Monday, October 28, 2013

Brazil - Week 26

Yeah so I'm still trying to process that I have been on a mission for 7 months already!!! I only have 11 months left! That's only like 11 fast Sundays!! 8o

Tuesday- We visited with Maria Oneide, Marciel, Leonardo, and Amanda and read 2 Nephi 31 with them and talked about the gospel of Christ. It was really good!! We then visited with Katia's mom Lauriçe with Irmã Josefa it was good but there was a lot of interruptions and we need to teach the lesson again we think. But after that everything else fell through... :/

Wednesday- We did weekly planning and it was really good! I fell a lot more organized! (haha I know organized ;) )And then we visited with Janie and taught the 1st lesson (restoration) and it was super good at the end we really felt the spirit and we know that she did too. Then when we were leaving we got a phone call from Sister Clark (sister training leader) and she told us that her companion Sister Carvalho was doing a split in a city 4 hours away and they didn't realize until they got home that she has they keys to the house and they need a place to stay for the we had a sleepover! ;) 

Thursday- We had a zone meeting and interviews with President Reber. He is awesome! He started off just saying how proud he is of me and that he got a text form our Bishop thanking him for assigning the Elders and Sisters he did in that ward because we are really blessing the ward and area. It is so nice to know that people realize how much we are working and really are grateful for the work we do. Sometimes you really just need a thank you. *My invite for everyone reading this; Go to the missionaries in your ward and thank them for their work and sacrifices. It means the world to know that the members care and are grateful for what we do!* AND I GOT MY PACKAGE AND 2 LETTERS!!! Thanks SOOOOOOO much everyone!!!!! I loved every bit!!! It really made my week!!!!!! 

Friday- We started off the day teaching this lady (who reminds me of Heather *my aunt*) who sells really good juice!! Her name is Walleria. She is really awesome and really is interested in learning about the church. It was a good lesson. Then after lunch we visited an inactive member Vanessa and realized she doesn't really have a testimony. So we are going to start working with her. We then visited with Luci-Mar, she is just awesome. :) 

Saturday- So today we got a really awesome call!! (Back story- So we have started putting Book of Mormons (with the church's address and hours and our cell number) in mail boxes) A guy named Anderson called us and said that he found a Book of Mormon in his mail box with this number in it and he wants to know what this book is!! Yay!! So we will be visiting with him this next week!! :D We then visited with an ex-investigator from 2 yrs. ago named Vanessa. It was a super lesson and she accepted baptism without any problems!! So we are going to prepare her to be baptized on Nov. 3!! :D It was awesome!! We then visited with a new invest. named Lourdes. And this is where it gets sad. She told us that her son is against all religions that isn't his own and he found the Book of Mormon we gave her and ripped it up and burned it. My heart broke when she told us that. :'( And it all went down hill from there. We planned on doing our English class but no one showed up. I was really upset and disappointed. I don't know what more we could have done to advertise. But I will do SOMETHING more and try again this week. :(

Sunday- So today was really great! It was the birthday of our investigator, Eva, and we threw her a surprise party at her neighbor's house!! They are members and so they invited her and her family to a Family night and when she got there we actually had the elder that started teaching her there and I used the cake y'all sent me and candles and balloons and the crepe streamers. It was super great!!! She LOVED it!! And she was soooo surprised!! She almost cried when she told us that no one has ever thrown her a surprise party before!! But we were happy to do it and the birthday supplies went to a good cause!!! :) 

Monday- So today was AWESOME!!! All of the sisters in Cuiabá got together with President and Sister Reber and they took us to the water fall and the stone in the center of South America! It was so much fun!! It was the closet thing we can get right now to a "Day out with Dad"! :) And he kept calling us his daughters. Even to strangers!! They was this group of people on the trail to the water fall when we were leaving and they said something to President (I think they were asking for directions) and he said something like "follow the line of my daughters." :) It really makes you feel good to know you have a "Dad" close by.....but it makes me miss my real Dad more!!! But my camera died sooo I have to wait for the other sisters to send me all of the pictures!!! But I sent the few I had!!! It was super awesome!!! :)
Sister Emma Marion
Birthday Princess Crown from sister Tori!

