Tuesday, July 29, 2014


      Wednesday was super hard i felt like it went on for hours and hours and hours staying awake was impossible! but it was still full of the spirit so i can't complain! 

Thursday was Pioneer day and no one down here knows about it not even a ton of the missionaries... so i told everyone that it was and made it a special day because no one else seemed to really care! but I had a really awesome day!! And Elder curtis and I were asked to teach in priesthood! that was really special!

Friday was pretty boring... Hermano Marcel bore his testimony about Never losing the Faith. i really love that message! why are we here not for ourselves, so don't lose the faith!

Saturday during one of our lessons President Doll the president of the CCM came in and was a memeber of the ward. He taught us so much about listening to the investigator and focusing on their needs. at the end of the day i felt Really sick but i prayed and when i got to Alcantra i went right to bed and sunday i felt better!!

Sunday was full of the spirit!!! WE listened to a talk by Elder Oaks that was awesome he talked about missionaries who have a real change of heart! Elder Gilbert taught the lesson in the afternoon devotional about planning and being prepared. then sacrament meeting and sunday school were both focused on obedience!! And then Elder Curtis and I taught a lesson about the book of Mormon to all of the English speaking Elders in priesthood! 

Monday was sad there were a lot of lasts... our roomates and a bunch of the missionaries left this morning (tuesday morning!) so it is sad to see them leave and Elder and sister Gilbert the couple that is called to mannage Alcantra leave on thursday and the Jacobsons come in!! that is going to be a hard goodbye! WE also went out on the streets and gave out pamphlets! It was super scary but really cool we gave out all three of ours and got some new names for the local missionaries!! 

Now Ethans Missionary Stats at the CCM!! 
13-15 prayers in one day(sometimes more)
2-3 hours of scripture study and reading
4-5 hours of language study
3 meals a day
3 different teachers every day

This weeks missionary message is about listening! I felt like i kept hearing the idea of listening all week long!! you have to listen so you can aske inspired questions. this way investagators will teach themselves and tell you exactly what to teach them! its amazing how listening with the spirit is so important!!!!!

I love you all so much please keep doing the small things they will change your life i promise!! 

                                            Keep on keepin' on!
                                             Love Elder Groen the one in Chile

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

I wouldn't rather be anywhere else!

I love everyone so much and i miss you guys but man i really do love it here despite the hard times the good ones make it all worth it!!!

 now all about my week to keep you updated!! 

tuesday we said goodbye to the three oldest Elders that were staying at Alcantra with us! then we went to the chilean Walmart called Liters! that was definitely a new experience! 

Wednesday we got our 3 new teachers for the next two weeks!! Hermano Marcel, Hermana Arcos, and Hermana Areneda. so that means we get three new investagators too! its kind of hard because we were just starting to get somewhere with our last investagators... but im very excited for the new ones! that night we had a fun game of "who can get on the top bunk without using there hands!"  im pretty lucky because there are 4 of us to our room and 4 to one shower all the other rooms have 6-8 per shower! 

Thursday we met all of the new missionaries and they all seem very nice they are all going to santiago Este (east) We also had an awesome lesson on obedience!  It reminded me of what elder Zwick and President Eyring said to me before I left!!! 100% obedience! 

Friday night my roomates and I got in trouble for not being on time in the mornings... but its hard because most mornings i sit around ready to go for 10-20 minutes just reading, while i wait for them to get ready. Oh well they are trying to get better and that is what matters! It was still a great day i played soccer for the first time here! and Hermana Arcos told me i need to bear my testimony more because the spirit is so strong when i do! that was really nice of her!! 

Saturday was good our lesson went really well and i understood almost everything that was said in spanish!! also we had a substitute hermano Alvarez and i found out he served in Long Beach California and one of his mission presidents was mari Bubert's Dad! she was my friend in junior high and left in 9th grade when they got called to that mission!!! he also taught us the reasons why people serve missions. Fear-Duty-blessings-charity!!! Good, better, best!!! i hope im here for the right reasons! 

Sunday was awesome just like always!! frist we watched a video from 2011 of Elder Holland addressing the missionaries in the provo MTC it was INCREDIBLE!!!! he talked about converting ourselves before converting our investagators, then he talked about peter and the principle of a change of heart and feeding his sheep! then we watched the movie On The Lords Errand about president monson! and talked about him with the class. then we had our sunday meetings and those were all awesome and about the Holy Ghost! then for FHE we watched a video about the Book of Mormon, Parley Pratt, and an italian man who found a book of mormon and wearched his whole life for the church that the book belonged to! I love the book of mormon and we should never take it for grantid! Monday! today Elder Curtis yelled from the shower "holy hot mother of my children!" as the water turned super hot coming out of the shower! today Elder christensen went home... its hard to see him go but he is doing it for the right reasons and wants to be here serving worthily and honestly so he is going to clear some things up and come back out! I can't imagine the courage it took to admit he had a problem im sure he struggled with that every day so im so proud of him for putting his savior first and using the atonement!!!

                                                                   Love Elder Groen!!!! 
p.s. I hope everybody is reading there scriptures!! EVERYBODY not just family!!!
Elder Prince and Elder Groen 

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

We can do hard things!

This week has been a roller coaster! last tuesday after i emailed we got to go to the temple and it is super pretty it is very small compared to the bountiful temple but it is just as pretty! I love that the gospel is the same around the world. 

