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Monday, December 29, 2014

MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!


Today I am having one of my happiest days in the mission. I am just so content.....but me voy! I am leaving Lirquen and heading to the Zona Andalien! I am going to be with the Hermana who finished the training of Hermana Garces and who trained Hermana Vawdrey from the MTC. Pretty cool I am so excited to learn from her and see more of Chile. I am going to miss Hermana Garces that is for sure. Our companionship was almost too good to be true. I am for sure going to miss all her dreams that she tells me about every morning.
But there is so much to do today to leave. We got the phone call Monday morning...I wiped a few tears away for having to leave Lirquen and started packing and will be in my new sector tomorrow morning first thing. But yeah I did have to shake a few tears. Leaving a place where I have walked the streets for over 4 months bright and early till 10 at night every day. It is hard to not be attach. I am going to miss Franco so much. He is a reference from our Bishop and he has been to church once already. He is the best! He was so down to hear I had to leave but we told him that when he gets baptized he will just have to send me  picture and he said yes :) We taught him the Plan of Salvation this past Sunday. He was all over it and before we even taught him he was teaching us from just what he thought on his own. He had thought there had to be a judgment to measure how good we were in this life. To compare the 10 good things in your life to the 5 bad. His heart and mind are so opened to the spirit and he tries so hard to meet with us. Even though he works on a lot of Sundays we to our best to make it work. Last Sunday he could not come to church because he was working at this restaurant. So we went in after church to tell him what he missed and how we missed him. And he taught us how to fold those cool napkins that are on the plates at restaurants . Now I can toss that special skill on my resume ;)
But as for my Christmas! I got to Skype my awesome family! I got to see beast family videos of my little sister tearing up the basketball cort and my awesome sister in Mexico stole my idea. Because she Skyped home firs, she had mom and dad record a message from her to me to watch when it was my turn. I was going strong with not crying till I had to say goodbye. My fam is the best!


This past Monday Hermana Garces and I had found ourselves in charge of this huge service project for our Zone. We organized a service dinner with the local police station. We had a dinner, choir, Christmas 
cards, videos, and great conversation for those without a home this Christmas. It was a tone of stress to put together. We had built a giant tree for decorations and had to run across town with it in our hands to the school that was where we were hosting the dinner. But when you are two Gringas in Chile people show you a lot of mercy. We ended up throwing our tree in the back of some random persons truck and the activity was beautiful. Lots of smiles!

If you have not been able to tell my mind is so scattered but full of so much happiness to share. Thanks for all your love and support and start off the new year with those who matter most!

Hermana Mckenzie Lance 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

FELIZ NAVIDAD


Being on the mission during Christmas is awesome! We have had so many experienced we would not have if the spirit of Christmas was not there to unite us in conversation with others. So much has happened! We had a great big Christmas program with the band of the police station. They threw me on the front row with a triangle with no more information then to play what feels right. So you can see from the picture that I had a lot of fun with it and got some fun comments about it at the end.
We had an activity at the church too. The missionaries built that giant tree you can see. It took forever but the kids and families loved it. We had an investigator come. Marcela!!! She is awesome. She is the Tia to a member who usually goes out with us to visit people. All of our plans had fallen and she said that she knew where to go. So we just started to follow her. She took us to the house of her Tia. But not the Tia Marcela. Her other Tia. But she was not home and she paused a little bit bummed and then continued walking, saying I knew there was a reason I wanted to come here. Her Tia Marcela lives more up the same road. Marcela has heard from the Missionaries plenty of times and knows how everything works. So she just giggled when she saw us coming to her door. But she gave us the shot and we all got along so darn well. We were laughing and crying and sharing parts of our lives so special to us in just half an hour of knowing each other. She accepted fetcha (baptism date)!! She works out in the country on the weekends so it will be a process to get her to church but she says she wants to do it and do it FOR REAL this time (I hope you like my English translation). The member



we were with se llama Jackie was amazing to have there. She has been out with us many times before but never felt so strongly to visit Marcela. It was the perfect day and perfect message that He is the Gift (the huge Christmas video of the church) and a worthy member lista to respond to the promptings of the spirit. Marcela is in the picture with me and the chips. She kept telling everyone at the party that I had hambre (hungry) so everyone kept giving me food. She is soo funny and I love her kind heart so very much!  But as for Christmas....give everyone a hug for me. I am so thankful for the time to represent Christ during the month we celebrate his birth. He is the perfect example on how to give. He always gave and never was the recipient. Neither did he ever expect to be. He is the only one who completed all of the will of his Father. He gave us his all and continues to give us all the peace in this life we need. He gave us everything we have. Even our talents and our time are his. So what left do we have to give...our will. Probably one of the hardest things to accept, but probably one of the biggest things we can do to show our gratitude. I love my Savior and all that he did for me and my loved ones.

Hermana Mckenzie Lance 

Friday, December 19, 2014

CHRISTMAS!!!!