The center of South America with Sister Goncalves

Center of South America with all the sisters in Cuiaba area
(see Monday entry)

Monday, October 21, 2013

Brazil - Week 25

Monday- So Sister Kimball left crying. It was a sad time. But I know that she will like it in the south!
And my new companion is Sister Gonçalves she is from Santa Catarina in the south of Brasil. She is really cool and has like a British accent...but she speaks Portuguese....its hard to explain but its cool!! :D 

Tuesday- We visited with this inactive member and we were talking with him to see why he stopped going and we realized it was because he believes in reincarnation.....and the church doesn' yeah...we gave him a pamphlet about the plan of salvation. We then visited with Luci-mar and Jeanny and read 2 Nephi 31 with them and talked about the gospel of Christ and baptism. But Jeanny says that she wants to wait until after the baby is born to get baptized because she wants to know for sure that these feelings are her own and not just because of the baby. We then visited Katia and taught her the first lesson it went well!! :)

Wednesday- It really wasnt a very productive day. We had to go to the market because Sister Gonçalves and I didn't have time to get her food on P-Day but we taught Rosangela who is a referral from the was okay. They just don't have a desire to go to church...

Thursday- We talked with Grizielle and her kids and Rebeca today about the commandments. It was good; the only thing stopping them from getting baptized is their dad. We then talked with Katia's mom and marked a day to teach her and then Luci-Mar and asked what she wants to learn about (temples she said) and then we visited with Maria Oneide and her kids and  when we were visiting with them we asked  Amanda if she was going to go to church sunday and she said yes and so we jokingly said "and one day get baptized right??" and she said "Yeah I want to be baptized Sunday." We were SO surprized and excited for her!!! She has already been to church and had the same lessons as the others so we told her she could and she was. It was the best thing ever!  We then had a meeting where we met the new elder, Elder Wright from Idaho Falls! 

Friday- So we finished our weekly planning today and the visited with Maria Oneide and Amanda and Leonardo and Maciel and did the baptism records and then we visited with Luci-mar and talked with her about temples! We then visited with an ex-investigator of the Elders that only stopped because a lady at church told her that she couldn't come to church in pants.... >:[ YOU CAN! We were a bit upset with that lady when we read that. But we visited with her and she seems really excited!! Her son is already an active member! So we just gotta help her get over her embarrasment! But we marked a date to visit with her again and she said that she would make us bread!! :D

Saturday- We had the baptism interviews and then we went to an appointment in the other area (because her husband doesn't want her talking disscussions from elders because they are young men) and SHE WASN'T THERE X{ It was a waste of R$3(for the bus pass)!!!!! But then we came back and made invites for church and we decided to teach English for a service project/way of getting new investigators!! Its good we have 3 Americans here. Its gonna be fun!! 

Sunday- SO we were almost late to church today! Because of the hour change...we thought the cell phone would change by itself....but nope. Luckily we got there in time and we called the Elders at 8:30 (when church starts) and they were just leaving their I explained about the hour change and they were freaking out. It was funny. :) We then had 2 baptisms!!! Leonardo and Amanda!!! :D We then were talking with Maria Oneide (their mom) and she said that now that their souls are saved she will get married and get baptized!! :D It was a great time!!! :D
Sister Emma Marion

Baptism of Amanda and Leonardo Awesome Day!! (see Thursday entry)
New companion, Sister Goncalves

Monday, October 14, 2013

Brasil - Week 24

Wow this transfer went by so fast!!

Monday- So Monday night we met this lady when we were getting off the bus and she just started talking to us about the church and we were like oh cool! So we kept talking and then she tells us that actually she is really happy to meet us because her pastor told her the other day that she will meet 2 foreigners that will have an invite for her and a message. 0.0 She then met this point she started crying and told us her life story and how God really has saved her and stuff like that. We were like WOW!! So we gave her a BoM and marked a time to visit with her. 

