Santiago, Chile Temple

Santiago, Chile Temple
Santiago, Chile Temple

Monday, July 27, 2015

"We are planting seeds."

Family and Friends,

what a week. this one was better than others in the past. pretty solid if i could say so myself.

this week we only spent 3 days in our sector. we had district and zone meetings, splits, and we went to rancagua cause elder remon had his last check up before he gets all 4 wisdom teeth out. he gets them out on the 7th de aug. (Notice the language slip up?) it is going to be a rough couple of days for him. he doesn’t think it’s going to be that bad but, i know better.

splits were sooooo funny. i went out with elder loveridge who was voted the funniest elder for the mission hall of fame right before i came. he is honestly one of the funniest people i have ever met. he has no shame or fear. i hate contacting but contacting with him was so much fun. i hope one day we are companions because we became really close that day. it was nice to speak english for a whole day!!

i love zone and district meetings cause it is funny to see all the elders interact. it is amazing to me to know that the church is still standing after sending these elders out in the world. no, but really, there is a reason the Lord sends us out. it’s because we need to learn, but we have an energy that cannot be matched.

the food here is really good. every day we have rice with chicken and bread. everyday.  you would think that i would get sick of it but its is really good. sometimes they give us sunnyside up eggs. i put as much salt on those eggs as possible and mix it up really good with the rice because i hate eggs. somehow i manage to get it down.

i haven’t been homesick. many elders struggle with it, but i have been blessed. but i have been really homesick for my college life.  i miss the social life that i had. i think of school a lot. but then i have to remind myself that i am living a different life now and i better get used to it.

everyone here is catholic. because our message is about Jesus Christ, people don’t have a problem meeting with us for one time. we teach the first lesson ALOT, but people don’t want to hear more because they don’t want to change religions. but they like our message. i don’t really understand it. but it is good because we are planting seeds.

thank you all for your prayers. i love you all.

You can also see this video by clicking here

Monday, July 20, 2015

"I love the Lord and I love this Gospel"

These pictures are part of a savenger hunt that our zone did for pday.

From what Elder Magnusson said about dogs last week
he is sporting a pretty big smile as he stooping next to this dog.  

writing is honestly the best part of the week!!  this was one roller coster of a week.... i feel like every week is, but this one especially.

we found 3 new people to teach in the beginning of the week but they aren't progressing. that is the most frustrating part of being a missionary. we have such a good gift to give to people and you know that they want/need to change but they don't know how much they need to change.

the person that is killing us the most is someone that we met contacting. we had 2 super good lessons where the spirit was there and everything. we gave him a baptismal date and everything. when we went to visit him on saturday, we saw him walking down the street. when he saw us, he ran into a mini-market. we we called out to him, but he wouldn't come. we literally have noooo idea what happened. he seemed to be golden. we are going to visit him tonight but i know he doesn't want to talk to us. its kinda like asking a girl out on a second date when you know that she doesn't want to go with you. hopefully things work out.

we are having a lot of success with a family that was baptized about 7 years ago but haven't been to church in 5 years. for the past 3 weeks we have visited them about every other day. they are doing a lot better and have come to church for the past 2 weeks. the boy that is 18 expressed some interest in serving a mission the other day. i love the this family.

my comp is super funny. all latino missionaries are supposed to learn english but he hasn't really cared in the past. i am trying to help him. its kinda fun. the only words he knew before i came were.... don't touch me, one moment please, and please shut up. don't touch me is his favorite line ever. we will be riding our bikes and he will randomly say, “dont touch me” and then start busting up!!! it happens all the time and it is the funniest thing ever!! he is the biggest goof ball ever. he comes from super humble circumstances. growing up, any money that he made, went to support the family. he honestly thinks that i am super rich because i have 2 pairs of nike running shoes and my 10 dollar watch from walmart has a light on it.

things are all good in chile for now. i love the Lord and i love this Gospel. i know that Christ lives and that he is at the head of this church. i know Joseph Smith saw God the Father and his Son. the Book of Mormon is true and is the word of God written by inspired men for us. missionary work is super important and there is nothing i would rather be doing right now than serve a mission. this is my testimony. i love you all.

