Monday, September 28, 2015


Hi everyone! My first week here has been great. I am serving in the Acacias sector, Huancavilva Zone. It is the northern most part of the mission. So we have just south of Downtown Guayaquil. It is a pretty rough place, south of the city in the ghetto. The apartment we both live in is pretty nice for the area, we have a small kitchen, bedrooms and a blue bathroom. Our sector is pretty small. About a mile wide by maybe 600 meters long. There is such a high concentration of houses though. The weather is always hot and muggy, but it cools down enough at night to sleep because we have a lot of fans in the apartment. We also sleep under huge mosquito nets, even though there are not a whole lot of them in our area.

The mission president is a great guy! He has about 10 months left out here to serve and gave us some great training. We learned about the formula for success out here on the mission, Charity + obedience + the spirit is how we have success. As a mission we have a goal of 600 baptisms every month...we have not hit the goal yet but we always get very close. We are the highest baptizing mission in the world as of right now. We do have some more strict rules because they hold us to such high esteem. We are not allowed to play sports, even on P day. And on P day we are to stay in our proselyting clothes all day. At first I was bummed, but then I figured out that we need to make sacrifices and give in to the Lords will in order to help the work progress more rapidly out here.

The flights out here were great. We went smoothly through Colombia and got out here to meet my companion. His name is Elder Tomlinson and he is from the Portland area. He is gringo just like me and has about 10 months left out on the mission. He has a great spirit, and is teaching me how to work and more importantly, more spanish. And guess what....He has served in the Galapagos! I asked the mission president about serving there and he said its like the Celestial Kingdom...only the most obedient and hardest working missionaries get to go there. So I have something good to motivate me!

We had 3 baptisms this week! I attached some pictures. They are some people they had been teaching, and we interviewed them this last week and finished teaching and they were ready for baptism! I got to baptize Jeremy this last week. He is the younger boy. And this is the family in the ward who we got the references from! The members always have the best references for us to teach. And Gabriela and Nicole, the other two we baptized, have more friends and family we can teach! We are so excited and ready to get to work. 

We have a goal to give 8 invites to be baptized everyday in our mission. Each companionship. I love having such motivated leaders and mission! It has helped me to want to work so much harder to reach those goals. There are something like 250 missionaries in the mission, and if we all manage 3 baptisms a month, we can achieve the goal of 600 baptisms a month. 8 invites a day is what 56 a week? That is a lot of potential baptisms! We also have a large pool of investigators and potential baptism dates so we always stay busy!

My first Sunday was great! The ward is full of friendly people who know I cant understand the language when they speak it really fast. I also found out on Sunday I had to give a talk in Sacrament and had only a couple hours to prepare. We talked about missionary work and it went great! I almost took up too much time. The members out here love the missionaries. When we are walking on the streets they always yell AYYY MI GRINGO AMIGOS and come talk to us. Everyone here for work mostly has little stores in their house, so people are always on the streets to talk to. 

The food is not bad. Every week we eat at a members home for Lunch at 1, which is the big meal of the day. Our mamitas usually cook rice, sometimes pasta and some kind of meat, whether bologni, beef or chicken/turkey. The first course is also always a hot soup which is funny because it is always hot outside and I never stop sweating. Not that many places out here have air conditioning. They also always make fresh juice for us. There are a lot of good little stores here that cook fresh bread so sometimes we have that for dinner or for a small meal later that night. Breakfast is usually a banana or some cereal. Today we are going to go to the store and buy some groceries! We do also take the bus a little bit because my companion is our district leader so we have more responsibilities and are always busy!

Anyways an hour sure does fly by on the computers because my trainer is strict which is good! God is good and the work is progressing. Thanks for all your prayers. Ill talk to you guys next week!

Love you guys!!
Elder Solari

Packages and letters can be sent to this address:

Elder William Joseph Solari
Mision Ecuador Guayaquil Sur
Casilla 09-04-566
Guayaquil, Guayas, Ecuador

Packages have to be less than 8 pounds, and sent in padded envelopes will get them here the fastest. Make sure they send it with the green sticker. Also...if you are going to send anything important, hide it in something in the package and cover it in pictures of Christ or the Virgin Mary

Sunday, September 27, 2015


The following pictures & letter arrived via email from the Guyaquil Ecuador South mission home this past Wednesday...