Tuesday- So we got 2 referrals today from the Bishop's wife and so we visited them and marked a day to visit. But one of the referrals is her cousin who has already been to church so we also had a mini lesson with her. After that we went to visit Grizielle and her 3 kids and niece who have a baptism date for Sunday and we watched the restoration video with them and we talked about testimonies. It was a good time! :) We then visited with Maria Oneide and her son Maciel who has a baptism date for Sunday and her 2 other kids. We talked about the gospel of Christ which talks about faith, repentance, baptism, gift of the holy ghost, and enduring to the end. And to explain better about repentance we did a little activity where we had a glass of water to represent our bodies and we used my red Kool-aid (thanks family!!) to represent sin and explained that when we sin our bodies are dirty (insert kool-aid in water here) BUT we can always repent so we can be clean again (pour bleach in the kool-aid water here)! It went well! It was a good little activity for them!! Then we had a mini lesson with Cleberson and then with Mialon and Adriana where we talked about conference and showed them where they could watch the conference talks! 

Wednesday- SO this was a crazy day!!! SO our district meeting got moved to Thursday so we decided to do our weekly planning so we started and then went to lunch and then went to visit Dalva who is this awesome ice cream lady! She is like the sweetest person ever! She stays open longer just for us if we want ice cream that day and always is supporting us! So we decided to teach her. But when we got there she was getting a card machine to use in her shop so she asked if we could come back later, we agreed and went home to finish weekly planning. So when we got inside it started POURING DOWN RAIN like a lot!! So we were happy we were inside and not trying to work right then. But when it started raining our District leader called and asked if we were caught in the rain and we said no and started talking to him when Sister Kimball gets up to get water from the kitchen and then she starts screaming "OUR HOUSE IS FLOODING!!! SISTER!!! Our house is FLOODING!!!" So I ran to the kitchen and sure enough it was starting to flood. What happened was we have this part of our house that is outside for laundry and it has a drain on the floor that doesn't work so water just stays, so when it started raining out the wazoo the water wasn't draining and was just filling up outside and then overflowing into the house! SO Elder John was on the phone when we were realizing this so he was all like "What?! Sisters?! Whats happening?!?!" Because all he really is hearing is us screaming! So I tell him that the house is flooding so he tells me "Sister just get a bucket and start shoveling water out!!" So I hand the phone to Sister Kimball and try to get the back door open (which was stuck)! So I'm pulling and tugging on the door and Sister Kimball is talking to Elder John and then she gets the squeegee and starts pushing the water out the front door and into the bathroom so it won't get into our room or on our stuff. Finally she gets it good enough and she comes to help me pry the door open. So I ran outside and she went back to the squeegeeing. So I grabbed one bucket and put it under the sink (which leaks...a lot...) to catch water there and then the other bucket and started throwing water over the side of the house. This went on for about 2 hours in the pouring rain. When finally I got the water level down and the rain started stopping I went back inside the house. I looked like I just took a bath. I was SOAKED! And Sister Kimball was a mess too! I had to change all of my clothes. There was only one very tiny part of my shirt that wasn't wet!! Needless to say we missed a few appointments....but they understood...

Thursday- So today was our district meeting. It was good. We talked about gifts of the Spirit. Like which ones we think we have and which ones we would like and how we can develop them! We then visited with Grizielle and the kids again and talked about the Law of Chastity and the Word of Wisdom....well actually WE didn't really was actually Grizielle's member aunt that explained. But it was good!! We then did their baptism records!! After that we went to visit with Maria Oneide and did the same thing!! But without Grizielle's aunt. Then we taught the Bishop's cousin (Rafaela) about the restoration and she accepted baptism!! :D Then we visited with Grizielle's sister Giovanna to see if Rebeca (the niece we have been teaching) can be baptized or not. She said she could! So we did her baptism record too!!

Friday- So today we had just a short visit with Grizielle and the kids and Maria Oneide and her kids to see how they were and then we have the "end of transfer cleaning day"!! Our house was SO clean after!! I+But it took ALL day!! We started about 3pm and ended at 9!! 

