my zone saw a lady squat down on the sidewalk and take a poop in public. Just thought you guys should know that so you have an idea of what this place is like sometimes, haha. Gross, but hilarious.

Anyways, other than that I'm just hoping for some sort of change this transfer. I'm really trying hard to get along with my comp but it's so hard sometimes. I get so bored in the mornings sitting at my desk at ten o'clock when he's still sleeping. I'll even make him some breakfast with some of the food I bought with my own money and he'll just walk in, eat the food, and go back to the room without even saying thank you. And the fact that he will do things like lie to the Zone Leaders about being late to the house and make up some story...well, it makes me angry when I look at him. All he ever talks about is how he still has 2 months left and that's "soo long before he can go kiss girls and stuff again." UGH.
Anyways, yeah, sorry, I know I should focus on the good and I really am trying, but I just had to let all that out to someone. It's just hard, I miss being able to choose the people I surround myself with. They say this helps you prepare for marriage but at least you get to choose your wife, haha.

Anyways, none of our investigators are really progressing right now. Although something cool was that last Saturday the sister missionaries had 3 baptisms and I got to be the person to baptize them. That was cool! I have pictures but we haven't found and internet cafe thing where I can send them yet.

Estoy tratando de segir adelante. Extraño a Elder I. y Pasto también, haha, pero está bien. Sé que Dios me bendicirá y les bendicirá tambien. Nos vemos en dos.

Elder Chase

Monday, November 12, 2012

Hey everyone

Things are going okay. The missionary work is going pretty slow. Our ray of hope was this one family Juan Carlos and Paola, but we found out the other day they aren't married so we can't give a baptismal date until they get married. That should be an interesting conversation.

So every Sunday the three zones in Cali get together for choir practice and I get to talk to a couple of the guys who were in my district in Bogotá and Elder L., who was my 3rd MTC comp. I'm just learning that not liking your comp 100 percent is just part of the mission. I at least have some relief knowing that I'm not the only one who's going through this and that everyone gets homesick sometimes or just has those days where they just don't want to hear another word of Spanish (haha). I'm just trying to focus on the positive and just push through and enjoy the mission. It’s like President Uchtdorf said, "we don't listen to a song just anticipating the end, we listen to it to enjoy the song." That's the attitude I'm trying to have, although I'm not gonna lie, it's hard sometimes (haha).

Entonces, poco a poco trato de llegar a ser un misionero mejor. Por lo menos creo que mi español es mucho mejor que antes en el CCM (MTC) haha. Aunque todavía no entiendo todas las cosas que me dicen las personas, más o menos puedo decir lo que necesite. La obra y ser misionero no es fácil, pero sé que El Señor bendice a sus hijos cuando obedecen los mandamientos y dan su mejor. Nos vemos en dos.

Élder Chase

Monday, November 5, 2012

Hey everyone

So I haven’t send any pictures yet cause the truth is I haven’t really taken any cause there hasn’t been much to take pictures of or time to take pictures. Although I think we are supposed to go somewhere today where I can.

Also the other day our zone went down to the stake center to do something about some choir. I don’t really know what was happening and I didn’t really want to be a part of it ESPECIALY when the lady started making us go up to the piano one by one and go la la la LA LA la la to whatever notes she was playing. It was dumb and embarrassing but what I didn’t know is that was basically like tryouts to see if we were good enough to be in the multistake Christmas choiring. And apparently I did good enough to where I get to be in it. I didn’t really care at the time but turns out not all of the missionaries get to do it. So then we had the first practice yesterday and it was awesome. I was with the bajos, or the basses which is fine with me cause the low notes are way easier to hit. Anyways so yeah the 3 songs we are singing are like 3 of my favorites. Santa La Noche, Din Don, and Qué hijo es este. which are Holy night, Ding Dong, and What Child is This. I’m not really all about choirs and stuff but it was actually pretty fun and A nice break from the usual routine. I got to see Elder E. from my district in Bogotá and Elder L. my 3rd MTC companion which was pretty cool. so yeah imp pretty glad I get to be in it cause all the missionaries who didn’t make it had to just sit there and watch for 2 hours.

That’s cool about Holmes Clark and Hammer being ZLs. I finish my training this transfer and after that I can be anything which is a scary thought cause I don’t feel prepared to be even a DL.

