Mission Change

[Update from the father of Sister Berbert]

As a result of mission boundary changes Sister Berbert is now serving in the Chile, Rancagua mission. This web site has been updated accordingly, including the mission address and other mission-specific links. Her email remains the same, anna.berbert@myldsmail.net.

Nearly half of all missions will have new mission presidents this week (including the 52 new missions). Here is a photo and a little bit of information about President and Sister Warne, who will be serving in the Chile, Rancagua mission for the next 3 years:

President and Sister Warne

President and Sister Warne, Chile, Rancagua mission

Thomas Robert Warne, 57, and Renae Kellis Warne, six children, South Jordan 9th Ward, South Jordan Utah Stake. 
Brother Warne serves as a ward young single adult leader and is a former high councilor, bishop, ward Young Men president, ward Sunday School teacher, and missionary in the Spain Madrid Mission. President, Tom Warne and Associates. Born in Honolulu, Hawaii, to Thomas Edward and Therese Wadsworth Warne.
Sister Warne serves as a ward young single adult leader and as a ward Relief Society pianist. She is a former ward Relief Society president and counselor, counselor in a ward Primary presidency, and ward Young Women adviser. Born in Mesa, Arizona, to Raymond Sterling and Nadine McRae Kellis.

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Chile, Week 11 (Talca, Jardín del Valle)

Our welcome to the new area and apartment

Our welcome to the new area and apartment

Wow, what a week! I have never felt so much energy for the work before. I don’t know what changed, but I just feel so excited everyday to work. My companion, Hermana Mendoza from Mexico, is awesome. She only has a month more in the mission than me. They told us that we are equal co-companions so that’s kinda unique. We are opening a new sector (called Jardín del Valle in Talca) for sister missionaries so we both showed up knowing absolutely nothing. The first day we didn’t even know where to begin!

My companion, Hermana Mendoza

My companion, Hermana Mendoza

We’ve had a lot of adventures this week, walking around like crazies with our little maps because otherwise we both get lost. The apartment is a whole other adventure. The elders that lived there before left us all kinds of little surprises. We’ve had a lot of problems with the shower not working and water leaking or no warm water at all. Our first day we just heated up some water on the stove and poured it over ourselves with cups to shower. The bunk bed doesn’t have guard rails on the top bunk and the other day I rolled right off in the middle of the night and fell like 6 feet. Scary! We also didn’t have any food except for oatmeal and mashed potato mix. I’ve never eaten so much mashed potatoes in my life. One day I tried putting sugar in to see if it would taste like ice cream. Ya… but don’t worry. Finally P-day has arrived and I bought a bunch of fruits and veggies.

Here is the bunk bed that Hermana Berbert fell from

Here is the bunk bed that Hermana Berbert fell from

So, like I said, I’ve never felt so excited about the work. A couple days this week I woke up early and couldn’t go back to sleep and was just thinking about how we could help this sector. We’ve really felt super-inspired to use members a ton and the broadcast with the prophet this Sunday just confirmed our feelings. The first Sunday in a new sector they let us bear our testimony to introduce ourselves to the ward. I took advantage of the moment to invite all the members to act. There is a statistic (maybe I’ve already mentioned it in a blog, can’t remember) that for every 800 contacts the missionaries make, we’ll have one baptism, but for every 14 contacts that a member makes, we’ll have a baptism. So I invited everyone to write down the names of at least 14 people they know who aren’t members and start to pray about their list and who might be ready to receive the gospel. We’re already making plans with the members and it can be something really natural (they can invite their friend to a family home evening, church activity, or “once” which is kinda like a mini-dinner) and we get to know their friends there and plan another time to pass by.

One of the pictures in our apartment (left by the Elders)

One of the pictures in our apartment (left by the Elders)

I’m really excited to work in this new ward because the members are really great and a lot of them have been members their whole lives. In my previous sector the whole ward was new converts and everything was kinda crazy. Things are more stable here and people are so willing to help out. Also the people are more rich, but not the snobby kind of rich. It’s just really obvious that they are righteous and the Lord is blessing them in spiritual and temporal ways. In fact, in the US they wouldn’t be considered rich, but compared to my last sector they definitely are. In Conti, lots of people lost everything in the big earthquake/tsunami so they are super poor but sweet and more humble.

