Monday, January 13, 2014



Saturday night in the highland high school gym coach don birch leans down to hug my mom, judy kunz and ask her how she is.  people watching may wonder what these two people have in common...what is the bond that they share...what connection do they have?  others that know both of them already know...they both lost sons tragically...way too soon...both leaving families behind who love and miss them.  one thing that both of these men, travis kunz and dan birch share is that they both served their heavenly father on missions.  travis in indiana and dan in Bolivia. 
imagine the lives that they both touched while on their missions.  imagine the gospel that was shared.  imagine the people who were changed by these two missionaries and their testimonies.  imagine the ripple effect that they have had on many lives.  imagine..

tate's message...

lunch was interesting. We ate with the family urzua. He served in Bolivia and so that was cool for me to hear some stuff about Bolivia and know that good old Gregory was there at some time in his life :). But he asked me where I was from and I told him pocatello. He then told me had some companions from there and one was named Armstrong. And then he said and the other passed away. His name was birch. Dan birch. It was crazy to see how small of a world it really was. Thinking about playing under the two birch coaches at highland and playing with his brother Kevin.  I still remember that hard week for practically the whole team as we remembered our coaches son. So if you talk to the birches. Tell them that their son touched a lot of people's lives and is still remembered by many. Crazy small world.

this week started off good. Pday was pretty relaxed. We woke up. Sent some info to the office and then went and ate with some other elders. Pork. Rice. Beats salad. Fruit cup and a cup of juice all for 4$. Legit deal. Then we did shopping and then headed to talk with you guys which was fun. The day in the sector went really well. We started with a lesson with one of the families we are teaching. (Mauricio and Pamela). They are awesome and I can see that they want what's best for their little family and know that they will find that it's the gospel. Then we practically walked around contacting people at houses and in the street. Pretty good time. We ended the night with a family who recently got sealed in the temple and then had a huge test of their faith when their daughter was in the hospital. We watched a Mormon message called good things to come. (I think). It was a spiritual lesson and it was good to help them see that sometimes blessings come now, some later, and some in heaven. But they come. 

Tuesday was a draining day. We had a meeting in the mission home and  were busy for 4 hours straight haha. Wow. But I learned a lot and it was fun to see elder page, elder Dixon, and elder Loar. Along with a bunch of other elders. Always a good time. We got back to the sector and had a hard day. No one remembered our lessons. Ended the day with a meeting with our ward mission leader. Good to have the wards support. I hope you guys are doing all you can to work with the missionaries and help them. If not, then start :). There are blessings found in missionary work.

 Wednesday was a really good day for us. We started with teaching the whole zone about the stuff we learned Tuesday at the mission home. It was pretty good and I always like helping the zone out an any way we can. Afterwards we had lunch with Boris and Bernadita (a young couple who always helps us in our branch, also gotta love the names) haha. We ate lentejas. They are like really little beans. Maybe Tyson or Troy could explain them to you. Or you could google it :). You can google anything these days. Then we had a really good day full of lessons. We actually were never in the street trying to find stuff to do. That was a blessing. We had a cool lesson with Boris and Bernadita later in the day about getting sealed and the blessings that come from it. I was glad to be able to testify of a family sealed in a temple for time and all eternity. That's one of the biggest blessings I have. Who wouldn't want to live with their family forever? I think if everyone realized that it is really possible, they would at least try to find out more information on how. We also had a really good lesson with one of our old investigators named Nazareth. If you remember her, when I first got here she almost got baptized but decided not to. We started teaching her again and hopefully she will follow through this time. We ended the night with another lesson with some pretty stubborn but really nice receptive people. Then to the house to plan, write in the journal. And sleep.

 Thursday was a day full of miracles. We started In the morning by going to the church to do a few things for the zone and to print a list of members that we can visit. Then lunch was served. We ate...............chicken. Surprise :). It was good though. Or maybe my body is just getting used to it after a year and 4 months. Afterwards we left to the sector and we first had a lesson with a new family we found doing contacts of people who had listened to the missionaries before. It was a nice little family. A mom. Dad. Son. And daughter. We will see how it goes. We didn't have a lot of time to teach them a lot but we are going to go back. We also found a kid that is like 14 who is really cool and he said he would go to church Sunday so we are excited for that.Then we had a really good lesson with the family I have already talked to you about. Mauricio and Pamela. We taught the sabbath day to Pamela. Mauricio was out of town. But she told is that she has received an answer from god that this is his gospel and his church. She is still nervous to go to church but we invited her to pray and see if it was the right thing to do. Pray for her!!! We ended the night by stopping by the president of the relief society's house to ask for some people we could visit or if she needed any help. We got home. Planned. And went to bed.

 Friday was a weird day and didn't get much done. In the morning we had to go to a few stores to buy some stuff for the zone and then ended up eating lunch in town as well. Then we took a. Bus to a town called chimbarongo. We had to do some quick last minute divisions and me and elder Mendoza from Mexico headed to our sector. We had a good lesson with Nazareth and then a good lesson with some young converts we have. Then we spent the rest of the night playing soccer. Pretty relaxed day ha.

 Saturday was a really HOT day. But it started by meeting back up with our comps in chimbarongo and then we went to the church to do some stuff for the zone. As well as while we were there a bunch of members from my second sector showed up for some leadership training so it was really cool to see them again. I will send pics when I get them from them. That made my day. I miss them. Lunch fell again so we just ate in town. Kinda a problem in our branch but whatever. Food is food. After lunch we had a decent day. Started with a really good lesson with Maria and margarita. Our converts. We taught them about prayer and how we can easily talk with god using the things from our mind and mouth. But a prayer is more than that. A prayer is expressing the thoughts of our heart. It was cool to teach them that and know that their prayers will forever change for the better. We next went to our convert Alicia and taught her about relief society and charity. Next on the agenda took us to Pamela and Mauricio(he's out of town tho). We taught them once again the importance of going to church but she still wants to wait a little longer until her husband gets home.  We will respect that but also invited her to pray about it and we would call her in the morning to make sure one more time. Then we headed to help a family husk corn. BIGGEST CORN EVER.  Pretty fun stuff. They are less active so hopefully we can gain some confidence and help them come back. That's how Saturday ended. Good day.

 Sunday  We had a rough day and none of our investigators went to church. But we will do what we can to help them get there next week. But president warne came to our branch today and he gave me time to bare my testimony before his talk. Not sure why but it was a cool experience. Lunch was interesting. 
Not much went our way but I was still grateful for another day out here to learn and grow.    We ended the night talking to our convert Samuel. He always inspires me with his live for the gospel and the Book of Mormon. We always get to his house and I can tell he is ready to learn and share. Maybe we can all learn a lesson from him. How many times are we caught with our Books of Mormon in hand ready to learn and share with others.? Ended my week on a good note. 

 Love you guys. Chenzgang . Looseboys. Chilean chillin. Nothin. Bye. 

Elder Harding. 

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