We have an elder Rivera that is from Ecuador. He came into the mission directly from Ecuador bypassing the MTC here. Somehow he fell through the cracks and never received a Carnet. So in order to get one he had to be taken out of the country and brought back in. We decided it was easier to go to Chile than any other country. So we flew to Tacna on Friday, stayed the night at hotel Corona Real and the next morning drove to the border of Peru/Chile to immigration. March 3, 1961 I started my mission in Tacna. At that time there were 30 members and the city had about 10,000 people. Today there are over 10,000 members and the city has a population of over 250,000. There were only two things that I still recognized, the town square with the arch and the Catholic cathedral.
The Turista Hotel now called the Gran Hotel is still there and our branch, where we lived was right across the street from the hotel which now is occupied with several shops.
On Saturday our driver took us to the border where I paid $332 dollars for elder Rivera to get his Visa. It was in this building at the border. From there we went over into Chile and the city of Arica. The first person that I ever baptized was a convert that we took from Tacna to Arica as they had a baptismal font. As I started in Tacna the city of Arica, Chile was opened and I was present when they had their first convert baptisims.