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We are still collecting information on the Chile Santiago East Mission. If you served in this mission and are willing to share your experiences with us, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org
Snapshot of Chile – Spanish is the national language of Chile, though other indigenous languages such as Mapudungun, Aymara, and Quechua are also present. Chilean spanish is unique in the way it drops the final syllables and “s” sounds from words. The Roman Catholic Church is the largest religion in Chile, accounting for about 60% of the population. The LDS church claims about 3% of the population, though many are inactive. Several other Protestant churches are also present, and about 18% of the population is irreligious. Modern Chilean culture primarily mixes Spanish and indigenous influences, though the south also has some influence from German immigrants. A wide range of music is popular in Chile, including rock, hip hop, and traditional folk music. Soccer is Chile’s most popular sport, though basketball and tennis are also somewhat popular and rodeos are popular events, especially in rural areas. Skiing is also practiced in some southern areas of the country. Chile is a large consumer of meat and bread, and rice and pasta are common side dishes. Empanadas and hot dogs are popular fast food items. Other popular dishes in Chile include asado (a type of barbecue, in southern Chile often made with lamb meat) and cazuela (a beef, potato, and pumpkin stew).
The Church is very strong in the Santiago area, where the majority of Chile’s members of the Church live. Within the Santiago Chile East mission there are 10 stakes, with most congregations located within Santiago itself. The Santiago Chile Temple is also located within mission boundaries, with a CES Institute located on the same block as the temple.
Lunch is typically the largest meal of the day in Chile. Chicken and rice dishes are very popular, though corn and beans are also commonly served as parts of meals. Other popular dishes include pastel de choclo (a layered meat pie containing ground corn, beef, eggs, and other ingredients), and cazuela (a type of meat stew that also contains pumpkin and potato). Chile also has many street vendors that sell a variety of foods, such as empanadas, Chilean hot dogs (like an American hot dog, but with a greater variety of toppings), and sopaipillas.
Missionaries in the Chile Santiago East Mission get around either by walking or using public transportation. The city of Santiago has an extensive public transportation system that includes buses, colectivos, taxis, a metro system, and commuter rail. However, it’s a good idea to save your money and only use public transportation when you really need to, such as when traveling longer distances or when you are short on time.
The eastern half of Santiago is much more economically developed than the western half of the city. Even though the part of Santiago covered by the mission area is generally safer and more prosperous, missionaries should still be aware of their surroundings and know what areas to avoid after dark. Stray dogs are also common.
The area is also prone to earthquakes. Information on how to be prepared for earthquakes can be found at http://www.ready.gov/earthquakes
It is important to use good manners in your interactions with the Chilean people. Being respectful and polite (such as using formal verb forms in conversation) will help you gain the hearts of those with whom you interact. When introducing yourself to the head of the household, giving a firm handshake and maintaining eye contact are important.
The Chilean schedule is very different than that of the United States! Many people stay home in the morning, making it a good time to find people to teach. It is common practice to have a “siesta” after lunch (which is the main meal of the day), during which many people take naps and businesses shut down.
It is common in Chilean spanish to drop the final syllable and “s” sounds from words. It may take a little time to get used to this accent!
“bacán” – cool
“cachaí” – get it?
The Santiago area is home to a wide variety of interesting locations! Within the city are several parks, universities, and historic buildings and monuments. The mountains east of Santiago are home to several ski resorts and natural monuments such as the El Morado Natural Monument located near San José de Maipo.
Cristobal Colon 6824
Las Condes, Santiago Region Metropolitana
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