As far as everything else goes I’ve just been trying to keep a positive attitude which is really freakin hard sometimes. The mission is way harder than I ever imagined it would be but at the same time I’m glad I’m here. I’m just trying to enjoy every moment cause I know it will all be over someday and just be a bunch of memories. I’ve learned that the busier you are the faster the time goes by but when you don’t do anything that day it goes by soo slow. Spanish is coming along ok. I’m just glad I speak as much as I do cause I met another elder this week from Arizona who’s been here 8 months and speaks worse than me so yeah it could always be worse.

se aprende mucho durante la misión. Ya he tendido experiencias buenas y malas y todavía estoy en el principio. Trabajo más duro que he trabajado en toda me vida. No les voy a mentir, a veces estoy tan aburrido especialmente por las mañanas cuando debemos tener estudio compañerismo y mi compañero esta dormido. Pero ya llevo cuatro meses en la misión y se que va a pasar rápido. entonces espero que estén bien y gracias por escribirme. nos vemos en dos.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hey everyone.

I've been here in Cali for a little while now and things are still going really slow. I'm not exactly sure, but I think I'm in the south/south east part of Cali. The people here have a lot more money than the people in Pasto which is cool in some ways and makes things way harder in others.

I haven't had a headache since I got here. I'm thinking it may have been the altitude because I only got them in Bogotá and Pasto. I also bought a pair of cheap sunglasses like Hermana Prince told me so I don’t squint as much in the sun anymore.

So, our church building is always full of these bugs called cucarones. They're basically cockroaches that can fly. It really makes being in the building stressful and it doesn't help that everyone likes to make fun of the fact that they creep me out.

Fun fact: So the sewage system here all goes to a river thing that runs through the middle of the city. Because of this, whenever we get near it we get to smell the poop and pee of every person that has gone to the bathroom in the city. Also, apparently there are a lot of bacteria in the air because of this. It’s a miracle that I haven't gotten parasites or anything yet. Although, I did get a really bad stomach ache a week ago.

I did have the chance to talk to one of the gringos who is in my mtc group and it sounds like everyone is having the same sort of experience. Everyone has had some sort of stomach problems and the majority have had companion problems too. Makes me feel lucky for having had Elder I.

Also, I don't know if you guys realize how appreciated the packages are. They feel kind of like what I imagine a care package in the middle of a war would be. Especially the face products are appreciated. If you guys get around to sending another package, more of the same face soap would be greatly, greatly appreciated...and more of those face pads wouldn't hurt either. But seriously, the packages are great I don't trust the hygiene products they sell here anyway.

Entonces en este momento las cosas son un poquito difícil pero la cosa que me ayuda es la esperanza que será mejor con tiempo. Estoy tratando de se lo mejor misionero que puedo. Sé que esta obra es tan importante y estiy agradecido por la opurtunidad que tengo. Me alegro que estén bien. Si piensan en semanas, no hay mucho tiempo hasta que yo vuelva a casa. Pero ustedes pueden hacer las matemáticas. Listo que estén bien y sigan adelante.

Elder Chase

Monday, October 22, 2012

Hey everyone.

I got transferred out of Pasto after only 1 transfer there. I've been in Cali since last Tuesday. My new zone is called San Fernando and the area is Limonar II. I was really upset about having to leave Pasto. I wasn't expecting it. Usually missionaries stay at least 3 months in their first area to complete their training. I really didn't want to leave. For one, Elder I. is great and he stayed behind in Pasto to start training someone else. Also, we had six baptisms on the 20th that I missed out on. They were all people whom I had started out with since the very first contact.

 My new companion is Elder C. He is also from Perú. He has 20 months in the mission and will probably end it here with me. He seems okay. He loves to talk, but is a lot looser and less focused than Elder I. The worst part is that we are both new to the area because this area just got cut. It used to be the area of the hermanas but they cut it and now Elder C. and I share the ward with the hermanas. Its pretty hard because we started with no investigators, not knowing any of the members or the city. Turns out we are the first Elders this ward has had in 15 years.

On the other hand, Cali seems really cool. Its a lot warmer here. Last night we were outside and it was dark with warm wind blowing. It was pretty nice. Our apartment is a lot nicer than the one I had in Pasto, also. Its new so everything works for the most part. The only bad thing is we have no hot water.

Anyways, these next few weeks should be interesting. I've been getting massive headaches every once and awhile since I arrived on Colombia. Sister Prince said my eyes might be going bad and I should probably get them checked out.

