Monday, October 29, 2018

October 29, 2018 -- Morada dos Passaroes (Vitoria da Conquista)

this week was a wet one! its been rainy and overcast all week long! but it was a solid first week of the transfer and we are excited cuz we have 2 greenies in our zone! one is actually Elder Green from Lehi, but i havent met the other yet. 

monday we visited Fernanda (less active member) and Maria and her fam. We are still teaching Geovane and Angela and they are progressing slowly. I think Angela got a little discouraged because she wasnt able to be baptized with her mom because of her marriage situation and geovane is just kinda your average 21 year old. He loves LOL and video games so sometimes is a little hard for us to get his attention, i should probably ask mom and dad for tips hahaha. his baptismal goal is coming up soon and we are praying everything keeps getting better! this week president also gave us new goals and mission standards and something he spoke and has been reminding us about are our contacts. we have been doing more contacts than normal this week and its been super cool! we have talked to lots of new people and lots of interesting people and lots of people that thought we were interesting but lots that werent interested. life is about interests.

from tuesday forward is where the rain really got ahold of us. about 60% of our area is dirt roads so it was nice and muddy, and to make things better the days when it rained hardest were the days where people least answered the door! this week was also the 2nd/final round of presidential elections here in brazil and tbh the political season has really reminded me of trump hilary. its one of the only things people have wnated to talk about. this week we caught up with tainara and have been teaching her about the book of mormon. we have had some cool lessons with her and the other members of the family. she accepted a baptism date and was able to explain to us all about the chapter we left her to read. update on Neílson, we marked 2 different days with him but he canceled both days because of work things coming up. 

friday morning we actually had a super cool lesson with taina and ornelia and fam about the restoration. they had been visited by the missionaries years ago but the missionaries just never showed up again! we had contacted ornelia a few days ago in the street but she didnt tell us the missionaries had visited her before. we had some visits planned in a different neighborhood but we felt strongly that we should try and go find her house, because she only gave us part of her address, once we arrived we had a really nice lesson and they accepted all our invitations that we made them. its so nice to see how the Lord guides us.

saturday we went to the baptism that the sisters had in the afternoon and we had family night at monicas home with her family and stella/thabata and stella gave the message! its been so cool to see her grow as a member since she was baptized just a few weeks ago and she gave a really nice message about the restoration and bore a nice testimony. it makes me so happy to see people change their lives for the better because of the teachings of Christ and living prophets. we also went to another area to do some baptism interviews for the elders!

sunday was also quite rainy. from 7:30-9 it was just downpour but we were able to get to church ontime with the less active family. unfortunately (becasue of the rain and the election, all brazilians are obligated to vote) not a whole lot of our investigators came out to church. this week i have been studying a lot in 3 nephi where Christ appears to the people in the americas. its so cool to read and compare with the scriptures that he references from the old testament and the teachings he gives that he had taught the Jews. there are subtle but interesting differences that give us a little bit of a different perspective or way to think about his teachings! and in chapter 27 he lays out so clearly his doctrine and the Fathers plan for us. it truly is a plan of hope and happiness!

Elder Prince

Wednesday, October 24, 2018

October 22, 2018 -- Morada dos Passaroes

[Today is transfer day, and Sam is staying in the same area with the same companion for his last transfer.]

monday was a good p day we had a family night at a members home! 

tuesday was a normal day we had some cool lessons but the best part was to finish off the night! we were walking to an appointment suuuuper far away and it was already late so it looked like we were gonna get home at like 11. then some member was passing by and gave us a ride to the home! we were able to have a super good lesson with Patricia Antonio Lucas and Lane. they are a part member less active family that we have started teaching. we were able to read the book or mormon with them and we felt such a good spirit reading about the Saviors visit to the americas. Lucas (son) undertood that he needed to get baptized and his parents felt the need to take him to church! sunday they were all there and loved the meetings! apparently lucas was reminding his dad all week about the visit to church they had marked! it was so special. we were also able to get home before too late haha. 

wednesday and thursday we had our district meeting/weekly planning and spent the days in a differnt part of our area trying to find some less actives and new investigators. it was fun but not as fruitful as we had hoped. we were able to meet with Luceni about her smoking problem but she is having a lot of trouble stopping and she also has slowed down on her reading. its just too bad!

