Monday, April 25, 2016


Hola Todos!

Gracias for all of your emails. I love hearing about your lives. It is so fun!! Thank you!

THIS WEEK I COMPLETED 6 MONTHS. Its not even real. I feel like I still dont know anything.

This week was cambios and I am STAYING IN VALPO! This means that I will be in this ward for 6 months by the time this cambio is over. That is a 3rd of my mission! And I couldnt be happier. I know there are things I still have to do here before I leave. I have seen the ward grow so much and it is such a blessing. I LOVE it here and thinking of leaving makes me cry. I love these people with all my heart. My companion is still my companion. Poor thing. I am learning so much from her. She is my shining example. 

This week was hard. And good. There were a few days that I fell asleep crying. There were a few days I fell asleep laughing. My body is definitely beginning to feel the mission. There were a few nights this week when I got back to the apartment so tired that I couldnt even keep my eyes open for planning and planned with my eyes closed. My companion and I are trying to enjoy this time though. It rained more and also was hot a little bit. The weather is crazy and kind of reminds me of Utah right now. 

This week we had the Show de Talentos! Or talent show, in the ward. :) It was super fun and LOTS of people came despite the fact that it was raining. That in and of itself is a miracle. I played the piano while one of the elders sang and it was good to be accompanying again.

We found 7 nuevos this week, 2 of which are references. That is awesome. I wish every member knew what it means to recieve references. I challenge you all to read Every Member a Missionary by Craig Christiansen. BOOM! Miracles happen.

Dita still is unsure about baptism. We have testified a lot but it is hard when she is still unsure. When we asked her if she had prayed to know if she needed to get baptised right now she told us she hadnt because she was too scared to. I know that she knows she needs to get baptized. She didnt come to church because she was really sick so the Bishop and another brother went to give her a blessing. Hoping for the best. 

I love this gospel. I love the mission. I am learning to be a better me. I love these people SO much. The church is true. If you dont know it, go pray about it.
Jjajaja This is me trying to take a selfie with a dog.
This is my new favorite thing. I think it is called a hot water bottle in English. I am not sure. But it is cold here at night.

Love you all!
Hermana Leah Kelson

Hermana Leah Kelson
4 Norte 1112 Casilla 631 
Viña del Mar, Chile

Monday, April 18, 2016

Its Raining, Its Pouring

Hola Todos!
What a week! It rained a ton and we have been a little wet. The bad thing about rain is that no one comes to church and sometimes people dont answer their doors because it is rainy. The good thing about rain is that sometimes people feel bad for you as you are knocking doors and let you in. Hahaha! We look like Teletubbies in our rain ponchos. I actually love the rain. 

Dita (daughter of Patricio) has been reading the Book of Mormon and feels like she has recieved an answer from Heaven but has fears of being baptized if she is just going to fall afterward. We are trying to help her with that. We also taught Cristobal a 15 year old that doesnt live with his family and his mom past away a few years ago. He reads every thing that we leave him and seems interested. We found a new investigator, Kata, a 14 knocking doors in the rain. She accepted a baptismal date for the 15 of May. WOOT! Miracles are real, yáll. Alejandro is still smoking and it is hard for him to stop. We will probably have to drop him .That is the hard part about missionary work. 

I have discovered something this week. It is not enough just to plan if we do not DO. Sometimes we sit around and plan and plan and plan but if we would jsut get on our feet and DO stuff then things actually get done. Sometimes instead of arguing about the problem we just need to be the one to fix it. Being a doer and not just a planner is an eternal perspective. 
 My two favorite Chilean foods combined. Empenadas and pastel de chocolo. This is Hermana Carreño. She reminds me of Grandma Larsen. She made this beautiful creation.

Haha. Also, I taught Hermana Camargo to say ¨Stinkin¨ instead of ¨Freaking¨because I said it sounded nicer. (She only knows a few English words). At one moment as we were knocking doors in the rain and no one would let us in she turned to me and said ¨Stinkin persons¨. I laughed super hard. I love her!

The church is so true. I know it! I am so grateful for this chance to serve. I love it more and more each day.

All my amor!

Hermana Leah Kelson

Hermana Leah Kelson
4 Norte 1112 Casilla 631 
Viña del Mar, Chile

Monday, April 11, 2016

Taking My Own Advice on Happiness

Dearest People of my homeland and anyone else who happens upon this,

How I love you all. Really truly. I love you all. Thank you for the part you all have in my life.

This is from the birthday party we had as a zone today for our district leader. Have I mentioned that Elder Quinton Dickerson is in my district and is the companion of my district leader. I see him at least once a week and we talk to him every night when the district leader calls. It is crazy that 2 OHS tigers end up in the same city in Chile. CRAZY!

