Monday, December 12, 2011

What A Week!

So a lot of crazy stuff happened this week. This whole last week I didn’t knock a single door, and I’m gonna explain why.

So Monday was our p-day, and Tuesday was our mission Christmas activity, which took all day. Wednesday we had zone class and other meetings, and then Thursday changed a lot of stuff.

Every time we have to pick up lunch and bring it back to our apartment, since there are 4 of us, we flip a coin to see who has to do it. Me and my companion lost, so we went to go get it. On the way over we walked by these guys that always yell crap at us and tell us to give them our money, and we just kept walking, because they always leave us alone once we get past them. But that day one of them decided to come follow us and he had what looked like a knife. He kept following us and yelling that he was gonna kill us and our families, he looked really evil too. So we kept walking away but he kept coming after us. When he got really close to us we told him that we would call the cops if he didn’t leave us alone, and he said do it, he said he would kill them too. But once we called them he ran off back to some park.

When the cops showed up we told them what happened, and we got in their car with them to go find the guy. We found him and his buddies in the park and we stayed in the car while the cops talked to them. Since he didn’t have the knife on him at the time, the cops couldn’t do anything, but the one guy saw us in the car and when he started walking away he turned around and mouthed something about killing us the next time he saw us.

After that the cops drove us back to our apartment. After we told President Laycock about what happened he ordered me and my companion out of the sector (ward) until change meeting, which was today. We went back Saturday night to pack, but that was about it.

 All 4 of us thought that we would for sure be staying in Los Presidentes for one more change for Christmas, but President didn’t feel safe with us being there after that, and I didn’t either. So today I got changed all the way to the farthest south stake in our mission. I’m in the Cordillera stake, Cordillera ward, and my new companion is Elder Briscoe. According to him, we have almost 200 people show up to church every week, which is more than twice as big as my old ward. My old companion Elder Buorgeous went to the middle of the mission to train a new elder, and the same with Elder Hilburn.

And yea that was my week.

Also I live in a house now, instead of an apartment.

I love you all,
Elder Allison

Monday, November 14, 2011


I am doing better this week, work is still really hard though. But I’m pushing forward. We have had quite a few lessons with less active members but other than that not much else. We have stake conference this Sunday, and a member of the 1st quorum of the seventy is going to be there. The elders that I live with are all pretty cool. It cooled down a little bit this week. We have one investigator, but she isn’t really progressing, not sure what to do about her. I keep forgetting to take pictures. I will try and do that this week. Sorry there’s not too much to say, this week was very uneventful. Sorry, I will write more next week and maybe start capitalizing.

Love you all
Elder Allison

Monday, November 7, 2011

Just Another Week...

November 7, 2011

Hey family and anyone else who reads this,

This week was kinda cool, our whole mission got together with the north mission and Elder Cook of the Twelve and Elder Corbridge of the Seventy, who is also the area president came and spoke to us. It was cool because we got to go up and shake their hands. We have stake conference in a couple weeks, and I think elder Zebballos of the Seventy is gonna be there. It’s cool because the temple, church area headquarters, and all the General Authorities for Chile live in our mission. Other than that nothing really cool happened this week. Success doesn't come easy here. I sent a picture of our first baptism. That was on the 30th of October.

Let me know what’s going on back home.
Love you all,
Elder Allison

October 2011

October 3, 2011
So I’m now starting my third week.

It’s pretty awesome, oh and Josh Hilburn isn’t my companion, but he and the elder that he is training both live with me and my trainer, and we all cover the same ward. So my companion, who is one of the zone leaders and another district leader might have to go on splits for a 24 period, which means I might have to go on splits with this elder whose been out for like 8 weeks, still being trained. He is from Nicaragua, I think that is how you spell it, and he doesn’t speak English. So if it does happen I should have a pretty interesting day.

I’m starting to be able to understand bits and pieces of most people, and there are a few people who i can understand pretty well, and i can have a conversation with the bishop here. Mainly because he is Colombian and his pronunciation is way better than anybody else.

I’m sending a few pictures on this email, they are not the greatest, I’ll send better ones next week.