friday and saturday we had sucess in follwing up with some investigators and members to get ready for sunday. we were able to see the fruits sunday when we had some new faces in church and some faces that hadnt been there in awhile. Also to my surprise Karen and fam from Bom Jesus da Lapa has moved to conquista and lives very close to the chapel so we can start teaching them again. They have been going to church for about a year now but still havent taken the step of baptism, but how many times does an old investigator move into an area where a missionary that taught them is serving? No such thing as coincidence and I think the cards are starting to turn in our favor! im excited to get to visit them again. 

in church we talked a lot about mosiah 3:19 and humbling ourselves! humility is so important and helps each one of us grow closer to the Lord. WE must learn to submit to the Lords will, not so he can be happy but so that we can be happy. He does everything for our benefit!!

Elder Prince

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

October 15, 2018 - Morada dos Passaros -- Vitoria da Conquista

our week was pretty good! 

tuesday we had lunch SUUUPER far away but the bus doesnt pass there so we walked and it was at like 10:30 in the morning i felt like i was in high school again hahah. we had some good lessons. my favorite was teaching this old lady about the church. she has a niece who is a member and was full of fun questions and comments about the church that other people have made to her (you baptize dead people?? you have dances in the church??? you listen to music other than the hymns??) just imagine trying to tell an extremely religious little old lady about it. we also worked with luceni about her goal to try and stop smoking so her children will move back in with her and when we got to her house we couldnt smell any smoke at all! i was so happy and she is starting to look so much more healthy. 

wednesday was a nice district meeting and we ate lunch at a members house that we are pretty good friends with. right when we got there he sprayed some pepper gas (hes a military police) so we walked in the door and just about died from coughing so much hahahah he got a kick out of it. we taught a new investigator Gustavo, a firm agnostic, and had a way cool discussion about the creation of the world and all that God and his plan have provided for us! by the time we finished he seemed really happy and like he had been touched by our visit and was starting to open up his heart. it was so cool to be able to read the scriptures with him and have him ask questions and really think and open up his mind about what we explained to him. we also followed up with maria in preparation for her baptism and her trip to her parents farm went well. we were a little worried her family might say something because they are all very firm in another church but nothing was said and her mom actually pleaded for a book of mormon for her to study! where they live doesnt have church so it was so cool to be able to give a book of mormon! the gospel is spreading!! we ended up readin alma 32 in the dark becasue the electricty was out! it was fun. 

thursday our lunch fell thru at the last minute and left us out to dry. so we made food at home. we had a few good lessons and invited some people to our integration night at the church. when we got there we were surprised that none of the Relief Society presidency was there (they were in charge) and our message plan got thrown off because the dvd player broke so we had an impromptu debate about some parables haha i love the parables of Christ. then we had a super fun game. i forgot what its called [Charades] but we were acting out scenes from the scriptures and trying to guess what they were. sadly my team lost because they weren't able to understand me pretending to be samuel the lamanite. I was up on a table with the scriptures i almost lost it hahahha but its just a game right??

friday we filled up the font and had some interviews. it was a rather bland day with some bright spóts! we had to go to the other side of the city to do one interview and hurry back so the DL could do our interview. we also had a bunch of members telling us they probably wouldnt be able to come to the baptism saturday (apparently saturday morning isnt good??) 

when we rolled in with maria saturday morning the church was filled with members! it was such a pleasant surprise. the meeting went very well. we had a few nice lessons over the weekend and found some sweet part-member families to teach and reactivate! i have really been loving this area.

Elder Prince, Maria, Elder Machado, and ?
we watched Elder Rasbands talk a few times with some less active members and investigators and it brought such an amazing spirit. The way he talks about banishing our fears is awesome! truly faith in Christ and love for everyone can help us understand and take away our fears! everyone should give it another listen, I am so grateful for our living prophets and apostles, called to guide us in these latter days! They are truly guided by our Eternal Head, Jesus Christ. this is His Church!

