Monday, August 14, 2017

Many miracles!

This week was a week of many miracles... Whether it was finding a family who recently moved but were prepping to get baptized on the street, to working with recent converts to find prepared people. This week was awesome and I'm loving the new area. So many miracles... Literally, where ever we go, we find people to teach. My comp and I have been focusing a lot on talking with everyone... we made it a goal to talk to 30 people a day. Haha let me tell you we have had some crazy conversations. Whether it was conversing with a Korean in broken Portuguese and English about his church, or trying to help old ladies carry groceries in the street... we tried to let everyone know our purpose. It was supreme. ahha. This week I had a realization that I really can't be sad... because I have knowledge of the restored gospel. With that in mind, I made a constant effort to smile... let me tell you as jolly as i might be, that was a challenge. But it was amazing becuase in church on Sunday, 2 of the speakers referenced me for being so happy and sharing messages with them that helped them have a stronger testimony... That made my week and the extra effort all worth it. I loved a scripture in 3 Nephi 20 that showed me what can happen after partaking of the sacrament. In verses 8 and 9, we learn that the Nephites were filled with the spirit after they partook of the sacrament. It made me think when was the last time I was filled with the spirit after the sacrament. I had the opportunity to really prepare for the sacrament and what a difference it did make. I know that the sacrament is the most important meeting of the church. I know that Christ loves us. That He lives and that he really wants us to live so that we can return to his presence one day. I love you all and thank you for your love and support...

dave...


I wish I could tell more stories but I'm out of time. many mircles await. have faith and do works.





Monday, August 7, 2017

New!

A new week, a new area, a new comp, a new house, members, city, and so much more. Let me tell you this week passed by slowly. I've never been so lost in so many times and so many places in my life. I literally felt like I was in a Jason Bourne movie.... alley ways and houses on houses... the area is nuts. Plus, my comp, who has one transfer in the area, is super horrible with directions so... that hasn't been too helpful either. BTW, my new comp is known as Will Smith here on the mish because he is a copy of a young skinny Will Smith. His name is Elder Fernandes... a little bipolar, but I'm learning to work with him. The new area, Parque dos Maias, is legit. The members are super awesome and are willing to work with the missionaries. There are 220 active members and 1800 inactive in the area... the bishop wants us to divide the ward so we willl be working a lot with inactives and referrals  This week was full of highlights:
This week, I was in the street when a car pulled up at our side... I thought we would be assaulted, but one of my bffs who already went home hopped out of the car and gave me the biggest hug... haha Elder Manqueo is the best....
We helped out in a Mormon helping hands project where we spent 3 hours giving out flyers to people on the streets of Alvorada... lol I was hoping for a service project where we would change things up a little but handing out flyers to strangers is always great.
We got an awesome reference from a member's son who took us to his best friend's house. We met his friend Kiu, and he started to give us some of the most inspired questions... he is 11. Also, he completely understood our lesson. Let me tell you, the majority of Brazilians have the hardest time understanding the importance of the restoration, but he knew right off the bat. He was also was at church which was great!
We found a 20 year old named Nicolas who had met with the missionaries but never received an answer. We taught the first lesson and invited him to pray and ask God on his knees.. when he finished the prayer he got up and the tears flowed... super spiritual... he received his answer.
Lastly, we taught another couple at 8:55 on Sunday after knocking doors for so long I almost gave up, but my comp decided to knock one more door... and we found an amazing couple and son of 9 years who loved our message and cried when I repeated Joseph's description of the first vision... 
Overall, a lot went down, and I know there are so many experiences waiting me here for me in Porto Alegre. We were talking a lot about goals this week in our zone and found one of the only scriptures that talks about goals in the old testament... Samuel 3:10... really it is a great scripture to ponder and reflect. I dont' have much time this week to get too spiritual on the email but hope that my next can be more edfiying. Thanks for the love and support and prayers

