Monday, December 12, 2016

WEEK 64: HAPPY HALLOWEEN FROM ISLA SAN CRISTOBAL, GALAPAGOS


Flying into the new area!


10-31-16 Letter

I HAD CHANGES!! They called me Friday night and told me I was going to go serve in the Galapagos and I got here today at 12:30pm. I am so stoked to be here. So in the Galapagos the church is on two islands. Santa Cruz y San Cristobal. In Santa Cruz the church has a branch and there are 4 Elders and 2 sister missionaries, and its bigger for tourists, and the island is a little bigger as well. Here in San Cristobal its only us 2. Elder Davila and I. The WHOLE ISLAND is our sector. And it isnt even a branch..its just a little group!! He told me theres anywhere from like 30-40 people that go to church on Sundays. The island theres a little part where the airport is and people live and then the rest is the national park. We didnt have much time today but next Monday we are going to go check out the wildlife and the giant turtles and takes tons of pictures for you guys. 

So my flight left at 11:50 today and here in the islands its an hour behind normal Ecuador time..and they flew me out in first class! I think they bought the flight tickets last minute and its all there was so I ate a super good lunch in the plane and relaxed. The plane was literally full of gringo tourists. A bunch of old people it was pretty funny hearing them talk english and the way they all dressed reminded me of Dad hahaha. On the beaches here the water is super blue and clear it reminded me of that beach on Saint Marteens when we went on that cruise. I am super excited to be here!! Its the only sector in the whole mission where we get to baptise people IN THE OCEAN. So I am super motivated to get working when P day ends to find and teach those people! So the government permits people who arent residents to stay on the island for 2 or 3 months...and then they have to return to Ecuador. So hopefully Ill get to stay out here for the whole time.  

In other news Hugo and Xiomara are doing great! It was hard to have changes because theyre both so close to being baptised but keep praying for them please!! I know the Elders there will do great work with them.

No. I havent been in a zone or a district with Elder Barba or Elder Bolen..and sorry it might be kind of hard to get the soccer jerseys now but remind me in a couple of months. 

Doctrine and Covenants 133:8

8 Send forth the elders of my church unto the nations which are afar off; unto the islands of the sea; send forth unto foreign lands; call upon all nations, first upon the Gentiles, and then upon the Jews.
 But great are the promises of the Lord unto them who  are upon the isles of the sea; wherefore as it says isles,there must needs be more than this, and they are inhabited also by our brethren.


I love you guys!!! Pray that we can find many people to teach here on this island of the sea!!

WEEK 63: ECUADOR


Zone


Isabela baptism
10-24-16 Letter

So this last week we had another baptism here in Batallon. I honestly love this ward we have so much help here from the member and the leaders of the ward. I think I know why everyone in the mission always talks about this area and that its so blessed...We have been working with a less active family these last few weeks. Its the Rivas Carpio family and the mom and her oldest kid were less actives..and they have a daughter who had not been baptised because they fell away inactive for a time. So this last week we were able to reactivate them and Isabela, the daughter, was baptised! And now the mom has a calling in Relief Society, and Jordan, the son, is going to seminary! Honestly the best way to work here in Ecuador is with part member families and reactivating and baptising at the same time. It has helped my companions and I have success here in Ecuador. I love being able to help the Ecuatorianos find the join the true church. Now that they are going to be building another temple here in Ecuador everyone is anxious to help us in the work. 

This last week we also had Mission Leadership Council and its interesting to see that there are so many new leaders in the mission, and there are a bunch of new missionaries arriving to serve here. At the end of this transfer in 3 weeks 27 or so missionaries are going to get here. In the leadership council we talked a lot about 2 talks. From Elder Bednar, how to be a missionary according to Preach my Gospel, and from Elder Oaks, our message to the missionaries, taken from the worldwide broadcast to the missionaries this last January. President and Hna. Moreno are putting a big emphasis in this two talks and how we are going to use them and study them all our time here. We also changed District Meetings, which are now Fridays, and Weekly Planning, which takes place Tuesdays now. As well as this meeting Wednesday, Friday we had our MultiZone Conference with President Moreno so almost 2 days this week we didnt get to work in our sector at all. But it was great he taught us about the Doctrine of Christ in 2 Nefi 31 and I enjoyed it a bunch..was able to see Elder Bolen and Elder Barba from my district in the CCM. Elder Bolen is a ZL here in Guayaquil and Elder Barba is Presidents Secretary! So Ive got another hook up there in the mission office hahaha.  

So it looks like this next month we are going to have a visit from Elder Godoy who is the Area President of the missions here in Ecuador, Peru and Colombia. He will be here November 17th for Mission Leadership Council, and the 18th to visit all of the missionaries here in Guayaquil Sur. Its honestly going to be a great opportunity to be trained by a 70!

Yeah so here is a day in the life of a missionary here in Ecuador Guayaquil South Mission. So at 6.30 we wake up and do exercises for a half hour. Sometimes we go out and run, sometimes we go shoot hoops in the park or we lift weight because we have some dumbbells in the house. At 7 we shower, get ready for the day and eat breakfast. In the morning its usually hot bread we buy in a bakery close to our house and yogurt. At 8am we start personal study..ewhere we read the Book of Mormon for 30 minutes and and other half hour we study for our investigators and what we are going to teach in our lessons that day. At 9am we have companionship study and talked about what we learned for our investigators and do practices of what we are going to teach them. At 10am we have language study for an hour. Usually I study spanish for an hour but because I live in a house with 3 latinos I teach and help them with English, and we read the Book of Mormon in English together. At 11am we get everything ready, backpack, polished shoes, the million dollar hair part, and we leave to work. Sometimes we have appointments in the morning but if not we will go and contact, or find members that can go on visits with us later that day, or the two things. At 1pm we usually lunch and we eat a ton of rice, with some kind of hot soup and tuna or chicken or beef. Its pretty plain the food and we eat almost the same thing every day but I love it. Then from 2-9 we go teach the investigators we have with the members. Nicolas is a young men who is preparing for the mission who accompanies us a couple days a week, also Jhon and Erik go on visits with us usually, theyre also preparing for the mission. We usually have appointments, and if we dont, we will go contact referrals that we have or go teach some less actives and recent converts. Almost every day we find new people to teach whether its someone we talk to in the street or a referral from a member. So we are always weeding through the people that are truly interested and those that arent. And if we are lucky someone will invite us to have dinner with them! (rare) But usually there isnt time to eat so we just keep working until 9pm. At 9 we are back in the house and we plan for the day until 9.30. And from 9.30 until 10.30 when we go to bed we usually call some companionships in the zone and verify how theyre doing and who theyre teaching and we do everything in our power to help them and their investigators. And then we go to bed, wake up and repeat!😀