A lot of our appointments fell through this week, but that’s very normal. As a new missionary I have to do a total of 4 hours of study each day, 1 for personal study, 1 for language, and 2 for companionship study. So we usually don’t get out of our apartment till around 1. Also because of the culture here, we get up at 730am and go to bed at 11:30pm, which is an hour behind regular missions. It’s really nice.

Love you all
Elder Allison

October 10, 2011
Hey thanks for all those points on conference, they were really good.

So work here is kinda hard. Our 2 main investigators keep having to postpone appointments, even though we have had such good and spiritual lessons with them. But on the bright side, there is this family that we have been teaching, Yoao and Angelica. They have 2 little girls and we got them to come to church last Sunday, and although the only stayed for sacrament meeting, it was good. They both have admitted that they know the Book of Mormon is true, but they both work and it has been difficult for them to come to church. So me and my companion, Elder McKnight, and Elder Hilburn and his companion have been teaching them together. My companion is from Kansas, and he is going home at the end of this change. He is really good at Spanish.

Just so you know, a change is 6 weeks, and is how long you are with your companion for at a minimum. Every 6 weeks we will get a call on Sunday night from the president’s assistants, and they tell us if we are staying in our ward, or leaving. Then the next day the whole mission meets at a chapel and you find out there who your companion is, if you are getting a new one.

September 2011

September 9, 2011


So today we got our travel plans, which has been the most exciting thing to happen so far. We leave the 19th, our first flight departs Salt Lake City at 1:50pm and arrives in Atlanta at 7:40pm. From there we leave at 10:00pm for Santiago and arrive in Santiago at 8:35am Tuesday morning. Oh i found out that we can call our families at the airport, so I will call you all from Atlanta since that is our longest layover.  It would probably be around 5:30 your time when I can call. I’ll figure it out later. I’m also the travel leader for our group, which will have 16 missionaries.  I might have to send a package home my last day here, since I don't know if I’ll be able to fit everything, it will mainly just be a few thing i don't use. Anyways I’ll email you later with more details, since i gotta get off now.
Love you all
Elder Allison

September 15, 2011

So I’m now down to 4 days before I leave!  Tomorrow we have this infield orientation thing, and Saturday is our last day of class! And Monday morning we are out of here. It’s so nice to finally be done with the MTC  Today I’m going to send home a packet with my camera card, and some letters.  SD cards have to be sent in padded envelopes. Oh, when you send my iPod down to Chile, make sure that you tape some kind of picture of like the Virgin Mary or something onto the package, apparently occasionally people will go through your mail down there, but we talked to a teacher here who got back from our mission about 11 months ago and he said that they are pretty superstitious about Catholic stuff like that and they won't bother your mail if that’s on it. Make sure that some pictures on the package. As for my iPod, wipe it and restore it, and put on as much Mormon Tabernacle and classical and gospel music as you have.  Make sure you send it with a working sync cord and a wall charger if possible.

Oh on Tuesday night for my last devotional here, elder M Russell Ballard came and spoke, it was pretty awesome. I was in the same seat as I was for Elder Holland, which was about ten rows from the front. So I had an amazing seat both times.

See if you can find out more about the riots in Chile. i wonder if Momo knows about them. Tell her not to worry.  Try googling Chile Santiago riots, and look at the images. It’s pretty intense.

Oh we found out that we are allowed to email anybody from back home, so send my email address to our extended family so if they want to write me they can just email me.

I love you all and I’ll probably be able to email you later this week, like on Saturday or Sunday. I’ll call you all from Atlanta, but if I have time, I will also call from the Sal Lake City airport around noon.  Make sure you have Momo over Monday night so she can talk to me too.

I love you all so much,
Elder Allison

September 17, 2011

So I got my ties yesterday, I love them their pretty awesome, thanks so much to you and Momo.
We leave on Monday, I’m so excited! We finished our last day of class and now we just have Sunday and then we are out of here! it’s so weird to think that two months ago Uncle Jim was dropping me off here. Time really has flown by. One really important thing!! I still haven’t picked up my other suit from the dry cleaners yet so I’m going to do that Monday morning. I don’t know if you have put any money in my account yet but if you haven’t, I desperately need you to do that before Monday. 