Saturday- YAY BIRTHDAY!!! :D So when I woke up today Sister Kimball had me walk blindfolded into our study room. Turns out she got up at 3am and put up birthday signs that she made every night this week when I was in the shower!! It was SOOO sweet!!! :} After lunch we had Maciel's baptism interview!! Then we had to find baptism clothes for all the children! We only had one.... 0.o But it got worked out. We then met with Katia, she is really sweet but really sad. Her husband died 4 months ago and now it is only her and her 2 daughters who are 11 and 9. It was just a mini lesson but it was good! They said that they like it when we visit! :} And that they will go to church tomorrow!! We then visited with Cleberson. We read 2 Nephi 31 with him. It was good! :)

Sunday- So at 6:40 this morning we got a text from Grizielle saying that the kids dad won't let them get baptized or go to church. We were very heartbroken. But Rebeca could still get baptized! So we hurried up and got dressed and went to the church hoping to see Rebeca and Giovanna there, but they weren't. So we dropped our stuff and almost RAN to her house 15 minutes away. They didn't answer the door or their phone. We were really sad but hurried back to the church. They never showed up. BUT Luci-Mar did! And Maria Oneide and her kids!! SO Luci-Mar got the gift of the Holy Ghost and Maciel got baptized!! And Leonardo (Maria Oneide's other son) can get baptized this next Sunday!!! After the baptism we went to Giovanna and Rebeca's house and Rebeca said that her mom was sleeping and they didn't go to church because they got up late. Huhhh. We'll keep working with them. After that we visited with Maciel and Maria Oneide and Leonardo and read 3 Nephi 11 with them. It was good! We then visited with Luci-mar and taught Jeanny (her daughter) about the restoration. It was really good! I am almost positive that she will get baptized. 

AND TRANSFERS!!!! Sister Kimball is being transferred to Dourados, which is in Mato Grosso do Sul. She will actually live in the same house as Sister Luca!!! I will be staying here and my new companion will be the Sister that Sister Puckett finished training! Her name is Sister Gonçalves. (I think that's how you spell it.... :/) I'm really sad that Sister Kimball is leaving but I know that she will have  GREAT time in the south!! I'm really gonna miss her!! 
Sister Emma Marion
 Maciel's baptism

Flooded apartment!
(see details on Wednesday entry above)

Happy Birthday, Sister Marion!

Birthday surprise from sweet, Sister Kimball
(see Saturday entry above)

Monday, October 7, 2013

Brasil - Week 23

Tuesday- We had a pretty good day today. We had 6 contacts and 5 lessons! One of our contacts is a family and the son actually has schizophrenia. 0.o BUT he really has a strong faith in Christ. Its awesome! We also met with Helazangela who is the daughter of a member family and the only nonmember in her house. She has already met with the Elders a couple of times but she is like a brick wall. And her mom is always present in the lessons so this time we asked to teach her alone. Her mom agreed and so we started talking with her and asked her if she really wants this or not. She said no. But we talked more with her and in the end we got her to pray with us, something she doesn't even do with her family. One day she will be baptized. She just needs to want it first.
Wednesday- DISTRICT MEETING DAY!! It was really cool again!! Elder John had 2 boxes of chocolate and gave one bar to each missionary and put us all in a different room and told us to hide it good and then we will switch rooms and find the candy. "Your area is from the chapel to this room here and the chocolate bars represent the Elect of God. Go!" So off we went in to the rooms where we saw the other missionaries in and we found the candy and then Sister Kimball and I went and helped the Elders in our room find the candy. At the end of this 5 minutes Elder John told us all to stop and then asked the question "why didn't you look in all of your area? You only went where you knew there was elects but you didn't look in ALL your area. I'm the "Bishop" of this ward and you can ask for help. You can have a few more minutes. GO!" So Sister Kimball and I asked him where the candy was and if he could go with us to find them and the Elders went back in the rooms we were in and Elder John showed us where the candy was and so we got a bunch and then the elders came in and started asking for "referrals" it was really a great lesson. Why don't we ask for more help? Then we got to eat the candy :} After that we went and made cute little invites for conference to pass out to people!! :D
Thursday- So today all of our appointments fell through at the last minute except 1!! This one was a family, Adriana & Mailo & their 2 sons Breno and Samuel. They are really great and really are interested, especially Mailo. AND Adriana Mailo and Breno accepted baptism!! (Not Samuel because he is only 6...) But they didn't accept a date but I really think that they will one day! It was great!! They really are awesome!!