dave

p-day paradise




river baptism

division with Elder Silva

new area... Elder Soua and my comp studying in the background

Monday, July 31, 2017

Transfers and Miracles

Well then.... What can I say... Overall, I'm super sad to be leaving Taquara. Transfers are always the worst... I will let you know why I'm not too psyched to leave Taquara after a week of amazing work. First off, Taquara has been an amazing challenge for me. Over the last 3 transfers, I have been discovering how I can effectively work here to baptize converts. This week was one of my best weeks in the city. First off, I remembered a family that a member had showed me one time and said that maybe we should try to teach them... He told the 2nd week I was here in Taquara. The other day I had a dream that we needed to go there. When we arrived, we found a woman who was one of the first members here in Taquara and her three kids. One of her children, Lucas, who is 22, is amazing. He almost died last year from a brain virus and said he is willing to do anything to follow Christ. We marked his baptism for next week, and he loved church. Also I was able to do a division with Elder Silva one of my office buddies because my comp went to POA to paint houses. On the division, we found a Haitian  Emanuel,who was amazing. He accepted everything that we taught him, and I even got to teach in English. The lesson was super interesting because we had to teach super simply. I was wishin I could make a phone call for Mads because he speaks French. But through using a ton of scriptures in his French bible, he was able to understand the message and accept being baptized. We also taught a couple, Julia e Fabricio, who loved our message. I had already taught them one time, and they have already gone to church. Fabricio is super quiet but when we taught aabout the gospel of Christ, he opened up. We asked him what he wanted to learn in the lesson, and he said how to pray. In the end of the lesson, we kneeled on the their humble houses floor, and he offered the most amazing prayer, asking God for forgiveness for his sins and that he could be prepared to be baptized and start a new life. I couldn't stop smiling. Also, we received an amazing reference of a family who recently moved to Taquara from Fortaleza. They loved church and have a desire to follow what we are teaching. Their 3 kids are super cute also. Lastly, a inactive member who I have visited during my stay here went to church Sunday and brought his son who hasn't been baptized.... he will probably be baptized next week. It always seems like many miracles come at the wrong time.... haha jk. But I'm just happy that i could play a part in these peoples conversion. The transfer was crazy. We live in 4 here in Taquara. One elder will train and his comp will take my place in Taquara with Elder Santos. I'm heading back to Porto Alegre to the area parque dos maias. Pray for me cause I'm excited to see more miracles... thanks for all the love and support.... 

love 

dave

Wedding of Rafael e Patricia

Baptism of Patricia and Rafael no rio

Baptism of Deandry

Monday, July 24, 2017

This week Elder Aidukaitis

Let me tell you, this week was a week of a lot of news.  New investigators, new neighborhoods, new members, and new missionary skills. To be honest, I never thought I would learn so much more than 1 year into the mish. Why did I learn so much you may ask? Because I participated in 2 meetings with the Area President of Brazil, Elder Aidukaitis. All I have to say is that General Authorities are truly inspired and that the spirit was so strong during the meetings.  Elder A gave us all ideas, knowledge, and desire to double or triple the number of baptisms in the mish. Here were some of my take aways: In the 1st meeting, he told us and focused on chapter 8 of Pregar Meu Evangelho. He told us the importance of plans and goals and how learning to establish plans and accomplish goals will help us in all aspects of our life. He was always referring to our last day on the mish and our last day of this life. Did I make a big or small difference in the lives of others and myself? Could I have done more? He told us a successful missionary is a dedicated missionary in all aspects of missionary life, especially creating plans/accomplishing goals. He asked us “Do you want the people you teach to receive the greatest blessing in their lives???” He made an amazing comparison of the liahona to the area book (a binder where we keep important information about investigators), and told us it is the best place to receive revelation for the area. So treat it with respect!!! He also told us that we need to set high goals. On the next day, he talked a ton about our faith. How our faith needs to be like the missionaries of the Book of Mormon. He told us that we need to have this great faith and works. He emphasized about the characteristics of Christ – love, diligence and patience. Most importantly, we need to have this desire to serve others. There are many other scriptures and infos that Elder A declared, but his remarks on our desire to serve, our desire to open our mouths, our desire to look back on the mish saying I put everything out there is what will get our mish to the success that we want. All of this desire will come through planning and goals and constant focus on our purpose. This week was an awesome energy boost on my desire to serve. I can’t wait to put these teachings in practice. Thanks for everything.
Dave




A little p-day churrasco






Our mission group 1 year after
New Tie That I made p-day


Birthday Elder Gomes


Rockiin doorag




Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Buddism e Baptisms

This week was crazy!!! I saw so many miracles and had super fun. Honestly, one of the fastest weeks of my mish. First off I’ll hit on the fun highlight of the week and after the spiritual notes.