After dinner tonight we did most of our packing, except for one load of laundry that I am going to do Monday morning, right before i leave. I’m gonna send a package or two home on Monday, just with a few things that i didn’t need. Also I am sending home my temple clothes, since all temples have clothing for the missionaries. I’ll get on tomorrow and let you know what time I can call home at on Monday for sure.

Love you,
Elder Allison

September 26, 2011
Oh man where to begin?

So Chile is awesome! I am in the city of Nuñoa, I think that’s how you spell it. All the houses are completely gated, they are like minnie fortresses, due to high theft rates. The stake right above mine is the super rich area. My area is pretty cool. I can barely understand anyone though. Except for my bishop, he is Columbian so he speaks a lot clearer than anyone else. My companion is really good, he is very helpful and has for the most part completely mastered the language, so he does most of the talking.

Right now we have to main investigators, Yael, she’s 18 and we have her committed to baptism, but that doesn’t mean a lot, and José Farize, he is in his 50s and he’s doing pretty good as well. The houses are a lot smaller here, but some of the people have pretty nice cars, so your house size doesn’t mean a whole lot. They use the Chilean peso, and the exchange rate is about 500 pesos to a dollar.

 Food prices here are similar to back home. If i skimp, I can get away with only spending half of my food money. The members feed us pretty well, here we always have lunch appointments, and some of the members feed us a ton. By the way, remember that time that Uncle Ben and I think Grandpa Grant or Mike or someone came for dinner and ate a ton of lasagna? Well yesterday I put them to shame. Since people take offense if you don’t clean you plate, I have to eat everything, and I have eaten some pretty weird vegetables. So yesterday for lunch the lady that was feeding us brought out our plates and on each one was about 40-45% of those pans of lasagna that you make at home. And yes i ate it all. But we do so much walking that we are always hungry. 3 out of 6 lunch appointments that I have had so far, we have had chicken and mashed potatoes. The food here is pretty good. Empanadas are pretty good too.

 So far I really like Chile. The Andes Mountains are pretty cool, they still have snow up at the top of them. There is a ton of smog here though. They don’t baptize nearly as many people here as I thought, since when the church was established here in the 60s or 50s it was almost a fad to join the Mormon Church, there was a ton of competition between missions for higher numbers. Several years back Elder Holland came here and got things under control. Quite a few people ended up getting excommunicated for lying regarding numbers and other stuff. As a result there’s over half a million members on record in Chile, but only about 10% are active. The ward I am in has a pretty high active rate compared with the rest of Chile, we have a little under a 100 active members, around 400 inactives. Supposedly there are wards here that have as many as 1500 inactive members, so reactivation is a huge thing here. We got this inactive lady to come to church yesterday, her parents that she lives with are also inactive, they hadn’t let missionaries into their home for over 15 years, but they decided to let us in. Her parents were gonna come, but her dad was feeling sick, he is pretty old. Before he went inactive, he was a freakin’ temple worker for 12 years, and had done the temple work for a couple thousand of his ancestors. Ill update you more next week, my time is almost expired.

August 2011

August 2011

As of today I'm halfway done with the MTC!  I don't think I will miss this place. I have yet to hear anything but the best things about my mission.   We were talking to one of the branch presidency members here who went to Santiago and he said that he could almost count on two hands the times he got rejected at the door. He obviously didn't baptize everyone but he said that almost everyone would invite him in.

If you want an idea of how many members are in santiago, go to and use the find a meetinghouse/google earth thing and checkmark it to show meetinghouses. Its got tons of church buildings in Santiago. As soon as I fill my memory card I'll send it home. Espanol es teniendo mas, lo estaría muy bein. The food here doesn't really change. I'ts almost always the same thing everyweek.

Thanks for all the addresses. Tell Josh and Jake thanks for the letters, and Rise of Nations is fine for Josh to play.  He might wanna buy a new disk though since that one tends to freeze up the computers since its scratched. If he gets a new one make sure its the Rise of Nations with the thrones and patriots expansion combo pack. Its probably like 10 bucks now.