                                                                  MisiĆ³n Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

24 September 2015

Dear Brother and Sister Solari:

It was a very special experience to personally greet your son, Elder Solari, at the airport upon his arrival in Guayaquil. We were impressed by his great spirit and desire to serve. We are grateful and humbled to have him serving here with us.

From the airport we took him and the other missionaries downtown to the Guayaquil Temple for a picture.  We then went to a stake center to meet the office staff and take care of some paperwork, and orientation.  We enjoyed a great Ecuadorian dinner after which it was my privilege to interview your son as well as the other arriving missionaries.  What a nice experience it was to get to know your son and feel his outstanding missionary spirit!

Later in the day, they were assigned companions for their first assignment. The next morning they traveled to their new area. Your son was assigned to the Huancavilca Zone with Elder Tomlinson as his companion. The address for the mission office is Ecuador Guayaquil South Mission, Casilla 09-04-566, Guayaquil, Guayas, Ecuador.  If, in case of emergency, you need to contact your son, please call the mission office.

Your help in encouraging him in your letters to continue to serve faithfully, being completely obedient throughout his mission will be greatly appreciated. We know that he and the Ecuador Guayaquil South Mission will be in your prayers. We also know that the coming months will bring many blessings into your lives by your son´s faithful service and the sacrifice you are making for him to serve the Lord. Thank you very much for having prepared your son to withstand the rigors of missionary life and to now be serving with us.

May God bless you for your consecration towards furthering the Lord´s work.  We send our love and appreciation.

Ecuador Guayaquil South Mission

President Maxsimo C Torres                                       Sister Blanca T. Torres

Thursday, September 17, 2015


(L to R:  Elders Smith, Bolen, Sheppard, Wilson, Peterson, Heap, Waite, Myself and Barba)
Last class with our teacher Hermana Velasquez

This Monday the 22nd at 10:30pm a van is taking Elders Barba, Bolen and I to the Mexico City Airport to catch our first flight at 2:15am to the Bogota, Columbia Airport! We should get in around 6:40am and then we have a 2 hour layover and should be getting in to Guayaquil at about 10:30am. We are all so excited to finally get to Ecuador! It also looks like I have window seats for both flights so that is another big bonus. I will definitely call you guys at whichever airport I have more time in, either Mexico City or Columbia. So be on standby because I will probably be calling from a weird number! I am also going to have to pay to check one of my bags because only 1 is free but they reimburse me when i get to the mission home.

This last week here at the CCM has been great!

It started off really on Saturday with the Cultural Celebration. I dont think I´ve seen a cultural celebration ever before and it was sooo interesting. It was an hour and a half play about the Book of Mormon! It started out with Nephi going and retrieving the plates, and progressed through building the boat, lots of war scenes and ended when Christ appeared to the Nephites! After that it went through the Restoration, and the story of how the Book of Mormon was first translated into Spanish which was a really cool story. And it showed how traditional Spanish dancing has progressed throughout the ages, the ones with the big flowy dresses. It was a really cool experience and really helped to show how far the restoration has come and how much more of the world it still has to reach. 

The Temple dedication was great. Elder Holland and President Eyring both spoke before the dedication. We were watching a CCM only broadcast but it was a live feed and the auditorium was treated like an extension of the temple! All week there had been rumors of Elder Holland stopping by for a surprise devotional Sunday...but our CCM President told us he wanted too but that they did not have enough time to stop by. They did both give some powerful talks...and the dedicatory prayer was amazing. They both kind of talked about how the temple had to be rededicated..but then they turned it into how we really need to rededicate our lives to serve the Lord. And i Think that really hit home with me because I was rededicated and my life was set apart to serve the Lord for these next 2 years. We watch so many talks and excerpts from talks in our classes....and not surprisingly the majority of them are from Elder Holland. He always gives such great talks. 