It is less then 2 weeks till Christmas and it does not feel a thing like it. Other then the occasional songs we hear that bring back every little memory from our homes. But it has gotten us a lot of new people to meet and teach. Just by people being impressed how far away from home we were going to be spending Christmas.  But we are making the very best out of it. Hermana Garces and I got big, fuzzy, socks for Hermana Gamboa and Hermana Ponce in our house and we are doing the 12 days of Christmas for them every night with a little something for them to wake up to every morning. 

I hit 5 months of my mission the 16th of this month. Crazy to see how much Lirquen has changed in just the time I have been here for 4 months. And even how much change we have seen in just one week. After having a super duro week last week we had one of the very best weeks this past week!! After having to kill (stop visiting) an investigator who was not progressing he came to church ON HIS OWN this past Sunday. And told us that he was ready to take it seriously! We also went to visit Patty. The sweet lady who stood up for me getting short changed on the bus. She has two little boys. One who is 8 and the other 9. When she found out I grew up in Kentucky she got so excited. She yelled, " Kentucky Fried Chicken". I said "yeah that is it.....do you know it?" She is a pretty heavy set woman and she grabbed a fat roll (which are called completos here, meaning hot dog) and said "yeah I do, se nota (you can see)". She can not go more then 5 minutes without telling us how "linda" we are and with everything we say and family perfect this all is. But it is just the simple gospel of the Church of Jesus Christ. She knows she lacks in the religious aspect in her home and wants nothing more then for her two boys to have that in there lives. She said she usually does not speak up in situations like on the bus. But she is super glad she did y que ahora nos conocemos. 

BROMA: What does the cowboy say when he wants to call for his daughter......... HIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIJAAAAAAAAAAA :) 

Love you all! 
Hermana Mckenzie Lance 




Sunday, December 14, 2014

Mission Life

Oh my goodness!!!! I cannot tell you how many deep breaths I have had to take this week! We had to go from dropping loved investigators to finding solid new ones to having a father to a less active member of ours pass away. This week felt almost as long and draining as my very first week in Chile. We had to have a lot of "si o si" lessons this week. In other words, "a make it or break it lesson" where we have to decide if we can keep spending time with investigators who are not progressing enough to stay in our focus group. It is always  hard but better for everyone in the long run. Everyone has their own timing and I know I was not called to baptize a specific number of people but to give my very best. That was the calling to do everything in my ability and I know the Lord can work through these efforts.
One of which is teaching English. My comp and I have the assignment to teach English once a week to our Zone of Latinos and Gringos. It is not an easy thing for the Latinos and even though they were not thrilled with the idea we made it so fun for them all. We played ¨Do you love your neighbor¨and did relay races with spelling Christmas words. People were sweating and their was tons of dancing and cheering from a lot of the Latino Elders so I would say learning English is really turning around for them!
The name of this blog is The Gringa Life and we had one of the best stories only Gringa´s have. We were paying for a bust ticket the other day. Just to go down from the most North point in Lirquen to our house.  I was almost positive I  should have gotten a lot more change back for my peso but after asking the driver about it once I decided it was fine. The lady in line behind us said to the driver.....Sir....they may be Gringas but they are not tantos (dumb). She turned out to be an amazing contact and we have plans to visit her and her two sons in the week that is coming. And I got the correct change back.

I love you all so very much and am so thankful for the constant support. The Church is true and you are loved!

Hermana Mckenzie Lance  





Making Christmas Cookies at the Mission President's Home.

Wednesday, December 3, 2014

La Dia de Gracias!


 Ward costume party! Kitties & Super Women en vez de the Choose the Right sign we have Haze Lo Justo 














Of course we did not have much of a Thanksgiving but we taught our Latina house companions about some traditions. Hermana Gamboa from Peru still lives with us and now Hermana Ponce from Mexico lives with us. She is 28 and I would bet my 9 year old sister is taller than her. But we each went around our table for lunch and shared what we were thankful for. I can say that my list of thankful things have for sure changed from my time in Chile. My list ranged from my clean sink water and name brand toliet paper, to the opportunity to assist in the temple for the first time, and even though I am crazy far and in Chile, I can have MY family for eternity, 

But for right now my family is made up of Hermana Garces and I. We click so great! It is such a temptation to speak English with her so we had to make a rule to always speak Spanish in the street and we will slowly move to 100 percent Spanish. It is the funniest things when our conversations start in English and then slowly switch to Spanish and back and forth. We teach in such unity already. One time she had forgotten which lesson we were going to teach when we had entered a home. But she just wrote a quick question on her agenda in English. It is pretty fun to have secret language. 

El es la Dádiva! 


We have a wonderful project right now as missionaries and using this Christmas time to help share the gospel. It has a great video El es la Dádiva means He is the Gift. It is about the true gift Christmas. Here is the link.



Happy Holidays!





P.S. I almost forgot the best part of the week! We have had a really tough week as far as finding went - we had 0 new investigators....until Friday. And Friday we found 6 news! And one more on Saturday. It was hard to get to Friday with no one new but waiting for blessings makes them so much sweeter. Friday felt awesome!