Love you all
Elder Allison

July 2011

July 2011

Hey family, I am doing great, the MTC is freaking hard. After I'm done writing this I have to go right a 3 minute talk es espanol. The MTC is alright though, I'm in the minority here since I am in a tri-companionship since one elder didn't show up. My companions names are Elder Cram and Elder Reber. The food isn't to bad, its all you can eat too. I've seen a few guys I know here. As for the Spanish, I think were in something called the pilot program, I'm not entirely sure what that means. (Darren was in it for Portuguese) I think part of it is that our instructor says almost everything in espanol, so sometimes its hard to understand what he's saying.  For being in here for 3 days I already know a little Spanish, but conjugating verbs will be the death of me. When I talk to people they can't always understand if I'm talking in the past or present or future. Also i need 3-4 more short sleeve shirts ASAP cause its so dang hot in long sleeves. I only have 4 short sleeves and since companions always have to match when it comes to shirts they are not gonna be happy if they have to wear long sleeves. Also send me my regular shoes. Tell everybody hi for me and that I love them. Yo se que dios es nuestros padre celestial, y el evengelio es verdado, y Jose Smith resorado la iglesia de jesucristo de los santos de los ultimos dias, en el nombre de jesucristo, amen.
Elder Allison

Dear family, and whoever else reads this
I'm doing ok, the MTC is pretty hard though. So when i first got here i was part of a tri-compainionship since one elder didn't show up. But they put me back in a regular companionship the other day so my only companion is Elder Cram. He's from Nashville Tennessee and went to BYU last year. Elder Reber who was also my companion until a couple days ago is from Saint George Utah.   He played division 1 baseball over at the University of Kentucky last year. He is now pared up with Elder Weaver. Elder Weaver was born and partially raised in Australia, he moved to Utah when he was like 10 or something. He and Elder Reber are our roommates. If I get them developed today I'm gonna send some pictures home, otherwise I'm just gonna send the SD card home, but don't erase the pictures on it, just copy them off and send it back to me. Except copy the video off and then delete it of the SD card. It's the video of me opening my mission call. 
We pretty much have 6 hours of class with a teacher everyday, and the other times we spend using computer asisted learning programs forSpanish or personal study time. The one thing that I find anoying is that there is no rest on Sunday, if you have any free time they have you sit in our class room and study. There is almost never anytime to catch up on rest here.
I've seen Miles Wheeler and Mitchel Boberg so far, they are both in the same building as me for class. A buddy of mine from the singles ward is gonna be here next week.
My regular p-day is Thursday, they just let us do it on Saturday last week since it was our first week. If you can in the future send all your emails or letters on dear elder before Thursday that way I have a hard copy and don't have to spend my email time reading them since we only get 30 minutes a week and a clock is ticking.
The spanish is coming ok, still kinda hard though.
I love you all
Elder Allison


The MTC is going well, Spanish is coming along mas o menos.  My companion is pretty helpful. Today is p-day so we went to the temple this morning.  We decided to try the cafeteria in the temple and the food there is outstanding compared to the MTC cafeteria. Being in the class room for 8-9 hours a day gets a little hard. there isn't much to say about since every week its the same routine until we leave, it gets a little boring. On Sunday nights they have an MTC fireside and on Tuesday night they have a MTC devotional. this last Tuesday they had Gerald N Lund who was a former member of the Seventy speak, I think he was the one who wrote The Work and the Glory books.Let me know how your trip was to Utah. On Saturday afternoon I was in class, again. I'm so jealous that dad gets to go to BC this year.

I talked to one of the teachers for the other districts who went to Santiago East, and he said it was amazing. We have also been told by several people that the northeast side of Santiago which is in our mission is the wealthiest area in all of South America, so its pretty much the richest area south of the U.S. border since Central America isn't that wealthy. Also our mission is supposedly the smallest proselyting mission in the church. I don't know if that's true but its definitely got to be in the top 3 smallest. 

Also I sent a couple letters home, I don't know if they got there yet, I said in one of them how I ran into a cousin of Grandpa Grants and Aunt Connie. 

Anyways I love you all and miss you.

Elder Allison