As far as teaching investigators it is going well. We have 3 that we are teaching almost daily. Some are progressing nicely but one is a little more difficult. We usually follow the lesson order in Preach My Gospel but we always mix it up and really try to teach what the Spirit tells us that the investigator needs to hear. So there are set Lessons we are supposed to teach...but we have leeway in teaching them our way. One thing that is cool about Preach my Gospel and that us missionaries are supposed to do that we are supposed to extend a baptism invitation the first lesson we teach them. The first time I was told that I was almost shocked but now seeing how it has played really helps you to know what the investigator needs to be taught in order to be ready for that next step. 

So the 15th was Mexican Independence Day. And when they party here in Mexico they go big. All week long all we have heard at night is non stop fireworks, live music and gun shots firing into the air. We have also celebrated this a little bit at the CCM because the food has been better than normal and they have had a lot of good Mexican candies

Sorry these last few emails have been short! I know once I get out to Ecuador there will be so much more to tell about and so many more pictures to share! So tomorrow is another big day. Its called our ¨In-field Orientation´ day. We wear our suits all day and go to a bunch of work shops, and goal setting meetings. It should really be when they start teaching us and telling us about how it is going to be in the field. Because up to this point it has just been doctrine and Spanish that we have been taught. So tomorrow should be an exciting day. I also got to try out my rain coat and it works great!

Thanks mom I love you! Pass my love on to Dad the boys and Buster! 

Elder Solari

Dont worry I did get a haircut right after this picture...and I was sick.

Thursday, September 10, 2015


I have been gone for almost a month! Thats crazy! Only 23 more fast Sundays to go until I return home!

I am sure you are all wondering about the subject of this email. It was the quote of the week from Elder Heap in my District. He is from the northern Arizona mountains and is probably the only pure redheaded Elder here....But he is also a bit of a redneck. And super funny. We were just talking about how redheaded people are so rare, and that he needs to pass the gene on so it doesnt go extinct. Then he said " I am a rose in a meadow of dandelions" and we all lost it because he is a pretty macho guy. 

This last week was great. And we are in the home stretch. I can already see Ecuador. The spirit that we constantly feel here is amazing. We are now teaching three separate investigators everyday so we are studying harder and learning more than we have been the rest of the time here. We pray for the gift of tongues everyday and I have seen it manifest itself during our lessons and teaching time. We have pretty much done away with English all together. When we are in class and at meals and such, we do our best to ONLY talk in Spanish. We also do our best to talk with all the Latino missionaries here so they can help us with our spanish also. 

This week at TRC we got to teach a lady who was from Veracruz Mexico. I dont think I had ever heard anybody talk Spanish so fast in my whole life! I would hear the first couple of words, and by the time i knew what they meant she would be a sentence or two ahead! But we did get the just of her message and the experience she shared so we were able to carry on. Speaking Spanish has not been hard, but after this experience....I know it is going to be the hardest to try to understand and comprehend Spanish when it is spoken to us. Our maestro told us that in Ecuador they speak Spanish even faster than that! He also told me that my Spanish is progressing really well, and that I dont have an English accent because i have good pronunciation of the Spanish alphabet. 

This whole last week during Gym time we have been having ping pong tournaments. Every single day we play for about an hour straight and it is so much fun! So many people are good so we play the best games. I am hoping that somewhere in Ecuador there will be a ping pong table that we can use because I love it. Pizza night again this week we had another pizza eating competition in our district and I was challenged by Elder Heap. We both managed 13 slices but he yaked so I am still the champion! Pretty cool huh? I have been shedding off the pounds since I have been here. The altitude mixed with the 3 meals a day and no other food has been good for me. 

This weekend we get to see the broadcast of the temple cultural celebration and dedication! They said the Auditorium was going to be an extension of the temple. So we are going to do the Hosanna Shout and handkerchiefs and everything! I have never seen a live dedication so that is going to be a great experience! We might get to do a session next week but I am not sure yet. I will let you guys know!

