Contact Information


Letter Mailing Address:
Elder Parker Spanbauer
Chile Antofagasta Mission
Casilla de Correo 70

Monday, September 28, 2015

Week 29 Vallenar

Sept 28, 2015

La mejor Misión Del Mundo! Hola De Vallenar!

So this week had some pretty good highlights. To start, my companion felt a lot better this week so we actually got to work! Finally! I was so bored in the pension. Good news is that I’m getting close to finishing the book of Mormon in Spanish! I remember when I first got here I could read the scriptures and not understand a single thing and now I can understand just about all of it. I am amazed at how much progress I have made. So we witnessed a miracle this week. Remember Jonathan? He’s the crazy alien guy and the one who basically just fell off the deep end with all of the symbols and stuff. Anyway, we had stopped passing by for like a month and then one night we receive a call from him and he says to come over to his house. We went and he basically said that he missed us and wanted to continue with the lessons. We had an AMAZING lesson with him. The spirit was so strong and we talked about the basics. We talked about the book of Mormon and how everything leans on the book. We basically said that all he has to do is pray and find out if the book of Mormon is the word of god and if it is, that means joseph smith was a prophet of god.... etc. During the lesson, Jonathan was randomly looking in the back of the book of Mormon and randomly came across a scripture reference and it was the same scripture you send me through email dad! The one in 2nd Nephi 28:30 about how we learn line upon line, precept upon precept and how we cant just obtain all of the knowledge at once. Jonathan loved this scripture and I know the spirit was present in that lesson. We taught soooo well! He said he shouldn’t have believed in random stuff on the Internet and he wants to start going to church! He’s back baby! We also had another lesson with him and his girlfriend for the first time! We taught her the first lesson and she said she is gonna read and pray. I truly believe they will be married and baptized now. It’s just a matter of when. I’m so glad I had the opportunity to experience this miracle. The lord works in mysterious ways. So as some of you know, next Saturday they call us for cambios (transfers) and there is a good chance that I am leaving but now I want to stay! We have so many people that are so close to baptism. However, I will go where the lord sends me. So.... what else.... Oh! I gave a talk about prayer in sacrament yesterday and that was super cool. I had no trouble speaking and many people complimented me, which felt good. Elder Malan and I also explored more of the "Cavancha" (the outer part of the sector) and we had to cross the freeway so we crawled through a storm drain to do so hahahaha. We have just been working hard and trying to set baptismal dates with people. That’s about all... oh and apparently there has been a bunch of small earthquakes nearby but I slept through one and the others weren’t that strong. That’s about it everyone, Love you all! Cuídense!

Elder Spanbauer

Missionary Bike

Elder Malan

Officially Legal

Desierto Florido


La Cavancha

La Cavancha

Famous Chilean Dish "Casuela"

Streets of Vallenar

Old Catholic Church in Downtown Vallenar

Dangerous Bridge
This is the tunnel that we had to cross through hahaha

Meet the people who feed us everyday! Mamita y Papito

Monday, September 21, 2015

Week 28 Vallenar

Sept 21, 2015

Hello everyone!!! So first off, YES, There was a big earthquake here and YES, I did feel it. The crazy part was that it wasn’t very close to us but it was still pretty strong. It lasted for at least a solid minute, which was very odd. I was in my bed and so was my companion and then we heard a loud noise. We knew it was just another earthquake but then it got stronger and the bed started moving like crazy! I jumped off the top bunk and Elder Malan yelled "Yup, time to go!" haha. We stood outside and the earth continued to shake. It was soooo cool. I barely made it out alive.... It was close hahaha. Its super sad that some people died from it though. Its because a lot of Chileans live in houses made of mud and hay. These houses don’t stand a chance against earthquakes. 

So as you guys know, or maybe you didn’t, this week was a pretty big week here in Chile. The 18th of Septiembre is basically one of the biggest days of the year. The best part was that we did absolutely nothing! You see, my companion Elder Malan decided to get super sick so we missed the 16-20. He got some sort of stomach virus and it got so bad to the point that we almost took him to the hospital. IT WAS BAD. I basically spent a week in the pension taking care of my companion and doing well... nothing. It was probably one of the most boring weeks ever. Sorry to break it to you guys. Also, as far as baptizing this cambio... I’m not sure its gonna happen this cambio because we have no one with enough church attendance to get baptized. That doesn’t mean I’m gonna stop working hard though! I can still do a lot of good here and I intend on finding more future investigators and families before the lord puts me somewhere else. Also, it is possible that I could stay another cambio so we will see. Anyway, not much else to report this week. I’m gonna send some pictures of the one activity we did get to participate in. Love you all! Until next week!