Friday- We visited with Grizielle and her 4 kids (well 3 and 1 niece...) and read part of the book of Mormon with them. We then visited with Luci-mar a bit and helped her make food for her daughter, Jeanny's baby shower. We then visited with a new family that is friends with Luci-mar, Maria Onede and her 3 kids Amanda, Leonardo, and Maciel. All 3 kids accepted baptism on the 13th!! We then visited the family we found Tuesday (not Helazangela). It was good, we just taught the first lesson, but they seem interested!
Saturday- CONEFERENCE!!! :D So we went to the stake center for conference and it was really good only problem was it was all in Portuguese and I couldn't really understand. :( It was sad. I understood a few parts and they were great but the whole talk....nope. :( And then none of our people came today. But afterward we went to the baby was more like sitting at a restaurant to eat. It was odd. But they were SO happy we were there so it made up for the oddness....
Sunday- CONFERENCE AGAIN!! I really love conference now!! Just sayin'!! BUT same problem as Saturday. Couldn't understand. :( And no investigators. :'( AND THEN afterwards we were talking to some Elders and they said "Oh Sisters why didn't you just ask to watch conference in English in the secretary's office?" We about cried at this point. We were so upset. Then we called Sister Puckett and she got to watch it in English. Yeah. We are still a bit tender about this...BUT they said that we can use our study times to watch conference in English! So there's that!
Monday- So this morning we started watching conference in English!! IT WAS GREAT!!!!!!!!! I got up to the talk from Edward Dube. I will start there next time! :) Nossa! I just gotta say it again! CONFERENCE WAS GREAT!!!!!! :D I just want to print out every talk just to read them again and again!!! :)
Sister Emma Marion

This is a fruit called jaca (jack-a). It is horrible to the taste. It tastes like a slimy slightly off banana. :{

MTC Friends (currently serving in the same zone)
Sister Kimball, Sister Puckett, Sister Marion
Washing dishes with Sister Kimball is always an adventure!

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Brasil - Week 22


Tuesday- We visited Adrielli and talked about baptism with her, trying to find out if she really has a desire or not. She said she wants to be baptized but not yet. So we are going to work with her on this. We then left her house and found a family with 3 women and we taught a short little principle lesson with them. It went well and they want us to come back. We then visited with Luci-mar with Irmâ Jacqueline it was good, we started teaching the commandments. Today was the Word of Wisdom. It was really amazing. She drinks coffee every morning but when we taught her about this she was like "Yeah okay that's fine. I will buy cevada instead." Like no problem at all! It was great!!! 

Wednesday- Today we had a district meeting that was really great too!!! Elder John told us "Okay now I want everyone to sit in a different part of the room away from each other where you can receive revelation and bring a pen and the paper I gave you and something to write on. Now the Savior commanded you to write a letter to a future missionary, Sisters write to Sisters and Elders write to Elders. And write them about missions and bare your testimony and share a scripture that has helped you." We then wrote the letter. Mine talked about the importance of not losing your faith, because missions are super hard, but they are also filled with joy. I shared Moroni 7:33 and I also quoted Gamme " Pray like it all depends on the Lord, and work like it all depends on you." We then gave the finished letters to Elder John and sat back down. He then had us all facing front and he went to the back one by one and took our tags and put them in an envelope with the letter and told us not to look at the front, and to sit back down. After we all did this he went up to the front and pulled out a mission call packet and told us "Imagine that this is the day of the call and your letter is in it." He pulled out our call from the prophet and called us up one by one and we read the letters, that were really to ourselves and a part of the call. It was a really great experience because you were building your self up. Like a self pep talk! We then left and went to visit Luci-mar and we took her to the church and taught her there with Irmã Marbe about the Law of Chastity. After that we walked an hour to another neighborhood and taught a 15 yr old girl whose family is all members except her and her parents want her to get baptized. But we were talking with her and really she just wants to be a 15 yr old girl. But we are working with her now on prayer, so she can have that connection with her Father in Heaven. The rest will come on day but as we explained to her and to her mom, the choice is hers. If she doesn't want to come back, "okay. we'll see you the next time we have lunch with your family." But we also told her that we want to be her friends too. And she agreed to let us come back. But we are going to try and teach her alone, we think it will help her better not to have her mom hovering during the lesson so she can really talk about her problems. We then walked BACK to the neighborhood we were in (1hr away) and visited with this new investigator family. Adriana, Mailo, Breno, and Samuel. We didn't have a lot of time to teach so we taught an "intro" to the restoration lesson. It was really great and we think they are really interested. :)