Last night we met at a chapel at night and read scriptures until 1:30 in the morning and then traveled all night to Concepción for the last time to say goodbye to the mission president. It was really great and there were tons of missionaries. In the end everyone had a little moment with the President and his wife and they let us give them hugs (the only hug I will give a man my whole mission haha). Also I had to say goodbye to a lot of my friends who are staying in Concepción and my mission “mami,” Hermana Lovell. It’s kinda sad, but I know it’s the Lord’s plan. I feel in my heart that Rancagua is really my mission and where I’m supposed to be (in a way that I didn’t feel before with Concepción).

One more photo from good-byes in Constitución

One more photo from good-byes in Constitución

Gotta go, love you all! Share the gospel with everyone and pray for opportunities to serve. 🙂 Thanks for the letter from Ken and Sheila and Amanda and everyone else who wrote me lately! Love you guys! Oh, and happy late birthday to my grandma! Miss you and love you tons! 🙂

Love,
Hermana Berbert

Chile, Week 10 (Constitución)

With my companion, Hermana Martinez

With my companion, Hermana Martinez

So the big exciting news is that I got a last-minute transfer today. I’ve only been with Hermana Martinez for 4 weeks so it was unexpected. I really didn’t think I was going to leave Constitución. I love it here so much and we are really starting to have a lot of success. Today we went to the beach with one of our converts, Hermana Clara. It was really beautiful and we just goofed around and took photos in the morning. There is not enough time to say goodbye to everyone and I’ve been crying a lot today. I’m going to transfer to Talca which is closer to the mountains and a lot colder. It’s also more city than here. Conti (Constitución) is tiny and everyone knows each other. I love it and really feel at home here. I’ll be opening a new sector for sisters. I’m officially in the Rancagua mission to stay so that’s a big change too. I’m excited to see what new adventures are in store but Conti will always have a special place in my heart. I don’t think there is a sector more beautiful in the world!

Fresh crabs, anyone?

Fresh crabs, anyone?

I’m gonna miss my Latina sisters a lot. I’m the only gringa in the house and I’ve been teaching them some English phrases. 🙂 Their favorite is “Hey Baby” and they say it all the time to each other. haha. I like messing with them and I taught one of them that when she needs to use the bathroom she could say , “Time to water the plants!” She kept practicing it and every time she said it I just cracked up. Today I finally told her what it really meant. They also like to sing “Scripture Power” and “Head, Shoulder, Knees, and Toes.”

Saying goodbye to Clara and her daughter

Saying goodbye to Clara and her daughter

Anyway, I still have to say goodbye to everyone and pack my suitcases. I really was not prepared at all for this transfer. Again I’m learning to live more in the moment. I wish I had written my converts and told them how much I loved them when they were first baptized. Now I don’t have much time and I have to leave! I wish I had printed photos to give them. I’m still gonna try to send stuff later. Life just happens so fast. I really want to learn to live so that I’m prepared for anything. Don’t know if that’s possible…. hahaha but I’m gonna try to learn it.

An appropriate place to take a photograph

An appropriate place to take a photograph

Also I’m gonna learn to live life uncomfortably yet happily. That’s my advice to you all. Life will never be comfortable. I’m always tired and almost always hungry and very often emotionally overwhelmed, but if I let the little things get to me, I’ll never enjoy anything. I think a big test of this mortal life is if we can find joy despite feeling uncomfortable in one way or another. I’m learning to enjoy the little things. A chocolate bar (ok, let’s be honest, that’s a big thing). But the joy of hearing a song I like in the morning or being able to sit on a comfortable couch or to hug someone that I love. These are the greatest things in the world.

Pretty scenery (and a pretty missionary)

Pretty scenery (and a pretty missionary)

So I also think that the reason missionaries eat so much is cause we are so tired all the time! There is no other way to try to get more energy than to eat. We don’t have time to sleep or rest so our body’s natural reaction is to eat and try to fuel us up for everything we have to do. That’s my theory. The sad part is that it doesn’t even work! We still feel super tired after. Sometimes I feel like a zombie, why am I soooooo tired!!!??

Part of our scenic hike in the Andes mountain region

Part of our scenic hike in the Andes mountain region

LOVE!!!
Hermana Berbert

A memorable hike into the mountains

A memorable hike in the mountains