Right now we are teaching 2 people that are super solid to be baptised this coming month. Xiomara Rodrigues, cousin of a member, and Hugo Macias who works with our stake President. Theyre both progressing and coming to church and the activities so it is only a matter of time! The most important thing is that they are both reading the Book of Mormon so their conversion will come pretty quickly! If you guys could pray for them that would be great!!


Another cool thing this last week. So Ecuador like 20 or so years ago had their own currency called sucres. I was able to get a couple of the bills from some members last week theyre super cool Ill see if I can get a picture. 

WEEK 62: HE WAS BAPTIZED!!


Jonathan baptism


Baptism with Elder Paim
10-17-16 Letter

Hey everyone! I have some super great news! After being here in Batallon for almost 3 and a half months and teaching Jonathan for that whole time....He was baptised this last Saturday! I cant describe how I felt that night being able to see someone we have taught for long enter into the water to be baptised! The service was great we filled the baptism room because he already knows so many of the members of the ward. And yes almost all of the YSA went and they sang a special musical number. He asked for Elder Paim to baptise him so the APs came to the service as well. I know hes going to stay strong in the church and his MOM came to the baptism. And it opened the doors and now we are teaching her as well her name is Blanca. This last week not a whole lot happened...just getting ready for the baptism and knocking doors and finding a bunch of new people to teach. 

I honestly feel like the more time I have in the mission...the less time I have to write you guys haha we are keeping super busy right now. We have just been working a lot. We have been working a bunch with references and contacting in the street. Well I love you guys a bunch take care! Ill put a few pictures from the baptism. 


As far as some things Id like for christmas are tie clips...Like a bunch of cool ones with temples,..like the Portland Temple and whatever other ones you can find, and in different colors. Thats tough to hear about the Giants but next year we can get it! 

WEEK 61: + PICTURES


Jonathan with trio of missionaries


Apartment missionaries
10-10-16 Letter

Well this last week we have been working in a trio so it has been pretty fun! Its reminded me a little bit of our experience in the MTC in the trio with Elder Barba and Elder Sheppard..but we really have been exploding finding a bunch of new people to teach. The mission keeps changing. A couple of weeks ago we had zone meetings every Saturday but now we are going to have them once a month and theyre going to be Zone Training Meetings. So its kinda nice for us because we dont have to plan meetings every weekend but I kinda miss it getting the whole zone together every weekend. But we do still have normal district meetings every Tuesday so thats going fine. Another change that is going on is Friday Elder Erickson is flying home. We always got along so well hes such a funny guy. So Ill be here working with Elder Terrones in our sector..he has 19 months in the mission so this might be his last sector. 

We have Jonathans baptism scheduled for this Saturday! Its finally here and he is super excited for his baptism it is honestly going to be great. I have been teaching him here for over 3 months and I feel so blessed to be here for his baptism. We have been working hard to get everything ready for him and for this Saturday. We are going to have all the YSA there to support him in his baptism.


Dont worry Ill keep praying for the Giants. EVEN YEAR MAGIC. And Ive been trying to write Hannah but she hasnt written me since August so thats one thing haha. I love you guys dont forget to do your Family Home Evening. Until next week!

WEEK 60: CONFERENCIA GENERAL 186

10-3-16 Letter

I feel spiritually uplifted after being able to watch and listen to 10 hours of conference this last weekend! We didnt even leave the stake center during the day...only at night to go back and sleep and wake up and get out there again! So before with Pte. Torres we could only go to conference if we had investigators...but with Pte. Moreno it was a rule that we had to go to all of the sessions si o si!!! (mission slang) I enjoyed just about every minute of it. But one of the things most relevant to the church here in Ecuador was Jeffrey R. Hollands talk in the priesthood session about home teachers. Here we call that talk a ´´machete´´ or that he basically told everyone what they were doing wrong and how they can fix it which was a much needed talk. Its honestly one of the things different our church does...visiting every member home at least once a month to be able to help the families and so that they can have support from the ward family and everything they need. We are definitely going to be referring to this talk a lot here in our mission and in our ward. Another talk I really enjoyed was that of Elder Rasband about faith and K Brett Nattress about the Book of Mormon and families. 

This last week we also had a baptism!! Fabricio Andrade is another child of God that made the decision to be baptised and thats how it went! It was a great service...we did it after the afternoon session Saturday and a ton of members went to support and help him. The ward where we baptized him hasnt had missionaries for a little while but tomorrow they will have missionaries there because today arrived 18 new missionaries to the mision! So as of right now I am in a trio because Elder Erickson goes home next week...so my new companion is Elder Terrones! He is from Peru, and has like 20 months in the mission and has already been to The Galapagos Islands!


Yes Jonathan committed to being baptised this weekend if he receives his answer he has been praying for so keep him in your prayers please! I know he will be able to get his answer if you guys can help! Sorry I havent been able to send that many pictures Ill try to get some sent next week! Love you guys!

WEEK 59: MILAGROS

9-26-16 Letter

Well this last week was full of miracles here in our sector! So general conference is coming up this week and its the best time of the year to bring investigators to church and have them feel the spirit listening to the Prophet and the Twelve. So this last week we have focused on finding new people to bring to conference and prepare to be baptised!! So we were able to find a few...