Anyways, aside from being bummed about the transfer, I am still grateful for the opportunity to be here. I know the mission isn't supposed to be easy and I just have to keep pushing through. All the emails and stuff are appreciated. I know that the gospel is true and that it really can change people's lives.

Elder Chase

Monday, October 15, 2012

Hey Everyone!

We went to some place an hour and a half away to go play soccer with some people who hadn't seen missionaries in 11 years or something like that. We got back really late and we're probably gonna hear it for writing past 6 o clock. :)

I got that package last week with the sweaters. They were greatly appreciated. And the face soap, too. The face soap here I'm pretty sure is just making it worse. If you guys ever send another package, more face soap is appreciated. Oh yeah, and I don't know why you guys sent me that white shirt, but it"s appreciated because all my shirts are size 17 and are way too big. I think 16 and a half would have been better but it's not that big of a deal.

To email, Elder I. and I have to go to an internet cafe. There are a whole bunch of them here. There's no way they'd let us have a computer in our apartment, haha.

As far as food goes, I don't think I've had a meal here without rice. I'm so sick of rice. But they do like potatoes and chicken too, and that's pretty good. Elder I. and I eat breakfast in the apartment. I usually make eggs if I'm not feeling lazy. We have lunch at a members house every day. We usually don't eat dinner because people always give us food at every appointment.

I didn't get the picture of my collage in the email. I don't know why, but that's cool that she put that for me. And that's cool that Bishop mentioned me... What did he say? Oh yeah, and I told Jordan to get his papers in so he can get out here already.

Anyways. Sorry I don't have a lot of time, but all the emails and stuff are greatly appreciated. Nos vemos en 21 meses.

Elder Chase

Monday, October 8, 2012

Hey everyone

So things are going well. Conference was cool and it was a really nice break from the normal routine. I really liked the talk President Uchtdorf gave about enjoying the ride and listening to a song to enjoy it not to hear the end. It made me think of my mission and how I should try to enjoy every second of it and not just think about the future. Elder Bednar and Holland's talks were good too. They were very similar to the two recent MTC devotionals they gave.

Oh yeah, Pasto just got Mountain Dew for the first time. There are posters of it everywhere. It's hilarious. So of course, I've already drank like four in the past three days. That and Oreos are the only things I recognize that you can basically buy anywhere.

A kid in the ward just left for Spain on his mission and is in the Bogotá MTC. We met some of his friends at his family night farewell and now four of them want to be baptized and have set baptismal dates. We had a pretty good week two weeks ago. As of now, we have 13 baptisms scheduled for the 27th. That would be huge if it actually happens, but most likely at least half won't make it. And also, our area is being cut down in the following weeks so some of the baptisms won’t technically count as ours (but I will still count them... hah!)

Oh yeah, and when you guys do send packages, music is appreciated... like the soundtracks or whatever really.

To answer some of the questions Elder I. is from Huancayo, Peru. His parents and family converted when he was six. He is the youngest and has like five sisters and a brother or something like that. He is the first to serve outside of Peru. He is really good with computers and is really chill. I'm really lucky to have him as a companion. The other new gringo in my group, who was in my district in Bogotá, is having problems with his comp, so I'm pretty lucky.

As far as the mission affecting me, I think it's helping put things in perspective a bit and has helped me see the big picture more. I guess before I just didn't understand how real everything is with the gospel and stuff.

I don't think I've been here long enough to really see any huge changes in people's lives yet, but it is cool to see people accept the things you teach and frustrating when people flake out on stuff (which happens 90 percent of the time). We're still teaching the family Villacortez. One of the girls hugged me and didn't know about the rules (physical contact with the opposite sex). It was awkward...hah! Also, fun fact: apparently it's normal for women to nurse their kids in public and in front of people. It's always interesting to see the reactions when people open the door and they are doing that... haha!.

Entonces todo esta bien aquí, sin embargo todavía no entiendo la gente. Si yo hubiera estudiaso más en escuela, tal vez entendería mejor. Pero no estoy preocupado sé que estas cosas vienen con tiempo. Sé que este es el unico lugar en el mundo donde debo estar. Que estén bien. 


Monday, October 1, 2012

Hey everyone

So we had another baptism Saturday. She is 12 and her name is Gabriela. It was pretty cool.

As a zone we did really well this week. For the month we averaged 4 baptisms per companionship.

And yeah, I do like the when you guys send pics with the emails. I printed out some and showed them to the people down here.