So this week, we traded our p-day for Wednesday so we could visit a Buddhist Temple in Tres Coroas, a city nearby. So we got our x-mission leader to drive us there. The temple was sweet. It’s on top of the mountains here so it gave a great view of our area and many other cities. I have never been to a Buddhist temple, so it was pretty fascinating seeing the sculptures, statues, temples, and practices of a different religion. Haha. I thought the 21 taras were pretty cool. After the Buddhist adventure, we had plans to go to another tourist site, a waterfall that our mission leader told us about. So on the way there, his car broke down, but he didn’t want to ruin our p-day and said it was close by. So we decided to walk. So after walking up a giant hill with food, frying pans, and a guitar, we found a sign that said 8 km to the cascata (this was after walking 5 km).  But we still pressed on. We got to the sweet waterfall, ate chicken that we fried over a campfire, played guitar and headed back hoping to hitchhike. But no one picked us up, so we ended up hiking another 15 km to the house…but in the end, all worth it. One of the coolest p-days of my mission career. But let’s move on to a more spiritual note.

So, remember how I talked about Junior the other week. Well, this week, he got baptized!!! Super cool. But I think I tell you a little more about him. We first met him about three weeks ago when he called us out in the street. We ended up setting up an appointment, and he loved the message of The Book of Mormon. After two weeks, we became super tight, and he was loving church. He has had a rough life, but is fascinated by God and religion. So last week the Pres of the mish came to interview Junior for his baptism, and in the interview, he asked if Pres could baptize him.  And Pres. Campos said yes. So this week, Pres. e Sister Campos returned to the branch for Junior’s baptism. It was awesome. So many people were there, and the spirit was so strong. Fosho a great missionary highlight watching Pres baptizing your investigator. We also started to work in a new neighborhood on the other side of the city. We found 2 couples who are awesome and are progressing a ton. Only problem here in Brazil is that no one gets married. Super frustrating. But I’m excited to work with them. Thanks for all the prayers and support. I know diligence allows and creates opportunities to see miracles. Have an amazing week. à Love Dave

Fun fact: I sang the national anthem in the ward activity to celebrate the 4 of July.