This last week we got a reference from a RM in our ward...and it turns out its his girlfriend and they want to get married and she wants to get married in the temple so when we got to his house she was basically asking us when she could get baptised. Her name is Jennifer and if everything goes well she is going to get baptised this weekend! She came to church yesterday and met the bishop and the members and loved it. We had a super powerful experience this last week teaching her. The first lesson we taught is the restoration and we felt the spirit super powerfully. She told us that a couple of years ago she prayed and had that same exact experience and feeling as when we were teaching her and talking about The Book of Mormon. I love being able to teach and testify about the Book of Mormon because it is the keystone of our church and religion. Its also the key to a real conversion.

So another is a reference from  Hno. Najera that always goes on visits with us. So he has a niece that lives with them that we thought was a member but turns out she isnt...so this next week she is going to be baptised too because she had already been going to church for over a month before they even told us! Her name is Karla and she already has a ton of friends in church and when we invited her to be baptised she said ´´YES I have been waiting for you guys to ask me!´´ And she is going to be baptised for general conference as well. She is super excited and the ward is super excited to be able to have more members and converts in the church!

We are also going to have another baptism in La Isla Trinitaria because right now the sector is closed and there are not Elders. But my companion served there so we have been working there a little bit just to finish up the program they had. His name is Fabricio and his story is super cool. So his brother got in a super bad car wreck and he promised God that if his brother got better(and he did) that he would find Him and go to church...and thats when we found him! He is super stoked for his baptism and he gets along super well with the members...He is super convert and cant wait for his baptism!!

Also Jonathan is super super close and fasted this last weekend to see if he should be baptised for conference...and we have an appointment with him tomorrow so pray for him please!!

And tomorrow we have Mission Leadership council so that should be exciting.

Romanos 1.16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek.

 I just wanted to share with you guys a scripture that I have been thinking about a lot this week.. I have learned so much about sharing the gospel on my mission...I have grown so much. And I can honestly say that I feel this same way...we all should. I have learned not to fear sharing the gospel with anyone because its our responsibility as followers of Christ. The worst thing that can happen is that they will say no and then we can share this gospel with the next one! I challenge you guys to share the gospel with someone new this week! I love you guys a ton!

(I left my camera in the house this week)

      Elder Solari

WEEK 58: THE MISH

9-19-26 Letter

Well this last week was super good! We just focused on finding new people and doing splits to help the other Elders in the zone. It has been a pretty successful week and Elder Erickson and I work really well together! Hes from Ogden, Utah and Ill be with him for the next 3 weeks until he goes back. Its been super fun to be with another gringo for the first time in a long time. 

Our ward here is great. Its the strongest wards Ive been in, I think its the biggest in our mission. Most have had like 80-100 people going every Sunday but this last week we almost broke 200 people in church..and the chapel is relatively small so there isnt much room to put more people so I dont know how we are going to be able to do it! But we work a ton with the members. This last week in Ward council we got 6 references from members and they are taking us this week to introduce us to their friends, families and neighbors. 

As far as Andersons family, they were not able to come to church this last week because they work in events and had gotten home at 8:30am after working all night long. But dont worry they are still super excited to come to church and prepare for their baptisms for this next month!

I feel like the mission and the Elders here in the mission have changed a lot. I feel like some of the Elders here in our zone dont want to be here..they are just trying to stick it out until the end of the mission and it makes me sad. As a zone leader I have really been able to know all of the elders here and have been able to see their desires and their drive and what they want to accomplish. And we are trying to do everything we can to help them so they can keep going strong but sometimes its hard..but I know the Lord blesses us as we try to motivate and inspire the other Elders here in the zone.

Well I dont have a bunch of time but I wanted to share a couple of verses with you guys. Alma 29.1-4

 O that I were an angel, and could have the wish of mineheart, that I might go forth and speak with the trump ofGod, with a voice to shake the earth, and cry repentance unto every people! Yea, I would declare unto every soul, as with the voiceof thunder, repentance and the plan of redemption, thatthey should repent and come unto our God, that theremight not be more sorrow upon all the face of the earth. But behold, I am a man, and do sin in my wish; for Iought to be content with the things which the Lord hath allotted unto me.I ought not to harrow up in my desires the firm decreeof a just God, for I know that he granteth unto men according to their desire, whether it be unto death or untolife; yea, I know that he allotteth unto men, yea, decreeth unto them decrees which are unalterable, according to their wills, whether they be unto salvation or unto destruction.

This is one of my favorite parts in the Book of Mormon and I know what it says is true. I am so grateful to be here in the mission and fulfilling my dream..and being in the mission has really made me understand this scripture more. God does give us according to our desires. We all have our agency, and part of our mission here on earth is to use it wisely to make right decisions. And with our agency we have to do good to serve all others in every way possible. We have to take advantage of every moment we have so that the Lord can bless us and help us grow and change. I love you guys a ton!

      Elder Solari

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

WEEK 57: 13 Month Transfers

 Martha and Bryan baptism

 Isla Triniteria

Najera family

9-12-16 Letter

Well this week there are transfers. Elder Paim is being changed to Centenario, Centenario and is going to be the new Assistant! He is going to be working a lot in the mission office. Super exciting. I am also going to be getting a new companion, Elder Erickson, and I am going to train him to be a Zone Leader! Hes from Utah and he is going to finish his mission in about a month so in mission terms ´I´m going to kill him´ Im grateful for this chance to train and help him to finish his mission strong. Well another thing that is happening in the Zone...they are going to take out the missionaries de Isla Trinitaria so for awhile we are only going to have 10 Elders here in the zone. I think its only going to be for a few months because next month arrive 18 missionaries and in November arrive 24 missionaries so we are going to be opening a ton of new sectors. So I spent 2 days last week in Isla Trinitaria to know the area and meet the people the Elders have been teaching so we are going to be working a little bit more in this sector as well...

So Sunday after church we went so Elder Paim could say goodbye to a bunch of the families of the ward..and every house we went to gave us a ton of food to eat..like I was probably offered atleast 5 pounds of rice, and so many postrys but it was awesome haha. 