The volcano basically looks like a mountain. It does make me uncomfortable sometimes but I usually don't think about it.

For the most part, things have really been the same. Elder I. and I are always busy with investigators and finding new people to teach.

Oh yeah, so yesterday we were knocking doors and we found a door that had a sign above it that said, "Esta familia es cristiana, la casa está abierta para cualquier persona que quiera conversar acerca de nuestro señor Jesus."

translation: This family is Christian. The house is open for anyone who wants to converse about our Lord Jesus.

So, of course, we knocked the door and some guy answered and Elder I. said "Hello, we came because of the sign. We'd like to talk with you about Jesus." And, of course, the guy made up some excuse that he already knew of Christ or something and didn't want to talk to us. I thought it was kinda ironic... haha.

So anyway, let me know what you guys want to know and I look forward to hearing from you the next Monday. Later

Entonces entiendo un poco mas cada día pero todavía es difícil. Me dijeron que los primeros meses son lo mas difíciles y sé que eso es verdadero. Pero es bueno que yo haya tenido clases antes porque muchos de los misoneros que empezaron el misión conmigo hablan peor y sé que podría ser más difícil para mi. Sé que no hay otro lugar en el mundo donde debo estar. Me encanta las personas aunque no las entiendo. Me alegro que todo esté bien allí. Hasta el próximo lunes.

Elder Chase

Monday, September 24, 2012

Hey everyone

Aight, so we had the Noche Blanca on Saturday. It was sick (awesome). Elder I. and I had 2 baptisms. With the whole zone it was like 12. So yeah, I got to baptize one of them. His name is Juan G. I'll send a couple pics. It was pretty legit. President Prince was there.

So yeah, president Prince is awesome. Just thought I'd throw that out there.

Fun fact, turns out I have A+ blood type.

Oh yeah, also on Saturday, I taught an English class. It was pretty cool. It was all little kids, moms, and a few teenage girls. I am gonna be teaching an English class Every Saturday now. Pretty legit!

Also...I tried Cuy for the first time on Sunday at the house of the people we baptized. Cuy is the roasted guinea pig. It was really disturbing to see them impale the dead guinea pig on a stick and slowly roast it over coals and then slice it up. I didn't really like the taste very much, it’s kinda like fish.

Anyways, still working hard. Oh and to answer the question about where we live, it is an apartment I sent some pics of it I think. It’s pretty small and my head almost touches the ceiling. It was kind of nasty at the beginning but I've done some cleaning and its better.

Entonces las cosas estàn mejorando poco a poco. Todavía es difícil entender pero sè que la idioma vendrá con tiempo y trabajo duro. He aprendido mucho y sè que aprenderè mas. Nos vemos.

 Elder Chase
La familia Guacales with Elders Chase and I.
Brandon's first baptism while serving in Colombia. Juan G. y su esposa

Monday, September 17, 2012

Hey everyone,

Aight, so first things first. This week I had my first experiences with gross food. I just ate at some chicken and fries restaurant with Elder I. and they gave us soup and it had chicken foot and chicken heart with valves and everything. I just took out the stuff and drank the broth. At least that was in a restaurant so I'm not obligated to eat it all.

Also, a few days ago someone served us fish. It wasn't a “staring at me” fish but it was like the front half looked like fried meat and the back half looked like dead fish with tail and everything...I couldn't do it. Luckily no one was watching us eat and luckily I followed the advice of Bishop Smith and put a plastic bag in my backpack to secretly discard the fish. Elder I. doesn't understand and I think it bothered him a bit. Oh well. I think I'd prefer that than to have to actually eat it.

So, as far as the packages go, in Pasto we only get them every transfer. So I won’t get any until October, but it's okay because I know chances are for sure I'll be here a minimum of at least another month and a half after that, so it’s all good.

So they always told us in the MTC that we need to be ready at any moment to give talks in church because the people who are supposed to give them often don't show up. I thought I was safe because they didn't even ask me to share my testimony the first week. Of course yesterday, they asked me and Elder I. to give talks. I've never even winged a talk in English and I had to make up a talk on the spot in Spanish...yeah, it went okay, I think. Oh yeah, I thought I might mention that the people down here are not the best singers. I am a terrible singer and they make me sound like an angel.