21 taras



cascata dos italianos




Junior's baptism

Pres. Campos baptized Junior


Monday, July 3, 2017

Cheerleading


Well, another week in the bag, and I’m feelin’ better than ever. My comp and I put in so much work this week; my body is aching from the pain. But, it’s all worth it cause I know miracles are coming. This week had many highlights, but first off, I’d like to give you some deets about my comp. First off, his name is Wenderson (never heard this name in my life.) He has 4 years in the church.  His pre-church life was pretty crazy if you ask me. Let’s just say he spent most of his time in the street, but when he was baptized he never looked back. He told me the 1st year and ½ of his time in the church, he didn’t have a single friend, but he went every Sunday. As you will see by the photos, he is hilarious. Always cracking jokes, singing Bob Marley Portuguese style, and loves anything that is free or a present. He also loves to use scriptures, which is great but sometimes leads to a good old Bible Bash. Haha. I’ve never bible bashed so much in my life. I’m getting along with him though because he’s all about being obedient so we’re retidoive and the Lord is prepping so many people to hear our message. This week we found tons of teenagers and young adults. Junior is progressing a ton and had everything ready for his baptism, but he has still got some things with Word of Wisdom to resolve. But next week is his week.  We are teaching this awesome couple named Lorissa and José They have been praying, reading the Book of Mormon, and have been wanting to go to church. Only problem is she is more than 9 months pregnant, so we got to have a little patience. We found 2 awesome part member families. One part member fam has 7 people, and they love Elders, so they have been treating us super well. We just got to reactivate them. We taught a teenager named Leonardo this week, and he loved the message. We said he would pray, read the Book of Mormon, and when we asked him to go to church he said it would be hard to get him to go to church because he is pretty active in his current church. So frustrating, I can’t tell you how many times this has happened to me. The people you teach say they understand, but in reality, their hearts are closed off. But that always will happen, so you just got to accept it and pray to find those who are prepared. This week had many funny moments. My comp is trying to learn English so in the street we converse very basically. He asked me “How are you?” I replied, “Good, how about you?” and he said, “Sergipe.” (which is where he is from). Pretty classic. Also we were walking on the highway when a motorcycle screamed past us, a minute later the same motorcycle had u-turned and was slowly approaching us. The motorcyclist stopped and said, “You’re an American.” I replied, “Yes.” He then explained how he was an English teacher and needed my help. He took out his phone and showed me a picture of a phrase and told me to translate it: Have you ever not accepted someone’s apology? LOL I tried my best, but there isn’t really a direct translation for apology in Portuguese.  Then he started to ask questions about the present perfect tense, and let me tell you, I was lost. I’ve forgotten all English grammar rules. When he left, I thought to myself, “That was so random.” There were many funny experiences including singing Akon with 5 Brazilians, trying to be male cheerleaders, and just being with my comp is a laughing experience. Overall, another awesome week. Please pray for Junior that he can be baptized this week and avoid temptation. Thanks for the prayers, love and support. This gospel is perfect.
Love, Dave
Omni 1:25-26
Recent converts who are amazing
6 Missionaries for one branch = poder

lol my comp is such a fool
We tried to be male cheerleaders

round 2

arroz e feijão 





Monday, June 26, 2017

Nova Transferência

Hello fam and friends... This week was funny. My new comp is Elder W. Santos. He is from Sergipe Brazil and is hilarious. He has 1 year and 6 months on the mish... so I got some more experience with me now.. haha. He is a convert of 4 years and loves to joke around. But he is by far my most diligent comp that I have had yet, so I'm feeling confident that miracles are going to happen this transfer. We had two baptisms prepped for this week of Jennifer and Terezinha. Jennifer fell into temptation in the last moment, and Terezinha is just needing some patience. She is a senhora who has been to the church many times.... She says she has recieved a answer to her prayers and knows it's the church of Christ. But she has a major, I mean major, difficulty of understanding the importance of baptsim. We tried to help her understand the importance of baptism through experiences, scriptures, testimony, and prayer.... but she stayed pretty focused on her idea of the matter. But I know that in a couple weeks she will be on her path to baptism and the celestial kingdom. We are also teaching a teenager named Junior who is awesome. He is a little crazy, but he is super interested and loved church this week. He has been telling us that he has a huge desire to be a missionary... so we are trying to get him on the path to help others. It was funny this week we taught about 8 of his friends who are super religious... We started to teach the restoration but a bible bash started. In the end, it was all chill but they asked me if i could speak some things in 
English... just to hear English. So I bore my testimony in English that I knew the things that we had said were really true, Joseph Smith was a prophet, Jesus Christ is our Savior, and the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is the only perfect church here on this earth. It was one of the coolest experiences of the mish. Testifying in very broken English, the spirit was incredibly satisfying, and it was awesome seeing them feel the spirit through English which they didn't understand. I loved a scripture in Omni 23-25 where it shows the importance of the Book of Mormon. Also, it let me know that I need to dedicate myself completely to this work and glory, through prayer and fast. I know that this transfer will be amazing through the dedication of my comp and me. We have so many goals and plans established to find that family who will stay firm in this gospel and raise a generation to the truthfulness of this gospel... I know this church is true, we are all children of God, he loves and knows us, Christ is our perfect brother, Joseph Smith is a prophet of the Lord, and families are forever. Thanks for all the love and prayers.

Dave