OH GUESS WHAT! Martha and Bryan were baptised and confirmed members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints yesterday! Funny story...so we had postponed their baptism for this week but Friday they called us and informed us that Elder Paim was going to have transfers..so we told them Friday so it wouldnt surprise them and the mom told us si o si that Elder Paim had to be there for the baptism so we baptised them after church! It was a great baptism service..Tons of members went, we bought a cake and cola, and even some friends of them that arent members went so we are going to start teaching them as well! Im so happy I could help this whole family be baptised..First Anthony and then his mom and brother! I love being able to serve the Lord in this capacity and I know that He makes this conversion process possible for everyone we teach. Something Hna. Martha shared in her testimony is that when we met them and started teaching them the family was destroyed, there wasnt any unity or love in their home. And she said that now the family is whole different, that the Lord has unified the family and made them whole. I love that so much because its true. This Gospel helps families, and every kind of problem they can have because the Church focuses in the family..its the most important thing that God has given us so that we can progress and learn and become better people. 

WEEK 56: HOLA!

 Andersson and parents with Elders

 Elders with Bro. Moreda

Painting a door

9-5-16 Letter

Well this last week was great! Ive already got 2 months here in Batallon and I feel like I finally know the sector and how to get around and get to the members houses. As far as progressing investigators were still teaching the Hurtados and the Vazquez family, and Jugo and we picked up teaching Jonathan again! So Martha and Bryan didnt come to church this last week so we are probably going to postpone their baptism for another week or so, they were sick and didnt want to get up early. But they are still reading and praying and going to the activities so were excited for them. Also Andersson´s family came to church this last week, both of his parents! His dad didnt have to work so he was able to come as well and they had a great experience. We visit them like every other day during the week and he is a chef so he always cooks super good food for us! This last week he did a pasta alfredo with chicken and a salad and rice.(Picture included) It was amazing. The mom introduced us to her family that lives next door so now we are teaching them as well and they are progressing! Honestly, almost all the references we get are from investigators and theyre always golden investigators so we are working with them now as well. One thing that we have been doing again to find new people to teach is that we are giving english and portguese classes and it has been working a lot as well. The people love being able to learn little things to say in other languages. Its another way we have been having success. 

Another cool thing that happened this week. Tuesday we did splits so Elder Paim could do a baptismal interview. So we get to the house of the Vazquez family for our appointment and they cooked a HUGE dinner for us, which is weird because here lunch is the big meal. So she cooked us rice and beans with fried chicken. Here its called arroz con menestra y pollo broster. And of course the ´´medicine´´ Coca Cola´´ It was funny because it was Elder Sandovals birthday so we told him we had planned it for his special day.ll send some pictures dont worry. So this plate is what they eat here almost every single day but I love it...I am defintiely going to bring it to the states with me. 

This last week we had another meeting with President Moreno and our Stake President, President Caza. We were able to talk with them about each ward and its challenges and strengths to try to help them improve. The mission is focusing a lot now on service. We are implementing plans in our zone to do bigger service projects every week for people that live here in the stake, and we are trying to get everyone involved. Its one of the things different about our church, we are so service orientated, and I know its going to help us share the gospel in positive way. Another cool thing is that President Caza told President Moreno to send us to the Galapagos because we are working super hard so look out we might be going soon! 

Yes we got the water issue fixed in the apartment so now we are living great and the apartment is clean again. I am relieved we dont have to change houses because it gets in the way of our work time!

Well thats about all the time ive got so here are some pictures for you! Love you mom!

WEEK 55: PAYASOS

Payasos = Clowns

8-29-16 Letter

This last week was great! We have been working super hard with the ward directory trying to get around and meet ALL the members, actives and inactives. We still have another 15 pages to go in the directory but its been a good start! We have been able to find some super cool families less actives that we are bringing back to church..and we have also been able to find some new people to teach! One his name is Hugo, and his younger brothers are less actives, but he hasnt been baptised. We met him because he started working in the Stake Presidents store so we are already teaching him! And he went to church yesterday so he preparing for his baptism in about a month! As far Anthonys family, they came to church yesterday and are going to be baptised not this weekend, but next week! So pray for them a lot please! Martha and Bryan Vazquez. Anderssons family is doing well, the mom is progressing a lot more than the Dad because sometimes he has to work Sundays. But they are both doing well, they are reading the Book of Mormon together and praying together and going to church so its only a matter of time! They dont like feeling pressured so we arent trying to rush anything with them but they do have a baptismal date for the end of this month! 

Another thing thats been going on this week is that we havent had any running water in the house almost the whole week! So we have been taking showers at the other Elders house every morning. And today marks the search for a new apartment here in Guayaquil! Wish us luck! I have also been using the same clothes for 3 days because we havent had water to wash them haha thought Id give you guys an update! I love Guayaquil! But honestly other than the water situation thing everything here is going great!!!

I read this super cool talk by James E Faust this last week. Titled 10 things I want my grandkids to know before they go on a mission. It was great. One of the points I loved is that it said the key to missionary work is the effort we put in. You dont need to know all the scriptures, you dont need to be brilliant, you dont need to only focus in baptisms. We just have to give our best and take advantage of every moment we have to share the gospel. And this doesnt only apply to full time missionaries...it also applies to the members of the church! I dont know how to change this to English but one quote from the talk was ´´Lo que produce la conversion es la verdad simple y pura que el espiritu confirma, cuando va acompanado del testimonio de un humilde siervo del Senor´´ I invite you guys to read the talk!! Especially anybody that is preparing to go out on the mission field or has the desire to accept the call to serve. 

I took more money out this week because I found a place that can do adjustments in the shirts I have so you guys dont have to send me more shirts. The shoes are all holding up great! And for your questions Im not sure..all I know is contacts here are super expensive and hard to find but Ill try and see what I can do. 


I love you guys!

WEEK 54: HOT AND SUNNY

 Elders with new member Andersson!!

 Guayaquil Temple



8-22-16 Letter

We have great news! Anthonys whole family came to church yesterday for the first time! I finally see them super excited to follow in his footsteps and be baptised! Things are going so good they even invited us to dinner tonight! We have had some awesome lessons with them this last week...they already have all the missionary lessons so we are sharing and reading a lot in the Book of Mormon with them. Its honestly the key in missionary work. If the investigators really read and meditate on what they are reading in the Book of Mormon, they will be able to know its true. Its one of the most important things I've learned here in the mission field. And I know it can work with Dad so start reading the Book of Mormon with him!