Elder Magnusson's testimony

We received this hand written letter in the mail (which I have typed up below) while our family was away on vacation for the past 3 weeks.   Elder Magnusson wrote the letter during his last week in the MTC.  

Yo Family,

This is my last week in the CCM.  It has been a long 6 weeks, but at the same time, it has gone by really fast.  I think back to my last days in the USA and that feels like years ago, but the weeks here fly.  I feel like the Sundays here are separated by only a few days.

Anyway, I have learned so much here about The Gospel and myself.  My testimony has grown so much.  There is no way that the Book of Mormon was written by someone who wasn’t inspired by God.  I have a new love for Joseph Smith.

The thing that is amazing to me is how the church is still standing after sending 18, 19, and 20 year old out on missions.  After spending 6 weeks with 200 of these missionaries, it is amazing.  But I have come to find out that these are some of God’s most special children.  They were sent here for different reasons, but each was sent by God through inspiration.

I can’t wait to get out into the field, but I am so scared.  I am nowhere near where I want to be with Spanish, but that is ok.  My trust is in the Lord.  There are 4 scriptures that have been my rock these past 6 weeks.

Mosiah 23:10
10 Nevertheless, after much tribulation, the Lord did hear my cries, and did answer my prayers, and has made me an instrument in his hands in bringing so many of you to a knowledge of his truth.
Alma 17:11
11 And the Lord said unto them also: Go forth among the Lamanites, thy brethren, and establish my word; yet ye shall be patient in long-suffering and afflictions, that ye may show forth good examples unto them in me, and I will make an instrument of thee in my hands unto the salvation of many souls.
Alma 26:12
12 Yea, I know that I am nothing; as to my strength I am weak; therefore I will not boast of myself, but I will boast of my God, for in his strength I can do all things; yea, behold, many mighty miracles we have wrought in this land, for which we will praise his name forever.
Ether 12:27
 27 And if men come unto me I will show unto them their weakness. 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.

I have come to love these scriptures

I love you all and I miss you so much, but I am doing really well.  I love being a missionary.  I have never felt The Spirit so much.  I love it!  I no longer think of myself as Sam, but as Elder Magnusson.  I know that Joseph Smith was a prophet and that he really did see God the Father and His Son, Jesus Christ.  I know that the Book of Mormon is true.  President Monson is the prophet today.

Thank you for your prayers.  I really do need them.  I love you all!

-Elder Magnusson

Monday, July 13, 2015

"There is power in prayer."

Elder Magnusson and Elder Remon

this week was one roller coaster of a week!!!

last fast sunday the whole mission and all the stakes in the mission fasted for rain because we haven't had rain in forever. well we definitely got rain this week. it rained alllllll day for the whole week except for monday. it is hard to do missionary work in the rain because no one is walking around and when you go contacting no one wants to come out of their house to open up the gate for you (every house has a gate around it) but we still managed to have success.

one funny thing is the first day that it rained we came home and our apartment looked like the sidewalks at royal oaks..... worms everywhere. it brought me back to my childhood. it was kinda funny actually.

last week i cant believe i forgot to talk about the dogs here. THERE ARE DOGS EVERYWHERE!!!! i cant stress to you how many dogs there are. honestly at least 2 or 3 on every street and that is no joke. they are soooo nasty. and they love to chase bikes which is always fun... not. and they don't ever go for my comp. they only go for me. its like they can smell the whiteness of my skin and like it. i have tried to kick a few but have failed.

i love my comp. even tho there is a language barrier we still can communicate just fine. i am learning so much from him. he is so humble and he loves being a missionary. i always feel like i am holding him back but he doesn't express his frustrations at all which helps.

our 2 golden investigators weren't so golden this week but thats ok. we are working with them and have found others to teach.

we met chris on the bus and he invited us over for dinner. he has a girlfriend and they don't want to get married but other than that they seem super good. we set up a return appointment with them they weren't there so we have only met with them once.