        I am learning that sometimes i can let myself get annoyed very easily. and some of the elders are kind of unique but this week has been all about learning that none of what i am doing is about Ethan. So when i find myself annoyed or bugged i try to do service of somekind. Our investagators are really hard to teach sometimes especially for me because i have so much to say but my spanish holds me back and i can't communicate... but then today one of our teachers told me she was so grateful that i didn't let spanish hold me back. She said that it was so cool that sometimes i couldn't think of a word but i did my best to communicate the word with the investagator, but more important she could see the spirit in my eyes and my love for the investagator! that meant so much and showed me that the spirit is the most important not how well i can speak spanish!!! 

          you will all be interested to know that yes we did have an earthquake and it was awesome! but it was small and only lasted 6 seconds... none the less it was still super awesome and we freaked out! 

          I have to tell you about an elder named Elder Walker. he is probably the most unique person i have ever met. he has no intention of being friends with anyone else at all. One day this week he was saying why nobody likes him usually.(he seemed to be ok with that but i think really that was really hard for him.) then i said why what do you like to do. he said i like to run, play video games, sing, and play with my dog. Then i said look i like to do all of those things too. then i asked what kind of music he liked and he said he loves josh groban and i  yelled ME TOO!!!! then something cool happened he started to open up to me and our district and now he will laugh and talk with us! i am so glad that i could help him realize that he is loved because no one should ever feel like they are not loved. 

         I love all of you so much and i know that the lord will bless you all for your time and effort devoted to service! please always do the small things and everything else will take care of its self and also always remember that Jesus Christ Loves you and died for YOU!!! 

Yo se que el Jesucristo es nuestro salvador y obra missional es marvilloso! 

                                                 LOVE, Elder Groen the Elder
p.s. sorry if my spanish spelling was wrong or a little off im still getting there!

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

It is such a crazy ride!

first of all i flew with 32 other missionaries and i think 45 others to Chile! It was such a blessing to have so many others do that for the first time also! the plane ride to Atlanta was awesome i bore my testimony to a man named Hashi after he asked me a ton of questions about our church and our missions! I told him that My family is where some of my most happy times come from and that i love this gospel because it brings me so much joy and happiness! it was pretty cool to share my testimony before i even got to my mission! The whole plane ride was a fun experience the shrimp tacos in atlanta were so good! And even though it was long it was a good flight but the best part was when we were flying over the ocean and it was really cloudy. We were above the clouds and could see the sun coming up over the HUGE Andes Mountains and it was one of the prettiest things ive ever seen. 

           Getting to chile was pretty cool kind of crazy but we got to our new home on Alcantra street which is like 10 minutes from the MTC. There are 65 missionaries total and 32 of us live at the old mission home! Its super cool because that is where the Zwick family lived when they were mission presidents in Chile! So i am living in there home!!! anyway we got there and i found out my companion was Elder Curtis from California I like him so thats really good! The first day was really nice it was just to calm us down and make us feel like we were at home! I really do love the mission home its so cool! i sent a picture that one of the elders drew of the front of it! its super pretty! 

            Um Every day we wake up at around 7 we go down to the study room and we study for an hour then go to breakfast and work out. After our morning routine we drive to the CCM (MTC)! then we have classes to learn spanish and how to teach all day every day! our time in classrooms is split into three parts we have three teachers and they all help with spanish and learning how to teach. they are all really young like 23-27ish so it's pretty fun getting to know them really well!! And each teacher does a thing called progressive investigator where we pretend to teach a real investagator. the teachers pretend to be the investigator but their back story is a real story of a real person somewhere so when we pray for them we are really praying for someone that is looking into the gospel! but we have to teach in all spanish and it is SOO HARD! but i am learning that my spanish is not the most important thing it is listening to the spirit and knowing when to bear my testimony! 

          Sunday really is a day of rest i got to talk and learn in english all day! which was so nice for a change. Heavenly father really knew what he was doing when he made the sabboth! 

       Some days are harder than others but the times when i say something or understand someone in spanish are the best i just get super pumped up because it is just super awesome!! Yesterday was a really good day i felt like i learned a lot! And today has been good so far too i finally had some american food i ate a Big Mac for lunch haha! 

       there is another Elder in my district that i Love he is so funny and we act the same we are just kindred spirits! his name is Elder Prince he is from Hurricane and knows lincoln! but i really like him he always keeps us smiling! 

         my companion loves basketball and volley ball which is really fun! during work out time in the morning we play a lot of volley ball. Im trying to get more soccer in there! but he is nice he went to BYU for a year before his mission. he loves to be really prepared which is good but we are learning to let the spirit into our lessons more. because sometimes we just follow the plan and don't even listen to the spirit! 

     The food is pretty good. breakfast is kind of wierd its always yogurt with ceral which i don't really like... but its ok im learning to like it more and more! they cook a lot of chicken for dinner and lunch and a lot of rice too! the deserts are wierd i like american pudding much better! its just different enough to be kind of wierd but nothing has been just aboslutely crazy yet. 

ok if you have any questions ask away and i will answer them either now or next week!  

Love Elder Groen the first!!! haha

Ethan's first district

Back Street Missionaries
Elder Curtis & Elder Groen (1st companions)

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

First day and lots of flying!

I am here in one peace! It is still like a dream i cant believe that it is happening! I dont have very long to type so i have lots of stories and things to tell you next time i get on a computer! But one thing i am in the old mission home that is rooming some of the missionaries now and it is the home that Elder Zwick lived in with his family when they lived here!!!  I hope dalton is safe and in provo by now! Love you all so much! 

                                                                                       Love Elder Groen the first of the two twins
p.s. having a missionary tag is just about the coolest thing EVER!!!!!!!