Its going great as a zone leader right now. I do love the opportunity to work more closely with all of the Elders here in the Zone. We try to do divisions with a couple companships every week to train them and know who they are teaching. A really cool opportunity that we have as Zone Leaders is that we also work a lot with the Stake President and the High Council I think its called in english? More than anything we do our best to lead through example..sure sometimes its hard but its rewarding because I am learning a lot more about myself and how to be a leader. And when there are companionships that dont get along we do everything we can to help them out..and this last week there were emergency transfers and we got another new Elder here. But every Saturday we have Zone meetings with just our zone and we get to train them and help them get better in teaching and finding situations...I love it!

One thing kinda weird but funny that is part of the culture here... Los Ecuatorianos dont like committing to anything! So we always invite everyone we talk to church on Sunday, and tons of people to be baptised...But the majority of them reply with 'Si Dios lo permite, me voy domingo.'' Which means to say ' If God wants me to go, Ill be there.'' And its funny because of course God wants you to go to church and keep his commandments!!! Sometimes its a struggle because they also use it as a polite way to say no because another thing... Ecuatorianos dont like being rude so they always beat around the bush with things. I honestly think its better to just say No because then we know not to waste our time with some people we teach hahaha.

We also went to the temple last week!!! So we took some cool pictures. Also we are working with Anderssons family and they are preparing to get baptised next month! Pray for them please! I love you guys my time is up!


Monday, August 22, 2016

WEEK 53: 1 ANO




8/15/16 Letter

Bueno familia para celebrar un año voy a escribir toda la carta en Español jaja..no just kidding dont worry haha. 

This last week has been a blast. We keep working hard and finding new people to teach, this last week we focused a little bit more on less actives. Here in Batallon we have 762 members and only about 220 or so go to church every sunday. So we are trying to meet and know as many of them as we can so we can help strengthen the ward even more. It also helps us to find part member families (like ours) so we can get them to the temple and get the kids on missions! And about your question mom yes we have worked with families like ours..where everyone is a member and all the kids go on missions but the dad isnt a member. We are also working with one right now, the Bermejo family where the Dad is a less active who served a mission like 10 years ago and his wife is not a member. We actually see it a lot out here and it always makes me think about Dad and all the times missionaries would come over and teach him and have dinner. I know one day we´´ll get him!

In other news..we had a baptism this last week! Anthony! We have been teaching him for almost a month. Funny story how we found him..he had been going to seminary every night for weeks before the teacher told us he wasnt a member..he was super prepared because he already knew all the youth and we baptised him Saturday at noon! It was special because we have been teaching his mom and his brothers at the same time but they havent been able to come to church yet(Theyre not early risers). But they were able to make it for the baptism! His brothers names are Moises and Ezequiel, and his moms name is Martha so pray for them please! Another thing about the baptism is that the ward helped us buy a cake for the baptism so that was cool! And the confirmation went well Sunday as well.
Anyways thats all the time Ive got. I love you guys and I love this work! Remember that every only fo you guys are missionaries too and should share the gospel with all the people you meet! And if you have a question...ASK THE MISSIONARIES. 

I love you guys!


      Elder Solari

WEEK 52: LEADERSHIP COUNCIL

 So heres a picture of almost the whole zone, one mission one companionship. (starting on the left side of the table) Elder Fourcade, Elder Vargas, Elder Munoz, Elder Benites, Elder Sandoval, your favorite Elder, Elder Milne, Elder Barnum, Elder Prado and Elder Paim mi compa.

 Ready for the first time to play sports in over a year..sock and short game on point😏


The District with the ZLs

8/8/16 Letter

Well family and friends...this last week the mission changed a lot. We had our first leadership council with President Moreno and all the Zone Leaders in the mission here in Guayaquil..it was an awesome experience. Also being able to see there are a ton of new leaders here in the mission. So President told us that now we can play sports on PDAY for 2 hours and its limited to Basketball and Volleyball...so today we got together as a zone and had a blast playing basketball. I havent played in so long and I feel super sore but it was a great way to strengthen the unity in our zone. I feel like it helped out some of the Elders that have been stressed or that maybe dont get along too well with their companion. And after we played basketball we went and bought lunch too...Ill see if I can attach some pictures. Also another thing that changed is now with transfers they are going to give us a 3 day notice so we can have time to say goodbye to the members and to our converts and investigators. Before it was instantly...the APs would call us and tell us we had an hour to be in the bus terminal or our new sector..so thats a nice change as well. So with President Torres..he had some zones where he would send Elders to ´´punish´´ them(Like our zone)..and then he also had some sectors where he would send Elders to reward them( Galapagos, Santa Rosa, Huaquillas, etc.) But President Moreno has done away with this as well...Before it was only the Elders that baptised most that would go to the Galapagos but now hes sending missionarys there for revelation which is a lot better. One change that is a little sad is that when the new missionaries finish their 12 week program there isnt going to be a test for the mission pin..as a matter of fact they have done away with it completely. They dont even sell them anymore in the office, and he is not going to keep the hymn President Torres wrote as our mission hymn. Another thing that is cool is that we do not have to go to the office Mondays so we have more time to enjoy our PDAY. Really the mission has changed a lot, the APs arent stressed like they always used to be, they dont give as many machetes hahaha. Also we can go to the temple every 3 months! So we are already planning a trip to go as a zone this month!

So last week in the letter home I talked about Jonathan a little and he is struggling...he didnt come to church this last week and isnt answering our calls so we are thinking about dropping him for a little while to see what happens. But keep praying for him! These last couple of weeks we have been teaching a kid named Anthony who is 15 years old. He had been going to seminary for almost 3 weeks before the members told us he wasnt a member.. they just all supposed he was. So he is going to be baptised this week! And we are preparing his mom, Martha, and his brother Bryan for a later date to be baptised! So if you guys could pray for them that would be awesome!

Moses 1:39
39 For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring topass the immortality and eternal life of man.

Alma 12:24
 24 And we see that death comes upon mankind, yea, thedeath which has been spoken of by Amulek, which is thetemporal death; nevertheless there was a space grantedunto man in which he might repent; therefore this lifebecame a probationary state; a time to prepare to meetGod; a time to prepare for that endless state which hasbeen spoken of by us, which is after the resurrection of the dead.