Elder Prince

Monday, October 8, 2018

October 8, 2018 -- Morada dos Passaros (Vitoria da Conquista)

i really loved conference. it was so nice to hear the prophets and apostles and to hear that SALVADOR IS GETTING A TEMPLE IM SO HAPPY. one talk i really liked was elder hollands talk. i hope you guys were able to listen to it. I am so grateful to have a living prophet who is dedicated to guiding zion!! Christ lives and truly helps guide us every day whether thru personal revelation or the light of christ which is in each of us!

tbh i cant believe it. i really was shocked. cuz the whole time i was in the office i was doing research and stuff about how many members and stakes you need for a temple and i heard a bunch of stuff from temple presidents at firesides and the behavior (of the members) and activity levels in our mission and i thought it would take so much longer. i guess i need a little more vision!!

also sorry i haven't really written you an update this week. just imagine me really dusty because of the dirt roads and lots of people not letting us in their homes hahah thats about how it was. 

Elder Prince

Zone Conference

Zone Conference

Monday, October 1, 2018

October 1, 2018 -- Morada dos Passaros (Vitoria da Conquista)

monday was a chill p day. we got elder machado's hair cut at a members house and then slept all day. also got MCDS. we spent the night following up some people that missed church on sunday and we visited Luceni. she is a lady that is trying to quit smoking and has been enjoying church. Her kids moved out because she was smoking so much but now she has cut down her habit a lot. we used to go to her house and not be able to breathe becasue it was so bad and her fingers were all burned from the homemade cigarettes but its getting better! she has been trying to memorize the restoration pamphlet and tries to repeat it to us everytime we go there. She is learning a lot but still has a while to go!

tuesday we found an awesome family! Cleiber Lucitana and their children welcomed us in quickly after we knocked on their door and started to ask us who we were. we taught them the first lesson and right as we got to the First Vision they started telling us about how Cleiber´s uncle had the same questions and he had prayed and had share these questions with the whole family and they have been searching ever since! it was a cool lesson but lucitana doesn't know how to read and their children "don't have time" to help her so we hope we can have some good visits to be able to help her read and gain a testimony of the Book of mormon. we also spent the day following up with some people and reminding Maria of her baptismal date. she was all for it and super excited but her mom was visiting from the farm and she didnt think that these little missionaries were all that. She is a longtime member of an evangelical church so we sat down and went thru the 3rd lesson with her explaining the doctrines and importants of faith repentance baptism and the gift of the holy ghost! it was a nice lesson and we got her approval. the funny part is the maria is 50 and her mom is like 80 hahaha. 

wednesday we had a bunch of lessons fall through so we did lots of contacts and asking our contacts for references. and it worked out! we had another awesome lesson with a family in the neighborhood we have been working in and they asked lots of questions. but the whole time their little 2 year old was screaming his head off so it was kinda annoying. we also taught stella and thabata about family history and helped her to start her family tree! we were able to do up until her grandparents but then she didn't have enough information to continue. she has been having some persecution from her family who are in other churches and she has been kinda down this week so it was really nice to have a good lesson with her! she was all smiles on sunday and loved church even though she is passing thru a few problems. We were also able to get out and do some visits to less active young men with the young mens president and we found some less active families that we are visiting now! we came up to one house and were asking about the young man and he said " you're looking for victor? that's me" then went inside and called his mom. while his mom came out and talked to us he got on his bike and rode away as fast as possible hahaha. gotta love it.

thursday we had weekly planning and a really distant lunch so it kinda shook up our day. but we were able to teach some lessons and a few of our investigators went to the branch activity at the chapel! it was a good night!

saturday we had a really far lunch again but we were able to have a super cool lesson with a reference that we got from the sisters. Sara lost her mom a year ago and stopped going to her church becasue she was so hurt. we had a really nice conversation with her about the plan of salvation and she just about told us her life story within 15 minutes of meeting her. it was cool becasue she alrady had a solid knowledge of the scriptures so when we outlined the plan of salvation for her she just started asking questions about her mom. i felt like for every 3 sentences i spoke she asked a question about her mom! it was a cool experience!

sunday i gave a talk in church (yes i still hate public speaking) and it was so fun to sit on the stand and watch 3 less active families walk into sacrament meeting! it put the biggest smile on my face. they told us that they all really enjoyed being in the church meetings again. we visited some references with a member on the other side of our area and did a good amount of walking in the after noon. this week i have been thinking a lot about the blessings we receive for living the gospel. they're big and they're real! all we need to do is put the teachings of Christ in pratice in our lives and we can see the huge effects they have! John 7:17

love you guys
Elder Prince

[Sam's travel plans came on Thursday! He returns to Salt Lake City on Friday December 7! Mark your calendars! His homecoming will be Sunday December 16.]