We all fasted this last Sunday and it was a great experience. We skipped Dinner Saturday night and Breakfast Sunday morning. It really is such a powerful way to receive blessings and answers to questions in our lives. It is so important! I wish I really knew how powerful it was sooner. It is one of the best ways to feel the spirit. And we dont just have to fast on fast can be any Sunday or any day we need additional clarity or insight in our lives. I know you can receive great blessings!

We also have some cardboard cut outs of Jesus that we got from a district that left! We keep them in the house and at night I like to move them around to scare other Elders in the morning! It is such a fun thing to do! I took a picture with one of them. Sorry I did not have time to get a lot of pictures this week but I will get some more next week!

Is Fighting Zebras football doing that well? I guess I am not surprised because we did get a new Varsity coach who has been doing good things for the team. 16 RANK ADVANCEMENTS? That is pretty crazy. That is exciting though because the scouting program is so important. When is Cole going to start on his Eagle? Yes I remember that hike. It was definitely a fun one. I am glad Bustey boy enjoyed it! Is he still limping or has he gotten better?

That is awesome about Cole being the freshmen class president! yeah I think that means he is over the float creation...but he is pretty creative so I know he will do a good job. Wow thats right! Ukraine and the Philippines! They are both going to have so much fun. Make sure to send me some pictures from the wedding! And have a safe trip out to Utah!

I love you mom! Glad all is going well with the family. You guys take care! Im praying for all of you!


Elder Solari

Thursday, September 3, 2015



I am so excited that I am past the halfway point in the MTC. All day long I dream about the mountains and the trees and the world outside this beautiful compound we have to stay in. Especially with the news of that big Volcano Cotopaxi that is bound to erupt any day now! Thats exciting!

The Temple should be dedicated before we leave, I am not sure if we will all be going to the dedication or if we are just going to have it broadcast in the auditorium. I would love to attend a session in Spanish....that would be really cool!

This week was a great one. Everyday we have gym time, and believe it or not I am getting into playing cage soccer here at the CCM! It is an outdoor caged in basketball court that has soccer goals right under it. It is so much fun! We play everyday and on Prep day now! I am actually starting to enjoy futbol more and more now! There is also an Elder in my district, his name is Elder Heap and he likes to lift in the gym so we get to do that together! Hes from a small town near Flagstaff Arizona.

Our district is going great. We all get along so well and have so much fun goofing off and teaching investigators. It is making being out here so much easier. They have a nice little shop here in the CCM and they give us 100 pesos a week for buying stuff like laundry detergent, drinks, snacks, copies of the book of mormon, etc. Everything is so cheap out here! I think 17 pesos equals about 1 USD but it goes pretty far.

We are in the motions for the next couple of weeks until we leave. We have a couple hours of language study everyday. an hour of personal study, an hour of companion study and then a lot of teacher led lessons about doctrine and spanish as well. We did get a broadcast from the Provo MTC because Elder Dallin H Oaks gave a devotional there about Preach My Gospel and it really stressed how the Plan of Salvation is so important to teach because it really is the foundation for why we believe what we believe.

Other than that everything is going well! The week was not super eventful but it was fun. 

Still crazy that Sarah is getting married. Be sure to send me a picture of the newlyweds at the reception! and one of my mission plaque when they have it ready!

That is so exciting that Cole got his Life Scout! Make sure to tell him that it is much easier to get his Eagle Scout while he is young and before he is driving and working! I miss the Friday Night Gridiron! Are you guys going to watch the game just to hear Cole in the band? That is awesome about Cole teaching the lesson. I am glad you guys all enjoyed his message. Having him and Jack teach lessons is important it will help them so much later and they can become such great teachers and spiritual giants that way. Tell Jack I am proud of his Regatta too!

Tell Cindy to have Landon email me. I dont have his email and I want to hear from him! Hows the home ward holding up? And bishop Wilson?

God lives and he blesses us all so much! I am about out of time for this week but I love you mom! Thanks for all the prayers!


Elder Solari