So I have been pondering on these 2 scriptures a lot this last week... I feel like it really explains my purpose as a missionary. The first explaining the final goal, and what we need to do or share with the people here so that they can achieve it. I know that as missionaries we Teach Repentance and Baptism converts. And its so important...now every single day we invite people to repent so that they can be ready to meet God..and a lot of people dont want to humble themselves and do it but there are few people that do want to repent and progress. And I know that its these people that will be saved and that can have their eternal family after this life. And I know my role as a missionary what I have to do is invite everyone to change their lives...and I love it! Because every has their agency and we work with those select few that are ready to change their lives. I love this gospel it really has changed my life!

I love you guys!

      Elder Solari




WEEK 51: TEACHINGS OF THE PROPHETS

8/1/16 Letter

Thats awesome everyone was there for the baby blessing! Baby Griffin definitely looks a lot like Caitlin haha I love getting the pictures of everyone! Looks like you guys are enjoying it there in Portland and to be united with Dad again is sweet! Keep sending more pictures!

Well this last week was interesting! My companion has been sick almost all week so we havent been able to work a whole lot! He ate something funny and had some kind of infection in his stomach or intestines...but dont worry he feels a lot better now! 

Our missionary handbook tells us that we should study teachings of the Prophets to learn how to be a leader...so recently I have been studying teaching of Joseph Smith. I am in chapter 34 and loving every single page. It has really made me reflection a lot about a leader and how they lead through example. As I study this book I want more and more to be the think of leader that Joseph Smith was. To always be an example even in the worst circumstances..to be worthy to receive the spirits guide in the exact moment I need it.  It has definitely been a humbling experience for me so far and I feel so grateful to be able to develop more of Christ attributes in my character. 

We are teaching a young adult named Jonathan, not sure if I have already told you guys about him, but we need you guys to pray for him! Yes he keeps progressing and his baptism date is coming up but we think he is still having some challenges! We have had some super good lessons with him this last week...we watched the video of the Restoration and of John Tanner. His family is really the problem with his progress, they dont support him but he wants to do it. He also has a fear of the trials that are going to come later in his life if he is baptised...but we are teaching him and are going to keep helping him so he can get baptised!

Another thing that happened this week...so as ZL we have a monthly meeting with an Area 70, President Moreno and our Stake President, President Caza. It was an amazing experience. Only us 5 and we had a conference talking about the recent converts here in the Cisne stake. And it was in the Kennedy which is one of the biggest church here in Ecuador, by University of Guayaquil. We were able to talk about the progress of our work and our labors with a member of the 70, Elder Alvarez, and ask for advice and council for him on how we can work better with the members and the stake leaders. He shared so many cool stories from his life on his mission, as a bishop and a stake president. He shared with us that his Dad found out he was leaving on the mission the day before he had to report..and that they locked him in his room on the 4th story and he scaped tying together bed sheets to leave on his mission! Its so crazy all of the opposition we face when we are trying to do the good things in our lives! And where we can end up when we put the Lord first, and serve him with all our mind, might heart and strength. I    am honestly so happy to lose myself in so great a cause!! I love you guys!

The cyber is full of virus so I havent been able to send photos! Ill try to do it soon!

      Elder Solari

WEEK 50: ZL LIFE IN GUAYAQUIL

7/25/16 Letter

Bueno family this last week has been great! There have been some changes here in the Zone so I will not have a lot of time to write you guys because we have to go to the Bus terminal to pick up some Elders that are moving in to our house.

I just want to let you guys know that everything is going great out here! We are working super hard and the mission has changed a whole lot with President Moreno, he is now allowing some sports like Basketball and Ultimate Frisbee so its definitely changing. As far as this last week we found a new family to teach and we are preparing them to be baptised. I love this work and I love every opportunity to talk with everyone we see! And I have learned to love studying the scriptures every day. The hour of personal study in the morning is honestly my favorite part, it helps me to start the day out strong and with the spirit! Also this next week we will be having our first leadership council in the mission which is when all the zone leaders and the Hermana leaders get together for a conference with President, so I am sure he is going to keep changing things about the mission. I honestly like some of the changes, sure its going to take some time to get used to but I know its for the better. I tried to attach some photos, but the viruses stole them...maybe next week! Love you guys!


      Elder Solari

WEEK 49: 11 MONTHS




7/18/16 Letter

Well this last week I completed 11 months in the mision! Its crazy how fast the time flies!

These last weeks we have been working with a college student named Andersson..and yesterday he was baptised and confirmed a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints! His story is super cool. So the missionaries found him here about 2 months ago. So he is honestly one of the greatest guys I have had the opportunity to teach here in the mission. He has had some huge desires to change his life and enter in this path. So about 2 months ago he didnt believe in God, or Jesus Christ, and he has been going to church since then and strengthening his testimony! He has had some difficulties because he told us like a year ago he was working trying to make more people become atheist, and since then he has been able to share his experience with all of them and mend what he had done. He has already read half of the Book of Mormon, he has 21 years old and is already committed to go on the mission this next year! He wants to be able to help and share this message with everyone, especially people that have this same struggle he did. Another great thing is that his family who did not want to participate in the lessons went to his baptism and stayed for church! So now we are working with his parents as well so they can be baptised! 

To answer your questions, yes President Moreno brought two kids with him. I think he has 5 but the other 3 are married and have their families. His wife is really cool too. She is always there in the zone conferences with President Moreno and always shares a message too. Which is pretty different from President Torres, because I had only seen Hermana Torres maybe 2 times. We had our first multi zone conference with President Moreno this last week! It was a super great experience. 

A cool experience we had this last week, were teaching another college student his name is Jonathan Santana, hes 20 years old. So like a week ago Elder Paim and I received revelation that the key to him being baptised is Andersson. So last night we went to visit him with Andersson, because as a member he can now go on visits with us, and we had one of the most powerful and spiritual lessons I have ever felt. And Andersson basically gave the whole lesson to him. He told us that his baptism date is going to be really soon...it was an out of this world experience to see our convert that was baptised yesterday, to have such an impact on someone we have been teaching. They both have grown so much...and Jonathan doesnt have a lot of support from his family so I want to ask you guys to pray for him please!!