So this Saturday we are having the "noche blanca" where the whole zone is having a combined baptism. We had five dates set, but one didn't show up to church yesterday so she will have to wait until she commits to attend church more regularly. Two others told us to never go back to their house. I`m pretty sure they had been talking to the Jehovahs Witnesses. They make our life the biggest pain, I swear. We had to spend one lesson with our investigator Maria explaining everything that the Jehovah’s Witnesses had told her that was incorrect about our Church. I honestly think they are following us and talking to everyone we talk's frustrating. They just go talk to people and talk smack about us and the church. I don't get it because we have never talked bad about any other church. Oh well, we have to remember that people have their agency.

On the good side, our two baptisms this Saturday are Juan and Betty. They are probably in their fifty's and are for sure, as long as they can give up their coffee. I think we have taught word of wisdom like 8 times in the past 2 days. No one here understands why coffee is bad for you.

Our other baptismal date is for the 29th. A girl named Gabriella. I think she's thirteen and she’s great! We are trying to get her cousins to commit, but they are a bit stubborn. Another big reason people don't get baptized is because they are living together and aren't married, or haven't divorced someone legally. It's a pain because these people want to be baptized but they have to wait for papers and stuff.

Also, I haven't tried cuy yet, which is the grilled guinea pig thing. I don't know, it's just nasty to eat something that is dead and has a facial expression which looks like it’s being tortured.

Entonces, estamos trabajando duro y estoy estudiando mucho. Sé que algun día entenderé estas personas. Siempre me gusta recibir cartas de ustedes. Es bueno que toda esté bien allí en los estados. Estoy tratando hacer ejercisios cada mañana para que no regrese a ustedes un gordito. Todas las personas nos da comida y siempre es pan y chocolate. Nos vemos.

Elder Chase

Monday, September 10, 2012

Hey everyone

Okay, so I'm here in Pasto. It's not that cold but cold enough to the point where I have a nice blue sweater to wear around haha. I would have bought a black or a grey one but the only colors they had even close to my size are blue, orange, and pink.

My companion is Elder I. He's from Peru. He's way chill. He's exactly how President described him- not in your face annoying but he does like to talk.

Oh yeah, they say for packages, you should send them in like one of those bubble envelopes cause then it won’t cost anything for me to go pick it up. Also they say just to send all packages to the main mission home and then they will ship them to me. 
Anyways, it's pretty nice not being all cooped up in the MTC. The people here speak slower but I still have a pretty hard time understanding people. I haven't had any weird food yet but apparently I'm gonna have to try the roasted hamster soon. Oh well. They mostly just eat potatoes and rice here. It's weird cause they always give you soup before your meal so entonces the food is cold by the time you get to it. The only thing I've had to choke down was my first meal they gave me this tomato water stuff. It was gross. Oh yeah, somehow I lost all my soap in between here and the MTC so I'm just gonna have to buy some face soap and stuff here.

The people here love it when I teach them English. Apparently I am teaching an English class this Saturday. Should be interesting seeing how I don't even speak Spanish completely yet. But it's all good and should be fun.

Everyone here thinks I am some sort of martial arts expert because when they ask what sport I do, there's no equivalent word to college type wrestling here. So when I say luchar. They think I mean like lucha libre. So because of this, I get to teach a self-defense class too...that should be interesting.

Night time is still sketchy around here, although Pasto is one of the safer areas. President Prince kept telling us to be prepared not for "if" you get robbed, but "when" you get robbed haha. Nah, but for real, I feel like as long as you’re not dumb, and you pay attention to everything around you, we should be fine.

Oh yeah, if you send anything, make sure to include pictures. The people here love to look at pictures of me and my family. The one the other Chases sent me... everyone has seen and they all love it haha.

If you wanted to send me like a dark sweater or jacket that'd be cool cause as much as I love looking like a blueberry... Besides, I'm pretty sure if we can help it, we are supposed to wear dark colors. Like a black jacket from t-shirts plus would be cool or something like that. They don't make you wear your suit coat over the sweaters and stuff so people wear jackets.. It doesn't really matter as long as its big enough haha like XL probably.

Entonces, creo que el campo es mucho mejor que el CCM haha pero esta bien. Espero que todo esté bien allí si alguien tenga alguna pregunta de cualquier cosa me gustaría contestarlo. Sé que este es la obra del señor y trabajo cada día a ayudar las personas a venir a Cristo. Chao

Elder Chase at Cristo Rey look-out
Cristo Rey

View of Cali from Cristo Rey

Elder Chase and Elder I.