Hey fam,                                                                                                                  March 24, 2014
This week Hermana Henderson and I saw a lot of great things happening here in Arauco and some many intances where the Lord is preparing people and blessing us.
So twice this week we hit up the feria (like an outdoor market) in the morning to find some escogidos. We just set up a little table and put some of the pamphlets and pictures we had and started talking to people. It turned out to be so amazing. We had been working really hard on finding people since re opening this sector and this was one of the things we were trying to mix it up. Turns out the feria is the place to be in Arauco. We made friends with a bunch of the people selling things and they were all so nice. I think they secretly felt bad for the two white girls standing in the sun. We got free Mote con Huesillos (I am not really sure how to explain what it is, other than a chileno drink), empanadas and alfajores (a little pastry). 
While were there on Saturday morning this guy came up who was walking his bike around and just stood there staring down at the pamphlets not saying anything so we started talking to him and he didnt respond at all and then just looked up asked in English, "Where are you guys from?" and then proceeded to tell us that the day before his sisters boyfriend had passed away suddenly and they were all so confused and lost as to why something like that would happen to them. He said he wasnt sure if God even existed really and he was out looking for answers and he didnt even know why he had come come to the feria that day because he shouldve been with his sister. He said he just wanted to know if his sister could ever even feel joy  or have hope for a good life again. We bore our testimonies to him and talked to him for a while and after we set up a time to see him and his sister and he walked away I was just speechless. I couldve even believed that had happened. It reaffirmed to me why I am here. This guy, Mauricio, and his sister have been so prepared by the Lord in every aspect. Even the fact that he was at the feria for no reason while we were there and that we had even decided to go there, something we had never done before. It was a miracle and such a blessing. If nothing else ever worked out I know everything would be worth it if we could just help Mauricio and his sister to come unto Christ and find hope in Him. We are going to see them tomorrow and I cant wait.
The other day my companion and I were also talking about how as missionaries we go to people's houses and share with them and try to help them and when we leave their houses they still continue living their lives. They still have their problems and trials. There are some menos activos in our ward, Ema and Nibaldo. They are an older couple and she has had Parkinsons really bad for the last 5 years or so and is so bitter and unhappy about her situation and doesn't understand why those things have happened to her. Her husband, Nibaldo has to help her do every single thing and you can just tell he is so tired all the time. We had a lesson with them yesterday and one of their sons who is in his 40's was visiting. Everyone really opened up about what was hard for them in their current situation and their son really called them all to repentance in a way. That they both need to decide to be happy and look for the best in situations because our situations do not determine our happiness. We didn't even really say a whole lot during that lesson and I think sometimes as missionaries we don't need to really say anything. We need to help people feel the spirit and give them the opportuninity to open up and come to their own conclusions. To create an environment where the spirit is present. I realize more and more everyday how little we actually do in the conversion of others and how dependant we are on the spirit. We are just instruments for the Lord. Without it, there would be no success, no conversion, nothing. But that when we do work with the Spirit there is so much power and so much change. It is so awesome that I get to do this everyday. 
I love you guys a ton. Thanks for everything!
Love always,
Hermana Chalmers
DyC 18:15

Hey team,                                                                                                                    March 17, 2014
It has been an awesome week. One of the best weeks I have ever had I think. Hermana Henderson and I tried to give it everything we had all week long. We get along really well and so we knew we had to crack down if we wanted to do the work well and help this sector progress. We even wrote all over our agendas and such "Maquina Week 2014" like a bunch of squares. But it was really great to see all the blessing and miracles that came when we did our part and worked hard. Exact obedience brings miracles! I think the best part of this week was the fact that we found this 24 year old, who we have been teaching and wants to get baptized. He is probably one of the sketchiest people I have ever met, but he surprises us every day. After our first lesson we left him with the Book of Mormon to read 2 Nefi 31 and he read that, the intro, all the testimonies and the first four chapters of the book of mormon. Whoooo! We were so excited. He told us about how he had been talking with God all morning and He told him to keep listening to the missionaries because it is time for him to get his life in order. We took him to a baptism in Lota (about 45 minutes away in bus) because he really wanted to see one before his own baptism and it was the funniest experience. We were practically running to make it on time and then he tells us that he hasnt eaten all day and HAS to go buy some cookies. Then once we get there he asks a member if there is any coffee or ecco or something he could have. So then right as the baptism is starting this member runs in and sneaks the ecco to the guy so he was just slurpin on some ecco and cookies all through the baptism. Haha he also doesn't know how to whisper so that has been hilarious. 
On the bus he dropped the bomb on us that he has a girlfriend, a 5 year old son and another on the way. He also told us about how he got a dog bite earlier in the week because he hit a dog when he was drunk. So that was nice. He came to church on Sunday, and the members all had a lot to say about him to us. Arauco is a really small town so everyone knows everyone and every joven in the branch knew all about him. Apparently he has a bad past and they were all worried about us. I really do believe that he has a real desire to learn and change and is developing a testimony of the church. We are passing him to the Elders in our area to continue teaching him, which is hard, but we know it is best and there are more people out there for us to teach. As long as he is able to continue learning about the gospel and repenting, it doesn't matter which missionaries are teaching him. 
This week I taught almost every joven we talked to how to say, "boom. roasted."
I also made a list of "things that mean a lot more to me now" than they did before I left on my mission. I want to send it to you guys next week. I love the mission so much and it is helping me in every aspect of my life to change and become better. 
Also it has made me realize the things I took for granted before, one of them being SHAG CARPET. 
I love you guys!
Hermana Chalmers
Ether 12: 4