Thursday- We visited with Grizielle, who actually is an inactive member that wants to come back and she has 3 kids (Ana Carolina 14, Samuel 11, and Marcos 9)and wants them to be baptized. She found us Monday in the street and called to us from the other side of the road and told us all this and to visit her this week. So we were like "Uhhh yeah! Okay sure!!" So we met with her and her 3 kids and her mom (also inactive) and her niece (Rebecca, who is like 8) and so we taught the restoration to them and they all (all 4 kids) accepted baptism!!! So we marked 4 dates today!!!! 8o It was great!! We then visited with Luci-mar with Irmã Yasmine and talked about tithing and she was SOO excited to pay tithing!!! Seriously this lady is GREAT!!! She said that someone in her family should. It was a great time. We then met with Heloiza with Irmã Kethy (Kaite) and we were going to teach about the gospel of Christ but instead Kethy helped resolve some of Heloiza's problems. Turns out that Kethy was Catholic and had the same questions that Heloiza has when she was learning about the gospel. It really helped having her there!!

Friday-So today we visited with a recent convert, Maria Teresa, and taught her about the Plan of Salvation. It went really well but she only is like 13 so to really understand it will take some time. But after that we visited with Maria José and talked about the Book of Mormon. During this lesson we asked her if she believed us and she said yes. She said "I have this feeling at the top of my stomach but it is way deep in my body and it just tells me that everything you are saying is 100% true. And I will read this book." We then asked her to be baptized and she accepted. :) It was a great lesson. We then visited with Luci-mar and finished off the commandments. It was really great. Then we tried to visit this referral from a member but she wasn't there so we did contacts and actually found this lady, Rosie, that was actually taking the discussions from the Elders before us that they didn't tell us about or put in the area book. So we talked to her a bit and share a scripture and a prayer and marked a day to visit more with her. Thank you Holy Ghost! 

Saturday- So in the mission we have whats called a "Padrão Semanal" (according to Google translator: Weekly Standard) where you need 25 contacts, 15 lessons with out members, 8 with members, 3 baptism dates, 3 investigators at church, and 10 new invest, so we were talking Friday night and we realized that we were actually really close to beating the Padrão. So our goal for today and tomorrow was to get all the contacts and lessons we needed. SO today we left our house a little bit earlier and taught a man in the tire shop next door to our house a mini lesson, we then went to lunch and did contacts at just about every house we could, then after lunch we did the same thing as we went to visit Rosangela who was a referral from the Patriarch here and he met us there and we taught her, her husband Valmir, and her 3 kids Lucas, Liciela, and Ligrecia. We taught the the restoration and invited them to be baptized and all 5 agreed...we then left and went to visit Luci-mar again but with Bishop this time. We really just had a mini lesson and get to know Bishop time. We then left and our next appointment canceled on us and so did the one after that. SO we did more contacts and mini lessons and then at 7 we went to Núbia and Marcelo's house for his birthday party and then went home! 
Sunday- SO today we ran out of minutes on the cell phone so we really couldn't call our investigators to remind them about church so we were super stressed!! BUT 9 came!! AND after church WE HAD A BAPTISM!!!! WOO HOO!!!! Luci-mar!! It was super great! Afterwards we asked her how she feels and she said "Free." It was super special!! We then went to lunch and tried to teach after but no one was home but we got more contacts in. We then went to Luci-mar's house and had popcorn with her and her family and gave her a picture frame with a picture of all of us in it and then had a mini lesson with her and her family. After that our next lesson fell through so we did more contacts and mini lessons. SO when we got home and closed our numbers we had......11 baptism dates, 9 investigators in sacrament, 10 lessons with members, 15 with out, 20 new investigators, and 26 contacts!!!! :D We were SUPER excited!!! We met the Padrão Semanal!! 
Monday- So our District leader called and she that he was really sorry but he didn't know last night but there is actually a new rule in the mission that you can't count baptism dates 2 weeks in advance so because all of our dates are for 10/13 we can't count them until next week. So we actually didn't get the Padrão Semanal. It was really heartbreaking. We were....still kinda are....really sad. Like disappointed sad. But we know that we just need to get back up and try again next week!! 
Sister Emma Marion