 27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them theirweakness. I give unto men weakness that they may be humble; and my grace is sufficient for all men that humble themselves before me; for if they humble themselves before me, and have faith in me, then will I make weak things become strong unto them.

This scripture really speaks to me. It has helped me to learn so much here in the mission. I know it is true and applies to everyone. I want you guys to ponder this scripture this week, and ask the Lord so that He can help you progress. I love you guys! 

      Elder Solari

WEEK 48: TRANSFERS - NEW DAD - TOMLINSON HOME




7/11/16 Letter

Wow family this last week was great. First of all I got transferred! So I am now serving in the Cisne stake. Its in Guayaquil and I am in The Batallon ward (Batallon means ´´to battle´´) But thats not all! This zone has a history. It is the most dangerous of all the areas in the mission! But dont worry we are all doing just fine here. Its located in a part of Guayaquil called The Trinity Island. Im sure you guys can look it up on google and read all sorts of great things. But I honestly love it here so far. The ward is HUGE. There were 200 people in church on Sunday, its the biggest ward Ive been in here in the mission. And the members are all willing to help give references and visit our investigators and bring them to church so it lightens our load a lot!

So when they called me last Monday night they told me I would be training an Elder in his 12 week program because his trainer finished his mission. So I packed up everything and was all ready to do. So when the Elders got at our house to pick me up they told me that the plans had changed. So I was called to be a ZONE LEADER here in Cisne. I honestly feel super humble to be able to serve in such a capacity here in the mission. I remember when I was a new Elder and the impact my Zone Leaders had on me. I hope to be able to have the same impact on the Elders here in Cisne. In the Zone there are 12 Elders and 6 wards. So Cisne is known for another thing. Its where President sends all of the disobedient Elders so they can learn to be obedient and work hard and diligently. So in the 5 other companionships there are 5 really great missionaries and they are working with and helping 5 other missionarys to progress and change. So I feel like it is going to be a little bit of a challenge but so rewarding to be able to help these Elders. Another thing about being Zone Leaders is that we give the reports directly to the APs every night, so we work with them a lot and they come out and go on divisions and interchanges with us, and train us. 

So this last week President Moreno came to our church here in Batallon to give a baptism interview in person for one of the sectors in the Zone! And we were talking to him and he is honestly such a spiritual guy! So Friday we got to go to the office and have Interviews with him first individually and then together as Zone Leaders. He told us that we were the first missionaries he has interviewed here in the mission and was very impressed.  He informed us about a bunch of new rules he is putting in and going to put in. He is so very different from President Torres but I know he is going to do such a great job. He might even be allowing sports so Ill let you guys know soon! So when we were in the office of the mission that day so were the 14 elders who are finishing their missions. So they ALL missed their flight home in the morning due to a mistake with their passports so they were stuck in the office all day trying to find last minute flights to get them home before their homecoming talks Sunday. And Elder Tomlinson my trainer was there. The first thing he told me was ´´Im not dead yet´´ So it was super funny to see him. He is going to be out studying at BYU and I was able to say goodbye to a lot of the Elders I served with.

So my new companion is Elder Paim. He is the only Brasilian in the mission and he is the funniest guy ever. We spend the whole day working and laughing as we go. He came here only knowing Portugese so we both have had to learn Spanish. Before his mission he served in the Army in Brazil so I think thats why they sent him here to serve in Cisne. This guy doesnt fear ANYTHING. But so many funny things have happened to us this last week. I also had the opportunity to give baptism interviews this last week so that was a great experience as well.

This last week we worked hard on teaching investigators. This ward already has a huge program so we are working on growing it and helping all of them to progress. I am also trying to learn this huge sector quickly because I dont know for how much time Elder Paim will be here. For Pday in Guayaquil all the Zone Leaders go to the office in the morning to bring Baptism registrys, totals from last week and goals for this week for each misionary in the Zone. And then we went to print out the emails, buy from the store and then we always come back and cook lunch, clean and house and sleep. Its been a pretty laid back day but I am ready to start the week and start working! 

Also, if you guys could keep praying for Sandra Vera and the Alay family. My ZL from Centenario told me they are having a hard time and now dont even want to receive the Elders there because we both left so fast. So please keep praying for them so they can open their hearts again to the Gospel! 

 17 And behold, I tell you these things that ye may learnwisdom; that ye may learn that when ye are in the service of your fellow beings ye are only in the service of your God.  

I know that what this scripture shares is true. If we want someone to feel Christs love we need to serve them. I know that as we serve others we can learn to love them, and sharing the Gospel with others is the best way that you guys can serve the Lord. I love you guys and am praying for you always. Remember to choose the right and The Lord will bless you.

      Elder Solari

Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

WEEK 47: PRESIDENTE MORENO AND JULY 4TH

7/4/16 Letter

Happy 4th of July! Today I celebrated wearing my US Flag tie! Hope you guys are all blowing things up and eating BBQ today! 

This last week President Torres left and President Moreno got in Tuesday. So Wednesday all of the missionaries in Guayaquil got together to have a quick conference with him. He is a really powerful guy, with a super strong testimony. Also, he doesnt know any English but him and his family are now starting to learn it haha. So far we havent seen any big changes on how he runs the mission. Because when the new President arrived the APs just kept running things how they did with President Torres. I am sure in the next month or two we will see some changes. One thing that changed is what we report every night to our leaders. So every night I call the missionaries in my district and take a report of what they did that day. So then I give the report to the Zone Leaders and they give it to the APs. So they just changed some of the number we report. I feel like the new President is going to be just as strict which is what I had hoped for. I will miss President Torres...He has been great to have leading this mission but I know President Moreno is the guy to replace him and lead the mission these next 3 years. 

So everything is going great with my new companion, Elder Rios. He came from the Office he was one of the Secretaries that types up all the documents and baptism forms. So we get along super well. He has been a great companion this last week and we have been working super hard. Its funny because almost all of the Elders from Peru are the same, they act the same, look the same and work the same. He is a lot like one of my past companions, Elder Diaz. So a couple of our investigators were super sad that Elder Egoavil had changes. This last Tuesday some of them cried because he left...so we have been working to help them understand more of what we do as missionaries and how our time is limited in any given sector. 