Elder Malan & Me

Costumes for our Church Activity

Decorating the Church

Church Activity

Boy that kinda looks like a little Braden Weems

Food at the Activity

Just hanging out in the shade

Street Market

Booth we set up in the market to share the gospel & treats

Overlooking Vallenar


Monday, September 14, 2015

Week 27 Vallenar

Sept 14, 2015

Hola Familia! La semana pasada fue super bakan! Hemos experimentado muchos milagros! Elder Malan y Yo entontramos a muchas personas para enseñar y eventualmente bautizar. Bueno, un dia estabamos caminando y fuimos por una casa grande en la cavancha (farm section of our sector). Tocamos en la puerta y una mujer nos recibiò. Hablamos con ella y nos dijo que sus hijos son miembros y que quiere bautizarse. Que Loco! La ùnica problema es que tiene que asistir a la capilla 3 veces por lo menos antes que bautizarse. Eso es fome pero esta bien. So this lady is ready to be baptized but needs to go to church 3 times before getting baptized which is a rule for any investigator. I probably wont see her get baptized in this cambio but maybe Elder Malan will baptize her. There is still a chance that I might stay in Vallenar but its more likely that I will get transferred. That doesn’t mean I’m going to pack my bags early though. I am going to do all that I can to leave Elder Malan with a ton of people to get baptized. So we had a really good day this week, which was this last Saturday. This was a very important day because it was our last day to invite people to go to church the following day. So we worked super hard that day looking for new people as well as talking to the most receptive people that we already know. I thought for sure that we were going to invite Claudia and Victor’s family this cambio. That day we talked with him to get him to go to church and he said no. He said he had to work and that kind of destroyed my confidence. I was counting on his family getting baptized this cambio and if he didn’t go that Sunday he wouldn’t be able to get 3 church attendances before they do cambios. I felt super down in the dumps and a little betrayed by heavenly father because I had been working super hard and I had been praying and fasting to find someone to baptize. I started thinking more about it and realized that if I’m not here to see the people get baptized.... who cares? What really matters is that they get to that point. I was thinking extremely selfishly. I am here for the lord and these people will be baptized when THEY are ready... not me. Anyway, it was late and I thought all hope was lost but then an impression came to me and Elder Malan to visit one more person even though it was time to head back to the pension. We visited a lady named Maria and she invited us in. She was with her 14 year old sister and her 3 kids. We talked a little and then we invited them to church. They said no because they had to make birthday treats for her cousin the next day and then I told her that if she went to church, we would go to her house after church and help her make the treats. She agreed! It was a miracle because my prayer was answered. They are both super good investigators and they both went the next day and really enjoyed. It. She said she wants to go again next Sunday. They are our last hope basically. Whether they get baptized this cambio or not, I’m so grateful that heavenly father was able to humble me and help me see the bigger picture. He does answer prayers and he loves us. I have grown closer to him than I ever imagined. I love the mission. Now, for a funnier story.... Elder Malan and I were exercising one morning and we went for a jog through the hills. We went off-road up this hill and we ran by this blanket and I was about to step on it and then a homeless dude threw the blanket off of him and started to yell hahahaha. I have no idea what he said but it was a little something like this.... hhaayyyeyayhhahahahaa! And after he put the blanket back on him and went back to sleep. I can’t believe I didn’t see him hahaha. He was so well camouflaged. It was pretty fun. Also, this week is the week of the 18th of September. This is one of the biggest holidays if not the biggest of the year. It is going to be super fun. We have many plans to go to BBQs and other fiestas. We both learned how to use the "Trompo" which is a super cool Chilean toy. You guys should look it up. Anyway, that about sums up the week. I love you all and take care!

Elder Spanbauer

This is a Trompo

Hot Dog Salad

Homemade Meal

Monday, September 7, 2015

Week 26 Vallenar

Sept 7, 2015

Hello friends and family. Another awesome week in Vallenar. So first off, we have been finding a bunch of new people to teach which is awesome but we still haven’t committed any of them to baptism. Victor still hasn’t gone to church but his wife did go with us again. The daughter just got mauled by a baby goat recently and it almost broke her jaw.... so the daughter didn’t go to church with us. Honestly, we could baptize the mom and the daughter but the parents need to be married and also investigators have to attend church 3 times before getting baptized. We have to work really hard the week to get all of our investigators to church so they can be baptized before I leave but what’s really important is that they just get to that point whether I am here or not. We will see if I can get a miracle and pull it off. The chances are super high that I will be transferred so we are going to be working super hard this week. This past Saturday we had Zone Conference with President Dalton and his wife Hermana Dalton. This was a special conference for me because I learned a lot. The topic was how to find new investigators and how to be baptizing constantly. That was basically what I wanted to here and learn. We also did practices where we had to teach the restoration but like a 5-minute version. It was awesome and one of the elders that we did it with is from my group. He is from Brazil and told me after that my Spanish was sooo good. This made me feel super good because I was always comparing my Spanish to everyone else and it basically destroyed my confidence. The practices went really good and I was able to express myself really well. One thing that touched me was president Dalton shared his testimony and he said that he wants every missionary to know that their mission president knows without a doubt that the church is true. This touched me a lot because it was a very simple and powerful testimony. It helped me realize that we don’t have to know everything to teach someone and touch their heart. Simply saying that I know this church is true is a very powerful statement. President Dalton is a very big influence to me. He has taught me so much and he is an amazing mission president. We had a couple of lessons with new investigators and one of them the lady told us that we aren’t allowed to invite her to our church. We then taught her the restoration and invited her to pray and read. She told us that the book of Mormon scared her and that she didn’t think it was right to have another book of Holy Scripture. She then opened it and started reading random parts and she loved it! Its like her heart was changed immediately haha. She was like "this is just like the bible" and she said she was going to pray. She can definitely be baptized and I know her prayer will be answered. We will probably meet with her today. Wish us luck! There really isn’t much more to say about this week. Except for... HAPPY BIRTHDAY DAD!!! I hope you had a good birthday and I’m sorry I wasn’t there to say it in person. I love you so much and the rest of you as well! You guys are always in my prayers. Until next week! Chao!

Re-Post of Elder Tanner Mangum in the Chile Antofagasta Mission. Great week for BYU fans and great TD pass from Tanner to beat Nebraska with a Hail Mary pass in the last second of the game!

Elder Spanbauer

BYU QB Tanner Mangum with Elder Leon & Elder Spanbauer