A month's worth of letters and pictures

March 10, 2014
Ayooooo! Hoy tengo 6 meses en la misión! Yo no se como el tiempo pasa tan rápido! But the best part was that I got to hear where Cam is going on his mission today. WHOOOOO! I am so pumped for him! Michigan is going to get C Twiced so hard.
This week has been great, but definitely crazy. We had a big mission conference in Los Angeles a couple hours away from our area and we had to wake up at 5am and take a bus to get there on time but it was so great. Presidente Martinez spoke to us and showed pictures of his baptism when he was 18. Then he brought up two gringos that came with him and it was his missionaries that baptised him! It was so amazing. They talked a lot about how the blessing and fruits of missionary service sometimes aren't seen until later, until afterwards. 
Also the other day we did some contacts in the plaza. So we go up to talk this group of jovenes and they said they had been busy making some crazy raps so we asked to hear an example and they made up a classic rap something like, "hemos visto, hermana chalmers es escrito, habla de Jesucristo..." and I cant remember anymore but I felt preeettttyy cool.
The other day we went to contact this referral of a member. It was this menos activo and her boyfriend that isn't a member. It was so sad to talk to her because she just kept telling us over and over how she never thought she would be inactive and she used to never miss a sunday and she has been through the temple and everything. She told us how when she started living with her boyfriend and their two kids she got her rights taken away in the church and she is too ashamed to come back. She said everytime she sees her temple clothes she cries. It was really sad listening to her and seeing the look in her eyes of being so dissappointed at the point she is in her life. We are going to work with her to help her start coming to church again. The gospel isn't for the perfect. It is for those who need help like Claudia.
I was reading a talk the other day and I really liked a line that said, "life is hard, not the gospel." 
I love you guys!
Love always,
Hermana Chalmers

                                                    Hermana Henderson and me
                                                    The beach

March 3, 2013
Hey Team,
I love Arauco so much! It is the coolest little town. We live right on the coast, we went running one morning and ran to the beach and it only took like 15-20 minutes. It reminds me in a way of Sun Valley ID, but Chileno style so definitely not as fancy. I really do love it here though. The people are great too. I dont know what it is about a small town but the people are all slightly crazy and it is hilarious. We went out with a member, Hermana Campos, who is about 80 years old, to visit some of her vecinos that are inactive. We go up to the gate (evert house here is surrounded by a gate so if it is locked you just yell "Alooo" to knock) and Hna Campos all within like 30 seconds screams, "Aloooo!" ... "Hola!" ... "HERMANA!" and then she picked up a rock and threw it in between the gate at the door so they would answer. So so funny. 
Also there is a lady in our ward that is originally from St. George. Jerry Tucker. She served a mission here and then came back and got married and has lived here for like 10 years, maybe Sister Webb knows her or something.
My companion, Hermana Kristin Henderson, is awesome. She just turned 22 and we get along really well. Sometimes we have to watch ourselves because we think a lot of the same things are really funny and we will catch ourselves cracking up at things when we shouldn't be. She is also going to BYU after the mission along with every companion I have had, haha so that will be great.
Ask Derek Downey if he knows an Elder Brand from Chile from his mission. He is our branch president here in Arauco and he served his mission in New York around the same time as Derek. Also he somehow gets Dr. Pepper over here so lunch at his house this past week was the best ever.
The other day we were walking to an appointment and we passed this family with buckets of blackberries so we asked them where they got them. Turns out they had just gone out to the campo (like the countryside) and picked them wild. They let us try some and we were probably over reacting at how good they were so they gave us a whole bucket! Yeah! It was the greatest blessing because it was a Sunday and we were completely out of food at the house. 
I am so excited to be here and I know that this sector has so much potential. The members are so willing to work hard with us, we just have to help them know what they are supposed to do and teach them how to do it. Also, CONGRATS CAM!! BYU!
Love you guys a ton!
 Hermana Meg C

Feb. 24, 2014

Fam! CAMBIOS! I am leaving Temuco-Cautin. So crazy! I am going to Arauco. It is in the North of our mission right on the coast an hour or two South of Concepcion. I am so excited. My companion is Hermana Henderson. She is from California and is Hermana Fonsecas really good friend in the mission. I am so excited! I leave tomorrow and even though I will miss Cautin and Hermana Fonseca I know that this is another opportunity to learn and grow in new ways.
This last week in Cautin has been so great. First off, SERGIO GOT BAPTIZED! I don't know if I have told you about him but he is the fiance of a member who used to be less active but is now coming back to church. He is 22 and is so great. I have never seen someone change so much is so little time. He had a lot of things he had to work on and repent about to be baptized and this past Saturday he got an interview with Presidente Martinez and passed and got baptized a couple hours later that same day. It was the craziest day but also one of the greatest days of all my mission. Sergio was so excited and grateful the whole day. He is a really tender guy and after he got baptized he shared his testimony with everyone and just started to bawl and say how he couldnt even begin to say how grateful he was for the gospel and the people that have helped him to be baptized. I will send pictures!
Also, I played piano yesterday in sacrament meeting. Thanks mom for making me take piano lessons. I knew it was for something. Haha. But really it was last minute because the hermano that usually plays the piano didnt show up so I just had to cross my fingers that I could get by. 
I have learned so much in Cautin but I am really excited to go North. There are so many changes in the mission and I am learning to welcome them because each one is really an opportunity for me to change and to become better than I was before.
Love you guys a ton!
Hermana Megs

                                                       Sergio's baptism
                                 My sweet agenda that Hermana Fonseca helped me make

To say goodbye the bishop's family made me a greenie breakfast since I started my mission here. SWAG

Feb. 17 ,2014 

I love you guys! 1 Nefi 7:12
[Megan sent some voice memos this week instead of her usual letter]