Yes Sandra and the Alay family are still progressing. They have a baptism date for 2 weeks out and we are doing everything possible to help them keep progressing. We visit most of our investigators every single day. It talks a lot in Preach My Gospel about contacting them every day and it has helped a lot to keep them strong and progressing. 

One of my favorite foods from here is called Encebollado. Its 100% Guayaco. Its pretty much just a fish soop with yuca potatoes...but it is super good. 

I know the Book of Mormon is true and that it is the only way we can become converted to this Gospel. I read it every single day and every single day my testimony grows. Its is the most correct book on this earth! You guys need to read it every single day! I love you guys!

PS Fotos coming soon.
      Elder Solari

Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur

WEEK 46: TRANSFERS

Sounds like you guys are enjoying the heat! I know I sure am. It gets up in the high 90s everyday here so you guys arent alone! Thats awesome that Hannah is in Bali! I definitely want to study abroad when I get back...Id really like to go to Jerusalem and walk the Holy Lands. And yes I did get the Vitamin C. I only asked because I heard the office always looks through the package to take games and things out but none of that was in the package so all is well! So more than taking names to the temple I have been working on familysearch.org. You should go on and look...I was able to find a lot of Dads side of the family because your side goes back to the 1500s. 

So like the title of my letter, my companion had transfers. Elder Egoavil is now in the 25th of July ward where I served almost 3 months ago. So I sent him with some things to send to the members and photos with our converts! My new companion is Elder Rios and he is from my group but went to the MTC in Colombia. He is from Peru and he should be getting here soon. Ill be in a trio with our ZLs until he arrives. So now I only have to wait! This last week we also went on Divisons with the APs so that was cool as well. And the districts were changed so now only the Hermanas (Mission Nurses) are in my district.  

President Moreno gets here tomorrow and President Torres leaves tomorrow! 

So this last Sunday we brought a couple families to church so it has been awesome. We have been teaching up a storm and basically running around the sector all day to have time to talk with and teach everyone. So for awhile we have been teaching a hermana named Sandra Vera. She was finally able to come to church today which was awesome. And she brought all of her neighbors to church as well! So we are preparing them all for baptisms in the next coming weeks. Its been a great experience teaching and helping her. Our first contact we knocked on her door. And we were talking and talking with her and she told us that we have the best church in the whole world! It really stood out to me. Thats when we knew we had to keep working with her. We usually meet with Sandra and her friends every night at like 7PM. And they always prepare food for us. So her neighbors are the Alay family...its a HUGE family and we are teaching all of them. 

The lessons here go really great. One of the tough things is that the literacy here isnt very high so we teach a lot with the picture book and we teach very simply. We usually always teach Dia De Reposo or keeping the sabbath day holy with an invite to come to church. Another thing we always do is the first contact with a person we always invite them to be baptized. So we study a lot to be prepared for questions, doubts, rejections to help them see the importance of being baptised like Jesus Christ. Because the majority of the people here are Catholic and have not read even a page of the Bible. So we always carry the Bible and the Triple Combination, and atleast 20 of the lesson pamphlets we always give out. This last Wednesday we gave out 8 copies of the Book of Mormon to our investigators! The work really is going so well down here. I feel so grateful to be able to participate in this great work.    

Thats about all the time Ive got..but I am excited to meet President Moreno!

I know that families can be together forever thanks to Christ and His sacrifice. We study it, we love it and we preach it every single day! Reach out to someone in need and share the gospel with somebody new. I love you guys!

      Elder Solari
Misión Ecuador Guayaquil Sur


WEEK 45: TEMPLE



6-20-16 Letter

So this week we had a super cool surprise. So in our mission we get to go to the temple once a year because its in the Guayaquil North Mission. So in the mission we get 30 minutes every week to do family history Wednesdays. So I have started to get into indexing a little bit. Anyways Elder Egoavil was able to find ancestors in his family tree and he talked with President Torres so Wednesday we got to go to the temple in the morning! It was honestly such a great experience to be able to go and do a session. Also completely in Spanish and I understood everything perfectly hahaha.  I got some cool pictures so Ill send them today. I was also able to buy some more garments so that was good. 

So I was looking in the family tree and on your side of the family there is so much work done! But I want to start to work a little on Dads side and see if there are any names I can take to the temple. Maybe you can talk to him and Gran and ask for birth dates, names, death certificates so I can start to grow the tree more. I would love to be able to take some names and do some work in the temple here in Guayaquil. 

Ryam was confirmed yesterday and the members of the ward get along super well with them so that is awesome as well. Also with the new bishop we are starting to have a lot more activities. And we had 10 people in English class this last week. We taught them how to pray in English! 

Yeah funny story about those brown shoes I brought out here. So I hadnt been able to find shoe polish for like 9 months so I went to one of those street shoe polisher guys. And he was a pretty old guy and kinda messed up the shoes. So now they are a dark brown but I am working on fixing them and the color with the shoe polish you sent me! 

Guess what so I finally got the package! And it was pretty awesome! I think it was opened but I am not sure because it came full of stuff. Maybe you could send me a little list of what it had so I could verify? But dont worry the Giants shirt did arrive! I love it im going to use it every night and every morning with those Giants shorts I brought! 

Glad to hear the Giants keep killing it..and sad to hear about the Warriors..but the world will go on! 

So in the temple I also bought the book Teachings of the Presidents of the Church : Joseph Smith. I have been reading and studying it this week and it is honestly so powerful. It has helped me understand more about the Restoration and about what Joseph Smith was called to do. If you guys havent read it yet, you should. I have learned so much about his dedication and sacrifice serving the Lord with all his mind might heart and strength. I know that as we continue to serve the Lord, as a member missionary, magnifying our calling or just being a friends to other people, He will bless you guys so much. I love this work and I will keep going and going on no matter what happens. I know that Christ lives and that he watches over us. Love you guys!

ELDER SOLARI