the day that we were going to meet with them was the day that it rained the most. i was in a bad mood because he lives in the middle of nowhere and we had to walk there because we cant ride our bikes in the rain. it took forever and i was super wet. when chris wasn't there my comp was mad because he needed to use the bathroom. i told him to just go in the bushes because we are in the middle of a field. he laughed walked to chris' neighbors house and knocked it. the first thing that my comp said was.... hey we are missionaries and i need to use the bathroom. can i use yours and the guy let us in! i couldn't believe it. we ended up teaching him and his friend and they  are now investigators. both have trouble with smoking so we will see how that turns out. i asked my comp why he did that and he said that he had a good feeling about it. he is in tune with the spirit.

we are also teaching family of 4 who seem good. we have had 2 lessons with them that went super well and we are teaching them tomorrow so hopefully that goes well.

cool experience of the week. last monday my comp had to go to the doctor in rancagua. another missionary had to go as well so i went on splits with an elder who happened to be a zone leader. i worked all day with him and because rancagua is super far away i spent the night as well. we taught a lesson at 8:45 at night and at 9:10 we told the family we had to leave to be back home in time. they told us of a short cut to get home faster. when we went outside there was a supppper thick fog out. i have never seen anything like it. i couldn't see 7 feet in front of me. anyway we got lost and we were in a sketchy part of town. we were walking around for an hour. we had no idea where we were. it was scary because of the fog, the area where we were wasn't very safe and we were late. i suggested that we say a prayer. we said a prayer and when we finished the fog parted and we saw our house. i have no doubt that we were protected that night. there were angels looking over us. there is power in prayer. i know that to be true.

i love what i am doing and there is nothing i would rather be doing right now. thank you all for your prayers!!

Monday, July 6, 2015

"I am not the same person...."

Elder Magnusson's new area is San Javier.  It is shown on the bottom of the map.  
Rancagua, where the mission home is located, is shown on the top of the map.  
family and friends,

what a week! this was my first week in the field and it has been crazy.

so i am in san javier which is super far south. it is a small branch of about 50 members. the members are awesome! they love the missionaries sooooo much. the treat us like kings. it is a pretty humble area. some parts are nicer than others but the poor parts are really poor. like dirt floors and houses made out of cardboard and scraps of wood. but these are the members that are the best.

our house is pretty nasty. it is all concrete with no tile and no heating so it is soooo cold in the morning and at night. i hate it so much. but we are only in there for studies, so it doesn’t matter too much. every missionary has an electric blanket so i sleep fine at night. our area is also a bike area. it is pretty large so the bikes are nice. the thing that isn’t so nice is riding in the cold. even with gloves your hands freeze!!! and don’t even get me started about my face. but i will survive. 

my comp is amazing. his name is elder remon and he is from peru. he is super humble therefore, he is a good missionary. he doesn’t know any english so it has made things interesting but we have gotten to the point where we can understand each other. he is a master at contacting. he is so smooth at it. he is so good that he can’t really teach me how because i don’t know the language.  he just picks some random thing on the street or in their house and just starts talking about it. it is hard to put into words but he is a master.  

we have 3 solid investigators and we are going to give 2 of them baptism dates this week so i will keep you posted. 

i honestly don’t understand a word anyone says to me. the language that i studied in the mtc is not the same language that they speak here. my comp, who is from peru, said it took him 3 or 4 weeks to fully understand the people because of the accent. he said it is one of the hardest to understand in south america.

i feel like i am lost. i don’t know how to describe it but it has been hard. i keep thinking back to lisa and when she talked about her first area on her mission and how she would be walking down the street and she would feel deaf. i didn’t know what she was talking about then, but now i understand. you hear noise all around you but you don’t understand it. you have to experience it to understand it. i have really been humbled this week. 

that being said i am doing really well. i am happy with my area because the members and my comp are amazing. i have waited my whole life to be a missionary and now i am one!! honestly there is no other place in the world  i would rather be than in san javier, chile. the church is true. i have met members that have sacrificed everything for it. the Book of Mormon is the word of God and i know that if a person reads it, it will change their life. i love my Savior. i owe Him so much. i am not the same person that left california 7 weeks ago and that is a good thing. i love you all!

Before the mission:  Sam holding his mission call
The new Elder Magnusson:  The day Sam arrived 
in Rancagua with Pres. and Sis. Warne