This week was full of a lot of tears: because of the good, the bad, the ugly, and the many many miracles.

This week we had intercambios. The hermana leaders are great and suggested that my companion and I have interviews with the Zone leaders this week. Let me just say that sometimes we dont know we are unhappy until someone tells us so. :) Haha. I have been trying so hard these last 3 weeks to convince myself that I was happy. But each day it got harder and harder to be happy and I was more and more irritated with life, my companion, the work, investigatores, members. I got more and more depressed and wasnt laughing, wasnt smiling, and was just plain sad. My poor companion. I have just been super stressed as a trainer I think.
Anyway, this interview was exactly what I needed. The Elders told me they noticed I havent been happy. I started bawling quite unattractively and said they were right and asked what I needed to do to change. Haha. #hermanas. They helped calm my fears and told me I was doing enough. They shared personal experiences and helped me know I am not alone. I realized just how unfun I have been with my companion. POBRECITA. Thus, I have tried harder to be a happy missionary. And it has worked. :) You know how I always said, ¨Happiness is a choice. We have to choose to be happy!¨Yeah, I am trying to take my own advice. :)

This week Patricio came to church with Sandra and their daughter Dita. They all stayed for all of the meeting despite the fact that it was Patricio´s birthday! In the Gospel Principles class at the end he made a comment and told the class that we, Sister Camargo and I, had knocked on their door at just the right moment and that he has found a happiness that he had been craving. He was crying as he said this. It was one of the sweetest moments I have ever experienced. I have never felt something so fulfilling as missionary work. I am a literal instrument in His hands. After church there was a baptism of a few of the Elders in our ward and stake. We asked them if they wanted to stay. Dita really wanted to so they did! Dita told us this week that she really wants to know that the church is true and that she feels really comfortable there. She wants to be baptized when she knows it is true! MIRACLES!

This week I was also reading in Mormón 9. There it says that God is a God of miracles. I prayed that morning for miracles and then worked to see them. There were many miracles. Many many miracles that day. We found 3 new investigators and taught many lessons. I testify that God is a God of miracles. If we ask in Faith (faith meaning that we believe He will and then ACT to see those miracles) that He answers our prayers and miracles happen. 

I love you all. Miracles are real. I see them every single day. I love the mission. I really truly do. There is no other place I would rather be. 

A tarantula we found. We took this picture from VERY far away and with zoom.

Hermana Leah Kelson

Hermana Leah Kelson
4 Norte 1112 Casilla 631 

 I broke through my first pair of shoes! #missionarycheckpoints

Monday, April 4, 2016

Conference is Spiritual Feast

Hola Todos!


Aileen is a member that has been helping us lately. She is great! We love her!

IN between sessions Saturday we bought Chorrillana. Its is like Animal style fries from Inn and Out but on steriods. It is fries with lots of meet, fried onions, spices, and fried eggs. The three of us ate the whole thing. :)

What a wonderful conference weekend. This week was really really hard. I feel like I failed a little bit as a missionary at moments this week. I have been angry and frustrated more than once. But conference both humbled and comforted me. 

I loved every conference talk from President Eyring to Elder Holland. I cried through it all. I had the chance to watch it in English. My companion was upstairs on splits watching it in Spanish. We both rejoiced for the new temple in Lima Peru, where my companion is from. I testify that these are the Lords servants and that when we listen, understand, and APPLY their consejo we will be blessed more than we can imagine. I urge you all to make GOALS from what you learned at conference. It is not enough just to take notes and think ¨Well that was nice.¨What is the good if we do not apply it? I, myself, have much to apply. I was slapped in the face a few times and have a new resolve to honor the sacrament and my baptismal and temple covenants.

This week the word of wisdom and the law of chastity have been what have been holding back our investigators. That has been really hard. I testify that the commandments are real and that there is power when we decide to keep the commandments. When we decide to stop doing something against the commandments it will be very hard. There is no doubt about it. But it is possible with Him. 

People tell me my Spanish is getting better. :) Thats good. I am still very far from perfect but I am better. :) I feel like that is the theme of my mission. I am very far from perfect but I am getting better. I have never had my weaknesses so exposed. I have never wanted so badly to improve. I have never been so grateful. I have never had a love for someone that I just barely met like I have here on the mission. The mission is incredible. Incredibly hard but incredible.

Last pday we, had a picnic with the other hermanas in our zone with permission from the Presidente. SO GREAT.

Thank you all for your experiences and hope and emails. I love it all. You have lifted me more than you know.

You know you are a missionary when even your shampoo talks about the resoration.

Amor! Olay!

Hermana Leah Kelson

Hermana Leah Kelson
4 Norte 1112 Casilla 631 
Viña del Mar, Chile